Thursday, 19 June 2014

I finally used some of my good things but...

If I didn't make an effort to get out I could easily just stay at home and never leave the comfort of my three block radius.

But I worry I could easily become a female carmudgeon so 
I try and vary the places I frequent.
Ironically, it sometimes makes me feel even older...

My friend and I decided to have a coffee here.
Which place below you say?

The cafe in question was the "Attendant" which is a converted Victorian men's loo.
The Attendant
I had friends who rented just around the corner at Hanson Street twenty years ago.
Hanson Street
 When my friends lived here, it was NOT considered a chic area and there were definitely no coffee shops like this.
This area was not proudly referred to as Fitzrovia back then.

So I arrived being reminded of the passage of time by the gentrification of the area and this edifice which is normally well avoided by most being my destination...

I read the signs carefully
 before I gingerly headed down the stairs.
 The rope bannisters were a good sign.
 The fake grass wasn't.
 And I looked around.
 Mind you the place has a capacity of about 20 people max.

I had been inspired by Lady Sarah in London and 
her fashion and handbag anthology posts. 
So I decided to start using some of the nicer bags in my closet that tend to get neglected.


So I take my Kelly Picnic handbag 
to a converted underground loo and 
have no choice but to rest it on a repurposed urinal turned table. 
Seems right up Pinterest's alley.

 Then on my way home I walked by Primark where
 I haven't even entered in about a year.

Well I didn't miss out on anything although 
I do wish I missed spotting these One Direction socks.

I also didn't miss 100 of the same shirts on one rack with 
hangers strewn on the floor.  
Oh dear kelly, I do take you to the most glamorous places...

Then my bag made me click my boring grey ballerinas together to take her back home and perch her back on the shelf.  
Back to using my pockets again until she forgives me...

51 comments:

  1. Very cool place but how did they ever get centuries worth of pee smell out of there?

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    1. Good question because there wasn't even the slightest whiff which I was worried about initially!

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  2. DYING laughing. Best.post.yet. I cannot BELIEVE they are repurposing the actual urinals. I mean they're not as utilitarian as the modern ones, much more ornate… but still. You definitely have to get over the ick factor there. Was there any odour? was the food and coffee worth it?
    The bag looks very chic on the urinal. LOVE IT!
    Liked the outfit. Use your bags more please! xxx
    ps. Those socks are hideous, but probably a good place to wear an image of One Direction is on your feet.

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    1. Their coffee is one of the top 10 in London IMHO. Mind you the people who work there are Aussies so I think they roast them accordingly so it suits me fine. But there is no smell. You do try and sniff it but there wasn't any but I think the coffee smell must be helping? Will take you there when you come to town so get your Lela or Oscar dress ready!! xx

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  3. In some of my occupation there is a very real risk of actual contact with body fluids, true story that I had ascitic fluid go on my shoes while performing a drainage.
    Hence I don't always wear my good stuff.
    But generally I like to gussy up. I used to never. But now I feel life's too short not to. Every day is special.
    Faux fuchsia a great doyenne of this.
    Stay gorgeous xx

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    1. Interesting that doctors then where white no? Worse for the laundry! But I am definitely trying to turn it around although I will never quite be as glam as FF! xx

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    2. I am not glam now - sitting here is my walking clothes with Mr FF's pj top thrown over the top for warmth! But I say use those bags and God Hard or Go Home with the accessories!

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  4. Miss Kelly Basket had a wonderful day out and whoda though? Only in London could you get people to step down under into a place that so chic and inviting (though did it feel a bit claustrophic down there?) where so many have been before. Miss kelly elevated it to Portofino standards. Until recently I would carry my stuff in a plastic bag and now I have a scraped and scuffed little purse which I don't change out nearly enough for my "Outfits'. This is the first photo I've seen of you on blog and am loving this new direction. Want to spy more of that coat you're wearing, looks very Carven?

