NOMINATE ME BiB 2013 STYLE FINALIST BiB 2014 STYLE

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Monday, 2 March 2015

I've come over all Gucci

Not literally that is as I haven't won the lottery since I last blogged.  Interestingly, would I carry on blogging if I won the lottery?  Well, seeing as I reckon I'd probably be bored on my Caribbean island day in day out with nothing but Net a Porter to peruse, then yes, I'd still give it a go....  In all seriousness I don't think I'd ever give up bagging a bargain.  There isn't a lot I love more than someone admiring something and being able to say that it's from Dorothy Perkins or River Island as opposed to Isabel Marant or Marni. (of which I own nothing so heaven's knows why people assume most of my stuff is more expensive!) 

Anyway, back to the picture that is in all the glossies at the moment and has had my salivating.  

Voila.  All hail The Gucci.

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I love all of it.  I would walk around all Spring and Summer like this if I thought I could get away with it.  However the chances of me buying any of it is zero.  Minus zero.  Buying the actual Gucci products that is.  


But that's not to say we can't try to recreate it.  I wouldn't say any of it needs to be Gucci (which is handy) and I'm sure we can have a good look at sourcing some similar things from the High Street. 

So let's start with clearly the star of the show.  The bag (although I have to say, the jacket went to the final bell but the bag was the knock out).

Here we have the real deal. 

Gucci Jackie Soft Suede Shoulder Bag £1440



I'm also absolutely loving this one below that I found - I'm very very much taken by the classic green and red strap.  Which is an extra, there's also a suede one that comes with it.  

Lady Web Suede Shoulder bag from Gucci £1200



Whilst I was on my designer bag porn fest (which didn't last very long as my unattainable wish list was growing legs by the minute), I did happen to come across this little beauty.  Which is perfect if you don't have small children, a dog and only eat beige food.

Ok so going perhaps/definitely in the wrong direction but this is just too gorgeous not to put in here as well.

Moujik Medium Suede and leather tote £2300 by Saint Laurent



But there are some designer bags which aren't necessarily mega mega bucks.  Ok, they're not chump change by any stretch of the imagination and this is definitely the price bracket that I prefer to shop in. (if I'm looking for an expensive bag - there are some equally as good much cheaper ones out there)   Very much an investment piece still but not quite as painful or in the realms of insanity as some.

Kay Suede Tote from See by Chloe £386 from My Theresa




And in a lighter shade (with a leather base and leather handles) £410 from Net A Porter



Another much lesser known designer brand which is more than you'd pay on the high street but less than the majority of the ground floor of Selfridges, is Campomaggi.  

I first bought one of these bags from Plumo, probably five years ago and it is still one of my favourites.  I absolutely love it and wish I could explain properly how fabulous the leather is.  It's slouchy but stiff at the same time, it has an amazing aged patina to it and just improves the longer you have it and the more often you use it. 

Yes, I love my Chloe, my Prada, the Mulberrys and the Anyas but if there was one bag that I had to say had the most longevity, it would be my Campomaggi.  They mostly come in this rich, decadent, vintage shade of cognac. 

Campomaggi washed leather shoulder bag £428.85






Caramel Saddlebag £498 by Campomaggi from Plumo  I cannot stop looking at this one......



This one isn't Campomaggi but is still from Plumo where they do have the best selection of slightly unusual things you're perhaps not going to find on the high street.  A sort of Anthropologie online.  

Leather Bucket Bag £139 from Plumo




So can we get what we want on the High Street?  Well actually yes, there are a few options out there. 

It probably hasn't escaped your notice that I've never mentioned Pauls Boutique as being top of my "brands I love" list.  Or even on it.  Or even on the "brands I don't mind" list.  

However.... never judge a book by its cover as I saw this in a mag and my initial thought was that it was more than reminiscent of a Gucci one.  

