Category Archives: Top Ten Lists

Miranda Loves | Fall Fashion Essentials

Miranda Loves | Fall Fashion Favourites

I’ve missed posting my ‘Miranda Loves‘ posts regularly, as I do find it’s a great way to share some of my favourite finds, so I’ve decided to post a ‘Miranda Loves‘ feature on Wednesdays. Today, I’ve gathered a selection of Fall Fashion Essentials. A new season often inspires me to sort through my wardrobe and add a few items I feel are missing, or that will revitalise old favourites.

1/ With the return of back to work (and back to school), this Coast blouse is a great item to add to your professional wardrobe. A smart white blouse is always classic, and I like the pretty details of the long cuffs and ruffled neckline. It’s just the sort of top I would wear – paired with smart trousers – for Parents’ Evening at my school.

2/ For me, autumn marks the return of theatre season, and I’m always eager to find out the new ballet programme at the Royal Opera House. This Kate Spade bag would be such a delightful addition to my theatre-going outfit (I also love this one).

3/ As you know, I swear by a solid-coloured lace dress as a standby for formal occasions, and this Ted Baker dress exactly fits the bill. The colour is beautiful for Fall, and it would look lovely paired with a black blazer and high-heeled ankle boots.

4/ This shimmery green Chanel nail polish makes an interesting change from the usual berry tones and metallics that I pull out in the colder months.

5/ I received the new Zadig & Voltaire ‘This is Her’ perfume when I went to its launch party, and I’ve worn it so many times since (and am complimented on it whenever I do!). It has a lovely mix of jasmine and pink peppercorn to give it a fresh, floral scent, but the added notes of chestnut and vanilla give this fragrance a richness and depth that makes it the perfect choice for autumn. I always find it fun to change up my perfume with a new season, and This is Her has definitely become my go-to choice for autumn (alongside my old favourite, L’Air de Rien).

6/ I’ve written before about how much I dislike dressing up for Halloween, so to my eyes, this adorable hoodie makes the perfect, low-key outfit (and who’s to say you should only wear it for Halloween?!).

7/ Unfailingly, a chic beret is a must-have accessory for autumn, and Agnes B does the classics so well, with an added touch of Parisian je ne sais quoi. 

8/ I wore my old boots to death last winter, and I now have my eye on these very reasonable over-the-knee boots. I think these would look great paired with a knit dress, and I like the chunkiness of their heels, which I always find a lot more comfortable than stilettos!

9/ I’ve fallen head-over-heels for these blackberry earrings (the simple studs are great too). Les Nereides is Parisian jewellery company that I just discovered recently (they have a charming shop in Covent Garden), and I adore everything they do!

10/ Leopard seems to be the pattern this fall, and rather than going for a full blown leopard print dress, I like the idea of adding subtle touches of the print to my outfit. These loafers look so stylish and are also great to pop into your handbag to change into when your heels are killing you. Apparently, Butterfly Twist shoes have thin, flexible soles that allow you to fold up the shoes, making them easily portable.

What are your favourite items from this list? Do you have any particular Fall Fashion Essentials?

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Christmas Gift Guide: Gifts For Him

Christmas Gift Guide: Gifts For Him

The final instalment of my Christmas Gift Guides – Gifts for Him! Here are my suggestions that are bound to make the men in your life happy on Christmas Day:

1/ Who doesn’t know a guy who doesn’t think of himself as a bit of an evil genius? This notebook is perfect for collecting all his thoughts on world domination.

2/ Buy a voucher (or two, if you want to go together!) for a cocktail masterclass at a stylish bar and guarantee a fun night out in 2016.

3/ Any bike-enthusiast would love  this collection of cycling routes, destinations and sights in Europe’s most bike-friendly cities.

4/ For the foodie guy, a great hamper with locally sourced food is bound to be a hit. I love the sound of these Hackney Hampers, which feature products made by food artisans local to East London. The Dalston is the ultimate hamper, including delights such as: Butler’s Lemongrass & Cardonmon Gin, Eat Chic Peanut Butter Cups and Dalston Chillis Chipotle Ketchup.

5/ A handy set of great Aesop toiletries would be welcomed by the frequent traveller.

6/ Fortnum & Mason’s English Spirit Pairing Box – the kind of thing your Uncle would love!

7/ A Christmas jumper that manages to be ultra stylish.

