Blouse & Bag – Chloe. Skirt – Karen Millen. Bracelet – Miansai. Watch – Larsson & Jennings

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A video diary: the first day of London Fashion Week

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Rewind, play.
A Shopstyle x Harrods video, produced by The Apartment

As you can see, I make a brilliant habit of dropping my cool like a hot potato whenever a camera is shoved in my face. I mean, slow-dancing with food and suggesting a celebrity threesome is, really, any old day in the life of this insane chipmunk, but no one’s ever successfully recorded it so… yes, let’s report this cool lost. (Although, I suppose one can argue that I never had any cool to begin with.)

Weeks before the ‘fashion’ baton was handed over to London, I sat down with team Apartment, Shopstyle, and Harrods, in the plans of animating a typical London Fashion Week day for me. Many a scenario we had mapped out: breakfasts, fittings, shows, re-sees, melt-downs on account of London traffic and even a spot of work (!). But me being me, famously sporting a rather potent gravitational field of tomfoolery, on the actual day of the shoot we ended up rewriting the agenda (on the back of a Pret bag, with old eyeliner found at the bottom of my bag), and indulged all kinds of tangents… like running into the nearest McDonalds to use the loo and coming out with a box of McNuggets. In Balmain. (Shhh don’t tell Harrods) In the end though, I do think it turned out to be a more natural rendition of what a LFW day looks like every season after season: the mad conflict of schedules vs. spontaneity, with snacks and gossip at the Apartment in between it all.

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Jacket – Balmain.

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Jacket – Chloe . Bag – Marni. Stole – ASOS. Trousers – Zara. Shoes – Gianvito Rossi.

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Photos by Kris Atomic, Simon Schmidt and Shini Park. In Collaboration with Shopstyle.

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photography
Samuel Hearn
styling & art direction
Park & Cube
production BENJAMIN DEAMER project coordination BRIAN LEAVY landscape photography WILLIAM DOUGLAS. in collaboration with BARBOUR INTERNATIONAL
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Let’s ignore for a minute that my idea of a perfect getaway is a gamecation. FPS preferably, with fingers coated in tortilla chips straight out of mega-size packets. And guacamole, LOTS of spicy guacamole. Ignore also, the fact that I live in a cabin in the grand INTERNETS, and know the land like the palm of my hands. I tweet by day, herd trolls by night. I own a motorcycle named Netflix and we tour the lands like a renegade, Breaking very, very Bad.

Shield your eyes and mind to all that and imagine, a fantasy excursion. The outrageous idea of going outdoors and smelling the grass, feeling the wind comb through your hair, and hearing the suckling sound your shoes make in the mud. Hop on a gleaming Triumph Bellevue and roar down a dirt path that leads nowhere in particular…

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dress BA&SH hat ZARA (similar) waxed jacket BARBOUR INTERNATIONAL

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above: trousers PULL & BEAR watch DANIEL WELLINGTON scarf ZARA right: shirt ASOS skirt BARBOUR INTERNATIONAL cape GLAMOROUS necklace EFFRA
This is the kind of adventure I wanted to create for Barbour International: collections inspired by free spirit, curiosity for what’s out there, charged with attitude. There’s a bit of glamour in the grit too, when looked closely. I’m very excited to have collaborated with photographer Samuel Hearn on this story, with huge help on the production front from Benjamin Deamer and inspiration from my editorial partner Brian Leavy, the forever adventurist.
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leather jacket BARBOUR INTERNATIONAL crop top ASOS scarf ASOS trousers WHISTLES below: leather jacket BARBOUR INTERNATIONAL dress THREAD & NEEDLE boots ZADIG & VOLTAIRE

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Double,
triple life
Versatility, apparently, is a superpower

Every six months my parents ask me via Whatsapp, “so… what exactly is it that you do now?” And every six months, I struggle to explain what exactly it is that I do now. If they asked this morning, I would add ‘5-minute spaghetti chef’ to the list, alongside photographer, web designer and blogger, and my mother would show me the true spelling of ‘tsk tsk’. (It’s true, I am this close to a Michelin star tyre) There is no doubt that I do lead a bit of a double life, if not triple – just like any ambitious (read: charged with the crazies) individual today. Plus, it comes with the territory when working in the visual industry.

For this reason I don’t have a uniform, there is no one cape that I can wear to all three jobs, unless stained Pyjamas count (thank the heavens for Skype conference calls). Truth is, I rely heavily on versatile, multi-purpose pieces that can minimize the stress of having to face an important client in the morning and then go on a physically demanding photoshoot in the afternoon. On this collaboration with Fay, I thought I’d show you exactly how I live this double, triple life quite comfortably with just one coat called Virginia.*

Don’t forget to check the Double Life feature over at Fay.com with the full scope of the campaign and rest of the Double Life babez.

In collaboration with Fay. Photography – Krisatomic;

Coat – Fay ‘Virginia’.

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I start the morning with a meeting with a client over coffee and breakfast pastries to discuss her branding and a new website. I’ve done up the clasps of the Fay coat up to my neck and belted it at the waist for a more formal look, although by the third pain au chocolat I regret this decision. I do love that it gives an overall military (think cavalry…) vibe, but with a slight feminine twist with the stilettos and red lips.

