Sunday, 31 July 2011

Pearls and playsuits

Recently, the lovely guys at Jersey Pearl asked me to take part in their 'rock your pearls' style challenge. The idea is to rock peals in a unique and interesting way. I actually adore peals and wear two pearl studs in my ears and a single pearl on a necklace everyday, I never take them off. Though I love them, I think some people can be a bit hesitant to wear them as they're quite 'classic'. That's why I chose to style them up in a very contemporary way, with a floral printed playsuit, tan platforms and my beloved Alexander Wang bag. The necklace I chose was a long freshwater pearl necklace which can either be worn long or looped around to make it shorter. 

Playsuit - Courtesy of Clothing at Tesco
Pearls - Courtesy of Jersey Pearl
Heels - Courtesy of Sarenza
Bag - Alexander Wang

Friday, 29 July 2011

Friday Fashion Fix

Bottega Veneta to launch first fragrance.

I’m excited to share the news that Bottega Veneta are set to launch their first ever fragrance in September! Super luxe fashion houses always create incredibly beautiful, intoxicating fragrances so I’m really looking forward to smelling Tomas Maier’s fragrance. The short film below gives a little insight into what we can expect. It features Nine d’Urso, daughter of Ines de la Fressange, who is the face of the fragrance. "I chose Nine to introduce this fragrance because there is something classically elegant about her, yet she is totally modern. She conveys a sense of heritage worn lightly but with respect", said Tomas Maier, Creative Director, Bottega Veneta.

Lulu Guinness is expanding her handbag empire to luggage collection. 

This is going to sound a little silly as there are so many luggage brands but I think Lulu has something special. Most luggage collections are practical brown or black which is all well and good, but I prefer looking out for something a little more distinctive on the baggage carousel, something with a bit more personality. There are of course the girly bright pink or purple cases – I’ve had a purple one in the past – but I’m talking sleek, sophisticated, grown up luggage. This is where there’s a gap in the market and precisely where Lulu’s luggage will fit in. The ‘sealed with a kiss’ collection features Lulu’s iconic lips design with seriously impressive luggage spec – 360 spinnerwheels amd TSA locks along with soft grip carry handles, high shine buttons, striped lining and internal packing sections. I think I need them all in my life!

Woolmark are proving fashion had feeling.

Woolmark’s new campaign aims to bring out the feelings and emotions behind our daily fashion choices. Named Fashion by Feelings, the site is an interactive lookbook site which allows you to upload an outfit into one of twelve categories, depending on how you feel, readers can then vote on their favourite. Being Woolmark, the theme is wool and all outfits must incorporate wool in some way. Very timely as it’s a bit nippy out and the autumn/winter collections are starting to trickle into stores. If you need an added incentive, the winning look will win an amazing $12,000 trip to Australia!

Style Compare brings all of your fashion favourites together.

This year, I’ve noticed a growing trend for fashion aggregators – websites which basically bring together lots of retailers into one handy place. I’ve spent a lot of time on Style Compare this week and I think they’re one of the best. They have over 1,500 labels on the site from retailers including ASOS, Topshop, All Saints, House of Fraser, Net-a-Porter, so instead of hopping from site to site looking for the perfect dress or shoes, you can check everything out from one place. What makes them different from similar fashion aggregators is that they are really passionate about independent designers and ethically sourced products; nurturing new talent to give them a platform to showcase their wares. 

Giveaway: Tickets to the Masters of Style exhibit.

The Masters of Style exhibit at Somerset House has been one of the most hotly anticipated fashion exhibitions this summer. It marks the 150th anniversary of Italy's unification by bringing together six influential Italian fashion houses to showcase images from their collections and archives. Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Ferragamo, Gucci, Missoni and Prada have taken part in the exhibition which has been curated by Peroni and Colin McDowell. Peroni have kindly given me two tickets to the exhibition. If you want to get your hands on them, please comment on this post along with your email address so I can contact the chosen few.


Thursday, 28 July 2011

First look: Pierre Balmain SS 2012

With t-shirts costing around £1,000 from main label Balmain, I was more than eagerly awaiting the arrival of the more affordable Pierre Balmain line. However, I had reservations after Christophe Decarnin parted ways with the label. New creative director Olivier Rousteing has had no part in the design either, it's been created by a separate design team. Hmmm. They have designed womenswear and menswear collections encompassing everything from eveningwear to jeans and tailoring, with t-shirts starting at £105 and eveningwear at £795; taking the price points from super wealthy only to wealthy only. My verdict? To be honest, I wasn't impressed. Balmain usually blows me away with it's super sexy, rock n roll aesthetic but this fell a little short. The likes of Miu Miu and Marc by Marc have set the bar so high for diffusion lines and this feels like a cheap imitation rather than a proper stand alone line. I'm not sure if Marc or Miuccia have much to do with their diffusion lines but it just feels like they are more finished as products and a whole collection. Mind you, this is just a snapshot so maybe it will get better. I do love the black sharply tailored jacket though. 

