• Bright & Beautiful Demmi Deckchair Dress Review [Collectif]

    As Summer is drawing to a close, I’m making full use of my sale buys and enjoying the last of the sunshine in this very sweet little dress, the Demmi Deckchair, part of the Bright & Beautiful range from Collectif. 

    It’s super lightweight and made from rayon which is perfect for warm days. I’ve previously spoken about its counterpart with the Astrid in this print, but this shorter version is really lovely too and great to have as a more casual option.

    As well as the amazing bright stripes, this dress has a gorgeous, sweetheart, neckline and adjustable straps which are great to ensure a good fit for everyone. The top part is fitted and has pretty wooden buttons running down the centre to the waist. From there, the skirt billows out with darts finishing at hip height. I really like how full the skirt part feels along with the fitted bodice. There’s also an invisible side zip to get in and out which is super handy and discreet.

    The fit is great for me. I love that it’s a mini dress version – which actually works as just a normal length dress for me! It’s a wonderful length for petites and sits just above my knee (which to be honest, doesn’t usually get seen much now!). It will obviously sit shorter for those of average height and taller. There’s no stretch in the fabric so if you’re busty, you may want to size up and also if your widest part is on the waist. I found it true to size for me and I’m really happy with how it fits.

    As the Collectif sale is coming to an end, this dress is now out of stock on the main site, however, you can still pick it up in selected sizes for just £22 at SilkFred which includes free delivery too – bargain!

    Also wearing:
    Hair flowers: Miss Bella’s Blooms and Collectif
    Sunglasses and Necklace: Collectif 
    Bangles: Splendette and Bow & Crossbones
    Earrings: Splendette
    Shoes: old favourites from E5P

    For reference: 
    I’m a standard size 6 in Collectif Clothing and I’m wearing a size 6 in this Bright & Beautiful range. I’m 4’11” tall wearing 4 inch heels.

  • [London Edge Feb 2020 Part 7] Bright & Beautiful, Lulu Hun and Collectif Menswear AW20

    In our final instalment of the Autumn/Winter 2020 previews, we’re starting with the awesome new collection from Collectif Menswear. 

    As well as the amazing Jonathan jacket pictured above (seriously, how cool is that?!), there were some great chunky knits, guaranteed to keep your other half warm (or for yourself as I’ve often said before!).

    I love a good moss stitch pattern and this bright yellow cardigan has bags of true vintage style with a modern flair, brightening up even the darkest of wintry days.

    I will always be a sucker for an atomic print, so this knitted top also caught my eye:

    The starbursts are everything! For a more casual look there are plenty of polo tops too:

    As with previous seasons, there will also be a range of novelty prints which are going to be very popular (no previews of those though to keep you in suspense!).

    Next we have Bright & Beautiful, which takes its inspiration from the 60’s and 70’s. Adding a contemporary twist to their vintage styling, there are often pieces which crossover from the past and look on trend for the modern day. Like this cropped sequin jumper which will look great with some high waisted jeans or slacks:

    The rainbow sequin detail is so pretty! Also this cute ladybird dress which is a classic 60’s mini shape in velvet, but sits a little longer than their daring lengths and has a fabulous gold print:

    As with every Bright & Beautiful season, I’m always on the look out for the new Astrid, and this tweedy version didn’t disappoint!

    Such a staple style to pair with brown boots for Autumn.

    There was also this new trench coat style which has the best tartan detailing to the lining:

    I love the turned up cuffs to reveal the tartan pattern. With a wide collar and double breast buttons, it oozes 70’s style but you could easily throw this over something more modern too. 

    Moving on to Lulu Hun and accessories now and the displays were fantastic as always. Here you can see the bags from the current collection: 

    Current season stock

    The leopard bag is particularly splendid, and there’s also a matching mirrored brooch which will be coming to the Collectif Accessories range:

    The accessories line will also launch new Natalie necklaces (you know how much I love those), one of which is this superbly pumpkin inspired treat (no tricks):

    Featured on the shoe display were these Spring/Summer prickly delights from Lulu Hun:

    The cactus wedges and pumps are really fun, and I adore a tropical leaf print!

    So what can we look forward to for Autumn from Lulu Hun? Firstly, the wonderful Mara is returning in two new shades:

    I have these in black and red already from 2018:

    They’re the perfect heel to be running around in and look so dainty with their velvet bow detail to the front, impeccably finishing off your vintage outfit. The plum and green versions will be brilliant additions.

    The next stand out pair for me were these spectacular heels:

    With faux fur all the way round, these platform heels are so cute and are like the shoe version of the Tatiana boot. I had to try them on to see how they looked of course!

