Sunday, 6 April 2014

Blue China

Well here I am doing what I'd always said to myself I would avoid doing on this blog and posting pictures of an outfit shot taken in the mirror.  I did however want to share this little space in my flat because it is now where I am putting together outfits on a daily basis.  The dressing area so to speak.  If you take a look at my Pinterest "Dream Home" board you may notice a slight obsession with dressing rooms and walk in wardrobes. Who wouldn't, if they had the luxury of the space, kit themselves out with a dressing room?

Where do you get dressed every day?  And how does the space affect how you feel about getting dressed?  Is it a pleasant, organised or creative affair?  Or is it a cramped, chaotic and stressful experience?  Getting dressed in our last flat was always more of the latter.  My last wardrobe was a couple of hanging rails on a wall that kept falling down and needed constant reorganising.  Since moving I thankfully have more space, but still no dressing room.

I did however, move a full length mirror out onto the landing between the stairs and the main bedroom and voila, I now have a dressing landing.  I get changed in the bedroom and come out here to view my handiwork.  It's not a perfect solution, being small and not particular private, but it's working well enough for now.  There is a window opposite which lets in natural light during the day and though currently I only have a blue Hokusai print for company, I might do the area up further with a nice little console table, a luxurious rug and a girly chandelier above and just make believe it's a proper dressing room.

I'm happy to say though that I am now the proud owner of a small walk in wardrobe.  The whole reason I insisted we came to see this flat in the first place was that I spied it marked on the floor plan.  After first viewing the flat I was crestfallen as I thought it was too small and Mr V thought I was being ridiculous.  I was right though!  I know my inventory!

Although it is a massive improvement on our last wardrobe, it is just that little bit too narrow to get dressed inside it and as you can see it is already cramped and a total mess in there! (I'm not a blogger who's going to pretend they're perfect.) The Spring wardrobe reorganisation looms!

The wardrobe is still a work in progress so take this as the "before" photo.  The space needs a big rethink as there is a slanting roof on two sides to contend with, the current units aren't making full use of the height on the other side, I need an alternative solution for shoe storage to the current towers of shoe boxes and I detest the wooden flooring put down by the previous owners.  And I want matching hangers damn it!

So back to the dressing landing, which no doubt will probably be featuring again on this blog as it evolves.  I wore this dress out to afternoon tea with the girls in West London last weekend in celebration of a couple of friends birthdays.  It is the perfect afternoon tea dress with it's lace bodice and china blue tinted print.  The afternoon was a delightful Asian themed affair in a tea room that was actually in someone's house.  We were given sets of little cards which provided detailed descriptions of each of the multitude of brews on offer down to their ingredients, aroma, flavour and origin.  We were then treated to a proper Asian tea ceremony and given a lecture of the process of brewing and pouring tea for each of our chosen brews which had extremely exotic names such as Golden Monkey, Dragon Pearl Jasmine and Mi Lan Honey Orchid Pheonix.

Here are some of the delights we were treated to.  The open sandwiches were very tasty and much more complex in flavour than their appearance would suggest.  We had chocolate mousse balls, marzipan, mango flavoured cake and a scone served with rose petal jam.

Naturally my dress matched the blue china tea was served in, which was the whole reason I wore it!  The other touch of blue here in this post is of course the shoes, which the more shoe astute amongst you may have already recognised as Carrie's wedding shoes from the first SATC movie.  Yep, I finally got my first (and quite probably last) ever pair of Manolos, a treat to myself for slaving away at work this year and managing to get a pay rise.  I went into Liberty's with The Other V (always a dangerous move) and came out with a loaded loyalty card and these blue satin babies.   And boy do I love them - they are heaven to wear!

I'll be joining the wonderful Patti over at Not Yet Dead Style for Visible Monday and DC in Style for Monday Bloom.

What's your dressing area like?

Dress: Preen by Thorton Bregazzi; Shoes: Manolo Blahnik


  1. Such a very pretty dress, shoes too, you are a living, breathing, tea-taking Willow pattern!
    Your walk-in wardrobe looks great, though yes, some higher hanging space would be good, wouldn't it? My stuff is all over the place, I can't contain it in one wardrobe so it overflows and multiplies, and I get dressed wherever my selected dress might be... Chaotic, yes, but I know where everything is (more or less), and I will never, ever have enough space in a household of five people for a separate dressing room!
    Well done on the pay rise and the Manolos! Xxx

  2. Gorgeous! And luxury goods bought with hard-earned bonuses and raises are infinitely sweeter than a splurge without work, IME:).

