SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW (ft. Joanie Clothing)
Recently, a lot of my posts have featured Manchester vintage-inspired brand, Joanie Clothing – and for this, I make no apologies. I’ve finally found an affordable fashion brand that plays to the twee-loving side of my personal style and matches both vintage and modern pieces alike.
Even though I love wearing dresses, I’m finding myself drawn to Joanie Clothing’s cute and casual basics – which is quite unusual for me. Usually, you’ll find me throwing my money at dresses with quirky prints or detailed collars but it’s Joanie’s knitwear and denim basics that I’ve chosen to invest in. Which brings me nicely onto Joanie Clothing’s Sarah skirt.
(Previous posts featuring Joanie Clothing _ Joanie’s Wedding Photoshoot and A Little Birdie Told Me…)
Not that I needed to buy more denim, but it’s become the stalwart of my wardrobe (I even wear denim for work – a definite perk of working in a creative office) so buying another denim skirt feels more of an investment than overkill. With its scalloped edges, Joanie Clothing’s Sarah skirt looks like it was made to be paired with my latest eBay find- this beautiful embroidered vintage blouse.
It’s been a while since I’ve found a true vintage eBay gem and I found this one quite by accident. Since changing to an office-based job from a field-based assessor, I’ve had little spare time to pop in the north west’s charity shops. So, you won’t be surprised to hear that my finds have started to dwindle and I’ve turned to eBay for my out-of-hours fix of vintage hunting. It was whilst searching for Mexican style embroidery that I found this shirt. Complete with vibrant embroidered flowers, scalloped edging and an amazing 99p starting price, I knew I had to make it mine. Four bids later, I departed with the grand total of £4.60 and became the proud owner of another vintage piece.
It seemed like the perfect item to build an outfit around for Joanie Clothing’s ‘High Summer’ event held at The Vintage Beauty Parlour, Chorlton. Invited to view Joanie’s summer range, the event also promised hair and beauty make overs on the day from owner Bethany Davies and her fantastic team. As you can see, I opted for vintage curls teamed with subtle retro make-up.
As you may have seen from my Instagram stories taken on the day, I stumbled into vintage-inspired heaven and came out wanting the entirety of Joanie Clothing’s new summer range -it was inevitable, I guess. Let’s just say Meredith, Clarissa and Thelma are the sassiest girl gang about to enter my wardrobe array.
Have you seen what’s new at Joanie Clothing? What’s caught your eye?
Vintage embroidered shirt _ eBay // Sarah skirt _ Joanie Clothing // Bibi shoes _ Orla Kiely x Clarks // Tan handbag _ Brit Stitch // Watch _ Orla Kiely //
A LITTLE BIRDIE TOLD ME…
Have you ever reached a point where you feel you’re living life on repeat? Silencing the alarm only to wake and follow the same routine each day? Every day passing much the same with little to set each apart? Last month, I felt this way. I’d return home from work to spend time
blogging reviewing search engine ranking positions, noting how many unique visitors I’d had that day and thinking of search engine friendly titles. I decided to take a blogging break, which also turned into a social media hiatus, to spend time outside of work switching off. I spent evenings engrossed in mindless television programmes, shopping and buying new clothes, drinking coffee catching up with friends and decluttering our home to plan interior projects. In general, living a less digital life.
I simply took a step back to remind myself of what had driven me start this blog in the first place- way back in 2012 when professional blogging was almost unheard of and I was in the first few years of teaching. I missed a creative outlet, my journalism degree was going to waste and I wanted to document life with words. But most of all, I took a break to prove to myself that traffic, SEO and statistics have their place, but ultimately, writing content you enjoy is at the heart of a successful blog. It was the best decision I could have made.
It was during this time away, I realised that two years had passed since I left teaching. (If you’re new here and want to know the full story, here are the posts that explain it all : Leaving Teaching, Leaving Teaching One Year On) When you take time away to reflect, does it make you sentimental too? I realised how far I’d come and honestly, when I think of where I was at the start of the 2015,working 60+ hours a week teaching, to where I am now- I still struggle to get my head around how different the two careers are.
As some of you may know, in March I started my dream job as a senior social media executive. I said goodbye to my job as a social media assessor, and learners (sob) to join an exciting new company launching two fashion labels. The first being I Saw It First which saw me travel to Ibiza for their launch at Ocean Beach (the dream, I know) and LOTD which is coming soon (remember La Muralla Roja on Instagram? Wait until you see their first campaign shoot!)
