Balmain Barmy

Having been promoted by worldwide fashion elites from as early as May this year, it came as no surprise that the H&M x Balmain collaboration was going to be the most popular one to date. The collection not only put fashion lovers in a spin for months on end hoping to bag a Balmain bargain, but also those that wanted the chance to feel part of the exclusive ‘Balmain Army’ living life as “#squadgoals.” There is no doubt that many shoppers took inspiration from Kim Kardashian West, who is an avid wearer of the brand, and good friend of designer, Olivier Rousteing. Along with advertisement from the rest of the Kardashian/Jenner clan, as well as a music video and various catwalk shows, the build-up contributed to it being the fastest selling HM designer collaboration, selling out online and in-store (to many people’s dismay) within a couple of hours.

The intricate women’s collection featured 69 unique pieces, consisting of an array of heavily embellished dresses, faux fur leather jackets, beaded blouses and blazers, velvet trousers, and gold costume jewellery. Using the distinguishable Balmain black and gold colour scheme, Rousteing also sleeked up the collection with monochrome, hints of red, navy and dark green. A few products also slightly mirrored colours that were used in the 2013 Versace x H&M collaboration, including the pink beaded dress and silk blouse, as well as the neon green sequin dress. Despite minor criticism over stock volumes and technical difficulties online, Olivier deserved every success with this extraordinary, incredibly detailed women’s collection, and in the opinion of many fashion writers, has exceeded former designer partnerships by miles.


hm x balmain

In previous years, I haven’t been totally invested in the H&M collaborations. I can appreciate the designs, and hard work that must have gone into creating such a thing, but nothing got my bones rattling unlike this batch of Balmain. So in preparation the night before the big release, I set my alarm in anticipation for 8am, giving myself plenty of time to be up, ready and raring to log on to the H&M website. My subconscious must have been working overtime as I woke up immediately at 5 in the morning, anxiously eager to get a head start, and sign on to the website early. I was able to access the page and became almost certain I’d be able to bag the black blazer and devoré scarf that I had been dreaming about for so long. But at 15 minutes to 9, the worst happened, and I was redirected to the ‘try again’ page for no reason at all, which according to various Twitter posts was happening to many customers. From there on, it started my long and extremely agonising wait to try and get back in (much to my neighbours annoyance, there was a lot of screaming). I ended up with four tabs open on my laptop, one on my home computer, and the H&M app on my phone. It is safe to say that if I had earned a penny for every click I made on ‘try again’, I could’ve purchased the whole collection. After an hour solid of refreshing, I accepted that there would be none left for me, so I decided to move on with my life, and went to watch the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, dreaming of the day where I could afford official Balmain.

At around 11am, I thought I would try my luck one last time, this time around checking the H&M website on my phone. Through nothing other than sheer luck, I was directed straight through to the Balmain page. I had excitement in the pit of my stomach like a child searching the Argos catalogue at Christmas, especially when I saw the products I wanted were still available! Unfortunately, by the time I got through to the checkout my blazer and scarf had sold out, which is no surprise considering their great value, but at this point I had accepted it was unlikely on getting the blazer. Nevertheless, I was lucky enough to purchase my other favourites, consisting of the black and white ribbed skirt, black velvet T-shirt, and bottle green suede clutch.



Fast-forward to this week and my products arrived, and I couldn’t have opened the box quick enough! The skirt is insanely gorgeous; any dream of getting a Kimmy K hourglass shape and booty has become a reality. It fits me like a glove, pulling in at the waist and ending at a flattering length just on the knee. The fabric is high quality, and in all, is of great value at £39.99. The clutch, priced at £24.99, is exceptionally reasonable for real leather/suede. It is a lot smaller than I anticipated, but I guess it would be the perfect size for Christmas parties, with more than enough space to fit money and makeup in. The top is also a great purchase, and again, very reasonable at £24.99. From what I could tell by the website, this product and the white T-shirt were extremely popular and sold like wildfire, especially to those that didn’t want to spend too much on the colab, but wanted a piece of the collection. It’s simple with just the brand embossed across the front in velvet, but it can easily be dressed up or down, depending on how you feel. I love love love them!


