Tanja Curin

A great friend took me to this fantastic little shop a few steps up from the main square of Hvar town, the shop of Tanja Curin. And my great husband bought me a beautiful 3rd wedding anniversary necklace there! Featured here. The shop blew me away. I just had to do a post on it, I felt her work was so special and gorgeous. Really worth going if you’re ever in Hvar on Hvar (no, that’s not a typo.) The shop assistant, Ana-Maria, was super nice too. And also gorgeous!

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Shopping inspiration #7

#1 Feather ear cuffs. How did I not know about these before??? You can get one from River Island here but also, if you want more elaborate and authentic ones, try Etsy here

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#2 Konceptich is a Croatian site set up by a friend of mine. A fantastic concept, it stocks affordable clothing, bags and jewelry from upcoming and already well established local designers. This bracelet for example I think is just gorgeous:

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#3 Animal heads from Anthropologie. Yes, if am not careful our home’s soon going to look like an African hunting lodge… But these really are lovely – for a study, or you could buy one as a new baby gift for a nursery. Something a bit different, anyway.

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#4 Converse. I kid you not. I resisted getting a pair of these for soooo long as I thought they were a bit predictable / ubiquitous / ‘done’ but I have to admit that these things (in white) have revolutionised my wardrobe this spring / summer. I’m a big fan of summer ankle boots but you can’t wear them all the time and I’m a bit funny about wearing sandals in town (too grimey and you get ‘Gypsy Foot’). They seem to kind of go with anything. Result!

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#5 For your walls. La boutique du grand cirque has some classy, quirky wall stickers like these:

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Shopping inspiration #6

#1 Anthropologie shower curtain. Beautiful.

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#2 Rockett St George online emporium has some great stuff. These angel wings hoop earrings, for example

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#3 Alice Palace cards. Like any self-respecting Brit, I’m big on sending cards, despite the advent of the cyberspace age. Thank you cards, birthday cards, anniversary cards, congratulations cards, you name it, I send it. And there’s literally NO better place to buy them than from here. I’ve been a fan for years, especially of the animal ones (no change there then) and the city ones (London, Oxford, Windsor, Brighton, Bournemouth, Cardiff) which are particularly stylish. Reasonably priced, great quality, and very original.

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#4 Peacock Screen. Gorgeous.

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#5 Rory Dobner ceramic tiles

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Amendment to the Dress Edit (Ode to Liz)

Somebody rather stylish pointed out to me that not many of these dresses (which I picked out to be worn to weddings) from my recent post (The Dress Edit) would suit well endowed ladies. And she was absolutely right. The fact that I have the DNA of a plank clearly makes me predisposed to picking styles which do not require substantial boobs – apologies. Now I’m afraid those of you who this will interest might just have to spend a little more as cheaper cuts are not quite as forgiving on womanly figures. A few tips for those lucky enough to have large bosoms:
  • try not to have your sleeves stop in line with your boobs as that will give the illusion of more width. Sleeveless or capped sleeves  if you can get away with them, or longer 3/4 sleeves will work better for you
  • slimmer / fitted sleeves will work well (they will keep the upper half neater)
  • avoid any extra material on your top half, you don’t want to look ‘blousey’. Generally, body skimming, good cuts and quality, fabrics with slightly more weight to them (ie not flimsy) and a bit of give will look best
  • wear a great bra
  • if you have a waist, accentuate it
  • be careful with pattern and print, you don’t want to achieve the Pat Butcher effect. Probably safest to avoid animal prints unless you can really rock it, in which case, do!
  • show off your decolletage if it’s in good nick, if not, keep the neckline slightly higher up
  • check for gaping
  • don’t show cleavage if your boobs are droopy, or bolster them so they’re not
  • try daring cuts for special occasions (think Marilyn Monroe) but be careful not to cross the line into tarty
  • generally, some sort of v or shirt collar neck will suit you best, unless you want to go for a retro busty milkmaid vibe (probably not recommendable) or a Dangerous Liaisons look (quite hard to pull off unless you’re going to a ball or a fancy dress party)
  • try well cut cowl necks for an expensive and sophisticated look (think Nigella)
  • avoid looking slutty or matronly and instead aim for fabulous, stylish and sexy
Here are some dresses I found that technically should work. You could try strapless dresses (Ted Baker have some in ‘nice’ summery prints) but I haven’t included any here as my personal opinion is that they look too bridesmaid-y. After having a scout around online, it seems there are some ‘specialist’ options, but none of them have great reviews. Can anyone recommend any good brands which work for larger chested ladies so I can share your intel with the rest of the vast Nomad Thief readership?
This is a classic shape which should work well
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An interesting and pretty print for a wedding, and I’d hazard a guess that the fabric’s quite nice too
Planet, £129
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(Apologies for the small picture!) A great quirky dress (it’s not so easy to find a print / colour scheme which is not twee) which was brought to my attention by my v stylish friend M. She’s a plank too, and the dress looks good for giving the illusion of curves – but I think it would be pretty great on any body shape
Whistles, £165
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Okay so the shiny fabric isn’t so great, and she’s not doing herself any favours in those awful flip-flops, but you get the idea. Subtle, foxy cleavage, and hip skimming-ness.
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Interesting print and nice if you want to go colourful
Planet, £99
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Okay so it’s a little bit K-Mid, but the no fussiness of the block colour and the fitted sleeves are going to work
Ralph Lauren, now £82.50 (XS, M & L currently still available)
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Remember, we’re looking for dresses to wear to a wedding. This could look nicely va va voom with great accessories
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Safe, and a nice, but not too twee print
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Not a big fan of red and black together (old school uniform colours) but for those of you that are
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For those of you who want a 50s look, try to find something with a little more structure around the boobs and waist, like this:
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This could look great on someone with enough height to carry it off, boobs or no boobs. I know I advised no ruffles or unnecessary detail but I think this doesn’t go overboard and could look great. Of course it’s desperately unhelpful trying to see what these dresses would look like on a not-size-10 model, but use your imagination
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Last but not least, a nice top half silhouette with a foxy pencil skirt bottom
Alexon, £150
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xx Nomad Thief

