My Best Buys of 2016 & CLC World Travel Centre Competition

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2016 marked a real style evolution for me. I’ve been into clothes and fashion for a long time now, even to the point that I can’t remember ever wanting to work in any other industry, however I did really struggle with defining my own style. I knew I loved wearing and buying clothes, and keeping up with all the different trends, but I couldn’t put my finger on what style defined me. But, in 2016 I feel like I really grew into my own sense of style. I learned that I love pieces that are more chic and timeless and throughout last year I really started to invest in some key wardrobe items, which I know I can wear for so many years to come.

One of my favourite items that I purchased in 2016, when it comes to a really key piece that I will be able to wear for so many years to come and it will always be in my wardrobe, is this tailored black blazer from Ted Baker. As soon as I saw this is in the John Lewis sale, I instantly fell in love with the look of the piece and how it’s really well tailored but still not too formal. It looks amazing paired with a casual outfit, to add a bit of smart edge, or a bit more dressed up, for a more important occasion. I also really love the patterned lining, it looks so pretty, when it just pop’s out, when I’m wearing the blazer open. It’s one of my best buys of 2016, because it’s so well made, tailored amazingly and fit’s me like a glove.

The best purchase I made in 2016 that was sparkly and perfect for many special occasions, to come over the next few years, is this gorgeous A-Line Karen Millen Dress. This was the piece I wore for my 18th birthday, and so it has so many amazing memories attached to it, but it also fit’s so well to my body shape, it elongates my legs and flatters my waist really well. I love the leather panelled detail, on the shoulder, and my favourite part has to be all the gold sequins around the waist. It’s so chic, but also really timeless and a piece I can wear over and over again.

This last item I suppose is a bit of a cheat, because I actually only bought these in the recent Christmas sales, however I’m really loving them at the moment and I think they are one of my favourite purchases of 2016. It’s this lovely pair of patent mulberry Chelsea boots, from M&S. I just really love boots in the winter, and especially in 2016 I really embraced the fact that I’m tall and that a bit of a heel makes you look just that little bit more feminine and elegant. So, these Chelsea boots are perfect for adding a bit of colour to a plain outfit, or just partnering a statement boot with a variety of different outfits for college and work. I’m really into a good statement boot, and I love the way these add a bit of class and femininity to the classic winter outfit of jeans and a jumper.

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So, in a celebration of some of my best buys from 2016, I’m also running a competition with CLC World Travel Centre for you to be able to win a £25 voucher to spend at the Birmingham Bullring. As I really love shopping and constantly building a new wardrobe, I wanted to give you the chance to be able to win a voucher to spend in one of the East Midlands biggest shopping centre’s, in collaboration with CLC Travel Centre. You’ll be able to find that latest designer bag in Selfridges, buy some gorgeous new underwear from Boux Avenue or Victoria Secret or even buy a new phone, from Vodaphone or EE. The bullring has it all, and you have a chance to win a £25 voucher to put towards something new for you or a lovely person in your life.

How do I enter? All you need to do is follow CLC World Travel on Twitter, @clcworld,  and follow me @RachLydia on twitter as well. Then you simply need to comment on this blog post which CLC resort you would like to visit the most. The competition will open today at 7PM and close at 7PM on Sunday 29th of January. The winner will then be posted on all my social media channels, on the following Monday 3oth January 2017. Make sure to be following me on Twitter, Instagram and ‘like’ my Facebook Page. Good Luck!

T’s & C’s: The entrant(s) must be aged 18 or over. Proof of identity and age may be required. The competition opens on the 8th January 2017 and ends at 7PM on the 29th January 2017. Entries that are incomplete, illegible, indecipherable, duplicated or which contain profanity will not be valid and deemed void. Prizes will be posted to the winner within 7 days of them providing their postage details.Confirmation of the prize will be made in writing/via online correspondence to the winner.

Rachel x

My Favourite Jewellery Pieces & Current Trends for 2017

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Jewellery is an accessory I’ve really grown into wearing over the last few years. Before that I was never really into wearing lot’s of jewellery, I barely even wore a watch despite having a set of jewellery that I wear every single day without fail. However, as my collection has started to grow and I’ve gain some more investment pieces, my love for jewellery has also grown. As I’ve grown up my jewellery taste really reflects my taste in clothing, and I love simple classic pieces that are really timeless and I’ll be able to wear for so many years.

Two of the pieces that are most treasured in my collection, have to be my gorgeous Tiffany necklace and my mixed metal one from Links London. I love how they both have a mixture of rose gold and silver, and are a really classic and simple shape. I love how the Tiffany one if so iconic, is able to be worn with any outfit for any occasion and also has a lovely, key to my heart vibe. It’s such an investment piece and something I’ll be able to wear for the rest of my life. Similarly, my Links London one is also a really lovely mixed metal and is two circle’s entwined in each other. I love how chic it is, how I can wear it both casually and with a more dressy outfit, and be able to have it in my collection for years to come. This looks so gorgeous on and I’ll always treasure it as one of my favourite 18th birthday presents.

