20 September, 2016

Autumn/Winter is all about Fancy Footwear!

When it comes to heels I don't like to think about practicality, that's what flats are for; it should be all about the aesthetics of the shoe. Heels are something that I'm extremely passionate about and which I consider as the centre piece or the coming together of any look so of course it's really  important to get it right. With so many different designers and styles out there it can be over whelming to even know what you want or what to wear your favourite heels are, whether it's a vintage inspired peep toe, classic stiletto or sandals, the wrong heel can ruin the prettiest of outfits so when choosing the perfect heels make sure you've taken the time to select the perfect shoe.

The stiletto heel is of course a timeless classic shoe; it's iconic and screams sex appeal. There is only designer encapsulates the essence and allure of the a stunning heel, of it's got to be a Christian Louboutin. While most couldn't afford either of these ladies extensive Louboutin collections or maybe would not consider spending that much on shoes but it is worth noting, these heels are not simply a shoe, but an investment piece, well a fashion investment nonetheless. A pair of classic black heels (as pictured above) will set you back a hefty £550 but with care and attention these heels could last years... Don't worry however if Louboutins are either not within your budget or is simply just not your favourite shoe designer (which you should reconsider!!) there are many other equally chic designers and high street brands that have excellent collections, check out Shoes of Prey where you can design your own shoes! Check out high street brands and online stores such as Pinup Girl Clothing, ASOS,  Dune, Office, Schuh, New Look, Zara, River Island, Mango, Hobbs, and Topshop which all have wonderful collections. Paired with retro or pencil dressor skirt ankle length vintage inspired high waist trousers. 

Moving on to sandals, while not the most practical for the coming chiller months, they couldn't leave them out of our fancy footwear favourites! Sandals work wonderfully with flowing fabrics rather than more structured dresses. Try pairing with a swing style skirt or dress, to create a more flirty feminine look which is ideal for a more romantic inspired look, perfect for St. Valentines Night. When it comes to sandals, my instant designer of choice has to be Jimmy Choo or Manolo Blahnik. These designers sandals are some of the most sought after designs in the world and with such an outstanding collections year after year is not hard to see the attraction! Again of course these sandals do come with a hefty price tag but like Louboutins, there an investment shoe. Remember that as long as you choose wisely of course these shoes will stay fashionable for years or  if you get tired of them with designer sandals it is easy to resale on eBay even after they have been worn as long as they are in good condition. Jimmy Choo or Manolo Blahnik style have been replicated sandals and equally matched with elegant high street designs. Some of the cream of the crop can be found at LK Bennett, Karen Millen, Nine West, Outnet.com, Alternative Footwear, Very.co.uk, Kurt GeigerShopbop, ASOS, Chockers Shoes, Barretts, Selfridges,  My Wardrobe, Forever 21, Net-a-porter

For a more authentic or unique vintage/ pin-up/burlesque inspired heels there are so many excellent stores available online opened in recent years which stock some of the most beautiful shoe designs available. Some of The Chic Guide's favourites can be found at Remix Vintage Shoes, ModCloth,  Revival Retro, Miss L Fire, Pinup Girl Clothing,  Ruche,  20th Century Foxy, I love Vintage,  Unique VintageLove Burlesque, Sweet On Your Feet. Pair with a vintage or vintage inspired or reproduction suit, pencil dress or any vintage inspired look to create a stunning look for your special date or simply just a glam night out with girlfriends. Remember with any shoe don't be afraid to experiment with different styles and design of shoe to create different looks; a sexy ultra high stiletto helps elongate the leg and crates allure, while quirky design or bold print can add to more fun relax element but most importantly wear what you feel comfortable in and what suits your outfit but your personal style and your sure to look your upmost best. 

Do you know of any shoe store gems that we haven't mentioned if so we'd love to hear from you or reviews on your favourite places to shoe shop, it's always great to hear what your loving....

12 August, 2016

☆ Stealing the last of summer ☆

Welcome to my new photo series taken by Michael O'Brien ( @michaelobrien22 Twitter ). We shot these photographs just before our trip to Helsinki.  It was the perfect backdrop for a summer shoot inspired by the colours I wore my favourite tomato red vintage linen skirt that I bought from Glorious Clothing in Glasgow a couple of years ago and style it simply with a red scarf in my hair, my staple hoop earrings, an off the shoulder retro style top and lipstick brooch from Primark. This was a very understated retro casual look inspired by my love 50's mix with a Spanish gypsy twist against the beautiful backdrop. Styling, hair and make-up by me. Hope you enjoy!

