Saturday, 31 March 2012

Motel Rocks Blogger Party: S/S12

On Thursday night I met up with Francessca, and after a quick early dinner at Lotus Chinese at Westfield, Stratford City we headed over to the Motel Rocks showroom on Great Portland Street for their S/S12 bloggers party; an amazing opportunity to catch up with some of my favourite fellow bloggers, and to check out the current and up and coming Motel collections.
The highlight of my evening did not actually come from Motel, but from the incredible plate of macarons from Enchante Macarons at the Glossybox table. The pink ones were a delicious lychee, the yellow ones white chocolate and the blue, blueberry. They were delicious and I ate so many of them, I think Lily who was manning the table thought it was hilarious that I came back for more every few minutes! 

As for the new Motel collections, I absolutely adore some of the incredible prints they have this season, which is surprising considering I am usually not a prints person. However, I think I would really like to own something in this aztec style print, maybe a body-con skirt? I tried a similar one on in Forever 21 the other weekend, but I did not like how it fit. 
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What do you think of this Hawaiian palm on orange print? I've got something coming from Motel in that design, so be sure to watch this space!
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Nail Rock nail wraps were also at the event, and I was curious to look at both all the incredible designs they have on offer, and to watch the nail artists apply them, and I've had a packet on my desk for absolutely months, and I have not been brave to try them yet! The artist made them look so effortless, but I'm still not too sure I would do a good enough job to try them... 
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Rock 'N' Rose jewellery were also at the event, which I really liked as they are a pretty read jewellery brand with a slightly harder aesthetic than some of the 'pretty' pieces that are available at them moment, that I had never actually heard of before this event. They gifted me a pretty awesome (and lethal, but that is a whole other story) gold ring, which I am pretty enamoured with considering I usually really don't like wearing rings. I'll be sure to include it in one of my up and coming outfit posts! 

What is your favourite piece from the S/S12 Motel Rocks collection? 

Friday, 30 March 2012

Weekly Love: Week 99

Today marks the end of my last week living in London full time. I had my last lecture of the year this morning, and though I have my flat until June and I'll be running backwards and forwards to attend meetings, events, two exams and to see friends, I'm catching the train back to Canterbury and now getting all my post sent to my parents house. I have enjoyed London, but I think I am going to enjoy having my base this Summer in the country a lot more - can you imagine living in London during the Olympics? It would be a total nightmare! 
1. Shooting Easter campaign images for Pilgrims Nook Holiday Cottages. | 2. The truffle 'H' box from Hotel Chocolate my friend Ed gave me for my birthday. | 3. Alix made my Green Pea & Mozzarella Soup for lunch and took this lovely photo of it on Instagram! | 4. Spring themed mini cupcakes from the Primrose Bakery at the Nicole Levy A/W12 Press Day | 5. On Sunday I spent the morning shooting in Hyde Park for Havianas Espadrilles with two of my lovely readers, Laura & Laura! (The latter of the pair wrote this lovely post on the morning!) | 6. Social Media 'Like' & 'Share' M&M's c/o Ebuzzing.

What have you been enjoying this week? (Aside from all of the beautiful sunshine!)

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Press Day, Modus PR A/W 12: Sass & Bide and Rachel Gilbert

I know that with all of this glorious sun and warm weather, the last thing you want to be doing is thinking of the colder weather and clothing appropriate for that weather, as we've only just been able to start showing some skin, but it is A/W12 press day season at the moment, and two of my favourite collections at the Modus PR press day are surprisingly warm weather appropriate!
First, we have a designer I have fallen absolutely head over heels with because of this press day, but before I had seen this collection had not been on my radar at all; Rachel Gilbert.
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Secondly, we have a designer who I have been a fan of for quite a long time; Sass & Bide. I was particularly enamoured by the display of printed and embellished jeans they had on display.
I especially loved these slightly metallic printed jeans. The print reminds me of pine cones, snake skin and of feathers - really unique! I think they'd look great with a soft black leather jacket, plain earth coloured tee and some black cuban leather boots!
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The first thing I noticed at Sass & Bide was this incredible fluorescent orange statement necklace. I have a really thing for fluorescent and statement necklaces at the moment, and I'd love to add this to my post on the best statement necklaces you can get at the moment.

