Thursday, 14 December 2017

Coco's advent Day 14: Vintage attire...

Hello lovelies!

Today is a little style post from a couple of vintage gigs I've had recently.  I've mentioned on Coco before, but in my normal job I'm a vocal coach and occasional singer (the occasion usually being Christmas!) and at Christmastime, I'm lucky enough to have a bit of a vintage style/jazz/Christmas residency in both Katie's Garden and Serendipity in Sunderland.  It's so lovely to style myself in a way I wouldn't normally dress in every day life, particularly with a Christmas twist as I love Christmas so much!  This year, both of my outfits were what I wore for Katie's Garden as I was in London the weekend I'd normally sing at Serendipity.  I love doing festive gigs as for me, it always feels like the start of Christmas!



On Friday, I went for a full-skirt and petticoat ensemble.  My dress is from Lindy Bop and the petticoats were a gift from a friend.  I always feel so festive in this dress, anything tartan always makes me feel like it's Christmas!  I'm not a fan of heels when I sing, so I paired my dress with my trusty Primark bumblebee shoes; the velvet helped to add to the feeling of Christmas grandeur!

For Sunday's gig however, I went for an alter-neck, figure-hugging number...




I absolutely love this dress and always feel super glamorous wearing it (which I needed on Sunday as I was absolutely full of cold!!!).  Again, I wouldn't normally pair this dress with tights but there was snow so I didn't want to freeze before I'd even got there!

I know lots of people now tend to wear vintage-inspired clothing in their every day lives, but for me it's my singing armour; it's always nice to feel super dressy when I perform!  Paired with a Balmain  lip (it lasts all day that colour!) I felt like a bombshell!  The worst bit is having to take it all off when I got home....if only I could feel super glam every day *sigh*!

Thanks for reading,

Until tomorrow xxx
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Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Coco's advent Day 13: Choosing an outfit for Christmas Day...

Hello lovelies!

Peeking behind door 13 of Coco's advent will see us looking at the subject of what to wear on Christmas Day.  I tend to stay in on Christmas Day (other than maybe walking the dog or occasionally going for a run) so I never really give it much thought, but for those of you going out, there are probably a few things to consider; so here are my top five tips for choosing your Christmas Day outfit!

1 A little bit of sparkle goes a long way!

Sparkle was invented for Christmas time, so make sure you embrace it!  Whether it's choosing a Christmas jumper with a few lights and sequins, a sequinned skirt or simply adding a bit of bling to a little black number, you can't go wrong with a little bit of sparkle over the festive period!  Rule to remember; if everything sparkles, you're probably wearing too much!


This bronze sparkly Marks and Spencer's Archive By Alexa shirt was my favourite from last Christmas!  H & M have lots of festive numbers to choose from this year, just incase you need some inspiration, follow the link to see an amazing silver dress that would be perfect for any festive outing (at time of posting!).

2 Choosing fitted might not be the best option

It's Christmas Day and you're out having a festive Christmas lunch with the family.  There's probably going to be a starter (usually a vegetable soup), Turkey, all the trimmings and Yorkshire puddings for main and then probably a very generous helping of a super filling dessert.  A body-con dress probably isn't the most suitable choice...your stomach is going to grow, make sure it has somewhere to grow to otherwise you could have a wardrobe malfunction on your hands!  My tip; if you still want to do fitted, take a large clutch bag to carry afterwards; it hides a multitude of sins!

Image credit here 

3 Christmas jumpers are cool on Christmas Day

Well actually, cool might not be the right term, maybe acceptable might be better used!  Yes my friends, everyone loves a Christmas jumper on Christmas Day (it's usually my weapon of choice for a stay at home outfit).  They're cosy, cute (or outrageous depending on personal preference) and are great for hiding a food-baby.  Plus, it's the one day of the year where wearing something that fun is totally acceptable without judgement.  I'd maybe stay away from the matching turkey-shaped hat though if you want to look more chic than geek (a cracker hat is where it's at!).



