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Wednesday, 30 October 2013

A date for your diary: next Wednesday the 6th of November at 3pm

Dear WIT readers, I'm so excited to personally invite you to hangout with me the Boden design team, guest host Lauren Laverne and international fashion bloggers That's Not My Age & Fash 'n' Chips for a sneak-peek of the Boden SS14 collection at 3pm GMT, Wednesday 6th November
I will be live from Somerset House in London and I so hope you can join the conversation on Google+ https://plus.google.com/+boden /and tweet your musings to me @WITblog and @bodenclothing #bodenpressday.
Laura x

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Wrap coat

Joseph coat, French Connection pants, Karen Millen shoes, Chanel bag, Oliver Peoples sunglasses
I could write a book about this type of coat: belted, un-lined, thin wool and overall so chic. I have three, my first one being a black Zara (I've had it 5 years still never let's me down), a camel Max Mara (the investment coat) and this grey Joseph number. The thing about wrap around coats is that they look good on any shape (the only style I could wear when I was pregnant too) and are super flattering on. It's not a major trend, just one of those thins that simply looks good. My tip is to keep an eye out for this shape and buy when you find! 

Friday, 25 October 2013

WIT mama Friday: First birthday party

I never imagined many things about motherhood, but  this one I really did not see coming: that I would care so much (let alone have the time of my life), organising a one year old birthday party! But yep, hands downs I loved every minute of it. I spent hours looking for inspiration on pinterest, deciding on a theme, getting the decorations, and making up party bags. It was my daughters first birthday but also a huge milestone for me as a mummy, so I wanted to celebrate in style and I had the best (slightly emotional) day. So much so, that I wanted to dedicate a WIT mama Friday to a "behind the scenes" from Greta's first birthday party and share all the lovely things I found for the day.

My inspiration
After Greta's liberty print Christening feast, I really wanted to get away from pastel colours and I wanted something bold and fun. I found the image above on Pinterest when searching circus themed parties and it became my little all-in-one mood board. Greta loves animals and I thought a circus themes party would be perfect!

My interpretation
I chose red as my main colour and bought plates, cutlery and napkins from my local £ shop, it's amazing the things you can find for £1! The cute stripe paper napkins were from a party shop in Westfield. I ordered Schelich animals from Amazon, they are expensive but we got to keep them and Greta will play with them for a long time.

We had Greta's party at her godmother's house in London. I didn't go overboard with decorations, a friend of mine with two children gave me the best advice and told me to go with lots of balloons.

I bought dozens of red and yellow ones from a £ shop and invested in a few super shapes foil helium balloons to really wow my little ones. I handed them out when the children left the party, they were a hit!

Ikea circus tent £17
The circus tent is from Ikea and was a great buy. I had no entertainment but a box of toys and the tent provided all the fun my 15 little guests needed! 

My home made caper mini pizzas
Food wise we kept it fingery food with home made mini pizzas, a selection of quiches, chocolate chip cookies and drinks.

For the little ones we had unsalted home made pop corn, cucumber and cream cheese sandwiches, Ellas fruit pouches and a jar or Organix treats.

Greta had pop corn for the first time and loved it!

Cake wise, and after much thought, we decided on Hummingbird Bakery "made without" Red Velvet Cake which spelled "Make a wish GZ" with a star sprinkler on top.

We also had a selection of carrot cake cupcakes that I decorated with sparkly star topper from Ginger Ray on notonthehighstreet.com.  Greta ate a whole cup cake  a whole one and had her very first hot of sugar!

Sparkly Star Cupcake Toppers by Random Imaginings £9.50
And to finish the afternoon off, I made each child a personalised party bag. I bought the stripy  paper bags from one of my favourite notonthehighstreet.com party suppliers called Peach Blossom.

 Inside I put mini boxes of organic raisins, a balloon and a little Schleic animal. Girls bags were closed with a little glitter hair clip from Next. Boys got stickers instead! 
Bags from Peach Blossom

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Currently obsessed with: touches of Red

Red is one of my favourite colours, it looks great with denim, with grey and with navy and has sort of become a "non-colour colour" which is easier to introduce in your wardrobe, even if you are a bit scared of colour! At the moment I love bright red mixed with deeper shades like maroon and cherry red, even if it's just in a shade of lipstick, which I'm  wearing today. I friend introduced me to this fab lipstick called Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick from Hourglass (my shade is called Icon £23), it stays on all day and it's the most amazing shade of red. I bought my red coat more than two years ago and every year I try to find a similar one on the high street because I know I will get lots of disappointment when I say it's not in the shops now. This French Connection version is gorgeous and very very similar to my minimal Zara one. If you want to indulge in a little red purchase, here are my favourite buys.

 1) Coast VERMONT EARRINGS  £18.00

2)  3.1 Phillip Lim Red Leather Pashli Satchel £713.00 my-wardrobe.com

3) Uniqlo cashmere jumper £49.90

4) French Connection Belle Boucle Wool Coat £200.00

5) Top Shop Gather 2-Part Pointed Heels £65.00

6) Marc by Marc Jacobs Spongey Wool Twill Tonal Dress £440.00  my-wardrobe.com

7) Top Shop Red Leather Calf Pencil Skirt £125.00

The MiH Breathless jean

New Look jacket, Zara jumper, MiH jeans, Karen Millen shoes, Marni earrings
There's a pair of jeans I've been wanting to talk to you about for a while, because every time I slip them on I think they make my feel amazing and my legs longer than they are in real life. They are called the Breathless and they are from MiH Jeans. I don't know what it is, if they are cut in a special way (must ask MiH, and by the way this is not some kind of sponsored post, I bought these jeans a while ago and MiH don't even know I'm writing this), but they are incredibly flattering on. On the website it says: "Designed to be the ideal ankle length skinny: a perfect fit and slightly cropped length make for the ultimate gamine jean" which is all very true and lately they are all I want to wear. I think you must try them on to believe, but if you are a similar shape to mine (shortish, wide hips and a waist) they are bound to look good on you too.  Oh and by the way, at the moment they are on sale and you can have them monogrammed with your initials!

The BREATHLESS Jean LOW RISE, SKINNY LEG was £190.00 now  £161.50

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Mix'em up

Whistles jacket, Gap shirt, Prada skirt, Chanel bag, Helmut Lang shoes
I did my winter wardrobe swap over at the week end (always a pain but totally worth it) and I found this old Prada skirt which belonged to my mum and that I hadn't worn in ages. I love mixing fabrics and turning something quite dressy into a smart casual outfit: leather, denim, patent and beads are all my favourites in one go.  I have a long day at work today with breakfast, meetings and an evening do so this outfit will take me through the day in style.  This skirt got me really excited because I'm going back to Florence in a month's time and I can't wait to go to the Prada outlets..

Monday, 21 October 2013

New purchase alert: LK Bennett almost flats

Gap jumper, J.Brand coated jeans, LK Bennett flats, Chanel bag, Accessorize earrings
Last week I finally got my hands on a pair of flats I had been eyeing for a while, they are called the Holly and are from LK Bennett. Reasons for instant love:

Pointy - I'm obsessed with pointy shoes mainly because they have a real leg lengthening effect. 

Black - perfect winter shoe and goes with everything 

Sturdy - they are a proper shoe because let's face it, if you live in London you need that with the weather.

Tini tiny heel - they are effectively flats but have the smallest heels which is square for comfort and gives your legs an extra lift 

Toe cleavage - just the right amount so that when you wear them with tights these don't curl put at the front (hate that look). 

They come in three styles, all black, tweed with a black point and black with a  royal blue point. For some reason I can't find the all black version on the website, but if you go in store it sits with the other Holly's. 

The Holly £155

Thursday, 17 October 2013

WIT mama friday: children shopping in Paris

Bon Ton
I was in Paris last week end. As I boarded the Eurostar on the way back to London with not a single thing for myself yet a bag full of stuff for Greta, I realised that  as exciting as "grown up" shopping can be, with Isabel Marant, Iro, Maje and Sandro every other corner, these days there's little you can't also fond in London, which to me is a huge turn off. On the other hand  what's really amazing and often totally unique is children's wear. In Paris you can find little gems like Talc, and be surprised with the affordable selection in Monoprix. I love everything about French children's wear: the pewtery colour palettes mixed in with just the right amount of print, the old fashioned shoes, the divine hair accessories... Not to mention the store experience that is often like walking into a fairy tale, Bon Ton in the Mares and Bon Point in Saint. Germain being two stores worthwhile visiting, even if you don't buy a thing. From Bonpoint's permanent sale shop to Bon Ton there's something in for everyone, so here's my lowdown of the best that Paris has to offer.

£ Affordable
££ Somewhat affordable
£££ maybe a hair accessory...
££££ even socks are too expensive. Worthwhile visiting for outfit inspiration though?!

