UPDATE: TLCxAuree: The Tembo Collection

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Last week, on World Elephant Day, Auree Jewellery and I celebrated reaching quite an exciting and wonderfully unexpected milestone...

Influenced by my Kenyan roots, the seven Masai bead inspired Tembo Charity Bracelets from my collaboration with Auree Jewellery have collectively raised £25,000 (!!!) which has been donated to For Rangers, with a giant bow on it.

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I’m so proud that 100% of the profits from our collection went towards supporting the brave heroes across Africa risking their lives every day to protect our endangered wildlife, and so grateful to have this platform (my own ‘digital soapbox!’) to share the causes I feel so passionately about.  

Thank you to everyone who bought one (or two, or three...) of the Satao, Pembe or Shina bracelets… You will have directly contributed towards the fight against elephant poaching, and the extinction of this iconic, important animal. 

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Buy To Give:  Head to Auree Jewellery to secure one of the last few bracelets... 

#TLCxAuree

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OOTD: 30.04.18

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I read in the paper yesterday that this week our capital looks set to be ‘battered by torrential rain and gales,’ with warnings of potential flooding. Sooooo, that’s a pretty big ‘no’ to Spring then, right?!  At a time where I should be perusing the pastels in my wardrobe, I’m leaning heavily back towards the cashmere. 

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One colour I particularly feel weathers (for want of a better word) this unpredictable time of year well, is olive.  Olive is one of the most versatile colours you can wear, being both cool and casual, whilst also being a while lot more forgiving than the predictable summer khaki options that are currently available en masse on every one of our high streets.

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This show stopper of a trench coat is by the wonderfully talented Huishan Zhang, who I have long been a huge fan of.  Combining both his Eastern heritage and Western design skills, the coat’s olive scallops are both powerful, yet pretty.

Worn with my high-waisted/wide-legged H&M black trousers, stripey Day Birger turtle neck (yup, back to those… Brrrrr…), my Jerome Dreyfuss circular bag, my Swedish Hasbeen’s clogs and my And Other Stories Sunglasses (a girl can hope…!) I am feeling as Springy as I possibly can right now!  Even if I’m not loving this weather, this coat?! Olive you longtime…

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Photography:  Joseph Galvin

Hair:  Taylor Taylor London

Nails:  Sophie Gass

Uzma Bozai's Africa Collection (Donating 10% to For Rangers)

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I’m always one for mixing a casual tee with something smarter, and the minute it gets chillier the tee is replaced with a sweatshirt. Never out of style, and always comfortable (not something regularly associated with fashion, let’s be honest!) the sweatshirt is a great way to dress down and bring a little casual-cool to your favourite pair of velvet or leather trousers, or maxi and pencil skirts.  I was therefore, thrilled to discover Uzma Bozai’s namesake brand, my now go-to for colourful, bold and intricately embellished sweatshirts. 

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This season, Uzma Bozai have released a collection of sweatshirts inspired by Kenya’s beautiful Masai Mara, featuring hand-beaded tribal art, wild animals and statement slogans derived from African proverbs.  Not only is the Africa Collection ultra wearable and all things hella cool cat, but after learning about For Rangers and their incredible work through following me on Instagram, Uzma Bozai will be donating 10% from each Africa sweatshirt to the cause until Christmas. 

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I have supported For Rangers, a campaign in conjunction with Tusk, all year with Auree Jewellery by donating to them the profits of our Tembo Bracelet collaboration

The project was started by friends of mine back in Kenya, a dedicated group of individuals, with no overheads or running costs, who raise money for the welfare of rangers on the frontline of this battle to save elephants by undertaking insane feats to help raise money to support them.  Over the last two years, the group have completed, amongst many others, the 'Marathon de Sables' across the Sahara Desert, the ‘Beyond The Ultimate’ Jungle Run in Peru, and last week, the ‘Desert Ultra’ across 250km of Namibia. Legends, or what?! 

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Please consider buying a sweatshirt or bracelet this Christmas, and supporting For Rangers and the brave heroes on the front line of the battle to save Africa's endangered wildlife.

