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The nights are getting lighter and it’s pouring with rain outside, which can mean only one thing, Spring has sprung! We’re finally through (the worst of) the freezing cold days of duffle coats and ugg boots, and we can start planning our warm weather wardrobes. Problem is, most shops have had their Spring stock in for weeks already, and if you want to invest in key pieces, you need to move fast.

To help you decide on what you’ll need to revamp your look (or just as a treat) I’ve picked a few key trends that can be adapted no matter what dress size you wear. Just one of these key items will jazz up all those old faithfuls a treat – but don’t wait around for too long. Before you know it the shops will have nothing but gladiator flats, vest tops and bikinis on the rails!

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1. A black maxi dress

Last year I searched for ages for an embellished black maxi and never found the perfect one. This time around I’m spoilt for choice, but my top pick is currently this ASOS version with a dramatic gold beaded panel around the neck. The tiered cotton maxi dresses of previous seasons were often too voluminous to flatter a curvier woman, but I think the ASOS Curve model (left) fills out this more streamlined, jersey dress better than the slim model wearing the mainline version. The dress is £55 and available in size 20 – 26 in black as part of ASOS curve, or in black or khaki in sizes 6 – 20 as part of the ASOS Premium range.

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2. A pair of OTT sandals

Life’s too short to wear boring shoes, and this season there are plenty of completely over the top options to prove that! From clogs (yes, clogs) to over-embellished gladiator sandals and chunky peep-toe boots, your feet need to be dressed to impress. Tribal sandals (inspired by last Summer’s Louis Vuitton show) are still hot, and this season they’ve got even more colourful. If you need a wide fit, Evans are offering a pair in sizes 4 – 10 EEE for a very reasonable £39.50, meanwhile over at Next, the design team have completely upped the ante this season with the tribal animal sandals for £45.

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3. A denim biker jacket

After seeing Diane in Evans’ denim biker jacket, I knew I had to mention this style again. A biker jacket is so detatched from my usual style, especially a denim one, but mixed with Spring pastels it’s absolutely perfect and I’m sorely tempted to try something new for once! For plus size shoppers, So Fabulous! at Very has a £35 version in an acid wash in sizes 16 – 32. I also really like the pale wash of La Redoute’s version, which is also £35 and available in sizes 8 – 20.

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4. A touch of lace

Here’s a catwalk trend that’s easy to scale up or down to suit. Stella McCartney showed full-on lace jumpsuits, others went down a more subtle route with lace trims and inserts on black or pale-coloured outfits. The most literal translation of the look comes from F&F at Tesco, whose £28 lace blazer (sizes 8 – 16) is a full-on nod to Ms McCartney. On a more subtle, wearable end of the scale is Evans’ floral lace-effect top with lace trim for £27. They styled it for the catalogue with a lacy cardigan over the top, so fingers crossed that’s hitting the shops soon!

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5. In the nude

Much to my chagrin, washed-out, barely there shades are taking over the dark hues we’ve all relied on. Nudes and pastel shades are the key colours of the season, and it’s not a look that’s easy to pull off if you’re pale like me! If you’re blessed with a skintone that doesn’t fade completely into mocha, mink and beige, give one of these dresses a go. Miss Selfridge go simple with a belted tunic for £30 (sizes 4-16) while Curvety pick draped jersey for a plus size option coming in at £49.