Sunday, 19 April 2015

The long waistcoat... My new best friend!

The other day I popped into London to spend the gift cards that I was given for my birthday... (I know, I know - my birthday was a good 2 and a half months ago now).  You must be thinking "if that was me, I would have used them in a heartbeat!"  But you see, I honestly couldn't decide on anything!   I guess I just wanted to wait till all the new season stock had arrived and to tell you the truth, I am so glad that I did!

I had a couple of vouchers for House of Fraser and so I went into the Oxford Street branch, as it has a wider range of stock.  The brands I usually shop at in House of Fraser are:- Oasis, Miss Selfridge, Mango and Yumi.  So it was a real surprise that the piece I ended up choosing was from Warehouse!

I've always admired the clothes from Warehouse, but seemed to think that they were too office based and a little too grown up for me!  However, their new spring summer collection is the complete opposite!  There are lots of amazing prints and casual wear, as well as smart dresses for work.  I really feel that this year, their clothes are more ageless - meaning that they cover a wider audience as there is something for everyone in their collection! 

After trying on 14 items in the fitting room... (Yes, I really did try on that many), I sifted through the basic sweaters/casual tees, until finally choosing from the smart outerwear!

(Well I didn't want to rush my purchase just because I had a voucher to use!  No, no that's not how I work!)  I think of myself as a methodical shopper - even though I'm a stylist in my profession, when I go shopping I'm usually quite efficient and if I see something I like, I usually purchase it right there, rather than go through all the shops and then come back to it later.

Finally, I tried on the last item, which was a long waistcoat in a light charcoal colour that was made of mainly wool and viscose.  I know what you're thinking - "wool in spring?  Not very practical!"  But you see it is a great alternative to a coat!  It has no buttons and deep pockets, which helps to give a casual unconstructed look! 

I really fell in love with this waistcoat, because I've never had one before and also I have found it so useful already!  The most easiest way to wear it is to team it up with a pair of black jeans and a black polo jumper to stick with the monochrome look! 

However, you can also put it with a shirt, tucked into a high waisted mini skirt and teamed with a pair of high heeled boots.  Or for a more summery look, you can simply put it with rolled up jeans/chinos, a stripe tee and trainers/pumps! 

I absolutely love this item and I think that not only is it perfect for spring, it is also ideal for next autumn too, making it certainly a versatile piece for anyone's wardrobe.  And for £65 I think that it is a total bargain as it looks much more expensive and shadows a lot of the jackets in Whistles' collections too.

I hope you like this blog post and if any of you have long waistcoats like this in your wardrobes, then bring them out and get styling! 

M x

Friday, 3 April 2015

The Scarf - every woman's necessity!

Most mornings, on my way to work on the daily commute, I notice just how cold and brisk it is and so I thought that it would be ideal if I wrote a post about the one piece of outerwear that is so vital at these times.  A piece that we just cannot live without... and that my friends is the scarf!

Here are the three scarves that I used to create my top five looks!

Pom Pom Scarf: Jigsaw £59

Contrast Paisley silk scarf: Jigsaw £39

Inverted print scarf: Jigsaw £59 

Here are my top five favourite ways of how to wear them!

1.  The Knot!  This is by far the quickest style to achieve - I think that it works best with a long silk scarf.  Drape the scarf around your neck and simply crossover the two ends to meet in the middle, creating a knot.  It is really simple and looks stunning over a simple jumper or silk blouse.

2.  The neck tie!  This style works best with a silk scarf, but if you have a thin squared scarf then that would work just the same.  All you have to do with this style is to simply tie the scarf around your neck... I always think that tying it on the side of your neck looks more flattering and stylish! 

3.  The contemporary!   This is probably the most popular way to wear a scarf as not only is it easy to create, but it also looks comfortable and adds another texture to a simple jumper or dress.  To achieve this look take your scarf and wrap it around your neck, making sure that you take both pieces and bring them round to the front.  Then just pull out the neck a little so it becomes less tight and so that you can easily move!

4.  The cravat!  This style can be created with any style of scarf.  Simply drape the scarf around your neck and pull one of the sides so that it becomes longer than the other side.  Then take the longer side and wrap it over the shorter side, making a loop and then pull through, as if you were putting on a tie!   Once pulled through, simply thread the long piece through the loop and voila... A cravat is made!

5.  The bow!  To best achieve this look use a scarf that has a lot of texture to it - I ended up using one with small Pom poms attached to the edges of the scarf.  Simply drape the scarf around your neck so that you have two pieces hanging down either side of you.  Then towards you, put both pieces into the loop but don't pull all the way, as you want the effect to look like a bow! 

So there you have it... Five very simple, yet extremely elegant ways to wear your everyday scarf.  I hope this has become useful to you and that you now have a broader range of styling ideas!

Bring out the scarves from your wardrobes and get creating!

M x
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