For reasons unknown to me, many seem to admire modern Japanese anime cartoons, comics, illustrations, etc. Part of the nature of living in Japan is that over the years you get used to the fact that you’ll see and hear about a lot of unique places and things catering to niche markets that you’d be unlikely to find anywhere else in the world at that moment. One of these things is anime cafés.
If you’ve yet to spend any time in the charming/luxurious Sloane Square neighborhood I’d suggest venturing over on a Saturday to take full advantage of their tasty Duke of York Square food market just a couple of minutes walk from the tube station. Highlights include the freshly baked patisserie, desserts, breads, cheese and worldly cuisine on offer.
Homemade fudge that blew my tastebuds! As usual I wanted to try them all and couldn’t settle on just one flavor so ultimately I decided to go for a bar of chocolate marshmallow, maltesers, and a pistachio bar. Naughty but oh so delicious.
When planning my escape to Brighton I had hoped for sunshine and nice weather but instead I got chilly winds hmph…. However, I wouldn’t let a little bad weather get in the way of my big adventure so I carried on like a trooper and had a fabulous time.
For lunch I went full on British and indulged in some of “the best fish ‘n’ chips in Brighton” from the Palm Court restaurant on Brighton Pier before heading on towards the entertainment and rides offered a bit further down on the Pier.
I imagined Brighton to be a relatively small, picturesque beach front town but instead I experienced it as any other modern town filled with a mix of unique beautiful little shops and then the typical unattractive tourist shops and fast food chains. There was even a version of the London Eye!
Whilst on the Brighton Pier I got a total déjà vu of the first time that I visited Santa Monica Pier in California. Piers can be so much fun and it certainly doesn’t hurt that the view tends to be great.
Today I’m indoors sketching for a new collection that I’ll continue to work on in Tokyo over the summer. I like to get a bit of a head start whenever I can and the ideas are flowing so I manage to get quite a few sketches out of it. The clothing line will be a perfect complement to the new additions in my jewelry line. I think I’ll even go so far as to create an original print for my designs as it feels so much more genuine and personal than picking up something from a popular fabric shop. For London, my go to store tends to be Cloth House on Berwick Street that stocks beautiful, wholesome linen and cotton fabrics. Overly synthetic materials make me cringe so they are definitely out of the question.
The weather is beautiful and it’s finally t-shirt and shorts weather again so I decide to head outdoors so that it’s not wasted. I take a walk through Kensington Park where much to my amusement they’ve installed a merry-go-round. I simply can’t resist reliving fond memories from my childhood so I hop on for a few rounds. My all time favorite ride at amusement parks and fair grounds was always the merry-go-round so I couldn’t be happier! It feels like I’m the female and more stylish version of Owen Wilson’s character in the Woody Allen film Midnight in Paris (2011) when he nostalgically and mysteriously finds himself going back to the 1920s every day at midnight. It’s absolutely charming!
After a dizzying few spins on the merry-go-round I make my way over to Wholefoods to stock up on some groceries for a dinner soirée that I’m planning. I simply can’t resist their delicious Chaumes cheese, kalmata olive spread and freshly baked bread. I’m hoping my guests will be equally taken.
At long last I have a morning that allows me to sleep in so I take full advantage and don’t rise until past noon. Since that throws any hopes of having a productive start to my day I head on over to Ottolenghi to have brunch and to catch up with a friend that I haven’t seen in forever. Their food always makes me feel ultra healthy up until the point where I misbehave and order a dessert. I decide to try their rhubarb tart and of course it’s delicious. Both of their cookbooks Plenty and Ottolenghi – The Cookbook decorate my personal library so I know very well what I’m in for. Oh dear, it would be so much easier if I didn’t like cakes, pastry, chocolate and cookies as much as I do.
Then on a full stomach it’s time to get working again. My latest project is a photography one so I bring along my camera (which is with me most of the time anyway) for a stroll around the Chelsea, Notting Hill area and end up taking in the busy sights of Portobello Road. It’s a party, the streets are lively with musicians rocking tunes, antiques exchanging hands, plants, kitschy London souvenir shops, smoothie and food vendors, animals and a ridiculous amount of baby strollers line the streets. Although I often dread overly busy streets, today it works to my advantage as people are exactly what I’m in search of.
I get exactly what I came for but for now I’ll have to wait to reveal the official images to you all. Soon though darlings I promise. On Pembridge Road, I, like everyone else stops to gawk at the jewelry in Hirst Antiques. It’s total eye candy as almost everything glitters and sparkles. Inside the boutique the display cases are stuffed with accessories which are organized by color. The diva inside me is convinced that I’d look absolutely amazing in everything I see but luckily my common sense hasn’t gone entirely out the window so for today I manage to resist turning into a showgirl.
For those of you that don’t already know, I absolutely adore all of the wonderful naughty things that people try to stay away from during their diets and that is pâtisserie. In all honest to god truth, could you say that your life isn’t that much better when biting into a really tasty tarte aux framboises, tart aux fraises, or gelato? I decided to treat myself with just this at Gucci Café in Ginza, Tokyo. On the dessert menu was black currant gelato with an orange tart. Total bliss!
Tonight it’s really raining cats and dogs outside, it might possibly even be a typhoon so I’m taking full advantage of the comfort of the indoors by hosting a little soirée with friends. The Veuve Clicquot is flowing and the cheese is perfectly French and stinky, just the way I like it. Have a wonderful evening darlings!