Friday, 28 October 2011

Paloma Faith for La Senza

At the recent St David's South Wales Blogger Event, the lovely Emma from La Senza HQ talked us through some of La Senza's latest ranges. Buying underwear is one of my weaknesses, and I would quite happily drop a small fortune on Damaris and Agent Provocateur if funds allowed!  However, in an attempt to be more budget-conscious, I was looking forward to seeing what La Senza had to offer.

The range that jumped out at me straight away was the Paloma Faith range which she has designed to raise funds for Breast Cancer Care. Paloma has designed three pieces for her collection: a playsuit; a halterneck bra, and French knicker. The collection has a definite vintage glamour look, which I guess isn't really surprising given Paloma's style, and the fact that she used to work in Agent Provocateur. The collection is available in two colours: black and emerald. Although most of my underwear tends to be black, I was drawn to the emerald straight away, and couldn't wait to pop into their store in St David's Cardiff. The cut of the items is really flattering and they feel lovely to wear. I was also impressed with some of the other ranges instore, and the design of the store itself, which had a more sophisticated and glamorous look than the old style store.

The range is only available during October (Breast Cancer Awareness Month), so you've only got a few days left to grab these! It can be bought online and instore. The playsuit retails for £30 (£3 donation to Breast Cancer Care), the bra for £30 (£3 donation to Breast Cancer Care) and the French knicker for £16 (£1 donation to Breast Cancer Care).

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Versace for H & M

H & M have been collaborating with a range of designers for the last few years, from Stella McCartney to Lanvin. The hype around them seems to build with every new designer collaboration. The latest designer to work with H & M is none other than Versace.

Donatella Versace has described the collection as "the essence of Versace". The collaboration has drawn on archive pieces and prints and contains all of the Versace hallmarks, e.g. the Greek key and gold metal detailing. In addition to the womenswear, Versace have also designed ranges of footwear, accessories, menswear and homeware. Here are some of my favourite pieces from the collection, which will be released on 17th November online and in 300 stores:

£79.99 - A simple shape with classic Versace metal and cut-out detailing.
£39.99 - I really like the simple shape and think that this would be great for wearing
to work.
£69.99 - I think that this would look great with a simple top to contrast with the detailed pattern.

£79.99 - I think that this corseted bustier dress is classic Versace.

£79.99 - I love this colour.
£39.99 - I think that this would be a real statement piece when paired with a simple top.

£24.99 - This scarf would be perfect for adding a splash of Versace colour and pattern to a simple outfit.

So what are your thoughts on this collaboration? Who else would you like to see H & M collaborate with in the future?

Monday, 24 October 2011

H & M Trend Silver Cardigan

Last week I finally tracked down this beautiful piece from H & M. I first saw it on the 'Dress Me Perfect' blog, written by Dawn. As soon as I saw the cardigan I tweeted Dawn to ask her if it was this season. Once I found out that it was, I was determined to get my hands on it. It wasn't stocked in the one nearest to my office, so I had to wait for a week until I had a bit more time. I was really pleased when I found it, as there were only three left instore, and there was a lady waiting to pick up one of them when I got to the rail! After nearly missing out on my TopShop trench coat, I made sure that I grabbed this as soon as I could.

I love this cardigan. Although it is a cosy knit on the inside, the painted metallic outer makes it edgier. As it is quite chunky, it is perfect as a relaxed coat, but when worn with a black belt it can have a sharper silhouette. It is perfect for adding a more glamorous and vintage-look edge to an outfit when thrown over a pair of skinny jeans and a tee. Since I bought this, I have started to see it on a number of blogs, so it looks like I'm not the only one who loves this.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Mini Blog Sale: Nail Polishes (Nails Inc; Essie; No 7; Leighton Denny; Bourjois; Ciate)

I am having a bit of a clearout to make way for some new Autumn Winter purchases, so I have decided to have a mini blog sale. Most of the items are unused. Where I have used the product at all I have stated clearly how much has been used.

