Back to School Wish List

Katie and I are delighted to finally collaborate on a post together. If you have been following me on social media you probably know by now that we are the first cousins.  We pretty much grew up in each others houses and have always (well nearly ;)) been the best of friends! Both of us have been obsessed with all things fashion since we were kids, although Katie was always been a complete fashionista my fashion choices at times were nothing short of questionable, but it gives us great entertainment when we look through our old family photo albums!

Katie studied fashion textiles in GMIT. She has interned with both John and Simone Rocha and even attended London Fashion week with them both. Since graduating she has been an artist in residence for mayo coco to commemorate 1916, her most recent residency was with artist Andrea Zittel in the Joshua Tree desert, California. She has exhibited her work in galleries all over Ireland, including the RHA in Dublin and the National Museum of Ireland - Country Life.

As Katie and I are both returning to work and college in September we decided to choose a number of our favourite pieces. I hope you find something that tickles your fancy! And if you too are returning to work or college best of luck!

ORLA'S TOP PICKS FOR RETURNING TO WORK  

KATIE'S TOP PICKS FOR RETURNING TO COLLEGE

New York Looks (Part 2)

Hi everyone!

I hope you all had a great weekend. This is my last post on New York, I promise! It's already beginning to feel like a distant memory! Unfortunately I don't think we will be returning any time soon as Kevin, Clare and baby Lainey are moving home. The upside is we will get to see lots more of them which is great. Who knows...we may do a home exchange with someone in New York in the future!

Below are my 8 remaining looks - if you missed New York Looks (Part 1) click here

I have linked all the looks below. If the garment was no longer in stock I tried to find a similar one where possible.

  1. Willow Blazer, J Crew Striped TopBrandy Melville Shorts
  2. Sandro Jacket, Reiss Silk TeeZara Shorts
  3. Brandy Melville Shorts & Tee 
  4. Comptoir Des Cotonniers Dungarees & J Crew Top 
  5. Zara Dress (sold out)
  6. Citizens of Humanity Jeans & Zara Top 
  7. American Vintage Top & J Crew Culottes (sold out)
  8. Zara Dress (sold out)

If you have any questions about any of the looks, please feel free to ask!

Love Orla x 

10 Tips for Buying a Swimsuit

I love the fact that swimsuits are all the rage this season. I think they are far more flattering than bikinis and there seems to be endless options to suit all shapes and sizes in the shops. Personally, I've been on the prowl for the right swimsuit since last summer so I can safely say my research is done! I was so delighted when one of my favourite swimwear brands Melissa Odabash sent both myself and baby Annie a swimsuit to try. I had been swooning over her swimsuits for years and I swear they didn't dissapoint. The quality of the fabric was far superior to anything you would try on the high street - it almost worked a bit like spanz for holding you in. The fit was fantastic. The leg rise was perfect, high enough to create the illusion of a longer leg yet not overly sexy. The halter-neck fit very comfortably around the neck and the belt sat perfectly at the waist creating an hourglass silhouette. I personally loved the navy colour as I think its a classic and works great with a lot of different skin tones. For me, this swimsuit gets a 10 out of 10 - I can't recommend it highly enough. I know it is a bit of a splurge but for me I genuinely have been looking forever and I've no doubt it will be worn for years. Click here for direct link .

So here's some shopping tips:

  1. Choose quality over quantity, If there is one garment to spend money on its definitely the swimsuit. I compared the quality of a low end retailers to the more expensive brands and lets just say the difference was enormous. Plus if you are anything like me you will be wearing it for years!
  2. Devote time to task: swimsuit shopping can be stressful for the best of shoppers, don't underestimate the challenge ahead.
  3. Try on a variety of styles, prints and colours: go to a store with a large choice of labels and don't be afraid to go outside your comfort zone you might be surprised at what will work for you.
  4. Focus on your assets: If you have a good bust or bottom prioritise these features. 
  5. Go for a high rise leg: This makes everyones legs look lounger and leaner. 
  6. Try a variety of sizes. I found that my size varied dramatically with different brands
  7. Wear a thong when shopping: when trying on swimsuits you are required to wear underwear so having the least visible thong will give you the best picture.
  8. Apply a little bit of fake tan: it not only makes you look slimmer but it also puts you in that summer holidays frame of mind.
  9. Bring a summer sandal; there is nothing worse than trying on a swimsuit with a big clonky shoe. 
  10. Shop online: I usually don't like shopping online but you might be more comfortable buying a number of suits online and trying them on in the comfort of your own home. Ensure you read the return polices so you don't get caught out. 
  11. Try and get a matching Kaftan or accessories that will compliment the swimsuit. 
  12. Consider the purpose of the swimsuit: It is for sunbathing? Or do you plan on doing any water sports? Tan lines and inbuilt support may be an issue! 

Things we did with the Kids in New York City

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.....

  1. The flights ✈️: I could never claim to have the two best eaters or sleepers, but when it comes to flying I've two of the best jet setters you could hope for!! Neither moved from their seats for the entire flight, tbh I don't think they realised they could! And they also slept for at least four hours on each flight. To keep them occupied we brought a few new toys (and covered them in layers of wrapping paper🎁). We also brought new books and downloaded some of their favourite tv shows. Plenty of treats too, I must admit! I'm sure this behaviour was just a once-off,  but let me just brag anyway! 😜
  2. Luggage👜: I try my best to be a minimal packer when I can. The trip was made so much easier by the fact that we didn't have to bring buggies, car-seats, toys, travel cots  and even summer clothes for Annie (thanks Lainey!) as the guys in NY had us sorted - this was obviously a serious advantage. If you're not as fortunate as us I have heard that their are companies that rent baby equipment for the duration of your stay.
  3. Accommodation 🛌: Staying with relatives was a major plus- booking accomodation in Manhattan for 3 weeks wouldn't have even been a consideration! 
  4. Time difference ⏱: The kids adjusted really well to the time difference on the way over. I think by night 3 they were going down at a pretty reasonable NY time.
  5. Local knowledge 🗽:Kevin & Clare have a 16 month old baby girl (hi Lainey!), so they knew all the great parks and things to do for babies in the city. 
  6. New Yorkers love babies 👶🏻: honestly, babies are like celebs, everyone seems to absolutely love babies, especially on the subways where people were so helpful when it came to buggies and flights of stairs. They could not have been nicer.

