WANTS AND WISHES

It seems odd that my last post of 2016 (and the first in nearly 2 months) is of wishlist form but, as this unbelievable year draws to a close, all I need is some retail therapy and about 10 shots of Sambuca.
Perhaps I would quite like the latter more than anything right now but hey, some new jeans would be nice too.

LONDON, FASHION AND MANY WEEKS

Once again, I have let myself fall into the not-so-easily escapable rut of allowing life to hinder my ability to blog. It has to be noted though, that such absence is not due to laziness or lack of inspiration but instead, it is thanks to the busynesses of my newfound London life. As I write this it has nearly been 8 weeks since I moved down south from my northern home of Liverpool - a place in which I have always felt I wanted to escape from. This feeling I have felt throughout my life does not stem from dislike for my home city however, but instead feels rather akin to a restless form of boredom.

ORANGE AND BLUE





Over a month has flown by since my holiday to Crete in July - the sunny backdrop of these pictures and yet, somehow the time passed feels even longer than such. September is now upon us and with the arrival of a new month, big changes have occurred in my life. 

VINTAGE DENIM



Vintage Levi jeans, specifically of the 501 variation have addmidedly been on my radar for quite some time now and yet, only recently have I taken the plunge and purchased a pair. The reason for my wardrobe lacking such jean was not down to lack of lust - as prolific as the cult denim is, the search to acquire a pair however, proved somewhat difficult. Or, such was until ASOS marketplace came in that is, with all of the frayed, straight-leg form I had been longing for.

PARIS PHOTO DIARY DAY TWO


Day two began with a set plan in mind - a visit to the Eiffel Tower and then venture to the Louvre. The heat was considerably stronger than the day before - the sun was out for the most part - something which was particularly welcome for our trip up the Eiffel Tower. You see images of the Eiffel Tower everywhere, it is definitely the one landmark that signifies Paris, it IS Paris - one simple outline of the tower speaks of the city itself. It really was a pretty sight in the day admits the sunlight yet I just can't help but wish I had witnessed the Eiffel Tower in lit up glory at night, maybe next time. We went early, it was still morning as we were queuing up yet there were still a considerable amount of people, nothing of what would be expected at peak summer holiday time though, I imagine. The lifts to the top (there were two) were still packed and very warm, nonetheless yet the views at both levels were astonishing, I have always loved a Birdseye view of a city from a rooftop - there is something so peaceful about hanging above the bustling below and, even better when such is experienced in Paris.

PARIS PHOTO DIARY DAY ONE



Paris has always been a city that I've longed to visit, if not for the fashion or the beauty of the architecture but because of the absolute adoration that everyone associates with the French capital city. And now with having visited the city in question for a brief yet perfectly pleasing city break just two weeks ago, I can finally confirm what all of the fuss is about. What a dream it must be to live in Pairs, what with all of the utterly stunning buildings let alone their vintage shops and THE FOOD but for me, two full days in the city was all I had to spend - come rain or shine - and I adored every moment of those fleeting 48 hours. 

RED LIPS, RED SHOES


Zara stripes are abundant as ever in my wardrobe this month, amid the pinstriped tops though, a certain pair of strange, tie-up crop trousers have by far out-beaten the rest of the blue hued garments to prime adoration in my heart. It seems that poplin stripes of baby blue tone have somewhat become the Zara uniform of the season, varying alterations of the same print feature on an undeniable akin assortment of garments at the high street store. Take these glorious trousers for example, as perfect as they are in current form, Zara has crafted a number of items albeit to similar effect: straight trousers, plain wide legged trousers, all wonderful yet all strikingly (very nearly) the same. 

19

Going out-out attire, or, evening wear (with a less formal dress code) is a sartorial classification that I approach slightly differently to casual day wear. Heels of course, are mostly a must - I prefer the block heel, black is effortless as ever and as cost-effective due to its fate to pair with everything and, thanks to the block, durable and most importantly, the most comfortable heel I have found - avoiding the mid-heel that is. Heels are the basis to which I form most of my going out-out outfits upon and if black skinny ripped jeans, aka the only time such skinny is the denim of choice, are not my point of call (usually consisting of a strappy top or bodysuit, see - common pairings in a market saturated with Missguided, it's unavoidable okay?) then, a skirt or trousers it is. For some odd reason that I tend to put down to the one wear and over it routine I accustomed to dresses in the year of 18th parties, I tend to avoid the one strength garment, separates are forever more interesting and, due to their single nature, always need a partner which can gloriously be any number of items, eternally interchangeable and thus you always have a new outfit at hand.

