The neutral 9-piece sustainable office capsule wardrobe

Warm coffees, colorful leaves, and neutral outfits – autumn is here. 

I love a good tonal ensemble and the palette is gorgeous for office. Beige is in trend, but the nice thing about wearing a trendy color is that you can still wear it for years. Silhouettes and details date, colors doesn’t.

So that’s one of the reasons why I’m fine with being on-trend at the moment. The second reason is that I love neutral colors since I became a mom. The idea of wearing something that is one sticky handprint away from a dry-clean makes me feel very elegant and grown-up. No more banana in my hair, no sir!

From these 9 neutral pieces, I can put together several great outfits. They all go together and can be mixed and matched all autumn long. It’s a great little sustainable office capsule wardrobe. Comfy and stylish, amazing for a business trip.

Oh, and they are all by sustainable brands too.

If you too love neutrals, I say go for it. Just pick quality over quantity, great fabrics, and classic cuts. You will enjoy them for years.

Want to look amazing at the office for years to come? Why not put together your own sustainable office capsule wardrobe.

All links are affiliate links. 

 

Are you ready to drop trends and find your own personal style?

Are you ready to drop trends and find your own personal style? - We keep talking about personal style as if it's something we are just born with. Some kind of intuition of what suits us the best and will make us look and feel effortless.  ... but it's really not.

We keep talking about personal style as if it’s something we are just born with. Some kind of intuition of what suits us the best and will make us look and feel effortless.

… but it’s really not.

Sure, there are some people who come out fashionable from the womb. No denying it. But for most people like you and me, it’s a skill we have to teach ourselves.

The problem with personal style is that no one else can pick yours for you. This is why trends are so addictive! It takes the hard work out of building a wardrobe and dressing, even if it’s shortsighted.

To hone in on your personal style you have to do the legwork. On the plus side – it’s actually really fun. The idea is basically that you have to try on as many different items as you can and judge each and every one of them on these 3 criteria;

  • Do I feel great and like “me” in this item?
  • Am I comfortable wearing it?
  • Will I like it just as much in a few year’s time?

If the answer is yes to all 3 of these questions. Then the item could be style-defining.

Too many people see a style they like on someone else and decide to adopt it. It never works out well. Because you are not in the other person’s mind and you do not have their life or their body.

You are you, so you should look like you, not them. This is why it’s silly of magazines to recommend you to dress like your favorite celebrity. It’s a quick fix that could work for a while, but it will not help you find your own personal style.

Are you ready to drop trends and find your own personal style? - We keep talking about personal style as if it's something we are just born with. Some kind of intuition of what suits us the best and will make us look and feel effortless.  ... but it's really not.

…ok so what if you have no clue at all, I mean nada, of what your personal style is?

Basically, that was me a few years ago.

I was lucky enough to fit most types of clothes and clothing and I got away with looking trendy most of the time. But I was constantly flip-flopping between almost stylized versions of other people. I was the rock chic, the cashmere homebody, the cocktail dress princess, the sneaker and hoodie girl, and the classic conservative depending on what my inspiration was for the day.

And it sounds very creative and fun. I’m not going to lie and say that it wasn’t. However, if you would have asked me what my personal style was, I wouldn’t have been able to give you an answer. Nothing I wore truly felt like “me”, I always felt like someone else. Almost like I was playing the role of someone for a day.

…and you can only imagine what a mismatched hodgepodge my wardrobe was. Oh.My.Lord did I have a lot of useless clothes!

So it was really a great challenge the day I decided I had to take the bull by its horns and actually go through the process of finding myself style-wise.

This is what I did;

  • I picked out my 5 absolute favorite pieces of clothing and laid them out on my bed.
  • From there I began to build outfits. I would put one of the 5 on and then dive as deep into my wardrobe as I could to try to find all the items that would match.
  • Every time I put together an outfit I really loved and felt good and comfortable in, I took a photo of it on my phone.
  • Every piece of clothing that belonged to one of these outfits were “safe” from my big clear out. And I hung them all up together to get an overview of colors and styles.
  • By doing this I could actually physically see my own style take shape in front of me. I really zoned in on cuts, styles, and colors that I truly enjoyed and that looked good on me.

