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fashion tips

Fashion, Shop

How to make fashion purchases you’ll always love

8th June, 2019

When it comes to shopping it’s easy to get caught up in the process and end up with something that you may only be interested in for a short period of time. It’s these purchases that often end up gathering dust in your wardrobe and ultimately wind up on a ‘to throw away’ pile in the not too distant future. These purchases often add up and once you’ve done a final tally you’ll often realise (much to your dismay) that you could have bought a big ticket item that you truly love.

So how can you go about making sure you end up buying things that you won’t fall out of love with in a week? Here are some key things to keep in mind:

Do some research

Shop around and check out what’s available out there. Whether it’s shoes or a dress you might find that you had one particular style in mind but once you’ve looked further you may find another style that you love even more.

Give yourself a cooling off period

Regretful purchases notoriously happen when you’ve seen something and immediately snap it up without giving it much further thought. Sometimes these purchases work out but more often than not you could end up something that you’ll lose interest in.

This is why it’s important to give yourself a cooling off period. If something catches your eye, sleep on it and reassess in the morning. If you’re still thinking about it then buy it. You’ll know it’s true love when you can’t get it out of your head.

Do the wardrobe test

Ask yourself if what you’re about to buy will realistically work with the rest of your wardrobe. Think about where you could wear it to, what you can wear it with and how many outfits you could pull together now if it were sitting in your wardrobe. If your answer to any of those questions is a bit sketchy then it might be worth reconsidering.

Consider cost per wear

Bear in mind that something is not cheap (even if it’s on sale and been reduced drastically) if you only end up wearing it once. That’s why I always factor in cost per wear whenever I’m buying anything.

Sometimes it can be easy to opt for something that may be slightly cheaper but not what you truly want however if you find that it hardly gets used then you’re not getting value for money. The same goes for buying something super expensive but then finding you barely wear it.

It makes much more sense to hang out for something you truly love. If something works out to be expensive but then you end up wearing it to death and the cost per wear ultimately ends up being $2 a day then you’re definitely onto a winner.

 

Fashion

What every girl should have in her capsule weekend wardrobe

11th May, 2019

By the time the weekend rolls around all I want to wear is something comfortable that still fits into my usual style of polished and classic. Also come Saturday morning I just want to get the day started and grab my morning coffee with the girls rather than standing in front of my closet pondering what to wear. If you’re the same and would rather just go into auto-pilot style-wise when you’re in relaxation mode, then I highly recommend pulling together your very own capsule wardrobe for the weekend. By narrowing down your wardrobe to a few key pieces for the weekend you make getting dressed so much easier.

When doing this pick the pieces that you know you feel and look good in, but also are ideal for just relaxing and enjoying a lazy day. Consider your head-to-toe look from your tops and bottoms to shoes and accessories. These will form the cornerstone of your weekend looks and make getting a breeze. When it comes to what to have in your wardrobe, I highly recommend considering adding the following things. These items feature heavily in my off duty wardrobe and I know you’ll get plenty of use out of them too.

Sneakers

A good, reliable pair of white sneakers is comfy and can be worked back with dressy ensembles or your most casual off duty look. Definitely include them in your weekend rotation.

Jeans

A good pair of jeans in a classic wash will serve you well on weekends. You can pair them with a simple tee for a day of running errands or dress them up with heels for drinks with the girls.

A white tee

Invest in the best quality white tee you can as I guarantee you will wear it to death. I wear mine with jeans, under dresses, with skirts, shorts, the list is endless. I honestly can’t get through a weekend without wearing one.

A dress you can throw on easily

The thing with dresses is they’re comfy and so non-fuss. Just throw a dress on and you’re pretty much done. Look for one in a great print or alternatively neutral shades if you want to get multiple uses out of it.

Fun frames

I tend to change my sunglasses as often as I do my outfits so I can attest that often great frames can really add something extra to a look. For weekends in particular, I think a fun pair of sunglasses (I love a cat eye or a small, minimalist style) that’s just a little more playful is ideal for off duty style.

What are some of your weekend wardrobe essentials?

Fashion

How to keep your clothes looking pristine

9th March, 2019

We all drop a fair amount of money on our clothes so it’s important to ensure they last season after season. If your clothes don’t tend to go the distance it may be time to tweak your clothes maintenance routine. Adopt some of these basics and you could well give your clothes a new lease on life.

Say goodbye to wire hangers

If you want to keep your clothes’ shape be sure to invest in wooden hangers or flocked hangers. Wire hangers tend to end up misshapen and don’t provide enough support so you’ll end up with wrinkled, bunched up clothes. Additionally you don’t want to have delicates such as a silk shirt snagging on a hanger. Plus when you’re flicking through your clothes rail it’s highly likely wire hangers will end up in a gnarly mess which will make it much harder to find what you’re looking for.

Folding and sorting

When it comes to closet organisation be sure to fold anything that can easily be stretched out such as t-shirts and knits. Hang garments that tend to wrinkle easily such as dresses and shirts.

Follow care instruction labels

Yes, they might be a pain to follow at times but going rogue when a garment clearly states dry clean only or throwing something in the washing machine when it specifies hand washing it will compromise the quality of a garment. If you want your clothes to stay in the same condition as when you first bought it it’s important to launder it as instructed.

Always separate your clothes into whites, brights and dark colours

Failing to separate your clothes will mean that your once bright white t-shirt may end up looking dull and grey as a lot of garments aren’t colourfast which means colour molecules will end up settling on lighter coloured garments.

Examine where you do the most damage to your clothes

Are you constantly damaging your clothes in the same spots? It’s time to look at how you can minimise it. For example if you’re always getting frayed hems it could mean that you need to hem your pants a little higher to avoid it dragging on the ground or alternatively you may need to limit the shoes you wear to a particular height. Pinpointing how you damage your clothes the most means you’re better able to avoid it.

Don’t ignore stains

Deal with a stain immediately to avoid it setting in. A baby wipe or soda water will help temporarily treat a stain if you’re out and about but be sure to dab it with a pre-stain treatment and wash immediately when you get home.

What are some ways you keep your clothes in great condition?

Fashion

What to do when you’re bored of your wardrobe

25th February, 2019

KW AKMAL SAKE-10

It all hits us at some point—that feeling when you look into your wardrobe and think you have absolutely nothing to wear. It’s easy to hit a wardrobe rut when you’re constantly wearing the same things on rotation but the solution isn’t necessarily hitting the shops with credit card in hand, it’s actually finding new reasons to fall in love with things you already own. Here’s how…

Challenge yourself to rework an old favourite

If there’s a blouse you absolutely adore but it has become a little lacklustre of late because of the sheer frequency in which you wear it why not challenge yourself to style it in a new way? If you would usually wear it with a skinny jeans why not try pairing it with a high-waisted skirt or a pair of wide leg pants instead? Don’t just rely on your usual outfit combinations, learn to experiment by trying on unlikely pairings and push yourself out of your fashion comfort zone. You never know what great look you may unearth in the process.

Just add accessories

It’s true, the right accessories can really transform a tired wardrobe. Pair a scarf with a dress or top a shirt with a statement necklace to give each look a new spin. Alternatively if you wear the same bag everyday why not mix things up and try pairing your outfit with a different bag each day. A simple bag change can really alter the overall effect of an outfit. The same goes for shoes. If you usually wear a particular look with heels try pairing it with flats. If you usually wear it with dressy shoes try teaming it with sneakers instead.

Change up your bag to refresh favourite outfits

Turn to some visual inspiration

I am guilty of falling into a wardrobe rut where I’ll just repeat the same outfits over and over again. To help shake myself out of this I’ll do a quick scroll through Instagram, flip through a fashion magazine or visit some of my favourite style websites just to get the creative juices flowing. Sometimes all it takes is one image to spark a new idea for an outfit I can pull together using what I already own.

Get something altered

Survey your wardrobe and see if there’s anything that can be repurposed into something new with a few alterations. Sometimes all it takes to completely transform something could be a new hemline or having something taken in in order to change the silhouette. You could find yourself with a brand new wardrobe favourite for just the cost of visiting a tailor.

Take my outfit challenge

If you’re bored of your wardrobe after an easy to follow plan on how to tackle it, try my 7-day outfit challenge. I’ve outlined a different thing to try each day and it will force you to have to look at what you already own and steer you into new territory.

What are some of your favourite ways to refresh your wardrobe?
Fashion

How to change up your style this year

16th January, 2019

The start of another year marks also the start of another 12 months of getting dressed day in and day out which begs the question: are you happy with your style? If you’ve been feeling as if something is lacking in the fashion department of late and you need something to help you get excited about your wardrobe again then you’ve come to the right place. Here are a few easy ways to change up your look this year with minimal fuss.

Challenge yourself to use something you wear infrequently

We all have those pieces in our closet that we still like but admittedly don’t wear all that often. So this year, make an effort to put those pieces into rotation. Often you can end up wearing the same things from your wardrobe all the time that incorporating something into your look that doesn’t get used frequently can make it feel new again.

