Monday, 30 May 2016

3 WAYS TO WEAR A FLORAL DRESS: PART 1











For a while now, I’ve wanted to do a series of posts where I show 3 different ways to style a key piece of clothing, it was just a matter of finding the right piece. When I got this gorgeous floral dress from Topshop a couple of weeks ago, I knew this was what I wanted to use. A floral dress is an absolute staple for me for spring summer, as it is for so many. Obviously, florals for summer is as predictable as it gets, but hey, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it, or whatever the fashion equivalent of that saying is. The fact that floral prints are so popular this time of year is great as it means we’re offered up a whole variety of prints, colours, shapes and styles, so it’s a guarantee that you’ll be able to find a floral dress that’s right for you.

This Topshop dress is the newest addition to my floral dress collection (and I do have a fair few), and my god is it a beauty. Its official name is actually ‘Secret Garden Tea Dress’, which I thought was extremely apt and such a pretty name; a pretty name for a very pretty dress. Seeing the unusual chartreuse mustard colour and the beautiful print was love at first sight. Plus, I happen to love a tea dress. My favourite part though is the lovely ruffles at the plunging v-neckline which has a tie fastening. I actually had to sew the neckline up about an inch as it was just a little too low for me. Luckily, the ruffles act as the perfect camouflage to conceal my shockingly poor sewing skills (you would never believe I studied garment construction and sewing for 2 years as part of my degree).

What I really love about floral dresses, other than the general girlishness, is that there are endless styling possibilities. There are a million different ways you can wear them to make them work for you, your style and the occasion. So, with that in mind, I’m going to show you 3 of my favourite ways to style a floral summer dress.

This first look is a more on trend, original way to style a floral dress and it’s the way I personally like to wear dresses such as this. Pairing this dress with my knee high snake boots from Asos was actually the first look I thought of when I decided to do this series of posts, so I felt it was only right to feature it first. I always think these boots add some serious seventies sass to any outfit, so to take the seventies vibes even further I added my current favourite suede patchwork shoulder bag from Topshop. And of course I finished the look off with my must have accessory: a choker necklace.

I love mixing different prints and styles to create a look that’s more unexpected and a little different. I definitely don’t follow rules when it comes to fashion, I just wear what I want and what I think looks good. I happen to absolutely love this outfit combination and I really hope you do too.

I’m going to be posting the rest of this series later on this week. My 2nd look is going to be up on Wednesday, and the 3rd and final look will be up on Friday. If you don’t already, you can follow my blog on Bloglovin here and make sure you never miss a post.

Katie xx

Floral Tea Dress £42 Topshop
Knee High Boots £42 Asos
Patchwork Shoulder Bag no longer available Topshop (similar here)
Floral Lace Choker £3.99 Lamoda
Belt no longer available Asos (similar here)
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Sunday, 22 May 2016

BOOTS HAUL



Whenever I have some time to kill, you can pretty much guarantee I either make a bee-line for Starbucks or I head to the nearest Boots to have a mooch around. The latter is most certainly a dangerous choice, as there’s always something new I spot or there’s an offer on I can’t pass up, but never the less that is where I tend to go. My most recent trip to Boots resulted in me buying a few bits, some new and some must have favourites, and I thought I would share them with you. I actually haven’t done a haul type of blog post before, but I thought it would be a good way to share some of my new goodies and do a quick review of each. So, let’s get stuck in, shall we?

L’Oreal Paris Color Riche A L’Huile Nail Varnish in shade 224 Rose Ballet £4.99



I was so excited when L’Oreal launched this new range of nail varnish. They’re described as being L’Oreal’s first polish that is enriched with precious oils, offering intense colour and shine in one stroke. I don’t often pay too much attention to these kinds of claims from nail polishes, and instead I usually just go off the colours and see if any catch my eye. With this launch though, all of the colours looked gorgeous, and I’m not gonna lie, I really loved the packaging (yes, I judged them by the packaging. I’m shallow, I know!). It’s actually some of the best nail varnish packaging I’ve seen, and it looks very luxe and stylish. I also think the range of colours available is brilliant. I never buy more than one shade from a new brand or range in case I don’t like the formula, so I narrowed it down to this colour which is called Rose Ballet as I don’t have any other like it in my collection. It’s a very unique, beautiful shade of rose with a good amount of pink and brown to it. The formula is amazing, full of shine and vibrant opacity, with only one coat needed on some nails, or two thin coats on others. What I also really love about this polish is the brush. It has a very wide, quite round brush which makes application incredibly easy and quick, and it deposits a great amount of product. I’ve honestly used it non-stop since I bought it, and my manicure has been taking less time than it usually does with my other polishes. Plus, the wear time is excellent with minimal chipping. I’m so impressed with this polish, and I’m dying to get some more shades from the range to see if they perform as well as this one does.



