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Ciao, bella!

So here’s a little story…

When I was 2 I used to live in Italy. It always comes up as my ‘fun fact’ when I have to introduce myself to a big group of people that I don’t know.

At the time I was completely fluent in Italian, I used to pop down to Mario’s at the end of the road and pick up a loaf of schiacciata (salty bread) to devour back at our villa.

Now, however, despite studying GCSE italian as part of my degree, I am useless.

My boyfriend always laughs at me as I tried to impress him when we first met by telling him I could speak Italian. I got myself in a v sticky situation though when we ended up on holiday in the Cinque Terre two months later and he said ‘go on then, you order the food’.

All I could say was ‘ciao’. LOL

So when I saw this BEAUT top on Anthropologie‘s website, it felt only right to pair it with a pair of vintage tartan trousers and pose outside of a pizza shop. Unfortunately no pizza was ordered (this wasn’t cause I’m in Italy lol, I just don’t think I’ve quite got to that stage in my blogging career where I can pull off posing with a pizza slice like Isabella Thorsden).

Anthropologie are absolutely bossing it at the moment. Look at those beautiful Tretorn platform trainers too (anything to give me a bit more height)!

I hope you like the photos below, ciao bella!

 

Outfit details

Anthropologie Sol Angeles t-shirt £58*

Anthropologie Tretorn trainers £88*

Urban Outfitters urban renewal trousers £46

*features press samples, see disclaimer

 

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A Parisienne Tights Subscription: Gambettes Box

 

 

So here’s a little story about why I love Twitter. My sister asked for some patterned tights for Christmas, but not being quite up on the hosiery market, I had no idea where to look. When I tweeted asking for advice, the absolute babe that is Georgia replied and said I should check out Gambettes Box*, a subscription service that delivers 2 pairs of tights through your letterbox every month. So I signed up, ordered a box, and the minute the tights came to my flat, I fell in love.

 

What is a Gambettes Box? 

 

Designed in Paris, Gambettes Box delivers two pairs of beautiful tights every month. And I’m not talking cheap, snag-on-the-first-day tights.  These are beautifully made with a unique design, and the most Parisienne packaging you’ve ever seen. When I received my first box, I wanted to pull my new tights on, grab a café au lait and skip gaily down the Champs Elysées (instead I pulled them over my sausage legs and took photos round the corner from my flat, making sure the local Greggs was not in shot).

 

What do you get in a Gambettes Box?

 

The joy of a Gambettes Box is that you don’t quite know what you’re going to get every month! The tights are a complete surprise, but from the two boxes I’ve received so far, they’re always elegant and stylish. The packaging is absolutely beautiful too, complete with French quotes, and postcards of models styling the tights. They make great presents for your gal pals’ birthdays and they’re an absolute bargain at only £13.90 per box (I even have a cheeky discount code below too!).

 

Where can I buy a Gambettes Box? 

 

Gambettes Box is a subscription service, so you get a box monthly but if you just want to buy 1 box, you can! You sign up to the subscription and then cancel the service when you’ve collected enough beautiful tights to last you a lifetime! If you don’t cancel the subscription you’ll still be delivered a box a month, but it’s pretty much a rolling contract. And the brilliant thing is guys, that because I’ve teamed up with Gambettes Box, you can get £2 off your first order! All you have to do is use the code:

GAMBETTESEMMA

Click here to order your first box: https://www.gambettesbox.com/#ae165  

 

I can’t wait to see all of your beautiful patterned legs! (not in a weird way…)

Emma x

*Features press sample, see disclaimer

 

 

Outfit Details

Olive Clothing khaki wool mini skirt £48

Gambettes Box patterned tights £13.90 (for two pairs)

Hollister black turtle neck (similar)

Accessorize black wool beret £12

Primark black loafers (similar)

 

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A weekend in Dorset

Walking along jagged cliffs, breathing in sea air, and drinking lots of wine in cosy pubs with open fires. Have I just described your perfect weekend? Because I have definitely just described mine.

There are so many beautiful places in the UK to explore, and Dorset is one I’ve barely touched (despite living just down the road… #embarrassing) I spent last weekend with my boyfriend’s family in West Bay, which I was very excited to find out, was where they filmed Broadchurch!

We went on the most beautiful walk along the cliffs on Sunday morning (photos below) and I wore my fave new FILA colour-block sleeve jumper, which you can buy here. I hope you like my photo diary below!

Emma x

Outfit details

ASOS Fila Sweatshirt with colour block sleeves £55

Patagonia Grey Recycled wool hat £25

Accessorize Sterling Silver earrings £10

 

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How to wear yellow

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I am (very) prone to wearing a lot of black.

Anyone else scared of bright colours? Cause I am TERRIFIED.

But this year, I am embracing ‘terrified’, so hence, in this post, I’m wearing bright colours! If you’re a bit wary like me, team a bright jumper with black jeans and accessories so the colour is the focus of the outfit. Et voila, you’ve nailed it!

This gorgeous mustard/ochre yellow jumper is from Oasis and it’s a perfect colour to wear in time for Spring. (Basically just tryna dress like a daffodil)

What fashion fears are you going to conquer this year?

