“Blink” Beauty: Heidi Klein and the Mystic Tan

April 23rd, 2015

Never have I ever had a spray tan. Call me crazy but the thought of standing in paper knickers and a shower cap in front of a stranger whilst they smother your every nook and cranny with a sticky fake tan solution just wasn’t high on my ‘fun things to do’ list. Uhm, why didn’t anyone tell me it didn’t have to be like that?!? Heidi Klein very kindly invited me to try their Mystic Tan treatment, promising me that it was actually a painless, humiliation-free experience so I decided that it was time for me to pop my fake tanning cherry!

Heidi Klein, Westbourne Grove

Heidi Klein, Westbourne Grove

After giving myself a thorough exfoliation, as advised by the HK team, I hit their Westbourne Grove store. Walking in to Heidi Klein is like walking in to some wonderful parallel reality where it is always Summer and you are always about to head off to St Barts/ step aboard your super-yacht/ honeymoon in the Seychelles… Usually I find that soothing but this time I felt a little nervous (not helped by my brother sending me a picture of a very orange oompa loompa as an example of my potential ‘after’ look!).

Heidi Klein, Westbourne Grove

Heidi Klein, Westbourne Grove

A member of HK staff showed me through a secret door in the back of the store and talked me through the whole Mystic Tan process. I got to choose a level of colour (I chose the palest as anything would be a huge improvement on my milky whiteness!). I also got to choose an additional scent to offset the inherant fake tan ‘biscuityness’ so I chose coconut (tres Hawaiian Tropic). I was then told that the paper knickers were optional (apparently some people like to be able to see a tan line), to pop on the shower cap and to coat any dry skin areas with a moisturiser to stop the tan looking darker in those spots. I was talked through how to stand in the booth, what commands to expect, and what to do once the spray was completed. Then she said goodbye… Uhm, where was she off to? What about the humiliation I had been anticipating?

This is the best bit about a Mystic Tan. It’s just you and the booth baby! What a revelation! I got in. I stood this way, I stood that way, I tried to remember to breathe when not being sprayed in the face…

So, as I am now obviously a Mystic Tanning expert now I shall share with you some pros and cons…

Pros: no humiliation, a rather pleasant aroma, swift, not sticky when dry and I could dress about 5 minutes after being sprayed, a good even colour, I got repeatedly told I looked very well, I did not look anything like an oompa loompa.

Cons: I forgot that I should have made sure my palms were covered in that moisturiser, the biscuit smell did make itself known after about 3 hours, after about 5 days the tan became patchy and I looked a little on the grubby side in places (all the more reason to go back for more!).

If you’d like to try this experience for yourself here are the details:

Heidi Klein: 174 Westbourne Grove, Notting Hill , London W11 2RW

To book an appointment call 0207 243 5665

Price:  £27.50 per spray

Many thanks to Heidi Klein for the experience. For more Blink London beauty posts, just look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Accessories: more about Larissa Hadjio

April 23rd, 2015
Larissa Hadjio's NY Trunk Show Invitation #SincerelyTommy #Brooklyn #BlinkLondon

Larissa Hadjio’s NY Trunk Show Invitation

If you loved the Larissa Hadjio accessories that we showed you in yesterday’s post, and if you are based in the US of A, then we have some exciting news for you. Larissa is holding a series of trunk shows in May, starting at Sincerely, Tommy in Brooklyn, and then she moves on to San Francisco, LA and Miami.

Larissa Hadjio #Accessoriesdesigner

Larissa Hadjio

You will have the opportunity to meet Larissa herself and to see the beauty of her collection up close and in detail, from our favourite four legged friend, the ‘Snowy’ clutch to her larger items like the drawstring ‘Fefe’ bags, trimmed with goat hair. What a great opportunity to meet an innovative and exciting new name on the British fashion design scene, and a great chance to update your accessories look too!

