How Clothes Can Improve Your Mindfullness And Increase Confidence…

April 17, 2019
Disclosure.  Comfort asked me to attent their lovely event that sparked my own thoughts on fashion and clothing.  Though gifted free product I am under no obligation to write a post.
A picture of me sitting on my couch with my lovely navy hoodie on and a bottle of comfort fabric conditioner in the far background.

I love a good university study!  Recently I jumped at the chance to go to an event sponsored by Comfort, who had commissioned an international study by Professor Karen Pine, about how caring for your clothes can be good for your mental health.  My relationship with clothes has always been a bit rocky.  All bar one of the schools I attended required me to wear a uniform.  The one that didn’t was so stressful as my parents didn’t have much money, and I was often wearing the same outfit multiple times a week.  Kids notice these things and can be quite cruel.  I was always clean just on repeat!

Growing Up My Clothes Were Always Too Big!

My school uniforms often came with strict rules and included blazers and summer hats.  Some required hair ribbons to be worn as a final touch!  I remember at that school there often were ribbons languishing on the ground, having fallen from their owner’s hair, destined for the bin!  Throughout my teenage years the uniforms I wore were waaay too big.  My parents, anticipating a growth spurt that never came, purchased dresses four sizes too big!  This had a knock-on effect into my twenties where I was not in love with clothing.  I could never dress myself, often purchasing items that were too big, not really knowing what was flattering.

The study, by the University of Hertfordshire, found that 64% of Brits believe that how they dress can make them feel better.  I am completely in agreement!  Having tried and failed for years to go shopping, my mid-twenties saw me pay for a personal stylist.  It was the best thing I have ever done! 

I Invested In An Expert To Help Me Dress!

Meeting on a chilly morning in Melbourne I showed her photos of the type of professional look I wanted to convey.  What happened next was one of few amazing shopping days in my life!  She knew her stuff and every store we went into had me trying on two to three pieces that fit perfectly!  I ended up walking down the main street of Melbourne, pretty woman style, with over 20 shopping bags making an entire new wardrobe.  Joy!  The subsequent years wearing those clothes and adding new pieces made fashion fun and I fell in love with clothes. 

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During this period my confidence was at an all-time high.  I was promoted multiple times, went on plenty of dates and achieved my goal of moving to the UK.  Clothing played its part in adding to my everyday confidence.  In the study 35% of respondents believed that a situation had gone better because of the clothes they were wearing.  Waking up and knowing that everything in my wardrobe fit and I was set for my day was an empowering feeling.  When recently I fell out of love with my wardrobe I noticed it played a significant part in how my day started and my mood throughout.

Clothing Influences Our Moods and Natural Fibres Are Best.

The study found that over 41% of participants found they associated feelings of calm with cotton and linen which could be included in your mindfulness routing.  Whereas poor man-made nylon only contributed to 5% of these feelings.  Boosting your wellbeing through increasingly wearing natural fibres can be subconsciously good for your mind.  Having made sure I don’t save for best, I am also becoming more mindful about the clothing I wear.  The hoody in these photos was on my wish list and when it went on sale my parents agreed it could be a birthday purchase.  Every time I wear it I feel like I am being hugged in a cloud of wool and cashmere.  It is so divine, and my mood is lifted.  There is something in how natural fibres can make you feel happy and boost your subconscious mood.

Professor Karen Pine’s 5 Tips To Make Clothes Positivity Impact Your Mood.

  1. Choose natural materials that feel nice on your skin.  Try wool, cotton and linen.
  2. Wear clothes that make you comfortable.  Remove and donate clothes that you don’t enjoy.
  3. Add colour on dull days.  Boost your energy with bright, vibrant shades.
  4. Add accessories.  Statement necklaces or bright lipstick.  Add pops of colour this way if bright clothing feels to risky!
  5. Develop a signature look.  Build a look you like that makes you want to get dressed in the morning.

How are you dressing at the moment?  Do you have a preferred textile that your clothes are made from?  I’d love to hear about it.  PF xo

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Three Shows to Watch on Netflix…

April 15, 2019
Picture of me sitting on my couch and watching Colony on netflix.

This weather of hectic wind has really encouraged me to stay indoors for the past two months. I even signed up to Netflixs to extend my library of programs to watch! Like everyone before me I have gone down a rabbit hole of box sets and autoplay functions. There are so many fantastic programs on Netflix that don’t get the same level of promotion and exist on word of mouth. Here is a selection I have recently watched that you might enjoy too!

This One Has An Alien Invasion!