Pauls Boutique Brown Suede tote £130







Leather now and it doesn't necessarily have to be suede to be boho.  I love this one from Grafea (actually I really really like this one) 

Grafea Leather Across Body in Tan £135



One thing that strikes me as being very 70s boho is a chunky buckle.  I'm not sure why, but they do.  And combined with a tan leather bag, I think these would be the perfect addition to a wardrobe to bring it right into the new season.  I've also found some leather ones which are very cost effective. 

Patricia Bag from White Stuff £32.50



More expensive but larger (and to me, these have an old school Marc Jacobs look to them)

Fossil Riley Leather Top Zip Shoulder bag in Camel £139






Fossil Riley Leather Hobo bag in Camel £189




Moving onto leather look now, so a better price point - this is more reminiscent of the Saint Laurent one to me.  It's not super slouchy boho but I think worn cross body, it's the perfect compromise for those who aren't ready to go full on hippy chick.

Fiorelli Casey Satchel £65



This one has a more vintage tinge to the leather (leather look to be fair....) and I love the shape. 

Fiorelli Tessa Large Bowling Bag on offer at the moment from £65 to £52



This is a combo of the above two (my fave of this sort) 

Nica Melena Mini Bowler Bag £49




If you are looking for smaller (and this is super mini!) then I love the scallop detailing on this one from ASOS. 

ASOS Mini Scallop Cross Body £16



Another mini bag, although slightly on the larger side.  Again a complete bargain and yes, a nod to 70s without full on swinging suede flares. 

Tan Zip front mini duffel bag from New Look £15.99




Nearly at the end now with one from left field, as it's not that lovely vintage chestnut brown.  But it does have the suede feel to it and what I think is a modern boho vibe (if that's possible.....)  It could be smart, it could be worn with flares and paisley.  It's not going to last forever but as a Spring pick me up, you could do worse than use this every day. 

Mink Tassel Side Zip Bucket Bag from New Look £22.99 This is my buy of the day.  I love it.


However I've kept the best till last.  Now I know, I KNOW I said I wasn't doing fringing.. but this one from Accessorize is like badge of 70s honour.  It screams Boho and should come with its own pair of flares and a silk print scarf (fear not I have those a plenty soon...). 

An amazing price for leather - this is small enough to work as an evening bag but is ample sized to cart what you need around for the day (assuming you don't actually take the kitchen sink with you....) 

Leather Fringe Across Body bag £45 from Accessorize




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Are you sorted on the bag front for this Spring?  I think there are loads more options to explore so this definitely isn't the last I'll have to say on the subject. 

Outfit from yesterday.  After the excesses of Saturday, a 9am rugby jaunt was slightly on the optimistic side and with the 8yr old not having his session till 10am, I dropped The Husband and the 6yr old off (he's never normally able to watch him as he coaches the older team so he was happy to go and see him tag his little heart out for an hour!) and then dropped the 8yr old down later.  Preferable being a taxi mum than having to stand in the cold feeling slightly worse for wear.....

A day of cooking with the kids (don't ask - they love it.....) and whilst The Husband went to watch the rugby, the 10 yr old and I had a Castle marathon on the sofa.  Bliss....... 


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Black Bat sweatshirt - Zoe Karssen
Real Straight distressed jeans - Gap
Black jersey pea jacket - James Perse
Black pony skin skater shoes - Next 
Black Diego bag - Alexander Wang

Tomorrow I'll be back with multi functional clothing (not ones that make the tea as well - ones that can work on many levels.  It makes sense, honest guv...)

Sunday, 1 March 2015

How can it be March already?

April and then it's May.  That's virtually around the corner. 

And come May, I have quite a few dates already in the diary.  For which dresses will be needed.  But the main issue that I've found over the past couple of years is that it's not necessarily warm.  It might be.. it also may be downright chilly.  

