Sunday, 7 October 2018

Living the instasham


Instagram. Ugh. The love hate relationship to END all love hate relationships. Too much? Nah I don’t think so. Let me just get started with a screenshot of something I tweeted the other week..


Unless you’ve been living under a rock, or you don’t waste your time on social media like the rest of us sad acts, you’ll probably have seen that Instagram has been getting a lot of flak lately. Why? Well, if it’s not shit engagement then followers are dropping, and if it’s not followers dropping it’s countless comments about being an ambassador for a sunglasses company (where do I sign up!?). 

And that’s without even touching on the fake as fuck environment that has swallowed up such a vast proportion of our lives. Looking at posed photos, posing for photos, knowing it’s all fake but feeling the need to join in anyway. Reading posts about how Instagram is a sham and feeling inspired so posing for a selfie to write another caption to inspire others about the sham life we all needn’t be living. The endless cycle of calling bullshit on the world that is Instagram while continuing to live it with everyone else. Knowing it’s not good for you but not really being able to stop.. Sounds pretty similar to an addiction don’t ya think?

Using myself as an example, I will spend HOURS scrolling through Instagram to end up feeling just as squishy and chubby as I knew I would, and then worse than that start resenting girls who have perfectly tiny waists and toned abs when I don’t even know them at all! Then I feel guilty for being so horrible and thinking negatively about this stranger on the internet and just end up kind of wallowing in this waaaa I’m just not good enough pit of weirdness. 

BUT it doesn't stop there. We haven't even touched on the burning fire within that goes by the name of validation. You know in Finding Nemo when all those seagulls are going MINE, MINE over and over again? I imagine that Instagram is just a sea of faces going VALIDATE ME, VALIDATE ME, VALIDATE ME! But guess what? We all fucking do it! You telling me you’ve never deleted a picture because it didn’t have ‘enough’ likes? I actually get embarrassed if I don’t have many likes on my picture – genuine real life embarrassment based on how many likes a photo gets. How bad is that?!!


And that’s what I meant with my tweet. It does feel like a game, a game that we all know we’re trapped in but are all too scared to leave – me included! Because what happens if we leave? Will people start forgetting that we exist? What is life without our online persona that we have grown to love and in turn grown to hate? What will we be missing out on? WHAT WOULD IT FEEL LIKE TO HAVE MY LIFE BACK AGAIN. Ok you get the idea. But seriously, I’m just a big ol’ hypocrite as much as the next person because I haven't done it yet either. 

Another thing I wanted to touch on – especially if my manager is reading because I really want to keep my job lol hiya – is that social media for work/business purpose is a totally different ball game. While my blogging profile is diminishing the profile I run for work is absolutely thriving - better than it ever has done before. The images work, we get real followers, the interaction is great and it couldn’t be going better. So why is it different with our own profiles? Are we more critical when our ‘brand’ is not a product but is actually ourselves? Our own faces? Our own style? Our bodies? I think so. And it's hard to stand out because every one else in the world is busy posting their face/style/body hoping to get noticed too. At work I post images of sexy loudspeakers and people love them because they’re different and they’re something people haven’t seen before. Maybe that’s the key, maybe people are bored of selfies now. I know I am. I’ve started using Twitter so much more again because I love having an actual conversation and writing a thought down without having to attach it to a lame duckpout picture of my face. Maybe it’s just that authenticity people want back. Maybe we all wanna start talking to each other again and put the editing apps down for a while?

To conclude this rambling, I unsurprisingly don’t have a solution, and I am unsurprisingly still on Instagram. BUT I check it less and post way less than before and it’s just not taking up as much room in my brain anymore. God it feels good. Like it’s there when I want it but if I have nothing to post in a few days then so be it, I‘m not fannying around desperately trying to find filler content anymore because let's face it who actually fucking cares whether I post or not anyway? It was most likely only ever me. Yeah I’ll still use it but I’ll post when I want to post and if I get no likes then I’ll get a grip and realise I need to stop judging my life on how many flipping LIKES a post on a social network gets.. cuz let’s be real, likes mean NOTHING anyway, they are intangible and they shouldn’t even be a second thought in our minds.

OK wow lol I’mma stop writing now because I haven’t checked Instagram in at least 5 mins and my left eye is starting to twitch. But seriously, thank you if you got this far and PLEASE get in touch to tell me your thoughts.

