Browsing Tag

wardrobe tips

Fashion

How to perfect the comfortable and chic work from home outfit

6th April, 2020

Perfecting the work from home outfit takes a lot of experimentation and a little trial and error. When I first began working from home after working in an office for so long I had to try and strike the right balance between sitting in my pyjamas the whole day and putting on my usual work outfits and feeling very overdressed. I knew I wanted to get dressed as if I was going somewhere as I found it helped boost my productivity and helped get me in the right frame of mind but I also wanted to take advantage of one of the perks of working from home, which is being able to dress in comfortable clothes. So, how to get it right? Here are a few of my tips.

Have an outfit formula

This is a good place to start if you’re feeling a little overwhelmed by the fact your entire wardrobe has suddenly opened up to you as office options. If you’re generally used to wearing a suit to work, the fact sweats are suddenly not a no-no can make it tricky to decide what to wear. So it’s a good idea to have an outfit formula that you can revert to when you’re stuck. For example one comfortable piece + one polished piece + one accessory = work outfit sorted. You can tweak this to work with your own style and what you feel great in.

Opt for comfortable staples

One of the best parts of working from home is being able to wear comfy pieces. Think a cosy knit, jeans or a classic white shirt or a jumpsuit to add a fun fashion element. Also choose fabrics carefully. You want breathable fabrics like cotton, linen and wool which will feel great to wear all day. These pieces will form the building blocks of most of your looks so be sure to be well stocked so getting dressed in the morning for work is a no-brainer.

Jeans and a white shirt is a great WFH uniform

Pair basics with polished pieces

Just because you’re aiming for comfort it doesn’t mean you can’t add something to maintain an element of polish. For example a great blazer over the top of a white tee and jeans feels put together but will still be perfect for a day of working from home. While a cosy cardi looks great with a simple, but sleek slip dress. It’s about the high-low mix.

Have a dress code

Implement a home office dress code for yourself. You want to give yourself some parameters to work in, which will in turn make choosing your outfits in the morning easier. For example perhaps track pants are out but a comfy leather legging or mum jean is in. It’s all about what helps you feel productive and signals that it’s time for work not play.

Accessories are your friend

Add accessories

As with most outfits, accessories are a fun way to inject a little personality into them. The addition of a silk scarf with jeans and a denim for example will instantly elevate it, making it look chic and polished. While understated jewellery can help your outfit feel a little more finished.

Embrace flats or a block heel

Shoes tend to be optional when working from home but if you do want to go for a full outfit then definitely embrace a beautiful flat or a comfy block heels. Shoes such as a leather loafer or a ballet flat are perfect for staying in. But if you’re a heels girl through and through, perhaps park the stiletto for another time and become friends with the comfy block heel—there’s no better time than now to truly embrace comfortable dressing.

Fashion

Great alternatives to try when you’re tired of wearing jeans

18th March, 2020

I wholeheartedly admit that I’m in jeans a lot of the time but there are times when I look in my wardrobe and think that I want to be comfortable but I just don’t feel like putting denim on. A great pair of jeans is always a failsafe option, but sometimes I just want to mix it up and try something else without having to compromise on comfort. So, what do I do then? Well I have a go-to alternatives to jeans that are equally as stylish, effortless and perfect for days on the go…

Culottes

I’ve found that the billowy, relaxed silhouette of a pair of culottes such as the pair above is one of the comfiest things you can wear. Wear them with a shirt or tee, tucked in or out, and pair with everything from sneakers to heels, slides or flats. So versatile and effortless too.

Cropped chinos

Chinos have always been a handy staple to have but a cropped version of the style feels a lot fresher and more modern. You can easily dress them up or down which makes them ideal for workwear or a relaxing weekend.

Tapered jogger

These have all the comfort of a pair of tracksuit pants but infinitely more stylish. A tapered jogger looks great for days when you want to wear something simple and unfussy yet remain stylish and comfortable at the same time. You can easily throw on a great knit or pop on a casual trench over them and look put together.

