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Quote of the Day

03-_audrey_hepburn“The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman is seen in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides. True beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It’s the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she shows & the beauty of a woman only grows with passing years.”

Audrey Hepburn

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Fashionista Of The Day: Grace Kelly

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It’s been more than 30 years since Princess Grace of Monaco died, but her chic, elegant, flawless style is timeless, with women the world over still attempting to emulate some of that wholesome glamour. Grace was wealthy even before she went on to be a model, a movie star and then a princess as her father was a self-made millionaire, so the debutante look wasn’t an act.

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Grace Kelly modelling evening wear in the 1940s

Unsurprisingly, Grace adored Christian Dior, Chanel, Balenciaga and Yves Saint Laurent. She loved classic pieces, and was very sentimental about her clothes, especially addicted to gloves and shoes – she wasn’t one to fall out of love with a garment  because a new trend had come along. And then there’s that Hermes bag she used to hide her baby bump; today the Hermes Kelly bag still has one of the longest waiting lists in the world. 

Grace with her Hermes bag that was named for her

Grace with the Hermes bag that was named for her

One of my favourite things about her style was the fabulous headwear – safari hats, headscarves, turbans, and then obviously, no biggie, a crown. Other classic trends we can thank her for are a simple white cotton shirt, perfectly tailored capris, and shirtdresses. The thought of her also conjures up images of classic pearls, nipped-in waists and impeccably groomed hair.

Grace with Alfred Hitchcock in Cannes, 1950s

Grace with Alfred Hitchcock in Cannes, 1950s

Obviously, Nicole Kidman is gorgeous and a great actress, but I’m not sure if I like the idea of her playing Grace Kelly. Why put that pressure on yourself? Hopefully I’ll be proved wrong – we definitely don’t need a Naomi Watts as Princess Diana fiasco. Grace was the essence of femininity right up until her untimely death at the age of 52, and a true fashion icon.

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Surviving Valentine’s Day as a Singleton

fridge boyDISCLAIMER: This guide does not condone violence against couples. No matter how smug and self-contented they are.

Because Christmas and New Year’s as a single person is apparently not depressing enough, the thoughtful folks in card shops decide to start selling Valentine’s Day merchandise immediately after to ensure you don’t forget to drink two bottles of wine and text that guy you worked with three years ago and had that awkward work’s party encounter with to check what his plans are on the 14th. Here’s a couple of ideas to help you say, NO, HALLMARK, YOU SINGLE SHAMERS!

Never Liked It Anyway!

Yes, I’m sure that necklace he gave you is really nice, but so are those new burgundy desert boots in Office. This site is perfect for getting rid of your ex’s gifts because not only are you getting money for your unwanted memories, you are encouraged to share your tale of break up woe with all the other women scorned, so it’s like getting paid for therapy!

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Go to the Gym

Ok, I know…just hear me out. Sitting at home and Bridget Jonesing while stuffing your face with Ben & Jerry’s (two men who never stick around that long either) and miming along to All By Myself in your pyjamas is not really the answer, is it? Why not treat yourself to a happiness high and release some endorphins while listening to a really predictable yet effective anti-relationship playlist? Whatever music you’re into, there’s sure to be a few songs about how every member of the opposite sex is evil. Survivor by Destiny’s Child, Here I Go Again On My Own by Whitesnake, literally anything by Taylor ‘Maybe It’s Me?’ Swift – take your pick. Added bonus: the hot men/women there that day are single. Probably.

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Excuse for a Night Out! Not That You Need One…

Hopefully, if you’re like me, you’ve got a bit of a Single Person’s Support Network going on, even if it’s just one other romantically-challenged individual. A night out or even night in with a group of people who are just as emotionally repressed and wonderfully peculiar as you will remind you that even though you’re single, there are people that love you unconditionally and choose to spend time with you because you’re fabulous. Plus you’ll be drunk.

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Treat Yourself!

Think about it; if you were in a relationship, you would have to buy a card at the very least, and my experiences lately show that all cards are now about £18.50, even for the ones that haven’t bothered to shove a lame poem inside. You would probably also have to buy a gift, maybe a bunch of flowers that are hours from death or those hideous cardboard flavoured chocolates that they are able to charge triple the price for because they come in a red heart-shaped box. Dinner maybe, or drinks? Getting your hair done, or other annoying yet essential grooming procedures? It all adds up. But if you’re single, it all adds up to self-indulgence. For me? Why, me, you shouldn’t have!

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Hold On a Minute – I Like Being Single..

