A Fabulous Winter/Summer Dress: And My Current Favourite Bakeries

Greetings everyone.  A few weeks ago, my husband and I celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary.  As my brother-in-law said, “You get less for murder”.To celebrate the best decision we ever made, we decided to go out and do what we do best; eat and drink.

As we decided to approach our ultimate destination on foot, the starting point for an outfit decision were comfortable flat shoes. I accompanied my flat boots with an easy-breezy dress by All Saints.  This really is a fabulously versatile winter/summer dress, as I have currently paired it with a sparkly polo top for warmth, and in the summer I can dispose of the undershirt and replace the boots with nice sandals.  This dress is flowly in all the right places, and the front tie can be tied or left open. I finished off the look with a crossbody bag for ease of movement and my trusty leather jacket (and a black coat on top for extra warmth).

We have a lovely evening and it was a great reminder that the best things in life are the people that surround us. Speaking of lovely things – let’s talk about my current sugar crushes.  I am a legendary consumer of baked goods and I am constantly exploring the fares of various bakeries around town. An oldie but goody that I have recently rediscovered is Gail’s.  Their cherry and dark chocolate scones and petite honey cakes are amazing. The olive bread with big chunky olives and their garlic bread with big chunky pieces of garlic are must eats and last but not least I can’t seem to get enough of their toasted turkey and cheese sandwich with spicy mayo.

The other bakery that is a current favourite is Ottolenghi.  Their lemon and blueberry cake is amazing in that both flavours come through distinctly and create a magnificent symphony in your mouth.  The flourless chocolate and coconut cakes are equally amazing in their own right.

I hope you have a sweet rest of the week.  Thank you so much for visiting isha’s Verdict.

Clothes and Accessories:

Dress – All Saints and All Saints  

Sparkle Polo Neck Top: Warehouse

Cross Body Bag: Yves Saint Laurent

Boots: Massimo Dutti

Leather Jacket: Massimo Dutti

 

Things You Wanted To Know About: Laser Hair Removal (and a pretty dress)

For quite a while now, I have wanted to start a new series where by talking to an expert in a field, I can provide my readers some useful information about procedures and processes that form part of our ‘overall fashion equation’.  To this effect, I present my first “Things you wanted to know about” post about laser hair removal.

Autumn is upon us and the warm weather is ebbing away.  After a few months, we will all be looking forward to spring and then to summer, waiting for the sunshine to reign supreme once again.  Summer is lovely – wearing dresses is so much fun and feeling the warm air on your bare legs is a great feeling. However, there is one aspect of summer that is not fun – making sure that arms and underarms, for example, are hair free (if that is the choice you make).  I have always found hair removal to be a pain in the ___ and it was always a chore to maintain my dress legs, especially in the summer. I admit I am a lazy person and procrastination combined with laziness proved to be a constant nightmare when it came to hair removal issues. Then, during my expat stint in Mumbai, my friends convinced me to try laser hair removal.  What can I say, it was one of the best decisions I have ever made when listening to friends (which has not always been the case)!

Yes, there was a cost and time commitment involved but the results have been totally worth it for me.  Therefore, in case any of you have been considering laser hair removal but not made the final decision, I thought I  would ask Tejal Patel who runs a laser hair removal centre to provide some general guidance. This is the perfect time to explore laser hair removal so that by the time summer swings around again  – hair removal issues will not be on your list of things to care about!

Tejal Patel runs SYLCLASE – LASER HAIR REMOVAL FOR THE FACE AND BODY and is certified as a laser hair removal practitioner.  She has kindly answered the following questions for Isha’s Verdict:

Q&A with Tejal Patel

  1. What are the different kinds of laser hair removal available on the market?
    There are two types of hair removal. Laser hair removal and IPL hair removal ( intense pulse light).
  2. What do you specialise in?
    I specialise in laser hair removal.
  3. What are the main advantages?
    First and foremost,  laser hair removal is the most affordable and effective solution to reducing unwanted hair from any part of the body – leaving your skin feeling smooth.
    Laser hair removal is now a well-established treatment alternative to electrolysis, shaving, waxing and depilatory creams.
     – No more stubble, itchy regrowth stage and in- grown hairs
     – Feel confident; wake up in the morning and open your wardrobe without not having to worry if your underarms or legs are hair free
     – No more embarrassing or insecure moments of facial hair showing
  4. What parts of the body can you do?
    One can laser every part of their body except for the delicate areas around the eyes.
     – Full face and neck
     – Shoulders, stomach, back, nipples
     – Underarms, arms, hands, and fingers
     – Hollywood, Brazilian, buttocks, bikini
     – Full legs, feet, toes
  5. Is there a minimum age requirement for laser hair removal?
    The minimum age for laser hair removal is 18. Then, one can say all hormones are settled for the treatment to work.
  6. When is laser hair removal not recommended?
    There are a list of medications that if one is using then laser hair removal cannot be done.
     – If you are pregnant or breast-feeding
     – If you have had breast implants then that area should be avoided
     – If you have had permanent make up done on your face then work an inch away from that area
     – Laser with caution if one has braces ( however the upper and lower lip can still be lasered)
     – Avoid laser two weeks before and after a sunny holiday due to pigmentation and a suntan
     – Avoid laser 48 hours minimum before and after swimming, contact with chlorine
     – Do not laser with any traces of makeup, deodorant or creams and lotions on. This can cause burns to the skin if not removed completely
  7. How many sessions do I need?
    We recommend six to eight sessions. However, every individual is different and every body part and its hair growth cycle is different.  With some parts of the body, the treatment may work within these sessions and others may take a little longer.
  8. How much hair will come back?
    Gradually the hair will grow less and much thinner and finer. The skin will look smooth, silky and hair free.
  9. How much will it cost?
    The cost is dependent on which part of the body you are treating and if more than one area is treated, a discount is offered.
  10. Where are you based? 
    I am based in Brighton and Hove.
    Our address is:

    Sylclase

    7 Benett Drive, Hove, East Sussex, BN3 6PL

    TEL: 07391 221221

    Website: www.sylclase.co.uk

     

Clothes and Accessories:

Dress – And Other Stories

Jacket – ASOS

Watch – Burberry

Shoes – Aldo

Boho Chic: Fringed Kimono Worn Two Ways

Fashion is ever evolving and that ‘newness factor’ has a distinct attraction.  However, every once in a while I will look at a magazine article displaying the latest trend and think, “This is crazy – how many people are really going to put this on and venture out on the street!”

I must admit that this was my initial reaction to the ‘kimono trend’ when it started a few years ago.  I envisioned myself looking like an extra in an opium den from a B grade Chinese movie, pouring drinks in a velvet fringed kimono!  Then I saw this kimono, tried it on, and loved the floaty feel of the fabric as well as the movement of the fringe when I walked. I decided to be a risk taker and give the trend a chance!  I am so glad that I did because not only does the kimono work with so many outfits but it serves as a great coverup when I am not sure of the weather or temperature at a given destination.

The fashion moral of the story: Like so many things in life, you have to give certain looks a chance to see if they work for you. If you never try new looks, you run the risk of getting stuck in a fashion rut and while personal style is an individual choice, it stills need to grow and evolve to be at the top of its game.

I have styled this kimono with jeans and high heels, as well as with a dress and flats,  to high light the versatility of this kimono.  There are some beautiful kimonos on the market currently and I am hoping to find this one a companion in my wardrobe this season. I hope you enjoyed this look and thank you for visiting my blog.

Reminder: You can listen to my very first podcast on Globalise-Asian. They are going to have very interesting speakers in the future so please check out their website www.globalise-asian.co.uk for podcasts by and for the Asian community.

 

(Clothes and Accessories: Kimono – ZARA (very similar – MANGO), White top – Topshop, Dress – H&M, Suede Bag – Elizabeth and James

 

Stylish Sale Acquisition: Industrial Green Midi Dress With Pink Wedge Sandals

You know that buzzing sensation you get in your brain when you hear a really good idea?  It’s that moment when the proverbial light bulb goes off in your head and you think, “what a fabulous idea”, why has no one thought of this before! This is exactly what happened to me when I first read about  ‘Globalise-Asian’, the new Podcast especially put together by and for the Asian community, settled in the UK and the World over. Globalise-Asian is the brain child of Gagan and Vatsala, two talented and vibrant individuals who I recently had the pleasure of meeting.

I had a fabulous time in their company recording my first ever podcast and they are clearly two professionals who are very passionate about their product and their platform.  l have always loved the human stories that surround us on a daily basis; the profound lessons and side-splitting humour that exist in our normal lives is the most interesting story of them all.  A podcast where I can hear my fellow global Asians’ life stories is just such a brilliant idea! Please find below an introduction to Globalise-Asian in their own words:

An Introduction to Globalise-Asian

“The concept of this podcast came about quite recently when I, Gagan, a Banking professional and Vatsala, a Medical Affairs specialist happened to meet over coffee. We both felt the need to bring professionals and others with varied skills and interests from the Asian diaspora together. It was also apparent that the few platforms that allow networking opportunities were clearly limited in reach to make any meaningful impact.

As listeners of various podcasts ourselves, we thought Globalise Asian will offer the ideal medium to attract and showcase the incredible expanse of skill set and commendable initiatives and success stories of the Asian community; i.e. Yourselves.

You can participate in several ways. As a speaker, you can use this space to either talk about your profession/business/initiative or just share your inspirational stories. On the other hand, as consumers of the series, your contribution as valuable feedback and support will help us grow what is now a humble community effort to the next level. The advantage of this creative, interactive digital medium truly presents endless opportunities.

The weekly podcast, post-production will be approximately 30 mins per episode. We have now interviewed several professionals, and people representing various backgrounds and interests. This is an ongoing process as we develop a growing library of podcast episodes which, much like any other podcast, will be accessible from iOS/android devices via the podcasts apps and also on our website. On our website, the link for each episode will be made available starting with the first episode on 23 April. We would love to hear from individuals who wish to join us as potential guest speakers or those wishing to get involved in other ways. As an effort geared solely for the benefit of the wider community, based on your suggestions and feedback, we will be flexible to evolve the format of the show as we go along. Welcome and enjoy listening to Globalise-Asian.”

Globalise-Asian podcast goes live on 23 April with its very first guest, Isha from ‘Isha’s Verdict’ (www.ishasverdict.com).

You can connect with us on:
contact@globalise-asian.co.uk
Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/globaliseasian
LinkedIn : https://uk.linkedin.com/in/globalise-asian-336549138
Website : http://www.globalise-asian.co.uk

 

I am a huge fan of the oversized trend and even the ‘kind of big on you’ trend really appeals to me.  I love this slightly oversized pale green dress as it reminds me of a classy boiler suit and the fabric and design add an edginess that is hard to pin down. There are two other reasons I love this dress: 1) With its long sleeves, it is ideal for the transitional weather we are currently experiencing 2) I bought this dress on sale for £13.94. Lets face it, nothing gives a retail therapy high quite like buying a dress you love on sale!  I have paired it with one of my favourite wedge heel sandals (which unfortunately did not cost £13.94) and a striking black and white clutch. I have rounded off the look with a black cotton swing coat that I have had for many years and works exceedingly well on a warmer spring day.

I hope you have enjoyed this lookbook and thank you so much for visiting my blog.  Don’t forget to tune in to hear Globalise-Asian’s first podcast episode on the 23rd of April  –  featuring yours truly.

(Clothes and Accessories: Dress – H&M, Sandals – Gucci, Clutch – Dune, Coat – Ted Baker )

Boho Beauty: Cold Shoulder Swing Dress With an Embroidered Fringe Bag

You know when you have so many different things to do that you find it hard to concentrate on one task because half your mind is on the next task and half is wondering what to cook for dinner and the other half is hoping the ‘United’ passenger is OK  – making you have a one and a half mind that is still not functioning as well as just one mind should! I blame it on Easter break and having the children at home; if I have to ask them to shut the fridge door one more time I will lose my entire one and a half mind in one go.

Nevertheless, even when all my synapses are firing haphazardlessly, there is always time to talk about clothes.  I love this easy breezy dress and can see myself wearing it all summer long.  It lends itself so effortlessly to a bohemian look and gives me another opportunity to use my Delhi Khan Market vacation purchase fringe bag to great effect.  I have lookbooked this bag previously in this post (Mirror Work ‘Jhola’ Bag: Vacation Finds With Everyday Wear) and to my delight I am discovering just how versatile it is.

I hope you enjoy this look and have a great rest of the week.  Thank you so much for stopping by!

(Clothes and Accessories: Dress – ASOS, Bracelets – Isharya, Follie Follie)

Black Dress Series: In a Structured Workwear Dress

Hello everyone! Let’s discuss workwear today. When I started my first ‘real job’, many, many years ago, I am not sure that I paid much attention to my work wardrobe. Absorbing the general guidance provided on the internet and from what I saw around me, I bought a couple of suits and separates and stepped boldly into the working world. However, there was one problem.  Many of the clothes I had purchased were uncomfortable when worn all day long and frankly,  not very stylish.  Don’t even get me started on this bright purple skirt suit I once owned…

Today, if I had the opportunity to plan a work wardrobe, what would I do differently?

I think the three most important factors that I would consider in planning a well-functioning work wardrobe would be:

Are the clothes appropriate for my particular work environment?

Are they comfortable to wear all day?

Do they represent my personal style statement?

The dress code that is acceptable at a particular place of work is relatively easy to access after a few weeks of working there. While some environments are more rigid and formal, others are more easy-going in terms of what qualifies as workwear. In my opinion, even traditionally formal work environments require comfortable clothes on a daily basis.  I found being uncomfortable at work was  unsustainable – it had the potential to affect the quality of my work and as well as the quality of my life.  Everyone has a personal style statement but overall, showing that you take pride in your appearance is the underlying foundation of being stylish at work. In my opinion, workwear does not need to be dull but a certain restraint is necessary unless you work in a creative environment where you are encouraged to express your self through your clothes without hesitation.

As work wear, I am a great fan of the structured form of this dress.  It strikes a delicate balance between being chic and comfortable, which can be harder to find than one may think.  The lack of embellishments on the dress make it a great canvas for adding a few bold accessories to complete the look. I have added a bold geometric cuff to the outfit to channel confidence and style. I love the gradual ombre’ gold effect on this patent mid-heeled court shoe and as it is tastefully done, I think they can be worn to work.  Wearing heels to work is not be everyones’ cup of tea and even if they are, we all have those days when we are not in the mood to strut around in heels. Therefore, I have also ‘lookbooked’ the dress with flat brogues that are both comfortable and stylish at the same time. I have to say that brogues are my ‘most likely to go to’ kind of non-heeled work shoe.  They make any outfit look smart and there are so many lovely statement brogues available on the market.

I hope you enjoy this look and thank you so much for visiting my blog.

(Clothes and Accessories: Dress – COS (similar), Heeled Shoes – Karen Millen, Brogues – Finery, Handbag – Prada)

Relaxed Chic: In a Long Sleeved Midi Dress and Boots

What exactly is a relaxed look? In my opinion, it is one in which I don’t feel tense, self conscious or uncomfortable. Technically, this definition would encompass a variety of outfits, including one’s night clothes.  Perhaps it is the need for women to feel relaxed in their clothes that has resulted in the ‘pyjama look’ trend that is sweeping the high street. I am a sucker for a relaxed outfit that’s easy to wear all day long. While circumstances dictate that relaxed attire is not always appropriate,  it is crucial when you are having ‘one of those days’! We have all had ‘one of those days’, when the mirror is being decidedly difficult by portraying an image that is not to our liking, we have had a bad night with the children or we just feel bloated. On these days, it becomes really important to be able to wear clothes that are going to provide a ‘cloak of comfort’ all day long, whether at work or at play. So what is one way of achieving this without compromising on style?

When I am having ‘one of those days’, one of my go-to garments is a long-sleeved midi dress.  These dresses tick all the boxes for me in terms of comfort, versatility and style.  The gentle drape of these dresses help hides various lumps and bumps, imagined or real. The length of these dresses is flattering and the long sleeves help keep in the warmth. Finally, these dresses work well with a variety of shoes including boots, flats and heels.

I love the tiger print on this dress and the fabric belt is a great help in sculpting the waist. I have paired the dress with boots in a similar shade to allow the aubergine bag to stand out against the dress. Finally, I have added a quirky coat that always seems to work when none of my other coats suffice!

Below are some midi dresses that I like the look of. I hope you enjoy this look and thank you so much for reading.

relaxed-warehouse
Warehouse
relaxed-hm
H&M
french-connection relaxed
French Connection

 

 

 

 

 

(Clothes and Accessories: Dress – And Other Stories, Boots – Marks and Spencer, Handbag – Kate Spade, Coat – French connection (this is a similar one), Ring and Bangle – Ishariya)

 

Welcoming 2017: In a Pink One Shoulder Dress

It is 2017 and with the new year comes all the hope and possibilities of bettering our own lives and those of others around us.  I have been told that pink, as a colour, denotes love for one self as well as love for others. Therefore, I thought it would be apt to start the new year by ‘lookbooking’ a pink dress in order to symbolize the importance of remembering to love ourselves as well as others this year.

I am a huge fan of this dress – I think it has a simple sophistication that is timeless and it is unapologetically pink! The black and white clutch makes for a striking addition to the dress and the black and white sandals work well to tie the overall look together.  I have a love affair with slingback sandals and I think they are more often than not the ideal shoe for a nice party dress. The best part of this dress – it is 100% wool and the material feels fabulously luxurious.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for the love and support you have given ‘Isha’s Verdict’ over the past year and hoping for your continued affection and encouragement in the coming year. Thank you for taking the time to visit my blog and a very happy new year!

(Clothes and Accessories: Dress – Whistles, Clutch Bag – Dune, Sandals – Reiss)

Cheap and Cheerful: Supermarket Yellow Sweater Dress With a Black Leather Jacket

Hello lovely readers! It has become considerable colder in London during the course of this week and I have decided that the central heating in my house must remain functioning at all times.  My house is like a sauna, my family is wandering around minimally clothed and maximally annoyed but I am in a state of bliss!

Once cold weather arrives, sweater dresses are my favorite alternatives to jeans/trousers.  They are My Siteseasy to wear, keep me warm and there are a multitude of options to choose from. I picked up this solid mustard yellow dress at Sainsbury’s a few weeks ago and I love the pop of colour and sunshine vibes it brings to everyday winter dressing. I have paired it with black boots and a black leather jacket for a great day look.  The jacket is a hybrid leather jacket with a puffer style back and I love the versatility that the unusual style offers.

I went to Sainsbury’s yesterday and they are having a 25% off all Tu clothing (ends 5th December) at the moment. I cannot find this dress on their website anymore but I did see it in store at 50% off the original price making it a great purchase for a tenner!

I hope you enjoy the styling and have a lovely day.  As always, thank you so much for visiting my blog.

(Accessories and Clothes: Sweater Dress – Tu Clothing at Sainsbury’s, Boots – Dune Black, Jacket – Andrew Marc, Handbag – Burberry)

 

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Oversized Dress: With a Blazer and High Heeled Boots

I have a true fondness for oversized clothes.  In fact, in my opinion, the oversized trend is the best thing that has happened to real women’s clothing in the last few years! I definitely have mornings where I do not want to wear anything that is tight-fitting and welcome a more relaxed fit.  As a child I could not understand  why so many older women would wander around in their kaftans/momos all day and talk so fondly about these loose-fitting shapeless garments. With age comes knowledge and I now have a new found appreciation and respect for the ‘relaxation wear’ favoured by so many aunties.

I have lost count of the amount of women I have heard in my lifetime wax eloquent about the unbridled joy of taking off their bra at the end of a busy day.  I think the same principle applies to the pleasure of swapping your day wear with comfortable loose-fitting clothes at the end of a long day.  They makes one feel so unrestricted, so free…till you hear a voice saying, “Mummy – the toilet paper fell in the pot- can you take it out?”….and straight back to the confines of reality you come…Wearing an ‘oversized’ day look can ensure that lovely feeling of comfort throughout the day, without compromising your style statement.

I think the key to making oversized clothes look good is to balance the overall proportions of the look. I find that adding a more structured piece to the styling and high heels are a great way to make the daytime ‘oversized look’ work for me.  This trapeze style dress is a great oversized piece that is both comfortable and has a bright cheerful print to boot.  A fitted blazer adds an interesting element and the high-heeled boots work fabulously in balancing the overall proportions of the look.

I hope you enjoy this look and thank you so much for reading!

(Clothes and Accessories: Dress – Monki, Blazer – Zara, Boots – Charles and David, Handbag – Dooney and Bourke)

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