Christmas shopping

I LOVE Christmas shopping – even more so since I can be so productive online. I really do try and put some careful thought into gifting at Christmas – especially as I forget so many birthdays throughout the year! Here are some of my top picks for the special people in my life – some purchased and some not and I’m not saying which as they are hopefully reading my posts!

I find it especially difficult to select presents for the men in my life. This year booze is top of the list. As my family are in the UK M&S are always the best bet as I can pay here and designate a UK shipping address, plus they have a great selection of beers and wines.

A case of Anglianico is superb value at less than £39. There’s also 25% off now if you buy 2 cases – one for you and one for a gift!

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Another very special person loves his beer. This gift will go down a treat. A mixed case of IPAs and ales.

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My nephews are still really little but M&S have some great gifts for kids. I love this Gruffalo t-shirt and I know someone who loves the animated movie.

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My sister is going to hate me for this one – but at least it’s not a huge jar of beads like we received last year!

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My niece is only 3 but she loves clothes and princesses – well what girl doesn’t. Here are my choices for her this year.

A beautiful skirt from M&S which is actually very similar to Boden’s applique skirts:

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Or I also love the idea of this craft set to build your own princess!

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For the Mom’s and sister’s in our lives how about some sleepwear. Sometimes it might feel too intimate to buy sleepwear but when it is ‘lounge wear’ I think it is fine – especially when it is cashmere. I have these from last year and wear them all the time in the winter in front of the t.v.!

Rosie pure cashmere trousers:

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If pure cashmere is a bit too much for your budget then these cashmere blend pants are also gorgeous and they have all sizes available – last year I had to trawl daily to grab a pair as they sold out so quickly.

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J.Crew are fabulous for sleepwear and many of their items have 30% off here in the US with code SHOPNOW.

I love their whisper jersey collection like these sleep pants:

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and this nightshirt:

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For some proper Christmas pyjamas that can actually then be worn all year round I just love these buffalo checked shorts.

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Knitwear is always welcome in my house and this colorblock tunic is new in at J.Crew – I especially love the poppy color but I couldn’t manage to grab an image of that so click through here to see it! This is the burgundy and navy – classic for this season.

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I’ve been having conversations with a friend about this side zip cable sweater. It is gorgeous and again is 30% off right now with code SHOPNOW.

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I love this rib stitch turtle neck in electric red – totally festive but not a Christmas jumper!

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This t-shirt is a great gift for a good friend – full of color and really unique. The Donald Robertson Dancing Ladies tee.

 

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Now for some extra goodies that I just love and will make great gifts – I would certainly welcome them!

For the traveler I love this passport cover:

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I know several people close to me who would love to carry their jewelry in this.

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I just love this cup – it is basically all I can manage to say before my morning cup of joe.

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This bowl is so unique and they also do dinner plates. Absolutely striking.

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For jewelry and accessories I adore a great fur scarf.

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Anthropologie always have great jewelry that I know many of my girlfriends would be thrilled to receive.

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With 3 dogs I have recently become somewhat of an expert in scented candles. I have several on my wish list for Santa. I think these from Anthropologie are gorgeous stocking stuffers.

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A long list but by no means exhaustive! What are you shopping for this year?

I’m off to chill out after a brisk walk with the dogs. We have a week off for Thanksgiving and the whole family is excited. It’s our favorite holiday of the year – yup we’re totally American.

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Trousers – J.Crew drapey wool sweatpants // Jumper – Uniqlo mohair blend // Sneakers – Nike from J.Crew (similar here) // Gilet – Zara // Bag – H&M

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Jumper – J.Crew (on sale plus 30% off with SHOPNOW) // Jeans – Diesel Fayza (on sale here!) // Sneakers – Nike from J.Crew (similar here)

 

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Funky boots

We all know I have an unhealthy obsession with boots – particularly ankle boots. This season I am smitten with all boots sparkly and patterned. It all began with these YSL boots in silver

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Or maybe the gold?

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472391_ou_pp Or maybe the knee highs?

YSL knee boot

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Or something totally go go girl:

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Then I discovered these Valentino boots – how beautiful are these and so unique!

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It doesn’t help that I have been following Tiffany Wendel for over a year now and her Giuseppe Zanotti sparkly boots are freakin’ fabulous!

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So the search began for something more budget friendly and I was surprised by the choice available. Firstly these Boden Soho boots are gorgeous – I love the height of the heel!

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A lot of sizes have recently come back in stock – plus there is 25% off with code 7Y2J

Zara also have a version that has a lovely profile.

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If you don’t want to go all over glitter then how about these from Kate Spade? The bow detail is adorable.

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Want something shiny but not glittery – then how about the Boden chic ankle boot in pewter – a fabulous neutral that can be worn all year.

