Ask Catherine: What to wear to a summer wedding, how to work a maxi skirt

These style questions and more (how to wear bright pants, is the skinny jean trend over) answered by Chatelaine's beauty and fashion editor, Catherine Franklin

skinny jean, trend, summer, fashion, style

Dear Catherine, Are there any rules to wearing the new bright pants trend? Can I wear them into the fall and winter?

A: This is definitely a trend we will see through the fall/winter season. The key to wearing any bright colour is to keep the rest of your outfit neutral or you will look like Madonna did in the ’80s. Brighter classic tones of royal blue and crimson look amazing with black or grey. I love the look of a long simple jacket or tunic over bold-coloured pants. Just remember that this is a trend that will probably go away, so don’t over do it.

Dear Catherine, What should I wear to an upcoming summer wedding? I want to look amazing and not like everyone else!

A. Best to make some inquiries and find out how formal the event is. You can get away with a casual look for an afternoon wedding, especially if it’s going to be outside and you don’t want to be more dressed up than the bride. These days “formal” means different things to different people, so my rule of thumb is to wear something that is comfortable. Remember: If you feel comfortable you’ll look great! If you’re budget conscious, it’s important to choose something that you can wear again and again. Choose a simple dress that you can “dress up” with accessories then spend your money on a great pair of shoes!


Dear Catherine, I love the look of this season’s maxi skirts but I feel lost on how to pull off this length. Do you have any styling tips?

A. There is definitely a bohemian look to a maxi that is appealing and comfortable – a perfect addition to any wardrobe for the summer. And the great thing about longer lengths is they can be very slimming. To avoid looking dowdy, you need some shape up top. The key is to show your waistline, so pair your long skirts with a fitted tank or cropped shirt. It’s a great casual day look if you choose a skirt that skims your body. If you wear a fuller skirt you risk looking like you’re wearing a bad bridesmaid dress. (Image on right: Colour block maxi skirt by ASOS).  

Dear Catherine, Are skinny jeans out of fashion now or can I still wear them? After a few years in this style, I am finding flared almost impossible to embrace.

A: Slim jeans are a classic style so if you are comfortable and you like the look then go for it. For me it’s all about the shoe. Try this season’s trend of rolled up cuffs paired with wedges – or go for the Audrey Hepburn look with classic ballerina flats. FYI: There were a lot of slim pants on the fall runways, so I will hazard a guess that the skinny-legged jean is here to stay and truthfully what else can you tuck into boots so effortlessly?