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How to Make the Most of a Little Space (Room Tour)

4 Jul

My room is at the top of our 19th Century house. It has a sloping ceiling that mimics the roof, but the room itself is very small. Here are a few tips for making the most out of a small space:

First, set your priorities: how much space do you really need? A bedroom is for sleeping, which is why my ‘room’ is whatever space is left around my bed. I try not to work or write in my room, so its just a place to read, relax and, most importantly, snooze.

Clothes don’t just belong in a wardrobe: If I could change anything about my room, it would be the wardrobe. It’s from Ikea, and its so, so small. Put 3 or 4 coats in there, and there’s no room for hanging dresses. I’ve taking to hanging clothes in and around the wardrobe, and hanging scarves and hats off the mirror and door.

 

You’re going to clutter, so make it organised clutter: I have never understood people who can have nothing but furniture in a room. A place for everything…and all that, but who puts everything away immediately when they’ve finished with it? Crazy. Anyway, I like to artistically place things that I need and things I want to display on surfaces that would otherwise gather dust. N.B. by ‘artistically’, I mean placed at jaunty angles. Like so:

So on top of my bookcase I have a selection of handbags and boxes, and a few knick knacks from my childhood. Its pretty garish, which is why its usually tucked behind my door.

Here on my draws we have another assortment of useless junk: an old lampshade that was too pretty to throw out, some gift boxes, a corsage, bookends and 2 teapots. I have a thing for teapots.

 

 

For the long mantel at the back of the room, I have lined up pretty bags from boutiques and shops, as well as the photo album and box given to me on my 18th birthday.

My piece de resistance is my vanity/dressing table. I keep all my precious things on it – photos tucked into the mirror, and jewellery on the metal tree:These are my favourite pieces. L-R Earrings, Butler and Wilson; Blue Necklace, antique; Elephant Bracelet, antique; Necklace, vintage; Bead Bracelet, Lola Rose.

The Blue necklace was another gift for my 18th; its Victorian and its actually a watch pendant. You have to wind it up, so amazingly it still works.

 

 

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Well I Never!

3 Jul

People are actually reading my blog! I’m totally baffled and I don’t know what to say except….yiipppeee! And if you do stop by, please leave me a comment or message or some sign of life so that I can reciprocate.

Its gone to my head a bit, my 8 blog views, considering its a super secret blog that none of my friends, relatives, or anyone I’ve met knows about. To this end, I have signed up to BlogLovin’. No Judgement.

Another Sunny Day, I Met You Up In The Garden.

3 Jul

-Eeek, cheesy lyric title. Listening to Belle & Sebastian. Its that kind of day-

Today might not be the longest or hottest day of the summer, but its certainly the happiest. The rents are gardening which means I get the whole day without being asked to clean anything (woohoo!) Yesterday I got offered an interview for an internship at a magazine I’m desperate to work for, and in less that a fortnight I’ll be backpacking through Asia.

Our house is pretty neutrally decorated in my mother’s signature understated style. However, she uses our garden and summer house as an outlet for her English-countryside kitsch. The result is pretty breath taking:

 

 

 

Bit of a picture fest, but it just looks so idyllic. I’ve been in the summer house, writing and reading When God was a Rabbit, which is completely worthy of all the hype. It’s really very good.

Outfit of the Day is my usual super casual slobbing around attire –

Shorts – Levi’s Vintage

Tee – H&M which i cut up a bit

Silk Scarf (on head) – Present from my sister

Shoes – Indian market sandals, customised with a bit of dog-chewing.

                                          

 

Winter Blues (and greys and navys)

1 Jul

I’m already excited for winter. I’m always excited for winter except when it is actually winter, and then I seem to be one of the five Brits that isn’t whinging about the cold. So, really quite late after fashion week, I’m looking forward.

I’ve never really cared about oncoming fashion trends, but I love, love, love new beauty releases. Bobbi Brown, whose main line I find unchanging and dull, always release a good palette or two. I will be snapping up this beauty:

(the Sand Palette)

A couple of MAC looks I spotted from the models that I thought were beautiful and wearable:

The Owens look on the left is my preferred for winter. While the Balmain neutrals may be more wearable, and most likely more flattering, but the bare face with the pill box red lip is so wintery and dramatic. I’ll most likely add a strong brow, but keep the eye very pale.

Anyone who knows me knows I have a real penchant for nail varnish. Its all about the quantity and not the quality. Chanel are the ringleaders for new and inventive colours (would anyone have considered painting their nails acid yellow before Spring ’11?) Unfortunately, this years colours are…well, look for yourself:

Petrol spillage chic… Luckily, the eyeshadow counterparts are absolutely beautiful.

