15.4.14

Crush of the Week: Boohoo Boutique Bird Brocade Trousers

I really do have a penchant for a good pair of patterned trousers. For some people it's shoes, for others it's bags, but my little heart never fails to flip at the sight of shapes and squiggles embossed in fabric. When printed joggers, harem pants and high-waisted palazzos hit the high street last year, I was off on a rampage - I had to have them all, I had to have the title as SS2013 crazy print queen. Needless to say it is much to my delight that prints are back this season, which makes for the rare opportunity to recycle and restyle last year's wardrobe.

This week's crush comes from online retailer, Boohoo.com, with the Lacey Bird Brocade Trousers from their limited edition boutique range. The boutique range features pieces made with higher quality fabrics in addition to Boohoo's standard line of clothing and accessories.


Scottish Bitches
Lacey Bird Brocade Trousers by Boohoo, £25.00

Coming in at the price of £25.00, these trousers are marked at the lower-end of the Boohoo Boutique price range. The truth be told, I tend to find Boohoo's boutique range fairly uninspiring and overpriced, but from time to time a little gem like these brocade trousers does emerge.

The trousers sell themselves on a few key points - first being the straight cut and ankle-grazing length -  fitting in with the SS2014 micro-trend of cigarette trousers. This is further supported by the high-rise waistline - there is no longer the need to suck in all the excess winter tummy podge - these bad boys will cuddle it for you and streamline your figure. Last but not least, the winning factor has to be the rich print. Broken up with panels of navy and white, the floral and bird detail makes for an oriental vibe - I highly suspect the designers drew inspiration for these trousers from the Willow Pattern Plate story


Scottish Bitches
Image courtesy: Thepotteries.org - The Willow Pattern Plate

Whilst I am dubious about the majority of the Boohoo boutique collection, I do feel these trousers are truly gorgeous in design and at the price of £25.00 would make a great addition to the SS2014 wardrobe. Due to the vibrant nature of the trousers, I'd look to pair them with neutrals - perhaps a black cami or grey boyfriend t-shirt teamed with a tawny trench-coat, similar to mine below.


Scottish Bitches
Team a tawny trench to accentuate printed trousers.


What do you think of the brocade trousers? How would you style them?

Live by the catwalk, die by the donut. 

L x

10.4.14

How to conduct a Wardrobe Purge

Do you have a wardrobe that is about to burst open like a victim from "Alien?" Do you often cry in despair and utter the words "I have nothing to wear!" whilst sitting in front of a stuffed closet of clothes? Do you also have a floordrobe and have forgotten what the colour of your own bedroom carpet is? Are you unable to remember the last time you wore a pair of matching socks?

If you have answered yes to any of these questions, then unfortunately I have to tell you, your wardrobe is the place clothes go to die. It is the graveyard of fashion and no number of half-price sales or buy-one-get-one-free promotions are going to resuscitate it. 

The good news is a wardrobe purge might just do the trick. 


Scottish Bitches
A snapshot into my wardrobe. This lucky lot made the cut of my most recent purge!

Around a year ago, I conducted my first wardrobe purge. I'd been holding on to a ridiculous amount of clothing down to sentimental value and as a result, it was practically impossible to move about in my bedroom. Honestly, if you had seen it, you would have thought I was destined to appear on Extreme Hoarders. However, sense was talked into me, and I eventually conducted my first wardrobe purge.

Wardrobe purges are essential in order to maintain consistent style. By saturating your wardrobe with purchase after endless purchase without removing something in the process, it makes for a cluttered mindset. Believe me when I say, there really is such a thing as too much clothing. Not only does an overflowing wardrobe create space issues, but it can also knock down your confidence and lead to a frumpy, downtrodden and downright depressing sense of style.

Do not fear! I am here armed with my top tips to help you conduct your very own wardrobe purge!


Scottish Bitches
Don't forget to purge bags, accessories and shoes!

Adopt a ruthless mindset. Do you really need that pair of holey pyjamas from four years ago because your boyfriend's gran bought you them? If it has holes, get it binned! There is no excuse for it, no matter what personal value it has.

