Tag Archives: Dorothy Perkins

Toe the line

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QUICKIE POST ALERT!

I’m sure you will have noticed that toe-capped shoes and boots are all over the place at the moment and are sure to be an AW ’12 staple!

Trouble is with these sort of trends is that you never know how long they are going to be around for.

Follow my two simple steps on maximising you PPW (pays per wear) out of this particular fashion:

1. Forget expensive shoes (this season) – buy cheap or buy in the sale. You don’t know how long this trend is going to be around for. Buy a cheaper pair; wear them to death. If they’re not in again this time next year, you’ve got your PPW out of them. If they are, then it’s a trend with a bit more longevity – that’s the time to buy a more expensive pair.

2. Don’t bother with kooky colour matches – yes clashing colour toe caps might look cool now, but you may not feel the same about having different coloured toes in six month’s time. Buy dark – navy, grey, brown or black. Less expensive shoes can look cheap in lighter colours. If you must have a different coloured toe, go metallic.

Here are my top five under £30:

5. Leopard flats – £25 at Oasis

4. Brown/bronze heels – £30 at Dorothy Perkins

3.  Black/gold heels – £16 Matalan (also available in this season’s burgundy. At this price, go for it!)

2. Silver toe and heel ballet flats – £29.50 Wallis

1. Black suedette/black patent heels – £24.99 H&M (Also available in red or grey. And supremely comfortable!)

So, adorn your toes for under £30! Do it. x

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Independents day

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Hello friends.

I have fallen in love. With independent labels. Again.

Reasons why independents (indies) are great:

1. Nice different fabrics, prints and colours that you don’t find in your standard high street store.

2. Prices are the same as or not much more than you would pay in somewhere like Toppers or Zara.

3. You can be pretty sure when you wear an item of clothing from an indie that you won’t rock up to a party and find someone else wearing the self-same thing.

Downfalls of the indie:

1. They are often only available in the larger stores, or online (where you have to pay ruddy postage. Twice if they don’t fit.)

2. The smaller the indie, the less range of sizes they will have – S/M M/L or worse still the dreaded ‘One size’. Yuk.

3. They have limited stock, so you don’t really have time to um and ah about whether to get something, as next time you look there might be none left.

The current objects of my affection, namely Ruby Rocks and Louche, seem to manage to avoid these three quite nicely though. The former is available on it’s own website (www.rubyrocks.co.uk) but also at the likes of ASOS and DP; the latter, available at Joy (www.joythestore.com).

Here are the ones wot I ave been looking at recently…

1. Ruby Rocks

Ring-Ring! Hello Ruby Rocks, can I help you? Hello yes, I would like a well cut, lined dress in a funky fabric at a reasonable price please? No problem, here you go. Wow, Ruby, you rock. Thank you.

Check these badboys out:

L-R: Ochre coffee bean print midi dress, £30; Turquoise car print dress, £28; Lemon bird print dress, £26.

I own the first one and have my greedy fashion peepers on the other two as well. And the beauty is…all of these are available online at Dorothy Perkins in their brands section. Well done, Dotty.

2. Louche

The fact that Louche’s main stockist is at a shop called ‘Joy’ is no coincidence. I nearly squealed with delight when I walked in the other day at all their lovely wares. When I say nearly, I mean actually. Eyeball these beauties:

 

L-R: Navy/orange Paloma dress, £50; Square check Zaza dress £45; Multi print Cassidy dress £49; Blue floral Julita dress (as seen in Grazia, apparently) £55.

I also metaphorically dribbled over this mac there too, although it is £75 so you would have to justify in terms of pays-per-wear before getting it:

 

Word to the wise: Louche sizings err on the smaller side, so you might need to size-up from what you might normally buy.

But don’t let that put you off. There are a whole host of wonderful independent brands out there, Ruby Rocks and Louche are just two.

Further your research by checking out Closet, Numph, Soaked in Luxury, And/Or and Dahlia. Quality. Nice. x

Getting fruity

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I loves a quirky print as much as the next girl. Actually that’s a lie, I loves a quirky print much much more than the next girl, like LOADS more.

Birds, animals, flowers, they all are about, but particularly at the moment I’m liking fruit prints.

Cherries, bananas, watermelon, raspberries, pineapples, strawberries, pears and apples. They’re all out there ready to be picked!

So make sure you get at least one of your five a day with my pick of the best,,,

1. Cherry print dress – Coleen Rooney at Very

There we all were thinking that we knew for sure that Coleen Rooney had no taste (or at least no eyes, look who she’s married to) but to my delight, I found this cutie beauty for £49, and it’s summery-er than a jug of Pimms. It is fit, and I want it.

2. Watermelon print vest – MissGuided

MissGuided have made my little eyes water at the sight of this watermelon number. Get down with your bad juicy self in this sheer vest – available in black or white, and all for a purse friendly £14.99. Tuck in.

3. Pineapple print skirt – Yumi at House of Fraser

This pineapple print skirt is not for the faint hearted, but I just love how lovely and summery this is. I’d be keeping it simple with a white vest, tan sandals and layered gold necklaces. The skirt speaks for itself really, saying “hello, I have pineapples on me”. Bottom heavy girls are advised to proceed with caution with this one though. Yumi have a range of clothes with other fruit prints like lemon and apple. Check em out.

