Monday, 13 October 2014

Unlikely Style Icons | Peggy Olson

Starting a new series here on the blog, of the unlikely style icons that appear as if out of nowhere, quietly carving out a style niche that many overlook in favour of their more classically stylish counterparts. So the Joan Harris' and Olivia Popes', the Cher Horowitz's and Holly Golightlys' and the Rihannas' and the Blake Livelys', step aside. We salute you, but there's something fascinating and inspiring about the offbeat and the obscure - from TV characters to news anchors and everything in between.

Peggy Olson - Mad Men

Nothing says style evolution like the transformation of Peggy Olson (played by Elisabeth Moss). A-line midis, pleated gingham, sensible shoes and those bangs were Peggy's nonfashion fashion of the first few seasons. As she grew in strength and capability, so did her wardrobe - bold colour, shifts, chiffons and layered textures/prints, Peggy nails the professional woman of the sixties vibe.  
Music brought to you by The Animals - sixties perfection. Press play and time travel.

Early Peggy

We meet Peggy as a 50s relic - good girl gingham, sweaters and plenty of A-line action. Void of accessories and embellishments, Peggy was projecting a serious "I'm-sweet-and-innocent-so-no-need-to-notice-me" vibe.

Transition Peggy

Okay, so we've still got the trademark Peggy bangs, but she's literally and figuratively letting her hair down. She's streamlined the frumpy frocks by rocking the waist belt to perfection, and opts for bolder colour and grown up gingham. That's the beauty of Peggy - there's no uncharacteristic 360. She maintains the same motif but evolves - we're still seeing A-Line shapes and high necklines.

New Peggy

WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DECADE MAKES. Here Peggy's style is fully realised. The colour palette - characteristic mustards, and terracottas of the mid-late sixties, but punctuated with plums, aubergines and deep navys, and print and colour accents that don't overpower. Slightly shorter hemlines and A SIDE FRINGE(!) mark Peggy's new found confidence and power. Note Peggy's style staples - A-line shapes, the necktie and pussybow, simply accessories, high necklines - are still present.

Mad Men costume designer Janie Bryant (who is an absolute genius in my opinion) gives us a real woman rather than a 2D character, and she wonderfully demonstrate the evolution from girlhood to womanhood in a rapidly changing 60s landscape. 

What are your thoughts on Peggy's style? And who are your unlikely fashion icons?

Thursday, 5 June 2014

Film + Fashion | The Seventies.

So if you know me, or to be honest even if you've had a brief encounter with me at a bus stop, you will know that I am obsessed with The Seventies. The music, the films, the fashion. Everything. My idea of a good time is scrolling through pictures of Stevie Nicks whilst Led Zeppelin plays softly in the background. The aesthetic influences a lot of the things I do/write/imagine, and film (for overwhelmingly obvious reasons) tends to sit highest on the list of personal influence.

And let me make this clear, I'm not a seventies snob: I will majorly obsess over films set in the seventies, too. Sure, it may not have the same je ne sais quois, but i'll take it. The fashion for me is one of the selling points of this era - glamorous, put together, sexy. Tons of gold, sequins, fur, big hair and palazzo pants. What's not to adore?

So somehow I managed to pick my favourite Seventies films and their respective fashion wins. Believe me when I say this is the streamlined list. But first, press play and say hello to 1976:

American Hustle | 2013 | David O Russell
 Apart from this film being a pure work of genius, good god the fashion! If I were Amy Adams I would have squealed with delight every single day I saw what wardrobe had in store for me - plenty of plunging necklines, shimmer eyeshadow, gold hoops and hair styles that look like they took around 4 hours to perfect and an entire cupboard of products (I'm mainly talking about Bradley Cooper's character there).

Boogie Nights | 1997 | Paul Thomas Anderson
Possibly the greatest movie made about the "Golden Age" of pornography, PTA's Boogie Nights captured the glamour, the destruction and the excess. Guys rocking tight pants and short shorts, gals in daisy dukes
and sunglasses. Heaven.

