Saturday, 31 August 2013

today i love... smoothies


This isn't a food blog, obviously, but I thought I'd break with tradition today to share with you one of my other passions in life besides fashion: fruit smoothies. OK, maybe passion is a little strong, but it's safe to say I am a big fan. It's partly because I don't really like eating much fruit on its own; I find it too sharp. But whizzed together in a blender and suddenly it becomes one of my favourite things to drink, especially on a hot day. I fell out of love with Innocent long ago (they've long since discontinued all my favourite flavours and now seem to have only about three different ones. Come on Innocent, pull your finger out). And since then I haven't really found any shop bought ones that do the trick, ever since M&S discontinued my favourite ever ones, the brekkie-to-go smoothies (it's been four years and I'm still really upset about this). So I now make my own, usually on a Sunday morning, which I love doing. It works out cheaper and they taste so much better. Having said that, though, it can be a bit trial and error and it's taken me a while to perfect the art. My first breakthrough discovery was the frozen fruits section of the supermarket (in Sainsbury's it's with all the ice creams). Frozen fruit is so much cheaper than fresh fruit and obviously keeps a lot longer, so even if you don't make smoothies all that often you can just dig into the freezer for a helping. It also keeps your smoothie ice cold, which is always a bonus, because nobody wants one that's lukewarm. The second discovery was frozen yoghurt. I always need some form of yoghurt in my smoothies because it adds a richness that elevates them above pure fruit versions, and frozen yoghurt again has obvious benefits over its fresh counterpart. Anyway, nowadays I think I've got smoothie making down, so I thought I'd share two of my favourite "recipes" with you (both serve 1).


Breakfast smoothie

2 or 3 scoops mixed berry frozen yoghurt (I use Tesco's own)
A generous handful frozen raspberries
A generous handful frozen blueberries
A banana
A small handful rolled oats
A drizzle of honey
A good dash milk / water

Put the frozen ingredients in the blender / smoothie maker first, then slice in the banana and add the other ingredients. Blitz until smooth, adding more milk / water as required to achieve the desired consistency.


Tropical smoothie

2 or 3 scoops mango & passionfruit frozen yoghurt (again, I use Tesco's own)
A generous handful frozen mango
A generous handful frozen raspberries
A glug of pineapple / passion fruit juice
(optional) A dash coconut milk

Blitz until smooth, adding more juice as required to achieve the desired consistency.


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Friday, 30 August 2013

today i'm wearing...






Topshop jumper /
Topshop jeans /
Isabel Marant boots /
Kurt Geiger bag /
NARS lipstick /

What I wore for a lovely trip to the National Gallery at the weekend. I know I shouldn't be celebrating the arrival of weather cold enough for jumpers, but I was very happy to be able to wear my lovely new knit.




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Wednesday, 28 August 2013

today i'm wearing...



River Island blazer /
Topshop top /
Zara jeans /
Tod's bag /
Whistles hat /

Sorry for the not so great photos but had to show you how I wore my lovely new hat the other day, as I didn't manage to get pictures on its first outing. I'm really liking it, even if a guy told me I looked like Michael Jackson... Ignore the haters, people.




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Monday, 26 August 2013

today i love... my wish list


For the last few months I've been posting monthly wish lists on the blog, which I hope you've liked as a feature. Personally I always find it interesting to see what other people would like to be buying in an ideal world and find a few hidden high street gems that I wouldn't necessarily have come across myself. However, sometimes it's felt a bit contrived trying to find 12 things I want at one specific time, so I've decided instead that from now on I'll keep an ongoing wish list on the blog, which I can add to as and when I come across something I like. So you'll now find a new tab in the blog header called 'wish list', which contains my constantly changing, well, wish list, which will be regularly updated with things I find and links for you to shop them. Oh, and in case you're confused between that and the 'shop' header link, this allows you to shop pre-owned pieces of mine on ASOS Marketplace. Enjoy!


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Saturday, 24 August 2013

today i'm wearing...






Topshop Boutique tee /
Topshop Boutique skirt /
ASOS shoes /
Zara bag /




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Wednesday, 21 August 2013

today i'm wearing...





Whistles jacket /
Topshop Boutique top /
Zara shoes /
Topshop bag /
ASOS bracelet /

Sorry for the blurry pictures; barely had enough time to take these before the light totally faded. Dug this lovely cracked leather clutch out of my wardrobe for a long overdue outing.




