5 Minutes with an Aspiring Fashion Photographer

Ladies and gents, meet Ali Foroughi, the twenty-something fashion and music photographer and advocate of hidden talent in Loughborough. His magazine has become the holy grail for aspiring creatives in the East Midlands. His creativity and determination has won praise by many (and gave him the opportunity to cover LFW), apart from his personal tutor who is trying to keep him in the lab for his engineering degree.

So how is it that someone who originally set out to conquer the world of mechanical engineering decided to follow his passion and run his own photography business? I managed to get five minutes with the rising star (after 2 attempts!) and got to ask some questions...

What inspired you to become a photographer?

I’ve always been very arty. My mum is a painter, so it’s always been in the family. You can’t really follow art because you won’t be making any money. But I’ve always been interested in graphic design. A few years back, when I was editing photos, I thought why shouldn’t I be just creating these photos myself instead of looking online which takes hours and sometimes you have to pay for stock images. So I bought a camera. And I’ve always had some kind of interest and when people asked for photos I always tried to be creative. So I bought a camera and instantly fell in love with it. Just the whole idea of it. And as I did more and more it became better and better. And then I chose to do fashion because I enjoyed that more and more when I did it. Because you create something out of nothing. You have to put all of it together.

A shot from the black and white photo shoot for issue 2 of Jungle Magazine
What is your most memorable photo shoot?

I would say, the best one was the cover shoot for the second issue of Jungle Magazine – the black and white one because there was a lot of organisation going in to it. It was something I’ve been meaning to do for a very long time and when it happened I was very pleased of the result. That’s my favourite one so far. It could have been better. The next issue will be a lot better. You learn as you go along.

Have you faced any challenges when you first started?

There have always been challenges. There is nothing easy. Even though it seems, like a lot of people say, you just take pictures of pretty girls but that is not what I do. There are a lot of thought processes to create the photos, like coming up with a concept and booking the models, the makeup artists, the location and you get cancellations. There are a lot of organisational skills that go in to it. So that’s one bit of it that I have to take care of myself. And then with the magazine it’s a team that you’ve got to organise. Give people some work and a lot of stuff is dependent on everyone else rather than you. So it’s not just you willing to put all the work, you’ve got to motivate others to get to their deadlines. And all of it is a challenge. Another bit of it is the funding – it is really difficult. It’s a very enjoyable job and you learn a lot basically.

Ali's work published in Vogue Italy (PhotoVogue)
You also run a magazine, as mentioned earlier. What’s the idea behind it?

The magazine started with the fact that I felt that there are too many talented people in Loughborough and their work is not being demonstrated to anyone. I wanted to get my work out there, so one of the ways was me submitting to different magazines but I thought that there isn’t such thing in Loughborough that is giving such exposure to these people. And the idea behind the name Jungle is that it is a jungle out there if you are a creative to be able to actually succeed in what you are doing.  So this is a platform to help people and myself to get to the next stage. But at the same time it was challenge because I’ve never actually had managerial experience. It was a challenge for me to teach myself how to be a leader and how to organise people and how to handle different business situations. 

And what do you think the response has been so far?

It’s been crazy. It’s actually a lot better than I expected. With the first issue we covered the map - we had views from pretty much every country which was incredible. The second issue just came out recently and on the first days we had 2500 views, which rose to 12000 over the following few days. This is pretty amazing. I wasn’t expecting that. It is good. A lot of people have responded to it very well. A lot of it is thanks to networking. My friend always tells me your network is your net worth.

A photo taken by Ali for the blogger Cosmin Cernica at fashion scout "the ones to watch" show
And finally what advice would you give to other young aspiring creatives?

I would say don’t be scared to follow your dreams. To work hard and take all the practical steps to achieving your dream. At the same time, if you do that, it means that every morning you wake up and you go to a job or a career that you love to do, rather than a normal everyday job. And also just network, network, network! That’s all that matters.

