Sunday, 29 September 2013

Brilliantly British fashion bloggers...

As a blogger I have been lucky enough to do all sorts of wonderful things but I think one of the best and strangest things I have done so far is having having my face printed onto a some playing cards. Yes you read that right, along with some of my favourite bloggers (oh hai Sarah, CarlaGem and Michelle!) I am officially part of the Best of British Fashion Bloggers card game!




The cards all came beautifully packaged (I am still finding sequins all over the living room!) and with a lovely note from Style Fruits who actually made the cards.


I had so much fun looking at everyone's 'vital statistics' and it has made me realise that I own far too many pairs of shoes! Although I am already a fan of a lot of the blogs featured, it has also given me a load more to follow - never a bad thing, I am always looking for new blogs to update my blogroll with :)


I always used to play Top Trumps with my brothers and sisters when I was younger and it is even more fun when your face is included in the mix!


I have a spare deck to give away so if you want to win your own Brilliantly British Fashion Bloggers trump cards, share your favourite bloggers with me, the ones you can't go without reading and I'll randomly someone to win.
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Thursday, 26 September 2013

Dressing like a children's TV presenter...

I don't know what it is about wearing bright blue recently but I really can't get enough of it. You all know how obsessed I am with Monki too and, like my neon jumper, these slouchy trousers were another £8 bargain - I have worn them so many times since I bought them! This outfit is a weird hybrid of brightly coloured TV presenter and bad 80s workwear. I blame the trousers, personally.  Initially I was going to go for a more neutral jacket but I actually really love the bold primary colours together and it makes for a much more interesting outfit. The beauty of wearing bright blocky separates is that if you do get too self-conscious, you can just lose the jacket and you've got a much more conventional work outfit - perfect for more conservative offices!

Jacket: Tesco, top: Reiss via charity shop, belt: New Look, trousers: Monki, shoes: c/o Spartoo shoes

This red blazer is another wardrobe staple of mine and the cropped length was perfect for pairing with the rather granny-like trousers (crepe fabric is back IN, kids...) The leopard print belt helps to break up the outfit a bit and also draws attention to my waist, which miraculously these trousers made look tiny - never a bad thing...


The fit is slightly strange on these (I think I could have probably downsized on them) and I'm not entirely convinced that they are flattering  I need to get these shortened or wear heels with them but I just feel so much cooler with flats on (and they are way more comfortable for a day full of meetings!)

French Sole shoes, I love you!
How would you 'de-frump' these trousers?


P.S. This post was done in collaboration with Spartoo
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Tuesday, 24 September 2013

A striped dress and the world's most neon jumper...

Gloomy days call for bright clothes and they don't get much brighter than this jumper! Another Monki bargain, it cost a mere £8 in their sale and it is the perfect 'inbetweeny' jumper, warm enough to keep you warm but not so thick that you boil to death (anyone else who thinks that their work has put on the central heating far too early?!) Before it arrived, I didn't realise  just how bright it was but this is one very loud, very neon jumper! Despite worrying that it might be a bit *much*, every time I have worn it, I have had so many compliments from pretty much everyone who has seen me in it. If you are feeling grey, this neon cherry red Trudy jumper is a mood-booster in knitted form...  Although I like bright colours, I never think of myself as liking neon clothes (too many uni flashbacks) but this was way more wearable than I expected . Because the colour is enough of a statement on its own, I opted for my favourite stripey dress and plain shoes to (try) and tone it down a bit. 

Dress: Isabella Oliver (clothes swap), jumper: Monki, necklace: New Look, shoes: Office
I never used to like layering jumpers up with dresses but recently it has been my go-to when I'm not sure what to wear- all the fun of a skirt without having to find a top that matches! You all know how much I love Max Factor lipsticks and it seems I'm not the only one! This perfectly pinky coral is the 'Bewitching Coral' shade and the lovely Amy is also a fan (although it looks like a completely different colour on her!) Being matchy- matchy may not be cool but if this is wrong, I don't wanna be right! 


This necklace was such a bargain and is one of the hardest working pieces of jewellery that I own. You can imagine my horror then when I couldn't find it to wear with this outfit! Luckily Mark saved the day and stopped me having a meltdown at 6.00 am which I am grateful for. A temper tantrum definitely starts your day on a bad note!


