Sunday, 3 September 2017

French Kiss

Wearing: Cotton dungarees - Zara; Old Skool shoes - Vans; Basket bag - Zara.

Those of you who have followed this blog for a while will know all too well of my deep-rooted adoration for French girl style. I’m certain at least 99% of you will feel the same.

Those buzzwords are as popular as Jeanne Damas and Caroline De Maigret’s instagram feeds. Which, if you are not checking on the regular, how are you even getting dressed in the morning?

Although, how often do we stop and think what we find so delightful about it? Sure, London gals look cool too… but it’s just not the same is it.

Sat in the kitchen with a peppermint tea, organising photographs for a future post about our trip to the South of France earlier in the year, my mind meandered over this topic.

I figured it’s because it’s more than just a sartorial approach. It’s a whole thing - an attitude, a mode de vie.

And so, before I get started on the travel talk, I thought I take a moment to pin point 10 ways to interpret and incorporate french girl style, in to your holiday wardrobe…

Wearing: Tropical print two-piece - Zara, Cactus print pj top - ASOS, High-Waisted floral print bikini - ASOS, Sunglasses - Monki.

1. Wear his clothes. And if possible, wear it better than him.

2. Wash but leave your hair disheveled. In France, one wouldn’t be as gaudy as to go out with over-primed, polished locks. It’s sacrilegious. And before you ask, yes it is just a happy coincidence that I have zero patience for sitting and doing my own.

3. Mix your prints and clash your colours. An incongruous and contradictory colour palette gives the (desirable) lethargic appearance of recovering from a wild evening; when in reality you had fallen asleep by 10.30pm, after a long, undemanding day in the sun reading Proust.

4. Throw on a candy-stripe fifties collared shirt over your swimsuit and possess an alluring squint like you are James Dean reincarnate, and terribly deep in thought.

5. Get yourself a signature item. Every cool French girl has one – whether it’s as iconic as Birkin’s basket or just your own humble H&M head tie, which you will wear daily to hide the awkwardness that is a grown-out, eye-skimming fringe. On that note…

6. Get a fringe cut in. Even if you have told your hairdresser you are going to grow it out for good this time and have made her promise to make you stick to your word. Even if you have left it over six months between hair appointments to allow for optimum hair growth, a cool French girl would use point number six of a blog post to give her hairdresser a shout out and request a fringe trim… s’il vous plait.
Wearing: Striped romper - Urban Outfitters, Oversized cream shirt - Urban Outfitters, Navy shorts - H&M.

7. Go Au Natural… kind of. We are all too aware that French girls embody a certain je ne sais quoi, when it comes to makeup - the epitome of effortless beauty. However, we also know that it’s almost all lies. Effortlessness is very carefully constructed. Get ahead of your game by tinting your eyebrows and eyelashes prior to a weeklong getaway with your lover and enjoy their marvel at your speedy 5-minute get-ready routine. One slick of lip balm and some SPF and we’re good to go. 

8. Never match your handbag to your outfit. It’s too obvious. And you must always keep any hints of your over-thinking neurosis firmly to yourself and your journal.

9. Defy expectations and wear colour. Ditch the home comforts of navy and a Breton stripe for one day. Doing the unexpected is the modus operandi of the French girl.

10. Wear dark sunglasses to avoid making further small-talk with nearby strangers. One morning smile and a quick “ça va?” is more than enough for anyone.

*Bonus tip*

11. Maintain a perpetual look of melancholy. Inside your heart can be singing but always ensure that your face tells a somber story of “la vie est une merde”, ideally, with all the added melodrama of 1960s new-wave cinema. If all else fails, settle yourself down in a café without company or entertainment. Order a red wine, smoke a cigarette and try to remember what you learned about Foucault’s school of thought at university, whilst you stare moodily in to space.

Beaucoup d'amour,
L xo

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Tropical in Totnes

If you’d had told me a year ago that the colour pink would play a big part in my 2017 wardrobe, I would have laughed you out of town. Or at the very least, gave you one of my best ‘ya’ kidding?’ faces.

I’ve just never been a pink kinda gal.

And yet, here am I. Celebrating entering the final year of my twenties in a hot pink tropical number.


I’m blaming Netflix...

From Stranger Things’ Eleven’s peter-pan collar dress to the stylistic blush detailing in Black Mirror’s tear-inducing San Junipero, it’s safe to say that pastel hues have stolen the show of late, and consequently, millennial pink became a youth culture reference that my old heart could finally get on board with.

We can all ignore the fact that my use of the words "youth culture" has only worked to further cement how much of a grandma I actually am, can't we? Good.

