Monday, 30 June 2014

Ways to Wear Boyfriend Jeans | With Neon Stripes & a Rock Tee

Neon pink stripes, rock tee, boyfriend jeans
If you want endless inspiration on ways to wear boyfriend jeans, this is the blog for you...! Once more I am wearing baggy denim because skinnies are just a bit too warm at this time of year. The UK rarely sees particularly hot temperatures, and a couple of weeks ago we went on holiday to Cornwall - it's always cooler down there, especially along the coast. These shots were taken up on top of the cliff (yes I braved the heights!) at Perranporth, and as you can see the view is breathtaking. We battled wind and bright sunshine - both a style blogger's nightmare ;)

I'm glad I took my neon striped blazer for a bit more warmth as it got quite chilly down on the beach; amazingly it was warmer up on top of the cliff. My long-sleeved Blondie tee funked up the jeans a bit, and the sandals that did me proud for a day walking round Paris were so comfy, even for a hike up a hill (they're grey, not black, now because of walking in the sand). This starts my outfit posts from my holiday in what was possibly the summer's best week of weather - be prepared for many more sunny day outfit posts!

Are you a fan of boyfriend jeans over skinnies in the summer? Or do you have temperatures so high that you just can't be dealing with denim full stop... do share in the comments!

Neon pink stripes, rock tee, boyfriend jeans
Oversized black cat eye sunglasses
Neon pink stripes, boyfriend jeans
Neon pink stripes, rock tee, boyfriend jeans
UK bloggers: Don't forget to enter my giveaway to win a £50 Zalando voucher - you have one more week!

£50 Zalando voucher giveaway
Catherine x
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Jacket: River Island (old), T-shirt: Surfdome, Jeans: La Redoute, Hat: Accessorize, Sandals: c/o Lulus, Sunglasses: c/o Lulus (similar), Bracelets: c/o La Redoute, Watch: c/o Olivia Burton

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Sunday, 29 June 2014

Summer Sales Picks | 14 Items Worn on the Blog Reduced in the Sales

Summer Sales Picks as Seen on Not Dressed As Lamb
The summer sales are in full swing - and that means I'm bringing you my Summer Sales Picks! Like I did in January, here's a post with some of the actual items I've worn on the blog that are still available online and now reduced in the sales, shown here with my outfit photos. Apologies if anything sells out (I also can't guarantee all sizes are available), but all info is correct at the time of writing (28/06/14).

Hope you find some bargains! Do you have your eye on any of the items ? Let me know in the comments if you end up buying any of them. Happy sale shopping!

La Redoute Embroidered Cotton Fleece Sweatshirt Black
1. La Redoute Embroidered Cotton Fleece Sweatshirt Black WAS £49.00 NOW £24.50
If you're afraid of colour but need to brighten up your wardrobe, this fail-safe black sweatshirt has all the embellishment you need - perfect for all year round.

La Redoute Crochet Ballet Pumps White
2. La Redoute Crochet Ballet Pumps White WAS £25.00 NOW £15.00
A crochet ballet pump is such a great idea for summer, keeping your feet nice and cool. Comfy as well as pretty. Also available in Black.

La Redoute Jacquard Heart Motif Sweater Pink
3. La Redoute Jacquard Heart Motif Sweater Pink WAS £39.00 NOW £19.50
This sweater has been really, really popular with you lovely lot. Pale pink is so pretty, the heart isn't too kitschy and it has lovely rolled detailing on the shoulders. It's a cotton/acrylic blend so washes really well and won't bobble.

Hobbs London Blue Seren Dress
4. Hobbs London Blue Seren Dress WAS £169.00 NOW £84.00 =SOLD OUT=
What can I say about this stunning dress? It's made of embroidered eyelets and comes with a separate slip (which you can just see) for modesty. I can guarantee with 100% certainty you will feel so elegant in this dress.

Laura Ashley Candy Orange Lace Sleeve Top
5. Laura Ashley Candy Orange Lace Sleeve Top WAS £65.00 NOW £32.00 =SOLD OUT=
A baseball-style top with lace sleeves in a gorgeous orangey-coral colour is summer perfection - the laces sleeves keep you really cool.

Zalando Codello Patterned Scarf Pink
6. Zalando Codello Patterned Scarf Pink WAS £25.00 NOW £21.00
It's silk, it has a gorgeous pattern, it makes a change from having a huge long scarf swathed around your neck. Beautiful colours, too.

Zalando Vince Camuto Canaday Peeptoe Heels Beige & Pink
7. Zalando Vince Camuto Canaday Peeptoe Heels Beige & Pink WAS £150.00 NOW £75.00
I'd had my eye on these heels for ages till I finally caved. I love them - neon pink and cork effect? How brilliant is that?!!

Zalando Vero Moda Doris Polka Dot Sweatshirt
8. Zalando Vero Moda Doris Polka Dot Sweatshirt WAS £26.00 (THEN £20.00) NOW £17.00!!
If you don't have a polka dot sweatshirt in your wardrobe, get this one. Now. Also available in Black/White Spot.