8/ A gift voucher to a great restaurant is always a welcome gift. Brasserie Zedel in London is a great option, as there’s a bar, cafe and restaurant that all offer fantastic ways to spend a voucher.

9/ Drink London: a guide for the man who always likes to know where the closest great bar is.

10/ A tie by Cressida Bell is a tasteful, timeless classic.

Which gift is your favourite?

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Christmas Gift Guide: For Her

Christmas Gift Guide For Her

My latest Christmas Gift Guide: Gifts For Her. I always think Christmas is the perfect time to give luxurious versions of classic basics, as well as fun books to read on the day and some extra special beauty buys.

1/ Love Style Life by Garance Dore.

2/ A gorgeous candle that gives promise of warmer days to come.

3/ My most favourite of perfumes.

4/ A pretty kit for a perfect red lip (always a favourite beauty look of mine in the winter).

5/ I absolutely loved this film, and it makes great easy viewing whilst you’re relaxing on holiday.

6/ Who wouldn’t want some cocktail inspiration?

7/ A classic black t-shirt is a wardrobe staple, and my favourites are always Helmut Lang.

8/ This nail polish collection is so chic!

9/ An infinite rose lasts a year and makes the most beautiful desk accessory.

10/ I love pomegranates, so of course I’ve fallen for this Alex Monroe necklace.

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My December List

My December List  - all the best things! | Miranda's Notebook

As I’ve got a few Gift Guides scheduled this month, I thought I’d shake things up a bit, and instead of doing my usual ‘Top Ten Must Haves‘ post, I’m sharing a list of the top 10 things that mean Christmas to me.

1/ Christmas Carols playing all day long.

2/ Admiring the lights and shop window displays in London.

3/ Bright red berries in vases around the house.

4/ Mince pies and mulled wine.

5/ Scandi-style sweaters. 

6/ Rereading the Sherlock Holmes story The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle.

7/  Hot chocolate (every night).

8/ The smell of pine.

9/ Christmas cards on the mantelpiece.

10/ Roaring fires and flickering candlelight. 

My December List  - all the best things! | Miranda's Notebook My December List  - all the best things! | Miranda's Notebook My December List  - all the best things! | Miranda's Notebook My December List  - all the best things! | Miranda's Notebook

I’d love to know – what would be on your list?

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November Must Haves 2015

November Must Haves

Another month, another ‘Must Haves’ list. I’ve been on a bit of health kick this November – I think as a reaction to the awful rain and also in some attempt to balance out all the extravagance the party season tends to bring. Here are some of the things I’ve been loving (or lusting after) this month.

1/ Royal Academy Friend Membership. There are some brilliant exhibitions on at the Royal Academy at the moment, so I’m really making the most of my membership. I loved the Ai Weiwei exhibition, as well as the Jean-Etienne Leotard and the Edmund de Waal. I’m excited to see the Painting the Modern Garden: From Monet to Matisse exhibition too in January.

2/ There’s nothing that cheers up a grey day more than flowers, and I am becoming increasingly obsessed with Only Roses blooms that last incredibly well (about 2 weeks!!).

3/ I love Lewis Howes’ podcast, in which he interviews an interesting mix of successful entrepreneurs. His new book The School of Greatness has just been published, and so far I’m loving it!

4/ I’ve started scattering chia seeds over my morning porridge  – I’m determined to fight off winter germs if I possibly can!

5/ I love this notebook that adds a bit of sparkle to a rather gloomy month.

6/ We all need a good pie recipe in time for Thanksgiving! Sweet potato pie is a favourite of mine and makes a nice alternative to pumpkin.

7/ My skin gets terribly dry in the winter so slathering on my favourite oil at the moment.

8/ A black bag is a staple for winter, and I’m lusting after this gorgeous Ralph Lauren one.

9/ I’m barely parted from my pot of ginger tea at the moment – I love my Branksome China pot, which is the best pourer.

10/ I got the Simple Green Smoothies book this month, and I love the philosophy behind the blog and book. There are all sorts of great tips on how to prepare smoothies in advance, which I find especially helpful. I’ve signed up to take the Simple Green Smoothie challenge in January – I’m looking forward to it already!

What are your Top Ten Must Haves for this month?

