Colored jeans

It took me some fitting room time to realise that red jeans don’t really suit me – 9 pairs exactly ;-)


Casual minimalism

Elbow patches are all over the place this fall/winter and I love the sequin detail on this one. What’s more, I have a bit of a fetish for batwing sleeves. So when I saw this pull-over at Zadig & Voltaire, I couldn’t (didn’t try to) resist.

Pull-over / Zadig & Voltaire

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Love a basic, love a bargain

I’ve been lusting after that Zadig & Voltaire fur-lined hoodie for a while, it’s just perfect for when I go to my swimming practice during the chilly days of autumn/winter. But then the price was on the WTF level and I was soooo undecided.

Fortunately there’s a H&M on my way to Z&V and I went in on a whim today. You know, just hoping they’d have thought about a basic piece such as the faux-fur lined hoodie that everyone needs this season. ‘Cause they do, don’t they?

And, as you can see, TOTAL SATISFACTION! I’ve even had two, in different colours, for the price. Still on the WTF level, bottom side though.

Cotton & faux-fur hoodie / H&M
Cotton & fur-lined (?) hoodie/ Zadig & Voltaire

Smart shopping

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We were having a slash-’n-trash-at-my-closet girls evening with my friend M. the other day modelling outfits, sipping Italian spumante and talking clothes. She suggested I should share my views on wardrobe weeding* and smart shopping with you on my blog. Hope it’ll come in handy and just in time for the summer sales!

Now, I am not a fashion expert but I am quite knowledgeable when it comes to shopping. As it happens, I tend to do this a lot ;-)

Here is my 9-step smart shopping process that I developed for myself:

  1. Go shopping often**. It doesn’t mean you always have to buy something but most shops bring in new items weekly and in limited stock; I prefer checking out regularly until I find something that I really LOVE***.

  2. Avoid week-ends. Preferably shop in the mornings. There’s barely a soul in the shops at the opening time during week-days, you have plenty of space to peruse the clothes rails, no queuing at the fitting rooms (valuable one!), no limit to the number of items you can try and available shop assistants to help/advise you.

  3. From time to time check shops where you would not normally go (assuming they are not your style, too expensive etc.).

  4. Try anything that attracts your eye, even if on second thought you’d dismiss them as unfitting, not your style, too tight etc. You’ll be surprised how good some of them can make you look once you try them on.

  5. Try anything that even remotely corresponds to the item you’re looking for. Or not. Again, you’ll be surprised.

  6. How do you feel wearing the new item? Does it INSTANTLY make you feel handsome? Confident? Sexy? Brings a [smug] SMILE on to your face? Then it might make a good investment.

  7. Make sure the new item you’d like to buy matches at least 3 other items in your closet. I would even say you should be able to compose at least 3 FULL OUTFITS with the new item. If they’re also different styles, even better. This is VERY important. What use of a great piece of clothing if you cannot ever wear it? Or if every time you’re wearing it, you look like you’re dressed the same?

  8. Buy expensive designer items on sale****. Unless you’re quite the fashionista, they will well continue being on trend next year and the year after etc.

  9. Talking about sales, I very much like to go in the shops a couple of days before the sales start, spot the items I like, try them out, make a mental note of those that fit the criteria listed above and come back to buy them on sales. What’s more, this is when you can also see where your fav items will be arranged in the shop – thus facilitating finding them quickly on D-day – as sales assistants usually need a few days to organise the merchandise.

And here’s my take on point no. 7, a slideshow of outfits built around my new 2011 summer staple, the denim mini*****: a sporty outfit for when I go to my swim practice, a smart-chic outfit for an evening out (I’m thinking Louise Night), a casual Friday outfit and a relaxed denim-on-denim outfit for the week-end.

Okay. This post is long enough without the usual details of my outfits. But if you’re interested, feel free to ask in the comments section and I’ll be happy to share ;-)

* What with women typically wearing 20% of their clothes 80% of the time. Definitely a topic to develop in a later post.
** I see you smiling! ;-) Keep reading, I promise this is not only about shopping love, there’s a smart way to do it too ;-)
*** I might have a slightly problem here seeing as I love LOTS of things. Too many talented designers out there ;-)
**** Okay, if you can refrain. I can’t always.
***** The one I’m wearing is a recent buy from Zara. I swear I played those outfits in my mind while trying it out in the fitting room. And a few more others btw ;-)

Pretty cute, n’est-ce pas?

There’s nothing not to love about this cute little skirt: the fabric (100% cotton), the blue print, the girlie cut, the delightful convenient side pockets and, last but not least, its oh-so-reasonable price (7,99 €).

I’m wearing:

Cotton skirt / H&M
Klein blue pull-over / Comptoir des Cotonniers
Beaded bracelet / COS

One key colour piece

I’ve been lusting after this COS patent leather yellow clutch for a while.

Lush green Belgian spring landscape: all in a COS dress

This was supposed to be a post about cycling-on-a-glorious-sunny-day-from-Brussels-to-the-Strépy-Thieu-boat-lift, full of sunbathed pictures of the lush green Belgian spring landscape and me smiling on my (borrowed from my friend) bike pretending the 60 km ride is nothing but effortless when you’re wearing a pair of bright yellow Onitsuka Tiger sneakers.

These, at least, I had already decided to wear today. For the rest of the outfit I was planning to ransack my friend’s closet considering that he’s a frequent bike rider* and I am.. well.. NOT.EVER.RIDING.A.BIKE.

Unfortunately the cycling trip got cancelled** but I guess the lush spring green must have stayed imprinted on my subconscious somehow. Otherwise how can I explain the irresistible attraction I felt towards this green dress from COS that joyfully joined my growing collection of little colour dresses?

* So he should know what items are absolutely essential to counterbalance my exclusively esthetical approach to cycling
** Get better soon Tim, I’m sure my readers are all impatient to see my (exhausted yet triumphant) smile after those 60 km!