Launching in December with the Spring 2012 collection, the diffusion line will be available in stores worldwide while Paris, Milan, Rome and Hong Kong will have stand-alone boutiques. 


Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Wednesday Wish List - Pampering Treats

I'm having a pretty rough week which means two things: lots of moaning on Twitter (sorry!) but also a Wednesday Wish List full of lovely pampering treats. 

New Look geekasaurus pyjamas - £12.99

For me, pampering = staying in pjs, doing my nails and watching movies. Cute pyjamas are obviously a vital ingredient. I love these geekasaurus ones from New Look. Let's face it, anyone who has a blog is at least a half-geek so these are very apt. 

Boux Avenue Leonie silk robe - £85

Everyone needs a lovely silk robe to swish around the house in. There are lots of cheap satin ones on the high street, but for some proper pampering you need silk with a touch of lace. Perfect for curling up on the sofa with a hot chocolate and a movie. 

Miss Selfridge aztec print cardigan - £45

If lounging around in a robe isn't your thing, you can't beat some soft knits. I seem to have an ever growing pile of worn-to-death knits which are super soft and always make me feel good. The oversize shape of this cardi is perfect for snuggling up in but the bold print is far too nice to keep it for indoor wear only.  

Holistic Silk lavender eye mask - £41

Holistic Silk are the Chanel of the eye mask world, with their silk and velvet, lavender-scented ultra luxe eye masks. Lavender is such a soothing scent and instantly relaxes you so this is a must have for stressed out times. 


Ellesse Heritage pop-up shop, Shoreditch

A couple of weeks ago, I popped over to the Ellesse pop-up store in Shoreditch to check out their exclusive products and take a trip down memory lane. I remember Ellesse from my youth, it was a popular brand in an era where sportswear and fashion combined and everyone was wearing logo emblazoned clothing. I'm a bit too young to remember when the brand first took off, after a collaboration with French designer Jean-Charles de Castelbajac in the mid eighties but by the time I was growing up, it was one of the brands to be worn. The brand is back in 2011 with their pop-up Ellesse Heritage stores.

The store had a super fun set up, there was an Ellesse  branded ping pong table as well as retro adverts and an Ellesse scooter! The collection featured lots of tennis whites with their signature stripes as well as the eye-catching pops of colour they were known for. My favourites were the high top sneakers, I regret not getting a pair for the (very) odd day that I don't fancy heels. If you fancy a piece of the Italian sportswear action, you have until 3rd August to catch the pop-up at 77 Redchurch Street in Shoreditch.


Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Wearing jeans to work

I don't dress very smart for work. Sometimes I wear jeans, sometimes I just throw a dress and flats on and on the odd occasion I just pick the first thing I see. I'm fortunate enough to work in an environment where it's not really pertinent to dress smart, working in marketing means you're a creative type who needs the freedom to wear what they like whilst working for a fashion company is another obvious excuse....I mean reason.

In my defence, the outfit I wore today was semi-smart, I'm wearing a blouse. Ok, it may be sheer and it may tie up at the front but it still has a collar and buttons. As it's slightly cropped at the front (longer at the back), I wore a plain black vest top which I tucked into my jeans. The jeans are recently resurrected old favourites, super comfy, super bleached and super ripped at the knee. Sass & Bide jeans fit me really well, they don't have the horrid gape at the waistband which I detest. As for the shoes, I'm not sure wearing polka dot shoes with a floral blouse counts as clashing prints, they're both pretty subtle. These shoes are one of my comfy work shoes, luckily they're cute! This is a pretty typical work outfit for me, though I like to dress smarter from time to time. What do you wear to work? 

Cardigan - Dorothy Perkins
Floral blouse - New Look
Jeans - Sass & Bide
Shoes - New Look
Bag - Michael Kors

Monday, 25 July 2011

Karl Lagerfeld for Macys

If the sketches I posed in my Friday Fashion Fix post whet your whistle for more from Karl Lagerfeld's collection for Macys then your luck is in. A couple of images have been released which give a taster of his latest cut price collection. The 45 piece collection will his 235 Macys stores and the website on August 31st and prices range from $50 to $170. This pretty dress is $109 and is very girly and romantic, very different to Karl's collection with H&M almost seven years ago. 

Karl Lagerfeld for H&M.


Rest in peace, Amy Winehouse

I think the term ‘star’ is bandied around far too frequently, sure people may have talent but not everyone has ‘star quality’ and the required je ne sais quoi to make the world sit up and pay attention. Amy Winehouse is one of those people who had it and her untimely death this past weekend is a stark reminder that life is too short but also that she was an incredibly talented artist behind all of the tabloid headlines. I remember when her album ‘Frank’ was released almost 8 years ago; it was markedly different from anything else on the scene. Heavily jazz influenced, her voice belonged to a different era and it’s unsurprising that it earned her an Ivor Novello award as well as two Brit nominations and a spot on the Mercury Music Prize nominee list.

