Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Wish list

I've got my eye on a few key pieces to update my wardrobe, all with a nod to the new season. The pyjama trend seems to be sticking around and so the Topshop silk shirt fits in with that nicely. And the return of the kitten heel has me smitten with these red shoes from Zara, which I'll pair with some black trousers (maybe those very versatile silk joggers from Topshop) and a striped Breton top. I'm impressed with the new jeans collection from ASOS, with these Brady jeans being my pick of the bunch.

I've included a fair few nods to monochrome trend which has recently put in an appearance, with the Reiss dress and H&M top, and there's been a fair amount of lace around, which is where the Reiss vest fits in - with buttons down the grey marl back, it's much nicer in the flesh, and looks equally good when worn back to front. And the red Reiss dress I couldn't resist for its great colour, length and sleeves, plus day to night versatility and above all pockets.

And lastly my two addictions continue, with the wear-with-anything jacket being a bargain from House of Fraser, and the statement necklace being a surprise find in Urban Outfitters, where I rarely find anything I like. So now it's decision time... you got any guidance for me?

Top row, left to right

Silk floral buttoned shirt, £68 Topshop Boutique; Monochrome top, £29.99 H&M; Silk vest, £29.99 H&M; Reversible triple spike necklace, £18 Urban Outfitters; Lace front button back tank, £49 Reiss.

Middle row, left to right
Zip hem silk joggers £65 Topshop Boutique; Giselle dress, £159 Reiss; Brady slim boyfriend jeans, £38 ASOS; Hawn fit and flare dress, £110 Reiss; Ikat quilted jacket, £66.50 House of Fraser.

Bottom row
Leather kitten heel shoes, £49.99 Zara

Thursday, 21 February 2013

London calling

A little trip to London to celebrate Popeye's birthday had me in the usual dilemma of choosing an outfit which kept me toastie whilst avoiding total overheating on an over-stuffed tube. I settled on my "Oscar The Grouch Jacket" which is neat and lightweight, but keeps me warm enough when I'm schlepping about town in a hurry.

This jacket has no buttons, so when I need to keep the wind out, I fasten it with a brooch. I've had this one for years, since I picked it up for pennies in a charity shop, but was reminded of the Canandian Maple Leaf brooch Kate Middleton wore for the Queen's Jubilee.

We settled into an early weekend by taking the Friday off and doing a little shopping - Popeye had his eye on an umbrella, and if you're in the market for a brolly, then James Smith & Son is the place to go. I was amazed by the variation, and oh my, the prices.

{James Smith & Son}

First stop for any birthday cake is Konditor & Cook - a real Willy Wonka style shop. I love their Magic Cakes, but went with the Tiramisu cupcake this time. And the nearby Real Food Market at the Southbank Centre was on, which is always a treat to wander around. Drinks and dinner followed, plus a concert at the Royal Festival Hall.

{Konditor & Cook}

{Real Food Market at Southbank Centre - every Friday to Sunday}

The rest of the weekend was filled with a little vintage shopping and a mammoth present wrapping session. I'm a lazy wrapper, so enjoyed using my Knot & Bow stickers instead of Sellotape. I love a nice  sticker.

{stickers from Knot & Bow, tissue paper from Sainsburys}

{new vintage cream leather bag}

{bright pink chain strap shoulder bag}

A little sort-out of my wardrobe unearthed this pink card-style jacket, which a friend found in Kuala Lumpur and brought back for me - with the weather warming up I might just be able to don it soon, with a pair of jeans and some slipper shoes.

And a Sunday afternoon walk nicely prefaced the descent from a three-day weekend back into the working week.

{Sunday seafront stroll}

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Copy cat: navy blue leather shopper

I really came up trumps with this vintage Jaeger nay-blue leather shopper, which I found on eBay. I was looking for a very simple blue leather bag, which was specifically navy, and would be big enough to fit my considerable haul of paraphernalia which I insist of lugging around every day.  It can be a bit of a tense moment when ripping open an eBay parcel, waiting to see if what's in the jiffy matches up with your interpretation of the photos. And this bag didn't let me down.

If you're looking for something similar, then the Massimo Dutti version below is excellent.

{vintage Jaeger leather shopper, navy blue}

{all the best bags are...}

{leather shopper, £99.50 Massimo Dutti}

Copy cat: blue pleated dress

Here's a little blue number I bought from a vintage shop, carrying on the pattern that every lovely dress I see at the moment is blue... It's not often I find a great dress that really suits me, as I'm quite specific in my requirements, and yet when I do, blue is definitely the colour. And then when I was doing a little internet browsing the other day on the Warehouse website, I was amazed to see almost a dead ringer of my vintage number. Spot the difference...

{vintage blue dress}

{pleat detail}

{round neckline}

{dress, £58 from Warehouse}

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Outfit inspiration: Marie Dessuant

I enjoyed reading this blog post by Reiss, featuring Parisian designed Marie Dessuant. I pounced on the outfit in the photo below as a great outfit fall back - one for every occasion, which could take me from work to play with the addition of a statement necklace. I realised that I already had a variation of these two pieces in my wardrobe, and so within seconds, my white shirt and trousers = excellent new outfit. And in the course of writing this, I realised I haven't yet showcased my bargain £1 white shirt, which I found on the reduced rail in a charity shop. It's got a neat little collar and is perfect for buttoning right up to the top, and wearing underneath a crew neck jumper. And the trousers were given to me by Bob, when she was doing a wardrobe clear-out, which means the sum total of this outfit is running at £1.

{also found this colour block shirt, £160 Jaeger which would go with my outfit - above right - trousers from Cos}
Marie, I like your style.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

A weekend snapshot

Some snapshots from last weekend: I packed in an awful lot, and legged it to Portishead for an overnight stay. I took a detour to drive over the Clifton Suspension Bridge - perhaps my favourite road in the whole world, or at least a toss up between that and the Runcorn Bridge.

{driving over Clifton Suspension Bridge - the sight of it will thrill me forever}

{was taken with the nautical charts as wallpaper in H&W, Portishead}

{new necklace from H&M}

{flowers... feels like spring is just around the corner}

{magazine subscriptions arrived...}

{ it was time for tea - was seduced by these new tubs by Tunnock's - tub will become my new sewing storage}

{my new thing = baking a ham. pour on mayple syrup, chutney, coca-cola or honey - big result, minimal effort}

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

New season necessities

A new job and a long awaited pay day has given me time to assess what might be some welcome additions to my wardrobe. These lovely items below are all serious contenders. Some long days and too much time on my feet means that things need to be practical, but at the same time look smart and put together. Some fairly neutral colours and little print means that outfits are easy to coordinate and everything goes with my existing wardrobe. 

Top row, left to right
Cohen gold earrings by Dyrberg Kern, £59 House of Fraser; Zip back crew jumper, £28 Warehouse; Blazer with elbow patches, £49.99 Zara (or this one is also excellent); Aztec boucle jacket, £68 Topshop.

Middle row, left to right
Silk shirt with printed polka dots and stripes, £54.95 Massimo Dutti; Side pocket dress, £59 Cos; Oversized silk utility shirt, £45 River Island (or this colour block one has also got me tempted); Maddy contrast waistband trouser, £95 Whistles.

Bottom row, left to right
Combination Parka, £79.95 Zara; Velvet slipper, £69.95 Massimo Dutti; Gold and neon green rope triangle necklace, £6.99 New Look; Midi dress with long sleeve, £28 ASOS.