TMI - More About Me

I've never written anything personal on here before. Mainly because I didn't think anyone would be remotely interested in reading it. However, I've decided you may want to know a bit more about me, since in most of my Instagram pictures I have a 'resting bitch face' and I'm really not one!

I was going to write a long boring post about my struggle with mental health and panic attacks, but I thought it was a bit depressing for NYE. So I've decided to do the TMI Tag even though
 no one tagged me in it...I'm sure I can still do it, although it's rather sad.

Here we go!

(My #best9)

1: What are you wearing
My PJ's (It's 12pm on NYE...)
2: Ever been in love?
Yes, with my lovely husband.
3: Ever had a terrible breakup?
Yes, but learnt SOOOO much, so it was totes worth it!
4: How tall are you?
5"8
5: How much do you weigh? 
As if I'm going to answer that 5 days after Christmas!
6: Any tattoos?
Yes, an 'M' on my foot which is for Mus. If we get divorced I will swear it was for Mum...
7: Any piercings?
Two in my ear
8: OTP?
Too old to know what this means.
9: Favourite show?
Of all time, Friends. Currently, Outlander. Mainly because I fancy Sam Heughan and love history. Oh and The Good Wife as I like to pretend I'm a fancy lawyer!
10: Favourite bands?
Asos, Zara, Topshop how cliche!
11: Something you miss? 
Living in Turkey.
12: Favorite song?
Edwyn Collins - Girl Like You (google it if you're under 25)
13: How old are you?
27
14: Zodiac sign?
Scorpio
15: Quality you look for in a partner?
Compassion, humour, same outlook on life.
16: Favourite Quote?
"A girl should be two things; classy and fabulous"
17: Favourite actor?
Leonardo DiCaprio (someone give him a bloody Oscar!)
18: Favourite colour?
Neutrals as I'm that FUN.
19: Loud music or soft?
Depends on my mood...80% of the time, loud.
20: Where do you go when you’re sad?
Straight to the fridge, then Netflix!
21: How long does it take you to shower?
15mins
22: How long does it take you to get ready in the morning?
I work from home 75% of the time, so 10mins. Brush teeth, sweatpants on and hair up!
23: Ever been in a physical fight?
Nope.
24: Turn on?
Humour
25: Turn off?
Vanity!
26: The reason I Started A Blog
I had just left my job due to anxiety. Wanted to take my mind off it, and be productive!
27: Fears?
Anxiety created a lot of fears. I don't really have any specific fears other than fish! 
28: Last thing that made you cry?
John Lewis Advert!
29: Last time you said you loved someone?
This morning, to Mus or actually it may have been to my dogs...
30: Meaning behind your Blog Name?
I wanted to incorporate Anxiety into my blog name. It's made me who I am. Fashion Panic just sounded better.

31: Last book you read?
Outlander Series - Number Four (can't remember the name!)
32: The book you’re currently reading?
Outlander Series - Number Five
33: Last show you watched?
Keeping Up With the Kardashians (don't judge me!)
34: Last person you talked to?
My mum.

35: The relationship between you and the person you last texted?
My best friend Sarah. She's just got engaged!
36: Favourite food?
M&S Coconut Ice or Chinese food.
37: Place you want to visit?
Scandinavia! I think I have lived there in a previous life, plus my favourite place is Ikea!
38: Last place you were?
In bed...
39: Do you have a crush?
Yes, Sam Heughan from Outlander! (google him!) and Shakira!
40: Last time you kissed someone?
My Miniature Schnauzer puppy, Ruby about 10mins ago.
41: Last time you were insulted?
Yesterday by my dad, telling my he thought I'd had enough popcorn...
42: Favourite flavour of sweet?
Strawberry or Water Melon
43: What instruments do you play??
None. So annoyed my Mum didn't force me to learn one!
44: Favourite piece of jewellery?
My wedding ring (I know)
45: Last sport you played?
Literally cannot remember.
46: Last song you sang?
Justin Beiber - Sorry (ok, so this is TMI is making me look so bad!)
47: Favorite chat up line?
"Add me on MySpace"
48: Have you ever used it?
Yes, yes I have!
49: Last time you hung out with anyone?
I live with my parents, husband, brother and 2 dogs. I am constantly hanging out with people! ARGH!
50: Who should answer these questions next?
If any of them read this, then....Holly, Emma, Gail and Anoushka

So there they are! My 50 TMI questions. I hope it has given you a little insight into my super exciting, glamorous life! Thank you for all of your support this year, I can't wait to share 2016 with you all!


