You’re in the khaki now

Do you ever have those moments, after you’ve got all dolled up and left the house, when you see some blimmin’ chick on the bus/tube/train (delete as appropriate) wearing something so simple and gorgeous you just want to a) go home and get changed, b) head straight to Topshop to buy a copycat outfit, or c) rip it off her and wear it yourself? Thus far, I’ve managed to avoid the prison term by opting for ‘a’ or ‘b’, but last week I saw a young lady looking so hot to trot I almost succumbed to ‘c’.

This lady I speak of was doing khaki. And she was doing it well. I’ve blogged previously about my love of military fashion and the colour is a big part of that passion. The girl I spied last week was wearing khaki trousers and a khaki top, so well matched I had to stare at her crotch to check if it was a jumpsuit (it wasn’t, but that prison term is looking increasingly likely).

Then she’s only gone and done the ultimate thing – paired her gorgeous khaki wares with a faded denim jacket and studded pumps. There is just something so wholly irresistable about the pairing of khaki and denim; it’s soft, it’s stylish with a boyish overtone, it’s soooo sexy. Even this lass’s chunky tribal necklace didn’t lose her any fashion marks. I was fair drooling over her.

I love being inspired by the fashion I see out and about – and I don’t mind telling you, I would be dang chuffed to think that any of my own looks have encouraged a Single White Female-esque reaction from a member of the general public.

After spying the Khaki Queen on the tube I went all out on a khaki frenzy, buying this cute top in the Topshop sale, this casual mink maxi from Warehouse (which I proceeded to dribble mayonaise down, requiring a delicate stain removal operation that I haven’t got around to yet) and, best of all, this embroidered back khaki dress from Red Herring which I teamed with Oasis’ leather weave brown belt and sported for the piece I wrote on the calorie-busting benefits of sex and shopping in The Independent this week (as you can see from this pic, the outfit looks OK, my hair looks tragic – blaming the humidity, my expression is deranged).

Khaki is perfect at this point in the season because it really does run through to the autumn – and my prediction is for a khaki explosion come September 2010. Although summer bargains are tempting, the best khaki pieces may not be on the sale rail. Consider them an investment and choose dresses, tops and trousers that can be layered, acessorised and customised to fire on all cylinders until bonfire night.

A khaki jumpsuit is top of my ‘to buy’ list right now and I’m leaning towards this embellished number from Topshop which is so going to annoy my other half with it’s generous bum creases, but will look boss with a chunky cardi and gladiators when the sun isn’t so strong.

Khaki pants are also must-have and you can choose from hundreds including Topshop’s utilities, Miss Selfridge’s peg legs, and Uniqlo’s tapered trousers.

Shirts and tops are equally abundant but amongst my faves are the basic vest by ASOS, Whistles’ embroidered peasant blouse and the lace beaded crop vest I searched high and low for in Oxford Circus (and almost cried over with glee when they found it for me in the storeroom).

A khaki maxi oozes style and my fave at the mo is this halter neck from ASOS. Shoes are also essential and you’ve gotta love Kurt Geiger’s Canada.

To match your nails up to the look, I’d recommend the Nails Inc greige collection (see what they did there?) which is another summer-to-fall transitional purchase (that actually sounded posh, didn’t it).

A denim jacket is compulsory if you want to kick khaki’s ass. I am willing to confess that I splashed out a whopping £12 on a bleached one from Primark. If you’ve got a bit more class – and expendable income – do it properly with a faded Levi’s Rider.

Now you can roll on the grass without worrying too much about stains, and when other women gaze dreamily at you on public transport, you’ll have me to thank. De nada.

Ahh, the lov
ely Jen looks aces in khaki

Johanna Payton shopping photo taken by Susannah Ireland.
Used with kind permission.

Written by Johanna Payton