Jungle Magazine Issue 2 is out now and you can read you digital copy at

Top Snaps from the Busiest Week in London

It seemed that last week London was the place to be - Fashion Week, BRIT Awards and BAFTAs all took place right on our doorsteps!

Whilst the 80s were revived during LFW, it was the long flowy dresses, black lace & velvet and metallic fabrics that actually were a big hit both on the catwalk and the red carpet. Let's take a look.

Cara at Burberry
Tom Ford isn't holding back with velvet
Bring on the metallics Erdem
80s allure by Vivienne Westwood
Colourful geometrics at Mary Katrantzou
Ella Eyre at the Brit Awards
Who says you MUST wear a dress on the red carpet? Nicole is bringing out her inner rebel
Lupita Nyong'o
Lupita Nyong'o looking stunning in this number
Fearne Cotton
Fearne Cotton's BAFTA dress is totally in sync with Fashion Week trends
If there was one week in the year to dress up, this was it!

Winter Trend: Teddy Bear Coats

Two weeks ago, during London Collections: Men big fluffy coats and man heels caused an uproar. I don't know how far man heels will go (not very far beyond the catwalk I assume), but the so called teddy bear coat is already a huge hit!

I must say, there are many benefits to this garment. It does keep you warm (just tested mine in icy Moscow), and can also be worn in milder climes with no layers underneath (i.e. perfect cover up for a night out). 

Did you know that these coats also make the perfect air plane pillow? That fluffiness surpasses none but your favourite childhood soft toy!

Jokes aside, I am really loving this trend not only because it is comfy and warm but also because it is slightly grandiose and stands out from the sea of black winter coats.

So what is this coat that I'm talking about, I hear you ask. Ladies and gents, I present to you TOPSHOP's longline borg coat:

Unfortunately this piece has already gone out of stock, so I've dug around for some other great teddy bear coats.

Get the look teddy bear : cropped teddy bear coat beige black white stripe across middle section
Get the look teddy bear : beige teddy bear coat with collar
It's time to get furry girls (and guys!).

Signing off from Moscow...

New Nail Trends

The festive season is upon us and we are all about to, if not already, to intensify our beauty regimens. Ladies & gents, you may have been trying to get fitter for several months now, but the time has come to take actions with visible results. What am I talking about? Beauty treatments of course! And whilst men have limited options (facial and a cut?), we, ladies, are free to splurge on a myriad of things.

But today I will focus on one: manicures.

You may do then regularly,  but this is the time to change and experiment with your talons! Here's my pick of the hottest nail trends this season.

The Remake of Retro Red

The fiery red has been taken to new heights this season.

Shimmering Sparkles

Micro glitters are your best option if you think mega sparkles are too flashy.

Pretty Pastels

Just like the weather, the nudes have gone colder!


For the mischievous at heart, these colour-change nail varnishes are the ultimate fun!
Which one will be your festive hue? Or would you be going for nail art appliqués instead? Share your thoughts below :)

Winter Trends: The Sweater+Skirt Combo

Close-Up Stylebook Knit AW 13-14
Who said winter has to be dull?

So winter is up on us (sadly) and it's time to add on the layers. Now that the big September issues of the fashion magazines are long gone, one thing that has stayed on my mind are the countless sweater and skirt outfits. And I must confess they are my favourite winter trend! 

Close-Up Stylebook Knit AW 13-14
Office-to-after-hours-drinks: the perfect outfit
So I was scouring the shops hoping to piece together a similar combo from the mid-season sales. I ended up with this, slightly preppy, Gap do:

P.S. The skirt is actually navy blue! Love it!
Although it is not the exact outfit I envisioned, I am glad to say the quality of the garments is top notch (100% cotton)! This means I can wear them for a long time :) so I consider them a good investment.

