Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Checking Into Spring With Yours Clothing

The spring collection has started to arrive at Yours Clothing and it has really got me feeling excited to update my wardrobe.  There's lots of light pink, grey and navy within the new colour palette which suits me down to the ground.

This collection is encouraging me to step away from the plain styles that I've been wearing a lot of in the last year and towards more patterns and details that I haven't worn a lot of before.

The Grey and Pink Checked Longline Swing Top With Cut Out Details is a great example of this.  Checks aren't something that I'm drawn to but the pink within this pattern really caught my eye.  A pink hue like this adds a girly touch that is perfect for heading into this transitional fashion period where I'm craving lighter colours but still pulling the darks out from my wardrobe thanks to the chill in the air.

I love how the model on the website has this piece styled with a pair of black ripped jeans, white trainers and a faux leather jacket but on my 5ft 5" frame, I prefer to wear it as a dress with my black cotton leggings and paired with some patent leather ankle boots that I bought from Office for my graduation a few years ago.

If you want a similar look, there's plenty in the Yours Clothing Footwear section to keep your toes warm and your outfit looking stylish.

When I first saw this top in the Sunderland store, I wasn't too sure what to make of it; I liked it but I didn't love it until I tried it on.  The swing shape is flattering as it skims over my body and the longline is great because it covers the bottom which means that you can wear it with leggings but it also covers my tummy.

I'm really long in the body and have a lower hanging tummy that I've often heard called a mothers apron.  It can mean that some tops hit me bang in the middle of it and come up too short.  Whereas everything about the shape of this swing top, or dress as I'm wearing it, is perfect and I don't just mean the longline length.

From the long sleeves that end just shy of the wrist, which I find to look  really feminine especially when I'm wearing my pretty pink Thomas Sabo bracelet, to the cut out detail across the chest that shows a hint of subtly sexy cleavage, this top has all the shape features that I love!

When it gets to this time of the year, I end up sick of wearing winter clothes and become really impatient for the lighter, warmer days ahead.  It's still a little bitter up here in the North East so for now, I'll stick to wearing this swing top with my Black Faux Fur Sleeveless Cable Knit Giletalthough I hope I'll be able to ditch the extra layer soon enough!

Another great thing about this top is that its almost a knitted jersey fabric so its a little thicker and therefore warmer than your average t shirt or swing dress.  It'll be great for those early spring days where its too mild to wrap up but not warm enough to go bare on the arms.

Plus, I've always got my gilet to wear over the top.  It has to be one of my most worn pieces this past winter.  Its a really great layering piece and instantly adds warmth and style to a plain outfit, especially when accompanied by the Mulberry Lily bag that I'm carrying in this post.

I love wearing this gilet with jeans and a jumper during the day, or at night if I'm heading to the local pub for a couple of drinks.  Black is always a classic but this piece plays with different textures and faux fur, faux suede and cable knit are a gorgeous combo.


Checked Swing Top // Leggings // Faux Fur Gilet // Thomas Sabo Bracelet // Mulberry Lily Bag

How would you style this top?  What trends are you most looking forward to trying out this spring?

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

Spreading Love Not Hate In A Plus Size Tropical Bikini

Simply Be Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves Bikini

IMAGINE THIS: For every hateful comment online, two positive ones took their place...

How much love would we feel then?

How welcome, confident and happy would we all be in our own skin?

Simply Be Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves Bikini

For the majority of my life, I have been taught to hate my body, told that it is disgusting and I've been made to feel as though I'm not worthy.

It took a long time for me to have the confidence to believe in myself, to ignore the negative opinions of others and to love my body.  Now I don't worry what anyone else thinks about how I look, bad or good, because the important thing is that when I look in the mirror, I love me.


If someone chooses to pay me a compliment or say something kind, it does give me a little happiness boost and makes me smile even more but my own happiness doesn't depend on it.  If they choose to try to be nasty or hurt me, the book stops with them.  I love me and my body and I won't let anyone stop me from living my best life.

Since becoming part of the #TakeThePledge campaign, the positive support on and offline has been truly amazing.  So much so that the odd attempts at being nasty have been so greatly overshadowed that any hateful commentators really come across as ridiculous.

Imagine taking the time out of your day to try to drag someone down who is clearly happy and using their positivity to inspire others to be happy too?  It really shows far more about the person trolling and how unhappy they are with an aspect of their life than it could ever do about the person they're hating on.

Simply Be Plus Size Blogger WhatLauraLoves Bikini

Thankfully, nasty comments have been few and far between; the positive support and encouragement has been unreal; THANK YOU.  I have felt happily overwhelmed on so many occasions; I've especially loved reading messages from women who have felt inspired to love themselves in their own skin and even try out a bikini for their next holiday- you go girls!

The one that I'm wearing in this post is from Simply Be who make some of my favourite plus size swimwear.  I've been wearing their swimming costumes and tankinis for all of my adult life and when I wore a bikini for the first time last year, they were the first website I turned to.

This month, I travelled to Costa Rica to stay at the fabulous Riu Guanacaste Hotel and I picked out the Beach to Beach Bikini Top and the Beach to Beach Bikini Shorts in the tropical print to wear around the pool.

The print is stunning; so vibrant and colourful and in true Simply Be style, they've given their beach beauties a choice of different styles in the same fabric.  Whether you want to go glam in a bikini or swimsuit or be a total fashionista in a tankini, blouson or skort, there's a style for you to feel confident in around the pool as well as some coordinating beachwear to pop on over the top for when you're going for drinks at the pool bar.

I really feel as though the cut of the bikini top especially really makes the most of my figure.  When I pick out clothes, especially bikinis, I look for the ones that I feel as though I look my best in and it gives me so much more added confidence and a spring in my step when I wear them.  Its perfectly ok to love and be confident in your body while still wanting to wear clothes that you feel are flattering or best suited to you, in just the same way as its cool to say to hell with flattering too.  The point is that we all have a choice and the choice is entirely our own; quite empowering don't you think?

I feel so excited for the future; it seems as though times are changing and I hope that eventually we get to a point where girls and boys don't grow up hating their bodies and feeling less worthy like I have done in the past.

When it comes down to it, the only opinion that matters about your own body and what you wear is your own.

The only way to silence hate is with love and that all starts with YOU!


How do you feel about haters online?  What do you love to wear around the pool?  How confident do you feel in your body?

Friday, 26 January 2018

How To Create A Luxe Bedroom You Love To Relax, Sleep & Wake Up In!

White, grey, pink and rose gold bedroom theme

When I moved into my apartment last summer, it was really important to me to  make my flat feel like a home as quickly as possible.  I'm an anxious person who can easily become overwhelmed when theres mountains of boxes around and a to-do list a mile long so I knew that I had to get unpacked and organised quickly so that it didn't get on top of me and never end up getting done!

Since I was on a tight budget, I knew that it would be unrealistic to think that I'd be able to get the whole place completely finished straight away but I gave myself two weeks to get all of the upstairs, hallway and bathrooms painted, unpack all of the boxes and have my bedroom, or more specifically my bed, finished to a comfortable standard.  I'd not been getting a lot of sleep at the time so creating a really comfortable, peaceful sanctuary that I could go to to switch off from the world was high on my list of priorities.

Perhaps one day I'll share a full room tour but for now, I'll show you the five main things that I did when I first moved in and decorated my bedroom to create a relaxing place to sleep and wake up!

White, grey, pink and rose gold bedroom theme

1. Painting and Windows

A light, airy, open space is really important to me as I find it motivating and calming in equal measure.  I was really spoilt in the last place that I lived in as my bedroom window was south facing and almost the size of the whole wall and the windows in my office were from Velux Roof Window Shop.  They were our first and only choice when it came to converting the loft because, aside from being the best quality, Velux had so many different options to choose from to enable us to create the light, bright living space that we wanted, with great noise reduction from the road when the windows were closed.

While I cannot change the windows in the place that I'm renting, I wanted to mimic the light, bright feel that my previous home had.  I did this by painting all of the walls a bright white with silk paint.  The room is fairly large anyway but the white walls open up the space even more and keep it looking really fresh and clean.  I wanted a calm space to go to sleep in and the white walls definitely help with that.

To save on costs, I kept the roller blinds up at the windows and chose not to add a curtain pole and curtains.  I prefer a blind anyway and although the ones I have might not be the colour I'd like, they serve their purpose and I keep them open the vast majority of the time anyway as I find looking out at the view to be really relaxing.

White, grey, pink and rose gold bedroom theme

2. Bed & Bedding

Once the painting was complete, I moved onto creating the most comfortable bed I could.  While I completed the rest of the apartment on a tight budget, the one thing I didn't scrimp on was my bed and bedding; if you're going to be spending a lot of time in something, then I think that you should allocate a larger chunk of your budget to that.

When I moved, I didn't take my bed with me as I'd had it for almost 11 years and it was in need of taking its final voyage to the tip.  The flat that I moved into came furnished and there was two single beds in the master bedroom.  I didn't have any need for a single bed but two singles pushed together creates a superking, albeit a few inches shorter.