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Read my interview with Uzma Bozai HERE

Photography: Frances Davison

Hair: Taylor Taylor London

FitFlop x Habitat for Humanity

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I moved to my flat in Notting Hill three years ago, after a short but tumultuous period of bouncing around from house to flat, and at one point, hotel room to friend’s sofas. Although still an ongoing process, slowly making this little one-bedroom flat, with its creaky black floor boards and New York loft style exposed brick and sky lights, my own, has been a total joy. Saving up for things has taken time, and in some cases, some extreme willpower (fixing windows over buying new shoes, for instance, takes the strength of an ox…!) and the arrival of my long-lusted after jade velvet sofa of dreeeeeams this month, just in time for my impending hibernation, has been a triumph.

My bathroom is covered in Matthew Williamson for Osborne and Little butterfly wallpaper, my wardrobe, in House of Hackney colobus monkeys, and Jo Malone candles and photographs of my beloved niece Safari Willow and nephew Zac cover most of the surfaces. Monkey book ends, giant coral prints, a Rosanna Lonsdale zebra lamp, and my framed Guy Malin leopard balloon photograph all remind me of where I’m from in Africa.  Stepping into my flat after a crazy day whizzing around London, throwing off my boots, popping on my slippers and attacking some Jaffa Cakes, makes me feel calm, cosy, and safe…

Basically, I feel at home. 

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I know, the word LUCKY springs to mind. Especially when one in five people across the world are living in slums or substandard housing, propelling them into a grinding cycle of poverty. When someone lacks a home, their health, well-being, educational prospects and ability to earn a living all become affected. 

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With this in mind, FitFlop are supporting Habitat for Humanity this year, a global non-profit organisation which helps build homes for families in need around the world, offering them strength, stability and self-reliance through much-needed shelter. 20% from each purchase of a pair of FitFlop House Slippers, in all their cloud-like double shearling and fluffy pom pom glory, is made to Habitat for Humanity

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Since 1976, Habitat for Humanity has worked tirelessly to provide access to decent housing for families in over 70 countries. From building homes and providing villages with clean drinking water, to natural disaster relief and micro-finance, this organisation have amazingly helped over 10 million people worldwide.

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The FitFlop House Slippers are available in two different colour ways, and I was immediately drawn to the charcoal grey pair with midnight blue pom poms. Not only have I practically not taken them off, but several of my friends have already gone and bought themselves a pair after seeing mine. With Christmas fast approaching, these make the perfect ‘Buy to Give’ present… Even if that present miiiight be to yourself… Hey, no one’s judging here! 

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Oh, and if that wasn’t enough, this pair of beyond comfortable, limited edition LOVE Slippers also see 20% from each sale go to support Habitat for Humanity’s life-changing work. What’s not to LOOOOOOVE, huh?!

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 “At FitFlop, people put their hearts and souls into making the world’s best ergonomic footwear, because they believe that if you want to live an inspired life, you’ve got to start with a great foundation.  And while a great pair of shoes will improve your life, a safe decent home is the ultimate foundation.” 

Marcia Kilgore, Founder of FitFlop.

 

“We’re really excited to be partnering with FitFlop on this venture. Both of our organisations are passionate about making a sustainable difference and FitFlop’s vision for solid foundations aligns perfectly with ours.”

Naomi Rothwell, Habitat for Humanity GB Corporate Partnerships Manager

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In collaboration with FitFlop

Photography: Francis Davison

Hair and Makeup: Secret Spa

#FITFLOPxHABITATFORHUMANITY 

Standing Up For Elephants

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Amidst huge outcry, U.S President Donald Trump has postponed his administration’s decision to reverse the ban on importing big-game trophies from Zimbabwe and Zambia, until further review....

There has been huge progress made over the last few years in reducing the demand for ivory, and prices have fallen in China by more than 75%. It would be hugely damaging for the U.S government to send a message to the world, that the proud displaying of endangered body parts is OK.  Pro-hunting, ‘pay to slay’ lobbyists will be putting the American government under huge pressure during this legislation lull, so please don’t now go silent - our voices, together, are clearly being heard! STAND UP FOR ELEPHANTS!! 

