A Christmas Message

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From Paris for Christmas ....

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So for the festive season, My little box at Christmas has teamed up with the gorgeous blogger Fleur de Force, whom I follow on YouTube (love her videos so much). I was worried what this box would include as a true Xmas box could have been a little OTT, but I was happy when it arrived yesterday. A good mix of the usual beauty and lifestyle items, this box also had a great balance between pretty and useful - so another happy month (plan to run with this subscription until i am disappointed)

My November

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My Little Box - Cosy

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Smile...

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Some people are lucky enough to be naturals in front of a camera, I have never been one of those people, the minute a camera comes out I either close my eyes or the awkward "Chandler" smile comes out. Luckily I married an equally awkward man and so any photographic moment has a 50/50 chance of being good, but we have both learnt to laugh about it. Our wedding pics were amazing but only because we had a great photographer who put us both at ease but also did less of the posed shots, sometimes the unknown captured moments are the best.

When we bought our house we were given a free session at Venture photography and after a bit of arm twisting, I persuaded hubby to go and see what could be done for two "cameraphobes". We went to the Venture studio in Leicester and met with our photographer Ross, to discuss the tone of the shoot and what we wanted out of the experience. Relaxed, fun shots was the brief we gave and armed with our bag of props (everything from cartoon tee's to my Accessorize camera bag) we embraced the hour shoot and had so much fun. Ross instantly put us both at ease and I have never laughed so hard in my life!!! He was particularly excited at the beginning about the hat i had worn purely to keep my hair dry and the statement necklace i was also wearing, so much so they became a large focus during the shoot. We went for a mix of romantic shots and silly playful ones, so as to "capture our essence as a couple". 

I left the studio with my face hurting from laughing so much but feeling like we would get some great shots and then came the two week wait before the viewing. A nice presentation of all the best shots set to music - Ross had chosen Lily Allen's "Somewhere only we know", which definitely helped to convey the emotion behind the images, which turned out beautifully and not an awkward smile in sight.

Whilst I did enjoy the shoot and we got some beautiful pictures out of it, I would say Venture is very expensive and that is a shame as we were restricted in what we could get based on our budget, however i was pleased with what we did get. 

Here are a few of my favourite images:

My October

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October Accessories Haul

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"A woman makes an outfit her own with accessories" - Oscar De La Renta. 

This month has been all about accessories - a mix of being underwhelmed by the fashion in stores and discovering some hidden gems. The number one item has been my gorgeous Primark wool fedora, which if you follow me on social media you will see I am obsessed and have been wearing constantly but there have been a few other additions...... as you can see.

If the hat fits, wear it..

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TGF Edit: Latest Beauty Loves

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Although i have always loved beauty products, it has really only been the last couple of years that i have started to appreciate them. Before i would always buy the cheapest products, usually supermarket own brands but lately my taste has improved. Probably due to the amount of free samples given away these days with magazines, goodie bags etc that allow you try to before you buy, a concept i fully support. Here is a round up of my current beauty loves, products that i do spend money on and that i have see great results from.....


Tartantastic

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My September

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From Paris with Love......

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"My Little Box aims to delight and surprise you every month"

Monthly subscription beauty boxes are not a new thing, they have been around for a few years now - Glossybox, Birchbox, Glamour Beauty Box and the latest addition to Mr Postman's delivery bag is My Little box. A delightful little company first started in France, that is now finally arriving in the UK. A box offer that is not only different from the others on the market, but also adds a little quirky fun and defiantly a dose of French chic - unlike the other boxes who focus solely on beauty products, My Little Box has diversified and channeled it's french chic into the offer so that the customer gets more than just cosmetics.

Each month has a different theme, with the UK introduction box being "My Little Parisienne Box", a perfect welcome to the French brand. Below are a few of my favourite themes from the French site, hoping these will be replicated for the UK customers, in particular the Geekette box:


Mulberry SS15

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Fashion Week Fancies

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Upping the Fashion Ante

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M&S has become a store worth visiting for more than new undies (although still THE destination for the perfect bra), with beautiful pieces across all collections, and the latest TV creation from the brand shows this. Another glamourous advert that shows all of their sub-brands in one space. If you haven't seen it yet, watch it here and your in for a treat.

After seeing this on TV, i decided to see what else the super brand has in store for the British highstreet in AW14 and found these amazing press shots - many many more online but these were the looks that grabbed my attention and i could see slotting into my wardrobe. A great mix of colours, trends and items - in particular i am excited for the pastel pieces and sixties influences.