And voila.

Not only did I have a rail full of the creme de la creme of my wardrobe, but I also had an image library of outfits to go back to when I was lacking inspiration.

I’m not going to lie and say that my personal style always is 100% clear to me. I believe that the process goes on forever. The difference now is that I’m learning from my mistakes. And I’m using my own intuition instead of relying on other people’s tastes.

Are you ready to find your own personal style?

Photo – Rosalind Alcazar. Trousers by H&M Conscious collection and blouse by Troy London (gift).
You can find similar items below. (affiliate links)

 

Mindful Monday 7th October – My affirmation, dream, inspiration, and lesson this week

Sustainable fashion blogger Tess Montgomery - Winter whites, with a touch of pink.

Hi guys, how are you doing today?

I have a really nice week ahead. Not too much planned, the hubby will be away for a few days and I will have time to read a book in bed and snuggle the dog (who is not allowed in bed when the hubby is home..) Sure I’m solo parenting, but to be honest I don’t find it hard anymore.

It’s sooo much easier having a 2-year-old than a baby, holy cow. I’m finally feeling like I have a life again and slowly but surely I’m building a Tess 2.0. One with a nice work-life balance that can meet friends for a dinner now and then, but also spends plenty of quality time with the little dude.

I love that Ace can tell me what is up now. He will let me know when he wants or needs something and he is constantly making me laugh with his newly found toddler logic. Mom life is epic at the moment.

…and yes I know this probably is another phase and it will get harder again. But for now, I’m just going to enjoy it.

This is my affirmation dream, inspiration, and lesson this week;

My mantra this week  – “Slow down”. To slow down life a little bit actually gives us the opportunity to cut away anything that doesn’t suit where I’m going. It’s really easy just to take on more and more, but eventually, we will drown. So by slowing down we are forced to get rid of things that aren’t essential and that we don’t really want to do anymore.

My affirmation this week – ” It’s ok to say no”. I often feel like I have to say yes to as much as I possibly can, to make sure I don’t miss out on anything important. But it also means that I often have way more on my plate than I should. So this week I’m not only focusing on saying no, but I’m also going to allow myself to feel good about it.

My goal this week – This week my goal is to do exactly what I need to do, not more or less. Instead, I’m going to focus on feeding my creativity by reading books, listening to podcasts and watching documentaries.

My dream of the week  – I dream about investing further in property. Because of Brexit, we had to slow down a bit and wait it out for a while. But I’m itching to do another project. There are few things I find more invigorating than doing up houses. It’s like a real-life “The Sims” (but without the money-cheats ha!)

My focus this week  – This week my focus is on mindfulness. I’m going to listen inwards and take time to be grateful.

Mindful Monday 7th October - My affirmation, dream, inspiration, and lesson this week

The event of the week – I’m looking forward to going to an event that my lovely friend Sophie is hosting on Wednesday morning. I have a feeling it will be a fun one.

My lesson from last week – I can do trips away for modeling just like I have done before I had Ace. Sure I don’t want to go for weeks on end. But a couple of days are really doable AND I get some time to myself. Something every mother needs now and then.

My little luxury this week – This week my little luxury will be a date night with Garth on Saturday evening. It’s important that we take off the mum and dad hats now and then and just get to be a married couple again.

My inspiration this week  – This week I’m inspired by the “Spark intention podcast”. I try to listen to it when I’m relaxing on my spike mat before bed. It leaves me feeling really positive and inspired.

What is your affirmation, dream, inspiration, and lesson this week?

Photo – Rosalind Alcazar.

