Saturday, 31 December 2011

Wishing you a very Happy New Year!


A New Year's message from my style icon Zooey 
Deschanel (and the gorgeous Joseph Gordon-Levitt)!

Hope you all have a brilliant New Year's Eve and best of luck for the year ahead. Thank you so much for your support in 2011, it's been a fantastic year for the blog and we couldn't have done it without you!


Here's to another 12 months of Chic & Cheerful!

Ruth xx

Thursday, 29 December 2011

How to have a fashionable hangover

The Christmas party season is my all time favourite excuse for getting dolled up: you can get away with so much glamour and no one bats an eyelid! Glitter, velvet, jewel tones and pleats are just a few of my key looks this year - but daytime is a different matter. Rather than huddle under a snuggie, clutching a glass of orange juice, I've decided to take a different tack and rock a very fashionable hungover look, 'hungover chic' if you will.

Now you're probably thinking I've gone a bit mental but hear me out on this one: looking good can make you feel better when you've got an actual sickness so why not apply the principle to self-induced illness too? Next time you're suffering after a night of partying, try these very chic and cheerful tips to make the recovery process a lot easier!

1. Never forget Anna's golden rule: it is always cool to wear sunglasses

(c) Karin Bar
2. Try 2012's beauty trends early by opting for a dewy look

Alberta Ferreti, Spring/Summer 2012
(image from makeupforlife.net)
Use a heavy duty moisturiser to revive your skin and yummy lip balms to perk up your pout. If you just can't go without a bit of eye make up, coat your lashes with a clear conditioning mascara to lengthen and add definition.

3. Autumn/Winter 2011 was all about the statement knit... 

...so make use of that stack of jumpers and snuggle up. If you bypassed the trend before Christmas, visit the sales and pick up some cosy winter warmers - shopping online, of course!

Funnily enough, now is probably the best time to embrace another trend which I've ridiculed quite a bit over the past 12 months: pyjama pants. In the style of a certain tabloid newspaper, I have voiced plenty of horrified opinions on how this trend would surely cause the downfall of Britain and fashion as we know it (well, maybe I didn't go that far but it was probably just as dramatic...). In all honesty thoough, I now get it: trousers that are as comfy as pyjamas? It may be a few seasons late but sign me up!


I picked up this Topshop dalmatian jumper
for £25 in the sales
These three quarter length pyjama trousers
make for easy fashion - Pins and Needles rose
print trousers
, £25, Urban Outfitters
4. Treat your feet
Fleur foot soother teabags, £3, Whittard
Whether you're in heels or flats, a night on your feet can leave your poor toes looking like something out of Embarrassing Bodies. Err...ok, so that analogy may not work (if your toes do look like something on EB, you may want to see a doctor - stat!) but these foot soothers from Whittard certainly do. Simply soak your toes in the peppermint and lemongrass blend then wrap up in soft socks and quirky slippers.
ELLE Eyelash suedette slippers, £5 Topshop
5. Condition, condition, condition
Whether you're a hairspray fiend or just can't live without your GHDs, the only way to make sure your hair stays in tip top shape after an evening of teasing to perfection is to coat it in heavy duty conditioner the day after. My favourite product is Aussie's 3 Minute Miracle Reconstructor deep conditioner. Not only does it smell lush but it will leave your locks in just left the salon quality.

Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Reconstructor
deep conditioner
, £4.99, Boots
And finally...
I wrote a post for food blog Back to the Roots a few weeks back on my perfect hangover cure, a scrumptious wild mushroom broth. This yummy soup is perfect for rehydration and, as it's only 95 calories a bowl, you can have guilt-free seconds too.

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Normal service resumes soon!

Hello lovelies,

Hope you're all having a brilliant Christmas break at the moment. Sorry for not posting as promised over the last week or so, I managed to pick up a nasty bug (and no that's not code for a hangover!). Anyway, normal service will resume from the 29th - I'm taking the day off tomorrow for my birthday - so until then, take a look at this fabulous guide from the Telegraph on what you should be picking up in the sales!

