Occasionally we find ourselves venturing outside our comfort zone as the object of desire seems too beautiful to resist. I am a true creature of habit therefore I am very predictable when it comes to knowing what I like and accepting what is better suited for others. When Collectif released their Spring/Summer 2014 previews, I saw lots of fabulous new designs and didn’t give a second glance at the ones that were simply “not me”. Fast forward several months to the release, I find myself swooning over the Kiki Jungle Cropped Top and Alana Jungle Sarong Skirt…was I crazy for even considering showing my stomach and wearing animal print, two things I steer clear from???
Available in sizes UK6-22 ~ MSRP Top £27.50/Skirt £39.50
When it comes to sizing, Collectif is fairly consistent with their size charts and they will add notes if the item is known to run a bit differently. Based on my measurements (36-27-39), I ordered a 10UK (Small) in both the top and skirt. When the Jungle set arrived, I could not believe how incredibly beautiful and vibrant the print was. Although I am not a fan of animal print, the tropical flowers and rich contrasting colours simply make it a stunning combination. Now the dreaded moment of truth, was I going to regret taking a gamble with showing my stomach? As soon as I tried the Kiki Cropped Top, I was blown away at the perfect fit and construction. With adjustable straps, wonderful bust support and room to wear a regular non strapless bra, it was already winning me over. Next up was the Alana Jungle skirt. At first I thought the waist was too big as it did not sit on my natural waist but I quickly saw it looked much better placed a little lower on the hips since I have short torso and it showed off the cropped top design much better. The wrap around skirt is fastened with a hidden inside button and side tie which allows you to tighten to whatever feels best. At 5’-4” tall, the skirt falls a couple inches below the knees and drapes superbly due to the fully lined interior.
Now the long awaited answer to the biggest question of all…was it flattering for a gal that has the furthest thing from a flat stomach? Yes! I seriously still can’t believe how incredible the Jungle 2 piece set makes me feel. Since I was able to pull the skirt down to just below my natural waist, I found it to be very becoming and still hid my lower stomach in the lovely side draping of the wrap skirt. How could two things I avoid like the plague turn out to be something I truly adore? Collectif has really outdone themselves with the Jungle Set, convincing even the biggest skeptics like myself. The Kiki Cropped Top needs to be released in more colours and prints as it would pair wonderfully with a multitude of summer looks. I truly hope to see a longer version as well which would be ideal for more everyday functionality.
With an upcoming trip to Jamaica, I know the Jungle Set will be one of the highlights to wear on the beach. Since the print is so vibrant and eye catching, it was simple to style by pairing it with a bamboo bangle, tropical hair flowers and Lucky Lou red wedges. Even if you’re not heading anywhere tropical, don’t let that stop you from wearing the Jungle set for an evening out as it will make you feel utterly fabulous.
Sometimes we creatures of habit have to look outside ourselves and try something new no matter how much it might scare us to do so. With no risk, there is no chance to be pleasantly surprised and experience something wonderful you would have otherwise missed out on. The Jungle Set has instantly found a place in my heart and wardrobe…what outfits have unexpectedly won you over?