Tuesday, 4 February 2014

'I put a spell on you...'

Valentine's Day is a sartorial minefield. Do you dress for the boy or for yourself? Do you go for something sexy and possibly uncomfortable or do you stick to comfortable and possibly drowning layers?

This Missguided dress is my number one pick- I think it may have already entered my shopping basket, oooops! I like the sheer panels; they're in a place that won't emphasis the rolls of fat I'm so often carrying, and add a bit of va va voom without showcasing any unwelcome bits of skin. I also really like a low back on a dress, I think this one does it well. It can be classy paired with heels and a biker jacket, then whatever other accessories you wanna throw at it. 

At heart I am a trousers and strappy top kinda girl, I can't help it. An alternative to the dreaded dress is a lacy cami (not from the pj section) and a pair of (p)leather trousers. Sharp and sexy.

A third option, a kind of combination of the feminine dress and masculine trouser is a tuxedo dress. I love it paired with a lace crop top underneath. I got mine from River Island, but I think it's now gone. This one from Warehouse is a great alternative, and only £15. 

A part of me hate's Valentine's Day for it's overpriced cards and incentive to buy yet more presents, and for the way it isolates singles. But it is a good excuse to dress up, which I always love!

Saturday, 1 February 2014

'Because I'm happy...'

For a few years now I've been obsessed with classy style. You would probably have gathered by now that Olivia Palermo's my number one style icon, I love everything about her. 

But recently I've been getting into people with slightly edgier style; SunbeamsJess, Lexi, Fashion Influx. I think I might just have fashion schizophrenia. But I adore them; they never look too done, despite looking chic and just simply amazing. They pair great combos together; I'm now longing for a gold headpiece to wear under my hats and this rose gold hand chain from Etsy. They're experimental and wear items that in my younger days I would have thought ugly, but they just look so goddamn good

And I'm copying them. I recently bought a long tuxedo dress which my boyfriend wholeheartedly tried to convince me was a jacket. I'm wearing Converse on a near daily basis.Yesterday I wore bright blue all-stars, leather trousers, a white jumper with see through panels and a mint coat. To training session, I kid you not. What has become of me?

Yes, I have found myself in the library looking like my wardrobe just vomited on me. I've looked down and thought Michaela, what on earth are you wearing. A day with the books does not mean a day of wild abandon on the clothing front. Maybe it's hitting 20 and realizing that I'm actually supposed to be grown up now. But I've decided to leave the classy, chic and polished style to my late twenties (just typed teens there, I am surely in denial), when I have an office to go to and need to look properly put together. But for now, I'm riding the experimental train. If you see a girl in your lectures dressed in a somewhat superhero-ish cape and white jeans, it's probably me.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

'Nothing but blue skies do I see...'

Up until the past few winters I had never been one for black clothing; in my childish fancy I found it too boring, too safe, too monochrome. But in recent chilly spells I've been loving nothing more than a one tone dark outfit, possibly with a bright coat or shoe thrown in. In black now I feel chic and put together and like I've always spent 2 hours getting ready when really I woke up for my 9 o'clock lecture at half 8. 

However there is a lot to say for the colour on the other end of the spectrum: white. It's a colour that in winter I most definitely shy away from; but when I think about it, this is the perfect time of year to try it out. Especially for a pale person like me: in white shorts or a white t in summer I tend to look like a ghost rather than chilled boho chick, but the whole point of winter clothing is to cover everything up. Score. White jeans, white fluffy jumpers, pale hued bags, it's all up for grabs. When I first think of white jeans I do conjure up an image of Elizabeth Hurley circa early 2000s in my head; but no fear, white can be done in a classy way. (Pictures, Pinterest)

I think the rules are:
1) Stick to neutral tones to pair with your whites (black, camel, grey).
2) Stick to classic shapes. 
3) Layer layer layer for a combination of textures and shades. 
4) Top with sunglasses to 

Sunday, 26 January 2014

'I've been saved by a woman...'

There are many things I love in life. Chocolate. Gossip Girl. Doctor Who. Game of Thrones. Clothes. Bags. Shoes. Airports. New York. Makeup. Skincare. Shopping. But there's one thing I love more than most- books. 

I love reading, I love writing, I love going to the library, I love going to book stalls, I love going to WH Smiths. I even have an unread book pile of about 7 going on on my bedside table. 

My English Literature degree has enabled me to read greatly in the canon, yes. But it generally lacks the kind of fiction I like to read, and so I do a lot of outside research on top of it. Some people may think I'm crazy, yes. But I just love it. 

Books I've been loving recently:

Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Susann

This book is a rarity: one I've read for a course and loved. I can't deny it's trash fiction and had me wondering why on earth it was on a university reading list. It's very evocative of both time and place, and really gets across the emptiness of the lifestyle it's trying to portray. The ambition displayed in it is gravity defying, and I'm not sure if it made me feel awe or really, really sad. The characters are fantastic, whether you love them or you hate them. It might be holiday reading but it's one I'd definitely recommend. 

