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Saturday, 31 December 2011

New Year's Message to all my Followers:

                                          MAY 2012 BE AN EYE OPENER
                                    UNTIL THEN....FROCK UNTIL YOU DROP !

Monday, 26 December 2011

The Magical World According to Carlos

 Carlos sells "The Big Issue" magazine on Motcomb street, one of London’s classier streets, at least he was when I rushed passed him early December with a brief glance in his direction. He was juggling a magazine from one hand to another with a big old smile on his face that you simply couldn’t ignore ...along with the stomach clenching piercing in his ears... You know the one that makes a gaping hole in the earlobe and your stomach somersault?

Anyway, ignore him I did as I rushed passed with a barely a fleeting smile in his direction as I headed towards my local newsagent, berating myself for not having stopped once in there.

“Tell him you don’t read the Big Issue and give him a £1. Just so you know...he is a very talented photographer, he is planning an exhibition too. Ask him...he’ll show you some of his work.
So out I went, back towards the juggling Carlos.

"The Big Issue" is a weekly street magazine written by professional journalists and sold by homeless individuals. The vendors purchase it for £1; sell it for £2, keeping a pound for themselves. This is an opportunity for them to earn a legitimate buck and reintegrate themselves into mainstream society.

I gave him a £1 and told him that I had heard that he was a photographer which he was visibly flattered by and as I turned to leave after our brief chat, he called out to me and  handed me a couple of postcards of his work. I could have left and never seen what Carlos saw when he peered through his viewfinder and that would have been a doggone shame.
Honestly? I don’t know what I was expecting... but what I wasn’t expecting was to actually like what I saw. More than that...I was taken in first by the haunting images before me and then the look of unadulterated pride on Carlos’ face when I told him so. With his permission, I have printed them here for all to see,enjoy them and visit his unpretentious site for more.

Moral of the Story: next time you rush by a seller of "The Big Issue" don’t render him invisible by your lack of interest or time... (which we are all guilty of doing). Once in a while stop.... you may even meet Carlos or another budding artist in the making.

I urge you to visit Carlos’ site and see for yourself; there is far more than meets the eye and what an eye he has.


photo by Carlos Gonzalez Perez*copyright*

San Francisco:Photo printed with permission from Carlos Gonzalez Perez*copyright*

Friday, 16 December 2011

Someone Like You ....Adele

While shopping in our local Waitrose when last in London, I came face to face with...the gorgeous ADELE!

I was walking up an aisle,arms full of stuff and looking for my sister, who had absconded with the trolley,when I stopped to let someone pass: "Thank you very much" I heard someone politely say.
"You're welcome" I replied and then looked up into... Adele's gorgeous face. Yes,up! Believe me when I tell you that Adele is tall  and more amazonian than small ninja turtle, as we are given to believe.
 When she saw that the realisation of who she was had hit me... she quietly looked down and continued on her way. I was hardly going to tackle her to the floor and would need a step ladder to do so... and frankly,I'm just not the kind of person who goes berserk when faced with a celebrity. I silently acknowledged her and went about my business... as did everyone else . Maybe no one else recognised her under the big fuzzy hat she was wearing with her locks looking distinctly blonder...
Had she just come out of Daniel Galvin Jnr's salon across the road...hmmmm.

I for one, was in quiet contemplation of Adele at the checkout counter and adoring her from afar.

*Vogue Oct.2011*

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Something Old,Something New: for Xmas or simply just because...

               * Antique jewellers SJ Phillips and Eliane Fattal : a match made in heaven * 

I don't know whether you are familiar with the magnificent SJ Phillips shop on Bond street, but let me tell you that it is a treasure trove of Victorian and Edwardian delights.
Each piece tantalises and taunts you from the safety of the window display as your eyes sweep over the items on display. You simply have to tear yourself away with a sigh, knowing full well that you haven't even scratched the visual surface and to try an absorb anymore will result in a migraine for you and your other half ...
 I for one have always been in awe and somewhat intimidated by antique jewellery shops; I daren't inflict my ignorance on the staff by entering the premises with foolish questions while desperatly pawing the merchandise with a half crazed look upon my face.
As the saying goes : " Who Dares, Wins"and  that is precisely what portrait photographer Eliane Fattal did, quite succesfully might I add.


