Thursday, 31 December 2009

Happy New Year

I can't believe I have spent the last day of 2009 going through my hosiery drawer in order to organise it, ready for my 'back to work' countdown. I found tights older than my oldest child (she is 3) and even dare I mention it my marriage (coming up to 8 years!). I have taken all the snagged, holey and plain unwearable tights out and filled the drawers with a selection of new stuff by Wolford, Falke and Aristoc. It is always a false economy to buy cheap tights (M&S has let me down too many times) - which is why I have had so much lurking in the drawers. The expensive stuff really does last a long time. I braved the horrors that is Croydon Centrale and nipped into House of Fraser to do a quick one stop shop for the essentials. I even on the way out bagged a pair of black wool tailored shorts, by Esprite marked down to 20 quid, to add to my capsule working wardrobe. This morning my lovely package from My Wardrobe  arrived - with my By Zoe jacket and BCBG pencil skirt. When I get a moment I will post up the different looks for the office I am hoping to achieve every day.

Monday, 28 December 2009

Capsule Wardrobe

I am back in the office mid January and needed a capsule wardrobe for that 'no hassle getting dressed in the morning vibe'. I have to admit it was really hard to do. But I have edited all the basics in my current wardrobe (cashmere sweaters, white shirts, kitten heels and bold jewelry) and filled in with some newer pieces to keep on trend and see me through Spring/Summer 2010. My body shape has changed a lot since having 3 babies. It keeps shrinking, I used to be a 10 but now more a 6 and don't get me started on Banana Republic as their size 0 is too big for me!

I snapped up the last jacket By Zoe My Wardrobe plus a black pencil skirt by BCBG which was only #58. Other basics I purchased were a pair of black flannel crop trousers from Kew. Plus a t-shirt top from Oasis to inject a bit of humor and fun into the office since I work for a media company.

But my eye keeps getting drawn to the Mongolian Stole by Vanessa Bruno currently for sale on The Outnet. Its so fab looking and a perfect cover up for an evening dress - not that I would wear a gown into the office. Maybe it would be OK for New Years Eve jolly celebrations? But when would I wear it again? Arghhhh so unfair I really want it!

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Pudding time

I have never been much of a fan of Christmas pudding, the time it takes to make it, the serving up, the potential fire hazard (I used to be the office fire warden). So this year we will be having bread and butter pudding - made by dear old sis following a tried and trusted Gary Rhodes recipe. My brother is hosting the dinner this year, but we are all contributing a dish or two as he had never attempted to cook for so many people. I am doing the roast potatoes, cooked in goose fat, as well as glazed carrots.

Last year we hosted the dinner, I had just found out I was pregnant with twins and was already HUGE and panicking about how we would cope. D cooked the actual meal while I fretted. My sister was 4 weeks away from her due date and her older daughter gave everyone the flu! This year is going to be a massive celebration as my parents will be there with all seven grandchildren round the table.

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Christmas tipple

This Christmas, our tipple is going to be 'Snowballs' - take one shot of advocaat, one shot of fresh lime juice and pour into a decorative glass. Top with lemonade, it will fizz up, so remember to leave some space at the top.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

Duvet Day

Its been snowing in these parts - a bit crazy with only one week before Xmas day. The duvet hogger is getting worse and I am suffering a frozen shoulder. What we need is a new king size duvet. Preferable made with Hungarian goose feathers. I don't recall why its meant to be the best stuffing for a duvet but I need one pronto.
Looking around prices varies but good old John Lewis has the goods.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Cuppa tea?

This top could have been made for me - its by Sophie Hulme for ASOS , what's not to like? a cashmere mix sweater with a sequin teapot design. Would look great with a black pencil skirt for the office but paired with some wet look leggins for evening.

Christmas Party Invite

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

a piece of Audrey

On the 8th Dec there is the most amazing auction happening and I am breathless with excitement. A chance to bid and own something worn by Audrey Hepburn. Kerry Taylor Auctions have the most amazing selection of goodies and I can't decide which one I really really want - OK I admit I have no funds and its not realistic of me to even put in a bid but I can dream! I just love the black dress she wore in How to Steal a Million. Also there is a wedding dress she had planned to wear for a marriage that was called off - there is a lovely story attached to it which I have copied from the website.