What is your favourite piece I have featured here? What did you prefer, the collection from Rachel Gilbert or Sass & Bide? 

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

An Evening With Motilo & Natasha Zinko

Last night I was treated to champagne, bellinis and delicious canap├ęs care of the online network Motilo in the Natasha Zinko jewellery boutique on Maddox Street (it joins Regents Street and New Bond Street). It was lovely to finally meet and get to know the Motilo team, putting names to faces, and to be able to check out some truly beautiful and unique pieces from a designer that I knew little about. 
Purple is my favourite colour so I felt right at home in the deep purple boutique, decked out in comfy velvet colour block arm chairs, and gearing up for Easter with egg shaped tea lights and big bunches of tulips everywhere.
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I usually feel really unladylike eating loads and loads of the canapes at events like this, but the food was too good not to. The catering was done by Novikov, a new Italian/ Asian restaurant in Mayfair. They have never done catering before, it was a special for this event. I was a particularly a fan of the parma ham wrapped melon chunks, the little bowls of marinated and roasted vegetables with mussels and the little bowls of marinated paella, chilled and served with a perfectly boiled quails egg half.
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One piece of Natasha Zinko jewellery I was already aware of were her now famous bunny rings. Sorry the picture is not very good, but are they not adorable? The bunny motif, as well as that of elephants and sculls ran through a lot of her other pieces.
What I was particularly interested in, however was her pieces featuring skeletons and sculls. I don't know why, but I like my jewellery to have a slightly morbid or creepy streak...
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I thought these suspended skeletons on swings were slightly creepy and rather awesome at the same time. I love the mixture of morbidity and the childhood motif of the swing, these earrings really make me think of mortality. (Yes, I know I started to sound like an art thesis there, I used to study both art and art history - my analysis of things come out rather academic at times, you should see me around the collection of Ancient Greek pottery in The British Museum or the Wilton Diptych in The National Gallery!)
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Monday, 26 March 2012

Revisited: Converse All Stars

I have always had a love/ hate relationship with Converse All Stars. I always loved the way they looked on other peoples feet, and I loved all the different ways people found of wearing their high tops. My best friend has a pair of Sailor Jerry Rum edition ones that he has literally worn to pieces, and everyone has always told me how comfortable they are. More recently, I absolutely loved Jennifer over at Native Fox's post on different ways to wear Converse, and to me they have always seemed one of the more practical summer shoes
I got my first and only pair of Converse All Star low tops a couple of years ago. I did not opt for canvas as is traditional, but these rather wonderful metallic gold leather pair. I wore them a couple of times and they were fine, a little stiff but fine. Then they started giving me the most horrible and horrific blisters every time I wore them out, so they soon ended up discarded at the bottom of my wardrobe.

The other week, I found I had nothing to wear with a slightly summery outfit other than winter boots or Uggs, so I decided to pull them out to give them a second chance. Maybe my feet have changed shape, or got tougher, but they are not giving me nearly as much trouble as they used to and I've been pairing them with quite a few of my Spring outfits since. This is my favourite outfit to wear them with at the moment
converse Turquoise Converse Low Top Trainers: £53, Orange Converse Low To Trainers: £53, Light Purple Converse low Top Trainers: £53, Green Converse Low Top Trainers: £53

What I think really appeals to me about Converse is how many amazing different colours you can buy. I really love these seasonal bright versions, which would look fantastic with the neon and pastel colour blocking trends we are enjoying at the moment! 

Do you own a pair of Converse trainers? What colour are they, and do you prefer hi tops or low tops?

This is a sponsored post. To read my policy on sponsored posts, please click here.

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Places To Eat In London: The Riding House Cafe

On Saturday with my friend Rachel I decided to check out The Riding House Cafe in Fitzrovia for brunch, an all day brasserie just North of Oxford Circus. It had such a lovely theme and atmosphere, and there was so much yummy food we could see coming out the kitchen, I really want to eat there again soon!
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They had a fantastic selection of rather delicious freshly squeezed juices on offer which were a fantastic kick start to the day. I was curious about the yogurt smoothies people were ordering, though, as they were served in milk bottles with a long straw! 
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Rachel had a traditional full English, which I will be heading back to sample, it looked delicious, and she informed me that the bacon was perfectly cooked - it looks it too! 
I had a chorizo hash brown serves with semi sun dried tomatoes, two eggs poached to perfection, mushrooms and dressed spinach. The whole thing was absolutely delicious, though it could have done with more tomatoes and mushrooms, but that is just personal preference as they were both absolutely delicious! 