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Tuesday, 20 August 2013

today i love... 5 of the best scented candles


I'm not entirely sure I'm comfortable with the level of pretentiousness involved in having three favourite fig candles, but I'll go with it because I can't deny my obsession. Ever since I discovered the joy of a scented candle a couple of years ago, they've been my guilty shopping pleasure, and if I ever need a pick-me-up, buying a new one of these babies is a sure-fire way to get me in a good mood. I don't have the budget to try all the brands I'd like (Jo Malone is next on my list), and so far I've only bought one Diptyque, but I have tried quite a few cheaper candles and definitely learned which are good value for money and which simply don't smell at all. The above five are guaranteed to give you maximum aroma for your pennies.

I disagree with Space NK's description of this fragrance as fresh and fruity; rather it's green, woody and quite masculine. Not one for the faint-hearted. But it is oh so sophisticated, and started my love affair with all things fig (including the actual fruit, which is now one of my favourite snacks). A lot of money, yes, and doesn't last particularly long, but looks and smells just divine, plus you can wash out and re-use the jar (mine now holds my make-up brushes). Next on my list of Diptyque scents to try is Baies.

I discovered The Body Shop candles a couple of years ago when they released limited edition Christmas candles. I fell in love with the Candied Ginger one and am quite distraught that it hasn't been available since. Nevertheless this light, floral, feminine fragrance is a very good substitute. It's also great value: you get 60 hours of burning time for a mere tenner and a good, solid scent.

If you're someone who doesn't like really overpowering scents then I'd definitely recommend House of Fraser's range. They're very reasonably priced (and more often than not on a 2 for 1 offer) and the scent is very much a background one, which can be exactly what you need sometimes. Some of the scents are too sweet or heady for me, but I really like Wild Fig & Vanilla (sweeter and subtler than Diptyque's fig, and a serious contender for my all-time favourite candle fragrance), as well as Moroccan Rose.

I have to admit that John Lewis have redone their own brand range of scented candles recently, so I can't 100% vouch for them anymore, plus they seem to have discontinued the rose scent, which used to be my favourite. Nevertheless I had the old version of the Seagrass Linen scent a while back and really liked its freshness (think clean sheets). Hopefully it still delivers because it's a well-priced range with a wide variety of fragrances.

5. Muji Fig candle / £10.95
Muji's candle line is my newest and most exciting discovery. For less than £11 you get a range of very sophisticated scents which really deliver (not for those after subtlety). Predictably, I went for the Fig (note: not the Green Fig, which was altogether too sharply woody) and it's really not far off Diptyque. Next up I want to try Seashore, or maybe Old Rose.


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Sunday, 18 August 2013

today i'm wearing...





Topshop jacket /
Topshop Boutique tee /
Topshop Boutique skirt /
Zara shoes /
Zara bag /
ASOS necklace /

Unfortunately from now on I might have to start posting a little less frequently than every day. Sadly as I'm not a full-time blogger I'm pretty busy at the moment with various internships (and a nice hefty commute) so I'm struggling to find time for the blog every day. Sorry, I know it's annoying - I'm always willing my favourite bloggers to post more often - but I think it's important that I keep up the quality of the blog, rather than just thinking up posts for the sake of it which would be a bit lacklustre. Plus as the days get shorter it'll be harder for me to find time to take outfit photos. Rest assured though that I'll still be posting as often as I can, and always at least 4 posts a week. Thanks for your understanding and, as ever, for reading the blog!




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Friday, 16 August 2013

today i bought... topshop boutique croc leather skirt



More leather, I hear you say? Well, yes, and I make no apology for it. As obsessed as I am with leather, though, I'm even more obsessed with croc embossed leather. Ever since falling in love with Alexander Wang's croc embossed shorts what seems like forever ago, I've pretty much lusted after every similar item I've ever seen. I sort of have a genetic pre-disposition towards items like this; I find myself inevitably drawn to them in shops and try them on without even meaning to. That's what happened with this sensationally beautiful skirt, and, unfortunately for my bank balance, since it's more than I would normally spend on a skirt, I realised it was pretty much perfection. Not only is it patterned in a subtle but still noticeable way with the aforementioned croc print, but it's also butter soft leather and the perfect length (sadly I have to accept that I'm not 18 anymore and prefer skirts which leave a little more to the imagination, especially if they're going to be work-appropriate). Needless to say I took it home (after trying on about three of the same size - thanks to the lovely woman in the Oxford Circus branch who ran around finding skirts left in the changing rooms!) Check back tomorrow to see how I wore it today.


