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Fashion: Simple Shopping Tips For Engagement Rings

2015 July 2
by What Emma Did

Today’s post is one aimed for the men, as recently a lot of my male friends are thinking about’ popping the question’, and I’ve heard a real mix of concerns and worries, along with a few panic stricken moments regarding the shopping aspect. If your partner is pining away for a ‘simple’ engagement ring –what does  a ‘simple’ engagement ring even mean? There is no easy accounting for taste, so if the love of your life wants you to keep it simple; I’ve put together some tips for the men out there to help try and get this all important moment just right. After all, it’s one of the most important purchases they will possible make in their lives, and men are useless at shopping, right?

For most men, the purchase of a wedding engagement ring is going to be their maiden voyage into the labyrinth of women’s baubles and they’re afraid. Very afraid. Walking into a jewellery shop as a man is like walking into a 5-year-old’s birthday party dressed up like a piñata; you’ll be spotted immediately, descended upon, and played from the get-go. Your lady is worth whatever you feel, not what you buy her, so don’t be guilted into spending money that you don’t have. No lady wants to know their man is going to be forever in debt due to the huge rock she’s wearing everyday…

So here’s how not to get had, and how to find a simple and elegant wedding engagement ring to make her happy:

1. Budget

First, let’s consider your budget. If you’re looking for a simple engagement ring, it might be because you’re low on money and you’re trying to stretch it. Let me just say this one thing about your budget; it’s good enough.Whatever it is, it’s good enough. You will be able to find something beautiful with what you have.

There’s a whole lot of pressure on a man to get something eye-catching that his lady can show off to her friends, and her father can judge you by. But it isn’t all about dolling out the maximum bling.

There are many attributes of unique engagement rings online that make them bespoke and wonderful for the wearer (and prevent it from getting nicked on garments). And of course, all while reducing the required budget to purchase one. Most ladies want to start their new life debt-free or make memories during the most epic of honeymoons, so you can relax the pressure on your pocket book, if only a little. The below photo is taken from a wedding jewellery event I attended, when I awkwardly felt a million dollars trying on this particular rock…

yellow diamond

2. Materials

Lets talk metals: Gold is nice, silver is a little too flexible and temporary –yet platinum or titanium are much more affordable, and a heck of a lot more durable than other engagement ring band options. These ultra-durable engagement ring bands can also be quite functional for a lady that works with her hands and runs the risk of nicking her jewellery on other hard surfaces.

3. Stones

Diamonds are not necessarily a go-to for engagement rings arrangements. You have a whole planet of stones to choose from, from birth stones to one-of-a-kind gem stones –old and new. Does your lady’s personal style jive with a diamond? Most don’t. Not everyone walks around town looking like Elizabeth Taylor in her younger years.

Take a gander in her jewellery box and look at her wardrobe? If everything isn’t Chanel, I think it’s safe to explore different stones and colour combinations, and maybe even limiting the arrangement on her ring to a single stone instead of a symphony of gaudy.

engagement rings

4. Size

Go back to that jewellery box and make note of her ring size. Being a little James Bond in this area will help increase the element of surprise and it’s too easy to do; snap up a ring and bring it to the jeweller for reference. If you’re worried about your lady thinking she’s been robbed, try tracing the ring on paper and leave your specimen behind.

It really is a good idea to seek a little advice from any female friends, and most importantly, don’t get swept up into the whole designer bespoke jeweller game, being forced by a sales lady who has spotted your vulnerable clueless side regarding rings. Take note of the above, and lets just hope she says yes!

