Adventures in personal style.



Template by Elle @ satellit-e.bs.com
Images: own work
Others: colour codes

January 2011 February 2011 March 2011 April 2011 June 2011 July 2011 September 2011

Some Recent Online Purchases
Wednesday, 23 February 2011 / 14:33

I went on a bit of a shopping spree (by my standards) over the last couple of days, but I think I did a reasonable job of focusing on things I had practical needs for - I resisted hair accessories, for once. :) Shopping in town has been more frustrating than enjoyable lately - insert predictable complaints about crowds, noise, etc. here - but I am usually too stingy to pay shipping costs for anything I could buy in person, so when a few free shipping opportunities cropped up, I jumped at the chance.
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A Little Note
Sunday, 20 February 2011 / 09:41

I'll be on semi-hiatus for the next two weeks because I've been called for an in-person portfolio review at one of the art colleges I applied to, which means a hectic scramble to get my portfolio up to scratch. I'm thrilled about it because it means I'm one step closer to my goal of getting onto a degree course, but there's heavy competition for places and I need to be at the absolute top of my game.

I'll try to finish a couple of posts before disappearing, and I've been toying with the idea of starting another blog solely for artwork/sketches, so that might happen once I've done all the portfolio stuff.

I shall leave you with this: here's what I would like to be wearing if I wasn't freezing all the time.

Primary Colours 1

In real life, I'm living in multiple layers... thermal plus sweater plus cardigan, tights under jeans... but there's no reason why I can't break out the few brightly-coloured things I own. I've got a red floral dress I could wear layered...

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Friday Linkspam
Friday, 18 February 2011 / 20:10

 Yet another bow headband from Internacionale, marked down to £2. The obsession continues.

An amazingly kind US friend made my week by sending me two more pairs of Aerie pyjama trousers! They are so comfortable, and I love the plaids. We've agreed to go to AE together next time I get to go and visit her in the States. Incidentally, AE are currently offering 20% off + free US shipping all weekend. I won't be taking advantage of this promotion but I had fun with a little fantasy shopping spree this morning. Topshop are also offering free UK shipping, but I'll probably sit that one out too.

Anyway, assorted links I've bookmarked over the past week:

Some picks from the Vogue Covers Archive at Tilly and the Buttons. The August 1957 one is my favourite, because the model reminds me of Audrey Hepburn:
The Me-Made-March challenge at So, Zo - an interesting blog challenge for people who make and/or refashion clothes. I won't be signing up, but maybe this'll spur me on to tackle some of the sewing projects I've planned?

Anjali of Goldenmeans and Tara B. of Little Girl Big Closet collaborated on how to create a working closet, a post full of fantastic advice. I immediately divided my wishlist into "wants" and "needs" and that alone proved useful.

Some Mori Girl inspiration: Aoi Yu in Jille magazine at Mori Girl, and ideas for tropical Mori Girl looks at Fern & Fawn.

An interview with writer Alice Carey at Advanced Style.

Sleeves and Proportion: Inspiration from Vintage and Modern Fashion at With a Modern Twist.

An awesome eBay-focused thrifting guide and follow-up by Nudemuse.

Orange for Everybody at Fashion for Giants. I'm wedded to my cool, dark colours and normally don't even think about wearing orange, but this thorough, inclusive guide has opened up possibilities.


Saturday, 12 February 2011 / 12:26

 Both Elle and Lady Cardigan tagged me for the Stylish Blogger Award - thank you both very much! I feel bound to mention that your Stylish Blogger is not looking particularly stylish at this present moment - sitting on the floor rocking homemade pyjamas and the aforementioned men's hiking fleece - but moving swiftly on, here are the terms of the award.

1. Thank and link back to the person who awarded you this award
2. Share 7 things about yourself
3. Award 15 recently discovered bloggers
4. Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award

I'm afraid I have been lax with my blog-reading lately and had a hard time thinking of 15 recently discovered bloggers who hadn't already been tagged by someone else, so here are six:

Gabrielle of Fern & Fawn
Petite Chic[k] of Apparel Addiction
Cee of To Brighten My Day
Violet of Calendars and Pens
Michelle of The Petite Fitting Room 
Sara of Orchids in Buttonholes

Now, seven things about myself, probably in far too much detail. :P

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Quick Hit: Dress Love
Thursday, 10 February 2011 / 16:03

I was walking through John Lewis when I spotted this FWM by Fenn Wright Manson dress on a mannequin and I swear my jaw dropped a little.
The photo doesn't do it justice; in real life the green/silver jacquard is exquisite:
and it has the perfect late-50s/early-60s sort of shape (though I suppose it was probably pinned on the shop mannequin for a slimmer fit). It's £229 and doesn't come in my size anyway, but I'm just glad I got to look at it.

(One day I'll visit the V&A museum, where I can gawk at dresses to my heart's content without risking any odd looks from sales associates.)

More H&M Fitting Room Reviews
Tuesday, 8 February 2011 / 11:00

I keep going to H&M and coming back empty-handed; this is partly because I overthink almost every single purchase I make, and partly because I tend to have mixed experiences in the fitting rooms; the lighting can be seriously unflattering and the fit of the clothes is all over the place. Yesterday's trip wasn't that bad, though I ran out of time and didn't photograph everything.

