Friday, 29 September 2017

Stepping Into Autumn With Esprit

autumn winter fashion form esprit

The leaves have started to change colour, the nights are getting darker and theres definitely more of a chill in the air; Autumn is certainly on its way.

Of all the seasons, Fall has to be my favourite for fashion.  I love nothing more than layering up to keep me warm and experimenting with textures and rich colour palettes.

Shopping at this time of the year is always fun but this year I'm especially looking forward to it as I'm giving my wardrobe a complete overhaul.  Online shopping is definitely the way forward if you're a busy bee like I am and  the new autumn collection at Esprit is a great place to start.

Esprit Velvet Trainers

Take these velvet trainers for example.  Available here in the jewel tones of Bordeaux Red and Navy, they're a sumptuous way to upgrade your wardrobe this autumn.  Their shape reminds me of Converse All Stars but the fabric and colours ensure that they look far more of a splurge.  Pair them with skin jeans or even a pleated shirt and an oversized jumper.

Esprit Jumper Dress

Speaking of jumpers, a knitted dress is the perfect addition to any wardrobe this autumn.  I love the soft knitted dress with appliqués in sand from Esprit here because it will layer so well with other pieces.  A lightweight jumper like this is perfect for wearing underneath a trench coat or mac with knee high boots and it would look great with a padded gilet too.

Esprit winter coat

I love to wear faux fur during the colder months because it looks so snuggly and never goes out of fashion.

The shiny down coat with a faux fur hood from Esprit ticks all the right boxes for me.  Its available in classic black and a stylish bordeaux red, both with a shiny finish that catches the light beautifully.  This is a wearable coat that you'll be able to pull out year after year.  The padded style is a total classic and I love that the designers have thought to add an elasticated belt to it to pull the wearer in at the waist; flattering, practical and stylish; what more could you want?

What pieces do you love from Esprit at the moment?  Whats your favourite thing about autumn fashion?

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Yours Clothing Plus Size BARGAIN!

This month, I have bagged the bargain of the summer; a gorgeous Yours Clothing jumper for ONLY £7!!

The Black Sweat Top with Gingham Bow Detail is part of their Limited Collection brand which brings fast, on trend plus size fashion to all of us curvy fashionistas!

The jumper combines three monochrome gingham bows with a lightweight black sweat top with classic details such as the scooped neckline and ribbed cuffs; just the right mix of stylish and sport.

It has long sleeves so its perfect for this time of year and you can layer a cami underneath for extra warmth if needs be.  Since it isn't big and bulky, it sits comfortably underneath jackets and coats so whether its an Indian summer or a crisp autumnal day, you'll be able to wear this piece.

Versatile jumpers like this one are a total staple for your autumn wardrobe.  Pair it with a black faux leather pencil skirt or jeggings and you'll be ready for whatever the day throws at you!


*Photographs by India Jackson

Monday, 18 September 2017

My Top Yours Clothing SALE Picks!

Beauties, the Yours Clothing SALE is still on and there's some real bargains to be had as there's now up to 50% OFF their gorgeous clothes.

Remember the 'Love Is The Answer' jumper that I featured in this post?  Well they've reduced it even further, down to ONLY £13.50 HERE!  Forget paying the original £26.99 girls, this one is a real bargain as you'll be able to rock it throughout all the seasons!

I've seen so many of you wearing it online and it looks so great on everyone so definitely pick one of those up if you haven't already.

There's plenty more bargains to be had including...

The Black & Electric Blue Bamboo Print Halterneck Swimsuit for an incredible £18.50 (down from £36.99)!

The White & Multi Floral Slinky Stretch Bardot Top With Button Detail which has a cool 20% off!  I wore this on a visit to The Botanist in Sheffield with the Yours Clothing blogger babes; VioletCharl and Kat.

Still got travel plans this year? Try out the Black & Multi Rose & Polka Dot Print Tankini Top with 20% off.  We all know what saving on our holiday wardrobe means... more cocktails poolside!

If you prefer a one piece, the Orange & Multi Tile Print Cold Shoulder Frill Swimsuit is a gorgeous option.  Turn heads for all the right reasons at the beach in this piece!