Engagement Ring Shopping For Simple Gals


Beauty: Estee Lauder Double Wear Review

2015 July 1
by What Emma Did

Estee Lauder – a brand that needs no introduction. I’m recently testing out a few foundations for when I need a more long-lasting, full coverage look, as I have been trying to continue using a CC cream for everyday wear. When I suffered outbreaks through my teens and early twenties and I would be self conscious about it, I started to use the Double Wear foundation as it gave me the best coverage, and lasted all day. Like seriously – all day all night. From waking up in the morning to removing it before bed, my foundation literally did not budge…

I don’t suffer the outbreaks as bad anymore, but I do need a good coverage foundation if I’m heading out in the evening. And as it has been many years since I have used this collection, I wanted to try a couple of the Double Wear products to see if I am still feeling positive about this range.

estee lauder double wear
estee lauder double wear
I have been trying out the Double Wear Stay-in Place foundation, Double Wear Light, Double Wear Brush on Glow Highlighter and the Double Wear Stay-in Place High Coverage Concealer. Here is a little round-up in case you have always wondered what the general thoughts are on these products:

Double Wear Stay-in Place High Coverage Concealer: I use this with my fingers, but you can use this with a brush for a more concentrated application and build up. I have been using this as the first stage of my make-up application, blending under the eyes, over any blemishes and the sides of my nose. It has a really nice full coverage effect – I find it sets the base for a high coverage look as you barely need to go over with foundation near the under eyes once this is applied. It blends is easily and doesn’t sit heavily on top of the skin. An ideal first base if you have sun spots, broken capillaries or any pesky spots that need tackling first. It’s a wonder for my under-eye bags too! (£21.50)

double wear

Double Wear Stay-in Place foundation: The holy grail of foundations. Just a little ‘blob’ of this on the back of my hand and blended into my skin produces a flawless, airbrushed look. Flaws literally vanish, and they stay that way for the rest of the day. It can feel a little heavy if you aren’t used to wearing full coverage make-up, so in these cases I suggest introducing yourself to the range slowly by first using Double Wear Light. This product, like the stay-in place foundation, lasts to it’s full potential for 15 hours, but has a more lightweight texture and feel on application. This foundation is aimed to provide a more medium coverage, whereas the stay-in place is aimed for full. Both of these won’t be melting in the heat, or smudging off onto clothing, and they really do what they say on the tin. (both £29.50)

Double Wear Brush on Glow Highlighter: This is a super ‘pen’ style product! You firstly click the bottom to release the concealer, which can be brushed onto skin with the applicator brush. As well as concealing, it contains illuminating and highlighting properties so it can also be used to help contour. Along with applying a touch to my undereyes, top of my cheeks, down my nose and cupids bow, I also use it to sweep away any particles that fall down from my eyeshadow. It’s not a full-on shimmering highlighter, more of a subtle product to add brightness to the face and provide a radiant glow. (£23.50)

The two photos below show me wearing the Double Wear Stay-in Place Foundation in Pure Beige – a slightly warm colour for myself as I wanted it to blend in with the false tan I had been working up.

what emma did emma campbell
what emma did emma campbell
The photograph below is a daytime look wearing Double Wear Light in shade Intensity, which is a lighter shade and one that fits my natural pale skin very well. So as you can see, I have used this to provide a more everyday look, whereas I have used the full coverage foundation to provide a more specific look.

emma campbell whatemmadid

double wear light
As you may have guessed, I am a big fan of Estee Lauder Double Wear. I love it because what it says it does, it really does do, delivering full and medium coverage flawlessly. The products also have a huge array of shades to chose from, so it’s best to pop to a counter and have a consultation for the ideal colour match.

I hope this helps if you needed some foundation advice!

Fashion: Bonbi Forest Jewellery

2015 June 30
by What Emma Did

If you’re a lover of all things illustrated, such as textiles, clothing, accessories and artwork, I have a feeling you will love Bonbi Forest. The screen printed design brand is the brain child of Lee May Foster Wilson, a graduate in BA Hons Fine Art Painting. Retailing a cute and quirky array of scarves, jewellery, clothing, home and paper goods, it’s also an ethical brand, using hand screen printing onto fabrics using water based inks, which are much kinder to the environment than the ‘Plastisol’ inks used by many large manufacturers.