Rimmel Exaggerate Eye Liner in shade 001 100% black £5.29

This right here is my go to liquid eye liner, an absolute must have make up product for me. I feel almost naked when I don’t have time to do my eye liner and I’m forced to step out without my cat flick. I’ve actually used this particular liner from Rimmel since I first started using liquid liner about 11 years ago. It is by no means perfect, and I do have some minor gripes with it such as some flaking and fall out (I hate those dreaded little black bits that fall under your eyes). But no matter how many other, and often more expensive liquid liners I try, they never end up being as good as this little drug store gem. The brush is just the right firmness to make for easy and steady application with a pointed tip for the precision needed at the inner corner and outer flick. I always have a spare one in the house for when it starts to get a bit too thick or it runs out as I cannot live without it. I will continue my search for the perfect liner, but by this point I don’t think I’ll find one that beats this. The price is a major bonus too as it’s only £5.29, and for the solid, long lasting black line it gives you can’t complain.



Maybelline Color Sensational Lip Liner in shade 140 Intense Pink £3.99

I was after a rose pink lip liner and this Color Sensational liner from Maybelline was exactly the shade I was looking for. It’s such a pretty colour. The formula is lovely too, it applies smoothly and easily, it has great precision to define the lip line, and the wear time is excellent.



Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Anti Chip Top Coat £5.99

I have tried so many top coats over the years I’ve lost count. I started using this Sally Hansen top coat about 6 or 7 months ago and I was immediately impressed. I’m impatient when it comes to waiting for my nails to dry, so a fast drying top coat is essential for me. This one actually claims to dry any nail colour in just 30 seconds, which seems like an exaggeration if you ask me. Don’t get me wrong it is definitely fast drying, but in 30 seconds? I don’t think so. It probably does dry it to a certain extent, but not to the point where you’re safe to actually use your hands without smudging and ruining all of your work. I like to leave them a good 5 minutes or so and even then I am extremely careful for as long as possible. It’s also an anti-chip top coat, which I do agree with as my manicures last a lot longer with this than any other top coat I’ve tried and there is certainly less chipping. It also gives amazing shine to my nails which is important to me. It‘s definitely the best top coat I’ve ever used and I’m already on my second bottle of it.



Batiste Heavenly Volume Dry Shampoo 400ml £6.49

I don’t think I could live without dry shampoo. Yes, I’m being dramatic, but seriously, I don’t know how I coped before I started using it. My hair is very fine and goes greasy too quickly, and I used to have to wash it every single day which drove me mad. Then I heard about trying talcum powder to help it last a little bit longer. It worked for an extra day, but let’s be honest it did not look good. I was fortunate though as I have blonde hair so I didn’t have the tell-tale white powder clearly visible for all to see. But then along came Batiste with their miracle in a bottle. As I said I have fine hair, and it’s constantly flat to my head, requiring a whole army of volumising products. Batiste’s volumising dry shampoo is therefore an absolute life saver for me as it does both in one; it refreshes my hair whilst adding some much needed volume.


Boots Blonde Hair Grips pack of 70 £2.50

I don’t know about you but I am forever having my hair grips magically disappear. It’s crazy how many have gone missing. Anyway, I was on my last couple of grips and desperately needed some more so I picked these Boots ones up. I really like them as they have a tighter grip which I need for my fine and often slippery hair. I got this pack of 70 grips for £2.50 which I thought was quite reasonable. Now let’s see how long I can keep them for.


So, there you have it, my latest buys from Boots. Be sure to let me know if you’ve tried any of these products as I’d love to know what you think.

Katie xx
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Thursday, 12 May 2016

NEW SNAKEY SHOES










I love shoes. Always have, always will. There’s just something about buying new shoes that makes me incredibly, ridiculously happy. There’s a line from the film In Her Shoes with Cameron Diaz and Toni Collette that’s always stuck with me. Toni Collette is explaining why she loves to buy shoes and has a whole closet full, and it’s very simple: shoes always fit. I can’t tell you how many clothes I’ve bought only to gain or lose weight and have them no longer fit me, not to mention all the things I’ve tried on that have looked a mess. So the promise of shoes always fitting and looking good is extremely comforting. Plus, for me, my shoes are often what I love choosing the most when putting together an outfit. They have the power to transform your outfit, to change the style and feel of it.