All the items I’m wearing in this post are old or sold out. But you can find similar items below (affiliate links)

 

3 key items for a beginners basic sustainable wardrobe

Tess Montgomery's 3 key items for a beginners basic sustainable wardrobe - I know most of us don't start from scratch when we build our basic sustainable wardrobe.  It wouldn't be a very suitable thing to do since the most sustainable item is the one already in your wardrobe. However, if you would start fresh (or just need to update your basics) and wanted me to recommend 3 great pieces from sustainable brands, that would get great Price Per Wear, I would recommend these;

I know most of us don’t start from scratch when we build our basic sustainable wardrobe. 

It wouldn’t be a very suitable thing to do since the most sustainable item is the one already in your wardrobe.

However, if you would start fresh (or just need to update your basics) and wanted me to recommend 3 great pieces from sustainable brands, that would get great Price Per Wear, I would recommend these;

The comfiest blue jeans by People Tree.

Blue jeans go with everything and we all have and love them. Next time you need to get a new pair (because you have worn your old ones until they fell apart of course) why not invest in a pair made of 100% organic cotton?

They are straight, mid-rise and the fit is slightly relaxed. A little bit 70s, a little bit 90s. I don’t like too much stretch in my denim, so these are perfect for me and a massive favorite in my basic sustainable wardrobe

You can find them here. 

The perfect white t-shirt by Theo + George. 

You can thank me later (a few of you already have!) Slightly oversized, v or crew neck, perfect length, not see-through and washes really well. I use mine all the time and the 2 for 1 offer is great value for money. I’m very slowly working on exchanging all my old t-shirts for these from Theo + George.

You can find them here. 

The most versatile strappy midi-dress by ninety percent.

Dress it down with sneakers or up with heels. Add jewelry, scarves, knitted jumpers, blazers and belts. There is no end to the variation and use you can get out of something as simple as a strappy midi-dress like this.

This one by sustainable and charitable brand Ninety Percent is a part of NET-A-Porter’s new initiative NET SUSTAIN. It’s made in 96% environmentally friendly Tencel. It’s one of those items you will wear any season, any occasion for many years to come.

You can find it here. 

…ok your turn! I want to hear all about your favorite items in your basic sustainable wardrobe. Let’s share what we love!

 

#MINDFLUENCING – It’s time to hit unfollow on anxiety

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The blog post "It's time to hit unfollow on anxiety"  is a part of my #MINDFLUENCING campaign I created in collaboration with Instagram in January 2019. It's an attempt to inspire us to be more mindful both as creators and as followers on social media.

When I first joined Instagram I wanted to follow anyone cool or famous. I remember going through a popular actor’s follow list and basically just hit follow on anyone she did. 

It felt like I was given a cheeky little sneaky peek into their lives and I loved it.

At first, Instagram was made up of slightly blurry photos with a crappy “arty” filter on top. 80% of what we posted on our feeds was selfies and the rest was food. I would get to the end of my feed and try to keep scrolling just in case there was anything I had missed. (when was the last time you got to the end of your feed?)

It was very organic and honest. Litte snaps from someone else’s life that made you feel like you got to walk in their shoes for a moment.

So it wasn’t strange that celebrities and “cool” people were those with most followers. If you are going to have a tiny square window into someones every-day, why not make it a glamorous one?

It was all for a bit of fun. …and then Instagram evolved and changed.

The “cool” people became “influencers” and instead of showing what their lives were like behind-the-scenes. They started selling a lifestyle and getting paid for it. All of a sudden the blurry “real” photos became staged settings. The focus disappeared from food and in-the-moment-selfies to lavish lifestyles, on-trend fashion, luxury travel, and trim bodies.

Whoever had the most glamorous life got the most eyeballs and because of this, they made the most money. A monster was born.

Because of this switch, we went from “I know what Lady GaGa had for breakfast today”, to “If I don’t go on flashy holidays in designer outfits I have failed at life.”

Entertainment became competition.

The blog post "It's time to hit unfollow on anxiety"  is a part of my #MINDFLUENCING campaign I created in collaboration with Instagram in January 2019. It's an attempt to inspire us to be more mindful both as creators and as followers on social media.

Queue social media anxiety.

