Nothing says simplicity like black

With only a few days until we head off on holiday, packing is well and truly under way. Well, at least the suitcases are down from the loft! Taking expert packing tips from one of my favourite bloggers, Laura Fantacci I’ve decided to slim down the contents of my suitcase and keep to a monochrome theme. But for a long time black has been the least favoured colour in my wardrobe, it just doesn’t suit me. But with a little colour from the sun on my skin and a very lonely looking black jersey dress in my wardrobe, last weekend I ventured out my comfort zone and did it. I wore black and actually LOVED it.

Trying out new things can make you feel adventurous, like lighting up a little sparkle of opportunity. Though my main thought on this occasion was…. “What have I been missing out on?” And I never like to miss out.

If I am to continue my new found fondness for black then my buying strategy will still remain the same; considered and cautious. Gone are the days of impulsive buys (yes I can hear those sniggers coming from those that have been privy to my buying habits in the past but every purchase I make is highly investigated and deeply considered I can assure you!) I need to know that what I buy is going to go the distance both in style and in quality. Obviously a few things will slip through the net but then it would be boring not to have any spontaneity wouldn’t it?!

Inspired by it’s simplicity and effectiveness, I’ve put together a few of my favourite black pieces just right for holiday…

Topshop Embroidered strappy jumpsuit

the embroidered jumpsuit from Topshop

Accessorize Lenia cutwork shirt

the beach cover up from Accessorize

J.Crew grid dot maxi dress

the maxi dress from J.Crew

Reiss Bryana Black skirt

ok, not strictly black but lovely all the same…the monochrome stripy skirt from Reiss

Hush Homewear Maxi tube skirt

and finally, the simplest of them all the black maxi tube skirt from Hush. Timeless.

 What I love about the simplicity of black is that you can make a very quiet statement by wearing it cleverly and not as an after thought. Subtle details like eyelets and embroidery is all you need.

 Anyone else new to black?

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fashion bloggers

Having spent three sticky days in London at the beginning of the week, it has been glorious to have had the rest of the week with my feet firmly cemented to the ground back home. It’s been a veritable luxury to be back to family life and trawling backwards and forwards to the post office to post my ebay wares. Though I love the bright lights and glamour of the city there is little so comforting as basking in the countryside sunshine in floaty dresses and denim cut-offs.

It was fun to play dress up though and have an excuse to put together some outfits I don’t usually get to wear, something suitable for meeting those fashion folk. Between a couple of meetings I found this amazing black wall and couldn’t resist playing fashion blogger.

STYLE OBJECTIVE: Effortless trend.

Understated is all well and good but sometimes I want to put it out there (see the neon skirt!) and say actually I am confident enough to wear this. Being careful of-course to look like I have made no effort whatsoever. As a result, my outfit for Tuesday consisted of coated black jeans (Oasis), a floaty grey marl tank (Whistles), nude wedges (Jimmy Choo) and some gold statement jewellery (J.Crew).

Fashion bloggers

fashion bloggersfashion bloggersfashion bloggers

All of these items are core wardrobe staples that I’ve had for a very long time but here are some similar alternatives.

// sunglasses  // tank  // coated jeans  //

My girls are on school holidays now and I am determined to take control this time. Embracing the lack of routine and all round anarchy instead of resisting. So far so good and with just over a week before we head to the Channel Islands for three weeks…well in fact as I write this, we only have one way tickets who knows it could be longer…I’m feeling positive.

Oh the pressure of holiday packing…wish me luck and have a great weekend!

L x

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Style diary My Pollyanna

I’m on my third day of London day tripping today and as I get to dress in a way that is slightly different to my usual get-up I thought I’d diarise.

Day One, Busted Knees + Kimono

Everything here is old, which I love. I love to bring things out from the depths of the wardrobe and put them together and still feel up-to-date. The sign of a good buy too…Busted knees + kimono

From the top down…

Topshop kimono – I love this one from New Look and this one from ASOS.

Silk cami, from Winter Kate – lacey one here from Jigsaw in same dusky hue.

Old, battered and beloved Jbrand skinnies with busted knees through sheer love. Here’s some already done for you from H&M with frayed hems – love.

Sandals (equally as battered and loved), by Tory Burch. These are similar but take a look at the Tory Burch website anyway…it’s amazing stuff!

Be back later in the week,

L x

 

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Coast yellow skirt

Yesterday was a very special Monday. A great day spent catching up with some of the loveliest friends that I have made through the blog and the wonderful world of digital media. Definitely more to be said on that another day…

But when mulling over what I was going to wear for the occasion my thought processes were mainly focussed on understated and elegant. But instead I went neon. Well it’s not everyday you get to have lunch at Lime Wood is it?

The skirt is (very) bright and it’s also quite full and heavy so to play it down I went for a plain white tee and espadrille wedges.

Coast yellow skirt

It’s in the Coast sale reduced from £75 to £45  so grab it now for the rest of the Summer and next year.