Struggling to let go of sentimental pieces? For various reasons, we can find it hard to let go of articles of clothing that are sentimental to us. In this instance, if you never wear the clothing and it is in good nick, put it into storage. That's what attics are for! 

Categorize. Organize your sweaters, dresses, shoes and accessories into designated areas. This system of organization is particularly helpful if you are like me, and tend to prefer to spend an extra fifteen minutes in bed and get ready in the mornings at superhuman speed. Translate your wardrobe to your grab-n-go lifestyle.

Anxious about letting go of new goods? The chances are if you're debating about chucking out  clothes with the tags still on, you're probably never going to wear them. On my most recent purge, I found a pair of unworn shoes with the tags still on that I had owned for an entire two years. In this instance, a great thing to do is to donate to charity shops. Charity shops thrive off of donations, particularly of new goods. You get the extra space whilst helping those in need. It's a win-win!

Store away seasonal pieces. Going into Spring/Summer? It is time to pack up the wool trousers, heavy coats and boots for a rainy day. Out of sight, out of mind!

Filter the boring stuff. Pair socks together. Untangle tights. Conduct a granny knickers audit. Sorting out the mundane things can make all the difference.

Conduct purges frequently. I recommend conducting a wardrobe purge once every six months. As we move from season to season, pieces will gradually become irrelevant. Keep on top of the chaos by purging frequently. 


Scottish Bitches
Simple tubs like the box shown above are relatively inexpensive and perfect for storage!

Conducting wardrobe purges can be both mentally and physically draining, so don't be surprised if it takes more than one day to effectively categorize your wardrobe. The important thing to remember is, by cutting down a massive wardrobe, choice becomes more refined. To quote the saying, "quality over quantity" conducting these purges will help to draw out the truly timeless and fantastic pieces you have and eliminate poor quality and trend-driven fads from your wardrobe. Give your wardrobe the love it truly deserves.

Do you have any tips for conducting a wardrobe purge?

Live by the catwalk, die by the donut.

L x




7.4.14

Crush of the Week: F&F Daisy Organza Pencil Skirt

The tussle between pastels and monochrome for the dominant place of favoured SS2014 trend within my heart has been decided. Despite being a 365-days-a-year fan of my beloved monochromatic scale, the reasoning of pastels having a seasonal time limit, the jury votes ice cream shades for summer! Naturally, being a red-head, I have an uncontrollable compulsion to clash everything with my hair and what better juxtaposition than a good colour wheel of pastels. It is the most logical decision I have made all year. 

In our new feature "Crush of the Week", we'll be selecting one piece that simply melts our protective impulse-buy hardened hearts. This week's piece comes from Florence and Fred (F&F) - known primarily as the clothing line delivered by supermarket giant, Tesco.

scottish bitches
F&F daisy organza pencil skirt - £16.00


My pick of the F&F daisy organza pencil skirt may come as a surprise, given that it is no secret that I am a die-hard fashion snob (repeat after me: classics over trends, quality over quantity) however, at the super-low price of £16.00, I'm inclined to say that this is the one trend piece that can take the hit.

This piece wins on several fronts - with the leading factor being the shade of pastel blue - this season's breakthrough pastel tone. Any fashion-devotee just needs to take a look at the overlay of daisies to recognise the inspiration F&F have drawn from the Louis Vuitton SS2012 collection - a collection which most definitely made our hearts feel as dizzy as the the carousel the models stepped off of. These factors combined with the midi-length also helps to tick the lady-like trend box too.


Scottish Bitches
Image courtesy: beilovebei.com, Louis Vuitton SS2012

That being said, it is important to remember that as the price-tag is low, it is a purely trend-driven piece. Despite Tesco bucking up their style game significantly with some seriously cool pieces this season, it is only natural to expect the piece to come in a lower-grade of fabric - something for sensitive-skin ladies to be mindful of, particularly where organza is involved. However at £16.00, what do you really expect?

