Duchess Kate continues the recycling at Anglesey Marathon

For fans of the Duchess of Cambridge and her super style, a treat was in store today. Kate, along with Prince William,  made her first official appearance since the birth of Prince George at the Ring O’Fire Coastal Ultra Marathon on Anglesey.

Before the appearance there had been a lot of speculation about what Kate would wear, with Hello Magazine’s Rosie Nixon pondering on whether it would be another Seraphine dress. I thought Kate would opt for something more low key due to the sporty nature of the event, maybe channeling the style she did so well during the London Olympics last year. I was proved right with Kate opting for the skinny jeans and blazer combination that she works so well.

Kate opted for her Ralph Lauren wool jacket in sage green, teamed with a Zara patterned top and a pair of skinny jeans from Paige Denim. All of the items had been seen before, which was no surprise as Kate is well known for recycling her clothes. Perfect for the occasion, this was the epitome of smart/casual and showed that lucky Kate is already back in her skinny jeans (still remembering Miranda in her skinny jeans episode of Sex and the City – think it took a lot longer than Kate!)
All Kate’s items are from past seasons, but you can get the look with items that are online and in store now.
The Jacket
A green blazer makes a great alternative to navy or black. I’ve found a couple of great alternatives to Kate’s at two different price points.

Gerry Weber Blazer – green £170 click to visit Zalando

Designer khaki mini cord blazer

The Top

Kate’s Zara top is now out of stock, but there are plenty of pretty tops available to get a similar look. Dorothy Perkins has a great range, and these tops are a great way to elongate your summer style just that little bit longer. The style of the top from the Avenue 57 shop is very similar to the one that Kate is wearing.

Green spotty peplum top Price: £24.00 click to visit Dorothy Perkins

Black geo print top Price: £25.00 click to visit Dorothy Perkins

Cream printed vest top Price: £22.00 click to visit Dorothy Perkins

Sophia Spotty Silk Top

The jeans

Kate is a fan of Paige Denim, and although I’m not 100% sure that these are from that brand, Paige denim certainly has a great current range of skinny jeans at Selfridges. I really like the Skyline dark denim pair.

PAIGE DENIM Skyline skinny mid-rise jeans £165 click to visit Selfridges



Reviewed – Yellow Print Jersey Dress from Wallis

I’ve been talking on the blog about transitional pieces recently, as we move from our glorious summer into the slightly chillier days of Autumn. It is still warm at the moment, but there have been duller and chillier days, a little less in the way of blue skies, a little more in the way of drizzle. And the nights are starting to draw in – you definitely need a cardigan or jacket when heading for a night out.

As part of Fashion-Mommy’s third birthday, those lovely people at Wallis sent me some fantastic, transitional pieces to review. You can find the first review here, the second piece I got to review is a fabulous dress that is just perfect for either day or night wear this Autumn. That piece is the Yellow Printed Long Sleeved Jersey Dress.

Yellow Printed Long Sleeve Jersey Dress £40 click to visit Wallis

The first thing I need to say about this dress is that I absolutely love it. Yellow is always one of my favourite colours, but this is more of a mustard shade than a zesty yellow, which I think fits the pattern very well. The print is unusual, a sort of retro paisley style, but with a slightly graphic overlay – it is hard to pull your eyes away from this eye-catching design.

There are other features I really like about this dress. It is a great stretch jersey fabric, but with a bit of a sheen to it that makes it a viable option for evening occasions. The 3/4 sleeves are perfect for those who dislike their upper arms, and also make it warmer, perfect for those days when there is a bit of wind or a chill in the air. I also adore the elongated rectangular neckline, which is ultra flattering.

This dress needs hardly any accessories to do it justice, the print is most definitely the star of the show. I add nude heels (also Wallis) and a nude clutch bag to complete my look, which I wore to a special birthday Celebration for Brown’s Restaurant last week.

With my Sister Jodie and Blogger and Stylist Emily Jayne at Brown's Birthday

Wallis really does have some perfect dresses to take you stylishly into Autumn. Here are my top five styles.

Floral Midi Dress Price: £32.00 click to visit Wallis

Blue Bird Print Dress Price: £38.00 click to visit Wallis

Black and Taupe Polka Dot Dress Price: £40.00 click to visit Wallis

Blue Zip Waist Dress Price: £35.00 click to visit Wallis

Blue Printed Long Sleeve Tunic Dress Price: £40.00 click to visit Wallis

Wallis have a special online event this weekend, with 20% off selected lines. Click here to view the event.

Saving money for the future

I can still remember the days when saving for the future really didn’t matter to me. After all, I was young and the future seemed so far away, living for now was definitely my mantra for life. But times change, and now I’m touching 40, with a child and a mortgage, and the future has actually caught up. So now putting something aside for that rainy day doesn’t seem half as boring and staid as it once did.

Set Up an Isa

One sensible way of putting a little something aside for the future is to set up an ISA.  An ISA is an Individual Savings Account  which offers you a way of saving money without having to pay any interest on any interest earned. Cash ISA’s are becoming very popular because of their tax free nature.  This can be useful if , like me, you are thinking of saving something for your child’s further education. It can also be a great option if you are looking to save a little nest egg to fall back on in future years. There is a lot of advice out there to help you find the best ISA for you,  (Lloyds TSB cash ISA are a really good option at the moment) and the real beauty of this scheme is that your money is safe, you can just forget about it until you really need it.Accounts can be managed online, making them conveniently easy to control.

In addition, you could also set up a junior ISA. This allows you to save a tax free amount for your child, which can then transfer to your child at 16. Withdrawals are not usually allowed until your child reaches 18, making this the perfect way to save the funds needed for university fees, help towards a deposit for a house, or a first car.

Everyday Saving

As well as starting an effective savings programme, you can also make your money stretch a little further in everyday circumstances. My mom always had a saying that ‘if you look after the pennies, the pounds look after themselves’, and this proves to be very true.

Here are a few of the things I do to save money.

1. Use voucher code sites. I always check a voucher code site before I make an online purchase. Free delivery, money off codes and information about sales are all useful ways to make your purchase cheaper. I also check for discounts when eating out – many restaurants offer deals when eating midweek, or during daytime hours.

2. Sign up for points cards and loyalty schemes. You can collect the points to save towards things you want, or for Christmas and birthday presents.

3. Sign up for newsletters for your favourite stores, this will help you gain information about upcoming sales and discounts.

4. Try budget supermarkets. I love Aldi, which is fabulous for the sorts of Mediterranean food my family love to eat.

5. Use online comparison sites like Kelkoo to compare prices. This is particularly useful at Christmas when shopping for toys and electrical goods.

Let me know if you have any other ideas, hints and tips.