Humidity is a bitch

I am very sorry.

It's been a while since my last post and I levy responsbility/fault to humidity. Try taking an outfit of the day picture when the lens clouds up and you have to wait 20 minutes for it to become crisp and focussed....takes a bit of the fun away.

This photo is a prime example/piece of evidence - a gorgeous low backed dress from Zara in a bright blue/aqua but I am surrounded in a heavy air haze.

This was the best of the lot in terms of clarity....

Whilst this is admittedly quite flattering - who doesn't like the soft gauze effect? - it's also a bit crap in photos.

In truth it's also been a very busy work week and not much is going on clothing wise. I wore clothes (obviously!) but it's all pretty blah....I mean alot of what I wear is blah but in this case much more corporate and dull.

I went to the mall today in hope of some inspiration but the shops are full of wintery wear and seeing as I am going to be in Dubai for a few months, it all seems a bit irrelevant.

Cue sad face 

I think a shopbop.com sale order is required to lift my spirits. They have amazing bargains, deliver in three days and because I am in Dubai, I don't pay any tax. Hurray :) Shopbop.com is normally a site I flirt with but rarely buy from because of the associated tax charges that you see at checkout...so I am going to enjoy it whilst I can!

Anyway, a couple of things I did buy - and love - are from Forever 21. I was trawling their accessory section for the studded bracelets that Sandra recently posted about. I didn't manage to find them but I did find these....

...and I love the quirkyness and the mixed metal effect. For about £3 each I also love the price - a bargain never fails to make me happy :)



By the way, this is what I wore to the mall...you know it, you've seen it but heck I love every single item you see here so it's worth posting, right?  :)



Jacket: GAP
Shirt: Whistles
Shorts: H&M
Bag: Miu Miu
Shoes: Tory Burch

It's been a few days = ramble

* I am covered in freckles...we are talking tons of the things. This means two things: a) Sun damage and b) I don't need to wear so much makeup. The latter is nice, the former not so much. I am using Bioderma SPF50 and I don't even go outside that much but the sun is strong here...so it would seem. I do like a bit of colour - as politically incorrect as that sounds - but I like the evenness that comes from faux tan. What I would give for some St Tropez - I know they sell it here but you have to make some effort to hunt it out...something for the To do list :)
* Bath and Body Works Wallflowers - I have just tweeted about these and boy o boy, these are amazing. I am a HUGE fan of the Slatkin & Co candles that are sold via BABW but the wallflowers are a revelation...incredible smelling flat and none of the candle hassle. You bet I am going back there to stock up! At the moment I have Sensual Amber and Twilight Woods - let me know if you have any scent recommendations :)

Looking forward to getting more regular on the posts - it doesn't feel right to not post at least every other day :)

Have a great Friday!

Flash!

Today is a bit of a write off. I got my hair done. I met a friend. I had three glasses of red wine over a 3 hour lunch and then had to retire for a nana nap. Shame.

Before I drunk myself sleepy this is what I wore....another stalwart item from my wardrobe. This dress never gets old :)

Apologies - just one photo as I felt embarrassed to request a full-on shoot from my friend. She was slightly bemused by the whole concept as it was :)



Dress: Cheap Monday
Belt: American Apparel
Bag: Miu Miu
Shoes: Kurt Geiger (although you can barely see but they are pretty diamante sandals I got in the ASOS sale)
Sunglasses: Gucci 

Now the hair?

I am very happy. It's a nice rich, neutral brown but to make it a bit more interesting my stylist added some flashes of highlights along the underside.


It was just 5 or 6 foils in total but it just adds "enough" to break up the colour. I really like the effect of this and quite like the tone of the blonde too...mmm wonder what this would be like littered all over? :)

For anyone in Dubai I go to JetSet in JBR and the stylist is called Elena.

(PS. It looks shorter in the above picture but I think this is a combination of the styling and the fact that most of it was at the front....rest assured: no scissors came anywhere near me :)

To wrap up...