One of my favourite dresses that I've worn all summer has to be the Coral Cold Shoulder Swing Dress With Frill Hem which has 20% off.  This is a great investment pieces without the investment price tag because its super affordable and you'll be able to wear it year after year; this style is always in fashion!

Its also available in black, which you could easily wear with tights and a light weight cardigan going into the autumn!

Another favourite of mine this summer has been the Coral Bardot Swing Top With Elasticated Shoulders which, naturally, I wore as a dress in this post.

The Black & Multi Tropical Print Shorts were an essential in my wardrobe when I travelled to Bali this summer.  Don't miss out on them, especially at this bargain price!

There's plenty more bargains to be had over on the Yours Clothing Sale page, including many items that would be perfect to wear during the cooler months too.

Why not take a look and let me know what bargains you bag?

SHOP THE SALE HERE and check out my latest Youtube video above which features a song sang by my amazingly talented friend, Ethan Ash!

Which sale piece is your favourite?

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Flashdance The Musical at the Sunderland Empire Review

Flashdance The Musical at the Sunderland Empire Review

Flashdance The Musical arrived at the Sunderland Empire this week and I went along to the opening night to watch the star cast strut their stuff like never before!

Touring across the UK for the first time since 2011 with an all new cast, Flashdance is one production that's not to be missed.

Flashdance The Musical at the Sunderland Empire Review

Based on the world famous Paramount Pictures film, Flashdance will have you swept up in the inspiring story of young adult Alex Owens, a welder by day and 'flashdancer' by night, who embarks on achieving her dreams of becoming a professional dancer.  She is set to audition for the prestigious Shipley Dance Academy when a romance with rich boy, Nick Hurley, played by Ben Adams, sets to complicate matters.

This is a story that's all about holding on to the power of your dreams and love no matter what life throws at you.

Flashdance The Musical at the Sunderland Empire Review

Flashdance has a strong musical theatre cast with two notable leading characters; the part of Alex Owens played by Strictly Come Dancing champion Joanne Clifton and A1's Ben Adams as Nick Hurley.

Flashdance The Musical at the Sunderland Empire Review

Clifton gave a really energising performance and it was easy to get swept up in the emotion of her character, battling against her self doubt to achieve her dreams.

My guest and I knew that she was an amazing dancer from her time of Strictly but we didn't realise just how much of a fantastic singer she was too; perfectly suited to the 80's music we know and love from Flashdance.  This musical is an amazing opportunity to see her perform in a way like you haven't seen her before.

Flashdance The Musical at the Sunderland Empire Review

I must admit that it was Ben Adams who we were most excited to see, having been fans since his days in boyband A1. His distinctive voice brought a fresh approach to the character of Hurley and together with Clifton, they made a very memorable leading couple.

Flashdance The Musical at the Sunderland Empire Review

From start to finish, Flashdance will transport you back to the 80s with some of the famous songs we know and love; 'What A Feeling,' 'Maniac' and 'Gloria.'

Flashdance The Musical at the Sunderland Empire Review

We had such a fantastic night, dancing away in our seats until the end when the cast got everyone up out of their seats to dance and clap along like no one was watching.  Finishing will a well deserved standing ovation, this is one musical that's not to be missed.

Flashdance The Musical at the Sunderland Empire Review

You can see Flashdance until 16th September by booking tickets here, before it moves onto Oxford and beyond.  For the full listing, check out the official website.

How does Flashdance sound to you?  Have you seen this musical before?

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Female Intimate Health with Canesten, PLUS WIN a £50 Amazon Voucher!

Ladies, would you love to feel as knowledgeable, confident and empowered about your intimate health as you do in your favourite outfit?

I love pulling on a gorgeous Yours Clothing dress, grabbing my favourite clutch and heading out into the night, confident in myself.  However I haven't always been as confident about my female intimate health.  If this is you, then don't worry because there's always the chance to expand your knowledge, just like I have.

Read on as I have all the information you need plus a chance to WIN £50 in Amazon vouchers!

When I was growing up, the internet was only just getting started.  I was around in the days when ASOS was As Seen On Screen and you still had to actually leave the house to do your food shopping, purchase cinema tickets and check your bank account.

Now, the whole world is at our fingertips on a multitude of devices.  We should be well read in lots of important topics yet why is it that so many girls have the lyrics to the latest Little Mix song down to a T and know far more about the cast of Love Island than they do about their female intimate health?

