The Kimono: A Perfect Transition.

Every year we face the all too familiar challenge of transitioning our wardrobes from Summer to Autumn. It’s an awkward phase of having to don jumpers and jackets every morning, and peeling them off when you’re boiling by mid afternoon. It’s incredibly difficult to dress appropriately until we’re well into Autumn and permanently in a thick jumpers and tights – but I have a few tips to make this transition a little easier!

We don’t need a whole new wardrobe, we can update our SS14 favourite pieces and wear them through Autumn. That floral co-ord you adored this summer? Don’t put it away just yet, simply add a pair of low denier tights, a leather jacket and a pair of boots and you’re instantly updated for Autumn and ready to tackle the bi-polar elements. The sleeveless dress you’re about to hibernate? Team it with a plain long sleeved top or a cute blouse and you can wear it all year round. 

But my ultimate favourite transition piece? The kimono!

Throughout summer, the kimono was our staple: we draped it over our floral maxi dresses, our Levi cut-off’s, and our dainty co-ords. We emulated festival goddesses to perfection, and we have the Instagrams to prove it. But now that festival season is over, is it time to retire our trusty garment? Certainly not. 

ARK Clothing has a selection of kimonos that are perfect for this transition period, these are my favourites:


Hearts and Bows Avril Monochrome Kimono | Hearts and Bows Kuebo Floral Kimono  


Kiss the Sky Velvet Black Kimono | Ark Floral Kimono

This Autumn is all about dramatic textures and soft layering, so consider teaming a longline floral kimono with dark jeans and heels for a flawless relaxed look. For an injection of 90’s Gothic Glamour, try layering a jet black kimono over your favourite velvet dress and a pair of chunky soled boots.  

I’ll be investing in something like ARK’s super versatile longline floral kimono, which would look amazing worn over jeans, high shine leggings and grungy dresses! It’s also in the sale and just £18 – style steal alert! 

Will you be layering with a kimono this Autumn? Post your outfit links below! 

48 Hours in Ibiza: The Swimwear365 Challenge

What better way to escape the increasingly dreary British weather than to jet off to the fabulous party island of Ibiza? Swimwear365 recently challenged me to blog about how I would spend 48 hours in Ibiza, and I was more than happy to oblige and spend my evening day dreaming! 


Cala Conta
My first stop would without a doubt be Cala Conta. How could I resist starting the holiday without taking in the sun, sea and sand at Ibiza’s number one beach. The dress code here is simple: a gorgeous bikini (Boohoo) and a retro floppy hat (Luisa Viaroma). I’d spend the morning sipping mocktails and catching some vitamin D! 

Shopping in Ibiza Town
Ibiza isn’t exactly famed for it’s shopping, but I for one am excited to find out more! An array of bead stalls, vintage boutiques and markets await – there are plenty of bargains to be found and treasures uncovered! I love vintage and one-off pieces, so I’d definitely take a trip to Hola Hola and Kurru Kurrur for some sartorial steals! A Topshop bralet and a Forever New midi skirt would be perfect for bargain hunting (teamed with a Coach bag and Zalando sandals for practicality, naturally!). 

Party time
Ibiza is practically synonymous with nightlife; a Mecca for music lovers. The island’s Pacha nightlcub is apparently the place to be, where I’d plan to party until the sun rises! H&M faux leather shorts and an eye catching Chicnova kimono would be the perfect uniform for dancing ’til dawn!


D’Alt Vila & Ibiza Museum of Contemporary Art

With the beach and bar-scene out of my system, I’d reserve day two for absorbing some culture. First on the list is the beautiful old town of D’Alt Vila. I’d spend the day shopping, dining al fresco and sightseeing! Word has it, you can climb to top of the town and witness the spectacular panoramic views. What better than a floral maxi dress (Vero Moda) and tan accessories (Debenhams and Nordstrom) for a day spent as a culture vulture. Not forgetting this gorgeous Olivia Burton watch and an H&M denim jacket in case it turns a little chilly. I’d also love to visit the Ibiza Museum of Contemporary Art and take in some exhibitions! 

 Relaxing by the pool

And finally, I’d end my 48 hours with blissful relaxation by the pool. All I’d need is an ice cold drink (little umbrella optional), a good book and I’d be in heaven! I adore this Swimwear365 polka dot swimsuit – I’d ramp up the va va voom vintage vibes with a classic floppy hat (Debenhams) and Lancome‘s red lipstick (accessories: We Like Fashion, Fossil and Accessorize). 

What do you think of my 48 hours in Ibiza? What would you do differently?

Fancy a chance to win 48 hours on the party island itself? Take part in the Ibiza Challenge before this Friday! 