    Bit of a weird angle as I was doing a balancing act of holding everything in my hands and trying to point down to my feet, without dropping everything! but, you get the picture. They look super cute on and were a really cosy fit.

    And now for the cream of the crop…..

    There are no words. These cowboy boots are just magnificent (ok, there were some words). I’m hoping they’re faux leather so I can strut around in the blue and red pair, tip my hat at random people and say, ‘howdy partner’ as I pass by.

    Finally the Autumn/Winter bags from Lulu Hun. My favourite picks were this black glitter satchel:

    So practical but so fancy! And also this incredibly cute pink heart bag:

    Isn’t it adorable?! And with all that love, it’s the perfect way to leave our jaunt around London Edge this year having viewed so many gorgeous things. I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing all the previews and do share with me which you liked most by popping a comment below x

     

    Featured brands today can be found here:
    Collectif Menswear
    Bright & Beautiful
    Collectif Accessories
    Lulu Hun

  • Lulu Hun and Bright & Beautiful SS20 Preview

    If you missed the previous Spring Summer 2020 previews, you can click for Collectif and Menswear and see what delights next year holds! Today is all about my favourite picks from Lulu Hun and Bright & Beautiful though, and first up, we’ll take a look at Bright & Beautiful.

    To be honest, I don’t buy a great deal from this range as the era isn’t something I wear much of (it has a very 70’s vibe), but occasionally there are some beauts which I just can’t be without!

    For instance, the Astrid. I’ve spoken about this style of dress previously here. It’s boat neck and flared skirt design easily lends itself to the 50’s and it’s the main dress from the range which I really look forward to seeing from B&B every season. Next year, we have this gorgeous Deckchair version coming!

    Bright & Beautiful Astrid Deckchair Dress

    It’s a showstopper for sure. I love the rainbow stripes and the addition of the red ric rac trim (it’s often lace that features on the edge instead). If you’re not an Astrid fan, then this print appears in a few other styles too so there’s something to suit everyone.

    If you are an Astrid fan, then you may be delighted to hear that it’s also coming in a new pencil style!

    Bright & Beautiful Astrid Gingham Pencil

    This looks like it will be a Summer staple for most with it’s classic gingham check and perfect crossover for work wear, lunch date or a mooch around the shops with friends. I really like how the main best sellers are all getting an upgrade next year to incorporate new versions of a very popular design.

    The gingham continues with this gorgeous red checked dress called Iris. It has a shirred top and flared skirt – again, perfectly passable for a fifties style. Just add the picnic.

    Bright & Beautiful Iris Gingham Dress

    The knitwear was a massive hit with me. There are so many cute, short sleeved, jumper styles coming, including this yellow check Sydney.

    Bright & Beautiful Sydney Check Jumper

    and the Bella Harlequin jumper in blue

    Bright & Beautiful Bella Harlequin Jumper

    Both of these have the sweetest details at the back with a row of false buttons. You could probably wear it either way around too.

    Next up is Lulu Hun. This range just keeps getting better and better – I just love all the novelty items and the accessories which match perfectly with the designs of the dresses.

    The sandals are always a big hit and they have some fabulous styles coming, including these orange, strawberry. monstera leaf Lottie sandals and the Phoebe starfish version.

    Lulu Hun novelty sandals galore!

    True vintage fans will also like this 40’s inspired, mock croc, matching bag and shoes.

    Lulu Hun 40’s style mock croc

    I also really like this wedged sandal which has a removable flower!

    Lulu Hun Kellie wedges with removable flowers

    You can just see underneath where it has a brooch and hair clip attachment. So you could pop it in your hair if you don’t want it on your shoes. Clever!

    The bags were so fun and fabulous as always. I particularly liked these bright gingham saddle bag styles with co-ordinating fruits and flowers. There’s also a little padlock feature to the front and lots of room for all your essentials. 

    Lulu Hun Gingham Bags

    And lastly, a pastel pink perfection bag with something I happen to say rather a lot.

    Lulu Hun heart shaped bag

    This heart shaped bag sums up the collection rather well I think! Will you be broke next year because there’s so much stuff you want?…..HELL YEAH! (sorry, not sorry) x

     

     

  • Collectif Outlet Sale February 2019

    So last Saturday I headed back over to the big smoke for the second Collectif Outlet Sale. I wasn’t able to attend the first sadly but I got to this one just before it opened at 11am and joined a rather large queue which had already brought everyone out and it quickly trickled in.

