The idea of peeling off the cashmere and heat-tech to try on a bikini or a beach kaftan right now is enough to make us all come out in goose-bumps. But if you are among the 11 million Brits estimated by a recent Halifax survey to be taking a winter-sun holiday between now and March, the current Siberian-style temperatures are unlikely to deter you from heading to the shops to scoop up some new swim and beachwear.
You may, of course, have splashed the cash on something sensational for partying: a new frock, a pair of ankle-skimming trousers or a tulle skirt and a sleek tuxedo (inspired, of course, by last week's partywear). If that is the case, you will be urgently seeking the perfect shoes, bag, bangle, cuff, earrings and necklace to accompany them.
With the shops full of satin, sequins and Swarovski crystals, achieving precisely the right level of fabulousness for those Chanucah and New Year's Eve parties isn't easy. We find the perfect, low-key pieces for real life partying…
In a perfect world, it would be simple to find the perfect party piece: an artless little frock, trousers or skirt paired with a stunning top, that say: "I'm a clued-up fashion bunny, aware of trend hotness, but have not taken leave of my style sense in a bid to look über-glam."
When you see the editors of British Vogue and the fashion director of the Daily Telegraph, plus at least a dozen other, high-profile members of the fashion commentariat, clad in fur (Alexandra Shulman in a Marc Jacobs black coat with mink collar; Hilary Alexander in Chanel mink hood), it is a sure sign that fur is having a moment.
Is there a fashionista on the planet who does not know that high street chain H&M's latest designer collaboration is with Lanvin, one of the most influential fashion brands of the 21st century?
It means that some of the most desirable and exquisite garments and accessories from the sketch-pad of Lanvin's artistic and creative director, Alber Elbaz (left), will be on the high street at prices not much higher than a regular Lanvin client would expect to pay for a rocket salad and a glass of Mumm at Sketch.
This winter sees endless shoe and boot options, from killer heel shoe-boots to wearable wedges and ballerina flats to brogues. Whether you want to be pared-down, ravishingly retro or merely funky, we’ve found the hottest footwear.
Is it the visually ravishing vistas of fabulously frocked and jewelled women, or the vicarious pleasure of watching ubridled consumption of cigarettes and whisky that makes US series Mad Men, so compellingly viewable? Whatever the answer - and I suspect it will vary depending on your gender and your age - the BBC4 series, has led to a late-50s/early 1960s fashion revival that, frankly, seemed unthinkable even five years ago.