29 November 2013

A bit of a do!

My work Christmas 'do' is fast approaching and when a say a bit of a do I really mean it!! Nothing fancy....no frills just a meal straight from work (no turkey even, I'm having fish & chips!!). This presents me with the usual problems.....what the hell to wear?!! There won't be time to get really dolled up and in my place of work.....well it's all pretty casual!! I do want to make a bit of an effort as there really aren't to that many reasons for me to do so these days!! Luckily the staples that I tend to wear to work are some black skinny trousers from Gap, worn with black suede dicker boots which I think you will agree is a pretty good foundation to start off with!! Now, I don't like to be cold so I've started by looking at sweaters. The great thing is with a sweater even if it's a bit glitzy you can still get away with it during the day!! You can bling it up with some fab statement earrings for an evening out but really tone it down with boyfriends jeans and trainers for day to get maximum usage out of it!! Well that's my plan should I go down this road! And the thought behind this....obviously came from Pinterest although the boyfriends are sadly paired with these lovely heels that really have no place in my life at the moment!

As it's Black Friday whilst I type this, there are some amazing discount deals to be had so here I am starting with a few budget busting items (thank goodness there is only another month of my challenge to go!!).

First up a gorgeous Ted Baker Bronte Sparkle Collared number

Feeling a lot of love for this Boutique by Jaeger jumper too!

As House of Fraser have such great deals over the next couple of days I have also had my head turned by this lovely little Therapy sequin knit jumper.

Moving on....this Warehouse sweater features a titchy bit of colour in the way of some orange sparkles!

Next came up trumps with a couple of Lipsy treasures, All Over Gem Jumper 

Or there is always the Lipsy Chiffon Back Sequin Jumper just gorgeous!

Rather taken with this lovely cropped lace sleeved ASOS number 

Staying with ASOS, although tis a River Island sweater 

H&M have totally come up with tons of my wardrobe staples this season, this addition would be no exception! 

Lastly......just throwing a total spanner in the works! I have had a hankering for a fur gilet which I was thinking I could wear over an existing black Gap crew neck sweater with a statement necklace, obviously something I could style loads of other different ways....not just for a Christmas do! If I can hunt down this beast in New Look over the next few days....well it will do nicely!

The Pin that lead along this line of thinking.....

There has to be a Christmas 'do' outfit in there somewhere.....what shall I do ladies? Thoughts please :0)

To finish off, here are my outfits for the past week....eek! Must apologise for my lack of posts lately! I blame some extreme lethargy.....or maybe it's been down to a marathon of Breaking Bad seasons 1-4, downing at least 2 episodes per evening!! Anyone else addicted to this show?? Gosh, it's so bad it's good right??!

First outfit was from Saturday and 'twas the usual shirt and sweater combo....my favourite as it happens!!

And with a coat thrown over

Gap sweater
Aquascutum shirt (gifted)
Gap Outlet skinny's
Ash Genials 
Zara Coat
Primark scarf

Next was a Sunday going out 'outfit'....roast dinner at 'The Fox @ Broughton Gifford

Next Blazer
Clements Ribeirio top (T K Maxx)
Topshop Leigh jeans
Rag & Bone boots
River Island (ASOS) pea coat

Monday's outfit consisted of a laid back school run look

H&M sweatshirt
Zara Tartan shirt
Gap Outlet Skinny's
Converse brown leather Hi-top's
H&M Parka
Primark bobble hat, great for 3 quid if you are prone to losing these things like me!

Another school run outfit from me for Tuesday

H&M cable sweater
Gap shirt
H&M jeggings
Steve Madden boots
River Island pea coat
Primmark bobble hat

Wednesday's offerings, I was really not doing that much!

All Saint's sweater (bought in a clothes sale a couple of years ago for a fiver!)
H&M top
Gap Outlet super skinny's
Ash Genials

So there we have it! What say you??!! Do you have a big Chritmas 'do' to go to or is yours rather more subdued like mine? Would love to hear what you will be up to and most importantly what you will be wearing!

Until next time, Michelle x

18 November 2013

Fancy a bit of Urban fleecewear?!

Sounds pretty cool huh! Fleece always makes me think of little old ladies in heather coloured offerings from the classic collection at M&S but this range from Uniqlo has well and truly won me over! The temperatures are really set to drop this week and so thankfully I mayl have found the perfect solution just in the nick of time!! I have to say I'm sorely tempted by a lot of it......which could be really bad news for my budget challenge!

I'm diving headlong into the best bits of the range.....no point in beating about the bush!! This fluffy fleece crew-neck T-shirt is fab.....would look great layered over one of their long sleeved Heat tech tops and is a brilliant price at £14.90. This looks so cuddly....not to mention warm!

These micro fleece track pant style trousers look fantastic too.....love the sporty luxe look about them!

Presenting the heat-tech fleece hoody 

Here's the heat-tech crew neck long sleeve t-shirt, there is also a short sleeve version if you prefer!

There are some great pieces of outerwear too, starting with this fleece vest

If you want sleeves there is always the fleece blouson

Next up is this lovely coat.....looks like a cross between a duffle and a parka......and oh-so snug! 