Larissa Hadjio accessories

Larissa Hadjio accessories

Fez satchels, Larissa Hadjio

Fez satchels, Larissa Hadjio

Fefe Drawstring shoulder bag, Larissa Hadjio

Fefe Drawstring shoulder bag, Larissa Hadjio

Larissa Hadjio 'Snowy' bags

Larissa Hadjio ‘Snowy’ bags

Larissa, come back soon and let us know when there might be a London trunk show too!

For more great accessories posts, take a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Accessories: Larissa Hadjio, AW’15

April 21st, 2015

Larissa Hadjio, AW'15 collection

We have featured Larissa Hadjio previously on the Blink London blog (read up here). I am a huge fan of her approach to designing and producing accessories. Her work perfectly balances humour, creativity and craftsmanship. We always look forward to seeing the new collection additions shown at London Fashion Week, and the AW’15 presentation was quite the treat.

Alongside the stunning vanity style case (oh to be sophisticated enough to own one of these!) that we have coveted for several seasons, were a few brilliant new additions. Stand outs for me were the brilliant ‘Paw’ bag, crafted from ultra soft leather and detailed with golden studs.

Larissa Hadjio AW'15 Paw bag, LFW

Larissa Hadjio AW’15 Paw bag, LFW

Larissa Hadjio AW'15 Paw bag, LFW

Larissa Hadjio AW’15 Paw bag, LFW. Looking gorgeous in white too.

We also fell for the sweetly simplistic ‘Snowy’ and ‘Copper’ clutch bags which are small but perfectly formed, standing on four little feet. The white version, ‘Snowy’ is geniusly 3D printed in acrylic. ‘Copper’ is hand-beaten and hand-crafted in, surprise, copper! So you get the same structured look but interpreted in two very different materials, created in two very different ways.

Larissa Hadjio AW'15 Snowy and Copper box bags, LFW

Larissa Hadjio AW’15 Snowy and Copper box bags, LFW

Larissa Hadjio AW'15 Snowy box bag, LFW

Larissa Hadjio AW’15 Snowy box bag, LFW

For more fashion accessories, just click here. For lots from London Fashion Week, then this is where you should click.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Music: Action Bronson feat Chance the Rapper, ‘Baby Blue’

April 20th, 2015

I would usually give a little background to the artist we have chosen to feature. I might also give you all some insightful critique on the track. Not today. Today we are going to let the unique talent that is Action Bronson speak for himself with this boundary crossing, PC smashing, smart, stupid and brilliant track that is ‘Baby Blue’.

Have a happy Monday!

For more great music, then take a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Retail: O’Dell’s

April 17th, 2015
Tom, founder of O'Dell's store on Calvert Avenue, East London

Tom, founder of O’Dell’s store on Calvert Avenue, East London

You have to hit East London up on a regular basis as the speed of change with shopping and social options will make your head spin. On one such foray we came across O’Dell’s. This wee gem of a store is conjoined with Luna and Curious (another Blink fav) on Calvert Avenue (running between Arnold Circus and Shoreditch High Street). This compact space is filled with beautifully crafted, unique and innovative products that have been selected with care by owner, Tom O’Dell (yes,yes).

O’Dell’s taste seems to be for the natural, functional and honest- along with a large serving of good design and refined finishing. Much of the product is UK made by small producers, like the beautiful wool rug hanging in the shot above. Although not exclusively for the boys, if you are stuck with what to buy for a fella in your life, then this is a great place to head. Here are some of our favourites that are available in-store and in the O’Dell’s online shop

From O'Dell's: Made in London copper planter by Pikku Potin

From O’Dell’s: Made in London copper planter by Pikku Potin

From O'Dell's: Honest - Yuzu candle

From O’Dell’s: Honest – Yuzu candle

From O'Dell's: Outpost Large Leather Key Ring

From O’Dell’s: Outpost Large Leather Key Ring

From O'Dell's: Rough Diamond Cage - Old Gold

From O’Dell’s: Rough Diamond Cage – Old Gold

For more retail news, have a look here.

