Fashion and Shoes

Fashion and Shoes

*Some items in this post have been sent for review

What is the secret to choosing great summer clothes for men? Dressing for each season brings it’s own challenges.  In the autumn and winter thicker fabrics, dark colours and subtle patterns suit the colder weather. The summer bring hot weather and humidity. Light fabrics and bright colours will help you embrace long lazy sunny days.

Summer clothes for me

Choosing Great Summer Clothes for Men

Looking good during the heat of the summer requires a little planning. Looking good whilst staying smart can be a difficult task. Men who look stylish in the winter can take on an anything goes attitude in the summer. Think clashing prints, socks with sandals, three quarter length trousers and hankies with knots on the head. With a little forethought you can avoid the wild on holiday look and dress to look stylish despite the heat.

Tips for Summer Dressing

When dressing for the summer think about colour co-ordination, good fit and minimal style for a smart but casual look. You should have certain key pieces in your wardrobe and use them with accessories to create a different look.


A decent pair of shorts can transform your summer wardrobe. When choosing shorts ensure they are not too short. Just above the knee is a good length to aim for. Choose shorts that are not too baggy without huge pockets to add bulk. They should add shape to your figure without being too tight. Ensure you have a couple of pairs to choose from, tailored shorts for a smart casual look or more colourful shorts for the beach.

Summer clothes for men shorts

Summer clohes for men shorts


In the hot summer weather it is more than likely you are sweating more than normal. To help allow your skin to breath and prevent overheating choose shirts made of natural fabrics. Cotton and linen are natural fabrics that allow the skin to breath whilst absorbing moisture. Silk is also a good choice. Don’t be afraid to add a pop of colour to brighten up the outfit. Keep shirts loose to encourage air flow and keep you cool.


Choose loose fit trousers in lightweight fabrics to help keep you cool this summer. Chinos are great for dressing up with a summer shirt. They look good for both formal and casual occasions. Choosing lighter colours will also help to reflect the sunlight and keep you cool.

Summer clothes for me



Summer is time to bring out the loafers, sandals and canvas shoes. Invest in some no show socks to avoid blisters and to prevent the long socks with shoes or sandals look which does not look good. Leather loafers look great with tailored outfits whilst canvas works well with shorts. Bare feet are great for relaxing in the garden and letting your feet breath.


Experiment with colour. Don’t be afraid to try bright colours and bold prints. Just make sure you match them with a neutral colour so that you don’t clash. Be careful with yellow though. I have found that yellow attracts wildlife. At a beach both my husband and son had yellow t-shirts and the midges would not leave them alone. A yellow t-shirt was also a great attraction to a donkey!

Do you have any tips for choosing great summer clothes for men? Let me know below.

You may also be like to read my tips about getting men ready for a wedding.






This is the time of year when many children are leaving secondary school.  Some will go on to further education, some will start work. It is a time of change which is both sad and exciting at the same time.

Last week my son left school. It seems like only yesterday it was his first day at school. He stood in the hall in his uniform ready to go, both excited and scared. It is hard to believe that he has come to the end of his time at his Secondary school.

The school gave the leavers a great send-off. They went out for lunch at a Chinese restaurant and afterwards they had the leaving assembly. We went along to this to see him get his Record of Achievement. The head teacher said a few words about each student before they sent up to receive their files.  It was both a proud and sad moment. Next year he is going to college and is looking forward to that challenge.

A gift for school leavers from GiftsOnline4U

My sons time at secondary school has been a mix of both proud moments and difficult things to deal with. This is probably the same for the parents of any teenager. Most recently he made us really proud when he won a gold medal in the East of Scotland disability games for judo. As a result of this he is taking part in the Sheffield Special Olympics in the summer.

GiftsOnline4U have a range of over  4,500 personalised gifts for all occasions. They are an online gift shop who create and manufacture 99% of their personalised gifts in-house in Lincolnshire.  They also have an exlusive collection of personalised alcohol gifts with pewter labels which provide a luxurious finish.

