Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Shoes: My Spring style to a T!

Hi guys,
February is nearly here, and it is in February that I start thinking about my style and any new pieces I need in my wardrobe for the coming Spring. And one of the things I knew I needed was to replace the tan clogs that I wore to death last Spring/Summer: I wore them so often there is barely any sole left and the leather on the strap is so thin it's on the verge of snapping!

I needed something tan, with a very low heel, and something that would go with everything. After much searching, here's what I chose to replace them:
 photo tbar1_zps4cb1626e.jpg  photo tbar3_zps1c25a6d0.jpg  photo tbar2_zpsc16feef7.jpg
I just couldn't resist these gorgeous Mellow Yellow shoes from Sarenza (now only available in black), which will be perfect for Spring. They remind me of the Clarks T bar shoes I used to wear to school when I was a little girl: the six year old in me would have loved the heart detailing! The grown up in me loves how versatile they are: I want to wear them with skinny jeans and black cigarette trousers. But I know they're going to look great and very bohemian with midi dresses and maxi skirts too.

I picked these up in the Sarenza sale, which is still going strong! There are not only a great range of boots and winter boots (which you'd expect from a January sale) but also great summer shoes like these, so if you like to plan ahead it's worth checking out.

Now that the snow has melted have you started thinking about your new spring style yet? And have you been shopping for any new spring pieces? I'd love to hear all about it!

Love Tor x

Latest on Fabfrocks at Home: Emma Bridgewater at TKMaxx for Comic Relief
Latest on Fabfrocks and Family: Baby brand lust - Little Marc Jacobs

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Daily Wear: Sale shopping at Westfield London

Hi guys,
On Thursday I went for my final sales shopping trip to Westfield London: and there were still plenty of bargains to be had! It was also my first trip into London with Wilbur, and I would say it was a very successful trip all round! I love Westfield, so it was great to be shopping there again: regional shopping to good, but you really can't beat London shopping, can you?

I hit up all of the usual high street stores, and after toying with a Balmain-style jacket in Zara, I picked up this coat, reduced from £95 to £50 in Topshop:
 photo westfield3-5_zps26e3081b.jpg  photo westfield4-2_zps6d9f2276.jpg  photo westfield1-5_zpsb1d66c30.jpg  photo westfield2-5_zps122b8f60.jpg
Coat and boots, Topshop. Jeans, Miss Selfridge. Hat, Urban Outfitters sample sale. Satchel, car boot sale.

I fell in love with the super-soft fur and the pleats at the back. There's a lot of fabric in this coat (it's soo heavy!) so it was a damn bargain! I also picked up a dress and some towels in Debenhams and two Little Marc Jacobs outfits for Wilbur. Westfield London hands down has the best selection of children's clothes shops I have ever seen: definitely worth the drive down just to dress the little man. And definitely worth it for my new coat: I love it!

Have you had any final sales bargains this weekend? If you're nearby and looking for something to do, I heartily recommend a trip to Westfield London. I'm hoping to get down again before the sales are over: I didn't get to check out nearly as many of the stores as I wanted!!

Love Tor x

*I received a gift voucher from Westfield London to help me write this post

Latest on Fabfrocks at Home: My picks from the Debenhams SS home collections
Latest on Fabfrocks and Family: How to photograph your baby

Friday, 25 January 2013

Hair: To visit the salon or to DIY. That is the question!

Hi guys,
[Post sponsored by Schwarzkopf] It's the question I have often asked myself. Should you colour your hair yourself, or do you always need to go to the hairdressers. When I was a student my hair was regularly bleached in the kitchen sink. But now I always have my highlights done by the hairdresser. I wouldn't recommend anything else. I think there are some exceptions to this rule though: and one of those is bright colours, especially dip dye.
PhotobucketWhen I had my hair dip dyed at the salon I was terminally disappointed: the colour only lasted about 8 weeks and it really wasn't worth the money. It also wasn't complicated to do (or it didn't seem to be) All the hairdresser did was backcomb my ends and then paint on the colour: the whole process took less than 15 minutes. So I was excited to read about the new Live Colour XXL Brights collection.

LIVE Color XXL Ultra Brights is a collection of three brand new semi-permanent strikingly intense and colourful shades including Fiery Copper, Raspberry Rebel and Pillar Box Red. Apply to pre-lightened hair for the brightest colour, use on your normal hair for a vibrant colour boost, or mixed with your daily conditioner for pretty pastel results. And look how pretty they are:

Schwarzkopf LIVE Color XXL Ultra Brights (SRP £5.49) is available from Boots, Superdrug, Asda, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Savers, Tesco, Wilkinson, Bodycare and Independent Chemists nationwide. I'm almost tempted to buy a box and give the dip dye a go myself at home. I did love the stand out affect of it!

