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21 August
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Lights, Camera, Action!! SS15!

Hello lovelies,

I hope everyone is well and not been tempted to switch the heating on just yet? How cold has it been? Brrrr! I am writing this blog wearing a thick wooly cardigan…….In August!

As you know,  I’ve recently shot the campaign for my SS15 collection, and what a shoot it was! I wanted to give you an insight to the shoot, the collection and a little about what influenced me.

I was so excited as I absolutely love the pieces that I have designed. My inspiration was the sea and, in particular, mermaids. I love the greens, turquoises and beautiful blue colours that swirl in the sea. The golden hues of fish and mermaids that glitter under the sunshine. I have always been fascinated by mermaids and I was mad about the film Splash when I was a kid! I think I wanted to be one myself! This collection will be the closet I get.

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I wanted to create a compilation that incorporated all of the amazing colours and textures that the sea gives us. I decided to introduce metallic leather into this collection to portray the shimmery tones that we see on the sea, among fish and not to mention in the mermaid tail! Metallic fabrics are a great way to make a design different and special without changing the style. I chose soft tones that are not brash so that the pieces are still very elegant and stylish. My new favourite piece is the Biker Jacket in metallic Champagne! It’s divine! Blush, supple and timeless. A real Century Staple.

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I have also reworked my signature Desert Dress. My original inspiration for the Desert Dress came from a shirt of Nicky’s. The shirt is by Tom Ford and is black silk with laces that criss cross either side of a deep V-neck.  I used to wear this as an oversized shirt and would tie it at one side to make it cropped. I loved it! I wanted to create a dress with a similar style and Nicky showed me a picture of Verushka the 70′s. She was wearing a dress by YSL. I could not believe it! It was pretty much how I imagined Nicky’s shirt as a dress! I decided to rework what was called the ‘Safari Dress’, with my own interpretation, bringing it up-to-date with a modern twist. My own design is a nod to Saint Laurent and Tom Ford, two genius’ in the fashion world. I sketched a few ideas and came up with my take on the Safari dress. My Desert Dress was born. The Desert Dress will appear in one form or another in every collection of mine. I guess you could say it was my ‘DVF Wrap Dress’! I want this dress to be a future vintage item, a piece of clothing that will stay in your wardrobe for years to come. Longevity is the key, in design and by using natural skins.

For spring/summer, keeping with my niche ‘skins’ theme, I decided to make the dress in Goat Suede with metallic accents. The fluidity of the suede allows the dress to fall effortlessly over the skin and is a real treat to touch. The metallic laces and cuffs add a sense of playfulness to the original design.

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Me wearing the Turquoise Desert Dress, with hints of Metallic, behind the scenes on the shoot.

I have also created the Navaho Tassel dress which is another adaptation of my Desert Dress. The motivation for this piece came from Jelly fish! The tassels around the bottom of the dress are like that seen on a jelly fish. I love the way that they move when you walk in this creation!

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Navaho Tassel Dress 

Other pieces from my new collection include high waisted shorts, a silver coloured pencil skirt and a cropped vest in perforated leather. This vest works fab with the shorts and pencil skirt! Fabulous fresh summer look.

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Cropped Vest

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On set with the Turquoise Shirt and Silver Pencil Skirt

I truly am so proud of my SS15 collection and hope that my clients, friends an fans love it as much as I do!

To be the first to know when my full SS15 range is available follow my twitter account @Kelly_Simpkin and join up to my newsletter on www.kellysimpkin.com

I wish you all a happy weekend!

Big Love,

Kelly x

Kelly Simpking Final Logo - Low Res

05 August
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Summer time is here and i’m a busy bee!

Well hello everybody,

I hope all is well and you are enjoying the summer? I have been so busy over the past few weeks so apologies for not touching base! I was pretty unwell, as you know, then away in Mallorca and my feet have not touched the ground since being back!

To help with my Lupus, and also to relax Nicky, I decided to look into having some reflexology. I have had it once before but a long time ago. A friend of mine had some recently to help her with anxiety and it really improved her condition. She was so over the moon with the results that I thought i’d give it a go! I found somebody that did home visits which suited us down to the ground. We could book a late session and just get straight into bed after- Perfect! The name of our reflexologist that we are now clients of is Abi England and her website is:

http://www.abienglandreflexology.co.uk .

