Monday, 26 January 2015

The devil is in the detail.

Coat, Top, Socks & Shoes - Topshop
Trousers - Asos
Bag - Versace
Necklace - Vivienne Westwood
Lipstick - Revlon

Sure, looking good at a distance is important since that's how most people will see you, and that is why an ensemble is exactly that - an outfit that works well together. But in this regard I think an outfit is like a painting: from far away it could seem beautiful, but if you get close up and see blank spots, rushed drawing or badly covered mistakes you are less likely to remember it. So it follows that when it comes to outfits it's not just the big picture that counts, and that the mark of a truly good one is in the detail. I've always been one for attention to detail, and I'm counting my lucky stars because it means that I always look put together and that my outfits are generally very finished, cohesive and interesting (I hate blowing my own trumpet but it's true!). Especially now I'm on a tight budget I'm really finding that the smallest changes to an outfit can totally revitalise it, and can also take it from day to night or winter to spring.

This outfit is all about the detail for me, because while the floral print trousers are the only real standout piece at a distance the simple pairing of a monochromatic top and coat allowed me to go to town on my accessories. My statement necklace is a personal favourite (I'm so glad I have such a selection of jewellery now I can't afford many new clothes!), and with my beautiful Versace handbag it adds a touch of luxe to an otherwise eclectic ensemble. Then get even closer and spot my newest footwear - gorgeous holographic sandals I've been itching to get my hands on for months! I've even made them winter-friendly with some cute pastel socks. I do feel like I'm really bigging myself up here, but surely that's what showing off a look is all about? Details are a great way to revamp clothes on a budget, while also making you look put together and like you've made a lot more effort than you probably have - case in point here since I got ready in 45 minutes!

Tara India xo

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Maximum impact.

Coat & Shoes - Topshop
Maxi Dress - Cow Vintage
Bag - Longchamp
Necklace - Vintage

As a petite girl I've always tended to avoid maxi dresses, not only because they seem to be designed for runway models and elves and usually leave me with fabric pooling around my feet and tripping me on the stairs, but because I worry they'll make me look shorter. I know that not only could I take them up fairly easily (as I do with jeans), but the optical illusion could have the opposite effect and actually add inches, but that doesn't seem to have sunk in. I probably own only two other maxi dresses, both of which inhabit my wardrobe waiting for a braver day.. However, I tried this vintage maxi on and was surprised to find that not only did it fall at a perfect length (which must be some kind of witchcraft!), but the style was flattering since I could use the ties to cinch in my waist and avoid that oh-so-attractive potato sack look. While I struggle to really call this vintage since it is probably no older than I am - and nineties is NOT vintage! - it was a perfect second-hand find, and while I loved layering it up for winter I am looking forward to swishing around in it in summer..

Tara India xo

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Blending in.

Dress, Coat & Shoes - Topshop
Mini Satchel - ASOS
Bracelet - Vintage Swarovski

The term 'fashion chameleon' is often bandied about like it's a good thing, being able to blend in to any fashion trend going and constantly reinvent yourself. And I agree, reinvention can be good, but blending in is never my thing! I'd rather have my own style running through, and let that make me distinctive and individual. I'm not the only one who'd say that my outfits turn heads (and not in a vain way), because I usually pull out all the stops for outfits and attract attention for being brave and often over the top with my ensemble. I'd much rather stand out and know that I look good. Which is why this dress is a small departure from that, with its camouflage hue and simple accessories. I originally wanted a print version of this, but only the green was in my size so I tried something new! And maybe it's blend-in quality makes this dress a stand-out among my usual wardrobe choices..

Tara India xo

Friday, 16 January 2015

If it makes you happy, then do it.

 Coat & Shoes - Topshop
Top - Missguided
Skirt - Vintage
Mini Satchel - ASOS

One of the things I've realised as I've gotten older (I'm going to hit the big 2-1 in April!) is that while growing up increases your reponsibilities, it's okay to still have fun. Yes, money and jobs and studying are all important, but the picture of adult life that is painted these days is quite dull - get a job, settle down, have kids, work until you're 70 odd and hope you don't hate any of it. But I don't think that has to be the case. Teenage years are not necessarily the time of your life, and surrendering your youth does not mean surrendering your enjoyment. If doing something makes you happy, then that's what you should be doing - paying the bills is important, but so is happiness. In today's world it's increasingly important to project a good image, but people are the most beautiful when they're real. I personally think I look like a dork in these photos, but I had more fun posing in the streets with a smile on my face than trying to look cool. For this reason, I'm also making more time for things I enjoy that may not necessarily get me a job, like unleashing my creativity in words, pictures, and through the lens of a camera as well as in front of it. And I think everyone should, because I know too many people who've had "no time" for hobbies and little things that can make this life wonderful. We only get one, and I intend to enjoy mine! So that means if I want to spend my Saturday in bed watching TV I will, if I want to walk around aimlessly toting my camera and hunting for shots I will, and if I want to spend three hours making collages I will. Because in the end I will have a much better life if I am happy, than if I work myself to death.

Anyway, enough of the deep life thoughts - I wanted to share my outfit and ended up sharing what's on my mind. I've said it once and I'll say it again though, this skirt is one of my favourites, especially now I'm letting spring back into my wardrobe!

Tara India xo

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Material girl.

