anti-valentines suggestions

(or any day of the year, for that matter.)

1. Get sucked into an 8tracks playlist black hole. 
Tags I recommend exploring include: 'single', 'fuck you', 'harry styles' and 'music to cry to'

2. Experiment with portion size. 
Why else would Thornton's make those huge 930g boxes, if not for you to consume in one sitting?

3. Stay up to date with social media.
There's nothing like mindless scrolling, loneliness masked by acerbic gibes, and vomit-inducing photo + emoji combinations, to squander a few hours of your life and teach you how to think critically and appreciate cultural practises.

4. Pick your own flowers
Tesco Finest roses last a week, but with a little watering and desperation, your aloe vera plant can last forever. Plus, you can slather the gel on your face when you inevitably break out from your excessive chocolate consumption.

5. Write sarcastic lists of things to do on Valentine's Day because you're tired, hungry, and in bed at 5pm.
Until next year, mes amours.



WHERE IS ALL THE GLITTER? (or, why i don't like normcore)

" Using clothing for self-expression is uncomfortable, expensive, time-consuming and complicated. Perhaps disengaging from fashion is the best way to respond to its ever-shifting minutiae. Normal is chic."  
- Rory Satran, i-D, in an article about the normcore trend.

The statement above is one that I wholeheartedly disagree with. Those who follow me on Twitter may be familiar with my frequent gripes with the normcore movement, and mainly the labelling of it as such, so I decided I should probably figure out exactly why I dislike it so much.

I should start by saying that I am unashamedly, unabashedly, in love with the ritual act of putting on clothes, buying them, finding them, altering them, the lot. I JUST LOVE DRESSING UP.
I dress according to the mood I am in each day.
Or the person I want to be, or the music I'm listening to, or the way I need to feel about the world. 

Vintage camel overcoat for my Cambridge interview.
I am confident, collected - a 'grown up'.

Floor length flowered kimono, walking home, half-drunken haze, whilst the sun comes up.
I am the light, intangible, ethereal.

Black leather jacket, black leather shorts, black leather boots.
I am danger, reckless, delinquent.

In my eyes, clothing is one of the ultimate forms of self-expression, completely unique and endlessly interesting. Thus, disengaging from fashion seems like disengaging with a part of yourself - why would you want to?

When I was younger I strived to be more  'normal' and tried, like I'm sure every child does, to be more like everyone else. I remember in some assemblies at school where everyone had to stand up, I stood in a weird half squat/slouch stance (you know the kind when you're in somewhere where the ceiling is a bit too low? ouch) in an attempt to stick out less for being the tallest. Or purposely get answers wrong in tests so that my score would be in the middle, not too smart cuz that would draw attention. Of course, it was all fucking silliness and too much effort to keep up with for long, but I suppose what it's left me with is the knowledge that any attempts to be normal just leads to feelings of inadequacy and unsatisfaction. I mean, 'normal' is subjective by all intents and purposes, so it's a state about as achievable as Taylor Swift becoming winner of this year's Best Rap Album.

I think that's why a trend whose philosophy is sameness and fitting in is so boring and questionable to me. 

Comfort, minimalism, practicality... those are all wonderful things! I embrace Nike Free Runs and welcome turtle-neck jumpers into my life with open arms! 

But I would want the addition of them in my wardrobe to be deemed as an extension of my personal style, expression and self, and not a reduction of it. 

Whilst I totally think that the key pieces and posterchilds (or erm, Seinfelds) of the normcore movement are amazing unto themselves, I must disagree with Ms. Satran: normal isn't chic, individuals are.

(image from asos.com, quote from id)



how to be a heroine

As my poor eyesight and overdue library book charges can confirm, I read a lot of books. Partially in the hope that they will help my mind expand in the same fashion of Kylie Jenner's lips, rapidly and making me into an 'adult'. And partially because there is nothing like "as soon as I've finished this page/chapter/trilogy" for prolonging procrastination. 

Whilst most of the literature I consume is hardly ground-breaking refined (Agatha Christie and YA romance, anyone?) I'd like to think I know a really good book when I read one.

Which takes us to 'How To Be A Heroine', by Samantha Ellis.

This book.

I don't know how to review books properly, so I'm not going to pretend that this is anything other than a gushing love letter to the book and author.

In a slightly-too-simple nutshell, 'How To Be A Heroine' contains Samantha Ellis' explorations and reflections on the heroines and books that have shaped her life and that she has grown up with, almost all of which are heroines and books that are my favourites too. I can't really think of a good way of summarising it as I'm no good at conciseness, so you're best off just reading it really.

