Saturday, 15 January 2011


With the imminent release of the Darren Aronofsky directed Black Swan, starring Natalie Portman as a tortured ballerina clad in Rodarte designed costumes, ballet inspired clothing is currently at the forefront of the fashion consciousness. Tulle, feathers, pleats and beautiful shades of nude were featured in a number of spring collections. The aptly named ‘Ballet Class’ collection designed by Hannah MacGibbon for Chloe is particularly fitting for any girl who has dreamed of being a ballerina. MacGibbon’s graceful collection of pleated mid length skirts in taupe silk chiffon teamed with finely pleated bodies and elegant ballet pumps, formed a refined alternative to this seasons seventies trend. The sheer flowing skirts and neutral palette (particularly the pleated taupe one shoulder gown) formed the perfect off duty ballet dancer look; a great improvement on the blue leotards and pink tights the majority of us wore as children. An advantage of channelling a ballerina is that it can be achieved easily by tying your hair in an elegant bun and wearing delicate layers of nudes and silks. American Apparel’s Chiffon Double Layered Full Length Skirt (£52) in bone would give the wearer the grace of a dancer and a cropped cardigan could be added for an elegant touch. Ballet pumps are a classic item that are easy to find, if you cannot afford Chloe’s beauties, French Sole do the best reasonably priced pumps and Topshop’s nude pair are a bargain at £16. Portraying the refined elegance of the dancer is sure to make the wearer feel feminine and graceful, despite not having custom made Rodarte costumes or silk Pointe shoes (as an ex dancer these HURT), the ballerina is emerging as a chic, unlikely muse for SS11.

Harriet Tisdall

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