How to Wear: September

What a glorious month September has been. Not only has the sun shone, we had a lovely family holiday in Cornwall as a foursome and it’s now the start of my favourite season of all, the Autumn.

The sunny weather has meant that sandals and espedrilles are still featuring in my shoe repertoire, even if worn with chunky knits and jackets – the perfect warm-ish Autumn attire!

Sandals and Espadrilles – Topshop; Jeans – J Crew; Jumper – J Crew; Culottes – Warehouse

My trusty kicks have also had several airings. I know they are essentially both white trainers, and both Adidas, but they make outfits look and feel very different, depending on which style I wear.

Adidas Cracked Leather Stan Smiths; Jeans – J Crew. Adidas Superstars; Chinos – Gap; Jumper, J Crew

We had a STUNNING week in Cornwall and we really lucked in with the weather. On the day we went to St Ives, the beach could have been found somewhere in the Caribbean (this is Carbis Bay for those who don’t know the area). Heaven.


The great weather meant that shorts were on the cards although starts to the day were still chilly. It was a great week and both boys, especially the biggest, loved it. We definitely have a beach lover on our hands ;)

The rest of the month has consisted of wearing the Coatigan I have mentioned before (I love how it goes with my woven wrap for Oscar, perhaps not deliberate…) and also getting dressed up for two Christenings on the same Sunday. The dress was really easy to feed Oscar in too.  Dress – Phase Eight; Shoes – LK Bennett

Finally I got to dress up again on Monday night this week for a work awards do. It felt liberating going out with only a small bag – my first evening away from No.2 since he was born.

Skirt –  c/o LK Bennett; Vest – Mango; Jacket – H&M (Sold Out)

I’ll be back next week with October’s “What to Buy” – coats will feature… ;)

Erin xx

PS: I was very excited about the Boden Icons launch that happened this month too and ordered a couple of pieces from the collection, but unfortunately, they’ve gone back.

Cardigan // Dress // Skirt

It’s nothing to do with the quality or fit, they are so well made with quality fabrics. It’s just I don’t think I’m quite ready to “fight for this love”…! (Although if the Mini version of the Brigadier skirt ever went into the sale, I may be tempted to order again…)

Save V Splurge: Work Flats

I am in desperate need of new work shoes and fell in love with these Boden pointed toe flats. They are smart, sleek and a little bit sexy with the addition of animal print. Oh and they’re £125. *gulp* Even as my every day shoe, (and I’m a big believer in cost-per-wear) there are so many other things I’d rather spend my money on right now…

So I was pretty pleased to spot these Clarks Pointed flats over the weekend. They’re very similar, well made and have a lovely cushy sole. And they’re £55. Win – win!

What do you think readers? Save or splurge?

Love,
Rebecca
xo

PS! There’s 20% off at Boden until tomorrow (Thursday) if you fell in love with the spendy option and want to soften the blow. ;)

What to Buy: September

September. The season of all change. It’s everywhere I look and read – people getting ready for the cooler months ahead and lamenting the end of summer. I actually love the Autumn. It heralds my birthday month (October) and I love those sharp Autumn days, where the sky is a crisp blue, the sun is low and the leaves are all sorts of yellow and rust. BEAUTIFUL!

A change in clime therefore warrants a different outlook on what to buy, especially since the new season drops are well and truly underway. I hope my roundup of what I think should be on your radar is helpful.

The Coatigan

 

Next / New Look / Boden

I’m not usually one for using faddy abbreviations, but this over-garment really has become a thing, and this year I’ve invested in one. Great for those chillier days before the real winter sets in, and thin enough not to get too hot if you are rushing around town or indeed carrying a baby around, a coatigan is great in-between piece. Choose one that is made from a “boiled” wool so that if it does rain, it won’t shrink or misshape, and make sure there is room underneath for a jumper – it’s all about the layering. I love the Boden one – best you can’ guess which one I have ;)

Gypsy Dress

 
Monsoon / Topshop / Zara   

Much like the Boho peasant blouse trend that led the way this summer, the Gypsy dress is going to be one that alludes me I think, although I do love seeing it on other people. There are many stores that have bought into this trend, Monsoon have done it really well with their new Heritage collection, so trying it out will be easy. Make sure the colours you choose are “your colours” – if pastels don’t suit you for example, steer clear. Zara and Topshop are good go-to options too. I also like the look of this M&S one.

Pussy Bows

  
Monsoon / House of Fraser / ASOS

All things 60′s are going to be around this AW, and the Pussy-Bow blouse is no exception. Keep it wearable by choosing a plain block colour to dress up high waisted jeans or or a pencil skirt. Super-chic. **Note of caution here for the larger chested amongst us… these work best on smaller cupped ladies – the bow can just add weight and volume where you don’t want it. There are options like this one though that start at the v on the chest – these would be best if you’d still like to buy into the trend.

