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I’m on the lookout for a new lightweight red sweater and this one piqued my interest on How To Spend It.
The bright red cotton sweater is by Madrid-based brand, Diarte, which is based around everyday basics drawing inspiration from ‘natural landscapes, contemporary art and strong architecture’.

At £130, the ‘Byron’ sweater is pretty well priced, considering it’s a locally-produced, fair trade brand. See more here.

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGE:  Diarte knitwear
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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Disneyrollergirl by Disneyrollergirl - 1w ago

Gotta love the kitschness of the new TWA Hotel rooms.

Designed by New York City firm Stonehill Taylor, they boast Knoll furniture, rotary phones, special TWA toiletries, and custom-built not-so-mini bars stocked with Moët & Chandon Imperial Brut Champagne, Hennessy V.S.O.P Privilège Cognac and Belvedere Vodka (can of Tab not included).

Plus a view onto JFK’s runways and the historic TWA Flight Centre. Note: earplugs not necessary, the hotel’s noise-cancelling windows are the second-thickest in the world after the glass wall at the U.S. Embassy in London — seven panes and 4½ inches thick.

The quarter-billion-dollar fit-out is a faithful homage to Eero Saarinen’s original 1962 building and has no right-angles throughout. Mind blown!

Fellow design geeks, watch this vid for the deets…




WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES:  TWA Hotel/David Mitchell
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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Further to my jeans post, I tried the 701s. Oh dear oh dear, what was I thinking? Great if you’re 7 feet tall, fugeddaboudit otherwise! The denim was nice though.

On the white 501s front, I bought a pair of the 501 cropped from Next of all places (first thing I’ve ever bought from Next I think!), because they had my size and they do click and collect. I have to say, the shopping experience was smooth and painless. The jeans are OK, not particularly cropped but I’ll just turn them up like I do my other ones. These have 1% stretch, which is fine, but I wish they were 100% cotton. Call me old fashioned but to me, denim isn’t real denim when it has stretch.

Which brings me to Chimala, which is a brand I just learnt about via the Tiina the Store newsletter. I just love these Chimala ‘Monroe cut’ jeans (above) and this unisex jacket (below). An authentic, ‘worn in’ look, good ankle crop and nice ‘small batch’ artisan sensibility (it’s Japanese of course).

They’re not cheap, but these jeans won’t date so I think are worth it if you’re going to be wearing them in five years. Anyone tried them? And what jeans are y’all wearing?


WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES:  Chimala/ Tiina the Store
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples*. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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Here’s the latest weekly DRG STYLE INDEX ranking, a round-up of the brands and industry stories currently buzzing on my radar…

PERFECT PAIRING: FRED PERRY X MARGARET HOWELL

I first saw this collab on the SS19 runway back in September. Margaret Howell rummaged through the Fred Perry archive and took inspiration from early tennis sportswear, including the OG Fred Perry polo shirt for this men’s and women’s capsule collection. I like the look of the jersey-lined bomber; it’s all available from Margaret Howell from 16th May.


SOPHIE HULME STEPS BACK

I received a sad email from one of our greatest technical handbag designers, Sophie Hulme this week. She’s closing her brand due to health reasons, explaining that she lives with not one but two rare conditions that have made it challenging for her to continue running the business. A real shame as her bags really are among the best out there, and a reminder that designers are people, not robots.


LA BOUCHE ROUGE GOES VEGAN

Refillable lipstick company La Bouche Rouge is going vegan. The super-chic French company is swapping out its leather cases for a ‘vegan leather’ version made of recycled polyester. The lipstick formulas are already cruelty-free, but going forward they will be bees wax-free to make them also vegan-friendly.


LOUIS VUITTON’S BAG OF THE FUTURE

Nicholas Ghesquiere’s collections for Louis Vuitton don’t always move me in 2D images. On the catwalk I find them over-styled, although when I see them in the showroom I can always appreciate the design and workmanship of individual pieces. For the Louis Vuitton Cruise 2020 show, staged in Kennedy Airport’s old TWA terminal (soon to be a hotel), Ghesquiere cranked up the OTT-o-meter to 11, with retro-futuristic suiting mixed with American street wear. The real talking points though were the prototype bags boasting in-built digital screens that effectively turn your handbag into a phone. Gimmicky showoffery destined for museum vitrines, or the future of luxury air travel? For me, the execution isn’t beautiful enough but I appreciate the concept.