Here is the boring bit, before we get to the beauty products:

  1. Please leave your comment below letting me know which item you are interested in, together with your email address. I will then send you an email regarding payment (Paypal only). Please note that I would like you to select the gift option when paying via Paypal in order that no fees are applied.
  2. All of the items are as shown. If you have a particular question about an item, please feel free to ask.
  3. I will not accept returns so please make sure you check swatches online etc. before buying.
  4. Standard postage for the UK will be £1.50 for one item. If you buy more than one item it will only be an additional 50p per extra item.
Essie - Great Expectations - Unused - £2.50

No 7 - 90s Pink Slip - Used once - £2.00

Leighton Denny Double Up Duo - Yellow Brick Road - Used x3 - £3.50

Nails Inc - Elle/North Row - Unused - £2.00

Bourjois So Laque Ultra Shine - Magenta Show - Unused - £2.50

Ciate - Wait Until Dark - Used Once - £2.00

Essie - No Boundaries - Used Once - £2.00

Nails Inc - Caramel - Never Used - £2.50

Saturday, 22 October 2011

Benefit: Confessions of a Concealaholic Kit for £18.50 - save £10 are continuing their series of Benefit beauty bargains this week, with an offer on Benefit's 'Confessions of a Concealaholic' kit. The kit contains everything you could need to prime, conceal and brighten:

"that gal" brightening face primer
boi-ing (01, 02) industrial strength concealer in 2 shades for custom concealing
erase paste (no. 2 medium) brightening camouflage for eyes and face
lemon aid colour correcting eyelid primer
eye bright instant eye brightener
concealer brushes
step-by-step lesson

The starting price on the kit is £28.50 but if enough people get in on the co-buy, the price could fall to £18.50. I have been really impressed with my purchases from - easy payment and fast delivery (often free depending on the particular deal). If you are trying to be good in the run up to Christmas and not spend as much on beauty products for yourself, then you might want to grab one of these as a present for someone. But you better get in there quickly, as all of the beauty offers this week have sold out within a few hours.

Happy Birthday to 2 (St David's 2 that is!) * Penblwydd Hapus

Last week I blogged about attending the South Wales Blogger Meetup, which was organised by St. David's Cardiff. Today, the centre is celebrating its second birthday.

For anyone in Cardiff who is partial to a spot of retail therapy (not me, maybe *obviously* ) the opening of the St David's 2 development was a big event, as it brought a number of big name retailers to Wales for the first time, including REISS and John Lewis. Since it opened in 2009, there have been over 75 million visits, which is a lot of shopping. And it's not just shopping of the window variety, as shoppers have been spending over £1m a day (not all me, honest!). There are now more than 120 stores (a mix of high-street and designer) in the centre. Over the past year alone there have been 33 store openings, including Cath Kidston and Jo Malone. Over the next week or so I will be posting about some of my favourite brands that featured at the Bloggers Meetup. If you are from Cardiff, I would love to know which are your favourite stores in the development. Or are there any particular brands that you would like to see in the Centre? I know that I've got my own wish-list, including 'Space NK' and 'The Kooples' *crosses fingers*.

When I grow up I want to be a Kooples girl

So many beauty products, so little time!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Prada Candy

Prada fragrances have always been on my 'to-try list' but I never seemed to get around to trying them. Their previous fragrances such as Infusion d'Iris and L’Eau Ambrée always seemed quite classic and restrained judging by their advertising campaigns. Their latest launch definitely doesn't follow this trend, and the campaign has a hedonistic and impulsive feel. Miuccia Prada has described this as "an excessive fragrance with too much of everything." The packaging immediately jumps out at you with its combination of pink, caramel and gold. The box features a retro cartoon illustration. As part of the launch, the 'face' of the fragrance, French actress Léa Seydoux, filmed this commercial, which can definitely not be described as restrained!

The name of this fragrance might suggest that this is a sickly sweet scent. But I didn't find that at all. There are only 3 notes in the fragrance: musk; vanilla-scented benzoin and caramel. This scent is a lovely combination of sweetness and warmth. I couldn't stop smelling this scent when I wore it.

