drawings by Aude D on the inside of recycled envelops
The image of the perfect housewife who kept a spotless home, had her husband's dinner ready as soon as he walked through the door from work and single-handed raised the children - while still always managing to look fashionable and beautiful - is a well-known stereotype from the 1950s you would argue, but that is still very much alive nowadays I believe.
Aren't we still expected to cook breakfast, lunch and dinner, to do the laundry and the ironing and to be equally happy to organise, each week, several exciting trips to the local shops or supermarkets?
The idyllic picture of the perfect stay-at-home housewife who takes care of the home, raises the children, cooks nutritious meals, and provides a haven of calm for her hardworking husband when he returns at the end of his working day is very anchored in our modern society.
And we are still encouraged to look the part when our husband returns from work, ensuring we have bathed, perfumed and dressed in smart clean clothes, complete with fresh frilly apron (no…maybe we have won the battle on that ground), ready to spend a cosy and possibly romantic evening with him… in order to make him forget that he may have spent the day surrounded by some "boring" colleagues in mini-skirt.
In reality, it is impossible for women to meet this ideal unless your name is Bree Van de Kamp (from the series Desperate Housewiwes). In order to let go some steam from the pressure we undergo, we do need to go wild from time to time. Under the shiny surface lies a dark and wicked side which we will exceptionally let you have a pick at. AD
ivory cotton jumper : Primark (current) | flowery skirt : J&M Davidson (shop here similar item)| pink shoes : Topshop (current) | necklace : vintage
Ever since Sophie went to a photo exhibition of the famous african photographer, Seydou Keita, she became literally obsessed with african print fabrics. This spring, she just had to have a skirt made of such fabric. The trouble question though was : how? At the time the high street shops did not seem to foresee the coming trend. It was little brain storming for me to answer to that question, I knew I had to be brave enough to take Sophie to Shepherd's Bush market one day and that her eyes would be dazzled for hours by an overwhelming choice of african fabrics.
The next step was to have my little couturier enter on stage and do marvels at shaping, cutting, sewing and fitting Sophie's first dreamy and unique african princess's skirt. I do not think that Sophie has ever experienced such an agonising wait with a touch of mounting excitement while waiting for the skirt to be prepared. Would the finished product fulfil her expectations?
Finally, it was ready, and we could not wait any longer to disclose it to you on the occasion of a trip to our local market and fishmonger. AD
purple coton jumper : Cos (current) | skirt : bespoke | pink suede shoes : Primark (current) | necklace : Topshop | pink clutch : Zara | fish cushion : Ikea (current) | basket : Tiger
For this post, we decided to revisit a truly timeless destination in the heart of Mayfair, the iconic Burlington Arcade, a runway uniting Picadilly and Bond street. It was the world’s first shopping arcade, opened in 1819 to great acclaim and now recognised as a historic and architectural masterpiece.The arcade was built to the order of George Cavendish ( it was his idea to stop people throwing oyster shells, bottles and dead cats into his back garden! ). It was built “for the sale of jewellery and fancy articles of fashionable demand, for the gratification of the public”.
The Burlington Arcade is patrolled by beadles in traditional uniforms including top hats and frock coats (thank you so much John ! you’ve been so understanding and helpful !!!).The original beadles were recruited from Lord Cavendish’s 10th Hussars to patrol the strip, checking that no one is whistling, running or opening umbrellas.
A special thanks also to the best “shoe shine” in London, Romi Topi*, who has polished with extra care my “special shoes “!!! I think it was a first for him to polish a wolf's angry birds shoes !!!
The new owners, who bought the arcade for 104 millions of pounds in 2010, a New-York based property investor and a Europeen real estate investment and fund magement firm want to renovate it for a high-end international market (it means big luxury brands such as Prada, Gucci,Chanel…).Rents will be significantly increased and all the small family business will probably disappear…
So if you want to enjoy a proper “British institution”, do it now before it’s too late…xxx S.D.
black coat : Luisa Spagnoli | skirt : Whistle | grey cashmere cardigan : Esprit | black bow blouse : Uniqlo (current) | grey leather shoes : Zara | perl bracelet : Zara | angry bird slippers : H&M (current) | vintage crocodile handbag