Posts tagged Dress
This year I’ve been trying to add more summer basics to my wardrobe, and after browsing countless online and high street stores, House of Fraser have really come up trumps. Though House of Fraser stock a lot of premium brands, they also sell a wide range of more affordable brands, so you can add staple pieces to your wardrobe on a budget, that can be worn year in year out.
House of Fraser recently challenged me to pick some summer items to style, up to the value of £30. I thought the best way to go for this challenge would be simple and versatile – things that could be dressed up or down and paired with different things to create different looks – so I opted for this plain Jane Norman Maxi Vest Dress, and a cute little Ziba 3D Skull Bracelet.
Jane Norman Maxi Vest Dress / Ziba 3D Skull Bracelet / Primark Sandals / Alexander McQueen Cateye Sunglasses / Juno Black Patent Grab Bag
The dress is made from a light jersey fabric, so is very cool and comfortable, and the vest section is lined so you don’t have to wear a bra on hot summer days. I think the dress looks great as it is, but it also looks amazing with a sparkly cropped jacket and clutch for a glamorous evening look. This is currently discounted from £20 to £12, which is incredibly cheap for such a lovely piece.
I chose the Ziba Skull 3D Bracelet for several reasons. For one, I love skulls and covet anything with a skull on it, but this year I’ve also really started to love fine and delicate pieces of jewellery. I used to always wear big chunky items, but the beauty of bracelets like this is you can layer them together, but if it’s too hot to be wearing a thick wedge of bangles, they look elegant and lovely worn alone. This particular bracelet was £9 when I chose it, down from £12, but it’s now only £6 so is even more affordable. Also, if skulls aren’t your thing, the Ziba range has loads of other designs to choose from. I especially like their cute little owl.
In total, my House of Fraser items have a value of £32, but with the online discount they now come in at £18, which is a pretty good saving. I’ll definitely be going back to House of Fraser in the future to look for more affordable basics. Also, why not check out their current range of maxi dresses and bracelets?
*This Jane Norman Maxi Vest Dress and Ziba 3D Skull Bracelet were sent to me on behalf of House of Fraser, for review purposes. All opinions expressed are honest and my own.*
One of my favourite things about summer is the storms. The rain that cools the air down, the thunder, the lightning – it’s all so exciting! This weekend has been particularly unpredictable, with amazing storms one minute, and bright, hot sun the next, which though nice, makes it difficult to know what to wear.
New Look Multi Strap Skater Dress / Everything5Pounds Waterfall Jacket / Alexander McQueen Cateye Sunglasses / Primark Tights / New Look Stud Pumps / Topshop Leather Stud Bag (Thrifted) / Accessories Boutique Heavy Spike Bracelet
The key for me has been light layers that can be added/removed accordingly. A dress makes a great base for this kind of look, as it’s cool enough for the sun, but can be made rain and wind proof with a jacket and tights. I went for this New Look Multi Strap Skater Dress that I bought in the last ASOS sale, and added a pair of basic sheer black tights from Primark to avoid flashing my undies in the wind, and a lovely waterfall jacket from Everything5Pounds. I absolutely love this jacket as it’s really comfortable, and is perfect for warm weather as a cover as the fabric is so lightweight.
To accessorise, I wore my Alexander McQueen Cateye Sunglasses, that are an absolute essential when the sun is shining, and I also gave my New Look stud pumps a first outing. Of course my trusty thrifted Topshop leather bag was a necessity too, and I added a heavy spike bracelet from Accessories Boutique to bring the stud theme of the outfit together.
What have you been styling during this stormy summer weekend?
Not so long ago I was sorting through my wardrobe, working out what to keep, what to sell, and what to get rid of, and I realised I have one dress in particular that survives all of my wardrobe clear outs. I’ve had this black and white star print skater dress for almost half a decade, and since buying it from Matalan I’ve actually dropped two dress sizes, but I just can’t bear to part with it. It’s even been taken in at the back so I can still wear it!
This dress has become affectionately known as my throwback dress, as it’s seen me through many seasons, layered up or down accordingly, and many events, including christmas day 2011 and my 22nd birthday. It always reminds me of when I first met my fiancé too. It may not be the most breathtaking item of clothing that I own, but I treasure it and will probably always keep it.
My little sentimental encounter with my throwback dress got me thinking… what will be my throwback dress of the future? A dress that I currently love and will keep for years to come. There are a few candidates, but I think this Dolly & Delicious skater dress from New Look will be it.
I call this one my goth fairy dress, and I absolutely love the layered net skirt and cut out sides. I get the feeling it will become a staple wardrobe item this summer. I plan on wearing it to several gigs and events in the coming months, so it will undoubtedly become associated with fantastic memories that I just won’t want to get rid of.
Do you have a throwback dress? If so, why do you keep it?