Cats and Co-ords

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For me, 2014 has been the year of the co-ord. I’m not complaining mind – anything that makes me feel like a) an extra from Clueless or b) a beach-side babe from the 1950s is always a winner in my books. So, surprise surprise, I’ve just added another to my collection! This the fourth (oops) co-ord I’ve bought this year, but it’s something a little different to my usual pastel hued girly pieces – this is a little smarter and certainly more glamorous than you might be used to seeing on me.

I found this embellished co-ord in the Dahlia sale – it was an impulse buy, but a very good one – I remember admiring it months ago and how often is the item you covet 50% off? Exactly. By the way, the sale is still on, and this co-ord is still for sale, just follow the What I Wore link!

A slightly more substantial co-ord is the perfect transition piece for the strange weather we’re having – the bare legs ensure you’ll never be boiling, yet the decent thickness of the weaved material keeps you warm in a way that cotton simply won’t. When Autumn creeps closer, I’ll be donning a pair of tights (to hide my blindingly pale legs) and a leather jacket, and voilà – AW14, here we come! 

What  I Wore:

Co-ord – Dahlia | Hat – New Look | Shoes – New Look (similar).

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The Great Blogger Bake Off – Classic Cookies


Welcome to week two of The Great Blogger Bake Off! This week’s theme is ‘biscuits’ and after a little bit of pondering, I decided to bake my world famous (slight exaggeration) chocolate chip cookies.

These are classic style cookies (I love a retro bake) and make the perfect addition to any gathering- or even as a cute little present for a friend! They’re also ideal comfort food and after the terrible news about Robin, an indescribably important and beloved element of my childhood, I think I’ll be taking a cookie or two and watching Hook to commemorate the laughter he brought to the world.

This is a recipe I’ve perfected over the years, much to the delight of my family and friends. Apparently these are the tastiest cookies around, so try out the recipe yourself and let me know what you think!

Much love,

Nikki x



  • 225g flour
  • 100g light brown soft sugar
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 125g butter, softened
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 200g chocolate chips/chunks


  1. Cream together your sugars and butter. Add the egg and vanilla.
  2. Sift the flour and salt, add to the mixture and then add your chocolate!
  3. Cover bowl with cling film and place in fridge for 30-60 minutes to firm a little. You can skip this step if you wish.
  4. Pre heat over to Gas Mark 4/ 180C.
  5. Add small round shapes of cookie dough to greasing papered baking tray and flatten slightly. Leave plenty of space between each cookie!
  6. Cook for 7-10 minutes depending on how gooey/crispy you like them. I find 8 minutes is perfect for me! They look undercooked when you remove them, but trust me – they’re done! 
  7. Leave on the baking tray for a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack – I often add mine with the greasing paper still underneath! Make sure they’re hardened or they’ll fall through. Messy. 
  8. Pour yourself a nice glass of milk and enjoy!


Beaches and Fireworks

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Carousels and Crystals

It’s nearly the end of my holiday – boo!

Thankfully, it’s been a beautiful week – one day of which was spent in the delightful Weymouth. Picture your stereotypical coastal town: stretches of sand, turquoise sea, pastel houses, donkey rides and an endless parade of tourist shops selling crystals, ice cream and souvenirs. That’s Weymouth. 

I spent the afternoon strolling around the quaint streets, eating Frozen Yoghurt and watching the boats in the quayside. Pretty sweet! 

4610911What I Wore

Dress  – Dorothy Perkins | Floral crown – New Look | Shoes – New Look | Bag – Accessorize | Necklace – Accessorize

Summer Fireworks

And to finish off the day, we headed to Poole Quay for a round of fireworks. When you live by the sea, this is a weekly event over summer. I set my camera to a long exposure to capture the crazy patterns – take a look! 10 11 12 13

Got Ink? TTTattoo.

Have you seen my new ink?


Okay, I lied – it’s not real. Gotcha!

When TTTattoo asked me if I’d review their new temporary tattoos, I jumped at the chance. I’m fascinated by body art and despite having no ink of my own, I was excited to join the club – even if it was just for a week! 

Tattoos seem to be everywhere at the moment and now that one third of young people have them, they’re far from the sailor/soldier/rock star/bad ass symbol they once were. Everyone from accountants to catwalk models sport them now. They’ve basically become the ultimate accessory – as big a part of festival fashion as Hunter wellies, an oversized fedora hat and chunky ethnic jewellery.

I have a lot of concerns about real ink – how do I know I’ll like it in 10 years? What about picking a great design? I change my mind all the time – I can’t keep a haircut or a WordPress theme for more than a couple of years. Committing to something forever is pretty terrifying. Oh yeah, and it hurts! 