SUMMER & TIME: WISHLIST AND THOUGHTS



The month of May is soon ending and be it so that June is less than an a week away, and with that - so is my 19th birthday - a year gone already in official adulthood? It cannot be but, somehow it is. There are currently too many things that I cannot fathom to be truth and while I feel that I may possibly utter this comment every single year before September comes around, I truly do mean it in full, horrifying effect this time: this year has gone SO quickly. It was only today in fact that I picked up a copy of The Sunday Times Style magazine off of my bedroom floor, a particular copy that I had only sworn I had placed just two if not several weeks previous on the same spot with due intent to read yet, to my horror while examining the Donatella-clad cover did I discover the date: 21st February 2016. 3 MONTHS AGO. HOW DID THIS HAPPEN? Weekly magazines, I've found, have of sudden become a constant, jolting reminder of the fleeting speed that a 7 day week does pass by and, especially so when only to be broken up by retail shifts and weekend drinks. September will soon, indeed be here and so will my move to London paired with the start of university, both of which are equally scary thoughts - a new development I may add, it is strange contradiction to be had that although in overview, I feel that time has slipped by without much notice, I have had copious time to stop and think and therefore worry and worry some more about the now not so distant future and the uncertainty it entails. But it will be fun right? Time will only tell.

BLUE SKIES, WHITE CAMI


There is just something so effortless about the cami top - a special, seductive quality that is also very synonymous with its sister slip dress which renders the entire 90s attire eternally appealing and, especially so when cherry-picked by the eternally alluring Alexa Chung. Although, it is important to point out that while this particular cami top certainly embodies the light essence of 90s Kate Moss perfection - the Hattie cami - as named by Chung as part of her Archive by Alexa collaboration with M&S, was in fact inspired by an underdress slip from the 1950s. While the 50s is admittedly a decade that I am not fond of at all in fashion terms - puffy skirts, polka dots and the sweat-heart neckline are all characteristic of the decade and are certainly ensemble counterparts that never cross my sartorial radar - yet, the surprisingly pared back, lingerie inspired feel that the strappy cami in question emits is certainly a vibe that I am all for, especially when served in delicate, ivory-laced following form (and note, said unstructured flowing is wonderfully delicate yes, but does something for your boobs it does not). Alexa, you have done good, yet again.

THE WARDROBE REVOLVE

 
My cropped flare love affair - if you will - is an undoubtedly reoccurring and very nearly, consist theme of this blog. It is most certainly distinct in the array of personal style posts featured - although varied in their denim they are not. The prominent re-wear of my favourite pair of jeans (The Topshop crop flare of dreams, to be exact) is in true, Lizzie McGuire 'You are an outfit repeater' form and, unapologetically so. But, should we, or rather, I, feel bad about rotating, or rather, downright re-wearing our clothing, especially when autonomously documenting such though the notoriety that is a fashion blog? Of course not but such open, honest reaction has not stopped myself from feeling guilty about my revolving jeans wear but instead, it has evoked a feeling that my clothing choices are rather worn-out and well, boring.

MY PICKS: THE MET GALA 2016


Officially called the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Benefit or rather, the Met Gala, as what it is more commonly known as, once again took place on the first Monday in May, last night in New York. Although the purpose of the event is to raise money for the Met's Costume Institute, it is largely seen as a major fashion event - and with Anna Wintour as chairman of the Gala, there is no surprise that it is treated as such - this year however, it was an affair to say the least. The theme in question, was as usual, based around the opening of the Costume Institute's exhibit which this year is: Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology. As always, although it is not compulsory, many incorporated the featured idea into their Met Gala looks which made for some interesting and certainly strange outfits to say the least but of course, there were also many that the theme was lost on.

