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

How to Wear: May

Morning Readers!

I do hope your second May Bank Holidays have treated you well and that you all had lovely long weekends. It’s utterly amazing to me that we are pretty much six months into the year. My hubbies birthday in June marks the mid-way point for me and we are fast approaching that – it’s going to be nice to (hopefully) be able to slow down for the second half of 2015.

I’m hoping that by the time you are reading this I’ll have had Bubba No. 2 who is extremely late. It’s therefore in that vein that I’m posting a quick “How to Wear” as to be honest, my May has consisted of only a few things on rotation.

My maternity leave started at the beginning of the month – 8 days prior to my due date. I wanted to have more time off post-birth so worked as late as I could cope with my commute. Pretty late it turns out. However, it seems as though the little person had other ideas so May was an opportunity to sort out the house, have copious amounts of Reflexology and Raspberry Leeaf Tea and chill a bit.

It’ll be no surprise that stripes have been on rotation (my Cos Bretons have been workhorses. Non-maternity and so easy to wear and wash. Love them. They have some great colours this season too. Grab one here).


Sorting the house has also meant accessing all my stored clothes and shoes. My leather espedrilles made an appearance (how I covet the Chanel ones but these Park Lane ones from ASOS are perfect in the real world!). It was so nice to dress up this Gap Maternity tunic differently (I’m 40+ weeks in the pic below and feeling mightily fed up!)

I’ve also been rotating a couple of silk tee’s that I picked up in the Uniqlo winter sale. They’ve been great for wearing over Jersey trousers as they are loose and cool. The tangerine shade of this one instantly lifts your mood.  Not the easiest colour to wear but I love it. The other I have is in a raspberry pink. Good deals at £9.99 each. The Uniqlo Silk range is really great and some pieces are on sale now (plus machine washing is fine!)

I must also mention here that my world has been revolutionised by my new ToyShades (mine are the Andersons worn above and below pictured with my big bubba) – prescription sunglasses for £40! Get them here or visit the one-hour lab at Topshop Oxford Circus. All you need is your prescription. The need for contact lenses on ALL sunny days has now vanished. LIBERATING!

Finally, when I’ve not felt like wearing nice clothes (or can’t in actual fact) there’s always accessories in jewellery and shoes. Gaining access to stored things is like Christmas. These TopShop sandals and Hipanema bracelet are good examples 😉

Enjoy the rest of May everyone and hopefully I’ll be with you in a week or so for what I recommend to buy in June. There’s some great espedrilles that will make the cut.

Erin xx

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

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

Spotted: Baukjen Pre-Fall 2014

As I’m already thinking post-baby clothes I was pretty excited to be able to legitimately consider the new Baukjen pre-fall collection that landed in my inbox last week. I’m looking for comfortable yet stylish clothes that I can wear around the house and out for baby groups and lunches with friends (whenever that happens!) and more than anything ease of wear. There’s a lot to be said for a capsule collection (I’ve talked about restricting seasonal clothes to a specific colour palette before to make getting dressed super easy,) and this capsule collection is perfect for late summer and early autumn days. These are my picks from the collection and they also act as great casual outfit inspiration.

What do you think readers? You can see the whole collection here.

Love,
Rebecca
xo

Spring Series: Wardrobe Transitions

One of the hardest things about this time of year is trying to dress appropriately. I always find myself desperate to try new trends and don spring-like shades, but when the weather is unpredictable there’s nothing worse than being caught in a hailstorm wearing pastels with drenched feet in impractical ballet flats.

Nonetheless, I have figured out a few ways to keep me happy by buying a few key items that merge seamlessly with my winter staples but blend into spring. Here are my must-haves and tips to wear them now and later.

It’s no coincidence the majority of these picks are from GAP, they play a blinder every spring with brights and stripes – perfect for your spring wardrobe and the price is always right with sales and spring discounts. I also used navy as my key basic neutral as I have tons of it, but you can switch for your preferred neutral, just make sure to adjust the colours you choose too.


Jumper, jeans, tee and scarf, all GAP // Bertie Aztec ballet flat. // Gold Brogues, ALDO

  • My key spring wardrobe update is a pair of coloured skinny jeans. I chose coral (this pair is rather fabulously named ‘neon flamingo’,) because it’s pretty and bright and works really well with winter neutrals. Team it with a grey or navy winter woolly now and a breton striped tee later.
  • Everybody needs stripes in their spring wardrobe, but they’re often of the t-shirt variety and when there’s a nip in the air they might not be sufficient to keep you warm. If the budget stretches buy a tee and look out for a knit too. Wear a tee under your parka while it’s cold and switch for your jumper as it warms up a little. You can layer this one up now with your regular jeans (I bought the coral stripe to wear with my usual dark wash jeans, but the navy works brilliantly with these coral skinnies,) and later on the beach with a pair of denim cut off shorts.


Scarves, Zara

  • Pick up a bright scarf or belt. The best investment you can make, you can wear a scarf in new season colours or prints with everything from a big coat now that you’re tired of your winter scarf, right through to layered with a light jacket or vest in warmer weather. Choose brights or tribal and ikat inspired patterns to stay on trend.
  • Lastly, pick out some fun shoes. I snapped up these gold brogues (in the Aldo sale now) for when it’s colder and I want to keep my toes covered up, and also a pair of pointed suede effect ballet flats in the Dorothy Perkins mid-season sale with 30% off for a smarter look on warmer days and work.

