So, this is the last of my reflective posts, looking back at the past year of blogging and how I plan to move forwards.


And so, thinking about my wardrobe, I feel like I’ve moved forwards quite a lot…

What’s missing though are some rather boring, but much needed basics: regular long sleeve and short sleeve tees  (preferably plain, or striped); crew neck knits, and I really, really need to have a sort out of my sock & undies drawer… which will no doubt lead to a rather large clear out as well as a rather large expense… why do undies cost so much?!

There will always be new clothes and so of course I will constantly be wanting ‘new’: like most of us… try as I might to go ‘minimal’ with all things in life, I’m clearly not a minimalist at heart!

Today I’m going to try my utmost to keep it brief and talk about 3 things: small town dressing, the imminent updates to this blog and a couple of recent purchases which seem to have become my signature style.

Small Town Dressing:

As I was drafting this post yesterday, I couldn’t quite find the words for this bit… so, as ever, at times of ‘bloggers block’ I had a quick scroll through Instagram and something caught my eye.

I follow the uber cool Garance Doré (who doesn’t?) who is of course, to die for stylish (French of course!), a photographer and a NY Times best selling author.  She has recently upped sticks and moved from New York to L.A..


More than the photo she’d posted, it was the caption which grabbed my attention:

“How does moving to a different (and sunny) place change you?…”

I promptly clicked on the link in her bio to her blog, and the opening line is everything I wanted to say, but couldn’t find the words to:

“It’s been over two months since I moved to LA, and my New York armor is starting to slowly dissolve. I didn’t even realize how conditioned I was by New York because I was so conditioned… I arrived in LA like a smoking engine, full of ideas and projects (house, work, style, etc.) and LA forced me to relax, to take my time, and enjoy the scenery.”

Clearly, I never lived in New York… it was London for me, for many years.

And my Small Town in the shires (Salisbury) is hardly L.A. now, is it?!

But her words are relevant to how (nearly) 7 years of small town living have changed me.

I’m way more relaxed here in the shires than I ever was in London.

Salisbury is often dubbed ‘Snails-bury’ for it’s slow pace of life.

With the children – life is pretty easy: you get the school you want; you can get them into the clubs they want (no waiting lists; you can walk (or scoot!) pretty much everywhere and you know, life is easy.

Rather, easier than when I lived in Tooting with my firstborn for the first 18 months of his life.

And other things too, like going to the Post Office – there’s no one hour queue all.the.time.!

Sure, there are busy times of day, but nothing like what I remember from living in a big city.  Likewise, hospital appointments come through pretty quickly… and yet, when I first moved down here, I couldn’t quite acclimatise to this slower pace of life.

In fact, I rushed everywhere and noticed very little of my new surroundings.

The one thing I did notice when I first moved here was that there was a definite “mum style” going on with the ladies I saw walking around town.

Shops were limited to a sub-standard M&S (full of all the crud); a White Stuff, a small New Look, Jigsaw’s little sister Kew (remember Kew?!), Laura Ashley, Phase Eight, and a properly ropey BHS.

Most of these stores I couldn’t shop in as their sizing (even the 6’s should they actually do a 6) are too big for me, so shopping was pretty uninspiring.

And you know, because it is so small here, you’d see the same White Stuff Tops, Kew Cardi’s etc on every second woman.

And if they weren’t wearing items from our limited shopping here, then they seemed to be in an explosion of Boden prints because Boden were rather cleverly the one online retailer back then who pretty much always offered free returns.

It used to drive me a bit bonkers.

I felt like most of my clothes made me stick out like a sore thumb and so I toned my style down and started dressing for living in a small town, even if the style wasn’t really me.


This blouse, though pretty enough… was never really “me” but I wore it to blend in I suppose

However, things have really, really changed in the past 7 years.

Or perhaps I finally opened my eyes, and realised not everyone *is* as mum-sy I as I had first perceived.

Whilst we’ve lost a couple of shops, we now have a Topshop, HM and a massive New Look.

But more than that, the ease with which we can shop online (or in other words, the free returns help!) there has been a shift in how I see people dressing.

Perhaps it was always that way, and it took me all this time to actually see it?

Starting this blog was a way of helping me remember who I am right now… not who I was before kids, after kids… just to be myself.

And to remember to not give a toss if I get funny looks because I’m wearing lairy gold boots round the fruit & veg stalls of the  Tuesday market in the middle of the day.


Love my blingy boots!  Really bad, patchy fake tan here – oops!

That old “I couldn’t wear THAT where I live…” or “well you could only get away with wearing that in London…” is proper old tosh.

You can wear what you want, where ever you live as long as you feel comfortable and good in it.

So it turns out, it wasn’t the people of ‘smalls-bury’ making me feel like an ‘outcast’ (yes, I do like exaggerate & be dramatic!!)

It was me.

It was in my own head… and I couldn’t feel happier about shaking those thoughts off.

I’m back to being me.

Blog Updates & Monetisation:

I’ve probably droned on enough about how this blog was set-up as a knee jerk reaction without much planning or thought.

The blog set-up is a basic wordpress template / theme and Mr T knocked up a logo for me in 10 minutes flat one evening with no thought about colour schemes or branding or anything and off I went.

There are no affiliate links in this blog – or in other words, I haven’t made a single penny from blogging this past year.

Money was never the primary motivation.

However, having reached the one year marker, I’ve really had to think about whether or not I should push forward and try and make some kind of living out of this?

I sat & talked through some updates I wanted to make to the look of the blog, and my Web-developer husband’s response was:

“Gah! I’m not doing updates to a WordPress template! it’d be like polishing a turd! It will take less time to just design and build you a bespoke new website which looks more professional.”

Ok, then…

Seriously, I know how lucky I am to have Mr T helping out with the tech side of things, but I had assumed the changes I wanted were small.

Apparently not… so, hopefully, in and around all of his other work he will be squeezing in a new website for me… I will have to be patient, but possibly by the end of April, early May, I will have a slightly more jazzy looking blog. #watchthisspace!

And what about the monetisation bit?


The primary way to start earning some pennies from blogging are affiliate links…  which, in a nutshell are:

You sign up to an affiliate scheme where by if a reader clicks on a link you have in your blog & then makes a purchase, you, the blogger, get a small commission, or kick-back.

Now let’s face it, these commission’s are low… between 2-5% (depends on the retailer) and so, if you take a 3% commission kick-backed on a £50 item someone bought through a blog, the commission would be a whopping £1.50 (paid my the retailer, not paying customer!)

A-huh, you read that right: £1.50

Given the traffic to my blog, though growing, isn’t huge… I won’t be retiring to a beach house in Antigua any time soon.

In fact, in all honestly, I’d be lucky to get into a double figured monthly income of a tenner or so!

That said, every little helps, right?

What I don’t plan to do, is have masses of advertising or anything that I don’t like coming across myself on a blog.

In order to actually make A LOT of money from affiliate links, I’d have to blog daily about high value items in order to receive bigger commissions.  (So if I suddenly start blogging about nothing but Louis Vuitton luggage, Hermes and expensive cars then you know why!)

Seriously though, you won’t notice too much of a difference other than my new jazzy site which the husband is making for me and I will still be blogging about mostly high street fashions with a smattering of the odd boutique purchases which I treat myself to once every blue moon.

And I think we all know by now, that the blogging world has changed where by you have bloggers like me, then much bigger-bloggers, now called ‘Influencers’ who often collaborate with brands and that of course is how you’d make a proper living out of this game.

I cannot imagine for a single moment that any brand should wish to collaborate with me.  How to put it politely? I’m a bit too niche, aren’t I?!

Ha! Anyway, I haven’t made these changes yet, but I will of course be completely transparent with you all once the changes have been implemented.

And finally…

My Signature Style:

Since buying a pair of culottes from Warehouse last Spring… I can’t get enough of them.

They really have become a firm favourite… ‘my thing’ if you will:

Yes, it’s the wide leg crop, or culotte!

They are my go-to item I reach for, weather permitting.

Hell, even if the weather doesn’t permit actually!  I even have culotte dungarees:

Donna Ida Ramona Culotte Pinafore (still available)

Donna Ida Ramona Culotte Pinafore (still available)

I absolutely love wearing them.

Aside from the Zara culottes which are more an ‘awkward length’ trouser on me, I did have to take the other two up myself.

But I have just upped my total number of pairs from three to five and invested in 2 pairs of Gap wide leg crops (featured in this Sunday 7 post):

Crops do ride up when you sit!

Crops do ride up when you sit!

And to show you the full length:

I really like the awkward length & frayed hem!

I really like the awkward length & frayed hem!

Here I’m wearing my crops with an old warehouse turtle neck sweater and these HM babouche slip-ons.

I’m also rather taken with the off-white pair:

If you’re wondering what shoes to go for with a wide leg crop, I find whilst I usually reach for trainers in the cooler months, pretty much any footwear goes: flip-flops to ankle boots; flatform to flat sandals: a granny heeled glove shoe to wooden clogs… whatever takes your fancy.

For sizing reference, these are a GAP Petite size 4 (available in regular and tall lengths as well).  I am normally a 2 in Gap, but the reviews all warned to size up as they are higher-waisted /sit on your true waist, and I think that’s probably good advice.  The Off-white pair are a fraction (and I do mean a teensy fraction) looser than the khaki pair, and I wonder if that’s perhaps because the fabric had less dying /processing?

For the first time in my life, an item of clothing has over-taken jeans as my favourite clothing item.

And although I will of course still always love jeans and will no doubt wear them lots of course, I’m just giving you some advance warning now: expect to see a lot more of these crops!

That’s me done for tonight, and thank you for reading my recent self-indulgent series of posts.

I do plan to get braver in the coming months with more focus on petites and styling generally… things I’ve touched on but ultimately shied away from as well, probably because I’ve not felt confident or daring enough, but since writing the Sunday 7 posts and styling the wildcard item with 3 looks, I think I’m slowly building my confidence up in sharing more of myself.

That said, I’m no stylist, or fashion journalist… I’m just a very regular stay at home mum who loves fashion.  So, I won’t be pretending to be anything different, fear not!

Back to usual next week… though honestly, I’m not sure my mid-week posts have ever had a running theme!

Would love to hear if you’re already culotting and if not… have I chipped away at you enough yet to convert you?!

Thanks for reading.