Thursday, October 29, 2015

Zip Up And Go

My Multizip pouch has got to be my most used Mulberry item: zips give easy access to four smaller and one bigger compartments. 

I use it every day during my working week to carry pens, washi, stickers, page flags, cables, tampons, lipcream and various bits of paper. When I fly with little M, it will hold our passports, mobile phones (yes, he has an old iPhone to play on - just on flights though!), tablets, headphones and other bits and bobs. 

I could go on but will instead let you watch me load it up for various occasions!

By the way, in regards to care for the leather, I just sprayed it with Collonil before I started using it and though it's not being babied, there are no stains or scrapes on it.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Monday to Friday Dressing

I actually managed to take a pic every day last week - don't get too used to it though. ;)

Shirt: LaRedoute
Skirt: Zara
Trainers: Converse
Belt: Mulberry

Dress: Stefanel
Cardigan: Boden
Boots: Zara
Necklace: Sainsbury's

Dress, boots and necklace: Zara

Dress: Topshop
Boots: Zara
Necklace: Orelia

Sweatshirt: Zara
Jeans: Next
Trainers: Converse

Monday, October 26, 2015

Covet Monday: Topshop Mini Skirt

As much as I like wrapping up warm when it gets cold, I find myself drawn to shorter skirts as soon as the temperature drops. I just think knee-length works best with no or nude tights, whereas short skirts look better on me with black opaques. Hunting for a new mini, I suddenly found myself back at one of my old favourites: Topshop

It has been ages since I bought anything at Topshop. Partially because I've been "good" and bought less than I used to and partially because I have been opting for slightly higher priced items. My theory of "buy less but higher quality" had been working pretty well and my cost per wear ratio had definitely improved.

Anyway, picking up a shirtdress, I had stumbled upon, I found three contenders and shall pop into store this week to buy one up if it fits. :)

High-Waisted Check A-Line Skirt
I like the retro dogtooth pattern and the contrast lines breaking it up. Can see myself wearing this with a chunky knit and lace up boots. 

High-Waisted Check A-Line Skirt

Checked Twill High-Waisted Skirt
I am sure, Rachel in Friends wore a very similar one - and I used to love that one! This one I'd combine with one of my grey cropped sweatshirts and either black boots brogues. 

Checked Twill High-Waisted Skirt

Floral Boucle A-Line Skirt
A bit pretty-pretty but I'd love this with chunky lace up boots and a black lose sweathshirt.

Topshop Floral Boucle A-Line Skirt
So wish me luck. Let's hope I can still pull off a mini...

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Clever Poppy

Every now and then I come across a Mulberry bag that really surprises me. That kind of does more than what I expected. That is way more useful and prettier in real life. 

This Poppy is one of those bags. To be honest, I really just saw the colour and pounced on her without thinking much. And when I received her, fiddled with the zips and popped my essentials in, I realised how clever she really is. Not only does she hold more than you think. 

She also comes with three neat compartments and opening said zips transform her into a mini tote. Have a look for yourself!

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Back To Work

After a week on holiday, where I lived in jeans, walking boots and jumpers, I am back in the UK, where it suddenly feels pretty close to winter. Certainly first thing in the morning, when you're standing on a drafty train platform. Being back in work means, I need to think at least a bit about what I wear. So I'm straight back to my fail safe Boden. God, I'm so predictable...

Top & Skirt: Boden
Boots: Zara
Necklace: Marni for H&M

Top, Cardigan and Skirt: Boden
Boots: Zara
Necklace: Topshop

Love these socks and though I felt a bit silly, I thought they were kind of too nice to hide away? No idea where they are from though...
Jumper: Primark
Jeans & black top worn underneath jumper: H&M
Trainers: Converse

Monday, October 19, 2015

Covet Monday: Something Sweet

People who know me will be happy to testify that I am not very good in the kitchen. When I try to do anything more complicated than pancakes or boiled eggs (both of which I can actually do very nicely, indeed), it usually goes wrong. Tears have featured a number of times in the past.

So when our garden produced a bumper harvest of plums and topped it off with an incredible amount of wild blackberries, I needed some really easy ways of preserving them. A couple of phone conversations with my mum, some light online research and a trip to a jar wholesaler and I was ready to go.

So this is what I did with the first lot of plum:

Plum Jam

All I used was plums, a squirt of lemon and sugar. Ordinary sugar. Not preserving or jam sugar or any other setting agent. If you use ordinary sugar you rely on the natural pectin in your fruit to set your jam, so it will work best with fruit that contains more pectin; you might struggle with berries. And you typically need to use a fruit to sugar ratio of 50:50. 

