My Favourite Jewellery Brands

My Favourite Jewellery Brands

Today I wanted to talk about something a little different here on the blog, jewellery. I have always loved jewellery and have always been the first to notice a lovely piece of jewellery out and about, however it is only in recent months that I have started to really utilise the accessory and wear the things that work best for me. I think when it comes to this accessory, a lot of us are very prone to sway towards items that others and more so what is deemed to be on trend. A lesson I have learnt is that jewellery should be a timeless edition to an outfit and something that should be a true reflection of you without going out of trend. If any of you have watched Riverdale on Netflix, you will know what I am talking about when I say that Veronica owns those pearls. It is a simple design, and a classic stone that normally you wouldn’t expect to see on someone so young. However, the simple accessory very much resembles her personality and now when you see her without them it definitely looks like something is off. This is the way I want to be with jewellery. I would like key pieces in my collection that compliment my style and I, as well as can be transitioned for many different reasons.

I thought that doing a blog post purely based on jewellery brands I love is something that is way overdue here, especially as it is a part of my love for fashion that is continuously growing.

I don’t have the funds in my life to spend a fortune every time I shop on extremely expensive jewellery, and if I am being honest, I don’t believe you need to. The first brand that I adore is Mint Velvet for their accessories and mainly jewellery. I have had countless pieces from them over the last year and can do nothing but rave about their quality, unique design and value for money. The earrings featured in this blog post are from Mint Velvet, in the silver and rose gold star design. I simple adore this design and have found them to be very versatile in my wardrobe. They can be worn with a simple top and hair up look for effect, or they can be worn with other accessories to add the ideal finishing touch to any look. If you are a fan of the star design that is very popular nowadays, you definitely need to check out Mint Velvet across all their stock.

My next favourite jewellery brand is probably my longest standing favourite, and it is the only brand I have ever loved the watches from. Olivia Burton is a brand that I got into many years ago when it was really very trendy to have one of their watches and they were probably one of the most instagrammed things for a while. I loved them straight away for their simplicity, intricate design and overall selection of colour tones, shapes and sizes. I have had many of their watches since the obsession began and can’t really picture myself ever wanted to try another brand again. The one featured in this post was a present from my boyfriend over three years ago, and the light pink toned strap with the gold makes this my usually every day go to. I absolutely love the design and look of it on my wrist and think that it really compliments my style to a tee. As with Mint Velvet, I think that Olivia Burton is such a good bet as they are all beautiful and great value for money.

Pandora is a brand that is obviously very much a trend and we all love because everyone has items from them, however I do think in the last year they have really stepped up their game and started to release a lot more jewellery that is unique to them. Some of their limited-edition ranges have just been to die for, and I am gutted that I didn’t manage to get my hands on a few. Nevertheless, I am very happy with my main Pandora piece, which is the classic charm bracelet. I know it is a bit of a cliché and something everyone has, but I love my bracelet. It goes with most of my wardrobe, can be put on for added depth to an outfit and most importantly the charms do remind me of big things in life that I have gone through. I don’t wear it every day as I want to keep those memories special, although when I do, I love it.

The next item is from Tiffany and Co and is the classic small ‘open-heart’ necklace. I chose this for my 21stpresent as I wanted something that could be worn every day, that goes with everything, can be easily layered and most importantly will sit above all my tops. Due to my operation scar, I am often very prone to choose tops that are high, so having a necklace that was shorter meant that it is still able to be seen. For me this necklace signifies so much more than a beautiful piece of jewellery, as it is something, I received for a day that was a big deal in my life and it is a constant reminder each day of my operation that I overcame. Things like this do make me realise how much people can underestimate the power of jewellery. I don’t yet have anything else from Tiffany and Co, however after sitting in one of the London stores swooning over everything, I am sure that in my life time that is going to change.

Shout out to the independent designers

Finally, after talking about a few larger brands, I would also like to make it very clear that a large percentage of jewellery in my collection is from independent designers that I have bought at times when I haven’t been looking. Holiday markets have always proved to be great for me, as well as small independent shops in small villages and towns. I choose to shop in a variety of different places for everything in my wardrobe, so think it is only fair to mention that I personally find some of my favourite original pieces do come from smaller businesses.