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Please consider buying a Tembo Charity Bracelet from my collaboration with Auree Jewellery as Christmas presents for your loved ones... 100% of the profit from our Masai bead inspired collection (RRP. £50.00 - £140.00) goes to For Rangers, who support the heroes risking heir lives daily to protect these iconic animals. See more information about this collaboration HERE.

This 100% cotton, limited edition 'STOP IVORY TRADE NOW' t'shirt, designed by Katharine Hamnett, sees its proceeds benefit Save The Elephants. (RRP. £19.00)

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Photographs: Lorna Luxe

OMEGA 'Her Time' Exhibition, Paris

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There are invitations, and then there are INVITATIONS.  Last month I visited Paris with OMEGA for the latter. With an itinerary that included meeting supermodel (and all round superhuman) Cindy Crawford, a spoiling stay at Le Meurice, a sunset cruise down the Seine for dinner, and an opulent party celebrating the ‘Her Time’ exhibition where the latest brand ambassadors were to be revealed had this girl, someone who let's not forget, hasn’t moved quicker than a strut since the mid 90’s, sprinting to catch the Eurostar!!

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OMEGA is recognised as one of the greatest watch brands all over the world (and even outside of it, thanks to their buddies at NASA), and since 1848, this Swiss brand has continuously redefined watchmaking, with their ground breaking and stylish watches accessorising the most glamourous and adventurous of wrists, from Olympians to presidents, and even Bond. James Bond.

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It was wonderful to meet with the eye-poppingly beautiful Cindy Crawford at the Paris Peninsula (see my hotel review here) ahead of the party, and hear her talk so passionately about her relationship with the brand, one she quipped, she’d been in a marriage with longer than the one with her husband.  Cindy joined the OMEGA family in 1995, and has relished the experiences she has had with them, specifically visiting Peru to see first hand the amazing eye surgeries OMEGA funds through their charity partner Orbis International, a non-profit non-government organization of doctors who volunteer their free time to fly around the world providing life changing eye surgeries and training local doctors.  Cindy revealed she didn’t have a stand out favourite style of OMEGA as she feels attached to all her watches, and like bracelets, she likes to change up her watch style according to her outfit and mood, however, she did say she felt very connected to the Constellation design.

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Above:  Here’s a great idea Kelly; How about standing next to Cindy Crawford for a photo whilst wearing flats that resemble penguin feet? Not enough filters in the goddang world…!

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Above:  Le Room Service (F.Y.I. My favourite French word? Pamplemousse.)

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Above: TIME to party with OMEGA

Despite it BUCKETING it down that evening, the OMEGA Her Time exhibition and the party, held in the historic Hôtel de Sully’s courtyard, was just as stylish as you might expect, complete with many a handsome garçon holding a smart parapluie to guide you in between the differing displays.  After exploring the selection of OMEGA’s most famous and exquisite women’s watch designs, the company’s charming President and CEO Raynald Aeschlimann introduced Cindy and the brand’s newest ambassadors onto the stage; Her model children, Presley Gerber and (girl du jour) Kaia Gerber

To celebrate the family’s sponsorship, a series of black and white family portraits of the beyond genetically blessed Gerber family, taken by renown Peter Lindberg, were presented (below). With legacy, history and family being at the core of OMEGA’s brand ethos, there couldn’t have been a more fitting reveal.  

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Below:  After the After Party... Putting the French into French Fry back at Le Meurice

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At a time where so many of us are leaning so heavily towards the digital, and can so easily read the time on our phones, there is something so reassuring and special about wearing a traditional watch, and I really enjoyed borrowing an OMEGA watch in Paris and for the week that followed, back in London-Town... 

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In collaboration with OMEGA

London Photography:  Frances Davison

London Hair: Taylor Taylor London

Nails: Swanky London

Watch More Here...

