Fashion notes: Don’t let lazy dressing drag you down

It happens to the best of us. That weekend-morning moment when we're running late, need to leave the house in the next five minutes, and haven't given a thought to what we're going to wear. We resort to pulling out our favourite pair of jeans, and when we can't find a nice shirt that matches the way we want it to, we despairingly throw on a white T-shirt. The first pair of shoes we can get our hands on are worn, plus the sunglasses lying on the countertop, and last night's handbag. Subsequently, the whole day is spent in an unexciting, uninspiring outfit. This in turn affects our mood – we tend to get gloomy and slightly snappy. Trust me – when a girl isn't overjoyed with her outfit, she will regret her styling choices all day, and she certainly won't be a fun person to be around.

The thing is, we’re not making a mistake when we decide on a drab pair of jeans and a plain old tee. We slip up when we surrender to the ordinary and show a lack of enthusiasm with our hopeless choices when it comes to accessories.

Don’t get intimidated into fitting into a certain theme or prototype. Today, it’s possible to combine trends, which shows more character than an all-girlie or all-punky look. So yes, you can wear a baby-­pink floral scarf with your chunky platform brogues. Mix your feminine pieces with masculine influences for a unique and creative touch.

Start with your bag, and build from there. Unless you require a roomy tote bag for the day’s errands, try out a small cross-body bag. A perky coral, muted yellow or periwinkle purse slung across one shoulder, or diagonally across your torso, will do. Then, depending on the weather, pick out your ­outerwear – be it a simple, light cardigan or a heavy-duty leather jacket. Since the base of your outfit is likely to be plain, don’t be afraid to go for a bold print – one that you hardly wear because of its in-your-face pattern. Whether it’s an outlandish leopard print or a vintage floral piece, wear it conventionally, over your shoulders or tied around your waist, if it’s thin enough.

Shoes really shouldn’t be a problem, but deciding what footwear to wear is what trips us up most of the time when putting an outfit together. If you leave it until last, it should be straightforward. Just look in the mirror and decide which shoes go best with your look. If nothing from your collection of flats, sandals and wedges is looking quite right, then opt for the obvious: trainers. Put on your beat-up Chuck ­Taylors or the Nike trainers from your gym bag, even if the rest of your look is quite feminine. If you’ve seen any street-style images from fashion weeks, then you will know that a pretty printed jacket and mannish shoes can actually make a hit outfit.

Finally, my favourite part: the jewels. If you’ve gone with neutral colours and classic silhouettes, have fun with the accessories. Clip a bow into your hair, wear dangly earrings, throw on a chunky necklace or pile on the bracelets (but don’t do all of that at once). I’m not condoning a carefree coupling of all of your accessories – pick and choose just a few that you think will complete your look. One or two will suffice.

All of your outfit components don’t need to be things that you always see pictured together in magazines. Mix it up, and make each outfit your own, even when all you have to start with are jeans and a tee.