Ascot Ladies Day 2013

It’s my much-delayed report on Ladies’ Day at Ascot 2013! I had a blast as usual – and we even won big in one race when we bet on the Queen’s horse to win, and also scooped the second and third place runners too – but somehow, the shine is wearing off of this event for me. Maybe it’s the fact that I had my foot crushed by a rather large middle-aged lady who was completely smashed out of her mind during the Bandstand Singalong (and it still hurts now, two months later) or maybe it’s the fact that the dress code standards have slipped again, but there’s just something about Ascot Ladies’ Day that is wearing a little thin on me now. But, this post is to concentrate on the positive!

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The theme this year was floral (my friends and I try to match – last year’s theme was obvious and awesome at the same time!), so I spent a lot of time hunting out the perfect floral dress. It had to be flared and with a ’50s style vest-shaped top. I found the perfect dress in French Connection’s Maggie Lou. However, I had a massive crisis of confidence when my usual dress size didn’t fit me, which prompted me to go on an epic, short-term weight loss plan, which I’m pleased to say was successful. I am certainly not the size I’d like to be, but I did fit into a size 10 again!

Once I found my perfect dress, I needed a hat or fascinator to go with it. I had always planned to get something made, so I commissioned the fabulous Marissa Fleur from Etsy to create a bespoke headpiece based on the colours of the dress.

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Floral Headpiece, commissioned from Marissa Fleur via Etsy / Disc Stud Earrings with Aqua Chalcedony Stones, Azuni / Maggie Lou Dress, French Connection / Wrap, Monsoon / Natalie Clutch, L.K. Bennett / Black Patent Maddox Wedges, L.K. Bennett

Here’s what the headpiece looks like flattened out, and below is the finished product on a headband, which is how I wore it on the day!

We booked afternoon tea at the event and wound up being incredibly late thanks to some atrocious traffic on the way. I think we were stuck for at least an hour and a half. It wasn’t the best of ways to begin, I have to say, although the tea was lovely enough to make it worth the wait:

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At first I was slightly disappointed, as I thought the pork pie, tarts and fondant fancies were shop-bought, but upon thorough investigation, they seemed to have been made by hand – and they were certainly tastier than their supermarket counterparts!

The tearooms were a bit corporate feeling, but the mismatched china gave it a cool look – although, obviously, it’s much cheaper to fill a tearoom with mismatched china sets! At our table there was even a set that matched my colour scheme!

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The afternoon tea cost £24pp and was honestly worth it for not having to go through the drama of fighting for a table at one of the kiosks or in the Bandstand restaurant. The food was very decent, and there was certainly enough! I think we were stuffed by the end! And anywhere with tea on tap is fine with me, of course.

For dinner, we went to Heston’s Hind’s Head in Bray again, but I think I’ll save that for another post. In the meantime, here are a few more pictures of the day…

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Next year, I think I’m going to try out a few different race meets. I’m thinking Epsom and Goodwood for 2014!

Birthday sundae outfit

On Monday last week my husband’s lovely co-workers organised a surprise trip for him to go to a local ice-cream parlour. I, of course, was a major co-conspirator, so I had to pop along as well! Here’s my outfit!

UntitledSunglasses, French Connection / orange, blue, white and silver textured jacket, Next / orange geo top, Next / jeans, Gap / red satchel, Accessorize / cat shoes, eBay

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If I’ve only learnt one thing recently fashion-wise, it’s the importance of a range of cute blazers when it comes to pepping up an outfit. I love the colours in this, and multi-coloured items make it so easy to match accessories, etc. I got this in the sale at Next, after having stalked it at full price for some time – and it was the last one left at half price. Bargain!

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They also match these orange-red cat flats I bought from eBay, which are sadly starting to show their wear, but I still love them. When I bought them, I had no idea they were copies of the Charlotte Olympia Kitty flats, but in all honesty I prefer the heel height on mine – which is to say, completely flat. Of course, if I win the lottery I will purchase the originals immediately! Also, please excuse the scratches on my foot – I was attacked by a bush on my parents’ driveway recently! At least it’s not as noticeable as what’s happened to my hand…

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Nope, no idea why I have cuts all over it, other than I was doing *a lot* of party prep and being incredibly careless. Good job I’m not a hand model! But ignore the cuts, check out the cute Dog Zodiac bracelet my husband bought me from Mulberry in the sale!

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Dogs are my favourite animal, and I was born in the year of the dog, so of course, I had to have this… It was fate! And, it came in its own dustbag, gift box and lovely Mulberry bag, too – all for the bargain price of £20!

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I’ve been wearing it every day since – I usually hate bracelets and watches because of the constant feeling of something being on my wrist, or slipping around, but this is so delicate you hardly know it’s there.

Pride Parade and Mulberry

At the weekend, my husband and I went to London to see the finale of Viva Forever. So sad the show is closing because I thought it was a decent musical with some great highlights, but… I guess the press just wasn’t behind it. Bof.

Here’s my outfit for the day:

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Zipper jacket, Zara / scarf, eBay / sunglasses, French Connection / mouse earrings, Hobbs / red satchel, Accessorize / jeans, Gap / leopard Indias with red trim, French Sole (via ASOS)

These shoes were a massive bargain, actually – somehow they ended up in the sale at ASOS for £67. They’d been in my saved list for ages so when I saw the price drop I ordered them right off. They’re ponyhair and I adore them – and they are surprisingly versatile even though at first glance they seem very outrageous. They’re also not at all my usual style – and in fact, a year ago I would have balked at anything animal print as being incredibly tacky – but hey… Things change!

Coincidentally, our trip was on the same day as the Pride Parade, so we stopped to watch it on Regents Street. It was awesome to be part of such an amazing demonstration, underneath the banners for the 60th anniversary of QEII’s coronation. How things have changed!

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I also met this handsome chap, who totally knew he was hot stuff…

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I LOVE Chihuahuas – my nan and mum used to breed them when I was little, so I spent my childhood surrounded by the critters. I’ll always have a soft spot for them.

By the end of the parade – which took about an hour and a half to filter past – I was plastered in stickers. It was great to be there to support the event, and I’m really glad we stopped to soak in the atmosphere.

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Afterwards, I dragged my husband to Mulberry’s new flagship store on New Bond Street, to check out the sales.
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I’m sure I’m not the only girl who lusts after a Mulberry to hang on my arm…

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There were certainly plenty of goodies to choose from!

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The design of the store was beautiful – of course, that was my official reason for visiting… Harumph…

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When I came out, I was sure to send a photo to my fellow Mulberry-loving friend…

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What was inside the bag, I hear you ask… It was leather protecting spray! Yes, those sweet shop assistants wrapped it up in one of their gorgeous bags for me. So, wrapped up in the giddy thrill and excitement, I forced my poor husband to purchase me a ‘gift’ from the sale – a Dog Zodiac bracelet, reduced from £40 to £20. I love it, I’ll post a picture later…

Next post will be all about our visit to Hawksmoor Air Street.