Sunday, 28 February 2010

London Fashion Weekend

As you may or may not know, I somehow managed to win the competition for 2 VIP tickets to London Fashion Weekend - so I thought I'd give you the lowdown on my day out! It was an amazing experience – I’ve never seen so many beautiful clothes in one place! By some miracle, we navigated London’s tube network and found Somerset House, arriving exactly on time to pick up our free Chambord cocktails in the VIP lounge.
Soon, we were all called out to take our places on the front row of the London Fashion Weekend catwalk, which was basically a round up of all of the SS10 trends, as well as a show from Betty Jackson. It was really good seeing a catwalk ‘in the flesh’ – you can actually see all the details on the clothes, and the music created an amazing atmosphere.

Unfortunately I had some camera troubles during the show, but I managed to salvage some shots of my favourite ensembles, including this beautiful Frost French denim playsuit (really loving the bloomer style legs).

We had a chat with presenter Louise Roe afterwards (who was sporting an amazing orange jumpsuit – possibly from Jaeger?), which included some interesting views on the role of bloggers in the industry – I think the general conclusion was that it was a great way to have ‘raw’ and mostly impartial views on fashion, as well as blogs being a brilliant tool for anyone of any age to join in with the industry (think: Tavi Gevinson).

On leaving the VIP area we were given show bags containing all sorts of freebies, and then we went off to wander around the cavernous Somerset House to indulge in some discounted designer shopping. Now, this is where I feel like a let down: I didn’t buy a single thing. Haha. The whole aim of London Fashion Weekend is to be a shopping event, but I really really couldn’t afford any of it! For someone like me, £70 is still too much for a dress! It was nice having a thorough browse though, and we came across some beautiful things, such as patent Luella bags, Crocheted Collars from Aei Kei, vegetarian bags from the Rubber Cow Co, and, my favourite, Biba inspired dresses from Elizabeth Lau.

Left: Coat by Elizabeth Lau; Right: Dress by Elizabeth Lau
Clockwise from top left: Collar by Aei Kei; Necklace by Clara Francis; Necklace (handmade!) by Clara Francis, Dress from Berman Black by Sara Berman

Wanting to make the most of our coach tickets, we decided to head off into London in the afternoon, and stopped off in Portobello Road where they had some amazing vintage designer shops. I fell in love with a pair of black suede Chloé heels and then tried on an APC blazer – but they were both a bit out of my price range – still, it’s nice to dream! Ridiculously, we only got to Portobello market as it was closing, so I think we’ll have to make another trip to London to experience it!
Our outfits, hehe.

All in all it was a great day out; we discovered some brilliant new brands and getting the VIP treatment was definitely a highlight!

Sadie xxx

Friday, 26 February 2010

Some exciting news!

Hello everyone! Firstly, I just want to apologise for my temporary absence. I've spent the week reading books on Italian history & politics for my history coursework - sadly meaning I've had no time for clothes related activities. I've got a pile of fabric in the corner of my room that desperately needs to be turned into something - I just need to find a few spare hours! Also, disasterously, my laptop stopped working last night! I don't know what's wrong with it - it just won't turn on. :(.

But it's not all bad news... because I was very very shocked to discover that I won the 'Bargainista Show and Tell Challenge'! I really didn't think I'd win, so I'm absolutely delighted - and EXTREMELY excited about the prize: 2 VIP tickets to London Fashion Weekend! So tomorrow I'm getting up very early (4am...) and travelling to London with my best friend, courtesy of!

I don't really know what to expect - but I'll be sure to take loads of pictures and blog about my experience!
The outfit I'm wearing here was the solution to months of pondering about the best way to wear this peter-pan collar top, originally from Whistles but thrifted at a carboot for 75p. It's an awkward colour to pair with things (bright 'Cadbury' purple) - but I think I may have finally found the answer!

I'd best be off now - there's a very early wake-up ahead. And I still haven't decided what to wear...

Sadie xxx

P.S. I just had a hair cut and dyed it again - its not much different, but what do you think?

Thursday, 18 February 2010

'Bargainista Show and Tell Challenge'

I was recently contacted by to take part in another thrifty 'bargainista' challenge! This time, the challenge was to come up with the 'best runway look on a budget', and with that in mind, I came up with this outfit, inspired by SS10 trends. Yep, its more double denim - I'm kind of warming to the idea now!

I'm wearing:
  • Dungarees, eBay, 99p: Probably my best fashion bargain in terms of SS10 trends. I bought these last year, and they tick all the boxes for summer dungarees - even doubling up as a denim version of the popular playsuit!
  • Denim Shirt, Tommy Hilfiger via A Charity Shop, £2: I absolutely love this shirt - it fits perfectly and is a really nice light denim. It's going to get lots of wear this winter/spring/summer...autumn... because its just so versatile.
  • Straw Boater, my attic, free: I love finding things like this in my attic. It now has permanent residence on my hat stand.
  • Sunglasses, car-boot, 50p: These make the world turn orange. And that's not a bad thing.
  • Lace Tights, H&M, £6?: A sneaky way to wangle a bit of lace into the outfit.
  • Socks, Topshop, gift: Without a shadow of a doubt, these are my favourite socks. They have a cable knit design - much more sophisticated than the rest of my sock drawer.
  • Shoes, Clarks, gift: Can only be described as my one true love.
For some reason, I thought it would be a good idea to tie scraps of lace material around my wrist, but I've just realised that it looks like a bandage. Hmm.

Anyway, I also need to mention my top bargain hunting tip. I think it would probably be:

Never leave a stone unturned when you're looking through rails of clothes in charity shops or at car-boots - the best things are often hidden!

I call this the limp starfish pose ^

Anyway - the best news is, the competition is open to all bloggers in the UK! And even better news is that the top prize is 2 VIP Platinum Club Tickets to London Fashion weekend!!!!!!!!!!! If anyone wants to enter, contact me for the .pdf which contains all of the terms and conditions (for some reason, I can't link to it directly). The winner will be picked at midday on 19th February. (I just realised that that's very very short notice...).

Sadie xxx

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Satin Shorts

I've been a very busy bee lately, off all around the country for university open days! I was in Birmingham on Wednesday and happened to stumble upon Gok Wan filming 'How to Look Good Naked' in the Bull Ring shopping centre. It was very interesting to watch them filming it - quite different to how it looks on TV!

Anyway, here's another slightly ridiculous ensemble involving a different hat from my hat stand! I would never be brave enough to wear this out, but it's nice to experiment in the comfort of my own garden. I did have a gold necklace on as well but I took it off to avoid looking like I had literally raided a dressing up box.

The main point of this post is to show you my new homemade black satin shorts, loosely inspired by a pair seen on Florence Welch (only hers were cream coloured). I made them mainly as a challenge to myself - I've always thought shorts would be rather complicated in terms of needing to be exactly the right fit. Anyway, they fit! Hooray!

To make them I traced around panels on a pair of my other shorts, then added a band around the top to make them high waisted. I finished them off with an exposed zip! What do you think of them?

I found this white shirt in a charity shop. Although I quite like the collar, I'm thinking of doing a bit of a DIY on it to change it a bit. No doubt I'll show you the results if I do decide to alter it!

Sadie xxx

Monday, 8 February 2010

Rules of Fashion

Watching The September Issue last night left me thinking about the whole fashion industry. It's an industry quite unlike any other, with its own bizarre rules and pretensions and constant pressure to dissect designer's collections, decide on trends, sell them to the masses (or keep them for a few élite), but try not to lose originality on the way. And then start again from scratch in 6 months time. The whole thing is one, exciting, headache.

It was, nevertheless, hugely inspiring, and when it finished I had a good old rifle through my wardrobe to come up with an outfit that I might not normally wear. The result was this ensemble, which reminds me very much of English private schools with old fashioned uniform.

For me, it breaks numerous fashion rules. Immediately, theres the issue of 'double denim', haha. I've also always been quite dubious about skinny jeans and heels, I don't know why - I suppose that's just one of my own personal fashion rules. The other one is never take a theme too literally, and that went completely out of the window by involving the blazer and boater. But never mind eh! I think the whole shebang sort of works in a ridiculous kind of way!

Denim Shirt - Tommy Hilfiger via a Charity Shop
Jumper - Charity shop
Vintage velvet blazer - Charity shop
Jeans - New Look
Shoes - Clarks
Boater - My attic!

I'm still not 100% confident about the heels and skinny jeans idea, but I'm going to road test them at school today (edit: I chickened out!). Does anyone else have their own personal fashion rules?

Sadie xxx

P.S. I'll be back very soon with my latest creation!

Monday, 1 February 2010

My most ambitious sewing project to date!

Last week whizzed by in a flurry of economics revision and the resultant over-consumption of tea and biscuits. The exam (on Friday) was probably the worst exam I've ever done, but I'll have to wait for the results to see if it was as dire as I thought!

Anyway, you may remember me mentioning that I had an exciting sewing project under way... well, this coat is the result! All week long I was desperate to get back to work on it, and I was finally free to finish it off on Sunday. I am so proud of it!

It's made from the warmest, softest woolen fabric in a sumptuous deep burgundy colour. I think I may have finally finished my hunt for the perfect coat now :). I think that's one of the best things about sewing - you can make exactly what you want - and it costs less. The materials for this coat were under £20!

I made up the pattern based on the one I used for this dress, and had to adapt it a bit to make it suitable for a coat (for example, allowing for overlap on the front panels). The most mind boggling part was how to get the lining in - you have to plan it really far in advance. I'd compare sewing to playing chess... you have to anticipate what might go wrong and work out how to overcome the problem before it arises.

It's my own personal homage to the 1960s :).

Many of you have asked for tutorials for some of my sewing projects - it's very hard for me to explain most of them because I sort of make them up as I go along. BUT! I'm hopefully going to make a simple tutorial or a general hints and tips one soon!

Sadie xxx

P.S. I dyed my hair! It's a teeny bit darker/redder than before :).