Hooray! The Big Sale at Collectif is well underway and we’re all rushing to put orders in – sometimes multiple times as there’s always that extra item you never noticed before but suddenly have to have! Maybe the beautiful Mara is one of those frocks you’ve been eyeballing for a while but weren’t too sure about? Well I can tell you it’s fabulous and you definitely need it! hehe.
I haven’t had a Mara before, though I almost bought the previous checked patterns which came out. The shirt style really appealed to me but it seemed like a lot of dress for my frame. When the green Garden Stripes version was launched, I hovered over the buy button for some time, pondering which size I would need as I’m aware the checked versions were sized smaller.
I took the plunge and decided I needed all those glorious green stripes in my life! The dress is so vibrant and I really love the pattern. I have a petticoat on underneath too for added poof and the fullness of the swing skirt is very swooshy which is excellent!
The dress can button right up to the neck and has a matching waist tie which I’ve worn as you’re meant to at the waist in the photo above, though I left the neck open as I like a more casual look sometimes with a necklace showing. However, I also really liked switching the waist tie to make a bow neck tie instead and adding my own belt too.
With long, cuffed, sleeves and a placket of concealed buttons to the front, this practical dress also has two side pockets which are super handy. I went with my normal size and luckily that was the right choice for me as a size up would have been far too big. There’s slight stretch in the fabric and the length on me is the same as a swing Caterina – which is lower calf and a bit longer than my other dresses, but I don’t really mind that.
So if you’ve been pondering this dress, I can confirm it’s brilliant – a really practical but cute piece which is lots of fun with the dramatic stripes and great sizing wise – get it in your basket! haha. It’s currently half off at £33.75 with code BS50 (which lasts until 11.59pm on the 17th) and it’s available in all sizes.
Lulu Hun Susan High Heels in green (previous season)
Adore Heart belt in red by Collectif Clothing (previous season)
Tiki earrings in green by Collectif Clothing
I’m 4’11” wearing 4 inch heels. I’m a standard size 6 in Collectif and that’s the size I’m wearing above.
The dress was bought via the fabulous Cherry Red Vintage
I bought this gorgeous dress prior to the sale when it first launched and totally forgot to write about it, so forgive my much belated review…oops. I have previously posted about Jemimas (here and here) as the polka dot versions stole my heart and although I have a couple already in my wardrobe this cool palm print was everything and I had to have it!
Just look at that totally tropical design! What’s not to love?! It screams sun-filled paradise, and let’s be honest, we’re all dreaming of days like that at the moment.
The palm design looks fantastic against the navy background. I have a thing for gigantic leaves (my house is full of them) so walking around like one is always my first option!
The Jemima has a sweetheart neckline with wide shoulder straps (still not adjustable unfortunately, the only downside to the Jemima), a fitted bodice and full, gathered, swing skirt. Running down the centre is a row of the red buttons used on a few other designs. I don’t mind the red as it always co-ordinates with my hair, but I think brown wooden buttons would have worked better on this one (like those on the previous Kimberly) as there aren’t any other red elements to it. There isn’t a zip so this is how you get in and out, using the buttons at the front.
There’s a matching buckled belt in the same fabric which can cinch in that waist. I really love that the Jemima’s always have belts in the same fabric as the dress. They also have side seam pockets! Which is obviously a must – where would we be without pockets?! And I much prefer side seam pockets to patch, so hurrah!
I teamed it with the Collectif Jessie Palm Cardigan which works really well together as the day got cooler. The cropped cardigans from Collectif are great for these styles as they sit just above the waistline, not covering the belt so you can clearly see where your waist is defined (but stay warm).
I also paired it with green shoes and turquoise, blue and green jewellery which matched the colours in the print perfectly. Picking out the colours featured in whatever you’re wearing always makes the best accents.