 

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I have not been paid to feature any brands, and all views and opinions are my own.

My Top Tips for Working from Home

My Top Tips for Working from Home

Images by Hana Dallimore Photography

I feel very lucky to be able to work from home a lot, with two days office based in my part time job and the others based at home running my social media business. Working from home is amazing, although I have learnt very quickly that it is by no means an easy ride, in fact I found it extremely difficult at the beginning. The main struggle I endured was managing to get into the right mind set for work and then remembering that it is time to stop working and then enjoy my down time. Getting the balance right is very difficult, as well as getting yourself into a strict routine and being able to properly stay in control of yourself and get the job done.

I think working from home is one of those things in life that if you don’t do it you cannot see any fault in it and then the moment it happens to you, you suddenly realise that it isn’t all it is set out to be.

Don’t get me wrong, there are so many things that I love about being able to work from home a lot, and if I’m being honest, I don’t think I would ever want to stop, but I did want to share a post on the topic. More so, I thought that if I was going to share a post about it, it would be based on my tips to getting your work done productively at home, and getting yourself into a proper routine, for the sake of your own sanity! These are all small things that I do, that have built up over time, that have just made working from home a hell of a lot easier, as well as a lot more enjoyable.

Clean Desk, Tidy Mind

My absolute biggest rule is that I always tidy and clean my desk at the end of the day, as well as ensuring it is ready to go in the morning. About once a month I do a proper clean and organise all my paperwork, however even just a small ‘hinch’ is exactly what you need to get yourself into the right frame of mind. There really is nothing better than getting to your desk in the morning, with a coffee, and it being all tidy in front of you. To go one up on yourself, leave your work to do list of the day right in the middle of the desk!

Set Routine

As we all know, humans seem to thrive off routine, no matter what that routine is. Whether we admit it or not, we all love having our own way of doing things and living our lives according to our chosen lifestyle. When it comes to working from home, the biggest thing I have to constantly remind myself is to stick to my routine. I don’t generally stick to the 9-5 way of doing things, however I try my best to stick to set hours and not get distracted during them. I usually set this all out on a Sunday evening with my diary in front of me. Being strict with yourself is the key to pulling this off.

Background Noise

This is a pretty simple point that I am trying to make, basically we can all think that having noise in the background at home is helpful, but it really isn’t. I sometimes have the radio on, or even Friends in the background, but your concentration level will never be the same with it. The minute I turn it all off I instantly feel more in the work zone and able to do my job a lot better.

Flexible is Okay

At the end of the day, working from home is not the same as being committed to a 9 to 5 office job. If you have the option of being a little flexible there is nothing to say that this is not okay. Any appointments I have I generally book in the week as it is less busy and I want to spend my weekends with loved ones, however as I manage my time pretty well, I am able to work around it. If I have an appointment in the morning I will start work later and ultimately keep going until I am done, which yes probably is a lot later than the average finish time. However, as long as it isn’t affecting your life in a negative way, what is wrong with that? Give yourself a break… no one is perfect.

Timed Breaks

A little tip I learnt from my grandad. For the sake of your eyes, mental well-being and productiveness level, give yourself timed breaks. I set an alarm on my phone for 60 minutes – I then work for that 60 minutes until the alarm goes off and then I stand up, stretch it out, make a drink and give myself 10 minutes to refuel. Also, when I am working, as a lot of it is computer based, I try to look away from the screen regularly so that my eyes don’t get too strained.

Work and Leisure

The biggest lesson I have had to learn is that you need to be able to distinguish between your work area and your leisure area. I generally won’t work anywhere else in my flat apart from my desk, then I generally will never sit at my desk unless I am working. You have to be able to get that balance right in order to live both sides of your life to the maximum. If I’m being honest, the next thing I want to do it turn my guest room into a study, to be able to get better separation from work to life.

 

Shop this Post

 

Dress – Zara

Belt – Gucci

Shoes – New Look

Bag – Mallorca Market

 

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I have not been paid to feature any brands, and all views and opinions are my own.