I’m pretty happy to officially own my first Bonbi Forest possession, which is a gorgeous jewellery set consisting of the Tiny White Pearl Star Necklace, and the Of The Sky Pearl White Earrings

bonbi forest
bonbi forest
The chain is fairly long so that the pendant sits fairly low, which is how I like my neckwear.  It features a small hammered brass star adorning a shimmering pearl white perspex triangle –super versatile to sit well with most outfits and occasions. I find the jewellery from here has the nicest finishing touches, – this style in particular is finished with a little brass star and clear Bonbi Forest tag.

The Earrings are a perfect match and are so adorable. They consist of shimmering pearl, white perspex geometric triangles with a hammered brass moon and star on each, and drop from gold plated stud posts. The back of one butterfly is adorned with a signature Bonbi Forest star, which looks so cute dangling down from behind my ear when I wear these.

what emma did
what emma did

The brand really reminds me of a unique and individual place to shop gifts for those friends you may have who love shopping at boutiques, craft markets and from independent designers. It’s a real ‘gift’ brand in my eyes, with one off pieces you won’t be duplicating up with anyone else!

The set I am wearing consists of the necklace at £16.40, and the earrings at £14.50.

Have a browse yourself if you like over at the lovely little website here.

Beauty: Bali Health Lounge Manchester Review

2015 June 29
by What Emma Did

Everyone loves spa treatments, but do you ever find yourself a little bit overwhelmed with the choice of spa’s, beauty salons and health clubs to chose from? You know you need a well deserved facial, massage, pedicure…. but where do you start when searching for the ideal one?

Nothing beats a good recommendation, therefore I wanted to share my experience at Manchester’s Bali Health Lounge, which is tucked away in the bustle of China Town. I walk through China Town on my way home from work, and for some reason never even noticed this place. This Health Lounge is honestly is like a tropical relaxation paradise hidden away at 48 George Street, and I’m over joyed to now know about it…

bali health lounge
bali health lounge
bali health lounge
I was booked into Bali Health Lounge the other week for a 60 minute full body massage. Boy did I need one – as some of you will know I’ve had a hectic week following up from my Manchester Evening News feature; preparing for an ASOS marketplace launch (I’ll post about this very soon!) renovating my new house, a stressful month at the media agency I work at, and obviously a hectic blog schedule and various events which has left me achy, tired, sleep deprived and with sore shoulders from constantly hunching over my laptop as my new office isn’t yet set up.

First of all – the interior. I didn’t expect to be blown away by such a beautiful scene. The spa is decorated like a tranquil Thai spa… leafy plants and indoor trees are situated around a relaxing seating area with large comfy cushions, lots of wicker additions and a calming vibe. Everything is so calming, I felt like I was inside an indoor forest but one with lots of space and comfy seating! I was greeted by lovely polite and attentive staff, who took me to a seating area and offered me a bottle of water and some magazines to read, before my therapist came along and introduced herself. We discussed my health, skin, and overall well being before being taken to a relaxing dark room with little twinkling lights on the ceiling which made me feel like I was gazing up at the stars.

bali health lounge
bali health lounge
bali health lounge
I jotted down my therapists name so I could personally thank her in this post, however due to a busy blog schedule and a week or two passing, the name has completely disappeared, however I am certain that all therapists here adhere to the same standard – professional and polite. That is really all you want your therapist to be, isn’t it? She explained the procedure of the massage and time schedules, before carrying out what can only be described as 60 minutes of heaven. I am actually a really ticklish person, and often flinch a little during a back massage, but this therapist in particular applied just the right amount of pressure to avoid me wriggling around holding in a laugh!

bali health lounge
bali health lounge
After the massage, I was taken into the lounge and asked to chose a thai inspired tea from the extensive menu. I was absolutely spoilt for choice – every type of floral tea was included! I ended up opting for the Chrysanthemum infused tea, which came in a little teapot for one. It was delicously warming yet refreshing at the same time, and was the ultimate ending to my lovely massage session.