Daniel Maurice Beige Contrast Toe Cap Block Heel Flat
9. Daniel Maurice Beige Contrast Toe Cap Block Heel Flat WAS £149.00 NOW £89.00
These flats made me fall in love with the block heel trend, and they are unbelievably comfortable. I've worn them for a full day's sightseeing with no problems, and they have the power to allow me to wear skirts with flats - not an easy task where this heels lover is concerned. Also available in Black/Beige.

Fever Bloomsbury Pencil Dress Red
10. Fever Bloomsbury Pencil Dress Red WAS £89.99 NOW £62.99
These three looks are from the photo shoot of the Fever London model competition. This dress was a hit with everyone: a total bombshell of a dress in traffic-stopping red. Shaping underwear is advisable....! Also available in Black and Evergreen; available but not on sale are Sand (an off-white), Grey and Navy.

Fever Delphinium One Shoulder Chiffon Dress Duck Egg Blue
11. Fever Delphinium One Shoulder Chiffon Dress Duck Egg Blue WAS £89.99 NOW £62.99
Probably the ultimate bridesmaid dress - and now a total bargain (the colour is gorgeous). Also available in Nude, Cream, Navy and Merlot (deep red).

Fever Charlie Peter Pan Collar Top Ink/Cream
12. Fever Charlie Peter Pan Collar Top Ink/Cream WAS £49.99 NOW £24.99
One of my favourite looks from the Fever shoot: this top looks just as good with jeans as it does with skirts. A lovely floppy sheer fabric.

Great Plains Waterfall Garden Print Skirt
13. Great Plains Waterfall Garden Print Skirt WAS £50.00 (THEN £40.00) NOW £25.00!!
Perfect for summer and winter: in summer with bare legs (because of the white), and in winter with tights (because of the black). Very ladylike, and machine washable too.

Lotus Francesca White Leather Loafers
14. Lotus Francesca White Leather Loafers WAS £49.99 NOW £34.99
Perhaps the most comfortable pair of shoes I own - I can walk for miles in these and they won't rub or make my feet ache. Beautiful soft white leather and a funky contrasting sole. Also available in Metallic/Pink and Pewter/Baby Blue.


Friday, 27 June 2014

Pink Striped Vintage DVF Jumpsuit

DVF vintage striped jumpsuit
It may look like separates, but this is in fact a jumpsuit - a vintage DVF jumpsuit, no less. You can just see at the sides it's joined at the back, but with that clever tie-front it looks like a (very modest) crop top and trousers. It was gifted to me by The House of Pandora, the same vintage shop that lent me the tapestry coat and patterned shorts suit set I wore (and nearly wore, respectively) to London Fashion Week. Their selection is amazing - owner Louise has the best eye for fabulous vintage pieces and sources her stock from all over the world. If you want someone to take the work out of scouring the web for great vintage pieces for you, The House of Pandora is the place to go.

I make no apologies about the fact that I absolutely love this jumpsuit. I can understand it may not be to everyone's taste - it does look a little like pyjamas - but as regular readers know I'm past caring about what I 'should' be wearing at my age, or whether anyone thinks something flatters me or not... I love this jumpsuit and I'm gonna wear it! It was a hot day so it kept me lovely and cool, it was comfortable for a two hour journey in the car down to Cornwall, it's by Diane von Flippin' Fürstenberg - what's not to love...?

Do you still wear things that you know others may consider unflattering or age inappropriate? Have you ever had someone comment that you shouldn't be wearing something: how did you respond? Do share in the comments - and please please please take a moment to read Glenda's spot-on thoughts about the same subject :)

DVF vintage striped jumpsuit
DVF vintage striped jumpsuit
DVF vintage striped jumpsuit
DVF vintage striped jumpsuit
UK bloggers: Don't forget to enter my giveaway to win a £50 Zalando voucher!

£50 Zalando voucher giveaway
Catherine x
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Jumpsuit: c/o The House of Pandora, Shoes: New Look, Bag: Next, Sunglasses: c/o Lulus (similar), Necklace: c/o oNecklace, Ring: c/o kuka-me

Not on board with the jumpsuit trend yet? You might like these...

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Wednesday, 25 June 2014

The Queen's Hotel Cheltenham | A Luxury Weekend Break (Video) + Sightseeing Outfit

Red hair & a Panama hat
One of the things I enjoy most in life is the opportunity to explore places I've never visited before, so when I was offered the chance to spend a weekend at a Mercure hotel, I practically bit off the hand of the lovely PR chap that contacted me. Weekend hotel breaks are my most favourite thing ever, and I chose the Queen's Hotel in Cheltenham because a) I've never been there before, and b) I'm a sucker for culture and Regency architecture (hence why I love Bath so much). And to say that I absolutely loved both my weekend and the hotel would be the understatement of the year - so I've shared a few photos and a must-see video at the end of the post.

Firstly, the wallpaper: I'm sure you've already noticed it in the image above? It's the same one they have in the Houses of Parliament apparently. It adorns the entire staircase of this Georgian hotel and without doubt trumps every staircase of every other hotel I've ever stayed at. I can't talk about the rest of the hotel until I've waxed lyrical about the staircase... it's stunning. The photos below really don't do it justice, so make sure you play the video to get an idea of the scale of it (all my reactions are genuine, first-time reactions).

