#CheapNChicChallenge: 1/30 The Challenge Begins...

Hello everyone,
Thank you so much for joining/following me on this journey. If you haven't read my introductory post about the challenge, don't worry you can read it here. As it is the first day I wanted to share a few tips to ease you into the challenge...

First things first-have a little wardrobe sort-out. Anna is a queen of organisation & this video shows her extensive clear out routine :)

I'd recommend Homebargains or Primark for thin, velvet hangers on a budget. They create more room in your wardrobe that way & when things are hanging up you're less likely to forget about them.

Instead of a 'maybe pile' I'd be more inclined to make a 'fix it/re-work pile'. I have dresses that need a hem shortening, or maybe a white top that needs to be involved in a Dylon party plus the odd thing that needs a button sewing on etc. Next time your sat in front of the TV why not get something from the pile & spruce it up a little. Hand-stitching is so therapeutic.

Be ruthless with your giveaway pile, if you haven't worn it for over a year it needs to go to the charity shop. There are so many charities that are desperate for donations so do a good deed & give generously. It increases your chances of positive 'charity shop karma' too ;)

If you have an impulsive nature, set up a Pinterest board, write an 'I want it but can't have it...yet' list. Basically take note of everything you would usually buy on impulse & after 4 weeks see if you still really need it in your life. It's an excellent show of will power plus you can really work out if the neon, furry jumper has a place to be adored in your wardrobe!
This is totally optional (I mean it's ALL optional) but I'm putting aside a tenner a week so that at the end of the challenge I can invest in some eco-friendly basics. There is a post lined up about finding fair-trade & organic cotton clothes on a budget so keep your eyes peeled for that.
Join me here on Monday, Wednesday & Friday Evenings for the latest installment of the challenge for all of September  :D Remember to use the #CheapNChicChallenge hashtag on your social media & feel free to use the image on your blogs/Instagram. 

Good luck & please share this post with your friends who would be interested in taking part :) Send me a tweet if you're getting involved!
Thanks for reading!
Rachelle xxx


#CheapNChicChallenge: Join Me In The Second-Hand Fashion Challenge

Hello Everyone!
As some of you will have noticed I have been harping on about 'The Second-Hand Fashion Challenge' on my various social outlets! For those of you who wish to find out more please do read on...

Basically I've been reading up a whole lot on fast-fashion, vintage fashion, second-hand, everything under the 'eco-fashion umbrella' and I find it pretty amazing/shocking if I'm honest with you...

Without going into the whole she-bang about the devastating results of 'fast-fashion' I have found some pretty thought provoking facts:
  • £140 million worth of clothes go into landfill each year in the UK alone
  • Only 20% of clothing is made in Britain
  • An average spend per person on clothes per year is £780 
  • Only 1/8th of all unwanted clothing & textiles is donated to charity whilst the other 7/8ths is sent to landfill! Source

I am becoming an eco-babe on a mission, now I'm not one to preach but I am one to get people involved!
I feel like bloggers especially fashion bloggers have extra pressure to buy into the trends and constantly update our wardrobes. Regular hauls and lookbooks are flooding the blogosphere and many of us are struggling with wardrobes that are bursting at the seams and bank balances that are dwindling.

Join me for a challenge
Lets do a little experiment for just one month, in which we don't buy ANYTHING new for our wardrobes. Let's call it a wardrobe rework or a fashion cleanse. Whatever we class it as I just want to have a shift in perception about what fashion really means to you. If after a month you have had literally no connection with the challenge then hey-it's only 4 weeks out of your life and you can continue on your fashion path. What I'm really hoping is that the challenge will be fun, inspiring, thrifty and will change peoples opinions on second-hand fashion and trends in general.
The Rules
  • You can only buy from charity shops/flea markets/car boots
  • eBay is allowed but only for second-hand/vintage goods (no cheeky buy-it-nows!)
  • If you feel like you REAAALLLY need something that's new, take a photo of it, pin it, write it down & then re-visit at the end of the challenge & see if it's still a must-have.

I am a fashion styling graduate & I've studied fashion, trends, promotion and photography plus I have been an avid charity shopper for the last 5 years. I'm not asking you all to wear kaftans made of hemp and vegan shoes but what I am asking is for you to look at your wardrobe through different eyes. Rework things, have a style shake-up, weed out the items that don't mean anything to you and find something that you really connect to as a garment. I love trends. I love looking at trends and putting my own spin on them. I'd much rather do that then wear a dress that Primark have put on the rail that epitomises the trend, yet hundreds of people will be wearing the same, poorly manufactured piece for one season until the next big thing happens.

