Monday, 27 August 2012

A very vintage wedding

Friends come and go but sometimes in life you meet those really special people who you have a lifelong connection with. One of those people for me is my uni friend Emma (along with all the other girls I hung around with during my degree course, no exceptions) whose sunny outlook, good advice and sense of fun make her a hugely important part of my life.

A couple of weeks back The Boy and I hit the road, left the big smoke and headed to the market town of Marlborough to see Emma marry her wonderful now-husband Kyle.
Clockwise from top left: The gorgeous wedding programme - Jade of Cellardoor Magazine
 and I enjoy afternoon tea in the sunshine - The gorgeous bridesmaid dresses from Hobbs (and a mini version - so cute!) - The beautiful wedding car

The happy couple

The day turned out to be a truly special one - from Emma's beautiful dress, to the wonderful wedding car, the delicious food, and the perfect setting - no detail had been left to chance and the The Boy and I had a lovely time. The setting was so romantic, both at the village church and at the town hall where the reception was held - the day was quintessentially Emma and Kyle, to a tee.

It was great to see everyone again and share in the occasion, here's some snaps of the day.
Clockwise from top left: Emma's beautiful wedding dress - Pimms o'clock - The happy couple outside the church - The table settings, featuring vintage style postcards for name cards (with personal messages from the bride and groom)
Clockwise from top left: hands down, the most delicious wedding cake I've ever tasted. EVER. Red velvet and by the supremely talented Restoration Cake - Me with the beautiful Imogen, Naomi and Suze - The reception - Emma and Amy - The first dance - The lovely ladies: Suze, Amy, Lollie and Jade - Can't beat a sweets bar - The beautiful Amy, Olivia and Sally

Congratulations Mr & Mrs Holloway - wishing you a lifetime of happiness together!

Saturday, 25 August 2012

27 Things I know and love about Zsa Zsa

Brace yourselves for (another) overly sentimental post, for yesterday, the 24th of August, marked a very special day in the L&F household. Not only was it a Friday and I didn’t have to go away for the weekend for a wedding (huzzah!), it was also my best friend Zsa Zsa’s 27th birthday!

I’ve only known Zsa Zsa (Sasha to everyone else) for a little over a year but she has fast become a HUGE part of my life and I don’t know where I’d be without her – her straight talking and great advice on anything from friendship, to career choices, to our similarly hopeless boyfriends, has gotten me through many a trialling day/week.

She means the world to me so I thought I’d share with you all 27 things I know and love about Zsa Zsa:

  1. Her childlike excitement for anything remotely involving food. I don’t even need to say the name of a restaurant or bar, only “I read about this place on The Londoner” and Zsa will cut me off with “So, when are we going?”
  2. The fact that these are the only two photos in existence of just the two of us - we're always too busy taking photos of each other.
  3. The fact that we don’t even need to speak to know what the other is thinking.
  4. The fact that the men in our lives both have an appreciation of all things nerdy – as this means they’re kept occupied whilst Zsa and I are shopping/gossiping/eating/watching episodes of The City. I don’t however think that the ever stylish Ben has any chance of persuading The Boy to wear a cardigan, much the pity.
  5. Her hair. I just love Zsa’s hair when it’s braided – I always wanted to look like Lauryn Hill in Sister Act 2 when I was growing up, which as a skinny, blonde, white girl, came as quite a disappointment to realise that having my hair braided might not be the best idea.
  6. The fact that she is the oracle when it comes to discount codes – if there’s money off to be had, you can guarantee Zsa knows about it.
  7. Her singing in the shower – whenever Zsa stays over it’s always a musical treat.
  8. Both Ben (Zsa’s boyfriend) and Zsa push me to get out of my comfort zone. Our recent trip to Thorpe Park was pretty terrifying for me (a girl who hates rollercoasters) but thanks to their encouragement (and the fact I was given no other option) I went on numerous rides and had an absolutely fantastic time.
  9. That she loves a good gossip/moan/rage session.
  10. Her amazing sense of fashion - I always look forward to seeing the next ensemble she comes up with.
  11. The fact that we both have the Spice Girls on our iPods – and no we are not ashamed of this fact!
  12. Her mutual appreciation of The Cheesecake Factory (even though she’s never been!). Don’t worry Zsa, I plan on taking you to the one in Florida when we go next year.
  13. That she loves peanut butter Kit Kat chunky's just as much as me.
  14. That she loves to wind both The Boy and Ben (her boyfriend) up just as much as I do.
  15. The fact that, like me, she ALWAYS has room for dessert.
  16. Her laugh: cackle, snort, squeal - I love them all (and mimicking them is one of my all time favourite things to do).
  17. Zsa's blog: The Life Wardrobe. One of my favourite reads, it makes me think, makes me laugh, makes me lust over the contents of her amazing wardrobe, and truly is the ultimate representation of the fabulousness that is Sasha Glasgow in blog form.
  18. Her height. Zsa may consider herself short, whereas I just see her as perfectly proportioned - something I wish I was.
  19. Her keenness to hit the dance floor. Drunk, sober, on dry land, on a boat - location doesn't matter as long as the music is good.
  20. Her drive. When Zsa wants something she goes for it and doesn't stop until she's got it.
  21. Her passion. The first half of this year at work was a very difficult time for us due to forces outside our control but together we came through it and kept each other going. I believe we are both stronger women as a result.
  22. The fact I can share my dreams and aspirations with Zsa and she won't laugh (mainly because they're pretty much the same thing).
  23. Her ability to justify any purchase (I do this too). The two of us should never be allowed to go shopping together on payday-we behave as if we've won the lottery.
  24. The fact that she makes it acceptable for us to eat other people's left overs when we go for a work lunch.
  25. That she gets excited with me that Christmas is coming - in September.
  26. Her love of a bargain - be it reduced food in M&S or a sneaky sale purchase
  27. And most of all...that she is the first person I’ve met in a really long time, that I can truly call a friend – and a best one at that.
I love you Zsa Zsa - have a wonderful birthday weekend!

