12 Nov 2013

Visiting Brighton In The Rain






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It's not often I visit somewhere soggy and grey with the wind howling up my skirt and don't feel like running to the nearest cafĂ© and bolting the door, but Brighton is different it has this strange effect, of making you feel like you are on the set of some magic show, which leaves you feeling curiouser and curiouser . Everywhere I looked smiling visitors and locals, coated in thin plastic macs were skidding around the shiny boards of Brighton Pier. Dodging in and out of amusement arcades and sitting on the shingle beach eating pale fat chips doused in vinegar,
 
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 waiting to be blasted by the sound of another wave crashing onto the beach. After the frustration of trying to capture a giant one-eyed furry yellow minion with a useless/rigged metal claw, it felt like the right time for a game of mega air hockey, my winning streak back,
 Christmas shopping was next on my list. I found some leopard print soaps in Heals, a whoopee cushion in a sweet brown vintage box (there are little people in my life) pop art, cartoon ceramic cups, with phrases like Zap and Pow in pink and purple and some Choccywoccydoodah activity books.
 
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tea and biscuits in Brighton
 


 I wanted a giant felt robin and a stripy Christmas mitten, but decided to calm my Christmas shopping fever by experiencing the Zen of Brighton's eastern inspired pavilion. You're not allowed to take photographs inside, but I managed to snap it's fairy tale peaks peeping out of some trees. Whatever you do, if you ever go to Brighton, visit Brighton Royal 
Pavilion!

 

Georgian buildings

 
giant Christmas decorations

 
 Some people get goose bumps listening to music. I get goose bumps about unusual buildings and clothing and this place gave me a lot! It was a real Charlie and the Chocolate factory moment when I stepped into the entrance, the first things I noticed were giant chandeliers suspended by huge carved dragons, blindingly bright emerald green and yellow walls. Bamboo everywhere, including the banisters that ran up the side of the grand staircase, nodding Chinese figures and ornate hand knotted pink and gold silk rugs, but what I love most about it, none of this was taken from a real idea of the East. The Palace was never intended to last, it was created for the Prince Regent to inspire playfulness, based on the designer's brief to recreate the east and fun loving Brighton sprung up around it. If your lucky and it's not too busy you can have high tea upstairs, check out the tea pot! If you fancy freezing your bum off and sampling the delights of the Pav you can find out more here.
 
high tea at Brighton Royal Pavilion

 

31 Oct 2013

Halloween At Choccywoccydoodah

 
 
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I finally got to make my long-awaited  pilgrimage to Choccywoccydoodah in Brighton the makers of all things fun-loving and chocolate. I was on a mission in my camper to pick up one of the house style birthday cakes, but first I had to try to penetrate through the thick gloopy gauze of cobwebs that had been lovingly draped over this year's Halloween display in their shop window; devotees of the Choccy series will know that nearly all the Choccy family
 (sorry these are real humans I'm referring to, not hollow chocolate figures wrapped in foil) are dog owners, so some how chocolate dogs, including my favourite Westy and French poodles with a full head of marshmallow curls always seem to feature in every window display theme alongside other shamazing creations that Dave the head designer has sculpted, such as this years chocolate graveyard.
Did you do anything fun this Halloween?
 
 
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UK lifestyle blog - My Passport to Style
 
UK lifestyle blog- My Passport to Style
 
UK lifestyle blog- My Passport to Style
 
UK lifestyle blog- My Passport to Style
 
 
 
UK lifestyle blog- My Passport to Style
 

17 Oct 2013

Tartan

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 I'm not sure if it's because I'm half Scottish that I get so sentimental about tartan, but I like that this fabric always manages to be edgy but reassuring homespun at the same time, and as long as you have plenty of black in your wardrobe, you can never go wrong with tartan pants or a skirt.

16 Oct 2013

My Passport to Style | Reviews Moroccan Bazaar

 

 
UK lifestyle blogger - My Passport to Style


 
Visiting Morocco features on my very long bucket list, so when I was invited to step into the pages of a souk by Moroccan Bazaar. I dived straight in. My own home is mish-mash of bright colours, and eclectic pieces add in a good measure of geometrical design, and the ritual of mint tea sipped in a walled court yard garden and that pretty much sums up Moroccan style. If you’re looking for a dose of mystery and excitement in your home, THIS online Bazaar has taken all the best elements of Moroccan decor and design and woven them into a sweet carpet ride that transports you to the narrow streets of artisan crafts men busy making things in the baking heat that you never knew you wanted, but now you do.

