Saturday, 4 July 2015

The best Instagram accounts to follow

Instagram, for me, is undoubtedly my favourite place to hang out. I can sit scrolling for hours through pictures of perfect peonies, sunglasses placed 'just so' on an instagram-ready surface in the coolest Parisien cafe (much to the annoyance of my husband). But occasionally this is a good thing - I get so much inspiration for my blog, fashion news updates, travel ideas and styling tips here, And although favourite 'feeds' is something that is highly subjective,  I thought I'd share a few of my favourite people to follow (and for those of you who might think this is a 'lazy' post, trust me, it took me hours to compile this - I kept getting sucked into feeds of beautiful photos!).

1. Cup Of Couple

If there were someone instagram was invented for, it would be these guys. Every photo is immaculately styled, and they travel the world seeking the best coloured walls, coffee shops and cool places - I often can be seen writing down the cafes they recommend in Paris, Lisbon and Madrid.

2. Always Judging

Super cool LA based music lover, Courtney, always gets it right - in those kind of 'off-coloured shouldn't be right outfits'. And her flatlays are always on point.

3. Mija Mija

I mean, the dream. Beautiful, wanderlust photos from around the world. It helps that's she's drop dead gorgeous and looks great in just about anything.

4. Adenorah

As I know only too well, it's fun being a fashion Editor - travelling the world pretty much always in denim, she finds the best pieces on Asos and certainly knows how to do a cool breton.

5. Belle and Bunty

I've known of Belle and BuntyA for years, they're designers selling a great array of vintage style dresses and their Bridal range is fab. But their instagram is an even bigger hit with me. I love their colourful feed and those Soludos espadrilles?! Just bought myself a pair...

6. A Girl, A Style

I've followed Briony and her blog for a while, long before I started mine - her beautiful, sunny, rose-filled pictures are always gorgeous and considered. And now we're friends and going to Port Eliot Festival together this summer - which makes looking at her lovely photos even sweeter.

7. Oracle Fox Blog

To me, Amanda Shadforth, owns this minimal blogger style. Every photo is stylised, effortless and stunning.

8. Lucy Williams 02

Lucy of my favourite fashion blog, Fashion Me Now, has impeccable style, the best legs on Instagram and a wardrobe of amazing basics that always leaves you thinking 'why didn't I put that with that?'. She also travels to THE best places, so start taking notes, pronto.

9. Somewhere I Would Like To Live

An instagram feed dedicated purely of wanderlust and house envy - who'd've thought it would work? It runs along the same ethos as I Have This Thing With Floors - if you like cool decor, intriguing houses and lovely locations - this is your jam.

Hope this has been helpful in some way. Who are your favourite accounts?

Oh, and you can follow me on instagram here ;)

Thursday, 2 July 2015

10 under £20

Top: £14 in the sale, Asos. Skirt: £19.99, New Look. Sunglasses: £20, Toyshades. Sandals: Christian Louboutin (old). Bag: £55, The Jacksons
There is nothing I like more than lusting after something and being able to buy it there and then (it's fair to say I'm a pretty compulsive shopper). And there's something about that £20 pricetag that makes everything just more accessible - wear with a pair of expensive sandals and voila, you look good to go and far more expensive than the outfit you're wearing.

This New Look skirt is the perfect summer staple and I've been wearing it non-stop. And you'll probably recognise this Asos top from previous instagram posts - it is quite sheer so I would recommend a nude bandeau bra underneath (I get mine from Marks & Spencer but American Apparel do some too) - to avoid the 'shelf' look from strapless bras and elasticated necklines! 

Now, about the Louboutin sandals....I bought these in the Matches Sale when I worked there over 9 years ago - they cost around £180 even then but every summer they work with every piece in my wardrobe and look effortless. Not everything I bought back then stood the test of time, trust me, so I outdid myself with these! 

So this brings me to the £20 edit - 10 great items that will help 'pep' up your summer wardrobe without eating into your holiday savings...because we all need a cheap thrill now and then.

1. Jersey off shoulder top, £14, Topshop

2. Espadrilles, £14.99, H&M

3. 'Polo' sunglasses, £20, Toyshades

4. Fedora, £18, River Island

5. Raw hem denim shorts, £19.99, H&M

6. Jewelled sandals, £17.50 in the sale (and lots of sizes left!), Accessorize

7. Tie-side bikini bottoms, £10, Next

8. Bikini top, £9.99, H&M

9. Denim A-Line skirt, £19.99, New Look

10. Cotton chinos, £14.99, H&M

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

How To Wear Make-up With Glasses

Shirt: H&M (in store now). Leather skirt: £55, Asos. Bag: £236 Manu Atelier. Shoes: £62, Topshop (back in stock). Glasses: Burberry. Watch: Shore Projects. Photographs: Ella Sadika

To be perfectly honest, I'm not one of those girls who is really bothered about how they look to other people. And I have had for years 'you look so much better without your glasses' or 'you can really see your eyes when your glasses are off' - even strangers on instagram! 

