Wardrobe Additions.

Now that the season has officially changed (I'm sure it's dropped at least 5 degrees since I left my apartment this morning!) it's the time of year when I have to think about the logistics of swapping my S/S wardrobe with my A/W wardrobe that I keep stored at my Mum's house. Yes, I have too many clothes. No, I don't have enough space in my home to keep them so yes, I take advantage of my Mum.

The logistics become a little more complicated when you consider I haven't a car of my own and the door to door trip is about an hour long. That and the fact I have about 3 suitcases full of knitted goodness that, as the temperature continues to slump, I am finding I increasingly need. So I've decided to do a mental tot up of the things I actually need and cull those I don't.

But once again, just as I do every year, I've found myself in a frenzy of lust after this seasons new designs that have left me seriously considering trading in my winter-sun holiday for a couple of them.

Then again I'm in desperate need for some vitamin E so maybe I won't cancel those plane tickets just yet...

But if I did here's what I'd be lining up.

I know we're talking fantasies here but after this years catwalks were over I did notice a few glaring holes in my AW things so here's a more realistic few bits I need to purchase in the next few weeks.

 Topshop Knitted Shimmer Shoulder Sweat available here.

Oasis Sequin Animal Sleeve Sweater available at ASOS here.

ASOS Supersoft High Waist Ultra Skinny in Washed Grey #11 available here.
H&M Knitted Hat available here.

As you can tell the main colour I'll be sporting this season is grey. I've been a fan of the shade for many moons now so the fact the high street has latched onto it this year has me a little overjoyed.

Continuing the grey theme how about these for some amazing party season shoes from Available here. I definitely need to make these a buying priority. By far the coolest heel I've seen in some time.

And just before you worry I'll be a total wash out colour wise this season look at this beauty to add a pop of colour to any outfit throughout the colder months. Available here.

Whichever way you look at it I better get saving. Post-holiday of course!

Updates and Resets.

The beauty of having a housemate who works as a buyer in women's shoes is something that I, admittedly, sometimes undervalue. Well, not anymore!

In recent posts you'll remember I've been in search of a new sartorial identity and I think I'm onto something but the void between the 'old' and 'new' wardrobe can sometimes be made bigger by lack of funds to instantly update the whole thing.

This is where my housemate comes into her own. Last night she asked if I'd like to join her for a gig but as I already had plans I declined and ended up heading home earlier than her. On my way home she messaged me again and said to look in the yellow bag on the sofa as she'd got 'things' for me. Things? Things? 'Things' doesn't cover what gems awaited me. Three brand new pairs of slipper pumps from Matalan that I'd gushed over a few months back at their press day in London.

Of course I am wearing a pair today so here's a closer look.

What I love about them is the colour matched studs - I've still not seen this anywhere but Matalan and she got me the same pair in the cobalt that I had seen at the press day and adored so much. Both are actually available online now. Black here and Cobalt here.

Here's the cobalt version for you to feast your eyes on.

What I think I love the most about these is that the studs are on the outer edge and top of the foot only. Any girl who bought Topshop's iconic version last season will know the raw pain of dragging a stud across your inner ankle and the torturous, slow process of it healing. No need to worry about that here though - hurrah!

In other news I'm bored of my dip-dyed hair after a week so am dying it back tomorrow evening. I know, crazy Friday night plans, right?

So here's a last look at it before I reset it to its former glory. (This is it yesterday french plaited down one side.)

Glitz And Glamour From Galibardy.

When yet another of my much-loved embellished necklaces fell apart recently I made a decision - to stop buying cheaply made jewellery and start buying those 'investment pieces' I've heard so much about over the years.

For some time now I've been coming to the realisation I will have to start swapping cheap and cheerful for items with a little more substance.

While still clutching the last fronds of my destroyed necklace it made sense to start there. After all, if you know me at all you'll know that I'm a firm believer in my accessories. They're usually the most outlandish part of any of my outfits so it seemed a natural place to begin. And I knew exactly which site I was going to visit first to indulge my new found need for quality products.

Galibary is a site I can get lost in for hours. If I had just won the lottery you'd definitely not hear from me on here for days. Possibly weeks.

I first saw this necklace some months ago but after a recent magazine promotion of 20% off it seemed as though it was meant to be. A flurry of clicks later and I had this beauty on pre-order. (It's continued to sell out time and time again all year so far - currently you need to email the designer to get on the waiting list. Don't let this deter you - I only had to wait a week or so.)

A corker, isn't it?

It's so incredible it only needs worn with jeans and a t-shirt and I feel like a superstar. In fact I have it on today with one of my favourite chiffon shirts and chinos. 

At £45.00 it might not be everyone's cup of tea but the site has a veritable feast of offers for all budgets including these stunners:

French Lace necklace - £14.00

Red Elektra necklace - £28.00
I think we all deserve a bit of glitz every now and then so I don't feel in the least bit guilty about it.

Take a look yourself, I challenge you to come away with an empty basket!


Dye 2DyeFor.

A couple of posts ago you'll remember me wittering on about how much I adore Jessica Alba. I came to the distressing conclusion that I'll never actually be her some time ago so decided to use her as sartorial inspiration instead. It was all going very well until last week I saw some pap shots of her which left me with a totally new thing to lust over...her hair.

I have, for a while, looked at the ombre (dip-dye) trend with jealous admiration; never having the guts to change my own hair so drastically but over the weekend, after spending time with a friend and her newly 'blonded' tips I caught the fever and couldn't think of anything other than getting to my local Boots to get a home-dye kit. After some research it seemed the most easy to use for first timers like myself was L'Oreal Preference - Wild Ombres which has kits according to original hair colour. Being a very dark brown haired gal I was keen not to use a dye designed for lighter hair that would leave me looking as if I'd attacked myself with a bottle of spray bleach.

Next on my 'to do' list before taking the plunge was to look up celebrities and bloggers who'd inflicted the same style upon their own poor hairs. And it wasn't difficult. A single search of Google and I was inundated with images of women with bleached tips. While the idea of subjecting my hair to such damage scared me the results I was seeing on other people's heads were doing little to dissuade me from going for it too.

Alexa Chung, Drew Barrymore and Billie Piper

Bloggers who've home dyed too
So Monday night, glass of wine in hand and housemate looking at me as if I'd had some sort of brain malfunction (this is generally a sign I'm doing something right) I trundled into my bathroom, L'Oreal in my clutches, and set to work. Here's what happened next:

Oh, just look at the optimism!
Here's when I realised what I was actually doing...
First attempt at styling it
Blonde tips
First style before applying toner - I told you, I'm a newby at this!
That was how it looked on Monday night and the tone alarmed me a little. I'd been looking for a duskier blonde, not a strawberry blonde! After consulting some friends whilst trying to keep a cold sweat at bay someone used the word 'toner'. I was in a blur so I can't remember who but what I can remember is getting up 30 minutes early yesterday to get to Boots and buy the relevant products to try and salvage the image in my head.

So last night off I went again, back into the bathroom and here's how it's looking today.

After finally getting the guts to tell my mum (yes, I'm aware I sound 16, not 26 but she loves my hair so I felt bad) it's safe to say she had a mild meltdown. And then by chance, while still on the phone to me and simultaneously flicking through the television channels she happened upon a girl entering the Jeremy Kyle stage with the same hair...Eurgh.
My mum is someone whose opinion really matters to me so the fact she really dislikes it has made me think twice about what on earth I thought I was doing.

After the JK relevation
Now I want to dye it back. What do you think I should do? I need mass opinions and fast!


An Unlikely Icon.

I don't know about you but when 9PM rolled round last night I felt a little lost. Last week, every night, I spent a very happy 60 minutes watching Channel 4's incredible show Hotel GB. For those of you who missed it (shame on you) it was a pop up hotel in London staffed by some of the best known TV personalities regularly seen on Channel 4.

Mary Portas and Gordon Ramsey were co-Managers, Gok Wan ran the bar, Kirstie Allsop was Concierge and a veritable smörgåsbord of other celebs covered everything from the spa to cleaning the rooms.

