Friday, 30 August 2013

The Undercover Blogger

Us bloggers write because of the love of it and more often than not it begins when we are inspired by something else we have read.  We want to share our own thoughts, ideas and creativity with other like-minded readers.

With so many different social media sites these days, it can often be frustrating that everyone seems to know everything about everyone else. Let's face it we all like to have a nose about what other people are doing from time to time on Facebook, but at times it can feel a little false especially when 'friends' are judging everything that you post.  Many people now use Facebook purely to keep in contact with people and tend not to actually share a lot on their personal profile.  On the other hand, some share every breathing moment.  So why is it that we don't want to share on Facebook with our 'friends' yet we are happy to blog to the whole world?

The great thing about a blog is that although it is available for everybody far and wide to read, being a small drop in a huge sea of content online means that people are only likely to come across your blog if you tell them about it. It is not uncommon for bloggers to choose not brag about their blog or share it on sites such as Facebook as it is seen as a personal space, written for readers who have similar interests and not for 'friends' to judge.  You know the type - Flossy who always posts about how wonderfully happy she is and having lots of fun, but you worry that if she saw your blog would probably laugh in your face and poke fun.  Believe it or not, Flossy is probably not wonderfully happy and is actually jealous.  However, understandably so choosing not to share your blog with Flossy just avoids that uncomfortableness.

Some bloggers choose not to tell anyone about their blog.  Some bloggers choose to tell everyone.  Some of us just prefer for our readers to come naturally because they like what we blog about and for only our close friends and family to know about it.Close friends and family can actually be your best fans and enjoy talking to you about recent posts (and give you ideas for future ones!)

Whoever you choose to tell (or not tell as the case may be) if you are deciding to start a blog, remember the reason that you are starting it in the first place. It is your little piece of the worldwide web and it is for you to do with it as you please.

Fellow shopaholic bloggers - have you shared your blog with people that you know?
Have you ever had any concerns about sharing your blog with 'friends'?

Love Laurashopaholic xx


Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Bank Holiday Weekend in Pictures

As the Bank Holiday Weekend now seems like a distant memory, I thought I would share with you a few photos from mine.  If you don't already, please follow me on Instagram here.

The Marina, sunset and ducks in Abingdon on the River Thames.

A Homemade lunch buffet, Sunflowers, a Yankee Candle burner, just some of the lovely presents from friends at work.

Hope that you all had a lovely Bank Holiday weekend - what did you get up to?

Don't forget to enter my SheInside giveaway for your chance to win a gorgeous Polka Dot dress.

Love Laurashopaholic xx

Monday, 26 August 2013

Bank Holiday Giveaway!

Hello Fellow Shopaholics!  Hope that you have all had a lovely weekend.  To beat those back to work Bank Holiday blues, I have a great little competition for you to enter.

For your chance to win this gorgeous brand new SheInside Polka Dot Smock Dress as seen in my SheInside review all you have to do is follow these 3 simple steps:

1. Follow Laurashopaholic on Twitter then RT about the Giveaway here

2. Follow Laurashopaholic and +1 on Google+ here

3. Leave a comment below telling me how you would style the dress if you were the winner!

I am really looking forward to hearing how you would style the dress.  The lucky winner will have their photo featured on Laurashopaholic!

Good Luck!

Love Laurashopaholic xx

Entry to the competition ends at midnight on 2/9/13 and one winner will be selected at random.

The winner will be contacted and the dress will be posted free of charge via Royal Mail.

Details of the giveaway winner will be posted on a future post showing the photo of the winner in their chosen style.

Sunday, 25 August 2013

TFNC London Top 5 Dresses

TFNC London is my go to online retailer when I am on the look out for a stunning statement dress.  I have chosen my Top 5 Dresses from their current collection.

1. Paris Sequin Dress £55 in Oxblood
2. Neva Sequin Dress £50 in Navy/Gold
3. Lumie Bodycon Dress £35 in Black
4. Suzanne Lace Bodycon Dress £42 in Black/White
5. Theresa Bodycon Dress £37 in Red/White/Black

The TFNC London range is known for luxe pieces at affordable prices and you may have seen items from the brand in Topshop and Asos.