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Moving on to patterned boots – and for me you can’t beat leopard print. It’s a great neutral and I love it paired with all black. These Newbury boots are on my Xmas list – I’ve sent my Husband the link and size :)

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The Sam Edelman Petty is a great boot – so comfortable and classic.

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Ok so not patterned or glitter but I couldn’t help including this version of the Petty in Bone – just lush!

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The Boden Soho boot also comes in leopard – again I love the fact that the heel is covered too. Don’t forget that code 7Y2J.

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Fancy something other than leopard print – then how about the Boden chic ankle boot in zebra? – I love these.

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For a knee high boot Boden have 3 fabulous choices with a heel to suit everyone. The pointed stretch boot is a whopping 30% off with the code 7Y2J.

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The block heel boot is seriously classy and fits nicely with the 70s trend.

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My personal favorite is the wedge boot.

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Just in case you have been astoundingly good this year and have yet to submit your list to Santa, or if not – just drool over them – look at these leopard print Valentino Rockstud boots!

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Here is my take today on the leopard print boots!

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Boots – Sam Edelman Petty // Jeans – Zara coated jeans // Jumper – Uniqlo merino polo neck // Cape – Asos

Bizarrely I had leopard on my feet yesterday too!

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Sneakers – Golden Goose slides (similar here) // Jeans – H&M (old) // Jumper – Boden Off duty // Gilet – JohnnyB (similar here)

What do you think about making your feet the star of the show?

 

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A Wedding Weekend in Charlotte

Just a quick weekend update as I am currently nursing 2 sick children at home! One with a head cold and one with a sore tummy – both glued to Phineas and Ferb. I feel like I am stuck in Groundhog Day. My children seem to be able to watch the same episode over and over and find it equally hilarious each time.

My weekend in Charlotte was fabulous. I left on my own on Friday for the Bachelorette/shower party and then my Husband arrived on Saturday. It was brutally cold but enough alcohol was imbibed and enough laughter had to keep the blood warm and flowing! The party on the Friday evening was held at the Charlotte City Club and it was great fun to catch up with the Bride-to-be and old and new friends.

I wore my Stuart Weitzman Highland boots and my AllSaints Hafbec knitted dress, with the Warehouse Teddy coat for warmth. A comfortable outfit that I felt warm and stylish in. The lipstick is NARS Palais Royale lip pencil.

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Thankfully we had a limo provided – I felt like a true Real Housewife in our stretch Hummer!

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I was super excited on Saturday for the arrival of my Husband. The last time we had a night away together without the kids was for my 40th 3 years ago! This was long overdue! I wore my AllSaints Haff sweater, Theory leather leggings (mine are midnight blue but TheOutnet.com also has them in black now!) and Vince Claire heels in woodsmoke. The lipstick is Mac Snow Orchid. My Husband delivered a new jacket for me too! The Zara fur in charcoal – I adore it – a perfect color! It fits small and I have the Large.

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While I remember – leather pants/leggings – you think you would need to professional dry clean them right? Wrong. I found this article on Pinterest and took a leap of faith with my Theory pants the other night. I doused them under the tap with warm water, inside out, then threw them in the tumble dryer. I swear they came out perfect and I get to save a fortune on dry cleaning bills!

So now it’s back to reality with a thud – we’re now cycling through Johnny Test episodes…

 

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A couple of great buys

Yesterday I talked about Eve and I pointing out great buys to each other – in fact she did it again last night darn her – she was off to bed and I was on my first glass of wine – a dangerous scenario. Eve unfortunately isn’t the only bad influence who leads me astray. Today I’m wearing a sweater that I first saw on gorgeous Hollie on Instagram, and my fabulous coat is one Kat raved about.

The sweater is TopShop, I bought it here through Nordstrom. I absolutely love Nordstrom for their no quibble return policy – I have never once been asked why I am returning an item – they just take the item and refund the money, no questions asked. Great customer service.

The coat is Warehouse who currently offer free shipping and returns to the US. Just be prepared to wait – my coat took almost 2 weeks to arrive. It was undoubtedly worth the wait – I love it. Most sizes are available in low stock so be quick! Fortunately mine arrived at the same time as our mid-30 degree Fahrenheit temperatures!

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Boots – Rag & Bone Newbury Charcoal Suede // Jeans – H&M // Sweater – TopShop or Nordstrom // Coat – Warehouse

I’m off to Charlotte tomorrow for a wonderful friend’s wedding so keep an eye on Instagram for wedding outfits!

 

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On the same wavelength

Eve and I often send each other links and give each other advice on what to buy or not to buy (mainly the former!). We’re true enablers. We have very similar wardrobes – maybe because we have similar body types or just similar tastes. We have joked in the past how much more we could cram in our closets if we were close enough to share clothes. Yesterday we were each wearing our Mango culottes on different sides of the Atlantic.

