London Things: Pashminas.

Posted in how i wear by bluewellesleyblue on September 30, 2008

Photo from Flickr.

Now this is by no means an exclusively London or British thing: street vendors and stands all over the US and everywhere in the world have pashmina scarves galore in every imaginable color and pattern and at every price range. I even own one bought from a vendor in Wellesley’s campus center! The ones in the picture, for example, are definitely on the pricier end and they’re everywhere for merely five GBP or even a little less, as in one stand near Covent Garden. Given that unfavorable exchange rate I keep mentioning, outside of H&M and a bit of Uniqlo, my shopping indulgences will be limited to little things like pashmina scarves from street vendors and markets.

What are your preferences when it comes to scarves? For a while I wore almost exclusively faux-Burberry-print plaid scarves though I’ve since fazed them out in favor of solid color scarves because I find them a bit more sophisticated. Still, I’m regularly tempted by patterned scarves as well, including some of the heavily fringed and paisley or ethnic-printed ones they’ve had at H&M for this season.

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Randomly Loving: The Dooney and Bourke “Alto” Collection.

Posted in things i love by bluewellesleyblue on September 28, 2008

When I think about what my next handbag investment might be – I try to choose wisely since I buy bags so rarely, my last purchase was more than a year ago! – I rarely think about Dooney and Bourke bags as an option. For the most part, their bags seem to be either slightly frumpy and old lady in the case of the more subdued monogram bags or very childish as in the case of the bee bags or the colorful monogram ones. I’ve recently encountered the tassel bag from their Alto collection, however, and I’m quite impressed. The entire line is very simple and very classy, though the designs definitely suit a person whose on the older end of being a student.

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Posted in london calling by bluewellesleyblue on September 24, 2008

Since classes have yet to start, I went over to the Oxford Circus shopping area yesterday. Supposedly, Oxford Street is the busiest shopping avenue in Europe, and I can believe it! There are more than four major department stores in the area, though I didn’t step into a single one since I knew that there would be precious little I could afford. Between the shops and the way everyone here seems to be so effortlessly stylish, I’ve been especially interested in updating my accessory collection.

Very Blair-like hair accessories!

One store I really like so far – though I don’t know for sure if it’s considered a decently priced area to buy fashion jewelry and headbands – is Accessorize. When I translate the prices into a rough estimate of USD (by doubling the price in GBP), I find that their things are decently priced, though I’ve kept from buying anything because I feel as if similar things would be cheaper in the US.

I don’t think I’ll end up buying any of the hair accessories since I already have too many. I will most likely give in to my shopping urges when it comes to cocktail rings. I’ve been intrigued for quite some time by the idea of a large, chunky, maybe slightly over-the-top ring to be worn with my casual outfits. I was especially charmed by the ring at the left when I tried it on at the store. My suite-mates who are from the UK assure me that street markets are much better places to find some things like scarves and some jewelry, so I’ll try to look elsewhere before I go back to this particular store.

London Time!

Posted in london calling by bluewellesleyblue on September 20, 2008

I arrived yesterday morning local time – it is now 3 AM, I’m a touch jetlagged – and have settled in a bit at my dorm for the fall term. They don’t have doubles here, at all, and in my building, all of the single rooms have small bathrooms included. So far, it actually doesn’t feel that different though the city streets here in central London are set up slightly differently and the stores are different. It’s not until I focus on the noise of the crowds that I realize I am definitely a foreigner here.

Some little details I’ve noticed:

1. They do not seem to wear flip flops here, even on a very sunny and warm day like yesterday. I’ll probably wear mine anyway, if the weather permits. Still, I was looking around while walking a couple of blocks looking for a Marks and Spencer to grab a cheap set of bed linens, and I did not see a single pair of flip-flop-wearing feet the whole time.

2. They have Uniqlos everywhere! I saw three within two or three blocks near Oxford Circus, which I gather is a fairly prominent shopping area here? With the exchange rate, the pricing is not quite as exciting as it is for people shopping at the Uniqlo in New York. Still, I thought it was interesting that they have so many. I hope they eventually come to the Boston area.

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I Fell in Love, But it Was Not to Be…

Posted in miscellaneous by bluewellesleyblue on September 17, 2008

I saw a gorgeously cut black Classiques Entier blazer at Nordstrom Rack while picking up some things for London. It would have gone perfectly with a pair of black slacks sourced from elswehere as an interview suit – I haven’t had luck with suits sold as sets because I wear a smaller pant size than my usual blazer size – except that it was two sizes too big. It wasn’t a particularly obvious two sizes. My usual go-to blazer from Ann Taylor, which is actually the right size, looks as if it fits about as well. Still, it was not to be.

Oh who am I kidding. I totally wish I had bought that blazer now, after realizing my actual suit did not fit me that much better. Now that I know I do not have aspirations for working in fashion or anywhere where unconventional office wear is encouraged, I’m willing to splurge on the perfect suit. I think I’ll run to Nordstrom when I get home and do just that.

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What I Wore: Red and Gray.

Posted in what i wore by bluewellesleyblue on September 15, 2008

Headband from Forever 21, Cardigan from Forever 21, Tank top from H&M, Skirt from H&M, Flats by Kenneth Cole Reaction.

Very simple, and I totally wear the cardigan and the skirt far too much, usually with black flats – I own three different pairs – with the only variety coming from other accessories and the color of the tank top in question. There were a small handful of people, usually very little kids, giving me funny looks because of the bright red and kind of large flower on my head. I still think the headband is kind of awesome.

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The Weather in London.

Posted in miscellaneous by bluewellesleyblue on September 15, 2008

Does this mean I get to start wearing my peacoat, scarves, sweaters, and boots now? Probably not. I might have to wait until it gets a little colder before I start wearing my winter clothes, but it’s much chillier there than it is in California.

I leave on Thursday. I’m quite excited to finally start school! It’s so strange to me that quarter system college kids don’t start school until mid September.

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