BUYING TIP : Sizing is small so I went up a size (12, 16 & 18 have sold out).

Coast yellow skirt

Would you go neon?!

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Hair at George Northwood featured

After going for the drastic chop around six months ago from very long hair to a chin length bob I was pleased with the overall effect of going from long to short but those around me will know that I’ve never quite been satisfied with the style. I knew exactly what I wanted but never seemed to be able to achieve it. Only recently had I been more satisfied because it had reached a length where I could pull it back into a bun again.

One thing that’s always been on my  “Things I really want to do but I know is extravagant” list is to go to a London salon with a well known stylist. So, when WITblog published a 20% discount at George Northwood – stylist to Rosie Huntington-Whitely and Alexa Chung no less – it seemed the timing was just right. I’d seen what he’d achieved with Laura’s hair and I felt confident. The last thing I wanted was to pay through the roof simply because of a famous name.

Here’s my bulky, dark mass of hair before…

My Pollyanna hair before

I arrived last Thursday at the Wells Street salon just in the nick of time for my 11am appointment. It was so comfortable yet stylish and homely that my fears of it being a scary, intimidating place were immediately put to bed.

George Northwood hair Washing stations George Northwood hair salon

 

You can see more beautiful images of the salon at George Northwood on his website here.

I sit for a couple of moments before I meet Amy who will be doing my colour. She was young, passionate and enthusiastic without being annoying (you know what I mean…) and her ideas brought a huge smile to face and an even bigger sigh of relief. She got me.

Amy explained that she was going to cover my hair with a tint (I had tonnes of grey to mask) then using a technique called Balayage she would run “natural, sun kissed colour artfully scattered throughout the hair”. Ahhhh, it sounded amazing and I was totally convinced.

George Northwood Salon

After a minty manicure by resident nail technician, Magda, coffee, water and homemade shortbread by George’s mum my colour was ready to be washed off and I’m directed upstairs to meet Lotte.

George Northwood hair cutting station

Lotte is George’s graduate. Having been trained closely by George Northwood I had every confidence in her and again, she didn’t disappoint.

Colour by Amy at George Northwood

Since having my initial hair cut there was one thing I’d always resented and that was looking mumsy. I wanted to be modern and finally Lotte delivered exactly and precisely what I had been after.

It does sound gushy and dramatic but I’ve had weeks and months of disappointment with my hair in the past and to feel like I have a style and colour that I feel suits me and doesn’t drain me is so uplifting. Nothing like a good hair cut to put a spring in your step!

Cut by Lottie at George Northwood

I really can’t recommend visiting the George Northwood salon highly enough for all out hair satisfaction.

L x

 

 

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Topshop one piece

With the murmurs of a holiday escalating to full blown booking of flights (wahoo!), like a dog being freed from it’s lead I was set free amongst the holiday wardrobe pickings. First stop, swim/beach wear.

After seeing one of my favourite bloggers, Laura Fantacci writer of WITblog wearing this beautifully elegant one-piece by Isabel Marant on The Grace Tales last year it’s always been in the back of mind. The look was so chic and understated I thought I’d give it a shot.

Laura Fantacci The Grace Tales

Image via The Grace Tales

 

As if I needed further convincing, the final clincher was seeing an Instagram pic from Alex Stedman of The Frugality with her strapless one-piece from Topshop. A matter of days later when I “happened to be passingTopshop I dipped in and came out with said one-piece (above).

But I’ve also seen these three lovely one-pieces from Marks & Spencer that are definitely worth consideration…

Marks & Spencer one pieces

1. Abstract print

2. Tropical

3. Polka dots

Bikini or one-piece for you this year?

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Staying in control

Juggling lots of different elements of my life tests me to me absolute limit. The feeling of achievement and productivity cannot be beaten but getting to that point can be a bit of a bumpy ride. I like to feel in control. To get to a place where I’m ahead and ready to proactively move on to the next job is always my ultimate goal. There’s nothing worse than that feeling of spiralling further down into the depths of disorganisation or on a good day where you feel like you’re just about treading water.

But there’s always a balance for me. I love having control but being super organised doesn’t come naturally and in all honestly I find it a tad boring. There’s a part of me that likes things a little bit random and I enjoy the ride of flying by the seat of my pants. Getting that perfect balance is the hard part.

Putting more on my plate lately has forced me into orderly habits and I have to admit I quite like it. Here are three of the ways I keep productive.

Organisation tips

 

As boring as it sounds, one of my biggest hurdles when keeping top of things is putting the washing away. I can do the washing, I can hang it up but putting it away is my nemesis. It trips me up every week. The pile would get higher and higher which would then lead to other things not being done (I always find this, once I start losing control in one area I quickly lose control elsewhere too).

The other week I sat and identified the things that make me feel out of control and focussed on making sure that even if I don’t do anything else, I do those things. And it worked. It’s still a conscious behaviour but it seems to be working.

Here’s to a productive week!

L x

 

 

 

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