Hem and Away: Iceland Part Two

She and Hem| Blue LagoonWhen visiting Iceland, it’s pretty much guaranteed that you will at some point be lured in by the geothermal paradise that is the Blue Lagoon. Its popularity is certainly helped by its proximity to the airport and it’s not uncommon to see coach loads of tourists dropping their suitcases off to take a final swim before fleeing the country. We didn’t do the airport dash, deciding instead to dedicate an entire day to wallowing in the lagoon. I do so love a good wallow.

We still had our little hire car from the previous days’ adventures but, like with everything else, you could easily book yourself on a coach tour to the lagoon should you wish to. It took about 45 minutes to drive there from Reyjkavik.

She and Hem| Blue LagoonShe and Hem| Blue Lagoon

Considering that Iceland is a country famed for its phenomenal natural scenery, it’s perhaps surprising that one of its most visited attractions is entirely man-made. Don’t let that put you off though! Even the most snobbish of Tripadvisor reviewers have conceded that it is a spectacular attraction. From the moment you put your foot into the hot (sometimes even too hot!) water, you realise that this is going to be an extraordinary time and the steam coming off of the water creates an almost otherworldly atmosphere.

We fully indulged in the free silca mud masks, the lagoon bar (which is IN the lagoon. No cold bits here) and spent time in steam room and sauna. It’s really was bliss!

She and Hem| Blue Lagoon

In Iceland, public bathing (among everything else) does not come cheap! The basic entrance fee will set you back about £30 or for £50 you get a towel, robe, drink and some skin care treatments thrown in. Our day was actually a birthday present so we went the whole hog and had the £80 ’Premium Experience’. This gets you all of the above plus slippers (deal breaker) and, perhaps more excitingly, a two course meal at their LAVA restaurant. I’ll admit I bawked at the £80 price tag, especially as all of the packages allow you unlimited time in the lagoon, but I am not lying when I tell you that the pudding I had as part of my meal was, hands down, the best thing I have ever eaten. It nearly reduced me to tears.

She and Hem| Blue LagoonShe and Hem| Blue LagoonMy lagoon look was very kindly gifted to me by George at Asda. I adore the fun colour and print of this fruits bikini*, which coped admirably with the geothermic water and survived the all important heavy duty pool shower test! As someone who goes through a lot of sunglasses, I was really excited to discover that most of George’s come in at under the £4 mark. Oh, hello! I fell instantly for these multicoloured frames*! Sunglasses should always be fun!

Jx

Hem and Away: Iceland Part One

Hem and Away | Iceland Part One

Halló all! If you follow us on Instagram, you will no doubt be all too familiar with the fact that I spent my Easter holiday in beautiful Iceland! I’ve got a few posts lined up about my time in Reykjavik but I thought I would begin with my travels to the Golden Circle.

Hem and Away | Iceland Part One Hem and Away | Iceland Part OneHem and Away | Iceland Part OneHem and Away | Iceland Part One

Hem and Away | Iceland Part One
| Bag by Zatchels | Coat by Boden* | Shorts by George* | Caridgan by Gap| Tights by George| Scarf by Marks and Spencer | Glasses (pictured above) by Amazon | Hat (pictured below) by Marks and Spencer |

Reykjavik is well geared up for tourists and there are any number of tour operators offering coach trips to the Golden Circle and beyond. We decided to shun the coach tour in favour of hiring a car and driving the route ourselves. This is also a popular, and well catered for option as it means you can go at your own pace and, if you’re like me, means avoiding the stress of getting travel sick whilst surrounded by strangers.

We hired our car from Hertz and went for the cheapest option available but paid extra for a GPS system (necessary!). I’ll admit I haven’t looked into the comparison but I’ve heard that hiring a car is actually a much cheaper way of doing it and we certainty had no regrets. Our little car coped admirably with the snow and it even included seat warmers and an iPhone charger. Luxurious! 

The Golden Circle is a popular route for tourists as it takes in three of Iceland’s most spectacular sights, the Pingvellir national park, the geothermally active Haukadalur and the mammoth waterfall Gullfoss. It’s about a 190 mile round trip from Reykjavik so if you do decide to drive it yourself, bare that in mind!                                                       Hem and Away | Iceland Part OneHem and Away | Iceland Part OneHem and Away | Iceland Part One Hem and Away | Iceland Part OneHem and Away | Iceland Part OneHem and Away | Iceland Part OneWe went on Easter Sunday and it was an extremely magical day! Just driving through the snowy mountains was beautiful enough but each of the three main stops on the drive proved to be equally spectacular! We stood in awe at the beauty of Pingvellir, got a little overexcited at watching the geysirs erupt at Haukadalur and were stunned by the magnificent Gulfoss waterfall. There aren’t really enough superlatives to describe it all.

