Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Fall Fashion 2006

I have a theory about the fashion trends of this season. The designers didn’t come up with anything new. No, what they did was all sit down together and watch ‘Let There Be Light’, episode 13 of season 6 of ‘Sex and the City’ and stole all of the outfits! In this one episode, Carrie can be seen wearing:
Ankle boots (in grey no less!)
A knitted cardi
A beret
Arm warmers
A plaid jacket
And she is seen layering too. All of which are big trends this season. Charlotte is seen in a very masculine shirt, tie & waistcoat combination and Samantha sports a bright yellow voluminous coat. Even the background was used for inspiration: when Carrie and Charlotte are in Barney’s, Charlotte blindfolded in an attempt to understand what it is like to be blind, the display behind her is houndstooth!
This can’t just be a coincidence, surely?!

Friday, October 27, 2006

Outfit: More Pink!

It’s casual Friday again and this week we’re doing a special one to raise money for Breast cancer Research everyone was encouraged to wear pink. My department is all male so needless to say, very few are participating in the pink thing, but I think I’m making up for them! I’m wearing:
Pink ribbed polo neck sweater – Next
Pink long sleeve t-shirt – Gap
Dark skinny jeans – Gap
Pink boots – Bertie (bought from BT2 in Dublin – see Monday’s entry for a picture)
I went over to the reception here and one of the ladies there said I am a style icon. Praise indeed!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Insolia In-Soles

Today I am testing out the new Insolia In-Soles that I bought from http://www.insolia.com/
They are small gel cushions (similar to Party Feet) but these go in the heel end of your shoe/boot and magically transfer your weight off the ball of your foot. The website says:

Solving the Problems of High Heels
§ Invented by
Dr. Dananberg to ease his patient's pain.
§ He determined that padding and cushioning don't reduce pressure - they only mask it briefly.
§ He discovered that shifting weight to the heel reduces the pressure and prevents the pain!
§ Insolia Inserts shift weight off your forefootand back onto your heels - where it belongs!
§ Comfortable high heels are now a reality,thanks to Insolia!
§ Insolia Inserts vanish in your shoes!
§ You can wear any style of high heel with Insolia!

I haven’t walk far in my boots yet, but just standing up in them feels different and more comfortable. The inserts come in 4 sizes and cost $8.90 for one pair and $17.80 for 3 pairs. Some shoes manufacturers have started manufacturing shoes with Insolia built in. In the UK this is just Marks and Spencer and DKNY so far, but surely others will catch on and follow suit as comfort will be improved no end.
And look, they're good for your posture too!

Outfit: Autumn Browns

Brown check wool skirt – Next
Beige cashmere sweater – United Colours of Benetton
White shirt – Topshop Tall range
Brown tights – Next
Brown boots – Faith

This Week I Will Be Mostly…

…wearing those pink round toe court toe shoes from Faith
…reading November’s Glamour magazine
…watching nothing, so far this week I’ve not been in to watch TV
…eating porridge with stewed apples
…shopping online

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Outfit: It's Freezing!

How cold would it like to be today?! I think the warm Autumn is over. It’s freezing cold outside today. Yes I am in the frozen North but still. And it’s raining. I am wearing much the same outfit as yesterday (which I never do, but I took the easy option last night so I wouldn’t have to change shoes or bag as I was busy) but have swapped the grey polo next for a bright pink one from Long Tall Sally that matches my shoes, and the socks are the ‘Long Cuffable Slouchable’ style from Sock Dreams that seem to be staying up better.