Anytime you feel like you are in direct comparison to someone else and you are not winning, it’s going to make you sad. At times it can inspire you to want to do better. But when you are comparing 100% of your life to someone else’s best 5% it becomes an impossible task to come out on top.

This is when social media went from making the world a smaller place where we all felt a part of a community. To alienating and isolating us as separated entities fighting for attention.

If we discount any biases that could be programmed into the platforms. Social media is from the beginning a pretty neutral place. It is what we make of it. What we feed will grow and what we give attention to will win.

It got pretty bad for a while. We fed all the wrong things and the negative culture of bragging, upmanship, and unhealthy ideals got close to destroying platforms like Instagram. People started coming off it since it didn’t make them feel good anymore.

I personally see it as if we blamed the canvas for the bad painting instead of the artist.

It is, in the end, our own fault that this happened. We created and fed the monster with our follows, likes and comments. We engaged in the wrong things.

I’m not judging anyone because I did the same. I gave in to the competition as an influencer and I followed accounts that made me feel crap. My anxiety levels were always high when I was on Instagram, mainly because I never felt enough. Everyone else was a lot cooler, lived these amazing lives and made all this money.

I felt stuck, boring and left behind.

It took me a long time to figure out that I had done it to myself. I was having anxiety because of who I was choosing to follow. And when I realized it’s always OUR OWN CHOICE what we make of social media. It changed my life.

I decided that I had enough and begun to unfollow at massive speed. As soon as a photo popped up that made me feel in any way anxious, I disengaged.

I hit unfollow on anxiety.

I let hundreds of accounts back out into the universe never to see them again. (Most of them were big mainstream influencers.) Instead, I went out searching for those a bit more similar to me. I found other influencers focusing on feel-good and mindfulness, that instead of making me feel depressed, made me come alive with their posts.

I followed niched tiny accounts with interests I shared and I even got really into some pretty funny meme-accounts that would make me smile for a second. I basically gave my Instagram feed a makeunder. Gone was the perfect photos with no depth and instead I was met by actual interesting and thoughtful things when I logged in.

These days if an account doesn’t entertain, educate or inspire me. It’s not for me.

I’m done with cute photos of skinny 20 something girls with short half-witty captions. They give me nothing.

Instead, I love to follow those with an interesting life, with experience and knowledge that are generous enough to share this in longer well-written captions that truly feed my soul.

Now Instagram and other social media platforms are a positive part of my life instead of a negative one. I go there to be better, learn more, meet interesting people from the whole world and feed my creativity.

Exactly what it was meant to be like from the start. Before I messed it up by following the wrong people and getting stuck in a circle of anxiety and comparison.

Are you ready to take control of your social media? Maybe its time for you too to hit unfollow on anxiety?

The blog post “It’s time to hit unfollow on anxiety”  is a part of my #MINDFLUENCING campaign I created in collaboration with Instagram in January 2019. It’s an attempt to inspire us to be more mindful both as creators and as followers on social media. You can read more about the campaign here. 

My outfit is all pre-loved or sold out. But you can find a few similar items here (affiliate links)

Photo – Rosalind Alcazar. Location – The Ivy Chelsea Garden. Jumper by Toteme, leather trousers by Joseph and earrings by Ida Sjöstedt (gifted).

 

Can high street clothes be a part of a sustainable wardrobe?

Can high street clothes be a part of a sustainable wardrobe? After my big Marie Kondo wardrobe clear out in January, when I got rid of 75% of my wardrobe. I was left with 25% of purely good stuff. I owned only things I absolutely adored and would wear over and over again.  Most of it was designer items or at least kind of mid-range and high quality. But there were still a few high street favorites left.

After my big Marie Kondo wardrobe clear out in January, when I got rid of 75% of my wardrobe. I was left with 25% of purely good stuff. I owned only things I absolutely adored and would wear over and over again. 

Most of it was designer items or at least kind of mid-range and high quality. But there were still a few high street favorites left.