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Wednesday, 14 August 2013

today i want... whistles evie trapeze satchel



Another day, another Whistles bag that I've got my eye on... I can always rely on them to produce some lovely high quality leather pieces which look way above their high street station. This beauty has more than a little of the CĂ©line about it. I love the formal, structured shape, the soft navy colour and the elegant clasp. Another one for the Whistles wish list? Oh, go on then.


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Tuesday, 13 August 2013

today i'm wearing...






River Island blazer /
Topshop top /
Topshop jeans /
Topshop shoes /
Tod's Signature bag /

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Monday, 12 August 2013

today i'm wearing...





Topshop Boutique dress /
Zara bag /
& Other Stories ring /

It's quite hard to find the right weather in which to wear a leather dress with bare legs. Too cold and your legs freeze. Too hot and the rest of you boils. Luckily, I just so happened to pick the perfect day today. Winner.




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Sunday, 11 August 2013

today i bought... topshop cream cable knit



Sometimes rather than splashing out on trend-led items, it pays more to invest in classics, even though they're not as exciting at the time. I'd been looking for the perfect cable knit jumper for quite a while, and although this doesn't provide me with any groundbreaking outfit options, it's surely a worthwhile investment. It's satisfyingly chunky, with angora softness and lovely homespun cable detail. I can't wait to wear it with red lips and leather shorts. Unfortunately I'm going to have to wait until it's just a little bit cooler outside...


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Friday, 9 August 2013

today i love... camouflage print


Like many good trends, this one started with Christopher Kane. The designer, quickly becoming one of the most influential at LFW, showed camouflage in a whole new light in his A/W'13 collection: it was utterly sophisticated. Once the preserve of 90s girl band All Saints (if you're not familiar, check out Never Ever - great song), until recently the associations I had with this print were less than good: festivals, people who have slicked back hair and hoop earrings, combat trousers, crop tops and Rihanna wannabes (sorry, but Rihanna is no fashion icon to me). But then again that's precisely what I love so much about fashion: its ability to completely transform the connotations of a trend. It's happened more often than we can count in recent years, when the previously unthinkable has become supremely fashionable: midi skirts, kitten heels, white shoes... need I go on? Mind you, the power of camo can't be attributed solely to Kane: my ultimate favourite high street brand Whistles also deserves some of the credit. I read recently that they actually prefer to be referred to as a "contemporary" brand rather than a high street one, whatever that means, but perhaps that's fair, because they're not copying catwalk trends like many budget stores do. Whistles showed at LFW, meaning that they couldn't possibly have been influenced by Kane. Their amazingly chic camo print is all their own invention. It's safe to say I'm totally obsessed with the entire Whistles A/W'13 lookbook - seriously, I find myself poring longingly over its pages all the time - and the camo print is partly at fault. There is a particularly divine and utterly chic camo parka which will be on sale soon, and I never, ever thought I'd be lusting after a camo parka. I was in Topshop Oxford Circus today and made a beeline, as I usually do, straight for the Boutique section, where I was greeted with the sight of some simply amazing silk camouflage dresses. I tried the above one on, and I loved it, but I didn't so much love the price, so we'll wait and see on that one. In the meantime I'll be staring wistfully at the above pieces, and no doubt investing in at least one of them. Just remember that it's still easy to get it wrong with camo, so stick to Whistles and Net-a-porter rather than River Island and New Look.


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Thursday, 8 August 2013

today i want... and other stories nude shoe boots



When Swedish brand & Other Stories arrived on Regent Street a few months ago I couldn't quite believe how much I loved everything. When I set foot in that beauteous store I'm the proverbial kid in the candy shop and I almost like everything too much; it makes it hard to narrow it down to something to buy. So far I've only actually bought a silk shirt and a few beauty products (the rose body lotion is divine). This week, though, I've been popping in during my lunch break to have a proper browse and narrow it down to a slightly smaller wish list than just "everything in sight". The verdict is in and top of the charts are these simply amazing shoes. I love a shoe boot, and this one has everything going for it: lovely nude colour, satisfyingly chunky buckle, walkable heel height... The one downfall, alas, is the price, which is a little steep for me. For now it might have to remain on my wish list rather than in my wardrobe, or I may just keep staring wistfully at it in the store. Stay tuned.


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Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

today i'm wearing...





H&M jacket /
Zara dress /

My first ever (or in a very long time, at least) day dress is proving to be worth its weight in gold. And after years of wearing skinny jeans, I had forgotten how comfortable dresses are. It's safe to say I'm a convert.


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