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Sunday, 31 August 2014

Rainy Day Breton Stripes With a Trench and Wellies

Sequinned Breton stripes, trench and wellies
I think most Brits have accepted that autumn has come early, and our August Bank Holiday Monday was a wet, dull affair. No great surprise, but it would have been nice to have had a few days of sun in August! On the bank holiday I went with a Breton top and trench combination (which always looks great with jeans and wellies) - you basically can't go wrong with this classic look as I doubt it'll ever date. Even though I have quite a collection of different Breton stripe tops now, I added a little sparkle with my prized possession: my Les Petites sequinned stripe sweater (also worn here). I bought it in Paris in May and you can still still buy it online (reduced to €109, or about £86), which actually made me quite excited for some reason. I have no idea why - I already own one?! Maybe I'm excited for you at the prospect of you being able to buy one in the sale ;)

Have you started to embrace autumn yet or are you in one of those places that continues with heat until Christmas (hello, Florida), and do you ever wear the Breton stripe/trench coat combo like me? What other classic combos do you wear? Do share in the comments!

Sequinned Breton stripes, trench and wellies
Sequinned Breton stripes and trench
Catherine x
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P.S. You may have missed last week's post about my newsletter launch - you can sign up here! The first one will go out on 2nd September and then fortnightly after that :-)

Trench: c/o Laura Ashley (similar), Sweater: Les Petites, Jeans: River Island, Boots: Wedge Wellies, Watch: c/o Olivia Burton, Eyelashes: Semi-permanent extensions (beautifully done by my talented niece!)

Linking up to: Visible Monday, Let It ShineShare in Style, Monday Mingle, Style SessionsTrend Spin Link-UpWhat I Wore Wednesday, Passion for Fashion FridayFriday's Fab Favourites

Friday, 29 August 2014

August's Musings Mondays, Helpful Humpdays and Photo Tips Fridays

Portrait Photo Tip: Photogrpah portraits during the golden hour
After nearly a whole month of posting my regular Monday, Wednesday and Friday posts on my Facebook page, I'm pleased to say they seem to be really popular with everyone! So here's my first round up of all the Musings Monday, Helpful Humpday and Photo Tips Friday posts in case you missed any. It also means that you can Pin these images if you wish (which of course you can’t do on Facebook - at least I don’t think you can).

Let me know if you’ve been following these posts and if you’ve found them interesting/useful - and if you have any ideas for future posts (Photo Tips Friday, for example) then mention that in your comment, too!

Attractiveness: Are today's 40+ women more attractive now than they were in their twenties?
Today's 40+ Women:
Is it just the fashions that make so many 40+ women look better now than they did in their 20s? Are we misled by the dated hair and make up of the 1980s/90s... or do we simply embrace a more youthful look these days? More...

The Anti-Bucket List: Things I've never done before
Things I've never done that it seems everyone else has - my "Anti Bucket List":
1. I've never seen a Harry Potter movie
2. I've never been to a hen [bachelorette] party - didn't even have one myself
3. I've never eaten a KFC
4. I never permed my hair in the 80s (I was the perfect age for it)

SMILE! Why do I think in my head I'm smiling for a photo, then the photographer says "smile"?!
Why in my head do I think I'm really, really smiling for a photo, then the photographer says "SMILE"?! I'm thinking that my face is looking more and more miserable as I'm getting older... does this happen to anyone else?

Stargazer lilies: Remove the pollen!
Stargazer lilies
They're beautiful but the pollen is EVIL! Cut them off as soon as the flower opens or your clothes will get covered in pollen if you brush against them. Best way to get rid of pollen if you do get it on your clothes? Don't touch it - carefully use a vacuum to suck it up.
PLUS they're toxic to cats so don't let your kitty near them! Read here >

Social Media Tip: Use just ONE profile pic across all your platforms - use just one avatar
Use just one profile pic (avatar) across ALL your social media platforms:
People need to recognise you from one place to the next!
Using six different pictures will make you look like six different people - and harder to get to know.
Ideally choose a clear head shot with strong graphic colours and shapes.

A smile and visible eyes (no sunglasses) tend to be more welcoming.
Top, top tip: Register your chosen avatar on so wherever you login or comment it'll be recognised and show your profile pic.

