WARDROBE ESSENTIALS: THE WHITE SHIRT

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I’d like to introduce a new feature on my blog, the wardrobe essentials. Whilst everyone has their own individual style, I stand by the idea that there’s a number of staple pieces which should be in everyone’s wardrobes, pieces that are versatile and slot into anyone’s sense of dress. I really enjoy aspects of styling, so I thought it may be fun to create a little series of these posts, where I’ll pick a wardrobe basic and list a few things I’d personally pair it with.

The White Shirt (1, 2, 3) is the definition of a staple item in my eyes. A piece which features on the high street every season, you can find it in styles to suit any age, body shape or general preference. I think most people assume that shirts are a formal piece and one that is worn mainly in smart occasions, but there’s plenty of ways they can be worn down and casual. Now there’s plenty I wear with my (rather large) collection of white shirts, but I thought I’d pick four pieces I pair with them the most.

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A structured jacket (1, 2, 3): Personally, as someone who hoards jackets and coats, I tend to favour plain pieces rather those which are patterned. I think coats are those pieces that can last an age in your wardrobe, so I tend to go for classic colours and shapes. The three I’ve linked are three that have really stood out to me recently, the neutral colours being perfect dress up or down with a shirt. And since I have a love for the 70s fashion at the minute, I couldn’t not include that Mango Suede jacket of dreams. I’ve been tempted to buy it for months now!

A pair of trousers (1, 2, 3): Unlike coats, I love to have fun when picking out trousers. From bold prints and bright colours, to wide leg to flare to cropped skinnies, anything really goes. As someone who’s pretty short, I do tend to struggle a little to find those that’ll flatter me, but I think that’s what I like so much about trousers; there’ll be a style that fits everyone. Again, going back to the 70s trend, there’s a whole lot of flared and wide-leg trousers in stores at the minute – and as scary as they look, I can’t get enough of them. Don’t diss them unless you’ve tried them, I think you’d be surprised how flattering they can be!

An a-line skirt (1, 2, 3): Now if you’ve been reading my blog a while, you know I have a thing for A-Line skirts – it’s my daily uniform. I find them incredibly flattering on my pear body shape whilst also making my legs appear much longer than they are, and best of all, you don’t have to worry that it’s going to fly up when it’s a little windy outside. Again it’s quite a universal style and is in the high street every season really, just in different prints and fabrics. For instance, at the minute look out for buttons, denim and utility-inspired prints.

A pinafore (1, 2, 3): Maybe I’ve just watched every episode of Gossip Girl one too many times, but there’s just something I really love about wearing pinafores. Now I’m not talking a Blair Waldorf inspired structured piece specifically or something that looks like you’d wear it at primary school, I tend to class any dress (or playsuit!) that could be layered over a shirt as being a pinafore. From high-necks to strappy sundresses, I love them all year round.

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What would you pair with a white shirt? What are your wardrobe essentials?

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C’EST LA VIE

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Outfit Details: Top – Topshop, Jeans – Dorothy Perkins, Coat – H&M, Shoes – Primark,
Bag – Matalan, Hat – Primark
Just a quick post from me today (if you follow me via Twitter you’ll may have seen the reasons) but basically, life has got in the way a little. Some of it very exciting which I’m sure I’ll be talking about over on here soon, and some of it not so much, and if I’m honest, it’s been all a little too overwhelming and blogging hasn’t been top of the agenda. However, I’ll let you into a little secret; this outfit was never meant to make it onto the blog. With the weather being so lovely and sunny a few weeks ago, me and my family decided to have a little trip to the Quayside, without the pressure of shooting photographs. It’s one of my favourite places to visit, there’s something about the buzz around the Quayside and Baltic that I really love, and if you’re ever in the area, it’s a place I’d recommend paying a visit (plus the Baltic gift shop is packed with goodies!). And when I was standing admiring the view from the Baltic, I decided on a whim to quickly snap a few of this casual outfit of mine. Jeans, a tee, a duster coat, my favourite pointy flats and of course, my hat (I don’t wear it all the time, promise!) – because sometimes simple outfits are the best way to go.

