Politics made easy: Why have protests broken out in Iran?

Iran is an Islamic republic on the Persian (Arabian) Gulf with a population of more than 81 million people. The country holds a rich cultural legacy and is home is home to historical sites dating to the Persian Empire.
However, the current Iranian regime is notoriously oppressive, plagued with human rights abuses, concerns about corruption and lack of freedom and controversy regarding its nuclear program. 
 More recently, Iran has been hitting the headlines due to mass protests, the biggest of their kind in nearly a decade, which began breaking out on December 28th 2017. 
Why did the protests start? 
The demonstrations initially began as small gatherings to protest against a slow economy in Iran’s second largest city, Mashhad as well as a steep rise in food prices across Iran. These quickly escalated into people demanding freedom from the country’s theocratic government (a government in which God is recognised as the supreme civil ruler), with many citizens demanding that both the supreme leader, Ayatollah ali khamenei and the president, Hassan rouhani step down from their positions. Iran’s economy has crumbled over the years and although prices for goods such as food and clothing have continued to rise, unemployment rates have increased astronomically. Young people within the country now face a very bleak future with no jobs and no money. 

Who is leading the protests?

No one is really ‘leading’ the protests which is why observers are so baffled as to how they have spread so quickly, although social media is said to have played a key part in encouraging more people to join in with the protests. Eye witnesses have told local news stations that the majority of protestors seem to be from poorer villages and rural towns, where oppression is surely felt more. 

 

What will happen now?

Despite repots that more than 20 people have been killed due to clashes with security forces and hundreds more have been arrested (with this number set to increase as the protests go on), the government doesn’t seem to be panicking too much about the current situation, owing mainly to the fact that it doesn’t see the protests as a direct threat to its stability. Thus, there has been very little done in the way of quashing the protests. However, if the protests continue to escalate to the point where violence is wide-spread, this could cause serious implications for the political stability of the country, in which case the government may decide to utilise its elite armed forces, known as the Revolutionary guard, to end the protests through the use of weaponry or heavy force.

Will America intervene? 

So far Donald Trump has been quite vocal on Twitter in his support for the protestors, saying in one tweet, “the people of Iran are finally acting against the brutal and corrupt Iranian regime.” However, given his decision in 2017 to place strict travel bans on Iranian citizens entering the U.S, it seems very unlikely that his support will be deemed credible. Meanwhile, the US Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, has called for two separate UN emergency sessions to discuss the situation. Another state official called upon Iran to stop blocking social media footage regarding the protests after it shut down messaging apps to prevent its citizens from informing the outside world about the brutality it was currently facing. 

‘New year, new me’, why your 2018 resolutions need upgrading

Well folks, it’s that time of the year again when our social media pages are spontaneously flooded with thousands of those horrendously annoying “New year, new me” bullshit memes. 

Sorry for the incredibly blunt opening but you know me, straight to the point! 

Now, I’m not normally one to moan about these little things but after years and years of witnessing these endless posts, I feel like my threshold for the inevitable ‘next year is going to be nothing like last year’ memes has really reached its limit! 

It’s not the I disagree with setting yourself goals for the future, on the contrary, I myself do the same thing and I believe it to be of great importance to set yourself goals and to continually strive to achieve them. Ambition is what ensures progress in life. 

But what does bug me is this: why do we wait an ENTIRE YEAR to start implementing these positive changes into our lives?! Why do we wait until 365 days have passed until we decide to give ourselves a kick up the arse and start doing these things we promised we would do last year and the year before that and the year before that?! 

We have an entire lifetime to at least begin to work towards achieving these goals and instead we decide to wait until the very end of an entire year to get started on them, at which point most of us look back at the previous years list of goals and realize we accomplished very little.

Why do we do that?!

Do you want to know what I think? I think the problem isn’t that we are lazy or impatient or too preoccupied with day to day life to get cracking on our goals. I think the problem lies within the goals themselves.

You may disagree but if you browse through those endless memes and posts regarding people’s future plans for the year ahead, they’re all pretty much the same:

Join gym 

Lose weight 

Transform into Victoria Secret Catwalk model 

Find Love of Life 

Make more money 

Save money 

Put said money towards buying house/car/’insert extravagant purchase that society has made you feel like you need to buy here’

These lists are only made worse when there are very specific time restrictions added to them. For example, lose ‘X’ amount of weight by July or save ‘X’ amount of money by October.