Leggings are one way to look stylish and be comfortable at the same time

Leggings

I live in leather leggings throughout winter as I’ve found them so easy to wear with everything in my closet. I can easily pair them with a blazer or a knit and be ready to walk out the door with minimum fuss. If leather leggings aren’t your thing, I think the silhouette is still great in other fabrications, just be sure to look for a thick, sturdy material that will retain its shape. If there’s one thing that’s a no-no it’s saggy leggings.

Midi skirt

When I’m in the mood for something a little more feminine but still equally as comfortable I opt for a midi skirt. One of my favourites is a knitted midi skirt which I’ve found to be really wearable and perfect for days on the go. It’s a great way to do casual dressing in a more elevated way.

Wide leg pants

I’m a huge fan of wide leg pants simply because they’re effortlessly stylish, making them an easy option when I want to style an outfit quickly. That said, there’s nothing quite as comfortable as a pair of billowy pants so I would definitely recommend them when you want something super easy to wear, that still looks polished.

A midi skirt is a feminine way to do casual dressing, and is such a versatile staple to have
Fashion

Fashion habits to adopt for great style

23rd February, 2020

Who’s your style icon? I have a number of women whose style I admire and whilst they may make it look effortless, I’ve found that often the thing with looking stylish is it doesn’t have to be difficult—as long as you have a few key things in place. If you get into the habit of doing a few things regularly then you can instantly make walking out the door looking polished and pulled together a whole lot easier.

Planning outfits

I’m betting if you’ve ever really loved someone’s look it’s because everything works and there’s cohesion. The shoes work with the outfit, the bag is in keeping with the colour palette… it all just works. And to do this isn’t hard, it just requires putting in the effort of doing a little outfit planning. If you stop and put together a few outfits ahead of time, whether it’s the night before or you do a weekly styling session, you take that hurried mad dash for clothing out of the equation, which is when outfits tend to go awry.

Doing a tight edit

I think an outfit always has to have an individual element but also a considered edit that allows everything to work together. So always think about striking a balance and ensure that no elements are competing with each other but are instead complementing one another.

Adding one special piece

Aim to incorporate one standout piece when styling an outfit. It could be a great pair of earrings, a beautiful bag or a striking top, but whatever it is, ensure that it’s the kind of thing that can elevate a look.

Ensuring everything is in good condition

One of the things that can let an outfit down is if anything looks a little worn or shabby. Get into the habit of checking you clothes for damage so that you can get onto repairs straight away or replace it if need be. Also little things like pilling, discolouration, fading and even tiny stains are all things that can compromise the stylish feel of an outfit so be sure to either attend to the issue or phase it out of your wardrobe.

Wearing the right undergarments

The right underwear is so important to the overall finish of a look. A rogue bra strap under a cami, or underwear that’s the wrong colour under what you’re wearing are all things that can make you look less than pulled together. Invest in quality undergarments from bras to slips and underwear (including Spanx if you want a smooth finish under certain clothes) and you’re already ticking all the style boxes.

Aim for the right fit

Bid adieu to clothes that don’t fit perfectly. If it can be repaired then get them altered straight away. If not, then it’s time to donate them to charity so someone else can enjoy them. Also those “someday” clothes you’re saving? It’s time to farewell those too and instead focus on clothes that work for you now. You deserve to look nothing less than stylish after all.

Fashion

The key to timeless style

16th February, 2020

Crisp white suiting always looks chic

Classic, timeless style is one thing I always aspire to. I like to keep my looks on trend but with an overarching sense of polish and generally don’t venture too far from what I know and love. One of the main reasons I do this is because it ensures the longevity of my wardrobe. If I stick to pieces that I believe will last the test of time I won’t have to update them as often and I can guarantee my favourites will have plenty of outings ahead. Having adopted this as my approach to shopping and how I dress for many years, and also observing the stylish women in my life whose ensembles just don’t seem to ever date, here’s what I consider to be the building blocks of having a look that will endure the years to come.

