Print me Up!

20140213-053958.jpg

Sunday saw the launch of the Peter Pilotto for Target range on Net a Porter, and I was lucky enough to remember to check the site in the morning when all stock was still available. It was a stroke of genius that Net a Porter decided to exclusively stock a few of the items from the range so that those of us not lucky enough to have US shipping addresses could get hold of them.

Fast forward a couple of days and this arrived… Exciting!

20140213-054200.jpg

I’m so impressed with the quality of the clothes. Beautiful crepe, the softest jersey and stunning prints all make this collection covetable. Here are the pieces now gracing my wardrobe.

20140213-055842.jpg

20140213-055900.jpg

Did you manage to get a hold of anything? Would love to know.

Erin, Love from Cornfield… X

Basically Impossible

20130513-212453.jpg
The very nature of the word Basic implies that its something that’s easy. Something readily found and simple to get hold of. Why then, are the so-called wardrobe “basics”, the hardest things on the planet to buy?

I had a big, long overdue, sort out yesterday, and concluded that whilst I have a great selection of skirts, trousers and dresses, plus some really nice “dressier” tops, I’m lacking in the good T-shirt department. It’s my own fault. I never look to go shopping for the perfect white t-shirt, or black crew neck. What I shop for is colour that then goes with neutral trousers or black skirts. Who’d have thought that it’s the simplest things that have left a gap in my wardrobe?

My style has changed a little since having a baby and returning to work for a company who’s ethos is about fun. Gone are the days of a suit with a shirt and court shoes. What’s taken its place is a look which would work as well for lunch with friends as in the office. Trousers with a blazer and statement necklace; jeans with a cardigan and high heels; skirts topped off with a more casual sweater and sandals… All underpinned by a good T-shirt.

20130513-213423.jpg
I’m not alone in this look. Plenty of people out there, celebs or otherwise, wear this “uniform” on a daily basis. What then, when it is something that’s so needed, makes these so hard to find?!

I’ve tried many things… Silk Tees from Gap and Aubin & Wills (which although great for the office don’t translate well for weekends);

20130513-213459.jpg
scoop neck “limited” tees from M&S which although comfy are too clingy for the look I’m after;

20130513-213441.jpg
the TopShop Scalloped vest which every woman and her dog owns (ok, I confess, I have it in three colours and it is nice but there are bra and length issues to contend with);

20130513-213507.jpg
American Apparel t-shirts which aren’t quite right.

20130513-213452.jpg
I think I may have found the answer though.

J. Crew.

I know, I know… I bang on about this brand, and have even been told by my American boss that over there they are nothing that special (he favours Tom Ford and Chrome Hearts so I automatically stop listening to his sartorial choices), but they do womenswear well.

20130513-213432.jpg
Jenna Lyons really has perfectly positioned her brand to be both aspirational and wearable. Very important indeed. Tom Mora describes the J.Crew woman as Confident. Chic. Smart. Good man!

20130513-213514.jpg
Apparently, their Vintage Cotton Tees are legendary, so much so they come in a multitude of colours. I would love to be able to try one first (as I size up or down depending on the fit I’m after), but there is no store here until the Autumn and returning things on line is annoying, especially to the US even if return are free. I guess I’ll just have to bite the bullet and order.

To start with I’d go for Black to see what its like, then add White, Navy and Grey to the collection. There’s no shame in owning a few of the same thing in different colours. I do that A LOT!

So the question to you readers is… Do you have one of these tees? How’s the fit? Would you recommend? Or perhaps there’s a basic that you have and I know nothing of. If that’s the case, do please share!

Erin, Love from Cornfield… X

Sale Highs and Bargain Buys

It seems only fitting that on the last day of January I do a round up of my sales buys from AW12. I’m very much looking forward to the new season and have been excited by the preliminary drops there have been so far (like this Monochrome dress) but let me just share my sale highs from December and this month before we move on.

Firstly, actual sale shopping with a baby is a complete no-no. There was absolutely no way I was going to be negotiating narrow rails and flailing arms with an Uppababy (containing baby) in front of me, although granted, the Buggy may have been useful as a trolley cum blockage device!

This year, I was very online savvy, knowing when each retailer was going into sale, and bookmarking the things I was actually after. This isn’t my usual approach, but after my experiences this year, might be the way I now go. Who doesn’t mind shopping from their own home?!

Some sales started before Christmas (Whistles), whilst others started on Christmas Day (M&S). I would say I have been 80% successful in getting what I was looking for.

The two items I wanted in M&S were sold out pre-sale in my size, and even those sizes that went into the sale weren’t a great reduction (a military coat and a combination trench).

20130131-191559.jpg
I did however get a great Sweatshirt (which will see me through the colder part of SS13) reduced to just £9 and a pair of Floral Trousers (£11 from £55) again, great for this coming season.

20130131-191506.jpg

Zara, a perennial favourite, was a little disappointing as the reductions were not great initially (but the selection was good on Boxing Day). The things I bought were actually all returned, but on returning to a store mid-Jan, the second wave of items that enter the sale caught my eye, and I found a longed-for Jacket for £17 and some faux-leather leggings for just £9. Brilliant.

My online successes have materialised in the form of Aubin &Wills, Cos, H&M and J.Crew. Aubin & Wills is a sad story as the brand is closing, however it meant I got some silk t-shirts at £70 off the original price. Great colours and great for summer or under jackets the rest of the time. The first stalk of the Cos sale resulted in nothing eventually, but a visit online only last week saw the dress I’d been coveting at less than half price! Hurrah! H&M was successful as I managed to replace the burgandy leather gloves I lost one of for £3.99 and J.Crew was simply brilliant as I now own a lusted-after cashmere jumper, some shorts for the summer, a couple of jersey basics and a ring all for under £100 with their amazing 40% off sale items deal. Very pleased indeed.

20130131-192237.jpg
Two last highs have been my Topshop Parka (incredibly warm) and River Island Blazer (bargain for the detailing alone).

20130131-191635.jpg
I haven’t gone mad, and that’s in keeping with one of my resolutions, but my new mentality to sales shopping has really worked. I think if you don’t get the chance to go to the actual shops, you aren’t tempted by all the crud which has been on the shop floor for at every sale since 2001. Online shopping promotes a bit of sane thinking, and although annoying for returns in some cases (I’m still waiting on a Cos refund from over three weeks ago, however Reiss was refunded the next day), has changed my sale habits.

My Mum is also like a little devil on my shoulder, constantly telling me she could make it for cheaper. I know its a good deal when that devil starts to say “You couldn’t buy the fabric for that let alone make it as well!”

Long gone are the days when I’ll be queuing up outside a store at 5am for the first taste of a bargain… She says! I might be talking differently in 18 months time when getting up early could mean bagging the furniture deal of the century. We’ll see…

Erin, Love from Cornfield… X

I Do Resolve…

Image

It’s the first day of Florence Finds #JanuaryJoy series, and today I’m thinking about my New Year’s Resolutions… Much the same as Rebecca, I like to see January as a clean start, a nice fresh page to start everything with good intentions.

#JanuaryJoy – Make some resolutions

So, without further ado, here is my list of resolutions for 2013.

Image

  • Be the Fittest I’ve ever been. A somewhat shallow first resolution, and not quite the typical “lose weight” one that most people make, but of course, being the fittest I’ve been will hopefully mean that I do get to my target weight (and therefore in to all my clothes). It will also help me, obviously, with my Marathon training, culminating with the race itself on April 21st.

Image

  • Think before I buy. I have so many clothes and shoes. So many in fact that I have to do the seasonal swap-over where half go into the loft for storage since my drawers and wardrobes can’t take any more. As 2013 will be a year for Husband and I to really save, this is going to be especially important. “Do I really need it?” is set to become my new mantra.

Creative Wardrobe

  • Be creative with my wardrobe. A resolution that leads on nicely from the above, I want to make sure that this year, I get a lot of creative wear out of my current clothes and shoes. I can’t wait to share that with you through my Inspired by and Worn posts.

Image

  • Save. Husband and I have decreed at that 2013 will be the year to really put some pennies together in order to move house. We are just not a two-bed house family, and with the arrival of Little-Man, this has become even more apparent. The wish-list of things for the new house is long and probably unachievable without a lottery win (let’s hope our Euromillions ticket is the lucky one tonight), but some extra cash will certainly help us along.

Image

  •  Make 2013 a success at work. We have big things happening at work this year. HUGE. However, those goals don’t come without a lot of hard work. I want to make sure that I do my very best, along with my team, in order to achieve them. I’m positive that we will.

Image

  • Be the best Mother I can. Last but by no means least, I want to make sure that I do the very best by my Son. Now some people will say that means not going back to work and spending all my time with him. I like to think that a balance of what he needs, and I need, is right. Weekends will take on a new meaning, becoming much more important for us as a family. But most importantly, I will see him every night for supper, bath-time, story and bed. I have the book/film “I don’t know how she does it” in my minds eye whilst writing this, but I’m not the first Mother to have managed, and certainly won’t be the last.

So there we are. My Husband would add two more to this list, those being “Be More Tidy” (we have the same clean up before the cleaner comes dash that Rebecca has) and “Use Technology Less” (Oh the irony as I write this! I do often have the Mac, iPhone and iPad on the Sofa with me).

What are your resolutions? The same old, or something more?

Erin, Love from Cornfield… X