 

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” New designers: Georgia Hardinge, AW’15

April 14th, 2015
Georgia Hardinge 'Fragment' collection, AW'15. #LFW #BlinkLondon

Georgia Hardinge ‘Fragment’ collection, AW’15

After watching that Dior video about the making of the latest couture collection, I have a new respect for beautifully pleated garments. I think that may have been what initially drew me to the Georgia Hardinge showcase at London Fashion Week. Her collection, titled ‘Fragment’, features some stunningly and innovatively pleated styles blended in with sharp cut and graphically detailed pieces. This collection feels both tough and uncompromising as well as soft and subtle. It’s that brilliant contrast that drives this young British designer’s signature take on modern femininity.

We asked Georgia about the inspiration behind “The fragment collection” and here’s her response:

“The collection is based on mirroring, reflection and shattered fragments of glass and distorted objects. The pleats and print designs are a reflection of shattered glass and we play with this concept throughout the look book.”

 

Georgia Hardinge 'Fragment' collection, AW'15. #LFW #BlinkLondon

Georgia Hardinge ‘Fragment’ collection, AW’15. This skirt is my personal favourite piece

Georgia Hardinge 'Fragment' collection, AW'15

Georgia Hardinge ‘Fragment’ collection, AW’15

Georgia Hardinge 'Fragment' collection, AW'15

Georgia Hardinge ‘Fragment’ collection, AW’15

For more from London Fashion Week, look here. For more new designer labels to be inspired by, look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Music: Lianne la Havas and A.O.S.O.O.N

April 13th, 2015
Lianne La Havas, she's back with a new album this summer! (image with thanks to Pinterest), Blink London

Lianne La Havas, she’s back with a new album this summer! (image with thanks to Pinterest)

Last night I was invited to a small but perfectly formed gig at Shoreditch House. It was an immediate ‘yes please!’ as the artist performing was Lianne La Havas who I have been missing since I feel head over heels for her and her exquisite musical talent, through her debut album ‘Is Your Love Big Enough’. Lianne is a mighty musical talent wrapped up in a teeny, charming, shy, sweet and beautiful package. Armed just with her guitar and a mic she absolutely wowed with some tracks from her first album as well as some teasers from the new album which is chalked to drop this Summer. I for one cannot wait.

Before Lianne came on we were treated to a set from South London duo, A.O.S.O.O.N. (that’s ‘AlotOfSomethingOutOfNothing’). The combination of Marisa Hylton (vocals and guitar) and Manny Folorunso (bass) was a stripped back, honest, funky and deep. I really love their sound and hope that you will too. Today’s #MusicMonday is one of the tracks we heard last night, ‘Under’. This is from an EP that they dropped late last year called ‘What is This About’. Fingers crossed we’ll see them popping up on this Summer’s festival circuit.

AOSOON, swiped from their Facebook page

AOSOON, swiped from their Facebook page

For more great music, just click here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Events: Learn with Us

April 10th, 2015
Blink London's 'Intro to Blogging and Social Media' workshop, learn about blogging, social media, London based blogging class, fashion blogging, lifestyle blogging, beauty blogging

Blink London’s ‘Intro to Blogging and Social Media’ workshop

Are you a blogging and social media novice looking for guidance? Then you are more than welcome to join us on our workshop as we still have some spaces available on our May and June dates for our ‘Introduction to Blogging and Social Media’ course. You can look here to find out all of the details of our London based workshop.

Here’s what one of the previous attendees had to say about it:

“I was lucky enough to do the Blink London blogging course recently and it was one of the most interesting, informative, eye opening and fun courses that I have attended in a long time! Can’t wait to set up my blog.”

 

If you have a business that would benefit from a stronger and more informed approach to your social media strategy, then I’d be delighted to work with you too. I recently delivered this workshop to the Fix Up Look Sharp team from CLIC Sargent and this is what they had to say:

“As novices to social media and creative blogging, Lucy’s inspiring workshop gave us a lots of practical ways to engage in the blogosphere more confidently. Her energy and enthusiasm for the subject left us feeling excited and motivated! Can’t recommend this workshop enough for novices like us! Clare Cox, Fundraising Special Projects Lead, CLIC Sargent

 

Drop us an email to info@blinklondon.com and don’t forget to ask about any special offers!

