Thursday, May 9, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

By "Summer", I am of course referring to the months of May/ June/July/ August when it may or may not be warm and sunny but it damn well should be. Therefore, an ideal thing to buy is an item which will work when temperatures hobble into the 20s but can equally be tweaked for chillier, rainy days. Obviously, said item will also be the kind of thing which drags everything else in your wardrobe into a feeling of "nowness". What could possibly tick all these boxes? The previously humble dungaree, of course.
House of Holland SS13 (via
Humble I say because dungarees have always been the kind of thing which tend to slot into a less revered side of fashion history. They've never really had a high fashion moment but are the territory of 70s feminists, factory workers, artists, pregnant women and Dexy's Midnight Runners. There is rumour that the reason that dungarees are back on the scene is because of feminism's revival. In The Times this weekend, Janice Turner wrote, "So is this the right moment for Spare Rib to return? After all, dungarees are back in fashion: Keira Knightley, Rihanna and Alexa Chung make them almost look fetching". It's true to say that there's a general vibe of easiness about fashion at the moment- sweatshirts, trainers, tees all feel so much more right than heels and body-con, but whether this is fashion's direct reaction to Everyday Sexism, Vagenda and Caitlin Moran, I'm not so sure. Isn't it just the whole "what goes around, comes around" and because Alexa Chung was obviosuly going to get into them sooner or later, hving lredy done pinafore dresses and playsuits.

On the catwalk, it was the 90s inspired collections whose dungarees shouted loudest. Phillip Lim's SS13 was all about grunge- shirts tied around the waist, cropped tops and a quite awesome pair of pink suede "bib and brace" which are at the top of my most-wanted list. Then there were Henry Holland's acid rave tie-dyed dungarees which could just as easily have been inspired by the madly rainbow bright ones my friends and I used to wear when we were on summer holidays, aged 8.

The very best thing about dungarees is that once you've found the right ones for you, they are super easy to wear and a fashion statement packaged into one neat purchase. I don't need to the bla, bla, bla about good with heels, trainers, crop tops, silky shirts etc, do I?


Carven, £530.57

3.1 Phillip Lim at Brown, £1,255

Topshop £55

Uniqlo £39

Warehouse £48

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