NYE 2017 – Brag Vintage

vintage dress

I wanted to share my outfit that I will be wearing for new years eve, a lovely vintage maxi dress kindly sent to me by Brag Vintage. When I was asked whether I would like to pick me something out from their online vintage store or ASOS marketplace store, I loved this dress so much I couldn’t resist it but was worried that it might not fit. I usually find that maxi dresses are far too long and vintage sizing can sometimes be difficult to judge but I was happy and surprised when it turned up to find that it fitted perfectly. The sizing on the website was spot on!

Brag Vintage pride themselves on picking out the best high quality second clothing that has been made to last. They offer it a new lease of life by selling it in their online stores with attention to detail in their listings so that you know exactly what you are buying. They classify vintage pieces as being over 20 years old so you can be sure that anything in their stores pre dates the trend for fast fashions is well made enough to have stood the test of time. They also dye, repair and customise items to extend their useful life. They have a great range which includes denim jackets, jeans, vintage jumpers, cardigans, dresses, customised denim shorts and accessories. I have already spotted a few other lovely things that I may treat myself to with money I have been given for Christmas.

The lovely people at Brag Vintage were kind enough to give me a 15% off discount code to share. Just enter  STYLEEYES at checkout!

I was especially pleased to have a ‘new’ old (vintage) dress to wear for New Years Eve as this will mark the start of a ‘no new clothes for a year’ challenge for me in 2018. I  first completed the ‘no new clothes’ challenge in 2015. You can read about it in my posts:

No New Clothes for a Year

No New Clothes for a Year – an Update

This challenge definitely changed the way I think about shopping and it has become much more of a only to do when really needed than a pass time for me ever since. I also managed to find some amazing second hand clothes. In the last 2 years since completing this challenge, I have bought a number of hugh quality pieces of clothing from ethical clothing shop. However it is easy to slip back into bad habits over time and I don’t feel there is anything new that I need at the moment so hopefully it won’t even be too much of a  challenge. For the occasional treat, I can always buy second hand or vintage. I also have another sustainability challenge/new years resolution planned but more about that in another post.

Are you making  any new years resolutions to shop more sustainably in 2018?

Happy New Year, I hope that you have an amazing 2018!

With warmest wishes


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No New Clothes – Family Celebrations and Christmas Parties

vintage dress

The run up to Christmas is always a busy time socially but this year it is especially so for me with some big family birthday celebrations as well as the usual Christmas parties and gatherings. The perfect opportunity to get a bit dressed up but as usual this year I attempting to buy no new clothes for the party season and instead make do with what I have got!

Last weekend was a black tie birthday party. I deliberated over whether to treat myself a new dress but in the end decided I really didn’t need anything new. I have quite a few party dresses and the sad reality is that they don’t get worn nearly as much as they could. So I opted for this dress bought from a vintage fair in Bath quite a few years ago. It has a lace top with a neutral coloured net lining and a chiffon skirt. Last time I wore it was a tad on the snug side, so I was pleased and relieved to find that it fitted much more comfortably this time allowing a little breathing space after a three course meal and wine. The earrings were also from a vintage shop although looked like they had never been worn as they were in the original packaging.

This weekend has been busy too with a works Christmas meal on Friday and a family birthday lunch at the Celtic Manor on Sunday. For the works night out comfort and warmth always has to be an important consideration as I have to get the train there and back. I also had very little time to get ready after work and didn’t want to miss out on the pre dinner drinks. I opted for a safe option of my navy SkunkFunk dress with thick tights and my TOMS boots, layered with a jersey Nancy Dee jacket and dressed it up a bit with statement necklace by Nomads which you can see here worn with a summery dress.

Today, for the family meal I wore this dress from M&S, again with my trusty Nancy Dee jacket again and a vintage handbag given to me by my Grandma.

So that is it for partying and socialising until next weekend. So far I am making the most of the clothes that I have in my wardrobe and managing not to splash out on anything extra.