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Maraschino. You know, as in cherry.

Dressing up has always been a favourite past time of mine. Not in a go out wearing my underwear kind of way, more in a never want to grow up kind of way that has me wanting to dress as many a character from my childhood regardless of the event.

There doesn't even need to be an event - I just love to theme it up. My uni years brought with them many an idea for a night out which would have me rushing home with big ideas to make my next ensemble (much to my mothers pleasure). 

Now that I work full time (and don't have access to a seemingly endless supply of fabrics and trimmings-thank you mother) I often find myself scouring Jokers Masquerade looking for ideas and components for my next fancy dress costume.

I've always loved the musical Grease and yet I've never actually dressed up as any of the characters. Until now. 

The other week The Boy and I went to a screening of the film where fancy dress was encouraged and Joke were nice enough to send me over a Grease pink ladies jacket specifically for the occasion. I must confess, I've always wanted to dress up in pink ladies fancy dress (I mean, who didn't want to be in that gang? I secretly always wanted to be Marty) and slipping it on transported me back to the 1950s and urged me to burst into song. That's pretty much like any normal day for me (as my work colleagues will tell you) but at least I was rocking a theme!
The jacket fitted really nicely and I could have even done it up and worn it as a top. The beauty of the pink ladies jacket is that you can wear it even if you don't want to dress up that much, it can be slipped on over almost any ensemble, add a pair of peep toe shoes, red lippy and a silk scarf and you are good to go. I'm sure I'll be digging this jacket out for many a last minute fancy dress occasion in the future.

I'm already thinking about what I'm going to wear to mine and The Boy's annual Halloween party (I'm thinking Poison Ivy this year) so no doubt I'll be paying Joke another visit in the not too distant future.

You can find the pink ladies jacket I'm wearing along with other film fancy dress options here.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Looks I'm loving

I realised recently that it's been literally months since I last wrote a Looks I'm Loving post. It's not that I've not been seeing inspirational looks on other blogs and on Lookbook, I've just simply been busy doing other things (marathon training, weddings, hen do's, etc). I love putting together this type of feature though, as it really helps me think outside the box when considering what to wear for the week ahead.

The other evening I stumbled across the Lookbook page of Anni, a 23 year old blogger from Germany. Anni's style is pretty similar to mine: she loves a blazer, a skinny jean, a killer heel and an oversize clutch bag, just like me but there's something about the way Anni puts these ensembles together that really keeps me interested in what she'll come up with next.

All images found here

I actually own the bright pink/orange ensemble that Anni's wearing in the third set of pictures but I have the skirt instead of trousers (from Primark of all places!) and seeing these pieces teamed with white accessories has given me some new ideas on how to wear them in the future. And I'm already attempting to hunt down a similar necklace.
Find out more about Anni over on her fabulous blog fashionhippieloves

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

A weekend in Wells

A couple of weeks back The Boy and I took advantage of a rare free weekend when we weren't going to a hen do/stag do/wedding and headed to Somerset to visit his family for a few days. 

We don't get down to Shepton Mallet as often as I'd like (due mostly to the extortionate cost of the train or the bus-coupled with my general hatred of National Express) but when we do go, it is always a truly relaxing couple of days which leaves me wanting to return ASAP. 