But hey, sometimes it would be nice to be told 'you look beautiful with your glasses'...! This is something I've been discussing with Bobbi Brown for a while, and is something they really believe in - so I thought I'd see if they could work miracles.

Bobbi Brown store, Covent Garden

Amalie in Covent Garden is a genius, if you ever get a makeover there, go see her - she is honest but doesn't ever make you have anything you wouldn't want or feel comfortable with. She got straight down to business and looked at how I wore my make-up and just tweaked a few things, which made such a difference - here's what I learnt:

  • Brows are important - do them first - as it helps frame the face.
  • Focus on where the eyes are stationed. If your frames are big underneath (like mine) - try a smokey eye underneath to fill the space, rather than fill out on top. 

Trying 'Cobalt Ink' eyeliner instead of black to bring out my green eyes.

  • Make sure you use a shadow stick/base so that your eyeliner holds without smearing/smudging.
  • By smudging your eyeliner underneath, this makes your make-up look less stark and actually makes them more impactful. 
  • Always fill in between the roots of the lashes under your top lid - "tightlining" (no, I had never heard of this either). This way there is no skin gap so your eyes really pop. You can do this with your regular eyeliner (Amalie used a small brush for this).

  • Always use more 'corrector' than concealer. You should be using a 70/30 ratio. Corrector actually takes away the darkness and then concealer brings the colour back to your skin tone.

  • If you're, like me, prone to smudging mascara, used a non smudge version, to let your skin and lashes breathe without bleeding.

  • If doing a heavier eye, go easy on the blusher. In the past I've always used pink blush, but Amalie introduced me to a much more subtle 'pastel peach' version instead. I'm hooked.

Crystal Pink Sheer Lip Colour. Rose-gold necklace: £85, Daisy London

Shirt: H&M (in store now). Leather skirt: £55, Asos. Bag: £236 Manu Atelier. Watch: Shore Projects

So, there we go. I felt really 'done' walking around Covent Garden but I felt good. And when getting ready for a wedding this weekend? The first thing I did was tightline and correct under my eyes. Times, they are a-changing.

Monday, 29 June 2015

Jade Jagger's Ibiza

Last year, I visited the White Isle for the first time. And now I've got the I'm taking my husband next month - he has no idea what to expect. We're going to attempt to do laid-back, chic (affordable?!) Ibiza, not the San Antonio 'Kevin and Perry' verson...the way I always describe my dream trip to friends is 'like Jade Jagger's Ibiza'. 

So when I was offered to interview Jade herself (another career highlight and possibly the most nerve-wrecking things I've done - although it was fine, and she was lovely), I knew exactly what I wanted to ask her... 

Jade Jagger in one of her kaftans, designed exclusively for Thomson Sensatori Resorts

In 3 words, what does Ibiza mean to you?
Family, sunshine, childhood.

What is your favourite Spanish dish?
Octopus Gallegas, freshly caught.

What could you not live without in your hand luggage?
I always carry a shawl or a blanket, it's so versatile as a dress or a cover-up for travelling.

Ibiza Town

If you could recommend 5 must-see places in Ibiza (to see, do, eat), what would they be?

1. Aguas Blancas - for the seaside there.

2. Cafe Macau - for its laid-back ambience.

3. Dalt Villa  - in the old town, it's steeped in history, with local leather and dress shops.

4. Las Dos Lunas - on the road to Amnesia, old restaurant with great Italian food.

5. Valley of Santa Ines - Outside of the summer, take a long walk through here, when the almond blossom is out.

I've definitely earmarked these places for our trip late July - stay tuned for more 'Ibiza Insiders' coming soon.

And if you subscribe to my blog, you can now get my shiny new newsletter where I will be offering monthly discounts, special offers and exclusive content - this month you can win one of Jade Jagger's kaftans designed for the Thomson Sensatori Resort, Ibiza - good luck!

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Summer Essential: The Peasant Top

Top: Next (old). Trousers: £14.99 H&M (available in navy here).  Shoes: £62, Topshop. Bag: £55, The Jacksons
The Pre-Fall collections are already landing in stores but you haven't even gotten your S/S act together yet? Fear not,  you can buy one single item that's easy to wear, super affordable and likely to bring most items Summer ready. The peasant top - great with jean, chinos, shorts, a-line skirt - the list goes on.
Top, £69, Monsoon

I bought this top last summer from Next, around the time that I'd say I 'rediscovered' Next - and it was certainly my best buy. It looks so much more expensive than High Street.

