Blink Travel: Vintage Paris

One thing I always make sure there is time for is a quick flit to one of Paris’ fabulous flea markets, or ‘marche aux puces’. My favourite has to be Porte de Vanves in the south of Paris. Its smaller, more casual and most importantly, you are more likely to find a bargain here than at the mega marche that is the far more famous Clignancourt in the north.

You can head to Vanves on Saturdays and Sundays. Its a true treasure trove of wonderful vintage paraphernalia. Ensure you are fully cashed up as you will certainly be parting with some money! In particular here, there is always exceptional vintage clothing and accessories, wonderful paintings, china and glass. Here are some shots that we hope will help share what we saw on this visit. I got slightly obsessed by all of the crazy little dolls and their wonderful outfits, but none of them made it home with me though!

Porte de Vanves, Paris

Porte de Vanves, Paris

Porte de Vanves, Paris

Porte de Vanves, Paris

Porte de Vanves, Paris

Porte de Vanves, Paris

Porte de Vanves, Paris

Porte de Vanves, Paris

For more posts about our travels, just click here. Enjoy!

Streetstyle: ‘In Fashion’ Focus, part 2

Following on from yesterday’s post, here’s a couple of more East London lookers for you. Pulling these posts together has really made me wonder what ‘In Fashion’ means to me too. I think it might be more important to be comfortable in your own skin, rocking your own style and expressing your personality, but there is certainly a lot of comfort in looking ‘the part’, keeping up with the prevailing trends and ensuring you don’t stand too far out from the crowd. I suppose that the trick is pulling that off while keeping a lot of your own personality in there too…

Bartek, Brick Lane (thisblogisreserved.com) "I don't care about fashion. I just mix vintage with new. I try not to take myself too seriously. It works- today 4 people asked me if they could take my picture."

Dulia and Benjamin, Brick Lane Dulia: "We don't really think about fashion as such. I think we're trying to have fun with what we wear. Of course we're influenced by trends, but only to a certain extent." Benjamin: "It's funny because I think that subconsciously we always kind of match. Look at your socks and my trousers!"

For more “Blink” streetsyle, just click here. Enjoy!

Blink Events: Christmas Shopping Diary Dates

Hello dear readers, my inbox has seen an influx of great shopping event invitations and I wanted to share the joy with you. If you are looking for unique Christmas gifts and to have lots of fun while buying them, then get these dates in your diaries…

Firstly we have the Kensal Flea. The inaugural boutique flea market takes place on Saturday 27 November at the Paradise by Way of Kensal Green, 19 Kilburn Lane London W10; from 12pm until 5pm. We’ll be looking out for some wonderfully stylish self gifting from our friends, Tallulah and Hope. There will also be vintage homewares and beautiful jewellery, delightful things for mothers and babies as well as the men in your life.

Once you have exhausted yourself in a shopping frenzy you can chill out in the bar or restaurant while listening to some great tunes from DJs Russ Cuban, Mark Rae and Barry Ashworth (Dub Pistols) and 6Music’s Shaun Keaveny is even hosting the charity karaoke room.

Next, on the 3rd December until 18th we have the Orange Dot Christmas Market at 54 Tavistock Place, Bloomsbury, London, WC1. A perfect place to find a gift for the arty members of your family and perfect for you if late night shopping, gallery viewing and mulled wine sipping sounds like the ideal shopping scenario! Orange Dot are dedicated to championing new talent so we’re sure there will be a great selection of handcrafted creations to suit all budgets.

There will be homewares, gifts and stationary from Biba’s Tea Party, clothing from Brat and Suzie as well as Monty O’s Curiosity Shop featuring vintage clothing, furniture, ceramics, art and much more!  As well as the Christmas Market, screen printer and artist Joel Clifford has created a giant advent calendar that will be taking over one of the gallery walls.  Each specially designed print captures a different place in London in the winter and every day we will be opening up a new door and revealing a new print which will be available to buy but they are in limited runs of 10 so don’t hang about!