Love xx

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Look like Miss Piggy (in a good way)

Dear Santa, I'd like to be a divine
swine this Christmas please.
What screams CHRISTMAS more than a sparkly nail varnish? That's right, a sparkly nail varnish with an awesome name ('The fresh frog of Bel Air' and 'Divine Swine' are two of my faves). 

The Muppets have got together with OPI to create a surprisingly lovely range of nail varnishes - given that it's The Muppets and all. At only £10.50 each these suitably festive flavours make a pretty neat stocking filler too.

Monday, 19 December 2011

Bargain of the week: £3.99 little black dress

This week's offering comes from H&M. This dress was £7.99 as I started writing this post but has now gone down to just £3.99! WOW.


At the time of writing, only sizes 10 and 12 were left for sale online so you may have to have a scout in-store for this little number - but at this price it's at least worth a look, right? 

Velvet is huge for autumn and cute pleated skirts have been around for a few seasons now. Best of all though, the dress can be worn time and time again with different accessories to create new looks. And on that note, watch out this week for the Chic & Cheerful style guide 'One dress, five ways' featuring this beauty!

PS - Just found out that if you sign up to H&M's e-newsletter you get another 25% off, applicable to sale items.

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Fashion news round-up: 18/12/11

Your guide to the biggest fashion stories of the week
Meryl covers Vogue
This has to be my favourite story of the week: the inimitable actress Meryl Streep (shot by Annie Leibovitz above) is covering the January issue of American Vogue. Her hotly anticipated role in The Iron Lady is already generating a lot of awards buzz - and for good reason too! Just watch this teaser trailer of Streep at work:


Andrej Pejic models push-up bra


Andrej has been the name on everyone's lips again this week following the announcement that he is starring in an ad campaign for Dutch department store Hema - modelling a push-up bra. Apparently Pejic said he'd have a sex change to model for Victoria's Secret but it looks like he didn't have to go to such extreme lengths to bag this one. 

The androgynous model rocks plunging necklines in the ad shots, looking as beautiful as ever. The bras are covered up but certainly prove their claim of boosting two cup sizes!

Elizabeth Taylor showing off the engagement ring given to
her by Richard Burton (image: graziadaily.co.uk)
The Elizabeth Taylor auction sets world record
For a woman who was once quoted as saying "Big girls need big diamonds", her last event on this earth was a rather fitting affair. Bidders turned up in their finest to buy Taylor's coveted collection. Her catalogue of jewels, originally estimated at $30 million, sold for $115,932 million - a portion of which went to The Elizabeth Taylor Aids Foundation. WOW.

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Young Forever jewellery

Make a wish necklaces, £2.50 each; Multi animal pack rings £3; Semi precious red ring, £2.50
In my hunt for cheap, chic Christmas goodies today, I discovered a fantastic little website which sells on trend jewellery for under £5 - in fact, most pieces are on sale for just £2.50. 

Young Forever has this great vintagey, charmed feel to it, perfect for costume jewellery addicts (and last minute stocking fillers too!).

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Christmas jumpers for all seasons

2011 has been the year of funky knits so it's only right that we've had some great Christmas jumpers in high street shops lately. Thank goodness that we've come a long way from dodgy patterns, bobbly sleeves and - I shudder at the thought - The Sweater Shop's annual offerings.

Now I love festive sweaters but kind of have a problem with them.You spend so much only to wear it for a few weeks a year. Not very purse friendly! So instead of wasting your cash on Frosty the snowman or some cutesy penguin this merry season, why not take a look at my guide to some of the best Christmas jumpers guaranteed to take you all the way to springtime.