5 + 7 =

My Go-To Summer Evening Look

My Go-To Summer Evening Look

Imagery by Hana Dallimore Photography

I am a typical girly girl when it comes to getting dressed up in the evening. I love the process of a chilled evening, drinking a glass of wine, listening to music and getting my hair and makeup done. It is just a fun time to relax and unwind whilst also having a little pamper and getting creative. However, I do very much prefer the experience in the Winter Autumn months. Summer fashion is not where my natural skill set lies, so it takes a lot of work for me to look and feel good during the Summer, months, particularly on holiday. I just hate how uncomfortable I feel in myself when it is hot, so it is so difficult to find something to wear that changes this.

A good Summer evening look for me needs to be chic and relaxed, whilst also keeping the touch of glam that comes with all my Winter evening looks.

The first thing I try to do when putting together a Summer evening look is picking out the colour scheme. This is the toughest part of putting a look together for me as my natural colour to go towards is black. In the Summer, black just doesn’t really work, so I have to try extremely hard to stay away from it and adopt a love for the brighter shades. If I’m being honest, my go to colour in Summer is white… very much my Summer black! I personally think white works quite well on me, and as with black, I adore the simplicity and versatility of it. I can accessorize in any way, wear any makeup look I fancy and have an extremely varied choice of shoes and bags to compliment the outfit. This white dress featured in this post was a little New Look bargain at the beginning of the season and I absolutely love it. The navy stripes add the perfect touch of subtle colour to the outfit, and it comes with the amazing versatility of such a good colour.

One thing I learnt last year during the Summer season was to be very picky about the Summer dresses I choose to buy. There are a lot of quirky and cute dresses on the high street nowadays, however there is such a variety of different qualities. What is even more strange is that this can be varied within one shop. I personally love New Look for my Summer pieces, although I do choose to shop in store as not all the dresses are of the same quality. This one featured is very good. The fabric is soft to touch, comfortable to wear and is not translucent in colour one bit. Hence, why I have already reached for it a lot. I love the flexibility of this dress, being able to dress it up for the evening and then down for the day… even also wearing it as a cover up over a swimming costume.

For me, a Summer evening outfit really comes together with the shoes and bag. I love bringing out my Summer sandals during this season, mainly because I can walk in them a lot better than my Winter heels. Summer sandals are so easy to wear with a Summer dress, especially the block heel style that is very much on trend at the moment. I think all my Summer shoes have this heel and I love it because it adds the perfect height, whilst also remaining comfortable. These sandals were a little ASOS order for me at the beginning of the season and I love them. They can be worn with so many outfits, are easy to wear and are the perfect shade of tan to be pulled off with lots of other different colours.

At this time of year, I also love using my bright coloured handbags and experimenting with different textures. I mean don’t get me wrong, I use all my handbags at all times of the year, however having a bold and bright one in the Summer just always works. I bought this pink bag around two years ago from Mulberry and have shocked myself with how much it has been used. In fact, I did not think for one second, I would use it quite as much during the Winter as I do in the Summer. I adore the sweet shade of pink and it just goes with so much of my wardrobe – particularly a white toned outfit for a Summer evening. I personally think that if you want to invest in a colourful handbag, starting with a pastel toned one is going to give you a lot more flexibility with when you can wear it. I would be tempted to say that this could possibly be my favourite bag in my collection.

In terms of accessories I have one rule in the Summer… only one. I personally love jewellery and nice accessories in the Summer, however because of the usual heat I cannot stand to wear much. So, my go to is a statement pair of earrings. Rings and necklaces just irritate me when I am hot, but a chunky pair of earrings looks chic, whilst also not getting in the way or being a nuisance. I absolutely adore earrings and seemed to have gathered quite the collection. What is even better, you don’t need to spend a fortune to get pretty ones. This year my go to stores has been New Look, Accessorize and Mint Velvet.

All in all, if I had to describe my Summer evening look in a few words it would be relaxed, effortlessly chic and minimal. A simple dress with accessories to bring it to life, which gives you the ability to look glam whilst also remaining cool and comfortable.

 

Shop this post:

 

Dress – New Look

Shoes – ASOS

Bag – Mulberry

Earrings – New Look

 

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I have not been paid to feature any brands, and all views and opinions are my own.

