ersonal

For the past few weeks I have been feeling really run down and stressed, due to a number of things -uni, work, money and life in general. So today I decided to do a bit of retail therapy – well Primark therapy – and checked out what the Preston store had to offer!

I only had 30 minutes to do some speedy shopping, as Ali had to go and prepare for his awesome radio show; Extra Time, on Guild Radio (little plug there for you guys!).

I was rushing around a quite surprisingly tidy Primark. For those of you who are international readers, Primark is basically a fairly cheap store which sells basic clothes, as well as one off ‘on-trend’ items. It’s also known for being a really untidy store (clothes all over the floor etc.) So I was shocked to see that the place was actually tidy!

Anyway, I picked up a few items, and in total spent £34, which is quite expensive for three things, but boy, they are worth it!

I bought:
‘Leather’ jacket, £20 – Despite already owning a black leather jacket (with a fur collar), I couldn’t help but buy this simple hooded version. I know that some of Primark’s ‘leather’ jackets look really cheap, but by pairing this baby with the right clothing and accessories, it will look amazing! The hood may ‘downgrade’ the jacket, but it will be so handy if it rains – and it always rains in Preston!

Polka dot grey & dark pink jumper , (the jumper is darker IRL) £12 – Polka dots are huge this season with Marc Jacobs, Stella McCartney and Diane von Furstenberg all including this eclectic print into their Autumn/Winter 2011 collections.  So it comes to no surprise that I had to effectively ‘jump on the bandwagon’ and purchase this gorgeous polka dot jumper! Many ‘typical’ polka dot prints consist of monochrome colours, so this buy was a little bit different to the norm, which I like! I can team this jumper with my leather shorts and my new vintage boots for a cheeky shopping trip, or I can wear it with this Topshop bodycon skirt and these shoe boots from Republic for a night out with the girls – the possibilities are endless!

Brassy deer ring £2 – The final item I bought was this adorable deer ring! As regular readers know, I LOVE my rings! So I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to add this brassy ring to my ever-growing collection. This ring can be worn with practically any outfit! I can also pair this baby with other similar colour rings that I have, for the ‘stacked’ effect. For £2, this is a well invested piece of jewellery.

I was fairly impressed with Primark today, as I saw quite a few ‘on-trend’ clothes, and even some ‘unique’ clothes, which is so different from their usual basic jersey and jumper stuff. I think Primark is a bit of a ‘hit and miss’, one day you’ll go in there and find loads of nice clothes which suit your style, and other days, you hardly find anything.  I definitely think today was one of them days where I saw loads of things to buy, but I simply didn’t have the time to have a good rummage through the clothes.

What do you guys think of Primark? It would be interesting to hear your thoughts!

styleb

As you may have seen from my previous post, I went to Style Birmingham this weekend. Here is a feature about the event, as well as a review of one of the two fashion shows I attended and the latest looks Retail Birmingham have predicted for Autumn/Winter 2011!

Style Birmingham was a three-day event which ran from the 23rd September to 25th September. Plenty of shoppers had the opportunity to bag exclusive instore offers and goodie bags, as well as having the chance to see two amazing fashion shows at the famous Birmingham Bullring, as well as the Town Hall for only £10.

Not only that but those who bought a Gold VIP ticket were granted a champagne reception in the VIP Lounge as well as bagging a meet and greet with the gorgeous George Lamb! Lucky so and so’s!

The event kicked off at 10am with scores of eager beavers waiting at The Mailbox to receive an exclusive shopper bag designed by Birmingham-born designer, Osman Yousefzada. This lovely illustrated bag was wrapped with a cute pink ribbon around it.

After everyone had collected their designer bags, they had the whole weekend to enter luxurious competitions such as the chance to win an Alexander McQueen scarf, as well as the opportunity to watch a couple of catwalk shows.

Bullring Fashion Show: Redefinition
The first fashion show I attended was ‘Redefinition’ in the Bullring. It was an half an hour catwalk show which showcased some amazingly-styled high street clothes. The show only had a limited number of seats available for Gold VIP ticket holders, however me and Ali  (who bought standard tickets) managed to bag ourselves a seat and a couple of goodie bags.

These goodie bags consisted of mostly men’s perfume samples (which was unfortunate for me but good for Ali), and a couple of beauty samples.

goodies

The show itself featured eight different ‘scenes’ from ‘Dark Romance’ to ‘Feathers and Fur’, here are a few of the scenes in detail.

‘Dark Romance’ was the first scene, and was one of my favourite ‘scenes’ of the day!
darkromance I love the styling of this particular picture I took, which reminds me of my style. I love the classic clashing of monochrome colours, as well as the detail that the gold chain belt brings to the outfit. As you can see on the image, all of the clothes are more or less an affordable price from top high street stores, so you don’t have to break the bank to achieve a simple, but seductive on-trend look.

‘The Mod Squad’ channelled the 60s vibe with the classic A-line skirt, graphic printed dresses and neck-tie blouses, as well as adding bright colour-blocking into the mix.
modsquad
I especially loved this bold look above and I think that this outfit, out of all the looks in this scene, was the best one to embody the current 60s trend! As much as I love this look, I don’t think I’ll be buying the clothes anytime soon, the choice of colours is not really ‘me’. However, I will be definitely hitting Claire’s and grabbing those sunnies!

Scene three was ‘Heritage’, and showcased mostly autumnal colours such as brown, orange and tan, as well as autumn’s must have: the tweed jacket. Here is a video of the ‘Heritage’ scene (ignore my hand shaking about, and the heads of those in front!) Enjoy!

‘Forties Flair’ is another Autumn/Winter’ trend which graced the Bullring catwalk. Think faux fur stoles, plenty of grey hues and polka dot designs!

As you can see, I have included some of the men’s looks too, for all you male readers out there! Guys, take inspiration from 1940’s music icons such as American clarinettist Artie Shaw and other jazz artists.

Another one of my favourite scenes was ‘Mannish’. I love the masculine look, which has been seen on hot celebrities such as Ellie Goulding and Fearne Cotton. So I couldn’t resist sharing this picture that I took of this model donning an all-black mannish outfit.


The leather coat is a bit too pricey and long for a shorty like me, but I do love how incorporating a classic black long coat with a masculine touch of leather can instantly make you bang on-trend!

Deliciously-styled ‘Decadence’, was the penultimate scene of the show. Think teal and green hued dresses, blazers and for men, hoodies!
This look was all about elegance, with an attention to blue and green colours and gold accessorising. I especially love the gold clutch on image two! This trend for men is pretty simple to achieve, try mixing the above colours with suit jackets and denim jeans for a casual on-trend look.  Girls, stick to one colour and accessorize with gold jewellery, bags and shoes to achieve the ‘Decadence’ trend.

And finally, ‘Feathers and Fur’ was the last scene to grace the runway. This trend is all about clashing textures (feathers and fur), such as sporting a faux fur coat from Republic with a Topshop feather Alice band, or if you want to keep it simple, stick to accessories such as this brown £16 faux fur headband from Miss Selfridge and an Urban Outfitters feather necklace for only £20.

I love this picture because of the clashing textures, which breaks all of the typical ‘fashion rules’! Many people have believed for years that you are not meant to mix prints, textures or colours, but for the past two or so seasons, it seems that today’s generation of designers are forming a rebellion and creating a new direction for fashion to grow.

It seemed fitting that this last trend ended the fashion show as all of these trends do redefine fashion. This is after all, the show’s title.

And just when you think you had the fashion rulebook sussed…

Look out for part 3 of Style Birmingham in the near future  Trust me; you wouldn’t want to miss it!

 (All pictures were taken by me)

Here is another new feature for The Live Scene, called Steal Her Style. I will choose a style icon, and scour the web to try and find something similar to what she is wearing, so you can dress like your favourite celeb!

One of my favourite style icons is Katy Perry. She just oozes sexiness and is one of my not-so-secret girl crushes! From her unique stage outfits (she never wears the same outfit twice when she’s performing) to trips to the shop, Katy is the definition of someone who does not follow the fashion crowd.

So for my first ‘Steal Her Style’ outfit, I thought i should try and find similar items to what Katy wore to Coachella Festival in April this year. Katy clearly went for the minimal look with her white lace maxi peplum dress and her few accessories. Her outfit goes to show that you don’t need to ‘dress up’ at a festival and that with one on-trend piece; you can be an instant winner in the eyes of fashion critics everywhere.

Here is what Katy wore on the left-hand side of the image, and what I found similar on the right-hand side:
katyperryCream Lace Peplum Dress, £10, Dorothy Perkins – Even though I couldn’t find a lace maxi peplum dress, this was the next best thing and for £10, this Dorothy Perkins dress is definitely worth it! LWDs (little white dresses) were all over the Spring/Summer 2011 catwalks with Adam by Adam Lippes, Af Vandevorst and Vivienne Westwood boasting their own take on the stylish trend. This goes to show that you don’t need a maxi à la Perry to rock the festival look, just look at how Adam Lippes’ LWD can do it!

Spotty Bow Head wrap, £3.99, New Look – Quirky headbands have been in fashion since 2009 when Louis Vuitton made his models stroll down the runway with giant ‘bunny’ headbands on. Since then, the headbands have gotten smaller and more colourful, from floral prints to polka dot denim – the high street stores took note and made Louis Vuitton’s headbands more accessible. I was glad when Katy showcased her polka dot headband at Coachella as I found this very similar New Look headband, which at £3.99 will give Katy a run for her money!

Black Cat Eye Sunglasses, £5, Dorothy Perkins – Katy has always been a fan of cat eye sunglasses from promoting her singles in London to jogging in LA, they seem to be one of her favourite accessories. So I had to include these in Steal Her Style! Despite Katy sporting some very nice black oversized sunnies, I opted for these cheap cat eye ones from Dorothy Perkins instead.

Mega Pearl Rope Necklace, £8, Dorothy Perkins – Due to the intricate lace pattern on her peplum dress, Katy chose to add minimal accessories to her look, such as a long pearl necklace. I came across this chic necklace from you guessed it – Dorothy Perkins – for a small £8! This fits the bill perfectly!

Beige Jean Belt, £18, River Island – Katy has got an amazing body, so she had to show off her curves in this maxi dress somehow! By wearing a beige and cream skinny belt, Katy can not only look tall and elegant, but nice and curvy too. This £18 beige jean belt from River Island is similar to Katy’s with the pearly detailed section, and they match the necklace too!

Gold Plaited Strap Sandals, £28, Dorothy Perkins – The last fashion piece to achieve Katy Perry’s look are these wonderful gold plaited strap sandals. Katy wears very light gold sandals, however these ones brighten your outfit up whilst making you look like Grecian goddess like model Hilary Rhoda. At £28, these are the most expensive item on the list. However, these sandals are perfect for summer (while it’s still here) and they don’t break the budget too much.

That is my very first Steal Her Style feature done and I would be very grateful if you could all tell me what you think of it? Hopefully this will end up being a regular fashion feature like This Week’s Wishlist.

This week I decided to raid the Urban Outfitters website. As per-usual, they never fail to deliver when it comes to producing exotic, sought-after items.

As you can see, I love the UO headgear! With the majority of famous festivals occurring this week, I thought the ‘festival’ theme would work perfectly with the three outfits I have created.

Ps.
Apologies for the sudden lack of posts! I have been very busy these past couple of weeks due to having a massive clear-out. However, I have been brewing more blog ideas, so look forward to those in the next coming weeks!

Here are the items from clockwise-round:

Outfit 1
Straw Hat with Grosgrain Band, £20 – I’m not usually a hat person, apart from the odd winter beanie hat and ‘cowboy’ hat for a fancy dress night out. However, with festival season here, what item is better for protecting your hair from the sun than a nice, simple, straw hat like this one?

BDG Breezy Boyfriend Shirt, £38 – I love, love, love this shirt! I’m usually a check shirt sort-of-girl but I couldn’t let this stripy boyfriend shirt pass me by. This, tucked into the gorgeous denim shorts below makes for a style-savvy festival outfit.

Bitching & Junkfood Feather Pocket Shorts, £70 – Okay, so £70 is a bit steep for denim shorts. However, they’re no ordinary denim shorts. They’re denim shorts WITH feathers on the pockets. This will definitely make you stand out from the crowd at your local music gathering!

Hunter Tall Original Boot, £40 Kate Moss is one notable fashionista who made these boots catch the spotlight when she went to Glastonbury Festival all those years ago. Other celebs followed suit, and now everyone who can afford these babies now owns a pair. Originally £69, these wellingtons have now been reduced to a more reasonable price of £40. Jackpot!

Outfit 2
Bitching & Junkfood Rose Crochet Headdress, £115 – This Bitching & Junkfood headdress may be expensive, but feather headdresses are the future according to Bitching & Junkfood designers; Marion and Kath. This headdress would be perfect for any festival you go to, plus it makes you stand out from the crowd. Headdresses are beginning to get so popular even Primark has a £2 version of a feather headdress!

Kimchi & Blue Daisy Playsuit, £55 – LWDs (Little White Dresses) took the Spring/Summer 2011 catwalks by storm with designers such as Gucci and Givenchy creating simple and sophisticated white dresses which can either be dressed up for night time or dressed down. Seeing as I like to be a bit different, I decided to settle on this LWP (Little White Playsuit) which will probably get muddy at festivals, but I am sure as hell will look good!

Stag Bunny & Owl Rings, £14 – As you all know, I love my jewellery at the moment, and whilst I like to keep this outfit simple, I think a few rings will complete the outfit. These cute rings, which come in a pack of three (hence the price), stacked on one finger will show festi-goers that I mean business in the fashion stakes!

Tan Bead Cuff Sandal, £18 – I instantly fell in love with these sandals as soon as I saw them on the UO website. They were originally £38, so for £18, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to incorporate these into my second outfit.

Outfit 3
Floppy Bow Hat, £22 – This web exclusive is just up my hat street! It’s different and has a sort of ‘seventies’ feel which is what I am basing this third outfit on.

Plastic Wing Frame Sunglasses, £16 – Ever since I saw Katy Perry sport these sunnies, I couldn’t help but want my own pair! These, teamed with the floppy bow hat not only protect you from the sun, but will make you the envy of your friends’ á la Katy Perry style.

Boy London Leave the Boy Alone Tee, £35 – Simple logo tees are the base for a stylish and simple outfit. This, tucked into the polka dot wide legged trousers below, will modernise this ‘seventies’ outfit without making you look like a Desperate Housewife in the process.

Pins & Needles Polka Dot Wide Legged Trousers, £60 – These wide legged trousers are the essence of this ‘seventies’ outfit. The polka dot pattern makes me feel all summery, and this teamed with the nude lace up peep toe shoes is perfect for a special summer occasion.

Deena & Ozzy Nude Lace up Peep Toe Shoes, £50– Originally £95, now reduced to £50, is the final item which completes this outfit. I would have gone for flats if I wasn’t a shorty. These shoe boots can be dressed up for a night out in the town or can be dressed down such as this outfit for a nice summer pub lunch.

There you have it! This week’s Urban Outfitters wishlist has now been complete. Look forward to next week’s wishlist which includes three outfits I have created from diverse store; Republic.