Bad 

  1. Baby Formula: Annie is on a special high calorific formula due to her weight (she's tiny), so we had to carry 50 bottles with us as it wasn't available in the US. They weighed about 18kg. 😱 Point to note: none of the baby formula was the same as home so it is something to consider. 
  2. Food: Bobby went on hunger strike - he's not a great eater at the best of times but things went from bad to worse on holidays. I've heard since that this is pretty common. I think if this wasn't an issue we would have considered staying even longer (did you notice we extended our trip an extra week🙈😜) Clare pre-made lots of lovely dinners for Annie and Lainey before we arrived so that was an absolute God send for Annie! She even ate more than usual! Clare is Neven Maguire's first cousin and used his baby recipe book so that may have something to do with it! 😂
  3. Sleeping: By the morning, there was usually 4 in the bed! 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦 There was a lot of elbows in faces and feet in mouths! At times my head rested on the bed-side locker! Practice makes perfect with that trick 😛
  4. Nights out: These were limited, but, to be honest we could have gone out way more than we did but we were usually too wrecked. Thankfully we've been to NY seven or so times so we've had our fair share of late nights on the town. Old age is definitely making us boring! 😴😴😴
  5. Weather: The temperatures the first few days was really hot, so we had to limit the outdoor time but thankfully the guys have an indoor playground and swimming pool in their building. Facilities for kids were unreal in that regard. 
  6. Haircuts: For some reason we thought it was a good idea to get Bobbys hair cut in New York! As you can see from the pics, this didn't turn out too well! 🙈😂The NY Yankees baseball cap came in handy!

Things to do with kids in New York City: 

  1. Central Park Playgrounds - with over 21 playgrounds to choose from we were spoilt for choice. We usually went to one on 67th on Central Park West as it was only a few blocks from where we were staying.  
  2. Picnics on Sheeps Meadow in Central Park - it was such a treat to be able to sit out taking in one of the most iconic NY views soaking up the atmosphere & people watching 
  3. National History Museum - great outdoor water park for kids and lots of dinosaurs! 
  4. USS Intrepid - surprised at how much the kids got out of this. Lots of planes and submarines for them to jump on! 
  5. Baby classes on the Upper West Side - there were several classes to choose from. Our kids particularly loved one drop in class that cost $20 (very reasonable for NY 😳) It was ran by a former ballet dancer and a professional singer who provide high energy, super upbeat classes for the little ones. The classes were called Juliet and Ella's play date, they are on Facebook. 
  6. Central Park Zoo - Fun day out, especially if you can catch the sea-lions show. There is also a petting zoo with a separate entrance which can be easy to miss. It's small but the kids enjoyed it.
  7. Play dates at friends apartments - if you're fortunate enough to have friends or family over there you'll get to enjoy the unreal facilities in the apartment blocks.
  8. Museum of Modern Art - Bobby actually enjoyed commenting (loudly) on what exactly he liked and disliked! Annie enjoyed crawling around the open spaces! We lasted around 30 mins before checking out the Children's  Playroom 
  9. Biking in Central Park - Loved this! Great to explore the corners of the park you'd never get to. The helmet for Annie was too big so may be worth buying one to be safe. 
  10. Governors Island - an unexpected treat. We got the 15 minute ferry from Wall St and the wide open green spaces were great for the kids. Super views of the city too. 
  11. Free open air baby classes at Riverside park on the Hudson - Similar to the earlier classes but bigger crowds. Great to watch the kids play and mingle together. Lots of song and dance.
  12. Brooklyn Bridge - great for getting Annie to sleep in the buggy! Bobby loved the views and had plenty of questions about how bridges work! On the Brooklyn side of the bridge you end up in Dumbo. 
  13. Janes Carousal - playground and carousal under one of the most iconic landmarks on the NYC skyline. 
  14. 9/11 Memorial - Lovely playground close to the memorial
  15. Sunset on The Hudson - as we were on the west side it was a great thing to do. Lots of park areas down by the river, a picnic, some ice cream and watch the sun dip behind the New Jersey skyline.
  16. The Lincoln Centre - right beside where we stayed, the Lincoln Centre was another one of the great people watching spots. It was also ideal for the kids to run the legs off themselves before bed!

New York Looks (Part 1)

Hi there,

I hope you are all having a lovely week!

We had an absolutely fantastic time in New York. From the outset I must say we set our expectations very low when planning this trip with the two babies. We weren't sure what way it was going to work out. My brother Kevin, his wife Clare and their baby Lainey have been living in Manhattan the last 2 years so this was really our primary reason for visiting. I had been to the States several times in the past and even once when Bobby was 9 months (and easy) but we felt this could realIy go either way!! We obviously knew it wasn't going to be the same type of trip that we had before, where we had our long lists of restaurants and bars to hit up. Instead we hoped to see how we could get the most out of Manhattan for kids, while soaking in that amazing atmosphere New York has to offer. I will do a much more detailed post on what we got up to real soon, but in the meantime I just wanted to share some of my New York looks with you. You can click on any of the looks and it will link to the website!

Enjoy the sunshine!

Orla x

12 Tips I learnt from the Curl Masters (Devachan)

Dress from Zara 

Dress from Zara 

I was so excited to be invited Devachan hair salon in Soho, New York which specialises in cutting and styling curly hair. They invented the "curly girl method" and have created there own line of award winning styling products. My sister in law introduced me to Deva Curl products over 2 years ago and I have been using them ever since.

Here's what I learned:

1) They cut each curl individually when the hair is dry.
2) They never use shampoo (they compare it to fabric detergent!). They created their own Deva Curl No Poo, which is a sulphate and silicone free cleanser and doesn't lather.
3) We should only shampoo (as in No Poo) the hair once a week but condition with each wash.
4) Adding moisture to the hair is the primary key to creating curls
5) Use cold water for the final rinse, this locks in the moisture and closes the cuticle
6) Use your fingers to detangle your hair after conditioning as bushing it breaks the curl pattern.
7) All the styling products go into the hair soaking wet
8) Lift the hair away from the scalp when adding styling products to help create volume
9) After all the styling products are in, use clips at the roots to create volume
10) Use paper towels to create the curl mound and remove any excess water (always avoid using towels as it takes the moisture out of your hair)
11) When diffusing your hair turn your head upside down and avoid touching it as this breaks the mould created by the styling products
12) Once the hair is completely dry ensure all the product is out by scrunching it out with your own fingers.