10 Oct 2013

My Passport to Style | Influential Trends A/W13

 

 
This is a proud moment, if ever us bloggers have been influential, it was clearly visible on the A/W 13 runways where maxed out layers ruled supreme, any blogger worth her salt has perfected the art of piling on layers of fabric to add texture and interest. We learnt it from the best in the business Susie Lau.

 I’m not sure about the trend for only buying half a coat ( because the rest has been skilfully lopped off, with a very expensive pair of shears) somehow it doesn't feel like money well spent, but I’m keen to emulate some of the artful tucks, luxe folds and fabric clashes as paraded on the A/W13 catwalk shows.

 Thankfully, hourglass gals like me can celebrate that curve hugging pieces have not been wiped from the face of the high street just yet by heavy pleated pants and thick slouchy coats as we are all encouraged to man up.

After spending a pretty frustrating morning trying to pare down (read cram) the contents of four rails of clothing into my very small glossy black closet, I rediscovered a 50’s inspired shift dress that I could wear with an old khaki cropped roll neck layered over it, to transform it into a wiggle skirt, result!         



 
*mages courtesy of vogue*

25 Sep 2013

Boring Beauty Routines Versus Beautiful Obsessions


 


When it comes to maintaining high standards of grooming aka our French cousins, I can be a bit slack as we head into autumn and start to show less skin. My slightly ambitious summer head to toe body care regime (don’t snigger) goes down the plug hole to use a favourite northern expression.

 I prefer to indulge in a long fuss free wallow in the bath instead or hit the snooze button rather than jump out of bed and reach for a hard bristle brush equivalent to a broom in texture to whisk away my dead skin cells.

21 Sep 2013

Perfect Your Posh Pout With Beauty UK

 



 
 
Jumbo lip crayons are tres fashionable right now so if you don't yet have some in your pencil case/makeup bag go and sit on the naughty step. Apart from being fashionable. What is it about these chubby buddies that makes them so loveable and popular? Well, I put it down to a few things; they are rather cute, a breeze to hold and control, not as heavy as a lipstick but offer more colour pay off than a gloss, and the good ones are moisture rich with plenty of pigments that last, what's not to like?

15 Sep 2013

2013 Vintage By The Sea Event - Celebrates 80 Years Of The Midland Hotel



vintage event - vintage by the sea
 
 

art deco staircase morecambe
 

What did you get up to yesterday? I spent three hours, deciding which vintage-inspired look I should wear, (based on our very unpredictable British weather) for my invitation to Wayne Hemingway's event, Vintage By The Sea. I finally decided on a Ben de Lisi 50s inspired, linen wiggle dress, a bright blue linen coat with chunky black buttons and ruffles on the front and a small black patent, boxy, grab bag.
 
two women on the stairs wearing vintage
 
 
 Outfit sorted, camera and brolly packed, I wiggled my way down to the train station. Ten minutes later I was enjoying lovely views of Morecambe bay, whilst I tottered along the prom to the Midland. I love visiting the Midland hotel and taking in all its creamy art-deco curves and lines. It was nice to see it overflowing with people and all thing's vintage, from Punch and Judy shows; classic cars and ice-cream vans to glam gals wearing red lipstick and seamed stockings.
 

vintage vehicle at vintage event
 
 I managed to pick up a vintage bargain inside at one of the vintage clothing stores a malteeser coloured mock croc clutch. I was very tempted to have a full retro hair and make over at Guys, and Dolls pop up salon seeing some of the starlets emerging from a mist of Elnett hair spray, but I decided to save my money for a visit to the Routunda bar and a date with Elvis (well his music really) a chip butty made with smoke butter and a butterscotch Daiquiri which was every bit as dreamy as it sounds.
 