The ivory satin bridal gown designed for Audrey Hepburn by the Fontana Sisters for her marriage to James (later Lord) Hanson in 1952 which did not take place, un-labelled, of heavy ivory satin, with wide boat neckline, pleats of fabric to the bodice front converging on a bow at the waist, three quarter length sleeves, zip fastened to the back with trained skirt, bust 92cm, 36in, waist 66cm, 26in; together with a letter of provenance from Amabile Altobella; a quantity of press cuttings relating to the gown; and a photograph of Audrey at a Fontana fitting wearing the original gown, (qty) The Fontana sisters were renowned for their highly romantic ball gowns and bridal gowns. The sisters Zoe, Micol and Giovanna founded their business in Rome in 1944. They counted among their clientele many celebrities including Audrey Hepburn, Ava Gardner, Elizabeth Taylor, Princess Grace of Monaco and Jackie Kennedy. In 1952, whilst Audrey Hepburn was filming `Roman Holiday' with Gregory Peck in Rome, she approached the Fontana sisters to ask them to make her bridal gown. Signora Micol Fontana said that the 23 year old Hepburn was 'young, fresh, on top of the world'. She used to slip away from the set to take refuge in the sewing rooms and discuss the dress. `Audrey wanted complete discretion and had lots of fittings'. Some weeks later when Audrey called off the planned wedding to James Hanson she asked the eldest of the sisters - Zoe to give the dress away. `I want my dress to be worn by another girl for her wedding, perhaps someone who couldn't ever afford a dress like mine, the most beautiful, poor Italian girl you can find.' Zoe's search centred on the town of Latina which had been founded by the fascists in 1932. The dress was given to a poverty stricken young Italian girl called Amabile Altobella, which coincidentally was the same Christian name as the Fontana sister's mother. Amabile visited Rome just once to have the dress adapted by the Fontana sisters for her to wear at her own wedding to farm worker Adelino Solda with whom she remained happily married, producing three daughters and five grandchildren. Amabile said `I have had a happy marriage, so the dress brought me luck'. The town council gave the young couple kitchen furniture and even organised a honeymoon for them in Paris. After the event she carefully wrapped the dress in tissue paper and stored it away without disturbing it for decades. It was not until 2002 when Micol Fontana, the last survivor of the three sisters traced the gown for a retrospective exhibition of their work, that it was re-discovered.

Just in time for the festive season

Courtesy of Daily Candy 
Merry Sample Sales
December Sample Sales

london sample sales!
sHOp, sHOp, sHOp.
What: Meli MeloPenelope Chilvers and Legge & Braine
Why: Clothing, accessories, boots and jewellery from £5.
When: Today, 9 a.m.-7 p.m.
Where: 60 Portland Rd., W11 4LQ. Map It
What: Twenty8Twelve
Why: Clothing and accessories for women from £10.
When: Today & Thurs., noon-7 p.m.
Where: Garfield House, 86-88 Edgware Rd., 1st flr., W2 2EA. Map It
What: American RetroZoe Tee’s and My Lovely Jean
Why: Up to 90 per cent off ready-to-wear and jeans.
When: Today & Thurs., noon-8 p.m.; Fri., noon-7 p.m.; Sat., noon-5 p.m.
Where: 87 Wardour St., 3rd flr., W1F OUA.

What: Alexander McQueen
Why: Up to 90 per cent off ready-to-wear and accessories.
When: Thurs., noon-8 p.m.; Fri., 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Where: The Westminster Room, The Old Sessions House, 22 Clerkenwell Green, EC1R ONA. Map It
What: Bodyamr
Why: Eveningwear, separates and accessories from £15.
When: Thurs. & Fri., 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sat., 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Where: 7 Coptic St., WC1A 1NH (020 7691 2085). Map It
What: Nicholas Kirkwood
Why: Up to 80 per cent off shoes.
When: Fri., noon-7 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
Where: Swarovski Crystallized Lounge, 24 Great Marlborough St., W1F 7HU. Map It
What: La Perla
Why: Up to 75 per cent off lingerie, beachwear, outerwear, hosiery and fragrances.
When: 7-8 Dec. Mon. & Tues., 10 a.m.-6:30 p.m.
Where: Hornvale Ltd., 22 Newman St., 4th flr., W1T 1PH (020 7291 0930). Map It
What: Graeme Black
Why: Up to 70 per cent off ready-to-wear.
When: 7-11 Dec. Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-7:30 p.m.
Where: 151a Sydney St., SW3 6NT (020 7565 0066). Map It
What: Nicholas King and Tooshie
Why: Jewellery from £25 and swimwear.
When: 10 Dec. Thurs., 4-9 p.m.
Where: 3 Tite St., SW3 4JU.
What: Orla Kiely
Why: Clothing and accessories for women starting at £5.
When: 10-13 Dec. Thurs. & Fri., 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sat., 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Where: Shop 14, Old Truman Brewery, 15 Hanbury St., E1 6QR. Map It
What: Temperley
Why: Up to 60 per cent off ready-to-wear and accessories.
When: 16 Dec. Wed., 8 a.m.-6 p.m.
Where: 20th Century Theatre, 291 Westbourne Gr., W11 2QA (020 7229 7957). Map It

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Party outfits


I was horrified during a recent dinner conversation, the lengths people went to, to nab the Stella McCartney children's collection for Gap. I admit the collection is super cute but I fundamentally object to paying £80 quid for an item of clothing that a child will grow out of it in a nano second or wreck it on its first outing. And this person bought two of them - one for her precious to wear now and one in the next size up!!! I would much rather have spent the money of this lovely Paul and Joe jacket from Stylebop. OK slightly more expensive but hey its an investment piece, which would get a lot of wear.

Now my own curly haired beauty has very strong opinions on what she wants to wear - currently a lot of pink to the point I had to give up wearing it myself (matching mother and daughter is NOT a good look). When she was a baby I never had to resort to putting on a ridiculous hairband to let people know she was a girl. She was born with a full head of black hair, which turned curly after she became one. We used to get stopped so often by little old ladies to admire her, that I actually signed her up to a modelling agency. She has earn t her keep and can be seen in the current Mothercare Christmas campaign. Yep I am proudmum.com here.

Christmas jumper

With crimbo only 24 days away my thoughts turn to what to wear on the actual day. Whilst browsing through ASOS I came across this delightful cosy looking jumper by John Smedley - not really D's style so it would be an ideal 'give to you but pinch off you later' gift....a bit a tinsel in the hair and hey presto I shall look the part on the important day.