Primark Haul

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My August

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The New Beau

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Since deciding to buy my new house, i have been on a fashion detox, spending very little time or money on my wardrobe but since we are almost all settled in, I decided it was time for a treat so this called for a trip to Bicester Village. 

Normally going to Bicester with the intention of shopping means i leave empty handed but not today.....and this trip was all about Kate Spade. A recent addition to my love list, i cannot get enough of this American brand and just how beautiful it is from the product down to the stores themselves, so pleased we do now have a few stores in the UK, to feed my glittery habit. Now i did have a game plan for my trip to the store, knowing that most stores stock is about a year old i was keen to see if my lust item of the last 12 months had made its way to discount heaven. 

After only a few minuets of being in the store i spotted it....hidden at the back in 3 different colours, the 2 Park Avenue Beau bag - I have never been so excited to see a handbag (sad i know). With hubby holding my faithful Mulberry i stood clutching the very bag i had set out to find, and although still more than many people will spend on a handbag (but still less than a new Mulberry) i had to buy it, especially after the sales lady said they had only arrived in the store the day before - fate me thinks! 

Then came the important decisions - small or large size and in black, two tone cream or vibrant geranium?? I decided to go for a small black one, as this was an investment leather piece and although bright pink is gorgeous and very me, it's not that classic or timeless. Plus with my little frame the large version looked more like i was carrying a holdall rather than a handbag! not the look i was going for.

So here she is.....


Channel your inner Carrie Bradshaw

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My June & July

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Mulberry AW14

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"The Mulberry Autumn Winter 2014 season finds inspiration in the colour of the British countryside, embracing rich oaks, misty greys, deep greens and intense oxblood taken from the mystery of the Highlands to the lush rolling hills of Mulberry's home in Somerset."

The campaign photography is the latest work of visual genius Tim Walker, using the beautiful British countryside as a classic background to the brands key items. Although not as whimsical and unexpected as the last few campaigns have been, this set of shots typifies the brands quality, craftsmanship and true British heritage. All that is missing for me is Mulberry monster, my favourite quirk from previous themes, that or a hidden gnome / butterfly.


My May

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Wearable Art

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In recent years the links between art and fashion have become more and more apparent. I have always felt that fashion is art - it is how we express ourselves everyday but i love that designers are really embracing this and creating pieces that really are wearable art. The designer that has really caught my eye recently is Sophia Webster.... i had never heard of her before but every since i saw her collaboration with American super brand J Crew, i have seen her designs everywhere and my Instagram account went crazy with shots from her latest press day and i was so impressed with the variety of pieces and the playful nature of the styles, especially the use of slogan's (not something usually used on footwear) on such feminine shoes. There are a couple of styles i would have loved to have worn at my wedding, so much so i am considering a pair to go with my maid of honour dress for my little sisters wedding - watch this space....

TGF Edit: Summer Sandals

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The summer sun can only mean one thing - time to paint those toenails and don your sandals.... and with such beauties available on the high-street there is no excuse not to find your perfect sunshine partner. Some people love plain styles that will go with everything, others prefer a touch so sparkle or pattern but with so many great options around you are sure to find the pair for you. Personally I like the option of having both - classic and simple, a no brainer option,easy to add to any outfit but I also like something a little more fun especially when jewels and on trend colours are involved.

These are my favourites from the highstreet, with a variety of prices for every pocket and budget - which would you choose?

App L♥VE

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Like most people these days, technology is a big part of my life - i am one of those people who would be miserable without my phone and access to the world. So apart from the obvious everyday apps such as Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest, I wanted to share the other app that has become a must for me:

STYLEBOOK


At home with H&M

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In my never ending quest for finding the perfect furnishings for my new house, i have developed a love for the H&M home range, something i was aware of before but had never really looked, until one boring afternoon when I found several items that caught my eye. The frustrating thing is that this range is only available in the Oxford Street store (selected items) or online and i have had bad experiences with ordering online, so this may well just be something that i lust over but never buy! 

A fairly small range but a good starting point, the brand covers most soft essential items - from cushions and throws to bedding and storage plus a small kitchenware offering but its main focus is textiles. A good range of price points too with many items coming in at under £20. The current range is a great mix of grey's and neutrals with pops of colour, great for me as these are the colours I need! These are my favourite pieces, and I may have to give in and order online, unless I find better elsewhere. 

