TLC Staycation: Daylesford Farm with Bentley

IMG_8503.jpg

I couldn’t actually believe my luck when Bentley asked if I wanted to take one of their first ever SUV’s for a spin in the countryside… And neither could my Father, who’s excitement when the Bentayga arrived on his doorstop was wildly contagious (even my one-year old nephew Zac was clapping!) The timing could not have been better; My sister was over visiting from NYC with her family, and my parents were over from Kenya, so a TLC Staycation to the countryside was clearly in order…

IMG_8524.jpg
IMG_8522.jpg

We all know that when it comes to the British countryside, you struggle to pick a more picturesque area to visit than the Cotswolds, which is only an easy ninety mins outside of London. I had been wanting to stay at Daylesford Farm for many moons, and it just so happens that one of their beautifully chic converted farmhouses, The Wood House, has three bedrooms and could fit all the fam (providing I shared a room and bed with my jet-lagged, four-year old niece Willow… and if you watched my Instastories from that week, you’ll know just how that went…!)

IMG_8182.jpg
IMG_7901.jpg

Retaining many of their original features, the self-catered cottages are just a minute’s walk from the iconic Daylesford Farm Shop, restaurant, café and Bamford Haybarn Spa, and really allow you the chance to disconnect, relax, sleep (if not sharing a bed with a jet-lagged, singing niece) and enjoy some lovely family time and country air.

IMG_8173.jpg
IMG_8176.jpg
IMG_8633.JPG
IMG_8177.jpg

On arrival we received a generous welcome pack which included Daylesford tea, coffee, sugar, Daylesford red wine, gin and a selection of savory treats. The fridge was stocked with Daylesford Organic milk, butter and eggs, fresh bread from the bakery and chilled bottles of Daylesford rosé (my favourite) and white wine. Gorgeous fresh flowers were also left for us in the kitchen, and the bathrooms all had miniature Bamford products… All heavenly touches.

IMG_8376.jpg
IMG_8184.jpg
IMG_7821.jpg
Facetune_26-04-2019-11-22-42.jpg

Had we stayed longer, we definitely would have enrolled in some of the cookery classes and floristry workshops, but we were more than occupied with our dreamy treatments at the Bamford Haybarn Spa (I fell utterly in love with the Bamford products, and subsequently bought both the Refining Exfoliator and Balancing Tonic used during my facial) and… oh yeah, eating, because my sweet Lord, the fooooood...!

0bc816ef-4438-4226-ad66-37b245dbaebb.jpg
IMG_8631.JPG

Daylesford is one of the most pioneering farms in the UK and Carole Bamford has won more than 60 national and international awards for its delicious food and sustainable practices. The farm grows over 300 varieties of seasonal organic fruit, vegetables and herbs, and we bought a lot of their delicious soups, jams and chutneys to take over, having really enjoyed them during our stay.

IMG_7885.jpg

Driving the Bentayga to Gloucestershire was a total joy – not only is it clearly stylish and a real eye-turner, but it is so, so comfortable and smooth to drive. It was also great to have with us on the farm, as we could zip around the muddy terrain confidently, visiting both all the new born baby lambs and my old school friend, Leonora Bamford who lives nearby.

After two wonderful nights we packed half the Farm Shop’s produce into the boot, to reluctantly head home, and yes, I allowed (lol) my (chomping at the bit) Father to drive the Bentayga back. We’ll be back Daylesford (ummmm, in the Bentayga, please Bentley? Pretty please?!)

IMG_8167.jpg
IMG_7808.JPG

In Partnership with Bentley

The London Chatter was kindly hosted by Daylesford

Hello There: Farleigh io

_DSC0196 edited.jpg

Given our acute awareness of how the linear fashion model of buying, wearing and quickly discarding clothes so negatively impacts both people and planet, there is an increased demand from customers for greater transparency in the fashion supply chain. I for one, am really making a more conscious effort to buy from, and champion ethical and sustainable British designers, and one such brand that has recently come on to my radar, happily just in time for the summer, is Farleigh io, and their stunning ready-to-wear collection of hand-drawn printed mini’s and maxi dresses.

_DSC0192.jpg

Created for free-spirited women of all ages and sizes, each of Farleigh io’s ethically made, romantic designs look just as great with heels or wedges at a wedding, as they do with a pair of Veja trainers at a festival.

_DSC0197 edited.jpg

Brilliantly, Farleigh io doesn’t believe in large seasonal drops, instead choosing to slowly add one new design to her beautiful collection each month, with the aim of you treasuring that considered purchase for a long time. The dresses are not only brought to life by local London seamstresses and pattern printers, but also, for every design sold, a tree is planted in Zambia to help offset any carbon emissions made during its creation… Aaaaall the wonderful sunshine feels!

