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Gucci clutch

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Skirt – ASOS. Heels – ASOS. Blouse – Zara. Bracelets – Bouton. Belt – ASOS. Clutch – Gucci

When we’re not sunning ourselves at the glare of our laptop screens, connected merely through an Ethernet cable and gunning down Nazi zombies on co-op multiplayer mode, hubby and I like to think we are pretty normal people. You know, like, wine, dine, and footsie under the table kind of couple. Having been together since highschool, to this day our dates usually involve a bus, the local cinema and cargo pants for maximum pocket-space to smuggle in snacks (our record is 2 massive Dorito’s bags and a bowl of salsa dip). If we reach first place that’s a hot night. But lately, and I’m not sure if it’s all the glittery holiday decorations or the fact that it’s dark before the afternoon is up, we’ve been arranging more dates out in town – eating food that wasn’t delivered by a motorcycle, wearing clothes that aren’t soiled with bits and Kebabs. I won’t lie, it’s exhilarating to experience London in a different light, and to know that by learning to do this we’re living the best of both worlds. One night we’ll burn through the night at home with back-to-back Big Bang Theory seasons and plastic cutlery takeaway dinners, and on another we can sit at a marble-top bar with the glittering liquor bottles and sip wine that’s listed slightly lower on the menu before the 7:30 show. We’re still taking it slow though, occasionally I have to kick his shin if he tries licking his plate clean (our version of footsie for now), and we remind eachother about the discretionary cough when someone belches accidentally. The other night we tried smuggling in popcorn in the Gucci clutch and had to explain that it was a gift and all the popcorn just came with it.

Bar: Les Deux Salons; Theatre: Aldwych Theatre. Photos of outfit thanks to lovely KitGucci x Park & Cube

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Bracelet – Swarovski ‘Interval’

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Coat – Anywho x Brics. Leather trousers – Hoss Intropia. Sneakers – New Balance 574. Bangle- Swarovski ‘Interval’. Rings – ASOS. Bag – Couronne. Cashmere sweater – Boden. Scarf – Acne Canada scarf

Just a quickie before I head out for a day of chores, or as I’d like to say, excuse to drink five hazelnut lattes and stumble home feeling like a cow/squirrel by the end of the day. I’m hoping to finish my Christmas shopping this week so that I’m not forever remembered as that girl that keeps getting into rumbles with desperate middle-aged men in aisle 5 for the last tree-shaped candle. Although, I do usually look forward to February 13th because that rumble is usually for the last heart-shaped chocolate with desperate 20-somethings and seeing how I’m married that’s the most action I get in months. Oh I’m kidding. Sob.

Also, do check out a wee guest post I did for Wink, a blog by Nathalie Colin, the Creative Director of Swarovski, on matching jewellery with belt. Here’s a preview…:

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Look 1: Belt by JinYoo103684, Earrings: Swarovski ‘Tody’
Look 2: Belt – ASOS. Necklace – Swarovski ‘Nice’.
Look 3: Scarf - Acne ‘Canada’. Bangle - Swarovski ‘Interval’. Belt – Next.
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Rings - ASOS. Bracelets – Bouton.

Outfit photos thanks to the help of Ellen!

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Printemps x Prada Christmas windows

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Gwyneth Paltrow, in all her goopyness and stuff.

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Wearing: Coat – Anywho.dk x Brics. Cashmere sweater – Boden. Skirt – Zara. Shoes – Kurt Geiger ‘Stage’. Bag – Couronne. Outfit snaps thanks to Alice & Sabrina.

There’s a day in November when an email drops in my inbox that kick-starts the holiday season, attached, a return ticket to Paris and a promise of good, warm fun inside The Printemps department store. That email is my green light to start thinking about gifts and to dig out decorations from under the staircase, ensued of course by a chicken dance at the prospect of going back to Paris. I know I’ve bashed Paris a little in the past couple of months, but she is still my lover and I love me some glitter. Even better than saucy French maid costumes methinks. This is my third year (year 1, year 2) seeing the curtains come down for their Christmas windows and I have a feeling it’s become a bit of a tradition, and every year I go back after dinner to oogle at the animated windows with a similar fascination as when watching Ryan Gosling GIFs online. Occasionally I’d drool at a particularly glittery bauble, but not as much as when I do for special GIFs involving six packs. This year, Prada decked the chessboard halls with updated classics and limited edition satin pumps, and in the windows, let loose Pradabears to mingle, which I’m sure will stop a lot of children in front of the windows this season, if ye know what I mean*.

Thank you Ykone Printemps for having me!

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Que pasa, Barcelona!

