Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Sunday Selfie: Trusted Zara Jumpsuit

Black Zara jumpsuit
I love it when you have a staple piece you can pull out season after season, year after year.This jumpsuit from Zara is one of them and I definitely made a good purchase here. I've just had my birthday weekend and wore this outfit for a Sunday lunch with one of my good friends. I had been in heels and a restrictive dress the night before, so wanted to wear something a little more casual that would allow me to.. erm eat a hearty lunch. My Zara jumpsuit never fails as it's comfortable and loose fitting but still smart. I went for an all black ensemble despite the sunshine to mark the inevitable Autumn Winter change. I accessorised with my my gold sparkly Espadrilles , 3 quarter length leather jacket (which I've also had for years) and trusted bad hair day hat, both from H&M . What's your Sunday look all about? 
Black Zara jumpsuit

Just had to share what my gal pal Natasha wore that day too. Not only is she the uber fashionista (keep telling her to do her own blog), our unplanned outfits seemed to match perfectly. Anyone would think we are in a girl band ;-) 

Sunday, 14 September 2014

It's all about Double Denim

How to wear double denim

It took me a while to come around to the idea that I could pull off the popular double denim trend. I loved seeing it on other people but wasn't quite sure how I could make it work for my style and shape, so I experimented. My denim shirt believe it or not, is from Primark! I never invest or spend too much money on a look I'm unsure about until I give it a trial run(and at £10 the shirt was a no brainer purchase). I have to say that though it won't last me long, I really love the cut and colour of this shirt, not to mention the pocket detail. Not only will it work with all my jeans and denim shorts, it will also go with  things like pencil skirts, black trousers or leather pants, and layered up casually with leggings and a plain t-shirt.
How to wear double denim
How to wear double denim
The look is kind of cowgirl inspired with a more street, urban twist. My jeans are from the River Island denim range but I've already ripped a hole in them as I've worn them all summer, so will  need to invest in some good quality ones.  Jbrands or Paige jeans, seem to be the only brands that suit my body shape and can last me  a while. My trusted accessories include my H&M hat, Ray-ban sunnies and Michael Kors Watch.

How to wear double denim

How to wear double denim

These lovely photos were taken by the talented Brighton based photographer Emma Gutteridge. I really wanted to work with a professional (no offence to my usual iPhone snapper and friend Tom) who knew how to work with dark skin. A lot of photographers get it wrong with black women because they are either too harsh with lighting or frankly don't provide enough! We took these in the summer a few weeks ago (which is why my hair is different) and we were also actually blessed with a sunny day. Many thanks to Emma for making me look oh so profesh.

Outakes - ( I call this my Britney face) 

Sunday, 7 September 2014

It's all about the Peplum Bodycon

With my birthday coming up in a couple of weeks, I'm on the hunt for the perfect outfit so when Lavish Alice  got in touch for me to review one of their gorgeous new collections, I jumped at the chance. I decided to go for the powder blue bodycon dress, as I loved the colour and peplum detail. I was hoping to shoot it on a sunny day (Indian summer my ....) but the grey clouds didn't get to show how nicely the tone compliments my skin.

Though I have my fair share of bodycon dresses, I feel this one is more wearable for occasions like weddings or evening parties as the peplum bodice flatters your shape and the spagetti straps give it a sophisticated feminine silhouette. I also love the fact that they go perfectly with my newly purchased Jimmy Choos, which are already proving to be an amazing investment. 

Many thanks to my friend and photographer Tom for taking these shots

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Out and about: The Chiltern Firehouse

The Chiltern Firehouse restaurant and bar Marylebone

Last weekend, my close girlfriend and I had drinks at one of the most talked about London hotspots of  the year,The Chiltern Firehouse. Living in Brighton for so long has meant that I'm completely out of the loop on the new London openings, and  missed the hype around the Chiltern opening earlier this year. My friend had been to dinner a few weeks before and had nothing but rave reviews so I was intrigued to see what it was all about.
As soon as we arrived, I felt like I had been taken back in time to  when I was living in LA many years ago, and stayed at the  gorgeous  Chateau Marmont  hotel. Because I was probably hiding under a rock at the time (seriously, I can't believe I missed this), I didn't realise that  The Chiltern is in fact owned by Andre Balazs, the same man behind the Mercer in New York,  The Standard hotels in the US, and of course Chateau Marmont.  

I can't tell you how beautifully layed out this former fire station in Marylebone is. As his first ever property outside the US, I instantly felt the Balazs's stamp, and excited that London finally has its very own Chateau Marmont replica. The cool, glamorous ambiance still resonates but the fire station theme gives it more of an English/London feel, which I loved. 
On this occasion, we went for Sunday drinks and snacks on the outside terrace, to make the most of the final summer days. I had the signature crab stuffed doughnuts as a snack, but based on the way those tasted, I'd like to go back and order everything on the menu! 