Outfit details

Oasis Cable Knit jumper in Bright Yellow £36

ASOS Brixton Womens Baker Boy hat £40 (perfect for small heads!)

Urban Outfitters BDG black skinny jeans £45

Urban Outfitters Western Leather belt £28

ASOS Vagabond black leather boots £80

 

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A festive weekend at The Hoxton, Shoreditch

London in the Winter can be a right old sweat. Rushing in the rain to catch the next tube, ripping off layer after layer for fear of over-heating and then two stops later, putting layer after layer back on for fear of freezing to death outside.

But the minute I got to The Hoxton, Shoreditch, I instantly felt relaxed. The atmosphere is cool and chilled-out due to the bare concrete architecture and open-plan lobby complete with velvet Chesterfields, naked light bulbs and wire bookcases lined with novels.  The huge roaring fires are so inviting, it’s impossible not to drop all your bags, sink into an armchair and stay for the week. We settled down into a cosy red leather, diner-style booth and devoured a Mac and Cheese (much needed after a strenuous journey).

Our room was funky and modern with a beautiful 60s style desk complete with branded mugs and (my fave) a Roberts Radio! Ngl, we spent most of the first afternoon just chilling in the room (so lethargic after my Mac and Cheese, plus it probs didn’t help that I’d had my Christmas party the night before…). And anyway, why would you leave a room that has unlimited tea bags, pillows made from clouds and Chill fm’s soothing mix of Massive Attack and Sigur Ros (srsly tho, is this a real radio station?).

We’d decided to stay in The Hoxton, Shoreditch for two reasons:

  1. Because we were going to see a play in the evening called The Ferryman. (If you know me, you’ll know I LOVE theatre, and this was one of the best plays I’ve ever seen, hands down)
  2. Because one of my life’s hopes, dreams and ambitions has always been to go to Columbia Road Flower Market. Ohhh the hours I’ve pondered over tulips, freesias and tiny, delicate cyclamen! And as luck would have it, it was just round the corner! (lol jk this was in the plan)

Finally, my day had come.

And on that day, those 24 hours that I’d chosen, one tiny little day out of 365, it decided to bloody tip it down.

But I REFUSED to let that stop me. This was my big flower market day! (huge shout out to my boyfriend at this point who stumbled after me in the torrential rain taking blogger pics while simultaneously trying to prevent our precious new lens from getting wet lol – what a gem)

Beyond the forest of Christmas trees (not quite a forest, more cut down and popped through one of those netting machines like a french sausage) were festive displays of red berries, eucalyptus stalks, pussy willow and poinsettias all shining out in glorious, wet, Christmassy joy!

It. Was. Wonderful.

I couldn’t leave without buying a seasonal bunch myself, despite knowing it would only cause me more chaos come the rain rush, layers on, layers off, sweaty tube chaos debacle. If only there was another Hoxton Shoreditch to greet me with an open fire and Mac and Cheese when I got home!

 

Outfit details:

Zara mohair jumper £39.99 (similar)

Zara red round bag £39.99 (similar)

Mango red slingback shoes £59.99 

Hollister white turtle neck £4.99

Urban Outfitters jeans £50.00 

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Winter layering

This one time in the office a colleague came up to me and said ‘do you know what I like about you, Emma? You’re all about comfort over style.’

Er, RUDE.

But also, 100% true.

Major respect for gals out there wandering round in knee-high boots in sub-zero temperatures, but personally I can’t be bothered. I’m all about cosy knits, long trousers, and polo necks. Anyone else have the never ending nightmare of wearing a wool coat because it’s -5 outside, but as soon as you get on a bus/enter a shopping centre/have a coffee, you get terrible Winter sweats?! I’m telling you, layering is the way forward.

This rust orange jumper from Native Youth is super snug and perfect for shoving over a black turtle neck.

I fell in love with these Topshop heritage trousers, they fit really well so they’re brill for you gals out there with short legs and a big bum (like me). I love how the orange jumper picks up the colour in the trousers – just team them with some classic Topshop loafers and your outfit is absolutely sorted.

 

Outfit details:

Native Youth rust coloured jumper – £60.00

Topshop Heritage trousers – £39

Topshop black loafers (similar) – £45

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A date at Skate – ice-skating at Skate Southampton

Are you even celebrating Christmas if you haven’t been ice-skating yet?

Skate Southampton and Mogul’s Alpine Bar is based in the new development of West Quay. The ice rink itself is perfectly sized to not be intimidating for first-time skaters, but not so small that you’re forever colliding into strangers (I was kindly reminded of the time I pulled a 12 year old boy to the floor by grabbing his hood because it was the nearest thing to hold onto… reflexes are funny things).

You buy your tickets from the ‘cable car’ where I was relieved to see gloves on sale (I stupidly forgot mine) in case of falling on your hands and knees. Then, it’s all about 3 pairs of thick knitted socks and getting those skates on.

I cling onto the edge desperately, as 4 year olds whizz past me at speeds of 40mph. My boyfriend is too busy skating backwards and doing twirls across the rink (despite never skating before, typical) to notice my inherent fear of falling on my bum like a poor little beetle on his back, legs waggling frantically in the air.