Wear With…

_DSC0198 edited.jpg

Wearing: Farleigh io’s Hazel Dress

Featuring: Puffin the Pup

Smear Fear... #SilentNoMore

64282029-081A-4656-80B5-F881883E952D.JPG

I was recently made aware that cervical screenings in the UK are at their lowest levels in two decades, especially across London, with one in three British women not attending their screening tests because they find them embarrassing. I was therefore, in total awe of my friend, and Lady Garden Foundation co-founder, Chloe Delevingne, for having her own cervical smear test on live television earlier this year, in a bid to combat the stigma around getting checked.

As cervical cancer is the most common cancer in women under thirty-five, its worth remembering that although smear tests are always pretty damn uncomfortable, they also last less than five minutes, are required only once every three years, and also save around 4,500 lives each year through early detection... Now that’s worth talking openly about! If you’ve been putting yours off, practice some ultimate self-care and book one in tomorrow morning… 💗 #SilentNoMore

I’m wearing my Tabitha Webb x Lady Garden Foundation silk blouse which helped raise vital funds towards the Royal Marsden’s ground-breaking research into gynaecological cancers... Available upon request.

75505023-FD8A-4CC2-A258-3924F63746DE.JPG

OOTD: 08.05.19

282A0591.jpg

We had such high hopes after that scorcher of a Bank Holiday last month, but annoyingly, ever since, my newly packed away winter clothes are one by one returning at pace, and I’ve intermittently had the heating back on! HOWEVER, these gloomy mornings and random downpours shall not rain on my parade or ruin my lewwwk – mainly thanks to this ALEXACHUNG vinyl hooded trench coat.

282A0614.jpg
282A0581.jpg

Waterproofing and insulation aside, I love the pale blue colour of this trench, which can be worn over separates or even styled as a dress (like it was on the runway), and it has a real retro feel to it, which I love.

I paired the trench with a Maje snake print mini skirt (I know, I’m usually a leopard lass through and through, but this chic skirt unsurprisingly slithered its way happily into my wardrobe), a sky-blue Jacquemus ribbed-knit top and some white ankle boots, the perfect transitional accompaniment for any season. This particular pair of much loved and worn boots are pretty old, but there are still some great options available, and I will pop some of my favourite alternatives below. I also recently discovered Sarah and Sebastian, ethical jewellers from Sydney, and I love their gorgeously delicate gold vermeil, petal-shaped Rosa pendants.

282A0624.jpg

SHOP TLC’S LOOK…

And now, EVERYBODY…

Russell and Bromley SS'19 Edit

Image23.jpg

It was 2009 and Sienna, still at the top of her boho game, was wearing a pair of Russell and Bromley slouchy, studded brown suede biker boots with everything from skinny jeans to floaty dresses... And we ALL wanted a pair. The boots sold out three times before I finally managed to get my lil’mitts on a pair, but they were well and truly worth the wait. This was my first introduction to the much-loved British brand, and similar to Russell and Bromley’s other classic styles, all known for their famed Italian craftsmanship, my boots were seriously hardwearing, accessibly stylish and incredibly versatile… I wore them for years.

With important conversations currently happening within the fashion industry, in regard to our planet, I feel we should all now be far more conscious with our clothing consumption, and make sure each item we purchase is one we intend to wear a lot and for a long time. This is why I was particularly excited to partner with Russell and Bromley and share with you some of my favourite styles from their current SS’19 collection, because I really believe their classic styles, however fashionable, have real wardrobe longevity.

Image6.jpg
Image2.jpg

Several of the new designs caught my eye, and I love the chic caramel tones which flow through the collection, and the laser-cut bucket handbags really stand out. I eventually decided however, that the Trickle Sandals, the Impulse Courts and the Rafferty bag were my must-haves for when the sunshine finally puts his hat back on, and choices that will be just as useful this summer, as the next.

Image1.jpg
Image3.jpg

I was immediately drawn to the wonderfully chic mule style leather Trickle Sandals, with their decorative ring trim. This classic tan style will easily take me from day to night in the city this Summer, yet also making for the perfect holiday companions. Unlike many other on-trend summer shoes available on the high street, I feel that this particular pair of slides are also a real investment, as year in and year out, this iconic shape will never go out of style.

Image7.jpg
Image8.jpg

The Rafferty, to me, screams summer. Crafted from luxurious natural raffia fabric, this practical, and surprisingly affordable, top-handled ‘grab bag’ will be paired with both my floaty summer dresses, and linen trousers alike; a real sunny, everyday staple.