On this particular weekend we all headed out to town for a walk in the sunshine and to check out the Swans of Wells, a public art event to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the city of Wells.
Those of you who read this blog regularly will know how much I enjoyed the Easter egg hunt that took place in London this year, the sense of fun when having to search for something and the delight at finding something unexpected certainly makes for a fun day out. So, naturally the idea of a Saturday morning stroll around Wells (a beautiful place as it is) whilst keeping a look out for a flock of swans designed by local artists was right up my street.
We started off in the churchyard and were soon spotting swans everywhere we went, each one more beautiful than the last. I loved so many of the designs and inevitably took far too many photographs but here are a selection of my personal favourites - I particularly enjoyed the "Queen of Shells" by Candace Bahouth, see below.

The idea behind the Swans of Wells is the display of 60 beautifully designed and decorated 5ft swan sculptures in and around the town, one for each of the sixty years of the Queen's reign. Taking place for just three months this summer, you can still catch the swans in and around Wells until early September, when they will be displayed as a flock in the grounds of Bishops Palace before being auctioned off for charity on September 29th.

We spent a couple of hours ambling around the picturesque city, popping into the odd shop and sampling the tasters at the local market (where I demanded The Boy buy me a chocolate brownie), before taking The Boy's Grandad out for lunch. It was a lovely morning, followed by a delicious meal in a local pub.

As much as I love a wedding, it was really nice to get the chance to spend the weekend relaxing with family, particularly as the day was followed by an evening spent in the sunshine in the back garden drinking a glass of Pimms - bliss!
Find out more about the Swans of Wells here.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

My week in photos 8

Another week of randomness at L&F, mostly revolving around Olympic madness in London, followed by an amazing and relaxing hen weekend in Bath. Healthy eating seems to have fallen by the wayside but one plus is that marathon training has kicked up a gear (finally!) and I'm now going for runs most evenings, even though so of them are pretty short! I will be posting an update this week on how I've been getting on with my new exercising regime but for now, here's what I've been up to over the past few days.
Clockwise from top left: Pretty much my favourite car (much to The Boy's dismay) - Yummy chicken and bacon salad for dinner - Olympic madness - Harrods in the afternoon sunshine - Can't wait for the Hobbs peplum belt to hit stores - Cute house in Bath, why don't I live here? - Loving the detail on this M&S jumper - Free Vitamin Water in High St Kensington? Don't mind if I do - Hen do bubbly - Loving my new Dorothy Perkins top - Dreaming of Autumnal dressing

Monday, 6 August 2012

HOBBS NW3: the wait is almost over

When I went to the Hobbs NW3 press day a few months back I could barely contain my excitement for the AW12 collections - I was pretty much over summer and was already aching for tweeds, knits and boots. So you can imagine my delight last week when the NW3 look book was released online, hinting at the imminent arrival of some of my favourite pieces from the new collection. It was the perfect opportunity for me to take another look at what the brand has in store over the coming weeks (i.e. compile my shopping list).

Personally I'm loving all these looks but I'm particularly excited for the wide leg trousers, leather jacket and pocket midi-skirt (there's also a gorgeous duck print shirt I'm lusting after). Bring on the colder weather that's what I say.

Find out more about NW3 and shop the collection here.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Random Wednesday: The Billionares playground

The excitement over the Olympics has reached fever pitch over the past few weeks and, I must say I was feeling a little bah humbug about the whole thing. Altered working hours and millions more people trying to take the last available seat on the already overcrowded tube? No thank you I thought. That is, until I dropped by the Olympic party held by Schön Magazine aboard the MS Deutschland last Wednesday. 
Currently operating as a floating hotel (that's come all the way from Germany) the MS Deutschland was the perfect setting for Schön Magazine to throw an amazing party celebrating all things German and wish the German team luck for the coming weeks.

Rebecca, Zsa Zsa and I ambled over after work to sample all that Germany and Schön Magazine had to offer, and let me tell you, we were more than impressed. The varieties of people in the queue to get on board was slightly baffling to begin with (imagine a load of MPs, on a boat, with everyone who works at All Saints and you'll come close to the scenario we were faced with). But from the the delicious pretzels, to the amazing setting, to the people themselves (who certainly know how to party) - we had a whale of a time and it was the perfect way to kick start our Olympic spirits (and was simply fuel to the fire for my ambitions to live abroad).
As I write this the Olympics have well and truly begun and I'm exhausted from all the 7am starts, but I must say I'm loving living in the 2012 Olympic city. I might not actually be going to any events but the buzz in town and the sense of community and fair play is easy to get swept up in. When we won our first gold in the women's rowing it was a special moment to watch the medal ceremony on the TV at work with my friends and seeing Bradley Wiggins take Gold in the time trials are memories that I'll remember all my life. 
So, I like sport. Who knew?

As the sun set, Zsa, Rebecca and I put the world to rights and danced the night away on board a cruise ship overlooking a collection of super yachts belonging to the worlds most rich and famous. I must say it was pretty surreal - and just what we needed on another random Wednesday. Thank you Schön!
 Image by Chris Butchart

You can read the amazing Schön Magazine here.
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