Friday, 29 June 2012

What's On: Christian Louboutin At The Design Museum

Last weekend I visited the Christian Louboutin Retrospective at the Design Museum in London. Louboutin is my favourite shoe designer, I'd love to own a pair of his iconic red soles one day! I love his work from his classic black patent pumps to his outlandish sequin and spiked heels. 

The exhibition charts Louboutin's career and celebrates 20 years of his famous shoes. In 1981 Louboutin began working at Folies Bergere, the famous Paris music hall as an assistant to the dancers. In his spare time he'd sketch shoes for the girls. Louboutin was inspired by showgirls and their lavish costumes which are reflected in his theatrical feathered and bow designs. 

His shoes also reflect his passion for films and Hollywood screen starlets including Marlene Dietrich and Bette Davis. He saw them as survivors who could take on the world. He designs shoes for women's inner showgirl. He uses materials including veiling, chiffon, mesh, brocade and ribbon which increase the illusion of transparency and believes shoes should undress rather than dress leaving the foot as the object of desire. 

A giant shoe carousel displays some of his most famous designs and shows pictures charting his career with those who have influenced him along the way. You can see some of his most celebrated designs from the last 20 years including the Lady Page from his AW '09 collection, based on pin up model Betty Page the shoe is entirely curved reflecting women's femininity. Also on display are the shoes he created for YSL in 2002 for their last runway show featuring the YSL insignia in crystals, this was the only time another name joined the YSL house. 

At the centre of the exhibition you can sit in a giant shoe theatre and watch a holographic performance of burlesque star Dita Von Teese turn into a sparkling Louboutin shoe. There's also a Fetish section featuring a series of shoes created for an exhibition with artist and film maker David Lynch in Paris in 2007. 

Louboutin collaborated with Swarovski and the English National Ballet last year creating 8 inch heel ballet shoes. He believed these ultimate heels made dancers closer to the sky and therefore closer to heaven. The exhibition explores how his shoes are created from his initial sketches to the manufacturing process.

In celebration of 20 years as one of the most renowned high fashion shoe designers Louboutin released an anniversary collection earlier this year featuring 20 shoes, one for each year of his success. He was also invited by legendary Parisian cabaret 'Crazy Horse' to design 4 new tableaux.

The exhibition runs at the Design Museum in London until July 9th.

Are you a Louboutin fan? 
Have you visited the exhibition yet? 


Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Summer Saviours

During the summer months I tend to wear flip flops as much as possible. I love Havaianas flip flops and find them really comfy. The only problem is the weather, being caught in a downpour in flip flops is far from fun as I've learnt on numerous occasions! 

I was really excited to see at the Yellowdoor AW12 press day back in April that Havaianas have launched a possible solution to this! Their new collection of ballerina flats and espadrilles have the same rubber sole as their traditional flip flops, meaning you still have the comfort of the flip flop base whilst keeping your feet dry!

Their summer collection is available in a range of bright colours for the season.

What do you think of Havaianas new designs? 


Monday, 25 June 2012

Tried and Tested... Benefit Ultra Plush Lip Gloss: Coralista

Benefit are launching a new range of ultra plush lip glosses this week to compliment their popular box o' powders. I kindly received the Coralista shade when attending a recent Benefit bloggers event. I've wanted to buy the Coralista box o'powder for a while now and this lip gloss has made me want it even more! 

Like lots of Benefit products the lip glosses smell amazing! Coralista has a gorgeous fruity scent. The lip glosses come in squeezable tubes with a slanted tip making them easy to apply and glide on silky smooth. 

I usually hardly ever wear lip gloss, mainly because I find them too sticky and hate it when my hair gets stuck to my lips! Since getting this one I keep finding myself reaching for it.. partly because I seem to be addicted to the scent but also because it's got a lovely light texture and is not at all sticky like other lip glosses. 

Coralista is a sheer coral shade. The colour is quite bright when swatched, I thought being quite pale it might look a bit harsh on me but when applied to my lips it looks quite subtle and is very wearable for everyday use. 

There's 5 other lip glosses in the collection, Hoola is a shimmering golden nude, Dandelion is a soft pearly pink, Dallas is a dusty rose shade, Sugarbomb is a shimmering pinky nude, and Bella Bamba is a sheer bright watermelon colour.

The lip glosses will be on sale from Thursday and retail at £13.50.

Will you be trying Benefit's new lip glosses? 
Are you a fan of their box o'powders


Friday, 22 June 2012

Festival Fashion

I'm really looking forward to going to Radio 1's Hackney Weekend on Sunday! I'm so excited to see Florence and the Machine and Rihanna performing!