Why do we set ourselves these dreadful and unrealistic time limits in which to achieve these dreadful and unrealistic goals?

Okay, so you want to lose weight, that’s great. Why not set it as a goal?

But first, consider the reasoning behind it. Are you losing weight for yourself and your health or are you doing it because you feel pressured to do so by society? Are you planning on losing the weight slowly and surely in a healthy manner or have you put a time limit on it so that you have to starve yourself and spend hours upon hours in the gym just so that you can look good in a bikini when summer comes rolling around?!

You want to save money? That’s great too, we should all be putting a little aside for a rainy day as the saying goes. But what do you want to save money for? Is it for a deposit on a house that’s probably going to take you the next 10 years to save for in the current financial climate? Is it for a flashy new car because you think it will make people respect you more?

Can you see where I’m going with this? Its great to have goals and everything but the reasoning behind said goals is what is most important.

And another thing, making goals is one thing but sticking to them is another…

According to a study by U.S news, approximately 80% of resolutions fail by the second week of February.

FEBRUARY! 

What happened to good old fashioned hard work and perseverance? Well, precisely what I mentioned earlier. Placing ridiculous time limits on our goals does crazy things to our mentality. We live in a world were we are subconsciously programmed to want things now, today, yesterday so much so that we forget to think about the hard work that goes into gaining these things. When we take a look on any given social media site, we see an abundance of images portraying successful, goal-achieving individuals- they’ve got the smoking hot body, the wads of cash, the amazing wardrobe, the booming business, the apartment that looks like an IKEA showroom.- they’ve got it all. And we start thinking to ourselves, “I want that, that’s success and that’s happiness”.

But it isn’t. You’re only seeing half the picture, more to the point, you’re only seeing half the picture that they want you to see. What you don’t see is them going to the gym religiously every day to get the chiseled god-like body. You don’t see them having to sacrifice hours of social time with friends and family to stay back at work and earn that money to buy that house. You don’t see them food shopping at the Tesco’s reduced section so that they afford to buy themselves nice clothes instead.

Its all an illusion and so are these bloody new years’ resolutions!

I apologize for this awfully long rant but I just wanted to flash a bit of light on this subject. Life isn’t a competition and It isn’t just a list of goals, its so much more than that. It’s a slow process which sees us endlessly learning new things about ourselves and the world, it sees us changing, growing and transforming on a daily basis so why not create new years resolutions that are more in line with that?

This year my goals for 2018 are very different to the previous years and there are no time limits on any of them. Instead I plan to achieve them through hard work and learning for the foreseeable future.

If you’ve read this post and thought to yourself “Yes, I do that too and yes, I agree” then I would really encourage you to consider adding some of them to yours too!