How do you make neon more wearable?
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Saturday, 21 September 2013

1920s inspired...

I was clearly looking to a slightly earlier decade for inspiration than I usually would here, I don't usually wear anything non-fitted or oversized but there's something about Monki that forces me out of my comfort zone, I love the cool yet accessible Scandinavian feel of their clothes, even if I'm not a tall willowy blonde! This is the cream Precious jumper dress which I really love, I am seriously tempted to get the blue version too... I really like the relaxed shape of it and paired with my string of faux pearls, it felt very 1920s inspired. I can imagine it looking really nice with some t-bars or Mary Jane shoes for a dressier look too which is always good. You can't go wrong with a good jumper dress in Autumn/Winter! 

Jumper dress: Monki, leggings: Tesco, boots: c/o Spartoo, necklace: Dorothy Perkins
I had to put a white camisole top underneath it as it is a little sheer but a slip dress would work just as well as an extra layer when it gets colder. For some reason, the Boots in Ludlow had the 'Revlon Super Lustrous™ Lipstick' in Cherry Blossom reduced to just £2 and it is a gorgeous pinky red which I have been wearing to work pretty much everyday this week - I don't know why but I have always found it much easier to wear lipstick in the colder months and this is a really easy to wear shade! I am so glad that I am getting my hair cut later, it has gotten more than a little wild!


When John Greed got in touch with me to ask whether I was interested in reviewing some Pandora charms, I was a little dubious - I have never liked the silver bracelets. But when this grey leather bracelet with this charm arrived, I fell in love and I have worn it every day since. I have even started a wishlist of the charms I want (*cough* this owl one *cough*) It is strange how the people who are most disapproving of something become the biggest converts ;)

Worn with Barry M grey nail varnish topped with Max Factor sparkly black nail polish.

Are you a fan of charm bracelets? Which charms would you recommend?


P.S. This post was done in collaboration with John Greed Jewellery
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Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Early morning blues...

You can see from these photos that the weather has changed and Autumn is well and truly here. Just like every other blogger out there, Autumn is my favourite season and I have been enjoying the slight chill in the morning as I leave for work. I'm sure all of this will change when the temperatures drop proper but for now I am feeling pretty happy. I once read somewhere that people are most comfortable in the season that they are born in so my affinity for Autumn is bred in ;) I am a real fan of wearing bright colour when it is grey outside and this Matalan blazer has been getting a lot of wear recently!

Blazer: c/o Matalan, top: NW3 by Hobbs, jeans: Topshop, shoes: Betty London flats
This top also gets worn a lot, this time I paired it with red nails and a blue blazer rather than a red blazer and blue nails! I have been repeating the same outfits (or at least elements of them) a lot recently, I need a dash of inspiration from somewhere I think, staring at Pinterest and wishing hard for a new wardrobe just ain't cutting it!


Believe it or not, these are only the second pair of blue shoes that I have ever owned and they have barely left my feet. I am always impressed with Betty London shoes and this pair fit my feet like a glove. The only other brand that comes close for me at the moment is Clarks. It can be so difficult to get ballet flats to fit properly but these hug my feet and even have support for the balls and arch of my feet - winner!


What's your favourite season?


P.S. This post was done in collaboration with Spartoo
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Sunday, 15 September 2013

A trip to Ludlow Food Festival... (PICTURE HEAVY POST)

I remember, back when I first started this blog, I seemed to go on a lot more day trips but recently, that seems to have fallen by the wayside slightly. I don't know whether this is because I forget to take photos or perhaps just because I don't tend to go on as many little trips anymore but Mark and I have both said that we want to bring back our day trips and explore a little bit more. We live in such a beautiful area, it seems a shame not to visit as much of it as possible...


This weekend I went to Ludlow with Mark and his family to visit to the Ludlow Food Festival - bread, cheese and marquees? Count me in! 


Last time we visited Ludlow (back in November last year) it was absolutely freezing and rained for the whole day but despite some thunderclouds the weather was perfect...



Ludlow is one of those places that has a mix of stuff you would find on every high street (Costa, Boots) and some really lovely independent shops. I popped into The Castle Bookshop which was lovely (working for a publisher, I really love spotting my work's books whenever I am in a bookshop #sad) and despite buying a lot of books online (nobody mention the A word!) there's nothing quite like a bookshop!