For the most part, discussing down there is still seen as such a taboo subject.  There's this persistent stigma associated with talking about our "privates" for that reason... we're taught to keep them private.  This can create a huge obstacle in itself if we encounter a medical or sexual concern about our vagina that we really should talk to someone about.

When I was younger, I didn't feel as though I had anyone that I could speak to about my intimate health and I think a lot of people are in the same boat.  There are plenty of times that I've felt too embarrassed to talk about about things and, admittedly, it even led to me putting off my first smear test for longer than I should have and mistreating a condition that I thought I had.

I know I'm not alone in feeling like this as so many women are nervous about such matters and mistreatment is far more common than it should be but times are changing.

In recent years, I've found the gaps in my knowledge surrounding intimate health are beginning to close for a few reasons.  For a start, I do think that as I've grown up, I've started to care less about what others think about me and that's led me towards being more open about a lot of things in life because I fear judgement far less than I ever have done.

Plus with age comes life experience and as you get older and you experience just how precious life can be, you realise just how important sorting out our health concerns are as the potential consequences of not doing so are far more terrible than the short term embarrassment of just asking for help.

In addition, the internet has become the most fabulous resource to provide us with so much information about any topic, including female intimate health, from official resources such as pharmacies, the NHS and even Canesten themselves.

As well as this, there are now so many treatments for conditions like Thrush and Bacterial Vaginosis that are available over the counter.  Having a little bit of knowledge about the two conditions can help to save you time from having to go to the doctors if your case isn't severe, money from buying the wrong products until you find the right one and, most importantly, save your health by treating the condition in the right way early rather than mistreating it and having the condition become far worse.

All it takes is knowing the difference between the two and what symptoms to look out for in order to choose the right course of treatment.  This is only something that I've become particularly clued up on in the last year or so after the Canesten TV adverts prompted me to find out more.

Having that little bit of knowledge can make a wealth of difference to your health and all of the points above together have helped me to become far more confident in talking about female intimate health, choosing the right course of treatment and asking for help if needed.

How much do you really know about female intimate health?

How confidently can you talk about it?

Canesten want women just like you to better understand their intimate health and specifically the differences between Thrush and Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) so that if it is ever needed, they're able to choose the right over the counter treatment for their concern.  This is important because opting for the wrong medication can have detrimental consequences as we really don't want that, do we girls?
There's no shame in admitting that you know very little about intimate health, hey, I'm holding my own hands up here but what is wrong is not finding out more about it when there are so many resources at our fingertips.  As women, its so important that we're able to approach our intimate health openly and confidently and we need to feel empowered to make the right choices for our own bodies.

To help you to do that, Canesten have created the Myth Buster Quiz.  Its quick and easy to take and at the end it'll tell you how many you got correct (for me that was 4 out of 6) and it'll let you know more information about the correct answers.

Fancy winning yourself £50 in Amazon vouchers?

Simply take the Canesten Myth Buster quiz.
COMMENT with your score below AND what you have learnt about your knowledge of intimate health!

The one winner will be chosen at random on Thursday 21st September 2017. Entries must be from the UK ONLY.

*This post was created in partnership with Canesten, all words and opinions are my own.

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Giddy For Gingham With Yours Clothing

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

How many times have you struggled through the day wearing an outfit that looked cute but didn't sit correctly, that had fabric that itched you or a cut that irritated you?

I've been there, done that and chucked the t-shirt out.

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

What I love about Yours Clothing, is that I never have to compromise style for comfort.

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

Take this Gingham Frilled Cami Top for example.  Its stretchy so it hugs my curves perfectly and is so comfortable to wear, the cut is flattering so I feel confident and the elastic across the frill ensures that it stays put off my shoulders so that I'm not pulling it down every five minutes.  PLUS it looks absolutely gorgeous.

A total win, win right girls?

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

When paired with the Black Pull On Stretch Cropped Trousers, they're a match made in heaven!

These 3/4s are a smooth design so they don't add any extra bulk to your outfit, they're super stretchy making sure they sit comfortably and move with my body and while they're lightweight, they're totally opaque so I can wear them with a long or short top without worrying that others can see tomorrows washing.