By far my favourite of this lovely collection is this Woolly Fleece Coat which is on special offer at £29.90!! Race to to the checkout for this one!! Love it!

The range only seems comes in black (with the exception of the fleece coat above which comes in cream too).....guess that's where the catchy 'Urban fleecewear' title (Uniqlo's term not mine) came from! It certainly does look quite edgy and 'street' being all black. For me this is the perfect alternative to the loungewear out there at the moment, as a lot of the stuff I've seen seems a little bit too glam for me to sit around in (oh-so practical I am!) and of course you wouldn't look like you were popping out in your pyjamas......if the need arose to dash to the shops for a pint of milk! 

Can you see yourself being won over by this trendy range of fleece? Will you be taking the plunge and going for any of Uniqlo's offerings?? Have you purchased any loungewear yet? If not, what kind of loungewear do you see yourself going for? Would love to hear your thoughts!

And so onto the outfits I have been wearing these past few days

Starting with a school run outfit from last week

Zara coat
Gap long sleeve top
Primark white vest
H&M tie-dye jeans
Ashe Genial wedges
Primark scarf

Next up is a slobby Saturday look for a day on the sofa nursing a fuggy head and trying to fight off the lurgy!

Warehouse Cardigan
Uniqlo long-line sweatshirt
Topshop Leigh jeans
Zara Hi-tops
Primark scarf

You may have noticed I don't dress up much.......but here's the proof I do now and again! We had a christening on Sunday which did require me to be a bit smarter than usual! Got myself in a real tiz about what to wear and was a bit wary of going all black but after reading this lovely little saying, my fears were relieved a tad!

So a big thank you to a certain very stylish @Mrs W over on Avenue 57......this made me feel a whole lot better about going dark......after all who am I to argue with Christian Dior!

Here's the outfit!

Zara jacket (last year)
Vintage LBD
River Island shoes
H&M pearls

Finishing with today's outfit

H&M sweater
Uniqlo shirt
H&M jeggings
Steve Madden boots

Time to share a few new purchases. The first purchase was a little bit of new bling to liven up the christening outfit! I have been after a pearl statement necklace for a while, I knew this would be a good way to liven up a smart outfit and they were several looks on my pin board featuring pearls being worn with a shirt and sweater combo so you see.....I had a plan. As funds are pretty low this month budget wise I have been particularly resourceful in trying to secure all my fashion yearnings (all my scrimping and saving may well have gone out the window now thanks to Uniqlo!!). I managed to scrounge one of the £5 off £20 spend H&M vouchers (thanks mum! She copied my H&M boucle coat!) to purchase the necklace........and another wishlist item which was the cable knit sweater in the above pic! Here's a close up of the necklace, as you can hardly see it in the outfit photo!

You may have also noticed the addition of a couple of new Primarni scarves in the shots above! I was simply unable to resist getting the red tartan one and then I saw the cream one and well no point in tormenting myself into trying to decide between the two......so I just got both! That now leaves me with £16 in the budget to last until 1st December! I still have a wishlist as long as my arm and now Uniqlo have thrown a spanner in the works.......what's a girl to do??

Until next time!

Michelle x

12 November 2013

A tiny tweak to the current uniform!

I may have borrowed the idea for this look

......from here

Not an exact copy but it gave me the inspiration to try something similar! Which leads me nicely into my first November purchase......keeping that budget challenge firmly in mind! I finally took the plunge after much cogitating and went for the Zara tartan shirt which I may have seen on the WIT blog first! Just call me No.1 fan......major style stalker!

It's turned out to be a great buy! It would never have occurred to me to put a long sleeved shirt underneath a short sleeved sweater but I am pleased as punch with this outfit! You may remember this Ferragamo jumper from a couple of posts back. It's surely now classed as vintage as I bought it over 25 years ago when I worked in a boutique called Kimberly in Bath (my first job after leaving school). So glad this is back in my possession again after a lengthy loan spell with my mum! I think the button detail around the neck is very reminiscent of the statement necklace styley! The shirt works especially well under the jumper too as it's a Peter Pan collar and so smaller than a normal shirt collar thus really showing off the neckline feature. Of course I would have loved to have teamed it with some devilish heels like the lovely Laura but it may be a tad over the top for a school run in the suburbs!

I topped the look off with my River Island pea coat for braving the outdoors. The jeans are Zara and the boots from Oasis (eBay purchase).

What do you think......have I pulled this look off? Is this a look you might try? Would love to know your thoughts!

And so onto the round up of what I have been wearing these past few days.

Firstly.......again although with a slightly different angle with a sweatshirt instead of sweater and shirt combo

Zara sweatshirt
Gap shirt
Dorothy Perkins coated jeggings
Office Boots

A different take on the layered look with a denim jacket under a coat

Zara coat
Vintage Levi jacket
Gap long sleeve top
Gap Outlet super skinny's
Nine West biker boots

Slouchy Sunday outfit

Uniqlo sweater
H&M long sleeve top underneath and Primark vest
Gap real straight jeans

Ending with a black outfit for a bleak Monday weather-wise.

