A Fedora and a Christmas Catch Up

Jacket – Upcycled Dressing Gown from Local Vintage Shop
Organic Cotton T Shirt by A Question Of
Jeans/ Jeggings – Oxfam
Boots – high street
Necklace – won in a charity raffle

It feels like a long time since I last posted an outfit post. Life has been pretty busy lately and I have been struggling to find time to eat and sleep never mind blog! Over the last few days my little girl has not been well which means this weekend we have all had to cancel all of our social and festive plans including 2 dinners with friends, a birthday party and a Christmas bazaar. On the plus side perhaps a lazy weekend around the house is just what we all need. I am taking the chance to catch up with a little blogging and reading of my favourites blogs plus sorting out my wardrobe. Can you believe I still haven’t got around to swapping over my summer and winter clothes yet.

My Christmas pressy from Mr S is a lovely Fedora hat by Pachacuti which I chose myself. I thought I ought to try it on to check that it fits and he agreed that perhaps I should just have it now to save him having to wrap it up. I haven’t had the chance to wear it out yet as stuck in the house for the next few days but hopefully will do soon. If you wanted to give someone an amazing Christmas pressy this year, Pachacuti do a great little package of a mini hat with a gift voucher so that they can pick out their own choice from the website but also have something lovely to open on Christmas day. Pachacuti have a great choice of classic Fedora in different colours and sizes but also a range of other styles. Love this idea!

Here are just a few of my festive instagrams from the last few weeks.

Christmas Tree Fairy

Pressies – Handknitted  and Fair Trade Hats by Fair + True

Christmas cards from Oxfam

The next 2 weeks and the run up to Christmas look to be super busy with Christmas lunches, parties, school plays and carol concerts as well as the usual christmas preparations. Not that I am not looking forward to it, I love Christmas and all of its sparkliness! Definitely going to be ready for some time off over Christmas though.

What are you are you up to for Christmas, do you have any fun plans?

With warmest wishes

Upcycled Fashion – 10 Fresh Brands to Check Out!

I am a big fan of upcycled fashion, not only is it probably one of the most sustainable ways to shop but there are also some really amazing, quirky, fun and unique styles of upcycled fashion around. The great thing about upcycled fashion is the way that creative designers are taking something old and rewHere are some of my favourites (you can also find plenty of upcycled/ recycled fashion on style-is.co.uk).

Top Shop Reclaim to Wear

Upcycled Fashion - Topshop Reclaim to Wear

I couldn’t talk about upcycled fashion without a mention of one of the most talked about upcycled collections at the moment. The design collaboration between Topshop and Orsola De Castro and Fillipo Ricci of Reclaim to Wear  features nine amazing floral pieces that were disregarded from previous collections. The collection features pretty and on trend cami’s, skirts, shirts, shorts and a dress. It is also all made in the UK with prices starting at a very affordable £34.

Motel Vintage

Motel Vintage

Another newly launched Motel Vintage, features re-worked vintage fabrics in contemporary trend hitting Motel shapes! There is a great selection including made from top quality vintage that has been sourced from LA flea markets to London thrift stores. Each piece is a one off and the collection is constantly evolving with new styles. Look out for leather trimmed maxi dresses and cute Narla dungaree dresses available in a range of prints. Again prices are very affordable and start at £25 for a top.

Fix Up, Look Sharp

uocycled fashion crop top

I love this label which is adding a whole new dimension to the concept of charity shopping. Not only can you help a hugely worthwhile charity,CLIC Sargent which is the UK’s leading cancer charity for children and young people and their families, but you can also minimise the environmental impact of your clothing and get yourself a unique piece of that is also really now! The creative team have transformed the charity shop donations that they receive into some really fresh styles. They are available through their shop at ASOS marketplace. I particularly love their accessories which include collars and necklaces and the crop tops. Prices are a little more than you would pay in a charity shop but I think in this case you definitely get what you pay for.


Upcycled fashion antiform

Antiform is a well established upcycling label which pushes the boundaries of ethical, sustainable design by using reclaimed materials and mixing fashion forward shapes with heritage craft. All of the materials that are used in Antiform designs are sourced from within 20 miles of their studio boutique in Leeds.

