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Friday, 28 December 2012

From The Mouths of Fashion Maestro's

I simply adore the fashion fabulous Diana Vreeland: she put red on the map,her hands were her favourite part of her body and she is once again brought to life in an intimate new documentary:
"The Eye Has To Travel-Diana Vreeland"

                                         "Never Fear being vulgar, just boring"

                                          "I adore pink! It's the Navy blue of India."

Thursday, 27 December 2012

The Year After by Martin Davies

If like me and a million others you are a Downton Abbey fan then this is a book for you.

Tom returns from the war and France and is summoned back to Hannesford Court by the mesmerising Margot Stansbury. Now 5 years later,secrets are brought back up to the surface: a clash of class, an etude in etiquette gone awry.
This is a compelling read, a book that captivates your heart and imagination...your hands are simply drawn to pick it up all hours of the day.

This book is a far better choice of time spent then watching the decidedly boring Downton Abbey Xmas special, even the enigmatic Maggie Smith can't rescue it from the doldrums.
What a darned shame ...so unexpected and such a snooze fest until the end when.....

....don't worry I won't spoil it for you...but you'll find that at the end of "boring" comes an "OMG" moment that is almost an insult to our attention span.

"Oh, dear Carson...bring in the smelling salts and my book please:

"The Year After" by Martin Davies."

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Frockanrolla 's Xmas Cheer...




Friday, 21 December 2012

Chill-axing at Le Boudoir de Jenny

We all need a moment to step away from our lives into havens of peace,tranquillity and vanilla incense.

Today I did just that...tired and stressed from my eminent move and everything else that gets blown out of proportion....I walked straight into the warm and welcoming arms of :
"Le Boudoir de Jenny" in Cannes for a pedi and shellac but most importantly for a total switch off.

I love this place,it opened last spring on a road parallel to the rue d'Antibes and despite the ugliness of the road....this Boudoir is all lollipops and marshmallows,rose and vanilla incense,pretty candles in a girly girl atmosphere that is an absolute home away from home.
Tastefully decorated with comfort in mind, you walk in depleted and walk out ready to face your reality again.

All the big names in nail polish can be found: OPI,Essie and a huge range of colours for Shellac. 
This is a nail bar heaven and a pedicure paradise .....sit back and relax.

At the pedi side of the Boudoir...you can me pummelled and kneaded by the massage chairs while your feet are pampered. Thankfully Tiziana doesn't do idle chitchat but what she did is a  wonderful job on my feet.

Thank God for Shellac! What a wonderful invention...

Here is the address:
Le Boudoir de Jenny:8,rue Lecerf-06400 Cannes
Tel:04 89 68 42 58

Classic pedi: 38€ + Shellac polish=66€
Peace of mind= priceless

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

C....is for CARVEN

I fell in love with this silhouette the moment I saw it:
the A-Line ribbed wool sweater, the cotton "vicar" collar that marks a stark contrast and then the suede laser cut skirt that appears like a flower in bloom......
And all by the wonderfully chic House of Carven.

Skirt: price on request...so must be bloody expensive,with only few for the privileged....
....Altogether now:

Santa Babyyyyyy.......

Monday, 17 December 2012

Charlie Brown's Words of Wisdom

Look what I found?

Perfect Monday Morning Philosophy.....from the wise Mr. Schulz

So for all you out there who woke up this morning and asked:


Celebrity Sightings: London Dec.2012

I love my celebrity sightings and in London it is par for the course....

I have had a conversation with Angelina Jolie at Adhoc on the King's road after she got her Oscar for her role in "Girl Interrupted", I have come face to face with the diminuative Pink in Harvey Nichols with clothes in her hands to try on , I've seen  the hansome,smiling Paul Bettany and his scowling wife Jennifer Connolly riding the escalators there too...Adele in Waitrose last year as well as seeing the lovely Bill Nighy trying on an overcoat in Selfridges and looking fabulous last month. Dare I also mention Amy Childs from TOWIE looking out of her comfort zone in the Harrods food all. We were having lunch at the Bentleys seafood counter and she came with 2 other people,sat down for lunch too. Too much make up and a diet coke is all I remember...then again why bother?

So who did I see last week in London?

