Oktoberfest, Munich

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Last month, I was lucky enough to be whisked to Munich for two days to attend Oktoberfest with Thomas Sabo. Now, anyone who knows me will know how hilarious the thought of me at a beer festival is; I hardly ever drink and the thought of noisy festival goers en masse rather fills me with terror. But because I love Thomas Sabo, and because I know attending Oktoberfest is one of those things every traveller should experience once in their lifetime (but that I probably wasn’t about to go anytime soon otherwise), I jumped at the chance.

So there I was a few days later; swapping two days in the office for the annual Bavarian festivities. Happily, my blog pal Carrie had also been invited; as we’re both premature nannas who don’t drink beer, we knew we’d be sticking together like glue. We tore ourselves away for half an hour after landing to quickly peek at the city, before being ushered off to begin our evening at Oktoberfest. We were greeted by our lederhosen-clad guides and delicious gebrannte mandeln (paper cones of hot sugar-glazed almonds) for a walking tour of the area.

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In truth, I was a bit apprehensive and didn’t know what to expect, but I honestly had the most wonderful time. The atmosphere was celebratory and merry; the air thick with the smell of warm gingerbread and the sound of old-fashioned fairground rides, and I was wide-eyed at the sight of all the charming stalls (selling German snacks and ceramic beer krugs) and almost everyone dressed in their lederhosen and dirndls. Although I was aiming for ‘Bavarian fairytale’ when I got dressed, I only wish I’d found an authentic dirndl to wear to really get into the spirit (we were the odd ones out to not be wearing traditional dress).

After trying our luck at a few games of chance and walking around the whole site (it’s not especially large, so only takes about an hour or two to cover the ground), we headed into Käfers Wiesen Schänke - one of the oldest and grandest beer halls at the festival. It was as though we’d stepped into some kind of German Disneyland; it felt like a perfect version of every traditional stereotype you could imagine. Think jolly oom-pah bands and revelry, gingerbread hearts strung from the wooden beams, and the sound of hundreds of giant beer glasses clinking. At our booth we were greeted by tables groaning with giant pretzels, brotzeit (platters of German sausage, cheese, radish and bread), potato dumplings and strudel. As the night wore on, the cries of ‘Prost!’ (cheers) grew more frequent and everyone began singing loudly and dancing on their benches while we looked on in bemused wonder (I’m sure I would have joined in had I managed more than an inch of my beer…! I’m so very rock ‘n’ roll, I know).

As they say, it certainly was a night to remember!

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Wearing: Endless Rose dress (similar styles at ShopbopSelfridges) // Camilla & Marc jacket (old, but similar styles herehere) // Chanel bag // Zara heels (sold out, but similar here) // Lulu Frost necklace (similar style here) // BaubleBar bracelets c/- (similar style at TheOutnet) // Mimco brooch (old, but I love this similar set) // Lulu Frost crystal ring (on sale!) // Alex Monroe love ring // Jackie Aiche heart ring (similar version here) // ASOS pearl ring.
Beauty: Nars ‘Michiyo’ lipstick // Nars ‘Starscape’ blush // Kevin Aucoin ‘Starlight’ illuminator c/- // Chanel ‘Singuliere’ nail polish.

Love, Miss B xx

Thank you Carrie for helping with my photos (I’m a terribly useless blogger and forgot to pack my camera, so please excuse my less-than-excellent iPhone photos from the evening).


Shopbop Friends & Family Sale

A Girl, A Style _ Fall ShoesPictured: Christian Louboutin leopard pumps (not at Shopbop, but very similar style available at J.Crew and Net-a-Porter) // Salvatore Ferragamo flats // Ash suede boots (also available at Harvey Nichols)

These days, I’m a firm believer in investing in gorgeous wardrobe classics that I’ll (hopefully) wear and love for years and years vs filling my closet as many cheap sartorial thrills as I can manage.  While experience tells me that the designer version is usually a better investment when it comes to the staples in my wardrobe (the shoes, bags, dresses and coats I reach for most days), I hate spending too much on one piece and so always try to shop during store promotions and sales wherever possible.

My favourite is always the Shopbop Friends & Family sale and every October when the sale rolls around, I re-stock my closet with those very wardrobe classics (the perfect little black dress that takes me everywhere from work to a fancy soiree, another silk Equipment shirt that I reach for almost every day for work, a new necklace by Lulu Frost to add to my growing collection), as well as a few few treasures for my house and some essential pieces to take me through the new season (a cosy sweater that will go with everything, the perfect suede ankle boots and some cute leather gloves for winter).

For those of us in the UK, it’s the best time to buy US brands because the discount more than makes up for the import duties so it’s the cheapest you’ll ever find those current season pieces. For everyone else, it’s the only time some of these items ever go on sale (I’m talking about my favourite Karen Walker sunglasses and the classic Self Portrait LBD that you’ll wear season after season) and is so much better than waiting for the end-of-season sales (when only the unwanted pieces remain).

Use code ‘INTHEFAM25′ here to get 25% off just about everything site-wide (the sale is on until from today until Thursday night, so be quick!).

And because I practice what I preach, here’s what I’ve recently picked up from the site or will be adding to my basket today: a few old favourites, some new classics and a few little presents for friends. Happy shopping!

