December, 2009

Dec 09

Stuff your stockings!

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Stocking stuffers! These are actually my favourite presents to buy because they are the first and usually some of the best things you open. It’s all about finding something small and perfect!

So here are a few ideas for you this Christmas season…

For Beauty Addicts:

  • Skindinavia (don’t you just love the name) Ten Years Younger Makeup finish. Give this to your mum or sister as it’s a rather personal item. It’s absolutely fabulous because it allows your make-up to withstand any conditions for an entire day with only a few sprays. Six hygroscopic moisturisers stop foundation, eye shadow, blush and concealer from flaking or becoming powdery. And it’s a bargain price as well.
  • Crème de la Mer lip balm. Made with Crème de la Mer’s original Miracle Broth with marine extracts, botanicals and vitamins, this regenerates the delicate skin on your lips. I am putting one of these in every stocking this year as it’s the perfect little jar to keep in your pocket as you ski at Courchevel – you know how the slopes can tear your lips to shreds in just one day. This balm doesn’t have any insane feminine scent so it is perfect for male stocking stuffers as well. Trust me, they will thank you for this!
  • For those of you spending your vacation in the sun instead of the snow, I would suggest filling your loved one’s stocking with Alison Raffaele’s Blotting Tissues, which allow you to remove perspiration and excess oil from your skin without altering your concealer or foundation make-up in the slightest. It’s ideal for wiping the sweat from your brow while still looking sultry on the beach, dahling…

For the Young at Heart:

  • Big Apple Left Right Mittens from Kate Spade. There are so many cute mittens at Kate Spade this season, I can barely contain myself! Run into the store if you are in NYC, or if you’re in London, grab yourself some in one of the major department stores. This really is for the kid in us all. Cute, and they will make you stand out from the crowd.
  • Wool and the Gang knitting kit. Runway models knit between shows, celebs do it on long-haul flights and CEOs do it to relax after a hard day’s work. Knitting isn’t just for grannies any more.
  • Flip Video camera. I bought one of these last year and took it with me to Fashion Week in September. I had dozens of editors asking me where they could get their own. It’s perfect for recording the shows to rewatch later that night when you’re writing your report. Now I never leave home without it as you never know when it may be needed. This little camera is the size of a compact digital camera but can take up to 60 minutes of high definition video. Ah, I love technology that makes my life easier!

For the Fashionista:

  • Louis Vuitton Keys Pouch. Large enough to accommodate change as well as keys, this pouch features vintage printed trunk labels on Vuitton’s iconic monogrammed leather.
  • Anya Hindmarch Save Me Leather USB holder. Although this is supposed to hold a USB Key, I use mine on posh luggage to travel. It’s the perfect luggage tag. Just slip in your name and address into the compartment so that whoever finds you bag knows it wants to be saved!
  • Gossip Girl DVDs. Even Victoria Beckham is taking notes on the outfits worn on this show. It is said to be the best “styled” TV around. The girl who finds this in her stocking will have hours of enjoyment ahead of her – at least until the new Sex And The City movie is out in cinemas.

Dec 09

12 handbags of Christmas

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Clockwise from top left:
Miu Miu
Nappa quilted hobo

Kara Ross
Lucis python clutch

Bayswater leather bag

Yves Saint Laurent
Muse Two ponyskin bag

Judith Leiber
Beehive clutch

Large leather tote

Burberry Prorsum
Laser-cut suede tote

Mat quilted leather bag

Bottega Veneta
Intrecciato karung snakeskin clutch

Proenza Schouler
PS1 extra-large suede satchel

Leopard-print goat hair bag

Anya Hindmarch
Homework canvas tote

All available at net-a-porter

Dec 09

Presents for the special men in your life

1. Aston Martin Cufflinks from TM Bart Medal. With a price-tag of nearly two-thousand GBP, per pair, these are for the men in your life you love and treasure the most. You can be sure not every other investment banker will have these on their wrists as there are only 50 pairs being made. The mini sculptures are actually made with original redundant aluminum metal body panel pieces from DBR1/2 as ‘donor’ metal.

2.  Greatest Rock Anthems Ever Music Collection. Your man will have a new found appreciation for you as a woman “in the know” if you leave this in his stocking for Christmas morning.  This 3-CD set is positively inspiring with hits from Queen, ZZ Top, Deep Purple and Lynyrd Skynyrd. 
3. Male Jewellery is always very difficult. How do you say you love them with something they can wear to always remember it without looking like a fashion victim? Well I think I’ve found an answer – GIles & Brother‘s Railroad Spike Cuff. With the word “always” scrawled on the outside of the cuff he will know he is always on your mind. And it just looks really manly! Love it.
4. Entourage on DVD. Every man I know absolutely loves this show. Who wouldn’t love a series all about a man, his four best friends, beautiful beaches covered with beautiful women and parties all over Los Angeles. Invest in this piece of bribery to get some together couch time. You’ll enjoy it too!
5. How about a nice bottle of Bollie (ie. Bollinger) for you are your hubby to share by the fire on Christmas night. I’ve never known someone to turn down champagne as a gift. Great not only for the men in your life but also all the women and a serious must as a house party gift during the holidays. Why not buy an entire case?
6. You will have hours of fun with the new Flip Video Ultra High Definition Camcorder.  It can record up to two hours of HD video and is small enough to slip in your pocket for those unexpected moments in life worth capturing. Cameras have never been better, or cheaper, so you have no excuses for not recording your life to the fullest!
7. Order an ipod now and get to work on filling the memory with all of his favourite songs. It’s not only a great present he will use everyday but it’s one you poured your heart and soul into perfecting with special selections of music. If you don’t leave this last minute you can have Apple engrave a special message on the back of the gadget.  
8. Slip him a card with a date and time in the new year and an address. January is the most depressing month of the year and we always need a little cheering up so plan ahead and book a romantic hotel, even if it’s in your home town.  Get away from your usual routine and spoil him to death. It will give you both a cheerier outlook on life.
9. If you are lucky enough to have a little bit more money this Christmas extend the hotel to a foreign country. Run away to a warm island or a cozy cottage. But plan everything yourself and simply surprise him on the day you leave. Everyone loves surprises! And you can get some really great deals on flights these days so this doesn’t exactly have to break the bank!
10. An absolutely amazing platter of every sort of seafood you could imagine. If your family is getting together for a big Christmas and your men are fish fans this is the way to go. It will be as if you gave them the ocean for the holidays. Make sure you give the Fish Society at least 48 hours so they can bring in the fresh stuff for you. The platter includes seventeen types of seafood: giant crab legs, crab claws, lobster, four kinds of prawns, an assortment of shellfish and 750g of sevruga caviar.
11. Ralph Lauren World Time Model Watch in White Gold.This is a gorgeous classic timepiece from the new collection for Ralph Lauren made by Jaeger-LeCoultre. With a gorgeous white gold face, sapphire crystal case back and dark brown alligator strap this has tradition written all over it. A great addition to any wardrobe for a man of distinction.