Colony, follows a family living in Los Angeles a year after an alien invasion where humans have welcomed their ‘hosts’. Trying to rescue one of their sons from Santa Monica results in the Father working for the government, whilst Mum joins the resistance! There are so many twists and turns with plenty of alliances and an overarching threat to be sent to the factory. No one ever returns from the factory. Season 3 is due out in May.

This One Has Plenty of Paris Shots!

Call My Agent. More upbeat, this show follows a talent agency in Paris, who have to balance the egos of their clients and the demands of film directors. This show is great fun and there are plenty of belly laugh moments. Nothing too crazy or over the top. A nice change to lots of the programs on at the moment. And the best bit? If you love Paris you will love seeing the city from a local’s perspective.

This One Shows You Behind The Scenes!

Seven Days. A documentary showing the seven days before a major event, ranging from the Westminster Dog Show to a Chanel Haute Couture Fashion Show in Paris. Capturing the intensity and stress of each event, we also follow several players to understand the work to stage each event. My favourite episode is the opening of Eleven Madison Park and the attention to detail, that all the staff worked so hard to perfect!

Looking for more recommendations? Check out three other shows here.

Happy watching! I’d love to hear of any recommendations you have. PF xo

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The Bristol Hotel Review…

April 10, 2019
Disclosure.  My stay at The Bristol Hotel was complimentary, but all opnions are my own and under no obligation.
Picture of the outside of hte hotel and the brutalist architecture.
Picture of the main lobby with a huge bouquet of flowers and red berry drink bowl with glasses for guest to try.

I love to travel and visit new places, I mean who doesn’t?!  Typically, when it comes to accommodation, I research Airbnb’s for their affordability and knowledge of the local area.  Whilst hosts can be a wealth of information my recent experience at The Bristol Hotel, with Supal, opened my eyes to impeccable, family run, boutique accommodations.  The Bristol Hotel is located a short 10-minute walk from Temple Meads station and is a fine example of Brutalist architecture.  The easy stroll takes you through Queen Square, a beautiful example of a Georgian park, with cobbled streets and magnificent town houses.

Picture of the room with a beautiful bed, matching red coverlet and bedside lamps.
Picture of Bristol magazine and hotel hotepad and pencil.
Picture of room and bed from a different angle.

Arriving and check in was incredibly quick and whilst Supal dealt with the paperwork I sampled the flavoured water!  This was changed regularly throughout our weekend stay with my favourite being the redberry.  Hearing we were there to explore Bristol we had a fantastic conversation with Jane about the history of Bristol, current attractions and restaurant tips.  Bristol is a destination for business during the week, supporting the banking and defence industry, and corporate workers seeking a quick city weekend break like Supal and I. 

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Once we had checked into our room we headed outside to walk around the immediate area.  The Bristol Hotel’s location is central and on the harbour. It is easy to access the Clifton and Stokes Croft areas as well as the old town area.  Upon our return we had dinner in The River Grille and I haven’t enjoyed a meal like that for a long time!  Wanting to taste more than one dish we choose differently for each course.  Spiced pumpkin soup and seared scallops were delicious for our starters.  It had been a bit chilly as we walked and the soup warmed me up perfectly! 

Picture of the The River Grille showing off the large glass windows looking out to the harbour.

Another picture of The River Grille showing the tables decked out ready for dinner.
PIcture of starters and drinks.

For mains there was duck leg confit, and spinach and ricotta gnocchi.  Both divine and we added some green beans and roasted cauliflower for added vegie sides.  Feeling extremely full we chose to share a chocolate fondant that we couldn’t finish!  I would have loved to also try the oreo cheesecake. But it would have been wasteful and allows me to go again!  Unlike other hotel restaurants I have patroned, The River Grille’s clientele was mainly locals. Everyone was enjoying the fine dining experience with views of the harbour.  I was secretly hoping to witness a proposal but no such luck!

Pictures of mains and sides.
Picture of dessert.

Our room had fantastic views of canal boats dotted along the harbour leading across Bristol to the distant green hills of the Ashton Court Estate.  The room had ameneties from Temple Spa and a desk area for corporate travellers.  Falling into the plush red arm chair was delightful. Perfect to plan our venture outside from. 

Picture of view of harbour from room.

In the morning we had breakfast in bed.  My preferred option as I truly dislike getting ready, going downstairs and then returning to the room again.  I would rather lounge in the towelling robe as I eat from my preferred food selection!

Picture of me on the bed with my breakfast on a large tray!
Picture of close up of breakfast with all the trimmings.

Bristol is such a fantastic west country city that I have returned three times in six months. I have a Bristol locals food guide here and a 48 hours in Clifton guide here.  Let me know if you go and stay at The Bristol Hotel.  I’d love to hear about your trip!  PF xo

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