Sunday, 27 July 2014

The Conservatory

The Barbican Conservatory is another London hidden gem - it's only open on Sundays between 12pm and 5pm but its a little oasis of tropical plants and fish ponds:

Top: Topshop, Trousers: Primark, Sandals: Birkenstock, Sunglasses: RayBan
I think this might be the first time I've worn trousers on this blog. Apart from when I'm running, trousers do not form part of my wardrobe vocabulary but when I saw this pair in Primark I couldn't resist (and they were cheap enough to not make me feel too guilty if I couldn't bring myself to ever wear them). I actually quite liked wearing them, super loose and cool for a hot day and no fear of flashing some hapless tourists at the slightest gust of wind. (Oh, skirts, I do still love you really).

Trousers or skirts?

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Hot Hot Summer

It's been a while since I've done an outfit post. This outfit isn't even new or "c/o". It's just what I wore to the Whitecross Street Party last weekend.

Dress: Forever 21, Sandals: Birkenstock, Belt: Primark, Sunglasses: Ray Ban, Loom Band Bracelet: made by me
Thanks to Sophie for taking the pictures. Until I become a proper grown-up, nail stickers and Loom Bands will be my accessories of choice. The bracelets are so addictive to make and I find them quite a good way to wind down at the end of the day (much cheaper and healthier than a bottle of wine, too).

Are you in on the Loom Bands craze?

Sunday, 20 July 2014

A (Hot) Weekend In The City

After weeks of berating the English summer weather, it's finally hot. Albeit with a few massive thunderstorms. I do love a bit of extreme weather, its nice to be reminded that nature is still in control (but that your iPhone forecast is actually quite accurate for timing the downpours). 

Celebrating the start of the weekend with my new addiction - frozen yogurt frappuccinos. Just when I thought I was over my Starbucks obsession. 

Walking from the City to Camden because this weather is not for taking the tube in. Thought these buildings looked like they were made of Lego in the evening sunshine.

Despite living in London for almost 7 years, I still spot new things and I hope that never stops - tired of London, tired of life. This 1920s style cat adorned building caught my eye.

Waiting for Conor Oberst to come on stage at Koko. Slight deja-vu to last Wednesday when I saw him in the same venue and a throwback to my younger days when many a night was spent dancing at Club NME here.

Conor during the encore. I've seen Conor Oberst / Bright Eyes a fair few times and the shows are always so great, he has the nicest fans and its always a pretty chilled out affair. I'm a bit too old for the mosh-pit these days.

Decorating my nails with some nail wraps from the Topshop sale. I used to paint my nails all the time but realised I hadn't even unpacked my box of nail polishes since I moved flat.

Whitecross Street market is well known for its weekday lunchtime offerings but once a year the party extends into the weekend too. Sunshine, friends, street food and a water squirting wheelie bin on the loose made for a fun Saturday. Again, many thanks to the person who invented G&T in a can.

The lake at the Barbican Centre is one of my favourite spots in London. It's in the heart of the City and yet so peaceful that its very easy to forget where you are. Spotted this mother duck taking a swim with her ducklings.

Almost wanting to jump in to the lake to cool off.

Sunday - seems like this isn't the weather for lie-ins. My flat felt about as hot as my tent at Glastonbury which reminded me that I hadn't been on a run since my run around the festival site. I sneakily stopped for a few more Books About Town pictures:

 The last one is Bridget Jones' Diary, in case you were wondering. 

My friend P and I spent the afternoon sitting by the Barbican Lake. I matched my cake to my nails. 

I finally made it to the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibition at the Barbican - definitely one of the best fashion exhibitions I've been to for a while. The pieces on display were so varied, from Breton stripes to...slightly less wholesome outfits! 

How was your weekend?

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Books About Town

Londoners might have recently spotted some new benches around the city. These book shaped creations are part of the National Literacy Trust's Books About Town - a celebration of London and books (both things I love). I've been snapping the ones that I've seen which haven't had people sitting on them:

Can you guess what books these are?

Monday, 7 July 2014

A Weekend (and a Monday) in the City

Hello, July. This year is flying by. Without the milestones of academic years and long summers time seems to go by far too fast. My blog has seen a bit of a change lately - outfit photos have taken a backseat due to a lack of a full length mirror, a blank wall for tripod photos or an outfit photographer boyfriend. I'm working on all three so that I can start blogging outfits again soon although I've been rather restrained on the clothes buying front lately. "Clear out / car boot" has been on my to-do list for far too long and I really need to get into gear before I'm unable to leave my flat due to a deluge of clothes.