We had our first session just before Mallorca and it so interesting. I didn’t fall asleep or anything but I felt quite a bit of pain in different areas of my feet. Abi explained where these points related to on my body and they were spot on in terms of symptoms that I was having due to Lupus. Amazing! Its almost like a palm reading for your feet! Nicky fell straight to sleep as soon as Abi started, I guess it’s good that he was so relaxed! I am going to try and see Abi every two weeks to see if it helps improve the way that I feel on a day to day basis. It may just be that it helps with anxiety and depression, that I get with the illness or medication that I take, or just make me feel relaxed but to be honest just a lay down with no interruptions for an hour is heaven! Truly recommended! Abi is great!

Since returning from Mallorca we have visited Oblix in the Shard for dinner with Michael and Gaby (Nicky’s brother and Fiancé) and had a beautiful meal along with a stunning view!

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View from the Shard.

It was my nephews third birthday on the 1st of August, the same day as my Grandad’s was. It’s always a slightly upsetting day for me as I think about my granddad and miss him so much, but it has been made easier now that we have Teddy-Jack and can celebrate on this day rather than be sad. Teddy-Jack is such a funny little character, he is so cute! I cannot believe that he is three already! Where does time go?

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My Little Teddy-Jack opening some of his presents!

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Me and my Gramps ( I must be about three or four here!)

I have also shot my Spring/Summer 2015 campaign (I told you I have been busy!!). I absolutely love every shot that we have taken and cannot wait to get my look book complete! I love the clothes that I designed for this season, they all have a mermaid, sea-like feel. So fresh and bright! Some of my favourite pieces so far are in this new collection. I’ve used lots of shades of blues and greens, and metallics to really enhance that shimmery effect that you get from the sea and fish scales.

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A few pictures for a sneak peek!

I really must learn to rest more but my mind is always ticking away and thinking of what to do next! Its crazy! I’m off to bed now as I have a busy day in the salon tomorrow! Need as much energy as I can get. Night, night!

Big love,

Kelly x

You can view my current collection on my website www.kellysimpkin.com and follow me on twitter @Kelly_Simpkin

12 July
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Low white blood cells and memories of our sunny Henley Regatta!

Hello lovelies,

How has your week been?

I have been cooped up in bed most of this week due to a significant drop in my White Blood cells. Normal levels of WBC is four to ten and mine is just one point six! Not good. As a result I have swollen glands, mouth ulcers and feel so weak. I have to stay at home and rest. I try to do a little internet browsing and social media for my business but it just completely wears me out. So forgive me if this weeks post is a little shorter than usual! Has anybody else suffered a drop in WBC due to Lupus or any medications? There are so many complications and side effect with this disease and the medications for it. Its amazing how serious a small cut can be if you have basically no immune system. I have a small cut at the side of my finger nail, which has become infected, and due to my immune system being so low at the moment (low white blood count) I cannot even take antibiotics! I have to be careful that the infection does not start to travel around my body….scary!!

Anyway, more pleasant things to talk about! Last week we had a mini ‘Jump’ reunion at the Henley Regatta. It was our first time to the Regatta, and Henley come to think of it, and it was beautiful. The weather was stunning and the place was gorgeous. Previous to the event we were sent tickets, car park badges etc and also the dress code. Oh my god, I didn’t realise how strict it was! The ladies had to wear a dress with the hem line past their knee! Anything above will not be allowed entry. Now being five foot, nine and a half (don’t forget the half!!), its not easy to find a dress that has a hem line below the knee but is not frumpy looking. Unless you go for a pencil skirt, which is too tight to wear in heat like last week, you can be a little stuck! Or at least I was. I had this lovely ‘tea party’ style dress from Betsy Johnson that I was planing to wear but it was just on the knee. Nicky was ensuring me that It will be ok and I cannot surely be that strict – can it? I was a little nervous so I took a back up with me. A long maxi dress from my online market place (shewearsacrwon.com) by 4G by Gizia. I am so glad that I did!! As we arrived and drove the car into the car park I was checking out all of the other outfits on show. There were quite a lot of long dresses (I guess people had the same problem as me?) and other than that, everyone had a dress that was just below the knee. Now I was panicking but pleased that I had my maxi! I made a quick outfit change in the car park and could now relax!

After a pleasant lunch with fellow jumpers, we headed off to a private enclosure to watch the races. Pimms and champagne were on tap (not for me as this was when I was starting to feel unwell unfortunately) and the boats were passing. Sir Steve Redgrave was so kind to organise for us all to go out on a boat. We took turns and each experienced the Regatta ‘Track’. It was so lovely, so English!

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Jason Gale, Nicky, Sinitta, Henry Conway and myself!

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Nicky, me and Sir Steve!

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Aww, me and Tash (Natasha Hamilton) looking fabulous with her bump!

