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Shop The Trend: Straw Bags

Wicker Raffia Bags 3

I have been blogging for a long time now and I’ve noticed some changes over that period. One change that I am becoming more aware of than ever before is how many clothes people are buying. Everyone seems to have the latest jumpsuit from New Look, the perfect Topshop Co-ord and an amazing piece from Weekday. I’m guilty of it myself, regularly browsing the new in section of ASOS and the other day I noticed that Nasty Gal is now one of my most visited websites on my phone – there’s a little link as soon as I open my browser. Which is not healthy for my bank balance, I have to say one thing which makes me feel slightly better is that I am more of a browser than a buyer.

I’m not convinced that this is limited to bloggers either really, it seems a regular conversation between girls is based around a new purchase. I spoke to someone recently that used to work at Missguided and they had a crazy number of new designs that had to be completed weekly for just the tops section, which was truly depressing.

Wicker Raffia Bags 2
Back when I started blogging and for quite a few years into my blogging journey I would read blogs full of girls styling the same pieces and writing about some amazing charity shop bargains. It was amazing to see some of the car boot hauls and DIYs girls were coming up with to keep up with trends at an affordable price. I mean the Confetti Crowd are still rocking vintage as are a fair few girls and those are some of my favourite blogs to read.

I do like a new in piece, I did a New In at Topshop haul a little while back but I also did a SS18 trend look book using pieces I’ve had in my wardrobe for years. One of my favourite co-ords is about 5 years old, it comes out every summer. I guess the depressing fact for some bloggers on Instagram is that they aren’t going to be able to leave a link or tag a brand if their tee was from their local charity shop or if its 3 years old.

The long and waffly point I’m trying to get at is that you don’t need new in pieces to keep up with the trends. Lilac has been coming back practically every other summer, I know this as I’ve regularly caved and purchased a piece despite not really liking lilac all that much – most of them I sold on eBay recently. The tailored suit for females comes back every year with a different name. ‘boy meets girl’ ‘boyish charm’ whatever you call it, if you invest in a good blazer and short combo its likely to be on trend next summer too.

Wicker Raffia Bags 1

I fell in love with some of the straw bags that have been doing the rounds over the last 6 months or so (probably longer, I may be late to the party) but I didn’t fancy spending £35 on a bag I might not use that much so I didn’t cave and visit Zara. Instead I admired from afar until I found 2 charity shop goodies. This boxy little bag was $16 from a shop in Canada which is only £9.  And this little rucksack, which looks handmade with some rope and some curtain hooks (DIY inspired anyone?) was a charity shop find which was just £4!

In keeping with some bargain hunting, if you aren’t a charity shop wanderer – eBay is your friend. Search ‘Raffia Bag’ on eBay and you will find some bargains in the listings. There are some Buy It Now bags which I have listed below (they are affiliate links but if you buy one I reckon I'll get about 6p so I’m not going to be rolling in it)

Chelsea Jade


Boring Slogan Dress by Tallulah's Threads

Tallulah Thread Boring Dress
Tallulah Thread Boring Dress

Tallulah Thread Boring Dress
Shoes - Stradivarius
Tallulah Thread Boring Dress
Tallulah Thread Boring Dress

Can we take a moment to appreciate two amazing things in these photos:

1) The Rainbow Crosswalks in Vancouver
2) This amazing boring slogan dress

As soon as I came across this rainbow road I knew I had to take a snap there! I recently purchased this dress after seeing it on the Talluah's Thread instagram page and decided to pair the two. Despite getting up early to take photos around 9am the roads were still quite busy so I didn't manage to get as many snaps on the colourful floor as I would have liked. As I was on holiday and Zhi was taking the photos I thought I'd make use of the other colourful floor on the path behind.

The dress is handmade which I love, it is from UK Brand Tallulah's Threads which you can find on their website, ASOS marketplace, SilkFred and Spoiled Brat. The dress is super soft and the pastel colours are perfect for the warmer weather we have been enjoying. If you've followed me for a little while then you'll know I love a good smock dress, so I now have my eye on their glitter star dress, it is so cute!

If you missed it you can see another outfit that I wore while exploring Vancouver in my last post on layering a vintage dress.

Chelsea Jade


Beauty Haul - Fragrance Direct

Lottie nail varnish

I made an order of Fragrance direct about a month ago and thought I would share some of my thoughts. Firstly on the website, it is very easy to navigate the website whether it’s searching via product or brand there are tonnes of products at discounted prices. The main attraction for me on this occasion (I’ve made several orders before) was the NYX discounts, I really wanted to try some more of their products but I have to say with total honesty, when it comes to cosmetics, I am tight. I don’t know if I’ll every buy a luxury branded cosmetic, how can you spend so much and not know if you’ll get along with the product!?

NYX Hydra touch foundation

The NYX Hyrda touch foundation has absolutely incredible coverage and when I first put it on I sent photos to my mum and sister, like I'VE BEEN PHOTOSHOPPED IN REAL LIFE. But alas it did not last and kind of rubbed off in patches. I’ve tried it several times and this product is really not for me. Or my face, I should say because I have been using this product fairly regularly on my chest when I have worn something more low cut, just to blend into my face colour and even out my skin tone. So it has been mildly helpful but nothing revolutionary – particularly not for the face.

