Darren Kennedy: Style dilemma
QI'm going to the 'Glee' concert on July 2 and we are heading out on the town afterwards, so I want to wear something that will take me from the gig to the clubs! I need a big bag to hold my heels for after, and suggestions on something trendy to wear.
Amy (31), Kildare
AComfort is key at a concert and the right footwear is essential. You'll most likely be on your feet for a couple of hours just getting to and from the venue, plus the duration of the performance itself, so wear some tried and tested boots or wedges that you know will be comfortable for the entire night. Or, as you suggest, wear flats and bring some heels for later.
I would not recommend a bag that's too big, as there's nothing worse than an oversized bag on your shoulder that everyone around you bangs into. A medium-sized, over-the-shoulder bag will keep your hands free and won't get in the way.
For a spot of colour blocking, check out Penneys' mini school satchel (€9). It's delightful and the perfect size for a pair of heels.
With regards to the rest of your outfit, I would suggest trousers or jeans over skirts or dresses. Continue the colour blocking with a pair of J Brand colour-pop jeans that recently arrived at BT2 (€250). Available in red, blue, pink and orange, these are a must-have for any fashionista.
If this price tag exceeds your budget, then the New Look Idol range of skinny jeans is a good alternative, priced €39.99. A pair of colourful jeans speaks volumes, so keep the rest of your outfit fairly simple and deconstructed.
Wear with a basic tee or vest and a slouchy blazer topped off with a bowler hat for an insouciant chic concert look befitting of a night out on the town.
Q: Recently, the local boutique where I buy most of my clothes sadly closed its doors. I enjoy wearing clothes that are slightly different with quirky prints, colours and so on. I am now at a loss as to where to shop. Are there any labels that I should be keeping an eye out for? Dearbhla (47), Tipperary
A: Spanish label Desigual (right) would be right up your street, Dearbhla — it’s a casual clothing brand renowned for its colourful patchwork designs and unusual prints and patterns. There's nothing run of the mill about its collections, which include tops, dresses, coats and accessories. Its style is very distinctive, with a great sense of fun and plenty of colour. Dresses are reasonably priced, starting from about €70. Desigual also has an outlet at Kildare Village, with great value on collections from previous seasons.
Q: I realise this is perhaps a ridiculous question, but what's the best colour to wear with navy? Anne (28), south Dublin
A: Navy is extremely complementary and one of those colours that goes well with most others. Personally, I like it when teamed with red for a classic nautical vibe — think navy dress, red heels and pillar-box red lips for a simple look with lots of impact. But don't limit yourself: shades of orange, corals and peaches will go nicely with it, as will purple, white, blue, yellow and gold. Grey as a third colour combination will work well with most of the above.
Q: I've been invited by my boss to a black-tie summer party. It's an annual event and, from what I've heard, it's a rather lavish affair. I've always hired a tux in the past, but I'd like to invest in one now. Can you suggest any brands? Mark (36), Carlow
A: Mark, a lot depends on your budget. For really good value, Marks & Spencer's sartorial tuxedo (€310) is a beautifully cut piece. I'd always opt for a single-breasted jacket with peak lapel myself. It's simple and classic so won't date. A cummerbund or a waistcoat is optional. If you do go down this route, I would recommend a waistcoat, as cummerbunds can make the stomach appear larger than it really is. Another option is to go for a simple dinner jacket, such as this one from Dolce & Gabbana (€850, Brown Thomas).