Never again will I be able to picture Gordon Ramsey without the image of him on all fours asking poor Katie Piper about a 'back, sack and crack wax' popping up in my mind. *shudder*
If I wasn't already sure she is one of the best women to grace this earth the way she brushed Gordon's madness aside in such a ladylike manner would certainly have convinced me of her brilliance.

One thing I have gladly taken from the show though is a new style icon. Mary Portas. I know, I'm as surprised as you. I'm usually quite feminine in the way I dress - I like high heels, chiffon and lashings of mascara - but I couldn't help thinking, evening after evening how great she looked. And after being caught tweeting about it I was asked to feature a post about her screen style on my blog - it took me less than 0.86 seconds to agree to it!

Happily after some research I have found a few of the things she wore that I loved so much. Here's a closer look.

Mary about to give Paddy a black eye with hers!

The Spectacle ring in action.

Both rings are Swarovski but unfortunately the former has sold out (looks like I'm not the only one who got a new style crush last week) but there are similar styles herehere and here that are equally divine. Luckily the second is still in stock, although I'd imagine not for long. You can buy it here.

Mary tweeting about her boots.

Other things I loved were her patterned tights and great low heeled boots - fashionable yet comfortable enough to wear every day. Surely the holy grail of shoes.

The tights she wore were Mary Portas for Charnos (shop the collection here) and the boots were Mary and Clarks and are available here and here. I love these boots - I have a lot of meetings all over for my job so a heel I can run around in is essential. These might have to be my next investment.

All in all I'm thrilled I've found a new stylish woman to keep a beady eye on. Although I'm not sure that I shouldn't have known better - her partner's Melanie Rickey (of Grazia fame) for goodness sake, it's surely in her nature to be this cool, no?



Jessica Alba. I am in awe of this girl. I haven't seen her look anything less than fantastic for about 3 years now.

That's it. I'm off to live in a climate that allows silk skirts, bare legs and leather jackets in October. We, in England, were promised an 'Indian Summer' but that has yet to arrive (I know it never will) so being the practical girl I am, I am seriously considering getting my furs out. 

Uber cool couple alert. I love how much monochrome she's been wearing of late. It's definitely a trend I'm going to embrace this A/W. Hair extension ponytail: optional.

Even on her chill down days she looks the epitome of chic. I might plaster my inner wardrobe doors in images of her to help inspire me of a morning.

Why don't I look that cool when I'm just strolling along, phone in hand? If I tried that I'd more closely resemble a discombobulated gazelle who's just been introduced to technology for the first time. All awkward strides and clashing head first into innocent passers-by.

There is definitely something about her that I'm looking into copying though so stay tuned for updates via this blog...I feel a change coming on.


A Magazine Told Me To Do It.

One of the (many) perks to my job is the fact we as a company have a weekly subscription to Look magazine. This is because a lot of the labels we agent for are used in it and we need to keep abreast of what's on offer from rivals and the general feel of the high street.

It is purely a coincidence that we completely love the magazine and fight over who gets to read it first. (I often play the 'manager' card, I must admit.)

A definite favourite section of the magazine for me is the '4 Step by Steps' in the beauty section. I love make up and beauty products but I have a very set routine so easy guides on how to update my look are always welcome.

Last week I was quick to flick to the aforementioned section and was pleased to feel an immediate draw to a particular look. "Barbie-Pink Metallic Nails," it read. "Get me home to my nail varnish box," I thought.

Happily I already own a silver metallic finish polish and a baby pink so when I got home I got straight to work and here are the results.

If I'm totally honest I didn't like it. If I had thought more about it I'd have preferred a gold base with black on top because I felt that the silver line around the outside of the nail made my hands look as if they were needing a good scrub.

However, it's each to his own so if you'd like to replicate the look all 3 varnishes are Barry M and available widely at Boots and Superdrug.

I did it on Friday but on Sunday evening I had a date and to avoid any confusion over the state of my hands I quickly removed it and replaced it with a lovely navy blue which I much prefer.

This week's Look has just arrived so flick to the usual page I did and here's this week's challenge:

I'll let you know how it goes if I can face chucking nail varnish at my own nails like someone with a vendetta against a full bottle of colour. Or maybe not. We'll see.