Last Sunday I visited my favourite car boot sale once again, and came away with yet another decent fashion haul. I managed to find a few things that I’ve actually been looking for for a while, which I was very pleased about, as well as a few other unexpected items. Here’s what I bought…
Topshop Studded Lace Bralet £5
This cost a bit more than I usually like to spend on items at a car boot sale, but I just couldn’t resist the studs and lace! Topshop bralets seem to be really popular at the moment, and this one has an RRP of £38, so I’m pleased to have found one in my size at a fraction of the price. According to the lady I bought it from it is unworn too, other than being tried on.
New Look Cutout Heart Dress £2
I’ve been wanting a cut out heart dress for ages, so when I spotted this under a huge pile of clothes on one stall, I snapped it up. It’s exactly my size too! I love it, and it looks like it’s never been worn which is a bonus.
Sans Souci Polka Dot Dip Hem Blouse £2
This is one of my favourite finds of the day. I’m currently on the look out for more summer tops, and this will be perfect for warm, sunny days. The dip hem and button back detail are really lovely, and are what caught my eye when I saw it on the rail. Sans Souci isn’t a brand I’m familiar with, but the blouse still had a TK Maxx tag attached, and it cost £9.99 new.
Oasis Leather Studded Waist Belt £1.50
Again, I’ve been trying to source a decent waist belt for a while, so this was another bargain I couldn’t pass up. The belt is made from real leather, and still had its Oasis tags attached so is brand new.
H&M Silver and Grey Jumper £1
It’s not like I need another jumper, but I actually saw a similar jumper to this in H&M last season and wanted one, so I bought it anyway. I thought it’d be itchy, but it’s actually nice and soft, and I know I’ll get plenty of wear out of it.
Next Oversized Polka Dot Shirt 25p
This shirt is three sizes too big for me, but I bought it to wear it as an oversized cardigan during cool summer evenings. And anyway, at 25p I couldn’t say no.
Stuart Little Soft Toy 50p
And just because I have a soft spot for cuddly toys and rodents, I brought Stuart Little home for 50p. He has slightly tatty whiskers and was a little grubby, but after a quick bath he’s now squeaky clean (excuse the pun!)
What do you think of my latest thrifty finds? Which piece stands out for you?
Today my fiancé and I visited Foxton Locks with my sister and her boyfriend. Foxton Locks are ten canal locks on the Leicester line of the Grand Union Canal, and the whole area is so lovely and green. I’ve always enjoyed visiting the Locks, ever since I was a child, but today’s trip was extra special as it was the first time my fiancé had been. We all had a nice time and had a little picnic whilst we watched the boats go by, before going for a walk along the canal paths.
As April’s weather is usually unpredictable, I thought layers would be best, so I wore my favourite Primark skater dress (which is becoming a Spring wardrobe staple of mine), and teamed it with my trusty faux leather biker jacket and some basic leggings. Over this I wore an oversized but light floral skull scarf which I thrifted last year, for an extra bit of warmth if necessary. As it happens, the weather was gorgeous and the sun was shining, but luckily it didn’t get too hot.
Primark Faux Leather Biker Jacket / Primark Faux Leather Cap Sleeve Skater Dress / Primark Leggings / Dr Martens 1460 W Purple Shimmer Boots / Abandon Floral Skull Scarf (thrifted) / Topshop Leather Stud Bag (thrifted)
As I knew we’d be walking a lot, I thought it best to throw on my Dr Martens, which was definitely the right call, and I also took another thrifty find of mine – my Topshop leather stud bag. The perfect size to carry my camera and picnic food.
I’m so pleased that Spring is finally underway as I love being out and about enjoying the nice weather, and today was a great opportunity to do so! Have you been taking advantage of the sunshine lately?
Up until recently I would never have even considered shopping in Bonmarché. I’d been in there a few times with my mum and grandma, but everything was just a bit too… ‘mature’ for my style. But then I was offered the chance to choose an item from the Bonmarché website to review, and suddenly my opinion was changed. The item I chose is this gorgeous black and white polka dot dress from the new David Emanuel collection. David Emanuel was the designer who created Princess Diana’s internationally loved wedding dress, and since then he has dressed countless female celebrities, and has sold collections in the likes of Harrods and Harvey Nichols.
I absolutely love polka dots so it seemed only natural to go for this dress, and I’m glad I did. The print is bold, but the cut of the dress is very sophisticated, so you can make a statement whilst still looking chic. The front of the dress has a mock wrap effect, and a pretty peplum detail that sits just over the hip; both of which are extremely flattering, and the fabric is soft and stretchy for ultimate comfort.
In terms of sizing, the dress is pretty generous. I’m usually a size 10-12 and opted for a 12 in this style, but it is slightly roomy at the back so I should probably have gone for a 10. This particular dress is available in sizes 10 to 24, and retails for £28 in all sizes.
