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Showing posts with label Style. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Style. Show all posts

24 Jun 2015

Summer Brights with Fatface

When I was approached by Fatface to style a look from their South Coast Brights collection, I was so pleased.  I love their relaxed chic look, it is so easy to wear and I have always found the quality to be excellent.  I used to be into the surf scene when I was growing up in a English Seaside Town, hence the wave tattoo I have around my right hand ring finger.  Fatface was, and still is, a store I go and have a look through for holiday clothes each year.

Cardigan - Annie by Fatface, Cropped Chinos by Fatface, Striped Top by H&M,  Navy Vest by La Redoute,  Lets not talk about the shoes.
I opted for some classic navy chinos and a pretty corla cardigan to set the look off.

I need to mention how happy I am with the Navy Crop Chinos.  They are gorgeous, the fabric feels so soft.  I got them one size up from my usual size (so a 16 instead of my usual 14) as I read they can come in a little small, and I wanted a more slouchy look. The fabric is excellent quality, it is a super soft cotton twill and the colour is a lovely deep navy (take note Very, they is what navy should be!)  These will be perfect for plane journeys, where you want to look tidy but still be comfy.  They will also allow me to not freeze whilst I get to the airport here, nor boil when I get to my destination.

The trousers have 2 side pockets which manage to do the impossible and be functional without adding bulk.  The cut is very flattering for those of us with big hips and smaller waist ,as the tailoring is spot-on and the waist fits beautifully (thank you, who ever designed these,  I won't need a belt for once)

The general advice for those of us with large hips is to not wear cropped trousers, as they can make you look wider by cutting off your legs half way down.  I have to add a caveat to this, which is if you are tall and have long legs and a short body, then it can help lengthen your torso which is a good thing.  I need to wear a top of a similar colour or one that finish past my widest point or they really do like me look very pear shaped, but overall, I find capri's to be a much safer option than shorts, which could not look worse on me ( I still have nightmares about wearing them in PE.)


I love the Neon trend but my skin is a little too pink to be able to wear very warm pinks. The Annie Cardigan in Corabelle is a pretty bright coral which bizarrely is a cool coral and so suits those of us with pink undertones. It is so pretty, and a great way to add some femininity and a pop of colour to your look. I like the pointelle detail (apparently that is what the patterns of holes is called) as it stops it from being just another cardie and makes it more delicate.  It's 100% cotton so ideal on hot summer days when you want to hide your arms but not get too hot and sticky.  Another point I must note is that the v-neck is well designed to not expose to much or make you feel too grandmotherly.

I paired the outfit with a pair of seriously old tan wedges that frankly have seen better days.  I am finding it such a struggle to find a pair of tan wedges in my size that aren't too high so I can wear them on a daily basis.  I painted my nails in a very unwise navy nail polish with a gold tips, this will be a real pain to remove as glitter polish is always hard and dark blue will stain. Anyway enough of the bad,  I think coral, navy and gold is such a classic colour combination and I will be wearing a lot more of it.

Navy Top by La Redoute, Navy Chinos by Fatface, Nail varnish Betty Blues by No7 & Revlon Sequins

I will get so much wear out of both these pieces.  The cardie can be worn with an all black outfit to give it a lift or with a white sun dress. The crop chinos are such a summer staple that I will probably wear them far more than is judicious.

I am really happy with both of these items and will definitely be making a stop in Fatface at Gatwick on my next holiday to check out some more of their items.  If you, like me, live quite far from the nearest shop here is their new arrivals page.

N.B. I must mention that writing this post make me laugh as I have notoriously chubby cheeks and so the irony of doing a post for Fatface is not lost on me :)

*Sample provided by Fatface for review purposes

30 Oct 2014

How to Wear Ankle Boots with Curves - Lotus Teagan

When the lovely people over at Lotus offered me the chance to try some of their shoes, I obviously snapped them up.  I decided to try something slightly outside of my comfort zone as I live in knee high boots in Winter and so I opted for these gorgeous ankle boots.  They are called Teagan and are of such high quality for the £75 they retail at.  The thing that impressed me most, was the comfort as I spend nearly all day on my feet (well except for when I'm blogging) and these have lovely padded insoles and a sensible stacked heel.  They have a normal leather front and then a suede snakeskin effect back which makes them more original than most ankle boots out there.  I also really liked to leather pull, on the zip which makes them a doodle to put on.


