All I Want For Christmas… I Got

The most wonderful time of the year is breaking your neck to get the best presents for the people you love, and to see them open them and watch as a wave of happiness washes over them. It is humbling to buy slippers for relatives and find them utterly ecstatic at the thought of comfortable feet. This is the joys of being older and more simpler gifts being a pleasure to unwrap. Socks, pyjamas, dressing gowns, all things designed for comfort and warmth.

My family wanted this for me and I was grateful, I unwrapped fur lined slippers and fluffy dressing gowns and pyjamas with polar bears on them. I got socks and candles and quite a selection of perfumes. My real techniques make up brushes were a surprise from someone that I didn’t think knew me well and funky little trinkets that I wouldn’t think to buy myself but absolutely love. My sister bought me YSL make up, my mother Dior fragrance, my aunt Versace miniatures. All these wonderful gifts designed to make me happy, comfortable and feeling good.

I’ll tell you the one and only thing that meant the most to me amidst all the wonderful presents and gift vouchers, money and chocolates, the one thing that stood out and brought a tear to my eye. A card.

It was a card with ‘Daughter’ written on the front from a man who is not my father and has never desired to be, but who I’ve always craved acceptance and pride from. A man who, this Christmas it seems, finds me equal to his own flesh and blood for the first time in nineteen years. That card that cost £1.50 maybe, meant everything to me. That was truly Christmas as I’d never experienced it before.

~

We become very blind in the weeks before Christmas, stressed and running about buying presents for our loved ones, we forget in the bath of consumerism that simple things mean the most and this Christmas the simplest things made my world complete.

Enjoy the rest of 2016 and have a fabulous New Year.

X

I Fell In Love With The White Company

I find it funny how I’ve changed so much from a H&M loving poor student to a Selfridges shopper in a few short years. It’s not that I have a lot of money (I really don’t), I just don’t waste as much now as I used to. It was a dream of mine to be able to buy what I wanted (within reason) once I left my university debts behind and I feel like I’ve achieved that. I buy myself something major once a month and it keeps me happy, like a reward for living with just enough to get by for so long. Nothing flamboyant, always sensible but still in fashion so that I feel good about myself, because let’s face it we need to feel good about ourselves.

I fell for the ‘throw away fashion’ of a few years ago, buying armfuls of cheaply made clothing from a sweat shop outlet, I wasn’t too educated about their working conditions until much later but now I can barely bring myself to set foot in the store let alone buy anything, it’s like fur for me, it shouldn’t be made, or the workers should be respected and given adequate payment and conditions. I digress. 


I think working where I do has changed my perspective, I process a combination of cheaper made products and designer along side eachother, and you can see a clear difference in quality, so I started seeing clothing and accessories differently. No longer did I see that buying expensive items was superficial and unnecessary, I saw an extension of my mind, labelling myself as valuable instead of worthless, a way to show that I respect myself and my earnings.

A few days ago I placed an order on Selfridges.com for a White Company jumper dress and a Ted Baker handbag totalling £267. I felt awful when the payment went through as I don’t spend that much in one chunk I tend to spread it across the month, but now that they have arrived I feel I have two extremely good quality items and neither that I will wear only once. I couldn’t believe the feel of a wool and cashmere garment so much that I wondered into The White Company store in Grand Central Station. I saw the colour scheme, white, grey and black surrounded by natural wood decor with fragrance emanating from the candles and I fell head over heels for the quality and plain, classic style of everything. 


I had heard bloggers raving about it on YouTube but always thought it was for older classy, rich women, the kind with pure cotton bed sheets and specialist tea from Harrods, but really how silly do I feel? It can be for anyone, even if out of price range for some people their reductions during sales are extremely reasonable. I’m a happy little shopper.

Happy holidays to all and have a prosperous New Year.

X

[images 1&2: thewhitecompany.com, image 3: mine]

My Love For Topshop

I am a relentless self-shopper, I admit it. The high street is my happy place, I go there when I’m sad, when I’m happy, whenever I get paid, it’s the one place I can go and not feel silly walking around by myself. It’s my therapy, my self prescribed medication. I love having the activity afterwards of putting outfits together in order to make myself feel good inside.

When I was at University I had a student discount for hundreds of shops and I just got to like Topshop. Everything fit me and somehow everything went together. In the plain jeans I felt fashionable, and when you’re 19 living off a student loan, that is not easy to do. The prices go up all the time and fashion goes out of the window when you need to pay your rent and buy equipment for your course. They made it so easy to shop in one shop and have several outfits for the week!

My picks this week;

Trumpet Sleeve Top
Clean Rose Gold Watch
Embroidered Jamie Jeans

Prices nowadays don’t stop me strolling in there for my Jamie Jeans, my ballet flats and novelty sweatshirts because it’s always been my favourite. I call it high end high street, because a lot of people I meet wonder why I spend £40 on one pair of jeans but they don’t know the struggle of finding a pair that actually fits! 

This week I’ve been super naughty (considering that it’s Christmas and I should be buying presents for everyone else) and I’ve cheated on Topshop with late night online shopping on Selfridges.com.

I was sitting there, feeling my knuckles worked to the bone, and in a sad/happy kind of mood, I thought to myself I don’t have many things in life but I have what I need, so shouldn’t all the things I have be the best for me? It was an unfortunate mood to be in right after pay day but it resulted in a new handbag and jumper dress. My reasoning was that my ‘best’ large handbag (I have a ‘best’ small handbag too) is too heavy for my shoulder. I like to carry a lot of stuff around with me but I’m limited with my favourite bag because it’s heavy even when it’s empty. And of course I convinced myself that I wanted a jumper dress from The White Company because it was cashmere and in the sale!

Ted Baker Shoulder Bag

Afterwards I felt a little guilty spending money on myself on things that I don’t really need and vowed to only spend the rest of my  money this month on everyone else, the way it should be at Christmas time! As you can see I favour black. If I’m going to buy something expensive it has to be black to ensure I wear it to its limit of wearability.

Wool and Cashmere Blend Jumper Dress

I was considering how much stuff is really enough, after I pressed the pay button in PayPal and sold my soul to Selfridges. My sister and I often discuss our childhood and going without certain things, we were happy children, but you can’t help notice as a child the other children have considerably more. So, when we got our first jobs and our first pay slips that was what we both did, bought things for ourselves, because we could and we wanted to, except we never stopped even when the novelty wore off. Like an addiction we couldn’t shake.

When I have too much to squeeze into my little wardrobe I donate to charity, but as you look through at all the things you never wore or used it’s difficult not to feel dumb for buying them and wasting your money in the first place. We’ve all made those cheap Primark mistake buys just because it was £4, but it never fit and you never used it. That is my excuse for spending so much on so little, when you’ve spent £199 on a handbag you will wear it for at least 365 days.

[Images and links from Topshop.com & Selfridges.com]