As part of my job I’ve spent the last few weeks trotting up and down the country following the travelling circus that is the political party conferences. This involves an early start on Sunday to travel to the conference city, arrive at destination (Glasgow, Brighton, Manchester) by late morning and ready to circulate through the hoards of politicians, campaigners and conference delegates by the time that the rest of UK normally reserves for a slap-up lunch.
Going to the conferences is not a dissimilar experience to going to a fashion week: you have to apply for a pass, are subjected to a security screening (not dissimilar to having your website stats scrutinised), and have to organise a hectic calendar of events. In between events you can browse the exhibition, or sit back and spot well-known politicians dashing from place to place flanked by their acolytes and a swarm of photographers. Top spots from this year include Theresa May, William Hague, John Prescott and Ed Balls. Although for all their political import none of these can usurp my favourite fashion week celebrity moment: having Anna Wintour brush past me on her way into a super secret Tom Ford presentation at LFW AW12.
While attending conferences for the first time is a bit of a buzz, by the time I get home I am completely brain dead; barely capable of putting my own underpants in the washing machine, yet alone putting finger to keyboard and dashing off some (not so) elegant prose. There may be a cobweb or two lurking in the corners of this blog, but I am going to do my best shoo away the digital spiders over the coming weeks and get back into a routine. In the meantime, and while my brain recalibrates to non-conference life, here are a few of my favourite bits and pieces from the last month; the little luxuries that have been keeping me sane whilst on the road.
I don’t tend to shop in River Island any more; their designs are frequently too short or too embellished or just too much for me. But when I saw that they had collaborated with Eudon Choi I popped into have a look. And emerged with a sweater. I was completely suckered in by the cable detailing on the front and sleeves. We’ll ignore the part where I keep getting caught on door handles and just focus on the snuggling. Oh wow, this sweater gives good snuggle.
Bringing a bit of class and elegance to the chaotic interior of my bag. Because I don’t know about you, but if I put my Oyster card back into the wrong pocket of my bag, then it might as well be lost forever. Oyster, work ID, train tickets, suddenly all these important things once prone to walkabout are safely corralled into one stylish place.
Normally I don’t bother with make-up, but I look so pale and tired at the moment that I need something to restore me to normality. This trio has my face looking brighter and more awake in no time. Hopefully after a few more weeks of rigorous skincare, excessive veg consumption and early nights I’ll be back to my usual no make-up ways.
I often despair at craft magazines because they are so C.U.T.E. Hats with faces on cute. So it was really nice to open a dressmaking magazine that contained such wearable, modern designs. I have already earmarked the pieces that I want to make, and planned my fabric shopping trip. And if anyone can recommend me any knitting/crochet/dressmaking publications that don’t conflate crafting with cute then please point me at them!
We’re into lip balm season again. A few more weeks of funny weather and my lips will start to crack like baked mud. I’ve gone off Vaseline recently, as it’s just too darn sticky, but this little stick gives soothing moisture along with a hint of natural ‘your-lips-but-better’ colour. Along with fewer ‘aagh my hair is stick to my face’ moments.
My hair has taken a beating this month, along with the rest of me, and this product is the perfect therapy. It’s a pretty aggressive cleaner (I advise using 1-2 times a week max), stripping away all the oils, any product residue, and the standard coating of London grime that my hair accumulates. The citrus smell alternately reminds me of lemon meringue pie and toilet cleaner, but the effects are brilliant. Combined with a spot of Soap & Glory Glad Hair Day conditioner, I end up with really shiny, soft, fluffy hair. Just how I like it.
So there you have it, a marathon trundle through some of my favourite things this month. What have you lovely lot been up to?