  1. Be kinder to yourself and others. Whether that means doing something small like holding the door open for a stranger or doing something greater like donating your time or money to charity.
  2. Listen more, to yourself and others. In this crazy world where everything moves so quickly, I feel like we often forget to actually listen to ourselves and others. Listen to yourself and act upon your own needs, not the needs of society but equally, take a bit of time out to consider the thoughts and needs of others.
  3. Stop worrying about those silly little numbers on the scale- in the grand scheme of things they mean absolutely nothing. Instead, concentrate on feeding your body with the nutrients it needs, drinking more water and exercising regularly but always LISTEN to your body. If you feel too tired to go for a run, don’t. Wait until you have excess energy and then go, you’ll enjoy it much more and will be able to put more effort into it. On the same hand, looking after your body doesn’t mean depriving yourself of certain foods. If you want to eat chocolate, eat it, just don’t go too crazy and aim to achieve balance when it comes to what you feed your body.
  4. Instead of trying to change your self, change your self-perception and practice self-acceptance. Us women (and men!) love to look at others for inspiration and there’s nothing wrong with that if its done in a healthy manner. Its human nature, animal instinct to want to fit in and look and act like everyone else. But when we start to look to others for guidance and begin making radical changes to ourselves in a bid to be accepted by society, there’s something wrong. In doing so, we are merely separating ourselves from our real identity and real selves. Whether it’s on a small scale like looking at the way certain women dress and then styling ourselves accordingly, even if its uncomfortable. Or if its on a grander scale where we are literally getting our lips blown up to the size of small balloons because Kylie Jenner says it makes us more beautiful. Don’t do it! Like I said before, there’s nothing wrong with taking inspiration from others but never lose site of your individuality and identity. There is only one of you!
  5. Practice gratitude. Life has become so much of a competition to achieve happiness, abundance and wealth that in the race to own all of the above, we often forget to appreciate what we already have at this very moment. Remind yourself EVERY DAY to be thankful for the things you already have. Whether that means just appreciating out loud the fact that you have a roof over your head when so many other don’t, or whether its just waking up in the morning and writing a list of all the things we have in our lives that we are thankful for. Whatever it is you are grateful for, don’t forget to give thanks for it. 
  6. Forgive others for their mistakes but most importantly, forgive yourself. You are not perfect, none of us are. We all make mistakes, we all screw up, we all learn from those mistakes and change and grow. That’s just life. Instead of berating yourself for mistakes you made in the past, be thankful that you made them because you learnt from them and its made you a better person. On the same hand, stop hating yourself for not being perfect, or for not being at the stage in life that you thought you would be by now. It will all come with hard work, time and self-acceptance.
  7. Set smaller more achievable goals instead of placing time limits on everything.
  8. Try learning a new hobby/craft that puts your imagination and creativity to good use. We are constantly taking in information, whether that’s through the internet, watching TV or listening to the radio. It’s a never-ending cycle of absorbing and processing. But less and less of us have a creative output for all of that information overload, which can lead to a rather cloudy and oppressed mind. Having a hobby like writing or art or dance can work wonders for your mind and body. Trust me on this one.
  9. Invest in your spiritual growth. At the risk of sounding like some yoga-living hippy here (although I most definitely am partial to a bit of yoga), spiritual growth is really at the core of what life is all about. And yet, the majority of us take no time out of our busy schedules to invest in it. Meditation is something that I firmly believe should be integrated into our day to day lives so that we can achieve balance and really get in touch with ourselves. Buy yourselves a few books or watch some videos on spirituality and start practicing it now, today!
  10. Give love. I’m not suggesting you go out on some mad shagging spree here, although if you’d like to and it makes you feel happy then be my guest.

 

Happy new year!

Love Kate 

x

Faux fur love two

Happy November guys! Where has this year gone? I feel like this has been one of the fastest years of my life and I haven’t even done that much!

As you can probably tell from the photos, its pretty darn cold here in London now. This pretty rapid change in weather only really started about a week ago but my god has the temperature drastically dropped! I LOVE wrapping up in stylish outfits for winter but I really am no good at all when it comes to dealing with the cold and Im already witnessing the affect it is having on my skin and hair 🙁 They always get really dry around this time of the year so if any of you have any recommendations for keeping everything nice and moisturised, let me know! 

Anyway, after the weatherman decided to tell us all it was going to be colder than Russia last week, I went into full-blown emergency mode and rushed off to camden market to see if I could get myself a fur coat (faux of course)! Up until last year, I had never been a fur coat kinda gal but then again, I’d also never witnessed winters as cold as they are in London. Last years trusty faux fur coat (which you can see more pictures of here) practically became a life saver for me when the temperature decided to drop to iceberg level. So this year I thought I’d upgrade the old fur and change it up a bit with the colours, opting for a cream/off-white number instead, I have no idea why I decided on cream/white but I did. Sometimes I just have these random epiphany moments and I just roll with it. √

What do you guys think? 

I can honestly say that wearing this coat is like wrapping yourself up in a thermal blanket- I am  TOASSSTYYYYY. I also got it for an absolute steal may I add. 

So far I have teamed it with my trusty Dr Martens, my knee high boots and my vans trainers and it seems to pretty much go with everything which was a pleasant surprise! There are some FURMAZING coats and jackets in Camden at the moment so if you’re living in London or visiting soon, I would definitely recommend taking a look and don’t forget to negotiate on the price a bit if you can! You could well walk away with a bargain like yours truly. 