Have any of you had a meal at The Riding House Cafe? What did you eat? And do you have any more cafe's or restaurants in London you want to add to my stupidly long list of places to eat? 

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Spring Essentials: The Bucket Bag

While I may have recently replaced my handbag, my mother has been needing to replace hers for quite a while now. She was looking for something black, something that could go over her shoulder and something that was small enough not to be weighing her down all the time. It took us a long time, but I finally dragged her into Jaeger where she had not thought of looking a few weeks ago, which is where we found this classic black leather version of one of this seasons must have styles, the bucket bag. 

I love how small and practical it is, how if just fits over the shoulder nicely. I could never have anything like it as I always want a bag big enough to fit my giants of a DSLR camera, but it does not mean that I can't pick something out like it for someone else! If black is really not your thing, this bag also comes in a pretty taupe shade which would look great paired with this seasons pastels or neon brights (though I have found that black goes particularly well with pastel purple). 
My favourite part of the bag has to be the lovely toggle detailing attaching the surprisingly light and delicate chain to the bag - it is going to take a lot of self restraint to stop myself fiddling with these in the car this summer!

Have any of you invested in a new handbag recently? Or is there one in particular you've had your eye on? 

Friday, 23 March 2012

Introducing: Style Compare's 'Fashion Friday' Competition

Earlier in the week, I got an email from the guys over at Style Compare, letting me know about their pretty useful website. Basically, they have loads of different fashion retailers such as Topshop, New Look  and even high end brands such as Mulberry and Twenty8Twelve all one one site, which makes is really easy to shop without having to look on loads of different websites, and to compare things from different brands side by side.
Acne Suede Aviator Jacket: £1,100, Acne Pink Drape Dress: £240, Anya Hindmarsh Rubber Tote: £295

I particularly love their choice of designer collections. I have been a massive fan of Acne for ages, and I've really been enamoured by their simple but still colourful S/S12 collection. Something from Anya Hindmarsh has been on my wish list for quite a while, and these rubber tote bags look beautiful in the window of their New Bond Street store at the moment!
Ever since going totally gaga over this seasons New York Fashion Week Alice + Olivia presentation I have loved the brand and their simple but playful designs, how fabulous would this purple dress look on? On Wednesday I checked out Aubin & Wills for the first time when I was in Selfridges and I love their 'slightly more sophisticated than Jack Wills' aesthetic. 

The email from Style Compare also let me know about their 'Fashion Friday' competitions on their Facebook page where every week they offer their Facebook fans the chance to win some pretty great prizes. This week, they're offering £100 towards the purchase of any blazer on their site. All you have to do is head over to the page and state if you prefer polka dots or stripes (as a general preference, not for a blazer!) Here is some of the blazers I would consider if I won... 

Have any of you used Style Compare before? Do you prefer it to the usual online shopping experience?

This is a sponsored post. To read my policy on sponsored posts, please click here.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Outfit Post: Birthday Girl

Yesterday I had an absolutely lovely day celebrating my 19th Birthday. After a morning wakeup Skype with my parents and phone calls with the rest of my family, I spent the day shopping (okay, so I migh have had a blogaholic slip and swung by a press day too!) and indulging in some of my favourite foods (Mussels and Pinkberry mostly!) before meeting up with some of my favourite blogger, uni and school friends for dinner at The Diner followed by cocktails and cabaret at Circus in Covent Garden. 
Sunglasses: c/o Polaroid, Jacket: Vintage Levi's c/o Shoparazi, Necklace: Forever 21, Tee Shirt: Forever 21, Asymmetric Skirt: Forever 21, Bag: Hobbs, Shoes: Pedro Miralles c/o Spartoo

It was the first outing for my Forever 21 statement necklace I purchased after featuring it in my 'Spring Essentials' statement necklaces post, and incidentally most of my outfit was from Forever 21 which is quickly becoming my favourite low end high street store for things like the basics. The green tee is actually asymmetric so I can't wait to wear it with jeans, and I got the skirt during my morning shopping trip. Asymmetric has never really been my thing, but I'm totally in love with this one now, and it looked great with heels - thanks to Sasha for sending me a tweet to say how nice the skirt/ shoe combo looked when she spotted me in Monki - in future, if any of you guys see me in public, don't be shy and come say hi! 

