I Wanna Be EUR’s

16It might be the Brit in me, but I want to talk about the weather! These photos were taken last week when we were hitting around 33° here in Rome.  In the city it somehow feels hotter too, the heat seems to bounce off ancient marble turning the streets into a giant greenhouse.

Not wanting to do anything too strenuous we headed to the EUR district of Rome in the late afternoon for an explore. I wore this beautiful vintage dress (it deserves a more in depth post of its’ own actually – label research in process!) with a DIY cropped T shirt to keeps things casual…and voilà! Throw on the sandals you’ve been living in for the past few weeks and it’s as easy as that! I really rather like it but in truth it was still a little too warm for the blazing sunshine.

3 IMG_0931 12 IMG_0814 1356EUR was commissioned by Mussolini in the 1930’s to celebrate fascism in Italy. As an area designed entirely from scratch rather the usual expansion and redevelopment of cities it feels quite unlike the rest of Rome. Visit the Colosseum for example, and you’ll be impressed its’ the grandness and scale, yet you’re very much aware you’re looking at history, at ancient Rome. Take a trip to EUR and it feels like ancient Rome’s best bits have been revamped for modern eyes.

IMG_0437The district is pleasingly uniform, each building in matching shades of almost white marble or limestone. You’ll see hallmarks of ancient Rome, a stack of columns or a row of arches, in buildings with present day uses. Although I never ventured to this part of Rome before living here, I would recommend spending a few hours taking it in – preferably out of the midday sun!
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A Million Dead End Streets

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Things are changing round these parts! You may have noticed a little bit of painting and decorating going on on the blog, in other words, a new and hopefully improved format. It was starting to look a little tired and dated, but with a little TLC it’s looking perkier and fresher, although it’s very much a work in progress. There’s also some news in the pipeline which should make for some exciting future posts. Watch this space.

I spent yesterday mooching around Oxford and taking in all the (free!) attractions the city has to offer. We saw Dodo’s, dinosaurs and a variety of stuffed animals (which you are invited to touch!) in the Museum of Natural History. I took lots of colourful photos, but for this post I wanted to pare it down and keep the photos consistent too. The sandstone colour palette of Oxford is rather pretty so the technicolor museum snaps are staying under wraps for now. 01
This ASOS jumper has been a staple for me lately. Easy to add layers to depending on the weather and with an interesting side split to keep my fickle attention span happy. A polka dot shirt underneath keeps things fun – sometimes I feel a little boring if I’m not wearing a print of some sort. The boots are from Dune and have been lived in this Winter, a wise investment even if I do say so myself.duneboots Polkadot collarportrait portrait5

Go to bed with wet hair and this is what I end up like, thank heavens for hairdryers eh!
Oxford RailingOxfordBicycle

I only live about an hour away from Oxford so I can’t believe I’d never been before, it’s a beautiful day out. A lot of the museums and university buildings are free to enter, and there’s lots of architecture to see across the city centre. The choice of restaurants and shops is good too, both independent and the usual chains…I can’t think of anything it was missing!White Jumper

A Faithful Old Shoe

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Isn’t it funny how a new item of clothing can reinvigorate your outfit choices, reminding you of some long forgotten gems at the back of the wardrobe?

military coat

red collar

Freshly delivered to my door via eBay, I knew I’d be wearing this vintage red coat at the weekend and planned my outfit around it. Once I’d clapped eyes on the sapphire/navy blue collar, the rest of the outfit presented itself from the depths of my wardrobe. A blue velvet T-shirt which rarely gets an outing these days, black trousers, and some beat up brown shoes. As my friend commented at the time they’re old favourites of mine, with leaky soles and faded toes to prove it.

Vintage coatHeatonex Coat Label

Anyway, back to the star of this post, the coat! Trying it on for the first time I noticed the somewhat cropped sleeves (not the usual fit for a 5’2 woman) and suspected it might have been a kid’s coat. Inspired to do a little digging I looked into the name on the label and found some rather sweet adverts for Heatonex. (I’ve pinned some more here.)

-1950s-uk-childrens-heatonex-the-advertising-archives 3342422684_4371b99154_o 10940602663_7ab43936b7_oHeatona were a Yorkshire clothing company specialising in coats, Heatonex being their girl’s fashion range. It’s definitely a name I’ll look out for when vintage hunting now, the designs are adorable and the quality still great. I wanted to keep the rest of my outfit quite low key, letting the coat be the main focus but I think it’s versatile enough to go with lots of styles and slot into my wardrobe nicely.

Vintage outfitcrest

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Oh, the title of this post comes from an expression which my mum frequently uses to describe the cat!

And Your Bird Can Sing…

Woodland dress

jephson gardens

It’s getting to that time of year when you can start to feel the season changing, with gentle reminders of Autumn nudging you for attention. Getting ready yesterday morning, I was choosing which sandals would go with my Summer dress only to see (and hear) the rain reminding me to be slightly more practical! On went the standard tights and sensible shoes instead.

Thankfully, the shower abated and I took advantage of what I suspect will be one of the last days of Summer with a trip to some nearby Gardens.

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swan print dressI love this swan print dress! It was love at first sight when I spotted it on eBay –  with a cute collar and even cuter print I knew it had to be mine. It’s actually maternity wear which means it’s a bit, ahem… busty for me but I think it’s manageable.

tie waist

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With such changeable weather I covered up with a favourite army shirt of mine. It magically fits into that slot of your wardrobe when it’s too hot for cardigans, and too chilly for bare skin. Being so useful must be why it’s so worn and bobbly but I’m not ready to part with it yet.

railings

NoCycle

yellow flower

wasp flowerIt turns out having your picture taken for blogging is mortifying and hilarious in equal measure. Of course, I’ve edited out the dodgy snaps but I can tell you they come with captions such as; “what’s wrong with your face?”, “yeah, you have got a funny mouth” and “what are you doing with your arms?” Not my words, but those of my trusty friend behind the camera :) So, for balance, please enjoy some pictures from around the park including a rather adventurous squirrel!

grey squirrel

sitting in shelter

swanThe real deal :)

Toxic Threads

Care Label

This week, Greenpeace have released a report detailing the toxic trail of the textile industry in China. I haven’t had chance to read it yet, but the accompanying pictures really put specific faces and stories to sometimes uninspiring facts and figures.  Go take a look.

A quick browse through my wardrobe and I discover that my favourite dress is made in China (and I’m sure countless other garments) so it’s easy to see that we should all be taking an interest in where our clothing comes from. It’s particularly timely as I’ve just written an article for the Bloomtrigger Project about the ecological impacts of cotton production which you can read here.

If you’re interested in finding out more about ethical fashion I’d suggest stopping by this blog, ran by a friend of mine, Katie Ledger. Her enthusiasm for all things green is catching and I must have picked up lots of interesting facts purely by osmosis over the years. She really knows her stuff, why not take a look and be inspired.