Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Loving Your Beautiful Work: Origins

I’m always a fan of brands that employ a natural approach to skincare and Origins have the wonderfully promising slogan of ‘Powered by Nature. Proven by Science’ a double whammy statement if ever I heard one.

Origins products are formulated with natural and certified organic ingredients and 100% natural essential oils. They are without detrimental nasties like Parabens and (the worst) animal ingredients. The company uses recycled materials whenever possible as well and as a result have planted the equivalent of 1.25 million trees: guilt-free skincare shopping? ‘Yes please’, I say.

I’m Using it Now, LOVING it:
GinZing™ is a refreshing eye cream to brighten and de-puff (RRP £20.00 for 15ml)

Sometimes I wake up and appear to have more luggage resting under my eyes than a packed-to-the-hilt aeroplane. Luckily this wondrous cream seems to manage to take care of every eye-related concern at once. Origins site it as ‘nature’s clinically-proven morning rescue eye cream’ and I am inclined to agree. It’s packed full of good stuff like Panax Ginseng (traditionally used in Chinese medicine), caffeine from coffee beans and magnolia extract. A healthy dose of shimmer comes from natural optric brighteners-an undeniable eye-brightening bonus. It takes a lot to get me looking wide-eyed and bushy tailed in the morning but this cream combined with a bucket-load of NescafĂ© (in my mouth, not on my face) seems to do the trick admirably at the moment.

(If you like this then you’ll love using Origins’ mineral enriched High Potency Night-a-Mins after dark, another fabulous way to fool people into thinking you have had eight hours when you have actually had none.)

I’m Going to Try it Because it Sounds AMAZING:
Brighter by Nature™ is a skin tone correcting serum (RRP: £30.00 for 30ml)

Ageing and sun damage are evil: they stress the skin and lead to overproduction of melanin and skin tone unevenness which makes skin look older prematurely.

This lightweight serum uses potent plant extracts to remove dullness and eliminate dark spots, a bit like laser surgery without the laser surgery. Yeast extract, vitamin C and yummy-smelling Japanese basil leaf all help to restore your skin to glowing gorgeousness. All you have to do is slap it on after cleansing and before moisturising for an instantly more radiant, balanced looking complexion.The science bit? 73% of sensory participants saw an improvement in skin clarity after the very first application.

Get. In. My. Bathroom. Cupboard.

Notable Origins Fact
Origins are currently offering three tailor-made mini-facials to give your skin a boost-perfect for this transitional weather which can play havoc with the face. Choose from:

1. Protect and Repair (using A Perfect World™ products)
2. Calm and Soothe (using Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins™ products)
3. Firm and Lift (using Youthtopia™ products)

These facials are £15.00 but this amount is redeemable against any Origins purchase.

Find out more about Origins here: Origins products are available to buy directly from their website and have a concession in Harrods.

Thursday, 24 September 2009

London Fashion Week: the Exhibition

The London Fashion Week exhibition was held at the slightly more compact setting of 180 the Strand. A modern, gleaming shell of modernity, it was the perfect backdrop to show the gorgeous wares of both new and established designers. Here's what was, in my opinion, the best of the best:

Plastic shoes decorated in Swarovski crystals by designer J Maskrey

Vivienne Westwoods modelled with a lurex socks: surprisingly, a good look

Bracelets by Orit (

A fantastic dress with repeated zip inserts by Sofia Alexander

Detail of rainbow zips

A lovely peach dress by Sia (this photo does not do the colour justice unfortunately)

Another lovely vintage-inspired dress by Sia

The innovative Oxfam DIY stand

The dummy featured a necklace made of fragmented Oyster cards!

