New Boo: Is that you?! Oh heeey, London!
When I say London is everything, I mean everrrrythaaang! Having considered NYC my boyfriend for years, London really gave me some crush vibes. (Two is better than one, right?! - wink) Oh heeey, London boo! My first visit to London was an amazing adventure -- from shopping where the locals shop and taking public transportation, to attending a fabulous dinner party and London Fashion Week!
Diner en Blanc London 2017
I had the best time ever at Diner en Blanc London! So let's just be real. I considered going to Diner en Blanc while I lived in NYC but never really got around to it. I heard that attendees had to bring their own table, chairs, food, decor...blah, blah and blah..and then look cute (in all white) while doing all of that (jeeeeez!). For one, I adhered very strictly to an "all black" wardrobe in NYC, so yeah uh...Diner en Blanc sounded like a bit much. However, when I decided that I wanted to cover the major Fashion Weeks around the world (NYC, London, Milan and Paris) and saw that Diner en Blanc would be happening at the same time as London Fashion Week, it was a must! And thankfully, everything just sort of fell into place. Of course it took a bunch of running around and some slightly heavy lifting, but it was all well worth the thrill!
First off, having a super helpful and knowledgeable Airbnb host in London was (#IS) clutch (shoutout to Donna!). She basically heard the plan (read - operation: semi-swanky all white dinner party + London Fashion Week) and joined the team. She laid out the game plan, including where to buy a table and chairs for the low and where to shop for "one night only" all white outfits. She even lent silver, china, a white tablecloth and fresh ivy and flowers from her garden for the table decor; and on top of all of that had some Fashion Week connects! I definitely had to give her that DJ Khaled "You da best"!
Thanks to the 2012 Summer Olympics, London has a "newly" built mall -- Westfield Stratford Center, which literally had EVERYTHING needed to attend Diner en Blanc, right down to the table and chairs! Further, one stop at Westfield, which is normally super busy, and you see just how multicultural London is. That boded well for the actual dinner part of Diner en Blanc. I thought it would be cute to have courses from all over the world (only right for a world traveler, right?!), so my travel partner and I ran all over the food court and restaurants at Westfield to get the perfect combination -- Mediterranean apps, Caribbean main and of course an American dessert (Krispy Cream to be exact!). It was perfect, and the dinner itself was a whole vibe!
Sponsored by Moët & Chandon, everything was super upscale at Diner en Blanc and just sooooo pretty! It rained plenty, but that didn't stop anything. Folks danced in the rain. In fact, there were fountains in the middle of the courtyard style dinner venue (the acclaimed Somerset House), and folks were dancing in the fountains! So yeah, I was blown away by how fun the event was! I can't say for certain whether all Diners en Blanc are as fun as this one, but I definitely enjoyed and made a few new acquaintances along the way (one couple being from New York and Chicago, small world right?!!). I would most definitely do it again!
Thinking about attending Diner en Blanc in London (or someplace else) and need some tips, drop a comment below (or contact me). I am happy to give ideas and provide more details on how to do Diner in Blanc seamlessly! :)
London Fashion Week 2017 (Fall)
Fashion Week itself is an exciting time of the year (twice a year), BUT to experience Fashion Week in London, that's just another ordeal! The shows alone were amazing, but the PopUp shops and exhibitions, and London street fashion ... gasp...I.can't.even...but I'll give it a try!
Starting with the PopUp shops and exhibitions, I met several amazing independent designers, who either made or designed their own merchandise for sale. One such designer I absolutely loved was Alanna Wain, the founder of Conflict of Ego, who shared with me the inspiring story of how she began designing and the meaning of her brand. In her own words, Wain's brand is "thought-provoking, good quality and feminine"; yaassss! Check out my exclusive first interview with Wain below, during which she discusses some of her pieces, including from her recent "No Sense of Community" (Stay Brutal) collection:
Another amazing designer I had the pleasure to meet was Judy Wu, who showcased her S/S 18 collection, "La Lumiere." Wu's showcase included a live exhibition which represented a surgical table with the designer herself constructing a garment laden with "[s]urgical cuts . . . reflected in the abstract panelling" and "the scars and stitches from surgery," all together evocative of "the pressure and expectations women face in pursuit of 'Perfection.'" Wu's collection expressly emphasizes notions of "Feminine Strength," much like Wain's. Kudos to these designers! Take a peek at Wu's captivating live exhibition here:
En route to attend fashion shows, I was completely dazzled by the individuality and creativity of the street fashion! From a stuffed swan hat to coordinating girl trios -- all ages, colors and sizes: folks stepped all the way out to express themselves in the most fashionable ways!
Check out my Top Six L.O.N.D.O.N. Fashion Week - Street Fashion looks and comment below with your favorite look! Which look could you see yourself rocking?!
Finally, my travel partner and I crashed some fashion shows, devoured fish and chips and stumbled upon the best desserts to date at Hawksmoor, where the service is just as good as the food, and that says a whole lot!
Check out and subscribe to my YouTube channel to view full fashion shows and more!
As you can see, I had the most amazing experience in London!
“When you’re in the right place, you know. I know.” ♡