Recharging – Personal Trainer Time Out

Personal Trainer ( PT) : Liza Wright Fitness /What The Squat

Vacation: Paphos, Cyprus

Hotel: Asimina Suits Hotel

Travelled : Gatwick London to Paphos with BA

Bag: The Essential Borough Bag in Magenta

So here goes….

Apparently if you’re a Personal Trainer you choose your holiday accommodation by the gym! No fully equipped gym in the hotel = it’s a no go.

It’s also the first thing you check on arrival.

The gym at the Asimina Suits was good ,fully equipped with everything you need (how considerate that it even matched the Magenta Borough bag)

Post training you can finally relax poolside , you can even eat 🙂

The Asimina Suits hotel had the best breakfast buffet , as well as 4 excellent restaurants and the level of service was outstanding.

Give it a couple of days and you get into vacation mode, you still train but you let go and realise just how much you needed the break.

Both the hotel pool and private beach were great. But the real magic is sitting under the old olive trees in the hotel grounds

There is plenty of delicious local food to explore at night.

However, the favourite restaurant had to be : Koutourou Ouzeri

Don’t be fooled by the ‘small’ sharing dishes, they are far from small but try them all, they are delicious.

In conclusion:

Everyone needs time out, even the fittest need down time to recharge their batteries.

Thank you Paphos, it was great!

Find out more about training with Liza Wright online or in person :


Instagram: @what.thesquat

Happy Eastover!

Hi everyone!

Hope you’ve had a wonderful holiday weekend!
Whether it be Easter, Passover, or just another weekend in quarantine, it’s difficult to be away from friends and family. I am currently quarantined with my parents, which is about as harmonious as a gaggle of 4 year olds playing the recorder, but I am missing my friends and colleagues quite significantly.

What I am most grateful for is that this is happening in 2020, and not during the days of dial up internet and Nokias (though honestly, an unbeatable phone, it could get run over by a tractor and survive). In some ways, I think I’ve spent more time with my people than I would have normally. A little too much probably.

I’ve had movie nights on Netflix Party, played trivia and drawing games on Houseparty, lost at multiple pub quizzes, and baked cinnamon rolls with a friend. I didn’t get to eat any of the cinnamon rolls so it was really quite the tease, but at least the intentions were good.

I read somewhere that instead of calling it “lockdown” or “distancing,” we’re meant to call it “cocooning,” in order to relieve stress the harsher words induce. I’m not sure if the wordplay works, but I’ve found that spending quality, dedicated time with people I care about has made this time so much better.

I’m physically distancing, but I’m more social than ever.

I hope wherever you are, you’re surrounded by people, even if not in person.

Bonus pic of me and my best friend engrossed in a very candid chat.


Dana’s Quarantine Diary

Hello everyone!

Hope you are staying safe with ample amounts of toilet paper, and that you’re enjoying your one form of exercise a day.

During this time, it is easy to be inundated with suggestions to enhance “productivity,” how to spend this perilous time learning Mandarin while homeschooling 3 children, or growing botanical herbs in the garden. If one more person tells me Shakespeare wrote King Lear while in quarantine I might cry.

However, I prefer a more realistic approach to lockdown. Below are a few things I’ve been doing to pass the time.

  1. A jigsaw puzzle

Somehow I had managed to reach the ripe old age of 24 before engaging with a jigsaw puzzle. To be honest I have no patience and didn’t really see the point of spending hours putting pieces together to pull them apart at the end. But desperate times. I’m proud to say with the help of my father I completed a 200 piece puzzle aimed at children ages 8 and above. Hold your applause.


2. Netflix

I must admit, I got a little nervous that I would finish all the content available on Netflix. I even watched some Argentinian true crime (thanks for the rec, Nadia) in trying to stagger my viewing, which ended up being the best thing I’ve watched in years. Using this time to slow down and veg out in front of the TV with family is the best. Trust me.

     3. Nadia’s Workshop Take Home Kit

Once this is all over, your first outdoor excursion should be to one of Nadia’s workshops. I happen to have the hand eye coordination of a newborn lemur, but Nadia and the most amazing team managed to coach me into creating a beautiful necklace (if I may say so myself) which made for a wonderful birthday present for my mum. The new at home kits paired with her Youtube videos allow you to make the same creations at home. I can’t wait to make more to wear to all the post quarantine soirees.


