Category Archives: Primark

High street haul: H&M slouchy tee + Primark maroon maxi skirt

Maroon Primark maxi skirt, grey H&M t-shirt and vintage scarf

Autumn has a lot to answer. I’ve found myself taking comfort from the high street in the last couple of weeks, more than I have in the last could of months, and this outfit is an example of that. The grey t-shirt is from my recent trip to H&M and last week I also paid a visit to Primark.

All but two pairs of my shoes need to be reheeled or resoled (shoes with holes + rain do not mix), but I havn’t had a chance to go to the cobblers in St Nicks Market yet (incidentally, if anyone can recommend any other decent cobblers in the Bristol area then let me know!) These victorian tan lace up boots were an ideal interim replacement, but the skirt was something of an impulse purchase.

Me and maxi skirts don’t really get on. I’m too short and never wear heels, so maxi-anything just swamps me and poses nothing but a health risk, but this sheer maroon design caught my eye and I knew I had to try it on. I think it works due to the sheer overlay over the opaque mini skirt, and at £15 I figured it was worth a shot.

And I’m happy to report that, apart from nearly tripping up the steps on the bus (I forgot to pretend I was a medival princess and hold the skirt daintily above my ankles) the skirt is almost hazard-free! I’ve teamed it with a turquoise necklace I bought in Thailand, a scarf from Grandma Ship-Shape and the Holly Fulton tote I picked up at the McArthurGlen Designer Outlet Fashion Month back in September.

PS. Did anyone wake up early to catch up on the US election? Very excited to see Obama back in the White House : )

Grey H&M t-shirt and Holly Fulton Designer Fashion Outlet MonthGrey H&M t-shirt, maroon Primark maxi skirt and Holly Fulton Designer Outlet Fashion Month bagGrey H&M t-shirt and maroon Primark maxi skirtPrimark maroon maxi skirt and Holly Fulton Designer Outlet Fashion Month bagGrey H&M t-shirt


Filed under H and M, outfits, Primark, shopping

Arrivederci Italy

Monsoon top and denim shorts

This is the last outfit post from Italy, which saddens me as with it comes the return of hit and miss British weather! How lucky we’ve been over the past couple of weeks to see out the summer without any rain (or at least that’s been the case in the South West).

We were lucky enough to stay at our friend’s family house, which you can see below. It’s just a simple Italian home on the outskirts of a small town, but it is slowly being restored, rendered and tiled to bring it back to life. Further down this post you can see the incredible view from the back of the house, which looks over vineyards and lush green fields – surprising for such a hot, dry climate.

The outfit I’m wearing includes denim shorts from Primark, paired with a thick brown belt from H&M, and a beautiful embroidered blouse from Monsoon. I spotted it in the sale last year and I loved the scalloped edges and tiny string of bells at the end of each tie. Although I wore it to Italy, it makes me feel like I should be exploring a souk in Marrakech, thanks to it’s intricate details and 70s feel.

The sunglasses have actually been pinched from Mr Ship-Shape, and I picked the turquoise necklace up in Thailand a couple of years ago. This kind of outfit was ideal for the hot weather, which seems like a distant memory when I look out of my window now!

Our Italian homeMonsoon top detail and turquoise necklaceMonsoon top H&M beltMonsoon top Monsoon top and Primark denim shortsStunning view


Filed under H and M, holidays, Monsoon, outfits, Primark

Subtle Summer Florals

H and M dress Next hat and Primark sunglasses

I’m excited to see florals featuring in A/W trends this season – though looking at said trends does make me mourn for summer a little – because floral prints are so versatile.

I took a mix of floral prints with me on my recent holiday to Italy, and this dress by H&M is one of them.

I found it in the sale last year for a mere fiver, and I love the fact that it not only has pockets but also boning, which helps give the top half of the dress a bit of well-needed structure – not bad for £5. I teamed it with this straw trilby hat from Next, and the tan woven sandals and sunglasses are from Primark.

I’ll be adding a pair of leggings and some ankle boots to this dress to see me through the season. What summer trends will you be wearing through till winter?

