Prim and proper: Moschino Cheap & Chic, £253,


Pink? Pearls? Looks pretty old school to me.

In itself this prim and proper style from Moschino Cheap & Chic (£253,, above) inhabits nostalgic/retro territory. That needn't be a bad thing, but if you are looking to wear it in a way that feels bang up-to-date, then it's a question of simple styling.

OK, what's going to give it the requisite edge?

First, you should wear a cardi like this as a top rather than as a cover-up for bingo wings. No Mad Men cleavage here; modernity demands that one button it right on up to the neck. The twinset goes commando, if you will.

Yikes. Take it I don't have to go commando too?

Take it as you will, but one thing you do need from the waist down is a pair of jeans. Slim, just to the ankle. Plus some flats – a loafer or slipper style is good.

Still think it's a little on the saccharine side…

If pale rose and pearls is never going to work for you, try Zara's lace "jacket" – despite the name, it's basically a round-neck cotton cardi with a lace insert up the sleeves, available in black and dark red (£15.99,