Sunday, 24 June 2012

The beanie is back

Ah what rubbish weather we've all been having. A night out in Shoreditch this weekend posed a number of problems - what is appropriate footwear, how can I have my hair still looking good and how can I combine comfort with my usual Saturday night attire? The great thing about East London is its very relaxed, 'anything goes' attitude to dressing. A prime example being this week when I walked past a suit, a Hoxtonite in High Tops with neon hair, and a hippy walking around with a wooden rake. Nobody batted an eyelid, and that is what I love about this amazing city. 

Coming from a small town in the North East of Scotland, the opportunity to wear and do as you please in both Glasgow and London over the years has been great and really allows me to push the fashion boundaries, without fear of being mocked a la small narrow minded hometown. Lately, I've been finding a more 'relaxed' style, what with all the walking you have to do in the Smoke, walking around in five inch heels just isn't a practical option. 

With this in mind, at the moment, I am obsessed with hip hop beanie hats, as worn by the likes of TLC and the hip hop stars of the 90s. I love the way you can take a simple beanie hat and transform an outfit and also brave the elements and be comfortable. Seen on the likes of Gwen Stefani in her No Doubt days, musical legend Kurt Cobain to Rita Ora and Rihanna today, the beanie always appears on the scene every few years making it undoubtedly a key accessory for us to have in our wardrobes...

Kurt Cobain

Rita Ora in a Trapstar beanie hat

Rita Ora in a Coney Island beanie hat

I've worn a few beanie hats in my Art student days, and would combine them with leather jackets and bright playsuits. Now, I like to don my beanie hat with glam jewellery, and a mix of textiles and monochrome...

Beanie June 2012

Vintage corset, chiffon Zara top, H&M cuffs, Monki necklace, Primark heels, Primark black patent stilettos, Topshop wool beanie

Glasgow Uni student days, 2006 

Fashion always proves itself to be circular, as you can see from what I wore in 2006 to what I'm wearing six years later. I love the simplicity of a beanie, and its ability to pull an outfit together. A key tip is, as with my previous post discussing how to utilise your boyfriend's shirt this season, is to buy a male beanie hat as they tend to be more loose allowing you to curl your hair or pin up some victory curls - another current favourite of mines and a really simple way to combine vintage style with modernity. 

As we move into August, beanie hats will be everywhere. See some of my favourites on the High Street below...

ASOS Aztec beanie, £10
ASOS Navy fluoro stripe beanie, £6

River Island grey knit beanie, £8

Trapstar beanie hat - can be purchased on Ebay for varying prices

Another cheap and easy uplift to your wardrobe this Autumn - or Summer should the weather continue to be awful. I love a fashion item that is both functional and stylish, which the beanie hat proves to be. Now I'm off to scour my very own Trapstar beanie hat!


Thursday, 21 June 2012

A fashion staple...

What a wet, miserable week it is in London town. Two maxi skirts and three pairs of sodden flats later, this weather really limits my fashion choices, as I imagine it does any other fashion conscious lady out there. 

So - in a hot, muggy city climate such as London, what do you wear to combat the horrible weather and make for a non sweaty betty, whilst being style conscious at the same? Why, the classic white shirt of course. 

It started when I stole my mum's white work shirt at the age of 14. When paired with my blue skinny jeans and metallic 'Sienna Miller' - esque sandals, I loved the lady-like way in which it made me appear, even in my school days. Now I take to nicking my boyfriend's white shirt, and when working as a professional in London, it really helps to be able to project a sense of professionalism yet still retaining that creative air that works in my field. Therefore, I mix up my white shirt these days with chunky, gangster necklaces (a style staple of mines) with zebra print skirts, metallic shoes and fruit print leggings. 

Pioneered by the likes of Coco Chanel, the white shirt has the ability to tone down an outfit, add a sense of effortless 'chic' cool and enable a woman to go from work to club, the choices a classic white shirt offers are endless. From Coco to an Olsen, any female can wear this shirt instilling a sense of confidence rarely found in any other fashion item in their closet...

Fashion pioneer and icon Coco Chanel 
Elizabeth Olsen 

See some Glorious Garments tips below on what to pair your classic white shirt with, dependent on the look you're after:

Quirky cool:

Combine your white shirt with pattern and colour to get the right quirky cool look. Team with big, bold necklaces - if you're feeling daring even pair with a neon fabric neck piece. If you've been keeping a fashion eye on the catwalk, cow print (YES, cow print) is set to dominate. A white shirt would work really well with this print, or dalmatian print, as the bold pattern can sometimes dominate so mute it with a plain white shirt and simple accessorising...