Aside from the outfit, I think I’ve hit a little blogging slump. Don’t get me wrong, I have plenty of ideas lined up for the next few weeks or so, but that’s all they are, ideas. I thankfully have a handful of outfit posts ready to post, but I don’t know, I feel like my blog has become somewhat, meh. My photography is alright, my writing, okay, and that’s about it – it’s hit a little bit of a blip. So I’m currently working away on a little blogging revamp, something to help me fall back in love with blogging again – because boy do I miss that excitement you get when pressing publish and seeing everyone’s positive responses! There’ll be a few little design tweaks and some new content, whether that be beauty or lifestyle or something completely different. And I’m pretty excited, to look at things with a fresh perspective and see how things go – I like a challenge!

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So, I’d love to know, what are your favourite types of posts (from either other blogs or this one)?

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3 WAYS TO WEAR A DENIM SHIRT WITH NEW LOOK #3: DRESSY(ISH)

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Outfit Details: Denim Shirt – c/o New Look, Skirt – Primark, Sleeveless Blazer – Primark, Shoes – Primark, Hat – Primark, Sunglasses – Primark, Tights – c/o Uk Tights, Bag – Helen’s
(Quick apologies for the grainy photographs – I set the wrong camera settings, doh!)

Here with are with my final instalment of the styling challenge I was given by the lovely people over at New Look. I’ve had a really fun time thinking of different ways to dress up the denim shirt, and I’m happy with how they’ve turned out, especially this final one – the dressy version. Okay, so it’s not dressy-dressy, but it’s not too casual either, and it’s certainly very wearable during the day and at night. Pssst, if you haven’t already, make sure you check out my first and second outfits.

Onto the outfit itself, which, without me even realising, is pretty much all Primark (apart from the denim shirt of course, and the bag that I borrowed off Helen). What can I say? I just love Primark and I fully support that you can find some great things in there if you’re willing to root around. My latest find is this sleeveless blazer which caught my eye the other day on a quick visit. I’d been after a sleeveless duster or blazer for a little while, but didn’t want to pay too much – as I didn’t know whether it would suit me and my wardrobe. So when I spotted this Primark offering, I had to pick it up! I love what it adds to my style, and I’m sure it won’t be the final time you see it in my outfit posts. To add some print to this outfit, I decided on this palm print skirt which I bought last summer and got a surprising amount of wear from.

I’ll let you in on a little secret here, but in the majority of my outfit photographs that I’m going all bare-legged… I’m normally wearing a pair of skin coloured tights. I know, I know, it’s terrible right, but my legs are that pale that they tend to go over-exposed in photographs and cause a bit of a lighting nightmare (l o l)! And with that I’ve had the dilemma of wanting to wear open-toed sandals and not being able to, until that is, I was contacted by UK Tights whether I’d like to try a few of their toeless tights. I think it’s pretty safe to say that they are da bomb, such a handy thing to have and you can’t even tell I’m wearing them, which gets a thumbs up in my books. Finally, as this outfit is a little dressier than the others, I thought it were a perfect time to sport a red lip (Topshop Velvet Lips, if you’re wondering) and match it with this dreamy Mulberry bag.
Who says you can’t match your lip colour and bag? I’m all for it!

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Which of the three outfits have been your favourite? I’d love to know!

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INJECTING 1970S COLOURS INTO YOUR WARDROBE

