Sunday, 17 July 2016

The Patterned Bomber Jacket




Black & Red Printed Bomber Jacket: Zara
Cream Camisole: Topshop
Pinstripe Mensy Trousers: Topshop
Leopard Print Sliders: Next
Verity Backpack: Whistles
Pendant Necklace: Monica Vinader
Rose Gold Watch: Olivia Burton

Well hello sunny Sunday! I'm feeling a touch bleary after devouring two Jamaican mojitos on date night, we went to Reds BBQ and it was super tasty (I may have consumed a donut burger) then this morning I've battled with leftover mascara causing a serious case of bleary eyed syndrome. The Body Shop Camomile eye make-up remover won the battle in case you were wondering but it doesn't half impede my sight, like all eye make-up removers I try - if you know of one that doesn't do this I'm all ears. Today the curly haired tot and I are off to scout out the pop up Grey Suit Clay shop at Swallows & Damsons before meeting the girls for a late brunch. It's been forever since I've caught up with two of my favourite beauties so I'm looking forward to it. I'm even channeling Carrie Bradshaw after watching three Sex & The City episodes but more on that another day.

Todays look is the result of a throw-it-all on errand running outfit which can often go to the pits but I was pleasantly surprised as this came together pretty well. As you'll know if you're a regular around these parts I've never been one to shy away from clashing prints yet it's only recently the I realised that success lies within the colour palette - even though I'm sporting stripes, leopard print and a patterned bomber everything remains within the neutral family and I think it works. Now let's talk bomber jackets and how I now own three (oops) thanks to the Zara sale where I picked up this sports luxe one and a navy one which is reminiscent of jockeys silks meets Grease for just £23. I never normally find that much in the Zara sale but I was beyond chuffed with these finds, especially as I'd eyed up both pre sale. Another fairly recent addition to my wardrobe are these 'mensy' striped trousers, these are a little different to my usual skinny fit but I'm all about broadening my fashion horizons and I've been enjoying wearing these casually with a cami or tee tucked in with Converse or flat sandals like these leopard print sliders from Next. Next is one of my go tos for Sadie sized clothing but is never somewhere I give a second thought for my own clothing but after spotting these sliders on 101 Instagrams I had to get my own pair. I'd say they're a little too flat for long distance strolls but for popping here, there and everywhere they're perfect. 

Before I dash to dress bambino and head out I've got to give a mention to my Verity backpack which my mum and dad bought for my birthday. Since having Sadie I rarely switch up my day bag preferring to carry a frankly bland, personality diminishing changing bag but on this day I thought 'sod it' let's get something a little more me on the go. Verity came in more than handy as Sadie was having a carry-me-everywhere day so I quite enjoyed being hands free and not looking incredibly mumsy, something I think every mum fears the most and while I don't think I'll be carrying any Ellas Kitchen pouches in it anytime soon (canvas lining life) I'll certainly be switching my bags up more often.

What are you up to this Sunday? Do you dig bomber jackets too?
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Thursday, 14 July 2016

Planning Our New Kitchen

(L-R 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10)
It's finally time for us to put a new kitchen in our house and I couldn't be more excited/concerned for my bank balance but let's just forget about that for now because we're getting a new kitchen! Craig and I moved into our cottage almost three years ago and in that time we've firmly put our stamp on each room not to mention adding all of the essentials like new windows, doors, a damp proof course... We've done everything, except the kitchen and I’m keen to get my ‘we-completely-renovated-our-house’ badge so let’s get cracking.

Our current kitchen is frankly an eyesore and while is serves a purpose its certainly looking tired and don’t get me started on the world’s most pointless dishwasher or the corner cupboard which invites you to remove a shelf anytime you want to put anything in it – clearly the old owners/kitchen designers wanted to make our lives difficult but onwards and upwards. For our new look kitchen we’ve got our eye on sage green cupboards with wooden worktops, modern and minimalist isn’t really our style and we’re keen to create something that fits with the style of our cottage. With Craig and I both working in tiles its one part of the design that we’ve both had strong opinions on – I’m feeling white elongated brick tiles in a herringbone pattern in between the units while Craig fancies exposed bricks so we’re thinking of meshing the two looks together. For the floor however we’re both in agreement on this swoon worthy wood-effect tile (seen top right) which we’re hoping to run throughout our open plan downstairs to keep things cohesive. 

