Maggie Bob Wears: Dresses For Days Like These

We all have ‘those’ days, don’t we? Your bed doesn’t want to let you go in the morning, you’ve got a headache that won’t quit, and while you’d rather spend all day in your PJs with a box set of Game of Thrones (I’m finally catching up with series 2 of this – I know, I’m way behind!) but instead you have to make yourself presentable, get in to the office and act like a grown up.

I was feeling a bit like this last week as I was a bit under the weather, and I realised what I wanted was some comfort clothing. Something smart enough for work, but comfortable and as easy to wear as pyjamas (more or less). So try these ones on for size…

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Sylvie Breton Top Pencil Dress | Lindy Bop | £22.49

A nice stretchy jersey fabric is so forgiving, but it doesn’t have to look like loungewear. This dress is chic enough that I’d happily wear it to work and doesn’t need any accessorising to work (although I’d throw a long string of pearls on if I could be bothered).

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Tropical Dress | Joe Browns | £39.95

More stretchy fabric, but this time cotton with a silky look and a fabulous print! A pair of tights and a cardigan with this and I wouldn’t know if I was curled up on the sofa or sitting through a three hour meeting.

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Green Lace Skater Dress | New Look | £22.99

Skater is my go-to dress shape for flattering comfort, and the lace overlay on this takes it to a dressy enough level for me to maintain my fabulously attired reputation at work, even on the days when I can’t be bothered.

I hope you like. And do tell me how you balance between comfort and style. I’ll be curled up in my pyjamas, waiting for your response.

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Maggie Bob Visits: 80s Club to Catwalk at V&A

For my most recent birthday (right at the end of last year) I decided to treat myself to an annual V&A Membership. I know, museum membership is a ridiculously grown-up self gift, right? But it’s great. Out of all the museums in London, the V&A is just full of pretty things I want to look at – and it gives me a reason to get out of the house every now and then. So my first act of membership card wielding madness was to jump the timed entry queues and go visit the 80s Club to Catwalk exhibition. Oh boy was this made for me!

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Spread over two floors in the central atrium of the Fashion room(s) of the museum, you get a real taster for all aspects of the decade. There’s a good mix of well dressed & accessorised pieces, and a nice use of video and music around the exhibition to add some interest. It’s very interesting to see how 80s fashion was steered by political and social events, as well as the influence it drew from earlier periods with the resurgence of the zoot suit, and classic 40s silhouettes recreated with modern fabrics and colours.

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I love how this Peacock Eye dress by Willy Brown is almost two dimensional
(image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London)

While the 80s can seem to an outside observer as a fashion anomaly, this exhibition really puts everything in place historically, making clear the evolution from the glam of the 70s to grunge in the 90s. I liked the upper floor of the exhibition which was divided in to style ‘groups’ including Goth, Fetish, Bodymap and High Camp. Of course I’m a huge fan of the New Romantic particularly and some great examples were featured here. I just love the idea of fashion as wearable art. There are pieces by some of my favourite designers – Vivienne Westwood and Malcom McLaren, John Galliano, Zandra Rhodes and of course Leigh Bowery.

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As a commission for Blitz magazine, Leigh Bowery customised this denim jacket with loads of kirby grips
(© Victoria and Albert Museum, London)

The exhibition is on until February 19th, and I highly recommend you go (I’ve been twice now!). In the meantime, I’ll be watching my Taboo DVD and dreaming up what I would wear if I was born again as a Blitz kid.

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(All images are © V&A Museum)