Saturday, February 25, 2012

LFW A/W '12 Mary Katrantzou

The current darling of fashion, Mary Katrantzou, can do no wrong at the moment. Her collaboration with Topshop launched last week and had grown women running down the escalators of their flagship store in desperation! Not that i'm balking at the idea... i have been known to run (and elbow) for a fashion fix.
(The Mary K Topshop on the dress below...)
So, with expectations riding high, it was great to see her take those signature shapes and push them even further, with new corseted shapes now added to her repertoire. And then there are those awe-inspiring prints. Forks, spoons, typewriters, clocks and embroidered (actual) pencils made up the quirkier combinations, with subtle, yet modern florals, giving a romantic feel to billowing, ruffled dresses. What I love about her prints is that the more you look, the more you see, and the fact that they can take on different forms, depending on whether you view them from a far or up close. A great show - long may the Queen of print reign...

images sourced from the awesome and Topshop websites.

Friday, February 24, 2012

LFW AW'12 Topshop Unique

What i love about the Topshop Unique show is that this high street brand (albeit the leader of the pack) is one of the most hotly anticipated shows of London Fashion Week. And man, did they hit it out of the park this time. Much has been said in the press about the positive influence of Kate Phelan on this years show, which has been praised by all and described as 'Topshop grown up'. It's a real credit to the whole design team that they have produced such a coveted, yet wearable collection. By the second outfit, i knew i was in trouble - i want the whole lot! My heart aches to think it won't launch in stores until September! 

It's also worth noting that this is the 10th Anniversary of the NewGen initiative, which Topshop is a sponsor of. The scheme nurtures up and coming designers and helps them find their feet through Fashion Week, with the likes of Christopher Kane, Richard Nicholl, Louise Goldin and Mark Fast benefiting from this awesome bursary.  Did you pick up one of the celebratory tees?

Friday, February 10, 2012


I fell in love with Aesop products after The Olde Bell came into my life (their gorgeous rooms are stuffed with Aesop products). So stumbling across this gorgeous gesture at their Borough branch last week, really made my day. How seductively savvy!
This then led me to their site, which has the most glorious imagery and the most wonderful voice. The brand has such a great ethos that you will fall in love, even before you sample their products. And wait till you see their stores! Hmmm, i feel another post coming on... 
Check out their A-Z of London, see how many you can tick off...Maybe plan a visit to The Olde Bell...

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Kipferl - my cold weather saviour!

This is proper cold weather food! I have been dying to try this Austrian cafe in Angel for so long and this weeks cold snap gave me the perfect excuse. Although i must say, i will carry on visiting throughout all seasons! As is the trend for London restaurants at the moment, prepare to queue, especially at weekends -  although, you can actually book ahead. Here are some delicious words, in every sense, to get the juices flowing...Sacher Torte, Apfelstrudel, Weiner Schnitzel, Spatzle...hungry yet?

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

The Sampler Wine Merchant and my quest for Vin Jaune

All my plans were thrown out of the window last weekend, thanks to Raymond Blanc. Well, his new TV programme that is. I got so caught up in his delicious description of Vin Jaune , that i made it my mission to hunt a bottle down. And i love a challenge! Now, he also said the combination of Vin Jaune and Comte was (to be said in a French Accent) ''ze must evvenly match on urse. Even a five year old boy would enjoy it''. Any wine and cheese combination that appeals to a five year old boy, MUST be good! I was sold! So after a few strategic phone calls, the man and me finally located the prize at The Sampler Wine Merchant, in Highbury and Islington.  
This place is awesome! There are hundreds of wines to choose from, but the best bit is you can try before you buy! The sample is proportionate to the price of the bottle and with prices starting at 30p, you can really get stuck in! It was actually really nice to try wines that i would never normally go for, especially the expensive ones... 
If you need any extra advice, there are loads of wine related books, to sit and peruse at your pleasure, plus the staff are super friendly and knowledgeable.
The vibe was good too. It was rather amusing to see the place slowly fill up with Arsenal fans, who had obviously just made their way, on a high, from the match that afternoon - a subsequent check on the old iphone revealed they had thrashed Blackburn Rovers 7-1! A much more sophisticated celebration than a pint in the pub...maybe that's how they do it in north London!
 Another plus... i love any establishment that has a resident dog! Say hello to Ivy...

Friday, February 03, 2012

abandoned bread!

Now, The Garrison has its quirks, but i am pretty sure this lonely baguette was not part of the decor...You can just imagine the couple it belongs to saying; 
''Where shall we put our beautiful baguette?''
''I know, why don't we put it on the radiator?!"
''Oh, you're so clever darling! That fits perfectly! But let's not forget it!''
Or something along those lines...

I kept thinking that any minute, a distressed looking couple would come running through the door, crying, ''My Bread, My Bread!'' Alas, no such outburst took place. I wonder how long it took them to notice that they'd left it behind. Begging the question, how far, is too far, to turn back for bread?

I like to think that this Baguette ended up in a good home...

Thursday, February 02, 2012

mighty mouse 2

Now, this hungry little fella had some balls! Let's call him Bryan... 
So there I was, minding my own business, when Bryan practically runs over my foot! And I didn't have to worry about being quick on the shutter, because Bryan here, was perfectly happy to munch away, whilst i practically blinded him with the flash. 
I like to think that everyone/everymouse has a story, so here is Bryan's...Bryan is Northern. He followed his sweetheart (also a mouse) down from Manchester on the Virgin train to Euston. Now, when Tracey got to London, she decided that Bryan was no longer cool enough, so she had an affair with a dirty rat! Poor Bryan was devastated and subsequently turned to binge eating for comfort. Therein lies the story of Bryan, the brave, binge eating mouse. Long may he find food.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

The Garrison Pt2

Bizarrely, whilst writing The Garrison pt1, i started to get the strangest case of deja vu. I could have sworn that i'd never been there before, but after seeing their website and trawling through my photo archive, I came across these...
Upon further brain digging, it transpired that i'd actually been a couple of years ago, for a private function. Either the place looked different back then, or someone put a bag over my head as they led me downstairs... i'll go with the latter. Far more exciting!
The room downstairs can be hired for private functions, but also hosts a Sunday Cinema Club. Imagine filling your belly with scrumptious food, a few cheeky glasses of red, then wandering downstairs to bags a comfy seat and settle in for a good movie. What Sundays are made for!
The Sunday Cinema sessions are every, erm, Sunday, @ 7pm AND it's free to diners!