Size wise, I’m wearing my usual size and again, it’s true to size for me. However, if you’re a D cup or above, you’ll likely need to size up. There isn’t any stretch to the bust so those bestowed with bounteous boobage would struggle in your normal size. It sits at the top of my calf which is a lovely length for this style of dress (it’ll obviously be shorter on taller gals).
It’s 100% cotton and feels so nice on. The sale has been raided so unfortunately you won’t find any on the Collectif site anymore but at the time of writing, there are quite a few sizes over at Succubus (a reliable Netherlands based company) if you need it as much as I did.
I’m a standard size 6 in Collectif and wearing a size 6 in the Jemima above. I’m 4’11” and wearing 4 inch heels in the photos.
Cardigan: Collectif Jessie Palm (old stock)
Necklace: Collectif Natalie (old stock)
Bangles: Bow & Crossbones and Splendette
Shoes: E5P (old stock)
Hair flower: Collectif Lili (old stock), high street and eBay.
It’s been about a year since I first saw these jeans and started swooning over them. I’d followed the company for a good while before as they suit so many of my vintage lovin’ gals, especially the fabulous ‘Hug me Baby‘ style which makes all pear shaped beaut’s dreams come true!
But alas, being a bit vertically challenged, I rarely do well in trousers or jeans without alterations and they’re especially problematic if they’re high waisted as I just don’t have the extra torso space. So I almost fell off my chair when the awesome Lady K Loves designed the amazing Polly jeans – with a shorter rise and perfect for us petites!
If you’re not petite, but you prefer a mid or low rise jean, then this style would also be a great choice for you. I’m thrilled to finally own a pair of Polly’s in indigo which are now my wardrobe staple. I love the beautiful stitching with the sweetheart yoke on the back.
The fit is really good too. The rise is just where it should sit on my frame – instead of a few inches higher where other high waisted jeans normally sit on me (which is practically directly under my boobs – not a good look for anyone). They’re really comfortable, and I love the feel of the denim. Speaking of which, not only does LKL cater for all shapes and sizes with their range of jeans, they’re also very consious about ethical sourcing, fair trade, and providing a fabulous but sustainable, quality product. They’ve definitely hit the nail on the head with these jeans, and it feels great to support a company with such high ethical standards. You can read more about this process on their website (here).
The little details like the new label and iron on patch (which is definitely going to be added to my pair) are fab too:
With the leg length, I bought the 27″, but when measuring them, they’re actually 28″ so were always going to be too long on me anyway as I’m a teeny 4’11” as most of you know. I’ve rolled up twice but will likely just alter them so the roll ups sit better – nothing I wouldn’t normally do for jeans/trousers, though I think I can get away with them as they are, which never happens!
The ordering process was super easy and I emailed Boss Babe, Kessie, for sizing guidance prior to ordering (there’s a great size guide on the website but I needed a little extra help). She was so lovely and helpful and made the purchase a real pleasure. Based in Bristol, she’s still hard at work sending out happy parcels from her home office to us during these weird times, which I was really thankful for. These jeans have come at the perfect time for me as I want to incorporate a more casual look to my vintage style wardrobe. I normally wear dresses, so these have become a really cool alternative for my 50’s aesthetic when I don’t feel like putting on a frock. They ooze vintage style but with the modern fit, feel great and enable me to do whatever my little heart desires.
As well a range of jeans to suit all, LKL makes limited edition tops, skirts and accessories and offers a variety of ways to pay, including Clear Pay, so you can spread the payments if needed. There are also some cheeky sale bargains in the Last Chance section which has some great offers and is worth checking out – I picked up a cute yellow top from a previous sale and was so glad I snapped it up as it didn’t come back (it really was the last chance) – so if you see something you like, grab it! Enjoy x
Happy VE Day you gorgeous lot! I hope you’re able to celebrate in any small way you can during lockdown – be it bunting in your kitchen, or socially distanced garden parties with neighbours on your street.
