Thursday, 18 December 2014

Must Have. The 2014 Gift List

It’s that time of year again, so in the spirit of the season I thought I’d put together a 2014 Gift List of all the things I’m coveting this year… and more importantly, wish I had the money to buy myself! As you can probably see, my frequent browsing trips to Harrods have significantly upped the price tag of all my wishful delights. Never matter, a girl can dream. Feast your eyes…

Prada Wallet £373 - the perfect timeless leather wallet

Celine Tote Bag £2,268 - you guessed it; the perfect timeless tote to match the wallet

Alaia Tailored Crepe Wool Coat £2,750 - an achingly chic coat

Marc Jacobs iPhone Case £30 - an iconic phone case that looks like something from outer-space

Jimmy Choo Heels £575 - I choo-se these! Yes please!

Bobbi Brown Brush Set £145 - for the perfect air-brushed make-up

Now, to find that millionaire boyfriend.......

Photos via retailers.

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Must Have. Winter Hats

A funny thing happened in London this past week. Where there was once a sea of heads in the crowd, this has now been replaced by a sea of beanies, fedoras and baker boy caps. It's official, winter has arrived. How do I know? Because it has definitely become 'hat season'. For me despite my chapped cheeks and frozen fingers I'm rather thrilled because I've always loved a good hat - not to blow my own trumpet but I seem to have been blessed with a face shape that suits them - hooray! Time to hit the stores because here are my favourites...

The Fedora
Ah the go-to chic fedora that has overtaken every girl's wardrobe in the last year. This modern style does urban-cool with ease and has become the token accessory of bloggers, stylists and fashionistas everywhere. Why? Because it just looks so good!

The Russian Fur Hat
Add a little international flair to your collection with this iconic style. Definitely one for a European winter, I can just see myself strolling through Red Square with bright red lipstick and matching talons.

The French Beret
Forget those awful bobble beanies and go for real style with a classic French beret. My grandma had a beautiful collection and I like to think I got my love of the style from her. Simply position on a slightly tilted angle and do hair in a low-side-chignon. Parfait!

The Wide Brim Floppy [I-can't-see-anything-under-here] Hat
You know what I'm talking about... the hat that is oh so stylish but requires you to turn your head at very dramatic angles in order to see anything. This style of hat is simply a necessity for your wardrobe; perfect for chilly but still days (wind is a problem with this bad boy) and for occasions when you want to ignore people.

The Wool Cloche Hat
Take a trip back to the 1920's with this classic style. Ever so chic and feminine, this is definitely one for Sunday strolls or brunch with the girls. Old world charm at its best.

Photos via retailers.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Suitcase. Bruges, Belgium - Travel Guide

When I heard about the magic little medieval town of Bruges in Belgium I knew I simply had to visit. THEN when I heard it was host to one of the best Christmas markets in Europe I knew I simply had to visit ASAP! So with Christmas in the air and a cheerful spirit all around my friend and I headed off to Bruges on our adventure last weekend. If you hadn’t noticed already, we really do love Christmas and fondly refer to ourselves as little Christmas elves because we just adore the festive season.

Bruges, to me, is like something out of a picture book. The architecture is so distinctive with its iconic stepped shapes; there is history simply pouring out of every structure in this town. The cobblestoned paths and uneven walkways hint to times long before even my great-great-great-grandparents could remember and castle-like structures loom over the edges of the many canals to create a breath-taking sight.

There are a great many things to enjoy in this place and if you do visit at Christmas time the markets should certainly be number one on your list. They have a range of decorations, knick-knacks and food and drink stalls set up, along with festive carols and an ice-skating rink all set in a forecourt overlooked by the medieval Belfry bell-tower which chimes out relentlessly on the hour.

Take a stroll down one of the many winding roads and you’ll find an array of beautiful stores, or stop in at a cafĂ© for a soul-warming hot chocolate. The main cathedral Basiliek van het Heilig Bloed is also worth a peek inside for a dose of serenity. And what seemed beautiful by day becomes magic at night – when the lights come on the charm of Bruges is evident everywhere.