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Me showing off my fav Stephen Webster ring!

I absolutely loved our day at Henley and hope to return there soon, it’s such a wonderful setting.

I must go and get some more rest now as I can feel my temperature rising. Hopefully I will have some more white blood cells when we next speak!

Take care bunnies!

Big love,

Kelly x

@kelly_simpkin

check out my website www.kellysimpkin.com

30 June
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Mallorca Spending spree, Shh we’re in a library!

Hello beauties,

It’s been a while since we last spoke, I have been mega busy and away in sunny Mallorca!

Nicky has a place there so during the summer we are backwards and forwards spending lots of time with our friends that live on the Island. We are so lucky to have friends with boats and we get to go out with them at least three times a week! Its amazing! We usually go to a little bay called Porto Vells and eat at a beach side restaurant. Its nothing fancy but great food and we can sit and drink white sangria in the warm sun! The sea and beach is beautiful there, you would think that you were on a Caribbean Island!

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There is always a crowd of us and it is such fun!

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Our Friend Uli with the girls! Aka Charlie’s Angels!

Whilst in Mallorca I always have a bit of a shopping spree in Palma town. I tend to head for Zara as, in my opinion,  it’s a great place for basic staple pieces that you can mix up with more expensive items and no one would ever know! I have been looking for some silk blouses to wear tied up in a knot at the front. I love this 40′s look and its one that I sport often! I found some in Zara that were pretty good quality for the money, and that would get me out of trouble! If I wear a lace top or a camisole sometimes I just need a little extra cover up as I feel the cold! They also are nice tied with high waisted trousers and a fancy bra underneath.

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I also spotted this stripy number that I thought was very cute! Again, a dress that doesn’t necessarily shout Zara and pair with the right accessories and you can make it look very expensive! I would wear with flat ballet pumps during the day and dress up with a pair of wedges for a summers evening! Perfect Wimbledon dress!

rsz_img_4962-2Last week Nicky and I attended the launch of the new club on St Martins Lane – the Library. It was such a packed event that I didn’t really get to see the place itself! We barely got past the entrance and bumped into so many faces that we knew! We saw our friend Jonathan Ross and had a catch up over a glass of bubbly with him!

rsz_img_4944I was wearing my desert dress in Royal Pink and had so many compliments! Always good to hear good words about my own collection! Makes me feel so proud.

This week we are off the the Henley Regatta so I will tell all next time. I am trying to find a dress that ticks all of the right boxes on the strict dress code! Wish me luck!

Enjoy your week and lets hope the sun shines!

Big love,

Kelly x

@kelly_simpkin

www.kellysimpkin.com

05 June
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Butterfly Ball and tea with the Queen!

My holiday feels far in the distance now. i’m fully back into the swing of London living, the weather and work!

We’ve been pretty busy and I just don’t know where the time is going? June already….half way through 2014! Unreal!

Aside from working hard with my label, Kelly Simpkin London, getting the final SS15 pieces ready, our social lives have been busy as usual.

Our first event since we got home was the Cauldwell Children’s Charity, Butterfly Ball. This is such an amazing event. The Cauldwell Children Charity provide equipment, therapy, treatment and support services to disabled children and their families. I can honestly say that I don’t think I’ve ever been to a ball that raised more money. It was fantastic! A total of £2.5 million was raised in one evening! We had a great table including friends – Sinitta, Simon Cowell, Melinda Messenger and Emeli Sandé. The evening was truly star studded with Peter Andre as host and headline entertainment from non other than Kylie Minogue!

I was wearing a gorgeous green dress from PPQ London. I cannot tell you how many compliments I had on the dress, I felt a million dollars!

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So out next event was the opening of the new Gina store and 60th anniversary in Mount Street. I had no idea that Gina had been going for so long!! The store is absolutely stunning with a beautiful dove grey silk carpet! The store had a glittering tunnel that led through to a showcase of iconic pieces. Shoes that had been worn by Kylie Minogue and Madonna!

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Nicky and I arrive at Gina.

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Gorgeous summer sandals by Gina. 

Nicky and I were lucky enough to be invited to the Household Calvary Standards Parade  followed by a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace! How very exciting! I had to buy a hat for the occasion and searched many places from Fenwick to boutiques in Covent Garden. I ended up with a black organza hat from good old M&S. I did, however, customise this myself! I added some cream webbing, netting like fabric and two black flowers. I wanted to tie in with my outfit – a cream silk organza dress, with a tiny black polka dot, from Betsy Johnson with a black leather handbag and shoes. I also wore my Great Nan’s Vintage jacket to complete the look! Its not often that you get to wear a hat so I felt very special.

