Monday, 26 September 2016

Autumn Trend: The Choker

This is one trend you can easy get on board with and it's not going to break the bank. And if you get it wrong, pass it on to a girlfriend and find another one that may suit you better. The classic is the simple black velvet band - you can get these super thin or super wide. Perfect for evening wear but looks just as great daytime with a denim shirt.  

There are lots of styles to chose from and most high street stores from Topshop, H&M, River Island to Accessorize are selling them from as little as £6.  Here are a few hints and tips to help you out:

  • Do consider the neckline of your top in relation to where you wear the choker - you need to give it some space - try a v-neck or scoop neck tee 
  • Instant glam for a night out - opt for simple black or metallic like silver or gold
  • If you do opt for black velvet - you hitting two trends this season!
  • Try a choker that's been accessorised with either extended beads, a second necklace or if they are super thin wear more than one at once
  • Don't wear them too tight, not only for comfort but there is nothing glam about a red neckline!
  • Adopt the more dainty look for daytime super chic fun.

Fans of the Real Housewives of Cheshire will know model Misse Beqiri, and she sports the choker trend a lot, check out her instagram page for inspiration on how to wear this trend. 

MISSÉ BEQIRI (via Instagram)


The one I wore in the picture above is from Topshop, a velvet black choker for £6


I've also opted for a thin brown cord choker with a gold heart - I've yet to wear it as I only got it this Sunday in London.  It's going to be a great to wear daytime with a tee and jeans.



Friday, 23 September 2016

Advanced Style - What do you see?

To grow old gracefully - that's what we are told.

In a world full of cosmetic surgery, botox in your local beauticians, social media and magazines all putting the pressure on being YOUNG - should we not embrace, admire and aspire to be like the fabulous ladies from Advance Style? A blog created by Ari Seth Cohen in 2008, his project devoted “to capturing the sartorial savvy of the senior set.”

Are there rules on dressing once you hit 80 years?  Should we not get to a stage in our lives where we think 'F%&K it!!" It seems to me that we are told throughout our lives what we should wear; we are told by our mother as a child, we are told by our friends when we hit teens; we are told by our boss when we start work and running alongside that we are told by magazines, celebrities and the list goes on and on. Should we always follow what everyone else is doing - where is individuality?

Now the film below caused a bit of a stir on a Facebook group I belong to - is this style or are they clowns?  What do you see?

If you received this by email, you'll need to click here to watch the film

What I love about this film is how they all love to dress up each day, how they find it fun.  How they hate to follow or copy what other people wear.  They feel they get treated better by society because they make an effort to look good.  And because they feel good, they are happy.  I love their contentness and that's surely got to be a good thing.

I know I don't want my life to get to a stage where I find beige and soft comfy shoes fabulous - please put me down if I ever say they are (this will be a sign that I have gone mad).  I'm for glamour, for fun and to stay engaged with fashion, despite my age.

I get a lot of my inspiration from Instagram, and as a huge fan on the glamorous 'senior set' I follow these three fabulous women, who are all still working, still having fun with fashion and to me they are very happy ladies.

I know what I see.

Linda Rodin. @rodinoliolusso


A model from the sixties, Linda Rodin is prolific on Instagram giving lots of insight into behind the scenes of her fashion shoots. I love this blue sofa (I may just have to copy), and of course I find myself admiring Linda and her poodle Winks - feels a bit like me and Alfonso.  She's also a lover of jeans - ditto.

Iris Apfel @irisapfel

Iris is 95 years old and has recently launched a clothing line with Macy's.   I went to watch Iris' film last year with my mum, a slightly strange documentary but well worth watching - she is unique.  

Daphne Selfe @daphneselfe


Daphne has been professional modelling since 1949, and she is still modelling today at the age of 88 - it seems modelling can have longevity if you stay modern and current.

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

What I Wore: Romatic Lace

Following on from my anniversary post, this gives you a chance to see my new gorgeous black lace top from M&S.  It really was a last minute purchase - I went in to buy the slim-leg jacquard trousers I'm wearing below, and as I headed to the changing rooms, I spotted lace.

I loved the top instantly and loved the price too at £25.  It does come in more colours; white, dark green and a very pale pink.  As I wanted it for evening wear, unsurprisingly, I opted for black.


M&S - Per Una
Slim Leg Jacquard Trousers


M&S Collection
Lace Print Jersey Top


Saturday, 17 September 2016

My Wedding Anniversary

Tonight hubby and I will be off out to celebrate six years of marriage bliss, I cannot believe another year has gone by; but on the positive it's another year that brings us closer together with memories, ambitions and of course togetherness.

The theme for my outfit is based on romantic fabrics mixed in with lots and lots of treasures that relate to our marriage and our courting days.

You can never go wrong with lace; and there is nothing sexier than black lace that covers your arms in full, with a high neckline too this allows you to show off some skin and yet keeping some mystery.  My heels are black satin covered in lace too, which will match in just nicely.

