Carina Vardie

In 2021 I didn't blog much, but I did have a lot of lovely moments and a couple escapes to the seaside. I focused on myself and started to build my dream wardrobe (more about this to follow). However, I did take a lot of cute pictures and posted a lot on Instagram (make sure to follow me there if you don't already). I've added here some of my favourite moments from last year. Can't wait for what this one holds!

Cari x


This year I decided to approach things differently. Instead of having goals and pressuring myself into a list of things that quite frankly could change at any point based on circumstances outside of my control, I want to start the year with intention and wishes. So I created a list of specific things I would like to accomplish this year as well as a couple of fashion wishlists. 

One of the fundamentals I'm keeping at the forefront this year, is putting myself first and working on my own development. It seems so hard at times, where do we even start and how can we do this? I'm always struggling to start and to understand how to even make that first step. It's so easy to priorities your family, partner, work, and put yourself second. I've definitely been guilty of this and I've mentioned this before, but you can't pour from an empty cup. 

I've found the first best step is to be informed, so I've ordered books I have high hopes for. If you're in the market and haven't read these, here's my list

The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving a F**k by Sarah Knight

Good Vibes Good Life by Vex King

Quotations Believe in Yourself by Helen Exley

Manifest by Roxie Nafousi

I've recommended these books already to my friends and anyone who would listen, because I want us all to focus on being the best versions of ourselves, lifting each other and focusing on us. If you have more recommendations make sure to share in the comment section. So set your intentions and create your list, work on it and let's all have the best year possible!

Cari x

The holiday season is one of the most exciting times of the year, for me. I love decorating the tree and making my house all homey and warm. It's something that as an adult I've made a conscious decision of doing every year because of the joy it brings me. The smell of pine tree and cinnamon candles filling the house, being cozy in a blanket on the couch while watching a Christmas movie and enjoying hot chocolate - I'm telling you, it's pure bliss. As far as traditions go, of course there's also at least one Christmas lunch/dinner involved. So how do you pick that perfect outfit? Is there maybe too much pressure on it being perfect? Let's jump right in! 

The most important things to consider are your personal style and your plans. Your personal style because that will determine if you fancy wearing something more put together or casual, and your plans because sometimes those establish the outfit. Unfortunately it would be hard to show up at an elegant dinner in your sweats, not impossible just a hard to pull off without offending your host. I usually tend to be super casual aka in my PJs & robe with a huge mug of tea for the gift unwrapping in the morning, but get dressed up for Christmas lunch. Our family tradition is to cook traditional Romanian food for Christmas lunch and then host. The look I go for has to be both put together and have some level of comfort. Can't really wear your most elegant dress and then go wash dishes in it or have it smell like sarmale (Romanian stuffed cabbage rolls with pork/beef mince & rice, cooked in tomato sauce and lard on a bed of sauerkraut). 

Obviously you need to take in factors such as the climate you're in and location. You might be spending Christmas day on the slopes having lunch at a cabin, so appropriate attire will be needed. Or you might be on a tropical island having a warm Christmas on the beach wearing as little as possible enjoying Pina Coladas. Both sound like a dream to be fair! I would love a white Christmas, beautiful snow everywhere and carols singing in the background. While traditions are fun and heartwarming you can also create new ones. 

Another factor I keep in mind when choosing my Christmas outfit is that I like to dress up. Honestly for me this is just another reason to get dolled up and wear something cute that brings a smile on my face. Sometimes it can be just that. You have a dress / knit / shirt you really like and want to wear all the time so you use this occasion to do so. Fashion is about expressing yourself and giving you the tools to show yourself in the way you want to be seen. Go for it, have fun and wear the look that brings you the most joy.

Cari x



The first question I have for you is what is your vice? Is it bags or maybe shoes or clothes or is it tech? Knowing the answer is very important before deciding on a bag, as it should impact your budget and mentality about this whole process. Naturally if you only need a bag for practical reasons and you're not too fussed about the brand, then there are options for whatever your budget might be and plenty of e-commerce sites to choose from without wasting too much time. However when you're a bag lover/addict everything gets more complicated. The research is part of the thrill, looking for that perfect bag. 


I love bags as you'll be able to tell from my YouTube channel. This is something that probably began in high school when my Chanel obsession started. In my heart I always knew my first designer bag should be a Chanel bag, but just because the heart craves something it doesn't mean it gets it. So let's start!


Establish a budget
Realistically speaking my first bag was a Michael Kors from an outlet next to Vienna. I was a student and couldn't afford the Chanel price tag, no matter how much I wanted it. At the time I calculated what would be achievable for me and did some research on the current bags. To maximize my budget, I decided shopping at an outlet store would be the best decision and it was. I was lucky enough to find a new season bag at a great discount. It was a navy tote that I used everyday for Uni, that bag was well loved and served me well for many years. When establishing your budget, you could also ask for help. An idea is for your family, partner and friends to pitch in for your bag as a birthday/Christmas present instead of gifting you something else. But whatever your budget it, it's important to have it in mind from the beginning when choosing a bag. 
Michael Kors Bag

Timing
Hand in hand with the above is timing. Where you currently are in life makes all the difference on your budget and wishes. You might be a student who can't afford a luxury designer bag or a young professional who has no interest in it and would rather spend their budget on traveling. There isn't a right or wrong version of this. We are all on our own timeline and we all evolve, changing our minds and wishes as time passes. My first luxury designer bag was a Chanel bag that I purchased when I was 26, because I knew once I took the leap into luxury designer it had to be this way. And I only achieved it with help, it wasn't all easy. 
Chanel Black Chevron Classic Bag