When looking for a dress for a particular occasion or night out, I always tend to go for items that I will be able to wear again and so the timeless factor is always high on my list of priorities along with luxe quality.  TFNC definitely always ticks the boxes for me.

Have you got any dresses from TFNC?
What are your favourite dresses from their current collection?
What do you think of my selection of Top 5 Dresses?

Love Laurashopaholic xx

Saturday, 24 August 2013

Capsule Wardrobe

Hello Fellow Shopaholics!  My best friend (and my number one blog fan!) set me the challenge of pulling together a capsule wardrobe of 10 pieces that if I could only have these items and nothing else in my wardrobe, these would be what I would have.  It was a tricky task for me and I managed to pick 10 items (plus a belt sneaked in, so technically 11!) from my excessive wardrobe full of clothes.

The Casual Basics
I tried to keep the selection simple and versatile. So firstly I just had to pick my Converse and leather-look leggings to team with three key jersey tops.  I chose a Basic Grey Vest from H&M, an Oversized White Fleck Top from Topshop and a Nautical Stripe Top from M&S.

The Leather Jacket
When putting together my capsule wardrobe, it was a no brainer for me to choose my All Saints Leather Biker Jacket.  I love this jacket as it works to well to thrown on over pretty much any outfit and it is such a high quality, timeless piece. The leather is so soft and just gets better and better the more I wear it.

The Dresses
Picking the dresses was really hard to do, but I eventually chose these three as I think that all of them can be dressed up or down.  I love midi dresses so I included this Strapless Black Bandeau Midi Dress from MissGuided, a Short Sleeve Navy Midi Dress from New Look and then finally my Acid Wash Motel Penny Babydoll dress for something a little shorter and more floaty.

The Heels
Last but not least, my capsule wardrobe would not be complete without my Topshop Tan Heels.  They are perfect to add to any outfit and they are just so comfortable that I could wear them from day to night.

I think that my capsule wardrobe would actually work really well for a weekend away as there are a few outfit combinations for both day and night.  Hope that all of my readers have a lovely bank holiday whatever you are getting up to.

What items would be in your capsule wardrobe?
Are you going away this Bank Holiday weekend?

Love Laurashopaholic xx, click here

Friday, 23 August 2013

Tartan Trend

The tartan print trend is always a classic Autumn favourite and I think it is great styled simply with black to keep it chic.  I do not own anything tartan, so thought I would pull a few ideas together.  I have to say that I am not very confident when it comes to clashing prints so my preference would probably be to add a pop of tartan to a dress such as this Black Fantasy dress from Zara with an accessory such as this umbrella from New Look. I also think that this Tartan Tee from Topshop would look great teamed with this Leather skirt also from Topshop.  The kilt is another easy way to nail this trend and it can be styled so easily with basic tees.

Clockwise from top left:
Oversized Shirt £25 - Glamorous via Asos
 Tartan Tee £30 - Topshop
Leather Skirt £85 - Topshop
Black Fantasy Dress £29.99 - Zara
Knitted Cardigan £45 - Glamorous via Asos
Kilt Skirt £40 - Asos
Enzyme Check Smock Dress £36 - Topshop
Umbrella £7.99 - New Look

How would you wear the tartan trend?
Would you be confident and clash it with another print or would you keep it simple with black?

Love Laurashopaholic xx

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Topshop Wish List

I am in need of a little bit of a splurge in Topshop and these are the items on my wishlist.  I was lusting over this Leather look T-shirt dress when it was first in stock earlier this year.  It then went out of stock and for summer they had a white version which I pondered over until again it went out of stock.  So when this black one returned I knew that I just had to have it.

Now that summer sadly seems to be coming to an end, I have been on the look out for some heeled ankle boots to wear in the Autumn.  I love black and gold so I think that these heeled boots with a gold buckle will do just nicely.