Some other musings that I think require sharing:

* Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser is the new Liz Earle - I started using this by accident and now I think I am hooked. I have even bought the mahoosive/salon size bottle - that's how much I like it. If you suffer from the oilies (and here I suffer a lot!) then this is your salvation. I don't find it drying - I find it effective in cleansing and neutralising the oil production. Pair it with a muslin cloth and it's happy skin days
* Sleek Peach Perfection remains my favourite lip product - I have just used up my first container and I will start working my way through the back-up. I like Bare Minimum too but Peach Perfection is holy grail material. In fact lets not beat around the bush - it is holy grail. Just deal with the slightly weird metallic aftertaste and appreciate the colour.
* My next make up purchases will be... - Make Up For Ever Smokey Lash and Make Up For Ever Waterproof Eyebrow Protector. I am trying to be "good" though and use up Lancome Doll Eyes before I buy anything else...I literally cannot wait until this sucker dries up but annoyingly it seems to be lasting quite a long time - probably the only good thing I can say about it.

Okay, that's enough rambling for now :) I will just close with some pictures of my lunch - I always salivate over people's pictures of food and today I had sweet potato fries for the first time in months so I felt it was worth a share! So yummy!




Hope you have a lovely Saturday everyone!

L
x

Easy does it

Here there are again...the H&M shorts I love so much. I know it's obvious - because I wear them pretty much all the time but I will tell you this - money very well spent. Slouchy, soft and as I have previously mentioned, a toe-dip into the denim short trend without needing to reveal arse cheeks.

Perfect stuff.

So this is what I wore to the mall for lunch in Carluccio's and supermarket shopping. It's all glam round here, isn't it? :p






Shorts: H&M
Tee: Cheap Monday
Jacket/blazer: GAP (not worn for long)
Shoes: Tory Burch (new!!! Got these from shopbop.com and they delivered in 2 days! From USA to UAE - incredible)
Sunglasses: Gucci

I am getting my hair colour sorted tomorrow. I feel like it's been sometime since I had a good dye job and I am hoping for something akin to Lindt 80% chocolate - ie, a dark, cool brown.

This is what it looks like in direct sunlight at the moment...I don't hate it, it's warm and quite vibrant but I am craving that refreshed feeling that comes from some fresh colour.

Lengthwise I am not touching it. It's finally getting to the length I want it and I am not letting any scissor happy hairdresser interfere with that!
























Hope your Friday goes well...

I am going to settle down and read Ahlan! magazine (i.e, trash gossip), paint my nails with CND Effects in Gold Sparkle and sip my cappuccino which I can already tell was made with full fat rather than skimmed milk....ugh, don't you just hate that? :) 


I'll try and make more of an effort with my outfit tomorrow but I'm not going to dress up especially for blog photos so don't be surprised if it features these bloody shorts :)

x
L

Marilyn Moment

I had some meetings today so decided to sport one of my favourite Zara dresses. Deep v at the front, an appropriate knee length and made of the lightest fabric that dances as you move.

The latter point is all very well and good in light to no breeze - but if the wind picks up you will be fighting a losing battle against pants exposure. I rushed inside before things got indecent :)







Dress: Zara (I think last season)
Jacket: Topshop (This season - but I haven't been able to find this on the website so fingers crossed it is in stores)
Shoes: Kurt Geiger (A couple of years old and still going strong :)

I have to continue my rave about Studio Fix Fluid. It's doing it for me people, it really is. The coverage is superb and there is something about it that seems to work for my skin in this kind of weather.



This, NARS Casino Bronzer, MAC Peachstock lipstick with Sleek's Peach Perfection Pout Polish, hot weather, Pepsi Max, my new 50mm Canon prime lens, Bose headphones, Bon Iver and strong cappuccinos are the things that are currently making me very happy.

:)

See you soon everyone

x

Schlepp

I was working from home today. It's a curious thing working from home. It sounds so restful and relaxing - the ultimate freedom....but then you end up working 12 hours a day - rather than 8.