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I was recently, rather excitedly, asked if I’d like to do a guest blog post for Intu Metrocentre, a large shopping centre that’s just down the road from where I live. I practically grew up there, so to be asked to work with them was lovely and a real achievement for myself; never did I imagine my blog getting me working with such places. There’ll be a guest post each week from a different fashion blogger, so it’s well worth a read!
Anyways, they’re currently running Fashion Month with a strong focus on colour, so I thought it would be fun to write an article all about how to inject some 70s inspired colours into your wardrobe.
If there’s one era that has taken over the high-street this season, then it’s definitely the 70s. A era based very much on fabrics, ranging from denim to suede, it makes it the perfect blank canvas to inject some colour into your wardrobe. If you’re a little scared to embrace the flared jeans and bell-sleeves, then fear not – it’s easy to give a little nod to the seventies by changing up your colour palette.
Whilst every spring/summer the high-street fills with florals and nautical inspired pieces, this year things are a little different and there’s a focus on a primary colour palette. Red, blue and yellow are the big colours for this season, but they’re not as difficult to wear as they sound. Go back to the basics, it could be as simple as pairing a varsity inspired t-shirt with contrasting trim with a denim jacket, or a coloured roll-neck jumper with a suede skirt. Think simple shapes mixed with 70s fabrics and colours and you’re good to go – this era is all about that relaxed vibe that suits everyone. Trust me, flares are possibly the most flattering jean cut there is!
And if you’re still feeling a little hesitant to inject some 70s into your wardrobe this season, then you can easily do so just by carefully picking your accessories. Shoes-wise, there is large amount of platforms in the stores right now, as to be expected. They may look like a health hazard on the shelves, but they’re surprisingly comfortable to spend all day in and perfect to wear with jeans. And if you’re more of a flats kind of girl, coloured suede is the way to go – Zara have the most amazing pair of light blue suede boots in store at the moment.
Now I may be biased, but hats are also a great way of adding that colour into your wardrobe – and the stores are filled with fedoras, in Miss Selfridge and Topshop especially. Easy to pair with a casual outfit, they’ll add that laid-back look into your wardrobe whilst also providing a must-have piece on those bad hair days, which can never be a bad thing, right?!
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What are your favourite colours to wear?
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DENIM AND LEATHER

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Outfit Details: Dress – Miss Selfridge, Boots – Next, Duster Coat – H&M, Jacket – Dorothy Perkins, Bag – Primark, Sunglasses – Primark, Hat – Primark

(Photographs by The Lovecats Inc)
Now there’s no denying that Alexa Chung is my queen, my ultimate style icon; even if our body shapes couldn’t be any different. So of course, her latest collaboration with AG Jeans had me at hello, a denim range which was completely up my street… but unfortunately completely out of my budget. With denim being a forefront fabric in my wardrobe this season, the hunt was on to find the person denim dress and denim skirt. I’m yet to get my hands on a skirt of my dreams yet, however, when I saw this Miss Selfridge dress hitting up the blogosphere, I knew it just had to be mine. Sold out online, it only made me want it more, and lo and behold, I finally tracked one down and practically ran to the cash desk. Last one left, and in my size. Fate.

I think I was a little ambitious when shooting these outfits, thinking a duster coat would suffice, but a few minutes into it I soon realised I was wrong (and very very cold) so decided to layer under a leather jacket, because everyone carries around two coats, right?! I’d seen a few of my favourites layering up coats, and I was always a little hesitant, but I needn’t be – I absolutely love how it looks! As the outfit was very focussed on mixing fabrics rather than colour, I couldn’t resist giving these leopard print boots an outing that wasn’t involving them hiding under jeans. I definitely see these being my all-time favourite boot this year, you know you’re on a winner when you’re excited to wear them as much as you can (that is, when it’s not raining). They’re already taking pride of place in my bedroom!

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Who are your style icons? I’d love to find out!

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MY FAVOURITE BLOG READS

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It’s no secret that I read a lot of blogs, and having felt at a bit of a blogging loss recently, have spent days scrolling through Bloglovin’ and reading through many of my favourites. There’s a huge amount of blogs which I follow, all which I love, but there’s those blogs that I never get bored of reading time and time again. I’m pretty sure I’ll have missed some from here (chances are I’ll keep editing it as time goes on) but these are the ones that sprung to mind. I like to read a mix of lifestyle, fashion and beauty posts – with amazing photographing, excellent writing skills and a sense of personality being what draws me into a blog.

