I woke up on my 40th Birthday in the most magical cottage on the Isle of Skye.  Alex was already up & cooking one of his specialty fry ups.  Laying in bed I thought to myself this is it, your 40 years old already what you going to do about it?  That morning I made a decision something big was going to happen within that year something life changing whether it be move house, buy another car, a new job I wasn’t sure but I knew I was going to do something!

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Last week we signed the lease and picked up the keys to a shop, 6 days before I turned 41 but hey ho I was 40 at the time!  It was all complete in the space of a week.  We had no intention of setting up a bricks & mortar store, not really on the radar just now, always just a dream I had for the future.

Sometimes the universe just lines it all up & gives you that wee nudge and you have to jump and the chance.


I walked passed the shop a few weeks back & thought that would be ideal ……. don’t be daft!  The following week it was still available so I phone “just to inquire’ & that was it, the seed was planted! Alex did help me make the final decision as it effects us both,  I’m not afraid to admit  – I did need a wee push, these things happen to other people, people with confidence, I can talk a good story but actually doing something about it – well the we devil on my shoulder says, I don’t have the balls for this !! (sorry, can’t think of another word to describe it)  I now wake up in the morning & my eyes spring open when I remember – OMG I have my own shop!!! It gives me good butterflies in my stomach and a great reason to jump out of bed in the morning but It still gives me the fear when I let it & I think it will for a long time but that’s what keeps me going.  I take my hat off to anyone self employed, it’s terrifying & to those who run huge companies with staff etc I salute you!

In our first week we have cleaned, plastered (well Alex has) and painted the shop, I’ve order the mannequins & rail fittings, extra coat hangers and carrier bags (paper! No plastic if I can help it!)
Still lots to do but I’m loving it so far.   I’ve had kind messages from the shop owners round about which was lovely.  I don’t live in the town where the shop is so it was nice to receive a warm welcoming.

I would like the shop to be pretty enough for people to enjoy but not to fancy as to scare customers away – scared to touch anything or bring kids in. I want everyone to feel welcome.
Timing- It goes for nothing, it’s never the “perfect” time.  It’s one of the busiest months in my full time job with events, Alex is on the road to becoming full time self employed with his own company Xcav8 Landscaping & Groundwork’s.  He’s working 7 days a week just now plus trying to decorate the shop, my timing wasn’t great but if we get through this then we’ll be just grand!

To celebrate my birthday today we are going for a late lunch and then to Edinburgh to watch the Military Tattoo and I can’t wait it’s been on my list for years.  Hopefully we won’t talk shop or diggers to much today but when it’s the main part of your life, it’s hard to switch it off.

I hope to write more on this, real life highs and lows of shop life, something to look back on –  so let this Fashion Journey commence……..

Marlene X


Things are certainly hotting up and with temperatures reaching the high 20’s it’s not something we’re used to in the West Coast of Scotland.  A day here and there but we’ve been really lucky this year & it’s stretching out to last weeks.  It really is fabulous, I’m doing a lot more, I couldn’t tell you the last time we sat and watched TV.  Nights are spent in the garden or at my parents farm for barbecues with my brother & sisters & there kids.

I have a few Summer day dresses hanging in my wardrobe and the rest are usually packed away in my holiday case but with this barmey weather I’ve been reaching for my macbook to see whats available online.

I’ve found a new love for Mango and for the first in a long time, I find myself heading there before Zara. There’s a few from H & M, Topshop & Warehouse too.

  1. Topshop Linen Dress £32
  2. Topshop Maxi Dress £150.00
  3. Topshop Horn Button Mini Dress £34

4. H & M Embroider Dress £69.99

5. H & M Spotted maxi Dress £39.99

6. Mango Contrast Seem Dress £17.99

7. Mango Bow Wrap Dress £29.99

8. Mango Cold Shoulder Linen Dress £22.99

Mango are also adding an extra 15% off if you buy 2 sale items or an extra 20% off if you buy 3 items with code EXTRA

I couldn’t end the post without adding a few of my favs from my own business, could I !!

1 Tallulah Belle Fashion Safari Print Dress £38

2 Tallulah Belle Fashion Match Maker £28

3 Tallulah Belle Fashion White High Neck Sleeveless £14 SALE!

I hope you’ve seen a few you like, enjoy this wonderful sunshine and we’ll chat soon.


Marlene x



You will need –

A loaf tin

140g wholemeal flour, I used Spelt flour

100g Self-raising flour

1 tspn bicarbonate soda

1 tspn baking powder

2 large or 3 small ripe mashed banana,  the riper the better

4 tspn honey

3 large beaten eggs

150ml natural yoghurt



How to –

Heat the oven to 160c or gas 3, grease and line your loaf tin.

Mix the flour, bicarbonate soda, baking power and a pinch of salt. In a separate bowl mix the banana, eggs, syrup yoghurt then add to the dry mix.

Pour mix in to your baking tin and bake for 1 hour and 10 mins or until skewer comes out clean.

Cool on a wire rack or eat warm with butter or some fruit – Delicious!


Marlene x


Easier said than done right……Who cares right?? I do.   I have big issues with this.  As someone who loves fashion, I dreamed of starting my blog for so long but how could I write a fashion blog when I couldn’t post a photo of myself.  Looking back though my personal Instagram the grid was photo’s of my dogs (naturally) my husband and places we’ve visited.  No photo’s of me. I do have a few outfit post now !!

So I threw myself completely out of my comfort zone and booked at shoot with Rachel from Rachel Ross Photography who I can’t recommend enough.  She put me at ease straight away, she was confident and new how to direct the shoot with an amateur like me. I’m usually working in the back ground if we are having shoots with TBF.  And the location – Glasgow City centre, there I was standing in the street, passers by, some giving a strange look, others a wee bit of encouragement with a friendly smile but you know what…….. after the first half hour they became invisible and the only person I saw was Rachel.


Jacket and Shirt Dorothy Perkins.  Bag Guess.  Jeans Next. Sunglasses Victoria Beckham. Boots Sosander.

My wee neighbour passed away recently in her sleep on 99th birthday, her advise for a long happy life was – give it everything,  just give it your best.  If you want it enough – you will work hard enough for it.  She used to tell me that in my visits.

I’m going to do exactly that!  You only get one shot at this………….make it a good un and don’t be put off by others.

Marlene x

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