Throughout the month I have created little prompts and mini challenges for you to take part in. I've created the #CheapNChicChallenge hash tag so we can all support each other through different social media. It also provides a fresh feature on the blogs and people can follow your journey too.

The challenge will start on September 1st 2014 so put it in your diary & spread the word. The more the merrier :)

Feel free to use the artwork on your blog/Instagram/Facebook any social media you like & link back to this post so others can join in too!

I can't wait for this to start! If you have any questions you can send me an e-mail or tweet me @MyNameIsRachey

Thanks for reading :)
Rachelle xxx


Ohhh hello!
 Welcome to a very special edition of ‘Currently’ as errrrbody knows I went to Glastonbury Festival last week and genuinely had the time of my life! I am suffering with post-Glastonbury blues (it’s an actual thing!) so I thought I’d cheer myself up by re-living the experience in writing format...
Here is a list of all the bands/artists I saw over the weekend. Some I watched the whole set others I just caught a few songs, but I'm really chuffed to have seen some of my favourites :)
-Kaiser Chiefs
-Crystal Fighters
-Foster The People
-Jurassic 5
-Royal Blood
-Lana Del Ray
-Jagwar Ma
-Little Dragon
-Dan Le Sac vs Scroobious Pip
-Jake Bugg
-Dolly Parton
-White Lies
-The Black Keys
Currently DRINKING: I absolutely loved the fact that you were allowed to take your own alcohol into the main area. I didn’t buy one alcoholic drink all weekend! On the way down we stopped at asda and I got a big bottle of morgans spiced gold (oohhh rummy goodness) and a bottle of ameretto too. Honestly I’m not a massive drinker so it doesn’t take a lot to get me tipsy. When my fellow festivellers were waking up and opening a can of warm cider for breakfast I went to the green smoothie stall instead haha. I just can’t bring myself to drink all day and night , so I started drinking in the afternoon most days. Plus green smoothies alkalise the stomach so is the perfect lining for all the booze ;) After fighting with the bi-polar weather we were left a bit chilly & soggy, so my ingenious solution was to buy hot chocolate and ADD RUM! The look on the stall holders faces was priceless. That combo definitely saved us from hypothermia more than once ;)

Currently EATING: When I arrived at Glastonbury there were so many delicious food options. I’ve been thinking about incorporating a more veggie diet into my life so Glasto was the perfect place to try some new vegetarian foods. I tried falafel, tofu burgers, paella & quesadillas and they were all INCREDIBLE! Even from a little catering trailer! Most of the stalls sold fair-trade, organic, free range food so I’m sure the meat options were amazing too but I just don’t trust festival meat. Plus the veggie options are healthier, cheaper and give you more energy!
Currently WEARING: Well my most worn piece of clothing was definitely my geeky mountaineering jacket but boy was I pleased to have it! When you see people in the emergency ponchos aka a glorified plastic bags they don’t look very warm or dry. Also I bought thermal leggings before I left too & they were a godsend! I really feel like I’m becoming a responsible old woman favouring comfort over style haha! Although in my bag were a few new favourites. Mainly my vintage fruity dress and my watermelon top. There were a few guys there that were all dressed up as different fruit and I fit in very well with them...
Currently AMAZED BY: The sheer size of the Glastonbury site. I had heard it was big but I wasn’t prepared for how much there was to discover! I probably only explored about 2/3rds of the area but there’s not enough time in the day or enough energy in my Hunter clad legs!
Currently REMINISCING: How kooky everything was, everywhere you turned was a feast for the eyeballs from a handmade shantytown stage, to 8ft wooden flowers, the ‘Unfairground’ which basically had demonic babyheads on busted up fairground rides *creepy*, disco balls in the trees, tiny hidden stages with a moustached old man playing vinyl’s on a gramophone. The giant spider at Arcadia that blasted fire every night, snow at Greenpeace, the little moss hanging pods suspended over a pond, going for a wander on my own and ended up at a stage doing a jazz cover of The Specials and dancing with a group of trolls, some human ladybirds & a stilt walking flamingo!
Currently PONDERING: About having a stall at Glastonbury. I’ve got my little vintage business and a smoothie dream in the pipeline and I think doing the festival circuit would be amazing! I have done a little research and obviously the stalls aren’t cheap but depending on the pitch and the weather it could be a real possibility!
Currently IN LOVE WITH: My post-festival tan! Now I’m a massive paley but living out in the fields for 5 days even in the turbulent weather has given me a pretty decent tan!
Currently BUYING: I didn’t buy anything at the festival just because I was conscious of having to carry everything back on the train with me. The stalls were amazing though, some of the best vintage hippy-esque collections I’ve ever seen! There were a few charity shop stalls too that were pretty cool. Plus I’m gonna start saving for next year, I’ve worked out that if I save £8.65 a week then I’ll have enough for ticket/travel & spending moneys this time next year ;)
So there we have it, sorry I'm not sorry about the photo-overload ;) It is just the most magical paradise!
Have you been to Glastonbury before? Are you going to any other festivals this year?
Thanks for reading :)
Rachelle xxx