The dress edit

Wedding season is fast approaching, so I thought it would be useful if I trawled around for some nice, high street dresses. Am shocked at how many awful ones there are out there to be honest, so be careful. And styling is all important so please think about your shoes and bag and jewellery – and factor them into your budget (or organise to borrow) – those things can ruin even the best dress, or elevate a mediocre one to levels of greatness. Also, don’t buy tight thinking you’ll lose weight before the event, chances are that you won’t, and wearing a size that’s slightly looser will be much more forgiving than squeezing yourself in and not being able to breathe all day. Play to your strengths. If you have great arms, show them off! If you’re carrying extra baby weight but have great boobs, show them off! Great colouring? Showcase it with some daring colours and prints! Talking of colour, and weddings tend to bring out a lot of it, try to be a little unpredictable – be inspired by the Dulux colour mixes adverts. Or try using all different tones of the same colour from the palest primrose through to rich daffodil yellow. Next point to note: avoid anything that might make you look like a bride, or a bridesmaid. To this end please, please avoid Coast.

It’s a nice time to do something out of character – everyone will be dressed up so you’re less likely to feel silly. If you’re not usually ‘girly’ why not go all out and surprise everyone? If you’re just not a dress person, try a jumpsuit, or some sort of silky separates look – but don’t go too casual – there’s nothing worse than spending all day feeling like you’ve made a lame effort. Try luxe neutrals (think wide legged palazzo pants and a silk blouse, with classy jewellery) which can look very sophisticated. I like to wear all black to weddings, it can stand out in the sea of pastels and colour and looks striking and smart in the summer. But the jury’s out on whether all black is ‘allowed’ at a wedding. Hope the dress edit saves you some time.

