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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Donna Ida denim

The ongoing saga of hunting down the perfect boyfriend jeans had become something of a drain. I’d admired the slouchy, relaxed look with smart jacket and heels but failed miserably at coming anywhere close to pulling the look off myself. I’d lost count at how many pairs I’d tried on and had almost come to terms with the fact that this was just not a style for me.

I don’t like quitting though. And so, the hunt went on.

Last week I had the incredible experience of the Denim Clinic at Donna Ida in Belgravia. My own stylist with expert advice to guide me through all the subtle differences in the different styles of boyfriend jeans. Immediately I was told I needed to go at least one size bigger than I normally take – for my body shape this was an absolute revelation! No wonder they’d all looked so ridiculous in the past.

Donna Ida

The service at the denim clinic means that you find the right jeans for your body shape. The girls at Donna Ida believe that “Whatever your shape, size and sense of style, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be wearing jeans”.

Once I’d found the right sizes, I was styled from top to toe and with the Donna Ida photographer, Hayley we took to the streets of Belgravia. Well, you know, as you do on a Thursday lunchtime.

Look One

J Brand Aidan Boyfriend Jeans (Santiago wash) / IRO Aubrey Jacket  / Joie Alicia Tank (Porcelaine)Donna Ida Denim Clinic

Donna Ida Denim ClinicDonna Ida Denim ClinicLook Two

Nobody Beau Boyfriend Jeans (Guild) / Each X Other Leather Biker Jacket  / Simeon Farrar Negative TeeDonna Ida Denim ClinicDonna Ida Denim ClinicLook Three
J Brand Jake Boyfriend Jeans (Pure White) / IRO Treyton Jacket  /   Equipment Signature Shirt Ladybug PrintDonna Ida denim clinicDonna Ida denim clinic

But which did I go for…check back tomorrow to see!

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I have recently bought the jbrand Grayson skinny cargos in Vintage Grey Spruce, from one of my favourite denim boutiques, Mimi Noor in Bath.

Here is why I love them…

1. Skinny (& stretchy) fit - flattering and comfortable.

2. Detailing – large pockets positioned perfectly that are careful not to add bulk to this area. Concealed pockets close to the waistband adding extra detail.

3. Warm - it’s getting colder and I need to be cosy. They have the signature soft, luxe finish synonymous with jbrand.

Jbrand Grayson

4. On trend – detail and colour inspired by the military trend.

5. Trans-seasonal – tuck inside boots now or wear with a classic pump in warmer months.

6. Dress up or down – pair with heels in the evening for instant edgey-glam.

They also come in Vintage Black, Vintage Dim Grey, Vintage Natural & Vintage Olive. I love all of them.

I’ve worn them here with a fur gilet and black suede heels.

What do you think?
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I am all about investment and getting the most from your wardrobe. Recently, I’ve been trying (fairly successfully so far) to combine different areas of my wardrobe to try and increase it’s ‘breadth’. I’ve looked at items in isolation and tried to see how I could I dress them up for the evening or down for the day. There is one combination though that I keep coming back to time and time again. The white shirt under jumper combo. The versatility of this seems to just go on and on. Shirt from Topshop, jumper from Zara.

Here is how I wear mine.

White shirt and Joseph trousers

The Joseph cigarette trouser and leopard heels for smart occasions.

White shirt brogues

For effortless school run style Paige denim ripped jeans with chunky brogues are easy casual.

White shirt and long bootsFor cooler days long boots and skinnies are safe and stylish.

What’s your most versatile item?

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An Investment…

I have to admit, I live in jeans. Since giving up my career to have my children and live a life of domestic bliss (*coughs*), jeans have been my most reliable wardrobe friend. Never has an item been so important. They see my through the school run, walks in the woods, dinner out and most formal occasions too. (Featured in the Perfect ‘Going Out’ top post). But is there such a thing as the perfect pair?

7FAM with scarf and pumps

I believe they deserve investment and a lot of love and care once you have them. Since discovering luxury American denim I have never gone back. You can usually get them one size smaller because they are so soft with that perfect amount of stretch, giving a really flattering fit. Jennifer Aniston pulls off a great pair of jeans, always in my opinion, managing to make them look smart.