A Sensible Shoe Purchase

I am contemplating purchasing these boots. They are Doc Martens and are therefore very sensible purchase as I will be able to wear them for walks, and general purposes, as they will be very comfortable. But my young man is threatening to put me on a shoe-budget of £10 per month. I told him that didn’t scare me, I’d just go to Matalan, Primark and George more than I do now, and still be able to get a new pair each month for that price. He said that wasn’t the idea, I was supposed to save for quality and a good stout pair of shoes. So he should approve of these boots as they look very stout and as I recall, DM soles were resistant to everything – fire, petrol, oil and a list of other things.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Outfit: Shades of Grey

How many shades of grey can you wear at once? Well I’ve managed 4 today. With some pink shoes added for good measure.
Grey A-line skirt – Gap
Grey ribbed polo neck sweater – don’t know, the label is cut out, purchased from a chain store seconds shop
Grey chunky knit long cardigan – Warehouse (pictured)
Grey Super M long socks – Sock Dreams
Pink court shoes – Faith
Pink Birkin-esque bag - Next

Monday, October 23, 2006

Outfit: Pink Monday

Today I am wearing:
Black skirt with pink pin stripe, Oasis
Black ribbed Polo neck sweater, M&S
Black tights, M&S
These fabulous pink boots, Bertie (bought from BT2 in Dublin)

Friday, October 20, 2006

The Devil Wears Prada

I went to see this movie last night and it was completely fabulous! I’m not going to review it just yet as I am aware that it’s not been out that long and not everyone will have seen it so I don’t want to spoil it for anyone. Suffice to say that the opening scene shows a bunch of women getting dressed for work and putting on all manor of fantastic shoes. When I saw that I knew it was going to be my kind of movie. If you enjoyed Sex and the City, especially the episode at the end of season 4, ‘A Vogue Idea’ where Carrie starts work at Vogue magazine, you’ll love this movie. It’s funny, and fashionable, and I would definitely recommend it to anyone with an interest in fashion and glossy magazines.

Dorothy Perkins Has A Girls' Night In

Whilst at the mall yesterday I went into Dorothy Perkins as they were having a Girls’ Night In event. This involved free drinks of wine (or orange juice) and a free Cadbury’s flake (dark chocolate variety). Never one to pass up free chocolate I went inside. I filled out a form to win a trip to New York (never going to happen!) then made a donation to Breast Cancer Research and received a goodie bag in exchange containing:
250ml bottle of Garnier Fructis shampoo
250ml bottle of Garnier Summer Body lotion
Nivea lip gloss tube
L’Oreal Kiss Proof lipstick/lip gloss combo (I will be testing this out on my young man later on!)
‘Northern Lights’ by Nora Roberts paperback book (and it’s a hefty tome at 400-odd pages)
Ambi-Pure air freshening scented candle in a glass
Bag of Walkers Sensations Crisps – Lime & Thai Spice flavour
So it was well worth the trip out shopping! They were also offering 20% off everything in store and I tried a few things on but didn’t indulge in further purchases.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

This Week I Will Be Mostly...

…wearing my new chunky knit cardigan from Warehouse (still – I just love it!!)
…reading the new issue of Cosmopolitan magazine (must really find another book to read rather than all these magazines!)
…watching Neighbours – they brought Gail Robinson back, stroke of genius!
…eating baked potatoes – they’re cheap and filling
…shopping at Faith – there’s 20% off today online and in stores, and that’s on top of any sale reduction all ready made!


I’m lacking inspiration at the moment so over the next few days I’ll post a couple of items from each of my favourite shops. And I’ll start with Topshop. Topshop has come in for much criticism recently in the fashion blogs, be it for letting Kate Moss design a clothing line or its high prices. I have to agree with the high prices argument. Take a look at this blue coat for example. Yes it’s beautiful (and not such a strange texture as this picture shows, something strange happened to it when I saved it), but it’s 75% cotton, 25% polyamide and looks like it has cropped sleeves, yet still it’s £95! Now people, it’s almost Winter. In Britain. It’s going to get cold! I for one would certainly not consider spending that amount of money on a coat, in the Winter, that is not mostly made of wool. And I certainly wouldn’t spend that amount of money on a summer coat.
Secondly, we have this adorable little skirt. It’s a very reasonable £28, the sort of price you would expect to pay in Topshop. It’s from the Tall range but is also available in a regular length. It’s cute, it picks up on the plaid trend for this winter and would look great over thick tights with boots.
Yes the prices in Topshop have increased in some areas, but I will almost certainly continue to shop there as it’s one of the few places on the high street where I can find trousers long enough for me.

