Finding Wedding Guest Dress Solutions in The Summer Sales

 

A friend of mine is going to a wedding in Italy next weekend (lucky girl!).  Not only does it involve taking wedding-appropriate attire on a flight, the wedding is being held in a forest near Lake Como.

 

I mean, it sounds utterly divine.  The type of wedding we all dream of being invited to, or have ourselves, but it does throw up a challenge.  It’s going to be hot, hot, hot, but she will still want to keep her cool and definitely look like she is.

 

So ‘a friend in need’ and all that with just 14 days till flight, I thought I’d help a girl out!

 

Luckily the sales are on, so that’s where I’ve been looking this afternoon.  Who wants to spend any more money than they need to and as the weather hasn’t been great in recent weeks retailers have plenty of bargains to choose from.

 

The IG dm ‘briefing’ said that she would love a dress, below the knee (could be maxi), light-weight (cotton would be ideal) with sleeves.

 

All prices show full and sale price where relevant and please note pieces from And Other Stories are lower on their own website than they are in the links below. I don’t know, the software was having a moment!

 

Here’s what I found.  I’ve added accessories too so you get the full picture.

 

Before anyone says it’s not cotton, I know, but it’s a gorgeous colour dress, in a fantastic style and it meets the brief in length and arm cover!  Also, it would look super cute on my stunning friend who would rock this, showing off her fab curves!  I’ve added more colour, because why not and I really like the sandals I found in the sale.

 

Cotton is a good fabric to pick when temperatures rise.  Marks and Spencer is having a great season and their sales are closely followed by devoted fans, so be quick.  I like the idea of this maxi shirt dress because it ticks the box of having sleeves that my friend is looking for, but also it’s a nice length and I think you’ll get more than wedding wear out of it.  Yes, it’s slightly more casual and could easily be worn with trainers, but add a fascinator and some heels and you can take it up a notch.  I’ve paired it here with a green summer bag, but you could swap this for a satin clutch if you need a more formal touch.

 

 

I absolutely adore this next outfit.  A black and white kaftan, below the knee in cotton, so perfect for wearing in hot weather.  I love the idea of topping it off with simple, glamorous accessories – dark sunglasses and a headband – pop coloured sandals on your feet (my friend wants block heels), grab a swing bag and you’re good to go.

 

 

My last suggestion with another sale dress features a gorgeous tile print, matched with the latest beaded accessories trend.  For contrast I’ve gone with white, which is an easier option than trying to find colours that match or looking for pieces in Magenta which is the main colour in the dress.  It’s also easier on the eye and I couldn’t find a suitable hat or fascinator in the sales so opted for a pair of beaded hair clips (my friend has beautiful long, dark hair) and these will look magic as the day-time formalities move into evening celebration.

 

That’s it from me this gloriously sunny Friday.  I really need to hit the garden.  Hope you like the ideas.  Let me know if you  have any questions and if you’re going to a wedding and have some tips pop them in the comment space below.

Have a fab weekend.

Much love

Gail xx

The Long and The Short Of It

notgivin.com

Our trip to the Amalfi Coast was everything I hoped it would be.  Picture postcard scenery, beautiful weather, delicious food.  It was a real treat and I’ll write up a blog post with all the details of how we got on soon.  In the meantime, as I know a lot of people have their holiday plans ahead of them, I wanted to give you feedback on the clothes situation and in particular what I felt I didn’t have.

 

Obviously, I had done a little bit of shopping before I went away and had focused on dresses and swimming costumes mainly.  However, when I got there I found that the most worn item, apart from two blue dresses, was my trust pair of denim shorts.

 

They’re just the easiest item to pack and perhaps the pair above are getting a little short for me now (!), but I still reached for them nearly every day.

 

To be honest I wished I’d taken more pairs.

 

I didn’t expect that to be the case, but for sightseeing, general trudging to and from the beach, having a pair of shorts was the handiest, simplest and coolest item to pair up with T.shirts and strappy vests in the day and dressed up with light flowing blouses or crisp cotton shirts and piles of jewels in the evening.

 

notgivinin.com

 

Daisy dukes aren’t everyone’s cup of tea.  I understand that. But I’ve taken a look around and retailers this season have taken this on board and introduced longer length denim shorts.

 

If you don’t want to reveal your thighs to the world then a length that ends just above the knee can give you a more flattering silhouette.  Takes me back to the cycling shorts of the eighties!

 

Marks & Spencer has even introduced a Sculpt and Lift Denim Short. Made in cotton, the denim has added stretch so that it is kind to your curves and helps accentuate your figure.  See the red pair in the reel below.

 

It’s worth trying on shorts with a nice pair of wedge espadrilles. The perfect summer shoe, they generally are easier to wear than strappy heels and can elongate the leg.

 

What do you think?  Fancy trying some on?  Here’s a selection of shorts on the high street.

 

Have a great weekend.

 

Gail xx

I Got Leathered

Tuesday was a beautiful day, don’t you think?  Better than pleasant, with sunshine from the moment we got up til the time we went to bed.  Obviously a state of bliss was never going to last and we’ve had solid rain the past two days. It rather sums up British Summertime, you just never what it’s going to throw at you.  So, when I hopped on a train to London last weekend I took my new BFF to meet an old BFF (calm down Spilly, it’s just a joke) and for once I was properly dressed.

 

Having a leather jacket to hand when the weather turns slightly foul, literally lifted my spirits.  The addition of a garment that’s cool and edgy, stylish and simple has been one of my favourite purchases this summer.  The black leather biker jacket is iconic, worn by everybody who’s anybody, and now by little ole me.

 

I am one of those people who covets from afar for a while before going “balls deep” and buying a luxury item.  I’m guessing most of us do this, unless we’re spending someone else’s money, then for some reason it’s always so much easier!

