Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Work It Out: Installment Vingt-deux

Hopefully while you are reading this post I am on holiday in Sunny Spain (I say hopefully because we are flying with the dreaded Easy Jet.. eek!). So this is just a quick little outfit of the day post to tide you over before I am back in misty London town.

It has been really chilly recently, so I am starting to invest in warmer pieces. I saw this dress in a Mango advert on Scarlett Johanson, but was not too impressed with the way it looked on the rail at first. A few days later I dashed out of work and scampered to Regent Street to try it on to be surprised by how flattering the shape was.
Wool dress and belt: Mango.  Leather slingbacks: Burberry.

Any belt detailing is always a hit with me as I feel it creates a better shape for my figure. As much as I would love to wear lovely, floaty shift dresses, with a larger bust and wide hips, they tend to make me look somewhat frumpy, so I love detailing and cinching at the waist.

I have mentioned the sizing issues I have with Mango in a previous post, and once again this purchase was an example. I was surprised to see that all the S and M had sold out in stores, especially when looking at the teeny tiny mannequin and seeing that she (it?) was wearing a medium with no hidden pins in the back (and shockingly it was rather tight). So I opted to try the L, which hung very loose and didn't fit at all. Luckily, they managed to find a M in the stock room, which as you can see fits perfectly... but still I am left feeling quite confused as to what these sizes should be.

Have you spotted any beautiful pieces for Autumn recently? Am I alone in my confusion of the size chart in Mango? I seem to have the whole range in my wardrobe (XS-L)...

Hope you are all having a good week!! xxx

Friday, 24 September 2010

Peace, Love & Juicy Couture

In early September I was kindly invited to Fashion's Night Out to celebrate the launch of Juicy Couture's new fragrance Peace, Love & Juicy Couture in their flagship London store.

I have always been a huge fan of Juicy Couture. Though I never quite understood the 'velour' hype I have purchased quite a few pieces of their more formal wear (even a very cute suit soon to be featured in one of my Work It Out posts) as well as t-shirts and jewelry. I have also loved all their fragrances. In fact, if I had to pick my signature scent it would probably be a tie between Juicy Couture Original and Miss Dior Cherie. Therefore, I was especially excited to try Juicy's new fragrance!
The packaging of this perfume is very similar to the original, though a little bolder with a larger Juicy crest on the front. I also think that the little turquoise bracelet it comes with is a sweet touch. I was very much surprised by the scent as it is very different from all the previous JC fragrances, which are all quintessentially girlie - floral and sweet. Peace, Love and Juicy Couture is still feminine, but a much lighter and fresher fragrance perfect for the Summer (which strikes me as a little strange as it is released in September). I am no perfume expert, but for me the most prevalent notes are the meyer lemon tree blossom, sweet apple accord and jasmine. It wears well on the skin and fades into a slightly warmer scent throughout the day. I have definitely enjoyed wearing it these past few weeks, but I would say that the original JC is still my favourite ;).
The event itself was really fun, and it was great to meet so many lovely beauty bloggers (though I was feeling a little frumpy having come straight from work and slipping off early to bed lol). It was definitely a star studded night!
We met Sophie-Ellis Bexter who was DJing with her husband and manged to get a photo with the gorgeous Pixie Lott!
If you are interested in trying out this new fragrance Peace, Love and Juicy is available from Juicy Couture stores, online here and in Selfridges.
At the end of the night we also popped into Chanel for a few cocktails and to get some snaps in their amazing wind machine equipped photo booths. I wish all passport photos could be as glamorous as these - Chanel accessories and instant air brushing. Which reminds me... I have to dig my passport out soon as I am off to Spain for a week to catch the last Summer rays. I couldn't be more excited and looking forward to a break!!

Honestly when I started my YouTube channel, and subsequently my blog, I never imagined that I would be given the opportunity to attend all these fabulous events. So I just wanted to take a minute to say a massive thank you to you, my readers, for your continuing support as it is all because of you! I really appreciate all the time you take to read my silly little ramblings and express your opinions. Of course events and such are fun, but to me your continued interest in this blog is what means the most. I am truly grateful and thankful for all of you :)! 

