Monday, 28 January 2013

Essential Guide: The Fabulous Girl's Guide to Decorum - FRIENDSHIP

Continuing on with "The Fabulous Girl's Guide to Decorum" by Kim Izzo and Ceri Marsh, here we look at Friendship.

We all love our girlfriends, and the love and support we get from them, here are some fun and essential tips, from Kim and Ceri!  With extra comments made by me ;) !

Buy her


"Friends are vital to the happiness of the Fabulous Girl.  Friends of all ages, sexes and locales will enrich an FG's life by giving her expert opinions on wardrobe, love life, career, health and all that fulfils her. Forget diamonds: society is a girl's best friend."

Girl Time

"How much time should be reserved for girl time?  If you are a busy career woman and are in a relationship, then it may be realistic for you to see friends only once or twice a week.  Those occasions may be lunch dates or cocktails in the 5-7pm range so that you can go home for quiet time.  And if you are burning the candle at both ends, you should not feel obliged to see the same friend every week. Leaving phone messages or e-mail to check on a friend will keep you connected when you can't get together."

Twitter or Facebook are really good ways to keep in touch, especially if the location is far between you and a girlfriend.

More Money

"Bound as it is to success and worth, money can be a tricky issue for friends to navigate.  Whether one pal suddenly hits the jackpot or was simply born with a silver spoon in her mouth, a discrepancy in income can be awkward.

As the poor cousin in the equation, you must not assume that your wealthier friend wants to make up the difference when you go out together.  Always look after your half of the bill even if she's got more than to cover the whole thing.  You'll both feel more like equal partners in your friendship by handling shares expenses this way."

That said, it's always nice to treat a friend, especially if things have not been going so great - the 'thank you' you'll get, will be worth more than the value you spent!

Friendship is a long section in the book, and so it should be!  It's an important part of everyone's life - the section ends with this fabulous suggestion for a day with you best friend - a girl can never tire of shopping, not when there is lunch involved too!

The Fabulous Girl's Perfect Day Shopping with her Best FG

Rise after an extra-long beauty rest.  A light energy-boosting breakfast.
Wardrobe: White or flesh -tone thong, button-up shirt, skirt and flat shoes. (they've missed out the bra?!)
Grooming: Shower, full hair and make-up.
Fabulous Girl Tip: A watch is your only accessory.

Meet best friend at the nicest shopping district in town.  Try on lot of clothes whether or not you intend or can afford to buy anything.
Fabulous Girl Tip: Try on the clothes pre-lunch to ensure a flat stomach.

Ladies Who Lunch: Tablecloths and waiter service.
Table Talk: Gossip, fashion, men, goals.
Fabulous Girl Tip: No fast food.

Apres-lunch: Giving the 'maybes' a second look.
Manicures, pedicures, flicking through the magazines, shoe shopping.
Fabulous Girl Tip: Swollen feet guarantee fit.

Tea, read, nap.

Private fashion show.
Remove tags and put away new threads.
Fabulous Girl Tip: Revel in your good taste."

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Flower Power

If your keen to stay on trend, then one you may like to adopt is flowers - all over the runway for spring/summer 2013. 

Flowery patterns and tea dresses make a great combination, and I'm loving this look from Bottega Veneta, my option would be the darker one of the two, if only I had the budget!

Image taken on iPhone from Vogue Feb 2013 edition

I couldn't find this dress in their "Ready to Wear" collection on their site, but did find this flowery alternative for a mere  £2,350!!  Personally I'm not so keen on this one.

Bottega Veneta

Having a look to see what's more in line with everyday budget, here are some options you could consider:

With this skater skirt, you will be nailing two trends in one look!
Oasis - Floral skater dress


Elegant style - a fabulous dress to wear to a event
Coast - Hayworth Duchess Satin

Coast at House of Fraser

I'm loving this one from Ted Baker (via ASOS)
Digital Floral Dress - £129

Ted Baker - ASOS

And if your quick, I found this bargain gorgeous tea dress from Yumi!
Was £45, now £20


Sunday, 20 January 2013

Spring Nails - Do you dare to go bare?

This Spring there are two main trends for nails; 'The brighter the better" and "The nude look".  For this post, I'm taking a look at nude, as it's not a look I would normally go for.

According to Vogue Beauty, the idea is to look at your skin tone and match as close as you can, suggesting to bespoke-blend a couple of colours to get the right colour-match.  Judging by the imagery used it implied there would be a lot of choice, I found little choice of 'nude" in Boots today - there was a lot of neutrals, but not many light enough to match my skin tone.

