Friday, 21 November 2014

Space Witch

After a small hiatus which I can only put down to feeling totally uninspired and working on various other things, Belly is back, back again. And this time, she's got a somewhat unsuitable choice of clothing for the current weather climate (don't worry, the odd third person narrative isn't going to continue past this parenthesis). Part of why I haven't done an outfit post for a while is because I've been feeling a little disconnected from the way I look. I was pretty bored of it, to be honest. I'd put on the first thing I could find for work and would find myself looking in the mirror at my clothes and my hair and going...'meh'. It's a bit of a departure from my last post championing self love, but it wasn't so much self hate but self...indifference. I always find in those situations that getting a bit dressed up helps, oh, and also, a bit of impromptu hair dying, as you might have noticed!


Top and skirt - Boohoo (sold out)
Jacket - Unif via Depop
Bag - Choies
Shoes - Nike via Asos (sold out)

You know when you're not feeling so great about yourself? Wear your favourite things. This Unif I Dye Moto jacket and these (slightly scruffy) Nike trainers are currently my favourite things. Alongside it I've got my Boohoo neon top and skirt co ord. I made a Boohoo order recently predominantly of 'basics' such as pencil skirts and black dresses, but this one particularly stands out for obvious reasons, not to mention managing to make me look mega curvy (or maybe that's down to pizza and donuts)?

And we come back to the hair, which is the first time I've had to update you on it in months! I've certainly been liking my light blonde hair, but naturally I got a little bored after I'd had such a long stint of changing my hair colour almost weekly. This is a pretty subtle change, just a 15 minute coating with a small amount of Bleach's Awkward Peach hair dye. I really like how it's come out, and it helps to soften my facial features (having very white blonde hair can be quite harsh on your skin tone).

Also do you like my brooch? I bought it ages ago from a seller called Cakeeater on Etsy. She's not selling these at the moment but she sold a whole selection of cute brooches with words such as 'loser' and 'cute' on it. It's a perfect mixture of my favourite things, witchcraft and um, sparkly glittery stuff.

Thanks for reading! Belphoebe x Find me elsewhere! Instagram

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Inspiration Hour: Be Nice to Yourself, Okay?

'If you can't love yourself, how the hell are you gonna love somebody else?' RuPaul

In July, I graduated university. This should have been a happy time, I had done better than I could have ever expected to do, after years of telling myself how stupid I was, how inarticulate, consistently assaulting myself over and over again with thoughts that I was never good enough. I saw my parents and how proud they were of me, and it was an extremely overwhelming experience.

The truth was, at this incredibly happy time, that I had never felt more miserable. I had been through an extremely hard time, a mixture of exterior issues and self inflicted hatred, and getting up in the morning, and seeing the day, was a struggle. I had a degree and a job with some wonderful people, yet I was still unhappy. I saw nowhere for my feelings to go, constantly floored by a sense of loss and intense self loathing. I didn't treat myself well, because I didn't want to be myself.  photo 10thaugust3_zps29c4216b.jpg

It got to the point where enough was enough. Something just clicked - that I couldn't go on treating myself like I did, telling myself that I was stupid, useless, socially awkward, ugly, misshapen etc. Frankly, I decided to grab life by the er, balls and do something about it. I understand how hard it is to get out of the slump, believe me, but for me personally, I have to get to a point where I am so low, that my only option is to pull myself out again.

I took steps to look after myself health wise. After a few weeks, I started to feel significantly more motivated, alongside this, I made plans to see friends, to go for coffee with people I hadn't seen for a while, to meet new people. I started to meditate, repeat positive affirmations, write lists of everything I wanted to do in my life. These things all put me on the path to where I am today, which incidentally, is a much better place.

I want to highlight the importance of accepting myself, and even loving myself, in the wider scheme of becoming a happier person. In the past I had always scorned those 'new agey, arty farty, aspirational' schools of thought. As a result, it's made me a cynical person. But in my journey of embracing new things, new ideas, and general happiness, self love has been a big ol' part of it. I just wanted to share a few thoughts with people who look down at their body and hate every bit, with people who look at their art and curse their ineptitude, with people who never feel like they have the confidence to go out and get what they want:

If you tell people that you're terrible, what choice will they have but to believe you?

Again, I'd like to refer to my deeply wise pal Maire and something she once said to me (she gives off some serious Dalai Lama vibes on a regular basis): If you apologise for everything and tell people that you're rubbish, they're going to associate negativity with you, and if they don't know you that well, they might even believe you. You don't have to go round singing your own praises, but giving off an air of confidence, self assertion, and cutting the negativity will attract people to you and attract yourself to um, yourself. For instance, if someone compliments you, instead of going 'nah, I don't agree, I look terrible', thank them, and feel awesome about the fact that somebody thinks you're great.