Learn to play with accessories more

Accessories are honestly one of the easiest ways to inject some new life into your existing wardrobe. A pair of statement earrings here, a necklace there or a great pair of sunglasses can really lift an outfit and make it feel fresh.

Try different silhouettes

Of course we all have our favourites as far as the style of clothing we go for goes but sometimes that can get a little monotonous. So why not try working with different silhouette styles? Relaxed pieces as opposed to fitted, long instead of shirt, dresses instead of pant—these are all easy ways to inject a little different style into your life.

Look to your style icons

A style refresh needs a little outfit inspiration to get it going. So why not check out what the women whose style you admire are doing? Often a quick scroll through your fave blogs or Instagram accounts can help you hone in on a few new trends to try and looks worth experimenting with.

Broaden your colour palette

It’s easy to get caught up wearing the same ol’ colours all the time so this year, make an effort to go beyond your favourites. Try colours you usually wouldn’t wear to help add a new dimension to your fave outfits. Often a little injection of colour here and there can really transform your old favourites.

Tell me—what are some ways you’re trying to change up your style this year?

Fashion

How I plan my outfits

5th January, 2019

Planning outfits helps me stay organised

I’m an outfit planner. My days are so varied that I like to take wardrobe dilemmas out of the equation as much as possible (that said, I’m not totally immune to a wardrobe crisis here and there) by mapping out my outfits. Some days I’m in full mum mode which means comfort is key but other days where I’m juggling work functions and Date with Kates I need to look a little more polished. Here are a few key ways that I make it work.

I always have inspo at the ready

Planning outfits is made much more stress-free if I have a few looks I’ve seen at my fingertips to inspire me. I tend to collect these as I go along whether it’s saving images on my Instagram or screenshotting particular looks I come across. If I am a bit stumped as to what to wear a quick scroll through these images will immediately get the styling juices flowing.

Wardrobe organisation

If there’s one thing that will make pulling an outfit together easier it’s an organised closet. My wardrobe is organised according to category so jackets together, jeans together and so forth so I know immediately where to look. There’s nothing worse than having a particular outfit in your only to find the shirt that pulls it all together is M.I.A. And to make things even simpler I compartmentalise all the pieces I wear all the time into a section in my wardrobe so I don’t have to search the rest of my closet and mess everything up in order to find what I’m looking for.

Wardrobe organisation is key for a seamless outfit planning session

Having a hero piece

I know some people start with a pair of shoes or a great necklace and work their outfit around that but I like to start with a particular garment whether it be a dress or pants. From there I build on the outfit with a jacket, shoes and bag. I think by just having one key item to start from it helps with creating an entire look rather than just trying to match random pieces together.

Making it versatile

There are times when my day is quite mixed so I need to make sure my outfits are versatile so they’re appropriate for a few different occasions. I sometimes have multiple events in a day so I have to ensure that I only need to change one thing to mix up the look as I don’t often have time to change. This can be as simple as changing the jacket I’m wearing to give the outfit a different vibe.

Giving myself enough time

I’m a planner but there are those people who plan their outfits the night before, even the week before and I’m the first to admit that I can’t work that way. I’d love to be that organised but I find I won’t feel like wearing something if I lay it out beforehand which totally defeats the purpose. So to combat this I try and factor outfit prep into my morning routine so I don’t get frazzled and end up running late. Even just an extra 10-15 minutes of time is enough to pull something together with minimal stress. I don’t want to completely leave it to chance though so I make sure most things I’m likely to reach for are clean and pressed so they’re ready to go.

What are some of your major wardrobe tips? I’d love to hear them so share them in the comments below.

Fashion

The pieces every spring/summer wardrobe should have

22nd December, 2018

Have you started planning your spring/summer wardrobe yet? I’ve been planning my checklist for awhile now and I’ve noted a few key staples that I’d like to add to my closet to welcome the warm weather that’s about to descend upon us. Before doing this I think it’s always a good idea to do a little reconnaissance mission of what’s in store and online so you know exactly what pieces you’re going to be snapping up. It also allows you to pick the best of the bunch and get a really great deal on key items that you know you’re going to be investing in for your new season looks.

I’ve been keeping an eye on everyone from my favourite celebs, to my stylish friends and checking out my go-to blogs and magazines over the past few weeks to pinpoint what’s going to really update my outfits for this time of year. If you’ve yet to compile your list, here’s what I think you should definitely be adding to it.

A Midi-dress

Dresses are one of the most wearable, stylish things you can add to your spring/summer wardrobe. Opt for one in a gorgeous print that will take you through many a sunny afternoon looking effortlessly chic.