IN OTHER NEWS…

NYFW is streamlining. This is good news and something I think London should take note of. I’d much prefer a tight 3-4 day London Fashion Week than one that stretches over 5 days. The reason the first day of LFW is slightly weaker then the days that follow, is because key press and buyers are still in New York. So the ‘big’ designers are reserved for day 2, 3 and 4 when everyone is here to see them. Same for the last day. Editors leave for Milan and skip that day, so why not lose it altogether? There are too many unnecessary shows so maybe it’s time to be bold and tighten things up

Nike is using augmented reality to sell you your perfect-sized trainers (please can all e-tailers do this…)

Society hoaxess Anna Sorokin (aka German heiress Anna Delvey) got sent down. The would-be entrepreneur and art patron has been sentenced to 4-12 years in prison, but her dream of celebrity stardom has already come true; there’s a Netflix series in the works. Read the original story here and the update here

There’s a flurry of midlife manifestos* about to hit the book store shelves this summer

This Soil Association market report on the beauty industry is worth a download

House of Fraser is investing in luxury mini stores, an interesting move considering consumer confidence is so unsteady right now. I do admire a risktasker though. Maybe this is a vote for the buy less but better movement?

*if that link doesn’t work, try Googling the title

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES:Margaret Howell, Sophie Hulme, La Bouche Rouge, Louis Vuitton/Vogue Runway
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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CLICK HERE to buy my book The New Garconne: How to be a Modern Gentlewoman

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This pic of Christy Turlington practically broke my Instagram feed. I’m not sure if it’s the *actual* Vogue Mexico cover or not, but I love the depiction of a (seemingly unretouched) frowny Christy in a high end fashion shoot. I think the reason we all love Christy is that she represents an intelligent, low-key approach to beauty that says it’s OK not to have expensive ‘anti-ageing’ treatments and injectables. Obviously she has great genes (she’s 50) and I’m sure she’s not a complete hippie, but it’s more the symbolism of what images like this represent.




There’s also a feature on Christy in this weekend’s FT* where she talks about her attitude to beauty. On the issue of age representation in fashion, she says, “I think it’s important for people to see representation of all kinds: age, colour, size… that people celebrate women who have faces that look like they should. That aren’t manipulated. That’s the thing about fashion shows, you can’t retouch a face on a runway.”

*Tip: if you hit a pay wall, just Google the title, ‘Christy Turlington on fashion, philanthropy and turning 50’

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Alique/Vogue Mexico
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

CLICK HERE to get Disneyrollergirl blog posts straight to your inbox once a week
CLICK HERE to buy my book The New Garconne: How to be a Modern Gentlewoman

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Disneyrollergirl by Disneyrollergirl - 2w ago

I know this is a terrible thing to say, but there’s too much good stuff on right now. I just caught the last day of Diane Arbus at The Hayward (brilliant). Just missed Don McCullin at the Tate (gutted). And now London Craft Week has snuck up on me and I’m nowhere near ready for it.

London Craft Week is now in its fifth year, a festival of all things artisanal and considered, with the additional backing of some heavyweight sponsors including Dunhill and Purdey to give it that extra push. This year also sees a lot more fashion involvement, but in fact there’s a wealth of niche, luxury and global crafts events to explore.

The press breakfast was held this morning at Fitzrovia Chapel (above). A jewel box of a chapel, it was originally part of the Middlesex Hospital that was razed to the ground by property developers Candy & Candy. As a listed building (it was built in 1891) the chapel remained intact, at one point a forlorn sight in this vast expanse of Fitrovia nothingness once the recession of 2008 put paid to the Candy brothers’ redevelopment plans. The chapel is now a vision of Byzantine-esque golden-tiled, stained glass wonder, which you can savour for yourself if you swing by the ‘Scorched’ exhibition and various talks happening for the duration of London Craft Week (until 12 May).

