Fall Fashion Trends: Classic Styles Revisited

It’s Autumn and the nascent winter chill is in the air. There are new fall clothes in the shops, beautiful fall clothes in our closets, and it is finally their turn to take the dance floor.  Autumn is the favourite season of so many of my friends and for good reason.  The weather is crisp and fresh, and the clothes are a refreshing three hundred and sixty-degree change from the summer clothes that have dominated the past months.  Autumn is the perfect season to show off cold weather fashion without it being so cold that all clothing is hidden by that extra thick and long coat!

So what’s new on the trend front for this Autumn? Animal print seems to be ruling the jungle at the moment – it is everywhere from dresses to coats and bags to shoes.  Animal print has always been a fall classic; however, the standout print is not without its critics.  It is probably one of the more controversial prints that people either love or love to hate.  Fans enjoy its boldness and critics find it harsh and overbearing.

I stand divided on ‘animal print’ love – for me, it depends on the fabric and the exact print that has been used on an item.  Generally, I find I enjoy wearing it most when I accessorize with it, rather than ‘go heavy’ with it covering the whole outfit.

Animal prints work well with classic fall colours and I find that pairing them with black, tan and red is a foolproof recipe for a sophisticated Autumn look. In this lookbook, I have paired my lovely animal print flats with jeans, an oversized cosy black jumper, a classic tan coat and a red crossbody bag.  I love everything about this look; it represents my personal fashion statement perfectly.

I think this time of the year is a great time to invest in some classic clothes that will carry you through the winter and into spring.  in my opinion, investing in classics such as black jumpers and tan coats will provide you with an effective canvas to build your winter look – whatever that may be.  I hope you enjoy this look and feedback is always welcome.  As always, thank you for reading my blog and have a fabulous weekend.

Clothes and accessories:

Premium Black Jumper – H&M

Tan Coat – Massimo Dutti

Flat Shoes – Zara, Similar – ASOS, and Massimo Dutti

Crossbody Bag – Salvatore Ferragamo

 

 

‘January Fashion Slump’ : The Devil Is In The Details

Happy Thursday everyone! Is it just me or do some of you also find that you need to put more effort into styling your clothes at this time of the year?  By the time January draws to an end  – I find that my energy and desire to put some effort and oomph into everyday styling has waned considerably.  I think there a few good reasons for this including:

  • Dressing up multiple times during the holiday season leaves us with a bit of ‘dressing up fatigue’
  • The treats consumed over the holidays can result in some clothes being a tad bit uncomfortable to wear (such as some of my jeans!)
  • The sales have left us overexposed to what’s in the shops and yet there is little that is new and noteworthy to buy in the shops
  • The cold weather has started to lose its charm and basically is getting old – fast!

So what do I normally do about my ‘fashion slump’ in January?  I find that I try harder to concentrate on the finer details of clothes to up my casual style game. I have said this before and I will say it again, ‘effortless style’ is rarely effortless!

The key to ‘everyday styling’ is actively paying attention to the finer details of the pieces that constitute the overall look. Have you ever noticed that people who are always well dressed are never wearing just a striped t-shirt.  Even their simple striped t-shirt will have an edge – maybe an exaggerated cuff or a slanted neckline – the point is that it is these small details that add that layer of polish to their everyday fashion statement.

I think this velvet hoodie from Tobi is a great example of everyday wear with an added twist.  The cold shoulders and the back tie add a layer of detail that takes an everyday item up a styling notch. I have paired it with an oversized scarf for warmth and my favourite pink coat that I have been wearing all season.

A big thank you to  Tobi for sponsoring this post!  I hope you enjoy this lookbook and have a great weekend ahead. As always, thank you so much for visiting my blog.

 

Clothes and accessories:

Velvet cold shoulder hoodie – Tobi

Scarf  – Mango

Coat – Miss Selfridge

Bag – Rebecca Minkoff

Sneakers – Aquatalia

 

 

Seasonal Dressing: My Top 5 Tips to Add Festive Style to Your Daily Wardrobe

The streets are decorated, mince pies are on sale and you know the holiday season is upon us in London because it is finally very cold outside!  The following weeks up to the New Year are going to be a whirlwind of activity, even for the most socially sedentary of us. There are going to be school fairs, work parties, friends parties and shopping trips and they are all great opportunities to incorporate some holiday cheer into our daily styling decisions.