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At the garden party we drank tea, apple juice or iced coffee. We ate traditionally english sandwiches and the best cakes you have ever tasted! Truly Scrumptious! It was so amazing to be in the garden of Buckingham Palace and to see the Queen along with Prince Phillip, Princess Anne and Prince Harry. I have always been a true royalist so to see the Royal family that close, in their own environment was such an experience!

This week I visited my Professor for Lupus at the UCH. I am so pleased as I have been feeling much better since my holiday to Antigua. He had good news for me, my C3 levels in my blood have gone into normal territory for the first time ever!! This means that the cocktail of drugs that I am taking have finally kicked in and I am feeling the benefits! I have been exercising a little more which I believe have also helped me feel better. Today I am trying ‘Hot Yoga’ at Fierce Grace in Primrose Hill! Wish me luck! I will report back next week.

Until then, enjoy your weekend.

Big love,

Kelly x

check out my website ww.kellysimpkin.com and follow me on twitter @kelly_simpkin

 

Lupus C3 level

21 May
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Antiguan diary continued….

I hope you enjoyed the first instalment of my diary, here is the rest……

Day eight.

We awoke early and headed off to the gym, for a quick work out and a light breakfast, before meeting our boat driver and his assistant, Owen and Irwin. Today we were being taken out to a reef for some snorkelling and then onto Prickly Pear Island for brunch and swimming. The sea was a little choppy today so the snorkelling, for me, was a little scary! (I am a bit of a wimp when it comes to the sea!) Nicky dived straight in and I watched for a while, lounging on the back of the ‘Monteray’. After persuasion from the crew and Nicky I decided to give it a go. Wow! How amazing it was to see all of those fish! There were hundreds of them. Only about three or four species but so many! They were all around us. You didn’t really have to swim out to see anything, you could basically just stick you head into the sea! It was like Disney Land! A whole other world going on. Amazing! After returning from our fabulous trip onboard the ‘Monteray’, Nicky and I lazed by our pool floating on a lilo and watching a wedding take place in the distance. So romantic….

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Owen, Irwin and myself in front of the Monteray.

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Lounging on the boat.

Day nine.

Another early start – this time due to the fact that we were water skiing – no not me, Nicky had a session booked. I was going along to be the photographer! We met the skipper on the beach and jumped into the speed boat. A few minutes around the corner and we wherein Dickinson’s Bay. A super calm, flat bay perfect for water sports. After our energetic morning (taking photos is hard work!! haha!) we decided to stay in the privacy of our own villa and listened to music relaxing by the pool. We had another game of chess too!

Tonight we ate at the Cove, it is becoming a favourite with us. It’s probably something to do with the perfect setting, above the rocks, overlooking the sea with BlueWaters in the view to our left and the vast sea out in front of us. Not to mention the fabulous food and service!

Day ten.

We didn’t have the usual sunshine beaming into our bedroom this morning, it was looking a little grey outside? We wandered down to breakfast, taking our time today as it didn’t look like we would be missing any sun on the beach. It soon started raining, light at first then heavy rain and then a tropical storm! There was something quite cosy about it though, sitting in a bikini and a summer dress with it raining cats and dogs! As the rain seemed to not give in we decided to take a trip to St Johns again. A great day for wandering around the shops, picking up a few souvenirs! It was much quieter in own today as there was no cruise liner in. Cooler too, so perfect for exploring. We went into a local cafe for a drink to rehydrate – Hemingway’s. Such a cute place above the shops on a busy Antiguan street. It was a real hit with the locals and guys were coming in and their favourite drinks would be put in front of them without them saying a word to the waitress. I love places like that, a table reserved for you every day and your favourite drink served as soon as you walk in! A real life ‘Cheers’ bar!

Day eleven.

We woke to more rain today, it was still very warm but wet spells. We caught up with some friends over breakfast and we decided to take a road trip around the island as the weather was not that great. We drove towards the south taking in the sights of Jolly Harbour. We ended up at a trendy beach club called ‘Jacqui O’s’. As we arrived the sunshine was coming out and the heat rising. We sat down and had a much welcomed bottle of Rose wine! Lunch was delicious and we then move to the beach. It was pretty windy so every now and then we were exfoliated by the sand! It was like we were in the desert in a sand storm. The sea was pretty rough here too due to the wind, but at the same time that made it fun! We lay in the sun taking in the rays wondering if the rain was still falling at BlueWaters?

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On the beach at Jacqui O’s

Day twelve.