After consulting with the experts at Linthorpe Beds, I was able to order a superking size mattress topper that would sit over the top of the two single beds, joining them together to create a superking.  I chose a memory foam one from Kayflex who make premium roll up mattress toppers and once it had settled out of the vacuum pack, I just cut the extra few inches off from the bottom of the bed.  I can now starfish in luxurious comfort until my heart is content and I cannot feel the join between the two single beds at all!

While the colour scheme in my room is mostly white from the walls to the furniture that I brought with me from my old bedroom, I wanted to bring different shades of grey with light pink and accents of rose gold to the room as well.  I did this firstly with the upholstered headboard that I picked out, again from Linthorpe Beds.  I love how luxe the dark grey looks with the deep buttoned, fabric headboard.

I continued the grey and white theme with my bedding.  Buying for a superking size bed will always mean added cost but if you shop around like I did then you'll often be able to find a great deal.  I got all of my bedding from House Of Fraser when they had a sale on, although it still wasn't cheap but high quality bedding never is.

I invested in two sets of bedding so that I could have one on the bed and one in the wash.  I've had the luxury of a tumble dryer my whole life so having a next to useless washer dryer takes some getting used to and I'm trying to see the clothes horse as a work of art rather than as an eyesore getting in the way!

After deliberating for what felt like hours in store, I finally settled on the Luxury Hotel Collection 1000 Tc Supima Cotton Bedlinen Range because it felt so soft, luxurious and had a lustrous finish.  I picked out two fitted bottom sheets in the slate grey and two sets of the Oxford pillowcase pairs.  I always have two pillows on either side of my bed and I wanted the darkest set to be at the back as the ones that I'd actually sleep on so that if I had any excess makeup or products on my face or hair then they'd not show up as easily as the lighter bedding set that I had on top.

To create contrast, I kept with the same bedding range but opted for the white in the superking duvet cover and housewife pillowcases.  For the second set of bedding, I chose a light grey in the Sheridan Columbus Quilt Duvet Cover Set which came with two pillow cases included.  While this 400 thread count set is still really high quality, it is noticeably different to the 1000 thread count which feels far heavier and thicker as well as softer and more luxurious.

That level of comfort comes at a price though; it is an absolute NIGHTMARE to iron, creases in an instant and makes you feel much more warm in bed on a hot summers night than you'd perhaps like but it is mega comfortable and keeps you warm in the winter.  Hey, its all swings and roundabouts but all in all, I've created a bed that is the height of comfort and I can honestly say, I've never slept better.

3.  Soft Furnishings

Decorating my bed to bring together my colour scheme and to make it look and feel comfortable and luxe was next on my agenda.  This was where I was able to spend and save my money; I bought two of the Sheridan Haden Cushions on sale in House of Fraser (one was at the dry cleaners when I took these snaps!) and the matching throw.  They're knitted in a gorgeous light pink, chunky cotton yarn; the tag denotes the colour as 'peach' but don't be fooled, these are definitely a light pink!

Then I added two grey and rose gold geometric cushions, two pink fluffy faux fur cushions and a small pink and rose gold square cushion from Primark which were all really inexpensive but have a luxe look and feel to them.

I never used to enjoy making my bed but now I do and it feels so welcoming when I come home.

Monsoon Amber and Frankincense Candle and Reed Diffuser Home Fragrance Review

4. Lighting

As you've probably guessed by now, I'm really into mixing high end with high street and getting a luxury look for less.  I love the whole hotel room chic look and wanted to create that in my bedroom with matching bedside tables and lamps.

These bedside tables are from Ikea a few years ago when I bought them for my old bedroom and I'm in the process of upgrading their look with crystal drawer knobs.  I only had two left out of the pack that I bought and I'm waiting for the new pack to arrive from eBay so I'm a bit mismatched for now.

What really pulls the hotel vibes together though are the matching table lamps that I picked up from The Range.

The Elegance Crystal Table Lamps certainly look as the name would suggest, elegant and far more than their price tag.  They have a gorgeous pale grey fabric shade, a luxe crystal base and look even more beautiful when they're switched on.  All of my friends who have seen my bedroom so far have complimented me on how gorgeous they look and they can't believe they were from The Range!

They provide just the right amount of light and I love having them on when I'm winding down for the evening, relaxing before bed and reading.

I sat each of them on a mirrored plate that I picked up for only a couple of pounds in a craft wholesalers.  Mirrored pieces are a great way to give a luxe look to your room while helping to open up the space by reflecting light.

Monsoon Amber and Frankincense Candle and Reed Diffuser Home Fragrance Review

5. Home Fragrance

The final part of my bedroom that I made a priority to focus on when I moved in was the fragrance.

