Matalan has kindly sent me the summer lookbook for 2011, which I was absolutely delighted to receive. Although I'm lacking a Matalan store which is accessible near university, it's one of the first places I go when I'm home. I feel that Matalan is often over looked as a place for fashionable pieces - it always keeps up to date with the key fashion staples for the new season and always has a wide selection of jewellery, all for affordable prices. So what do they have to offer for the summer season?
- 'Be beau. Inspired by key looks and trends straight from the catwalk, it's a constant newness of fresh, sexy and feminine pieces. This season will be sexy and flirty with our new floral print playsuits and full 50's dresses'. The description of the new range for women is spot on. I'm already lusting over the floral playsuits, priced reasonably at around £18. The key pieces for me? The £14 floral shorts which are going to be very versatile. Accessorised with a simple vest top and flowered headband in the look book, they'll be very easy to dress down for the day and dress up for those fun nights out.
- 'Et vous. Sophisticated and femininine is the key message from Et Vous. Tribal spice is a smart daywear story using beautiful prints and structured frills combined with a palette of khaki, stone and orange'. Anyone who has been reading the magazines lately know that Matalan have struck gold with the two main trends for the new season - tribal prints and the colour orange. I'm particularly impressed with the high waisted hareem trouser in stone accessorised with tribal bangles - all for a cool £26.
- 'Papaya. Embracing the happy up beat feel of summer. Papaya covers looks from festival favourites to embellished maxi dresses. As well as our strong nod to seventies, we too are embracing the 50's silhouette of full skirts'. The Papaya range has always been a favourite of mine, and I've had much success with some of their key wardrobe staples in the past. They're offering a bit of everything for the new season, from flirty florals to sophistication in the form of a dipped hem blouse. The navy duffle jacket over peg trousers is easily my favourite look though, perfect for all summer.
- Matalan's key shapes. The majority of the dress shapes are tucked in at the waist with a variety of neck lines and prints. It's great to see, as the pinned in waist will suit all shapes, rather than just catering to the smaller sizes. The wide flared leg trouser has been seen on a fair amount of celebrities recently, and if you're brave, Matalan are offering loud floral prints alongside normal jeans.
- The shoe range. Floral wedges, statement platforms and chunky espadrilles - there is something for everyone. They've updated the last season clog by adding a floral twist and updated the gladiator with fringing. I'm a huge shoe lover, and would quite happily take the whole range home, especially the floral wrap gladiators for £14.
So what do I think? My flat mate summed up my thoughts on the range when she just walked in and said 'is that Matalan? I wouldn't have guessed in a million years'. The summer range really feels like Matalan has upped their game to keep up with the on trend fashions. Although I may be steering clear of the floral flared trousers, I'm falling in love with the floral pumps and playsuits. I'm impressed. You'll definitely be seeing some Matalan items in my parcel deliveries from now on.