Jeans

If they really are an important part of your wardrobe I would invest as much as you can afford into a really great pair of jeans. There are lots of other things to think about too, such as pocket size and position and washes and waist height but that’s for another day.

Paige and brogues

My favourite brands are jbrand, 7 for all Mankind, Paige and Goldsign. Of all the styles, jeggings are at the core of my collection (which is not that vast – quality not quantity!). They’re the perfect jean for this season to wear with boots. They are also super, super comfortable…am I allowed to say that?!

My Collection…
  • One ‘everyday’ pair – casual & comfortable.
  • One ‘distressed’ pair – contrast with floaty silk tops or cashmere. Great for evenings.
  • One ‘cropped’ pair – elegant, timeless and perfect with pumps for smart/casual.
  • One ‘coloured’ pair – mix it up, why not?!

Pile of jeans

Taking a trip to a denim boutique will take the stress out of endless hours of trying on. The staff are dedicated to denim so will be able to find you your perfect pair. My favourite boutiques are Mimi Noor, Trilogy and Donna Ida.

Have you found the perfect pair?

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I had waited for years but this year I bought one of my all time favourite investment pieces – the Burberry trench coat. JT and I took a special trip to the new Regent Street store on a cold and rainy (well it had to be really didn’t it?!) January day and spent a while gawping and gasping at the array of gorgeous Burberry-ness that we were surrounded by. Next time you’re in London, head there. The store itself is incredible.

Burberry Regent Street

As soon as there is a dark cloud in the sky, my trench comes out. It’s an amazingly versatile coat. Something that I look for in an investment is that it has to work on many levels, be classic and be a great fit – the trench ticks all those boxes and more. For one more, it’s practical!

It’s great dressed up or down. Here are a couple of ways that I style mine.

Style Me - the trench, classic
Trench £219 Aigle / Belt £175 Mulberry / Shirt £93 Thomas Mason for JCrew / Fedora £55 Whistles / Boots £145 Steve Madden at John Lewis / Jeans £185 jbrand 811 skinnies Donna Ida

This outfit (above) will see you through so many situations. School run, coffee with friends, shopping…endless!Dress trench

Trench as above / Stripey dress £60 Oasis / Red dress £335 DVF Harrods / Heels £525 Christian Louboutin Net-a-Porter / Bag £350 Aspinal of London John Lewis
How you would you style a trench?

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Embracing my new style rules, I was going to venture out of my navy and greige comfort zone and take on ‘summer brights’. As I live in skinny jeans, it seemed only right that I should start there.

[quote]”Buy the best you can afford and you’ll only buy once“[/quote]

My philosophy with jeans is, “Buy the best you can afford and you’ll only buy once“. I’m a big believer in having fewer, good quality items that wear and wash well that you will value more. So, with trepidation, I go forth on the hunt for my bright jeans. I head straight to Mimi Noor, my favourite denim boutique in Bath (yes I travel that far!) and dive on in….

Immediately, I am united with the jbrand 811, mid-rise skinny in Kumquat. A soft, coral colour that I knew would work well with neutrals and block colours. Sold.

[frame_center src=”http://www.mypollyanna.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/IMG_2872.jpg” href=””]Floral pumps: French Sole by Jane Winkworth[/frame_center]I wear them at every opportunity, they’re great dressed up for a summer party or with my beloved navy and pumps for everyday casual.[frame_center src=”http://www.mypollyanna.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/IMG_2866.jpg” href=””]Bag: Anya Hindmarch. Probably the most universal bag I own. Goes with everything! Shoes: Jimmy Choo. Classic neutral wedge bought on sale 3 years ago. These come out time after time due to their versatility. I’d always rather have one ‘special’ pair that I treasure.[/frame_center]

I didn’t think I could do it, but I’ve proved myself wrong and they seem to have created somewhat (or should I say kumquat??! – sorry that’s terrible!) of an addiction to brights. So have the confidence and just GO BRIGHT!

Laura x 

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