Tag: shoes

Some Everything Five Pounds buys

I haven’t really done much sales shopping this year. OK, well I’ve done some, but it hasn’t all arrived yet so I can’t share my spoils with you.

What I can share is my most recent buys from Everything Five Pounds, which is a veritable treasure trove of bargains all year round, not just in sale season.

Starting with this absolute zingy beaut of a (faux) leather jacket. I know faux leather can be a minefield, often resembling shiny crap, but you’ll just have to trust me when I say this is super soft and squishy, looks really good quality, and is a beautiful colour which will brighten up milder winter days and work into spring and summer too.

Coral faux leather jacket

I think I was drawn to this dress because it reminds me of Christmas, which I realise is now a distant memory after a whole week back at work. I plan to wear it layered over a fine jersey polo neck jumper with ankle boots for office wear.

Zig zag green and red dress

Love love LOVE this casual jersey jacket, which not only has some blingy stars on the front, but some rather dandy retro style embroidery on the back. Perfect for throwing on with jeans and a t-shirt for those inbetweeny days of spring, which can’t be too far away, can they?

Talking of spring, how lovely and easy to wear is this pale blue boho blouse? Perfect with leggings or ankle length skinny jeans, I’ll be chucking on loads of silver jewellery and some sandals with brightly painted toenails.

Blue boho blouse

Lastly a couple of shoe purchases, because shoes are my favourite wardrobe items of all.

These 90s-esque platforms, which will be super stable thanks to the chunky heel and the buckled strap.

Platform dolly shoes

And, again thinking towards spring, these fringed lace up open toe espadrille ankle boots.

Fringed grey espadrilles

Anyway, because I had some Christmas money and each of these items only cost a fiver (clue’s in the name) it’s technically new stuff for FREE! And who can argue with that?

Have you been buying any sales bargains, or anything at all? I’m hoping my deliveries will arrive imminently, and then I can pick what’s staying, what’s going, and share some more buys with you.

Thanks, as always, for reading! x

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Tuesday Shoesday

Despite not having unpacked all of my shoes from when we moved back in…ahem…May (don’t judge me, we’re having building work done and repurposing rooms, and haven’t sorted all our storage yet), I have been buying them. Because shoes. Shoes are my “thing”. For some people it’s bags, or make up. Mine is shoes.

With no further ado, let me introduce my latest acquisitions!

Black & silver star trainers

Black and silver star trainers

A veritable bargain from Everything 5 Pounds, these cuties have silver metallic laces and are so mega comfortable, I can’t even tell you. I walked miles in them during our weekend in Whitby, climbing hills and steps and slopes galore. Much love for them, and even more for the price.

Pink suede studded buckle boots

Pink suede studded boots

These are from ebay, and again mega comfy. They’re lined in a soft, fluffy, almost fur like fabric for extra cosiness, which will be lovely in winter.

Turquoise pointed deep V heels

Turquoise suede shoes

Via ebay, they’ve had a lotta love over on instagram and in my house (the latter is just me cooing over them, though!) They’re so vibrant and look great with denim and yellow. Totally going to buy them in red, too.

Burgundy biker boots

Burgundy short biker boots

I wear this style of boots all year round, to toughen up girly dresses or with leggings and a big jumper, so they’ll get plenty of wear. I love this colour, I have a lot of stuff in this kind of hue in my wardrobe, so they’ll be most versatile.

Grey western buckle boots

Grey western buckle boots

Love the detail on the buckles on these boots. They’re a lovely warm grey colour, and will probably be easy to trash, so I’ll need to be a bit careful how and where I wear them.

Wine suede buckle boots

Wine studded suede boots

A contender for my favourites, I think. The colour! The buckles! The shininess! All the love.

Zebra ponyskin Chelsea boots

Next zebra print ankle boots

These had a lot of stroking at work, because they’re made of hairy ponyskin and therefore very tactile (also because anyone who complimented me on them got instructed to feel them, whether they liked it or not!)  The husband expressed deep and sincere jealousy that these were for me and not for him (he likes a statement shoe). Mega bargain – £75 reduced to £19 in Next!

What’s your thing? Are you a shoe lover? Bag lover? Everything lover? Let me know!

Thanks, as always, for reading. x

 

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What were you thinking part 2 (from an unexpected source!)

If you laughed / scratched your head in bewilderment at the sartorial faux pas by the Topshop designers, I raise your disbelief and give you Gucci.

Yes, Gucci. Renowned fashion house, stalwarts of style, designs desired all over the world.