vintage event
 
vintage clothing stall
 
 
vintage hair salon
 
vintage cocktail menu
 
 
 Sadly, I didn't get to chat to Wayne about his American Indian wrestling father Billy Two Rivers, or the many crazy outfits he got to model as a child on Morecambe prom created by his mum and his nan, or to ask how he felt about moving out of fashion and into design on a much bigger scale, but if I had of done, I would have wanted to thank him for throwing such a great 80th birthday party for the Midland Hotel and Morecambe his hometown.       
 


vintage fashion at the Midland hotel Morecambe
 



 

13 Sep 2013

Wayne Hemingway Hosts Vintage By The Sea In Morecambe


 Morecombe 1

If you have heard of British designer Wayne Hemingway MBE you will probably know he is viewed a little like the Godfather of vintage in the UK and set up his fashion label Red or Dead in London in 1982 with his wife Geraldine.

 A custard tart or butter pie might be more his cup of tea than a bowl of Italian spaghetti and meatballs as he was born in the small seaside town of Morecambe, famous for its sunsets and art deco hotel, which luckily for me is just up the road.
 Whether you have heard of Mr Hemingway’s label Red or Dead or not, you might be interested to know he will be hosting one of his famous yearly vintage bashes not in London, but in Morecambe to celebrate the Midland Hotels eightieth birthday this year.
 I’m going to be hopping on a fast train to Morecambe tomorrow (Saturday14th September) to sample a pick and mix of the best vintage has to offer at the Vintage by the Sea one day festival.        

 
 


*images courtesy of vintagefestival.com*
 

8 Sep 2013

#Organic Beauty Weekend | Fushi Organic Coconut Oil

 

 
organic hair styling product


I love my Hunter wellies and splashing in the occasional puddle at weekends, but lately I've decided to trade them in for a luxurious lock in, in my bathroom while I surround myself with beauty products that I would like to experiment with. I never seem to get the time mid week, I've decided my favourite type are those products that are nothing much to look at but have so many satisfying uses and give me what I imagine being A-list results.



 It's a bit like make up wipes or baby wipes which I prefer as I like my wipes big! I don't know many of my friends who just use them for removing makeup, from emergency wipes for spills on clothing, to cleaning shoes and dusting leather furniture when what should be used instead has run out, wet wipes in my friendship circles save the day, ok I'm not sure about the A-list beauty results of makeup wipes, but you feel me, right?

5 Sep 2013

#Destination Denim

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So today I want to talk plain old denim minus any fancy pants prints, you probably already know that I’m slightly denim phobic, seeing as I’m on a good day I’ll just say I have a curvaceous Beyonce type lower half and I have struggled in the past to find jeans that I can honestly say work better than a pair of trousers or a dress, my wardrobe/floor, cough, is over flowing with my alternatives simple jumpsuits, track pants, pj and Capri trousers.

My Passport To Style | Why I Don't Do Denim




Believe it or not saying you don't do jeans is a taboo subject in Britain it's like saying you don't put salt and vinegar on your chips. How do I know this because I am one of a growing minority or women that realise that as much as they love denim jeans, they don't do much for their hourglass figure, the sometimes thick stiff fabric bunches up in the wrong places. I think perhaps Europeans have a slightly different attitude they don't feel that their sense of style and youth are so deeply imbedded in the denim culture, they enjoy tailored clothing. British women wear more denim than any other country and whilst I have no wish to outlaw denim in the UK, it has become a bit of a uniform, to the point that if I wear a simple A-line dress, my friends think  I have dressed up! Hooray for camel flares and A-line pinafore dresses! 



2 Sep 2013

Why I Like Being Fashionably Late

 
 
 


 
I have been sucked into a bit of a non fashion vortex recently, which is not really the type of thing you admit to if you’re a Fashion blogger, but as my official title is Fashion and Lifestyle blogger, I think I can allow myself the occasional slip up. So how did I find my way out of it? Simple really, a chance encounter with a lilac leather slipper with an elegant studded toe after a bit of a lame search for some sensible, go with everything type of flats on eBay. My heart started to beat a little faster and my palms got slightly sweaty when a pair of lovely lilac leather slippers by a designer I had never heard of, Olivia Rubin ( I did say vortex!) popped up, one click later, they were sold to the lady in the fluffy dressing gown and Harry Potter mug, it was Sunday!
 

