Category Archives: Fashion

Pale Green Pants

Green trousers by H&M

Can’t resist this title. My youngest son and I were reading the Dr Seus classic together the other evening. By luck or accident – I’m not sure which – our reading matter appears to have influenced a recent purchase.  Some green pants from H&M. Or trousers, as they’re more commonly known.

Green trousers by H&M

Mine are nicer than Dr Seus’ – and I’ve been itching to wear them since I bought them last week. Now, finally, the arctic chill has lifted a little and I’m ready to brave bare ankles.

I’m wearing these green trousers from H&M with a soft grey coatigan from last year and a floaty top which is currently on sale at ASOS.

Green trousers by H&M

I also wanted to show you my new leather rucksack, by John Lewis. Cute, and perfect for lugging round all my stuff.

Trousers, £19.99, H&M / Top, £14, ASOS / Loafers, £22.99, New Look / Rucksack, £119, John Lewis

H&M trousers always come up super small – so I’ve sized up from a 10 to a 12.

I’m loving this outfit and it feels perfect for early spring days. Because, yes, it is officially spring now! 

Checkmate, winter!

Checked coat and slogan t shirt

So, March arrived, but so did the snow. Winter wasn’t quite ready to leave us yet – and it’s been more stalemate than checkmate. But now, finally, temperatures are on the up.

Winter’s had its last gasp and we’re officially in transition. Which basically means you’ll spend the next couple of months taking off first scarf, then your coat…then putting them both back on again. The weather’s fickle, so you need to be clever to outwit it.

Remember those checked coats we talked about in the autumn? Well, they’re just as big for spring – and just as useful. A lightweight checked coat strikes just the right balance between winter and spring. 

Here are my favourite ways to wear mine…

With a cute slogan tee

Apple tee, £12.99, New Look / Coat, past season New Look (similar here) / Jeans, £26, Nasty Gal / Brogues, past season Moshulu (similar here)

Classic checked coat

Layered up with a soft scarf on colder days

Coat, past season New Look (similar here) / Jeans, £26, Nasty Gal / Scarf, old (similar here).

Keeping it simple with grey knitwear and boots

Coat, past season New Look (similar here) / Jeans, £26, Nasty Gal / Boots, old (similar here) / Bag, £7, Peacocks

Checkmate, winter! It’s downhill all the way now to Spring.*

Checkmate, winter!

*May regret saying that.

Working 9-3: my freelance style

Joanie Peggy checked trouser

It’s a myth that all freelancers work in their pyjamas. Ok, sometimes we do – but mostly we just want clothes that are flexible. I fit my work in around the school run – so my working hours are 9-3. During that time I need an outfit that’ll take me from the school run to my home office – via client meetings and a bit of coffee shop hot-desking.

Joanie Peggy checked trouser

Right now I have a nice little formula going on: smart trousers, a simple knit and a camel coat. It’s a look that can take me everywhere, whilst also passing the school-run test. This basically means: can you wear it while balancing a combination of lunchboxes and papier-mache lighthouses in your arms? If the answer’s yes, then it’s a winner.

Joanie Peggy checked trouser

One of my favourite brands, Joanie, have recently launched a new workwear collection – and it’s gorgeous. It’s a wardrobe fit for Mad Men’s Joan Holloway in all her gorgeousness – full of cute dresses, trousers and tops. Now, I’m clearly no Joan – but I couldn’t wait to try a bit of this retro-inspired collection.

Joanie Peggy checked trouser

I chose these checked trousers because I knew they’d fit perfectly into my 9-3 freelance style. Why? Well, they’re low-key – but they’ve got that subtle style and sass that I just love. The fabric is soft and stretchy so they’re comfortable and practical at home – but they also looked pulled-together and smart for work meetings. Perfection!

Joanie Peggy checked trouser

I wear: Peggy checked trousers, £32, c/o Joanie / Loafers, £22.99, New Look

Bag, £19.99, New Look / Sunglasses, £2.50, Peacocks  / Coat (old), ASOS


Can you wear mom jeans if you’re a mum?

Mom jeans by Nasty Gal

I’ve been pondering this question ever since ‘mom’ jeans started appearing in the shops a few years ago. Of course, mums come in all shapes, sizes and ages – but for me personally, being a mum means that my bum, legs and sticky-out tum will probably never be what they once were.