xx Nomad Thief aka the Wicked Fairy Godmother

Style it: pale grey sandal boots and a chunky bracelet, picking out colour/s from the dress. Need to wear a hat? a plain pillbox one is the only thing that would work
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Zara dress, £79.99
Style it: not with such clumpy shoes as shown – keep it pretty and light. If you need to wear a hat, then wear a floppy wide brimmed one. Or just put some flowers (real ones) in your hair and keep with a bohemian theme
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Style it: pretty, discreet, bohemian jewellery, strappy sandals or ornamental ballerina flats, and a tan. Don’t think this is a dress that will work if you need to wear a hat, it’s more of a flowers-in-your-hair / daisy chain round your head type dress
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Style it: ethnic chunky jewellery, a bohemian, long-strapped bag, and strappy wedges. Need to wear a hat? Again, a floppy wide-brimmed one is best with this. And BIG retro sunglasses
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Style it: grey or palest lilac accessories. No hat, but some weird little round glasses would do. Channel a Courtney Love vibe and don’t give a rat’s ass if the dress length is inappropriate for a wedding
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Style it: that’s the beauty of it, you can’t go far wrong
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Style it: comfortable but stylish wedges, if you’re very pregnant
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Style it: flats for comfort
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Style it: something other than black (you don’t want to look like a bumble bee). Actually, to be honest, am at a bit of a loss as to how to style this one
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Style it: classy heels and great hair
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Style it: an upper arm bangle, or an armful of various roman/grecian style bangles and some pretty gladiator sandals. An elaborate plaited updo with some soft goldy / metallic bits stuck in would look best with this
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Style it: pretty shoes and pretty earrings. And a fascinator, much as I despise them
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Style it: simple stilettos, a green clutch, a neat green pillbox if you like – and go easy on the jewellery (and lipstick) to avoid looking twee (a heinous crime)
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Style it: cream accessories with maybe a pop of red (lipstick?) for a chic, gallic feel. Get a navy hat with a bit of a veil for an even more chic / cute look. Or some sort of summer cloche could look great with it
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Style it: a Chanel style smart black bag and stylish platformed courts. Hat? Go extravagantly large and 80s
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Style it: killer pins and attitude. Keep it simple – high peep-toed courts, a bangle and a plain clutch. No hat but maybe an oversized flower in your hair, or red lipstick like the lady in the picture – you need something to pull peoples eyes up to your face
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Style it: minimal jewellery and ideally, no bag – the dress does all the talking. Hat? No – do yourself an updo and stick some chopsticks through it
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Style it: stilettos (red, pink or green) for a 50s feel. Or peep-toed courts. Again – if you need a hat: pillbox
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Style it: solid cream / off white would go with with this, little gloves and a pillbox hat would set it off nicely. Or a cute ‘formal’ turban
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Style it: platform courts and no jewellery
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Style it: a long string of pearls and a black and cream squareish shaped long strapped shoulder bag. A straw cloche might look good with this. I said might
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Style it: hair up and statement earrings, little else. Strappy wedges to give height for maximum impact. No hat but if you want to go the whole hog wear your hair up in a gold turban
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Shopping inspiration #5

Since am currently staying in Belgrade and managed to come without my camera, this week has been less about street style hunting and more about online browsing. Hence the frequent ‘shopping inspiration’ posts. A post on Belgrade coming soon, in case you’re interested to visit, it’s quite a cool city.

#1 Clarks (yes, Clarks) ‘Anika Kendra’ shoes. Perfect for with boyfriend jeans and a slouchy blazer and vest for spring / summer evenings out. The snakeskin stops them from looking too smart.

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#2 Jo Malone candle - French Lime Blossom. Decadent and expensive, but worth every penny to transform your home into a beautiful smelling space.

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#3 Demobaza. Resident Evil style clothing. Super cool.

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#4 Wallpaper from Anthropologie. You probably wouldn’t want to paper a whole room in it for fear of feeling like you’d fallen down the rabbit hole but this could look fantastic on one wall or panel.

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And some other interesting ones from Anthropologie:

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#5 French script boxes. Good for putting all those miscellaneous bits in, either in a bathroom or a bedroom. And great value. Next – £14 for 3

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Gold

This year, I’ve decided, it’s all about the gold. I’ve been a silver girl all my life, but a bit of soft gold is now starting to appeal. It’s ironic, as I very recently was burgled and had 2 beautiful gold bracelets – which my lovely mother in law had given me – stolen. Nevertheless, gold is slowly, surely starting to feature. The afore-mentioned burglary settlement (albeit impending) is spurring me on to buy a few investment pieces (isn’t that what people of my age do?) – namely: a handbag, some boots, and maybe sunglasses or a watch. So, the handbag… I was looking for something practical, and ended up with something (in fact this is not the exact one, mine is a ‘Jojo’, since sold out in gold) that was everything but. I found this after trawling literally thousands. Why is it that no-one makes nice, slouchy handbags?

Unknown-3Boots: I searched Russell + Bromley and Carvela, the two places I’ve bought quality boots before. But it was Kate Cuba came up trumps with these. Cool, no? These were a very close second.

Unknown-1Sunglasses I have yet to find (ideally I’d like some gold aviators with blue lenses like these, but I can’t find them in a size to fit my pinhead). But a Seiko watch could be my next move, having seen this photo on a style file.

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Now all I need is a suntan and some warmer weather, and I’ll be able to show you how this all comes together.

Shopping inspiration #4

#1 Wild animals, so beautiful. I covet these, from here.

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#2 I’m becoming a little obsessed with ‘odd plates’. These are just gorgeous, and fantastic value too. You can use them, or display them on the wall. There’s 4 different designs (in this set and this set), in black and white or blue and white. Just great as a gift for stylish person who has everything.