Wonderboys by Michael Chabon

This one I have a love/hate relationship with. I read the first 100 pages and wanted to drop it in my bath or light it up with a candle. I haaaated the main character with a passion. Hated, hated, hated. He was the kind of cack-handedly misogynistic twat I would detest in real life. I also hated him because he was a writer, and this is a book about writers and the literary world. I thought I would find this interesting, yet it was making me cringe. But, you know, I think it was somewhat of a slow burner; by the end I wanted to understand the protagonist's choices and the world around him, and I found some humour in it. 

The Group by Mary McCarthy

Ok so this is a slight cheat as I'm only halfway through but I'm so in love. The female characters aren't all sassy feminists, no, but they're all flawed and well-rounded. They all have problems and successes, and make different life choices. All the mention of jellied dishes does make me want to throw up (what did people cook in the 60s?!) but overall, a good read.

On my to read list...

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer

I love Everything is Illuminated, and JSF is a tutor on the MA Creative Writing course I would sell an arm and leg to do at NYU. I haven't seen the film, but the blurb on this one makes me melt. 

Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann

Reviews often make me want to read a book, and this one was really loved. I also love the idea of the viewpoint it takes on New York and the multiple characters it explores. 

The Secret History by Donna Tartt

This has been on my to read list for a while due to the rave reviews it received, and it's been pushed up due to my enjoyment of The Goldfinch. How can a book be so universally loved? It has to be good, so I'm excited for this one. 

Thursday, 23 January 2014

'We'll turn Manhattan into an isle of joy...'

For all of you reality TV haters, this is not a post for you. For this post is about the most ubiquitous of them all, Kim K, and my unfailing love for her new wardrobe. In particular: her coats. 

I don't remember ever seeing her in outerwear before, and layering is often what makes me love someone's style, so it's a given that I haven't quite taken to Kim before. I hold preferences for East Coast-ers or Londoners who I can draw true inspiration from when I'm trying to get dressed for the drizzling rain. I suppose living in LA she doesn't really need outwear. But her new styling team have been cranking it up a notch. And boy am I envious. Even Kim K must love her coats, as she's been wearing them more than once, a rarity in the celeb world. What I wouldn't give for a raid of her coat hook.

(Pictures, Zimbio)

'I love Fall Fashion Week because it means lots of layering, long sweaters and vintage coats'- Rachel Zoe

Monday, 20 January 2014

'The city's a wondrous toy just made for a girl and boy...'

Aaaaaah I can't take it.

On one hand I wish I was rich and could spend my days shopping, lunching and reading.

On the other hand I know I'll feel much better about myself if I work for it.

But I just love clothes and beauty and books so much I can't handle it. Overload!


Cat eye sunglasses, ASOS- Yes, they're probably going to look a little odd on my face; a little too big, a little too pointed. But, what the heck, I love them, they're kooky.

Skirt- Topshop. I've seen it in store and visibly gasped. I have absolutely no where to wear it. I really should not buy it. Buuuuut it's reduced to £40 from £70 on the website.... temptation. 

Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Powder. Because I have the round cheeks of a chipmunk, and I want cheekbones. 

Cape, SheInside.  Will I look chic a la Rosie Londoner or Olivia Palermo or like a superhero? I cannot decide. I bought a mint coat from this site which I love, so I think it'll be a good 'un. 

I like to kid myself that as long as I don't get a credit card or an overdraft I'm okay. My bulging wardrobe says otherwise.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

'Now tell me what street compares to Mott Street in July...'

Every time the new season comes around, there are new beauty looks. There'll be a spread in each magazine on the new 'it' colours or products (but come on, how many shades of lippy can we have). But there's always a contradiction; I read for spring coats and coats of mascara and smudgy eyeliner are in, no bronzer.... but then I turn the page and in are California girl tans and no make-up make-up... Eh?

I don't feel like beauty trends are as followed as those in fashion; if I didn't read the beauty section of ELLE or InStyle I wouldn't have a clue. Beauty is less of a trend than fashion, eternal like style. It's more about what suits you and your personality. I suppose it's also down to the individuality of designers; they choose the best beauty to go with their clothes, not a consensus of what's 'in' that season. 

So what will I be attempting this year? 

The lack of bronzer sounds good to me. I really really really want the Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Powder for some subtle bronzer-less contour; however it's always out of stock and £35 on SpaceNK, ouuuuch. I've heard NYX's blush in taupe is a dupe, so I may be picking that up next time I go to NEXT (sorry for the awful word repetition).

I also like the idea of no make-up make-up; I think this is what I will try to perfect this season. 

I always wanted to look sophisticated and often go too OTT on the makeup front for the occassion just because I want to play around, but I really need to get the basics right first. 

If I'm feeling like a little pizazz I'm going to attempt to stay away from the eyeshadow brush and work on my bold lips. I'm craving a bold pale pink like Illamasqua's Lipstick in Liv (featured in Sunbeams Jess' most recent GRWM, from which I want basically all the products, that girl is so gorgeous!), or a popping shade like MAC's iconic Morange. Shades that I don't have, that are a little outside of my comfort zone. 

The icons? Anne Hathaway for her no-makeup make-up of subtle brown and pinky tones (so classy) and occassional rocking of a bright lip, my favourite YouTubers ViviannaDoesMakeup and Millie Mackintosh for her glowing skin. Also, Diane Kruger for her bright lipstick love. 

'I drive with my knees. Otherwise, how can I put on my lipstick and talk on my phone?'- Sharon Stone