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Thursday, 29 August 2013

Marks & Sparks



Good old Marks & Sparks.

I haven’t bought much from them in years but this year I’m feeling the love. They're definitely having a moment.

They came out with a rather gorgeous looking camel coloured coat last month. Poof. All sizes gone just like that. Took me ages to track one down and when I did, I didn’t buy it only because one side didn’t fit as nicely as the other. But who’s to say another size 8 wouldn’t have been just perfect? Or maybe I’m a little wonky? And even Grazia gave it a mention. Means it was fashion worthy. Let’s move on.

I also saw a rather fetching leopard print coat which I also had to track down in my size but track down I did. I walked round the store with it before I put that back too. Why? It looked good, it fitted well but leopard is leopard and leopard coats aren’t really me - believe me I’ve tried. However, this is actually a great coat for anyone who wants to do leopard print without the bulk of a furry one (been there, tried it on, scared myself, put it back). So a good coat but not as good as the camel one -  Grazia hasn’t mentioned it ... yet.

But don’t feel sorry for me - I came out a winner. I saw a lovely navy coat just as I was hanging back the camel coloured one. 

M&S Navy Coat (keeps selling out online so no link)


I tried it on and Ben who was with me at the time nodded his approval. I'm not saying that I take fashion direction from a 7 year old boy all that seriously but approval is approval and I don't need much encouragement. If I’m being honest, I did think it was probably going to wing its way to the returns desk the following week but when I got home, every time I tried it on, it just felt right. Right enough to take the tags off and to get the sleeves altered. And guess what else? Grazia are loving the M&S navy peacoats too. Yusss!

Now this is going to be of no help to man or mouse but I can't provide you a link online as it seems to have just sold out but there are usually some floating around instore. I've learnt from experince speaking as a small person - when you find something that fits - go for it because you'll kick yourself by the time you've made your mind up and it's gone. You have less chance of finding something which fits you perfectly than someone who is an average Joe of 5ft 4 and above, so snap it up and make your mind up at home. I've had this coat in my possession for around 3 weeks now and it's no longer available online, just like the camel one and the leopard one is rapidly dwindling in stock. Get going!

I have to say the M&S coat is a much more comfortable and flattering fit on a small person than any of the Zara offerings which are currently out there. I loved last year's Zara military inspired coats and they have done a similar one this year which I had to try on to see if I fared any better with this year's model. However, just like last year, the arms were quite tight and the buttons are placed wrong for anyone lacking in the height department. So no good for fat armed shorties.




Also, see where the coat ends on the model just below the bum and still a good way above her knees? That coat finishes just above my knee so where the buttons fasten is mid thigh and throws the whole look of the coat out. I just look like I nicked my dad's old coat. And see where the buttons sit on the M&S coat on me to give a more flattering fit? Across my middle so it looks like I actually have some legs. Granted that the styling is slightly different for both coats but both have a nod to the "peacoat" in their design - you've just got to find the one that works for you .... believe me it's not always the one you have in mind which works. You need to think about proportions and go for what flatters even it's a little girlier or a little less detailed  or even from somewhere where you don't normally shop. 


Primark Jumper, H&M jeans, M&S Boots


Anyway, have a nosey in Marks when you're next walking by. You might surprise yourself with what you find there.


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Last note :


  • I sized down to an 8 so the shoulders sit nicely. But I think taller girls could take their normal size and wear a thicker jumper quite comfortably in this. The code is T49/1247 if anyone is interested. If you decide to try, let me know how you get on.

  • I also spotted this gorgeous number. Oh to be a foot taller!

  • Told you I was stocking up for winter. And we're not even out of August yet. 






42 comments :

  1. Great look, boot are fab, will we have you to blame if winter hits us early this year, Rihanna got the blame for rain after umbrella :)

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    1. Yep - you can hold me personally responsible for the dramatic drop in temperatures which will hit our shores next week - I don't mind one jot because I have the wardrobe ready for it.

