INSPIRE ME

Sparkles, soft hues, sherbet coloured blooms…
inspire me july 16 blog
(all images via my pinterest page where original sources can be found)

YOUR FAVOURITE DESIGNERS ARE NOW ON SALE!

winter header picIt’s not even the middle of winter and already the sales have begun! For someone that can make the most menial excuse to purchase seem extremely justifiable, you can imagine when I see a serious sale price, I convince myself I am actually saving money.

I know sales from your favourite designers can lead even the most sane of us to act like a crazy person, so earlier this year I wrote a Fashion 101: How To Shop a Sale guide to help.

Here’s a few of my favourite designer threads already on sale, more top brands will follow suit in the coming weeks. The items I have chosen are either timeless and will be sought after winter after winter, or they are trans-seasonal stunners that will work in your wardrobe year round. Now they may go even cheaper, but you risk missing out on them all together, such is the gamble of the designer sale season!

Juliette Hogan Roll Neck Sweater, was $459 now $359.
w.sale juliette hogan sweater
Twenty Seven Names Clairmont Coat, was $550 now $385.
w.sale 27names coat
Chaos & Harmony Momento Boots, was $339 now $203
w.sale chaos & harmony Momento
C&M Cape Cod Cardi from Sisters, was $359 now $251
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Twenty Seven Names Stripe Dress, was $270 now $135
w.sale 27 names dress

DREAMS ARE FREE

Just because I don’t have the bank balance to buy everything I fall in love with, a girl can still window shop right! Here’s what I’ve been dreaming would suddenly appear in my life…

Two Janes Wishlist June 13

Shades of black, white, dark navy and grey are my go to for my winter wardrobe. Country Road has 25% until midnight tonight, so this grey sweater and cute beanie are like every item on sale, a lot easier to justify! The dark navy slim line coat from ASOS would give a lift to my otherwise monochrome daily looks. Dark navy goes with everything, but is a nice change from a black or grey coat.

I’m already daydreaming about cute baby things, these booties from Superette are so adorable! Although my two year old may find it a little unfair that I stick her in $8 Kmart kicks and the baby gets these flash digs!

And finally on this cold Sunday morning, I could think of nothing better than being cozied up in bed in the gorgeous linen Jaimie Kay Duvet (in my dream I’m still lazing in bed after a sleep in, so far from my 6am wake up call reality!) and checking out some interior inspiration from one of Paperplane’s many amazing books.

DOES YOUR DRESS CODE MATCH YOUR AREA CODE?

Soon a good friend of mine is heading on an amazing trip to Italy and Greece, making me reminisce about my own honeymoon in Greece a few years ago. As I was looking through photos of the trip, I noticed that every outfit I wore mirrored the landscapes palette of white through to varying shades of blue and green. In all honesty I do vividly remember packing for the trip and only taking outfits I thought in my mind suited the ‘honeymooning in Greece’ atheistic I was going for!
final greece 111It got me thinking, have I always matched my outfit to my location? I’ve lived a in several cities around New Zealand, and on reflection my fashion sense has certainly changed too.

When living in Christchurch I certainly felt I dressed a little too over the top at times. The norm felt a little conservative, like people wanted to blend in with the crowd for fear of standing out or getting it wrong. I would sometimes get stared at, and not necessarily in a good way for what I was wearing.

In contrast when I lived in Auckland everyone wanted to stand out. It was quite freeing, I could wear anything I wanted! Of course a lot more emphasis was put on your personal style choices, designer threads were a lot more apparent, the words “who are you wearing” heard often (a little too often for my comfort).

Now living in Papamoa in the Bay of Plenty I find many have mastered the ‘polished casual’ style. Colours often reflect beach side living. There’s certainly less emphasis than Auckland about your appearance, but no judgement if you want to step outside the norm. (Although perhaps I’m just getting older and care less about others opinions!).

Some may say it’s more lifestyle that dictates your look, but when living in Auckland I worked in Sales and Marketing for a clothing designer that was stocked in boutiques throughout New Zealand and very obvious themes emerged each season as orders came in from around the country. In the deep South orders favoured black, dark tones and lots of layers, Christchurch was still quite dark, a little conservative, but with the odd pop of personality and colour, Wellington chose the more dark, edgiest pieces of the collection, the Bay of Plenty was quite casual and didn’t shy away from colour and Auckland wanted everything and a lot of it, showing it’s diversity and willingness to invest heavily in designer threads.

I’d love to know your experiences. Have you noticed a shift in your wardrobe when changing cities, does your dress code match your area code?

