Sunday, 2 March 2014

ISABELLA BLOW: FASHION GALORE!

I loved the Isabella Blow: Fashion Galore! exhibition at Somerset House so much that I saw the show three times - twice when it opened last autumn and again during last month's London Fashion Week held at the same opulent venue.

Sadly the exhibition closed its doors today and I'm sure if the show had been granted an extended run I would have found my way back to Somerset House again for a final peek...

The reason the show resonated so well with me wasn't just because Isabella Blow (1958 - 2007) was such a colourful and flamboyant figure at fashion shows and associated fashion events for so many years, it was because of her collection of much loved and often well-worn clothes and hats, many complete with cigarette burns, that told such a powerful story of a life lived through clothes.

Isabella Blow, 1997 
© Mario Testino 

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

PREVIEW OF THE AZZA FAHMY FOR MATTHEW WILLIAMSON AW14 JEWELLERY COLLECTION

As London Fashion Week fast approaches, Matthew Williamson and the luxury Egyptian jewellery house, Azza Fahmy, are putting the finishing touches to their second jewellery collaboration. The contemporary jewellery collection will be unveiled at Matthew Williamson's AW14 catwalk show on Sunday evening at the magnificent One Great George Street.

You can read all about the collaboration in my exclusive post for Harper's Bazaar, plus read additional quotes from the designers and see more image below.


The Azza Fahmy for Matthew Williamson AW14
Jewellery Collection mood board


Tuesday, 24 December 2013

VINTAGE CHRISTMAS TREE BROOCHES

It’s Christmas Eve and I’ve just unearthed my vintage diamante Christmas tree brooch, that I reach for every year when I start preparing the feast of all feasts.

Wearing something so beautiful and extravagant always gets me in a Christmas mood and adds a bit of glamour to stuffing the turkey and peeling endless spuds. I forgot to put the brooch on one year and my daughter quickly reminded me, so wearing it has become as much of a festive tradition in our house as assembling my late parents’ 1950’s Christmas lantern and decorating the tree with vintage decs.


Happy Vintage Christmas!
Photo credit

Sunday, 22 December 2013

STRATTON AUDLEY CHRISTMAS BARN

If you're still looking for some last minute gifts, head to the Stratton Audley Christmas Barn for a unique line-up of Christmas presents and a lovely day out in rural Oxfordshire. For today only, there's the added bonus of a festive Beer & Sausage Festival, in aid of Save the Children. Santa will also be there in his Grotto and a traditional Punch & Judy, plus friendly farm animals from Ark Farm.


Festive gifts and homeware


Thursday, 12 September 2013

AZZA FAHMY FOR MATTHEW WILLIAMSON JEWELLERY COLLECTION SS14

Take a look at my post for Harper's Bazaar on the launch of the 10-piece jewellery collection by Azza Fahmy for Matthew Williamson: Harper's Bazaar/Latest

Showcasing at the Matthew Williamson SS14 catwalk show at London Fashion Week on Sunday, The Azza Fahmy for Matthew Williamson Jewellery Collection will be available from Spring 2014 exclusively at the Matthew Williamson flagship store in London and Azza Fahmy boutiques.

The collaboration between the Egyptian luxury jewellery house Azza Fahmy and leading British fashion designer Matthew Williamson highlights the synergy between both brands and their love of global cultural- and travel references.  


The Azza Fahmy for Matthew Williamson SS14 Jewellery Collection moodboard,
highlighting the organcic stack rings and nature-inspired collars

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

WANSTEAD VINTAGE FASHION & BROCANTE FAIR - JULY 2013

I spent a lovely day on Saturday at the Wanstead Vintage Fashion & Brocante Fair. There was a great mix of stallholders selling fashion, beauty products, homeware and artefacts from predominately the 1920's through to the 1960's.  The fair was well worth visiting and I spent too much! It's a treat to find a fair that consistently offers genuine vintage pieces, rather than the usual line-up of retro and crafts that so often masquerade as vintage.

To celebrate the third anniversary of the fair, the organiser Cary Whitley of LoveVintage, had booked Ultrasound, a 50-strong choir specialising the Rockin' 50's to entertain everyone, plus vintage hair and make-up specialists, Candypout, as seen on Kirsty's Vintage Home on Channel 4.

There was a real buzz around the old church hall with many of the regular stallholders offering seasonal finds, such as glamorous cat's eye sunglasses and spectacles, elegant parasols and pressed glass decanters for al fresco dining. Newcomer Graham Leonard's collection of beautiful perfume bottles also proved a huge attraction. He reported selling several vintage fragrance bottles by, amongst others, Chanel, Coty and Worth, plus a rare porcelain Empire Sphinx with 1/4oz Cabriole perfume from the Elizabeth Arden 1979 Palais de Versaille Christmas Collection.

As always the Vintage Cafe was a popular stop-off. It was a real treat to sit outside in the sunshine with friends, sipping tea from a bone china cup and listening to the choir sing...happy days!


Vintage beaded bags and 50's cat's eye frames from LoveVintage


Sunday, 9 June 2013

SUMMER OPEN GARDENS

We enjoyed a beautiful day at the annual Open Gardens event in our village this weekend. It was so lovely to see everyone out and about exploring the fabulous gardens. Cream teas and other refreshments were served in the church and we couldn't have asked for better weather.

It's a village tradition to create scarecrows each year and this time round the theme was well-known characters from children's books. Among the highlights was Harry Potter on his broomstick playing Quidditch and The Tailor of Gloucester, complete with sewing machine and busy little mice.

All in all, a very special village day...


 A village affair: Magnificent Gunnera, triffid-like aeoniums and vintage
troughs, interspersed with storybook scarecrows