I’ve not thought too far ahead in terms of those all-important finishing touches but I do know that I’d love my botanical flower print on display, hanging lights, a touch of greenery to bring the outdoors in and the non-negotiable concrete topped Conker table from furniture genies Loaf which we fell head over heels for on our last London trip together. I’d love to add some of their bowls into the mix too as I’m an absolute fiend for imperfect, could-be-hand-thrown ceramics so it goes without saying that a little somethin’ somethin’ from grey suit clay will have to complete our kitchen round up. I’m all about supporting independents and this is one business I’m keen to own a piece from, pronto.

Now excuse me while I go sell my entire wardrobe on eBay in order to pay for it all...

What do you make of our kitchen plans? 

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Sunday, 10 July 2016

The Button Down Midi

Blue & White Stripe Knot Top: Zara
Tortoiseshell Sunglasses: Tom Ford
White Button Down Midi Skirt: Warehouse
Navy Track Top: Toyshop
Trina Sandals: Sam Edelman via Daniel Footwear
Hibiscus Blossom Bag: Mulberry
Oh Summer, I wish you'd make your mind up. This time last week the sunshine was absolutely glorious, everything felt fresh and new which gave me the perfect excuse to throw on some seasonally appropriate garms but what a difference six days make - the sodding rain is back with vengeance and I for one have seen enough precipitation to last a lifetime. Who's with me? This week has been a real mixed bag I've enjoyed a long couldn't-get-enough lunch with a great friend and my soon to be God son, I've caught up with my bud Scarlett and enjoyed a trip to Manchester but in true life fashion we've also endured great sadness this week as we said a heartbreaking farewell to our beautiful dog Kez.

Now I've never been a Debbie downer and I'm not going to become one now so let's talk about something a little more frivolous in the shape of clothes and where do I begin? The goes with everything striped top with tie detail reminiscent of tops my friends would sport as teenagers, the incredibly easy to wear, button down midi or the navy track top that gives any ensemble a sports luxe vibe. Throw all three pieces together and you've got an outfit that epitomises smart casual, my kinda look although granted probably a touch too jazzy for a family stroll. Props to my Blossom bag for being the necessary pop of colour in a sea of blue and white, it's literally the most perfect bag for carrying my essentials - a real novelty when you're used to holding everything but the kitchen sink in your baby bag. Finally I've got to say I loved my make-up last Sunday and it's all down to a sample of the liquid Becca shimmering skin perfector in moonstone, if you love a luminous base that makes yourself swit swoo then you need this in your make-up bag stat. Speaking of make-up bags I had to add two products to mine this weekend 'cos it'd be rude not to when you're in spitting distance of a Charlotte Tilbury counter (promise I never spit, it's gross). Keep your eyes on my Instagram to see a mini haul pronto.

I hope you're week hasn't included any sadness but in case it has just remember, tomorrow is a new day.

What do you make of my English Summer appropriate ensemble?
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Sunday, 3 July 2016

The Fool Proof Baby Sling


Bomber Jacket: Zara
Long Sleeve Breton Top: Hush
Relaxed Fit Jeans: New Look
Trina Sandals: Sam Edelman via Daniel Footwear
Baby Sling: Lifft Sling*
I was going to start this post by talking about my unruly mane but you know what, I really don't care. Looking at these pictures make me beam like you wouldn't believe and while my hair isn't quite perfect and my jeans a touch too baggy I'm having the best time, hands free discovering the world with my baby. I've always fancied being a sling wearing momma but after trying one with all of the buckles when Sadie was a few months old I was really put off. It took me an age to get her in it and when she was finally secure and I'd started pegging the washing out she had a full on meltdown, cue me trying to unfasten a thousand clips as fast as I could with a sobbing Sadie - I ended up feeding her with parts of the sling still attached to me! At that very moment I decided slings were not for me.