This is definitely a town for walking. Honestly there is no need for transport within Bruges. Everything is within a short distance and the cobblestoned paths provide the perfect location for wandering. We just walked around with no purpose, getting lost and stumbled across so many beautiful and wonderful things. If you fancy taking to the water, there are various boat trips that run through Bruges’ canals, or you can take in the sights on land in a horse and carriage.

I’ll make it easy for you: frites, waffles and chocolate. That’s it. If you’re in Bruges then you’re eating these three things! A chocolaterie sits on literally every corner – in fact I’d go so far to say that every third shop will be filled with sweets. Once you’ve had your fill of these delights you can find yourself a waffle shop. I had the best ones of my life at Chez Albert, honestly these were so so good. Then if you’ve got space later you must try some of Bruges’ special frites (fries) which are made with a special type of flour. Unfortunately we got our frites from the wrong shop (stay away from the Friterie on Market Square) but I heard Best Frites do them very well.

Looking back on my weekend, I felt like we spent two days in a Disney novel. This little place is not like anywhere I’ve been and its true character is something I’m sure to remember for a long time.

Photos by Krissie.

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Must Have. Beat the chap: my top five lip balms

As much as I’m loving London’s winter festivities at the moment, my lips are really suffering from all the arctic air! So much so that I took myself off to the store last week and stocked up on a basket full of balms (I’m serious I went wayyyy overboard). With one in every handbag, at my bedside and on my desk, I am now an aficionado on those that actually work to give you a baby-skin-soft pout. Here’s my top picks…

Vaseline Lip Therapy Cocoa Butter 
Good old Vaseline, you can always rely on them and now they've upped the ante and brought out a new delicious smelling lip tin. You can't go wrong with cocoa butter.

Paul & Joe Lip Treatment
Tell me anything is Parisian and I'll most likely love it, there's just something about that word! This balm is full of uber moisture perfect for those extra icy days.

Burts Bees Tinted Lip Balm
Since my mum first got me this a few years ago it has remained a favourite of mine: smells good, adds a sheen of colour and locks in moisture. Tick, tick, tick.

Nivea Lip Butter Tin Raspberry
I have long been an advocate of Nivea body moisturiser and this lip butter gets my seal of approval too. Plus I'm loving the raspberry scent!

Pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm
I mean straight away what do you think of? Fairies and the like? Me too! The packaging is cute, the shade is sweet and the moisture is packed in.

With my handbag well-stocked, I’m ready for any potential suitors (*blows kiss*) and the bonus is I smell like a rainbow!

Photos via product brands.

Thursday, 4 December 2014

One Day. Somerset House Ice-Skating

It may only be early December but I have enough Christmas spirit already for everyone - even those of you self-proclaimed grinchs. Last week, on November 26th to be exact, I gave a contented sigh as I realised I had finished all my Christmas shopping and wrapped all the presents. Told you I was keen beans!

My Christmas cheer has only been increased this week with a delightful visit to Somerset House for ice-skating. We arrived in Christmas jumpers and all, ready to enjoy the occasion under the stars. This place just sparkled with all the Christmas festiveness you could hope for - there were cobblestoned pathways, a brightly lit rink and a giant Christmas tree that induced a reflex "oooh" as soon as you saw its twinkling lights.

After an aromatic mulled wine it was time to take to the ice. Skates were donned with a retro playlist to get us in the mood; the mix was Ed Sheeran, ABBA and of course YMCA had to be thrown in. We carved up the rink with absolute elegance and skill including elaborate twists and turns, while those around us clung to the railings... Actually maybe that was us, I can't remember which was the accurate version but who cares! We had a ball.

And as the night ended we took one last stroll of the square, watched the skaters hang up their boots and wished in vain we could reach up to pinch a decoration from the giant tree to take home.

Photos by Krissie.

Sunday, 30 November 2014

Style It. Ways to Wear White

This year, Vogue magazine came out with a nifty little series of clips called "73 Questions" - basically the premise is that a cameraman meets up with a different celeb each week and asks them 73 weird and wacky questions about their life. Of course it's all staged and rehearsed, but it is very entertaining with its rapid-fire style, plus there have been some insightful answers. Some of my favourites were Blake Lively who you see clearly loves to cook and Reese Witherspoon who showed she can do a nifty back-flip on a trampoline.