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SHOT BY SARAH TREACHER

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

Reigniting my love for charity shopping


In my humble opinion charity shops are somewhat like Marmite in the sense that people tend to either love them or hate them. Having wavered on both sides of the spectrum I can completely understand why people love them (name me a better feeling than unexpectedly finding an absolute dream of a piece that both fits as if it was made for you and costs less than a tenner) and why people hate them (foisty, fusty, cluttered shops where everyone seems to be finding a right old bargain apart from you are never a great time), but thanks to my latest vintage purchase my feet are stuck firmly in the 'love' camp... for now. 

Let's set the scene shall we... a busy Saturday lunchtime in any UK city centre. A twinge of curiosity around Primark's current home range (everyone loves a bit of new bedding right?) is met with immediate regret as you are sucked into swarms of sweaty teenagers and shouting mothers that fail to acknowledge your existence as you try to barge your way past every Gryffindor branded item under the sun. You try not to lose all sense of balance when you scramble out of the shop like some kind of washed up, ship-wrecked castaway and it takes every ounce of your being not to scream WIIIILSSSSOOOOON as you finally manage to push past the last person and make your way OUT of the Primark building alive. Ok yh maybe I'm a bit dramatic but you get the idea, in a world full of this scenario panning out in pretty much every city in the UK what a bloody beautiful breath of fresh air it is to open the door to a lesser known charity shop, hear the little bell ding as you step inside and have the person at the til look up and acknowledge you before you begin looking around. Instead of being surrounded by mass produced items that have been knocked off the shelves, person after person, the shelves are filled with undiscovered gems that each have their own history and stories to tell.


This blazer didn't cost a lot of money and isn't a 'brand' that I recognise. There's a hole in the inner lining of its right-side pocket. It fastens up with beautiful golden-coloured buttons. It's fit with shoulder pads. It has c h a r a c t e r. The brown on brown stripes are almost reminiscent of a school blazer and the fine detail of the blue/red pinstripes are beyond stunning. When I tried the blazer on it fit me almost as if it had belonged to me previously but the best part is that it didn't - it belonged to someone else. How cool is that?

Especially in the environmentally conscious time that we live in right now, how great is it to take an active role in recycling by creating your own wardrobe from pre-loved clothes? And not only that, but you're also benefiting a charity at the same time. Now there's a win-win if I ever saw one. And it's not even just clothes - I'm really getting into reading crime at the minute and I literally picked up two books for 99p each at the weekend - LESS THAN £2, it's just ridiculous! 

So... Shop in Primark. Buy from charity shops. Do whatever makes you happy, but just be aware that there could be a little miracle waiting to happen near you in the form of a shoulder-padded pin-striped retro number. All you have to do is go to your local charity shop and hunt it down! What do you think? Charity shopping - do you love it or hate it? Let me know and tell me your best finds!


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SHOT BY SARAH TREACHER

Wednesday, 22 August 2018

GOING ORGANIC WITH CHEAP MONDAY


'Organic'. A word that I associate with the fruit and veg aisle in the supermarket but much less so with dungarees. Clearly I'm not going to be eating my denim dungas* anytime soon so to be honest I had to do a bit of research into what organic actually means in terms of this industry (apologies if that's a little ignorant of me) and what kind of impact choosing organic clothes can potentially have on a wider scale. I mean it's all well and good slapping a big green label on an item and marketing the shit out of it in a self-congratulatory "HEY WE CARE ABOUT OUR PLANET" kinda way, but what does it all mean to the average shopper like you and me? Well, luckily for those less clued up like myself, Cheap Monday have made it pretty clear on their site: 

Organic Cotton is grown without any chemical pesticides and fertilisers and it doesn´t contain GMO Choosing organic cotton instead of conventional means:
- 46% less climate impact
- 71% less water
- 62% less energy

....well I've gotta be honest - I'm impressed!

(Plz ignore the dangly hanger thing near my neck - massive fashun faux pas and if I didn't hate them before well I bloody do now.)

The thing I really like here is that Cheap Monday actually explain what they're doing a why they're doing it. As you can probably pick up from the opening paragraph I am somewhat of a sceptic and get pretty frustrated when you can't clearly cut through the 'marketing bullshit' to see something for what it is. But here I genuinely feel like they're doing a great thing and actually making it really easy for everyone to get on board with by using organic material in their simple and popular styles so you don't have to buy some proper bizarre item (says the gal in the most flamboyant orange shirt you've ever seen) to get in on the action. It's not like an uber exclusive campaign that feels out of reach either, there are so many options on the website to pick from whether its some summery little dungas like mine or your next pair of every day jeans. 


I don't want to start making unrealistic promises that I can't keep and I won't pretend I'm only going to buy organic clothes from now on, but the fact that we have these options and that brands are actively factoring the planet and the environment into their decisions is really exciting and a huge step in a positive direction. I think it's fair to say that as consumers we want to feel that we are shopping ethically, and it's really refreshing when brands make it this easy. 