Image9.jpg

The other pair of stylish, yet investment-worthy, shoes I am eager to wear on the upcoming (we hope!) sunnier days, are the Impulse sling back courts. There is something both gorgeously nostalgic about this style, with their brown crocodile printed leather, yet also contemporary, with their more modern, covered block heel. Perfect for work, and my smarter meetings, these flattering shoes can be worn with both dresses and trousers, well into October (before my ankles go back into hibernation…)

Image11.jpg

In Partnership with Russell and Bromley

Photography: Joseph Galvin

Hair and Make Up: Secret Spa London

Clothing: Chinti and Parker

Image22.jpg

Earth Day 2019

57882588_2315583595194556_4908955651469737984_o.jpg

We are amidst the largest period of species extinction in the last 60 million years. Shocking, in the last 50 years alone, the populations of all mammals, birds, reptiles and fish have fallen by an average of 60%…

With today being Earth Day, I thought I might talk a little more about some of my long legged friends back in Kenya. What many people don’t know, is that the wild animals living around the Safari Collection’s famous Giraffe Manor hotel are part of the African Fund for Endangered Wildlife’s vital breeding programme for the Rothschild Giraffe, one of the three sub-species of giraffe found in Kenya. All nine sub-species of giraffe across Africa are fighting a ‘silent extinction,’ being overshadowed in the press by other endangered animals. There are approx 500,000 wild elephant left in Africa for instance, whilst there are only 90,000 giraffe!!!! I was so shocked and saddened to hear this statistic. Similar to elephant, giraffe populations have suffered dramatically from illegal hunting, habitat loss and human/wildlife conflict, and the Rothschild, in particular, have really struggled.

However, due in big part to the amazing work of the AFEW, the Rothschild population in Kenya has increased from 80 to 800 individuals in the last 30 years, with 50 of those giraffe being the babies of breeding pairs reintroduced back into the wild from the Manor’s neighbouring Giraffe Centre. My heart hurts at the thought of a world without these beautiful long lashed and even longer legged giants, and the moments spent with them are never lost on me

A8E338D1-CDCD-4F71-8158-E7DAB34175FC.JPG

“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make...” Dr. Jane Goodall.

In my opinion, every damn day should be Earth Day... 🌍 #ExtinctionIsForever

B6AB7633-EE99-4892-8188-E54E11480222.JPG

Fake It Till You Make It with Weekday

Image1.jpg

With summer on its merry way (we hope), we are now slowly beginning to see more sunny digital and printed campaigns released, all enticing us to make our new season purchases, so we too can be as happy and tanned as the models and celebrities featured.  The majority of these alluring Spring/Summer campaigns are obviously shot long ahead of time, during the British Winter, and shot at great expense in faraway, infinitely more exotic locations.

Founded in 2002, Weekday, a Swedish denim and fashion brand influenced by youth culture and street style, have decided to be humorously transparent when it comes to communicating their own sunglasses campaign this year.  Instead of flying to the other side of the world to capture the essence of summer, the Weekday marketing team decided to shoot their models under some bright lights, in front of some beachy backdrops. Just as the viewer is lured into the inauthentic summer vibe, the camera is pulled back to reveal the ‘truth in advertising;’ our Expectation vs. Reality.

Aside from Brexit, another hot topic which has caused in-depth discussion over the last year, is centred around the authenticity of the advertising we consume on a daily basis, especially via social media. The actuality, and the ‘behind the scenes,’ of pretty much every heavily filtered, perfectly poised picture we absorb on Instagram in particular, are far removed from what we are presented with, and as such, I found creating my own Expectation vs. Reality imagery in support of this Weekday campaign, really refreshing and relevant.

Amidst great friends in Los Angeles, surrounded by palm trees and booming music, I enjoying cocktails in the hottest sunshine, wearing slim lilac Weekday Cateye Sunglasses and some complimentary lilac Weekday cords and blouse – Such a smiley, memorable day…

Whereas, actually, I was standing outside a London pub, on a typically chilly day, alone.  At least I had my mixture of two fruit juices (Pina NOlada?!) and cheese and onion crisps… All the glamour, clearly, and not quite the summer-vibes I had led initially encouraged you to believe.

Image5-2.jpg
Image8-2.jpg
Image6-2.jpg

Similarly, here I am in Cuba, enjoying some much-needed shade at an exotic fruit-stall, wearing my favourite Weekday Sail Cateye Sunglasses and Weekday swimsuit

Image10.jpg
Image9.jpg

Which of course, then reveals me actually standing by a Ladbroke Grove London market stall, feeling wildly underdressed, and beyond nippy on yet another grey day… Well, you gotta’fake it, till you make it!

