Throw Away The Rulebook

It’s that time of year again; out of the depths of December come the celebratory drinks invites, work parties and Christmas balls. With festive cheer aplenty and sub-zero, you must fight the urge to stay in under that oh-so-appealing blanket and instead head out the door and embrace winter dressing. Leave the rules behind and experiment with achieving the right balance for you. Not everyone is comfortable in head-to-toe sequins (some things are a blessing rather than a curse). Many say winter is the best season for showing personal style, through layering and texture-play, a look can go from drab to trend-focussed with a few strategic additions.


Left: shirt dress – The White Pepper, £62. Lipstick – Rimmel no. 30 – Boots, £5.50. Right: glitter moon bag – The White Pepper, £38.

Multi-purpose pieces are great for mixing and matching looks to suit different events; we’ve paired a slip dress over leather pants to dress it down, provide extra warmth and play up the two textures, but worn alone for a statement event would have an equally captivating effect. Equally the addition of a good accessory can lift a whole outfit, and the metallic thread of the turtleneck provides the jumpsuit with an evening edge and the faux fur stole makes the outfit playful yet stylish.


Left: burgundy slip dress – Motel, £35. Leather trousers – Topshop, £22. Lace-up boots – ASOS, £45. Lipstick – Russian Red by MAC, £15.50. Right: jumpsuit – The White Pepper, £68. Metallic heels – New Look, sold out.

Instagram is awash with decadent gatherings and opulent gowns, but there are ways of achieving this polished winter chic look without forgoing present giving this Christmas. Whether it be monochrome with a hint of sparkle, accents of velvet and leather or classic stripes you’ll be sure to impress this month.

“You cannot fake chic but you can be chic and fake fur” – Karl Lagerfeld


Nude body – Missguided, £12. Mustard boyfriend coat – The White Pepper, £80. Faux fur stole – New Look, £19.99. Leopard print boots – Zara (model’s own).

An understated smooth base is the perfect starting slate when looking to experiment with eye looks and lipstick shades. Whether it be shimmery lids or a matte wash of colour, the Naked 3 palette creates a wearable yet flattering glitzy party-ready look in an instant. Experiment with matte berry hues, Claudia wears Rimmel lipstick in shade 30, or opt for a fail-safe classic red – Jen wears Russian Red by Mac.


Striped dresses – The White Pepper, £68. Chunky sandals – New Look, £25. Glittery socks – Topshop, £2.50

For Men’s fashion we focussed on statement trousers, from checked to textured plaid, and offset them with a more subtle shirt combination. Turtlenecks are a great way of making the trousers wearable, whilst still retaining their smart status. We teamed the looks with a simple loafer, allowing this outfit to easily transition from day to night.

Picture4Left: Mint green Farah Hudson shirt – Urban Outfitters, £50. Trousers – Primark, £10. Belt – Primark, £3. Right: turtleneck – ASOS, £19 (Set of two).

Make your own show stopping look with a bit of creativity this year and preserve those pennies.

Emma McCormack
Stylists: Emma McCormack & Faye Buckland

Thank you to the models, Claudia Cardinali, Lynton Williams and Jennifer McDermott; and to the make-up artist, Harley Wild. Thank you also to Bar Soba (9a Merrion St, Leeds) for providing us with a wonderful location, and thank you to Motel Rocks and The White Pepper for sending us some beautiful festive pieces. Cover image –

Photography: Ryan Blackwell

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