 I hear that apart from many other colours pale pink is big this winter 2013. Last winter I bought an A-line skirt in sugar almond pink, but struggled to find some shoes that worked with it, I personally like to toughen up pastel shades with navy, black and slate grey but nothing seemed to quite work, until I found the perfect compromise in these pretty flats the black toe caps have been generously sprinkled with tiny gold baubles and a few larger gold studs for good measure.
 
 
 Metallic toe caps seem to be popping up a lot lately and these feel luxe but still casual enough to wear with my pink skirt during the day, even better, through my chance shopping encounter on eBay I discovered the rest of Olivia Rubin’s collection of wacky and fun S/S13 architectural prints in the Asos sales. I guess being the last to know about a designer label does have its perks! I heart the dress with the eye wateringly pretty pansy design, Olivia Rubin’s big gutsy pastel leopard print with a sporty zipper and her purple slightly slouchy long sleeved brick T, the last time I felt this pleased to discover a new designer range was after discovering Henry Holland’s granny inspired winter prints and Tatty Devine’s fish bone necklace.         


 
 

 *images courtesy of asos *

24 Aug 2013

What Things I Bought In Venice

 
 
on holiday in Venice
 
Before I went on my recent trip to Venice, I read post after slightly bitter post about how impossible it is to find a bargain souvenir or gift in Venice, so I was determined to use my stealth and blogger cunning to help me seek some out and I think I succeeded. I came home with an elegant bottle of Limoni di Sicilia, which is basically a really nice lemon licqueur similar to Limoncello, that can be used to make cocktails or to pour over ice-cream and yes I know its typical to Italy not Venice, but as pretty much over half the things we buy in the UK are made in China, I'm happy to not be too picky and think out of the box a little.
 
Venetion culture
 
The local Venetian Co-op may not be oozing style, but it's a good place to find some well priced goodies that the locals consume. Using my highly tuned blogger stealth I bypassed the bland looking cereals section, dodged some very dangerous shopping trolley manoeuvres and landed slap bang in the middle of the drinks section right next to glowing yellow bottles of Limoni di Sicilia priced at just 8, score!
 
shop window selling confectionary
 
 I pounced on a few boxes of the local hot chocolate, which I have tasted before, it's like drinking a thick chocolate soup and at a couple of euro's a box it was a no brainer, but my ultimate super ninja gift seeking stroke, was spotting some beautiful triple distilled genuine Venetian rose water in apothecary style, deep blue bottles, made from plastic they were nice and light for packing in my suitcase and at just 3.50 euros a bottle I greedily took the last 4 of the shelf, rose water makes a lovely natural toner and is great to soothe any sunburn too.
 
 
 
Next I picked up a  black lace fan for 7 euros to help me waft myself elegantly, if your going to buy one, get one from Torcello, a serene little island which is supposedly where Venice first began and worth visiting, then it was off to my favourite place the glass blowing island of Murano, after swooning over a zillion glass chandeliers I finally treated myself to a beautiful soft aqua rose shaped glass ring, with silver leaf inside, it cost me 14 euros, but I would happily have paid much more for it.
 
image of Venice
 
 
 Back in Venice and down town, towards Cannaregio I found a glass seconds shop if you know Italy or Venice you will know that Murano glass is very expensive as well as stunning, for about another 12 euros I picked up a small red glass love bird and a handbag holder inlaid with a pretty glass mosaic tree, in the same area I forced myself into a t-shirt shop expecting very expensive and tacky and was chuffed to discover some cool contemporary interpretations of the symbol of Venice the lion and some kitsch Venetian t-shirt designs for about 12 euros each.
 
Don't forget to pack your hotel toiletries, after lovingly capturing them on film, mine are still at our hotel! We also accidentally left with one souvenir to many our very heavy brass hotel key fob. The MR was not super happy to cover the £8.00 p&p for 2nd class return postage! Do you have a favourite thing you picked up on your travels? I had fun taking photographs of my Venetian haul after my stealth shopping trip.



marzipan gift shop in Venice

 
poster of fashion and lifestyle brand Etro
 
 
bottle of lemonchello
 
 
roberts rose water
 

ring displayed on spout of tea pot
 

fan displayed on walnut cabinet in hotel in Venice