I love when bloggers, street-style stars and stylish-people-in-general are all spied sporting a new styling piece, particularly when said piece harks back to memories of growing up in the 90s, and costs little more than your daily coffee stipend. Enter the bandana, whose prominence has caught me eye of late, and to which I am now a huge convert.
A big advocate of the trend is the ever-effervescent Leandra Medine (aka Man Repeller), whose record of sporting a bandana can be traced back to at least March 2014. A chameleon who knows how to get mileage out of some of the most nondescript of accessories, Leandra has shown that the bandana is one of the most effective ways of channeling what is now known as ‘the third piece’.
That’s right, by simply adding a bandana to your style arsenal, your outfit is instantly lifted into high-style stakes. Whether sporting all black head-to-toe, or testing out this season’s denim boiler suit, adding a bandana is one of the easiest methods of taking it to the next level.
Beyond looking fantastic with just about anything, the true beauty of the bandana is two-fold. Firstly, you can wear it any number of ways: rolled right up and tied neatly around the neck, arm or wrist; as a hair-piece; tied loosely around the straps of your handbag; or, my personal favorite, channeling your inner cowboy and wearing it as a neckerchief. I can speak from personal experience when I say it looks amazing when a bandana square is folded in half and tied around the neck. I wore mine this way when going for a brief stroll around town just the other day, and, even though I was in my comfy, town-strolling uniform (aka my ripped-knee black jeans, white tee with statement black print, and black slides), my lil ol’ bandana managed to turn heads (in a good way!). And, if you are looking to have fun with your neckerchief style, do as I did and tie it around your hair, allowing you to try the stylings of a shorter ‘do without the commitment.
The second fundamentally amazing aspect of the bandana? The price. Sure, you can shell out your hard-earned dollars and get the lovely Saint Laurent version for $265 (and let’s be honest, that’s probably going to be one of the most affordable and accessible pieces from the brand). But if you ain’t so keen on parting with that much dosh, then look to our old high-street favorites. Zara will kindly gift one to you in exchange for $15.90, or do I as I did, and spend $7 (yes, that’s actually less than the cost of two of my morning coffees), at ASOS.
And for my Aussie friends, why not go even one better and support children’s cancer charity Canteen by purchasing a pack of 6 for as little as AU$4 per bandana. Not only will you look good, you will feel good too. So you see, it is possible to be a stylish, buckaroo-channeling fashionista who performs good deeds – who knew?
Someone giving you lip? Let’s hope so, because sartorially speaking, the lip print is one of those trends that keeps emerging time and time again, and looks like it’s here for another round of play from the style set.
No stranger to the fashion elite, lip prints had a renaissance when Prada presented a stunning red-on-white print in their Resort 2012 collection. This wasn’t the first time Prada introduced the print, the lip was a key feature of their Spring 2000 collection (and thus a cheeky but clever throwback to the brand’s own heritage). Fashion’s early adopters vigorously embraced the reinvigorated Prada lip: Michelle Williams graced the cover of Elle UK’s December 2011 issue in the stunning Prada creation; and Lana Del Rey cleverly posed with her famous pout in the print for a Wonderland editorial and subsequent fake Prada ‘campaign’.
Prada’s Muccia then upped the ante and introduced the ‘Smoking Lip’ in the following Spring 2012 collection. While it caused some controversy amongst the general public, fashion’s front-runners embraced the rebellious motif. Not about to let Prada have all the fun, fashion’s other reigning queen of wearable print, Diane von Furstenberg, set forth her great contribution to the lip trend with her Carolina clutch: a mid-size flap clutch featuring a single metal embellishment as the focal point, and a star in many September 2012 editorials.
Since then, there has been no shortage of brands to join the lip brigade, and incidentally no shortage of street style stars to proudly pucker up. From Saint Laurent to Sonia Rykiel, Lulu Guinness to Charlotte Olympia, and even online high street stalwart Asos, brands just keep the lips coming.
Yet the latest interpretation of the trend sees a whole gamut of shades, not just the traditional red-on-white. Aussie favourites Alice McCall and Country Road have stunning blush pink-based designs (somewhat reminiscent of Stella McCartney’s Spring 2014 embellished offering); Sonia Rykiel is mixing it up with blue and whites; and Saint Laurent is channelling tough love with red-on-black.
And there’s certainly no restriction on where the print is found: from demure shoes and kitsch clutches to tailored shirts, cropped pants and mini dresses, the lip is an easy motif to work into any outfit, and one that is guaranteed to inject an element of stylish fun. Better keep an eye (and a lip) on what the Fall collections will make of it!