Block Heels

   
Topshop / Topshop / Topshop / M&S

From flats this summer, to a heel that we can walk in and stay in all day – thank you shoe gods! Sticking with the 60s/70s trend, a block heel on your shoes or boots will see you well into the Autumn. The Topshop Mary-Janes are a great all-rounder for both trousers and skirts although admittedly the highest of the selection! I love the bow on the leopard print one – great for dressing up a pair of plain trousers.

Cropped Trousers

    
H&M / Zara

A hangover from the summer, don’t put those Culottes away just yet. The cropped trousers, especially those on the wider side, are the now trouser. Along with printed version in jewel colours they will be the staple of your AW wardrobe. Wear with block heels, or dress up even more with a high ankle boot.

So what do you think readers? Will you be investing in anything? Wishing you great Septembers’ – we are now on our holidays but I’ll be back at the end of the month. Until then… Enjoy your shopping! :)

Erin xx

Triple Temptation: Boden Coats


Sienna (stripe) coat // (Mint) Pea Coat // Cape

For the first time in what feels like forever, I am REALLY excited about he coming seasons clothes. I think it’s a combination of not being in maternity clothes/post natal and the fact that the summer has been so poor I almost feel like just moving onto crisp autumn days and cosy sweaters for chilly weather, but either way, I’m desperate to start shopping!

As it’s no capsule time yet, I’m trying to control myself, but instead I’m preparing – scouring ally he new collections and deciding what I want and then what will all work together as a great capsule. What I may have to make an exception for is a coat. ever one knows the best ones go early and this year I’m int he market for a new one. Boden’s new catalogue is fab but the coats and accessories are the standouts for me and although I don’t think these pictures do them justice, the options are brilliant. This cape is waaaay more vibrant than the stock image and the Peacoat I’d choose in Navy. Theres also a couple of amazing coatigans.

Have you got your eye son a new coat? I have no doubt Erin will have some amazing options to share soon too!

Love,
Rebecca
xo

What to Buy: August

Morning Readers!

So far August has been a bit of a disappointment weather-wise. I guess the typical British Summer is “shining” through although we do have the promise of warmer weather in the coming week. Fingers crossed!

The cooler days though have got me thinking about the Autumn and with it the drops of new season stock that are coming into the shops.

The items on this months list consist of some that I’ve posted before (but are still great buys if you haven’t indulged yet) and also some final sale buys which will see you into Autumn.

The Boyfriend Shirt

 Topshop / Boden

Specifically in blue, these shirts feature heavily on press images into Autumn. Worn over slim trousers to balance out the volume or easily tucked into a skirt, their versatility is great. I love the pale blue versions and the Topshop one here has added interest with a hip pocket. I’ll be wearing with Skinny trousers and flats.

Culottes

 Leather / Black

Huge for this current season, the culotte is a modest way to wear a skirt – no flashing here!

A leather pair like these Autograph ones will see you nicely into the Autumn but are equally wearable now with sandals. The Warehouse pair are a bargain. Limited quantities on line but plenty of sizes in store at both Warehouse and John Lewis. I’ve also seen them in House of Fraser for £15. Still a deal at under £20 and the weight of the fabric is just right.

For something a little different and a bit more for now, this jumpsuit is a find. Lovely fabric and print, and very easy to wear.

Suede Skirt

 Jaeger / M&S

This trend isn’t going anywhere and I am still favouring the Midi style. The M&S version is my go-to here but there are other versions to be had. The Jaeger one above is good for the discounted price.

For something even more achievable and for a nod to the trend in a different way, this New Look button through version is great and comes in three colours. Size up to get the fit right so the buttons don’t gape. This style reminds me of being in Year 10 (or Fifth Year as it was called when I was at school). I had a black version back then ;) I know it may be tempting but do try and get a real suede version. The faux one can end up looking a little cheap.

Embroidery

 Sequin Jacket / Skirt / Coverup / Shirt

You may think that embroidery needs to be kept just for summer. By and large this is true but I’ve spotted some very grown up, autumn appropriate embroidery in the shops. Whilst the White “jacket” from Zara above is a summer piece, there’s hope we may have an Indian Summer so this would act as an excellent coverup. The colours are stunning. For true Autumn though, the H&M Trend skirt is lovely – K.I.S.S (can you tell I’m a marketer?!) it with a black polo and boots (the jacket in this sold out immediately!) The magpie in me also loves the Sequins on the Mango trophy jacket. Again, something to throw over even the simplest of outfits for that WOW factor.

