Jean Genie with Gap Denim Addicts

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As someone that spent their entire teenage years in denim, I know only too well how much a good pair of jeans can feel like a high-five from the universe. Except…finding a good pair of jeans seemed a lot easier back then. Maybe there was less choice, or maybe I’m just fussier now? I don’t wear jeans very often any more, I’m more the kind of gal that you’ll find in a dress on even the most relaxed days, but I do like to have at least one really great pair of jeans in my wardrobe – just in case!

I hadn’t even ventured into the denim department of most stores for what felt like years. It was probably around the time most people became obsessed with low-rise denim that I tapped out. I’m not saying I need my jeans to skim my underwire but at the same time I don’t want to flash my butt all day to unwilling strangers (you’re welcome!). When it comes to jeans, one style doesn’t really suit everyone and I want something that suits my style, flatters my shape and above all, feels comfortable.

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Gap have always made finding your holy grail pair of jeans the forefront of their mission, and when they recently got in touch to tell me all about their newest service, Denim Addicts, I was intrigued. This one-on-one appointment can either be booked in advance, or done on a drop-in basis (which is how I did it) and involves meeting with one of the in-store Gap Denim Addicts – specially trained denim advisors that know everything from fabrications and fit, to alterations and distressing.

When I popped in, the first thing I did was pick out a pair of jeans from Gap’s endless styles and washes of denim. The advisors were really helpful, making sure I had everything I needed and were closeby if I wanted to try any other sizes. It didn’t take me too long to find a pair that I loved: the Best Girlfriend fit in an easy-to-style indigo wash. What I like about these babies are the mid-rise (YES!) and vintage-influenced cut (DOUBLE YES!) – plus the denim has just a little bit of stretch, making them super comfy. No stiff, starchy fabric here!

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Now that I’d found my new Best Girlfriend, it was time to style her up! This is where the service becomes even more personal, and where the Gap Denim Addicts really show you what they can do. As I stood in the fitting room wearing the jeans, we planned out exactly how to customise them. We agreed on some distressing on the knee and top of the leg, as well as a little on the back pocket too. I was happy with the length, so didn’t feel that I needed any hemming alterations, though it was offered.

I had the final decision over how much distressing I wanted, and where on the denim it would sit. I could either wait in-store for the customisation (which took just under half an hour) or come back and pick them up later. The end result? A completely bespoke pair of jeans that flatter and fit!

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There’s something really special about having an item of clothing that no-one else has. Yeah, you can buy these jeans off the rack at Gap, but they have been customised for my own personal style and my body shape so the end result is unique. I couldn’t wait to take them out for a spin, so a couple of Saturdays ago, Gary and I spent a sunny afternoon in our old stomping ground.

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We started at Finneston, grabbing lunch at Seb and Milie. Is it just me or does sunny weather call for all things watermelon-themed? Either way, the watermelon, feta and mint salad was a real winner. The smell of fresh bread was intoxicating (SERIOUSLY!), so I couldn’t resist a brioche muffin and a crueller while we were there too!  #sorrynotsorry

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Afterwards, we took a stroll along Dumbarton Road, and headed up to Byres Road to go for a snoop around the second-hand record shops. Oxfam Music is still one of my favourites, even 16 years later…

The cut of my jeans meant that only a vintage headscarf would do, so I added a splash of colour with a bold scarf from Style By Portobello – whose vintage accessories are carefully sourced from London’s iconic Portobello Road market. They’ve also just launched their very own style box, which means fashion magpies can be surprised with hand-picked pieces on a one-off or subscription basis.

After a walk through Ashton Lane and Creswell Lane, we stopped by Juice Garden for some juice before heading home. Turns out all of that wandering is thirsty work!

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I never thought I’d see the day when a pair of jeans would make it back into my regular rotation, but the cute style, custom features and comfy fit of these ones have earned them a place in my weekend wardrobe. The Gap Denim Addicts service is totally free (I’ve already been back and had a pair of new denim shorts distressed as well!) and you can make an appointment, or drop in to find out more at Gap Buchanan Street.

Have you found your holy grail pair of jeans?

Like a jean genie…

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With thanks to the Gap Denim Addicts 

 

Friday Hi-Fives: Surprises, Shoots and Saying Thank You

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You might have noticed that last week there was a distinct lack of hi-fives around here, and if you know me (even just a little bit), you can probably guess why that was. It’s been a bit of a strange week since hearing the unexpected news about Prince, and I’ve contemplated writing about it a lot. Drafting and deleting my thoughts over and over again. It’s hard losing an icon, and a personal hero – and it’s even harder putting it all into words that make sense. Instead of dwelling on that here, I want to stay positive – it’s in my nature to focus on the good times, the concert memories and the joy that his music brings me. So all I will say is: thank you, Prince – you will always be my favourite.

Earlier this week, I unexpectedly made my debut as a lingerie model. Well, kind of! The lovely people at Ultimo and House of Fraser invited me to take part in their blogger style challenge and play dress up with some of their new collections for a fun fashion shoot. Cue the dressing room montage! The theme was ‘underwear as outerwear’, and with so many beautiful pieces to try on, it wasn’t as tricky a trend as you might expect. I ended up putting together an embellished Biba ensemble while channelling my inner 3rd Eye Girl – though it might have ended up looking more I Dream of Jeannie (you decide!). Either way, it was a ton of fun and a great way to spend a rainy Tuesday!

