Friday, 12 February 2016

In the name of Cartier

The ever so anticipated Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, so what to do this time around? Standards are high, we all know flowers are not enough to satisfy our lavish craving. For this years big day, I got to experiment what the ultimate Valentine’s Day would be like - a trip to Paris with Cartier.

I woke up in the beautiful Park Hyatt Paris-Vendôme hotel and got dressed for the big day. That meant opting for a festive LBD, we are after all illustrating the ultimate 24h Valentine’s Day. I got adorned in Cartier’s most iconic pieces, in everything from the jewellery box red bag that sets the Valentine’s Day mood, to everyones favourite, the Love bracelet. The beauty is in the simplicity and the dainty industrial details (sold with a matching mini screw driver!) Although I could talk about the Love for days, I suspect you have come across this one already, stacked or as a simple single piece. Designed to represent two lovers unique link, I don’t think there is a more distinctive bangle on the market than Cartier’s Love. The Trinity ring is another symbol of a forever lasting love and is in its timeless design a prefect piece for someone who does not want to commit to just one precious metal. The subtly tricoloured ring is enough on its own, but I realised later on the day how stunning it looks layered with a second Trinity band, I think this truly represents how addictive it can be to get introduced to the world of Cartier. As a necklace I wore the Amulette de Cartier - Yellow gold, lapis lazuli diamond - which portrays a dream catcher, an unlocked wish. Truly what this day turned out to be.

We visited the Fondation Cartier pour l'Art Contemporain, to see the much anticipated photo exhibition of Daido Moriyama and Fernell Franco. The airy space, designed by Jean Nouvel hosts annually changing exhibitions, of which the current one is on until June 5th. Portraying the changes that took place in Japan in the decades following World War II. I was especially intrigued by the colourful work of Daido Moriyama, so a few posters and books, from the shop upstairs, made its way back to London with me.

After this we headed to Cartier’s first ever boutique on Rue de la Paix. We got to visit the Jeanne Toussaint salon, hidden in the back of the boutique. Toussaint, known as Cartier’s creative director of jewellery from 1933 until 1970, was also Louis Cartier’s lover. The suite now holds a unique selection of Cartier's vintage pieces, of which some are restored and sold as part of the Tradition collection. However, I wanted to create my dream stack, and got a little carried away matching two golden Love bracelets and one diamond Love, two stacked trinity rings and the yellow gold diamond Clé de Cartier watch.

So that’s it, modern art and the ultimate jewellery wishes in the form of a little day dream in the name of Love Cartier, I could not have asked for a more perfect day. So now boys, start booking those train tickets and thank me later for the itinerary.

In collaboration with Cartier 
Photos by Mikko Puttonen

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Embracing -28°C

ZARA knit

A lot has gone into the first week of February and now it’s almost time to start packing for fashion week (jokes, I panic pack only when I get the message ‘Sandra, Your Uber is arriving now). But in my head I’m a great packer, in fact I am packing now, 90% of the time I constantly pack. Unpacking is still something I’ve never really done, my life is mostly shifting things around from suitcase to suitcase, however you are just as bad right? I dream of one day becoming an unpacker, serious organisation goals. 

ANYWAY, let’s talk about the shoes I’ve bought lately! Burberry’s patchwork boots were not the first pair I’d thought that I’ll be splurging on. However, then came the sales, the further markdowns and the intervention between me any myself about how much black I wear and how nice it would be to have a colourful overknee boot, you know to wear with all black? One click later I ordered a pair that really should have made it into last years ‘shoe of the month’. But, I’ll get a lot joy out of you boots, I hear NYC in covered in snow so my (alarmingly and rapidly growing) SS16 shoe collection will have to stay boxed for a few more weeks.

So, sale buys, winter favourites and my cosiest coats it is for my NYFW wardrobe, most likely worn all at once, if I understood the weather forecast correctly. These are the times I thank my Finnish roots, nothing prepares you for a (not so) dramatic +3°C better than experiencing -28°C. 

Pictures by Jere Hietala

Monday, 1 February 2016

Dry Clean Only

Swimsuit season, is that you? Nope, but for a blogger there is no such thing. It’s ‘force yourself on a holiday whenever you get the chance.’ However, make sure you create a hell load of content while you have turquoise pools and iconic (read: photogenic) backdrops. So I did! I managed to tick off one destination from my ultimate travel list, Moroccan, La Mamounia to be exact. But more about this on a later post, where I will show you more of what Pinterest dreams are made of. 

I have by accident become a swimsuit person. Somewhere in between me giving up on tanning goals inspired by J.LO and discovering resorts where you are supposed to spend literally 24h a day by the pool (Ibiza), I discovered the importance of luxury swimsuits. In all honesty, these have nothing to do with practicality, nor are they really meant for swimming. They are simply meant to look damn good. These wonder pieces works for you like a corset, so you can order the fish tacos as a side to your Bloody Mary lunch. Last years enlightenment moment was brought to you (and me) by Agent Provocateur, remember Marnee? That piece continues to have a 100% success rate, I’ll let your imagination explain what I really mean with that. This years version turns up the heat with a promiscuous cut-out, meet Remmi. Now I can hear eyes rolling, however, am I not correct to point out that this piece covers way more than your bikini does? That’s right…

Now part two of borderline appropriate pool-wear is brought to you by Victoria’s Secret. I’ve had my up’s and down's with mesh, a material that can so easily go horribly wrong. However,  I’m channeling more of a 90’s surf girl stranded on a yacht than a teenager on a Hot Topic shopping spree. Accessorise only with free flying hair in a constant, damp combover and avoid extensive sun exposure unless you are prepared for questionable tan lines. Unfortunately this one will not hold you in like the mistress swimsuit discussed above, but it will give you the best, barbie like arms. Now that’s important too, as it is indeed February and most are embracing the #winterbod.