Statement Flats

 Studded / Snake / Red

Hurrah! The flat shoe is big for A/W15 and the more statement the better. Here are some that are a nod to that trend in that they can multitask for you – not too out there but still something a little different. I like the Aldo ones as a nod to the Valentinos I covet every year. Another good option are the Russell Bromley Chester Loafers. I picked up a multi-coloured suede bargain in the sales after covering for ages and can’t wait to wear them!

Enjoy the rest of your Month readers. Do share any purchases you happen to make!

Erin xx

What to Buy: July

Happy Friday Readers!

Apologies for the tardiness in getting this post up. It’s been very busy in the Johnson household. I’d forgotten how days can just morph into one whole week with a newborn – adding a toddler into the mix just seems to speed things up! Whilst I have been in a cloud of Toddler actives, Baby Cafe visits and NCT meet ups, I have been keeping an eye out on what’s in the shops, and there are few things I’d recommend getting your hands on this month – both for immediate use and “buy now, stash for later” wear.

To the Beach!

Since Summer holiday season is upon us, and for those of you who have not yet been on yours yet (that’s me, we are off on a Stay-cation in early September), there are some really nice beachy bits to be had, some of which are in the sale (bonus!).

Of course, as it’s me, stripes feature here, and I have to say that the H&M dress is lovely in the flesh. Cotton and just throw on, so perfect to put on post beach or for a relaxed day out. Not good for the Breastfeeding amongst us, but would be good to maybe keep for when you aren’t. I also couldn’t go without mentioning off the shoulder here – HUGE for this summer, the Mango dress below is easy to wear and a great nod to the trend.

I’d dropped a Hammam towel in here too as not only are they great for the beach (quick dry) they are chic enough to wear as a Sarong too. Make sure you buy cotton ones for authenticity. I use ours as throws on the bed as well.

Striped Dress / Hammam TowelOff the Shoulder Dress

Palm Print

I’m obsessed, and it seems as if I’m not the only one. I know I’ve mentioned this before on the blog (I did say I had an obsession) but there are some really nice bits around, not least the H&M print.

There is a gorgeously light cotton shirt in this print (sold out on line but some in stores), and I wore it on the beach last weekend with some crochet shorts when we went down to Dorset. A day on the beach I used to frequent as a child (Knoll Beach, Studland BTW) with my boys and Hubby. A lovely way to make memories of your old memories. Plus it’s National Trust and as members, parking was free ;) The playsuit here is a nice alternative. I also love the Topshop Jumpsuit, but I have one similar from a couple of seasons ago that I will dig out. Get this whilst you can as it is selling out fast.

Dress / Playsuit / Jumpsuit

Yellow

Set to be a big accent colour for AW15 (you only have to check out the J Crew looks from the season), you won’t go wrong in investing in some yellow to perk up outfits come the Autumn. The Karen Millen flats below also nod to the flat shoe trend that is BIG news for the winter. It will look great with the Pink that’s set to be huge, as well as lifting any neutrals you have – it’s always a winner with grey too.

Shoes / Skirt / Top

Pink

The rose tones of this season’s pink make it much more grown up and less “sweet” than has been seen on the runway in the past, and again, can be worn as the main part of an outfit, or as an accent. I really like the Clarks Bag – the leather is divine – and it’s a great size. Not available on line anymore though, but you may be lucky in store.

Bag / Shoes / Skirt

Monochrome

Again, a trend that’s set to be huge for AW15, from geometric prints to simple contrast, black and white it’s where it’s at. Easy to do in a simple top and bottom combo, there are some pieces around that would really work hard come the Autumn. The ease of the Stories silk-blend sweater is wonderful. Pair with slouchy white jeans and you are good to go. I also really like the Finery shoes – the trend nailed in one piece!

Shoes / Sweater / Dress

Wishing you all good rest of July’s. I do hope the weather becomes more summery and less Muggy – it’s doing nothing for my hair at the moment. Monica from Friends when she goes to Barbados springs to mind – LOL!

Erin xx

Summer Capsule Part 3: [Dresses & Round Up]

So I guess this is a kind of Friday Frock in disguise post. The final instalment of my capsule wardrobe! You all know I love a dress and I am finally taking full advantage of not needing 24/7 boob access. I was still feeding 2-3 times a day when I started this capsule and just took it off if I needed to feed when wearing a dress, now it’s just morning and evening so I can wear what I want. I have loved having dresses back in my wardrobe!


Denim dress // Digital print dress

This denim tencel blend swing dress was the first I bought and as my bust settles down it’s looking better and better. The Boden shift was a no brainer for a summer and holiday dress that I mentioned last week.