The 'Books Are My Bag' campaign is aimed at getting people to visit and support their local bookshops and rediscover their love of reading. I  was super excited to get my hands on a 'Books Are My Bag' tote bag - I will definitely be the coolest kid at the gym ;)
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Thursday, 12 September 2013

How I styled a red pinafore dress...

I know some people can be a bit snobby about supermarket clothing but some of my favourite pieces have been picked up alongside my weekly shop! F&F recently got in touch about their 'How You're Wearing It' feature and asked me to choose my favourite piece from their range and show how I would style it up. In the end, I chose this red pinafore dress (my love of red dresses is well documented on this blog!) and as is usual with pinafore style dresses, I paired it with a stripey top - this here is one fashion blogger who isn't afraid to mix it up ;)

Dress: c/o F&F at Clothing at Tesco, top: Oasis, shoes: Office 
I really love the fit of this dress, it hits at that perfect sweet spot just on the knee and the pleats are fab, plus you just can't beat a swooshy skirt....I know it will get a lot of wear layered up with long sleeved tops in the winter and I have a few jumpers that would be perfect for that preppy/schoolgirl vibe I love so much! I bought the dress in the next size up so I could layer it but to be honest I didn't need to, there is more than enough room...


Looking at these photos, I probably should have worn some lipstick with this but at the time it looked a bit much with the glasses, I guess photos can be deceiving!


Which things are you loving from F&F this Autumn?
P.S. This post was done in collaboration with Clothing at Tesco
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Tuesday, 10 September 2013

A bright blue blazer and lots of red lipstick....

It's just typical, I really loved this outfit but all of the photos came out looking really bizarre, mainly due to the light. I have to say (starting early on the moaning here!) I really miss taking photos outside during the winter, natural light is way more flattering first thing! I am lucky enough to be able to wear nearly anything to work and  my work outfits tend to be pretty casual but I try to incorporate smarter elements, like this blazer, and keep my skirt lengths relatively appropriate. 

Blazer: c/o Matalan, top: Primark, skirt: French Connection, shoes: c/o Spratoo
There's nothing more annoying than your hair getting in your eyes as you are trying to work and whilst I love me a good topknot (#bloggercliche) it can look a bit strange at work! Recently I have been swooshing it back (technical term) and just pinning it into place with kirby grips. I love victory rolls but I can never really manage them, I think I need to trawl YouTube for some tips! My preferred red daytime lipstick is a Mac one which I got from the Cosmetics Company at Swindon designer outlet but I have never seen any lipsticks with red tubes before or since, any ideas if they are from a special collection? 


Recently I have really loved French Connection (a shop I only ever look at when stuff is on sale!) and when I saw this skirt, I fell in love. Believe it or not, I don't actually have a black knee length skirt and it is such a wardrobe staple. I can't wait to layer this up with jumpers and ankle boots! I have barely taken these shoes off recently, they fit my foot like a glove and they are so comfortable! Now Betty London just need to do them in every colour...


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Sunday, 8 September 2013

The 'Magic' dress?

When F&F got in touch recently to see if I wanted to review a dress from their new 'Magic' range I have to admit that I was intrigued. This dress promises to 'smooth the tummy, shape the bottom and thighs and define the silhouette' which are some pretty big promises for one dress and I have to say I was pretty dubious! The dress features an under layer that is supposed to act like Spanx to smooth away the lumps and bumps but this ends up making the dress very tight. When it came to putting it on, I really struggled and it looks like other people found the fit very tight too, I guess if you just squash everything down it makes it more streamlined, right?! 

Dress: c/o F&F, shoes: Office
Despite that though, once you get the dress on I do really like it. The colour is great and I love shift dresses, especially for work. I have reordered the dress in the next size up and I know that it will get a lot of wear at work when I have important meetings (you can't go wrong with fitted dresses!) Hopefully sizing up will give me a bit more wriggle room ;) 


A better look at the colour- I really love forest green, especially in the Autumn! Whilst the fit of this dress was completely bizarre and I'm not entirely convinced by the 'magic' layer, I really like the colour and I can't wait for my replacement frock to arrive! 