H and M dressH and M dress and clothes swap beltH and M dress and Next hat H and M floral dress


Filed under H and M, holidays, Next, Primark

A Very Vintage Summer

Vintage green blouse

Summer, is that you? Like a fine wine or a slab of cheddar cheese, Summer 2012 has taken it’s time to mature. We finally experienced a bit of a breakthrough this morning, so much so that I decided to get my legs out in these denim shorts.

The deliciously bright green blouse is one of Grandma Ship-Shape’s cast-offs, and the Paisely scarf is one I picked up from the Bristol Flea Market. The sandals are Primark and are falling to pieces (becuase I’ve literally worn them to death) but hopefully they’ll survive one last pilgrimage to the Bristol Harbour Festival. See you there?

Vintage green blouseVintage green blouse


Filed under outfits, Primark, vintage

Kat’s Clothes Swap

A couple of weeks ago I was invited to an impromptu clothes swap. Actually, it wasn’t that impromptu – Kat, who is raising money to fund her trip to work with a charity in Mexico – had been planning it for weeks, but I didn’t find out about it until S of Beautiful Plumage asked me to go that same afternoon. I love a good clothes swap, and since this one was for charity I could hardly say no, could I?

I’ve been to a couple of small-scale clothes swaps and while Kat’s was held in her home on a quiet street in Southville, it was the most organised and well-stocked swap I’ve ever been to! The photos I took on my phone are a bit rubbish, but picture a living room piled high with clothes, accessories and jewellery, all divided into neat sections, including knitwear, skirts, jackets and even ‘sparkly things’.

Not only was there an abundance of clothes to choose from, there were also ample sweet treats that Kat had whipped up, including carrot cake, scones and fresh strawberries. Yum!

After some tea and cake, nine of us spent half an hour perusing ( I love that word) the extensive collection of clothes and selecting a few outfits to try on, before getting stuck in and swapping.

I came away with some fantastic finds, including a mustard coloured chunky knit jumper from Warehouse, a linen blazer and leopard print jersey dress. Once the weather picks up I’ll put up some actual outfit posts, but for now, check out my best finds, below.

I’ve mentioned it before on the blog, but clothes swaps are such a fantastic way to socialise with friends, clear out the clothes you never wear and pick up some new threads at the same time. And, in the case of Kat’s clothes swap, you can raise money for charity, too.

Have you been to any clothes swaps recently? What’s been your favourite swapping find?

Coffee coloured Topshop jumper
Coffee coloured Topshop jumper
Redoute leopard print jersey dress
Redoute leopard print jersey dress
Blue spotty F+F top
Blue and cream spotty F+F top from Tesco
Grey linen Primark jacket
Grey linen 3/4 length sleeve jacket from Primark
Mustard yellow chunky knit Warehouse jumper
Mustard yellow chunky knit Warehouse jumper
Grey wollen jumper dress
Slouchy grey jumper dress


Filed under clothes swap, ethical fashion, Primark, Tesco, Topshop

Motel: Vintage dresses and sunshine

Motel vintage floral dress

Motel vintage floral dress

Last week I was walking down Park Street when I spotted Motel’s sale window, and I couldn’t resist popping in for a quick look. I’m pleased I did, because I found their £5 vintage sale rail and fell for this dress, above. As it was ‘£5 each or 2 for £7’ I thought it would be rude not to try on a few more vintage pieces, and didn’t find it hard to find another dress to take home.

I’ve been a huge Motel fan since I moved to Bristol for university seven years ago. Back then Motel’s shop on Park Street was called DNA and was the same brand, just a different name. At the start of every term, when my student loan got a top-up, I’d treat myself to a haircut from Toni & Guy and a dress or top from Motel. I loved the printed, loose tops and wore them until they were literally falling to pieces. Now Motel’s body-con prints are stocked in Topshops up and down the country, and the Park Street shop has shifted its focus to vintage and upcycled garments.

After I found these dresses I took them home to photograph, but my usual way of shooting in front of my huge windows just didn’t do them justice. And, since the weather was so glorious at the weekend, I thought it would be rude not to photograph them in the sunshine!

So, here are a few snaps of me in the garden, kindly taken by Mr Ship-Shape, who, despite a few initial protests, quite fancies him self as a bit of a David Bailey. I’m still quite new to being in front of the camera, so you’ll have to ignore my head tilts and hair covering my face, and instead focus on how gorgeous these dresses are! I love the floral print and cut of the first dress, and although the peach and white stripped dress (an old M&S number) is a bit large, it should be easy enough to take in at the sides for a better fit.

Motel vintage floral dress

Vintage floral dress, Motel / suede belt, vintage / grey knee high socks, H&M / tan cowboy boots, Primark

Peach and white M&S dress from Motel

Peach and white striped dress (originally M&S), Motel / black and gold belt, vintage / white canvas wedges, New Look

Peach and white striped Motel dress

Check out the blue sky - no Photoshoping required!


Filed under H and M, Marks and Spencer, Motel, New Look, Primark, shopping, vintage

Alright, our kid?

Outside Affleck's Palace, Manchester

Me with my Topshop coat, outside Affleck's Palace, Manchester. Scarf, vintage, yellow dress, Primark, grey cable knit leggings, clothes swap, blue over the knee socks, Topshop, gery legwarmers, H&M, boots, The Boot Room.

So, you can probably tell from this snap, above, that I decided to keep the Topshop coat from my recent shopping spree – and what a wise decision – this cold snap we’re experiencing doesn’t show any sign of leaving soon! It was even colder in Manchester, my destination of choice last weekend.

I’ve only ever been to Manchester once before, years ago, and I was struck by how different everyone dressed, compared to Bristol. Not bad-different, just different. There seemed to be more heels, more make-up but equally more ironic hipster, grungy looks too. This time Mr Ship-Shape and I had to contend with snow and ice (apparently not so much of a problem in Bristol), but on Saturday night there were seasoned locals walking down icey pavements in peep toe heels! I struggled in my biker boots, squealing at the slightest wobble, so I have to respect any woman how can walk through snow in six inch heels and make it look like her own personal catwalk.

The snow did put a slight dampener, literally, on exploring the city, but I did make it to the Northern Quarter, which was recommended by a friend, and was not disappointed. There were independent shops abound, including a Manchester version of Magma, and my favourite shop – Lomography. I waffled on about the delights of this shop a bit here, but suffice to say it had me dreaming about cameras for the rest of the weekend.

I paid a visit to Affleck’s Palace, a multistory marketplace that reminded me a bit of Camden market – the only place to by your clothes when you’re a teen looking for ways to stand out and blend in at the same time. I was drawn to perspex necklaces and retro rotary-dial phones and while I’m probably a littler older than their average customer, I was excited to be in a building that felt like a destination, rather than a soulless shopping centre.

We had a wicked weekend and I hope I can go back soon, preferably when it isn’t covered in snow. Have you been to Manchester? What do you love about it and where are the best shops/cafes/restaurants? Let me know by commenting below…

Oxford Road station graffiti

Oxford Road station graffiti

Snow! The view from our hotel room

Snow! The view from our hotel room

The Whiskycats performing at Sound Control

The Whiskycats, the gig we came to Manchester for, performing at Sound Control

La Sardina cameras at Lomography

La Sardina cameras at Lomography

More graffiti under the Oxford Road railway line

More graffiti under the Oxford Road railway line


Filed under clothes swap, H and M, Primark, socks, Topshop

Rock the Week

Fashion related (and totally non-fashion related) things that have made my world go round over the last seven days…

Lomography wall

  • The return of Gossip Girl. A royal wedding, the ongoing saga of Chuck and Blair, frock-tastic fashion and very pretty male cast members – what’s not to love? This week I had to restrain myself from clicking on Grazia’s Gossip Girl 100th episode spoilers – torture!
  • Getting bendy. Every Monday for the past year I’ve attended a weekly yoga class. I swear I’m about as flexible as a pencil, and the yoga classes, while relaxing, only confirm this. However, this week I was pleasantly surprised to find I really enjoyed it, wasn’t complity atrocious at it and was closer to touching my toes than I have been since I started – result!
  • Getting lost in Lomography. The only official Lomography shop in the UK outside London lives in Manchester. We went there this weekend for a gig and when I discovered this shop I was so excited I asked if I could take a photo of their amazing lomo wall, above. I wanted every camera in the shop and Mr Ship-Shape had a job persuading me to leave.
  • Post-work drinks. I’ve been out twice this week for dinner and drinks with my new colleagues – once to Start The Bus – which I bloody love, and have enjoyed wine, cider, nachos and sweet potato burgers – nom!