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Lifestyle: Tinder-itus (A guide to avoiding shit Tinder dates)

April 7th, 2015

Tinder-itus (also known as ‘shockingly bad date syndrome’) is becoming a more broadly recognised condition by the day, so we thought we would help you out with a few tips on how to avoid it… and we are talking from some hard won personal experience here!

Yup, I popped my Tinder cherry way back when this app first came out. Those were the heady days when it was (dare I say) cool, only slightly creepy, and pretty much completely a giggle. It was during this time that I actually made a hasty, late night right swipe decision that ended up in a year of dating one of the most gorgeous blokes I have ever had the honour of considering my beau.

Well, rather annoyingly we have parted ways and I decided to try good old Tinder again. Wowsers there has been quite the change while I have been away. My jaw regularly literally drops at the oddness, fruitiness and unabashed cheating that pops up. There are far too many “are you serious?!?” moments going on, and that’s with the ones I firmly swipe left (after gawping at the shocking contents of their profile obvs)! I do swipe right fairly often, match up with a few of those (seemingly) straight up and unattached men. Heck, some of them even make contact! By the time you’ve been through this sifting of prospects, you’d think you might be in a pretty good place to meet some decent gentlemen right? WRONG! Oh, I have recently endured some of the worst dates of my whole dating life.

In order to help you learn from my mistakes, I’ve pulled together this handy guide…

Crazy eyes, generally mean one thing... It's not complicated! Siamese cat image swiped with thanks from Pinterest

Tinder Guide Point 1) Crazy eyes, generally mean one thing… It’s not complicated! (Cat image swiped with thanks from Pinterest)

Tinder Guide Point 1) The eyes are the windows to our soul it’s said. With that in mind, if his eyes look like they are on the deranged side of things, then it’s highly likely he’ll be a nut job. The same goes if his eyes look stoned, vacant, or over-stimulated. Trust me on this.

Tinder Guide Point 2) heis profile shots are mainly of him in his pants (as illustrated by this 1970s Wolsey mens underwear ad swiped from Pinterest)

Tinder Guide Point 2) his profile shots are mainly of him in his pants (as illustrated by this gorgeously sexy 1970s Wolsey mens underwear ad swiped from Pinterest)

Tinder Guide Point 2) If most of his shots are of him in his smalls, then don’t expect him to intend on taking you out for a nice dinner somewhere posh, giving you flowers, woo’ing you sweetly and wanting to know all about your character. This is especially true if his Tinder pics are ONLY of him in his well worn knickers and his head is not even in the shot…

Tinder Guide point 3) there are shots of him with what appears to be his significant other, even if he is hot 70's Rod Stewart (image swiped with thanks from Pinterest)

Tinder Guide point 3) there are shots of him with what appears to be his significant other, even if he is hot 70’s Rod Stewart (image swiped with thanks from Pinterest)

Tinder Guide Point 3) that lovely lady he has his arms around in several of the shots? She’s not his work colleague. Oh, and if he has his arms around this lady while wearing those pants from point 2 then girl, you had better be feeling open-minded…

Tinder Guide Point 4) he is toting a gun (image swiped from Pinterest with thanks)

Tinder Guide Point 4) he is toting a gun (image swiped from Pinterest with thanks)

Tinder Guide Point 4) Put the gun down. It is not an enticing phallic symbol. It is a scary weapon. If you think this makes you look macho fella, you probably also have scary eyes (see point 1). Girls, you need a man with an arsenal of compliments, good manners and social graces. Not an actual arsenal.

Tinder Guide Point 5) Men and their cars (Tyrone Power with his Duesenberg swiped with thanks from Pinterest)

Tinder Guide Point 5) Men and their cars (Tyrone Power with his Duesenberg swiped with thanks from Pinterest)

Tinder Guide Point 5) If there is a shot of him with a posh car, it’s not his car. He just walked past it and got his mate to take a picture for him. If there is a picture JUST of his car, who is he trying to pull? Jeremy Clarkson??? This man will spend more time buffing his hubcaps than buffing anything of yours. You get me?

