What to Wear… Aztec

Recently, I’ve seen a real trend for Aztec prints and patterns on the high street and I really love it. You all know I’m a sucker for a print, but I also love a drapey knit to cocoon myself in and so when I saw this Aztec Cape I was sold.

Aztec Cape, Warehouse – £30

When I read all the feedback on Friday about fashion posts, a few of you mentioned missing seeing what various items look like on me, a real person, not a model. I haven’t done an outfit post for a while for various reasons, but it made me think it was time to bite the bullet and get them going again. I wanted to wear this as soon as I bought it so immediately dragged Pete into the garden to snap it and share with you all.

Aztec Cape, Warehouse // Jersey Top, M&S (old) // Skinny Jeans, New Look // Belt, GAP (old) // Boots, Office (old)

It’s an absolute steal at £30 and perfect for layering on in colder weather over a jersey top as I’m wearing it here or a blouse or shirt. I even think a heavier polo neck (making a comeback this year) would work in colder weather. I also think it’s a great transitional piece if you’re pregnant or post-baby and wanting something to wrap around a bump or tummy.

I hope you like it readers, and enjoy the return of What to Wear :)


Friday [Bridesmaid] Frock O’clock

Last weekend was Jessica’s wedding and I missed sharing a friday frock with you all as I was running around like a headless chicken, picking up last minute items, decorating the marquee, practicing my walk down the aisle and preening Jess, (In another life I should have been a nail technician…) I hope I can make it up to you all today by sharing my outfit.

Fortunately Jess and I agreed that something grown up and elegant was what she wanted her bridesmaids in. All three of us are married ladies (and two are mummies,) so it seemed more appropriate to look for a thoroughly grown up dress. We’re all pretty different shapes and sizes too so it needed to be flattering for everyone (the usual bridesmaids issue,) and I was really hoping for comfortable, for eating and dancing.

Dreamy photography by the lovely Julia West of Julia and You, my hair (which I loved) by Cassandra Rizzuto

In the end, once Jess decided on peach as her colour scheme, I spotted this. Luckily we all loved it, including Jess, as it was the first and the last dress I saw in an appropriate shade and style all summer. I ended up accessorising with a beaded sparkling headband, crystal deco style earrings, a matching bag and a grey enamel floral cuff that I can’t find a picture of online anywhere. Unusually, I went for sandals, as a full shoe wouldn’t have been appropriate with the dress and managed to keep my almost 5 inch heels on all night.

When Jess is back from honeymoon I’ll share all the details – I can’t wait. But for now, you can see a sneak peek of the wedding on Julia’s blog. I hope you liked it – I loved every minute.

Have a fabulous weekend readers!


Monday Must have: The outfit saver top.

There are a few things that I think everybody needs in their wardrobe. Items you will come back to time after time and save you from any sartorial dilemma. A great go-everywhere dress would be one of them, a pair of killer animal print heels and a black leather jacket but right up there on the list is a special white top.

I bought this one before my honeymoon and have worn it countless times since. It’s simple with just enough detail to elevate it slightly from a plain shell top and works equally well with a pair of jeans, as a statement skirt.

The reason it’s a wardrobe saver however is that it rescues so many other items that might otherwise never see the light of day. Being neutral it can be worn with any colour, and always works with those new printed trousers, or that bright skirt that you don’t have anything else to go with. Even better, if you have an interview, throw on a jacket and it looks polished too.

Having been on the look out for a replacement for a while, I spotted this one in Topshop a few weeks back and snapped it up. At a mere £40, the beading looks Jenny Packham worthy and the back detail is interesting without being overtly sexy. The only problem I had was finding a bra to work with it, and I ended up going for a multiway from M&S that worn strapless, had an adaptor that wound the back strap around my waist under the cutout back.

This one doesn’t work that well tucked in, hence me leaving it out, (because of the cut out,) but I wasn’t going to leave it there just for that reason. It’s going to be a real wardrobe workhorse and I’m sure you’ll be seeing a lot more of it here. ;)

Have you got a favourite top that you wear again and again?


*Unfortunately this top is no longer available online, but if you happen to be pregnant – the maternity version is still around and a good investment I think to take you right through to the Christmas season, if you have that long to go!