Reflect on and analyse yourself, but in a good way

This is really just personal preference, but I love writing down my intentions, dreams etc. My student mentor once told me to write down all the positives in my life, and there were a lot. I have really fantastic, supportive close friends, I live in an amazing city, I've had the opportunity to have a brilliant education, I could go on. I'd suggest you go and do that too, alongside writing down everything that you want from yourself and life, and thinking practically about ways to make that happen. Take at least 10 minutes out of every day to reflect on how you felt about yourself that day.

When you've gone and done something great for yourself, reward yourself.

After university finished, I made myself a promise that every day I would do something that scared me. That was particularly important for me, as I realised that I was pretty scared of a whole lot of things. It's important to push yourself, but also to give yourself time to do the things you enjoy. My blogging pal Sarah wrote an amazing listed blog post about all the things you can do to encourage self love, and I'd really encourage you to go and read that. My own personal ones are making music playlists, having baths, and writing blog posts, funnily enough! I also eat a lot of chocolate but let's not talk about that.

When you feel good about yourself, that's when things can get better. 

'I'll be more confident, when I lost weight.' 'I'll ask that person out, when my skin gets better' 'I'll start writing, when I've read 20,000 more books' - we've all said similar things to ourselves, I'm guessing. I always said that one day I would be happy, when things improve. Then I realised that things would start to improve when I took on a more positive demeanour and actually saw the good side to myself, and guess what? They did! The truth is, that you should be enough, not an exterior thing that you want. Things don't necessarily have to change for you to see them in a different light. Stop giving yourself time frames and accept that when you start to properly, truly like yourself, then that's most of the work done for you. Crazy, I know.

I really hope this can be of help to some people in its own rambly, jumbled way. I'd really love to hear more about your own personal experiences of self love or self esteem issues if you're willing to share.

Resources that helped me:
Connor Manning's videos often focus on advice, and he's a really enthusiastic, inspiring guy.
Laila, one of the happiest people I know, wrote a post about perking yourself up.
Mike Falzone is insanely wise and when he tells you home truths, it makes you feel like they've been obvious all along.
Sarah's blog more generally encourages self love and being good to yourself, and it's awesome.
Zoe London has written some really excellent posts on topics of confidence, self love etc. This particular one about 'becoming more positive' really inspired me.
My best friend Lucy made this video about confidence, and she's amazing, so yeah, go watch that.

Thanks for reading! Belphoebe x Find me elsewhere! Instagram

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Fur Coats and Fellow Bloggers

It's a rare joy when I am able to rope someone in to take some proper, scenic London outfit photos for Rags. This Sunday, I was able to have such a joy when I met up with Laila, who after having known each other for ages on the blogosphere has become a firm friend irl. As well as this, I was finally able to meet Jess, who writes the blog Jessthetics (as well as running her own beautiful online shop, including her own crafted clothes as well as selected thrifted pieces, which you all need to go and check out). Alongside wiling away hours chatting about everything from university to camera recommendations in coffee shops (which included basically scheduling Laila's entire blog content calendar for the next few months, so Laila, I'm waiting with bated breath for those inspirational posts), we also scouted out for what Jess referred to as 'blogger streets', which if you don't know, is a street with such blogger favourites as large white houses, pillars, and lamp posts. We found this one in South Kensington, and took outfit photos for each other (apart from Laila who mostly refused because she thought she was dressed like she was waiting tables). Thanks so much to the gorgeous Jess for taking these snaps of me!
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Coat - Topshop (from last season)
Shirt - Charity Shop
Skirt - Boohoo
Shoes - H&M

You know what's funny? I really used to hate lime green. Then this coat made its way into my life. If you look closely you can see that it's fluffy, so fluffy that Jess and I struggled to take any detail shots of it as Laila was too busy stroking it. I like it because the colour and texture appears as mildly eccentric against the rather sophisticated, manly cut of the coat. I paired it with a paisley shirt in a sort of mustardy yellow colour, which alongside the coat was an odd combination that made me look like an bizarrely dressed rich lady of high society. I imagine it's something Virginia Woolf might have worn, which made this Penguin classics bag the perfect accompaniment to the outfit. I picked it up in Waterstones and it has barely been off my arm since. I've even read a Room of One's Own, which is obviously an advantage in case people question me about it. I actually did an entire module on V. Woolf at university so she is certainly one of my sad literary lady home girls.
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Bag - Waterstones
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The bloggers together! 
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I really wish I'd taken some other photos of Jess's outfit, she looked absolutely amazing (as did Laila of course, but you know, I've seen her before, so I'm used to it). Her long coat was from a vintage shop and she certainly cut a striking figure whilst we were walking around! I really couldn't recommend her blog enough as she's so creative with her styling.
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Laila looking super cute! 

