Currently Coveting #28: Patterns for Spring

My blog posting has been very sporadic to say the least since the start of this year due to both a lack of time and a lack of inspiration. January and February are not my favourite months and I’ve had no urge to do anything other than curl up on the sofa in front of the TV once the kids are in bed. But spring is finally in the air and with the warmer weather and lighter evenings comes a renewed sense of energy and a desire to start blogging a bit more again.

Last weekend I also did a mini clear out of my wardrobe to make sure it is spruced up for spring. Recently I have been really inspired by bloggers who embrace the concept of a capsule wardrobe and a more minimal lifestyle and while I am not wholly there yet I have slowly been ridding my closet of things I no longer wear.I’m happy with most of what is in there now but a couple of new pieces for spring wouldn’t go amiss. Last spring was all about stripes but this season I’m drawn to bolder prints on blouses and shirts that can be paired with my trusty jeans (current favourites: Topshop Leigh jeans in black or distressed grey) or cropped trousers. Add a pair of ballerinas or Converse and I’m good to go.

Patterns for Spring

{Any of these pretty tops from Anthropologie would fit the bill but if I had to choose one I’d probably pick the short sleeved top in the middle of the top row.}

For a slightly subtler take on the patterned trend I also love these two tops from H&M:

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What’s your must have item of clothing this spring?

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Currently Coveting #27: The Liberty Christmas Calendar

Liberty Christmas Calendar

 

With only 36 days to go until Christmas Day, the festive countdown has well and truly begun. In a few days’ time I will have to go up into the loft to hunt down the children’s wooden advent calendar and put it on the mantlepiece, ready to be filled with chocolates on December 1. This year though I rather fancy an advent calendar of my own and, as much as I love chocolate, my sights are set on this beauty calendar from Liberty. With a gorgeous picture of the iconic Regent Street store on the front, inside each Liberty Print decorated box hides a decadent beauty treat, from skincare to scent and everything in-between. If you’ve ever visited Liberty’s Beauty Hall you will know what a fabulous selection of must-have beauty buys there is to choose from.

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Currently Coveting #26: Alex Monroe Dragonfly Necklace

Alex Monroe Dragonfly

I absolutely love this dragonfly necklace in silver by Alex Monroe. It is the perfect whimsical, yet sophisticated, jewel to set off a summer outfit, whether casual or glam. Renowned for his irresistible nature-inspired pieces, the British jewellery designer’s collection also features bunnies, foxes, feathers and, of course, the iconic bumblebee. The latter is almost too life-like for my liking so I prefer the more ethereal dragonfly motif. I don’t often buy expensive jewellery (ie not costume jewellery) for myself but I may have to make an exception for this one…

Alex Monroe’s jewellery collection is available from Liberty

Currently Coveting #25: Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream

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Sometimes it pays to have friends in (literally) high places. I’m desperate to get my hands on the new Daisy Dream perfume from Marc Jacobs (worth getting for the bottle alone, I’m sure you would agree, but I have heard it is similar to the other Daisy fragrances which I love) but at the moment it is exclusive to World Duty Free. Sadly we have no travel plans until August so enter my friend who works for BA and has promised to try and get her hands on a bottle for me next week. Watch this space…

Currently Coveting #24: The Perfect Wedding (Guest) Dress

After a couple of wedding free years, we’re attending the nuptials of my husband’s second cousin this July. I love a good wedding and as the ceremony and reception are being held at Trinity College in Cambridge, it promises to be a fabulous day in a stunning setting. Now that we’ve accepted the invite and booked the hotel, the most pressing question on my mind is of course what to wear? I have a couple of dresses that would fit the bill, but the temptation to buy something new had me surfing the internet late last night looking for a suitable outfit. This dress from Carven (available from Harvey Nichols) would be perfect but unfortunately I can’t find it in XS at the moment and the advice is to size down as it comes up big. So now I have decide whether to chance it with a size Small or carry on searching…

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Currently Coveting #23: Kate Moss x Topshop

Kate Moss is the undisputed British style icon of the last two decades, topping virtually every best-dressed poll going and earning herself a legion of copycat fans. After a three-year hiatus she is back designing a collection for another British icon – high street store Topshop.

As with the pair’s previous collaborations, Kate looked to her own wardrobe for inspiration to create a collection which reflects her boho-luxe, laid-back style. The supermodel is renowned for her love of vintage so it’s no surprise that there are lots of 70s inspired pieces, from fringed suede jackets to jumpsuits and maxi dresses. Released on April 30, just in time for festival season, the collection will be available online and in Topshop stores. A small selection will also be sold by Net-A-Porter.