Have you picked up any transitional pieces yet this spring?

Love,
Rebecca
xo

Friday Frock O’clock

After featuring this dress, 2 weeks ago, I have seen striped dresses everywhere and ended up picking one up in Marks and Spencers, but unfortunately can’t find it online to share today. Always a spring time staple, it also happens to be bang on the monochrome trend right now, so if you’re looking to invest in something that will go the fashion mile this season but stay in your wardrobe much longer, it’s a no-brainer. Here are 6 striped monochrome dresses (I deliberately left out spring time navy and white combos to stay within the monochrome trend,) for different body shapes and wearability, all of which are under £50.

  1. Skater stripe dress, Next £50
  2. Monochrome Midi dress £14.99 New Look
  3. H&M £19.99
  4. Wide stripe £39.99
  5. Combination stripe dress £35.99
  6. Block bottom black dress £35.99, all Zara.

Now all you guys have to do is pick a favourite. Answers in the comments box please!

Love,
Rebecca
xo

Friday Frock O’clock

Hurrah! Friday Frock O’clock is back. I was debating whether to revisit friday frock after the brief hiatus that was January Joy, but then I flicked through a magazine and spotted this fabulous striped number and fell in love. I think it’s an appropriate return to one of my favourite features 🙂


Back Detail Stripe Dress, £60 – Warehouse.co.uk

Somehow, this Warehouse dress captures my fashion mood perfectly. It’s fresh and clean, perfect for spring and suits my current love for clean lines and striking design.

Look out for lots more fashion returning to Florence Finds for February! 🙂

Have a great weekend readers!

Love,
Rebecca
xo

What to Wear: Spring time stripes

This morning’s what-to-wear is a basic item, but it’s fresh and spring like with its nautical stripes and more importantly given the abysmal weather we’ve been experiencing of late, it’s on the warmer side of spring appropriate clothing.

It’s also (whisper it) a bargain.


Jumper // Jeans – Citizens of Humanity (old) // Flats – Dune (old) // Bangle // Bayswater //

I spotted this striped jumper in H&M a couple of weeks ago and pounced on it. I do like loose clothes, they’re flattering, comfortable and easy to wear (aside from the regular jeans I’ve paired it with here, I’ve teamed it with my cobalt blue jeans and of course the pink trousers too already.) I’d been keeping my eyes peeled for a couple of summer sweaters as we’re heading off on holiday soon and the San Francisco weather could be quite cool when we arrive stateside, so I don’t want to be caught out.



I love the bell shaped sleeves, the over-sized shape (I’m wearing a medium,) and the cute gold buttons on the shoulders of this jumper. For a bargain £19.99 I snapped it up in a hurry. Perfect for shopping! I also added to my enamel bangle collection with the cream and grey pyramid bangle I’m wearing here, also a bargain £6.99.

Totally not the point of this post but the star of the pictures, is my rather lovely birthday (and forthcoming anniversary!) present from Pete too, my gorgeous hot fuschia Bayswater. I’m loving the colour pop against the navy and cream outfit.

Form an orderly queue then ladies with a crisp £20 in hand…

Love,
Rebecca
xo

PS, Want to see more ways to wear this jumper? I featured it in my Paris packing tips for Michelle over on Pocketful of Dreams.
PPS, big thanks to my sister for stepping in as my photographer for these shots. I think she did rather well 🙂

Spotted: GAP SS12

This week, the cold, the snow, the general freezing-ness of it all has completely blindsided me. Yes, I know it’s usually like this in February but for the best part of a month now, I have been immersed in spring/summer fashion, drooling over styles for warmer weather, longing for longer days and generally needing some sunshine.

Along with the weather, I’ve just hit that point in the year when I suddenly think, ‘That’s it, I’ve had enough of winter, I NEED SOME SUN!’ And there’s one place that you can always rely upon for some metaphorical sunshine when it comes to fashion, Gap. Thankfully, alongside the cheery shades there are reliable basics for layering when things get inclement too. 😉

I think you all know I’m a massive fan of colour and a huge follower of fashion, but what I love about Gap is that it’s so darn wearable. I may love fashion, but I equally have a life to live. Things to do, you know? So most of the time I’m found dressed down in jeans or trousers with a great sweater or shirt. Right now, I’m also desperately trying to stay warm. So when I need something to cheer my wardrobe up, that’s season appropriate but nods to the coming trends, Gap is my first stop off.

Remember the GAP Parka I wore? Well, I’m loving the lighter, shorter funnel neck version Gap have for spring and it looks great paired with punchy brights like the orange tee pictured.

One of the easiest ways to feel like you’re brightening up your wardrobe is to buy a key stand out piece and then work it in to your normal outfits. The easiest for cost-per-wear is a pair of bright trousers to make a monochrome outfit wearing a top of the same hue, colour block with clashing shades, or tone down with neutrals like the khaki parka jacket above, or navy and grey for a darker nod to the miserable weather.

And the fun doesn’t stop there. Gap have produced some great flats this year – I’m particularly fancying the pointy numbers in nude and hot pink for when warmer weather returns, or for comfy run arounds, how about the oxfords?

Finally, If you’re feeling a little bit unsure, not quite ready to commit to a statement like these got-my-name-all-over-them bags, just salute the trends with this super stylish and understated sporty neon edged scarf.

So, tell me, are you a Gap fan? Will you be giving them a look after seeing the spring shades here?

Love,
Rebecca
xo

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