With a heatwave predicted, Made in the Shade is prepared. Ali has stocked up with lots of gorgeous, cool, breathable natural fibres – cottons, silks, viscose, and loads of lovely linens. “Last year the cool-to-wear linen pieces were flying out the door during the long hot summer.”
Bittermoon has brought linen stories to their collection, as has Ping Pong, with flattering dresses with pockets. Almost too good to be true, the modern natural linen-look does not need ironing. Last summer at the Beckenham boutique, it was also all about the Made in Italy collection – with romantic pieces that flatter and float over the silhouette.
As well as the much-adored local labels, such as Anne Mardell and Optimum’s cotton knits, there are Ali’s famous European faithfuls. The perfect-fitting Lisette L pants from Canada have feminine, versatile patterns and plains – unique to the label. This summer is particularly exciting, with feminine colours and prints such as turquoise, coral, navy backgrounds, ditzy-print and spring-garden florals and bold tropical blooms – and in contrast, chic and stylish plains. Colour is getting creative, as in the striking new Matisse dresses.
“Cute bomber jackets, in summery fabrics, like lace, are back in vogue – great to jazz up a dress. And most labels have introduced an easy, relaxed fitting, with styles to suit every shape,” Ali says.
All personality types and age groups will find a new favourite at Made in the Shade, 151a Colombo Street, Beckenham, open Monday-Friday 9:30am-5:30pm and Saturdays 10am-4pm, or visit