Tinder Guide point 6) the crowd shot (image swiped with thanks from Pinterest)

Tinder Guide point 6) the crowd shot (image swiped with thanks from Pinterest)

Tinder Guide Point 6)  all of his Tinder pics feature a crowd. You may have every hope that he’s the hot one. Believe me, he is not. You can either swipe left or hope to match just so you can ask him for the contact details of his mate second from the left…

 

So I hope that my simple six step guide helps all of you single ladies out there to avoid some dating app pitfalls. And Tinder men, pull your blooming fingers out!

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Events: Fix Up and more!

March 31st, 2015

Huge apologies that we have been a bit absent on the Blink London blog for the past week. We did leave you with a stunning #MusicMonday from Lionbabe to keep you entertained in the meantime though, as well as lots of pretty Instagram pictures, tweets and FB updates. It’s just been a particularly hectic time here at Blink Towers.

Today’s post is to get you in the loop of what we have been up to as well as giving ourselves a right big pat on the back for all that’s been achieved by the team in a very short amount of time.

Fix Up Look Sharp in aid of CLIC Sargent, cancer charity, supporting childern with cancer, upcycling fashion, sustainable fashion

Fix Up Look Sharp in aid of CLIC Sargent

So first off, last week we spent the day working with CLIC Sargent’s Fix Up Look Sharp team. We first met these guys at the official launch event for this brilliant upcycling fashion venture and were blown away by their commitment, resourcefulness and creativity. We were delighted to have the opportunity to work with them and support their efforts to raise more money for the CLIC Sargent, the UK’s leading cancer charity for children and young people, and their families. CLIC Sargent provide much needed clinical, practical, financial and emotional support.

Ruth, the creative driving force behind the Fix Up Look Sharp label, sustainable fashion, fashion designer, upcycled fashion, CLIC Sargent, childrens cancer charity

Ruth, the creative driving force behind the Fix Up Look Sharp label

The Fix Up team, most of them voluntary, spent the day with us last week so that we could work with them on how they could further spread the word about their fabulous upcycled, sustainable fashion collection to a wider audience through blogging and social media. I can’t wait to see the results. Guys, I will be checking up on you!

Blink London's 'Intro to Blogging and Social Media' workshop, learn about blogging, social media, London based blogging class, fashion blogging, lifestyle blogging, beauty blogging

Blink London’s ‘Intro to Blogging and Social Media’ workshop

Actually this proved a great practice run for our ‘Intro to Blogging and Social Media’ workshop that we are running for the first time this year from tonight. We’ll be at Parlour Kensal Green for our sold out session so there has been lots of prep to do to make sure this runs perfectly. You can read more about it here. We still have spaces on our May 5th and 6th session so email us if you’d like to come along.

I’m also giving at talk about social media at the rather fabulous Electric House, so if you are a member please do come along and listen. It’s only an hour so you can all feel empathetic workshop attendees who are with me 7 hours!

Know your @ from your #, my talk at Electric House

Know your @ from your #, my talk at Electric House

On top of all of this we have also been overhauling our reporting service. As the fashion world is becoming more globalised, and there is more and more free information available on the interweb, the fashion industry’s support services, like Blink London, have had to redirect their efforts and find new ways to work with clients.

'Blink Instants', Blink London's brand new monthly publication, fashion forecasting, fashion inspiration, gashion news, British fashion,

‘Blink Instants’, Blink London’s brand new monthly publication

Blink Instants is a brand new approach for us, moving away from simply retail reporting and in to something that is far more unique, exciting and diverse. This has been created with the fashion womenswear market in mind but the diversity of content means that this could be a wonderful tool for any creative industry or service (interior design, product design, visual merchandising teams etc).

We are planning this report will only be available as a soft copy to capitalize on the nimble, swift and ‘instant’ way we work as a small boutique-style service. We are keeping everything crossed as this is a big change for us. As soon as we have more to share with you we will be updating our The Reports page so keep an eye out for that.

So I hope that you’ll forgive us for leaving you hanging, but we will be resuming your usual fabulous service on the blog very, very soon!

Enjoy! Lucy