What do you have planned for the party season ahead?

With warmest wishes


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SkunkFunk Again!

skunkfunk dress

Dress – SkunkFunk
Scarf – SkunkFunk
Leggings – People Tree
Trainers – Veja

SkunkFunk dresses seem to be becoming pretty much a wardrobe staple lately. I can’t lie,I love the brand, the style of clothes just seem to work for me. This navy dress was one of my latest purchases. The style works for so may situations including work, casual or nights out.Despite it being summer, I layered up the dress with leggings as it was a bit cold to go bare legged. The scarf is also from SkunkFunk and the floral trainers from veja, both were treats bought with my birthday money back on April.

For those that used to follow this blog, you may have noticed that I haven’t posted much lately, so here come the excuses…

Work- manic
Children’s social lives – crazy
8 excercise classes a week – exhausting but fun
Charity/ voluntary commitments – full on
Time for blogging – nil

As ever life is a juggling act, that is the way I like it to be! But I am hoping that over the coming months, I will be able to find time to post a bit more often and spend a little bit of time finding out more about the latest ethical and sustainable fashion.

I have a bit of holiday booked this week and I will be dedicating my time to a bit of a clear out of the vast amount of clothing and shoes that I have been hoarding. It must be nearly 5 years since I stopped running my own business from home and much of the clothing I used to wear doesn’t really work for me any more as I spend most of my time in office clothes and gym kit. I will be holding onto my really favourite pieces of vintage but I thought it would be good to redonate any items to charity that just aren’t getting worn.

Do you hoard clothes or gte rid of anything you don’t wear immediately? I like to try and strike a balance between making good use and getting the most wear out of the clothes I buy, be they new from ethical and sustainable brands or second hand. But I think there comes a time when life needs simplifying a little and clothes that are not been worn to be released so that someone else can wear and enjoy them.

I hope that you are having a lovely weekend!

With Warmest wishes


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5 Ethical Fashion Brands to Check out in 2017

ethical brands for 2017
I am wearing:
Organic cotton dress – Annie Greenabelle
Organic cotton leggings – Braintree 
Shoes – TOMS
Necklace – MADE at ASOS
Jacket – vintage upcycled

All items listed have ethical and/ or sustainable credentials (some links are affiliate)!

Happy New Year!

I hope that you had a lovely Christmas and are looking forward to the year ahead. I had a lovely Christmas break, starting with a busy Christmas lunch at my house for 9 and ending with a really relaxing break in Newquay for New Year. I thought I would start off the new year with a little round up of some of my favourite brands at the moment. If you are making it your new years resolution to shop more ethically, I have personally bought and worn clothes from the brands over the last few years and really love them for their design and quality as well as their commitment to making a positive difference in the world.

Braintree Clothing

Braintree is a slow fashion brand making clothes thoughtfully and ethically whilst minimalising their impact on the environment. They use soft and comfortable sustainable fabrics like hemp and organic cotton and make clothes to last. Their mantra, Wear m, love me, mend me, pass me on. I am a big fan of the leggings at Braintree as well as their lovely prints and cosy colourful socks.

Earth Kind Originals

Based in Cornwall, EKO have some lovely simple and flattering styles which are perfect for relaxing in on the weekend. I have 2 different organic cotton dresses from EKO which I wear all the time because they are so lovely to wear.

Nomads

Nomads clothes feature beautiful intricate designs, prints and embroidery which are a result of their policy for creating ethical fashion using traditional and artisan handmade techniques. The necklace from Nomads pictured above was a Christmas present from my mum and just one of the lovely items that I own from this brand.

TOMS shoes

I have struggled to find a stylish, hardwearing and affordable pair of boots for work recently. TOMS saved the day though when I found the perfect pair. They have now diversified from their original range of Alpargatas and stock a wide range of footwear including trainers and sandals. TOMS are dedicated to improving lives with each purchase helping to provide shoes, sight, water and safer birth services to people in need around the world.

