Cut-outs and virginal white - is this a trend?

There seems to be a lot of peekaboo action in the shops, with bits and bobs visible through holes and cut-outs . Is this actually a trend or are they just scrimping on fabric?

No, you’re right, we’ve spotted it too. You hone in on a garment with which you could potentially have a meaningful relationship, only to find that there’s a bloody big hole in it, a deliberate one, one that spotlights a bare naked part of your body that does not need spotlighting. Ruined, humiliated once again by your torso’s physical dissimilarity to Shakira’s, regardless of how many probiotics you eat.

Photograph: Getty Images

If one spends a large percentage of one’s life in personal training, one is not going to hide one’s light under a bushel, or, indeed, a mumu. The cut-out either says, I’m so rich and buff that I will hit this red carpet wearing mostly air, or, I am orange, and I will score tonight!

So is this one the preserve of the rich and the young? Not really, as ever, how deep you dive is entirely up to you, and, indeed, where you place your hole. This trend is one of equal opportunity, the hole or cut-out can be of any size, from the sporty perforation of aertex to a full-on gaping vortex. Take Philip Lim’s Hyper Mesh top at Samui, a veritable aertex on steroids.


At Chloe, electric blue hyper-mesh become an action over-layer. Danielle Romeril has become known for her luxe sportswear and comes into her own with this trend, this week covering a trend collision, where mesh meets white. See below.

I love white in summer. I love the idea of going head-to-toe virginal. Please point out the pros and cons


White can be many things, mostly not fashion. To understand the landscape, let’s assess the provenance before prescribing it’s potential.

Close your eyes and think about the power of white.

Lauren Bacall in her beautiful wide-leg swishy trousers has a lot to answer for; she represents understated ease and grace and made the white trouser a badge of honour in widespread suburban enclaves. But replace the willowy stature and swishiness with visible pants and linen and the effect is apt to lose on cinematic drama. Be careful out there, and also remember to check your rear-view mirror on a dangerous bend. But Lauren Bacall wasn't the only icon to wear white, Marilyn Monroe was probably even more famous for her airborne white dress in the Seven-Year Itch, yet somehow that doesn't seem to have caught on in the golf club.

White is wonderful, but it is tricky. It is a magnifying glass for one’s silhouette and one’s spillages. No wet-wipe solutions here, the white wearer must become a rarefied creature that no other living thing can sully. That rather wipes out the mothers among you – or does it? Go away, I’m resting. White is often more than just a choice of colour, it is a statement of intent. And given that, quite often, it is wrapped up in the tradition of momentous occasions, our preconceptions are deeply felt.

When you think about weddings and communions, the pure and virginal whiteness combined with the glare of centre stage seems borderline perverse. Look at me; don’t look at me.The wearing of white is now, thankfully, about much more than celluloid and sacraments. Fashion has claimed it, rinsing it through a cycle of cool that makes it no less untouchable but supremely more desirable. When

Tom Ford

says white is on, something big is happening. Worn with mirrored aviators on his runway, a post-modern ice maiden was born. Hot Laura Jayne Halton’s perfect white cotton dress, available from her eponymous website, is guaranteed to upstage any communion upstart.

Or keep it low key and simple with J Brand jeans €285 from Seagreen. Finally white jeans outgrow Liz Hurley.