The cami dress is big at the moment and although I already have a couple in my wardrobe, this pink number caught my eye.  I am not sure that I even own anything this pink in my wardrobe, so I am not sure whether or not it will make it past this wishlist.

What items are on your Topshop wish list as Autumn creeps up on us?
Do you think that I should purchase the cami dress in pink?

Happy shopping!

Love Laurashopaholic xx

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Making a House a Home

Moving into a new home is exciting as it is the start of a new adventure. When you start on a new adventure at different times of your life I find that it can often remind you of the amazing people you have around you supporting you.  I thought I would share with you a few home styling ideas, the majority of which were gifts from dear friends.

Having our own home means another excuse for shopping!  I love home styling and making a space truly your own.  It needn't be expensive and you can get some real gems in shops like Home Sense and TK Maxx.  I also love looking in M&S, Next, Ikea and Laura Ashley from time to time, usually to pick up ideas and inspiration.  In fact, Marks & Spencer have a Bank Holiday Home Event starting today giving you 20% off home and 30% off furniture.  The M&S Bank Holiday Home Event lasts until 27th and is available online and in-stores.  I can't wait to have a browse and share with you my top picks in a future post.

Where do you purchase your home accessories from? 
What is on your wishlist from the M&S Bank Holiday Home Event?

Love Laurashopaholic xx

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

SheInside Review

As much as I love the high fashion street brands such as Topshop and Primark, from time to time there is nothing better than searching online and finding new retailers. SheInside is an online store that I have only in the past couple of months stumbled across.  The website is full of an eclectic mix of hidden treasures and is updated with newness daily so I thought I would do a SheInside review for all of you shopaholics. You can also watch my SheInside Review on the Laurashopaholic YouTube Channel, see my most recent SheInside Wish list and my outfit post to show I styled this SheInside Black Crop Top.

I wanted to share with you my favourite pieces from the site that I have been lusting over.  There are so many dresses and tops on the site that initially I was like a child in a sweet shop!  However, if it sounds too good to be true then it usually is, so I thought that as well as sharing my wish list with you I decided I would give the website a try and do a SheInside review of my experience to help my fellow shopaholics...

Design and colour cardigan dress was £21.70 now £11.17
White Long sleeve polka dot blouse was £13.32 now £9.01

I love this Cardigan dress as I think that it would look fabulous thrown over so many different outfits.  The tie dye print means it would make any outfit instantly festival or beach ready.

I am on the look out for a polka dot blouse and I think that this one will be perfect to wear either with leggings or tucked into skirts.

I have already purchased this Beige short sleeve floral straight dress.  See how I styled it on my SheInside Review video.

Polka Dot Smock Dress - SheInside £13.49
This polka dot smock dress was my first purchase from SheInside a couple of weeks ago.  I had read very mixed SheInside reviews and so despite loving many of the products, I was a little unsure about what to expect.  I have to say that I was not disappointed when this little number arrived.  The website offers free worldwide delivery, which I think is very reasonable considering that the prices are really great value.  I was therefore not expecting delivery to be fast.  I think it took a couple of weeks to arrive and when I opened the package I was actually really impressed with the quality of the dress.  As with all white dresses bought online my first worry is always that it will be see-through and this one isn't as it is lined.  There are however, no tags inside the product, so no branding or care labels.  You can see the dress and packaging in my SheInside Review video.

It was only available in one size and I would say that it fits a size 8 and no bigger unfortunately.  Also, it is a little short if you are anything taller than myself only being 5'3 and even I find it a little on the thigh flashing side.

When I emailed SheInside with any query that I had they got back to me within 24 hours and are generally helpful even if their English is not great. The only problem that I have had is everything that I order always tends to go out of stock super quickly so I would definitely recommend buying any items you love as soon as you see them or they will be gone!

If you would like more information and to see the items that I have purchased then don't forget to watch my SheInside Review on YouTube.  'Thumbs up' if you find it useful and subscribe to my channel to keep updated on my latest videos.

Have you purchased anything from SheInside?  If so what was your experience like?
Did you find my SheInside review helpful?
Please add your SheInside review below.
What is on your SheInside Wish List?

Love Laurashopaholic xx

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Sheinside - Your Online Fashion Wardrobe

Monday, 19 August 2013

Laid Back Midi

Hello Fellow Shopaholics!  Hope that you all had a lovely weekend.  Today's post is a casual weekend outfit featuring a Midi Dress that I picked up online from SheInside. Yes it is a midi dress and not a Tee tucked into a chiffon skirt! Although I would have loved for them to be separate as really like both the top and bottom half of this outfit and can think of loads of ways I would wear them both!  I love how casual it feels, yet looks like more effort has been made than actually has (always a bonus!)

I styled this outfit with tan accessories including sandals from Topshop which are my go-to flats when I want a girlie casual, comfy look.

T-Shirt Midi Dress - SheInside £14.36

I think that this particular dress has actually sold out online now, but you can buy a similar one also on the SheInside website here and also in grey/yellow here which is now in the sale for £9.21.

Love Laurashopaholic xx

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Speziale Occasion

Hello Fellow Shopaholics!  On Friday we went to a friends wedding and I have been so excited to share with you the outfit that I wore for the occasion.  The venue and the grounds were absolutely beautiful so took the opportunity to take a few pictures of my outfit.

I wore my Per Una Speziale sequin dress from Marks & Spencer which I fell in love with a few months ago and thought that it would be perfect for the occassion.  I styled it with simple black accessories to keep the outfit chic and formal.  The dress is such fabulous quality and I know that I will be able to wear it in the future.  The thing that I love about Per Una Speziale pieces is that they are limited edition, so there is not much of a possibility of that awkward moment when someone at an event has the same dress on as you! The garments are great quality and definitely have that special touch.

Per Una Speziale Sequin Dress Marks & Spencer £55 (Sale Price)
Thomas Sabo Charm Bracelet

Hope that you like my outfit and how I styled it for the wedding.  How would you wear this Per Una Speziale dress?

Love Laurashopaholic xx

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Surprise in a Box

Hello Fellow Shopaholics!  Today's post is about an online brand I have recently discovered that definitely stands out from the rest.  Love My Apparel (LMA) is an online boutique retailer selling some gorgeous garments and I have to say I have absolutely fallen in love with them.  I was so excited when a parcel arrived from them the other day and the quality of the packaging was truly divine!  It was one of those boxes that just looks too good to open, but as I could not contain my excitement I opened the box and was overwhelmed with the item inside.

Inside was a fabulous CC Skye Baja Malibu Gold Beaded Bracelet which I have fallen in love with.  It has been seen on celebrities such as Jessica Alba and the quality is superb.  I have been wearing my new bracelet so much as it is just so versatile.  I love orange tan coloured leather and gold so this is perfect for my style!  It can be worn with any casual outfit and is also perfect for a more dressed up sophisticated style in the evening.

CC Skye Baja Malibu Beaded Bracelet £92 c/o Love My Apparel
Topshop Denim Dress £38 Tan Sandals Topshop (old)
Today I used my new bracelet to add that extra something to a casual weekend outfit.  I wore my new Topshop Denim dress that I featured in a previous post which you can read here. I think that the denim and orange tan accessories actually work really well together for this look.

I cannot wait to use my new bracelet to add the finishing touch to so many more of my outfits.  As you will know from my outfit posts, I do not wear a huge amount of jewellery as i am really fussy and only like key pieces that are good quality.  The CC Skye Baja Malibu bracelet definitely ticks all the right boxes for me and I am so lucky to have been sent it from Love My Apparel who absolutely know what I like when it comes to style!  Thank you so much!

I would definitely recommend that you visit the LMA site and you will receive a fantastic 10% off your first order using the code LOVE10.  They now have their AW13 collections online which I would be sure to snap up before they are gone.

Happy shopping!

Love Laurashopaholic xx