Jaeger jumper
Gap legging jeans
Office boots
New Look tusk pendant

Apologies for continuing along with my current love affair of the shirt and sweater ensemble, it shows no sign of waning either as with my lifestyle (basically I'm pretty boring with it revolving around school or work!) this look has been a perfect way of up-dating my wardrobe this season so I'm sticking with it! Sorry if I'm boring the pants off you but next time I promise there will be something a bit different as I'm off to a christening at the weekend which will require something a tad more dressy than my usual offerings! Although I can't promise there won't be more on the shirt and sweater front! I'll be back soon with another purchase or 2! 

Michelle x

6 November 2013

It's all about the shirt & sweater action!

I can't tell you how much I am loving the shirt and sweater combo now that I have embraced it that is! It took me a while to get with the program but I have found tons of inspiration literally everywhere and boy has it revived some items in the wardrobe that had been long forgotten! Up until June I only had one shirt, a denim H&M shirt and to be honest I hadn't quite worked out how to style it looking over some of my older posts on Avenue 57. It's all a bit, well..........playing it safe and dare I say, a bit boring?!

I think it looks a lot better here, a look from a couple of posts back doing the double denim and worn under this H&M sweater.

I now seem to have built up quite a selection of shirts, the first purchase of which was a Gap chambray shirt which I bought back in the Summer. The chambray shirt was a great investment as I wore it with white skinny's and boyfriend shorts but it will see me through the Winter under a Breton sweater something like this...........

or cream cable jumper if I can find one that fits the bill (I have tried and taken back 2 so far!)! I hope to be able to reproduce these next couple of looks, starting with an outfit from my style heroine Michelle Williams!

Love this pic for inspiration too.......a pearl statement necklace has now been added to the ever growing Christmas list as I want to look like this!

Sticking with the cable knit sweater but mixing it up a bit with a check shirt.....I love this!! Luckily the next shirt purchase I made this year was in September when I added a shirt to my basket when purchasing a few bits from Uniqlo......I had no intention of even trying it on as I only popped it in to get a free delivery but when it arrived it turned my head, I tried it, loved it and so I kept it! Glad I did as I would like to be able to replicate this look at some point!

Luckily for me my lovely mum gifted me a white Aquascutum shirt a few weeks back to add to my little shirt stash! Not quite sure how I managed to reach my 40s without such a classic piece as a white shirt in the wardrobe but now I have one in my possession I shall be working it for all it's worth! Just like this!

Or going a lot more edgy like this!

My November mission is, as I mentioned before is to try and find a cream cable sweater and add some more check shirts to my hoard. Ideally I'd like to pinch this kind of look so I'm after a black and white check shirt and a black watch tartan looking number as well.......researching those next! Would also love something along the lines of this sweater.....it's gorgeous, hmm...... maybe room for that in next months budget??!

After that my next task will be to find a spot shirt........and to add a bit of colour just like these next couple of looks!

There looks like there could well be a need for a spotty sweater too! The spot and check looks great!

And a bit of spot on spot action!

With all this lovely inspiration in mind here are some of the looks I have been wearing over the past few days with the shirt and sweater obsession firmly in the forefront of my outfit planning!

Firstly the Uniqlo check shirt, which I wore under a Gap fine knit sweater(old) with Gap legging jeans (old), Office boots and Primark necklace

I added last years Zara biker coat to edge up the look a bit more

Here's what I did with my classic white shirt. Worn with Gap stripe sweater (last year), Dorothy Perkins coated jeaggings (last years), Office boot and Primark necklace again! Not known for passing comment, the husband did a double take and this well and truly got his royal seal of approval!

I am desperately trying to inject a some colour here with the pink (ancient pashmina style) scarf with my H&M coat.

It's quite hard to see in this photo but I've gone for the double denim and charcoal again. The sweater is a Gap v-neck that I saved it from my mums charity bag, so again.......thanks mum! I am very lucky to have such a super stylish mum! I've teamed it with H&M shirt, Gap Outlet skinny's, Topshop coat (last year) and Steve Madden boots.

Finally the other bits and bobs I've been wearing, starting with this ensemble from last week consisting of Gap blazer, H&M kids top, Gap original fit jeans and Converse

My Sunday scruffs look, another idea hood-winked from Pinterest was mixing stripes with a bit of camoflague! Top is French Connection, Zara jeggings and Hi-tops and scarf is Efurt.

Lastly yesterday's outfit which is a tad dull I'm afraid but it was all about dressing for the weather.......and it lashed down on the school run so the trusty hooded parka from H&M was a must over a long-line Uniqlo black sweatshirt, Gap outlet super skinny jeans, Nine West boots, Oasis scarf and Balenciaga bag.

I have a wish list as long as my arm for November and with my budget challenge still ongoing I only have 72 quid in the coffers!! Should make for a very interesting month.......although I am still delving into the depths of my wardrobe to find other ways in which I can work this style!

So are you a fan of this look? Have you tried it yet? Would love to hear your thoughts!

Be back soon, Michelle x