Sugary colour combos ruled on the spring catwalks. Katie Wright picks the best pastel pieces on the high street.

The appearance of pale, pretty colours on the spring/summer catwalks wouldn’t normally be much to write home about – but this year, it was the designers who chose these soft shades that were most surprising.

Models on the catwalk during the Preen by Thornton Bregazzi London Fashion Week SS18 show
Models on the catwalk during the Preen by Thornton Bregazzi London Fashion Week SS18 show

Tom Ford – known for glitz, glamour and lots of high-contrast brights – showed a variety of bonbon pink and lilac looks, as did Phoebe Philo at Celine, while Victoria Beckham played with ice cream-hued tailoring and Preen made the case for patchworked floral pastels.

The good thing about this trend is that because all these hues share a similar frosty feel, you can pick and mix them as you please, but there are certain combinations that really work.

These are our catwalk-inspired pastel picks, and where to shop them on the high street right now…

1. Lilac
Victoria Beckham’s mannish blazer in a Parma Violets purple with matching skinny trousers was one of the standouts looks from her SS18 collection, while Nina Ricci’s military-inspired jacket proved that lilac doesn’t have to be ladylike.

Wear it with: Contrast lilac with pistachio green, or go tonal with deeper or brighter shades of purple.


Principles Lilac Tailored Jacket, currently reduced to €56.25 from €75; Principles Multi-Coloured Stripe Print Sleeveless Midi Dress, currently reduced to €54.00 from €72, Debenhams.

cami top
New Look

This Lilac Square Neck Cami is €6.99 in New Look

2. Peach
Softer than coral, peach (or apricot, they’re pretty much interchangeable when it comes to fashion) is the warmest of the pastels and, much like Nars’ iconic blusher, Orgasm Blush, is a shade that suits just about everyone.

Wear it with: Keep it warm and sunny by pairing peach with lemon yellow and finishing your look with gold jewellery.

Simply Be

Simply Be Print Mock Wrap Tie Waist Skirt, £30

Marks and Spencer shirt

Marks and Spencer's Long Sleeve Shirt in Peach, €40

3. Mint
Seen on everything from leather jackets (at Acne) to flouncy frocks (Preen and Missoni), mint looked cooler than ever on the catwalks.

Wear it with: Team crisp blue-toned mint separates with powder pink, or make a mint dress the focus of your outfit, accented with black accessories.

Topshop dress

Topshop's Spot Foil Maxi Dress in Mint, €76

Miss Selfridge top
Miss Selfridge

This Mint Twist Tie Back T-Shirt is €35 in Miss Selfridge

4. Blush pink
Much has been made of the rise of millennial pink, but now designers like Tom Ford and Christopher Kane are moving away from that Barbie-esque hue to something subtler.

Wear it with: Pink and grey is a classic combination, but for summer it has to be dove grey. Alternatively, set off the softness of the pink with scarlet red.


Zara's High Waist Skinny Jeans in Soho Pink are €39.95 


Lipsy Tailored Ruched Sleeve Blazer, €63, Next

5. Pale blue
Often associated with workwear and shirting, icy blue got a refresh for SS18, thanks to the sexy dresses at Versace and ruffled looks at Givenchy and Ralph & Russo.

Wear it with: Combine baby blue and white for a softer take on the nautical navy and white combo, or mix it in with a variety of pastels.

blue skirt

This Jacquard frill skirt from Oasis was €55 but is now down to €44

blue dress
River Island

River Island's Light blue frill cold shoulder dress is €55