Uncharacteristically, I’m not in a dress for a change! Instead, I’ve chosen a land girl inspired look with a modern twist and 50’s details (as stylistically, that’s my preferred era to wear) for my celebrations. In keeping with the red, white and blue theme and a nod towards the brilliant ladies of the Women’s Land Army, I’ve gone with the Voodoo Vixen Jasmine Overalls.
They have the cutest polka dot print over denim blue and sweet details like the sweetheart neckline, handy (and deep) pockets and a flattering cropped length.
The straps are adjustable and can be crossed over at the back. I bought a size 6 and the sizing guide states they’re true to size. Personally, I found they came up a little large on me, but not so much that I can’t work with it. I really love them and they’re super comfortable to wear. They could easily be dressed up or down and I picked out the Maria Hawaiian blouse by RocknRomance to wear underneath.
The blouse is super light and can be worn either tucked in as I have here, or tied at the front (cleverly, the ends are button free so this can be achieved easily). The tiki inspired print is so pretty and the collar can be worn up or down depending on your mood and is also available in other colours and styles. I also have the dress version of this print in a couple of colours, which is just adorable. If you haven’t found yourself browsing their site before, it’s definitely worth having a look. I found their customer service to be really good too – friendly interactions and speedy replies and delivery.
My new Tonya shoes by Lulu Hun were the perfect choice to complete this outfit with its red, white and blue stripes!
The wedge heel is so comfortable to wear and the style is just incredible. I love Lulu Hun for shoes. I bought my usual size but could have sized down. I have narrow feet though, so for those that have a wider foot, don’t size down. The ankle strap is in the contrasting pale shade and has a normal buckle, not the hoop over type. They’re so bright and fun, I adore these shoes and I’m seriously considering buying more colours.
What will you be wearing? I can’t wait to see all the photos of everyone’s events. We may not be together, but we’re united with respect for the fallen and all efforts made which afford us our normal freedoms. Take care, be safe and have fun! xx
In the fourth segment of my tour around this year’s London Edge, I was absolutely delighted to meet Samantha Capello of Charlie Stone Shoes. What a charming, elegant, lady with real passion for what she does – she very much personifies her brand, which offers beautiful vintage styling with the modern practicality of flat/low heel designs.
As someone that travels to events and then runs around them all day, I often wear something flat or low heeled for the journey, then swap to my heels once I’m there. I did this at London Edge as you can see from previous photos; I’m wearing a low heeled boot in one, (which I travelled in), and then my platform peep toes for the rest of the show. I would love to be able to wear just one pair all day but the trouble has always been finding something that’s still in keeping with the rest of my vintage styled outfit and comfortable enough to whizz from one end of the City to another. In warmer weather I usually resort to a modern ballet flat but they’re quite bland, offer little to zero support, and don’t add to the overal aesthetic I’m going for with my dresses.
Samantha has created a range of luxurious, handcrafted, shoes which have taken influences from the 1920’s to the 1950’s – they’re incredibly pretty but comfort is also key with their cushioned insoles and hidden arch support.
I’ve been a fan of the brand for a long time and adored their style but, as I’m vegan, the leather items weren’t an option for me. I was delighted to see a thoughtful selection of vegan products (I particularly love Roma and Firenze from the current collection), have been added to the upcoming season releases, using a high quality, breathable, microfibre PU, which I’m thrilled about.
These stunning rose gold and white, shell shaped, flats are called Moorea, both vegan and will be launching in April. I love the shape of these with their open toes, exuding elegance and so easy to wear with a dress on balmy summer nights or paired with capris and a light jacket for a day of exploring a Parisian city break.
I also noted they have the handy quick release buckles which I believe all collections will have going forward. They’re so much easier than having to do the buckle up each time, you just lift the strap into a hook and you’re done! I have a few shoes with this style already and they’re so much faster to put on and hold firmly in place without fuss.