That’s ok most of the time, but I tend to avoid anything that might be a little, well, unflattering. And mom jeans have always fallen in that category. They’re short in the leg, high-waisted and slightly baggy on the thigh – and sometimes they’re even stonewashed. Weird combo, you might say. And, you’re right. They are exactly the kind of jeans my mum wore in the eighties and nineties.

Can a mum wear mom jeans?

For this reason (sorry, mum) I’ve always avoided them like the plague – oh, and the fact that they only seem to work on lithe 18 year-olds. But this spring, they’re still on-trend. People my age, who are actually mums, are wearing them. It’s been long enough now that even I can’t deny their existence any longer.

It’s time to see if this mum can pull off dressing like a 1980s mom.

Can a mum wear mom jeans?

I have chosen this pair from Nasty Gal (I know, my least likely place to shop, but they were on offer). First thoughts on trying them on: wow, I can do them up. Followed by: yay, my tummy doesn’t look too bad, although they make those child-bearing hips look quite solid… But on the whole, I like them – especially the dark colour and the unfinished hems. Plus, the tight, nipped-in waist feels feminine and flattering.

Mom jeans by Nasty Gal

As I have a sticky-out tummy, so there’s no way I’d wear these jeans with a short, tight top on it’s own. In coat weather, this is balanced out with a longer jacket – making me feel taller and leaner. A loose blazer also helps keep things looking balanced. In warmer weather, it’ll be loose shirts and tees.

So, the verdict is: yes, this mum can wear them. But she does have reservations. They’re not the easiest shape to wear and it’s taken me a while to find a pair I like. If they make you feel great, wear them – if not, don’t be ashamed to swerve this trend entirely. But they’re worth a try, if only for the nostalgia fest.

Can a mum wear mom jeans?

I wear: Jeans, £25, Nasty Gal – I’m wearing a medium / Striped tee, £11.99, New Look 

Black handbag (in first photo), £7 and Sunglasses, £2.50 are both recent buys in the Peacocks sale. 

Blazer (H&M), Checked Coat (New Look), Boots (New Look), Red bag (Mango) are all past seasons. 


Botanical Dreams: the best floral fashion

Thought clothing floral dress

We’re currently at a fashion crossroads. It’s still winter – but we long for new prints and lighter styles. The current crop of botanical-print fashion bridges this gap perfectly. The blooms are bold and painterly – yet muted enough to feel at home under our winter coats. It’s the grown-up way to wear florals.

I’m currently searching through my wardrobe for anything that fits the bill. Most of us will have something. I got this beautiful dress by Thought at the beginning of the autumn – and it still looks great now. Also, it’s now in the sale for £39.

Thought clothing floral dress

Or, if you fancy something new, here are some of the best winter florals available right now.

Dresses: A long-sleeved dress will see you right through to the spring. Layer under a simple grey coat – and add a lightweight polo on cold days.

S/S18 Botanical floral print dresses

From left: Abstract floral and butterfly print, £59.95, White Stuff / Kathleen Dress, £130, Boden / Carwinion Dress, £65, Sea Salt

Trousers: So perfect for adding a pop of colour to your winter knits and coats. I’m in. If you order the H&M trousers, you might want to size up – they’re super slim. 

S/S18 Floral trousers

From left: Floral trousers, £19.99, H&M / Hampshire 7/8 trouser, £80, Boden / Floral trousers, £19.99, H&M

The floral blouse: The bold and beautiful way to beat the winter blues. These three deserve to be your new hero pieces.

S/S18 Floral tops

From left: Short sleeved top, £8.99, H&M / Linen-blend jacket, £49.99, H&M / Floral blouse, £39.99, Mango

Do you love winter florals as much as me?

Hitting the spot: three ways to wear the new dotty trend

S/S18 spotty dotty trend

One of the best things about January is watching the new spring fashion trends appear. They’re as welcome as the first snowdrops or early daffodils.

Obviously, the weather doesn’t keep up with fashion’s expectations – we won’t be wearing summer dresses and sandals any time soon. But, there’s still ample opportunity to start exploring new trends that appear – a collar here, a pretty shoe there.

Right now, spotty prints are catching my eye. I keep spotting them everywhere – on dresses, t-shirts and shirts. When I was in Cambridge last week I picked up three new tops which all embrace this new dotty trend – and weave a bit of spring magic into your winter wardrobe.

