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A Guide To Perfecting Your Maternity Style

Pregnancy style

You’re pregnant – congratulations! This is such an exciting time in your life, whether it’s your first or third child. But as you probably know, your body is going to go through a lot of changes in the next nine months and if this is your first time, some of these might seem a bit crazy!

But being pregnant doesn’t have to mean questionable maternity leggings, baggy jumpers and hair scrunchies (unless you love a scrunch of course!). This is a guide for all the mums-to-be out there that are looking to rock their pregnancy style over the coming months, no matter how much your belly might grow. Here are seven tips for the ultimate maternity style.

Think about long-term investments

You’ll be amazed how quickly your body changes during different stages of your pregnancy, therefore you need to think long-term whenever you buy something new for your wardrobe. It’s always a good idea to shop for clothes that can grow with you or that will create flattering silhouettes. Otherwise you might find you’ve grown out of it in a matter of weeks.

Dresses are always a win because they leave room to grow, they’re loose and comfortable – especially in the warmer months! Shift dresses hug an expanding bump and look good at all stages of pregnancy, alternatively, opt for wrap dresses that will cup your bump.

For the colder weather, long cardigans, blazers and trench coats are perfect for creating a flattering silhouette whilst keeping you warm. In general, it’s always best to avoid buying any statement pieces that are going to go out of fashion within the month. You want timeless pieces that can be worn again and again throughout your pregnancy. Plus, these are always good to have if you plan on having more children in the future!

Don’t neglect your existing wardrobe

It can be surprising what maternity-friendly items you already have hanging in your wardrobe. You might already have a weakness for maxi dresses, ponchos or over-sized knits and these can all become part of your maternity style. So before you go out shopping, take a look through what you already have and assess what garments are going to be the most comfortable and pregnancy friendly. This will give you a better idea of the sorts of things you might want to go out and buy later.

Accessories can make all the difference

As said above, you don’t want to buy anything that’s going to be a passing trend, so it’s best to keep most of your maternity clothes timeless and classic. You can then add accessories to jazz up your outfit and add an extra wow factor to your maternity style. If you want to add a touch of personality to an outfit with personalised jewellery, just be sure you don’t choose anything that is going to become too tight or restricting. Other than that, you can’t go wrong with throwing on some statement jewellery to complete your look.

Don’t be afraid to try new things

It can be tricky pushing yourself out of your comfort zones when it comes to your style. After all, you don’t want to walk around all day feeling uncomfortable or self conscious. But when you become pregnant this can sometimes force you to try new things, because the old things simply won’t work anymore. For example, you might have always been a fan of those tight skinny jeans, but at eight months pregnant shoehorning yourself and your bump into them is just no longer practical or comfy.

This means you’ll need to push the boat out a little and try something different. Remember, you don’t have to make drastic changes like starting to wear bright florals, or only dress in black despite having never done this before. You simply need to find stylish but classic items that you feel confident in. Even if these seem a little plain, remember you can accessorise to add to your look – so don’t be afraid to try new things and change it up a bit. After all, confidence and comfort are always the key to looking and feeling great.

Embrace the athleisure movement

Right now is the perfect time to be a pregnant women, because believe it or not, trackies and leisure wear are dominating the mainstream right now. This means you’ll be able to find affordable, comfortable and stylish clothes in many of your favourite high street stores. So even if you’ve not been one for the athleisure look before, now could be the perfect time to embrace your inner Sporty Spice!

Don’t forget to treat yourself

Remember style isn’t just about the clothes you buy, it’s about feeling confident and beautiful, inside and out. So don’t feel guilty about treating yourself every once in a while. You may not be able to go for conventional spa treatments, spray tans and so on, but there are so many other ways you can pamper yourself. Splurge on your favourite make-up or buy some great new skin care products that are going to leave you glowing (even more than you already are). This will all add to your look and help you to feel confident and like your true self.

Embrace the bump

Pregnancy is no longer something to hide in the shadows, nor does it mean you instantly need to turn into a mum wearing only practical clothes, because they’ll eventually be covered in spit up and milk, right? Wrong! Pregnancy is beautiful and it’s your time to shine. Nowadays you can even find pregnant women on catwalks around the world. So embrace your impending motherhood and dress it up to suit your style.

Pregnancy and motherhood has become so celebrated in recent years. Some very famous and stylish women are often photographed out and about with their (equally as stylish) kids in tow, as they attend fashion shows or go about running their own businesses. So choose clothes, accessories and beauty products that show you’re proud of your bump and that you can still be a stylish and confident woman even at nine months pregnant!

Which Love Island Personality Are You?

Love Island Contestants

Love Island 2018 was fueled with drama, budding friendships, a lot of re-coupling and loyalty…? Hmmm, well either way it consumed our every thought, Whatsapp message, conversation and meme we tagged our mates in. Oh yes, it was a big one. In fact, you probably found yourself gossiping about Dani, Megan, Wes and Laura like they were your next door neighbours. And the best news is, Love Island 2019 is almost here!

But as you sat each day and watched religiously between the hours of 9pm to 10pm, did you ever wonder which Love Island cast member was most like you? Perhaps you found a connection with an islander that every other member of the nation seemed to disagree with, because you are secretly two peas in a pod. Don’t pretend you didn’t, because we all did!

If you’re still not sure where you would fit in the villa, we’re here to tell you which Love Islander best matches your personality and who might be your ‘type on paper’.

The Player

Happy to move from partner to partner, settling down is not the player’s style. Why stick with just one person when there are so many out there, right? In the age of Tinder and Bumble what does monogamy even mean anyway. This indecisive character is content playing the field and sliding into everyone’s DMs.

Are you a player?