I had been collecting home fragrances from candles and wax melts to diffusers and room sprays for so long before I moved out as I'd always dreamed of having a home that always smelt gorgeous and luxurious.

Home fragrances really add a beautiful, clean and luxe touch to your home and makes it feel inviting and memorable.  There's a reed diffuser and candle on the go in every room of my home and in my bedroom at the moment, I have the Amber and Frankincense scent by Monsoon.

Both the reed diffuser and the candle are housed in stunning glass containers with metallic gold lids and emblems on the front that depict an iconic Monsoon metalwork pattern.  They're weighty, luxurious and serve as a decoration themselves and as such, are always out on display around my room.  I tend to save burning the candle for nights when I'm having a pamper or reading in bed before going to sleep.  It burns evenly and cleanly so it still looks pretty in the jar as it burns down.

Monsoon Amber and Frankincense Candle and Reed Diffuser Home Fragrance Review

The reed diffuser and candle are both in the Amber and Frankincense fragrance which smells incredibly warm and opulent.  This rich, woody scent opens with guaiacwood, patchouli and cedar blending into a heart of amber and the spicy frankincense base.  The scent is noticeable when walking into a room without being overpowering or too heady; perfect for any bedroom or sitting room I'd say.

This duo is part of the first ever home fragrance collection from Monsoon which comes beautifully presented in gift boxes that are almost too pretty to throw away!  You can find them in store and online at as well as from Argos, The Fragrance Shop and Debenhams.

From scent to light and fabric to style, these were the key aspects of my room that I focused on when I first moved in and they definitely helped me to feel more at home and get a peaceful nights sleep.

How would you create a bedroom that you'd love to relax, sleep and wake up in?

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Jimmy Choo L'Eau Fragrance Review

Jimmy Choo L'Eau Fragrance Review WhatLauraLoves

Luxury design house Jimmy Choo have been long loved for their incredible shoes and handbags.  While owning a piece is still a distant dream for many, myself included, a bottle of their stunning fragrance is certainly more attainable.

I remember when the original Jimmy Choo fragrance was launched; people went mad for it and to date it is still one of the biggest ever perfume launches.  Now they have branched out into creating a scent for men as well as a number of other ladies fragrances.

Jimmy Choo L'Eau is one of their latest fragrances, having been released at the start of 2017.

The dynamic, alluring and adventurous Jimmy Choo woman is the inspiration behind this new fragrance.  With top notes of bergamot and hibiscus flower, a nectarine and peony middle and a cedar wood and musk base, it is certainly a scent that'll be loved by those with a penchant for fresh, floral fragrances.

It is a scent of contrasts between delicate yet powerful, sensual but sweet and elegant yet audacious, strong and feminine.

For me, this is a perfume that I'd wear during the day as it isn't strong enough for my tastes come the evening and doesn't last as long on my skin as I'd like.  I love the sweeter opening but the dry down just isn't sexy enough to encourage me to wear it for an evening out.  The scent is beautiful and definitely one that I'd recommend for anyone out there that loves floral scents.  Its very inoffensive so I think the majority of women will find something that they enjoy about this fragrance making it a great gift idea.

Fans of Jimmy Choo may notice that the bottle shape of L'Eau is slightly elongated compared to other releases from the brand.  It was inspired by Venetian Murano glass and comes in the most beautifully feminine light pink.  Whenever I think of Jimmy Choo, I always think of elegance and femininity at that perfectly describes the L'Eau bottle and scent.

Love the sound of it?  Jimmy Choo L'Eau is available in 40ml, 60ml and 90ml sized bottles, nationwide.


What is your favourite Jimmy Choo fragrance?  How does L'Eau sound to you?

Monday, 22 January 2018

The Yours Clothing Voice Award Winner

This year, plus size fashion favourite Yours Clothing have launched The Yours Awards which aim to provide recognition for advocates of the plus size industry.  They're the people who Yours feel have gone the extra mile, working incredibly hard and made a notable difference in the industry the last year.

Many amazing people and events have been chosen from ITV This Morning' Alison Hammond to Slink Magazine, The Curve Fashion Festival and, I'm proud to say, yours truly.

I am so happy to let you all know that I have won The Yours Clothing Voice Award.

When I opened my inbox to find an email from Yours Clothing to let me know that I had won, I was beyond excited and so proud.  It is amazing to receive such fabulous recognition for something that I work so passionately and hard at.  I've been blogging for 7 years now and not a day goes by where I'm not working on new ideas, content or interacting with others online.

