Uniqlooks August: One item, three looks - Ankle length trousers

Look 1:  Black silk trench coat, CK gift from mum. Leather crop-top old Topshop (bought in vintage store). Trousers, Uniqlo tuck tapered trousers. Shoes, Kurt Geiger Elsie. Mini-clutch, Falabella c/o Stella McCartney
Look 2: Jersey top, Zara. Trousers, Uniqlo tuck tapered trousers. Heels, Pierre Hardy for GAP. Bag, Bottega Veneta. Boyfriend watch, Sekonda. Glasses, YesStyle
Look 3: Cap, I Love Ugly. Silk top, Carin Wester via Heilee. Clutch, Kit’s Marc by Marc Jacobs pouch.  Trousers, Uniqlo tuck tapered trousers. Heels, ASOS Sienna

I would call this mostly ‘Uniqazillian ways to communicate impending toilet run’, but there’s a bit of ‘If I stand upright and look into the camera I WILL DIE  A SHAMED BLOGGERS DEATH‘  in the mix too. In fashion blogging bootcamp I was taught to renounce the habit that my mother so earnestly enforced in my blooming years – stand up straight, look into the camera and show a sliver of teeth – a tactic which usually ensured that the 24 (or 36, if on holiday/birthday party) snaps will be worth its money. For example, the Park family photo albums from 1990 to 2005 is just eyeballs. Then in 2008 I crawled through mud under barbed wire and struggled over walls made out of logs and to learn a new habit that will win us the Blogger badge, namely the ‘I think I need to pee’ pose (pretzel legs), ‘My lover in the sunset horizon’ pose, and ‘Is the the floor flirting with me’ pose – all three of which you can find above. Alternatively it’s a self confidence issue… one will never know. Here we have a pair of dusty pink tuck-tapered ankle-length trousers for the August instalment of Uniqlooks - the material is light and satin-y, which makes it a perfect summer-autumn transition piece for those countries that don’t have permanent PMS for a climate.

Shirt, Blood is the New Black. DIY cropped denim, Zara. Shoes, Isabel Marant Beketts. Sunnies, Jeepers Peepers (similar)

Now that the larger part of the Olympics is over and the sun doing its job properly for once this summer, none of us (i.e England) seem to really know what to complain about. We’re shuffling around the water cooler and downing one too many plastic cups of company water, making small talk over the new carpet and the receptionist’s new clogs. Welcome to CompLane & Co, we were having a fantastic year until the weather cleared up and by some miracle the tourists learnt to stand on the right (edit: of tube escalators). So I am now complaining about wind knocking down a stinky flower vase, which in all honestly was actually quite a lovely gust of wind laced with sweet summer grass that broke the sweltering heat, and the flowers – despite having lost all its petals in transit and having pooped in the vase – was actually a rare luxury in our lifeless flat. I’d love to think these little cycle trips down to Columbia Road flower market is turning into a weekly practice that makes me more of a woman (on paper, at least)… but let me hang up my bra and tell you this, once this sun packs up and goes away to Ibiza (or wherever it retreats usually), I will resume the position Captain-CEO of the unstoppable force that is CompLane & Co, reigning in the confines of my own pizzacrust-lined dungeon. I WILL BE BACK.

 

Azuma Makoto Atelier, Tokyo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No cello-tape, I promise

 

 

 

 

 

Distortion x Flowers

 

 

 

Fish and flowers

 

Wearing: Floral blouse, Zara. Balloon skirt, ASOS. Heels, Alexander Wang via Vestiaire Collective. DIY Cropped black jeans, Zara.

Ice cream and fresh flowers – two things that I would not mind living and breathing for the rest of my life. Did I read somewhere OREO’s do ice cream cookie sandwiches? I’m smearing peanut butter on my body right now, somebody run to the cornerstore. (Are they actually available in the UK?) Speaking of flowers, today a gust of wind passed through our window and knocked down a vase that had a slightly unhappy bunch of – quote, unquote - dahlias (these are what actual dahlias look like, if you’re curious), and it just happened to land square on a pile of fresh-laundered clothes. FRESHLY WASHED CLOTHES MAN. For your information, dahlia vase-water (slight past expiry date) smells of bum piss. I can swear like a truck driver, another thing I learned today. I may have not entirely sworn off flowers for now but I’m never buying pissin’ dahlias again, even ones with petals.

Anyhow, this is one of my favourite bits from the recent trip to Tokyo with Perrier-Jouët - visiting the artist & designer Azuma Makoto‘s atelier in Aoyama and having a go at flower arrangement into the wire-frame used in his collaboration with Perrier-Jouët on the new Belle Époque Florale bottle. MAN that was difficult, kind of like hanging fairy-lights on wire railing, really gimmicky fairy-lights with random green stick bits that don’t coil. Also, I had no idea there were this many types of foliage in floristry? I can probably name one… lettuce… but I don’t think that was available there, no. At least the session really allowed me to appreciate his work more – you must check out his blog, his work is otherworldly. I love the fact that he doesn’t just work with ready-grown flowers but likes to get right into the middle of life cycle challenging growth patterns (such beautiful hybrids) and reinventing synergy of plant and environment. One word, genius.