Ashish cow print skirt SS 2011 (imagine avec white shirt)

H&M neon necklace

Classic chic:

Imagine you wake up as Rachel Zoe. What would be the first you would do? Raid your own wardrobe and spend all day looking at your amazing jewellery collection. I know I would. But secondly, you would wake up as the epitome of how to make simple look amazing. Pair a toned down outfit with the right accessories and colour palate and there you have the key to fashion success.

Wear your classic white shirt with black cigarette pants a la Zoe, and pair with either a great pair of shoes or some amazing cuffs or necklace. Either or, that is the rule here - too much you just take the look away from chic into eek. 

Alternatively, a really simple classic look is leave your white shirt slightly open at the top and iron  the lapels upwards and pair with dark berry lipstick with black stilettos, a la Olsen. That is one of my ultimate favourite looks, and is my ultimate go-to on a day I need a wee boost...

Rachel Zoe Collection

Olsen looking chic - standard


Another look to achieve with a classic white shirt is the dominatrix look. Many are quite fearful of this trend, however trust me - once you go leather and latex, you can't go back. Don your white shirt with a black pencil skirt a la Maggie Gyllenhaal in one of my favourite films 'Secretary'. Ok, maybe don't pair with whips and chains, but with dark red lipstick and a simple hair do, this look is really powerful. In a world where it's all about attention grabbing fashion, an outfit that is as simplistic a palatte as this, really works and is one of ultimate favourite fashion looks...

Maggie Gyllenhaal 'Secretary'
So there you have it! My way to achieve amazing style with your boyfriend's white shirt whilst staying practical at the same time. Be sure to visit all the high street stores at the moment, they are always white shirt stocked a plenty. 

Now, I'm off to scout out my whips to wear with my white shirt at work tomorrow...

Emma x

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Ones to watch - accessories!


And a key accessories trend that I've noticed going on at the moment is butterflies. No not, bridal accessorising or the clips you used to wear as a little girl, but insect adorned nails to butterfly topped barnets. Trust me, the floral hair bands of this year will be replaced by butterfly hair accessories next year. 

Celebs including Katy Perry and Lana Del Rey have been sporting butterfly accessories with prim and proper dresses (Lana) to crystallised body suits (Katy). I love the whimsical element insect accessories have, and the way they can take a plain white dress to something far more fashion forward and avant garde...

Katy Perry,  MuchMusic Awards

Katy Perry

Lana Del Rey
The great thing about trends like this when they emerge is that they are cost-effective and allow for you to unleash your inner creative fashionista, as you can purchase fabric butterflies from any local haberdashery for around 50 pence per butterfly and make your own hair piece. For those in Scotland, Mandors in Glasgow is my ultimate go-to haberdashery and Aladdin's cave of wonder and colour and  for those in the London area head to Dalston Market at a weekend to get creative bargains galore...

Haberdashery organza butterflies

If you're not feeling in a creative frame of mind, you can purchase some great butterfly accessories from ASOS marketplace, by Camden based abilu creations. My favourite is the large butterfly clip for a bargain £8...

abilu creations also offer a wide range of hair accessories, and I have to admit they are a new favourite of mines and I will definitely be making a visit to their store in Camden to stock up for the summer soon...

Selection of butterfly clips, abilu creations, £5 each

abilu creations, large butterly clip, £8

On another note, at the MuchMusic Awards Katy Perry appeared at above, she also sported Glasgow born textile and hosiery design duo Bebaroque's tattoo print bodysuit. I've loved Bebaroque for years and am lucky enough to own several of their pieces in part to having worked for their Glasgow based PR firm in the past. Katy Perry is the ideal model for Bebaroque clothing, and if you're looking for something luxurious and unique to add to your wardrobe, I'd heartily recommend Bebaroque.

Katy Perry in Bebaroque bodysuit with black flared pants
So, two great labels for you to check out there - abilu creations and Bebaroque - enjoy!

Emma x

Monday, 18 June 2012

I loved Lovebox 2012

This weekend I was partying it up at Lovebox Festival 2012 in East London's Victoria Park, and had the BEST TIME EVER. The style was out on force. Being in arguably one of the most fashionable and style conscious cities in the whole world can really put the pressure on on what to wear but we did well enough to get style snapped a few times. Still won't be able to rock neon yellow hair with bubble backpacks and short shorts anytime soon I don't think though. 