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  2. Love it! My local M&S in only small........so doubt I will find a gem like that ! Plus the boots are nice also.......I was looking at the boots and they have a biker pair that are very Chanel like and a rag bone look alike pair ..... In black leather and green suede the dark green suede are really nice. Vogue did a spread on their new collection and it looked a amazing then you click the items on their website ...... Oh dear the pictures are awful....... As Kat has said on her blog they need to employ a proper photographer and stylist for their website. Great buy ...... Couldn't imagine you in leopard number.....in your leopard shoes/trainers...yes.....but not a coat.

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    1. I managed to get to an out of town store a few weeks ago and the selection is huge in there. I was in the boots section for ages and still there are pairs in store which I haven't seen on the website yet. I think I was just really surprised because I wasn't expecting much but I wasn't expecting to come out liking so much and so much more reasonably priced and better made than a lot of other regular high street shops. And I agree about the web pictures - they do the clothes no justice and make everything look positively bland. It's why I don't even bother to put any of their pics in - they are undownloadable and what you get is too fuzzy and blurred to be of any use.

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  3. Love this coat! I have a super tacky love for leopard print but never have the courage to wear it out. When I die, people will discover the entire wardrobe from Jersey Shore hidden in my closet. Will have to check out M&S, like you I usually struggle with the sizing.

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    1. Oh that's funny - the entire wardrobe from Jersey Shore. I kind of like leopard print but always feel rather conspicuous in it. I can do a scarf, belt or shoes but anything more and it all gets a bit too much. I do like the coat though and because the colours are muted, if I were to do a leopard print coat - that would be the one.

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  4. Great coat. I've always liked navy as it's a versatile colour and not as harsh as black can sometimes be. I agree with you - there are some lovely items this year in M&S and they are getting plenty of mentions in a a number of magazines too.
    Thanks for your comment and in answer to your question - one interesting tip was about storing clothes - vacuum pack with peppercorns which are apparently the best non-allergic, non-polluting moth repellant! I might just try it!

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    1. I think I've been missing a trick for the last few years but I'm making up for lost time with my current influx of all things blue/navy. I've kind of avoided a navy coat as I've been scared of all the potential fluff which it can attract but this wool mix seems better than some fabrics I've seen out there which are absolute dust magnets.

      And thank you for coming back to me. I've not heard that one before about the peppercorns. I'll remember that when I have to pack the summer stuff away.

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  5. Looks lovely! I'm liking M&S at the moment, fantastic skincare and make up (I can't recommend pur minerals enough, it's brilliant) Conran home, and some great bags and coats! I've just bought the Zara quilted one so no more coats for me unfortunately, otherwise I'd be trying this one. (And the whistles jumper hasn't arrived yet that I mentioned on your other post, will let you know what it's like when it arrives).

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    1. Awww - I was waiting to hear how wonderful the Whistles sweatshirt is. And you sound like you're getting your winter wardrobe together like me. I've never tried Pur Minerals but if the truth be told - I've not tried much cosmetics and beauty products wise. But I'm slowly getting on the band wagon. Better late than never.

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    2. Got the sweater! It's nice but quite boxy, I've sent it back and reordered a smaller size, so if you do decide to get it, definitely size down. Yes I'm trying to get my winter wardrobe sorted. I don't need much to be honest, I'm definitely an autumn/winter girl. It's my spring/summer wardrobe I struggle with. I've lived in turned up jeans and long tees, I don't do skirts or dresses, so I'm glad the season is a changing. :D

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  6. It's a lovely coat. And I'm loving the M&S current ad campaign. However....I can't quite bring myself to walk in there and actually shop.

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    1. I guess it's one of those stores which is regarded as a little "staid" along with Debenhams? Don't dismiss it, it's not a great British Institution for nothing and besides they have a really good food hall if the clothes don't grab you.

