2014 is proving a lucky year for me, travel wise – I’ve visited Australia, Switzerland and France and have subsequently caught the travel bug: I find it exciting to visit new places and immerse myself in another culture. It’s a very fun, easy way of learning (I think that society should place more value on the student gap year) and I’m lucky to have visited lots of amazing places over the years. The older I get, the more I appreciate the destination and I think that it is this newfound appreciation that makes me want to see as much as I can in my lifetime. Not just places, but people and different lifestyles and undiscovered local secrets. Of course, it’s fun to share any such experiences with someone special, but it doesn’t matter if you go it alone; the world is seen through our own eyes, literally and metaphorically speaking.
Of course, with age comes another appreciation, this time for holiday clothes that are chic rather than flesh baring. I find that I now prefer less obvious “holiday” clothes and instead, choose items that can be worn in British summers or as part of my existing wardrobe. Who needs a holiday wardrobe that never sees the light of day, and that needs updating every summer? It’s such a waste of time, energy and clothing. These days, I would choose an oversize linen shirt over a sheer kaftan; a midi jersey dress over a denim mini; perhaps, even, a retro swimsuit over a flimsy bikini. I suppose I like the idea of dressing for the culture and the destination rather than for the sun. Think Valentino’s SS14 collection, the prints of which look tribal, the embroidery Navajo. The collection was actually inspired by opera, which is evident through the silhouettes, styling and accessories, but Valentino design duo Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccoli have also captured the “global traveller” vibe brilliantly. It’s jet-set, but not glamorous and rather, it’s stylish and inspiring. It takes me to North Africa or perhaps old Russia. Where does it take you?