Shopping for your pet pooch who’s trendy to the point of rivaling you, has never been as stylish or fun as it is here in Tokyo. Colorful raincoats, pet IQ training toys, doggie carrier bags that look like luxury handbags and bedazzled leashes are just some of the must-haves.
Truth be told, I probably have far too many scented candles in my rooms at the moment and probably don’t need any more but who can resist a good collaboration? Fashion designer Giambattista Valli has teamed up with French luxury candle maker Cire Trudon to create two limited edition scented candles. Rose Poivrée combines the divine scent of roses with Tuscan black pepper and comes with a black motto on clear glass in a baby pink box. Positano transports you to the Amalfi Coast with its notes of gardenia, orange blossom, jasmine, magnolia, tuberose and lily and comes with a white motto on white glass, in a white box.
Both scents are lovely and relatively light compared to some of the heavier Cire Trudon scents so it’s perfect for summer. Not only does it make a wonderful gift to yourself because you clearly deserve it, but it could also make the perfect gift when attending those luscious summer weddings if you’re stumped for ideas.
Accessories are a vital part of any good wardrobe and the task of finding new and exciting additions isn’t too difficult when living in Tokyo. The challenging part is not getting carried away when presented with endless options.
As the days are still short, dark and cold, I find myself increasingly relying on the comfortable light and warmth provided by candles. One of my favorite candle boutiques is Cire Trudon that lies tucked away on 36 Chiltern Street, a quite street in Marylebone, only a short walk from my second home the Wallace Collection.
The beautiful little boutique stocks a full range of iconic pillar candles with cameos, wax busts, perfumed candles and room sprays that are simply oh so decadent. One of my favorite perfumed candle scents would probably have to be Abd El Kader with top notes of spearmint, lemon, blackcurrant bud, apple, ginger, clover, a middle of jasmin and a base of vanilla.
Although it’s no secret that I enjoy frequenting the luxury lined streets of Tokyo’s Ginza district, the best part has to be when I stumble upon something new and slightly out of the ordinary that isn’t part of the big brand names that fill the advert sections of magazines. So, tucked away on Suzuran-Dori, one of the quieter streets of Ginza I found the charming French luxury tea emporium Mariage Frères.
The boutique’s walls are lined with a vast selection of exotic loose-leaf teas and everything else that you could possibly need to enjoy a good cuppa tea. I picked up a box of thé blanc au parfum de fleurs de cerisier (white tea with cherry blossom flavor) that smells like candy. Other amusing flavors that I’ll have to try at some point includes ‘sexy tea’ a ‘floral black tea, with seductive notes of red berries’ and ‘black opera’ a ‘velvety black tea with rich notes of fruit and vanilla’.
The minimalist art consists of a landscape grid of highways leading to nowhere, orchestrated by an automated Audi car windshield wiper. The wiper acts as a conductor, standing on a fragile steel column with two small loudspeakers playing ♪ Erik Satie’s Furniture Music ♪. I however, couldn’t keep from humming the tune of ♪ AC/DC’s Highway to Hell ♪ in my head as I viewed.
For the avid travelers and London residents/enthusiasts here’s a sneak peak into the perfect book for you. Luxury brand Louis Vuitton has paired up with Japanese graphic designer and illustrator Natsko Seki in order to produce this fun take on a travel book. Using a combination of collage, hand drawn illustrations and images made using the latest computer and photographic tools/technique, Natsko Seki captures the urban adventures that London as a city has to offer mixed with a certain amount of affectionate nostalgia towards the picturesque places.
The book includes a diverse range of locations covering everything from tube stations to museums, iconic buildings, markets, shops, department stores, parks and restaurants. It definitely makes for an interesting read (if you can really call it that since the book doesn’t include text) where time is spent either reminiscing about the time and memories you yourself have of those places or you become curious to visit the places that you’ve yet to properly acquaint yourself with.
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.