I love that my hobby became my job but to keep it that way, a lot of dedication and determination is needed so to have been recognised by one of my favourite brands is a complete honour.

When I got back from Costa Rica, a package was waiting for me and inside was a gorgeous glass award (isn't it beautiful?) along with the message:

"For the first year ever Yours Clothing have launched The Yours Awards.

Our goal of The Yours Awards 2017 is to provide recognition for plus-size industry advocates. Individuals who have gone the extra mile, worked super hard and who have notably made a difference over the past year. We have so much admiration for you and what you do for the industry, it definitely doesn’t go unnoticed.

With this said, we are very proud to announce that you, Laura Ferry, are the winner of The Yours Clothing Voice Award.

You always go above and beyond for our brand, creating excellent content through video and still imagery. We have watched you grow over the years and you have supported Yours Clothing every step of the way. You are a beautiful woman inside and out, which is why we have awarded you The Yours Clothing Voice Award in The 2017 Yours Awards."

To say that I'm over the moon to have been given this award would be a complete understatement, especially as Yours Clothing are where my love of fashion really started.  You can read all about that in this post.

What a great way to start 2018, I've never been so excited for the year ahead career wise as I have with this one.  There's lots in the pipeline that I'm working on to help to inspire more women to love their body and to be the best version of themselves for themselves.

Winning this award will already go down as a highlight of my year.  All I need to do now is to decide where to keep it... shall I have it pride of place in my living room, go all girl boss with it on a shelf in my office or shall I be a total rockstar and keep it in the bathroom?  I've heard that's where Adele keeps all of her awards to remind her of her hard work every time she goes in; well if its good enough for her...!

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Yours Clothing Sale Buy That's Perfect For Spring

I don't know about you but I for one always feel especially lucky when I'm able to pick something up in the sale that's actually PERFECT for the season ahead.

Such was the case when I spied the Limited Collection Navy & Multi Floral Print Bardot Choker Top on the Yours Clothing website.

Now I know its snowing outside as I type this but hear me out; isn't this top just fabulous for Spring?  If you head on over to the Yours Clothing website or any other retailer for that matter, you'll see their new in sections filled with florals and navy and pink colour palettes, of which this top compliments beautifully well.

I love the choker detail which is sill very in for the coming season and it isn't attached to the top so if you'd prefer not to wear it or switch it out for a necklace instead, you certainly can.  The sizing of this piece is great too as its very generous in the body (I could size down a couple of sizes) but the elastic is nice and secure across the shoulders to keep it in place when you're wearing it.

I've paired it with my Black Pull On Stretch JENNY Jeggings, which lets face it, rarely leave my behind unless I'm wearing the indigo blue ones and some sandals (available in black here) and a bag that I picked up from Yours Clothing last summer to channel all of those spring outfit vibes for you.

If you're looking for footwear and accessories now though, perhaps for a winter sun holiday, their sandals and bags sections have plenty to choose from.

At 20% off, making it only £15.99, my purse is singing all the Hallelujahs under the sun.

Its still in stock in plenty of sizes so don't miss out!


Are you looking forward to the warmer weather? What spring clothes have you updated your wardrobe with?

Saturday, 20 January 2018

Montblanc Lady Emblem Elixir Review

Montblanc Lady Emblem Elixir Review

Valentines Day is fast approaching and if you're going to be giving the gift of fragrance this year then I simply must recommend the Montblanc Lady Emblem Elixir perfume.

Perhaps you're buying for someone who is already a fan of the Emblem fragrance collection or maybe the woman in your life loves floral fragrances and you'd like to treat her to a luxe addition to her collection or maybe you're saying tatty bye to Valentines altogether and treating yo'self; this perfume is perfect!

Montblanc Lady Emblem Elixir Review

Montblanc are a brand that are synonymous with class, sophistication and luxury; I always remember my dad having a Montblanc pen and more recently, the aftershave.  They're a timeless classic loved worldwide by both men and women who enjoy the finer things in life from writing implements to leather goods and fragrance.

In creating this fragrance, Montblanc have taken the original Lady Emblem and evolved it into a more daring and potent scent; Lady Emblem Elixir.

With top notes of mandarine, lychee and black peppercorn, a heart of iris, bitter citrus blossom and damask rose and a warming base of vanilla, patchouli and sandalwood, this perfume combines sweet, floral and warm, woody notes impeccably well to create a fragrance thats very individual but certainly likeable.  I think that this is a scent that a lot of women will enjoy wearing, especially for evenings out.

It is strong when first sprayed, without being overpowering and only a little is needed to appreciate the full fragrance for hours.