Laila refers to herself as a crap blogger, but honestly? She isn't. She's done so many interesting cultural posts, but I'd say my favourites from her are her lifestyle ones, where she talks about her veganism as well as topics such as being happy and confidence, something she has tons of. Every time I hang out with Laila I come away from it feeling happy and positive, she's a truly infectious person to be around (and I don't mean in terms of illness).

It was so great to be able to meet up with people I had previously only known from the interwebs. Laila and I agreed on the tube home that it's probably the main plus point of blogging. It's really expanded my horizons and allowed me to meet lovely, inspiring ladies such as these two, so I'm very thankful for it. Did I do enough gushing for you in this post? Cool, okay, goodbye now!
Thanks for reading! Belphoebe x Find me elsewhere! Instagram

Friday, 24 October 2014

Rainy Day Mermaid

My parents will undoubtedly be pleased to see this post. It's a long running joke in my family that you can't get me into an anorak for love nor money. After being forced into rather unflattering anoraks as a child for long walks around tiny villages in North Wales (the News resembled something of an 'anorak gang' as we trudged over the hilltops) I've had something against that particular article of clothing ever since. But, no more! This anorak is a mermaid's dream, although I'm not sure a mermaid would need one, but...never mind! It's from a label called The Ragged Priest, and after seeing it on tumblr I scoured around for it and found it on Asos, but sold out! I waited around, like a patient but fabulously fashionable vulture, until it came back into stock. It's perhaps not the most practical piece of clothing, but I'm secretly hoping for a rainy day (I shouldn't be kept too disappointed in England) so I can wear it without looking like a complete moron, or at least a dry one.
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Mac - Ragged Priest via Asos
Top - New Look
Skirt - Boohoo
Shoes - H&M
Bag - New Look via Asos

At the same time as my snazzy new mac arrived, I also received this bag from the New Look collection at ASOS. I haven't actually shopped at New Look for many years (the shirt is pretty old) but it looks like they have some beautiful bags in at the moment. I saw this one on one of my absolute favourite blogs Elizabeth Lola (she is the queen of holographic fashion and clashing prints) and snapped it up almost immediately. It's the perfect iridescent companion to the mac!
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Looking up at the rain...inside 
Thanks for reading! Belphoebe x Find me elsewhere! Instagram

Friday, 17 October 2014

Not Jumping in a Jumpsuit

Yay, it's finally cold again! *Coughs* sorry, damn, it's cold again. And it's finally time for me to arrive back in my element - tights and coats weather. But the pressing question now is, how do I combine my rather bright sense of style with an Autumn wardrobe, which is typically full of dark hues such as burgundy, navy and maroon? I have to admit, it feels a little strange going out in cold rainy weather dressed like a deluded weather ignoring highlighter. Not just any old highlighter though, one of those ones that had multiple colours which you could change when you clicked the pen. I just want to look like a pen really.
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Coat - Whistles via charity shop
Jumpsuit - Motel
Shoes - Charity shop
Bag - Kanken via Olive (sold out)

I feel like this outfit is a pretty good bet for the transition from hot to cold weather. Sure, the the jumpsuit isn't exactly the warmest article of clothing in the world, but at least it keeps my legs covered when I'm bored of tights or can't be bothered to wrestle myself into jeans (which incidentally is most days because skinny jeans just aren't that comfy). I've always been a big fan of Motel too. They do really fun prints, and I love the generosity exemplified by their hefty discounts and brilliant sales. On top of this is my favourite coat, which has been with me for two years, and though it's looking a little, ur, raggedy now, I still love it.

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And along with tights and coats there are of course...beanies! I have an extensive beanie collection. Some with hip to the scene slogans, some with London buses on them, and some with comically large bobbles. This particular one is from H&M, and ticks both the boxes of being jolly whilst keeping my head warm. I have very thin hair, so my head gets pretty nippy y'see.

This has just been a quick update post with what I'm wearing, but I'm hoping to have a couple of Halloween themed posts up soon! I hope you like my new super spooky background too.

Thanks for reading! Belphoebe x Find me elsewhere! Instagram

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