Thursday

All things Aztec...


So the summer has come out? Anyone in London this week will agree; working in this weather is painful.  Not just because of the nightmare that is the tube in heat, but London is covered with rather impressive parks and there is nothing I would have rather done yesterday than sit outside in the sun with some Pimms all day.  Loving the longer days too - the boy and I went for a drink at a bar near us on Regents Canal this evening. For anyone local, I really recommend it - The Summerhouse on Blomfield Road.  Gorgeous - feels like you are on holiday!


Isabel Marant Renell pants

Having spent the weekend at Hyde Park with Lopez (and his BFF Tiber the poodle) I've been doing some aggressive summer style spotting.  And I'm after a 'look' - the aztec print.  When it first came out a couple of summers ago I really wasn't taken with the whole poncho thing, but now there are some really cool prints around on skirts, tops and shorts.  

Blake Lively in Marchesa


I guess it's the whole boho-chic thing, but everyone I spotted wearing aztec pieces looked very chilled out and care free.  I would quite like to be that person...  Here are my favourite pieces from the high street:

Zara Sequinned Aztec Print Skirts - left £29.99 and right £79.99



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Tuesday

The Essential: Leather Biker Jacket


This is a fairly new addition for me, as it was only recently that I twigged quite how much wear you can get out of a trusty leather biker.  I have just bought myself one, from Maje (fabulous Parisian brand that I could happily live in forever) in the Net A Porter staff/friends sale (which was amazing, btw). 


You really can wear it with anything - pretty little dresses right through to the classic white tee, skinny jeans and sunglasses.  It's the kind of purchase that you feel cool in - like when you get your first pair of school shoes not from Clarks (British kids will relate to this, I'm hoping).  Here are some style shots of people in their leather gear:



and I'll take any excuse for a little bit of Miranda Kerr outfit lusting... Love her jacket, anyone know where it is from? Love the checked leather (someone with design experience can probably give me the correct term for this) look too...


Miranda shows two very different ways to wear the same jacket - she wears it with two very different essential pieces, the maxi skirt and the breton tee...





I love that you can really change a look with a leather jacket - you can go from fairy princess to rock chick - and love wearing mine with a hat and maxi skirts - looks very cool, at least in my book!

Where to buy your leather jacket:
Maje - As I said before, this Parisian brand do amazing jackets - and the leather feels as soft as silk. Not cheap, but then why would you want it to be - this piece will last you for life.
Whistles - Very impressed by this wonderful British brand's leather pieces.  They have five in their current collection and they are all very, very nice. Starting from £295.00 - worth every damn penny. Click on the link to view.
Zara - Ye Old Faithful, Zara have some goodies too. Apparently their 'leather guy' in their design team is ex Diesel (who won tonnes of awards for their jackets). Good news for us!
Topshop - just because there is a little steal for anyone looking for a quick leather-look fix.  For £55 you can buy this amazing little leather-look jacket.

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Monday

J Crew Emerald Maxi Skirt

I live in a cruel world known better to some as the United Kingdom.  A world where J Crew is just a limited collection that flies off the virtual shelves of Net A Porter quicker than you can say 'I want it.'  I wish they would open a flipping store here - life would be so much sweeter.  However' for the meantime I am just going to have to cope with dribbling over their look book.  I've picked out a few pieces, starting with this gorgeous, amazing, wonderful sheered green maxi skirt.


For J Crew, the price is pretty good at £123.75 (clearly an attempt at a direct $ changeover) and if you link on this clever link you can buy it straight away!  I love the way it has been styled in this picture with the breton tee, another essential piece in my book.  I have wanted a green maxi for ages now, having seen a few pictures on my pinterest account - so am really pleased a quality retailer has made such a good style.  


I am going to order this at the end of the week (when I have been paid, gosh I am on the breadline for the next 3 days!) and also need to track down a rope-style belt - does anyone have any ideas?!  Oooh, and here are the 'inspiration' pictures I found before tracking down the J Crew number...


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Thursday

Mary Katrantzou Floral Pants


I have been frothing at the mouth over Mary Katrantzou's floral suit/trouser set ever since her show - not pleasant for the poor person who is sitting next to me in the office... But the idea is so simple that it is no surprise my high street favourites have created pieces which are OH so similar... I bought the Primark ones (yes Kids, I braved Primark - I lived to tell the tale too) but having seen the below ones by H&M Trend (which I spotted on il etait une fois this week) I'm now wishing I bought those ones... Take your pick!