Talc (££)
I particularly love the accessories in this tiny boutique in Saint. Germain. I'm always sure to find a quirky alice band or a glitter dusted chiffon "barrette" (French for slide) for Greta. I love the clothes too: beautiful prints and unexpected fabric combinations. This  time I bought a little wrap around faux fur gilet which Greta can wear under her jacket or as an alternative coat when in the pram.

Du Pareil a Meme' (£)
You need to do a bit of rooting in here, it's not all gorgeousness as you walk in like most other shops. There's a lot of dodgy prints and loud colours that are not my taste but in and amongst that you can find some great basics like leggings, jersey tops and cute cardigans, all of which I got for Greta this time. It's really cheap (6 Euros for leggings, 15 euros for a 100% cotton cardi) so makes it a great place for bargains.

Monoprix (£)
If there's one place you must go to that's got to be Monoprix. They are scattered all around Paris so ask for the one nearest to you. Word on the street is that their own brand Boutch'Ou is designed by an ex Bonpoint staffer, all of it at supermarket prices. Greta lives in their cute knitwear and liberty print blouses. Sadly it only runs up to 2 years so make the most of it while you can. 

Bon Ton £££
The Bon Ton store experience is one not to be missed. There's a bit of everything: clothes, accessories, nursery furniture, a bazaar of nick knacks and even a photo booth for extra fun. The clothes in Bon Ton are a bit "cooler" than in Bonpoint: think Bonpoint but scruffier. I love the store in the Marais store and its the sort of place where even kids have fun in.

Bonpoint permanent sale shop (££)
42 Rue Universite (Saint Germain)
The shop assistants are very snob and unwelcoming but if you can get past that, you might get hold of a bit of Bonpoint  at a humanly price. Really worthwhile going in June/July and January doing the end of season sales because you have sales over sales. I went before greta was born and got some lovely things. (see here for older post )

Bonpoint (££££)
I rarely buy anything from Bonpoint out of the sales, I just can't justify it but it has to be said: they are my favourite and what Greta is given is always a favourite. I love to look around in the store, get outfit inspiration and smell that distinctive Bonpoint baby scent in the air. The new Saint Germain store is enormous and totally gorgeous. 

Bon Marche (££)
What I love about this liberty style department store is that everything is under one roof: Petit Bateau, I love the shoe department with a small but impeccably edited range of children's shoes. I got Greta a pair of old fashioned winter lace up booties from French brand Little Rose. Expensive, but the Euro to Pound exchange rate worked to my advantage.

Spike earrings

FC coat, Maje jumper, J.Crew earrings, J.Brand jeans, LK Bennett flats, Jimmy Choo bag
I love wearing big earrings, together with statement necklaces they are a great way of updating even the simplest of outfits. My new obsession are spikes which add a bit of toughness  to my old favourite bling and give a bit of edge to a girlie outfit. Today I am wearing a pair from J.Crew that have spike diamontes but I've hand picked more pairs in store now.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

The simple black trouser

Accessorize earrings, Cos top, Raoul trousers, Karen Millen shoes, Jimmy Choo bag
 I'm in the midst of doing my seasonal wardrobe swap over,  and found these high waist Raoul trousers in my winter pile that are made of the most luxe, heavy fabric. I love a black, sharp ankle grazing pant but I often find it a bit boring, so give it a twist with statement accessories and a tucked in top.  Here are five top things to look out for when shopping for black trousers:

  1. Fabric. There's nothing worse than an acrylic/shiny looking black. Opt for natural fabrics like wool and cotton blends as much as you can and invest in a pair that feel luxurious;
  2. Cut. Opt for a tapered leg, cropped syle, it will look great whatever your shape and also when worn with flats or heels. 
  3. Front pleat it. A front pleat always look smart, look out for styles that have one;
  4. Shop in the right places. Some designers just do it better I would recommend Joseph, Whistles, Carven, Acne, Zara and Cos all seasonally have great styles
  5. Care.  Read the care label and make sure you take care of your item, it's a wardrobe staple that will last you a life time.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Easy brocade

New Look coat, J.Crew jumper, Marni HM trousers, KG shoes, Jimmy Choo bag
Ugh. Winter has arrived and I don't think I'm ready for it yet. I just hate the gloom, the cold and the rainy must-wear-socks kind of days. But all is not lost, there are some fabrics that look best in wintry months when paired with thick tights, luxe sweaters and layers and brocade is definitely one of them. I like to wear mine in the day, my trousers are from the Marni HM collaboration two seasons ago (how much are you looking forward to the Isabel Marant one soon??) and I'm dressing them down with simple basics for a day at the office.