Collaboration With Nobody's Child

So it appears I've not had an outfit post for a while! Sorry about that guys. It's been Christmas, for a blogger this includes numerous events, but I hope you aren't too bored of that type of post as I hope to do a few more soon!
On to my latest collab with a new brand, Nobody's Child. From the get go this was a different experience from working with other clothing companies. The lovely Ryan rang me to introduce himself and explain what Nobody's Child was about, but also to ask me what I thought of the clothes and if I would be interested in being sent a few pieces. Don't get me wrong, other brands I have worked with have been lovely, but to actually speak to a person and not just via email, was a lovely change. I was given a voucher and could chose anything I wanted (another difference!) and go through the real customer experience.

Nobody's Child is fast becoming a big player in the retail industry. As well as working with big bloggers, they have also become a hit with celebs including the massive US girl band Fifth Harmony!

This is my first of two posts from the collaboration, I hope you enjoy!  





I chose this very cool "popcorn and unicorn" jumper. I wanted to pick something I wouldn't have normally gone for. I'm not a massive unicorn sort of girl, but I just loved the fun aspect of the slogan, not to mention the style and cut. It is now a popular staple in my wardrobe, and I have worn it quite a few times! For this post I chose to pair it with quite a casual outfit. I wore this to go shopping, so it's practical, comfortable but has a nod to a few trends. The cut and quality of the jumper is great. It's quite boxy, so it a modern twist on a classic sweater style. I've has so many compliments when wearing it and it is one of my 'most liked' pictures on my Instagram account! The price is great too, just £15, which is always good when so many people like something. 

I teamed it with my wide leg cropped jeans, my new River Island dream boots and my new fave bake boy hat. The baker boy has been back for a while, but not many people are wearing it yet. I'm sure this will change now Vogue put Gigi Hadid in one for the latest January Issue!

I hope you've all had a lovely Christmas, I will be back very soon with more outfit posts and also a personal review of my year in blogging :)

Lauren XO

Sweater: Nobody's Child // Jeans: Asos (similar) // Boots: River Island (in store only)
 Hat: Asos (similar

How to Start a Blog

Before I start, I wanted to make a little disclaimer; I'm not a blogging expert in any way, shape or form, but if this can help you, then please free to read on...

As the title suggests, this post is a bit different to my usual outfit or event posts. I have often been asked how to start a blog, but this past few months I've been receiving an email almost every day asking for my hints and tips. Most people state they hope I don't mind them asking, well it's actually the exact opposite! I feel so flattered when people think I may be able to help them. That's why I thought I'd write a short post on my tips on starting your own blog. 


1) Be passionate; It doesn't matter what subject you want to blog about, as long as you are passionate about it. I chose fashion as I had always wanted to work in the Fashion Industry. When I started I didn't know what career I wanted to end up doing, I just knew I loved clothes. As it turned out, I now write about fashion and it's exactly where I should be, sometimes things just work out.
If you think you may want to concentrate on more than one subject; e.g fashion and travel, that's fine too, just ensure that you stick to a select few so your followers know what they are getting.

2) The actual blog: I use www.blogger.com. It's free and VERY simple to use. It very self explanatory, you don't need to be good with computers or coding, it's literally type text and add pictures. After a year blogging, I bought my domain name (www.fashionpanic.co.uk) but this isn't essential. I was working with brands before my domain, I just personally think it looks more professional.


