Friday, 30 December 2016

To blog or not to blog.....

I won't lie to you, I'm impressed by all the bloggers who keep writing posts during December. At times, it makes me anxious, thinking that I'm not keeping up but mostly, I remind myself that we all have different demands on our time and  priorities and I'm sorry to say that blogging goes way down my priority list at this time of year. Work has also taken much of my blogging time away from me but I'm ok with that too - I love having something that's totally removed from blog and family and I can't deny the income has helped greatly this Christmas.

Mostly, I've just felt a bit out of sorts with blogging. 

I'm torn between the feeling that I'm helping you with your style and shopping dilemmas and the sense that I'm fuelling unnecessary purchases and making you all feel that you have to buy things you don't really need. I know I feel that way when I read other blogs and I hate that pressure. I can't help feeling that lots of the issues we have with our wardrobes are to do with having too much in them in the first place.

I don't know the answer except to say that during 2017, I'll definitely continue to shop less. My resolutions at the beginning of 2016 were very much around buying quality basic items and focussing on preloved as much as possible and I'm happy to report that I've done just that. I've sold off loads via eBay and Dejavu and my wardrobe is about a third smaller than it was in January. It's definitely more classic, less trend driven and in all honesty, a bit boring. But it's FAR easier to dress and I find I'm stressing less about unworn items....because there aren't many. Anything I feel I've not really been wearing, I drop it down to Ruth for her to sell on my behalf. I'm yet to regret letting go of a single item.

Do I want to continue blogging? I'm just not sure right now. I worry that my pared back, boring wardrobe is not exciting enough. I often crave privacy.  I miss going for a walk and NOT taking 30 photos. I went shopping on Boxing day and didn't take a single picture and it was like a revelation!

But I also know that I'm so blessed to have this space and all the support and love I get from everyone who clicks through to read. I'm privileged to be regularly sent product to feature - every item comes with an internal conflict about coming across as too commercial but I'm realistic enough to know that the selected few brands I do feature, offer me the opportunity to add fresh content and it always motivates me to blog when I'm feeling less than inspired.

I think however that 2017 will see less content on blogs like this and more on instant social media channels. I'm LOVING Snapchat and over Christmas, it was really the only channel I kept a presence on. It's instant, real, honest and good fun. There's no backlog, no unread posts, no audit trail. No pressure! I'm also enjoying Insta stories and Instagram generally. Fewer words and a visual feast with all those fabulous filters...a blessing for those of us without photographer partners and fancy cameras!

For now, I'll keep my little piece of the internet and see how things go. I'd love to hear your views - do you read blog less? What social media channels are your favourites? Do I need a kick up the arse?!!

Oh and after all that.....I've been asked by lots of you to share my January sales purchases. I made a list before looking at any of the sales and bought carefully so given it fits well with my basic/capsule objectives for this coming year, I'll take some photos and share in the next few days. But don't feel any pressure to buy also!!!!

Back soon my friends,

Ax










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Monday, 19 December 2016

#BringHomeChristmas with SuperValu NI

This is a bit off piste but when SuperValu NI got in touch to ask me to get involved in their #BringHomeChristmas initiative, it just felt like a lovely, family focussed thing to blog about. Plus, I love supporting local companies. Oh and they sent me some wine too....that helped!
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Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Cashmere Crew Neck from John Lewis


I've always wished for a wardrobe of gorgeous cashmere classic knits. The wardrobe staples that stand the test of time, made from the softest warmest most luxurious wool. So when John Lewis asked if I'd like to road test their classic Cashmere Crew Neck, it didn't take me long to accept the challenge.

I thought it would be an interesting challenge also as the idea of saving up to buy cashmere basic knits appeals to me but when push came to shove in the past, I always opted for less expensive lambswool or merino. So would road testing this knit every day for a week, make me realise the worth of buying quality cashmere?
I was sent a Black Crew Neck Cashmere knit in a size 10. Fit wise, it's perfect for this style of jumper. Neat without being clingy but with enough room to wear a layer underneath, which I did on a couple of the days. 

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Saturday, 3 December 2016

My Personal Styling Session at Victoria Square, Belfast

I was asked a few weeks ago if I'd like to try out the Personal Shopping service at Victoria Square Shopping Centre as a way of finding something to wear to my Christmas party and a couple of other social occasions during December. Well I wasn't going to say no to that - a chance to spend a morning in the gorgeous styling booth in Victoria Square trying on rails and rails of clothing picked especially for me? Shopping heaven.
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