What to wear to a Wedding (part 2)

what to wear to a wedding dion lee dress
what to wear to a wedding dion lee dress
what to wear to a wedding dion lee dress

Dion Lee dress (I also love this style!), Chloe embellished heels

Basically breaking all the rules I mentioned in part one; for Luke’s brother’s wedding in the rolling hills of Tuscany, I opted for this little black number from Dion Lee. Admittedly, I spent the better part of three months trying to track down something that a) didn’t break the bank, and b) wasn’t black, and in the end, instinct won out. Black FTW right?

I think we can probably all agree that the tradition of not wearing black to a wedding is a little antiquated; these days, I think you’re more likely to spot a guest wearing an LBD than you aren’t… or at least that’s what I figured as I was in the process of trying to talk myself out of buying this dress while in the changing room. And just for the record, the navy was already sold out in my size, and as far as I’m concerned, a girl can never have too many little black dresses. And I figure, where you’re unsure, getting the ‘all clear’ from the bride is always going to be your best bet, especially if it’s going to be a particularly intimate affair.

I’m fairly certain I can count the number of times I’ve worn anything fitted like this in the last five years on one hand, so if there’s one piece of advice that I think is worth sticking by, I would say: don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone. x

Ballerina

ruby sonnet wrap top cecelia metallic pleated skirt sophia webster loren sandals
ruby sonnet wrap top cecelia metallic pleated skirt sophia webster loren sandals
ruby sonnet wrap top cecelia metallic pleated skirt sophia webster loren sandals
ruby sonnet wrap top cecelia metallic pleated skirt sophia webster loren sandals
ruby sonnet wrap top cecelia metallic pleated skirt sophia webster loren sandals
ruby sonnet wrap top cecelia metallic pleated skirt sophia webster loren sandals

RUBY sonnet wrap top, RUBY cecelia pleated skirt in black (the blush version launches in October ’16), Sophia Webster loren sandals

One of my ongoing resolutions for the past four or five years has been to shake up my wardrobe a little, and I’m predicting somewhat of a seismic shift come Spring time; with a new season comes change, or so they say.

I figure the best way to get the ball rolling is with small changes, and if there’s one thing I can’t seem to get enough of in my wardrobe, it’s the pleated skirt. This metallic beauty from RUBY has definitely upped the ante; it’s just enough out of my comfort zone to feel different while complementing what I wear on the daily. It makes the wardrobe classic anything but basic, and definitely one of the ‘new’ essentials that I think you need in your closet.

Paired with an off the shoulder wrap top – which are so ubiquitous at the moment that they’ve basically become a wardrobe necessity – it’s a little more ballet beautiful than the simple (read: rolled out of bed and threw on a plain sweater) nonchalence I typically go for, but it’s the kind of romantic pairing which has me feeling excited about experimenting with my wardrobe again.

Even though I’m basically still on lockdown until the wedding (which is frighteningly only two and a half months away…), I’m looking forward to branching out and really, truly exploring the boundaries of my personal style.

* The cecelia pleat skirt in blush will be launching this October, so keep your eyes peeled on the RUBY new arrivals section if you’re keen to get your hands on one of these beauties alternatively you can pick it up now in black which is equally stunning!

Florence Photo Diary

mademoiselle florence firenze photo diary italy travel
mademoiselle florence firenze photo diary italy travel
mademoiselle florence firenze photo diary italy travel
mademoiselle florence firenze photo diary italy travel
mademoiselle florence firenze photo diary italy travel
mademoiselle florence firenze photo diary italy travel
mademoiselle florence firenze photo diary italy travel
mademoiselle florence firenze photo diary italy travel
mademoiselle florence firenze photo diary italy travel
mademoiselle florence firenze photo diary italy travel

outfit 1; ASOS pinstripe midi dress, Charlotte Olympia kitty flats, ONA Capri Tote (similar)
outfit 2; RUBY dress (coming out next month), Givenchy sequin heels (similar), Teddy Blake rachel mini bag (I also love this style)

Following the Cinque Terre – a tough act to follow, I might add… – we had four nights in the ancient city of Firenze. Surprisingly, we found ourselves situated extremely centrally in the Piazza del Republicca, a stones throw from the Duomo and a short walk to the Ponte Vecchio and Piazza Del Michaelangelo.