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 A Beautiful Mess, Alices Wonder Emporium, A Little Boat Sailing, A Little Opulent, amyalaska // Beauty Full Homes, Beauty Sauce, Bloomin’ Rouge,
Bonjour Luce // CharissaRae // Daisy Butter, D is for Dangerous // Essie Button //
From Roses // Georgia Luisa Meramo, Gh0stParties, Girl With Makeup,
The Goodowl // Hannah Louise Fashion, Hello October, Helloo Monica // iamcharlottemartin,
I Covet Thee, It’s Cohen, // Jazzabelle’s Diary, Jenny Purr // Kerralina // Ladylike Len, Lady Liquor, Like Neon Love,
The Little Magpie, Little Winter, Llymlrs, The Lovecats Inc, Love Cloth, Lydia Rose // Media Marmalade, Milk Bubble Tea,
More Than Adored // No. 21, Nouvelle Daily // Pages By Megan, Parisian To Be, PINKPOT,
The Private Life of a Girl // Rush & Teal // Salt and Chic, Sarah Nunn // Talking About M, Temporary:Secretary, That Grace Girl, Thumbelina Lillie, Thunderl0ve //
 Vivianna Does Makeup // What Olivia Did, WishWishWish //
Zoe London, Zoe Newlove //
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What are your favourite reads? (Or feel free to leave me your links & I’ll check them out!)\
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MY STYLE RESOLUTIONS

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1. Inject more colour into my outfits – After having a little wardrobe sort-out (more on this in an upcoming post) one thing that really stood out to me was the lack of colour in my wardrobe. I stick to the colours I know, not really trying anything new – and I’d really like to step out of my comfort zone and go for colours I wouldn’t normally.
2. Ditch the black tights a lot sooner – Even throughout the summer, chances are I’ll be wearing my black tights. I’m not overly confident with my legs, but having spent a little while looking through my old outfit photographs, it’s the ones I’m bare-legged that I love that little bit more. I may not have legs for days (damn you, a certain Miss Chung) but you know what? They’re not that bad.
3. Comfort isn’t always the way to go – I’m definitely a person of comfort, rarely doing things and that I don’t feel comfortable in. And the same goes for clothing/shoes, I stay with what I know, whether that be styles that I know suit me or ones I feel fit me more (anyone else buy skirts a size bigger purely for food room?). But with that, I can feel like my wardrobe can become repetitive and dull very quickly, and I’m always wanting to start over. Style is something that should be played with since it’s a method self-expression, and well, I really need to start going for things that look better some days; those tighter jeans, those shoes that need more breaking in but makes my legs look a lot longer. If you feel better about yourself, that’s what it’s important – no pain, no gain right?
4. Buy the basics – Despite saying I rarely own any colourful pieces of clothing in my wardrobe, I sure do own many patterned items. And this is all well and good.. if I had bought clothes plain enough to wear with them. I’m one of those shoppers who buys things that look good on the hanger, so I often glance past what most people call style staples. I really need to invest in some basics I can wear time and time again!
5. Trousers are your friends – Being vertically challenged, I’ve always put jeans and trousers as a massive no-go for me, mainly down to inconvenience. And the amount of skirts I own really outweighs anything else. But 2015 is the year I’m going to make more of an effort in trying out trousers and stop being such a lazy shopper (anyone else dislikegoing into changing rooms?!). A lot of the images I pin on Pinterest are of people wearing trousers, and if they can wear them, why can’t I?! Who really cares if they’re rolled up a few times (*cough* a lotta times *cough*)?
6. Where what I want to wear, not just what I feel like I should – I think as a fashion blogger, it’s incredibly easy to fall into that trap of wearing what the blogosphere are loving at the time. Most of the times, they may fit into your personal style and you’ll love it, but sometimes it just doesn’t work. And you know what, that’s perfectly fine. I need to learn to stick to my guns and concentrate on developing my own personal style much more this year. There’s always bloggers I read and think to myself oh how I’d love a wardrobe like theirs (I think we all do it), and truth is, there’s not a single thing stopping me.
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What are your style resolutions for this year? Let me know!
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BERET

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Outfit Details: Coat – Topshop, Skirt – Topshop, Top – Primark, Hat – Primark, Shoes – Topshop