Sacrifices
If you're like me and you're obsessed with a bag, no matter what designer or model, then you need to ask yourself if you're willing to make some choices in order to get that dream bag. Needless to say, but this is extremely important: never under any circumstances use all your money for a bag. Do not compromise your health or food budget for a bag. What I'm referring to is making some conscious decisions like making your own coffee at home rather than the daily Pret/Starbucks, preparing your own lunch for work instead of eating out and most importantly, and one of my strategies when purchasing my first Chanel, stop all fashion shopping. I didn't buy any clothes, shoes, bags for over 6 months. It made me realize how much I was spending on shopping and that I was slightly addicted to it, but also that with discipline I could achieve my goal. 
Saint Laurent Baby Sac de Jour in Black

Purpose
When deciding what the bag should be try considering its purpose and ask yourself the following. What will I use it for? Can I wear it on multiple occasions? Does it suit my style and lifestyle? As your first designer bag it should be versatile enough that you can use it from day to night, it should match your fashion sense and wardrobe, and it should bring you joy. Don't fall for trends that you'll get bored with in a few years. Don't choose a colour just because it's fun in the moment. Don't make impulse decisions with your first designer bag. Analyze yourself to know what bag would be the best investment long term. You could always sell it after a few years, but I think the first designer bag is special and I wouldn't sell my first one. 
Fendi Bag in Icy Grey

Market research
That being said, even if you don't purchase a bag with the intent of reselling it, it's always smart to do some market research in case you change your mind. Will it at least hold its value? Is it a sought after bag that you could easily sell should you choose to? Would the resell value increase if you keep all its original boxing? If it has low resell value you could look into purchasing it from a reseller. Watch unboxing and review videos, and a lot of them so you can get a sense of what the bag really looks like or go in store to try it out before making a decision. Be sure you make an informed decision. 

Chanel Small Classic Flap in Red

Which bag should you choose?
And now the moment you've been waiting for. It might disappoint you or might not be what you imagined, but this isn't something anyone should tell you. Don't let other people persuade you about which designer bag you should choose. Take into consideration all of the above as well as analyzing what brands speak to you. This is your first designer bag purchase. It's such an exciting time and it should bring you joy long term. To this day, 4 years after buying my first Chanel, I'm still excited about it every time I wear it. So, from one bag lover to another, choose the one that gives you butterflies. And if you don't have the budget for it yet, wait for it. Trust me it’s totally worth it. 

What was your first designer bag? Or what would you like it to be?

Cari x

My first ever luxury unboxing on my YouTube channel was a Casadei one. It was incredibly well received, honestly creating one of my own that you liked watching and found informative was an absolute dream so if you've seen that video and commented or liked it, thank you. You babes are the best! If you haven't seen that one you can view it here

I still love the shoes I unboxed back then and I love designer shoes in general, as you've noticed throughout the years from my outfit and wishlist posts. Those Blade Casadei pumps are the dream, albeit half a size too small but I still wore them a couple of times and felt super stylish. I might actually add another pair of Blades to my collections, in the future not today's focus. Seeing my love for those shoes, I decided to purchase another pair of Casadei pumps, which I've unboxed for you in today's video. They're absolutely gorgeous and will pair nicely with most things in my wardrobe. 

Another fashion love of mine, that I've been sharing on both YouTube and my blog for years now, has been Self-Portrait. Their pieces are dreamy! There isn't a collection from which I wouldn't buy at least a few items. This dress I've been lusting over for a while now but with the pandemic I kept asking myself if I need it. Especially since we're not going anywhere at the moment. After debating for months, I finally bought it. It will have it's purpose at some point and for now it just makes me happy to have it. Doesn't it drive you insane when you miss out on a piece you wanted? I get super obsessed and then try to find it everywhere. I'm happy this dress won't drive me crazy, as I now have it. 

Make sure to watch the video to find out which dress and shoes I'm talking about, and subscribe to my channel for more weekly videos. 

Have a pink-tastic day!

Kisses 

A new week a new unboxing! How are we liking them so far? I enjoy filming hauls and sharing any details I think could be helpful for you when choosing a bag or shoes, or any clothing piece to be fair. There's a reason I look for unboxings before purchasing any luxury piece, and that's to get as much information possible from someone who purchased it. I also appreciate it better when it's in a video format and I can see how it looks when opening the bag or wearing the shoes. Are those the reasons that interest you as well? Getting more info, seeing the product 'live'? I would love to make these videos as informative as possible for you guys, to provide you with the best knowledge before purchasing an item. Any details you want included in my next unboxings make sure to let me know below! 

This one is really special, unboxing the Sac de Jour bag which has been on my wishlists for years now and the Niki boots which I've been eyeing since 2015. Couldn't be more thrilled! 

Please make sure to subscribe to my channel for more unboxings and fashion videos, it would mean the world to me. 

Have a pink-tastic day!
Kisses

Are you getting sick of all the hauls or not yet? Honestly, there's more coming so I really hope you're enjoying seeing what's in stores and how certain pieces fit, in case you were contemplating getting them. 

Something that has stood at the core of my personal styling, from the very beginning of this blog back in 2012, has been combining affordable high street pieces with luxury items. It's a great way to elevate your style and get the best of both worlds. I've also always encouraged staying true to your style rather than blindly following trends and I'm super proud I've stayed true to this. And I hope every time you see a post or video of mine, you feel confident to do the same. It's something I always told best friends and I treat you the same, and would share the same advice as if we were friends.

For this week's video I have a Massimo Dutti haul for you, sharing some amazing sale finds. These are pieces that will last you ages and can be styled in a bunch of different ways. They're perfect for work or dates or going out. 

Let me know in the comments of my video what you'd like to see next and leave me a ✨ so I know you came from my blog. I would love it if you subscribe and share the love.

Have a pink-tastic day!
Kisses


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