 

Protecting the world we live in

Protecting the world we live in

Imagery by Hana Dallimore Photography

Today I wanted to share a short and sweet post about something that is very rare for me to discuss here on the blog. I am by no means someone who does absolutely everything I can to make good choices, and I am by no means perfect, but in the last few months I have been making very conscious decisions to make changes in my home. The challenges that we are currently facing in our world is starting to become very scary in my eyes, and I want to do my part, no matter how small to educate myself and make physical, every day changes. When you research everything you can do, and discuss with others what they are doing, it can all become very overwhelming. For quite a long time, all the information I had gathered seemed meaningless as I was completely lost with what to do with it. Eventually, after much thought, I decided that it is much more about making one small change at a time rather than a complete adjustment to my lifestyle.

Gradually I have begun to put these small changes in place, building them one at a time and really enforcing them into my everyday routines. These changes are minimal, but in turn I am hoping will add up to big results.

I would like to share the small changes that I have started to make, to hopefully inspire you with how you can adjust the products/ services you use as part of everyday life. The biggest thing to remember is that ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’, and in order for us all to make the relevant changes to protect our planet, it is going to be a very gradual process that requires small actions over time. So, why not begin by changing one thing and see where you go?

Re-usable cotton pads

This is the first change I made, as I have always felt awful about how many cotton pads, I use to complete my skincare. I purchased a pack of 16 re-usable cotton pads and wash them as they run out. So far this is working perfectly, and I have not bought or used a disposable one since.

Bamboo cotton sticks

I purchased some of these a few weeks ago in an amazing little green shop close to me and love them! In fairness I don’t use that many, but at least now when I do, I can throw them in the compost and the will degrade on their own.

Glass soap bottles

A few months ago, I bought a glass hand wash and lotion for my bathroom, more so because they look pretty, and have subsequently been refilling them from the local shop I use where you go and fill up into your own containers.

AVEDA

For around two years now I have been using AVEDA, and one thing I love about them is that the products are much better for the environment. All the packaging is recyclable and since you don’t use as much product each time, I am getting through much less products than in previous years.

No to black plastic

This is something I am getting much hotter on now, as until recently you could recycle black plastic in my area. I am now dubious as to whether or not it does get recycled now, so I am just doing my best not to buy it at all.

Soap Bars

Simple, have a soap bar in your shower rather than shower gel, no plastic.

Reduced Shower/ Bath Times

Again, an easy adjustment, try to cut back your water usage. I used to have a lot of baths in the evening and have now reduced this to around one a week as a treat. I also have tried my best to cut back my shower time, stopping myself indulging under the water pointlessly.

Recycling properly

Let’s be honest, most of us do recycle, but sometimes we can all be a bit slack. I have made sure in recent months that I am doing it properly, all the time. Always put your rubbish in the correct bins and always take packaging home if there is no public recycling bin around.

Online Shopping Packaging

I did an Instastories rant about this a few weeks ago and it received a lot of feedback. Many agreed that the amount of packaging sent out in parcels is ridiculous, and I have made sure that I am trying my best not to order from brands who are known to use too much packaging.

Shopping bags

Really, there is no excuse. None of us should be using plastic shopping bags anymore. I have a huge pile of reusable bags in the boot of my car and I now point-blank refuse to use anything other than them.

Re-usable products – Simply Green

A new shop opened locally to me in the last few months and it is amazing. It stocks a variety of groceries and house hold products, where you can go in, use your own containers and purchase exactly what you need, so there is no need for wastage nor unnecessary packaging.

Local Fruit and Vegetables

This is something that I am not able to do all the time, but I try my best to shop locally for my fruit and veg. The quality is better, my money is going to a better place and I don’t use any packaging whatsoever.

Walking

I am not able to give up my car, as I need my car for work and life, like most of us. However, when I am able to go somewhere without it, I will. Also, it can’t hurt to burn the extra calories.

 

Shop this post:

 

Linen Trousers – Primark

Top – H&M

Belt – Gucci

Shoes – New Look

Bag – Zara

 

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I have not been paid to feature any brands, and all views and opinions are my own.

