Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Pull-on a Con

Overdone in so many ways, they are still a staple in my wardrobe and have been since I was a kid. My first pair were pink high tops and since my teens I have had a pair on the go at all times. They may not get worn all the time, but they are there for lazy weekends.

I am in love with the Marimekko All Stars and would kill for a pair of the Missoni collaboration from last year.  I threw my current pair on the other day and was quickly reminded of why it would be foolish to spend a good bit of cash on a designer pair. The thing with Converse is that they really only seem to come into their own once they’re falling apart and at that point you cannot wear them for much longer.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Liebster Lovin

The lovely Comtesse de Ferveur gave me the Liebster award and I only just noticed because I have been an intermittent interneter this week. The Comtesse has to be one of the most lucky, thrifty shoppers on the planet and if you do not follow her blog, you should do so just to remind yourself that there are still amazing things to be found in charity shops.

This award is for smaller blogs - which at the moment has less 300 followers. I am passing it on to the following three bloggers, all of whom have great blogs that you should definitely visit if you haven't already.

1 - Kit-Cat-Kitty-Cat
2 - Stuff I make, bake and love
3 - The Flavour Junky

I've been a bit lazy this week with my accessories this week and when I did wear them didn't manage to photograph them. So instead I will write a short post on my everyday wares.

I swap between these two pairs of earrings. They are both small sterling silver posts from James Avery that I purchased over 10 years ago while at UT.  I swap between the two sets except for occasions when they get swapped for their more glamorous, dangly cousins. 

One day my best mate, Nez, and I were enjoying gluttony and a sunny day on the balcony of The Cheescake Factory in San Francisco with Tiffany directly across from us on Union Square. I believe a few alcoholic lemonades had been consumed and I took a notion that I wanted something from Tiffany. We finished our lunch and headed across the square, I had seen this particular style before and quite liked it for its simplicity. The ring was overpriced, but it was well worth it for the packaging and the fact that I wear it everyday. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

An heirloom

When I was younger and didn’t have contacts, I used to envy anyone in sunglasses, especially my Grandma Betty. They were always big and usually designer – a lot of them also had fade lenses. When she passed away a few years ago, I asked that a pair of her sunglasses be set aside for me.

My mom put several pairs aside including these beautiful, blue, vintage, polaroid pair. I wore them a good bit the summer after she passed away, even to the Electric Picnic. Then I lost them one night on a Friday evening that begin with drinks before clocking-off time. I was devastated. I thought that maybe I’d left them in a taxi, so rang the carriage office. I tore my room apart, thinking maybe...just maybe...they’d made it home with me. I went to the pub we’d been drinking in and alas…there was no sign of them. I’d lost them forever and was so angry at myself for it.

I began to keep an eye on ebay to see if a similar pair might show up in some vintage overstock. Then one day there was a pair in white and tortoise shell – I contacted the seller and asked if they had any in blue. They said they’d keep an eye out for me. I continued to keep an eye out for me too.

One evening recently, I popped the style number into Google and a lovely seller from Greece on Etsy came up. I started trawling through their offerings and there they were – I actually gasped. I purchased them immediately. It seemed so easy. Until the package arrived and it was a very similar pair, but not the pair I wanted. I contacted the seller and he sent the correct ones straight away.

They arrived last week and while they’re not her actual pair, they’re still inspired by Grandma Betty.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Second Bag Syndrome

Curing 2nd bag syndrome
Curing 2nd bag syndrome by marielmcp featuring vintage tote bags

Most women suffer from second-bag syndrome. On one shoulder is a lovely stylish handbag, which holds one's wallet, make-up, mobile, keys, sunglasses and other necessary items. The second bag, most commonly a cloth shopper, though in some instances may be a plastic carrier bag or backpack, holds items such as work shoes/high heels, lunch, reading/work materials, and/or groceries.

One of the greatest dangers of second bag syndrome is shoulder fatigue – this somes in several forms – you are trying to keep one bag on each shoulder and are holding them in place so that both elbows stick out – this is a hazard to others, not to mention a pain in the elbow. Another danger occurs when, in haste, you throw one of your more necessary primary handbag items into the bottomless pit of a second bag - cue struggling to find ringing mobiles, keys to open doors or even that fiver you swore you had two minutes ago.

I have been suffering from second bag syndrome for sometime. I make my way to work on foot and it is about a 45 minute commute, so good athletic shoes on my feet are a must. I can’t really keep shoes under or in my desk, which means I must carry them to the office with me. I also tend to take my lunch to work because it is healthier for my bank account and waistline.

