Category Archives: Fashion

THRIFTY FASHION for summer – Sustainable Style

It’s been a while since I shared some of my thrifty fashion finds. As the weather has been sunny, it has made me start to think about what I’ll be wearing this summer! I make no secret that I love to charity shop, and I’ve had some fabulous purchases recently. You can read more about my charity shopping tips here.

I have not owned a decent pair of denim shorts since the pair I owned as a teenager which I wore until they literally fell to bits! I have been looking to replace them ever since, but I’ve never found a pair which fit quite right. This week I finally found a super pair, which are perfect! They’re The White Company, and I found them in a Cancer Research Shop for around £6!

I think a lot of people shun t-shirts and vests at charity shops as they’re such a cheap thing to buy new. But, I’m buying second hand for environmental reasons, so I’ll happily look through all the things!

Every summer, I wear cardigans to help with the changeable British weather! But sometimes a jacket works with an outfit slightly better. I gave my favourite jacket away last summer, as it didn’t suit me anymore. Imagine my delight when I found a casual Monsoon linen jacket on a 50p rail! It is perfect with a dress or teamed with my new to me denim shorts! It’s so light that it’s almost a shirt, and I love the handkerchief style front, though I may need a brooch to secure it on days when it’s windy!

I’m keeping my eyes peeled for a pair of sandals, I know people have mixed views on second hand shoes, but I have to admit that when I buy them they always look unworn. Often with sale stickers still stuck on them.

Should I pack a Swimsuit or Bikini?

With last week being so sunny, my thoughts have well and truly turned to summer! I couldn’t help but start planning our holidays! Last year we spent our holidays in France and Spain, and the holiday was split between beach and pool. Most days we spent the day at the beach, then ended up having a dip in the pool before dinner. Essentially our holiday packing included plenty of good beach and swimwear!

Swimsuit or a Bikini?

Every year I try to pack practical swimwear for use in the pool and a couple of bikinis to wear at the beach. I used to worry, should I wear a swimsuit or a bikini? But now, I know I need both! I choose both as I like having the versatility of different options to wear. Also, I don’t want to contaminate the pool with sand from the beach!

This year, I’ve already been shopping for swimwear thanks to UK Swimwear. I’ve spent quite a lot of time looking at sports bikinis. I love the Gottex Profile Sport collection, my favourite the Cosmos Bikini would be great for aqua-aerobics too! But I settled on a Speedo Swimsuit, in a brightly coloured pattern which screams summer fun!

The LavaFlow Digital Powerback is a high cut swim suit made in a lightweight fabric which is quick drying. The fit is great, although I must admit it fits a little smaller, so if you’re between sizes I’d go up a size. I love the fit of the suit, the high leg is quite flattering on my thighs and it really does look great on! I will be wearing this to while I swim for fitness not just on holiday!

Why spend on a bikini?

When I was younger I used to gasp at the cost of a bikini, and always look for a cheaper alternative. The problem was the inevitably the bikinis were unlined, un-supportive, and not made to do anymore than look good poolside. Invest in a good, well fitting bikini and you will be comfortable, supported and able to swim in it too! I’m a huge fan of Moontide bikinis, they’ve been my go to brand for many years. They seem to fit my figure well, especially on the bottom! I opted for the Moontide Cruise Versailles Braided Bandeau Bikini as the pattern is striking, and I love a bandeau style!

The bikini top can be worn strapless, or as a halter neck. If you have children who love to cling onto you while you swim, that halter neck strap is essential! The bikini top is comfortable, and generously sized. I think the pattern is so pretty, and it goes well with all my accessories!

So, I’ll be packing both swimsuits and bikinis this summer! I think they are both essential as part of my holiday wardrobe. Do you prefer bikinis or swimsuits?

Buying Leather Shoes? Read this…

Have you ever considered how your leather shoes, or bags are tanned?

You may have heard companies using phrases like “chrome-free” leather. I had no idea until I started to investigate, that chrome may be used in the tanning process of leather. Actually, I had very little clue about how leather is produced at all.

What’s the alternative to chrome?