Today the rain had eased pretty much to nothing, a few clouds in the sky but overall a pretty nice day. We decided to stay by our pool today and catch up on a bit of fashion and gossip in the magazines. Nicky went sailing in the afternoon and I watched from our terrace. It really is paradise here….

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Day thirteen.

After the gym and a delicious breakfast of healthy porridge and fruit we headed to the beach for a walk hand in hand. The sea is so crystal clear at BlueWaters, just how I like it! Powder white sand under foot and the warm sun on our skin. Bliss! Back at the villa, Nicky was flower arranging with the Bourganvilla and we had vases full of it everywhere! There is so much around the resort in fabulous pink and oranges. We were having a chef come to cook for us this evening on our terrace so I think Nicky wanted to make an effort and make the house look even more special than it already was! Dinner was a tasty BBQ, prepared and cooked for us by head chef – Jason. We had mouth watering meats served with Corn, salads and spicy Caribbean sauces. I love a BBQ, deliciously healthy!

Day fourteen.

Oh boy, it was a hot one today. Absolutely burning! Trying to stay cool, I spent most of the day in the pool on a lilo and in the sea. Nicky was sailing quite a lot today and eventually persuaded me to try it. It was just a hobby cat sail boat but still pretty scary to me! I really am not in love with the sea when I can’t touch or see the bottom. I must be brave though – I thought! Nicky had been on at me the hole time to try this so I needed to shut him up! On with my life jacket and onto the boat. Not the most lady like manoeuvre to get on but I was on. I went with a friend that we had made, Zsa Zsa. Zsa has been sailing since a chid and knew exactly what she was doing. I felt safe. We started heading out towards Rock Cottage and it was clam and we moved slowly, this was day I thought! Once around Rock Cottage we needed to turn to come back the other way. In order to turn we had to sail into the wind to pick up speed. The sea was a little choppy out this far and waves were crashing over the side. I was now feeling a little nervous! Never the less, we got the speed that we needed and made the turn safely, ducking under the sail each time it changed sides. I can see why people get into this sailing lark but I am not too sure that t was for me! I was glad to be heading into the beach but also secretly pleased with myself for doing it! Also Nicky would stop nagging me now too!

Before dinner we had arrange a photo shoot on the beach with Gwen and Daniel. They wanted us pictured  by the Hugo tree. Nicky and I love to take pictures as the sun is setting, the light is so soft and thus makes the pictures look so professional. Some of the best shots of me have been taken by Nicky on the beach at this time of day!

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Our last evening meal was eaten at the Cove, our favourite. It was hard to imagine that we had now been at BlueWaters for 2 weeks – the time has flown by! We headed back to our home, for one last night, and watched the film ‘Gravity’ in bed – Well, Nicky fell asleep and I watched it!

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I can truly say that I have never been to any other resort where the staff are so friendly. Everybody remembers your name and nothing is too much trouble. We were looked after like a king and queen. It was truly magical. I will be recommending this hotel to everyone that I know and would absolutely love to return. Thank you BlueWaters! xx

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I hope you all enjoyed our stay at BlueWaters Antigua as much as we did! Thank you for reading my diary.

Catch up with you next week.

Big love,

Kelly x

@kelly_simpkin

 

08 May
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My Antiguan Diary …..

Hello again, it seems ages since I last blogged but its only a week! Must be something to do with being sooooo relaxed!

As I am away on holiday, in Antigua, I thought that I would keep a diary for you all to read! Here goes….

Day One.

We arrive in beautiful Antigua! After a great flight from London with British Airways we touch down on the island. Its only a short taxi to the final point and the aircraft doors are open! Wow, the heat just hit us both as we walked down the large steps onto the tarmac. It was hot with the sun beaming down and a warm breeze in the air!

We soon cleared customs and a porter at the airport had somehow miraculously picked out our luggage for us, all 6 pieces! How he knew it was ours I don’t know – hmmm?? He escorted us to outside the airport where we met our driver and were chauffeur driven to our hotel – BlueWaters.

Once inside the hotel lobby we were given a refreshing cold towel and a glass of Rum Punch (what else!). Anderson, the hotel manager, greeted us with a warm Caribbean welcome. Next we were taken to our room, or cottage I should say. This was the bit that I was waiting for! The photos looked outstanding on the website but I couldn’t wait to see it in person! So exciting! Turtle Cottage was enclosed in a cute white picket fence with bourganvilla creeping over its top. We opened the small wooden gate and there to meet us was Gwen, our concierge. Gwen gave us the grand tour and what a tour it was! This place was something special. Stunning! The great room was vast and finished to such a high standard. There was everything that we could possibly need on hand too. The master bedroom had the most spectacular view, as did most of the villa to be honest! We had our own private BBQ and area, pool and beach! We were in heaven! We soon unpacked and felt at home.