What brands are you loving for 2017?

With warmest wishes


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A Woodstock Party

Woodstock Party Outfit

Vintage dress – Etsy
Boots – Minnetonka
Watch – Jord

Last weekend I had a Woodstock themed party (a belated 40th birthday celebration).I took the opportunity to invest in a vintage dress, that I know I will wear again lots in the future, to wear with my Minnetonka boots that Mr S bought for my birthday.

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The invites described the dress code as sixties, hippy and festival inspired giving guests the opportunity to dress up as much or as little as they liked. It was great to see the colourful  and creative outfits that everyone came up with. Here is me with my sister.

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My birthday was in April but I decided to wait until May for my party in the hope that the weather would be better. I was so glad that I did, despite a few showers in the afternoon, the weather was amazing! Which is great as a key part of my Woodstock party plans, involved decorating the garden. I had been planning for quite a few months checking out Pinterest for ways to try and create my own mini Woodstock in the back garden. This floral CND sign was made by my daughter using a cardboard template that she cut out covered with tissue paper flowers that she made.

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We put up a small marquee/ tent in the garden and hung printed sheets which I bought from Amazon. These sheets will be reused for picnic blankets when we go campervanning.

Woodstock party

I created a meditation area using a printed sheet and old campervan cushions with a sign drawn by the children on an old chalk board.

Woodstock Party

I invested in some some love crocheted blankets to cover our old plastic chairs and for guests to wrap up in later in the evening if it got cold. After the party, these will also be moved to the campervan ready for chilly summer evenings camping and festivals.

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I ordered some reproduction Woodstock posters from Amazon to pin to the fence. For music, I found a local (Bristol) singer/ acoustic guitar player to play music from the sixties and seventies. He was amazing and really gave the party a great atmosphere with guests (including me) dancing and playing the tambourine. I also put together a Spotify playlist with lots of Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, The Who, The Kinks, which was fun to make.

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The Wooden hand furniture was a birthday pressy for Mr S bought at a festival last year. The garden was also decorated with numerous fairy lights, lanterns and candles which looked amazing once it got dark. Unfortunately I didn’t really manage to capture this on camera.

sign for woodstock party

I ordered this sign from Amazon. It is now a permanenet fixture on our garden fence.

sweets

For food we had a BBQ followed by salt caramel profiteroles, strawberries and mini cupcakes. I also put out some retro sweets incase anyone got a sugar craving later on.

Wo

I had an amazing night! Probably drunk too much and unfortunately the time seemed to fly by too quickly. I have lots of lovely photos and happy memories though.

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Mr S bought me this forty sign  for my birthday for everyone to sign.

Admitedly the clear up operation was fairly extensive but we managed to get cleared up by lunch time Sunday, just before the next group of friends and family arrived for another BBQ to make sure we used up all of the leftover food. I won’t lie, it has been a tough week at work, after such a busy and fun weekend.

I hope that you have been enjoying the amazing weather.  What have you been up to?

With warmest wishes


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Vintage Fashion – Seventies Style

Oxfam Decades of Styleseventies maxi dress

Vintage dress – ebay
Vintage jacket – Rockit Vintage
Shoes – high street

I haven’t had much of an opportunity to wear my vintage clothes lately as I only seem to go out to work and exercise classes. But I have finally finished my CIM diploma in digital marketing and the building work and constant tidying of the house that it caused is also finished. I am hoping to start getting out and about a bit more in the spring giving me the chance to wear my vintage clothes again. I already have a few trips planned to vintage fairs as well as a weekend away.

I am also organising a birthday party for my 40th with a Woodstock theme so have been thinking about sixties/ seventies style and what to wear. I decided to try this vintage seventies dress on again although I don’t think it is my final choice of outfit. I think I will opt for something slightly more hippyish. I am also entering the Oxfam Fashion decades of vintage fashion and style competition.

