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How to look like a fashion criminal … even when you’re not one

Let’s face it: no one actually WANTS to look like a fashion criminal. And yet, sometimes even the most stylish people out there can make a good outfit turn bad, just by making one simple mistake.

We figure if you know what those mistakes are, you’ll also know how to avoid them, so here are some quick ways to look like a fashion criminal – avoid them at all costs!

fashion criminal with red lipstick and revolver

Wear shoes you can’t walk in

Look, we love heels as much as the next woman: they’re part of the Fashion Police uniform, in fact. If you’re going to wear heels, though – or any shoes, really – you have to be able to walk in them. There’s no easier way to ruin an amazing look than by wearing shoes you can’t walk in. We’ve all seen them: girls dressed to the nines, who’ve obviously put a huge amount of effort into their appearance, hobbling along on a pair of stilettos that are clearly causing them pain. Trust us: pain is never in fashion, and rendering yourself unable to walk because of your footwear isn’t impressing anyone. We’re not saying you can never wear heels (And actually, painful shoes come in ALL shapes and sizes…): just make sure you can actually walk in them if you do. (If you can’t, ShoeperWoman has some tips on how to walk in heels here.)

Wear too much makeup or fake tan

Again, we’re not saying you should never wear makeup or hit the (fake tan) bottle every now and then: God knows, we never leave the station without a full face of slap. When it comes to makeup, though, less is often more, in the sense that if it looks like you’ve applied it with a trowel, or fallen face-first into the MAC counter, you’ll completely destroy any appearance-enhancing properties it had in the first place. Fake tan, meanwhile, should never be orange. Go for a shade that looks natural, or go straight to the Fashion Police jail.

Wear the wrong underwear for your outfit

The Fashion Police are big fans of fancy, frilly lingerie. Unfortunately, that type of under-pinning (as we like to think of it) doesn’t always look great under you clothes. Underwear should serve as the foundation of your outfit (Hence the reason it used to be referred to as “foundation garments”), and should serve to make whatever’s on top of it look better. It should also look invisible, which is why bumpy lace and neon shades should be used with care: they might be undetectable under a thick, dark fabric, but if you’re wearing something light, or form-fitting, you’ll be able to see the outline of your undies, the colour of your bra… or both. Seam-free knickers and “nude” bras may not be the sexiest lingerie out there, but they can often be the best choice for your outfit. You can always save the prettier stuff for those times someone will actually get to see it…

Wear clothes that are inappropriate for the weather or activity

We get it: winter has gone on forever this year, and you’re desperate to break out the spring clothes. Us too. Prancing around in a sundress and sandals in the snow, however, won’t make you look stylish: it’ll just make people ask you if you’re feeling quite well, or if you’ve lost your marbles. Now, obviously we all have different levels of tolerance for things like cold or heat, so if you’re genuinely comfortable like that, then rock on. If you’re doing it just to look good good, though, and you’re secretly shivering like the rest of us, do yourself a favour and wear something more appropriate: pale blue flesh and goosebumps won’t do that sundress any favours. Similarly, it’s important to keep your outfit appropriate for whatever activity you’re wearing it for. If you’re trying to climb a mountain, say, in a mini-dress and heels, you won’t look super-stylish – you’ll just look like you’re trying WAY too hard. (You’ll also run the risk of seriously injuring yourself, and as much as we love fashion, it’s really NOT worth dying for…)

Wear something that doesn’t suit your body shape or general look

We’d like to think that everyone can wear everything, and all look equally good in it. The fact is, though, that no matter how hard you try, some trends or items just aren’t meant to be, and won’t work for everyone. It can be hard to admit that a particular look doesn’t work for you if it’s something you really love, but there’s no point wearing something that doesn’t suit you, just because you like the way it looks on someone else. Take comfort in the fact that there’s something out there that looks fabulous on YOU: you just have to work out what it is…

© Konstantin32 | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images

Crimes of Fashion, Featured Posts, Opinion

Ten fashion trends we hate right now…

shocked retro woman discussing fashion trends we hate

… and by “we”, we mean “you”. Last week we asked our Twitter friends which fashion trends they wish would roll over and die already. Here’s what they said:

1. Adult Onesies

Can we just pause for a minute to say how happy we are to know that it’s NOT JUST US who hates the adult onesies thing? We know they’re “so comfy!” (When you’re using the same argument people commonly use to defend Crocs, though, it’s probably not going to convince us…), and yes, they DO allow you to dress up like a fluffy-wuffy bunny wabbit, but we’re still pretty perplexed by their ongoing popularity.  People, you CAN be comfortable without dressing like a giant toddler. No, really, you can, we promise.