I haven't been to a festival in years and of course the question of what to wear was one of the first things that popped into my head! I love festival fashions, especially all the gorgeous boho inspired styles in the shops at the moment, though it can be tricky to decide what to wear with this unpredictable weather! I plan to wear a dress with my new floral print wellies that I recently got at Tesco... but look like they could be from Cath Kidston! I'll be making sure to take my parka too in case it rains... please all cross your fingers for me that it's dry this weekend and that Hackney doesn't turn into a mud bath ala Glastonbury!

If you're heading to a festival this summer a cross body bag is ideal so you can keep your eyes on your belongings and have your hands free. Don't forget to take essentials like tissues and sun cream!

I've put together some festival themed outfits to inspire you if you're heading to any festivals over the summer! You don't want to be wearing your most expensive jewellery to a festival in case it gets lost but you can still have fun and accessorise with chunky jewellery, stacked bracelets and headbands. There's no better excuse to wear your brightest colours and prints! 

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Primark A/W 12

Primark is one of my favourite places to go for updating your wardrobe with the season's latest trends on a budget. I can't wait for their new Autumn/Winter line to hit the shops. The new season collection is full of bright pops of colour, gorgeous prints and some fabulous shoes and accessories.

Studded shoes are everywhere at the moment and I'm sure these studded slippers at just £12.00 will be popular! Boucle jackets and dresses always remind me of Blair Waldorf's classic and preppy style in 'Gossip Girl.' Snap up one of Primark's Boucle offerings to pay homage to a bit of Upper East Side style at a fraction of the price! I'm a big fan of detailed collars. They really transform a plainer shirt into looking like it's hot off the catwalk! These ones from Primark remind me of some I saw in Zara recently. 

Everything shown here is under £30.00!

1. Ombre Sleeveless Shirt - £12.00
2. Yellow Boucle Dress - £26.00
3. Studded Slippers - £12.00
4. Neon Mesh Jumper - £12.00
5. Pink Blazer - £15.00
6. Turquoise Clutch - £6.00

7. Yellow Peplum Top - £10.00
8. Midnight Blue Sheer Shirt with Pearl Collar - £12.00
9. Purple Metal Collar Tip Shirt - £6.00
10. Pearl and Spike Necklace - £10.00
11. Printed Trousers - £14.00
12. Boucle Jacket - £26.00

13. Floral Shirt - £12.00
14. Metallic Cage Heels - £18.00
15. Heart Print Playsuit - £12.00
16. Contrast Blazer - £12.00
17. Jacquard Trousers - £16.00
18. Contrast Tote - £8.00

19. Chain Quilted Slippers - £8.00
20. Pink Lace Cut Out Shirt - £10.00
21. Patterned Pencil Skirt - £10.00
22. Polka Dot Shirt with Studded Collar - £12.00
23. Yellow Boucle Zipped Jacket - £26.00
24. Pearl and Spike Bracelet - £4.00

View the full collection at Look

What do you think of their new season collection?


Monday, 18 June 2012

Pandora Bracelets

I've often admired friends Pandora bracelets and love the idea of collecting charms that signify special times and having a piece of jewellery that you can add to at different stages throughout your life. Their bracelets are ideal gifts and would make a lovely present for a special birthday like a 21st which you could then add to with a charm each year.

These Pandora bracelets are some of my favourites from their collection

Their sterling silver threaded bracelet is the perfect starting point for your charm collection. Its classic design is timeless and you can select from different sizes to find the perfect fit for your wrist. As well as the traditional style silver bracelet Pandora offer braided leather bracelets in a variety of colours which make a great alternative for displaying your charms. The woven leather style is available in a single or a double creating a wrap effect. They look great stacked with other bracelets or worn alone. These soft leather bracelets are ideal for wearing everyday and have a summer boho vibe to them! 

Pandora has charms starting from a reasonably priced £20.00. Their range of charms are ideal for celebrating significant events and remembering special times with charms to mark special occasions including birthdays, Christmas, graduations and holidays. You can add coloured and patterned glass beads to customise your bracelet and update it for the season to match your wardrobe! They have spacer beads and clips designed to hold your charms in place so you can ensure your bracelet looks perfect.

The vintage style dainty teacup would make a lovely addition to a charm bracelet, it'd be a great charm to give as a present alongside a special afternoon tea treat! I love the simple design of the rose charm, it'd look great on a bracelet on its own or sit well alongside other charms. The purse charm would be ideal for any handbag fanatic like myself! 

Do you have a Pandora bracelet?
Which is your favourite style?

