2020 Vision

First blog post of the new year! Hooray! I always love writing this because not only does it feel like an official fresh start but it's a little benchmark to another year my blog is still ticking along and this makes me all kinds of happy especially as we now enter it's FIFTH year going strong. So amazing, if not a little daunting how quickly the time has gone by. I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and an even more wonderful New Year Eve... Let's hope the Twenties are as roaring as they were hundred years ago. Flapper skirts, beaded head-dresses and jaw length bobs at the ready, I'm not at all opposed to bringing back a little 1920s fashion! Charleston and Gatsby inspiration aside I just wanted to very quickly check in with you guys because I don't know if it's just me but it seems reaching both the end of 2019 as well as the end of a decade has meant that the "new year/new me" talk flying round on social media has been ten fold! And as lovely as these posts are to read, I wanted to share my thoughts... 

Tailor Made Winter Style

I think at one point or another we're all guilty of falling into that age old trap of wearing jeans like a bad habit. You know the one where every morning you wake up, stare aimlessly into your wardrobe with such good intentions, indecisively trying to construct an outfit together in your head, before eventually opting for the easy way out and grabbing those trusty stone washed jeans which were calling your name the entire time. I've been playing out this scene a lot over the last month as I find myself slowly but surely getting sucked into the denim trap once more. The problem is quite simple- right now I just want to be comfy and my jeans have never let me down. I know they don't make for the most groundbreaking outfit but they do the job. It's just too cold and too miserable to even consider opting for one of the many perfectly lovely dresses I own and yet some how this poor excuse doesn't seem to help curb the ever increasing guilt I feel every morning when I choose the easy option yet again and shun the rest of my wardrobe. For the record, if you're wearing a well put together outfit which involves a skirt, dress or jumpsuit in the cold, wet Manchester whether, well then I salute you and I think you should know you have your shit together.

Black Velvet If You Please

Party wear posts have become a little early December tradition of mine and I've got to admit they're something I always look forward to writing. Kinda ironic considering a lot of my party wear posts are often around themes such as "Easy Party Outfits" or "A Lazy Girl's Guide To..." because let's face it dressing "out out" just isn't my bag and so every year I try to style festive looks together using pieces I feel comfortable in and that don't warrant sky high heels to work. This year I've decided not to over complicate things and I'm going back to basics. I've finally come to the conclusion that when it comes to dressing to impress over the festive season there really is just one fail safe item you need in your wardrobe. This post is simply an ode to the black velvet dress because after years and years of never letting me down, I just think this item deserves it.

Vintage- A Love Story

I've been a busy little bee this past month as I finally launched my own little Vintage Instagram Shop called Top Of The Town Vintage! The first collection titled "Cavilleri Collection" launched the Wednesday just gone and metaphorically speaking, it flew off the shelves with only 3 pieces left, waiting to be snapped up by a fellow vintage lover. I am completely stunned and little humbled by the reaction in all honesty. Top Of The Town Vintage is a real passion project for me, something I've been mulling over for months now and am genuinely doing simply for the love of it. Truth be told in hindsight I'm not exactly sure what my expectations were in terms of success, all I knew was that it was a project I've been enthusiastically working at and that I was nervous as hell to announce it! With this being a secret little idea I've been working on for quite some time now, you might say- as cliche as this sounds- it's become my little baby and so I guess the nerves were understandable, putting something you truly care for out there for the world to see is ever so slightly daunting. But with the first collection launched and I couldn't have asked for a better outcome, so I guess I can take a deep breath.... And move on to the next collection. Yikes!

For The Check Of It

Welcome back me! I'm acutely aware my blog writing has really slipped over the past year but with the launch of a podcast, T-shirt range and recently announced vintage Instagram Shop (Top Of The Town Vintage- go follow me on Instagram now please), I think it would be fair to say I've had a busy old year and my hands have been ever so slightly full. This is no excuse, I know I know and for the past few months I've had that niggling feeling urging me to return to my blog soon. So here I am and it's good to be back! I figured it's been a considerable while since I wrote about fashion or given any sort of shopping update and October seemed like a better time than any to get the ball rolling with a style related post. Autumn is my favourite season ever, ever, EVER for two reason; firstly I adore my Autumn wardrobe above any other season because I feel like it's the one time of year when my style really comes into itself. Basically I feel like Autumn suits me. The second reason is because let's be honest, Autumn is that one time of the year when you can truly get away with reverting back to acting like a child. You can pumpkin carve, play dress up and get all giddy for fireworks, bonfires and eat treacle toffee in abundance. Autumn is awesome (Awetumn if you're a fan of puns). 

You Can Go Your Own Way- Learning To Say No

Has anyone else been watching Kathy Burke's Channel 4 documentary series All Woman? If not, why not? I would highly recommend you give it a try! Her commentary on what it means to be a woman in 2019, along with her no bars held attitude not only gives you some serious food for thought but leaves you asking the question, "why can't I be more like Kathy?". She's down to earth, insightful and straight down the line without being abrasive or judgemental and although the the topics discussed aren't necessarily groundbreaking, her honest approach is refreshing. In the most recent episode she explores the ideology behind motherhood in modern day society and I've got to admit a lot of what she had to say struck a gigantic cord with me. Since heading into my early thirties I've noticed a real shift in how people see me and what is expected. At the risk of sounding slightly dramatic, it's genuinely shocked me to learn that these preconceived ideas of what a woman SHOULD do and at what age still exists (maybe I was naive to think otherwise)! I've wanted to broach this little niggle of mine on my blog for a while now and in light of Kathy Burke's latest episode (or in a bid to make good on my wish to be more like her) I've finally decided to pen down my thoughts on what exactly my late twenties/early thirties has meant to me so far and why apparently I'm completely off-roading from the path that has seemingly already been planned out for me.

Who Likes Short Shorts?

Being 18 years old in the late noughties definitely had its style pros and cons. Pros included an abundance of vintage tea dresses, the return of the Barbour jacket/Russell & Bromley loafers and who didn't love an American Apparel overpriced jersey skirt? Cons included Disco Pants (gone but never forgotten... sadly), leggings under dresses or worse, just on their own and knee high socks (which I still secretly pine after). It was the golden age of indie dressing and looking too cool for school was always the aim. Ten years on I'm of course oh so thankful my style has moved forward and whilst I was very glad to say goodbye to a number of fad trends (Disco Pants I'm looking at you again), there are some which on a practical level seemed a little difficult to let go of. Enter the denim short, a summer style staple back in 2007 and every year since then. When I was a little nipper of eighteen years old short shorts were my go to. Worn to death pretty much every day in summer with a Breton top and high tops or on a night out dancing to MGMT with tights and a chelsea boot. They were a look, fashioned together from vintage Levis 501's haphazardly cut into the teeny weeniest of denim hot pants you ever did see. Now don't get me wrong denim shorts are most definitely still a thing, in fact I'd say they're an absolute classic which have seen me through pretty much every holiday and festival in the last ten years. That said as I entered my late twenties I think I can be forgiven for opting out of a tight, knicker length short, instead favouring something a little more comfortable shall we say?