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Simplified Sundays ~ 30 Days To Minimalism

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  • Sunday, 6 September 2020


Life is complicated. Whichever way you look at it, there are constant obstacles, pressures, expectations and it can be overwhelming. I’m a strong believer in controlling the controllables, and if there is a way that things can be simplified, I think it is worth applying. Whether this is physically or mentally, I would argue that simplification is a huge way to relieve stress and make life easier. 


With this in mind, I want to start writing a series here on Madolyn Thinks called Simplified Sundays, to share ways in which I have simplified and in turn, made my life a little less complex. 


The first of these Simplified Sundays posts is around minimalism, more specifically de-cluttering possessions and items in the home. I’ve put together a 30 Days To Minimalism Guide, which is a breakdown of various different categories to sort through and minimise. I really feel that having and owning less ‘stuff’ simplifies things greatly. There is less choice, less cleaning, less tidying, less organising and fewer distractions. It also means you have more time, more space and clearer surroundings, which in my mind equals simplicity. 


Some of these categories are larger than others, and some may take you no time at all. But I’ve split them up into days so that in theory you can greatly simplify your belongings over the course of a month



Wardrobe 


Day One: Wallet/handbag 

Day Two: Underwear/socks/pjs   

Day Three: Clothes

Day Four: Coats/jackets 

Day Five: Shoes

Day Six: Accessories 

Day Seven: Linen and towels 


Beauty 


Day Eight: Makeup 

Day Nine: Skincare 

Day Ten: Beauty products

Day Eleven: Hair products 

Office & Livingroom 

Day Twelve: Junk draws 

Day Thirteen: Books 

Day Fourteen: Paperwork/life admin

Day Fifteen: Ornaments

Day Sixteen: Electricals

Day Eighteen: Digital Media ie cds/dvds/games 

Day Nineteen: Paper media ie magazines/newspapers/post 


Kitchen & Bathroom 


Day Twenty: Kitchen appliances 

Day Twenty One: Crockery/cutlery/pots & pans 

Day Twenty Two: Bathroom cabinet ie medical supplies etc 

Day Twenty Three: Cleaning products 


Misc


Day Twenty Three: Sentimental items 

Day Twenty Four: Photographs 

Day Twenty Five: Hobbies ie camping gear, musical equipment 

Day Twenty Six: Work 

Day Twenty Seven: Boxes - of old items and the instruction manual

Day Twenty Eight: Seasonal items ie hats/umbrella/picnic gear 

Day Twenty Nine: Car

Day Thirty: Travel items I.e. suitcases/bags/adapters



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Welcome to Madolyn Thinks... Again!

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  • Thursday, 3 September 2020

I feel as though blogging is a fairly reflective process. Over the years I have shared various elements of my life here on Madolyn Thinks from shopping hauls, to fashion must haves with a few travel diaries thrown into the mix. Lately however I feel as though I have turned a page and begun a new chapter of my life. I have grown a lot in recent times and I feel as though one of the reasons Madolyn Thinks has become a neglected aspect of my life is because I lost a real passion for it. The problem I faced is that I no longer felt that it was reflective of myself now, despite my continuation of love for both writing and photography. My focus, lifestyle, thought processes and everything in between has shifted, and the topics of my previous posts don’t seem to represent me as a person anymore. 

I have used some of the lock-down period to take some time to reflect on Madolyn Thinks and figure out what it is that I want the focus to be. In the past I have really enjoyed having this space and being able to use this platform as a creative outlet and want to continue to do so. With this in mind, I would like to introduce a new wave of Madolyn Thinks, or the next chapter as it were. My plan is to archive some of my older content and move forward with posts which align more with my current mindset. 


I still want to incorporate my interests of travel and reading, as well as my love for beauty and fashion on Madolyn Thinks, but I would also like for there to be more of a focus and a deeper intent to my writing. Madolyn Thinks will still remain a personal blog, however I want to use this space to share learned experiences and practices that I have adopted into my life. The notion of minimalism and intentional living is something that has been learning about for the last four or five years. This has only intensified over the last year or so, as I have applied it to most aspects of my life. 


As well as there being much more of a focus on minimalism, intentionality and tips on simplified living, there are also a few more minor tweaks to Madolyn Thinks. There are some new elements including a ‘Book Club’ page, as well as a few new tabs at the top for some series/topics that I have scheduled to write about. These include Simplified Sundays, Resources, Capsule Wardrobe and more. I am also going to change the scheduling of my blog posts, publishing content on Wednesdays and Sundays each week. 