Staple pieces for your Summer wardrobe

Staple pieces for your Summer wardrobe

Imagery by Hana Dallimore Photography

Summer for me is the season that I dread the most in terms of fashion. I am not ashamed to admit that a large part of it is that I am uncomfortable in my body at the moment, but also in general I have never been a huge lover of the styles available at this time of year. Personally, I just don’t like wearing clothes that are revealing, especially in the heat when you just feel over heated and like everything sticks to you. Nevertheless, each day we must get dressed and if that is a must, I want to look my best. I adore clothes, and choosing what to wear every day, so having good pieces in my wardrobe is a necessity.

Summer for me is probably the time when I have the highest turnover in my wardrobe, as I have never really invested in key pieces and find that the trends change a lot more quickly than in other seasons.

So, this post is going to be all about trying to introduce key pieces into your Summer wardrobe, which are hopefully pieces that can be loved and used year after year, without going out of style. This post has been a lot harder to put together than the Winter edition last year, as naturally it is the one time of year that my brain and fashion just don’t click together. As well as sharing the tips I have gathered, I am also really keen to know what you have in your wardrobe as staple pieces for the season. Let me know in the comment section below.

Good Quality Dresses

Let’s be honest, is there a much better feeling than putting on a swishy Summer dress when it is baking hot. I absolutely love my dresses, and I have started to build quite the collection over the last few years to have a handful of good go to’s ready in the morning. I learnt my lesson pretty quickly that buying super cheap dresses isn’t the way forward, as the minute you have washed them, they tend to lose their colour and texture, particularly over time. So, I have started to become a lot fussier with where I get them from and have started to notice a difference. The best places I have bought from in the last few years include Zara, Mango, Mint Velvet and The White Company.

Bright Handbags

It is no secret that I love my handbags, and last year I started to really escape my need to only have neutral handbags and invest in some brightly coloured pieces. My baby pink Mulberry that has been the statement piece for a lot of outfits in Summer 2018 through to now has received a lot of attention, and I have definitely got more wear out of it than I ever expected. I absolutely adore it, as it goes with so much in my wardrobe, and the bright colour makes me so happy every time I see it. Then, for my birthday I was then lucky enough to receive a bright red Gucci Marmont, in a textured material ready for Summer. I have already used this bag so much and I absolutely love it! It adds the perfect pop of colour to every outfit and is already becoming my go to in my Summer 19 wardrobe.

Block Heels

 

I have found with block heels that a lot of people either love or hate them, and I am very much a love. I adore how they add height to the leg, which is often needed with Summer dresses, whilst also being comfortable and allowing me to walk in them easily. There are such a huge variety of this shoe on the market nowadays, especially between the different price brackets. I have also found that generally my block heeled sandals have tended to last a lot longer than a few others, potentially just because they are sturdy and much more hard wearing. This paid are one of my favourites from last year, from a new brand I discovered from Linzi shoes.

Flouncy Outerwear

Every Summer I seem to spend most of the season searching for the perfect pieces to wear over dresses when I just feel like I want something to cover me rather than offer warmth. For this, I have found that the best places to look are in the most obscure places, such as local markets, independent boutiques and charity shops. For these types of items, I usually choose black or neutral, so that they then will go with everything in my wardrobe.

A linen blazer

A blazer may not be the first thing you think of when deciding what to put in your Summer wardrobe, but for me it is a staple that has been there for years. I am not talking about anything overly heavy or rich in texture, but light weight, neutral in colour and most importantly have a great shape to it. This year I just bought myself a neutral pink linen blazer from Mango, and it is everything you could ever need in a Summer blazer. For me, I normally wear a Summer blazer in the evening over a dress, or in the day if I am putting together a work outfit or going somewhere a bit more special.

Denim Skirts

A trend definitely inherited from my stylish grandma, a good quality denim skirt for Summer. This is an item in your wardrobe that can be used over and over again throughout the season, and through the years. They can be worn with so many different tops and accessories to create different looks and can also be worn for many different scenarios in life. My favourite denim skirt look has always been a good quality navy midi, paired with a blue and white check shirt, tan block heels and a bright, statement handbag. The best denim skirts in my wardrobe over the years have come from Fat Face, Marks and Spencer’s and Next.

