Monday Must-have: Your Christmas Party dress


Dress, Marks & Spencer, £45

This year I’m looking for a Christmas dress that doesn’t break the bank as it’s likely I’ll wear it for all of 5 minutes before losing patience and opting for something more baby friendly. I was pretty taken with this gorgeous tulle number from M&S which at £45 fits the bill perfectly. The deep v-front is loose enough to pull down for feeding and I’m thinking it’ll look great with a jumper over it on colder but festive days if I want to dress up and look fancy sometime. It’s the nod to the festive season my Winter capsule needs so look out for it featuring again here soon…

Love,
Rebecca
xo

What to Buy: December

Morning Readers!

I’m back again with the last “What to Buy” of 2014. I find December such a magical time. In years past, my Hubby and I would always go on holiday in the first week of December and come back around the 16th/17th, and whilst the winter sun was welcome, we always lamented missing the build-up. Working in a big city makes things very festive with brass bands and Carolers welcoming you at the station when you arrive in the morning, not to mention the Christmas Lights, and I always feel I ought to dress according to the season. Here then, is my round-up of things to buy, not only for the cold weather (wow, the temperature has REALLY dropped), but for the magic too ;)

Metallics

Blue Skirt / Silver Skirt / Foil Sweatshirt / Gold Trousers

Subtle, or a bit more in your face, something with a little bit of bling is a sure-fire way to light up the season. As I mentioned back in my November “How I Wore” post, this skirt is a really nice way to introduce the trend, and I also love these trousers. Available in limited sizes on line, when I went in-store, there were plenty. Wear with something red to really get into the Festive spirit!

Sequins


Trousers / Dress / Jacket

Who doesn’t like a little bit of sequin at Christmas time? From dainty embellishment to full on glamour for your Christmas Party, there’s something for everyone out there. The magpie in me is drawn to these trousers, but I also love this throw on coat. Perfect for office to after-work drinks!

Red

Jumper / Shirt

Nothing says Christmas more than red. I always used to wear something red on Christmas Day, a tradition I picked up from my Mum whose favourite colour it is, and it’s something that has stuck with me. I’m in love with the Uniqlo Extra Fine Merino Jumpers and one in Red is firmly on my Christmas list – I tend to wear the Mens small as I like the fit better. If you aren’t one for wearing a lot of red in your wardrobe choices, then a nice introduction with a red lip or nail is a good idea.

Winter Boots


Lace Up Boots / Fur Lined Boots

Rebecca started my thinking about these with her post on the delicious Ugg’s, but I have also found some other options for something that is essential over winter. Warm, partly stylish, but practical feet, especially when there are children in tow, are a must. I really like these Ilse Jacobsen ones, as well as these Zara Fur Lined bikers – a very good deal for leather at under £100.

Novelty Clutch

Pink / Yes No / Washing Powder / Chocolate

Honestly, you can’t sneeze without seeing these in all the shops. They are a fun way of updating an outfit if your budget doesn’t stretch to something new for your Christmas Party. I’d quite like Santa to bring me a Kate Spade license plate one ;)

So are you feeling Christmassy yet? I’d love to see if any of you wear any of the above as part of the #FFFestiveFun challenge ;) You won’t see me and what I’ve been wearing at the end of December, as in usual FF style, there won’t be any posts between Christmas and New Year, but I look forward to 2015 and seeing what will be around in the store to share with you all. So, all that remains is to wish you all very Merry Christmasas, and healthy, happy and prosperous New Year’s!

Erin xx

Spotted: Party Feet

Today’s #FFFestiveFun prompt is ‘Sparkles’ and so it’s the perfect time to share the perfect shoe for your party feet!


Lyrics by Aaron Smith, Shoes from Marks & Spencer

They from M&S, they’re £35 and if you have ever fancied a pair of glitter heels but not wanted to splurge, then now’s the time. As an aside, they also have a very practical and on-trend block heel which will make them more comfortable and easier to walk in, if you happen to be out of practice like me. ;)

Love,
Rebecca
xo

How to Wear: November

Morning Readers!

We are now less than a month away from Christmas. Really?! I feel like I’ve wished this year away due to things that have been happening both at work and at home, so I’m really looking forward to slowing things down a bit so we can enjoy the Festive Season countdown. Having a Toddler really does give you a renewed sense of joy for the season (if you ever lost it, I’m not sure I did!) and I’m loving creating all our own family traditions.

But, on to what I’ve been wearing. I’ve been quite bad at recording the outfits as I did last month, but here are my favourites – taking into account some of the items I had on my What to Buy list earlier this month.

