Sunday 31 July 2016

Things I'm loving this week #1

Popcorn - I will forever be a biscuit fiend, however lately popcorn has been my snack of choice. I used to hate salted (sweet for the win!), but now I'm coming around to the idea of it. Stores are starting to bring out some pretty interesting flavour combinations and we have been loving these bacon and maple syrup ones at work lately.

YSL bag - no word of a lie, this bag has made every outfit look extra special. I especially love wearing it in a more casual context as you may have noticed in my last outfit post here!

House magazines - house and home magazines are my magazine of choice at the moment. If you frequently pin interiors images on Pinterest then this right here is your porn.

New shoes- I was naughty and picked up new pairs of shoes in the Office sale. Zero originality on my part as both pairs are tan and suede... but one pair are peep toe and the others are slip ons, so that's different enough right?!

Benefit Sun Beam - I have wanted to pick one of these up for the longest time and this week I finally took the plunge. It makes my skin feel all kinds of summery - even when it's grey and rainy out. #winning

Jo Malone - when the weather turns hotter, I don't like to wear anything too heavy on my skin. Jo Malone's earl grey and cucumber cologne may sound weird, but is subtle and fresh and has been my staple this week

Nature - I'm loving all the pretty colours at the moment. Especially yellow. I have a massive thing for yellow at the moment (particularly when paired with grey interiors a la Pinterest). Pinecones may seem like a weird choice, but my cat has been basking in the sun playing with them and it's all kinds of cute

L'Oreal Perfect Match - nothing sucks more than when you go to pick up more highlighter and your go to brand that you are loyal to and never stray from has sold out. And then discovering that your "back-up" option has also sold out. I bit the bullet and tried a new product this week and you know? I've been pleasantly surprised. True to its name, it blends really well.

What have you been loving this week?

* A huge thanks to Farfetch for the bag of my dreams!

OOTD // A monochrome look with YSL and FarFetch

When it comes to fashion, I'm a bit of a colourphobe. If you were to delve into my wardrobe, you would be metaphorically drowning in a sea of black, white and grey. I'm all about that monochrome life, you see. The other weekend I got dressed in - you've guessed it - my typical monochrome get-up and ventured to the woods to catch Pokemon for a nice day out.

Top // Jeans // Bag // Shoes (old)

I'm so happy it's warming up as it means I can ditch the tights, boots and knitwear, and feel the sun on my skin FINALLY. I wanted to wear something simple and classic, without taking the shine away from my bag, as it's such a statement piece. And you can't get any more simple or classic than a pair of black jeans. I live in my black jeans. Everyone has their preferred cut / fit at Topshop, but my favourite is the Leigh range as it's not too high waisted, nor too low rise. The top I bought from Topshop a little while ago and it's been hanging in my wardrobe ever since, begging to be worn. And now I'm making up for lost time! I'm loving the off the shoulder trend at the moment - a white bardot top is so much more interesting than a bog standard plain white tee, don't you think?

I love how the bag pulls together the look. Suitable both day and night, this bag is a classic and will never go out of style. Check out that lettering. It's unlike anything I've ever seen before on a designer bag. It's just beautiful. A true work of art.

It's a small bag without being a small bag - you can still fit plenty in it. I'm used to carrying around large and heavy bags, so this was a lovely change and I feel myself becoming the small bag convert! I mean, do I really need to be carrying everything but the kitchen sink around with me?! I think not.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this look :) How would you style a bag like this? I have a few more outfit posts lined up with the bag to show it in a more casual context - so watch this space!

* A huge thanks to Farfetch for the bag of my dreams!

Friday 29 July 2016

OOTD // Keeping things casual

When you see designer bags on Instagram and Pinterest, the owner of the insanely beautiful bag is usually all legs, wearing the most coveted of outfits and skyscraper heels, with the air of having just stepped off the catwalk, en route to their next Fashion Week show. You rarely see a designer bag in a casual context with straight-out-of-bed-hair. Until now that is.

Lazy weekends mean I want to be comfortable in what I'm wearing. My go to weekend staple has to be denim shorts and a tee and / or knitwear. This sort of outfit is great for lazying around the house in, or heading down the road to pick up groceries / going to the post office / other boring aspects of adult life. Simple but effective.

My favourite piece of knitwear I own has to be this sandy coloured number (just £13!). It's fairly light-weight compared to other knitwear which makes it a great transitional piece for spring / autumn / typical British weather and is great for layering with. It's also slightly over-sized which I love as it means it can hang off one shoulder all sassy like.

Jumper (Forever 21) //  YSL bag // Shorts (old)

Another personal favourite is this chunky khaki knit. It's not a colour I'd usually go for (it's not black, white or grey for starters!), but it's a lovely deep forest sort of green and looks ace worn with blue denim.

Khaki jumper (Forever 21 old)

Another F21 jumper... this post is starting to feel like it's sponsored by Forever 21! (it's not for the record!). I just genuinely love Forever 21 and I do pick up 90% of my knitwear from there.

So there you have it. Two looks with a designer bag in a more casual context. Next time I am taking casual to a whole other level, exploring if designer bags and 'pyjama chic' are a marriage made in heaven or not - so it will be interesting gauging your reactions on that one! Do you like designer bags styled in a more casual way? Or do you prefer a glossier look?

* A huge thanks to Farfetch for the bag of my dreams!

Tuesday 26 July 2016

6 ways to style a maxi dress

When it comes to finding the perfect summer dress, it's all about versatility. Finding a piece that doesn't look out of place come rain or shine; that can dressed up or down; and taken from day to night. Here are my top 6 ways of how to style a maxi dress this summer.

