My husband is away this weekend and you know the first thing that I did when he left? Switched the heating on. Bliss, the house is warm and toasty and the towels are dry. I received his text that he had arrived at the airport safely and was eating an almond croissant, just as I returned from an 8 mile run in the rain. OK, so my discomfort was totally self inflicted but I thought that it would set the tone for the weekend – me home alone with three children – painful! Actually it has been quite fun -(nothing to do with the fact that one of them was at a sleepover last night and at a party today for a few hours!) We are really having quite a peaceful end to what has been a really hectic week.
I am currently shopping for, and styling models, who will be assisting me at a style evening that I am doing at Edgbaston High School for Girls on 7th October. I have 7 models and we will be covering all sorts of trends and talking about how to style the different body shapes. I quite fancy putting all of the models in a red dress and have them come out to “Lady in Red”. How cheesy would that be? I think that I might have to do it, just because, if nothing else, it will make me laugh. I have appointments with two more of the models next week and have a day to buy the things for my “skinted and minted” section plus buying pieces from new brands to show to the audience and pulling together a capsule wardrobe. There are then the remaining models to style, the planning for the order in which I will show the trends, finalising accessories, sorting the music and deciding what I am going to wear. I don’t really ever like that bit – largely because I tend to put the models in the best pieces that I find, leaving me the “not so best” pieces to choose from. It’s a hard life. I have to say that the girls in the stores in Birmingham have been great to me – particularly the ones who are lending the clothes to me for the models. I know that they will get free advertising from it but it’s a great help to me. I suppose the fact that I have known a lot of them since I used to shop with my eldest, over ten years ago, also helps. At that time I didn’t really know anyone else with a baby and so I would head into town for a weekly peruse of what was out there. Since many of the girls are now Managers,that time was, as it transpires, wisely spent!
The event at Edgbaston High School on 7 October is to be followed by an event at Harvey Nichols in Birmingham in early November. It is a fund raising event and, unfortunately for me HN have insisted that I am only allowed to style the models in clothes and accessories from Harvey Nichols. Such a crying shame! I must say – I can’t wait for that one either. I think that I might just be a little bit like a kid in a sweet shop. The bags, the shoes, the…well everything really. I wonder whether they will lend me anything to wear – don’t suppose that it would hurt to ask.
The Harvey Nichols event will then be followed by an event of my own on 26th November, also to be held in Edgbaston, where again I will be styling models in the trends for A/W ’10 but with a greater emphasis on seasonal outfits. I loved the event like that which I did in the summer. It was full of my friends and clients and even my Mum modelled for me – bless her. I think the guests appreciate that I am not all about showing size 6, very tall models, but rather using ladies with curves – and not always necessarily where they would want them! Showing people how to make the best of themselves, disguising a tummy, slimming down their hips and putting them in outfits that they never would have chosen for themselves, only to see their faces light up, is a massive reward.
So, here are a few of the items that I have found out and about on my travels this week and which I really like….
This sequin long line vest from the M&S Autograph range comes in 5 different colours. At £12 it is really good value and has enough stretch in it to be quite supportive and give a smooth line. The sequins look great peeping through a sheer top, v-neck top or wrap dress. So that’s my piece of underwear for the week…
This dress is from LK Bennett and costs £195. The picture doesn’t do it justice but it is a great copy of the Prada print that they have used and it is in a fabulous 1950’s shape. The shoes that I have chosen to go with it are…
these Also from LK Bennett and costing £150. The chunky heel will look great with the dress, to which I have also added a skinny belt and cropped cardigan.
As for knitwear, my favourite piece this week is this asymetric poncho from Jigsaw. It can be worn in lots of different ways, even as a dress believe it or not and it’s one of those pieces that is really quirky and difficult to work out how to put on. I always love those pieces because it shows that they are not boring.
These are my favourite boots of the moment. Also from Jigsaw and costing £79 (that’s a lie – I’m not going to put the true price in case my husband reads it) but they are a fabulous colour and great for those of you who have more shapely calves and can’t fit into a standard size boot width. They are very soft and can be pushed down for more of a slouched effect. The heel isn’t too hight and yes, I think that I might find it difficult to hand them back – hence the lie above…And for my final piece, well it had to be really didn’t it?…
A camel coat from Hobbs, costing £279. I remained resolute that I wasn’t going to fall in love with a camel coat and fortunately, the colour of this coat doesn’t suit me but I have to say, it is beautiful. It has cashmere in it and is the kind of coat that, when you put it on, you won’t want to take it off. They are selling fast so my top tip is, if you think that you might quite like one, order it now whilst there is still 20% off at Hobbs and then if you change your mind well, you’ve lost nothing.
One other thing that I have done whilst my husband is away is to carry on with our Saturday night ritual of opening a bottle of fizz. Being the pathetic drinker that I am, I only managed one glass before giving up. It just didn’t feel right a) drinking it from my own glass rather than nicking his and b) drinking it whilst sitting on a child’s chair trying to get number 3 to eat her dinner by reading her Peppa Pig stories. So I put it away, bubbles still fizzing and then wondered whether it would, even with our swanky bottle tops, still be fizzy on Monday when he returned. I decided probably not and wondered whether it could be re-fizzed in a soda stream. What do you reckon?