The Magical Powers of Diagonal Lines

Diagonal lines on a garment create a visually interesting and flattering effect on the body. They have a magical way of either straightening curves OR creating curves, which depending on your needs can balance out proportions. They are typically created by diagonal stripes or asymmetrical hemlines, and some garments incorporate both. 

Diagonal Stripes 

The diagonal stripes in these dresses, tunics and skirt play the best tricks on your eyes. They temper the volume of the white tunic by drawing the eye back to the centre of the outfit, thereby emphasizing the vertical (1). The diagonal lines on the sleeved midi dress draw the eye back to the waistline, thereby accentuating a defined waist (2). The wide set stripes break up the expanse of solid fabric in the black sheath making the model look curvier than she is (3). The diagonal lines on the handkerchief hem skirt give it some structure by breaking up the expanse of the solid colour (4). They also add a bit of shape to the wide and flowing volume on the lower leg.

Anthropologie Laiken HenleyAnthropologie Pieced Stripe Dress

KAMALIKULTURE Dress Spiral SlitKnit Kit Striped Midi Skirt

Asymmetrical Hemlines

Asymmetrical hemlines are your friend because they create diagonal lines without any pattern on the garment. The asymmetrical hemlines in the first three tops create a fab sense of structure because the diagonal lines flatten the curve on the thigh and showcases more of the leg line from the hips up. Conversely, if you’re narrow on the hip, the diagonal lines of the hems would add some curve and volume. A straight hem on those long tops would look top heavy and would have shortened the leg line. 

Vince Camuto Batik Floral High Low BlouseAllen Allen Slub Knit V-Neck Tunic

Eileen Fisher Soft V-Neck Jersey Top

This final top is an interesting use of different diagonal lines working together. The asymmetrical hemline creates a little more structure on the hip. The side ruching of the wrap front creates diagonal lines in the form of pleats that draw the eye towards the waistline, making it look narrower and more defined.

Alex Evenings Print Sleeveless Asymmetrical Surplice Blouse

Striped Matchy-Matchy Fun

A new outfit from Amber McNaught of Forever Amber, whom we introduced to YLF in July 2014.

A bold Modern Classic outfit that is extra fun because Amber has matched her bag to the rest of the look. The structured satchel also echoes the crisp lines of the dressy trousers. Their bright red colour paired with the navy and white striped long-sleeved tee gives the look a fresh nautical feel. The wide boatneck showcases Amber’s shoulders, while the fitted silhouette works well with the tailored fit of the cropped pants. Streamlined and elegant. Gold metallic snake-embossed espadrille wedge sandals — they complement Amber’s red locks — and a big gold watch add a touch of sunny luxury.

Amber McNaught - 1

Amber McNaught - 2

YLF Gathers in London

Fabbers from around the globe gathered to meet Fabbers in London last week, and had a ball. Diane, one of the British locals from Birmingham, very kindly made our breakfast and lunch arrangements of which our elegant fashion lunch was definitely a highlight of the day. 

Greg and I travelled through from New Malden by train that morning, and although we were on time, most of the group was already at the Richoux Picadilly. There was UK Sue and Ruth who travelled from Guilford and Epsom. Diane and Inge who travelled from Birmingham and Antwerp. Isabelle who took the Eurostar from Paris that morning, and Jaime who flew in from Tel Aviv the day before. We were soon joined by Liz who took the ferry from Amsterdam and Mander who came a much shorter distance from within London. WOW. With us coming from Seattle, this was truly an international group. 

Gathering - Richoux

Gathering - Group

After a rush hour train ride and brisk 30 minute stroll to Picadilly, I was immediately struck by how cool, calm and collected the group was when I first greeted them. Not to mention well put together and fashionable. The wonderfully soothing effect of the ladies was most welcome, and it set the tone for a lovely day. 