Working together with Topshop’s creative team, Kate has upped the luxury factor on the collection with beautiful fabrics and hand-finished detailing. While much of the collection will be sold at affordable prices, there are more expensive pieces like the scalloped blue satin maxi, which will retail for £295. The most expensive dress, a densely hand-beaded number, will be exclusive on Net-A-Porter for £600, with only 50 available.

Here are some of my favourite pieces from the collection:

We are going to a wedding in July and I think any of these dresses would be perfect:

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I am picturing this starry top worn with faded denim shorts for a laid-back vibe:

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A beaded jacket to add a luxe touch to any evening outfit:

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Currently Coveting #22: The Perfect Spring Dress

My wardrobe is full of floaty summer dresses for balmy, sunny days and long-sleeved thicker dresses to wear with tights in the winter. What it is lacking, though, are those in-between dresses that are suitable for the lovely spring weather we’re having at the moment. I’m thinking of dresses that you can wear with bare legs on warmer days but which also look good if you add a denim jacket or cardigan and a pair of leggings when the temperature drops.

Here are some of the best I’ve found so far:

Madewell dresses

My favourites are these dresses from Madewell, which sadly doesn’t ship to the UK.

Anthropologie dresses

Anthropologie always has a good selection of dresses and it didn’t disappoint this time either. My favourite is probably the patterned tunic as I have a penchant for comfortable dresses that can be teamed with black leggings.

Topshop dresses

Topshop is another go-to store for me when it comes to everyday dresses. I especially like the sweatshirt dress as it is both sporty and feminine. I wear a lot of grey and white already but the slash of deep pink adds a bit of interest.

Which one is your favourite?

Currently Coveting #21: Nike x Liberty

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Time to hold my hands up and take back everything I said about not being a trainer kind of girl – these babies are just too cute to pass up!

For Spring/Summer 2014, Nike and Liberty London have once again collaborated to create an on-trend collection that combines the sports giant’s classic footwear with floral prints from Liberty’s extensive print archive. In pretty shades of blue, with laces and trimmings in beige, the collection manages to combine sporty and delicate with stunning results.

Anoosha, a 1930’s print featuring blossom and bell flowers; Lora a print based on a 1970s version of William Morris’ ‘Willow’ pattern; and Crown, a design based on various paisley block prints, adorn the Air Max 1, Air Max 90, Roshe Run. For the first time, vintage running favourite the Internationalist also receives a Liberty makeover as do basketball classics, the Blazer and the Dunk Sky Hi.

Launching today, the full collection, which also includes running shorts, a windbreaker, and a vest is available in-store and online but it’s selling fast so hurry, hurry!

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Which is your favourite? I like the Internationalist (bottom left in the picture above) and the Blazer hi-tops (below) the most as they have thinner soles than the other styles.

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Currently Coveting #20: Ruth Tomlinson jewellery

Ruth Tomlinson

As someone who writes about fine jewellery for a living, being confronted with temptation on a daily basis is a hazard of the job. Most of the pieces I write about are either way beyond my budget or too ostentatious for my lifestyle  (or more often that not, they fall into both these categories) but the other week I came across a designer whose creations really speak to me. UK based jeweller Ruth Tomlinson’s unique designs are inspired by the idea of life cycles and changes in nature, from birth to decay. She launched her first collection in 2001 and has recently expanded into diamond rings and wedding bands.

With prices starting at £90 for a pair of earrings, these pieces from her Sketch collection (top row in the picture) are definitely going straight onto my birthday and Christmas wish lists. You can view all Ruth’s collections and buy online here

Currently Coveting #19: The Perfect Sweatshirt

Lately I’ve developed a bit of an obsession with sweatshirts. They are perfect for this time of year and easy to throw on in the morning when you don’t want to think too hard about what to wear. I also like the idea of teaming them with skinnies or a leather skirt and heels for a casual, yet glam, night time look. There are loads of nice sweatshirts out there at the moment, from bright coloured ones with brash slogans (which I’m definitely on the wrong side of 20 to wear! Only college kids could get away with those in my humble opinion) to more subtle options in muted hues like the ones I’ve picked out here. Comfortable AND stylish is always the best combination!

Sweatshirt 1

Karen Millen sweatshirt with sport detailing, reduced from £60 to £48.50; People Tree Love Heart Sweatshirt, reduced from £60 to £45; Asos sweatshirt with glitter heart, £25

Swaetshirts 2

Hamptons NY Baggy Beach Jumper from Wildfox, £101; Noisy May Varsity Sweatshirt, reduced from £20 to £15; Ribbed Sweatshirt by Boutique at Topshop, £45

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W Applique Sweatshirt from Whistles, £75; Whistles Fleur Logo Sweatshirt, £75; Cities Tri Marl Sweatshirt from Topshop, £24