Are these the ugliest shoes ever? (this is a semi rhetorical question, if you can find an uglier pair then please let me know).

Gucci have gone to the trouble of giving these horrors a pretty name (Ilse, in case you were wondering) but the fact that this is succeeded by the description of “sock sandal” makes Ilse the girl no-one wants to be associated with.

And whilst Topshop’s jeans could be described as throwaway fashion at £45 (not by me, I hasten to add), these sandals cost an eye watering $1200 (that’s approx. £1000 at current exchange rates).

Now, in order to cater to the masses shouldn’t the inner foot come in lots of different colours, in the same way as foundation shades? Say, for example, you were wearing them under jeans and you were dark skinned, would people think you’d had your own feet amputated and were wearing prosthetics? I have a feeling I’m over thinking this, but enquiring minds need to know.

On the plus side (and there has to be one, right?) the sock part can be removed, leaving just the shiny red sandals. Phew.

Gucci Ilse red sandal

Is this a designer look that will filter down to the high street? Expect to see sock sandals in a Primark near you soon!

Thanks, as always, for reading. x

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When the going gets tough…

…the tough go shopping.

Or so the saying goes.

I think the actual saying is “the tough get going” (or at least that’s what Billy Ocean sang – if that makes no sense to you then ask an older person. One that isn’t me). My personal fave is “the tough have a drink”. But that’s just my own mantra and not immortalised anywhere. It also works for when the going is easy, or the going is neutral.

That’s besides the point.

I haven’t actually been shopping, I couldn’t think of anything worse at the moment, but I have been slightly cheered by a parcel I ordered last week, before life fell apart all over again. In fact it’s been sitting unopened since before the weekend, and I’d actually forgotten what was in it.

Cue some smiley happy shoes.

I love shoes. They always fit, they never make you look fat, and they have the power to transform an outfit from just ok to “wow”. Bags I don’t really get. But shoes? Oh yes!

These are two bargain beauties from H&M.

Multicoloured lace up roman sandals – £9.99 (reduced from £24.99)

Buying sandals at this juncture in summer may seem an odd move, but I get a lot of wear out of sandals and this style is right up my alley (in fact it’s pretty much the only style I’ve bought this year). I love the multi colours, and the versatility and I know I won’t tire of them so they’ll be great to wear into next year as well.

Yellow suedette heels – £12.49 (reduced from £24.99)

These are less versatile and I will get less wear out of them, but fuck it! They’re a lovely bright colour and, despite looking like they might have the same effect on your toes as cheesewire, they’re surprisingly comfortable, because the toe strap is soft and padded and the slight platform offsets the heel (which is already lower than many of the pairs I own). The buckle sits slightly awkwardly on my ankle bone, but I can handle it, I’m hardcore 😉 I’m going to pair them with all shades of denim, dressed up or down, and maybe with a dress too if the occasion arises.

Are you a shoe monster? Hit me up!

Thanks, as always, for reading. x

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Blind optimism or sheer shoe-pidity?

That’s the question behind the fact I’m still buying summer sandals. I’m clinging on to summer for as long as I can and I intend on wearing sandals for as long as I can too.

Plus the fact that our summer holiday abroad is a late one this year means I have more opportunity to wear them than usual (spot the furious justification to myself and the husband, if he’s reading!)

Plus buying in the sales now means I’ll have new-ish stuff for early doors next year and therefore technically save myself some money on new season prices (already counting down to summer 2016!)

These were just £8 in the F&F sale, reduced from £28.Tesco wedges 2

Tesco wedges

Not worth not buying really (shoe lover’s logic). And I’ve already worn them yesterday so they’re already earning their keep. I love the contrast of colours, the chunky sole and the sporty styling, plus they’re heavy enough to not look “high summer” and therefore completely acceptable to wear in September.

What I’ve really been after, for a long long time, is a pair of lace up the leg sandals. I’ve long been a fan of things that lace up the leg (when I say things, I mean shoes, obvs); they’re just fab. Not entirely sure what it is about them, but I love them. They’re interesting, unusual and quirky.

I ordered a pair from Boohoo about a month ago (amongst my other Boohoo goodies which you can see here and here) and I had high hopes for them, but alas they were too wide for my skinny calves (which are more of a pain than you would imagine) and even tied as tight as could be they still gaped. So disappointing.

Ebay is my usual turn for anything a bit different – you can usually find everything on ebay. Most of the ones I saw were about £30 plus, which I know on a cost per wear basis would pay for themselves but I am somewhat overcommitted in the financial department at the mo (ahem) so what I really needed is much cheapness. Plus a lot of them are from Chinese sellers, and I’ve been stung before with sizes coming up small, and it usually costs as much to return something to China as it does to buy a small uninhabited island in the Pacific.

But then I stumbled on these (not my legs!)

Roman lace up sandals 2

Roman lace up sandals

For less than £12 they were worth a punt and I’m glad I took the risk. They fasten with a zip up the back but the laces are adjustable so I can tighten them to fit. Deffo coming to Italy with me, although I might look a bit like I’m in fancy dress when we go to the Roman ruins!

Anyone else still firmly in a summer mindset and refusing to give in?!

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Supermarket “style” from F&F (but sack the stylists)

I’m a fan of supermarket clothing – Tesco does some fine bits and pieces at a reasonable cost. They have great sales, and quite often full priced items will go into the sales very quickly. Delivery is free if you spend over £50, returns are also free (via Royal Mail), refunds are processed quickly and you earn Clubcard points on your purchases (which you can then spend on “free” food at restaurants like Café Rouge, Bella Italia and Zizzi).

One failing that comes to mind though is the styling. It really doesn’t make the most of the items in many cases, so it can be a case of take a risk, try it at home and maybe unearth a gem.

Following on from yesterday’s smugness around my new leopard print shoes, here are some more bargains that I bagged from the Tesco F&F sale.

Camo print half shirt dress (£12, reduced from £25)

Tesco camo dress       Tesco camo dress close up

Charcoal draped cardigan (£8, reduced from £16)

Tesco grey cardigan Tesco grey cardigan 2

Maxi shirt (£12, reduced from £18) – needless to say I will not be wearing mine like this!

Black maxi shirt

Black crochet sleeve shell top (£9 reduced from £16)

Tesco crochet blouse 2

Surely the worst styling on the whole of the site – palazzo pants that don’t touch the ground with slim heel shoes; no, no, NO! (£9 reduced from £18)

Tesco palazzo pants Tesco palazzo print

The palazzo pants and maxi shirt have 70s written all over them; dare I say that, if styled more appropriately, there’d be no need to put them in the sale…

Here’s my pick of the rest of the site – more stripes and leopard print amongst other things.

 Tesco peeptoe shoeboots

Tesco two part flats

Tesco grey fedora

I may just have to order that fedora…purely in the interests of research of course…

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For the love of leopard print

It is a well known fact amongst my family and friends that I LOVE leopard print. I have coats, hats, gloves, scarves, tops, dresses, skirts and footwear; as well as ornaments, a wine glass and some fluffy dice (these were bought as an ironic gift).

Here’s the wine glass. It’s hand painted and was a birthday present from some close friends (it looks better with wine in, obvs).

20150421_183736

I can never have enough leopard print, and I’m probably most partial to it in the shoe or boot variety.

My Dad and his wife bought these for me as a birthday gift a couple of years ago (photograph borrowed from ebay). The heels look monstrously high, but the height is offset by the big platform sole and they’re surprisingly easy to walk in. They make me feel like a giant, which I love! I specifically chose a tall husband so I’d never be restricted on heel height (oh, and because of the whole love thing as well, obvs again).

Leopard boots 3

Here are my two newest additions to the leopard print family.

Via ebay from the veritable bargain basement that is China – bargain price of £7.04 including shipping!

Leopard flat 3 Leopard flats 2

20150421_18340220150421_183351

And these beauties; a bargain for leather at £28 from F&F – even more of a bargain in the sale at £17. I’ll be wearing these with turned up jeans and one of yesterday’s striped tops.

Tesco leopard shoesTesco leopard close up

20150421_183200

20150421_183222  20150421_183208

They’re not the only sale bargains from F&F…more tomorrow…

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Dresscode: Casual

I start my new job tomorrow. And I have a problem.

Actually, I have multiple problems. I’ve been out of work for 3 weeks. That in itself is a huge change of pace. I’ve kept a routine and made sure I’ve been getting up early (although the odd afternoon nap may have crept in). But I’ve been eating when it suits me, doing what I want, reading blogs, reading books, sitting in the sun, planting my balcony boxes, visiting family. All stuff that will come to an abrupt end tomorrow.

Another problem is the travelling. My old job was a commute of 8 miles total per day. My new job is a 60 mile round trip. That means a complete change of morning routine, leaving home earlier, and getting home later. Couple that with the fact that husband has also changed jobs recently, working closer to home, and that means we will clash. He’ll be at home getting ready when I am. That has never happened, in the whole of our 10 year relationship. I foresee arguments!