So while we continue to push through another depressingly dark month, there is nothing that will get you through like full denial and a look at something so irrelevant as my favourite swimsuits of 2015, you’ve served me well. I’m both eager and slightly terrified to see what the new year will bring me in terms of swimsuit preferences. But hey, bring it. 

Saturday, 23 January 2016

Shoe of the Month: Manolo Blahnik 'Hangisi 105mm'

seasonal hand painted version in 105mm | or shimmer textile version

First and foremost, when I was done writing this post, I came across something that threw me off, and quite frankly had me rewrite most of this post! I bought my pair of the Manolo Blahnik ‘Hangisi’ pumps in Saks, NYC, back in October. While I have loved my pair of what I thought was the highest heel from the Hangisi collection, turns out I was wrong - twice! Incredibly enough these pumps are produced in 7 different heel heights (why?!) So let’s take a little more in-depth look at the wiiiiide range of Hangisis…

It’s that time of the month again, to talk about another amazing must have shoe. With embarrassment I admit that I only got the Hangisi pumps a few months ago, Carrie I apologise! Truth is that I always found them extremely beautiful, but so, or even too festive,  with the diamonds, satin and all. However, that is of course the beauty of this pair and they look nothing short from amazing dressed down with a floor length coat stolen from the man in your life, unbrushed hair and sold RBF (resting bitch face) à la The Olsen twins (grande Starbucks cup optional).

The shoe, which is of course known as the pair Big proposed to Carrie with in her new wardrobe (who needs a ring anyway) comes in a variety of colours, you could literally build a shoe rainbow encrusted in diamonds with the Hangisi collection, something I imagine every Hollywood housewives dreams are made of. I am wearing the 105mm in this post, which is the best seller from the range, other personal favourites include grey, green and cobalt blue (I want to be Carrie so bad). The mule version have a ‘so out it’s in’ vibe about them, am I right? D’Orsay and a slingback (named Cassia) are also in production, although they look a bit outdated, the flats I could get on board with if I wore flats, I don’t so let’s just drop that thought right away.

Much like the Valentino Rockstuds, the style secret with this pair is the dressing down option, letting opposites attract, unless you in fact are attending your own wedding. Keep the styling minimal (I say that a lot) and try them with a pair of blue jeans and a white shirt, live the wet dream of a street-style photographer. Also a power suit works wonderfully, nothing like a little androgynous mind game to balance out the contrast perfectly - Let the likes of Olivia Palermo paint that picture for you.

But what makes these ballroom shoes so wonderful, beside the fact that Manolo himself is a DARLING and the nicest person I’ve ever had the privilege to meet, is the amazing comfort. I don’t know if it’s the satin or the ideal overall shape, but they fit your feet like socks. However, tread carefully as they are unsurprisingly not as durable as leather. With that said, I think I just found my wedding shoe…. The most important thing of the big day sorted, right?

Comfort: 5/5
Surprisingly comfortable, easy to walk in and have a great grip. The soft leather lining and satin upper adjust perfectly to your feet.
Quality: 5/5 
Stunning finish in every detail, the shoes look like a million bucks (price not far from that) The downside is that the embellishment can scratch the satin of your opposite shoe when in use, so please be careful! Make sure you are not wearing these on the night your gay friend drags you to Vauxhall at 3am.
Purchase price: $965 at Saks Fifth Avenue in NYC, October 2015.
The price varies from £650 - £695 depending on the finish and style. The price range is quite narrow and the cost is surprisingly enough the same for all of the heel heights. For London based readers, I recommend checking out the amazing selection at Libery in store, (Mr. Blahnik's favourite store). Click to Harrods or Harvey Nichols for the best online range. US based readers, your best bet is checking BergdorfSaks 5th Avenue or Barneys.
Sizing: Runs true to size.
I bought these in a 37, my usual size, size-wise they run similar to Valentino.

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Flowers in January

Don’t talk to me about winter… People in London are complaining about the cold weather, where as I just came from a -28 degree Finland (not even joking). London with it’s long days and dry streets, practically feels like spring. I shot this stunning chiffon dream a while back in Paris before the Paul and Joe show. Wearing a ‘winter maxi’ as I like to call it, is a surprisingly (well maybe not worn as naked as above) valuable option, made possible by this amazingly weak winter. That’s what we do in January, bored with winter but not ready for spring, lost in the -70% sale section trying to make sense of these soon be purchases, thinking are they too seasonal or a good ‘I’ll-cherish-you-forever-buy’? I admit I have not mastered that skill just yet, but any piece that transform from a breezy summer dress to a layerable winter garment like this, is surely worth the splurge.