M&S Limited London collection

27 Jun

Have you spotted the new Limited London collection at good old high-street faithful M&S? It’s part of the Limited Edition range, which I’ve been a fan of for a while, because it’s a slightly more youthful, fashion forward selection.

Limited London is made from recycled fabrics and inspired by the fashionable folk of London. And it’s definitely caught my eye. Take a look…

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Nice, huh? And there’s a special offer on at the moment, so pieces start at £7.60, and there’s nothing more expensive than £55.20. Good old M&S!

Bethan x

The sales are everywhere!

20 Jun

It’s that time again: the high street’s gone sales mad. I can’t walk down a single street near my office without being confronted by those temptingly massive SALE signs. So it’s been pretty hard to resist temptation. And, of course, I haven’t!

There was lots of excitement, as always, surrounding the Zara sale, which kicked off on Thursday. I went along and tried a few things on, but I don’t think the Zara sale really gives you massive bargains. They tend to start off only reducing items by about £10. However I’ve got my eye on a couple of things that I’m hoping might be reduced further…

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Now £29.99, Zara

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£29.99, Zara

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£29.99, Zara

Another favourite sale of mine is Whistles, mostly because I can’t justify paying full price for that stuff! Here’s what I’ve been eyeing up…

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£55, Whistles

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£65, Whistles

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Cashmere! £65, Whistles

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£80, Whistles

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£70, Whistles

The same goes for Reiss – usually too expensive, so it’s all go when the sale comes! I’m coveting this dress…

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£95, Reiss

And I always love a new shoe or two from Clarks…

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£35, Clarks

But what I’m really waiting for is the Orla Kiely collection to be in the sale. I love these, but they’re still full price…

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Clarks, £110

And as for what I did buy? Well, I’ve had another naughty little designer shoe splurge. Meet my new Marni sandals…

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Half price, still credit-card-only expensive! But I own something from Marni! And they’re beautiful.

The sales are one of those times when some of the designer things you could normally only dream of seem to be within reach. There’ll be no more big purchases from me for a while now, but if I could go made in the sales, I’d get these…

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£181, Equipment

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£262.50, Miu Miu

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£189, Bella Freud

That’s quite a wishlist! What’s on yours?

Bethan x

Ancient Greek Sandals (and some affordable high-street versions)

14 Jun

Summer is finally – sort of – here in London. We’ve had a few days of good sunshine (although it’s disappeared again this weekend, but it looks set to be back this week). And, it’s only two weeks till I’m off on holiday. All of which adds up to one thing: it’s officially sandals season!

I’ve been enjoying wearing my Penelope Chilvers sample sale snakeskin sandals…

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And I have a couple of pairs of heeled sandals in my collection, but no other flats. I’ve been coveting the amazing style made by Ancient Greek Sandals. Feast your eyes on a selection (I love the winged styles SO much)…

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But with prices starting at about £120 for the leather sandals (£70 for the blue jellies), they’re not exactly an impulse buy. So I thought I’d see if I could find anything similar for a high-street budget. I think it’s all about finding a simple style, in a neutral colour, with a bit of glitter or beading to add a dash of fun. Here’s what I’ve found…

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£28, River Island at Asos

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£25, Asos

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£20, Asos

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£29.99, H&M

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£35, Office

In summary – there are loads of these styles out there, so you won’t have to search high and low. I think I like the third pair best, and with the £100 I save myself, hmm, perhaps I should go shopping for more bargains!

Bethan x

Hooray for high-waisted!

6 Jun

Remember those dark days, back in the early Noughties, when the only style of jeans it was acceptable to wear was an ultra low-waist bootcut? No? Check out these pics of Carmen Electra and Paris Hilton as a quick reminder…

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Oh yes, you remember now, don’t you! No tops were long enough to meet these super low riders, so you were always flashing a slice of midriff (though that was actually the point!), and when you sat down, everyone either got a glimpse of your builders bum (or your underwear – depending on what style you favoured!)

We didn’t question it at the time, and we all thought the idea of a high waist, or anything that wasn’t bootcut, was deeply uncool.

How glad I am that times have changed. These days, pretty much any style of jean or trouser goes. We like flares as much as skinnies, and high waists are firmly back on the map – and they’re the subject of this post.

I’ve been trying a few high-waisted options recently, and I’m getting quite into them. There is, of course, the DVF trousers I’ve mentioned several times, which sit very high up…

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And yesterday I treated myself to these denim culottes from Zara…

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£29.99, Zara.