OK, I know I gripe and moan about it, but although there are obviously amazing things about being with someone, it’s also sometimes pretty great being single. Because you’re never really ‘alone’, are you? Take some time to appreciate some of the things that you fill your time with that make you feel wonder when you would ever fit a relationship into your schedule! It may sound cheesy or cliche, but it is true – it might be being shoved down your throat, but you can choose to spit it out into the napkin of life and move on (I’m aware that’s a really weird sentence). Have a happy February 14th! xxx

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Quote Of The Day

‘… If it were simply a matter of clothing oneself,fashion would certainly not exist. But it is above all a matter of attiring oneself, and whoever says attire says ornament, and whoever says ornament says art… So, ladies, be stylish. It is a great civic duty. Though Notre-Dame is a cathedral, it is nonetheless une dame. May your exterior be also the cathedral of your soul …’

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Lucie Delarue-Mardrus, Journal des Dames et des Modes,  1912.

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Feeling The Grinch Pinch…

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Christmas. What a magical time of year, that should be banned until the 1st of December but isn’t so by the time it’s December 25th you want to shove pine needles in your eyeballs if you have to listen to Slade one more time. Aah, so magical. And expensive.

But don’t worry! A style savvy Santas little helper is here to assist you with making your frankly underwhelming Christmas bonus stretch that little bit further.

Still Got Cash to Splash?

If you’re lucky enough to only be slightly tightening your designer belt, here’s a few to-die-for discounts to charge to the gold card, sweetie.

Forever Unique Embellished Maxi

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Look like a beautifully presented gift to fashion in this Forever Unique silver maxi dress with dazzling embellished detail over a sheer fabric. With an RRP of £600 and in the sale for £240, it’s a great bargain waiting to be snapped up if you have the means. And who knows, it could make the work Christmas party the night the hot guy from Accounts finally realises he wants to unwrap you…or maybe that’s just my fantasy.  Head over to www.asos.com and select dresses on the Sale tab to find this festive favourite.

Michael Kors Perforated Faux Leather Wallet

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This stunning Michael Kors gunmetal wallet is perfect as a generous gift or a treat for yourself. With an original price tag of £105, it’s now half price at £52.50 and I don’t think it’s going to last too long, so click over to www.theoutnet.com and find the Gifts section for more info or to make a purchase. If you’re not familiar with The Outnet I suggest you check it out, Michael Kors’ stuff especially is often featured at spectacularly low prices.

Grey Balenciaga Round-Framed Sunglasses

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Winter can be such a depressing time – horizontal rain, inside out umbrellas, wind that could slice your face off. Remember just a few months ago when we could sit and sip cocktails in just a maxi dress, and not be judged for drinking all day because that’s just what people do when it’s hot? Let a loved one relive the (very few) glory days of sunshine with these super cool  Balenciaga round framed shades. At £94.38 down from £235.94, this gives you a whopping £60% discount. These too are on www.theoutnet.com , as am I far too often.

Let’s take it down a notch…

So if these items above are each more than your entire budget, I can relate. I promise, there’s bargains out there for you too.

Missguided Optical Illusion Monochrome Maxi

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This monochrome maxi dress with split detail is a steal in the sale on www.missguided.co.uk. At £5.49, it’s not much more than you would pay for Vogue, and the illusion patterns means no reason to hold back on those mince pies. Plus, more cash for cocktails! A winner all round! It could be a Christmas do number teamed with towering heels, or even dressed down with the right layering and footwear.

Yeti Claw Ice Scraper

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The person that has everything probably doesn’t have an ice scraper shaped like a Yeti hand. Funny and I’m sure necessary at some point, this gift is available from www.amazon.co.uk and is currently a mere £3.67. This could also work great as a silly Secret Santa gift, and it will seem like you paid more than you did!

Sterling Silver and Freshwater Black Pearl Stud Earrings

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These gorgeous earrings are made from 925 Sterling Silver and Freshwater Black Pearl, but are on sale on www.amazon.co.uk for an incredible 99p down from £18.00. They also come with a great gift bag so wrap them up and keep schtum about the saving.

So that’s my best discounts of the week. If you’ve got any fabulously frugal finds recently, return the favour and let me know below!

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Victoria’s Secret Annual ‘Put Down That Pie and Go to the Gym’ Show

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If the image of Rosie Huntington-Whitely frolicking scantily-clad through a forest on the Christmas M&S advert isn’t enough to make you feel horrible as you shovel Quality Street into your face, then behold! The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show is here to showcase fabulous new lingerie designs/tip you over the edge. The bevy of impossibly tall beauties strutted their stuff in New York for an event that has become one of the most highly anticipated, not to mention outrageously expensive (which equals good as we all know..) events in the industry.