1. Wash plums and de-stone.
2. Put fruit, lemon juice and a bit of water in a pot.
3. Bring to the boil, stir frequently.
4. Reduce heat and simmer for 40 minutes.
5. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved.
6. Turn up the heat and bring to a rapid boil.

7. After about 5 minutes, take a drop of your jam and pop it on a cooled plate. Leave for a minute and push your finger through it. If it wrinkles, it has reached setting point. If not, boil a bit longer and try again.

8. Fill into jars. [I remember my granny sterilising huge glass jars in pots and this being a big palaver. I just got some ordinary jars with screw tops, washed them well, rinsed them hot and put them in the oven upside down for about 20 minutes. I put the lids into boiling water and filled the jam in when the glasses had just come out of the oven.]

I was a bit worried that this jam would be too sickly sweet due to the 50% sugar content but the fruit had good flavour and a bit of tartness and I am happy to report that it tastes nice and fruity.

So this was the first lot of plums taken care of. We had another one to come. And all those blackberries. I am happy to report that I have since then produced blackberry syrup, blackberry jelly, plum vodka and blackberry gin. So watch this space if, like me, you need easy ways of preserving some fruit. If I can do it, anybody can!

The lovely people at Independent Fashion Bloggers have chosen my post this week for their top 20 "Links a la Mode", alongside with the others below. Do check them out!
Links à la Mode, October 29
SPONSOR: Shopbop Blank Denim, Love Sam Tops, Schutz Shoes, Zoe Chicco, Bickley + Mitchell, Sara Battaglia, Long Cardigans, Black Lace Tops, Fur Coats, Men's Splendid Mills

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Thank You!

It's less than half a year ago that I resurrected my blog. Yes, this one. Before then, it had been pretty much forgotten since the day I found out I was pregnant. That was so huge that I simply could not write anything without mentioning it - yet, I couldn't write about it until I had told my parents and friends. And once I was past that point, blogging seemed really... unimportant...

Then little M was born. Not only was I up to my elbows in nappies (it's not a figure of speech - you really are!), my heart was full of Mama hormones and my head of pretty much nothing else but how to survive on one hour of sleep each night.

My way back to my blog came via a combination of my love for Mulberry bags and finding a lovely community on Facbook, where we swapped hints and tips and after an impromptu video review of my vintage Mulberry Blenheim, I got lots of positive feedback and decided to carry on.

So I'd just like to say thank you to every single one who read my posts, watched my videos, liked my Facebook page or followed me on Instagram. Without the feedback, increase in page views and likes it would be so much less fun.

Thank you!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Go East West

You might know that one of my favourite go-to bags is my Ledbury - especially since I managed to add a long strap that allows me to carry her cross-body. She does have rather short straps though, so if you like carrying your bag on your shoulder you might struggle.
Enter the Mulberry East West Bayswater: with the same height and just a tad wider, her handles are a fair bit longer, yet she is much more little-Ledbury than  big-Bayswater sized.

So before I come to the full review just a quick comparison:

Height 28cm
Width 37cm
Depth 17cm
Handle Drop 14cm
Weight 1400g

East West Bayswater
Height 20cm
Width 33cm
Depth 17cm
Handle Drop 18cm
Weight 900g

Height 20cm
Width 27cm
Depth 14cm
Handle Drop 11cm
Weight 750g 

All based on items in picture. I know that they can vary, especially weight (depending on leather) and handle drop. 

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Uniform Dressing: The Cropped Sweatshirt

I like effortless style. Getting dressed in the morning without having to think about it too much is more of a necessity than a choice when you have a toddler to get ready as well, yet try to eek out every last minute in bed.

I usually settle on a specific way of getting dressed. For example, once winter really hits, I'll be putting on a pair of black opaque tights, knee-high black boots, a black long sleeve top and simply throw over a tunic or dress. Done!

Still in a more transitional mood, my current favourite "uniform" has got to be a slim/pencil skirt paired with a slightly cropped and looser top. I think this is great for work as the skirt makes it look formal, the silhouette works flat shoes and the more informal top gives it a bit of a relaxed edge.

I am slightly obsessed with cropped and boxy sweatshirts and tops at the moment and have ordered some and others still on my radar.

LaRedoute Cropped Sweater in Grey £29

Also available in black, I have ordered this sweater in both colours. The texture/fabric is pretty much like felt and I am not sure how it'll fare being washed but I love the shape and the fact that I can layer it. Do bear in mind that it attracts fluff and black shows every tiny fleck.

A pretty fluffy and warm knit, one for the colder days. Again, I'll be layering this with a thin long sleeve top. I love the subtle bell-shape on the sleeve and the slightly abstracted check pattern.