Monday, 14 October 2013

Monday morning pick me up: great buys under £160

Critically acclaimed Monday morning pick me up is back (hee)! This week I found another seven great buys under £160: there's a little bit of Stella, a little bit of Isabel and even a little bit of Erdem at a fraction of the price, great cashmere and a wardrobe must-have leopard court too. I have fun adding the two wardrobes up and this week the "Cheap thrill" adds up to £550.00 and the "££" to £8,634. Wow!

Friday, 11 October 2013

WIT mama friday: the simple buys

New Look jacket, Isabel Marant jumper, HM jeans, Converse (Greta in Boutch'Ou cardi)
Sometimes I fall in love with something so plain and simple, yet often so expensive for what it is, that  I can't really justify buying it. I go back and forth asking myself: "Shall I buy it? Shall I not?", I tell myself all the usual things: "I will love it forever" "I will wear it with everything" "It's really great quality" "I won't buy anything else for the next month" .. and so on. With this particular item, I even went into Cos and bought the cheaper version but returned it the next day. It just wasn't the same! But you see, if at the end of the day all those things are kind of true (minus the "I won't be buying anything for the rest of the month") then I just cave. So on a rainy lunch break a few weeks ago I walked into Liberty's and bought this grey jumper from ISABEL MARANT ÉTOILE ' that I had been eying for a while. Since buying it I've been wearing it loads, especially at the week end when all I want to wear is jeans and a sweater, and this got me thinking: why do I save the best just for the office? This fabulously plain jumper has made me feel so special and chic everytime I slipped it on even without make up, with jeans and trainers on a day trip to the  local city farm, so far it was worth every penny.

ISABEL MARANT ÉTOILE 'Addyson' sweater £237.33

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Cherry red

Gap denim shirt, French Connection trousers, Karen Millen shoes, Zara bag
When I came up with WIT, I was looking for a blog/website that would give me a little dose of daily outfit inspiration, something that would allow me to shop in my own wardrobe and reinvent things I already had in a different way and with a different prospective, but I couldn't find anything online that was wearable enough for my real life. Most of you probably already own a pair of red trousers, but perhaps you haven't thought of pairing them with a denim shirt and leopard print shoes. Well I hope that your daily dose of WIT does just that, give you a little help and inspiration for tomorrow's outfit. If so, I'm happy! x

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

9 to 5

Gap jumper, Whistles skirt, Chanel bag, Boden shoes.
Every morning I make my way into work with my husband, we stop in front of the same wall on the way to the tube where he takes a quick photo of my outfit. From there, it's a quick upload onto the blog so that you have your daily inspiration early on in the morning. Today I'm wearing my Whistles faux leather skirt with a cable knit jumper and my Boden pointy slingbacks.

This is my desk at Red, as you can see I've customised my computer screen with quite a few photos of Greta, they make me smile during the day!

I don't spend that much time at my desk, I'm often out on show room appointments or press days, but if I'm in the office I'm usually to be found in the Shopping cupboard where I'm relentlessly editing product I've called in for my pages.

I love clothes and accessories and I've always known I wanted to work in fashion. Editing is great fun, I give a lot of thought to the product that goes on my pages (and on WIT) and always ask myself a million questions before featuring something (is it wearable, is it too expensive, does it look cheap etc). Here I'm selecting my favourite samples for a leopard print page. I love the shape of the Office Shoes pony skin pumps to the right, and the grey Kurt Geiger snakeskin intruders in the middle.

I usually have flats in my bag which I wear on the commute and switch to heels in the office, today I've fallen in love with these monochrome animal print courts from Stuart Weitzman and I'm giving them a test ride in the office (they are actually pretty comfortable).

I always try and get out of the office for lunch, it's my time for a quick bite and a walk around. Today I had a chicken burger from one of my favourite spots, Leon and a walk around one of my favorite London department stores, Liberty London. I love browsing in the children's department, they have the most beautiful selection of kids clothes and accessories... last week I gave in on a little something for Greta that I had my eye on for ages... a Stella McCartney bunny jumper.

Then it's back in the office for the rest of the day till it's time to go home to my baby. I walk in the door, change into my favourite Marks and Spencer cashmere joggers and it's a whirlwind of play time, bath time, story time and bed time. Crash!
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