Does the thought of settling down bore you? If you always find yourself sneaking out in the morning or texting multiple people at once, you certainly fit the bill. Players like you always have one eye on the door to see if someone better will walk through it – and you’ve no hesitations moving on if they do.

Your love Islander match: Megan Barton Hanson and Adam Collard

You know what they say, don’t hate the player, hate the game, right? Your perfect match is commitment-phob Megan Barton Hanson who had her fair share of the Love Island lads, and Adam Collard who wasn’t afraid to make his move when someone better came along.

The Peacock

Always in the middle of every argument, drama or DMC going, the peacock loves being centre of attention. If a relationship isn’t loud and public, fuelled by jealous rage, huge rows and an over the top apology, then they don’t want to know. The peacock is at their best when all eyes are on them, which of course they usually are because they’re making a scene.

Are you a peacock?

Do you love being the centre of attention? If you can always be found strutting about, getting involved in drama whether it’s yours or not, you my friend are like the peacock, putting on a big display to attract attention and make sure everyone is looking at you (though sometimes for the wrong reasons).

Your love Islander match: Georgia Steel

Dead set on everyone knowing how ‘loyal’ she was, Georgia wasn’t afraid to get involved in the drama and bitching of the house, and if you dare question her motives – well, she was just being loyal, OK!

The Joker

The joker can remove any negative vibes from the room and cheer you up instantly. A hilarious prankster they love nothing more than making their friends and family smile. A little bit less confident in themselves, they use humour to make you fall in love with them, which you will because they are hilarious. The most important thing to the joker is finding someone they can have a laugh with, whether that’s a friend or partner.

Are you a joker?

If you’re always cracking jokes, playing pranks and constantly being told how funny you are then you’re the joker of the group. If people can’t help but smile when you’re around it’s because your funny personality and positive vibes are infectious.

Your love Islander match: Jack Finch

Less confident than the rest of the lads, Jack seemed a little coy at first. But his funny nature, banter and jokes were enough to secure him the lovely Dani for the entire season.

The Genuine One

The genuine one will drop anything to help their friends or family, but will also call them out if necessary. A genuinely caring soul they just want happiness and to spread positivity to those around them. Plus they try to avoid drama where possible and don’t like to make a big scene. They’re just happy being them and they accept everyone else for who they are.

Are you genuine?

If you’re not one for getting bogged down in gossip or drama and you’re much happier when everyone is just relaxed and having a good time, then your personality match could be a genuine one. You prefer people to be themselves and you’re always there to lend a hand when someone needs you.

Your love Islander match: Dani Dyer

Coupled with Jack from the start, the pair made a genuine connection. Dani was not interested in the bitching, backstabbing and re-coupling, but she was there to comfort her house mates when they needed a shoulder to cry on.

The Hippy

Into all things peace, love and harmony, the hippy just wants everyone to get along and find world peace. Not afraid to whip out a guitar and start a sing along, or share their views on the planet and human rights, they can sometimes be referred to as the ‘hippy dippy kind’. They mean well of course, even if you don’t always agree with what they’re saying.

Are you a hippy?

Are you the first to share your opinion, especially when it comes to being vegan, animal rights or plastic waste? Then you might be considered the hippy of the group. But don’t take this as a bad thing, there’s nothing wrong with being passionate about the world around you.

Your love Islander match: Eyal Booker

Despite not wanting to come across as a preacher (or even be seen to use the word preacher too often), Eyal wasn’t afraid to share his opinion, especially when he felt passionately about something.

So which Love Islander are you and your friends?

What To Wear On Your First Day At A New Job

A Guide For Every Dress Code

Your first day at a new job can be nerve wracking enough without throwing in the extra pressure of choosing the perfect outfit. Of course you want to make an impression, but you need it to be the right one. Plus, you really need to focus all your energy on taking notes, remembering where the staff room is, getting to grips with the new software and remembering everyone’s names – not stressing over your outfit or re-adjusting it every five minutes.

That’s why we’ve put together this complete guide on choosing the perfect first day outfit that will impress everyone on the team, without spending hours agonising over your wardrobe beforehand. We’ll also offer some do’s and don’ts of choosing your outfit based on how formal the office dress code is.

Do your research and understand the dress code

Nowadays many businesses are choosing to offer casual dress as a workplace perk, while some still choose to stick with traditional professional dress. That said, in some businesses it can even vary across departments, so you need to make sure you have a clear understanding of the dress code and what will be expected of you.

The interview is your first chance to establish the dress code for the business. If the meeting is held in their offices you’ll be able to get a good look at what everyone is wearing when you arrive. You might also find that the interviewer will outline the dress code to you, alternatively, you could always ask this question at the end of the interview.

However, don’t take for granted that what you see is what you get. Some companies who favour smart dress will also choose to run dress down days or casual Friday’s as a perk to staff, so it’s always a good idea to check with your potential employer. If you don’t get the answers you need during the interview stages, it’s best to get in touch with your future employer before you join and ask them to tell you the dress code. This will help you to avoid any potentially embarrassing faux pas on your first day.

What to wear for smart/professional dress codes

Professional dress was once the norm for any worker and though it’s becoming less common, there are still many workplaces that insist on smart dress. This is particularly true if you’re in customer or client facing roles, where appearance and professionalism are important. But smart dress codes don’t have to be stuffy or uncomfortable. If you’re expected to look the part on your first day, this is what we suggest.

For men, a strong suit is always a classic. You might not always want opt for the full suit, perhaps some days you can forgo the blazer or leave your tie at home, but on your first day it’s a good idea to dress to impress. Remember to iron your shirt and avoid choosing garish or novelty ties, and don’t neglect the footwear! Leather shoes in black or brown are always a win – just make sure they aren’t scuffed or worn out.

For the ladies about to begin their new job smart dress can feel like a bit of a minefield. It’s vital that you keep hemlines in mind and don’t wear anything low cut or revealing. Think stylish and iconic like Audrey Hepburn with a fitted black dress and blazer, or alternatively you could wear a pencil skirt and nice blouse. If dresses and skirts aren’t for you then don’t panic, tailored ankle trousers, a crisp white shirt and a blazer will do the job too.

Pair your outfit with kitten heels (not stilettos or wedges that are going to destroy your ankles after one day) or flat pumps. Again, choose a classic and understated colour like nude or black. You can inject some personality into your outfit with complimenting jewellery.

What to wear for smart/casual dress codes

Smart casual – what does that even mean? Now this one can be tricky as you need to draw the perfect line between being smart and professional, but not looking over dressed – not something you want to be stressing about on your first day at a new job. But fear not, we have the answers!

As a woman you could still choose some fitted ankle trousers, but ditch the blazer and choose a light blouse and cardigan. This adds just the right amount of sophistication to your first day outfit, but won’t leave people questioning whether you’re uptight or just looking to get promoted right away! Alternatively, a smart dress with some tights and pumps would also work, and as the dress code is more casual you can be a bit more playful with your accessories.

For the men about to embark on their first day at a new job, keep it classic but cool with a crisp shirt. You can pair this with some tailored trousers or chinos. As the dress code states smart casual, don’t get bogged down with ties and blazers, instead arrive looking sharp and professional, whilst also coming across as relaxed and ready to learn.

What to wear for a casual dress code

Just because the office dress code is casual, this does not mean you can arrive looking like a slob, or indeed turn up in your pyjamas (unfortunately). Even if the company is pretty relaxed, it’s still a good idea to make sure you look presentable, after all, this is your first day! It’s also vital that you avoid wearing anything that is creased or crinkled from the wash basket, or that is still sporting last weekend’s pizza stains.

If you’re a man, on your first day you should opt for something that says you’re serious and professional, but doesn’t risk you looking too over-dressed. This could mean smart jeans or chinos, paired with a nice polo top, crew neck, shirt or jumper depending on the weather. It’s also important that you choose clean shoes, even if these are trainers. Old, worn and tatty shoes of any kind can give the wrong impression.

As a woman, casual dress codes could mean a cute (but in no way revealing) summer dress, or in the colder months perhaps some floral trousers, pumps and a nice jumper. If dresses aren’t your thing, perhaps some smart jeans (not distressed or ripped), a knitted jumper and some jewellery to complete the look. Again, nothing that is going to be too over the top, but it’s best to avoid slouchy clothes like leggings and oversized hoodies.

16 Great Gift Ideas For Toddlers

Toddler Gift Ideas

Whether it’s for your son, daughter, niece, nephew, godchild or grandchild – finding the perfect gift for a toddler can be a minefield! After all, there are so many toys and gadgets out there to choose from, you could spend hours wandering around the toy shop with no idea what to buy.

If you’re on the hunt for the perfect gift right now, remember that toddlers are curious and they’re learning all the time, so toys or gifts that stimulate them and encourage them to learn are always good! Alternatively, you can never go wrong with something practical but cute – and these often help mum and dad too!

If you’re in need of some inspiration for the little ones in your life, here’s 16 gift ideas they’re sure to love!

1. Personalised books

Perfect for making bed time easier, why not consider a personalised book. These gifts are not only very sweet, but they can help to develop a child’s reading skills as they grow older. There are a number of companies out there that make personalised stories for children, with titles such as ‘The little girl who lost her name’ – all you need to do is let them know who the story is for.

2. Building blocks

Building blocks are always a win when it comes to keeping a toddler entertained, plus they’re a great tool for learning. Duplo are particularly great as they stimulates their senses and help them to think more logically while still having fun. Plus they come in a huge range, from simple numbered blocks to train sets or zoo creatures.

3. Bath toys

Make bath time fun with flannel finger puppets, rubber ducks or bath time games. These can be a really useful tool for the development of toddlers, but they also make having a bath less of a chore for young children. Something their parents will certainly appreciate.

4. Welly boots

It’s not just Peppa Pig that enjoys splashing around in muddy puddles you know! A cute pair of welly boots is always an adorable addition to any toddler’s wardrobe. Plus they offer hours of entertainment splashing around in the garden or going out on muddy walks.

5. Colourful flashcards

Help them to learn and have fun at the same time. Educational flash cards can be a great way to teach them new words and keep them engaged, making learning into a game.

6. A scooter

Scooters are all the rage these days and there are a number of options available to those who are slightly younger. A three wheeled scooter makes balancing easier for the little ones, or if they’ve got great balance already you could always challenge them with two wheels. Either way, they’re going to love playing outside with their new scooter.

7. Cuddly toys

A companion to take to bed each night and play with all day, every child loves a cuddly toy! Have a personalised bear made for them or choose one of their TV favourites, but a soft toy is always a warm and welcome gift for a toddler.

8. Musical instruments

Whether you choose a xylophone, a light up drum set or a miniature piano, musical instruments make a great gift (though their parents might not always thank you for it!). You can stimulate their senses and encourage their musical genius as they play, who knows, they might even become a famous rockstar one day.

9. Play kitchen

Why not encourage your little one to become a Michelin star chef? Play kitchens can either be kept inside, or plastic varieties can even be great for the garden. But either way, let their imagination run wild as they prepare meals and share these with you and the rest of the family.

10. Children’s backpacks

Let them feel grown up as they carry around their own bag just like you do! There are a range of cute backpacks available for young kids, perfect for storing their toys, spare clothes or that ever handy pack of baby wipes. You can even choose a backpack with a reign so that they can’t wander off when you’re out in a busy area.

11. Themed playmats

These mats have become almost iconic, you probably remember the old town/village scene printed on a nylon playmate. This itself was great for pushing toy cars or playing with dolls as the towns people. But nowadays you have even more choice available to you, you can choose from a farm scene, race track or even a funfair. And best of all they last for years, so you can prolong the fun!

12. Shopping trolleys and tills

Arguably the staple of any childhood, let their imagination soar as they pretend to be wandering the supermarket isles just like grown ups do. They’ll have hours of fun pushing around their trolley of food and better yet, you can even add a till to the mix. Complete with money and a card machine, watch them play pretend as the shopkeeper too.

13. Pop up tents

Children’s pop up tents are so versatile with so many themes available. You can choose from a classic tent, a princess castle, a fortress, a teepee or even a rocket. Perfect for inside and outside play and easy to set up, these are great for getting their imaginations flowing.

14. Ride on cars

Again, these can be used for playing inside and out and you can choose from something timeless (you’ve guessed it, the Little Tikes red and yellow coupe car) or something personalised. You can have wooden ride on cars personalised with the toddlers name, or keep it classic with something they won’t mind riding through the mud.

15. Tools/doctor sets

Perhaps you have a future doctor in your midst? Or a mechanic? There are a range of role play sets out there that toddlers will love. As children love mimicking adults and fixing things up or being helpful around the house, these role play sets can be the perfect way to boost their problems solving and creativity skills.

16. Personalised Money Boxes

This list wouldn’t be complete without one of our very own offerings, personalised kid’s money boxes which are ideal gifts for occassions such as christenings, their first communion and birthdays. We have a wide variety of money boxes to choose from which can all be personalised to include names and dates, there’s even a unicorn one!

A Guide To Surviving The Festival Season

Festival Season

Festival season is just round the corner and if you’ve already bought your tickets, you’re probably getting pretty excited by now. But the key to a fun and stress-free festival is preparation and a little bit of sensible thinking. So to help you survive the festival season and enjoy every second, we’ve put together a survival guide to ensure you don’t forget any of those all important essentials.

Plan ahead

Once you’ve booked your tickets it’s a good idea to get the logistics in place right away. This means deciding where you’ll be staying if it’s a weekend event, and planning how you’re getting to and from the festival and even possibly sending your baggage ahead. If you’re going to be camping, make sure you have a tent or motorhome and any other essentials you’ll need for a comfortable weekend. If you’re not a camper, you might want to find some accommodation nearby instead.

Next you need to decide how you’ll be getting there. Will someone be driving and how many cars will you need? Lift sharing is always a good idea as you may have to pay for a parking spot for the duration of the festival, plus you can split the cost of petrol.

Alternatively, you might be planning on getting the train or a lift from a kind volunteer. If the festival is abroad, you’ll need to book flights and accommodation right away to ensure you don’t miss out!

Shop the festival look

Each year as the festival season approaches, retailers begin stocking the latest festival fashion. That’s why the first step is to fill your backpack with festival favourites so you’ll look great all weekend. Think glitter, transfer tattoos, denim shorts, wellies and of course, plenty of jewellery! You aren’t festival ready until you’re wearing the right jewellery. Each year new trends will emerge, but you cant go wrong with multiple rings, layered bracelets, statement earrings or even a body necklace.

Pack the essentials

Now you’ve got the perfect outfit for each day, it’s vital to remember to put the other essentials in your backpack. Just because you’ll be living in a tent for four days, it doesn’t mean you can totally bypass personal hygiene. The key to survival at any festival is dry shampoo, a big pack of baby wipes, deodorant and of course, don’t forget your toothbrush!

Be prepared for all weathers

You never know what the Great British weather has in store for you, so you need to be prepared for all eventualities. Make sure to pack suncream in case it gets hot. The last thing you want is to get sunstroke or spend your weekend with lobster-red skin (it doesn’t look good in your Instagram photos). But you should also pack a rain coat and maybe even an umbrella if you’ve got room, just to make sure the rain doesn’t dampen your spirit.

Make sure you bring (and drink) plenty of water

While there is often restrictions on the food and drink you can take into a festival, and particularly into the arena where the bands will be playing, you will be allowed to take in sealed bottles of water. If you can’t take it in, it’s likely that they’ll be water stations or that you’ll be able to ask for cups of water from food and drink stands. So make sure you have plenty of liquid, especially if it’s going to be a hot weekend.

And don’t fall into the trap of drinking nothing but beer, this will only leave you feeling unwell and drained by day two. It’s OK and expected that you’ll have a few drinks, but make sure you rehydrate with plenty of water in between. This will keep you feeling fresh and festival ready all weekend.

Buy a programme

It can often feel like an additional cost you don’t want to make, but buying the programmes and itineraries will stop you from missing out on any of your favourite bands. If you’re with a group of friends you can always share these, but it’s a good idea to make sure you have a few amongst you. This will help you plan out your days, when to get to the arena and who you want to see. The last thing you want is to pay all that money for your weekend, only to miss out on the acts you really wanted to see.

Agree on a meeting point

Though it’s easier nowadays with portable charging banks and phone charging stations, phone batteries don’t always last long when you’re snapping pictures for Instagram all day! As such, it’s a good idea to agree on a meeting place with all your friends just in case you get separated and can’t get hold of each other. Particularly because signal can be bad at these events and you don’t want to spend the whole day wondering around by yourself trying to find someone you know.

Be savvy with your money

Festivals can be expensive! By the time you’ve bought your ticket, paid for transportation and bought your killer festival outfits, you could well have paid enough to go on holiday! So it’s a good idea to be savvy with your money while you’re there. If you can take food in with you to your camping ground, make some lunch before going into the music arena. This can save you spending lots of money on food while you’re in there. Alternatively, if you are staying overnight elsewhere, set yourself up with a good breakfast and lunch before your day at the festival begins.

Keep your belongings with you

Don’t leave your phone or wallet in your tent while you’re not there. It’s a good idea not to take anything too valuable to a festival with you as sadly you never know what might happen. Get yourself a small side bag or a jacket with deep zip-up pockets, so you can keep your phone and wallet close by at all times, and try to avoid taking too much money with you in the first place. It’s likely they’ll be ATMs in the festival so you can draw out cash if you need to, or just stick to using your card as most places will accept this form of payment nowadays.

Are you ready for the festival season? Hopefully now you will be and you now where to come for your festival fashion jewellery!

10 Celebrity Fashion Trends To Look Out For This Year

 

Celebrity Style

Do you want to channel your inner Kylie (Jenner that is)? Or perhaps queen Bey is more your style? If you’re looking for the hottest trends this year, then look no further than your favourite celebrities. These celebs really know how to set trends and dress to impress, so if you want to inject a little more style into your wardrobe, then it could be time to look to the stars! That’s why we’ve put together a guide of 10 celebrity fashion trends you need to look out for this year.

1. Choose some statement trousers

Wide leg trousers are this years must-have trend, especially with summer just around the corner. Catwalks around the world have been graced with the likes of celebrity models like Kendall Jenner rocking the wide leg look. And this style is so versatile, you can choose light floral trousers for a casual day out or go bold in the evening with a colourful pair of wide leg trousers that will really make a statement.

2. Make it personal with jewellery

Personalised jewellery exploded onto the scene back in the 90s and doesn’t appear to be slowing down any time soon. This trend has taken off with a huge number of celebrities who have chosen to wear their name with pride, Kanye West, Rihanna and Taylor Swift to name just a few!

But it doesn’t just have to be your name you choose, stars like Ryan Reynolds have be seen wearing a necklace with his beloved dogs name engraved on the front. So if you want to follow the personalised jewellery trend you could opt for your name, a special date, the name of a loved one or even a location that’s close to your heart.

3. 90s nostalgia is at it again

Our 90s nostalgia is back in a big way this year as tie-dye clothing is making a comeback! No longer is this the signature style of ageing hippies and university art lecturers. In fact, tie-dye has been given a modern update and has been a big hit on the runways in recent months. Huge names like Justin Bieber have been seen out and about rocking this look and the trend is only set to become more popular throughout the year.

4. Pick warm shades this summer

Terracotta shades are going to be the warm colours of summer that we’re after, think rusty reds, oranges and deep mustard shades. Whether you’ve chosen a deep red cocktail dress or a delciate orange satin jacket, this trend is set to be big amongst the celebrity crowd this year, hopefully signalling the way for a long hot summer.

5. Say it like a soldier

Chunky footwear has become more popular in recent months with the emergence of platform trainers and sliders, but now it’s all about the chunky combat boots. In fact, model Gigi Hadid was recently spotted out and about pairing her combat boots with a laid back look of track suit bottoms and a sweatshirt. And there’s nothing like a solid pair of combat boots to see you through the colder months, so these could be the perfect addition to your winter wardrobe.

6. Discover a contrast in shades

There’s a contrast in sunglass trends this year and while thinner cat eye sunnies are still a big hit, you’ll also be seeing oversized square sunglasses hitting the shelves of your favourite high street stores. And when it comes to accessorising, no one does it like our girl Ri Ri and this season she’s been sporting chunky square sunglasses on her trip to NYC. So whether you go big or small, you’ll find the perfect sunnies to suit your style this year.

7. A modern twist on a timeless classic

Kitten heels are a timeless classic, they are elegant and demure. But this year they’ve been given a bold update that you’re feet are going to love. Small heels in vibrant hues is what it’s all about in 2019, just ask super model Karlie Kloss (oh we wish we could!) who’s been rocking the sleek city style, complete with fiery red kitten heels.

8. Make them green with envy

We’ve already discussed the warmer hues of summer, but another key colour this year is going to be bright green. Yep, you heard that right! You can highlight your outfit of the day like actress Priyanka Chopra by adding a hint of electric green to it. Whether this is your handbag, the lining on your jacket or your shoes, you can make your outfit really pop just by adding a touch of bright green.

9. Opt for a softer suit

Interestingly, tuxedos have ruled the runway for spring/summer 2019. But while we might not always find the right occasion to pull off a tuxedo, elegant suiting is also on-trend this year. Think power suits like those worn by Oprah or Michelle Obama, only this year it’s all about creating a sharper silhouette and side stepping the traditional pant suit. This has seen trends moving away from popular midi styles and instead pairing tailored trousers with shirts and belts, to create beautiful look that’s just a bit softer than a full suit.

10. Complete your look with an extra long blazer

Finally, on a similar note to the elegant suiting above, extra long blazers are also here for creating the perfect silhouette. Take inspiration from the likes of Naomi Campbell, who uses the long blazer to streamline her figure. Not only this, but these blazers can add the perfect finish to any outfit, by adding a touch of elegance.

Are you ready to channel your inner celebrity? While we may not always be able to afford the labels they’re wearing, celebrity trends make way for beautiful replicas in your favourite high street stores. So if you’re looking to update your style right now, take inspiration from your favourite stars and you’ll create a wardrobe that even Beyonce would be proud of.