C.R.A.Z.Y | 2005 | Jean-Marc VallĂ©e
Incredibly funny, poignant and moving (ugh, I hate that word) coming-of-age French-Canadian film about a teenagers struggle with sexual identity in a family of macho men, played out beautifully to the sounds of David Bowie, circa Ziggy era. Check out those bell bottoms!

Anchor Man 2 | 2013 | Adam McKay
Uh, yeah. I went there. Something about the three piece patterned and coloured suits, revere collar-leather jacket combo, and his-n-hers outfits. So glam.

American Gangster | 2007 | Ridley Scott
This image encompasses something I adore about the seventies aesthetic - the distinct colour palette. Earthy tones of yellows, browns, khakis, terracottas and burgundies dominate this era, and American Gangster stays true.

Taxi Driver | 1976 | Martin Scorsese
This just about sums up the entire era in one photograph: Short shorts, tie top, wedges, tote bag, floppy hat, round sunnies: this image could have been straight out of Missguided's S/S lookbook. Never has a film depicted 1970's New York as richly and, well, disturbingly, as Taxi Driver.

Casino | 1995 | Martin Scorsese
And saving the best 'til last, my favourite film, my life's inspiration: Casino. Trust me when I say I tried to streamline the pictures, but short of me posting the entire film on here you had to get the idea. Ginger McKenna and Sam Rothstein are, without doubt, the best dressed couple in film history. Lavish, opulent, downright decadent, Casino really taps into the heart of the seventies gambling gold rush where gold, fine furs and tailored suits were consumed the way you and I might Primark Basics. I adore Scorsese's attention to detail, with every frame its own mini ode to the era. 

Anyone else a fan of seventies chic? Or are there any other eras that tickle your fashion fancy?

Drea xo

Five Things I Learned from my Day Job.

ME: “So I've given it a lot of thought, and I've decided. I’m handing in my notice.”
BOSS: “Are you joking?”

So that’s kind of how it went. Deciding to leave my day job was one of the hardest decisions I’ve made but there really was no other option for me. I had to. Even if that meant no security, no income, no guarantees. The thought of how much worse it would be if I never took that chance was unbearable. So I quit.

Now anyone who has ever worked in retail, especially in a supervisory role knows how soul destroying, maddening, and clawing-at-the-walls-ing it can be, but roughly three weeks into working freelance full time I soon realised that, well, pretty much everything is. So if you’re working somewhere you don’t want to be, don’t dismiss the whole experience as a waste of time, there’s valuable lessons to be learned:

1.      I learned how to work with, ahem, difficult people.
Maybe every workplace isn’t like mine was, but mine was full of… characters. Generally, corporate companies with hierarchies more complex and baffling than Ponzi Schemes tend to be breeding grounds for huge egos, insecurities, superiority complexes. But this is nothing compared to most entertainment industries. Whether you’re trying to get into film, TV, music or the art world, the sooner you learn how to decipher the ancient language of “bullshit” the better.

2.      I learned how to manage people.
This isn’t just for the people who work in supervisory roles. Whether you’re an office manager or a secretary, an assistant store manager or a shop assistant, you are managing people all day – most of all managing yourself. But for me, managing a team of people every day was just training in how to manage an entire film, or a shoot, or my own career. Being able to get your point across without enraging people is an art form – you can either come across as a dictator or a push over, but working your day job is the best way to perfect what works for you.

3.      I learned to be disciplined.
Every day for six months I had to be up at 5am to get to work for 7. It was a mild form of torture but I had no option (other than get fired, which didn’t particularly appeal to me). Before that my rota changed daily, meaning sometimes I wouldn’t get home till midnight. As awful as it was at the time it was invaluable. Freelancing is hard to do – self-motivating yourself to get up and put in a full day’s work when you can just as easily stay in bed binge watching Fringe all day (just me?) But waking up early isn't so alien to me anymore, and getting home late is nothing. I don’t know how well I would have coped coming straight out of uni into 13 hour shoots, hardly any sleep, and waking myself up in the morning to be at my desk by 9.