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Friday, 15 June 2012

Summer with Havaianas

In celebration of National Flip Flop Day today I'm featuring my favourite flip flops, Havaianas! Since I was first introduced to the brand a few years ago it's fair to say I've become a Havaianas addict! They are by far the comfiest flip flops I've tried and don't hurt your feet even after a long day of sightseeing on holiday. The first pair I bought a few years ago are still going strong but I can't seem to resist buying a new pair each summer to keep up with the latest styles. They're continuously updating their colour range and introducing new patterns in line with the latest trends. They're a celebrity favourite too with many stylish stars including Blake Lively often spotted wearing them. 

Havaianas are available in their classic Brasil design, metallic colours, with slim style straps, patterned bases and their new colour mix designs. I also love the new style of criss cross straps I saw on display from Havaianas latest collection at the Yellowdoor A/W 12 press day  back in April. Their flip flops start from £16.00.

50th Anniversary Limited Edition Havaianas - £35.00

In celebration of their 50th anniversary this week Havaianas have created limited edition flip flops. This special edition retails at £35.00 with 100% of the net sales being donated to UNICEF to support further projects in Brazil. Only 50,000 pairs have been produced worldwide. The design is inspired by the trend in the 90s when Havaianas fans looking for new ways to style their flip flops turned the white side downwards leaving the coloured side facing upwards to create a new look. The trend became so popular it led to Havaianas launching their Top collection in a rainbow of colours. 

This summer Havaianas have once again teamed up with Missoni. For both Missoni and Havaianas nature is key, its seasons and changing colours inspire their designs. This new mini collection has been created using leftover rubber pieces from the manufacturing process to reduce waste. The multicoloured leftovers have been emblazed with Missoni's famous zig-zag patterns. The 'Missoni loves Havaianas' collection shares the two iconic brands flair for fashion and brings chic style to your feet. The collection will be available from the end of this month and prices start at £50.00

Are you a Havaianas fan?
What's your favourite style of flip flops?


Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Father's Day Gift Guide

With Father's Day fast approaching (..this Sunday for anyone who's forgotten!)  I've compiled a selection of gift ideas that suit a range of interests to help if you're stuck for what to get your dad. 

I always find dad's can be quite tricky to shop for, you don't want to end up buying them another pair of socks and it can be hard to think of something other than chocolates... although I don't think you can go too wrong with the Whisky Truffles

If your dad enjoys meals out how about this Restaurant Journal which contains sections to record restaurant reviews.

One for the technology loving dads out there, this Phone Handset can plug into their phone and has a stylish and retro vibe.

If your dad is a beer fan, this Good Beer Guide 2012 produced by CAMRA could be the ideal gift, maybe take him for a pint too at one of their suggested best pubs! 

What will you be treating your dad to this weekend?


Monday, 11 June 2012

Benefit Event

Last week I was lucky enough to attend a bloggers event with Benefit. Benefit have fast become one of my favourite make up brands over the last few years. With each new product I try my love for them grows!  I was really excited to have the opportunity to find out more about the brand and some of their latest products! 

The event was held at Bar Fibre in Leeds, a perfect setting for an afternoon filled with make-up, delicious cakes and chat with lots of wonderful bloggers. 

The lovely Michelle and Leanne gave us an insight into the company and its history explaining how its roots in 1970s San Francisco are still reflected in Benefit's ethos today. Founded in 1976 by the Ford twins Benefit has grown into a global brand. The free spirited attitudes of the 1970s free love moment is conveyed through Benefit's playful and chilled out nature. They strive to push boundaries and look at things from a new angle to bring unique products to the market. I've always been attracted by their fun packaging and the feel good vibe surrounding the brand. Their bright coloured little boxes express their fun loving side with their playful product names and speech bubbles. 

Benefit are holding a Mascarathon charity relay run to raise money for Refuge, the national domestic violence charity which provides help and support for women and children escaping domestic violence. It starts in Edinburgh this Friday, ending in London two weeks later. Each runner taking part will cover a 2 mile stint running with the giant mascara wand covering over 500 miles in total. You can still sign up to take part by clicking here. A Benebago will accompany runners offering prizes and goodies along the way. Numerous celebrities have pledged their support and will be taking their turn at running along the route including Caroline Flack, Jorgie Porter, Alison Hammond and Lauren Laverne. You can find out more including ways to donate here
There's other ways you can get involved and show your support, Benefit will be offering a donation barcode where you can add an optional £1 donation to your purchase. Keep a lookout for the colourful donation boxes at Benefit counters. They also have a special Mascarathon Ebay Shop where you can bid on exclusive gifts and experiences including a behind the scenes tour at Benefit head office in the UK! 

We were also treated to a special sneak preview of their new Box O' Powder lip glosses launching at the end of the month. These plush glosses come in squeezy tubes meaning they glide on extra smooth. Everyone agreed that they smelt amazing! They match Benefit's bestselling Box O' Powders. The lip glosses will be available from 28th June and retail at £13.50. Look out for my upcoming blog post where I'll be featuring the various lip gloss shades available and my review coming soon! 

