Fashion and Shoes

Fashion and Shoes

I always have problems finding shoes that are comfortable for my feet. I have quite wide feet and many fashionable shoes are a tight fit. I tend to do a lot of walking so I like shoes that look trendy but are comfortable to walk in. There is nothing worse than having shoes that rub and cause blisters. The last few weeks I have been trying out Hotter shoes and I have been really happy.

Hotter shoesThe pair of Hotter Shoes I have been trying  were a pair of ballerina pumps called Jewel Shoes. They are perfect for work and walking around town and do look smart. What I like about Hotter Shoes is their shoes are designed with the comfort concept. The shoes have lovely soft cushioning to cradle your feet. The exterior is made with soft leather to keep your feet fresh and the lightweight sole is filled with air bubbles.  Even better they have a generous fit which is perfect for my wide feet. When I wear them I feel like I am walking on air and have a spring in my step.

Jewel Shoes from Hotter ShoesThis particular design of shoes goes with whatever I am wearing, looking equally good with old tatty jeans, smart work trousers or a summer dress. They are ideal now the weather is a little warmer and I am no longer wearing boots. What I did not anticipate was that I would be rescuing hedgehogs with Hotter Shoes.

Hotter ShoesLast night my son came home with the dog and announced he had just seen a hedgehog on the street.  I pulled on my Hotter Shoes and got him to show me where it was. It was literally just a few feet outside my house on the pavement. The hedgehog was happily eating  something that had been dropped on the ground. I was a little worried as it was really near the road. While our road is not very busy, it was the time when people were coming home for tea. We are also very near a main road and I was worried that the hedgehog would get squashed.

HedgehogFortunately I still had the shoe box from my Hotter Shoes. I went in and got it and gently scoped the hedgehog up, putting him inside. We then walked up to our local country park, being careful not to drop the box. The hedgehog moved around inside the box and at one point tried to peek over the edge. When we got to the park I released the hedgehog in the tree line, away from people. He quite happily  climbed out of the shoe box and started wandering around.

hedgehogWe watched him for a while to make sure he was safe and happily moving around. He seemed happy snuffling around in the bushes looking for food and somewhere to go.

HedgehogHedgehogWe left him there but went back a little later to make sure he was still fine. He had moved off from where we had put him and was deep in the woods, happily eating a worm. We only found him because my son heard him rustling about in the undergrowth. Happy that he was safe we left him to get on with things.

Now I can’t guarantee that if you wear Hotter Shoes you will see a hedgehog, but you can be sure that you will have comfortable feet and be able to walk for miles.

I was sent the shoes in return for an honest review, the opinions and photos are my own. I was really happy to see a hedgehog and it was quite a surprise to find one near my house.



Next week is the start of the Cheltenham Festival where you can enjoy the horses jump racing. Ladies Day brings a chance to dress up in your finery and mingle with the crowds, watching the horses thundering round the track. With seven races and the Queen Mother Champion Chase it will be a fabulous day. I would love to go to the races, although Cheltenham is a little far for me to travel to. It always puts me in mind of the film My Fair Lady where Eliza makes her debut. She is dressed in all her finery, her accent is now fitting of the upper classes but her phrasing gives her away. They are all sitting drinking tea, making small talk whilst the races go on in the background and Eliza is telling the story of her Aunt dying. I love the part where she says “Now, what would you call a woman with that strength in her have to die of influenza, and what become of her new straw hat that should have come to me? Somebody pinched it, and what I say is, them that pinched it, done her in.”. The scene really gives an idea of racing and the different classes at the time.

If I was going to Cheltenham this is the outfit I would choose. The dress is black with splashes of green to welcome in the Spring. The cardigan is silver to add a touch of colour.

AlisonI would do my nails and toes in a green colour which matched the roses in the dress. The finishing touches would be in the accessories. They are not clear in the pictures so I have found some similar accessories and put them in this picture to give you an idea.

Accesories for the races


The shoes may be black but they are actually encrusted with crystals, similar to these ones. The crystals cover the entire shoes including the heels and look stunning. I matched these with a black studded bag for a touch of rock and a simple black fascinator. The final touch was a pair of earring to match the dress.

Have you ever been to the races? What did you wear?


