Sunday, 23 October 2011

35 Years of Warehouse + Save 25% Off Your Online Order!

My Warehouse Wish List
Metal Bow Narrow Alice Band
Peter Pan Jumper
Silk Bird Print Dress 
Diamond Oversize Bag
Triple Lock Purse

Warehouse appeared on the British highstreet 35 years ago when it opened its first store in London in 1976 with the aim of making fashion accessible to all. I’ve always found Warehouse great for quality fashion staples as well as the occasional stand-out piece. A few years ago a large portion of my wardrobe came from them, however I’ve found recently their sizing has grown increasingly erratic and the stores can be a little drab and uninspiring.

I was tempted back to Warehouse when I saw a 25% off promotion advertised in the November edition of Elle magazine. The Warehouse website is well laid out with clothes grouped into clearly defined categories as well as by trend and occasion. True to form their basics were great –just as simple and chic as I remembered. I was also really impressed by the way they’ve updated their collections with a lot of more adventurous fashion pieces. The website showcased an absolutely stunning range of dresses from casual day dresses to elegant evening dresses to fun party dresses -perfect for the festive season!

Soon I had compiled a lengthy wish list of items. I narrowed it down to a few pieces and added them to my basket. I was disappointed that half way through the checkout I was told several of them weren’t available and were removed from the order. Because I spent over £75 I qualified for free next day delivery (normally £4.99), so I had my parcel before lunch time the very next day- an unexpected bonus! Everything was really well packaged, either neatly folded in individual bags or delivered hanging with a plastic cover. I was impressed that even the belt buckle on a skirt I ordered had been carefully wrapped in tissue paper.  

The appearance and quality of the two dresses and skirt I ordered was excellent, fabrics felt luxurious and hung beautifully and little finishing touches like brass buttons or exposed zips were lovely, but once again inconsistent sizing let the clothes down. One dress, a stunning pale pink lace shift –very Jackie O!- fit snuggly, yet the silk bird print dress I had ordered in the same size totally hung off me, leaving me unsure whether to risk alterations or simply return, a shame as I absolutely loved everything I ordered.

If you want to try Warehouse out for yourself use the promotional code BIRTHDAY3 online at  to receive 25% off until 13th November 2011. To claim the discount in store look for the voucher in the November issue of Elle magazine.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Affordable Art: Wall Canvases

Next 'Paris' Photo Canvas

There’s no better way to introduce personality into your interior spaces than by adding some amazing art. While original pieces can be incredibly expensive running into hundreds or even thousands of pounds, the growing popularity of wall canvases mean great artwork is now accessible to everyone. A modern alternative to traditional framed pictures, wall canvases usually feature a print of an original painting, photograph or abstract design printed onto canvas and stretched over a lightweight wooden framework- not a gilt frame in sight. I love how canvases can completely transform a room, they can complement and harmonise with your décor or stand out and make a bold statement, and best of all they can be bought from as little as £8 on the highstreet. Next, Matalan and TK Maxx all do a great selection of reasonably priced canvases so you can afford to experiment.

I picked up the gorgeous ‘Paris’ modified photo canvas above at a Next Clearance outlet (you can find a complete list of all the Clearance outlets in the UK here) a few days ago for the bargain price of £10. It adds a pop of colour to a plain wall and the golden beige tones –amazingly for an impulse purchase!- tie in perfectly with the rest of the décor. By hanging it directly above the bed it draws attention to it and creates a real focal point in the room. I’ve chosen some of my favourite canvases available in stores now below:

Next 'Stolen Kiss' Canvas £60

I absolutely adore this hand finished canvas from Next. On its own or in a horizontal grouping of three or four similar prints, this would lend a grown up sophistication to any room. It looks great against a plain oatmeal coloured background. Buy it here.

Matalan 'London Bus' Canvas £8

This grey scale/colour photo of a London bus has a real 1960s/70s vibe to it that is really fun, Hang it by itself or with other retro prints on a wall in a bold clashing colour for an instant talking point. Buy it here for only £8.

Next 'Aloe Vera' Glitter Printed Canvas £50

I love this stunning Aloe vera print from Next. It would make an elegant focal point in a bedroom. Hanging it on a wall painted in a soft grey from the same colour pallet looks really expensive and chic. Available here.

Matalan 'Ocean Horizon' Canvas £8

It's relaxing just looking at this gorgeous Ocean Horizon seascape! It makes me think of New England beach huts and days by the seaside. It would tie in perfectly with a nautical style scheme and soft blue or white walls. Click here to buy.

Matalan 'Vintage Flower' Canvases £8 each

This Vintage Flower print from Matalan looks so girly and feminine. It would be perfect in a bedroom or a relaxing lounge against a pretty pastel backdrop like this soft lilac which echoes the deeper purple in the photo. The symmetrical pairing gives it a really neat, prim feel. Available here. 

Thanks for reading, hope I've inspired you to try out some wall art!
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