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Tried and Tested: Over-The-Knee Boots with Selfridges (Ad)

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I must admit, rightly or wrongly, I have always associated wearing over-the-knee boots with being overtly sexual and Cabaret’esq, so have steered away from them, given ‘sexy’ is not really my go-to style.  In fact, I’d always rather a compliment over some eclectic ensemble I was wearing from a stylish woman than a wolf whistle or a manly leer, any day.  An ex (clearly!) boyfriend once told me my look was ‘moooore demure than sexy,’ and despite the intentions of his remark, I was incredibly appreciative!!  Give me Audrey Hepburn, Natalie Portman or even bloomin’Jane Austen over a Kardashian any day!  HOWEVER, my head was turned last Winter when I saw a few bloggers I know, and supermodels I don’t, wearing over-the-knee boots with dark jeans and it looked… well, kinda chic!  SO… Never one to not try something new, I decided to grab a pair from Selfridges and give them a wee whirl, making sure to adapt them to my own style, and not the other way around.  I, yes I, was going to wear these boots, they were not going wear me!

Let’s do this...

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Firstly, I decided to pair some suede Carvela Sammy over-the-knee boots with some skinny, dark Diesel jeans and an oversize woolly jumper from Alexa by Alexa Chung (a beloved ambassador of the all things anti-sexy, in her ruffles and glittery flats!) and a Manu Atelier suede bag.  By pairing the boots with these winter textures, they instantly became softened and far more appropriate for daytime.  In fact, with the addition of my sharp Jess Collett Milliner fedora, the overall look felt pretty kick ass!  Yup, I definitely could hear some Beyonce playing in my head with each step (*finger snap, hair swish…)

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For my second outfit, I paired the Carvela over-the-knee boots with a zippered Kitri shirt dress and the dinkiest of current It Bags, a Simon Miller Bonsai Bag.  I definitely think this is the kind of a look I would wear to Fashion Week, and although with certain wider strides, there were some good old fashioned thighs on display, the long sleeves, and length of dress counteracted any unwarranted incitement on the streets!

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In summation, I still think these over-the-knee boots are pretty sexy, but not in the original, possibly negative way I had first imagined.  With the right, balanced outfit, these boots actually make you feel pretty damn empowered too.  Demurely sexy, some might say...! 

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In collaboration with Selfridges

Photography: Francis Davison

Hair:  Taylor Taylor London

Nails:  Sophie Gass

#OOTD: 21.07.17

Just as florals are synonymous with Spring (yes, we know, ground-breaking…), fruit goes hand in hand with the summer. The minute the sunshine puts his hat on, and the rosé has been lined up, we all seem to reach for our most zesty ensembles and juicy accessories.

Pineapples are usually our first fashion go-to, with lemons not far behind (so very D&G), and then there are cherries. Ripe and ruby red, there will always be something a little bit more sexy and a little bit more playful about this fruity print, and my faves Chinti and Parker have provided this one of our fashion five a day in droves this season.

I’m a massive fan of Chinti and Parker’s whimsical cashmere designs, and recently I was treated to the most GAWGEOUS Ivory Cherry Silk Shirt (RRP. £275.00) which has fast become one of the most useful items in my wardrobe; Cool when its hot, warm when it cool - but always lots of fun!  The shirt also has matching pyjama style trousers if you’re feeling that extra bit fruity.

 

I recently wore the shirt whilst on a #TLCVacation in Nice, staying at Les Roches Rouges. I paired the shirt with my red ASOS skirt, Dolce & Gabanna retro cat eye sunnies and my new favourite shoes; my Drilles.

These unisex, handmade leather espadrilles, created by British fashion journalist Amy Williams, are available in a plethora of chic colours (my favourites being Rio Red and Portobello Pink) are set to be THE shoe of the summer. Get ‘em while you can from Barr and Bass (RRP. £155.00).

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Photographs:  Francis Davison

Nails:  Sophie Gass 

Jewellery:  Auree Jewellery

TLC Vacation: Les Roches Rouges, Saint-Raphael

What a total and utter treat it was to be asked to stay at Hotel Les Roches Rouges during the same month of its opening.  When confronted with the beautiful azure blue sea and the stark white and deep, seductive sienna hues of this modernist, 5* hotel situated in the heart of the Côte d'Azur, the memory of my ungodly wake up call to get to Gatwick Airport simply melted away. The Welcome (and very much welcomed) Cocktail miiiiiight also have played a part in this, to be fair…

Les Roches Rouges is understated luxury at its best.  Low-key but wonderfully luxurious, unlike its well known neighbours, you can enjoy the glamour without the glitz of the French Riviera in peace.