    Early birds at the Outlet Sale

    We were greeted by the Managing Director who welcomed us all into the pop up shop area of the Head Office. Behold, a thing of beauty! Rails and rails of pretties lined up in order of size, with shoes and accessories around the sides. There was so much to see it was super exciting!

    Sooo many goodies!

    The sale included sample sale stock – some old and some new (there were a few samples from summer 19 stock which hasn’t arrived yet) and old stock from recent and older seasons.

    I headed to the 6’s and managed to snag some really gorgeous dresses which I’d previously missed out on, then had a good mooch around the rest of the sale, bumping into a bevvy of beauties who were all as equally excited as I was to be given such an awesome opportunity to bag such bargains.

    I queued twice – the first time was pretty fast and I was done within ten minutes but while I’d been enjoying all there was to see in the outlet, the queue outside was unrelenting and never seemed to go down. People were let in but simultaneously an unprecedented amount of people would turn up and join the back of the queue again! It was so busy and the queues at the checkouts started to get bigger, tailing around the aisles. The staff were working so hard to get everyone in and checked through but the sheer volume of people meant there were queues for an hour and a half – although nobody seemed that upset about it in the store – we used the time chatting away with like minded vintage lovers and continuing to check the rails as we made our way around (you know, just in case we missed a hidden gem!). The rails were regularly restocked and the staff were just amazing – the Managing Director was even packing and bagging! All hands on deck and they did the most wonderful job. I’ve since learned that Sunday was much quieter, so perhaps we should spread out next time as there’s enough stock for everyone (Sunday was restocked too).

    Super staff working hard to get everyone’s goodies bagged!

    So, what did I get?! here’s a snapshot of my bargains and a full run down….

    Outlet haul!

    I had loved the retro tulip print on this Aida Zak Nora Abstract dress from 2017 but missed out on it at the time so I was delighted to get it for just £10! (original price was £64.00). It has a matching belt and big, white, patch pockets. I absolutely adore it! I really hope more retro prints like this appear in future seasons. In the photo below, I’m also wearing a sample necklace I picked up for £2. 

    Nora Abstract Dress

    I then spotted this beautiful Sandra Boat dress from Aida Zak (from spring/summer 2017) which has the most fantastic nautical print. It has the prettiest pin tucked shoulder detail and buttons on the back. And of course, everyone’s favourite – pockets! The belt is really good on this too as it’s pu backed with riveted holes, has a cute white plastic buckle and is made in the same fabric as the dress. Dreamy! It was reduced from £49.95 to £15. 

    Sandra Boat Dress

    Next up I found an Olive dress! This is a much coveted dress by many and I was never a fan (not based on anything other than I’d assumed it just wouldn’t suit me, although I loved it on other people). There was a forest green one hanging amidst the size 6’s for £7 (reduced from £62.00 and part of the 2015 collection). Hmmm, well at that price, it would have been ridiculous not to try it! It turns out, I now need them in all the colours as it’s become a new Autumn/Winter favourite! I really hope they make more of these in all sorts of colours. It’s so comfy and cosy to wear. 

    Olive Dress

    The pic above looks smooth for some reason, but it’s actually a ribbed knit fabric as seen here:

    Olive dress close up

    I hadn’t really looked at the Primrose dress before but this satin pencil from 2017 features a sweet little bow at the waist and drew my eye. It has a deep v at the back and is boned for support. I really love it and it’s the most perfect evening wear. I can’t wait to take it out! The original price was £44.00 and I got it for £5, what a steal!

    Primrose dress

    I had previously seen this beautiful flocked palm print on another of the Bright & Beautiful range but hadn’t paid any attention to the Sandy Devore dress, which was a mistake! From last year’s collection, it has a classic fitted shape at the top and a swing skirt. It was £50.50 down to £7 and I look forward to wearing it for dinner dates, the mesh overlay is just divine.

    Sandy Devore dress
    Flocked palms on a mesh overlay

    Moving on from the dresses, I also picked up this fluffy and fabulous Fatima jumper which had been on the site recently (originally a 2017 design). With long sleeves and a cropped length, it has a cute ric-rac collar and keyhole feature and is really soft. I’ll be wearing this a lot as the weather has just switched back to being cold! I’ve paired it here with the Kayleigh skirt I already had (bought in last year’s sale from Camden). It was £44.00 but I checked out at £10.00.

    Fatima Jumper and Kayleigh Skirt
    Close up of the ric rac and keyhole detail

    I never used to wear shorts (bit worried about being too old for them), then I bought my first pair of high waisted Ayanas and I was sold! I have a few pairs now and this Tropical Flamingo pair from the Collectif x Modcloth collaboration were from last year’s stock. They were down from £34.50 to £5! Perfect for balmy, sunny, days and I love their deep pockets. I wore it here with my Lucy Gingham cardigan from last summer.

