Paris with my ‘The Brewer’ Holdall

Hit by the tough economic downturn as well as recent unrest there seems to be quite a big divide in opinion when it comes to Paris:     It’s beautiful- it’s dirty, it’s exciting- it’s dangerous, it’s cool- it’s run down, it’s delicious- it’s full of fast food

I Paris hop regularly and am never 100% sure how I feel about going these days, when the sun is shining I think ‘OK, it will be fine’ but when it rains I wonder ‘what on earth am I doing going there in the first place?’

For my most recent mid-April trip I left Kings Cross International ‘armed’ with my lovely ‘The Brewer’ travel holdall, now that on its own (I confess) is enough to put me in a good mood.

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A couple of hours later I arrive ,Paris is kind and greets me with sunny skies. I set off on my mad schedule, I certainly know how to pack in a full day’s work made easier by the fact that I’ve been so many times that making a B line from the station to my favourite haunts is second nature.

Say what you will, there is always something new and exciting to discover here and that is what really makes Paris so unique.

So a quick run-down of what excited me this time:

An amazing cheese shop caught my eye, the large milk urns leading to the door and the outdoor cooled fridge packed with cheeses .Even though I didn’t buy or try any it was just spectacular.

It’s asparagus and strawberry season and all the green grocers have them out on display, they just look so good and they display them so beautifully

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Lunch break for me and my bag ….

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In a little corner café I take the ‘dish of the day’  which turns out to be the most delicious home-made ravioli and green salad.  I just love it that in France it is completely cool to wipe clean the sauce on your plate with your bread, how good is that!

 

The flats in Central Paris, especially the buildings that taper into a corner are beautiful.

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The independent clothing boutiques are the best I have seen anywhere, absolutely and without a doubt.  But even the larger Dept stores embrace fashion in the grandest of manner. So Spring has hit Printemps and you just can’t miss the buzz, large floral rabbits included.

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As I step out of Printemps the heavens open, hailstones the size of golf balls followed by a heavy downpour. I head on back into Printemps and the quiet oasis which is the Cojean café in the lower ground floor. White and silver minimalism, healthy alternative snacks and salads, vegan cakes and lots of lovely teas. My tray looks great on the table top and my The Brewer holdall looks even better hanging from its under table bag hanger- how thoughtful of them to do this.   Any bag designer and bag lover reading this blog will totally get this,surely this is what life is all about.

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Back at the Gare du Nord I regroup my thoughts, the intention was to go to Paris armed solely with my Brewer travel holdall which is very spacious and to fill it up with a few bits and pieces bought on the way and that’s it.

Did I stick to my plan? Why of course not, too many things to buy in Paris!!

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

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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.

SO WHERE WOULD YOU LIKE TO HAVE YOUR TEA SERVED?

The dining room or the parlour?

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

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No tables left? How about the toilet then?

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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!)

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

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

The perfect bag for a Diva

HAPPINESS IS… seeing the beautiful  AILYN PEREZ with her red ‘The Cut’ clutch bag!The fast rising star of the Opera world, Soprano Ailyn Perez  Currently Violetta in The Royal Opera House production of La Traviata and promoting the release of her much awaited duet album with husband Stephen Costello.  Talented, beautiful and sweet she even took a few minutes of time out to pose with her new clutch, our red, Nadia Minkoff London  The Cut/SE1 … thank you, made my day!

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Dana’s Blog: Day 5

Hello everyone!

Hope you all had a nice weekend (we had a long one here in the UK!)

Today I revised the magazine contact list again. It seems like everyone in the fashion journalism industry changes jobs every fortnight, as the contact info I’ve found is usually outdated.

Nadia helped me edit my press release as well. As I said, it was my first attempt at it so it needed quite a bit of help, especially in targeting it to the intended audience. My version sounded a little too descriptive and wasn’t selling the bag as much it should have, whilst the edited one makes you want to run out and buy it (which you should all do anyway). I’m doing another one this week though so I’ll be sure to let you know how that’s going.

Check out some pictures from the weekend on Instagram, Tumblr, Facebook, and Twitter, and let me know what you think in the comments below (please actually do it so I don’t end up like this meme):

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Also, Nadia blogged yesterday about this cute little library she spotted, it’s worth a look!

Have a great afternoon!

To have and to hold… musings of a bag lady

I’ve finally got my own regular feature in a magazine I really like, how cool is that? It took me a while to get going, having agreed to the column I suddenly had writers block, followed by prolonged hesitation and a lot of doubt. My monthly feature ‘musings of a bag lady’ is really just that :bags, more bags, accessories, trends and I’m guessing yet more bags! But I hope to share with my readers a mix of ‘inside’ knowledge from the industry and my personal take on what is currently trending and why.

Please have a read through the first one ‘ to have and to hold’ and let me know what you think, would love to have your feedback.

Also, you can bag yourself ( excuse the pun) one of our lovely St Johns Wood tote bags in dark Navy, Women Talking are running a competition for this bag and the details are on the page. It’s a very , very lovely bag so be sure to enter!

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Nadia Minkoff London, St Johns Wood tote in Navy Blue leather

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WIN tickets for our London Fashion Week catwalk!

WIN tickets for our London Fashion Week catwalk!

If you love fashion and are in London on Sept 14th 2013, here’s your chance to win a ticket for you and a friend to see our London Fashion Week catwalk with Nico Didonna in central London. just email us at enquiries@nadiaminkoff.com or tweet us @NadiaMinkoff and let us know your names. You’ve got till midday Wed Sept 11th to enter so hurry, hurry!

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Win a Nadia Minkoff London, embroidered Kew silk clutch

Win a Nadia Minkoff London, embroidered Kew silk clutch

To celebrate the launch of our new summer 2013 collection in our on-line shop we will be giving one lucky winner our gorgeous silk, hand embroidered Kew clutch bag in a colour of their choice.
TO WIN:
1) Visit our on-line shop http://www.nadiaminkoff.com/shop/embroid.html to decide which colour you want, once you’ve decided leave your comment in the FB box on that page
2) If you haven’t done so already make sure to fill in your name and email address on this page http://www.nadiaminkoff.com/signup.html We will notify our winner by email so this is vital!
3) Alternatively just email us at enquiries@nadiaminkoff.com with your chosen colour and your name.

We will be picking our winner on Sunday 28th, good luck!!