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Chanel grows its own Jasmine in Grasse for No5….

The farm is owned and run by the fabulous Joseph Mul (above) and his family and harvested by a loyal team of pickers…

 

 

 

 

When at Chanel’s Jasmine harvest naturally one wears.. Chanel wellies…

 

pickers at the weigh in–Jasmine flowers overnight and can only be picked during the morning..

 

 

 

 

the flowers are loaded into trays and  the pickers load their baskets into the back of their van and head for their lunch…meanwhile the harvest heads for the processing plant…

 

 

 

 

where it goes through multifarious processes…. which ultimately create an absolute- the liquid used in the No5 fragrance formula…  Other highlights of the day included… the Chanel PRs who naturally.. wore great accessories…

and the Tuberose (which I had never seen growing in fields before). Chanel also grows its own roses for No5 at the Mul’s farm….

namaste…xxx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Backblogs occur all the time – by this I mean you get so bogged down with other stuff that you just can’t, don’t or won’t blog and then as time passes you grow resistant to putting fingers to keyboard – wondering if it really matters, and really, who the heck cares in any case…. Well that’s my excuse- but also check out two of my all time fave bloggers: Justine Picardie

Justine picardie

and Dominique Browning

dominique brownings blog

for much better reasons to not be blogging – a wedding (hurrah) and some challenging life issues. OK, so both these bloggers are peers of mine and I admire them greatly, but even if I didn’t I’d be urging you to check them out – they both write with such humour, grace and dignity.

So, in an effort to end the backblog of my own pathetic blogging record – – here’s a quick rundown of what I’ve been up to  in the last few weeks:

Location: Long Island, here are some snaps:

Stylish small person at Heathrow

best dressed traveller at Heathrow

The best bikini store? Malia Mills  Southampton NYC

Southampton NY bikinisI

I like her approach to swimwear – she embraces all sizes, makes great stuff that as a friend of mine puts it ‘doesn’t move when you and your breasts jump into the pool’ – great colours and fabrics too

Malia Mills bikini shoot

This is how she merchandises and displays: cool -no?

C Wonder

Free Candy at C- Wonder Chris Burch’s new store  (AKA the ex- Mr Tory Burch). Now we’re talking…

eating an icecream

You don’t have to be a Euro to eat icecream at Sant Ambroeus but it helps. And you must be dressed properly to do so….

Hamptons children's scribbles

And on that note… only in The Hamptons would a child’s doodles be the above… -pretty good twin C Chanel logo though…

Pimped Vespa at C-Wonder

I hate football (soccer) but I love my son… which is why I let him persuade me to take him to a Chelsea v Paris St Germain game at Yankee Stadium, which is a beautiful stadium….

Chelsea FC versus Paris St Germain at Yankee Stadium

Totally different atmosphere to the UK….lots of well behaved fans and not a C word to be heard. And I don’t mean Chanel……

Before I blog off, a word about the Olympics coverage from here. I LIKE IT! OK so before they lifted their paywall you couldn’t stream live events via the NBC website, but now you can…

NBC London 2012 logo (thanks NBC)

and frankly there’s nothing better than going for a swim, sitting down in the shade with an Iced Tea and chanting ‘USA, USA!’ followed swiftly by ‘Come on GB!’ -( for those of us conflicted by dual nationality)..

namaste and thanks for having me back….xx

Not blog apathy but life atrophy… – I knew things were bad when a friend of mine @katemuir said to me whilst we were running ‘I haven’t seen you around on twitter lately’ – which is the modern day equivalent of saying ‘you don’t seem to be getting out much’.

So, here’s where I’ve been in the last two weeks (discounting a couple of visits to the local ER -see life atrophy)…

 

Chelsea Flower show.. the cool old boys – aka The Chelsea Pensioners and the L’Occitane garden

chelsea pensioners at chelsea flower showchelsea pensioner at chelsea

ever wondered what the judges at Chelsea looked like… i have.. see below….

l'occitane garden at chelseajudges at chelsea flower show

 

Eccentricity abounds…

british stuffwell, it is Britain…

home of the well informed (tipped off) paparazzi – here they are outside my house- not for me (obv) but for some other poor female trying to push her baby on a swing in my garden square.. Nice.

paparazzi

I suppose you could accuse me of the same for taking a pic of these cute waiters at the Orlebar Brown party… but I mean, how could you not…?

orlebar brown party

here’s Julietta Dexter at the Orlebar party making Versace look very good… note the yoga body..