First up – Over the Knee Boots. I had these from two years ago, with a wedge heel that I picked up from Zara. I love that they can be dressed up or down, and here I’ve dressed them down with jeans for work on a Friday.

Anyone that follows me on Instagram will know that I’m a big fan of stripes. Mostly these are the classic Breton combination but sometimes I do branch out and this dress is an example of that. A gorgeous Orange-Red, the same colour as one of my favourite lipsticks (Nars Red Square), this is actually a dress size bigger than I usually take but it was the last one left in the whole of London and actually, the fit it really nice as it’s a Kimono-cut anyway. Really easy to dress up or down. I’m wearing it for a day in the office here, but I have worn it to a dinner with bare legs and heels. I like to try and get as much wear out of my clothes as possible so tend not to “save” things for best (unless it’s a gown of course – not sure my fellow commuters would cope with that on a Monday morning!)

Now here’s a little sneak peak into something I’m going to be featuring in December – Metallics. I’ve been a big fan of the Whistles Carrie skirt since it was released but pleats really does nothing for my hourglass shape – especially at that tricky midi-length when you don’t have the slimmest of slim legs, which I don’t.

However, I found this skirt and it was love at first sight once it arrived – not to mention it was an £11 bargain. The wide elastic waist helps as I found I could pull it down slightly to sit at the top of my hips rather than my waist which helped make it work for my shape. Again, I’ve made it work-appropriate here with a jumper but it could very easily be glammed up too. It also comes in Gold (which I’ve bought too) and I can’t wait to wear it in the run up to Christmas, maybe even on Christmas Day if I’ve not worn it before that (my Christmas Day outfit always has to be new!)

I’ve had this skirt in my wardrobe for a few years now and it really fits one of the items I said you should look at buying in November. It was from the H&M Conscious collection and I love the drape that the silky fabric gives it. I’m wearing it with stripes for a different take.

There’s nothing like a bit of leather to add a bit of interest to your wardrobe and this Marks & Spencer Limited Collection shift from A/W 2007 still gives that. Although I’m breaking one of my rules of not wearing all black here, I’ve paired it with a Navy coat, and Navy and Black is a colour combo I’m really enjoying at the moment.

Finally, a casual outfit with the jumper I mentioned earlier this month. I had a Monsoon voucher, and there was a discount on it, so this beauty became mine. The wool is really soft, and even though I’m not a fan of a polo neck (my chest is not forgiving for a polo neck) this funnel neck is the next best thing. The embroidery really is lovely, and I love how the blue is picked out with the shade of these MIH Pheobe jeans. Sparkly shoes finish it all off. A great weekend outfit.

So, how have you worn November? Did you get your hands on any of the bits? I bought one of the Christmas Jumpers – can’t wait to reveal which during December ;)

Erin xx

Find Erin on Twitter @ErinLauraWalsh or Instagram @ShoeQueen79

What to Wear: On the Beach (when you just had a baby)

When I was pregnant I put on 2 stone. Not bad going at the time I thought, considering I certainly didn’t deprive myself and everybody tells you about how much of it is not just baby but placenta, fluid and the rest (I’m sure my boobs weighed an extra few pounds each…!) Post baby I lost 1 stone in the first 3 weeks, then it appeared the second stone wanted to come to Florida with me and was staying put.

At 3 months post birth, I wasn’t feeling too bad about it. Sure, if I looked at myself too long in the mirror I wasn’t that keen on my new shape, but equally, I was too busy and too realistic to expect anything else. Nor did I have any interest in dieting in those early weeks of breast feeding in case it affected the quality of my milk for Bea. That left me with a small problem. What on earth do you wear on the beach when you have just had a baby and are not feeling as confident as you usually would?

It wasn’t just about my weight, but the huge breast feeding boobs I was now lugging around, and although the stretch marks I had are largely faded, I didn’t want to show them off and add to any insecurities I had, or get them in the sun for that matter as that could have added to any lasting scarring. So I looked for a high waisted, bra-sized bikini (I really hate swimsuits as I get too hot in them) and headed to figleaves.com

Happily they had several high waisted styles and even strapless styles like I chose that are made for BIG boobs. Throw in a floaty sheer shirt for hanging round the pool and my maternity shorts (my itsy bits pre-baby cut-offs were just not going to cut it,) and I was sorted.

I wanted to share this mainly to suggest the bikini style I went for and recommend Figleaves (I bought a few styles, including a fold down bikini too that was nice but not quite as stylish, and their delivery/returns service was fab,) but also because there are lots of bloggers on the internet pinging back into shape post baby, which is great if you happen to be one of the lucky few who do the same. But if you’re not, then I wanted to show you how it really is and how you can feel good still in that amazing body that just made a baby, and one day will look like it never did.