As bitter as I am that I miss the height requirement by about 8 feet, I can’t deny that it’s always a lot of fun. Don’t get me wrong, I love the severity of ordinary fashion shows but it’s nice to see models getting to improvise a little, getting the opportunity to smile and laugh and play around. After all, the outfits are so outrageously OTT and the musical guests are always fresh, current artists it wouldn’t be right to see the solemn pouty faces we are used to at Fashion Week.

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It was a very British affair, with (my massive girl crush) Adriana Lima adorned in a racy Pearly Queen outfit which I’m not sure would fit in at a jellied eel buffet in London’s East End. Our very own Jourdan Dunn looked dominant in a sexy show jumper outfit, armed with a riding crop and a facial expression that suggested she wasn’t afraid to use it. True to the inner tomboy we all know and love, Cara Delevingne sashayed down the runway in a sporty onesie, with a bejeweled royal blue bra on show and a personalised VS football in her hand. And it wasn’t just the models giving a nod to our fine culture; statuesque warbler Taylor Swift had apparently rolled in some glue and ran into the Union Jack before having an accident with some paint, but still managed to belt out some irritatingly catchy tunes about a celebrity she went out with for 3 days. Good hat though, Swift.

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Other themes included Birds of Paradise and Parisian nights, and the combination of the two gave many of the outfits a wonderfully sensual Moulin Rouge feel. ‘Best Bum in the Business’ Izabel Goulart pulled off this look better than most with a confident, self-assured walk, and an ‘I-know-you-all-want-me’ look in her eyes. The dark hues gave way to pastels, and a whole lot of white for the Shipwrecked and Snow Angels outfits, transforming the Ladies of the Night into pristine innocents (or as innocent as you can be in stockings and a thong). The soft red mist of Paris by night iced over into a frosty Winter Wonderland, clean and crystallised, with Taylor Swift managing to free herself from our nation’s flag to slip into a much more flattering silver embellished shift dress, matching some of the models in beautiful Nicholas Kirkwood shoes (who also custom-made her Union Jack lace-up boots).

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Honourable  mentions go to: Candice Swanepoel, who opened the show with that $10 million Fantasy Bra, not displaying any of the stage fright she claimed to be experiencing days earlier.

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Newcomers Josephine Skriver and Malaika Firth for making their Angel debuts with grace, poise and sex appeal – they definitely earned their wings!

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Angel Jessica Hart, who when questioned about whether or not Taylor Swift would make a good Victoria’s Secret Model, she replied ‘No. She didn’t fit. I probably shouldn’t say that.’ No Jess, you probably shouldn’t, but there’s no reason why I can’t. That would be awful!

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Victoria’s Secret has been no stranger to a bit of controversy this year, from former VS model Kylie Bisutti claiming the lingerie designer made her feel like a ‘piece of meat’ and a ‘sex worker’, to former angel Miranda Kerr being airbrushed to appear even thinner than her already tiny frame in an Instagram pic from the 2012 show, and let’s not forget Cara’s mysterious bag of white powder. But the show was a triumph, and I’m hardly surprised. Who’s going to boycott Victoria’s Secret?

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Get The Look: Dita Von Teese

 

I’m a big lover of all things vintage, and how can you be a fan of a retro look without being a fan of the fabulously classic Dita Von Teese? The queen of burlesque also has a modelling career, acting credits, a beauty book and an underwear line under her suspender belt, and she has recently added ‘own make-up range’ to that list of achievements. Dita teamed up with German brand Artdeco to launch Dita Von Teese Classics, and she has also been kind enough to share with us her Top 5 Tips for achieving her 40s screen siren look…

1.Alabaster skin is the perfect base for a vintage  look. I’d never dream of getting a tan — I always wear sunscreen and put on a hat when I’m out in the sun.

2.Classic red lipstick is the most chic beauty statement a women can make. Matte  lips are like luscious rose petals. Add just a touch of gloss to the centre.

3.In the Thirties and Forties, leaving the half-moon at the bottom of your nail  was the epitome of elegance. It has now become modern and chic again.

4. For a dramatic look, I start with a neutral lid, define a line of black shadow  in the crease. Finish with a sparkling white on your brow bone and eyelid.

5. I always powder my nose using pressed powder in an exquisite, jewelled compact.  They are hard to find, but Estee Lauder does wonderful ones at Christmas.

 

Unfortunately Dita’s make-up range is not available as of yet to us here in the UK, so these tips are the closest we can get to emulating her flawless vintage visage….