So whether you want to sport some cool body art for an event, to freak out an elderly relative  or to test out a design you’ve come up with before you get it inked for real, TTTattoo’s temporaries are the perfect solution.


The Design

The best bit about reviewing these beauties was getting to design my own – any excuse to crack out the pens! I chose an anchor for my design, I love the aesthetic and what it represents: the sea. I’ve always loved and lived near the sea and therefore anything nautical has a special place in my heart. I even added a heart to the design! I drew the anchor to look thin and symbolic, so its overall look is light and feminine – or it would most definitely look very wrong on little ole me. I’m actually pretty pleased with how it turned out! 

If you don’t fancy designing your own, TTTattoos have a whole host of great designs – like the beautiful vintage style feathers featured at the start of this post. The vintage camera, the array of finger tattoos, the arrows and the compass are also personal favourites!

6The Tattoo

This works in exactly the same way as our beloved temp tattoos from childhood: peel off the plastic, slap it on your skin, apply water and hold for twenty seconds. The transfer worked perfectly – no patches or sticky bits. It remained shiny for an hour or so, but then faded to look more like a real tattoo. If you look very closely in bright light, you can see a faint outline from the transfer, but generally speaking, it’s completely realistic. I’ve been wearing it all day and it shows no sign of peeling off. 


Maybe wearing this for a couple of days will convince me to get a tattoo for real – or perhaps I’ll just repurchase some temps!

Check TTTatto’s Pinterest for your inkspiration!

The Great Blogger Bake Off – Chocolate Fudge Muffins

great blogger bake off

To celebrate the long awaited return of The Great British Bake Off, I’ve joined the aptly named The Great Blogger Bake Off!

We’ll be baking each week, matching the theme of the GBBO’s episode. This week’s theme? Cake!

I’m no Mary Berry, that’s for sure – but this is my recipe for some delicious Chocolate Fudge Muffins! It’s insanely easy and takes barely any time to bake!


  • 50g milk chocolate
  • 85g butter
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 85g light muscovado sugar
  • 50g golden caster sugar
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 egg
  • 150ml soured cream
  • Topping: 100g of milk chocolate, 100g of white chocolate, chocolate stars.


  1. Melt the chocolate, butter and milk in a bowl – stir and leave to cool.
  2. Mix the flour, bicarbonate of soda and sugars together. In another bowl, beat the egg and soured cream, then pour over the dry ingredients and add the chocolate mixture.
  3. Spoon the mixture into 10 muffin cases and heat on gas mark 5/ fan 170/ conventional 190 for 20 minutes.
  4. Cool the muffins on a wire rack, melt the remaining chocolate for topping and decorate!


I’ll be back next week with some delicious biscuits!

By The Seaside

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Hello! I hope you’re all having a lovely week!

It’s my week off this week, so I’ve been fully embracing the world of no alarm clocks, late nights and day trips. Needless to say, I’m having a wonderful time!

I’ve written myself a little to-do list to make sure I don’t waste my week off with Netflix. Top of the the list was a visit to the beautiful seaside town of Swanage. A couple of years back, I spent many a summer evening here, walking along the sea front, guzzling fish and chips and taking in the sights. It might be one of my favourite past times, and I was long overdue a visit this summer.

Swanage’s relaxed atmosphere, down to earth locals and quaint boutiques make it a pretty perfect place to spend the evening. I never thought I’d say this about somewhere in Dorset, but it’s rumoured to be a great place for celebrity spotting (none spotted this evening though, boo)!

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An evening by the seaside felt like the perfect opportunity to dig out my H&M floppy hat, which I’ve never quite had the confidence, or the right outfit, to wear. When teamed with my Boohoo Bardot crop top and pleated midi skirt, I felt a definite Marianne Faithfull or Faye Dunnaway vibe. In my books, this is most certainly a big winner!

I’ve been toting this Accessorize bag all month (another summer sale bargain!) and it’s definitely become my summer favourite! I’m almost exclusively donning white accessories this summer, what don’t they go with? And, of course, you rarely see me without these River island strappy shoes. Aside from it’s copper emblem that leaves a green imprint on the sole of my foot (just me with this issue?), it’s my perfect shoe. 

Hopefully there will be a few more snaps like these before the summers out – the seaside is my favourite place to be!13


Seasonal Colour Analysis

summer, winter, autumnWhat are your colours?

As a fashion fanatic, I’m always drawn to the new colours of each season: the oxblood and bottle greens of Autumn, Gothic shades of Winter, ice-cream pastels of Spring and tropical hues of Summer. I’m generally willing to throw myself into each sartorial season with renewed excitement, whether it’s lusting after pastel midi dresses or wrapping myself in dark, grungy knitwear. Are you the same?

