Softer focus: High street hit-list

What are the new season's best affordable buys? Gemma Hayward reveals her high street hit-list

Now more than ever, the high street has its finger on the pulse. No longer only interested in supplying wardrobe staples and designer 'homages', brands are increasingly developing their own signatures and adding unique twists to catwalk trends.

With rising numbers of designer collaborations, support for new design talent and involvement in London Fashion Week, the UK's high street offers the most comprehensive collection of affordable fashion in the world.

And now the sun is finally starting to shine, we can emerge from our SAD-induced slump and actually start to plan what we'll be wearing for the next few months. Good news for anyone who's sick of last season's fierce, studded, biker look; there's a more gentle mood to spring/summer. From fresh florals to faded denim and natural coloured leather and suede, this season is altogether more relaxed. Here's the lowdown on the key spring pieces from our favourite high street brands.

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