Gemma Tries It On: 'I'm guilty of wearing COS head-to-toe a little too often'


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I've inherited this column (and a new job: thanks Susannah!) and at first I was toying with the idea of becoming a style agony aunt, but personally I think most of those things are boring – "I have a wedding to go to, what should I wear?", etc.

So I have devised for you a 'try it on' column, where I try on clothes and accessories and tell you all about my experiences, be they successful or dismal. It could be something ridiculous that is deemed the height of cool (Maison Martin Margiela paper bag anyone?), a crazily extravagant outfit which I have the good fortune to have on loan for a shoot (a Gucci embroidered tulle gown, please), or just road-testing a new purchase (ideally something sensible). Whether mainstream or completely absurd, I plan to say it as it is – and I might even treat you to a picture or two.

So for this column's debut, I thought I'd better tell you a bit about myself. I'm a stylist and I create the fashion shoots that you see in these pages. I love dressing other people and creating a look, but I hate dressing myself – I have the same hang-ups and insecurities about my body as everyone else, which I'm sure you will become familiar with over the weeks to come. I have a big nose, but I'm not worried about that: it's me. And so is my cellulite, which I'm not quite as fond of.

Lurex, lame and Swarovski make me smile, but I'm not actually very girly. I will go so far as to say that Miu Miu is my favourite designer label (glitter shoes, £420, but I only own a few pieces because – contrary to popular opinion – we stylists aren't given our wardrobes. I really like Zara (leather bowling bag, £39.99,, but COS is my favourite shop on the high street and I'm guilty of wearing it head-to-toe a little too often (leather-sleeve dress, £89,

Now that's enough about me (unless you are interested to know that I don't enjoy exercise and am lasagne's biggest fan). I just wanted to say that I hereby promise to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth about my trying-on experiences. And you can tweet me your thoughts on @indyfashion or @gemmajonks (childhood nickname; don't ask).

This week, I've picked out three things I would like to own (see gallery). A girl can window shop, can't she?

Gemma Hayward is Fashion Editor of 'The Independent'