Anna Wintour herself was interviewed and when asked what's one thing you would never wear, she answered "Head to toe black". My heart sunk when she said it because I will readily admit that I wear a lot of black, and on the rare occasion, dare I say, I wear the shade head to toe. So now that I've been informed it's a cardinal fashion sin [I must say I do disagree] I thought I better come up with an alternative. Here's four stylish ways to wear head to toe white...

The white tux - Your new favourite dress isn't a dress, it's a chic tux set and white makes it all the more stylish. The perfect blend of masculine and feminine style, just beware of anyone holding a glass of red wine.

The casual chic - Ah the effortlessly undone look (that actually requires a fair bit of styling). You can't go past an oversized white shirt for weekend style. Set off your accents with some gold jewels and you're set for coffee to cocktails.

The cocktail dress - We all know and love the LBD but I think it's time we say hello to the LWD. Super stylish and sassy this is sure to work for day or night occasions.

The boho flair - Or give your look a boho twist with a gypsy-inspired top and an ever-faithful white jean. Of course a whimsical plait and some sun-kissed skin complete the look.

Photos via Pinterest.

Thursday, 27 November 2014

One Day. Cliche expat questions [& things I secretly miss]

Since I've been living here in London there are two questions that people ask me - all. the. time. Both of which I'm rather sick of answering so I've started to give weird and wacky responses just to give myself a laugh. For those of you wondering what the questions are, here are the repetitive pondering's of every stranger I meet... "Why did you move here to London?" And "do you miss home?"

Truthfully the answer to the first question is a little lengthy but essentially it's along the lines of "I always wanted to live overseas, there's more career opportunity here and I love big cities." The answer to the second question is a lot more succinct: "no".

My home town; the Gold Coast

That's the long and short truth of it, but the horrified looks that people give me when I tell them I don't miss home is beginning to make me feel like I'm a bad person. It's not that I don't miss my family and friends but right now I simply have no desire to go back to Australia. I know that when I do return everything will be just as I left it - that's what always happens in home-towns. But since it's just you there reader and you promise not to tell anyone, I suppose there are a couple of things I miss...

  • Having a car. Not so much for the purposes of driving around but so that I have somewhere to sing as loudly as I like. I used to get such satisfaction from playing Adele and belting out Chasing Pavements knowing no one could hear me. If I were to attempt that on my tube commute I think I might end up being escorted to the looney bin.
  • My piano. I hope I've still got my skills next time I find somewhere to play. I may need to pose as a music student and sneak into a college.
  • Australian biscuits. Would you believe that the UK, renowned land of "tea and a biscuit", actually has  a pretty terrible selection - what I wouldn't give for a Mint Slice.
  • Moisture-rich skin. I don't know if it's the cold weather, the hard water or the lethal combination of both, but my skin is dryer than the Sahara. I've got to the stage where I'm drowning myself in baby oil and still not getting anywhere... Help.
  • Searing hot sunshine and the beach. Need I say more?
  • Australian prices. What I wouldn't give to go back to paying $14 for a cocktail. I used to think that was expensive but I know better now when a London vodka lime soda costs me £13, i.e., $24. Ouch.
Photo via Pinterest.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Must Have. Delicate & Dainty - TIMI Accessories

I may be bold and brash on the rare occasion, but for the most part I think I'm definitely a delicate and dainty girl - a taste for the finer things, feminine style and a kind spirit all come with the territory. How we dress most certainly reflects our personality and I for one think I am a true representation; fashion wise - what you see is what you get. For me this equals creamy palettes, flowing shapes, high heels and delicate jewels.

Living here in Europe has really complimented my style - there are so many different brands here to cater to your look. Honestly the choices are endless [don't tell anyone but is it sacrilege to say I think there's too many!?]. That's why when I come across one I truly like I get a warm fuzzy [stylish] feeling. Meet my latest style crush - TIMI Accessories. Say hello to delicate jewels, whimsical designs and the integration of one of my true loves - animals. I'm in raptures over these two little neck pieces - perfect for autumn style.

The squirrel is in the acorn - isn't that the cutest thing? You'll find me squirrelling away in the London autumn leaves.

This was a sponsored post courtesy of TIMI Accessories.

Photos by Krissie.