However I think I've come up with a solution (is this a rather nifty excuse to buy new dresses - hell yes) 

I am all over Shirt Dresses.  I now have a couple of these and I love them.  They have that perfect quality of being able to be worn all year round.  The ideal dresses for when it is a tad nippy and anything strappy or, god forbid, totally sleeveless, just isn't going to happen.  Especially when you have legs on show as well.  Far too much flesh exposed to the elements with way too much opportunity for plucked chicken goosebumps a plenty...... (there is only so much magic fake tan can work) 

If you have your arms covered though, then somehow, it makes having your legs out that little bit easier.  Baby steps...

Into the Autumn they will look great with the Over The Knee Boots that I promise you, we will all be sporting. 

For now, easy to dress up with heels but I also think they work really well for more casual affairs with flats.

Jacket wise, I wear mine with blazers, I've worn them with denim jackets and they also look great with a little leather number as well.   Alternatively a mid thigh dress or cocoon coat is the perfect addition for a dressier occasion.

To make things even more attractive, we are settling nicely into offer season and it seems silly not to take advantage. 

There's currently 20% off at Warehouse at John Lewis (price match...) and their dresses are stunning this season. 

Shirt dresses are a go here.  And the scarf print one perfectly ticks the 70s category box too so we're win win.  This would be amazing with opaques whilst it's still on the chilly side - gorgeous with bare legs as well.

Warehouse Aztec Scarf Print Dress £38.40





My beloved Khaki again at Warehouse - this with leopard print or snake print would be amazing. 

Warehouse Shirt Dress in khaki now £38.40




Also 20% off Boden and this is off everything, not just dresses.  I think it ends today, so go forth and shop!  Code is X3X5

Printed Shirt Dress £89 pre discount in the navy daisy.  Love love love it with the ankle boots.








And in the multi deco floral print.  This is growing on me.....



Also 20% off at Coast at John Lewis and this monochrome would work for dinners and those special occasions. 

Coast Mono Adlina Shirt Dress now £92







Hippy vibe a plenty at M&S Paisley Print Shirt Dress from M&S £39.50



Star Print Shirt Dress from M&S £39.50



Super 70s at M&S again and this isn't going to suit everyone but if this is a colour that works for you, it is so unusual and would look amazing on.  You could team with camels or whites for Summer but I also love the idea of navy or black. (I do love the idea of camels or white more though, it has to be said....)

No Peep Cotton Rich Lace Shirt Dress from M&S £45



More print at French Connection.  They have some gorgeous things in this season.

Misty Mountain Shirt Dress was £125 now £85.50






Again in the sale at FCUK - the Ali Gator Shirt Dress was £110 now £39



The Deco Dream Drop Waist Shirt Dress FCUK £130  This would work if you stick with the monochrome colours but you could also add either a print like a leopard or another colour - anything that takes your fancy to be honest.  Love the idea of the M&S black and white stripe shoes from the other day.




There is plain out there - a purple/blue shade (apparently this is more purple than cobalt) in the sale from LK Bennett.  Plus belted which I know works better for lots of people.

LK Bennett Brindi Belted Shirt Dress was £195 now £125



More plain in the sale at Matches 

Freda Isla Dress was £425 now £127



Love the 70s shade of burgundy, also 70% off at £127  again by Freda.




Finishing with some gems in the sale at Matches - these are classic DVF styles which just happen to be in last season's print and are therefore bargaintastic now. 

Prita Dress from DVF at Matches was £350 now £140



T72 Dress from DVF was £390 now £156



Bruna Dress was £410 now £164



So I have my couple of dresses - I have to say I'm probably most tempted by the Topshop ones I had on my khaki thread.  Or the Freda one above is probably worth a look as well for the amazing discount.  I already have both leopard and snakeskin accessories which is half the battle for an outfit. 

Finishing with outfit from yesterday - fabulous day in London with a lovely group of Bloggers.  Today I am absolutely shattered to say the least.  And with all those Bloggers, I can't believe I didn't get anyone to take a photo.  So this is me with the tipsy eyes in the mirror again, very late doors.