BLEEDING HEARTS – CHAOS & HARMONY AW15

c&h 2I first discovered Chaos and Harmony many years ago, but it was a long distance, one sided affair. I would lust after their shoes but never invested in them. That changed last winter when I visited their newly opened store BlakChaos alongside renowned clothing label Blak, in Mount Maunganui. The lust turned to love, and I ended up walking out with not one but two pairs! What struck me most was their ability to create shoes that felt like instant wardrobe classics, but still had a uniqueness and edge to their design to make them feel truly special.

It came as no surprise to me that lead designer and managing director Bec Anderson studied in Italy at the Instituo Europeo di Design, the beautiful quality leathers used and faultless construction of their shoes are hallmarks of Italian design.

c&h brochure

This seasons range Bleeding Hearts was inspired by the captivating work of artist Ruben Ireland, known for his contrast of humanity mixed with abstract conception. The result is a collection that too plays on contrasts, light and dark, strength and softness. Beautiful leathers and gorgeous textures shine in a palette from stark black and white to rich wines and blush pinks.
artist collage

The range has started dropping instore and online already, with injections of new styles throughout March and April. I was lucky enough to be shown some of the samples that aren’t quite in store yet, you can view the full Bleeding Hearts collection here, but below are my favourites…

These Shadowbox ankle boots in white are stunning and beautiful croc leather features around the ankle. I’d feel a little fancy doing the school run in these for sure!
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The Ingrid boots are the absolute perfect everyday heel for winter, comfortable enough to wear all day and a stunning woven leather contrast on the ankle.
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I love the rounded toe on the Allegiance boots and the strap detail gives it the needed edge,(this sample wraps around the ankle three times, but the one in production will wrap around twice) it can also be removed for a more streamlined look. Due April 16.
ch final allegiance
Ahh how hot are these Momento boots!? They are definitely going to be my first purchase this season. The pointed toe, the cracked leather, what’s not to love! Due March 30.
ch final momento
I have been looking for the perfect pair of black pumps for ever, every woman should have at least one pair in their wardrobe. I think I’ve finally found mine in the Rosette. The cut of these shoes is just stunning, the heel height is perfect and the cracked leather gives the needed point of difference to the classic black pump. Due in store today.
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Almost a work of art, the Enlighten heel is captivating. Made from patent leather in the richest pinot coloured hue, these heels are guaranteed to turn heads.
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Chaos and Harmony design for a type of energy in a woman; creative, unique, independent, rather than a specific age group or being heavily focused on trends, allowing their designs to have longevity. Although it’s their stunning aesthetic that catch your eye, it’s the incredible quality of design and construction that will make your investment one you will never regret.

THE NYFW COLLECTION OLIVIA POPE WOULD GO CRAZY FOR

It’s always exciting to look through the collections from New York Fashion Week, even if half of them aren’t wearable (I’m looking at you Kanye). One collection that I would certainly love to fill my closet with and I’m sure Olivia Pope would agree, is Victoria Beckham’s latest offering.

The sophisticated and feminine collection in a neutral palette of cream, taupe, black and navy has won rave reviews from the fashion elite and it’s easy to see why.

If your memory of Victoria Beckham is from the Spice Girl era or as some famous footballers wife, you may be shocked to know she is now a widely respected fashion designer in her own right. Her eponymous label even won Brand of the Year at the 2014 British Fashion Awards, over the likes of Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen.

VB2Of her Fall 2015 Collection Victoria Beckham explained ‘it is not about one theme – but instead thinking about what women really want to wear and how they want their clothes to make them feel.’
‘Familiar shapes have been deconstructed and reworked. Volumes have been subverted, menswear elements re-engineered to fit the female form and twists, spirals, seams and asymmetry interplayed. Fabrics bounce and move, a swing is sculptural, and a more body conscious silhouette emerges…’

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Obviously I would need a serious lifestyle change from housework and toddler swimming classes to justify my new wardrobe, but can’t you just imagine Olivia rocking the hell out of those light ensembles while saving the world and drinking insanely expensive red wine, which incidentally she would never spill on those fancy whites, because well she’s Olivia Pope! (If you don’t watch my favourite show Scandal you will be very confused right now).

