Monday, June 29, 2015

Comfort or pizazz?

In my eyes there’s only two shoes that can go head to head this summer. In the red corner we’ve got the sandal, the shoe that waits a whole year to make a comeback that everyones been waiting for. The shoe that’s got so many variations you can tie it, strap it or slide it. 

Ready to kick in the blue corner we’ve got the sensible shoe, the shoe that everyone has a pair of even if they’re a bit battered or only come out for an airing when the DIY is in full swing. It’s the trust worthy trainer, now a major part in modern fashion all year round. 

Personally I find it impossible to choose my favourite of the two, my sandal collection is getting out of control and the trainer collection is slowly progressing. You’d think the weather would help you to decide and discard the shoe you could wear for the day, but no, even if summer decides to break out in spits of rain we still insist on wearing a sandal. It’s the same with a trainer, even if Britain becomes unusually baking hot we still conclude on wearing a trainer. There’s nothing that won’t chance our mind. 
This week I’ve managed to add another pair of shoes to each of these contenders. A trip to Liverpool lead to a wander around Sports Direct, then before I knew it I was on the way back to my student flat with a shoebox filled with beautiful sports chic Adidas trainers. Not only are these shoes perfect for my work uniform (being able to wear nothing but black) but they’re so cushioned I could have literally jumped over the Liver building when I tried these on. Full of bounce and beauty at only £32, these trainers are now my favourite, that’s until I buy another pair…
A trip to Chester to meet my flat mate surprised me with a huge sale from Zara. It’s a known and proven fact by now that I simply can’t go into Zara without buying anything, so when it comes to the time when my bank account is running low I literally have to deprive myself from Zara, and that proves one of the hardest tasks when there’s the greatest invention ever called internet shopping. This might come as a shock to you but this is my first pair of shoes I’ve bought from Zara, and at only £13 are now my favourite sandal. Not only are they bang on trend and good quality, but when I wore them I was thrown compliments at left right and centre from absolute strangers in the shops. These little black sandals had made my day! 

The battle between the kick boxing trainer and the cool and collected sandal isn't over, and I doubt will be for some time. It's a battle of comfort and pizazz, and if you're like me and have no clue which you prefer, then let's call it a draw. 

Friday, June 26, 2015

Holiday Haul

Even a trip over the seas can't stop a girl when it comes to shopping. Yes there's sights to see, weird food to eat and crazy things to do but shopping always has a part to play. Whether it's for clothes that are cheaper to buy than at home or some memorabilia from the holiday, shopping is a traditional activity in everyone's holiday.

I bought several suveniers for myself and family from Barcelona like bookmarks, calendars and pottery. Recently I've re-decorated my whole room so pieces to display were a must from me as well as the oh so touristy keyring which now hangs proudly on my house keys. 

If you're a prominent reader of my blog you'll know that Mango and Zara are my favourite shops. Not only do they sell beautiful and top quality clothing, but the tailored simple styles are something I'm comfortable wearing and have shaped my fashion sense. Thanks to this, half of my wardrobe has become Zara and Mango based, something I'm proud and smug about, but also a little worried and guilty about for my purse. 

Being in Barcelona (the home/ birth place of Mango) it would be rude not to have a look at the many Mango's they have there. Not only are they huge inside but they include mens and kids clothing, something you just can't get back in England. I managed to hunt down the perfect shirt dress in a navy colour. Not only is it great for summer but will look just as flattering in the colder months with a pair of tights. With a neat little brown belt which ties simply around the waist, it finishes off the shirt dress perfectly. 

Zara proved much cheaper over in Barcelona than back at home so I made the most of the trip and bought 3 different pieces. Some would say I might have gone overboard but managing to get a summer coat and two tops for 60 Euro's comes in at only around £40. Going absolutely crazy in Zara wasn't the plan, but seeing as the clothes were something a little different than what they'd have over in England, it was fate. Upon entering, a black draping waterfall like summer coat was staring right at me, so obviously I picked it up not to be rude. My favourite part about this coat is the drawstring back that gives it a cool and edgy look from a normal duster coat. Amongst this, even though I was in Barcelona I let out my inner French chic and bought another stripe T to add to my growing collection, as well as a floaty V neck navy summer top. Not only are these essential for my summer wardrobe but every time I wear them it reminds me of Barca. I don't know whether to laugh or cry about that.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Pancake post

There's nothing better in the morning than a wake up call to a plate full of delicious pancakes. Piled up with maple syrup, sugar, fruit, however you want to accessorise your pancake make sure you make them worth your while.