Wyndham Grand, Chelsea

A dip and a squish at Blue Harbour Spa

Spa buddy Kit

Regaining lost calories at Chelsea Riverside Brasserie

Fruit salad with frozen honey yoghurt

Wearing: Cardigan & Criss-cross sandals, Zara. One-piece python swimsuit, Mona via Bengt. Print skirt, Sarah Pugh via Bengt. Bag, Bottega Veneta. Body rope, Brook & Lyn Surrounded. Watch, GUESS Watches rose gold.

When you live in North East London anything past Covent Garden requires a weekend bag and a passport – and the land of Chelsea is one of the far-far destinations where you might even require to fill out a landing card. To the depths of Chelsea harbour we ventured, Kit and I, around the riverbend, just under an hour (aeon and a bit) on the Overground. (I do realise that if you live in West London then Shoreditch might be your exotic far-east but for some reason I imagine all my readers to be East Londoners with all your swagger.) I generally tend to try to solve needs and wants within my neck of the woods but I just couldn’t turn down a rare spa break opportunity at the Wyndham Grand London Hotel to un-do sailing knots in my shoulder from hours of being hunched over the laptop trying to code a laser beam widget for this blog (“laser“).

To provide a somewhat impartial review, as rare as they might come in this blogging industry, I must confess that I personally wasn’t too smitten with the general atmosphere and service within the hotel. Overall it seemed to lack a certain 2%, or a charm that might have guests curious to poke their heads around different corners, but I do imagine it would serve a more than satisfactory abode for those coming in for business purposes. Yes, I’m aware the fact that I don’t possess any authority to be sitting  on this high pony and saying yay or nay, but going as a twenty-something who appreciates design and likes to travel at lot, it left a lot of boxes unticked. My favourite facility however, and one I do recommend to Londoners and travellers, was the Blue Harbour Spa. The pool is simple and comfortable at 1.5m depth, the steam room is a doozy and the treatments range from skincare to acupuncture, which means if you hail butt from the North East at least you’ll be going back with a de-stressed, smooth butt. I had the De-Stress Muscle massage and definitely felt a ton lighter when I walked out. The spa isn’t super-luxurious, falling just short with details such as plastic cups for water or changing-room decor (I hear people saying who-the-crap-cares), but really you simply get what you pay for. And that’s all that matters at the end of the day, isn’t it.

Many thanks to Alexandra and Natacha of MangoPR for organizing the appointment.
Wyndham Grand London; Chelsea Harbour, SW10 OXG (0800 4458667; www.wyndhamgrandlondon.co.uk)

Sea scallop, oyster, seaweed and watercress

Clockwise: Carrot puree with pickled celery and basil; Mushroom broth with buffalo curd and water mint; lemon sole with smoked marrow and roasted bone sauce

Dessert: Macerated strawberries with Butter milk custard and Strawberry meringue

Silk trench coat, Calvin Klein. Trousers, Topman. Grey t-shirt, Gmarket. Bag, JHYoo. Shoes, Topshop.

Let me just go collect a few more scrap metal bits to sell so I can once again afford to take some more shots inside Roganic to show you. Or, just book and go, actually. I don’t think I’m confident enough to explain what the dishes are anyway, that’s usually Sophie‘s job and I’m the pizza-belly photographer that nods fiercely pretending to know what a hake is. (‘Yes, this hake is so delicious, can one grow it in the garden?‘) The funny thing is, I didn’t near expect Roganic to be this good despite all the gushing, although when I arrived at the address the low-key grey-pistachio exterior with frosted windows did throw me off a bit. When I plan to spend £60+ for a lunch I expect at least a carpet of some variant of red, and servants, bowing. But then again yours truly is cheap-azz that cry over a £6 burger. I went for the 6 course option, only because it’s a no-choice tasting menu which means the 3 course option would’ve been like having glorified finger food for lunch and the 10 course option would’ve been having LOTS AND LOTS of finger food for lunch. If you’re a foodie feel free to leave that dijon mustard-smear in my comment box now. Said glorified finger-food was beautifully presented on surfaces with contrasting or complimenting textures, and served with the most adequate tempo; every course had such harmony within itself – by the time we were on dessert my palate had been active like an LED dance floor. The only time I’ve had that kind of party in my mouth was when I first tried peanut butter and Oreos after watching Parent Trap in 1998…. YUM. Before the company put two and two together and forever ruined adolescent excitement of of food-experimentation, that is.