Sunday, 3 September 2017

#Spenditwell AW17 with M&S | School Gate Style

Remember School Gate Style? I thought given the time of year, I'd resurrect it for a blog post or two because my favourite season is about to start and there are some absolutely amazing pieces coming into M&S. And I'm getting this in ahead of the game because already the shoes are limited stock!
You may remember I worked with M&S on the Spring/Summer ‘Spend It Well’ campaign and it was all about realising what's important in in life and enjoying it. My favourite line from the official blurb was something along the lines of burning the posh candle - not keeping it for best, so straight away, I knew it was right up my street.

For Autumn, it's about looking at making space and time for ourselves once the routine starts back and the season changes. About doing things that bring you joy and make us feel good about life. Now my first reaction to reading this was that all you need to do is book a ticket to the BCGC Christmas Concert where joy is a guaranteed! But I find buying shoes and coats comes a close second :)

One of the interesting aspects of the collection is the continued blurring of lines between smart and casual. As someone who works part time, I'm loving this - when I last worked in an office, it was formal wear all the way and I had two distinct wardrobes going on - work and casual. Now, with it being acceptable to wear trainers with dresses and skirts with boots, your wardrobe can work much harder for you, at work & at the weekend, allowing you to get much more wear from each piece.

With this in mind, I picked 4 pieces that have that smart/casual flexibility. 4 items that can be worn together as a complete outfit but also individually with so much of my existing wardrobe.

Starting with the item that's going to sell out first - the shoes. I've seen these on some instagram profiles over the past couple of weeks and in fact, I tried on the blush pink version during the summer.
I know burgundy is a big colour every AW but this season, it's bigger than ever. Along with forest green, you're going to find something burgundy in every shop this autumn so there's so much scope to make these shoes work with other outfits. I'm already on the look for a midi/maxi dress with burgundy - and a couple of scarves.
Comfort wise, these are great and they're especially good for me with my back issues as they give me a little bit of height without the heel.

Next up, I'm asked every AW about a coat that can work practically on the school run, while being stylish and I think this is a strong contender. It's a trench so it's a pure classic - effortlessly stylish and flattering and it will never go out of fashion but it's also got a hood (removable - I took it off for these photos) and Stormwear functionality which makes it waterproof.
As well as being a gorgeous coat, it completely ticks the smart and casual boxes because you could wear this over a fully corporate trouser suit and kick ass but then you can throw your skinny jeans and trainers on and you are good to go on the school run.
Oh and it's fleece lined - so so soft and lovely!
You know how much I've loved my midi skirts recently but lots of you have told me that the style isn't the most flattering given the amount of material around the hip area - especially with pleated versions. Well I think this skirt will appeal because it's got the cut of a pencil skirt, the ultimate flattering fit for a pear shape, with a bit of a 2017 update in the form of a frill hem, which brings it to a much more current length and allows you to dress it down with flats, boots or trainers. But add some stilettos and you're SMOKIN'! 
Finally, I read the reviews on this roll neck and realised this is a wardrobe basic I've missed out on up until now. Apparently people buy them in bulk every year? The range of colours is gorgeous and since it arrived and I tried on, I've ordered the winter white and the plum. Just the most perfect basic piece for your wardrobe and only £17.50.

I'll be honest and say that as I ordered it all, I wasn't sure if it would definitely work together. I loved how the shoes tied in with the roll neck but would the coat work over it all? I'm so happy it does.

I also thought I'd feel like a bit of a wally in the middle of August trying on winter clothes but luckily, the Belfast weather obliged and it felt like October - with even a few leaves at my feet!

You can find the first drop of the new Marks & Spencer AW17 range on this link and for when it gets cooler, the knitwear range is going to hit in October and I've heard it is worth waiting for.

Ax
Disclaimer - I was gifted these products for the purpose of the review but I wasn't paid to write this post, nor was I obliged to. The words are all my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that support this blog

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4 comments

  1. Those brogues! All the heart eye emojis xx

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  2. As The A team used to say " I love it when a plan comes together" - just swap plan for outfit! Looks great!

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  3. Are these patent brogues from M&S? I HAVE to have them in my life!

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    1. Yes, they are Diana! They come in 3 colour ways x

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