Ditching my typical fedora or bowler hat go-tos, I recently re-discovered this beret in the bottom of a drawer and couldn’t resist wearing it out. It was always a favourite of mine a few years back, and wearing it the other day reminded me why. Perfect for those days where it’s a little too blustery for other hats, I feel like it adds a nice twist to an otherwise boring outfit. Plus it makes me feel very Parisian chic and if it has any connection to a city I love swooning over pictures of (but still haven’t visited yet – boooo!) then I’m all for it!
A month or so back I referred to this leopard Topshop skirt in one of my posts, talking about how my queen, a certain Miss Chung, had been spotted wearing it over London Fashion Week and it had quickly vanished from the rails before I had a chance to pick up one. Slightly devastated, I spent weeks refreshing the Topshop website and by some miracle, my prayers were answered and a random one appeared in stock in my size – fate, right? A complete impulse purchase and one I do not regret at all, it’s become of my favourite pieces in my wardrobe. Although it’s incredibly short (and I’m only a little over 5″) it’s nothing some thick black tights can’t really solve. These boots are a very recent purchase of mine, as they reminded me of a pair of Vagabond boots I’d had my eyes on for a long time, but at a fraction of the price. A little (much-needed) height, with a suitable heel (perfect for us clumsy folk) and the bonus of them being super comfy to walk in? I am in love.
 
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What are your autumn style must-haves this season? Anything you’ve picked up recently and loving right now?
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THE OUTFITS THAT NEVER MADE THE CUT #1

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1. Top – ASOS, Shorts – Primark, Shoes – Topshop, Bag – Primark
2. Coat – H&M, Dress – MANGO, Bag – Zara
3. Shirt – Topshop, Culottes – Urban Outfitters, Jacket – Dorothy Perkins, Hat – Primark
4. Jacket – Topshop, Top – Topshop, Jeans – Topshop, Shoes – Primark
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Shooting outfit photographs is quite a big part of my day-to-day life, and whilst you’ll have seen many of my favourites, not all reach my blog. Maybe because I’m not that fond of the outfits or because the photographs haven’t turned out very good, it varies. However I thought I’d introduce a new feature to my blog, where every so often I’ll put together a few photographs from here and there of outfit snippets that never made it into a full post.

The majority of these were taken over the summer (apart from the third one – the leaves sort of give it away) and looking back, my style has changed a whole lot. The last outfit for instance? Those jeans could’ve done with being rolled up and that jacket is a little toooversized. And the third photograph? Girl, you’re gonna have to find a better way to wear those culottes. You definitely ain’t killin’ it.

I think it’s nice to reflect back to old posts as well as those that didn’t make it onto the blog. Slightly cringe-worthy at times (and a whole lot of ‘what on earth was I thinking?!’) it’s always a nice reminder of how my photography has improved and general sense of personal style has evolved massively. While I’m certainly not cool enough to pull off the trainers vibe (as much as I’d like to), I’m perfectly happy with my array of hats, 60s-inspired shapes and the odd nod to 70s fashion.

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TURTLE NECK

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(Outfit Details: Top – Primark, Skirt – ℅ Missguided, Shoes – Topshop, Bag – Primark, Hat – Primark)
Another 60s inspired outfit of mine, can you tell that I’m seriously loving how it’s currently on trend at the minute? All of my favourite high-street stores are filled with 60s-esque pieces and I’ve been in my element – much to my bank account’s distress, but these things just need to happen sometimes.

Taking full advantage of the last few summer days (well, it was sunny at least) I decided to wear a cropped long-sleeve turtle neck I bought in Primark’s sale last year. It was one of those didn’t-realise-it-was-that-cropped-until-I-tried-it-on purchase’s and I’ve always felt quite reluctant to wear it. However, upon spotting this A-Line skirt, I knew it would be the perfect fit. High-waisted enough to make this top not-so-scary to wear, I love this combo and how flattering it actually is, win win! Autumn/Winter always screams dark coloured clothing, but after receiving this wool skirt I’m definitely coming to realise that pastels in the winter need to happen. I chose to wear my black fedora from Primark, which hasn’t really seen the light of day in a while, despite how much I love wearing it. And following on with Primark, this bag which I picked up a number of weeks ago has rarely left my arm since. I love integrating leopard print into my outfits (just as I typed this, I rushed onto the Topshop site in the hopes that leopard print skirt would be back in stock… and it was, only one in my size – fate!) and it’s structured shape is wonderful.

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