UPDATE: I went in to Topshop last night and saw this coat hung in the window display. The fabric feels like something my Grandma would have worn 20 years ago, and the one on display was covered in pulls.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Wardrobe Dilemma!

I’m going away this weekend. To the country. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m from the North and I love the country, but when it comes to wardrobe planning, I’m much better at city-wear. And I have a feeling Sunday may involve some kind of walking and it could be cold up on the hills. So what do I wear to look stylish? Saturday I have covered, it’s a wander round a seaside town with a friend, then a pub meal with my young man and the friend & her husband. So for the day it will be a denim skirt, flat suede boots, thick tights, sweater and warm jacket. For the evening I think a sweater dress will suffice as it’s a fairly casual place and is in the middle of nowhere. But for walking on Sunday? Help! Obviously it will have to incorporate sensible footwear, and probably jeans or other trousers and the same warm jacket, but that’s as far as I’ve got.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

More Musings on Jeans

Yes I love my jeans. But what I especially love at the moment is that in terms of style of jean, anything goes. I am an avid member of the Shiny Fashion forums and there is a thread on there at the moment discussing people’s preferences when it comes to jeans – skinny or bootcut, which do you prefer?
I was in Topshop on Saturday and saw two girls coming down the stairs. On was wearing skinny jeans tucked into boots and the other was wearing a flared style over boots. While they both looked fabulous, it struck me that the one in the skinny jeans looked more modern and currently stylish, but the one in the flared legs jeans looked classier. And there I think you have the definitive decision on jean shape. Although I love wearing skinny jeans over heels or tucked into boots, nothing beats a bootcut or flare over boots for class.
(These pictures are not the best illustration of this point – the one of the flared jeans is from the Gap website, showing their Long and Lean style, and the one of the skinnies is of my legs taken from a bad angle and making them look very short when I actually take a 36” inseam length.)

Monday, October 16, 2006

Bargain Bag!

I went into town on Saturday and got a bargain bag in New Look. It’s blue with a fold over top and a silver clasp, and has handles long enough to go on your shoulder. I saw it a few weeks ago but it was £25 and as I was buying my shoe boots at the time I decided not to splash out on the bag as well. So yesterday when I went in there were just 2 of the bags left and the price tag had been marked down to £15. ‘Result!’ I though and took it to the cash desk. When she scanned the barcode, the girl said it was now down to £5! Don’t you just love it when that happens! I’d show you a picture but there isn’t one on the website.

Friday, October 13, 2006


So I saw this Pucci-esque print dress in Dorothy Perkins on Tuesday and took it to try on. ‘Bit short’, I thought once it was on, and ‘shame as I love the print’. But then yesterday I took a look at the website and discovered that…it’s a tunic! No wonder it was short! However, this puts a whole new slant on things and I may have to go back tomorrow wearing suitable jeans and try it again over those. D’oh!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Outfit: Navy Suit

Today I am wearing a navy stripe trouser suit from Long Tall Sally, a turquoise sleeveless t-shirt from Dorothy Perkins, and these gorgeous navy patent shoes by Magrit. I feel very professional and business-like!

I felt very confident in that dress yesterday by the way, I think it is my new favourite item of clothing! Someone in my office said I was looking very smart in it, was I going for a job interview? I wasn’t, but it was a nice compliment all the same!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

This Week I Will Be Mostly...