FIVE WINTER FASHION PIECES WORTH INVESTING IN

Winter is without a doubt the most stylish season. It’s when fabric, cut and construction shine in exquisite coats, lush knits and the softest leathers. I know with the stunning weather still gracing our days, it’s hard to to believe but the latest winter collections from the country’s best designers are dropping in store now. This is when I like to start planning the few investment pieces I buy each season, like most women I know, I can’t afford to purchase everything I’d like to (not even close!), I have to be very, very choosy. If designer prices are out of reach, consider waiting until around June when they start to go on sale, or search second hand shops and trade me to find your favourite brands at a fraction of full retail, as you are looking for pieces to last years, who cares if its a season or two old. To get your started, here’s five fashion pieces definitely worth the investment.

coat montageYour winter coat will arguably be the one item you wear the most over the cooler months. If you are wanting just one coat to work with every outfit you need to choose a neutral colour like black, dark blue, grey or camel. Choose a classic cut that won’t date in seasons to come, if you choose wisely you should be able to easily still be wearing this coat in five years. Brands that are renowned for their gorgeous coats include Juliette Hogan, Twenty Seven Names, Kate Sylvester, Workshop, Country Road and Witchery. A new coat is on my list to buy this season, here’s a couple of favourites I’ve seen so far…
coat final 27 names 2 Twenty Seven Names Pembroke Coat $750

coat final 27 names Twenty Seven Names Clairmont Coat $550

coat final witchery Witchery Wrap Blanket Coat $450

leather montageLeather Jackets have been a staple of any stylish wardrobe for many years now, and they aren’t going anywhere fast so it’s definitely worth the investment. From the most casual look- think jeans, a tee and converse to a night out in your favourite cocktail dress, a beautifully cut, soft leather jacket is the perfect way to complete your look. I got mine about five years ago from Moochi and it’s still in fantastic condition, in fact I think it’s still their most popular style.
leather jacket final moochiMoochi Piper Jacket $749

leather jacket final witchery Witchery Double Zip Biker $699

knit collageThe difference between a quality knit and a cheap knock off is extremely obvious within the first few wears. A quality knit will feel cosy, soft, stay pill free and keep its shape season after season. Choose a shade that best compliments your skin tone and eye colour, I normally choose greys, blues and greens as they compliment my eyes the most. Brands like Workshop, Juliette Hogan, Kate Sylvester, Witchery and Country Road always do stunning knits. My absolute favourite already is this stunning jersey from Juliette Hogan.
knit final jho 1Juliette Hogan Roll Neck Sweater $459

knit final country roadCountry Road Maxi Cardigan $199

bag montageI haven’t bought a new bag for 8 years and I think it’s time. Deadly Ponies is New Zealand’s best in my eyes, they strike the perfect balance of style, function and quality. Yes they are expensive, however if they last 8 years like mine current one has, the cost per wear is cheap as chips. I’m tossing up between getting another Deadly Ponies bag or one from Kate Of Arcadia. Katie Smith, the woman behind Kate of Arcadia happens be one of the original designers of Deadly Ponies. Other brands that I’ve heard fantastic things about are Saben, Mimco and even Kathryn Wilson has also bought out a great bag this season. If like me you are after just one bag to work everyday, just like a winter coat, choose a neutral shade that will go with every look in your wardrobe, colours like black, dark ink blue and camel would work well.
bag final dp 1 Deadly Ponies Mr Fill & Zip $750

bag final dp 2 Deadly Ponies Mr Fill & Zip $750

bag final loa 1 Kate of Arcadia Mickey $395

bag final koa 2 Kate of Arcadia Manx $525

boots montageThe perfect blend of comfort and style, the best boots will feel like your favourite Converse but give your outfit the needed edge. Last Winter I bought my first pair of Chaos and Harmony flat ankle boots and they were worth every cent. This season I can’t wait to see what they are going to do, other brands that always get it right are Beau Coops, Kathryn Wilson and if you are really wanting to invest a mortgage payment or two check out Anine Bing and Modern Vice.
boots final beau coops Beau Coops Beau5 Ankle Boot $389

kathrynwilson Kathryn Wilson Frankie Boot $379

boots final modern vice Modern Vice Jett Classic Ankle Boots $530

boots final bing 5 Anine Bing Boots $900

One final piece of advice, only invest in quality pieces that speak to your sense of individual style, forget ‘fashion’, forget ‘cool’ – your style is timeless and pieces you love will be worn season after season and make your investment worth every cent.

BE MY VALENTINE

What thoughts does Valentines Day conjure up for you? It seems to be quite a polerising day. Some just love it, a chance to spoil and be spoiled. Others see it as nothing more than a commercial ploy to make us buy more. Me? I simply think it’s the perfect day for me to buy something to treat myself and then explain my shopping to my husband in a way that makes him think I’m doing him a massive favour, spearing him from having to rack his brain about what to get me. Surely a win-win yes?

