Flamenco inspired...

Another day, another treasure unearthed from a box. I have had this skirt since my 16th birthday and is one of those pieces that feels comfortable, whatever the occasion. It has been to Italy with me, various family meals, university and now work. It is definitely one of those pieces that I would never get rid of as it just holds so many memories! The shape and style always remind me of the dresses that flamenco dancers (or at least the ones in films) wear. 

Skirt: Pepe Jeans via House of Fraser, top: Primark, cardigan: Peacocks, shoes:Dorothy Perkins
 This top is another treasure, I bought it from Primark when I was doing my internship with the Civil Service, it is scary to think that that was 2 (!) years ago, doesn't time fly?! It has just the right amount of detailing in the form of a slight peplum hem and 2 little bows on the front and the black helps to tone down the more colourful aspects of my wardrobe!

Unfortunately I am not blessed with Mediterranean colouring, despite my name so I played up my ghostly white face porcelain skin with red lipstick and some smudgy black eyeliner. 

Beautiful embroidery and colours, I dread to think how much work went into sewing all of this as it is beautifully finished!

What has taken you through big changes? Which clothes hold the most memories for you?

Summer sizzle...

Whilst this summer has been a bit of a washout so far (I am holding out for some nicer weather this week!) a rather welcome sunshine package dropped through my door a couple of weeks ago. Aussie never fail to get it right when it comes to putting a smile on my face and this latest parcel was no exception...

I love purple and orange together!

When I opened the box I was greeted with the most heavenly smelling bag filled with all kinds of Aussie goodies.

I am going back to Italy in August and I cannot wait, I had such an amazing time last year and I know that this year is just going to be even better, especially as we will be spending more time in Rome! (EEK!)

I love the limited edition bottles for summer this year, the colours are so pretty and make me feel really summery. My favourite out of these has to be the leave in conditioner, it was a lifesaver last year in the heat, especially when I was spent all of my time either in the pool or sunbathing!

MINIATURES! I love mini toiletries and Mark often has to drag me away from the travel toiletries stand as otherwise I would buy absolutely everything, just because it's small. My mum and sisters have already bagsied some of these and I get the feeling they will try and snaffle the full-size bottles too!

This summer you'll find me at the pool, Aussie towel in tow to save my sun-lounger. I now want a purple bikini to match my Aussie bag too, any recommendations? 

Are you going anywhere on holiday? What makes your summer sizzle?

Burnt orange...

Burnt orange is not really a colour I associate with summer, for me it always conjures up images of log fires and crunchy leaves (what can I say, I'm an Autumn girl at heart!) but this cropped jacket has been perfect for covering up at work recently. I last wore this skirt here and I can't believe how time has flown, so many things have changed since that post!

Jacket:H&M, top: Reiss via charity shop, belt: Primark, skirt: Laura Ashley, shoes: ASDA
The shape and length of this skirt is perfect for work, especially when its warm outside. These photos were taken around 5.45am on Wednesday morning and the temperature went to a rather muggy 23 °C so I was glad of my bare legs and sleeveless blouse! 

I picked this Reiss top up in a local charity shop as I loved the blush pink colour and the ruffles down the front but I was never sure what to wear it. The best part though was the fact it was the grand total of £5! It is fairly long in the body but the colour matched perfectly with this skirt and the neckline was high enough to be 'office appropriate'. I love the fact that it is lined as well, so many shops don't do this and I really wish they would! 

Quite by accident, I had bought this skinny belt in a pack of three from Primark recently (for 50p!) and the orange matched perfectly, never a given, especially if you try and match colours between shops! 

What do you wear to work when it is warm? Do you associate particular colours with seasons? 

Ballerina bun...