What to Wear: The perfect summer short

You might have noticed we’re having a bit of a holiday theme this week as I’m currently in Cornwall enjoying the sea views. Today I wanted to share something that made me ridiculously happy, the perfect summer short. Like many of my outfit posts, I’m not claiming that this is revolutionary or super stylish, but it’s been a good few years since I have found a pair of shorts that feel flattering, are just the right length and really comfortable so I thought you guys might be interested.

Of course, they’re from good old Gap and actually a touch longer than they appear on me, as I have turned them up an inch. I do have some denim cut offs but they are in the realms of cheek skimming which is not a look I would sport anywhere other than in my own garden, or perhaps on holiday far far away. I really dislike the very top part of my legs and whilst I have slimmed them down a bit and toned up (courtesy of the 30 day shred) I still prefer them well covered. These shorts are the perfect length to show off enough leg that it’s flattering, and no more!

There are a ton of colours available, although you might have to track them down online (or as I did, in the GAP outlet – These cost me just £10) and I was also pretty pleased to finally add some mint to my wardrobe. I love mint but it doesn’t love me and looks pretty bad next to my face. Here’s a top tip if you have a similar shade predicament – wear it on your bottom half and away from your face, it’s much more flattering.

The shorts are also stretchy and give a little for a slouchy fit with no unattractive digging in when you sit down. Run, don’t walk reader, I hope you can track some down!


Friday Frock O’clock

It’s white hot out there folks and as a result I’m going a little left field. Not a frock today but my favourite alternative, the playsuit…

Jacquard Playsuit – Warehouse, £40 (from £60)

Dressing for a hen do is tricky I think. I don't tend to buy that many clothes that are suitable for a full on night on the town these days, preferring a relaxed casual look, even for dining out. For this night I wanted something fun and flirty that I would be comfortable enough in to eat and drink.

Do you remember that Mango dress I posted? Well, I had my heart set on that floral number but it had sold out everywhere. I even resorted to looking online for a larger size to have altered and had my sister scouring Birmingham and Mum in Liverpool. Once I resigned myself to the fact it was gone, I had about a week to find something else and no time to do it in. I spotted this on the Warehouse website, walked into store and found it had been reduced that very day. Even better, it fit like a glove. Apologies for the indoor rubbish photo but I was having too much fun to get a proper one while we were out! ;) (Jessica’s dress, entirely hen appropriate I thought, was from French Connection in case you’re wondering.)

Fate, no?

Enjoy the sunshine this weekend readers – I’m off to Glasgow!


Wear it Two Ways: The Go Everywhere Dress

Remember a little while ago I shared three dresses that I thought would work for every occasion in your wardrobe this summer? Well, I went on to buy this one, from Atterley Road and today I thought I would share how I wore it.

Second Female Guess dress, Atterley Road

As I type, I’m actually wearing this dress at home with the same belt that I wore it with in the first photo, on holiday. It’s an oversized style and without heels it could look a bit too big for the day so a belt gives it a completely different look. It’s thin and cool for summer and the open back detail adds a little extra something which is more subtel when belted and worn with a jacket and scarf layers.

Back home on a chilly May evening I headed to a party, throwing on a leather jacket for a little edge and wearing peep toe boots. Had it been warmer I probably would have worn some super strappy sandals but in even colder weather I have worn it with tights and boots too. As you can see it’s quite the multi-functional piece.

So ladies, I hope I’ve inspired you to find that perfect multifunctional piece and alos reminded you that spending a little more for the right item doesnt necessarily mean you’ll go short in the wardrobe department.

Wear. It. Everywhere.


Friday Frock O’clock

Second Female Lima Jumpsuit, £90 Atterley Road

This week’s Friday Frock is a special safari edition. You all know I love a jumpsuit and this one seemed perfect to round off Africa week. Sometimes you need a stand out item in your wardrobe and whilst I love a statement piece I’m not really into the associated effort or feeling trussed up like a turkey. This feels special but really easy to wear, comfortable and despite the knock-out print it doesn’t feel overly loud.

I rarely wear low cut tops but the wrap over top is teasingly low on this jumpsuit and as everything else stays covered up, there’s no hint of looking  tarty. I also quite like a loose outfit. I guess some people could say it’s unflattering, but I think this hints a little at the curves that lie beneath ;)

Either way, although I wore it only once in South Africa (because everywhere was much more casual than I expected,) it felt appropriate and more than a little bit fun.

Happy Weekend readers!


