Pearls and Pinks

This lengha was *The One*. I came across a picture of it on Instagram and totally fell in love – I knew it’d be perfect for wedding season!

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For those of you who don’t know, a lengha is basically a combination of a skirt, top and scarf. It’s traditionally worn at desi weddings, as an alternative to a sari or a trouser suit.

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On heading to Birmingham I found the exact lengha I’d seen online, and bought it pretty much immediately! It was semi-stitched, which was great because it meant I could have it made exactly how I wanted it; the only downside was that it’d take a little more time and effort to have it put together. While I chose to wear the jacket with the net skirt, I also had a pair of matching trousers sewn as an alternative – which I can’t wait to style!
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I wanted to keep my jewellery simple and classy, and so I borrowed my Mum’s pearl set and added a few rings.
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I love that the Asian fashion industry caters so well to the modest market; it makes it so much easier to dress stylishly without having to bare a lot of skin. There is a classiness to modest dressing which desi clothes carry well.

I can’t wait to make the most of dressing up at the next asian occasion!

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Fatima xx

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A Mermaid in Wonderland

With graduation over, the final thing that there was to look forward to was the Graduate Ball!

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After spending weeks deciding whether we were going to go to the ball – as is always the case with group plans – my friends and I finally got organised. We bought our tickets about two weeks before the day – which didn’t leave me with very much time to find a dress!

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The Ball was to be Alice in Wonderland themed, which had me all the more excited! For those of you who know me, it’s one of my absolutely favourite novels. I wrote a chapter of my disso on Through the Looking Glass and it felt so apt that the Ball that was inspired by something that was such an integral part of my degree. After spending a solid week trying to find a dress that would fit the theme, I scrapped the idea after I remembered a dress I’d picked up from Quiz a few months ago. I absolutely loved the fishtail shape and the sequins, and I already had a pair of matching shoes! While it didn’t entirely convey the childlike whimsy that Alice in Wonderland evokes, if anyone asks, I was channeling Time from the recent Tim Burton film.

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I halal-ified the dress (made it more modest) by picking up some grey leggings to layer under it; Southall is perfect for finding leggings in pretty much any colour you need. I also wore a long-sleeved grey t-shirt under the dress to cover my arms. The dress was super blingy so I kept my accessories simple, with a stone bracelet, a velvet choker and a pair of studs.

My inner literary nerd was super happy at seeing all of the characters and themed decor – particularly the Queen of Hearts and the Cheshire Cat! I couldn’t get a lot of good quality photos inside the venue, because the lighting wasn’t ideal, but here are some of the ones that didn’t turn out too badly.

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Tip: If you’re looking for the perfect dress for your Grad Ball, make sure you pick something that’s very you. The Ball will  be the last defining event that you’ll associate with uni, and it may well be the last time you see a lot of the people that were in your year. It’s your last chance to show people who you are or what you want to be remembered as, so make the most of it!

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Fatima xx

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Ruby & the Roses

So, after rushing home from my best friends’ graduation, I got changed, put on some lippie and headed straight to my bhabhi’s mehendhi! 

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I opted for this indo-western dress from KBT in Birmingham. It was originally semi-stitched, but required a lot of work to get it just right. On sewing the dress it just didn’t sit right, and so my mum brought in each individual panel on the skirt, to bring in the waist without altering the overall shape.

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While Asian outfits usually call for a tonne of jewellery, I pared down my accessories a little for this event. Instead of going all out, I wanted to put together a look that was classy and centred on the dress itself.

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Dress – KBT
Bangles – A market in Spain
Earrings – BHS

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Fatima xx

Best Friends’ Graduation

Most of my best friends graduated together a few days after I did, and with zero intention of missing out on the day (the FOMO is real), I turned up too. Jokes aside, after having shared years of deadline induced stress, God knows how many chicken burgers, and a tonne of good memories, it was such a proud moment seeing everyone in their graduation gowns :’).

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While I went for a light and bright dress for my own graduation, I wanted to change things up for my friends’ graduation. I wore this dark, berry and black jumpsuit, and opted for beaded accessories to compliment the detailing on my outfit. These heels were a MISSION to walk in, but I absolutely loved them – the things we’ll do for fashion eh?

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Despite being a load of fun – and much less stressful than my own graduation day – it ended up being a super busy day! After having lunch with my friends, I headed home to change and then went straight to my cousin’s fiance’s mehendi – on the other side of London.

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram: @fatcat_95

Fatima xx

 

 

Graduation

My graduation day was pretty hectic to say the least. I was up at 6:30 and ready to be out the house by 8:30 – but my family? Not so much. Long story short, we got to my ceremony just in the nick of time and it was smooth sailing from there – thank god!

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The search for a dress was a MISSION. As the outfit that was to end such an important chapter of my life, I wanted something that was very me – it had to be colourful, and it had to be quite modest. It needed to have sleeves, be at least mid length, and have a high neck – which is surprisingly difficult to find! After weeks of scouring the shops, my mum decided to make one for me.