Versace

here’s the Orlebar Brown pop up truck. Genius idea. Watch out for it…

orlebar brown pop up truck

how great are these flowers done by a guest for a wedding at my local in Primrose Hill?..aaahh…x

flowers at The Lansdown Primrose Hill

on that note to finish….lanterns over primrose hill

lovely lanterns and the moon over Primrose Hill…

 

 

Maybe it’s just me, but there’s a certain sort of Uber Euro Male I find deeply irritating. I wrote about ‘him’ today in my WSJ column………

uber euro maleEarlier in the week I went to the opening of the Ballgown exhibit at the V&A. If you want to know what I really thought about that you’ll need to read my column next Friday. But in the meantime, the very good bits were the projections onto the domed ceiling of the newly refurbished wing…

ImageImageImagemeanwhile… I don’t approve of Fakes but sometimes… they are ingenious. Here’s my friend Frances’s brilliant Chanel…. well actually its her daughter Eliza’s. Eliza found it at a vintage store in NYC apparently

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and finally. Isn’t it time the term ‘trainer shame’ was introduced? By which I mean if you need to pay money to someone to put your through your paces over some sort of preposterous assault course in a public park in view of the whole world; you might need to think about getting a new life, or a new trainer or alternatively, just find some place private for your ritual humiliation….

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A friend’s son reminds me about Want Les Essentials de la Vie (thanks Seb) you can view it at Mr Porter; but in the search for a new bag – backpack or otherwise, it becomes obvious that no one (other hand Hermes and we know about those prices) is creating chic, understated women’s bags, without logos, gold ‘badging’ and a mass of heavy buckles. Men’s kit on the other hand is wonderfully simple and understated. We are of course to blame – in our frenzied perpetual search for the ‘it’ bag, we have managed to persuade designers and manufacturers alike that the more obvious and tricksy a bag, the better it will sell. So here are my top three bags – all created for men of course….

the first two are courtesy of Mr Porter…

Les Essentials

Bottega Veneta

Mulberry….

The most economically savvy and talented people often become their own brand (Steve Jobs being the ultimate) and last week I went to see a preview of the Sky Arts 1 documentary about the life and work of photographer Richard Young at the wonderfully discrete Soho Hotel 

Young was a Papparazi long before the word became sullied. His candid shots of celebrities and social events have made him the chronicler of an age – particularly the seventies onwards – in the same way that American Slim Aarons was a chronicler of pre and post war society. The key to both men was that their subjects liked them and felt comfortable having him take their picture. Another brand – Peter York – heavily featured in the documentary-interrogated Young post documentary. Young has some great anecdotes about the great and not so good…Surely a book is only moments away?

Above: Richard Young (left) and Peter York – behind is  one of Young’s famous shots of the Studio 54 gang…

I’ve been away for a while so here’s a recap of what i’ve been up to in the last week or so… How to dress like The Queen: last Friday’s column in The Wall St Journal – I’m a republican (of the French variety) but still, you have to hand it to a woman who has created her own style and stuck to it for 60 years…. read it here

other stuff I’ve come across in the course of my working week….

Linda Evangelista look-alike currently working as a waitress at Granger &Co Notting Hill

very cool shades courtesy of Christian Dior and cupcake Lisa

dog in store …..Notting Hill again..

what all the best dressed ‘kids on the street’ are wearing – this time in Primrose Hill

UPS man’s Brazilian bracelet (purchased on a Rio beach)

Parliament Hill before a rainstorm (plenty of those around at the moment)…

Anya Hindmarch’s Maud – in celebration of Lizzie II complete with paper tiara and instructions for royal wave……

 

Made the very excellent Business of Fashion newsletter today with my piece from yesterdays WSJ on Uniqlo….

Great company. I love their approach of listening to both the customer and their on floor sales teams, so that they can really supply what the customer wants. They own their supply chain too which is also something Frida Giannini of Gucci said was essential to a great fashion business when I interviewed her. Three best Uniqlo pieces this season:

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women’s engineer boatneck t £14.90

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women’s skinny fit cargo pants £19.90 on the website

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and my favourite which I’m considering buying for myself – the men’s biker jacket £59.90