I want to decorate the garden like a festival so will be spending the next few months scouring amazon and charity shops for the things I need. As it can get a little cold in the evening and I wanted to cover up the plastic chairs in the garden, I have invested in some crochet / knitted blankets from Oxfam. I have been obsessed with these blankets for a while and finally have an excuse to buy some. With Oxfam doing such great work, I am also always pleased to buy from them. After the party,they will also be great for the campervan and wrapping up on a cold evening. If you have any other ideas for a Woodstock themed party, please leave a comment below.

So now I have finally got my life back, I hope to be doing at lot more blogging as well as getting back up to date with Ethical Fashion Bloggers. Apologies to anyone who has emailed and I haven’t replied but I will do very soon.

Here are a few of my recent instagrams.

lady 5

Lady is looking fairly unimpressed by the building works!

extension

Finally the new extension is finished

mothers day

Mother’s Day treats

What have you been up to lately and what plans do you have for the spring?

With warmest wishes


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Festival Fashion

festival fashiion - ethical brands

Top – Braintree clothing
Scarf – Braintree clothing
Shorts – high street
Handbag – Owen Barry
Shoes – ethletic

I am not really a big fan of the term ‘festival fashion’ which implies that there is a whole category of fashion dedicated to that once or twice occasion of attending a  festival. On the other hand, I am a big fan of many of the features associated with festivals including hats, fringing and quirky styles and am quite happy to wear my kind of own version of festival fashion all summer long.

This year we have been to Truck Festival in Oxfordshire, a smaller boutique festival that seemed to have grown massively since last year. We saw Basement Jaxx, who I love and Clean Bandit amongst others but for me going to festivals is about having a good time and soaking up the atmosphere than pushing my way to the front to see the main acts, which I can’t really be bothered with. With also went to V-Dub Island which is a festival for those with a love of VW cars and campervans but also featured some really good music and some vintage stalls. Whilst the weather for Truck festival was amazing, at V-Dub Island, we found ourselves knee deep in mud and on the Sunday decided to leave a day early for another campsite on the Isle of Wight for  fear of getting campervan and caravan stuck in the mud.

sustainable fashion IOW

Dress – Annie Greenabelle
Leggings – People Tree
Scarf – really old (from the high street)
Jacket – vintage

The wind and wet wreaked havoc with my  hair but we weren’t going to let it get us down, there was nothing to do but head for the pub. A delicious meal and a few beers later and  the world felt like a much happier place. The sun did come out though and we ventured to the local monkey sanctuary the next morning followed by an afternoon and evening in Ryde. We had a delicious meal at the Three Buoys in Ryde with pre dinner cocktails sat out on the balcony.

Unfortunately I haven’t had much time for posting over the summer with festivals and the assignment that I have been working for my CIM Diploma. I hope to have the final copy finished today, which will be a relief as I am now a third of the way through the course. Looking forward to catching up on my favourite blogs very soon.

What have you been up to over the summer? Have you been to any festivals?

With warmest wishes

Vintage Nostalgia 2015

Vintage Nostalgia

Last weekend, we headed over to Vintage Nostalgia in Stockton. We went to the festival last year and really enjoyed it and this year was great too. It seemed to have grown a bit since last year but still had the same relaxed and friendly vibe. I looking at the old cars, listening to the music and browsing the vintage fashion and homeware stalls. Most of all though, I love getting dressed up and checking out all the amazing outfits that everyone wears. Although it is not compulsory to get dressed up and not everyone does, there are some pretty good opportunities for people (and vintage style) watching.

As with any event of this kind, the weather can make or break it. As much as I love wearing a ladylike fifties dress, after getting soaking wet in the rain (camping) on Friday, I just couldn’t get warm. I opted for a seventies vintage poncho (which I treated myself to from Etsy a few months back), worn with my trusty modern day (via Oxfam) jeggings. In the evening I swapped the poncho for another warmer knitted version (again seventies).

