Sunday, August 17, 2014

The yummy mummy

I started my Saturday by grabbing a home-brewed cup of coffee, a croissant and getting quickly ready for my morning nails appointment.
This was my second visit to a 'Chinese' place. I was going to give up on gel/acrylic nails due to the steep price, so the recommendation for an affordable, (almost) local spot came in at the right time. The fact that most of the staff barely speak English does not stop them from delivering a great & efficient service.    
While my hands were getting prepped I stared out the window and with curiosity watched a car being parked right outside into an incredibly tight parking spot. Although I couldn't understand why would anyone bother going for it, I admired this girl's parking skills. 

She got the chair next to me and I couldn't help but notice an understated but expensive watch and purse. 
I focused on maneuvering U Magazine on my lap trying to read some of it and paid no attention until half way through my neighbor's treatment, when she said: 'I'll just run out for a sec to check on my baby'. I looked up terrified trying to figure out whether she's possibly referring to a pet tied outside and noticed that only myself and the guy doing her nails thought anything of it. All the other ladies were happily carrying on with their treatments. On her way out the most Chinese/broken English 'open the window' came from her therapist. To my astonishment she replied that it's too cold out. 
After a quick peek through the car window she was back in her chair. She mentioned that she'll bring him in if he starts crying. At that stage I knew she's definitely referring to a baby and again, nobody seemed to take note. Considering the noise of all the mechanical tools being used on my nails there was no way she could hear a thing. Either she realised that or remembered that she's a mother, she decided to bring the baby in. 
The boy couldn't be more than 6 months old and as cute as he was, I couldn't get over the situation. He was sitting in his buggy, breathing in the nauseous chemicals and quite possibly nail debris from all the filing around him. 

Taking the child's safety and health aside, I felt kind of sorry for the ladies around me. I was most likely the only one there who wasn't getting 'time off kids'. Bringing a child in felt like a violation of some unspoken rules and it didn't sit right with me. Who am I to judge though? As I heard many times - you won't understand until you've children yourself... So, trying to be as judge-free as I could, I asked my sister (a mother of two) for a view on the situation. She was not impressed and after what I expected as motherly worry for the baby's safety she also agreed with my sentiment of the kids free zone.

Has the concept of yummy mummies brought things to an immoral level? I admire women who manage their careers, kids, personal lives and still look fabulous but is that how they now achieve it? I always felt that children change women; it suddenly becomes acceptable to bring kids to a no-kids wedding, party or a girlie night in. I strive to keep an open mind and not judge those in a situation I can't fully understand but this time, I really felt that I've seen enough. 

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Day Trip to Chic #Oyster Pier

Just before the tiny town called Sneem, there's a little hidden gem of a harbour - the Oyster Pier. I won't lie to you, as much as I love outdoors I did not make my trip down there just for the pier. I actually spent most of the day at Parknasilla. I enjoyed one of their amazing wrap treatments and spent about 2 blissful hours in the relaxation & thermal suits area. When my boy came to pick me up we enjoyed a lunch on the terrace with stunning views of the coast and mountains.

After that we took a walk around the Oyster Pier but as you can see, my outfit was a little bit more Spa than fishing suitable. I couldn't help but get some shots with Molly who is becoming a bit of a model ;)

Dress - Polish brand Mosquito
Velvet pumps - Zara
Sunglasses -
Necklace - vintage St.Anthony medallion bought on Etsy

It's in the details...

Bag - Zara
Scarf - River Island (present)
Left hand forefnger - Pandora
Tips on Sneem:

  • Parknasilla for food, spa, anything
  • Oyster Pier for nature
Some of my other faves in the area:

  • Jim's Coffee House in Glengarriff (best coffee & brunch for miles)
  • Manning's Emporium in Ballylickey - for tapas at weekends
  • The Fish Kitchen in Bantry - amazing food, a bit of a let down on service last time but will try again
  • Organic Cafe in Bantry - before Jim's I used to go that far to get my fix! 

Check out Kildare Village's fab #DayTriptoChic video HERE

Friday, August 8, 2014

Day Trip to Chic #Castletownbere

This little town is probably lowest on my go-to list due to lack of good food offers and highest due to the most amazing coastal drive that leads to it if you're coming from Glangarriff.

We went down to Castletownbere on one of the hottest days I ever experienced in West Cork so I wore an airy, loose dress. I very rarely wear heels when I go to West Cork but I always have a pair of boots with me which works all year round. As we ended up going to a funfair later on the dress proved a little bit short but still manageable.

Dress - Vila (thrifted)

It's in the details...

Bag - Lacambra
Ring - River Island
Boots - New Look
Sunglasses - Life Style Sports

Tips on Castletownbere:

  • There's only 1 place I trust to eat: Jack Patrick. Not fancy but reliable food, good service and good value
  • What to do? walk along the beautiful harbour
  • Driving down the above mentioned route? Go down to Seal Harbour, you'll think you're in Greece.. 
 Check out Kildare Village's fab #DayTriptoChic video HERE

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Day Trip to Chic #Kenmare

Have you seen Tara's ( recent collaboration with Kildare Village? It's well worth checking out, see the video below. 

Tara's fab outfits inspired me to create my own small series of #DayTriptoChic

Going away to West Cork for a Bank Holiday weekend couldn't be more perfect. I took some outfit photos to share with you in my few favourite locations and I will also share a few tips on the area. 

