Frock Star

Next week is officially summer. Dress season is upon us. And although the weather hasn't been doing a very convincing job so far, I’m an optimist at heart. So I’ve spoken to some of my fave B’ham women about the frock they’ve got their eyes on the season, whether it’s for a wedding, lunch with mates or you know, just a casual Mediterranean sojourn.


Rida Suleri-Johnson is a B’ham-based creative, storyteller, photographer and serial Instagrammer, by her own admission. She’s basically Insta royalty. Her summer dress pick is this carrot-coloured, tropical print maxi from Armedangels (£119). She loves the vibrant colour, the floatyness, and the gorge ethics of this sustainable brand. Tick, tick, tick.


This orange print looks tropical and tasty af and the perf choice for a sunny (hopefully), relaxed (definitely) lunch with friends. Go hard on the casj angle and ensure optimum comfort at all times with some classic black Adidas Gazelles. Add an extra pop of colour with this cross body bag from Kin. Finally, trick your lunch mates into thinking you've made a bigger effort than you really have with black hoops from JQ-based Made Jewellery and a swipe of Charlotte Tilbury's dark berry Hel's Bell's lipstick.


Donna Howell is an interiors stylist and creative director. Her minimal Instagram account and house are things of my dreams. As is her summer dress pick, this beauty from Cos for £79. She describes the voluminous cotton dress as her perfect summer number thanks to the fitted square neckline, wider straps and airy skirt. I'm sold.


The full-bodied shape of this dress has a south of France thing going on, so the whole look is going all in. To contrast with the darkness of the dress, team it with some lighter colours and textures, like this crochet shopper from Arket. Whistles have happily fulfilled the "strappy shoes but make them comfy" brief with these leather, block sole sandals that'll see you through your morning walk to the boulangerie. Finish off the lewk and protect yourself from that hot hot Riviera heat with a sun hat from Whistles, and Quay Australia sunglasses.


Josefina Martinez is the designer behind B'ham-based jewellery brand and local craft market A-lister Atypical Thing. Like Donna, she's also got her eye on a classic from Cos this summer, but a chalky green shirt dresswith long tie-belt. Josefina pictures this crisp cotton dress worn with heels as an ideal wedding guest outfit.


The pale green is the basis for this pastel-inspired ensemble, ideal for all those summer nuptials you've been invited to. A clutch from Whistles is a reliable addition to any dressy look, and this nude, croc version goes with our pale-coloured theme. Layer another pastel shade with sky blue mules from Monki and add a bold pop of colour with a pink Pearl Pop lip from Mac. Understated bling comes from the sterling silver circle earrings that you can join the waitlist for here. Congratulations, you're wedding ready.


Allison Sadler, owner of The People Shop in Kings Heath and general spreader of joy is lusting after this gorge striped kaftan from Arket (£55). I know Allison has a soft spot for that there Cornwall (who doesn't, tbh), so for this look I've created a super chilled, lil bit retro, coastal outfit.


The 70s look of the kaftan is crying out to be worn with appropriately retro accessories. These Le Specs sunnies are dark tortoiseshell acetate with gold-coloured arms. Salt Water sandals are comfortable and in-keeping with the Cornwall vibe. Accessorise with assorted bracelets from Oliver Bones. Sling a big woven straw bag over your shoulder to carry everything you need for your jaunt to the beach.