We spent a lot of time wandering the cobblestone streets, and always, always, looking up. Given we were there for Luke’s brothers wedding (which was nothing short of magical – how could it not have been!), we spent a lot of time catching up with family and friends, and exploring the city by foot.

For me, it was all about getting out of the city, into the rolling hills of Tuscany, where the wine is plentiful and the roads are quiet. We set out to the castle of Vicchiomaggio for a wine tasting and explored the nearby village of Greve in Chianti, and for the wedding, there couldn’t have been a more sublime setting that the castle of Vincigliata. Firenze for ever.

I left my heart in Cinque Terre

mademoiselle travel cinque terre italy monterosso al mare
mademoiselle travel cinque terre italy monterosso al mare
mademoiselle travel cinque terre italy monterosso al mare
mademoiselle travel cinque terre italy monterosso al mare
mademoiselle travel cinque terre italy riomaggiore
mademoiselle travel cinque terre italy vernazza
mademoiselle travel cinque terre italy vernazza
mademoiselle travel cinque terre italy manarola
mademoiselle travel cinque terre italy manarola
mademoiselle travel cinque terre italy manarola night

ASOS peplum frill top, Madewell denim shorts, Madewell neck tie, ASOS sunglasses, Olympus PEN E-PL7 Camera

Cinque Terre has my heart, completely and utterly. For a place that I’ve dreamed of going to for years, it really did live up to all my expectations, and then some.

We stayed in a cute little airbnb in La Spezia, a short 6 minute train ride to Riomaggiore, the first of the five towns in the Cinque Terre. For us, this gave us the best of both worlds; easy access to the Cinque Terre while acting as a quiet respite in the evenings.

Arriving in La Spezia on Friday afternoon, our first port of call was Riomaggiore for a light meal. This is the smallest of the four towns – there’s just one main street – and it gave us our first taste of the Cinque Terre, and a hint at what we could expect the following day. If there’s one thing that there isn’t a shortage of, in any of the five towns, it’s a breathtaking view; we spent our afternoon gazing out at the Med while enjoying some much needed Prosecco. During the evening, we headed back to La Spezia to head out for dinner and to wander the streets of this quiet seaside town. We ended up in a very unassuming taverna tucked away in a maze of streets within the town centre – Pizzeria Marechiaro, Via Persio, 75, La Spezia – eating what was one of the most delicious meals that we’ve had during our time in Italy so far.

On our second day, we high tailed it to Monterosso al Mare, the largest of the five towns in the Cinque Terre. The narrow beaches which front the village are lined with colourful umbrellas to rest under after a day in the sun, and the imperfectly perfect pastel coloured houses dot the landscape in every direction. Instead of opting for a proper breakfast, we grabbed some fresh fruit and focaccia from a local grocer to eat on the go, as we wound our way up into the hills to really take in the view. We then picked up a couple of towels and went for a dip in the water, the best way to cool off after hiking the steep streets of Monterosso.

Our next stop was Vernazza, one of the two towns I was most excited to see and also one of the most iconic. If you have the time, hiking between Monterosso and Vernazza is an absolute must. It’s about a two hour hike along what basically constitutes a goat track, laden with steep and winding staircases, but the views are spectacular and I wouldn’t want to have missed them for a thing.

Our final stop of the day was in Manarola, which is where I truly fell in love with the Cinque Terre. Nissan Dorma, a sweet little wine and tapas bar that overlooks the town is the p-e-r-f-e-c-t place to spend the afternoon, drinking, eating, and soaking up that view. Rather than head back to La Spezia for dinner, we decided to spend the evening in Manarola and catch one of the later trains back. We had dinner at Ristorante Da Aristede, which I can’t recommend enough. The fried calamari is excellent, as is the tagliatelle with prawns, eggplant and tomato, with the panacotta to finish.

We ended our time in Cinque Terre on a high note, watching as the sun went down over Manarola, and scattered lights began to flick on in the houses which line the coast.

For the romantic in all of us, these towns will capture moments and feelings that are bound to make your heart swell.

An afternoon in Vernazza

italy cinque terre vernazza travel

The Cinque Terre are definitely a tough act to follow; I’ve never been to a place that is both magical and fills me with such a sense of wonder as these five colourful towns along the Italian coastline. I took this photo just as we were reaching the town of Vernazza, which is possibly one of the most iconic of the five towns, along with Manarola (which is equally, if not more, spectacular). Let’s just say that this view is one of many reasons why I wish we never had to leave…