Last month I posted about the fabulous new Marks & Spencer collections for Autumn/Winter 2013. I can't wait for the collections to arrive instore from July, but in the mean time, I took the opportunity to quiz some of the Marks & Spencer design team about their favourite pieces and to ask them for their top tips.
What are your favourite pieces from the new collections? How would you style them?
“The full structured skirt is one of next winter’s most fashion-forward looks, with a half or full circle silhouette and below the knee length creating an elegant, retro inspired mood. The per una rose brocade dress is my favourite interpretation of this with its deep red tones and sweeping skirt. Wear it on its own as a show-stopping evening gown or style with a cashmere polo neck to emulate a demure 1950s look.”
- Karen Peacock, Head of Design, per una, Indigo & Accessories
“Rounded, unstructured and gently cocooning, the M&S Collection pink duster coat is my favourite outerwear statement for the new season. Soft silhouettes were a key catwalk direction making this M&S Collection coat the perfect update for winter. My favourite thing about this coat is that you can style it up in any way you choose from a smart tailored trouser or pencil skirt worn to the office or draped over the shoulders of a beautiful party dress.”
- Neil Hendy, Head of Design, M&S Collection
Sum up the new collections in 3 words
"Stylish, affordable, luxury." - Karen Peacock
"Great quality, feminine design." - Neil Hendy
What makes these collections different from previous seasons?
Karen Peacock: We’ve injected some love back in to our brands and focused on their brand signatures to ensure that every product in each of our collections has been designed specifically with our customers in mind.
Neil Hendy: In the autumn we introduce M&S Collection which will offer customers the very best choice in confident, stylish clothing. The new collection will offer a considered edit of stylish wardrobe essentials with a renewed focus on great quality, everyday clothing making it easier for our customer to shop and navigate our stores.
What pieces do you think every woman needs in her wardrobe?
Karen Peacock: No woman should be without a beautiful leather handbag to complete her look. Our Autograph leather bags are beautifully designed with luxurious detailing and buttery soft leather to last from season to season.
Neil Hendy: Every woman should own a perfect black trouser and our premium range of Italian wool trousers cover the 5 Key Shapes of the season - superslim, slim crop, modern bootcut, wide leg and straight leg. Designed to flatter the figure and made of luxurious Italian virgin wool these are the ultimate wardrobe staple whatever the season’s trends have in store.
What is your AW13 wardrobe essential piece?
Karen Peacock: "Statement earrings will update any outfit for the season ahead, moving the oversized jewellery trend away from the neckline and bringing a new focus to framing the face.”
Neil Hendy: “The coat is going to be the biggest wardrobe statement for the new season and there are so many great new styles on offer. From the softly cocooning silhouette of the M&S Collection duster coat to the more fashion-forward biker there is something to suit every woman’s style this season.”
What is your number one piece of fashion advice?
Karen Peacock: “Always buy the best possible quality that you can afford. Whatever the catwalks dictate for the season ahead, nothing beats a luxurious, beautifully designed item of clothing or stand out accessory to make you feel special.”
Neil Hendy: “Be aware of your body and the styles that flatter your figure. No matter what the trends are for the season you can always find a way to work them into your wardrobe if you’ve got your style foundations right.”