Rings are one of my latest loves and a piece of jewellery that I’m obsessed with wearing. They’ve even become part of my everyday go-to jewellery pieces and I’m love with how they add something extra to an outfit. In particular, two of my favourite rings have to be my opal ones, which are something that I’ve always wanted to have for a long time. Opal is my birth stone and I’ve just always wanted to have a jewellery piece that really showcase’s how beautiful the stone is and celebrates me and when I was born. I’ve really struggled to find opal rings that are set in a modern way and don’t look old fashioned, and these two silver ones in my collection are two nicest one’s I’ve ever seen. Again, I love how classic and chic these rings are, how they will always be in fashion and can be in my collection for years to come.

A good watch is something that you always need in your collection, and mine from Armani Exchange has to be one of my favourite. I love how the gold and white leather create a really chic and luxe vibe, and will always look super fashionable. It goes with so many different outfit’s and the addition of the gems, on the clock face, make it super glamourous and is totally me. I love to always look glamourous and get dressed up, and this watch is the perfect match for me and my very chic style. However, I really need to a watch battery in this and actually start wearing it again, because I really love it.

Current Jewellery Trends

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Even though I really love chic and dainty jewellery, which I can wear everyday; I also love a good statement piece to glam up a basic outfit. They instantly add a focus point to an outfit and are great when you need to transfer from day to night, or want to comfortable but still glam. I’ve written all about one of my favourite statement necklaces, in my party wear accessories post HERE.

Chokers

Chokers had a real comeback in 2016 and in 2017 it will be no different. The skinny choker in particular looks super chic and stylish, and can instantly add a more edgy vibe to a feminine outfit. My favourite one’s have to be metallic or super skinny and velvet, however I’ve not really incorporated them into my own style yet and would love to experiment with them in 2017.

Statement Ear Cuff

Earring’s are something I love to wear and really can’t live without, to complete my outfit. So, a statement ear cuff is a trend I really like and I love how it can add a sense of glam and intricacy to an outfit. They look really feminine and girly and have been super popular on the catwalk. So, why don’t you try pairing a good statement ear cuff with an everyday outfit, to glam it up a bit?

Rachel x

My Favourite Moments of 2016

My Best Moments of2016

Well 2016, what a year it was. It really was an absolutely crazy year full of so many new adventures, amazing moments and memories that I will always treasure. I lived the last years of my childhood and started my life as an adult, I had some amazing AS results that I was really proud of and also kicked off my dream to travel the world, by visiting the one and only New York city. It has to be one of the fastest year’s yet, it really has just flown by, but it really was amazing and I’ll treasure so many moments of it.

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This Blog- Blogging is always a highlight to every year of my life that goes by. I’m so proud to say that I’ve run this little place on the internet for another year and have been able to continue to share my love for fashion and affordable style, through this little place on the internet. However, this year has to be extra special, as I finally took the plunge to get my own domain name and invest in a blog design that I’ve always dreamt of. I wrote a post all about it, which you can go and have a read of HERE.

Having my own domain name has opened so many doors, when it comes to how my blog looks visually, but also creatively and through the content I produce and the brands that I work with. It’s pushed me to create content I love, look beyond the stereotypical blogging box and try to run this blog by my own rules. All I can say is that I’ve really fallen back in love with blogging as 2016 drew to a close, and I can’t wait to see what it brings in 2017.

AS Results- 2016 marked the second year that I had to go through the awful experience of results day. It’s not because I’ve had bad experiences at them or got bad grades, but I just hate all the anticipation behind it and the seeing so many unhappy faces, as you look around the room. However, all my anticipation wasn’t necessary as all my hard work and revision paid off, and I got results I’m still really proud of; 2 A’s and 2 C’s. I never thought I would get an A in anything at A-Level, and to get in design, which is the career I want to go into, made it even better. It really gave me the push to work super hard to finish my A-Levels and apply to uni.

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Travel- I’ve always wanted to travel around the world. I really want to see everything it has to offer; experience different cities, cultures and ultimately be able to have memories that I can treasure for a lifetime. So, 2016 was the year that my adventure’s began and I finally got to travel outside of the EU, all the way to New York City. The trip was to celebrate my 18th birthday and it has to be one of the most amazing holiday’s I’ve ever been on. It’s such a bustling city, constantly full of noise, and there’s something to do every where you turn. It really is like no other place I’ve ever been to and you can read all about my trip HERE.

Turning 18- October 2016 marked the final year of my childhood and my transition into adulthood. I can’t believe that I’m now officially an adult, and I’m able to buy alcohol, go out partying and just finally not be considered as a child. It’s weird knowing that I’m now responsible for myself, and I can’t get my mum to ring up and book my appointments, even though I still do, but it’s so good to have more freedom and to not have any restrictions. Now all I need to do is pass my driving test, and I’ll finally be able to drive myself around in 2017, and there will be no more need for my mum’s personal taxi service.

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2016 has been a great year for meeting new people and also making all my friendships even stronger. I’ve spent time with both of my two friendship groups, from my old high school and the one from my new college, and have so many amazing memories with both of them. We’ve been to parties, had sleep over’s, girl’s nights and had so many laughs. I’ve also met another really amazing friend at work, that I know will always be in my life and I’m sure one day we will both be old and grey together. I’ve loved getting to know her little girl and I can’t wait to see her grow and develop in life.

I honestly don’t know what I do without them all by my side and I know I have found friends for life, who put up with all my drama’s, ranting and endless obsession with clothes and makeup palette’s. So, thank you Sasha, Holly, Lauren, Beth and Eleanor, for being the most amazing best friends.

I hope you’ve all had an amazing new year and here’s to an amazing 2017.

Rachel x