I wore this outfit on Saturday night and I was totally overdressed for the pub, but sometimes it is nice to get dressed up for no reason at all and I would rather be overdressed than under-dressed! The main reason why I wanted to wear this dress though, was because I unearthed it in a box which we hadn't yet unpacked (along with some other wardrobe favourites which will be reappearing on here soon)

Dress: Miss Selfridge, tights: Sainsburys, shoes: Office
I bought this dress in 2010 in one of the infamous Miss Selfridge sales and I originally wore it for Christmas but it has been pulled out for various family meals since because it is just so pretty. I love the blush pink/nude coloured underskirt and the swooshy skirt skims nicely over a food baby (always a win in my book!) 

I usually wear my hair up with this dress as the collar is such a feature and I used my doughnut hair ring to create a truly mahoosive ballerina inspired bun. This hairstyle is potentially a bit severe but the wispy bits I couldn't control made me look less scary (I hope!) Also another hairstyle to add to my very limited follicular repertoire, I never know how to mix it up...

My new favourite make-up look, liquid eyeliner and a nude lip, I will get better with liquid eyeliner, I will!

Do you prefer being overdressed or under-dressed? What do you wear to the pub?

Summer sandals...

When it's sunny, you just have to grab your sunnies and sandals and head outside as the likelihood is, it won't stick around for long! I have had this dress for a few years not and I love the colours and patterns (which remind me of a carpet!) but it is a bit of an odd length and extremely low cut. 

Dress: Peacocks, jacket: M&S (I have had this since my eleventh birthday!), bandeau top: H&M, sunglasses: Accessorize, necklace: Topshop, belt: Primark, sandals:c/o Spartoo
Apologies for the gratuitous chest shot, but do you see what I mean about it being low cut?! It would be  positively indecent without a top on underneath!

These beautiful shoes are from my new favourite brand, Clarks. As I get older I appreciate good shoes more and I have already written about my love of Clarks shoes before and these sandals are in my favourite colours and ridiculously comfy to boot. Despite having very thin soles, they have padding under my heels so offer more support than many other sandals do. (Pssst they're on sale at the moment too!)

Plus they have ankle straps to keep them on my feet! 

When it's warm, my hair tends to be bundled up on top of my head but I want to find something more exciting to do with it now it is a bit longer, any ideas?

What is your favourite brand for shoes? How do you wear your hair in the summer?

P.S. This post was done in sponsorship with Spartoo

(REPOST) My diabetes and me...

This is a repost from last November but as #DiabetesWeek comes to an end, I wanted to share my story as diabetes is something I am incredibly passionate about. Some things have changed since then (moving house, graduating, getting a job) but diabetes has remained a constant throughout, for better or worse!

I know this is a bit of a heavy topic but diabetes is something I am really passionate about. I have written about diabetes on the blog before but I thought that 'World Diabetes Day' was as good a time as any to share this. I originally wrote this article for the Elle writing competition back in August but as I never heard back from them I thought it may be interesting to share it here. 

I was seven when it happened. I left the doctor's surgery with a feeling of dread but without truly knowing what it would mean. On 5th August 1997 I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and nothing was ever the same again. Now I realise this all sounds completely over-dramatic, I mean there are people in much worse states all over the world, but adjusting to being diabetic has been an ongoing process and has led to more than a few ups and downs over the years. To be honest, I don’t know how my parents coped. I am the oldest of five children and my youngest brother had been born only a couple of weeks before, yet my parents (and my mother especially) just took it in their stride. For the first few years after diagnosis I refused to tell anyone, including my friends at school, because I felt that if I ignored it then it would disappear. Unfortunately, this wasn’t the case at all and I was in hospital more often than I was in school. A yoyo is a fitting metaphor for me and my diabetes; I have swung from high to low (quite literally with my blood sugars!) over the years and at one point I was given only a few months to live if I continued at the same rate. After some horrific teenage years where I refused to take my injections, again thinking that denial would be the best policy, I realised the horrific impact I was having on both my body and my family. I also suffered from low self esteem and depression for a long time and I think this is a direct result of these actions. It wasn’t fair to keep putting my family through this, so I really tried to get it all under control but once again my body wasn’t co-operating. When I was 15 I had 50% attendance at school due to my hospital stays and my diabetes was spiralling out of control, despite the 4 injections I was taking every day. It is no joke to say that I felt like a pincushion for most of my teens... luckily this ensured that I would never ever try drugs as I failed to comprehend why people would choose to stick needles into their body. I’m sure this is one thing that my parents are grateful for!

