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event dressing

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What I Wore: David Jones The Bright Night event

21st September, 2019

Nothing signals the beginning of spring/summer than a healthy dose of light, breezy looks and plenty of vibrant hues. I recently attended David Jones’ The Bright Night event at their newly refurbished flagship store in Sydney and the dress code was all about wearing colour.

Eventually I decided on a baby pink one shoulder top and skirt set by Ginger and Smart. I loved the hint of decolletage that the cut of the top gave, which I’ve always found to be really flattering. The three quarter balloon sleeves also added a on trend touch whilst the matching midi skirt gave a really polished vibe.

As I was wearing a single colour I wanted to add some punchy accessories to lift the look. So I decided on a pair of old favourites from my shoe collection, a leopard print pair of Tabitha Simmons pointed heels with multiple straps. I then finished off the look with a black Dior bag worn as a clutch (seriously one of the best investment bags I’ve bought as it’s so versatile). Now bring on spring/summer…

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – SEPTEMBER 04: Kate Waterhouse attends the David Jones SS19 Bright Night event at David Jones Elizabeth Street Store on September 04, 2019 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Brook Mitchell/Getty Images for David Jones)
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – SEPTEMBER 04: Kate Waterhouse attends the David Jones SS19 Bright Night event at David Jones Elizabeth Street Store on September 04, 2019 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Brook Mitchell/Getty Images for David Jones)

Shop the Look:

Top: Valour Knit Top, Ginger and Smart

Skirt: Valour Knit Skirt, Ginger and Smart

Bag: J’adior Calfskin Bag, Dior

Heels: Tabitha Simmons (old season)

Shop the Look on a budget:

Fashion, Shop

Whats on my shopping wish List

20th September, 2019

I fell in love a few times this month—there are so many beautiful pieces to shop out there right now. My shopping list is heavily influenced by what occasions and work commitments I have at a particular time and as you’ll see when you scroll below, I’m all about event dressing right now. I’ve been looking for pieces that are going to work beautifully for events, particularly all my racing commitments over the next few weeks. So if you’re heading trackside any time soon or you just want to get a head start on your Melbourne Cup look, then you may want get in the zone with a few of my picks below.

Shirley Mini Leather Tote, Staud

Great shape and beautiful colour. So much to love about this bag and it’s so versatile too.

Afra Off-the-shoulder Cutout Satin Top, Cult Gaia

I am really into the drama of this top with the ruched sleeves and exposed shoulder. I could definitely see myself rocking this to many an event.

Triple S Logo-embroidered Leather, Nubuck and Mesh Sneakers, Balenciaga

Whilst this is a slight departure from my events shopping, it’s a worthwhile detour as I don’t think you can ever have too many sneakers. Love the colours of these shoes and the interesting shape.

Metallic Textured Leather-Trimmed Suede Sandals, Prada

These are so much fun! The lightning bolts really make them and I can seem them adding a playful touch to any ensemble.

Gathered Plissé Satin-jersey Midi Dress, Rotate Birger Christensen

Pink is always such a beautiful colour to wear to an event and the elegant style of this dress would make it appropriate for so many different occasions.

Teddie Knotted Plissé-lamé Headband, Loeffler Randall

I love that hair accessories are such a big trend right now. This gold headband would make the ideal finishing touch to many a look.

Insignia Signet, Sarah & Sebastian

Such a dainty little piece by one of my favourite Australian jewellery labels. I’d wear this often as an understated way to accessorise a look.

Carlina Sunglasses, CHLOÉ

It’s time to freshen up my sunglasses collection and what better way to do it than with this pair by Chloe. A great shape and such a fun vibe.

Nile Minaudiere Smooth Calfskin, CHLOÉ

I’ve always really enjoyed this style of bag by Chloe and I especially love the bracelet handle which makes it look like a piece of jewellery.

One-Shoulder Ruched Velvet Maxi Dress, Les Reveries

Velvet is such a gorgeous texture on a dress. It’s also a way of adding a little depth to a look, whilst maintaining the sophisticated sensibility of a little black dress.