3) Instagram; Without doubt, Instagram is the best way to 'get out there' with your blog. It's how I work with brands, meet new contacts and where I was spotted for my writing jobs. Everyone has different tastes when it comes to Intsgram feeds. Some people love monochrome, minimalistic themes, others love colourful haphazard photos. The one thing popular Instagram accounts have, are that they all post good quality, well thought out pictures. That does not mean you need a camera! Until last month ALL of my photos were shot on my Samsung Galaxy. It just means that the pictures are not blurry, dark, or bad quality. 

Followers; Gaining followers on IG is an essential part of getting your blog out to brands and PR. Unfortunately this can be a long process. Exactly a year ago today, I had 308 followers. It's taken me a year to get to 6.4k. To some that will seem a lot, to others, not so many. For me it's a lot, and I get to work with fantastic brands and invited to great events. There is no quick and easy way of gaining followers (although some people buy them! watch for the accounts that gain 1000s of followers in hours). The best way is to like pictures, follow accounts you like and to leave comments on pictures. 

Hashtagging: The other way to get your blog to more people is by using hashtags on social media. The best ones for IG are; #fblog #blog #blogger #fashion #instagram #potd #insta #inspiration #vscocam #vsco
These change daily, so make sure you keep an eye out for new ones!

The last tip, and to me the most important one; be nice! You will get far in life if you respect, support and be genuine with your followers (or potential followers). Don't follow people just to get a follow back. Don't comment on pictures if you don't like them. Answer questions you may get asked, and always thank people for their nice words. It takes time and effort to be successful, but if you try and stick with it, it will pay off :)

I would love to answer any more questions you may have, you can email me or leave a comment. I hope this has been of some help to you guys who are contemplating starting a blog; just do it, it can change your life!

Dinner with Radley

Last Thursday a little blogging dream came true. I was asked to a Radley event in Liverpool. When I received the email asking if I would like to join them for an afternoon of "personalisation, presents and fun" how could I say no!? What I couldn't really tell them, was that as soon as I replied to their email, I did a little happy dance around my bedroom (no, I'm not joking). 

I've grown up with Radley. My Mum, Grandma and Auntie are Radley fans and as a little girl I always remember the little Radley dog on their bags. Earlier this year, I was lucky enough to win my first ever Radley bag. It was the beautiful Clerkenwell and it came personalised with my initials. I was absolutely over the moon! I take it everywhere and I get compliments wherever I go.




I had been excited for the whole week leading up to the event. As I live in Manchester, I had also been trying to plan my journey to Liverpool. In the end, my lovely parents offered to take me (yes, I'm 27) so they could drop me off and I wouldn't have problem parking. They had the ulterior motive of getting some Christmas shopping done at the fab Liverpool One.

I nervously made may way to Cote, where the event was being held. I don't usually get nervous, but I didn't know who was going, how many people had been invited and also, it's the first big brand that's asked me to an event! I had absolutely no need to have been, as as soon as I walked through the door I was greeted by the lovely PR girls from Radley; Lauren (who is also a fab blogger!) and Shona, who both recognised me from my blog straight and gave me a big hug. I was the first there, but I noticed that we were sat at a small table for 6. The table was beautifully decorated and on each place setting was our very own Floral Street bag! The three other bloggers joined us shortly after (Laura, Jules and Sally) who were all lovely, we were so busy chatting away, we didn't order our food for a good hour!



(Laura, Me, Lauren, Sally and Shona)

I couldn't believe I had been invited by one of my favourite brands, to an intimate dinner and was sat with five lovely girls. We enjoyed a three course meal and lots of Prosecco, the food was divine! It was so lovely to see the people behind the brand. So many brands these days can be so impersonal, especially with blogging. Lauren said they wanted Radley to be different, and to really get to know the bloggers they worked with, and to choose people who genuinely loved the brand. Well I definitely love the brand and like one of the other girls said, I felt honoured to have been invited. 

After the food, we made our way over to the Radley store, where we would take a look at the new lines and meet a 'special guest'. Yes, as you've probably realised, it was Radley himself! As a crazy dog lady, this had to be a highlight of the afternoon. He (this particular Radley was a girl) was super cute and had a queue of people waiting to meet him. Before leaving, we were given the best goodie bag I have ever received, which included a beautiful watch, mug and of course my Floral Street baby. It truly was the best experience I have had since blogging. Meeting lovely bloggers and the team at Radley was a great way to spend a Thursday afternoon and I can't wait to work with them again.

