New beauty I picked up today at the Christopher Kane sample sale. Happy birthday to mee! I know I usually post the sample sale links on my blog but I’ve now moved it all to my facebook page to get better coverage, follow me there to hear all about them. Excited to have this iconic clutch join my collection!
It’s been a hot 27 degrees here in London for the past few days, and it’s seriously made me realise how winter my wardrobe is. I managed to find this amazing Helmut Lang top stuffed away in a drawer from last year; it’s time it went back into circulation I think! My brother’s staying with me in London for a few days, which means; serious chill time in the sun, showing him around the neighbourhood and visiting favourite eateries, all before my birthday tomorrow!
The second instalment of my accessories shoot with Bengt and nail artist So Hot Right Nail. These were my favourite nails, hands down and I kept them on for a couple of weeks, until picking off the gems one by one became just too satisfying. Totally head over heels for all the Imogen Belfield jewellery, it’s like wearing rocks straight from the mine! Also, the coolest up and coming handbag designer, Danielle Foster, all the bronze and matt leathers are too irresistible to me! To see more amazing up and coming talent, go straight to BENGT.
Since my lens seems to have been firmly fixed on the food at Bocca Di Lupo all night, I thought it only fair to mix in some actual event photography from the Uniqueness dinner, luckily somebody is keeping their eye on the prize. The dinner, hosted by Alessandra Facchinetti and Caroline Issa, was super fun and relaxed; a rare chance to meet so many amazing people face to face. I’d never been to Bocca Di Lupo before, but the food was delicious! I can see why everyone loves it, the food was simple and delicate; classic italian cuisine, my favourite being the Crudita di Mare, incredible raw prawn and scallop dish. The reason Alessandra had chosen the restaurant is because it was the one place that tasted just like home. The manifesto of Uniqueness is to have fun and live freely, express yourself with colour, print, desire of the moment. There is no seasonal story, the pieces are affordable and available to buy online immediately after they have been shown at Milan fashion week. Pretty brave and ground braking if you ask me. It’s obvious fashion is shifting and I’m looking forward to following Alessandra wherever Uniqueness takes her.
What can you do when you cancel a sailing trip in March due to bad weather and rebook in May, only to have the weather fail you again? Well you do it knowing you can’t trust that’s it’s ever ging to be on your side! Timberland had invited us to go sailing, testing out their new Formentor sailing gear (you’ve never seen me look so good!) We were sailing out the port of Portsmouth in two teams to learn the ropes, swab the decks, man the crows nest etc, the weather was pretty grim and once we’d got out the port we were thrashed from side to side – this could have just been because Laura was behind the wheel, mind you. We learnt how to tack in and out, turning the sail in the wind which was quite difficult; steering was my forté, pretty much like driving a car and when your standing at the center back you don’t feel the waves thrashing you from side to side so much! After two hours on the seas, we settled down for lunch and a much needed glass of wine, before heading out to race the two teams around the harbour. Donna and Graham were naturals at the helm, trying to persuade the team for press trip number two out in Mexico.. I can dream!
To talk about the actual sail-wear, I was impressed by the formentor shoes. They allow water to flow in and out with drainage ports in the bottom. I’m planning to test these out when I get back to Devon, I think they’d be perfect for climbing over the rocks, as I usually fall into a rock pool or two. I’ve just booked a week down there at the start of June so excited for some country air!
100 Abandoned houses was started by Kevin Bauman, he’s been photographing abandoned houses in his hometown of Detroit since the 1990′s. I’ve always found abandoned buildings to be creepy, adventurous and even a little bit depressing, and my curiosity has grown since living next to an abandoned aids hospital in London, which has since been knocked down to build flats. It’s amazing reading Kevin’s profile on Detroit; whilst the ‘rebirth’ of the city is happening in Brush Park, where the entertainment industry is booming, 135 square miles of the city lies largely ignored; people and families attempting to live amongst the abandoned buildings that have largely been taken over by packs of wild dogs or piles of garbage. The images are hauntingly beautiful, like they are screaming out to tell their story. Neighbourhoods that were once wealthy now lay untouched, rotting and peeling until someone puts them to rest.
A couple of weeks ago I attended the London launch of the Jimmy Choo, Choo 24:7 website; it’s an interactive site where you upload your own streetstyle pics, allowing them to be linked and edited by Choo until they are ready for viewers to shop the look.
The beautiful video above is what I really want to talk about. Caroline Issa is the perfect face to represent London for the style makers project, the video with Mr Newton is so chic, I can’t even stand it. I love that she’s wearing all her own clothes, with only the accessories provided. I think a part of me always felt that Jimmy Choo was too feminine for me, they’re weren’t my ultimate go to shoe brand but actually, noticing Caroline wearing them over the last year or so has made me realise that they are totally rock and roll. I fell totally in love with the shoes pictured above, sadly they didn’t make it home with me, but as least I had my little Choo cake to comfort me!
It’s so exciting for me to poke around a busy factory of such an established brand as Tusting; marvelling at all the different machines and jobs to complete one bag, making mental notes of the machine parts that I should be ordering for my studio; it all reassures me that I’m heading in the right direction for my own brand and excitingly, that I’ll have a factory of my own to poke around in one day. Don’t you love that each workspace had it’s own cheesy calendar? Anyway, getting a little off the point, Tusting is the second largest manufacturer in the UK, based in the small town of Bedfordshire, the workers even walk to work from the nearby village! They started their company by importing leather from india in the 1870′s and selling shoe soles to companies like Church’s -which they still do today; now they have been manufacturing bags for over 130 years, giving them a timeless quality and heritage.
They’re even involved with the young British design scene, helping Richard Nicoll design his bags for AW12, with Vodafone. I went to the breakfast launch just under a year ago to hear them talking about ‘an exciting new accessory’ to be debuted on the runway, so it was fun to see it come around full swing. The bags on the runway were all white and have a battery pack in the botton that can charge various devices, a pretty nifty idea in theory.
After we’d seen the factory, we went for lunch in the village pub where Tusting brought along some bags and leathers and we got to choose our own! I’m excited to show you the finished result when it arrives. We also got to discuss manufacturing in the UK and debate why it’s obviously so important for brands to start bringing their factories back. Ella told me that Burberry were planning on returning their factories to England, which would be amazing! Tusting’s largest export is Japan, where they go crazy for traditional Western products therefore they must be made in England; I would think this must fall on Burberry as well; when you sell your brand as heritage I think you subconsciously expect these products to be made in the original country, it’s time we all realised how much this isn’t happening and start bringing our brands back home.
The weather was finally nice enough the other day for me to start wearing some of my SS12 collection, which as you can now see from my tidied side bar, is now available to buy online. Jen’s been in town for the last few days and I’ve been enjoying relaxing in London; going to newly discovered coffee shops, eating cupcakes for breakfast and generally doing things that I don’t usually get to enjoy!
Photos by Jen-wen
Some images I’m finding inspiring for SS13, being frantically pinned on my Pinterest boards. I’m getting excited about starting the new season and have plenty of exciting design ideas coming to mind, with HPR meetings and possible designer collaborations on the headlines; it’s all just a few months away, but for now let’s just look at these relaxing images and think fluffy thoughts. Hope you all had a great weekend!