Fashion

12 Insta-outfit ideas to steal: events edition

6th May, 2019

In the course of a year I’m sure a lot of us would have a few events to contend with. Whether it’s a work occasion or a wedding or a milestone birthday there are plenty of opportunities to get all dolled up. So where to go with your outfit? If you’re having to pull together a look for a big upcoming soiree then look no further than the following stylish ladies for a little outfit inspo.

You can’t go wrong with a touch of gold. A slinky dress metallic dress with minimal accessories is a sleek and sophisticated way to do event dressing.

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bw2GUMkFI2W/

For a luxe look you can’t go past a beautiful silk or satin number. With its fluid texture and beautiful finish, it’s a way to make a glamorous statement.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BwG7JsOj4A_/

When it comes to events it pays to have a little fun with your look! A riot of colour is one way to make a statement. Bonus points for sequins!

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bv0CQLvhiP9/

You don’t always have to have a knockout outfit to make a look event-appropriate. Expand your horizons to next-level accessories (hello sparkly boots!) to give your outfit a point of difference and to glam it up.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BwnXINVlE_K/

Suits are now definitely an on trend look for any event. But if you’re not one for a classic shade, go bold and embrace a vibrant colour for suiting that’s designed to be the life of the party.

A little tailoring goes a long way when it comes to event dressing. A gorgeous blazer and an all-white look makes for a seriously strong ensemble.

It sometimes pays to add an unexpected touch to an event look a la Elle Ferguson’s dress worked back with boots. It shows that you’re prepared to push the boundaries and be a little more daring with your style.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BwHJbffhgCz/


Dresses and events are a match made in heaven but look for strong silhouettes when it comes time to frock up. A sharp shoulder and angular lines make for a look-at-me outfit that’s also fashion forward.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BwJjyrVDIkn/

Events are made for showcasing statement detailing. A dramatic train such as the one on this look is one way to take occasion dressing up a notch.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BxCo-M_lppx/

Now that we’re heading into winter, one way to take your little black dress in a new on trend direction is to work some sheer tights into the mix. It’s one way to add a glam element to any LBD.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BwC3pVPDnie/

If you like the idea of a dress but want something a little different try a shirt and pants combo. A beautiful blouse worked back with a pair of slacks is event dressing at its classic and sophisticated best.

Prints are made for occasion dressing. Work a fun print into your outfit to ensure that your look stands out in a crowd.

Fashion

On a budget…event dressing

21st March, 2019

As I have to attend so many events during the year it’s not cost effective for me to buy a new look every single time I have to go to something. I’d be spending a fortune on event looks that I might not really wear all that often which just doesn’t make sense to me. I’d rather spend most of my fashion budget on outfits that will get plenty of wear. So I’ve learnt a few ways to do occasion wear without having to spend a lot of money every time…

Have a little black dress in your wardrobe

It’s one of the most versatile things you can own and it’s also one of the best event wear items you can invest in. A simple, sleek black dress can easily be worn to multiple occasions and changed up by swapping key accessories and doing a new beauty look each time you wear it.

Hire something

I’ve raided the cupboards of friends a time or two, or worked with a label when I’m going to an event so sourcing event clothing outside of my own wardrobe is a strategy I’m well aware of. If you can’t hit up your girlfriends’ wardrobes then consider a dress hire service. There are so many of them around now that it would be silly not to take advantage of them. Often you can hire a gorgeous designer dress for a standard rental fee that would otherwise require you to drop a few hundred (sometimes thousands) dollars on it. This makes sense from a cost per wear perspective and you can still get that special feeling that comes from wearing a brand that you love.

Buy at sale time

If you’ve got a dress that you’ve really got your heart set on buying then make the effort to stay on top of any sales that are happening with your fave labels and stores. An online store like The Outnet is also a good source for event wear as they’ll stock designer brands at a generally heavily reduced price. Sign up for newsletters and sale alerts so you can be first to take advantage of any discounts that might be offered.

Re-work existing occasion wear

It’s a good idea to rethink what you already have in your closet. Is there something that you can have taken up? Do you have a dress that you can alter the silhouette slightly? Often the answer to your event wear problems is already sitting in your closet but we all want that ‘new’ feeling so we tend to buy rather than shop our wardrobes. So get creative and see how you can re-purpose what you already own. All you need is a good tailor and you’re set.

Think beyond the dress

Event wear dresses will generally be quite expensive so it pays to get creative and think of other options that will still look dressy but might come at a fraction of the price. A great skirt teamed with a cami or a button down shirt is one way to get around the traditional dress option, and often skirts will be a little cheaper. Or you could sub in a pair of tailored pants for the skirt for a look with a similar vibe. Paired with great accessories and killer heels, you’re guaranteed to look amazing.

Change the small details

A simple change in beauty look can easily revamp existing occasion wear. I’ll often wear something again and just change my beauty look so if I wore my hair up the last time I wore something, I’ll wear my hair down or if I did a smoky eye I’ll do a dramatic lip. Also a change in shoes or bag can also make something feel fresh and new.

Fashion, Shop

New Year’s Eve dresses that will help you ring in 2019 in style

23rd December, 2018

New Year’s Eve is just around the corner and it can be one of those occasions where the perfect party dress is a must on your list. It’s also the ideal time to embrace an outfit that’s bold and has plenty of impact to really help you ring in the new year in style. And really, who can pass up the opportunity to wear something that’s glam and has a whole lot of sparkle?

When it comes to the ideal New Year’s Eve party dress don’t be afraid to push the boundaries and go for something outside of your usual go-to styles. You can afford to go all out as it’s an evening that has such a great party vibe and your outfit should definitely match. You could try doing sequins, experimenting with texture such as flounces and fringing and by all means do plenty of colour. If that’s not your scene, something that has a  glamorous and sexy feel is also ideal.

And when it comes to your accessories you can afford to do something fun. Statement earrings, striking heels and a great bag are all on the list of things to wear to a New Year’s Eve event.

Scroll down below for my edit of party dresses that a will definitely have you farewelling 2019 with plenty of wow factor.

Fashion

My tips for party dressing

12th December, 2018

If the party invitations have started rolling in and you’re facing a schedule full of gatherings in the lead up to Christmas then it can be a little overwhelming trying to figure out what to wear to every single event. Here’s how to avoid any wardrobe dilemmas this festive season.

Find something that can transition easily 

If you’ve got a day time and night time event it can get pretty pricey having to buy an outfit for both. So you need to ensure that you find something that can easily take you from lunch during the day to party in the evening. Think a kaftan or a beautiful dress that you can wear with sandals then make slightly dressier by changing into high heels later on.

Think bright 

Bold colours are always a winner during summer so look for anything in a bright hue that you can really have fun with. Don’t be afraid to make a statement, especially when it comes to party attire.

…or summer whites 

White is so fresh during this time of year especially when you have a bit of golden glow courtesy of a spray or fake tan. A beautiful floaty white summer dress or a great skirt in a neutral hue are a great way to really embody the carefree, relaxed vibe of the season.

A great bag or jewellery can really lift a party outfit

Add accessories 

You can always use existing items in your wardrobe whilst navigating the party circuit but simply dress them up or down with the right accessories. Try a bold pair of shoulder grazing earrings to dial up the drama or add a statement necklace to turn your look into something more striking. It’s an easy – and less expensive – way to wear things you already own but still make the outfit feel new.

Treat yourself to a mani/pedi

One of my shortcuts to looking polished is a manicure and pedicure. I swear by it. Having a pop of colour on my toes and fingernails can elevate an ordinary look into something special. A fresh mani/pedi just adds a touch of polish (no pun intended!) to a look and helps to finish it off.

Have a great pair of party shoes

If you’ve got plenty of dresses that you’ve worn before it can be easy to become bored of them. The key to injecting some new life into them is the addition of a standout item like a pair of statement shoes. Invest in a single pair at the start of party season and you’ll be able to wear them to multiple occasions and make old outfits feel new again.

