Merry Boxing Day one and all! Did you all have a suitably brilliant Christmas? Today is probably the best day of the whole year as absolutely nobody minds if you spend 24 hours in your pyjamas, eating chocolate and watching children’s films. Three cheers to that! It’s also a good excuse to start spending that Christmas money as pretty much everyone now has a January sale on! Here’s our current most wanted list. We can’t guarantee that everything here will still be in stock so NO TEARS PLEASE, it’s Christmas.
The ASOS sale is so big that I have barely scratched the surface! My eyes can’t cope.
A little while ago we were very kindly asked if we would like to choose a summer outfit each from New Look’s summer range and, having both decided recently that we would like to step out of our usual comfort zone of twirly dresses, this seemed like the perfect opportunity for us to embrace some shorts! So last week, in between stuffing ourselves silly with breakfast at the Anthropologie Bath launch and heading up to Manchester, we found ourselves strolling around in our very best summer attire. As the sun had even made an appearance for the occasion, I decided to take V to one of my favourite teenage haunts, the picture perfect Henrietta Park for some photos!
When choosing our outfits, Victoria headed straight for New Look’s handy co-ords section (I wish more online shops had cottoned on to this) and selected her gorgeous red floral top and shorts set. It looked absolutely stunning on and she accessorised it perfectly with her Primark shell bag, sparkly George sunglasses* and jazzy cobalt blue Office sandals from House of Fraser*. She looked so bright and cheery in the vibrant colours and we both agree that the shorts especially are going to making many an appearance…if the sun holds up his end of the deal too.
I am always instantly drawn to anything white and crochet so these shorts went straight into my basket. If I was at a festival or on holiday I would be happy to rock them without tights but I don’t think Bath is quite ready for my jelly – they really are short! I do like them with tights though and my George ones are even ‘heat controlled’ so I didn’t get too hot! It took me a while to figure out what to team with them and ended up plumping for this gingham shirt top, which I now LOVE. It has such a cute tie detail at the bottom and I know I am going to be wearing it all summer long. I accessoried with Topshop brogues, a white Zatchel, a Pull & Bear cardigan and my fail safe Amazon heart sunglasses.
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.
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! We 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.
We 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!
Morning! We’ve finally hit day two of our time at London Fashion Week. It seems crazy that this was over a week ago now! How time has flown. As you can see, the weather had improved somewhat for our second day of fashion fun, even allowing for some outside photo ops!
We had another bright and early start in order to attend the Orla Kiely showcase at Central Saint Martins. We were so incredibly excited to attend the show and it completely lived up to our expectations. We’ll be blogging about the showcase later this week but, in the meantime, how cute are the personalised coffee cups they were handing out?
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. Need a refresher? You can read about Day 1 here Day 2 here Days 3/4/5 here and Day 6 here! So sit back and grab a cup of coffee, She and Hem is going Stateside.
After getting back from Redmond on Sunday, we decided to use a couple more of our City Pass vouchers and visit two of the museums that are based at the Seattle Centre. First up was the Pacific Science Center, which is (you guessed it) a Science museum! It’s a super interactive (aka fun) museum, with a beautiful outside space filled with fountains and water-based Science action! A lot of the exhibits are designed to teach children but we weren’t the only adults to be found playing (and learning!) around the museum. There is yet more fun to be found inside with a dinosaur exhibit, Imax theater and a laser dome, just to name a few!
Rather bizarrely, Victoria and I both managed to sit on giant novelty chairs on Sunday, despite being on opposite sides of the world. We often joke about the weird similarities in our lives but I think this one takes the biscuit!
My personal favourite part of the museum was the Tropical Butterfly House! It was so wonderful to be able to stand and watch so many different species of butterfly! It was a beautiful experience and excellent fun when they decided to land on you! I could have stayed in there all day but at a cool 80 degrees, it wasn’t to be.
Next on the itinerary was the EMP Museum, housed in the shy and retiring building you see above, designed by Frank O Gehry.
It’s a museum for music, sci-fi and popular culture. As you can imagine, it’s pretty darn cool and I had been champing at the bit to visit!
