How early is too early to start the birthday celebrations!?

It’s been an odd week readjusting to life back in Atlanta. I can’t lie, I am totally jealous of all you Europeans just starting your vacations, while we prepare for back to school on Wednesday! My Instagram feed is full of blue skies and oceans and I have to keep reminding myself that was me just a week ago!

To ease the pain I am focusing on my upcoming birthday! I’m 45 on the 10th and like to celebrate for as long as possible! Hence, Friday night, my Husband and I went out for tapas and cocktails. Maybe my Leo instincts are aroused, but I decided to go full on leopard print for the evening. This dress is just £19.99 from New Look and is available in the US here on ASOS (keep checking back for your size – they update regularly). I felt fantastic in it! The dress is pleated so not tight at all and it is the perfect midi length. I’m now on the look out for dresses in a similar style as it felt so great on. The shoes are Vince and an incredible eBay bargain -new they were $425 and I got them NWT for $65!

New look leopard print dress, Vince Aden shoes, Gucci purseDress – New Look // Shoes – Vince Aden off eBay // Bag – Gucci (similar here)

I made a couple of other purchases this week including the red Adidas Gazelles – I just love the Gazelles and they take me back to the 90s when I wore a green pair to death! They do fit big and I sized down to a US 8 instead of my usual 8.5.

Adidas Gazelles

I also just wore my new running tights from the H&M For Every Victory collection. They are amazingly comfortable – 2miles on the treadmill with no adjusting. I’m in a medium and they fit great.

H&M For Every Victory

As for the rest of last week here’s what I’ve been wearing. It’s lovely to have all my closet back!

Mango shoes, Mango top and FalabellaShoes – Mango // Jeans – Zara (old) // Top – Mango (sale reduced from &79.99 to $24.99!) // Bag – Stella McCartney

& Other Stories dress, Mulberry Bayswater, Castañer espadrillesDress – & Other Stories sale // Shoes – Castañer // Bag – Mulberry Bayswater

H&M dress, Golden Goose sneakers, FalabellaDress – H&M // Shoes – Golden Goose // Bag – Stella McCartney

Spring Break 2016 – Fort Morgan

I’m afraid the blogging isn’t going to be very prolific this week. I am currently sitting on a deck with a coffee looking out to the Gulf of Mexico. Once again we are spending Spring Break in Fort Morgan – a beautiful, quiet strip of beach just to the west of Gulf Shores. This year we have a frat house next door to us – Poppy is fascinated and has suddenly expressed a real desire to go to college!

Before I left I decided to get my hair chopped again. The reaction has been mainly ‘at last!’, ‘thank goodness for that’, ‘it’s taken years off you’, ‘Joanna is BACK!’…why on earth don’t people want to tell you these things while you struggle to grow your hair long!? The Husband is thrilled it is short again!

hair Collage

I must admit I think it’s a state of mind too. When I had my septum pierced I really thought I needed to soften my look as the piercing is quite aggressive looking to some. However, now I am so used to it myself I feel more confident about the short hair paired with it. Plus I am running a lot again and that does wonders for my outlook, and don’t give a f*ck attitude 🙂

Before I had my hair cut I spent a few days debating – going backwards and forwards – but I am thrilled with it now and looking at my photos before and after I love it. If I ever say I’m growing it again – shoot me!

gap top CollageTop – The Gap (adore these and have all 3 colors – get 40% off in the US with code SPRINGFUN) // Trousers – Mango (old) // Bag – Givenchy Pandora // Shoes – Vince

Zara topTop – Zara // Trousers – The Gap (again adore these and have all 3 colors! 40% off with code SPRINGFUN in the US) // Shoes – Soludos (most comfortable espadrilles ever – UK here, US here) // Bag – Givenchy Pandora

Otway boots collageBoots – Isabel Marant Otway (found them on eBay at the right price and right size at last!! All the way from Romania!) // Jeans – Zara (old) // Top – Mango // Jacket – J.Crew // Bag – Givenchy Pandora

For now it’s farewell from the sun and surf…

Screen Shot 2016-04-04 at 8.25.48 AMRunning top – Lululemon // Shorts – Lululemon // Sneakers – New Balance (I will never run in another brand again these are so perfect)

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It’s transitioning to spring

I’ve already taken some of my large knits downstairs into my ‘storage closest’, and sadly my cashmere onesies will be heading there tonight not to be seen again till November 🙁 I’m still keeping a few sweaters around as the weather here is completely unreliable right into May – only then can you guarantee heat daily. My daffodils know spring is blooming, we have deer roaming the neighborhood with their babies, and the blossom is beginning to appear. Spring makes me smile.

