Today marks the start of the school year which means we are back to early wake-up calls and school run routines dominating our lives. All.The.Fun.
After the arrival of Sophie in January, I’ll admit that I found myself slipping into the all too easy routine of promising myself I’d shower after I’d dropped Zak at school, throwing on any old thing (usually accessorized with a bit of baby sick) and shoving my hair up into the ever present ‘Mum bun’ for the school run. So attractive I know.
Once upon a time, I actually took a lot of pride in my appearance (pre-baby naturellement) and I wouldn’t have been seen dead in public in anything less than a full face of makeup and a carefully put together outfit. Granted, I was always on my way to the office and it would have been somewhat frowned upon to turn up in my pyjama bottoms but I loved that freshly styled, ready for the day feeling.
Although admittedly with two kids in tow, I’m a lot more time poor these days, I have to admit that I have fallen into a really lazy pattern of not bothering on the school run. Maternity leave has been an excuse for it and it’s getting a bit old. So, here we are in September once again and I’m determined to get a bit of myself back and start making an effort for the school run and for myself.
Where to start? Aside from washing my hair obvs.
Well luckily for me, the lovely people at Hawes and Curtis have come to my rescue. I was offered the opportunity to collaborate with them and review one of their oh so stylish shirts and I pretty much bit their hands off! If you haven’t heard of them, Hawes and Curtis are heritage British brand that offer high-quality menswear and womenswear collections. Their pièce de résistance is in my opinion their collection of tailored shirts and blouses. My other half is a big fan and uses them for work so I had already heard of the brand previously but I was interested to see if I could find something in a more casual style for myself.
The Hawes and Curtis website is brilliant. I think I’ve mentioned before that one of my pet hates is visiting a badly run, hard to navigate website but this was quite the opposite. Bright, clear and clean looking, I found it so easy to navigate that it was a real pleasure to sit and choose from the fabulous Autumn/Winter collection. It did take me a little while to plump for this pretty white and light, blue floral, semi-fitted shirt because there were SO many lovely designs and styles to choose from but the size guide and ordering process were really helpful and efficient once I’d made my mind up.
My shirt arrived a few days later in a lovely blue and white striped box with the Hawes and Curtis logo on the front. I was pretty impressed with the packaging to be honest. The box, the careful wrapping and crisp folding of the shirt all gave the impression that this was a high-quality, expensive product. Except it was actually really reasonably priced at £29.50. What do you think? Pretty isn’t it!
I knew I was going to love it the minute I clocked that gorgeous blue floral pattern. The quality of this shirt is probably the best I’ve ever had and I’d class myself as a bit of a shirt/blouse expert. Weird I know but when you spend half your life in an office environment you do get to try out an awful lot of them! For me, comfort is everything (refer back to the Mum bun comment above) and I don’t want to be waddling off on the school run wearing a stiff, starched shirt. I needn’t have worried about this little beauty though. It’s made from 97% cotton making it light weight and breathable and 3% elastane, which provides the material with just enough give to make it super comfortable. The cut is brilliant too – close on the bust and out at the waist and hips. Maybe this sounds odd but it is extremely flattering when you are sporting this seasons latest mummy tummy, trust me.
As you can see, I am styling it out with my skinny, high-waist jeans, canvas pumps and shoulder bag today. Comfy, easy and I like to think that it looks like I’ve made a bit more of an effort than usual. I can also see myself doing the buttons all the way up to the top and pairing with a round neck jumper when Winter decides to rear its ugly head. However I choose to style it, the main plus point about this shirt is that I actually feel a million dollars in it and that is a really nice way to start the day. Until someone throws Weetabix at me of course, which happened straight after I took this picture. I can therefore vouch that it washes and reshapes like a dream. All the glamour but when you’re a busy Mama there aint’ nothing getting handwashed let me tell you.
This is my moody, pre-coffee, don’t mess with me Mama-face and is pretty indicative of how I am feeling at being dragged out of the house before 9am. It’s also a really nice close up of the beautiful floral print, which is more to the point.
I’m pretty excited to kick off the school run styling with this Hawes and Curtis number and I will definitely be going back to buy one or two more in some of the other prints. If you are joining me and intending to swap pyjama bottoms and mum buns for something a bit more stylish then I’d recommend heading over to the Hawes and Curtis website and having a little look at their lovely Autumn / Winter collection. It really is very nice.
I’d love to hear what you think of my new shirt (be nice) and whether you’re planning on making a bit more effort for the new school year too. Let me know in the comments box below!
Until next time lovelies – Happy school running!