Why Sam Mendes as we were leaving the Bulgari Hotel in Knightsbride after a lovely dinner there with friends. So excited was I to have recognised ,let alone spotted Mr Mendes that I quickly jumped and pounded my friend Philippe's chest with glee: "Sam Mendes! Behind you!!"
"Where? Where?" he replied intrigued as my sister,her husband, Philippe's wife( and my dear friend) Janet looked on with amusement at all the fuss I was creating (did I mention the lateness of the hour and all the wine we drank?)
Once safely tucked into our taxi did Philippe add;
"Honestly Reem all that fuss for nothing...Big Deal!!"
"What happened to "where? where??"!! I replied not wanting to be the only one left feeling childish!!

A few days later as we were waiting for our table at Scotts in Mayfair, Charles Saatchi and his lovely wife Nigella Lawson breezed in.
 Now they looked particularly dishevelled, both with unbrushed hair,large flapping overcoats ... had I not been paying attention,they would have walked passed me unnoticed...
Who am I kidding my Celeb-dar is highly tuned and never lets me down.

NB: How could I forget spotting Flabio Briatori sitting down for a meal at the fabulous Novikov in Mayfair....
I mean Flavio!!! Oops.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

What's in a Name....?

Thanks to an overrated reality show on British TV...my name has been propelled into the limelight and is now very much a "noun"....

Thanks to TOWIE:The Only Way Is Essex..."Reem": a middle eastern name that means little gazelle has had a makeover and has been liberally used by Joey Essex to describe an:

" incredibly sexy and physically talented individualA “reem” is always envied and desired by others who are not able to reach “reem status”

Luckily it means THAT to him...imagine if it meant something truly hideous.Still,the whole thing makes me roll my eyes and quite frankly...I never gave it a second thought
..... until......

I was in "Office" a shoe shop chain in King's road trying on a pair of Nike High Dunk's...which they didn't have in the colour I wanted.

"Would you like me to ring round to one of our other shops?..."
"Yes please."
And he located a pair in Selfridges:
"Can I have your name please?"

He cocked his head to one side and a bizarre grin appeared on his lips...as though to say:"You are joking?!"...And then it hit me,like a skillet to the head...that bloody TV show has its followers right here.

"Yessss..that is my name:REEM! Would you like to see some ID as proof?"
"Wow, how funny..." he replied stifling a giggle.
"Only to you" I whispered. "Go On!! Look at my Passport for the hell of it!!"I added for effect.

Not that it would have made a blind bit of difference to this young,pimply individual at Office...I had just made his day and everybody else's who happened to answer his phone calls.

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Trapped Within a Gilded Gucci Cage

Saturday afternoon in Knightsbridge is never a dull moment: The anti Fur protesters come out in droves chanting :" Shame on you! Gucci....Harrods....Cavalli...."whoever they are targetting....Fur is Murder!"

So the reason for this photo? I am in fact trapped behind the solid doors of Gucci...I wish you could see me...hilarious!
As I attempted to leave I am faced with the closed doors,the chanting crowds outside with banners and pamphlets. I look at the 3 burly guards and say:

"Can I leave? I'm wearing wool and viscose?!!"

"Madam,...no problem" says Burly Guard as I approach the door...hesitant 'cos to be honest it was rather overwhelming:

"Ermmmm...Are you coming with me?"

Luckily the Police were by the door,the crowd didn't fly at me...and there was my sister and her husband in hysterics watching me emerge.
This photo was their gift to me...to immortalise the moment I was trapped within Gucci.

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Let it Snow ! MYKITA & MONCLER AW 2012/13

The folks at MYKITA have continued their match made in heaven with MONCLER for AW 2012/13....

It began with an homage to mountains and all those who love to ski them and has evolved into a new collection : LIONEL ...an inspiration drawn from 1950s alpine glacier goggles.

It is an edgy,modern collection with all the extras that MYKITA are famous for...and above all,they offer unmitigated protection against the sun's harmful rays. 

To be added to the Christmas gift list asap.....

Many thanks to the MYKITA team.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

John Lewis Christmas Advert 2012 - The Journey

For all you softies out there...watch this lovely ad for John Lewis dept.store plus, the song is hauntingly beautiful....

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

A Touch of Classy

Brrrrrr....winter is truly here and the coats have come out.
This one caught my eye: ultra feminine, this coat gives good "hourglass" and is beautifully tailored: 
Coat by Stella McCartney £3,740 
The hat is by Alberta Ferretti £393....the look is minimalist chic and I love it.

Now for some classy fun: silk top(£1,000) and wool trousers(£783) are both by Celine. I know...I did say as the adage goes "No white after labour day"...but frankly white looks fabulous in winter (NOT SHOES!!) paired with tawny skin ,a chunky sweater and a navy  pea coat....Fabulous....Fun...my kind of wardrobe.