4.      I made mistakes – on someone else’s dime.
This might sound super harsh, but honestly wouldn’t you rather get the really big learning curves out of the way before your livelihood depends on it? I’m not saying take the piss out of your employer, but there’s something to be said for working for a company where your superiors are giving you feedback daily and you are coming up against problems you hadn't imagined. Going straight into working for yourself without knowing what kind of professional personality you have can be tricky. Think about it this way – if you walked into a shop and got horrible service, you’d be less inclined to go back there, right? You might even tell your friends. Well when you work for yourself, you are your own brand, if you don’t know how to deliver excellent customer service, how to solve problems and how to talk to people you may find it hard out there.

5.      I learned what matters most to me.

Hey, retail isn’t so bad, but what I do now is sooo much better. I know what I have to lose if I don’t work, so those days when I can’t be bothered to go to that meeting, or work through that pile of paperwork, or convince that client that it isn’t possible to have a film sequence with a car chase, pyrotechnics and explosions on a budget of £100, I think, “at least I’m not stacking boxes in a stockroom…”

Drea xo

Saturday, 17 August 2013


So after a year off, I am making my triumphant return to blogging. Aah how I have missed this. Anyway, enough with my self congratulating indulgence, lets crack on with the haul.
I've got some beauty, fashion and home pieces that I've bought over the past month or so, some of which, as you'll see, I've used quite extensively already!

 LtoR: Champneys lime foaming body scrub * Original Source pink grapefruit shower gel * No7 cleansing water * Boots Botanics 100% organic rosewater toning spritz * Boots Botanics 81% organic day cream.
 Soap & Glory hand food * Sanctuary Spa body moisture spray

Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte Shine in shade 6 * YSL Le Taint Touche Eclait in shade BD60 * YSL Bronzer in Shade 3

LtoR: Yankee Candle Tumbler in Black Cherry * Medium Jar in Black Coconut * Votive Sampler in pink Dragon Fruit * Tealights in Midnight Jasmine 
[A good selection of Yankee Candles are 50% off in Clintons at the moment, and Black Cherry is the candle of the month and is 25% off!]


Boyfriend Jeans, £8 (sale), New Look

 Ankle Strap Block Heel Sandals, £24.99, New Look

Electric Blue Chiffon Camisole, £9.99, New Look

Midi Bodycon Dress, £25, New Look

I'm in love with these pieces from the New Look AW13 collection. They've got some gorgeous colours and patterns in at the moment and of course their shoe section is to die for! Look out for a skincare routine post which will go into more detail about the Boots Botanics products and I'll have reviews on the YSL products up on the blog soon!

What AW13 collections from the high street is everyone loving at the moment? 

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Drea's Guide to Packing: Part Two!

So this part is all about clothes, shoes and accessories! Now bearing in mind not everything may apply to you here - but going to Hong Kong meant I had to pack with many things in mind: A city break, the sun and heat, and the beach! So if you're spending a week on the beach, take elements of what's in my suitcase and adapt it to suit your needs!

Three pairs of shoes (not including the ones you wear to travel in!) seems like a good number.

*Sandals, £30, Office - Pretty sandals are great in hot weather - flip flops can be uncomfortable when you're doing a lot of walking, and these can double up as a nighttime shoe to wear with your maxi's.
*Wedges, £30, a boutique - Wedges are my heel of choice when I'm in hot weather. If you're an old lady like me and your feet get swollen in the heat  wedges go easy on the feet, and the light fabric on these are breathable and don't make my feet feel trapped!
*Flatforms, £23, Next - These shoes are good for night or day. If you're not going to be doing a lot of walking, these go well with shorts for a casual pretty look, or with a dress at night to hit up a bar or to lounge about. I love lounging when I'm on holiday.


All the boring bits and bobs, that you'll kick yourself if you forget. A towel, PJ bottoms (with the air conditioning on in your hotel, it may get a little chilly!), black shorts and PJ shorts (part of a set, TopShop).
Also include one or two baggy t-shirts and vests for sleeping and hanging out in!