Much love,

30 July, 2016

♡♡ Make Fashion Fun Again! ♡♡

In the adult world of work, stress and all the trappings that go with it can sometime become shall we say, be a bit mundane....! Getting on the train in the morning to a sea of gray and black clothing, with majority of people looking tired, depressed or a longing for next weekend to come as rapidly as possible; surely I think to myself  "it can't be that bad"? How you dress can enhance or hinder your mood too, I definetly find on the days when I'm wearing something more fun, I feel more fun; wearing something with a novelty print genuinely makes my mood lighter and people respond that way towards me too! This got me thinking...fashion should be fun again! It sounds pretty obvious right? The more fun you add to your wardrobe, the more the world will see you in a positive and happy way thus making you feel happy and others around you happy which is always a good thing, right?

Thankfully novelty prints as no longer assigned to children’s dresses and if you have noticed before there is a world of wonderful prints out there to explore and have fun with. Adding a fun blouse or skirt if you're not ready to go really bold is a great way to incorporate a fun print into your everyday look. I've collected some lovely prints to inspire you to venture forth and have fun with fashion. Life to much to short to be too serious, clothes are a great way of expressing yourself and how the world interacts with you.

Of course there are times and places you need to dress in a more formal and sophisticated way but a lot of time we don't, so make it fun! You'll find lots of wonderful prints available in everything from blouses, dresses, jackets... the list is endless even socks! Kath Kidston, Book of Deer, Kling, Banned Apparel, Lalaland, Zara, Dangerfield, Bernie Dexter, Modcloth, Ness, Love Ur Look, ASOS, Lindy Bop, and many more so go explore...! So here's some of my current favourites which you can dress up or down depending on the occassion. 


Book of Deer Blouse
Zara Blouse and Midi Skirt
Lalaland Pineapple Jacket
Loveurlook Holiday Scene Dress
Banned Apparel Cosmetics Print Capri's
Bernie Dexter Dress
Monki Graphic Print Blouse
Kath Kidson London Buses Dress

05 July, 2016

Thrifting Thrills!

I love to wear some something different everyday, no literally I can't wear the same outfit two days in a row. I've always been like that, sometimes changing two or three times a day when I was younger. It's not normal, certainly not cheap and my wardrobe is stuffed to the giles! I love to dress up, always have, always will but I have to be realistic about my budget and I hate spending ridiculous amounts on clothes which to a lot people probably appears contradictory. 'She loves to shop but doesn't like spending money...' it's true though, I only spend within my budget and get the occasional expensive item but mainly I'm a serial bargain and thrift hunter. I think it's this love of thrifty style that originally sparked my love of vintage fashion and the two go hand-in-hand! I'd always stumble upon unique and pretty vintage pieces compared with high street fashion that everyone else had.

Don't get me wrong, I do shop in the high street but I like to try and wear things less on trend and more timeless, as frankly, I couldn't care less what's 'in fashion'...it's boring!! The older I get the less I care, I don't try to avoid wearing 'on trend' looks, if I see something I like I'll wear it but certainly don't go buy by trends. I wear what I like and what I think looks good regardless, be it good or bad or downright awful!! It's much more freeing thinking and shopping this way. On trend usually equals high cost, so it's just not sustainable to keep spending, if you're like me and love dressing up differently everyday then thrift is the way to go!

There are tips and tricks I've found helpful when shopping second-hand. Visit regularly, it's not like shopping at a regular store the stock is ever changing so if you get to know some good local stores then pop in and go early in the morning so you'll get a better choice before the best is snapped up! Lots of people are realising the benefits of thrift shopping so prices have gone up in recent years so be sure that what your buying is actually a bargain and in great/good condition otherwise shop somewhere else, it's not worth it! Examine the item, the same as you would in any shop, think what it will work with in your wardrobe. Rummage round, spend a while looking around, gems are sometimes hidden, I often find cute vintage scarf’s or bag in bargain bins. People think it's junk but to me, it's a treasure! 