4 Make sure you invest in a good coat

Whatever you choose to wear, I can guarantee if you're in the UK this Christmas, you're definitely going to need a coat!  There are some beautiful dress coats right across the high street this winter (Santa is bringing me a beautiful royal blue one!) in all shapes and sizes so I'd say if you don't already own one, invest in one.  A good coat can add a lot of glamour to an outfit; don't leave home without one!  Mango have some amazing coats this year!  You're welcome!

5 You're only ever a couple of hours away from your pyjamas

You know what it's like, you've eaten all of the food and your pyjamas start calling you from home.  SO, when you get home, just embrace it!  Most of us spend the year working our socks off so if there's a day that you're allowed to be lazy, it's Christmas day!  A good pair of pyjamas are an essential Christmas purchase for Christmas Eve (I'll be doing a separate post about this!) so why not have them as part of your Christmas Day attire too?  And the best part? An elastic waist for all of the Turkey sandwiches you can manage!

Our Christmas Eve attire last year

Thanks for reading,

See you tomorrow,

Kay xx
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Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Coco's advent Day 12: If I could have anything for Christmas this year...

Hello lovelies!

Can you believe that Christmas will be here in less than a fortnight?! Eeeek, so exciting!!

Today I've decided to talk about what I'd really like for Christmas, if money was no object and I could choose anything!  It's just for a bit of fun, I don't want you all thinking I'm a spoilt brat or anything, but we are all guilty of a little retail dreaming now and again!! I have no idea what I'm getting for Christmas this year, so these things are just what I'd ask for if everyone around me was rich (expect to see a few handbags!!!)

A Chanel 2.55....

I know it's a bit of a cliché, but who wouldn't have a black 2.55 of their own if they could?  It's chic, sophisticated and goes with EVERYTHING!  In my head, I imagine myself strutting around Cannes in the summer with one swinging from my arm, or shopping in London next Christmas with it holding my purse and all of my essentials.  Like I said, a girl can dream right?

Image credit here

A Burberry trench coat...

I own so many trench coats; they're my favourite and go with every outfit.  My ultimate fashion aspiration is to own a brand new Burberry trench because they're so chic.  I love Burberry so much and I think the Burberry trench is ageless and timeless, so if anyone has a spare couple of thousand, I've been really good this year!

Image credit here

and whilst we're talking Burberry, I'd also love this scarf...

Image credit here

Cashmere...Burberry nova-check, pretty red hearts...it's perfection!  But at £395 it would take a very generous person to be able to splurge on this as a Christmas gift!

A Gucci bumblebee bag...

Image credit here

I'm pretty sure this bag isn't available anymore, but I still absolutely love, love, love it!  I think it was around £600, which is a bit of a steal in Gucci terms, but in reality it's not very often I have a spare six-hundred lying around!! Even so, it's such a beautiful creation...I think I'll be forever obsessed with bumblebees!

Valentino Rock stud shoes...

Image credit here

I quite fancy a pair of these as a wedding shoe, although I'm undecided on style yet.  They are surely one of the most sort after styles of shoe, and there are millions of dupes on the high street, but there's something about having an original pair that just makes them so much more appealing!  I'm not a massive shoe lover generally, but these are so very beautiful!  Please Mr Claus, help me out!

A Burberry banner bag...

 Image credit here

Still massively desirable (hopefully one day achievable) I love the baby banner bag.  A perfect accessory for every day, but chic and stylish (and you don't see many people carrying Burberry bags!).  Next on my handbag list, forever on my Christmas wish list!


I'm quite lucky really; I live a nice life, I love my job, I've a lovely Mister, a nice family and lovely friends-so all jokes aside, although I aspire for many material things, they don't really matter in the grand scheme of things.  All I really want this Christmas is for everyone that I love to be happy, as cheesy as it may sound!  As far as presents go, I love surprises...but it's nice to aspire to nice things, they may not be under my tree at Christmas but hard work will see them find their way into my life...one day!

What's on your Christmas wish-list?

Until next time,

Kay xxx






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Monday, 11 December 2017

Coco's advent Day 11: Top 5 perfumes to ask for this Christmas...

Hello lovelies!