Then finally, on the 4th December there is an exciting one off event hosted by Madame Geisha and Spindle magazine from midday until 5pm at 82 Great Eastern Street in Shoreditch. Shop until you drop from a selection of bespoke fashion creations from talents such as Brett Le Bratt, Jade Jagger’s Jezebel, Draw in Light and many more. There will also be loads of amazing original artwork for sale from some of Europe’s finest artists including Inkie, Ben Allen, Tommy Penton and Jewel Goodby.

Alongside the shopping will be the launch of ‘Sort Yourself Out Love’ which we just love the sound of! Mrs Jones (super talented designer and stylist to the likes of Scissor Sisters, Kylie and Rhianna) and her team will be available to customize your outfit while Victoria Saunders attends to your hair and make up. You will indeed be sorted out and ready to celebrate the festive season in style!

As if this wasn’t enough there is incredible music from Roots Manuva and Ricky Ranking with DJ Jawa. Wow! We’ll be seeing you there.

Knitwear: Vintage Style

Some things never loose their fashion appeal, and I’m the very lucky caretaker of a few of those items. I say caretaker rather than owner as they have been passed on to me and I intend to pass them on to some fashion fabulous new generation at some point…

This delicious Bus Stop sweater is a perfect example. It was bought by my Mother before I was even a twinkle in her eye. I am about to dust it off again to wear for this Winter. I think it might have a certain Mark Fast lace knit appeal around the edges, the ‘vert de gris’ green is perfect and the sheerness is also right on track for this Winter.

Bus Stop was a style mecca on Kensington Church Street, alongside the perhaps better known Biba. Lee Bender, the founder, launched the store in 1969 and throughout its lifespan rolled the concept out across the country to a total of twelve stores at the height of their success.

I found this image of my Mum wearing the sweater, along with my stylish Aunt, at a family ‘do’ in the mid 70’s. Its still looking pretty damn good considering the amount of years this slip of knit has been worn for.

The original Bus Stop shop front

The "Blink" Mother in Bus Stop, on the left

vintage Bus Stop sweater

vintage Bus Stop sweater

Click here for more knitwear inspiration.

Blink Wardrobes: Eastside Story

We style spotted Katy Brown on her way into the 1234 festival and she featured as the lead in shot for our ‘Shoreditch Shorts’ post. We then struck up an email conversation and were delighted when Katy agreed to get involved with the ‘Blink” blog. Katy is a Fashion PR working for a seriously fashiontastic London store, so we thought that she would be the perfect candidate for the revival of our ‘Wardrobes’ feature. Katy sent us over some recent shots, giving us a virtual sneak peek into her closet. We love her unique take on black and denim with a dash of goth and retro rock chick thrown into the mix. Katy’s also just launched her own very cool fashion blog too.

Most worn from Summer 2010? Vintage Levi’s shorts, fur trimmed leather jackets, MAC ‘Girl About Town’ lipstick and enough jewelery to set off every metal detector in a 5 mile radius.

What will be your biggest investment for Autumn 2010? I’m waiting for the highest bidder on my vital organs so I can splash out on the original and best Burberry aviator jacket and/or a Mulberry Alexa. Be still, my beating heart…

Your personal style is:
Glamorous goth, everything sequined or sparkled, inappropriately dressed for any occasion and/or climate, and anything your Mum swears she wore the first time round. And always kohl-rimmed and pink lipped, naturally.

Your current style icon is:
I have a serious girl crush on VV from The Kills and Karen O still reigns supreme. I have a new found affinity for Joan Jett’s wardrobe after watching The Runaways.

If money was no object and practicality went out of the window, you would wear:
Cocktail dresses at all times. A lot of Balmain. Any leopard print pieces by Dolce and Gabbana. Arm-candy to be provided by Mulberry for day and Chanel for night, please.

Most used fashion phrase?
Trashtastic.