Vegetable tanning is a “chromium-free” way to tan leather,without using harmful chemicals. The process uses natural tannins found in bark, wood and plants to turn animal skin into leather. Vegetable tanning doesn’t subject workers to high levels of toxic chemicals, and those chemicals are not then carried into the supply chain.

Why don’t all shoe manufacturers use vegetable tanning?

The Vegetable tanning process can apparently take up to 12 months! This long tanning process inevitably has a cost implication when the leather reaches retailer. It also uses more water than chemical methods of tanning. BUT the water is not polluted so when it is put back into a river there is no damage to the environment, unlike with chemical tanning processes where the water is heavily polluted.

I know many people who were shocked by the Stacey Dooley Investigates programme on fashion last year. It really was an eye opener just how badly the planet is being polluted by our desire for fast, cheap fashion. So we do all need to start thinking about what we are buying.

I think the real beauty of vegetable tanned leather, is each piece is unique. Colours will be very subtly different. So, it’s good for the worker, good for the environment and looks good too!

Another Way…

I joined in with #FreeTheShoes over on Instagram this weekend. A protest organised by shoe manufacturer Po-Zu – who I’m a great fan of. They are appealing this week, during London Fashion Week for more to be done to ensure shoes are made using ethical processes. Po-Zu are going to be 100% Vegan from A/W-19, using sustainable materials such as Pinatex. Having just got my first pair of Pinatex shoes, I think I am prepared the admit that maybe there are great alternatives to leather.

It’s not always easy to know how fashion has been produced, and I think fashion brands have a responsibility to be more transparent. I have to be honest and say it’s kids shoes I really struggle with. I love the Po-Zu Star Wars kids shoes but I really need suggestions of brands who produce school shoes in an eco-friendly way. That’s my research for the week planned…

A Guide to Choosing the Right Shoe Colour for that Special Event

This article is published in partnership with Mediabuzzer


Image source: Unsplash

If you are planning your outfit for the prom, or another equally important social get-together, your choice of shoes will either make or break the look you are trying to create. Of course, your outfit very much depends on the type of event you are going to attend – a prom or a special birthday party, or even a business dinner – and it is advisable to leave your shoe selection until you have decided which dress to wear.

Continue reading A Guide to Choosing the Right Shoe Colour for that Special Event

Star Wars Kids Shoes by Po-Zu Review

Finding ethically produced shoes, and choosing shoes which your child ADORES doesn’t always go hand in hand.

With brands like many main stream brands producing in countries such as China, India and Vietnam you can’t guarantee that children as young as your own aren’t making your shoes. Films such as the True Cost Movie have highlighted the problems of trying to mass produce in order to keep the cost low to the consumer. But at what human cost?

And then, we found these Star Wars Shoes from ethical shoe brand Po-Zu made under license from Lucas Films/Disney, I can please us both! Po-Zu have created a range of styles inspired by iconic Star Wars characters. Styles for both adults and children, and we all adore them!!

Star Wars Styles

The big problem was which style to choose? The Storm Trooper inspired style and the Chewie boot I really loved! However, my son was instantly drawn to the high-top styles. He might only be 6, but he knows what clothes he likes already! Eventually we chose Resistance High Tops.

Continue reading Star Wars Kids Shoes by Po-Zu Review

What is in your luggage?

It’s almost summer holidays! I’m not go through lie, I’m so excited I’ve already started packing! With three children I struggle with my own packing space, so my luggage is packed strategically! I start with a great pair of shoes which I can walk well in. This year Love the Sales have treated me to a new pair of Converse. Super comfortable and so eye catching, they work well with jeans or a skirt! They are perfect for sightseeing in!

Rose gold converse

Continue reading What is in your luggage?

Why Choose Ethical Fashion?

I was amazed to learn that the fashion industry is one of the biggest polluters in the world. This is not just terrible for the environment, it is dire for the workers who are exposed to dangerous chemicals or poor working conditions in order to mass produce fashion. In the UK we throw away a terrible amount of textiles each year. While many feel that their conscience is clear as they’ve taken it to be recycled, be aware that many fabrics can’t be recycled, and much of our unwanted textiles end up in African countries sitting in large bales. We have simply transferred a problem.

Continue reading Why Choose Ethical Fashion?