I find that one of the best ways to really get into the holiday spirit is to ‘dress up’ just a tad bit every day.  Even on a cold and dreary day, festive dressing puts a real spring in my step and naturally brightens my mood (if that doesn’t work, eating a mince pie definitely does the trick).

Below are my favourite ways to add some festive style to my daily wardrobe at this time of the year:

  1. Wear Mettalics:  Metallic clothes work perfectly in adding that bit of sparkle to your daily outfit.  I bought this metallic jumper last year and I have worn it ad nauseam ever since.
  2. Wear the colours gold, silver and bronze: These rich tones are perfect for this time of the year and I am amazed at how well they work together in a single palette.
  3. Wear red: Make red your accessory colour of the month –  I make it a point to incorporate my red bags and scarfs into my outfits this month because why not!
  4. Wear Jacquard: I am a huge fan of Jacquard and its woven richness really makes a great winter fashion statement.
  5. Dress up that little bit extra every day: This is the one time in the year that nobody begrudges you that little bit more sparkle and shine in your outfit. I bought this silver leather jacket in the sales last year and I have great fun putting it on this time of the year.

I hope you enjoy this lookbook and decide to dress up for that work meeting tomorrow (perhaps leave out the silver leather jacket).  Have a great rest of the week and thank you for visiting my blog.

Clothes and Accessories:

Jumper – And other Stories

Jacquard trousers – H&M

Shoes – Karen Millen, similar Karen Millen

Clutch Bad – Henri Bendel

Leather Jacket – Zara, similar – ASOS

Holiday Shopping: My Top 10 ‘Practical’ Holiday Dresses

The second half of November has started and the holiday shopping season in London is well and truly upon us. This is always a  great time to shop for a new dress as the shops are bursting with new additions and more importantly, there are holiday parties to attend.

There are two kind of holiday dresses – ‘practical’ holiday dresses and ‘non-practical’ holiday dresses.  In my book, ‘practical’ holiday dresses must pass the following five criteria:

  1.  You can wear them to work and then to a party that you go to directly from work.
  2. The addition of high heels and bling jewellery is all that should be required to take them from the office to the party.
  3. They must over some degree of protection from the cold (such as longish sleeves or the ability to wear something else underneath).
  4. They must not be the reason that people on public transportation are staring at you. That is the job of ‘non-practical’ holiday dresses.
  5. You must be willing to wear them again after the new year.

I enjoy wearing both ‘practical’ and ‘non-practical holiday dresses during this time of the year. They both serve different purposes and the great thing about being a girl is that all kind of holiday dresses are needed and welcomed! This particular blog post is about practical holiday dresses.  I have included pictures of a ‘practical’ holiday dress I bought last year from Zara and ended up wearing more often than any other dress during holiday season 2016.

This Friday is Black Friday and there should be some great deals on offer as well as deals on some of these dresses.  Happy shopping and thank you so much for visiting Isha’s Verdict!

Warehouse – A beautiful red maxi dress with lace accents and full sleeves – it is a great holiday dress that you can wear all year long. In February, it would work exceedingly well for a cold Valentines day look.
Warehouse – great dress to wear to work and a party after work. The relaxed A-line shape means you don’t have to worry about what you eat and drink – the whole point of a holiday party!
Oasis – it’s in the colour of the season, the fabric of the season and will keep you warm all night long!
New Look – A lace dress is always a great party look and a pair of lovely high heeled boots is all you need to add to party all night!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And Other Stories – I love everything about this dress! You can put a lovely turtleneck jumper under this beauty and be warm and trendy both at the office and at the party!
Massimo Dutti – The beautiful floral print on this dress is perfect for wearing all year long. It is a practical length that works for most occasions and the velvet is bang on trend.
Mango – you can never have to many black dresses, especially in the holidays and this polka dot dress is perfect for any occasion.
French Connection – Beautiful colour, beautiful fabric and a beautiful cut! Add a sparkly knit underneath and party like a pro all evening without ever getting cold.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Berskha – A beautiful red wrap dress that can be worn to the office, parties and on the weekend with a pair of jeans. This is a perfect ‘practical’ holiday dress that wil not break the bank!
Coast – This gently flared black dress with long sleeves is perfect for the office and a pair of heels and bling earrings will transform it into a great evening party dress. It’s fit should flatter most body types and you really can wear this dress all year long!