Weekend sightseeing outfit - boyfriend jeans & patterned blouse

The Queen's Hotel Cheltenham staircase
The Queen's Hotel Cheltenham staircase
Not wanting to sound like a blogger that only says nice things about a product or service - in this case a hotel - just for the sake of being nice, I honestly cannot fault this hotel in any way. There are so many personal "bests" I can attribute to the Queen's: the best staircase I've ever seen, the best (only?) four poster bed I've ever slept in, one of the best meals and the best service I've ever experienced in a UK restaurant.

A little bit about the hotel: it's very central, has parking for guests (normally chargeable but the barrier wasn't working when we went), and it's easy to get from the car park to reception, which is great when you have large bags to carry. The exterior is as grand as they come, like a miniature Buckingham palace (see my Instagram pictures below).

The staff were wonderful - exceptionally friendly and helpful, not a single unsmiling face amongst them. We stayed in the Queen Elizabeth suite which was huge (in fact bigger than the last flat I had in London, I'm not kidding), and it had massive, double aspect sash windows due to it being a corner room. Oh and a view over one of the local parks, the Imperial Gardens. All the usual facilities were provided - with extras like an espresso machine and an iron and ironing board (my saviour!) - and of a very high standard. The four poster bed you see below was so high we had to practically climb up into it; it was maybe just a little too comfortable... here was my only tiny, tiny issue. We realised in the morning the reason we'd been so hot in the night was because there was a duvet (of sorts) under the bedsheets as well - lovely and snuggly in the winter but not necessary when it's so mild. It should be removed long before the beginning of June...!

Weekend in Cheltenham - The Queen's Hotel, Wilson Gallery. Neptune's Fountain (via Instagram)
Top row, left to right: The stunning lobby of the Queen's, The Queen's Hotel exterior, Our hotel room's four poster bed. Middle row, left to right: The Wilson Art Gallery and Museum, The Wilson Café, Stained glass window in the museum. Bottom row, left to right: Mini picnic in Sandford Park, Vintage Routemaster buses, Neptune's Fountain.

So after checking in we spent the rest of the day exploring Cheltenham. It's just the right size for getting around on foot, and if you like grand Georgian buildings everywhere you look then this is the place for you. We went to the Wilson Café at the Art Gallery and had delicious burgers, but it was the meal in the evening at the restaurant that blew me away. As well as rillettes of ham and breads for starters, I had a perfect crème brûlée but! the masterpiece was the duck confit... it was so heavenly I had to stop myself going "ughhhh" Homer Simpson-style with every mouthful.

And here's something: the service from our waiter was the best I have ever, ever experienced in a UK restaurant. No exaggeration. It was the sort of semi-formal service where my chair was pulled out for me and my napkin was laid in my lap, we were addressed as Mr and Mrs Summers... you get the idea. However, he wasn't in the slightest bit condescending or out to make us feel uncomfortable - he was chatty and friendly and timed those "is everything okay with your meal" questions perfectly. Great service may be a given in countries like the US, but it can be a bit of a surprise in the UK. So thank you Queen's, he was an absolute star and made our meal especially memorable.

From Where I Stand outfit inspiration
An Instagram summary of the outfits I wore, from left to right: Pink brogues with olive skinnies, blue 1950s style embroidered eyelets dress, Hotel bathrobe and slippers (no outfit post for that one!), Dandelion blouse and yellow boyfriend jeans (this post's outfit).

We also enjoyed cocktails in the bar afterwards (now they could have gone on for much longer had we not forced ourselves to leave), and after a great breakfast in the morning - a choice of continental breakfast, meats and cheeses, muffins, pastries and fruit or of course a full cooked English - we checked out of the hotel as two very relaxed and happy campers. For an idea of what we got up to on the Sunday, do watch the video! This gives a great guide to a weekend in Cheltenham - both the Queen's hotel and things to do and see in the city. You mustn't miss it for the footage inside the hotel... it's the best way to get an idea of just how grand it is inside.


(At 01:35 you'll see a photo of and details about Edward Wilson, the Cheltenham-born doctor who died on the Scott of the Antarctic trip to the South Pole in 1912. You'll see me standing by his statue a bit later in the video, and the Cheltenham Art Gallery (in the photos above) was renamed The Wilson after him. Amazing fact: I found out he's exactly 100 years older than me... I love random facts like that)

So did I enjoy our stay at the hotel? Absolutely. Will we recommend it to others? Definitely. Many, many thanks to Mercure for offering us a fabulous stay at the Queen's. It was great to visit somewhere unknown-to-us and experience a beautiful hotel and impeccable service - top marks, and thank you.
Catherine x
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Blouse: c/o Lulus, Jeans: Asos, Panama hat: Tumi at Amazon, Belt: La Redoute, Shoes: c/o Daniel Footwear, Bag: Karen Millen

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I have written this post in collaboration with Mercure Hotels who offered me one night's accommodation for two with breakfast and dinner included. All content is original, however, and opinions are my own and 100% honest.
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