First up, Kenmare. 

My outfit is very casual and comfortable. In my opinion Toms are the perfect footwear for any BH situation. White shirt (dotted = cuter) lends the outfit a little bit of chic without being too perfect (an ice cream stain won't show).

Jeans, sunglasses & shirt - New Look
Shoes - Toms @ Office
Ring - bought at Dublin Flea Market

Kenmare tips: 

  • Best restaurant: Packies
  • Best brunch: tough one but probably BellaVita
  • Great for: crafts & art, walk along the main street to find a gallery in pretty much every small walkway
  • Regular market by the park, great for wooden boards etc
  • For tea & cake: Jam 
  • There's a new second hand shop opened (a few doors down from Packies) with some great vintage selection (spotted: fab leather Gabor boots € 60)
  • It's small but extremely picturesque and busy 

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Looking forward -> AW'14

Looking at AW'14 collections I started compiling a list of what I believe will work this winter and here's a sneak peek of my top picks from Arnotts.

Starting on the casual side jeans remain skinny, high-waisted and dark. There's a lot of dark navy and blacks so if you're looking for something different, I think this oxblood pair is a fantastic choice and looks amazing with the black ankle boots and top. If you're sticking to black (I won't blame you, they are top of my shopping list right now) the 2nd Day pair below will work for everyone and with everything.

5 Units, € 110
2nd Day € 145

I have a feeling I will keep my dresses simple this winter, however, draping and knots are very welcome. The selection below covers every shape, colour and style I need  right now: oversized, layered, draped and knotted. 

D Effect € 350, House of Dagmar € 340

2nd Day € 130, YAS € 70 (it's called 'Anna' - literally my name written all over it ;)

I am loving so many coat styles this year, it's getting boring! But if I REALLY had to keep it to 3... it would be these 3. The Lennon Courtney one is definitely ahead of everyone else so far. 

Lennon Courtney, € 350

House of Dagmar € 850, Goat € 680

Last but definitely not least are these 3 slightly unusual items. I couldn't resist the print on this skirt, I'm delighted to see that Orla Kiely is still getting me excited with her print, I was worried at one stage that she moved away from fashion to focus on homeware full time. This skirt is fun but also very classic so you could still totally rock it in the office.

Orla Kiely € 220

The top has made it to the list thanks to draping, it's a very flattering shape but watch out for this colour - it may drain light complexions. 

YAS €45

The fluffy, fun roll neck in beautiful blue. It will brighten up any look or wardrobe throughout autumn winter. I want it so bad... 

Pinko € 265

Sunday, July 27, 2014

9-to-5 #cropped top

I talked about 9 to 5 dressing being a challenge many times before but over the last 2 weeks, it has turned into a bit of a nightmare. As much as I love summer in Ireland, the two unexpectedly hot and humid weeks can really make you sweat (due to the stress of wearing inappropriate clothes, not just the temperature).

I strongly believe that keeping legs out is the best way to fight summer in the office (I can't believe I'm actually saying that but considering that my hair is up, I'm definitely up for a fight!). Keep the hemline sensibly low, the shape comfortably loose and the waist suitably high. As soon as your skirt ticks these 3 boxes you can go for a cropped top and you're still looking work appropriate (and hot, not perspiring type of hot though). Miss one and you'll be the talk of the office (for all the wrong reasons).

When it comes to handbags for work, I'm afraid for me it's always about size (it has to fit all of the emergency make up, umbrella, sometimes spare shoes and of course a tablet, diary & other work items). Effectively all my work bags are either in bold block colours or printed. Depending on my mood (rarely the outfit) I pick what suits the day. Mismatched? Potentially, I call it interesting.
Shoulder strap = an advantage.

Top - Boohoo

It's in the details... 

Ring - Dublin Flea Market
Watch - bought in States

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Reflective footwear

Your feet don't always need to reflect the occasion or your mood. This autumn they can reflect the person standing beside you.
Am I making no sense? Possibly. Check out the Penneys range of metallic footwear and you may just get what I'm saying.

I was keeping an eye on this trend when flicking through August magazines, unconvinced, how it could possibly fit into my (very 9-to-5 driven) wardrobe. I have an answer and it's keeping my feet under the desk!

Metallics here I come...

 € 15, in stores early September

€ 22, in stores September

Platforms same as above, loafers € 15 in stores September

 Less reflective but an amazing version of Mary Jane's: 

€ 20, in stores late August

All shoes @ Penneys


Sunday, July 13, 2014

It's the real thing

There are brands which never age. Very few, but there are. Every time you encounter one of those, it takes you back down memory lane to good old times and it still remains relevant now.
Coca cola is one of those brands for me. I remember when it was a luxury to find a bottle of it at home, a sign of celebration and most likely a family gathering. I remember how amazing it tasted in the scorching Italian sun, served in a glass bottle with a slice of lemon, on my very first trip away with the boy. In my mind, it never ages (I hope that neither do people who drink it;)
When I found this sweatshirt in Penneys I thought it's just perfect. It' comfy, it's timeless like the Coca Cola brand and it comes in one of my favorite colours - grey.
Definitely a great buy.

Jeans - Zara
Sweatshirt - Penneys

It's in the details...

 Bag - Natalie B Coleman
Shoes - Jeffrey Campbell @ Urban Outfitters

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