4. Apple print top – Select Fashion

This funky apple print reminds me of oldschool Motel clothing, when their USP was kooky fabric designs and not to use as little material as possible. It’s also in my current fave colour and is a ruddy snip at just £8. Available in black/grey and camel/black.

If a full on fruit salad about your person is just too much for you then there are a whole host of nice accessories of the fruity persuasion that you can purchase. As ever, here’s my pick…

Top row, L-R: pear headband, £7 Topshop; Fruit earrings, £6, H&M; Apple neckscarf, £7, Dorothy Perkins; Apple hairband, £7, Accessorize.

Bottom row, L-R: Pineapple fan, £4.50, Accessorize; Pear overnight bag, £39.95, Fruit Tree at Campus Gifts; Fruit charm bracelet, £7.99, Anderson & Webb.

And that’s it. Get fruity. And that’s an order.

Colour crush

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It hasn’t happened for a long time, but I am having a massive colour crush at the moment. Everything I want to buy seems to be in this colour – my mother would call it ‘eau de Nile’ (how very 80s), but essentially it’s a very delicate aquamarine.

To my delight and my credit card’s eternal shame, I’ve gone and bought a couple of bits in this colour already. I realise that pastels are big this spring summer, but there is a destinct risk that I could end up just owning clothes in this colour alone. So to stop me from doing so, I felt I would share some of the lovely bits I’ve seen with you.

Firstly, I actually have bought this, but it’s super cute and I love the bird print on it (kooky animal prints are all over the hangers like a grandma on a gin bottle, so I advise you to get involved.)

This baby is £28 from Dorothy Perkins (who have had a surprisingly awesome spring drop, it has to be said) and I think it will see me through summer very well. I realise that there are many opportunities to make jokes about the fact that the birds are blue tits, but believe me I have made pretty much all of them in my head already, and none of them merit sharing.

Here comes Zara again, doing the pastel-y business with these lovely patent aqua heels for £69.99.

Now, I know that pastel shoes can look very wedding-y, but I would rock these with some black ankle grazers, a metallic top and a tux jacket to mix things up a wee bit to make you more ‘hot mama’ and less ‘mother of the bride’.

Next up is this nostalgia-enducing ballet wrap from Topshop (£36). It quite simply is one of the cutest things I have seen in 2012 (except that pig that has to wear wellies) and I want want want it! ARGH! It takes me back to circa 1992 when I pestered my mother for a ballet wrap cardigan (even though I did tap dancing, but whatever, I wanted one!)

The influx of pastels and prints in the shops means that we’re in for a girlie time in fashion, so make the most of it by teaming it with a floaty dress and some delicate heels (yep, time to ditch the platforms for this baby!)

Last up is this crop shirt from Miss Selfridge. It says ‘hello holiday’ – which is ideal, as I shall buy it for my holiday. Hurrah.

I would avoid the urge to put it with dark denim shorts – you can be too blue, you know. I’d opt for black or beigey tailored shorts and some sandals. Keep it simple peeps.

But what if pastels don’t suit you? You can always add accents with some cool accessories, and if you’re a bit short on cash they can be mighty purse friendly too. Try some of these for your pleasure:

L-R: Barry M nail varnish in Aqua Moon; Blue polka dot studs, £4.50, ASOS; patent pumps, £15.99, New Look; waist belt, £8.00, ASOS.

Blue bliss. x

Lady in (deep) red

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Anyone else noticed how burgundy is having a bit of a moment? It makes me very happy as it is a shade of red that my pale little complexion can handle!

So make like Jessica Rabbit and grab yourself a little red dress! (Dying hair ginger and marrying a cartoon character optional.)

How cute is this Pink Boutique polka shift? This is one for petite girls: anyone with a large bust or a boyish figure will not be left flattered by this baby. Bonus is that it’s only £25 at Dorothy Perkins. Too cute! It was sat right next to this burgundy lace number too – another bargain at £26. Loving you right now, Dorothy Perkins. Last of the shorties is this amazing mesh dress from Warehouse – loving the bodice detail. Christmas party anyone? This is great for pears or boyish figures – skimming hips on one and giving waist detail to the other. Slightly more expensive at £75, but look at the pretty!

Burgundy nails the colour palettes of AW style – it’s going to look great with all the creams and navies and browns that are de rigueur right now. So slap one of these babies with your cuddly knits and thick tights in your day wardrobe.

Nailing the 70s trend, this pussy bow shift is ace (and may well make it into my work wardrobe!) – £60 at Warehouse. Love the dipped hem of this Rare dress at Topshop, and is a bargain at £34. Chunky tights and laced ankle boots will set this off a treat. Finally, this 40s shirt dress from Motel is super cute, and nails the midi trend too. Grab one from motelrocks.com for £52. They’re offering £10 credit when you sign up to the newsletter too – I think Jessica Rabbit would agree that it would be rude not to.

