Grunge Girls Gingham

Do it like Dorothy this Summer and get your gingham on.

Gingham is one of those staples that seems to come back every summer in some shape or form. Remember the days when you couldn’t wait to pull your checky dresses and frilly socks out for school? Well, this year the look is back with a bang.

Gingham never really disappears. It is often about annually, at least as a micro trend, and as always, there are the usual pastel hues around for the warmer weather. However this year, the usually pretty girly patterns are much more oversized and the in-tones seem to be darker hues of navy’s and black with the occasional pop of red, giving the trend more of an updated, grungy, retrospective feel.

This monochrome dress, I actually bought last year from Warehouse and is a dead ringer for the Isa Arfen resort dress Emma Watson wore back in 2016.

It is a button-down style and has a more fitted silhouette reminiscent of that of the fifties. Like Emma, for this shoot (shot by my wonderful friend Hayley Crone, check her out on Insta and Facebook for updates) I kept with the vintage theme by accessorising with bright crimson colour-pop heels, a matching post box red lip and a classic box bag.



To make this trend a bit more relaxed, I would pair it with a skinny scarf and chunky clogs for a more 70s boho vibe, which is my favourite era to replicate. To give it a grunge update for the new season pair it with fishnet ankle socks and a pair of trusty old Vans.

If you’d like to get your hands on a dress just like this, you can check out warehouse’s updated A-line button version which reflects a more relaxed nineties button-down style.

Or, you can also check out some more of my favourite picks for sale online, below. For whether you’re a laid back Lucy, a preppy Polly or a vintage Verity, this one is a trend for everyone.

Kate xx

 

Copyright: HE Official

Elsie Top, £32.99, He Official

Copyright: Nobody’s Child

Navy Peplum Cami, £18, Nobody’s Child

Copyright: Joanie Clothing

Ellen Sun Dress, £40, Joanie Clothing 

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Copyright: ASOS

Off Shoulder Jumpsuit, £35, ASOS

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Copyright: Mango @ASOS

Frill Hem Trousers, £35.99, Mango @ASOS

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Copyright: Nobody’s Child

 

Seersucker Frill Mini Skirt, £20, Nobody’s Child

 

 

I Have This Thing For Vintage…

Last weekend, as I very regularly do, I visited one of my favourite places in the North East- Tynemouth market.

I adore visiting this place as it is just a complete treasure trove for all things vintage, handmade and up-cycled.

I always go there with my usual mental list of specific things to look out for like vinyl and vintage homeware from my favourite sellers (OH and cake ofc), but no matter how hard  I try will often find surprise pieces which I never knew I needed and can’t resist spending on.

I’ve always been a massive lover of vintage clothes, I think I was supposed to have been born in another era, so I was all eagle-eyed when I spotted this sunny vintage dress hanging from a vintage stalls rail, like the holy grail amongst an overwhelming sea of tweed.


I had been just five minutes later it would have been gone as a blonde lady spotted it simultaneously. I’d say it’s from the early sixties/ very late fifties as it has the most beautiful, bold flower pattern which is an iconic look of the era, however the hemline isn’t short enough to be mini and although it’s yellow, it’s subtle, which may suggest it not being from the height of the swinging 60’s.


What I love about it apart from its beautiful daffodil yellow hue is that it can be worn a range of different ways.  It is a bit big for me, so initially, I thought of using it as a sort of summer trench coat over skirts, dresses, and shorts as it is quite tailored.

When worn buttoned as an actual dress, it’s quite boxy but comes with a belt so becomes slightly A-line. It also has a high oriental-style neckline which adds a pretty little twist to the look. The collar also looks great folded down to create a more relaxed V-shaped neckline for when the weather gets a bit warmer.


The thing I adore about vintage clothing, apart from the fact that it is more of a one-off, is the detail and quality of the clothing from the 20th century and before. Garments like this dress were just made to last. The material is a crisp cotton which makes it more durable and there is so much attention to detail in the matching crafted buttons and stitching.