Love lots, 

Natalya xxx

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Lipstick Love + casual OOTD

Recently I have been obsessed with a certain little lippie - Yves Saint Laurent Tuxedo Pink (no. 31).
How could I not be? The packaging is absolutely gorgeous, the colour is vibrant, rich and pigmented and the finish is smooth and glossy. Oh and did I mention it also smells delicious?
This has become my 'weekend lipstick'. Keeping the eyes neutral with just a little (a lot) of L'ancome Hypnose mascara I apply this with a stiff synthetic lip brush to keep the edges clean. I then take it down a notch by blotting the excess off. 
As the finish is quite sheer and glossy, while the colour is intense, it also works well on the cheeks. I usually apply and blend this on to the apples of my cheeks with fingers and to ensure it lasts all day set with MUFE HD silica powder.
As my OOTDs have been mostly work related and very formal recently I thought I would throw in a little Saturday casual. With the weather turning chilly and unpredictable I decided to pull out my trusty jeggings and boots combo.
Top: Primark. Jeggings: ASOS. Boots: Faith.

Have you tried YSL rouge pure shine? What are your most loved pieces this autumn? Any lipsticks I should be keeping an eye out for? xxx

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

A Post to Scare the Boyfriend...

Though I may not be in the market for a wedding dress...
I'm not sure how I stumbled on these during my nightly surfing, but now I can't take my eyes off them and just had to share them with you! If I could draw (and sew) these would be the pieces I would aspire to design - classic, feminine, decadent and flattering. These dresses are so beautiful they take my breath away.
All these stunning gowns are designed by Suzanne Neville, who also custom makes outfits for the X-Factor, as seen on Stacey below.
I think I may have found the one.. now let's just hope she is still making bridal gowns in 2090... mmmhhmmm ;). xxx

Contoured Teal Tutorial

I had so many requests to recreate this look from my haircare video so I hope you enjoy this tutorial :) xxx.

Products used:

NARS sheer glow foundation
NARS laguna bronzer
MAC porcelain pink MSF

MAC yoghurt, scene, vanilla e/s
NARS madrague duo (brown side)
MAC reflects teal glitter
ELF glitter liner in stardust*
MUFE nude liner
L'Oreal liquid liner carbon gloss
Sheer cover mascara*
Lash Royalty Luxe lashes

ELF plumping gloss in babydoll*

(Products marked with * were sent to me for review consideration).

Monday, 20 September 2010

Work It Out: Installment Vingt-et-un

Power dressing. From the first glimpse of Balmain on the catwalks I have absolutely loved this trend, and even though big shoulders are now making their way out of fashion they are not departing from my wardrobe as swiftly.
Wool herringbone dress and patent leather belt: Ted Baker. Ballet pumps: Faith.

This dress is one of my favourite recent purchases. I love the structured shape, the flattering double v-neck collar and the delicate side pleating, which softens the silhouette and adds comfort. Every season Ted Baker bring out a few pieces for me to lust after. Their dresses are always beautifully fitted and high quality.

Currently I am eyeing up:
What are your thoughts on power shoulders? Are you still wearing this trend? xxx

Friday, 17 September 2010

Work It Out: Installment Vingt

If you have been reading my outfit posts for a while, you may have noticed that I very rarely wear trousers. Even this weekend when I reluctantly squeezed myself into my Diesels in preparation for the cold weather the bf was shocked. I believe his exact words were "You are wearing jeans! What's the matter?" hehe. It's not that I have anything against trousers, it's just that I can never really find a pair that fit me as well as I would like, so I live in leggings. Low rise trousers, and not being blessed with Britney's pre-baby/ pre-frappuccino stomach, usually leave my hips with bumps I would rather not expose to the world ;).

Despite my fear of what I affectionately call my 'cupcake (rather than muffin) top' this season I have been obsessing over paper-bag/ peg leg trousers, especially the high-waisted ones. They look fantastic on slim hipped girls and athletic figures, accentuating curves and creating a beautiful silhouette. So after lusting after a pair on the catwalks... in the shops... on the streets I decided to give in. If at this point you are wondering if I ever think about anything other than fashion... yes, I think about food too.. therein lies the problem ;).
This whole outfit, now I come to think of it, is from Zara. The trousers and shoes are this season and the puff sleeved shirt is from last season (though they have now brought them out in a few different colours).

The material on these trousers is what made them really stand out. The fabric is very thick, but still soft and has a beautiful paisley(ish) embossed pattern. (Sorry for the rubbish photo).
What do we think of trousers? Am I alone in my futile quest to find a pair that fit (instead of chopping me in half)? Does anyone have any recommendations for longer length, form fitting trousers?

