Spring/Summer 2015 Paul Smith

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“Its effortless, it’s all about being effortless, did you see how the models just naturally put their hands in their pockets?” Paul Smith was quite taken by the aspirational army of easygoing urbanites that had walked the runway just seconds before.

There was nothing flash about this collection, there were no tricky details or smash, bang wallop summer prints and sprays of colour. Instead these clothes were utterly unapologetic in their elevated normcore appeal. Wear this stuff to live in, was the message. Think giant pockets, loose tailored shapes, khaki cotton trousers and easy, breezy sleeveless linen tops. The elegant, striped drop-waist, pleated dress, worn with super chic flat sandals and leather, across-the-body bags made for a wardrobe that chic, metropolitan commuters can feel comfortable in.

The bag featured in almost every look, from backpacks to relaxed folded totes, each came in muted palette (the grey was best) and in buttery leather.

“A modern girl can wear these clothes,” said Smith backstage, ” The fabrics were linen or cotton but there was a structure about them which gave them this bounce and they had life. She’s not looking for attention through her clothing. She’s happy in her own skin.”

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How To Prepare for Valentines Day

Let’s start with How to have the best Valentines Day…

1. Have a plan

No matter whether you’re spending Valentines Day with your partner, boyfriend, girlfriend, ‘friend with benefits’, or simply just your friends, make sure you have a plan! There’s nothing worse than having huge expectations and ideas for a beautifully romantic, or absolutely hilarious valentines day, only to find out that everything you wanted to do is now unavailable… be organized, plan ahead and you’ll have a great day.

2. Book early

If you’re planning a meal out for this special evening, make sure you make a reservation because every other couple has the same idea. It’s the traditional and romantic thing to do on valentines, but it won’t be so great when you have to make a 5.30 reservation and are sitting amongst screaming kids or alternatively, have to wait until 10 to eat and fall asleep at the table. Having the perfect date at the perfect time will make your valentines day… well… perfect!

3. Valentine’s Transfer Deadline Day

Think of it as transfer deadline day in football, you have just under a week to get your act together and get sorted. Some people like to go for the buy-back clause and resign their ex’s, while others like to dip into their ‘friend zone’ in order to secure a free transfer. New profile pictures and last minute grafting can also go your way but just make sure you put in the work before it’s too late!

4. Make sure you feel good

High self-esteem is a must when the 14th Feb is approaching. There’s nothing worse than not feeling happy about yourself, especially on a day when you either want to impress someone else, or are very aware that you are still single. Spend the week eating healthy and looking after yourself. Statistics show it only takes just under a week to notice a difference, so get started now! Gym a few times, have early nights so that you feel refreshed and rejuvenated, even go to a spa, just make sure that when valentines comes around, you’re the best you that you can be.

5. Get the perfect gift

This doesn’t necessarily mean for your significant other. Although if you are lucky enough so be spending valentines day with someone that you love, turning up without a gift, or with a truly awful one, is a sure way to put a bum note on the evening. Once again it all comes down to planning, make sure you think ahead, and get something with sentimental value. As for the rest without a date to get a present for… get yourself one! This is the perfect opportunity to hit the stores and treat yourself, it’s a day all about love and affection, so buy yourself that top you’ve been wanting for ages, or get a manicure, spend some time and money on yourself!

And now how to have the worst…

1. Spend the day inside with Netflix

If you want to make yourself truly lonely and upset then spending the day inside, preferably still in bed, with Netflix thinking about how single you are or how unfair it is that your boyfriend / girlfriend isn’t here to spend the day with you, will do the job perfectly. Netflix is not your friend and watching episodes back to back will make you not only hate all of the characters and their annoyingly happy lives, but also yourself.

2. Make food your valentines date

It is common knowledge that the worst valentine’s date is food, excessive amounts of food. Even the first satisfying bite of a dairy milk bar, or dominos delivered to your door, is not a stronger feeling than the pure guilt and sickness when you realize you’ve eaten two pizzas, Doritos, dairy milk and four diet cokes. Bottom line is, you along with the shock and horror at your absolute greediness, you’ll wake up with bad skin weighing a lot more than yesterday… great Valentines Day present right?

3. Don’t think

For the unhappily single person on the 14th of Feb, going to a cute restaurant is probably one of the worst ideas. Especially if it has been done up super romantically for this special day and is full of horrendously cringe couples staring into each other’s eyes other over a candle lit dinner. You, on the other hand, are waiting for a table to be set for you and your equally as unhappy single friends as the restaurant “wasn’t expecting parties of more than two tonight”. Alternatively, you could be in a very happy relationship and have just not bothered to think. Forgetting to book a nice restaurant will leave you either eating at some ridiculously early or late hour, or worse, squashed into a booth at MacDonald’s because no restaurants have room for your unorganized self.

4. Get absolutely smashed

If your valentines hasn’t reached it’s low yet, then there’s nothing worse (or in this case better) than drinking obsessive amounts at dinner, just to make sure your drunk alter-ego can embarrass you even more. If you manage to then throw up all of your romantic valentines meal just after you ate it, you know you’re close to rock bottom… absolute floor level bad is if you throw it up on your date’s lap…

5. Hook up with an ex

If you’re feeling lonely on this romantic day, then hooking up with an ex will not cheer you up or make you feel better, it’ll leave you feeling empty and much lonelier than you were before you had this crazy idea. Let’s face it, they’re an ex for a reason… so let’s keep it that way.

chocolate covered strawberries | ... Dip Delights™ Valentine's Day Real Chocolate Covered Strawberries

By: Stephanie Parrott

Instagram: @steph_parrott

How would you prepare for Valentines Day? Let me know your advice below…