You know when you hear a certain song or whatever for the first time, and a little light flicks on in your brain: it's that weird clich├ęd light of where have you been all my life how is this the first time i've heard of this oh my god oh my god this is amazing crossed with i was unaware i shared a brain with another human being this is all so relevant did it come from my own head oh man you just GET me

That's how I felt for the entirety of this brilliant, personal, insightful, and intelligent piece of work. It made me think and smile and I wish I could have written it myself. As a seventeen year old girl who has based an alarming number of decisions on what I believed my favourite protagonists would do, I feel like I kind of needed this book, and it has been placed firmly into my all time favourites.

Samantha Ellis, thank you for affirming to my uncertain teenage mind that yes, books are cool, and female friendships are the most important, and it's okay to change your mind about things, and suffering is not your becoming, and to do work that you love, and boys with beautiful names and faces will not necessarily save you. To me, you're up there with Franny, Lizzy and the lot.



the end of an absence

Hello blog, it's me, Sonia.

I have returned, with nary a blury iPhone pic or boring free clothes promo in tow - isn't that refreshing?

I lost interest in blogging, magazines, fashion and the like for a long time and thus updating this felt like a chore, which it decidedly should not be. I've felt very uninspired for the past year or two, and I've tried to work out why that was. 

Much head-scratching and soul-searching has narrowed it down to a combination of normcore, weight gain, exams, pyjamas, and contouring, which has left me brain dead, hoodie clad and with crumbs around my mouth.

Writing, along with pretty clothes, is one of my first and greatest loves, and recently that old great love has been rekindled (along with my feelings for clothes somewhat.) And more than ever, I feel a real need to write - to practise anything other than being hungover or twitter stalking, and to create and focus. 

This return to the blog is a little different from my previous returns, as I'm going to use it more for writing now. I'm not really sure what it'll be about, or if anyone will read it, but hopefully it'll be kinda interesting and I'll kinda hone my skills. That's not to say I'm no longer a fashion blogger, having started aged 12 I think I'll always be one, but there's no good in forcing it. 

ps. now seems like a good chance to say thank you, thank you, thank you, to all the readers and brands and delightful people who have said left lovely comments, sent lovely emails and messages, and supplied me with lovely clothes over the years! it melts my icicle heart




1. beautiful dress gifted from Blue Vanilla, just waiting for a night out worth its glittery loveliness

2. LDN memories

3. magazines know the score

4. ultimate hairspiration (marycake).... going to the hairdressers the day after tomorrow: DO I OR DON'T I?

(p.s. my camera remote has sadly broken so taking pics and posting is pretty impossible - apologies all around)



tango in the night


On a massive Fleetwood Mac kick this week, which isn't an unusual thing, however the arrival of this dress into my life has made swaying around to Stevie's dulcet tones feel more than magical. It's no secret that I'm a sucker for all that is black, sheer and vaguely witch-like, and this dress has those qualities in spades. I don't think any dress could be more perfect, could it?



good hair days


I'm not afraid to admit that I am USELESS with hair. My hairdressing skills begin and end with frantically curling it (with straighteners) and panicking as the ends begin to sizzle (smoke coming off your hair... normal right?) Unsurprisingly then, my hair is getting thin and uneven looking.
So when I was offered hair extensions by Hairtrade, I jumped at the chance, even though: a) I have pretty long hair already, and b) I can barely put my hair in a bun, let alone clip in other long extensiony bits.
But I thought it would be fun to try, and it turns out I really really really like them - they're so easy to use, even for an idiot like me, they match my weird almost-black-but-not-quite hair colour PERFECTLY and they're so soft and shiny looking (they're real human hair), and make my hair look longer and neater. 10/10.



inspiration: sheer black

Elie Saab & some images I found on tumblr.

This is why (sheer) black is my favourite colour.



walking on a dream

KIMONO - Kiss The Sky via 9th Willow // PLAYSUIT - UNIF via 9th Willow // SHOES - Desire Clothing (gifted)

You'd think being in the middle of exams and trying to cram a year's worth of work into like three days prior to each exam wouldn't allow much time for new clothes, but evidently this is not the case. 

I bought this UNIF playsuit for my birthday, through some kind of miracle it managed to stay perfectly white after a night out - vodka and lemonade drinkers, you are the best. 