We had a great time exploring the Nirvana and Jimmy Hendrix exhibits. As a Nirvana fan, James was very impressed with the memorabilia on show. We then moved onto the exhibits for Sci Fi, Horror and Fantasy. There was a LOT of cool stuff to see, including The axe from the Shining, original costumes from Harry Potter and The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, as well as J.R.R Tolkein’s original hand-edited manuscript pages for The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings! It’s fair to say I was *quite* happy here.
My favorite exhibit was dedicated to ‘Women who Rock’ and featured a huge amount of artifacts, costumes and even Lady Gaga’s piano in order to pay homage to the women who have ‘propelled rock and roll into uncharted territories’. There were so many beautiful costumes on display from such greats as The Supremes, Tina Turner, Madonna and OMG TAYLOR SWIFT. It was so strange to see outfits worn by Britney Spears and Shakira compared to those worn by artists like Aretha Franklin and Ruth Brown. I know whose wardrobe I would rather own!
Last weekend I had the absolute pleasure of attending my beautiful friend Anna’s hen do! I had been excited about this day for months as Anna is a very creative lady and I knew her hen would be something special – and I was not wrong!
It was a bright and early start as we met at Premier Apartments in Bristol city centre. Anna’s ‘angels’ had been busy working their magic as when I arrived at 9am the place was fully decked out with bunting, vintage china, lovely throws and lots of yummy food! It was wonderful to walk in to! After the Bucks Fizz had been duly handed out, it was down to business for the real reason we had all got up so bright and early! Hair!
Anna had booked three girls from the Pop Up Parlour to give our hair a vintage makeover! There was a lot of excitement (and a few nervous giggles) as we worked our way through the look-book the girls had provided. I was finding it very difficult to decide as I have a lot of hair but I am in no way adventurous with it. I don’t tend to wear my hair up, as I don’t think it suits me, but it seemed such a waste to not to go for it! Plus, it was so outrageously warm I was quite keen on the idea of having the barnet up and out of the way!
My vintage look was created by Faye, who as luck would have it, I actually already knew! She went to school with my BFF Ellie and I’ve been lucky enough to have her do my makeup on more than one occasion. This was the first time she had done my hair but she’s incredibly talented and did an absolutely smashing job! I love that she decided to leave a ponytail at the back so that I still had some of the length! I felt like a real vintage princess.
After the hair was completed, it was time for a mosey into town for a glass of bubbly at the Riverstation. My seat gave me the perfect vantage point to take some hair photos! Aren’t they brilliant? The Pop Up Parlour did such an amazing job choosing different styles that would suit everyone.
We had been asked in our invitations to wear vintage inspired dresses and, as you can see, we certainly all looked the part! I wore a lovely yellow Lady V London dress which I had bought especially. I had been eyeing it up for some time and this was just the occasion it warranted! I wore it with my, now obligatory, white heart sunglasses, my red Zatchel and my new horse and carriage necklace from Tatty Devine. The lovely orange flower you can see in my hair was provided by the Pop Up Parlour.
After a few token photos with Gromit, it was time to board a boat to Beese’s Tea Gardens! The cruise was absolutely excellent, especially due to the soundtrack of Backstreet Boys and ‘N sync! It may not have fitted the vintage theme but you really haven’t lived until you’ve dressed up in your vintage finery and sung along to Dirty Pop on a river cruise.
Whilst on the boat we were each given a lovely pearl necklace to wear to the tea party that awaited us. Anna’s very talented sister had made them all using necklaces she had picked up from car boot sales and charity shops and then attached pretty ribbons to them. I love mine and will definitely be wearing it again!
Once at Beese’s we were absolutely spoiled with a humongous spread of sandwiches and cream tea. The size of the bowl of cream drew gasps of astonishment when it was brought out! I think we made a lot of the other customers rather jealous with our lovely little bunting filled corner, our veritable feast and, of course, our outrageously glamorous appearance.
It was then time for the traditional party games to begin! Anna had the joy of being presented with a ‘vintage tea party’ lucky dip, which each hen had contributed to. Over the course of the day she unearthed treats such as a teapot, milk jugs, a cake stand and beautiful embroidered napkins! There was also an excellent game of Mr & Mrs, in which Anna proved herself to be infuriatingly knowledgeable about her husband to be, and a game of Kiss the Frog! (think Pin the Tail on the Donkey, only with less donkey and more kissing).
