Ah yes, if you have been reading this blog for a while you must know that spring and summer are my most dreaded seasons when it comes to wardrobe planning. However, last year I think I did a good job in regards to planning and purchasing new clothes. My list consisted of three potential purchases but I only ended up with two; a black camisole and a pair of high-waisted white trousers. The latter made me realise that I don’t have to wear jeans all summer, solely out of habit, and that they’re a great alternative for skirts and dresses which I rarely wear.

I did succumb to fast fashion once again (will I ever learn?). I’ve come to realise that I very much prefer to invest in clothes and accessories that I can wear all year round instead of just one season. So summery trousers are not something I’m willing to spend a lot of money on. But, as always, they do need to meet all of my requirements; natural fabrics, machine washable, high-waisted for the illusion of longer legs and preferable wide-legged. We all have our problem areas (even if they’re only visible to ourselves) and mine are my thighs or better said, those darn saddlebags. So I try not to emphasise them when I wear something tucked into my trousers. Straight or wide trousers are my best option.

I tried several options such as these and these but I finally fell for the green trousers below. I have to admit though, I left the tags on because they’re a bit trendy and out there for me personally (you can see me wearing them here) and we have only been blessed with two warm days so far. But if I do keep them, I have my summer wardrobe sorted. I have compiled a few collages of how I would wear them with garments and accessories that I already own. What do you think? Yay or nay?


From left to right, top to bottom: Byredo Black Saffron perfume (€110) , H&M trousers (€50), Straw hat (similar here), black loafers (similar here), Samsoe & Samsoe camisole (old)

From left to right, top to bottom: Yoisho straw bag (€30), H&M trousers (€50), Escentric Molecules, Molecule 01 perfume (€90), &Other Stories sandals (sold out), Adam Lippes t-shirt (€100)

an ethical and sustainable gift guide

This blog is by no means an example on how to lead a sustainable lifestyle. While I do spend a good amount of time reading about ethical brands and slow fashion and try to invest in quality items that will last a long time, I unfortunately, on occassion, still give in to fast fashion and things which may not be produced under the best circumstances. That said, I thought it would be a nice idea to challenge myself to come up with a gift guide that is slightly different from most other gift guides that are currently taking over the blogosphere. All products are cruelty free, sustainable, ethically produced or focus on slow fashion.

  1. Everlane continues to be one of my favourite brands. I bought one of their cashmere turtlenecks last year and am very happy with the quality. Too bad that the shipping and taxes are so high. But if you don’t mind or live in the US, this leather wallet would make a great gift option.
  2. A collaboration between two great brands; Aesop and A.P.C, this fabric wash is specifically designed for hand washing delicate garments. Formulated by Aesop chemists, it contains extracts of Pettigrain, Lemon and Cedarwood. The latter a great natural moth repellant. For any wool or cashmere items that don’t need immediate cleaning but you would like to keep fresh between washes, check The Laundress wool and cashmere spray. Made with natural ingredients, non-toxic and fully biodegradable.
  3. The Merchant & Mills Rapid Repair kit contains everything you need for the occasional fashion emergency. There’s no need to throw something away just because you lost a button of a coat or tore a small hole in a knitted sweater.
  4. I wrote about this particular lipstick before. For all of you Dutch people who love MAC’s Ruby Woo but are looking for a cruelty free alternative, make sure you try HEMA’s Longer Lasting lipstick in 06. It’s absolutely spot on and less drying than the ‘original’.
  5. The kiss stud earrings by jewelry line Winden are designed and handmade in New York City. The materials used are almost exclusively manufactured in the USA, the majority of which are recycled.
  6. This palm leaf print bikini by Danish brand Underprotection is made from eco-friendly material, certified by the Fair Wear Foundation. All of their styles are ethically produced in New Delhi, India, in collaboration with a small local factory.
  7. Kiko’s bright lift serum is one of my current favourite skincare products. It gives your face an instant glow. Paraben free and not tested on animals.
  8. In The Kinfolk Home: Interiors for slow living, Kinfolk founder Nathan Williams showcases how embracing that same ethos—of slowing down, simplifying your life, and cultivating community—allows you to create a more considered, beautiful, and intimate living space.
feb-mar-apr-shoppingreflections

I know, I know, in a previous post I mentioned how I wanted to do a monthly update on my shopping habits but unfortunately life got in the way. Which isn’t so bad really because that left me little time to do some actual (online) shopping. So for this one I’m keeping it short and simple. These past three months I only bought two things; a new pair of jeans and a reusable shopping bag. Not bad right?