Here’s what I’m thinking of getting on behalf of my beloved…
vday final

Starting bottom left:
All You Need Is Love print from Paperplane: I LOVE this print, instantly it makes me hum the Beatles classic hit (oh and think of that amazing scene from Love Actually!), the gold foil adds some glamour, you could either frame it in a plain black or white frame, or even use simple black washi tape.

Lindi Kingi Bracelets: I can’t get enough of Lindi Kingi’s designs, and this triple cream Howlite and gold bracelet is the perfect arm candy.

Lonely Lingerie: For you girls who don’t know, this is the beautiful lingerie line by the talented designers of Lonely Hearts. My pick is the Bonnie underwire bra and brief set, so damn pretty.

Adore from Collected: Adore is a beautiful hard-cover book filled with colourful interiors that would look gorgeous on any coffee table (and yes that’s important, I’m totally judging a book by its cover).

Fine Rings from Kirstin Ash: The best fine rings in the biz, there are so many gorgeous designs in her range, she has also recently bought out some knuckle rings that are on my wish list.

Lucky me, he totally nailed it this year don’t you think!

KHAKI: THE NEW NEUTRAL

My wardrobe is full of neutrals – black, white, grey and denim, but I’m thinking of making them make space for a new friend. Mr Khaki. So understated, yet stylish. I think he’ll fit right in with all my usual favs.

I’ve already got a pair of khaki skinny jeans, they were perfect last winter with ankle boots, striped tee and my leather jacket and this summer I’ve been wearing them cuffed with a loose tee and Havaianas. Next on my list is definitely a slouchy khaki jacket, the perfect trans-seasonal piece, and perhaps some boyfriend style khaki pants. To ensure you don’t end up looking more army cadet than cool, skip the camo and stick to plain khaki.

Here’s some inspiration on how to work khaki into you wardrobe…
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All images are from my fashion pinterest page.

MY STYLE: IN TEN MINUTES

I’ve been asked by lovely readers what my normal morning style routine is, I was going to call this post from bed to ‘not bad’ in ten minutes which is more accurate but it didn’t have the same ring to it!

I don’t enjoy copious amounts of uninterrupted time to style my hair just right, try on several fabulous outfits before settling on the perfect look and then primping my face with every primer, contour and highlighter on the market, what woman does?!. My morning reality looks a little closer to ten minutes of making myself look decent while my two year old draws over herself with my favourite lipstick. What I’ve discovered is with a little plan, it really is achievable to leave your house feeling fab in just minutes.

THE OUTFIT
Normally woman waste so much time just choosing something to wear, gazing into their wardrobe seeing nothing inspiring. If you followed my guide to how to give your wardrobe a makeover, you would have found that choosing an outfit each day is now easy, because all your favourite, go to pieces are laid out in an organised way. For me it’s more often than not denim, a tee and casual comfy shoes, in summer that means my trusty Havaiana’s.
aa tenminute styleHAIR & MAKEUP
Blow drying and waving with a GHD is my preferred method to style my hair, but usually I don’t have the time and it’s a case of checking if it looks passable down naturally and if not I chuck it up in a top knot.
10 min style 2My makeup routine is quick and easy. I know it would be quicker to skip makeup all together but to be honest I feel a lot more confident when I do wear it. I got introduced to MAC Cosmetics when I worked in fashion, all our events and photo shoots were done by MAC and I’ve been a loyal fan ever since. Each morning I add concealer under my eyes to combat my usual lack of sleep and cover any blemishes (it’s not right to get both wrinkles and pimples right!?). Next I fill in my eyebrows using MAC Eyebrow Pencil in AC3 and lashings of MAC Mineralize Multi Effect Mascara in Black. Lastly I add subtle blush Estee Lauder in Sensuous Rose and lip gloss finishes the look, my favourite is currently MAC Cremesheen Glass in Deelight, a beautiful natural shade. If I’m feeling a little fancy I add my favourite MAC eyeshadow Sweet Satisfaction, it’s a beautiful shimmery sand colour and really suits blue and green eyes, and then a great little trick to look more refreshed, a little MAC Shroom on the inner corner of my eye. Try it, it really makes your eyes pop. Keep your daily makeup routine in its own wee bag to eliminate the hassle of finding your favourite items. I then throw on my everyday jewellery that works with any outfit I own- Lindi Kingi bracelets and Kirstin Ash rings and finally a spray of my favourite Jo Malone fragrance, English Pear & Freesia.

Just like that ten minutes are up and I no longer feel the need to cringe if I run into someone I know at the supermarket looking like I just rolled out of bed.

10 min style 1 a