I’d always known some colours suited me better than others; I always got a lot of compliments in blues, and I never felt my best in browns or super-bright neons (but then again, who really looks good in florescence?). I’m sure we all have some colours we refuse to touch, and certain colours which fuel our wardrobes, but is there a hard and fast way to determine exactly which colours we should be buying and which we should be avoiding?

My Google search led me to Seasonal Colour Analysis.

How does it work?

If you’ve watched enough slightly retro TV, I’m sure you’ll have come across someone referring to themselves as a “Spring” or a “Summer”. That’s Seasonal Colour Analysis. It was huge in the 1980s and I wouldn’t be surprised if it resurfaced as The Next Big Thing in the near future.

It works by categorising people into seasons according to their skin tone, hair and eye colour. Simple, in theory! Cool toned individuals (with blue or pink undertones to their skin) will either be a Summer or a Winter; warm toned individuals (with golden, peachy or yellow undertones) will either be an Autumn or a Spring. Winters and Autumns are “high contrast”, with a vivid difference in hair, skin and eye colour (think Anne Hathaway), whereas Springs and Summers are “low contrast” in colouring (think Cate Blanchett).

Within each season are three further sub-categories, but I think it’s easier to leave the explanation at the four seasons for now! For a full description of the theory behind Colour Analysis, head over to The Chic Fashionista’s page.

You might be reading this thinking ‘I’m clearly this season!’, and it’s very easy for some people – Anne Hathaway is almost the epitome of Winter; Cate Blanchett is clearly a Summer, and so forth. However, some people are harder to categorise – and I definitely considered myself as one of these people!

I’m pale, and my hair is medium-dark – so would that make me a winter? I also have freckles, and my hair can turn a little warmed toned summer – would that then make me an Autumn, Spring or a Summer? I thought potentially I was a Cool Summer, but I was by no means confident in that diagnosis.

Feeling incredibly curious, I spoke to 30 Something Urban Girl, who was kind enough to explain which season I really fall under.

My Analysis

What she said: I think your original hair colour could be dark-medium brown. You’ve got beautiful and clear blue eyes and light fair skin tone with freckles. Freckles indicate you have some warm colouring and you also have contrast on your face like Winters have.

According to your colours, you are probably a Winter (cool colours) woman who flows into Spring (warm colours).

The explanation: I think the Warm Spring and Warm Autumn colours are too warm for you. The Clear Spring palette isn’t bad but I think coral (one of the power colour of Spring) doesn’t fit you so well. The Soft Summer palette is too muted, while the Cool Summer is too cool. I think the Cool Winter palette is a bit too cool as well.

The evidence:


This is me with Clear Winter colours.


This is me with Warm Autumn colours, which is almost the opposite of a Clear Winter. Notice how my skin seems washed out and my eyes look duller when compared with the top picture? This has definitely cemented my distaste for the warmer colours!


These are Soft Summer colours. They’re certainly an improvement on Warm Autumn, but they’re so muted they make me look a little washed out.


These are Warm Spring colours, the warmth isn’t really doing me many favours and they’re a bit too light. I feel like these bring out the imperfections in my skin.


These are Cool Summer colours. Interestingly, I thought I could be a Cool Summer when I was doing my research on Seasonal Colour Analysis. They don’t look awful by any means, but they’re a little cold on me.


And finally, Cool Winter colours, which, as the coldest palette, are too cool.

Colours can be quite subjective and I think there is a tendancy to project your own colour preferences onto other people, but I think it’s pretty clear to see that cool colours in moderation bring out the best in my complexion. Isn’t amazing how much difference colour can make? Perhaps you have your own opinion, and think I dazzle in a different palette (do leave a comment!).

I can see the full range of colours that suit me on 30 Something Urban Girl’s Clear Winter page (there’s a page for every season). My Clear Winter buddies include Zooey Deschanel (yippee!), Alexis Bledel, Katy Perry and Miranda Kerr, so I’m in good company!

This has left me with plenty to think about – for one, I’ll be trying out the colour yellow – this is one of my colours, yet I own approximately zero yellow items. It would be awesome to find a new colour that looks nice on me! I’m also toying with the idea of dying my hair darker, in line with my Winter colouring. What do you think?

Why are the right colours important?

I think my analysis goes to show that wearing the right colours can make your complexion appear brighter and radiant, reduce dark circles and skin imperfections, make your eye colour pop and bring out the best tones in your hair colour. For situations like job interviews, or events where you’ll be photographed, wearing your seasonal colours will ensure you’re maximising your best qualities and will make you feel more confident too! Plus, with a wardrobe of co-ordinating colours, picking an outfit will never be easier!

So, there’s only one question left to ask: which season are you?

Find out now with 30 Something Urban Girl!