What to Wear: The South Africa Edition

For a while now I have been thinking that it would be fun to do a feature of what I wore every day of a holiday, so for a break from the travel posts I thought I’d share my outfits in SA, day by day. Putting together a packing list or ‘holiday wardrobe’ isn’t the easiest thing to do and I thought you guys might like to see how I’ve worn the same things in different ways throughout the holiday and I’ve included some tips on things to think about or remember when you are planning what to take away with you. This trip wasn’t all glamour so please don’t get too excited about what’s in store, it’s really more of a real life insight and hopefully you like it!

If you’re going to be sightseeing, a lightweight showerproof jacket and a cosy scarf are invaluable and will serve you well day after day…

If you’ll be walking a lot, especially out of the city, don’t forget some trainers or casual white pumps that will go with everything whilst giving you stable footing off the beaten track…

Stick to a key colour palette (mine was yellow, navy, and coral/red with neutral basics mixed in and a big dose of stripes.)

Invest in a couple of key accessories like these metallic flats to keep your outfits on trend.

You’re on holiday so ditch the formality and go for relaxed casual style and clothes you feel comfortable in…

Be prepared in certain parts of the world (and depending on your activities) to put together an outfit that covers your arms and legs. Sometimes it’s function over form!

Make your wardrobe work harder by re-wearing and layering. Neutrals work best for this as they will go with so many pieces (and in my book, navy and white stripes = neutral basics!)

Always pack a new bikini for a poolside pick me up :)

Don’t forget a cross body bag for all your essentials and some inexpensive costume jewellery (I always go for a bangle, hoop earrings, studs, a chunky necklace and a fine chain,) that will take you from beach to bar with ease.

I hope you enjoyed the insight :)


*PS I haven’t included my Safari outfits here as we barely took any photos of each other and I was just layered up to the max wearing all of the above on the chilly morning and evening drives!

Some of the items featured have previously been blogged about here:

Wear it Two Ways: Lace Skirt

Today’s Wear it Two Ways is all about an item that I had been looking for for quite a while before I found it, and this post illustrates why – because I knew it would have so much versatility.

The skirt is from Whistles – first spotted in the SS13 preview at The Savoy that I attended at London Fashion Week last September. I picked it up in the recent sale and there are still some around if you like it. I love the contrast darker blue waistband, sporty style and pockets. Who doesn’t love a pocket?

Top, GAP // Skirt, Whistles // Necklace, Banana Republic (old) // Shoes, Dorothy Perkins

The first time I wore it was almost as soon as I bought it – We headed across to see my sister in law and niece to celebrate their birthdays. I wnated to dress up and look nice but with young kids around needed to be a little bit practical too, so opted for a striped tee (GAP) and flats. This was a few weeks back too when the weather was super-cold, so tights were obligatory as was my trusty parka. A chunky necklace upped the ‘party’ factor.

Top, Whistles // Skirt, Whistles // Earrings, Whistles //  Shoes, Sam Edleman (old) // Coat, Zara (old) // Bag, Zara (old)

More recently I was out for dinner and tried it with another top from Whistles, with cut out lace inserts across the shoulders. It didn’t look quite right left out even though it’s a structured T-shirt style, so I tucked it in and went for a more streamlined look with animal print courts and my favourite sparkling box clutch.

The shoulder detail would have competed with a necklace so I went for chunky drop earrings and neon bright nails to finish it off.

You can see the top in action previously here and the coat here.


Wear it Two Ways: Printed Pants

Months ago, I shared these pants, (a complete find in the bog-standard section of M&S) and boasted that I could see myself wearing them right through winter and into next spring. Today the proof is in the pudding.

In truth, I have worn them countless times. For many evenings out but also in the day. The easiest way is with a darker toned top (just like the evening ensemble here,) but I have also ventured into the realms of print on prints, with my trusty polka dot chambray shirt from GAP.

Lace insert top, Whistles // Trousers, Marks and Spencer // Clutch, Whistles // Patent Platform Court Shoes, M&S

Fortunately printed pants are going precisely nowhere this season, great news for me as these have really gone the distance – look out for some for yourself in paisley, bright or geometric prints. Footwear is key – choose ballet flats for Parisian chic, pointed courts for evening glamour, or brogues for a casual, quirky look.

Parka, The Kooples // Shirt, GAP // Pants, as before // Brogues, French Connection // Bag, Mulberry

Are you wearing printed pants yet?

Have a great Monday readers,


PS See my printed pants worn here (in Cornwall,) and here (at London Fashion Week)