I guess it comes down to my job in merchandising that I have now started thoroughly investigating the material composition of the clothes I buy (and I try to steer clear of poly and nylon!). Hence, I believe I have a new high street lover - Gap.

sweater + skirt = cute
More examples of how to piece together your perfect sweater + skirt outfit

If you too, like me, love this trend then fear not: all the stores - from the high street to the high fashion - have lovely sweaters and winter skirts in stock. And what's best is that the winter sales are coming soon! Now all that's left to do is to patiently find a good sweater + skirt combo and you are good to go!

Game Room

So it's Monday evening, we're all tired and it's freezing cold in England. But there is something which can brighten anyone's day - bright clothes of course!

After years of hiding behind the books, I got back in front of the camera for a friend of mine. Ladies and gentlemen, meet Ali Foroughi, his amazing photography and bright blazers!

To see the rest of the photo shoot please visit

Now I hope this has brightened your day a little bit :) 

Dress For Success: New Office wear Outfit

Office politics can be confusing for newcomers like recent graduates. But what is even more confounding, especially for us girls, is the dress code. Every company has their own thing going on - from the very formal 'suit & tie' (or should I say 'suit & heels'?) type of place to the 'smart-casual' inbetweeners to those who are completely relaxed and allow their wage slaves to wear jeans.

But what exactly is 'smart-casual'? How do we wear a full-on suit without looking like we've come out from a past era? And what are we meant to wear when the weather warms up? So many questions, so few answers! 

Being the helpful person that I am,a s well as the fact that I needed some new clothes (who doesn't?), I have put together an outfit and will tell you how you can dress it up or down to fit in the office. And the best part? It only cost me £60 pounds (thank you TK Maxx) to get all the bits and pieces to this outfit:

BCBGeneration leather shoes (£29.99)

Maison Scotch Shirt (£10) [Apologies for the quality of the photo!]

Simon Jeffrey leather and fabric skirt (£19.99)

It is a bit more on the formal side, so if your workplace is a bit more smart-casual you can replace the heels with flats and/or swap the shirt for a plain blouse or t-shirt. If your office is full of the suit & tie types then throw on a blazer but perhaps lose the shirt and replace it with a plain t-shirt. If you are one of the lucky ones that works in a very much 'anything goes' office you can get rid of the skirt and put on some skinny jeans and substitute the wedges with some ballerina flats or a pair of short leather boots with laces.
The whole look brought together

7 Beauty Mistakes You Will Not Make Anymore

Oh, the number of mistakes one can make when applying beauty products! Being the beauty rookie that I am, I'll probably give make-up artists a heart attack. Luckily in our digital age help is always on hand - the countless YouTube tutorials and beauty blogs are here to save the day.

Chances are that you are making the same errors too so I scoured the web to help us get the most of our beauty products. Here's a list of the 7 most common mistakes and how to rectify them:

  1. Applying foundation around your face. This is a big no-no. Always start at the centre of your face and work outwards. In this way you will avoid tide lines and product in your hairline.
  2. Patting eye cream on before going to bed. Combining eye cream with sleep can cause puffiness. Therefore it is best to apply it in the morning when the congestion can drain away as you are more likely to be standing up for longer periods afterwards.
  3. Finding the right B spot. Blushers are a tricky lot (hence my stern avoidance of the bunch). Yet they do make a huge difference to how we look. Apply blusher between two imaginary vertical lines - one from the centre of your pupil down to your cheek and another from the end of your eyebrow.
  4. Going OTT with hair products. There's nothing worse than mastering a cool new look and then ruining it by using too much hair product. Use these size guidelines to avoid having to re-do your hair-do: shampoo & conditioner - strawberry; mousse - apricot; serum - grape; and oil - blueberry.
  5. Not wiggling your mascara. If you really want to get those luscious lashes from the billboard ad then do as the make-up pros and wiggle your wand at the base of your eyelashes before combing through to create volume.
  6. Overdoing the nail polish. Using too much of le vernis can cause it to chip so stick to three swipes per coat. Apply one sweep down the centre and then one on either side for an even effect. Oh and if you can invest in a good nail polish - my fav is Chanel Le Vernis which I blogged about earlier. 
  7. Spraying perfume on your neck. I was really surprised to find out that the best place to apply your favourite fragrance is the collarbone and in the crook of the elbows rather than the neck and wrists. Well now we can smell fresher for longer.
There you go. 7 mistakes you and I will no longer make. 7 ways to get the most out of our beauty products. 7 tips to look good. Take a note and let me know how you get on.