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

I've completed the look with some tropical print platform sandals from River Island which were the perfect design to wear at The Alnwick Garden, my favourite landscaped gardens in the UK.  It's a great place to wander around throughout the year as there's always so much to see and do.

They also have plenty of other events available to attend like their 'Come Die With Me' murder mystery dinner that I'm really excited about.  Did you love the TV crime drama Vera?  Well this event was written exclusively by author Ann Cleeves, who penned the novels about Vera, and Lorna Dawson for The Alnwick Garden.  Tickets are available online and as well as the evenings entertainment and a 2 course meal, you'll also receive a signed copy of Ann Cleeves new book, The Seagull.

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

If you're looking for gorgeous shoes then I'd definitely recommend checking out the selection at River Island.

They always have beautifully stylish designs that interpret the latest trends really well.

I love the jewelled detail on the heels of these; the print is already gorgeous but that sparkle gives me serious heart eyed emoji face every time I wear them.

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

A pop of colour like these shoes is great to add to an otherwise monochrome outfit.

This top and pair of cropped trousers are great pieces to have in my wardrobe because individually they can be paired with so many different pieces from jeans and linen trousers to a whole range of tops.

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

Yours Clothing UK Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves at The Alnwick Garden

For TODAY ONLY you can actually shop lots of my favourite pieces from Yours Clothing over on their Instagram page, some of which would look lush with these trousers!

I'm taking over their Insta story with some of my top picks that are in store RIGHT NOW, so head on over their and check them out if you're looking for a gorgeous outfit.

What do you think about this outfit?  How would you style these pieces?

Friday, 1 September 2017

A Summer Day Out At The Alnwick Garden In My Favourite Plus Size Summer Dress

A Summer Day Out At The Alnwick Garden In My Favourite Plus Size Summer Dress

Every girl needs to have a summer dress in her wardrobe that she can pull on an instantly feel fabulous in.

For me, its been the Coral Cold Shoulder Swing Dress With Frill Hem from Yours Clothing this summer.  I've worn it countless times on holiday in Bali and Crete where it served as a light weight, ready in an instant outfit but also plenty of times back home in the UK, like at The Alnwick Garden for example.  A day out here when the sun is shining is one of my favourite ways to spend my time; taking a bite to eat in the Pavilion Cafe or the Treehouse restaurant and whiling away the afternoon taking a stroll in The Garden.

A Summer Day Out At The Alnwick Garden In My Favourite Plus Size Summer Dress

A Summer Day Out At The Alnwick Garden In My Favourite Plus Size Summer Dress

The Coral Cold Shoulder Swing Dress has just gone into the sale and it is definitely not one to be missed.  Even if we don't have a heatwave or Indian summer this year, coral is a staple summer colour that is on trend year after year so whether you have a late summer wedding coming up, you're jetting off for some winter sun or simply thinking ahead to your spring/summer 2018 wardrobe, this piece will surely stand you in good stead.

I love how lightweight this dress is which is great for hot summer days and also means that it takes up very minimal space in my suitcase when I travel.

The cold shoulder cut outs combined with the frill hem are pretty, girly and flirty which is exactly my style when it comes to summer dresses.  The cut and shape of the dress is really feminine and it hangs beautifully.  There's a fabric tie around the waist and adjustable shoulder straps so it can be modified to suit your shape.

A Summer Day Out At The Alnwick Garden In My Favourite Plus Size Summer Dress

A Summer Day Out At The Alnwick Garden In My Favourite Plus Size Summer Dress

If coral isn't a colour you love, why not try the black version instead?  I have this one too and in all honesty, I've had just as much use out of it.  Simply pull on with a clutch, some strappy heels and a pashmina draped over your shoulders if its chilly out and you're good to go.

As with many of the items on Yours Clothing, I find this piece to be very true to size too.  On my 5ft 5" frame, it falls to below the knee so even if you're far taller than I am, I definitely think this dress would still work for you.

A Summer Day Out At The Alnwick Garden In My Favourite Plus Size Summer Dress

A Summer Day Out At The Alnwick Garden In My Favourite Plus Size Summer Dress

Don't miss out on this beauty now that its in the sale. You'll regret it if you don't snap it up beauties!

*Many thanks to Tasha for taking these photographs for me!
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