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Our gorgeous bedroom complete with four poster bed!

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Our lounge

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Our Pool

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Stunning view from Turtle Cottage.

Day two.

After quite an early night – Jet lag of course! – we had an early wake and headed down to the main part of the hotel for breakfast. It was a feast. Everything that you could have wished for was there, omelettes, fruit, pancakes, champagne, cereals and much more! Breakfast is our favourite meal of the day!

After breakfast we headed back to Turtle Cottage to relax by the pool. We love having the privacy of our own pool and the 180 degree view was great for creating a warm breeze.

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 How lovely this was, listening to the birds and the sea lapping at the beach down below us. Perfect. After lunch Nicky showed me how to play chess. I have never played in my life and he was teaching me which part could move where and so on. Once I thought I had the hang of it we kicked off my first ever game! Ok so Nicky did some 4 move special and had me in check mate as fast as I could blink, but hey, this was my first ever game! I think it was a little mean of him to play so hard straight away! Our second game, however, was a different story, I beat him! OK so he gave me a few little tips and probably missed a couple of vital moves that he could have made to beat me but I STIL WON!! That evening we ate at Bartley’s, one of the hotel restaurants. It was lovely, Italian food, but Nicky was almost asleep at the table. Home to bed for another early night!

Day three.

Wake up time was a little better today, we were getting into the swing of Caribbean time, and we started our day with a Pilates session. We set up in the great room and had my favourite Pilates DVD on! Even just ten minutes of this and I can feel that i’ve worked out. Today we just chilled by the beach and pool, taking in the fresh sea air. We played my second game of chess over afternoon tea – very quintessentially English! We spent our evening at The Cove restaurant with a setting on the rocks over the bay. Beautiful.

Day four.

It was time to see a little of the island, after breakfast we set off for English Harbour. English Harbour takes its name from the fact that the British Navy established its base of operations for the area during the eighteenth century. It is a wonderful historic sight full of sail boats and yachts. After our walk around the most famous part of the harbour, Nelsons Dockyard, we headed down to Pigeon beach for a bite to eat. We were booked at a place called Catherine’s, which was a spot that I can only describe as ‘Ibiza meets the Caribbean’. Such a chilled vibe. The food was delicious, mostly French with a Spanish twist! Something different!

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Day five.

Today was my cousin’s birthday back in the UK so I decided to write a message in the sand and send the photograph to her – she thought this was quite cute and original!

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What a canvas!

 Whilst walking along the beach I spotted some shells being washed up with, what looked like, beads attached to them. It was some kind of seaweed that had grown onto the shells. I found a way of using them a fashion accessories! New shoulder tassels….Michael Jackson style!

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Strike a pose!

This evening we went to the famous ‘Shirley Heights’ Sunday party. Overlooking English and Falmouth Harbour, the amazing panoramic view takes in its neighbouring islands of Guadalupe and Montserrat. This is the home to the most happening parties on the island. Steel bands playing, rum punch being served and the smell of a bbq in the air. That’s all before you even look at the view! Hundreds of people gather to watch the sunset. Its like Antigua’s answer to Cafe del Mar in Ibiza. Once the sun goes down, the live band kicks in and the party really gets going. We were lucky enough to see a whale in the sea just off of the cost below, I could not believe it!

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What a view!

Day six.

We experienced a cloudy day today, a little overcast, but to be honest is was much welcomed. The weather here is divine but boy is it hot! A day with intervals of sun was quite refreshing. Just relaxing by the pool, catching up on some gossip in my magazines and totally resting. We extended the relaxation into the evening and had room service! Yes I know, but room service here is unlike most other room services. We have the ‘great room’ with a table fit for eight people to dine from. Candles burning, music playing softly in the background, looking outside to a million stars in the clear sky…..so romantic!

Day seven.

Our day started with our regular trip to the gym before breakfast, we are so disciplined! ha ha! We followed with a trip to the Island’s capital, St Johns. Many souvenirs to buy from conch shells to cigars, T-shirts to Caribbean Rum. Our driver, Chamouy, was fantastic he gave us a whole history lesson on the island including soaking up the atmosphere of the back streets. He seemed to know everyone in town.

There was a cruise liner in today so the place was a little busy but this just added to the atmosphere. Everybody on the Island is so friendly, its nice to just talk to the locals and hang out!

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Stretching out after the gym!

