Sunday, 31 March 2013

Style Inspiration: My Friend Hayley

So a few weekends ago we were at an open home and my dear friend Hayley rocks up in a simple yet stylish outfit for a Saturday morning. So I decided to copy her.

The outfit was black skinny jeans, black ballet flats and a navy tee. Casual yet so pulled together. Hayley is a fellow 40+ chick, just a few months younger than me. Here is my take on her look from that day:

Bright Star Tee in 'Smut' | Andrea Moore | Sold Out
Slim Black Jean
Slim Black Jean | Trenery | $109.95 | 6 - 18 
Cecily Stud Point Flats | Country Road | $149.00  | 37 - 42
And below is the outfit featuring these very three items on me. The tee has some subtle sequin action going on, just hard to capture on film. I really hope Andrea Moore repeats this style. The flats are selling out. I bought my pair yesterday and they are very cool:

 Sunglasses: Karen Walker 'Deep Freeze; Leather Cuff: Dyberg Kern

Photos by Paul D

Saturday, 30 March 2013

Stylish Wet-Weather Gear

My stylish 40-something sister Tanya moved to Hokitika on the west coast of the South Island late last year. Spring happens to be the rainy season on the coast so she endured about a million weeks of torrential rain while settling into a new town and a new high-profile job. In Tanya's honour, I have compiled a collection of pieces that protect from the rain but don't compromise on style. These are all international buys to spice things up a bit. Enjoy!

Trespass Womens Bengairn 3 In 1 Jacket - Black

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Medicinal Flats

So I have been diagnosed with vertigo. Felt dizzy today at work, lay down for an hour, felt sick. Paul had to come and collect me and our car (thanks to Jan for dropping him off!). Doctor says it's vertigo. So that means flat shoes at work until I get my balance back. Luckily, I have just started looking for some new point-toe flats for Autumn/Winter. Here are my latest style crushes. Country Road has a fantastic range:check them all out online. I have tried on the three styles from CR below and they are true to size.

Note: Country Road and Trenery have a spend and save on for card holders: spend $300 get $100 off; spend $150 get $50 off.


Saturday, 16 March 2013

Winter Coats

I always find buying a Winter coat a challenge. For me, elegance and practicality are key and so is quality. With coats, you really do get what you pay for. If going for a cheaper coat, accept that the fabric quality will be low. If you have the time, compare a cheaper coat with one that's $50.00 or $100.00 more expensive. Decide if you can stretch a little more for a better-quality coat. It's a substantial garment, so aim for the best quality you can afford.

If your budget means you have to go for a cheaper coat, check the following:

- Are the seams straight?
- Is the lining in the sleeves sitting right? Does it come out of the sleeve when you put your arm in?
- Do the lapels sit flat? No amount of ironing will alter this so put it back if in doubt.
- Are the sleeves long enough?
- Does it have pockets? A cheaper coat may be missing these and you will hate that come August!
- Are the buttons secure?
- Does it actually make you look and feel great or are you just happy it's a cheap buy?
- Live in Wellington? Dunedin? Invercargill? Do you really believe acrylic is as warm as wool?

A bit early in the season, but here is an edit of what's in local stores/online for Southern Hemisphere AW13. A real mix of styles here - corporate and casual. I have categorised them into price ranges to make it easier for you to stick to your budget. My personal favourites are the Military Pea Coat from Portmans (casual) and the Reefer Double-Breasted Car Coat from David Lawrence (corporate). I am waiting on Saba to release their coat range. They do amazing coats so as soon as they release, I will update you. Also, old standby Country Road should release their coat range in the next week or so after the mid-season sale is over.

Thanks to my gorgeous cousin Selina for the inspiration for this story. Enjoy!

Under $200
 Hooded Double-Breasted Coat | Glassons | $79.99 | 6 - 16
 A cute take on the pea coat style. The hood makes it a cool weekend coat. Note: this is acrylic, not wool.
 Classic Double-Breasted Coat | Glassons | $99.99 | 6 - 16
 Can't afford a trench coat and a wool coat? This combines both! Wear belted for a chic silhouette. Note: acrylic, not wool.

Abbie Single-Breasted Coat | Forever New | $99.99 | 6 - 16 | More colours
Forever New has a great range of cute coats in a range of sizes and styles. They tend to produce more lighter colour options, so if you're seeking a non-black coat look here. This Winter white coat has a simple shape that would look great in any budget fashionista's closet. The pleating detail is really pretty too.

Military Pea Coat | Portmans | 6 - 16 | $149.95
I love the details in this coat. Faux leather collar and shoulders; big buttons. Perfect weekend coat with a striped tee or jumper underneath, black skinny jeans and some cute ankle boots. This coat would look great on a 20-something, a 40-something... a 60-something...