Graduand on a Budget (How to be a Smart Shopper)

Photo by Yi Lei
So a few days ago I had my graduation ceremony and realised how expensive such affairs can be. Dresses, shoes, hair & beauty... such events can quickly break your bank if you are on a tight budget. Fear not! There are plenty of ways to enjoy yourself without falling in debt. Being the thrifty shopper that I am, I managed to kit myself out for about £50 making my total graduation expenditure just over £100 (including memorabilia and academic dress hire). So what did I wear? Let's take a look:

BALLY shoes from TK MAXX for £35 (RRP £479)

Promod dress for £15 (pre-sale price £40)
Love the sequin print combo!
How did I do it? Well, first and foremost I strongly believe that you can look good without spending a lot. With that in mind, here are three tips on how to be a savvy shopper:

  • Paying full price for something? Think again. You could be entitled to a discount by showing a student ID or a loyalty card.
  • Wait for the sales! Special offers, online promos, seasonal and flash sales happen regularly and often back to back. Hold your horses for a while and you may save some money.
  • Outlet shops are your best friends. These stores stock up on branded items (high street AND luxury) from past seasons or window displays and sell them at huge discounts. The best part is they have clearance sales as well so you save even more! Think TK Maxx and SportsDirect.

Stay smart, save money and enjoy life (don't let the banks bite you!).

Beauty Products and Toxicity

We're all aware that the beauty products we use are made up of a long list of ingredients, some of which we can hardly pronounce. And the fact that over the years there have been plenty of media panics about the various stuff that goes into cosmetics does not make things any easier.

So what do we do? Do we abandon all manufactured beauty products and go DIY/all natural? Or do we ignore the hype and keep on using what we know works best for us?

Well I've been digging around the internet and found some useful scientific information to help you make the right decision. Here are a few things which you should be wary of:

Photo by Aih.
  • Eyelash serums: requiring application for up to four months to see results, these serums can permanently darken the skin around your eyes and turn your irises brown. A safer option would be using eyelash extensions.
  • Tanning beds: frequent trips to the solarium have been scientifically proven to raise your risk of melanoma and cause premature ageing (i.e. wrinkles and brown spots). Avoid the UVA rays by using a spray tan instead.
  • Parabens: the most common preservative in cosmetics, parabens are often blamed for breast tumours, however scientific research has not found any direct links between the two. If the p-word still bothers you, look for products which use vitamin C (ascorbic acid) or vitamin E (tocopheryl acetate) as preservatives instead.
Photo by alli
A final word of caution, no matter how "chemical-free" and "natural" your beauty products may seem, they can become toxic beyond their expiry date. Make sure yo change your foundation and lipstick after a year, your blush powder after two years and your mascara every three to four months.

Stay safe

10 Style Tips and Tricks You Should Know (Part 1)

Here's a little something to help you up your style stakes:
  • Stick to your own signature style which you know looks good on you because not all fashion trends will suit you.
  • If you are not sure about an impulsive attraction to a garment or accessory, hold back from buying it until the next day - if you are still thinking about it then go for it!
  • V-neck sweaters and t-shirts give the illusion of a longer torso.
  • Put on so much spray tan that it ended up on your clothes? Use a lemon wedge to clean up the mess.
  • Wear your new leather garment in the rain - the water will soften and stretch the leather and will also allow the garment to crease at specific points on your body.
  • Use a hot glue gun to hem skirts and pants in seconds.
  • Loads of good accessories (scarves, glasses, hats, jewellery) can transform even the most basic outfit.
  • Dry wet shoes naturally in open air. Never use heat - it will cut the lifespan of the shoe in half.
  • "Spray shirts prone to sweat stains with lemon juice before washing. The natural acid dissolves alkaline sweat reside that could cause yellow discolouration." - Perrie Samotin,
  • Nude pumps give the illusion of longer legs, unlike dark-coloured shoes which can make them seem shorter.

