In at the deep end: How to make a splash with your wardrobe

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

You may not be at one with the waves, but your wardrobe can still make a splash, says Gemma Hayward

It's not always a good thing when designers take inspiration from a sporting pursuit (wedge-heeled trainers, anyone?) but this season the creatives have looked towards the beach, the waves and even the wonders of the deep for their latest collections.

The trend for scuba and surf wear first made a splash a few months ago, with the launch of the cruise collections. Stella McCartney's oversized shirts and T-shirt dresses are decorated with tropical prints fit for wear on a Hawaiian beach. Alexander McQueen's McQ has opted for a body-conscious silhouette with skin-tight leggings, mini dresses and jumpsuits finished with zips galore and engineered print stretch tops, all of which wouldn't look out of place on very stylish diving boat.

Alexander Wang and Richard Nicholl, too, have flirted with the trend. Michael Kors has taken a literal view: though made of comfortable stretch wool-crepe, dresses and high-necked swimwear in classic wet-suit patterns are cinched at the waist with a diver-style clip belt.

Swimwear designer Lisa Marie Fernandez has similarly made the most of bringing underwater style to the surface. Her neoprene designs represent scuba chic at its finest. From skimpy metallic bikinis to sleeved, high-necked swimsuits and more that take their inspiration from rash vests, this collection has something for all and the designer makes a killer Lycra dress while she's at it. This season, Fernandez has also collaborated with Peter Pilotto, creating swimwear in more neoprene that showcases the London label's signature digital prints.

The scuba look has of course trickled down to the more affordable high street. All the usual suspects have gone for beach chic in some way or another. River Island has great printed leggings, Asos's cut-away swimsuits are spot on and Hobbs' "surf" dresses trimmed with sporty black piping detail are worth hunting down.

As far as beauty is concerned, it's not difficult to fake the beach goddess look away from the shores. Spritz on Bumble & Bumble's "surf spray" for textured, full-bodied "just-been-for-a-swim-but-I-still-look-great" hair. Wet-look colour for the eyes also adds to the look: MAC's Paint Pots and Laura Mercier's Cream Eye Colour both give the eye a glowing sheen worthy of a mermaid.

Leave the snorkels and surfboards at home, however. The only accessories to be concerned with are bags, shoes and belts. The latter is important to enhance the waist in second-skin dresses. For bags, oversized clutches in bright neon hues cut a dash, all with the obligatory zip fastening.

Flip-flops should be avoided: the look is far to up-tempo for flats. Instead, go for a high-heeled sandal with multi-straps, and make sure it comes in a bold, block-colour too. Oh, and it almost goes without saying, these are for the dance floor, not the sand...

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment
Reimagined: Gwyneth Paltrow and Toni Collette in the film adaptation of Jane Austen's Emma
Arts and Entertainment
Jesuthasan Antonythasan as Dheepan
Cannes 2015Dheepan, film review
Richard Blair is concerned the trenches are falling into disrepair
newsGeorge Orwell's son wants to save war site that inspired book
Arts and Entertainment
The pair in their heyday in 1967
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

    £40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

    Guru Careers: Software Developer

    £35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

    SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

    £18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

    Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

    £25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

    Day In a Page

    Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

    Abuse - and the hell that follows

    James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
    Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

    It's oh so quiet!

    The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
    'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

    'Timeless fashion'

    It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
    If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

    Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

    Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
    New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

    Evolution of swimwear

    From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
    Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

    Sun, sex and an anthropological study

    One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
    From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

    Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

    'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
    'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

    Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

    This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
    Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

    Songs from the bell jar

    Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
    How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

    One man's day in high heels

    ...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
    Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

    Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

    Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
    The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

    King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

    The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
    More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

    End of the Aussie brain drain

    More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
    Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

    Can meditation be bad for you?

    Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
    Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

    Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

    Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine