Sunday, October 26

Life Hacks....Thrifty Tips to Keep You and Your Lifestyle well within Budget!!

Hi everyone! I was recently asked to do a post by the lovely people at Most Wanted, the online lifestyle magazine by on my favourite thrifty tips which I could share with my lovely blogger friends, I do hope you find the following useful and maybe some or all of these tips may inspire you to do the same too!

Do think to shop Winter in Summer and Autumn- whilst on charity shop trips this Summer I bagged a couple of winter jackets for just under a fiver each- a Belstaff bomber jacket was £4.95 and a trend led camel wool jacket was found for the same price, both at my local Sue Ryder. Then just this week, inspired by oversized coats on pinterest I found a black and white tweedy version by Next from my local Salvation Army for just £6.99. When the only extras to pay out on are dry cleaning then it's always worth checking out the charity shops a few months before you actually start wearing your finds- the prices tend to be really reasonable and there are definite gems to be found!

Check out your local library for new reads, old classics, your favourite actors autobiography, craft or cookery books- or some chick lit or a psychological thriller to keep you occupied on those rainy weekend afternoons. I've just recently finished reading The Long Fall by Julia Crouch, Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn and The Broken by Tamar Cohen. You can generally get up to 12 books on a library card and keep renewing them for as long as you need to all for free!

A cheap and healthy alternative to cough medicine and lozenges for a sore throat that I swear by is fresh ginger cut into bite size chunks. Chew until all the juice is released and swallow or spit out what's left, eating at regular intervals. From having a hacking cough and sore throat within 48 hours my cough disappeared and the fresh ginger root cost less than 20p from my local grocery shop!

Check out the men's sections in your local favourite high street stores for good quality wool knits at reasonable prices. As you know from my previous post I recently bought a couple of basic crew neck sweaters from H&M which came in at just under £30 for both and I know they'll be really versatile and stylish for my wardrobe!

Dig out all those faded black jeans, tees and sweatshirts that are languishing unloved at the bottom of your wardrobe and grab some machine wash velvet black dye from Dylon, available at your local supermarket or haberdashery store. You'll have next to new items in just a couple of hours that will be totally revitalised and renewed, giving you new outfit options for the coming season and those old faded favourites a new lease of life!

Before and After!

Before you get rid of those unwanted jumpers and sweaters that maybe moth eaten or too small, cut the sleeves off just above the elbows and put a small slit in the cuff for a thumb hole (optional)  to create an instant pair of fingerless wrist/arm warmers as an extra warm layer for the chilly days ahead. They look great as an extra layer over contrasting coloured sweaters or cardigans and will be keepers in your wardrobe for years to come!

I hope these have given you ideas of your own on how to get thrifty this coming season!! Have a lovely week ahead to you all!

Thursday, October 16

Essential Autumn Basics, Sweaters from H&M

Hi everyone! Firstly I need to hold my hands up to being a very absent blogger, I'm dealing with a lot of personal issues at the moment but I'm trying my hardest to get my mojo back and get back to my favourite hobbies of thrifting and blogging. Of late I do prefer to read blogs rather than publish posts which is how I'm spending a lot of my free time. Thank you to all of you who continue to read my blog and leave comments-it's always so nice to see them and knowing that a lot of you do read my blog and may not comment too means a lot, so a big thanks to you all!

Yesterday was an opportunity to have a quick trip out and indulge in some retail therapy on the high street-in fact just one shop in particular, H&M. I know it's a real favourite for a lot of bloggers lately, not only are their pieces stylish and trend led but the majority of their items are really reasonably priced combined with being good quality for the money.

I was in Regents Street briefly and knew I wanted to go in H&M and have a browse and I was definitely tempted by a few items. I was won over though as soon as I hit the mens section as the sweaters there really were worth a second look. I picked up first this merino wool one in a dark slate grey- in a size small it's perfectly long in the body and sleeves without looking too big and it will go well with skirts and jeans already in my wardrobe. It's an ideal knit too, more fine than thick but it would still look great with a shirt underneath too if I want to layer up. At £19.99 it was a must buy for me:

My second pick was this wool blend berry and navy crew neck sweater for just- wait for it- £9.99!! I was very surprised at the price as it's brilliant value for money and I love how the stripes all match up perfectly around the shoulders and front and back. A nice texture and knit -not too fine and not thick. The sweater also comes in a grey and navy colourway but I went for the berry colourway as I've jeans in this colour I can pair it with this season:

My other find was from the womens section and is a short sleeve fine viscose knit sweater in a light grey colour. For just £7.99 it's ideal for Autumn as an alternative to a grey tee and will be perfect under a blazer or smart jacket too:

I've a lot of bottoms in the way of jeans and although I don't own lots of trousers and skirts I have enough for the wear I get out of them and if I'm after anything else it will be some more blue jeans to add to the growing collection!!