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Black silk shirt - Zara
Black pleather peg leg trousers - Zara
Black Tux blazer - Hush
White Stan Smiths - adidas 

I am off to lounge on the sofa and eat my bodyweight in pitta chips and then a takeaway.  Up and at 'em tomorrow.  I'm considering doing a kettlebells class.  Considering......

Friday, 27 February 2015

Come on Eileen


Brace yourselves.  

It was only a matter of time and I was planning on studiously ignoring them for the majority of the season but they have become the elephant in the room.  I fear I can't be rude about them if I haven't even tried them and so I put myself out there and have been the 42 year old guinea pig. 

We are talking dungarees.  Opinions on these is going to be divided to say the least.  Feedback on Instagram already has contrasted from yes they can work (not necessarily the way I was sporting them on the pic, to be fair...) to, they should be consigned purely to those under the age of 3. 

And I will admit, I was in the latter category.  Unless you are a toddler, at the very least work on children's tv or you are Demi Moore in Ghost, then no. Just no no no no.  

Along with looking like a mechanic in our boiler suit, we can channel Decorating Chic in our dungarees.  I was not remotely optimistic about these. 

So let's start with the pictorial evidence of how I got on.  Classic Dungarees in blue denim.  Firstly I had to suffer the look of pity/mirth from the 14 yr old sales assistants in numerous shops where I asked "do you have any dungarees?".  The answer was (with a slight snigger) no, in Dorothy Perkins, River Island, Oasis and M&S (although I'm not sure she even knew what I was talking about and wanted rid of me as soon as possible.  I may have had a deranged look in my eye at this point, the poor woman).

Mango and Topshop did come up trumps (although hilariously, the delightful young girl, once she'd got over her incredulation at someone the same age as her mum asking for dungarees, did ask me if I wanted long or short ones.  "GOOD GOD, long ones" was my very swift retort.... ). 

When I say they came up trumps, I meant that they had some in stock. 

So here is what the Mango dark denim Dungarees should look like £49.99



And here we are on me.  Clearly the fact I'm not wearing sunglasses is what is letting me down....

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I assumed that it would be better to size up to have them on the baggy side.  I assumed wrong.  I think it would take another person approximately 40 years younger to make these work.   They didn't look cool and baggy on me, they just made me look wide.  Plus they were very short in the body which is unusual for Mango who are normally good at making things fit tallies.  So I also have the most amazing camel toe.  If you adjusted the straps (oh I am ahead of you wise fashionistas), then the bib bit sat fetchingly under my insignificant boobage.  The list of reasons why these were minging was long. 

Ok to be totally fair, the black top underneath it maybe doesn't do it any favours. 

On the upside, the denim was lovely.  Soft and lived in and I did think hmmm maybe.... Before I tried them on.  On someone a different shape, maybe these will work.

And styling is the main thing that makes these work.  There is more of that coming later but suffice to say I wasn't going to be beaten and had hoped for more success at Topshop.

That'll be a no.

And alas, they seem to have sold out of these ones online.  There were one pair left in the shop and they were a 10 so yes, these are probably tighter than you would want.  Do I think they'd be better in a larger size?  I think my face says it all...... 

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But... but but but..... a strange thing happened.  I tried them on a black pair. 


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And I liked them.  And the more I looked at them, the more I liked them. 


Needless to say, on any analysis, I would not plan on wearing these with a cropped top.  Just in case anyone was vaguely worried at my mental health (and I know there are friends who are slightly concerned even at my suggestion that the Home Counties is ready for dungarees....) 


Did I run like a gazelle to the cash point?  Ok so no, not exactly, but I did think that these might work.  My bestie later on (through her tears of laughter) did point out why?  Why would you wear these and not wear jeans?

Well I've been thinking and I have an answer.  A muffin hider.  I have hoards of tees that I've bought over the years - lovely (expensive) thin summery, drapey numbers.  That are too sheer to wear without something underneath and too drapey in that they manage to hug a roll of fat when I sit down (or even when I stand up, depending on the jeans.  Not all of my jeans are high waisted enough and I do depend on loose jumpers, shirts and sweats to wear many of them.)