Moving on to the Amish like skull cap on her head...for the shoot, it is fabulous and fun. In reality it is freakish and funny and at the almighty sum of £735.... Marios Schwab must be having a laugh.
...but is it at us, or with us.....???

More fashion observations soon...

Saturday, 3 November 2012

A Prickly Pair ....

Now that's more like it ...Kurt Geiger!

These stiletto booties have all this season's required "accoutrement's":a heel that is thin and high,counter balanced by the white platform with a hint of a blue streak(didn't come out in scan! grrrr...) and of course....the silver spikes,de rigueur since Christian Louboutin took to adorning his hightop sneakers and velvet slippers.
Obviously since...everyone has dipped a toe in those waters:
"Imitation is the highest form of flattery..." and all that jazz.

Sexy in your face and tongue in cheek chic...you have to have fun with fashion. Take it too seriously and it will take you over and turn you into :
a) a slave to fashion
b) a monster.

Monday, 29 October 2012

No White after Labour Day...

Now that summer is officially over and the gloves are back on...out come the white sandals.

Kurt Geiger have these magnificent sandals featured in October Vogue UK....Somehow the idea of wearing sandals let alone white ones in the depth of miserable weather is beyond me...as are a coat/sandal combo.
As gorgeous as they are and they are truly lovely..."I can't see the rhyme nor reason to buy these out of season"...
See what I did there?
Poetry in motion...that's what I shall dub these sandals and my thoughts on them.

What else it out there?
To be continued....

Saturday, 27 October 2012

An Aromatic Upgrade...

We were checking in at our hotel in London and all was going swimmingly until the lady at reception looked up at us in dismay and said:
"I am terribly sorry ladies...but your room isn't ready...would you like a drink at the bar? It should take about 20mns.."
My sister and I looked at each other and declined the offer graciously wanting to quickly drop our luggage off in our room and go and have a late lunch.
"Not to worry...we will give you an upgrade!"she replied when she saw that we weren't in the mood to hang about.
And just like that...we were granted a "better" room (not that the usual was anything but perfect for us,so we were excited about this upgrade)....
...until we walked in to find ourselves in what seemed to be an identical room.There was no table on one side of the bed where the desk normally was ,there was no friendly fruit platter nor complimentary bottle of water. 
"What is that smell?" I asked my sister.

Later while sitting with friends we told them about our baffling upgrade:
"Sometimes it is not about the size of the room" said my friend's husband." They'll add a chair...."
"No...they only thing they added was a smell!" I replied bombastically.

Book Recommendation: Tigers in Red Weather by Liza Klaussmann

Don't let the title throw you...although I do admit to mulling it over and over in my head to make sense of it....the choice of title will become clear at the very end.
Until then...do NOT be in hurry to find out as this will make you rush through a bewitching novel,with palpable intrigue that has you rooted to your seat,bed, couch wherever you choose to be while reading this novel.

This is about a family in the aftermath of the 2nd World War:Nick and Helena...2 cousins who are so close that their love for each other sometimes becomes confused and in that confusion contempt has time to breed and proliferate into their lives. 
This is about childhood dreams and adult realities,about their husbands, off springs and their lovers.
A wonderful tale told from 5 perspectives and no,that doesn't effect the tale it actually enhances it.
Curious yet?

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Make Yourself Youthful Super Serum by Soap & Glory

I am in heaven! I have just brought this back from London and I LOVE IT!
This "super serum" is a joy to apply..it goes on rich but smooth and is quickly absorbed by the skin, light and soft.
Soap & Glory : Make Yourself Youthful...and useful...Go get it.
If you like minimum facial care.. ie: not spending hours applying creams and foundations and serums...or is it the other way round...
This product is for you and me....to be used daily as or under your moisturizer...and after brushing your teeth...
That's it. 

Monday, 22 October 2012

Uma's Baby

You must all be sitting on the edge of your seats,dying to know what Uma Thurman has called her daughter with baby daddy: Arpad Busson.

Remain seated ...this may take a while...Here goes:

Rosalind Arusha Arkadina Altalune Florence Thurman-Busson...

...But you can call her Rosie.... for her sake and ours.