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*Items in the post have been gifted but as always this post represents my true opinions.

Thursday, 19 July 2018

CARBS LOVIN'


Nope, this isn’t an ode to bread, pasta or pizza (how great would that be though?) this post is a spotlight focus on one of my all-time favourite brands – CARBS. Bringing all my rainbow and sequin-filled dreams to life, CARBS is the ultimate festival fashion fix and deserves a lot more recognition for the unique pieces and collections that it has to offer.


Any time I wear CARBS, I feel great. And that’s what it’s all about right? Wearing items that put an extra little spring in your step and enable you to express your individuality with confidence.  

Many festival-wear brands offer a large variety of weird, wonderful (and often wacky) finds that are brilliant for the occasion but stay tucked away in the back of the wardrobe for the rest of the year. Now I’m not for a second going to deny that CARBS offerings are every bit as fun, colourful and bright as you’d expect from festival clothes, but there are some items that are just so gorgeous and feminine they could easily be worn on other special occasions or even nights out. Check out this figure-hugging dress for example, I felt so incredible wearing this - in fact if there was ever a ‘power dress’ to have existed THIS is definitely it.


Another reason I rate CARBS so highly is because I know how hard the founder, Jessica, has worked and is currently working to achieve her dreams and make her brand as big, glittery and wonderful as it can possibly be. With a very nastygal-esque beginning (involving rooms full of sequins, material and sewing essentials at her home) Jessica’s pure passion for the clothes that she creates has catapulted CARBS into its present day success.  

For more info on the brand or a better snoop at their incredible designs, have a look at their Instagram here (where you might find a few snaps of little old me!).

SHOT BY SARAH TREACHER
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Tuesday, 26 June 2018

The affordable skirt you need this summer

SHOT BY SARAH TREACHER

Summer is 100% HERE and I am so happy about it. Blue skies, light mornings, long days, beers in the sunshine… what’s not to love? And with the warmer weather inevitably comes the wardrobe switch up, digging out old dresses you forgot you owned and finding sandals you can't quite believe you once wore out in public. But let's be real, trends change all the time and people don't stay the same size forever (I ate a lot of pizza between September and June and I'm not sorry about it) so sometimes you're left with absolutely NO other option than having to spend money on pretty new weather-appropriate clothes. Heh heh heh.

Monday, 28 May 2018

How To Get Invited To Blogging Events

SHOT BY FORDTOGRAPHY

I count myself a really lucky girl that I get to attend some of the press and blogging events that I do. This year has already been an absolute whopper – Last month I attended the Stefflon Don x boohoo launch party in London which involved a really frickin cool performance from the legend herself (the free cocktails weren’t bad either, seriously a free bar just never gets old), and more recently I had a gorgeous breakfast meeting with seven stunning ladies at the Bloomsbury hotel to talk about and celebrate the Dafi hair straightening brush. There are some phenomenal events that I sometimes can’t go to because of working full time and it fully breaks my heart when I see the insta stories that evening of all my best gals partying it up – I get maaajor FOMO at the best of times – but then again I’m quite hopeful that another fun blogger event or meet up will land in my inbox before too long.

Once again, I want to reiterate that I am SO lucky, grateful… often bewildered even to get these invites, and I would hate this post to come across as braggy because any showy-offy stuff just makes me majorly cringe. I’m just being really open and honest about my own experiences and sharing a few of my tips that might help new bloggers or people thinking about blogging when they want to start networking a bit more.

Thursday, 17 May 2018

Vintage dressing for a modern soul


I haven’t done a dedicated outfit post in what feels like forever, and this time I’m really excited because I’m mixing things up a bit and throwing it waaaay back to this 40s inspired sasspot of a number. I was about to claim that dresses really aren’t my thing before I realised that was a total lie, long boho maxi dresses are absolutely my thing, but cute tea dresses like this are more of an anomaly in my wardrobe.






Monday, 7 May 2018

Eyewear made simple with Arlo Wolf


I don’t know how many people know this but on a normal day to day basis it is rare you will find me without a pair of glasses glued to my face. I can see very little without them and since I started needing specs at the age of 17 my vision has got progressively worse. After an awkward trip to the opticians (has anyone else just had to totally make up which letters are up on the screen because they genuinely can’t read any of them??) I FINALLY got my myself a very overdue up to date prescription, and very quickly looked to get myself a new pair of specs to match.

This is where Arlo Wolf* absolutely came to the rescue.

Sunday, 29 April 2018

Creating Colour with OSMO

SHOT BY FORDTOGRAPHY.

Those of you who have followed my blog for a while now will know that coloured hair is something I’m certainly not shy of. It all started a few years ago when I popped a little candyfloss pink on top of my blonde highlights, and over the years it’s evolved to a totally bleached base and just whatever colour I feel like having on my mop that day/week.

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

What to do when your work/life balance is non-existent


Ahh, the “work/life balance”, a phrase uttered by so many yet achieved by so few. A state of pure equilibrium or a mythical concept entirely? I’ll let you decide. But either way, it’s definitely something that we should be talking about.

With April being stress awareness month (so the internet tells me) I feel it’s a really apt time for me to open up this discussion and just share some thoughts around what a work/life balance means to me and what to do when you’re struggling.

Monday, 26 March 2018

I’m not a ‘real’ blogger.. but hey that’s ok!

GILET - CARI'S CLOSET

Okay so weird title I know, but it’s the best way to actually describe how I’m feeling in this post. A quick search on google tells you that a blogger is “a person who regularly writes material for a blog.”, and I guess, yeah, I do do that (let’s use the term regularly very loosely here), but still sometimes I just don’t feel like I’m a blogger.

I don’t have a million adoring fans who sit refreshing my insta feed waiting for my next post, I don’t get all expenses paid trips to the Bahamas where I can post pictures of my croissants and orange juice in bed in the morning and I haven’t got my own In The Style collection (where you can get 20% off with my code!). Brand collaborations, no matter how small, still excite the HECK out of me, and I nearly fell off my chair when I got a couple of LFW invites last month… trust me, I am still just as pumped when I get an email from someone that wants to work with me as I was when I first started out.

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

PRE-LFW VLOG

Hi there you babes, I'm not sure if you know but I recently started up a YouTube channel to compliment my blogging and tonight I have FINALLY gotten round to uploading a video that I filmed in the run up to London Fashion Week. 

I popped in to Sister Jane to shoot some stuff with CJ, then I went to the wonderful ELLE L X Fashion for Conservation event, and finally I had a dream of a time at the Boohoo LFW gifting suite. Watch the full thing below and please subscribe if you like what you see! x


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Saturday, 17 February 2018

Off Duty With Nicce


Something I often struggle with is getting the balance right when I don't need/want to style a whole outfit but I don't wanna look like a total bag of crap either. I'm pretty much all or nothing in most aspects of my life and my fashion choices are totally reflective of this. Finding decent brands to help me build out the "staples" in my wardrobe is something I haven't been doing enough of lately, as I naturally lean towards statement pieces or super colourful items. Show me a neon faux fur jacket with sparkles and rainbows and I'm all over it, one glance at some killer iridescent heels and I'm practically falling in love, but I just don't know where to start when I'm after that chilled kinda vibe.

Enter my new saviour, NICCE.

Tuesday, 6 February 2018

Date Day at Bob Bob Ricard


So with it actually being February now (finally, we all made it!) Valentine's is creeping round preeetty quickly and I can't even get myself a tesco meal deal without being bombarded with lame ass cards and generic love-heart embossed mugs, pencil cases, teddy bears etc. I firmly believe that Valentine's is great for everyone who wants to celebrate it, but as you can probably tell I just don't buy into the weird tacky side of things myself - I'd much rather spend my money on a really nice meal or something you can experience together, which is exactly what we did this weekend. 

Thursday, 25 January 2018

Stop sneering at ambition


Heyyy, so another topical post from me this week because I just can’t resist getting sharing my own two cents on these sorta things (what can I say I love a good natter) and unless you’ve been properly living under a rock recently I’m sure you’ll know exactly what I’m about to delve into. Yes *that* little internet moment involving a hotel and a blogger.

Sunday, 14 January 2018

You aren't worth more than me


Something that I can't - just really can’t - get my head around is the gender pay gap. So as a woman, you’re actually telling me that I’m going to do the EXACT same job as man, with the exact same results, hit the same KPI’s, generate the same amount of profit etc etc… but I’m going to be paid less because of what’s between my legs? Discrimination at its finest.

Thursday, 4 January 2018

2018: Acting more, thinking less


Well helllooooooo everybody and the HAPPIEST of New Years to you! So I've just done a little check and the last time I actually blogged on here was November, which means I'm definitely overdue a ramble. (I'm trying to crack a 'haven't even blogged THIS YEAR' joke but it's just gonna fall flat on it's arse so just appreciate the attempt was there.) Today I'm gonna talk about New Year's resolutions in general [brilliant or bollocks?] and then go on to discuss my own New Years' mantra, yes mantra.