I really enjoyed my visit to the Devachan salon. I absolutely loved how they cut my hair and I think it will help create volume and allow me to consider having it longer in the future. In regard to styling I prefer how I do it myself but I've had years of experience dealing with my unpredictable and temperamental Curls!

All and all it was such a positive experience and I look forward to visiting again in the future. 

List and links to the Deva Curl Products I use:

  1. Deva Curl No Poo shampoo
  2. Deva Curl One Condition
  3. Deva Curl Light Defining Gel  
  4. Deva Curl B'leave In
  5. Deva Curl Frizz-Free Volumizing Foam
  6. Deva Curl Mist-Er-Right Curl Refresher
  7. Deva curl Heaven In Hair

MORE PICS ON INSTA STORIES 

How I get my Curls!

Hi all,

I hope you all had a great bank holiday weekend!

The most frequently asked questions that I receive are almost always about my hair. To be honest I find this so flattering as there are times that it just won't behave and can drive me mad!

Finding the right products to suit your type and texture of curl is most important. This can take time, patience and money. Your product choice may also depend on the type of look you hope to achieve. For me, the perfect curly hair day means having lovely spiral curls with plenty of volume at the roots. My hair is actually quite fine, which means I cannot afford to grow it too long or the curls can really drag.

I personally find that curls are quite complex and temperamental. The typical curl scenario is that you'll have the best hair day ever when you have nowhere to go!Finding the right products that work for your curl is a very personal journey that evolves over time. Often what might work for my hair may not work for yours.

That said I really hope that you find this post helpful and have time to give me some feedback about what products you find successful.

Steps
1. Washing My Hair
I only use Deva Curl No Poo(Shampoo) and Deva Curl Conditioner every second or even third time that I wash my hair, as I find it goes quite limp if I use (shampoo and conditioner) product for every wash. My best day for curls is when I just completely soak my hair but don't use products. 

2. Post Hair Wash
Directly after washing my hair I wrap my hair with a 100% cotton cloth (usually just an old t-shirt or a muslin cloth). I don't use a towel as it absorbs too much water out of the hair ad introduces frizz. I find it's better to keep your hair VERRY wet before you put the styling products in.

3. Brushing My Hair
When possible, I try not to brush my hair after washing it. However, when I don't use shampoo and conditioner I have to give it a quick brush as it can get quite knotty. I trend to brush mine directly after washing it.

4. Adding The Styling Products
a. I start by putting 3 squirts of the Deva Curl Miracle Curl Plumper (Texture and Volume) product into my hair. I rub it betweenpalms and apply it generously from root to tip. I think this is great for adding volume and shine.

b. For me, this is the most important stage. I have been using the Umberto Gianni Curl Whip Mousse for years and I think it works best for my curls. I have tried others products throughout the years but I always end up going back to it! I generally use three large handfuls of mousse. I apply it generously at the root and pull it through to the end. Turn your head upside down and scrunch the excess product out using your muslin cloth.

c. Then I use 3 squirts of the Deva Curl Ultra Defining Gel. Rub the gel between palms. Tilt head forward then scrunch gel all over very wet curls.

d. Once the hair is soaked with products (then) turn your head up side down and use the muslin cloth to scrunch up the curls. Again it's important not to use a towel here as I think it absorbs too much of the product and introduces frizz.

5. Pinning My Hair Once you have finished scrunching your curls, it's time to pin it up using the claw clips(these can be purchased in Boots, Penneys, H&M etc). This is an important stage for me as I need plenty of volume as I have fine hair. This isalso handy if you don't fancy scrunch drying your hair straight away. I often repeat this stage after my hair is dry to create even extra volume. When pinning your hair, divide your hair into 8/10 sections and roll the curls into individual sections and pin it to the scalp using the claws.

6. Drying My Hair I use a diffuser dryer called Babybliss. I bought it in Boots pharmacy for about €40 and it seems to do as a good a job as any! I generally put it on full heat and full power. I personally don't like the look of jelly curls (i.e curls wet with product) so it's important to me to fully dry out my hair so there is no look of product left in the hair. While drying my hair my head is usually upside down to introduce volume.

7. After Drying My Hair I often repeat Step 5. using the claw clips to pin up my hair gives it even more volume.

FullSizeRender-6.jpg

General Tips for Curly Hair
1. The claw clips are the best way to achieve a spiral curl and add volume to a curly head.
2. Use the claw clips at night to pin up your curls, sometimes day 2 or even day 3 are even better hair days.
3. Don't use a towel to dry your hair, use a cotton t-shirt or a muslin cloth.
4. Avoid using shampoo and conditioner each time you wash your hair! Unless you have invested in the Deva Curls No Poo.
5. Go to a hairdresser that understands curls! I go to Laura at Raymond Skelton in Galway. I think it's best to cut curly hair when it's dry and curly!
6. Fully dry your hair so there is no evidence of the styling product as to avoid jelly curls!
7. Once a week use the Umberto Gianni intensive conditioning treatment.
8. I currently USE Deva Curl No Poo and Deva Curl Conditioner. But I also found the L'Oreal Elvive colour protect shampoo and conditioner good. Most shampoos contain dehydrating detergents, Deva Curl offer a non-lathering shampoo alternative. Unfortunately it's only available in the US but it is possible to buy online through Sephora.com.

I hope you find this post helpful and have time to give me some feedback about what products you find successful. 

Have a great week, x 

My Top Tips for Buying a Denim Jacket

5 reasons why you should own a Denim Jacket

  1. It is a wardrobe essential. I recommend that all my clients own a denim jacket - there are so many different styles and shapes to suit every age group.
  2. It's a timeless piece - I honestly think I have a had a denim jacket in my wardrobe since I was 5! 
  3. It's trans-seasonal - a denim jacket can be worn in winter for layering over a hoodie or in the summer over your favourite maxi.
  4. It works with so many different looks - the list is endless, I love styling mine with summer dresses or all-white!
  5. Your choice is infinit - practically every label and high street store does their own take on it.

 

 

5 Tips for buying a Denim Jacket

  1. Choose a colour that works well on you - for the paler complexions like my own I wouldn't receommend going too light with the denim. 
  2. Personally I would avoid going too trendy i.e ripped, sequences, pearls, patchwork etc.
  3. Choose a style that suits your shape - the more authentic style is my favourite but it's all about trying out what works best with your shape and style.
  4. Go up one size so you leave enough room for layering knits or hoodies during the winter.
  5. Make it your own - roll up the sleeves, wear the collar slightly up, leave the top and bottom undone! 

 

 

Outfit Details (Top) - Denim Jacket - Maje, White T Shirt - Cos, Skirt - Topshop 

Outfit Details (Left) - Denim Jacket - Maje, Yellow Dress - Maje, Sandals - Carvela 

Weekly Wardrobe Planning

Light Duster Coat from Warehouse (click here), White Jeans from Oasis (click here), Black & White striped top from Warehouse (click here).

Light Duster Coat from Warehouse (click here), White Jeans from Oasis (click here), Black & White striped top from Warehouse (click here).

Just a quick note firstly to thank you so much for reading my blog. I noticed my readership has increased dramatically in the last few months - I'm so flattered you would take the time to visit my site.

As I mentioned yesterday on social media, I returned to my teaching job after a year off so I felt it was prefect timing for this blog post. 

Planning my weekly wardrobe may sound a tad OCD but since having kids, outfit planning is a must for me. Although I only have two kids it seemed to take forever to get out of the house in the morning. i realised we definitely needed to get more organised. Sometimes I wish I was someone that would throw on the handiest thing and run out the door but honestly that never going to be me. Does this make me high maintenance? Perhaps! The outfit planning has worked for so many of my clients, especially those with early starts, big families or with both parents working.  Some clients go as far as to plan the whole families wardrobe on a Sunday evening. I also find the rail really handy for planning our holiday wardrobes. Which I can't wait to do!

Outfit Details: Jacket, Dress and Necklace - Maje, Sandals - Carvel

Outfit Details: Jacket, Dress and Necklace - Maje, Sandals - Carvel

How to plan your weekly wardrobe

  1. I find the best time to do this is on a Sunday night when the babies are in bed
  2. Invest in a mobile clothes rail, the one in the picture is from Ikea and its €7.50, click on this link.
  3. Choose the complete look for each day, including accessories, underwear and footwear 
  4. Sort each look by the day of the week 
22 yellow.jpg

Benefits of Weekly Wardrobe Planning 

  1. Saves an incredible amount of time in the morning 
  2. Minimises the mess created (I can literally turn the house upside down choosing an outfit)
  3. Maximises the use ALL your clothes 
  4. Helps create more put together styled look 
  5. Helps you identify where the gaps are in your wardrobe (i.e what you need to purchase) 
  6. After a few weeks for doing this, clients found that they got a real sense of what worked for them what didn't (i.e re creating the looks that worked etc)

Potential Pitfalls  

  1. Laundry issues (i.e matching top for outfit isn't clean)
  2. Climate change (very rarely an issue in Ireland unfortunately!) 

 

Friday Night Look

Are you ever at a total loss as to what to wear out on a Friday night? You don't want to look overdressed but you certainly want to look like you've made the effort! I find this is a look that my clients often struggle with. I think the Cami/Blazer combo is understated and effortlessly chic. I've gone for all black in this look, but, you could also try contrasting blazers or different colour cami's too. It's a great look with your favourite skinny jeans and a pair of heels. Outfits Details - Blazer - Kooples, Cami - Kooples, Jeans - Guess                  

My Favourite Fashion Bloggers!

This is a post I have been meaning to do for the longest time as I get so much of my inspiration from Fashion Bloggers. I love the fact that there is such a vast selection to choose from, and unlike the magazines, they comes in all different shapes and sizes. I know social media has its pitfalls,  but when looking for fashion inspiration the options are endless. Initially I was guilty of following far too many different people across all platforms, but I read a great piece of advice recently from a girl called @siuners on Instagram where she talked about "digital clear-outs" - basically unfollowing accounts you don't engage with - and that's exactly what I did (In turn, greatly decreasing the amount of time spent on social media)! I love when my followers engage with me, as it gives me an idea of the type of content you enjoy and what styles work - I must add a kicker to say that my favourite bloggers  are constantly changing, so I promise to update it regularly! 

Cos Wardrobe Essentials

There is so much I love about COS - its price point, the variety of styles, its minimalistic approach to trends, and most of all - its quality! So many of my clients have had great success in shopping in COS, although some may have been initially apprehensive given the brand has quite a Scandinavian edge! As you are probably aware by now I'm a big believer in Wardrobe Essentials. These obviously vary from person to person, but I decided to share a few pieces in COS that worked for a variety of clients.  

A-Line Milano Knit Jumper This is my go-to jumper at the moment. I love having to easy to wear looks that are both smart ad casual and I think this fits the brief perfectly! I call it my chill-out knit . I love pairing it with blue skinny jeans. It also works well with white jeans.  

A-Line Milano Knit Jumper

This is my go-to jumper at the moment. I love having to easy to wear looks that are both smart ad casual and I think this fits the brief perfectly! I call it my chill-out knit . I love pairing it with blue skinny jeans. It also works well with white jeans.  

Slim Fit Trousers These trousers have worked well on so many of my clients. I love the quality of the fabric and the fact that they are high-waisted so they really hold you in in all the right places. They are a pretty tight fit - I would definitely suggest going up at least one size. The leg length is pretty long; I would recommend turning them up. They come in both navy and black and each season they introduce new colours. I love the way they are styled in this image. Nailing a simple black look is key for every wardrobe! 

Slim Fit Trousers

These trousers have worked well on so many of my clients. I love the quality of the fabric and the fact that they are high-waisted so they really hold you in in all the right places. They are a pretty tight fit - I would definitely suggest going up at least one size. The leg length is pretty long; I would recommend turning them up. They come in both navy and black and each season they introduce new colours. I love the way they are styled in this image. Nailing a simple black look is key for every wardrobe! 

White Shirt One of the most common questions I get asked is "where can I get a good white shirt"? Obviously, the answer depends greatly on the clients shape, style and budget! But for me personally I am finding it hard to upstage this one from COS. I love the textured detail on the collar and the panel at the bottom. It also works well for layering underneath jumpers. 

White Shirt

One of the most common questions I get asked is "where can I get a good white shirt"? Obviously, the answer depends greatly on the clients shape, style and budget! But for me personally I am finding it hard to upstage this one from COS. I love the textured detail on the collar and the panel at the bottom. It also works well for layering underneath jumpers. 

Cotton Silk Knits These knits (both grey and navy) are such a good buy. At €69 each is impossible to find another label that can compete on quality and fit. They work with so much. It looks great layered with a white shirt but it also looks great on its own. It can be worn tucked in to high waisted trousers or skirts. It can also just be worn casually with jeans. I would recommend going down a size. I'm size XS in it.  

Cotton Silk Knits

These knits (both grey and navy) are such a good buy. At €69 each is impossible to find another label that can compete on quality and fit. They work with so much. It looks great layered with a white shirt but it also looks great on its own. It can be worn tucked in to high waisted trousers or skirts. It can also just be worn casually with jeans. I would recommend going down a size. I'm size XS in it.  

Tan Belt I spent what seemed like forever trying to find the perfect tan leather belt - until I came across this one! I think the colour, style and the gold buckle are perfect for pairing with any pair of jeans. The good news is its only €29.

Tan Belt

I spent what seemed like forever trying to find the perfect tan leather belt - until I came across this one! I think the colour, style and the gold buckle are perfect for pairing with any pair of jeans. The good news is its only €29.

My Go To Places in Galway

I feel very fortunate to call Galway my home! I don't think I have ever met somebody who doesn't love the place.  I moved to Galway in 1999 to start college and loved it pretty much from the word go. Although I have lived in both Dubai and Dublin for periods, I always felt my heart was in Galway! Over the years the food scene has improved enormously so much so we are spoiled for choice. I hope you find this helpful?

I will be doing a completely separate post on shopping in Galway soon. Let me know if you have any questions!

Favourite restaurants  - Kai & Ard Bia hands down!  Drinks - Tribeton, Universal  Pizza - Dough Bros  Lunch on the Go - Mc Cambridge's  Sushi - Kappa Ya  Coffee - CoffeeWerk & Press, Urban Grind  Hotel - The G  Wine & Chesse Board - Sheridans

Favourite restaurants  - Kai & Ard Bia hands down! 

Drinks - Tribeton, Universal 

Pizza - Dough Bros 

Lunch on the Go - Mc Cambridge's 

Sushi - Kappa Ya 

Coffee - CoffeeWerk & Press, Urban Grind 

Hotel - The G 

Wine & Chesse Board - Sheridans

Nails -  Shelley’s Beauticians Lashes - LashLuv By M  Hair - Laura at Raymond Skelton  Make Up Artist - Aisling K  Spray Tan - Sara Duffy 

Nails -  Shelley’s Beauticians

Lashes - LashLuv By M 

Hair - Laura at Raymond Skelton 

Make Up Artist - Aisling K 

Spray Tan - Sara Duffy 

Favourite Clothes Shops - Willow, Les Jemelles and Brown Thomas More detailed shopping post coming soon! 

Favourite Clothes Shops - Willow, Les Jemelles and Brown Thomas

More detailed shopping post coming soon! 

My Spring/Summer 2017 Shopping Wish List!

Embroidery Dress  This was actually the first SS piece I bought. If you have been following me you probably know I'm not really a fan of patterns or flowers - on clothes at least! So I really went outside my comfort zone when I bought this piece. Although the dress could definitely pass for a maternity dress I still love it. I couldn't believe the quality for Zara. A silk dress for €60 is a pretty unbelievable steal, right? Click here for link!

Embroidery Dress 

This was actually the first SS piece I bought. If you have been following me you probably know I'm not really a fan of patterns or flowers - on clothes at least! So I really went outside my comfort zone when I bought this piece. Although the dress could definitely pass for a maternity dress I still love it. I couldn't believe the quality for Zara. A silk dress for €60 is a pretty unbelievable steal, right? Click here for link!

Denim Cut Off's A garment that I mostly avoid as I really think they are hard to pull off unless you are a Scandinavian 6ft model. But I do love the idea of wearing them with my rust coloured blazer from Willow. I think these high waisted ones from Zara are a nice shape but I'm also going to up a size. Click here for link.  

Denim Cut Off's

A garment that I mostly avoid as I really think they are hard to pull off unless you are a Scandinavian 6ft model. But I do love the idea of wearing them with my rust coloured blazer from Willow. I think these high waisted ones from Zara are a nice shape but I'm also going to up a size. Click here for link.  

White Sandals  White footwear is one of those things that I know may be considered a bit naff, but I like them anyway! They are such a handy essential because they work with so many different looks. I particuarily like these ones from Cos. I always stay away from straps around the ankles for fear of cankles! Click here for link. 

White Sandals 

White footwear is one of those things that I know may be considered a bit naff, but I like them anyway! They are such a handy essential because they work with so many different looks. I particuarily like these ones from Cos. I always stay away from straps around the ankles for fear of cankles! Click here for link. 

White Tee This is definitely a wardrobe essential for SS whether it's a round neck or a v neck everyone needs a good white tee. Almost every label will have their own version of the white tee. I chose an Acne tee as the quality and shape are just perfect for me. Alexander Wang, Marks & Spencers and Oasis are also favourites. They are perfect with pretty much everything. The most important thing for a white tee, is that it remains super white. Click here for link.  http://lesjumelles.ie/

White Tee

This is definitely a wardrobe essential for SS whether it's a round neck or a v neck everyone needs a good white tee. Almost every label will have their own version of the white tee. I chose an Acne tee as the quality and shape are just perfect for me. Alexander Wang, Marks & Spencers and Oasis are also favourites. They are perfect with pretty much everything. The most important thing for a white tee, is that it remains super white. Click here for link. 

http://lesjumelles.ie/

Hot Pink Pants  When I was shopping with a client last week we came across these trousers in Zara and she commented that they were so me - which was very true! Sometimes I can't help including some of my personal preferences in a pre-shop. The client wasn't comfortable in them as she felt it highlighted her tiny (I couldnt see it) tummy. I plan on styling them with a denim jacket, white tee and white converse. Click here for link. 

Hot Pink Pants 

When I was shopping with a client last week we came across these trousers in Zara and she commented that they were so me - which was very true! Sometimes I can't help including some of my personal preferences in a pre-shop. The client wasn't comfortable in them as she felt it highlighted her tiny (I couldnt see it) tummy. I plan on styling them with a denim jacket, white tee and white converse. Click here for link. 

Denim Jacket I bought my last denim jacket in Mango well over 10 years ago so it certainly needs to be updated! I've been on the hunt for some time and finally found the perfect one in Maje (above)! A few of my clients have already purchased it and love it. I think its a definite wardrobe essential for Spring Summer. I love to team it with a white tee and coloured jeans or trousers. It also looks great with white dresses and even maxi dresses. I think its important to get the right fit to suit your shape and style, so try on as many as you can. It's actually something you may not even have to spend crazy money on (my sister got her ones in Penney's). Personally, I also love the oversized denim jackets too, but is not a shape that works on everyone. I'm really tempted to get one in the high street as I love the with shorter dresses. Click here to see the Topshop version. 

Denim Jacket

I bought my last denim jacket in Mango well over 10 years ago so it certainly needs to be updated! I've been on the hunt for some time and finally found the perfect one in Maje (above)! A few of my clients have already purchased it and love it. I think its a definite wardrobe essential for Spring Summer. I love to team it with a white tee and coloured jeans or trousers. It also looks great with white dresses and even maxi dresses. I think its important to get the right fit to suit your shape and style, so try on as many as you can. It's actually something you may not even have to spend crazy money on (my sister got her ones in Penney's). Personally, I also love the oversized denim jackets too, but is not a shape that works on everyone. I'm really tempted to get one in the high street as I love the with shorter dresses. Click here to see the Topshop version. 

Off the Shoulder This particular top worked so well on a number of my clients which, were all different shapes. I think it worked because of the long sleeves and the vertical stripes. It looked cute with white and blue jeans. I plan on styling it with a short white denim skirt and flat white sandals. Click here for link.

Off the Shoulder

This particular top worked so well on a number of my clients which, were all different shapes. I think it worked because of the long sleeves and the vertical stripes. It looked cute with white and blue jeans. I plan on styling it with a short white denim skirt and flat white sandals. Click here for link.

Shirt Dresses  There are two types of prints I like; stripes and polka dots! I love the style of shirt-dresses. I get that the oversized fit mightn't work for everyone! I think this will look great with a leather jacket! I really wish this was a cotton dress but its 100% polyester which is the only drawback. Click here for link. 

Shirt Dresses 

There are two types of prints I like; stripes and polka dots! I love the style of shirt-dresses. I get that the oversized fit mightn't work for everyone! I think this will look great with a leather jacket! I really wish this was a cotton dress but its 100% polyester which is the only drawback. Click here for link. 

White Dresses I love white dresses in the sumer. I think they are the perfect way to show off a tan (even a fake one). I love these particluar style from Rococo, click here. I think this shape would work on many different body types. I love the detail on the sleeve and shorter skirt inside. I think it would be fab with tan accessories and a denim jacket. 

White Dresses

I love white dresses in the sumer. I think they are the perfect way to show off a tan (even a fake one). I love these particluar style from Rococo, click here. I think this shape would work on many different body types. I love the detail on the sleeve and shorter skirt inside. I think it would be fab with tan accessories and a denim jacket. 

Ruffle Sleeve I had to give into the ruffle sleeve trend when I saw this dress as it has two of my favourite things - sleeves and stripes! Plus it's 97% cotton which is perfect for the really hot weather. I'm going to keep it simple and style it with white flat sandals. Click here for link. 

Ruffle Sleeve

I had to give into the ruffle sleeve trend when I saw this dress as it has two of my favourite things - sleeves and stripes! Plus it's 97% cotton which is perfect for the really hot weather. I'm going to keep it simple and style it with white flat sandals. Click here for link. 

Yellow Dress Yellow is one of the most on-trend colours of the season. This dress has a neckline I would never normally go for as I think its really unflattering on most people. It usually makes their arms look bigger than they actually are and if you have a big bust it's double trouble. So why do I want it? I saw these fab yellow dress in Maje (click here) and I tired it on with the perfect denim jacket and I just loved the look -but the price was too much, so this is an affordable alternative! A client recently bought both the Maje yellow dress and the Maje denim jacket and it was sooo nice. I had major client wardrobe envy. Click here for link.

Yellow Dress

Yellow is one of the most on-trend colours of the season. This dress has a neckline I would never normally go for as I think its really unflattering on most people. It usually makes their arms look bigger than they actually are and if you have a big bust it's double trouble. So why do I want it? I saw these fab yellow dress in Maje (click here) and I tired it on with the perfect denim jacket and I just loved the look -but the price was too much, so this is an affordable alternative! A client recently bought both the Maje yellow dress and the Maje denim jacket and it was sooo nice. I had major client wardrobe envy. Click here for link.

White Jeans An ill-fitting pair of white jeans could almost be considered a fashion crime! Honestly, from experience this is one of the hardest things to nail especially when they are skinny jeans and show every lump and bump. I love this high waisted straight leg style, I think its a prefect way to move away from the skinny and to try something a little different. Isn't it funny how Jeans trends really go full circle! Click here for link.  http://lesjumelles.ie/

White Jeans

An ill-fitting pair of white jeans could almost be considered a fashion crime! Honestly, from experience this is one of the hardest things to nail especially when they are skinny jeans and show every lump and bump. I love this high waisted straight leg style, I think its a prefect way to move away from the skinny and to try something a little different. Isn't it funny how Jeans trends really go full circle! Click here for link. 

http://lesjumelles.ie/

 

 

St Patricks Day Look!

Happy St Patrick Day! For the week that's in it I wanted to include a little bit of green in my look, so I was delighted when I came across these culottes in Cos.

I know they are not everybody's cup of tea, but I love culottes! They are really on trend at the moment, so most of the high-street shops have a good selection to choose from. I think they can be pretty versatile if you get the right pair to suit your shape. I bought these culottes in Cos for €79 - they are part of their new collection so they were only available in their Flagship store in Dublin. I love the colour (coincidentally perfect for St Patricks day!). I also love the structured shape - I think some of the more flowy shapes look more like a midi-skirt than culottes. The only drawback to this pair is they crease so easily, which is a major bummer!

A few tips for buying culottes;

  • If you are shorter in height I would recommend going for a narrower leg 
  • Wearing a heel is also more complementary, especially if you feel you want to disguise some weight
  • Opt for a more structured fabric that will show off the shape of culottes
  • Avoid tucking in -  I found when I tucked inside it wasn't very flattering around the tummy section (see picture !!!)
  • Try and find a pair with a centre-pleat - it gives a more tailored, dressy look 
  • Personally I would avoid patterns as a block colour is more versatile and won't date as quickly
Look 1 = Grey Jumper from Cos, White shirt from cos, Culottes from Cos, Shoes from Topshop  Look 2 = Navy Bomber from Topshop, Stripped Top from Cos, Shoes from Zara, Sunglasses from Prada   Look 3 = White Shirt from Cos, Culottes from Cos, Shoes from Topshop, Sunglasses from Prada 

Look 1 = Grey Jumper from Cos, White shirt from cos, Culottes from Cos, Shoes from Topshop 

Look 2 = Navy Bomber from Topshop, Stripped Top from Cos, Shoes from Zara, Sunglasses from Prada  

Look 3 = White Shirt from Cos, Culottes from Cos, Shoes from Topshop, Sunglasses from Prada 

Suits!

Hi everyone!

I hope you all had a great weekend!

I have always been a big lover of suits. To me, a perfectly tailored suit can make you feel both feminine and powerful. Worn the right way, it can make a bold and striking statement.  The first ever suit I invested in was a Maje number which I absolutely adored – so much so that I am constantly on the lookout for something similar. Recently I came across a gorgeous Sandro blue suit that I knew was a must-have! We christened our daughter Annie just after Christmas so it was the perfect excuse for a purchase. The versatility of the suit is something we can all underestimate: I have a number of events in the coming months and I know this suit will be perfect for this type of occasion, just as much as a social one. I love the idea of wearing a suit as an alternative to “dressing up”. I find it such an adaptable, flexible piece as it can obviously be broken up and worn as separates too, which will obviously give it much more wearing potential (remember my #30wears rule!).  There are so many great options in the shops at the moment. I have selected three of my favourites below. Click on any of the images to for more details. 

Grey Frill Sweater from Warehouse, Jeans from Zara, Suit from Sandro 

Grey Frill Sweater from Warehouse, Jeans from Zara, Suit from Sandro 

Above are my three favorite ways to wear my new suit. I love the fact that this particular suit is so versatile - I think the colour and fabric really allows it to be worn casually. I obviously love wearing the whole look together but I feel it’s just as good with trainers and jeans, or even with the grey sweater. I know this suit is going to definitely justify its Cost Per Wear

Have a great week!

Wardrobe Essentials - The Camel Coat

Camel Coat from Jaeger (click here) Jeans from Zara, Polo from Bloomingdales (click here)

Camel Coat from Jaeger (click here) Jeans from Zara, Polo from Bloomingdales (click here)

Click here to see original blog post with outfit details  

Click here to see original blog post with outfit details  

I started looking back over my old blog posts (morto!!!) and realised my first ever outfit post included a camel coat (click here for pics!). It was one of my first purchases from Kooples and I can safely say it well surpassed my 30 Wears rule! I sometimes think I could change that rule to 300 wears - honestly, if I like something I wear it non stop!!!  I also posted the outfit below and I was delighted when the image was shared on Vogue Online Street Style

Why should I buy a Camel Coat?

  1. The Camel Coat is an absolute wardrobe essential, it works for almost any occasion  
  2. It is a timeless and classic piece that will never go out of fashion 
  3. It can be styled so many different ways, you will wonder how you survived without it
  4. There are so many different options available you are guaranteed to find a price, colour and style to suit you 

 

Tips for buying a Camel Coat?

  1. Decide on a budget first: If you are going high-end then Max Mara, Theory and Joseph have the dream camel coat situation - they are tailored to perfection. For something mid-range Sandro, Jaeger, Ted Baker and Kooples produce a timeless classics that will see you through a number of seasons. For a high-street version, I would go to Cos, Topshop or Mango - they have great copies. but the lining and the general quality may have you drooling over the mid or high range when you do a comparison. I would suggest doing a cost-per-wear with this item as it may justify investing more
  2. Choose the right shade: If you are as pale as I am it is very important to pick the correct shade - I spent forever trying to find the correct hue for my skin tone. There are so many different variations of camel you really need to try them on to see what works best for you, so, I therefore wouldn't suggest buying it online. I must add that although I found a shade that I think works best with my skin I often tend to wear the coat either with a high neck (polo or shirt buttoned up) or a scarf around my neck so the colour isn't directly on my skin (#palegirlproblems!)
  3. Choose a style that works for you: The mid-length belted version is bone fide classic  and can really show off your waist which is perfect for the hour glass shape. Max Mara and Jaeger have really belted camel coats. If you are tall and/or thin and you are looking for something more on trend, the oversized double breasted or duster coats could be great, but, I would stick to the high-street for these on-trend looks as they are more seasonal. If you have a little bit of weight around the middle section (pear shape), I would stick to the Boyfriend style with minimum detail and fuss. This is also more of a classic style that won't go out of date any time soon.
  4. Check the lining! Have you noticed a lot of the coats at the moment aren't lined? I'm unsure if this is a trend or a cost cutting mechanism, but I don't like it. If you are investing in a coat you at least want it to be lined!

Happy shopping guys!

O x

 

Insiders Secrets Event

Hi everyone!

