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Saturday, 25 February 2017

The Most Beautiful (And Comfortable) Shoes I Think I've Ever Worn!

Now, let's talk about the shoes I wore in my previous blog post with this gold embroidered cocktail dress...

Roccamore blush suede and gold leather strappy high-heeled shoes

Roccamore blush suede and gold leather strappy high-heeled shoes

They're from Roccamore, and are obviously stunningly beautiful. The blush suede and buttery soft gold nappa leather are a match made in heaven and the triple straps are sexy yet sophisticated. They work beautifully with this dress but I will be wearing them with everything from boyfriend jeans to tailored crops and from midi skirts to floral tea-dresses. The colour combination is soft enough to class as a neutral yet exciting enough to make a statement and the 6.5cm heel is enough to add height but not enough to cause "totter." These shoes both look and feel very well balanced.

Roccamore blush suede and gold leather strappy high-heeled shoes

Roccamore blush suede and gold leather strappy high-heeled shoes

Roccamore blush suede and gold leather strappy high-heeled shoes

What may surprise you though is how incredibly comfortable they are and this is courtesy of an orthopaedic insole. It's not just me that thinks so either, Roccamore heels have been validated by scientific research to be 44% more comfortable than other high heels. The insole was invented by Frederikke Antonie Schmidt, a Danish shoe designer, who was frustrated with having to choose between comfort and design – she wanted simple, comfortable, elegant high heels that she could wear every day. Don't we all? Together with an orthopaedic shoemaker, she designed and developed an insole that would shape the foot to walk as anatomically correct as possible in high heels. It took a year of testing and adjusting, but finally the technology was ready and Roccamore was born in 2015. Because the insole takes up space, every component of the shoe had to be designed and developed specifically, so perhaps unsurprisingly, the fabrication of Roccamore shoes is a relatively expensive one. 
This is slow fashion. The shoes are hand-made in Italy and are very high quality. These are shoes for life, but because of their comfort, they're shoes for living. 


Roccamore blush suede and gold leather strappy high-heeled shoes

Frederikke Schmidt believes in supporting and celebrating other women, an ethos I share wholeheartedly and every one of her shoe designs is named after an inspirational woman. In this case, Annastasia, one of her customers who went through challenging times, but remained positive and tough throughout. 

It's brands like Roccamore that remind me what a privilege it is to be a blogger. Of course, it's wonderful to wear exquisite shoes like this, but to understand why and how a brand comes to fruition and to discover more about the person behind that brand is what adds interest and depth. I'm very excited about this brand and if you're wanting to invest in a pair of handmade shoes or boots that are as comfortable as they are beautiful, do take a look at Roccamore. They're shoes with a heart as well as a sole!

Love Lizzy x

I'm wearing:
*Annastasia golden calf leather suede and nappa strappy shoes, £168, Roccamore
*Black and gold embroidered cocktail dress, £69, (was £119), Kaleidoscope

I'm linking up with:
I Will Wear What I LikeVisible Monday/Turning Heads TuesdayBrilliant Blog Posts/The Saturday Share

Please follow me on Instagram and Facebook for more of What Lizzy Loves

Photographs: Poppy Johnston

Disclosure: *These items were gifted and this post was sponsored by and written in collaboration with Roccamore. My opinions are always 100% honest and the content is always my own. Thank you for supporting those brands that support What Lizzy Loves. 


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Wednesday, 22 February 2017

A Black and Gold Embroidered Cocktail Dress...If Only I Had A Red-Carpet!

It's February and award season is in full swing and in common with many, I like looking at who wore what on the red carpet more than I actually like hearing who won the gongs. For clothes, accessory and jewellery designers, it's big business. Red carpet style is incredibly influential and the value added by having a celebrity wear one of their creations in front of a global audience of millions, is priceless. What we see on the red carpet will be interpreted and translated by high-street brands into their own, possibly more wearable and definitely more affordable collections.

I'm not going to be walking the red carpet any time soon, but I do have some occasions in the diary that require a cocktail dress. This black and gold embroidered dress from Kaleidoscope is an absolute beauty and it has hints of the 1920s, one of my favourite style eras.

Black and gold floral embroidered cocktail dress

Black and gold floral embroidered cocktail dress

Black and gold floral embroidered cocktail dress

Black and gold floral embroidered cocktail dress

Black and gold floral embroidered cocktail dress

Black and gold floral embroidered cocktail dress

Black and gold floral embroidered cocktail dress

The scalloped hem is both pretty and flattering, landing just below the knee and the embroidery stands out beautifully again the black gauzy mesh.

Black and gold floral embroidered cocktail dress

The sheer neckline cleverly manages to both reveal and conceal the decolletage, a whisper of sophisticated sensuality.