Balmain T Shirt

One thing that should be mentioned is how truly disgusting it is that many were able to purchase products, only to get them straight onto eBay within minutes, and selling for triple the price. Those kinds of people are awful, greedy human beings, and it is so unfair for those than genuinely wanted something from the collection. I really do not understand how some sellers managed to get an array of products, and in each and every size going – it should be against the law of fashion! For those that didn’t get their hands on any, my heart goes out to you, #firstworldproblems right? I will thoroughly enjoy my items, and can confirm I will not be wasting them by putting them up for sale on eBay. They are classic pieces that I can keep and enjoy for a long time.

It’ll be extremely interesting to see what designer will be in the line up for next year’s partnership with H&M. So far rumours are flying around that it could potentially be Moschino, Saint Laurent, Chloé or Marc Jacobs. My money would be on a Jeremy Scott takeover, but it would be amazing to see a Saint Laurent stint in stores, we will just have to wait and see once the hype of this has died down. But for now a round of applause, and huge congratulations to Olivier Rousteing for such an amazing, and beautifully designed collection. Here’s looking forward to next year’s collaboration!

A fresh start… part 456850

Welcome to the redevelopment of my blog! Time and time again I have resorted to explaining why I have not posted in so long, but after one hell of a final year at university, and an incredible summer in the United States – I have the perfect excuse.

Now with time to spare, and having a flick through my archives of old blog posts, I think it is fair to say to myself that some were a little immature, and not the kind of thing I would want associated when applying for jobs nowadays. The time had definitely more than come to have a good old clear out, and rebrand my WordPress as something I would be proud of going forwards into my career. — Saying that, I am not disappointed in any of the posts. They may be a little (a lot!) cringeworthy, but it was all part of the development in my writing practice, just simply laying the foundations down for how I write today.

Partnered with some amazing work experience with companies including ITV, Heat magazine and my local newspaper, the Bournemouth Echo, I feel that my writing has become a lot more refined, and I think I have definitely found my particular niche. Now more than ever, I am entirely comfortable changing up the style or tone depending on what particular media platform I am writing for.

I am also extremely proud to say I will be graduating my Multimedia Journalism degree with a 2:1 classification, something which I never thought would be achievable. After three years of blood, sweat and tears, a few near misses, and a thousand breakdowns, I completed the unimaginable. If I was told I would be in this position five years ago, I probably wouldn’t believe it, so big up to me for getting my shit together!

The current goal as of present is to 1)  find myself a job which I love and am passionate about, 2) appreciate life….and 3) start paying off my university debt. DAMN. And regarding this blog, it’s out with some of the old, and in with the new. Enjoy!

The good, the bad, and the golden

As dawn approached in England this morning, pictures started to emerge of the red carpet fashion from this years Golden Globe awards. I was awake all night as I kept dreaming about buying furniture after a day of hell at IKEA, so I decided to use my time wisely and have a long look at some amazing and not so amazing dresses. No, I may not have an extensive knowledge about the fashion world, and I don’t really have any place in saying what isn’t great, but I have devised my top five favourite and top five least favourite looks from the night. Unfortunately, due to copyright issues I am unable to publish pictures alongside, but if you are unaware of who I am talking about, then give it a quick Google and you will soon see.

1) To begin with, despite what most people seem to be thinking, my absolute favourite outfit of the night was Emma Watson strutting her stuff in Christian Dior. I think she looked totally incredible, and I loved the quirkiness of the outfit with the backless bright red gown, the black trousers and navy heel. By the sounds of it, Emma seems to have hit the bottom of the best-dressed list over in the States, whilst fashion worshippers over the pond love her unique style, and I agree. This would be a prime example of an outfit that I’d personally want to wear if I was to ever hit the red carpet, although I would never look half as good!

2) My second favourite outfit was the stunning Sofia Vergara in an equally stunning Zac Posen floor length, black ball gown. It accentuated all her best features, including some ridiculously toned arms! Despite changing for a GG after-party, (I don’t know why she did, if I ever wore that dress I’d never take it off… ever), Sofia looked just as amazing in a revealing Zuhair Murad metallic fishtail dress.