Image13-2.jpg
Image11-2.jpg
Image12-2.jpg

Shop TLC’s Look…

Image7-001.jpg

In Partnership with Weekday and ShopStyle

Photography: Joseph Galvin

Hair: Taylor Taylor London

March Against Extinction 2019

57059884_2303070736445842_6656924714360897536_n.jpg

A few years ago, whilst waiting for my cab at LAX, I witnessed a group of American men, pushing their suitcases and firearms, being welcomed home by their wives and children like heroes, as they excitedly regaled stories of how many lions they had each shot on their (canned) hunting trip to South Africa... My heart utterly broke.

How are conservationists to win the fight against illegal poaching, exhaustively educating the world with what little time we have left, that Africa’s most endangered animals, in their ever dwindling numbers, are #WorthMoreAlive, and that their mounted body parts are not symbols of wealth and prosperity - if on the other hand, the blood-thirsty elite are legally allowed to kill and display severed body parts of the exact same animals back in their homes, as a sign of their own ‘power’ and ‘prestige’ (or more likely, as I see it, as a sign of their small...)

In total, some 1.7 million wildlife trophies were legally traded between nations between 2004-2014, 200,000 of them from endangered species.

D4DVK8XWwAEHbnf.jpg

This was why, yesterday, I joined the Global #MarchAgainstExtinction to deliver an open letter signed by 175,000 people (including my faves, Jane Goodall and Born Free Foundation’s Virginia McKenna to Theresa May at 10 Downing Street, asking the British Government to take urgent action to ban the import of hunting trophies to the U.K, and to support efforts internationally to end this gruesome trade once and for all.

We also called upon the CoP delegates to: support the proposal to up-list elephants to Appendix I, reject the proposal from several southern African countries to re-open ivory trade, and reject the proposal to allow trade in the Southern White Rhino.

Without maximum protections by the global community and CITES, elephants, rhinos, lions, giraffes and all endangered megafauna face certain extinction in the wild.

D4Dbx47XkAAkSmV.jpg

Above: Outside 10 Downing Street with actor and animal rights activist Peter Egan, who I haven’t seen Peter since co-starrrrring in the 2007 British comedy, ‘Death at a Funeral.’

(*Kidding, I literally had one line in the entire film...)

It was an honour to stand and be counted alongside so many committed and passionate voices for endangered animals yesterday in London, whilst so many did the same thing back in my home town, Nairobi, Kenya.

A Spring in my Step with CHARLES & KEITH

Sponsored by CHARLES & KEITH and ShopStyle

282A9787-001.jpg

I first discovered the Singapore-based accessories label CHARLES & KEITH earlier this year. Whilst scouring through street style pictures from NYFW in February, I noticed some of my favourite Scandi bloggers and other Insta-favourites swinging the same stylish pistachio-green tote around Manhattan, and I knew I had to move quick before it sold out (*it already was!) I was however, really happy to learn upon further investigation, that CHARLES & KEITH had not only just launched in the UK, but also, were brilliantly affordable… Can I get a ‘whoop, whoop?!’

CHARLES & KEITH launched in 1996, specialising in shoes, but has since expanded with a covetable collection of handbags, jewellery and sunglasses, with an abundance of ever-updating styles to suit one and all. Having had an in-depth perusal of their website (I call it ‘research…’) I found amongst the varying colours and patterns, some gorgeous new Spring styles I couldn’t resist.

282A9917-001.jpg

I find getting a couple of new statement accessories to be the simplest and most purse-friendly way to refresh and brighten up my existing outfits, and with warmer weather on the horizon, I’m thrilled to have found these CHARLES & KEITH wardrobe additions giving me the literal Spring in my step I’ve been looking for…

282A9603-001.jpg

I have always been a massive fan of wearing bulky sling-backs (otherwise known as ‘Man Repellers’) and these on-trend raffia versions from CHARLES & KEITH available in both Black and Blush were both added to basket at first sight. They are so comfortable and give a certain weight to my more feminine and quirkier Spring outfits.

These chic Dark Green and Blush Fringe Sliders (similar here) look far more expensive than they are, and will give me the exact day to night Spring in my step I will soon be needing. I also couldn’t resist the sling-back’s matching weave tote bag… Welllll, it would be rude not to (plus, it fits my laptop, which is a huge bonus!)

282A0036-001.jpg

I love this Petal Fold Bucket Bag as there was something of the Safari Chic about it (which is obviously something that will always appeal to me… ‘You can take the girl out of Africa…’) and it was clearly calling out to be paired with some of my wild prints. For a more Spring/Summer vibe, the bag is also available in a lovely Buttercup Yellow.

282A9836-001.jpg

Shop TLC’s Look…

In collaboration with CHARLES & KEITH and SHOPSTYLE

Photography: Frances Davison

Hair: Taylor Taylor London

Nails: Sophie Gass