The Wanderer – Wandering off – Somewhere…

The sexy Cadbury’s Flake Girl – was it a phallic symbol – or just chocolate? To answer that question for yourself, just click on the link.

“She was tall. Her long hair fell to her waist, framing in gold her pale and lovely face. Her eyes were blue. She wore a loose gown of white cambric, embroidered with living green stems of broom and meadowsweet, and a wreath of green oak leaves in her hair.”

The Owl Service by Alan Garner  (Required reading when I was at school. He was weird, that Alan Garner:dead weird!)

Now, before we start, please click on the flake advert above and watch the clip. This is important as you will need to have the whole feel of this in your mind as you read on. And it’s only 43 seconds long… plus the time it takes you to dash to the corner shop and buy yourself a Cadbury’s Flake of course… um – sorry about that!

We all remember the songs of our youth. For me, when I think back to the Seventies I remember long Sunday nights at the church youth group, listening to (vinyl) albums by Barclay James Harvest, Neil Young, Don McLean, and Queen. But I haven’t chosen any of those for our musical accompaniment today. No -today it’s the Carpenters “Goodbye to Love” simply because of the soaring guitar solo – apparently the forerunner of all the power ballads of the Eighties. Go on, click and give your ears a treat while we wander through the ripening fields of time…

And this look definitely wanders back into the seventies. Not into the glam rock of glitter, platform heels and the Tartan Army, but into those soft and gentle days of summer when that Woodstock look had just made it over the Atlantic Ocean and cheesecloth, thong sandals and a vacant expression represented, if not the cutting edge of fashion, at least its shoreline.

You won’t find any modern fabrics here. As long as you have the money, suede and silk will always  be your first choice (and if you’re counting pennies suedette will do you nicely) and we’re going to see what Miss Selfridge has to offer us this week.

Jackets and coats first.

Don’t plan on getting caught out in a thunderstorm in any of these, girls, as practical they are not. There are light duster coats, both belted and unbelted, I understand that the really posh designers have used suede here too, but Miss Selfridge has opted for crepe. There are plain colours and really rather interesting patterns that I feel may have been devised while under the influence of certain stimulants (an overdose of chocolate maybe). There are richly embellished jackets in sumptuous fabrics and, just when you thought you’d seen everything there was to be seen, out pops a cape with fringes. Boho to the max, darlings!

Crepe Belted Duster Coat – £49
Mixed Print Duster Coat £65
Embellished Jaquard Jacket £35
Floral Cape £35
The Tops
Now, confess, when is the last time you actually wore a blouse? A real one, with buttons and a collar and everything? No – not a shirt, a blouse is quite different – especially when it’s got a pattern like this. But if, like me, your soul rebels at the thought of buttons (the only use for them being to pop off onto the floor when your lover rips the aforementioned garment from your quivering body… sorry – my romance writer persona broke in there for a moment! It’s okay – she’s gone now), then one of the many gypsy tops with ruffles might very well be more to your taste. Are you listening, my friend who complained that the only interesting image in last week’s blog was Raymond, the tennis pro? I believe the correct term for these tops is Bardot blouses. But the deal with wearing one of these is that they must be accessorised with chocolate eaten very suggestively indeed. So – no hardship there, then!
Floral Blouse £30
Ruffle front Bardot top £22
Gypsy Top £35
The Bottoms
Now, how many of us can remember hot-pants? And high waisted trousers? Oh yes, I saw some hands go up there at the back! Well, personally I don’t feel that shorts really go with all this floatiness, but the great designers disagree and have brought them in with – yes, high waists. But they’ve done them not only in denim, which I could understand, but in suede too, which quite frankly, I can’t. I mean – shorts: hot weather? Equals unhygienic in my book. It must be a sign that I’m getting old. Maybe they were thinking Lederhosen or something…
High Waisted Shorts £28
Suede High Waisted Shorts £55
And maybe a little more practically…
Suedette turn-up shorts £35
But it’s not just shorts, oh no! When you think of the Seventies you think of…. no, not platform soles and Gary Glitter…. you think…. Flares; that’s right! And you’d be abolutely correct in that thinking. Here you go! Brace yourselves, this might hurt.
Aztec Kick Flares £32
Floral Wide Legged Trousers
Oh, and one more style we’ve not heard of for a long time. Like Frank Troy in Far From the Madding Crowd we thought it had swum out to sea and been drowned for ever. In fact again, as with Frank, we wished it had. By the way, do go and see that film – it’s so pretty and has the absolutely gorgeous Matthias Schoenaerts starring as the hero Gabriel. In fact, blow the next picture of culottes, lets have Matthias instead….)
Matthias Schoenaerts as Gabriel Oak
(Le sigh…..)
But away from Dorset in 1870 and back to the trends…
Yes – I’m afraid to say it, but culottes are back; this time in florals!
Collottes £45
Although Miss Selfridge doesn’t seem to know how to spell them. If for no other reason than that I foresee a very short lifetime span for this trend. Don’t spend a lot of money on it, my dears.
But, naturally, the dresses are where it really matters, aren’t they?
Well, personally, I don’t like to wear my nightie out in public (not least because I wear cute PJs with dancing sheep all over them and not flimsy nighties like this anyway) but if you are to fully embrace this trend then this is what you’ll be doing. Well – it might as well be a nightie, I happen to think…
Coral Leaf Proint Dress £45
Note obligatory ruffle/waterfall down the front…

But then there’s the maxi dress put together from mini-dress samples…

Floral Patchwork maxi dress £45
And the one where the designer went to Amsterdam and scored some weed before coming up with this one (the pattern is Dutch tiles, if your’e wondering).
Blue Tile Hanky Dress £45
And lastly, the designer who clocked that this year it’s all about suede, patchwork and crocheted lace and decided to put them all together in one dress…
Suedette crochet patch dress £59
The really sad thing? This is the only piece I’d actually think about wearing so far (well, apart from Matthias of course). Somebody take me away and give me a stiff whisky please!
But I have the perfect bag to go with it! Let me show you. Go on, let me!
Tan Fringe Cross Body Bag £35
See, Perfect!
And now all I need is that Matthias Schoenaerts – preferably covered with chocolate…

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