DSCN4258 (6)On Saturday, the sun came out and I braved it and wore a vintage dress which I have had for quite a few years (fifties or maybe sixties I think!). I added a red belt from a clothes swap a few years ago, a vintage yellow bag that I picked up in a charity shop a few years back and my Nancy Dee jacket for a little extra warmth. Unfortuntely muddy fields and heels don’t really go, so I wore my Ethletic shoes. The outfit felt perfect for sitting in the sunshine sipping pimms!

Unfortuntely, the lovely weather didn’t last and by 6pm, a very cold wind forced me to revert back to jeans and a hoody layered with just about everything that I could find to wear in the campervan. I love the style of the fifties but I don’t know how they coped with the this kind of weather in the summer! I was sorry I didn’t bring my faux fur coat to keep me warm, although it wouldn’t have been much good in the rain.

We had a lovely weekend, but not sure I have been so pleased to get back to my nice warm bed!

What did you get up to at the weekend? Did you manage to enjoy the little bit of sunshine?

With warmest wishes

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The Shift Dress – Thrifty Thursday

shift dress (2)

I wanted to dedicate this weeks thrifty Thursday to the humble shift dress. I have a number of different shift dress and being quite short with out much of waist, the style always works well for me. The shift dress pictured above (the picture was taken in 2011 but I have been wearing the exact same shift dress today) cost me around £10. Not bad for a dress that I wear so regularly. As shift dresses are such a classic style, they are not usually difficult to pick up in  a charity shop.

I find a plain colour is perfect for showing off my favourite accessories including statement necklaces and scarves. I also love a patterned shift for a brighter look for the evening or worn with a jacket for work.

Oxfam Fashion just happen to have a lovely selection of shift dresses at extremely thrifty prices. Here are my faves:

Reiss Shift Dress
Reiss Cream Ivory Shift Dress – Size 12/14

Floral Shift Dress
Floral Shift Dress – 12/14

Vintage lace shift dress
Vintage Handmade Lace Dress (1960s)

Vintage Betty Barclay Dress
Vintage Betty Barclay Shift Dress

debut black dress
Black Shift Dress – size 12

navy and white shift dress
Navy and White Shift Dress – Size 12
fluorescent floral shift dress
Fluroescent Floral Shift – Size 12

What do you think of shift dresses? do you wear them?

I hope that you are having a good week? Not long to go until the weekend, I am so ready for it!

With warmest wishes

Heart Prints – Thrifty Thursday Valentines Special

If you can’t wear a cute heart print outfit on Valentines Day then when can you wear one? But actually, I think heart prints are pretty classic and easy to wear making them a great find in a charity shop any time of the year. Here are just a few of the lovelies that I have spotted in the Oxfam online shop.

Not only is charity shopping really thrifty with many of these lovely pieces costing less than a tenner but shopping in Oxfam also helps to reduces clothes waste, has much less of an impact on our beautiful world than buying new and helps a very worthwhile charity at the same time, it is just about the ultimate in guilt free shopping! In case you are worried that your order won’t fit or suit you, they also have a 21 day return policy(except wedding dresses or overseas returns), which makes it pretty to easy to shop with them.
Heart print shortsHeart Print Shorts by River Island – Size 12

Heart trousers
Vintage Heart Trousers by Richard Shops – Size 28″

hearts 4Red and Gold Heart Blouse Size 12

heart print top
Black and Red Top by M & S Size 8

blue Blue knee Length Dress by Next – size 14

skater dress
Skater Dress by Tofu Size 8

If none of these pieces take your fancy, why not try updating something that you no longer wear with some DIY upcycling. I love this tutorial for a DIY ripped heart tshirt or this DIY heart on your sleeve projector check out this very cute heart chain stitch for embellishing just about anything.

Hearts, how will you be wearing yours for Valentines Day? on your sleeve perhaps? Whatever you do, have a lovely time.

With warmest wishes