What items are on your style basics wishlist this Autumn? Have you already succumbed to those must have pieces or are you waiting to find the right ones, do let me know!!

Wishing you all a really good week and roll on the anticipated heatwave we're due this weekend- I won't hold my breath though!!

Saturday, September 27

Thrift Inspiration.......Autumn Check Shirts plus Valentino and Marks and Spencer thrift finds

Hi everyone! I hope you've had a really good week- the weather here has been quite up and down- not much rain, fairly mild and some sun- all quite 'ordinary' for September really, which makes for layering.

As I stated in previous posts I've become quite taken with the shirt- summer saw stripes and checks and now Autumn has arrived I'm continuing the theme with checks and am loving flannel, with three now in my hopefully to be extended collection. Although this is a silk number, it would be my number one choice if money were no object, I really love it:

Equipment silk check shirt at MyTheresa, £332

For those of us with budgets in mind you can't go too far wrong with Uniqlo. A real autumnal must visit store, I'm sure a lot of us will be quite taken with either their merino or cashmere knits, the winter jackets, the collaborations- for me I'm loving their check shirts in a fabulous variety of different colourways: 

Flannel shirt, Uniqlo £19.99

Really love this and could be very tempted to indulge, Uniqlo £19.99

I featured my Uniqlo thrift find a few posts ago- a flannel shirt bought in hot and sunny August seemed rather premature but now the weather is cooler, I wouldn't be without it. It was a bargain £2.99 from the British Heart Foundation: 

I was really inspired by the Equipment outfit above to team my shirt with all black, so I wore my Dune ankle studded boots gifted to me last year, River Island thrifted skinny jeans from last year (recently dyed to get them jet black again- I highly recommend this for any faded black items you're tempted to part with purely over the lack of black in them), my Primark thrifted leather biker jacket which is a few years old now and my black Celine style cross body bag: 

So this morning saw a thrifting trip on the bus to a neighbouring town to see what goodies I could try and snap up. The first shop off the bus was the Sue Ryder charity shop who had a £1 rail outside the front of the shop and I immediately picked up this Marks and Spencer flannel shirt:

Love the blue/black colour combo, this will be so easy to wear with blue or black jeans and like wise any style jacket too.

Before I actually caught the bus I went into my local Sue Ryder charity shop to check out their offerings. This charity shop has been extremely good to me over the years- I've found an Ossie Clark dress, Thierry Mugler, Jean Paul Gaultier, Stella McCartney, Belstaff as well as top quality high street too. Today was no exception as I found this fabulous navy collarless coat by Valentino Red for just £7.95. It is raincoat material so will be perfect for milder autumn days for smartening up a jeans and shirt:

Not a very good picture unfortunately, but it's really nice in the flesh and also unworn with the tag still attached. I  reserved it and picked it up at the end of my travels- a shirt and coat for less than a tenner can't be bad for a morning out! 

What style of items are you drifting towards this season? I know the oversize cardigan is very popular and I for one am looking out for the right one! Do share what items are on your autumn style wish list! 

Thank you as always for your continued support, reading and commenting- it really is very much appreciated and welcomed and I hope to visit you all back as soon as I can, have a great weekend and a good week ahead too, lovely people!!

Wednesday, September 17

Hotter Shoes-Being Spoilt in Comfort & Style for Autumn/Winter 2014

Hi everyone! As you all know from my previous post back in May I am a real fan of Hotter shoes. My mum has been wearing them for years before I even was converted and after getting a pair of leather desert ankle boots as a Christmas present a couple of years ago, I knew that pair of Hotter footwear wouldn't be the last in my wardrobe.

Hotter are a UK brand with over 50 years of history behind them- a world class factory in Lancashire makes their shoes and boots with over 1.6 million pairs being made every year, making them the biggest shoe manufacturer in the UK. Comfort and style are priority and it's not hard to see why they are continuing to expand in the UK and overseas when they consistently produce trend led, comfortable and durable footwear every new season.

Of course when I was invited to the Autumn/Winter presentation at Kettners in London how could I refuse?  Their Spring/Summer event was absolutely wonderful and I've virtually lived in my pewter Singapore wedges this summer, so I was looking forward to seeing what their new collection was going to be like:

There are some amazing styles to be had, gorgeous ankle boots with faux fur, full length boots in an array of delicious colours and styles

They also feature a lot of colour this season, with some amazingly pretty boots and shoes in rich Autumnal shades if you want to add that extra dimension to your new season outfit

We were split in two teams to do a treasure hunt around Soho, which not only was a lot of fun but proved our new footwear was amazingly comfortable and certainly up to the task in hand! Not only did we win but we all received a bottle of Champagne each too-yay!!