How To Accessorise On Your Holidays

Holiday Accessories

Do you want to be a trend setting jet setter this year? It’s always exciting to plan out your holiday outfits before you go, especially if you’re trying not to cram too much into your suitcase (we know, it’s hard!). But whether you’ve booked up a beach holiday, weekend city break or an adventure trip of a lifetime, you want to rock the perfect look while you’re away!

That’s why we’ve put together a handy guide to help you choose the right accessories for your trip. No matter where in the world you go, we’ve got you covered. Check out our guide below for our advice on how to accessorise on your holidays.

Accessorising for: The airport

Before the plane even takes off, you can be setting the tone for your holiday look. To travel in style and accessories like a pro, you first need to choose the perfect bag to take away with you. The size of which will depend on how long you’re going away for, but you can opt for a beautiful weekend bag or a stylish wheel suitcase to kick start your holiday style!

Next, you can upgrade your airport outfit with a look that’s both comfortable and cool. Think oversized jumpers or sweatshirts with leggings or tracksuits for comfort. Then pair this with some classy but classic studs (you don’t want anything too big or irritating when you’re travelling) and dainty bracelets. Finally, throw your hair up in a messy bun and finish the look with some great shades and a stretch bracelet that’s easy to remove when going through security. You are now officially rocking that stylish airport look!

Accessorising for: A sunny beach break

Perhaps one of our favourite holidays, the sunny beach break is always a welcome change from the daily grind and it’s always great filling our summer wardrobes with beach essentials. So if you’re heading off to sunny shores this year, you’ll want to pack the perfect accessories for your trip.

Though not an accessory, it is of course also vital that you pack your suncream – lobster red skin is not a look you want to be wearing! But if you feel you could use some more protection, you can always cover up with a light scarf or sarong, or alternatively a thin shirt will keep you looking cool and shaded.

In terms of your style, the beach break is your perfect chance to rock your linen trousers or your favourite summer dress. Choose white or light coloured items to really show off your tan! You can then accessorise your look by adding some signature shades (also perfect for keeping the sun out your eyes as you relax on your desk chair, book in hand) and a beautiful floppy hat.

Beach breaks are all about the cool and casual look, so match your bikini with a colourful kaftan and choose some stand out sandals to go with it. Shells, beads or gemstone embellished sandals always look great. Alternatively, make a statement with some gladiator sandals instead.

Plus, straw bags and cute totes are perfect for carrying your belongings to the beach, but also for completing your look. And don’t forget, your beach towel counts as an accessory too, so choose a cute print towel to take with you, if it features ice lollies, mermaids or cocktails – even better!

Accessorising for: A weekend city stay

If you’re going on a city break, this is your perfect chance to rock city chic, somewhere close to the sea like Barcelona is perfect for this look, but you also want to make sure you’re prepared for busy days exploring and soaking up the culture. Keep it cool and comfy with trainers, or sandals if the weather is a little warmer. Just make sure that whatever you wear on your feet they aren’t going to rub or make your feet ache while you’re walking (because you’ll probably be doing a lot of exploring!).

Keep your outfits simple and stylish, then dress these up with statement jewellery. Wearing multiple rings and layered jewellery is very in right now, so choose bright and happy colours to pair with your skinny jeans or summer dress.

However if your chosen city is on the chilly side this time of year, choose a stylish trench or crepe coat to keep you warm. If it’s really cold, throw on a scarf to complete the look. But make sure you’ve got something sensible underneath for when you’re ducking in and out of local eateries, bars and museums.

Accessorising for: An adventure holiday

Whether you’re climbing up a mountain, skiing or cycling, adventure holidays call for a no fuss and practical style. But this doesn’t mean you can’t also accessorise. Choose a comfortable set of hiking boots or training, or complete your skiing style with a great set of goggles and an on-trend ski suit.

You’ll probably be on the move a lot, so sandals and a summer dress just aren’t going to cut it! Pair your favourite denims with a lightweight jacket so you’re prepared for every eventuality. And wrap it all up in the perfect bag! Whether that’s a new wheel suitcase or a cute backpack for scaling a mountain. It’s all about creating effortless but practical style.

Accessorising for: A dreamy cruise

If you’re heading off on a cruise, you’ll probably be stopping at a number of different destinations along the way, so you may also want incorporate some of the accessory tips from our beach or city break sections too (depending on where you’re stopping).

But when you’re cruising around a good bag is going to be your best friend. You’ll want your belongings to be easily accessible as you get on and off the boat. And you’ll certainly want your camera to hand for all the photo opportunities! So choose a stylish tote, backpack or even a small side bag if you’re not carrying too much. But remember to leave enough room for a bottle of water and some suncream.

And what better time to embrace nautical-inspired accessories than when you’re on a boat. Think knots and chains, anchors, puka shells and of course blue and white stripy tops and dresses.

10 Easter Gift Ideas (That Aren’t Egg Related)

Easter Gift Ideas

I’m sure we can all agree, that for some unknown reason Easter egg chocolate really does taste better than a regular bar! But by the time you’ve finished your second or even your first egg, the feeling of guilt begins to set in. That’s why many choose to take a different approach to Easter gifts, instead opting for presents that aren’t egg related.

So if you’re looking for the perfect present for your loved one this year, we’re here to help! Below is a list of the top 10 unique gift ideas that can help to cut down on the post-Easter chocolate overload and still bring them joy!

Bring a touch of spring into their home

We celebrate Easter in the spring, the season when the sun begins to shine, the weather starts to warm up and flowers begin to grow. With so many beautiful bouquets available at this time, flowers could be the perfect gift for your loved one. Alternatively, if they’re green fingered and love tending to their garden, why not consider buying them a beautiful new planter and some seeds so they can grow their own!