Hem and Away | Iceland Part OneHem and Away | Iceland Part OneHem and Away | Iceland Part OneWe added an extra stop on our way home as we really wanted to see the Kerið volcanic crater lake. Apparently Bjork once played here on a raft. Can you imagine!

Jx

London Fashion Week AW14: Éthologie by Jasper Garvida

Ethologie by Jasper Gavardia

Now we know that London Fashion Week was a couple of months ago, but we both felt that these images from Éthologie by Jasper Garvida really needed sharing. Who doesn’t want to see an (even more) stylish version of Joseph’s Technicolour Dreamcoat?!

The show was packed and the clothes were as dramatic as its opening salsa performance. The bird sound inspired tango soundtrack was rivaled only by the feline masterpiece which accompanied Orla Kiely’s AW14 show.

Here are some of our favourite pieces from the collection. Enjoy!

She and Hem - Ethologie by Jasper Gavardia - London Fashion Week

She and Hem - Ethologie by Jasper Gavardia - London Fashion Week She and Hem - Ethologie by Jasper Gavardia - London Fashion WeekShe and Hem - Ethologie by Jasper Gavardia - London Fashion Week She and Hem - Ethologie by Jasper Gavardia - London Fashion Week She and Hem - Ethologie by Jasper Gavardia - London Fashion WeekShe and Hem - Ethologie by Jasper Gavardia - London Fashion WeekShe and Hem - Ethologie by Jasper Gavardia - London Fashion Week

Roll on SS15!

V&Jx

Best Blogging Duo

Outfit of the Day: Spring in to Florals

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“Florals? For spring? Ground breaking.” – Miranda Priestly

So, we know we aren’t introducing a revolutionary new trend here, but some things are just supposed to go together, like Fred and Ginger, Fred and Barney and Fred and George Weasley. Floral patterns in Springtime just go, ok? Although neither of us wear shirts very often, we absolutely could not resist these United Colours of Benetton printed beauties. Like Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone, they just look so good together! Caution, this post contains more flowers than your Grandma’s favourite garden centre.

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While I was pulling about a billion items out of my wardrobe to wear with this very pink Benetton shirt*, the above Primark skirt was a bit of a ‘This will never go, but what the hell, let’s try it!’ eureka moment. It’s not a subtle outfit that’s for sure, but after our little photo session, I really fell in love with the whole look. I can’t blinking wait to wear it again now the weather is fine and dandy. The red belt is from New Look, the pastel bracelet is from Accessorize and the blue sunglasses are also Primark.

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Jo teamed her lilac floral shirt, also from Benetton*, with cute polka-dot shorts from Miss Selfridge, shoes from Primark and a black belt from ASOS. Her lush peach glasses, which get compliments wherever we go, are from Topshop.  You wouldn’t catch us without our heart sunglasses, which you can find at Amazon!

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With all that posing, I think we’ve earned a treat, so let’s all scoff some Easter chocolate in the sunshine!

V&J

Double Thumbs Dresses #35

Hooray! It’s time once again for our weekly round up of the lovely dresses that receive the highly coveted She and Hem Double Thumbs Up seal of approval.

Bella Dress £55 from White Stuff
Bella Dress £55 from White Stuff

The top spot this week goes to this gorgeous geometric floral print dress from White Stuff. I love everything about it!

Limelight Dress £250 from Coast
Limelight Dress £250 from Coast

I think Coast are under the false impression that we all secret live in a Disney movie. Why else would they make possibly the most Disney Princess worthy dress I have ever seen? It’s so sparkly and BIG and I really really wish I had somewhere to wear it.

Rajaa Dress £49 by Louche from Fox and Feather
Rajaa Dress £49 by Louche from Fox and Feather

Lovely Louche have done it again with this sweet woodland print dress, which you can order online from Bristol Based Fox + Feather. It’s such a cute 50s shape, with great big buttons and a lovely pastel tree print.

Rock n Rollers Dress in Red Deckchairs £55 from Trollied Dolly
Rock n Rollers Dress in Red Deckchairs £55 from Trollied Dolly

Wahey! It’s another deckchair print dress! The She and Hem print of 2014 and my new favourite! There’s really a lot to love about this Trollied Dolly frock but, aside from those deckchairs, look at that whopping great bow!

Sweet Embroidery Sweetheart Dress £45 by Nishe from ASOS
Sweet Embroidery Sweetheart Dress £45 by Nishe from ASOS

I’ve been waiting for this Nishe dress to hit the ASOS website! I adore those little sweets, although I do wish there were more of them. Such is life.

