Sunday, 16 July 2017


I spent a half atmospheric dark, wet and rainy morning and half dreamy sunny afternoon in Charleston (in Sussex, England) recently, if you are interested in learning about the Bloomsbury set (Vanessa Bell, Duncan Grant etc) and love gardens try and visit one day. It truly is a painters place and the house is pretty amazing with its painted designs, handmade curtains, rugs and ceramics. I caught a glimpse of the Guest room and the dusky pinks will make me want to visit again. The designs and decor in the house overall were revolutionary for that period.

The garden (recreated in the style of how it was) itself has been described as abundant and was overflowing with Hollyhocks (apparently Vanessa Bell's favourite) and giant towering and purple flowering artichokes, fruit trees, zinnias and roses. It was a great deviation of the clipped and prim, 'controlled' gardens that had dominated garden design philosophy in western Europe.

All photos taken by myself. Photos of the interior of the house is not allowed unfortunately,however there are some good guidebooks which can give you a good insight,

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Summer dreaming

Image from Shop Spanish Moss, a Vintage clothing and accessories shop based in the U.S.
This summer in the South East of England has been super hot. Apparently a couple of weeks ago the hottest in 40 years!

My recent months have left me rather jaded, I have had three roles in the past two years and it makes me tired to think about where I will be heading next. But why should it be that way? One shouldn't let life just 'happen' to them? I have been thinking about what I want to do in the medium to long term.A portfolio career is hopefully around the corner.

Although being an accountant is fairly secure I have very little job satisfaction. I have been seriously thinking about working with food, a supper club, styling food and the arts, a curators course is on the cards as well as Moorish Islamic art studies. My recent travels were in Morocco, South of Spain and Portugal (for 2.5 days!!) and I was fascinated by the arts and patterns in the Magreb and preserved from Arab Andalusia in Spain and Portugal. There is a lot of geometry and repeated patterns and I find them beautiful.

I also would like to create a portfolio of vintage clothing studies. I have a great passion for vintage clothing and want to study and document this somehow.

I hope you are having a good summer so far.

Moorish tiles, photo taken at The Palace of Sintra in Portugal, April 2017

Sunday, 7 May 2017


I recently travelled to Lisbon for one day (I know, crazy right? I love being spontaneous) normally April is a rainy month but I was lucky as the sun was out and it was rather warm.

I met a lovely Lady called Noura on a tour of the Alfama district in Lisbon, my iPhone kept playing up so she kindly sent me some of her photos. Lisbon is a beautiful city with character and culture, I hope to travel there again for a longer period of time! 

Saturday, 6 May 2017

Vintage - Shop Spanish Moss

Image copyright- Shop Spanish Moss- from website dated 06/05/2017

One of my favourite online vintage sites is Shop Spanish Moss. Shop Spanish Moss is a US based Vintage clothing and accessorise business which sells quality vintage items which can be special wear, day to day casual wear (amazing vintage tees), boho and for those who like to collect beautiful vintage clothing . Their items sell out super quick. I came across these Pants- Van Lear Rose pants as Shop Spanish Moss calls them and fell for them.  Unfortunately this was sold out, as with nearly all vintage there are no duplicates readily available or without a thorough search.

I thought I would try searching for these pants or at least a similar pair, before trying to desire for vintage can be a little obsessive sometimes. I searched on Esty and came across these below, which looks identical to the Van Lear Rose Pants, but with no belt. The photo above looks like the pants have a dark purple background but that could possibly be the lighting?  Anyway I'm pleased with my searching skills.....It's always worth searching on Esty, Ebay and any other sites for anything that's sold out or snapped up.

Another thing that crossed my mind is that I probably would not have considered looking at the pants on Esty if I had not come across the curated version by Shop Spanish Moss first. Curating and advertising aspirations are powerful tools in the apparel industry.

However it is important that you choose items that are "you" or your aspirations otherwise buying things 'just because' becomes soulless and dare I say depressing, (I have been there).

Etsy shop ReluctantDamsel

Tuesday, 6 September 2016

The dress- floral prints

Image from Rose keyhole dress
I recently told myself that I should stick to classic styles i.e. plain block coloured dresses and tops, however I am increasingly becoming distracted by prints - especially prints on flowy dresses and silk shirts.

This caught my eye when the Topshop newsletter/promotion email came into my inbox, alas I had told myself to ignore these emails as I was working (freelance so allowed to browse!) but actually I have no regrets - this dress seems perfect, it was marketed as a transitional dress- I feel this can be a good staple for many years to come and isn't a throwaway fashion item.

A dark and romantic feminine dress  perfect for layering in Autumn & Winter and also for wearing in other seasons- Thank you Topshop! I'm sure this is a piece to treasure.

I recently have been going through my wardrobe which had clothing going back nearly 12 years and giving good items to my local Cancer Research shop, going forwards I only want to buy items as investments, i.e items that are of good quality and style that I can wear for many years and even pass down or gift to special persons in my life. I am finding that a lot of fast fashion pieces are unsustainable for the planet, are of poorer quality and simply do not last after a few washes.

I'm doing some freelance work while job hunting, not having a good regular income has made me really think about a lot of my bad and impulsive spending (stressing over eBay and worrying about Xmas outfits) I was into over the past decade, how much can you save by buying good quality , beautiful pieces that you can wear again and again in a versatile way while saving/creating time to do things that feed your soul and happiness?

Saturday, 26 March 2016

Frida Kahlo

*photographer unknown
This woman never ceases to amaze me. Frida Kahlo inspires me with her art, style and how she lived her life so creatively despite personal suffering from an accident and her turbulent marriage to Diego Rivera.

I visited an exhibition of her work in Paris in 2014 - you can't compare her art work in a book or prints to the viewing, where you can see the true colours and lustre which are key components of most of her work.

“Maybe you are searching among the branches, for what only appears in the roots.”- Rumi