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Misc Updates

Misc Updates

A Decade Wiser?

At work a few days ago, we were researching UK based fashion bloggers in their early 30s. These are my peers, and I should have been able to list dozens, but struggled to find more than a handful. It seems like this age is not catered for in quite the way I expected. I’ve seen so many of my favourite bloggers write soul-searching posts in the last few months about the state of blogging and where we go from here. The general feeling? So many of us who’ve been doing this for years feel a bit disillusioned. Amazing young talents are snapping at our heels, and it’s easy to feel a bit burned out.

The fact that young bloggers are dominating large parts of the industry does make sense. They had the head-start that they grew up knowing what blogs are. They can see what the trailblazers did, learn from it, and improve on it. Young people also have a hell of a lot of enthusiasm and drive; I am first to admit I don’t put nearly as much time into my personal blog now as I did when I was 21. They’re also fearless, whereas I feel like my anxiety has got worse the older I’ve got.

There are some obvious commercial reasons too; the way we consume information on the internet has become a lot more visual, and when it comes to Instagram in particular, young and pretty sells – let’s not pretend it doesn’t. But I also think as you grow older your interests widen and your lifestyle changes. I’d wager there are a lot of women my age who started out with fashion blogs who simply don’t have the inclination to blog about clothes any more. They’re too busy working, having babies, travelling, making a home. Their blogs expand as their lives do, which is why most thirtysomething blogs aren’t topic-specific. I know I’ve widened the net just about every year. The irony is when I started blogging at about 16, I wrote about anything. I don’t know when it was that I suddenly thought I had to stick to one topic in case people thought my posts were “irrelevant”.

The point of this post? Realising I am actually NOT blogging in a saturated market has spurred me on to take this blog a little more seriously in 2015. I have so much more to share now than I did 10 years ago, I need to stop being too scared to press ‘publish’. You won’t be seeing outfit posts featuring floppy hats and crop tops. I will not be getting ombre hair. But I will be blogging more openly and more honestly. To help I’ve stripped things right back, got a snazzy new responsive design for the new year, and I’m going to endeavour to post a little more often.

I hope you’ll be here when I do.

Misc Updates

Shoots, Skiing, Sunshine and Shopping…

You know how this one goes. It’s been a while, I haven’t been around much, sorry it’s been weeks since my last blog, etc etc. I’ll spare you the usual empty apologies. The truth is I don’t see the point in blogging for the sake of it, which is one reason why you don’t see dozens of new posts here each month. But on top of that I’ve been away a bit recently, and also I’m trying desperately not to get home from work every day and instantly jump on my laptop – not only is it killing my eyes (wrinkles! I have wrinkles at 28!) but it’s doing nothing for my social life either! However, a few things have happened that deserve a little catch-up, so read on for holiday gossip and the first time I’ve worn a white shirt since I left school…

First up was the TM Lewin White Shirt Challenge. Along with a group of other bloggers, I was challenged to style up the classic white shirt the way I would wear it. You can read more about my experience over at Catwalk Queen, but I saved one of the pics for Big Girls Browse as a little teaser! I went for the most obvious hourglass look I could think of!

Following that were the two short trips that make up this year’s Summer holiday (since I’m currently in the process of trying to buy a flat, a big trip away this Summer is just not possible). The first 4 days were spent with my parents in Spain. They’d rented an apartment in Granada, which put us in the rare position of being able to spend one day at a ski resort, and the next at the seaside. Here I am with my mom in our matching headbands at the Sierra Nevada. I didn’t ski – I’m far happier in the bar with a glass of vino blanco!

The day after we hit the slopes, we drove down to the coast and spent the day in Nerja. Here I am taking a very brief dip in the (freezing) Med in what I have to say is one of the best bargain swimsuits I’ve ever come across.

This baby costs £12 from George at Asda – I actually discovered it when the PR team popped one in the press day goodie bag, but I’m definitely going to grab the floral version too as they’re super cheap, the fit is great (padded cups for a bit of shape, control tummy and a ruched panel for a bit of a 50s vibe). The only thing I would say is that the ‘skirt’ section does ride up occasionally if you’re splashing about. But it’s £12 – can’t really complain!

After Spain I was back in work for a few days before I gave Easyjet yet more of my money for a trip to the French Riviera, and with it the chance to tick something off my bucket list – a visit to Monaco! For some reason (blame Grace Kelly and James Bond) the idea of glamorous Monte Carlo has always appealed to me (in fact I love the idea of visiting all the microstates, except perhaps Sealand). We were there for the men’s quarter finals of the Rolex Masters Tennis tournament, a huge treat from my boyfriend’s parents!

After watching Murray lose and Nadal win, we went into Monte Carlo itself to do a bit of exploring. I have to say I felt slightly let down. I was expecting real vintage glamour, but what I got was a lot of posing, boy racers and a crazy street plan that makes exploring the city virtually impossible without an epic guidebook. Don’t get me wrong, the views over the riviera are beautiful, the sea really is an unbelievable shade of azure, just looking at all the boats and cars is entertainment enough (yacht with a helicopter on it, anyone?) and the city is a structural work of genius carved into a mountain with a maze of underground tunnels, it just wasn’t as romantic, warm and welcoming as I’d expected.

Perhaps you just need money to enjoy it? Or maybe they just didn’t like my cat print dress? (Dress from Red Herring, jacket from Supertrash, belt from Primark)

In contrast to Monaco – which I think deserves a second trip after a bit more research – I can’t recommend the south of France enough. We stayed in Mougins, a beautiful old village up on a hill overlooking Cannes, and everywhere we visited during our stay was beautiful. The beach and port at Golfe-Juan, the antique market in Cannes…even the train journey down to Monaco was like an organised coastal tour (it runs along the seafront, going past resorts like Villefrance, Eze and Nice). All this is only an hour and a half from Gatwick, and it gave me a chance to put my A’ level in French to the test (result: j’ai oublié comment parler français).

In between the holidays, photoshoots and work, I also managed to buy some stuff. More on all of these, and a few other new purchases, soon. But I think it’s safe to say despite no big Summer holiday coming up, I’m definitely getting into the Summer spirit. COME ON SUNSHINE!!!!