No spend January

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It’s been a while peeps since I wrote anything on my blog, definitely missed it and I’m not gonna drop the ball this year. So I’m starting this year with a piece about not spending, yes you heard right, not spending, or what has become to be well known as no spend January. Anyone who knows me and knows me well had a right laugh when I told them Im not buying any clothing, bags, shoes or anything fashion related for the whole month of January. I’ve been known to be a spender and I cannot resist a good bargain or sale, mainly being the Zara sale, but doesn’t anyone? And don’t lie because I know every single woman out there was standing guard on their phones and laptops on Boxing day waiting for the sale start. I’m not gonna lie, seeing as it was still December and the thought of no spend January hadn’t even crossed my mind, I did manage to do some damage. However, this year I wasn’t so excited to receive my order and sadly I was disappointed when it all arrived. In normal circumstances even if I liked an item and would probably only wear it once, I would have kept it and a month later just given it away. This year was different, I thought long and hard about each item, did I even like it, would I wear it, how often would I wear it, was it worth the money and what was the cost per wear? These are things I do always consider anyway, but not as hard as this time. It was so hard to pack away all the lovely bits I had ordered, things I had been eyeing up before the sale, I had even at one point bought most of them, only to return them, knowing they would go in the sale. In the end can you believe I only kept two items, yes two items!!!!!!Image result for no spend january

For someone who does like to shop, no spend January was a huge thing to do, I didn’t thing I was capable of doing it, neither did anyone else, lol! But you know what, it wasn’t that hard for some reason this time round. I just didn’t like anything enough to want to buy it and luckily if I did have a little look, my size or what I would have wanted was out of stock. I would put lots of stuff in my baskets, because I was allowed to look and create wish lists for when i could spend, but when i looked over what i had put in my basket, I realised I didn’t need any of it or really want it and just emptied the basket or exited the site. I keep telling people when they don’t believe that yes i do shop a lot, but the what you don’t realise is that the majority of what i buy actually gets returned. I feel like for me that its the thrill of shopping, actually buying and receiving the items that gives me the buzz. Once I get the items, I sometimes don’t even bother to open the box and have a look or even try on, it all gets sent back. Obviously once in a while I do actually stuff I really want and keep it, in those instances I have most likely sold a few bits and saved up enough to buy what I want.

Last year I watched a programme called Fashions Dirty Secrets: Stacey Dooley Investigates, and I’m not kidding it totally changed the way I looked at clothes and the fashion industry. It might sound like an exaggeration to you, but to me this was major in terms of how I now want to buy clothes, where I buy them from and how often. It made me realise that there are better things out there  to be spending my money on, of course I’m not going to stop buying clothes, this is what I do, I buy, wear and talk about fashion. The programme really put some perspective on how what we buy as consumers impacts the world around us, how what we buy and throw away effects people and the environment.

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Unfortunately the programme isn’t available on BBC iplayer anymore, but I have found something interesting on You Tube for you to watch https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MgA0vbTFvvU

Im not saying that this one programme changed me overnight and my spending habits. However it definitely got me thinking and triggered no spend January and my journey of being a more responsible consumer. I realised that I spend to much money on stuff I don’t actually want or need in the sales and sometimes just in general, doesn’t even be clothes or shoes. I end up having a clear out every so often and give away so much stuff, good for those who are on the receiving end, but not good for my conscious or bank balance. If I want to set a good example to my family and my followers and get my husband of my back for spending to much, I need show them that life isn’t just about buying stuff or having the latest stuff, especially when it comes to fashion, and yes i am well aware my main passion and subject of my blog and social media is fashion.Image result for dom and ink stacey dooley

I want to be more careful about spending my money on throw away fashion, clothes I don’t need, clothes that will last me one wash, one wear or even one season. Lets start thinking more about capsule wardrobes, classic pieces you can buy and wear forever, cost per wear, i do this anyway with expensive purchases, but I think we should do it with everything we buy. Also don’t be too influenced by others, i know its so easy and we all do and I’m definitely guilty of it, But if you don’t need it, don’t really like it and maybe cant afford it, please think twice. I want to start being a responsibly consumer for my followers, i want to show you that if I wear or buy anything, unfortunately it wasn’t gifted to me, haven’t got to that stage yet, it was bought with my own money or savings, so I don’t want you to go out and buy everything i wear or use, of course its your choice if you want to, but don’t feel like you have to. I like to buy for you sometimes and review stuff to give you a better understanding before parting with your money.

You will be pleased to know that I stuck to my no spend January plan and it went so well I’m gonna try and continue it, maybe not have a complete ban on spending, lets be realistic I’m still me, I’m still a shopaholic, lol. Plus it’s my birthday next month and I can’t not treat myself!

Please let me have your comments, do you like stuff like this, should I do more of it?

 

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Coffee & Diamonds

 

Last week I went along to show some support to a friend who was holding an event at the famous Elan Cafe in Knightsbridge. She was showcasing just a small selection of diamond rings, earrings and bracelets that she sells on her website Luxury Promise. So being both a coffee and diamond lover, I couldn’t of thought of a better way to spend my morning.

Firstly, if you haven’t been to the Elan Cafe yet, it is definitely worth a visit, its very busy and most of the time you will have to queue up, but once your in the queuing will have been worth it. The place is beautiful, from the interior decorations to the beautiful displays of delicious desserts, just a warning that you will want to eat all of them!

 

In I went really excited to see my friend Sabrina and her beautiful diamonds, I also had my eye on something which I was hoping to see in the flesh. She had set up in the back room which was home to the famous flower wall and it looked beautiful and was definitely the perfect setting for her event. It was a very casual event, friendly and great atmosphere, where people could admire the diamonds on display, have a play about and wear some of them, and of course have a coffee and a good chit chat. The moment I walked in I made a beeline for the rings, this is one item I had a my eye on and may have cheekily bought one too! Why not, it was soon going to be my birthday soon and what better present could I buy for myself but a diamond!

I’ve bought bags from Luxury Promise before, by the way if you are looking for any luxury pre loved items, I would definitely go check out the Luxury promise website, everything on there is 100% authentic. You are sure to find something you are after, whether it bags, shoes, clothes or jewellery. This was the first time I considered buying jewellery from Luxury promise, only because I wasn’t sure about just buying such an expensive piece of jewellery without actually seeing it in person, so when so I heard about the event, I was so excited. However, you can actually make an appointment with Sabrina to go to her showroom and see what she has before buying anything.

Before leaving I of course had to have a coffee and a spot of breakfast. We got seated very quickly, it was however, a tight squeeze as it was really busy, but we didn’t mind. Service was a a little slow, but considering how busy it was I wasn’t surprised. I ordered a Freddo Cappuccino  and an Acai bowl, bowl equally yummy and very filling.

I will definitely be going back the Elan cafe, maybe have some cake next time! And I cant wait to get my ring which Sabrina is re sizing for me. So if you haven’t been to the Elan Cafe, go give it it a visit, they have one in Park Lane and one on Brompton Road. Then go check out Luxury Promise, they have some beautiful things on there!

P.S I couldn’t resist taking some outfit shots outside peoples doorstep, hope you like them!

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Glad it’s still coat weather

I love winter, I love wrapping up to keep warm and I’m so glad it’s still cold and I can still wear my coat! I guess most of the time its actually more like a security blanket for me, I feel naked without it. I know I sound crazy, but I also went a little crazy buying coats this season, I mean who needs more than one or two coats? Not me, lol!

So as I do love a good coat, I wanted to share with you guys some great ones I have found and love and some that are bloody great bargain since the sales have started, I do also own some of them 🙂

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Topshop- sorry this colour is sold out, but here is a link to a camel coloured one

I usually stay away from coloured coats as I feel they are just a trend and not classic enough, however this red number totally caught my eye and I fell in love. Its not a classic colour like black, but I think by having a red coat in your wardrobe it will act as a pick me up coat when you having a bad wardrobe day and need a pick me up, styled with a black polo neck, skinny jeans and so ankle boots you can’t go wrong. This coat is also so flattering being double breasted and a good midi length for both tall and short frames, and wait for it, it was a bargain at only £30, I couldn’t believe it and to have it there and then!

I have also been obsessed with teddy coats this winter, so much so I own two, however not my dream one from Maxmara which I will show you here later.  They are so cosy and warm, can be dressed up or down and go with almost anything from jeans to a dress. These are two of my favourites, which I also own!

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Newlook

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Topshop- Sorry sold out online

I am a huge fan of animal print, so this coat is a dream! So chic and beautiful, bought this in the sale actually after a lot of consideration, because I really wanted the one that H&M did in collaboration Erdem. But as per usual, it was sold out almost immediately and I was nit going to pay her the odds for it on Ebay!!!!!

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Zara- Sorry sold out online

This is another Topshop bargain that I picked up, navy, double breasted and has a detachable faux fur collar. Not the warmest of coats, but it is super cute on and if layered will keep you warm and when it gets warmer it will be perfect. Unfortunately its sold out and so is the Burgundy colour it came in.

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Topshop- sorry sold out online

New addition to my coat collection is this gorgeous coat from Newlook, I love the colour and the way it drapes on me, so comfy and casual, but can also be worn smart. I just love an oversized coat, sometimes they look a little silly on me, but I really don’t care, the bigger the better I say, especially in the winter so I can wear all my lovely chunky knits under them.

Newlook

Now this is where I start dreaming over some coats that I would love to have in my wardrobe, but some reasons, one being I can’t afford them and two even if I could they are sadly sold out all the time! This Teddy icon coat from Maxmara is complete dream, so many brands have tried to replicate, however I have not found one that compares and I would rather have the real thing. One day I will, yes one day, for now I will dream about it 🙂

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Maxmara

Burberry

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Baby Shower Shenanigans

Last weekend we held an afternoon tea baby shower for my youngest sister in law at the beautiful Rose Lounge at the Softitel St James in London. I love this hotel, so beautiful and elegant and the Rose Lounge is small and intimate. I’ve had afternoon tea at The Balcon which is also part of the hotel, but it has a completely different atmosphere to the Rose Lounge, which was perfect for our occasion. My sister in law was so surprised when she walked in and saw us all, oh did I forget to mention it was a surprise, oops!

The staff and the service we received was excellent, we were a lively bunch and we ate and played games, which no one seemed to care about, always a good sign! We all got to chose a tea each, and there was a wide selection, alternatives if your not a tea drinker are coffee or juice/soft drink.We were able to get refills too.

By the way they actually offer a Halal option if you let them know in advance, which a lot of places do these days, this is always a bonus. I’m not really fussed though and opted for fish and vegetarian sandwiches. A lot of places bring out everything altogether, however the Rose Lounge served us sandwiches and scones first, which were plain and chocolate and came with lemon curd, clotted cream and jam, Yum!

 

After playing a few games and being royally stuffed on sandwiches and scones, some of us even had seconds!!! Out came the French pastries and boy were there a lot of them and they looked stunning, made me not want to eat them and just look at them. However, I’m never one to pass on pastries, so got stuck in, as we had to share them, half of one was more than enough, and I managed to try nearly all of them, until I couldn’t eat anymore and a button on my jeans definitely had to be opened! lol should have worn something with a stretchy was it band really.

Finally, and more importantly, what did I wear? You would have already seen this my Instagram and Snapchat if you follow me, but if you don’t I’ve added a few pictures here with all the details. I went with a smart casual look, generally my go to look, I never like looking all smart or all casual, I like to mix things up, unless of course I’m on the school run, when its casual and comfort all the way. I fell in love with the top, got so many compliments, the jeans too and the shoes speak for themselves!

Shirt– Marks and Spencer

Jeans– (old, these are similar) Zara

Shoes– Harrods

 

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High street shoe haul

I love shoes just as much as I love bags. They can be designer or high street, I’m not fussed at all, they just need to be comfy and pretty! Well not always!!!

So my love of shoes got a little out of hand lately, I went on a bit of spree and bought just a few pairs of shoes, all from the high street of course, here are my favourites, hope some are yours too!

 

Zara £29.99

 

 

Marks & Spencer £29.50

Mules seems to be the shoe of the season and Gucci seem to be making them very popular and they do have some lovely pairs. However, if you don’t want to blow the budget on Gucci ones, the high street are doing so many that are very similar and cost a fraction of the price. I love the yellow ones from Zara, such a beautiful colour, so comfy and actually go with anything. I picked up the silver ones from Marks and Spencer’s,, a definite dupe of the Gucci ones. They are comfy and I’ve teamed them with jeans to keep it casual and not to smart.

 

 

H&M £17.99

 

 

Zara £15.99

I seem to have picked mainly flat shoes for my haul, but I  do them, they are go to being a busy mum, I can’t be doing high heels on the school run, I would most likely break an ankle! so ballet pumps are a staple in my wardrobe, H&M always have a good selection and the black ones are really nice and comfy and a bargain, well they were when I got them, they are now full price! the Zara ones are a bargain to, pretty to look and actually comfy, bit fiddly with the two straps but I don’t wear them as every day shoes.

 

Marks & Spencer £49.50

Lastly, these sandals I wasn’t  actually to keen on when I first saw them, I thought the ankle strap would be uncomfortable and rub on the bone. But when I saw them instore I decided to try them on and I was surprised, not only did they look fabulous on, but they were really comfy and not too high, I still wouldn’t wear them everyday though. Also these a dupe for Isabel Marant pair I recently saw and of course a bargain.

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Handbag Wishlist for 2017

I will never be content with the bags I have in my collection. As I buy one, I am already on the look out for my next one. I literally am addicted!

So I wanted to share with you the bags I have on my wish list for this year so far, just because it excites me and maybe I can inspire you to maybe make your first ever designer bag purchase or your next purchase if like me you are an addict.

Chloe Drew shoulder bag

Christian Dior Diorama bag

Fendi Peekaboo tote

Saint Laurent Monogrammed Kate shoulder bag

Givenchy Medium Antigona bag

Im a huge fan of across body bags, being a mum they are so handy to use on a daily basis alongside my over flowing baby bag. I recently bought a Louis Vuitton one which I absolutely love, its the perfect size, has compartments which I love and so light carry. The Chloe Drew I’ve had my eye on for a while, I’ve not bought one yet because I wasn’t sure if it was worth the investment, but I’m sure it is now as its been around for a while. Its a double whammy of a bag as you can wear in the day as an across the body bag and then over your shoulder for the evening.

I also love a good tote bag, and the Givenchy Antigona and the Fendi Peekaboo are perfect for everyday use, good size, roomy and beautiful to look at. The difference in price is quite high, but in my opinion both are investment pieces and can easily take you from day to night.

I don’t own many evening bags, so I definitely want to add a few more to my collection and to be the epitome of class is a Dior bag, I already have Lady Dior, but the Diorama is definitely next on my list. it can be worn as a day bag, but to me its to delicate, much like the Chanel Classic Flap to wear every day, these are special bags and should looked after. Next up is the Saint Laurent Kate tassel bag, this bag is such a cute and fun bag and definitely a must have as a evening.

Hope this has been a fun and inspiring post and remember a girl can always dream!

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Hubby’s Birthday Dinner

Hey guys, hope you have all had a lovely Bank holiday weekend. Welcome to my first ever outfit post, will keep this short and sweet on what I wore for my husbands birthday dinner at Roka Canary Wharf.

Apologies for the bad pictures, I completely forgot to take them until we got there and it was already dark!!! I like to plan my outfits before hand and I always choose my shoes and handbag before anything else and style my outfit around them.

I started off with quite a smart outfit, leather look culottes, pink blouse with a frill going down the middle, and then I decided to go a little casual and add a leather jacket(I have linked something similar), kept the outfit a little fun and edgy. I accessorised with my Gucci Dionysus shoulder bag and my Manolo Blahnik shoes, first time wearing these shoes, and I won’t lie they are the most comfortable shoes I have ever worn.

Hope you enjoyed this post and please let me know what you think in the comments below.

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Pink for Spring

Im not usually a colour kind of girl, even in the spring and summer seasons. I tend to stick to more neutral and classic colours, play it safe as I like my wardrobe to be more classic rather than trendy. However, I do make the exception when it comes to the colour pink, be it blush pink or fushcia, I can’t get enough of the colour. Just how magpies are drawn to shiny things, I’m drawn to the colour pink, its always been my colour, my bedroom as a teenager was actually pink at some point, sad I know!

So as pink seems to be the colour of spring this year, I thought I would share with you some of my favourite pink pieces I have in my wardrobe right now and how I would style them. some of these pieces are new and some a little old, so I will try and link the actual item or something similar.

This mini Gucci GG Marmont bag is a new addition to my bag collection, its official colour is Nude, but it could also pass for a blush pink colour. Its a nice smooth, almost matte leather, with antique hardware and a chain shoulder strap. This bag is has a more dressy feel to it, I think because of the chain detail and the antique hardware. It can be worn across the body for a more casual look, but being the mini version you can’t fit an awful lot in it, perhaps a card holder, small set of keys, a lipstick and a few more small bits. You can also definitely use it as an evening bag and wear it on your shoulder.

I actually bought this beautiful blush pink leather biker jacket from All Saints last summer, so the one I have linked is a slighter lighter colour. I was pregnant at the time so had no intention of wearing it anytime soon, but as soon as I saw it I knew had to have it, I have weak spot for All Saints leather jackets. Who knew it would would still be on trend the next year. The leather is so soft, almost buttery and the silver hardware goes beautifully with the colour. I have worn this with light colour jeans, a white or grey top and loafers or white converse and recently I have teamed it with a more smarter outfit and it went perfectly. To be honest I don’t think there are any given rules when it comes to leather jackets, to me they go with anything, so have a play about.

My favourite piece of clothing to wear at the moment is the hoodie, I don’t care if it makes me look like I’m 16 years old, they are so comfy and easy to style, and of course my colour choice had to be this magenta pink. This particular one is from Topshop, but I have seen many on the high street, either in a oversized version like this one or a slighted fitted version. I have styled this with skinny jeans, both light and dark and converse, also with boyfriend jeans that are slighted fitted, being petite I didn’t want to wear everything oversized.

This top combines two trends in one for this season, pink and fluted arms. This was a bargain from Topshop, managed to get it in the sale, so I was very happy. Unfortunately this one has sold out online so I have linked one similar, you might still find it in store as the sales are still on. I have styled this embellished jeans and nude pumps for an evening look, but can easily be worn casually with plain jeans and flat pumps or even some converse.

Go and have play around with pink, even if its not your colour, for spring it will just give your wardrobe a small injection of colour and romance!

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My first designer clothing purchase

I don’t really feel that designer clothing is an investment, like I do with shoes and handbags. For me clothing is too seasonal, trends come and go and change so often that its not worth buying such expensive pieces when you can buy them for a fraction of the price on the high street. However, on this occasion I did make an exception, and why did I do this? I’ll tell you why, because it was a Burberry Trench coat that I have been wanting for while now and I have always had second thoughts, as it is a very expensive purchase for me clothing wise.

It took a lot of research and trying on before I came to decision on which one to get, because I am very fussy when it come to style and fitting on my petite frame. For such an expensive piece I didn’t want to make a mistake and regret my purchase. I looked online first to see how many different styles and colours were available, and wow it was so overwhelming, because there were so many to chose from, my head was spinning. I soon realised that there are seasonal trench coats and there are the classic ones that they sell all year round, it was one of the classics that I wanted. So I narrowed down my search to the style and colour that I wanted and headed off into London to try it on in store. I like doing this with shoes and handbags too, I don’t like wasting time and I like to know everything I can find out about the item before I buy it.

I realised that designer clothing either come up too big on me or too small. I tried on a few styles including the new fit the Chelsea, this one was a more fitted and narrower style and did not fit me at all, the size 8 was too small and and the size 10 was too big. Then I tried on the Sandringham, still fitted but as narrow as the Chelsea, and this one fitted like a glove, I was so delighted. But now the problem was what colour!!!!! if you know me I love black, my whole wardrobe is practically black and neutral colours scare me. However, in a trench coat a neutral colour looks great, so I tried on the honey beige colour, this looked great and I fell in love, but I soon realised that this colour and being a mother just did not go and so I tried on the black. Yes I know its boring, but it looked great too and black goes with everything is a classic colour. So after a lot of thinking and few cans of coke later, I had made my decision, and I decided to go with the Sandringham in black in a size 8. I won’t lie, for a few moments I felt a little sick, but that passed, because I was now a proud owner of my first ever Burberry trench coat. Haven’t worn it yet, but I do I will definitely show you guys I styled it.

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