But dungarees could be the answer to my prayers.   The perfect foil to all those tees that sit forlornly in a drawer and never get worn.  But what do you wear on your feet and on your top, jacket wise? 

So I thought I'd have a quick trip over to Pinterest for some inspiration.   The fact that all the pics are of much younger lasses (pointed out by the bessie who may be getting ditched v soon) I'm not going to let bother me.  There were some looks that just didn't appeal at all so obviously I've not included them.

Ignoring the fact I'm not Olivia Palermo... she's an amazing inspiration.


Do you think she has drunk eyes here...? I could be in love with her just a tiny bit more... I'm thinking about these with a black blazer, white shirt and leopard print stilettos?  Have I lost my tiny aged mind?  (I think I'd go with a fitted shirt as opposed to a voluminous one....) 


I think I have shoes like this still from Clarks a couple of years ago (did I throw them out... yes probably.... note to self, check attic) 


Dare I say it, what do we think about the ecru?


Now this is where I've had a slight reality check.  I am neither young, blond, tanned nor toned so the chances of me looking like a geriatric painter as opposed to cute ditsy thing in ecru dungarees are high.  Very very high.

And whilst I've written off blue dungarees, I have to say, I could (I won't, but I could..) have my head turned by this ensemble.  However, swap blue for black and I still think this outfit could work.  My trench is slightly longer but all in all, it's a good starting point.




So, I think there are ones that could work....  I'm thinking with a little blazer, one of the aforementioned plethora of tees and I'm going for ballet flats.  I think the juxtaposition of the casual (maybe.... maybe.... slightly mutton) look with the classic shoes and blazer... well in my head that will look ok. 

I'm ridiculously tempted by the black ones.  I might go with what I've tried and get the Topshop ones but on Instagram, there was much love for the black ones from Next. 




If you wanted to invest then they do have them at Whistles.... (I have to say this doesn't make my top 10, nay 20, list of things to invest in....) 



If you did fancy ecru then there are some at Topshop which I'm not trying to get excited about... (think paintbrush, think paintbrush.....) 




Now I've definitely decided blue isn't for me (famous last words... I am going to make note....), but I can see how they would still appeal.

Dark Blue at Topshop - same shape as the ecru ones.


Mid Blue Denim Dungarees from Next £35 (if mid blue takes your fancy.... these are a no for me.  I can get my head around the black.  But I'm at a loss when it comes to these.)


And to be honest, there aren't that many others out there.  I do think there will be more filtering through into the Summer but at the moment, they haven't made the mainstream High Street.  They may be are veering towards the dodgy end of the muttonometer but hey, nothing ventured, nothing gained.  I'm going in. 

Big lunch in London with some blogger friends tomorrow which I am ridiculously looking forward to.  Dare I see if The Husband will swerve by a Topshop on the way home and pick me up a pair of these so I can wear them tomorrow...  I'd say I've got two hopes and one of them's Bob. 

So yesterday, both my hair and my hems were nailed by the rain.  First outing with sneakers and I have been reminded why I have been in love with skinnies for all these years.  These jeans though owe me nothing.  They're probably 8 years old and whilst seemingly fit everywhere, the sight above the waistband isn't a pretty one....  However am toying up whether to actually keep the M&S kick flare ones I bought as these do the same job.  Would be fine with a peasant top or loose blouse over the top.... And I have other high waisted (super high waisted - thing Popeye) Tibi ones I found at the back of the cupboard.  I'm thinking I'm going for the dungarees instead.

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White scallop collar - Zoe Karssen
Lilac jumper - ASOS men
Mid blue flared jeans - Zara
Navy blazer - Zara
Cracked leather Stan Smiths - adidas
Camel bag - Prada

So it's confession time.  Who else will be joining my decorating crew?  Come on... and style tips - how are you planning on wearing yours?   Or are you in the camp of "she's finally lost it"...?....  Answer on a postcard please.