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Arc de Triomf

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White skirt – Mango. Frill bra-let – Topshop. Check shirt – Motel Rocks (similar). Heels – Mango. Pyramid leather cuff – Mango. Rose-gold watch – Guess. Clutch – Kurt Geiger Dino.

This is my seventh year in London and I have a feeling I just may have crossed over to the dark side sometime in the past year or so. The dark side where everything is blown out of proportion, that is, most especially the weather: where basically, anything other than overcast, dull skies is considered a gift from the apocalypse. So now I’ve come to accept that a bit of wind and rain is a HURRICANE, a bit of snow a SNOWSTORM, and hot-dang it’s sunny out, there must be SCORPIONS lurking outside the door. Any reason to cancel work and stay in bed with tea… it’s quite clever actually. I noticed this though, only as I was packing for Barcelona, because it seems I had exaggerated SPAIN in my brain and packed a summer vacation wardrobe. I really should have stuck my arm out the window, i.e Googled, and learnt that autumn in Barcelona is actually a slightly warmer version of autumn in London – definitely not bikini top and straw hat weather. Good thing there were clothes a-plenty at the Mango DIY workshops, because apparently a denim shirt and boyfriend jeans a great pair of long-johns make. Enough about me, Barcelona: what a beauty! While not my first time in Spain, it was my first time in the city and hence the region of Catalonia, and once again despite my exaggerated image of hammocks-and-palm-trees Spain, it was quite the contrary. The Barcelona I found, was a true West-Europa metropolitan city, bustling with professionals shuffling by busily with their heads low, or with tourists that walk with their heads generally fixed on a second floor level, Carrie (travel buddy) and self included in the latter. You won’t believe how many photos of beautiful balconies and building detailing I came home with. The city is rich in architectural history: Gaudi to the famous Gothic quarters (Barri Gòtic), although in our under-researched pride we’d seen very little of either. In fact, we’d spent the afternoon tossing Cheetos’ into eachother’s mouths under the Arc de Triomf, convinced this was the place to be, blissfully ignorant of the hip El Born area around the corner we meant explore. Oh, mañana.

By the by, my Polish friends wag their fingers at my tweets about how I may die of trench-foot because it’s 10 degrees (50°F) out. Yes, I have failed them.

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Hermès Petit h atelier, Paris

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The ‘Ali Baba cave’, full of bits and bobs that were rejected, discontinued or defected.

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Even the tiniest of fault in a Hermès bag would be rejected and sent to Petit h for re-purposing

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Stools with re-purposed scarves and croc leather

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Silk-covered mobile

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Leather pleating detailing on a vase, which is now adapted at other ateliers at Hermès

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The store on Rue de Sèvres

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Studio-shot photos courtesy of Hermès

The little sister that wanders the garden to collect acorns and bright-coloured leaves, and sits at the foot of her mother’s sewing table and picks up scraps – buttons, fabrics, ribbons- to store them all in a special place… that’s Hermès Petit h for you. She makes dolls out of discarded socks and fills them with scrap yarn, carves out the pages of an old book to make a secret box… some of her knick-knacks even have names and stories. Championed by Pascale Mussard, great-great-great-granddaugher of the saddle-maker Thierry Hermès, Petit h was a solution to the materials that were discarded, discontinued, or refused by Grand H – Hermès, which, by policy, would normally be destroyed or burnt without exception, belt buckles to Birkins. Open in 2010, it has since been a treasure cove of flawed materials from all the ateliers, and a laboratory where these materials breathed new life as absolutely unique, one-off pieces. A team of six multi-disciplinary artisans act as treasure-hunters, most well seasoned in the Hermès tradition of impeccable craftsmanship but also a few younger apprentices that Mussard believes can instil fresher takes on design.

Speaking with Pascale Mussard in the Petit h atelier, it’s astonishing, because she is that ‘little sister’. Her face animates as she tells us about her love for collecting and takes us through her life story of growing up in post-war France, being frugal but also creative with the things you have. She recalls fondly how she and her mother would imagine up new recipes using leftovers, or make play costumes with leather scrounged from the ateliers. Even during her years at Hermès she had set aside rooms and rooms to collect paraphernalia: fabrics, leathers… which would eventually evolve into the official archive of Hermes. I’ve never met anyone as passionate, I think. Ultimately, her joy of saving, taking care, and re-inventing/up-cycling would give way for treasures via Petit h. It’s been over a year since I visited the Hermès Atelier Sacs and saw a Constance bag creep into my very grown-up wish-list, but I have a feeling Petit h will be a delight to my inner child for years to come.

Petit h is setting up camp in the Bond Street store starting 20th November through till the 7th December, and let’s just say, as far as Hermès pricing goes, this may be the ideal time to start your collection. The space is being designed in collaboration with Studio Toogood, which also lends a good excuse just to pop by for a good oogle.