Have you tried a dip dye? Have you ever been tempted to do something really bright with your hair? And would you do it at home, or go to the hairdressers?

Love Tor x

*The video within this post is sponsored

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

SS13: Must have Primark's newest collections

Hi guys,
I know it's snowing outside, so obviously it makes perfect sense that all I can think about is what I'm going to be wearing when Spring finally makes an appearance. Or not. Admittedly it might be a while before we get to wear any of them, but towards the end of every season I get itchy to start buying from the new season collections. And the good news is, they're starting to pop up instore soon. As the sale stock is taken out, the fresh bright colours of spring are coming in.

If you want to see which new season catwalk trends the highstreet has picked up on and will be attempting to replicate you can do a lot worse that to look towards first Topshop, and second Primark. Here are the publicity shots showcasing Primark's latest offerings:
 photo ss13primark1_zps88bc2883.jpg Gilet £18, Dress £15, Stud creeper £14, Bum bag £5, Socks £1.50

 photo ss13primark2_zps928f2c95.jpg Dress £20, Heels £12, Sunglasses £3.

 photo ss13primark3_zpsc68a3c58.jpg Jumper £10, Skirt £10, Studded creeper £14, Mens cap £4.

 photo ss13primark4_zps1e56f7d8.jpg
Heels £12, Sunglasses £3, Trousers tbc

To be honest, the way they have styled this photoshoot is all a little young and urban for my personal tastes. The affect of this being that I thought I didn't like any of it. But actually, if you look at each piece in isolation, there is a lot to like: the mint green chiffon dress in the first picture, for example. And the pretty rope-style sandals in the second picture.

Does anything from the new collection take your fancy? And have you had any Primark bargains lately? I'd love to hear all about them!

Love Tor x

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Expanding the Fabfrocks empire

Hi guys,
When I started this blog back in 2007, it was to explore all things fashion because that was my obsession. I lived and breathed fashion: I still do. But as I've got older my interests have broadened and changed too. I've gotten married, am about to buy my first house, started experimenting with crafts. I've become a mummy, and realise every day that my little boy is the most important thing in the world: yes, even more important than designer shoes.

So to reflect my changing interests, I've launched two new blogs which will also fall under the Fabfrocks umbrella; Fabfrocks at Home, and Fabfrocks Family.

Fabfrocks at Home
 photo fabfrocksathome660_zps5869f8a5.jpg
Fabfrocks at Home is a place you can lust after beautiful interiors, explore my house as it changes and evolves, and check out the latest homewares from the highstreet. It's also where I will be sharing recipes, crafting how tos, tutorials for doing up your home on the cheap. If it can help make your home a happier and more beautiful place then you'll find it here!

Fabfrocks Family
 photo fabfrocksfamily660_zps9ab97db2.jpg
Fabfrocks Family is the place I will blog about all things around being a mummy! Great changing bags, cute kids outfits, the sleepless nights, the horrible nappies and cute pictures of babies. You'll find all this plus (hopefully) some occasional practical advice about parenting here!

Fabfrocks World
 photo fabfrocksworld660_zpsc0f3b0ad.jpg
This will remain the same fashion blog you know and (hopefully) love. The focus and content will remain just the same: high street, high end, but always bargain on a budget! They'll also be the usual outfit posts, sneak previews of upcoming highstreet collections, and shopping tips.

I hope you like the new sites as much as I do!
Love Tor x

PS- As always, huge thanks to Carly Watts for the amazing design work. I love all of my new headers!

Monday, 21 January 2013

Daily Wear: Winter neons

Hi guys,
I think you have to celebrate the small victories. On Sunday, Wilbur let me get dressed without crying, and then go out for lunch and eat three full courses whilst he slept: the first time that's happened since he was born!

For the occasion I wore bright neons, but in an uber traditional way. A typical Sunday lunch outfit. I would say the format of this outfit is boringly stereotypical for this time of year: knee high boots, floral dress, blazer. Yawn. But the colours mean that it looked a little more interesting, and although it's not the best or most fashion-forward outfit I've ever worn, I was pleased with how it looked.
 photo winterneon1_zps9853858d.jpg  photo winterneon4_zps2f932f28.jpg  photo winterneon3_zps1c79be38.jpg  photo winterneon2_zps82b5bfd5.jpg Dress - Warehouse. Jacket, belt and necklace - all H&M. Handbag - Betsey Johnson. Boots - Next.