 

I’m the same with retailer All Saints.  If I had pots of cash lying around and wanted a new edgy look in varying degrees of grey and black, I would head to my nearest store.  So, it was genuinely a surprise to me last month, when I stopped by All Saints in Bath for a mooch and came out an hour later with a new black biker jacket.

 

I couldn’t resist.  That and I would have felt quite sheepish saying “I’ll think about it” after I had a shop assistant to myself, gathering up every leather jacket in sight for me to try on.    She had been really helpful too.  Did you know that when you buy a leather jacket, a rule of thumb to knowing that you’re wearing the right size, is to check the arms. The leather here should be tight to the arm.  I didn’t know that.  Also, leather “gives” once you start wearing it, so don’t worry if it feels a little stiff, it will loosen.

 

And I can totally say that has been true of my new jacket.  As you do with new purchases, I’ve worn it at every opportunity and it has become softer, looser and even better than when I bought it.

 

It is a new favourite in my wardrobe.  Worn with jeans, obvs, but also over dresses and with skirts, adding a little edginess to more feminine pieces this summer.  I’m hoping this love affair lasts, it’s gonna have to as I exchanged £318.00 of my hard-earned cash to pay for it.  But, I reckon I’ll get a good cost per wear ratio out of it, Autumn is approaching and it will be the first jacket I reach for I’m sure.  I’ve seen that culottes are still on trend and oversized belted wide-leg trousers….and don’t get me started on long dresses and boots.

 

Here’s the full range if you’re interested and have a great weekend all.

 

Gail xx

Legging It Into Spring

It’s Good Friday and I’ve woken up with a banging headache.  Doesn’t bode well, does it?  The first morning of a four day holiday and I’ve already taken two paracetamol and two ibuprofen.

 

I’m not feeling or looking my best, so in an attempt to brighten the mood I’m trying to put some goodness back into my face, from the outside in, with a gorgeous smelling Honey & Oat 3-In-1 Scrub Mask from the Body Shop.  I might be feeling crap on the inside, but I better be beaming from afar.

 

This week’s post is about loosening up on the trouser scene.  Now that we are in full Spring-time mode I really want to ‘stand down’ my jeans. Give ’em a break.  Put them in the wash for starters (!) and try to wear something different.

 

If you’re a fan of the old black and white movies you can’t but admire the capri pant, cigarette trouser and cropped chino of yesteryear icons.  Think Audrey Hepburn and Brigitte Bardot, because I can’t put their images on here or I’ll be sued.

 

There’s something so feminine about revealing a little ankle.  Worn with pointy flats, trainers that don’t see the inside of a gym, or platform sandals, a pair of cotton trousers can take you anywhere.  I’d like a pair to take me to the French Riviera or the Amalfi Coast, but that won’t be happening this year.  Still, we can but dream…

 

Photo by linh-nguyen/Unsplash

 

So this week I started, in earnest, the swop over of clothing in the wardrobe from winter to spring/summer, with the aim of digging out the two pairs of cropped capri pants that I have (in blue and beige). Only they weren’t there. It looks like I’ve bundled them into the charity bag in a moment of madness. In truth I think the blue trousers were too small and the beige pair too big and it probably seemed like a good idea at the time, but now I’m caught short. Pun intended.

 

A very quick look in the shops has revealed that options include a roll-up hem, which I’m not interested in. I’m looking to slim and lengthen the leg and drawing attention three quarters of the way down will just cut it off.  No, I’m looking for a classic cut.  Something like one of these:

 

In fact any one of these, delivered to my door, would be fab.  So that’s the plan.  I’m off to check out sizes before I roll up my sleeves and hurtle towards the cooking fest that is Easter.  Perhaps I should order anything post chocolate consumption!

Have a great Easter everyone!

Gail xx

April Showers, I’m Ready For Ya

I have happy news!  No, I can’t guarantee that you’ll be able to wear flip flops any time soon and I can’t turn water into wine either. However, I am pleased to say that one of my Not Givin In objectives has been achieved.  The search is over.  I’ve found MY trench coat. Whoop, whoop.  I won’t need to mention it again!

 

I’ve been on a search for some time (I blogged about it last September and have been looking for the trench since the nineties), so I’m thrilled to say that I found a season interim coat that is long enough to cover me from wet weather showers and warm enough to keep out the chill factor, between wearing sun tops and snow coats.

 

I had, in all honesty, given up the ghost, then while looking at cropped jeans in Next (their selection is really good this season) I turned around to see this gorgeous trench.  It was a bit like Cinderella turning to find Prince Charming.  One look and I was hooked.

 

Look at the smug face on her!

 

I really do love it though.  It is oversized, so it’s a bit slouchy, dead comfy, and I don’t feel like a bag of washing on the inside trying to get out, because the fabric is fluid yet firm.   I don’t normally buy petite.  I’m 5′ 3″ don’t you know.  However, the regular 10 was too oversized, from the waist down, and I was billowing slightly.  I also don’t normally wear a 10 in coats and jackets, so you can tell it’s big.

 

This style has been copied from the catwalk by many retailers this season, taking it’s lead from Celine’s trench coat I believe and it has all the classic detail – double breasted button fasting, large buckle bet, and buckled cuffs.  As you can see, I went for neutral, because I wanted a classic colour, but this coat comes in black, blue and a black/white option.  It was £65, but a fairy godmother spotted me in store when I first saw the coat and asked if I wanted £10 off my first online order.  Uh, yes please!

 

 

If you too feel like taking shelter from showers, here’s some more ideas, with links to stores.  I have picked out classic belted styles, more oversized coats (including several from Next, if you like mine), different colour options, and some that are currently in sale.

Have a great weekend.

 

Gail xxx