Culotte Jumpsuit

I don't even have to mention my love of culottes any more. It's an embarrassingly, well known fact amongst my fellow bloggers and even some brands. So it's no surprise I chose to wear them for my 27th Birthday meal out. It was love at first click with this beaut from asos. I religiously refreshed the 'new in' page, waiting to find my perfect Birthday outfit, and this ticked all the boxes! I am not normally a massive fan of jumpsuits, usually because I'm 5"7 and have quite a long torso, which usually ends in the unfortunate issue...near the crotch area (how to put it politely!?) Anyway, this one fit and I felt amazing wearing it! 




It was a bit more than I would normally spend on one item, but I figured I could team it up with so many jumpers and shirts, that it would be a great addition to my wardrobe. For this occasion, I kept it quite simple. I added a 3/4 length plain t-shirt and my absolute favourite River Island sock boots. I finished the look with an oversized clutch, as it was a for a meal out, so I wanted to look a bit more dressed up. The jumpsuit itself is a great way to add a bit of an edge to your wardrobe. Culottes/cropped flares are bang on trend, and tartan was seen all over the AW15 catwalks. 



I love the grey and black tones, they make it slightly more professional looking, I would happily wear this to the office with a white shirt. In the same way, it can easily be paired with some trainers and a roll neck and be ultra casual. It's just a great piece and so wearable, I already have lots of future combos in mind, so stay tuned!

Have a great week, and happy December!

Lauren xo

Jumpsuit: Asos // Boots: River Island // Top: Primark (similar here
Clutch: Primark (simialr here)

Tessuti Christmas Event

So I may have lived in Manchester for the past 27 years, but when I started to attend events, I realised just how little I know about my beautiful city. My latest discovery was the Oast House in Manchester's Spinning Fields. It's such a little gem in the middle of the bustling city, I wouldn't have known it was there if it wasn't for the Tessuti event held in their teepee (yes, teepee!) last week. I was invited to have a sneak peak at the Canada Goose range that Tessuti stock, and I couldn't have wished for a better location.




To start of with, it's possibly the most Christmassy place I have ever been. It is literally a giant teepee, located just outside the main building of the Oast House. It's covered in magical fairy lights and looks like a grown up version of Santa's Grotto. The smell is overwhelmingly delicious, it hit us as soon as we entered the tent (which is a Tardis and actually huge!). We were then showed to the event which was taped off at the back of the teepee near the fire where the lovely Jenn and Natalie greeted us with prosecco. After a catch up and mingle with my fellow Manchester bloggers, we were served what can only be described as a mountain of kebabs, salad, chips, dips and roasted vegetables and it was out of this world! Not to stop at that, it was then finished off with strawberry and marshmellow, chocolate covered kebabs. I suppose I should have taken a picture of the food, but to be honest, we finished it off so quickly I just didn't have time!





So I had better mention the actual reason for the event; the coats and the fab Tessuti. Tessuti have a number of shops up and down the country, as well as a popular website. One of the brands they stock is Canada Goose, which is the well loved brand of incredible coats and jackets. The coats are possibly the warmest I have ever tried on, perfect for this time of year. I fell in love with the black short parker style jacket, and was super excited when I heard we would have a chance to win one of our very own by playing a pub quiz...I was less excited when Jenn told us it was all about Canada, a country I now realise I know nothing about! Nevertheless, it was super fun and brought out our competitive side! Gail and I teamed up and were not exactly great, but a shout out to Natalie who may or may not have helped us a tiny bit... :)

To finish off the night, we were given a beautifully wrapped Christmas present and a personalised bauble, which has to be the cutest, most thoughtful gift form a blogging event! The present included some amazing House of Holland nails which are absolutely perfect for Christmas! It was another great night in a great location, with lovely girls. I will definitely be returning to the Oast House and I can 100% recommend it!