I’m really looking forward to getting back into blogging and I’m excited about how Madolyn Thinks may develop. So here’s to moving forward and trying something new! 


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Black Lives Matter - Listen, Read, Watch: Educating Myself Further

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  • Sunday, 14 June 2020


There is a lot going on in the world at the moment and recent events have really highlighted some serious issues that we all need to address. Change happens through action and the sharing and understanding of information. Over the last few weeks I have made the effort to listen and have discussions to educate myself and those around me. To make a stand, we must stand together and unite. 

Below is a list of some of the most impactful things I have read, watched and listened to, in order to educate myself further. I wanted to share these resources in the hope that they may inspire and educate others. 

“I understand that I will never understand, but I will stand with you”


Podcasts 



Documentaries

  • Louis Theroux Dark States: Murder in Milwaukee
  • 13th 
  • Time The Kalife Browder Story 
  • The Central Park Five (2012)

Films

  • BlackKKlansman 
  • 12 Years A Slave 
  • Django Unchained 
  • The Help 

Books

Madolyn
xxx

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Outfits of The Week | Working From Home Edit

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  • Thursday, 23 April 2020

Since the lockdown began over a month ago now, I have encouraged myself to get dressed everyday, especially on the days when I am working from home. My default uniform seems to have become comfy jogging bottoms and a crop top, with some sort of cosy knitwear if I’m feeling a little chilly. 

I think that even if I pop on some loungewear, it’s important for me to make the effort to get up at the same time everyday, wash my face, do my morning skincare routine and get dressed. It has really been setting me up for the day, and makes me feel a lot more productive when I’m sat, working at my desk. It is so easy to stay in bed with my PJs on, and work from there, but I find that having a morning routine, similar to the one I had when I was going into the office everyday, has really helped me to adjust to staying at home.

There are so many clothing brand sales currently, and I’m so guilty for browsing loungewear bits and pieces online on a regular basis. Femme Luxe Finery have got some great pieces on offer at the moment though, ranging from co-ords, over sized Ts and jogging bottoms to suit anyone’s preference. I’ve recently picked up a few new pieces from them, which I have linked below. 




Outfit Two: Black Leggings & Black Tank


Outfit Three: Dark Green Joggers & Black Tank




Madolyn
xxx

This post contains PR samples from Femme Luxe, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

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Cute & Casual Tops For Lounging At Home

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  • Tuesday, 31 March 2020


Now that we’re all staying at home in an effort to keep each other safe in the brink of all of this madness, comfy clothes have become an absolute must! 

I’m a huge fan of loungewear at the best of times, but with me staying in and working from home every day, there is no way I’ll be sitting in office attire on a daily basis for the foreseeable future. 

Femme Luxe Finery have some amazing loungewear pieces that are super affordable and perfect for days spent working and lounging around the house. 


Joggers are an absolute staple for me, I find them easy to throw on and find it super handy when they have pockets. So when Femme Luxe kindly asked me if I’d like to pick out a couple of pieces from their recent collection, I chose a couple of different tops that I could wear around the house, paired with my joggers. 


I love this cute little caramel tank top paired with these baggy white joggers. I find the fit really flattering and because of the shape and hold, there is no need to wear a bra, which is always a plus when it comes to comfort. The material is so soft and silky and can easily be worn on its own or underneath a little cardigan or jumper. I really like the racer back finish, which again provides support and extra comfort. 


This second caramel tank top is made with the same material as the one above, but the cut is slightly different. The straps on this top are very thin and it comes much lower both on the front and the back with a square finish. Although it’s not quite as fitted, it still provides an element of support and so again, there is no need for a bra.



Nothing beats a classic black T-shirt, which can be worn with pretty much anything. This is a really nice tight fit, which I find much more flattering with my body shape, as an over-size, loose-fit T can drown me a little. As I have a shorter torso, I like to tie my Ts into a knot at the front to create more of a cropped-finish. I also really like that the neckline on this T is a bit of a looser fit, again creating a more flattering and comfortable fit. 

Madolyn
xxx

This post contains PR samples from Femme Luxe, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

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Top Tips For Planning Your 2020 Travel

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  • Sunday, 23 February 2020


I decided towards the end of last year that I wanted to set myself a travel challenge for 2020. I love to travel, and with work commitments and moving to London, I wasn’t able to do as half as much as I wanted to in 2019. 

I wanted to make sure this year that I put myself and my goals to the front of my focus. There isn’t often a time in life that you can put yourself first one hundred percent, and so I wanted to take advantage of this and tick a lot of things off my wish list. 