  3. Agreed, very well done with such a nice-sized closet *and* a full length mirror to check your handiwork. I love that wonderful blue patterned dress! Thanks for sharing with Visible Monday, xox

  4. Oh, your dress is ever so pretty! Can you tell me more about the dress please? I'm curious if the lace is a separate piece, or an overlay sewn directly on top of the bodice? Pretty shoes too!

    Me, I have matching hangers, that's about it. No walk-in closet, or dressing area beyond my bedroom. I'm constantly passing on clothing to goodwill.

  5. I dream of that flat version of those shoes. I LOVE the dress, but I am such a sucker for blue china. Also I like the framed print too.
    Congratulations on the pay raise. :)

  6. The tea looks and sounds wonderful! I love your blue and white dress.

  7. You wear that dress to perfection!!!! How utterly gorgeous on you, and the shoes are exquisite. I love blue and white, especially going in to warmer weather. I understand your impatience with the closet, but don't worry. You'll figure out how to make it work and feel luxurious. In the meantime, your picture is great. I can see you in all your loveliness. XXOO

  8. I so enjoy your passion for clothes … and your fabulous personal style!

  9. That dress is gorgeous and you look absolutely incredible in it. The party food is making me salivate and it's just gone 6.30am! Stop it!
    Have a search on ebay for industrial shop fittings, a heavy duty clothes rail with an extension rail and some ex-retail shoe racking won't cost more than £100 and you can pretty everything up with a Oriental rug and a blingy chandelier! xxx

  10. You look very pretty in your attire.

    Thank you. Love love, Andrew. Bye.

  11. gorgeous dress! I love the print!


  12. I know, I know...I'm an enabler! :-) but the shoes are gorgeous and I want that dress!

  13. One thing I always have to look forward to in your posts is lots and lots of wonderful things to see. First, you and that glorious dress. What beauties, both of you ... and excellent together. And it won't do to dwell on the delicious-looking tea ... I've already eaten my dinner, but am still peckish. It looks just scrumptious. Glad you had a lovely time with your friends! I so identify with your closet issues. Remember my joy at getting some commercial clothes racks? They still don't have a permanent place, but one day in Jerusalem ...
    That's a wonderful Hokusai print, too ... even upside down! I see why you love the dress and the print, and oh, those shoes!
    So glad to see you out and about.

  14. The shoes, that dress, the tea... So gooood! Welcome to the pic in the mirror club lolzzz

  15. The dress is so beautiful. Is the lace part of it, or a top over it. Love it either way. And are they, are they really - are they the Manolo's that Carrie leaves in the WIR at her and Big's beautiful NYC apartment. If they are, it is super apt that they are in your WIR. It's a good sign.

  16. Gorgeous dress! reminds me of the one Victoria Beckham wore a few years back.. simply stunning!

    Mrs Jack Of All Trades

  17. Wow! Gorgeous! The print is stunning. I am so envious of people like you that can wear such a high heel.

    That tea is making me hungry.

    BTW the flamenco show we saw last weekend was brilliant! Very intimate and authentic : ) I thought of you.

    We have a large bedroom with open style Ikea closets. I love them. I still want to add in a chaise lounge and better full length mirror though.


  18. What a lovely printed dress, and it looks great on you, perfect with the china. Last year I did a major clothes organising revamp, so finally we have order in the closets. I also use two garment racks, haha, as it saves time since I like to see everything out in the open days before. :)

  19. You look amazing in that gorgeous dress! And the shoes are so pretty. I love the idea of going for tea. I did it years ago with my best friend but doubt I dressed as well as you for the occasion. I am envious of any walk-in closet. Right now I have a triple sliding door closet covered in mirrors. It is bursting to the seams. We're moving soon too and are putting in our own built-in wardrobes - excited!

  20. Cute post! I adore that outfit, and your dressing area is really nice! I wish I could keep mine so neat!

  21. ohhh that dress is divine on you! and i dream of a walkin LOL

  22. Eres belleza y pura poesía.
    Qué maravilla de estampado, de vestido y de figura, ahhhhhhhhhhh
    Un abrazo, guapa mía

  23. You are wearing one of the most gorgeous dresses that I have ever laid eyes upon! And the shoes! Gorgeous!

    Over the past two years I have redone my upstairs and organized my collections. This makes putting together an outfit much easier. The key is returning each piece to its proper place. I don't have that down yet, but it's a habit I need to develop.

  24. I smile when I saw this post. Outfit shot taken in the mirror? that is sooo me, all the! I actually just did the same with the vintage dress I got from an online shop sale starting at $0.99! You can see more here if interested- Vintage Swank
    Btw, I love the dress you're wearing, the color is just divine and it looks tremendous paired with those shoes. Beautiful!

  25. This has to be one of the most gorgeous dresses I've ever seen. Beautiful.


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