This big woven bracelet was another birthday morning Forever 21 purchase, though I had had my eye on it for quite a while as it is quite perfect for summer! I paired it with my dress watch which was a birthday present from my grandparents this time last year, and my brand new Thomas Sabo elastic bracelet which was a birthday present from my parents, and I'm going to do a proper post about soon! 

Thanks to my family, my friends and all my wonderful readers with your really sweet birthday tweets and messages for giving me such a fantastic day! 

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Outfit Post: Made In San Francisco

This is the chilled out look I threw on in the half hour turnaround on Monday between my arriving back in London from a weekend in Canterbury, and heading off to Shorditch to meet Sherin and check out the new Volcom store at Boxpark (which is a pretty awesome destination by the way, if you have not been there already, you should really head over and check it out!) 
Sunglasses: c/o Polaroid, Jacket: Vintage Levi's c/o Shoparazzi, Bag: Hobbs, Tee Shirt: Hard Rock Cafe San Francisco, Skirt: Pins & Needles

I actually planned this outfit while I was on the train, where I decided to call this post 'Made In San Francisco' both because it really reminded me of the incredible city I was visiting this time last year and where I picked up this Tee on the end of Pier 39, and because this absolutely wonderful faded vintage denim jacket I picked up in Blitz Vintage Department Store last week is by Levi; brand wise you can't get more San Fran than that - here is to the summer! 

I know this is a pretty old song, but since seeing Train perform it on the most recent episode of 90210 I have been reminded how much I love it, and now I seem to be hearing it everywhere - it really gets me in the mood for Summer and sunshine!

Are there any cities you like to draw your style inspiration from?

Monday, 19 March 2012

Volcom x Boxpark: A First-Timer Guide To Visiting The Store

Do you remember my feature a few weeks ago on Californian DJ Duo Posso's collaboration with awesome Californian lifestyle and clothing brand Volcom? After I'd checked out the collection I headed off to visit Volcom's Covent Garden Store in the Seven Dials, and while I was there I heard that they were opening a new store local to me in Shorditch's Boxpark.
Now, even though it is really close to my flat, I'd never been to Boxpark at all, and before I'd Googled it I had no idea about the concept. Basically Boxpark is a series of shipping containers stacked up for five years outside Shorditch High Street overground station each containing pop up shops. How awesome is that? 
The new Volcom store is in box no. 13, head along the side of the container tower at street level to find it.
As each store has to fit into a shipping container, they are all pretty small, so I love the way the mirror down one side of the Volcom store makes it feel so much bigger than it really is. The wood panelling really reminds me of the ski lodge at Sierra in Lake Tahoe - it look me back to watching the world champion snowboarders filming in the snow park under me as I went up in the ski lift last Easter.  
Before you really start to explore the store, you really need to just stop for a moment and look up at the ceiling. Now, I really, really wish I was one of the artists who worked on this thing because it is just simply incredible. 
Next, observe the mens jeans to your left, and wish that all denim stores were helpful enough to display all of their jeans like this. 
I'm thinking of the beach here, an excuse to wear one of these pretty rad mens tee shirts with flip flops and sunglasses over your bikini? 
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After looking enviously at the menswear, it is time to move onto the womans collections (as well as the Volcom core collection,  they have quite a few pieces from the Posso collaboration in store), but not before taking a moment to check out the sound quality on the Posso x Volcom earphones! 
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If you're not feeling it already, the best way to ensure that you leave the store feeling totally inspired is to check out the great inspiration board on one of the back walls. It is too late to get a flight out to Coachella, right? 
Finally, take a moment to observe how awesome the shop mannequin in the womanswear section is. Usually in stores you'll see white mannequins, black mannequins or even pink ones. Only Volcom is awesome enough to have Volcom print shop mannequins! 

If you live in London and you've never been to Boxpark or to a Volcom store, I urge you to grab a friend and head over. Once you're done shopping, on the top deck you can treat yourself to anything from frozen yogurt to Mexican food and sit out on the deck in the sun!