Sunday, 14 September 2014

French Vogue September Issue 2014

I am in the middle of my travels so I haven't had the time to do all the September issues of various countries.  I am only sharing this French September issue of Vogue for your viewing.
( PS there is an editorial with some nudity so please stop here if that offends you.)

I love this picture and I don't normally like red.


These diamond hoop earrings combine both luxury and every usage well.
Too much jewellry ironically doesn't get used because it is too previous and never gets the literal chance to shine.

Not too sure about these Coco Chanel perfume bottle earrings.



They really wanted to style that hat but ran out of ideas.
This topless boxer doesn't look good on anyone so please don't try this at home.

This red coat is great if you are a high fashion flasher.


French Vogue loves Edie and I find her great because, well, because she isn't Cara.


I would have gone crazy over this dress but am upset that she is smoking in this picture.
There is a blog post coming on that issue when I get back to normal scheduling.

Remeber Betty Blue?



The daughter of the LVMH dynasty is known to be a Celine fan and wear that in her daily life even though she is raising the flag for Louis Vuitton in this feature.

Carla's back.  And the way French politics is going - she may be back at the Palace after Hollande's term ends.


These pair of Miu Miu boots or have made several editorials and will be pounding the pavements near you in a few months!
No comments on this post but hope you are all well!
Fingers crossed for the Scottish election which may mean different things to different people...

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Happy Chusoek / Moon Festival

Today is Chusoek in Korea and what the Chinese refer to as the Harvest Moon Gestivdl. It is customarily the 15th day (always the full moon)  of the 8th month in the lunar calendar.  It is always the largest full moon of the whole year and at around 6 pm your local time is meant to be the fullest for the year. It is the Asian equivalent of Thanksgiving. 

In most Asian countries that follow both the lunar and gregorian calendars it is noted as the second most important holiday of the year after the new year.

While people celebrate the usual way of commemorating holidays, in Korea there are some holiday rites that may seem peculiar to foreigners.

Most families will visit dead relatives graves and honor them by first bowing but also having a picnic in front of the tomb.

What is an interesting sight to some is that families are known to pour a bottle if the deceased choice of either sake or beer over the tomb and stick a lit cigarette in the grave. 

But what can be appreciated universally is that people give gifts like westerners do over the end of year Christmas and Hannukah season.  But the presents are always food of some kind. 
Meat and an ornamentsl box of fruits ( like one of the individually wrapped melons we got today) in season are a popular choice which symbolise the harvests at this time.

In Korea and Japan, it is etiquette to wrap presents more so than other cultures. In fact not only is wrapping paper used but a special silk or cotton cloth is used to cover the item. 

In Korea, it is referred to as bojagi and in Japan it is called furoshiki.

It is a custom I have only seen in these two countries thus far and I was do delighted to see people still maintain this tradition. 

 In fact there is a special bojagi that was mainly used by the korean royal family that was always embroidered.
Korea seems to have concentrated more on the embroidery side.

In Japan, many furoshiki have evolved to tie dyeing and the use of special indigo dyes.

In the spirit of modern oneupmanship, my mother received a Chusoek present a few years ago in an expensive silk scarf but luckily that hasn't caught on and traditional arts are kept alive although there are modern polyester varieties also available.

I am in Korea for the holidays at present so I would like to wish you a happy Chusoek / autumn / spring equinox. 

I also want to say that readers Kate and Constance Snow have won the giveaway. Please email me on

Pps please excuse this format but I am using the blogger app...

Monday, 1 September 2014

Clarence House - A small tour of the home of Prince Charles

Some of you know I try and be a tourist in my own city otherwise one only sees the daily grind of London instead of the reasons why it is considered a destination.

Regular readers know I did a tour of Buckingham Palace last year.
I walked past it on my way to this summer's tourist activity.
Glorious August London traffic! 
Look at how empty the Mall is!
 I not only walked by Buckingham Palace but also walked by the red coat guards stomping up and down in their ceremonial fashion.  Tourists should not be disappointed if they miss 
the changing of the guards.  One should just walk towards Clarence House and watch two guards ceremoniously stomp back and forth as a good substitute.
This year I decided on Clarence House and entered through the door that is on the Mall.
They had a decorative entry marquee before the tour started in the gardens.
I was clicking away and noticed that part of St James was also part of the grounds of Clarence House.
I wondered what was through those gates and noticed the planting as Prince Charles is a passionate gardener.  I had heard he had beehives and all sorts of gardens even in his London home.
I also saw his vegetable garden when I was told there would be no photos allowed at all.
So I will leave you with a few pictures from the guidebook that was part of the tour.
The house seems to have always housed a senior royal.
It is not only the home to Prince Charles but has been the home to the Queen Mother, Princess Margaret and even to Queen Elizabeth before she became Queen.

I took a shot of the most famous room of the house from the book.

 This is their Morning Room and the room where most family and official portraits are taken.  All the recent Prince George christening photos were taken here.

This room has mostly stayed the same since the days when 
Queen Elizabeth lived here.
As I adore porcelain I asked what the collection of china was that was proudly displayed on either side of the fireplace. 
( better seen on the first picture of the room two pics above )

The guide said it was Chelsea Porcelain which was not considered fashionable until it was discovered that the Queen collected it.  Copies are now available through the Royal collection gift shop.

The guided tour only included the main garden and a few rooms on the ground floor.

This is the dining room and apparently Prince Charles always sits facing the unfinished portrait of the Queen Mother.

This is the study and office of the prince but also where most televised interviews are filmed.

The guide did say that the house has a romantic gloom as light is very much a scarcity.
When I entered this hall, I was struck at how dark it actually was. 
The house was everything you would expect from a royal home with all its furniture and trappings.
It was an hour long and the guides were very knowledgeable about the house and history in general which added to the tour.  

It also ended with a glass of very chilled champagne  in the garden so I would highly recommend visiting next year when the house is open again.