I loved the unusal packaging of this product, with its combination of different textures with the glass and leather, and it would look really striking on my dressing table.

I was given a sample size of this, but I will definitely be purchasing this very soon. It is available in 30ml, 50ml and 80ml sizes, with prices ranging from £40 to £71.00.

Fine Print: I was sent a sample size of this by

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Benefit 'They're Real' Mascara for £11.00 - £7.50 saving on the RRP

Another great offer from . I have been wanting to try Benefit's 'They're Real' mascara since it was released in August. It has had some great reviews on a number of beauty blogs. And thanks to there's the chance to save £7.50 on the RRP and snap it up for £11.00. Their last offer (Nanoblur) sold out in two and a half hours, so I would recommend getting in there quickly to ensure you get it at a bargain price.

Nanoblur Optical Skin Cream for £11.99

UPDATE: 11:55 am - Wow! The stock of Nanoblur was all bought in two and a half hours! I guess that shows you've got to get in there quick.

Just a quick post to let you know that there's a great offer over at Today you can get Nanoblur Optical Skin Cream, which has variously been described as a "mini-tube of heaven" and "an ideal cheat to look fresh-faced", for as little as £11.99. I love the idea of You can vote for the products you want them to offer, and then the more people that opt in to a co-buy, the lower the price gets. Before now I have snapped up a Chanel lipstick and Nails Inc magnetic polish at reduced prices from their site. It makes those beauty treats a bit more affordable. So what are you waiting for? Get yourself over to! This is a one-day only offer (ends tomorrow morning at 9am) so get in while you can.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

TopShop Trench Temptation

One of my favourite recent purchases has been my new TopShop trench coat. I first saw it before I went on holiday, but didn't buy it as I thought I should save my money for my holidays. However on my return, I realised the error of my ways, as it was nowhere to be found instore and was out of stock online. Moral of the story being: If you love it, buy it there and then. I like how it mixes classic trench coat details with the leather-look detailing which is very current.

The Object of My Desire

After a protracted saga of standard email responses, unhelpful shop assistants and unanswered tweets from TopShop I eventually managed to track the coat down instore. Thanks to the lovely Alice Wignall from Elle magazine I knew to get a smaller size as she told me the sizing comes up large on this item.

Thank goodness for Twitter, as TopShop were useless at dealing with my queries. I don't see the point of a brand being on Twitter if they aren't going to communicate with their followers as part of a two-way dialogue, as opposed to just tweeting about items from their collections. They could definitely learn a thing or two from Asos and My Wardrobe who have always been really helpful on Twitter, e.g. answering queries re. orders, or just engaging in conversation, e.g. discussing one of my style-crushes, Taylor Tomasi Hill.

I would love to hear about any 'must-have' pieces that you have had to track down. Or any examples of great experiences of interacting with brands on Twitter.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

St David's South Wales Bloggers Event

Last Wednesday I was lucky enough to attend the first St David's South Wales Blogger Event. The event was part of their Autumn Winter Fashion Tour (in conjunction with the British Fashion Council) which has seen fashion shows throughout the shopping centre and 'Pamper Pods' dotted throughout the centre.

Before the main event, a number of the bloggers met up to get to know each other over a drink and a muffin in BB's in the centre. We also managed to fit in a bit of browsing and shopping in Urban Outfitters and Seren, in the Morgan Arcade.

Sarah from 'Falling Forward' and Eric The Panda accessorising

The main event took place in the management suite of the shopping centre. Hosting the event were the lovely Laura and Sarah from Golley Slater. There were also representatives from a number of the stores within the centre, from Reiss to G-Star to La Senza. They gave us an insight into their latest collections and highlighted some of their key pieces for this season.

John from Reiss explaining the influences behind this season's collection,

Emma from La Senza
We were also given a vintage-look hair demonstration by the staff from Kamigata, which is an Aveda Lifestyle Salon & Spa based in the centre.