We spent the day walking the busy streets of London looking at everything from pricey cutting-edge designer wear to affordable chain store stuff. In true YLF gathering fashion, the banter and excitement did not stop. I asked birthday girl Jaime whether there was anything in particular that she wanted to do. Her request was to find a fun shade of lipstick, so off we went to the Laura Mercier counter to get some Stickgloss.

Gathering

Gathering

Getting to know each other better was the order of the day and we chatted more than we shopped. That said, I found a wonderful cocoon shaped tomato red shirtdress at COS and Inge bought a funky orange and navy necklace. Diane got some great olive fabric at a cloth store, and UK Sue found a pretty scarf at Whistles. We finished off the day celebrating Jaime’s birthday at a French brasserie in Covent Garden. We could scarcely believe that we spent almost 12 hours together. Time flies when you’re having fun.

Greg joined us for breakfast and then went off on his own to meet up with some childhood friends. Later he also went by the National Portrait Gallery, where he saw this sculpture of Sir Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web. Without the web, a site like YLF wouldn’t exist and this gathering in London would never have happened. Thank you Sir Tim.

Gathering - Tim Berners-Lee

After dinner we all went our separate ways. On the way back to Waterloo Station Greg and I crossed the Hungerford Bridge at just the right time to get a wonderful view of the Thames and just a small part of the glorious London skyline.

Gathering - Skyline

For the gathering I wore outfit 12 in the series on my travel capsule for a 4 week trip.

Gathering - Hungerford Bridge

Roundups

Swimsuits & Accessories

A selection of one and two-piece swimsuits, and swimwear accessories

Read More

Boho-Lite Items

Update your casual wardrobe with a few boho pieces for Spring and Summer.

Read More

Mint Items

A selection of mint tops, bottoms, bags and footwear.

Read More

Soft White Tops

A selection of soft white tops that work well as layering pieces, or worn on their own.

Read More

Dresses

A selection of dresses for a range of body types.

Read More

Black, White & Pink

A selection of soft and comfortable pieces for dressy and casual occasions.

Read More

Fashion News Roundup: Week 26, 2015

The top lipstick shades across the world, an Audrey Hepburn exhibition in London, Alexander Wang bringing back his greatest hits, and other fashion news that caught our attention this week.

Fun Fashion Fact

Did you know that Marie-Louise Carven, who passed away at age 105 earlier this month and was noted for her designs for petite women, also had a knack for coming up with clever promotional campaigns. In 1954, for example, in memory of the liberation of Paris, she had hundreds of sample bottles of her signature Ma Griffe perfume dropped over the city on little striped parachutes.

Ensemble: Handkerchief Hem Dress & Sandals

If you like to wear dresses for Summer, I highly recommend the handkerchief hem dress. The jagged effect of the asymmetrical hemline creates an interesting and flattering effect. Combining it with a pair of comfortable sandals is the easiest Summer ensemble of them all. 

I’ve shown five handkerchief hem dresses here, each with a different vibe. Some are casual and others are more dressy. Choose any colour in a pattern or solid.

Here are the components:

Dress: Choose a handkerchief dress in a length that tickles your fancy. I’ve chosen a sleeveless maxi dress, a very fitted flared dress, a baby doll style, a shirt dress, and a striped sack dress. Note that the dresses can define OR surrender the waistline. 

Footwear: The footwear sets the mood of the outfit. Of course, a pair of gladiators or classic wedge sandals will work with any of these dresses, but if you’re after a more trendy look, choose another style of shoe. Think slides, Birkenstocks, chunky soft bed sandals, chunky platform sandals, d’Orsay flats, ankle strap flats, ankle strap pumps, sandal booties, flat oxfords or slip-on sneakers. 

Accessories: Finish off the outfit with a bag that works with the look. Add jewellery, eyewear, watch and headgear as desired. 

A topper like a denim jacket, a vest or a short fitted blazer with rounded front hems is a slam dunk for this style of dress. But worn without a topper, the fabulous dress and your shoes do the talking. I vote this minimal combination best of all.

Ensemble: Handkerchief Hem Dress & Sandals