Eliane was on a mission to find a flower ring and instantly fell in love with a 19th century pansy brooch  on sale at SJ Phillips. She had the in house workshop team convert it into a ring of her own design. A firm believer in jewellery that must be worn at all times and not only on special occasions,(which for some are few and far between)Eliane continued to convert pieces that worked with her everyday uniform of jeans eliciting many a stolen glances from passersby.
It was apparent that she had the eye and sensitivity to be able to approach Victorian and Edwardian pieces of jewellery by giving them the respect they deserved while indulging in a flight of fancy. The Norton family,owners of the establishment, were delighted by the outcome and a collaboration was made with the launch of the aptly named "Metamorphosis" .

"Metamorphosis" is a collection of 20 heirloom pieces that have been converted into drop dead gorgeous pieces of self indulgence.


Each conversion is easily reversed to its original mount thanks to a little screwdriver found in the velvet lined boxes so that its original value can be restored. The chosen piece is presented in a leather bound book box with a brief history of its origins as well as a historical telling of how one can wear the item in many different ways.  
Bring a little Downton Abbey into your life.


                                            * Something old with something funky*

And you get my latest discovery: MYMO33. 
This is Myriam Adjinakou's baby and her passion : a collection of colourful and vibrant pieces of jewellery that focuses on vintage pieces collected at flea markets throughout Paris and on her travels. These are then mixed and assembled with all sorts of exciting and innovative materials to create unique "hybrid" pieces of jewellery.

Myriam is French born and LA based  who established her jewellery line back in 2001, after having had an internship within the hallowed walls of Chanel, rue Cambon as well as honing her techniques further at Louis Vuitton. She soon came to the realisation that this was no longer a hobby or a whim, but something she was willing to invest in ,in order to create and share her passion with like minded people: fun,fashionable trendsetters with a finger firmly placed on the "vibe" button.

She has just launched her new collection of  one of a kind cuffs and collared necklaces made from different pieces she discovered on her travels to Casablanca and Lome,Togo as well as in and around Paris.

Prices start from around $150 to $950 and will shortly be available at Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdales and other high end boutiques throughout the US...and if you are not in the area...online at:

Bold and beautiful, these pieces are made with attention to detail and today's trends.Most importantly: they are made with love....Who can resist anything that comes from the heart.
I can't.

Do visit Myriam's website to see the gorgeous elephant , read her fun bio...and for the jewellery of course!

"Quand on aime...on ne compte pas" so put your calculator down and click on "pay".

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Pierre Reboul: Ode to the QuailBurger.

Whenever we go for lunch at Pierre Reboul's house of culinary magic in Aix en Provence,we feel excited like two kids about to enter FAO Schwarz in NYC...that's Hamleys to you and me . We are giddy on the drive up and too distracted to deal with the amazing shopping on hand until.... we enter and then the magic begins.

A week before :
My BF had told me in no uncertain terms that the "Caille Burger/Quail burger" was back on the menu  at Pierre Reboul and that we simply had to go; Xmas budgets be damned! And as we licked our lips Homer Simpson style while uttering "Mmmm...Caille Burger" our eyes locked and our fate was sealed.

3 days before:
I called to reserve for lunch on Saturday and right before I hung up something made me  mention the burger.....There was to be a menu change on the very day we wanted to come. Crime of all crimes!...I was speechless, my BF was bereft and all this translated into sheer desperation over the phone. The chef was consulted and Joy of Joys! Two quails were put aside for us...Now THAT is what I call service.

The QuailBurger: The gourmet burger for those in the know....

Small enough to fit into the palm of your hand...but you dare not alter the perfect symmetry.
The perfectly toasted round bun  and the sesame seeds that pop and crunch in tandem in your mouth...but wait! Before you can even sate your hunger for the juicy quail you have to pop the green ice lolly into your mouth (just seen on the left hand side of the photo) to get the full impact of this mouth watering journey. The ice stick is in fact the sophisticated version of a pickle without the crunch or the juices trickling down the sides of your mouth. Oh Boy! That will make you laugh and sigh with joy, for what is a burger without a pickle? Batman without Robin...redundant and rather sad.
 Then and only then can you take the perfect bite into the burger and I swear I could hear angels sing. The quail is soft and juicy and the relish crunchy, adding the cushion to the bun and playing havoc with your taste buds.
Close your eyes and saviour the moment .Of course Virgile, the sommelier will serve you the perfect glass of red wine to accompany your journey.

4 words to describe this experience : Bliss in a bite....and Perfect,as I seemed to have used the word rather often .

Consult the website for the menu,they change every 3 months or so...keep your eyes open for the return of the QuailBurger and then tell everyone you know about it.

"Mmmmm.... Pierre Reboul."