Scrimp on trend buys

I love purchasing trendy items as much as the next person but I keep them to a minimum. If I like the look of the signature silhouette or colour of the season I will buy a select few pieces and work them back with what’s already in my closet. I avoid wearing one trend from head to toe and like to give it my own spin.

Embrace timeless fabrics and prints

There are certain prints and fabrications that won’t date. Polka dots, stripes and plaid have remained in the mix most seasons and will add a fun touch to any outfit that won’t look dated. Long-lasting fabrics such as tweed, silk, wool and cashmere are worth adding to your wardrobe as they really stand up well to the wear and tear of constant use.

A classic black bag is definitely worth the splurge

Invest in classic pieces

Think of the pieces that have been around for ages and have remained a constant and they’re likely to be things like a black blazer, a white button down shirt, denim jeans and the little black dress and a simple black bag. These are the wardrobe buys that are worth investing in as they’re not going away any time soon.

Tailor your clothes

Ill-fitting clothes will make you look unkempt so it’s best to invest in tailoring pieces so they perfectly fit. Find a good tailor and have things taken in or up or out, depending on your needs, to ensure that whatever you’re wearing fits you like a glove. A perfectly tailored outfit just screams timeless style.

Know what suits your body shape

Learn to pinpoint the styles and silhouettes that work with your shape. Go on a shopping expedition and try on a few different silhouettes in key staples such as pants, tops, skirts and dresses and see what works. Be brutally honest. If what you see doesn’t put a smile on your face then keep searching until you find something that does. Once you’ve pinpointed what works for you then you’ll have a handful of go-to styles that you can always come back to time and time again.

Who do you think has timeless style?

Fashion

What I’ve stopped wearing in my 30s

1st February, 2020

My style, like most women, has evolved as I’ve gotten older. There are things that I wore when I was younger that I probably wouldn’t even consider now because of changes in lifestyle i.e not practical when chasing after two little girls and because my tastes have matured, there are simply pieces I just don’t think are right for me anymore.

Whilst I’ve given up wearing a few different styles, on the flip side, there are certain things in my wardrobe which are now ideal for where I’m at in life and I wear them non-stop. It’s a style evolution and I think it’s one that I’ve happily embraced and has allowed me to discover the new Kate. Reflecting on it, here’s what I’ve firmly left behind in my 20s and those that I’ve welcomed with open arms in my 30s…

The things I’ve stopped wearing

Sky high stilettos

When I was in my 20s I was working as a fashion editor and was either in an office or out at events so my look had to work around this accordingly. As such I used to be happy to walk around in stilettos all day. I used to wear them all day, everyday and looking back, I’m not sure how I even managed that. My poor feet!

Fussy outfits

Upon reflection I used to wear a lot of outfits that I’d have to adjust all the time to look perfect. Whether it was a particular neckline or a certain dress style, I’d constantly be fixing myself up. As you can imagine I can’t do that now so when it comes to my looks I steer clear of anything that remotely requires fussing about.

Short hemlines

When I was younger I used to wear lots of ultra minis and short shorts. Why not when you can get away with it, right? These days if I was to wear something of a short-ish length I’d probably do a more understated, conservative blouse up the top, whereas I might have done something with a plunging neckline in my 20s.

The things I now wear to death

Flat shoes 

My motto is comfort, comfort, comfort. So unless I’m going to a big event I’ll often be in flats. Styles like loafers, sneakers and slides are now my go-to. I think flats have evolved a lot and are now equally as stylish as a pair of high heels so I’m happy to be in them all the time.

Structured pieces

Shirts and blazers are key pieces in my look. I like things that are comfortable yet can look polished at the same time. They’re also really versatile and can be worn with myriad pieces in my closet, which is a must as I like to have a tightly edited wardrobe nowadays.

High quality staples

I probably spend more on key purchases now than I did in my 20s simple because I now appreciate why quality is often better than quantity. I’m always willing to splurge on things such as a classic designer bag or a pair of leather pants which I know I’ll wear to death and will be good value for money.

