Bilbao Style Diary: Waiting for Autumn

My name is Harriet Cotmore and I’m a style addict. I wrote for Razz on fashion and style last year and even made it onto Fashion in the Forum’s Best Dressed of the year. I came second and I’m not a sore loser but…oh who am I kidding? I so should have won. No prizes for guessing what my Razz column will be on this year. The difference being that this time around I’m corresponding from Bilbao, Spain, whilst I complete my year abroad. I guess that means I won’t make it back onto The Tab this year so I hope you’re all doing Exeter proud.

Bilbao Style Diaries

I’m a month into my time here and so far I’m feeling very overwhelmed by the abundance of Zaras and very underwhelmed by my bank balance. Prior to my heading out on my biggest adventure to date, everyone seemed to be excited about my inevitable tan. Inevitable. Tan. I’m on the North Coast of Spain which means, whilst yes it is much warmer than the UK, now that it’s October I shan’t be strolling around in my bikini. Equally as much as I would just love to be layering myself in knitted scarves and faux fur, Bilbao doesn’t quite seem to have that Pumpkin Spiced Latte weather yet; they just don’t taste the same in twenty degree plus heat. Whilst I’m genuinely missing that British crisp air and my cosy Doc Martens, I’m prepared to strike a compromise for beautiful Bilbao.

The real weather issue here is that I start the day, post Yorkshire tea (I may be in Spain but I haven’t forgotten what a proper brew is), by catching the metro to work and it’s verging on coat weather. Oh coat weather is but a myth over here. I later find it’s positively British summer weather. In October. This Brandy Melville dress I picked up in Amsterdam has been a godsend. All Brandy Melville cotton is divine. Unfortunately, my nearest Brandy Melville store is Madrid and I’m not sure I can quite justify flying across the country for that cotton but oh I am tempted. This dress is so comfy and easy to wear. I don’t feel it calls for much accessorising besides my usual rings and stud earrings. I can throw on my leather jacket for the cooler periods and of course I always have a pair of sunglasses to hand for when it brightens up. For a relaxed Sunday walk around the city I completed the outfit with my white leather converse and Zara clutch.

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Whilst I wait for Spanish autumn I’ll continue my daily battle of ‘is it tights weather?’ and other struggles such as ‘why do people wear nothing but jeans?’ and ‘maybe I need some new jeans’. Clearly I am tackling the real year abroad questions you are all dying to know. Check back in a couple of weeks for more on Bilbao style but for now I’ve seen another turtle neck in Zara.


Dress – Brandy Melville

Bag – Zara

Jacket – Oasis

Shoes – Converse

Sunglasses – ASOS


Harriet Cotmore

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