Now you all know I’m a huge Boden fan, and it’s that time of year again when they’re releasing gorgeous pictures of all their beautiful beach and holiday ranges. I love Boden for great quality, bold patterns, awesome design and just a little hint of British quirkiness. As an added bonus, from now until tomorrow, Sunday 11th June, there’s 30% off dresses, (including playsets and rompers), accessories (non-footwear), boys’ trousers and menswear with code: 6T2C. Here’s my pick of Boden’s holiday heroes – get those credit cards at the ready!
Did you know that over the past few years, sales of swimwear have soared? I think it’s gone from one of those pieces that we might have one or two of, to a wardrobe staple that we might own in several different styles and colours. We’re also spending more money on beachwear than ever before, so this sector of the fashion market is booming. Interestingly, the strongest growth in sales has come from women buying bikinis, with sales of two pieces representing 68% of all sales for the swimwear sector! But what about if, like me, you’ve got hips and a bum, and maybe a bit of a tummy too – is a bikini for you? If you’re planning to hit the beach this summer, here are my tips on buying a bikini if you’re curvy. Read more
Now I know I said recently that my obsession with all things cute and floral was fleeting, but there’s so much lovely stuff in the shops at the moment, I fear my monochrome madness might have to be put on hold for a while longer. Everywhere I look there’s embroidery and splashes of colour, and as the sun has come out at least twice, and a lot of us are planning our summer getaways, it just somehow seems right. Here’s my weekend wishlist of flirty florals:
I’m such a monochrome shopper it’s not even right. Absolutely everything I purchase (apart from denim) is black, white, or grey, so my current obsession with everything nude and blush has kind of caught me by surprise. Although, I guess nude is a neutral, so by rights my wardrobe should all still fit together, no?
I spend so much money on products that aren’t right for me. My worst one was getting my foundation done at the Chanel counter at Gatwick, then purchasing the product and not realising until I went to the loo on the plane and looked in the mirror that my face was literally orange (top tip, try to approach someone on a make-up counter whose own make-up style you really like). I have to say, though, that when I took it back to the Chanel counter at John Lewis, they changed it for me. I also find I make a lot of mistakes buying online, with products not being the right colour or texture for me. Happily, though, I occasionally have some amazingly good accidental discoveries, and I’m on a roll recently, so I thought I’d share them with you.
I’ve never really been a chunky jewellery person, bar the odd feathery bit of boho jewellery on the beach. I love sweet, delicate pieces: a sliver of gold around the neck that catches the light, or a flash of glitter in the ear caught just as you push your hair back. This weekend’s wishlist features the absolutely stunning range from Rachel Jackson London available at John Lewis.
…today in the form of a few gorgeous bits from HomeSense. I love it now Mr E isn’t based up in Scotland any more. We had such a lovely weekend, full of walks and trashy telly and a delicious slow roasted lamb dinner (that the boys re-heated at approximately 11.30pm – I’ve given up trying to get them to have dinner with us every Sunday – their social lives are just too busy). We also had a lovely pootle around HomeSense on Saturday, trying to get a few ideas to warm up the house ready for a cosy Christmas. Here’s what I picked up…
Last week I was delighted to be invited to the opening of a new Dunelm superstore in nearby Aylesbury. I like Aylesbury for shopping and the little Broadfields retail park there is already one of my favourite shopping spots, with a huge Next store including furniture, and a great T K Maxx. There are also rumours of a new M&S Food going into the final empty space, which would make me very happy indeed. If you read about my visit to the new Wycombe store, Dunelm are really reinventing themselves, with beautiful new interiors and displays that wouldn’t be out of place in John Lewis or Marks and Spencer.
There are lots of lovely things afoot at hush at the moment, including snuggly new PJ and luxury loungewear sets, delicious new underwear and, as always, beautifully soft knitwear including this little beauty, the Claire jumper, that I recently took to Boston – here it is, teamed with some coated skinnies (these are Next ones, but Boden do lovely waxed skinnies – currently with 25% off) on a breezy beach walk in Plymouth Massachusetts. So soft and comfortable. As an extra bonus, the hush flash sale is live from today until 30th with something like 80 lines discounted up to 64% (extra 10% on the Sunday!), so it’s just £55 at the moment! Read more
So it seems that when I left it was high summer, and I’ve arrived back well into autumn. My first dog walk was a bit of a revelation: blackberry bushes a mass of gorgeous, ripe fruit and burnished leaves on the trees already! If you follow me on Instagram you’ll have seen my current favourite new autumnal nail colour (556 in Grenat Irreverent – which incidentally smells lovely – kind of like parma violets) and I’ve also noticed new AW16 pieces from hush – hurrah!
So a while back, when I was telling you about Christmas in July, I mentioned that I’d bumped into the lovely guys from hush homewear at the John Lewis Christmas event, where they were celebrating their new partnership (hush concessions will be opening in the Birmingham, Chelmsford, Leeds, Oxford Street and Peter Jones stores) and caught a sneaky peek of the new hush autumn 2016 collection. Today, though, there’s even more excitement as it’s time to get a proper look at the gorgeousness. Hurrah! Mr E and I were only saying the other day that it seems weird, given the current scorchio weather, that there are blackberries on the bushes and machines in the fields finishing the harvest. I don’t feel like I’m properly done with summer yet, but then I look at all the lovely new collections and think that maybe it will be nice when autumn arrives after all!
So Waitrose have launched a whole lot of yummy food, which they’ve called the Waitrose 1 range, which is basically the creme de la creme of their food: think stylish ready meals, amazing coffees, buttery pastries, extra special meats, fab pizzas, delicious ice creams… Just before I went to Leeds, I went to our local Waitrose and bought an absolute ton of all the Waitrose 1 stuff so I could give it a little try.
If you love hush as much as I do, you’ll be delighted to know that they’ve just announced an exciting 20% off flash pre-sale on their summer stock. This is quite rare so if you’ve had your eye on anything for a while, it’s time to log on and grab it now! The flash pre-sale at hush only lasts until midnight on June 30th, so don’t delay!
So in the spirit of my positive life plan, I thought I’d have a few words about the dreaded b-word, and why we ALL should be wearing one if we want to. I’m no expert, but here’s my 40-something guide to feeling fab in a bikini, and why I won’t be rolling out the swimming costumes any time soon!
Last year, Boden released a limited, special edition collection called Boden ICONS. The capsule collection of cool British premium items was snapped up quickly, so I was delighted to see it back again this year. I’d seen little snippets online but the full collection is utterly breathtaking. If you want one of the pieces, flex that credit card and get over to Boden’s website stat. These pieces won’t last long. Read more
See what I did there?
On Tuesday, I hot footed it to High Wycombe to attend the opening of the new Dunelm store in High Wycombe. If, like me, you’ve mostly used Dunelm in the past when you needed a new doormat or washing up bowl, you won’t believe the difference. Existing Dunelm stores are having major refurbishments done, and new ones are light, bright, modern and user-friendly.
- Weekend wishlist: the summer kitchen roundup July 22, 2017
- The positive life plan: self July 20, 2017
- News from D23 Expo: what’s coming up at Walt Disney World, Florida July 18, 2017
- Top activities for adrenaline junkies July 17, 2017
- Weekend wishlist: the new hush late summer mini collection July 15, 2017