As a huge lover of vintage, I have to say in my opinion the North East isn’t the best when it comes to vintage shops, and a lot of the ones we do have can be rather pricey, unlike the amazing Northern Quater of Manchester. So I was delighted to find out that the dress was a complete bargain at fifteen pounds!!! Which was the best offer I’ve had on vintage clothing since I visited COW Manchester.

So yes, the North East may not have many vintage stores but sometimes if you are willing to hunt, you might just find the best retro easter eggs in the most unlikely of places (like quirky little train stations).

Kate xx

Is this the most versatile accessory ever? 

I’ve always had a thing for headwear and hair accessories. It’s always been my ‘thing’ as I have never been someone who wears jewellery but I love to play around with shoes, bags and headwear. I like to add a bit of quirkiness or nostalgia to my outfits because, hey! It’s fun to be different and I think the way to do that best is with accessories. 

As I am a recent graduate and have things to save for, I tend to try and be a bit more savvy with my buys where I can. I spotted this gorgeous satin scarf the other day and it was an instant impulse buy. I fell in love with the bold, satsuma orange colour with its oriental bloom pattern, which gives the glamorous 1940’s land girl vibe that I love. 

I have found that unlike some hair-ties, it is a perfect length to be a really versatile accessory, which is great because you get more looks for your mula! 

Aside from using it for multiple hairstyles, you can tie them around your neck for another more sophisticated, polished vintage vibe. It also makes for a nice alternative to the choker trend if you want to be a bit different. Pair with a trench, red listick and sunnies or a crisp white blouse and tailored trousers for a glam, retro daytime look. 

If you like to be a bit edgier with your fashion, scarves also look super cool wrapped around ankles and wrists to add a more effortlessly casual, boho accent to any maxi dress, shorts or jeans combo. 

Finally I really love to use vintage scarves to upcycle thrifted or basic bags. It helps to give them a retro twist, adds detail and gives them a new lease of life. Tip: they look great wrapped around smaller handles multiple times and knotted to finish. Also the great thing about having a scarf attached to your bag all the time is that you’ll never be caught out having a surprise bad hair day! 

If you want to experiment with scarves you can buy them new at H&M, (where the featured scarf is from), they have a couple of different patterns so you can choose one which suits, or you can pick them up from almost all vintage sales and shops if you’re looking for something a bit more individual. 

Remember you can follow me on Instagram for regular styling posts @katewears, I’d love to see your take on the trend too! 

Happy accessorising! 

Kate xx

Prints in the Pouring Rain

Well, it’s been a pretty lousy week for weather here in the North East but a great week for bargains (which isn’t great for the bank balance but you only live once).

I’ve picked up a few pieces this week, a lot of them staples too, so that’s my excuse… they’ll never go out of fashion.

One of my favourite buys was this adorable kitsch cactus print playsuit I picked up from Zara. Although generally associated with warmer seasons I thought it would look great layered up on chillier days too.

Yesterday (29th Jan) I met up with one of my best girl friends Rebecca for an impromptu little shoot/natter/food date in Newcastle. Rebecca has always been my partner in crime for many a shoot I’ve done in the past and for some reason we are always cursed with bad weather.

Yesterday was no different and so I decided to pair my playsuit with black tights and a crisp white 1900’s style blouse. I really like to mix my styles, and because the playsuit is quite modern and bold I decided to clash it with something clean and polished, which gave it more of a preppy feel. If I’m being honest it didn’t keep me awfully warm on its own so thank god for big boyfriend coats. Alternatively, if it’s freezing I’d maybe wear it with a little turtle-neck top underneath to give it a bit more of a Parisian vibe too.

I accessorized the look with a cute pastel backpack which has become something of a signature look for me and my beautiful new pastel pink mules, which I also picked up this week, along with a black pair as they’re just great to pop on with any outfit at any time of the year.

I missed out on a pair in Office about a year ago and have regretted it ever since but what I love about these ones is the smaller heel as they give me a little height but are sill super comfy and wearable.

I then added my new favourite beret in a useless attempt to tame my incredibly wild hair which was growing in size by the minute with the damp air. I instead ended up looking like a stressed Hermione over her cauldron trying to make love potions.