Creature feature
L-R: March hare jumper, Joules, £69.95; Knitted rabbit jumper, Miss Selfridge, £39; Knitted sequin bird sweat, Topshop, £46; Cooperative sequin fox jumper, Urban Outfitters, £48


Patterned prints
L-R: Vila bright nordic jumper, asos.com, £45; Chelsea Girl intarsia jumper, River Island, £35; Phase eight fairisle guinevere jumper, Debenhams, £37.50


Sparkles and sequins

L-R: Oasis chunky sequin yarn top, Debenhams, £55; Vero Moda sequin knit jumper, asos.com, £32; Vintage beaded top, Oasis, £70; Jovonnista sequin bow jumper, Pret a portabello, £55

It's in the details
L-R: Bow shoulder top, Oasis, £32; Black fluffy jumper, Dorothy Perkins, £24.50; Open knitwork sweater, Mango, £39.90; Relaxed fit lurex sweater, Mango, £34.90

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Style insider: Bristol's best boutiques

This is the very first of a feature we hope will become a regular on Chic & Cheerful. Style insider looks at your favourite places to find fashion up and down the country. First up, Martha Cliff has put together an amazing guide on where to find the best fashion in Bristol - let us know what you think!

Ahh, Christmas shopping. If you're anything like me, you've probably found yourself drowning your sorrows with a glass of mulled wine and watch old re-runs of the Vicar of Dibley rather than venturing out into the frozen landscape and traipsing around B&Q for a nail gun for your dad.

The West Country certainly does not carry with it connotations of cosmopolitan heaven, but, as I found on a recent flurry around Bristol’s boutique scene, it has a little more on offer than scrumpy cider and cream teas.
It's not a maze in Maze (and there aren't any terrible puns either)
Maze 
Located in the affluent area of Clifton, Maze is one of those shops you wouldn’t dare approach if you had just eaten a sticky jam doughnut.

Offering a glorious collection of designer names including Joseph, French Connection and Day Birger et Mikkelsen, its light and airy spaces could be compared with some of London’s tip top shops.

Hannah Holloway, Maze’s owner, assured me that although it all looks very London chic, Maze is more down to earth, “We sell future classics that are made to be worn and loved, Maze customers want to be fashionable without being fashion victims. It's not about being a slave to fashion, but about what looks great and feels right.”

26-28 The Mall, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 4DS, mazeclothing.co.uk


The kitsch interior at ShOp
ShOp 
The name 'ShOp' sounds as inspiring as your local Tesco express but this is one not to judge by its cover, so to speak.

Tucked away in the Christmas steps the ShOp is an Aladdin’s cave of all things vintage, bursting at the seams with all sorts of curious objects for you to spend hours appreciating (or trying to figure out what they are).

It also provides guilt free shopping: the ShOp puts all profits back into community arts projects.

Jayne, ShOp’s owner has a passion for vintage clothing - and not just because of its style credibility, “We believe vintage clothing, by being second-hand, is a more ethical option to the high street. Vintage pieces are one-offs and often the reference point for catwalk trends; you can be fashion-forward without comprising your morals or your bank balance.”

ShOp provides free tea and cake daily so if the stress of Christmas shopping is all getting too much, you know where to head for some yummy treats.


19, Christmas Steps, Bristol, BS1 5BS, shoptheshop.co.uk

Heavenly: 18 boutique, Bristol
18
18 is just a hop, skip and jump away from its sister store Maze in Clifton Village. You can find yourself in rather a lot more of a tizzy over what to buy in 18 than Maze: it's not just a closet full of clothes, but is also a concept store where everything is for sale - from the lovely Miller Harris candles to the antique French and Swedish furniture.

As well as being style conscious, 18 has a moral conscience too: “We favour a lot of environmentally conscious brands in 18," says Hannah Holloway. "Especially those who produce locally, supporting British industry, using vegetable dyes and natural processes.”

It’s like having the most delicious cake and then being told it’s fat free: you can buy the jacket and feel like you’ve just done a little good in the world. Guilt free shopping heaven.

18 The Mall, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 4DS, 18themall.co.uk


You won't find scraps for sale at Rag trade!
Rag trade
One thing you can be sure about in this charming little boutique is that they are certainly not selling old rags.

Listed as Bristol’s best vintage shop, Rag trade acts as a bring and buy store where customers receive 50% of the profits for the clothes they bring in. Perfect if you're in need of some extra pennies!