For nails I normally like colour, so for trying this trend I decided to opt for a cheaper brand, and selected 500 Caramel Cupcake from Rimmel London 60 Second range; it's darker than my skin tone but my other options were too pinky for me.  Expert manicurist Marian Newman, suggests to use a matt coat between applications to get that flawless finish, not having used this before I purchased Rimmel's Pro Matte Finish. It worked brilliantly, I may try this technique on some other colours that sometimes leave an uneven finish. That said, I've still opted for a high gloss coating for the last coat.

Marian also did a feature with Emerald Street, stating that "nude nails was the strongest trend she had seen in 15 years" and recommended to use "Quiet time" by MAC at £10 a bottle - if I take to this new look, I may just invest.

So do you dare to go bare??

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Sunday, 13 January 2013

Essential Guide: The Fabulous Girl's Guide to Decorum - SOCIETY

In this next edition of "The Fabulous Girl's Guide to Decorum" by Kim Izzo and Ceri Marsh, I'm looking at the subject Society.

Beyond the workplace there are many elements that still requires conquering with grace!  Being a good citizen is a challenge, here are a few extracts from this book that may help you on your way.

Buy here

Your People

"Although an FG's appearance - in fact, her whole life - may seem effortless, it's not quite so.  It takes a team of professionals to make life run smoothly.  As you get older, you need to take the task of developing you People quite seriously.  The best way to build your list of contacts is to consult with other FGs."

"The People you may need at one time or another are":

  • Hairdresser
  • Beautician
  • Masseuse
  • Cleaner
  • Dog walker and/or cat sitter
  • Florist
  • Shrink
  • Accountant
  • Doctor
  • Dentist
  • Lawyer
  • Caterer
  • Personal Trainer
  • Tailor
  • Cobbler
  • Mechanic
  • Dry-cleaner
  • Travel agent
  • Nanny

The Fabulous Girl's Aesthetic - Hair

"Hair should always been sleek and clean.  Get a haircut every three months. Length will be dictated by trends, you face shape and, most importantly, your mood.  Short hair feels liberating and looks exactly right on many faces.  But, longer hair can create a glamourous look that men, friends and colleagues will appreciate.  And without a doubt, long hair is better for sex."

"Hair is difficult, so don't be afraid to bring in the professionals.  If you've got a big day for which you wan to look polished, book an early morning blow-dry.  A gala night? Stop by the salon on your way to have your stylist put it up for you.  After all, a girl can't be good at everything."

Public Transportation

"Yes, it's true, the elderly, the disabled and pregnant women do need to sit down on tubes, buses and trains.  It's up to the FG to demonstrate to the public at large what good manners are and to offer her seat should such a person need it.  It will make you feel good too."


"A month before your journey, take time to learn a few words and phrases in the language of the country you're visiting.  A must in every language are the words for 'please', 'thank you', 'How of I get to...', and 'Do toy gave this in a size...' "

Movie Manners

"During a trip to the cinema, remember, that it is a public space.  So chew you snack quietly, and keep the crackling of the bag to a minimum.  There are so many commercials and trailers before the main feature these days that there is no excuse to be eating at all during the film."

"Never, ever talk during a movie.  Never, ever explain the plot to your date during the movie.  Never, ever translate it into another language during the movie.  Never, ever exclaim 'He's got the gun' or 'This is when she dies' during the movie."

If you missed out on the first post about this book, looking at etiquette in the workplace, click here to catch up.

If you have enjoyed reading this post and you would like to know more about the book, then simply click here.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Colours for Spring 2013

It's coming, we are nearly there - Spring 2013 is on it's way!

Be bold, and be bright!  Pantone have released their top 10 colours for women's fashion for Spring 2013.

Image by Plush Swimwear - Contents by Pantone

If you know your colour season, then I've broken down the colours for you.  Buy colours as close to the colour as you can and avoid multi-colour jewellery which may not have all your right colours:

Winter - Emerald, Monaco Blue
Summer - Grayed Jade, Dusk Blue
Autumn - Linen, Nectarine, Poppy Red
Spring - Linen, Lemon Zest, African, Violet, Tender Shoots

A fun way to update your look without spending too much, is to update your accessories. This season, colour is every where and you can really make a statement with jewellery; here are some fun colourful necklaces for Spring 2013

Chelsea Doll's - Rainbow Ribbon Woven Plate Necklace

Chelsea Doll

Accessorize - Rainbow Pendant


Selfridges have two fun necklaces from Tatty Devine collection;

Red Lobster Necklace

Green Parakeet Necklace

Saturday, 5 January 2013

Trend Watch - Tapered Trousers as seen on Victoria Beckham

Tapered trousers have been around for a few seasons now, but I've not seen too many people adopt the look as part of their workwear attire.

At the recent Viva Forever launch, a new musical West End show written by Jennifer Saunders that features most of the Spice Girl songs, Victoria Beckham wore tapered trousers.  Now for this type of evening out, I'm a little surprised she wasn't a little more dressed up, that said, her look inspired me to go and try some on!!