First is this laid-back shirt by Primark (£10, in-store only). I love the earthy dark green, and the cheery spots. It’s great under a chunky cardigan – but will be equally good on a warm spring day.

S/S18 Primark spotty shirt

Next is this pretty shirt from H&M (£17.99) with soft, painterly spots. This is a great one to dress up or down – perfect for meetings, or wear with a thick jumper at the weekends.

S/S18 H&M spotty shirt

And I couldn’t resist this t-shirt in a dotty Dalmatian print, also by H&M (£8.99, in-store only). It’s very soft and is another great option to dress up or down.

S/S18 H&M Dalmatian spot spotty shirt

It also looks very sweet with another of this season’s new trends – ruffles. This ingenious little collar from ASOS (£12) creates the illusion of a ruffly shirt and is a great way to completely transform an outfit.

ASOS ruffle collar

You may also have noticed I’ve had a fringe cut back in again – another easy peasy way to lift your January look! I’m loving being back in the gang again.

Are you onboard with spots and dots yet? What other new trends are you coveting this spring? 

Three trends to cheer you up this January 

The classic beret

Ah, January. The month of gloomy days, diets and back-to-work blues. Let’s face it, we all need a boost right now. And what better way to do it than with fashion? Ideally, you want something that’ll give you a spring in your step, without spending too much.

Here are three sweet little ways to inject a bit of fun and happiness back into your wardrobe this January…

The classic beret: for jaunty days and rainy days. The humble beret is back and just as cute as ever. Right now, all the best people are wearing them. It’s more sophisticated than the bobble hat – and it has just the right amount of jaunty oo la la. I bet you have one lurking somewhere, don’t you? I’ve rescued mine from the children’s dressing up box and it’s not going back any time soon.

Three trends to try this January

Beret with bow, £12, ASOS / Fawn wool beret, £10, ASOS

 Rust wool beret, £9.99, New Look

Slogan sweaters. Because novelty jumpers aren’t just for Christmas. January can suffer from being a bit too serious at times. Cheer things up with a jolly new top that’ll make you smile every time you look in the mirror. Joanie and Next have a great selection right now.

Three trends to try this January

Red stripe jumper, £20, Next / Sunshine jumper, £35, Joanie / Funday jumper, £28, Next

Frontier Florals. A little bit Little House on the Prairie, and a little bit vintage Laura Ashley. Ditzy florals, frills and bows – it’s a sure-fire way to beat the gloom. Wear with a light-weight polo, tights and boots now, and on its own in spring. Your beret will probably go with it too.

Three trends to try this January

Blue floral dress, £49, Topshop / Floral dress with black bow, £29.99, Zara

 Floral dress with gathered neck, £29, Zara

Which trends are you loving right now?

The classic beret

Starry Skies

Starry skirt by H&M

This December, the stars are shining bright. They’re up in the sky, but they’re also working their magic in our wardrobes. It’s like someone left the lid off the glitter pot – clothes, boots and accessories have all been sprinkled with a liberal coating of star-dust.

Last week you may have noticed me wearing a star-studded jumper. This week, I’ve gone one step further and invested in a skirt strewn with silver stars. They glimmer, shimmer and twinkle.

Starry skirt by H&M

Skirts often get overlooked in the rush to buy the perfect Christmas party dress. But a really top-notch skirt one is the perfect choice for this time of year. Wearing this one with a plain black jumper keeps things feeling low-key – you could cook your Christmas dinner in it. But you could easily take it up a notch for a party.

Starry skirt by H&M

My skirt is a delightful concoction of net and under-skirt – which also happens to be another welcome trend for Christmas. It feels swishy and a tiny bit old-fashioned – but not in the least sugar-coated. Which just about sums up my ideal look. It’s £24.99, by H&M.

I’m wearing it here with simple black sock boots and a dark coatigan. But, if it’s a really chilly day, it looks equally good with a thick wooly coat in any colour.

Starry skirt by H&M

Feeling star-struck? Look this way for more of my favourite celestial pieces available this Christmas…

Starry print Christmas party clothes

Clockwise from top left: Pussy bow dress, £38, Joanie

 Sparkle star dress, £56, Warehouse

Embroidered Boots, £69.99, Mango / Top, £19.99, and Skirt, £29.99, both H&M

Or, if your budget is limited, add a bit of glitz to your existing wardrobe with these gorgeous hair clips – which are £5.99 by ASOS.

I wear: Skirt, £24.99, H&M / Top, £15, Peacocks

Boots, £39.50, Marks and Spencer / Coat, £140, Thought

Starry skirt by H&M

Are you ready to sprinkle a little star-dust?

Velvet trousers: your low-key festive friend

Uniqlo velvet trousers

Velvet is having a moment. You can’t have missed it. It reminds me of my childhood when everything was better if it was made of velvet. Floppy hats, rucksacks, scarves – nothing was complete with a velvet bow. Now is the perfect time to embrace this trend again. But with one proviso: keep it simple.

I wouldn’t blame you if you give those stretchy, crushed velvet mini-dresses a miss. I’m going to swerve that one completely, and turn to the velvet trouser instead. They’re grown up, yet fun. Formal, yet comforting.

A pair of velvet trousers is just the thing to fill the gap in your winter wardrobe for those in-betweeny events – the kind of ones that veer between smart and casual. They’ll see you through those busy days when you need to steer yourself from office to party – or school run to festive drinks.

Uniqlo velvet trousers

Look for rich, berry-coloured hues or midnight blues. My Burgundy-coloured skinny trousers are by Uniqlo. They have a mince-pie-friendly stretchy waistband, but also manage to look really rather elegant with heels and a simple shirt. Add tasselled, statement earrings for easy glamour.

Velvet trousers

I wear:

Velvet trousers, £24.90, Uniqlo (sold out online in this colour, but try these by Zara)

Shirt, £25, La Redoute

Black ankle boots, £39.50, Marks and Spencer

Earrings, £5.99, New Look

Need more inspiration? Here are some more of my favourites…

Velvet trousers

Clockwise, from top left: Green velvet trousers, £80, Boden

 Wide trousers, £14.90, Uniqlo

 Navy velvet jeggings, £45, White Stuff

 Black jeans with a velvet trim, £39.50, Marks and Spencer

Will you be wearing velvet this winter?

Yes, you can wear a leopard-print coat

Leopard print coat by LOTD

The allure of the leopard print coat will always be strong. There’s just something about it. Is it the kitsch tackiness, inspired by Bette Lynch? Or is that we all secretly want to be the cool girl?

I’m the least cool girl ever. Despite my best efforts, I’ll never be Kate Moss – unless she decides to become a librarian.  And yet, I’m still drawn to leopard-print like a moth to the flame.

Faux fur coats are a perennial fashion favourite. Every year I look at them – and then walk away. My dyed-in-the-wool mousiness always wins out. And besides, wouldn’t people just laugh at me if I wore one?

Leopard print coat by LOTD

This autumn, I was back stroking the furry coats again. But this year, the mouse didn’t win. Writing this blog, and indulging my love for style, has taught me that life’s too short to worry about what everyone else is thinking.

Clothes have the power to transform the way we feel. My inner-mouse keeps telling me that today’s not the day to wear leopard print. You’ve still got a cold…you’re not looking your best…why would you want to draw attention to yourself? But, actually, shrugging on something as gorgeous as a fur coat has the potential to totally transform your mood.

Leopard print coat by LOTD

My coat is a sort of fluffy, faux snow-leopard affair – which feels a bit less scary than full-on traditional leopard. When I wear it I’m a mouse in leopard’s clothing and there’s nowhere to hide – and that means putting on my sunnies in November and holding my head high. And guess what? I feel better for it. And when I feel better I look better. We all deserve clothes that make us happy.

Leopard print coat by LOTD

Still need convincing? Leopard-print coats are more practical than you think. They’re warm as toast. And they’re also surprisingly neutral – providing you keep the rest of your outfit paired back and minimal. Dark denim, a simple knit and ankle boots are all you need.

So yes, you can wear a leopard-print coat. On the school run, at work or buying baked beans in Sainsbury’s.

Do it – you know you want to. 

Leopard print coat by LOTD

I wear: Faux fur coat, £45, c/o LOTD / Jumper, £12, c/o LOTD / Jeans, £14, Peacocks / Boots, £27.99, New Look 

Thank you to Look of the Day (LOTD) who made my leopard print dreams come true by gifting me this outfit.