Fashion, Shop

15 pieces that will get you ready for party season

30th November, 2018

If there’s one thing this time of year is known for it’s the cluster of parties and occasions that seem to happen in quick succession. From the office Christmas party to big family get togethers, we’re often faced with one party invite after the next but our wardrobes can’t quite keep up! If you’re currently on the hunt for a festive look or two to take you through the next few weeks then look no further. I’ve rounded up some great pieces that will make putting together your next ensemble a cinch.

Alice + Olivia draped camisole

A colourful cami that will brighten up many a festive season look.

Rixo Holly polka-dot dress

The subtle polka dot print and fun hue of this dress will ensure you’re ready to party.

Nanushka satin wrap top

This is the kind of top that can easily have multiple outings — just switch up your bottoms and accessories and you’re ready to roll.

MSGM faux leather straight pants

Snakeskin has become quite the trend so jump aboard and give your next party look some added edge with these pants.

Tom Ford Natalia quilted leather shoulder bag

It’s definitely an investment piece, but this Tom Ford bag is the kind of look that you’ll be taking to many a party or occasion for years to come.

Maticevski Palos asymmetric skirt

Major love for anything Maticevski, especially this showstopper skirt.

Gucci Tifosa basketball leather should bag

For those who like their accessories to be a talking point, this is one way to ensure that you’re the belle of the ball (get it?).

Malone Souliers Mara leather mules

Classic and elegant, these mules will work with almost any event look making them a great value buy.

Roksanda Baroque pearl earrings

You can’t head into a party without being suitably accessorised! These earrings are gorgeous and a guaranteed way to elevate any look.

Monse asymmetric plaid corset

A statement-making top is one way to turn any look into one that will steal the show.

By Timo trumpet sleeve blazer

There’s no better time of year to embrace a bright, vibrant red than Christmas time. This blazer will turn any outfit into one with a little extra festive cheer.

Alice McCall Of The Night dress

Wearing a dress with wow factor is certainly one way to enter a party — and this Alice McCall number will certainly have you making an impact.

Pretty Little Thing flared jumpsuit

A cute jumpsuit is a great party look alternative to the sea of dresses you’ll no doubt be seeing.

Simmi London block heeled shoes

In another nod to the snakeskin trend, these shoes will lift almost any look and turn it into something that’s definitely party ready.

Boohoo midi skirt with contrast panels

Take one statement skirt, team it with your favourite top and killer heels and you have yourself a guaranteed winning look. Plus this is one look that will be friendly to your bank account.

What’s your one wardrobe essential this party season?

Fashion, What I Wore

What I Wore: Sport Australia Hall of Fame Awards

13th October, 2018

Earlier this week I flew down to Melbourne with my family to watch my mum be inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame. Attending the 34th Sport Australia Hall of Fame Annual Induction and Awards Gala Dinner was a truly special occasion for us all, most especially for Mum. For such an event I wanted to wear something a little bit different, something with a strong silhouette, and the moment I saw this look by Maticevski I couldn’t see myself wearing anything else.

I usually tend to go for dresses for big events so it was great to be able to venture out of my comfort zone. This top is a showstopper—the one shoulder neckline, the subtle architectural ruffle and the incredible train all made it perfect for the occasion. The soft blush colour also worked beautifully with the white tailored pants and had a really strong, yet feminine vibe to it.

My outfit’s colour palette was quite soft, so I knew I needed to keep the theme going throughout the rest of the look, as anything too bold would have been a little bit jarring. This gorgeous clutch by Farrah and Sloane had just the right aesthetic. I loved the fringing and also the bangle handle, and the style held its own against my outfit without taking anything away from it. A pair of classic neutral Christian Louboutin pumps was the ideal shoe and worked well with the rest of the colours of my ensemble.

It’s always so fun to be able to get dressed up for events and wear gorgeous things, but this look will remain particularly special to me because of the occasion I wore it to. What an honour it was to watch my mum’s hard work and achievements celebrated on such a grand scale, I can’t think of a person more deserving of it.

