(Dress: Closet at ASOS, Necklace: Thomas Sabo, Watch: Michael Kors)

I'll be calling this one 'the one where I took poor quality pictures and edited the heck out of them/posted them in a big bundle to try and get away with it'. I mentioned that I have a fully fledged print obsession right now and this dress is the beauty that started it off. (I loved it so much I bought the skirt too). Short sleeves and low back make it cool enough for spring (it was bloody cold shooting these as the dress has a deep V back) but thick, stretchy fabric make it warm enough for winter. And that gorgeous autumn harvest print...

(Dress: ASOS, Scarf: Helen Moore, Top: Dorothy Perkins, Watch: Michael Kors, Belt: I forgot!)

Again, a pretty poor picture, and not the best way to wear this dress (it'll look better once I can ditch the top and tights underneath and wear it with sandals) but another lovely print. I've recently remembered quite why I liked it so much - it reminds me of this absolute beaut of a dress by Samantha Pleet (modelled here by the gorgeous Zoe Kazan lookalike, Rebecca of The Clothes Horse).

And it has POCKETS! I love a dress with pockets, and ASOS are always good at delivering. Got another excellent dress with pockets stored up and coming soon...

...but not before one look at that amazing autumnal print in all its glory...sigh...


Flowers in the Snow

(Top and necklace: ASOS, Scarf: Helen Moore, Watch: Michael Kors, Skirt: Zara)
Now historically I've never been that big on a) floral prints or b) smart tops. I'm not sure why because recent experiments have enlightened me to their potential. I think after spending a whole season in plainer clothes and bold jewellery I've gone the opposite way for winter. And I am enjoying it immensely. Given the number of '70s-style prints appearing on the high street it doesn't look like the print explosion in my wardrobe is being cleared up any time soon...
 Ok so I wasn't TOTALLY ejected from the big bling wagon...
(Coat: Topshop)
And I am FIRMLY back on the burgundy bandwagon. The colour more than the beverage. A few seasons ago I was obsessed with a colour combination that still has my heart to this day - neon yellow and grey. But for winter (and likely spilling over into spring) I love nothing more than sky blue and deep, deep red. Now if anyone wants to buy me this delicious Shrimps coat that perfectly encapsulates that match made in heaven...


Chilly Down

Brrrrr Upper East Siders, it's cold out! (Sorry, while cleaning my room this weekend I went on a Gossip Girl binge as background noise).

But it IS cold out. We can expect snow any day now. So in preparation, I'm practising my layering.

(Coat and dress: ASOS, Jumper: gift, Belt: Ted Baker (part of dress), Scarf: Helen Moore, Necklace: Thomas Sabo, Shoes (next picture): Clarks)

Ok I think I'm warm enough now. There's gotta be about six million layers in there. Ok not really. There's a lovely light floaty dress that (again) I was dithering over after spotting it in Pandora Sykes' Wardrobe Mistress column in the ST Style magazine and then ASOS helpfully lopped half the price off. Good work ASOS. 

Same with the coat, which is like a large blanket with arms and does have the tendency to make me look a bit bag lady-esque when worn with a big hat. But sans hat and avec lots of other lovely purpley tones (especially a matte lip - Sleek Makeup, get on it - that perfectly matches the belt; hat tip to me) it's definitely a do. 

Also, how good are these shoes? High street flats seem to have a vendetta against me in that every time I walk to the exact spot that's equidistant between my home and my destination they decide to rip a massive hole in one or both of my ankles. But not THESE. They are comfy, stylish and from CLARKS. So you know they won't fall apart after five seconds.


That '70s Show

I never said I was going to ditch the awful post titles, now did I?

 (Dress and hat: ASOS. Boots: & Other Stories, Watch: Michael Kors, Necklace: Thomas Sabo)

When it comes to the incredible treasure trove that is the British high street, each season seems to get better than the last in my book. Or maybe, every trend seems to appeal to me more than the last one did. The vogue for big, bold prints that took a firm grip of me and my wardrobe in the summer showed no signs of letting go this autumn and has led to me acquiring an unhealthy (or healthy) number of print dresses for the remains of the winter.

Starting with this beauty from ASOS, which I dithered over adding to my basket as it wasn't on sale but oh how glad I am that I did. It fits beautifully, is light enough to wear when the weather eventually warms up and is such a complex and interesting print that it needs very little effort, or accessorising! I added a big floppy hat to disguise excessively long (by my standards) hair that wasn't behaving and knee-high boots, as well as a couple of my gorgeous birthday presents (I turned 27 just before Christmas) from Michael Kors and Thomas Sabo (who I'll likely be cooing over in a later post...).


The Return

That's right, everyone. She's BACK ON THE ROAD for 2015!
Here I am looking suitably thoughtful (not gormless, promise) about some changes made around here. Because there have been a few changes. You'll notice the most prominent one up there in the URL (which will likely sound the death knell to traffic for a little while), a change that has been mimicked across Instagram and Twitter (though, as said URL has been taken as a Twitter username by some pesky eggbot, I'm actually using MY REAL NAME on Twitter).