P.S. Please don't say Long Tall Sally ;). xxx

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Work It Out: Installment Dix-Neuf

Mondays call for sensible heels! It's always difficult to drag yourself out of bed on a Monday, so I tend to plan what to wear the night before. There is no better way to beat the morning blues than a new outfit ;).
Dress and belt: Mango. Suede shoes: D&G (notice the sensible chunky heel).

I picked this dress up in Mango this weekend. I actually fell in love with it's cute belt on a different dress (gorgeous camel colour, which is hot this season, but unfortunately clashes with my skin), so when my friend pointed this one out I had to have it ;). I love the simple, clean lines on this dress, as well as the detailing around the shoulders and the simple pleat down the front.

What are your tips for beating the Monday morning blues? I may have done another little spot of shopping this evening to cheer myself up.. but then that's my cure for all ailments ;). xxx

Monday, 13 September 2010

Jones & Payne Hair

A few weeks ago I was invited to the opening of the new Jones & Payne hair salon. Set in trendy Shoreditch this salon specialises in contemporary classic cuts, while the stylists are not afraid to take on some more challenging modern styles for both ladies and gentlemen.
The salon interior is spacious, bright, modern and sleek, while retaining a vintage English style. I love the large, gilded mirrors and the attention to detail, such as the little hooks under the tables to hang your bag.
I also like the fact that the 'washing' area is downstairs, away from the prying eyes of passers by. The leather chairs pictured below also have a built in massage function that really helps you relax!
This salon attracts a huge mix of people, from the 'alternative' kids of Shoreditch to City boys. I even bumped into style King Prince Cassius (Esquire's Best Dressed Man 2010).
I was very excited to return to the salon a few weeks later to have my hair cut by Ricky Lee Jones, the head stylist. Normally 'trendy' salons intimidate me a little as I am very boring when it comes to my hair and (if you have read my blog for a while you may know that) I somewhat dread haircuts. Mostly this is because I have had some traumatising experiences in the past, and because my hair is long I know that many hairdressers are always keen to chop it all off. Needless to say it's always sligtly frightening going to a new salon and I was a little apprehensive.

The salon is open till 8pm, which is perfect for us busy girls, so I managed to pop in straight after work. The moment I walked in I was greeted at reception and offered a drink (bubbly to calm the nerves lol). I then had my consultation with Ricky, who was absolutely lovely. He really put me at ease and listened to my ramblings. I explained to him why I hated my previous cut and, though I wasn't sure exactly what I wanted, together we worked out a slight change to my style, which would work well with my curly hair, while adding some more shape and reducing styling time in the mornings.

So here is my bedraggled post-work before picture.
I was then taken downstairs to have my hair washed and felt perfectly pampered throughout. I was even asked what kind of products I preferred using on my hair and what kind of finish I wanted. We decided to go for a Kerastase deep conditioner, which had a beautiful scent and left my hair feeling very smooth and nourished.

During the cut Ricky talked me through everything he was doing, why he was putting certain layers in and where excess weight needed to be taken off. He was absolutely lovely to chat to and made me feel very comfortable. There is nothing worse than a hairdresser snipping away behind your back so that by the time you realise they have secretly given you a bob it is far too late to do anything about it ;). The whole experience was very enjoyable, the atmosphere was relaxed and professional. The appointments are booked with a full hour for each client, which is a world away from some of the 'conveyor belt' salons such as Toni & Guy, where I have always felt like the stylist was rushing to get my hair done.
So here is my little 'after' picture with the lovely Ricky :). I absolutely loved the results! This is definitely the best haircut I have had in a while. It looks much more sleek, while retaining volume and movement, which is exactly what I wanted.
Now, of course any style can look great straight from the salon and the real test comes a few days later once your hair has had some time to settle into it's new cut. Quite often I have initially liked a new haircut, but after washing and styling it myself sometimes the layers just don't sit right and create strange shapes with my natural curls and texture. However, because Ricky took into account that my hair is wavy (and there is a lot of it) I can happily report that this cut has been easy for me to style myself.

Overall, I had a great experience at Jones & Payne and am happy to recommend this salon if you are looking for a new style, or just want to refresh your look. Prices start at £35 for men and £45 for ladies for a cut and finish. If you are interested in finding out more you can find the Jones & Payne salon website here.
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