The recipe I followed was from BBC Good Food website which provided simple steps to a successful pancake. With an attempt of numerous off angle flips, and a few burnt pancakes I can only describe as being like scrambled egg when I eventually scrapped it off the frying pan, the ones who'd made it through looked good enough to eat funnily enough. For 2 pancakes I tried frying strawberries in the mixture which proved one of the best moves I've taken, that I felt a part of Heston Blumenthal had just taken over my brain. The texture of soft fruit matched the pancakes mix and the juice of the strawberries seeped into the pancakes giving them a hint of a strawberry flavour throughout which instantly made the pancakes and the strawberries much more enjoyable. Add a couple covered in caster sugar and you've got a breakfast fit for a king, or simply someone who's obsessed with pancakes.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Slap on the sun-cream, sun-hat and sunglasses

 Day Uno- Lunes

How much money and time do we actually spend on our summer wardrobe? I know I didn't spend too much money, but making time to plan the outfits effectively to summer trends and predictive weather reports for Barcelona took a few evenings staring at the mountain of clothes in my wardrobe to prepare. First day is always the trickiest however, especially when going to a country that you could practically fry an egg on the pavement from a country still giving wintery chills. It proves a hard task to decide what to wear. In the end culottes seemed the best option, along with a smart and tailored waistcoat. Not only was the shape bang on trend and the colour scheme of monochrome something I felt fit into my style more, but the longer layers made it more appropriate for both climates. 

 Day Dos- Martes

I'm usually one for plain, simple none fuss clothing, but these two items were too irresistible for me to buy. Yes, two completely separate prints, but somehow through the colours work together to create a bubbly and i'll admit flowery outfit for my holiday. Perfect for the Barcelona waves later in the day, but walking around the tourist attractions I felt I needed something to cover myself a little more. The best option was a short sleeved blanket cape to sling over my back whenever the Barcelona breeze hit in. Position a pair of cat eye sunnies gracefully on your summer hairstyle and hey presto, the perfect holiday attire.

 Day tres- MiĆ©rcoles

My previous blog posts have raved over the fact I'd finally got my hands on something suede (a major trend for S/S 2015), and of course I couldn't leave it hanging at home, it was coming with me to Barcelona! You might think suede is a little heavy and warm to wear in the hot weather (and to an extent you're right if you're doing a lot of walking that day prepare for a little sweating), but surprisingly whilst sitting for tapas and enjoying the Guadi art it was fine and by the evening one of the best choices as the nights breeze entered the air. One of the best accessories to accompany the plain camel coloured dress was a wide brimmed black fedora hat which proved a blessing keeping the sunburn from getting worse on my head. Just a little bucket of advice for you-make sure you hold your hat down whilst the wind sets in, unlike me; which resulted in a gasp, sprint and sigh of relief after I'd managed to chase after it.

Day cuatro- Jueves

One of my favourite outfits was saved for the last day. With a bargain pair of culotte daisy shorts bought months previous, it was finally time for them to shine (and quite literally in the Barcelona sun). With a smart and simple tailored V neck black shirt, it let the shorts do the talking. Not only are these shorts super cool, their super flattering too making my legs reach Alexa Chung standard on the thinnest and longest legs scale. If only I could wear these shorts in England, but there's just some extents I won't go to despite these being one of my favourite pair of shorts. Bring on the 20 degrees then you have my word. 

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Barcelona blues.

Holiday season has approached and before I could say the word Barcelona I was on the plane flying over the sunny blue skies of Spain that I so rarely see in England. With Spanish tiles left right and centre and apartments accompanied by balconys stretching into the sky I felt as though I'd traveled into a completely different world. And I loved it. With a chorus of motor scooters and the heat so hot I could finally get my legs out for my summer wardrobe, Barcelona was the place I longed to be.

In 5 days I soaked up my inner Spanish SeƱorita and ordered tapas with my friends, spent the afternoons on the beach sipping cocktails and rushed onto the metros. Being an arty person I was already interested in any quirky architecture, but seeing Gaudi's work in Spain really opened my eyes into an alien style I'd never seen before with shapes and colours I thought never existed. Restaurants, beach's, parks and fountains were all part of the holiday list along with many more places I got to see. By the time I'd let out my inner tourist it was time to go, and let me tell you there's nothing more depressing than flying from a country covered in blue to a country surrounded by grey. I think it's safe to say I've got the Barcelona blues, I'll need a week to recover that the holiday is over and being back at work and reality. 

Saturday, June 13, 2015

My new best friend.

Women are often stereotyped into the obsessive hoarders of shoes and bags, and I can probably say that stereotype is 99.9% true and found myself buying yet another bag to add to my growing, and in some cases battered, collection. For you see, a girl can never have too many bags and even the clutch that seemed to have had better night and even worse morning after than I did, with straps and buckels on the loose, there's something that can't make me part with these bags.Yes it's completely broke, but throwing a bag into the bin, even for a women with no emotional connection to the bag proves a tough ask.

A perfect reason and sometimes (often) excuse to buy a new and expensive handbag is for the "hand luggage" for the airport. Okay, I have bags that could fit the criteria perfectly to accompany me to the airport and take on an adventure abroad, but surly I could make a new friend and bond with a new bag.

BHS proved the odd surprise when I found a perfect bag, not only for the trusty hand luggage but probably for my next year at university. A bold, white and structured bag was something that I was determined to set my eyes upon and BHS allowed me to do just that. Monochrome is a trend I've liked and felt comfortable in for my tailored and minimal style so this bag proved great for me. Not only does it come with secret pockets for our typical womanly junk like the odd tissue and worn out comb, but is big enough to hold my laptop and work files. With a sturdy strap and a washable material this bad is my new best friend. That is until I replace it and find another one to add to the collection, and at only £14.00 for my newest member it surly is a bargain!