First and foremost, I should mention the view.  The sea crashing against the rocky cliffside, and the hotel’s two swimming pools, one a natural seawater infinity pool, combine to make what I’m sure will soon become the most Instagrammed set up of the summer!  It is like something out of a Slim Aarons photography book, I kid you not.  Exceptional.

Spending a few sun-drenched days splashing in this refreshing water, whilst having a friendly team of Stan Smith clad staff waiting on my every Orangina whim, was le dream!  (Below: In Réard Paris)

My sea-view bedroom was small, but perfectly formed, with a balcony, artesian snacks (think, saucisson and nougat rather than your regular selection of Pringles!) and gorgeous, refillable Le Labo amenities. I mention that they were refillable, because as much as I love sneaking home a bottle or two of travel sized shampoo and conditioner, I love it more when hotels are eco conscious. The minimalist, yet artistic approach to the decoration felt fresh and light, the bed was cloud’esq comfy, and as an additional stylish touch, a gorgeous straw basket was ready and waiting to be used as your beach bag throughout your stay.

There are three bars and two restaurants at Hotel Les Roches Rouges, my favourite being located on the rooftop where I spent my last evening taking in a particularly other worldly sunset. The Provencal cuisine, with all ingredients sourced from local farmers, cheese makers, olive oil producers and beekeepers, is more than complimented by the array of cold, crisp wines offered (another Magnum of rose, anyone?!) I would however, say some English menus would be helpful (#BritAbroad, apologies) and perhaps a few more creative Vegetarian options. 

Above:  My blogger friends wearing their #TLCxAuree bracelets.  Every purchase from my and Auree Jewellery's Masai inspired Tembo Collection sees 100% of profits donated to For Rangers, supporting those risking their lives daily to protect Africa's wildlife. (RRP. £50.00-£140.00)

By day, if unwinding with a book, cocktail in hand lounging doesn’t suit (who even are you?)  you can busy yourself with some kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, table tennis, yoga cooking classes or a visit to a nearby, picturesque village for a wander.  In the evenings, there is live music (Gypsy, Cuban, acoustic folk rock) and cosy, open air cinema nights.  After a gorgeous massage, I can also certainly recommend a visit to the spa, you know, in the unlikely event that you just weren’t feeling relaxed enough…!

TLC ON TOUR... COTE D'AZUR SUITCASE:

(Click on the items below for their direct links)

Thank you Les Roches Rouges.

Additional Photography: Emma Horeau

Nails: Sophie Gass

Friday Feathers with Matthew Williamson

There is nothing, nooothing, that can put you in more of a party mood than one of Matthew Williamson’s signature cocktail dresses.  From the intricate, sparkling embellishment, to their ostrich-feather trimmed skirt, these show stopping, conversation starting, razamatazz inducing, form-fitting dresses are unashamedly feminine and oodles fun.  Some of my most frivolous and fanciful nights in London have been spent shimmying around in one of these fancies.  Ohhhh, the stories they could (but thankfully won’t) tell…!

I recently enjoyed the most unashamedly girly morning with the ‘Gown Gang’ playing dress up in Matthew Williamson’s new Belvoir Collection (see more here).  With Brown’s Hotel acting as our lavish host, Charlotte Tilbury’s team on hand to make us look our best, and an army of Jimmy Choo beauties standing to attention, I couldn’t help but try the Matthew’s latest, one-of-a-kind, Rose Lace Feather delight on to share with you.  Friday - Watch out, buddy!

Above:  Wearing the 9ct Gold Satao (RRP. £140.00) and the Silver Shina (RRP. £50.00) bracelets from my Tembo Collection with Auree Jewellery (100% profits of entire collection go to For Rangers and wildlife conservation across Africa - See More Here) and an Assya London Oriental Cross Ring (RRP. £195.00)

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TLC LOVES... Matthew Williamson Feathers

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Photographer:  Moeez Ali

Hair:  Secret Spa

Nails:  Sophie Gass