So as everyone and their dog knows by now-I'm going to Glastonbury festival in a couple of weeks!
Here at Inspired By The Retired we like to do things in the most magical yet purse friendly way. I'm not gonna skimp on the festival experience but I'm not gonna waste my money either. Festivals usually end up costing more than a holiday abroad once you factor in the ticket price, travel, equipment & festival outfits! So here are a few tips I've got to share with you all...

1) Invest in the best tent you can afford: Too many times I have opted for the cheapest tent in the 'I'll just leave it behind' mindset, tut tut Rachelle of the past. Now I am slightly older & much wiser it makes so much sense to get a 'proper' tent. When your stuff is all soggy and you've got to sleep in a drippy puddle for the night (and potential next couple of nights) it literally puts a dampener on the whole festival mood. At least get one with two layers, they're not too pricey! I've managed to get a lovely tent here, that takes minutes to put up & is a reliable brand. It's half price which makes it reasonable for lil, long me and I can use it for more than one trip!

2) Sleeping quarters: So other than your sleeping bag I'd really recommend bringing a pillow & a blanket to make sleeping a little more cosy. A foam roll up mat is also a necessity. For Glastonbury I've bought an inflatable pillow for less than a pound from Homebargains 'outdoor section', covered with a jumper I think it'll be luxury! I always get cold in bed ( I sleep with two duvets even in the summer!) so one of the cheap and cheerful microfleece blankets are perfect, they don't take up much space at all and even if the sun is shining all day it's always chilly at night time.

Eating & Drinking
3) Bring snacks! I am an avid snack-lover and as I'm on a mission to cut the crap out of my diet I'm gonna suggest some healthy snacks! Cereal bars are always a winner, dried fruit for vitamins & for something a little more indulgent make some homemade flapjack, nothing better than flapjack for brekkie or for a surge of energy after you've been boogieing for hours.

4) A coolbox is your friend... Most festival food is crazy overpriced and not really that great. However as a Glastonbury virgin I've been told the food is one of the best parts of the festival! That being said it's rare that you eat three square meals a day when festivalling. Freeze a couple of ice blocks and pack some easy to prep food. A pint of milk will keep fine for the first day, perfect for campsite brews & to put in your cereal pots! Make a few butties to scoff when you feel peckish, nothing more depressing than soggy warm cheese sarnies. Cold, crunchy apples are bliss when you're feeling a hangover and a couple of cartons of fruit juice in the cool box are perfect for dry-mouth morning refreshment!

5) Bring on the booze: Ahh alcohol one of the main expenses of a festival! For the campsite decant all your glass into plastic bottles, bring bag wine or those cute cocktails in squishy bags. Luckily at Glastonbury you can take your own alcohol into the arena which is unheard of at all the festivals I've attended! I've bought a few reusable water pouches for transporting my rum around like a well equipped lady-pirate. The pouches even have a fastening to attach to your belt loops! How chic :)

6) Decant don't downsize! N'aww mini's why are you so damn cute! Little teeny, tiny version of my shower gel that probably won't last 3 days or adorable handbag size dry shampoo that will run out after two blasts on the fringe! The best thing to do is buy a pack of empty bottles from Poundland and pour your beauty regime into them. Obviously you can't decant dry shampoo but buy a bigger size coz believe me the tiny ones won't last.

7) Free samples: You really don't want to weigh down your precious backpack with a huge load of toiletries so this is where free samples really come in handy. Sachets are perfect as they are lightweight and will usually last a couple of uses. Free sachets of shampoo/conditioner & body lotions that you get from magazines are ideal. Other options are asking for sample pots in stores. At The Body Shop we offer free samples, Lush have little black pots & most beauty counters will be able to offer you a sample. My word of advice is be polite when asking and don't take the pee and ask for loads. Little tiny 3ml perfume samples are great for your bumbag too :)

8) Leave the fancy stuff at home: Trust me you don't want to bring your designer make-up to a festival it's more than likely going to get crushed at the bottom of your handbag or could potentially get rained on. Plus-sad but true- some people go to festivals with the main objective to steal peoples belongings. You'd be gutted if your whole make-up bag worth £££s got stolen. I'd take only a few essential, multi-purpose products and maybe get a few cheap and cheerful brighter pieces of make up for festival make-up madness.