Traid Remade

Upcycled fashion TraidremadeTRAID is a clothes recycling organisation and in 2002, they launched TRAIDremade, their upcycled fashion label. They create fashion forward pieces from fabrics that would otherwise have been thrown away. The collection is constantly evolving but at the moment includes such gems as a denim style jacket made from vintage curtains and a unisex parka cut from reclaimed cotton and cotton mix rolls, and incorporating vintage newspaper print remnants. Again the collection is all made in the UK.

Rokit Recycled

Recycled fashion leather backpack

Many people will know about Rokit for their great selection of vintage clothing and shops based in vintage shopping meccas such as Brick Lane and Camden but they also have a great upcycled collection consisting of fresh pieces which are handmade from original vintage clothing and fabrics in their North London workshop. The beauty of these pieces is that no two are ever the same. Look out for festival fashion favourites like denim shorts and crop tops but also beautiful accessories including lace collars and leather bags.

Urban Renewal


Upcycled fashion - Urban Renewal

Urban Renewal is Urban Outfitters very own upcycled label. The inhouse vintage buyers at Urabn Outfitters scour the globe for the best of vintage pieces and fabrics which are then reworked in to modern pieces. Look out for denim cut off shorts, bomber jackets, customised t shirts and pretty ditsy floral print dresses which are great for working that nineties grunge look.

Bottle Top

recycled fashion - Bottle top bags

I really love the idea that rubbish can be turned into something really amazing and Bottle Top is one of the best examples of this that I have seen so far using recycled aluminium ring pulls to glamorous accessories. Bottle Top is an ethical fashion brand working in the UK, Africa and Brazil to create a sustainable livelihood for the highly skilled craftsmen as well as supporting young people through their foundation which works on education projects, which empower them to take control of their lives. The label created by Cameron Saul  son of the founder of Mulberry (Roger Saul) which explains why these beautiful bags are aimed at the luxury/ designer market.

Supported by Rain

Upcycled fashion - supproted by rain

Supported by rain is an interesting concept. They take recycled umbrellas and end of roll water proof materials and turn them into stylish one off rain coats that are super practical (especially if you live in the UK). Each piece in the collection is name after an amazon rain forest tribe! You can even send them your own umbrella and they will upcycle it into a raincoat, just for you.


Recycled fashion REtrose

Retrose is a small upcycling label by Cardiff based Emma Rees that is available to buy through Etsy and Tell us Fashion. Emma takes old pieces and brings them right up to date using screen printing, foiling and embellishment. Look out for bright statement skirts and foiled brogues.

What do you think of recycled fashion? would you or do you wear it? and do you have any amazing brands that ought to be added to this list?

I hope that you are having a good start to the week and enjoying the amazing weather. I am definitely going to try and make the most of the fantastic light with some outfit posts.

With warmest wishes


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Mother’s Day and a Vintage Dress

I had a lovely Mother’s Day which started with a very rare chance for a lie in followed by card and cuddles from my girls (the best bit of all), breakfast in bed and then the chance to work on a little sewing project that I have been meaning to do for a very a long time.

I got the dress at Vintage Fashion Fair London probably about a year ago (in case you are interested, they happen to have a fair on this weekend and there are free tickets available on their website here). It is made from a lovely lace material and has been beautiful constructed with the seams finished, a complete contrast to some of the clothing that you can buy on the high street these day. As much as I loved the dress, it was made for someone with a long body, I have a very short body! The waist fell on my hips making me look quite strange. I decided the best option was to take out about 2 inches of fabric under the bust turning it into an empire line and raising the waist into its correct place.

The problem and part of the reason for the length procrastination was the zip. I assumed I would have to remove it completely in order to make the alternation and then replace with a new zip. I was a little under confident in my ability to sew in a zip from scratch even though I did do it many years ago a sewing class. Anyway to cut a long story short, I posted on the Good Wardrobe (a fantastic resource) to get some advice and low and behold discovered there was no need to remove the zip just unpick it a bit. You can check out the advice I got here. Whole project completed in just over an hour leaving time to cook dinner (a homemade chicken pie) with the girls and enjoy a glass of wine or two with Mr S.

I hope you had a lovely weekend. For now its back to reality, work, snow and freezing cold weather.

