Friday, 4 October 2019

The 3 Shoe Styles you need for AW19 | M&S | AD

As part of my paid collaboration with M&S this month, I'm looking at footwear and at this time of the year, there are 3 types of footwear that in my view, you need to have in your wardrobe so you're ready for the season ahead....and as it happens, each one addresses a question I get on a regular basis...

1. Trainers
I'm asked all the time where to get well priced, comfortable, white leather trainers and every time, I share these ones - they have been my consistent favourites since I got them way back at the end of February and the best bit is that they're getting better with age - more and more like a certain designer brand that are sold already distressed.
I'm also drawn to these ones online as I love that they're completely plain white - they remind me of my Seven Boot Lane ones that my 10 year old has taken ownership of. The reviews are not good - never a deal breaker for me though as I personally never leave reviews...I reckon like TripAdvisor, people are faster to leave a negative than a positive one. Instead I went into my local shop and tried them on and I can give them the thumbs up - the quality is great. Size down though!

2. Loafers
Next most popular footwear question I get asked is about flat shoes for work. I do wonder if anyone actually wears heels to work these days? Perhaps in the office but I suspect not to and from - we've all become so accustomed to wearing flat, comfortable shoes, it seems running in heels has become a bit of a lost art. 
My go to for a smarter foot is a loafer and M&S have delivered in this department with bells on in these beauties. I have them in the animal print but the red and black are both gorgeous. All the Gucci vibes and so comfortable too!

For a change from black, how about these classic berry coloured ones...so wearable with black/brown/grey/green..

3. Boots
Third question I get is how to extend midi/maxi dress wearing into the colder weather and there are two types of boots that tick that box - slouchy long boots and chunky, hiking style ankle boots. But the chunky ones are great for jeans too so I'll kick off with them and these first ones are a nice gentle nod to the trend. They're an elegant shape with a fab buckle detail and they're not too heavy and hiking-like.
These next ones though are a proper hiking style option but very wearable - the brown doesn't get a good review online but I prefer the black anyway...I think the brown will look too much like an actual hiking boot. But seriously how good is it that these are properly in fashion? So amazing and practical for the wet and rubbish winter days. I tried these on yesterday in a size 6 and they were so comfortable.

Moving onto the slouch look and this style will keep your dresses in use for way longer this winter - add some leggings or thick tights and you'll have none of the cold ankles that shorter boots can give you. These are the ones I like the most in M&S and they come in a grey suede 
as well as classic black
Great heel height for daily wear but also a nice neat shape for wearing out. Don't wear with jeans though - no matter what you see on the M&S website. They go from 'seriously on trend' to 'hickorama' if you wear them with blue jeans. The M&S website is improving but it's got a bit to go yet when it comes to styling...

Ax
Disclaimer - this post was written as part of my monthly collaboration with M&S. I was not gifted any of the footwear. My links are affiliate so that M&S can track the traffic that comes from here to their website and they may pay me a small commission if you buy and keep any of the items I've linked to. This commission is entirely ploughed back into this website to help with upkeep/security/URL licence etc. It doesn't change the cost of the item for you, nor does it preclude you from availing of other offers and discounts. Thanks for supporting the brands that consistently support this blog and help keep it going x
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Wednesday, 2 October 2019

The Perfect AW19 Wardrobe Addition | Style

Like many of you reading, I'm trying to buy less and make more considered purchases. It's not easy - I struggle like most, especially in this blogging game when you're forever being presented with the latest arrivals and trends.

One thing that's helped is taking a more strategic approach to my wardrobe additions, instead of just picking up everything and anything I like the look of. For AW19, mindful of my lighter hair, I decided to look for some soft warm pink tones that would work well with the burgundy, browns, blacks and greys that I like to wear in the autumn winter and that I already have quite a lot of. Pieces that would give me more options with my existing wardrobe and that really get me excited to wear them.
This skirt ticks all these boxes...
As is so often the case for me, it came to my attention when I saw another woman wearing it with a chunky black knit. Just one look and I knew it was exactly what I was looking for this AW19. It's midi/maxi-length with lovely pleated detail and black in the pattern - that last detail is so important for me as I know I get the most wear out of things that have a black base or black in the pattern.
They say you should only buy something if you can think of three things it can be worn with in your existing wardrobe. I knew this skirt would work with the pink trench coat I got recently in Stradivarius, a black leather biker, a stone coloured blazer, an oversized black knit, a deep red crew neck, a striped hobbs crew neck, several of my slogan t-shirts, black biker boots, trainers, long brown boots....need I go on?

I wore it twice last week alone and then took it to Donegal with me at the weekend, where my photographer friend Gillian Robb, took some pictures for me...oh the difference a good photographer makes. I always feel at ease with Gillian and she knows I like the pictures taken fast and with minimal fuss. It's what makes her such a great family and business photographer...you can see her work on her website here.

In these shots, I'm wearing it with a couple of my favourite burgundy pieces - suede ankle boots from Seven Boot Lane that I bought in one of their sales a few years ago (oh how I miss SBL - there are very few places that can make boots as nice as they did) and a faux leather burgundy biker jacket that I snapped up also in the sales, this time from Great Plains (I also have it in dark green....for another day)
Hoodie - Part Two from Seven Limavady (gift)
Bag - Gianni Conti from McKillens Ballymena

I'll be honest, I'm not that good with colour and I stood for ages looking in the mirror before we went out to do these shots, unsure if it was just a bit too matchy-matchy...but I embraced the colour and I love the result. I think I'd change the bag if I was wearing it again though. What to, I don't know...but that's the beauty of outfit shots.

Perhaps you're thinking that a skirt like that isn't going to be as practical in the colder winter months but with the addition of tights and boots, I think it will. I love a bit of floral in winter too - it really lifts the mood so with my 11 year old Hobbs long brown boots and a camel coat, I think it will be good to go on a colder day.

But for now, while the weather is in this lovely transitional state, I'm going to wear this skirt as much as possible with burgundy...these boots and the biker haven't been worn as much as I thought and I love that this skirt has given them a new lease of life!

On an aside, is that backdrop amazing? I've a blog post in the pipeline to tell you more about my Donegal trip to an amazing retreat space in Dunfanaghy run by an amazing friend. Just waiting on some of the images to come through first. I've not been in Donegal for a few years and I'd forgotten how breathtakingly beautiful it is. Well worth the drive - I wish I could have stayed longer.

Ax

Disclaimer - all items purchased by me, apart from the hoodie. Some affiliate links used. Not a sponsored blog post.

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