Belfast-based, clothes-loving, shopping-obsessed, mum of 3. Wearable fashion on a budget for busy women

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

School Uniforms from Next

A big shout out to the team at Next for clothing my girls this year from head to toe in their school uniform and I know I'm biased, but they do look pretty cute:
I shared exactly what I ordered on this blog post today it's all about seeing them looking the smartest they'll look all year! Even as I type, there's a stain on one of the cardigans from a post-school milkshake treat.

Quality wise, I'm pleased with it all...I think the skirt and pinafore are the best quality in uniform I've ever bought on the high street. But the stars of the entire outfit are the shoes! Lovely fit, leather lined and according to the girls 'super comfy' - no sore heels or toes after a long day at school.
Size-wise, my girls are taller than average almost 7 year-olds so I ordered Age 8 in everything. The only item that seemed large is the pinafore - it's quite wide - so we could have managed with an Age 7. Everything else fits with just enough room for a full school year of growth.

The Next School Uniform range for boys and girls is available on the links and remember that there is next day delivery on everything that's in stock - all for just £3.99. Perfect for any last minute additions or when one of your kids invariably comes home having mislaid a jumper or as happened to us 2 years ago, shoes.....yes, he lost his shoes!!!! Don't want to dwell on it for too was an expensive September.

Finishing with my back to school outfit...
Top - Darling (used to be a dress! See the post where it was chopped here)
Jeans - Gap Outlet
Jacket - Dunnes (8 years old)
Leather Ballet Pumps - Shoe Therapy (blog on these v soon!)
Long Brushed Silver Necklace - SGS Shop

And it was my going to the hairdressers outfit too. It's been almost 10 weeks since I had my hair cut and coloured so I really enjoyed my 2 hours catching up with Karen at Rogue in Belfast. No big change on the hair front...just a good tidy up and TONS of grey coverage going on :)

Disclaimer - Next provided the girls' school uniforms (shirts/pinafore/skirt/cardigans/socks/shoes) free of charge but I was not paid to write this blog post and all the words are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog.


Monday, 31 August 2015

Recycling Fashion

Over the past week, I've had a bit of recycled fashion come my way via a couple of channels. Firstly, Joanna over at Poppy's Style has been selling off her unwanted stuff and I also hit the jackpot in the Barnardos charity shop in Limavady (random, I know...we were there on a mid-week break!)

So first up, this top came from the charity shop - one of those patterns and colours that catches your eye. I knew with the nude colour going through it that I could style it with my nude sandals and bag for a night out...and I got the opportunity on Friday night at a surprise birthday party for my friend Nikki.
Top - M&S Limited Collection via Barnardos Retail
Jeans - Gap Outlet
Nude Sandals - Debenhams (past season)
Sparkle Bracelet - Gifted

and here is the bag I brought with me - a structured quilted bag in a neutral beige/grey colour with gold chain strap.
I actually bought a few of these in for the shop but the mark up and postage/packaging would have made them £35 so I didn't stock them in the end as it felt a bit expensive for a non leather bag. I did LOVE it on Friday night though and it got me wondering? In any case, this one is sold out but I have 2 in black if you're interested...
drop me a mail to

Then on Saturday, to help my hangover, the postman delivered a parcel from Joanna....all the way from the USA!! Now it had 4 items in it - the main one being this coat..had to take a picture straight away to share with Joanna
Coat - M&S (Past Season)
Monochrom Breton Top - Hush (AW14)
Jeans - Vero Moda
Ballet Pumps ℅ Shoe Therapy (blog to follow - these are AMAZING!)

Then there was this quilted sleeve knitted cardi that I'd tried on in M&S last year and then missed out on. Bingo!!
and the other 2 items were an M&S knitted biker cardigan in two colour ways - black/natural and natural/black (which I'm wearing below) It's perfect for this time of year so I wore that afternoon on a walk with the kids and onward to a BBQ with friends. Again it was just right for standing around on a coolish night.

Monochrome Biker Cardi - M&S (past season)
Jeans & Black Top - F&F at Tesco (past season)
Slip On Trainers - Dune London (past season)
Necklace - SGS Shop

There's something quite satisfying about being able to wear and love an item that has been previously loved and doubly so when you find items that are simply stunning and you admired when they were in stock. I'd love to hear about your great finds too if you want to share them in the comments.

Meanwhile, it's off to bed for me and I suspect quite a few mums....proper BACK TO SCHOOL tomorrow and I'm immediately heading to Rogue Hair after the school run to have the greys covered and the out of shape bob put back into shape. Will share it all on Instagram :)

Good luck with the return to routine again my friends,


Sunday, 30 August 2015

#MSFW - Marisota Shapeology Fashion Week - Occasionwear

This week it's Marisota's Shapeology Fashion Week featuring 5 key autumn/winter trends with a youtube trend catwalk video and supporting posts for each trend from some of your favourite bloggers...including me!

I was excited to be asked to be part of this event, hosted by Mark Heyes...basically, anything involving Mark Heyes is a no-brainer for me. When I met him back in June, I was struck by how passionate he is about incorporating trends into every woman's wardrobe, regardless of age or size.  He's worked closely with Marisota over a few seasons both in a stylist capacity and in the design of his own range - Ava.

The trend I chose to feature from the 5 was Occasionwear...simply because I wear casual stuff all the time on the blog so I thought it would be a nice change to wear something a bit glam. Also, I adored this Joanna Hope jumpsuit and knew it would be brilliant for choir gigs.
What a bonus to know it is made in the UK. It's that kind of jersey that just hangs beautifully and will never crease.
To put with the jumpsuit, I was sent this Joanna Hope Cluster Necklace - a great basic that will work with so many outfits:

I was also sent an oversized black glitter clutch - again another classic piece that's going to be used lots:
But the Sole Diva Plain Court Shoes were the star of the show for me because I struggle to find pointed courts that are comfy. These are an amazing fit and the heel height is perfect - they feel dressy but I can actually walk properly in them. Final bonus is that they have a rubber sole meaning that they're non slip. It's such a simple concept - why don't more shoe manufacturers do this?

And here I am with the entire outfit on
with nowhere to go on this occasion...but I'll be wearing it for my first BCGC concert in a couple of weeks. Size wise, I'm wearing a 12 in the jumpsuit and I would say it's very much true to size.

Do take a look at the Shapeology pages on the Maristota website, there's 15% off if you like the brand on Facebook and next day delivery is only £3.99. Also take a look at the trend videos to get Mark Heyes' take on the different trends - they're all on this link and the occasion wear one includes my outfit!

Disclaimer - I was sent this outfit free of charge by the team at Marisota but the words are all my own and I was not paid to write about it. Thanks for supporting the brands that support this blog.


Friday, 28 August 2015

#LittleLoves - Feeling Old, Flapjacks & Fish

It's been too long since I did a #LittleLoves post! Ever week, I get to Friday and do a face palm when I realise I've missed the boat. So I started this one 5 days in advance to be sure I got it ready on time for today! As usual, you can join up via Morgana's blog on this link.

I read two book in the last fortnight. The Sudden Departure of the Frasers is a great page turner, in the style of The Girl on the Train, with alternate chapters following the past and present. I finished it in 3 days and even enjoyed the ending, which is often so disappointing with these kinds of books.
The other one I flew through was Us by David Nicholls. A heartwarming and hilarious account of a couple whose son is about to leave home and whose marriage is wobbling. Again, it alternates between the present and the past to give background to the challenges they're having as a couple and manages to make you laugh out loud while also feeling a great sadness for what's happening. Thoroughly enjoyed it and I now want to visit Venice like you wouldn't believe.
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