To acknowledge the warmer temperatures I’ve worn tees and jackets, and had my ankles on show for the past two days.

IMG_0612Shoes – Gucci // Jeans – J.Crew // Tee – AllSaints // Jacket – Mango (currently reduced by 60% in sale) // Bag – H&M

IMG_0627 IMG_0618Shoes – Vince Claire in ink // Trousers – J.Crew // Tee – AllSaints // Jacket – Helmut Lang TheOutnet.com (reduced by 60%)

I hope you are all able to stash your sweaters away soon!

Christmas outfits

I am currently reclining in my M&S cashmere onesie after stuffing myself silly at a Boxing Day lunch. We went to a local restaurant and had the best lunch ever – lobster bisque followed by steak. All I can say is thank goodness for M&S onesies – and today they are on sale!! I may have just ordered the leopard print version that Nicole Scherzinger is wearing here…yup I’m a sucker for cashmere even when it is in the 60s here! The one I bought last year is amazing and washes great – I pretty much live in it in the winter when I am home and have been known to walk down to the bus stop in it 🙂

Nicole in her onesie with Helena Bonham-Carter, backstage after her performance in Cats:

scherzyAvailable from M&S reduced from a whopping £225 to £157:

M&S onesieOr if leopard print isn’t your style there are plenty of the plain versions available that are reduced from £199 to £99, available in pewter, camel and cerise:

hooded onesie

As for other sale purchases I am particularly pleased with my Splendid haul from Net-a-porter.com. Thinking ahead for the summer of course, I have ordered a couple of t-shirt dresses, tanks and jumpsuits that are super comfortable. I even wore one of the jumpsuits on Christmas day but neglected to get a photo as I imbibed too much prosecco too soon 🙂 This is the jumpsuit worn on Christmas day – so soft and comfortable, I have a medium and it is reduced from $225 to $90.

splendid jumpsuitAlso available in green – great with a tan in the summer!

jumpsuit greenThe tanks are a great bargain in the sale. I’ve been wanting these all year but just couldn’t stomach $65 full price for a tee!

tank tank marlThe maxi dresses are beautiful and are a really fabulous fabric that will be cool and yet drapes wonderfully. I love both styles.

maxi dressThis strapless version is reduced from $115 to $46!

maxi dress straplessI can’t wait to wear this on the beach in Cyprus – such a fun color! Even better when it is reduced from $130 to $52!

tee-dressFinally my favorites from the AllSaints sale. These boots are to die for – so unique and dramatic. reduced from $415 to $290:

AlbaIn my eyes you can’t beat a great AllSaints dress. Today for Boxing Day I wore this – a lovely loose knit with gold thread throughout. Perfect for the expanding waistline. I have a medium and it is reduced to $129 from $215.

agnesAnd here it is on me today – thank goodness I opted for a loose dress! I was in a real rush too after spending 40 odd minutes setting up a new sewing machine for Poppy – talk about flashbacks to Home Economics classes! They are certainly paying dividends now for sure!

agnes dressBoots – Rag and Bone Newbury boots (some in the sale here!) // Dress – AllSaints

On Christmas Eve for our annual visit to Church I again opted for warmth and comfort with my Zara knitted suit.

zara knits

Sweater – Zara (now on sale) // Trousers – Zara (now on sale) // Shoes – Vince Claire oxblood

Before the Christmas festivities began my Husband took me out for cocktails on Tuesday so I opted for some sparkles – who knows when I will wear them again!

sequins

Shoes – Vince Claire // Leggings – H&M // Sweater – Everlane cashmere tunic // Jacket – Zara velvet blazer

As for presents, I must have been exceptionally good in 2014, – look what Santa bought me!

leopard newburyI hope you all got what you wished for and had an amazing Christmas! Now to plan those New Year’s outfits!

 

The essential transitional piece

I know you have all been dealing with an Indian Summer in the UK and here in Atlanta we are unseasonably cool – but it won’t last. The challenge is when do we pack the Summer closet away and commit to Fall? Well one piece that I find saves my umming and ahhing over what to wear at this time of year is a sleeveless jacket. It provides the added weight and warmth that you may crave early morning, along with some stylish tailoring, without fully committing to a full on coat.

sleeveless jacket 1 sleeveless jacket 2 OP sleeveless jacket 3 VB Sleeveless jacket 4 sleeveless jacket 5 sleeveless jacket 6 sleeveless jacket 7 VB

Images : Pinterest.com

The high street has several great options right now, starting with these from Zara:

I particularly love this first one that is also worn by Brooklyn Blonde here and above.

zara sleevelss coat Zara 3 Zara 2

 

Mango are also a great reliable source of on trend jackets:

I adore this military inspired jacket:

Mango1

However, for a true timeless classic this one cannot be beaten:

Mango 2

And here is my interpretation. My sleeveless jacket is last year’s from Marks & Spencer who currently have this one available at just £13.99 reduced from £45!