I would describe my experience at Bali Health Lounge as a luxury one – if you are looking to be really looked after and pampered by the best, in the most uplifting of environments, then there is no need to look any further (if you live in Manchester that is). I took away a little treatment and price list with me so I can share with you some of the other amazing treatments they provide:

Facial Treatments: Essential facials/ Prescriptive facials/ Advanced facials – £47 – £75

Body Treatments: Exfoliation/ Leg treatments/ Back treatments/ Deep tissue massage/ Swedish massage/ Reflexology / Indian head massage/ Pregnancy massage/ Hot stone massage/ Herbal massage

Manicure & Pedicure: Bali/ Shellac

Wax: various options for both men and women

Tinting: Lash and Brow

Plus lots of other packages and promotions. One of the main brands this spa uses is PAYOT – which has a really good reputation within the beauty industry so I was happy to see this upon my arrival. The place reminded me of a lovely day out for Mother and Daughter, or for a small hen party group who want to indulge in sheer bliss.

Take a look at the website here for a full round-up of offerings, and I really would recommend paying a visit if you need some health lounge inspiration!

Fashion: Tangerine Dreaming

2015 June 28
by What Emma Did

Paid much attention yet to the hottest colours for Spring/Summer 2015? I’m currently making a few mental lists for items to bring me with for Barcelona next month, so I decided to draw up some help from this seasons most loved colour: tangerine. Not as in-your-face as blood orange or neon coral, instead this on-trend colour is a pastel version of one our favourite bright shades, reminiscent of Summer days and fruity cocktails. I’m even wearing it on my nails everyday this week, in the form of Barry M’S Gelly Hi-Shine Nail Paint

Barry M Gelly

Tangerine is actually a colour which compliments most skin colours and shades. I was worried at one point that it may make my pale skin look a little washed out, but when I spotted some photographs of me from last year wearing a light orange and gold strap evening top, followed by a one shoulder tangerine dress, I realised that it actually gave me a warm glow, and also worked brilliantly with my blonde hair. As always, I love to turn to Forever Unique for Summer style inspiration, and as trend-leaders for all occasionwear and swimwear, I knew they would have a luscious collection in featuring this shade.

And I was right. Take a look at my tangerine dream wish list for Barcelona with Forever Unique:

forever Unique

forever unique

forever unique
forever unique
The above are part of Forever Unique’s Swimwear and Beachwear collection – how fabulous are these for upcoming holidays?

forever unique
forever unique
forever unique
forever unique

I am majorly in love with the playsuit with the gorgeous cross back detailing. If I’m revealing my legs, I like to keep my arms covered up in some way, so this playsuit is perfectly ideal for me.

Have you got any tangerine inspired pieces in your wardrobe this Summer? Or if not, is there another shade your are crushing over for your holiday colour palette?

Beauty: Grow Gorgeous Hair Growth Serum and Masque

2015 June 28
by What Emma Did

I’m currently on a serious mission to grown my hair. Not just hair length, but I’m aiming to improve the thickness and overall condition of my hair too. It’s been over processed and bleached far too much in the last twelve months, so I am making it my duty to grow out the harsh blonde and hope for longer, thicker and healthier looking locks.

The amount of breakage and snapping ends during the past few months alerted me to give my hair a well deserved break. I last got my hair coloured with half a head of highlights back in March, and since then I have been growing my natural colour through. It’s going to take a long time to get a full head of natural hair colour in a tip top condition, but if I don’t start now, I’ll never do it!

grow gorgeous
grow gorgeous
As well as stopping the bleach, I’ve been researching into hair care products which aim to promote healthy hair growth and can assist me during this hair journey. A brand that I found particularly interesting is Grow Gorgeous – an innovative brand from DECIEM, which offers a product range of masques, serums, shampoos, conditioners and treatment products to encourage growth and care for your hair. The one’s I have been trying are the lovely packaged Hair Growth Serum, £29.99, and the Overnight to Gorgeous Hair Masque, £19.99. The serum comes in a chunky little bottle with a pipet type applicator to avoid messy applications. Serums can be fairly greasy to apply, so I appreciated the ease of using this applicator to add a few drops of the serum to my scalp before massaging this in before bedtime.

My hair is very fine, therefore I only need two to three  drops to avoid making my hair look a little lank. For thicker hair, I would up this to three or four drops.  The product has an advanced formula containing a complex blend of 7 technologies which claim to help hair appear visibly longer, thicker and fuller looking. I’ve been using this for a month now, and I have noticed that since using this every evening, my roots seem to have appeared super visible! Which means faster hair growth, right? I definitely think in terms of speeding up the growing process, this serum is working it’s magic. I can’t comment on thickness yet until I see more growth, but it smells delightful, so I’m more than happy to continue trying!

grow gorgeous
 grow gorgeous
As for the hair masque, I’m also under the impression that so far, so good. This is a product I don’t use every evening at the moment, more like a few nights a week when I know I am going to wash my hair in the shower the following morning. I simply apply a towel to my pillow, massage in a generous amount of masque to my hair, sleep, and rinse out the next day! Again, this smells divine – a lovely calming scent whilst drifting off to sleep certainly makes me excited to use this on the chosen nights. I feel that it works as an intensive conditioner to really help get my hair in a more silky, smooth ‘state of hair’. This is probably down to it’s fantastic hair loving ingredients: an expert blend of hyaluronic acid, purified mushroom and tamarind derivatives which combine with Amazonian acai and palm oils.

When I wash this out, I skip conditioning as the masque has done all the work overnight. I can definitely rate this for improving the condition and healthy look and feel of hair. Sometimes a good haircare regime really needs hero products that work together to really deliver results, and that’s how I currently feel about this brand. The Grow Gorgeous Serum along with the Grow Gorgeous Overnight Masque seem to work in harmony to encourage growth yet promote healthy, shiny, well conditioned locks…

grow gorgeous
Grow Gorgeous is available from a range of retailers such as Boots, Look Fantastic and HQ Hair, but you can find out more about the brand and all it’s lovely products at the Grow Gorgeous Website.

Lifestyle: Living and Working in the UK

2015 June 27
by What Emma Did

Today’s post has a slight spin from the usual fashion, beauty, food and events type features I regular post. I decided to leave the product reviews to one side (just for one day mind…) and put together a feature about a topic that will be of interest to a lot of my international readers. It’s also dedicated to my Australian friends who I spent a lot of time with when I was living over there, who I know are avid little travelers!

I was recently catching up with a lovely Sydney born and bred girl who I worked with on the other side of the world, who told me she is off on her European travels again but wants to stay in London for a year and work in our capital. She asked me for some tips and advice on working in the UK and what general lifestyle pointers I can give her a ‘heads up’ about before she arrives, which got me thinking – what a nice travel related blog post idea! There must be so many people from all countries around the world who wonder how easy/difficult it is to work in the UK, but once they have got a rough work plan figured out, of course people want to know about lifestyle expectations over in the UK. (The below photos are taken from my travelling trip and spending a few days in Singapore…)

what emma did
marina bay sands

I’ve put together this feature which gives some pointers and tips which I hope can be of some help to anyone out there interested in living and working in the UK. I’m no travel expert, but I have visited some pretty cool places and left my life in Manchester for a year in Sydney, Australia, so I feel I can draw upon my experience and offer some personal advice. A more in-depth round-up you could check out is this lovely article about Working in the UK which has been put together to give some informative guidance, do have a little peak here!

1. Passport and Visa Programmes
You will need a passport, from the Working Holiday Visa Programme with the UK, valid for the period you will be on holiday. Currently, the participating countries are below, although it can be subject to change:

  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Japan
  • New Zealand
  • Monaco
  • Taiwan

2. Money Money Money
The authorities may ask you to prove you have enough money to support yourself while you’re in the UK without needing public support. When I moved across to Australia, I had to ensure I had more than £3,000 in my bank account to enter the country. It differs when coming to the UK, but even so, you will need significant proof of enough funds to keep you going incase you struggle to secure work. Before you jet off, make sure you save up as much as you possibly can. Not even just to show the authorities, but so you can enjoy travelling the country and sightseeing for as long as you can. Remember that every city is difference; some are built up and have lots of wide-scale opportunities. Other cities are not as affluent and struggle to cater opportunities for everyone’s industry (check out how amazing the city of Singapore looks below! I took this photo from one of the tallest hotels…)

singapore skyline

3. Types of Visa’s
One way to stay longer than two years in the UK is  via the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme (HSMP). This is created for people with skills deemed valuable to the UK. You don’t need to have an existing job offer to be approved for this visa, and it helps you to set up a longer life aim in the UK. Take a look at seasonal workers and student visas too, incase you wish to be here for a shorter period of time.

