It’s that time of year again. The loved up season. Here’s my quick and easy guide for any Valentine……
It’s all about the card really, so get yourself pretty sharpish to somewhere professional like Paperchase, they have the best selection of cards and ‘love’ paraphernalia.
Next, decide exactly what you’re going to do on the big night. I hate to be a party pooper, but if there’s one evening I can’t stand going to a restaurant….. they’re so overcrowded, overpriced and NOISY. Why not ring the changes and go to the theatre? I can highly recommend the Dirty Great Love Story on at the Arts Theatre London – ‘im indoors and I went this week, it was funny, clever and really warmed the cockles of my heart which is a good start on Saint Valentine’s Day!
Sometimes I realise it is difficult to get out of an evening, especially if you have kids. I must say my idea of valentine heaven is to stay in with a good bottle of fizz, a big box of chocolates and I’m blushing declaring this but a book of romantic poems – Andrew Marvell SO does it for me.
Otherwise a fabulous film at home with popcorn and more prosecco than you shake a cupid at is lovely with me too!
And if you are eating in, why not go the full Monty in the kitchen and emblazon yourself in love print pinnies, tea towels, oven gloves and table settings. Cath Kidston is embracing the heart this year big style.
Of course no valentine soiree is complete without the lingerie. I have selected a few sets here all which will give you a cleavage to die for.
Last but not least, just in case Mr E (aka ‘Mystery’ – I still can’t fathom him after 16 years wed!) is actually reading this post and stuck for ideas this year – I rather like the look of either the Lulu Guinness lips clutch bag or Christian Lacroix button cushion. God loves a trier- I know, I know, dream on…….. Happy Valentines LOVE BIRDS!
Fantastic to see Marks & Spencer are doing a brand new activewear collection for girls. So as you can imagine, I was really excited to style this shoot for them. It’s a fabulous range for 5-14 year olds with vibrant geometric print vests, dip-dye leggings and slogan tops. All the sportswear pieces are made from an ultra-light elastane blend that sits close to the skin and helps regulate the body temperature. I think the fitnesswear looks amazing and the little models on the shoot really enjoyed wearing it. What a great incentive for kids to keep fit, active and healthy.
PHOTOGRAPHY – OLIVER SYMONS THOMAS, FASHION STYLIST – BECKY JOHN, HAIR & MAKE-UP – JO BULL
Denim has a fresh new feel. This season we’re seeing it embellished with amazing embroidery and covered in 70’s style patches. Complete the look with little denim shorts, bralettes and ethnic jewellery. To echo this strong 70’s slant, we shot this denim story very much in keeping with the era with fab flared light, shooting through blossom for a Spring time look. I love it!
PHOTOGRAPHY – IAN HOOTON, FASHION STYLIST – BECKY JOHN, HAIR & MAKE-UP – ANNA DURSTON, MODEL – ISHIKA SHARMA
Well, New Year Eve is nearly here. It’s one time of year you can go sequin crazy. I’m already in a sparkle spin and can’t decide whether to just wear my glitter bomber with a little black dress or go the whole hog-manay in a sequin jumpsuit. Decisions! Decisions! Anyhow, if you are looking for a bit of disco style inspiration, here’s my most recent shoot. Hopefully these little dazzlers will get you dancing until dawn. HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYBODY!
PHOTOGRAPHY – IAN HOOTON, FASHION STYLIST – BECKY JOHN, HAIR & MAKE-UP, AMANDA ROBBINS.
Last Sunday we all pitched up at our hygge vibe location in East London to do this fabulously festive shoot for Slick Mummy Magazine. Hope it fills you with Christmas cheer!
PHOTOGRAPHY – IAN HOOTON, FASHION STYLING – BECKY JOHN, HAIR & MAKE-UP – SARAH MCLLWAIN-BATES
This shoot was so much fun. Photographer, Charlie Troman and I wanted to work with models that could really move. Enter stage Tara Blanchard, fitness model from LA, plus Gabriella Darlington and Portia Prince from Model Fit Life blog. I was bowled over how physically strong, fit and flexible all the girls were. Most importantly, they showed off all this fabulous fitnesswear so well. I’m definitely jumping for joy!
PHOTOGRAPHY – CHARLIE TROMAN. FASHION STYLIST – BECKY JOHN. HAIR & MAKE-UP – AMANDA ROBBINS. FITNESS MODELS – TARA BLANCHARD, GABRIELLA DARLINGTON and PORTIA PRINCE.
There’s nothing like a handbag to get your heartbeat racing. These bags designed by Alida Boer, former Miss Guatemala, definitely pulled at my heartstrings as they help support women from some of the poorest communities in her native country.
After Alida’s amazing success as an international model she decided to put something back into her country. Always a lover of handbags she decided she would help train women from 16 underdeveloped communities in sewing, embroidery and design to produce premium bags thus creating jobs for them with fair pay. Yay! And so the brand Maria’s Bag was born.
All these bags are so beautiful with their intricate embroidery work, all one of a kind and taking up to 3 months to create. Each region of Guatemala has its own unique embroidery style – geometric shapes, animals, landscapes, flowers and in some cases stories and legends!
Maria’s Bag is an amazing collection of fab soft clutches, bucket bags and totes. Prices start from £75.00. Take a look at www.mariasbag.co.uk you’re bound to find something fabulous for Christmas
I love 70’s fashion with its flamboyant psychedelic prints, big floppy hats, shaggy coats and huge sunglasses. So I was really excited to style this shoot. First of all, I had to track down one of the most iconic pieces of furniture from this groovy era – the peacock chair. Then, clothes wise I wanted to mix up original vintage pieces from fantastic brand Rokit with modern day 70’s look clothes from the high street.
The shoot took place in photographer Ian Hooton’s amazing loft studio in central London. It was such a fun day with a great team. Ian had given me one of my first jobs as a freelance fashion stylist so it was lovely to work with him again. Make-up artist Amanda worked her magic on the very beautiful Olga transforming her into a 70’s Brigitte Bardot. I’m thrilled with the results – FAB!
PHOTOGRAPHY – IAN HOOTON, FASHION STYLIST -BECKY JOHN, HAIR & MAKE-UP – AMANDA ROBBINS, MODEL – OLGA DATSENKO AT M&P MODELS.
Our beautiful ballet story was dreamt up in a coffee shop in Soho. Whilst idly chatting over a cappuccino about all sorts of things, from our children’s dance shows, to enthusing about Sia’s video for song ‘Chandelier’ and the fabulous sheer organza fashion in the latest issue of Vogue, photographer Helen Marsden and myself realised we’d come up with a rather lovely theme for a kid’s shoot. A sort of mad Swan Lake at home.
Like many girls, I’ve always loved ballet and took lessons from aged 2 until I was a teenager. But felt this shoot shouldn’t be exclusively girly. Things have dramatically changed since I was little when it was seen as quite extraordinary for boys to do ballet. My Father was bemused when my brother Jonathan pleaded to do classes. His reaction was very similar to the Dad in Billy Elliot – “No son of mine is going to be a bloody ballet dancer!”
Luckily opinions are so different now. Premier league footballers, front-row rugby players even heavy weight boxers are all at it. It’s an amazing discipline for core strength, agility and flexibility. The boys in our shoot were as proud of their fabulous barre work as we were of them!
There was a flurry of excitement at the shoot. The children loved dressing up in tutus, feather headdresses and wings. They had such fun, leaping and pirouetting over the furniture in Helen’s beautiful house. I’m thrilled with the pics as were Little London Magazine who used the story in this month’s issue. What lovely team work – Bravo us! We should all take a bow.
PHOTOGRAPHY : HELEN MARSDEN, FASHION STYLIST : BECKY JOHN, HAIR & MAKE-UP : ROSE ANGUS
MODELS : FREYA, POPPY, MEG, & ISABELLA from GRACE & GALOR and ARTHUR & BRAM
Thanks to Freya & Poppy’s lovely Mum Jodie for the behind the scene pics.
I’ve thoroughly enjoyed The Olympics and so proud of Team GB and their amazing haul of medals. So feel I need to flag up these very patriotic leggings that fitnesswear brand PlayerLayer have launched to celebrate this summer of sport. They have a pop-up shop right now in the new Body Studio of London’s department store Selfridges. The range consists of 12 popular national flags. But if your country isn’t one of these, you can easily order your own using iPads and PlayerLayer’s customising platform allowing you to design your very own unique leggings.
Leggings Studio by PlayerLayer is also available online at www.selfridges.com Prices start from £90 for limited edition ‘Fly Your Flag’ print and £100 to customise your own leggings.