The gorgeous Adele from the Benefit counter at Debenhams White Rose in Leeds talked us through Benefits skincare range which I can't wait to try! Adele introduced us to the 3 P's, Prep, Prime and Perfect! She showed us how to prepare the skin by cleansing, how to tone and moisturise, and use primer before applying make up. Benefit strives to ensure every customer receives a thorough consultation and is treated to a pampering experience!

I always get distracted looking at all the make up I want to buy when I'm at their counters and had neglected to sample their perfumes until now. I've been missing out.. they smell amazing! My favourite scent has to be 'my place or yours Gina' which has an oriental style seductive scent with wild raspberries and white lily.  

With Gemma & Rachel
(photo courtesy of Gemma)

I had a great time at the event and it was lovely to finally meet Gemma and Rachel who both have fabulous blogs you should check out! 
Thanks to Benefit and MichelleLeanne and Adele for a wonderful afternoon! We were kindly given a very generous goodie bag so watch out for lots of upcoming product reviews! 

And finally... a little treat for you! The first 30 people to visit the Benefit counter at House of Fraser in Leeds will receive a free gift with a purchase. Just mention 'Caroline's Catwalk'  Until 30th June. 


Friday, 8 June 2012

H&M for WaterAid

As well as collaborating with numerous designer brands over the past few years producing sell out collections H&M also work with a selection of charities including WaterAid since 2002 raising money to help projects that support sustainable water resources. Last week they launched a new collection for WaterAid with 25% of the sales price from each item being donated to the charity. 

The collection features tropical prints with palm trees and bold floral designs which create a relaxed summer look. There's a range of wardrobe staples alongside swimwear, summer skirts and tied tops perfect for your summer holidays. There's also a menswear and children's collection. 

There's a vintage vibe to the collection with cat eye shaped sunglasses and cropped tops. The swimwear also has a vintage feel with retro cut designs offering a more flattering fit to curvy figures. The floral necklace is an ideal accessory if you want to add a touch of the tropical trend to your outfit without wearing bold printed pieces. 

The collection is available online and in selected stores

Are you a fan of tropical prints? 
Have you bought anything from the collection? 


Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Sunglasses Style

The recent spell of warmer weather in the UK has left me lusting after a new pair of sunglasses for the summer! As well as being a necessity on a sunny day sunglasses can make a style statement. I'd love to save up and treat myself to a pair of designer sunglasses, they're a great luxury investment that you can wear year after year.

Here's a selection of this summers hottest Sunglasses trends and some of my favourite designer pairs.

Burberry BE4044 - £129.95

D&G DD8087/S 501 - £77.95

Oversized sunglasses are my go-to style. They're perfect for protecting your eyes from the sun whilst staying stylish! Oversized designs are a celebrity favourite too with the large frames being the perfect choice for the stars to hide behind!  I love the large square style frames of the Burberry Sunglasses which create a retro 70's inspired look.

Ray Ban RB2140 Original Wayfarer - £82.95

Marc By Marc Jacobs MMJ 201/ SJN1 - £89.95

Wayfarers are my favourite style of Ray Ban Sunglasses. The iconic design has gained popularity since its was developed in the 1950s and their wayfarers are often seen on some of my favourite stylish celebrities.  Rayban are continuously developing their colour range and designing new prints to adorn their frames. I also love these classic brown Marc By Marc Jacobs Wayfarers with a simple star detail in the corner of the frames. 

Tom Ford FT0200 Catherine - £181.95

Ray Ban RB3386 - £82.95

Aviator sunglasses have a timeless design. The classic frame shape will suit most people. Aviators are perfect for creating a relaxed laid back summer look. I love the twisted shape of the frames on the Tom Ford sunglasses. Rayban's legendary aviator sunglasses are another of their most popular designs. 

Cat Eye
Ralph Lauren RL8070 - £92.95

Marc Jacobs MJ 366S - £204.95

Cat Eye Sunglasses are one of this seasons hottest sunglasses styles. Many stars have been spotted trying out the trend including my current style favourite, Fearne Cotton. The pointed frame shape helps to create a vintage inspired look. I love the cute polka dot pattern on the Marc Jacobs Sunglasses. 

Prada PR24LS - £121.95

Versace VE4057 - £93.95

Coloured sunglasses are an ideal accessory to ensure you're fashion forward this summer! Classic shapes have been updated with patterns and bright colours for the season.  I love the pastel lilac shade of these Prada Sunglasses. The bright pink Versace frames are great for adding a pop of colour to your outfit. Versace's sunglasses collection is in keeping with their couture style with bold designs reflecting their unique style. 

Are you a fan of designer sunglasses?
What's your favourite sunglasses style? 

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