I hope that you have enjoyed my first week in Antigua as much as I have. Believe me it is total paradise and I will definitely be returning. All of the staff are so friendly and nothing is too much for them. You couldn’t ask for any better!

I’ll catch up with you again next week for the second instalment of my Antiguan Diary……

Until then, take care.

Kelly x

p.s If you can’t wait until then, follow me on twitter for regular updates!

t: @kelly_simpkin

 

 

 

 

30 April
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Antigua bound!

 

And so it begins…… sitting in the BA lounge at Gatwick North Terminal. The sun is beaming through the window, now that the fog has burnt off, and I’ve just had my healthy bowl of porridge topped with raisins! The airport is super busy with business men and women, couples going off on their romantic trips and families with kids in tow. The holiday season has started.

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My view from the lounge!

I have everything packed – my new bikini’s, new floaty skirts, flip flops, sunscreen, virtually my whole summer wardrobe and a couple of hats to choose from! I like to have a choice when i’m away!!

Ive had extensions on my eyelashes so that I don’t need to worry about mascara when i’m around the pool. I had them done by Luxe Lash @luxelashlondon and they are fantastic! I have only really had extensions on my lashes twice before and I really didn’t like the feel. They were itchy and I could feel the glue on the lashes. As they stared to be come twisted and fall out I picked at some of them and, yes you’ve guessed it, pulled half of my own lashes out too! Not a good idea! These lashes are great, I can’t even feel anything on my own. I’ve had so many commets too!

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My lashes!

 

I cannot wait to get on the beach tomorrow, or even this afternoon given the time difference, and let the sun warm my pale skin! It feels like it been ages since i’ve been on a two week beach holiday – a proper one where you get waited on and  don’t need to worry about a thing!

I will be reporting to you from Antigua showing you all of the beautiful sights, the hotel, our room and of course my vast collection of bikini’s!

Until then, have a good day and chat soon! I’m off to fly!

 

Kelly xx

@Kelly_Simpkin

 

19 April
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Easter egg hunt, more bikinis and feeling poorly….

So last week I was looking for some brogues and I can confidently say that I have found a really great pair for a really great price! I ended up in Dune, not a shop that I usually go to but I will be going back for sure! The shoes are really reasonable and can look pretty damn high end. The brogues that I bought are white (for the summer!), although they have a greyish pinky tinge to them, and are made of super soft leather. They will be perfect with trousers, shorts, skirts and dresses! They cost £99 and are called Helen.

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As my holiday is drawing near I am still searching for a few extra additions to my swim wear wardrobe! I’m a sucker for swim wear, to me your bikini is your day outfit so I like to have a different one each day! Here are some of my fab finds….

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Sirena wrap top & Antibes ruched hipster. $94 (top) $85 (bottoms) by Vitamin A

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Tunnels Top $110 by Acacia

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Adriana €160

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Last Tuesday night Nicky and I attended the Baileys Easter Egg Hunt at Harvey Nichols. The launch for the world-first immersive theatre performance and dining experience. The audience will be immersed into a witty and playful world where they will join, follow and interact with a stellar cast, each on their own beguiling search for a Baileys Chocolate Luxe Easter Egg. We drank the new Baileys drink which was delicious but I could only manage a few sips as it was quite rich and chocolately! We caught up with our dear friend Brix Smith-Start who was looking fab as always!

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Other guests included Helen Flanagan, Pixie Lott and Olivia Inge.

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I have been really suffering with my Lupus this week. My joints have been hurting so bad and I am suffering from extreme fatigue. Its horrible to wake up in the morning, after eight or nine hours sleep and still feel exhausted! I am really struggling to work in the salon and do my clients, I just feel like laying in bed all day. Its so miserable, I can’t tell you. Nothing that I do seems to help. When the pain is there I just have to ride it and hope that it goes away. I swim as I feel that will keep my joints supple and also keeps me a little fit. I would love to go to one of these crazy boot camps, that are all of the rage, but I just know that my joints would not be able to cope. Even just ten lunges on each leg leaves me in pain the following day. One of the hardest things to sea with is the fact that I look fine. I guess it’s a blessing as I would rather look well that sick, but sometimes, when i’m hurting all over I wish I didn’t look so healthy! It sounds a strange thing to say but people look at me with that “theres nothing wrong with you!” type of look because, quite frankly, I look fine. Anybody with Lupus will know exactly what I am saying here! No one but Nicky and my family see me struggling to get out of bed in the mornings or not being able to brush my hair as my fingers are too swollen to hold a hair brush. This disease completely sucks and it frustrates me that there is no cure. I have been thinking of some other ‘alternative’ help that I can take to relieve some pain and deal with some of the other symptoms, such as depression and fatigue. I was thinking of reflexology? A friend of mine has recently been having some health problems and she has found great relief in this. It has helped her immensely. Has anybody with Lupus tried this approach before? If so I would love to hear from you! Give me all of your reflexology stories!