      I challenge you to go in there and pick something you would wear. I could actually see you in this but adding your own sexy twist on it. http://www.marksandspencer.com/Collection-Detachable-Peter-Collar-Skater/dp/B002NCDYAQ?ie=UTF8&ref=sr_1_61&nodeId=43091030&sr=1-61&qid=1377806537 .

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  7. Replies
    1. Thank you Selene. You look like you had a lovely time in Scotland. You picked a good year for visiting - the sun was shining for a change.

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  8. My word Sue.....what a fabulous coat! Truly gorgeous on you! I have been eyeing up the pea coat style too, however after doing a reckie on my winter coats this morning I fear divorce could be on the cards if I buy another. The hubby is not going to be won over by any of my justifications for purchasing any more :0(

    I have flirted with the idea of a leopard print coat too. Earlier this year I ordered an ASOS leopard print coat that I had seen on Les Anti-Modernes blog but I just felt so exposed in it and very 'look at me', so back it went.

    I love hearing about how you are getting your Autumn/Winter wardrobe together and seeing all your amazing finds!

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    1. I had a look through my coat wardrobe too but one more won't hurt will it? I think this is a throwback to my working days when I used to have a new coat each year. These habits are really hard to break and I'm not sure I want to break them and besides you need coats for the school run. No one can see what you're wearing underneath so the coat is all important.

      And you went for the ASOS leopard one did you? I heard good things about it but these coats are so hard to get right. And you also have to have the confidence to wear them well.

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  9. Great coat, so classic, I want one!

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    1. You put your finger on it. Classic. It's going to be one of those coats which comes out every year.

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  10. Stunning coat Sue, it's perfect on you!! I'm starting to think of winter too but it's boots I'm obsessed with at the mo! X

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    1. I'm sort of boots done but I still like to look. Still looking at Ash ones?

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  11. Have you had a look at the wide collar pea coat on Topshop? I tried it on the other day (in a size 14 though..) and I really loved it, it's of reasonable quality, and a good price at 75 GBP.

    Of course this one looks good on you too, but, you know, in case you were looking for an alternative..

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    1. Hi Jamie, I saw the Topshop one online and the styling is good but I think I'm happy with the one I've got. I suit the slightly shaped waist more and the material and finish is really good for the price as well. The fabric has a slight weave in it which makes it nicer than a straight flat fabric which I find I always have to de-fluff before I walk out of the door. Have you got the Topshop one on order? The design on that one has your name all over it.

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  12. Hi Sue-fabulous choice-you can't beat M&S when they're on form and the style, colour and cut is just perfect for you and looks lovely on! Have a great weekend xxx

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  13. PS-are those boots from last season, I'm sure I've got these ones-mine have a couple of buckles on the side!! xxx

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    1. Hi Sharon, M&S certainly seem to be on form this year. The boots are this season - I'm sure they churn out similar year to year. You will have to feature yours.

      And have a great weekend! If you find another Chanel cardigan just like that in a charity shop - don't blog about it. I will be insanely jealous.

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  14. I love this coat! I got a gorgeous leopard print coat from M&S a couple of years ago - not furry either. I just received the high collar navy jacket from Zara - that's my coat sorted for this year:)

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    1. Ooh. Which one Joanna? You on the navy bandwagon too? We can all be "in the navy". Cue Village People music.

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  15. Great find! It actually looks very similar to my new coat (which I swear I will get around to posting next week). You know I was in love with those Zara short coats last year too, and hanging loose and open they were perfection but I couldn't button them either. Well, I could, but it was not a good look. I think it's pretty hard to find a boxy coat that fits well, it may actually be an oxymoron unless you are a glamazon? In any case, congrats on the great new coat!

    http://www.nomadicd.com/

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    1. I remember the one from last year where it all went to pot as soon as you tried to fasten them. I guess they were designed to be worn open but not very good if you want to keep out the cold.

