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Swing Into the Twenties

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Synonymous with glitz, glamour and decadence, the Roaring Twenties are the perfect antidote to modern day minimalism and the recession.

Recent seasons have dictated the rise of sensible investment buys, but finally there's a chance to throw back and dress up as SS12 was a toxic homage to the Jazz Age.

The catwalks were awash with references of the era; think intricate beading, dropped waists, fringing and lashings of provocative spirit. For a masterclass in achieving this certain 'flapper' appeal, look to The Great Gatsby's Daisy Buchanan, poster girl of the decade.

New York kicked the clock back with Marc Jacob's 'dancehall' girls while Ralph Lauren touched on luxury appeal with rich silk bias cuts, chiffon gowns and feathers. Louche sportiness led the way for legitimate pyjama dressing (which originated during the Jazz Age, albeit for lounging in one's stately home), as The Row produced silky separates suitable for an evening of debauchery.

Where Ralph Lauren left off, Gucci picked up with renewed vigour in Milan, as lavish designs inspired by Art Deco motifs sashayed down the catwalk. Graphic black, white and gold colour-blocked beaded gowns were brought to life with slicked back hair and smoky eyes, while Etro adapted the work of futurist artist Fortunato Depero to resurrect the classic flapper dress with vivid patterns, bold colours and mix-matched prints.

And the best news? There's no need to wait for collections to drop or a fancy dress invite. With subtle aplomb, celebrate the movement now with printed fabrics, geometric jewels and cloche hats. Filtering onto the high street, beaded chiffon dresses are a-plenty in the likes of Topshop and Miss Selfridge. Beauty junkies can delve into the world of gamine hairstyles as marcel style waves and bejewelled headbands are vital components of the look - not to mention a strategically placed beauty spot.

In a somewhat timely collision of fashion and film, Baz Luhrmann is currently filming his adaption of The Great Gatsby in Australia with a cast including Carey Mulligan, Leonardo Di Caprio and Gemma Ward. Released film stills saw Mulligan dripping in Tiffany diamonds and swathed in a fur stole, which only left the style sect wanting more.

Glamour, frivolity and opulence - if fashion really is the barometer of time, we're in for a spirited spring.