Nevermind. The upside of course is wearing whatever you damn well want to. Today I pulled on my very favourite lazy pieces and to make it interesting I wore some obnoxiously bright shoes :)






See I told you they were obnoxious, didn't I? :)

Tee: American Eagle
Cardigan: American Apparel
Shorts: H&M (my favourite denim shorts everrr...although I must share some studded ones that I got for my birthday from Topshop :)
Shoes: Tory Burch (from theoutnet.com as always: I think these were less than £60, reduced from a crazy £180)
Bag: Miu Miu
Sunglasses: yes they are permanently on my face - Gucci :)
Big volume hair recovering from yesterday's blowdry: Model's Own


WTF

On a perfume note I am NOT impressed by my beloved Jo Malone Vanilla and Rose Cologne. A few weeks ago I noticed it had most definitely turned and I have only had it a few months. Is this normal for this brand? Let me know!

It's not all bad though...I am absolutely loving Viva La Juicy by Juicy Couture. It's fruity, summery goodness that feels right here. It doesn't last all that long but it remind me of Marc Jacobs Daisy - not in scent of course but because as soon as you spray it you feel fresh and clean.



I noticed recently that Escada's Taj Sunset is Viva La Juicy's "cracked out cousin" equivalent - ie, an overdose of fruity notes. Can't deny - I have been tempted to purchase that one in duty free...but it's not part of my collection....yet :p

Hope you are all doing well!

x
L

River Island Pleated Maxi Skirt

Can you just imagine the difficulty I am going to have ironing this thing? All those teeny tiny pleats requiring close attention...and fyi: I am not that great at wielding an iron. I will struggle.

Dry clean only :)

However, the cleaning bill will be worth it...because this is a great cross-seasonal item.

The "this" I am referring to is the River Island pleated maxi skirt that I blogged about here.

I wore it today and lazily paired it with the a black body and a brown belt. I did feel strange about the brown belt (I had a mini conversation with a reader called @kellyyes about this)...it feels wrong to pair the two tones together but when it's all you have to hide an elasticated waistband, you deal. I am dealing and actually, I don't think it looks too bad.

A little more about the skirt:

a) Unlike yesterday's effort, this could easily be worn in winter.
b) It's extremely comfortable and can be worn either high on the waist or above the hips
c) The double layering makes it. Its fitted and yet provides volume with movement. This fact negates any potential frump effect that you always risk when you don a long skirt. It swishes and moves as you do and boy, do I like to swish :)

Skirt: River Island (current season)
Top: Topshop body
Belt: Swiped from a Forever 21 skirt
Shoes: Pour La Victoire (last season)
Sunglasses: Gucci

And because I like to end on a little ramble....here's a few things I am enjoying at the moment:

1) Studio Fix Fluid - bought over to Dubai to use up and I have to say that despite the awful smell of the product, it provides perfect, long-lasting coverage. I am experiencing something like love.
2) NARS Penny Lane - another product I wanted to use up. I have hit pan and like the colour it gives cheeks. It doesn't last a terribly long time after application but it's a light, flattering glow...and I am considering a repurchase once I use a few other products up.
3) Chanel Particuliere - an impulse application on the toes and before I knew it I was slapping it on my fingernails. Nothing beats this. Nothing. At least not this week :p
4) A really good glass of red wine - and this is how I toasted my Saturday night. A Cabernet and Merlot blend. Delicious!

Any other wine lovers out there? If there are....what's your favourite? I LOVE Amarone...it's my special treat tipple. I will also happily accept any Rioja within any price range :)


Hope you all have a great Saturday!

L
x

The H&M Mesh Skirt

Apologies for the lack of posts this week - but here I am, back in Dubai and sweating like anything in the name of an Outfit of the Day photo :)

I wore my H&M mesh skirt for the first time ever today. £19.99 of girly goodness that feels surprisingly light and easy to wear. There are probably about 5 layers to this skirt, which lends a slightly 50's/60's vibe to it.

I did wonder what to wear this with. I tried it with a fitted shirt on top and it was all a little bit "Happy Days", with the 50's/60's theme taken to fancy dress status. So I did what I always do and played it very safe. Black body from Topshop and Tory Burch flats.