Black and gold floral embroidered cocktail dress

I teamed it with these divine blush and gold triple strap shoes to compliment the gold in the dress, (these will feature in a blog post of their own very soon), but I think it could be teamed with a black biker jacket, opaque tights and high-heeled ankle boots for a tougher, edgier take.

Roccamore comfortable high-heeled blush and gold shoes

It's beautifully made and is also available with silver embroidery and with 40% off and priced at just £69 (from £119), it is exceptional value for money...

...Your audience awaits.

Love Lizzy x

I'm wearing:
*Black and gold embroidered cocktail dress, £69, (was £119), Kaleidoscope
*Annastasia golden calf leather suede and nappa strappy shoes, £168, Roccamore
*"Good as Gold" pouch by Katie Loxton, £16.99 at Aspire Style

I'm linking up with:
I Will Wear What I LikeVisible Monday/Turning Heads TuesdayBrilliant Blog Posts//The Saturday Share

Please follow me on Instagram and Facebook for more of What Lizzy Loves

Photographs: Poppy Johnston

Disclosure: *These items were gifted. My opinions are always 100% honest and the content is always my own. Thank you for supporting those brands that support What Lizzy Loves. 


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Sunday, 19 February 2017

Lifestyle, Fashion and Designer Shopping in Kendal

I never forget how fortunate I am to live in Skipton, a small market town on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, popular with tourists from around the globe. I'm not a native of the town, (or even of the county of North Yorkshire being born over The Pennines in Lancashire), but it's been home for more than a decade and I love it.  Because of the wealth of walks, country pubs, and stunning scenery on the doorstep, it's easy to forget that there are countless other equally desirable locations within an hours' drive from here. The Lake District is one such place. Its breathtaking natural beauty and picture-postcard perfect vistas are widely known and it draws visitors for those reasons alone. I think of the Lakes and I think of childhood boat trips between Ambleside and Windermere and of picnics in the rain and I recall ambling in and out of souvenir shops which seemed to only sell fudge, Kendal Mint Cake, walking sticks and all things sheep. Oh and those postcards showing two identical rainy scenes depicting The Lake District in Winter and The Lake District Summer. The Lake District-perfect for walkers, ramblers and family days out but not somewhere I'd think of as being a good place to shop. Or so I thought until I spent the day in the South Lakes town of Kendal.

It was my first visit to the town centre and I was quite surprised to learn that there is a two-storey shopping centre, Westmorland which has its own car park.  As well as being home to well-known brands Topshop, Waterstones and Clintons, it has a wealth of independent retail stalls that are there for several days a week including Floristry by Carmen, Macarons by Al Strong, alterations and homemade cushions and gifts by Naomi at Maid n Found and bath bombs by a very friendly gentleman whose name I didn't note, but you'd be able to follow the scent to find him. 

Flowers by Carmen, Kendal Westmorland Shopping Centre
Floristry by Carmen

Flowers by Carmen, Kendal Westmorland Shopping Centre
Floristry by Carmen

Flowers by Carmen, Kendal Westmorland Shopping Centre
Floristry by Carmen

Macarons by Al Strong, Kendal shopping centre
Macarons by Al Strong

Macarons by Al Strong, Kendal shopping centre
Macarons by Al Strong

Alterations at Maid n Found, Kendal shopping centre
Alterations at Maid n Found

Bath bombs, Kendal shopping centre
Bath bombs at Westmorland Shopping Centre

Topshop, Westmorland shopping centre, Kendal
Topshop

Entrance to Westmorland shopping centre, Kendal
Entrance to Westmorland shopping centre, Kendal

Westmorland shopping centre leads onto the main shopping street. Like Skipton, Kendal is a market town with cobbled streets and yards coming off what is quite a linear main street, and home to high-street favourites Pandora, Joules, Specsavers, Lakeland, Next, Costa, TK Maxx, Toni & Guy plus several independent cafes. 


Well-known brands, Joules and Pandora, Kendal high street
Well-known brands, Joules and Pandora

Independent cafe, Kendal
Kendal has a wealth of independent cafes

Main shopping street, Kendal
The view down Kendal's main shopping street

Almost directly opposite the main entrance to the shopping centre is Elephant Yard which boasts Monsoon, Boots, Laura Ashley as well as Kendal Library.

Next and Costa, Kendal
Well-known brands, Next and Costa

Elephant Yard, Kendal
Elephant Yard

Elephant Yard, Kendal
Elephant Yard

Wainwright's Yard is further along the high street and is where Pizza Express, Booths Supermarket and Maya Maya, (stockiest of both menswear and well-known womenswear brands including Masai and Sandwich), are located. 

Wainwright's Yard, Kendal
One of the shopping ares off the high street

Maya Maya
Maya Maya- menswear and womenswear

There are two beautiful independent lifestyle stores too in Wainwright's Yard. Armstrong Ward stocks popular brands including Emma Bridgewater and Cath Kidston, as well as cards, candles, furniture, toys and cushions and it has a fabulous cafe downstairs with a great menu and a very tempting array of cakes.