Whiskycats gig, Manchester

  • Dancing like a maniac to live music. As I’m quite short I tend to hide at the back or to the side of gigs, thus normally being able to see at least the heads of the people on stage, rather than being thrown around like a rag doll in the middle of a mosh pit. Last night I was at the very front of a Whiskycats gig, was able to see all the way down to the band’s trousers, see photographic evidence, above, and had a wicked time dancing with 500 other fans – brilliant Saturday night!
  • Weekend papers. If you include all the supplements (appart from Sports) these usually take me till the following Sunday to read. I love it though, even if I do get my news at a slightly slower pace! Today I have mostly been reading: Independent on Sunday.

What has been rocking your world this week? Let me know by commenting below….


Filed under photography, Primark, Rock The Week, Start The Bus, Topshop

A Roman Holiday

Colour clashing at the Colosseum

Colour clashing at the Colosseum

As promised earlier this week, here are a few outfit snaps from my holiday to Rome last week. Due to flying with EasyJet, case space was limited to I took a mix of separates and dresses, with my trusty pair of tweed and faux leather boots from Primark. Walking is one of my favourite ways to explore a new city and these boots did me proud, allowing me to explore the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Trevi Fountain and more without a hint of ‘my feet huuurt’ whining.

I was also happened to be in Rome at the same time as the Versace for H&M launch. While the label isn’t really my cup of tea I did enjoy people watching, gelato in hand, as local fashionistas paraded around Via del Corso with their gorgeous carrier bags in classic Versace prints.

One thing I didn’t get about my time in Rome was the sheer number of otherwise very chic Romans walking around in sleeping bag jackets or as I once knew them, puffer jackets. If you were a teen in the late 90s you may well have had one of these coats. At the time I begged my mum for a lime green number but these days, or at least in Rome, the colour palette is a lot more somber. Of all the hundreds of men, women and children I saw wearing these coats, maybe a three pulled the look off. The rest looked like they’d taken a tumble in Millets. Is this a legitimate trend in the UK? Answers on a postcard please…

Versace for H&M window

Versace for H&M window on Via del Corso

Versace for H&M bag

Versace for H&M carrier bag with trademark print

'Sleeping bag' coats at the Pantheon


Wrapping up for cold Roman nights: Scarf, vintage / Leather jacket, Macy's / Rose print dress, Tesco / Black leggings, Sweaty Betty / Grey knee high socks (rolled down), H&M / Boots, Primark

Colour clashing at the Colosseum: Mustard vest and fuchsia tights, Primark / Red skater skirt, Zara / Tan woven belt, swishing session / Scarf as before

H&M dress at Villa Borghese

Exploring the grounds of Villa Borghese: Floral print dress, H&M / Preppy blazer, Peacocks / 'Love' necklace, Accessorize / Scarf, belt, socks and boots as before


1 Comment

Filed under Accessorize, florals, H and M, high street, holidays, Peacocks, Primark, vintage, Zara

Lunchtime Loot: Statement rings

Primark eagle ring

There is nothing quite like a little lunchtime window shopping to perk a girl up. Yesterday I popped in to Primark to look for a ring I spotted last week. The ring in question is a (faux) gold eagle spreading its wings, see above.

While I’m all about a statement necklace or pair of earrings, I’ve always stirred clear of statement rings. Bulky and in your face, statement rings and costume jewellery seem to be essential in the fashion blogging world but since I read this post from Dressful earlier this year I can’t help but giggle when I see a bling ring pop up in an outfit post.

Since this ring was only £2 I figured it would be a cheap and cheerful way to liven up an outfit and dip my toe into the world of statement rings. Do you have a favourite piece of jewellery you just can’t take off? Share your thoughts below…

Leave a comment

Filed under jewellery, Primark