And food! In my old job I was able to pop home for lunch. Working 30 miles away makes that absolutely impossible, so I’ll also have to factor in making and taking food with me.

As well as the usual “will I be what they expect?”, “will I be good at the job?”, “will I fit in?”, “where are the toilets?”, “how do I change the photocopier paper?” worries.

First world problems or what?!

Anyway, back to THE PROBLEM.

What to wear?????

Being vain and shallow and pathetically self conscious (in a good way, obvs), clothes are a massive part of being me and being confident. But I’ve been thrown a curve ball. My new workplace has a casual dresscode. WHAT??? I’ve never worked anywhere with a casual dresscode. I can’t crossover my work and non-work wardrobes. They have to stay separate. If I wear work shoes out of work it messes with my head. I can’t use a non work bag for work. I’ll have none of this “make your clothes work hard for you”. I don’t want double the wear for my money, I want to compartmentalise my life. Work clothes for work. Casual clothes for outside of work.

Of course, as has been pointed out to me, I don’t have to conform. But being the new girl (I use the term girl loosely; birth certificate says otherwise) is enough to set me apart, without turning up in my usual work attire of towering heels and dresses.

I’ve reached the conclusion that flat shoes are one of the differences between smart and casual. I’ve never EVER worn flat shoes for work. Apart from on casual days (the irony). And I can’t do ballet flats. As much as I like them on other people, they just make my feet look like boats (they’re not, they’re feet). I’m only a size 6, but they look wide and long and just weird. Plus I’m very much back into pointed shoes at the moment. But even before then, ick. Also, I’m slightly smaller than a 6, actually. I step out of most court shoes. So straps are generally a must for me to keep shoes on my feet.

These from Matalan fit the bill perfectly for me. Pointed, with ankle straps, and reduced to just £8 per pair.

Red flats Black flats

I’ve actually been wearing the black pair during my time off this week. Which defeats the object of work vs non work wardrobe. I like that they show a bit of toe cleavage (I know that’s a no-no for some people, but I’m a fan).

Usually I would have bought these for casual wear. And I like them for that purpose. But obviously, because of my own rules, I now have to make that decision between work or non-work.  Or get over my own own rules.

While I realise these have heels, I think these boots bridge the smart casual gap (I’m not sure I can do full on casual all the time, and I need to keep my calf muscles in practice so can’t wear flats all the time). £25.

Beige boots

And the other key to dress down is basic tops that I can add jewellery and scarves to for interest (grey £8 / khaki £7)

Grey pocket t-shirt Khaki top

And I suppose jeans will have to feature. This goes against everything I’ve ever known. This may be my one concession to keeping work and casual separate. ‘Cos jeans are just jeans.

I’ll be repurposing existing work clothes in a different way – crepe shift dresses with chunky biker boots, jersey midi skirts with flat sandals.

So what will I wear tomorrow? I have no bloody idea! And I’m trying to put off thinking about it until I really have to. Because that’s when the real world kicks in. Eek.

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Let’s have a (New) Look at sandals

All this sunny weather and feet prettifying is making me think about sandals (although do note, good people of Birmingham and beyond, that just because the sun shines it IS NOT summer, and the unusual yellow thing in the sky does not mean you should be wearing shorts and vests. Be patient, your time will come).

New Look seem to be quickest off the block of my usual suspects, with a veritable smorgasboard of sandal action.

Starting with animal print (because that’s always a good place to start), these are £24.99 each. Now I already have both zebra and leopard sandals, but they are looking a little tired, hmm…. Personally I wouldn’t pay that price for sandals (because I’m a cheapskate) but NL often have a discount code knocking around.

New Look zebra £24.99New Look leopard £24.99

Fringed, at £27.99 each – the lighter ones are spoilt (for me) by the colour of the studs

New look brown fringed - £27.99 New look black leather fringed - £27.99

These probably aren’t for every day (but then again, why not) and perhaps a bit too dainty for me, but they’re very pretty, especially the coral, at a more palletable £17.99 each.

New Look gem embellised £17.99 New Look gem 3 - £17.99 New Look gem 2 - £17.99

Again slightly dressier, trimmed with pearls, £22.99.

New look pearl £22.99

I like the hippy vibe of these; I’d probably go for the white and bright coloured ones, £24.99 each.

New Look 2 £24.99 New Look £24.99

Again very dainty, and probably not offering a lot of support, but a great price of £12.99 (leather too) and I love these colours (they also come in gold, white and pale tan).

New Look Leather plaited 3 - £12.99 New Look Leather plaited - £12.99 New Look Leather plaited 2 - £12.99

I’d be all over these, if only the trim was silver instead of gold (£24.99)

New look disk sandalds - £24.99

And finishing with my probably favourites, as I’m a fan of a more substantial chunky sandal to wear with summer dresses, and especially ankle detail.

These hippie beauties, at £34.99, cough splutter.

New look cuff - £34.99

Lace up, £22.99, offering slightly more coverage for less sunny days.

New Look lace up - £22.99

T-bar ankle strap, £15.99

New Look black t-bar £15.99

Roman gladiator, with leg laces, £22.99

New Look Black leather caged £22.99 New Look Black leather caged 2 £22.99

Traditional gladiator style with added suede tassel detail (the perfect match for my suede bag), AND silver hardware, hurrah! £29.99

New look suede tassel - £29.99

It’s slightly too early to be buying any yet, not knowing what my other fave stores will come up with, but I can definitely see the last pair as part of my summer wardrobe (and I’ve just remembered a New Look gift card I have, yay!)

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Hidden shopping gems – Matalan

As a great bargain lover who likes to own lots of things (I’m definitely quantity over quality) I find a lot of high street stores too expensive for what they are (I’m talking to you Topshop and Warehouse). I like to shop cheaply and regularly, as I’m fickle and get bored. As much as I love an item, I don’t like wearing the same things too often.

Matalan, for me, fits the bill perfectly. Their footwear especially is great value, there’s often a discount code to be found, and they do free online delivery if you spend over £50 (no online returns, unfortunately, but there are a couple of stores locally that are open late with plenty of free parking, so all good). I’ve bought some great stuff from Matalan over the years, and quite a bit of my work wardrobe is from there (not currently needed as I’m jobless, did I mention that?!) Easy to wash and wear crepe dresses, box tops, jersey midi pencil skirts and tailoring.

I popped in last week and they’re currently swapping over from winter to spring stock. Here are my picks from the latest online range.

Strappy heeled sandals – £15
Pebble (black and white tiny dots), black, coral and pale tan – I’m thinking these would be lovely with my new midi skirt

Matalan strappy sandal 2 £15 Matalan strappy sandal £15 Matalan strappy sandal 4 £15 Matalan strappy sandal 3 £15

Black high cork wedges – £20

These have a sport feel due to the white rubberised sole; I think I already have some that are too similar to justify a purchase though

Matalan cork wedge £20

Moving onto bags

White laser cut tote £20
Love the detail on the front; only spoilt for me by the gold hardware

Matalan laser cut bag £20

Lemon clutch – £8

This is so cute and quirky! Haven’t seen it IRL so not sure on the size or where I would use it, but it’s such a fun item for spring summer (and a total bargain too)

Matalan - Lemon Clutch £8

A couple of clothing items that caught my eye

Yellow jumper – £12

This is a supersoft knit, I’ve seen it in store. I’m picturing it with light blue denim for a laid back casual look

Matalan yellow jumper £12

Ripped jeans – £18

These jeans would fit the bill perfectly

Matalan ripped jeans £18

Floral cami – £7

A great bargain, again would look great dressed down with the above jeans and flat sandals, or dressed up with the jeans and the black strappy sandals above.

Matalan cami £7

Floral kimono – £14

I’ve seen this in store and the colours are more vibrant IRL while still being subtle; black with white, mint and beige. Unfortunately only currently available in petite online.

Matalan floral kimono £14

Jewellery – wowsers, quite a lot I like, I can feel an order coming on!

Filigree disk necklace – £12

Have to say I’d wait for this to go into the sale, I don’t spend too much on costume jewellery

Matalan disk necklace £12

Ear cuffs – £5 each

Love this look – not sure on the logistics of getting your hair tangled though?

Matalan leaf ear cuff £5 Matalan stone ear cuff £5

Black stone split band ring – £5, glass stone statement ring – £5, linked ring – £3, rhinestone double ring – £5

Matalan split band ring £5 Matalan green statement ring £5 Matalan linked ring £3 Matalan rhinestone ring £5

Double pearl bangle – £3

Matalan pearl bangle £3

With the sun shining and the lighter nights just around the corner it doesn’t feel like too long until we can ditch the boots and coats and start to embrace some lighter wear. And bargainous jewellery is always a pick me up, whatever the time of year!

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