Charlie Cat Dress £69 from NW3 at Hobbs
Charlie Cat Dress £69 from NW3 at Hobbs

I think we all know by now that I am a sucker for a cat print! I love the simplicity of this Hobbs dress, which is covered in lots of little black cats. I’d probably swap the belt for something a bit brighter and a bit less ropey though. But that’s just me.

Stamp Print Linen Fit Flare Dress £63.75 (was £85) from Laura Ashley
Stamp Print Linen Fit Flare Dress £63.75 (was £85) from Laura Ashley

I feel it is my duty to show you this stamp print dress!! I love the retro vibe and, as always, Laura Ashley have channeled the 50s to perfection.

Floral Sateen Dress £36.95 from Gap
Floral Sateen Dress £36.95 from Gap

Last up this week is this lovely dress which I spotted whilst in Gap. I was drawn to it because it has pockets but it’s so much more than that. It’s floral too.

Jx

PS If you love reading Double Thumbs Dresses then do please consider nominating us for the Company Style Blogger Awards 2014 in the Best Duo category. Imagine how big my double thumbs will be if we get shortlisted. PRETTY BIG is the answer.

She and Home: Bath in Fashion 2014

Last weekend BFF Ellie and I traveled the short distance to Bath for a bloggers event aimed at showcasing next month’s Bath in Fashion. We were treated to tea and nibbles at the rather magnificent Royal Crescent Hotel, where we were talked through this year’s program of events. If you are local to Bath, or willing to travel, it really is worth a look.

She and Hem| Bath in Fashion

Bath in Fashion is trying to build not just on the city’s fashionable heritage but also its modern status as a creative hub. They want to draw in as many of the 30,000 students, 4 1/2 million visitors and, of course, those all important locals as possible and are achieving this by putting on a variety of events pitched at all levels! They’ve also been very successful at booking celebrities, and proper ones at that! In their own words ‘not just Gok Wan in a shopping centre’ and their catwalks aim to be as good as, if not better, than those you would expect to see in London. Bath in Fashion is serious business y’all.

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After a very enjoyable, but slightly exhausting, fashion scavenger hunt around Bath (you can see the results of this over on Instagram), we met back at the Fashion Museum for a gander around their wonderful exhibitions. It was especially great fun trying on some of the big frocks! I think Lily should definitely start wearing bonnets more often!

She and Hem| Bath in Fashion

The museum currently plays host to the Dress of The Year exhibition, with the 2013 winner above chosen by Susanna Lau from Style Bubble. She chose a wonderful sugar pink silk organza dress by Christopher Kane. Nice work, Bubble.

She and Hem| Bath in Fashion She and Hem| Bath in Fashion She and Hem| Bath in Fashion

It was a really tip top day and a great chance to see friendly faces, old and new! I am now feeling very tempted by the Meadham Kirchhoff talk! Any takers?

I should also add that if you happen to be in Bath on April 30th, take a stroll down Bath Street where the beautiful columns will have been yarn bombed by 2000 roses!

Jx

The Friendship is Magic Blogger Tag

Hello hello! We have something a little different for you today. Those stylish Style Rawr girls kindly tagged us in their very own The Friendship is Magic blogger tag, which they started to celebrate four fabulous years of blogging together. Congratulations ladies! So, without further ado… this is us!

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How and where did you meet?

We met in a muddy field in Oxford at the 2007 Truck Music Festival, so called because the main stage was the back of a truck. Yes, we’ve always been this sophisticated.

First impressions of each other?

J: I had an instant girl crush. She had great clothes, great hair, great taste in music and one fabulous Essex accent. She still has all of those things, obviously. Apart from the accent which she lost slightly after moving to Bristol. Where I live! Convenient.

V: Aside from being totally gorgeous and super hip, a stand out thing I remember about hanging with old pyjama features was that (unlike a lot of other totally gorgeous super hip girls) she was a fantastic listener and seemed genuinely interested in what I had to say. This is extremely commendable as I spent, and continue to spend, a lot of time talking about Tom from McFly.

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What’s your favourite memory together?

J: My favourite memory of Victoria is, without a doubt, the time she ran smack into a glass door in Majorca. She got so overexcited whilst playing pin the tail on the donkey (this is true) that she wanted to grab the camera and forgot the door existed. I was blind folded at the time and the sound of her hitting that door will stay with me forever.

V: My absolute favourite memories of spending time with Jo are not just She and Hem related, but often revolve around the times we spend with our lovely bunch of chums. In terms of blogging together, our first ‘big’ blogging event that we attended for Osiris will always be really special and memorable because although we didn’t know what to expect, it turned out to be a tip top time!