Lotus Teagan Boots £75

I figured it would be too easy to just put these on with some bootcut jeans, as all you would see was the front, so I decided to try a different approach.  I love the looks I see on Pinterest with ankle boots paired with dresses, but as usual this is a look that works best on those with a slimmer frame.  So I decided to adapt it slightly by matching the colour of the tights to the boots and skirt so that it slimmed my silhouette but still gave me a slightly more edgy look than usual.  To be honest edgy would never be a word you would associate with my style, I play it safe every time.

Here I wore them with a Poncho, ribbed black skirt and tights.  I would wear this outfit regularly as it is so comfy and versatile, I could wear this for most anything.

ankle-boots-with curves

I also gave the ankle boot, cosy sock and tights look a go, I'm still not sure on this... but I figured it was worth a try.


I then tried a more dressed up look.  I have a on a Ted Baker coat that is several seasons old and was originally red, but I dyed it black.  I promise I am wearing a skirt beneath the coat, contrary to photographic evidence.

ankle-boots-with curves


Overall I am really impressed by the boots, less so my styling of them, but I reckon with a bit of practise I may be able to give wearing ankle boots without trousers a go.  I liked that as a size 8/9 UK these fit me with ease, which I would say means they are pretty true to size, towards slightly generous, so if you like to wear socks under your boots then you would be able to do this with Lotus shoes. If you fancy taking a look at their range this is the site that I got them from, I also really liked these boots, which are more biker-y.


To keep up with all my latest attempts at making myself look presentable, feel free to sign up with Bloglovin here.

5 Sep 2014

Starting a New Exercise Routine - Running

September is my favourite time of year, new beginnings, fresh starts and the children go back to school, so I can actually get some stuff done.

I have decided to change my exercise routine from Zumba to running.  The two main reasons for this are timing of the classes and the cost.  The Zumba classes only run on an evening and by 6:30 I have no motivation left to go exercise.  I am very lucky in that my sons Nursery is opposite a beautiful big flat rugby pitch/village green with lovely views, and so I decided to make use of this free facility and start to run there.

Chipstead Meads
Now before you start having images of my sprinting round the field like a supercharged gazelle, I think I need to create a more honest picture for your head.  I haven't run for about 10 years and so my stamina is pants.  I have therefore decided to try the 5k Runner app, which has come highly recommended from a few friends who have begun running again.  It costs £1.99 for the full version, which you will need if you want to get past week two, but this is a bargain as Zumba costs me £5 a pop.

Each session gets gradually harder, you start off just running 1 minute at a time, then by week 4 you are doing 5 minutes runs interspersed with walking and then by week 8 a full 35 minute run.

Motivation Tips

New Kit
There is nothing like getting some new threads to make you feel ready for the task.  I am usually pretty good at not over buying in anticipation of my new found love of any sport.  I learnt my lesson many moons ago after several over-eager purchases (hello heart rate monitor and criminally expensive running shoes, that I just use to garden in).  But I did treat myself to some new exercise leggings, as I only have 1 pair.  I got these rather generic yet very flattering ones from Very.  They were just £22.  I have pretty generous thighs and they even make my thighs look presentable.

I wear Adidas Duramo trainers, I love all the Neon Nikes but as I have large feet, they just call attention to this.  So I have some minimal black ones.  I also have some Saucony white ones, but they look so large it puts me off wearing them.

I also wear a long line vest as I try to hide my thighs bum as much as possible (not fooling anyone)  I have this one and this, which I love, from NUX, it was only £12 in TK Maxx.  I must also mention the topic of sports bras, I use a Shock Absorber one that I have had for 3 years now and it is still going strong.  It cost about £35, so it wasn't cheap, but it is the best one I have ever owned.  It is supremely comfy, keeps everything in place and is actually quite cute in it's own right.

