30 May 2014

ALL WHITE BEDDING

I used to prefer white duvets and pillowcases with brightly-coloured, contrast bed sheets (I have azure blue, turquoise and navy) but I now prefer pure white bed linen. I don't know if it's that I've come to agree that the less-is-more ethos is more relaxing and serene in the bedroom or partly the assocation with bright white hotel beds, but it feels more luxe and polished. If you're in the white bedding market, The White Company has to be your first port of call.

The White Company luxury bed linen
The Single Row Cord set creates timeless, tailored elegance with its clean, crisp style which sits perfectly in both modern and classic bedrooms.

The luxury British interiors and fashion brand is currently offering up to 30% off bedding and free UK delivery. Time to refresh your bed!  Sweet dreams.
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FRIDAY'S FFFFOUND: LIVE TO RIDE

Live to ride, ride to live vintage cycling poster
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29 May 2014

PETIT BATEAU PRINTED T-SHIRTS

This summer, Petit Bateau’s iconic T-shirt will be available with vintage, graphic and sailor prints from the French fashion house's archives. Famous for its children’s clothing and underwear since its founder, Etienne Valton, invented cotton pants in 1918, Petit Bateau reached a turning point in its history in 1994 with its short sleeve T-shirts which became a must-have for young and old alike - Karl Lagerfeld even sent Claudia Schiffer down the catwalk in a Petit Bateau kids' tee that same year.

Petit Bateau women's printed t-shirts

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28 May 2014

CHANTAL THOMASS

Last summer I met my favourite lingerie designer, Chantal Thomass, at an event at Fenwick's when the French seamstress specialising in ready-to-wear, luxury lingerie and hosiery collections took over a window in the Bond Street flagship store.  I've known and loved Chantal Thomass since I was 15, when I was just a wee schoolgirl working Saturdays as a receptionist in a beauty salon stocking her perfume, which went onto become "my fragrance" for the next few years (I still love it, although she told me that the licensing is coming to an end, so I need to stock up), before I started admiring and collecting pieces of her beautiful underwear.

London fashion blogger Emma Louise Layla and French lingerie designer Chantal Thomass in Fenwick's, New Bond Street

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27 May 2014

APRIL INSTAGRAM PHOTOS

In April I spent a weekend in Ilkley and the Yorkshire Dales, went back to Paris where I fell in love with Monet's water lilies once more, visited Troyes in the Champagne region of France (sadly no wine-tasting... this time), watched the London marathon, went to a few good press days and spent as much time as possible sitting outside or cycling in the spring sunshine.

Emma Louise Layla fashion and lifestyle blogger London Paris Instagram photos
1. black and blue Topshop checks and black leather Marks and Spencer bag 2. April in Paris 3. Ilkley in bloom 4. trying out Nails Inc gel effect nail varnish at the Debenhams #DebsBeautyBuzz event 5. trusty white leather wedges 6. crushing on Sophia Webster at the AW14 MATCHESFASHION press day 7. Ladurée macarons and Champagne at a Petit Bateau press event 8. the London Marathon winner, Kenyan world record holder Wilson Kipsang 9. sunny shutters in Troyes

Emma Louise Layla fashion and lifestyle blogger London Paris Instagram photos
1. 55km of exploring Hertfordshire 2. bonne nuit, Paris 3. I love seeing designers' moodboards: Sweaty Betty's fashion-forward AW14 collection inspiration 4. receiving this grey leather Rusi Designs bag in the post made my day 5. who needs Coachella? In the London sunshine in Green Park 6. metallic brogues from Hobbs for AW14 7. perfect pansies in Marylebone 8. les nymphéas de Monet at the Musée de l'Orangerie 9. delicious Indian food at Marcel along the Canal Saint-Martin 

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24 May 2014

VICHY DERMABLEND

French pharmacies are a wonderful thing.  The pharmacists actually know what they're talking about so you can get great advice and they stock the best products from the best brands.  Vichy is one of those.  A pioneer of French pharmacy skincare for 80 years, the brand's founder Dr Haller put health at the heart of beauty, applying medical rigour to the cosmetics market.  I've recently been given some of their products to try out, which are perfect for those bad skin days.

Vichy Dermablend corrective compact cream foundation

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23 May 2014

FRIDAY'S FFFFOUND: VACAY

Holiday swimming
¡buenos días from Tenerife!
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21 May 2014

IT'S MY BIRTHDAY!

I am sliding from the mid-twenties to the late-twenties tickbox... Gah. Tomorrow I'm going to Tenerife, because, ever since my first birthday in Menorca (I've always liked hats), I believe that birthdays should be celebrated with a little trip somewhere. I hope you have a great long weekend too.

Menorca family holiday in 1988
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19 May 2014

GREY MATTER

One of my favourite things about working in the fashion industry is discovering up-and-coming brands. There are so many talented new designers out there, it's much more interesting to choose young labels, support new talent and wear something different instead of head-to-toe Topshop or Zara.