If you are looking for a gift for school leavers you will get plenty of ideas on their site. To mark the fact he is moving towards adult life we chose to get my son an engraved watch. This will be useful for him for years to come. We could also get a message engraved on the back of the watch for him.

Personalised watch from GiftsOnline4U

Choosing a personalised watch

GiftsOnline4U have a great range of watches to choose from. As well as wrist watches in a range of different styles they also do old fashioned pocket watches. These beautifully engraved pieces would make a great retirement gift. For my son we chose a wrist watch with a sporty design. It has a contemporary modern style which is perfect for a teenage boy.

Personalised watch from GiftsOnline4U

Ordering the watch was easy. You choose which colour you want, black or white. There is then the option to get a message on the back. You can have five lines of 18 characters and can choose between five styles of font. When you order you can also choose a gift bag and a card to really personalise the gift.

The watch came quickly and we were able to present it to my son after his school leaving assembly. He was really happy to receive it. The engraving on the back was a special touch which he loved.  It was a lovely way to mark a special moment in his life and to remove some of the sadness that leaving school brings. The watch is really well made and should last him for years to come.

Engraving on the back of the personalised watch

Now we just need to wait and see what the coming years bring. First we have a long summer to enjoy.

Are your children leaving school this year? Did your school do anything special to mark the event? Let me know below.

I was sent the watch in return for an honest review. I did not have to say anything nice and my opinions are my own.



If you are looking for unique make-up the Urban Decay Jean Michel Basquiat Collection is worth a look. The partnership between Urban Decay and American painter Jean Michel Basquiat has produced something unique.

Recently I went along to the launch of the Urban Decay Jean Michel Basquiat Collection in Debenhams, Newcastle. If you know me you will know I do not wear make up often. A little eye liner and mascara are usually enough for me. I was looking forward to finding out more about the collaboration between Urban Decay and Jean Michel Basquiat. Urban Decay always have bold and unusual colours in their collections. This is something that appeals to me as I love to experiment with colour.

Urban Decay and Jean Michel Basquiat

Urban Decay have been around since the 1990’s. At that time make up was dominated by reds, pinks and beige and it was hard to find colours like blues, greens and purples. Urban Decay brought a breath of fresh air to the make up landscape with a range of shades inspired by the seedier side of the urban landscape. Their motto, Beauty with an Edge.

The collaboration with Jean Michel Basquiet is apt. He is an American artist who became known as part of SAMO©. An informal graffiti duo who would leave enigmatic art around Lower East Side Manhattan in the late 1970’s. At that time the area was a cultural hotbed. Hip hop, post punk and street art movements were all existing together. Since then Jean Michel Basquiet has been exhibiting his neo-expressionist art internationally.

Urban Decay Jean Michel Basquiat Collection

The limited Edition Urban Decay Jean Michel Basquiat Collection consists of 3 lipsticks, 3 eyeliners, two shadow palettes and a blush palette. These all come with Jean Michel Basquiet’s signiture art as part of the design. The palettes come in a canvas casing and can be used as hangable wall art when you have used them.

Urban Decay Jean Michel Basquiet collection

Look 1: Using the Gold Griot eyeshadow palette (£35)

The Gold Girot eyeshadow palette features eight neutral shades in browns and golds. If you are a fan of the smoky eye look this palette is perfect for that. To recreate this look use the dark brown over the lid with some lighter brown in the crease. To highlight the brow bone use the white shade. If you want to add some sparkle in the corner of the eye then use one of the Heavy Metals glitter eye liners. Complete the look with mascara.
Urban Decay Gold Girot Pallete being used

Urban decay look with gold girot palette

Urban Decay Gold Girot Pallette

Look 2: Using the Tenant eyeshadow palette (£35)

If you prefer a more colourful look then the Tenant eyeshadow palette is perfect. It has a range of bring and bold colours. You can create a statement look or add a little splash of colour to a more neutral look. I love this range of colours, the greens and blues in particular are striking.