Just before I took my GCSEs I started insulin pump therapy and started dating Mark, two other huge milestones in my life. The insulin pump meant that I was able to fulfil my potential at school and eventually college and the support of my boyfriend has ensured that I never gave up on my dream to go to university. My parents weren’t keen, after all everyone has heard the horror stories about the binge drinking and wild parties that go on at uni and diabetes has never coped well with either . Determination, and more than a hint of stubbornness, meant that I started at the University of Warwick in 2008 and I can honestly say that they were the best three years of my life. Of course it was difficult, I didn’t have the safety net of my family and I actually missed my first week because my diabetes decided to play up the night before I was due to move into halls. Luckily though, Mark ended up at the same uni and this reassured my parents that I wasn’t going to be completely thrown in at the deep end. University taught me a lot of things but most importantly it taught me that I can do anything I want to. 

For years, my diabetes seemed like a punishment; who was going to want to employ someone who wasn’t always capable of looking after themselves? Who would want to date someone who has ‘hyperlipotrophy’ or as I fondly named it, a ‘salami sausage’ ring around their stomach as a result of insulin injections? Who would want to be friends with someone who has to be more careful when going out, who may have to leave the party early to go home? The answer is lots of people. I have been lucky enough to have amazing family, friends and workmates. My diabetes is not the thing people remember me for but rather my love of floral dresses and bright colours, cheesy pop music and yummy food. Being a diabetic has made me stronger, more determined to succeed and made me appreciate the ‘smaller things’ in life. It also means that I am completely unfazed by hospitals or anything involving needles. Once you have spent hours waiting around for hospital appointments, any fear you may have is quickly replaced with boredom. I still don’t have my diabetes completely under control but I am trying and surely that’s the most important thing. My diabetes has shaped me but it doesn't define me and I wear my ‘salami sausage’ as a trophy, proof that things can get better and that it doesn't have to be the end of your plans. I graduated from university, I have a wonderful boyfriend, lovely family and amazing friends. I am also diabetic and living proof that there is no such thing as a lost cause. A lot of things have changed since 1997, and I for one, am glad. 

What has made you the person you are today? 

P.S. If you have any questions then I will be more than happy to answer them! 

Moody blues...

When you are feeling blue, and it's raining outside, comfy layers are key. I almost feel embarrassed to be posting what is essentially jeans and a comfy jumper and calling it an outfit, but this blog reflects what I actually wear and do, so apologies for the lack of glamour at High Fashion HQ chez Fallon ;)

Jacket: M&S via charity shop, jumper:ASDA, top: Dorothy Perkins, jeans: Topshop, shoes: Office
 I have had this jacket for years and it has been passed round various people (including Mark's mum!) but it has found its way back into my wardrobe. It is a very light linen which is perfect for adding an extra layer but it completely lacks any shape which makes me look a bit blocky unfortunately! 

I bought this jumper out of necessity when I was in town the one day without a coat and the loose swing shape reminds me of something I would wear on a typical day at the beach in a British Summer! My mum had a jumper that was fairly similar in colour and style to this when I was younger and it makes me nostalgic  for all our family holidays. 

I balanced out the shape of the jumper with the skinny jeans and it resulted in a very cosy outfit that was perfect for another grey day. Not ground-breaking but hey, a girl can't sit FROW and eat cupcakes every day!

What do you wear when you're feeling blue? Which clothes make you nostalgic?

Midi length with polka dots...

I saw this dress on ASOS ages ago and loved the floaty sleeves so when it came into the sale, I snapped it up immediately as I knew it would be perfect for wearing for work. When it arrived it was longer than I expected (when will I realise that ASOS models have much longer legs than me?!) so I realised that heels would be needed to prevent dreaded 'stumpy leg syndrome'...