SAME OLD STRIPES


Stripes, although a sartorial staple of course, their presence in my wardrobe had somewhat fell short of abundance before old faithful Zara recently triumphed with treasure in the form of pale blue pinstripes. Often referred to as what should be a 'basic' element to any respectable person's wardrobe, stripes had before seemed just that to me, basic. Now, I did not attach the style with such term to define the nautical design as boring in my opinion - not at all - but, the navy and white striped allure had always been lost on me. Sure, I thought stripes were great, how could anyone hate something as simple and inoffensive as stripes? Although, even then I owned one or two alternating block coloured items in various forms (and still do, mind, not that these pieces see much wear now and in all honesty they were never my most favoured of items say two years ago either) but still, the infamous Parisian infused acclaim that is so often paired with the Breton stripe just never seemed to hit the sartorial spot in my view - I mean, a stripe is a stripe, what more could you do with it? Zara it seems, knows exactly how to dress up the old, worn-out stripe. Do as Zara and simply revolve the stripe vertically, add an off the shoulder element and you have my full, lustful attention. On paper, the light blue garment is not too dissimilar from a certain stripped H&M crop top which still inhabits my wardrobe, albeit forgotten. Yet, details are important as ever and it so transpires that thin pinstripes and long, oversized sleeves (intentional upsizing, do note) are the way to my stripe-seeking heart, not bandage bodycon fit of the past. Since Zara has rinsed my bank account dry in pursuit of quenching my stripe shortage, the lure of the simple and never fussy stripe has seemingly strengthened. Whether it be a French Bretton a la Bridget Bardot inspiring a lust for a certain Comme Des Garcons Play top or even, a wish for a navy striped midi skirt, the once given characteristic of basic needn't apply anymore.

FASHION BLOG FAVOURITES

Following on from my previous post divulging the recent evolution of fashion blogs, I thought it would be apt to share my favourites, to keep the love going and all. I will have had a fashion blog for four years this September (only 3 of which have been on this platform) and my interest in such has not wavered one bit - for my own person musings and the content of other fashion bloggers - if anything, I would say such has spiked over the years. There is nothing I love more than discovering new blogs to read, and there are those that I love for both their style and their words, the latter it is after all, what makes fashion so intriguing to me, I adore a good story.

M&S &: ARCHIVE BY ALEXA

 
Alexa Chung is certainly no stranger to the fashion world. Not only is the 32 year old notoriously well dressed, something which has seen her accumulate a passionate following and notoriety within the industry and beyond, her talent too has stretched to many a corner of the fashion industry. With everything from modelling, presenting, writing, and, most recently, designing in her repertoire, whatever Alexa turns her hand to seemingly turns to gold, and is destined to be a hit. There is no surprise then, that Marks and Spencer turned to Chung to curate a 31 piece womenswear collection for the high-street brand inspired by their vast and historical archive, aptly entitled Archive By Alexa. 

THE FASHION BLOG EVOLUTION


As fashion blogs go, personal style posts are often the main feature at hand - and there is a valid reason for this of course. While a blog is a personal platform mainly created in order to voice your own opinions, when the category of 'fashion blog' comes to mind, instinct rings the definition of such as more of a showcase of ensembles curated by its founder. Now, while I adore writing - as an aspiring fashion journalist after all - constructing posts about diverse topics within the fashion industry is just as engaging and as inspiring for me as styling and shooting an outfit for a personal style post. Even though, when the latter is in prime position on the blog front, I enjoy narrating the clothing pictured just as much as I would a descriptive overview of a catwalk collection. While it is definitely words that engross me more so, and the power that a good fashion journalist can hold over me is second to none, there will always be a lingering, captivating quality that any striking styling post has in common which allows such to stun with or without accompanying words. Think Pinterest even, and Tumblr - websites founded on the very basis of the practice of curating images which suit your desires or aesthetic even, with a platform with its sole focus on the visual aspect, it leaves very little room left for words. These platforms in the modern social media age of today are so saturated with personal style, street style and editorial shoots that it is pleasurably hard to avoid encountering any of the aforementioned and, this is not a bad thing at all. However, the undeniable influence and popularity of sole images leaves me wondering if, without all of the articles penned by my most favoured bloggers and journalists alike, would the power of fashion blogs and their influence still ring as true and bright as it does for me today, in their current written format?