Max Factor Lasting Performance Foundation

This Max Factor foundation is one of my all-time favourites, I’ve used it for years but the light shade that I use is actually only okay for my skin in the summer time which it’s a touch more tanned. I did however recently find that there is a shade (which may be new) which looked lighter so that will be next on my wish list. This foundation blends well, it doesn’t make me have dry patches and it doesn’t rub off in places. It is buildable and as an extra point, my mum adores this foundation.

NYX velvet matte and turn it up lipstick

NYX lipsticks are wonderful, I’ve used quite a few before and loved them. The velvet matte ones last so so long even when I was drinking I hardly had to reapply through the night. The turn up lipstick was just another addition to my basket as I wanted another red lipstick after liking the red lip colour in my valentines post.
I had a few other bits and bobs that I ordered like the Lottie nail varnishes and a few clay masks but these are pretty basic products that just do the job.

Have you ordered from Fragrance direct before? They have some right bargains, my mum even made an order recently after seeing my haul.

Chelsea Jade


Blogging Advice from the Blogger Brand Workshop

bloggerbrandworkshop oneroofsocial 4

Recently I attended an event which was so helpful in terms of blogging. It was a #bloggerbrandworkshop by Joe Blogs, One Roof Social and Currys PC World, with Anna Hart from South Molton Style speaking for the main portion of the event.

I arrived a little unsure of what to expect as I was attending alone and I’m a little awkward. But the people that worked the event were very friendly and so were the girls I ended up sitting with on my table. The hosts were wonderful and kept my prosecco topped up, you dolls.

Enough waffle Chels, let’s get to the point. The talk was so helpful, and there was a little booklet provided that had somethings I wanted to share with you. These bits of advice are all from the lovely Anna so I take no credit other than picking out the key points for you blogger babes.

bloggerbrandworkshop oneroofsocial 1
Did you know that the UK accounts for 7% of the world’s influencers while the US holds 30%?

There are so many posts out there offering advice about blogging and one of the main points is your brand, your niche and I mean that is important but reading through so many different articles can be time consuming. The two main points I took away from this part of the talk were these two:

  1. Think of your blog content and compare it to different types of publication. Think about other bloggers you know, this whole blogosphere and imagine it as a newspaper stand (the fancy kind with loads of fashion mags)
    There are quarterlies, beautifully curated pieces that are the perfect mag for your flat lay but how much does it actually influence you to purchase. Then think about weekly magazines and the immediate influence they can have.  Use this to help think about what your target audience is and what impact you want to have. Of course blogs aren’t magazines but it was helpful to think of my blog as something printed and who I’d want to be buying it.
  2. Unique Selling Point (USP) being the second, this should be linked to why you started your blog and what you enjoy – not what you think will do well as you’ll end up getting lost. The activity we were asked to do really helped. We had to describe our brand, our USP with the person next to us and they had to think of brands that they thought we’d love to work with. Listening to what other people thought I was going for based on my explanation and what I thought my unique selling point was. Try it with someone you know that maybe doesn’t read your blog or try it out on a blogger next time you meet at an event.
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You must use Google Analytics, if you don’t have it, get it now. Use YouTube to help you understand your analytics, there are tonnes of tutorials. Then when you have the data, use it to your advantage. When talking to brands, don’t tell them you have 10,000 followers. Instead tell them that 80% of your readers are based in the UK, tell them the age. If you use affiliate schemes already, like RewardStyle, use that data too. You could contact a brand you have made money from through affiliate links because you are already making sales for them, tell them the conversion and why you’d love to work with them in a different capacity. Have a media kit with clear stats available and send along with an email anyway to be helpful.

Now to very briefly talk SEO – there were 3 main points Anna had about SEO:

  1. Always name your image files (not IMG_01 but “high waist floral trousers”)
  2. Title your content logically (clearly relating to the content of the post)
  3. Link Correctly  (Make your anchor text relevant)
A quick google of these key points will lead you to lots of helpful websites on SEO :) I would highly recommend signing up to the One Roof Social emails to keep up to date with their blog content!

The little booklet we were given had a few helpful websites if you’ve not heard of them, check them out.
Planoly,   // Hootsuite   //  Canva   //   Picmonkey.

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We were also spoken to by Curry PCWorld and we were shown some of the updates to Microsoft products. So you will all be familiar with PowerPoint but they have gone all fancy and now have these amazing templates designed by Microsoft. It's smart and takes in the number of images on a page and will sort it into a design for you, and you can play around adding and removing images or changing designs.I think you could use it to design one single page and use it for a business card or a graphic on your media kit for sure!

The other part that I found interesting is that they have researcher now, which means you can search for a webpage, quote it and the document adds a reference for you in an appendix. Imagine having that while at University!! It would have saved me hours.

Finally the Ink feature which allows you to draw on documents is perfect because you can actually replay the drawing. It can be sent to someone and when they press replay they can see what you drew on the document in the correct order. It would be helpful for so many different work places.
They are using subtle artificial intelligence for some of these new features so you techy people check it out! You can also find some useful articles on the Tech Talk blog by Currys PC World which has different sections on topics like the latest laptops and tablet, software and apps, windows 10 etc for you to browse. 



I hope you have found some of the things I’ve shared helpful! If you have any questions feel free to message me and I can try to elaborate. In the meantime, check out One Roof Social for more advice from Anna.

Finally a thank you to Kim and the Greenlight team for letting me use photos taken at the event as I didn’t take my camera with me on this occasion.

Chelsea Jade