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October Must Haves 2015

October Must Haves

I seem to say this every month, but where does the time go?? How is October almost over already? I have to say, I’ve been really enjoying the past few weeks. September felt a bit of a bumpy transition from summer into autumn, but now I’m truly relishing how gorgeous London looks at this time of year, and I’ve been investing time into setting up routines and good habits that are helping me feel more on stop of things and less stressed. I hope this happy trend continues into winter! Here are some other things that have been making October such a great month, or that I’ve marked down for my wish list:

1/ I had to say again how much I’m loving Nigella’s new cookbook. It’s full of delicious, healthy and easy to prepare recipes that inspire me to get into the kitchen.

2/ It will probably come as no surprise to you all that I absolutely adore flowers, and lately I’ve been getting mine from Little Lake Flowers, who have a stall every Saturday at Skittle Alley market. The lovely ladies at the stall will do the prettiest bunches for a mere £10, and they last the week wonderfully well. It’s amazing now a bunch of flowers can transform a room.

3/ I can never resist a lovely fig-scented candle, especially this time of year.

4/ How sweet are these Liberty-pattern necklaces? Perfect for pairing with a cosy v-neck jumper.

5/ My 5am wakeup calls are getting increasingly colder and darker, and I’ve been swapping my breakfast of granola and yoghurt for warming oatmeal and honey.

6/ I just upgraded my Buffer account and I LOVE it. It makes scheduling social media posts a breeze, and I’m feeling much more organised because of it.

7/ I recently discovered Coco Fennell and I adore the quirky, vintage style to her dresses.

8/ Get into the Halloween spirit by reading Daphne du Maurier’s spine-tingly creepy novella The Birds.

9/ These sparkly skulls are the perfect table decoration for a spooky dinner party.

10/ I also like the idea of laying out a cat-mask on every dinner plate for a playful touch.

++ view previous monthly top ten lists ++

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September Top Ten Must Haves 2015

September Top Ten Must Haves

Autumn seems to have arrived early this year, but, although I was sorry to see summer go, I’m starting to enjoy the shorter days and cooler temperatures. I’m looking forward to the leaves changing colour and to having an excuse to put pumpkin into every baked good I make. September can often feel an odd month – no longer summer, not quite autumn, but this year I feel already entrenched in the spirit of Fall and am loving cosy flannel dresses, floppy black hats and glowing candles in the evenings.

Here are my Top Ten Must Haves for September:

1/ The perfect shirt to wear for an apple picking excursion.

2/ Autumn always seems to call for a new hat, and a black fedora goes with exceptionally well with knit dresses and boots.

3/ Ever since noticing Honey & Co serve cake on pretty tiles rather than dessert plates, I’ve wanted to do the same myself. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to hop on a plane to Portugal to pick some up in street markets, but I figure these rather attractive (and currently on sale!) tiles from Fired Earth are the next best thing.

4/ More and more, I’m drawn to pared back basics in jewellery, and I love this bracelet made by Danish designer Pernille Corydon that was inspired by a New York fire escape.

5/ As the nights draw in, I’ve started thinking of getting candlesticks out again. I love this impressive pewter piece from The French House.

6/ Theatre season has started! There’s so much I’m excited to see, but I was especially pleased to snap up tickets to Husbands & Sons the National Theatre. Tickets are selling out very fast to this, so if you fancy going don’t waste any time getting your seats.

7/ In my recent video, I spoke about some magazines I’ve been pleased to discover. One I didn’t mention, but have loved flicking through this week, is The Collective Quarterly. The latest issue certainly puts you in an autumnal frame of mind, with its gorgeous photography featuring beautiful American homes and landscapes wreathed in Fall splendour.

8/ Since I’ve started doing more videos on a regular basis, I’m thinking about getting this microphone which I’ve heard is good for improving sound quality and seems reasonable at £10.

9/ If you’re as much of an Instagram fan as I am, then do I have a revelation for you! Iconosquare allows you to easily track and reply to comments online (no more laborious searching for the person you’re replying – hitting reply automatically includes their name in your post). It’s much easier to comment too, as I for one am much quicker at typing on a keyboard. I only started using iconosquare the past couple of days, but it’s definitely one of my favourite discoveries of the month!

10/ These Jessica Zoob leggings make you feel stylish even when you’re essentially spending a day in your pjs.

What would be your September Top Ten Must Haves? I’d love to know!

