Summer 2014

<< pre-school adventures. Making the most of the few days of just me and this little one before she starts school in September >>

Flossie

<< dining alfresco >>

Dining alfresco

<< lunch with blog and twitter friends at the beautiful Limewood >>

Amanda & Jo Limewood Limewood Jennie & Me Limewood

<< paddling, fishing & old fashioned fun at the river >>

Old fashioned fun at the river

<< coffee at Cote and early evening supper at our local pizza hang out, Woodfire >>

Woodfire Coffee at Cote

<< London fun and posing in-front of the eco-wall at the new J.Crew store, Sloane Square >>

London J.Crew Sloane Square Camden

Now for next chapter of Summer…three weeks in Alderney. Better get packing!

L x

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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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Summer essentials from Connock London

There are murmurs in the My Pollyanna household of the H word. We may and I stress, may be going on holiday. So this naturally got my thinking about me packing essentials, though truth be told holiday or no holiday, these will definitely be getting my through the Summer.

Eau de Parfum Connock London

Since Connock London sent me their Kukui Eau de Parfum and body oil I have been completely obsessed with them. On two levels they fit into my life perfectly. Firstly, if these legs are to be on public display they have to be in tip-top condition. With the warmer weather and the appearance of skirts and shorts the oil has been my go-to beauty product. It’s beautifully moisturising with no greasiness (which if I’m honest was my main concern with using an oil). It leaves a soft, glowy finish to look neatly polished.

Secondly, I’m really not a perfume person. Although I have a small collection that, if I remember, I may have a quick spritz of in the morning but I’ve never found anything that I’ve wanted to wear everyday. Scents are really personal and I suppose I’ve never found one that is just ‘me’.

Maybe it’s been my yearning for a holiday but I’ve been totally taken in by the beachy, fresh scent of the signature Eau de Parfum from Connock London. The ingredients include Italian Bergamot, Moroccan Rose, White Jasmine and Calla Lily, Sandalwood, Vetiver, White Amber and layers of cashmere and sheer musk. Divine.

And if it’s good enough for Goop then it’s good enough for me!

Sunglasses / Espadrilles / Lipstick /

What are you Summer essentials?
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Steve Madden sandals

So there is still no holiday on the horizon…poor me…but is that going to stop me planning my summer wardrobe? Errr no. You never know, we might even get a hot and sunny Summer here and in any case who needs a real reason to go shoe shopping? Not me.

Since I clapped eyes on a pair of block heels last month I’ve started reconsidering my Summer footwear choices. Perhaps I need to be a little more adventurous. But by this I’m obviously still going to be sticking to my ‘classic’ roots. Something that has a classic look with a nod to the current trends.

On my online travels I can came across Sarenza – they describe themselves as “Your ultimate shoe closet” and that they certainly are. I’ve compiled my Summer shoe shopping list from the vast (and I mean really vast) selection. From flip flops and wedges to heels and ankle boots there is an excellent selection from brands such as Steve Madden, Carvela, Birkenstock and Antik Batik.

After a little (well, a lot actually) convincing, I have finally been converted to the virtues of the espadrille and I love these. *If* I were to be going on holiday these would be perfect for throwing on with denim cut offs to go to the beach.

Blue stripe espardrilles

Floral espadrillesPastel stripe espardrilles

 Stripy pastel espadrilles

Taking it up a notch or two with the espadrille wedge. Wedges are my favourite holiday footwear choice. There’s something about being able to get away with a wedge and short shorts on holiday. Something I wouldn’t consider at home!red wedge espardrilles

Georgia Rose red wedgesGold wedge espardrilles

Georgia Rose metallic wedges

 One pair of shoes I will be definitely buying, with or without a holiday is flat sandals. I love these silver ones from Georgia Rose with boyfriend jeans and nautical stripes.

Silver sandals on model

Steve Madden sandals

Embellished sandals by Steve Madden
Guess black

Black sandals by Guess

From today until Sunday 1st June readers of My Pollyanna have an exclusive discount code for a 15% discount off 1st time orders over £75 (with free delivery too). Enter the code, MYPOLLYSAR.

How’s your Summer shoe shopping coming along?

This post has been sponsored by Sarenza. 

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Spring Make-up trends

This season I’m covering my top three make-up trends for Spring/Summer – really tough to whittle them down to just three, but here goes.

All of these looks will work for any skin colour and they all share these things in common – they’re fast, low-key, feel fresh, will suit everyone and very simple.

1. Bold lashes.

This season go seriously lashy with two or three coats of mascara on the top lashes and one on the bottom set with flushed rosy cheeks (Max Factor’s Miracle Touch Creamy Blush is perfect for this) and just a slick of clear or tinted lip balm for a pretty and youthful, wear with anything look.

Lisa Hancox make up

Find a mascara that provides volume and length and road-test a few to make sure they’re smudge and heat-proof. I love the gentle yet effective Clarins Wonder Waterproof (£21) and Max Factor False Lash Effect Fusion for everyday (£11.99).

2. Soft and modern, washed smoky eyes.

Create an up-to-date smokey eye with a pale neutral gold or pale berry/plum shadow (creams applied with a fluffy brush work best for creating this light finish effect).

For a gold, try Benefit’s Creaseless Cream Shadow in My Two Cents (£15.50).  Pair with a peach or coral blusher.

Lisa Hancox Make Up gold smokey eyes

For the plum, Maybelline’s Colour Tattoo in Metallic Pomegranate (£4.99). Pair with a mid-pink blusher for freshness.

Lisa Hancox Spring make up trends

Go without any eyeliner and finish with one coat of mascara top and bottom and keep the lips natural with lip balm.

3. Bright matte lips.

Both pink (my favourite for spring/summer) and orange lips were a feature on practically every London runway. I know I know, but don’t be scared! Orange can come in many forms and you can interpret the look with an gorgeous mandarin gloss.

Try NARS Lipgloss in Wonder (£18.50), a light coral lip crayon like the new Revlon Colour Burst Matte Balm in Audacious (£7.99) and Bourjois Colour Boost Lip Crayon in Orange Punch (£7.99) or keep it dramatic with a matte finish lippie – TopShop’s lipstick in Charmed (£8) is a really wearable peach-orange.

Lisa Hancox Spring make up trends

And I promise, bright orange really does look amazing on olive and darker skins. Make sure you’re your base is flawless, neutralising any redness in the skin.

Wear either orange or pink with youthful bold eyebrows, one coat of mascara on the top lashes, the lightest dusting of a pale peach blusher and a little subtle highlighter on your cheekbones if you like.

I hope you enjoy experimenting!

Lisa x

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Baukjen Summer Collection

The Summer collection from Baukjen landed yesterday and as part of my whirlwind twenty-four hours in London last week I was fortunate enough to see it for myself. From gorgeous butter-soft leather to luxe silk; jackets and trousers cut to perfection, the Baukjen Summer Collection exudes simplicity, elegance and sophistication.

Baukjen Summer Collection

With classic at the heart of my own styling I’m drawn to brands that interpret current trends in a classic way and Baukjen does it seamlessly. The Summer collection is effortless, luxurious and slick.

Baukjen Summer Collection

My hero piece of the collection is the Ravenna Leather skirt, in a subtle nude pink – I’m thinking wedding guest outfit for an unexpected alternative to the traditional floral dress.

Baukjen Summer Collection

Subtle snake prints add a touch of personality to the tailoring.

Baukjen Summer Collection

Baukjen Summer Collection

Top of my list though is the Marseille Relaxed Pants. Beautifully lightweight with a stunning drape. I love them styled with heels but can image slouching round the pool in them on holiday too.

Baukjen Summer Collection

Baukjen Summer Collection

Beautiful isn’t it? The Baukjen Summer collection is the perfect answer to elegant, cool, understated Summer style.

Click here to view the full Summer collection on the Baukjen website now.

What’s your favourite piece?

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This week I have been inspired by Nina Garcia after reading her book ‘The Style Strategy’ about staying chic and saving money. Since boxing up and putting away all my Summer clothes I feel like my wardrobe needs a boost, an injection of new life. The plan – to mix things up a bit. Re-energise and re-invent my wardrobe.

Since changing my mindset and buying fewer items over the past few years, I have a great collection of some classic pieces that won’t date and go out of fashion – mostly because they were never in fashion in the first place! This does, however, leave things a little bland. What I feel I need is something to give a boost, that will change the way I see what I already have before I go and buy anything new.

There is a great quote from from the book…[quote]Being chic isn’t about the most expensive dress or the latest trend. It’s about being you.[/quote]With this in mind, I’m going to critically evaluate what I already have and have the confidence to mix things up. It’s easy to fall into the trap of always putting the same outfits together. So I’m going to change my wardrobe around a little and hang things next to each other that I don’t normally wear together. [new_line][new_line][quote]Make the most of what you have. Be creative, be innovative, be confident. Nina Garcia[/quote] Do you need to reinvent your wardrobe?

(featured image from ninagarcia.com)

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