Spotted: Atterley Road

Recently, I’ve been looking towards a more grown up, streamlined and simplistic style for my Autumn/Winter outfits. I don’t know what has prompted the changed, but  I feel more like inventing my own take on the trends than slavishly following them. Maybe it’s the advent of the cooler months resurecting my favourite styles and colours that makes me veer towards my signature style, but viewing a lot of the high street collections just hasn’t been doing it for me like it did early in the year as the spring summer collections flooded in. I’ve been looking for less pieces of higher quality and with serious wardrobe miles in them. Enter Atterley Road.

Shirt, 0039 Italy // Skirt, Jiqsaw // Necklace, Made // Shoes, Whistles // Ring, Made ~ All @ Atterley Road

Have you seeen the adverts for Atterley Road, ALL over the internet recently? It was through one of those ads that I clicked through to the site and found a really great concept – designed to feel like shopping on your favourite high street (a London-ism for sure,) but online, there’s an edited selection of pieces – ‘the best of brands you know and love – with new labels you’ll grow to love.’ Snappy style guides are regularly produced addressing fashion trends people like you or I need – a collection of knits for the wintery weather, your work wear wardrobe sorted or a capsule collection of key pieces every girl needs. And I think the selection is impeccable.

Dress, Fillipa K // Scarf, Whistles // Boots, Jigsaw // Bag, Jigsaw ~ All @ Atterley Road

You’ll find my favourites like Whistles, NW3 by Hobbs and Hunter, and cooler labels like IRO, Ash and Des Petites Hauts. As I was doing a bit of window shopping I thought I would put a couple of outfits together to solve some of my own dilemma’s right now and demonstrate the breadth and quality available.

Top and Belt, Des Petits Hauts // Jeans, 7 for all Mankind // Earrings, Made // Satchel, Jiqsaw // Ballet flats, French Sole

There isn’t a huge selection, but that’s because they have done the legwork for you. Need a work skirt? Find the perfect pencil style easily. Statement dress or weekend, reassuringly, dresses are the largest section and there’s all the finishing touches too, including jewellery, bags and shoes. 🙂

I can see I’m going to be spending a lot of time on the Atterley Roadsite and quite possibly a lot of money! Have you heard of Atterley Road and do you like my outfit choices?


My Month… July [The Fashion]

I thought I’d do this months Instagram round up a little differently and focus on one area of my images as when I looked back, I realised they fall into distinct groups of fashion or outfit shots, food and my life behind the scenes. Maybe I’ll share another group next week…

For now though, here’s what Flo wore in July…

Row 1: French Connection dress [work outfit] // French Connection top and bright flats [work outfit] // New brogues
Row 2: Whistles big spot blouse [sale purchase] // Zara gold thread blouse [sale] // GAP polka spot blouse
Row 3: What to Wear // Wide leg jeans and striped tee [sale] // Accessorize glitzy bee and fox rings
Row 4: Whistles Angel jumper with blue jeans and parka // The Dream. Find. Do. wardrobe department // New patterned Topshop trousers for summer [sale]
Row 5: Zara Frill bottom top for hot days [work outfit] [sale] // French Connection skirt [sale] // Sunday outfit in chambray and converse with the x100.

So, I’ll tell you my favourite, if you tell me yours?


Friday Frock O’clock

Rather than my usual interest in trend-led fashion this week I’ve been working on my, ahem, work wardrobe. I’ll be the first to admit, I don’t wear ‘office wear’ for my job as a GP. I also don’t dress how you would probably expect a GP to dress. I have several requirements for my work clothes. They must be washable (I do hand wash, but rarely bother to get to the dry cleaners,) appropriate in a professional sense (no gaping bust or skirts that ride up,) both when standing and sitting, and be comfortable. That said, I like to show a bit of FF style personality!

So, I found this dress in the French Connection sale and snapped it up.

Raquella Dress, French Connection sale

It’s in a washable cotton, has the tiniest hint of a peplum, in a figure flattering fitted shape. Add to that my favourite navy shade and a pattern that remains professional yet has some personality about it, and I’m all set for the working day, not forgetting my patent satchel and pretty blue brogues for a serious touch 😉

Raquella Dress, French Connection sale // Pale blue brogues, French Connection sale // (Harriet) Satchel, Mulberry sale

Happy weekend readers,


Legally Stylish…

This morning, I’m headed off on holiday and in the mean time, I have lined up a selection of fabulous ladies to pop in and keep things going around here while I’m away. There will still be 2 posts a day, but one of them won’t be by me. I’m pretty excited actually, each of the bloggers who are contributing are people who I admire for their style and content so I think you are all in for a treat. And I’m not telling you who’s coming either, you’ll have to wait and see!

Today, it’s the hilarious and seriously intelligent Kirsty from A Safe Mooring. She’s hit on a subject I’ve been meaning to cover for a while so I hope you enjoy this teaser and share what you wear to the office after her insights. Thanks Kirsty!