Arndale Centre's Vlogger's Christmas Edit Live

Waking up at 7am on a Saturday morning is not ideal, but it was definitely worth it (especially to see how beautiful and Christmassy the Arndale looked!). I was invited to a special blogger's breakfast at the Manchester Arndale last weekend. It was an exclusive insight into the Vlogger's Christmas Edit Live event which was held at the centre on the 20th and 21st November. The event featured 8 vlogging superstars, showcasing their top 10 Christmas picks. Each vlogger had a category and we were able to watch the Jennie Jenkins from Beauty By JJ choose her top 10 party heels.




We had a lovely breakfast at EAT and were able to ask Jennie some questions about her blog and vlogging channel. It was great to get an insight into the vlogging world. I don't vlog, and don't think I would ever have the confidence to make one! But Jennie, with her half a million subscribers, is running her own channel as well as being a full time blogger. She was such a lovely person, but also a savvy business women and an inspiration to us part time bloggers. I would love to be able to have blogging as my day job!



We then had the chance to watch Jennie run through her top 10, and see the production side of vlogging. It's very technical let me tell you! It was a great event, and as always, lovely to see my fellow bloggers. Before we left we were given a voucher to spend in the centre and a fantastic goodie bag featuring some AHHHmazing NYX make up! I just want to say a massive thank you to Helen and Leanne for inviting me and organising a fab event.

To watch the vlogger vidoes click here :)

#YULEBELIEVE Christmas Party with ARK and Motel

The night's are getting darker, the leaves have fallen and it's finally cold! It may not be December just yet, but everything else is perfect for a Christmas Party. Last week, I was invited to the Ark #YULEBELIEVE Christmas event. The party itself was held at the ultra swanky Abel Heywood Boutique Hotel in the hip Northern Quarter. As usual with me, I had not been there before (I seriously need to get out more), but it's so lovely finding these great places that I would otherwise bypass. Only 20 bloggers were invited and I was fan girling when I knew who the other attendees would be. Most of them I follow on instagram and cyber stalk (so cool). We were greeted by the lovely Natalie and Jenn and copious amounts of prosecco. The room was an Aladdin's cave, decked out in glitter, unicorns and sparkly clothes. 




The event was showcasing the new range from Motel. A brand I know and love, especially from my student days, I used to get a new Motel dress for every night out! The brand is stocked on Ark, and I can fully recommend the range. Their Christmas pieces were stunning, what you expect from Motel, but I think better than before. As well as dresses covered in glitter, velvet and sequins, there was also a great selection of coats. My favourite was the faux suede aviator jacket of dreams. It's bang on trend and looks sooo expensive, I had to double check with the girls that it wasn't real leather and suede!




After some mingling and cooing over the clothes, we enjoyed some gorgeous food and more drinks. I was going to take a picture of the food, but once you tell a group of Northern girls that the buffet is ready, it was demolished within 10 minutes! Once the food was finished and mojitos were drunk (yes more amazing booze) we moved our way back into the party room. It's always so nice when there are only a small amount of bloggers. You really get a chance to meet new people and catch up with friends. I met some gorgeous girls, and it's always great to meet girls who have the same interests and passions as you. Whilst we were chatting, there was a tarot card lady doing readings. Everyone seemed to enjoy it, although I was pretty nervous, but did go for a reading and it was really fun! It was great to have such a different form of entertainment, not many people had had their cards read before, so it was fab to do something new.





At the end of the evening we all were given our secret santa gift. We each had to chose something from the motel range for a fellow blogger, and we had already emailed our choices to the girls before the event. I was quite nervous to see if my blogger liked her dress, I think she did (although it's still staying a secret!). I got this beautiful black sequin number from one of my fave bloggers, Samio. She was so happy that I loved her choice that she did tell me it was her who chose it. So a big thank you to her! It's something I probably wouldn't have chosen for myself, but I love it! I tried it on as soon as I got home, and it is just going to be perfect for the festive sesason. I am in love with the sleeves, they are so flattering and very on trend.

A massive thank you to the Ark girls, Natalie and Jenn, for another fantastic event and amazing goodie bag. I felt well and truly spoilt and very lucky to have been invited. 