Understated silhouettes

Maxi and midi lengths and long, flowy styles are now favourites of mine. I have more fun playing with those lengths than I do with anything that’s tight and short. I’ve also found myself gravitating more towards one piece swimsuits than bikinis this summer. I think those styles just simply flatter my shape more.

Accessories

I like to play with accessories a lot more. I have my accessories which I wear day in and day out have great sentimental value to me such as my watch, wedding and engagement ring and a gold antique medallion that my dad gave to me. However I also like to add the occasional statement earring to elevate an outfit. I’ve learned that accessories really can make an outfit.

What are some style lessons you’ve learnt in your 30s? What are some things you’ve firmly left behind in your 20s?
Fashion

Fashion New Year’s resolutions that are actually worth keeping

1st January, 2020

The start of a new year is always the perfect time to make a few resolutions. And whilst going to the gym regularly and ensuring you get more sleep are definitely goals worth pursuing it’s also worth noting that reassessing your style is also one area in your life that might be worth reevaluating. Considering the fact you have to deal with your wardrobe every single day it makes sense to ensure that it’s working for you as best as possible to guarantee that only do you look and feel great everyday, but also to avoid having to contend with regular style meltdowns to get there. To help you get started here are a few sartorial new year’s resolutions that are definitely worth adopting…

Invest in the best quality pieces you can afford

Think about the workhorses of your wardrobe, the items that are constantly on rotation. Are they well made and built to last? If the answer is no, then it’s time to make a conscious effort to invest a little more in the clothes that you wear all the time to ensure longevity. This means things like a beautiful coat, a flattering pair of go-to jeans and an LBD. These are the building blocks of a functional wardrobe, and once you’ve found pieces that work and that you love, you need to ensure they will be around for a long time.

Have a fail-safe outfit combination

For those times when a fashion crisis hits it’s important to have at least one outfit combination to turn to that you know is guaranteed to work no matter what. This will obviously differ according to your individual style. A structured dress and classic flats may work for one person whilst a pair of jeans, tee and a blazer may work for someone else. The key is pinpointing what makes you look good every single time you wear it, then have it at the back of your mind as a back up for those times when you’re feeling uninspired.

Keep your wardrobe organised

It really is easier to get dressed when you can see everything in you closet. Being able to assess what you own at a glance can often make pulling together a look a faster process as you avoid wasting time trying to find a long lost t-shirt or the skirt you wore last weekend but now can’t find. I keep my wardrobe organised like this but it’s important to come up with a system that is easy for you to maintain. To avoid having to do epic clean ups make a point of putting things away as soon as you get home at the end of the day as that way your closet stays neat all the time.

Embrace outfit planning

Yes it does require a bit more time and effort but making a point of organising your outfits ahead of time can help you avoid throwing everything you own on the floor in a panic every morning. If you really want to be ultra organised invest in a rack that you can hang the week’s ensembles on, ironed and ready to go. There’s actually something quite satisfying about seeing your clothes nicely lined up within easy stress-free reach.

Take at least one fashion risk a month

It’s great to have a clear idea of your style but sometimes you can stumble upon new looks simply by making a conscious effort to think outside the box. Eschew your favourite pieces one day a month and pull out pieces that you rarely wear and see how you can make them work. This could also mean wearing a vibrant shade you wouldn’t usually turn to or accessories that you usually only wear with a specific look. You may find an outfit combination you never knew you always wanted.

Shop more consciously 

This takes willpower but stopping yourself from buying something simply because you’ve seen a sale email pop up in your inbox or spotted a dress in a window can often lead to a more wearable wardrobe. Considered shopping ensures that everything you own is something that you love and will work back with what’s already sitting in your closet. By making this your shopping mantra it also saves you wasting your money on pieces you’ll only wear once and instead allow you to direct funds to purchasing quality and timeless items that will get constant use.

