Closet confessions: Maxime’s colourful collection

I have been wondering for a while whether personal style still exists or if we are all just wearing what is in stores right now. Has fast fashion killed personal style? I don’t think it has. Though some might follow trends blindly and others might do their best to dress as homogenously as possible, when I look at my friends I am confident personal style still exists. To further explore this I am diving into my friends’ wardrobes to celebrate personal style and to make fashion fun again.
To kick this series off we are starting with the girl who taught me what a trend is when I was eight years old. Maxime and I have been inseparable for over 15 years and I was very interested in what she had to say, as well as in what her wardrobe contains. Her colourful clothing collection takes up an entire wall of her bedroom and is filled with prints and graphic details. “I like fashion, I look for pieces that speak to me, usually this means simple but with a twist. Comfort is also very important.”
“When choosing what to wear I take into account what I will be doing that day and what kind of impression I want to give. I start by choosing a top, think about which jeans would work with it and then do the styling with layers. I love a nice cardigan or jacket, autumn and spring are definitely the best seasons to dress for. I finish my look by choosing a cool pair of sneakers. I love sneakers but if I could wear anything I would maybe choose to wear heels more often. I work as part of a production team for a TV show and the days are just too long and active to wear heels. For special occasions however I do enjoy dressing up in a nice dress and some heels to feel special.”
What she said raised two interesting points. Using fashion as part of a conversation, to introduce you and make a particular impression, is often dismissed as frivolous. I think that is a real shame because using what you wear to present yourself in a certain way is a form of self-expression and such a great way to make fashion more personal. If you are trying to not say anything with your clothes the easiest way to do that is to dress like everybody else, and where is the fun in that? The second point is high heeled shoes. Both Maxime and I are partial to a nice heel but also firmly believe that function comes before form in this case. No woman should feel obliged to wear heels, we are not making the boys work in stilts so only wear them if you want to.
“The most special pieces I own belonged to my grandmas. They wore these piece a lot and I am proud to now own them. I used to think that second-hand shopping was not for me but I now believe I just need to get better at it. Some people are so talented at spotting cool finds, I am not there yet. I was in Brussels a few weeks ago and I did find this amazing red vintage blouse and it made me realise that second-hand shopping does feel really good.” 
“I am not a huge fan of receiving fashion items as gifts. Style is so personal that despite me maybe liking a gifted item, I’ll still find that I hardly wear it, which is such a shame. Choosing what someone else would like to wear is so hard, I recommend letting them pick the item out themselves.”
“Young teens seem to be much more focussed on fashion nowadays. I always liked fashion but I don’t think it was as present for my classmates and me. I remember a specific top that I loved during primary school, I thought it made me look so cool and mature, until I went to secondary school. Suddenly the top made me feel childish and I could not wear it anymore. Your environment really influences you style. I still get most of my style inspiration from people around me.”
“One of my favourite fashion memories is our last end of the year party at our primary school. I felt so beautiful wearing jeans with a chain on the side and a white off-the-shoulder top. I had even dyed my hair. I remember that you wore a pretty sparkly dress, funny how we have always contrasted so much.”

Hope you enjoyed this post, anything I forgot to ask that you would like to know? Leave it as a comment! 

Free Downloadable Nutrient Chart (Vegan!)

Nutrient chart heathy food vitamins

I have created a free downloadable nutrient chart that now proudly sits on my fridge. As a vegetarian I have had many people warn me about not getting enough nutrients in, something I would wave off without a second thought. Now that I am looking into veganism the warnings seem even more severe and I realised I knew nothing about nutrition. My dad is a chef so I have a pretty good gage on what is healthy and what is not but I wanted to delve in further and see if I really did eat as healthily as I thought I did, whether going vegan would cause any problems and if I my diet was lacking anything.

So I created this chart. It lists all the main nutrients and what plant based foods are good sources of them. Having all the ingredients laid out made me realise just how much choice there is for vegans and how restricted I have been eating. Some nutrients are hard to avoid others are hard to come by; B12 being an extreme case. My sources seemed to disagree about whether sea vegetables are a source, some even saying you can’t find a plant based source for B12. I am not sure who to believe but either way after hearing dietitian Lisa Steltenpool talk about the dangers of B12 deficiency, I am going to look for some good supplements. I am up for recommendations. (Not just good advice for vegans, meat-eaters have been known to be low on B12 too!)
Nutrient chart heathy food vitamins

In order to make sure I get everything in, I have stuck the chart on my fridge and coated it with a plastic layer, this way I can check off what I have eaten and get a good overview of what I should try and get in. So far this chart has already given me a few ideas for meals to make!Nutrient chart heathy food vitamins

It is important to note that I am in no way an expert in nutrition and that all the information comes from sources I found online that seemed reputable. The nutritional chart is definitely not a strict guide on what to eat, for one, it doesn’t consider necessary intake. I’ll be using it to make sure I eat a bit of everything on a weekly basis but the main reason I made it was just to educate myself a little and I would encourage everybody to do some research of their own. 

