Outfit: make hay while the sun shines

So, in the UK fashion blogger world I think we can take ‘make hay while the sun shines’ to mean ‘put on a dress as fast as you can because it’s briefly stopped raining – GO GO GO!!’… That’s, of course, precisely what I did on Sunday when summer made a meek reappearance. I had the perfect dress for such an occasion, as it happened, and the ideal location for some sunshine too.
The dress you’re about to see was custom made by Manuela, who owns the new online shop The Apricot Rose. When she got in touch to ask if I’d like to review one of her pieces I could hardly say yes quickly enough – I’ve never had anything custom made for me before, let alone a gorgeous vintage-style dress. The best part of this for me was being able to specify the skirt length. I spend far too much time going back and forth to my local tailor to get things shortened, but with this dress it was perfect for me from the word go – a petite girl’s dream! Obviously, the fit on the waist and bust was correct too, but I’ve covered up some of the lovely yellow lacing with a belt because I didn’t explain to Manuela just how petite I am, hence the waist didn’t hit me in quite the right place and the shoulders are a touch too broad… I also slightly rolled the sleeves up to make a more flattering length on my stubby arms. But I don’t think the slightly wrong proportions are a dealbreaker – and hey, it’s not like I’m not used to that with dresses! Manuela is very happy to take extra measurements and guidance over email so you don’t make my mistake. And if you haven’t already seen it yet, check out Helen Mae’s review of another of Manuela’s styles to see how they should fit average-sized ladies!
Another great thing about this dress is that unlike so much of the cheap reproduction styles that are out there right now, it’s fully lined. It’s a rare dress of mine that has lining – what a luxury! It really does make a difference to how the skirt hangs, but I did, in case anyone wonders, add the PUG canvas underskirt to give some extra oomph. Something I’m not used to, however, as so much of my wardrobe is modern, is what it’s like to get out of a long-sleeved dress with zero elastane. Let’s just say I nearly had a panic attack. Still, totally worth it.
And yes, the moment I chose it I realised I’d gone from owning zero white summer dresses to two (see the first one) in the space of a couple of weeks, but I’ve decided I’m a fan. They just look so good in fields – who doesn’t want a dress that looks good in a field?
50s Inspired Vintage Broderie Anglaise Dress by The Apricot Rose


50s Inspired Vintage Broderie Anglaise Dress by The Apricot Rose


50s Inspired Vintage Broderie Anglaise Dress by The Apricot Rose


Vintage 50s wicker barrel shaped bag


50s Inspired Vintage Broderie Anglaise Dress by The Apricot Rose


50s Inspired Vintage Broderie Anglaise Dress by The Apricot Rose


50s Inspired Vintage Broderie Anglaise Dress by The Apricot Rose


50s Inspired Vintage Broderie Anglaise Dress by The Apricot Rose


50s Inspired Vintage Broderie Anglaise Dress by The Apricot Rose


50s Inspired Vintage Broderie Anglaise Dress by The Apricot Rose


50s Inspired Vintage Broderie Anglaise Dress by The Apricot Rose
Belt: Dorothy Perkins (similar)
Shoes: Clarks (old)

And now it’s time for another of the short videos that are popping up on here from time to time. When the whim strikes B, we just go with it, although usually he springs the camcorder on me as we’re heading out the door, giving me no time to think about you know, actually filming something interesting rather than me just walking around. So you get me walking around a lot. On the plus, you get to see more of this pretty dress and the amazing wheat field we were in… I pass this field nearly every day on the train to and from work and it was quite surreal finally standing in it. This country can’t do good weather well, but it’s got fields covered. You can also see my friend, The Wind. The sun might be out but you can bet he’ll still be there, messing my damn hair up at every turn. I don’t know if I’m imagining it, but I feel like it’s been really windy this year and I’m so ready to never feel a breeze again at this point.



  1. August 6, 2015 / 12:47 pm

    What a lovely dress and I'm gutted that the torso length wasn't correct – silly CiCi!! I love love love this dress on you and I want one too ahahah! Also very much enjoying the photos – what a summer perfection you are! The video makes me really really wanna meet you too soon! I really wanna take photos together with you ahahah

    • August 6, 2015 / 12:54 pm

      It is indeed silly me – it's not like I don't know I'm short πŸ˜‰ My bad, I meant to drop you an email by now – I'm on it… Although believe me it takes a fair few photos before I look ok πŸ˜‰

  2. August 6, 2015 / 1:06 pm

    These pictures are so lovely!! What beautiful lighting (and beautiful model!). the dress looks so summery and light! Delightful!!

    • August 7, 2015 / 12:16 pm

      Thank you! We had to really play around with the lighting to get it right, so I'm glad for any nice words about that!!

  3. August 6, 2015 / 2:01 pm

    The fabric choice and the details on this dress are so lovely.