I am so looking forward to my holiday, I think my body is telling me that I need a rest! In less than two weeks I will be writing my blog from a warm beach in Antigua!! Cannot wait! I will be sure to show you some of the gorgeous new bikinis that I have brought too!

Until next time, have a lovely, hoppy Easter! I hope the Easter Bunny is good to you and try not to eat too many eggs!

Big love,

Kelly x

t: @kelly_simpkin

08 April
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Easter comes early, Grecian dresses and a jam packed photo-shoot!

Hi guys,

I hope you are doing fine and had some fun since we last spoke? I certainly have! What a busy week its been!

Meetings, haircuts, photo-shoots and more! I am desperate for a rest! Good job I have my holiday in a few weeks – cannot wait! New bikinis on order and the healthy eating plan continues. As I type, I am eating a late breakfast of porridge, sliced banana and honey. I actually really enjoy being healthy. For me its so important what you put in to your body. No one looks that good if they live on junk food and never exercise. It’s just not possible.

So my week kicked off with an Easter, Afternoon Tea at The Dorchester Hotel. The event was held by Shooting Star Chase Charity, one which Nicky and I support year on year. The charity is a children’s hospice charity for children with life-limiting conditions. It supports the children as well as their families and are there for them 365 days a year. Its such an amazing charity and I am so glad that Nicky and I can help in some way. Shooting Star Chase is a wonderful organisation that do the most amazing things for families with poorly children. It is supported by many famous faces whom, most of which, come along to the tea party to talk to the children and have pictures taken. We were even all given an Easter egg named ‘Eric’ after Simon Cowell’s baby – so cute!

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Made In Chelsea star Hugo Taylor and Natalie Joel

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Myself and Nicky leaving the tea party.

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Simon Cowell attends the afternoon tea every year.

We also attended the Soldiering On Awards last week along with a few of the ‘Jump’ contestants. It’s always nice to catch up with them – we really made such good friends out in Austria! Joe McElderry was performing, Donal MacIntyre was presenting with Anne Diamond and our table consisted of others from the ‘Jump’ team and a couple with their gorgeous dog!  The event is the main Soldiering On Through Life Trust event of the year and we heard some amazing stories from the soldiers about their lives after battle. It really was moving and just makes you appreciate what you have. Those guys risk their own lives to keep us safe. Truly tremendous. The dress code was Black tie and I wore a powder pink dress that I bought in the states before custominsing it myself! It was quite floaty and had a massive train so I shorted the train and tacked in some of the excess chiffon to give me a waist and more shape to the dress. The gown is finished off with a number of flowers around the bust, delicate and subtle. It really is quite ‘Grecian’. I wore my hair in soft floaty curls to complement the look.

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We didn’t have a late night as the following morning we had to be up bright and early for a photo-shoot for my AW14 collection to feature on my new website, kellysimpkin.com. I was so so tired and could have done with more sleep. My joints were aching and my tablets were not having any effect at all. My Lupus is really hard to live with at times, I just want to live a normal life and feel ok after seven or eight hours sleep but I don’t. It doesn’t matter how much sleep that I have, I am still tired and ache somewhere. Never-the-less, I don’t let it stop me! What a day we had, 18 different looks all of which were amazing! My make up artist, Louisa Day was absolutely fabulous and the photographer, Rachell Smith was out of this world! I cannot wait to get the final images back, I will be sure to show you too! I did get a few behind the scene shots to share with you now – just for a taster!

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Make up – check!

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Looking serious and into it!photo-9

Adjusting!

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Quick hairstyle change by Nicky.

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Thats 70′s look!

Kelly’s Collectables

I am looking for some white brogues or loafers this week for Kelly’s Collectables.  I want something that will go with trousers, jeans as well as dresses. A flat shoe with a small block heel is a timeless classic that will always shout sophistication. A great staple to add to my growing collection. I always like to be comfy as well as looking good too! I will report back next week on what I find! Let me know if you have any ideas! I will probably head to Selfridges or Topshop as they will both have a huge selection I am sure!

Thats all from me this week, I’m off to discuss mittens with my leather factory! Have a super day and enjoy the sunshine!

Big love,

Kelly x

Follow me on twitter @kelly_simpkin

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