Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Makeup inspiration...Carey Mulligan

Image via Pinterest

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Flash back to Summer...Nausheen Shah

The beautiful Nausheen Shah during London Fashion Week, who is always so gracious and happy to stop for photos.Visit her blog here.

Images- personal

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Styling a Tulle Skirt

Last night my friend Catie and I were trying to decide where to go out for a meal. Her husband suggested Pizza Express. After several seconds of silence, I responded 'Well...I'll be wearing a tutu, so I think Pizza Express is out.'

In case you hadn't noticed, tulle is kind of a big deal right now. There's a plethora of tulle skirts in a varying colours, lengths and price ranges to choose from.  I was so OBSESSED with buying this skirt, that during Black Friday weekend I scoured every Topshop within a 10km radius of Oxford St trying to get it. I even went into the fitting rooms and asked to inspect their rails. By the grace of god, I found one (it's sold out now) and I intend to wear the shit out of it.

Styling a tutu can be tricky. One wrong move and you could end up looking like an extra in a particularly cheesy panto. These are my tips:

  • Keep it simple on top.  With length and volume on your lower half, you need to keep the balance by avoiding anything fussy on top. Choose a simple knit or a crop top.
  • Choose a dark shade like navy, black or green to make it winter appropriate
  • Go for a ladylike approach and pair with a classic pump heel
  • Channel Courtney Love by choosing a chunky ankle boot

  • Go too princessy. A smattering of sparkle here are there is festive season appropriate, perhaps an embellished knit or Art Deco inspired necklace. If you escalate it to tiara, you have gone too far
  • Wear sneakers. You are not Lily Allen circa 2006
  • Opt for anything shorter than knee length. You want to keep it adult, not mother/daughter dance recital
  • Wear tights. The hint of bare skin beneath is key to the sex appeal of a tulle skirt

Monday, December 1, 2014

Dreyer vs Worsley...would you wear leather pants?

Ruthie and I enjoying some London sunshine this Summer. I'm not actually topless...

I always thought my darling friend Ruthie and I agreed on most things. When I suggested we should write some blog posts offering different opinions on life's important topics- men, dating, decorative scarves- it became apparent this is not the case. Good news for the blog post concept, certainly a shock to our friendship. 

So, what may you ask, is the first hard hitting subject we've decided to tackle? Leather pants. The important question- will covering your stems in cow hide make you look cooler than the entire cast of The Matrix combined, or are they work of the devil? I am on the pro leather side, so let's start here first.

I have been buying the same pair of pleather Topshop trousers every year for 4 years. Except that unfortunate year they decided to put the zip down the back, which was a weird choice, because it made my butt look like a basketball. These pleather trousers are the single most flattering item of clothing I have ever put on my legs. They make them look long and slender, and in my head I think I'm Kate Beckinsale. Or at least Kate's awkward cousin. Here are the major pros to cow legs.
  • Some of history's coolest women have rocked leather- Catwoman, Trinity, all the female characters in X-Men. For pretty much all of Season 3 Buffy wore leather pants in an array of bad ass colours, like red and black and bottle green. So I guess what I'm saying, leather pants will make you a superhero
  • They wipe clean. I often spill things, I drink a lot of beverages while walking or on public transport, and I work in makeup. All reasons you want clothing you can take a good old paper towel and some Dettol spray to. Honestly, child care workers should wear these pants.
  • Bikers wear it, and for good reason. If you fall off a motorbike, leather protects your skin from damage. Or in my world, if you fall from 6 inch platforms onto the pavement, you're less likely to graze a knee.
  • Leather pants have the ability to elevate other items in your wardrobe, like this jumper you might remember. French bulldog jumpers, a dorky Christmas sweater with 2 kittens riding a Reindeer, a Hanson MMMBop tour tshirt...all of these things can be elevated to ironic status with the simple addition of leather pants. Try them with a fleece trackpant...you take your social life and reputation into your own hands.
OK sure, things get a little hot in the morning commute, and they can be a bit squeaky (seriously, it does raise the question how Buffy managed to sneak up on people), but it's totally worth it. Leather pants are a wardrobe staple that go with everything. Seriously, if they're good enough for Elle MacPherson on a school run, they're good enough for me.

This Winter, I'd opt for jeans or fleece-lined snow pants, before I'd put on a pair of leather pants. Leather pants are the single most impractical kind of pants. First of all, there is no way to wash leather pants. Much like that space behind your refrigerator or inside your toaster, leather pants are impossible to clean. I hate that idea. It's taken me a while to get comfortable with wearing jeans more than once before washing, and there is no way I'm about to encase myself in leather filth-scraps. 