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    1. She still has PTSD. I do wish there were windows but I guess it would take away from the mystique?! I usuallly use my pockets or some tote used for recycling or the market. I am still quite shy Jody so let me hang out in this hangman selfie zone for a while longer! That trench is Theory and wish I bought some more in more colors bc I have used it so much here!

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  5. You do take her on the most amazing adventures;).

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    1. Hang out with me LPC and I will take you to all the "best" places!

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  6. Your bag is so summery (gorgeous)
    I'd love to have her come and visit me in The Humble Bungalow...I'd even post pictures if you were to share her with me!

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    1. She would love coming over to your bungalow and hanging out with your roses while having a cup of tea!!

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  7. Blimey!
    Kelly was probably worth more than the entire stock of Primark N!
    How many pairs of those lovely socks did you stash in it?

    I remember reading an article about the prominent pissoir which had turned from excreting to imbibing for its trade. Begs the question...what did the coffee taste like?

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    1. Just got 4 of the group minus Harry because I find him too leary and way to corrupt!

      The coffee was really really good!! In fact my friend went back for another cup and I will def go again! We must go one time :)

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  8. Hilarious Naomi. Pinterest material, for sure. If Miss Kelly doesn't forgive you, I'll take her off your hands!!

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    1. I am sure there are tons of urinals from buildings that are just waiting to be made over and pinned right Jennifer? x

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    2. In case someone needs an incentive...http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/9461916/From-public-loo-to-private-home.html

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    3. I saw that and thought the house market will drive people to do anything!

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  9. Well, firstly: phew! I am glad other people asked that question and it's all OK. I love your Kelly and definitely think you should be taking it back down off that shelf every day and using it every time it doesn't rain this Summer. Funny about that area. I used to live around there (quite some time ago) and I wish I still did. Lovely to walk through. You're right - so much more upmarket now. But, then again, isn't everywhere? Another great post...

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    1. I am going to try and make the most of things but I think I was in a bit of a rut...I used to work in that area a decade ago and it has changed even since then but funny enough one of the few places I would want to move to is that area!! I love it. So close to everything and yet somehow gets forgotten doesn't it? You know how to pick areas though - if you have any other pics let me know!

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  10. Hello Naomi,
    We are great believers in dressing up. Breakfast, coffee time, lunch, brunch, afternoon tea, cocktails, dinner and supper no matter what or when, it is good to put on the glad rags! It then turns even the simplest and most basic of events into an occasion.

    Once upon a time one could at least guarantee that at the Opera or Concert Hall people would at least make an effort to get out of their jeans......but, sadly, no longer. So, it is great to see your pretty handbag being given an airing and you will, surely, have raised the tone in the underground loo no end!

    With London spaces becoming ever more in demand, we can applaud the repurposing of these lavatories. However, we are not entirely sure that we should have wished to venture down into the cavernous interior, especially when we caught sight of the plastic grass. But, as you say, one must remain curious and open-minded in life since surely that will mean that we shall not tire of life and live longer as a result. So, when we are feeling flush (pun intended) we shall explore area and sample the convenient coffee!

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    1. You are so right and you do make everyday rituals into an occasion which is very inspiring indeed. I try and get out and go to new places to keep it fresh as it is sometimes hard to do in a city where I have been off and on for many years. But the real estate problem manifests itself in many way doesn't it? They would have made that loo if it had a proper fire exit though!!

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  11. A bit creeped about by the urinals there, there are two those building for sale her just now and I was just joking about making it into a coffee shop and ta da!

    That bag is utterly glorious, you lucky duck and I really love your coat too, it's very much my style

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    1. Once you get past sitting at a urinal the coffee does make you want to go again. Mind you they wouldn't get away with nothing but good coffee there right? That coat is probably my most used item in my wardrove conversely worn with one of the least used things in my wardrobe...

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  12. I really like the Attendant - I do pop up restaurants and did my first ever one there - although the kitchen is teeny tiny and was quite hard to get everything ready in!!

    Rosie xx

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    1. I suppose Rachel Khoo wont let anyone get away with a small kitchen anymore! I like pop up restaurants so that must have been so much fun!

