As Summer inevitably comes to an end, and colder weather approaches, the same question is on every Londoners mind; where do [I] go to drink when the rooftops close? I’m someone who doesn’t like to be out in the sun much, so I’m constantly on the look out for places I can impress my sun-worshiping friends with come Autumn. Being a blogger I’m lucky enough to get press releases and invites to new openings, which makes this process much easier. That said, I can be quite picky and I don’t take every opportunity offered to me. But when I received an invite to Death + Victory cocktail bar at Smiths of Smithfields, it sounded right up my street, so of course I accepted.
Would you care for a cocktail?
D+V’s menu comes in 5 chapters – each of which span a time period from 1100 to present day – with an emphasis on five spirits: whisky, tequila, gin, vodka and rum. As you may have noticed from my Instagram, I’m a gin fan, but I was eager to try something different. Luckily the talented bartenders at Death + Victory were on hand to help. I tried…
- Smooth Fields
- Jameson Caskmates, Amaro, egg white, lemon, sugar syrup. An ode to the grassy knoll that Smith eld market was originally built on, this cocktail blends the grassy overtones of Amaro with stout-seasoned Jameson Caskmates for the smoothest of nishes.
- Bull in a China Shop
- Beefeater 24, Lillet Rouge, Aperol, Campari, green tea. A wonderfully quintessential tea serve blending Beefeater 24 with refreshing green tea. Served in high-tea fashion. Just be careful of the rowdy cattle.
- The Horace
- Absolut Elyx, jasmine tea, Lillet Blanc, lemon juice, chocolate bitters, Champagne. A concoction that pays homage to the revered architect who designed Smith elds. And for whom our sister restaurant is named after. This refreshing Absolut Elyx serve is crafted with jasmine tea and topped with champagne. So raise a glass to the man.
Final thoughts on Death + Victory
I always like to try something new when I visit a cocktail bar, which can be a make or break situation for some. But I was really impressed with the cocktails at Death + Victory. I’m not being cliche when I say there is something for everyone – the concise menu means you’ll find a variety of spirits and flavours. And once you take that all away, what are you left with? A group of knowledgable bartenders and a vast array of cocktails, each with it’s own distinct flavour, made from quality ingredients. Death + Victory is definitely on my ‘must-visit again’ list.
Check out more: Where to Eat in London
5 Independent Wedding Stationery Designers You Should Know
When choosing the wedding stationery we would use as part of our celebrations, we knew the exact kind of style we wanted – minimalistic, with ties to nature. In some cases this was more prevalent than others, such as our place cards by Peach Wolfe Paper Co which feature flower and leaf motifs. And in others there was a looser connection, such as the Lilac and White menu cards, which we chose in a subdued natural tone to match the decorations. With there being so many options out there, it quite literally took us weeks to find something that suited our personal style, and matched the theme of the wedding.
5 Independent Wedding Stationery Designers
Part of what made the task so difficult was that we wanted to choose independent wedding stationery designers. I have to say that the sheer amount of talent out there is astonishing. On top of that, we didn’t quite realise just how important wedding stationery actually is. We knew that we would need Save the Dates and invites…but place cards, menus, ‘will you be my…’ cards?! We really weren’t expecting, or even considering, all of those.
Never the less, with the help of Not on The High Street, we were able to find the perfect wedding stationery for us:
- Peach Wolfe Paper Co.
- Lilac and White
- Jade Fisher
- Rodo Creative
- White Olive Design Studio
As you can see, we ended up with a lot more than we had bargained for. Once you begin looking at wedding stationery, it becomes a bit of a slippery slope. One major problem of finding so many amazing independent wedding stationery designers is that even now – with less than a month to go until our wedding – I find myself wanting to buy more. I think it’s time to go on a wedding stationery detox…
Check out the rest of my Wedding Series now!
This post is in collaboration with Not on The High Street, however all views, photos and words are my own.
My Beauty Must Haves: Dermalogica
I have sensitive skin and I’m not afraid to say it. But sometimes I am afraid to use beauty products on it. My issue with the majority of brands is that they use chemicals and alcohol in their products, and that upsets my skin, a lot. Because of this – and for many other reasons – I chose to turn my beauty cabinet around.
Dermalogica was one of the new brands I introduced into my routine. At the heart of their brand, Dermalogica offers a product line free of common irritants and ingredients that could cause breakouts (including lanolin, SD alcohol, mineral oil, artificial colors and fragrances). Exactly what I wanted. It was a brand that I’d had my eyes on for a few years but never tried. I picked up their Daily Microfoliant and suddenly I understood the buzz.
Beauty Must Haves: Dermalogica
Recently Dermalogica offered to send me some of their hero products. I may or may not have given an audible squeal when I read the message, and I think I typed out ‘yes, I love you’ quicker than when I said the exact same thing to my fiancé when he proposed. I’m joking…kinda. Seriously though, I was so ridiculously happy when I received my parcel, because it included not only my favourite product, but several I had yet to try.
I have already started using the primer, and I’m very excited to try the Precleanse (and everything else, duh)!
If you’re new to Dermalogica, and you can’t invest in a whole new set of products, their skin kits are a great way to introduce some of their top products into your skincare regime. Or you can get one for free if you do fancy a little spree, and spend over £60. Not bad, ey?
Check out more of my beauty must-haves now!
