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fashion & beauty Now you don’t have to marry a prince to dress like royalty By Lisa Haynes


From catwalk to high street, Jenny Packham makes her occasion wear mark at Debenhams with her new No.1 Jenny Packham range.


On the same day Alice Temperley announced her upcoming Somerset label for John Lewis (due September), Jenny Packham launched her glamorous No.1 line at Debenhams. Usually debuted on the international catwalks and reserved for red carpets and the uber-rich, these designer diffusion lines make dressing like a princess accessible to everyone. “The No.1 Jenny Packham collection means that even more women will be able to enjoy our work, to feel glamorous and confident in the way they look,” Packham says of her high street debut. Expect rails of embellished gowns and fairytale frocks with an array of glittering accessories to match.


Packham parade If you haven’t already heard of British designer Jenny Packham, you’re sure to have seen her work. She describes her signature style as “glamorous, alluring and indulgent” and the stars evidently agree. Red carpets the world over are graced with her elegant designs flaunted by the likes of Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet and Jennifer Aniston.


Jenny Packham was also the go-to label when Kate Middleton dazzled in a blush pink embellished gown at a charity gala dinner last summer. Having raided her archives, Packham points out the similarities between her new range and her A-lister creations: “My favourite piece in the Debenhams No.1 collection is a little black lace dress similar to the one worn by Cameron Diaz a few years ago. “I have taken elements from our collection that hopefully will appeal to any woman who loves glamour.”


Summer chic No.1 Jenny Packham at Debenhams has made a timely arrival for occasionwear season. With a summer calendar of weddings, christenings, or days at the races looming, playing dress-up has never been higher on the fashion agenda. Packham describes this summer’s fashion mood as “feminine, striking and bold”.


Exquisite bridal gowns are another string to Packham’s designer bow so it’s little wonder her No.1 collection of 19 dresses offer fashion-forward options for bridesmaids and wedding guests too. “Many occasions hold a special significance in a woman’s life and each event is important for different reasons,” Packham explains. “The one thing that remains constant throughout is our desire to be noticed, to be admired and feel flattered by the attention our presence brings. I design every dress with this in mind whether it is for a wedding, a party or a red carpet event.”


The Jenny Packham label may be synonymous with partywear and evening dressing but the designer has gone to town on eye-catching accessories for her No.1 line. Jewellery magpies will love the baroque bling and pearl and crystal pieces. Meanwhile shoe aficionados will be spoilt for choice with the corsage-trim sandals and diamante detail peep-toes. And then there’s the must-have sparkling clutches and wedding-friendly headpieces.


Packham reveals her personal favourite outfit extras from the No.1 collection are the glitter envelope clutches and jewelled collars. “A great necklace can transform a little black dress and I am also a great fan of cuffs as they seem to work well with our styles,” she says. “Dare to try something different and invest in the total look if you can - killer heels and a great clutch to accompany the hot dress.”


No.1 Jenny Packham at Debenhams deco crystal clutch, £100. (PA Photo/Handout)


12 Life Begins www.lifebeginsmagazine.com


Glittery & Sparkly


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