It is a playful trend-piece and if you're looking to have fun with this season's pastel trend and don't mind the shelf-life of a budget piece, this skirt could be a great way to go about it. If you're channeling the co-ordinate trend this season, the F&F collection do offer a complimentary top with the same organza print, however, I feel due to the lower-grade fabric, it is important to style things up with quality wardrobe staples. Personally, I'd approach the skirt with my powder blue blazer and a little cropped white shirt or pastel-toned jumper.



Wear Eponymous Scottish Bitches
A blazer of the same tone can be the perfect compliment to a trend-piece.


What do you think of the F&F pencil skirt? How would you wear it?

Live by the catwalk, die by the donut.

L x



1.4.14

SS2014 Trend Guide: The Pastel Arsenal

Good grief, is it really April already? As the better weather rapidly approaches, it seems our spring/summer wardrobes are no laughing joke. This year, pastels make an unsurprising return, and whilst probably the most predictable summer trend after floral prints, those washed-out shades really do hold a place dear in my heart. Most likely because they are a walking tribute to ice-cream.

I have curated my very own pastel picks essential collection to help you survive the summer heat in style. 

Scottish Bitches
Fluffy jumper, £13.99 at Missguided.

The Fluffy Jumper

With the re-emergence of the 90s in full swing, mohair-inspired pieces are popping up all over the shop. For some, this jumper may be a touch too sickly sweet, but pairing with neutral tones and masculine silhouettes will help to neutralize the vibrancy. This jumper is available at Missguided for £13.99.


Scottish Bitches
Tea-length skirt, £20.00 at Boohoo.

 The Tea-Length Skirt

If you're still sporting aztec-print bodycon every day of the week, then quite frankly, you need to sort your life out. This season focuses on a-line midi skirts in pastel shades. SS2014 is all about enhancing lady-like femininity, which incidentally is also incredibly flattering for curvaceous ladies. This tea-length pastel dream is available at Boohoo for £20.00.

Scottish Bitches
Shirt dress, £85.00 at Topshop.

The Shirt Dress

Be still my heart! I am all about the boxy-silhouette this season. Short-sleeved shirts styles are in, meaning we no longer have to swelter with the long-sleeved chiffon charade of last summer. Shirt dresses are a great way to combine the boxy and pastel trends. This style require little accessorizing for a minimalist chic approach. This shirt dress is available at Topshop for £85.00.


Scottish Bitches Wear Eponymous
Powder-blue blazer, £44.99 at Wear Eponymous.

The Tailored Blazer

Whilst a pastel rainbow of tones are leading the season, the breakthrough shade is most definitely powder-blue. Investing in a blazer of pastel tones allows for versatility - teaming up with basics such as black skinnies and a grey t-shirt helps to translate a look from autumn/winter into spring. This blazer is available at Wear Eponymous for £44.99.



Scottish Bitches
Pastel green coat, £89.99 at Zara.

The Statement Coat

No trend is truly complete without a statement piece. This season, avoid neutrals and style up your staple wardrobe with pastel toned outerwear. Look to invest in a few key pieces - after all, your coat is likely to be the piece you wear the most out of your wardrobe. This coat is available from Zara at £89.99.


Scottish Bitches
Barry M Nail Paint in Blueberry, £3.99 at Superdrug.

The Nails

Wearing an outfit without painted nails is like wearing a fur coat with no knickers. Often, many forget to pay attention to the fine detail which can make or break an outfit. My pick for this season is Barry M's Gelly Hi-Shine nail paint in Blueberry. As with many Barry M paints, one coat usually suffices and lasts up to two weeks. You can this shade at Superdrug for £3.99.

What are your pastel picks this season?

Live by the catwalk, die by the donut. 

L x

27.3.14

Review: Carnegie Glasses by Glasses Now

Following my post on Spectacle Stigma, I was lucky enough to try a pair of Carnegie frames from optical online retailer, Glasses Now. A relatively new player to the retail scene, I did fair bit of investigation following Sheri's recommendations in my last post. After all, how good could glasses that were £50 really be?