Love,
Rebecca.
xo

Save or Splurge? Winter Weather Boots

November is flying by and already I’m thinking about my next capsule wardrobe. As I said I would update it in December I’ve already been looking at some warmer updates and evaluating how well certain pieces worked for me, what did and didn’t get used etc. One of the (few) things I promised myself I would buy was some warm, flat winter boots for walking in the cold and potential snow and I was particularly drawn to the new water resistant, (and they do some waterproof) UGG boots as mine have seen better days. They would be perfect for my lifestyle right now.


F&F double buckle boots £25 (Suede version £35) // UGG Sutter £240

Then I happened to spot a very similar pair in Tesco which looked pretty good for the very reasonable price tag. If I’m honest I’m inclined to splurge on this particular item as I know they will be in my wardrobe for years to come and do me good service, but if you want a quick update or are needing to spread the pennies thin right now, these could be the answer!

What do you think readers?

Love,
Rebecca
xo

What to Buy: November

Morning Readers!

I’m finding it really hard to believe it’s November already – October seems to have flown by in the blink of an eye. Also, I’m not sure about you, but the unseasonably warm weather has slowed my thinking about Christmas. Just last week I was in our garden hosting a Halloween party for 12 toddlers, none of which had coats on. However, true to it’s word, November is certainly feeling more wintery, so here are my picks of what you should be thinking about buying this month.

A Christmas Jumper

IMG_3980.JPG
Bird / Bauble / Snowflake / Metallic
Now I know it may sound premature, but I ALWAYS leave it to the last minute and never get my hands on the one I want. I remember last year seeing a Sweatshirt with Christmas Puddings strategically placed in Primark in November, and regretting not buying it as soon as I saw it on Holly Willoughby during Celebrity Juice. FAIL.

But… I’m not normally one for the “Novelty Jumper” so here are some that are Christmas themed, yet still tasteful (in my opinion). Thanks go to a very good friend of mine who pointed out the Joules ones to me ;)  I really like the Bauble one as it has a hint of Markus Lupfer about it without the price tag. The Snowflake one also comes in a more festive red, but I rather like the Navy for subtlety and the Bottle Green one well, this doesn’t just have to be for Christmas!

Moody Florals

IMG_3982.JPG
Trousers / Dress / Jumper / Skirt
I’ve noticed a fair few painterly dark and moody floral prints around, and being one of the trends for this AW there are some really nice ways to wear them. From some statement trousers (I LOVE THESE!) to a really easy to wear skirt that could be dressed up or down, now the weather is getting colder, something of this print would really transform your wardrobe. The tiny caveat in the above choices is the Jumper, but the floral embroidery on the sleeves and shoulders was just too beautiful not to include here.

The Blanket Coat

IMG_3983.JPG
Navy / Green / Multi-Coloured
Call it what you like – a coat, a poncho or a wrap – the “blanket coat” is a big statement for this season. Now, you could pullthis off by belting a large cozy scarf having draped it round your shoulders, but for some ready to wear versions, these are my High Street favourites. The checks bordered with grey marl is my favourite, perfect to wear over denim or black trousers, but the tassels and colours of the Per Una version take this trend to the letter.

Slogan Sweatshirt

IMG_3981.JPG
Kiss / Ciao BellaFeline /  Feminin
These aren’t going anywhere fast, and if you haven’t dipped into the trend already, now is the time to do so. There are some great versions available on the high street, meaning you can take your pick from something that perhaps is personal to you, to something a little more tongue in cheek. So easy to wear, they are the perfect finisher to your weekend uniform.

Over the Knee Boots

IMG_3984.JPG
Zara / Russell Bromley
Seemingly everywhere at the moment, the new wave of these boots is much easier to wear. A flat, or small block heel, the lust-worthy Stuart Weitzman 5050’s are still probably among the most coveted, but there are some brilliant (and most importantly) affordable high street alternatives. This Zara pair is amongst my favourites available at the moment.

So, will any of the above items be on your shopping lists this month?

Erin xx

How to Wear: October

Looking back at the outfits I’ve worn this month, I’m quite surprised to see that I’ve inadvertently been following a couple of themes. Mostly, I’m quite lazy in preparing what I wear on a daily basis, taking the time I spend in the bathroom of a morning to figure out my outfit. However this October, I’ve been following one of the many Blogger/Instagram challenges that are out there, this being a #nynystyleproject. It’s actually made me feel a little more prepared for the following day, and the prompts have certainly made me think about what I have in my wardrobe, rather than wearing new favourites on rotation, which is often the case.