What are your style resolutions in 2020?
Fashion, Fashion & Beauty

The essentials you’ll need for party season

25th November, 2019

If it hasn’t kicked off already then it will in the coming weeks, as party season is well and truly on its way. I’ve got to attend a number of events for work in the lead up to Christmas and it has got me thinking about even dressing. I know it can become quite a costly exercise having to pull together a new look for every occasion. That’s why I firmly believe that if you start with the basics then you’ll be able to rotate those pieces around to create new looks, while working with existing pieces in your wardrobe. These are the essentials of dressing through the festive season.

A great clutch

Whether you’re attending the office Christmas party or drinks with friends, it’s always a good idea to have one standout clutch on hand. I prefer statement clutches — those with a bold colour or punchy print so it can act as an accent piece to the rest of my look.

Carry all your part essentials in a statement clutch

A pair of classic heels

If you’re planning on attending a range of different events then it can be quite cost effective to invest in one pair of heels that will work with myriad looks. For example the black heels that I’m wearing below have worked with so many different outfits, in various styles and colours and as such I’ve been able to wear them several times. Instead of trying to source multiple shoes for different events, try finding a simple style that’s a bit of a style chameleon.

Simple, elegant party shoes will take you through myriad events

A pair of statement earrings

I don’t often wear huge jewellery, favouring simpler, delicate pieces but I do believe that a pair of statement earrings can really dress up a look. They don’t have to be huge but just a style that’s a little bit interesting, a little bit different and have a sense of boldness to them.

A pair of statement earrings is an easy way to dress up a look

A little black dress

The LBD is the MVP of any party season wardrobe. Invest in a single black dress that you absolutely love and wear it to death by switching up your accessories and footwear each time. The key is to keep it quite understated and simple, avoid huge embellishments or detail if you want the dress to be quite versatile. Also you can pop on a great blazer or jacket over the top and instantly change the dress’ vibe.

You can rely on a LBD to be worn to multiple occaasions

Beauty, Fashion

Little things that help you look polished all the time

16th November, 2019

Looking polished all the time isn’t simply about an expensive outfit or perfectly applied makeup day in an day out I’ve found it’s often all about paying attention to the tiny details that will ensure your appearance is always on point. I’m constantly around women who have to look polished as part of their work and these are some of the small things I’ve found ensure they look consistently put together…

Neat nails

Unkempt nails will always derail anything else you may have done with your outfit. One of the simplest things you can do is keep your nails tidy – ensure they’re all the same shape and size. Take the time to keep your nails in top shape and while nail polish is always an easy way to pull an outfit together if you’re not a polish person a simple buff and file so they’re neat works too.

Moisturise regularly

Your skin is often one of the first things people notice so make sure you give it some TLC, especially during the winter months. Patches of dry skin never look great so be sure to moisturise religiously.

Clean shoes

Scuffed shoes, scratched heels or shoes that look like they’re on their last legs will always negate any effort you’ve gone to to look nice that day. To avoid this be sure to use waterproof spray on your shoes so they don’t get ruined during inclement weather and repair any shoes as soon as you notice damage so they don’t get worse.

Tidy bag

A clean bag will always add to a polished appearance. I know when you’re carrying around a bag all the time that it can easily get dirty or damaged so be sure to spray any leather with protectant spray to avoid it getting stained. If it’s a canvas bag make sure that you keep an eye out for any stains or marks and attend to them straight away.

Pressed clothes

Walking out the door in wrinkled clothes will leave you looking less than polished. If you hate ironing avoid buying anything that will require you to do any complicated pressing. Even if you tell yourself you’ll get to it, take it from someone who isn’t a fan of ironing you’ll avoid it for as long as you can. An alternative to ironing is to buy a steamer which makes it much easier to get wrinkles out of garments.

What are some ways you stay looking polished?

Fashion, Fashion & Beauty, Shop

Style update: 10 things to add to your spring wardrobe

13th November, 2019

Ah spring. There’s much to love about this time of year as we inch our way closer to summer and the sunnier days that come with it. And whilst we’re just getting through the tricky transseasonal period where it can be hard to decide on what to wear, there are a few key wardrobe additions that will take you through the rest of this season and into the warmer months ahead. Add these to your shopping list and you’ll have your looks sorted in no time.

