Life, With Intent: Mini Break Chic

So this month I joined my husband-to-be on his work trip to Malmö. Just a couple of days for an adventure into Scandinavia promised to be a fun and novel experience.

No flash dash around the High Street for me – just a super frugal £18.28 splurge in the local charity shops meant I was kitted out for all eventualities.
Top tip for travelers – Sweden in April is ridiculously cold. Don’t believe the reassuring weather app – the wind off the sea into Malmö freezes you to the bone.
Nonetheless I prefer to travel in a dress – jeans involve belts which have to be removed and metal rivets which set off alarms. I found this great DKNYC dress for just £6 in the Helen & Douglas House shop. It’s a dry clean only – but I knotted my courage and threw it in the washing machine on a delicates wash – it worked out fine as I remembered to reshape while wet.

I traveled comfortably in this great summer dress, wrapped up in a cream M & S coat bought for me from Oxfam a few months earlier and wearing my trusty Kors leather sandals (I refer you back to my pieces on Ethical 366: Style Me In Seconds and #Ethical366: The May Edit – Shoe Spectacular). I even accessorised with three gorgeous glass bead Shaard bracelets, also from the Helen & Douglas House store, on a 3 for £2.50 deal.

But the cold, Scandinavian air (paired with some odd looks from the locals at my bare legs) became too much so I had to nip to a coffee house toilets to change into my jeans.

Jeans are always a great fall back and, having broken the zip on my favourite skinny jeans I’d picked up these blue rag & bone jeans, a snip at just £2.99 in The British Heart Foundation shop before my trip. I also slipped on a sheer butterfly print Wallis blouse, bought for £4 from Helen & Douglas House. Thankfully I also had a pair of Melissa flats, with heart detail, donated to me by my kind and dear friend Isla.

The second and final day I teamed the jeans with a white Cotton Traders shirt which I’d bought from the British Heart Foundation for just £2.79, an easy match for a smart casual look.

• Why not challenge yourself to a mini-break charity shop trip? I’d love to see the results – share them with me via the comments, Twitter or Facebook!

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