A Co-ord set

A co-ordinating set is an easy way to look polished without really trying. There’s something about a matching top and bottom that just screams stylish whether it be a blouse and shorts or a skirt and slip, there are so many different sets to shop this season you’ll be hard pressed to limit yourself to just one.

Sandals/slides

Summer calls for at least one trusty pair of sandals or slides that you can easily slip on. I’ve really started gravitating towards slides as I like how wearable they are, however it really depends on what feels comfortable—some people like the support a sandal gives. You can always go for classic colours such as black, white and tan however I think the sunny weather at this time of year is a great excuse to embrace vibrant shades that will pop against any outfit.

A straw bag

If you’re going to buy one bag this season make it a straw one. Whether it’s a satchel, top handle or bucket style there’s definitely a trend towards embracing natural, earthy materials as far as bags go.

Lightweight trousers

I think there’s nothing better than a pair of linen trousers to keep cool during spring/summer. They’re also super easy to pair with everything from a button down shirt to a plain white tee so you’re guaranteed to get plenty of wear out of them.

Bold sunglasses

Don’t step outside without a pair of great sunglasses by your side. I think now is the perfect time to push the boundaries a little—think coloured frames or interesting embellishments for a little fun.

A statement skirt

I am loving bright printed pleated midi skirts at the moment as they’re seriously easy to wear whether I’m off to work or on mum duty. However if midi’s not your style, there are still plenty of options whether it’s a knee length wrap skirt or a cute mini. Just don’t be afraid to go bold!

Sneakers

A pair of trusty sneakers always has a place in any wardrobe, whatever the season. Chunky dad style sneakers are in at the moment but if they’re not your scene, you can always turn to a pair of classic white trainers. Whether they be from classic French brand Superga to urban-ready Adidas or a designer pair by Gucci or your favourite go-to brand you’ll be guaranteed to be turning to your sneakers multiple times a week.

Fashion, Shop

What I look for before buying anything designer

1st December, 2018

Nothing beats buying a beautiful designer item but they’re often a significant investment so I always make sure I am strategic about what I’m purchasing to ensure there’s no buyer’s remorse involved. If you’re looking to snap up a special piece to treat yourself or are looking to add some key pieces to your wardrobe in the new year here’s what I always look for…

Is it really popular?

I steer clear of the ‘it’ bag of the season. If I’m shopping for an everyday bag that’s going to be carrying everything from my essentials to my laptop then I make sure that I opt for something that’s a signature item for the brand but not ubiquitous. I don’t like having a designer bag that everyone has because I feel they go in and out of fashion just as quickly as they come in. Plus you don’t want people being able to immediately identify that your bag is from a certain year’s collection. To combat this I always ask the shop assistant if it’s a style they intend to do again so it’s not so identifiable to a particular year.

Finding a unique style

I’m the complete opposite in my approach to evening bags and shoes. If I’m buying something special like a clutch I like to make sure they’re not making further runs of it because I want it to be a one-off. The same rule applies when I’m shopping for statement heels. I want them to be quite unique so I don’t want them coming back season after season.

Anything with interlocking Cs is always a good buy!

Researching what’s out there

I used to do a lot of shopping whenever I went on an overseas trip but these days that’s impossible as a mum, especially now with two little girls to entertain. So most of my designer purchases are made online these days. I always make sure to visit various websites such as Net-a-Porter, Nordstrom and Matches Fashion to see what’s available. One way I make sure I’m only getting up to the minute releases is to click on the ‘What’s New’ section when I’m browsing websites. That way I’ll only be seeing current stock.

Double check the size

Shopping online at the high end e-tailers is often a little easier as doing returns is fairly straightforward if something isn’t quite right. However I always do a check of the size just to be sure it’s the right fit. If it’s true to size generally choosing your normal size will be fine, however if it’s not I always check if I’ve bought the brand before and see if there’s something in my closet that I can cross check the sizing against.

This Gucci clutch will be a go-to for years to come

Always opt for classic

I’m all for taking a fashion risk or two but when you’re making a purchase that’s quite expensive it pays to think longevity. I always opt for neutral colours and opt for classic styles so I know that I’ll end up with something that will last in my wardrobe season after season.

Shop around

Anything by a high end designer is generally going to come with a significant price tag so be prepared to shop around. Check out prices both in-store and online before you buy anything so you can get the best deal. Whilst they’re definitely an investment buy and will (if you choose right) last you for years to come, it still doesn’t hurt to pay the least amount as possible…and hey, anything leftover can always go to another future purchase!

What’s one designer purchase you’ve made that you absolutely love?