But 20 mins later, I’m hurtling round the rink on my own with the confidence of Lewis Hamilton at the F1 Grand Prix.

Such is the emotional roller-coaster that is ice-skating.

Mogul’s Alpine bar is the best place to cosy up in afterwards! I felt like I’d just come off the slopes and found shelter in the nearest log cabin. Twinkling lights, wooden stools, fur throws and of course, the heavy aroma of mulled wine makes for the perfect festive hideaway.

Skate Southampton is the best day out: hours of fun on the ice, mulled wine in the snug alpine bar and why not treat yourself to a meal at WestQuay afterwards too!

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Gucci earrings at Goldsmiths

From cabinets of Gucci earrings, to displays of Hugo Boss watches, as you walk into Goldsmiths Southampton, it’s impossible not to be tempted. The shop has an air of sophistication and you know you won’t be leaving without buying a really special piece that you’ll forever remember where it’s from. You don’t go to Goldsmiths to get cheap jewellery you wear once because it’s ‘in fashion’ – do ya know what I mean?

The new look Southampton store has doubled in size since its recent reopening, meaning more space to look around and ponder the beautiful jewellery from counter to counter. (And to have a glass of champagne while you look, of course!) There’s such an array of classic jewellery, it’s impossible to know where to start. But once you’ve overcome the sheer joy of being in a room so full of diamonds, you can start to appreciate the individual pieces and the detail.

Having tried on a couple of Hugo Boss watches that didn’t fit, (I don’t own a watch so thought this would be a brilliant idea, but then remembered that my wrists are outrageously small so watches never fit #SmallWristProblems) I thought I might as well try on the Gucci range, *sigh*. It was displayed so beautifully on studded, burgundy, velvet cushions. There were classic Gucci charm bracelets, ornate pendants, and watches with constellation backgrounds (which I LOVED). I also tried on an incredibly delicate gold bangle that bent onto your wrist in the most malleable way, but never lost its shape (amazing?!).

After much deliberation, I opted for a pair of simple Gucci symbol earrings – timeless, elegant and classic.  Obviously you can’t try them on for hygiene reasons, but you’re given a special earring stick (technical term ofc.) to hold them up so you can see what they look like.  Andy, the Store Manager, went out of his way to help me make my decision, and was so informative about all the jewellery in the Goldsmiths shop. I even saw an identical pendant necklace that Kate Mids wore on her wedding day #fangirl.

I actually felt like a Made In Chelsea star throughout the whole experience – obviously I mean that in the BEST way. The service in Goldsmiths was outstanding, the jewellery is absolutely divine, the packaging is exquisite and my Gucci earrings are legit my new favourite thing and I haven’t taken them off since. If you’re considering buying that certain someone that certain something, pop into Goldsmiths, even if just for a look but it’ll be hard to prise yourself away when those diamonds start twinkling.

 

 

 

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Pork Crackling and Apple Sauce at The Pig, Brockenhurst

It’s hard not to feel autumnal as you walk up the gravel track among the firs and the conifers, pine cones scattered over the dewy lawn. Despite me getting overexcited at a sign for the ‘Kitchen Garden’, it is FREEZING, and the smell of a woodburning fire entices us indoors, enveloping us in warmth.

The Pig in Brockenhurst is a small hotel with a focus on food. Nearly everything on the menu is grown on site or foraged-for nearby, so whether it comes from the forest or the coast, you know it’s as fresh as possible.

The interior is traditional with an informal twist. Boars’ heads frame the walls and colourful crystal glasses are lined up on antique dressers, but the menus tied up in garden string and napkin rings made from newspaper make for a ‘homemade’ feel. The sun-filled conservatory with bright, mis-matching floor tiles covered in potted plants is reminiscent of my Grandpa’s potting shed, though probably a bit more elegant.

But the real reason behind The Pig’s popularity, is the food. Their 25 mile menu (the idea being that most of the produce comes from within a 25 mile radius) boasts lamb and pork from Romsey, fresh Lymington crab and tomatoes from the Isle of Wight. All the herbs and most of the veg come straight from the Kitchen Garden, hence one section of the menu being called ‘Mostly Picked This Morning’. Try the curried cauliflower and Brocks Eggs – you won’t be disappointed – and whatever you do, don’t leave The Pig without trying some pork, or at least some crackling and apple sauce! The ‘Tomahawk’ pork chop is so flavoursome and you can mop up the sauce with a chunk of warm bread and Garden Herb-Infused Oil.

The Pig manages to combine simple, natural ingredients with an elegant, quirky touch that leaves your tastebuds tingling for hours. If, like me, you dream of roasting parsnips and boiling beetroot fresh from your vegetable patch, head to The Pig for inspiration. And while you’re at it, grab an armchair in front of the fire, and order yourself some ‘Piggy Bits’ (how do you expect me to dream about my Kitchen Garden, when I haven’t even tried  the pea and ham hummus yet?!).

 

 

 

Outfit details:

ZARA checked dress – £29.99

ACCESSORIZE black wool beret – £12

PRIMARK black wooden heel boots – £20 (similar ones from Office if you click this link!) 

 

 

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