Get them something personal

You can never go wrong with jewellery, especially when you add the personal touch. Whether you choose a necklace, bracelet, ring or cufflinks, there are so many options available to you, especially online. A number of retailers offer personalisation on all our jewellery, so choose the style you want and get in touch with them to add your own message of love. You could even opt to have a bracelet or necklace that says their name, or even just a piece of jewellery that contains their initials. We all love the personal touch and this is a gift that really shows you care.

Buy them their favourite tipple

Craft alcohol is becoming increasingly popular right now, especially with the rise in flavoured spirits. So why not treat your loved one to their favourite tipple or get them something they’ve never tried before. From a refreshing gin on a spring day, to a delicious craft ale with dinner, you can find them a bottle (or two) you know they’ll love.

Put your heart into a handmade hamper

Give a gift that’s truly special by creating your own handmade hamper. This way you can carefully pick the contents and fill your basket with all the items you know they love. You might even choose to theme your hamper by selecting a range of cosmetics, foods, drinks or crafts, depending on their tastes. The time you put into this gift really shows how well you know them and how much you care – a much better idea than your average Easter egg!

The gift of light

Bring a little light to the dark evenings with beautifully crafted candles. There are so many options available to you, from scented Yankee jars, to intricate hand carved candles, you’ll find the perfect choice for your loved one. You might even want to select them a delicate candle holder to match. You’ll have your pick of ceramic, wooden, glass or metal holders in a huge variety. It’s just about finding the right candle to compliment their style.

For the coffee lovers in your life

Does your loved one often find themselves hosting afternoon coffee breaks? Or perhaps they’re always dashing out the door to work, coffee in hand. Gift them with a personalised, funny or charming new mug. Alternatively, as we continue to fight the plastic battle, more companies are producing beautiful and environmentally friendly reusable flasks for having your tea or coffee on the go. This gift is not only practical, but they’ll feel happy in the knowledge they’re doing their bit for the planet!

Treat them to some luxury

Why not give a gift that keeps on giving. Treat your loved one to some of their favourite cosmetics or products to help them unwind and pamper themselves. You might choose luxurious bubble baths, shower cremes, or bath salts – all things we love to receive, but don’t always like to buy for ourselves. So these can make the perfect gifts for Easter! Not to mention as the weather heats up and we spend more time outside, we like to take better care of our skin for that sunny glow, so moisturisers and body scrubs will also go down a treat.

The perfect gift for bookworms

Nothing is nicer than sitting in the garden or your local park on a sunny spring day and enjoying a great book. So if you’ve got a book lover amongst you, why not buy them the latest release from their favourite author. You could also turn to the internet for this seasons best seller list and perhaps treat them to a great read they may not have otherwise considered.

Compliment their flowers

Do they always have fresh bouquets dotted around the house? Get them a beautiful new vase they’ll want to put in pride of place. Keep it simple and elegant with clear glass, or go bright and bold with hand painted vases. Whatever you choose, try to match their style or the theme of their home, you could even buy them a beautiful bunch of spring flowers to go in their new Easter vase!

Something for the kitchen

A chocolate egg lasts a day (if you’re lucky) but something new for the kitchen can last for years! If your loved one is a keen chef, consider some new baking equipment. Or perhaps they’re a tea lover? A new tea set or tea cosy will always go down well. For those who love to host, beautiful table clothes can spice up any dinning room. You could even get the place setting to match.

Or perhaps you want to stick with the Easter theme? There are a selection of beautiful aprons out there featuring chicks, ducks or bunnies in beautiful meadows – perfect for those who are a bit messier in the kitchen. Alternatively, you can opt for the more comical novelty aprons if that’s more their style.

An Essential Guide To Accessorising For Men

Men's Style

Accessories are the perfect way to complete any outfit, but understanding what and how to wear these as a man can be tricky! From practical belts, to eye-catching watches there are so many options available to you – and these are always changing with the seasons.

But you don’t have to buy a huge selection of accessories and spend hours searching through your draws for the perfect match. When you know what works for you it’s easy to select a handful that will compliment your every mood and outfit. But where should you start? If you’re looking to become a pro when it comes to accessorising, check out our essential guide below.

Accessorise with the seasons

Wrap up warm in the cold winter and dress it down during the warmer summer months; they key to accessorising is moving with the seasons. On a cold day, add a touch of elegance to your outfit with a scarf – both practical and good looking. You can also keep yourself snug and stylish with a woolly hat. Plus, the best thing about hats is that they’re so versatile, so you can go woolly for winter and sports caps for the summer. Just make sure that whatever you wear, it compliments your entire outfit.

Sometimes less is more

Jewellery can be trickier to pull off as a man and that’s why you need to get it right. The key to wearing this type of accessory is to keep it simple and elegant, don’t choose anything too big or ‘blingy’. If you want to wear a necklace, choose something understated with a small chain. This is the key to ultimate sophistication.

This is also true for bracelets, these can be a powerful look for any guy. Get it right and you’ll look like a man of good taste. But again, you want to keep it understated choosing either a thin leather strap  or a small chain – you could even go for something customised to let your personality show through.

Either way, any jewellery you choose must be a good fit and match your skin tone. Also be sure it’s made with proper material. Cheap jewellery can be unforgiving, even leaving its mark on your skin.

Choose practical accessories

Your accessories don’t just have to be about looking good, they can also serve a practical purpose. Bags and belts are the perfect examples of this. When selecting a belt there are two golden rules you need to follow. Firstly, make sure it fits and you haven’t made any of your own holes. If you need a new hole in your belt, have it done professionally. Secondly, make sure your belt compliments your shoes.