The jacket and the dress were both January sales purchases. The dress is from Warehouse for just £15 and the jacket was from H&M for £10. With hindsight, I'm not that keen on how this jacket looks with the dress. But it will look amazing teamed with simple t-shirts or blouses and jeans when spring arrives.

My husband told me (once we'd already left the house!) that the outfit was too bright and garish. But I'm not sure I agree. What do you think of wearing neons to brighten up gloomy snowy days? Are you a fan of neons at all, and will you be wearing them this spring?

Love Tor x

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Shoes: The perfect studded boots from Topshop

Hi guys,
Am I allowed to change my mind and have a new favourite purchase from the sales? Because if I am, it would definitely be these studded boots from Topshop:
 photo foxy4_zpsca4bb649.jpg  photo studboots2_zps2a661e77.jpg  photo studboots1_zpsf187afeb.jpg And they were a serious bargain! The original price was £80. They were reduced to £50, and having tried them on I decided to snap them up straight away. Then, when I got to the till I discovered they'd been reduced again and I ended up paying just £30 for these babies: you wonder if that even covers the cost of the leather!

It just goes to show that even though the sales are dwindling down, it's definitely worth popping in to some of your favourite shops to see what they have left and further reduced: you could be pleasantly surprised.

Here are some of the best sale offers still on right now:
Debenhams Blue Cross Sale -Up to 70% off (also available online)
Boots 75% off all Christmas gift sets
Matalan 70% off (also available online)
Warehouse 70% off
Topshop: Further reductions (discounts vary)

These boots are going to look great teamed with my gold studded leather jacket. And the best thing is, they look just as good when they're worn with tights and skirts as they do with jeans and trousers. Could they be a contender for the crown of my new favourite boots? It's too early to tell. But lets just say my beloved H by Hudson boots should sleep with one eye open....

Love Tor x

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Daily Wear: Feeling Foxy!

Hi guys,
Well it's snowed. Which is nice/terrible, depending on whether you have to trek to work or not. But it's also leading to some interesting sartorial decisions from the general public: it snows and I'm always amazed by the things people think it's OK to wear!

Meanwhile, I have obviously been watching too much Jeremy Kyle, because writing that title immediately made me think of the foxy bingo ad at the start of the show. (Sign of a woman watching daytime TV on maternity leave, methinks?) I am, in fact, not referring to bingo but to my gorgeous new Topshop fox scarf: a Christmas present from hubby. Simply put, it's a scarf that looks like it has a cartoon fox-fur stole on it. And it's just perfect for wearing in this terrible weather:
 photo foxy1_zpsed6ec4e1.jpg  photo foxy3_zps4b4a36e8.jpg  photo foxy4_zpsca4bb649.jpg Fox scarf, mittens, and studded boots - all Topshop. Cocoon coat - H&M. Jeans - Miss Selfridges. Snakeskin blouse - French Connection.

I've teamed it with my new studded boots (which will be getting their own post shortly), cozy knitted mittens, and my rust coloured cocoon coat, which coincidentally matches my foxy scarf perfectly.

I love winter accessories: they're so much fun! When else can you wear faux fur on your head, mittens on strings like you did when you were a kid, or a hat scarf and glove set that all look like pandas?! It's like winter arrives and all bets are off: child-like colours and patterns become the norm. I think the snow brings out the kid in all of us, and I love it!

How are you keeping warm in this terrible weather? What are you wearing, and are you wrapping up in any unusual winter accessories?

Love Tor x

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

The shoes every girl needs Part Four: Winter Wellies

Hi guys,
Here's part four of my series of shoes you need to have a perfectly rounded shoe wardrobe! I believe that with just 6 carefully selected pairs of shoes, you can have a shoe for every possible occasion.

This month's shoe that every girl needs couldn't have come at a better time, given all the snow we've had: it's the winter wellie. Much more versatile than a snow boot (only worth buying if you go skiing) but won't get damaged in the snow and rain like your leather boots. Perfect for adding a flash of colour on a dreary day. And just as useful for April showers as they are for January snowstorms. If you don't have a pair of wellies, I suspect this week is the week you'll be asking yourself why not!
Gold Hunter wellies, were £109 now £43.60 (60% discount)
Missoni print boots, were £148.90 now £74.50 (50% discount)
Moschino Cheap & Chic leopard print wellies, were £156 now £109.20 (30% discount)
Haviaianas summer print boots, were £48.90 now £29.30 (40% discount)
Guess pink wellies, were £72 now £42.30 (40% discount)
Giesswein carnival boots, were £68 now £34 (50% discount)

The Sarenza sale is in full swing, so now is the perfect time to pick up a pair of designer wellies: I've never seen Hunter wellies so cheap! The pairs that have really caught my eye though are the patterned Missoni ones and the leopard print Moschino boots. I'm definitely going to be picking up one of them, I just can't choose which ones!! With a pair of these on my feet, dressing for the snow will have never looked so good.

