First, a confession: I’m not a fan of going out on actual Valentine’s Day. A pricey meal eaten alongside a dozen other couples seems more contrived than cosily romantic (and babysitting is a nightmare). That said, if I were going out, I’d definitely want to be wearing the Christopher Esber black dress that stylist Lill Jenner has suggested for a fancy date.
“This is a modern version of the little black dress,” she says. “Cut-outs always feel a bit revealing for me, but this style is chic and the heavy ribbed fabric makes it really comfortable.”
Here, she’s selected three different looks for Valentine’s, whether you’re doing Date Night, catching drinks and a movie, or staying home for a romantic and reasonably priced meal. And yes, we know we’re a week early – this way, you have plenty of time to plan ahead.
Relaxed date night
For Lill, the hero of this look is the Saint Laurent shirt – but be warned, it is eye-wateringly expensive. “It’s a beautiful, classic piece and you can wear it buttoned-up and sophisticated, or loose and sexy,” she says. We also really love the Albus Lumen linen pant, which has raw edges along the pockets and outer leg.
When you’re going out-out
Australian ready-to-wear designer Christopher Esber has a reputation for creating original, well-cut pieces with sex appeal, and this dress, above, is a great example of why. “It’s polished and elegant,” says Lill, “and works well with this 70s-style Aquazzura heel – although any strappy hell would look great.
“Similarly, the onyx ring from Marysia is a beautiful cocktail piece, but you could wear whatever special jewellery you already own.” Former Country Road creative director Sophie Holt is now at Oroton and you can see her relaxed yet refined touch in this stylish black bag, Lill adds.
Staying in but dressing up
“This sheer blouse is feminine and romantic – and with that Agent Provocateur lingerie underneath, it feels a bit sexy, too,” says Lill. Add a delicate lapis necklace from Lucy Folk and a pair of relaxed cropped jeans, and this is a definite step-up from our everyday loungewear.