Mango have another code right now too – purchase one item and get 30% off – purchase 2 or more items and get 40% off! Just use code 6DISCOUNT7 in the US and 6DISCOUNT in the UK. All sizes in the culottes are still available in the US!

You can click here to see Eve’s interpretation and here is mine – I was scared of chilly ankles :)

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Culottes – Mango // Sweater – Everlane v-neck slouchy cashmere // Gilet – JohnnyB (last year but similar here with 25% off till Thursday midnight!) LOVING the jacket version too here! // Boots – Zara

As Eve mentions they are incredibly comfortable and fit on the larger side for Mango – though their sizing is all over the place! These are a UK 12/US 8 and fit great especially on my waist where I sometimes struggle with waistbands being too tight!

I seem to have a thing for grey at the moment and I can’t get my hands on enough grey sweaters! My new love is the Everlane sleeveless chunky knit. Being sleeveless makes it easy to wear under jackets and it’s also dressier to wear with leather pants or skirts for a night out. The knit is so soft – I am obsessed. I dug out my old favorite Diesel Fayzas – the best jeans ever.

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Sneakers – Golden Goose (similar here) // Jeans – Diesel Fayza jogg jeans // Sweater – Everlane sleeveless chunky knit // Jacket – Zara

I’m hoping to go for a cheeky curry for lunch with my Husband today – it better be a hot one as our Polar Plunge arrives tomorrow :) Just in time for my trip to Charlotte for a wedding bbbbrrrrr!

Oh and one last note – if you haven’t already then make sure you invest in the Urban Decay Naked palettes! Mine arrived and I LOVE them! Yes they are $50 – but you can buy 5 single shadows for that price and here you get a highly pigmented, non-dusty, easy to apply, long lasting eyeshadow palette with 12 colors. I am wearing the pinkier hues here from the Naked 3 palette.

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25% off everything at Boden!

Now you all know I don’t buy nearly as much from Boden as I used to – Boden used to dominate my closet! I was the Queen of Boden tunics! These days I like to be a little more daring and eclectic. Having said that there are still items that I always turn to Boden for and now is the ideal time to do it with 25% off till Thursday midnight!

Here are my picks and a few things I’ll be stocking up on. First of all for my Husband – he LOVES their lounge pants and all I can say is, given how fussy he is with clothes, they must be fabulous! They’d make perfect a Xmas present.

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Now for me. I find Boden’s Cashmere to be some of the best on the market. Far superior to J.Crew. It never bobbles and I wash all mine on the wool cycle in the machine with no shrinkage. I have a cashmere hoody from last year but absolutely love this cashmere lounge sweater – I adore the neckline. Again a perfect Xmas present.

14WWIN_BK015_NAV_W01I’m wearing my Westbourne jumper today. It’s one of my all time Boden favorites and I have it in black and grey. I am particularly loving the brighter colors that it is now available in.

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This toasty roll neck is a bit of a curve ball – especially in this colorway. I have ordered it – I LOVE the yellow – it makes it far more wearable for me that the yellow is away from my face.

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I am smitten with the Skye scarf in yellow. I have ordered a couple of yellow scarves this season and returned them as the yellow has been to bleurgh – this looks perfect fingers crossed! I absolutely love the pink in it too!

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Poppy will be glad to hear that I managed to order her red boots. She’s been hounding me for these for weeks!

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To get your 25% off make sure you enter 8A8C (F2J7 in the UK) at checkout. Now is the time to get those Xmas lists in order!

As for what I’ve been wearing well Saturday was definitely a comfy day at home nursing a little hangover after our night out.

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Boots – Uggs // Jeans – J.Crew (25% off with GETWARM) // T-shirt – Mango // Cardigan – AllSaints (old but similar here)

Today I am bracing for the Arctic blast that is due to hit us this week. More layers and coats!

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Jeans – Zara // Boots – AllSaints Bonny Cuban (similar here) // Jumper – Boden Westbourne // Coat – Mango (old) // Bag – Zara

Stay warm!

 

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Date night

My Husband and I cheered with relief once Halloween was done with last week. It’s safe to say neither of us enjoy the trick or treating much – maybe because we never did it as children in England so there is no nostalgia for us. Our children, however, love it and had a fabulous night, but for us it just meant we could now look forward to our night out belatedly celebrating my Husband’s birthday!

Before heading out I was in desperate need of a haircut – short hair always feels like it grows 20x faster! I headed to the salon on Thursday wearing this outfit designed for comfort and warmth. We have an Arctic chill arriving this week – I cannot wait…not.