Next up is your bag. You don’t need to have a huge collection of bags, but this is an accessory that really can complete an outfit and serve a purpose. Whether you go for a stylish weekend bag, a backpack or a satchel, choose high quality and sophisticated pieces. Neutral colours can be more versatile, so it’s wise to avoid bold colours or patterns – unless you want to make a statement that is!

Always look cool

If you need glasses, this is not something you can avoid unless you choose to wear contacts every day. When selecting the right glasses you need to take the shape of your face into consideration. Bold, black frames are always a winner as these are simple but classy. But ultimately, when trying on glasses you need to choose a pair that feel right for you.

Sunglasses are also a must-have accessory. These add instant confidence and a sense of mystery to any man. Plus they’re such a simple way to add sophistication and complete any outfit. Not to mention they’re necessary when it’s sunny outside!

Keep it timeless

There are some accessories for men that have stood the test of time. Having a strong collection of ties can help you to spice up any shirt or suit. Keep it cool and classic with just one colour, or add some texture with patterned materials. If you wear a tie to work every day, it’s nice to have a selection to choose from instead of wearing the same thing all the time.

And then of course there’s the timeless timepiece. Step your outfit up a notch with a great watch. Whether it’s a Rolex or a Casio, finding the right watch to compliment your style is absolutely key.

The Ulimate Guide To Being An Awesome Bridesmaid

Have you been asked to be a bridesmaid in a friend or close relative’s wedding? Congratulations! It’s quite an honour that someone thinks so highly of you. Just know that this isn’t something you can just show up to and hope for the best. There is effort involved. Being a bridesmaid comes with a lot of responsibilities with you being in charge of many things. Fortunately for you, we are going to share with you the ultimate guide to being the best bridesmaid you can be.

Always put the bride first

As a bridesmaid, your loyalty is to the bride. You will need to be there for her and help her with some of the most important decisions she will make for her special day. Even if you don’t agree with her style or the decisions she makes, remember that your loyalty is to her. It’s your job to ensure she feels good about herself and her decisions.

Understand her needs

Every bride is different, so find out exactly what she wants or needs from you. If she is not clear about her expectations of you, don’t hesitate to ask. The bride might only want you to show up for her wedding or expect you to take on a more active role in the planning of the big day.

Be a team player

There is a high possibility that there will be more than one bridesmaid for the wedding. Ensure that you put on a united front, even if you don’t agree with the other bridesmaid’s suggestions. Remember that you are all there for the same reason, which is to help ensure that the bride’s big day goes well.

If at any time you don’t get along well with the other bridesmaids, you risk ruining the wedding. Although there might be little issues within the group, keep them to yourself. Keep in mind that at the end of the day, you are all there for your best friend.

The bride’s always right (even when she’s wrong)

It’s always good to remember that the wedding is about the bride and not you. If, for instance, she chooses an outfit that you feel is hideous, try and voice your opinion in a nice, subtle manner. If afterwards she still wants you to wear it that is what you should do. If the bride asks you to do something that you wouldn’t do in your wedding then, again it’s best just to get on with it for the sake of the harmony of the day. For most brides, the wedding day is a day they have envisioned since their childhood so it’s important to try not to ruin her big day by not cooperating.

Share your opinion sparingly

There are instances when the bride may seek your opinion about something. While it’s okay to be honest and voice your opinion, if your response causes her distress, back off and ask her what she thinks instead. While it’s important to be open and honest with her, a lot of the time the bride is just looking for validation of their own ideas and so often giving them a conflicting opinion won’t achieve anything other than stressing her out.

Choosing the venue

Although some couples may know exactly where they want to hold their wedding, there are those who don’t. As an awesome and dedicated bridesmaid, take an evening or two to discuss the available options and help them to look at what’s available within their budget.

Dress shopping

Trying on wedding dresses is an important part of planning for the big day. Your role as a bridesmaid when choosing a wedding dress is a little tricky. You need to be able to strike a balance between being constructive and putting the bride to be off the dress of her dreams. Take the time to find out beforehand what she has in mind so that you don’t blurt out something hurtful like “lace dresses suck!” when it’s the style she has her heart set on.

Planning the hen do

This is the fun part of the whole wedding preparation process. It gives you a chance to blow off a bit of steam from all the planning. Although it’s usually the bridesmaids’ job to plan a wild night out with the girls, we highly recommend that you get some inspiration from the bride. Does she want you to go all out on a trip of a lifetime to Las Vegas or we should prefer an intimate, low-key event? Once again, it’s important to plan the hen she would love, not what you want to do. That said, don’t limit your imagination when planning a hen do as there is no right or wrong as long as the bride gets the send-off she deserves.

Have a wedding budget

You should know that being a bridesmaid will most likely cost you money. From the dress, shoes, bag, hair and makeup, the hen do and bridal showers, it all costs money. It’s a good idea to find out early on what costs the bride and groom are willing to pay for and what costs they expect you to cover yourself.

Give her a gift

It’s a nice touch to give the bride a gift the night before or morning of the wedding and it might just notch you up from a good bridesmaid to an awesome one! Get her something personal that shows her how much you care about her and how honoured you are to be part of her big day. A wedding bouquet charm or personalised bracelet would be the ideal gift that would mean the world to her.

Practice on your speech

If you are going to make a speech, doing some practice helps as it ensures that you don’t spend the entire time staring down at your notes. There will likely be lots of speeches to get through so it’s always a good idea to keep it relatively short and light hearted. Try to part with some words of advice, and wish the newlyweds a long and happy marriage.

Finally, the wedding ceremony is the ultimate party and you are privileged to be a big part of it. So dance, laugh, mingle and enjoy the day. If you have you carried off your bridesmaid’s duties to a tee then you’ll have earned it!

Use these tips to help your best friend get the perfect wedding day by providing her with the support that she deserves.

 

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