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Fashion Trends: Here today, back next season

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Val Val | 15:06 UK time, Friday, 17 December 2010

Hi Everyone! My name is Val and this is my first ever blog for BBC Learning English. I've recently re-joined the Multimedia Team here in London after a one year break.

Today I want to talk about fashion. I think it's probably fair to say that fashion is a 'scene' and industry full of contradictions. It can either be strictly put into categories - day wear / evening wear, beach wear, the 'casual look' the 'office look'...or mixed up into what would seem like a casual or incoherent manner - shabby chic, underwear as outerwear... Recently on my commute to work, I've found myself looking around at all the wonderful winter fashion around this season. This winter I've noticed people making more of an effort with their looks than in previous years. I've seen some fantastic accessories which I love. For me, accessories are a must have to dress up and change the look of any outfit, and this year the typical winter accessories seem to have been reinvented! It looks like the traditional knitwear and cosy cardis that make a comeback every year are being revived this season with the addition of some more adventurous colours and textures. Snug scarves and woolly hats are being paired with leather fastenings and mixed with other fabrics and prints, making wools and knits not only cosy and inviting but trendy too. Here is Finn wearing his winter warmers in the office:
Finn in his wolly hat and snug scarf

I've seen a lot of animal prints which seem to add a bit of glamour to everyday outfits. It's made me think that I'm in desperate need of revamping my wardrobe! Here in the UK, black, brown and grey seem to be the traditional hues for winter wear. With the weather here often being cold and wet, it seems that this trio of colours reflect the feeling of gloominess that is around at this time of the year! I think most people tend to fall into this trap without noticing - they wear 'winter colours' in winter as it is both suitable and fashionably safe. But we mustn't forget that this season is also synonymous with parties. And why save bright colours exclusively for our party frocks when we can wear them on our day to day? If you want to stand out from the crowd with a little more attitude, a red coat or accessory will certainly add a bit of boldness to your look. A splash of colour is always an easy way to change the look of an outfit. My winter colour choice for the past 3 years has been white or cream. I bought a white jacket 3 years ago which I still love - here I am with some of the team ice-skating 3 years ago:

And here I am a few weeks ago with another white coat peering behind Stephen and Wang Fei!
Alice, Stephen, Val and Wang Fei ice-skating in Sommerset House

Unfortunately having all these white coats has taken its toll on the dry-cleaning bill... I now find myself needing to buy a new winter coat and thought that I might as well take the plunge and do something that I haven't done for years. I'm going to take a more thorough and in depth look at my wardrobe, getting rid of things I don't (or shouldn't) wear anymore and treat myself to a few new items. Three piles: 'the good', 'the bad' and 'the ugly'. The good can, of course, stay exactly where it is. The ugly has only one destination: the charity shop. And the bad... well, the bad can always be turned into good with a certain amount of creativity from the wearer's part! You can cut the tassles off your 80s leather jacket or boots for a more up-to-date look, sow a flower, a bow or big colourful buttons to an old beanie hat, or deliberately mix clashing colours by layering 2 of your favourite tops that don't go with anything (not even each other) for that edgy punk look! When it comes to accessorizing, your imagination is the only limit. How about you? How do you re-invent your look when you feel the need for a change?
Also, can anyone send me some suggestions of what you think I should go for this year with my winter coat??! I want to look for some bargains in the January sales so I'm completely open to suggestions!
Thanks - I'm looking forward to your tips!

Accessories - A 'supplementary' part of your outfit such as gloves, earrings, scarf etc.

Reinvented - To remake or make-over

Snug - Warmly comfortable or cosy, a fitted garment

Woolly hats - A hat made of wool

Revamping my wardrobe - To renovate, but with attitude!

Fashionably safe - A garment or outfit that is fashionably safe is unlikely to be trendy, yet it is classic in style according to the fashion rule book

Clashing colours - Conflicting or disagreeing colours


  • Comment number 1.

    Hello, Dear Val!
    Nice to meet you and congratulations on your first ever blog for BBC Learning English! :) It is a success!!! really interesting to read.
    and i soooo understand you about these white coats :) i have a cream jacket myself..Though it is so cold sometimes here that snug clothes seem to be the best choice ;)

  • Comment number 2.

    Hi Val! Pleased to e-meet you!!

    I do not really like going shopping. I find it boring and it makes me grouchy. Anyway, heavy jumpers/sweaters and most of all boots even for men are all the rage here in Italy. Cheers!!

  • Comment number 3.

    Hi dear Val! It's a pleasure to read your first ever blog and for me it's my first comment on blog BBC.
    I've found your blog so interesting and rich in new words related to winter fashion, in fact, I have taken notes in those words.
    I would like to give you suggestions, but I have never been in winter in any cold country, I wish someday seeing snow, for sure I'll need a fashion winter coat:))
    I am so eager to read your replies.
    Take care:))


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