Faux Fur Coat- Camden Market 

Jeans- Primark 

Boots- Dune 

Baker boy cap- H&M (sold out, similar here

The Knee-Highs

Hey guys and gals! 

Like I mentioned in my last post  I’m trying extra hard to publish new stuff every week! Lets hope I can stick to it for a while at least! 

I just want to say that my thoughts and prayers go out to all those who suffered through hurricane Irma last week, I wish you all a speedy recovery, such a terrible time. 

On a lighter note, the sun made a rare appearance last week so me and my boy frantically races to my favourite park in London, Battersea to grab a few snaps of ME NEW BOOTS!

I have been pining after a pair of knee high boots for almost 2 years but never had the courage (they are EXTREMELY SEXY IMO!) or the money to buy them (if I’m being honest!). But my lovely man managed to hunt down this incredible pair for me recently (he really is the best!) and I am absolutely in love with them! 

They are super soft suede with adjustable strings at the back which means they sit perfectly just above the knees. The heel isn’t too big either which means I can actually walk in them because I am terrible at walking in heels! Is is just me or does anyone else watch other women in awe as they strut around effortless in 6-inch stilettos?! 

As you can probably tell, the wind decided to thrust itself upon us mid-shoot so apologies for the crazy messy fringe! I got a new ‘bangs’ style cut in a few weeks ago but its an absolute nightmare to keep in place in this crazy weather! 

Anyway, back to the boots! They are unbelievably comfortable, no joke. They also sit extra nicely on the legs when I team them with skinny jeans, something I’ll be doing much more when winter creeps upon us- somehow I think this will be happening very soon. God, I need a holiday! 

 

I’m really loving the old-school retro look lately, think Bridgette Bardot, flared jeans, turtleneck tops- that sorta thing! Being in London Im constantly surrounded by people who are not shy to experiment when it comes to fashion, particularly that vintage look and its so inspiring! 

What do you guys think of the look? Let me know! 

Denim dress- H&M (can’t find it online for some reason, similar here)

Striped top- Asos 

Knee High boots- Dune 

 

The perks of being a wallflower

Hey guys and gals.

It has been a very long time since I have written anything on the blog. In fact, I had almost started to forget this thing even existed if I’m being completely honest. I can only apologise, I just haven’t really been in the right place ‘mentally’ in recent months to sit down and put pen to paper (or more accurately fingers to keyboard).

Nonetheless, I decided today would be the day that I finally broke out of my cycle of procrastination and un-productivity and did something more useful than searching for autumn/winter fashion trends on Pinterest and googling Emily ratatowski’s diet plan (apparently she eats baked goods and does no exercise except for yoga incase you’re interested- total bullshit, also, incase you’re interested).

Instead I wanted to share with you a big lesson I have learned (and also struggled with) since moving to London in October of 2015.

So, most, if not all of you are probably aware of or have read the book `The perks of being a wallflower’ and if you haven’t read the book then you may have watched the subsequent movie adaption.

If not, here’s a VERY brief summary

Basically, the novel centers around an extremely shy and introverted young boy as he attempts to navigate his way through society and thus integrate himself into the big wide world.

For me (and I could well be completely off-key here so don’t judge me), the resounding theme or ‘message’ of the book is centred around the innate need for us humans to overcome shyness and its accompanying attributes and instead attempt to stand out from the crowd, or at the very least try to blend into it.

Congratulations if you’re still following me here.. and please continue to stick with me because there is a valid reason behind me talking all this nonsense.

When I moved to London those (almost) 2 years ago, I had never considered myself to be a ‘wallflower’. In fact, I actually thought of myself to be quite the opposite.

I had travelled to some of the furthest regions of the world (mostly alone), something I know many young females wouldn’t even dream of doing. I had packed all my bags and relocated to the other side of the world more times than I can remember, I had gained a wealth of independence and pretty much lacked any form of self-doubt- if I wanted to do something, I did it. Simples. On top of this, I had successfully blagged my way into a job working as a radio presenter, not a career move you would typically associate with the ‘shy, introvert’, unconfident type.

Life had thus far been pretty easy for me. I had somehow managed to bypass that terrible stage of worrying about what other people thought of me, whether or not I was liked, if I did or didn’t fit in. Instead, I pretty much lived for myself, did my own thing and my biggest challenges in life revolved mainly around what I was going to eat for dinner.

