Fashion | How to compose an outfit and work with wide sleeves.

_DSC0414 _DSC0485

(very unlike myself, the moody photo. It gives all of us the laughs 🙂 )

Working with different lengths of clothing can make an outfit work better instantly. Clothing like art is all about composition and with the lovely wide sleeve having made a come back, now is the perfect time to work on your outfit composition.

When I was a teenager the style was for short tops and low rise jeans, looking at TV shows like Gilmore Girls at the time you can see how this made our silhouettes so boxy and because I grew up with that being the ‘look’ I sometimes forget the rules to dressing better and how to make an outfit more flattering.

Even if you are tall like me, making a slimline silhoutte works both for making yourself taller and slimmer. To create that line, you have some choices, in this case, the long, sleeveless blazer elongates my body making a cohesive line, even though its actually broken up between my skirt and my top. Furthermore the reason everyone should have a wide sleeve top in their closet is because it helps creating more flow. It reaches further down our arms (great for those shorter in the body also) and the wide sleeve gives more movement to the outfit which in turn adds to that length. no sharp cut off points!

To keep that length as well, this faux fur stole from Zara adds the perfect distraction as to where my skirt and top meet as the shape of it leads the eye down and over that cut in my middle.

If like me however, you need to at least give the illusion of a waist, belt outside of the jacket, or the longest part of your outfit, then either side of that line is the same keeping the overall length you are trying to create.


Fashion | How to wear a leather skirt to work & other fashion statements


(My coat is Zara, The sweater is Zara from two years ago, the shirt: Next, The Skirt: Next, Leggings: Topshop Tall, Boots: Long Tall Sally) 


As we were walking around the stores in London’s, Oxford Circus one of my best friends, Becky told me of how she had been on the hunt for a faux/leather mini skirt but that she wasn’t sure whether she could wear it to work.

The answer is, in some cases maybe not, but in a lot of cases yes, you can almost always wear whatever you want to work.

Since I don’t own a neutral leather skirt I’m going to improvise with this silver number. Interestingly I bought this skirt on sale for £10.00 in Kent but when I walked past Next in London, I saw the same skirt but not on sale! Even better, it is still available online in silver+ and even better for those of you like Boo (Becky) who would like it in Black+. (Its also not going to break the bank and is perfect for those who don’t wear leather.)

Leather Mini Skirt from Next

So the big question, “How can you wear a black leather skirt to work?”

The answer is quite simple. To make each piece in your wardrobe more wearable you have to pay attention to how you style it. The key, in terms of the leather skirt is subverting expectation of how this should be worn. We all have expectations as to how a skirt like this should look, worn with heels, worn out to drinks or on a date etc but for work none of this applies. For work it needs to be made smarter and so we need to add those elements to the skirt to make it more wearable.

In this case my friend, Boo (Becky) already has a lot of these in her wardrobe. Becky is a big lover of the smart, collared shirt for work and that is the perfect place to start the transformation…


I don’t often wear shirts like this because they don’t suit me that well, but imagine a smart, starched almost, white collared shirt tucked into your leather skirt with either a cute button up cardigan (and keep it buttoned up – I love this pearl embellished one from Zara particularly) and you instantly begin to look more polished. In this case, I’ve worn an uber thick sweater from Zara but a slightly longer one in a simple colour is great at keeping your outfit polished and put together. You also can often find that thinner layers look smarter than the thick jumper, if its a cold day, its worth saving your pennies for a long lasting cashmere sweater for these days. J Crew do an awesome array of super soft, cashmere for all occasions. Cheaper stores in the UK also include, Marks and Spencer & Supermarket, Tesco.

In terms of the shirt you can make the look more preppy by keeping it fitted and tucked in or loosen the look up by choosing a longer one that has a loose, less structured fit.

The roll neck/turtleneck

My bosses very favourite piece of clothing, the roll neck is also perfect for wearing with a leather skirt. Just take a look here+ at ASOS where if you search the word Leather skirt the looks available to you mainly involve that classic turtleneck look. This type of look also works because it makes you more covered up, something often associated with looking workwear appropriate. By covering up your chest and neck you balance out the over the knee skirt and appear more professional.