 

Fashion forecast prediction for 2011/12: 1940’s and androgyny.

Hurrah!!! Ultra glamour, red lips, huge curls and cinched waists. And on the other end of the spectrum, the tailored trouser, wide collars and sharp tuxedo jackets.

Finally, a word on Galliano. He might be a tremendous prick, but to couple high fashion and ethics is a laughable endeavour. I’m sure I wouldn’t like him as a person, but…

Sigh…

 

Global Style

1 Jul

In two weeks, I venture off to do the Indochina loop – the backpacking route around South East asia that has become deeply trodden in the last decade. Packing has been a nightmare, to say the least. April – August is the monsoon season, which intensifies in the latter month, right slap bang in the middle of our trip. In addition to this,the cultural expectations could not be further from those of my outer London existence.  Modesty is vital. I am travelling with a man who is not my boyfriend, and I have bright red hair. Its probably going to be a nightmare.

On the bright side, I get to shop a lot in preparation. I’m trying to keep clothing to a minimum – I will undoubtably buy truck loads of market finds out there. I’m going for the ‘respectful traveller’ look, modest and neutral. Mikey and I have a month to get around the whole loop, so we’re missing out the student- centred points that require neon and body paint. So far, I’ve pooled the following clothes:

3 tanks and t-shirts, loose fitting and pale

2 pairs of shorts, denim and cotton

2 loose fitting cardigans

1 really sexy rain proof poncho

2 loose skirts

3 jersey dresses (inc 1 maxi)

1 garish beach/ full moon party dress

havianas, espadrilles, trainers

straw sun hat

linen trousers in tan and white

Hareem pants (of course)

various kaftans, bikinis and a pashmina for shoulder covering etc.

Any suggestions from people who have done this sort of trail would be highly appreciated!!!

Where in the World are the Boucles?!?!

25 Jun

I want a boucle jacket, but the universe is against me having one.

Like any epic odyssey, my search for the vintage box jacket is one of many twists and turns.

Episode 1: The Topshop mirage.

So pretty. Those scamps at Toppers didn’t put it in there stores though, except maybe in the flagship, but I’d rather walk through the gates of hell than in there. Anyway, I wanted to try it on, and it annoyed me that they were trying to prevent me from doing that.

Episode 2: Notting Hill Shame

The same day found my ball dress, I found a really awesome vintage emporium. It was June and the 6″7 guy working there was wearing a deerstalker, for one thing. Up on the highest rail (always a bad sign, you fool!) was the most perfect Chanel-esque suit from the 50s. Drool. Deerstalker makes a big show of putting it on me, showing me how well it fits etc, before casually informing me of it £600 price tag. I styled it out though, really cool, shrugging it off me like it was on fire, sweating and mumbling until I got out of there.

Episode 3: Victory?

I love Whistles. I pretend to be all vintage and off the wall but Whistles makes me froth at the mouth. I think it’s its ‘proper big girl’ appeal. I feel like wearing Whistles makes you an adult; that if you wear their nice tailored things, no one will suspect you’re wearing days of the week pants circa 2003.

Anyway, the mother and I were in the South Molten street shop, and they had a cable knit version of the style seen above. A brilliant idea in principle.

But no, Whistles, NO. Bad. Its even making this waif like thing look lumpy (or maybe thats the lipstick). I am rounded at the best of times, but this cardigan made me practically spherical.

Beaten and bruised, I have emerged from this saga angry and deflated.

Then the mother chimes up that I could borrow hers.

Sorry, What?

Oh, and its Chanel. Like actual Chanel, not deerstalker vintage shop imitation Chanel.

Shame its so pink and disgusting really.

More Things that are Pretty…

21 Jun

I’ve fallen in love a bit with vintage wedding dresses. First I wanted to wear one to my University summer ball, but ended up wearing a dress I found at Portobello. It looks exactly like it used to be a wedding dress. Incidentally, it turned up four days later in Grazia:

My Dress [I’m the one on the left, unfortunately, although Fliss (right) definitely had a similar vibe] and Grazia’s high street version next to it :

 

 

I wore the dress with my mum’s lulu guinness ‘lips’ clutch in raspberry pink and my big stompy Kat Maconie booties. They make me feel like i have hooves, but they’re works of art.

Anyway, before I found the above dress at Notting Hill market, I was looking all over for vintage wedding dresses. This one is by We Love to Boogie Vintage (https://marketplace.asos.com/listing/dresses/1950s-wedding-dress/121568). They sell pretty quickly, but they’re great value for what they are. My undoubtable favourite thing about them is that under the ‘condition’ tag they all say “worn once”. Gorgeous.