Favourite inside joke?

We have a lot! The one that makes us giggle without fail is ‘after dinner fart tart’ which came about as the result of a lengthy discussion about Yankee Candle scents.

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What are your favourite pieces from each other’s wardrobes?

J: I love Victoria’s Cath Kidston train print dress! She looks so amazing in it and the print is ridiculously great. She also has endless amounts of pretty coats that I am forever coveting.

V: Jo’s wardrobe is full of such stuff that dreams are made of. I would happily take my Poptarts and go live in there. If I had to choose, it would be her beautiful vintage wedding dress. She could not have looked any lovelier on her wedding day. I tried to say this to her mum at one point during the ceremony, but I was left quite speechless with all the emotions!

Who do you both crush on (man crushes count too!)?

We have a Pinterest board dedicated to this!

If you could set up a business together, what would it be?

Thanks to Totnes, we are very into cat cafes and we would probably set one up given half the chance. Perhaps we could have ours on a boat in Bristol harbour and offer cream tea cat cruises. With gin.

What would your band name be, and what would your debut album be called?

I think She and Him might sue us if we started a band called She and Hem. We would probably be called Live by the Snooze, Die by the Snooze and our album would be called Jo’s Gangrenous Appendix. There you go, two more in-jokes for your confused amusement.

Great blogging accomplishment?

We’ve been writing She and Hem for almost a year now and we do feel incredibly proud by what we have achieved. We have made some fantastic new friends and have got to work with lots of brands that we love! Stand out moments would be attending London Fashion Week with Orla Kiely, hobnobbing at Vogue Festival with Boden and getting to represent Bristol with Cath Kidston. At times it has been very surreal! You could make our year even more special by nominating us for a Company Style Blogger Award in the Best Duo category! 

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Best thing about blogging as a duo/team?

In the words of style icons PJ and Duncan “There is always someone there to pull your skirt out of your knickers”.

We would like to tag the gorgeous sisters from Saints on a Plane to do this tag next.

J&V

Vogue Festival 2014: Valentino

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During the fabulous Vogue Festival, we were lucky enough to be invited to listen to super successful Italian fashion designer (and keen gardener – watch out Alan Titchmarsh!) Valentino Garavani speak to British Vogue editor Alexandra Schulman about his life, loves and pugs. You may have heard of him as he’s kind of a big deal. He’s even got a day named after him!

Valentino charmed us from the start with an apology for his strong Italian accent and an earnest fondness for London. “To me, London is the capital of the world. I live here for four to five months of the year. London men are very well dressed, whereas in Italy, the men dress all in black. Like a cockroach!”, he joked, betraying a certain distaste for our insect friends. It seems Valentino is more of a pug guy, owning an impressive five, two of which travel with him everywhere he goes. He didn’t choose the pug life, the pug life chose him.

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He started to draw, aged 14, in his school workbook, and by the time he was 17 he had a collection of over 50 drawings. After much haggling and cajoling, the precocious Valentino convinced his parents to send him to Paris to perfect his craft. He explained how he wished to “learn how to make everybody beautiful by using little tricks of the trade…like raising bosoms!”. His admiration for the the female form was particularly evident, as was his support for the notion that a woman should be free to be as elegant as she can. As he says, “A dress should live on a woman’s body, not just sit on it”. Hopefully he hasn’t seen any of our early blog photographs!

During a Q&A session he was asked how he feels about famous people wearing his designs. Referencing his love of the cinema, he told the crowd that he found it “very satisfying to see celebrities such as Drew Barrymore wearing Valentino for big events like the Oscars”. Fancy loaning us a few pieces Val?

The captivating conversation came to a close with some simple, yet heartening and inspiring advice from the man himself – “Believe in what you are, try to be optimistic and to be happy”. If it’s good enough for him, it’s good enough for us.

V&J

Double Thumbs Dresses #34

Hello hello! It’s time for another roundup of the dresses we have deemed worthy of the highly coveted Double Thumbs seal of approval. This week even includes two of your recommended seven a day. You are very welcome.

Lemon Print Dress £18 from Tu Clothing At Sainsbury's
Lemon Print Dress £18 from Tu Clothing at Sainsbury’s

Fruity frock number one comes courtesy of TU at Sainsbury’s! I spotted this one over on A Million Dresses blog and quickly fell for its vintage charm and that pricetag. Hello! I then proceeded to have a slight dress meltdown when I discovered that you can no longer order TU items online (it’s 2014 Sainsbury’s. I expect to at least be able to click + collect) but I needn’t have worried as my lovely Mum (Hi Mum) came to my rescue and picked one up for me. Apparently they are running quite low on certain sizes so GO NOW. RIGHT NOW.