I opted to go for a mix of burlesque glamour with converse - as my friend noted, the female version of a 'suit and trainers' look. Comfort ruled, especially when it came to dancing in the mud to Felix Da Housecat. And I LOVED it. After years of wearing heels, nothing was more liberating than being able to combine my usual glitz with comfort. I am officially now a trainer convert and am after a pair of gold Nike high-tops. Please do tell me where I can scour a pair!

My favourite acts included Rita Ora (surprisingly good and I love her new tune), Kelis (despite being an hour late, I still love and have loved this diva since her 'Trick me Twice' days), Felix (obvs - third time I've seen him now and he always puts on a good one), new favourite band, Basque electro infused Crystal Fighters, James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem (starstruck), Little Dragon (one of my favourite bands of recent times) and a very pretty and talented, but dreary, Lana Del Rey. 

Some pics below of the event from my wee Blackberry camera. I heartily recommend you all go next year and I now can't wait to trail East London with my soon to be purchased gold Nike high tops!

Fake converse and jail stripes

Ip wearing Isolated Heroes - Scotland represent!

Ip - Hayley Scanlan skirt, me - Carnaby Street boutique Monki top and Primark skirt with Monki silver accessories, Toli - Sports chic in Asos cycling shorts and H&M necklace

Sunday Day 3


Azarri and III


Lana Del Rey

Dundonians in Lovebox - super hairstylists Michael and Annette x

Monday, 11 June 2012

A step back in fashion history...

My it has been some time since I last posted! Hope you all enjoyed the Queenie celebrations. I am fortunate enough to live in Zone 1 in London on a top floor flat and could see the fireworks from Buckingham Palace after the Jubilee Concert, mid-party might I add, which thrilled all of our guests. I also LOVED K-Middy's nude, lace number at the ceremony in St Paul's. I am in total awe of that lady. Bar the American Tan hosiery.

I was invited along to the Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens fashion seminar last Friday at the Foundling Museum. Well worth a go see I reckon and always good to get to know our fashion roots. I will be developing a section of the blog looking at the fashion related things to do in and around London and my native Scotland, so anyone out there launching any new nights or shows let me know ;)

Talking of fashion history, this blog post will be looking at what I like to call 'The Great Shoe Debate', ie. the Brothel Creepers trend. I've seen many a female in East London don these and predict they will dominate the UK this summer.

At first despising this shoe style, I am growing to develop a slight fondness for brothel creepers due to a rich fashion history. With the development of this age-old shoe style's materials, colours and textures in 2012 I'm really beginning to like these. I just genuinely don't think they work on 5 foot girls like me.

First designed as a practical alternative to hard-worn, heavy boots, they were worn by World War One soldiers in Africa due to the thick sole, due to the humid and tough African terrain, they didn't start out life to be worn with floppy hats and maxis a la 2012. The shoe later saw a resurgence back in the UK after the men returned home, being seen in various nightspots around London, hence the coining of the term 'brothel creeper'.

It was in the 1950s when the shoes were worn by the iconic Teddy Boys that their place in fashion history was solidified, catapulting them from being a practical alternative to the ultimate stylish shoe. We can see parallels of the way the Teddy Boys wore their brothel creepers with the way they are worn now, with leather jackets, quiffs and tight fitting tailoring...

After a brief resurgance in the '70s in Malcom McLaren's infamous London store, then in the '80s on the feet of supergroup Banarama, they are now seen in 2012 on the feet of fashion forward celebs including Rita Ora, Rihanna and Jessie J...

The best way to wear this style of shoe is with a 'grunge' look - all messy hair, leather, short shorts and slack t-shirts. Avoid at all costs if you're a glamour puss - hence why I admire, yet can't wear this look. My favourites on the market at the moment are Underground Creepers, which can be found in Office stores online and throughout the UK. Retailing at around £95, they are an investment piece and will see you through many a festival this summer. A thing to note with Creepers is that a solid muted colour works best, as it is the silhouette of the shoe which strikes out rather than the colour or pattern. However, I do love a bit of leopard on my creeper - no pun intend. See some of my favourites below...

Underground Creeper, purchase at Office stores throughout the UK

Ultimate Style Queen and leading fashion blogger Susie Bubble rocking floral creepers

Who knows, I may rock these at Lovebox this to love a trend stepped in history!

Emma x


One of my favourite Scottish designers and over all faboosh lady Hayley Scanlan has won Young Designer of the Year at the Scottish Fashion Awards - you go lady! All - check this amazeball designer out before she's on even more fire. I knew she would do this ;) xx