A beautiful equine statue at the entrance to the display halls

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Basso & Brooke Party, Home House

The exquisite Grade 1 listed building Home House was Basso and Brooke’s afterparty venue of choice. The bash was hosted by excellent organiser Henry Conway. Guests chatted and supped cocktails beneath the stars in the garden, reminiscing about the week gone by.
This party marked the end of my fashion week, sadly. Photographs from the exhibition and random forgotten shots to follow.
Bruno Basso and Jodie Harsh

Genius milliner Louis Mariette works double animal-print (as a fellow leopard-lover, I intend to try this very soon)

A beautiful handbag by Juliana Lawson (who is holding her creation!)

Me with a wonderfully made-up Big Brother contestant

I thought this girl looked really beautiful - she had sewn little mirrors onto her dress

Loving that neon

Basso & Brooke

Bruno Basso and Christopher Brooke showed a ‘Neo-pop’ inspired collection for Spring 2010, continuing to prove their worth as the kings of digital printing. The clothes seemed to buzz their way down the catwalk in a flurry of colour and streaky, often geometric shapes ‘grounded’ by monochrome zig-zags.

Prints and colour are what these two talented gents do best and both were available in droves. Silhouettes shot between body-con and gathered, loose balloon shapes.

While I thought the range was cohesive and covetable, I did feel as though the prints were shown in a little too much abundance-a bit more blank space by way of a pattern-free separate (or more nude/black mesh) would have been welcome on the eye.

My favourite looks? This gorgeous mesh and print combination (below) and a bold mini-dress (image below that) which I can see Little Boots loving.

The dress I would like

The dress Little Boots would like

A rather fantastic feather coat in the audience

A lovely patriotic hat

What a front row! Harold Tillman and Sir Phillip Green watch the show

The hair and make-up was super-sexy: models sported hair and limbs that looked like they had been dipped in oil

A pleasingly-shaped dress

Loving the layering of long-sleeved tees (a good way of getting wear out of summer dresses in winter, too)

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Mulberry Party at Claridges

“This is the best fashion party EVER” shrieked an exuberant young man (at nobody in particular). He was right. Mulberry hosted their party in the same location as their show, Claridges. Pastel-coloured balloons filled every room, apple cocktails were proffered at every turn as gleaming carousel horses looked on.

Echoing the fairground theme of the luxury brand’s earlier salon-style presentations, the fun-packed party featured a candy floss booth, a (temporary) tattoo parlour, hook-a-duck (on which I won a bow-shaped Mulberry bracelet-YES!) and great DJ-ing from Mike Pickering and Jeff Leach. Friendly Fires performed live and cool frontman Ed agreed that Mulberry’s shindig was indeed “not bad for a fashion party.”

Everyone loves an excuse to let their hair down mid-way through the fashion week and celebrites are no exception. Fashion VIP's in attendance included Alexa Chung, Leigh Lezark, Pixie Geldof, Daisy Lowe, Natalie Press, Tolula Adeyemi, Tamsin Egerton, Sarah Harding, Nicola Roberts, Kaya Scodelario, Eddie Redmaine, Jamie Campbell Bower, Lady Victoria Harvey, David Walliams, Ben Grimes, Caroline Seiber, Chanel Iman, Yasmin Mills, Amber Le Bon, Daniel Merriweather, Erin O'Conner, Lara Stone, Kirsty Hume and Trish Goff.

Mulberry’s whirl of fairground fun included was a breath of fresh air in the midst of the poser-heavy parties of late.

Hook-a-duck to win a Mulberry bag or bracelet

Candy floss (obviously)

I get painted by Lucy from Into You (

Nicola Roberts wearing latest body-con favourite, Mark Fast

The lovely Pixie Geldof works crushed velvet


Cool dudes

Lady Isabella Hervey and Sarah Harding wait to get temporary tattooed

Friendly Fires

Ed and I

Mr David Walliams avec a star-struck me

Hot lady in Emilio de la Morena

Touloula Adeyemi

Camilla from Matches

Beautiful girl, lovely dress

Mr Panu Long, Jeff Leach and me

Jeff and his funny posse

Alexa Chung

Panu, Simone Konu and Ithaka