I have on different workout trousers in this pic.

Write a list of why you are doing it
Here's mine;
  1. To bring calm - I always feel much happier after I workout
  2. Space outside on my own- space to think, and plot and ruminate
  3. To maintain my weight, possibly loose some more
  4. For a sense of achievement.
  5. To set a good example for my kids
  6. To improve my skin, I find that exercise gives the best youthful glow
  7. To use my body for what it was built for
  8. To boost my metabolism
  9. To fight off ageing - I know that is not possible, but a reduction would do
  10. To help reduce back problems

Is anyone else starting a back-to-school workout routine, or got any tips for running?

4 Jun 2014

Tropical Print Skirt with Curves and Not Being 20!

I love all the statement skirts floating around Pinterest and the shops at the moment but the look seems (as per usual) better suited to younger, slimmer girls than me.

Now, not being one to be easily defeated I saw this beautiful AX Paris tropical print skirt on Very (for just £22!) and decided I would give it a go.  I had images of me floating around Spain this Summer all bronzed glossy limbs and swishy hair.  As delivery is free if you use Collect +, I figured I would have nothing to loose.  I ordered it and when it arrived I really liked it, but... not with just a cami as they are generally worn.


I think my skin has got more and more uneven as I have gotten older.  I now see why tights are so popular with the 40+ crowd.  So I donned a nice thick pair of black opaques and a cardie (see I am so getting middle aged) and here is the look I came up with.   I have left the cami untucked as I have a short top half of my body, which looks really strange if I tuck things in or overemphasise my waist with a belt.  I think it looks fashionable without being mutton dressed as lamb, I hope!


I accessorised it with my trusty antique gold and fluro necklace from New Look, a pair of cute earrings from Accessorise (my favourite shop ever for earrings) and Tanya Burr Nail Varnish in Bright and Early.  Ok, I didn't actually get as far as painting my nails yet, as I have a nursery pickup to do in half an hour, but I will when I wear this out on a date night with The Husband. No really I will, maybe...if I can be bothered.

22 May 2014

White Jeans & Curves + £50 Joe Browns Voucher Giveaway

The lovely people at Joe Browns offered me a a chance for us to work together, and seen as I have had a go at trying out OOTD posts I figured I would try this. I have been wanting to do a white jeans post for a while as I love trying out looks that shouldn't work but do.  I blame Kim Kardashian and J-Lo for this one.  They make white jeans look great even with a more ample behind.

Now I am a UK size 14 (US 10) so not exactly skinny, which means that the look needs to be adapted slightly for my figure.  The key to it working on a fuller figure seems to be to cover your bum, so I started by layering.  The 2 looks I have created both have either a white longline vest (from Primark £3) to help conceal my less than tiny thighs a little. I did some other looks with a lack vest that worked equally well too.  I think that also having a longer length jean is also important.  I reckon the heels are down to personal preference (mine being, at all times, no matter what)

Here is my preppy take on the white jeans look.


Joe Browns very kindly sent me these lovely crisp white skinny jeans (£29.99) and as an extra bonus a co-ordinating nautical bag £24.99.  So I rummaged in my wardrobe and came out with these 2 looks.  I figured mono-chrome has to be the way to go as the bag is just perfect as a balance, it even comes with the cute floral red scarf which lends the look a bit of colour.  The bag is really spacious and pretty large, (which is good for balancing a larger frame) I have used it nearly every day as it goes with most things in my wardrobe.

The jeans are a medium weight denim so they should be suitable for evening wear on holiday in summer yet also fine in winter with boots, if I manage to keep them stain-free that long! I also like that they are pretty long, I am 5'7" and so this is an ideal length for me.

Must remember to buy radiator cover for dressing room!

I am really happy I had the nerve to try this look out as I think it is a really easy, timeless look and would suit most body shapes and ages. I'm not sure it is one for the school run, unless you are Anthea Turner style tidy, but it would be great for sightseeing.