 

Shop this Post

 

Dress – Zara

Bag – Gucci

Shoes – Linzi Shoes

 

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I have not been paid to feature any brands, and all views and opinions are my own.

My Tips for Anxious Travellers

My Tips for Anxious Travellers

Imagery by Hana Dallimore Photography

I have been very lucky in my life to have seen a lot of places and been given the opportunity to travel with my family and friends. In the last few years this has definitely increased as I have just had an urge to explore new places and spend more quality time with the ones I love. With this, I have become pretty well equipped mentally and physically when it comes to travelling, even if it still isn’t one of my favourite things. I like to think of myself as a pretty organised and ‘got my shit together’ person, however travelling is one of the few times that I crumble. Just for full transparency here, I am referring to flying, not so much any other forms of travel.

I think there are many different reasons as to why I feel very anxious flying, with the main one being that I physically don’t understand how it works. Don’t get me wrong, I have had it explained to me a lot, but however much you give me the facts it still always will seem odd and unnatural to me that something is flying in the sky… especially something so bloody big and heavy! I think also, I am a very big control freak, so flying for me is a form of transport that I have to totally give up all control over. On a train I can get off at the next stop, on a bus there are frequent stops, and, in a car, I am totally the one in control. These two things seem to be the reason that a lot of people feel uncomfortable and I think they are both entirely understandable.

So, what are the options here? Well firstly, you could do what my mum used to threaten to do, which was to never fly again and just go away to places she can drive. Fair enough, but unfortunately there are too many beautiful places in the world that I need to visit. Secondly, you can try to forget about it and just get on with it, still feeling anxious whenever you travel. Or, you can take matters into your own hands and strive to be able to travel with all your feeling and emotions fully in control.

As with any forms of anxiety, it is never going to be an easy battle to control it and it is very much an up and down rollercoaster ride to feeling a lot more able in yourself. Also, this whole blog post is obviously based on my own experience and my own ability to begin to control this anxiety, so obviously this is just what I do rather than medical advice.

Breath

As with the majority of things in life, breathing is key. I always start to feel anxious about travelling the night before, particularly when I am trying to get to sleep. So, it is at this point that I start to focus on my breathing. I take small and slow breaths, thinking about nothing other than what I am doing. I always find that if I start at this point, I am able to control my anxiety a lot better as it gets closer to travelling and then obviously during.

Organisation

Being organised is one of the major ways that I am able to feel a lot better when travelling. If I know that everything is sorted it is only leaving the physically act of flying to be worried about. This means packing is done in an orderly manner, my hand luggage is organised and laid out easily, I have all my main documents and money in one wallet, and I know all the information I need on the other side. Having everything done in this way is obviously almost essential for flying, but I have to do it in a very OCD way.

Choose your seat

As I mentioned above, one of the biggest reasons that I feel uncomfortable flying is the lack of control. So, one of the best things I can do to feel much more in control is choosing my seat when booking the flight. By doing this, I feel mentally reassured as I know where I am going to be sitting. I also always choose an aisle seat as it makes me feel a lot better knowing that I am able to get up whenever I need to. I hate feeling claustrophobic so this is always a must for me. Having said that, when discussing this with someone before, they told me that they feel a lot better sat by the window, as being able to see makes them feel a lot more in control. So, as with anything this is different depending on the person.

 

Distractions

For me, the best way to feel okay on the flight, particularly when taking off is by being distracted. I always make sure that I am well equipped for the flight beforehand, which includes downloading multiple Netflix box sets/ tv programmes, as well as podcasts and some music. I also always have a book with me and buy a magazine at the airport so that there really is a distraction based on what I fancy doing at the time. If I’m being honest, the last few times I have flown I have been with my grandma, who is the best chatter box distraction you could ever ask for!

Water

My last step is water. Before travelling I always make sure that I have had a good amount of water, as well as some with me for the flight, as I always find that I can really control my feelings and myself if I am well hydrated. It ensures that you have a clear head, as well as the ability to focus better on your breathing.

 Shop this post:

Top – H&M

Shorts – Zara

Cover Up – Zara

Shoes – New Look

Bag – Zara 

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I have not been paid to feature any brands, and all views and opinions are my own.