Rag trade operates around the idea of sustainability in clothing and, speaking to owner Alison Taylor, it’s clear that she wants pieces that are going to last, “I have a huge problem with Primark, those clothes don’t last. I love a real mix of labels, I truly believe in mixing it up.”

If you just have to have that dream dress for your Christmas party and need a little extra wardrobe space, Rag trade is the place to go.

2 Upper Maudlin Street, Bristol, BS2 8DJ, ragtradeboutique.co.uk


Vintage tie anyone?
Oxfam Boutique
I have to say, charity shops are not my forte. I always try to be one of those people who find amazing things to give a new life to but, let’s face it, charity shopping can be kind of tedious at times.

But, saying that, I could spend hours in Bristol's Oxfam Boutique. I'm pretty sure if it was in Knightsbridge, people would call it luxurious vintage and stick a £100 price tag on it. But this boutique is as reasonably priced as any Oxfam shop.

Just think of the most brilliant dressing up box any of your friends had when you were a kid - but beautifully laid out and carefully displayed. I find I’m always much more adventurous in this shop because you have such fun trying items on and they’re so cheap that even if you wouldn’t usually buy them you can afford to do so.

If you wound up with a serious fashion follower as your secret Santa this year, then hop down to Oxfam and buy a silk scarf and pass it off as vintage couture darling!

77 Park Street Bristol, BS1 5PF


Do you have a style destination to share? Send us an email at thechicandcheerful@gmail.com and you could appear on Chic & Cheerful!

Monday, 12 December 2011

Bargain of the week: Vamp up your favourite shoes with Blingbacks

You know those shoes in the back of your wardrobe? The ones that are so comfy you refuse to part with them but at the same time could do with a bit of sprucing up? Well, I've found the solution!

Blingbacks in action
These cute Blingbacks are the easiest way to glam up your old faithfuls for only a couple of quid - great if you need new heels but are a bit strapped for cash. 

They have a really neat silicon pad on the back which slips inside your shoe so the jewel rests on the outside. Perfect early Christmas present to yourself!
Blingbacks cost between £12 and £15, depending on the style, and are available in Debenhams, on Asos and Amazon.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Whistles A/W 11

I'm really not sure how I managed to miss out on this fantastic video from Whistles earlier this year but now that I've found it, I hope all you Chic & Cheerful readers will love it as much as I do! 

Lovely music, gorgeous clothes, beautiful film.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Versace at H&M Cardiff (or the day I got up at 4.45am for fashion)

Two of the lovely ladies at the Versace
for H&M opening, Cardiff
Editor's note: I know I promised I wouldn't talk about Versace for H&M anymore but...er...sorry!

One cold (bloomin’ freezing actually) day in November, I was given the opportunity to visit H&M Cardiff to report on the Versace collaboration’s first day in-store. This is the story of what happened to me the very first time I went to a high street collaboration opening.

At 4.30AM on Thursday 17 November, I dragged my poor other half out of our cosy bed and pushed him into the car, demanding that we hurry to catch the 6AM train to the bright lights of the Welsh capital. After much deliberation (and Twitter watching the night before) I figured 7AM was a safe bet to get to the Hayes’ store – I’d be, what, in the first hundred or so, right?

Wrong. I marched off that train, shaking with excitement and chilliness (it was prepare for the weather or prepare for 3 hours of queueing with fashion fanatics – guess what I chose). As I rounded the corner, I thought my eyes must have deceived me: there couldn’t have been more than 10 (10!) people outside. Where were the queues? Where were the maniacs crying that they wished they’d gone to London to see Donatella? How was I going to get photos of the massive queues of 10 PEOPLE?!

The 'queue'
Once I’d calmed down (and popped into a conveniently placed Starbucks next door for a caffeine hit), I realised what I was up against: three ladies who had camped out (more on them later) and a few younger girls wrapped up in cute winter jackets. Surely I’d be able to pick up some of the covetable accessories from the collab with only a few in front of me? Brilliant.