I am though happy to report that I actually did practice what I preached earlier in the month and managed to squeeze in some jeweled and faux fur bits too.

Starting with shoes, as that is a passion of mine, mine during the working week have mostly been pointed. My new ASOS flats have worked really well for busy work days, and I really like the pointed lace ups I picked up from Next (another rule followed – Burgundy!). The R&B Vixen’s were a sale buy this summer but still a bit of a splurge.

Weekends have been a very welcome mix of casual. From rips and skaters with cashmere, to Wellies (love these short Boden ones) and my old-faithful Converse, it’s been really nice to dress down. I’ve also noted that Rebecca has mentioned Skaters and Wellington Boots this month too, so it’s nice to be able to wear these trends.

As I said though I have managed to squeeze in some Faux Fur and some Jewels. Faux Fur was worn as a gilet over a relatively simple outfit of a Breton top and coated jeans for a day of Agency meetings and an evening out, and then a Jewel encrusted shirt was worn on my birthday. My Mum always told me that you should wear something new on your Birthday and this fitted the bill nicely, being a recent J Crew (new with tags!) find on eBay for a tiny fraction of the original cost after lusting after this new season one but absolutely not being able to justify the price-tag.

Finally, I must share today’s outfit, if only to say BARE LEGS in almost November. What’s with that? I’m definitely not complaining. I’m a big fan of this inbetweeny weather. Makes my commute so much easier.

So what do you think Readers? Good choices for what is probably my favourite month of the year?

Erin xx

Find Erin on Twitter @ErinLauraWalsh or Instagram @ShoeQueen79

The Fash Flash: Wet Weather Style

Since I’ve been on maternity leave, I have barely used our car. Firstly I wasn’t allowed to drive post c-section and also, Chorlton has everything I need within walking distance. We also have one very old car that Pete uses to run to work and my three door car. So we can continue to re-do the house and because we don’t really need 2 cars right now, we’ve opted not to to buy a new one (as we had planned) when Bea arrived. Why am I telling you this? Because it left me in the market for a new coat. Coats are cheaper than cars.


Joules Waterproof Parka £129 // Petit Bateau Iconic Raincoat £132 // Boden Rainy Day Mac £119
Seasalt Snowdrop Coat £140 // Seasalt Dayboard 3 in 1 jacket £150 // Helly Hansen W Kirkwall Rain Coat £100

The particularly warm and dry September and most of October we have had meant I didn’t really think about my need for wet weather gear (who was I kidding, I live in Manchester!) But after getting soaked through to my skin pushing the pram back from a baby class 2 weeks ago, the search came sharply to the forefront of my mind. I wanted an actually waterproof coat, but something that also looked stylish. Perhaps unusually, I also didn’t need something super warm as I have a heavy duty waterproof(ish) parka that will be coming out in my winter capsule. This was more of a spring/english summer/autumn piece.

I actually made my first purchase (this Boat Coat) from Seasalt after being recommended their coats but I was really disappointed by how frumpy I felt in it. It just wasn’t ‘me’ and although I like lots of their coats, none really fitted the bill. Next I combed the slightly more fashion led brands like Boden and Joules and google searched, which led me to some surprisingly good looking options.


Boden Short Rainy Day Mac £110

After spotting someone wearing a lovely yellow coat I was reminded of my yellow raincoat from ASOS. Now that it’s stood the test of time and remained one of my favourite jackets, I decided it was time to invest in the real deal and purchased the yellow one above. It arrived yesterday and I LOVE it. It’s got grey detailing, playful oversized buttons, a fleece lining (not too thick, but cosy) and smart pleat detail to the back. I opted not to get a longer length as they just don’t suit me and I don’t mind getting my legs wet.

So readers, do you do rainy day outerwear? I like the Helly Hansen Mac here too for city types.

Happy weekend!

Love,
Rebecca
xo

Triple Temptation: Leopard skates

Dune Leopard skates // Bertie Leopard skates // Kurt Geiger Leopard skates

One of the trends I was a little unsure about trying this season that I took the leap with was my leopard skater shoes slip-on’s. I went for it due to their sheer practicality, and was absolutely right. I haven’t had them off and they go equally well with dresses or trousers. One additional benefit? If I happen to get caught in the rain, the sole is deep enough to prevent wet feet and splashes brush off th peony skin easily. Mine were an ASOS bargain, but these were all shoes I looked at. If you’re a little afraid of the full coverage at the front, try the Dune pair. They’re a slightly lower fronted style. The Kurt Geiger pair are a beaut if you feel like splashing out. The colours of the leopard print are really luxe.

Would you go for a skater shoe?

Love,
Rebecca
xo