On the other hand, people tend to wear these in the privacy of their own home (Although not always, sadly: it’s not uncommon here at Fashion Police HQ to see a teenager wandering down the street wearing either a “PJs and Uggs” combo, or some kind of onesie…), so who are we to tell them not to? if you love adult onesies, you’ll find our ultimate roundup here.

While we’re on the subject:

2. PJs in public

It takes less than 2 minutes to quickly pull on some REAL clothes, so unless you have an ACTUAL emergency on your hands, we’re begging you: please don’t go out in public wearing the clothes you slept in last night.

3. Leggings

Some of our Twitter friends hated leggings worn as pants. Some hated leggings with bold patterns on them (is there another kind right now? Because sometimes we wonder…). Mostly we get the impression you all just hate leggings, period. We hear you. We actually like leggings when they’re one solid colour and not being worn as pants (as long as there’s some form of crotch-covering we’re good with them…), but they’re one of those items that are just SO EASY to get wrong. And people so often do, don’t they?

we hate patterned leggings

4. Wedge sneakers

This one came up more than once. Wedge sneakers, you are hearby banished: go back to the 90s, where you came from, and don’t let the door hit you on the way out…

5. “Pattern mixing”

There’s a reason why people who aren’t fashion bloggers or self-professed fashionistas don’t mix patterns, you know. It’s because it normally looks like ass. Sure, there are people out there who can do it, and do it well, and if you’re one of them, more power to you. We most often see this described as “challenging” (sometimes it’s even done as part of a challenge) and honestly, getting dressed in the morning shouldn’t really BE a challenge… should it?

6. Peplum

Now, as we mentioned recently, we’re fans of the peplum, which is a true friend to those of us who carry our weight on our stomachs and don’t necessarily want the world to know it. But this list is about what YOU hate, not (necessarily) what WE hate, and some of you hate peplums, so peplums are on the list.

pattern mixing

7. Python print

It became the “trendy” animal skin of the season. We hated it. So did some of our Twitter friends. Did you?

8. Neon

We firmly believe that neon looks good on no one. You will probably never change our minds on this.

9. Bubble necklaces

Another Twitter suggestion. We don’t dislike bubble necklaces in themselves, but when you’ve been seeing them on every single outfit blog for months on end, well, it does get old…

10.  High-low hems

If you can use the word “mullet” to describe it, it’s probably a crime of fashion. Truth.

Which fashion trends do you hate right now?

Image © Seenad | Dreamstime Stock Photos &Stock Free Images

Crimes of Fashion, Featured Posts, How to...

How to spot a crime of fashion

crimes of fashion

Last week, in our random roundup, we made reference to consulting the Fashion Crimes Checklist. What we didn’t mention is that this is an ACTUAL checklist, distributed to trainee officers to help them quickly and easily tell the difference between a crime of fashion and a completely innocent item of clothing. It might help you one day, too, so without further ado, allow us to introduce…

The Crimes of Fashion Checklist: How to spot a crime of fashion in progress.

Spotted a potential fashion infraction? Not sure whether to call The Fashion Police, make a citizen’s arrest, or simply look the other way? Just ask yourself the following questions…

1. Could you wear a diaper under it?

Harem pants, and all other incidences of “drop crotch” clothing are deemed fashion crimes of the highest order. There are no exceptions, and no excuses: if your suspect could easily fit a diaper in the crotch area, you’re looking at a crime of fashion, and it must be arrested immediately.

Conclusion? It’s a crime of fashion. 

2. Is it attached to another item?

Under Fashion Police law, no item of clothing is permitted to be permanently attached to any other item of clothing. So sweaters may not be sewn onto skirts, cardigans should not be welded to shirts, and socks and shoes should forever remain separate. If you spot two or more items of clothing which have become permanently joined at the hip (or anywhere else, for that matter), it’s not a cunning way to make it easier to get dressed… it’s a crime of fashion.

3. Can you see right through it?

Clothing is, by definition, designed to cover the body. If an item of clothing fails to fulfil this basic remit, by virtue of being completely see through, it must be stripped of the definition “clothing”, because it’s NOT clothing: it’s a crime of fashion.

4. Is it underwear?

Underwear is not outerwear. If underwear is being worn as outerwear it is a crime of fashion. 

5. Is it hard to tell whether it’s a dress or a top?

This one is slightly trickier, and there’s definitely some wiggle room, but in general terms, if you have to ask yourself whether a garment is a skirt or a top, the likelihood is that it’s neither: it’s a crime of fashion.