All Shapes Staple: Floral Swing Dress With a Cropped Coat

Happy Tuesday everyone! We are all aware that women come in various natural shapes (so natural that many are fruit-based such as pear and apple) and there are many guides available on how to best dress to enhance your personal shape and form.

In my opinion, there are a variety of styling tips and techniques that really do work in helping to showcase our individual body shape in the most flattering way possible.  The most important lesson I have learned over the years is that learning what not to wear is even more important than figuring out what to wear.  Certain styles are completely unforgiving on certain body shapes and once you can figure out what does not work  – you are more than halfway there!

The good news is that certain shapes work well on most body shapes and the swing dress is one of them. There is a uniquely feminine quality about a dress that moves with ease around your body and the swing dress is one of my all-time favourites.

I love the bold floral print on this dress and orange and blue is a great winter combination. The orange crop coat provides balance to the swing and the vivid pop of colour helps the outfit truly standout.  I am a huge fan of this beautiful leather satchel and the leather only seems to get better with age and wear.  I wasn’t sure how often I would wear blue suede boots and an orange coat when I bought these items, however, I am constantly astounded by how easy it is to incorporate colour into my winter wardrobe now that I am making an effort to do so.

I hope you enjoy this styling and thank you so much for reading my blog.  Have a great week ahead!

Clothes and Accessories:

Dress –  ASOS (Traffic People)

Satchel Bag – Dooney and Burke

Blue boots – Charles and David, Similar – Zara

Orange Coat – Therapy, Similar – Mango

 

 

 

 

From Personal Experience: The 5 Must Haves For an Effectively Warm Winter Wardrobe

I have lived in London for well over a decade now and I have come to gracefully accept (not) that cold days are part and parcel of life.  When I first moved here from Southern California, I found the winter months quite unbearable.  Whenever I stepped out, I was cold and very quickly followed by miserable.  What further surprised me was that everyone else did not seem to be feeling as cold as myself! Over the years, I learned two things:

  1.  I am a naturally ‘cold’ person in the sense that I feel the cold faster than other people around me. It’s genetic – thanks Mom!
  2. I was not dressing effectively enough to combat the cold and truly enjoy the day without turning into an icicle.

Over the years, I have purchased various cold weather clothing and tried numerous brands promising a warmer me. I have now perfected my ‘warm winter essentials’ list – these products are the foundation stones of my ‘snug as a bug’ winter wardrobe. I know that there are others like me out there, and I wanted to share my list in the hope of helping other ‘cold victims’ like myself!

The essential items in my  winter wardrobe include:

  1. Heattech from Uniqlo – I am in love with the Heattech range of innerwear from Uniqlo.  It is the best ‘thermal’ range I have tried and their range of innerwear is extensive including sleeveless, half sleeves, full sleeves and turtleneck inner tops. The range also has different categories of warmth (HeatTech, extra warm HeatTech and ultra warm HeatTech) that allows you to choose the innerwear best suited to your needs. They occasionally carry pretty striped and patterned HeatTech tops that are perfect for wearing under half sleeves dresses and sweaters. I have the whole family hooked!
  2. Ugg Boots – When these shearling-lined boots first burst on the scene many years ago, I wasn’t sure if they would be worth the hype.  I am so glad that I tried them as they are singlehandedly the warmest footwear I have ever owned.  Their effectiveness in keeping my feet warm all winter long is nothing short of amazing! I now own a few of these beauties and they get constant wear throughout the winter.
  3. Velvet leggings from Primark – They claim that these are the warmest leggings you will ever wear and in my case, I found this to be entirely true. These thick fur-lined leggings are perfect for wearing under long-line jumpers, tunics and dresses.  They are one of my best winter wear discoveries that don’t cost the earth and make wearing dresses in the winter a pleasure!
  4. Down Coats – I am a huge fan of down coats. I personally find them more effective in keeping me warm than any other kind of coat.  The Ultra Warm down coat from Uniqlo is part my staple uniform once the cold truly sets in. Buy a long one with a hood and you will love going for long walks in the winter equipped with this cold buster!
  5. Jumper Dresses – Warm and cosy knit dresses are my absolute favourite kind of winter dress.  They come in so many designs and styles and their versatility makes them perfect for both the office and the weekend.  They also make great canvases for showing off your best winter accessories such as hats and scarfs!