NOTE: The jacket stayed on only in air conditioned environments and for the seconds it took to take these photos. It is bloomin' humid today!




Excuse the sand at the tips of the shoe :) 


Yes, I was quite tempted to just dive into that fountain.


Skirt: H&M (current season and here is the link! Link!)
Top: Body from Topshop (which actually has poppers on the crotch area...ewww)
Jacket: Topshop (current season)
Belt: Hollister
Shoes: Tory Burch (a recent Outnet acquisition and boy do I love the gold hardware. I was always a bit skeptical of the Reva's and their puckering at the back of the shoe but I think that's what helps them keep their shape for a long time. I highly recommend!)
Bag: Chanel
Necklace: Tiffany & Co
Sunglasses: Gucci (someone asked for the code for these and it's GG 3155/S D28JJ 62 13 135!)

Book update!

First things first, I got a cheap but effective cover for my Kindle. After my What's in my bag post alot of you out there made me nervous about the fact I didn't have one. It's now safely resting inside a gaudy pink cover :) Phew!

Also I recently finished 2 books:

1) The Radleys by Matt Haig - if you are a fan of the vampire genre in any way, then I would recommend it. You will devour it (is that a pun...? :) within hours. It's an easy and humorous read that's neither as innocent as Twilight et al, nor as sexy-time focussed as True Blood. It actually presents quite an interesting take on the genre, with the story centered around a family of vampires in suburban England.
2) Grace Williams Says It Loud by Emma Henderson - I have to say this was a quite a difficult read. This is a no holds barred account of life in an institution and the narrator is Grace herself, a young girl who is physically and mentally impaired. The narrative is factual and unsentimental but the casual way she describes life in the institution just fills the reader with horror.

In light of the last book I have read I am lightening the load and focussing on trash. For example, I am currently reading about life inside the Playboy mansion by a disgruntled ex-Bunny. It's badly edited but salacious :) 

What are you reading at the moment? And glad to be writing this post - I missed it :)

Happy Friday!!

L
x

Sunday lunch

Here's the story.

This leather jacket haunted me for the best part of 3 months.

I kept seeing it on the Topshop website, embedded within a promo for their Snow Queen lookbook...and  yet it was never on-site or in-store. That infuriated me and I became (just) a little obsessed by the blush colour and the combination of tailored versus bomber style finishing.

Well hurrah! It did surface during a shopping trip in Manchester (with @kelanjo19, @gemsmaquillage and @nicolavc86). I bought it immediately and yet - this sounds silly - I have never found the right time to wear it. It's either been too hot or too cold and so it has languished in my wardrobe, occasionally fondled but never worn. 

Well I finally got round to it. And I love everything about it. The colour, the fit, the zips at the cuff, the braiding at the shoulders....I love it all. :)











Jacket: Topshop (last season)
Top: Urban Outfitters (current season and a lovely top to wear. I am not massively into prints but I was immediately attracted to this...as picture show above it is double layered with jersey and chiffon).
Jeans: Hollister (these are on there last legs....it's time to officially start the hunt for new jeans)
Jewellery: CC Skye double wrap bracelet, Sideways cross necklace.
Bag: Black Focco with a random River Island scarf tied round the handle.
Makeup: Chanel Orchidee rouge coco lipstick mixed with GOSH Darling (love this combo!), Liz Earle skin tint (which is probably why I am McShiny), Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel Illuminating Fluid (this stuff is AMAZING in photos...adds radiance/shine and colour in one), Brash shadow by MAC on eyes.

On another note

I wore my hair up pretty much the entire weekend. And I loved it. I got inspired by the tutorial you will find on the link below.

It's the easiest and yet the prettiest look I have come across. What I like the most? The messier it gets during the day, the better it looks.

I need some practice to get it looking as good as My's version but I will continue to try. Such a good option for those "no heat" days. 

NB: You don't need to speak Swedish to understand what she is doing... :) 


Hope you are all very safe and well. 9/11 is sad every year, isn't it? Any documentary or news item will always make me cry. 

x

L

What's in my bag

It was only after I photographed the contents of my bag that I realised how dull this post would be. It's all so neat and exact....and boring.

