Monday's office style note: Stripes

Stripes were everywhere on the catwalks for the Spring 2013 collections, and as the cycle of fashion nature intended, the shop floors are now filled with stripey pieces, from monochrome to candy, to full on brights, there isn't a single label that doesn't offer stripes of some kind...

Whilst stripes in the office sounds like a brilliant idea in theory, in practice this is as much a tricky trend as wild florals or bright neons. Though you will be aiming for an effortlessly cool Riviera look or a 1960s swinging vibe, the results can vary depending on how you pick your stripes and how you style them: horizontal ones tend to add width, whilst black and white head to toe stripes can be a bit too much... Pictures of burglars and Obelix impersonators spring to mind. Mixed stripes were also quite big on the runway shows, but if you're a beginner maybe start by mixing stripes with block colours... Thread carefully!

I think the best way to start with this trend would be the accessories, for example a pair of striped pointy slingbacks (Dolce Gabbana and Manolo Blahnik have some uber-pretty ones) would add some interest to cigarette trousers and a white shirt. If you're feeling bolder, then by all means try a striped dress or a jacket. I find this works best when only one piece is striped, instead of the whole outfit. However, you don't need to shy away from colours: stripes work almost better in colour, in my opinion, offering a more youthful and fresher look than all black and white.

Whatever you do, in order to stay office appropriate, this is a style that works best when tried alone, not mixed in with other Spring 2013 trends, so I'd steer clear of mixing in a midrif baring top or a clashing flower print!

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