As time went on (and my mood improved with more hastily bought skinny cappuccinos), I began to chat to my excitable co-queuers about what they thought of the Versace/H&M pieces. Most were still hugely enthusiastic after seeing the window displays but some (er, apologies Donatella...) thought it looked kind of cheap. Like school skirt fabric cheap.

Cheap or chic?
Regardless, rumours were rife: would there be menswear inside? What sizes were available? Could anyone see any friggin’ printed leggings?? We whiled away the hours debating what to buy and comparing fashion sense and previous H&M collaboration buys (my Swedish Hasbeens were trumped by a model turned scientist who had picked up a Lanvin dress on sale).

The first group (the three ladies who had camped out to be at the front of a queue of what was eventually 25ish long) went in at 9.05AM. To say that they raided the place would be an understatement. I’m pretty sure they picked up one of everything. Each. I heard a sales assistant saying that one woman alone had spent £1600 on pieces from the collection – she said she was buying for her daughter, make of that what you will.

By the time I went in with the second group of five the shelves were looking a little sparse. I'd promised myself that I’d only pick up accessories and managed to stick true to my word – although that did mean I ended up spending £40 on what transpired to be some quite cheap jewellery. And when I say cheap, I mean cheap. They look amazing from afar but up close you can see the production marks in the base metal and I'm pretty sure they're going to turn my wrists green. That being said though, I still love them. L-O-V-E love them. Ah, the fickle nature of fashion.

My accessory of choice
Moral of the story? Go to Cardiff next time. They may not have the whole collection on display but you sure do beat the fashion traffic.

Monday, 5 December 2011

Bargain of the week: £14 party shoes

Nothing says Christmas like a bit of excess glitter. So don your LBD and add some sparkle with these fantastic gold courts from the one and only Matalan. Teamed with last week's bargain dress for a tenner and you'll have a gorgeous party outfit for under £25!
Gold glitter courts, £14, Matalan
Word of warning: I find Matalan shoes tend to be a little bit larger than the average fit so you'll definitely need to try these on before buying. 

Monday, 28 November 2011

Bargain of the week: the £10 party dress


Going to be a bit low on cash this Christmas? Look good in bodycon? Then we have the answer! This gorgeous LBD is only a tenner (yup, just ten whole pounds) from Primark - bargain or what?!

And for those able to splash a bit more cash for the party season, this red long sleeve version sports a similar pleat panel style. 

Pleat panel bodycon dress, Topshop, £38

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Sew me a bone


A few months back I discovered the work of Inge Jacobsen, the artist who uses embroidery on found work such as magazine covers, and fell in love. So when Topshop posted on their blog about Philadelphian artist Matthew Cox, I knew they were on to something special.


Matthew uses MRIs and X-rays as the basis of his artistry, adding layers of flowers and images of nature to turn these clinical sheets into beautiful works of modern art.
"Redefinition motivates me to create my embroidered x-rays. The stark clash of two such divergent materials, cloth and plastic, is the simple catalyst. One tactile and labour intensive, the other technical, and quickly a finished product. There’s a wide historical context, one ancient, decorative, and artisanal, the other contemporary and devoid of aesthetic intention. By simply placing one of these materials on top of the other the understood purpose of each is redefined."  --  Matthew Cox.

All the works featured in this post belong to Matthew Cox and are used for commenting purposes only.

Monday, 21 November 2011

Bargain of the week: Versace-esque trousers at River Island

This is the last I'll gab on about Versace for H&M - promise! 

Grazia featured these beauties in their fashion chart last week and I had to pass on the tip. For all those who missed the Versace for H&M collection and still want a piece of the multicoloured action, check out this offering from River Island. 

Molto bene!

Work hyperactive Italian style for only £40 
in these red dolce vita skinnies.

Monday, 14 November 2011

Bargain of the week: £20 gift voucher free with Elle UK!



Yup, you read it right, this month Elle readers receive a free £20 Kurt Geiger gift card (no minimum spend required) to use in store or online.