Blogging Tips: Create your own favicon and stand out from the crowd
Create your own Favicon
Want to create your own little Favicon (a tab icon) for your blog? It's quick, easy and instantly makes your blog look more like a brand!
1. Go to a favicon generator, e.g. to create a 16x16 .ico file
2. In Blogger, go to the Layout option (see below for Wordpress)
3. Click on 'Edit' in the Favicon box
4. Choose and save the .ico file you have just created... done!
DO NOTE that it can take a few hours to show up in Chrome - try clearing your cookies and cache on your browser. Your new favicon will show up in Bookmarks too which = instant branding! (Here's a "how to" for Wordpress blogs:

Tweetdeck: Why it's SO GOOD at helping you manage Twitter
Scheduling Tweets
It's SO easy with Tweetdeck, a free social media dashboard application to manage your Twitter account(s). You can see columns of your favourite hashtags all at the same time, you'll find Twitter chats easier and BEST OF ALL you can schedule Tweets - even with images. And lots more besides.

Instagram Photo Tip: Use wallpaper to create backgrounds for your accessories pictures
Instagram Photo Tip
Pictures of accessories or jewellery (or any small object) can be improved in 3 easy steps:
1. Take a large sheet of wallpaper or patterned paper that contrasts with or complements your object.
2. Lay the object down flat and photograph it from above (ensure you have lots of natural, diffused daylight).
3. In Instagram, crop the picture and add a filter... Ta-da!

Portrait Photo Tip: Photogrpah portraits during the golden hour
The Golden Hour
Photograph portraits during the golden hour (the hour before sunset or after sunrise) to get the softest, most flattering light. Wrinkles will disappear, skin will glow, and hair will look golden...!

Instagram Tips: Get create with your selfies
Get creative with your selfies:
- Experiment with layers upon layers of filters (top left)
- Take advantage of low sun and create solar flare (top right)
- Use black & white for a change and increase contrast (bottom right)
- Get creative with viewpoints, like lying on the floor (bottom left)

Photo Tip: Essentials required for everyday photography
Photography essentials:
1). Sunglasses - better than squinting in bright light
2). Spare charged camera battery
3). A UV or polarising filter on your lens also protects the lens from scratches

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

A Female Doctor Who Outfit (If I Were the New Doctor)

Neck bow tie, corduroy blazer, dark skinnies
After seeing the photos of this outfit, I now think (in retrospect) that this should be my Doctor Who outfit. In other words, if I were the next Doctor - yes, a female Doctor! - this is what I'd wear. A little bit Matt Smith (blazer), a little bit William Hartnell (neck bow tie), a little bit me (skinnies and pointed flats). Which is apt, considering I wore this the day we went out for a late afternoon meal then rushed back home to catch the first episode of the new series. And yes, I approve of the new Doctor ;)

I love masculine touches in an outfit now and then: a corduroy blazer and a crisp white shirt with a velvet neck bow tie; clubmaster style sunglasses (mine aren't Ray Ban unfortunately); dark denim with pointed flats to add a certain smartness (is that a word?) to the whole look. I had absolutely no intention of dressing the part that day... it just happened, and I happen to think it's very Whovian.

What about you - what would you wear if you were the new Doctor? Would you go for something masculine chic like me, or something more feminine? Where would your inspiration come from (previous Doctors, the catwalk, celebrities)? Do share in the comments, I'd love to know!

Black neck bow tie and corduroy
Neck bow tie, corduroy blazer, dark skinnies
Black neck bow tie and corduroy
Catherine x
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P.S. If you like this look, you can see all my outfits labelled 'masculine chic' right here!

Neck bow tie: Asos (this one from New Look is similar and in the sale!), Shirt: Asos, Blazer: Dorothy Perkins (very old), Jeans: Zalando, Shoes: Daniel Footwear, Bag: Debenhams, Sunglasses: Borrowed from the husband (here's the real thing by Ray Ban), Watch: Asos, Bracelets: New Look

Linking up to: Visible Monday, Let It ShineShare in Style, Monday Mingle, Style SessionsTrend Spin Link-UpWhat I Wore Wednesday, Passion for Fashion FridayFriday's Fab Favourites

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