On style, she rules

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 29 April, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 29 April, 2012, 12:00am


I'm looking for one of those dresses that have a see-through material at the top. I've seen lots of lace, but I'm afraid it will look cheap so I'd prefer plain.

Could Be Clearer, Bowen Road

The Dictator rules: Well, CBC, I understand, but I doubt many others would. The most straightforward interpretation of your request is a dress with a sheer panel across the shoulders and sleeves. We recommend a first stop at Zara for a selection of sleeveless and long-sleeved dresses, as well as a jumpsuit (HK$599 to HK$999; Pacific Place, Admiralty, tel: 2918 1099). They all come in virginal white or cream, which tempers the suggestive nature of transparent fabrics. Japanese label Toga has created the ultimate party dress, fusing a beautiful silk strapless dress with an ultrafine sheer panel across the decollete in marigold yellow or a navy and seafoam mix (HK$9,900; Lab by Lane Crawford, Queensway Plaza, Admiralty, tel: 2118 2288). David Koma added a deep V of yellow mesh to a classic black shift with leather details (HK$17,800; Joyce, Pacific Place, tel: 2523 5944). More avant-garde design combines fine mesh with solid fabrics in T by Alexander Wang's long and short dresses (HK$2,200 to HK$3,190; Harvey Nichols, Pacific Place, tel: 3968 2668), and Simone Rocha's effortless black or white silk frocks (HK$6,199; I.T, Pacific Place, tel: 2918 0667). DKNY's cap-sleeved dress comes with sheer panels and a fabulous tiered, asymmetrical skirt (HK$4,590; Fashion Walk, Causeway Bay, tel: 2890 2799). At Chloe, the shirt dress has gone luxe with sheer shoulders and sleeves in beige silk (HK$21,880; Pacific Place, tel: 2918 1686). Or reverse the idea with a dress such as Rodier's sleeveless embroidered shift with a scalloped band of tulle at the hem (HK$2,900; Rue Madame, Lee Gardens Two, Causeway Bay, tel: 2972 2021). But if all you want is an LBD, then head to H&M (HK$299; 68 Queen's Road Central, tel: 2110 9546).

I was surprised to read that lavender is not just calming, but also an aphrodisiac. (I thought it was meant to help you sleep.) Anyway, I've looked and have only found men's colognes. Where can a single girl looking for a beau find a nice lavender perfume for ladies?

Lavender Actually, Happy Valley

The Dictator: If you think a perfume is going to get you a boyfriend, then it's time for you to wake up and smell the roses (a better known scent of seduction). I'm no aromatherapy expert, but I also think lavender has a calming effect. After looking into it, though, I found it is also meant to enhance attractiveness. The list of romantic notes supposedly includes everything from musk and tuberose to pumpkin pie and orange. Keep it simple with single-note fragrances, such as Crabtree & Evelyn's Lavender Eau de Toilette (HK$395 for 100ml; Times Square, Causeway Bay, tel: 2576 6682). Penhaligon's Lavandula mixes lavender with basil, black pepper, lily of the valley, musk, vanilla and amber (HK$1,010 and up; Harvey Nichols). Lollia's Relax eau de parfum blends lavender, bee blossom honey, white orchids and Indian amber (HK$880 for 100ml; Harvey Nichols). Many fragrances use the purple flowering plant, but don't necessarily use 'lavender' in their names. A Taste of Heaven by Kilian is a complex blend led by French lavender with notes of orange blossom, absinthe, geranium and vanilla (HK$1,948 for 50ml; Harvey Nichols). Others to sample include: Chanel's Allure Sensuelle and Acqua di Parma.