CONFESSIONS OF A TRAINER-PHOBE

I have a confession of sartorial standing to make, one that almost makes feel like a fraud, what, standing there in a pair of Stan Smiths, otherwise known as one of fashions most favoured style of trainer. Until point of purchase of said athleisure footwear, I had taken a rather adverse approach to remotely anything that emulated the 'sportswear for casual wear' trend and so on. For me, fashion has always translated into my personal style as something more elevated than casual - not to say that what I decide to wear is a forced decision or 'put on' statement - but, I have always gravitated towards feeling structured in an outfit, an ensemble which looks absorbing, layered with depth, because with that brings a shield of comfort - regardless of the actual comfort level of the featured fabric or footwear - as that is something sportswear in my eyes could never possess and so thus, its appeal time after time, had failed on me.


FARFETCH SPRING PANTONE INSPIRED OUTFIT

Spring, the season of vibrant, renewed life is upon us and with it, bringing a whole new, bountiful colour palette to satisfy your sartorial playing. Think pastels but offset, not your typical babyish innocence or usual sorbet sweetness either - although the scheme is stronger in the latter, instead, a more accurate depiction of pantone's spring/summer 16 shade offering is a mixture of the two, without forgetting of course, the slight injection of darker colours in-between the saccharine. Deep burgundy and navy are surprisingly on cards this season, too. With ten hues to feast your desires upon, it is easy to establish that the sartorial combinations are endless, with anything from a primary colour themed ensemble to a dusty rose, blush tinged outfit feasible, it is almost overwhelming and certainly, a hearty injection of colour post bleak winter is needed and most definitely, necessary in the style stakes of the season.

The outfit: | 1. Stella McCartney Colour Block Top | 2. Isabel Marant 'jeanne' Skirt | 3. Dorothee Schumacher Eyelet Cropped Jacket | 4. Brain Atwood Geometric Shoes | 5. Marc Jacobs Heart Bag |

So, when Farfetch (an online store specialising in designer labels that dreams are made of) got in touch concerning a certain spring fashion blogger competition they are hosting (in which you have the chance of wining a £250 voucher to spend on their store, ah) based around a spring inspired ensemble, incorporating the pantone pigments of the season no less - of course - I was immediately interested and inspired. For me, as I began before, the onset of spring is a like breath of fresh air, permitting freedom from the conforms of winter tights, trousers and the likes - the weather gets warmer and the legs come out, free from the bounds of thermal-wear, and for that I rejoice - SKIRTS. 

Of course, a warmer season means brighter everything, and such shouldn't solely be bound to the glory that is blue skies and golden daffodils, no. And so, in taking inspiration from the style marvel that is Pandora Sykes, I decided upon an item that would see you becoming the human embodiment of a sunbeam emitter, a tinfoil-esque beaming ray of light, if you will, and a delicious one at that - if not in spring, then when can you? Taking full hold of the seasons colour scheme, the fitting long sleeve multi-toned Stella McCartney top makes a striking pair with the Isabel Marant metallic wonder. Its mixed hues incorporate the very nature of the pantone scheme with rose quartz, serenity and Iced Coffee in play. Whether you decide to style the ribbed colour block of glory tucked in to the silver mini skirt - in complete effect or styled in an effortless, half-in, half-out manner - such would assemble as a striking spring outfit, capturing the very bright and rich-in-colour essence of spring. Acting as a calm breeze on the standout stake of rest of the ensemble, outwear takes form as a crisp, fresh, white eyelet jacket. Although slightly triggering for trypophobia if I do say so myself (fear of small holes, really strange but a thing trust me, it's creepy), eyelets are a notable asset, especially when suitably coupled with the silver ruffles of the Marant mini. In an darker offset, black shades and geometric, monochromatic patterned sandal shoes complete the spring look, and yes, black may be a shade relating to the dark days of winter best but, while it is important to utilise colour to its advantage in the bright setting of spring, a fun black accessory such as the Marc Jacobs heart cross-body bag ties the outfit together in a solidifying manner while the fun, heart shape retains the playful vibe that the season of Spring very much inspires.