Armstrong Ward, Wainwright's Yard
Lifestyle Store, Armstrong Ward

Opposite is La Maison, another delightful lifestyle store selling home accessories, jewellery, mirrors and occasional furniture. I spent a considerable time in both of these gorgeous shops.

La Maison, Wainwrights yard, Kendal
Beautiful interior accessories at La Maison

La Maison, Wainwrights yard, Kendal
La Maison

La Maison, Wainwrights yard, Kendal
Occasional furniture at La Maison

La Maison, Wainwrights yard, Kendal
A wide range of home accessories at La Maison

The end of Wainwright's Yard opens out and from here is access to Marks and Spencer, a florist, cafes and more car parking.

florist in Kendal
Independent florist in Kendal

La Maison, Wainwrights yard, Kendal
Seasonal flowers

Further along the high street, up from Westmorland Shopping centre and on the opposite side to both Elephant Yard and Wainwright's Yard is the Market Square and a little further still is the rather fabulously named Finkle Street. This is where Beales department store is situated. Beales carries well-known brands including Wallis, Moda in Pelle, Warehouse, Fantasie (lingerie) and a whole host more. White Stuff, Phase Eight and Wave, a contemporary jeweller, also sit on this street.

Finkle Street, Kendal
Finkle Street

Contemporary Jewellers, Wave, Finkle Street, Kendal
Contemporary Jeweller, Wave

Perhaps most surprising is that are two Jules B stores; one for gents and one for women, I spent a lovely leisurely time time in the women's and chatted to manager Lisa Jackson whilst browsing the designer collections. An award winning independent retailer of designer clothing and accessories, Jules B in Kendal offers clothing by Victoria Beckham, Self Portrait and Alicia & Olivia, bags by Sophie Hulme and bags by Kendall and Kylie and Michael Kors. I would, without question, make the one hour journey for this shop alone.

Jules B menswear, Kendal
Jules B menswear

Designer labels at Jules B, Kendal
Designer womenswear at Jules B

Designer labels at Jules B, Kendal
The latest collections available at Jules B

Designer labels at Jules B, Kendal, Self Portrait
Self Portrait at Jules B

Designer labels at Jules B, Kendal

Designer labels at Jules B, Kendal
Designer labels at Jules B

Victoria Beckham at Jules B, Kendal
Victoria Beckham at Jules B

Designer labels, Sophie Hulme at Jules B, Kendal
Sophie Hulme handbags at Jules b

Designer labels, Michael Kors, Kendall and Kylie at Jules B, Kendal
Kendall and Kylie and Michael Kors at Jules B

Just off Finkle Street is Beast Banks which has the The Famous 1657 Chocolate House, an Aladdin's Cave where chocoholics can eat, drink, dip and buy chocolate to their hearts'content.

The Chocolate House, Kendal
The Chocolate House

The Chocolate House, Kendal
A mouthwatering array

The Chocolate House, Kendal

Up from this is the Kendal Tourist Information Centre and adjacent to this is another beautiful home accessories and childrenswear store called Forget me Not, which sells sofas, mirrors,cushions and a very tasteful selection of gifts.

Forget me Not, Kendal

Forget me Not, Kendal
Beautiful sofas at Forget Me Not

Forget me Not, Kendal
One of several rooms full of home accessories at Forget Me Not

Forget me Not, Kendal
Accessories for every room in the home at Forget Me Not

Opposite is Hogarth's Jewellers and close by on New Shambles is Iridium Fine Stationery which sells fountain pens, leather notebooks and beautiful artisan paper.

Iridium Fine Stationery, Kendal
Iridium Fine Stationery

As well as this excellent fashion and lifestyle offering, Kendal runs a Courtesy Toilet Scheme. This provides members of the public with clean, safe and accessible toilets across the town. There are several car parks and plenty of places to eat and get a drink.

It was a true eye-opener and I absolutely loved my day in Kendal. I thoroughly recommend a visit. There really is so much more than Kendal Mint Cake and cagoules.


Love Lizzy x

I'm wearing:
* Leopard print jacquard jacket, currently half price at £27, Kaleidoscope
*Italian grey suede saddle shoulder bag, £79, Marks and Spencer
Large silver coloured dragonfly brooch, £17.50, Lizzy O.
Black, taupe and champagne crystal set bracelets, £12.50 each, Lizzy O.
Black top, Next, past season
Skinny jeans, Next, past season
Black leather Chelsea boots, Marks and Spencer, past season

I'm linking up with:
Brilliant Blog Posts//The Saturday Share

Please follow me on Instagram and Facebook for more of What Lizzy Loves

Disclosure: *These items were gifted. This blog post was written in collaboration with Visit Kendal My opinions are always 100% honest and the content is always my own. Thank you for supporting those brands that support What Lizzy Loves.


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