Photo 1

Photo 1: As photographed by “Blink”! Taken at the Shoreditch 1234 Festival, this is a typical festival ensemble for me. From top to toe, that’s a sheer-panel leotard from Ebay, a vintage leather jacket I customized myself with gold studs, a vintage pocket-watch necklace, my treasured ‘Katy’ nameplate necklace courtesy of Ebay, vintage Levis shorts I’ve ripped to pieces, Marks and Spencers sheer spotted tights, a Harvey Nichols Timex watch, a vintage Chanel bag courtesy of Rokit and my most worn item: a hair bow made from half a metre of chiffon from the John Lewis haberdashery department.

Photo 2

Photo 2: Snapped at the incredible Maison Martin Margiela exhibition at Somerset House. That’s a sheer leopard print blouse I cut the collar off and turned back to front from a charity shop, teamed with a fringed leather waistcoat from Miss Selfridge that I LOVED for the ‘Almost Famous’ vibe. There’s my glorious Mulberry again, alongside my Ray Ban Wayfarers and a pair of New Look cage shoes. I swear by their footwear…

Photo 3

Photo 3: Evidently posing as the Mayoress of Mile End! That’s an Ebay dress I turned back to front so the fringing sat at the front rather than at the back. I’ve protected my modesty with an 80’s Beyond Retro acid wash jacket which has the most amazing/horrific diamante and stud detailing. That’s another hair bow made from a Tie Rack scarf and that vintage Chanel handbag was an incredibly generous birthday gift from my best friend. Lucky, huh?

Photo 4

Photo 4: This is one of my all time favourite finds – it’s a vintage lace dress courtesy of the vintage store ‘Cow’ in Birmingham. It has the most amazing bodice detail. I’ve teamed it with a vintage black and gold belt, a vintage leopard print scarf tied as a hairbow, yet another vintage quilted bag and a squillion bracelets I’ve picked up and collected from various markets over the years.

Photo 5 from the Vogue website

Photo 5: Snapped at Notting Hill Carnival by Vogue, I’ve managed to perfectly co-ordinate my cocktail, my lipstick and my nail-varnish. Score! That’s an ASOS t-shirt dress with my studded leather jacket, teamed with Marks and Spencer sheer polka dot tights, New Look cage shoes and a shedload of vintage jewelery including my pride and joy charm from Chanel. The glasses are the Wayfarers again- a very kind gift from their Press Office.

Events- Little London Fields, part 5: Shadey Lady

And second in our accessories focused set of posts from Little London Fields, we look at some super shades. Sunnies have long been the ultimate badge of cool in fashion terms and we really love the diversity and individuality shown on the crowd at this small but perfectly formed fest. In recent Summers, the choice of whats hot and whats not in terms of sunglasses has been a narrow field of vision between Aviators and Wayfarers. We are delighted to say that this is no longer the case. Bring on big, bold, vintage, binocular style rounded shapes and colourful looks.

Click on the highlighted words for more posts featuring glasses and sunglasses.

Little London Fields

Little London Fields

Little London Fields

Little London Fields

Events- Secret Garden Party part 2: So festi, so nice

So, after setting the scene with yesterdays post, today we have some great Secret Garden Party style shots split into two posts- bit size chunks of fashion joy! From the theatrical yesterday to some slightly less ‘dress up’ looks today. They sum up this festivals mood of cool abandon, something a little off centre and more eclectic. Bright pattern, retro feel graphics, the ubiquitous denim shorts, maxi’s, minis and playsuits. Fill your boots and enjoy!

Secret Garden Party

Secret Garden Party

Secret Garden Party

Secret Garden Party

Secret Garden Party

Secret Garden Party

Thanks Cat for the perfect subject choices and great photography.

Click here for more “Blink” events.

Events- Secret Garden Party, The Secret’s Out!