Fashion

How to ensure your look goes the distance at the races

31st October, 2018

Being at the races is great fun but it can also be a long day. This is why it’s key that you ensure your look is able to go the distance and still look as great as it did when you first arrived. There’s nothing worse than looking dishevelled after a few hours when you’ve still got the whole day ahead of you. Having gone to countless racing events over the years, this is what I’ve found will ensure your look still looks fresh throughout the day.

Break in your shoes

I cannot stress this point enough. Wear your shoes a number of times before the actual day so it’s comfortably broken in. You don’t want to be dealing with major blisters from heels right out of the box on a day that you’ll likely be walking and on your feet for hours.

Choose a heel height that you can last in

It’s not compulsory to wear sky high stilettos to the races so don’t force yourself to do it if you’re going to be uncomfortable. There are so many gorgeous shoes available at varying heel heights to choose from so if you think you’ll be hobbling around in agony with a super high heel then opt for one that’s a little shorter. Also wear something with a thicker, sturdier heel as you don’t want to be sinking into the grass throughout the day.

Opt for a bag that has a strap

A clutch is great but it can admittedly become tedious carrying it around for hours, especially when you’re trying to eat something and have a drink but don’t have a hand free to do both. One thing I like doing is bringing a bag with me that has a hidden strap that I can use to go hands-free if I need to.

Keep makeup to a minimum

As the races are a day time event your makeup should be quite subtle and understated anyway but I’ve found that this has an additional benefit: less touch ups. By keeping your makeup quite simple then you won’t risk having it smudge away throughout the course of the day and you won’t have to spend an inordinate amount of time touching up in the bathroom when you could be enjoying yourself.

Choose comfortable headwear

It’s annoying having to constantly adjust your headpiece so I always like to wear pieces that I know will stay put. If you don’t fancy devoting time to fixing a fascinator that’s become askew, then a great hat, a headband or a turban is great for this reason.

Tell me—are you going to any racing events? How do you keep your look fresh?

Fashion, Shop

How to avoid an impulse purchase you’ll regret

8th October, 2018

We’ve all been guilty of making an impulse purchase that seemed like a good idea at the time but later on turned out to be a not so good buy. The thing with buying items on a whim all the time is that you’ll end up wasting money and end up with clothes you’re not actually going to wear. Wouldn’t you rather put your shopping funds towards something that you absolutely love? I know that it can be difficult to resist buying a pair of cute shoes or a great dress when you first spot it but it’s so important to step back to ensure that you’re making a good buy. Here are a few things that you can do to try and curb an impulse buy before it happens.

Walk around the shop or step away from the laptop

If you’ve got the overwhelming urge to buy something and it really wasn’t in your plan to do so then do the the equivalent of taking a deep breath and counting to 10 by walking away from it. Either walk out of the shop for half an hour or step away from your laptop and make yourself a cup of tea so you can try and get that ‘buy, buy, buy’ feeling under control. Whilst you’re doing this think about the below.

Outfit check it

Think about what other things in you closet this potential buy could work with. If you’ve managed to mentally work it back with a number of outfits then it’s likely to get plenty of use. If you can only come up with a handful of looks then think twice about buying it because it might not get many outings and won’t be worth the spend.

Have a shopping list

I always like to think strategically about any potential purchases to avoid impulse buys that may or may not work. This is why I’ve always got a shopping list of things that I need in my wardrobe. Whether it’s a gap I’ve spotted in the clothes I have, something I need to replace or a look I need for an upcoming event, I always have a list so I can refer to it whenever I’m shopping and usually try to tick an item off the list before adding something to it again. Having an idea of what I actually need as opposed to just shopping based on what’s caught my eye has really helped stop many an impulse purchase.

Wait 24 hours

If you can do this it’s really a useful tactic. I do it all the time because whenever I see something I like in a store I’ll most likely have the girls and won’t have the time to try something on. So I wait until I can get to the shop again on my own (at least 24 hours) and If I’m still thinking about whatever I saw I’ll try it on and decide whether to buy it or not. I adopt the same principle for online buys. I’ll pop something in my shopping cart, sleep on it then revisit again the next day. Usually waiting gives me the time to mull a purchase over and determine if it’s a worthwhile addition to my wardrobe.

Have a set budget

It’s amazing what a limited shopping budget can do to reign in unnecessary purchases. If you’ve give yourself a set amount to spend on wardrobe buys, you’ll be much more likely to consider potential buys a lot more carefully. So instead of just picking up a top or pair of earrings and buying it because you like it that second, you’ll stop and take a moment to decide whether you really do want it or whether you’d rather direct your hard earned dollars to something you absolutely want.

What’s an impulse buy that you’ve regretted?