I get it, really I do. There’s something vaguely irritating about someone going away somewhere warm when it’s freezing here, sharing their snaps on Instagram, AND THEN writing about what they wore whilst away. Especially when quite a few of those clothes have been gifted. Maybe I should just stop right there!
Except that I love seeing other people’s holiday snaps, especially if they’re sunny. OK so maybe not the six albums of snaps that my Grandad would compile after each trip – but definitely snaps of outfits. And personally I love it when people bring me clothes that I like, as it saves me having to hunt them out for myself. It also saves me the time associated with a trip to the shops, not to mention the cost of parking and so on. So hopefully you won’t all object too much to the fact that some of the clothes were gifted to me.
The Bright Sundress
Tassel tie maxi dress Whistles (£149)
Adding a few pieces into my summer wardrobe was never going to be a bad thing. Most of our holidays over the past 20 years have been in Guernsey, Cornwall or Wales, all of which we absolutely love, but it has involved lots of t-shirts and cut-offs rather than anything glam.
So one of my first additions was this red dress (above). I loved the colour of it – it’s so vibrant and fun and with a Whistles gift card that I thought I would probably lose if I didn’t use it pronto, it gave me the perfect excuse. I don’t think that this dress is available in stores but it is online. I can find red tricky to wear for some reason. I like the idea of red trousers – but I’m not sure that they would like me. This dress somehow isn’t too challenging and the length of the straps can be altered, depending on your height, which is good as some maxi dresses are super long.
When the weather is slightly warmer, I’m going to layer a jumper and leather jacket over the top and turn it into a maxi skirt with trainers.
Just after this photograph was taken I nearly walked into a camel. I mean, it’s not like they’re huge or anything is it?
The Shorts and Long Sleeved Top
I thought that you would all appreciate a good look up my nose! Well it was either that or seeing my legs in the all their glory with the sun shining right on them. Honestly, my nostrils were the lesser of the two evils!
I bought these shorts from 2birds Dubai for about £10. 2birds is a fashion and accessories label run by Sue and Caroline, two Australian ladies. They have some great pieces – round baskets, cool jewellery, lots of pom poms, neon and tassels. They are definitely worth a visit if you happen to be in the area. The shorts are great – one size fits all, plenty of room in the leg so they are flattering and an elasticated waist. Even better.
This fab neon bag was a gift from Charlie at Neon Beach Club. I met Charlie last year when she came to my first pop up and she has very kindly gifted some of her beautiful pieces to me since then. I like to think that she benefits from our friendship but thinking about it, I’m not entirely sure that she does. I think that I ought to do something about that! I bought the top last year from H&M and there are already similar popping up in stores.
Neon Copelands from Air & Grace (£149)
Now you know me and a good pair of trainers. Trainers are never very far from my side, or indeed my feet, and Air and Grace trainers are just so comfortable. Seriously, if you’re ever contemplating buying some trainers, do take a look. I walk for miles in mine so I’m not just saying that.
Again, these trainers were gifted to me as a result of a friendship that developed at my first pop up. Claire, who runs Air & Grace, is such a lovely soul, has a great eye for design and knows all that there is about trainers, having worked in the footwear business for many years.
As testament to these super comfortable trainers, I didn’t even bother wearing socks with them the first time that I wore them as I knew that they wouldn’t rub my feet. And they didn’t. Now some may find not wearing socks with trainers gross but I just don’t like the feel of trainer socks. Weird I know.
The humungous building in the background is the Atlantis Hotel which is famous the world over. There’s a bit of a debate as to whether it is the largest in the world or whether the one the Bahamas is bigger. Now with Dubai liking to have the biggest/fastest/tallest/largest/most expensive of everything in the world, this doesn’t go down well. So they’re building an even bigger hotel next door, just to be sure. Like you do.
The Long Sleeved Midi Dress
I think that it was even before I’d planned our trip, that Aspiga asked me whether I would like to work with them this year. I knew of Aspiga, having seen the brochure drop through my door many times, but I suppose with not having really been in the market for super “hot holiday” type clothing, I hadn’t really invested in them previously. But then I started to take a closer look and I saw some pieces that really appealed to me.
What I really had in mind for this trip were pieces that offered me enough coverage to be culturally appropriate and which could be worn to the beach, but which weren’t suitable only for the beach. I love beachwear but I prefer the versatility of being able to wear the clothing out and about too – and I wanted to feel a little bit glam and a bit less shorts and t-shirt (for this trip at least). So this lola embroidered cotton kaftan ticked the box perfectly plus (hello Mrs Predictable) it was blue and white.
This style has been really popular and there’s currently a waiting list for it but if you like the idea of one, just pop on over to the site where you can add your name to it.
The Hi-Low Maxi Skirt and Vest
Frida skirt navy and white Aspiga (£125) vest Topshop many years ago, sandals Asos as before
Next up, and again from Aspiga, is the Frida skirt, which is an absolute joy to wear. It is so lightweight and floaty and its just feels really beautifully feminine. I loved wearing this skirt with a really simple, and exceptionally old, vest from Topshop. I can’t wait for the weather to be warm enough to wear it here.
The Maxi Dress in the Colour of the Season
Lenu Maxi Dress (£95) with previous season Air & Grace espadrilles
The Air and Grace espadrilles that I’m wearing above were the first pair of Air & Grace shoes that I bought. I should find out later on in the week whether they will be available again this summer – but hopefully they will. The maxi dress is again from Aspiga. It’s got a great length to it so would be perfect for anyone who struggles to find dresses long enough plus it has plenty of volume in the skirt so it’s not too close fitting and sweaty feeling. Oh and lilac is having a HUGE moment right now.
I had a bit of an earring splurge at Topshop before we went away. That’s how I added the “glamour” part to my outfits. Original huh? Huge Perspex earrings.
Perspex petal drop earring (£12.50) Topshop
The High Split Maxi Skirt and Sporty Tee
This skirt was one that I bought from Asos last summer. It has a huge split up it and a short lining underneath for modesty purposes. There’s a (sort of) similar one here, also from ASOS and which is £25, so a really good price. I wanted to stop this outfit from being too floral and flouncy so I bought a bit of a “sporty spice” type t-shirt before I went away, just to add contrast. I love the blue in this skirt too and wanted to pick it up in a top.
The Silk Printed Maxi and Metallic Tee
And last but not least, I borrowed this gorgeous silk printed skirt from Ridley London to photograph whilst I was away. Ridley make the most beautiful dresses, skirts and blouses out of a fabulous selection of liberty prints. If you can’t see what you like in the fabric that you like on the website, just call the store and they can take an order over the ‘phone.
Hush star T (£35)
So that’s my somewhat lengthy outfit round up. I suspect that it may be a few weeks before I get a chance to wear any of these things again but when that warmer weather finally arrives, I’ll be ready and waiting. And I hope that these bits and bobs have maybe given you some ideas too, even if it’s a case of following the principles and tweaking them to your liking.
Oh and over on Instagram I’ve saved all the stories of me packing for our return to the UK. You may like to see the clothes in the “flesh” and I also thought that it was a good idea in case the suitcases went walk about. Until next time! xxx