Lace has always been popular. In the 1700s there was a real lace boom amongst the rich and powerful. It was worn by both men and women wanting to show off their wealth and taste. The craftsmanship that lace-making demanded made it very labour intensive and expensive to make. This was before modern technology brought machine-made lace to the masses. No longer a gentleman’s wardrobe staple, lace is currently more popular than ever before.
This year, we at Talent Management have noticed lace making a significant impact on the catwalks, from Cavalli to Chanel lace was everywhere in the spring/summer 2015 fashion shows and the sheer lace insets that have been popular for a few years now show no signs of disappearing from the style radar any time soon.
From Elizabeth I to Marie Antoinette and Grace Kelly to Madonna, some of the greatest style icons of their age have been rather fond of lace. And quite rightly so: It is beautiful, elegant, sexy and surprisingly versatile. Royal brides in particular have often chosen lace for their wedding dresses. So it’s little wonder that the word itself projects romantic images in our heads.
Ever since that sunny April day back in 2011, when the world watched Kate Middleton walk down the aisle in the stunning Sarah Burton for Alexander Mc Queen lace gown, the popularity of lace has gone off the scales. It has always been a classic choice for brides but, since Kate’s understated elegance, it has become more and more popular. And the trend shows no signs of slowing down. It has enjoyed a recent boost adorning beautiful famous brides such as Amal Clooney and most recently Princess Sofia of Sweden.
Beyond Wedding Lace
But of course white or cream lace for brides is an easy choice. Classic, romantic and demure it may be, but wearing lace on the school run, at Glastonbury or in a board meeting can be a little more challenging.
Do it wrong and you will look as though you borrowed your grandmother’s curtains or that you forgot to get dressed altogether. But get it right and you’ll probably be the most stylish and elegant woman in the room. And right now it’s bang on trend too. White or cream lace works surprisingly well outside the church; there is nothing lovelier than a cool white dress on a hot summer’s day and even better if it is adorned with crocheted lace.
Lace is everywhere from jewellery to shoes and even hair adornments. Any piece of clothing you can think of can now be found with lace on it.
Don’t Overdo It
The key to lacing it up properly is to not overdo it. When something is so delicate and pretty, it doesn’t need much accessorising. Team up your lace dress with clean smooth lines and understated jewellery and match lace accessories with a simple outfit.
Alongside the more traditional white and pastel colour lace, bright beautiful jewel colours, orange, yellow, purple and emerald green are popping up everywhere. These luminous, sometimes nearly florescent colours make lace look fresh, young and interesting and definitely not as though it ever belonged to your Nan.
What to Wear
This summer lace dresses are a popular and excellent choice for any event; it won’t look out of place at Royal Ascot and will work well in your cousin’s country wedding too. You can be stylish and elegant but add a pop of colour, also a showstopper.
A lace pencil skirt looks more interesting than a plain one and works well in the office. Team it with a crisp white shirt and court shoes and lace becomes fit enough for the boardroom. Or choose a lace-trimmed top with jeans and ballet pumps for a perfect casual outfit that can be easily jazzed up with heels for the night.
If an all-lace outfit feels too much, look for lace trimmed tops, skirts or even shorts. Lace on the sleeves or collar can look really pretty, not to mention super feminine. White lace works well too but be careful not to look like a wannabe bride. Try a lace tee-shirt with black leather shorts for an edgy look.
Although it has a reputation for being elegant and rather demure, lace can be very sexy in a subtle way. It can be a great way to show a little bit of skin without really revealing anything at all. For example a lace blouse with a camisole underneath will still show through the skin on the arms and décolleté but will not be frowned upon by your mother in law.
This is definitely the time to wear lace without feeling granny-ish