Magnificent Munich: Weekend Adventures in Jeans and Lace

Dear Munich,

I am so glad I came to visit you this past weekend.  One of your residents is a great friend of mine.  We met while we were both residing in Mumbai and her friendship and kindness have ensured me a friend for life.  I am lucky that she came back to your arms as it gave me the opportunity to visit.

Over exaggerated praise can sometimes ring hollow, however, superlatives must have a purpose and I intend to employ them diligently. I will start by saying what you must have heard many times before – you are a beautiful city. Your skyline is stunning, the churches and squares majestic and the markets and parks enchanting.

We both know that aesthetic beauty can be found in many a destination but true appreciation hinges on a deeper connection.  Within your magnificent form, there is a calm and serenity that I have rarely encountered in a big city. To praise you, without talking about your culinary delights, would be a grave omission on my part. The beer, especially the wheat beer, surpassed my expectations and I shall find myself scrambling to find your best in London.  The sausages, pretzels and wiener schnitzel were delicious and I have discovered an unexpected fondness for sauverkraut.  Pastry is the secret path to my culinary heart and you had me at Strudel.

I marveled at the architecture and climbing up St. Peters church for the magnificent views from the walkway took away my breath, both figurative and real.  The movement of the tiny platform as the mightly church bells rung stopped my beating heart but I soon recovered with some delicious Weiss beer on terra firma. There is no better feeling as a tourist than when you thoroughly enjoy even what you were not expecting to enchant.  I now understand why BMW World is the most visited attraction in Munich.  Finally, I must state that your Olympic Park built for the 1972 games in the city is an architectural and town planning masterpiece.  I loved the views and walks incorporated within the sporting arenas and would highly recommend it to fellow travellers, especially those with young children.

I came to see you with no particular expectations. I left, looking forward to experiencing your hospitality again, sooner rather than later.  I bought some lebkuchen at the airport to help your memory linger for longer in the recesses of my mind.

Thank you for a lovely weekend!

With love and admiration,

Isha

Clothes and Accessories: 

Blue Dress  – Zara

White sneakers – Massimo Dutti

Pink Coat – Miss Selfridges

Pink Scarf – Mango

The Power of Shoes and Bags: With a Striped Hobo and Monk Strap Shoes

What really makes you feel like a million bucks on a normal day?  In particular, which part of your wardrobe satisfies you most on the fashion front, on a run of the mill day when you are not dressed up for a special occasion?

For me, the answer would be a fabulous pair of shoes and a gorgeous handbag. In my opinion, shoes and handbags are the power couple of fashion.  Together, they can command such attention that the clothes in between them can pale into insignificance. The fact that shoes and bags are not influenced by our current size, only makes them more attractive and shining stars in our wardrobe.

It was love at first sight with these double monk-strap shoes and the fact that they were navy was the icing on the cake. I am a huge fan of stripes and the beautiful red, white and blue stripes on this hobo along with the sporty strap instantly grabbed my attention. I have paired them with a simple pair of blue jeans and a denim shirt dress with stand-out pockets.  My long-line grandfather cardigan works perfectly with the outfit and adds a touch of pattern to the overall styling.

I hope you enjoy this lookbook and thank you so much for reading.  Have a fabulous weekend ahead!

Clothes and Accessories: 

Denim Dress – Boohoo (currently £6)

Handbag – Tory Burch

Monk Strap Shoes – Massimo Dutti

Cardigan – Sainsburys Tu clothing

 

Easy, Breezy: In a Patterned and Striped Kurta Top

A few weeks ago, a friend came over and after a while when we contemplated eating lunch, I realized I had nothing substantial in the fridge to offer.  “No worries”, said my friend, “I will make a sandwich with this tub of hummus and cheese”. She proceeded to make both of us sandwiches with crusty bread, hummus, cheese and hot Sriracha sauce.  I am so glad that she made the sandwich (my hostess skills left much to be desired at this point) simply because I loved the way it tasted! Now I can’t stop eating that sandwich and I would be happy to eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner (it is a pity that my husband is not as enamoured by it as I am).  It would seem that my tastebuds are having a torrid relationship with these ingredients but I have been here before and the love affair usually ends as quickly as it starts. One morning soon, I am going to wake up and want a pastry for breakfast and the Sainsbury’s hummus suppliers are going to see a dip in their profits!

I have had similarly intense love affairs with certain clothes – I find myself wearing them all the time and then one day I put them away and don’t want to see them again for a while. However, when I rediscover them, that love returns in droves as I marvel at my good fortune for buying that particular item of clothing. That is exactly what has happened with this kurta top!