The Future of Fitting Rooms

Shopping may fun. Changing rooms not so much. The small cubicles can be the equivalent of the gates of hell, especially for female shoppers. The fluorescent lights always find a way to highlight our weak spots and the top-to-bottom mirrors tell us truths we do not want to hear. Some have argued that such is our fear of the fitting room that it has become a significant driver of the online shopping boom.

Apart from this fear, there is the unpleasantness of lugging a bunch of clothes all the way to a fitting room only to find out that we've picked the wrong sizes and need to shout out to a shop assistant whilst standing naked behind the curtain. Oh and what about the staff who has to sort out all the mess left behind in changing rooms?

Hointer ©
All of these issues have left some innovative minds thinking and the results have been varied - from Hontier where robotic pickers deliver the clothes you have selected to an allocated changing room to robotic mannequins acting as virtual shop assistants.

Hointer is a concept store set up in Seattle with minimalist retail space. As small number of apparel items hang on simple rails coming down form the ceiling allowing customers to have a good look at the clothes. 

They pass by scanning QR codes of the clothes they would like to try which are automatically sent to an allocated changing room by robots. Requesting a change of size can also be done via your phone and once you are done you can either drop the clothes in chute or take them to an automated checkout.

Me-ality ©
Finding the right size is another issue, as sizes often very from shop to shop, brand to brand. Fear not, The Me-ality booth works by scanning your whole body whilst fully clothed and recommending clothes that are most likely to fit you. The Canadian invention is already available across US malls and works with nearly 200 different brands.

If you just can't be bothered getting into a changing room and are looking for a more private experience, is for you. This virtual fitting room service allows shoppers to see how a garment fits their particular type of body shape. 

Customers enter a set of their measurements on the website or app after which robot mannequins made up of panels that simulate muscles morph into that shape and are photographed at speed. Shoppers can then click through until they find the perfect fit. ©
Such technological innovations are expanding rapidly and until a way can be found to print 3D clothes that are a perfect match for our bodies they will provide shoppers with a pretty good alternative to the daunting fitting room.

Haute Camorra - Behind the Scenes of Glamour Factories

We're all aware of the many evils lurking behind fashion's glamorous mask. But to think that the only sufferers of this industry are Asian children working in factories or planet Earth is wrong. No, there are other far more obscured victims which suffer in silence.

Take for example people working in the counterfeit luxury fashion industry. If you thought all fakes were made in China, well you were wrong. Surprisingly, Italy, the home of the likes of Prada and Armani, is one of the many  counterfeit luxury goods hotspots. By now you would have realized the paradox - both genuine Prada and counterfeit Prada products are made in the same country!
Photo by Comfort from Arise and Shine photography
The truth is that these two industries operate as one under the patronage of the Camorra from Naples. Here's how it all fits together. There is a network of small factories which force their 10 or so highly skilled employees to work in cramped, unsafe conditions (including stairways). The owners of these factories attend auctions organised by the big fashion houses. Each owner bids by stating the amount of time and money necessary to complete a design put forward by the fashion house. 

Once the best bid has been established, all factories (irrespective of who's had the best bid) are given free material and set out to complete the design in the quickest and least costly way without compromising quality. Once the item is complete, all factory owners present it to the fashion house which chooses the best one and pays for it. The remaining pieces are put on the market in many shapes and forms - haute-couture, counterfeit, unbranded. These pieces are sold in shops and on the streets around the world. 