As her career was exploded like a supernova, it became clear that Amy was troubled and had many demons to battle. By the time ‘Back to Black’ came out three years later, her personal troubles began to eclipse her immense talent and many had written her off as a lost cause. ‘Back to Black’ bought her global fame and five Grammy awards. Still lyrically honest, she sang about emotional excess, romantic obsession, break ups and breakdowns. A telling insight into her emotional state, her addictions still persisted and though her career was going stellar her personal life continued in its downward spiral. Drink, drugs, destructive relationships. That’s not something I’m going to dwell on. Amy’s legacy will be her music and immense talent. She’s an icon of epic proportions; it’s such a shame that the same press who built her up were so quick to tear her down. Although addictions and mental illness are personal battles to some extent, people need the help and support of others to conquer the battle. This was perfectly summed up in Russell Brand’s article on Amy for The Guardian.

My thoughts are with Amy’s family at this tragic time and I hope that she has finally found peace. 


Friday, 22 July 2011

Friday Fashion Fix - July 2011

Mass exodus at Halston

Halston has been hitting the headlines on a nearly daily basis with big shock departures. Creative director Marios Schwab and board member Tamara Mellon are both out, alongside Sarah Jessica Parker and Harvey Weinstein. Times, they are a-changing. Watch this space for more news. 

Anja Rubik gets married!

Onto happier news, last weekend supermodel Anja Rubik married her model boyfriend in an intimate ceremony in Mallorca. Her dress was designed by Peter Dundas of Pucci. It was a very contemporary design, with a shorter front, the back was a more traditional longer longer back and train. It's not to everyone's taste though. What do you think? 

Dylan Lauren's stunning wedding dress. 

I'm sorry but the two Kates (Moss and The Duchess) cannot compete with Dylan Lauren's fairytale wedding dress, which was designed by her father Ralph Lauren. The dress is handmade duchesse-satin and silk tulle with a tiered nine-foot train. For me, this is the ultimate wedding dress, it's beautifully fitted and shows off her figure but also has the wow factor without straying into meringue territory. Perfection. 

Carine Roitfeld's styling V, inspired by Elizabeth Taylor. 

There is no stopping Carine Roitfeld. She already has two campaigns under her freelancing belt and she's set to make her return to styling magazine editorials in V's September issue. The 'Heroes Issue' features a 72-page story on Elizabeth Taylor and was shot by Mario Testino. Cannot wait to see this when it's out. 

Who's that girl? 

Read and then re-read this sentance: It's Katie Holmes. Yes Joey from Dawson's Creek. Yes, Mrs Tom Cruise. Yes, Suri's mother. What a transformation, bravo Vogue Spain. Looking forward to seeing more from this 9-page editorial which features beaucoup de Louis Vuitton. 

Karl Lagerfeld for...Macys!

Karl Lagerfeld's super affordable range for Macys is the most exciting news since, well, his sell out range for H&M. Macys have released these sketches which show a couple of pieces from the range which launches on August 31st. Check back over the weekend for images of the actual range. And don't forget to mark the date in your calendar!

* Source Cinematic Presse, Vogue, The Fashion Spot, Style News

The best blowdry in London

I've already posted about how wonderful the guys at Joe's Salon are and it really has become my salon of choice in London. Last week, I attended the Pepe jeans boat party and I squeezed in some time to visit Joe's Salon beforehand for a quick blowdry. There's something about the pristine white interior which is just so relaxing. The salon is such a beautiful space and an oasis of calm in the middle of bustling Mayfair.

Joe was as lovely as always, taking some time out from styling a VVIP celebrity to tend to my tresses. Joe worked his magic and transformed my usual messy mop top into a beautiful head of shiny, tumbling, slightly diva waves. It was the sort of 'do which bounces as you walk, attracts admiring glances and makes you feel like a million bucks. Huge thanks to Joe and the team for making me feel like a VVIP myself!


Thursday, 21 July 2011

Double florals

This is a rather optimistically summery outfit! I bought the skirt and shirt separately recently and immediately thought to team them up. Double floral print outfits may not be everyone's cup of tea, indeed Hilary Alexander warns against going OTT when wearing florals in her column for The Telegraph. I only stumbled upon the article whilst sitting in the office decked out in my floral outfit. Well, in for a penny, in for a pound as they say. The shades in the skirt are very vibrant whereas the shirt is more muted and washed out which I think worked well together. As my day involved a lot of walking/standing/travelling, I wore my denim wedges which are super comfy and go-to shoes for when I'm going to be out and about after work (I was off to the Pepe Singular gig that night, you can read my guest post on the evening here). The wedges a bit of a statement shoe due to all of the buckles but still simple enough to wear with an outfit like this without being overpowering. 

What's the verdict, will you try out double florals or is it a no-no? 
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