A London Life… at London Fashion Week

london-fashion-week-the-apartment-1The Apartment | London Fashion Week SS16

London Fashion Week. Yes, only two weeks ago it was that time of year again. The time when the “fashionistas” dust off their extravagant hats, pop on their wildest outfits and head to the HQ of fashion. Brewer Street car park. Wait, what?! It very well may have been controversial to move from Somerset House to Brewer Street car park, but alas move it did. This season, London saw hives of fashion lovers descend upon Soho. Models, designers and bloggers alike took the area by storm. And it was a little crowded to say the least.

What did I get up to? Well actually I got up to a lot over the weekend. So much so that I plan to do another post on my shenanigans. To sum it up? There was… relaxing; at The Apartment. Which included… pampering; courtesy of Jurlique, and food/cocktails; courtesy of Aubaine, Krispy Kreme and Aperol Spritz. And those are just the brands featured in this post! Yes, we were spoilt rotten. Don’t worry though I worked off most of the sugar glaze and alcohol by running around doing photoshoots and attending shows such as Sadie Clayton‘s (love THAT bomber jacket).

Thank you to The Apartment & Dina Tsesarsky for the photos of me & V.A.

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A London Life… at Bettys Tea Room

bettys-tea-room-yorkshire-tea-party-london-4Bettys Tea Room Blogger Event | A London Life Series

Betty’s tea rooms in Yorkshire are famous worldwide. Their afternoon teas are a luxurious treat that people travel hundreds, even thousands, of miles for. I remember staring in awe at the opulent cafe on my first visit to Harrogate, as a small child. I thought to myself “when I’m an adult, I will have afternoon tea here everyday”. Flash forward quite a few years, I have been unable to keep my promise to mini me. However last weekend my inner child was indulged when Bettys visited London for their first ever blogger event.

I was given the chance to test out of my piping skills, which I thought had improved after the Konditor & Cook event. I was wrong. As my dad put it “your cakes would give children nightmares”. Well, I suppose if I’m gonna excel at something… Anyway, after the piping challenge – which my lovely table buddy Emma deservedly won – we were told to decorate our tables. With boxes of cakes. Yes you heard me correctly. Boxes of cakes! If some of those boxes had also contained puppies I would have assumed I’d died and gone to heaven. My team (me, Emma and Charlotte) grabbed some crockery and accessories, and got to work. It didn’t take us long before we’d created a work of art (check out the photo at the top of the post). We had: Grand Cru Chocolate Sachertorte, Fox Cupcake Brownie, Champagne Truffles, Chocolate Fruit Clusters, Yorkshire Shortbread and tea. If my will power hadn’t been at full capacity on this particular day, I would have easily gained a stone in chocolate weight.

It felt so wonderful to be invited to a Bettys event. As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, the tea rooms are very special to me. Feeling that excitement and energy once again, reminded me of just how much we take some experiences for granted. Sure, I’m not going to win the next series of the Great British Bake Off, nor am I going to get a job at Bettys as head cake decorator (not with those piping skills), but that doesn’t matter. Because just by tasting their cakes, teas and pastries you realise how much love and time have gone in to making them. Whether you’re a child or an adult, Betty’s will make you feel pretty special.

If you ever have the chance, I highly suggest you pay a visit to Bettys.
If you really can’t visit, the magic that is the internet will now allow you to buy their creations online.

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A London Life… on Foot

london-life-bloomzy-architecture-kings-college Southwark | Nearest Tube: London Bridge

Walking is one of the few forms of exercise I can get behind. In fact I walk a lot! London may be big, but it’s pretty easy to walk between tube stops, or around a specific area. Of course it helps when the city you live in is so beautiful. Yes, I genuinely mean that. London is a wonderful mixture of old meets new – history and culture seep from it’s streets. Speaking of, the streets are incredibly inspiring in London, especially for a budding photographer such as myself. I often find myself stopping to take a photo or two. The architecture is like nothing else in Europe. Paris may have it’s charms, but I could walk for hours and only snap shots of London’s buildings.

Of course the people are just as interesting. That’s why whenever I walk I always make sure I have a companion. Lately it’s been V.A. After taking her on a tour of Dalston/Stoke Newington, she returned the favour and showed me around Southwark. It’s very different to my part of town – East. It’s more polished (in parts), but that doesn’t make it any less compelling.

View more of the  ‘A London Life…’ series

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A London Life… at The Canary Wharf Sky Garden

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The Canary Wharf Sky Garden | Crossrail Place | Nearest Tube: Canary Wharf

Finding tranquility in London is a lot easier than some might think. Although I’m sure most of you would scoff at me if I said you could find it smack bang in the middle of Canary Wharf. An area known for it’s skyscrapers is the last place you’d expect to find a bounty of greenery. However a few weeks ago I made it my mission to find this hidden gem.

With V.A in tow, we battled the crowds of shoppers and made it out to the new Crossrail Place complex. It was eerily quiet outside amongst the skyscrapers, and I half thought we’d taken the wrong exit. However we soon realised we were in the right place, and so we crossed the bridge and rode the escalators to the heavens. Heavens is maybe a slight exaggeration here as the sky garden isn’t particularly high, although it does offer a lovely view over London. However what I enjoyed most was how serene the garden was. Everything has been carefully landscaped, and laid out alongside spacious paths. As we weaved in and out of the tropical plants, it was easy to forget that we were still in London.

Unfortunately the garden doesn’t go on forever, but there’s plenty to see (and Instagram). The variety of plants on display is amazing, and the contemporary architecture is astonishing – just look at that roof! I’m a big architecture/plant geek and I have to say, this is now one of my favourite spots in London. I could easily find myself relaxing here for the afternoon with a book, or sharing a coffee with some friends.

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A London Life… at The Basics Store Pop-up

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Finding a brand that encompasses your personal style is not easy. Why would it be when there are stores aplenty? I personally prefer to stick to shopping in a few quality stores though (coucou Sandro & Claudie Pierlot). Maybe my time in Japan influenced me, but once I fall for a brand I stay loyal. So being able to find a store with a concept that suits me is a miracle.

Enter The Basics Store.

The Basics Store is a curated concept store for everyday essentials, with a focus on craftsmanship and luxury. Brands include: Marina London, Danielle Foster, Dear Frances, Blake LDN, Clarice Price Thomas and Jessie Harris. I knew of all of the brands before visiting the store, which is certainly a good sign. Blake LDN and Marina offer up beautifully crafted garments, whilst Danielle Foster, Clarice and Jessie provide exceptional accessories. The Avery Perfume Gallery has also taken up residency, to keep you smelling as good as you look. Honestly I hadn’t heard of any of the perfume brands, however I instantly fell for ROADS fragrances (in particular Cloud 9). In a nutshell, it’s easy to see that The Basics Store has chosen a handful of high quality brands and designers. Expertly curated, this is one store I dare anyone not to love.

The shop is open for one month, from 13th June – 13th July. Located in the heart of Shoreditch at 30a Redchurch Street, the pop-up will be offering free talks and workshops throughout the month including ear-piercing, live music, style consultancy and juicing demonstrations.

Thank you to Eva who took the photos of me.

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If you liked this, check out the rest of my A London Life series.

A London Life… in Stoke Newington

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Stoke Newington | East London | Nearest Tube: Dalston Kingsland Overground

As I prepare to say goodbye to the part of London that I’ve spent the 3 years in, I decided to take one last long photo walk around Dalston and Stoke Newington. I will still be living in East London, but I’m moving on to greener pastures (or something like that). I’ll miss this part of London, but I’m excited to start a new adventure and see even more of this amazing city.
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