Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Style Advice: Blogger Style

Wednesday morning and back in the office. It's good to be back, hope you had a lovely weekend. I've had a roller coaster few days, mostly ups thankfully with very few downs. I think I quite fancy sitting on the round-about for a little while!

Today on the Notebook some over-due style advice for a dear blogging friend in New Zealand. Mel is a busy Mum to three beautiful children with a successful design blog, Armoire, Pegs and Casserole to keep her busy.

Mel wrote a few weeks ago looking for some style inspiration for her everyday wardrobe:

I have a question for you for a future blog post. The bloggers uniform. A usual day for me revolves around school and kindy drop off, back home to work and/or off to take photos and then school and kindy collections, perhaps an after school activity and every so often an opening or launch in the night. I love to feel comfortable, I'm terrible with heals unless they're wedges. I'd really like to look chic yet with an edge. How could I carry a look throughout the day? Mel xx

It's a lot to consider isn't it? 

A busy Mum, a design-led job, openings and events to attend, but at the root, a desire to be comfortable, confident in all these different situations, and to feel her style reflects all these interests and aspects of her life. With private clients I would spend time with them getting to know their life, routine, existing wardrobe and demands for what they might need to buy, but as Mel and I are on opposite sides of the world this might prove difficult! Shame!

So I've got an idea of Mel's taste from pictures and Pinboards instead. Her taste in clothes is reflected in her taste for all design; modern, unfussy, with an eye to design details, and quality finish. Mel should look to reflect this authentic side to her style by building new pieces into her wardrobe over time. This isn't a process anyone should rush, but look to add organically to what you already have in your wardrobe.

Start by editing your existing pieces. Ask yourself:
  • Do I love it?
  • Do I wear it?
  • Does it fit well?
  • Do I feel good when I wear it?

If the answer is no to any of these questions then consider if it can be altered to fit better, or saved for doing the gardening in? If not it might be worth sending to charity or passing on to a friend you know would love it.

1. Bag, Massimo Dutti | SHOP NOW
2. Shirt, H&M | SHOP NOW
3. Coat, Cos | SHOP NOW
4. Dress, Zara | SHOP NOW 
5. Jeans, Emerson Fry | SHOP NOW
6. Silk dress, MadeWell |  SHOP NOW
7. Silk blouse, & Other Stories | SHOP NOW
8. Sandals, Mango | SHOP NOW

Once you've pared down your existing wardrobe to pieces you love and wear regularly it's now time to start filling in the gaps. I've written before about starting with the basics and building up so I won't go over this too much, but consider buying a few really great capsule pieces that you know will be wearable for most days. For Mel these might be:
  • Cropped trousers / jeans
  • Knee to mid-length skirts for everyday
  • A few well-cut shirts and blouses
  • A great leather bag for your laptop / kids essentials
  • A couple of investment dresses that can be dressed up and down

Look for quality fabrics, blouses and shirts in soft silks and cool cottons that will look smart but effortless. With the basics in place consider where to add your own distinctive personality. I think Mel should look for architectural or structured tailoring for a design-edge. This is where the quality will speak, but doesn't need to necessarily be designer prices. Great tailoring can be found at ZaraCosMassimo Dutti and Mango [hoping that some of these might be available in New Zealand?!]. But with these statement pieces it's worth saving and spending what you can afford, not the time to scrimp.

Mel is influenced by French style and I know this is key to her aesthetic. This kind of easy, everyday approach is all about the details; a rolled cuff, ruched sleeve, a piece of antique, statement jewellery to lift a sweater from the ordinary to the chic. Mel should embrace her eye for design and be bold with the details whilst keeping the structure simple. 

I hope that helps Mel? Be confident in your choices and make considered purchases that will reflect your aesthetic and you can't go wrong!

Don't forget if you have a style question click on the link to the right of the screen.


  1. Amy you are a true gem. This is such great advice and I think that this weekend, I'll be giving some good attention to my wardrobe. We don't have Zara or Mango here but we do in Sydney and I'll be popping home soon! A million thanks Amy! Mel xx

  2. Thanks Mel, I hope it's useful! It's had not knowing which stores you have there but a lot of international brands will ship too perhaps? xx


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