I may be known as the queen of layering (or layered mess to some but doing the pared-down thing is not something I deter from either.  Yes, the t-shirt and jeans thing doesn’t come easy to me but I also know when things can fly solo without too much fuss.  When I saw this oversized vintage Lanvin wool jacket on eBay, I had this odd idea of wearing it as a dress with opaque black tights and not much else.  The sloping, structured shoulders of the jacket nods towards the current season as does the cerise pink.  But as an overcoat, it would have added too much 80’s bulk.  So buttoned up, it’s an easy dresscoat with nothing much needed except some killer shoes.

(Excuse the glum face and awful hair…this should really be worn with a angular expression and a high-as-can-be pony tail….not when you’ve just got up at 5 to leg it for a flight)

In this case, they really are killer int he sense that if I had ninja skills and hi-kicked somebody in the face, that would not be a pretty sight.  Yes, they are those Victoria Secrets hoof boots that are most delectable when on but i’ll be honest and say that my feet are pretty much shattered if I walk down the high street.  They’re for those times when I can afford Addison Lee (cab company) and going somewhere with hopefully a couch.

After my shortlived immersion in Tokyo style, I continued by doing what I used to do to procrastinate from writing my history essays at uni – browse on Japanese online stores, knowing that I could never buy any of the stuff and also getting much satisfaction out of converting Yen into Pounds on XE.com as the figure would shrink dramatically.  Nuan+ is something I stumbled on (I never know HOW I get to these places… I just get there…somehow…).  I can’t really be very detailed about everything as I just go about clicking on the left handside list of labels, a lot of which I’m not familiar with and then see what turns up.  My knowledge of Kanji (Chinese) characters only gets me so far on sites like these.

Some labels like Frapbois, Johanna Ho and Theatre Products are familiar to me from shopping in Hong Kong but it’s basically bags of fun just clicking about on random things and seeing something that REALLY catches you without having a label/name tagging it.  Through Nuan+, I discovered labels that I probably won’t find much decent info on but to know it’s existence is good enough – Full Nelson, Hisui, Carlife and Recipier are all tickling my fancy as you can see in the collages. 

Why, might you ask, have I backed the images with Hong Kong skyscrapers?  Surfing on sites like Nuan+ REALLY stokes up the desire to go fleeing back to Hong Kong on a shopping trip pronto.  It’s been less than a year but more like a lifetime to me.

I guess using Crescent Shop’s exorbitant shipping service (they buy things on Japanese online sites and ship stuff overseas to ppl…for a PREMIUM price!) could work.  Or harassing my Japanese flatmate to help me procure some of this stuff may be a better option. 

Call me a sheep flocker but I just can’t get gradiated colour/ombre effects out of my mind.  Jil Sander SS08, touches of the Louis Vuitton AW07-8, Jonathan Saunders AW07-8….it’s all combusting in my head into a frenzy to have my whole wardrobe fading from one colour to the next.  The shades of sky that Jil Sander’s collection evoked got me all excited when I saw this Bernhard Willhelm shirt dress which has just come into b Store online.  I never got all that fussed about the painters smocks that everyone made into an essential uniform over the summer but this one with the pale blue seeping into the inky navy/black combined with the simplicity of the shape….. if it weren’t for the fact that size small is sold out, I’m pretty much 100% there.

Then I’ve also started to make enquiries about these Nina Ricci resort 08 footless tights which could just be a catwalk prop, not meant for retail but there is a possibility they might be sitting in the Nina Ricci boutique in Paris very soon.  In which case, I’ll have to dip into the ‘special hoisery’ fund (there’s ALWAYS enough for those special tights/socks…) to get these beautifully delicate sheer tights that allow the blue to just about creep up.  If not, then I still intend to do some dip dying experiments (hopefully my flatmates won’t be too horrified that I’ve dyed the bathroom all colours of the rainbow).

Prior to entering the working world, it did seem like I did an awful lot to-ing and fro-ing between London and Hong Kong and as I trawled through the Style Bubble archives, I’m surprised I haven’t written about the joys/miseries of travel attire.  I wonder if it’s because of the practical dreariness of dressing for a flight that has made me shirk away from the subject.  However on the eve of a long haul flight (thankfully not a 12 hour one….), I thought I’d share the mundaneness of flying.  I can’t hide the truth.  It’s a horrendous sight.  It’s not pretty.  It’s not interesting. 

But it is comfortable, practical and suitably scruffy.  I’ve seen girls struggle with tight jeans onboard, unbuttoning them to get some relief.  I’ve seen people go through the metal detectors laden with belts, chains and all sorts of stuff that sets the beeping machine going mad.  I’ve seen women take off their stiletto heels once they realise they have to walk down all the way to gate 55 when boarding.  I’ve also seen people dressing in full anticipation of hot hot heat at their destination but not realising that the flight on the way could be a fridge-like temperature depending on whether the plane decides to act up with the a/c. 

Seeing as I’m not a trackie/sweatpants kinda gal, it’s jersey jersey time for me.  Washed to perfection baggy stripy t-shirt, a grey Grecian jersey top that I heavily abuse for flights and what I have deemed my new travelling skirt – a draped bit of loveliness from Pepa Delight that has pockets for me to shove my hands in and a shape that is ultra fluid.  I do like sleeping on planes with a hat on because it can be useful if the seat is a little on the hard side.  The puffa jacket is for the freezing weather at the moment early in the morning when I leave for Heathrow and also for emergency warmth if said a/c goes berserk but lightweight enough not for it to be a drag when I’m at the airport.  The cardigan is an essential for cosy sleeptime and the footless knitted tights are good for leaving the feet free for putting on those inflight socks which I weirdly like.   

I really have no qualms about walking around like a hobo with a zombie look in my eyes and yes, I’m aware that when I’m sleepily browsing at World Duty Free in T3, people may think I’m going to shoplift a Mac lipstick or two but I’m not giving up my tried-and-tested flight formula.