Credits: Pants and top, Maticevski (available in select stores next month); Shoes, Christian Louboutin; Bag, Farrah and Sloane

Photography: Danielle Castano

Fashion

The best ways to recycle an event dress multiple times

11th October, 2018

Event dressing can be an expensive business when you take into account your outfit, accessories, hair and makeup, shoes… and that’s just before you walk out the door! The best way to keep costs down is to learn to reuse and recycle your occasion wear. Splashing out on a beautiful dress only to relegate it to the back of your wardrobe because you’ve worn it before is a waste of money—which is why you have to get creative. If you truly love a particular event outfit but you’re worried of being seen in the same outfit twice, then it’s time to employ a few tactics to breathe some new life into it.

Mix up you your hairstyle

Doing something as simple as changing your hairstyle when you’re recycling a look is extremely effective for making a dress feel new again. So if you wore your hair down the last time, wear it up, or utilise the help of accessories. From many years of attending the races, I’ve found the simple addition of a striking headwear can really transform an outfit.

Change your makeup

It’s easy to stick to the same tried and tested formula when it comes to event makeup but if you want to reinvigorate an outfit then it’s important to try something different. If you want for dramatic eyes the last time you wore a particular ensemble, then go for a bold lip the next time around. Experiment with colour. Wear some dramatic lashes. Have a little fun with your beauty look.

Go for a different vibe with your accessories

Accessories are key to breathing new life into an old look. By simply switching up your accoutrements, whether it be in the form of things like statement earrings, a cocktail ring or a standout necklace, what you pair with a particular piece can really give it a different style. If you went for a classic, sophisticated style the last time, maybe try experimenting with something a little more modern and bold? By simply giving your accessories a new energy, you give your outfit one too.

Add or take something away

Even if you’re recycling a pair of pants or the same dress you wore to an event, you can still give what you’re wearing a different look and feel either by paring it back or amping it up. So if you went for a lot of drama the last time with bold makeup, voluminous hair and look-at-me accessories, then consider a more sleek approach the next time by doing the complete opposite–understated makeup, hair pulled back and simple classic accoutrements.

Incorporate a new statement feature

Most of the time if I’m wearing an event dress, I will introduce a statement piece into the mix. Usually it’s in the form of a bag or a pair of heels. So if you decided to wear a pair of killer stilettos the last time you wore a particular outfit to an occasion, then change up your statement feature by opting for a colourful bag instead. It’s just about incorporating an additional element that has wow factor.

Fashion

How to elevate an LBD

23rd August, 2018

Having a little black dress (LBD) in your fashion arsenal is a must. It’s a reliable go-to for events and special occasions and guarantees you will look always look polished whenever you wear one. I’ve got a few favourites in my closet that I often pull out when I’ve got a big function and I just don’t have the time to really think about what I’m going to wear. While an LBD is a failsafe fashion option it can also sometimes feel a little too understated and you might feel the need to dress it up a bit more. Luckily it’s really easy to do. Over the years I’ve managed to transform any LBD using the following tricks…

Add a statement heel

This always works a treat because a shoe that’s got some wow factor pairs well with a dress that’s quite simple. I did this with the above look and felt that it elevated the dress and gave it a little more depth.

Dial up your accessories choices

Accessories are your friend. It’s also the perfect time to choose slightly more bold pieces. Pop on a pair of oversized earrings, a gorgeous cocktail ring or a striking necklace to take your LDB up a notch.

Glam up your hair

The way you wear your hair really can change everything. I’ll often opt for an up-do whenever I’m wearing a little black dress as I find it has a slightly more glamorous feel. A bouncy ponytail or a sleek or messy bun is my go-t0.

Add a bright lip

It goes without saying that makeup can really make a look impactful. I’m usually an eye or lip girl but never at the same time as I find it can become a little too overwhelming. When it comes to either with an LBD, I’ll usually try a bold lip if I’m trying to glam up a plain black dress.

Throw on a striking jacket

This works off the same principle as the statement shoe, in that given you have a blank canvas to play with you can afford to go a little more daring with what you pair with a black dress. I’ve found a standout jacket (sequins, colour, patterned – go crazy!) is an effective way to add an element of interest to an LBD.

What are some of your favourites ways to elevate an LBD?