Hem and Away: Seattle Day #6

Picture taken from The End Summer Camp

RECAP: I (Jo) am currently on vacation in Seattle! I thought it might be fun to try and keep a little holiday diary of sorts, a travelog if you will. You can read about Day 1 here and Day 2 here and Days 3/4/5 here! So sit back and grab a cup of coffee, She and Hem is going Stateside.

Over the weekend we headed to Redmond, which is just to the East of Seattle. It’s most famously known as the home of global conglomerate, Microsoft, whose presence is most definitely felt throughout! It really feels like the entire town center exists purely for its employees and is almost Disneyesque in its cleanliness and neatness. Anyway, as much as we would have loved to discuss Windows with Bill, our purpose for being in Redmond was to attend The End 107.7′s Summer Camp!

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Our hotel was a fair walk to the venue but luckily for us we stumbled across the Redmond Saturday Fair. We may or may not have bought a massive slice of cake. Tasty.

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Set in the glorious surroundings of Marymoor Park, The End 107.7’s Summer Camp was a real treat. Marymoor is an absolutely stunning place to have concerts!  It is, after all, a 640 acre park that boasts  its own velodrome amongst the recreational activities on offer. The part in which they put on concerts is not only beautiful, but very practical too. The stage is surrounded by a grassy bank, meaning families, picnic goers and people who aren’t teenagers anymore can take in all the action from a comfortable position. Not having brought the family, or having the foresight to pack a picnic, we fell into the final of those categories and perched ourselves atop the grassy knoll.  Just as we had bought ourselves some beer and a steak baguette, we were beginning to think that it was all a bit too perfect….

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………and then a familiar sight to any British festival goer appeared, as the umbrellas which had been used for sun protection, suddenly became the defense against a much damper entity. The good news however was that this sinister shower was short lived, didn’t result in copious amounts of mud and, truth be told, was actually rather refreshing! Despite our lack of umbrella we stayed put and soon dried out once the rain had receded.

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The highlight of the day for me was undeniably Surfer Blood, pictured above. Apologies if you were sat anywhere near me and my bad singing! The line up was pretty stellar throughout though, with Wavves, Family of the Year, Hey Marseilles and MS MR all sounding great in the sunshine. New Politics proved very entertaining with their extremely energetic performance! We did appear to be the only people present who hadn’t heard of them. Cold War Kids had the privilege of closing the night out during a rather beautiful sunset,

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I wore a Gap vest top with my Cath Kidston train skirt and my Topshop shoes. My bag is also from Cath Kidston and I bought a new hat in Redmond Town Centre from a shop called REI. I was certainty grateful for the extra bit of sun protection!

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Jx

She and Home: Bristol Balloon Fiesta 2013

This weekend almost 500,000 people from near and far headed to Ashton Court to enjoy over 100 hot air balloons at the 35th Bristol International Balloon Fiesta. After watching the balloons drift across Bristol from Clifton Suspension Bridge on Thursday evening, I was really keen to head over to Ashton Court to get closer to the action. Unfortunately for me, I choose the only evening that the balloons were unable to fly due to the strong wind at ground level. Nevertheless, I had a fantastic time enjoying the free entertainment, relaxing in the sunshine and catching a glimpse of the few balloons that managed to tether in the arena.

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Alongside the balloon ascents, nightglows, red arrows and other balloon related fun there was plenty of other things to keep visitors occupied over at the fiesta. There was an enormous fun fair, a busy band stand, the Wii U den, Noah’s Ark Farm and my personal favourite, the food village. With the amount of freebies I munched on during the day I was too full for a cheeky Grillstock .

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I found the perfect spot to watch the balloons tethering yesterday evening, a huge red deckchair in the Heart FM area. No sighting of Stuart the Minion, but I was lucky enough to see him in the air over the weekend, as seen above.

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I wore my Martha’s Air of Adorable Dress by Modcloth, seen here in the Modcloth style gallery, and my light blue sunglasses from Primark. So many people commented on how ‘appropriate’ the dress was, I think they thought I was some kind of genius. If only they knew the truth…

If you would like to visit the fiesta next year, it is due to run from Thursday 7th August to Sunday 10th August 2014. I will definitely be there, so in the meantime I’ll be searching for a new hot air balloon dress!

