Thursday, 30 September 2010

Classic contemporary copper jewellery

Growing up, accessorizing was straight forward.  Jewellery was simply earrings, chain, bracelet, ring, watches in traditional precious metals such as silver or gold and precious or semi precious stones.  The most you worried about was what carat gold it was. In some instances it was a matter of inheriting a brooch or watch from your mother, grandmother etc.

Now jewellery especially handmade jewellery has become more exotic, contemporary and chunkier made in a varying range of other metals such as copper and brass and materials like leather, clay and recycled material for example glass etc.  Categories such as ethnic jewellery, african beaded jewellery, copper jewellery are just some of the new categories that exist now.  Some of you when thinking about copper jewellery are reminded of simple copper bracelets worn for medical purposes and may not be thinking about the trendy fashion accessory like this handmade copper jewellery gift set entitled "Grapevine" that makes the most unique jewellery gifts for her.  

what's your idea of the little black dress?

Ah the little black dress!!!!.....  every womans must have wardrobe essential.  Conventionally the little black dress has usually been a slim fitting dress usually a black shift dress sleeveless and sometimes mini in length.  But ideally the little black dress should be in a style that flatters your body shape and size.

For me it is a simple cut dress that makes me look slim and georgeous after all black is slimming.  It's an every occasion dress that can be worn on its own or with simple accessories or jazzed up with bold statement jewellery depending on the occasion.  My classic little black dress these days during winter is a black long sleeved wrap dress, a simple, versatile and easy to wear dress which I love wearing with a pearl jewellery pendant. 

But who said the little black dress had to be all black?  This silk print dress may well become my next black number, a simple floaty dress with an even more stunning back view.   Will be georgeos accessorized with a pearl necklace or a simple rock crystal bracelet but is absolutely stunning on its own.

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

belted jackets

Winter is that time when you crave warming and comforting food to help fight off the chill and I do  look forward to the soups, stews and casseroles even though I have to make them myself.  When it comes to my winter wardrobe essentials warmth and comfort is just as important as I know I need my basics like roll neck tees, jumpers, cardigans, sweaters etc.  But must they all be in black, grey, brown and navy blue?  I think not.  So I have my eye on these two belted jackets.  Great accent colours with really architectural collars that are both stylish and trendy and the belt in the jacket really helps to accentuate your waist even if it is not as slim as it used to be.   So waist or no waist belted jackets can give the illusion of one.

I like my food to be invitingly colourful not to mention tasty and nutritious which usually means having a variety and wide range of foods.  Sometimes it is the little accents you add like sweet peppers, sweet corn, sprinkling of herbs and spices that can make all the difference.  So is your wardrobe well balanced? According to the old adage - variety is the spice of life - so do you have accents of colours in your winter wardrobe to brighten your winter?  Think about adding accent colours to your look with fashion accessories such as red woollen scarves and polkadot rings

ladies watches - a gift of the past?

I fear that ladies watches or watches in general may be becoming a gift of the past.  With the advent of mobile phones it seems that most people depend on their phones to tell them the time.  I still love watches though and see them as another fashion accessory to add to my outfit.  Mind you I do look for the statement watches that are both practical and unique. This white circle  bangle watch is a great example of a stylish ladies watch as it doubles as a stylish bangle while still being a time piece.  Gone is the era where you had only one watch but now it's trendy to have several watches to team up with your outfits.   Bracelet watches are also hugely popular.

Statement necklaces are no longer the only accessories on our wish lists, unique womens watches are delightful gifts for her when it comes to anniversaries, birthdays and valentines day.  Now that I think about it a red ladies watch would be a great valentines day gift. 

Thursday, 23 September 2010

cruise wear wardrobe

Summer shopping may be over for many of us as we have started layering up for the cold dark mornings in  preparation for the cold winter.  We can only hope that it is not as terrible as the last winter.  But if the old wives tales are anything to go by the saying is that if there are plenty of berries on the trees then it is going to be a bad winter.  Only time will tell, though there are an abundance of berries on the trees.  But for those of you planning a winter cruise holiday, winter can't come soon enough and shopping may only have just begun.  Great time to shop too as there are still some amazing online clearance bargains to be had like this ornate neck maxi dress.  You are sure to turn heads in this maxi dress with enough wiggle room for eating as much as you like. 

Selecting your cruisewear is all part of the excitement in the build up to your cruise holiday.  You look forward to dressing up for dinner every night and dream about all the food you are going to eat hmmm. The idea of a cruise always awakens memories of the Love Boat series with the heart breaking love stories where love always conquers in the end, the days out in Acapulco, dining with Captain Stubing.