Wondering what other shoes every girl needs in her wardrobe? Check out part one (black heels) here,  part two (leather pumps) here, and part three (comfy flat boots) here.

Love Tor x

Monday, 14 January 2013

Matalan sale: Buy now, wear all spring

Hi guys,
When shopping the sales it's easy to fall into the trap of buying chunky winter coats and sequins perfect for Christmas: no doubt bargains, but not exactly sensible purchases for the warmer months that will be here before you know it.

For obvious reasons, you don't see a lot of spring/summer clothes in the January sales. So imagine my surprise to find these fully lined jersey blazers in the Matalan sale reduced from £25 to just £5: Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket
I picked up the jersey grey and pastel green versions because I can't resist grey marl, and because when spring arrives, pastels are always in fashion. If these colours don't float your boat though, my local store also had the same jacket available in electric blue, red, fuchsia, burgundy, aubergine and black: all £5 regardless of the colour you chose!

So what should you look for when trying to find bargains for next season in the winter sales?
- Well, the first thing to look for is lighter colours: anything in pastels, white, nautical-style stripes and bright flouro colours is always going to work nicely for spring: that fluorescent pink jumper that looked so amazing in December with black leather trousers and a fur coat, for example, will look just as good come spring teamed with pale boyfriend jeans and new sandals.

- Secondly look for lighter weight fabrics. Chiffon and silk are always popular at Christmas because they're seen as luxury fabrics. But they're also so lightweight that they look great and glamorous worn on warm summer nights.

- Finally, think outside the box. Could that trophy jacket work for a summer wedding if you wear it with a brightly coloured dress? Will you wear coloured jeans in the summer as well as the winter? It's amazing how many items you'll find that overlap all the seasons, that you can wear again and again.

But back to my bargain jackets. It's not often you find such an amazing and versatile sale bargain that you could buy now and still be wearing in 6 months where the reductions are higher than 50%: if you live near a Matalan then my advice is to snap one up before they're all gone!

And if you're quick then the Matalan sale is available online, and you'll find the jacket on the site in the grey, green, and navy blue colours right now! Here's the link!

Love Tor x

Friday, 11 January 2013

Health: My New Year's resolution...

Hi guys,
Ugh! It's that time of the year again - time to feel guilty about all your festive overindulgence. And I didn't just fail on my mission not to eat too much once this year: I failed several times. What can I say, who can resist a tin of Quality Street? Or Roses...Miniature Heroes...Celebrations....Thorntons Fudge..... Ahem. Anyway, the point is my newly acquired mummy jelly belly is jiggling about merrily, and like so many other people I've decided that January (as in right now) is the perfect time to start doing something about it!

I'm not signing up to a fancy (or expensive) diet scheme though. Instead I'm heading over to the Bupa website where they have released a whole load of free  Bupa apps to help anyone who's feeling a little frazzled and overindulged after a (let's face it) wonderful Christmas blowout to find healthy.

For me, finding healthy means losing weight, so the tools that will be useful to be are the weight loss tips and the exercise programmes that provide fitness regimes that help to improve fitness levels - and, as a result, your health. But it's not all about weight! There's also a tool that calculates how much alcohol you’re drinking(I could've used that 12 months ago, but sadly didn’t get the chance until now) and you can also assess your own health, enabling you to reduce a risk of illness, and find out more about a variety of common conditions and issues like stress, sleep problems, and giving up smoking.

Bupa also provide cancer risk assessments, augmented by a wealth of information and advice on their Cancer Health tab; this can be found by going through Bupa's "A-Z Health Info Directory" tool, helping users to navigate the whole scope of their health information.
So my plan for January is to eat all the left over Christmas chocolate up as quickly as possible (well, who would throw it away?!) and then start watching what I eat and, more importantly, get back into a new exercise programme that works with my new lifestyle. That will involve lots of walking, a weekly swim, and a weekly very competitive game of badminton with my husband. Oh, and of course daily sessions on the Wii fit: perfect for fitting around baby's nap times!

Are you trying to lose weight this January? Or do you have any other health or fitness goals? I'd love to hear all about them! Go on, writing them down makes it more real, and then you have to do it! Right?!

Love Tor x

*This post is sponsored*

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Sneak Peek: The Motel S/S13 Look book

Hi guys,
The January sales aren't quite over yet (I can't wait to show you some of the amazing bargains I picked up when I went on a spree today!) but even more excitingly than that, Spring/Summer is coming.

I've started getting emails containing some of the new season look books from a couple of my favourite brands, and despite my love of all things winter, it's got me feeling quite excited about the warmer weather and a new summer wardrobe. So I couldn't resist showing you a sneak peek of some of the new season pieces from Motel: mostly because I just loved the bright, vibrant, youthful photography, moreso than the clothes.
Summer means flashing the flesh, trips to the seaside, vibrant colours and fun. Obviously Motel is a brand aimed at girls much younger than me (if I'd ever had bare midriff days, they'd definitely be over!) but if I were ten years younger it's definitely a brand I would look to for eveningwear: in fact, I'm tempted to give that leather peplum pencil skirt a go anyway, and risk looking like mutton dressed as lamb! Motel is like a mecca for gorgeous frocks and separates just perfect for a night on the town.

Are you looking forward to summer yet? Have you started thinking about your spring/summer wardrobe? Or are you still firmly focused on hats, gloves, and wrapping up warm in your winter coat?

Love Tor xx

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Top picks from the clearance at River Island...

Hi guys,
Chaos. Disorganised, untidy, uncohesive chaos: That's the only way I can think to describe the River Island sale on the last occasions I've popped in to check it out. And I can prove it too! Check out how my local store looked the last time I popped in:
This isn't a criticism of River island: almost all sales look like this, and it's not exactly inspiring. But that doesn't mean that you shouldn't still check out the amazing bargains in the River Island sale (they've made their final reductions and some items have more than 70% off) it just means that it probably makes more sense to do it online. Online is my new favourite way to shop: it's so easy and convenient on days when I can't get out of the house. And here are my picks of the best bargains still available on the River Island website right now:
Green floral peplum dress, was £45 now £10
Checked boyfriend coat, was £70 now £20
Purple floral Tshirt dress, was £35 now £7
Leather look studded gilet, was £60 now £20
Floral cut out prom dress, was £55 now £15
Silver zebra print dim hem skirt, was £35 now £7
Black stud front slipper shoes, was £30 now £10
Leopard print brothel creepers, was £28 now £10
Gold block heel ballet pumps, was £45 now £20
Dogtooth wedges, was £90 now £20
Beige wedge ankle boots, was £80 now £20
Stud back ankle boots, was £60 now £30
Black embellished sandals, was £70 now £20
Yellow peep toe heels, was £65 now £20
Lace wedges, was £60 now £30

I'm always amazed by how much winter coats and accessories are reduced by: this is the time of year when my coat addiction reaches its peek, and I am very tempted by that checked one. There are loads of other options over on their website too, but I picked the pieces with the biggest and best discounts.

I know the sales are nearly over and in some cases that means the best of the stock has been sold, but there are still some great bargains to be had and now, when almost all stores are reducing their sale prices yet again, is the best time to shop. Other stores making final reductions are French Connection (stock up to 75% off) and Accessories (all sale now 70% off)

I still want to hear about your sale bargains! What have you picked up? And which shops do you think have had the best sales this sales season?

Love Tor xx

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Daily Wear: My favourite sale bargain so far....

Hi guys,
Sorry for the long absence - we spent New Year's with my parents (we only got back yesterday) and frankly I was having so much fun that I didn't open my computer the whole time I was there!

I also haven't hit as many of the January sales as I was planning to: but I did make time to check out a couple, including Topshop, River Island, and Dorothy Perkins. And my favourite sale purchase (so far) is from the Dorothy Perkins sale, believe it or not: a (p)leather jacket with gold stud detailing reduced to £35. Not the investment buy leather jacket I was looking for, but it fit so nicely I just couldn't resist it! And here it is:
Jacket - Dorothy Perkins, Leopard print dress - River Island, H by Hudson boots - c/o Sarenza, Pucci bag - c/o TK Maxx, Necklaces - vintage and gifted 

You might remember this dress because I picked it up from River Island a couple of months ago in the mid season sales. I seem to be having a real leopard print obsession at the moment: I picked up another leopard print dress and two leopard print tops from the River Island sale last week too!

And if you're wondering why I've shown you the close up of my new gold locket, that would be because my son got it me for Christmas! It has pictures of the three of us (the boy, hubby, and I) inside, and the back is engraved with a special message - too cute for words. I haven't not worn it for a single day since Christmas.

A bit late to ask I know, but better late than never! How was your New Year? And what's your favourite/best sale purchase that you've made so far?

Love Tor x