Joe Browns have also very generously offered a £50 voucher as a giveaway prize so if you want to try out this look or have your eye on something else from their range, this is perfect.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

1 May 2014

OOTD- School Run Style Raining

After yesterday's post that went better than I thought, I figured I would try again.

Here is todays offering.  It's chucking it down here so no cute spring looks for me.


Skinny Jeans from Next (again! they do long length jeans at a reasonable price) here £28

Black long length vest top - underneath from ebay similar to this £5

Navy slash neck 3/4 sleeve loose t-shirt from La Redoute, I have this in black and white too, as it is such an easy shape to wear, no longer available in navy but here it is anyway £17

Boots from Sole Diva £75, so hard to get shoes in a size 9.  I wear these far too much as they are flat and super comfy.  They are far too big in the calf for me as they are designed for proper plus size not just a size 14 but I still adore them.

Scarf from Peacocks (I think) it was about £6

Nail varnish - still yesterdays MUA Pistachio Ice Cream , need to change it as it is on it's third day but too lazy after last nights after Zumba.

30 Apr 2014

OOTD - Everyday School Run Look

This is my first ever outfit of the day post.  You can tell this by the fact that I accidentally chopped off my feet in the picture and the exquisite awkwardness of my posing.  I have included a picture of the shoes later, I assure they they looked AMAZING!

This just an everyday outfit for me, flats (£26), jeans (£26) and a t-shirt (£12) all from Next (how did that happen, I don't buy that much from there!) My nail varnish is MUA Pistachio Ice Cream which was a bargain-tastic £1 and perfectly wearable if teamed with a decent base and top coat.

The necklace is new and it from Etsy, I am so happy with this and another one I bought, they are
ideal for dressing up what is essentially a dull outfit.

Well there we go, I did it.  Still not delighted by the picture but I thought it was unfair to keep yacking on about curvy style and not post pictures of me and my various misguided attempts.

29 Apr 2014

April Favourites


Nails -

Such an easy to wear colour that is good on both my feet and my hands.  I wanted something for everyday wear but that was still springlike and on trend.  It goes on well, I love the brush, it is slightly curved which makes application easier.  It only needs 2 coats to look opaque.  I wear it with a base coat and Seche Vite on top (as always.)  I can’t say it has amazing staying power but nothing, and I mean nothing, even shellac, stays longer than 48hrs on my poor nails.

Hair -

Clairol Shimmer Lights.

I am a DIY hair stylist and only visit a salon every 4-6 months when I really have to.  This means that I need to be able to keep my colour fresh. This is my favourite shampoo to stop an attack of the gingers happening.  It cools down the tome of you hair and I guess cleans it as well.  I don’t use this every time I wash my hair, more like once or twice a week.  I bought it off Amazon for around £10 after it being recommended by Elle from Elle Bangs, who does amazing home hairstyling videos, check her out here.  

Babyliss Curling Wand

I watched Tanya Burr's great video on giving your hair beachy curls and was inspired by how easy she made it look.  So I rushed upstairs to do my own poor attempt.  It has a taken a few attempts to get better at it, and it doesn’t look even vaguely like hers but here is the result on my shoulder length hair. Not v beachy but it has more body!


This was just £2.50 in Superdrug for 400ml.  It is a repurchase but they have changed the name and packaging slightly, seems to be the same product though.  I like this as it is silicone free so no nasty build up, but it still gives "slip" so I can use it to comb through my wet hair after shampooing and not end up with a tangly mess.  It is also pretty lightweight so doesn't weigh my super-fine hair down.

Another repurchase, you only need a tiny amount of this to wash your hair so a bottle lasts a long time (a couple of months or so) This leaves me hair super clean and light feeling plus it smells lovely too.  This is my everyday shampoo of choice and has been for about a year now.

Makeup -


I have returned to my favourite old school mascara after month of using Maybelline The Falsies.  I was getting annoyed at how clumpy The Falsies gets after just a week or 2 and so grabbed an old back up (waterproof) mascara out of my reserve drawer and was so impressed.  How could I have swapped away from this.  It lasts all day especially on my lower lashes and the small head makes it easy to apply there too. I got my new one from Fragrance Direct for just £6.99 inc P&P- which is an amazing saving when you bear in mind it usually costs £10.99, I think this is because they have updated the packaging.