We have been keeping Cat very busy having fun. On Thursday 22nd July she headed off on a secret mision for us. Her challenge was to track down the Secret Garden Party. Its an independent , not for profit event and has no sponsorship (and little advertising – even the locals don’t know about it!) started in 2004 by four friends. Secret Garden Party has bloomed in size and popularity becoming one of the ‘must attend’ festivals for those in the know.

The event is held in the Cambridgeshire countryside, set in the sublime grounds of a Georgian farmhouse near Huntingdon, in a 10 acre landscaped garden, perfectly placed for maximum beauty bordering a river and lake.

Some of the better prepared attendees had donned gorgeous swimsuits teamed with cut off jeans and boots, making it easy to strip off for a quick dip from the floating dance floor and into the swimming lake. If you didn’t feel like jumping straight in, you could still enjoy the water by heading off in one of the rowing boats.

Themed as ‘Fact or Fiction’ SGP was brimming with eclectic creativity in the sunny Summer weather. Culinary delights matched the visual feast; bands playing suspended in the trees, bales of hay made ad hoc seating areas whilst a 19th century steam powered traction engine served drinks from its carriages and served as a mobile disco. The style of the attendees was just as eclectic and inspiration from every decade were evident in decadent vintage outfits from flowing 70’s floral dresses to kittenish 50’s swimsuits and 1920’s elegance.

Gorillaz Sound System headlined with an impressive visual display, plus Mercury Rev, ska legends the Skatalites, Goldheart Assembly, Darwin DeezExample, Goldierocks, and many more. The stunning Marina & The Diamonds got the crowd singing early into the first night and I Blame Coco drew a stylish crowd too. Fireworks and Chinese lanterns added extra sparkle and Saturday night was lit up with the ceremonial burning of the floating dance floor.

This is our first of three post from this event, and we decided to start with some looks that embrace the more theatrical and eccentric looks from this festival. Enjoy!

Secret Garden Party

Secret Garden Party

Secret Garden Party

Secret Garden Party

Secret Garden Party

Secret Garden Party

Thanks Cat for the great report and super style shots.

Click here for more “Blink” events.

Events- 1234, Part 3: You’ve got Sole!

And last but not least from our style spotting bonanza at the 1234 festival, we have an accessories focused post. Its one that takes me down memory lane..

We’ve been spotting the odd crepe soled shoe, otherwise known as ‘brothel creepers’ or ‘beetle crushers’, on some cool boys and few girls around town, but Saturday’s event sealed this shoe styles ascent back into fashion consciousness. We have also been aware of Dr Martens coming through again, but have felt a little unconvinced- again, until Saturday. You girls know how to rock a manly shoe with style and panache!

I lived in a much loved pair of crepe soled shoes when I was doing my Art foundation many moons ago (suffice to say that it was the late 80’s!). I can even remember buying them on Floral Street in Covent Garden. Was there a Rokit store there then, opposite Jones? I thought I looked so cool in them with my Dicky Dirts dungarees, a pair of Paul Smith silk boxer shorts and a vintage bustier. I must look out a photo… or maybe not!

Click here for more on ‘Events’ and click here for more on ‘Accessories’.

1234 festival, Shoreditch

1234 festival, Shoreditch

1234 festival, Shoreditch

1234 festival, Shoreditch

1234 festival, Shoreditch

Events- 1234, Part 2: Shoreditch Shorts

So, we hope you liked yesterdays post cos there’s more! My team did such a great job at 1234 that we have lots and lots of great shots to share. Today its all about denim shorts, cut off so high in many cases that the pocket bags are showing. Its a look we love, and may well be rocking if there’s sunshine in Lulworth this weekend at Camp Bestival!

Click here for more on ‘Denim’ and click here for more on ‘Events’. Also, if denim is your thing and you’d like to see more, we produce a fabulous monthly ‘Denim’ report. Why not contact your nearest agent and make plans to have a look?

1234 festival, Shoreditch

1234 festival, Shoreditch

1234 festival, Shoreditch

1234 festival, Shoreditch

Thanks again to Amy and Jessica!