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Wednesday

Accessorize's Coloured Clutches

Ever since I clapped eyes on Celine's gorgeous brightly coloured clutch bags, I've been on an eternal hunt for a similar model.  The price tag for what would seem a fairly simple concept is phenomenal - and even ones on the high street (cough... American Apparel... cough) are charging insane amounts for their versions.  Incase my description doesn't immediately remind you of what I am talking about, have a look here for some mental inspiration:



I was delighted to find a style that is very, very reasonably priced over at Accessorize at the weekend.  This style (below) is £12.00, and unfortunately what doesn't stand out from the picture is the fab quality of the bag.  The suede tassel is removable and at such a low price I am tempted to attempt a couple of DIY projects with them (studded, neons, dip dye etc).  They come in a big variety of colours (including a red just like the one above - my fave is the aqua!) - such a bargain, and you can buy yours here.


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Matija


The idea of moving Down Under is becoming increasingly appealing.  More and more of my friends are moving back home, or have decided that a life with more sun, more beer and more beaches is better than London.  Being a born and bred Londoner, I struggled with this theory for some time.  However, over the last few months I have become addicted to Australian fashion names - and spotted this brand Matija on one of my favourite blogs il etait une fois (who actually styled the shoot photos, woo!).


I know this blog is supposed to focus on British style, but Australia is part of the Commonwealth and we have the same Queen so it counts, right?!  Aussie clothes are so 'quietly cool' I love the easy, breezy look of all of these outfits - effortless style.  Obviously we Brits would have to lap on some tan in order to look anything like these models, but the weather this week has really brought out my inner Spring-bunny! The aqua coloured dress above is perfect summer evening wear, and the floral print in the dress, skirt and shorts below are gorgeous.  


The bright coloured dresses below are gorgeous too... Matija has some great all round pieces too - you can check them out through their Facebook page here.  They maybe be small now, but I doubt they will be for very much longer.  I wish they would set up over here in the UK - pretty please?!


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Tuesday

The Essential: White Shirt

This may seem incredibly simple, but I've found a lot of people don't own one of the most useful pieces possible for a good classic outfit: a plain, well fitted white shirt.  Many seem to veer away from them in fear of looking like an office worker - or avoid them for anything but the office.  However, they really are a great item to have, and they can be worn in so many different ways.

put it under a blazer (top left) pair up with your jeans (top right) or add some bows like Olivia Palermo and Blair Waldorf (below)


Whether it's to harden-up a soft skirt, do the androgynous look, do the school-girl look - or just to dress the part for a big meeting (amazing how a good collar can instantly give you authority).  Use it as a base for pairing it up with some statement jewellery, or with a big printed maxi skirt - so versatile you can do whatever you want with it.  Love them with leather too - I want a leather jacket to wear mine with.  Button up for a gothic look, or button down for relaxed and casual (like below)...


I know it's horrible to wear your 'work' clothes for anything but the office - but hopefully these pictures will give you some inspiration.  For me, there is no better look than a good pair of jeans, black blazer and a crisp white shirt (sun tan from the South of France preferred, but optional).



You can use them as a canvas to add accessory detail like the oversize jewellery above, or the cute silk scarf below.  As they cover enough of your top half, they're also perfect to matching up with shorter skirts as the old rule 'boobs or legs' is totally covered...  Or buy one two sizes big and wear as your boyfriend's shirt.. Or nab your boyfriend's - whichever is most realistic!


all via pinterest


Where to buy your white shirt

Now firstly, don't faint at the prices because this is an essential piece that you will wear for years.  And has a hint, even if you want to wear it open always make sure you can button it to the very top as otherwise it will look too small for you.

Alexander Wang - Best designer around for this kind of stuff. Best selection is available on netaporter.
Sandro - Get used to this brand as I'll be harping on about it forever, their tailoring is second to none
Charles Tyrwhitt - If you are after a very simple, classic shirt then this company (owned by the husband of the The White Company owner)
Zara - this old chestnut never fails, I have a few from here and they are superb
COS - If you are looking for an edgier piece, COS is perfect


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