Thursday, 18 October 2012


Kelly Osborne was sporting a manicure at the Emmy's that would be considered "breaking the bank" by any normal and affordable standards. 
*Taken from Grazia magazine*
The dark sparkly manicure is by AZATURE and consists of 267 carats of crushed black diamonds and costs a mind blowing: £160,000 a bottle...of nail varnish....which has a platinum lid...in case you needed more justification to throw your money down the toilet...cos you will, you know...when that polish comes off!!!
*taken from Grazia*
The article in Grazia also mentions that Ms Osborne is the 2nd person to be seen out and about sporting this polish,who was the 1st? Why Jenny from The Block, of course...cos we shouldn't be "fooled by the rocks that (she) got...I'm still Jenny from the block..."

Selfridges in London are set to stock them soon...and if this whimsy hasn't affected you whatsoever...there will be a cheaper alternative coming out too: with just the 1 crushed diamond...for £18.
Well....nail polish for everyone!!!

I wouldn't buy this polish unless it had crushed Hermes leather in it and could sprout a Kelly bag from my finger tips!!!

Fashion foolishness.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

"It's not a journey" ...It's: CHANEL N°5 Part 1

A collective intake of breath could be heard when women across the globe became transfixed in front of their TV screens when Brad Pitt appeared  in sexy black and white, smokin'hot and spoke..:"It's not a journey..."
Intrigued, I watched in silence while hanging on his every word :..."wherever I go,there you are..." and then I felt a chill down my back....
Angelina put that bloody knife down...NOW!

Chanel No5.....
Grab a bottle but hands off Brad!!

Monday, 15 October 2012

Chatting with Miss.Daisy...

I was a little early for my appointment and was ushered into the tiny waiting room to sit on a bench beside Miss Daisy...who could have been a day over 80,but who's counting. She was decked out in a coat and scarf that only the elderly can wear during a heatwave:

"OooH! The wind has picked up" she says turning to me.. And then her glance falters and remains on my bare arms with a look of horror as though I was sitting with my boobs hanging out.
"You should cover up! The weather is capricious you know!"
"Yes,Madame you are absolutely right,I have felt the chill in the air."

She starts to fiddled with her bag,her scarf and then picks a sweet out from a bowl and says:
"Have one...she has these little sweets ..."
I take one and am unlucky with the wrapper which is tenaciously hanging onto the boiled sweet with dear life. Miss Daisy is looking at my battle as though I was wrestling a Barracuda:
"Just pop it into your mouth,my dear!"
"Well,I would like to remove the wrapper first!..."
"Never mind that! A bit of plastic won't do you any harm...if you knew what I have had to ingest..."
Wrapper finally off and stuck to my fingers....As I look for a Kleenex in my bag,Miss Daisy's glance goes to my Louis Vuitton handbag:
"That's a lovely handbag..."(a beat)
"Is it real?".....
Only in Cannes...
"Yes Madame..it is!" I smile.
"The prices they charge these days! I know! ..I used to work in the trade...The things I have seen...."
And she was off to her appointment...the things I should have asked but didn't!

Friday, 12 October 2012

Book Review: "Tiny Sunbirds Far Away" by Christie Watson

For starters let me say one word in a reverential whisper...Enchanting.

This delightful book is narrated by a 12 year old Nigerian girl called Blessing whose beloved and "loud" father is caught in bed with another woman by her mother. They have to leave the comforts of their "luxuries"in Lagos to go live in a dusty compound with her colourful grandparents and a cast of characters that will make you laugh and cry. 

Blessing thinks that she is leaving life as she knows it behind...little does she know that she will discover abundance where poverty prevails the likes of which will change her and her beloved brother Ezikiel's lives for ever.

So moving,so real...the language is easy and free flowing,the characters are lovable,the fears and dangers very real . But Oh...what a wonderful read...I simply could not put this book down...it would mean quietening Blessing's voice in my head and that simply wouldn't do.

The cast of characters still linger in my head...I want to share them with you.

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Remembering “Voyage”: the Fashion Label with Major Attitude.

I was delving through some old copies of Vanity Fair...(  dating back to the late 90’s) when I came across publicity shots of the Mazzilli family self indulgently highlighting their quirky appearance as well as their overpriced fashion label: “VOYAGE”...remember it?

I  look back on them now and wonder what could possibly have become of this excessively self possessed and arrogant family that not only launched an exclusive line that everybody wanted but alienated the public and the privileged .
I remember the look clearly being a cross between shabby chic with a twist of whimsy,boho insouciance and a large dollop of insanely expensive...Obviously everybody wanted a piece of Voyage...as did I.
On a trip to New York, back in the late 90s, I was stepping off the escalator in Bergdorf’s and came face to face with a VOYAGE display...I rummaged, I sweated, I desired...I HAD TO HAVE A PIECE OF THE DREAM...and came away with a boiled wool sweater with velvet trim that was crazy expensive for what it was.But as all devout fashionistas, one has to pay through the nose to thumb up your nose! 


