Monday, 9 October 2017

Plus Size Fit and Flare Winter Coat | Simply Be

Winter coat season has always been an exciting time in our family. Since before I can remember, I would have always gotten a good winter coat and as I grew older I found more and more care went into selecting that piece of clothing. Fast forward to recently turning 33, I find I still put as much effort into securing a good winter coat around this time of year. One thing is for sure... there is more choice than ever before - especially on the plus size winter coat front!

The one type of coat I've always been drawn to is a fit and flare style coat, because I'm bigger on the bottom than I am at the top, this shape provides what I want in a coat, neat on top and a nice skimming skirt on bottom. When Simply Be offered to let me choose a winter coat, I went straight to their Premium Fit & Flare Coat and though I did browse through others, I knew this was the exact shape I'd been looking for. 

Simply Be, Plus Size, Fit and Flare, Winter Coat, The Style Guide Blog

This coat spoke to me on a number of levels. 
1. It provided me with the exact shape I'd been looking for in a winter coat.
2. It was versatile - meaning I could use it to throw over a substandard outfit for warmth or to dress it up and similarly, it would add an extra level of class to a dressier outfit, especially come the festive season!
3. It was lined. One thing I have learned through the years is always opt for a lined winter coat, it provides extra warmth and the quality tends to be better. 
4. The colour is beautiful. In some lights it's a dark burgundy, in others there is almost a hint of damson about it. 
5. It's essentially 2 coats in 1. The collar isn't attached to the body of the coat, it comes separately and can be tied using the ribbons around the collar area. Perfect for wearing collarless for a less formal look and for wearing blanket scarfs. Winter is coming...
6. It's something of a classic style, it will work for years to come because no matter what the trends for coats will be in the upcoming years, a hint of vintage fit and flare will always be stylish. 

Simply Be, Plus Size Winter Coat, Faux Fur Collar Coat, Vintage Coat
 Simply Be Collarless Coat, Style Blog, The Style Guide Blog

How to style a collarless coat for Winter, Simply Be, The Style Guide Blog

Ultimately, it's a big decision, choosing the perfect winter coat. We spend a good chunk of our budget on kitting the family out so they're toasty, warm and somewhat stylish. Though I didn't pay for this coat, I paid £90 for my last winter coat and it lasted me over 6 years and that is what you want. I've bought many a fashion coat at £20 and under and the truth is that they barely last the winter. You truly do get what you pay for in this instance and a good coat has to be viewed as an investment piece. 

Above all else, a winter coat has to be WARM! My toes are already starting to feel like ice so it won't be long until we're all cocooned inside toasty coats and scarves!

I kinda can't wait...



*I was kindly sent a winter coat to blog about of which I am very grateful however the contents of this post have been created solely by me. This is not an ad, nor is it sponsored material and there are no affiliate links contained within the post. Thank you for reading!
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Thursday, 14 September 2017

Constellation Print

I have to admit the star trend, when it hit a few years back, never really grabbed me personally. There were some lovely pieces to be found, especially the Simply Be star print maxi dress, but it just wasn't for me. There's a similar trend appearing and I find myself falling ever so hard for it.

Building on a base of star print, we're seeing a new trend emerge in the form of Constellation Print and I am so ready for it! How better to remind ourselves to look to the stars a little more than wearing a celestial print?

Whereas this is a print beginning to appear now, I've a feeling we might see it a lot more on the high street when the winter styles hit the rails - at least I hope we do!

I recently came across some constellation / celestial prints that made my fashion heart flutter. The first that drew a real-life gasp was the Celestial Dress that is coming in October from Collectif London. Blue velvet, with a print to inspire the dreamer in us, I am incredibly excited for this drop.

Constellation Print, Celestial Dress, Collectif London, AW17 style, The Style Guide Blog

Keep an eye on the Collectif London Facebook Page to be the first to know when this lands online. They are hoping for the first week in October so consider this fair warning - I think it will be a fast sell out.

Next, I got a heads up about some Constellation Print dresses in Marks & Spencer, however, the initial dress that was recommended is now out of stock so I won't torture you with that now BUT have a look at some of the other constellation print stock in M&S available at the moment because, hand on heart, there are a few I'd love to see in my wardrobe right now...

Constellation Print, Marks and Spencer, Celestial Print, M&S, The Style Guide Blog, Northern Ireland
Mesh Flared Sleeve Printed Dress / Printed V Neck Flared Sleeve Top / Constellation Print Half Sleeve T Shirt / A Line Midi Skirt /  Printed Tie Side Flared Sleeve Midi Dress

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Friday, 1 September 2017

Hairdressers and Red Hair

Since shunning the coloured dyes, the pinks, the electric reds, and embarking on the journey back to my roots, quite literally, I've found some serious ginger hair issues that have been somewhat tricky to navigate. Firstly, my roots are no longer my own natural colour of ginger anymore because at the grand age of 32 (almost 33) my ginger hair has begun to turn white. Gingers rarely go grey, we go white. With this in mind it has to be understood that colour will bond differently. If you have used box dyes you'll find your hair colour is made up of a build up of colour - sometimes you'll be lucky and get that shade to relatively reflect your own natural colour but it largely may appear patchy and just not in the best of conditions. Added to all of this the lack of natural style ginger / red dyes on the market - both in salon and on shelves - it can be tricky to age somewhat gracefully with red hair. At this stage of my life I passionately want a hair colour that is as close to my natural shade as possible, so I sat down with my hairdresser, Nicolle at Hairoscope, and we discussed options.

The first thing I will advise you to do is to ensure you get your wording just right. There is such a huge spectrum for redheads and if you go into a hairdresser asking for ginger hair... well, let's just say it's best to be as specific as possible. Nicolle advises that the most important part of the process is the consultation, your hairdresser needs to understand what colour of red or ginger you would like to go so don't be afraid to come armed with a photo of your desired colour. This will help narrow down the particular shade, whether it's gold apricot, cinnamon, auburn or cherry... there are a plethora to choose from and each will be starkly different to the others.

We opted to try a mix of a good grey cover base and a copper by Goldwell to achieve a more natural shade of ginger / red this time around and the photos really do speak for themselves.

Red Hair, Before and After, Hairoscope, Coleraine, NI blog, The Style Guide Blog, natural red head style

Nicolle did an amazing job considering what she had on her hands was pretty much just a build up of poorly distributed product and the aforementioned root situation from hell.

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