Jumpsuit // Maxi // Jumpsuit

The only dress that has been pulled from storage is this Gap maxi. I had it last year and hoped to wear it feeding but couldn’t in the end as it didn’t fit. It’s light and super comfortable so it’s a bit of a beater dress for everyday. The strappy tile print jumpsuit was bought when I couldn’t get hold of the Boden one, in hindsight I didn’t need it, but I’ve already worn it to playgroups when we had the recent heatwave and at £20 I don’t care about crawling on the floor!

So let’s do a little overview shall we?

I ended up with 27 pieces. (Don’t forget, this doesn’t include PJ’s, ‘loungewear’, stuff I paint or do the gardening in and exercise (ha!) kit.)

  • 8 work wear items (included in the below)
  • 10 tops
  • 3 knits
  • 6 dresses
  • 2 trousers
  • 2 jeans
  • 3 skirts
  • 1 shorts

And the prominent stores I bought from? Boden, GAP, Hush, New Look, Baukjen and Komodo – stocked in a local boutique and a new ethical brand find to me.

Here’s the whole summer capsule wardrobe 2015, en masse:


27 is just the number that works for me and I feel comfortable with. Last time I did this I ended up with 35 pieces but I included 8 shoes… so it’s exactly the same. I haven’t done that here – maybe I’ll post a selection on Instagram later today, and I forgot to shoot this top which should be included here. I’m really happy with what I’ve ended up with. I wear all of it, and fairly equally too, weather dependent. nothing feels like a waste or a splurge and my clothes seem to be striking a balance between being functional and fashionable.

I’d love to hear your thoughts and soon I will bring you a few posts on the pieces in action.

Have a fabulous weekend readers :)

Love,
Rebecca
xo

Friday Frock…

I know, it’s been a while, right?

I’m still working on a capsule wardrobe basis when it comes to buying my clothes (more on that next week) but this capsule I gave myself a free pass to buy something for Bea’s Naming ceremony as it was the only occasion we had looming and I didn’t know what size or shape I would be; (The battle of the baby weight continues…)


Dresses, all Boden – SALE NOW ON!

When crunch time came last week I really struggled. I’m still quite big on top, despite only feeding twice daily now, and my waist has definitely not returned to what it should be, but I have slimmed down a lot. This leaves we with the difficult situation that I need bigger sizes to fit my top half but the bottom halves tend to then be a bit big (which is what happened with the white floral dress here,) and some of my preferred T’shirt style shift dresses still look a bit tent like with my boobs.

I ended up going for this jumpsuit which I wanted to order at the beginning of my capsule but as is often the case with Boden it said it wouldn’t be delivered for 9 weeks. In actual fact it’s been in stock for a couple of weeks now which is probably more like 4-6 weeks after when I was looking so I might actually order next time. The V-neck is flattering, its well made and cool, and I actually felt fashionable! Yay! The other two were pretty but perhaps a bit too ‘wedding’ or ‘formal garden party’ for the occasion.

As used to be tradition… do share any frocks you have your eye on at the moment or think your fellow readers deserve to hear about!

Love,
Rebecca
xo

PS I actually kept the St Ives print shift too – it was a tad too casual for the Naming Day party, but I love it as a holiday and summer-in-general dress. ;)

How to Wear: April

Hi there Readers!

Since I’m still feeling OK, and there isn’t a Baby No. 2 quite yet, I’ll share what I’ve been wearing throughout April.

It’s been hard to wear the trends I recommended at the start of the month and to be honest, I now can’t wait to wear a few of the bits I’ve been saving for post-baby, so today’s post is more about how I’ve done Maternity wear.

Mostly, I hate the Maternity stuff that’s in the shops and I’ve favoured my regular clothes (with Maternity trousers) or things that have been made for me by my clever Mum.

Shift dresses and jeans with jumpers or shirts have been the uniform of choice. Dresses certainly worked fine for an Easter Sunday Mass and work events that I had this month. I have focused on the shoes though as it’s been a great excuse to get some wear out of the fabulous flats there are around at the moment (a caveat here are the Boden Alice Shoes seen in the picture above bottom left – heels for a few hours are manageable ;) !)

The gorgeous weather has also meant bare legs which has been wonderful. I love the fact that summer is just around the corner. These sandals from M&S tick the gladiator trend box and are really easy to wear. I went for the Beige but they come in a lovely Rust colour too. 

My last day in the office for a while was celebrated by dressing up a bit (despite the fact it was Friday and we usually dress down) in a Next Shift dress (my usual size) from last year and some Office flats (sadly sold out on line but I’m assured more are coming). A nice sunny yellow to start my Maternity Leave with :)

So… not that inspirational I’m afraid but I got through the month nonetheless.

