Archive | September, 2011

The battered leather bag

29 Sep

How beautiful is this weekend bag by Vida Vida? It has completely captured my imagination, I’m yearning for some old school travel via the Orient Express or with a sticker-covered suitcase in tow in some exotic destination. As practical as wheelie cases are, they just tend to look the same and show no personality at all. This distinctive bag has a bit of a vintage look, as it’s all natural leather the colours will vary giving it a slightly battered look, the sort of look that makes you wonder where it’s been and what it’s seen on it’s travel. Much more interesting than a non-descript black wheelie case! I don’t think I’ll be taking it on the Orient Express anytime soon, but I could just imagine taking it for a short weekend jaunt to The Cotswolds with a really low-key outfit – some comfy flat ankle boots, a pair of battered Levis cut offs, a casual Alexander Wang tee and perhaps a big floppy bag. 

Getting the swish factor

28 Sep

Picture beautiful, perfect waves. The type that’s shiny, bouncy and looks totally effortless – I’m a big fan of the effortless hair look, there’s no point in looking like you’ve had a battle with the hairdryer, straighteners, curlers and a bottle of hairspray! That Serena van der Woodsen easy, breezy, flipable hair. You know what I mean, right? Unfortunately, that type of hair is unattainable by mere mortals. My thick, tumbling locks go flat at the mere mention of a hairdryer so when I had a black tie ball to attend recently, I called in the big guns – Joe’s Salon.

I was a little stressed and tired upon entering the salon and explained to the lovely Oray that I wanted ‘sort of wavy, maybe a little curly, beautiful hair’ in a very vague manner before my hair was transformed. It was a pretty big job, my hair was sectioned and dried using a round brush then my hair was neatly rolled up into a little curl before Oray moved onto the next section. He must have arms of steel after painstakingly tending to my thick mane. After he took the pins out and we shook my hair out, I definitely had big diva Beyonce-esque waves but they settled into a shiny swish of subtle waves which looked uber natural.

I was a little bit stressed about what to wear for the ball and eventually settled on the gorgeous ‘Samantha’ dress by French Connection. I don’t usually shop there but I fell in love with this dress as soon as I saw it. They do an update of their gold sequin dress every autumn/winter and this is my absolute favourite. It’s a little low at the front so I had to pin it, but other than that it fit perfectly. I paired it with some semi sheer tights and my lovely charcoal Georgia Rose courts from Sarenza. I wanted to keep the rest of the outfit plain to dress down the gold sparkles a little but the dark tights and dark shoes had a leg lengthening effect too which was a bonus. I was going to go for a black and gold vintage clutch but it just seemed a bit too matchy, so I went for a deliberate mismatch with this stone, highlighter yellow and snakeskin oversize clutch from Marks & Spencer Limited Collection

Wednesday Wish List: The owl trend

28 Sep

Woo knew that owls would be such a big
trend on the high street?! Let’s face it, they aren’t the cutest or most obvious animal to like, unless you’re Michael from Anastasia & Duck! I remember
they first appeared on the high street, it was actually quite a few seasons ago on necklaces at Forever 21, Topshop
and the like. It seemed like a short and sweet microtrend but a quick glance down the high street and you’ll see an
abundance of owl print on clothing as well as the owl jewels which we’ve seen
everywhere. It seems like owls are the new swallow/bird/butterfly/insert animal
trend here but there’s more to the owl trend than a random surge in popularity
of a particular animal. Marc Jacobs used an owl motif in his AW09 collection
and owls were also a huge trend in the Seventies, which is one of the stand out
trends of this season. Cute and quirky, there are so many different incantations of owls whether it’s a realistic owl print or an adorable cartoon version. If you’re a fan of adorable owls, here are my top picks
on the high street:

Clockwise from top left:

Jersey Pearl’s Fiore Della Notte collection

27 Sep

Settling down for afternoon tea at sublimely decadent The Dorchester was the perfect setting for checking out the stunning new collection from Jersey Pearl. Established 25 years ago, the family run business is one of the UK’s leading pearl jewellery specialists. More than just beautiful, timeless pearls, Jersey Pearl have developed close relationships with their pearl farmers to offer CarbonNeutral pearls by offsetting the carbon footprint of pearl farming through renewable energy projects.

The Fiore Della Notte collection is a collaboration with ethical jewellery designer Annaloucha, using recycled 18ct blackened gold from Hoover & Strong, CarbonNeutral Akoya pearls and fairly mined Tanzanian rubies which were sourced by Ruby Fair. The collection is super exclusive and limited edition, each piece is made on request and engraved with it’s own serial number so you can be sure you’re one of a select few with that piece. 

Chambord Platinum Lounge at LFWe

27 Sep

Is it just me or does LFW give anyone
the overwhelming urge to shop? Seeing so many inspiring shows and jaw-dropping
outfits just seems to whet my shopping whistle. My beloved high street stores
don’t do it for me right after fashion week; I’m always after something a
little more unique and luxe, so thank the shopping Lord for London FashionWeekend! I know us bloggers can get a teeny bit snooty about LFWe after
experience the extravaganza of LFW proper, but if you take it for what it is (a
fabulous shopping event) then it’s great. Plus, who can argue with a bargain, I
almost snapped up a Roberto Cavalli skirt in perfect condition for £90! I’ve
got to admit, I haven’t found anything as amazing since it’s decamped to
Somerset House from the Natural History Museum but there are plenty of reasons
to visit.

Along with all of the fantastic
shopping, there are also regular fashion shows in the main LFW tent and a Platinum
Club Lounge hosted by the lovely folks at Chambord who have been sponsoring
London’s chicest shopping event for 10 years! Offering a welcome respite from
all of the retail therapy going down with a Chambord and champagne or three, this
year they also had leading fashion photographer Fabio Affuso in attendance to
show you how to shine in photos. Bloggers and non-bloggers alike know it’s not
that easy to pose in front of a camera, so naturally, I jumped at the chance to
pop down to the Chambord Platinum Club Lounge, hang out with Fabio and learn
all about how to pose like a top model.
I thought I’d feel a bit self-conscious
but Fabio was so lovely, giving me some great direction on how to pose and work
the angles of my face. Clearly not a professional, I couldn’t help but giggle
in between shots but Fabio was great. Although you should always work with your
setting and outfit, he gave me some great tips to share with you guys:
The most important thing is to relax and feel good about
yourself.  If you feel fabulous you will look fabulous too!
Everyone feels most comfortable with one side of their face, and most likely
that is their better side.  Discover your best side and make
it shine!
3. Light is
a very important aspect. Position yourself so that the light shapes your face
and highlights your best side.
Some people love to pucker their lips and brows, but don’t
overdo it.  It can look good with some faces, however if you do it all the
time soon your pictures will look all the same.
The best models are the ones who can offer different expressions and
emotions through their facial and body language. Try to offer to the camera
something different all the time; don’t get locked in one expression.
Remember to have fun!

Thank you to Fabio and Chambord for a lovely afternoon! 

Marks & Spencer AW11 accessories collection

26 Sep

Last week, I was invited to a fabulous Mad Hatter’s Tea Party hosted by M&S to showcase their seriously covetable accessories collection. I’ve been a long time fan of M&S accessories, one of my favourite oversize clutches is from the Limited Collection. Held at the beautiful Kettner’s champagne bar, the wood panelled walls and high ceilings gave the venue an old school, sophisticated gentlemen’s club  feel which was the perfect setting for showing off the decadent collections from Marks & Spencer.
The Boy Meets Girl Collection – As the name suggests, slightly androgynous. Think lace up boots, the softest knits, buckles and tassled loafers.

The Global Traveller Collection – A riot of shiny sequins, bright colours glinting glitter and gorgeous textures. The cutaway ankle boots are on my lust list.

The Wilderness Collection – Earthy colours combined with animal prints, tactile knits and faux fur for a luxe, bohemian collection. 

The Nordic Narnia Collection – Think twinkling, glittering trinkets in icy cool shades of silver, ice blues and pretty pinks with the softest, cosiest knits and slippers.

Competition: Win a pair of tickets to Britiain & Ireland’s Next Top Model Live 2011

25 Sep

Fans of Britain & Ireland’s Next Top Model rejoice, the wonderful live event is making it’s much anticipated return to London’s ExCel Centre from 28-30th October 2011. Based on the only must-watch reality show for fashionistas, it’s described at the ultimate weekend fashion, beauty and shopping extravaganza. As some of you may remember, I actually worked at the last event, helping to style one of the catwalk shows with my take on the geek chic look. I had so much fun at the event, shopping up a storm, getting some pampering in and of course watching the amazing catwalk shows.

Fashion Daydreams have teamed up with BINTMLive to offer two lucky readers the chance to win a pair of admission entry tickets to this year’s event! To be in with a chance of winning, simply answer the following question by commenting on this post along with your Twitter handle or email address.

Question: Who is the glamourous host of Britain & Ireland’s Next Top Model show?

*Terms and conditions

1. This offer is only open to UK residents
2. Competition winner’s tickets are valid for any one day of Britain & Ireland’s Next Top Model Live,
being held at ExCeL London between the 28th – 30th October 2011.
3. These tickets are Admission ONLY.
4. Tickets are non transferable
5. Complimentary tickets obtained through this offer may not be duplicated.
6. All tickets will be scanned on entry to the show
7.The closing date for this offer is Wednesday 28th September 2011.