If you're stuck for present ideas for your favourite lady this year, or you want to ask for something special for yourself, I thought I'd talk about my favourite five perfumes that would be perfect for you or your loved one's stocking this year.  There are some old favourites and some newbies, but whichever one you choose is sure to make you feel a little bit special this Christmas.  So let's peek behind door 11!

1 J'adore, Dior: A real classic

Image from amazon.co.uk

Whether you go with the original J'adore, or the newer version, J'adore L'or, you can't go wrong with this classic.  J'adore had passed me by until I visited the Dior perfume exhibition in Grasse this year and since then I haven't been able to get enough of it.  Christian Dior's passion for flowers is present in this scent, but it's not overly floral, it still manages to be really sophisticated.  Much maturer than Miss Dior, you'll definitely feel as glamorous as Charlize Theron wearing this!
J'adore starts at £52 for 30ml Eau de Parfum, but there are some amazing deals and gift sets available this Christmas if you shop around!


2 Gabrielle, by Chanel: A newbie this year

Image from Chanel.com

There's definitely something special about getting some Chanel in your Christmas stocking.  Gabrielle is the newest offering from Chanel, aimed at the strong, independent woman, just like Chanel was herself.  Not as heady and overpowering as the brand's signature scent No 5, Gabrielle is simply gorgeous! With notes of orange blossom, ylang-ylang, Grasse tuberose and jasmine, Gabrielle is a fresh scent that could be worn everyday, but would still feel special for an evening out.  A perfect encapsulation of femininity.

3 Alexander McQueen; one of my personal favourites

Image taken from Fragrantica.com

McQueen's Eau de Parfum launched earlier this year, and I have to confess it's one of my favourites; it's like wearing a couture scent.  Strong, but not heady, the scent lasts all day so all that's needed is a couple of sprays.  McQueen fragrance is available in Parfum (couture version, really pricey), Eau de Parfum (the perfume I'm talking about here) and Eau Blanche.  If you want to learn more about the perfumes, click here for a breakdown.  The Eau de Parfum has notes of black and pink pepper, cloves and night-blooming flowers; it's sensational, a scent like no other!
McQueen Eau de Parfum starts at £55 for 30ml (but there are currently offers here!)

4 Tiffany: The new fragrance every lady is wishing for this Christmas


Image from Tiffany.co.uk

And by every woman, I mean me too!  Which lady wouldn't wish for a blue box under the tree? I got engaged earlier this year, so I know there won't be THAT kind of blue box, but I'd take this perfume as a second please (Mister if you're reading, take note!).  I'm not going to describe this one, if you haven't had a sniff yet, I urge you to!  I've not yet met anyone that doesn't like it, including my Mister (I've dropped some hints that weren't so subtle!), so if you want to make someone feel really special, make sure the box is blue this year.  AND it's available at most high street stores and everywhere online!

5 My Burberry: Blush, my favourite perfume reimagined

Image Fragrantica.com

Being a Burberry enthusiast, I'd be doing the brand a massive disservice if I didn't include them in my perfume top 5.  My Burberry is my all time favourite perfume, and this is it's lighter more floral sister.  You can definitely smell My Burberry in there, so if you're a fan of the original, you'll definitely love this.  Some high street stores don't stock Burberry scents, but it's always available at Burberry.  For the Burberry enthusiast in your life; it's beautiful.  The scent lasts all day, I promise!


Which scent are you wishing for this Christmas?

Thanks for reading,

Until tomorrow,

Kay xx


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Sunday, 10 December 2017

Coco's advent Day 10: Megan Hess pop-up at Westfield

Hello lovelies!

Sunday is my favourite day of the week; I invite you this Sunday to grab a cup of something hot and curl up on the sofa as we delve behind door 10 of Coco's advent.  Today is just a short post, but I wanted to tell you all about the amazing Megan Hess pop up store at Westfield, London.

I'm a massive fan of fashion illustration, as those of you that have been reading Coco for a while will definitely know!  My favourite fashion illustrators are the Hess sisters (Megan and Kerrie) and Kelly Smith (and the lovely Frances Moffatt, who taught me how to illustrate!).  Megan in particular, manages through her work, to create a dream world of fashion and Chanel that I'd simply love to live in!  Her work is amazing, and I long for the release of each of her books so I can devour pages of her perfect illustrations.  To coincide with her latest release, Paris: Through a Fashion Eye, Megan has launched a pop-up in Westfield Shepherd's Bush, London where you can go and view her beautiful prints.  The pop-up is only going to be around until New Year's Eve though, so if you're going to be in London soon and you love Megan, be sure to visit.  I scheduled a visit into my latest trip to London as this was one little pop-up I didn't want to miss!


Nestled near House of Fraser, and amongst most of the designer brands often featured in her work, the Megan Hess pop-up is bright and beautiful.  Featuring all of my favourites from the new book, it was amazing to see her work up close and personal.





The set up is more like a mini exhibition; there's no-one manning it so you can spend as much time in there as you wish.  I took the opportunity to really study each image, and they're even more beautiful in person than they are in her books.  Being a self-confessed Francophile, the Paris backdrops from this book got me even more excited about Megan's work!


I was sad that I never had the chance to go to Megan's book signing earlier in the year, but visiting her little shop really was a close second; maybe one day I'll get to tell her in person how wonderfully talented I think she is!

Thanks for reading,

Until tomorrow,

Kayleigh x

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Saturday, 9 December 2017

Coco's advent Day 9: London Part 3: Meeting Amy...

Hello lovelies and happy weekend!

So today on Coco's advent, I'm going to be talking about one of my idols.  Being a singer/singing teacher for my big girl job means that throughout my life, much of my fashion influence (and obviously my musical influence) comes from some of the amazing artists we're lucky enough to have in the UK.  One of those artists whose music and style I always loved was Amy Winehouse.  For all she had her troubles, Back to Black and Frank are two of my favourite albums and I truly believe that there'll never be another artist like her, certainly not in my lifetime anyway.  One of my deepest regrets is that I once had tickets to see her at a festival in Manchester, and thinking she'd be on later in the set, we stayed in Manchester and missed her performance.  Sadly now, I'll never get that chance again.  So whilst we were in London, we decided to visit Camden market in search of Amy and we had so much fun!



If you've never visited Camden, its super arty and cool.  The shop fronts are literally coming out to meet you!  The whole place is like one big market, selling the best in vintage goods and the work of talented artisans at one end of the spectrum, to touristy tat and fake designer goods at the other; it's so eclectic, I absolutely love it!



Slap bang in the middle of the market at Camden Lock, stands a life-size statue of Amy.  I knew it was somewhere in Camden, but we seemed to just stumble across her!



Standing next to her, I'd guess she was about my height (if you take away her heels and massive bouffant!) but much, much teenier.  Adorned with festival bracelets, it's clear to see just how much she is still loved.  I think if Amy could have picked anywhere to be, slap bang in the middle of Camden Market would be where she would've chosen, Camden being such an amazing and integral part of her life (she once worked in Camden market and lived in Camden later in her life and was found there when she sadly died).  I know I never got to meet Amy or see her live, but she'll always be a huge musical influence to me and will forever be in my heart.

So the next time you're in London, make sure to add Camden to your list of places to visit, you definitely won't regret it and you never know, you might even pick up a bargain!

Until tomorrow,

Thanks for reading,

Kay xxx
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Friday, 8 December 2017

Coco's advent Day 8: London Part 2: Dolce and Gabbana at Harrods...

Hello lovelies and happy Fri-yay!

Day 8 of Coco's advent is going to be quite a visual one, as I show you Harrods Christmas Window and give a little sneak peek at the Dolce and Gabbana Christmas Market!  Whilst I was still dreaming about being in London, an article appeared on Vogue Daily a few weeks back with the news that this year, Dolce and Gabbana (click the link to see the fun Christmas Gift Guide!) would be taking over the Harrods Christmas window AND opening an Italian Christmas market inside selling D and G goodies!  D&G are Christmas super-fans, so being massive on Christmas myself, I knew that the window this year would be spectacular, and it certainly didn't disappoint!  Imagine a world where Domenico and Stefano have been morphed with the Muppets and they're creating Christmas in their little world, and you're halfway towards the reality of this amazing and magical display.

The Harrods Christmas tree complete with Italian lighting design, stands proudly outside the store















It's fun; all-singing, all-dancing, perfectly festive and completely child-friendly, you'd be mad to miss it if you're in London this Christmas!  The market itself, nestled away on the fourth floor, it's absolutely charming.  Traditional market stalls adorned with D & G t-shirts, clothing, toys and other goodies; you'll almost believe you're at an actual market (even if all of the goodies do come with a hefty price tag; but it is Harrods after all!).  I didn't want to take photos of the market for fear of being removed, but here's one I took from the doorway just to give you a little idea of what's in store for you should you visit, and if you can, I definitely would!


Thanks for reading, what do you think of the Harrods Christmas window?

Until tomorrow,

Kay 

xxx
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Thursday, 7 December 2017

Coco's advent Day 7: London Part 1: Burberry, Selfridges and Karl...

Hello lovelies!

For Day 7 of Coco's advent, I've decided to do a series within a series!  Yes, I recently came back from my annual Christmas trip to London, so I thought I'd share the more fashionable and arty parts of the trip here on Coco!  I hope this helps put you in the festive mood and hopefully might give you some inspiration if you're visiting London before Christmas too and wondering what to get up to whilst you're there!  SPOILER ALERT!  Each of these London posts will feature many of the Christmas windows of the bigger department stores, so if you're visiting and want to wait to see them in person, look away now!

Let's start with Burberry...

I've lost count of the amount of times I've waxed lyrical about how much I love 121 Regent Street, aka Burberry's flagship store, on Coco.  If you scroll through my previous posts, I bet it gets a mention at least ten times!!  If you're a regular reader, you'll remember that I recently visited Thomas's at Burberry for afternoon tea with my bestie and main side-chick, Natalie (here).  We had an amazing time, so much so that I thought I'd take my Mister to start our festive weekend off on a high!  Don't worry, I'm not going to write the same post all over again, but I thought I'd share some photos of our amazing afternoon tea, and a few that I took whilst in the store.



 Some of the cakes were slightly different this time, we got Dundee cake and a tangy tangerine pastry!



 We loved the transparent teapot and Darjeeling tea so much, we hunted one down whist shopping so we can now have our own Darjeeling experience at home!






I'd love to say that the little bag of goodies was for me, but it's a Christmas present! Shhhhh!  Afternoon tea at Burberry is definitely becoming a firm favourite of mine-it's amazing!

 Selfridges Christmas window...

After meeting friends at Winter Wonderland and then ending up having a tipple just around the corner from Selfridges, meant that I got to see the Christmas windows in all of their shining glory whilst heading back for the tube.  A great pearl of wisdom that I can share with you now is, if you want to take photos of any Christmas windows, visit at night!  They're all lit up, you don't have to fight people for space and you get very little reflection from anywhere else interfering with the photos!  I spent ages gazing in all of the windows (I love Visual Merchandising!!) and I even got to tickle Moz the Monster's feet at the John Lewis Christmas window; a wonderful and unexpected surprise!

Selfridges...
















Debenhams...



John Lewis...





 If you're unfamiliar with Moz the Monster, you can watch the advert here

Karl Lagerfeld...

It's been a while since I visited the Karl Lagerfeld store on Regent Street, but decided to pop in whilst I was passing (my Mister was also interested in seeing the menswear).  If you love Chanel and Karl, his own brand still carries the more futuristic side of the Chanel aesthetic but at a way more affordable price.  There were at least twenty things I could've bought whilst I was there, but as I'm trying to watch my spends with Christmas just around the corner, I settled for this funky little phone case which totally appealed to my inner Francophile...

...watch this space for a few mirror selfies featuring this little beauty!

Thanks for reading Day 7 (and Part 1 of my London series!),

Until next time,

Kay 
xxx






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