Montblanc Lady Emblem Elixir Review

If you're familiar with the original, then you'll find Montblanc Lady Emblem Elixir to be a bold interpretation of the original that takes the aroma of damask roses in a new direction.  It isn't overpoweringly sweet, floral or woody; it is a beautiful blend between the three and very much a scent of layers.

That bold, punchy reinterpretation can also be seen as well as smelled with the packaging.  Lady Emblem Elixir still has the diamond inspired bottle design but this time the colour is a stronger, rose gold that would look incredible on a dressing table.

When I decorated my bedroom, I opted for white, grey and pink with rose gold metallic accents and lets just say, this bottle serves as a decorative piece as well as a scent I wear so often; I can't see me parting with the bottle when its finished!

Even the outer packaging is a stunning, bold rose gold with the classic Montblanc branding that is recognisable the world over.

Montblanc Lady Emblem Elixir Review

For those who love floral, fruity and woody scents, Montblanc Lady Emblem Elixir is a must!

Shop the 50ml EDP bottle from DebenhamsThe Perfume Shop and The Fragrance Shop

Friday, 19 January 2018

How To Get A Luxe Look On A Budget

Mixing and matching high end and high street items really is the key to how I achieve my style.  I love to add new pieces to my wardrobe but I don't have the budget to invest greatly in trends that will go out of style in a season or two.  Money is often relative so perhaps if I had a higher budget then I would but right now, if I'm going to splash my cash, its going to be on a high quality, timeless piece that I can wear for years to come rather than a slogan T I'll get sick of in a couple of months.

That's why fast fashion shops online and brands on the highstreet are great because their styles are filtered through from the catwalk but they're much more affordable and wearable for the average person.

One of my favourite places to shop online and on the highstreet is Yours Clothing.  Thats where I got the dress I'm wearing here from and while I've loved wearing it over the party season, I think I'll get plenty of use out of it in the coming months too, especially with Valentines coming up and the amount of friends birthdays I'm going out to celebrate!

The cold shoulder wrap dress is a real sparkler with little dots of holographic glitter all over it and the cold shoulder is bang on trend.  Its the cut of this dress that I love the most though; the wrap style flatters my figure and is subtly sexy across the bust without giving too much away and the short sleeves are great if you're not so confident about getting your arms out.

While I'm a huge believer in being body positive and loving yourself completely, I know that many women contact me saying that they hate getting their arms out and would rather have them covered up, the stance I take is this; if adding an extra layer or wearing a particular style enables you to feel more confident about your body then go for it.  You only get one life and its for living, so wear the clothes that you want to wear, free from worry about what other people might think; the only opinion about your body that matters is your own so if you feel better wearing sleeves then that's entirely up to you.

The upper arms, triceps, or bingo wings (man I detest that phrase, it sounds so body shaming), are an area prone to a sagging that a lot of women don't like on display.  There's absolutely nothing wrong with having sagging skin or anything like that- just think about all the great things your arms have enabled you to do in your life- but if you are someone who would feel more confident in themselves with this area hidden a little more then this dress is a great option.

The short sleeves conceal the inner part of the arm that tends to show the most sagging while the cold shoulder has the often smoother part of the arm on display.  For some, this might feel like having the best of both worlds and it could be a cooler option too than a dress thats not as strappy at the top if you're going out to somewhere like a hot night club or as the warmer weather draws closer.

This dress is part of the Limited Collection at Yours Clothing which I like to think of as the more rebellious, sassy and trend led little sister of Yours Clothing.  They're affordable, just like the main brand are and their clothes are a really quick and stylish way to update your wardrobe.

I like to pair my affordable plus size clothing with both high end and budget accessories but whatever I choose, I like it to have a luxe look about it.

My investment piece with this outfit is undoubtedly my diamond and white gold tennis bracelet which I've had since my teens; its a classic style that'll never go out of fashion, probably increase in value and will certainly be a piece that I can pass onto future generations.

Another high end purchase is my Tiffany necklace with the dangling key that I received as a Christmas gift many years ago.  Tiffany are one of those special, treat yo'self or someone you love brands that don't date and the same goes for the Pandora rings that I'm wearing too, albeit for a lower price point.  I like to stack the rose Hearts of Pandora ring with the Vintage Allure on one hand, while I wear the Pandora Rose Timeless Elegance Ring on the other.

These pieces are sparkly, classic in design and such great quality that they can be enjoyed for years and years.  They're great for combining with less expensive pieces as they give them an instant upgrade, making the whole outfit look more luxe.

Another way that I like to get a luxe look is with designer inspired shoes.  For some women, shoes are their thing.  However for me, they're just not.