6. Would a toddler wear it?

Again, this one isn’t always easy to call, but The Fashion Police take the act of Dressing Like a Toddler seriously, so if you come across an item of adult clothing which looks better suited to a two-year old, it’s not definite, but it’s probably a crime of fashion.

7. Does it have a “window”?

Clothes don’t have windows. Only houses have windows. And, OK, offices and shops and other buildings. If an item of clothing is found to contain a “window” (generally a window through which the wearer’s underwear can be viewed: see point 4, above), there’s a good chance it’s a crime of fashion. A REALLY good chance.

8. Is it a pair of leggings?

It might NOT be a crime of fashion, but…

9. Are they being worn as pants?

They are a crime of fashion.

10. Is it nightwear?

As with the “underwear” rule, above, nightwear is not permitted to be worn in public. This includes all incidences of adult onesies in public, PJs in public, and the wearing of a dressing gown and slippers to pop to the shop. Put on some clothes, or you’re committing crimes of fashion. 

11. Would it pass the “curtains” test?

Could the item in question easily pass for a pair of curtains? There are exceptions to this rule, but in many cases, possession of curtain-characteristics is a tell-tale sign of a crime of fashion.

12. Is it Crocs?

It’s a crime of fashion. Enough said.

Of course, this list is far from conclusive. Just because your suspect item doesn’t meet any of the above criteria doesn’t mean it’s innocent: not by a long shot. New, and ever-more horrifying items of clothing are being created on a daily basis, and there is no limit t what Jeffrey Campbell fashion designers can dream up. Our best advice to you, then? Be always on your guard, never wear Crocs, and if in doubt… CALL THE FASHION POLICE.

Fashion Polls & Debates, Featured Posts

Five Things The Fashion Police Would Never Wear

Before we start this post, let’s just make one thing crystal clear: we don’t really believe in fashion “rules”. We don’t believe that you should never mix navy and black, for instance, or that red and green should never be seen. (If we believed in that last one, our red-haired, green-dress-wearing Chief of Police would be permanently incarcerated in the Fashion Police jail. Which would be pretty ironic, no?)

For the most part, we believe that people should wear whatever they want to, as long as it’s within the bounds of common decency. But at the same time, we all have our personal taste, don’t we? We all have those little things that we just can’t imagine ever wearing even although we wouldn’t necessarily bat an eyelid if we saw someone else doing it.

This list, then, contains five things that fall into that category FOR US. We’re not for a second suggesting that these things are crimes of fashion, or that no one else should ever do them: they’re just the silly, pointless “rules” that we impose upon ourselves for no particular reason. They’re our own little fashion foibles, in other words, and we bet you have one or two of your own, although probably not the same ones as us, which include…

1. Thick tights or knee high boots in the height of summer

This is particularly stupid of us, because the Fashion Police HQ is in the frozen North. It’s cold 99.8% of the time. But no matter how unseasonably cold it is in August, we just can’t bring ourselves to break out the opaques and boots. Don’t get us wrong: it’s not that we’re walking around in shorts when it’s pouring with rain and freezing cold. We’ll happily wear leggings, or trousers, and we have no issue with breaking out the knitwear and other so-called” wintery” clothes, but we reserve the woolly tights and the knee high boots for the actual winter, not the pretend one we sometimes get in summer.

MM6 Maison Martin Margiela. Nice boots, but not for summer.

2. Summer dresses in winter

Along the same lines as the above. Fashion magazines seem to constantly be telling is how to make sundresses winter-appropriate, usually by layering them over something else, or layering them under piles of knitwear. But we don’t want to. We prefer to keep the lightweight fabrics for summer and the heavier ones for winter. Don’t ask us why, we just do.

Vero Moda sundress. No, we don’t want to wear a long-sleeved t-shirt under it.

3. High heels with frilly ankle socks. Or any ankle socks.

Some people can pull this off and look just great. Not us. We’d look – and feel – like little kids playing dress-up with mummy’s shoes. A look best left to the young ‘uns, we suspect…

4. Anything with a drop crotch

You knew we were going to say this, of course. But we will never, ever wear anything that looks even vaugely like this:

(Click here to view the original)

Your butt just doesn’t ever need to have a face, does it?

5. Pyjamas in public

You know, if we were really ill, and we absolutely HAD to leave the house for something, them OK, we guess we can imagine throwing a coat over the PJs and hurrying back before too many people were exposed to our dishevelled night attire. But we honestly can’t imagine wearing nightwear in public deliberately, or habitually. If that makes up uptight then fair enough, we will wear that badge with pride, but we will never wear our PJs in public.

What about you? What will you just NEVER wear?