++ View previous monthly Top Ten Must Have lists ++

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August Top Ten Must Haves

August Must Haves

August is a funny month: at the start you have the excitement of the summer holidays stretching seemingly endlessly ahead, but the weeks go by in a flash and soon it’s time to start thinking about back to school and to notice the slight nip in the air heralding the approach of autumn.

Here are my top ten picks for the last month of summer:

1/ Sunflowers can brighten up even the rainiest of August days (fairly common in the UK!).

2/ A pretty wedding card that’s useful to have on hand for wedding season.

3/ My hair can get rather dry and fly-away when it’s hot, so I swap to using a little of this mask instead of conditioner.

4/ The summer is a good time to start new projects, and mine is to begin to learn the basics in website creation, so this book should help.

5/ I always like to buy trench coats when they’re greatly reduced by the end of summer. This Rachel Riley one is now quite the steal!

6/ I’ve been having fun doing a little personal styling for a friend recently, which has inspired me to start reading a few more fashion books.

7/ This toner is wonderfully refreshing to squirt over your face after a workout.

8/ I’ve been enjoying trying out some recipes from my Middle-Eastern inspired cookbooks, and have invested in some rose and orange blossom water which seem to be quite common ingredients.

9/ I love pretty enamel plates that brighten up a picnic.

10/ Iced coffee is a must for me in warm weather.

What are your ‘must haves’ for August?

++ See my other monthly ‘must have’ lists here. ++

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July Top Ten Must Haves

July Top Ten Must Haves | Miranda's Notebook

We’re mid-way through July (how did that happen?!), which means it’s time for another Top Ten Must Have list. Here are the things I’ve been loving or coveting so far this month:

1/ I absolutely adore Rachel Platten’s Fight Song EP and have been playing it constantly.

2/ At £35, this Karen Mabon scarf is a real steal, as well as being utterly adorable.

3/ I had a wonderful time seeing the Barbara Hepworth exhibition at Tate Britain, and I’m now lusting after this Hepworth inspired water jug that’s in their gift shop.

4/ How sweet is this Alex Monroe cherry ring?

5/ Chanel’s CC cream is what I’m wearing on a daily basis at the moment – I love that it has SPF 50.

6/ Mariana by Monica Dickens is a favourite read of mine for the summer, and I love the cover on this Persephone Classic.

7/ This necklace adds such a pretty splash of colour to summery outfits.

8/ I wish Tracy Anderson workout wear was available in the UK, because I adore her range! These leggings are so perfect for summer.

9/ I swear by my Carvela sandals in the summer, and I love these pretty red ones.

10/ Cherries! I could eat them all the time, and luckily for me, my local Tesco, as well as Kingston market have been selling them cheaply.

What are your July ‘must haves’? I’d love to know!

++ See previous Top Ten Lists here ++

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June Top Ten Must Haves

June Must Haves | Miranda's Notebook

June is simply flying by! It’s one of my very favourite months, and this year is no exception. Here are my Top Ten ‘Must Haves’ for things I’ve been particularly enjoying or coveting so far in June.

1/ Peony season is so fleeting, it’s definitely ok to treat yourself to a bunch!

2/ Chanel’s new Chance Eau Vive just launched and it is lovely. Light, but sophisticated, it screams summer to me. I’ve got some samples and will be very sad when they’re finished.

3/ June is the month to truly enjoy beautiful gardens, and what better than an exhibition devoted to gardens and art?

4/ I love to wear pretty straw hats in the summer, and Agnes B ones are always a favourite!

5/ I really want this fruit infusing water bottle to bring with me to work.

6/ What’s better than your own punnet of freshly picked strawberries?

7/ I’ve been off lip gloss for a long time, but I’ve found myself reaching for it more and more over the past few weeks. It gives such a pretty, summery look! Chantecaille lip glosses are always fabulous.

8/ Pretty melamine sets for picnics in parks. I’m having a picnic in Kew Gardens on Friday and am so looking forward to it (hopes it doesn’t rain!).

9/ I just received this cookbook in the mail and am loving it!! I’m attending the author’s afternoon tea event in Barnes, which I’m very excited about. I can’t wait to try out lots of the recipes myself soon.

10/ This song seems set to be my tune for the summer!

What are your ‘must haves’ for June?

++ View other Top Ten monthly lists here ++

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