$200 - $500 
 Essential Work Coat | Max | $249 | 6 - 18 
Like the military trend but not ready for epaulettes and medals? This coat's fit and flare shape, big buttons and wide lapel provide a very subtle take on the military trend. Medals optional.

  Italian Melton Tab Detail Retro Coat | Marcs | AU$399.00 | 6 - 12 | More colours
Not the best size range but this coat is a lovely mid-price option. A very chic shape and the powder blue colour is stunning. Also comes in yellow and red. If you wear mostly black, this is your perfect coat. 

Wool Trench
  Wool Trench | Trenery | $399.00 | XS - XXL | Wool/Cashmere
A classic, elegant coat combining some key trends: cashmere, camel and trench.
Double-Breasted Wool Coat | Witchery | AU$399.00 | 6 - 16 
Another military-inspired coat and also one which celebrates the return of the double-breasted style.
Lipped-Collared Coat | David Lawrence | AU$359.20 (on sale) | 6 - 18
Heard about the 1920s influence on fashion this season? It's not all about flapper dresses and Downton Abbey beading, friends. The cocoon coat is a classic '20s shape. This coat is a modern take on the original (though they would typically have a single button positioned at the hip). The influence of pale blue is strong this season.
Reefer Double-Breasted Car Coat | David Lawrence | AU$319.20 (on sale) | 6 - 18
Burgandy was a key colour on the AW catwalks in the Northern Hemisphere. This plum car coat is elegant and affordable - and bang on-trend. A perfect shade to offset your black, charcoal and navy Winter work wardrobe...
$500 - $800 

Active Cape | Andrea Moore | $675.00 |  S - L | More colours
Capes are a cool alternative to coats and can work well for both a corporate and high-casual look.
 Catherine Trench | Kate Sylvester | $895.00 | XS - L | More colours 
Another wool trench. This Kate Sylvester coat comes in Marine (above), Aqua and Black. The Marine colourway is in the Teed Street store window now!
Soft Wool Coat
Soft Wool Coat | Veronika Maine | AU$449.00 | 6 - 16 
Liven up this plain grey coat with a colourful scarf. A nice easy coat in a flattering single-breasted shape (good if you are larger in the bust).


Awe-Inspiring Coat
 Awe-Inspiring Coat | Karen Walker Mainline | $1,015.00 | 6 - 12 | More colours
From the current Fantastique Magnifique Mainline collection, this baby-pink swing coat is a real investment but would be yours forever. Also comes in caramel.

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Sandshoes for Grown Ups

For most of my thirties I always had a pair of white Converse Chuck Taylors in my closet. At the time, they were the perfect casual weekend shoe when it got too cold for sandals and too wet for ballet flats. Recently, I discovered some great alternatives to this style. I live in my Superga shoes at the moment. You still get the great casual look, but it's just a bit more polished. If it's time for an upgrade in your life, try these for starters...

Superga Cofu Classic  |  |  Around NZ$80.00


  Bensimon Shoes (Range)  |  | Around NZ$70

Cheap Monday Base Low-top Sneaker  |  | Around $NZ90.00

Sunday, 10 March 2013

In the Navy

Navy is my colour for Autumn Winter 2013, friends. As I age, black close to the face does me no favours. I find that charcoal and navy work better, teamed with a chic black cigarette pant for work (or a black skinny jean for the weekend). However you decide to wear it, navy can be a refreshing alternative to the usual black on black. It's also a way to experiment with a little colour, if brights aren't your thing. Here's what I have my beady eyes on around the local stores and around the net...


 Change it Out Placket Shirt | Storm | $169.00 | 6 - 14
(I have seen this in store and it looks great.)

 Margaret Howell Silk Scarf | Everyday Needs | $175.00

Stripe T-Shirt
Stripe T-shirt | Trenery | $64.90 | xx Small - xx Large

(I have this. Comfy, versatile, affordable. Tip: go down one size.)

Image 1 of Whistles Mesh Detail Oversize Top
Whistles Mesh Detail Oversize Top | ASOS | NZD$110.28 | UK 6 - UK 16

Reindeer Scarf in Cream and Navy
Reindeer Scarf | Richmond Hill Studio/Etsy | US$68.00

Grace Navy Python Matt Spine Scale

Grace Navy Ballet | Sambag | NZ$218.37 | 35 - 42

Oversized Runway Watch | Michael Kors | NZ$316.58

Woven Box Chain Bag | Topshop | £30.00

Friday, 8 March 2013

In Praise of the Pixie Crop

Meg, the daughter of one of my dearest friends Heather, this week shaved for a cure. In a couple of weeks, Meg will sport one of the most feminine and chic hair styles around: the pixie crop. Today's post is in honour of Meg who joins these beauties...

Jean Seberg, Actress

Halle Berry, Actress

Natalie Portman, Actress

Mia Farrow, Actress and Humanitarian

Audrey Hepburn, Actress and Humanitarian

Stella Tennant, Model
Meg Kauri, Student and Humanitarian