Ooooh, a technically “late” This Week’s News and Views post, but hopefully you are the forgiving type, Reader…
Banana Republic and Roland Mouret
No doubt you have heard of Roland Mouret, he of the incredible, structured Galaxy dresses that he first released in 2006:
A quick look at his website indicates that he makes lots of other beautiful things, too, but its a luxury brand, so the prices are luxuriously high. However, there is some good news for high street shoppers – he collaborating with Banana Republic, to design a 25 piece capsule collection. The collection goes on sale on 6 August, and I’m hopeful it will be one of the better workwear collaborations.
The collection will be made of the Sloan fabric, which his website states is “is a unique blend of rich, bi-stretch fabric, which creates a “magic” fit that shapes through figure-flattering silhouettes”. Technically, the Sloan fit pieces are made of 56% Viscose, 39% Cotton, 5% Elastane. Personally, I approach viscose pieces with caution, but I have heard lots of great things about the Sloan Fit Slim Ankle Pants, so its a fabric that some Banana Republic customers already know and love.
Banana Republic have a Pinterest board with photos of pieces from the upcoming collaboration. Since Mouret specialises in bodycon, most of the pieces are probably more suitable for cocktail parties than the office, there are pieces that look work appropriate:
This Cropped Short-Sleeve Poplin Top with the Sloan High-Waisted Legging makes a perfect dress down Friday or casual workplace outfit:
This outfit would fit right in to my business casual capsule wardrobe: Colorblock Sweater + Sloan Leopard Pencil Skirt
Finally, worn a size larger, this dress looks like a lovely workwear piece, either with or without a blazer over the top:
I went to Zara on Bond St, amongst the sad remains of the sale stock, I noticed there are quite a few of the leaf print blazer, now priced at £25.99 (was £49.99):
However, there is some new season stock, and there were 3 pieces that really stood out to me:
1. ZARA | Laser-cut leather court shoe in sky blue | 100% goat leather (suede) | heel height: 9.8cm | £49.99
Here is the website photo:
Here’s a close up of these pretty blue suede heels:
I won’t even kid you that I think these would stand up to anything more than occasional wear and, even then, would require a lot of suede protector. Still, they are very pretty.
2. ZARA | Textured cotton jacket in navy | cotton rich | £59.99
This jacket isn’t on the website, yet, but its a lovely, thick textured cotton jacket – this sort of jacket is one of the things that Zara does best, and why I always look at Zara for workwear.
3. ZARA | Buttoned blazer in khaki | 60% cotton, 15% polyamide, 10% wool, 10% acrylic, 4% polyester, 1% elastane | £89.99
This blazer is both khaki and black, woven together, and it looks both unusual and classic, in real life. Here is the website photo:
I had to answer my phone while I was trying to photograph the blazer, so here’s the website photo showing the fabric detail:
You can see that the fabric is very similar to the navy and black Chanel-esque blazer Zara did last season. Also similar, is the pricey nature of the blazer: its £90. Most of their other blazers tend to be £60 or £70. However, if you really like it, do consider buying it before the next sale, as last season’s navy and black one sold out within the first few hours of the sale.
I briefly visited a Mango store and tried on the MANGO | Frayed detail boucle jacket (BELL2) in neutral) | 49% cotton, 46% polyester, 4% acrylic, 1% polyamide. Lined | £39.99 (was £79.99) in size S. The fabric on this jacket, and the navy version, is very nice, with various subtle silver and warm toned neutral colour variations woven in, so I had been wanting to try this jacket on for a while. Here is the website photo:
Here’s how it looked on me:
VERDICT: what a disappointment: my usual size S was huge on me, and also looked very boxy. There wasn’t a size XS to size down to, either in the store or online, so I won’t be able to try a smaller size. However, I suspect that the shape may not work for me, regardless of the size I try.
I also tried on the MANGO | Draped dress in black (MAISOU2) | 80% viscose,17% polyamide,3% elastane. Lined | £29.99 (was £44.99) in size 10 (the tag also says M). Here is the website photo:
Here’s how it looked on me:
VERDICT: If you have any need of a dress like this, buy it – I have put on a bit of weight, and still felt good in this dress. Although a smarter option may be the long sleeved version, which also has the advantage of being £10 cheaper, at £19.99. These dresses are one of the best high street purchases, at the moment.
Thank you for reading, Reader, and I hope you had a lovely weekend!