    Flamingo Ayana Shorts

    I also picked up this orange Elvira parasol which was reduced to £5  from £15 and it will protect my pillar box red hair from the sun in the most fabulous way.

    Elvira Parasol

    Although there were some changing rooms at the sale, I just winged it and luckily managed to come away with a clean sweep of everything fitting as I’m a pretty standard Collectif size (except for being petite, obviously!) so I can usually buy off the peg and it will fit.

    I had the best day and it was really nice to see the Head Office too – what a lovely location for a fantastic team to work in. I look forward to many more outlet sales ahead – the prices are so low and there’s a great variety for everyone, making it possible to pick up old pieces you’d missed and new pieces which aren’t even out yet. It’s definitely a day to pop in your calendar. Just allow yourself lots of time as this event is now extremely popular, take a drink to stay hydrated (we were so lucky with the weather, what a blissfully sunny February day!) and have a blast! See you at the next one xx

    View from the Royal Victoria Docks

     

    Ps for anyone reading this looking for information about the Collectif Outlet Sale location, get the DLR to Custom House, walk the full length of the concourse towards the Excel, down the stairs and turn right. The Collectif warehouse is in front of you with the sign featured on the main image and you walk down the stairs to enter. There is disabled and pram access via another entrance if you let Collectif know. 

  • Collectif Reviews – Bonnie Trousers, Mona Shirt and Bright & Beautiful Astrid dress

    So as well as a trip to London Edge, I also sprinted over to the Camden store – mostly to catch up with the team there whom I adore. They are truly special with so much care taken with every customer, making them feel absolutely beautiful inside and out and giving them a guiding hand if unsure. The service is always provided with a very warm welcome and nothing is ever too much. The customer service is impeccable in store and it’s the reason I travel so far to visit time and time again (as well as the fabulous clothes obviously!), but the friendly staff always make it a very special day for anyone that visits.  Looking at that amount of Collectif stock at the Edge had made me need to purchase something though, and there are still plenty of bargains to be had – in store currently has an extra 15% off sale items too! Amazing! 

    I tried on a few things (I normally take half the shop into the changing room with me) and decided upon these in the end. The first of which I’d been hankering after for a few months because, well look at this awesome check! One of my favourite colours to wear is yellow, and this yellow and blue tartan just screamed for me to buy her since she launched (but I waited as I’d gone completely mad last season, as with all seasons I guess!).

    Bright & Beautiful School Check Astrid

    The School Check Astrid has a full skirt and is lovely and soft. She has flattering boat neck, teal trim to the edges and a side zip. Although she doesn’t have pockets, this can be forgiven for how beautifully vibrant the dress is and it’s total swish-worthiness (yes, I just made up a word). I paired mine with the Lulu Hun Juliette heels in yellow and found it true to size (bought my normal 6) with room to spare around the waist. Plenty of room for puddings!

    My next bargain buys were items I’d previously never considered. Being petite, I struggle with high waisted trousers as the rise is often too high for me. However, being a gingham freak (I clearly went gaga over this black and white check as I bought it in every style, including the shoes! see my previous posts), I figured I’d keep everything crossed and give them a try. 

    To my absolute delight, they fitted really well! The Bonnie Gingham Trousers are a cigarette style, with a fitted top half and slim leg further down. They’re fastened with a side zip and hook and eye and have a pocket at the back. I bought my normal size and found them spot on true to size. There’s no stretch in the waist though so if you’re in between sizes on the chart, you’ll need to order up.

    Collectif Bonnie Gingham Trousers and Mona Shirt

    I tried them on with the Mona shirt, which again, I hadn’t looked at previously (as I don’t wear workwear clothes), however, I soon realised this blouse is just perfect for a classic, pin up, weekend look too. The white works really well with the trousers I think, and I paired red shoes and a cinch belt for a pop of colour. The Mona has a the most gorgeous open v neckline with a lovely collar, three quarter sleeves with cuffs and the fabric has light stretch. I found her true to size and very flattering on the décolletage!

    The Astrid was £30.38, Bonnie’s were £12 and the Mona was £11.62 – so two full outfits for £54! The extra 15% off sale items ends on Sunday 10th (in store only), so be quick and remember there’s the Outlet Sale weekend at the end of the month too so if you’re local (or even if you’re not – I’m not and I’ll be there!), pop along for limited edition and sold out styles with dresses from £10! See you there x