4. Download Tik Tok, feel old, get confused, delete it

This activity I cannot recommend in good conscience, it will leave you feeling geriatric and googling what the “Savage” is.

To conclude, this time is weird for everyone and we’re all just doing the best we can. Don’t let people online make you feel bad for not doing at home Yogalates or creating healthy and “delicious” (I don’t buy it) kale protein bars. If you woke up this morning and washed your hair, you’ve already accomplished more than I have.

Stay safe and take care of each other, as me and my best friend demonstrate below.



Make it a London Christmas / Part 2

I have found concluding 2018 difficult, it’s been a tough year in general ,most certainly for the High Street and for anyone who works in fashion. I wish I could say I am ending it on a high and feeling optimistic for 2019, hard as I try I am not. But I most certainly don’t want to end it on a low and I am certainly hopeful that 2019 will surprise me for the better.

I will let London, my source of inspiration,do the talking for me. Captured by photographer Dennis Madden over the festive period and right up to date 31/12/18, New Years Eve.

From Trafalgar square, to China Town

Trafalgar square

china town

The all new Coal Drops Yard in Kings Cross, and the iconic Royal Albert Hall

Coal drops yard

Royal Albert Hall

From towering Christmas trees in Euston, to ho ho ho in Soho, and some much needed Angels in Regent Street



Regent st

Spectacular skies over Waterlow Park in Highgate

Highgate woods

And last, but most certainly not least, my very own Waterloo sunset


Wishing you all health, happiness and good fortune in 2019

x Nadia


Bag: The brewer holdall as my on-board luggage and The Hoxton bag for my daily use


Flight: London to Gibraltar, approx. 3 hours.  I had an unsettling early morning flight having been sat next to an extremely drunk and rather intimidating group, out on their stag do. Adieu Monarch, can’t say I will miss you.

Gibraltar to Cadiz: approx. 1hr 40 mins by car

Stayed at: El Puerto, 10km outside Cadiz


Ate breakfast at: Bar Vicente, owned by 3 generations of the same family, next door to the local market so the perfect spot for people watching. Had a traditional breakfast of Pan con tomate with coffee and freshly squeezed orange juice for only 4 Euros. Could sit there every day.

Ate Tapas at: Bar Apolo, recently renovated, delicious freshly cooked food and great value. Be sure to try the local cuttlefish Choco

hoxton cadiz

Visited:  Cadiz, ferry crossing to Cadiz from El Puerto takes 25 minutes and costs 2.65 Euros one way. The central market sells fish like you have never seen, but go early as they close early. Have to confess I struggled with the sharks


Street food– plenty of choice surrounding the market, I settled for La Taperia de Lula, don’t miss it! They certainly know how to cook the most delicious regional dishes including Arroz Negro– rice with squid ink.


Swam at: Las Redes, the best and longest stretch of beach, perfect for swimming and walking but very full at the weekends.


Excursion: Sanlucar de Barrameda. All that you would expect from a traditional, white Spanish Village: sun washed central square, bars, cafe’s and ice cream parlours. Some lovely historic sites here as well.


Drink: sherry out of the cask at Bodegas Obregon and why not have a small tapas whilst your at it


Buy: Tejas ( Tile biscuits) flat , handmade almond biscuits to die for from Cien Palacios- it’s all they do and they come in beautiful tins.  A fan from the market if you really want a piece of Spain to take back home.


Take advantage of our 50% discount offer 22-10 to 29-10-17 bu ising code:

hoxtoncream17 at the checkout. (Free UK p&p, whilst stock lasts)



So where do you want your tea served? The Hallway? The Parlour or possibly the toilet?


After a challenging couple of months, I finally got to fully relax this past weekend. Sunday brought with it London spring sunshine, glorious! I headed straight out to my winter battered garden, time to clear up, discover what survived the cold winter and get the garden ready for planting new arrivals.

But the real, REAL treat was Afternoon Tea at Edith’s House. I guess in some ways this newest arrival to North London’s Crouch End is simply bonkers but in fact it is absolutely perfect.

Step in through the front door, back in time, into your Auntie or grandma’s  house, kitsch galore, melamine furniture in abundance, lace, wallpaper and bygone knick-knacks.


The dining room or the parlour?


Sat on the bed in the bedroom or perhaps in the hallway?