4. The Weather
When I was planning my life in Australia, I planned it all around the weather. For the people out there coming to the UK from sunnier climates, be aware that England can be very cold! The further South of the country is obviously the warmest, but no matter where you are, the Winters are continuously cold, and the Summer is always a little bit hit or miss. Plan your fashion around layering up, cosy coats and stylish boots, learn to take an interest in indoor activities, and learn to make friends with a good old trusty umbrella! Lots of people in the UK regularly work out indoors at the gym, so look into joining health clubs with swimming pools, exercised classes and a fully equipped gym, indulge in cinema evenings and dining out, and take advantage of the luxurious shopping centers that home coffee shops, boutiques, restaurants, bars and salons. And here we go again with me slotting in another travel photo (this one is a personal favourite!) – the below is from the hot and humid Singapore, stood at the top of the Marina Sans Bay Hotel. Although scorching hot and sweaty, the skies remained grey and dull the entire time. You can’t always get the desired weather!

marina bay sands

5. The Religion
The UK is a diverse place for religion, so whatever religion you practice, don’t let it worry you about fitting into the culture of the UK. Search online for groups who share the same religion, and there will be opportunities to meet up and gain first hand recommendations for ideal churches, temples or even religious events. When I travelled to Singapore, I was amazed at the beauty of the temples surrounding the city, and often visited them in the morning when the locals were praying. The people of Singapore welcomed me in, although of course I adhered to their dress code and covered up my legs with their decorative scarves.

singapore temple
singapore temple
singapore temple
singapore temple
what emma did temple

6. The Lifestyle 
This final point is a very broad sum-up of life in England, so for all of you thinking of experiencing our country, familarise yourself with this jumble of keywords which reflect UK life…
Football/ Starbucks/ Rain/ Freindships / Shopping / Gyms / Concerts / Gigs / Large Music Scene / Celebrities / Fashion / Reality TV / Tesco Supermarkets / Hoodies / Scarves / Trench Coats / Ankle Boots / Coffee Dates / Internet Obsessed / Friends Round For Dinner / Nights Out / Cocktail Bars / Indie Bars / Buses / The Tube / Black Cabs / Take-aways / Fast Food / Dominos Pizza Late At Night / Friendly /


Beauty: NEXT Make Me Beautiful Lip Chubby

2015 June 25
by What Emma Did

So who knew NEXT retailed fabulous make-up? I was aware they had an extensive collection of cosmetics, but had not really looked into the products in too much detail before. However, I attended a lovely event with NEXT last week (all about their lovely lingerie range, which will be coming up on the blog soon!) and I ended up coming away with the cutest Make Me Beautiful Hot Pink Lip Chubby, which retails at £8.

As it is designed as a chunky hot pink crayon type lip colour, it needs no tutorial. You just pop off the lid and glide over your lips, filling in with this girly shade. I start by carefully drawing round the edges of my lips first, then carefully filling in the rest of my lips. MWAH!

what emma did emma campbell
NEXT lip crayon
The colour is so intense and extremely pigmented, and actually lasts a good while too. I constantly lick my lips and touch my mouth and all sorts, meaning I am a nightmare with lipsticks that have the tendancy to fade quickly. This Lip Chubby seems to stay put for a couple of hours before needing a touch up, and as this shade in particular is quite bright, you really don’t need to apply too much to begin with.

what emma did emma campbell
what emma did emma campbell
I know this is a super quick blog post, but I wanted to share this with you in case you needed a little extra beauty gift for a friend that doesn’t cost the Earth, or if you simply need a lipstick update for yourselves. I’m really intrigued to check out the rest of the beauty range at NEXT now! And whilst I’m here… I’ll be sharing these photos showing off my pinky lips and other cool make-up finds on my Instagram account, which I update daily with my favourite products. If you haven’t already, why not give me a follow? I love coming across new followers so be sure to say hello…

