1. Any kind of trousers, pants, skirts or panti-hose that only come up to the hip. Haven’t we had enough of clothing manufacturers saving money on your back, not to mention Plumber’s Crack? Doesn’t anyone see how ridiculous they look?
2. Animal prints: why did they have to escape the bowling alleys and trailer-parks and migrate into J. Crew? Was there really nothing else to do…?
3. Open-toed and peep-toed shoes, which are strictly for summer. And, of course, forget the sandals and flip-flops.
4. Bare ankles peeking out under what we used to derisively call “high-water” pants, trousers, and slacks. If ankles and parts of your calves are showing, your garment is too short and makes your legs look truncated. For a finished look, if not to protect your feet and shoes. you ought to be wearing some sort of hosiery (knee-length stockings are cheap and plentiful). Unless, of course, you are at a very sultry resort. Even then, I would restrict the bare-foot and bare-legged look to poolside. See my Bermuda Dress Code for elucidation on elegance at resorts.
Clarks offers elegant shoes for ladies with good taste, in comfortable, classic styles. After years of women’s shoes with closed toes being all but extinct elsewhere on the shoe-shopping landscape, Clarks Indigo and Diamond lines persist in showing more style than skin.
For Reference: Liz Jones in the Daily Mail, with Photographs Dressing on May 24th Proving the Elegant Survival theory that it does not cost more to look better, the Duchess of Cambridge wore a simple beige dress by Reiss, and dignified shoes. Mrs Obama wore a puzzlingly shiny dress (shininess is not appropriate for daytime) with a too-high waist that emphasised her belly, an oddly-mismatched bolero that seemed to have been squeezed around her, and some long-toed, open-heeled shoes (aren’t the witch-toed shoes passé yet?). Just once we should see some elegant sartorial simplicity from this capable woman, who has obviously been wrongly-advised once again by her handlers. Her dress was the perfect length for the day. However, a pale blue dress doesn’t blend well with a hot-pink bolero, and the satiny look ought to be reserved for evening. The “ensemble” that Michelle Obama wore when meeting the Camerons, a purple dress with a royal blue coat, was also mismatched and awkward. The occasions called for closed shoes (see the Duchess of Cambridge), which the First Lady finally wore with her garish blue and violet clothes, which actually would have been all right had they been of either complementary or identical hues. Mrs Cameron’s dress was a pure abomination, with no redeeming qualities whatsoever. The complicated waist and white panels, together with the busy, low-prole print on the rest of it were tragic. And her reptilian shoes were outrageously high-heeled, making her look sleazy and overly-tall, and her head appear too small. All the above, of course, bears up my traditional theme on classic dressing: money cannot buy elegance. Clothes DO make the man or woman, but first, a person must make the right choices or they will make one look foolish instead of stylish.