Fashion’s Term Out?

How to get the latest trends on a student budget

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For students interested in fashion, living in London can be a double-edged sword. We’re exposed to its most high end, exciting thrills at every corner, and yet whether for time or the limits of our loans, can’t indulge in them ourselves. This kind of mixed blessing was demonstrated at Vogue’s Fashion’s Night Out, 6th September 2012, when stores from Mulberry to Topshop merged fashion retail with partying.

Photo by Nicole Gillett

Delilah gave a stunning performance in Topshop, champagne and alcohol-coconuts were at hand in House of Fraser, and goodie bags, live DJs and product launches in stores such as Coast, Anya Hindmarch and Victoria’s Secret created an exhilarating atmosphere. Such excitement, of course, was partially the result of the nature of the event: fleeting, free access to the world of the glitterati. Ironically, the more enjoyable such occasions are for the mere mortals who didn’t grace Mulberry’s guestlist, the more inaccessible high fashion will typically be on a day-to-day basis.

But we need not enjoy living in a fashion capital vicariously. In fact on the 6th, Miss Selfridge brought in the ladies of Clapham North’s lovely sewing café ‘Sew Over It’ ( to demonstrate the application of black lace, metal studs and diamante onto jackets and jeans. These inspiring tutorials took moments, and were a reminder of the delight of DIY…



 Studs and military buttons can be found in high street haberdashery sections (ie John Lewis) or, if you’ve time to do browsing justice, amazing military accessories can be discovered in London’s best markets (ie Camden, Brick Lane, Spitalfields). Topshop has you suited and booted, ready for the military trend whatever your budget.


Buy fabrics cheap from Brick Lane Market and cutaway shapes before tacking onto shorts, jumpers, or collars. This intricate, deceptively simple customisation is reversible and can be made even quicker by using a piece of pretty gold ribbon. If you can’t resist a worthy splurge, Zara have taken cues from Balmain in the form of these stunning embroidered boots.





Get the gothic look at a steal by going animal friendly.

Leather effect slim trousers from Forever 21 are only £19.75, while Zara’s latest collection features this faux leather waistcoat at £35.99. Black is back, but get this one in crimson and voila; two trends for the price of one.








Wine and Oxblood

Rich burgundytones are on trend, but you don’t necessarily need a new item of clothing (although Miss Selfridge’s gorgeous new outerwear collection begs to differ). The more frugal among us can turn to Superdrug, where Essie’s Nail Colour in ‘Bordeaux’ is £7.99, and Collection 2000 Colour Pout Lipstain is £4.99.


If you’ve not time for DIY, is irresistibly browse-able – see especially their collars collection. Not forgetting one of the most important lessons we can take from LFW: London is a city of opportunity, so be on the lookout at all times and take advantage. Even if only to say you’ve been there but couldn’t afford the t-shirt.