Velvet! It is everywhere on runways and in stores for this winter, and I couldn’t be happier. I love luxurious fabrics of any description; throw in a statement colour as well and I’m ALL over it. I first spotted this pink velvet Boden trouser suit in photos from their Autumn/Winter press day. When Boden asked my friend Michelle (aka Retrochicmama) and me to choose something for our trip to New York, I went straight for the velvet suit AND some silver sequin heels. I have another pair of Boden shoes (worn here) which are amazingly comfortable. These silver sequin ones are high enough to look like a heel but don’t FEEL like you’re wearing heels. I’m so pleased with how comfortable they are; I’d like them in orange as well.
Anyway, back to the velvet suit (shoes always distract me!)… When I saw the pink one, I was really taken with the floral velvet one too, but I thought it had the potential to not look as great in person as it does in the photos on the website. Coincidentally, that is what Michelle ordered so I could see first hand how wrong I was! Now that I’ve tried on Michelle’s blazer, I want the floral suit too. The quality is fantastic, the fit is amazing, and the slight stretch in the fabric (98% cotton, 2% elastane) means it keeps its shape. Like sequins, velvet is one of those things I wear every year, whether everyone else does or not (although I’m thrilled that sequins are currently having such a fashion moment, thanks mostly to Alessandro Michele at Gucci). I ordered my trousers in the long length; I’m not a huge fan of the proportions of cropped trousers on me, and also I think they could look very dated in a year or two. I like a wardrobe with longevity.
In addition to wearing the blazer and trousers together as a suit, I love the idea of wearing them as separates like Michelle has done here. How great are velvet trousers with a silk top or with a preppy sweater and heels? And how amazing is a velvet blazer with jeans and a statement earring? Velvet fabric elevates any outfit and makes it just a scootch more special… I think of it like corduroy, but better.
Michelle and I had such a blast on our trip which was to mark her 50th birthday (I know, can you believe she is 50?!). One evening we met up with my friend Ron, who is a photographer in New York, and who was also my prom date junior year! He took these lovely photos of us in the West Village before we all headed over to Angel’s Share for cocktails and dinner. The rest of our time in New York, Michelle and I drifted all over the Upper East Side, The West Village, the Meatpacking District, Midtown, Soho, and the East Village, fuelled every day by perfect cappuccinos from Perk Cafe. We did whatever took our fancy. I especially enjoyed sharing some of my old haunts with her, from when I lived in the city years ago. I knew she’d go completely crazy for What Goes Around Comes Around. It is one of the best vintage stores in the city, and maddeningly, I used to live right next door. Before we even walked in, I saw a red sequin vintage Halston blazer hanging in the window (which given the price, thankfully didn’t fit)… some things never change!
The view down 5th Avenue from The Peninsula rooftop bar
Michelle and I started our blogs at the same time, and she’s the one who convinced me to go to a blogging conference where we met the other women that would eventually form The Over 40 Collective. I love her humour, her style, her honesty, and the considered choices she makes as she walks through the world. I trust her so much that I bought a pair of scissors from the pharmacy and had her cut four inches off of my hair while we were away! You’ll see that on a future blog post (we made these photos before The Chop). Blogging is sometimes a lonely enterprise for someone who is as insanely social as I am, but having Michelle AND the Over 40 Collective, as well as the other friends I’ve made over the past few years writing this blog, has turned my laptop into the ultimate office water cooler.
Below is a gallery of the (mostly velvet) pieces that I’m currently crazy about at Boden. I had a hard time deciding between them all, but the pink suit won. There is a green foil print velvet suit (dark green with gold flecks, drool!) that has just appeared online, and would be an investment piece for years to come, especially for the holidays. Also, if you’ve not tried Boden shoes before you really should give them a shot. They are so well made, so genuinely comfortable, and good value. Right now there is a 25% off sale, including free delivery and returns, which I just saw while writing this post (code J3U3 at checkout). I’ll race you to the floral velvet suit!