Also new to the vegan range this year are these low t bar heels:
Modelling the black pair on the day, they looked great on Samantha and were clearly comfortable as she’d been on her feet all day by that point! They went really well with the dress Samantha was wearing and seemed to be a versatile shoe – something you could wear to the office or out for dinner.
The rose gold pair have the design detail of a Manhattan flat to the front, but with the addition of a small heel. They’re super sparkly and guaranteed to make your outfit shine! It felt like a really good quality glitter too, not the type which rubs off or leaves a trail everywhere you go, you can tell they’re exceptionally well made.
As well as the dazzling array of shoes, I spotted these glorious rattan bags which were launched at the start of the year.
Inspired by Grecian Summers, these sweet little bags are named Kythira and come in white (above) and natural (below) with gold fixings.
My favourite is the natural version as it sets off my Tiki inclinations. The dimensions are 20 x 13 x 6.5 cm, small enough to be demure, but big enough to hold a mobile phone, (which many vintage styled bags don’t consider), along with your other essentials. Unfortunately these have already sold out on the website (I’m not surprised as they’re undeniably a must have item) but hopefully stockists will have some incoming.
You can buy the full range directly from Charlie Stone via their website (do remember to factor in customs tax and duties when importing). It’s also important to note that they’ve taken the rather fabulous step of using only 100% compostable, plant based, mail bags for single item orders and use minimal tissue paper for packaging leading to much less waste. In a world of fast fashion, it’s so important for us to be consciously thinking about our own impact and it brings joy to my heart to see a company so proactive and innovative when it concerns our planet – we only have one and need to be kind to it.
You can also purchase Charlie Stone shoes here in the UK and EU from the following stockists:
These shops have a good selection to choose from, and some will be stocking the Summer lines, so I look forward to seeing the new styles grace their websites.
I hope you’ve enjoyed having a look at what’s to come for Charlie Stone, it was a real pleasure to chat to Samantha and learn more about her company and the exciting way it’s evolving.
The next edition of the London Edge highlights will be going live shortly, subscribe below to be notified x
With a range of vintage and modern styles, I was delighted to meet the lovely team at Sheen on my visit to London Edge. I mentioned them on the blog at my last visit (see here) as I really liked the Helena dress which was showcased on the catwalk that day.
With it’s beautiful neckline, long sleeves and full skirt, this was a stand out winter dress for me. More recently, I fell in love with the aptly named Heart dress which is so insanely pretty, it truly captures hearts.
This year, the stand was bursting with colour and unique prints, featuring their Spring/Summer looks.
There is something for everyone, from fun and flirty playsuits to casual day dresses, all the way to evening wear. My favourites from the current line are these playsuits which have the sweetest details:
The charming Summer prints, daisy buttons and lace detailing at the sweetheart neckline make these a perfect choice for lazy Summer days or exploring on your holidays. The Jana went down the runway and looked gorgeous. Just add a wide brimmed straw hat, sunglasses and some wedges and you’re set!
From the new collection, my favourite picks were from the Capsule Collection. These nautical fancies are just spectacular!
I adore a novelty print and these cute little crabs on a blue and white stripe really make a statement. The waistbands with their double covered buttons are a really nice feature too. They’ll be available as cropped trousers or a swing skirt, both with pockets (yay!).
Then I spotted this dress and I couldn’t contain my excitement:
With a little nod to the super hero in all of us, this elegantly styled dress has beautiful detailing to the shoulders and neckline. And with a border of cheery crabs scuttling around the hem (I couldn’t fit it all on one photo sorry!), this fun design is bound to be a big hit.
You may also be able to pick these two out of the stand photos which I really liked:
A casual shirt dress with a fun print is my ideal sunny shopping day attire. For cooler days I’d throw on a cardigan and tights with brown boots. This style of dress is very versatile so the Morgan Shirt Dress appealed to me.
And then there’s Bette, with her fabulously bright toucan print, combining my favourite colours (turquoise and yellow). This halterneck pencil dress ties at the neck and features a sweetheart neckline wth bow tie to the front. It’s the perfect cocktail dress for a tiki bar or summer barbecue party.