Before I go though I wanted to share a fantastic service that Karen Millen offer and I experienced last week. The reason I know about this is because I had seen some press photos of their Atelier range, and some of their Brave New Stripe dresses leapt out at me.
I then received an email from them with a link to the collection and I decided to book a MyStylist appointment so I could take a peek at some of the pieces. Rachel was amazing. So friendly on email before, and during our session, nothing was too much trouble. She wasn’t even phased when I turned up almost 9 months pregnant!


I tried on a few things (with a bit of imagination!) but I loved the Atelier Brave New Stripes collection (funny that ;) ) especially this Navy and Cream silk dress and coat set. Below are some of my other favourites.

Red Maxi / Yellow Kimono
  Green Maxi

Trousers / Bag / Shoes

Rachel was warm, welcoming and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend her. She also even asked me before the appointment what my coffee order was, AND there was breakfast waiting. Amazing service!

Sitting and chatting to Rachel also made me look again at the Karen Millen collection as a whole and it opened my eyes as to how the brand has changed from the “studded and slinky” persona I had earmarked it with from the early 2000s. I’ll definitely be looking in there more now. If you are in the area then don’t hesitate to set up an appointment with her. She comes highly recommended!

So again, I may not be around in May but who knows!? Enjoy the long weekend we have coming up. We’ll be moving back into our house after four months of destruction and change. I. CAN’T. WAIT! :)

Erin xx

PS: The Boden Autumn Preview was also released last week. There are some pretty nice gems to be had ;)

How to Wear: March

Morning Readers!

So it’s the last day of March and I’m yet again left wondering where time has gone.

My Month has been a mixture of a short break away with Richard and Calum, lots of work on the house (our move-back-in-date-prior-to-number-two is, fingers crossed looking likely), a lovely pamper/sightseeing day in London with a great friend for her Birthday and of course work (with some fun events rolled in!).


P&O Britannia Launch // At Cowshed Shoreditch for a Pamper Afternoon // Portsmouth from the IOW Ferry on Mothers Day // One of the new bathrooms taking shape

I have managed to pick a few bits up this month that I’m going to be saving for the warmer weather in my “post-maternity/summer box, but more on that in a bit. On to what I’ve been wearing…

Baby Number 2 has definitely made more of an appearance this month and I feel about as big at this point (with about a month to go) as I did at the very end of full-term with Calum. Weirdly though I don’t feel like my legs or arms have changed (which they did last time) so some things are still fitting.

I’ve managed to try out some flares in the form of some Topshop Jessie jeans which I found on eBay in the Maternity style (although I’m finding that over and not under-bump style jeans are more comfortable this time round). These worked well with my Acne Pistol boots in Chestnut.

A pair of ASOS distressed boyfriend jeans (over-bump) have been my best friend and I’ve worn these loads, both for work on a Friday and at the weekends. These were a great buy at £19 in the sale (now sadly sold out but these are similar).


At the Sky Garden in London // ASOS Maternity Distressed Jeans

I also did have a Black tie event to go to but thankfully a Cos Black Sequin dress I found in the recent sale worked. I just sized up one size and as it was a shift anyway, it is fitted perfectly.

Other items that have seen the light of day are some Stan Smiths (proving I do practice what I preach!) and shoes without socks for the teasing warm spell we had mid-month.

Boden Lille Flats // Adidas Stan Smiths // New Look Flats // Office Flats

Finally, as per, stripes have been my friend.


With my team onboard P&O Britannia wearing H&M // DVF Chevron Knitted Dress (non-maternity) // Zara Light Sweatshirt (non-maternity)

Now quickly on to my “Summer Box”.

I’ve noticed more and more in retail that if you don’t get something you like straight away then you are in danger of it being sold out, never to return, and I do suffer from FOMO cases when it comes to clothes every so often. Here are the bits that have made my box this month (most of which you’ve seen before). I’ve bought my normal pre-pregnancy size knowing that I went back to it after Calum so there’s no reason (she hopes) that this won’t be the case again. Ah, the joys of hindsight ;)


Topshop Pintuck Blouse // M&S Denim Skirt // H&M Culottes // H&M Jumpsuit

So that’s it! I’ll be back after the Easter break with my What to Buy April.

There will be something on the list that I hope that you’ll subscribe to. I’ve tried loads of variations but it just doesn’t work on me, boo hoo. I’m going to have to live vicariously through you guys.

‘Til then then. Wishing you all a very Happy Easter that full of family and freinds time, Roasts and Chocolate.

Erin x