Top, Trousers, Socks & Shoes - Topshop
Coat - New Look
Necklace - Vintage

This outfit is one of my recent favourites, because it is a departure from my current adoration of all things dark - I seem to like my clothes like my coffee, black as my soul haha! But it's a new year and pretty much all that's getting me through this season of rain, wind and practicality is the anticipation of spring, so sometimes I dress like it! This is what I like to think of as springtime monochrome, brightening up some classic black and white with pastels, and of course some vintage bling (this necklace is 1960s).

As I'm sure you've noticed, most of my clothes come from Topshop and most of my jewellery is vintage, and I adore designer labels, champagne and shopping. It's fair to say I've got expensive taste, but right now I face the challenge of having very little money! This means that you'll be seeing a lot of all the clothes I already own (don't get bored of me!) while I use my dollar to live on! I actually welcome this challenge because it inspires creativity, and I like to re-imagine ways to wear items, and reinvent the aesthetic of older pieces. When I get a bit better at this I'll post a few tips for reinventing your wardrobe without spending much money!

Tara India xo

Friday, 9 January 2015

Bring on Spring!

Top & Shorts - Missguided
Coat & Shoes - Topshop
Bag - Versace
Earrings - Vivienne Westwood
Lipstick - Mac

Being the lucky (and definitely not spoiled!) girl that I am, Mum treated me to a few things online this Christmas, including these Missguided shorts. I love playing with texture so the lace underlay intrigued me, and so did the rich wine-red hue – but I rarely wear shorts so I was unsure how to style them at first. I ended up going fairly simple, playing up to my current love for black and adding an extra texture with my faux fur collared biker jacket. As much as I love this gorgeous staple coat (thankyou Topshop), I have to say that now Christmas is over and we’re into the new year, I’m very much over winter and coats and bundling up. I’m dreaming of the day when one pair of tights will be enough, when I won’t have to cover every outfit with a coat so I don’t risk hypothermia, and when it stops being so dark at 5pm that I lose track of what is evening and what is night! Winter may be cosy, and coats and jumpers may be snuggly, but I’m a summer girl at heart. So roll on Spring as soon as possible!

Tara India xo

Monday, 5 January 2015

Vintage and Versace.

Coat & Top - Topshop
Skirt - Vintage
Ankle Boots - New Look
Bag - Versace

This post proudly centres on probably my favourite Christmas present (although I did get some gorgeous jewellery and a new camera and VS clothes!), which is a Versace handbag! It's not totally new since it came by way of my grandmother, but she's used it all of twice and it even has more backstory now - when her husband bought it for her in Milan they told him the price and he asked 'what about the 30% discount?', and obviously it was already including the discount.. Suffice it to say I love this bag for being classic, timeless, and high quality, as well as the cute lions on the straps and zipper that keep it totally Donatella. Of course, I never could have bought it myself since it is definitely real skin, but I couldn't turn down a present.. For its debut I paired it with a fairly simple outfit, focussing on the bag and its contrast to the soft pink of my vintage skirt.

Of course, I'll be the first to say that just because something is expensive doesn't mean it is worth it! Every time I see someone out in a designer tracksuit that probably costs more than my rent for 6 months I cringe - with all the beautiful items out there, why that?! Just because the price tag is killer, doesn't mean the object is. I'd only ever buy something designer if I liked it! Labels are fine, but vintage and high street can be equally beautiful. You can't buy style - it comes in how you compose your outfits.

Tara India xo

Thursday, 1 January 2015

All dressed up with no place to go!

Dress - Topshop
Shoes - Iron Fist
Necklace - Swarovski
Bracelet - Vintage Trifari

This is exactly how I wanted to look on Christmas Day and New Year's Eve, if I had somewhere to go that is! Classy, glamorous, with an edgy twist, this Topshop dress is simple yet stunning and easy to accessorize - I believe my words upon trying it on were 'Do I like it? It's like 1940s nightwear, of course I love it!'. However, since I spent Christmas Day working (10 hours, split shift) I stuck to my guns of overdressing by wearing this ensemble to eat our Christmas roast between shifts! 

Last night for NYE I was sipping prosecco in my PJs and watching TV, which is my traditional way to spend it, but if I had somewhere to go I would have looked like this! New Year is always cited as the time for turning over a new leaf, and while I disagree slightly – a fresh start can come at any time, who really needs a specific date to make a change? – it still provokes in me a certain level of reflection upon the year past, and thought over what I hope to achieve in the year to come. I always find myself making lists, because getting things down in writing is the only way to arrange my thoughts, so I hope you won’t mind me sharing a few reflections. 

The last year has been full of trials and tribulations, of joys and sorrows, and while I may not be entirely happy with how some things have turned out I wouldn’t change a thing. I’ve gone through intense emotions, break-ups, bereavements and personal difficulties. But the past is in the past, and I believe that while we can learn from it, there is no point in dwelling upon it. So for next year I have high hopes, and just a few goals. I’m not one for resolutions (I find they set me up for failure!), but here are a few things I intend to do: keep my blog up and running and explore my creativity through clothes; go on at least one holiday because travel is one of my main passions; and develop my writing as best I can, continuing to refine my poetry and hopefully write the novel I’ve been trying to create for years!

And that's my reflective phase over for this season - I hope all your Christmases and New Year's were beautiful, and you're now full of roast dinners, chocolate and love!

Tara India xo