Last weekend, I jumped on a bus with James & Co for an overnight trip to Devon's Seachange Festival

We spent Saturday morning brunching and wandering around Totnes’ cobbled high-streets for glimpses of its hilltop castles, exercising self-restraint whilst peering into gelato parlour windows and grabbing a few snaps outside of its pastel-fronted town houses, wishing I'd remembered to pick up my sunglasses before leaving the bus. All the squinting.

With the summer sun making an almighty comeback for the bank holiday weekend, I reluctantly ditched the jumpers and gave this tie-waist floral midi one last whirl.

If I’m being honest, I’m not completely sold on the asymmetric hemline – I’m considering digging out the wonder web to even it up – but layered over a white tee with a pair of chucks, unbrushed hair (questionable but optional) and a clashing red suede bag, it did the job for what will most likely be, my final dalliance with colour before knitwear season arrives in full.

Well, maybe I'll extend the colour love long enough to pick up this emerald green Weekday velvet-jacket in time for Autumn setting in. It'd be rude not to, eh. 

L xo

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

'As Long As We're Together...' | Latitude Festival 2017

Not much screams SUMMER, more than cruising to the coast for a festival. All you need is a best friend, plenty o’snacks, three-discs of RnB hits and Beyonce’s lemonade to get sassy to.

Which is exactly what we did last weekend. It was blissful, idyllic even. Well, until we nearly crashed my lovely little Betsy Beetle into the car in front at 70mph, when the traffic in front suddenly stopped and I had to swerve in to the next lane.

Worse still, the avoiding-a-crush-stunt was an EXACT REPLICA of a situation that happened on the way to Latitude in 2012, that time, with Tom driving his 1970s gold beetle and performing a similar side-swerve. My first festival tip: don’t drive to Latitude in a Beetle.

There was a time when my festival attire would only consist of something butt-skimmingly short, garishly bold or ostentatiously sparkly.

These days, I am allll about the comfort. We headed down on the Saturday, so I with stuck with slouchy culottes, a soft, grey-marl tee & converse. Only slightly jazzing it up with a choker and heavier-than-usual make-up, which I regretted after laughing it off, twice within an hour of setting up camp. After the 2.5-hour drive down turned in to a 5-hours as we neared the festival, I was confident that the day 1 comfort plan prevailed.

I only took a handful of photos of the cute set-ups in the forest. I was too busy enjoying things in real life, like in the olden days, so thought I'd share a couple of post-festie pics of what I wore on the Sunday!
Day two started our WARM. The kind of warm that makes pale-ass peeps like me cower in whatever shade is available until the clouds come over. I picked up this Pins & Needles red gingham dress from Urban Outfitters a little while back. It looks like it's sold out now, but they still have the top version of this style in their sale. Light and airy, it did the job and the pop of red made me feel fancier and fresher than I felt after two hours of sleep.

My wellies got accidentally chucked out during our house move last year, so these Dr. Martens black leather chelsea boots came in super handy, for stomping around the dusty Southwold fields all day. I am so obsessed with sport socks at the moment, and I've been going to Monki to pick up the cutest colour ways in the softest cottons. 

One thing, which I have always been quite good at during a festival is layering. I usually wear men's overshirts from R-E, but I spotted this way-more-festival-appropriate offering from Zara, with thee most beautiful rust-toned embroidered back and big red poms-poms and I freaking love it. Not least, because it's baggy enough to hide a granny cardigan underneath in the evenings, when the temperature dips ;-). Lastly, I used my basket bag to ferry around my little bits during the day, just because, that's all I use at the moment, and threw on my ASOS raincoat, when the heavens opened.

We'd missed the whole of Friday and big chunk of Saturday - including Willy Mason, who I was so so so looking forward to :( - but we did manage to catch a couple of crackers. The Lemon Twigs were incredible and it was so lovely to see my boy play on the Sunday eve, just before we headed home. I was in my element bopping along to 90s hip hop and starting a Jeremy Corbyn chant during the Hot Dub Time Machine and was both utterly perplexed and amused by the 'Teresa May Smackdown' punk / wrestling performance piece that was going on in the middle of the woods. I also really enjoyed the Dj Yoda who was mixing sing-along tracks to visuals and soundbites from Stranger Things (not long until season 2, woooop).
I'm going to be heading to a couple more UK festivals later next month, so do let me know if you've got any on your list and hit me up with anymore style recommendations to combat this weirdly warm / unsurprisingly showery British weather - catch ya' soon. 

Much love, 
L x  
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