frock swap | ring-a-ring a rosie...

i will admit, when this dress of char's turned up, i had no idea what i was going to do. it is shapeless, has massive pockets right around the thigh/bum area, and... is very loud. and that's hard for me to say, because i am a huge fan of colour, as you well know. and yet, as soon as i saw the print and cut of the dress, it sent my mind racing with how on earth i was going to style it.

i tried adding a belt to bring it in around the waist, but that just pulled all the excess fabric together and made me look...well, frumpy, which is not my favourite. it has ties attached to it that sit in a really awkward position on me, not quite across my back, but not quite under my bust, so, i wasn't sure how to really utilise that option either.

dress : charlotte's | shirt + boots : primark | ring c/o jewel street

eventually, i criss-crossed the ties across the front and then tied them to the back, meaning i could flatten some of the fabric down and pull it around my body toward the back also. this isolated just how much fabric was left to drown my bottom half. to hide the excess fabric at my back, i decided a long-line layer was needed, so naturally i wanted to grab for my fluffy cardi. but. it. was. in. the. wash! not sure how to proceed, i threw open all my drawers until my eyes rested upon my chambray shirt from a couple of seasons ago. i've not worn it in an age, and (yes, i know, yawn) it's now a little big for me, but is there a fabric more suitable for spring than chambray? answer: no.

if we're talking springtime suitability, then surely rose gold is another trend that's got to be hankering for it's turn in the spotlight again. this rose gold heart ring* by fiorelli came from jewel street - which, if you don't know anything about me, is my new fave website for accessories. it's basically like asos, but just for jewellery and accessories. there are over 300 independent boutiques ready to be shopped from, and you check out in one go; you can have multiple designers' pieces in your basket, but just one easy check out option. it's the lazy girl's (me) dream come true

i've been wearing rings *daily* (still take them off at night time) since my lovely stackers arrived last summer, and this wee pink thing has now been moved into the rotation. the rest of my rings are silver, and this is my only rose gold piece - perhaps i will keep it for wednesdays, perhaps not. anyway, it's definitely love(heart), which has to be why i chose it, i suppose.

here's how char and ally styled the garden print dress... who wore it best?
answers on a postcard (or, below).

my spring beauty fix (overhaul) at centrale croydon

last week i was invited along to the spring beauty fix event that was being held at centrale croydon over this last weekend. with make up demos, one-to-one make overs with industry experts and a ridiculous amount of offers and discounts on beauty and fashion - i could hardly say no. well, except for the fact it was in croydon, which is hardly my local shopping centre, or an ideal day out for me. but, in a bid to 'try new things' and 'see more places', i thought that i had nothing to lose, and may as well.

except... train disruption, so what should have been a half an hour train journey suddenly became a fifty minute rail replacement bus ride. which actually wasn't so bad, except i always panic that i won't know where to get off when i get on new bus routes. at least with rail replacement services, they only stop at the train stations, and i knew where i was going once i got to west croydon. (cool story, bro...)

i made my way over to the spring beauty fix event which was being held outside of debenhams on the ground floor, and said my hellos to the staff helping out for the day. with reps from the body shop, benefit, origins and lancome on hand for quick make overs, brow classes, and mini hand massages, there was loads going on already, so i grabbed my gift card and headed off to do some beauty fixing of my own.

first stop was getting a hair cut. it's been a couple of months since the last, and now that i'm trying to grow my fringe out, i thought that getting a trim would a) help bridge the gap, and b) at least encourage my hair to grow a bit faster. sitting in the hairdressers chair, under bright halogen lighting, i got so caught up with my reflection that i barely paid any attention to the questions to stylist was asking me.

i do my make up in natural lighting, and that's generally how i take my reflection; imperfect, but ultimately, natural. i recently bought the absolute lightest shade of foundation i could find in my usual brand (rimmell) after trying to colour match my foundation the best i can so i don't have a hideous orange line around my jaw, i don't ever use bronzers or peachy blushers, and i always use a really translucent loose powder - i keep my face as pale as possible, with rosey blush, and a pink lip. lately, i've been cutting back on the eye make up too - i think the older (and tireder) i get, the old (and tireder) this makes me look. i leave the house in the morning with a full face, but not a lot of make up, and yet, sitting in that chair, under horrible lighting, i hated what i was looking at.

i could see every flaw, every line, every scar. it made me feel horrible, and i hated the thought that this could be how i really look outside of my bedroom's natural lighting. in that chair and in that moment, i knew how i was going to spend my time at the beauty fix event: at the benefit counter, with an open mind. i needed a magical, youth-inducing fix for the haggard, tired face i was looking at.

isn't it funny what you don't know about things you think you know about. wait, what? like, i have been wearing make up daily since i was eighteen years old, and yet... i have no idea how you're supposed to wear make up; so. many. layers. she took my face off and carefully reapplied it, one layer at a time. moisturiser, primer, foundation, blush, primer, other gunk, more other gunk... so many layers of gunk, but on my face, it felt like nothing. and in the mirror, i was flipping glowing.

half an hour with emily was an eye opening experience. in between her laughing at my hilarity (natch), she educated me on the how and why of each product she was using, and in no way pressured me to buy anything. the thing i was most impressed by on my face was the colouring. even though the foundation shade she'd used was technically still the lightest of the shades available, it was a warm tone rather than a cool one, which meant it matched perfectly to my pinky skin tone. looking at my face, it was like i was make up free, but even and flawless. flawless.

naturally, i bought the foundation. and the mascara,  because i kind of didn't believe the hype of "they're real", until she put it on my eyelashes. and then i wanted to hug dear emily, because she made all of my long-lash dreams come true. i couldn't stop looking in all of the mirrors after that, because all i wanted to do was look at my fresh, dewy face, and see how all the gunk she'd applied had literally changed the look of my face. miracles do happen!

bonus points to emily for telling me i had great brow and liner game, too.
nice to know this old lady can still master a pencil. 

snapshots | palma de mallorca, part two

we woke up on saturday to glorious sunshine - it was a holiday miracle! we'd done a lot of sight seeing on our first day, but we had found a couple of foodie spots we wanted to try (thanks to the info in the compendium!), and so we headed out mid-morning for food in less layers than the day before, and sunglassed to the max. sunshiiiiine!

(side note: palm trees were made for blue skies, fact.)

we wandered down by the water (and palms) back through to the new part of town, headed for a brunch spot that we'd heard was both cheap and not tapas, and so off we went... not thinking to check what time it would open, which... we soon discovered wouldn't be for more than an hour after we'd arrived. not defeated, we fell into the first restaurant we could find that was open, and dined on... burgers and fries. because, when in rome,,,

(side note: palm trees. for real. blue skies. beautiful.)

after lunch we headed to the marina before lazily making our way back through the tourist spots from the day before, to re-take all of the photos from the day before. everything looks better with a blue background, fact. then there was ice cream. then there was reading a book in a lazy chair in the balcony of our flat, and mayyyybe a small siesta. local customs are local customs, ok! woke up just in time to catch the most wonderful sunset. the perfect end to the perfectly sunny day.

on our final day we wandered aiiiiimlessly for ages, because if things don't open before midday on a weekday, they certainly don't open at all on a sunday. we ended up in a massive tourist trap for... well, lunch, by the time we got there, and indulge in - you guessed it, tapas! croquettes and spanish omelette and patatas bravas, oh my.

we found a shop with a churros sign - something we hadn't yet been able to find, ordered some, and then got laughed out of the shop. apparently no churros? even with a sign? no. no churros for you. disappointed, but not defeated, we made do with more ice cream, the third of the trip, before heading back to the flat to pack and head off to the airport.

even though we only had one and a half days in the sun, it was easily the most relaxing holiday i'd had since the lake district at christmas. the amount of reading, relaxing and catching up on sleep i did was just what i needed to recuperate, revitalise and regroup. more of that this year please. i'm done with busy holidays, i want more of these casual and quiet ones.

next stop: cornwall over easter for more of the same.

wishlist | payday picks

bag | glasses | skirt | jeans | platforms | sandals | skirt | ring

paydaaaaay is heeeeere, and here are a couple of the pieces i have saved in various bags and baskets around the interwebs. "jeeeeaaaaans?!" i hear you all crying in shock and outrage, and yes. over the years, when "boho is back" (again), i am often tempted to try on a pair of wide legs or flares just to remind myself whhhhy i haven't physically worn a pair in almost six years. this high waisted pair from h&m is going to be the happy recipient of, and catalyst for all my body hate this season, i think! 

i'm clearly stuck on the boho theme at the moment, if the accessories are anything to go by; leather sandals, wooden platforms and crocheted bags fill my imaginary baskets, and i am quite sure that at least one of those pairs of shoes has already been purchased. time will tell whether or not that is the case.

what spring trends are you coveting at the moment?

w.i.w.t | white and rose-y

jumper c/o george at asda | skirt : h&m | boots*: asos

so i mentioned the other day that i'd made the foolish decision to attempt oxford street on a saturday, but found later that it was worth it for an adorable skirt i'd nabbed in the sale at h&m in my haste at fleeing new look. well, i also picked up this floral skater skirt on the same day, because it's skirt perfection, and both of them made their way to palma with me over the weekend too. perfect little transitional numbers, made more perfect by the fact they can both still be worn with some of my "it's still too cold at work to be called spring" favourites - like this fluffy jumper from george.

i love the beading detail around the neckline, and actually, at how boxy the shape is. normally, i'm not one for anything that makes me look squarish and wider than i am, but i'll let this one pass because it's cropped enough to still flatter my shape. i really *needed* another fluffy jumper, because, i didn't have a white one. have a white fluffy *cardi*, but not a white fluffy *jumper*, so there was definitely a hole in my collection... 

*side eye emoji man*

for god sakes, this fringe growing malarkey is doing my head in. what even is this style?
i need hair-related help. leave your best fringe-growing styles below.