Last month, I also travelled to Portugal and spent 10 days visiting different towns on the Algarve, crossing the border into Spain, as well as visiting Lisbon for 4 days. Medieval towns, fishing towns, beach resorts… we saw so many places, in such a short time! It’s been years since I vacationed in warmer climates, felt sand between my toes and enjoyed swimming in the sea.
I’m planning to write about this year’s travels in numerous posts: Lake Bled, Ljubljana, Zagreb, Calpe, Ibiza, Portugal…it’s safe to say, this year has been dominated by travel! I’m also planning to document the every day, which will see me branching out from personal style posts and return to the lifestyle blog Polkadot Pink once was. What do you say? Are you with me?
Outfit Details // Birdie bird print tea dress – Joanie Clothing (20% off with YAY20) // Pink Bibi heels – Orla Kiely x Clarks // Watch – Olivia Burton // Sunglasses – Orla Kiely //
INVESTMENT PIECES THE TRENCH COAT
With the changing of the clocks, it seems we’ve pressed fast forward into the peak of the spring season- with little time to prepare sunshine appropriate outfits. Snowdrops are last season’s news and Magnolias are ready to be admired; the latest darling of Instagram. Blessed with an extra hour of daylight, I, for one, am not complaining. For me, spring marks the return of outfits posts, lighter layers and an increased enthusiasm for life.
Although spring may be in bloom, the sunshine can be deceivingly cool so I’ve rarely left home without a light jacket: a classic trench coat has become a trusty ally when defending against the March chill. And, it was thanks to Jack Wills for reminding me of this hardworking wardrobe hero when they recently shared how to style women’s trench coats- a piece which not only offers style tips on how to wear investment pieces the trench coat in particular, but also explains its history and why it has become such a well-loved classic.
Now, regular readers will know that I’m unlikely to ever adopt a rolled jeans and sneakers style aesthetic (as much as I would love to, I find jeans uncomfortable and unflattering) but Breton? That’s a mere step away from nautical, and nautical is a style language I am fluent in. Like all keen linguists, I study the intricacies of its lexicon to learn which elements must be paired and where. So, in true Parisian style, who could omit a generous smearing of red alongside navy? Not me.
Throughout my twenties, I would dabble with the trends that I thought I should be wearing: flared, shapeless jeans, statement belts, denim mini skirts, halter neck tops, you name it! These pieces I returned to, but never felt comfortable wearing. Looking back, I wonder why I persevered for so long! Being in my thirties, I’m comfortable in my skin and know who I am (which is a completely different feeling to that in my twenties) so, I understand my personal style and the core pieces that I return to for longevity. I’m now confident to spend money on investment pieces the trench coat in particular, knowing I’ll wear them until they’re ready to be donated as rags. A trench coat will always be an investment piece to me.
This trench has been with me for almost four years now and unsurprisingly, it’s not the first time I’ve featured it on the blog. Do you remember this post from January 2016? Or this post from October 2013? Yes, this trench coat is still a key piece of mine and didn’t cost a lot, although I’d have happily paid more had I known how long it would last.
Susie of Old Fashioned Susie has a novel way of describing her investment pieces. In this post, she describes them as workers and explains how she wants the majority of her wardrobe to predominantly feature hard-working pieces. Well Susie- this trench coat is a grafter! My coat’s CV demonstrates years of experience and, as you can see from its history, it’s happy to work alongside a variety of statement prints in the workplace. I’ll happily provide a testimony to its good character!
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// Trench coat :: Primark // Nautical dress :: Bonsui via eBay // Sunglasses :: Orla Kiely // Black shoes :: Clarks x Orla Kiely // Watch :: Orla Kiely //
These images were taken in Liverpool’s Georgian Quarter, have you ever visited? It was during Saturday’s journey to the #LivBloggersIgnite event that I happened to stumble upon the quarter and discover the housing that was once built for Liverpool’s elite. I was charmed by its character and knew I’d return to shoot outfit photographs, little did I know it would be in less than 24 hours!
*Post produced in collaboration with brand. All opinions my own*
WHAT I WEAR TO GO THRIFTING
On Saturday, real-life BFF and I went on our first #SHOWMETHETHRIFT trip. We had hoped that this would kick start our new thrifting series and I hoped I’d be able to share some amazing second-hand finds from Southport’s charity shops. However, it wasn’t to be and I came away empty handed. So, with spring in the air, I thought I’d share what I wear to go thrifting.