My travel challenge/goal for 2020 is to visit 12 different places in 12 months. I know that this is a lot, both financially and time-wise, especially with me still working full time and now living in London. But I have been sensible and organised with my planning, and so I thought that I would share some of my top tips, and things that I have done to make this goal achievable. 

Make a Travel List 


One of the first things I did at the beginning of the year was sit down and make a list of all of the places that I wanted to travel to. Although this may not be a concrete set of travel destinations, it got me thinking about where I wanted to go, and helped me to figure out when would be the best time to visit throughout the year. For example, I knew that I wanted to visit Iceland, and so have penciled that in for November, as I know that this is a good time of year to travel to Reykjavik.

Diary overview 


Once I had made a list of places to travel to, I then had a look at my diary for the year. This way I could see what commitments and plans I needed to work around. In my current job, my annual leave runs 1st April - 31st March, so whilst reviewing my diary, I also worked out how much annual leave I had to take/ensure that it will be spread out across the year. 

Being organised with my diary has been really helpful in planning my trips, I even set up a spreadsheet of the year so that I could easily see what my plans are at a quick glance. 

Check Your Finances 


So, it’s all well and good making a list of travel destinations, and checking your diary to see when you can go, but if your finances aren’t in check, you won’t be able to travel no matter how free your schedule. 

I reviewed my salary and savings and looked at how much I could realistically put to one side every month in order to fund my travel. I also checked through my outgoings to see where I could pull back and save extra cash to put towards traveling. I get asked a lot of questions to do with finances and so I think I might write a blog post to cover this subject a bit more in depth. 

Link-In With Friends & Family


I always think that traveling is more fun with other people. I love to share experiences and memories and with life being so busy, it’s nice to have the excuse to spend some quality time with loved ones.  So it’s good to link in with those that you’d like to travel with and see if your plans fit in with theirs. Once you’ve got the green flag from them the real planning can begin! 

Book Your Travel 


So, list of travel destinations complete, diary organised, finances in check and best buds approved, there’s nothing left to do than book! I always like to book my travel first, whether that is flights, trains, hire cars etc. Once my travel is booked, I then look into accommodation. There is no right or wrong way of doing it, this is just the system I prefer. My top site for booking flights is Sky Scanner - I find that they always hunt down the best prices and offer good little suggestions to save money by amending your flight times or traveling out a day early. I also like to look on Air BnB for accommodation because there is a huge range of places to stay in and if there are more of you the cost can be really low. 

These are my top tips when it comes to planning out a travel overview for the year. However, if you would like to know more information about how I plan/book individual trips ie city breaks/road trips etc, please let me know. 


Madolyn
xxx

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Budapest Capsule Wardrobe

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  • Thursday, 6 February 2020


Next week I’ll be flying over to Budapest for three nights with some of my closest friends and I can’t bloody wait! We’ve had it booked for a few months now and I’m so excited to explore the city and everything it has to offer. 

With us only being there for a short while, we’ve only booked to take hand luggage on the plane. However, the weather is going to be a little on the chilly side, we’ve got a range of different activities we want to do and we’ll be going “out” out at least two of the nights... So I want to make sure that I’ll have enough room to pack clothes that will keep me warm, items that’ll be practical and outfits that I can wear during the evening.

It may seem a little over the top to some, but the organisational planner in me decided that it would be best to create a capsule wardrobe that covers all of the above. That way, I don’t have to worry about what to pack, because everything has been pre-planned. I also won’t have to worry about outfits once I arrive in Budapest as everything goes with at least two other items, I have a range of day-time and evening looks, and I’ll be covered for all weather possibilities. 

Budapest Capsule Wardrobe 



Black Jumper, Femme Luxe | Blue Jeans, New Look | Red Skirt, Primark | Black Jeans, Primark
Corset Top, Femme Luxe | Jumper Dress, Femme Luxe 



Black Tee, Pull & Bear | Camel Jumper, New look

Extras 


One pair of black tights
One pair of black heeled boots
One Pair of Vans
One black puffer jacket 
A black belt 
A set of PJs 
A Swimming cosy 

Madolyn
xxx

This post contains PR samples from Femme Luxe, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

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~ AD ~ Layering Up This Winter With Femme Luxe

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  • Saturday, 23 November 2019



Winter in the UK is well and truly upon us it seems. I feel as though I barely had time to appreciate autumn and now I’m having to pull out my gloves, wooly hats and all of my cosy knitwear. 