Maxi's are really really great for a hot, city break. Sometimes it feels a little odd walking around in teeny shorts and vests on the tube when people are going to work, so maxi dresses and skirts are great at keeping you cool and feeling comfortable. 
*Coral Maxi dress, £1(!), Primark - I picked up this gorgeous Grecian maxi dress from Primark in Ireland last winter for £1 - gotta love the Primark bargain bin! This is good for a daytime/evening meal, a bar or even a sexy and elegant cover up on the beach!
*Orange maxi dress, £10, H&M - A plain cotton/jersey maxi dress is both comfortable and practical - you can team this with sandals, flip flops, or Converse! The racer back style keeps it sporty and casual and the breathable fabric keeps you cool during the hot summer days. Wear shopping, sightseeing or throw on if you need to run down to the hotel lobby!
*Beige Maxi skirt, £52, American Apparel - This is my absolute favourite maxi skirt that goes everywhere with me! Wear on a night out with wedges and a crop top, or dress down with sandals and a vest for daytime prettiness!


A lightweight cardigan is good for many reasons. Ever been to a shopping mall in a hot country? Air conditioning! Cinema? Air conditioning! Metro? Hotel lobby? Taxis? You get the picture. 
*White shirt, New Look - A baggy white shirt is a safe bet for throwing over t shirts. Pick one with a nice lightweight fabric so as not to stifle you!
*Mint Cardigan, £7, New Look sale - A nice, pretty coloured cardi is a gals best friend. A soft cotton always feels nice against skin that's been in the sun too long - avoid wool, or synthetics as they trap heat and irritate!
*Long crotchet cardigan, £4, Charity shop - This is great to wear at night. Keeps the pesky mosquitoes a bay, can make you feel more comfortable and covered  when out late at night, but all those little crotchety holes let your skin BREATHE!


*Bag, £1, Primark * T-Shirt, gift from friend, Motel * Mint denim shorts, £10, New Look * Sandals, £30, Office*
This is great daytime outfit for shopping, sightseeing, or a nice lunch. How cute is this T-Shirt?! My lovely friend Amanda (who I went to Hong Kong with) got me this from Nasty Gal when she was ordering herself some killer Lita's. Us gapped-toothed babes have fnally hit the map! I bought these New look shorts baggy - there's nothing worse than tight denim in the heat!


*Striped bikini, £8, La Senza sale * Blue bikini bottoms, £2.50, BHS sale * free tote bag from the * White sunglasses, Roxy @ TKMaxx, £20 * Candy stripe Sunglasses, £3, Primark * Aviators, free with Cosmo magazine!*

And finally, the beach! We only planned to go to the beach once or twice, so I only packed one full bikini set and some spare bottoms. You can find some really pretty pieces in the sales - I got this La Senza number when they were, ahem, going under, back in February. My thing is, you're on the beach, surrounded by water and sand, leaving your crap unattended half the time - don't take valuables! I mean, you could take your vintage Ray-Bans and limited edition Marc Jacobs tote bag, but I'd much rather take the free shit I've accumulated over the years.

So there you have it! Throw in a dozen pairs of knickers, bras, socks and a couple pairs of tights and that's your lot! Bear in mind I was planning to stuff my suitcase with brand new clothes so I packed pretty lightly. If you're not planning on doing too much shopping, throw in a few more outfits! Part three is the final installment - what to wear when travelling! What I keep in my hand luggage, how to feel most comfortable and how to move from one climate to another!

Anything you'd add/take away from my suitcase?

Drea xoxo

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Drea's guide to packing: Part One!

Hello hello kittens!
Drea's Little Junkyard is BACK in full swing, I'm back from my travels and can't wait to start blogging full time again. I thought I'd start with a packing guide as a few people requested it and I went away pretty early in the year so loads you ladies have your vacations to still look forward to!

I've just come back from spending 10 wonderful days in Hong Kong! What is so great about Hong Kong is you get you have the best of both worlds when it comes to the perfect holiday: hot weather and gorgeous beaches, and bustling city life, great food and great shopping! (Hong Kong and Paris photo diary coming soon). 
This does make packing slightly tricky - getting a balance between practical clothes for hot weather and lots of walking, beach wear and comfy clothes, and bringing your style to one of the street fashion capitals of the world was quite a challenge! 
This isn't a comprehensive guide, but incorporating some of these tips into your own packing and tailoring to your needs might come in handy! Part one is going to be all about Beauty: Toiletries, make up, tools, and must haves!


So this looks like a lot, but trust me it's all essential! I like to keep all my liquids together and in my suitcase to avoid he whole liquid ban hassle. The black vanity bag (behind) can fit everything nicely and guards against any spillage. 

Back Row: Heat defense spray for hair, Superdrug; Sun protection spray factor 10, Ambre Solaire; Shower Gel in Satsuma, Body Shop and Body Butter duo in Acai (in front), Body Shop; Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish and Liz Earle face cream (in front); Tanning oil, Avon.
* When your spending all day in 30 degree weather your hair is going to dry out badly. I spray some of this in my hair before leaving the hotel and let it dry in the sun and it keeps my hair from frizzing out and becoming brittle. 
*I guess factor 10 sun protection is pretty laughable but trust me, the fact that I'm using protection at all is an achievement for me.
*A yummy smelling shower gel that's invigorating in the morning but comforting at night is perfect, and Body Shop shower gels are extremely hydrating so air conditioning doesn't leave my skin dry in the morning. It's important to keep moisturized as sun, water, and dehydration can leave your skin feeling less than fighting fit.
*Liz Earle goes everywhere with me, full stop.
*Everyone thinks I'm crazy for spraying oil onto my skin when on the beach, but hey, it means I tan quicker and spend less time in the sun... right?

Middle Row: Make up protector spray, ELF; nail polish remover, Superdrug; Insect bite soother spray, Superdrug.
*Make up protector spray is a must in hot weather to keep your make up from sliding all over the place. It's also great for touch ups throughout the day and to cool your face down!
*A mini nail polish remover always comes in handy - nothing worse than chipping your manicure on holiday!
*Pesky insects (especially mosquitoes) are more than a bother - spending your whole holiday going crazy with itchy insect bites is never fun. I use mosquito and bug repellent before I leave the hotel (not pictured) and carry this with me all day, so if the worst happens and I get bitten, I can soothe it straight away!

Front Row (clockwise): Mini deodorant, Sure; JLO Deseo perfume; Face wipes, Simple; Body wipes, carex; mini toothpaste, Colgate.
*A mini deodorant spray is great to pop in your bag and have on you all day - VERY important in a hot and humid location!
*A nice perfume that is great for day and night!
*Face and body wipes are quick, easy and refreshing! I keep the face wipes in my hand luggage as when you're on a long haul flight (16 hours there, 27 hours back!) it's nice to take your make up off and relax.
*Mini toothpaste because sometimes the hotel toothpaste just doesn't do the trick!


This goes into my hand luggage as I can't have any of my compacts breaking! I go for the two-maximum rule: Only two of one make-up group: 
Two powders - A powder foundation, Illamasqua (centre), and a pressed powder, ELF (far left).
Two Blushers: ELF blush in a warm pink/coral shimmer and Smashbox duo blush (cheating a bit here!)
Two Lips: A red lipstick, Illamasqua in salacious and a brown shimmer lipgloss, Mally Beauty.
Two brushes: My ELF power brush which is use for EVERYTHING, and a Bobbi Brown soft brush for pressed powder.
I also have a primer sample from Benefit as my ELF primer is running low (review on that soon!), a liquid eyeliner, ELF; concealer, Collection 2000; Eye primer, ELF; Eyeshadow palette, Sleek; A bronzer, MUA; eye cream duo, ELF and my glasses and contact lenses case!

I left the mascara I wanted to take in Paris so my friend had to bring that for me, but I try to go very bare make-up wise when I'm on holiday - during the day I tend to only use Primer, eye primer, concealer under my eyes, a light dusting of powder foundation, blusher and pressed powder over the top.


I keep all other bits and bobs in this bag which goes into my suitcase, but doubles up as my  on the go make-up bag. I put all the girly bits and necessities in there, things like hair bands, hair grips, a small nail file and all pictured!

Tune in for part two tomorrow: Clothes, shoes and accessories!

Drea xo