Fashion: Designer Bag Heaven with

2015 June 25
by What Emma Did

I’m sure most of you will agree that us girls mainly share one big weakness; designer handbags. They are like little treasures, so precious and beautiful and worth (almost) more than our lives. For those lucky enough to carry one around everyday, I’m sure you will agree that they give you that sense of feeling special, like everyone is looking at what you are carrying on your arm, being envious of your little companion.

I own two designer bags, but before you think I may be quite rich and a loyal premium brand shopper, this couldn’t be much further from the truth. I own a Miu Miu bag which is coming up to being eight years old (It’s a little tired now… but still going strong! Might try and push another eight years out of her yet…) which was purchased with a department store discount, and I have a lovely Michael Kors clutch bag which was a gift. I dream of owning a collection – imagine having a dedicated shelf which displayed an array of beautifully designed bags?

artisan manchester
The other week I allowed myself to get lost in designer handbag heaven, with the AW15 preview event for held at Artisan in Manchester’s Spinningfieds. MyBag is an online shopping destination for all things bag related; there are clutches, handbags, totes, rucksacks, messenger bags… every type of bag you can think of. As well as retailing some of the most loveliest designer styles from the likes of Aspinal of London, LuLu Guinness and Ralph Lauren, I was pleased to see a couple of more mid-range bag brands such as Grafea (you can check out the photoshoot I did with them last year here) and The Cambridge Satchel Company. Some of the designer collections held absolutley stunning hero piees – tote bags that could bring along with you to special occasions, and some more classic bags that make breath taking everyday companions. The Lulu Guinness Signature lip design clutch below in a deep purple shade had to be one of my favourite A/W styles… it’s super cute yet also has that grown up glamour feel too!

lulu guinness
The colour theme throughout the showcased collections was predominately warm, earthy autumnal shades, such as burgundies, rich browns and deep scarlett’s. I love Autumnal and wintery colour palettes when it comes to accessories much more than Summer brights, so I was thinking up ways of incorporating all of these styles into my outfits! So terrible… I couldn’t resist picking up each individual bag and holding it against my trench coat.

My Bag
My Bag
The above collections from Paul Smith (which is now very sophisticated and classic, without the bold logo and colours which has been prominent within the brand for so long) and Aspinal of London seemed firm favourites amongst the majority of fashion bloggers eyeing up the collections on the evening. The quality of these designs are just exquisite – they really are classic and timeless bags for life.

Grafea Rucksack
The Cambridge Satchel Company
Hooray! The trusty satchels from The Cambridge Satchel Company made an appearance. I always find satchels and rucksacks are more for the laid back, sports luxe type fashionista, you know the more creative type girl who stylishly pulls of boyfriend jeans and a ‘shirt-and-jumper’ layered up look. They give off a real trendy vibe, and if I could afford one right now, I’d make sure I owned one of these beauties.

Aspinal of London
Artisan Event
The event was a fantastic evening put on by the team at MyBag, in a super trendy venue which matched the brand perfectly. I always love attending the loft style, urban cool-ness of Artisan; MyBag definitely picked the right setting for showcasing the sneak peak preview of Autumn Winter ’15. Check out the uber cute personalised initial keyring and bag charm I managed to go home with from The Cambridge Satchel Company too…

the cambridge satchel company
Whether it’s a Karl Lagerfeld catwalk special handbag you want for yourself, or a statement Lulu Guinness Keepsake clutch to gift a friend, MyBag is a fabulous destination for browsing the newest items. Just be warned you’ll be dying and drifting to handbag heaven!

Fashion: Clothing Suppliers UK To Help With Branding

2015 June 24
by What Emma Did

As the majority of my readers know, I’ve recently started a small clothing business which sits under the brand. I haven’t yet brought it to the stage where I have been able to physically brand the clothing, so I wanted to feature this post which highlights some important pointers for clothing businesses and start-ups to consider when looking at branding their collections. Strategically, there’s no better way to make your company name recognizable than a dynamic brand through options like beautifully articulated embroidery or heat seal.