Gala Glamour

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The Met Gala is one of the most important events in the fashion calendar and following last year's world of punk theme, this year saw a return to a more glamorous dress code. Like so many events, the evening had winners and losers in the style stakes, with most pulling out all the stops to steal the night but a few sparkling horrors have made the worst dressed lists today. With such a wide array of designer gowns gracing the red carpet, alongside a few unexpected appearances like Kendall Jenner in a customsied Topshop dress and a great mix of shapes, from elegant slinky numbers to full on princess ballgowns with the jewels to match there really was a look for all tastes. The Met Gala ball is the ultimate event for fashion and this year's attendants did not fail to bring the glitz and glamour.

These are my favourites dresses from the evening, in particular Emmy Rossum - with such a bright colour and bold floral print she looked amazing and was a nice change from the pallete of monochrome that seemed to rule the event. 

TGF Edit: ESSIE

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Finding the perfect nail polish is for me is just as important as finding the perfect pair of jeans, it can be time consuming but well worth it in the end. Up until last year I was a Barry M addict, with no real favourite shades but at less then £4 a bottle i was always trying something new, including some collours I will never repeat! I remember seeing the Essie brand in magazines and mentioned in my favourite coffee table book, by Emily Schuman from the amazing blog cupcakesandcasmere.com and to my surprise and happiness I discovered the brand finally came to the UK last year and is now stocked in both Boots and Superdrug stores. How I survived before Essie I will never know, even though it is more expensive than a lot of polish brands the extra pennies are well worth it - such glossy, rich colours and I could never make a set of nails last more than 3 days without chips developing, but with Essie I get a perfect set for more than a week. My favourite product is actually the rapid dry top coat "good to go", it drys almost instantly and means I can paint my nails just before bed and wake up without the horrible duvet dents in my manicure, that I get from every other brand.

With a colour for every occasion and outfit, it is not surprise that the UK is loving Essie.
I really enjoyed the quirky story/poem in the about section on the Essie website, a great way to introduce the brand and its' history to new customers - extract taken from Essie.com

-♥-
"once upon a time… a mademoiselle just out of ballet slippers, had an a-list idea. why should a damsel in a dress settle for nails au natural? from this stroke of brilliance, Essie Weingarten created smokin’ hot colors that were cute as a button and haute as hello. with blanc and really red in her carry on, she headed to Vegas, where she mesmerized the limo-scene with her stylenomics.
soon, every scarlett o’hara was jamaica me crazy for essie colors, from blushing bride and prima ballerina to bahama mama and big spender. even the devil’s advocate was sew psyched. it seemed there were no boundaries to mini how high this leading lady could fly.
in lady like fashion, essie sold good as gold, from the coat azure to fifth avenue – all while keeping merino cool. the secret story to success? sure shot chic color with a master plan that’s a cut above the rest, leaving the glamour purse set proclaiming, “it’s genius!" brazilliant essie color has become the shine of the times, proving that beauty is not just a pretty face."
-♥-
With so many gorgeous shades to choose from picking my favourites was hard work but I have narrowed it down to my top 6 colours:

My April

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TGF Edit: Every Girl Needs.......

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A stunning statement necklace, or in my case a whole bunch!


28 and Fabulous

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Grey & Yellow

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Since the day we chose to buy a house, I have been planning in my head what each room will look like, there is even a mood board on my coffee table with magazine clippings and fabric swatches. Even though it is not complete yet and wont be until July, I cannot stop looking longingly through interior design magazine and pinning like mad on pinterest, collating ideas and styles that I want to emulate in my beautiful new house (finding balance with hubby's taste is proving interesting as he has very different taste to me and would happily live a magnolia house!). I have a feeling for the next few months my fashion addition may give way to a house one instead - especially as I want to find some more interesting and individual pieces which will involve some hunting for, need to go to places like Home Sense who have so many amazing unique pieces.

My current obsession is a grey and yellow colour scheme that I have seen everywhere, this is something that i want to use in the living room, as it is quite a neutral palette and isn't too girly.  I love the mix of the neutral grey tones mixed with the bright yellow (yellow isn't normally a colour I like, not a flattering fashion colour on me however in the home I think it will be amazing). The beautiful birdcage wallpaper below is from B&Q and would make an amazing feature wall, however hubby is not impressed so not sure that will happen but I may need to buy a roll to make some pictures instead, so I can still use within the room as it is just gorgeous.