9) Charity shop gems I'm sorry but I can't go a whole post without mentioning my beloved charity shops. There is no point in splashing out on perfect, crisp clothes from Topshop or Zara when it's more than likely going to get covered in a coating of mud/cider/rain. My outfits of choice will always be something kooky from the charity shop that look amazing but I'm not precious about.

10) Layering Have a lovely summer outfit planned, cute dress and wellies? Now prepare to bust out the layers. Carry round a light, long-sleeve top & leggings/tights as with our glorious unpredictable British summer it could change at any moment. A mac in a sac/poncho is also wise for avoiding the downpours. A cosy jumper and thick socks are a good idea when the sun goes down. A huge scarf can be used in a multitude of ways and a beanie hat will hide your dutty hair ;) Basically be prepared for all weather. I've had to do an emergency dash to the clothing stalls at festivals to buy a huge jumper or waterproof and you can avoid the expense if you plan ahead :)

And there we have it-I hope this post will save you some pennies! 
Are you going to a festival this summer?
Happy festivalling :)
Rachelle xxx



Hello my lovelies!
Wahey it's June-It's technically Summer & I can't wait to fully embrace life in the park and the *fingers crossed* warmer weather! So nothing particularly outstanding happened in May but here's a round up of what I'm loving at the moment...

Currently WATCHING: The Vampire Diaries! Series Finale-Ahh mah gaaaahd. I have a lotta love for The Vampire Diaries and anyone who doesn’t watch it will probably think its utter crap but the storyline twists are keeping me interested. It’s getting a little complicated/farfetched now but I don’t mind coz I like to swoon over the Salvatore brothers ;) Who watches it?
Currently READING: Crazy Sexy Kitchen by Kris Carr. I borrowed this book from the library and I’ve really enjoyed reading it. I’m not planning on becoming a vegan anytime soon but it’s great to get a bit of veggie food inspiration. The desserts look delicious and I can’t wait to try out some of the recipes, plus Kris writes in such a kooky-cute style you feel like you’re having a chat with a good buddy!

Currently WEARING: 
This might not count as I’ve only just got it off eBay but I bought the Drop Dead Watermelon top/dress! It cannot be a dress on me thanks to my lady-giantness but it looks SO cute tucked into my denim shorts. It was only a tenner brand new so I’m chuffed with my little bargain.
Currently AMAZED BY: Solar Fricking roadways! You may have seen this video pop up on Facebook. It looks like it’s going to be a viral hit! It makes soo much sense though! Some people are genius! I’m really annoyed that Preston have spend thousands reworking the roadways into the city centre and didn't think to incorporate disco roads from the future into the plans.


Currently LOOKING FORWARD TO: Starting yoga classes. Now I have a yoga buddy (oh heey Hayley) & the new wellbeing centre has yoga classes every day I can’t wait to start going to a couple of sessions. Hot yoga has been suggested but I think it’s better to do a few normal classes before jumping into the sweaty deep end. All I need to buy is a mat (& maybe some cute yoga clothes) and I’m set to go! I think TKMaxx usually have a decent range of mats & accessories. Is anyone a yogi regular here?
Currently LISTENING TO: Dancing in the moonlight by Thin Lizzy. This is another brainwashing from The Body Shop soundtrack at work. It’s mostly the same songs in a different order every day. I usually find myself singing them when I’m at home too. I didn’t even realise this was a Thin Lizzy song but it makes me want to be drunk & dance and I think that is a great quality in a song ;)

Currently PONDERING: What to pack for Glastonbury. So it’s only a couple of weeks til Glastonbury and I cannot contain myself, I literally burst into and excited ‘eeeeeeeee’ whenever I think about it! So far my crisis is what to pack, obviously I know to pack baby wipes and glitter and the usual shebang but do I take sandals for the campsite, do I buy a crap phone just in case, where can I buy a disposable camera?! It’s these burning questions that I need to find the answer to haha. I should probably buy a decent rucksack too as I’ll be carrying my body weight in tie-dye & rum ;)

Currently BUYING: A juicer! I've not decided on one yet, but I watched the Super Juice Me documentary this weekend and the health benefits of juice are fricking crazy. I don't know whether to invest in one capable of wizardry or just get a bog standard one and see how much I use it. I genuinely use my blender every day so I know it wouldn't just gather dust. I really fancy some zingy fresh juice. I spend ridiculous money on the cartons anyway so I guess in the long term it makes financial sense ;) 
What are you guys loving so far this month?
Thanks for reading :)
Rachelle xxx



Hello everyone,
A couple of weeks ago I ventured to Manchester to the central convention complex to delve into the magical world of health and well-being at The Mind Body & Soul experience. It was a great day and I got to expand my spiritual mind with my buddy Stace :) We attended a meditation class, had our auras read, aligned chakras, experienced spiritual chanting, ate and drunk all the free samples, entered all the yoga retreat competitions, applied ALL the organic beauty products and swooned over all the beautiful crystals. In hindsight I wished I'd worn more appropriate yoga clothes so I could've joined in with some of the classes but it was still a lovely day.

Here is a little bit of a wishlist/oops I bought it already list from the event! If I had more money I probably would've bought one of everything! There were so many great stalls...

I seriously watched the Omniblend blender demonstration for about 45 minutes. I was mesmerised! It made mango sorbet in 3 minutes and then 'raw' hot soup in 5 minutes! I need one in my life. My smoothies would be the smoothest in the land. It's £250 which is a little out of my price range but I genuinely do use my blender at least once a day so it's definitely an investment appliance!

As you guys know, I'm a coconut oil fiend, love it for cooking, moisturising and as a hair treatment. As my beloved Lucy Bee oil is coming to an end I thought I'd try another brand. Coconoil was for sale at a special show price so I decided to give it a whirl. I've not actually started using it yet but I'll do a review between them both once I've tried it a few times.

The Yogi Tea stand was another one where we spent a bit of time sampling all the delicious teas, I love fruit teas but I'm not a big fan of herbal ones as I think they taste a bit stale. We tried their chai latte and it was delicious. I've only tried chai tea a few times but I stocked up on teabags so I can make my own lattes at home :)

Ahhh Teeki's stall was one of my favourites! I'm a fan of black milk designs and Teeki has got the amazing digital vibe going on but all of their products are made from recycled bottles-cool huh? As I've been getting more into my fitness recently I would love to go jogging with mystical unicorns on my legs everyday, at £47.50 they're not cheap but they were fantastic quality and the label had mermaids on! Whimsy eco-babe, chic at it's greatest! Also they do the same designs in mini sizes which are super cute. I can just imagine me & my little sister hula-hooping in matching unicorn legs :) They also have a sweet Instagram which I think you should follow!

Obviously I'm going coco-loco over here as I've recently become obsessed with coconut milk as a diary alternative. The strawberry Koko milk is absolutely dreamy, as is the chocolate flavour. It's a shame the flavour isn't more natural but it still tastes amazing, I bought one of each and they did not last long ;) You can buy this range at most supermarkets or at your local health shop.

Whilst at the exhibition I attended a workshop by Marie-Claire Carlyle based on how to be a spiritual money magnet. After being a bit apprehensive it was pretty insightful and I now want to get my hands on her book! It was all about breaking down your barriers and negative beliefs associated with money and how to attract abundance into your life. It was great to have a room full of people sharing their opinions and experiences, it was definitely a mixed group but I think we all got a lot out of the session.

All in all it was a great day and it opened my mind to the weird and whimsical! Thanks Om Yoga for the tickets :)

Have you ever been to an event like this? Would you say you were a spiritual person?
Thanks for reading :)
Rachelle xxx



Hello Everyone,
I'm a little late with posting this but I wanted to share my little venture with y'all :) On Easter Sunday (shh I know that was ages ago) My boss and I decided to go 'halfsies' on a stall at The Continental in Preston which is hosted by Riverside Vintage. After a couple of weeks of  lunch-hour treasure-hunting and rooting through our wardrobes we had gathered an eclectic mix of clothing, accessories, jewellery & homeware. My input was mainly trend-inspired, kooky, re-worked vintage whilst Rach had a gorgeous collection of bags & jewellery from her globe-trotting adventures.
We were really pleased with how the stall looked and we both had a successful day for first-timers! It was fairly quiet but that was to be expected on Easter Sunday. There were plenty of other lovely stalls with fantastic clothing, homeware & crafts to offer.
If vintage is your thang I'd totally recommend a visit to one of the events, they're not as regular as others but give the Facebook page a like :) I've got the vintage bug again and we've already signed up to do another fair next month at Cedar Farm which should be fun!

Have you ever had your own vintage stall before?
Thanks for reading :)
Rachelle xxx