Nutrient chart heathy food vitamins

PS: DLG stands for dark leafy greens, think spinach, lettuce and kale

For the Love of DIY

So this was originally going to be a post on what a leather guy can do for you, what your options are and how to ask for something in a way that will get you exactly what you want. This is not what this post turned out to be for one simple reason, we did it ourselves. In one afternoon two girls with a set of tools updated a bag, repaired two straps, resized a belt, made some shorts and rediscovered what DIY is about.
The plan was to give Megan’s lovely bag a bit of custom flair by adding a little belt as two chains on the side. Using a belt made out of a similar material, we plied open the metal rings slipped the excess bits off and applied the belt to the bag. It was surprisingly easy and I cannot believe we considered paying someone to do this.
It looks so good! So two lessons learned, first if you  If you are ever tired of the look of an item see if you can jazz it up first. Add something you have laying about or snip something off, scary at first but the successes are thrilling and energising!
Secondly do not be scared of just trying something, before you spend money replacing items, getting them repaired or altered have a think. Could I do this? Instead of cycling down to the leather guy, leaving the bag behind and having to pay for the alteration to be done, we just grabbed some tools and had a go. You save time and money and get to make sure it is done right. The way to get exactly what you want is to do it yourself.
DIY Upcyle bag handbag chains fashion update
And Voilà! Here is the updated look with Megan as my lovely model! Doing this simple task I really felt like I rediscovered the magic of DIY. Because of the burst of energy this has given me I’ll be taking on some bigger DIY projects next. Creating something custom for no money at all is such a good feeling, I would love to know about any projects you have taken on or where you get your creative energy from! 
DIY Upcyle bag handbag chains fashion update

Girl's summer holiday in Croatia

I love summer, everything is happier and beautiful when the sun is out. This year I got to spend a week on a girls trip to Hvar, Croatia. In the pictures below we are all wearing Nobody’s Child a brand I have recently discovered and am telling everybody about; their clothing is ethically manufactured, super cute and at a price point anybody can afford. I recommend checking out their gorgeous Instagram account. Habba and Seema posted more pictures of our trip on their blogs!

Croatia summer fashion girls HVAR Milna BFF
Croatia summer fashion girls HVAR Milnasummer best friend croatia trip vacation holiday BFF
Sunset Milna maxi dress summer picture floral hvar girls
Sunset Milna maxi dress summer picture floral hvar
summer best friend croatia trip vacation holiday Croatia summer fashion girls HVAR Milna

Find my girls on:

DIY: Happy Notes

Going on an exchange to London was probably one of the best decisions I have ever made. I absolutely loved it, I made friends for life and learned so much. But one things it was not, was easy. Especially leaving home is hard and being away from friends and family can bring you down so in order to cure those inevitable little homesick moments I asked my friends to make me happy notes before I left. Happy notes could take any shape or form and it is entirely up to you to design something that will make you smile. They make great mementos or a lovely gift.

Before going on my exchange I made a questionnaire for my friends to fill out and then seal in an envelope at a dinner party I threw. The idea being that if I was having a bad day I could open an envelope. I wont post any of the filled out forms I received but I will share the blank template and some tips.

Overall it worked out great, watching my friends secretly fill in and decorate their letters was a lot of fun and it also gave me some time to prepare the last course of our meal. Having the happy notes in my bag was also a pleasant reassurance when leaving the country and reading a note could really turn an evening around. The few times I opened an envelope I would pick one at random and usually just looking at the drawings on the envelope would make me smile.

I loved getting a varied mix of responses from both friends I am super close with and those I do not know as well, the combination results in a very surprising mix. I would recommend to bring stickers for your friends to decorate their letters and let them go crazy with them, they make everything more fun. Asking my friends for cooking ideas was super helpful and I recommend it highly for those who are moving out for the first time. If you have notes left unopened save them for the trip home; it'll help pass the time.

You could of course ask your friends to just write you a letter before you leave. Another cute idea is to make happy notes and in secret ask a bunch of friends and family members to fill it out and give the bundle as a gift for someone who is leaving or has a significant birthday coming up. Click here to see the one I made two years ago for some inspiration.

DIY Bring your Tumblr to life with custom stickers

Everybody loves stickers. Combine stickers with Tumblr and what do you get? The best thing ever, that is what you get.

I just got a new diary and wanted to add a bit of personality to it, as well as just have some fun, so I decided to turn some of my favourite Tumblr and Pinterest images into stickers. I love adding a bit of my personal style to the things I own so this was perfect, and sooo easy!

You only need one thing for this DIY which is sticker paper, I had some that was already divided into 8 rectangles so I had to take that into account when printing my stickers but I recommend using full A4 sheets. I combined images I had saved on Pinterest and Tumblr with some cute phrases I wrote out in different fonts, but this is where you could customise it entirely to your taste. Once you have set up your sheet just print it, cut out your stickers and start sticking!

If you like the images I used and would prefer to use these instead of making your own, click here to download a pdf that you can print yourself. Another option is to print your images on regular paper and use glue if you do not want to buy sticker paper. Although I do prefer the neat finish the stickers give. Either way, I hope you have fun!