What wardrobe pieces to you invest in? I’d love to hear which staples you re-purchase season after season. 

Love, Miss B xx


Makeup Genius

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As anyone who knows me will tell you, I’m a serial beauty junkie. I love finding new products, I’m always on the hunt for my own beauty holy grail / the perfect version of something (the perfect foundation that stays put all day, the perfect bright pink lip, the perfect eyeliner marker, the perfect nail polish in just the right shade of peachy-pink…), and even though I’ve figured out which looks suit me best and stick to a variation of two or three styles, I’m always up for trying new products and shades.

So when L’Oreal Paris asked me to give their new Makeup Genius app a whirl, I was only too happy to oblige. I confess that although I’m always keen to learn pro-tips to help elevate my everyday routine, I was somewhat sceptical of the premise of the app (the idea being that you ‘try on’ looks and products until you find the shades that suit you best). But honestly, the idea really is genius! The app scans your face and then lets you ‘try on’ any shade from the entire L’Oreal range (magically adding the product exactly where it should go on your face), as well as various looks from the brand’s portfolio; trialling different styles (and products) you might be hesitant to experiment with in real life.

A Girl, A Style _ L'Oreal 2 (small)A Girl, A Style _ L'Oreal 4 (small)In the picture above I’m wearing zero makeup in real life, but the app on my phone cleverly shows how the look / products will look on my face.

For this look (based on ‘Karlie’s Iconic Look’ from the app’s library of looks), I started with my usual base and concealer, adding some contour and depth around my cheekbones, jawline and temples with the L’Oreal Glam Bronze Duo. Next, I traded my usual bronze or plummy eyeshadows for this gorgeous metallic taupe (that seemed to make my green eyes brighter), sweeping it all over my eyelids; blending it a little more in the outer crease and around my bottom lash line for a daytime-friendly take on a smokey eye. I framed my eyes with a flick of Super Liner in ‘Blockbuster’ (an impressively thick and precise marker-style liner) and two coats of ‘Volume Million Feline Lashes’ mascara before finishing with Colour Riche Extraordinaire gloss in ‘600 Nude Vibrato’.

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I tend to stick with a pale peachy gloss on casual days or when I’m in the office (the Colour Riche gloss in ‘Nude Vibrato’ is now one of my everyday go-to products). But if the sky is grey, I’m feeling blah, or I’m wearing black (or I just want an instant desk-to-evening perk-up), I love adding a bold bright lip to lend a little more drama and make my look pop. Here – at the recommendation of Makeup Genius - I just added Colour Riche lipstick in ‘132 Magnolia Irreverent'; (the most perfect fuchsia pink and a new favourite in my makeup bag) to complete the look, and voila!

A Girl, A Style _ L'Oreal 9 (small) A Girl, A Style _ L'Oreal 10 (small)Wearing: Glam Bronze Duo in 101 // Colour Riche L’ombre Pure eyeshadow in 201 // Super Liner in ‘Blockbuster’ // Volume Million Feline Lashes mascara // lip gloss in ‘Nude Vibrato’ // Colour Riche lipstick in ‘Magnolia Irreverent’.

I’d love to know how you all find your perfect makeup looks; do you take inspiration from magazines, suggestions form beauty counters or, like me, just buy all the shades you like until you find the perfect products? I can’t recommend the L’Oreal Makeup Genius app (available to download here) enough for trialling some new looks and helping you to find the perfect shades for your skintone.

Love, Miss B xx

This post is in partnership with L’Oreal Paris. Photos by Beth Morton.

7 Things for the Weekend

A Girl, A Style _ Farmers Market

Hi lovelies! What are you all up to this weekend? I’ve been working all hours on a big project at work, so this week absolutely flew by with little time for play. This weekend I’m happily skipping Fashion Week (honestly, I just don’t enjoy the hectic schedule, the politics of attending shows and filling people’s Instagram feeds with blurry runway pictures…) in favour of catching up with friends and indulging in a few Autumnal traditions.

1. Autumn is officially here! Mark the start of the season with a trip to the farmers market to stock up on new season dahlias, berries, figs and apples and the last of the summer peaches.

2. The mornings are suddenly a whole lot chillier here in Cambridge. I just ordered this cute duffle coat to team with breton strips and ankle boots (though it seems to work with seemingly everything) on off-duty days.

3. I just ordered this for my entryway (because who doesn’t love a brass pineapple?).

4. This Upper East Side New York apartment on my friend Katy’s blog is the stuff of real estate dreams.

5. The NARS x Christopher Kane collection is all pretty great, but this perfect pale pink gloss in ‘Nucleus’ is my favourite (I’ve been wearing it nearly every day this week).

6. I loved this post: “I look like an Engineer”My fiancé is a scientist at Cambridge, and I’m always struck by how few women are in his courses at Cambridge (although it goes without saying that those who are there are brilliant). Like politics (remember my post here?), I’d love to see more women in STEM subjects, and this hashtag is a pretty great start at highlighting the pool of female talent that already exists.

7. Oh good, Mercury is in retrograde again. As usual, Gala Darling has the best guide to getting through it (which honestly is really great advice even if you’re a complete skeptic).

Love, Miss B xx

P.S. In case you missed my latest posts: Back to School (for grownups) + The Perfect Pair