Do your research of brands, vintage styles or eras so that you don't pass up or miss out on a great find. I look up stuff online and think of how I can replicate the essence of that era, what pieces I need to recreate a certain look so I search for a specific piece then when I go shopping and it makes it really fun when you find it! It takes longer to hunt down the perfect piece but you always find them in the end...I had been searching for a black pillbox hat for ages and then randomly came across the perfect hat a year later for only £2.00! I love that about thrift shopping you never know what you'll find! 

My look is mostly thrifted, dress I got for €4 in Ireland which I guess is about maybe £3.25, shoes are also thrifted and were only 75p which I found a couple of weeks ago unworn in mint condition, tights and cardigan are from Primark totalling £5 and for accessories to finish I'm wearing this adorable strawberry which I picked up for £1. So my whole look comes to £9 and it's one of my favourites, anything with gingham I'm all over it! Hope this may inspire you to thrift more or realise that whatever your budget you can look ultra chic! I'll be sharing more looks on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter so visit and follow for more thrifty treats!

All hair, make-up and styling me. All photos taken by Michael O'Brien (@michaelobrien22) 

23 June, 2016

Tiki Dreams...

The weather in has been amazing recently so I've been taking every opportunity to get and enjoy the sunshine and play about with my new camera! A couple of weekend ago me and my other half went for a walk and picnic to a beautiful local park to see the rhododendrons in full bloom and soak up the glorious sunshine. They are the most wondrous flowers to look at, each as something unique and enchanting to look at, no one plant or flower is the same. That day the sun was absolutely glorious with the rhodoendrons lining the drive with the most beauiful display of colours, those kind of days don't come around very often so we made the most of it, had a lovely picnic and even managed to take some pretty photo's too!

My look was inspired by vintage tiki style, which comes American genre of style and popculture kitsch of Polynesian origin...think Mai Tai cocktails, palm prints and tropical prints! I'm wore a vintage cotton H&M tiki print dress and hair-flowers. I've had this dress for over a decade and I still wear it and love, the print is so vivid and bright and it's really comfortable and cool on hot days. I don't often get much opportunity to sport such a tropical look living in Scotland but the weather has been amazing so I had to pull it back out of wardrobe for such unusually sunny weather! Here are some photo's from our walk, hope you'll enjoy! All photography is taken by +Michael O'Brien . Hair, make-up and styling by me. Thanks for stopping by and have a fantastic weekend lovelies ♡

13 June, 2016

Woodland Wonder

Recently did a shot with my multi talented friend, photograher and blogger of Stephosnacks. It was an absolutely glorious morning so we went to the local wood to shoot. I wore a vintage dress gifted to me, one of my favourite vintage dresses in my wardrobe, there's no label so I can't tell you the brand. The fabric of the dress is so light and soft, flows beautifully and twirls like a dream...the ideal dress to shot in! I paired it with a vintage hat, gloves and peep toe heels which are modern from New Look. It was such a fun experience to shot with a close friend, enjoy the beautiful woodlands and then we had a little picnic after! All photos are taken by Stephosnacks, hair, make-up and styling by me. Visit her blog for lots of gorgeous food, recipes, reviews and much more...! For more from the shot visit me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Google +. Next week, Tropical Paradise ♡

05 June, 2016

♡ Postcards from the garden ♡

All photo's were taken by Michael O'Brien (@michaelobrien22). Hair, styling and post shoot edit by me. Clothing featured: Dress by Ness Clothing, Belero and hair flowers by H&M, ballet pumps by New Look, Bumble Bee brooch by Primark. For more from The Chic Guide visit Google+, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and Instagram. Don't forget to like, share and subscribe! Thanks for stopping by...

30 May, 2016

Freddies Of Pinewood

Freddies of Pinewood is an English based company specialising in 1940's - 1950's style denim but they now design have a wide selection of other retro inspired items including vintage mens and women's inspired tops, dresses, accessories, menswear, jackets and more. The Freddies of Pinewood designs stay very true to the original style of the denim worn in the 1940's and 50's which means they are all high waisted with a comfortable looser fit unlike the modern designs most of us are used to! 