As with most people who love shoes, I constantly have a long list of all the shoes and boots I want. I have to admit that mine is a little out of control at the moment, there are so many gorgeous pairs around. Today’s outfit post, however, is focusing on the newest addition to my shoe collection. These were very high up on my wish list, and ever since I got my floral embroidered bomber jacket they went straight to the top. I kept imagining outfits I wanted to wear my jacket with and in most cases I wanted to have these shoes to finish the look off. I love a good pair of snakey shoes or boots, but it was the rose and pink colours used on these that made them stand out and pair perfectly with my pink and black jacket. Pink has definitely been very present in my wardrobe choices and fashion purchases as of late, so the shoes were a perfect fit. There’s so much I love about them that made them special. First up, they’re T-bar shoes, which is one of my favourite styles. They have a pointed toe, which I tend to go for as I like the kind of ladylike effect it gives. And finally, they have a low heel that makes them comfy and wearable for every day. So they’re ticking all the boxes for me.

As I said, I wanted these shoes primarily to go with my bomber jacket, so of course I had to wear it with the shoes the first time they went for an outing. I’m also wearing my new kick flares which I showed you last week, and a white, longline top in a sheer, printed knit that has blouson sleeves and lots of frills from Stitch & Pieces. I think the shoes pair really well with the outfit. They’re pretty shoes that are quite slim and dainty, and I like the contrast between them and the rest of my outfit which is very oversized, loose and casual.

Katie xx

Floral Embroidered Bomber Jacket £65 Asos (similar here, here and here)
White Longline Top £25 Stitch & Pieces
Kick Flares £25 Asos
Pointed Shoes £38 Asos
Lace Socks £4 Asos
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Friday, 6 May 2016

KICK FLARES AND GINGHAM










In case you haven’t already heard it from every fashion blogger and magazine, kick flares are the new denim you need in your wardrobe. This new shape looks to be inspired by the flared bell bottom jeans of the seventies, which is still a big trend in itself this season. The kick flare, however, is a much cooler take on this flared denim style due to its cropped length. Sitting anywhere between the ankle and the mid-calf, this new trend is much more flattering than you might think, and it’s extremely versatile.

The pair I’m wearing here are from Asos, and they’re made of a stretch twill denim which makes them unbelievably comfortable. I’ve talked about my struggles finding jeans that fit right in a previous post, so I’m usually quite reluctant to even bother trying unless I’m really in love with them and desperate to try. That was definitely the case with these. I’ve wanted a great pair of kick flares for the past couple of months and one day decided to go ahead and order these, and I am so happy I did. I was quite shocked to find that they actually fit me very well, thanks in part to the stretch the denim has (although fair warning, hair and fluff sticks to them like mad, not good when you have a dog). Other than the fact that the length on these seemed perfect and the flare shape wasn’t too exaggerated, I loved that they have a raw edge hem. This is very popular for cropped denim this season, regardless of whether or not the leg is flared, and it is something I wanted my kick flares to have. It just adds to the modernity of them and keeps them looking cool and casual.

I have seen so many people wearing this style of cropped flares, and each of them has worn them differently and all have looked good. There are so many ways you can style them. I personally like them kept casual with a top or t shirt. However, for a more tailored look, they look great with a crisp shirt or structured blazer. What drew me to this Asos pair in particular is that they have a figure flattering high waist, so they’re perfect to tuck your top into and add a belt for a stylish finish. There are endless styling possibilities.

I decided to pair mine with an oversized pink and white gingham top I got recently from I Love Friday, a brand I’ve never bought from before but with whom I have now fallen in love with. I have a real thing for gingham, not only because it makes me think of Dorothy’s adventures in the wonderful Land of Oz, but it also takes me back to when I was a little girl in primary school. For anyone in the UK, do you remember the little gingham school dresses you were allowed to wear to school in the spring and summer instead of your typical boring uniform? They were the cutest little dresses. I absolutely loved them and I would always be desperate for the warmer months to roll around so I could wear them again. Anyway, ever since then, I have loved gingham and always seem to be drawn right to it for the spring summer season. This beautiful top is appliqued with the prettiest little white flowers and has a lovely ruffled hem, making it adorably girly and too cute for me to resist.

I completed my outfit by adding some little black lace socks and my gorgeous block heeled glove shoes which I shared with you in this post. The cropped length of kick flares makes for all kinds of greatness as it allows your shoes to be on full display. Just like with clothing, there are so many choices for your footwear with these jeans. You could opt for boots, trainers, sandals, flats, or heels; any shoes would work. I recently wore them with some heeled ankle boots and they looked amazing. These kick flares are a great addition to my wardrobe and have given it an instant update.

Katie xx

Kick Flares £25 Asos
Gingham Oversized Top £40 I Love Friday
Block Heeled Shoes £35 Asos (similar herehere, here and here)
Lace Socks £4 Asos (also available in white here)
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© The Style Blossom

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