Bag ‘n’ Shoes: French Sole Quilted Red Henrietta Flats and Accessorize Alessandra Satchel

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The Great French Sole Factory Shop Haul continues – this time, with the incredibly festive looking pair of red Henriettas with white trim! The main body of these flats are quilted, but the toe is nubuck, which makes them look really pretty, but is a bit of a nightmare if you’re going anywhere that’s a bit damp!

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However, there’s no denying that white and red seem made for Christmas (thanks, Coca Cola!). And, I paired it with one of my favourite bags, my red Alessandra satchel from Accessorize, which my friend Lisa bought me for my 30th birthday. You can purchase similar bags from Accessorize here: they’re one of my favourite companies!

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Attached to it is a little Parazul charm I bought on holiday in the Caribbean. Parazul are one of those companies you see everywhere on a cruise, but at the time there was no way I could drop $100s on a bag, so I bought myself a little charm instead. On the shuttle back to the ship, one of the crew started cooing over my shopping bag, but his face completely dropped when I showed him what I’d actually bought! Still, I like it! And, as well as being a reminder of my holiday, it’s also a nod to my family’s shipbuilding heritage too!

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And, finally, my nail varnish is Goldeneye by OPI – in my opinion, the best bright gold varnish for the Christmas season. Perfect if you want to get into the holiday spirit!

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Living in the ’80s!

If there’s one thing I’m famous for amongst my friends, it’s wanting to dress up at the drop of a hat, and planning elaborate parties in order to justify some ridiculous outfit I’ve dreamed up. So I thought I’d share these photos from our ’80s party last year, which we organised as part of the joint 30th birthday celebration between me and my friends, who were all born within a couple of months of each other. What better way to celebrate a landmark birthday than with a throwback party to the decade when you were born?!

Of course, Ray-bans were the big thing during the ’80s (have they ever really gone out of fashion since?!), so the first job was grabbing a pair of replicas from eBay.

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Next, comes the big hair…

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Polka dots and bright accessories:

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I was channeling a pre-blonde Madonna here, of course…

I actually had two outfits for the weekend, but first was the small matter of hair and makeup:

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I thought I’d go subtle for the first day, so as not to scare people too badly…

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This is an authentic ’80s jumpsuit, complete with amazing power shoulder pads. The honest truth is I loved wearing this – it was comfy as heck and I thought it looked fantastic. Sadly, I don’t think the world is ready for a real ’80s revival just yet… I also bought these great electric blue snakeskin heels from New Look to complete the outfit. Unfortunately, at times, there was something slightly Michael Jackson-ish about my appearance:

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Day two was when I unleashed the full force of Madonna:

IMG_2377The Material Girl was in full swing!

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My husband wore a tracksuit – he loves it so much he’s worn it multiple times since then, because as all children of the ’80s, he feels the lure of the tracksuit like a Siren’s call.

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I had on a tutu, but you can only really see it in this incredibly unflattering side view of me singing along to Blondie:

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But wait! What about the catering? Well, of course, that was a major aspect of the fun! Where would an ’80s party be without a trifle?

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And a pineapple and cheese hedgehog?

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And a really awful photo of a Viennetta?!

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(When I was a kid, you knew it was a serious and important landmark event if there was Viennetta on the table!)

There also had to be quiche and vol au vents:

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And pink wafers, savoury mini eggs, and party rings!

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And, because why not, jello shots in the shape of lemon wedges!

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Sunday morning could only be cartoons and Pop Tarts time!

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It was great fun to relive our childhood days from a slightly different perspective, but I have to say my Pop Tart sugar rush was pretty intense…! I still can’t decide which ’80s outfit I liked the best, but it was definitely fun to research them and put them together. The first time round for me, the ’80s were all knee high socks, flowery skirts, and matching cardigans!