As it was such a beautiful day, we ended up staying at Beese’s well into the evening. It’s an absolutely beautiful place, located right next to the river Avon and surrounded by a wooded bank. Founded in 1846, it’s lauded as Bristol’s best kept secret and despite only being about a 15 minute drive away, it certainly feels a million miles away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre.
It was a truly phenomenal hen do and I feel absolutely honoured to have been a part of it! It can sometimes be a little daunting spending a day with people you don’t know but Anna’s friends were all so friendly and welcoming. We all had a great time and I can’t wait to see them all again at the wedding in a few weeks time! I will no doubt be blogging about that too, as trust me when I say it’s going to be stunning!
A big thank you to ‘angel’ Joey Beard who, you may have noticed, has kindly let me use a lot of her photos for the blog post. She’s a very creative lady too! You can check out her website here and I also highly recommend you watch the winning film from The Encounters Festival 2012 0117 Hour Film Challenge, “Wind”, with which both Anna and Joey were involved. It’s brilliant!
If you are anything like me then you’ll like to have different bags for different occasions depending on what you need to take along with you. For instance, I’m not going to take my Zatchel or rucksack (seen here and here) for a meal out, but they would be perfect for a day trip or a night away from home.
There are some fantastic bags around at the moment, of all shapes and sizes, and lots of them just so happen to be in the sale! Such as this cute Yumi satchel below, which is half price on the House of Fraser website.
Another sale item, also half price, is this super cute box clutch bag from Oasis. It comes in several colours, but my favourite is the green and silver beauty. It is really small, so you wouldn’t be able to fit any emergency chocolate in there, but there will be room for your purse, phone and a cheeky picture of Ryan Gosling.
If you are looking for something slightly bigger than the box clutch, maybe to use as a small day bag, I would go for this fun owl satchel. It’s a real hoot! It’s novelty without being too childish and has the all important across body strap. It’s not in the sale, but if you are a student Accessorize are offering 10% student discount for a limited time only. You can enter your details for a voucher code here.
Bigger still in the bag department is this foxy little number from Accessorize, who’s looking for a new home. If I hadn’t recently bought a rucksack I would snap this up, especially as it comes in my favourite accessory colour, tan, so it goes with anything and everything. It is really roomy, has lots of pockets and it quite possibly the loveliest looking rucksack I’ve ever seen.
If it is a rucksack you are after, but like me you have spent all of your pennies on ice cream, here are a couple from Peacocks which are slightly cheaper. I am very pleasantly surprised by the range of bags that Peacocks has to offer at the moment, especially the rucksacks which come in several lovely patterns and colours. My mum used to drag me to Peacocks, but now I’m excited to pay a visit this weekend to see what I can find.
Last week I stumbled upon the amazing, eco-friendly Ceridwen Hazelchild Design. Designing from a little studio in the heart of the Cotswolds, Ceridwen’s designs are distinctive, unique and thoroughly charming. There are 53 items for sale in her Etsy shop, which I wholeheartededly recommend checking out, especially as it is so reasonably priced. I really cannot choose my favourite bag, as everytime I look I change my mind as they are all so fantastic! Here are my current top 3 picks.
After a hard week of work there isn’t much that will drag either of us out of bed on a Sunday morning, but last weekend was an exception as we were lucky enough to attend the Crafty Bloggers Meet. It was hosted by the friendly, helpful AND super stylish Sammy from The Cookie Button and Paige from Paige Joanna. The girls had obviously been working very hard and provided a fantastic selection of crafty goodies for us to use. We were particularly fond of the teeny bonnets and the vintage buttons, which we used to make fabulous hair clips. It was our first meet up with other bloggers, and although neither of us have ever excelled at craft in the past, we gave it a good go and were pleasantly surprised with our handywork. So much so, we skipped all the way home wearing our new floral headbands!
The meet up was held at The Birdcage, a delightful venue in the centre of Bristol. The atmosphere is inviting, the music is great and it manages to perfectly combine retro shopping, craft beer and delicious tea and cake all under one chic roof. We will certainly be visiting again.
