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This collaboration was sponsored and supported by Marks & Spencer (Australia) and Shopping Links

I love winter and the opportunity to wear layers – it is something that living in Queensland we don’t get to do very often.

We don’t get to wear layers for long, so I’m always on the lookout for well-priced and well-made pieces… not always an easy task.

So imagine my delight at the chance to work with Marks & Spencer – a brand that is well known for its wonderful quality and great prices.

I have an English mother and she has spoken to me many times over the years about the ‘fabulousness’ that is Marks & Spencer, but I was yet to experience it for myself.

I strongly believe that when you dress well you feel amazing. Wearing something I love definitely puts an extra spring in my step while giving me added confidence.

Life is too short not to wear what makes you happy. If you love colour, wear it. If you love all black, be the monochrome Queen. If stripes are your thing, then buy every striped piece you can find. There should be no rules to fashion. If you LOVE it then WEAR it!

Dressing well doesn’t need to cost a lot of money, you just need to shop smarter and only buy what you really love whether that be a pretty dress, statement heels, a great pair of jeans or whatever else makes you smile.

I’ve been wearing a lot of denim this winter and, while that will never change, I’ve been missing wearing dresses. Dresses always make me feel feminine and pretty and also give me an opportunity to wear a pair of gorgeous heels. Heels of any type are a huge weakness of mine, statement heels an obsession.

Dresses are perfect for our warm winters. They are perfect to add layers for the cool of the mornings and evenings but to remove those same layers for our gorgeous days.

When looking through the Marks & Spencer website, I was looking for dresses that I could wear all year round by simply adding a great jacket or a pair of tights. I think versatility in our wardrobe is important – none of us have unlimited budgets so shopping well and shopping smarter is important.

After combing through Marks & Spencer’s huge range, I finally ended up picking two black dresses – one with an all over floral print and long sleeves with elastic cuffs, the other with 3/4 sleeves and floral embroidery on the shoulders.

M&S Floral Print Drawstring Tassel Shift Dress $68.00 comes with a separate slip (I’m wearing a size 12) – I love to wear my sleeves mid forearm as I have quite small wrists and love to show them.

This dress has tassel ties at the neck. I prefer to leave them loose to create a bit more of a v neck line but you could also tie them up if you prefer. It would also look great belted – a thin black belt would be the perfect addition.

I told you I love shoes and I wasn’t lying I fell totally and completely in love with these as soon as I saw them. They had to have their own close up so that you could truly appreciate the gorgeous embroidery details on the back of the shoe and heel. M&S Block Heel Embroidered Kitten Heel $51.00 (these are in UK sizing – I’m a pretty standard 7 in my shoes and I’m wearing the UK 5 and it is the perfect fit).

The block heel make these quite comfortable to wear even though they are quite high and when the weather gets cold these shoes are perfect to add a pair of stockings to – see below.

M&S Belted Trench with Stormwear $68.00 in blush – unfortunately this colour has been so popular it has sold out but it is  available in navy or red.

This trench is made from Stormwear technology is water repellent and will keep me dry. I’m going to China later in the year and this trench will definitely be coming with me. It also features Buttonsafe technology which means that the buttons are heat fused and won’t fall off and is crease resistant.

My second dress is the M&S Floral Embroidered Tunic Dress $68.00 (I’m wearing a size 12). I love boho feel and the 3/4 frill sleeves is the perfect sleeve length for me.

This dress does have a lining of the same fabric as the dress so no issues with it being see through – I like the relaxed fit. Length wise this hits me just below my knees – I’m on the short side at 161cm so for my taller sisters it would probably hit on the knee.

Below is a close up of the gorgeous green floral embroidery on the shoulders and top of the arms.

M&S Belted Trench with Stormwear in Green $59.00 – OK who doesn’t love a bit of colour in winter. I just couldn’t resist the bold green but if this colour is not for you it also comes in four other colours – black | pebble | navy | light blue.

The prices of both these trenches is amazing and they really are both beautifully made. A trench is such a classic piece I will get wear out of it for many winters. I also can’t wait to wear mine with a simple white tee, denim and my favourite white kicks.

Ordering online without trying on can be slightly scary but Marks & Spencer has a great Fit Finder tool where you can enter all you measurements and it will give you the best size. I used this for my order and found all the clothes fitted perfectly not always easy for me as I have quite a large chest size.  Marks & Spencer offer free express shipping for orders over $200 – I choose is option and received my order in 4 days.

* All items shown here were gifted to me for my editorial consideration.

L~ F
  • When I lived in England M&S was my go-to place. Everything from knickers to food and wine went in my trolley…but let me tell you, I’ve always been partial to a trench – so I would not have been able to resist that blush pink loveliness – I’m not at all surprised the blush has sold out, it’s simply divine!
    Great post my friend, love all of your choices 😘😘

    • I’ve only ever owned a black trench but just love the colours. The blush is gorgeous and I love the shorter length. I was so happy with all my picks, their fit finder definitely helped me judge as I’ve never purchased from M&S before

  • Susan Coleman

    Great blog Karen……the heels are stunning and particularly love the green trench……good choices x

    • Thanks Susan – they are stunning heels, the embroidery makes them look expensive. The bright green trench is gorgeous- I will get a lot of use out of it

  • I can see why that trench coat sold out – love the pink!

    • thanks Janet – the blush pink is just so pretty and not a colour you normally associate with a trench