There are many more styles coming too, and while the brand is usually only available via stockists, Sheen has exciting things planned. In around a month’s time, a new ecommerce store will be available on the website, meaning we can buy direct! And everything is available in sizes 8 to 22 which provides a good range.
You may also have noticed on the stand that the brand name will be changing – from Sheen to Timeless. There’s a definite shift happening within the company and while most items are available in cotton currently (some polyester), they’re becoming a more environmentally conscious brand. To that end, the textiles they plan to use going forward will be sustainable which is a great step forward for those of us that enjoy fashion but want to think about our footprints on the planet too.
I’m looking forward to exploring the new website when it launches!
Look out for Part 3 of the London Edge previews, or subscribe below to be notified of the next publication x
I’d like to introduce you to a few new gal pals. Judy and Tess. New this season from the Collectif Clothing Spring/Summer 2020 collection, are these gorgeous vintage inspired beauties. They really are truly reminiscent of the period too with their prints and styling. I just adore them.
So first up we have Tess, which is a pencil style featuring two, large, front pockets, a centre back zip and comes with a matching fabric belt (which I’ve tied at the front in a bow).
I’m in love with the bespoke hatch check print in navy, gold and white. The print is absolutely spot on for the era. I had earmarked this piece as my ‘must have’ this season and I wasn’t disappointed!
The neckline is cut straight across which isn’t my usual style but I really like it on this dress. The hip area is quite wide compared to the bust but it’s pretty true to size apart from that, especially on the waist and bust. The length is good, sitting just below midcalf, giving a true vintage feel. I like it when my dresses still cover my knees when I’m sat down, which would have been a necessity for propriety back in the day.
Next, in the same fabric, is the Judy Hatch Check Dress. She’s a swing style with a fabulously fifties, wide, collar and a great addition to the shirtwaister styles (which I have a particular penchant for).
There’s a gathered skirt with pockets and buttons to the front. I’ve also added the fabric belt from my Tess to the waist as I felt it needed pulling in (it doesn’t come with a belt). The wide sleeves are typically 50s with their overhangs and turn ups.
It’s longer than I usually wear but I quite like the length so I won’t be making any alterations. It sits at my lower calf but should be below the knee for those that are average height. I found it came up rather large, so would advise sizing down if you want a fitted look (or if you’re blessed up top, it will be perfect for you in your normal size). I definitely feel like a 50’s housewife in this style, it’s the perfect day dress.
Finally we have Judy, the Ribbon Check Pencil Dress which is our last member of the vintage girl gang today.
In the same style as the shirtwaister dress, with buttons to the front and open collar, this Judy is a fitted, pencil option, with a lovely nipped in waist and a very mid century marvellous bespoke print of navy and yellow ribbons over ivory cotton sateen. Another fabulous print which is so in keeping with the true vintage vibes which make me swoon.
This version is much more true to size. You may even need to size up if you’re particularly busty as the waist and bust don’t stretch much beyond the Collectif size chart so check your measurements. It’s a great cut for me, sitting at my mid calf. The perfect Spring dress for running errands or lunching with your girls.
I’ll be posting more new season goodies next time (subscribe below to be informed of new posts) but for now, I hope you’ve enjoyed a little look at these mid century marvels. Everything is available in all sizes (6-22) on the website.
Dresses: Collectif Clothing
Necklace: Collectif Clothing
Earrings and Bangles: Splendette
Shoes: E5P from years ago
For reference, I’m a standard size 6 in Collectif. I’m 4’11 and wearing 4 inch heels.
So apparently we should all be tired of January about now. If you’re feeling it, I hope the rest of Jan passes quickly for you. I’m certainly looking forward to Spring as I always do – I’m definitely more of a sunshine baby than a winter one!