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

Goodbye Dragon, Hello Snake

This time last year when we welcomed in the Chinese year of the dragon, I decided that I ought to get on with a little project that I had been planning to turn a vintage dressing gown with a Chinese dragon design into a jacket. I bought the dressing gown a while before in a local vintage shop and it was one of those projects that I had kind of been meaning to do but never got round to. Of course being the procrastinator that I am, I fully intended to do it sometime during the year of the dragon but this weekend, it suddenly dawned on me that we were suddenly about to say goodbye the year of the dragon and if I didn’t get on and do it now, it would probably be the next year of the dragon before I finally got round to it. So I  kicked myself into action.

kimono jacket

This is the finished project. I have treated myself to little red dress on order from Oxfam which I am hoping will go perfectly with it.

This is what I started out with a vintage 70’s dressing gown in a shiny satin Chinese/ dragon design fabric that I couldn’t resist. I just shortened it and repaired a few of the seams that were coming loose. I may also add a button. I had so much fabric left that I am going to turn it into a skirt, hopefully it won’t take me a whole year to get round it this time.

I hope you had a good weekend. Mine was pretty mundane, mostly working and cleaning the house and some yummy Chinese food of course. I am getting pretty sick of this cold wet weather and with a whole week of children home for half term, I am really hoping it doesn’t carry on all week. Still could be worse, could be snow!

Happy Chinese New Year and roll on spring!

With warmest wishes


DIY – The Perfect Fit

I almost always find that there is some aspect of the fit of a piece of clothing that is just not quite right. Being short I find that I often need to shorten clothes but I also have problems with dresses and tops being tight across the shoulders, I am not a fan of wearing sleeves unless they are made of stretchy material. This months DIY round up on Ethical Fashion Bloggers was all about changing a piece of clothing for the perfect fit and I decided it was about time I tackled one of the pieces of clothing that has been hanging in my wardrobe unworn for a while.

I used to love wearing this dress because of the applique flowers around the hemline but it was a little tight on the shoulders and sleeves, so I decided to remove them giving me a little more room to move. In case you are wondering the headwear is by House of Beth.

I hope that you are having a lovely weekned. Christmas has officially begun in our house and Mr Style Eyes and the children have been busy putting up the decorations. Are you ready for Christmas or do you prefer to wait until a bit nearer the time?

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

Upcycling – Better the Devil you Sew

I love upcycling or refashioning, whatever you want to call it! I think it is the best way to give old clothes a new lease of life and the perfect opportunity to get creative, make something a bit different to wear and of course, it is so much better for the environment than buying something new. I used to make clothes from scratch but by upcycling, you can often make something amazing in next to no time. If you are still not convinced of the merits of upcycling, perhaps that fact that it is a major trend at the moment might sway you, you can just check out the DIY section on Pinterest for evidence (and inspiration!)

Better the Devil You Sew is a new Collection at Oxfam Brighton made completely by volunteers from damaged clothes that are donated to Oxfam. Check out the video above for ideas and inspiration. It just shows what you can achieve with a few old clothes.

Do you like upcycling? please share your latest project.

BTW- you can check out my latest post for Oxfam Fashion – Our Top Picks for Autumn Winter.

With warmest wishes

Ceri x


Striking Vintage Scarf Tops

If you read my blog regularly, you will know how much I love beautiful scarves. I love the luxurious silk, the rich colours and eye catching patterns but if I am honest I don’t wear them as much as I would like to because they can get on my nerves a bit and keep falling off, especially on a windy day. So when I heard from Marilyn at Vintage Fashion Fair London that she had designed some tops made from genuine vintage scarves, I couldn’t wait to see more.

The three styles of top are Made in the UK from beautiful scarves that are mostly silk and some are even designer brands like Liberty. Each top is completely unique and two of the styles are made using two scarves, hand stitched together, one for front and one for the back giving a unique and interesting combination which really appeals to my love of pattern mixing. These tops can be worn either way, so if you fancy a change you can just turn them around. The other style of top is a halterneck style with a thin silver choker band that holds the scarf.

The full collection of tops will be available to see and buy at Vintage Fashion Fair London in Primrose Hill on 11th November (this Sunday). Prices start at £55.

You can find out more details about the fair and register for free ticket at www.vintagefashionfairlondon.co.uk.