It was a real treat to get to meet so many other friendly bloggers! We were lucky enough to be sat crafting with another new blogger, the delightful Pandora, as well as Gina, who runs the very successful South West Bloggers Network. This was the perfect dynamic for us, as both were lovely to chat to and it made us both comfortable with our newness to the scene and also completely inspired. We all had a great time getting covered in glue and admiring each others creations. Paige and Sammy were also wonderful at coming around and spurring us on.
We were definitely both feeling the pressure to pick out good outfits for the day, which was just as well as we were certainty in very beautiful and stylish company.
Jo: I wore a Primark dress which, despite owning for less than a week, has already become my most complimented piece of clothing of all time. I’ve had more than one person asking if it’s vintage which only adds to the joy of declaring where it’s really from. A woman actually gasped when I told her, gasped! It really is my dream dress! It’s bright yellow with polka dots, it has a lovely full skirt and a beautiful collar detail. It goes to show that when Primark get it right they can produce some of the most wonderful (and cheap at £22!) items. I don’t get to go in store very often so I am naturally excited about their newly announced venture with ASOS. My bank balance, less so. I wore it with white hounds-tooth tights from Accessorize, my neverseenwithout Topshop shoes and my Zatchel.
Victoria: My dress was a little purple and black deco colourblock number from Dorothy Perkins. I think we both find DorothyPerkins can be a little hit or miss sometimes, but I was a big fan of their deco collection and found it tough to choose between the purple and their gorgeous turquoise dress. Unfortunately, both dresses are now out of stock online but you could always try your luck instore. I kept my outfit simple with black tights from M&S, my new Clarks brogues and my faithful light brown Zatchel.
See, we really did skip home! This might possibly have had something do with our very first goody bags which we had earlier gratefully received alongside a complimentary cup of tea and slice of delicious cake! We had been patiently waiting until we got home to dig in!
OH MY! Fantastic! Bravo! It was filled with lovely illustrations, jewellery, perfume, cute hair bows and scrunchies, and even a tea towel! We can’t wait for the next Crafty Meet. Thanks again Paige and Sammy!
My heart is all of a flutter for the many bird prints that are currently taking over the high street. Here are some of my current favourites!
First up is the zesty little flamingo number from Sugarhill Boutique. It will be fabulous fun to wear in the summer months (if and when they arrive) and would also be perfect for the current climate when teamed with tights and a denim jacket. The back also has a really unusual criss cross detailing which is an added bonus.
Sticking with flamingos, next we have this incredible Zatchel, which is an Oliver Bonas exclusive. I consider £120 a lot of money to be spending on a bag but I have heard such great things about Zatchel that I am definitely tempted. I can just imagine the looks of envy I would receive on parading around town with this bag. FlamingWOAH, ammiright?
Orla Kiely can do no wrong in my eyes and her collection for People Tree is no exception. I have spent many hours of drooling over her website so it’s a nice change to be drooling over something which isn’t completely out of my budget. This love bird print skirt is top of my wish list.
Back to Oliver Bonas and this Bird Song dress by their in house brand Poem. This dress looks so easy to wear! You could just throw it on and go. A perfect weekend dress. I really love the little bow belt too. Good work, Bonas.
SHORTS! TOUCAN PRINT SHORTS! WITH A BOW! I got very excited when I saw these on the Yumi site and then I tried to imagine how the devil I would get away with wearing them. I’m not sure I can get away with them but I might have to go in and try them on – just to be sure.
I have really got to stop buying tights but it’s so difficult when presented with cuties like these! I find Topshop tights to be some of the best quality on the high street and these pretty bird print tights are like nothing I own.
Here we have my perfect birdy work dress from Monsoon. It looks so lovely and light to wear! It’s a good length, it has sleeves (!), a tie waist and cute little buttons too.
Back to the fun stuff now and look at this puffin print skirt from StyleVintage Me. It’s just all kinds of adorable and makes me want to go on holiday right now.
I have always been a bit useless about wearing watches, either forgetting to put them on in the morning or losing them, but since receiving an Olivia Burton watch for Christmas this is no more! I actually understand what it is to feel naked without a watch! This bird print scarf watch looks perfect for summer and I really enjoy the idea of being able to tie my strap in a bow.