Monday, 22 July 2013


From Louis Vuitton's structural and ladylike approach to the trend to Asos' punk revival style kilt, checks (including plaid) are the pattern of choice for this summer. Be it large or small, geometric or horizontal, Jacobs or Ebay, the trend can be injected into the wardrobe of anyone of any age with the use of a mere silk scarf or pencil skirt. I myself have challenged the trend by purchasing a Vuitton-esque Zara jacket (see below) and digging out a tartan skirt from a lifetime ago. Today, after shamelessly visiting the cinema to watch 'Monster's University' where coincidentally I was taught the life lesson of being fearless, I visited Topshop and was exposed to the trend full frontally with an array of leggings and tops cloaked in the pattern; following this I decided to Google the term 'check.'  The word check is apparently derived from a Persian word meaning 'king,' and this, alongside my newly found enthusiasm brought about by Pixar's film, has made me feel that as subtle as checks can be, this trend should be worn boldly, gallantly and confidently. Marni here I come.

  My top high street picks for challenging the trend:

Midi Kilt- Asos/ Check Print Skirt- Zara
Check Crop Top- TheShirtGirl/ Checkered Jacquard Blazer- Zara
Wide Leg Trousers- Asos/ Monochrome Check Print Shirt- Topshop

Saturday, 20 July 2013


Although I've only just got back from my holiday I should, by now, be experiencing a severe case of post vacation blues; I must admit however it's difficult to feel so down when the British weather is even giving Portugal a run for its money! My time away consisted of numerous days at the beach, a place I left resembling a lobster-like creature (shamefully after bragging about my tanning skills) and finishing with a few days in Lisbon for cultural activities...and shopping.
I thought I'd share a few snaps of my trip to welcome you all back to StyleJam-

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Budget Shopping

It has been acknowledged, by my-self anyway, that to some extent as human beings we are never quite satisfied with anything or everything, continuously wanting more and more. Personally I know that even if I save up for months to purchase a skirt, a jumper or perhaps even a pair of new heels, afterwards I will ‘need’ something else, be it a Kenzo phone case or the latest issue of Company magazine. As an avid shopper and fashion follower I often find it difficult to invest in the ‘most happening’ trends and, if you like, dress for a champagne lifestyle on a lemonade budget. With pricey shops like Topshop and Zara, where a basic jumper, as beautiful as it may be, will roughly cost you a hefty £40, ruling the high street it’s often difficult to get value for money. Here, for all you bargain hunters and struggling fashion fanatics, I’ve compiled a list of my top stores for shopping on a budget:


Like any e-commerce site Asos is quick and easy shopping. Selling brands from Primark to Vivienne Westwood the site attracts people of all ages, styles and incomes. With dresses sold from £6, Asos is great for budget shopping, finding clothing for a multitude of occasions. I find its versatile Jersey basics, in addition to its jewellery line,in particular good value. See below for my Asos budget top picks:
Teardrop Earrings/ High Waisted Trousers/ Linen Midi Skirt/ Stepped Hem Jumper/ Oversized Sunglasses

As someone who only discovered Monki about 6 months ago I’m a relative newbie to the brand; however the store, which claims to express personality and care for the planet, is growing on me. I particularly like Monki as it sells products, which are often quite unusual and foreign to fellow high street stores i.e. their raincoat, for moderate prices e.g. their £25 blazers. Also, Monki does sell some items which, like New Look, are slightly more expensive; this allows shoppers like myself to buy a mixture of cheap basic products, which are relatively easy to accumulate, and combine them with more expensive and sophisticated pieces e.g. the Lana Blazer 

Almira Bag/ Brigitte Knit/ Micki Top/ Carrie Shirt/ Vanja Shoe
Forever 21

One of the things I love the most about Forever 21 is that unlike many other moderately priced stores, it still continues to sell the latest trends and at a good quality. Selling a vast amount of products from cocktail dresses to tracksuits it is very possible to construct outfit from the brand for under £50. Similar to Asos, Forever 21 almost spoils the consumer for choice, offering 1000’s of variations of product type. I find this trait a particularly good one as it offers customers who are on a multitude of incomes & who have their own individual style, to access good quality, on trend products, quickly and cheaply.