…wearing dresses – sweater or wrap, either way I’m loving them!
…reading the November issue of Happy magazine
…watching What Not to Wear and Sex & The City DVDs
…eating those lovely little chocolate desserts that Cadbury’s make – a kind of think chocolate sauce with bits of chocolate/Buttons/Crunchie/Flake to tip in (yes I do love chocolate!)
…shopping at Dorothy Perkins

Houndstooth – Taking the Plunge

So I went for it and bought an item in Houndstooth (I think we’re supposed to call it dogtooth over here but I like houndstooth better). It’s this cute little top from Dorothy Perkins that came with a patent belt (so no need to buy one of those then!). I will be wearing it for work & play with a black skirt suit or black trousers. This should please my young man no end as although he is unlikely to like this top, he loves me in black trousers (we really should have me 10 years ago when all I ever wore to go out in was black trousers!).

Fall Fashion Wish List – Update

Right back in August when I started this blog, I posted a Fall Fashion Wish List and I just wanted to go back and see how I got on with it.

Sweater Dress (longer and thicker than the one I have, and roll neck) – Got 2, one roll neck and one in a thicker knit so that’s that one taken care of.
Navy Glitter Courts from Faith – never going to happen, they’re way too expensive. But look at the picture, aren’t they beautiful! – Went to Faith with the full intension of purchasing these shoes the other week and the 9 was sold out! Grrr!!
Huge (but inexpensive) smart bag – Dorothy Perkins have some nice ones but they’re red or white. I need brown or blue – Decided to go with the red one from Dorothy Perkins and also found a brown bag for £6 at Priceless Shoes – bargain!
Gloves – brown and blue to match my scarves – Don’t know about you but I think it’s been too warm still to even think about buying gloves. I’m sure the temperature will drop by the end of the month though and then I’ll be wishing I had some gloves already.

Outfit: I’m Wearing A Dress!

Actually, that’s not so surprising anymore as I have about 7 dresses in my wardrobe now, but a year or so ago it would have been a surprise to anyone who knows me as I didn’t own any! The wrap dress is from Dorothy Perkins and although the picture here is the one from their website, detailing the fabric and price correctly, the print is slightly different. The stripe illusion is vertical rather than horizontal as shown here. I have teamed it with black tights and red shoes, and put a white vest under it for the office as the wrap creates quite a low v. I will wear it on it’s own for a night out or social occasion though.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Outfit: Rainy Tuesday

White shirt with pearl buttons – Gap
Brown/beige/blue check skirt – Next
Brown sweater – Dunnes
Brown tights – Dorothy Perkins
Brown knee high boots – Nine West
The boots pictured are the ones I am wearing but mine are dark brown. I got them for £40 last year when Alders was closing down. The box says £135 on it. Didn’t know they came in red until I was looking for a picture of them. The red is lovely and I don’t have any knee high boots in red…

Monday, October 09, 2006

Vintage Skirt

I am always reading on other people’s blogs about cool things they have found whilst raiding their mother’s wardrobe. This is not really a possibility for me as my mother is considerably shorter than me, and a different shape with smaller feet. So ‘borrowing’ shoes is out and I didn’t think I would ever get any of her clothes handed down either. But on a trip home on Friday night, I went through the wardrobe in my old room and found this skirt. My mother gave it to me years ago and I have worn it a few times but I had totally forgotten about its existence. I’m not sure if the print is too much (it’s a bit darker than it looks in the picture) now though. It's truly vintage though, dating back to about 1975/76.
I also found a skirt of my own that I didn’t know I still had – it’s long and grey and knitted – perfect for this season.
Actually, now I think about it, I was once given another skirt that used to belong to mother. It was a houndstooth pencil skirt that would also have been perfect for this season but I have not seen it for years. I'm guessing it was given to charity at some point but I can't remember. I am fast learning never to throw out anything like that as it will always come back into fashion sometime.

Outfit: Monday in Autumn

Today I am wearing long brown shorts from H&M, a brown tank with striped shirt sleeves and collar attached from George, brown tights from Dorothy Perkins and those fabulous blue suede shoe boots from New Look.


On Thursday evening I went to ASDA and bought a v-neck sweater dress in black from the George range. I decided to eschew jeans for once and wear it on Saturday. The v is quite low so I wore it with a white vest underneath and changed the black belt that came with it for the teal/green skinny scarf I wore as a hair band on Friday. Scarves sure are a useful item to own. To hide my pasty legs I wore my think black socks from Sock Dreams, again pulling them right up to look like tights, and my teal boots. My kind brother-in-law lent me his camera on Saturday to take some shots of my shoe collection so more pictures will be appearing here this week.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Choosing An Outfit

When I’m picking an outfit I usually start with the shoes and work from there. My young man thinks this is bonkers but I have my reasons. Firstly, I am such a shoe addict that often there is a new or favourite pair that I am dying to wear (“you know I don’t play favourites with my shoes, but these were very special” – Carrie Bradshaw, ‘A Woman’s Right To Shoes’ SATC Season 6). Secondly, there is often the consideration of ‘how far do I have to walk today?’ This determines the height of the heel I can wear, thus limiting the shoe choice. One the heel height has been determined, only certain jeans/trousers can be paired with the chosen shoe, eg. some jeans are too long/short for the heel height. Then it’s a case of ‘what top goes with these trousers/jeans’ and so it goes on. Perhaps I am bonkers or do other people think like this?!

Outfit: Casual Friday

We are allowed to ‘dress down’ in my office on a Friday, which just means you are allowed to wear jeans on Fridays but not the rest of the week. So today I am wearing very scruffy jeans with a big flare from Topshop. I say scruffy because the legs are very frayed at the bottom due to being worn with trainers, they are faded, and thetop is frayed as there’s no waistband – no, not some weird quirk of mine chopping it off, I bought them like that! They have very long legs though enabling me to wear knee high brown boots with a stiletto heel from Faith underneath them. My top is a white long sleeve ‘Favourite T’ from Gap with a beige cashmere v neck sweater over the top from United Colours of Benetton. I have added a teal/green skinny scarf worn as a hair band. My hair needs washing but as I am having it cut this afternoon there was no point washing it this morning, hence the scarf to cover it up. My hair has become very long recently so I’m going to have quite a lot cut off and some shorter bits put in the front.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Insomnia: I Can't Get No Sleep!

I had real trouble getting to sleep last night. I think it was a combination of factors: I was out and drank 3 cups of fairly strong tea, then drove home and went straight to bed with no time to relax and unwind. Also, I had various outfit options running through my head, namely: what shall I wear on Friday for work followed by a hair appointment followed by tea with my parents followed by youth work. Getting up and writing down the combinations running through my head didn’t help, I couldn’t get settled. So in the end I had to resort to my failsafe getting to sleep trick: my Enya CD. I don’t know what it is about this music, perhaps it’s the calming chant-like singing and Celtic influences, but I guarantee you, play ‘The Best of Enya’ from track 7 (the earlier tracks are too well known and livelier) at a very low volume, lying in bed in the dark, and you will be asleep by the end of the disc.
As for my outfit for tomorrow? You’ll have to check back tomorrow to find out!

Outfit: Copying the River Island Advert

I have been seeing this picture everywhere since about July! It’s in every magazine; I’ve had at least 2 promotional booklets from said store containing the image. But it’s a good look and one I thought I’d copy today, using pieces I already have – none of which are from River Island.
Black shirt dress (skirt is much fuller than the one pictured) – George
Brown belt – Dorothy Perkins
Black shrug – so old I can’t remember where it’s from as I had to cut out the prickly label!
Black coat – H&M
Brown boots – Nine West (almost identical to the ones in this picture, I think that’s what made me look closely at it in the first place)
Brown bag - Priceless Shoes
Silver hoop earrings – Claire’s Accessories
Silver & diamante shoe necklace – Claire’s Accessories