When I got high on fast fashion I mainly focused on trend-led items that went out of style almost as soon as I put it on. I was always chasing my next trend fix and knew exactly what was in stock at my favorite high street dealers. Most of the stuff I bought I wore only a couple of times before they felt “done”, “old” and “boring”. And got discarded in the back of my wardrobe or in a box in the basement.

Some stuff broke straight away and others after a couple of washes. A lot went in the bin prematurely because the quality was terrible.

So to be honest, it wasn’t hard at all to get rid of the bulk of it. As soon as I picked something up I knew exactly what pile to put it in just based on the feeling of the fabric in my hands.

However, a couple of items did make the cut and I will tell you why. 

Curating a sustainable timeless wardrobe is about choosing quality over quantity and to give up fast fashion forever.

I haven’t been to a high-street shop since. Gone are the days of impulse shopping or just popping in to have a little look… No more browsing endless websites filled with rows of the same stuff. As addicted as I was to it then, as much it repulses me now.

So shouldn’t I have got rid of all my high street clothes and start fresh? The answer to that question is no. It wouldn’t be very sustainable.

If I have an item from the high street that I actually like and think I will wear in the future, it’s a lot better to keep it than to try to sell it or give it to a charity shop. Because high street brands have pretty poor re-sell value and could end up as landfill or if we are lucky in textile recycling.

So, in the long run, it’s a lot better for the environment that we hold on to it and use it.

This is why you will still see me in high street brands now and then. Most likely I have had the clothes from before I changed my wardrobe and I want to get as much wear out of it as possible. So they are a natural part of my now sustainable wardrobe.

This beige leather dress by Zara is a great example of a high street item I really truly love. I must have bought it more than 5 years ago and even though it wasn’t expensive or high quality it’s holding up really well. I love to layer it with a turtle neck or even a shirt. It’s becoming somewhat of a wardrobe hero, to be honest. 

So even though I’m telling you not to buy high street clothes. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you should get rid of high street clothes. 

I have found a few similar dresses below (affiliate links)

Photo – Rosalind Alcazar

 

The best cleansers in your teens, 20s & 30s

eve lom oil cleanser - Model Tess Montgomery on why cleansers can be a bit tricky. There are loads of options out there, but if you don't know the best cleanser for your skin. You can do more damage than good

Cleansers has always been the one beauty product I have found a bit tricky. There are loads of options out there, but you need to know exactly what will suit your skin, or you can do more damage than good. 

It started in my early teens with one of those hard yellow Clinique soaps that my Mum always used.

It was a terrible choice for me then. It was way too harsh for my skin, so it left me red, sensitive and prone to breakouts. It was only when I forgot to bring it on a trip away and bought a regular drugstore facewash that I realized my soap was the problem.

The facewash that saved my skin then was one of those generic anti-acne brands with lots of salicylic acid. Not a bad choice for a teenager to be fair. The pores are more clogged and we are more prone to get outbreaks from bacteria and excessive sebum at that age. I actually used that one brand for years after that. (Not that I for the life of me can remember what it was called now.) It was the best cleanser for my  skin at that point.

But as we grow up we need less acne prevention and more moisture. We often don’t require the harsh products from our teens in our twenties, as our skin and hormones are a bit more balanced by then.

To be honest, those days the best cleanser was the one that removed make up quickest before I fell into bed at 5 in the morning after a night out. I was modelling full-time and my skin was incredible no matter what I did. Those were the carefree days.

Our 20s are basically our good-skin-without-making-an-effort years.

Eve Lom oil cleanser - Model Tess Montgomery on why cleansers can be a bit tricky. There are loads of options out there, but if you don't know the best cleanser for your skin. You can do more damage than good

Then I hit my 30s and my skin changed again.

It went from oily to dry and I also started worrying about losing my skin’s elasticity. That is basically what wrinkles are – saggy skin. So the longer we can keep our elasticity up, the longer we are wrinkle-free.

A big part of healthy elasticity is moisture. Dry skin will sag, so every part of my skincare routine has to be as mindful of locking in moisture in my skin as possible. The best cleanser in our 30s is the one that will keep us hydrated. As we age our skin loses its ability to keep as much moisture in as before, so we have to count on our products to do the job for us.