Peasant top, £45, Next
Peasant top, £18 in the sale, Warehouse

These bags are made in collaboration with craftswomen from Bangladesh. I am obsessed. Bag: £55, The Jacksons

Jute bag, £55, The Jacksons

Thursday, 25 June 2015

More Ways To Sell Your Old Clothes (yes, more!)

At my last carboot sale, Battersea
Actually, I heard someone refer to this as "Managing Your Wardrobe", which I think has a far better ring to it. I've also been introduced to Marie Kondo's 'The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying' (thank you, Susie So So Blog) which I am now currently reading - teaching you to banish clutter forever and live a superior, clutter-free life (we'll see how it goes).

After the success of my last post on reselling clothes (which, coincidentally, led me to speak on BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour on the subject - a career highlight), I have since discovered a wealth of other websites (some new, some not) that I thought I'd share. Websites such as these are the reason I can afford most of my wardrobe (and holidays), so thank you internet! 


Not only is this a haven for designer second-hand finds (Chanel quilted bag, anyone?), this website buys your designer goods from you, and if approved, transfers cash to your bank account within 48 hours of agreement on price. It sure beats waiting around for the item to sell on ebay. 

2. Clotho London

I love the sustainable idea of this store. They collect the clothing from you if you live in London (and offer bags with postage already paid for those that don't) and in return, you get credit to spend in the shop. Eco-shopping = guilt-free shopping in my opinion.

3. Set up an Instagram Selling Account

...a la Laura Fantacci in her #WITRefurbSale - in a bid to clear out her house with her refurbishment, she listed loads of old clothes on a separate instagram account over a couple of weeks and people emailed when they wanted to buy. Simple!


The sellers here know their stuff. Items are on the website for 30 days, after which they are eBayed (the sellers have been ebaying since 2002 and are one of the Top Sellers), so your product is sold swiftly and your are paid quickly. They can organise cleaning and repairs, and can collect if you have a large amount of items. They charge 50% of selling price, but this includes all fees etc.

5. Jumble Trail

This is a genius website set up to help communities set up stalls and sales etc via their local community. A 'champion' decides to set up a stall, gets their community involved and this site helps promote it and help with google rankings and through social media to raise awareness. People hear about it through word of mouth, and can sign up with a stall or just come along to join. You can also search your nearest Jumble trail on the site...

6. Take your clothes to H&M

It's not exactly top dollar, but for every bag of unwanted clothes you drop to H&M, they'll give you a £5 voucher when you spend over £30. Not bad for when you just need to get rid of stuff.

So think of it as not only decluttering and making money, you're helping the environment and upcycling, too. Well done you.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Festival Dressing

Top: £12 in the sale, New Look. Dress: MiH Jeans (sold out but buy similar from Asos here). Bag: £110, Hunter Boots. Sunglasses: Asos (sold out but buy similar here). Suede boots: £75, Office. 'Falmouth' Watch with mesh strap: Shore Projects 
Festival season is upon us, I'm beyond sleeping in tents and drinking warm cider at 7am, but that doesn't mean I don't want to join in on the Festival dressing spirit. Luckily for The Strokes last week, the weather held out but as us brits know this isn't always the case, so I've put together a few ideas for the best case scenario vs the worst case scenario. Here's hoping you get the first kind!

The dream scenario: blistering sunshine.

Work a palette of denim, tobacco with a hint of mustard for a fresh, 'Chloe girl' look. The Warehouse bag looks so much more expensive than its £35 pricetag!

1. Cream western cape, £28, Warehouse

2. Straw fedora, £9.99, New Look

3. Mirrored tortoiseshell sunglasses, £40, Le Specs at Net A Porter

4. V-neck peasant blouse, £24.99, H&M

5. Denim A-Line skirt, £19.99, New Look

6. Suede crossbody bag, £35, Warehouse

7. Gold-plated tassel earrings, £12, Accessorize

8. Brown lace-up sandals, £26, Topshop

9. White denim shorts, £19.99, H&M

The not ideal scenario: heavy rain and a lot of mud (but you'll have a great time anyway). Invest in a printed bomber to bring your breton and jeans look festival-ready.

1. Breton top, £14.90, Uniqlo

2. Parka, £140, J Crew

3. Leather bucket bag, £236, Manu Atelier at Boticca

4. Cotton print bomber jacket, £89, Boden

5. Sunglasses, £12, Accessorize

6. Boyfriend jeans, £199.50 in the sale, Current/Elliott at Net A Porter

7. Jewelled bracelet, £19, Z for Accessorize

8. Wellies, £55, Butterfly Twists (these actually can be folded in your luggage to save space)

And the ultimate chic festival piece? I'm anticipating the collaboration between Petit Bateau and K Way, which launches mid August - both practical and beautiful - I'm on the waiting list...

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