V x

Hem and Away: Seattle Days #3,4 & 5

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RECAP: I (Jo) am currently on vacation in Seattle! I thought it might be fun to try and keep a little holiday diary of sorts, a travelog if you will. You can read about Day 1 here and Day 2 here! So sit back and grab a cup of coffee, She and Hem is going Stateside.20130811-201211.jpg

Wednesday marked the beginning of the three days of this trip which I would be spending on my own. I know for a lot of people being alone on holiday would be a great chance to indulge in doing things that only you want to do, but I am not one of those people. I am much happier exploring in a couple or as part of a group! With that in mind,  I  have decided to amalgamate the highlights from days 3, 4  & 5 as I spent most of my time watching Boy Meets World, swimming in the hotel pool and eating. I know, pretty awful right?

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One of the highlights of my time alone came when I decided to grab my book (The Humans by the excellent Matt Haig, book lovers) and head to the International Fountain. Like a number of Seattle’s attractions, the fountain was originally built for the 1962 World’s fair but was completely replaced in 1995 to be what it is today. I can best describe it as a ginormous great bowl in which rests a giant silver dome that spurts out water in all directions, in time to music. It would be quite the spectacle on its own but on such a gloriously hot day it really was incredible fun watching hundreds of children (and adults) frolic about trying to dodge the water. I, rather naively, didn’t realise at first that the dome would be changing up its routine and gaily sat upon the edge of the bowl and cracked open my book. After a few moments appreciating the lovely mist that was landing on me, I found myself getting completely drenched, much to the amusement of the people near me (and to me too), and had to skedaddle to safer ground! It was brilliant! I also jumped the first time the central ‘super-shooter’ shot water out over 100 feet in the air, complete with dramatic boom!

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One evening, after James returned from work, we decided to take a walk up (and up and up and up) to Kerry Park to watch the sunset. As we were a little early, we decided to head to Molly Moon’s, which had come highly recommended from a number of people. After my incredible ice-cream experience at Mora’s on Day 2, I was well up for some more cold creamery creations! After a lot of deliberating, I went for a scoop of balsamic strawberry, whereas James went for Earl Grey. Both were mind-blowingly fantastic and I am now convinced that Seattle should be known as the ice-cream capital of the world! We are definitely going to be heading back up the hill to try out some more of their flavours!

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Dress from Ever Ours (click for link)

With that, we walked back to Kerry Park to watch the most impossibly perfect sunset. We weren’t alone, it’s quite the destination for tourists as you get the postcard perfect view of Seattle’s famous  skyline.

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As well as watching Boy Meets World, another television highlight was spotting myself on Broadchurch! It was incredibly bizarre to see myself on TV in America, even if it was only for 10 seconds!

Jx

Wish List – Chi Chi

It’s Wish List time again Friday funsters. There is currently a fab competition over at etailPR here, offering a chance to win £200 to spend at Chi Chi. I just could not resist entering as Chi Chi have some absolutely stunning pieces that I would love to get my styling hands on! I’ve decided to do something a little different and pick my favourite dress from each category on the site. Enjoy!

Party Dress

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Mollie Dress, £43.99, Chi Chi

Evening Gown/Maxi Dress

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Rebekah Dress, £48.99, Chi Chi

Day Dress

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Bryana Dress, £39.99, Chi Chi

Cocktail Dress

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Prudencia Dress, £46.99, Chi Chi

Prom Dress

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Megan Dress, £43.99, Chi Chi

Bandage Dress

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Yasmin Dress, £129.99, Chi Chi

Have a wonderful weekend,

V x

Hem and Away: Seattle Day #2

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RECAP:  I (Jo) am currently on vacation in Seattle! I thought it might be fun to try and keep a little holiday diary of sorts, a travelog if you will. You can read about Day 1 here! So sit back and grab a cup of coffee, She and Hem is going Stateside.

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Day 2 of my Seattle adventure began as all good days should, with an outstanding breakfast. We headed to Citizen Coffee as it is located just a couple of blocks from our hotel and boy oh boy did it deliver! It’s a charming cafe (with a licence, booze fans) that promises a creative and unique menu, as well as some cracking crepes. I plumped for a turkey crepe which was jam packed (literally) with turkey, brie, onions, avocado and, of course, raspberry jam! I washed it down with a lavender latte as I couldn’t resist trying it out.  It was all outrageously yummy and considering its close proximity to the hotel, I find it hard to believe I won’t be going back for more!