Ditta Pineapple Dress £49 by Louche from Joy
Ditta Pineapple Dress £49 by Louche from Joy

But, hey, if you can’t be bothered to go to Sainsbury’s or you simply don’t fancy being a right lemon, Louche are here with some delightful pineapples. Available from wonder store, Joy, this lovely dress is just begging to be worn in the sunshine.  Perhaps whilst holding an outlandish cocktail.

Dress in Alice in Wonderland Print £205 by Paul & Joe Sister Exclusive to ASOS
Dress in Alice in Wonderland Print £205 by Paul & Joe Sister Exclusive to ASOS

I can’t afford this Alice in Wonderland (!!!) print Paul & Joe Sister dress but that hasn’t stopped me from adding it to my ASOS saved list in some ridiculous hope that one day it might be 75% off and I’ll have a discount code. A girl can dream.

Florida Bloom Mesh Dress £150 from French Connection
Florida Bloom Mesh Dress £150 from French Connection

The new French Connection collection is something to behold but I instantly fell for this super floaty fit and flare dress. What a hot mesh.

Daisy Jacquard Dress £70 from Oasis
Daisy Jacquard Dress £70 from Oasis

You might have already spotted this lovely daisy dress from Oasis on Taylor Swift as she was pictured wearing it whilst swanning around New York. It must have been high fives and back slaps ahoy at Oasis HQ this week, eh? Anyhoo, Old Swifto went for the navy version but I am personally rather partial to this peachy colour.

*Correction* Taylor was actually wearing this Oasis dress. They are pretty similar though.

Ribbon Detailed Flared Dress £65.00 from Warehouse
Ribbon Detailed Flared Dress £65 from Warehouse

I’ve got a lot of love for this ribbon detailed dress from Warehouse. it sort of reminds me of a May-pole! That’s a good thing. The colours are lovely too.

Macie Dress £85 from Coast
Macie Dress £85 from Coast

There are some lovely dresses on the Coast website at the moment but I was drawn to the beautiful scenic print featured on this Macie dress. I love those almost spooky looking trees! It’s all rather enchanting.

Bow Back Denim Smock Dress £42 from ASOS
Bow Back Denim Smock Dress £42 from ASOS

And we finish on this fantastic denim bow back dress from ASOS. It looks like it might give you some serious underwear dilemmas but crikey, look at it. It’s got a massive bow on the back! Yes please.

Jx

PS If you love reading Double Thumbs Dresses then do please consider nominating us for the Company Style Blogger Awards 2014 in the Best Duo category. Imagine how big my double thumbs will be if we get shortlisted. PRETTY BIG is the answer.

Weekend Doll

She and Hem| Weekend DollWay back in She and Hem history, Double Thumbs Dresses #14 to be precise, we featured a wonderful company called Weekend Doll! We quickly fell in love with their vintage inspired pieces, especially their modern take on 40s tea dresses and twirly 50s frocks! Heaven! We were therefore delighted when they got in touch to see if we would like to choose a dress each to feature. It’s a hard life sometimes.

She and Hem| Weekend DollShe and Hem| Weekend Doll

J: I loved this blue chiffon Peter Pan Posey* collar dress from the moment I set eyes on it. It’s exactly what I look for in a dress in that it looks like the grown up version of something I would have worn when I was 7. Perfect. I’ve already worn it a few times and each time it has received numerous compliments – and not just from girls! I say! I’ve taken to wearing it with black accessories in my latest bid to look as much like an angry Alice in Wonderland as possible but I like teaming it with white tights and pastels too. The belt is from ASOS (the dress does comes with a red tie belt), the spot tights are from Oliver Bonas and my stomping boots are H! by Henry Holland. My heart sunglasses are an Amazon bargain.

She and Hem| Weekend Doll

She and Hem| Weekend Doll

V: I chose the delightful coral Maisy* dress. With it’s minty piping and beautiful big bow, it really stood out on Weekend Doll’s website. I had planned on wearing this as a day dress during the summer, but after slipping on some nude heels to take the photographs, the dress felt far too special! I’m now going to save it for a friends upcoming wedding. I kept my accessories really simple, wearing two pairs of sunglasses from Primark, as this pretty dress is definitely the star of the show!

She and Hem| Weekend DollShe and Hem| Weekend Doll

She and Hem| Weekend DollShe and Hem| Weekend Doll

Thanks Weekend Doll!

J&V