Grey leather Rusi Designs handbag on London fashion blogger Emma Louise Layla
doubling up with a grey and black shirt dress from British brand Lavish Alice

One of the designers I came across when I attended Pure in February was Rusi Designs, by Georgian-born, Bangkok-based British designer Rusi Hancock, who produces handmade luxury handbags, clutches and statement accessories using great quality leathers in a variety of colours, precious metals and a unique leopard motif logo. The bags are made in Thailand and exported internationally to Singapore, Paris, Mexico and London with more expansion plans lined up...

Rusi Designs grey leather Georgia cross body handbag

 Rusi kindly sent me the Georgia cross body bag in soft grey leather with silver hardware and I've received it so many compliments on it already - I love it and you'll love her bags too.
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18 May 2014

SUMMER VINYL

L.K. Bennett's summer heels have arrived.  Every season, the British luxury high street brand brings out a hero pair of shoes or accessory everyone goes crazy for and I hazard a guess that the Summer Vinyl Embellished Sandals will be this season's sellout item.

LK Bennett Summer Vinyl Embellished Sandal

With a four inch heel and adorned with vinyl embellishments, cut outs and eyelets, they're a polished pair of outfit-makers.  There's also a similar eyelet-covered statement clutch too, if the shoes aren't your thing.
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17 May 2014

CLEMENCE POESY

One of my favourite photoshoots with French actress and constant style list-topper Clemence Poesy is the February 2012 issue of Glamour UK, photographed by David Oldham.  It's frivolous and fun with pretty pastels and girly shapes - get ready to pin.

French actress and style icon Clemence Poesy in Glamour UK editorial

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16 May 2014

LE DOME DU MARAIS

I stumbled across Le Dôme du Marais in the north Marais district one afternoon in December and was drawn in by the restaurant's font outside.  This happens often.  I'm a sucker for a well-designed venue and it looked like a considered font, which often means the interiors are carefully thought out and attention has been paid to design too, so fingers crossed, one assumes the menu as well.  Working in this backwards way, food sometimes disappoints and restaurants can be style over substance, but Le Dôme doesn't - the cuisine tastes as good as the place looks; I went four times when I was in Paris.

Le Dome du Marais restaurant in Paris

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FRIDAY'S FFFFOUND: LIPSTICK KISSES

Different lipstick kisses
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12 May 2014

GINGHAM SHIRT DRESS

Following on from the post about gingham taking over the Balmain catwalk, this checked shirt dress from Boden is the perfect incarnation of the country print, with a fifties-style nipped in waist tied with a bow and full flared skirt.  I'll be picking it up for summer as an early birthday treat - but which colour?

Boden gingham shirt dress
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11 May 2014

TOPSHOP NAILS

I picked up the pale nude Ethereal nail varnish along with blood red Lacquered and neon pink High Voltage from Topshop the other day - I chose the bright pink one for my best bud as part of her birthday gift but then got one for me too and two others...  I'm the worst at buying presents.

Topshop Ethereal nude nail varnish

Topshop nail varnishes are pretty good for the price and they give solid, thick coverage.  I like the beige-y Mannequin nail polish everyone was given at the Topshop Unique LFW show as it matches my skin colour perfectly - which is great because it's hard to get the right shade - but this elegant colour with a hint of lilac is a nice, fresh change for spring.

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10 May 2014

KATE SPADE SAMPLE SALE

I've been going to several sample sales every year since I moved to London nine years ago and the Kate Spade one this week was undoubtedly the best I've ever seen.  It was across two rainy days and I spent my lunch break on the final day stood in the queue outside the Music Room (where most of the big sales are) for 40 minutes before finally being let loose inside.

Kate Spade London sample sale

The selection was vast (and all bright, feminine and cheerful, as you'd expect) and the prices incredible with over 75% off - here's what I picked up...

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9 May 2014

FRIDAY'S FFFFOUND: BRIGITTE BARDOT

Vintage black and white photo of Brigitte Bardot reading
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8 May 2014

SWEET VALLEY HIGH

The Guardian recently ran a great school sports-inspired photoshoot with a hazy, vintage 70s feel, featuring neoprene, sports socks, kilts, Stan Smiths and sporty bodysuits. Photographed by Jon Gorrigan and styled by Priscilla Kwateng, with Beth at Select and Nicole at Tess Models.

Vintage style sports luxe photoshoot
Rag & Bone v-neck jumpers, John Smedley roll-neck jumpers, Iceberg skirt,
Salvatore Ferragamo skirt and Cutler And Gross sunglasses

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7 May 2014

NAVY BLUE ADDICT

I have more blue dresses than you can shake a stick at.  My colleague in Paris first alerted me to it when browsing sale items in Galeries Lafayette in January ("no, you don't need another blue dress") and when I moved back to London and took the rest of my wardrobe out of storage, I realised I had about 20.  Still, if it ain't broke, don't fix it - navy blue is one of my favourite colours and I prefer dresses to separates, so here's the latest navy blue dress to add to my collection.  

London fashion blogger Emma Louise Layla in navy blue off the shoulder Dorothy Perkins dress

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2 May 2014

FRIDAY'S FFFFOUND: NORFOLK

Norfolk countryside
Another long weekend.  Huzzah.  I'll be cycling around the Norfolk countryside
and doing my first sportive of the year on Monday. Have a good one!
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