This kimono kind of tortured me as I'd stalked photos of it on the 9th Willow instagram, so much so that in my psychology exam on Tuesday I must have lost a good 5 minutes just thinking about it, so I kind of had to buy it straight after. I feel like some kind of hippie/fairy wearing it, which is probably my favourite feeling in the world. It's designed by the same girl who does Freak of Nature too, so I'm not at all surprised I fell in love with it.

And as for these shoooooes, there isn't much to say except that they are an amazing holographic magical DREAM of shoe, and I kind of can't get over how great they are. HUGE love to Desire Clothing for these.



shanghai photo diary

Spent a dreamy two weeks in Shanghai staying with my family, such a vibrant and exciting city that I've absolutely fallen in love with (the super cheap and amazing food definitely helps!)




dress c/o Fashion Union

There's an unholy amount of green in these photos I know, I guess I'm having a late St. Patricks day or something. I'm not normally one for green, in fact I think I don't even own more than 5 green items of clothing. I really love this dress though - anything swingy and chiffony is perfect to me. 
Also I'm going to China next week, for a fortnight! So so so excited, prepared to take about 100000 photos whilst I'm there! 



red brick

 coat - mango, dress c/o Poppylux, shoes - new look

Purely coincidental that my shoes and makeup matched this lil' wall! This dress is from Poppylux and is unusual in that it is one of the very very few patterned dresses that I own - patterns are somewhat a rarity for me. It's not that I dislike them, it's just hard to find ones that suit me and don't blind myself and everyone that walks past me, but this one's a winner.



march obsessions

1. This long (calf length!) black kimono is possibly the best thing I've bought this year - £6!!!! God I love H&M, it is quite literally a treasure trove.

2. I can't even count the amount of cocktails I've bought this past week. Too many. But pink mojitos cannot be beaten.

3. This coat is the single most amazing piece of clothing ever, I can't decide if I want to wear it or hang it on my wall and gaze at it all day.

4. Flume's album is the soundtrack to my life at the moment, plus every single Flume remix is rad (their remix of Disclosure's You & Me especially)

This month seems to be wonderful so far, like everything is really going my way and people are being almost suspiciously nice, I love it. Plus I've got a job interview tomorrow so FINGERS CROSSED




dress - c/o Chi Chi clothing,

Some clothes look so much better on the hanger, and leave me disappointed and frustrated within five seconds of trying them. This dress is not one of those. It is instead the type that in flat, folded up, or even photograph form doesn't do justice to just how pretty, princessy and amazingly comfortable it is (elasticated backs are truly a gift from heaven.)
As the least graceful/balanced person ever, I am endlessly stepping on and tripping over long skirts/dresses/anything, but the lovely feeling you get when walking around in something maxi  is worth the potential cuts, bruises and rips. 




floral playsuit - c/o fashion union

There's something about teddy-style playsuits which is just so adorable, this one was a gift from Fashion Union which I am rather in love with, I feel like it sort of matches my hair/room well! I'd never heard of Fashion Union prior to receiving this but gosh some of the clothes are lovely, there's one long tartan jacket in particular which I am going to save up for. Am a big fan of long, slim fitting jackets at the moment, as well as slip dresses and silky, underwear-looking playsuits and shorts.



sweet nothings

dress - aztral, hat - label lab, coat - mango, boots - doc martens

Managing to be both cute and gothic at the same time is a feat I truly admire in clothes. This dress (that the sweethearts at aztral.co.uk were kind enough to send me) strikes that balance perfectly, like 90's revival Wednesday Addams. Weirdly I feel happier in black than any other colour, I'm not sure what that says about me.
Anyway for those seeking the cute/gothic/generally cool, you can check out Aztral's store or find em on Facebook, and get 10% off until the 31st Jan with 'TAKETEN%'



leopard print

leopard print coat c/o - oasap, trousers - mango, shoes - topshop

So I've broken all but one of my New Year's Resolutions (evidence above), but on the bright side this is possibly all of my favourite things ever condensed into one outfit: leopard print, black, red lipstick, glitter and tailoring (i.e. constantly trying to channel Alexa Chung.)



new year, no money

1. a fraction of my sale purchases. huge love to Mango for selling the black coat of my dreams for £20. and only having my size. some things are meant to be.

2.  went to Victoria's Secret for the first time and it robbed me blind. never has so little material cost so much money and been so worth it. needless to say the wings are not for sale.

3. as if I didn't obsess over Alexa Chung enough already. although my expectations for the book and the actual book didn't quite match up, it's still wonderful and great and the cover alone makes it worth having.