      And your new coat - I want it modelled please. You and new hair and new coat :o)

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    2. I always forget to come back and check on your comments, you've really got to set it up so we can subscribe to them Sue! And yeah, I'll get that coat up on the blog soon enough. But honestly, it's just still so hot here, I'd have to jack up the AC so high just to take the photo, it feels a little absurd! As for the hair, well, the previous cut was such a mess that this one was a major improvement, but still, it needs some growing out and a touch up in a few months. Hopefully then we'll be somewhere good.

      www.nomadicd.com

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  16. Ah, you have the boots, in black, that I am considering, except in burgundy. Are they comfortable? They do look gooood. Did you see the Autograph leather bags? I am so impressed with some of them.

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    1. I still have the labels on the boots as my mind is not made up yet which is why I haven't said much about them. They are comfy (feel all cushy inside) but I've not been out of the house in them yet. I keep wondering if there is another pair out there for me - they are a little smarter than I would like but the toe shape is absolutely perfect. I'll kick myself if I send them back and they sell out ... because I will know then that I really wanted them.

      And the bags - I didn't look at them that day - I think I know what I want so I'm holding out.

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    2. Oh, you aren't sure about the boots, eh? Well, if they are comfy (yes!) but a bit of a smarter look than you like, they may just work for me, anyway.

      Now, I wonder what bag you are holding out for? I actually don't have a hankering for an exxy bag. Am I misguided and need to see the light?

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    3. I like my boots a little more casual (would love a pair of Rag & Bone ones) and the leather to look a little more weathered but that can be achieved - I have small people who like to stand on my feet for no good reason. And for that reason, I haven't totally made my mind up on them.

      And the bag. I'd like a Longchamp Le Pliage Cuir in black. But I went in the Whistles the other day and saw a lovely pale grey (!!!) bag aswell. So impractical but entirely lust worthy. I'd kill it in two ticks.

      BTW, what's an exxy bag?

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    4. Now, Joanna from Poppy's Style is smitten w the Rag & Bones, and you too. I am planning on buying the Dune Nins and see how I get on with that style of boot. The girls step on my feet all the time. It really hurts when in sandals. My feet will thank me when I move back to boots.

      Ah, nice bag choice! Exxy is lazy for "expensive". Maybe when the girls grow up a bit more, I will want expensive handbags. As it is, they drag mine about at the moment.

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  17. This coat is gorgeous! And you are so right about finding something that is a good fit - definitely snap it up!

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    1. Sometimes the fit is what makes an item rather than the design details. A well fitting item speaks volumes over a beautifully designed item which fits badly. Boy I sound pretentious there but you know what I mean Rosanna.

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  18. I love that coat, but then I always love the pea coat style. I'm hankering after navy this year and have ordered a jacket from Mango. I realised that it's not really a colour I should wear, but am hoping the addition of a scarf will help with any potential problems! M&S are starting to up their game ... definitely a shop I plan to look at once the budget allows

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    1. I have to say, this coat would totally suit you and probably fit you lovely as you're only a couple of inches taller than me. It's one of those items which will come out every year and doesn't date particularly. I like to think of if as classic rather than boring.

      M&S are doing well this year. They even have leather skirts. And yes, I have been looking at leather skirts which worries me a little.

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  19. oh sue that's such a good outfit! everything!

    we have m&s in malaysia and i actually love the underwear section there! there's a limited amount of clothing choices though so i usually leave with a 3 pack of panties and some of that chocolate coated biscuits that i can't seem to find a better version of here.

    i'd my eye on that zara coat but.. toward the end of "winter" it was mid 20s here and i decided it would probably end up sitting at the back of my closet until it was cold enough again.

    steph / absolutely-fuzzy.com

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    1. I used to live in M&S when I was working and single. I used to call in there for my evening meal as I was such a non cooking person. But you are right, they do great undies and their food is good.

      It must be really hard to "synchronise" the fashion seasons over here and the overlap. I take it that Zara are showing winter coats to you right now just as you're heading in to spring/summer.

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