21 October 2014

Just The Way You Are

“I like you very much. Just as you are." - Mark Darcy, Bridget Jones Diary
I was talking today with my friend about body image.  How we see ourselves, the way in which others words affect us and the ways in which those words can make us change the way in which we strive to look.

If you do not like your body image or even if you are uncomfortable just with certain parts, the slightest comment can wreak havoc on the way you feel about yourself.  The day you go without makeup to work and someone says "You look tired today" or you are wearing a new dress and someone comments "Oh that dress makes you look so much slimmer".

Suddenly that no makeup day sends you running for the makeup and the comment about looking slimmer sends you into a frenzy of "So they think I usually look fat?"

These are things that happen in our day to day lives.  We look at other people, actresses, singers, celebrities in general and think about what amazing lives they must lead.  People fawning over them constantly, getting their hair done, the professional makeup artists, the perfect photographs and think "I wish I had their life".

Today I saw a photograph of Renee Zellweger.  Although she has been in many films: Jerry Maguire, Miss Potter; Chicago; the one film I really associate with her is Bridge Jones and the now iconic image of her in red pajamas.

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It always made me a little sad when after finishing the movie she would then lose the weight and revert to the Hollywood image; but I also think that if that was the way she wanted to look, who was anyone to argue.

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The image I saw of Renee today though made me stop and question just how far women are willing to go in the quest to comply with what society, and in her case, Hollywood, expects us to look like.

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The image we see today looks like a totally different person.  It took me a few minutes to even realise who it was that I was looking at.  She is practically unrecognizable from the person that she was, on the outside at least.  But what about the inside?

I tried to put myself in her shoes.  You don't get a part you really wanted "Sorry Renee, the part went to a younger actress.  You know I have heard about this amazing surgeon....."  "You look tired Renee, you know Botox is amazing?"  

How far do you go before the comments, jibes and barely disguised hints get into your head?  Before you think "Oh a little Botox can't hurt".  A little Botox there, a little filler there and day by day you change; gradually so that you don't notice until one day, your photograph is splayed across the papers with the "Who is this woman".

Isn't it time that we stopped judging each other on how we look.  Isn't time that that we stopped saying "You would amazing if you just did this".

Isn't it time that we take a line from Mark Darcy and say "I like you very much,  Just the way you are".

20 October 2014

New Work Wear

Today I have a new dress to show you which I have recently added to my work wear collection for Autumn/Winter.  The days are drawing in and there is a definate nip in the air which calls for a return to a darker colour palette and warmer fabrics.

This Ann Harvey dress ticks all the boxes for me.  I love the baroque print and at just shy of 42 inches, it hits me just below the knee which is my go to length when choosing a dress.  The dress features a wrap around style top which is brought in a the waist with a silver buckle piece which adds extra detail.  Being fully lined, it is warmer to wear on those colder days.


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I have worn the dress today with some t-bar wedges from +Simply Be and a three strand jet bead necklace.  When the weather turns colder still I will be adding a long line black cardigan and tights.  

The baroque print dress is true to size and is available at Ann Harvey in sizes 18-32 for the price of £45.00.  Today there is a 20% discount code on the site so if you like the dress as much as I do, head over and grab a bargain.

17 October 2014

Bedroom Makeovers for Autumn/Winter



When I get round to sprucing my place up, I often like to start with the bedroom; it's where you start the day, after all, so a beautiful environment to wake up in can only be a good thing! Here's a look at some of this season's trends and ideas for updating your bedroom.

Beds
The bed is a great place to start, especially if yours is feeling a little tired. Most people are aware of the importance of a good night's sleep these days, and a new bed doesn't have to cost the earth. One idea to consider if you're changing colour schemes, leaving you with soft furnishings and other clutter that you don't really want to chuck out, is an ottoman bed. The mattress lifts up to reveal a storage area underneath, useful for extra pillows and the like - or anything else you'd rather not have on public display! Bedstar have a good range with plenty of options in neutral colours.

Colours


Colour scheme choices are particularly important in the bedroom. For some people, relaxed, calming tones make it easier to get to sleep, while others like a more vibrant palette to help them get going in the morning. Mixing the two doesn't often work! You probably don't want to be redecorating every six months, so it's worth taking a tip from the luxury hotel chains if you're in doubt; neutral, calming tones seem to be most popular with those who run businesses based on keeping sleepy customers happy. You can always jazz the room up with colourful pillows, lampshades and so on. Natural fabrics are always popular; Sainsbury's "Indigo" range, new for autumn, includes bedding and soft furnishings in deep but relaxing blues.

Rustic Schemes

If you fancy a warmer, more rustic scheme, that's another way to go this season while staying fashionable. A couple of items of weathered oak furniture - say a chest of drawers and a nightstand - can look wonderful in a rustic themed bedroom. The Cotswold Company have a nice range of oak storage pieces, including small units that'll fit in an alcove. Tartan is looking like a popular theme this season as well, so a blanket or a few cushions can be deployed to give a splash of colour. Terry's Fabrics have ideas for both bold red tartan styles and more neutral, beige toned versions like "Balmoral Rosso".

Ultimately, the bedroom is perhaps the most personal room in the house, and how you choose to decorate it is down to you; but remember that clean, calm, uncluttered design will generally assist with a better night's sleep, whether you go for bright, "morning-person" colours - or the other way!




*In collaboration with Slap Up Media.

16 October 2014

I Feel Good

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You know sometimes when you spend ages getting ready for a night out, an event or even just a blog post, and the reflection in mirror isn't what you hoped? This challenge is for those times when you look in the mirror, no pre planning involved, and think "I look good today". 

We all have our good days and our bad, but this challenge is to record those good days and to remember that confidence, at any size, is beautiful.

I have been playing around with black and white photographs lately as they lean towards the vintage feel that I love.

I asked my friend to take a photograph of me today with a view to this post, a day late, I'm sorry. They say that whenever someone else takes your photograph it shows your emotions more than when you take it yourself and I think that this is true here.


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I felt good when having this photograph taken but looking at it now, I looked tired and stressed; which is exactly how I am feeling.  Life is crap at the moment with various things going on my family life and people close to me that I am very worried about.

I'm trying to keep on with maintaining my blog as it is an escape from what is happening and it still brings me joy.  I will continue to try and do more outfit posts but for the moment, I ask that you bear with me.

Check out the other ladies in the challenge who are hopefully more cheerful!



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