Gary and I enjoyed a yummy lunch at Seb & Mili in Finneston this week, and if you haven’t paid them a visit you HAVE to put it on your to-do list! Their brioche muffins are to die for. The good food theme continued with a trip to Cafe Strange Brew for some EPIC French toast, and a girly dinner at Yo Sushi to round off a busy week.

Yesterday was the launch of Tatty Devine’s annual lucky dip boxes, hooray! You can pick up a surprise box of hand-picked jewellery at sample sale prices from their website, perfect if like me, you’re a fan of bold, playful design! My friends at Team Tatty sent me a sneaky preview box (pictured above!), and I can’t wait to wear the little flamingo in Florida…

Last night I headed along to Armani on Ingram Street to celebrate the opening of their new store. With a live fashion show, pink drinks and a chance to catch up with people I hadn’t seen in ages, it was worth braving the crazy weather for! The new store is beautifully designed and I spied some gorgeous sunglasses and bright scarves that would be perfect for summer adventuring.

I’m excited for a long weekend and keeping everything crossed for sunshine. We’ll be spending most of it celebrating Gary’s birthday, what are you guys up to? Let me share some good vibes to start us off!

This week, I’m hi-fiving because…

…Vicky is the world’s cutest zombie! I’d even let her eat my brains if she asked me nicely

…the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup milkshakes at Byron are so good that I ate mine with a spoon (true story)

…Byres Road Makers Market is on this weekend – ideal for checking out local talent and handmade goodies

…I watched the remake of The Jungle Book and LOVED it (and you can check out Gary’s review here!)

…the holiday excitement is reaching an all-time high! One week to go!

Hi-Five Homework: Make some time for yourself over the long weekend and spend it doing exactly what you want. You might take a nap, go for a run or indulge in your favourite trashy TV – what would you do with an hour that was just for you?

Have an awesome few days and I’ll see you next week!

With love to the nines,

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Beauty Hit List: March & April 2016

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It’s time for another Beauty Hit List! I can’t believe that two whole months have passed since the last time I talked about the lotions and potions that are getting my heart all a-flutter, and I’m excited to share my latest beauty picks with you. These are the products that I’ve been using and keeping handy lately, rounded up and ready for us to take a look at. Are you ready? Let’s do this…

The POREfessional Face Primer by Benefit

Here’s the thing about primer: before I used it myself, I was REALLY skeptical. I was convinced that it was one of those products that didn’t really do anything and that it was probably a step in your makeup routine that wouldn’t make a difference. That was until I started using primer myself, and I stand corrected! This pro balm from Benefit does everything that a good primer should – it smooths my skin, minimizes the appearance of pores and helps my make up to glide on (and stay put!). Oh, and of course (being Benefit!) the packaging is adorable!

Velvet Sheer Foundation by Sara Hill 

Ah, the angst of being a pale girl with a ghostly complexion! It’s tough to find a foundation that matches my skintone at the best of times, but to find one that also delivers skin-conditioning goodness and antioxidant protection? Needles and haystacks spring to mind. Which is exactly why I rejoiced when I tried out Velvet Sheer Foundation, developed here in Glasgow by Sara Hill. The lightweight formula means that I can custom-build my coverage, and know that my skin is getting some TLC at the same time. And my shade of choice is Linen (that’s one step lighter than Porcelain, just FYI!).

Afterglow 8-Hour Powder Highlighter in Aura by Urban Decay

When I first seen this sugary sweet pink highlighter, it was love at first sight! The formula is so light and easy to work with, I can gently blend it to bring a subtle glow to my cheeks or build it up when I can’t get enough of the iridescent shimmer (which is often!). This is a new release from Urban Decay, and I can see it sticking around in my day-to-day make up bag for a long time!

Shampure Dry Shampoo by Aveda

Whether you need to refresh your locks or just enjoy the extra texture, dry shampoo is a bathroom cabinet must-have for so many of us. For me, it’s a little of both! If I need to revive my hair for an extra day, I will always reach for dry shampoo and Aveda’s Shampure has quickly become my new favourite. Instead of coming out in that weird aerosol mist (that I ALWAYS end up inhaling by accident!), this is easily dispensed in powder form – meaning I can squeeze out the right amount into my hands and massage it into my hair directly. This is going to be a saviour on holiday, I just know it…

Lip Magic by Charlotte Tilbury 

First off, Charlotte Tilbury makes beautiful products. I just want to put that out there. Like, the kind of delicious design that make you want to just hand over your bank card and wave a white flag in surrender! Lip Magic is an anti-aging balm for the lips, promising to protect, strengthen and regenerate the skin. It’s also packed with natural ingredients to help encourage youthful-looking lips, such as vitamin E, Propolis and shea butter. I’ve been using it more as a moisturising base for my lipstick, taking advantage of its ability to smooth and treat my lips before applying a bold colour for the perfect pout.

So this is my current beauty hit list, but tell me about yours! Have you used any of these goodies? Is there something you’d recommend I try?

With love, shimmering cheekbones and kissable lips,

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