Moto Jacket/ Envelope Crossbody/ Chain Neckalce/ Boat Neck Top/ Floral Printed Pleated Skirt

I always find H&M a chaotic, often unorganised haven of garments which when visited, consists of a long period of time rummaging through rails and rails of standard and somewhat boring products. I do however feel that regardless of the shopping experience, H&M, well the one in my area anyway, stocks some items which would give Topshop a run for their money. Budget wise I would class H&M as reasonable, selling a mixture of high priced and relatively cheap products. I find H&M shoes and jackets in particular pretty good value for money. Here are a few of my favourite H&M budget picks: 
Sleeveless Top/ Leather Biker Jacket/ Sunglasses/ Chiffon Shirt/ Platform Boots

New Look

  I always find that New Look is a bit of controversial brand and although many may argue that it probably isn’t the greatest brand to purchase from when shopping on a budget, I’d have to disagree. I will acknowledge and agree with the fact that New Look does sell some items which come close to, if not above the £50 mark; however the majority of the stock is relatively cheap. I find that New Look does unbelievably good value shoes, selling boots for as little as £19.99- which compared to other high street stores is very little. New Look also has tendency to sell really low priced knitwear which is inevitably rather useful in the British Climate!
Skirt/ Ankle Boots/ Peplum Top/ Winged Tote Bag

T.K. Maxx

T.K. Maxx is great place to find designer clothing from the likes of Stella McCartney etc. for a reduced price. Although the website itself is useful to see a small range of their products it does not cover the same extent of garments as found in the stores; I recommend any serious bargain hunters to visit the stores themselves, which are a treasure troves of cheap designer garments, and rummage the rails for the best finds. I find that T.K. Maxx sells a good range of occasion wear, selling ball gowns, wedding and cocktail dresses at a fraction of the price elsewhere. Additionally the brand sells great quality shoes with Kurt Geiger’s sold for as little as £25. 

Linen Dress/ Ocassion Dress/ Kurt Geiger Sandals   

I have a love hate relationship with Primark. It can be said that one can never experience shopping in such a way anywhere else as they would in Primark. Shopping in an overcrowded and unorganised store at the weekend is my worst nightmare. A trip to Primark usually involves a long period of time rummaging through heaps and heaps of products and queuing, be it for the changing room, the cash register of sometimes even to get into the store itself. The thing about Primark is that although some give it a bad name, if you look around thoroughly it does actually sell some nice garments and it’s always my store of choice when purchasing pyjamas, jersey basics etc. In addition to its very low cost products, Primark has begun to feature its stock on Asos. This, to me anyway, is great news as although only a few products are currently available to buy on Asos it relieves the stress of going into the store itself, something which I’m aware puts many of the stores.


For me is the site of choice when searching for occasion wear etc. on a tight budget. Although the brand does also sell a range of more casual items such as knitwear, I find its dresses are one of the best things about the brand, selling them from as little as £7.49 (sale price.)In particular I think Missguided’s most successful garments are the most simple ones i.e. plain LBDs etc. The brand is also really good for body con products, selling bodies, dresses, skirts and tops like this for very little. Although I like the brand and feel it’s great value for money, I’m not sure how fond I am on their more casual wear pieces.

Canvas Block Heel/ Pineapple Crop Top/ Ethel Shirt/ Cross Over Dress

Ebay, for any money loving, fashion following person like myself it is pretty much a god send. With a large amount of products coming from international sellers it’s fairly easy (no IT wizardry required) for anyone to grab themselves a bargain online. Ebay allows shoppers to either ‘Buy it Now’ or ‘Bid’, either of which have certain consequences; the bidding option can be great, especially when you secure yourself an item for as little as 99p. It can also however lead to a bidding war, where the £1:50 you just bid quickly escalates to £150. Alternatively choosing to buy it (as in the product) now, eliminates the possibility of competition between other potential buyers but simultaneously eliminates the prospect of getting the product any cheaper. I find ebay a great tool for shopping on a budget as it not only allows you to purchase unloved garments from around the world, at a low price, but also provides you with the opportunity to generate your own money by selling your unwanted items. Generally I’d say ebay was rather good when on a tight shopping budget and I find it particularly useful when purchasing and locating vintage pieces etc. The site is also great for purchasing items which have sold out elsewhere- however in these situations the products often come embellished with a hefty price tag.

Celine Tee/ Perspex Clutch/ Texture Knit Jacket/ Red Envelope Bag/ Floppy Hat