Like Rebecca, I work in a profession that is often presented on screen as impossibly glamorous. If television and films are to be believed, female lawyers waltz around the office all day in nothing but mini-skirted suits in a variety of pastel shades, sporting perfectly coiffed hair and skyscraper heels. (They also merrily flit from one specialist area to another, this week defending a murderer and the next pursuing a libel case, but apparently the rules of professional conduct, just like the rules of office-appropriate attire, don’t apply on the other side of the screen.)

It’s all Ally McBeal’s fault. Back when I was an impressionable teenager, Calista Flockhart epitomised my idea of a glamorous lawyer. Donning a tiny skirt, dancing in the communal bathroom, drinking in the in-house bar – just a typical day in the life of your average solicitor. Or not.

And who can forget the pinktastic phenomenon that was Legally Blonde? Sure, it’s hardly representative of real life (or intended to be), but there was something about those fluffy pens and candy-coloured Jackie O suits – not to mention the implication that you could be blonde, wear pink, and actually have a couple of brain cells to rub together – that secretly appealed to me. Judging by the embarrassingly large number of blondes brandishing fluffy pens on the day one of my law degree, I wasn’t the only one.

Sadly, the reality of life in a legal office is somewhat disappointing in the style stakes. When I began my job straight out of university, I had three suits: a black, a grey and a blue. Conservative, safe, zzzzz. Fast-forward a few years and instead of being a trainee, shuffling paper and scurrying in the background, I’m out in front mixing with clients and making decisions. I don’t need to hide my opinions at work, so why hide my sense of style?As women become an increasingly dominant force in the workplace, the classic male uniform of suit, shirt and tie becomes less and less relevant, so why is the legal profession so slow to catch on? Surely it’s possible to look professional without looking like you’re the Conservative candidate in a local council by-election??

Ladies, I believe it is. Allow me to present Exhibit A in the case for professional-but-stylish: Diane Lockhart, the ballsy senior partner in my current legal drama of choice, The Good Wife.

Diane’s wardrobe is subtle, but speaks volumes. Rich jewel tones in classic shapes are lifted to the next level with interesting jewellery and luxe fabrics. Dresses and smart separates replace suits. It doesn’t scream “Look at me!” (or, “Look at my legs!” à la Ms McBeal). Instead, it says in a calm, authoritative voice, “I am a woman. I am good at my job. I do not need to dress like a man, nor do I need to dress to attract a man, to excel in my chosen field. And by the way, your fly’s undone.” At least, that’s what I like to think it says.

Of course, it’s a fine line to tread, and women’s magazines aren’t particularly helping us find our way. If I read another article suggesting that a leather pencil skirt is “totally office appropriate”, I will throttle someone with my own bejewelled hands. But the shift from the days of McBeal and co – when television’s idea of a female lawyer was a ditzy girl larking about in a short skirt – to the slick, smart and stylish professionals presented in The Good Wife is a significant one. Off-screen, there are signs that it might be catching on. My (female) boss often ditches a suit in favour of a sleek dress or colour-blocked top and skirt, and even the senior partner has been spotted – *gasp* – without his tie. Lawyers aren’t known for their daring sense of style, but as more and more young women enter the profession, perhaps we can show the old boys a thing or two.

What about you? How do you balance looking professional with looking stylish?

What to Wear: [Basics] Whistles Tailored Cigarette Trouser

I’ve got a couple of What to Wear posts coming at you this week, basically covering my wardrobe of outfits taken to London this weekend. I travelled down straight from work then changed for dinner, wore a day and evening outfit on Saturday, then another day outfit on Sunday. I was pleased with how well all the pieces mixed and matched so I thought I’d share it with you later.

However, first of all, a basic wardrobe staple that I purchased recently (when the 25% off Whistles with Grazia offer started – which is running until tomorrow, code WH20SS12, so make the most of it!) and have filled a chic hole in my wardrobe.

I think the majority of women will say that they find trouser shopping a nightmare, whether it’s leg length (for the record mine are rather short so most trouser legs require shortening) thunder thighs or hip/waist ratio problems, we all have our crosses to bear and so when I find a pair that suits I’m pretty pleased. Something I have wanted for a while now however is a pair of slim tailored trousers that finish at the ankle, a perennially chic length that works just as well with a weekend jumper as a blouse at work, perfect with heels or flats… and I found them at Whistles.

Yellow stripe jumper and Mia navy tailored trousers, Whistles

I have tried similar trousers on but the high street’s version of a cigarette pant, i.e. slim all the way down but not ‘tight’, seems to have in recent seasons been all about the ‘peg leg’ – a style I find most unflattering. If not peg leg, then some have been ridiculously slim cut, straining in completely inappropriate places and more resembling a legging. I knew I’d get a lot of wear out of this item so I decided to try Whistles with the offer, as they have a few similar styles in – the Justine at £95, the Mia at £110 and a couple of others. I tried both of the first two and opted for the (very fine) wool blend ‘Mia’, which with the discount were very reasonable I thought considering the quality. I just love the fit. This air is navy but both the Justine and Mia come in black too.

I’ve included two shots of this particular trouser in action, a bit of a dodgy one (above) in the hotel room (apologies for the appalling lighting) showing my work appropriate outfit pairing the trousers with my GAP pointed flats and a blouse. Then Sundays outfit with them worn again with the flats and my Whistles yellow stripe jumper (also seen here.)

I’ve also introduced a nifty little feature you can see below with some extra images of the outfits. I figured it might not be everyone’s cup of tea seeing several images of the same outfit so have just included two main ones here. However, if you want to flick through some others (with/without jackets etc,) then click on the gallery below. Let me know if you like it, or you’d rather just se them in full as I usually do. 🙂


What to Wear: Polka Dots.

Good morning readers! This morning you get to have a gawk at my fashion choices because we have finally had a spot of good weather (although a touch chilly!) in Manchester and I’ve been able to get out and take some photos of my recent purchases.

Today’s choice, polka dots, comes to you with a huge tip-off… it may not feel like it but we are nearing the end of the A/W’11 season and soon the shops will be full of Spring/Summer clothes, despite the fact we’ll still want to curl up in front of a fire in a thick woolly jumper. Luckily, today’s is a trend that will see you through.

The Whistles pre-collection has just been released featuring spots and dots and Marc Jacobs spring/summer 2012 collection also used the playful print heavily. It’s a look that reminds me of the eighties, Princess Diana-style tiny polka dot midi dresses and oversized spots in nautical navy and white. No-one wants to look like an 80’s throwback though, so this is how I’m wearing them…

First up my Emerald green and black polka dot skirt from Topshop. (Find similar here and here.) As ever in these posts I’m not claiming to be some kind of fashion guru and as a result, I’m not afraid to admit that this skirt has given me some serious trouble. Firstly getting hold of it – after falling in love with one in-store where there were only 6 and 8’s, I then struggled to track down my size only to find that it’s flown off the rails because Kate Middleton picked one up months ago in a Topshop spree. I’m wearing a 10 here which as you can see is…. snug.

The second problem was what to wear it with. I don’t wear black, which for someone a little more conservative than me would be a natural choice to match the polka dots, (I’m thinking a chic fine merino polo neck,) and after trying burgundy and grey (both very ‘school uniform’) I decided to go the whole hog and try green on green which I love. This for me is a work look, smart yet retaining my own sense of style, but for the purposes of the photos I teamed it with my yellow bag (similar here) and worked a colour block look, also a trend that will still be big in 2012.

I really love this skirt. I like green anyway, but the polka dots are a super tactile flocked texture which really lifts them off the background. The blouse was an absolute steal at the Dorothy Perkins sale and has a nice gathered back detail. I accessorised with a chunky MADE for Whistles necklace and a slick of Ivy shimmer Bobbi Brown Gel liner for a subtle nod to the green without looking like an extra from Wicked.

Next up is my favourite blouse, this white with navy spot Zara number. I’ve paired it with my trusty Whistles pinstripe tailored shorts and black opaques with Pied a Terre shearling ankle boots (now in the sale) for winter cosiness. The cardigan is an old Whistles one that I’m desperately searching for a replacement for.

With a more neutral outfit I added my new find for lips, the Stila lip stain in Acai crush, which lasts for literally hours and the bag is the first ever Kate Moss for Topshop collection.

So that’s it, pick up some polka dots in the sales and stay ahead of the fashion curve into 2012 🙂


Banana Republic Manchester

I happened to visit the Trafford Centre recently and got ridiculously excited to see that Banana Republic have opened their doors there. Banana Republic is a store I love to visit when I’m in America – mainly for work wear but I really like their casual but modern and clean styles for off-duty dressing too.

The new store is classically Banana Republic in style, spacious, light and lots of marble flooring with a sweeping staircase up to menswear.

I’m actually a bit disappointed as I wanted to share some of the new collection with you today but frankly, the images on the site aren’t up to much and some of the things I really wanted to share weren’t even on the website.

However, taken from the look book, here are some of my favourites…

Banana Republic Manchester

The Carole dress was displayed instore with a fab little khaki green jumper over the top which had sequinned shoulder panels, showing perfectly how to take a dress that works well in warmer Autumn days (– will we be getting any of those?) because of the colour palette, into cooler days. This is a great secret to making your wardrobe work – I know lots of people would shy away from spending so much on a work dress, but consider it as a skirt and a dress and you have a piece that works for a large part of the year. Think courts for the Winter in the office as well as a chunky boyfriend cardigan over the top with a big scarf, belt and flat boots for the weekend.

The thing I was most excited about was the Belle Capelet. A modern take on a cape and perfect for this weather when it doesn’t seem to know if it wants to rain or blow a gale or shine, it looks really chic. I may have to make a purchase!
(Click the link to see a little video of the Banana Republic buying director telling us why she loves the Belle Capelet.)

The other thing worth mentioning, particularly if you’re a fan of the fifties/sixties look, is that Banana Republic have launched a Mad Men Collection. Inspired by the TV series it’s got some gorgeous shift dresses and a hefty dose of leopard print to make for some serious glamour.

Do you shop at Banana Republic?


PS I also spotted this Mac which I thought would be great for a guy… they never want to wrap up anyway and this is perfect for showers and looking hot smart.

PPS. There’s 25% off trousers at the moment online only at Banana Republic.

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