Onto my pick of the gazillions of events happening during the week. Many places have week-long activities taking place, while others are hosting timed talks, workshops etc which may need to be booked. Unsurprisingly, retailers have jumped on London Craft Week with gusto, so there are whole streets on board. For example, Mount Street, where Pringle of Scotland will be hosting a demo of hand intarsia knitting (with a side of whiskey tasting) tomorrow that I know will be brilliant having experienced similar at London Fashion Week (book here).

Nearby in New Bond Street the three-storey Casa Loewe flagship store is a major craft destination and a loyal supporter of London Craft Week. Not surprising really, as creative director Jonathan Anderson is a personal collector of all manner of craft (and now a trustee of the V&A Museum). This weekend you can witness live leather basket-making demos using Japanese weaving techniques from the mother-daughter team of Shizu Designs (below). More info here.

Meanwhile, on my doorstep in West London I’m making a beeline for Celia Pym’s ‘mend project’ at Toast in Westbourne Grove. A textile artist who advocates a make-do-and-mend philiosophy, there will be a display of customers’ knitwear pieces mended by Pym, accompanied by their personal stories. Her work is amazing, so this will be cooler than it sounds, I promise!

Nearby at Couverture on Kensington Park Road, there’s a tile-painting workshop and talk by London-based ceramicist Miyu Kurihara tomorrow from 11am-1pm (£25, book here). Kurihara’s work (below) is inspired by kimono designs and traditional Asian ceramic craft and you may well find yourself seduced into buying a souvenir to take home.

On Saturday I’m planning to head to Kensington High Street to catch the enticingly named Living Colours: Kasane – The Language of Japanese Colour Combination exhibition at Japan House London. A lesson in the art of natural dyeing, it focuses on Kyoto’s 200-year-old family-run Yoshioka Dyeing Workshop. (BTW, that place is a serious credit card batterer, so I’ll be leaving my wallet at home.) Nearby is a Today At Apple talk taking place at the Design Museum, discussing the role of craft in an age of digital tools (Saturday, from 2-330pm, free but booking required.)

Over in South Kensington, The Conran Shop is celebrating 100 years of Bauhaus with a five-day installation of live screen printing by print experts, Make-Ready, and a talk from graphic designer Sascha Lobe tomorrow at 6.30pm (Free, but booking required.)

There are soooo many more events. Also on my wish list… chocolate tasting at Alain Ducasse, create your own ‘sleep oil’ at Anatome, rifle engraving at Purdey, how to make a Caran Dache pencil, a sniff around Dunhill’s leather workshops and a female founders pop-up and panel talk at the Allbright club with the fab Anna Garner on the panel.

Here’s the entire programme of events and good luck getting your head around it all!

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Pringle of Scotland, Fitzrovia Chapel, Loewe, Miyu Kurihara
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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CLICK HERE to buy my book The New Garconne: How to be a Modern Gentlewoman

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Liberty has launched its Conscious Beauty campaign this month, with the news that searches of ‘vegan beauty’ on Liberty‘s website are up 135% and sales for ‘conscious beauty’ products have increased by 43% year on year.

For the duration of the campaign, Liberty is housing a ‘Beauty Empties’ drop-off point in the store, where all packaging will be collected and recycled with TerraCycle. And here are some DIY tips on upcycling your empty luxury beauty vessels into home decor items. (Side note, if you’re interested in this shift in beauty consumption, don’t miss my panel talk!)

NOW CLICK BELOW TO SHOP THE POST (I MAY EARN A COMMISSION ON THE BASKET VALUE OF ITEMS BOUGHT)…

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WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGE: Liberty Conscious Beauty
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links* and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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Here’s the latest weekly DRG STYLE INDEX ranking, a round-up of the brands and industry stories currently buzzing on my radar…

WALES BONNER WINS

It’s been a big old week for Grace Wales Bonner. On Wednesday she was named as the winner of the BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund £200k prize, while also collaborating with Dior on its 2020 Resort collection and hosting a ‘devotional meditative sound experience’ in New York with Solange Knowles, as part of Frieze. The prize win is a pretty good accolade, not that it’s the magic bullet people assume it is. Thomas Tait, who won the LVMH Prize in 2014, opened up recently about the reality behind the facade of young designer ‘success’. It’s still tough out there…