When I woke up this morning the ground was white with frost. It took me ages to scrape the ice from the window of the car and when I walked the dog I was slipping on the ice. In weather like this you need to wrap up warmly. All to often I come in with cold fingers and a cold nose when I have been out with the dog. My son also takes the dogs on long walks and needs to dress warmly for the winter. He is now fourteen and of an age where he likes to take pride in his clothes. He has discovered designer labels and loves nothing more than deciding which clothes suit him.

When I saw that Surfdome were running a Cosy Kids competition I got him involved. The idea was to find five items of clothing on the site that would keep your kids cosy and stylish this winter. I let him have a good browse on the site and decide on an outfit that he would wear. These are his choices:

Cosy Winter Wear


I think that his outfit is perfect for a cold winters day. Those boots would be ideal for walking around the country park with the dog when it is cold and icy. They would ensure that he does not slip as well as keeping his feet dry. The jumper and hat work really well with the beige trousers and are lovely colours. The North Face jacket is really cosy, quilted and containing thermoball insulation which keeps you warm even in the wet. This is the ideal jacket for going out in howling gales and snowstorms, if you were so inclined. As well as being warm and cosy I think it looks stylish. What do you think of his choices?

This is my entry into the Surfdome cosy kids competition.


 This year we have been fortunate with the weather, I was able to keep wearing my fit flops for a lot longer than I normally do. It has only recently turned really cold, the last two mornings being frosty. Weather like this calls for decent boots. Boots that will keep your feet warm and look stylish but be able to take you from walks with the dog, to work, shopping in town and even out in the evening. I am quite fussy when it comes to my boots, they have to last and be practical for walking about in as well as looking good. I noticed that Office have started selling Timberland boots. On looking though their selection I found a pair that looked perfect for me, the Timberland Nellie pull on boot in black.  It is waterproof and has a sturdy sole but I also think it looks fashionable with the fleecy cuff around the top. I could quite happily wear these most of the time and for lots of occasions.

Festive style with Timberland


When I was challenged to create a festive look to go along with the Timberland boots I liked I got busy putting together some items that I liked. I went for a look that I could happily wear to the office and on to our Christmas office lunch. It needed to be something that was warm as I would be getting the bus home afterwards in the cold, but still look smart. I chose a pair of black skinny jeans which I dressed up with the Remarkable Knitted jumper from Joe Browns (that is really it’s name). I really liked the green colours and the pattern on the jumper. To dress it up a bit I added a silver bracelet from Debenhams and some silver and jade earrings from Accessorize. I felt the colours in the earrings went well with the jumper. I finished off the look with a Style London satchel bag from Office and the Wow Wow coat from Joe Browns which I think is unusual.

I was really pleased with this look and think it works really well with the Timberland boots. I would love to know what you think.

This is my entry into the Office Timberland competition.


My husband always dresses smartly, I have days where I look scruffy, usually when I am cleaning the house. My husband is always well turned out. A well ironed shirt completes an outfit and can work well with jeans, casual trousers or a suit. House of Fraser is a great place to find shirts of all styles, from well known brands to smart and casual shirts. My husband was looking for a smart shirt to take him from the warmer summer days into the cooler days of Autumn. He chose this New & Lingwood shirt in a blue gingham pattern.

House of fraser shirtIt is a formal shirt but looks well teamed with a pair of chinos. The blue gingham pattern is stylish but not overbearing. The cuffs fasten with a press stud button which makes them look a little unusual. I think it looks really smart and would look great on an evening out. It would also work well for work.

House-of-frazerThe shirt looks good both when sitting and standing. The dog came to investigate what we were doing in the garden and was quite taken with the shirt as well. He had to pose with my husband to get his photo taken. I think he thought it was all a great game.


house-of-fraser-4Eventually the dog got tired and went in allowing my husband to show off the outfit better. I think he has made a great choice and will get a lot of wear out of this shirt in the Autumn months. The shirt is 100% cotton so it will be easy to wash for me as well. It can be washed at 40C so I don’t need to do anything special, apart from make sure nothing red goes in the same wash.

house-of-fraser-3What do you think of my husband’s choice of outfit? I think it looks really smart.

Written in collaboration with House of Fraser.