I wish I had taken photos but I remember that Chateau had a strict no photographs policy so didn't want to get in trouble or worse kicked out! ( though I have seen lots of reviews with photos online since) 
I definitely want to explore the menu over a lunch or dinner and do a review though by the looks of it I'll  have to wait as its already fully booked till December!
I also have to point out that The Chiltern has the friendliest most helpful service team. As per usual, I had iPhone charge issues and the hosts were only happy to charge it for me at reception when I asked.  Being the calamity Jane that I am, I was then late for my next meet-up, so one of the guys kindly hailed me a cab from the main road, got in it and got the driver to stop just outside so I wouldn't have to walk. Excellent service goes a long way, and it has made me even more eager to go again. 
The Chiltern gets five stars from me :-) 

What I wore 

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Travels : Sunce Beat Festival Croatia

A few weeks ago, my close girlfriend and I ventured out to Croatia for the first time for the yearly Sunce Beat Festival. I have been hearing some great things about Croatia over the last couple of years so the festival was the perfect reason to experience it myself. Some have been saying Croatia is the new Ibiza but for someone who has been going to Ibiza every year for the last decade, I was apprehensive. I did end up having a great time but wished I'd had time to visit towns like Split and Hvar instead of staying in Tisno all week. Here are my initial thoughts on the country and the Festival.
Croatia is beautiful. It's understated, it's serene and as its only recently become a popular tourist destination, ( 5-6 years or so) it still retains some authenticity. The beaches aren't great. They are rocky and stoney, some even paved with concrete so if you're looking for white sands, you'll be disappointed ( though there maybe much better beaches in other parts I don't know about) .The sea however is lovely, crystal clear and calm and I would recommend it for the lucky ones  who are island hopping by boat or yacht.

One of the other things I loved was that everything was cheap!
Maybe I'm used to Ibiza prices but I thought it was great value for money especially with things like food, alcohol and taxis.  I also found people were really friendly and helpful but at the same time kept themselves to themselves. I would go again but think I need to see other islands like Hvar while I'm there to really get the best out of it.

Sunce Beat Festival
My friend and I decided to go to Sunce Beat as we have been going to (and been great fans of ) South Port Weekender  UK  for years.  South Port parties aren't not known for flashy hotels or glamours locations, but fantastic music from some of the UK's top DJ's.  There's always the sense that people go primarily for the music and I love about that sort of atmosphere.
Sunce Beat was very much the same in that sense. The crowd is older (say early 30's to 50's) with a complete diverse mix of people all there for the music. With boat parties, live PA's and beach bars,  there was enough change of scenery as you are basically on one festival site for the whole week. The only thing I was a little disappointed about (for me and my preference) was the lack of old school R&B and hip hop. As much as I love house music ( funky, soul and smooth) after a week, it got a little repetitive. The beauty of the South Port weekends were that entire rooms were dedicated to R&B and hip hop, from 90's 80's and old skool disco songs. You could dip in and out of genres, and get the best of both. However, if house music is your bag, you'll absolutely love it!  
What I wore
Not one pair of heels were worn on this holiday, hard to believe I know. I definitely kept it more casual and practically lived in shorts, flats and trainers! I actually made more of an effort in the day with my beachwear, and switched it up with various cover ups, tops and accessories. It's also great to give my skin a bit of a break and not wear as much make-up, as well as get some much needed vitamin D. Can't believe my summer holiday went so quickly! :-(

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Wanted: Gandy's flip flops

Summer might soon be ending but I still have my eye on these cute  flip flops I spotted in London last week. If you haven't heard of Gandys flip flops, (Not Gandhi but Gandys 2.0), you've been hiding under a rock because they've been absolutely everywhere from Selfridges, to Topshop and ASOS to Debenhams. This understated but cool brand came from a great concept (using 10% of profits to build children homes and orphanages in Sri Lanka) but is still at the heart of making fashionable easy to wear footwear. The latest collaboration with Liberty London however has to be my favourite yet. Available in six different models, I love the mix of Liberty's heritage signature design with Gandys youthful spirit, inspired by travelling and giving back. My eye is on the Felix and Isabelle pair, (supposedly for men but to me flip flops are unisex) with its weaved navy blue straps and kaleidoscope soles. Think this may need to be on my purchase list next time I'm in town. I do love the fact that it was founded by finding a way to give back and I feel less guilty with making a purchase. 
Gandys was started by brothers Rob and Paul Forkan following the tragic loss of their parents in the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami. They’ve since dedicated their time and energy to make this project work and help support their Orphans for Orphans initiative. I heard Rob speak at a seminar a few weeks back found the story is truly inspiring but loved the fact that fashion and style are still front of mind with such an amazing project. 

The ones I want Felix and Isabelle £30.00 

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Found:The vintage polka dot

I love the fact that summer inspires us to become more bold and experimental. I feel like I always need to take advantage of the warm weather and get the most out of my summer wardrobe before the dreaded layering up of coats and gloves. Polka dots always cheer me up, there's something fun and playful about them so when I found this old top I'd hidden away in my attic, it easily inspired the entire look. 

As predicted my Pull & Bear  jeans have come in very handy over the summer, allowing me to just get away with wearing a crop top ( really .. Just) I can't even remember where or when I bought this top but it must have definitely during my skinner days years ago. I now remember why it's in my archived pile, it's one of those tops you can't really wear after Pizza and a glass of wine ( er hem) 
My converse and hat gave it a bit more of a casual look making it fit well with the relaxed Brighton vibe.