I hope you all had a lovely weekend. You may have seen from my social media that Im going to be involved in upcoming events with interior design company House Edit (see press release below)This is a wonderful opportunity to collaborate with such a wonderfully creative team! I love the concept of this event as I feel fashion and interior design are intrinsically linked. Many of the trends we see on our runways are quickly reflected in interior design, and vice versa. I am very excited to work with all the people involved. The team at House Edit have such an amazing website and a wealth of knowledge when it comes to all things interior - I cant wait to hear them share all their trade secrets. Many of you may already follow Roisin Raffterty on social media and so will be aware of her amazing work. I just want to hand over the keys to my dream house and let her make those dreams a realityI would love to hear if you are coming to the event - please let me know and I will look forward to seeing you on the day.

INSIDERS SECRETS  
The Interiors & Style Event of the Year 

House Edit INSIDERS SECRETS in association with Fleetwood Prestige

Want to inject life and personality into your home? Want to nail that colour scheme? Don't know where to source cool, affordable, stylish homewares & accessories? Want to know more about the fusion of fashion & interiors? In need of some expert advice? ... then INSIDERS SECRETSis the event for you.

Join House Edit’s Interiors Insiders, alongside Interior Architect, Roisin Lafferty & Fashion Stylist, Orla Sheridan, for Masterclasses in all things Colour, Styling, Accessorising, Sourcing, plus much more...
We have three dates announced throughout March & April:
Dublin 01.04.17, Galway 25.03.17 & Sligo 11.03.17.

Tickets from Eventbrite available here.

Above:
House Edit Interiors Insiders, Elaine Regan & Claire Price, joined by Interior Architect, Roisin Lafferty of Kingston Lafferty Design.
Below:
Personal Stylist, Orla Sheridan

What to expect from INSIDERS SECRETS masterclass:

The intimate round table events guarantee to be fun-filled, insightful and hands-on; encouraging, inspiring and instilling confidence, where you will walk away with tangible ideas & colour schemes ready to implement. Attendees are not only guaranteed a fun day out which answers your specific interior, design and personal style questions, you will also walk away with goodies bags, spot prizes and exclusive sourcing guides.
 
Insiders Secrets is all about taking the chore out of home renovations and making it fun, accessible and exciting. These informative, enjoyable and stylish days out will bring the best of interiors & style together – from designers, stylists, well-known brands, to colour experts...

For the Interiors / Style fanatic, the perfect Girls day out, Valentines / Mothers Day / Birthday present, an event like no other...

Tickets from Eventbrite available here.

Deva Curl Hair Products Review

Hi everybody!

IMG_4379.JPG

Today, I am going to review some hair products that i have been excited about getting my hands on for some time. I first came across them through my sister-in-law, Clare (@irishcurlinnewyork), who is currently living in New York. I call her the 'Curl Queen' as she literally knows everything there is to know about curls! When she started raving about these products, I knew I had to buy them. Unfortunately, I was unable to purchase them online at the time, so thankfully Clare got them for me for Christmas! For the purpose of doing this blog I contacted Deva Curl directly and they have assured me they can be purchased at Nordstorm or Sephora (click on links), who both deliver to Ireland.

Below is a quick summary of the products I used, in the order i used them:

  1. Deva Curl No Poo Shampoo - I loved this product, but it took a little getting used to as it doesn't lather (as the name suggests) and so feels more like a conditioner.Apparently most shampoos are not paragon, sulphate or silicone free and are basically like putting fabric detergent in your hair. Curly hair is so dry that shampoo will negatively affect your natural curl as it dries it even more.  The only issue I have with this type of shampoo (or No Poo) is after continuous use (together with the hard-water issue in Galway), my hair occasionally needed something a little stronger. *Note: Deva Curl has just launched a new product called Build Up Buster, which will definitely be on my shopping list. 
  2. Deva Curl One Condition Original - Daily Cream Conditioner: This is an excellent product that adds moisture to your hair. I love the fact that you can use it everyday. It feels super-light on your hair and doesn't add any weight. 
  3. Deva Curl B'Leave-in - Miracle Curl Plumper : Despite the name this is not a leave in conditioner. I really liked this product - my hair is naturally fine so any product that can add volume is a win for me. My hair can be quite flat at the roots and this gave it a real lift. 
  4. Deva Curl Ultra Defining Gel - Initially, I didn't love this product. It felt quite sticky and I worried my hair would have that Jelly Curl look which I hate! Thankfully, the results were very positive! I think the important trick with this product is to ensure that your hair is soaking wet when applying it and ensure that you use enough to completely cover your hair, then scrunch your curls using a cotton cloth to remove any excess water or gel. If you do notice that your hair still feels sticky after drying it I could recommend use the cotton cloth (or curl towel) to scrunch it soft. 
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I am happy to report I am totally sold on these products! I love the fact there are no harsh chemicals in Deva Curl, and they have a huge range to suits lots of different hair types. They also sell kits which are great starter pack of their best selling products. Looking at their range online I am excited to try their Mist-er Right Dream Curl Refresher and their Frizz Ease Volumizing Foam. That's it guys! I hope you found this review helpful? Let me know if you have tried these products and what you thought

Top tips for buying a Leather Jacket

leather jackets .jpg

Over the years I have helped so many of my clients buy leather jackets and I must admit it is definitely one of those garments that require some time to get it right. As it is probably one of the more expensive garments that you will invest in I think it requires plenty of research before you make your decision. I would recommend that you spend time trying many different styles and brands so you can choose the jacket that is perfect for you!

Here is a list of a few things to consider if you are buying a leather jacket:

1.     Stick to the more classic style, personally, the Biker style jacket is my favourite

2.     Choose a good quality leatherwhile real leather isn't cheap, investing in it is the best way to ensure that it will stand the test of time. Faux leather can have an overly smoothplastic feel

3.     Select a comfortable fit; a good jacket should feel like a second skin. I recommend you choose a fitted look while also leaving enough room for a sweater

4.     Stick to a classic colour like black or tanavoid going for alternative colours that may date

5.     Check the lining to ensure it's breathable and fits well; this is often the first thing to go in cheaper quality jackets

6.     Check the stitching, a good quality jacket will be stitched using a strong thread

Best of look shopping. Hope you found the tips helpful. 

Have a lovely weekend. x