These are items that have worked well for me and I hope that they can help keep you warm this winter as well.  I would also love to hear your recommendations of effective cold busting clothes that I might not have encountered yet.

Do share this with your friends and family members that may need extra help in dealing with the cold as I do. Have a great week and thank you so much for visiting my blog!

Clothes

Uniqlo HeatTech Range

Ugg boots

Primark Velvet leggings

Uniqlo Ultra Warm Down Coat

Cos Knitted dress

Ted Baker jumper dress 

Friday Comfort: In a Floral Tunic With Wide-Leg Trousers

Happy Friday everyone! I often find that by the time Friday rolls around, I am ready to luxuriate in a comfortable ensemble to see me into the weekend.  However, it is important to remember that the fifth day of the week is still a working day and therefore, a relaxed yet stylish outfit is called for.

I love the proportions of a loose tunic paired with wide-legged trousers.  Even though the form of both of these pieces of clothing is loose-fitting, and at first one might think that this wouldn’t work, I find that it always works a treat for me.  The key is to add a slight heel, to give the trouser a much-needed lift and allow the relaxed tunic to flow.

I am naturally pear-shaped and with a smaller top half, I often find tunics can be too big along the shoulder seam and end up looking awkward and lopsided on me.  I have solved this dilemma  – by buying dresses from the girl’s section! Dresses meant for girls are cut narrower at the shoulders and work exceedingly well as tunics on me.

This pretty floral tunic is a girl’s dress from Zara.  I have teamed it with my over-sized pinstripe trousers and mid-heel blue boots. I have added my oversized yellow jacket to complete the relaxed vibe and the belt at the waist does a great job of adding some definition to the overall styling. Finally, I have accessorized with an oversized bag to complete my Friday look.

I hope you enjoy this look book and have a great weekend ahead.  As always, thank you so much for visiting Isha’s Verdict.

Clothes and Accessories:

Foral Tunic – Zara (13-14yrs) 

Wide-leg Trousers – Bershka 

Coat – Mango

Boots – Massimo Dutti

Handbag – Dooney and Burke

 

 

Magnificent Munich: Weekend Adventures in Jeans and Lace

Dear Munich,

I am so glad I came to visit you this past weekend.  One of your residents is a great friend of mine.  We met while we were both residing in Mumbai and her friendship and kindness have ensured me a friend for life.  I am lucky that she came back to your arms as it gave me the opportunity to visit.

Over exaggerated praise can sometimes ring hollow, however, superlatives must have a purpose and I intend to employ them diligently. I will start by saying what you must have heard many times before – you are a beautiful city. Your skyline is stunning, the churches and squares majestic and the markets and parks enchanting.

We both know that aesthetic beauty can be found in many a destination but true appreciation hinges on a deeper connection.  Within your magnificent form, there is a calm and serenity that I have rarely encountered in a big city. To praise you, without talking about your culinary delights, would be a grave omission on my part. The beer, especially the wheat beer, surpassed my expectations and I shall find myself scrambling to find your best in London.  The sausages, pretzels and wiener schnitzel were delicious and I have discovered an unexpected fondness for sauverkraut.  Pastry is the secret path to my culinary heart and you had me at Strudel.

I marveled at the architecture and climbing up St. Peters church for the magnificent views from the walkway took away my breath, both figurative and real.  The movement of the tiny platform as the mightly church bells rung stopped my beating heart but I soon recovered with some delicious Weiss beer on terra firma. There is no better feeling as a tourist than when you thoroughly enjoy even what you were not expecting to enchant.  I now understand why BMW World is the most visited attraction in Munich.  Finally, I must state that your Olympic Park built for the 1972 games in the city is an architectural and town planning masterpiece.  I loved the views and walks incorporated within the sporting arenas and would highly recommend it to fellow travellers, especially those with young children.

I came to see you with no particular expectations. I left, looking forward to experiencing your hospitality again, sooner rather than later.  I bought some lebkuchen at the airport to help your memory linger for longer in the recesses of my mind.

Thank you for a lovely weekend!

With love and admiration,

Isha

Clothes and Accessories: 

Blue Dress  – Zara

White sneakers – Massimo Dutti

Pink Coat – Miss Selfridges

Pink Scarf – Mango

Autumn Florals: Celebrating Colour In a Midi Dress and a Pink Coat

I did make the statement in an earlier blog post that one of my fashion resolutions for the coming winter was to wear more colour.  Staying on the path to my style goals, I have purchased a beautiful pink coat that would add colour to any grey day.  A colourful coat is a beacon of cheer on an overcast day (of which many will come) and it is almost impossible not to notice bright outerwear when out and about in the colder months.

A few weeks ago, when I visited the Tate Modern with my family – we were stopped for a security bag check at the door.  The lady asked my husband with a serious face, “Are you carrying any sharp objects?” “Just my brain”, replied my husband with a poker face and then smiled.  She did not smile back.  His response coupled with her completely blank “that’s not funny” face had me and my older child in peels of laughter! The blanking of his joke was funnier than if she had laughed because the situation just organically progressed in a hilarious manner.  In a similar way, I was eager to wear my uber comfortable midi-dress a few days ago and without much thought teamed it with my new coat and snood scarf.  I loved the result of the ‘throwing together’ of colours and textures, proving that sometimes casual last-minute styling works better than a planned outfit.

I love wearing midi dresses with boots in colder weather as tights and a vest underneath ensure warmth and style at the same time.  There are so many beautiful winter floral dresses available at the moment and I have listed a few I like below.

I hope you enjoy this lookbook and as always, thank you so much for visiting my blog.  Have a great rest of the week!

Clothes and Accessories:

Dress – French Connection (similar)

Snood/Scarf – Reserved

Pink coat – Miss Selfridges

Boots – Massimo Dutti

Bag – Karen Millen

Other floral Dresses in the shops:

Mango Floral Dress
Warehouse Floral Dress
Zara Floral Dress

 

 

 

 

‘Rescue Mission Series’: How I Updated My Lehenga for Diwali (for £20)

This is the lehenga and dupatta I wore to my wedding Sangeet many years ago (with a different blouse that time has not treated very well).  I was going through a ‘less is more’ phase during that time in my ‘fashion life’ and pale colours and minimal embellishments were my clothes of choice.  How time changes us – I think if I was to get married today I would be wearing Sabyasachi, Anu Modi and Ritu Kumar to name just a few.  The only restraint I would be able to show is restraining myself from putting them all on together! Of course, that would just be for the engagement…

Despite my preferences for wedding attire changing from ‘less is more’ to ‘more is more’  – I had a great Sangeet and this lehenga rightfully holds the sentimental values of the start of a new life.  It is a pretty lehenga that radiates good vibes and I enjoy wearing it ever so often. This Diwali, I thought it is a great time for a ‘rescue mission’ of this lehenga to enable me to wear it in a more casual fashion avatar than I have done previously.

I was hunting for an embellished top to wear with this lehenga when I found this pretty beaded crop top, with gorgeous fringing, for just £20 online at ASOS.  While this may not be a traditional blouse, it is a statement top that adds a different dimension to the overall look and gives me a chance to rescue this lehenga from the confines of my wardrobe in a quick and easy manner.  There are so many pretty crop tops available on the high street that pair well with Indian clothes.  Of course, a made to measure blouse or top is always a great idea that looks fabulous.  However, sometimes when the situation dictates minimal time and effort – a crop top from the high street is a wonderful alternative.

I hope you enjoy this lookbook and thank you for visiting my blog.  Have a great weekend and I hope you get to enjoy some pre-Diwali festivities in the next few days!

Clothes and Accessories:

Blouse – ASOS (£20)

Earrings – Ishariya