We catch up with our in-house fashion expert Mark Heyes about this year's High Street Fashion Awards and get some style tips along the way!
Hi Mark! So tell us more about the High Street Fashion Awards.
The awards are something we should be really proud of. The fact that we are the only high street fashion awards that the public actually vote for which also has nothing to do with how much money people spend on advertising or this or that or all the rest. It's just what people love, so what I look forward to more than anything is actually the public having a bit of a say.
Ok, what sort of trends we should be trying this summer?
I think definitely black and white stripes. I think that’s the real kind of key look that we saw so many designers do and I think the nice thing is that we are actually seeing vertical stripes as well as horizontal stripes for the first time. The reason why it's quite a difficult thing to do is it's actually more expensive to cut vertical stripes than horizontal ones because of the way the cloth is made, so it's taken quite a bit of time for the high street to actually do it. But they have done it and there is some brilliant vertical stripe pieces out there which are going to slim you down and look completely on trend as well.
Which trends might not suit everyone?
I think the one to be careful of actually relates to black and white stripes and it's yellow, which is such a difficult colour to wear. So few people can get away with it. It all depends on your skin tone whether you can do it. If it doesn't suit you then stick to accessories or wear yellow on the lower half of your body. A yellow pair of trousers complete with a black and white top would look fantastic.
What’s your tip for everyday style?
Just take an extra 2-3 minutes at night to put something out. That’s what I’ll always say instead of frantically grabbing whatever you can or whatever’s clean in the morning! If you just do it, even if it's just a few minutes before you go to bed, it just gives you that extra air and you’ll feel better in yourself as well. You know what, it does make a massive difference to how you feel about yourself.
Have you got a tip for turning a work outfit into a going out outfit?
Obviously a pair of heels to take you to night time. Or just inject some colour. I think at work we tend to be wear darker colours so even if it’s a statement necklace that's a big bright colour with a pair of coloured heels, that will instantly give you your evening outfit.
Whose style you really admire and why?
My ultimate style icon and it’s such an obvious one but it’s because I interviewed her and she was so nice, it’s Sarah Jessica Parker. I love how she puts everything together and how she’ll wear incredible couture but then she’ll also wear high street and still look absolutely incredible. I love how she mixes things up - she’s fantastic. I love Tom Ford as well, from a man’s point of view. I love how dapper he is all the time, I would adore to have the time to have that level of excellence where everything is completely manicured and perfect! I think from a man’s point of view he is one of the most stylish people on the planet really.
How about Cara? Everyone seems to be loving her at the moment...
Cara Delevingue? Yeah she's a sweet girl, she's very nice. I mean, how can you not be a style icon when you're given lots of clothes by lots of designers? I like her and I have to admit I do like how Pixie Geldof puts herself together now. I do like that kind of mixture of a bit of vintage and a bit of retro styling. I think she carries herself very well.
And she’s friends with Henry Holland, which helps!
Yeah, who again is a brilliant bloke and has his own style. I’ve got to be honest if you look at what Henry wears individually, you would be like "nah"’, but then as soon as you put it on Henry he looks brilliant in it because it’s Henry and he gets away with it.
And now for some quick-fire questions... Cool and quirky or girly and pretty?
Cool and quirky.
Full on glamour or natural beauty?
Bold lip or smoky eye?
Killer heels or stylish flats?
Sharp blazer or casual cardigan?
Stripes or spots?
Lithe and toned or soft curves?