M&S

PS 3 v1 PS 5 v1

Jacket – M&S (old) // Trousers – Zara coated chinos (old) // Top – Zara cross over top (old) // Shoes – Vince Claire // Bag – Zara

Will you be wearing the sleeveless trend this Fall?

 

New earrings.

I’ve never been one to wear huge earrings. I am always envious of my friends who can carry off great chandelier earrings or statement necklaces. I always feel it’s just too much on me – I feel ‘over the top’ with large jewelry – except that is when it comes to rings and bracelets! Since having all my piercings done I’ve been wearing studs all the time. I’ve got so much going on in my ears it seems crazy to add more! However, I have grown tired of my studs and I was looking for something delicate and different – fine jewelry as opposed to costume jewelry – without the fine jewelry price.

I have been buying my nose rings from an Etsy store – they are fabulous low gauge and gold filled so no tarnishing. Karyn is based in BC, Canada and makes the jewelry herself. Recently I discovered that she also makes beautiful earrings that appeared to be exactly what I was looking for – and they were. They arrived quickly and are so delicate and light – I love wearing them. I got mine in rose gold filled to match other jewelry I have, but she will also make them in silver and yellow gold filled.

Marquis earrings – 

Marquis

Diamond shape earrings –

diamond

Teardrop earrings –

Arc earringsShe has lots of other great designs so I encourage you to take a look. I received 10% off my purchase as a repeat buyer, and she is giving you all 10% off if you use code Featured10 at checkout!

Today I am wearing the teardrop hoops and they look great with all my other piercings!

Earrings

It’s back off to work now for me and then cheerleading practice with Poppy tonight, that’s after 3 hours of practice yesterday! It’s a good job she loves it!

Image 1

Vince Claires

Shoes – Vince Claire // Jeans – Zara (old) // T-shirt – Asos

 

The birthday celebrations are finally over…

After continuing all week I am well and truly closing down the party.  I’ve had a brilliant week in the company of family and friends and I’m now ready to get on with this damn health kick I keep talking about – all talk and no action for sure.

On Tuesday evening I headed out with some great girls from work – another Leo and a new girl so it was a combination of birthday and welcome drinks.  I’ve always loved off the shoulder tops – for someone like me with a weak jawline and one too many chins I think they are really flattering and draw the eye to the clavicle.

Black

Shoes – Vince Claire // Jeans – H&M // Top – Zara (new season but not online)

Heading off to work the following day I felt the need for comfy clothes and what better shoes to wear than Golden Goose – cool and comfy to add a bit of oomph to an otherwise relatively boring outfit.

casual Friday

Sneakers – Golden Goose // Jeans – H&M // Top – AllSaints Tiko tee (old – similar here)

Thursday night I was out with Cali who I went to NYC with at the beginning of summer.  I always have so much fun with her – friends really have made this year’s birthday perfect.  I swear the photo shows up every darn crease on this top – it really wasn’t quite as bad in real life and was perfect after 5 minutes in the Atlanta humidity!

GNO

Shoes – Sam Edelman Yazmine (on sale) // Shorts – Zara (old – similar culottes here) // Top – Mango (old) // Necklace – Marks and Spencer (bought here)

Finally the best birthday card ever arrived from my very witty brother.  I thought you might appreciate it 🙂

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Okay off to put the running gear on – have a great weekend!!  We’ve got some very exciting visitors coming on Sunday – I’ll keep you posted!

Kool and the Gang

It’s 1.47am here and I am listening to BBC Radio 2 online.  Can you believe they just played Kool and the Gang “Joanna” – oh yes it is a sign…I’m tired, a little tipsy and a lot happy.  After an amazing dinner I am off to bed ready to begin my 44th year on Sunday!

Today started with a great hot yoga session, followed by an indulgent lunch out on my own, a scary storm, and then dinner at our favorite special restaurant.

IMG_8796Shoes – Nine West Oslo // Dress – ASOS (here and similar here)

IMG_8831

 Dress – AllSaints (old) // Shoes – Vince Claire // Bag – YSL

The shoes were the star of the show – I LOVE my new VInce Claire pumps!!  These are in woodsmoke which is a lovely neutral grey.

photo

 

We met some lovely people sitting next to us who were also celebrating a birthday!

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