The answer was really superb.


What do we want? Glasses! When do we want them? Now!

Packaging and Postage 

I had placed my order on Tuesday the 25th of March, fully expecting my frames to arrive at the earliest on Thursday the 27th. Given the fact my usual optician takes give or take around a century to post out my contact lenses, let alone put together lenses for a new frame, I was already pretty impressed at the estimated delivery times. Imagine my utter delight when no later than early the next morning I had the postman chapping on my door to deliver my new specs! In terms of packaging, the glasses were securely protected by a heavy-duty box and wrapped, the frames further fortified by a cute little glasses case.


Carnegie frame in A115B

The Product

Now, I will not lie. The idea of buying glasses online seemed like a very daunting concept to me. Would the prescription come out wrong? What if the frames did not suit me? I had a preconception that ordering online would be near to impossible unless you were an optician yourself. How wrong I was! The Glasses Now website is extremely user friendly - and this is coming from the person that took three years to learn how to use Twitter properly. The website is equipped with lots of useful advice but if you're still struggling at that point, there's also a very handy customer service number to phone too.

I ordered the Carnegie frame in model A115B - a rectangle frame with tan and tortoiseshell accents. Choosing a more masculine frame to compliment my cat-eye leopard print specs, I was unsure of how they would sit on my face. But I need not have feared for they sat perfectly. The specs have a very vintage-vibe feel to them - which, being a retro-nut makes me happier than being let loose on a buffet. I also happen to suffer from hamster cheeks, but these frames are very complimentary and slim my chubby chops right down!

The Verdict

Needless to say, I am absolutely bowled over by the high-end quality of the Carnegie product, especially given the fact the frames and lenses combined cost no more than £50! Not to mention "Glasses Now" practically embody their name - with the quickest delivery service I have ever experienced. Without a doubt, I will be returning to build on my growing glasses collection.

You can visit Glasses Now to pick up your own specs here.

Live by the catwalk, die by the donut. 

L x

24.3.14

Food for Thought: Spectacle Stigma

Scottish Bitches Glasses Stigma Fashion
Spotty specs - subtle has never been my strong suit!

"Oh, they're actually prescription!"

This is not an uncommon statement I receive whenever a peer has a go at trying on my glasses. Often mistaken for a fashion accessory, it would appear specs are cool once again. This, however, has not always been the case and it would appear a rather peculiar social stigma remains in place towards those who are poorly sighted. As my good friend put it to me earlier this week: -

"People who wear have to wear glasses often feel like their attractiveness gets knocked down a few points."

Any contact lens wearer will know fine well that some mornings applying lenses can be like rubbing your eyes with sandpaper and for hygiene reasons, it is a good idea to schedule some sort of break for your peepers. The reality is there is no good reason to avoid wearing your specs - they're practical and can help in preventing some medical afflictions including migraines, not to mention the fact there are now dedicated retailers supplying the chicest of spectacles to keep you right on trend.

When I was told I needed prescription glasses at the age of fourteen, the world did not stop for me. That was until I left the shop, went to school the following Monday and endured jibes from peers  about when I was due to appear on "Ugly Betty." To be fair, I did not help myself by opting to pick out the most obscure blue thick framed glasses - a crime against fashion, if I ever saw one! As I grew older, I swapped out my horrendous frames for contact lenses and an obligatory pair of designer specs and the feeling of gawky awkwardness slowly but surely diminished.

Leopard Print Glasses Scottish Bitches
Do you dread wearing specs?
But, one must ask the question - does a social stigma remain towards those who wear glasses? Why is it people express feelings of low self-esteem as a result of wearing a prescriptive set of accessories? Is it the negative portrayal of glasses in popular culture - television shows, cartoons and other media? Or is it more a personal stigma, egged on by the perception of few choice comments made by others in the early years?

