Friday, 13 January 2017

Styled by Kimberley: Winter Blues

January is like the end of a night out when the club lights come back on, calling an end to the party atmosphere, and you're left standing, disheveled, all sweaty hair and sticky shoes. I've overindulged in everything this Christmas and I'm feeling it. After a prolonged bout of sinusitis, my body is tired, my skin is terrible and I'm craving all the beige foods that I really shouldn't eat. Clearly, the antidote to this is to wear an unforgiving body con skirt and cropped jumper?!!
Hear me out though.

Even on years where I've had that 'new year, new me' attitude, New Year bleeds into mid-January before normality settles and I actually undertake my new goals. I'm sure I'm not the only one just counting the days until January is over? I get the winter blues quite badly and I just want to hide under my duvet and wait out these dark days. We sometimes forget that living in Scotland is pretty much the worst for this, with a 9am sunrise and 4pm sunset in January. We're essentially mole people, snuffling around in the dark for six months of the year. The good thing about our seasons it is that come March my mood lifts and I spring into action to annoy everyone with my bubbly early morning chat. Rather than sleep my way to spring, I'd quite like to try to keep an even keel. 
Here are a few things I actually do to shake myself awake:

1.) Live by my Lumie Bodyclock.
The artificial sunrise alarm may seem gimmicky (and expensive) but ohmyword it is brilliant. I've used mine for about 4 years and it's worth every penny. Sometimes I turn the light on in the evening to trick my brain into thinking it's daylight. It helps me avoid the 7pm doze. I'm considering a desk lightbox- has anyone tried one?

2.) Exercise.
Jeez, I hate it. It's always the advice for any mental health issues though, and with good reason. Walking in fresh air- and making the most of any daylight hours you can eek out- is ideal. I also like to do yoga or use my exercise bike the second I walk through my front door.  Otherwise I find myself making excuses and that's me trapped for the evening, slowly slouching down into a lying down position. How did that blanket get there? Might as well close my eyes, just for a second...

3.) Make plans.
Basically, do the opposite of what you feel like doing. By filling my diary with nice things- and people!- the days go faster, I feel productive and I don't have the time to mope around. But I alternate this with evenings of scheduled slobbing around because I recognise that, despite my best efforts, my energy levels are still in conservation mode. I'm pretty bad for overdoing it to burn out point (hello 3-month-long-generic-virus-that-won't-bloody-shift). Scheduling laziness weirdly removes the guilt, and I never find myself cancelling those plans! ;)

4.) Cook.
I only discovered this last year and it was a light bulb moment.  Previously I enjoyed baking sweet treats but I didn't enjoy making meals for other people. Because, pressure. My growing Pinterest boards and international flatmates have really boosted my savoury repertoire. I mean, really my tip is to eat well. But it's January. You're skint. You've been brought up on Scottish comfort food and you just want to snack in front of Netflix. Getting creative in the kitchen has totally changed my outlook. It keeps me healthy, gives me things to do, saves me money, and it's sociable. People like being fed!

5.) Dress up.
When you've had no routine during the holidays and no energy in January, doing your makeup and putting on something nice can feel like such a waste of time, but in the long run it can pep you up all day. I'm not someone who dresses up or wears makeup every day, but I always kick myself later on that I didn't bother. A dash of bright lippie or the addition of bold earrings can psychologically boost you.

Top | Yellow Bubble
Skirt | Topshop
Shoes | Topshop
Earrings | Mica Peet
Bag | Thrifty Little
Glasses | c/o IOLLA

Which brings us nicely to my outfit. I treated myself to this cropped jumper from Yellow Bubble last month and I have been waiting for the opportunity to get it out (read: when the snot cleared). Sorry fashion, but I'm not getting my midriff out in these temperatures like I did for our Yellow Bubble AW16 shoot. I popped a white top underneath, and paired it with my favourite striped pencil skirt. The top is so fuzzy. It's really fun to wear- who could be fatigued with this fluff??


I've gone blue overload on this theme- even down to the flecks in my glasses and the resurrection of my old student beauty trick of matching my eyeshadow to my top. You can have that brilliant/ awful 00s tip for free. Talking of throwbacks, how good is this Little Thrifty upcycled glitter heart bag? It was practically made for me, and Helen bought me it for my birthday. The earrings are from my December wishlist and were a Christmas gift from Ian.

The little things that really lift you are often tied to loved ones.
Thanks to Ian for taking my photographs.

 photo kimberleySignature_zpsf529626b.jpg

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Styled by Helen: Winter Blues

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I have to admit that I'm still struggling to get back into the swing of real life after the festive holidays. Sometimes I enter January full of ideas and energy but this year I'm still waiting for that to hit me. The grey skies and dark nights probably aren't helping. Now that all the fairy lights have been tidied away things are looking a little dull. I keep thinking that adding some bright colour into my outfits might help to cheer things up but I still find myself reaching for the monochrome. It's been a staple look for me throughout winter and I just keep adding more and more of it to my wardrobe.