After the presentations we were given the opportunity to browse the selection of clothes and accessories from a number of the stores in the centre, from Kurt Geiger to New Look. This was the fun part, where we could get our hands on the clothes and also get to chat to the other bloggers, including Emily from Sugar and Spice and Cami from 'Room on the Third Floor' . It was good to meet people that I'd previously only known from Twitter.

These Miu Miu-esque glittery shoes are from KG by Kurt Geiger

Clutch from Oasis

This being the party season, there were a lot of glamorous pieces on show, with plenty of sparkly and shiny pieces to see you through until the New Year. We were also treated to some Krispy Kreme doughnuts (my first ever!), which necessitated some careful handling of the clothes!

Love the cut and colour of this Reiss jacket

Love this Monsoon dress. It's definitely on my 'to-buy' list

There were some great pieces on show, including some gorgeous pieces from Reiss and Kurt Geiger. I'll be posting about the different brands in more detail over the next week or so.

A big thanks to Gemma and Chantelle who organised the event together with Golley Slater. I would also like to thank the lovely Liz from Cardiff Blogs, who kindly stepped in to take photos for me when my camera battery died. In case you're wondering, she is the one holding the Mango red dress in the picture above. If she isn't the owner of that dress by the end of the year she will not be happy!

Saturday, 8 October 2011

All That Glitters or 'How I Satisifed my Glitter Lust'

One of the shoes of the season which has featured in all of the style magazines is the Miu Miu glitter trompe d'oeil boot which gives the effect of wearing strappy shoes with some rather sparkly socks. Another variation on it was the gold and pink fan boots which didn't seem to be as widely featured. I don't know what it is about them but they just make me smile. And I know I'm not the only one, as lots of my favourite ladies on Twitter were raving about them, including A Girl, A Style and JenniferElleUK. However these are firmly out of my price range at £555, so I made do with lots of admiring glances at various blog posts and style magazines.

But try as I might I just couldn't shake the urge to get my glitter on. Which is where the Office sale stepped in. Lurking at the back of the shelf was one pair of black glitter pointed ballet pumps which kept calling me back. Now I'm not a big wearer of ballet pumps, and it's usually a case of 'the higher the heel the better' for me when it comes to shoes, but I felt like trying something different, so I picked these up.
These were originally £60, but had been reduced to £16. And thanks to Office's extra 20% off sale shoes, these only cost £12.80! I have had lots of comments on them and they do indeed make me smile when I put them on. They might not be as glamorous as the Miu Miu ones, but they have satisfied my need for a glitter fix......for now!

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Daniel Sandler Watercolour Blush in 'Pop' (Limited Edition)

It's that time of year again, when companies from Estee Lauder to Asda urge us to 'Think Pink'. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. In addition to raising awareness of the disease, the month also raises a lot of money for Breast Cancer charities, via the sale of a host of pink items.

I have only used a few Daniel Sandler products but have been really impressed with them, so I was really keen to try this, as his legendary 'Watercolour' blushes were next on my 'to try' list (which seems to be growing by the day!). Daniel has created a new limited edition shade, 'POP', especially to raise funds for Macmillan Cancer Support. Only 250 of these have been produced, and they are available exclusively at Escentual for £14.50.

I love this shade as it is a perfect perk-me-up pink which gives a beautiful flush of colour. The colour is best applied with one of Daniel's waterbrushes, which are currently on offer for £5. I already had one of these from when they were offered as a free gift with any Daniel Sandler product a few months ago. One of the things I liked about this was that the colour was buildable, so that I could get exactly the intensity I was looking for, without worrying that I would look too 'Aunt Sally'! This blush gives a really natural flush to the skin, with just the right amount of 'pop'.

1 sweep of Watercolour Blush

With a second sweep of Watercolour Blush

So if this looks like your kind of blush, get yourself over to Escentual . This shade is selling fast! There are lots of other lovely shades in the Watercolour Blush range too, and this month Escentual are donating 10% of the selling price of the Watercolour Blushes to Breast Cancer Care.

Fine Print: I was sent this product for review purposes.


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