Dec 09

Pre-fall Collections 2010 report

It’s pre-fall 2010 time and the designers are certainly keeping us all entertained with a wide variety of new looks. There are some repeated trends such as sheer fabrics and chunky jewelry. Unfortunately harem pants seemed to have survived another year as well although they are less gold sequin flash and more black swinging fabric. There also seems to be an emphasis on the colour red for cocktail dresses and formal gowns as seen at Diane von Furstenberg, Michael Kors, Oscar de la Renta and Carolina Herrera. Shoulder padded shoulders have placed a nice curve on what was last season a strong point outwards from the collarbone. It’s a nice change adding a touch more femininity to the collections, bar Versace who stuck with a strong angled shoulder for the season preview.
Here’s my top ten looks from the collections shown….

1. Oscar de la Renta
2. Carolina Herrera
3. Donna Karan
4. Chanel
5. Rachel Roy
6. Versace
7. Devi Kroell
8. Alexander Wang
9. Burberry Prorsum
10. J Mendel

Dec 09

Satisfy the senses this Christmas


So it’s Christmas: the time of year we all love and hate the most. We get to shop til we drop for our friends and family, but also try not to throw fits over the crazy crowds on Oxford Street and long queues for the must have items! My Amex heart, or should I say Amex itself, loves my zipping the little black card through machines at every occasion. My bank manager, however, will not be so pleased come January when the season has ended and reality hits hard with big credit card balances needing to be paid.

Over the next two weeks, leading up to the big day I am going to take you shopping with me and show you what everyone’s buying for the special someone in their lives. So be sure to check back regularly for updates and ideas for last minute grabs.

My first trip out and I decided to try a “themed basket” for the ladies who have been so dear to me this year in London, New York and Los Angeles. I’m putting together a huge wicker case that contains an item to satisfy every one of the five senses. I’m going to be a little extravagant here with my choices so let me say that, although I am giving these all together, each item is an excellent gift to wrap up on its own.


Very Hollywood by Michael Kors

I am a big fragrance person. How big exactly? Well I actually stayed on the tube for two stops longer than necessary once simply because the man sitting next to smelt so divine I thought I may have been in heaven. So I am always on the lookout for the next best thing. Today, I’m proud to say I’ve found it with the new Michael Kors fragrance. Ladies, this will have him staying two stops to take you in…Men, gift this present with great caution. Your lady is going to have noses following her everywhere!


Coco Mademoiselle Shimmering touch by Chanel

Well this really is for all the senses. This gorgeous body gel will make you sparkle and shine like a new penny. I am, personally, in love with the bottle itself. My guilty admission here is that I bought the bottle just to keep on my shelf at home as it looks so beautiful and luxurious. I then was yelled at by a good friend (who also happens to be a leading makeup artist in London) that I was a moron for not having tried it yet. Now I have one bottle on the shelf, that remains untouched, and one bottle always in use in the shower.


Chanel Tweed Highlighter from the Christmas Collection

Unless you have a house in St. Bart’s, around Christmas time we all tend to look a bit pale and bland. So imagine my excitement when a friend gave me something that could take away the dullness and make me look as if I actually had a bit of life left in me – the Tweed Highlighter from Chanel. Don’t allow your recipient to be scared when they first open the compact. They won’t want to dip into this little piece of heaven as it is a perfect replica of the classic Chanel tweed.
Just keep telling them you bought it as makeup and it must be used as such. All it will take is one stroke just below the cheekbone for them to fall in love with what it is capable of doing rather than its aesthetic value in the package.


Soufflé Body Crèmes Sampler by Laura Mercier

This is really bad (and I can’t believe I am admitting it in a public forum) but I actually wanted to eat my arm when I put this crème on initially. I was standing in the middle of Selfridges and I dabbled a few spots on my  forearm and with one rub my eyes transformed my arm into a delectable Crème Brûleé. That happens to be my personal favourite of the three crèmes available in the sampler. The pack comes with two other blends which are Almond Coconut Milk and Crème de Pistache. I will make you this promise. If you satisfy one sense for your loved one, make it this one and you will be a Christmas hero!


The present here is for you really. You will be showered with praise for your expertise in gift giving. Sit back and enjoy it. Although I hope you are better at this than me. I went out and bought all of these items and they never went into a box, in fact never left the house. They’re mine, all mine! The greatest gifts of all are sometimes the ones you give yourself, our little secret ;)

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