What I wear to go thrifting doesn’t change too much from season to season. When I go thrifting, I like to feel comfortable but still presentable and true to my own personal style. You never know how many shops you’ll visit, or which cafe you’ll end up lunching in. There’s also the practicalities of not knowing if you’ll have to stretch up for that out of reach handbag, or bend over to see what’s hidden. So, I tend to stick to a tried and testing thrifting uniform of my wardrobe’s go-to pieces: a denim pinafore dress teamed with stripes.
Before Christmas, my collection of dresses had started to dwindle. I was encountering a lull in charity shop finds, so I turned to eBay to try my fail-safe search for ‘collared dresses’ or those with cute prints. I didn’t shun charity shops, but I was less enthusiastic. I visited my favourites and neglected those shops that had been less successful in the past while actively pursuing eBay.
Days before Christmas, I chanced upon this TOPSHOP collared pinafore style dress in the final seconds of auction. It was an impulse bid at £3.99, the opening and winning bid. Shortly after Christmas, the dress arrived and I instantly tried it on. It was snug, way too snug for comfort and I promptly disregarded it, whilst chiding myself for wasting £6.88 of my hard-earned PayPal money. Until February.
[pullquote width=”300″ float=”left”]When we feel the urge to shop, it is not because we are seeking new items, but that we are simply seeking inspiration. [/pullquote]
At the start of 2015, I challenged myself to ditch the high street for 100 days. Since this, the belief that we are seeking inspiration, not new clothes, has always stayed with me. It was a simple comment left on an Instagram post, but it taught me to try and explore what I already own before buying something new. Enter almost forgotten eBay pinafore dress. Post Christmas, post bloat, post start of Slimming World diet… the dress fits!
The best tip I could give anyone starting out on the thrifting journey is to mix old and new. Buy pieces that will stand the test of time or are true to your own personal style that you’ll be able to get your money’s worth from, whilst creating an outfit that feels new and fresh to you. This ASOS cat beret might be the most expensive beret I’ve ever bought, but it’s also the cutest.
Also new is this Flamingo pin, gifted to me by creator, Liz Harry, who I met at the Liverpool Winter Arts Market in November. Her stall was a feast of bright colours in a sea of Christmas colours which I featured on my Instagram. Since arriving through my letter box, her flamingo pin has sat waiting for a suitable outfit. I think this chambray pinafore is a worthy companion.
Outfit Details: Pinafore dress :: Topshop (via eBay) I Striped top :: Jennyfer (via eBay) I Pink coat :: Warehouse via Claire’s House charity I Cat beret :: ASOS I Flamingo pin :: c/o Liz Harry via Etsy I Lilac bag :: River Island I Polka dot tights :: F&F I Patent brogues :: F&F I
So, no bargains were found on Saturday’s thrifting trip to Southport, but next on our thrifting hit list is the wonderful Lake District town of Kendal. We can’t wait to share more of #SHOWMETHETHRIFT!
#SHOWMETHETHRIFT is a hashtag real-life BFF, Katie at Life on Vista, and I created to showcase our charity shop finds on Instagram. Our aim is to show you how being more sustainable can benefit you too, make personal style more exciting and encourage you to go out and see what you can find! Remember to #SHOWMETHETHRIFT on your posts so we can see what you found!
Linking up with: Rachel The Hat’s #Passion4Fashion I Vanity & Me’s ‘Celebrating Style’ I Not Dressed As Lamb’s #IWillWearWhatILike I
JOANIE’S WEDDING PHOTOSHOOT
Whether you’re a blushing bride-to-be, or a glamour seeking wedding guest, the recent launch of Joanie’s wedding range is music to any vintage loving girl’s ears. As I was invited to take part in Joanie’s wedding photoshoot to celebrate their new edit, I thought I’d share my behind the scenes diary.
Exploring Gawthorpe Hall in Mod Dolly Fashion Dress
Happy new year to you, lovely reader! Here we are once again, facing another new year with the best of intentions and, for some, plans of change. Although I’ve yet to set firm resolutions for 2017, at the start of last year, I encapsulated my vision for the year with one word: action. Boy, 2016 didn’t disappoint. So much so, I felt it changed me and my approach to life. Starting the year as I mean to go on, on New Year’s Day I visited the impressive Gawthorpe Hall in my favourite Mod Dolly Fashion dress.