All of this is possible thanks to the fashion houses who allow it and the mafia who runs it. And if you ever thought that all of this could be put to a stop, think again. In Naples, everything is linked to the Camorra, the local mafia. This point has been made by many, including William Langewiesche, who provides an insightful description in his article on
The Camorra is not an organization like the Mafia that can be separated from society, disciplined in court, or even quite defined. It is an amorphous grouping in Naples and its hinterlands of more than 100 autonomous clans and perhaps 10,000 immediate associates, along with a much larger population of dependents, clients, and friends. It is an understanding, a way of justice, a means of creating wealth and spreading it around. It has been a part of life in Naples for centuries—far longer than the fragile construct called Italy has even existed. 
Another "semi-retired" Camorrista, Charles DeLucca, highlights the Camorra's extensive power:
From toxic nuclear disposal, to Italian luxury goods, fashion stores, bootleg Italian merchandise, drugs and prostitution, the Camorra is the modern Hydra,the mythical multi-headed serpent from out of Ancient Greek myth.
These writers hint at the idea that the Camorra never sleeps and can't be stopped. Research has found that the mob often imposes the sale of those factory produced fashion counterfeits as a form of extortion. However, they are not the only ones to make such daring exposés - Roberto Saviano's book Gomorrah is the most detailed and 
shocking piece of writing on the matter. The truths revealed "expose the brutal underbelly of the industry, where the suit you wear bears the stench of death, corruption, narcotics, and blood money." 

Multitasking Beauty Products

Although I tend to be pretty much a low-maintenance person when it comes to make up and beauty products, I must proclaim my love for products which perform more than one function and allow you to save time and money.

Image courtesy of audfriday13 at
Therefore I was really happy when I found out recently that the popular BB cream was to welcome its successor, the CC cream, in the coming months. As many of you may know, the BB cream stands for Blemish Balm cream and acts as both -  a foundation and a face cream with a sun protection factor (SPF). Many brands jumped on the BB cream bandwagon due to its huge commercial success about a year ago. Now, the leaders of the beauty products industry are taking one more step forward by creating the Colour/Complexion Correction cream, which is affectionately called the CC cream.

What's new about this 'all in one' beauty product? It combines even more benefits for your skin. In  addition to the BB cream's function as a tinted cover-up for troubled skin, the CC cream will also include anti-ageing ingredients as well as foundation pigments and SPF. The new anti-ageing properties of the cream make it a must have product for women of all ages. Why? Because a recent research study found that French women looked on average 7 years younger due to the fact that they start using anti-ageing creams when they reach 15-20 years. That's five years earlier than British women, who only start using such creams when they see the first signs of ageing after turning 25 years old, which can be a little too late.

Image courtesy of Ambro at [P.S. this is not me]

If you were wondering when you could get your hands on this beauty miracle, the first CC cream is rumoured to be launched next month (April 2013) by Olay at a price of about £25-30. It seems like a pretty good deal for a multitasker like myself.

Until next time,

A History Lesson

During this month filled with pink hearts, most of us will be busy working towards some goal. As I'm working [hard] towards finishing my dissertation, I've just decided to take a short break and give you all a reason to procrastinate for a few minutes.

You see, it's not only Valentine's Day that is the highlight of February. The A/W fashion weeks around the world have kicked off and soon you'll see a media frenzy around these events. Did you ever wonder how [and why] this started?

Well, I'm proud to say it is the brainchild of a public relations person. And originally Fashion Week was called Press Week. Oh the contributions PR makes to society... And then they say degrees in media are useless. The truth is media is the driving force of many aspects of our lives - including the economic and cultural spheres.

So if you are still wondering how Fashion Week grew up to become the monster it is today, this lovely infographic sums it up well:

The History of Fashion Week

And if you are interested to know the full story with all the nitty gritty details of how the World Wars and Vogue editors shaped fashion as we know it today, then you can read my full article here.

Alright, now that you have learned something new [and procrastinated a bit], may be it's time to get back to work?

Until next time,

Badass Outfit

Hello folks.

Once again I shall post from my phone. Entering the mobile age in 2013.
Over the holidays my mum was here and we went shopping... And I must say I'm very pleased with the results - there's badass contemporary Japanese thing going on. What do you think?

It's All About the Ethics

OK, so what if I haven't been posting for over a month? Who cares right? What? What's that I hear? Are you saying that you've missed my antics?

Jokes aside, I do have a genuine excuse, as always, for not showing up here. Apart from being busy with life and academics (that word definitely sounds more posh than 'uni'), I have dived head first into my university's media centre. You'll hear more about this later though...

Today I want to talk to you about fashion and ethics. As it is one of the busiest shopping periods of the year thanks to Christmas and New Year, it is only right that we take a step back and think. 
We are all aware to some extent  about the negative impacts of consumerism - the demand for cheap mass produced items has forced retailers to save on ethics. Be it underpaying workers in sweat factories or dumping toxic sludge in our environment, we think we have heard it all.

But there is more to that. I'm not here to tell you about that - although you can read about it in my soon-to-be-published article in Label, which I will upload in my yet-to-be revamped about me page. 

I'm here to tell you about the good stuff that's out there. Shopping for presents does not have to be a negative thing. Fashion does not have to be a bad thing either. As established designers and retailers gradually overhaul their ethical frameworks, new 'social entrepreneurs' are setting the industry standards.

Is it all too good to be true? Workers, or rather artisans, designers, directors and consumers all satisfied at once? Well it is very much possible and even one person can make an impact. Take a look at Liz Bohannon's Sseko Designs.

The company employs young Ugandan women during their 9 month gap between high school and university, thus helping them save money for tuition fees and gain skills. How can they be so sure? Sseko Designs put half of their employees' salaries into savings accounts which are only accessible when tuition fees are due. In this way, the youngsters avoid the family and peer pressure of spending the money elsewhere and remaining into a vicious cycle of poverty.

After those 9 months, the girls are free to go on and become professionals in a field of their own choice. They are given an opportunity to earn and save and succeed. To become empowered women. And so they have.

DIY Dress

Once upon a time I decided to make my own dress. That was more than 2 years ago, when me and a couple of friends decided to make our own clothes. Off we went to Dubai's and Sharjah's famous souks in search of materials. After looking at countless textiles of various colours and prints I fell in love with this:

Armed with all I needed I went home and started measuring myself, the fabric and drawing cutting lines. With scissors in hand I bravely cut out a rough outline of the dress (seriously what was I thinking?). Then came the difficult bit - stitching the dress together. First of all, although the fabric is of the non-creasing, perfectly falling types, it was also elastic and 100% synthetic. How do you stitch that without a sawing machine? Well, in the end I took a few shots at it and stuffed the half done dress in a bag in my closet.

Fast forward to summer 2012, when my grandmother made the interesting discovery of the unfinished dress. She fell in love with the fabric too and took it back to Bulgaria with her. There we went to the tailor who, after grimacing at the type of textile she had to deal with (apparently it was hard to stitch even with a sawing machine), put the whole thing together. She added the side slits and fitted it at the waist and voila! This is the finished product:

It definitely turned out very beautiful and unique. I've received plenty of compliments and enquiries about it. Although I don't plan on becoming a designer myself, it is good to see something nice came out of it! 

Feel free to share your DIY stories in the comment box below :)


This morning I remembered that I was in possession of a small luxury - a Pearl Drop Chanel nail polish my mum gave me a couple of months ago. I also remembered fellow blogger Maria's fascination with the brand's Peridot colour about which you can read here. With this in mind I decided to give it a try, after all I'm not a big nail polish fan.

Surprisingly all went well. Despite my clumsiness and tendency to pain my whole fingers, application was fairly easy. The polish dried so fast I didn't even have the chance to mess it up (that's what happens usually). The colour is lovely. Fits well with the minimalist, futuristic metallics trends. It is subtle, yet elegant. A worthwhile investment. 

What's your favourite nail polish? Drop your comments below :)