Thursday, 31 March 2011

Mixing and Matching...

I find one of those most difficult items of clothing to buy is trousers! It wasn't so long ago that all you could seem to buy were jeans or leggings. I never ever wear jeans as they are so uncomfortable so this meant I had to live in leggings (much to the disapproval of the bf!)

There has been an increase in the styles available especially as 1970's style seems to be in at the moment, so I have come across loads of high waisted wide legs offerings from the usual highs street stores. So far I haven't been brave enough to try them out, I usually stick to slim leg trousers as I am quite petite, my favourites being some black ankle grazers from Springfields, (a shop I recently discovered in my local shopping centre) as casual/work trousers and some black (sort of harem style) pleated front trousers from H! by Henry Holland which look great dressed up as the fabric has a lovely sheen to it.

I decided to have a browse online, (I have given up buying clothes for lent so I am limited to window shopping only) and found a really unusual pair of palazzo style trousers from Dorothy Perkins. I quite like DP's as they often have similar styles to the other Arcadia stores such as Topshop and Miss Selfridge but a little bit cheaper and more wearable. These trousers are described as Nutmeg which I am assuming is a warm brown colour and is a colour I would never normally go for but I was feeling adventurous. I was a bit puzzled as to what would go with them and where exactly you could wear them so I had a bit of a play around.

Dorothy Perkins coral top
18 GBP -
TopShop grey blouse
$45 -
River island
40 GBP -
Printed blazer
33 GBP -
Dorothy Perkins twill pants
22 GBP -
Lace Trim Satchel at A|wear
35 EUR -
Red Herring cami
8 GBP -
Charlotte Russe wooden heel shoes
$15 -
Dorothy Perkins cream flat
16 GBP -
Miss Selfridge ballerina shoes
22 GBP -
Dorothy Perkins black sandal
27 GBP -
Wristlet handbag
$28 -
TopShop oversized hat
$45 -

I used the same trousers to create 4 different outfits: for a smart summer office look I combined them with a linen jacket, patent pumps and a stunning satchel bag, for relaxing by the beach a floppy sunny hat, crop top and pretty crochet shoes, a casual weekend outfit with wedges and a floral blazer and I even managed to dress them up with some gorgeous heels and a clutch bag! I made sure that all the items cost less than £50 each, the trousers themselves only cost £22 (reduced from £32!).

So there you have it, one pair of trousers, 4 different uses! Let me know what you think of them and if you would be brave enough to wear the nutmeg palazzo pants...

Alyssa xx

P.S Whilst we're on the subject of mixing and matching check out Mixnmatch's Bargainista blog. A self-confessed bargain hunter!

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Feature: H! by Henry Holland

Name: H! by Henry Holland
Available from: Debenhams (online and in selected stores)
Price range: Affordable high street prices!
Style: Quirky prints, bold colours, smart casual, wearable

I was recently introduced to the H! by Henry Holland collection thanks to a friend on Big Wardrobe (Check out her blog here) and fell in love with it! The first items I got were a gorgeous floral tshirt with lace sleeves, a patterned jumper dress and a purple quilted shoulder top and still love wearing these now. I also took advantage of the Debenhams 20% off day and splashed out on quite a few other items, my favourites are shown in this set :

H by Henry Holland top
14 GBP -
H by Henry Holland top
14 GBP -
H by Henry Holland v neck blouse
16 GBP -
H! by Henry Holland black pants
13 GBP -
Debenhams black tube skirt
15 GBP -
H by Henry Holland black boot
40 GBP -
Croco Heart Paperweights
$35 -

Today I decided to wear the gorgeous floral bodycon skirt (above), I have had it a while but struggled to find anything to go with it, then I realised the purple Henry Holland top I already had matches quite well and looks really smart for work with black tights and boots. I would love those lace up boots and even though they have been reduced to about £40 I can't justify buying anymore winter boots, especially as Spring is in the air!

So I recommend you take a look at the collection online, it may not be to everyones taste but I found that everything is so wearable and is very good quality too. Its also quite different to most things around at the moment so you might some pieces which wont be out of fashion in 2 minutes and you can wear for years to come.

Alyssa xx

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

The River Island Challenge

Ok, so I'm not a fan of River Island at all, I walk in and find everything looks poor quality, overpriced and often a little bit 'chavvy' dare I say it. The main problem I have is that I find something I like then realise it wont go with anything I already have in my wardrobe so I'm forced to look around to find a whole outfit.

I have set myself a challenge today to create some collages made up entirely from River Island items, the catch is they have to be outfits that I would be happy to wear myself, tricky eh. I ended up doing two, one for a sunny Spring day and then one for a warm Summer's day, hoping we have some!

I like to be quite smart even though I don't have to be dressed up at work and this shift dress is ideal, I think the casual blazer helps to dress it down and balances the neutral colours out. I wear boots all the time as my feet get cold but never owned any in a colour other than black so these beige ones would make a nice change. Tights are a necessity, sunglasses are optional though! Finally the bag would be perfect for me assuming its big enough to fit everything I need in!

This would be the sort of thing I like to wear on holiday, I have a dress very similar as I love anything polka dot but I find playsuits are a bit more practical. The sandals look really comfy and I neeed comfortable shoes. I have wanted a bag like this one for ages but they are always too small, I think the gorgeous colour livens up the whole outfit. Finally a headband to finish off to give it a 50's theme!
River Island grey shoes
40 GBP -
River Island heart handbag
25 GBP -
River Island black hair accessory
5.99 GBP -

I don't think I did too bad, obviously you never know what they will look like once they arrive. I ordered about 10 items in last years river island sale and I sent every single item back as they looked completely different from the website, hopefully things are getting better there!

Alyssa xx

Monday, 28 March 2011

My First Blog Post


I keep starting blogs then deleting them so this time I'm writing just for myself about things I like. I might even just add pictures and not bother writing! But as this is my first post I think I ought to put something. This weekend I turned the telly on and Housesitter with on (what a great film for a Saturday afternoon!)  Its trashy and dated but made me feel good. I really liked some of the outfits Goldie Hawn was wearing.
The film was released in 1992 so her style still has elements of late 80's such as oversized jumpers, tight leggings and headscarves. Bleachwash denim features quite heavily too but personally I'm not a fan so I have ignored it. I know a lot of people hate 80's style and say it has been done to death but sometimes it can work really well as look as its not over the top. I have been desperately searching for screenshots from the film but they are few and far between and this was all I could find!

 So, Im afraid these arn't the most exciting but you can see that Goldie Hawn would look fabulous in almost anything though, infact during the film Steve Martin's character actually comments on how hot she looks in some of her most dreadful clothes (think reindeer jumper, mans shirt etc.)

So I was inspired to make a collage of some of my favourite items inspired by her look which I think I could get away with wearing (except maybe those sunglasses but I just though they were rather dazzling) and it ended up as a rather gorgeous Spring outfit, neutral colours are still really popular and look great when you are out and about enjoying the beautiful sunshine we're having at the moment. Lets just hope it lasts...
By Malene Birger silk blouse
159 GBP -

Bodkin boatneck sweater
$325 -
Ballet flat
$895 -
Flower hair accessory
$19 -
Dorothy Perkins skinny belt
6 GBP -
Vintage sunglass
125 GBP -

Alyssa xx