To create this colourful blue and green look use the light green on the lid. Add some of the darker blue and green in the crease and don’t be afraid to take the colour up and out. Finish with some mascara.

Urban Decay Tenant eyeshadow palette

Urban Decay Tenant Eyeshaow pallete

Urban Decay tenant eyeshadow pallette

Look 3: Using the Gallery Blush Palette

The Gallery Blush Palette holds two shades of blush, a bronzer and a highlighter. The colours will work with any skin tone and can help you create a contoured look. To recreate this look use the darker brown Jawbone shade to contour the cheeks and temples. This shade also works well as an eyeshadow. Use it in the crease of the eye to add definition. Use the lighter “Now’s the Time” shade to highlight the cheeks, the centre of the nose and the cupids bow on the lips. Finally use the pink “X-rated” to add a touch of colour to the cheeks. This is a nice neutral look that can be worn anywhere.

Urban Decay Gallery Blush Palette
Urban Decay Gallery Blush Pallette
Urban Decay Gallery Blush Palette
I am loving this new range from Urban Decay and am certainly tempted to splash out on some of the products. The Tenant eyeshadow palette is my favourite. Which of these looks do you like best? Let me know below.
Urban Decay Jean Michel Basquiat collection

A bracelet from ChloBo is a quick way to add a personal style to an outfit. Worn together or singly they can add a statement and make your look unique.

I am a big fan of bracelets. They are a great way to add a quirky touch to your outfit without much effort. You can easily change the mood of your outfit with a bracelet. A chunky bracelet is ideal for the office. You do not want stacks of bracelets rubbing together and providing a distraction. Picking a simple chunky bracelet can add a statement of power to your outfit.  For a more whimsical and romantic look add a stack of bracelets to your arm. Beaded bracelets add a boho look whilst a stack of thin metal bracelets will make people think of the gypsy lifestyle. A simple and ornate bracelet can add a touch of elegance to an outfit.

The secret lies in choosing the correct bracelet to add charm and style.  Before you buy a bracelet make sure it is something that you will wear a lot. Think about the outfits that you have and if it will match. Consider the type of sleeves you have on the outfit. If the sleeve is too long the bracelet will not be seen. A bracelet that will work with different outfits will be a great addition to your wardrobe.


A new bracelet from ChloBo

ChloBo is a jewellery brand that allows women to add their own statement touch to an outfit with their jewellery. The range is built around the spirit of adventure and freedom of travel. The jewellery is a mixture of silver, rose gold, gold and semi precious stones which are crafted into unique pieces. These bracelets and charms allow women to express their personalities whilst also carrying significance and meaning.

bracelet from ChloBo

Recently I was sent a new bracelet from ChloBo. There is a great selection to choose from on their site, which can be combined together to make unique and different bracelet stacks. They also look great worn on their own. Any of these bracelets will allow you to add a unique and quirky twist to an outfit.

The packaging is stunning. A pink bag with the ChloBo label emblazoned on it holds the box with the bracelet. The box also has the signature pink colour with a silver tag with the ChloBo name to allow you to open the box. Inside the bracelet nestles on a pink cushion inviting you to put it on.

ChloBo grey agate star bracelet

ChloBo Grey Agate Star Bracelet

I chose the ChloBo grey agate star bracelet. The bracelet is made from grey agate beads, a stone which is known to balance energy and bring good fortune. Between the grey agate beads there are rose gold loops which act to accentuate the stone and bring the colour to life. The rose gold star is an eye catching feature of the bracelet. The tar is a wish symbol and is meant to help bring wishes to life. Hopefully wearing this bracelet will help me help me achieve my wishes. Every ChloBo bracelet also has its own ChloBo designer tag which is discretely attached to one of the rose gold beads.

ChloBo grey agate star bracelet

ChloBo grey agate star bracelet

I think the bracelet looks simple and elegant, perfect for wearing everyday with many outfits. The simple grey beads are a great neutral colour and the rose gold provides a splash of detail to draw the eye. The star is the finishing touch which adds an eye catching feature to the bracelet. On it’s own it will add a finishing touch to any outfit.