I don't always scrimp on my shoes, especially when it comes to one's that'll get a lot of wear such as work shoes or trainers for my work outs; head to this post to find a great example of where I've invested more than I usually would in footwear and why.

However for styles that are really trendy right now or that wont get a lot of wear such as stiletto heels, I like to find designer inspired pieces on the highstreet for as few of my hard earned pounds as possible.

The Jimmy Choo Romy Glittered Pumps are absolutely stunning but realistically speaking, how many times am I going to wear pink and silver full glitter heels in order to be able to justify the hefty price tag?  Not a lot, let me tell you!

These Jimmy Choo dupes from Primark are a fabulous alternative at less than £20 and I love the added touch of the pink ombre heel.  They give a similar effect to the Choo's, for a far smaller price tag and one that I can justify on my income for the amount that I'll wear them.

Primark are well known for their gorgeous designer inspired shoes.  Last year, they released lots of heels that appeared to be inspired by Valentino.  I've been coveting a pair of Rockstud's for so long but the ones that I'm wearing in this post gave me the fix that I needed without giving me shoppers guilt, forcing me to dip into my savings or live on toast and beans for a month!

Where to invest and where to save on your fashion spending really comes down to your own style, budget and lifestyle.  I personally like to buy great quality but affordable clothes, invest in my bags and classic jewellery and save on my shoes that are ultimately going on the floor!

Combining designer with inspired pieces, along with styling them to compliment one another particularly colour wise, really helps you to be able to create a luxe look overall.

Give it a go, build your collection slowly and it'll make putting together outfits far quicker and easier!


Where do you like to save and invest when it comes to clothing and accessories?

Monday, 8 January 2018

Issey Miyake L'Eau d'Issey Pure EDT Review

Issey Miyake L'Eau d'Issey Pure Eau de Toilette Review

A year ago to the day, I reviewed the Issey Miyake L'Eau D'Issey Pure EDP (check out the review here).  It's given my perfume collection a hit of freshness for the last year but now I'm moving on... to the EDT.

You could be forgiven for thinking that the Issey Miyake L'Eau D'Issey Pure EDT is exactly the same as the EDP, only lighter and less long lasting.  I myself assumed that until I smelled it and compared them side by side.

They are similar in that they're both floral, aquatic fragrances with similar rose and lily heart notes but that's where the similarities end for me as I could spot plenty of differences between the two; particularly the zesty, citrus top notes that the EDT has.

Issey Miyake L'Eau D'Issey Pure Eau de Toilette opens with notes of mandarin and neroli, blending into a heart of rose and lily of the valley petals with a base of musk and ambergris.  It combines citrus, floral and fresh really well and has a light powdery scent to it, presumably from the musk and ambergris base.

For an EDT, particularly one with a fresh scent, I was surprised at how long this scent lasted on my skin.  It is definitely a daytime fragrance for me and ones that's ideal for going out to work as its very clean smelling; too sparkling citrus for the evenings as my favourite scents are quite heady and sensual rather than zesty and fresh.

Issey Miyake have kept the #SuspendedMoment bottle, inspired by the water droplet but have given it a frosted white coating which I really like.  It is one of those inoffensive looking bottles thats modern and stylish, quite like the fragrance.

L'Eau d'Issey Pure EDT will make the ideal scent for the spring and summertime thanks to its fresh, citrus air.  I can imagine it being ideal for those who love to buy a new scent to wear on hot holidays so that they can reminisce on happy times whenever they smell it; perfume is so powerful at evoking memories and this one definitely channels those warm weather vibes.

You'll find this scent in 30ml, 50ml and 90ml bottles from John Lewis, House of FraserFeel Unique.


Which Issey Miyake fragrances have you tried?  What is your favourite scent to wear right now?

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

Updating My Signature Scent with John Lewis

One of my few vices in life has to be perfume.  Not only do I love to smell great but I love to feel great too and putting on a gorgeous smelling perfume certainly gives me that inner boost.

If I've said it once, I've said it a thousand times that scent is a really powerful thought provoker for me, as it is with a lot of people.  I say powerful because I can smell a particular perfume and feel instantly transported back to notable times gone by that I've worn that particular perfume.  I've even been out and caught a particular scent be it from a perfume, air freshener, clothing, or just the scent of somewhere in general and been reminded of my nana who sadly passed away many years ago.  The effect is comforting, if a little surprising to begin with.