The look as well as the label went stratospheric: VOYAGE was suddenly on every bodies lips and backs and the boutique was opened to the public...until that is that “Joe Public” became persona non grata...you needed to become a member and make an appointment to enter. . 
Fame does funny things to people, as does a sudden surge in popularity  and fashion status,the Mazzilli’s simply got too big for their boots and started laying down the laws of who could enter their shop.When they turned away and subsequently banned Naomi Campbell.. A collective gasp could be heard resonating like supersonic airwaves across the globe...Wow!!Gobsmacked.


But then potential money spenders were also turned away as well as BIG name celebrities such as Madonna and Julia Roberts.But the one that stuck in my craw was when they turned away the doyenne fashion journalist Suzy Menkes of the International Herald Tribune (immediately recognisable by her coif)...She was dismissed and dissed and when a customer identified her to the proprietor, she was pursued apologetically..Not that it made a blind bit of difference to Ms Menkes at that point, who apparently replied:”I have changed my mind.Goodbye.”


I remember nervously walking up to the closed door, needing to ring a bell only to be told that I had to be a member to gain entrance  or some such nonsense and feeling so irate and humiliated. I also have a vague memory of actually  being in the boutique and feeling rather like the cat that got the cream...Now that I am “in”...I don’t want to buy anything and to be honest it had quickly passed its sell by date. 
Soon people simply stopped wanting to come in.Fashion’s arrogance can gain a public as well as well as lose one,this time it gave birth to a monster whose outright rudeness and arrogance spiralled out of control creating their demise....as well as going into liquidation after running up debts of about £3million.


 I read a brilliant article by Paul Daley written 2002 called: “London’s rude fashion voyagers hit the rocks” referring to Voyage as being...”possibly the world’s most pretentious boutique...”
In the article Paul Daley recounts his multiple attempts at entering the store and being rudely turned away:
“...I had been to restaurants where you pay the waiters to insult you.I’ve seen people pay to be humiliated by stand-up comics. But never had I heard of a clothes shop where you had to a) become a member and b) make an appointment to spend $2000 on a pair of crappy,threadbare tasselled jeans or a t-shirt bearing a monogram of a pink puppy...”

This is what happens when you bite the fashion hand that feeds you. As Heidi Klum repeats ad nauseum on Project Runway:
“One day you are i-nnn... and the other you are a-out”! 

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Runway Mishaps & Models Falling

A dear friend sent this to me and I had to share this with you...
This brings back memories of fashion shows past when I witnessed a few trips,slips and falls on runways.
You try not to giggle...but sometimes...it is just too funny too hold back that even the unfortunate model has to laugh.
Watch and see for yourselves.

Friday, 28 September 2012


The latest offering from the House of Chanel: COCO NOIR.
A seductive and heady mix,this fragrance had me at Indonesian Patchouli...and the promise that the  slick salesman at Terminal 5 would make it his mission to get 15%off the listed price...even if the offer was no longer available.
Top notes of Grapefruit and Bergamot accentuate the floral accord,then comes Rose, Jasmine and my favourite : Indonesian Patchouli and Sandalwood,that give the fragrance the warmth.
Am waiting for a dip in temperature so that I can spritz this heady mix ...until then No. 22 from Chanel does nicely as does Kiehl's Musk.

                                     "I don't do Fashion. I am Fashion" Coco Chanel

..If You Go Down to the Woods Today...




Sunday, 23 September 2012

You're my First,my Best... my Carrot Cake.

I don't like to bake..the mess,the mixing,the amount of.. stuff you need!! To be followed by the ton and a half of cleaning ...not for me...
But...my beloved saw me tear out this recipe from an Easy Living magazine .... I had to at least try.

 Yes...there is a lot of prep to do...which I did while simultaneous preparing Tagliatelle Bolognaise...and yes! the bowls,instruments and utensils were piled sky high...but boy! it was well worth it and the mess: the best-ever carrot cake is simply that...The Best Ever.

..all this (and believe me I cleaned up some before taking these photos)...

For this:

For once in my "baking life"...everything turned out as it should :golden brown and not burnt, cooked through and not stodgy in the middle. I turned it on to the wire rack perfectly rather than have it fall shameless at my feet.
Perfect recipe for the perfect cake. 

Go ahead and try it:

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Annecy:The sights...the views...the fondue.

So you have seen the hotel resort we stayed in....
now here are the sights: