ON MY RADAR

Friday, 17 February 2017

Lace up Jeans





Well happy frigging Friday all! This week has been manic. It's been retail overload because I've been covering people at work whilst they are on holiday at the moment. Fingers crossed I'm going to shoot some more outfits over the weekend if the weather is alright! I'm itching to use my camera! 
So this outfit was actually taken a couple of weeks ago when Matt and I went to London for the day and also had Afternoon Tea at the Selfridges Roof Top restaurant. It was honestly SO DAMN GOOD! There was such a good variety of cakes and plenty of it (we took half of it home which made the perfect midnight snack that evening!) It was £45 with the service charge for the both of us and I can't wait to go back again after they have done some refurbishing. 

Okay so I have been obsessed with all these pink and minky colours at the moment! This faux fur coat from In the Style had been on my wishlist for a while so after holding out for a couple of weeks I had the fuck it attitude and bought it (I did think about it for some and it wasn't some spontaneous purchase okay!) 

So Is it worth over £50? I need to point out that it's not a thick heavy faux fur coat and it's rather lightweight. Some people may love that (including myself because I normally get boiling in coats), but then I can imagine people thinking this may lack quality because the material feels rather thin. Me personally I was happy paying this just because this is such a nice unique colour. Plus I have just spotted Topshop stocking a coat this exactly colour for almost £90, so this one is much cheaper! I'm wearing the M (8-10) from In the Style and would say thats the perfect fit if you are size 10! Size up if you prefer the oversized look.

I really wanted to go out of my comfort zone and try a new colour for the top half. Normally I just stick to greys, whites and blacks for tops because I like to make my jackets do the talking. On this occasion, this pinky peach bodysuit from Missguided was perfect! I love the criss cross front and its easy to wear for day or night looks. If you are 5 ft 8 or if you have a long torso, this may be rather uncomfortable to wear, the torso is so short on this sadly! 

I also need to express my love for these Missguided Vice lace up jeans! I'm normally a loyal Topshop Joni jean fan when it comes to denim and I'm very stubborn when it comes to trying new jeans. I normally wear size 8 in Topshop Joni and I went for the same size in these and would say they are pretty accurate if you want a skin tight feel. These do stretch a bit more and after a couple of wears I already think they need to tighten in the wash again but the lace up front make these so comfy to wear! You could literally wear these to a buffet because you can adjust the laces to your desired waist fit! Absolute genius! I want to get more colours when they come back in stock (fingers crossed!) 

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Coat - In the Style (Can also buy it here and here)
Bodysuit - Missguided 
Jeans - Missguided 
Boots - New Look 
Pom Pom Keyring - New Look (similar here
Sunglasses - Quay Australia 
Bag - From Holiday 

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Sunday, 5 February 2017

Brands and Regrams



I want to firstly say I am proper kicking myself because I originally typed this post on my laptop before it had to go back to factory settings. It was a post that flowed in my head, and all the words came to me and I just saved it in notes, but didn't saved it on blogger. DAMMIT! Oh well you can only live and learn!
So this topic has been bothering me for some time, and it's something that I know upsets me and several other bloggers every, single, day. I even posted about it on twitter and it was one of my most engaged tweets so I'm definitely not alone with this! Today is all about the blasted regrams, and how they affect me as a blogger. 

So take this scenario for example. You have worked with a brand for well over two years. You assume they like your work because they keep sending you items and even pay you when campaigns come around. But they have never regrammed any of your photographs OR if they ever have, it has never been one that includes your full body or your face (for example a shoes pic or flat lay). 
But can I also point out, this brand may regram a small handful of bloggers over and over again. Like it's some kind of Instagram clique which gets rather repetitive. 

This is when my brain goes into overdrive and I have to question what I might be doing wrong so then all I can do is compare. So these are the thoughts that literally go through my head as to why I think brands never like to regram me. 

'Is it because I'm not size 8?'

Let's just say I don't think I have ever been a size 8. Even when I was 8 years old I was 8 stone! I have always struggled with my weight which has lead to disorders and over exercising. But I always wonder if brands promoting this particular size is healthy for our young audiences. I just don't get why brands can't regram girls of ALL SHAPES AND SIZES! I'm talking sizes smaller than an 8 going all the way up to 16, 18 +. If someone is rocking an outfit then the size of their body shouldn't matter! But no, I have to type on here feeling guilty about the pizza I just ate, seeing the same similar body shapes on my feed time and time again *sigh*. 

So then I also think: 

'Is it because I don't have an Instagram worthy white bedroom?'

So I've noticed that the same girls who tend to get regrammed all have something in common. A pure white backdrop, maybe white, wooden floorboards, and a crisp, clean made up bed which looks like no-one has even slept in it. It's frustrating but I can understand why these full length mirror selfies in the bedroom work because it makes the outfit do the talking. I can't talk, I also have an Instagram theme myself and I do post outfits with white backdrops and they still seem to let me down. Maybe it's because the bed isn't on show. Maybe the white background with nothing in it is considered boring. 

So my last and final thought is:

'Is it because my hair is short?' 

If I ever want to change my hair, it will be for myself and for no one else! I don't really suit long, nor have I ever liked styling my hair, hence why short hair for me is perfect and I'll probably have a short haircut for the rest of my life. I understand that longer hair will always be the more popular option, but I sometimes think because my hair is short it also makes me less...relatable? Personally I think it's boring seeing all the same hairstyles and the usual blonde or brunette balayage locks floating around. It takes me back to my first rant. Why not post a mixture of blooming everything?! I'm not surprised teenagers feels so much pressure to look a certain way, and certain brands are definitely to blame for this! 

Chances are.. it's probably my purple hair that clashes with their feed *roll eyes* 

But to put it bluntly there are sometimes very valid reasons why a photograph may not get regrammed. One of those being that the item you have featured for a brand is out of stock. Whenever I work with a brand I always try to pick something that has a massive size range in stock, so when it does get posted on my Instagram, I know that it's still shoppable for my audience. It's such a sinking feeling when a blogger promotes something, only to find out that it's sold out waaah! A brand won't want to feature an item that's sold out so I always say the sooner you feature the item the better. 

The other reason is simply because whoever runs the Instagram for these brands either hasn't noticed your photograph, or literally because they do not have time to regram everyone. 

I still don't think that's a good enough excuse if a brand is posting the same people over and over again (like they don't have enough bloggers to feature, poor excuse). 

And before anyone jumps down my throat, I'm not having a go at the people who do always get featured. They must be doing something right and it works for them so they should totally stick with it and keep up the good work! I just wish brands reached out to a larger blogging audience and had more variety of who they put on their feed. 

The only reason I'm having a dig at this is because regrams are so important and some bloggers have got to where they are today with the help of being featured. The algorithm now makes it harder for bloggers to get noticed on people's news feeds now. Of course it isn't the end of the world if a brand doesn't regram, but it's always a very rewarding feeling when you have been and the recognition goes a long way. Whenever a brand has ever featured me, I get a sense of knowing that I've done something right, when I normally like to put myself down d'oh! 

I think the best thing to do to overcome all of this is just contact a brand and either make an agreement that you get the photograph approved so they are happy to regram it. Or simply ask them if there is anything you can do to increase your chances, e.g. improve the photography, shoot outside or inside and outside etc. 

Although I did message a brand that I'd worked with from the early days of blogging, and I got no reply back :(

Wish you guys the best of luck and I hope one day brands realise that what they are doing is going to have a serious impact on the younger generation.

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Jumper - Zara (similar here) 
Blouse - New Look  
Trousers - Zara (similar here) 
Necklaces - Boohoo 
Boots - Zara old (similar here) 
Sunglasses (*) - Frames Direct
Bag - From holiday! 

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Sunday, 29 January 2017

PINK TEDDY


Evening all!! So I've been trying to get on this blogging ball and slowly getting used to my new camera. It is a beast of a camera to be fair! But it's just finding the time to actually watch tutorials and understand the ins and outs of it, plus learning lightroom and photoshop (wish me luck!). I'm so impatient I just expect to learn things or see changes quickly but I know something like photo editing can't be rushed! 

The weather was perfect for this outfit though! Not a cloud in the sky. The lighting was better than it normally has been, but it sure was chilly! I got sent this amazing pink and black speckled teddy coat from the Boohoo team. It's so snuggly and has an oversized fit, but I like that. Boohoo currently have the best teddy coat selection in my eyes, plus most of them are under £50 so they are pretty reasonably priced. 
I always like pink and silver together, hence why I opted for the Public Desire silver patent boots. I got sent these as a surprise gift before Xmas and it goes to show that the PD team know me so well! Makes a nice change to all my black boots! Plus I tried to make the effort by making the boots match my New Look necklaces and the Zara studded bag. I have to admit, I am loving New Look jewellery right now! They have some really pretty dainty pieces and these necklaces are currently in the sale! I never like spending loads on fashion jewellery (probably because I lose everything) so I don't feel too bad if I ever have to replace anything! 

I've got a personal post coming up next though! Something I really need to get off my chest and I hope some of you might be able to relate to it (especially if you are also a blogger). Watch this space!

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Coat (*) - Boohoo 
Boots (*) - Public Desire 
Jumper - (Old similar here) 
Jeans - Topshop 
Bag - Zara (similar here)
Necklaces - New Look 
Pom Pom Keyring - New Look (sold out similar here) 

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Friday, 20 January 2017

How I style the Velvet padded Jacket

January is a bit of a funny month isn't it? I feel like in this month we can be in a great frame of mind to set new goals but on the other hand some things can feel rather slow and demotivating in this dull month. I feel like right now I'm in a good mindset to start the 5:2 diet again (I do it more for disciplining myself than the losing weight part..although losing half a stone would be fab!), and I have been really eager to shoot outfits, but then last Monday my laptop broke and I literally felt like I wanted to throw the towel in. I was just dreading how much it was going to cost to fix (bare in mind I did spend a grand and a half on a camera last month). Luckily it got fixed when I went to Milton Keynes the other day and I only had to replace the hard drive (thank the lord it only cost me £140!) I think now that I've got a working camera and now a working laptop I'm just hoping to get my creative juices flowing again! My other goal this year would be to learn Photoshop and Lightroom so I'm hoping to make a start on that next week on one of my days off. I feel like now that I've got this advanced full frame camera, I really do need to fully understand it and I want to learn the process on how to give my photographs its best finished edit. 

So I am sure you have seen floating around all of these padded jackets or maybe even velvet padded jackets! I was rather against these to be fair, considering I am a jacket person and my wardrobe is over flowing with different styles, however this padded style jacket hasn't really tempted me, nor have I found one that I've really fallen for. 

But then I came across this Boohoo grey velvet padded jacket and thought it had some potential. 

I have to admit, by getting the size down, its a massive yes from me! 
It's genuinely such a nice thick warm jacket but I didn't feel like I was melting in it! It also comes in a deep green colour and a bright pink! I have been obsessed with grey this season so I honestly can't fault this! 
I actually really struggled and had creative fog when I thinking of a way to style this jacket. After looking through my old feed (I like to see how I've styled jackets in the past) and with some help from google, I opted for the velvet cami over the white top combo!!

This set together does seem to work for almost any outfit and thats because monochrome match is rather flattering on the top half of the body! Me personally I also prefer thin layering compared to a heavy chunky knit because I hate the feeling of being restricted if I can't move my arms with all the thick clothing! 
I am also loving these New Look boots that I got for Christmas! They have only just gone into sale but I think all sizes are in stock! The simple zip is nice feature and makes them easy to wear with all my outfits!

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Velvet Jacket - Boohoo
Necklace - Boohoo
Velvet Cami - ASOS (similar here)
White Top - ASOS (similar here)
Trousers - Zara (similar here)
Boots - New Look 
Bag - Zara (similar here)
Grey Pom Pom - New Look (similar here) 
Sunglasses (*) - D&G at The Sunglasses Shop

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Friday, 13 January 2017

Vivichi


Evening all! First of all I want to apologise for the delay of my first post for 2017! My camera gave up on me before Christmas and it took some time trying to find the camera I was after but for a good price. But I feel like I am getting back on the blogging roll again and can't wait to show you guys what I've got planned for this year!

So this is my first outfit and my first brand collaboration with a fashion brand called Vivichi! I had the challenge to style this gorgeous mocha ripped jumper! I have seen a few of these ripped jumpers floating around but I was really drawn to this colour and love that its not a bodycon fit. I prefer my jumpers to be slightly slouchy and this style ticks the box! If you aren't a fan of this colour then they also stock this jumper in black, nude and mint! 

I'm also wearing their Bands of Humanity bracelet which I'm really fond of. I like the double leather strap feature and the gold charms add some colour and shine (if you look closely it does say Bands of Humanity engraved). This bracelet is to represent and symbolise unity and a way to show your support for a better world. A world that is more accepting of all races, ethnicities and culture. On top of all of this, Vivichi also donate 10% of all their profits to charity. They also stock this bracelet in silver and it would look great with a watch for some added arm candy! 

So I decided to style this jumper with my trusty old River Island fur coat. I'm trying to make the effort to wear more of my older clothes in my blog posts, just because I'm not ready to clear some of my wardrobe out and I can always link similar items below. I remember this coat was pretty expensive at the time and I love the texture on this and the oversized fit. 
I also noticed that I haven't worn knee high boots in a while so I'm wearing my trusty Janine Boots which I was sent from Public Desire last year. Luckily they are still in stock! Its great that you can tie them up at the top of the boot for a secure fit. 

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Jumper (*) and Bracelet (*) - Vivichi 
Sunglasses (*) - Dolce and Gabana from The Sunglasses Shop 
Boots (*) - Public Desire 
Coat - River Island old
Jeans - Topshop
Bag - From Holiday 


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Thursday, 29 December 2016

Blogging full time isn't always the dream!


This is a post that's been really bugging me and I've been wanting to express my feelings for some time. I couldn't rush into this post until I knew if I had made the right decision or not. 
Back in the summer I wrote a post called 'How working from home has ruined me mentally'. To save you reading the post, after I quit Topshop in May 2014 I jumped in at the deep end and went head first into the blogging world with no job on the sidelines. I have NO REGRETS with my decision and luckily I had a bit of savings to live off to start with, but it gave me time for my blog to grow and I learnt many ways that bloggers can turn their hobby into a business. Now I'm going to be honest with you, to say you 'blog full time' can feel very ego boosting. If someone had said to me 10 years ago that I was going to work for myself I wouldn't have believed them. I mean, from an outsider looking in, that person is earning a living,  doing what they love and they are earning their money all by themselves, choosing what hours they can work and GEE WHIZZ that sounds like the dream! I thought it was the dream to begin with. But for anyone who wishes they could blog full time or have been considering taking the jump, let me tell you this. 

Blogging full time isn't for everyone and just because you can blog full time doesn't automatically mean that your blog will be better or more successful than someone who has another job at the same time as blogging. 

The biggest difference when you can blog full time is, that, yes you have all the time in the world. That doesn't mean you are going to use your time well. At the start I was really excited and I felt super productive and it was fun and very rewarding. But you have to somehow stay motivated and productive through the tough times too. When you feel like you are going through a rough patch, and money is tight, or your self esteem is low, you somehow have to get up and work. Or you can go back to bed because thats easier than facing the blogging world. And repeat... 

Just because you HAVE more time to blog doesn't mean you are going to use your time more effectively. Take the Germans for example, who only work on a 30 hour contract, but they work more efficiently and effectively than us on a 40 hour contract. They get shit done and have a better life/work balance. When you blog full time you are with your own thoughts 24/7. It's literally the only thing you can think and stress about. Training yourself to switch off from work is a skill that not everyone can achieve, especially if you have an addictive personality like myself. It's very hard to switch off when you want a good old rant to someone, but most days you talk to your pet cat more than your own boyfriend! 

Whilst I was blogging, the only people I would talk to most days, face to face would be my Mum and my sister in the evenings. I would see my boyfriend two or three times a week and that was probably the only time I would get out of the house. I had no other reason to get in my car and drive anywhere when I had all my work back at home. This made me feel so isolated and extremely lonely. So. So. Lonely. I had experienced depression in the past and I was also suffering in this period too but I also developed anxiety which I would never want anyone to go through. I was constantly stuck in my own thoughts, getting easily distracted, always feeling irritable and paranoid. In the end I imagined a dark cloud always hovering above my house, plus it also affected how I interacted with friends when we planned a catch up. I remember bursting into tears in front of my two best friends after a lovely weekend away because I had been feeling so low. I look back and I know my head was in a total mind fuck. Anxiety mixed with depression means your head is always feeling friction. It took me a few months to accept it, but I knew I needed to get a part time job somewhere. 

Soooo for nearly three months I have been working in retail part time. My manager is really understanding about my blog and I don't think my shifts have so far clashed with any events in London, nor have I had to work on many weekends. I know some people would say working in retail is stressful and not very enjoyable but so far, *touch wood* I have been the happiest I have been this year! Having a part time job means I have a purpose to get out of the house, and its given me back my confidence because I genuinely love talking to customers and the staff. Because my time is limited now for blog work, I use my time more effectively. I have to plan my week and use every second I have away from retail to work on my blog. Yes I am feeling a lot more physically shattered but when your boyfriend says 'you are back to your old self' you know this has been a good decision. I'm also worrying about money a lot less, knowing that I will always have consistent money coming in. I really do feel like I've got the balance just right. 

Of course some people really suit blogging full time and the ones that are currently doing this I salute you! I know its blooming hard work and as long as you are enjoying it then I'm happy for you! HOPEFULLY I would love to go back into full time blogging when Matt and I have finally bought somewhere to live. I would like to think I would be in a better financial situation and at least then I would have my own work space and I would be living with my partner in crime so maybe one day it will all happen again. 

I think if you are going to consider going into full time blogging please think about these questions:

- Are you going to be okay with your income being different every month, or is that going to stress you out? Financial stability can play a massive part on your mental health. 

- Do you enjoy your own company or are you quite sociable and prefer to work in a team? 

- Do you have a house to yourself or are you still living with your parents?

- Can you easily motivate yourself?

- Can you accept that most days you will be talking to your pet more than an actual human being (no joke, my cat Katie was literally my best friend throughout this process *face palm* ) 


I think to conclude, timing is key. When I was at Topshop I was on part time hours but I had been in that job for three years and blogging was something I really wanted to focus all my time on. I've had that time to build it up and I'm so happy with what I've achieved in that time. But before you can think of any career, you need to think about you and your own well-being first. 

I wish everyone a fantastic New Year and bring on 2017!!

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Coat - H&M (similar here and here
Jumper - ASOS 
Trousers - Zara (similar here)
Boots - Zara old (similar here)
Bag - Primark (similar here) 
Pom pom Keyring - New Look (similar here)
Sunglasses - Quay Australia 


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