Saturday, 12 March 2011

Inclusive at H&M

So my return to blogging coincides with a not half bad new range launched in selected H&M stores and, more importantly, on their website. Inclusive is a selection of feminine, directional fashion pieces - untroubled by high-quality materials but catching what's really current, and priced to be affordable. Which is what H&M do well. The difference here is that the range is available from a size 6, right up to a size 28 (although sizing can be skimpy with H&M). This means the range replaces the awful, drab, and impossible to locate 'Big is Beautiful' brand which has been disgracing H&M for years. Hurrah!

The dress at the top of this post is textural and feminine without being girly. It gives a nod to fifties influences, but it isn't full-on retro: that's key to the whole collection. It costs £39.99. It's not my favourite, though, perhaps because the strapless, straight-across neckline is more flattering to a slightly smaller bosom. What I do really love is this I really love this Leopard-print cardigan  £24.99. The detail here sells it: the hints of aqua in the print are picked up in the vibrant turquoise placket, and then the buttons are all different shapes of crystal flower. I shall definitely be getting one, despite vowing not to spend and money.

What to wear with it? Well, if you're less paunchy than me, you might go for this black and blue pencil skirt (£24.99) for a real sexy-secretary, va-va-voom look. Because of the colour combination, worn in isolation I don't think you'd necessarily recognise this as animal print - perfect for more conservative workplaces.

Don't like pencil skirts? This stripy peach skirt is £24.99, and more forgiving of a tummy - though it's well above the knee: I'd definitely want to be wearing tights or leggings with it. Yes horizontal lines add width, but with a full skirt, width is part of the desired effect, and because the stripes are in a different fabric but the same colour, the optical effect is less pronounced.

My last pick are these outrageous shoes (£29.99). I adore these but I won't be getting them sadly, because the real height of the heel is too high.  The platform is 4cm and the heel height is 11.5cm.  That still leaves a true heel height of 7.5cm, or 3 inches - and I'm just too much of a wuss lately.

So - it's a small collection, but it shows great promise, and I hope that more pieces will be added regularly, as they do with their mainstream lines.  Bravo, H&M!

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