DSC_0421 DSC_0432 DSC_0436After all that food, a much needed walk was on the cards! James and I are keen sports fans, so it figured that we should head to the other side of town to check out the stadiums of the Seahawks (American Football), the Sounders (Proper Football) and the Mariners (Baseball). I couldn’t get over the scale of the stadiums, they are enormous!  We didn’t really fancy going on a tour, but as the Mariners were due to play that very evening, we decided to buy some tickets and head back later.

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We then caught the ferry over to Bainbridge Island, which takes about 30 minutes. All the guide books suggest that this is the best way to view the Seattle skyline and I have to say I whole heartedly agree! It’s absolutely breathtaking and offered our first glimpse of Mount Rainier. We had picked up a couple of cans of DRY soda on our way to the ferry, which we cracked open once on board. They were extremely refreshing and well timed considering the heat on the boat’s sundeck! I had plumped for cucumber as, once again, I just couldn’t resist trying something slightly unusual in flavour! I now want to campaign for more cucumber flavoured drinks!

DSC_0461 DSC_0487 DSC_0491Bainbridge is a lovely island and extremely picturesque. We had a lovely time exploring the boardwalk and admiring the stone statues next to the marina.

DSC_0471DSC_0477DSC_0480DSC_0484The star attraction of the island for me was Mora Ice Creamery! You always know something is going to be extra special when there is a line out the door! It was very hard to decide on just one flavour, so naturally we each went for two! James went for lemon bar and cheesecake with brownies, whereas I went for a startling combination of green tea and lavender! It was certainly an extra special ice-cream and I was, coincidentally, appropriately dressed for such an occasion in my ice-cream print dress from New Look.

DSC_0523DSC_0507DSC_0527 DSC_0531It was then time to head to the Safeco Field for the Seattle Mariners vs the Toronto Blue Jays! Our seats were very high up which provided a great view of not just the baseball but also the Space Needle! The atmosphere at the game was very friendly, fun and at times completely bizarre! The jumbo screen is constantly in entertainment mode from showing shots of the crowd, running quizzes and, my personal favourite moment, the awarding of the traditional gigantic turkey leg (!?!) to the craziest fan . All this adds up to a bonkers and brilliant night of sport although, as is typical whenever I head to an American sporting event, the home-side lost. Sorry, Mariners!

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Sadly, I was not the lucky recipient.

Jx

Hem and Away: Totnes Champagne Tea

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Last weekend me and my other half had a glorious weekend away in the Devon. We took the opportunity to visit a few places we had heard great things about and we were not disappointed.

I am a sucker for hunting for 6ft novelty animals, so the Gromit Unleashed trail currently happening in Bristol and beyond is right up my street. Luckily for me, I also have a super understanding boyf who very kindly plotted us a route to include a few of the out of town Gromits on route to Devon. Gromit Unleashed post to come soon! A pleasant surprise met us at our first Gromit stop, Lye Cross Farm, in the form of Dorothy The Food Hut Bus serving delicious tea and cake, and although we were on route to a cream tea, we just could not resist popping in.

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Polka-dot Dress, Primark.

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After driving for an hour or so we reached our hotel, the gorgeous Sampsons Farm, where we had a delicious Champagne Tea. Oh my, how spoilt I felt as the waiter suggested we have our food on our balcony in the sunshine and delivered endless amounts of sandwiches, cake, home baked scones with clotted cream, pots of tea and a lovely bottle of champagne on ice. If only every weekend could start like this…

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Train Dress, Cath Kidston.

After over indulging and filling ourselves to bursting point, we decided to take a leisurely walk alongside the River Teign, stopping along the way for few games of Pooh Sticks.

Saturday was all about Totnes, with its numerous cafes, bakeries, independent music and clothes shops, plus the beautiful castle and churches, it is a delightful place to spend a day.

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Cat Top, Modcloth and Zatchel.

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The real highlight for me was the Totnes Cat Cafe. I had a great time drinking coffee while making friends with Mango, Rolo and co. When you arrive you get given a box of cat treats and are invited to spend as long as you wish hanging with the moggies. The cats, and their staff, are very friendly and sociable. I thoroughly recommend Totnes Cat Cafe to any cat fan.

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Me and Glee.
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Lilac, Rolo and Glee.
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Cheeky Lilac!

