Mirror Magazine


Time to belt-up
By Ishani Ranasinghe and Vidushi Seneviratne
There is always one accessory that stands out from the rest every season, and belts are hot this year. Everyone is wearing them, whether it's on jeans, dresses and other clothes. Designers are featuring them as a key look in their collections.

This time, belts come in all shapes and sizes, neat and chic, metallic, beaded or feathered. And don't forget the leather corset look. They range from the neat and narrow to the wide and oversized.

In other words, there is something for everyone, and it's almost compulsory if you want to look like you know what's in and what's not.

For some, no outfit is complete without a belt, slung low on their hips with jeans or one of those flirty peasant skirts.

"Belts came into fashion about two to three years ago and since people like to get in with the fashion, it's catching on in Sri Lanka as well," says Otara Chandiram, Managing Director of ODEL Unlimited.

It all started with the western cowboy influence. Belts with tassels slowly caught on in the fashion scene. Fashion changes very quickly, almost everyday, and the belt has now become a 'must have' in the wardrobe.

"The good thing about belts is that they can totally change an outfit from casual to dressy. It complements the outfit. It'll definitely be around for as long as it's in the international market," says Otara.

She went on to say that from the sales angle, the demand for this accessory has been good.

"There really is no age limit when it comes to belts. Everyone from kids and teenagers to adults are seen wearing them.

The corset belt is one of the most popular styles reflecting the hourglass shape. It's flattering to almost all figures cinching in the waist and giving a great shape worn over shirts or jackets.

For colour and opulence, there is the Japanese style Obi belt or for something really eye-catching, there are plenty of ornate and decorative designer belts to choose from.

A belt is often a really clever way of trying some of the more extreme fashion trends. For example, a brown leather stirrup belt can give you the cowboy look without overdoing it.

Belts available in the Sri Lankan market range from embroidered, sequined, leather and ornate, to ones with bronze medallions with Chinese markings on them. Some no bigger than a string, others six inches wide...take your pick.

So where do you find them? Among the shops we browsed through, were ODEL Unlimited, Dilshey, Shopping Girl and Rich and Famous at Crescat Boulevard.

They had a wide variety of belts from the sparkling and shiny to the toned down feather look.

Prices? Anything from Rs.300 upwards.

And he scores
Prince Harry lived up to his Action Man tag when he braved wet weather conditions to compete in a daredevil sport that left him muddied but relatively unscathed.

The 18-year old royal was almost un-recognizable after becoming covered in mud while competing in Eton's historic Wall Game, a cross between rugby, soccer and all-in wrestling which has been described as "brutal and extremely dangerous".

Eton College's annual St. Andrew's Day event, which dates back hundreds of years, was watched by 300 spectators including Harry's father Prince Charles, who stood with the other dads and Eton tutors to cheer the teams on.

The heir to the British throne watched proudly as his younger son, wearing his team's striped shirt and white gloves, and with his face daubed with matching 'warpaint', launched himself off a brick wall with the other players at the start of the game.

It was the second year running that the strapping Prince had taken part in the infamous sport. One of the oldest forms of rugby in existence, the Wall Game is thought to be the inspiration for the fast and frantic fictional game of Quidditch played by Harry Potter and his fellow student wizards at Hogwarts.

Harry, who proved a formidable player last year, barking orders and hurling himself into the scrum, once again showed off his sporting prowess as the teams struggled to gain possession of the ball on a slippery playing area which had been swamped by torrential rain.

At one stage, he looked like being crushed under a mass of bodies - wet during a break in the game, the rugged royal still found the energy to play the clown by lying down flat in the quagmire.

His efforts and those of his teammates were ultimately rewarded, however, when they scored twice - a rare event in the Wall Game - ensuring victory for the Oppidans.

It's not surprising that Harry has thrown himself wholeheartedly into the Wall Game. The sports-mad Prince has tried his hand at most adventure activities, including abseiling, scuba diving, skiing and polo - and endured his share of injuries along the way.

It's clear the daring teenage Prince has inherited his sporting skills from both his parents. While Princess Diana excelled at more sedate activities like ballet and swimming, Prince Charles once dived under the polar ice cap and, on another occasion, leapt out of a plane over Dorset with the Paras.

Now it remains to see how keenly Harry, who is in his final year at Eton, will follow through with his sports activities once he finishes his A levels next summer. It's already been reported that the young royal is planning to take a year off before starting university - and he intends to spend at least part of it improving his polo. (Hello)

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