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31.08.2015- What I Wore Today #229

Monday, 31 August 2015

Remember that weekend a little under a month or so ago when it actually, properly felt like summer? It might seem like a distant recollection now, especially amidst the seemingly never ending spells of rain and overcast skies, but it provided me with one of the only opportunities which I've had this year to dust off some warm weather essentials- and, perhaps more significantly, leave the house without wearing a coat or clinging on to my umbrella for dear life. Whilst there doesn't tend to be all that much variation between my weekday and weekend wardrobes, sometimes it's lovely to embrace lazier days (namely Saturday and Sunday) and relax in some comfortable, casual essentials- for those occasions where pyjamas aren't quite de rigueur...

outfit9thaugust2
Top- Zara
Jeans- c/o F&F
Shoes- Birkenstock (via ASOS)
Bag- Topshop
Sunglasses- Ray-Ban (via John Lewis)

I picked up this top in Zara right back at the start of the spring, and I'm a little bit heartbroken that I've only had call to wear it on a couple of outings so far...typical eh?! Having said that, it's the perfect addition to my burgeoning collection of summer staples, and the brilliant sort of basic piece which will endure from season to season, as well as being an ideal holiday hero too. Speaking of staples, these F&F jeans are another old favourite, and the pair which I tend to reach for when comfort is the order of the day (or, indeed, when I'm planning a big lunch..!) Keeping things fairly paired down, I accessorised with my Topshop backpack and Birkenstocks- which have again only had a handful of outings this year but are essentials which I know I'll be able to stash away until next summer...unless, that is, the temperatures rocket as we head into September...!

Have you had the chance to style any summer wardrobe favourites recently?

(Image credit: Sarah Farrell, please do not reproduce without permission.)

30.08.2015- How To: Making the Most of Fresh Flowers

Sunday, 30 August 2015

There are few things nicer than getting fresh flowers delivered to your doorstep, and regular readers will know that since spending a day at The Covent Garden Academy of Flowers last year, I've become more than a little bit obsessed with making the most of the beautiful blooms I pick up, as well as those which I'm lucky enough to have growing in my garden. At this time of the year, I find myself more eager than ever to prolong the summer months by salvaging as many summer flowers as possible, so when the lovely people at Blossoming Gifts dropped me a line to introduce me to their flower delivery and comparatively cheap flowers, I was delighted to have the opportunity to practice my burgeoning floristry skills again. As well as their gorgeous rose and hydrangea bouquet, I eagerly picked some favourites from the garden too, getting a little bit experimental with some different styling options. If you're tempted to allay your wet weather woes by doing something similar on this rainy Bank Holiday weekend, then keep reading for some top tips on how to keep your blooms looking beautiful...

 
 

Surprisingly enough, I snapped up these Kilner jars from Whittard at the end of last week with flowers in mind- and at only £3 each they really were too pretty to resist. They're the perfect colourful alternative to more traditional vases, and are ideal for displaying shorter stemmed offcuts from the garden as I did here, with some of my favourite hydrangeas, sweetpea and some rescued begonias which ended up a little worse for wear after the showery spells we've experienced of late! As ever, conditioning your blooms is essential to make sure that they last as long as possible, striping away any excess foliage and trimming the stems at a slant to help the flowers take up as much water as they can. Applying the same principles to my bigger bouquet, I rearranged the foliage to form a solid structure for the posy before adding in the beautiful blue hydrangeas and white roses- and over a week later it's still providing a much needed antidote to the gloomy skies! 

If you want to try your hand at road testing some of my tips (or if you just fancy treating yourself!) then Blossoming Gifts are offering 33% off their selection of blooms with the code BGIFTS33- valid on everything but their Flowers by Post range.

What are your floral favourites? 

* I was kindly provided with a bouquet from Blossoming Gifts for review consideration. As ever, my opinions and impressions (as well as my love of all things floral!) are 100% honest. 

(Image credit: Sarah Farrell, please do not reproduce without permission.)

28.08.2015- On the Menu: Café Pistou, Exmouth Market

Friday, 28 August 2015

Discovering new parts of any city is always lovely, but I'm always eager to uncover new pockets of London, particularly as there is still (shamefully!) so much of it which I'm yet to explore. Since my trips to The Modern Pantry and Bourne & Hollingsworth Buildings, I've been eagerly investigating Clerkenwell as a dining-out destination, and a few weeks ago another gem was propelled onto my radar in the shape of Café Pistou:



Tucked away at the end of Exmouth Market, Café Pistou is an adorable bistro style eatery, offering Provençal inspired plates a plenty. I've become a real convert to smaller, sharing dishes of late, particularly as it means that you get to sample lots more of the menu, which is always lovely when there are such flavoursome plates on offer. Particular highlights included the incredible prawns and basil in feuille de brique pastry, delicate vegetable ratatouille and salt cod croquettes, as well as the spatchcocked chicken from the offering of larger plates. Needless to say the chocolate pudding was heavenly too! With incredible brunch and afternoon tea offerings too, I'm sure I'll be heading back imminently! 

Have you uncovered any hidden foodie gems recently? 

(Image credit: Sarah Farrell, please do not reproduce without permission.)
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