I’m also currently watching a pair of MiH Berlin jeans on eBay. I had a google of the style earlier and found this picture of Jessica Alba wearing them…

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Seriously cool and flattering, right? They’re an old style, so they’re sold out everywhere, but such is the wonder of eBay that they can still be tracked down. The bidding war begins…

As for what to wear with these high-waisted numbers, I find my wardrobe in need of a new category of tops: tight ones. High waists need tops tucked in, and the flowy blouses I favour don’t look quite right. I bought one of these Zara vests yesterday…

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£7.99, Zara

Which was a brave move for me, as I never do sleeveless! And I’m thinking it might be time to go totally retro and invest in a couple of bodysuits. That way, I’ll get a totally smooth outline under my high waists. It’s been tricky to find nice ones – my faithful Asos has a slightly crazy selection full of cut-outs and plunging necklines – but I think Boohoo has a good range, and all for about £10, which is a bargain. I’ll think I’ll buy a size up for the sake of comfort!

Bethan x

Are they really bargains?

31 May

I always seem to be buying things in sales or on eBay, so I thought it’d be interesting to figure out exactly how much of my wardrobe I actually paid full price for.

I was quite surprised – after doing a little inventory, I discovered that over half of my wardrobe is filled with stuff I paid full price for – so perhaps I’m not as much of a bargain hunter as I’d thought? In addition to this, about a third of my things are sale purchases, with only a small percentage from eBay or jumble sales.

So what have I learnt from this?

1. I think perhaps the reason I don’t have as many sale or eBay things is because I don’t keep them as long as full-price stuff. They tend to be impulse buys, or things I haven’t be able to try on, so it makes sense that perhaps I don’t treasure them as much as the things I’ve spent serious cash on, tried on to ensure they fit perfectly, and actually fallen in love with, like my leather jacket, Whistles cashmere jumper dress and Zara silk blouse…

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2. But, saying that, I’ve noticed that thesale items I’ve got the most use of fall into three categories: great knitwear (including cashmere I couldn’t otherwise afford), shoes and jeans…

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Aka staple pieces that are really useful (and no less exciting – I’m still very excited about my Charlotte Olympia kitties!)

So I’ve decided that my shopping strategy needs to change. No more impulse buying of pretty dresses and tops in the sales or on eBay, as chances are I won’t keep them. Buy staples in sales, then save up for full-price pieces I know I’ll keep. It’s so much more satisfying looking at things I’ve had for years and knowing I’ll have them for years to come.

(But obviously it’s OK to keep buying bargain sale shoes, though, right?!)

Bethan x

I’ve gone gaga for ghillies

26 May

If you’re a fan of fashion, you’ll no doubt have noticed that ghillie shoes – aka those that lace up across the foot – have been everywhere. When I first spotted this trend emerging, it was on the many much-photographed street-style stars, and these beautiful shoes were only available from super high-end designers like Aquazzura. Olivia Palermo’s a big fan…

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I looked and looked for high-street copies, but it was a little slow to catch on. Now, though, they’re everywhere, from skyscraper sandals like Olivia’s to gorgeous pointed flats. So I’ve finally been able to get on board.

The first pair I’ve bought are these blue flats from Asos…

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£28, Asos

Pretty, right? And they’ll go brilliant with the rest of my wardrobe, as so much of it is blue!

On a less practical front, I found I couldn’t resist these sandals from Marks & Spencer…

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£35, M&S. They might be the least comfortable thing I’ve ever put on my feet, but I just think they’re so pretty. They’re due to arrive on Thursday, so stay tuned for the verdict!

Have you been seduced by ghillies?

Bethan x

It’s about time I had some Russell & Bromley shoes

16 May

My new workplace is slap bang in the middle of some amazing shopping streets, so I’m tempted by beautiful things on a daily basis.

One of those beautiful things is the Russell & Bromley shop window. I’ve always been aware of the brand, known it’s amazing quality, and seen it on countless celebs. Kate Middleton, Alexa Chung and Millie Mackintosh are among R&B’s fans…

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But I’ve always thought it was a touch too expensive. Don’t get me wrong, these shoes are right at the top end of the high-street budget, but I’m starting to think that the amazing quality and the beautiful designs might justify the price.

Payday’s still a few days away, but if I do decide to take the plunge, here are my frontrunners…

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Anyone got a favourite?

Bethan x

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