This brings me to my next point: swamp ass. You WILL desperately need to wash these heinous slacks. I have never produced more ass-sweat than I have while wearing leather pants. It feels like wearing a Ziploc bag (that's a plastic sandwich bag to non-Americans) as underwear. You will be extremely moist in leather pants, ESPECIALLY if you are wearing them to a club, or actually any place where you may need to do movement of any kind.

Finally, leather will highlight your cellulite like nobody's business. Think about that Ziploc bag metaphor and now imagine the bag stuffed with cottage cheese. Yep, leather pants are going to reflect the light and make your cellulite look 5D. Which is really going to detract from any heroin-chic, badass Sandy from "Grease" look you were going for.

Which camp are you in? Team Ruthie and her ziplock knickers, or team Ebony and her teflon trousers?

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

They ain't your Mum's jeans...

Well, it's cold. Which means I have a cold. It also means, I am about to spend the next 3 months with my legs encased in either leather trousers (cue uncomfortable Tube rides balanced out with general bad assness associated with leather legs) and jeans. Despite being a notorious commitment phobe, when it comes to my jeans I am monogamous like a Swan. Or a Gibbon, my favourite monkey.

Currently, like all the boys from One Direction, I am rocking nothing but skinnies. Rip them, tuck them into ankle or mid calf boots (but not knee or thigh people, that look is over. Please let it go), wear them in varying shades of Winter black or grey, or be bold and go for white. If you're a Swan like myself, go for the Acnes or the J Brands. More of a denim flirt? Zara, Cheap Monday or Topshop have what you need. 
From top- Cheap Monday £49 / ACNE Studios approx £180 / Topshop £40 / J Brand £174 / Zara £30

Sunday, November 16, 2014

5 things...why your love is incovenient to the general public

Despite evidence to the contrary (this post included) I am actually all for love. I'm not going to spend an enormous amount of time elaborating on this point, as people far more talented and articulate than I am have used their considerable talents to celebrate love in various artistic forms. Certainly love has provided the inspiration for some of my favourite things- Variation On the Word Sleep by Margaret Atwood, one of the most glorious poems ever written. Any song by Fleetwood Mac, a band that have made the long journey from joyful love to hate, from spite to indifference, all the way back around to forgiveness. I even have a Landslide inspired tattoo. Finally the most obvious, Romeo and Juliet. Particularly Baz's version, which slays me every time and makes me do that weird air sucking kind of crying that is both mortifying and cathartic. I last watched this on a 13 hour plane flight. Mistake.

So when I tell you that your love is a royal pain in my ass, please understand it is constructive criticism. I need you to know that I am SO happy for you. I am thrilled you get to lie in bed together on a hangover free Sunday morning, drinking coffee and being smug about the fact you are so drunk on your own love that you didn't have to get shit faced last night. It's so super lovely you have found each other amidst a sea of lonely, lost souls, especially in an impersonal city like London. However I would appreciate if, when you are out in public, you could tear your eyes away from each other for a minute to think about the fact I'm in a hurry. So here it is, 5 reasons why your love is really incovenient.

1. Hand holding. People...unless your other half is a toddler, a puppy or a pensioner, I am pretty sure they are able to walk unaided for a few minutes. I get that a single second not touching your so called 'bae' feels like you're being sucked straight into hell, but after almost 3 years of being single, I feel equipped to assure you that you are gonna be OK.

2. Extreme hand holding. What I'm talking about here, is when you are walking about a metre apart and holding hands. Usually there's a level of arm swinging involved which would not be out of place if you were running happily through a field of tulips or daisies or something. If I am out for a run, this is particularly infuriating. When I make the decision to exercise once a week, I take it seriously enough that I don't want the experience to be stopping and starting like I'm in a McDonalds drive through. Because then I feel like getting a McDonalds, which is counter productive. Going forward if you are doing this, I will have no option but to take Jules' advice and burst through your joined arms like a finish line ribbon and shout 'I made it! 50th place, that's a personal best!'

3. Enjoying how the city is just SO much more beautiful because you have each other. That sunset behind the Shard is friggin splendid, I agree. If I wasn't so caught up in my need to get home from work to enjoy my meal for one in front of Buffy re-runs, I too would probably stand in quiet contemplation and have a little weep. However, it is cold and I didn't bring gloves, so if you could please stop blocking the path, take a photo and enjoy it later in the privacy of your love nest, that would be great.