I hope that you are having a good week.

With warmest wishes

Ceri x


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A DIY Dip Dyed Cardigan

Cardigan – Charity shop/ upcycled
Dress – People Tree
Boots – Clarks
Necklaces – Made UK and New Look

This month the DIY/ upcycling challenge on Ethical Fashion Bloggers was all about knitwear. I never have enough knitwear so decided to invest in a cardigan from the local charity shop for just over a fiver and have a go at dip dying it. If you would like to know what I did, read on…

Before I continue with this post, would just like to say that this DIY is a little more messy than I had anticipated. Luckily I did it outside but I would recommend extreme caution if dip dying indoors and make sure you wear rubber gloves!

I choose Dylon navy blue dye and a cream coloured cardigan.

I mixed up a third of the Dylon Dye according to the instructions and put the cardigan in and stirred occasionally for abour 25 minutes. Obviously this wasn’t quite enough as the top part of the cardigan had a slightly mottled effect, although I quite like it like this.

I then rung the cardigan out (wearing the rubber gloves) added another third of the dye to the bowl, clipped the cardigan on the hanger and dipped the bottom to thirds in to the dye and left for about 25mins.

I then added the last third of dye, mixed and dipped in the bottom part of the cardigan for another 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Finally I rinsed the cardigan in cold water a few times and put on a rinse in the washing machine.

I am quite impressed with how this worked out even though it had  a slight mottled effect. Despite the mess, it was quite easy and think I may well give dip dying another try, perhaps something like a trench coat or pair of jeans next time. What do you think? have you ever dip dyed anything or are you ready to give dip dying a try?

If you like DIYing or outfit challenges, why not join us at www.ethicalfashionbloggers.com?

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

An Upcycled Lace and Floral Dress

upcycling project

This months DIY/ upcycling challenge at Ethical Fashion Bloggers had the theme of lace. With no time to go charity shopping, I had to use something that I already had in my wardrobe. This lace top and floral dress were the the perfect candidates. I don’t really wear the lace top much as it is too see through to wear on its own and the dress being strapless had a number of issues for me including the potential for it to end up around my waist but I love the colourful floral print. I definitely feel much more elegant and safer when I wear a high neck.

upcycling project

So I decided to combine the dress and the top to make a high necked dress with the added bonus of a fantastic lace/ floral pattern clash slightly inspired by these dresses for AW12 at McQ Alexander McQueen.

upcycled dress project

All if did was try on the dress over the top (which I wore backwards to get the high neck) and pin it in place. The most difficult part was trying to take the dress over without injuring myself on the pins. Then I sewed along the along the existing stitching line with my sewing machine to attach the two together. I then trimmed off some of the excess material on the top underneath.

floral lace dress

This project was super simple which is great as I very quickly lose interest if something takes too long. It was the perfect rainy Sunday afternoon project and still left me time to cook up some comfort food; a great big pot of vegetable soup of lunch in the week, rhubarb crumble for after dinner and scones for my girls who just dont seem to stop eating lately.

I am also entering this post in Ta-dah Tuesday at Faith Hope and Charity Shopping.

I hope you are having a lovely weekend despite the wet and cold weather.

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

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Upcycled Fashion, Olympic Style by Queenie and Ted

The Olympics are not too far away and despite not really having any interest at all in watching sport (except the gymnatics) usually, I can’t help getting just a little caught up in the whole thing. When I saw a press release pop into my inbox for Queenie and Ted, I definitely started getting into the Olympics mood.

Queenie and Ted upcycle high quality clothing and sell it in their shop in London’s historic Columbia Rd. In celebration of the Olympics, they have created some quirkly motifs featuring synchronised swimmers and leaping gymnasts to embellish one off skirts dresses and jackets.

The two fine artists have a passion for sustainable fashion and use old
curtains, tablecloths and finds from the airing cupboard to embellish and breath
life into vintage and  nearly new fashion. Old buttons, trimmings and
embroidered details add texture and colour. With prices starting at £28, they are also surprisingly affordable. They even have a bespoke service for turning your old clothes into something special, I love this idea!

clothes for olympics

upcycled jacket

Fun embellisments over eyecatching patters, I love them, especially the dress.what do you think?

With warmest wishes

Ceri x


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