IMG_9902Jacket – Mango // Jeans – Zara // Cashmere tunic – Everlane // Boots – H&M Isabel Marant (old)

I’m thrilled with my hair – a super short undercut and I have gone black for the winter – you know how I like to make a statement. I’m continuing to experiment with my makeup to keep the look feminine and I’m having fun with it! The best thing is my Husband loves it – it really is great to have his support when I try new looks! Last night we headed to our regular joint to finally celebrate his birthday and we had an amazing night as always. Great food, great service and amazing company – I am sometimes surprised that after 23 years we can still laugh at each other’s jokes (and our own for that matter) and scintillate with our conversation ;)

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Dress – Agi dress AllSaints // Boots – Stuart Weitzman Highland

A little worse for wear today so I spent it holding the sofa down watching football and movies – a perfect Fall Saturday!

 

 

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My picks from Sephora’s VIB 20% sale!

I love cosmetics – maybe not as much as clothes – but I’ve always had a thing for lipsticks, and more recently eye makeup. Having super short hair I always feel far more feminine with some good makeup on for the day.

Sephora have started their VIB 20% off sale today – their website crashed it is so popular. It’s back up at last and I manage to order 3 items I have been lusting after for a few months – Urban Decay’s classic Naked palettes. With a full 20% off it was a no brainer – Sephora have discounts so rarely.

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The other day I bought Nars Audacious lipstick in Michiyo – I could have waited and saved but I wanted to see it in person. If you love pink buy it – the pigment is incredible.

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Another lipstick that I adore is Urban Decay’s Anarchy – a fab bright pink with great pigmentation and packed with moisture.

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I’m wearing it today to brighten a gloomy day!

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The code for the VIB sale I used is GIFTROUGE – if this doesn’t work check out retailmenot.com for other shared codes!

Let me know what you buy!

 

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Pink and gray/grey!

Grey is a word I have terrible trouble with these days – American spelling or British spelling? It seems everyone in my family struggles with American English at times. My son demonstrated his Southern accent yesterday. He is pupil of the week in class and had to write a sentence beginning with “I feel…” to articulate his emotions on being selected. I checked his work afterwards and he had written “I feel people’s buckets with water”. Yes that’s right – he read it as ‘fill’ because as a true Southerner he ‘fee-yils’ things up. Just like Poppy brushes her ‘hay-yer’.

It’s election day here in the US today and I’m ready to vote. It’s also bloody freezing so I have the big guns out for the first time this year – my new Mango coat. I took inspiration from Pinterest for my outfit. Nothing more relaxing on a Monday evening than surfing Pinterest and catching up on Homeland while the Husband watches Monday Night Football!

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Here’s my winter version of how to wear pink trousers. These are the J.Crew wool joggers and they are fabulous – I can’t wait to wear them with my Vince Claires in the evening. They fit big and these are a US 6.

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Trousers – J.Crew // T-shirt – J.Crew // Sweatshirt – Everlane // Sneakers – Nike from J.Crew // Coat – Mango

The t-shirt can’t be seen but it’s so fun with Ostriches from a new selection at J.Crew:

ostrich tee

 

Yesterday I was in culottes – I just flipping love these from Marks and Spencers! Less than £30 too! I am in a UK 12 medium length and they fit beautifully.

IMG_9782 IMG_9798Boots – Zara // Culottes – Marks and Spencer // Sweatshirt – Mango // Jacket – Mango (similar here)

Remember to get and vote if you are in the US!

 

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Happy Birthday!

I love my friends but they sure can be a bad influence. Sue has introduced me to Everlane. Ironic as they don’t ship to the UK yet (except via me for Sue!). They are online only, with plans to ship internationally next year, and because they have no bricks and mortar their focus is on cutting costs for the consumer while providing incredible quality – which they do. I am a huge fan of their sweatshirts and cashmere.

Their short sleeve sweatshirt in particular is fabulous – a great boxy cut – and I think quite generous in size. They claim a medium is a US 4-6 but mediums fit me great I am definitely a US 8 on top. It comes in grey, black, navy and vanilla.

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Their cashmere is divine and a great price. I love their slouchy v-neck and now have 2 of them – the black will be on it’s way to me soon I hope! It’s beautifully cut with a longer back and plenty of drape. Again I am in a medium.

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IMG_9764Sweater – Everlane // Jeans – Zara // Boots – Newbury by Rag & Bone // Bag – Coach (old)

Today is my brilliant Husband’s birthday and we have just been for an indulgent lunch. Dinner has been postponed till all the Halloween celebrations this weekend are done with.

IMG_9781 IMG_9778 IMG_9776 IMG_9775Boots – Zara // Skirt – Mango // Jumper – AllSaints Haff 

Happy Birthday gorgeous!

 

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