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I work from a home studio/office so it’s always a big deal when I’m out in town, so I always try to make the most of it by scheduling in at least one visit to an exhibition or gallery. Today I’m gatecrashing at the Dorothy Mead exhibit at Waterhouse & Dodd.
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Back to the office where I swap my 5-inch-heel horse and into more comfortable gear. We’re shooting in the studio today so I’ve slipped on a skirt and a pair of yoga shorts underneath. (No one is seeing my uterus today…) The Fay coat is perfect to throw on for the coffee run, finished off with an oversized scarf.

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Coat – Fay ‘Virginia’. Top – ASOS. Skirt – Carven (via Harvey Nichols). Bag – Saint Laurent. Boots – Stuart Weitzman. Scarf – ZARA

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Is it just me, or late lunch always tastes better? Oh wait, that’s the hunger speaking. Despite the three pain au chocolats and a plate of eggs from this morning of course. Aubaine’s Poulet Paillard is my go-to hunger buster.
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Coat – Fay ‘Virginia’. Top – ASOS. Bag – Hipsters for Sisters. Skirt – Alexandra Grecco. Sneakers – Isabel Marant.
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Given how dark it gets these days, my happy hour is winding down somewhere bright and cheery, so I ask a friend out to meet at the Wallace Collection – one of my favourite places in London – before heading to dinner. It’s been a long day so I pull out something fun and comfortable to wear under the Fay coat, like this puffy tulle skirt and white sneakers. AND A FANNYPACK. I swear it sounded better in my mind…

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* I don’t really change three times a day (unless I spill curry twice a day, which has happened in the past, mind.), this is simply to illustrate the multiple scenarios of styling a coat.
** Apologies if my third-grader handwriting offended anyone’s eyeballs this morning. I blame the rise of the machines…

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Top – ASOS. Jeans – Topshop x Marques’Almeida. Bag – Saint Laurent. Belt – Vintage LV. Necklaces – Monica Vinader.

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Watch – Larsson & Jennings. Key clip – Whistles x Moxham. Rings – Monica Vinader. Case – Casetify. Bag – Saint Laurent ‘Lulu’

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Top – ASOS. Jeans – Topshop x Marques’Almeida. Heels – Tamara Mellon. Bag – Saint Laurent. Belt – Vintage LV. Necklaces – Monica Vinader.

The thing about working from home is that spending the whole day with a crow’s nest for a head, wearing a denim diaper/mum jeans and perpetually smelling of last night’s takeaway is all fine and dandy until the moment there’s a need to step out the house. Suddenly there’s a tremble of confidence when faced with the challenge of having to join civilization: the I know exactly what I’m doing, with, can I use Febreeze as deordrant?, and you’re stumbling out the door with an outfit that is an awkward morph of hobo and put-together. I suppose this may be how the normcore trend came to being – a bunch of freelancers dragging ‘home-shoes’ Birks around the streets of Dalston (or more likely, the narrow corridors of the intranets, seeing as how nobody seems to be able to pinpoint the exact origin) in pursuit of a fresh new pack of post-its or Coconut water and whatnot. Of course, the survival of the fittest theory still seems to apply with said scenario because last time I checked, my 90’s car-thief/soccer mom get-up has yet to be a global trend. Well, until Merriam-Webster gets in touch about using one of these pics to illustrate the word ‘Awkward’ in a new edition of the English dictionary, that is. In which case Tinseltown, here I come.

Blazer – Zara (similar). Culottes – ASOS. Shoes – Gianvito Rossi. Belt – Vintage LV

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Necklace – Amulette de Cartier

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Necklace – Cartier. Top & Trousers – Louis Vuitton Icon. Scarf – Zara. Bag – L.K.Bennett. Shoes – ASOS.

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Necklace – Cartier.

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Above: Hat – Chanel. Sweater - Zadig & Voltaire. Necklace – Cartier. Watch – Larsson & Jennings. Heels – Malone Souliers

There’s an urban myth that flight attendants look for neatly-dressed passengers in Economy to upgrade into Business class in order to balance the weight of the plane when the flight is under-booked. That, of course, is not the reason I wear heels when I travel. I am the passenger that has breadcrumbs all over her chin and sweater before take-off because I genuinely believe that I will starve and die before they bring out the food trolley. I’m also the passenger that is virtually invisible because she’s reaching under the seat for a fallen Skittle.

ANYWAY. I may have briefly touched up on this before, but the more I travel, the more I realise how much I’m addicted to the first 24 hours of a journey: the flurry of packing, pre-flight jitters, and the view out the plane/train window, then finally landing on foreign soil and cataloguing new scents and sounds into memory. From a certain point I started to dress up for it, like I would to any anticipated event, like a good show – figured I’d be sitting for hours in the plane anyway. While I don’t think I’ve yet fully mastered the art, so far these tricks have worked for me: Frothy cashmere, a great pair of heels you can easily slip out from, and single, fuss-free jewellery like the Amulette de Cartier that won’t bring down the entire airport.

In Collaboration with Cartier; photography by KrisAtomic; Location: Booking Office at the Renaissance Hotel.