The Chic List: Am I ready to hit the shops? You bet!

It can only have been a man who came up with the ridiculous phrase ‘nonessential retail’. There’s been a massive gaping hole in my life since shops shut their doors. And it’s not all about buying things either.

Wide-leg trousers like this Mango pair are super flattering and look spring-ready with my boyfriend by With Nothing Underneath

Before lockdown, I’d always try to flee the house for a few hours at some point over the weekend, simply to wander round my favourite stores all by myself. Oh, the unbridled joy of this peaceful time alone with my thoughts.

Adios, work projects. Farewell, demanding children. Kiss my bottom, household chores – I’ve made some of my best decisions about life and relationships wandering around shops.

Stores are so much more than just bricks and mortar. To me, they are temples of escapism and inspiration, magical vehicles of transportation to different cities and other more glamorous lives.

There’s nothing better than spotting that perfect dress on a rail – touching it, feeling it, trying it on for size and imagining all the adventures you might have in it. Or finding that hidden gem buried away in an antiques shop crammed with unique treasures.

So what’s on my wishlist of chic things to coo over when the stores reopen on 12 April?

The first is a new-season chunky sandal, which I will be wearing with maxiskirts and spring dresses. I’m normally a skinny sandal (Ancient Greek Sandals are a big favourite)
or a mule girl (check out brands By Far or Aeydē for these) when feet are allowed to escape the confines of boots and trainers, but this year I’m adding the chunky sole to my wardrobe for a flash of edgy contrast.

And no more skinny trousers – I’ve ditched them for chic high-waisted, wide-leg or flared trousers and jeans, which I find are way more flattering on the leg. Did you know that one of the queens of chic, Jane Birkin, hunts down her wide-leg trousers in secondhand men’s shops? They are a perfect easy pairing, too, with a blazer or print blouse for April’s unpredictable weather.

My other spring favourite is to wear a chunky gold ring with satin dresses and skirts. The right piece of jewellery really can add huge personality to an outfit and become a key part of your signature look.

And I’m really looking forward to finding magic pieces in fresh life-enhancing blue, leafy greens and vibrant yellows to add some colour to my wardrobe.

The trill of the tills is just eight days away – and I’m counting down the hours. Just don’t try to tell me any of it is nonessential!

page16image24654784Bag, £325, Dragon Diffusion,

Team with white jeans and a blazer now, and with breezy summer dresses later.

Ring, £285, Chloé,

Create your chic signature look with statement jewellery.

Sandals, £165,

Add some sole to your wardrobe.

Trousers, £35.99,

These trousers are a terrific basic to lighten things up for spring.

 Top, £19,

Pair this with a pair of white high-waisted trousers and a gold chain to create a clean, modern look.

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