I chose a gorgeous Cassie bracelet in lilac and hematite (perfect for Christmas party season!) and only had to pay the £4 postage. Bargain!


Kurt Geiger's Cassie bracelet

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Designer Q&A: Catrin Watkins, maggie + me

Welsh designer Catrin Watkins
At a young age, Catrin Watkins found her calling: she was going to be a fashion designer. The enchanting tale that follows is one of family inspiration, overcoming serious health issues and developing the skills that would one day mould the girl from Penyrheol into one of the most successful designers to come out of Wales in recent years.

Catrin’s label, maggie + me, is built on the love of design that she shares with - and was nurtured by - her grandmother Maggie, herself an accomplished seamstress. Maggie + me provides unique style mixed with catwalk trends and sprinkled with the accessibility that has led to the garments being stocked in high street department stores across the world.

Chic and Cheerful caught up with Catrin to talk Welsh influences and how to start a label just ahead of the launch of the maggie + me Autumn/Winter 2011 collection.

C&C: Had you always intended to set up a label?
Catrin: It was always a dream to set up the label but I wanted to gain experience in the industry first so I was prepared for what it entailed. From a very young age, being surrounded by patterns and learning to sew with my grandmother gave me a keen interest [in fashion design] and a foundation to be creative.


C&C: How did you come up with the maggie + me concept?
Catrin: I wanted to create a label that was more of a mind-set than about age. The main inspiration was my grandmother as she taught me a lot and it seemed the right name for the label. She was overjoyed and proud that I named it after her.

C&C: How long did it take to prepare the first collection?
Catrin: It took about three months to prepare the first collection, with a lot of time spent abroad sourcing fabrics and trims to create the desired look. It was hard work but I had faith that the outcome would be positive and now the collection is growing every season. I’m constantly designing to push the collection aesthetic and to ensure the brand evolves.


C&C: Tell us about the inspirations behind your latest collection.
Catrin: Focussing on attention to detail and up to the minute trend forecasting, all of the collections offer a unique style statement combined with catwalk trends. Autumn/Winter 2011 explores the brand’s sophisticated and versatile side, with a range encompassing chic dresses, sharp tailoring, cosy knits and outerwear.

C&C: How has growing up in Wales and Welsh fashion culture influenced your work?
Catrin: Growing up in Wales was great but back then there were not so many options for shopping as there are now and my grandmother would make a lot of my clothes. One thing it influenced me was to be comfortable in my own style: it showed me to be true to myself and that you do not always have to follow the crowds.

C&C: How does your style now compare with what you design?
Catrin: My style is very similar to maggie + me designs. I love understated designs, chic yet with an edge that is easily able to go from day to night.

C&C: What advice can you offer aspiring designers?
Catrin: You need to live and breathe fashion. Work hard, study and get experience. In terms of your design approach, keep true to yourself.


See more of the gorgeous AW11/12 'love me' collection and find out where you can buy maggie + me.

Monday, 7 November 2011

Oxfam Boutique second birthday fashion show


Cardiff’s fashion elite came out in force to celebrate Oxfam Boutique’s second birthday last month and Chic & Cheerful was there to see it all.


Morgan Arcade was turned into a catwalk for the night to showcase some of the donations Oxfam has received in a fabulous vintage fashion show. Models strutted their stuff to a quirky soundtrack,wearing outfits put together by Boutique staff. All of the garments featured were available in store (although judging by the enthusiasm of the attendees I'd be surprised if any are left now!).


After the show, guests were treated to wine, nibbles and the opportunity to have a chat with some of the ladies and gentlemen who had volunteered to model: one of whom confessed to Chic & Cheerful that she nearly walked down the catwalk the wrong way! Eek! But luckily not even nerves could stop this from being a well-choreographed and very successful birthday bash.


For vintage designer fashion, Oxfam Boutique is one of the best shops in Cardiff. The store sells donations from the very generous people of the city (thank goodness there are so many fashion followers in Cardiff!) so we get the best vintage right here in South Wales. If you haven’t popped in yet, visit for the very friendly staff and a great selection of clothes and accessories.