1. A midi dress

There’s something about a midi dress that’s casual yet polished that I really like. It makes getting dressed easier as all I have to do is pop on a dress, throw on some great accessories and I’m done. If you choose a simple silhouette, you’ll manage to get plenty of wear from one frock which makes it a worthwhile investment.

2 A white tee

I cannot live without a white tee. I’m in one all the time as I can work it back with so many different things, whether it’s my fave jeans or a skirt or shorts. I favour a crew neck t-shirt as it’s so versatile and can work back with myriad looks.

3. A lightweight suit

Suiting is huge right now but understandably anything in a heavy material such as wool might not be ideal when it starts to get really warm. The good news is that there’s plenty of lightweight linen options out there that look oh-so effortless and cool, whilst still being appropriate for the weather.

4. Straw bag

Accessories are my favourite, inexpensive way to make anything in my wardrobe look more up to date. So if you’re on the hunt for one bag that will take you through the next few months look towards the straw bag. It’s fresh, perfect for warm weather and can work back with virtually everything in your wardrobe.

5. Satin skirt

Think a satin skirt like this one which features a hugely on trend animal print and has a simple, yet sexy silhouette. It’s easily matched with your favourite tee and sneakers, or glammed up a little with sandals or heels and a cami. You’ll wear it to death this spring/summer. Promise.

6. Slides

Your spring wardrobe is incomplete without a pair of slides. Luckily there are SO many options available right now. From a super simple pair in black or tan leather, or one that features heavy embellishments, there’s guaranteed to be something that will be worked back with all your looks in the coming months.

7. Mum jeans

I’d suggest trying on a few different pairs to get the right fit but a pair of mum jeans is the denim trend to tap into right now. It’s a relaxed shape which makes it super comfy and perfect for turning into your number one off duty staple.

8. Jumpsuit

A comfy jumpsuit falls into the same easy dressing category as a dress. Throw it on, pop on some accessories and you’re done. I’d look into something in a gorgeous linen which is not only comfortable but is the perfect option for sunny days when you need to wear something that breathes.

9. Co-ord set

A simple two piece set is one of those shortcuts to looking polished that I love. The matching element just screams that you have your look together. Also, the upside is that you can wear them as separates and you essentially have yourself a number of brand new looks.

10. White sneakers

Yes, the humble white sneaker is here to stay. Whether you’re after a designer pair that will impress; a simple canvas option that you can pop on when you’re running errands or an old school fave from classic sneaker brands like Adidas and Nike, there’s simply no way that you won’t wear them to death.

Fashion

Styling trick: statement skirts

19th June, 2019

Skirts are a constant in my wardrobe because they’re so easy to rework into different styles by simply changing up what I pair with them. One thing I’ve found to be a styling shortcut over the last few years has been a statement skirt. Working with a skirt with either a striking feature, an interesting print or a cut can add a certain freshness to a look. Also when paired with the right pieces you can take a skirt from day to night making it an unlikely hit in the versatility department, yet it still packs a sartorial punch. Here are a few ways to work a skirt that’s anything but neutral…

Go flashy

When it comes to statement skirts you really want to go all out sometimes and what’s better than a little lurex? I love the sparkly effect that this skirt has because it’s got so much energy and personality. Sometimes when you’re working with such a piece it means you can relax a little in what you pair with it because you definitely want it to steal the show.

Use it to anchor a look

One of my go-to pairings is a statement skirt with a sweater. Without fail, it always looks polished and chic. And the reason why is because the skirt is such a strong piece that it helps bring everything together. When matched with simple pieces such as a neutral jumper and a classic bag, you’ve got yourself a cohesive look that’s also anything but pedestrian.

Use it as an after dark look

Usually when I think of night events I’ll gravitate towards a dress or these days, a great suit. However don’t forget about a statement skirt! If you can find a beautiful skirt with a standout feature (the sheer effect of the skirt below is what made me gravitate to it) whether it’s an amazing print, next-level embellishment or a sublime colour then you’ve got yourself a piece that can definitely hold its own for an evening occasion.