Boden Raglan Printed Sweatshirt £49

I adore the whimsy pattern (yes, it is Boden after all) of this top and the shape would look great with jeans as well as skirts.

H&M Embroidered Sweatshirt £29.99

A similar colour combo but with embroidery and cute volume cuffs. I love the folklore vibe. 

Do you have a go-to style or combination for getting dressed in the morning?

Monday, October 12, 2015

An Apple a Day...

I have an iPhone 6, which serves me just fine. More than fine. An iPhone 5 or even 4 probably would have been easily sufficient. I even went for the fancy gold colour on my 6. 

And what do Apple do? They bring out a new one, with barely any new function but in rose gold - and I am such a sucker for rose gold that I instantly want it. 

iPhone6s in rose gold

I need help!

Thursday, October 08, 2015

Hermes? Not Quite...

I don't think I'll ever own a Hermes Kelly. 

Don't get me wrong, I like nice handbags (no kidding) but I don't think I'll either ever like one as much as I'd have to, to spend that amount of money on a bag or have as much money, where spending a few thousand on a handbag is acceptable.

Nonetheless, I love the style, the simplicity, the elegance, the heritage and thoughts it conjures up. As if by carrying a Kelly I could just be that tiny bit more like Grace Kelly herself (yeah, right).

Anyway, lacking the funds or recklessness to buy the original Hermes Kelly, I was delighted to come across Mulberry's own version. I already found the larger one a while ago but this one was smaller and just that tad more elegant. And impractical...

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Transitional Dressing

This week was actually lovely weather-wise, which presented me with the dilemma of choosing to be freezing cold in the morning or too hot in the afternoon. I resorted to wearing a very warm coat in the morning and carrying it on the way home. :)

Shirt: LaRedoute
Skirt: Boden
Necklace: Zara
Trainers: Converse

Top: H&M
Waistcoat: Warehouse
Skirt: All Saints
Trainers: Next
Belt: Mulberry
Necklace: Topshop

Top: Warehouse
Top underneath: H&M
Skirt: Zara
Trainers: Converse

Monday, October 05, 2015

Covet Monday: A Little Bit of Grace

Woman One: She looks effortlessly chic. Moves with grace. Always seems "put together".

Woman Two: She stumbles occasionally. Realizes a button is undone. Mixes up her words.

And then there's me. I can only aspire to be like Woman Two.

I am the one that is in front of you in the queue, tries to be quick and, in the process of pulling her purse out, drops all her change, 5 tampons and a kid's toy.

I take off my bag that I wore cross body and get the strap completely tangled up in my scarf. Queue a dance of untangling and trying not to strangulate myself. I swear, my colleagues try not to laugh when I come into the office in the morning.

I regularly bang my hips into doorframes, tables and other furniture. Do I really think they're even more boyish than they already are?!

I'm a bit lazy and want to take my bra off without removing my top. Instead of saving the one minute I could have saved, I spend 5 minutes getting so hopelessly tangled up in my bra, top and vest top that I need to call Mr G for help.

I could go on. But I won't in the hope that I can retain some sort of illusion that sometimes I do look chic or put together.

I just would like a bit more of what Woman One has.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

Mulberry And Other Handbags: Top 5 Posts

Short and to the point but for those of you who joined me recently, I thought I'd share my five most viewed handbag related blog posts. If you haven't seen them yet, they may well be worth a look. 

1. With a Little Help from SAMORGA - How my slouchy Alexa got transformed by a handbag insert.
2. New Mulberry at Discounted Prices - Where to buy a new Mulberry bag safely, i.e. somewhere where you can be sure she's genuine, but for significantly less than the retail price.

3. Buying Pre-Loved Mulberry on Facebook - One of the best places to dip your toe into the Mulberry water.

4. Tea and Bags, Interview with Aqila - The first part of my interview with Aqila, where we chat about bags and ... more bags...

5. How to Sell Your Mulberry - A few hints and tips on how to price, sell and send pass on your Mulberry, or other designer bag.

Would love to hear what you think or if there's anything else you'd like me to cover!

Saturday, October 03, 2015

Another Top 20!

Thanks Independent Fashion Blogger for picking one of my posts again. I know I shouldn't crave recognition - but it does make me happy! :)

And here is the entire list:

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Mulberry in French

Why is there a difference between a Continental and a French purse? Isn't France on the continent? And why might the French want to distance themselves from the rest of the continent?

Anyway, after having been in my Prada Continental Purse for years, I really wanted to go to something more compact, especially since I am now usually carrying around my Filofax as well.

I thought I'd just give you a quick overview of how my Mulberry French Purse in Oak has fared and what I managed to squeeze in!

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