Of course, the best thing you can do is add a thick pair of tights, a boot (I prefer ankle boots but just under the knee works as well – over the knee less so). Better still, if you find a look that works for you, you can also wear it in different colours, for instance a black leather skirt and rollneck looks just as great together as this silver skirt will/would look with a grey rollneck.

Shopping leather skirts for work

White shirt from earlier (ASOS), Pearl Cardigan: Zara, Black Leather Skirt: Whistles (In the sale there was also a fantastic wrap leather skirt which was so tempting if I had more money to spend), another which looks amazing is this one+ from ASOS

Go longer

Another colleague of mine, actually the one person who made me so sure that you can wear a leather skirt to work, out at night and even to meetings is my colleague, Zip. Rather than the above knee number she sticks to a classic pencil skirt. I’ve seen her pair it with silk/sateen shirts to over sized chunky jumpers with suede tasseled ankle boots and she always looks phenomenal.

For something which is sometimes only associated with being sexy, worn only for dates and drinks and in St Trinians its actually a fantastically dynamic piece of clothing. On the weekend think about softening the look with a fluffy sweater, or give it some whimsy with a disney T shirt, or make it rock ‘n’ roll with a band T shirt, the options are endless!


The thing you need most is perhaps the hardest to find, confidence.

There is nothing quite like it when you want to make something work for you, whether its getting a new job or wearing a leather skirt to your current one, confidence will always be key. If you’ve not quite got it yet? The best advice is always, fake it till you make it and better still, the braver you are, the more comfortable you will become.

Fashion | How to make dressing for a holiday party easier


Velvet Jacket+

When it comes to Christmas dressing I find that most people are in one of two minds. The person that dresses up for christmas and the person in PJ’s (or as close as). That being said however, when it comes to the christmas party there is often a whole other set of rules for what to wear.

Depending on what you want your outfit to say the Christmas party can often be a sticking point. Do you go smart casual or go full on, wear all the velvet and sequins you can get your hands on?

Personally I like to go simple, one thing to change the regular into the irregular.

When I saw this velvet jacket I knew it was perfect for the Christmas season, relaxed like you’re going casual, but velvet so you know your dressing up for once it actually makes getting dressed easy!

Finally I have the key, the dressed up jacket! Other dressed up options of course is a sequin jacket (hello sparkles), The silk bomber, Applique velvet jacket,  also I am officially in love with this sequin bomber jacket! Who said Christmas party dressing wasn’t easy?

_DSC0558 _DSC0526

Friday Fashion Feelings | Your emotions v.s getting dressed

_DSC0556 _DSC0590

When you write about anything long enough you start to see patterns and trends. Heavens even your topics can get a little staid.

In blogs the worst you find is, “I went to Nordstrom last week and fell in love with this little striped…” yeah, sure you did, simple sponsored post. For me I have begun seeing a different type of pattern, a pattern about staring into a wardrobe void and coming up blank.

The reality is on a day where I can barely get off the couch or string a sentence together is the same day I can’t get dressed either. When my head feels messy or my house is messy, when I feel claustrophobic from our tiny office and trains the less inventive I become, the less inspired, the more monotony of my day to day life the harder it can be to be, ‘creative’.

This outfit is the personification of a bad dressing day. See if you give me date night, I’ll give you my khaki suede pencil skirt and burgundy peep hole shirt with orange suede boots and I’m happy. That is easy and fun but for a casual Sunday? A walk for coffee and a trek through a field and I’m stuck. I’m not a casual dresser. I have friends who can just pull on jeans, a t-shirt and cardigan and just look polished, effortless and cool but I’m not one of those people, if I dress casual then I look casual, nothing polished about it.

So what I am finding on repeat is the struggle of getting dressed when I’m emotionally tired and when I feel a little cramped and for a big word, suffocated. Part of that person starts to struggle with the idea of getting dressed.

Another part of that is not seeing the wood from the trees when it comes to endless fabric and little definition. In contrast this lack of space has led myself and Josh to consider switching up my wardrobe and honestly has led me to consider how we can better manage our stuff and our space to give us the most mental space as possible.

I began to realize that often what we our capable of writing and putting on or body is often influenced by other external factors and how we live. In terms of a wardrobe it can be as simple as undertaking the 30 for 30 or a capsule wardrobe and for others it could be re organizing our space, giving ourselves more breathing room and in terms of the blog… maybe that means making time for sharing reality v.s. sponsored, v.s. posed.