However, within a matter of weeks of settling down into my new life in London, I suddenly started to notice little thoughts creeping into my head that had somehow never managed to make it past that sponge-like barrier before.

Walking along Oxford street one day, I was confronted with the image of what can only be described as a pre-pubescent Billie holiday-lookalike wearing what seemed to be a bin bag and a pair of bright white adidas trainers.

After my brain had managed to completely digest all of the above (and after 2 minutes of confusion and laughter), it was as if the fabric draped across my eyes had suddenly been lifted (translated: the wind blew my fringe out the way) and I started to take a proper look my surroundings-  A beautiful 6-foot-tall woman glammed up to the max, effortlessly strutting her stuff in Louboutin’s, a bunch of eclectic looking indie youngsters rocking oversized glasses and Levi Jeans, carrying big satchels emblazoned with the words `London College of fashion’. A group of 20-something guys with moustaches so perfectly pointy they made Salvador Dali look like an amateur. And there was me, perfectly painted into the background of this glorious picture- a grey, fading splodge on this piece of art. 

I know a lot of people (particularly those who don’t live in London), would have viewed this sight rather indifferently and instead exclaimed ‘what a bunch of weirdo’s!’ before continuing on with their daily routines in the ‘real world’. 

But that isn’t how my mind chose to operate. Instead, I looked at myself in the reflection of a shop window, dressed in my lifeless grey denim jeans and my plain white tee, hair scraped back in a bun, traces of yesterdays spaghetti bolognaise still hanging around the corners of my mouth and thought to myself, ‘My god, I am really boring’.

This was the first time (and nowhere near the last) that I considered myself to bear a striking resemblance to a wallflower.

The problem with London and, in fact, most major cities throughout the world is that they are so over-saturated with millions of other human beings who are all trying to stand out from the crowd that inevitably, 80% of them end up blending right into it. And I had unknowingly become part of that 80%. 

And I’m not just talking in terms of fashion and physical appearance. If there’s one thing I’ve noticed since moving here its that confidence is everything and if you don’t have an insane amount of it (to the point that’s its almost arrogance, in some cases) you literally will not get anywhere. Whether that ‘anywhere’ is making new friends, getting a job or simply being noticed by passersby. If you don’t have the confidence to say ‘look at me, here I am, I deserve to be acknowledged because I’m not like everyone else’, you will never progress, no matter what you’re trying to do.

Believe it or not, I don’t actually like standing in front of a camera and having my photo taken- in fact, if I’m out at a nightclub or special event with my friends (a VERY rare occasion) or at a family gathering (another rare one) I will actively do my best James Bond impression and dive-bomb out of the way if I see the flashing lights of a camera heading my way. Why? Because I, along with millions of other women across the globe, have my own deep-routed insecurities and I really cannot be arsed to stare those insecurities dead in the face when my friends/family start uploading those pictures onto every social media site known to mankind.

However, I realised that this mentality wasn’t going to get me anywhere in the big wide world, let alone in London. Take for example my blog. When I first began publishing posts, I had a very small collective of family and friends who would read it. That was great but I wanted it to be so much more than that, I wanted my thoughts and my opinions to be shared on a much larger scale and thus I NEEDED to start posting stuff that would do just that. And so I began facing up to my insecurities and prancing around awkwardly in front of the camera, modelling random bits of clothes that I had found crushed at the bottom of my suitcase in the hope that a younger populous would start taking notice. Did they? Yes, they did. Why? Because I did something different, I pushed aside that lack of confidence and that constant security of being a wallflower and did something that would get me noticed.

And Im not alone in recognising that sometimes in order to get ahead of the game, we need to overcome our insecurities and push through our mental boundaries, perhaps doing something out of the box or extraordinary. Take Chris Putnam  for example. Once more of the shy and retiring geek-type, Chris was inspired to do something off-the-chart ambitious to land himself a job at Facebook after the social media giant visited his university campus in 2006. Realizing that hundreds of his fellow students would now be clogging up the inbox of Mark Zuckerberg begging for a job, Chris decided the easiest way to catch their attention was to… hack them. Yes, you read that right. Putnam created a viral worm that spread throughout thousands of profiles, making them look identical to those of MySpace. Did his elaborate plan work? You bet it did! Before long Facebook had called Putnam demanding he explain what he had done and by the end of the conversation, they had offered him a job interview.

I’m not suggesting that simply overhauling your wardrobe and dressing in 6-inch neon platforms and a space suit is suddenly going to get you noticed by the future love of your life. Nor am I implying that you need to do something crazy and irrational in order to nab yourself that dream job. That’s just wishful thinking and furthermore, might actually land you in a slightly troublesome position with the authorities.

But what I am saying is this:

Yes, being a wallflower does have its perks- it’s a safe place to sit, admiring and absorbing the crazy beauty of society whilst perked on your little wooden fence. It allows you to feel comfortable and secure, knowing that you don’t need to compete or prove your self worth to anyone but you. You don’t need to dress a certain way or look a certain way or act a certain way to please the masses, in fact, you don’t really have to do much of anything… but as a consequence, it also wont get you anywhere. In fact, being a wallflower is effectively giving society permission to push you into the background of life’s happenings. That may be a pill hard to swallow but it is (sadly) the world we now live in as a competitive, technological and internet-obsessed society.

If you really want to stand out and perhaps slowly but inevitably get somewhere, you’ve got to put yourself out there. You have to let go of those fears, insecurities and those wallflower tendencies, stop questioning ‘what if?’ and ‘what will happen?’ and instead just do it. Dress the way you want to, no holds barred, be as confident as you like and if not, fake it till you become it.

And if people start telling you that you’re weird or arrogant, or mentally unstable (and they will, believe me) then you look over your shoulder as they’re tip-toeing at snails pace behind you whilst you’re on the fast-track to life success and say “ F*** you, me and my leather-bound moon boots are onto bigger and better things”.

 

 

 

 

Femme Vibe

Don’t mind me, just doing my thannnnnnng!

What a turn around from last weekends weather in London, today is miserable and grey! Of course, its making me want to go on holiday (it always does!) so Ive spent the last hour searching for the best sunny locations to visit in July/August. If you guys have any suggestions of somewhere beautiful thats great for budget travellers, let me know!

I picked up this fab little ‘Femme Vibe’ t-shirt from H&M last weekend at the bargain price of £5! I really don’t have many slogan t-shirts (in fact, this is my first one) and I’m also lacking slightly in the ‘basic tee’ department too so I had a huge smile on my face when I saw this! I did have to buy it in a few sizes up though as they had sold out really quickly.

I paired it with my gingham midi skirt which was actually quite a new thanngg for me as I literally NEVER get my legs out! We all have those parts of our body that we’re not overly comfortable or happy with and for me its definitely my legs. But I have been trying more and more lately to embrace and accept my flaws and believe me, there are plenty of them! 

I love seeing other women who are so confident and full of self-acceptance because I know just how difficult it is to be full of self-love in a world that just loves to hate. Do you ladies (and guys) ever feel the same? 

Anyway, its just a quick one from me as I have lots to do in preparation for my trip home next week for my 27th birthday! I can’t believe I’m nearly at the big 2-7, it feels like just yesterday that I was 18, thinking that at 27 i’d be a full-fledged grown up! So not the case! haha!

Kate 

x

 

Femme Vibe t-shirt- H&M (sold out, similar here) 

Midi skirt- New Look

Bag- Primark 

Espadrille Shoes- ASOS

Sunglasses- Oliver Peoples 

The London Look

As I write this post the clouds are slowly starting to roll in over London- a complete turnaround from last weekends glorious sunshine! Oh well, you can’t have it all!

After a pretty hectic week at work, I thought I would try and utilise my day off to update the blog! It has been a while but I’ve been finding it hard to make time to write a post lately with so much going on!

Anyway, back to last weekends amazing weather! We decided to make the most of it and headed off to Chelsea to enjoy some sunshine and shopping (two of my favourite things) and so I thought what better occasion to whip out my new culottes from H&M?! 

 

I have to admit that I was about dubious to try out the whole culottes trend when it first began to hit the high streets. As a more bottom-heavy woman, I have to be very particular when it comes to finding the right trousers/jeans as it can sometimes leaving me looking very oddly proportioned. Therefore, I tend to avoid anything wide cut or flared however these culottes give a great, seamless shape. I think this is owed mainly to the the face that they are high waisted (and of course an elasticated waist always helps!).

