Stripes and denim are two of my all-time favourite fashion themes, and combined they look even better. If I’m stuck, they’re my go-to styles; both timeless and easy to wear. When I feel too girly (that’s not really my thing), denim is the best way to add a bit of that boyish edge that I love to any outfit. You can never go wrong with a striped dress and trainers to caj it down or a striped tee, teamed under dungarees or a denim pinafore for maximum cool points. A Breton top tucked into blue, cropped jeans is always a fail-safe ensemble for me if I can’t find anything else to wear.
All hail the 90s! I was only a baby in the decade but my sister was a teenager and I have vivid memories of her getting ready to go out clubbing listening to sassy girl bands, parading around in an oversized Spice Girls t-shirt, so the era is nostalgic and special to me.
Vintage is my thing, and recently I have acquired some great pieces from Cow vintage, a haven of quirky upcycled treasures that I fell in love with last year when exploring Nottingham for the first time (they also have stores in Birmingham, Sheffield, Manchester and recently opened one in Liverpool). Vintage shopping gives me a buzz that no other kind does (and trust me I love shopping) because old, unwanted clothes have a story to tell and styles can be rediscovered by a new owner. Cow has a fab selection of denim, floral dresses and reworked Ralph Lauren crop tops. Sometimes you can even find a battered pair of Docs or old school trainers for a ridiculously cheap price (it’s ideal for stingy students like me!).
One of my biggest style icons and fashion idols, Alexa Chung, has recently collaborated with high street faves Marks and Spencers to release an ‘exclusive clothing collection.’
It reminisces vintage items from M&S’ history, reinventing a select number of archive pieces to make classics appealing to a modern breed of fashion consumer whilst incorporating Alexa’s unique personal style. The combination of contemporary class and youthful nostalgia embodies Alexa’s fun and creative perspective, emphasised by the items she chose to bring back to 2016 life. Think Jack Wills-style woolly jumpers, dogtooth print, Chelsea boots and slinky camis and dresses. As Alexa herself said:
I just found the future of Marks and Spencers in the past
When moving to uni, admittedly one of the main things I was most excited about was decorating my new room. Since bedrooms in Halls are so small it’s easy to make them feel cosy and homely, and decorating can be really cheap if you know where to look (most of my stuff came from Ebay or Ikea). This means your room can look nice even on a student budget!
Your room is the only really space you’ve got all to yourself when you’re so far away from home and it’s also a direct reflection of your personality, so you want it to be special.
I love lights and the ambience they can bring to a room, so I tried to vary lighting as much as possible with fairy lights and lamps to make it warmer and prettier.
Possibly my favourite thing about my room is my tapestry throw from Ebay. It was about £15 with postage and adds so much colour to my walls. I try to have as many pictures up as I possibly can as well because I love looking around and seeing all my best memories. I use the app Free Prints, available on the App Store on most smart phones, so I can order 45 prints for free each month to add to my collection.
I ran out of space on my notice boards for all my photos so I made a DIY photo hanger to display more.
Having a tidy workspace is essential if I’m likely to do any work, because otherwise I’ll make it into an excuse to procrastinate. So I keep a paper basket to organise any loose work or letters hanging around – it was actually a fruit bowl from Matalan but it looks cute and does the same job! My desk is ugly and red underneath so I decided to cover it with another tapestry to give it a bit of life.
I love having plants because they bring life and colour to any room even though I keep forgetting to water them. I keep a collection of my favourite items on my shelves, like Alexa Chung’s book, IT, and a framed photograph of my trip to the Grand Canyon.
One of my best friends bought me this rug for my 18th birthday and it distracts attention really well from the ugly blue carpet.
I’m always on the lookout for things that will fit well in my room, which is pretty easy because it’s really just an eclectic mix of stuff that I like. Vintage stores and charity shops are some of the best places to pick up new ornaments or decorations and Urban Outfitters have lots of quirky furnishings but its always a good idea to wait for their sales! Living in Nottingham is perfect for this because as well as being such an inspiring city aesthetically it’s full of charity and vintage shops.