No tables left? How about the toilet then?



Décor aside (and that was pretty good) the scones are top notch, hot, fresh ,tasty, different and the tea and coffee are Superb ( I opted for the Cinnamon scone, yum!)


Last but not least, the house pooch Roux, trying to convince you to share some of your food…




One thing I know for sure is that I’m most definitely coming back!

Time to get creative with Liberty London

I’ve had a long an enjoyable history with Liberty London and taking part in their ‘get creative’ event last week felt like coming full circle.

Whilst doing my BA in fashion, I landed a weekend job at Liberty London, which had been my favourite London store from a young age, I had always dreamt of working there.

When I set up my accessory business, Liberty was a prime target for me and I did in fact get listed and sold my creations in both Liberty London as well as the other Liberty stores which were dotted up and down the UK. It was a great outlet and one I was very proud of.  During the 1996 recession Liberty closed its nationwide stores , scaled down its London foothold concentrating on it’s renowned London Tudor façade store on the corner of Regent St and Great Marlborough street, ensuring it was still a prime destination for those visiting London and purveyors of fine taste.

When the buying team at Liberty contacted me recently to see if I would be interested helping out with their new ‘flowers of Liberty’ accessories range, I was of course delighted- some old flames never die I guess, I  certainly still love that store with a passion.

On Friday October 4th, together with my two assistants Sawako and Sheena, we set out to ‘get creative’ on the shop floor. The idea being that for that afternoon, we would accessories any bracelet or necklace purchased from the range with a variety of Nadia Minkoff London charms and we were fortunate enough to be sponsored by  Swarovski Elements with beautiful beads and pearls.

Much enjoyed by both parties, being the lucky ladies who got to personalise their charm trinkets and us- who enjoyed the direct contact, feedback and the beauty of the store- it was joyous afternoon and we look forward to doing it again, in the very near future.

Some photos we took on the afternoon to follow, you can also check out what Liberty made of it all in The Liberty Blog













Anyone who told you that the fashion business is a treadmill that you daren’t step off once you got on, knew what they were saying and trust me, they were not exaggerating.

Fashion designers seem to ‘live’ a year ahead of the general public, when it’s summer we are busy showing next year’s winter collection. And during the winter, it’s next summer for us.

The pinnacle of the season for those of us lucky enough is a catwalk during fashion week, our 10 minutes of glory, which can often make or break a season. Months of preparation condensed into some 10-20 minutes of baring our all in front of guests and press and whatever stress goes on behind the scenes- upfront it’s a sea of calm.

Happy to say my collaboration with London designer Nico Didonna continues to evolve, as does our friendship. In fact I can honestly say that this friendship and trust is what makes it bearable, exciting and ultimately successful. For the past 3 seasons we showed together at London Fashion Week but this season Nico was invited to present his new Winter 2015 collection in New York & Philadelphia and we joined the ride.

I could say a lot about the clothing and the accessories, too much in fact but I think it’s fair to say that the emphasis was on glamour, curves and sparkles….Hollywood in a nutshell!


Fitted long Jersey dress with thigh high slit by Nico Didonna,  teamed up with our crescent statement earrings available from Wolf & Badger 



Wool trousers and draped jersey top by  Nico Didonna, teamed up with our statement crescent earrings available from Wolf & badger 



Draped evening dress by Nico Didonna teamed up with our Hex Earrings 










Statement statement, draped evening dresses by Nico Didonna  with our catwalk exclusive Swarovski crystal statement necklaces



Draped jersy shift dress and tailored jacket, by Nico Didonna, teamed up with our Belgravia clutch bag 

Dana’s Blog: Final Day

Hey everyone! Today is my last day, sadly. I’ve had the best time here and couldn’t have asked for nicer people to work with. They even got me cupcakes!



Today I sent over the trade press release, and then worked on sending the website people exactly what it is we want to change. I’m really excited about all the minor changes that have been made while I’ve been here and I can’t wait to see them all when they’re done.


I really want to thank you all for reading, I hope you’ve enjoyed keeping up with the company and have also learned a little bit about what goes on behind the scenes.


Finally, Nadia, thank you so much for absolutely everything. You made me feel welcome the second I started and I’ve learned so much from you. Hopefully I wasn’t too much of an inconvenience!


Have a good weekend everyone!