Enter the Lifft Sling, a continuous piece of material manufactured in Yorkshire that can be folded in half and placed over your head and shoulder, add a baby and you're off - it's that simple and there's not a buckle or clasp in sight. I've been testing the Lifft Sling, suitable from birth to 35lbs for the past month and must say I'm impressed - I love how it folds down into a small square so it doesn't take up too much precious real estate in my baby bag and how easy it is to switch from the pushchair to the sling at the first sound of a cry, even as a one year old Sadie loves nothing better than being picked up, especially while she's teething. Another real benefit for me personally is that the Lifft Sling has undergone biometrical testing to show it keeps your spine straight, spreading baby's weight evenly across your shoulder and back, encouraging good posture. My posture has definitely got worse since I had Sadie, partly down to breastfeeding so it's good to know this wondrous piece of machine washable cotton helps your stance too.

The only confusion I found with the Lifft Sling is sizing. If I was ordering direct from the online shop I'd of chosen a size 2 (UK size 10-12) but meeting the lovely Alex (half of the husband and wife Lifft Sling duo) for my personal fit consultation I was surprised to discover I was actually a size 1 (UK size 8-10) so in my experience I'd size down. That said team Lifft Sling are more than happy to exchange their slings until you feel you have the correct size for you and your baby, you can't say fairer than that. 

I'm so pleased to finally feel confident using a baby sling and I can't thank Alex enough for introducing me to the brand. My Lift Sling is the perfect addition to our baby carrying line up (we have the Uppababy Vista and Maclaren Techno XT) especially at a reasonable £49.95 which is a fraction of the price of some baby carriers on the market so if you're newb to the baby sling game or just fancy adding a fool proof take anywhere sling to your collection then the Lifft Sling is one to check out.


*PR Sample, all baby carrying thoughts my own.
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Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Pyjamas As Outerwear

Floral Pyjama Shirt: Topshop
Jamie Skinny Jeans: Topshop
Femi Leather Embellished Sandals: ASOS
Rose Gold Watch: Olivia Burton
This blog post should be titled spot-the-stains-my-baby-gets-on-me but that wouldn't be quite so reader friendly now would it? It's been far too long since I graced my little corner of the Internet and I've honestly missed bringing all the chat to Cagney and Lace but thanks to constant downpours and maybe a smidge of bad planning we are three weeks without content, apologies gang. Yesterday was Sadies first birthday, yes I really did just write those words. Craig and I can't believe that our baby girl has been with us for 365 days. It only feels like two moments ago since we welcomed her into this world and not a day's gone by where it hasn't been amazing, being a mum is the best and most rewarding thing I've ever done and I can't wait to continue watching Sadie grow.

Todays ensemble is the outfit I sported yesterday and the other day to work and when I say other day maybe I mean I wore this two days in a row, tell me I'm not the only one who does this? While I never seem to sport jeans on Cagney and Lace I can confirm they're on my pins nearly everyday especially these Jamie skinnies from Topshop. They fit like a glove, have a high enough rise to hide anything unsightly and they're the perfect ankle grazing leg length. As fast as these come out of the washing machine they're back on my derrière, no lie. While I adore skinny jeans (who doesn't?) I must confess I'm still on the hunt for the perfect straight leg jeans, any suggestions? 

Now you know I can't abstain from making clothing buys ever so it'll come as no surprise that I've added another two pieces to my wardrobe, first up is this pyjama inspired floral blouse. I'll level with you this is actually part of Topshops nightwear collection (I'm not the only one wearing it out) so not only was it a steal at £20 but it's possibly my wardrobe favourite right now. Just look at that print. Finally are these could-be-garish-but-I-absolutely-adore-them nude slider sandals, these would never have been a sandal I'd of chosen on my own but after spotting them on Jens Instagram I knew I had to have them and thanks to ASOS Premier they were with me the next day. These are beyond comfortable and I want to wear them with everything so fingers crossed you won't get sick of seeing them.

What have you been buying over the past few weeks? Do you enjoy the pyjama trend?
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Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Four Fail Safe Gifts For Fathers Day


Dads are a special breed, well they are to me anyway. I distinctly remember being asked to write about my hero at primary school and choosing my dad as my subject (sorry mum you're awesome too!) I've always thought my dad is the bees knees (he's just an all round good egg) so whenever Fathers Day comes knocking I like to spoil him, only trouble is he's a nightmare to buy for and he's never been one to hide his feelings! Enter my four fail safe gifts that mean I never have to endure a disappointed dad again, yes he really is that bad.