You know how much I love a print, so I had to include these two in the post – I’ve made the images a bit bigger so you can see the detail a bit better. Loving the bird print on this £65 silky little Warehouse dress. Big pants required just in case for that hemline though, I fancy. Finally, what would happen if two of my faves got together and had a secret love child? This leopard print baby is what – the HoF makes sweet sweet love to leopard print and gives us this amazing Maggie and Me dress for just forty of our English pounds.

Enjoy being a lady in (deep) red…x

Wedding guest appearance: mark 2

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So with the wedding only a few weeks away, the hunt is still on to find a nice dress.

Attempts 3 – 5: I am currently loving concessions ranges – and Closet at Dorothy Perkins usually gives me plenty of loveliness in classic shapes, bright prints at reasonable prices. I challenge anyone not to swoon! So off I popped with a friend and tried a host of different dresses, some of which included the following:

I liked the coral pleated dress (£48), but although it looked really nice and I loves a tea dress, I felt it broke rule 4 (too casual). Similarly, the purple fit-and-flare frock (£42) looked lovely, but felt a little bit too worky (thus breaking rule 5). Nightmare.

If I could have found it in the store, I would have tried this retro baby. Pure 50s magic in dress form. This would have called for a pair of leather driving gloves, like these cute heart cut-out ones, £22 from Accessorize. Obviously you could team this with a pair of black courts if you wanted something a bit more subtle, but if not, I think these block heeled bow courts, £29.99 from New Look, would set the whole thing off a treat!

Attempts 6 and 7: Hi-ho, hi-ho, it’s back to Topshop concessions we go. But this time it was the biggie – Topshop’s flagship store at Oxford Circus. And this time I had a friend with me to help. They have a great range of concession labels here including Love, CiCi, Orion, Tara Starlet, Wal G, Dahlia, TFNC and, of course, Traffic People.

I tried on MANY dresses here! I won’t go through them all for fear of you falling asleep into a cup of tea and suffering 2nd degree burns on your nose. BUT here are the best of them.

Normally I dismiss Orion as a) being cut for the shorter lady and b) a wee bit expensive, but in the spirit of trying on the whole shop, I gave these beauties a go:

The first is called Julia and costs £67 – it hit the middle of my thigh in terms of length, but looked really lovely on. The cowl neck sewn into the waistband gave me some killer curves. I loved it very much, and this is definitely on my shortlist. Apologies about the dimensions of the pic of the second one – I had trouble trying to get a picture of the white version. Click the link on the name to see it properly. This dress was called Queenie, and at £76 it was one of the more expensive dresses I tried. Although I loved it on, I didn’t seventy-six-pound love it, and white chiffon felt more like cocktails-on-holiday than autumn-wedding. So, if I’m feeling flush, when I go on hols in September I might treat myself to this, and wear with wooden jewellery and a pair of thong sandals.

I also tried, and dismissed these: Turquoise Eva dress by TFNC (£60, too short!); royal blue frilled dress by CiCi (£45, made me look like I had massive shoulders) and some horrendous orange dress (I can’t remember the brand) with a weird cape bit on the back. Just no.

Onward, dear friends… x

Wedding guest appearance

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Attempt 1: With all my rules in mind, the first dress that I found was this beautiful green number called Ronah by Traffic People in concessions at Topshop. This dress is also available from aspirestyle.co.uk at £59. Unfortunately, it’s not made for big friendly giants like me: the waistband fell on my ribcage making me look like a green plank, but would be perfect for more petite girls. That high neckline will also make smaller boobs look bigger and the cap sleeves will broaden shoulders to balance any pear shapes too. I would have put it with metalic shoes and accessories – like these badboys: Skater Su from Dune at £80; or gone for these slightly kookier tribal lovelies to add a few other colours to the outfit:  Lindemuth from Aldo at £60.

Attempts 2 and 3: After failing miserably with attempt 1, and a lot of online searching (I loves the research) I hit the streets again, and happened upon Mango. Aside from the wedding search, I dribbled a little on sight of their killer AW drop: there are many new season dresses and tops that I am lusting after! (Repeat after me: credit cards are for emergencies, credit cards are for emergencies!) I tried on this navy slinky cowl neck number for £69.90, and a cute black/nude mesh and lace cocktail dress for £59.90.

The navy jobby (also available in a colour I like to call ‘slutty red’) looks faintly like a replica of that one that Kate Middleton wore when she got engaged! It’s super clingy though, so unless you want to go commando, some Spanx will definitely be in order.

The mesh cocktail dress was also really lovely – plus came with a free belt; excellent. It fitted me perfectly, and was a very beautiful dress – ideal with pearls and nude accessories BUT I thought the sheerness of the fabric would mean I’d have to cover its loveliness up with a cardy. (Did I mention the wedding is in Ireland?) And was also very similar to a skirt/top combo I had worn at a wedding last year.

BUT if I had bought it I may have paired it with these lacy courts from Barratts at £40 (if feeling matchy-matchy); these nude flowery sandals from DP at £40 (if I’d checked the weather forecast) or these classic Keanah bow courts by Ted Baker at Office for £80 (if I was feeling particularly flush.)

The search continues…