I perhaps wouldn’t wear this dress casually as it’s a bit too smart for kicking around town in, but it would be absolutely perfect for the office or, as Bonmarché state, an ‘elegant occasion’. It definitely looks the business teamed with a pair of elegant black heels!
Though the majority of Bonmarché’s stock is perhaps not very ‘me’, I’ve definitely learnt that you shouldn’t dismiss a shop based on prejudgments. Even the most unlikely of places can have some hidden gems lurking on the rails, so it’s always worth having a browse to see what you can find!
If you like the look of this dress, or want to see the rest of David Emanuel’s Bonmarché collection, click here.
*This David Emanuel Spot Peplum Dress was sent to me by Bonmarché for review purposes. All opinions expressed are honest and my own.*
After two years of hard work, and juggling studying with a part-time job, yesterday I finally graduated from the University of Leicester with a postgraduate degree in Modern Literature! It’s been a long and, at times, difficult couple of years, but I am so happy that I can now officially call myself a Master of the Arts. And to make things even better, my fiancé graduated at the same time with the same degree, and because our surnames are alphabetically next to each other, we got to cross the stage one after the other! I was very nervous before the ceremony, which is odd considering I’d done it all before in 2011 in the same place, but in the end I really enjoyed the day and I’m so proud of my achievement.
Between them my family took hundreds of photographs, but after a hectic day I’m yet to sort through all of them, so for now I can only share a few. Hopefully I’ll have some better ones to add some time next week which actually show my outfit properly!
On the day I wore a beautiful textured floral dress from Dorothy Perkins, which I bought especially for the ceremony. We were told to wear ‘sombre colours’ but I didn’t want to look too drab, so I chose something with a nice print and teamed it with red lips and nails to match the colour of my hood.
Illamasqua Lipstick in ‘Snap’ / Ciaté Nail Varnish in ‘Dangerous Affair’
Excuse the pose on that one!
In the evening, my family, my fiancé, my fiancé’s family and I went out for a meal to celebrate the occasion. I wore the same dress as I did during my graduation, but I swapped my low New Look heels (I didn’t want to fall over on the stage!) for my new Kurt Geiger Sally Ankle Boots, my red lips for pink lips, and I also took my Zatchels Gothic Lace Saddle Bag out for a spin.
Also, I feel like MUA’s Pro-Base Makeup Fixing Mist needs a special mention here. I used the spray in the morning after applying my make up, and it did an amazing job at keeping it in place. I expected to have to reapply my make up before going out for the meal in the evening, but it still looked great, and did so right up until I removed it at 11pm! A real saviour on a long, busy day.
What did you wear to your graduation?
Last week, whilst browsing vintage-inspired fashion website Beau Boutique, I spotted this gorgeous Sugarhill Boutique Mice Loves Dress in the sale for just £26, down from £56. Those who read my blog regularly will know that I’m crazy about rats, and the little cuties on the dress reminded me of my two babies, Miggley and Mog. Luckily, at the time it was still in stock in my size, and Hania of Beau Boutique very kindly sent me the dress to review. Thank you!
My fiancé and I went out for a nice lunch yesterday, so I decided to give the dress its first outing. The dress, which is from Sugarhill Boutique’s AW13 collection, is made from a light, chiffon-like mulberry coloured fabric, and is fully lined with sheer sleeves. The fabric hangs and moves beautifully, and is so comfortable and flattering to wear.
The print is my favourite thing about the dress as it depicts two mice (or rats as I like to think) forming a love heart with their tails, and it covers the whole of the dress. At the back of the dress there’s a wide exposed zip that runs to just below the waist, which I really like, and there’s also a contrasting sheer black panel at the waist which gives it a bit of an edge.
In terms of sizing I’m usually an average size 12, but the dress is a 14/Large and fits well but is slightly roomy, so I’d say it’s fairly accurate to size, if not slightly small. Just make sure you check the size guide before ordering!
This dress has gone straight to the top of my favourites list. It’s so pretty and feminine, and detailed enough that it doesn’t even need any accessories to set it off, in my opinion. I just teamed it with black tights and ankle boots, and an oversized bag, and was ready to go! Oh and the important test… My rats also approve!
Beau Boutique stock a wide range of women’s clothing, inspired by celebrity and vintage style, including brands such as Ruby Rocks, Madam Rage, Motel and Voodoo Girl. The site has become my go-to place to look for dresses and clothes that you can’t find on the high street, and they offer free standard UK delivery which is always nice when ordering online! You can browse Beau Boutique’s collections here.
*This Sugarhill Boutique Mice Loves Dress was sent to me by Beau Boutique for review purposes. All opinions expressed are honest and my own.*
For the second part of my entry into the #FFPaperDollParty styling challenge, I have put together four more looks for the party season. I’ve had so much fun dressing up my personalised paper doll with the peel off clothes that came with her, so I hope you enjoy seeing the outfits I’ve created for her!