Out went any cleanser that made my skin feel stretched, dry or itchy after a wash.

Instead, I focused on oils. I know a lot of you are worried that oil will clog your pores, but if you use a good product you will find that it will only do the opposite. It’s a really gentle way of cleaning your face.

What I do find with oil cleansers is that they are not always great at removing eye makeup. So I make sure to have a really good  eye makeup remover handy. It’s a little bit more faff, but the gain is plump skin that already feels hydrated even before I add my serums and moisturizers.

Once you have experienced the difference between a drying facewash and a moisturizing cleanser, you never go back.

Model Tess Montgomery on why cleansers can be a bit tricky. There are loads of options out there, but if you don't know the best cleanser for your skin. You can do more damage than good

I love trying out different skincare, but when it comes to my cleansers, I never experiment. Once in a blue moon, I will try something IF it’s an oil or in another way claims to be moisturizing. The last thing I want is to strip my skin of all the good work I put into it daily.

Because it is hard work to have great skin when you are over 30. Collagen production drops, moisture levels are lower and we begin to see the consequences of those girl trips to the riviera 10 years ago (sun and booze!).

It’s hard to see our skin change, and it’s easy to regret old mistakes. But there is still a lot we can do.

Now is the time to truly invest in your skin. You are never going to be any younger than you are exactly at this point. And it makes perfect sense to take great care and invest in something you are going to wear every single day and night of your life. Your future self will thank you.

So tell me, what is the best cleanser you use?

At the moment I use Eve Lom cleansing oil capsules. They are a gift from the brand, and I accepted it only because it had the word “oil” in the name. (I’m not one of those influencers that have boxes of products at home. I always ask companies exactly what they want to send me and 75% of the time I say “thank you, but this is not for me.)

But I love Eve Lom and I love these little capsules. They make the process of washing my face feel very luxurious (and they are very photogenic too). They have a super cute case for travel too. 

You can find the cleansers I use right now below (affiliate links). And if you want all my best skincare tips, click here.

 

Mindful Monday 23rd September

Sustainable fashion blogger Tess Montgomery in a hoodie, pink blazer and leather trousers

It’s Monday and time for me to set my week up in a mindful and productive way. 

I hope you guys had a lovely weekend. We spent it down in Somerset with the hubby’s family celebrating our little man’s 2nd birthday. He loved hanging out with his 3 cousins and had an absolute blast. Best birthday ever (well he only had 2 so far…)

This is my goal, dream, inspiration, and lesson this week;

My mantra this week  – “I give myself permission to be myself”. At times we wear so many different hats, it’s hard to remember who we really are under all of the responsibilities. So this week I’m going to make sure to be mindful and connect with myself as often as I can.

My affirmation this week – “Perfection is the enemy of progress”. I have to teach myself to let go of things even when they are not 100% perfect. 75% is better than too late or not at all.

My goal this week – This week I have to work out at least twice. I missed my yoga last week and I really noticed all week. I need my exercise to feel and function at my best.

My dream of the week  – I’m dreaming of a holiday right now. A beach, warm sea and lots of downtime. I will make sure to put a deadline on this dream so it becomes a goal instead.

My focus this week  – We are letting a few selected influencers try out the platform at xInfluence, so that is super exciting. It’s almost completely up and running and soon it’s time for us to launch for real. Exciting times!

It's Monday and time for me to set my week up in a mindful and productive way. This is my goal, dream, inspiration, and lesson this week;

The event of the week – I met up with Josefina for some dinner after work today. I haven’t seen her in ages and it was lovely to go for a meal and just chat for a while. We ate at Bocca di Lupo in Soho, a great Italian with amazing food.

My lesson from last week – Big birthday parties are great, but hanging out with family is even better. At least when you are 2 and life is uncomplicated. It’s the adults that think everything has to be so big and fancy all the time.