P.S. This post was done in collaboration with F&F.
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Thursday, 5 September 2013

Puritan

There's something about dressing like a schoolgirl (not like that!) that I just can't resist (see here, here and here for proof) and this outfit felt like a rather strange mixture of Wednesday Addams, a Puritan costume with a dash of schoolgirl thrown in (I blame the satchel). I don't tend to wear monochrome outfits very often but occasionally something a little more severe helps to shake me out of my sartorial style rut...This green coat has barely left my back over the past two weeks, chilly rainy mornings have sent me running back to my coat collection faster than you can say 'back to school'.

Coat: Marks & Spencer, dress: ASOS, top: Vero Moda via Amazon, tights: Tesco, shoes: c/o Matalan, unsure face: model's own
I spent a lot of time trawling ASOS trying to find a collared dress but none of them were quite right, either the shape was off or it was too fussy so I decided to just buy a high necked dress and a sleeveless shirt and make my own! I always forget that Amazon sell clothes and this Vero Moda blouse just happened to slip into my basket when I was looking for new books to read. I really like the subtle sequins and actually this is the best way to wear the blouse - it is a really odd swing shape so it is best as a thin layer. 


The dress is a little short but with thick black tights, it is one of the most comfortable dresses I own and is so easy to wear (and layer). It's definitely going to get a lot of wear as the weather gets colder!


Do you own a collared dress? Where did you buy it?

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Tuesday, 3 September 2013

'Miles for Macmillan'...

Macmillan Centre at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital London

Just a quick post today, I don't usually reproduce press releases but this one really caught my eye and as a cause close to my heart, I really wanted to share. 'Miles for Macmillan', is an initiative between Boots UK and Macmillan Cancer Support which is encouraging people to get out there and make time for what matters to them, by gathering their family and children for a lovely day out and rediscovering the joy of walking together, all while raising money to help support the two million people living with and beyond cancer in the UK.

There are nine walks happening in August and September, offering three and eight mile routes in countryside locations across the UK so everyone regardless of age and ability can take part. If you can make it to a walk, please do, this is a really fantastic cause and anything that encourages people to get outside and help to raise money for a fantastic charity can only be a good thing, right?! Mark and I are hoping to be able to go to the walk at Hampton Court Castle but I am just waiting to hear if we will be free this Sunday. 


Want to get involved? 

* Tweet #milesformacmillan and your local route location to find out who will be on the same walk as you so that you can buddy up ahead of the walks


* Tweet an image of your most scenic spot and why you love it so much with the hashtag #milesformacmillan. The picture above is taken halfway up Bredon Hill, a walk my family and I do every Easter and a really beautiful spot. It is one of the most peaceful places in the world and the perfect place to escape to, I really am lucky to live in such a lovely place.



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Sunday, 1 September 2013

1970s inspired denim...

A couple of weeks ago I went to visit my friend Cindy and helped her to pick up some pieces for a 1970s fancy dress party. I wore this outfit to work on the following Monday and obviously I had been influenced by the time we spent wandering around the charity shops in Portishead. This outfit is almost as 1970s as you can get! Swap the skinny jeans for flares and you could be forgiven for thinking you had stepped back in time... You can tell it is starting to get darker in the mornings as these photos came out pretty dark, I think it will be back inside for photos soon :( 

Cardigan: Gap via Matilda, top: Primark, camisole: Tesco, jeans: Topshop, shoes: New Look
This top was a charity shop bargain from Primark which I really love, the print reminds me of terracotta tiles and the colours are deliciously seventies - what more could you ask for in a top?! My beloved mustard cardigan provides the perfect layer to protect against the creeping Autumnal chill. I am really looking forward to wearing cosy knits and ankle boots again but the colder weather has been a bit of a shock in the mornings, I need to get used to it again!


The grass by our flats hasn't been cut for weeks and with all the weeds wild flowers it is almost looking like a stereotypical blogger meadow. Now, to qualify as a 'proper blogger' I just need a lace maxi dress and a flower crown to take pictures with ;) In all seriousness though, it is very pretty and much nicer than boring old grass, here's hoping they don't cut it for a while longer... You can't really see them thanks to the long grass but these tan loafers are a long standing resident in the Frills 'n' Spills wardrobe and have been my shoe of choice recently - New Look really are brilliant for simple comfortable flats. 


Does the 70s ever inspire your outfits?

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