Dress: ASOS, tights: Primark, shoes: Office, belt:  New Look, necklace:Accessorize
 You can see my haircut slightly better in this photo, the slightly dazed look is due to the fact that these pictures were taken at 5.30 am before I started work, I'm not the best at waking up early in the morning! The necklace is made of gorgeous bronze coloured knots and is the perfect length to wear with a high neckline...

A more difficult length is balanced by my old favourites, my leopard print belt and red nails...

The best part of this outfit though was definitely the tights, they definitely add a sense of fun to any outfit!

What do you wear to work? How would you make a midi dress more wearable?

"Faux fur and lots of eyeliner..."

In response to the question "What are you wearing today?" from Mark, there really was only one answer! I hate to follow the stereotype but I was really hoping that I could pack away my thick tights and coats until September at least! [OK complaints about the weather are all over!]

Top: ASOS, shorts: Topshop, fur gilet: D.I.Y from Dorothy Perkins, tights: Primark, shoes:  c/o Spartoo, necklace: Accessorize
The last time I wore this gilet I was toying with trimming the sleeves down and I'm glad I did as it makes it look a lot less bulky and I feel less like a gorilla! 

I ordered these Buffalo shoes after searching for some flat shoes for work. Online they are described as grey but when they arrived I would say they are closer to a khaki grey/green which works surprisingly well as a neutral in my wardrobe. These are real leather so they are incredibly soft and hardly took any wearing in which is always a bonus. 

Outtake of the day: trying to keep my ears warm, after a freezing cold gust of wind nearly blew me over, luckily my jacket kept me warm...

What have you been wearing now it has gone chilly again? Which colours do you consider neutrals? 

P.S. This post was done in sponsorship with Spartoo

Grey marl and (p)leather....

When it's grey and cold outside, I always go back to basics. Usually that would be a pretty dress or something bright but Mark bought me this grey marl t-shirt from Hobbs a while ago and I can honestly  say I have never worn a comfier t-shirt. It is the perfect slouchy fit which means it is comfortable to wear but the illustration elevates it to something a bit more special. 

T-shirt: Hobbs, pleather skirt: Topshop, tights: ASDA
I also like the fact it is long enough in the body to wear with this pleather skirt. Pleather is a bit of a contentious fabric but I think as long as you keep the rest of your outfit simple, then you can't really go wrong... it's definitely a lot more fun than denim!

This outfit is a bit of a departure from the norm for me, I wouldn't usually wear anything this slouchy (or colourless!) but it was fun to break out of my comfort zone... 

Luckily, the owl print made it much more Maria friendly! ;)

An owl in loafers and cat eye glasses is potentially quite creepy but I actually think it is pretty darn cute!

Would you wear (p)leather? What are your basics?

A Jubilee jamboree... (PICTURE HEAVY)

♥  I finally got my hair cut! I went to Blushes in Cheltenham after a few people recommended it to be and I couldn't be happier, the blowdry lasted well into the next morning,even in a sweaty club...very impressive!
♥ I went out on Saturday night for a much overdue drink and dance with some of my closest friends, we went out to celebrate Mike's birthday and it was really lovely, there really is nothing better...
  Mark, me and Oli
♥ Dr. Evil
♥ Jess and Mark
♥ Pete, Mark and me
♥ Pete, me and a rather fab Jubilee hat...
♥ Oli and Jess
♥ A few too many drinks methinks...
♥ Vodka cranberry, me, Oli and Pete
♥ My shiny face due to too many cocktails, Oli and Jess
♥  Group photo!
   Orange juice, the morning after the night before...
 Pains au chocolat
  Bunting and a pretty dress c/o Asda. I was offered the choice of lots of pretty dresses but I loved the cute print and flattering shape of this one the best...
 A classic cat eye and red lips to flatter the 50s style of the dress...
  They also sent me a fantastic tea party kit including a tablecloth, some Emma Bridgewater fudge and the most darling commemorative tea-cup (definitely a future heirloom!)

How did you celebrate the Jubilee?