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More Sunday Miscellany and Links
Sunday, 6 February 2011 / 15:28

I went charity-shop browsing yesterday, and found this adorable girl's dress:
There was no label of any kind, so it might have been handmade. Unfortunately it was too small for me, but it's inspired me to dream up similar dresses for summer.

This was a quiet week for me, and I didn't get as much done as I'd hoped, but after a few months of stress and health problems I think I needed to recharge mentally and physically. I made myself stay indoors on Thursday because I'd been coming back exhausted every time I went for a walk. I did make some progress on my wardrobe overhaul, figured out my clothing budget for the next couple of months, and crossed off another wishlist item: warm, thick tights for cold-weather wear. I got these ones from John Lewis' girls' range in charcoal grey, at £7.75 for a pack of two. They're totally opaque and very soft, so I'm pleased.

I planned to hit H&M today, but as it's raining and I don't feel like facing the Sunday afternoon crowds, I'm staying in. I've been reading Dynamic Anatomy (NB: affiliate link) by Burne Hogarth and copying some of the amazing illustrations - whilst that's no substitute for drawing from life, it's a good adjunct, I think. (Also, I'm a nerd and I just like learning what all the muscles are called, etc.)

Some links I've collected over the past week:

Beautiful indoor planters at Fern & Fawn. I used to keep mosses and little ferns in a couple of small containers, and I'm inspired to do something similar again.

Questions on feminism and fur, by L. at Academichic - another considered and thought-provoking post. The comments are well worth reading as well, as readers share varied and interesting perspectives.

Four ways to refresh your existing wardrobe, at the Daily Telegraph. I'm never sure what to think of trend-focused fashion media (who gets to decide what's "in", and why should I care?) but I can't deny being pleased to see pink, tweed and Uniqlo on the list. I think I'll pass on "the colours we are supposed to be wanting now", though - "... orange, cobalt, lime, emerald and fuchsia".

Style, authorship and stereotypes, by Andrea of A Cat of Impossible Colour, guest-posting at Already Pretty; a powerful and elegant rebuttal of the idea that women with an interest in clothes must be "shallow, vain, a bit dim or unpleasantly female in some way." In a similar vein, Nerd Girls Rule at Eat the Damn Cake. I just love this one.

Back in May last year, Sally of Already Pretty asked, what are your figure flattery priorities? I read this, thought "wait, I get to decide for myself what flatters me?", and it felt kind of liberating, honestly.

DIY Embellished Tees at Academichic - great tips and inspiration. E. just posted a great guide to refashioning clothes, too. I'll be referring to both these links as my stack of clothes to alter/embellish grows.

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Friday Rambling: Thermals
Friday, 4 February 2011 / 23:02

Okay, if you live somewhere where it's -20 C right now, you're probably going to laugh at this post... but whilst the Scottish climate is relatively mild, I'm one of those people who tends to feel cold a lot. Sure, it's a great excuse to drink more coffee and wear baggy sweaters all the time, but I could probably deal with this issue in a more stylish way, i.e. any way that doesn't involve the fleece I'm wearing right now (let's just say "hiking shop" and "men's size medium" and leave it at that).

Thermal layers are the obvious solution, but it's been surprisingly hard to find thermal tees that aren't just, well, underwear. My Aerie waffle crew is too tight and sheer to wear by itself, but I'd happily wear it under a button-down shirt with the cuffs, hem and neckline peeping out. I can't say the same about my Marks and Spencer thermal, which is good for warmth but not much else - it just doesn't look like it should be a visible part of an outfit, if that makes sense.

What I'm looking for is thermal tees with a waffle-knit texture, not too sheer or too tight. I've found plenty of them online... on sites that either don't ship to the UK, or charge an exorbitant amount to do so. I thought I was on to something when I got the Fab Knit Thermal from Forever 21, so I tried to order it in two more colours, but was thwarted by problems with the website. I've also noticed some slight pilling on the shirt after just one wash, so ordering multiples might not be the best investment...

Of course, I could just get some non-thermal long-sleeved tees for layering and leave it at that. H&M's long-sleeved kids' tees are cheaper than the F21 thermals (£4.99 vs £6.50 plus shipping) and the quality is probably better, so I might just go with those. Oh, and if this Topshop pyjama set ever goes on sale, I'll be doing my best to snap it up.

If you live somewhere truly cold, I hope you're staying warm today... you're probably better at it than I am. :P I'm still working on my AE post, plus some sketches based on the new Uniqlo +J collection, and being far too perfectionist about both... I've got to kick that habit.

Lastly, I'm not really a shoe person, but I was walking through John Lewis when I spotted these and my eyes widened a little:
 Unfortunately, I think the sale price is £59, and I probably couldn't walk in 4.3" heels anyway... but aren't they pretty?


Wardrobe Organisation, Part One
Tuesday, 1 February 2011 / 18:14

When it comes to dressing well, one of my biggest problems is disorganisation. I could go into far too much detail on this subject, but let's just say I struggle with organisation in just about every area of my life. Regardless, I'm trying hard to get my clothing organised because I know it will be crucial to dressing (and shopping) better.

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