Again a forgotten gem, I tried using these as I noticed my lashes have started to loose their natural curl, I have no idea why, I blame my age.  Anyhoo, I dug these out from the back of my make up drawer and applied, TaDa! curly long lashes.  I tried using the hairdryer to warm them this morning too, and they are now super curly.  You need to be careful to just warm the curved section though as you can burn your cheek where they rest while they curl otherwise.  

Clothes -

Jewelled Flat Sandals (see pic above)

I have been searching for a pair of these I like for ages. I wanted something I could wear at weddings and the like for when your heels become unbearable yet you don't want to resort to flip flops, I thought they would be good with a maxi dress too.  I like the neutral colour paltette as they should go with anything.  These ones are from next and were £36 which I thought was a fair price, they did take 6 weeks to order in though (probably because of my enormous feet)

These were another Next purchase that again I had to wait for (damn modern life and it's inability to teach us delayed gratification.)  I like these as the wedge is quite thin at the back and the ankle strap is velcro, so easy to get on and off when doing the school run.  I love wedges and I reckon over 60% of my shoes come with these heels.  They look really good quality and more expensive than the £45 I paid for them.

New Necklace from New Look (see pic above)

A bargain find (£7.99) while scouring New Look for a non-revolting print skirt.  I grabbed this as it will go with the majority of clothes in my wardrobe, I love the aged gold colour and neon accents that make it more current.

Book -

I am currently reading Eat Move Sleep: Tom Rath

I needed something to encourage me to eat more healthily, and this has done the job.  The man who wrote this suffers from a rare genetic condition that predisposes him to tumours that can turn cancerous, these tumours are a constant risk and have been since he was a teenager, at any time he is usually monitoring more than 1 tumor and trying to keep his risk down from developing more.  This book is a collection of the steps he is taking to reduce his overall risk of cancer and is full of useful practical advice not endless claptrap about Soya, Hemp Seeds and other faddy ideas. 

28 Apr 2014

Style Inspiration for Curvy Ladies - Curvspo!

If like me, you struggle with your size and shape, I have put together a list of things I know help me feel good in my own body.    I have had enough male attention to know I'm not unattractive but that is not what I see when I compare myself to the mass media, where the message is skinny is beautiful no ifs, no buts.  I am a UK size 14 so US 10 and 5'7" so although I am not especially large, I am hardly what you would call slender either.

Luckily some great movements have sprung up online that celebrate a bit of body diversity and there is one for everyone.  Whether your super tall, or petite, curvy or any other body type at all, there is a Pinterest board or Tumblr for you.  I like these boards as they show me other women looking amazing and being happy.  I love the style inspiration ideas, about how to adapt runway fashion for normal people's bodies.


I'm not encouraging people to be overweight as I have lost weight when my health required it, but I also think there is a lot to be said for less body negativity.  Here are my top tips for gaining some pride in your figure and carrying yourself with confidence.

1) Sign up to some curvy blogs, Pinterest boards or Tumblrs.

Use your social media to keep a stream of images of more realistic women in your timeline.  If your Blogglovin feed, Facebook time line and Pinterest boards are full of women who look nothing like you, then change that. See the end of the post of ideas.

2) Find Celebs and Models whose body shape is similar and whose look you admire.  

I use these women as benchmarks of beauty instead of those who have NOTHING in common with me.  Again see below for my favourites.

3) Know your strengths

Everyone has things that are good about their body, it could be long legs, a petite derrière, shapely calves, big bouncy hair, cute feet, long strong nails, small waist, a flat stomach or a great bust.  Whatever it may be, celebrate the good, mask the bad.

4) Spend some time pampering

If you had the figure of a model you would take the time to exfoliate and moisture your skin, paint your toe nails and wear pretty underwear.  The further away from the accepted notion of beauty you are, the more important grooming becomes IMHO.

