Great British Style

Hello leggy lovelies!

I’m back. Like, properly back.

Unfortunately my lovely hubby suffered some post-op complications (just a bit of excess fluid on his brain… I mean, what a drama queen. Does he know I’ve got a blog to write?). But he really is on the mend now. So while he lies on the sofa watching Homes Under the Hammer and doing his facial exercises, I thought I’d relaunch All the Tall things with something a little bit special.

Olympic excitement is bubbling for London 2012, and I’m pinning most of my hopes on the Women’s GB Rowing Team. You won’t find a greater display of leggy loveliness — all these gorgeous girlies are between 5’8 and 6’3 — so it seems rather fitting that Long Tall Sally has snapped them up to model its latest active-wear collection.

Three times Olympic medalist Katherine Grainger and her fellow reigning world champion Anna Watkins are the six-footers that inspired the range, and I got the scoop from Anna about body confidence, off-duty glam and the new LTS Row collection.

Hi Anna, you’ve been announced as one of the faces of LTS Row – the new activewear range from Long Tall Sally. How did that tie-up come about?

Anna Watkins, 6ft GB Rower

I approached Long Tall Sally because it’s my favourite shop and many of the women in the team also shop there. We were on a training camp last spring discussing the new seasons clothes over lunch and I thought that it’s such a natural choice for us rowers to shop there that we should have a conversation. Long Tall Sally agreed and it went from there. 

You’re both beautiful 6-footers. Had you previously struggled to find sportswear that was long enough?

Yes, especially tracksuit bottoms and vests for gym training. Our competition kit is made to measure but we struggled with general tall sportswear, until now!

What about when you’re off-duty? Do you still keep it casual or do you like to glam up and wear heels?

We spend a lot of time in casual tracksuit tops and warm snuggly tracksuit bottoms between training sessions, so it’s great to go completely the other way every now and again. We have to have a lot of early nights as athletes so when we do go out we make the most of it! I have lots of pairs of heels, I don’t care if I’m the tallest in the room. 

GB Rowing Team in Jersey Maxi Dress, Long Tall Sally £75

Yay! As athletes, you must find that height gives you an advantage over your opponents. What other sports did you enjoy at school?

Being tall is definitely an advantage for rowing as you can row a longer stroke. I played netball and swam and Katherine has a black belt in Karate.

You’re obviously both very determined and motivated individuals. What advice would you give to women who are struggling to embrace their height?

Hold your head high; have good posture and confidence and you’ll look great. The worst thing you can do is slouch. Fake it till you make it- pretend to be confident and you’ll feel better! We tall people look good in things that look funny on shorties so we have to embrace the things that suit us. As a tall person you can’t hide so you have to hit the world head on. 

The new faces of GB Row, Katherine Grainger and Anna Watkins

Very true. And lastly… how much would it mean to get that gold medal?

For Katherine and I a gold medal would be the fitting title to put on the combination we have worked so hard at becoming. It’s been a long journey for both of us, and worth it for itself, but we know we are capable of gold and so we’re incredibly excited about the summer.

If you’re struggling to take pride in your similarly amazonian frame, then you’d best adopt Anna’s infectious “fake it until you make it” attitude. And if you’d like to check out the new LTS Row range of active-wear, click here.

Come ON the girls!

L xx

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