3) In third place is the gorgeous Maria Menounos in Max Azria Atelier. Opposite to Emma Watson, it seems that the reaction to Maria’s dress over here is not as great as it is in America, however; I completely beg to differ with us Brits. The cheeky cutouts on this beautifully shaped dress creates the perfect ratio of daring to darling in this look. The colour suits her so well and the simple ponytail does not take anything away from the dress, keeping the whole look elegant. I just think she looks completely gorgeous and I need this dress in my life.

4) Zoe Saldana takes forth place in my ranks out of last night’s looks. With everything going on, this fitted Prabal Gurung dress should technically be wrong, but it is so incredibly right. The highly detailed embellishments, the contrasting pink off-the-shoulder silk straps, and the transparent skirt all add to the uniqueness of the outfit, which has been paired with Louboutin heels and Lorraine Schwartz jewels. For some strange reason, I could just imagine Carrie Bradshaw/Sarah-Jessica Parker wearing this dress in an episode of Sex and the City.

5) My final favourite look was from 12 Years a Slave star, Lupita Nyong’o, wearing a totally unique caped, red Ralph Lauren dress. Personally, I would never wear this dress because I wouldn’t have the gonads to do so, and it is made for Lupita so perfectly; but I appreciate how extremely well designed this dress is. (I know Ralph Lauren would be so pleased to have my approval). Matched with her short hair and simple gold jewellery, this girl looks so effortlessly beautiful.

Now for the bad bit – my not so favourite looks. I hate to say negative things about the outfits because I’d never even be able to afford one of these dresses – but I’m speaking as if I had to go to a red carpet event, and these would not be any of the dresses I’d wear. Sorry!

1) I haven’t heard of Girls until recently, but even so Lena Dunham’s bright yellow Zac Posen dress is pretty heavy on the eyes. She admitted to not exactly dieting in the run up to the big show, stating that she actually ate a thick patty of hamburger meat like a cavewoman, which probably isn’t the greatest idea before putting on a tight bodice. For someone that is supposed to be BFF-ing with Victoria Beckham at the moment, she clearly hasn’t picked up any style tips. If you want to do yellow justice, then wear a gown like Big Bang Theory’s Melissa Rauch’s dress made by Romona Keveza.

2) I really do hate to say it because it’s Dior, one of my all-time favourite designers, and also Jennifer Lawrence, one of the best actresses on the planet right now; but this really does not work in anyway whatsoever. It looks like someone attempted to kidnap her with Gaffer tape mid-wedding, but failed to do so, leaving a very unflattering wedding dress. Unfortunately, social networkers are already mocking her internationally, taking pictures of themselves in a rolled-up duvet. For someone like Jennifer with a lovely figure, it seems a shame to hide it behind a frumpy, shapeless dress, but I suppose she does like to bend the norm, so if she likes it, then kudos to her!

3) My third choice is utter bullocks, (sorry I couldn’t help myself). Sandra Bullock has done extremely well so far in the ranks of awards, and is set to win many more, but this Prabal Gurung dress is not going to win in my charts anytime soon. It’s a bit too ‘try hard’ different, so much so, that it doesn’t work in any shape or form – probably because the dress has neither. Also, the poor design and colouring of this dress looks like something that could have been made in my A-Level Textiles class, but then again that would be an insult to us. Despite this, I do love her hair and makeup, and admittedly, she looks incredible for her age.

4) Paula Patton comes forth in her white Stephane Rolland dress with ruffled draping. It’s not the worse dress in the world, but for someone with such an amazing body, she could wear so much better. The dress would look miles nicer if it didn’t have that draping down the right-hand side. Her jewellery is gorgeous and she genuinely looks stunning, however; this dress is a no.

5) In fifth place is Drew Barrymore with her Monique Lhuillier gown, which to me, alongside the baby bump, flowers and long trail, slightly resembled Kim Kardashian’s Givenchy’s dress at the Met Ball last year… no comment. But hey she’s pregnant. If I ever look that pretty whilst up the duff then I’d be extremely happy.

Overall, my views on some particular designers like Christian Dior, Zac Posen and Prabal Gurung seemed to vary. Nevertheless, there were hundreds of lovely outfits seen last night and were very few terrible outfits – even some of the dresses mentioned above aren’t hideous, but just not up there with the standards of some other gowns. This is only an opinion and I guess everyone will think differently, as everyone has their own unique style.

