Photographs do not do some clothes justice and this is one such garment. So you will just have to take my word for it that this dress is unbelieveably beautiful. It's made of cotton jersey, is wonderfully fluid, and is one of the most alluring pieces in the MaxMara spring/summer collection. MaxMara make lovely clothes that are invariably simple and well cut; pieces that will remain in your wardrobe for many seasons. With its very low v-neck (which comes way below the cleavage line, so no large bosoms), hip belt, and two side slits, this dress is elitist - and not just in price. It is designed for a tall, slim person, who wafts. But there are some of them about, and good luck to them. AB

Cotton jersey dress, pounds 735, MaxMara in white only from MaxMara, 32 Sloane Street, SW1 and 153 New Bond Street, W1. Tel: 0171-287 3434.


Velvet jeans are so much nicer than leather jeans - which flatter so few. They are also ideal for this time of year, being smart yet warm. I have searched high and low for a better pair and haven't found any so these get the prix d'excellence. They are from Boden, the mail order company. They come in black, brown or bottle green and cost pounds 65 (or three pairs for pounds 174) in sizes 10-14. They have an unfinished inside leg of 34in, but for an extra pounds 6 they can be hemmed to your exact specificiation (see their catalogue for details). Velvet jeans can be worn to more places than denim ones, and everyone keeps coming up and stroking your thighs, so be careful. AB

Velvet jeans, pounds 65, Boden. Call 0181-964 2662 for a catalogue.