My little luxury this week – I’m going to take some time this weekend to finish reading “Homo Deus” (affiliate link). I love Yuval Noah Harari’s books. They always make me think one step further and reflect a bit deeper. It’s like feeding my brain.

My inspiration this week  – This week I’m inspired by the #TOGETHERBAND campaign. I went to an event they hosted during fashion week and I think it’s such a great cause. You simply pick one of the 17 global goals United Nation set to make sure we have a more sustainable world by 2030 and support it by buying the band.

What is your goal, dream, inspiration, and lesson this week?

Photo – Rosalind Alcazar.

 

What is a wardrobe hero? (& my 5 criteria to help you find yours)

What is a wardrobe hero? (& my 5 criteria to help you find yours)

You know those items in your closet that whenever everything else fails, you are sure you can count on? Those are your wardrobe heroes.

Ideally, we would like to have a closet full of only these pieces, but it is a lot easier said than done. It’s hard to know in advance if a garment is to become a favorite or just a once-in-a-while.

So the task of trying to buy only wardrobe heroes is a pretty tough one.

That’s why we are going to start at the other end. Before we do anything else, we need to set our criteria. And the best way of doing this is to look at what we already got hanging in our closets.

The thing is, an item can spark joy without being a wardrobe hero. You can love something and feel amazing wearing it, but it just doesn’t come out to play as often as something else.

For most ladies, a LBD (Litte Black Dress) is a typical wardrobe hero. It’s comfortable, versatile and always saves the day. Other typical wardrobe heroes are your favorite jeans, that black leather jacket you love so much and your comfy every day sneakers. Most of us have these. The leather jacket might be a trench coat and the sneaker a boot, but you get the gist.

Wardrobe heroes have great PPW (Price Per Wear). It doesn’t matter how much they cost when you bought it, because we are talking pennies in the end.

One winter I bought a Moncler jacket for £1000. My friends thought I was insane to buy something that expensive. I did it because I know that Moncler makes great quality jackets, the style is timeless and I’m a cold person, so I needed something that made me feel like I was walking around in a sleeping bag without looking like it.

My Moncler jacket is a proper wardrobe hero. I have worn it every darn winter since 2012 (that is 7 years!) and it still looks like new. I love it just as much now as I did when I bought it and it’s by far one of the less expensive items in my wardrobe PPW wise.

You know those items in your closet that whenever everything else fails, you know you can count on? Those are your wardrobe heroes.

It’s hard to decide what a wardrobe hero is to anyone but yourself.

But looking at my wardrobe and what I actually use my criteria for a wardrobe hero is;

1. It has to be a high-quality item.

If I like something I will use it a lot and that does mean it will be washed often. I can’t have clothes that fall apart after a few wears or lose its shape or color in the wash. This is why I have very few true wardrobe heroes from the high street.

2. It has to fit me perfectly.

The only way to feel great in an outfit is to know that not only am I comfortable, but I also look great too. I have an awesome tailor and I use his services often. It might seem like a waste to buy something and then spend more to have it tailored, but it all comes down to the end PPW. 

3. It has to be versatile. 

If I can only style it one way or wear it on rare occasions, then it might still be a great piece of clothing. But it’s not a hero.

4. It has to be timeless.

A true wardrobe hero is an item you use for 5 years or more. This, of course, doesn’t apply if you are pregnant or by any other reason can’t wear them. It’s more about wanting and having the option to wear them for that long. Sure, white t-shirts probably won’t last more than a couple of years. But if you find your true hero, you can hopefully buy exactly the same style again (or get two in one go).

If you get a trend-led piece of clothing, you can, if you are lucky, get about 2 years of wear out of them. This is why it’s incredibly rare for a trend purchase to be a wardrobe hero. 

5. It has to be 100% me.

Sometimes we get a little bit too inspired by other people and try to take on their style. It’s fun for a little bit, but it will never truly feel like we are 100% ourselves. This is why I try to keep my style separate from everything I see on my friends, fellow influencers and in Vogue. We all look and feel good in different clothes. The only way for an item to be 100% me is if I have picked it without any illusions of becoming someone else. 