The easiest way for me to associate a particular smell with a particular time in my life is through perfume.  For example, a very old fragrance called Very Valentino reminds me of travelling to America to sing with my school when I was in my teens as that's the scent I bought at the airport on the way out there and wore throughout the whole trip and Amore Amore by Cacharel also reminds me of being in school when I was 14 to 16 and my friend Cherelle used to wear it.  I loved the perfume that much I asked for it for my birthday or Christmas and wore it everyday! Alien by Thierry Mugler is the scent that I wore throughout my college days and one that is still one of my all time favourites to this day.  I've often heard people say that you school days are the best of your life but I hated mine and would never go back however my college days from 16 to 18 were very much a part of my life that I look back on so fondly.  YSL Elle is another significant fragrance to me as it reminds me of my first date with my first love and Jo Malone's Blue Agava and Cacao layered with Pomegranate Noir will always remind me of a special time in my life.

These are all scents that I've worn time and time again at particular points in my life and their frequency of use and my love for them made them my signature scent at the time.

Generally speaking, I love oriental and musky fragrances; ones that are sexy, distinctive and strong.  I'm not usually a fan of scents that smell overpoweringly of rose and orange blossom or are too floral, fresh or citrus.  The deeper and more complex the scent, the better for me.

For the last couple of years, my signature scent has been Coco Mademoiselle by Chanel.  Surprisingly, while it is a very popular fragrance across the world, I personally don't know many people who wear it so it always stands out when I have it on.

I've forever loved the elegance, class and femininity that Coco Mademoiselle excudes; its a scent that is often complimented on by both other women and men.

What I love about Coco Mademoiselle is how long lasting the scent is and the range of complimentary products available with the same fragrance.  I'm a huge advocate of layering fragrance so this is always a big selling point for me.  I have the body cream, body oil and hair mist from the range, as well as the perfume, and they're all really highly scented which is great because if I ever run out of the perfume I can wear the body products alone and have a similar effect until I'm able to repurchase the fragrance.

The Chanel Coco Mademoiselle range smells luxurious and expensive and that luxury extends right through to the packaging which looks beautiful on my dresser.  Wearing it gives me a confidence boost; I feel as though I walk taller and glow from the inside out when I wear it which is why I always tend to select it for special occasions.

However with the start of the New Year approaching, the perfume experts at John Lewis asked if they could hand select a new fragrance for me to try and perhaps it could become my new signature scent.

I very much love my Chanel Coco Mademoiselle but given the expertise and vast array of perfumes for women at John Lewis, I had a sneaky suspicion that they'd be up to the challenge!

The fragrance that the perfume experts at John Lewis picked out for me is Prada La Femme; a match made in heaven.

Prada La Femme couldn't be more perfect for me.  It has this incredibly elegant air to it; beautifully feminine and oozing class from the fragrance to the bottle.   With top notes of frangipani, a heart of tuberose, ylang ylang, spice and beeswax and a base of vetiver and vanilla, this perfume is smooth, creamy, seductive and really unusual.  La Femme is unlike any other scent I've tried and I've never smelt it on any of my other friends either.

The fragrance is alluring, sultry and warming on the skin but most importantly, it is long lasting and smells incredible from the first spritz to the dry down and beyond.

With all fragrances, I tend to apply them on my inner wrists, down the sides of my neck, across my collarbone and just above my belly button which is how I currently apply Prada La Femme.

However if you're a regular reader of WhatLauraLoves then you may know that I'm a big fan of fragrance layering to make the scent last even longer and really become synonymous with me.  I even posted my guide to fragrance layering back in 2014 on my blog.

The key to layering up your scent is to use coordinating and complimentary products in the same scent as your perfume.  When wearing Chanel Coco Mademoiselle, I tend to just spritz it on my neck and inner wrists as I have the other products to layer with it; I apply the body oil on my legs, the cream on my arms and décolleté and the hair mist over my locks before a night out or special occasion.

What I love about Prada La Femme is that they too have plenty of coordinating products that I'm able to purchase to wear with the perfume and layer the fragrance.  There's currently a Shower Gel, a light weight Body Lotion and a thicker Body Cream to use afterwards.  While the scent itself is long lasting, I'll definitely be investing in the body cream to add a deeper layer of fragrance to my skin to make it last even longer... perfect for a busy Girl Boss like me!

A fragrance as distinctive as this has all the potential of a signature scent; I love it and would highly recommend you to check it out.

Prada La Femme is available in a 35ml, 50ml and 100ml bottle from John Lewis who also have a gift set of this fragrance thats available here.

You can check out the other John Lewis Signature Scents chosen by their perfume experts for other bloggers here.


What is your signature scent?  Have you tried Prada La Femme?

*Many thanks to John Lewis for collaborating with me on this post.
© What Laura Loves. All rights reserved.
Blogger Templates by pipdig