Fashion |Awkward posing in Chambray

_DSC0559 _DSC0564

Chambray: Next, Scarf: Zara, Coat: Next, Umbrella: Zara, Skirt: H&M, Boots: New Look

If you follow me on my Instagram you will know, these pictures are so old I can honestly say, “This is like, so… 2015…” but in my hopes to always be three weeks ahead of posts going out I have quite a few outfits saved up, even whilst only posting every other week.

Secondly, after we took our break these were the first pictures back and lets all admit it.

My posing sucked.

I wasn’t even sure if I wanted to share these. They are anything but perfect but heres the thing, I love this scarf. I love being busty and daring to wear a buttoned up chambray and bow. I also adore this white skirt and I’m not going to be afraid to shout about it.

Even whilst awkwardly posing.
_DSC0518 _DSC0566

The Capsule Wardrobe | Still Picking Favourites, Shoe Addition

_DSC0402I thought when I started capsuling that having only 9 pairs of shoes would be the worst thing ever.

Perhaps I was over dramatic but it was a serious concern of mine that maybe 9 pairs would not be enough. Funnily, once you get immersed in a capsule after a few months you start realising that it doesn’t matter how many pairs of shoes or how many T-shirts you own, you still pick favourites.

For todays post I wanted to focus primarily on three pairs of shoes that I have worn to death even when I have various other pairs to choose from!


The suede boot from, New Look

I made such a killing on this pair. I bought them for only £8 when they were around £50 full price. Even more surprising is they are only a size eight but over the past autumn and winter I have worn this pair so much that one is now a drastically different colour to the other. They perhaps won’t last long past this winter but they have been my constant, friendly companion and for that I am really thankful.


The fur lined boot from, New Look

As much as I am a magpie, I am a hoarder for all things faux fur. These lined boots are so warm its criminal and even better they have fantastic grip for those icy days!

The Leopard print flats from LTS, barefoot Tess

I was so worried about these because they are really flat with minimal support but these have made an appearance during all our house demo work and I love them for a casual weekend. Now, I’m not even sure if I could live without them, not to mention they are leopard print so really, how could you not?

Fashion experiment | Marie Kondo’s shirts and sweaters storage


Fashion experiment | Marie Kondo’s shirts and sweaters storage 

Marie Kondo’s book blew up last year and one of the things that I loved was her storage solutions. As I get dressed daily in the relative dark (thank you crazy early hour waking times) my wardrobe and by extension my bedroom is often a crazy mess of confused clothing come Friday morning.

However during the winter break we have done a lot to our house. One of which was reintroducing a drawer system to both of our wardrobes rather than shelves. With this in mind I wanted to find a way to keep my drawers organized even at six in the morning.

Here is my sweater drawer at the beginning of the week so you can see how it looked before. The method is uber easy and if you’ve ever worked in retail you’ll be a pro at the folding! Find the video of Marie herself showing you how to fold your drawer successfully here and now comes the more interesting part, will it last?

Will this be a good solution for other, long distance commuters? Only time will tell! Give me a month and I’ll probably give you a mess but lets see! For the last week at home its been perfect but lets see how this works out!

Fashion | Back to work, not back to boring


Kimono & Dress, Zara Sale, In Store, Boots: New Look SS15, Bag: Monsoon AW14/15, skinny scarf used as sash: Zara AW2015

Fashion | 

Many of you I know will already be back at work but for the lucky few this is our first work day of 2016.

Now just like you make resolutions to lose weight, work out more, be more positive . . . whatever it is have you thought about your dressing/clothing resolutions?

I have.

Wear more colour, be more experimental, choose more patterns, no more buying blue . . . the list goes on but for the first day back. Don’t be expected, put the black pencil skirt down and be a tiny bit brave (even if you are still wearing black and grey – umm colour fairy? Where are you?)

_DSC0422 _DSC0406

How to wear a classic “Rock Chick” look

Black Blazer: Zara, Scarf: Zara, T: H&M (2010), Bag: Primark, Leggings: H&M, Boots: New Look

I love finding new styles to try and one that I haven’t revisited in a while? The classic rock chick. Once upon a time I was all about leather jackets, skinny jeans and black blazers but in all honesty its been a while!

Something about these new on sale boots called to me however and said, hey you! Lets get back out there and try a classic rock chick look and this is what I arrived at.

When you have a smaller wardrobe I implore you all to figure out a look like this. Perfect for your more edgy days its relatively easy to accomplish and equally, easy to alter and include various items from your capsule.

For this look I wore leggings but I also know that it would wear well with my black, Zara jeans. While switching up my top a black top which hangs slightly longer would look equally awesome and more sophisticated for casual Fridays at work! If blacks not your colour why not try the same look with navy and dark blue jeans or even a dark forest green!

Rock boots and leather. These are a pair of my replacement boots for those wintery, rainy days and with the added buckle detailing it enters instant rock chick status which I completely love. Its funny because a look I would wear an awful lot back in my late teens felt really different for me when I wore this last week and yet I think once winter hits next year this might once again become a go to look for me.

The key I think to any rock-chick look is keep it simple and classic so its more timeless and appropriate for any age and then add in some stronger, edgier details. What pulls this look together is the sharper lines of the blazer, the silver of the boots buckles and the hardware on the bag. If you want a more refined look however  try minimising these accents or make your bag choice softer or even wear a softer shaped jacket perhaps switching it up to leather! A personal favourite from last year was a suede waterfall jacket from next in Navy so fingers crossed this style might return this year!

Winter 2015 Capsule Wardrobe Wrap Up

Camel Coat: Next, Coca-Cola Sweater: Primark Mens adjusted by me, White Tee: Zara, Gold Necklace: Z for Accessorize, Denim Jeans: Zara, Blue Boots: Clarks similar

Winter capsule wrap up. Can you believe it’s already time to wrap up winter? I mean sure I have been excitedly planning for spring for about the last month and half but that’s beside the point. So the winter capsule folks, what did I think? Well honestly I am a hundred percent happier with my wardrobe as a whole as far as winter goes but I also cheated this season as I discussed here+ why? Because I wanted to wear the rest of my wardrobe! It’s been an uber interesting Autumn and Winter as far as dressing goes and I feel so set for next year. The fabulous thing about doing the capsule wardrobe challenge as I’ve stated a million times before is that it aligned my real life with my imaginary and for AW I feel like I have a great grip on how I like to dress and what I need to make my life tick. Here is a list of my must haves for Autumn and Winter no matter what the trends in 2015/16. Basics:

  • Tights in black
  • Leggings
  • Tank tops for layers
  • V neck T-shirts


  • Long sleeved scoop neck T shirt in plain or stripes
  • Chambray Shirt
  • Plaid shirt
  • Longline knit cardigan
  • Short cardigan
  • Great blue jeans (skinny fit)
  • Blue jean alternative

Work smart

  • Black or dark pencil skirt
  • Smart work trousers
  • Smart blouse/shirt
  • White shirt


  • Flat comfortable and supportive boots
  • Full foot covered, flat smart shoes
  • Smart ankle boots
  • A sexy pair of heels


  • Thick knitted scarf
  • Knitted hat
  • Knitted headband
  • Full fingered gloves in leather
  • Half finger gloves in knit.


  • Ankle length running leggings/tights
  • Thicker leggings for cycling
  • Sweat tank layered under a regular tank (I don’t like my arms covered too much)
  • Luminescent runner’s jacket
  • Long sleeved light weight running jacket with reflective strips
  • Swim costume
  • Gloves for running
  • Padded full fingered gloves for cycling
  • Warm headband for running
  • Running Shoes with reflective strips for night time runs
  • Walking boots
  • Alternative trainers for cycling if needed

This is all quite extensive and yet I feel like I’ve missed something but you get the picture. Spending six months with limited access to my clothes has been an incredible experience it really forces you to examine what you actually wear. It also limits confusion I definitely have more clothes to get rid of and I will be readjusting my size restrictions next autumn but overall I have such a better grasp on what a wardrobe should be and I’m hopeful that my clothes will soon not need a room of their own!

Capsule Wardrobes 101

A wonderful friend and excellent writer, Aimee Dewar commented last weekend and told me that she too has undertaken a capsule wardrobe of only 22 pieces! Ack! And asked if I had a beginners post which is helpful, now I have as we all know spoken a lot about capsules but today I thought I’d write a quick condensed what to do and what to expect post about starting a capsule wardrobe.