This jumper was one of my Halloween purchases from last year. As you can see I don't believe that horror themed items are just for October. I paired it with more black for a relaxed Sunday afternoon with friends in Glasgow. The damp weather and chilly temperatures weren't too much of a problem since most of the time was spent in a pub with a wood burner. With that in mind I went for a lightweight jacket and my trusty bobble hat which kept me cosy enough. I did add a little bit of colour to the outfit with my pink trainers. I don't often wear trainers but they do make for great Sunday attire. Comfortable but still pretty weather proof, perfect for a lazy day of ducking out of the drizzle.

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Jacket | Charity Shop
Jumper | H&M
Trousers | New Look
Trainers | Charity Shop
Glasses | c/o Iolla
Necklace | Accessorize
Ring | Bloody Mary Metal
Hat | Tiger

With lots to look forward to in 2017 I'm hoping that the winter blues will soon be banished. First of all I've booked myself some time in the jewellery studio to get creative again. I'm hoping to make this a more regular thing in order to work on my skills and up my jewellery collection at the same time. I've also got flights booked for a holiday in the sun to celebrate (or distract from) the fact I'm turning 30! This is my first holiday abroad (yes you read that right) and I can't wait. Maybe shopping for holiday clothes will encourage me to inject some colour into things.

For now I'm going to finish off the Christmas chocolate and use some of the Lush goodies I've amassed - I'm sure that will get me back on track. How do you fight off the winter blues?

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Friday, 6 January 2017

2016 Outfit Round Up: Kimberley

Life is finally getting back to normal after the festive period (even if I'm still not quite sure what day it is) so that must mean it's time for a 2016 round up! Kimberley's already picked out her favourites of mine so now it's my turn to look through her back catalogue. I always forget just how much blogging we get done in a year and I have to admit that I found it rather tricky to whittle down my top picks.

Kim's 2015 outfits were a mix of casual cool and over the top glitter, a rather excellent combination if you ask me. In 2016 there was still plenty of sparkle but she also embraced some looks that were a step out of her comfort zone with simple colour combinations and less accessories.

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Yellow Bubble
I loved Kim's sports luxe look using this awesome Edinburgh knitwear brand. The stripped back grey and black combination isn't something that Kim usually wears but I think it works really well to create a strong streetwear aesthetic. Plus that cropped jumper is just too good.

Whitepepper
2016 saw the demise of this London brand, which was news that hurt both of us deeply. Seriously, we're still getting over it. This look lets the Whitepepper jumper do all the talking with it's striking monochrome power. The small hints of colour on the lips and bag really pop and add the perfect finishing touches.

Insects
Stripes, leopard print and skinny jeans - this outfit may look rather casual by Kimberley standards but I really enjoy the slight Grease / Pink Lady vibe. It may include a couple items from my wardrobe but that's not why I picked it - Kim wears the whole ensemble beautifully and ties it up with an awesome Sleekit Studio scarf.


Kimberley's always been a fan of vintage clothing but over the past year she's really embraced bygone era's and looked super glamorous in the process. Just check out these dreamy dresses and hairstyles:
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Blogger Brunch
Full length dresses are not something Kim wears very often but looking at this one I don't know why! I am so in love with this patterned number. It looks great with her subtle pink hair (I miss the pink) and the clashing patterned bag.

Vintage Weigh and Pay
This pink and silver look is part first lady, part subtle 60's space babe and I all over love it! Pink always makes me think of Kimberley so to me this outfit is very her, even if it is slightly more paired down than her usual print/glitter/accessoriesed ensembles.

Christmas Party Style with SoS15 
Statement and novelty bags seem to be a running theme with my favourites. As are awesome vintage dresses. This gold one has a lovely sparkle to it and looks super glam with the glitter clutch. When in doubt add more gold! Kim definitely should because looks great on her.


And finally, my favourite of Kimberley's 2016 outfits.... her blog birthday Roller Shakes look!

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It's pink, it's fun, it has pattern AND it features amazing slushie hair! There is just so much to enjoy about this look. The 50s style is so very Kim and the American diner feel fitted perfectly with our birthday theme. Looking at these photos just fills me with fond blogging memories and puts a huge big smile on my face. Surely that's what dressing up is all about!

There you have it, my favourites from Kimberley's outfits: the 2016 ones. Do you agree? Now I'm just left wondering what 2017 will bring to our wardrobes. Here's hoping there's plenty more colour, glitter and awesome independent brands!