1. Is a skirt? Is a dress?
Just because something is labelled as a dress, doesn't mean you have to wear it as a dress. I like mixing up my maxi dresses by wearing them as skirts too. Simply wear a boyfriend tee, crop top, or a shirt on top to give your dress a new lease of life.

Maxi dress

2. .... or maybe it's a top?

Same rules apply. But as a top. Why not try tucking your dress into a pair of shorts / jeans / different skirt?

3. Why ruin a classic?
Appreciate the dress for what is is. Particularly when faced with a pretty print like this one. Make the print the main star of the show, and stick to basic and delicate jewellery and gladiator sandals. I adore the layered detail on this top which gives it a two-piece feel.

4. Dressed to the nines
Maxi dresses for me are usually casual comfort for those swelteringly hot days. But who's to say that maxi dresses can't be dressed up? Team yours with a fitted blazer / cropped jacket to draw attention to the slimmest part of your silhouette: your waist. Extra style points for incorporating a waist belt!

5. Embrace your grunge side
Why not try a leather jacket and ankle boots (if unlike me you actually have a pair!) for a grunge inspired twist?

6. Chilly summer evenings
You know the deal. Day time you are struggling in blisteringly hot weather, but come sun down, you feel the goosebumps pricking up on your arms. A over-sized knit makes the perfect cover up for chilly summer evenings.

And that's it for my maxi dress styling tips! If you have any maxi dresses hanging in your wardrobe, dig them out, and experiment to your heart's content - maxi dresses are so versatile and you can get so much wear out of them. Fully obsessed with #ihavethisthingswithfloors on Instagram, I fell in love with this blue tile print maxi dress which reminded me of the prettiest Moroccan tiles. So unbelievably floaty and comfortable, this dress will definitely be getting a lot of use from me this summer!

*Although this maxi dress was very kindly provided by JD Williams, summer dress styling tips and love of maxi dresses all my own!

Tuesday 19 July 2016

Finding the perfect dress to last you through the summer - no matter the weather

What type of dress could this be, I hear you ask. A maxi dress? A bandeau? No my friends, I am proposing The Shirt Dress. I love a shirt. But then again, I do love a dress. Now imagine the two getting together and this item of clothing being the result... it's a thing of beauty.

Shirt dress *

I own this dress in cassis which is a beautiful berry sort of colour, and cries out for a matching berry lip. This dress also comes in khaki and black, which given the wonderful fit and feel of the dress, is making me seriously consider picking up the other two colours to complete the set. Particularly now that they're in the sale for a mere £30.

The sleeves can rolled up or down - depending on what takes your fancy - and the belt helps to create some shape by nipping you in at the waist. The material of the dress is lightweight and thin - but by no means see through - making it the ideal choice for summer getaways, day trips and the like.

For my summer inspired look, I wanted to keep things simple, to let the dress do the talking. It's such a beautiful colour, it makes enough of a statement as it is. I teamed mine with delicate jewellery and Valentino style criss-cross flats. However there is a lot of potential to style a shirt dress like this. My top tips:

  1. Wear with lace-up-the-leg gladiator sandals to emphasise tanned pins. Go for a tan coloured sandal to contrast beautifully against that lovely berry colour
  2. Wear with a large floppy hat and shades for the ultimate summer look. 
  3. Try a chunky knit on top and ankle boots for an off duty model sort of look. This will transform the dress into a button up skirt for an alternative use 
  4. When travelling, for the ultimate capsule wardrobe, why not repeat wear another day, but this time with the dress tucked into high waisted shorts or jeans? This will give the dress a new lease of life and will save you valuable suitcase space for bringing back souvenirs and / or duty free ;)

Hope you like the dress and that this piece allows you to find inspiration for how to incorporate shirt dresses into your summer wardrobe. On me it's a pretty decent length meaning it's a perfectly acceptable item for me to wear to the office or for other occasions where I need to be a little more covered up!

* Dress very kindly provided by JD Williams but as ever, all opinions are my own!

Friday 8 July 2016

FESTIVAL STYLE // Palm tree print tee

Festival style for me is all about having fun with colours, prints and textures. My favourite print this season? Tropical print. Think palm trees and pineapples. Tropical print is increasingly cropping up on the high street - so much so, that it's edging it's way into homeware and interiors too, what with copper pineapple ornaments and green leafy cushions. Whilst floral crowns continue to be the go to fashion accessory to complete your look this festival season, why not take the inspired-by-nature look one step further with palm tree print?

My favourite offering on the high street right now has to be this palm tree cami. Super, super soft and lightweight, it's the perfect layering piece, should your festival go from thunderstorms and muddy puddles to heatwave (we can dream!)

For my festival inspired look, I teamed with white cut off shorts and sandals. Forever optimistic, I incorporated peep toe sandals into my festival look as by some stroke of luck, I haven't yet been to a festival where it's been muddy or raining!

Therapy tropical / palm tree print top* - £20

I love the different shape of the neckline and straps, rendering it not quite halter neck, but also not a traditional strappy top as we know it either. I find some tops look better worn with a skirt / shorts / trousers [delete as appropriate], however this isn't the case with this top which seems to go with everything! It's a truly versatile piece which looks equally good with crisp white jeans as it does with denim cut offs.

Now I'm festival ready, all I need now is a cider in my hand and a festival to go! Who's with me?

*Top very kindly provided by House of Fraser, love of festival style and tropical print my own!