Can you ever wear metallics without feeling like a disco ball?

Elegant summer shimmer or sad sheet of Bacofoil? Stacey Duguid gives metallics a whirl

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By Stacey Duguid on

Metallics: not a real word, more of a fashion term used to describe shiny clothes. Each summer, it’s the same. In April, you can’t move on the high street for floral-printed everything – pastel shades first, then ballsy brights a bit later on. Come July, shops fill up with more gold, silver and bronze than is housed in the safe at the Bank of England. From punkish roses to pretty ditsy prints, honestly, I reckon there’s a floral print out there for everyone, but metallics? OK, silver bags and shoes and other accessories, YES, totally doable, but clothes? How does that work?

Last week, after spying a dress made from what looked like molten lava in a sludgy shade of silver in Zara’s window, I dashed in and took it to the changing room faster than you can say "Kate Moss circa 1993". Remember Mossy in that silver spaghetti-strap slither of a slip dress, the see-through thing she wore with trainers? Even if you were still at school in 1993, that bra-less, fag-in-hand image is as iconic now as it was fashion-forward then. So, as I was saying, there I was, running through Zara’s Covent Garden store (late for a meeting, yet still fannying my way through The Shops), fantasising that the dress in my paws was about to summon endless invitations to parties on yachts in the South of France à la Ms Mossy in the 90s. Where the fark had this mid-life fantasy sprung from? Who knows, but it dissipated the moment I wiggled into “slithery” dress mode. Dreams dashed by reality (again), I looked like something waiting to go on the barbecue. Parking my Kate Moss delusions (for now), I bought a silver eyeshadow from Charlotte Tilbury instead.

I’d had better luck a few weeks before with a pair of fab shoes bought at Barcelona airport, in my newfound favourite shop, Uterqüe. I found a pair of shoes that were shinier than a martian's forehead. They are ACE. And, no, of course, Uterqüe has zero physical shops in the UK, but they do sell online. The mid-heel sandals, which are essentially portable disco balls, look magnifique worn with black three-quarter-length jeans and a going-out top.

Dreams dashed by reality (again), I looked like something waiting to go on the barbecue. Parking my Kate Moss delusions (for now), I bought a silver eyeshadow from Charlotte Tilbury instead

A silver, pleated midi skirt also caught my eye on my metallics quest (similar here). I immediately stuck it on with a soft grey jumper, but I reckon it would also work well with a white T-shirt (have a look at ME+EM and Kitri) and a pair of slides or plimsolls. In fact, having tried on all the shiny stuff I could find on the high street, I have discovered that the easiest way to wear it is to break it up with bits of denim, cotton, navy, white and black.

As for finding a tone that works, that’s a case of trial and error. I found rose tones suit me best, while a friend with darker hair and skin tone than me looks much better in yellowy gold. And as for “rules”, they were made for breaking, so don’t worry about mixing silver, bronze, gold and rose gold at the same time. Because here’s the thing: when it comes to colours that flatter the face, I ask thee, ‘Is there anything better than bathing in a golden glow?’ No Insta filters required, when worn in the sunshine metallic shades shimmer and bounce of the face in a way that feels less contrived than Christmas gold jumpers and naff sparkle hitting candlelight. Goddessy, glossy, shiny and a bit magical – what better time of year to show off a little, to shine a little brighter? So, “Should Stacey wear metallics?” Well, yes, if she parks the Mossy fantasies and forgets teeny silver mini dresses. As for invitations to parties on yachts in the south of France? I’m off to the PTA drinks in my shimmery midi skirt instead. I’m totally fine with that.

Click here for the summer shimmer (and what to wear with it) edit



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fashion advice
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Stacey Duguid
Should Stacey Wear

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