South West is Best. I can’t wait to go back!

V x

Hem and Away: Seattle Day #1

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Hey there!

Those of you who follow us on Twitter will be aware that I (Jo) am currently on vacation in Seattle! I thought it might be fun to try and keep a little holiday diary of sorts, a travelog if you will. So sit back and grab a cup of coffee, She and Hem is going Stateside.

Now, first things first, I make no secret of the fact that I LOVE America. It’s my spiritual home and makes me feel oh-so-super-happy. This, however, is my first time visiting Seattle!  It is my life ambition to visit all 50 states, and with Washington being my 25th, I’m feeling pretty chuffed to have hit the half-way mark! I’m hoping that once I hit 50 I will unlock a secret bonus 51st state. I probably definitely played too many video games as a child.

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After a cheeky lie in after a long day of travel, the first thing on the agenda was a trip on the monorail! The monorail was built in 1962 for the World’s Fair and still connects the Seattle Center (where the Space Needle is) with Downtown today. It was certainty very quick, covering the mile long track in a matter of minutes, and was a lot of fun too!

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Without fail, everyone who have I discussed going to Seattle with has recommended going to Pike Place Market, and with good reason! It’s absolutely alive with activity! It was created over a century ago when the people of Seattle grew tired of paying extortionate amounts of money for food and produce, with Pike Place Market being a place where you could ‘Meet the Producer’. It covers 9 acres and although I didn’t quite manage everything today, I had a fantastic time sampling chocolate covered cherrys, watching the much lauded fish throwing and meeting a giant pig called Rachel! I’ll definitely be going back for another nose around later in the week,

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Just underneath Pike Place Market, in Post Alley, is this huge Gum Wall! It’s sort of pretty and gross all at the same time, I suppose you could say it’s pretty gross! Especially as in 2009 it was listed as one of the top germiest tourist attractions in the world! People started sticking their gum to the wall, which is next to the Market Theater,  in 1993. After a couple of attempts at scraping the gum off, they gave up and let it become the tourist attraction it has become today.

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After purchasing a City Pass, we decided that a harbour tour was in order and hopped aboard an Argosy Cruise.  The hour tour was a brilliant way to see the Seattle skyline and the on-board narrator was extremely interesting and informative. We learn’t all about the different piers, the history of some of the neighbourhoods and buildings, and had a fascinating look at the shipping terminals and container ships. I could hardly contain-er my excitement.

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After an hour of sitting in the sun (it was 29 degrees today) we decided to use another of our City Pass vouchers and visit the Aquarium.  It was excellent fun looking at all the fish! I especially enjoyed the octopus and the touching tanks – I stroked a starfish!

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It was then time for a little wander around the Olympic Sculpture Park, a free outdoor park full of permanent and visiting art works. I loved Heather Hart’s temporary installation, “The Western Oracle: We Will Tear the Roof Off the Mother”,  a rooftop construction that visitors can climb on.

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For my first day exploring the city, I wore my polka-dot shorts from Miss Selfridge, a t-shirt from Topshop and my trusty white shoes, also from Topshop. My bag is from Cath Kidston and my glasses are Red or Dead.
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I’m off to bed now! Have a wonderful Tuesday, y’all.

Jx

All hail the sale

We have gone sale mad here and are set to hit the sales this weekend. Dresses from £5, yes please! If you are not able to get to the shops before the sales finish, check out our favourite online sale items below from Tatty Devine, Dahlia, Tesco, New Look, Oliver Bonas, Fox and Feather and H&M. If it rains I’ll be racing you to the online checkout. Kerching!

Phoebe Neon Yellow Stripe Skater Dress £30.00 (was £62.00) from Dahlia
Phoebe Neon Yellow Stripe Skater Dress £30.00 (was £62.00) from Dahlia
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Elephant Head Necklace £15.00 (was £21.00) from Tatty Devine
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F&F Limited Edition Floral Peter Pan Shift Dress £14.00 (was £28.00) from Tesco
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Miss Real Blue Floral Jacquard Bow Dress £9.00 (was £29.99) New Look
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Pineapple Pop Necklace £10.00 (was £16.00) from Oliver Bonas
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Louche Schnauzer Teal Animal Jumper £34.00 (was £49.00) from Fox and Feather
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Jersey Dress £5 (was £14.99) from H&M

If you know anywhere that has a great sale at the moment, tweet us @sheandhem and let us know.

