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

What to Buy: June

Morning Readers!

June is here and I’m so pleased to say that Bubba No 2 is as well (at last!). Oscar Theodore arrived on 27th May almost two weeks late. It’s wonderful (but tiring I’m not going to lie – you definitely forget!) being a new Mum again.

Calum couldn’t be more in love with his younger brother. It’s so lovely to see, not least because I’m an only child so watching this sibling relationship develop is one of the things Rich and I are looking forward to most.

Anyway, back to What to Buy this month. Summer should be well and truly upon us as we move through the month (I hear that it starts today so fingers crossed!) so here’s a selection of things to get you set for the warm days and nights that are (hopefully) ahead.

Espadrilles

Dune // Kurt Geiger // Mint Velvet // ASOS

Typically reserved (by me anyway) in the past to a beach shoe, the straw-soled espadrille seems to be everywhere. The most-coveted Chanel and Valentino styles are out of most of the “mere-mortal leagues” but these are some great alternatives. Go for leather to dress things up a bit or keep it casual in canvas. I like the Mint Velvet wedge versions for something a little smarter too (and for height). This H&M version is a good cost-effective substitute to them though.

The LWD

Topshop // & Other Stories // Mango // Topshop

I kind-of touched on this in May but summer wardrobes aren’t complete without a “little white dress”. Pick a casual one or something a little more dressy, there are plenty to be had. Take care with white though. True pure bright white only suits certain complexions (dark hair, dark eyes, olive to black skin – think Jessica Alba; or dark hair, blue eyes, fair skin – think Courtney Cox). Ecru or off white is universally flattering though. I love these TopShop dresses for ease of wear (sold out online but I have seen in stores), and this & Other Stories one is lovely to dress up or down. Mango of course is a great go-to for one with plenty on offer, including this dreamy maxi number. Flat sandals and a denim jacket and you’re good to go.

Khaki Topshop // Dorothy Perkins // Karen Millen // Etoile Isabel Marant via The Outnet

THE shade of the summer it seems, Khaki doesn’t have to be reserved for cadets! It’s actually a great neutral and works well with denim, black and white – a hard-working wardrobe all rounder! The trousers from good old Dotty P’s are so comfortable – a good buy in my post-pregnancy state. I’ll be wearing them with stripes no doubt. I also REALLY like the Topshop All in One.. And so it seems does everyone else. Limited stock available but a great drapey, soft fabric. Pick one up if you can.

Snakeskin

Clarks // Gap // Topshop

Now again in my mind this is a great neutral (and I’m talking about the “grey/nude/brown snakeskin here) that works well on accessories (and even looks great with Khaki). I had a jacket in snakeskin print from Zara from a couple of seasons ago and it really does lift a black dress or pair of jeans. I’ve seen a few things of late that would be worth second looks at to update your existing wardrobes. From lifting a pair of jeans to jazzing up a white summer dress, these pieces would work well. I especially love the Gap Bucket bag (THE shape of the season) and the TopShop Glads (not available on line but I’ve seen in store).

PomPoms

Anthropologie // East at John Lewis // Mango

It’s good to have fun with fashion and Pompoms are fast becoming de rigeur in terms of updating your look this summer. I remember spending some of my school holiday days making these in brightly coloured wools with my Mum and Nana, tightly winding the wool around cardboard circles and snipping it. Not sure what became of the Poms we made but I’d use them now to decorate gifts. Here are some ready made Pom-tastic things that have caught my eye. The straw tote is VERY cute. Beach anyone?!

I hope that I’ve given you some inspiration for the month and I’m looking forward to sharing How I Wore June later on now Oscar is safely with us. Let’s hope sleep deprivation won’t take over too much… :/

Have good months all!

Erin xx

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: 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

Friday Frock O’clock

This weeks Friday Frock was love at first sight. I’m a sucker for lady like styles and killer dresses… this one ticks all the boxes.


Fluid Pleat Dress, Karen Millen

I love the delicate yet striking neckline detail, the squared off yet feminine shoulders and the softly pleated skirt, not to mention that accent colour-of-the-season shade of brick red.

I can imaging myself wearing this to London Fashion Week, mingling with the fash-erati then heading to meet fellow bloggers at an aftershow party. We all have to dream, right?

Happy weekend readers. I’ll be raising a glass to you all :)

Love,
Rebecca
xo

PS Wondering where Friday Food is? This week, we’re having a bit of a change around, to accommodate the launch of Dream. Find. Do. Keep your eyes peeled later on today!

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