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#3 Yes, even more wild animals. These are gorgeous quality and so original. I was very excited when I saw them! Great for creating that kind of 1920s / art deco vibe in your home. From the shop at the entrance to Somerset House.

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#4 Wall stickers. I like these or these. But there’s loads online – see which you fancy – it’s kind of like getting a temporary tattoo for your house.

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#5 Statement necklaces. These are both from Zara. So pretty, and a really easy way to add some interest to your look. About £20 each.

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Alternative Gift Ideas

#1 All the ingredients for a cocktail together with the recipe written / printed out, preferably stylishly

#2 If you’re a film buff, a list of great films (old and new) and a subscription for Lovefilm

#3 Tickets to see a film at an arthouse cinema (preferably a licensed one with sofas like this one)

#4 A Yoga Nidra CD (honestly, try it – you can’t not like it) and a nice candle (or an oil burner, essential oil & tealights)

#5 A cake that you’ve baked yourself, inside a fabulous tin. Like one of these, or go retro and special with one of these

#6 A DVD or 2 of your favourite films (you’ll have to subtly find out first if they’ve seen it/them) or series. Personally, I would suggest ‘Jeux D’Enfants‘ (Love me if you dare) or ‘Breaking Bad’

#7 Something that might inspire the receiver to get into a new hobby. Think: an origami set, a flower press, a sketch book and pencil, a camera

#8 Something that might inspire the receiver to get into fitness. Careful with this one for obvious reasons. Think: a gym membership or day pass, a bike. Or just a skipping rope

#9 A board game. Like scrabble. Let’s face it, most of us seriously need to step away from the computer / TV these days

#10 An ‘itinerary’. Tailor a day or afternoon out and write / print it out with care. We all get fed up with trying to think of ‘things to do’ and it’s always nice to do things on personal recommendation

#11 A nice book (try not just to buy something you fancy reading) – or a coffee table book. Be sure to write an inscription inside, this is as important as the choice of book

#12 A USB stick with some great tunes on it, hand picked by you, for them

For new parents:

#13 Something to amuse any elder siblings: sticker books, craft materials and so on. Try Paperchase or The Natural History Museum / Science Museum shops. Chances are they’ll only be too grateful to have something to keep them busy whilst the new baby is getting a lot of attention and the new parents are feeling frazzled. And let’s face it, babies don’t really appreciate gifts

#14 A gift for themselves (pampering stuff for the mum, a bottle of whisky for the dad, or a new CD – not that they’ll get a chance to listen to it but it’s a nice thought. Or a really posh candle / something else equally decadent and unnecessary) instead of for the baby

#15 A load of really nice thank you cards (try here) and stamps. It’s one of those things they’ll feel they ought to do but might be a hassle to get together, during those first few weeks

For those with kids:

#16 If you’re long on time but short on money, give friends-with-kids a ‘token’ for babysitting (make sure you agree a date there and then or follow it up). Only really a good idea if they have okay kids. Who sleep a lot

For kids:

#17 Biscuit cutters, like these, together with a recipe and the ingredients. I’m slightly obsessed with biscuit cutters (even though I rarely make biscuits)

#18 Mars bars, Rice Krispies, golden syrup and some cake cases to make their own Mars bar krispie cakes

As a leaving / retirement gift:

#19 A handkerchief on a stick filled with £1 coins (like in the cartoons / Enid Blyton films when someone’s running away from home – know what I mean?)

#20 A travel book (100 things to do before you die, or similar. That’s not meant to sound morbid by the way.)

Helpful at all? I hope so.

xx Nomad Thief xx

 

 

 

Shopping inspiration #3

#1 Metallic bag, super cool. £14.99 from H&M

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#2 Not that I’m obsessed with animal heads or anything, but, this mirror from this online shop is quite special. Thanks Amelia for letting me know about it. Am really tempted, but I think it might be pushing my husband’s patience – what with the huge wild boar’s head already staring down at us..

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#3 Cropped jacket, £34.99 from H&M. A cheap (but effective) way to get the Lahore look.

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#4 Now the photo doesn’t do this justice – apologies – but I promise you it’s worth checking out. A cross between a cardigan and a coat, this piece is super wearable, and mixes edgy with femininity brilliantly. It feels lovely on, and the zips are heavy and nice quality. £95 – Warehouse.

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#5 All that shopping surely calls for a snack. Tyrrells popcorn. The sweet and salty one (I haven’t explored the others). You can get it in Waitrose. Seriously, try it. I got through 3 packs within a couple of hours last week. That’s roughly 15 servings. It’s seriously good, and seriously addictive. That’s way too many seriouslys.

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