LV bag

What do the following have in common? Apple, Coca-Cola, Starbucks, Microsoft, Google, IBM, McDonalds, Samsung, Toyota, GE, Disney, AT&T, Amazon, Louis Vuitton, BMW, Oracle, Nike, Intel, Wal-Mart, Verizon, American Express, Honda, Mercedes Benz, and Budweiser.

You probably have figured it out: according to Forbes magazine, those are the top brands in the world. No small business owner believes they’ll suddenly gain similar brand recognition, but those iconic brands can certainly provide inspiration. Building your brand directly correlates to building your business.

Without a huge marketing budget (and really, what small business has one?), it’s smart to strategize carefully and think about what you are able to do – what’s feasible, given your business and resources. Critically, you must have a goal in mind. What do you want your branding to do? What is important to you in creating a distinctive brand? In addition to the physical brand itself (the brainstorming, creation, design and execution) what is important to you? You may be surprised to know that there are brands that evoke certain emotions and feelings. Yes, it’s manipulative, but that is the intention. Clothing suppliers UK can provide invaluable services which help with your clothing brand with the following options:



  • Embroidery is a colorful and eye-catching way to publicize your brand, as it can enhance clothing or uniforms.
  • Company logos
  • Company emblems
  • Clothing Suppliers UK will identify requirements of the project, based on the number of stiches and threads and provide a quote, with respect to size, garment type and turn-around time.

Heat Seal

  • Hottest, new means of promoting a company and its image
  • Produces full photographic quality images on clothing
  • Not only primary colors, but beyond
  • Garments can be printed matte, gloss, raised text, glittered, glow-in-the-dark and more
  • Provide supplier with company logo, emblem or your choice of design
  • How many do you need?
  • What type of garment will this be used on?
  • Your image can be kept on “record” so that new and/or replacement garments can be created

    Transfer systems

  • LithoPlastisol: popular and versatile, it combines lithographic offset links and a back-up plastisol white, and allows the production of cold peel transfers of almost photographic quality. LithoPolytran transfers can be applied to more difficult fabrics, Neoprene and some nylons and items such as draw string bags, tents, and CD holders.
  • LithoPolytran: combines benefits of lithography and silkscreen, with full tonal range and clarity of full color litho. Most versatile transfer system suitable for wide variety of fabrics his process takes away the cost of having to order different processes to cover all your needs
  • Litho Glitter Plastisol: popular with High Street retailer and fashion house markets, extremely versatile, it can be combined with four-color screen, litho print, flat color or glow-in-the-dark. Glitter available for matt and gloss; process works for both light and dark fabrics
  • Polytran: the process is extremely versatile and works on light, dark and other colors of fabric, and can be used on t-shirts to bags.
  • Plastisol: adhesive backer can be modified; glitter can be incorporated and is viable for more traditionally “difficult” fabrics like Neoprene, some nylons, and for items like drawstring bags, tents and CD holders.
  • Hots: colors are applied directly onto dark garments (no flash process and opacity is increased). Completed project is soft to the touch and can contain more than seven colors.
  • Glow in the Dark
  • Puff
  • Matt& Glass Plastisol
  • Standard Opaque
  • Standard Glitter
  • Standard Clear
  • Universal Opaque
  • Universal Metallic
  • Universal Sub Block
  • Multi-Colored Flock
  • Metallic Foil
  • Gloss Glitter
  • NyloTrans
  • Elastica
  • Tufftrans


      Branded Work Wear

  • Looks professional
  • Gets your company logo to the masses
  • A uniform eliminates the dress code
  • Uniforms promote security
  • Economical
  • Reliable Image
  • Work Culture
  • Promotes recognition
  • Sets you apart from competition
  • Tells people about the brand
  • Motivates the direction of staff
  • Generate referrals
  • Customer expectations are set
  • Represents you and your promise to customers


What Emma Did