4. Walking one mile an hour. When we were in Sicily my step mother told me that back in the glory days of the mafia, the super slow evening promenade was an intimidation tactic. So if I wanted to let somebody know who was boss, all I had to do was take a geriatric paced stroll past their house (presumably wearing a wide brimmed black hat and smoking a cigar) and they would know I was watching and waiting for them to make a wrong move. I'm gonna go out on a limb and suggest that you are your beloved walking at a pace not unlike bank holiday traffic on a motorway, is NOT because you are trying to intimidate the family of squirrels in the park. Unless they stole your picnic, they are cheeky mofos like that.

5. Intense kissing and hugging (verging on dry humping) on the tube. This isn't really inconvenient, so much as just gross. However, if it's after 11pm, I'm giving you a pass. You're probably drunk, so I support your attempts to get lucky. When it's a Tuesday and a school night, we can't be up all night to the sun, so power to you for getting some before the last tube.
Image via images-search.com

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Life saver from Lush

Since August my skin has been pissing me right off. It's always been more sensitive and temperamental than PMS week at the Kardashian house, but it's really gone above and beyond to get right on my nerves. It's been upsetting not just for me, but also for the people I care about (namely Soph and Jules) who have to put up my incessant and self centred moaning about my eczema. 

Nothing seemed to fix it either. At one point I was slapping on some cream (instructions, ingredients and prescription all in Danish) that I stole from Soph, who got it from her mother,. The stuff was so potent it actually burned off my eyelashes. Note: you aren't supposed to put crap like that on or around your eye. Note: I did not follow this note. 

So I turned to my beloved Lush Oatifix, with its bananas and oats and vanilla, truly like a nourishing breakfast for the face. This calmed it RIGHT down. It talked my skin off the ledge, but for some reason it just couldn't get it to climb back inside the window. So there I was, covering it with more and more makeup, exacerbating the problem. Finally, I stumbled back into Lush, desperate for a solution. 
'Help me!' I cried to the lovely Lush employees. (I didn't, I just politely and calmly asked for their advice), and in response to my plea they sold me...a weird cake of brown stuff, AKA Full of Grace.

The enthusiasm with which their ambassador talked about the product was typical Lush- no sales pitch, just genuine love and a healthy dose of knowledge. I only needed to hear the words 'rose', 'calamine' and 'chamomile' to feel instantly calmer. So I took it home and, with trepidation well known by us sensitive skin types, rubbed it against my face. When I try something new, I never really know if I'm going to wake up flawless aka Beyonce, or burned and upset like Harvey Dent. However, I am pleased to report that after only 2 nights use, redness is drastically reduced and almost gone; the itchiness ceased, AND...my makeup sat on my face perfectly all day. 

Normally I would wait a few more days to write such a glowing report, as skin needs time to adjust to new products. Typically you want to give yourself at least 28 days to make a final decision on a skin care product, giving your body and skin time to complete a full cycle. However, Lush never let me down. To see such a dramatic change in only two days...I'm confident I'll stand by my word. 

With such a rich blend of oils, inevitably there is some stickiness on my skin, but nothing too heavy and not at all uncomfortable. Despite the richness of this product, I'm not worried that it will cause my skin to break out in spots either (calamine also controls greasiness they tell me). Once my skin has settled right down, it may not be my every night choice. I do love the feeling of a serum and cream on my skin, but I can see myself using this a couple of times a week to keep the nasties away. Recommended to anyone in need of some hydration and TLC, especially those with sensitivity. 
Images via Lush

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Mittens on my mind

I wear a lot of rings. Like...a lot. Sometimes up to 20. This presents many challenges in day to day life. Like the fact I have to shove them all in my bra or a pocket when I wash my hands (when you lose a Tiffany ring down a sink, you learn some tough lessons), or when my stag ring gets tangled up in my headphones or causes my hand to get stuck in my handbag. I can't carry anything in my left hand when I wear my Bjorg spine ring, what with my inability to bend my finger and all. One wonders why I would bother, but you know, I got a Liberace vibe happening and I like it.

Then Autumn comes around, and all of the above pale into insignifigance compared with the fact that I can't wear gloves. My hands get cold, they get chapped, and as the months roll on and winter descends, I'm decorating the hands of an Ent (those giant tree people from Lord of the Rings).

Mittens. They are my only solution. Sure, I'll feel like I'm about 4 years old. Fine I won't be able to use my iPhone like those crafty mofos buying the Muji Touchscreen Gloves. Yes, ultimately if I get an itch on my face, I will resemble a cat cleaning itself when attempting to scratch it. But I'm ready for it, because the alternative is frost bite. Also, you can get some pretty damn beautiful ones these days. I could rock a playful Pug vibe from ASOS a paw print from Topshop. Even Net-A-Porter are stocking some furry fancies from Coach (left) and Karl Lagerfeld (right). Bring it on Winter.

Top- Topshop / Middle- ASOS / Bottom- Net-A-Porter

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Navy + Grey...London Fashion Week

I met this lovely lady outside the Topshop show during London Fashion Week in September. I love the navy accents against the grey. Understated and super, super cool. 
Image- Personal

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Hey Mr Tangerine Man

Speaking as someone who spent the entire Summer wearing MAC Morange lipstick (killing it, by the way), I am loathe to let my ray of sunshine go as we head into winter Thankfully, as evidenced by the fashion set at London Fashion Week in September, all things citrus are still a key trend for the colder seasons. No need to feel like you're the saddo clinging to your last Summer holiday, take inspiration from the fallen leaves and try soft or burnt tones. They still pop against Autumn's palette of navy, forest green and grey.

There's something for every price range too. For the minted amongst us, the Saint Laurent Ligne Classique Y Tote from Net-A-Porter will see you through the season in style. For the rest of us? Never fear, there are plenty of purse friendly ways to decorate throats, feet and hands. 

My pick for the easiest Autumn update? Julep's Brielle Varnish. A creamy, dreamy orange in their revolutionary formula. The wonderful people at Julep donate a percentage of their proceeds to organisations that support and empower women, through their Powered by Girlfriends program. So you can do good, while looking good. Make sure to check out Julep’s full range of nail polish colors!

 Streetstyle images- personal / Varnish- Julep/ Scarf- Topshop / Bag- Saint Laurent at Net-A-Porter / Necklace- Zara

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Suddenly, it's Autumn

Last weekend I went to Denmark to see Soph, and when I got back Sunday...BAM it was Autumn. While I'm sad to retire my American Apparel short shorts, it does feel quite nice being back in a coat. Plus, Autumn leaves, the promise of mulled wine in the not too distant future, extremely chapped hands...I mean, it's just all so romantic. Thankfully I had done the ground work and broken in my new boots (which are now on sale by the way, and whilst I'm sad for me, I'm happy for everyone else because they're friggin comfortable boots). I've also had this amazing Topshop trench hidden away in my closet since the June sale. You can't buy it anymore (much to the dismay of our waitress at Breakfast Club this morning), but check is definitely here to stay, and they've made some similar lined versions for Winter. 

After brunch I convinced Jules to take my photo on Trinity Street. We've been watching a lot of America's Next Top Model, so I tried the leg kick ala Jordan Guess shoot, Season 2.0 Semi Final. I'm not sure I nailed it, but then again I've never been able to smize without looking like one of those subliminal stills from The Exorcist, so I guess it's not surprising.

                                                                  Coat, Topshop                    Ankle Boots, Kurt Geiger

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

This H & M jumper...Discuss

I walked past this H&M jumper 3 times in Selfridges yesterday, and every time I visited it, the numbers on the rack slowly dwindled until finally there was but one left...in my size. I battled with my decision to purchase it, I asked people who walked past, I whatsapp'd my friends, I picked it up...I put it down. I muttered out loud to myself, unafraid that other shoppers might hear. The big question on my mind- 'Is it awful, or is it F-ing genius?'

I still don't know. I own it, but I'm unsure. There's just so much going on here. I mean we have an animal motif, which I have never shied away from. However this bad boy has sequins, beading AND large green jewells. Now, I love a day sequin, but even I'm wondering, is it too much? What message does it send? That I'm going to be on the next season of The Undateables? Does it also say 'I live in my parents basement?' or 'I spend my Saturday nights doing macrame and listening to Michael Buble'?

I can't imagine wearing it in any situation and being taken seriously, unless I'm at an over 60s Bingo Night. I certainly can't wear it to work, nobody is taking feedback on sales targets from Joan Collins' senile 3rd cousin. I can't wear it on dates, I'm pretty sure I don't need to explain why. The gym is out of the question because if a sequin came loose on the treadmill and got under my foot, I could seriously injure myself **Note: I don't have a gym membership. I think about getting one every day, but then I forget when I'm on the couch watching Bake Off**

So when does one wake up in the morning, pick up the French Bulldog jumper and think 'I am going to make friends and influence people wearing you!'?

The jumper definitely raises way more questions than it answers. I mean, I'll be wearing a jewelled jumper featuring a dog ALSO WEARING A JEWELLED JUMPER. This thing is The Matrix. Hang on, no wait, it's Inception. Oh my god, the jumper is Leonardo DiCaprio. 

Maybe I should keep it.
Jumper £35, H&M