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Celebrate Your Style: With Bet Loft & Alex Hardy

When it comes to the fashion forecast for this Spring/Summer, things are definitely looking bright according to John Lewis Personal Stylists, Alex Hardy and Bet Loft.

Picture Credit: John Lewis

The Leicester fashion experts sat down with Pukaar Magazine for a chat about what to expect at weddings and garden parties over the coming months…

When it comes to colour this Spring/Summer do not expect the softer pastel tones which are usually associated with the season. Think ‘Acid Yellow’ and ‘Lime Green’ say Alex Hardy and Bet Loft, who are employed as Personal Stylists at Leicester’s John Lewis store.

Although green is the standout colour for the seasons, muted shades of mint and sage have been replaced this year by more vibrant ones – head turning hues which really make a splash, they reveal.

“Green is a standout colour for the Spring/Summer season. We’re seeing lime green all the way through to a bright emerald green as well”, Bet told Pukaar.

“Where as the past couple of years it’s been a lot of mint and then sage, we’re seeing a move to brighter, more vivid shades this year.

“People have been sat at home for the past two years, and they’re thinking ‘why not go all out and wear something bold and vivid and really make a statement?’

“After the pandemic, we were all stuck in loungewear for a little while and now for whatever the occasion, people really want to dress up and they really want to make the most of the outfits and the clothes that they have,” added Alex.

“Even if it’s a small wedding or a small garden party or event, people really want to celebrate it and enjoy putting an outfit together and wearing something colourful or with a pattern.

“That’s what we’ve definitely noticed.”

As well as bold colours, statement earrings and layered necklaces are also set to be a big trend, according to the two fashionistas.

Picture Credit: John Lewis

Headbands are another accessory which are soaring in popularity right now, replacing traditional hats and fascinators at weddings and other luxury events.

“Around 3-5 years ago, it used to be all about the statement necklace, but we’re seeing a lot less of that now,” revealed Alex.

“I find we’re moving away from chunky necklaces and moving more towards chunky earrings, which are definitely becoming more of a feature in an outfit.

“Layering up your jewellery is also a really nice thing to do, perhaps pairing a longer necklace with a shorter one and wearing them together.

“It depends on what kind of neckline you’re wearing,” pointed out Bet.

“If you’re wearing a higher neckline, there’s no need to wear a necklace really, but maybe just go for earrings instead.

“Find the dress or the outfit first and then accessorise around that,” she advised.

As far as dresses go, the girls have seen a move towards more floaty styles as opposed to more fitted ones.

‘Ditzy floral’ prints (similar to the one Alex is seen wearing), are also going to be a big theme this Spring/Summer.

According to the stylists, when it comes to dressing for a wedding or other special event, comfort is key as you don’t want to compromise on enjoyment.

However, it’s important to keep things classy by selecting a mid-to-full length style.

“It’s important to strike a balance between comfort and glamour, because you can definitely hit both of them with an outfit,” said Alex.

“I’ve had a lot of people say to me, ‘I want to be able to eat and enjoy my meal’, so they don’t want anything too fitted. They want to go for something a bit floaty and we’re definitely getting a lot of those styles in.”

“Comfort is a key thing for a lot of people. It all depends on your body shape and your preferences, but we’re finding some people, whereas before they might have favoured a fitted shift dress, are open to more of a floaty, free style”, added Bet.

Finally with regard to practical advice, the girls had two final pearls of wisdom.

“No stilettos because you’re only going to sink into the grass if it’s an outdoor event,” Bet pointed out.

“For weddings, I’d probably suggest mules or sandals – something with a block heel”, added Alex.

“And don’t forget something like a bolero or something to wrap around your shoulders in case it gets a bit chilly”, she added.

“Something chiffon – light but classy is definitely the way to go”.

For more tips for Spring/Summer dressing, visit Bet and Alex in the personal styling department on the ground floor of John Lewis, Highcross.

By Louise Steel

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