24 June 2015


I recently discovered a new ethical British fashion brand called Araminta launched by a lovely lady called Gillian Mead in London earlier this year.  I was on the lookout for clothes in light, natural fabrics for our Asia trip last month and fell for this beautiful coral pink dress with flippy hem in 100% cotton jersey.  Not only are the fabrics good quality, but they're organic and recycled.

Araminta coral pink dress on London style blogger Emma Louise Layla - ethical fashion brand

After conducting research touring apparel factories which supply leading high street retailers, she was appalled to see workers without the proper protective clothing in dark, hot rooms using old machinery and inhaling harmful chemicals all day.  Upon her return, Gillian set out to create wearable clothes which don't wear out the world.

23 June 2015


One of my favourite experiences in Hong Kong was walking through all the street markets.  The city is so vibrant but these hustling, bustling streets are even more full on and brimming with life: dense crowds, colourful signs, haggling sellers, bright lights and strong smells, filled with cheap bargains, unusual delicacies, blatant fakes, wonderfully weird Asian products we rarely see in Europe, local specialties and tourist crap (I couldn't resist a gleaming gold plastic maneki-neko waving cat) alongside traditional souvenirs.  Your eyes get tired from scanning the thousands of products jostling for your attention.

Dried fruit and sweets at Hong Kong street market | travel blog

22 June 2015


It's the middle of summer but I'm still eyeing up black dresses.  My favourite pieces from the Gucci SS15 RTW collection were the ones embellished with military buttons and this 60s, mod-inspired black mini dress with shiny silver buttons and chic A-line shape is pretty much perfect.  It's currently 30% off in the Net-A-Porter sale, but I'm waiting for it to go to 50% off (or 60 or 70, please) before I start toying with the idea of adding it to my collection of LBDs.

Gucci Stretch Twill Mini Dress - 60s mod-inspired LBD with military buttons


19 June 2015


French brand Petit Bateau has been making quality cotton T-Shirts and underwear for more than 120 years in their Troyes factory in the Champagne region of France (where I spotted this breton stripe wall; how French).  Karl Lagerfeld sent Claudia Schiffer down the Chanel catwalk at Paris Fashion Week in 1994 wearing a kids PB tee, so the house swiftly followed into womenswear to cater for demand.

London fashion blogger Emma Louise Layla in classic Petit Bateau v-neck tee


Carmen Dell'Orrefice by Norman Parkinson, Vogue UK, 1959
Carmen Dell'Orrefice by Norman Parkinson, Vogue UK, 1959

17 June 2015

Dinner at Kettner's

After sixteen days in Asia we came back craving something other than dim sum, noodles and sushi so went for dinner at one of my favourite restaurants, Kettner's.  The Soho institution is housed in four Grade II listed Georgian townhouses and originally opened in 1867 by Napoleon III's chef Auguste Kettner, attracting celebrated regulars like King Edward VII, Oscar Wilde, Agathe Christie and Bing Crosby over the years.

Kettners Champagne Bar, Soho, London - restaurant blogger


16 June 2015


Come back, cherry blossom! I spent approximately 80% of April and May gazing at all the dreamy flowering Prunus trees. When London explodes into pretty pink and soft white fluttery petals for those fleeting few weeks, spring has arrived: the days are getting longer, trees are getting greener, flowers are in full bloom and it's my favourite time of the year.

Beautiful cherry blossom in London, England - lifestyle blog


15 June 2015


Our home for six days in Hong Kong was the wonderfully luxurious five-star InterContinental at Tsim Sha Tsui. Situated right on the Kowloon waterfront, the hotel overlooks Victoria Harbour and towards the magnificent Hong Kong Island skyline with spectacular panoramic views. It was my first encounter with the city and I fell in love.

Intercontinental Hong Kong | luxury HK hotel, Kowloon Bay hotels | travel blogger


10 June 2015


On our first day in Hong Kong, we spent the afternoon walking around different neighbourhoods, mopping our brows, saying "it's so humid/ we need more water/ how can it be this hot?" etc every five minutes to each other and nipping in and out of stores for the air conditioning.

Fashion blogger Emma Louise Layla in white Dorothy Perkins dress on a busy Hong Kong street

I wore my blue Nike trainers, a simple white Dorothy Perkins dress and ASOS cat eye sunnies.  This is one of HK's many crazy busy streets, near Mong Kok.  I meant to pick up a pair of trainers on nearby Fa Yuen Street (aka Sneaker Street), where dozens of sports shops and stalls sell hundreds of different sneakers from all over the world either very cheaply or tax-free if they're current season, but it didn't happen.  Too much choice, too hot!  Next time.

browse other travel posts and Hong Kong features

Fashion blogger Emma Louise Layla in white Dorothy Perkins dress on a busy Hong Kong street

2 June 2015


Co-ordinates ain't going nowhere. They're not solely for the midriff-bearing Topshop teenage customer (but of course it helps if you have killers abs). This black and blue printed skirt and crop top from Debenhams' own brand Red Herring ticks the co-ords trend box, but also feels a little classic with its 50s floral print and high waisted, full skirt shape.

Red Herring Navy Floral Crop top and Skirt - chic co ords - high street Debenhams fashion
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