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

2016 Outfit Round Up: Helen


Kimberley here! I'm rounding up Helen's outfits, and she's doing mine- something we do every year. This is one of my favourite series of posts. It's just so satisfying to go back through the year's catalogue of posts and really appreciate all the stuff we've done. You can quickly forget photo shoots that you were super excited to share, and it's nice to reflect on the year as a whole. Looking at Helen's outfits, rather than my own, makes this process a lot more comfortable too.

Helen's 2015 wardrobe was all about bold clashing prints. It was so good to see her step out of her comfort zone into more daring looks. I swear, that hair cut changed everything! This year Helen has refined the look a bit, mixing the solid colour blocking that dominated her 2014 photos to include these new prints. A simple but effective device that is a common theme in all my favourites. So, let's take a look:

Summer Tan challenge
We both enjoy a tropical print and this cute little vintage playsuit is just so fun! Even if Helen felt like her tan wasn't as noticeable on her as it should be, she certainly had the summer vibe with this look. Bonus points for the wing tipped sunglasses.

Insects
I really like the unusual colour combo for this outfit. I'd never think to pair turquoise with brown, but Helen has taken the combo from her insect print sweater and amplified it into a colour block. This is Helen's best style trick, and there was plenty more where that came from.

Vintage Weigh and Pay Challenge
This dress is a potential nightmare for styling- look at those 60's browns, pinks and oranges! Helen uses simple modern accessories to keep the look from going to Granny's Curtains (not that I'd disapprove of that, of course).


Tea Green Outfit
A cute and easy look but I like to see different colours on Helen. Blue isn't a usual colour choice for her. Helen's wardrobe is really expanding in colour direction, showing that you can wear a wide spectrum of colours- even if you are pale!

Winter outfit
I've included this outfit because it was a fun but practical outfit. It's important that outfits are actually wearable- seeing British bloggers out in skimpy dresses in December just isn't realistic! The layering of checks and polkadots looks very impressive and put together, but it's a simple styling device.

Chouchou
This was one of our best collabs this year. Although we both styled this Chouchou scarf, I think it was made for Helen- quirky, orange and patterned. I loved this whole photo shoot series. The light was just perfect and the photos were dreamy.

DRUMROLL PLEASE.....


And my 2016 favourite is... Helen's pinafore outfit.

This outfit is the epitome of Helen's personal style. The nod to French chic, the monochrome and red, the hands print followed across the pinafore, bag, jewellery and her own nails. Helen does love a theme!

Choosing my top Helen outfits was quite tough because we had a lot of great collabs and opportunities this year. Our sparkly Isolated Heroes shoot was a great moment, and we both adore the knitwear from Yellow Bubble.

I have also completely discounted the obvious reader favourite- all of out Unlikely Style Icons! These continue to be our most popular posts (especially those Horror ones!), so we think we'll have to give you more of what you want in 2017. Just how much more ridiculous can we get? Watch this space!

 photo kimberleySignature_zpsf529626b.jpg

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Unlikely Style Icon: Mrs Claus

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Only 4 days until Christmas and I'm feeling much more organised than I did previoulsy. I now know what I'm doing on the day and have most of me presents wrapped. Yay! After decorating the flat and watching endless festive films I'm getting into the spirit and am looking forward to catching up with friends and family and having a few days off of work. It sound so good already!

What the run up to the big day obviously needs is another Unlikely Style Icon. Over the past couple of years I've been inspired by trees and snowmen. This year I've opted for the often overlooked Mrs Claus. Maybe not quite as glamorous as Kimberley's tinsel get-up but after the M&S ad I feel like Santa's wife is stepping into the limelight.

If truth be told I mainly picked Mrs Claus because I'd just bought this red jumper and thought it would fit in nicely. I love that the jumper is festive without being covered in seasonal motifs and flashing lights. It's got a bit of sparkle to it but I'll certainly be wearing this long after December is over. I bundled up the festive red by adding my comfy and cosy coat and borrowed this sweet and sparkly hair clip from Kimberley. I added it to my beret because Mrs Claus should have some kind of headwear, don't you think? I kept it causal with some black jeans but added a touch more bling with gold boots and my trusty snowflake necklace -  it's a firm festive favourite. I do enjoy a themed accessory and this one works all through winter!

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Jumper | H&M
Jeans | New Look
Boots | Primark
Necklace | c/o Bonnie Bling
Beret | Tiger
Candy Cane | Alternate Normality
Coat | Charity shop
Glasses | c/o Spex Pistols

Decorating a tree with gift bows is one of the more unusual things I've done for a blog post. There were certainly got a few curious looks from the passers by. Don't worry, they were all removed from the park, we ain't litter bugs here at Wardrobe Conversations. I have had a bit of fun adding more bows in post production. The on site efforts did look a little sad when I was looking through the images. I think I need to work on my set design skills in 2017!

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Whatever you get up to this Christmas, I hope you have a good one!