(Photo credit: Farfetch.com, Pandoraskyes.com, manrepeller.com, maisieivy.com, tumblr, pinterest)

EVERYONE IS BEAUTIFUL

Now, I am not usually one to feel partial towards a canvas tote bag - if not for practicality purposes that is - but with an iconic, and charitably positive Bella Freud design etched on the front (and back) it is safe to say that my interest spiked and, I just HAD to have it. Sold at Sainbury's no less, in aid of last Friday's Sport Relief, and all the better then, especially as I am not currently (ah, as if such will change anytime soon) in the position to be able to afford a Bella Freud original (sob) this, will have to feed the desire for now. It made my day as much, when the designer herself liked my picture which featured said bag on Instagram, ALMOST as good as when the wonder that is Alexa Chung liked my tweet on twitter last month, the actual dream. 

MIU MIU AW16 AND THE 'SEE NOW, BUY NOW' DEBATE

The closure of fashion month materialised in the form of a Miu Miu show, and with it, Miuccia Prada delivered a defining mood which settled on more than just the clothing sent down the catwalk. If the denim surplus of recent season wasn't already evident enough, Miu Miu's AW16 collection, one that was crisp yet nostalgically abundant in blue denim - something which has not been seen at the fashion house in recent past - is statement enough for the return of the real jean. The deep denim deliverance was matched with bold, nostalgic print, a style statement that Miu Miu continually creates to exceptional quality. Yet, such technique does not render Miu Miu archaic or outdated and while it is not a label that you would relate with the minimalist modern movement, instead, what Miu Miu demonstrates so eloquently season after season is the unique talent that its designer, Miuccia Prada possesses in her eye for simultaneously pairing the attributes of vintage and the contemporary in an innovative manner that is antiquated yet still, so refreshingly youthful. 

PARIS FASHION WEEK: CÉLINE AW16


Paris Fashion Week, to me, has always seemed like this distant yet entrancing affair, an event which sort of floats on a separate stake above the other offerings from fashion month, but such high view of the French fashion capital may be solely due to the romanticised reputation of the city in which this particular fashion week plays host. I do dream of visiting Paris after all, but doesn't everyone? Which is the point exactly. Although, Paris Fashion Week is not just solely a delightful thought without substance, certainly it is a manifestation of the beauty and illustrious nature of the city itself. With it, PFW incessantly delivers a showcase in abundance of some of the most highly coveted and critically acclaimed designer labels of current notoriety such as Acne Studios and the powerhouse that is Chanel. However, an ever-delivering brand and continuous standout favourite of mine just has to be the French ready-to-wear brand Celine, a label championed by designer Phoebe Philo (rumours have been swirling that this collection may be her last for the brand although, reportedly the like has been denied) for its effortless yet intriguing appeal, something which needs no introduction - just look to the likes of Zara to see Philo's dominating influence on the fashion industry in effect. In just through browsing the high-street and online alike it is hard not to notice Celine's ungoverned control in the fast-fashion overdrive - a practise that is arguably polluting the creator's innovative process in itself. 

MFW: PHILOSOPHY DI LORENZO SERAFINI AW16



Not being one with a penchant for fairytales of a traditional sense, the made up magic of children's tales may be lost on me but the dreamer in me still lives on through the sense of romanticism and its sartorial counterpart - in all of its ruffled goodness. Although, it is a strange contradiction that ruffles, high-necks and bows are not only considered an airy romantic adornment to an item of clothing but, simultaneously such detail can be likened to the gothic, dark Victorian era (as seen at Topshop Unique). Now, while I am all for both spectrums of the romance vs gothic sartorial gauge - and certainly both elements were at play in Lorenzo Serafini's manifestation however, it was the light, sheer and clean-cut frill which took full, dominating form in his AW16 collection.

ALL ABOUT THE SLEEVES


Elongated sleeves may be just a slight alteration to a top or blouse solely but what a difference such makes to the overall appeal of an ensemble, and intrigue. Sleeves have been in prime focus of late, firstly with the the 70s revival of last summer - fluted sleeves in all their glory graced garments in abundance and said trend seems not only to have stuck around, but evolved further. Now, sleeves are not only in wide frilled form as SS16 and more recently, AW16 catwalks saw the conception of the oversized arm but not in a sense that is bulky or of ill-fitting manner, instead it is of a structurally statement standard and certainly not a fault. While a longer sleeve is certainly a visual delight, it could be seen as slightly impractical but I myself not being one to shy away from an item for its comfort level - I appreciate the statement sleeve in all of its glory, that and its hand-warming attribute in the chilling mornings.