I could have done better in the jeans department though because I ended up buying a new pair from Topshop. I did some research on more conscious, environmental friendly brands but I haven’t been able to find what I’m looking for just yet. I’m super short so most jeans are much too long for me and these Jamie jeans are an excellent fit. They hit just above the ankle. I do feel that they sag a little after a couple of wears but I think I also lost a bit of weight. Let’s just go with the latter, just to cheer me up on this gloomy day.

Next up my Susan Bijl reusable shopping bag. Since the start of this year stores in the Netherlands can no longer hand out free shopping bags. A great initiative obviously and also a great excuse to buy another bag as I don’t fancy carrying around designer bags with vegetables and shower gel. When you live or work in Rotterdam it’s hard not to be familiar with The New Shoppingbag and with good reason. It’s  made of 100%  super strong ripstop nylon used for manufacturing kites, it’s water repellent and folds up really small. And it’s always nice to support a ‘local’ designer.

So that’s it after three months. It might seem as though I’m really happy with my wardrobe and I don’t need anything right now but I will definitely have to start looking around for summer clothing soon. Mostly tops as I wear them all year round (underneath sweaters and cardigans) and some can no longer be seen in broad daylight.

How did you do the past couple of months boo boo, shopping-wise?

january shopping reflections

This year started off pretty well with four new purchases. Yikes! Two items were bought on sale though and the other two are beauty related acquisitions which I normally don’t list, but I really like Xin‘s monthly reflections posts and thought I would give it a go myself this year. I usually travel to Antwerp in Belgium twice a year to scour the sales racks for a good five minutes and then move on to the new collections because I can no longer stand the heat, the mess and the crowd. But every now and then I come across a marked down gem such as the Massimo Dutti ankle boots. I had my eyes on them for months but ultimately decided I didn’t need them until I ran into them with a 30% discount and I could no longer resist. I bought a pair of similar leather ankle boots at Zara a few years ago but they’re so uncomfortable that I never wear them. I’ll probably sell them or donate them to charity.

I also managed to score another scarf on sale, this time the A.P.C. wool scarf. It’s a bit larger than the Acne Studios Canada scarf (see my review here) but otherwise pretty much the same. I suppose time will tell if it holds up just as well. I clearly didn’t need another scarf but it’s a nice change from the grey one that I have been wearing non-stop for years now.

january shopping reflections

The next two things were on my beauty wish list for a while. I don’t wear a lot of makeup except for a little mascara and lipstick but I really wanted a simple all-in-one travel sized palette. After extensive research and endlessly deliberating between Urban Decay’s Naked on the run palette, Bobbi Brown’s Deluxe eye and cheek palette and Laura Mercier’s Glam to go travel case (seriously, I spent a good hour reading reviews because those palettes are so darn expensive and I couldn’t make up my mind) I decided to go with Urban Decay’s Naked on the run palette. It has everything you need for a simple day and/or evening look and it’s a great deal. If you were to buy every product separately, it would be twice the price of the entire palette. So far though, I’ve only used to eye pencil, mascara and lipgloss because I still need to get an eyeshadow brush. That’s the only downside, it doesn’t come with brushes.

And last but not least, the infamous Nuxe Rêve de Miel Ultra-nourishing lip balm. My lips tend to get extremely dry and chapped during winter and I’ve tried so many lip balms over the years but this one does the trick. The texture feels a bit strange, gritty almost but it goes on very smooth and stays put for several hours. It’s not cheap but I do feel that you get a fair amount of product for its price.

That’s it for January! It’s a bit much, but I usually buy more things at the end or the beginning of a year and a lot less during summer. So for now, I’m not worried about going over my 10 pieces for this year. For a brief moment I thought about mentioning how much I spent in total but I’m not a budgeting blogger that wants to spend as little as possible on clothes, accessories etc. I just really like to carefully plan and review my purchases to make sure that I only buy things that I truly love and to avoid any shopping mistakes.