  4. August 6, 2015 / 4:53 pm

    Oh my goodness, this is just perfection – both dress and setting! I've had a couple of dresses custom made, and it's just such a treat to be able to put something on and not instantly find a ton of things wrong with it: it does start to spoil other "normal" clothes for you after a while, though! Off to check out the website now – I have a feeling this is going to get expensive πŸ˜‰

    • August 7, 2015 / 12:11 pm

      Anything I don't have to immediately hotfoot it down to the tailor's with makes me fall instantly in love with it, basically. And yes, now I do feel totally spoilt and never want to have to amend a hem ever again!

    • August 7, 2015 / 12:12 pm

      It's so much more fun knowing you're going to get something that will essentially fit right – even though this one wasn't perfect in places on me, it still looks one heck of a lot better on than 99% of other dresses do when I first put them on! x

  5. August 6, 2015 / 11:15 pm

    Ugh, stop being so gorgeous! Seriously, you look stunning. Beautiful dress, and you chose an absolutely dreamy location to shoot it. You certainly did right by Manuela, because you're absolutely making me want to run out and buy one of her lovely creations.

    • August 7, 2015 / 12:12 pm

      Don't worry, it's only on photo days πŸ˜‰ Thanks for your lovely comment though – and I think making you want to run out and get one is probably the highest praise I can receive πŸ˜€

  6. August 7, 2015 / 1:57 am

    Enchantingly pretty dress and photos! This is such a dreamy, sweet photo shoot and video, both of which I completely adore. Hopefully we'll have a bit of good weather left still once Tony returns and I can make a whole lot of hay, so to speak, to compensate for not being able to do any shoots while he was away this summer (and before another woefully cold Canadian winter sets in).

    β™₯ Jessica

    • August 7, 2015 / 12:13 pm

      I remember how much you liked my photos from last summer where I was in a similar straw-type field πŸ™‚ Fingers crossed you've still got some warm weather hours left when Tony's back x

  7. August 7, 2015 / 6:22 am

    Hahah I love the "make hay while the sun shines" saying because I can totally relate! Many times this summer when I wanted to take pictures, as soon as I was ready, it would either start raining or I would hear thunder! Super frustrating, especially after you are all set and ready to take them πŸ˜›

    But I am so obsessed with this outfit + photographs! Gosh, you are just so pretty! I am going to Pin this on my pinterest, I love it so much <3

    And one more thing if you are interested-I am running my first giveaway on my blog- $30 E-Certificate to Forever 21! Check out my post for more details and a chance to win! I would love to see you enter and possibly win! πŸ™‚

    Olivia | Her Name Was Celebration

    • August 7, 2015 / 12:14 pm

      That's basically what happens every time I plan to take photos – our weather forecasts never get it right here! My bigger problem is the wind forecast though – if it's much windier than it was for these photos, it's pretty insurmountable!

      Thanks for the tip about the competition – I'm sure some of my other readers will like the sound of that too!

  8. August 7, 2015 / 9:37 am

    Beautiful dress! I love the fabric so much, and that yellow edition. Dress length is often a deal breaker for me, so I think it wonderful to be able to choose it!
    White dresses with cute purses suit you perfectly, so you really should love those πŸ˜‰
    Oh, and the video is lovely as always πŸ™‚

    A Golden Picnic

    • August 7, 2015 / 12:15 pm

      It's usually a dealbreaker for me too – as in do I keep it and pay to get it altered, or do I give up and send it back!! Thanks for your lovely comment πŸ™‚

  9. August 7, 2015 / 9:57 am

    Everything about this dress is divine, and you can see the quality even in the photos. It suits you perfectly! Kx

    • August 7, 2015 / 12:15 pm

      I completely agree – I think you can too! x

  10. August 7, 2015 / 11:04 am

    You look absolutely marvelous. That dress is amazing and it looks absolutely stunning on you!
    x Angela // missangellane.blogspot.com

  11. August 9, 2015 / 2:15 am

    Sooo pretty CiCi! I adore your entire outfit, but really the photography + video is perfection once again! The lighting and location are so gorgeous ~ I love "in a field" shoots, so for me, everything about this is #blogginggoals.

    Also, this dress looks so stunning, I think white really is such a great color for you. And once again, handbag envy, that little wicker piece is too cute~! ❀

    bonita of Lavender & Twill

    • August 10, 2015 / 12:27 pm

      Ah thank you – I had this location in mind for so long that it was really satisfying when everything turned out how I pictured it would!

      I never thought of white as one of my colours, but I'm definitely warming to it. I think the wicker bag will appear again, it's just too cute not to πŸ™‚ x

  12. August 10, 2015 / 12:46 pm

    These photos are absolutely stunning Cici, you are just breathtaking! This outfit is so gorgeous and I love the setting. Oh and I just love the way you style your hair! x

  13. August 11, 2015 / 8:53 am

    The dress is lovely and it suits the setting perfectly!! X

  14. August 16, 2015 / 2:01 pm

    Perfect dress for wandering about in fields, I love all the glorious colours in the photos. It is a very pretty dress, how exciting to have something custom made.

  15. August 19, 2015 / 5:58 pm

    What a darling dress on you! I love the eyelet lace detail throughout it!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *