Friday, 31 December 2010

London Passing in a Blur

The 29th was the first day after my birthday which was not a bank holiday, which made it the perfect time to go to London with 4 friends (all girls) for an exhibition, lunch and some shopping in my favourite parts of the capital!

 The discovery of the day was that the underground is apparently like Marmite, in that you either love it or hate it. We were pretty evenly split in opinion, with me on the 'love it' side of course. It was made even better by this new wallet which I got for my birthday, which served not only as somewhere for my money and loyalty cards, but also as a way to work out where we were. That is the definition of Fashionable and Functional.
The exhibition we went to was 'Dior Illustrated' at Somerset House, which I have never been to before. In fact, I felt a little daunted actually going there after recognising its signature white bricks in the background of every photo in the street style section of the London Fashion Week newspaper. It was great though. We went to our exhibition in the Embankment Galleries then looked around the main building, which included a free Matthew Williamson exhibition and this fantastic staircase, which we had a lot of fun on.
By Rene Grau
By Rene Grau

 The exhibition was of pieces by Rene Grau, who did much of the illustration for Dior campaigns across the majority of the house's history. I've picked out my favourite two above, but you don't get the full effect until you see the original, because the texture of the paint contributes so much to it. There was also a section of works by artists who had been commissioned to make their own pieces inspired by Grau. Some of them, I didn't like that much, but I thought this picture of a man getting stuck whilst trying to take his shirt off  by Richard Kilroy was amazing. It looks like a photograph! I will be looking out for Kilroy's work from now on.
If you have a spare 1/2 hour and £6 (or £5 for concessions), 'Dior Illustrated' is well worth a look.


Finally, of course, the shopping. We had lunch in Covent Garden, so we started there with a look around Lily Allen's shop, Lucy In Disguise. I wouldn't say that I didn't like it, there were some beautiful things and the space was light and open with fairly helpful staff, I just think I'd like it more if I had the salary of a city banker, rather than a freelance babysitter and non-professional blogger.

We moved on to Radio Days, my favourite vintage shop, as I think I've mentioned before. I didn't buy anything this time. There was a light cream skirt on sale for £5 which i think 3 of us fell in love with, but we quickly learned that the reason for its price was the fact that it had been made for a the petite waist of a '50s hourglass girl. Seriously, it probably wouldn't fit around my head!

At last we got to Kensington High Street, which is my favourite place for chain stores because it has the choice and space of Oxford Street but with reduced crowds and slightly less labyrinth-like shops. Plus, it was where I first went to an Urban Outfitters, where I bought my favourite T-shirt and my watch, where I found my best schoolbag ever, and now, where I discovered my Zara trousers which I'm convinced will get me into college. OK, they won't get me into college on their own (I need a whole outfit yet!) but I will wear them to my interview when it comes around. I'm thinking either with a blue and white striped T-shirt and navy blazer for a sort-of nautical thing or maybe a matching blazer and caramel-toned top for a Love, Chloe feel (I know I've mentioned that before but that just shows how obsessed I am with it). How would you wear them?

All in all, a great day! And we might just be going up to London again very soon... more on that later.


Alyssa said...

happy belated birthday! i'm glad you were able to celebrate with your friends! i really like that photo of the stairs

MyguiltypleasuresX said...

The pictures looks so fun! Happy new year.

Ariel Wilson said...

Looks like you had quite a nice trip to London. And, actually, I am thinking to get out and take a drive around the city. Though I live in London, I haven’t been out for months. But reading about your trip has gotten me inspired and motivated me to get out of my house. The only thing that was worrying me was my dissertation, and I have decided to buy dissertation consulting service – which has taken that reason away – so now, I have all the reasons to call my friends and get out in the open.