THERE IS CURRENTLY 30% OFF EVERYTHING AT ARK!

Scotts Teenage Cancer Trust Gig

 Last Saturday I was invited to a gig held at Hotel Football (Manchester United Fans will have heard of this!). The gig was sponsored by Scotts clothing and Liam Gallagher's band Pretty Green and was in aid of the fantastic charity, The Teenage Cancer Trust



The hotel itself is super swanky and bang opposite Old Trafford, perfect for Manchester United fans, and also a nice change to attending events in the City centre. This was also the first event that I could bring the hubsta too! He normally just takes my street style pictures and gets the odd freebie, but it was lovely to have him tag along with me. The gig was held in the nightclub-esque basement, where we were greeted with prosecco and beer (for Mus). We donated our £5 each (all proceeds went to The Teenage Cancer Trust) and were given our exclusive wrist bands and made our way to find the gorgeous Gail from The Equinox Fashion and her boyfriend. 





The gig featured two fantastic DJs, Peter Hook and Peter Hooton as well as the fantastic band Palma Violets. The gig had such a fantastic atmosphere and the music was great. It was a great way to spend our Saturday night, having fun and raising money for a great cause; 

"Around seven young people aged between 13 and 24 are diagnosed with cancer every day in the UK. They need expert treatment and support from the moment they hear the word ‘cancer.’ We’re the only charity dedicated to making this happen" - Teenage Cancer Trust

Having a young person I know diagnosed with the horrible disease, it is great to know that there is specialised care for young people. 

A massive thanks to Bryony for inviting us both and to everyone who contributed to the successful event.

Collaboration With Blue Vanilla

 Over the past 6 months, my style has been evolving. If I'm totally honest, it's probably been evolving ever since I started Fashion Panic last year. Having to write about my style and why I have chosen certain looks has really helped me to understand my shopping habits. When I started my blog, I literally bought whatever I wanted, whatever style, whatever colour, whatever price. This may sound like a great way of shopping...it's not. I had a wardrobe full of things I never wore, colours that didn't suit me and pieces that did not mix and match. Well, let me tell you; I've had a wardrobe revelation. I went through and threw out/donated to chartity/ebayed everything that I hadn't wore in a year. The result was a massive pile of bright colours, patterns and pieces that were no longer 'on trend'. I realised, that although I agree with the phrase "forget the rules; if you like it wear it", I had taken that too literally and not thought about when I would wear it, or if it would go with anything else I wore. This brings me on to my latest collaboration with Blue Vanilla. I've been gravitating to simple, classic pieces in a neutral colour palette. This may sound a bit, well, boring. Trust me it's anything but. I now have a wardrobe where I can wear everything in it, mix and match pieces and have clothes that will last more than one season. The Trinity Grey Coat caught my eye immediatley. I needed a coat I could throw over anything, be it smart or casual. This is the perfect addition to my new, streamlined wardrobe.



You may have heard of Blue Vanilla. They have concessions in New Look and House Of Fraser, as well as a fantastic online store. I was so excited when they asked my to choose anything I wanted from their collection. I reminded myself of my new mantra "make sure it goes with everything, make sure you will wear it!". Then I spotted this absolutely perfect grey, boyfriend coat. It's over sized and slouchy, making it perfect for throwing on over all outfits. It's super soft and looks much more expensive that the £50 price tag (students get 15% off at the moment!). 




Sticking with my new rules, I teamed the coat with my fave pair of cropped flared jeans and very simple cream jumper. I felt really comfortable, but stylish. I can mix and match everything that I am wearing here, and let me tell you, it's saving me a FORTUNE! I feel like I've finally found my style, OK so it's taken me a while (I turned 27 yesterday) but I have confidence when shopping, and I now always have something to wear!

I hope you like this new look, I would love to hear your thoughts. I've over at @fashion_panic on instagram, so say hello!

See you soon,

Lauren

Coat: Blue Vanilla // Jeans: Asos (similar) // Jumper: Everything5Pounds 
Trainers: Primark (similar) Bag: Catwalk Killa

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