Oxfam boutique, Cardiff: a video review


Friday, 4 November 2011

Bargain of the week: feather bracelets

It's Friday! Yes! This calls for a Chic and Cheerful treat: the introduction of a new blog regular! Right, so before I overdose on the exclamation marks, let's get this show on the road.
The LeiVanKash version
of my high street bargain
I picked up a cute LeiVanKash replica bracelet at the end of the Miss Selfridge summer sale for only £2 - and haven't stopped wearing it. So when I spotted more lookalikes on their website (at a quarter of the LeiVanKash price!) I had to share.

I'm a huge fan of earthy, tribal styles and this lovely beaded feather bracelet is just the ticket for rocking a laid-back vibe. Try it layered with other friendship bracelets or worn by itself for a great statement piece.

Left: Miss Selfridge, £6.50
Right: LeiVanKash, £165

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

The Whiteboard fashion tweetwatch


Need to know the latest fashion news? Want more sassy Chic & Cheerful content? Well, as of this week you can read our quirky Tweet Watch posts every Tuesday and Thursday on Whiteboard fashion, bringing you the best of what's happening in the fashion world that day.

Click through for a little taster of what you're in store for...

Sunday, 30 October 2011

The fashion news round up 30/10/11

Today sees the start of a new Chic & Cheerful regular: the fashion news round up. Every week we'll be summing up the latest fashion news you may have missed in one handy post - so let's get started!

This season's Primark menswear - not too shabby!
1. Primark in Selfridges
Yes ladies and gents the rumours are true: Primark is to open two concessions in the Manchester Trafford Centre and Birmingham Bullring Selfridges stores. 

However, the sad news is is that the 100 piece collection is menswear only. I know, I know, what are they thinking?! Surely this would be an amazing opportunity for the high street chain to put together a limited collection for us girls? Apparently if this venture is a success, bosses are keen to expand but there are no plans for a womenswear collection as of yet. Boo!

Image (c) ElleUK.com
2. Mary is coming back to Topshop
When all the fashion editors were invited to see the Spring/Summer 2012 Topshop offerings this week, Twitter went crazy. Sure there were some typically gorgeous pieces on offer but that's not what everyone was so excited about. It was the news that Mary Katrantzou was bringing her gorgeous demi-couture dresses to the High Street. Only one image of the Mary/Topshop collaboration has managed to make its way onto the internet but, as you can see, it's very similar to her Autumn/Winter line - although without the £8,000+ price tag.

The line is coming out next season, as is Mary's range for Longchamp (stylish bags with extravagant prints? Where do I sign up!), meaning we get even more of the gorgeous Greek's sensational work at affordable prices.

More Katrantzou treats at Longchamp
3. Elle Collections redesign
Ah Twitter, you offer such a legitimate way of Facebook stalking. This week, the news that my favourite magazine (and an absolute must read for all fashion lovers) is to undergo a redesign before its next issue early next year. Collections Editor Avril Mair tweeted blogger Bryan Boy the good news - and has apparently asked him to do some work for the mag. Eek!

The girl with the H&M tattoo?
4. H&M have been busy
It's just over two weeks until the Versace for H&M collection launches so you'd expect H&M to be pretty busy right now. But the fashion chain has managed to squeeze in another collaboration announcement. As of mid December, clothes inspired by The girl with the dragon tattoo protagonist Lisbeth (and designed by the upcoming film's costume designer Trish Summerville) will be hitting the shops. Expect lots of punky, grungy looks, perfect for Winter style.

5. And finally...
Well, this may not strictly be fashion news as such but we have a very exciting announcement: this little website won best lifestyle blog runner up in the 2011 Wales blog awards!! The judges loved our sassy take on fashion and unique opinions pieces. Thank you so much for your support over the last eight months, its very appreciated - and we look forward to bringing you more of what you love here at Chic & Cheerful.
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