Let me know if you agree or disagree with anything in this post!

fernsig2

Start of Fall clothes haul

Due to my lack of money and monthly-only pay cheques, I found myself extremely strapped for cash in August. I was feeling slightly down because I’m a self-confessed shopaholic and find it extremely difficult to not spend money. I get a real thrill to enter those 4 digits of my pin, even if it is for a pack of chewing gum – yes I probably do need professional help.  So when August’s pay cheque came through, and my hard work slaving away throughout summer paid off; I thought I’d treat myself to a few little purchases to cheer myself up and get my Autumn wardrobe ready. Some of them were splurges (cough, Topshop, cough), but the others were sale bargains, so I don’t feel as bad about what is left of my wages.

To begin with – my Topshop purchases. I am absolutely in love with everything in Topshop at the moment. I wasn’t keen on anything in store during Spring and Summer; but since they’ve bought in their Autumn collection, I just can’t help but be obsessed with every single thing, especially products in the ‘Margot’s World’ trend.

The first item purchased was this beautiful, yellow and white polka-dot shirt. My eyes were drawn immediately to this item due to the amazing colour. Usually, I don’t tend to wear yellow because of the fact I’m quite pale and blonde, so it doesn’t suit my skin tone, but I just couldn’t not buy this. I think it is something that can be worn by anyone, and with anything! So far, I’ve worn it on a night out with a black mini dress, a gold necklace and gold shoes; but I really do want to buy myself some pale boyfriend jeans to pair it with a little white top.

Topshop blouse

Secondly, I bought myself the black and white ‘Mesh T-Shirt all-in-one’ jumpsuit. Again, jumpsuits aren’t something I normally wear but I find that this item is really flattering for my hourglass shape as it is ruched in at the waist and then has a bit more extra fabric around the thigh area. The fabric is 95% viscose and 5% elastane, so it is so comfortable, and barely creases at all. Also, I am an absolute lover of anything monochrome, so this item – to me – is perfect. Another thing that I love about this jumpsuit is that it can either be dressed up for a night out, for example, with a pair of white heels, or in the daytime with a pair of Converse. It’s so forgiving and draws attention to all the right places. Definitely 5 stars for this item!

topshop jumpsuit

The next item I bought was this Accessorize necklace. I may be a tad bias because I do work for Accessorize, and it’s probably the reason I have no money because of my amazing 70% discount(!), but as soon as I saw this on the shop floor I had to buy it – I have worn it so much since and there are no regrets! Originally it was £25 but because of my discount I paid £7.50. It goes perfectly with pretty much anything and just adds a bit more glamour to an outfit. Accessorize really does have some fabulous jewellery and bags in at the moment, and I can’t wait to see our shop filled with more as Christmas arrives.

accz neck

My final purchase was this gorgeous Chanel inspired zip jacket. I have been searching high and low for something like this for ages, so that I could wear it for Autumn/Winter with a pair of jeans and boots as it looks so expensive and chic. I managed to grab this in Miss Selfridge for only £18. It was the only one there and in my size, so it was literally meant to be. I think it could also look cute over a little dress either for daytime or night time. It’s a real classic and essential piece for anyone’s wardrobe. Maybe one day if I manage to actually save some money I could buy myself a real Chanel jacket. …..Dream on!

chanel inspired jacket

I definitely won’t be splurging any more money on clothes anytime soon, but it was good to finally get my autumn wardrobe going considering how cold its got! I’ve added links onto the pictures where possible.

May favourites..

This month has been a bit of hit and miss weather wise, which I suppose is good thing during my exam period, however; the weather I wanted was the wrong way round (which is typical). At the start of the month I was doing some hardcore law revision in the sunshine and having major hay-fever attacks where I thought at one point I was going to lose my sight, and by the 12th, (my birthday) it was torrential rain all day, which is highly unusual for this time of year. Nevertheless, it’s not stopped me thoroughly enjoying some beauty favs; some of which I have bought, and others which I received as gifts for my Birthday.