So why the change, and what does it mean?

Well, in case you didn't notice I fell off the radar in a spectacular fashion about four months ago. Off the wagon, for sure. A number of reasons came into play: 
  • I didn't have a tripod to shoot outfit shots, and having moved house I'd also lost the handy little ledge in back garden that I used to rest my camera on (not the best idea, as it did fall off and require a serious bit of fixing)
  • I didn't have the time - see the 'moving house' bit, also the 'fab new house that I just wanted to run around hugging all the bits of', 'living near a super-cool area so spending all time running round hugging all the bits of it', 'getting obsessed with the gym in the evenings', 'the awesome job still being awesome', the 'endless excuses' bit...
  • Instagram was more convenient - related to the above. It's just so handy and those who follow me on it will see I've been keeping up my stylin' as well as having plenty of fun over the past few months
  • I found the tone quite restricting - the URL, the name, the whole 'brand' thing seemed quite restricting to me, which was idiotic considering I'd set it up for myself! But I'm always telling my clients to set a brand and stick to it, so what could I do (I thought)?

All this culminated in me cancelling my direct debit to maintain the old, blogspot-free address and me preparing to post a farewell post (in an amusing coincidence, the blogger 'The Redhead Fashionista' has now done the same thing) came to a head when the magic date of December 31st (quite possibly my least favourite day of the year) rolled round...and rolled past. I'd missed the weird 'witching hour' for change and reinvention, and I dithered around shutting down the blog for good. Then, a few days later, a friend who was trying to namedrop bloggers to a contact of hers asked me what had happened to mine, if I wasn't 'trendy' anymore. As soon as she said that, I took another look at the blog. It was my saving grace when I left university and was drifting rudderless through unemployment. It took a back seat when my career got going, and it's remained there ever since. It's always been there for me and I couldn't abandon it after I realised that.

So with that in mind, I thought about ways to keep it alive and to set myself realistic aims to keep it operating. And then the name change hit. As you might have noticed from the picture above and from Instagram, I'm not so much a redhead anymore - while I still am at heart and my roots (when re-dyed) are red, I'm slowly getting bleached highlights to gradually create a more tousled blonde effect. So while I'm still a fashionista in the sense that I meticulously organise my wardrobe and spend far too much money on my appearance (in every aspect; more on that later) I'm not as red-headed as I used to be.

Another issue I had was how to consolidate my fashionista persona with my offline, real-world persona, something that becomes particularly evident when colleagues ask about the original of my old Twitter handle. While they can immediately understand it, I've been leaving it off business cards for a fair few years now (as it's not the most professional of names) while slowly adjusting my Twitter tone to suit the fact that my place of work is now in my bio. Less swearing, more consideration in areas that might upset clients, sharing articles and thoughts that interest me in a work scenario as well as a personal one. Because as we get older, if we're lucky, our work lives and home lives cross over because we're doing jobs we genuinely love. I can honestly say that right now I'm doing a job I genuinely love (sure, I don't like it all the time, but that's natural) and I want to be able to talk about it here too. Someone at work joked that I was 'the closest thing to Lady Gaga in the office', and while there's not a meat dress in sight in my wardrobe I do love being able to say 'I work in technology communications' and watch people's eyes sweep my outfit, and widen.

So, I thought, why not combine the two? I've toyed with names for a while - things that combine 'fashion' and 'technology' - but, quite simply, I already had the new URL taken a long time ago (for a site intended to cover the 'real world persona' side of what I wanted to write online) and it just made sense. Thankfully, the Instagram name wasn't taken either, and being able to use my real name on Twitter while likely be much more sensible for work in the long run.

So, welcome to the new site! I hope that it will combine my extensive wardrobe and accessories with outfit posts, spotlight posts on different pieces, makeup and hair, photos from my jaunts around, while ALSO being a place where I can link to my work blog posts and write about the stories that interest me from the world of digital communications. Because it doesn't make sense to try and keep my offline and my online personas separate any more.

So here I am, armed with a new URL, a new look for the blog (still to be refined further), a new mission object and, crucially, a tripod!

Let's get this show on the road...


Well hello there...

*to camera* Did you really think I'd forgotten you?
Bonus points if you can name that quote. Mild judgement if you can't. Don't expect to have any cool friends to hang out with on 27th February, that's all I'm saying. 
Anyhow, to business. Please excuse my long absence. This blog has evolved a lot in both style and purpose in the five (?) years since it was born from the fires of the Internet, and I thought I'd finally outgrown it. You'll have noticed the change in URL - I was, in all honesty, about to shut it down. I do spend most of my time lurking on Instagram these days, and Tumblr would be a heck of a lot more convenient. But I've been here a long time and I figured I'm not quite ready to give it up yet. I even bought myself a tripod so I wouldn't have to rely on any more awful selfies in my office toilets (the above from my birthday last year), though given the torrential rain currently drumming on my windows I don't know whether this will be the solution to my problems. 
But I figure I'll give this another go. I've got a busy job and a busy schedule and I have more plans to shake things up around here (including, potentially, a new name), so it might be a little while. But I'm working on it...