Give me a month though and this facade shall fade - revealing a host of less inviting contents. Think empty chewing gum wrappers, receipts from forgotten purchases, random coffee shop loyalty cards, promo flyers that I take just because I feel sorry for the people dishing them out and about 5 hair ties and hair pins.

Right now though, this is the stuff that sits in my bag:



From top to bottom, left to right;

* Bag - surely needs no introduction. I am so proud carrying this it makes me sick.

* Miu Miu purse - a gorgeous grey blue complete with pink lining. Happiness in a wallet. Yes, there is such a thing.

* Gucci sunglasses - current season and purchased at the beginning of the summer. These were a good buy - a soft cat eye and a perfect fit. I do however resent the size of the Gucci container so I admit to being reckless and travelling without it. I try and keep them either on my face or on my desk.

* Montblanc pen - my handwriting is far neater with a Papermate or a Parker pen but wielding this in a meeting is fun.

* Smythson's notebook - This says Blah Blah Blah on the front. That alone was reason to buy it. I seem to always have one of these little notebooks. They are either Christmas gifts or impulse airport purchases - more often the latter.

* YSL Rouge Volupte in number 1 - fished this out and have worn it for the past week. I had forgotten how truly wonderful the colour is: and how bloody drying the formula is. Ah well, I shall use it up and then when it's all gone, repurchase Hue lipstick by MAC for about the 10th time!

* Balenciaga perfume - parma violets and musk in a dinky sized 30ml bottle. Love.

* Calgon Cotton Candy body spray - a saccharine sweet body spray that I am becoming very addicted to. A shot of sugar that is good to liberally spray morning, noon and night.

* Bath and Body Works Hand Sanitizer - Warm Vanilla Sugar plus alcohol. It's like cleaning my hands in flavoured vodka :)

* Chantecaille Just Skin in Glow - One of my favourite base products of all time. Fantastic coverage and a natural finish. The price is insane but I am enjoying it whilst it lasts.

* Tissues - what interesting quip can we make about tissues? Well....nothing really. They are tissues. But they do have a pretty rose print on them. Fin.

* Extra chewing gum - got to have some kind of mint at all times. I will also admit to doubling up - two pellets at a time. Oh yes! Maxing the mint.

* Phones - an iPhone and a Blackberry. Do I need both? No. The Blackberry is soon out of contract so I will not be renewing that. I will admit however to missing BBM...

* Kindle - I can't express how much I love my Kindle. I adore it. Instant downloads and a great ergonomic design make it a joy to use. Yes I do have the iPad2 but that for me is about entertainment - watching films/TV - and maybe conducting the odd presentation on for work/meetings. It's not about reading. In fact try reading on the iPad - it's not impossible but compared to the Kindle it's a poor, high contrast, labour-intensive experience that becomes hard on the eyes. It's not what it was truly designed for. The Kindle though...well if you don't have one, you need one :)

Note: I failed to include my keys but don't worry all you missed is....well, keys ;)

If anyone would like to do a post like this I would love to read it - in fact if you have already done one on your blog put the link below :)

x


Cheap Monday Shirt Dress

My favourite dress du jour. (and perhaps Frankie Sandford's too?)

By one of my favourite brands.

Yep, Cheap Monday creeps into my wardrobe once again :)

This is one of my favourite kinds of pieces. It's soft and languid, mixing masculine colouring, androgynous style - with a wickedly short hemline. Soft and easy, wear it with flats or heels, tights or bare legs....this is going to work whatever season.

That sounds like a bloody sales pitch but honestly, I would wear this every day if I could. (Confession: I wore it all weekend)

To be honest I would have preferred to wear it with my black Focco but The Pink Bag was all I could think about... Obsessed I tell you!