First and foremost is Marc Jacobs Daisy Sunshine Eau de Toilette 50ml

Daisy

This perfume smells absolutely amazing. Unfortunately, I ran out of my Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue, which is my strong scent I like wearing in evenings (mentioned it in previous spring tag blog), so I wanted to replace it with another as Light Blue, I find, is quite a scent suited for winter. On a recent trip to Boots, however, I noticed that this limited edition perfume had 20% off, which is always appreciated! I’ve always been a fan of Marc Jacobs Lola and admittedly, I’m a sucker for great packaging so loved them even more because of the lids, it just makes it that more appealing, so when I saw this offer I knew I had to buy it. This perfume oozes summer and is a perfect scent to wear at any time of day. There is a strong scent of citrus with a hint of flowers, and reminded me of Escada Pacific Paradise that I have worn summer a couple of years ago. It is long-lasting and I have worn it every day since I purchased it. It is limited edition and there is still a 20% discount so for a 50ml bottle you can purchase it for £36 instead of £45.

Secondly, is Mac Lip Pencil in Dervish.

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I only bought this lip pencil yesterday, but I know this is going to be one of my summer favourites. I wanted a lip pencil which is pretty much the same colour as my lips – but better. I know people may not see it but I have slight lip discoloration from an accident when I was two years old. I smashed my lip open on a radiator and had to have microsurgery to stitch my lip up back together. Considering the scale of the accident, I’m surprised my lip wasn’t left completely mashed up, but luckily has only left a white scar, however; I can notice when doing my makeup, if i leave my lips clean they do not look as full as they could. Therefore, using this I am able to fill my lips out whilst  maintaining a natural look – perfect!

This third product is something that I have sworn by for the past six years. It is the Garnier Ambre Solaire Dry Face Mist.

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I use it during the winter when I’m feeling pale, and I use it even more as the summer months begin to near and I want to get a head start with my tan. I put it on at night after cleaning my face, and then by the time I wake up in the morning, I have a natural, streak free face and neck tan! It is simple to use, doesn’t leave strange streaks on the face and is still natural looking.

Now my next product isn’t a beauty one, but fashion! It’s a yellow and white clutch bag from Primark.

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I haven’t used this bag yet as I haven’t been able to go out because of revision! But I just know it’s going to come in very handy over the summer, due to the pastel colours which will match most things! I’m hoping to buy a few more as Primark offer a great selection. I’ve been fed up of using m bog-standard black studded shoulder bag so I’m going to try buy a few more to brighten up my outfits!

Cath kidston products are amazing. I’m loving this seasons new floral pattern, especially in this Washbag and Padded Coat Hangers.

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I received these as gifts off my Mum and I love them. I’ve always been a huge fan of theirs and love how every season they bring in new patterns. The washbag is going to be perfect for when I go away and I have used the padded hangers for my coats!

My favourite nail polish at the moment is the OPI Lacquer Nail Polish in ‘a good man-darin is hard to find’. 

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My nails have grown out a lot at the moment so I want to use loads of colours! But this nail polish is one of the most long-lasting and vibrant polish’s I’ve ever used so there is no need to constantly change it. I’m also obsessed with orange so this matches most of my outfits at the moment!

My favourite skin scrub is the St. Ives Blemish Fighting Apricot Scrub.

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This is another item I swear by. I use it every time I shower and makes my skin feel silky smooth. It actually has kept spots and blemishes away from my face at the moment and smells amazing! It lasts a long time and is worth every penny.

Finally, is the Cath Kidston Blossom Set.

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These are two other products that I received as gifts. I’m not a big fan of using non-sensitive products because I have sensitive skin, however, these Blossom shower gel and body lotion have been very kind to my skin. They both smell like talcum powder which I love the smell of, and are very gentle to the skin. I’ve never used Cath Kidston beauty products before but after trialing these two I will be definitely using them again.

I hope you enjoyed reading about my May beauty fav’s and you may share a few of them! Let me know what you think below, and all products have links to a webpage where you can purchase them.

Products included:

Marc Jacobs Daisy Sunshine Eau de Toilette 50ml

Mac Lip Pencil in Dervish.

Garnier Ambre Solaire Dry Face Mist.

Yellow and White Clutch Bag from Primark.

Cath Kidston Washbag & Padded Coat Hangers.

OPI Lacquer Nail Polish in ‘a good man-darin is hard to find‘.

St. Ives Blemish Fighting Apricot Scrub

Cath Kidston Blossom Set.