They are SUPER comfortable and light which was perfect in the intense London heat (it always seems to be 10x hotter in the city), allowing me to feel as if I was walking around visually naked! (albeit with less strange looks from passersby) 

If you haven’t already nabbed yourself a pair of culottes, I would highly recommend that you do! Not only are they super comfy but they are one of those incredible pieces that can be dressed up or down which makes them perfect for any occasion! I went for something halfway in the middle on this occasion as you can see. 

P.S how amazing are my new espadrille wedges from ASOS?! They are THE most comfortable heeled shoes I have ever owned and were an absolute bargain at just £20!! 

Culottes- H&M

Bardot top- Primark

Sandals- H&M (sold out, similar here)

Espadrille wedges- ASOS

Sunglasses- Oliver Peoples

 

Kate 

x

Western Woman

Hello everyone and happy Wednesday! It’s not like Wednesday is a particularly special occasion for anyone but it is half way through the week which means just two more days until Friday! 

I have finally got round to uploading the last of my Chefchaouen pictures and wanted to share this gorgeous little number with you.   The little black dress has long been recognised as a staple piece in any girls wardrobe but I personally am not a fan of anything too tight-fitting so I decided to opt for a little twist on the old LBD. As you are probably aware by now if you regularly check in on my blog, I am an avid fan of Bardot-style, off the shoulder clothing. Whether its tops or dresses, if if its Bardot, its going in my wardrobe. This fab number was found after a good hour of online stalking through high street brands! I wanted something lightweight and floaty as I know just how hot black clothing can make you feel in warm temperatures (but I just love black too much to change!). 

I ordered it in a size small but I actually could have done with ordering an XS because as you can probably tell from the photos, it’s a little bit loose around the waistline. But never fear! I teamed it up with my amazing western-style silver buckle belt from Missguided which I am absolutely in love with! It gives a real boho chick look to the whole outfit and highlights my waistline (which, by the way, is slightly bigger after leaving Chefchaouen than it was when I arrived!).

Hope you like it as much as I do! 

Love

Kate 

x

Dress- Boohoo 

Sandals- sold out (similar here

Belt- Sold out (similar here

Sunglasses- Oliver Peoples 

Clashing colours

Hello from a not-so-sunny London :/

Despite arriving back in the UK last week, I feel like I am still suffering from some kind of prolonged jet lag which I blame in part on the drastic change in weather. During my week in Morocco it was averaging 25 degrees upwards but sadly upon my return home I have been greeted with nothing but miserable grey weather and rain. 

In a desperate bid to rid myself of holiday blues I quickly took to reminiscing over my holiday photos and realised I still had a couple more outfit to blog about, this gorgeous maxi dress included! 

You’ve probably heard me say this a thousand times but I am a big lover of maxi dresses and I love nothing more than hunting down the perfect collection of maxi’s for the summer months. 

This beautiful off the shoulder number from Choies caught my eye immediately but I was a little bit skeptical about ordering from China as I’ve witnessed way too many funny memes along the lines of ‘what I thought it would look like and what it really looked like when it arrived’. Still I bit the bullet and nabbed it anyway and, despite taking forever and an eternity to arrive, I am a very happy customer!

It is super light-weight and comfortable and was perfect for the warm temperatures in Chefchaouen so I will definitely be wearing it all summer long! The top is elasticated too which makes it perfect for busts of all sizes, so if you’re a UK size 6-10, I would recommend ordering a size ‘S’ like I did. 

If you guys have any recommendations on where to buy some eye-catching maxi dresses for this summer, make sure to give me a shout on my Instagram

Dress- Choies 

Sunglasses – Oliver Peoples 

Sandals- (Sold out) similar here

Chefchaouen, Morocco

If you haven’t been to Chefchaouen before, you are really missing out! Often referred to as the ‘Blue City’, this absolutely beautiful tourist destination is situated high up in the Rif mountains of Northwest Morocco and definitely lives up to its name! Hundreds of bright blue houses- painted by the Jewish refugees who lived there many years ago- are scattered amongst the winding alleyways of this charming little place which I was lucky enough to visit this month. Despite being a popular spot for tourists, I was surprised to find it wasn’t as crowded as I expected which I think may owe in part to the gazillion steps that you have to climb up and down to get a good look of the city. (note to self: make sure to pack comfortable walking shoes if you’re planning on going!)

