Stride into Summer in Stripes and Pleats


Style Theory: Pleats and stripes were seen dominating the Spring Summer 2014 catwalks. They are not a new idea to fashion but for 2014 stripes were bolder, more striking and acted as a background to floral prints. They varied from monochrome to pastel coloured to sporty, always chic but now with added twists. Pleats were used to add interest and structure to beautifully tailored clothing. Victoria Beckham added sharp pleats to structured tops, Proenza Schouler's midi skirts were pleated in shimmering metallic fabric, and Celine rocked the pleated look in monochrome, for 2014 pleats are razor sharp and precise.
The Striped Look on the SS14 Catwalks
Burberry Prorsum SS14/Mulberry SS14/Peter Som SS14
The SS14 Pleated Look 
Proenza Schouler SS14/Victoria Beckham SS14/Dries Van Noten SS14
Images above via Pinterest
How to get the look from the High Street?
Stripes are sometimes difficult to wear but with the correct styling they can be an incredibly flattering and striking look.
Here are some styling tips:
Wear bolder stripes on your less heavy area, if you are pear shaped wear a stripe top with a block colour skirt. If you are top heavy wear a striped skirt with a block colour top (stripe skirts look great with a plain, chambray shirt and a statement necklace)
Add a pop of colour to your monchrome stripe look, plain red shoes, an orange clutch adds an injection of colour and completes a chic outfit.
Keep details on accessories to a minimum, a plain clutch/handbag, a simple bangle or necklace. There is one exception, I am a fan of leopard print shoe with stripes so pair the two together if you are feeling bold.
Here is the best striped clothing on the High Street:
The Breton, a wardrobe staple can be worn year after year, buy as expensive as you can afford for a sharp look. Pair with distressed boyfriend jeans, skater shoes and a blazer for a laid back, preppy look or with a floral skirt and animal print ballet shoes for a bold, chic outfit.
Petite Bateau Breton Striped Top £58
Jack Wills The Alburgh Breton Tee £34.50
Stripe Tops: For a more subtle 'nod' to the stripe trend wear a stripe top with skinny jeans (stripes look great with white jeans in the summer) and flat pointed shoes.
H&M Cotton Stripe Top £19.99
Oasis Stripe Shirt £38
Warehouse Multi Stripe Floral Top £30
Topshop Stripe Cat Tee £16
Stripe detail skirts: Pair these skirts with soft denim/chambray shirts and heels for a laid back but stylish look.
Warehouse Blue Stripe Lace Skirt £50
Banana Republic Monogram Striped Organza Skirt £60.50

Topshop Satin A line Dress £70
Zara Stripe and Floral Dress £29.99
Boden Holland Park coat £149
Marc By Marc Jacobs Stripe Mouse Ballerina Shoes @FarFetch £173.72
Boden Sling Back Shoes £69.50
And Now for Pleats....
Pleats this season are origami like, they are sharp and are pressed to the very tip of the hem. Pleated skirts come in beautiful chiffons and silks so they move with every step. Tops have pleated details, structured and purposeful adding a 2014 edge to tailoring.
Here are the best pleated items on the High Street:
Tops: With pleated tops let the pleats do the talking and keep skirts/jeans/trousers and accessories simple to accentuate the pleat detail.
Cos A Line Box Pleat Top £49
Ted Baker Xena Top £99
Oasis Pleat Back T-Shirt £28
Jigsaw Pleat Blue Silk Top £65
Mint Velvet @House Of Fraser Pleat Back Knit £69
Levis Sweatshirt @Asos with Pleat Back Detail £60
Skirts: When wearing floaty, pleated skirts keep your tops as structured and fitted as possible to offset your skirt. Also if possible wear at least a small heel for a more flattering overall look.
Dorothy Perkins Blush Mesh Pleated Skirt £22
Asos Premium Pleated Skirt now £30

Warehouse @ASOS Tie Pleated Back Dress now £39
There are stripes and pleats to suit everyone from basic breton top to precise, knife pleated midi skirts...which one will you choose?
MY STYLE over the last few days....
For a beautiful summery walk through the woods with the kids and the was gloriously sunny..makes me really ready for the summer:
Dress: Asos
Biker Jacket: Asos
Boots: Hunter
For a day running around after the kids, dropping off to school, popping to the shops, etc etc..! 
Jumper: Cos
Jacket: Asos
Jeans: Gap
Skater Shoes: H&M
At the weekend..pulling out the old brogues for a preppy look with a patched jeans.
Jumper: Whistles
Top: Boden
Brogues: Dune
NEXT TIME: Some fabulous Mothers Day gifts us Mums will love...
Frances x


  1. LOVE the idea of stripes with a print - the cat tee is fabulous! You totally rock that ASOS dress - great idea to dress it down for a walk it's such a fab material for every day wear!

    1. I must admit I do love that asos dress perfect for Spring, really looked good with your trousers too!

  2. I love your' style so much. I love the stripe with print and I adore spots with stripes. H x

    1. It is all about mixing, i love a bit if variation too...roll on summer! X

  3. I am in love with the Oasis stripe shirt.....although I need another shirt like a hole in the head! Lol!
    Love your are rockin' the check dress with the wellies! xx

    1. The stripe shirt is cool, you would look fab in it! X

  4. I also love stripes with prints, particularly floral print. Love the asos pleated skirt too. You look so cool in the red dress with wellies!
    Abbi x

    1. I have just bought a similar skirt to the asos one from zara bug couldn't find it online, I like the monochrome and pleats! X

  5. I love that Warehouse blue lace skirt and I have so nearly purchased that TOPSHOP striped dress on it. Love your walking outfit - very glam!! xx

    1. The stripe dress is fab, it is selling out quickly because I think Beyoncé was wearing have the same taste! X

  6. You look fab! Very cool! :)

  7. The Victoria Beckham dress is just absolutely perfect. I think pleats look really good ( you can tell I don't have to do the ironing :0) )

    Love your check dress/biker jacket outfit ! - that looks really cool.

  8. I'm in desperate need of a new Breton & I love that blush DPs pleated skirt too! You look fab in your checked dress & wellies! Off to Glastonbury with you! Ax

  9. Gorgeous choices Frances and how cute are those Marc Jacobs little pumps! I'd also pinned the cat Topshop t-shirt, it's fab.

    Love the Burberry Prorsum spots and stripes combo - I want a lottery win :-)

    Your ASOS dress and Hunter combo are gorgeous, you need to be new Hunter Ambassador!

  10. great blog Frances love the Levis sweatshirt and advice on how to wear stripes.

  11. love your advice on how to wear stripes and like the levis sweatshirt

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