Highstreet Haul

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Just a quick post to show you this months purchases. Why is it when you have money to spend you can walk round every shop and find nothing yet the day you pop to town to return one item, you come back with six more? Well this pretty much sums up what happened!!
Due to buying a house i am having to curb my spending however i have a weakness for fashion and so need to get my fix in the discount stores. I was particularly impressed with Matalan, i have always visited for cheap basics and summer holiday items, so was very surprised by some of the more fashion forward pieces that i discovered.

My favourite pieces from this haul are the Lips cami top and the colourful sunglasses, a nice change from my style of usual black and oversized sunnies. 


My March

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The New L♥VE of my Wardrobe

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TGF Edit: ♥ Accessorize

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In recent years the Accessorize brand has impressed me season after season and the SS14 range is another triumphant collection in my eyes. I used to find some items overpriced however the amount of compliments i receive when wearing an Accessorize piece make me happy to pay that little extra for such beautiful and individual styles. I love the mix of statement jewellery, playful colour/print and the quirky pieces such as the camera shaped bag below as well as the traditional items the brand is well known for. 
Below are my 6 favourite pieces:

I already own the Rio Ultimate necklace, couldn't resist this stunning pastel piece, it looks fabulous with my spring wardrobe and the animal snood is a piece that the lovely @FashionLind couldn't resist, check out how she styles it on Instagram. I need to find the sunglasses in my local store and see how they look, as i have always worn black or tortoiseshell sunnies i don't know how these will look on but excited to see and embrace a bolder style. The last piece i am in L♥VE with is a gorgeous embellished breton stripe clutch that i spotted in Look magazine last month, at £32 it is a little more than i would normally spend on a clutch but it is just so beautiful i must have it - just waiting for a tweet to tell me it is in stock!


♥ PRINTS

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My February

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TGF Edit: Soap & Glory

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Although i use beauty products everyday i am not one who gets easily excited by a new brand or product, but i do have certain brands that i always use, like Aussie for my hair, Essie for my nails and Colgate for my teeth. However in December i discovered Soap & Glory (My December) when i bought one of Boots deal of the week gift sets. Since then i have been regularly using the goodies from this set and have discovered a new favourite brand, all the body products in this set have made my skin feel smooth and soft and not dry like most others i have tried. When it came to buying my skincare products this month i decided to try something new and test out some of the S&G range to see if lives up to the body products. Although most of this range is a tad more expensive than i would normally spend i do think skincare is one area that shouldn't be skimped on, plus this collection is included in the Boots 3 for 2 offer so i do save some pennies. 

Mulberry Miss

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I am normally a massive Mulberry fan and have been for years now, but this London Fashion Week i was totally disappointed - partly because there was no show, just a preview, this is usually a fantastic event that reminds me why i love the brand. Secondly i was not loving the new addition to the handbag family - for me the bags are what make the brand and i wait eagerly each fashion week to see the latest addition but this year underwhelmed was my only feeling when i saw the Cara bag's.


TGF Edit: Midi styling

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Always loved the longer length skirts - but was never quite sure how to style one but since the midi is everywhere at the moment and is a key piece for any wardrobe this season i thought it was about time i find out how. Pinterest is a wash with so many new midi skirt outfits, and i have been so inspired i have ordered a fabulous black textured one from H&M (hate waiting for it to be delivered!), and i am excited to style it up. 

Whether it is working a monochrome look or being bold with colour and print, the midi skirt lends itself to many an occasion - perfect for the office or a party dependent on your accessories. Layering up with a leather jacket, blazer or statement knit over a striped or slogan tee, these outfits below all have 1 thing in common, simple styling. Of all the looks below i think my favourite has to be the cream tulle styled with a grey shrunken blazer, and belt, although i do feel a statement necklace would have completed the look. 


TGF Edit: Limited Collection

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Many moons ago before i entered the world of buying, i worked in my local M&S store and during this time the sub brand Limited Collection was launched. Due to the size of the Northampton store we were not lucky enough to have this new range however the odd piece would appear through returns or during sale periods and i loved to see these younger, more fashionable pieces. Nowadays the range has gone from strength to strength with some truly beautiful pieces at reasonable prices. You can imagine my surprise when today i popped into my local store to pick up some birthday cards and i was met by a new look store with none other than a dedicated area just for Limited Collection! The store looked fresh with the new season collection and i took practically everything to the changing room, i was just so impressed with the variety and style. Particularly loving the lips print dress, very Lulu Guinness print in a flattering shape - not your usual M&S piece. 
These are The Glitter fashionista favourites:

Perfect Pairings

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One of my 2014 resolutions was to try and spend less but wear more. I have so many great pieces in my wardrobe that i never wear or always wear in a certain way - i wanted to mix it up and create some new combinations, especially as i am trying to embrace new styles and especially mixing prints. Any new pieces i do buy need to be items i truly love. One thing i realised when going through my wardrobe - i own a lot of Topshop pieces especially dresses, think i may own enough to have shares in the brand, but what can i say - if the dress fits buy it in every colour! Below are my current favourite looks:

My January

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Club to Catwalk

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If you are a lover of fashion this exhibition is a must see. Based around the era that became the foundation of the fashion world we know and love, the 80's were the birth place of many amazingly talented designers still wowing the fashion world today, including my favourite - Vivienne Westwood. This exhibition showcases some of the most influential designers of the decade and also the original street styles and fashion tribes that heavily impacted their work. Although a small exhibition it was a collection of 85 quirky outfits that sum up the most outrageous fashion decade and just how much street style has affected what we see on the catwalk .

The designer pieces show the bold and exciting new looks of the era, by the most experimental young designers of the decade, including Vivienne Westwood, Betty Jackson, Katharine Hamnett, Wendy Dagworthy and John Galliano. An interesting collection of different designers, some of which i had not heard of before, i especially liked John Galliano's pieces, although i am used to his work being a lot more flamboyant and this was quite reserved, apart from the ornate head piece - perfect for any occassion! Below are my favourite's from the showcase:

Spring Wardrobe

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So spring has sprung on the highstreet, even if the weather hasn't yet received the memo and i am excited to start adding some spring pieces to my wardrobe to brighten up what has been a rather dull winter, with so much black and grey. I am yet to see whole new collections as Northampton is not quite the centre of the fashion world and usually only has snippets of a full range, however the following pieces have already caught my eye in both store and online - a collection of pieces that would work well with my wintery favourites for now but add some much needed colour and newness. My new years fashion resolution is to buy less and wear more - with some gorgeous pieces already in my wardrobe i am trying to only buy items i love.

I bought the New Look jumper this weekend and can't wait to wear it next week layered over my favourite dress with a statement necklace. The Topshop dress has been ordered and arrives at the end of next week - just in time for my London trip. This will be a great piece for work as it is a great everyday shape but has a fun element and a quirky edge, it is also a different colour for me as i am not normally one for neon green but the subtle use of this bright against the simple grey intrigues me. The remainder of the pieces i will get as and when i find them - a trip to Oxford street next weekend i am sure will help to locate them and probably many more. 

Latest Reads

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Before Christmas i visited Waterstones and as usual spent way too much as i seem unable to visit and not leave with at least 1 book. My local store in Northampton has an great fashion department (mainly due to having an amazing fashion program at the university) and there is always something new to tickle my literary taste buds. This trip was no exception and resulted in 3 new additions to my bookcase and i thought i would share them with you....


Spring has sprung

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Seeing this image has really put me in a great summer mood. All the brands are shifting focus to the new season and this was part of a great email I received today, with a creative nod to New Years resolutions, check it out here.....I loved Boden's winter collection, especially all the monochrome and tweeds but I have to say this new collection is just as gorgeous, if not better. Every time I log on I find more new pieces that I want to own, at least if my purse allowed.

Such a British brand but not in a stuffy way. Joules is a little too Pony club for me, with very prim traditional pieces and I used to think that about Boden but recently the brand has sparked my interest. The recent use of colour and print is so modern and fresh yet still retains the simplicity and modesty that you expect to see. A great brand for all ages - I really love the little girls collection, some pieces I really wish were available in big girl sizes too and Mini Boden is even cuter! My only annoyance is the prices - I am all for quality but I do feel some items are over priced but it is a price bracket tat works for the brand so I rely on discounts and special offers.

1. Richmond Blazer £79, 2. Wool Peter Pan Dress £130, 3. Holland Park Coat £140

So far these three pieces are on my wish list. A great floral blazer - perfect for jazzing up a pair of jeans, a playful dress with Peter Pan collar, in my favourite shade of bubblegum pink and this striped coat that reminds me of a Humbug sweet (similar to a style in Oasis from FW13 that I was never able to find in my size). 3 different pieces that really give a sense of whats' to come in spring - particularly loving the influx of bright colours, especially those in the pink/purple family.

Lets hope the weather catches up with my happy summery mood soon.


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