What to do 

Chefchaouen is one of the most incredible places where you literally can just walk around all day long and still not tire of the scenery. Eating good (and cheap) food, sipping on mint tea and watching the world go by is really what life is about for me and theres no better place to do it than here. Thats not to say thats all there is to this city though. If you’re a hiking lover than I would definitely recommend visiting Talassemtane National Park in the Rif mountains. With 589.5-square-kilometre (227.6 sq mi) of vast green land, it is home to the last of Moroccos threatened fir forests as well as the Atlas cedar, not to mention some incredible birds. The park was created in 2004 and houses some of the smaller villages of El-Kelaâ and Akchour as well the infamous ‘God’s Bridge’, a natural formation of rocks which is shaped like a stone arch. If your legs can make it up the steep hill on the outer ring of the city, the Grande Mosquee, built in the 15th century, is well worth checking out. As is the ruins of an ancient Spanish mosque built in the 1920’s which sits neatly about two kilometres from the centre, overlooking the entire city. 

Where to eat 

Cafe Sofia, located just in front of the Hotel Parrador is rated the number 1 restaurant in Chefchaouen on Tripadviser and has a great menu for a super cheap price! We ate here on our first night in the city and although the food did taste really great, I wouldn’t personally have given it a five star rating. We both opted for meat tagine which was melt in the mouth delicious but sadly the service was a little rude (particular to Moroccan customers) and our meals took ages to arrive. Instead I would highly recommend Bab Kasaba which is one of the many restaurants lining the Kasbah- a busy central area of the city which really comes alive at night. The food here was outrageously tasty- particular their grilled meat platters and the lamb tagine. We managed to cram in what was pretty much a three-course meal for 107 mdh (roughly £8.50 all together) including two of the best mint teas we had! Aladin restaurant situated in the medina is also a great place to stop by if you fancy something other than the typical Moroccan tagine. With a few extra international meals, their menu is slightly higher priced than most other restaurants in the city but if you can get yourself a seat at the very top of the terrace, its well worth it!

Shopping 

You just can’t leave Chefchaouen without picking up a woollen poncho! If you’re visiting in the cooler months like I did then you’ll find loads of these quality hand made garments dotted all around the city however I picked one up from Bazar Hicham, where you can also watch them make it! Aladdin’s Abeula shop is located just north of the town square and is famous amongst locals and tourists alike for its colourful soaps, perfumes, shampoos and homemade oils. You can pick up a whole bag full of natural goodies for as little as £10! To the east of the medina, just before the waterfall begins you’ll find a leather shop run by a local man named Hassan. This is the best place to pick up all things leather- bags, shoes, clothing- you name it, he can make it. If you want something made from your own designs then take a picture of it with you and he’ll be happy to make it for a good fee (bargaining is recommended of course) however you might want to book it in wth him a few days in advance to make sure he has enough time to make it! In the eastern corner of place el Makhzen you’ll find a lovely spot for blankets, scarfs and handmade crafts which can be bought at fixed prices as well as numerous jewellery stores (if you love silver necklaces then you’ll love this little line of shops!).

Where we stayed 

After some thorough research (and I mean, crazy mad thorough research) we realised we had probably left it a little bit late (as usual) to find somewhere that would exceed all our expectations in terms of accommodations. Honestly, I could not believe just how quickly hotels and riads were getting fully booked in the weeks leading up to our trip. Luckily we managed to find a room at a lovely little place called Casa La Palma which was nestled neatly just 2 minutes underneath bab el mahrouk- one of the entrances to the city which is very high up in the mountains! The hotel owner Carlos is absolutely lovely and knows everything there is to know about the city and was quick to recommend things to do and places to eat. The rooms are slightly small but thats the charm of staying in a riad, but it was all about the views for me. If you stay here, make sure to get yourself up onto the roof terrace early in the morning or at sunset, those views over the city are breathtaking in every single way!  To find out more about hotel Casa La Palma, click here.