Kimono Style Jackets from Gudrun Sjoden

In the way that the maxi skirt made a comeback and then never disappeared, the Kimono has had a real moment over the last few years. A traditional Japanese style jacket, the kimono was something that at one time you could only find on a trip overseas, or in a vintage shop. These days it is a key part of the wardrobe, giving an alternative to a jacket or cardigan, and proving to be a versatile piece of clothing that can be worn with jeans, over a little black dress, or even as a beach cover-up. Vive le Kimono!

Gudrun Sjoden added kimono jackets to their Spring collection this year, in both linen mix and jersey fabrics, and I was lucky enough to be sent the Hinode jacket, which is part of the Spring Japan collection. I was sent the blue option and it has been getting lots of wear in my Spring wardrobe, being pretty, comfortable and very easy to wear.

Hinode Jacket click to visit Gudrun Sjoden

Hinode Jacket click to visit Gudrun Sjoden

Gudrun styled this jacket many different ways, with clashing prints and a range of dresses and trousers, but, for me, this is the classic piece for casual styling, a piece that is perfect for every day dressing. It is the sort of piece that just needs you to add jeans, a vest top and it is all ready to go. A true wardrobe life saver.

The jacket is a loose fittting, traditional Kimono style rather than a fitted version that you can also find on the high street. The sleeves are slightly longer than 3.4 length and are loose fitting. The fabric is a stretch cotton and it is generous in its fit – you could probably size down if you prefer your clothes to be more tailored.

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The new Summer collection from Gudrun Sjoden is now launched online and is well worth a look.DSCN6668[1]

Wearing on a rather windy day in Wales.

Wearing on a rather windy day in Wales.

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New handbag lust list

Of all the fashion items you can buy, it is handbags that I have the biggest weakness for. I must have at least 200 now, and I can’t seem to part with any of them. I have some great designer buys from the likes of Vivienne Westwood, Michael Kors, Tods, Lulu Guinness, Mulberry and Marc Jacobs, along with lots of beautiful vintage clutches picked up in charity shops and flea markets, and plenty of High Street buys as well. The collection is stored under the bed, bursting out of cupboards, and is a constant source of moaning from the husband, but I still couldn’t bear to part with any of it.

A few of my faves

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A Biba clutch from House of Fraser

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A Desigual bag picked up in Menorca

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A fabulous Zatchel

Longchamp Le Pliage bag

Longchamp Le Pliage bag

Despite having more bags than I know what to do with, each season I look excitedly at the new collections and put together a lust list of all the handbags, clutches, totes and shoppers that I would love to add to my collection. This season is no exception. There are just so many great designs around, both from the High Street, and stunning designer pieces that I am just loving.

 Saint Laurent Lulu Bunny Small glitter shoulder bag £ 790 £ 474 | 40% off click to visit MyTheresa


Saint Laurent
Lulu Bunny Small glitter shoulder bag £474
click to visit MyTheresa.com

 Biba Perspex jelly beach bag £41.30  click to visit House of Fraser


Biba Perspex jelly beach bag
£41.30 click to visit House of Fraser

Black ring handle tote bag     Price: £25.00     Colour: Black click to visit Dorothy Perkins

Black ring handle tote bag
Price: £25.00
Colour: Black click to visit Dorothy Perkins

Kingfisher blue landscape tote bag     Price: £22.00     Colour: Blue click to visit House of Fraser

Kingfisher blue landscape tote bag
Price: £22.00
Colour: Blue click to visit House of Fraser

Blue Trim Detail Bag     Price: £25.00 click to visit Dorothy Perkins

Blue Trim Detail Bag
Price: £25.00
click to visit Dorothy Perkins

Pastel Yellow Micro Clutch £45 click to visit Zatchels

Pastel Yellow Micro Clutch £45 click to visit Zatchels

 Michael Kors Jet Set Travel tan medium tote bag click to visit House of Fraser


Michael Kors Jet Set Travel tan medium tote bag
click to visit House of Fraser

Green Leather Tote Bag £63 click to visit Zatchels

Green Leather Tote Bag £63 click to visit Zatchels

Leather Smart Backpack     Price: £55.00 click to visit Topshop

Leather Smart Backpack
Price: £55.00
click to visit Topshop

Pom-Pom Straw Tote     Price: £25.00 click to visit Topshop

Pom-Pom Straw Tote
Price: £25.00 click to visit Topshop

So there are my current faves, with first prize going to the final Topshop bag. I can honestly imagine someone running through Alicante Airport in the 1970s with that bag, clutching it along with some castanets and a straw donkey. It is so retro I couldn’t fail to love it. I also have my heart set on the Biba animal print beach bag, I love the idea of this with my Michael Kors shades I reviewed last year.

What about you, have you seen a bag that has caught your eye this season? Leave me a comment and let me know – I could talk handbags all day.

 

 

My hand luggage essentials

As we move into May, the realisation comes that it is getting very close to holiday time, and I start to think, once again, of what it is I’m going to be packing, both in the suitcase, and in my hand luggage. We are traveling with Jet 2, which means a decent amount of hand luggage (10 kilos), but the fact is that you are going to be carrying this bag around the airport so you don’t want to overload and do yourself a shoulder injury before you actually get there. Affordable family holiday site Icelolly.com have recently put together a blog with their hand luggage must haves, and although I agree with most of the list, I think they have missed some key things out.

Here are a few extra things I also keep in my bag.

1. A warm pashmina or scarf.

It has to be said, I always find it cold on aeroplanes, especially when I am flying back from a hot country. A warm scarf of pashmina almost doubles are a blanket, and is perfect for throwing over my shoulders when I start to feel a chill.

You can also use your scarf once you get to the resort as an evening cover-up.

You can also use your scarf once you get to the resort as an evening cover-up.

2. Toner or hydrating spray

The cabin pressure makes me skin really dry, and it often looks awful when I land, so I try to keep it hydrated. Toner is a great way to hydrate, and, as long as you keep the bottle below 100ml, you should be able to carry it on. Or you could use a hydrating spray/mist which is also very refreshing.

Love this hydration mist from L'Occitaine - an absolute fave and perfect when traveling. Click here to view.

Love this hydration mist from L’Occitaine – an absolute fave and perfect when traveling. Click here to view.

3. A good book.

I never start a new book on a flight, it is much better to lose yourself in one you are already enjoying. Crossword books and Sudoku also help to pass the time away a little quicker.

4. Something for Joe.

This is not strictly for me, but Joe is like any six year old and can get a little bored on flights. He has a playtray kit which you can read about here, this is just a perfect way to take a few toys, colouring books, reading books etc to make the journey pass without stress and hassle. I also find letting him choose a new magazine at the airport also helps.

Keeping Joe amused is always a good thing.

Keeping Joe amused is always a good thing.

Those are just a few of my airport essentials – what do you always travel with?