5) Learn what works for you

Find pictures of girls with your figure and see what they look good in, then shamelessly copy.  Don't do this with your friends looks though as they are liable to get pissed off, but with perfect strangers, pay homage.

Heres some inspiration to start you off if you need a bit of body positivity.


Style Inspiration for Curvy Women
Kajora - Curvy Style
Curvy Style Icons


Curve Appeal - This tumblr is great as you can search my size or measurements to get images of people like you.


Right to Left - Lou Hay Hay - Style Me Curvy - Girl with Curves

Lou Hay Hay - probably a size 12 maybe 14 if she is tall, and she looks amazing, UK based.
Style Me Curvy - a size 16 UK based blogger and model, great looks
Girl with Curves - Tanesha is one of the big guns in this field, from Silicon Valley with a degree from Berkley this is a lady with brains, style and beauty.


These are the celebs that have similar height, weight or size to me, yours would obviously be different.

  • Khloe Kardashian - 5'11" - 12st fluctuates between a UK 12 and 14
  • Christina Hendricks - 5'7" - 12st US 14 so UK 18
  • Sara Ramirez - 5'8" US size 12 so UK 16
  • Nigella - 5'7" UK size 12-16


  • Bree Waren - 5'11" UK size 14 
  • Gina Swire - 5'9" UK size 16
  • curvy-models

Hopefully this helps people realise that you can look good at any size, even supposedly skinny women still need airbrushing teams of hairdressers, stylists and makeup artists to look the way they do in magazines. 

3 Mar 2013

How To Layer Bracelets

How do you layer bracelets, without it looking over done? You want to achieve the bohemian feel without it looking like your child got all creative in your jewelry box.

This is definitely an art worth mastering, it can lend a great relaxed luxe edge to an outfit, and looks great with simple pieces like a plain black sheath dress. It is also a great way to add a new look to a much worn outfit without having to spend any money. Just have a good rummage around your jewelry drawer and then start seeing which ones look good together. With clothing it has taken me ages to learn to layer effectively and I still doubt that I get it right all the time.  With jewelry it is a bit easier, for every rule, I can find an example of it being broken and still looking great. Here is my attempt at trying to bring some order to the chaos.

  • Try use complementary hues - by this I mean go pastel, or go bright.  You could go shades of blue or pinks (think ombre) 
  • Mix larger more statement pieces with dainty smaller pieces. 
  • I say mix metals, my personal everyday bevy of bracelets is predominately white metal, but I have no qualms with bringing some gold to the table. 
  • Throw in a pop of colour, Find something that works with your outfit and your colouring, it could either matchs or contrast. I like my bracelt stack to complement my nail varnish.
  • Try to keep other accessories to minimum.
  • Layer just use one arm, double wrist layering is very hard to pull off
  • Feel free to add your watch, This is a great chance to get those watches you don't usually wear out of the drawer and get an airing.

26 Nov 2012

My Style Role Models

When I am lacking in inspiration for getting dressed I check out some of my favourite celebrities.  I love Olivia Palermo and Miranda Kerr's looks, but I will NEVER be that slim, I wouldn't have the endless self control required. I like women who have curves, it looks so glamorous and decadent and is actually acheivable.

Clemence Posey aged 29 
Better known as Fleur Delacoeur in Harry Potter or Eva in Gossip Girl. She is not a conventional beauty but I think that actually adds to her charm.


Marion Cotillard aged 37 
Oscar Winner , best known as Miranda in the Dark Knight Rising, Mal in Inception and Edith Piaf in La Vie en Rose. She has such a natural style and an intelligent face.


Kate Winslet - I'm not sure there is any point introducing her.  She is another Oscar winner who lends more to her roles than just her beauty.

Holly Willoughby - She is a British daytime TV presenter who has a very classic style and always looks pulled together even though she is a mother of two.


Kelly Brook - What she lacks in brains she makes up for in a beautiful feminine body.  She has good style too. she knows what works on her and sticks with it.


Have I missed anyone who's got curves and great style? Who inspires you?


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