Getting Ahead Of Myself...

16 April 2014

I'm always doing things in the wrong order these days.  I bought a yoga mat without being able to do Pigeon properly and ordered a bikini with no beach holiday planned.  Sometimes these instances spur me on to take action and taking part in a homeware shopping challenge at the London Designer Outlet has got me doing just that.  I'm now getting acquainted with Spareroom.com and attempting to downsize all of the stuff under the bed.  I didn't even know there were outlets in London, a trip to Bicester always used to be a rarity that happened twice a year if that and usually brought about disappointment when I realised I still couldn't afford anything in Mulberry.  Although LDO doesn't quite have the same labels, it's actually pretty decent for bits to brighten up your home.  With £100 to spend and two hours to do it in, I managed to find a few creative storage ideas and the brightest cutlery known to man.

heart shaped cake tin
bright yellow cutlery
Modernist clock
pretty plate for beauty products
ways to store make-up brushes
heart shaped measuring cups
polka dot towels

So what did I end up buying?  I still have a lot of the basics from University, so I went for a few aesthetically pleasing upgrades like the Viners yellow cutlery set (for £6 you can't go wrong) and the spotty towels from Christy.  After my visit to the Midcentury Modern fair I managed to pick up this M&S clock that reminds me of a few I saw there.  A few of the frivolous buys included some Crabtree & Evelyn drawer liners, that also double up as a handy backdrop for Instagram snaps.  As a blogger you've always got to think about creative ways to capture things and it's worth going to places out of the ordinary and picking up things like wallpaper or nice towels.  Expect to see some of these bits popping up on a regular basis!

London Designer Shopping Outlet Wembley
Crabtree & Evelyn Outlet
villeroy and boch pretty plates
Lindt chocolate outlet

These are some of the bits that got away, forget using plates for food, I just want to use them for storage!  Villeroy & Boch had some really pretty styles that would be perfect for displaying earrings or lipsticks.  At first I thought it would be really easy to spend the budget but after visiting every relevant shop and compiling a little list, I had to prioritise things I could use now over bits for any future bachelorette pad.  I'd definitely bear LDO in mind when I'm a little more settled and have a bit more of a homeware plan.  Seeing Lucy's new digs has definitely got me thinking about all things interior and I'm hoping this Bright Bazaar book I've bought will give me a few ideas too. 

Let me know if you're starting to get obsessed with all things homeware too, there's definitely something in the water!

A Casual Sunday

13 April 2014

how to style black skinny jeans

As much as I love the idea of Spring, the reality is a tad confusing.  I feel like I'm on tenterhooks somewhat, waiting to wear some of these bits but instead end up putting on a lot of practical, transitional sort of stuff.  I delved a bit further into this in my Metro blog post, it's a bit of a guide to getting dressed by the Celsius.  Literally I will check BBC weather every day over my cornflakes and each of those numbers means to me something like, wear a dress, put some tights on or shorts are acceptable now.  It's so important for me to be comfortable and practical, my umbrella is indestructible and with me even at the slightest hint of light rain plus I have an array of shorts to wear under dresses just in case the wind is against me.  I have all based covered so when the weather threw up a bit of a confusing conundrum last weekend, I resorted to Operation Denim.

Morocco Street Bermondsey
casual outfit for transitional Spring weather
Bermondsey Street London Bridge
Bermondsey Street London Bridge
Bellea Freud Barbour Daisy Jumper
Paige Verdugo mid-rise skinny jeans
chunky heels and glittery socks
Bermondsey Street London Bridge

Trench - COS (similar here)
Socks & Sandals - Urban Outfitters

So it's very rare that you see me in jeans on here and especially not black skinny ones.  I've got spotty ones, faded ripped ones, bright blue, floral and even Aztec but for some reason I hadn't got around to buying the staple pair that every wardrobe seems to have. To me they always seemed a little too anonymous with nothing to hide behind and even when I play it casual, I always need to have something going on.  This time I left the 'something something' to the Bella Freud for Barbour jumper, with its uplifting daisy motif.  It's comfortably slouchy and ideal for this neither-here-nor-there weather.  The Paige jeans are a far cry from the Primark ones I started my skinny jeans journey with back in 2006.  We started off well but soon enough they ended up being a bit of a straight leg/boyfriend hybrid and I never ended up replacing them until now.  I think these will be my go-to pair whenever the weather is a bit rotten, so now I'm on the hunt for interesting tops to wear them with (I'm so envious of Camilla's collection).

Bermondsey Street London Bridge
Grow Wild seed planting gig with Neon Jungle
Grow Wild seed planting gig with Neon Jungle
Grow Wild seed planting gig with Neon Jungle

I'm always passing through London Bridge but it's somewhere I never really paused to discover, bar the odd visit to Borough Market or the Fashion & Textile Museum.  The street names sound like something out of a novel (take your pick from Lamb Walk, Crucifix Lane and Morocco Street where we snapped) and there's the usual mix of independent shops and cool bars/restaurants that I love to document.  Bermondsey is like the perfect village but with awesome transport prospects and a stones throw away from The Shard (something I only just realised was right outside the station, doh).  After a leisurely brunch at Village East, we hotfooted it to the Grow Wild event, an initiative to transform unloved spaces with wild flowers.  Gardens may be a rarity for much of us but the odd plant or window box here and there can make a world of difference.  I was given some seeds of my own to plant, which I've passed on to my sister for the best chance of survival.  It's been a while since I've looked after anything other than cress.  I'll let you know how I get on!

Recreate:

Mothers' Meeting

11 April 2014

best afternoon tea in London

I never thought I'd say this, but it seems I'm becoming a bit of an afternoon tea veteran in recent years.  It seems like the perfect way to experience somewhere swanky without being completely shocked at the bill (I do love a fixed price) plus you never leave hungry due to the constant replenishment.  Although I don't mind queuing in the cold for a decent burger (I'm looking at you Meat Liquor) sometimes it's nice to have a calm civilised affair and to get a taste of how the other half live in some of these grand establishments that are tucked away.  When the Millenium Hotel in Mayfair organised a bloggers afternoon tea for Mother's Day, my Mum jumped at the chance to dress up in her finery and spend the day with her first-born.  It's funny that when we're together we seem like a bit of a comedy double act, plus it's always interesting (and surreal) to observe the dynamic between others and their Mums.  You can see where Lucy gets her love of colour from!

nice areas in London to visit
Grosvenor Square Mayfair
Mothers' Meeting
best afternoon tea in London
pretty Mother's Day flowers
best afternoon tea in London
Grosvenor Square Mayfair
nice areas in London to visit
nice areas in London to visit
Mother and daughter

The selection of pastries here was one of my favourites to date and we had to be rather diplomatic when working out who could have the sole crème brûlée (luckily they brought us some more).  When everything is on a pretty tower, eating savoury before sweet tends to go out the window, so we went from tasty chicken and tarragon sandwiches, to scones thoughtfully paired with clotted cream and lemon curd and back again.  Once that was devoured, we were off to my Nan's for yet another Jamaican dinner and even more cake.  This is why I'm not a bodycon kind of girl.

A special thanks to the Millennium Hotel for putting on such a fantastic event.  Usually we're communicating from our rooms whilst on various devices, so it was nice to have a proper day out!
 
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