I consulted PR maven and blogger, Sheri Scott from Forever Yours Betty on the matter. Well known throughout the Glasgow blogger scene for her iconic specs, Sheri has worn glasses from infancy due to astigmatism:

"I think I experienced my own stigma when it came to wearing glasses. High School wasn't the best time for me but I don't think glasses had anything to do with it. When I went to the Cathouse (Club) unders', I used to take my glasses off as I thought that boys didn't look twice at girls who wore them."  I challenged Betty on the stigma and her reply was empowering, "Everyone who wears glasses on a full time basis has experienced the 'specky' comments and the usual slurs, but it's not that I don't let it get to me - I think people who say things like that out loud are not even worth a death stare." 

Scottish Bitches Forever Yours Betty
Sheri from Forever Yours Betty is iconic on the Scottish style scene for her specs.

Blogger El from Fill Your Cups also contributed, "I've only been wearing glasses for four years, so I'm fairly new to the spectacle scene. As such I have never experienced any stigma or name calling. I was lucky enough to get my glasses when the trend of wearing them was 'in'." El continued to elaborate, "I was nervous to wear my glasses at first, however with confidence I found I carried them off as part of my look and began to receive compliments on my eye-wear. They're a part of me now."

Sympathizing with both Sheri and El, a lot of my own stigma goes back to infantile comments made in the playground, of which acted as a mould for my own self-confidence and personal style. As I grew into my late teens and twenties, I found myself opting to use glasses as an accessory as opposed to a limitation.

"The key to wearing glasses is to get more than one pair. I know that sounds ridiculous and you may think "they are so expensive" but really, you just don't know where to shop. The way I see it, ask yourself about how many pairs of shoes or handbags you own for different outfits, why would you only choose one style for you face?" Advises Sheri, "Try on loads - even if you don't quite know why you like the frame, try it on. Find the shapes you like and shop around - there are plenty of places which offer free lenses, anti-glare, buy one get one free, etc. Websites like Glasses Now do frames and lenses for £50 and at Pretavoir most lenses are included in the frame price."


scottish bitches LFW Glasses
Specs are a common sight at LFW, so why wouldn't you wear yours?

With the rise of "geek-chic" it appears the social stigma is turning on itself and whilst an element of playground chiding still exists, much of the stigma is self-inflicted. As spectacle-wearer, interviewing El and Sheri was an eye-opening experience (pardon the pun) and most definitely allowed me to reflect upon the true roots of spectacle stigma. As a result, I may just have to embrace my spotty specs with the love and adoration they deserve.

Live by the catwalk, die by the donut.

L x

22.3.14

OOTD: Camel Turban

Geo Trend Fashion Style Scottish Bitches
SS2014 "Geo" Trend

Although it is arguably very much still winter in Scotland, I am all about embracing this season's "geo" trend - that is a combination of navajo and aztec prints, as well as an emphasis on a tawny brown colour palette - think "if Mother Nature did a runway." 

Scottish Bitches Style
Do you dare wear a turban?

I've recently ventured into utilizing the turban as an accessory and whilst I appreciate I am a bit late to the game in regards to the SS2013 20's trend, I have to ask can such a timeless piece really fall out of fashion? Arguable difficult to style, in my opinion there are only two ways to truly pull the turban off - either teamed with tame but classic pieces as depicted here, or go for the Kate-Bush-out-your-nut bohemian chic look. You know what I mean -the maxi skirts, the over-accessorizing, the kimonos - natural turban territory.

Look out this season for tailored pieces - particularly in the way of cigarette trousers. Turn-up detail like featured in the photos above are an instant sophistication booster. Teaming trews with heels will help to inject a forward-thinking vibe into the outfit, but for comfort whilst retaining the appropriate levels of style, opt for a pair of Oxford brogues.

Scottish Bitches Style Fashion 2014
Comfortable but stylish shoes? Must be Oxford brogues.

 
Turban - Ebay
Jumper - Thrifted
High-waisted Camel Trousers - H&M
Faux Leather Jacket - Primark
Brogues - Primark

Live by the catwalk, die by the donut.

L x