My clutch bag is from old; I love it and it's gone on so many dates with me & hubby, and what I love about it most, is how you can fill it with 'stuff' and yet it will sit comfortably on my lap, I don't have to worry about it misplacing it.

The jewellery I will wear tonight most was worn on my wedding day - and whilst I have used them on other occasions; I seem to always opt for this on our special night.  I decided not to wear my brooch, I wore it last year and made it a statement on that outfit, that I thought I would leave it this time.

The LOVE keyring reminds me of my hen party; it was a Sex and The City theme in Central London and before the night got started we went to watch Sex and The City II and this keyring was given to Carrie. When I purchased the DVD as a memento of that occasion, this was the free gift. And I just LOVE it.

Chanel No.5 - do I need to say anything?!

And finally, my little pink duck.  Well even my niece Ellie knows to not touch this!  On my second date we took my grandmother, who was then 79 years old, out for the day looking for venues for her 80th (how she came to be on my second date is result of me double-booking and not wanting to cancel on either!) - Well he bought me this pink rubber duck. I saw it in a little tea room that was selling random things, and after we dropped my grandmother back at home, he presented it from hiding it in the car.  It's probably my most treasured item I own.

Happy Anniversary x

Friday, 9 September 2016

Back to work... laptop bags

The summer holidays are over and everyone this week seems to be heading back to work; I had forgotten about traffic queues and dull grey skies but both are back with a vengeance this week! Thankfully it's now Friday and we have the weekend.

With the thought of returning to work, I realised I had missed (just a little) my fabulous work bag, that I cannot live without!  

About a year ago my office role changed with me heading out into the field and that really impacted my wardrobe. Basically I needed to carry my entire office around with me. Twelve months on, I can now confidently say I could work anywhere in the world, with this bag and WIFI.

I started the new role with my black and very boring IT laptop bag that's issued out as standard, and after a couple of weeks, I just thought this is too dull for me!  

I wanted my laptop bag to look feminine, stylish and to mimic a handbag.  Sadly after a full day of hunting around the shops, specialised and department stores, they could only offer me unisex (a word I personally do not do!) and colours of either grey or black - no one seems to be catering for the business woman?  And sadly all shops referred me to their online stores; it seems we don't justify any floor space in shops!

Samsonite Integra Laptop Bag
No longer available on Samsonite online, but you can get it at Bags Direct, click here

Now I know some ladies simply use a big tote bag to get around this issue, but that doesn't support or keep safe the equipment from damage.  I also need lots of compartments and pockets to store other office time items that a desk is so handy for.  I need to set up my working environment in less than a few minutes and at the end of my meeting pack it all away again - so every item needs a home - I can't just throw it in.

I settled on the Samonite bag above from their Intregra range (which is no longer on their online store but I found it on Bags Direct).  The one above is black, however I opted for Espresso brown which I feel changes colour.  Some times it's a dark brown and some days it's more an olive green regardless it works so well with whatever I have chosen to wear.

It's important in a professional environment to look the part; people make decisions instantly on how you look, unfortunately. And so what you wear and how you come across in those first few minutes will make a lasting impression.  Think about what it is you want to get out of your day - and then ask the question, is how you look helping you achieve that?

Rightly or wrongly us ladies have to make that extra effort; for the promotion, the attention and the equal pay packet!  And maybe this journey has to start with how you carry your laptop?

Thursday, 1 September 2016

September Mania

I can't believe we are in the month of September - on the radio today they said it was the first day of Autumn, it doesn't feel it thankfully with this sunshine!

I sometimes forget that social media is global because you get use to your daily instagram and twitter friends, so it was really odd when Sara Donaldson, an Australian blogger posted this morning that it was the first day of Spring!! (I wish!)

Sara's post from Instagram @harperandharley

There is quite a bit going on in September, fashionistas.... and so I thought I would pull together a couple of things for you, so that you don't miss out!  

Victoria Beckham's make-up launch with Estee Lauder; it launches 13th of September and it's a limited edition range made up of a dozen or so products that includes, a highlighter, bronzer, eyeshadows, eye pencils, lipstick and apparently a lip gloss and pencil that VB simply cannot live without!!  Read more about it here.

Red Magazine do some great events, they are London based which I know doesn't suit everyone.  Coming up in September is their "Smart Women Week" which I've not seen before and it's four days (not a week!) of events which you kind of book for the half or full day - they include various workshops and talks based around health, food, business and so on - it's on from 21st to the 25th September. You can read and book tickets by clicking here.

St Albans Fashion Week - if your in the Herts, Beds and Bucks area of England this is an event you don't want to miss! Whilst it's not on until 24th-30th October, tickets will become available in September. I can highly recommend the Cathedral catwalk show - it's very exciting and features local boutiques, they also have lots of other fun stuff to get involved with leading up to the Thursday and Friday night - so keep an eye out for go live, by signing up here.