En Brogue In Full: dressed up denim

The casual girl’s ideal formalwear.

I’ve always been into denim. I mean, who isn’t? I remember being about 14 and obsessed with Levi’s, but in the early Nineties on the Isle of Wight, they weren’t very easy to get hold of in my size, so I got my Mum to use the back pockets off an old pair of my Dad’s and stitch them to a skirt I already had, before dying the whole lot black in the bath. We even went to the trouble of hemming it with yellow cotton. Inventive or what?! And it was at that moment that I realised the joy not of bootleg Levi’s, but black denim. That skirt was my go-to teenage dressed up look, and it served me well for years.

Hannah Rochell Photographed by Zac Frackelton

Finery London dress, £69 reduced from £139 in the sale (finerylondon.com); Jaeger leopard clutch, sold out (for similar at £49, jaeger.co.uk); Rogue Matilda ‘Tootsie’ shoes, £99 reduced from £135 in the sale (roguematilda.com)

PHOTOGRAPHY: ZAC FRACKLETON

Fast forward 25 years (GAH!), and I’m still using black denim when I need to look smart. If it’s not a pair of skinny black jeans instead of trousers, it’s my latest discovery: the black denim dress. This one from Finery London is a genius Japanese-style design, which strips away the casual nature of denim and elevates it to a much smarter status. It’s a lovely fit with a obi belt and generous sleeves, and in a brilliant addition, it’s currently in the sale for just £69. Bargain!

READ MORE: WHAT TO WEAR TO A WEDDING WHEN YOU DON’T WANT TO WEAR HEELS

Hannah Rochell Photographed by Zac Frackelton

Of course, the easy thing to do to dress up your denim would be to sling on a pair of heels, so if you’re opting for flats you need to be a little more inventive. My gorgeous Rogue Matilda mules have sold out, but look for something similar that’s sleek and elegant if you’re wearing your dressed up denim to a formal event. Of course, this dress would look fantastic with white sneakers (what doesn’t?!) or Birkenstocks if you’re going for a more casual vibe.

READ MORE: THE SHOES I DESIGNED THAT ARE BEING AUCTIONED FOR CHARITY

Hannah Rochell Photographed by Zac Frackelton

I’m considering wearing this dress to a wedding in October (it’s a toss up between this and my blue and white stripe dress from Baukjen), perhaps with the addition of a slick of red lipstick. This is the last En Brogue In Full for a few weeks – I’m taking a summer break until the new season hits the shops – but I’d still love to hear what you think of this look, and also if you have any requests for subjects you’d like me to tackle for the new season. Leave comments below!

 

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