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THE NEW ROMANTIC.

Byline: BY SHEREEN LOW

Romance is definitely on the cards this summer, with girly fabrics such as lace, crochet and broderie anglais in the spotlight.

"This season's "Romantic" is more polished, prettier and more feminine than the gypsy look last summer," says Fleur Debruyne- Clark, Cosmopolitan's fashion assistant.

"It's a feminine, soft and accessible summer look that anyone can dip into, transcending all ages and body shapes. You're never too old to do romantic, as it's quite a classic trend."

She adds: "You can be as romantic as you like - you can wear one item or opt for a romantic-looking dress. Everyone in our office has a broderie anglais item - I just bought a jacket from Primark, which only cost pounds 12."

A TOUCH OF...

If you're not confident enough to carry off the full girly look, it's very easy to introduce a hint of femininity into your wardrobe. Just pick a key item and you'll instantly be brought up to date.

A broderie anglais top is incredibly easy to wear, and can be dressed up with a skirt, or dressed down with a pair of jeans for weekend wear.

Take a look at J Jeans by Jasper Conran camisole, pounds 28 at Debenhams, Wallis' black broderie anglais top, pounds 30, and George at Asda's broderie anglais white blouse, pounds 16.

Long Tall Sally's pretty broderie anglais jacket, pounds 60, is the perfect cover-up for the season, and will keep you warm when it gets chilly.

Or why not show off your legs? Try Butterfly by Matthew Williamson's cream broderie anglais skirt, pounds 45 from Debenhams, or Wallis' white broderie skirt, pounds 45.

Bonmarche's broderie anglais green full skirt, pounds 18, will add a summery touch to your outfit, but New Look's cream cotton broderie anglais shorts, pounds 20, are only for the ultra-brave.

A LITTLE BIT MORE

The romantic look isn't just about broderie anglais - you can also pick items made of silk or lace, which still are the epitome of prettiness.

Dorothy Perkins' jersey lace trim camisole, pounds 22, and George's white lace and cotton long skirt, pounds 16 at Asda, are great picks for anyone, and will carry you through the summer months.

Topshop's premium silk tie camisole with mother of pearl buttons in navy blue or tobacco brown, pounds 30, and Miss Selfridge's cream silk chemise, pounds 18, are silky pieces that you'll adore.

And Matalan has a white crochet trim mini skirt, pounds 10 - only for the young or for those with amazing legs that they just can't wait to show off.

ALL-OVER ROMANTIC

The dress is the must-have item of the summer, so splashing out is a worthwhile investment. The best thing about this trend is that there's a dress for everyone, no matter what size you are.

Aficionados of broderie anglais will like the white dresses from Debut, pounds 80 at Debenhams, and Long Tall Sally, pounds 60. Both flatter figures, hiding any bits you're unhappy with.

Dorothy Perkins' white broderie anglais dress, pounds 35, is a slinkier version, which will skim curves.

Next's black lace prom dress, pounds 46.99, is a sexy little number, and will be the ideal dress for those special occasions, from weddings to Ascot.

Or stand out from the crowd with the JFW lemon cotton and lace prom dress, pounds 150 at John Lewis.

ALL RIGHT WITH WHITE

White's the hottest colour in this season's palette, and French Connection's white embroidered wrap dress, pounds 110, Pepe's Broderie dress, pounds 55 at ASOS.com, and Laura Ashley's cream dress, pounds 60, are cotton dresses that will float nicely in the summer breeze.

Another popular trend that has seen a resurgence in recent months is crochet.

It's not to everyone's taste but for those who are willing to give it a go, check out River Island's white crochet dress, pounds 44.99 or Warehouse's white crochet dress, pounds 65.

Or for something slightly different, Principles' white crochet dress has a black ribbon tie, pounds 69

"IT'S A FEMININE, SOFT AND ACCESSIBLE SUMMER LOOK THAT ANYONE CAN DIP INTO, TRANSCENDING ALL AGES AND BODY SHAPES.

STOCKISTS

ASOS - WWW.ASOS.COM

BONMARCHE - 01924 700 100

DEBENHAMS - 08445 616 161 WWW.DEBENHAMS.COM

DOROTHY PERKINS - 0870 122 8801 WWW.DOROTHYPERKINS.CO.UK

FRENCH CONNECTION - 020 7036 7200 WWW.FRENCHCONNECTION.CO.UK

GEORGE - 0845 300 1111

JOHN LEWIS - 0845 6049 049 WWW.JOHNLEWIS.COM

LAURA ASHLEY - 0870 5622 116 WWW.LAURAASHLEY.COM

LONG TALL SALLY - 0870 990 6885

MATALAN - 01695 552 400 WWW.MATALAN.CO.UK

MISS SELFRIDGE - 0800 915 9900 WWW.MISSSELFRIDGE.CO.UK

NEW LOOK - 0500 454 094

NEXT - 0845 600 7000 WWW.NEXT.CO.UK

PRINCIPLES - 0870 122 8802 WWW.PRINCIPLES.CO.UK

RIVER ISLAND - 0870 160 3201 WWW.RIVERISLAND.COM

TOPSHOP - 0845 121 4519 WWW.TOPSHOP.CO.UK

WALLIS - 0845 121 4520 WWW.WALLIS-FASHION.COM

WAREHOUSE - 0870 122 8813 WWW.WAREHOUSE.CO.UK

CAPTION(S):

DOROTHY PERKINS' JERSEY LACE TRIM CAMISOLE' PEPE BRODERIE DRESS, FROM ASOS.COM' GEORGE AT ASDA'S BRODERIE ANGLAIS WHITE BLOUSE, AND WHITE LACE AND COTTON SKIRT' WALLIS' WHITE BRODERIE ANGLAIS SKIRT' J JEANS BY JASPER CONRAN CAMI, AND BUTTERFLY BY MATTHEW WILLIAMSON BRODERIE ANGLAIS SKIRT BOTH AVAILABLE FROM DEBENHAMS' LONG TALL SALLY'S BRODERIE ANGLAIS DRESS' NEXT'S BLACK LACE PROM DRESS
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:May 31, 2006
Words:875
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