December Birthday Party
Everyone has that one friend or relative with a December birthday, and I actually think it’s quite nice to get away from everything Christmas-related for one night, so for a December Birthday Party I went for this pretty Rose Print Shift Dress. It isn’t overly festive and could easily be worn at any time of year, so would make a great wardrobe staple for 2014.
Whether you’re lazing around watching TV, having a girly evening with friends or playing board games with the family, a festive night in is an absolute necessity at this time of year. If you’re not going out you don’t have to dress up, but you can still look good whilst being comfortable by teaming a gorgeous camisole with a pair of cosy leggings.
For a night out this black Tuxedo Playsuit would be perfect. The classic cut and satin trim are really chic, and teamed with your favourite heels, a cute clutch and some statement jewellery you’d be effortlessly party-ready. The red version is also really eye-catching if black isn’t your thing.
Bar with Boyfriend
If you’re heading to a fancy bar with your boyfriend for a few drinks, these Leather-Look Trousers and Sequin Sleeve Jacket are classy and smart, but also have a bit of an edge, especially with just a pretty basque underneath! The Sequin Sleeve Jacket is easily my favourite piece from F&F’s partywear collection – it’s stunning, and so versatile.
Which look is your favourite?
Having been off work for Christmas for over a week already, I’ve had a lot of time on my hands, so earlier this week I decided to play around with my personalised paper doll from F&F at Tesco, and put together some party looks for the #FFPaperDollParty competition. I even created a little catwalk for my mini-me to pose on! I’ve created an outfit for every festive celebration I could think of (plus one for going back to work in the New Year), so I thought I’d share them all with you.
Work Christmas Party
A lot of work Christmas parties tend to happen straight after work, so I thought I’d put together an outfit that could be worn at work during the day, and effortlessly transformed into something gorgeous for the evening. I love how pretty this Floral Scuba Skirt is. It looks smart teamed with a black blazer, but remove the blazer to reveal a pretty top and you’re ready to party!
Meal with Friends
A Christmas catch-up meal with friends calls for something more casual, so I opted for this cute Gem Collar Skater Dress and leggings. The sparkly detail on the dress is also really glam, so you can look fab whilst feeling comfortable! A loose-fitting dress like this also enables you to eat more, haha.
Christmas Eve Party
For a Christmas Eve party I chose this beautiful red Strapless Tailored Jumpsuit as it’s suitably festive, and looks effortlessly chic. Christmas Eve is a busy day for most of us, so to be able to throw on something this simple and still look amazing is always a bonus. If you’re worried about getting a bit cold though, it’d look amazing with a Sequin Sleeve Jacket worn over the top.
I like to look and feel good on Christmas day, so I always buy myself a fab new dress to wear. This Floral Scuba Dress is just the ticket, and the classic cut would suit any age, and any size.
Boxing Day is usually a lazy day spent recovering from the previous day’s antics and over-indulgence, so a Trumpet Top like this would hide any evidence of having eaten far too much! I love the contrasting black leather-look panel on the front the top too, and it’s bang on trend. Dress it down with a pair of Leather-Look Trousers, black skinnies or leggings, and you’re ready to go.
Once I’ve recovered from Christmas day, I like to hit the shops and try and grab a few sale bargains. Wandering around the cold winter shopping streets calls for a coat, and this red Skater Skirted Coat is stunning! I’ve always been a fan of red coats as they’re real attention grabbers, and this one is no different. Again, team it with some black leggings and a cute top and you’re ready to shop ’til you drop!
Last Minute Party
Ever been invited to a party last minute and not had anything to wear? Panic! Well, there’d be no need to panic with this blue Tie Waist Dress in your wardrobe. You could put it on with minutes to spare and still look the belle of the ball, and who wouldn’t want that? The colour is absolutely wonderful, and something a little bit different from the usual Christmas colours.
New Year Party
New Year is the perfect time to pull on your favourite LBD and work the room. I’m a big, big fan of Little Black Dresses, so I found it hard to choose between these two beauties. The Embellished Cuff Dress has beautiful sparkly cuffs, and a flattering tunic cut so would hide any lumps and bumps. The Satin Ruched Support Dress is perhaps my winner though, as it’s simple, but still a show stopper. I also really like the V neck. Which would you choose?
Back to Work
Now, I know we don’t want to think about it just yet, but after all this celebrating we have to go back to work (boo!), so we might as well do it in style! Again, the blazer makes an appearance, with a pretty camisole top and, for a bit of glitz to remind us of the previous weeks’ festivities, a Gem Embellished Pencil Skirt.
Which look is your favourite? Check back soon for more #FFPaperDollParty entries!