Banishing those winter blues has been helped a lot by an unexpected sale buy for me. I’d seen this dress almost a year ago and it was love at first sight, naturally. What’s not to love with its gorgeous Poison Ivy vibes?! However, I never wear red as I feel it clashes with my hair too much. I used to wear red a lot as a natural brunette so that took some adjusting to almost a decade ago when I became an unnatural redhead.
A few weeks ago, maybe around Christmas time, I’d noticed ASOS Marketplace were stocking Collectif as a boutique. I’d browsed and seen my normal size wasn’t well catered for on there so thought nothing of it. Then the Bella pencil dress, (which was sold out in most sizes on the Collectif main website), was hollering at me from the screen, begging me to click on her, despite knowing a 6 didn’t show up in my search.
So I succumbed, as you do, because obviously if I click there may be a 6 which was hidden and wasn’t on the search, right?! Wrong. But lo and behold, an 8 was available. The ASOS Marketplace was reduced half price, just as the main website, but it also includes free delivery. So, I took a punt and figured I’d just return it if it was too big.
It was shipped super fast but wasn’t by the normal DPD delivery from Collectif, I think ASOS must hold stock and it was delivered by Royal Mail (order placed on a Thursday evening, delivered Saturday morning). The return shipping is to Collectif direct, so you don’t have to worry about using the Marketplace as a platform to buy from, it’s all very easy and legit.
It was just as I remembered, so beautiful with it’s delicate leaf and rose strap detailing on the shoulders, boned bodice, silicone tabs and lightly padded bust (to allow you to go braless if you wish) with a matching, wide, velvet belt.
I tentatively put it on and all my concerns were gone. It was a lovely fit! A 6 would have been perfect but I could definitely get away with the 8. The fabric has stretch in it but the bodice is quite fitted. Best of all, there’s room for puddings, so I’m very happy with that! So if your size isn’t available (limited sizes left), you could try a size up as I have. I love cinched in styles like this, but which are roomy enough to eat your own bodyweight and still feel comfortable. I felt instantly sexy when I put it on.
So I’m no longer going to rule out reds anymore and embrace the clash with my hair. It’s taken me a while to get there but this was definitely the dress to do it!
My new SS20 stock has also arrived so it really will be goodbye sale, hello Summer next time on the blog. See you then! x
With Halloween now behind us, my thoughts spring forward to festive events and all the upcoming parties we’ll be attending. With that in mind, I had to share the beautiful Florence Occasion Swing Dress from Collectif, which is the most beautiful thing I’ve seen in a long time!
The sweetheart neckline is divine and the bodice is boned for a great fit. The trim is all in black velvet (yummy) and the straps (also velvet) are adjustable – woohoo! I do love an adjustable strap.
The velvet adornment continues at the front with a cute bow detail and the swing style skirt is hemmed with a velvet edge too. It’s extra pouffy from a netted underskirt, followed by a black satin overlay, and finished with the most amazing tulle layer covered in glittery polka dots which graduate with an ombre effect. This is a total head turner of a dress and you will bedazzle everyone! I can’t tell you how in love I am with it (though you’re clearly getting the gist).
The fit is bang on true to size, so if you’re in between sizes, you should size up as the waist doesn’t stretch.
I’ll be donning this fabulous beauty of a vintage inspired gown at the next Collectif Party, and I can’t wait to see where you all wear yours too! For more occasionwear inspo, I’ll be adding a few more posts soon with more options to look the belle of the ball this year. Bring on the fairy lights and champagne coupes!
UPDATE: By happy coincidence, the Collectif x Modcloth version of this dress has also just launched today. You can find it here. It’s a little cheaper and doesn’t have the velvet edged hem but is just as pretty.
Gloves – Original vintage evening gloves from an antiques fair a long time ago
Shoes – Lulu Hun Susan Heels in black
Earrings – Collectif Clothing Mansfield Hoops
Dress – from Cherry Red Vintage