Taking the time to plan your wardrobe ensures that you have what you need to strut your stuff on deck and more importantly that you are camera ready for the ship's photographer.  Ladies, remember you need both day wear and ladies evening wear. If you like dressing up for elegant evenings out then here is your opportunity to look like you just stepped off the catwalk and stand out from the crowd in your cruise wear.  Perhaps if you dress to impress you may end up at the Captains table - you never know.

Packing a few key and unique fashion accessories to complete your outfit or create different looks is all you need to ensure that you turn heads. 
chunky necklace
drop pearl earrings
evening bag or purse
stunning ring
leather belt
bandanas and headbands

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

christmas gifts – all wrapped up

I like getting a jump start on Christmas by buying presents throughout the year and storing in my gift closet. But I’m doing my usual winter clean – out storing summer clothes and hanging winter essentials and realize that my closet is bear – just a few gifts.

Pre-buying christmas gifts is always a good idea as it takes the hassle and rush out of christmas shopping and helps me to budget better. Panic buying in the run up to christmas is not my idea of fun and can prove to be very expensive. Some people say to me, “oh I can’t think so far ahead”. Me, once I’m out and about shopping and see an appropriate present for a loved one then I buy it especially if it is a good price and on sale.

I do stick to a few ground rules when buying presents in advance:.

- Always have the person in mind for whom you are buying the gift. That said, I do like to stick to christmas presents that are easily transferable i.e. suitable for more than one person like jewellery gifts, silk scarves, leather belts, handbags which are some gift ideas etc.

- Stay away from presents that will expire for example food stuffs, some cosmetics etc

- If you are taking the risk and getting clothes then make sure that it is at least your size so you can wear it in the event that it is unsuitable for the person. You know how we tend put on extra pounds in the winter with all the indulgence and luxury foods in the build up to Christmas.

- Latest fad clothing also a definite no no - stick to the classic fashion that never dates.

- One of my key rules is to buy presents for family and friends that I would use myself. Mind you, sometimes I do tend not to want to part with some gifts.

Shopping throughout the year for christmas presents really takes the pressure off gift buying during this festive season and you can spread the cost over a longer period and avoid escalating bills come Christmas. So next time you are out and about shopping or browsing the internet keep an eye out for unique quality gifts that would be perfect for your friends, family and loved ones.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Mirror Mirror on the wall – a winter must have

Talking about coordinating my clothes in winter reminded me that I am yet to get myself a standing mirror for my bedroom. I do have a full length mirror but downstairs.  So I  find myself having to bring several jackets downstairs to see which one looks best with my outfit and then match up shoes. Many a times I dress upstairs then come downstairs glance in the mirror and think how horribly wrong but when I'm running late its a toss up between facing more traffic or rushing  out of the house looking as if I dressed in the dark.

So a full length mirror is the first accessory on my winter must have list this year. This solid rubber wood leaning mirror from John Lewis has some unique features which really appeals. More than just a mirror it offers space for hanging clothes and somewhere to rest my shoes. Now I can really plan what I’m going to wear day to day and hang it out the night before on my mirror. There even space to lay out my fashion accessories like jewellery necklaces, leather belts and silk scarves all in advance. If I needed to convince myself further that this was the mirror for me then aesthetically the dark wood blends so well with my existing bedroom furniture. A winter must have indeed.

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Time to bring out the winter wardrobe

It is the end of another week of school but for me it was the official start of Autumn. Temperatures of 10 degrees yesterday morning was a gentle reminder for me that summer is officially over. My daughter complained that her hands and head were cold and I made a mental note to myself to put her gloves and hat in her bag from Monday.

It is time I’m afraid to get the suitcases out and pack away our summer clothes to make room for winter coats like this red wool coat , woolly cardigans, scarves, hats and gloves. With so much more to put on in the morning coordination is key as the wrong jacket or coat can really glamour up or glamour down a look. Let’s not forget as well how footwear can also make or break an outfit. No more strappy summer leather sandals or flip flops but practical ankle boots, knee high boots and warm platform shoes.  So lets' get those shoe boxes, and storage solutions out and start packing.

Friday, 17 September 2010

Anniversary gifts for her

I do look forward to my wedding anniversary every year with much anticipation. Each time I wonder, "what is he going to get me this year?" He usually manages to surprise me with some great gift ideas but I know that I would hate to be a man buying anniversary gifts for me, as I know I can be fussy and not very good at hiding my disappointment I'm afraid.

Why is it men find gift buying for valentines day, birthday etc so challenging? I don't know. Simply give the woman what she wants is what I say. But my guess is that gifts for her usually go wrong when shopping for it is left for the last minute like picking up a gift in the train station 10 minutes before your train.

I remember my teenage years spent working in department stores for Christmas and the fear and desperation on the face of some men as they hunt for the perfect gift for her on christmas eve.   Not good enough guys all I can say is thank god for returns and exchange policy and gift vouchers.
Here are some tips on getting the perfect gift for her:

-Don't panic buy. I know you men love gadgets and technology so start by putting reminders in your phone, desktops etc re these important gift buying occasions.

