Sounds like breaking news, but honestly, Valentine's Day? Who are you and what have you done to GreyCatte? When Farfetch.com invited me to style a pair of outfits for Valentine's Day I almost laughed. First, I don't do Valentines as I happened to grow up without it. Second, I have visited other designer boutiques before and my expectations regarding accessibility (as in, choice in the lower price ranges) and 'real styling' kudos were not overly high.
But it happens that I like a good brand or twenty, so I hit the website and was surprised to find zillions of cool items not only above but below the £150/€200 line. Next surprise: the basic aesthetic of the looks styled by the in-house team actually fits my smart-casual-boyish-minimal-with-a-twist style. My philosophy is, the very best looks are made with vast amounts of creativity and attitude, not vast amounts of money. Also, the best looks don't just get you to aspire to buy things - they inspire. Looking through that filter, I can say Farfetch.com's styling does score higher than the others.
And so, the Valentine challenge is on! But goodness, a challenge it is. As I said, never in my life have I tried to dress for Valentine's Day. Not ever. How do you guys do it?
VALENTINE NEWBIE NEEDS A PLAN
My thinking is, dressing up is part of the gifts so we dress for each other, but there's a bunch of other factors to consider. For me, the looks will have to be:
- sexy without being (visibly) slutty (micro-skirts, stilettos out)
- cute without being too saccharine (pink hearts and puppies out)
- fashion-forward without man-repelling (new season Gucci out)
- easy to wear (anything too fussy, uncomfortable, distracting out)
- a bit unlike the everydays
- something he loves to see me wearing
- hiding a little surprise factor (but we'll leave that to lingerie)
Great, analyse that... I guess I'll stick to clean cuts, subtly glam details and make sure I'm one hundred percent me - and do the same for him. And what are we going to do come the day? A city stroll, definitely. Grab a sweet bite, a coffee, walk some more, have a drink later. A few hours of simple romance, snapping photos like tourists, watch river banks bathe in evening lights, London, Paris, Budapest - you get the picture. For that, I may need to invent 'evening streetstyle' but so be it.
VALENTINE'S EVENING STREETSTYLE RULES FOR COUPLES
1. You both need to be comfortable.
Pick low-heeled shoes, flatforms, trainers or anything with a soft step. Remember, you're supposed to be gliding through the day.
2. You want to be free to cuddle every now and then.
Here in Europe it's still chilly out there. You need coats that are soft and warm, carry gloves and swap hats for beanies (if you don't, you'll know why). Make sure your bags leave you hands-free.
3. Make some serious streetstyle statements
This is no day for full formal attire, cocktail posh or everyday casualwear. I may not approve of the fluffy-crazy things the peacock-type showgoing fash crowd tend to wear at 10am - but evening streetstyle is just about those. You can add details savvy enough for any style guru but still look relaxed and festive enough for a special night.
4. No need to take the love theme too literally, but...
I'm not one for bold colours, heart prints, love slogans or too much cuteness - a (black) Stella Falabella heart is the farthest I will go. Still, in this instance, a little colour co-ordination or a hint of his & hers cannot hurt.