1. The luxe necessity - think the everyday item that he can’t be without and then up the ante, a Barbour tee instead of their usual Urban Outfitters pick or a pair of super cosy UGG slippers instead of their usual M&S ones. I actually got Craig this pair of Scuff slippers* from Amara (those guys know how to do luxe gifts) as an early Fathers Day gift from Sadie and I can confirm they feel like walking on clouds. Craig literally wears them from the moment he gets in from work until bed and I wear them most of the day (shhh!) The perfect Fathers Day gift? I think so.

2. That's entertainment - this might be an obvious one when it comes to buying for men but I think it's definitely one of the most fail safe gifts around. Think DVDs (The Revenant has just come out and if your dads anything like mine he’ll love this), boxsets, tickets to see his favourite comedian or a CD for his car will always go down a storm. Tell me I'm not the only one who still buys CDs?

3. The edible one - I’ve got two words that win my dad over every time, Hotel Chocolat. Those chocolate making wizards can do no wrong in my eyes and I don’t know anyone who wouldn’t love to be gifted a box. Fact.

4. The personal one - possibly my favourite type of gift to give but promise not to tell the others? Choose a simple brass or copper photo frame and fill it with a picture of you both together (go for throw back snaps for the extra cute factor) or try a humorous mug filled with their favourite tea/coffee/hot beverage of choice. Failing that anything monogrammed is always going to make the most memorable gift and I guarantee you won't see a disappointed face.

What's your fail safe gift when it comes to buying for the men in your life?


*These slippers were kindly sent to me by Amara, all cloud like thoughts my own.
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Monday, 30 May 2016

All Hail The Midi Dress


Louche Shanta Dress: JOY*
Frayed Crop Jacket: Hush
Willow Bag: Mulberry
Friendship Bracelet: Links of London
Ziggy Round Pendant Necklace: Monica Vinader
Trina Sandal: Sam Edelman via Daniel Footwear
Hold the phone, an outfit post without a stripe in sight - who am I? On a side note don't you think we should all say hold the phone more often? Thoughts in the comments please. With Bank Holiday weekend almost bidding it's final farewell (where is this year going?) I thought it was high time I brought you yesterdays rather glam outfit while sitting in a pair of joggers and a workout hoodie, I'm all about the juxtaposition don't you know. 

Yesterday Craig, Sadie and I headed off to my mum and dads for a family BBQ so I couldn't think of a better excuse to throw on my latest wardrobe addition. Say hello to my floral midi dress which is a dream for lazy occasion dressing and mums a like, double points if you're both. First let's talk about the beautiful flowery print, not only does it brighten your day but it's excellent for hiding food stains, have you ever eaten next to an eleven month baby before? Watch out for the hummus. Next is the length, a midi dress is the twenty something plus girls dream - it skims those areas you want to disguise, showcases your skinny ankles and there's no chance of any cheek being on show when you bend down to pick up your into-everything-baby. Finally the cami style top makes this dress appropriate for all of the occasions, dressed down with low sandals a la moi for a summer BBQ, sans shoes for a beach walk or add high heels and this dress is Summer wedding or races perfect. As Sheffield couldn't make its mind up weather wise I added my Chanel inspired frayed jacket to ward off the chill. Isn't she a beaut? A birthday gift well chosen, thank you mum and dad.

While tomorrow might be everyones Monday (yes I know it's actually Tuesday) I can't complain one jot as I'm off shopping with my mum because I'm craving more blue and white tops from Zara, this one is easily my most worn item in my wardrobe right now. My mission this week is to find a bunch of peonies, now before you call me a blogger cliche hear me out - they're not only the prettiest flower around but closed ivory ones featured in my wedding bouquet so I think I more than deserve an open posy. Right?

Do you have a penchant for peonies? What do you make of midis?

*I was kindly sent this dress by JOY, all midi love my own.
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