Anyway, here is the dress...it's a charcoal colour. In the outside picture it has a navy tone to it - strange as I don't see that in real life. The camera never lies....well, maybe sometimes it does :)







Dress: Cheap Monday
Bag: Miu Miu
Tights: Wolford
Shoes: in outside picture, Christian Louboutin. Also wore it with loafers which worked nicely and allowed me to walk.
Sunglasses: Raybans
Nail polish: Caffeine Fix by Sephora-OPI (LOVE this colour. Thought it would be a flat brown but actually has a purple undertone and reminds me of an old No. 17 number called Dragon's Blood...anyone remember that?)

Don't do as I do

a) I would like to wear this with a baby blue/lilac or grey American Apparel skinny belt. I just wore the tie belt that it came with - next time I am changing it up.
b) I skipped tights one day and nearly gave everyone a full frontal. Big knickers required when wearing outside.
c) I got this in Urban Outfitters for about £75. Don't be a mug and do the same. ASOS have it for £66 and whilst that sounds like a lot I bloomin' love it so I think it's well worth it :)

Link!

Next post will probably be a What's In My Bag. I think it's best to do this now before I drown the lining in receipts and pen ink :)

Hope you are all well!

L

Unfinished Business: The Miu Miu Vitello Lux in Light Pink



Okay so this post is a bit showy-offy....but quite frankly, if we were reviewing this blog content as a whole we could say the same about every single post. It's about shopping and this is what I got :)

The Story

For 2 years I have thought about this bag. I first spotted it on tumblr and became obsessed. It fitted the bill:

1) Girly - but still with a pretty smattering of hardware.
2) Practical - it can be worn as a crossover, drapped over the arm or shoulder (and it can also house a lot of my daily necessities!).
3) By MiuMiu - a brand I have always loved: quirky, whimsical and by Miuccia Prada who I admire for business acumen and design sensibility and...
4) Pink!

My first foray into the Vitello was with the blue/grey version I have featured in many a post. I got it from Selfridges and fell in love with the colour. It's a great versatile shade that goes with pretty much everything. I loved it so bloody much I got the matching wallet.

So whilst I have no regrets about that I have to admit that the pink was always in my mind.

For me it was unfinished business. I always knew that at some point I would get it. And finally I plucked up the courage to just go for it...

I think the Vitello is just one of those designs that you fall in love with. If you are a fan it's pretty hard to find any other bag that fits the bill in the same way and so be warned....you will give in to temptation sooner or later :)

The Unboxing

I ordered mine online and it arrived, via Italy, in about 5 days. The colour was as expected - a gorgeous cool-toned pink with a nod to pale lilac.

NOTE: The most realistic interpretation of colour is in the outside shot. Sometimes it photographs more peach or pink or lilac toned when indoors and when natural light is sparse or dark.

Here goes!

1) Reviewing the delivery box - even this looks pretty.


2) Bubble wrap shielding - fascinating picture but I promise this gets better :)



3) A bag within a bag within a bag...and it's all so pink and pretty and pink and pretty and....



4) Releasing the ribbon from the shopping bag - ooh the suspense. *Intake breath*



5) Pulling out the dustbag - the Angels sang.



6) The dustbag opens...



7) ...and here she comes...



8) All hail the bag - and hold her aloft like Excalibur!



9) Rip off protective foam...



10) ...and rip out the stuffing.



11) ....and finally - pose



12) ....in all her glory :)







Needless to say I am elated and wore it out today...see how the colour changes in bright natural light? Much more gorgeous!



More of that tomorrow...

If you are considering this bag then you should know this:

1) It has a shiny leather finish. I like that, you might not.
2) It will scratch eventually....it's just the finish of leather and over time it will look "used". Don't get me wrong - it won't look battered or lose it's colour but expect a little softening and the appearance of the odd scratch. This might be a no no for you.
3) I can just about put a 15inch MacBook in it (the larger version that is) but it's a push. Better to be kept for everyday essentials rather than business related stuff.
4) If you love the colour family of this bag but can't justify the expense right now - get the grey Focco. It's a beautiful shade that although not identical, hints at similar pantones.
5) Here is the link to the one I purchased! :)

Link!

I want to walk round hugging it.

I have to say, talking purely vacuously, there is nothing better than a new handbag, is there? :) 
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