Last summer I bought a black Ampelmannchen bag in Berlin to use as a second bag. I had previously carried bags that were natural cotton tones and realized these bags get dingy very quickly, so black was a good option. This bag coupled with one of many handbags has been my Monday to Friday burden.

For sometime I skept thinking and saying that I would to treat myself to a lovely bag that was big enough and stylish enough to fit both requirements. An Hermes Birkin? An LV Neverfull? Gucci tote? A girl can dream, but has to get realistic at some point.

Last week I had enough, it was time to sort something out. Plus I think spring/summer is the perfect time to carry an oversized bag of some sort. Plus good patterns are easier to find and carry. The search began…I fell in love with the newspaper Kate Spade one and nearly bought it and had it shipped to my poor mother to ship to me. I decided against this, though am still contemplating asking her for it for my birthday.  DVF has some very cute totes as does Marc by Marc Jacobs, but really I need to watch my pennies. H&M just didn’t have what I was looking for.

I was tired and hungry and had just about given up on Dundrum Town Centre and headed for the Luas. Then I remembered the Cath Kidston shop and was going to grab an apron – I have been going through a major baking phase recently. Instead of grabbing an apron I grabbed the starry shopper shown here. It is the perfect size and is oilcloth, so can withstand rain and dirt and I can carry everything in it. Plus it’s brightly coloured for the summer and was a highly affordable €22. I found the cure for my second-bag syndrome.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Luck of the...

A friend of mine is thoroughly convinced that she will win a sizeable sum in the lottery someday.  I am fairly certain that I won’t – and it’s not a logic-based thing regarding statistics, it’s more that anytime I gamble or enter a giveaway I win a small prize, if anything. An example of this is that I recently won an IrishRail travel card with €10 on it. Not a major win, but still it is something that will be useful to me. Like many a fashionista, my luck seems to come in the form of bargains and finds, which is enough to keep me more than happy.

The necklace pictured here was found and purchased on Ebay a few years ago. I was bored at the office, had a bit of time to kill and just searched vintage costume jewellery. I believe I was on the hunt for a necklace at the time, specifically a long, gold necklace. I saw this, the auction was ending and I 'won' a vintage bone necklace for about €15 with shipping.

I love the fact that it’s weighted to one side. It looks amazing with crew or boat neck tops. I’m wearing it here with a buttoned up navy cardigan and my specs. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


I purchased 3 coats in the winter sales. This should be excessive, but considering winter started in September and the prophetic postman of Donegal is predicting that we will have a white St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland, they were good investments.

Spring is revealing itself, ever so slightly, like a burlesque show in slow motion. There are a few cherry blossoms out and about and we’ve had some amazingly bright days. 

This was my shopping ensemble on Sunday afternoon – hooded duffle coat, fuchsia sunglasses bought in California and vintage Gucci bag.  If it is too cold to take it all off, you may as well show off a few of your best bits.

sunglasses + winter coat = one of my favourite combos

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Something artsy..

I’ve been to Barcelona three times and there are two things that I have wanted to do everytime I’m there, but have failed to accomplish: go to El Xampanyet, a Cava bar, and go to the Miró museum. I love Miró's work, it's whimsical and logical at the same time.

 On my last visit, I was shopping in El Corte Ingles when I spied this number on a wall of costume jewelry. It reminds me of his work. The colour scheme isn’t 100% Miró, but the shapes make me think of his work. I love the colours and the fact that it's oversized. I've worn it here with a black and white striped H&M dress.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Wanton Wantin'

From net-a-porter
I've been wanting a new pair of flats - mainly for wearing on the weekend. I want something more formal than runners, don't want ballerinas and I already have a pair of flat brogues, so this narrows my options down significantly. I think I want loafers/moccasins.

I then saw a girl wearing these lovely skinny flood jeans with a pair of black and white python-print loafers and I began to very actively seek something similar, realising that whatever I buy must have an animal print. This was further cemented by these amazing shoes posted by Kit-Cat-Kitty-Cat - I know they're not flats, but I still want them because they're leopard and would look brilliant with jeans - cropped, boot-cut, light, dark - almost any pair of jeans.

I found my absolute dream pair, not only are they snake-print, but they are yellow/chartreuse. I can see myself wearing them with a pair of black flood-length trousers, a white tea shirt, big black sunglasses and some chunky bracelets. Sadly, they are not a budget-friendly item, or well they're not very friendly to my budget, so I'll just have to dream or keep my eye out for something similar on the high street.