If you’re interested in picking up this cute little printed number you can get it in Zara at the moment for an ah-ma-zing £5.99!!! 😮 You can also find the rest of the outfit credits at the bottom of this page!

Happy reading!

P.s excuse the tired eyes…it’s been a long week.

Kate xx

Playsuit, Zara, £5.99

Edwardian style blouse, H&M

Beret, Warehouse, £5

Shoes, Primark, £10

Backpack, Topshop, £26

Metallic Midi Must-Have

A big hi there and hello to you! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year!

For my first post of 2017 I thought I’d show you one of my favourite outfits that I received and wore over the festive period to celebrate with family.

Now I adore a good midi skirt, they’re great for giving your outfits a retrospective feel but can still be made contemporary when paired with the right shoes and top.

For example sometimes if I’m feeling like I want something fresh and grungy I will opt for a band tee and converse to give my look a bit of an edge. Sometimes I like to style them classically vintage the way our grandmothers would have worn them mid-1900s, so I pair it with my Orla Kiely t-bar sandals for a bit of 50s classic prep. Alternatively, like my outfit below, I have tried to make this skirt a bit more boho by loosely tucking in a chiffon floaty top and my platform clogs.

I have literally been looking for a khaki green midi for a good year, and although I did want something netted (hit me up if you know where to buy the perfect one), I fell in love with this one because of it’s crazy cool, iridescent, metallic sheen.


The style of it does remind me of something my granny would have worn back in the day with its razor-sharp pleats, but the fabric gives it a real edge to make a casual outfit bolder and adds a standout sparkle at social events.

I paired it with this rather lovely floral top just to add a contrasting texture to the outfit and make it less clean cut, as I don’t generally like to look too polished, though I did tuck it in to give me more of my a waistline (as I am quite small and tend to drown in shifty shapes.)

I’d definitely say the metallic skirt is one of this season’s must-have’s because of it’s incredible versatility and the fact that it suits a lot of different aesthetics too.

If you want to get your hands on this pleated wonder you can pick it up from cheap-as-chips highstreet store, Primarni, in both khaki and silver. I’m not 100% on the price as it was a gift, but with it being Primark I’m certain it was around the 10-£15 mark, so it doesn’t break the bank either!

Thanks for reading!

love,

Kate xx

 

Big Up the Vintage Box Bag

Afternoon lovely people!

I’d like to take the time to tell you about one of my favourite accessories at the moment which is both stylish and uber practical… the box bag.

Originally popular back in the sophisticated era of the 1950’s, these compact square bags are just as handy and stylish today, they are big enough to fit in all your essentials and small enough to carry in your hand or hang off your shoulder without breaking your back.

I purchased my retro leather number from highstreet royalty Zara and what’s great about this box bag in particular is that it has two compartments to it. In one section you can store the long strap if you want to use the smaller handle, and can use the other for your bits and bobs, or alternatively, you can fill both and carry more if you use the long strap.

What personally drew me to this particular bag was it’s stunning leaf green colour which is bang on trend this season, so gives it a modern update, but it is also a hue which looks a bit more retrospective and aged because of it’s earthiness rather than some of the pastel pinks out there at the moment.

I also really loved the ditsy patterned material wrapped and tied around the main handle giving it a bit of a bohemian vibe which I adore, and it also adds some more texture to the very linear, clean aesthetic. The bonus is if you’re having a bad hair day and don’t happen to have a hair band to hand you have a lovely hair accessory just waiting to adorn your tresses too.

They are definitely a bag style to make a statement of, and quite honestly I can say that as a recent Uni graduate I can’t generally splurge on fast fashion, so I tend to look for styles and prints that are going to be a staple in my wardrobe and won’t really date. Therefore, I like to buy accessories which are of a classic, timeless style which will suit many an occasion and outfit, and this Zara bag is just that.

If you’re anything like me and are on a budget I’d definitely recommend this bag and box bags in general if you’re looking for a small investment piece which can both glam up an outfit and can be worn as a practical alternative to your bog standard leather saddle bag without scrimping on your retro style.

Kate xx