Image from

If you are loving this look, here are a few pointers to bear in mind to get the look just right:

  • The idea of this style is that you show a little ankle, the length you are looking for is to get to around your ankle bone, as when you sit down they will rise slightly.
  • Before selecting your shoes think about the hosiery that you might wear; the best look is to wear nothing however it's a little cold for that just now, so opt for nude but if you really have the need to wear black then perhaps invest in a pattern style that breaks up the heavy block denier.  If you do opt for the latter then ideally stick to flat shoes!
  • Now for the fun part - there are lots of different shoes you can consider for you look, mid-high court shoes.  You could consider brogues or patent flat shoes - or even opt for winter styles of sandals or wedges.  But I personally would avoid boots, especially any boot that goes above the ankle!
  • If you wish to avoid increasing the width of your hips, then don't opt for a style with pockets.

I haven't yet worn mine, but I know they are going to look great for the office, I will be wearing mine with black patent mid-high pointy shoes.

I've checked out a few for you to consider:

Was £110, now £44 - Limited Stock left!

French Connection

Was £95, now £76

Religion - House of Fraser


Limited Collection at M&S

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Essential Guide: The Fabulous Girl's Guide to Decorum

I love books about etiquette - and this week I found a book I bought about 10 years ago called "The Fabulous Girl's Guide to Decorum"  by Kim Izzo and Ceri Marsh.

You must have heard of Holly Golightly? Audrey Hepburn's character from Breakfast at Tiffany's - well this book features centres it's "guide" around this fabulous character and the tips around how to throw the perfect dinner party, how to be stylish, advice on workplace etiquette - it's a fun and modern advice on good manners.

So over the next few weeks, I thought I would provide highlights from this book around the various subjects, to pass on some of Kim's and Ceri's great work.


You are what you wear!

"One of the keys to the Fabulous Girl's (FG) success is her sense of style.  Of course she is intellectually or financially brilliant - or both - but what we're talking about here is what makes the FG succeed beyond other smart women.  She knows how to dress, and while she may not be rich (yet), the FG simply loves clothes."

"An FG knows that great style commands respect from employers and colleagues: it reads as self-respect.  Employers are impressed when a staff member makes an effort with her appearance, as it demonstrates that she cares about the work she does and that she was to be a good representative of her company."

"The way you dress can definitely influence your success at work.  When your boss is trying to decide between you and the smart but sloppy woman next to you for that management promotion, guess who gets the job?  Dress for the job you wish was yours"

Telephone Hovering

"These are those, often in authority, who will assume that whatever it is they are doing is far more important that what you are discussion on the the telephone.  These people will stand over you and eavesdrop, smiling all the while, pretending to be cool with your being on the phone when in fact they are not.  They are assuming (often rightly) that it's a personal call and that this means they have a right to hover.  They do not.  You may have to put your friend on hold ad ash the hoverer to leave, or turn ou back to the hoverer and hope he or she takes the hint.  If you have an urgent message you need to get to someone who is on the phone, do not hover: write it down on a Post-it note and stick it in front of them. Then go back to your own space.  The person will come to talk to you - after the phone call."

Don't hate me because I'm young

"Many young girls are taught that older women broke through all sorts of barriers to make life better for the next generation.  While this may be true, don't expect a lot of help out in the real world, honey.  Older women had to do much clawing to get to where they are; they had to ignore their feelings of guilt and 'niceness' to be successes.  So when the FG enters the workplace and expects mentoring, it may be more than her elders can take and it's possible that you will get the cold shoulder.  They may see you as a threat or be irritated by hoe much easier your lot is as a young woman today.  You may have to work very hard to win these ladies' trust."

Oops, I'm now your boss!

"Even though you really wanted the position, it can be slightly traumatic to become the manager for the first time.  If you've always been part of a team, it's difficult to suddenly be captain.  But if you're going to take the job, then you must behave like a boss.  Think about the great - and the terrible (!!) - managers you've had in the past and about their style of governing.  The best leaders are clear about what they want and expect from staff.  Let people know whey you need them to do and don't avoid letting them know when they aren't doing their jobs correctly."

"Being witty and stylish at work often means that the FG becomes chummy with colleagues.  This his natural and advantageous, but when you get that promotion and become the boss, feelings and expectations alter drastically.  To smooth this change over, you will need to add extra honey to your already stellar vocabulary.  When assigning tasks to your former equals, ask them gently: 'Would you mind terribly getting that report in tomorrow?'"

"Not making an acute change in your behaviour will reassure colleagues that you're the same old, clever you, but now you just need to get them to do stiff.  They'll do it because you are you."

Well, I hope you enjoyed those few extracts, next time I will be looking through the subject of  SOCIETY

If you have enjoyed reading this post and you would like to know more about the book, then simply click here.