Styling my ChloBo bracelet

The neutral grey beads allow the ChloBo grey agate star bracelet to be styled in many different ways. It would look great paired with a simple wooden bangle. Wood and stone are found in nature and would look great together. It would also work paired with a simple gold bangle which would bring out the gold of the star. I chose to style mine with a beaded blue stack of bangles which would be the perfect look with a sparkly top at a Christmas party.

ChloBo grey agate star braclet styled with a stacked blue beaded bangle

What do you think of my styling? How would you style a bracelet from ChloBo and which one would you choose? Let me know below.

You may also be interested in jewellery from Glamulet who make stunning and unusual necklaces.

I was sent a bracelet in order to style it for the purposes of this post. I did not have to be nice and my opinions are my own.











Be ready for the winter and bring on the cold with Millets. A nice snug jacket is a great way to defeat the cold and get outside more this winter.

Over the last few days winter has really been making itself known. The remnants of a storm blew past making the weather wet and miserable. It felt like the rain would never stop and the sky would be grey forever. It was the sort of weather where you do not want to venture outside. The option to stay inside with a cup of tea is the wise choice in these circumstances. Going outside will leave you soaking and miserable.

I didn’t have the option to stay inside though, my dog wants his walk whatever the weather. He gets so excited when he knows it is nearly walk time. Dashing about by the door and barking he announces its time to go out. Fortunately I am now ready for the colder weather. Millets are working alongside brands like The North Face and Berghaus on their Bring on the Cold Campaign.  The aim is to get people ready for the colder weather so they can get outside and enjoy the fresh air.  They sent me a lovely jacket from their womens jackets range which has been keeping me warm and dry.

Bring on the cold with Millets

North Face women's stratos jacket from Millets

I chose a Women’s Stratos jacket from The North Face. This is perfect for long walks in our country park in the wind and the rain. The outside shell of the jackets is waterproof as well as being breathable. If I get hot sweat can escape from the jacket without me getting wet. There are also zips under the arms so you can let air in. The seams are taped which offer extra protection from the wet. The hood and hem are adjustable which is perfect for me as hoods are always miles too big. Without being able to adjust the hood I would not be able to see where I was going.

Womens stratos jacket from the north face

Eddie, my dog is really excited that I am happy to get outside in the cold now and take him for a walk whatever the weather. All I need now is a waterproof coat for him. When he is wet and muddy he loves to come in and roll around on the carpet. I have to be quick to catch him with a towel before he can.

North Face Womens Stratos Jacket from Millets

Long walks with the dog

Even in the winter is is nice to get outside and clear the cobwebs from your brain. Fresh air and exercise can make you feel brighter even if the weather is bad. I like to take the dog for long walks in the country park. Sadly the field at the entrance to the park is being built on. Houses are starting to go up and my secret apple trees are no longer there. They were bulldozed away and the land levelled. We always got a big stash of apples from these in the Autumn.

The field is now rather muddy and bleak. It is a shame as I have seen lots of wildlife there in the past. This summer we had lapwings and I have seen a heron and a pheasant. Now the days are shorter it is often dark. Even when it is dark and dreary an unexpected sunrise can lift your spirits. It briefly turns the muddy field into something beautiful.


Puddle with sunrise

We do catch some sunlight as well and my dog has not been sure what to make of the Autumn leaves lying on the ground. His face as he puzzles about the leaves provides a comedy moment. Soon he was swishing though the leaves happy to be on his way. Thanks to my new coat I am enjoying getting outside with him even in this colder weather. I can also get out and enjoy days out on wet days and visit places like Wallington Hall and Cragside.

Dog in Autumn leaves

Are you ready for the cold weather this year? Where do you like to go exploring? Let me know below.

I was sent the coat for the purposes of this post. My opinions are honest and my own.