This weekend was a rather chilled one, I'm still claiming post-Glastonbury sleep deprivation but managed to drag myself out of an actual bed for some it of:

I popped home and my canary, Sonny, popped out of his cage. He is moulting at the moment so please excuse his scruffy appearance!
John Lewis sent me some vouchers for free coffee and cake. Chocolate and lavender tart for lunch, yes please!
My mum bought me a loom making kit on John Lewis. Being an adult is seriously overrated sometimes.
I made these. It took a while to get my head around how to do it but once it clicked I was addicted!
My mum and I went to see Anthony and Cleopatra at The Globe. Always a good atmosphere - don't forget to hire a cushion!
Street Art on the Southbank.
Finally got to try Hanoi Kitchen at Kerb - I had tofu noodles, so good!
The Tour de France came through London today, made for a bit of a different lunchbreak and there was a great atmosphere even without actually seeing any cyclists. 
How was your weekend?

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Festival Fash Pack

I've just come back from Glastonbury but the festival season is far from over. Duo Boots challenged me to put together an outfit featuring their Idaho boots so I thought I'd share some of my festival picks which would also work for city life, too:

Boots - Duo; Rucksack, Jumper, Leggings, Hat, Sunglasses, Waterproof, Dress - all Topshop
When it's not a mud-fest like most of Glastonbury was, the Idaho boots would be perfect- the heel might help me see a bit more of the bands rather than the back of the head of the person standing in front of me! Proper shoes are a festival essential - one does not want to brave a portaloo in flip-flops... I cringed every time I saw someone do this. Don't.

Layering is the key to festival dressing (and dressing in England pretty much most of the time) as the weather can change dramatically during the course of a day. A floral sundress, leggings and a cosy jumper should definitely be in your festival rucksack. Remember it gets cold at night so while you may not think you need a jumper in the summer, you probably do. A hat is an easy way to disguise messy hair and protect you from the sun if does make an appearance.

Store your money, phone, camera and suncream / pack-a-mac in a rucksac or bumbag - it leaves your hands free for holding your drink and dancing. It's not like there's anywhere to put your bag down! Also see above re portaloos... It might not be the done think in the real world, but at a festival dancing in wellies, a bumbag and a jumper is perfectly normal (and in a way more enjoyable than the 6-inch heels and is-this-too-short dress that you'd dig out for a home night out).

Finally, get ready for rain - a lightweight waterproof will be your best purchase, get one you can fold away or tie around your waist when you're not wearing it. Sunglasses are an essential even if the sun isn't out and a festival is the perfect opportunity to sport a novelty pair to disguise the fact that you went to bed at 6am and were woken an hour later by your "tent neighbours" having a lively guitar singalong...

What are your festival picks?

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Glastonbury 2014 - Truly Epic

I've just got back from my first Glastonbury. My ears are still ringing and my entire body aches but I had the most amazing time I could have hoped for. Despite the thunderstorms which turned the entire site into a muddy mess after Friday afternoon and despite forgoing every home comfort imaginable (flushing toilets, a shower and a G&T with ice cubes now feel like the ultimate indulgences) I had an amazing time.

Glastonbury is a complete break from and antidote to real life - there are hundreds of thousands of people from all walks of life and (almost) anything goes. Popping to the loos at 8am (when they've just been cleaned) and passing someone swigging from a can of Strongbow seems totally normal. Dancing until sunrise in muddy wellies is far more fun than spending two hours getting ready for a big night out. And a £3 soya cappuccino tastes like the best money you'll have ever spent after spending 3 hours attempting to sleep on a tent floor while the party caries on around you.

I sung, danced, sunbathed, got soaked in several thunderstorms, went to a yoga class in a tent, meditated, crawled backwards on the floor to get into a bar, went for a run (on the first morning) and didn't stop smiling (even after a particularly horrifying long-drop experience). Glastonbury, you were truly epic.

Yes, there was mud. Sticky mud, slippery mud, wet mud... But it wouldn't have been Glastonbury without some.
Saturday morning sunrise at the Stone Circle after a night of dancing. The site is huge and seeing the sunrise over it was absolutely beautiful (a rare moment of quiet only interrupted by the sound of nitrous oxide canisters being set off every few seconds).
The Ribbon Tower in The Park (my landmark for finding my way back to the tent)
Helter-skelter in the Fields of Avalon. It's incredible how everything is built for the week of the festival - the non-permanence makes everything feel that more special, like you have to take everything in while you have the chance to do so.
The Glastonbury sign after Thursday's early morning run - jogging around the site with the running group felt like the most rebellious thing I did at Glastonbury (while being pointed and laughed at by festival goers enjoying their breakfast can of lager).
Arcade Fire on the Pyramid Stage on Friday night. An amazing set and my musical highlight.
Glastonbury has the most amazing selection of food. I defied this and ate falafel in some form every day - the falafel diet has to be the best one I've ever tried.
With ma girlz Sophie and Hannah during Manic Street Preachers on the Other Stage.
Dolly Parton on the Pyramid Stage.
My favourite view - the flags around the Other Stage in the sunshine. The media got a bit fixated on the mud but when the sun was out Worthy Farm was stunning.
Have you been to Glastonbury?