With only a week left before my graduation, we headed to Walthamstow and found this really pretty floral fabric. After two days of solid work, my dress was complete – and it was exactly what I wanted!

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Piecing together the rest of my outfit was pretty straightforward. I opted for my trusty nude heels (to keep the trip-ups to a minimum), a plaited pink necklace, my watch, and an anklet. For my face, I kept everything pink-toned and glowy.

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It was such a lovely day!

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram: @fatcat_95

Fatima xx

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BOLD.

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I’m not usually one for simplicity – more is more when it comes to jazzing up an outfit. However, on first seeing this outfit, I actually really liked that the details were pared down.

While I’m totally aware the colours probably couldn’t be any bolder if the designer had tried, I like the way this loudness works with the general simplicity of the dress. The pleats give it volume and shape, and the lace sleeves make for some welcome detailing.

I wore this outfit for a semi-formal family gathering, so I kept my jewellery simple with a stone set I picked up in Spain. I love finding quirky jewellery in markets as they’re really unique, and they let me bring a little individuality to everything I wear.

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Fatima xx

Bejeweled Jacket

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Lately, I really love jackets on Asian outfits – they’re super flattering and seem to exude class. It was love at first sight when I came across this outfit in a little store on Ilford Lane!

While I’m not usually drawn to green, I thought this pale shade worked so well with the bright pink. I loved the champagne thread work and stone details on the jacket, and the contrast between it and the more simple kameez (top).

Like all love stories, this one needed a little work. Most Asian outfits will always need a little tailoring – they tend to come in a smaller variety of sizes and so the fit will rarely be perfect. I had the kameez brought in at the waist, so that it would sit more flatteringly.

It was my cousin’s mehendi so I wanted to go all out on the sparkle! What I love about champagne details is that you can get away with breaking the rules and wearing both gold and silver simultaneously – granted, both these colours work best on the muted side. I wore a pink stone set, with matching bangles and some gold rings. I finished off the outfit with a beaded silver clutch and some glittery, champagne-toned heels.

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P.s. I included some unedited pictures of my makeup because I’ve been playing around with the Morphe 35O palette and I absolutely LOVE it!

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Outfit – Style Mantra
Heels – New Look

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram: @fatcat_95

Fatima xx

Antique Accents

I have been to – what feels like – 101 wedding events this summer, and it has been so great!

As a total romantic, it makes me happy to take part in a couple’s big day, (and all the smaller events that lead up to it) especially when it’s been my close cousins that have been getting married. Besides my hopeless romanticism, it’s also been nice having so many events to get dressed up for ;).
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I am all for bright colours and bold prints, but every now and then I think it’s nice to pare things down a little.

There’s something classic and timeless about a white sari, and this one – which actually belongs to my mum – felt like it had been calling my name for a while (sorry Mum). While white fabric can sometimes wash out warmer skin tones, what I love about this sari is that it’s more of a creamy, off-white shade, as the warmer undertone better compliments my warm-neutral skin tone.

I really liked the antique gold, cut-work border; while stone detailing often makes for a more decadent outfit, the sequins and thread work on this sari worked in a more understated way. I drew attention to the gold detailing by wearing some similarly accented, bold jewellery, which completed the look.

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Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram: @happilyintothewardrobe | @fatcat_95

Fatima xx

Mehendi: Ruby anarkali

IMAG9567edIMAG9583edVIDEO0184_0000028886ed1IMAG9514edIMAG0775edThere’s no better way to make a statement than with a little red – or a lot in this case. 😛

For my cousin’s mehendi I wanted to wear something that’s dressy but allows for a lot of movement, and this anarkali was perfect for that. I love the contrast between the black velvet and the red georgette, and chose to accentuate the antique gold embroidery in the outfit by wearing Indian jewellery in the same shade. Whilst I really like the long length of the dress, I didn’t want to look swamped by the swathes of fabric; I wore a pair of large high heels to elongate my silhouette.

I carried the golden tones in my outfit through my makeup with a mid-toned golden smoky eye and gold highlighter. I finished the look with a red lip.

Anarkali – India
Shoes – Unze

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram: @happilyintothewardrobe | @fatcat_95

Fatima xx

Beach huts and Bangles

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IMAG0070 IMAG0065The past few weeks have been crazy busy; with weddings, work and uni starting I really haven’t had the time to post!

Despite Autumn having arrived, it’s not too cold or too dark to say goodbye to the beach just yet. 😉

For a slightly chilly day at the beach, I decided to keep my outfit casual but covered. I paired a slightly oversized white shirt with a pair of boyfriend jeggings. I threw on a printed pink and navy, kimono-style cardi, and a headband in similar colours.

I couldn’t help but dress up the look with some silver rings and a chunky ornate bangle.

Sunglasses – River Island
Shirt – India
Jeans – Internacionale
Kimono – Asda
Sandals – Spain
Bangle – Morocco

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram: @happilyintothewardrobe | @fatcat_95

Fatima xx