MUJI’S ANTI-CHEAP HOTEL IS OPEN

If you’re visiting the new Muji global flagship in Tokyo, know that you can book a room to sleep in, should the urge take you. Muji has just opened its third hotel (its first in Japan) in the Ginza district, occupying the 6th to 10th floors of the store. In typical Muji style, it’s all very minimalist and no-frills, a concept it calls ‘anti-cheap’, despite the price being super-affordable. The decor is lovely if you like the Muji aesthetic (I’m a fan). I love this cosy nook (above), while the concept also includes two galleries, a salon, library and a lounge. A kind of Mujiworld theme park for the Kinfolk set. (Related: Shinola just opened its first hotel in January. In Detroit, of course. You can buy everything in the room, from the speakers, to the Runwell desk clock, to the Shinola Cola.)


FIRST LOOK: CHANEL RESORT 2020


First look at a new, simplified Chanel, under the creative direction of Karl Lagerfeld’s long time studio director, Virginie Viard. This week’s Resort 2020 show at the Grand Palais in Paris was a notably less-is-more turnout for Chanel, which I quite liked. My favourites include this utilitarian patch pocketed coat (above) and the appliquéd camellia bib-front dress at the end. I think the styling could be a little less laboured but I love the relaxed hair and make-up…


SHISEIDO UNVEILS THE FUTURE OF RETAIL

Shiseido recently unveiled an impressive new research centre in Japan, setting out a blueprint for future experiential retail for beauty and beyond. My colleague at The Beauty Conversation, Katie Service wrote about it in our recent newsletter (sign up to our monthly digest here if you’re a beauty-phile), but suffice to say, if you like the idea of co-creating your own bespoke skincare with a trained researcher by your side, book a trip to S/PARK in Yokohama ASAP!

IN OTHER NEWS…

This is an excellent interview with WeChat founder Allen Zhang. His views on social media are refreshingly humanist…

Nike is in my top five fashion brands, and it’s pretty much all down to this guy

Martin Parr
shot the new Gucci beauty campaign

I love the Glossy.co business of beauty podcasts. Erno Laszlo’s CEO Charles Denton had lots of good insight on retail, customer loyalty and navigating the Chinese market. Listen here

A.P.C U.S. will let you swap your pre-owned stuff for store credit

Influencers are conning you… and bring back slackers!

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Wales Bonner/Harley Weir; Muji; Chanel/Vogue Runway; Shiseido S/Park
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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CLICK HERE to buy my book The New Garconne: How to be a Modern Gentlewoman

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Just clocked this new shirt brand from two former DVF colleagues on Vogue.com. Même Chose is fairly classic, well priced and there’s a shirt named after Tonne Goodman.

The most important thing about shirts is the cut. I love some of the details on these examples but I think the cuts could be a little sharper. For the price though, they’re pretty good. It’s a direct to consumer brand, so I like how the styles are shown on different body shapes to help with purchase decisions. One to watch…

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGE: Même Chose
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

CLICK HERE to get Disneyrollergirl blog posts straight to your inbox once a week
CLICK HERE to buy my book The New Garconne: How to be a Modern Gentlewoman

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“It is a useful word, but a useful word for junk — the junk you shovel onto YouTube and Facebook. What we do as journalists is fill a void. ‘Content’ is cheap and that’s why the Internet has gravitated to it in a marketplace of shrinking margins.”
A.G. Sulzberger, New York Times publisher, WWD

This is actually a very worthwhile read on the NYT’s business strategy. To counteract recent digital media woes, it’s investing in podcasts, TV and IRL ‘festivals’, and has developed its own way of navigating targeted advertising that respects personal data privacy. (Spoiler: it’s offering advertisers the option to target readers based on their emotions while they’re reading, as well as ‘motivation targeting’ which aims to get readers to take an action, like clicking to buy.)

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGE: Credit to come
DISCLOSURE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

CLICK HERE to get Disneyrollergirl blog posts straight to your inbox once a week
CLICK HERE to buy my book The New Garconne: How to be a Modern Gentlewoman

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