Welcome to my Skincare Regime
My love affair with French skincare started around five years ago. At the time I was travelling to-and-from France on a regular basis, and I was enthralled by the products that lined pharmacy shelves. They promised quality over quantity, unlike a lot of British & American beauty brands that churn out product after product. Not only that but most of the brands had reassuringly been around for years. One of these brands was Gatineau, founded back in 1932 by beauty therapist, Madame Jeanne Gatineau.
Over the years Jeanne Gatineau’s pioneering research and development has resulted in cosmetic breakthroughs that have been stepping stones for the entire beauty industry. Par exemple, Gatineau were the first beauty house in the world to develop an exfoliator and alcohol-free cleansers and toners – I bet you didn’t know that.
Back to 2018, and Gatineau very kindly offered to send me a selection of their products to try, which I was happy to accept. After all I had been longingly staring at them for several years now, and I was dying to try out more than the travel size companions (body lotion, and hand cream) I had in my beauty cabinet.
- Mélatogénine AOX Probiotics
- Perfection Ultime
- Collagene Experte
I’m currently using the Perfection Ultime Beauty Cream, and I’m completely in love with the texture and scent of the product. I recently had a bad breakout and this has helped bring back some luminosity to my skin. Alongside this I tried the Collagene Experte Eye Pads in my bi-weekly routine., which have been freshening up my tired eyes. I’ve yet to try the other items I received, but if this experience is anything to go by then I can’t wait. Gatineau’s products look, feel and ooze quality – exactly what I’d expect from a luxury skincare brand.
Check out more of my beauty must-haves now!
It’s that time of the year again, when every other sentence is either “Urgh it’s too soon for Christmas stuff” or “Oh my gosh, I can’t believe it’s Christmas already”. Whichever kind of person you are (I’m the latter), you are almost certainly beginning to think about gifts for Christmas. Right? I thought so. And in true Bloomzy tradition, I have decided to write a series of gift guides again this year. First up is ‘The Beauty Lover’s Christmas Gift Guide’, and it’s jam packed full of awesome products that will leave you looking like a pro gift giver.
The Beauty Lover’s Christmas Gift Guide
With several big launches this year, beauty products – in particular gift sets – are great standalone gifts or stocking fillers to put under the tree. I’ve included some of my favourite products from 2017, alongside some of the items I currently have on my own wish list. It’s safe to say you’ll find a variety of high quality brands and price points, from well known-names such as Givenchy and The Ordinary, to independent must-haves such as Etta French and Maya Nije. With this gift guide, you’re bound to impress any beauty lover.
If you enjoyed The Beauty Lover’s Christmas Gift Guide, check out the rest of my Christmas Gift Guide series.
Why independent shopping?
Independent shopping has become a hot topic, and with chains littering the high street it’s easy to see why. I for one am tired of poor quality mass produced items. And as more independent stores open across the country, it would seem that a lot of other people are too. My own hometown, Norwich, has seen a rise in independent stores and cafes, and they are thriving. But why? Well there are a lot of great reasons why you should be independent shopping:
- Quality products
- Unique gifts with a story
- Support your local shops
- Help someone do something they love
Where should I shop?
Well that’s entirely up to you. You may have some great local businesses and stores nearby. But if you don’t, or you just fancy checking out somewhere new, I have a few recommendations for you:
- This is the place for independent shopping. With boutiques across the UK you can shop from the comfort of your own home – or office desk etc – to find the perfect item for you and your loved ones. My current favourite is: Blabar
- Stranger London
- This one is for those who want a little bit of magic into their life, and homes. Run by my friend Yasumi, she focuses on unique pieces that scream adventure & personal wellbeing. The store boasts handmade pieces with nods to Japan, UK and Scandinavia. I’m a personal fan of her thread sketches.
- Weathered Penny
- If you’re into jewellery, this is the store for you. Their pieces come in a variety of contemporary styles, and they won’t break the bank. I love the hand earrings.
- Their choice of products is well thought out; they’re simple, functional and let’s be honest, aesthetically pleasing.
- This is one of my favourite local stores for fashion, and not only because they have their own cafe on the shop floor. They carry a range of quality brands such as Rains, Veja, and Mads Nørgaard.
- For the plant lovers and homeware addicts out there. I often stop by Botany’s store to browse their selection of plants. And I love that they offer workshops for those who really want to get hands-on.
Keep an eye out for my Christmas gift guides, coming soon!
Images are courtesy of Trouva, however all views, suggestions and words are my own.
My Travel Skincare Essentials – 2017 Recommendations
Travel and skincare are not always the best of friends. There’s a lot to take into consideration: the 100ml liquid rule for cabin bags, baggage space, non-breakables…and let’s not even start on the plane’s air con. For these reasons – and many others – I despised packing my skincare regime into my case. However after travelling so much this year, I like to think I have it down to a fine art.
My daily skincare regime is quite lengthly, and when I’m travelling I try to make sure it doesn’t suffer. And thanks to most brands bringing out travel size versions of their signature products, it doesn’t have to. So I’ve compiled a list which features my favourite travel skincare essentials, alongside some new products I’ve discovered.
My Travel Skincare Essentials
Everything I have included in this post is travel-sized, and can either be purchased separately as such or as part of a gift set. Where applicable I have linked to the specific product or set. However where some products are no longer available in travel size I have linked to the full size product. After all, you can always de-pot a product into a handy travel size kit!
Happy travels! And don’t forget to check out more of my travel recommendations.