I’m really happy to say that I have quite a few wardrobe heroes these days.

One fairly new addition that I have high hopes for is this dress by Ghost London (gifted). It ticks a lot of my boxes on quality, fit, versatility, timelessness and my personal style. I love items with movement, covered buttons, V-shaped necklines, and pastels. In my life, a dress like this will take me from the office to an event and on.

I would be very happy to see myself still loving and using this dress in 5 years time. Can you remember to check-in with me in 2024?

You can find my ghost dress in a color that suits you here (affiliate links);

 

How I learnt how to meditate in 10 easy steps

Are you not the meditating kind of person? Neither was I. But I had to do it, to stay healthy and I used these 10 simple steps to learn how to meditate.

If you would have asked me a few years ago if I meditated, I would probably have laughed.

I have always been a slightly neurotic, high-energy, fast-talking, fast-walking and fast-acting person. I always feel like I can do better, achieve more and do it all faster.

The idea of sitting still, doing nothing and above all thinking nothing felt like a massive waste. Why do nothing when I could be doing something right?

Wrong.

I ended up spending 5 days in the hospital with a nasty stomach ulcer. Only then did I realize that maybe I was taking on a little bit too much and going a tad bit too quick.

What broke me was our wedding in Zimbabwe. We had a 75 people guest list who we also invited to travel the country with us for 2 weeks. Not only was I a bride planning my big day, but I also had to do it remotely in a country with no resources, no stability and no idea of what to expect. On top of this, I became some kind of travel agent planning 40+ peoples flights, hotels, houseboats, lion walks, gorge swings, safaris… and any other minute detail of their trip.

Looking back it was bloody mental. And a great big wakeup call. If I didn’t teach myself to be still now and then my body and mind would break. So I decided that I had to teach myself how to meditate.

In the beginning, I failed miserably at being still. My nose would itch, I would keep checking the time, start thinking about what to have for dinner, etc. I lasted a couple of minutes max. I felt more stressed than before.

But then I decided to make meditation more suitable for me. Over 10 weeks I decided to take 10 minutes and do something relaxing. Every week I added a new step. And slowly but surely I began to enjoy myself.

These are the 10 steps I took to teach myself how to meditate.

Week 1 – I would lie down on the floor for 10 minutes and watched tv. Basically, I just showed up for the first 7 days. To set the habit. 

Week 2 – I lit a candle whilst I watched tv on my back on the floor. To make my senses understand it was time to relax. We should never underestimate how our brains are conditioned to sounds, tastes, and scents. 

Week 3 – I added a spike mat to the equation. It gave me even more of an incentive to keep still and made me a bit sleepy from the extra endorphins.

Week 4 – I switched the tv for my phone and browsed mindful and inspirational quotes. To make my self feel gratitude and positivity. 

Week 5 – I switched the phone for an inspirational book. Removing the screen was a gamechanger and my anxiety levels dropped.

Week 6 – I switched the book for an audiobook. This is when I began to close my eyes and find proper stillness. 

Week 7 – I switched the book to headspace (a meditation app). This made me focus on my breathing in a completely different way. 

Week 8 – I tried my first non-speaking meditation program. I listened to music and scanned my body with my mind in detail from top to toe.

Week 9 – I figured out that I didn’t have to empty my mind of thoughts, I just had to pick one and focus only on that subject. And voila I was meditating without even thinking about time passing. 

For me it worked taking 7 days in-between every step. And to be honest I missed a few sessions in the beginning. But as I got more invested, the habit stuck and I still love my quiet time. If you feel like it’s too quick or slow, just change the pace.

So, how about it? Are you ready to teach yourself how to meditate? I promise a bit of true relaxation will change your life for the better. 

Are you not the meditating kind of person? Neither was I. But I had to do it, to stay healthy and I used these 10 simple steps to learn how to meditate.

Photo – Roz Alcazar. Dress by Ida Sjöstedt. (Gifted)