The shoes for this new season are not only pretty but have the classic Hotter comfort concept- shoes that have pillow soft underfoot cushioning, flexible soles, are lightweight and have flexi grooved heels, all as standard:

My choice? It had to be the Shawbury in black, a classic Chelsea boot with a brogue twist detail and just perfect for autumn and winter and for day or evening. It also comes in grey and tan, but I chose black as I knew I would want to be wearing them on a very regular basis: 

Their new collection really has so many different styles that having to choose the right pair purely based on style really is very hard indeed!! If you fancy indulging in a pair of boots or shoes this season, I have some £10 discount vouchers that I will happily forward on-send me an email with your details and I'll pop one in the post for you!!

 Dinner was absolutely fabulous- I thoroughly enjoyed my starter of gravadlax, the confit of duck main course and the chocolate & pear tart with sorbet for desert all were just perfection. The service was faultless as our drinks were constantly topped up and nothing was too much trouble.

A very big thank you to Melanie at Hotter and Michelle and Debbie of Wingfield PR- it was such a privilege and pleasure to be part of the Hotter event and my new Shawburys will be out and about on my feet for weeks and months to come!!

Monday, September 15

Thrift Inspiration....Autumn Classic Must Haves, The Brogue

Hi everyone! I hope you all had a great weekend and what a mix of weather we are having at the moment! The sun is out in spurts and it's really quite nice and warm- those extra layers have been held at bay for the foreseeable future. So when layers are not necessarily needed the next logical style step to think of is footwear. After indulging in some skate shoes and wearing these in between trainers and sandals, I was really pleased to find some long lusted after pair of  shoes last week which are ideal for all seasons- the classic black brogue. Here are my picks of the best this season:

Saint Laurent patent leather, £530

TODS, £270

ASOS Millionaire leather brogues, £35

ASOS brogues, £25

Here are my version- they are vintage Loakes, bought as new and unworn in my local Salvation Army charity shop for just £15. Brogues are such a versatile and stylish alternative to a trainer or skate shoe and can so easily smarten up a jeans and jacket combination too:

To what I wore one day last week for a day out in London- my newly thrifted Monsoon blouse in one of my recent posts, some Reiss skinny jeans which were thrifted last year from my local Sue Ryder charity shop for just £1 in their sale and my Primark skate shoes:

I can't believe how comfortable skate shoes can be, if I'd realised I definitely would have bought some in Spring, but better late than never, huh!

Wishing you all a fabulous week ahead and I do thank you for your continued reading, support and comments- they are so much appreciated and I look forward to visiting you as soon as I can! 

Wednesday, September 3

Transitional Season Dressing in Leather and Chambray Denim, Plus some Autumn Shoe Buys!!

Hi everyone!! As I sit here typing, the weather is really sunny out-not hot and just nice enough for the start of September. On Sunday, London was deliciously warm with cloudy spots here and there, which was why I decided to wear my leather biker jacket as a chance cover up:

Before I went to Worthing, I found this chambray denim sleeveless dress by Oasis from the British Heart Foundation charity shop for £7.50. It's been worn regularly during August and I'll keep it in the wardrobe to pair with a sweater, tights and boots for Autumn too:

When I last met my gorgeous blogger friend Michelle of MyFashionable40s, she asked me if I was going to dip into the skate shoe trend. I remember my answer which at the time was purely seasonally influenced-it was the heart of Summer, but a typical torrential rainy day and I had at that time said to her I doubt it very much-no, in other words!! Well, it's always the way when you say no, you mull it over until you think and say, well yes! So last week the hunt was on for some Autumn appropriate styled ones.

My first pair are these navy leopardprint ones which I picked from T K Maxx at the weekend, a real bargain for just £14.99:

These are the buys I love-the ones where you see something and think yes-that's exactly what I'm looking for-perfect style, colour and pattern and not only that, totally versatility with the rest of my wardrobe too. 

My next find was in Primark earlier today and again a total bargain-just £8 and ticking all the above said boxes again, so I think my entry into the skate shoe trend has now been fully fulfilled!

Many bloggers are compiling their Autumn wishlists and I'm thankful that I'm not really after many things- I really just want a black merino wool crew neck sweater, possibly a grey one too. Also a couple of fine wool scarves too, in leopardprint and tartan.

School term is already with us- my youngest is back tomorrow for his final year at secondary school before college!! So proud of him as he took his Science GCSE a year early and got an 'A'!! I'm hoping this is a sign of things to come for his last year, so despite his cast still not being off his broken wrist it's a good start to 'back to school'!! 

Thanks as always for your continued support, reading and commenting- unfortunately I don't blog that regularly but through bloglovin and my own feed I do regularly read what you are all up to!! 
Wishing you all a sunny week and a lovely weekend to come, whatever you are up to!!


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