- Keep a record of what you have given your wife, partner, girlfriend in the past if you are in a long standing relationship

- Most importantly, remember what she did not like the last time.

- start thinking about gift ideas way in advance and shopping weeks before the event to avoid buying a ridiculously expensive, meaningless or inappropriate gift - like earrings when your loved ones ears are not pierced.

- luxury gifts are great but ensure that it suits her personality as this really shows that you have put some thought into it.

- think outside of the box and look for unique gifts. If you do go for jewellery find some unique and unusual womens jewellery gifts.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

retail therapy - a great back to school gift for mums

Kids are back to school and many mums, myself icluded, must be feeling so relieved.  Honestly I think I am now recovering from the sheer exhaustion of it all.   It's as if I have been Waiting To Exhale
and now I can finally breath.  At times like these I simply want to treat myself and what better way than a bit of retail therapy.  So as not to be frivilous I tell myself  "well I do need some new knitwear, woolly jumpers and cardigans for the pending autumn/winter.  Not to mention some roll neck tops and knee high boots, black preferably.

Shopping time is limited but I am bombarded with so many special offers via email that I simply cannot resist but take a look.  While there is so much I can think of that I need, I'm simply going to treat myself to this V neck sleeveless polkadot dress    This wrap dress is simple, elegant, timeless and polkadots are one of my alltime favorites. Team with this charm necklace for a great look.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

victoria beckham lastest collection for spring 2011

Sleek, silhouette, sophisticated, classic, wearable are just some of the words that come to mind  when describing victoria beckham's latest collection for spring 2011.  Whether you are a fan of Victoria Beckham or not, you have to admire her collection.  It is so wearable!!!!

Posh spice has obviously chosen to appeal to a select clientel the slim sophicated women who values timeless classic fashion that would simply never date her look.  Some might say that her collection is an extention of herself as you could see here wearing every piece from her spring collection.  Goosh even some of the models look like her.  But then these runway pieces hardly ever showcase plus size clothing on plus size models.

Some of the dresses do look like more of the same from her fall 2010 ready to wear collection but this season she has extended her collection to include a line of Victoria Beckham's handbags - well made and chic - a little on the big boxy side for me but then again you can carry everthing but the kitchen sink in there.  The shape of the bags are a gentle reminder of  a doctors bag from the olden days.  I must say that the circular tummy hugging feature in the strappy white cocktail dress does not appeal to me.  It just screams pregnancy garment and you must have an incredibly flat tummy to carry that dress off successfully.

If you are a classic dresser then I'm sure you would not mind having a few of these pieces in your wardrobe.   If Victoria keeps this classic sophistication trend going then she could become one of my favorite fashion designers right up there with the legendary Ralph Lauren.


Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Plus size womens clothes

There was a time when larger women had trouble finding glamourous fashion to celebrate their shape and curves.  Certainly not the case if you are shopping at La Redoute en plus or taillissime. Now I find myself wising that I was bigger to fit into some those georgeous plus size clothing.  This print knit stretch dress by Marianne James for example really grabs me.  I love the colours and the ecletic use of fabric reminds me a bit of Desigual style clothing which I simply adore.

This trendy hand emboidered dress will really show up your curves and enhance your cleavage.  The knee high boots offer practical warmth and style.  Available from sizes 12-28.  Such a unique dress calls for unique fashion accessories or even ethnic jewellery. .

Friday, 10 September 2010

Halter jumpsuits and the nude trend in classic movies

A friend posted a video clip from the movie The Way We Were starring Barbara Streistand and Robert Redford which flooded me with so much memories of how much I had loved that movie that I got myself a copy off amazon so I could  watch it over and over again.  That's the thing with classic movies, you are happy to watch them over and over again, like the sound of music and chitty chitty bang bang.  No doubt you have your favorites as well.

Last night I took in The Thomas Crown Affair  (1968) starring Faye Dunaway and found myself more engaged with the fashion than the story lines.  These classic movies are a great reminder of how fashion reinvents itself decade to decade  from the catwalk to the highstreet to our wardrobes. 

I loved Barbara Streistrand in her halter jumpsuit and Faye Dunnaway in her peachy nude ensemble and flamboyant hats - both trends which are with us now. While fashion can be fickle, if you stick to the timeless designs your cost per wear can  be maximized not to mention you will be building a capsule wardrobe that could be worn time and time again. 

That said, last week I wore a maxi dress that I've had over 10 years.  This tie dye maxi dress was a gift from my husband before we were married .......with such great taste how could I not marry him.  Apart from the fact that it still fits .....whoopee for me!!!!! ........ it's so timeless that I can reach for it summer after summer and still look current and fashionable.