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Macmillan Move More Campaign

3 Sep

Macmillan Cancer Support recently launched their ‘Move More’ campaign which aims to dispel the myth that you should rest following cancer treatment. It’s really important to stay active to reduce fatigue, anxiety and stress as well as looking after your heart, bones and reducing the risk of getting a blood clot.  Historically, doctors always advised patients to rest during treatment but this has changed, they have seen the importance of light exercise to improve energy levels and muscle strength. Jo Brand, Joanna Scanlan and Peter Capaldi have joined forced to make a little promotional video to launch the campaign:

Having supported close friends and family through cancer, I know chemotherapy is horrendously draining and often leaves you feeling very weak and tired. It can be so difficult to just motivate yourself to get out of bed, but having a goal to do a tiny bit of exercise such as climbing the stairs, walking or gardening can make a huge difference. You should, of course, always speak to your doctor of physiotherapist before undertaking any exercise. Here are my ten little things to help you move more:

  1. Music always helps me move, not to mention it always improves my mood.
  2. Rope in friends and family, it’s much more fun to be in it together.
  3. Start with small sessions of exercise and build up your activity over time.
  4. Nintendo Wii is great for aerobic exercises as well as gentle flexibility exercises like yoga and pilates.
  5. Set goals to keep you motivated and keep your eye on the prize.
  6. Get outside to cycle or walk short distances while it’s still nice outside.
  7. Activities like dancing and hula hooping make exercise fun rather than boring.
  8. Go blackberry picking, not only a great way to spend an afternoon but then you have a great excuse to make crumble.
  9. Hang out with children – take them to the park, or dog sit your friends new puppy
  10. Wearing the correct clothing is important to ensure your skin can breathe and you’re kept cool.
With the last point in mind, I just wanted to share some inforation about Debenhams‘ new women’s sportswear range, XPG (cross performance gear) by Jenni Falconer, which combines performance and style in a feminine way. As a keen marathon runner, Jenni knows the importance of combining breathable, lightweight fabrics and reflective fabrics with great design. The collection of 35 pieces in sizes 8-16 and is priced from £14-40. 

Happy first birthday, B by Ted Baker

1 Aug
 The B by Ted Baker lingerie range has caught my eye in Debenhams on more than one occasion, mainly due to the pretty, eye-catching prints that are Ted Baker’s signature. The brand recently celebrated their 1st birthday and I jumped at the chance to meet the lovely Debenhams PR team and check out the range up close.

The charming collection comprises of lingerie, sleepwear and loungewear. The lingerie collection has everything from multiway to balcony and plunge bras and of course the matching knickers. It has something for everyone, if you prefer simpler pieces in black and cream you won’t be disappointed and if you’re a brighter, pattern girl then you really can’t go wrong with the cute, girly prints. The collection has a real luxe feel as the fabrics and lace are really gorgeous and there are little details which show that it’s a step up from regular high street lingerie collections. The sleepwear/loungewear collection is equally appealing, with everything from pyjamas, chemises, camisoles and kimonos in the same pretty prints

Debenhams app review

22 Mar

Last week, the lovely guys at Debenhams invited me to meet with them and preview their new Nokia and Android fully transactional shopping apps. This was hugely exciting for me, as some of you may know I work in e-commerce so I’m a little bit of a tech geek. The iPhone app which was launched last year was hugely successful, with 360,000 downloads and sales of over £1m in 5 months, proving that m-commerce isn’t just an emerging idea or fad. Both apps are available to download now, which makes Debenhams the first high-street store to offer apps for all smartphone platforms. Despite the popularity of iPhones, Android is actually the most popular mobile platform in Europe now so it’s great that Debenhams are making their app available to all.

Smartphones have revolutionised many aspects of our lives, not least fashion. With magazine, styling and blogging apps as well as shopping apps, we’re spoilt for choice. But I think very few shopping apps actually add value to the overall shopping experience in comparison to using a mobile-friendly site. Some apps aren’t even transactional which is rather frustrating and pointless. What impressed me most about the app is all of the extra features which they’ve tied into one comprehensive little package. As well as a store finder, wish list, gift finder and video area, the app also has a barcode scanner which is super useful for enriching the in-store shopping experience by allowing customers to access reviews, check prices, create gift lists in store as well as looking at full product ranges. It also has a QR reader which is used for scanning those funny square barcodes which are being featured in their print advertising. 

For me, the app had everything you could possibly need or want to shop with. By far, the best thing about it is that it offers a truly seamless online and offline shopping experience which is what most retailers get wrong. This app has definitely raised the bar. 

The apps are available to download now through the app store or here

Debenhams Edition pop-up shop

9 Feb

This evening the lovely folks at Debenhams invited me over to their new pop-up shop to have a special preview of the gorgeous space as well as the Preen and Jonathan Saunders diffusion lines and Jonathan Kelsey accessories line. The Edition ranges officially launch in Debenhams stores on Monday 14th February, but if you’re extra keen you can snap up designer pieces at highstreet prices tomorrow at the pop-up store located at 8 Newburgh St, just off Carnaby St. 

Jonathan Saunders collection

I think this may have been my favourite collection. Unlike a few diffusion lines that I’ve seen over the years, Jonathan has kept the same design aesthetic and signatures of his main line and translated it into a highstreet range without compromising his vision. My favourite pieces were grey jersey tops and maxi dresses covered in soft chiffon. The perfect collection for summer, light, floaty and effortless. There were also some sharply tailored pieces in white and beige. 

Preen collection

I loved the detailing in this collection: pleats, fringing, quilting, sheer fabric and exposes zips set against a colour palette of neutral shades to accentuate the design details. There are some real stand out pieces, both the buttersoft leather jacket and crisp trench coat are sure to be sell outs. 

Jonathan Kelsey

Best summed up by the man himself in a special quote just for me! “My first footwear designing role was for Jimmy Choo where I learned a lot about creating iconic shoes and developing my signature style, which this collection delivers, while offering something new and directional to you, the Debenhams customer”. 

H! By Henry Holland Press Day

1 Jul
A couple of weeks ago, I was lucky enough to be invited to Debenhams flagship store on Oxford Street for champagne, cupcakes and a sneak peek into Henry Holland’s high summer collection for Debenhams. This is his second collection for the fashion-forward department store, after the huge success of his initial Spring collection. To my surprise, they pretty much had all of my favourite bloggers there at the same time, including Carina from Carina 100, Amy from Wolf Whistle, Selina from Flying Saucer and my most favourite lady Fiona from Save Our Shoes.

The whole Personal Shopping section of the store was ours to go through two rails of the very floral collection, along with loads of changing rooms to try things on. I absolutely loved all of the florals, especially on one of the bralets and a pair of shorts. Henry was also feeling military, with lots of khaki and denim featured in the collection as well as his signature statement tees. I don’t normally do prints, but his crazy bright florals were far too amazing to ignore, so when I was told we can take two pieces home I chose these amazing floral shorts and matching bralet. And I may just wear them together for Amy and Fi…Kidding!

Overall, I thought the collection was gorgeous. The price points were fairly low and the quality wasn’t bad. Some pieces felt they were a little young though, I felt the same with the Spring collection. What do you think of the collection? Has anything caught your eye?