Sock Dreams Socks

I wore my sock dreams socks out for the first time last night. It was the long, cuffable, scrunchable style in charcoal. I paired them with a denim mini skirt from Dorothy Perkins (from the Tall range so it’s a longer length mini, if such a thing can exist!) a pink sweater from Gap and my new pink Faith shoes. And I am pleased to report that the socks stayed up very well. I wore them pulled up as high as they can go to look like tights and it worked brilliantly. Under such a short skirt I would probably use suspenders next time, but really only for my own piece of mind so I know they’re not going to slip down. But under a longer length skirt they are fine worn this way on their own. I have yet to try them as slouchy socks, I think my thighs are too white and wobbly for that at the moment, but maybe if I use a tanning moisturiser on them for a few days and then I could be brave enough!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

This Week I Will Be Mostly...

…wearing my new chunky knit cardigan from Warehouse
…reading the ‘Instyle Secrets of Style’ book (and the new issue of Elle magazine)
…watching Hollyoaks, and episodes of ‘The Flying Doctors’ on video
…eating chocolate pancakes – something I discovered on holiday in Crete, just make pancakes and spread them with chocolate spread which will melt, roll and eat. Delicious!
…shopping at George and Matalan for that bargain fix
...listening to Radio 2 and the Proclaimers' Greatest Hits

PS. I intend making this a weekly feature so you all can get to know a bit more about me. Feel free to comment and tell me what you're mostly doing this week!

Autumn/Winter Wardrobe

I am very excited today as last night I switched over my clothes, putting away all my summer things and getting out my Autumn/Winter things. My flat is tiny so all my out of season things are stored in a huge metal trunk (that is covered with a throw and doubles as a table) that I had when I was at boarding school. The only trouble is that everything smells a bit musty for a while after I take it out of there! I love doing the seasonal change over as it’s like you’ve just got a whole load of new things and it hasn’t cost you a penny. So now I have loads of little tartan skirts to wear (including a genuine ‘made in Scotland’ kilt) – fashion follows me people(!) and my grey winter suit, polo neck sweaters, warm coats and jackets.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Outfit: Feeling Stylish

I feel very stylish today. I know it’s hard to judge without pictures (I will write to Santa and ask very nicely for a digital camera!) but tell me if you at least think this sounds stylish!
Black skirt suit with teal pin stripe – George @ ASDA
Black v-neck sweater – Dorothy Perkins
Black argyle tights – Boots (I think)
Teal mid-calf boots – Faith
Teal/green/turquoise zig-zag stripe skinny scarf – Per Una at Marks & Spencer


As you can see I have installed a hits counter on the bottom of this page. So I know folk are reading it, but please, leave me some comments when you visit! I ahve no idea what you think of my site unless you tell me so please, let me know!

Monday, October 02, 2006

My Outfit Today

Felt a bit daring this morning and so have teamed the new blue shoe-boots with shorts! I know I chickened out of shoe boots previously but I think these ones work much better with things other than trousers as they are not so pointy as my black ones and have a higher heel and so don’t make my feet look so big.
So, in full:
White shirt – Oasis
Grey shorts – Next
Blue velvet waistcoat – Primark
Black tights (they have a pattern on them similar to those knee high white socks you used to wear when you were about 6!) – H&M
Blue suede shoe-boots – New Look

Shopping With A 20% Discount!

So, Friday afternoon I hit the mall with every intention of making the most of my 20% Company magazine discounts and as you can see, I did! My purchases from the top: Long cardigan, dark grey, from Warehouse - it is quite chunky in an aran knit, think this picture is too small to see it properly though.
Roll neck sweater dress, pale grey, from Miss Selfridge - this is almost knee length on me and has incredibly long sleeves, always a plus when you're as tall as I am.
From Miss Selfridge I also got a short sleeve fitted denim dress that buttons through with large buttons, unfortunately I can't find a picture of it!
Shoes! These are from Faith and are actually a bright dark pink colour, Cerise it's called but this picture (from the Faith website) makes it look more red than pink.
And the shoe-boots. These are from New Look so no discount but they are blue suede and have buttons on the side.