The brand is extremely popular with retro enthusiasts, vintage lovers and women that like classic style but their not exclusive to a certain style design is can still be worn the fit and designs of Freddies denim jeans are far more flattering to any size when compared with the modern standard denim wear as they sit just above the waist rather than hanging on your hips so the jeans give you an instant curves and really do look very flattering as they fall on the narrow part of your waist. Instead the fit of the Freddies denim takes the focus away from your hips and accentuates your waist which will also instantly give you more of an hourglass shape and looks sexier which is always a plus! They're definitely worth checking out if you want something a little different than what's available from your average high street store or even if you're looking for casual wear with a more flattering vintage style fit. 

When I bought my first pair I instantly fell in love with the cut and the quality of the denim it's practically indestructible. It's so heavy which is fantastic as you're guaranteed to have them for years, so for me it's worth the investment! I want to get another pair; I love these the new fifties button up jeans that are new to their denim collection. Their clothes are ideal for the creating the perfect retro casual look without being too dramatic or dressy. Below are some of favourites you'll find online now!

You can check out there full range on-line at: http://www.freddiesofpinewood.co.uk/ . Thanks for reading and stopping by and have a great week! x

Midnight Blue Diamond Dress 

Hooded Shirt-jacket

'La Belle' Shirt Striped Shirt

Jeanies Denim Jeans

Grease Monkey Boiler Suit

21 May, 2016

Botanical Brillance

One of the things I really love to do on sunny weekends it get outdoors, visit pretty garden and walk. Being stuck indoors at work all week sometimes leaves to feeling drained and creatively uninspired so to recharge I love exploring nature, it really helps gather me thoughts and provides so much fashion and creative inspiration. From the beautiful colours, smells of all the plants and flowers, birds, wind in the trees, in bloom it come alive again. Nature, to me, is absolutely wondrous and I love that I live near so many beautiful parks, walled gardens and Victorian gardens. 

I went on a beautiful walk last weekend, what a glorious day weather wise . We visited a really pretty and picturesque Victorian walled garden. The sunshine brought the whole garden to life. All the colour, smells and sounds were bigger, brighter and bolder than before. Walking around this beautiful space and admiring all the beauty provided me with so many ideas; it's really wonderful to feel so inspired creatively and get to experience such beauty on my doorstep! The colours of all the flowers and trees, the beautiful imagery got thinking about floral accessories, prints and patterns. The perfect to reflection and homage to this wonderful season, why not wear pieces that showcase the majestic beauty of the garden?

It appears I'm not the only one looking upon the beauty around from the garden and reflecting this within fashion. I was extemely excited to see that Erstwilder have teamed up with the beautiful and super talented vintage blogger and Miss Viva Las Vegas 2015, Miss Victory Violet. Together they've created a beautiful floral collection of beautiful botanical collection of jewelry simply perfect for this season. From Fuchsia, Pansies, Forget me Not, Wisteria and Cherry Blossoms to name a few, it's got all my favourite flowers beautifully designed, I think it's one of their best collaborations and collections to date. I can't wait to get my hands on a piece from the collection. 

It's wonderful to see fashion reflecting the beauty of nature and the seasons. It's so important to be in touch with your environment, plant life and nature all around you. Pretty Lanes Original Swiss Vintage reproduction company creates beautiful vintage inspired pieces with strong floral influences in their designs which I absolutely adore of late. Their 3D Daisy pin tuck blouse is a favourite of mine, along with many other pieces from their collection modeled by the stunning, Idda Van Munster.  Both of these pieces are the perfect ode to Spring...nothing reflects the season more than pretty little daisies, perfect print or accessory to showcase spring!

Visit your local botanical gardens, parks or take a walk around your local area if you haven't already and you'll be so pleasantly surprised by all the beauty that surrounds you. From sweet windows boxes to large scale gardens we can all create and appreciate nature however big or small the space or budget you have. It's the same with fashion you don't need to spend a lot or anything to enjoy...it's free to go to most gardens, park and enjoy the outdoors. To be more eco and budget friendly visit your local thrift stores and charity shops, I always find hidden gems. For more nature and fashion inspiration visit me and follow on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Twitter where I post my daily looks and adventures. Thanks for stopping by and have a great weekend. 

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