V x

All hail the sale

Merry Friday everyone!

As we near the end of sale season, a number of our favourites are currently reducing items even further, rejoice! We’ve rounded up our current picks from Yumi, Sugarhill Boutique, Oliver Bonas, Lashes of London, Ollie & Nic, Joy and Oasis. Let’s have a look at those all important discounts!

Neckline Detail Knit Tunic Dress £20 (was £45) from Yumi
Colourful House Print Dress £22.50 (was £45) from Yumi
Brighton Rock Blouse £25 (was £36) from Sugarhill Boutique
Vintage Butterfly Earrings £8 (was £16) from Oliver Bonas
Elwick Silk Butterly Blouse £14.40 (was £48) from Lashes of London
Suki Cat Print Purse £10 (was £28) from Ollie & Nic
Fuchsia Giraffe Scarf £18 (was £28) from Ollie & Nic
Leanna Spot Collar Dress £30 (was £59) by Louche from Joy
Silhouette Butterfly Scarf £6 (was £20) from Oasis

That’s all for now! Have you spotted any bargains? or will you just be pleased to be able to walk into a shop without tripping over sale rails? Gets a bit messy, doesn’t it?

Jx

Double Thumbs Dresses #10

Goodness me! It’s time for our weekly round up of all those lovely dresses that receive the highly coveted She and Hem Double Thumbs Up seal of approval.

Comic Adventure Mini Dress £80 by Joyrich from ASOS

KAPOW! This super fun Joyrich dress from ASOS makes me want to embrace my inner superhero (It’s Thumbage Girl, for those who are asking)  and sort out the most dastardly of crimes. Crimes of fashion that is, I’m not crazy.

Carmine Dress £34 (was £69) by Louche from Fox and Feather

This little beauty of a Louche dress is currently on sale (with all sizes currently showing as in stock) at Fox and Feather, yippee! It’s made from an absolutely beautiful shimmering fabric which really makes the greens and pinks stand out. It has a great high neckline but beware underwear fans, it does plunge at the back.

Penny Babydoll Dress in Spearmint Daisy Applique £40 from Motel

This beautiful vintage inspired dress from Motel is available in this rather refreshing spearmint colour. I really love the pretty floral applique, it makes the dress so dainty. For me this is the perfect holiday dress as I know I could throw it with sandals and head to the beach but it would work just as well at home with tights, boots and a trip to the pub. Anyone know where I can find a beach pub?

Yellow Floral Print Dress £39.95 (was £79.95) from Joules

Oh Joules, this dress is a bit perfect! I adore the flattering 50’s cut and the colour and print are just dreamy. It’s on sale at the moment and getting hold of certain sizes might be a trifle tricky. The good news is I have noticed sizes coming back into stock so it’s worth checking the website, as well as in store.

Cream Tapestry V-Neck Tea Dress £22.99 from New Look

I can’t be the only person who has noticed how completely fabulous New Look has been recently? This gorgeous vintage style tapestry dress is a prime example of the sort of beautiful piece they are putting out for the budget conscious shopper, i.e everyone. I love the thick, expensive looking fabric and the pretty floral print.

Perdita Floral Smock Dress £55 from Lashes of London

Pass me a fan, I might need a little lie down! The colours of this dress are simply out of this world, they are just stunning. Lashes of London are so great at putting out creative, unique and beautiful items. I love love love the neckline, the lovely turn up sleeves and of course the big, bold floral print. Well done, everyone.

Skater Dress With Pug Print £25 from ASOS

Never one to shy away from a novelty print, this pug print dress from ASOS ticks all the right boxes. You’d be barking mad not to love it!  I love the flattering shape and the fun print, and better still the easy-wear jersey fabric means it’s a great holiday buy as it won’t crease in the suitcase! Winner!

Contrast Collar Dress in Tile Print £48 by Cooperative from Urban Outfitters

Welcome to the 60’s, courtesy of Cooperative at Urban Outfitters. I love the quirky print, which definitely has a touch of the kaleidoscope about it and the contrast of the deep red with the crisp white colour is rather lovely.  It’s a loose fit, so perhaps won’t suit everyone but if you like a retro shape then this one is a winner.

That’s all for this week!

Jx