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  13. I just loved this! Thank you for starting my day with a smile, and I love the bag and the trench and somehow the awful socks were the perfect finishing touch

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    1. Thanks WFF - those socks must be on the list for many a holiday pressie for 2014!

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  14. Naomi
    I must admit to never having sat at a urinal, standing is my usual gig. Of course, as they say, there's a first time for everything. Just how strong was the coffee?

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    1. Ha! The coffee was great with a lovely aroma dare I say GF :)

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  15. I couln't stop laughing while reading the post on the bus, on my way to the office! People were staring at me all the time! It was so fun! thankssssss
    laura

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    1. You will have to visit next time you visit London and get decor tips hehe!!

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  16. Hilarious - what a find; the owners clearly had good insight. Seems like you could miss it if you weren't looking for it though which is a shame. I love how you clocked the detail of the rope handrail and fake grass lol. Aaah yes Primark; somehow they have managed to wangle themselves in to Selfridges as a concession - smartish move because I did buy a skirt in there the other day. xx

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    1. Isnt it great? I didn't get the fake grass though as it adds nothing! Primark is getting a little worried bc their sales were down apparently this year. But their prices do tempt many but I just don't have the room for any more stuff! Have a great WE xx

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  17. Nooooo! Don't go back to using your pockets. You and the picnic Kelly need to go out and enjoy real picnics! The weather is pretty good now. Is the Kelly ok if it rains? ( I mean just a tiny bit of summer rain not drenched)

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    1. Well funny you mention rain but that is also part of the reason why I don't like to use my bags except for the fjord K which I mentioned before which is super resilient. Funny I do need to take it on a picnic and stuff a baguette in it or something? Speaking of which - Do you use your raincoats for your bags or just avoid taking out in rain?

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    2. No raincoats for me. I treated the pig skin Kelly. (Porc) and is now basically waterproof. My green one is box which is very sensitive to the rain and I should really get it treated too, but not confident enough to do it. We are having a pic nic right now actually.- lovely day today. Your pic nic Kelly is a dream bag- enjoy.

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    3. Yes must be careful with box. I find it looks good either new or completely scuffed and there is no middle road with that leather. Funny enough I was thinking I really should take it on a picnic and stick a baguette in it or something :)

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  18. 1. love the bag just divine

    2. can't believe the loo/cafe!

    3. Primark always depresses me because I imagine the people sewing the clothes

    4. nice sparkly shoes xxx

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    1. 1. Ta! 2. You need to go for a laugh. 3.The working conditions o'seas need to improve.4.patent! xx

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  19. Oh dear - also can’t believe the cafe. Did you enjoy the coffee? I don’t think I would be able to. I once had an office that had been converted from ‘the boys toilets’. I never did feel comfortable there. Much preferred the lovely one that was like a conservatory with metal framed windows and french doors opening out onto a view of the oval and a Morton Bay Fig. Not surprised your lovely bag marched you home. Tonkath x

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    1. The coffee was very Australian in style and half the staff were Aussies. They should make your old office looking out onto the oval into a cafe! sounds very nice indeed Tonkath xx

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  20. I love your bag! What a place... I am still unsure if I would like to visit or not :-))

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  21. Nice to see you let the bag out of the closet. The loo cafe is hilarious and yes I would go...why the hell not!

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    1. The funny thing is someone asked where the loo was and i had to giggle!

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  22. Lovely to get a trip out, but a urinal and Primark? Poor Kelly she must be concerned what the world has come to!!
    The urinal looks fab, I like those tiny cosy places on cold winter days when everyone else is working and you want to hide away somewhere.
    Where are you taking the Kelly next?

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    1. She is a cheap date really and once she recovers I might take her out for a proper lunch!!

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  23. Fantastic photos, Naomi! I can't believe a public washroom has been converted into a coffee shop. I wonder how much work was needed to convert it. The ironwork is certainly very beautiful - they don't make public loos like they used to. Both the trench and the bag are killer - you need to post more selfies, you have amazing style!!

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