Living down in London I have found that layering up my outfits is a must - from walking to work, hopping on and off the tube, being in central heated buildings or wandering down the high-street, I find that I am constantly flip-flopping between wanting to bundle up and strip off. 


The look that I have put together in this post is so easy to wear. It feels comfortable and chilled, yet stylish and very on-trend with winter fashion. 

I have been trying to find the “perfect” pair of casual mom-jeans, especially after seeing Hello October’s looks that she has been putting together lately on her Instagram. I struggle to find a good fit because not only am I very short, I’m also curvy and so finding a style was both flattering for my shape, that didn’t make me look like a child, was difficult. I ended up finding this pair in Topshop and love the way that they look on me. They are quite high-waisted but I feel as though this extends my legs a little and it also means that they sit on my waist, which is very flattering. They fit my bum really well and they are slightly turned up at the bottom, which again, I always find compliments a shorter frame. 

I have been wearing these jeans constantly over the last couple of weeks and find that I can wear them both very casually or dressed up. I love pairing the casual fit of the ripped jeans with this pretty, black, lace bodysuit. I enjoy styling pieces together to create a more casual vibe, that still looks pretty and feminine. However, because we are now in the midst of winter, I wanted to layer up the outfit and this white shirt works perfectly in line with the casual/pretty look I wanted to create. The shirt itself has a fairly masculine shape to it, with large cuffs and a wide collar. But because of the flowy material and the mesh sleeves, it really softens the style and creates a much more gentle effect. 


To finish the look, I knew that I needed some sort of coat or jacket. Gone are the days when I would go out on a night without this layer of clothing in winter - I honestly have no idea how I did it! I am obsessed with this camel, waterfall coat. It is so effortless to wear and I think it looks so stylish and chic. It is quite a large, over-fit and I am aware that it comes close to the floor when on my 5ft2 body, however I almost feel although that just adds to the overall effect of the outfit. It is again, for me at least, the perfect combination of casual yet pretty/stylish that I absolutely adore, and I am sure that I will be getting a lot of wear out of this outfit over the next couple of months… 




Madolyn
xxx

This post contains PR samples from Femme Luxe, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

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A Few Autumnal Staples ~ Femme Luxe Finery

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  • Tuesday, 29 October 2019


The clocks have gone back, the Halloween parties have begun and the nights are getting darker. Autumn is officially here and I couldn’t be happier. It is my favourite time of the year by far, I love the cosy evenings, crisp walks outside and the fact that it is time to pull out all of the autumnal wardrobe pieces.

I recently placed an order through Femme Luxe and picked out some lovely autumnal staples. They have a fantastic range which you can order from online, perfect to see you through any occasion.

The first item I picked up are these black PVC trousers. I have seen these in shops over the last few weeks but absolutely fell in love with the way that Hello October has been styling them recently. I love her fashion sense and the way that she has created so many different looks with just one pair of trousers. She always looks so lovely with a casual yet classy style and when I saw this dupe on the Femme Luxe website I put them straight into my basket. 

For this casual look I have teamed them up with a soft knit and a lace bralette. I feel like this would be a really nice outfit to wear with Vans for a coffee date with a friend. I also like the idea of dressing the trousers up with a black body, heels and a clutch bag. Or with court shoes and a baggy jumper tucked in the front for a casual ‘date night’ look. 


The next piece I picked out was this cute little leopard print dress. I am obsessed with puff sleeves at the moment - you can see my picks from my last collaboration with Femme Luxe here. I think that this dress is so cute and great for this time of year. I wore it out last weekend when I went out for drinks with some girl friends. I wore it with over the knee boots and it was the perfect outfit to dance in without freezing on the way home. I also love the black and white effect of the leopard print, I feel like it gives it a slightly more subtle look whilst still remaining on trend. 


I also picked out a staple pair of blue jeans from Femme Luxe which are a gorgeous fit. They are really high-waisted which is great for me as I feel like it makes my legs look a little longer, and it means that they can be styled in a number of different ways. I really like the way they look teamed with this glittery body, also from Femme Luxe, as it really dresses up an otherwise casual pair of jeans. With heeled boots and a clutch I think this would make a great ‘cocktails with the girls’ outfit. 


I would also wear this lovely little body with the black PVC trousers. It would create a really classic look, especially with a pair of black court shoes and a little clutch bag, the perfect autumnal date night outfit. 

Madolyn
xxx

This post contains PR samples from Femme Luxe, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

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