Your first Capsule will probably suck.

Elegantly worded I know but honestly if like most people you’ve come to this decision because you have loads of clothes and nothing to wear than never fear this will help but your first few months? Yeah, they’ll probably suck.

Why? Mainly because you’ve come to this conclusion because you’ve bought a lot of stuff without a pulled together vision and that’s ok, we’ve all shopped to make ourselves feel better, shopped to look better or just because consumerism states that we ‘need’ stuff. So in your first few months you may find that you in fact don’t actually like anything you own and that’s ok, that’s acceptable and you might also find that what you own no longer suits your lifestyle and this is what the challenge aims to change.


Personal style and fashion isn’t relevant to all of us. We don’t all spend our lives thinking about clothes but personally? I do. Before I began the capsule wardrobe I took some time to think and write down what I wanted to achieve from the capsule wardrobe.

  • I wanted my own personal, cohesive style
  • I wanted to make everyday dressing simpler
  • And I wanted to save money and buy less.

With all of that in mind I was then able to think about what type of style I wanted to eventually achieve and to start that I firstly looked at what I owned


Rather than pulling out what you don’t like or wear pull out what you love and what you want to wear on a day to day basis!

Throw any of the following items;

Items beyond repair, which include things like un-mendable rips and holes and jumpers which are bobbled beyond repair.


Anything that is still good quality as a personal choice I choose to donate to clothing banks which clothe the homeless but you can sell or donate to charity shops or any course you love you can also do a clothes swap with friends, I had one item which I felt would work well for my sister in law so there are multiple options when it comes to giving clothes a new lease of life!

Scared to Purge?

Most of us have probably had some reservations when it comes to throwing away large quantities of clothes which are perfectly wearable and why shouldn’t you? You spent your hard earned cash on these items! They’re not worn out, they might even still be high fashion and worst-case scenario? They might still have the tags on! Acknowledge the areas where you have spent irresponsibly but don’t beat yourself up about it most of us have been there too. But what to do about it?

The reality is having a lot of things we don’t need can often lead to dependency on these items to give our life worth and that’s not good. You are more important, more beautiful and more wonderful than any outfit you can pull together, I promise you that. So don’t feel bad for getting rid of the clutter in your life! There are plenty of incredible clothes banks and charities who can take your clothes and give them to well loved homes, it may be the end of your journey with these items but its not the end of the clothes life!

If your not sure you’re making the right decision with a certain item however there’s an easy way to find out. Only throw current season items but if your still not sure keep them close by and accessible during your first capsule and if you don’t wear it and think about it, then you probably never needed it in the first place!

Exceptions to the rule would be shorts that fit great but the sun never shone that summer, or snow boots/coats during mild winters.


It might seem obvious but it wasn’t to me at first but your first capsule should probably just be items you already own.

Why? You need to establish the gaps in your wardrobe what have you been overlooking when impulse buying? What’s needed to develop your style? These are things you can only find once you’ve spent some time looking at what you already own.


Your possibly a week in, a month or you’ve done three months or more but keep assessing your wardrobe, what do you love to wear and what makes you feel like the best version of you, every time you wear it?

Take notes and pay attention because even if you think you have no style or fashion sense now its in these reflections that you may come to realize you did have it all along! Big things to ask yourself is;

  • What pieces do I always fall back on?
  • What does my real life actually need in the way of clothes?
  • What type of functionality do these pieces need? (to be moveable, comfortable, smart, casual? Etc)
  • What’s my core style foundation? (Do you wear lots of skirts? Dresses or pants/trousers? Etc)
  • Are you a neutrals girl or a colourful girl?

There are a lot of questions but most things will just come up naturally and these things will be really helpful to know in the next stage,

Design, again.

This is where things get fun again! In order to avoid falling back into old habits I suggest making a tonne of lists before even thinking about hitting the shops and in this section I suggest designing yourself your dream wardrobe and this is where things get interesting.

Stage one:

The basics, everyone’s basics are different but this is the core foundation to your style and the first thing you should buy post capsule. For example mine looks like this for Autumn/Winter

  • Two tank tops
  • Two pairs of Leggings
  • Three short/cap sleeved V-neck T shirts
  • One – two jersey pencil skirts
  • A pair of smart work trousers (cropped, cigarette trousers)
  • A cardigan
  • A heavy, warm jumper
  • A great pair of blue jeans in your chosen shape (mine is low rise skinny)
  • A pair of Ankle Boots
  • A great pair of supportive trainers/sneakers
  • One work blouse
  • At least one just above the knee dress

The colours; The easiest way to dress well and make the most of any size wardrobe? Well that’s as simple as choosing cohesive colours! Making sure all your basics follow the same colour scheme means you have a really solid foundation to build upon with any stand out pieces.

Functionality; Before you hit the shops remember one thing. Everything you buy has to fit in and work with your real life, everyday. For example if you work in a lawyers office than buying a load of revealing tops isn’t going to be a good use of your cash or your wardrobe and if you work outside a lot than smart office clothes aren’t going to work for you either! So look at your life and only buy what you need now, there is after all plenty of time to re buy should your life change.

Helpful Rules for spending

Controlling your spending can be a long on going problem and we won’t necessarily have the same ways with coping with budgets. Myself, personally I have a very small budget for clothing, if I’m going to be realistic, at 24 I now know that I need to save more than I spend and that I have dreams and responsibilities which require me to be sensible and purchase responsibly and that affects my shopping choices.

Make sure everything you purchase is;

  • On your list
  • That you can’t live without it
  • That it fits perfectly, now. (Do not buy anything you have to get skinny to fit into!)
  • That it suits your actual frame. (We all like to think we might all be supermodels but your perhaps not, I know I like to pretend I don’t have a large rack but that’s me lying and roll necks will never be cute on me so be real with yourself and that honesty will pay you back with dividends.
  • Buying big names doesn’t give you style and it won’t necessarily make you happy. Remember, you are more than your clothes or hair, if you listen to India Arie.
  • Set a budget and stick to it.

What you stand to gain;

I wrote about this last week so check out the post here+ 

That is I believe most of it I might drop back and fill this in more but the main points are all here! If you have any questions or anything else you want answered just drop a comment below and I’ll even answer you there or add another section up here!

Helpful Posts

there are a lot of links here to make life easier simply search for website for tags as every article is under the heading of, Capsule Wardrobe.

therealjlow, Fashion New Year: Building a Signature Wardrobe

Capsule Wardrobe: Building on Classics

The Capsule Wardrobe | Part 1

The Capsule Wardrobe | AW 2014

The Capsule Wardrobe | First Week and Shopping Mistakes

Ethical Purging & The Capsule Wardrobe

India Holiday Capsule

India Holiday Capsule Part 2

India Holiday Capsule Part 3

The Capsule Wardrobe | His

How to Maximise your Capsule Wardrobe

The Capsule Wardrobe | Winter 2015

Honest Basics and the Capsule Wardrobe

Why I cheated on the Capsule Wardrobe with my other clothes

Vacation and Packing with a Capsule Wardrobe

Real Reasons why the Capsule Wardrobe will change your life!

The Capsule Wardrobe: A case for Leggings.

Cardigan: Next, Striped T: Primark, Leggings: H&M, Boots: George Asda, Umbrella: Zara

There is more articles on why not to wear leggings than probably any other fashion topic out there. The main reason for this? Because large quantities of women went through a terrible stage; wearing see-through leggings as pants/trousers.

And the girls of Maidstone? They love it.

Let me clear up something else I am not the worst offender although I have worn the odd shirt which isn’t quite perfect but this one above? Its not one of them. In Maidstone the girls who are guilty of the bad legging wearing are pretty shameless. They love their black leggings high waisted (and yes I know this for a fact) because they wear them with black crop tops and denim/leather jackets, true story.

So my case for leggings? Well its simple. Who wants to wear restrictive trousers/pants on your day off? Great for exercise and great for lounging, weekends are my leggings days and I love pairing them with long jumpers, T’s, shirts and Tunics and of course, boots.

I wore them an awful lot more when I was younger but I still have a soft spot for wearing them when I want a little more comfort or to go out on a long walk with Josh. Most peoples problem with leggings I believe is since they are so form fitting but just because people are uncomfortable doesn’t mean you should stop wearing what you want to. The key is to buy better quality thicker leggings which do protect your modesty.

What are your thoughts on leggings? A yes or a no?