I loved the bright stripes on this kurta and wore it all the time when I first purchased it.  Then, I was bedazzled by others that came after and unfortunately it was cast aside for a while.  Recently, when I pulled it out from the box under my bed (I desperately need one of those glamorous walk in closets I see in all the home magazines) I fell in love with its beautiful embroidery and vibrant pattern all over again. It is such an easy breezy kurta top to wear and despite wearing it so often, I always feel feminine and pretty when I wear it.  In my opinion, that is the hallmark of a successful purchase!

Have a great weekend and thank you for taking the time to visit my blog.

(Clothes and accessories: Kurta top – Ahilaya, Jeans – Zara, Clutch – Topshop, Ring – Isharya)

The ‘Fabulous Flats’ Series: My Take On Building a Great ‘Flats’ Shoe Collection

I absolutely adore flats!  One of the many benefits of being a woman is having a wide variety of shoes to choose from. While I thoroughly enjoy wearing heels, the reality is that flats are my absolute go-to shoes on most days of the year. As spring is upon us, soon the weather will be warm enough to ditch the boots but not warm enough for sandals. During this ‘transitional’ time,  flats really are the ultimate ‘transitional’ shoes.

As a long-term wearer of flats, these are my recommendations for building a great collection of flats:

  1. Buy the best flats that your budget will allow: If you are someone who will wear flats to work and to an evening out (as I will) buy the best flats that your budget will allow. Personally, I have always spent more on flats than I have on heels.  A great pair of flats makes the outfit and my flats always get more repeat wear than heels, making them far more cost-effective in the long run.
  2. Vary the style of flats in your wardrobe: There is such a wide variety of flat shoes available including ballet pumps, loafers, brogues and pointed-toe flats. Try buying a different style each time and enjoy the styling options that come with each type of shoe.
  3. Recognize that some flats are not meant for all purposes: Just like certain heels are meant to be worn for just a few hours over dinner (lest you lose all sensation in your feet), in the same manner certain delicately soled flats are not meant for all day wear. Choose styles with hardier soles for all day wear; your feet and posture will thank you!
  4. Buy flats in various colours: Often, there is a tendency to buy flat shoes in functional neutral colours such as black, grey and beige. While this a good strategy, there are so many beautiful flats available in an array of rich colours. Incorporate some of these into your shoes collection for ‘standout’ styling.
  5. Appreciate the power of statement flats: Statement flats can deliver that powerful combination of comfort and style. I can spot a pair of statement flats a mile off and they always stand out from the crowd for me.

I have had these pair of purple Ferragamo flats in my wardrobe for years and they look as beautiful today as they did the day I bought them. They are the ideal shoes for when you are happy to go out, just as long as you can wear your jeans and flat shoes (I fall into this category more often than not). I have paired them with a lovely silk statement tie-sleeve blouse and my most comfortable skinny jeans.

I hope you enjoy this look and thank you for visiting my blog.

(Clothes and accessories: Top – Warehouse, Shoes – Salvatore Ferragamo, Jeans – Zara, Clutch – Asos)

Ending The Summer Vacation: In A Blue Embroidered Jacket And Jeans

After many lovely weeks of summer vacation spent with my family in the USA, I am home! In the last few days of my vacation we attended a family wedding.  I met many relatives I had not seen in a while and they were all keen to know what I was doing since our return from India. I was a bit reluctant to talk about the blog as I did not want to be seen as one of those people who only talk about themselves and their latest endeavours.  My brother must have sensed my hesitation and later  gave me a pep talk about how I must tell people about my blog and promote my creativity and hard work.

Landing at Gatwick, it was lovely to see the lush green English countryside and feel a surprising warmth in the air. As I waited in the immigration queue at the airport, I couldn’t wait to get home and have a nice cup of tea.  Finally, it was our turn and we were called up to the desk of the next immigration officer. She checked our passports and then asked the usual questions like where we were coming from and how long we had been out of the country. She then asked me, “What do you do?”

My mind darted back to my brother’s pep talk and suddenly I decided to take the bull by its horns.  “I am a fashion blogger”, I said confidently.  As the officer looked at me (possibly wondering what kind of fashion blogger I was as I looked like I I had stuck my finger in an electric socket), my younger son piped up and said, “that is not a profession mummy, you don’t make any money doing it”.  I looked at his little face, still in shock at his statement, when he continued with his pearls of wisdom for the officer.  ” At the moment, she is a house…house…what do you call that thing – yes she is a house keeper!”

Highly embarrassed, I looked sheepishly at the officer who was trying very hard not to laugh.  “Housewife, housewife – is the word you are looking for darling”, I said wondering what the chances were of the ground opening up and swallowing me  – or preferably him! By now, the officer looked like we had made her day, so I quickly picked up our passports and rushed off mumbling my thank yous.

Once I had retrieved our bags and some of my dignity, I asked him why he thought house wife was a profession as I didn’t recall getting a formal pay check in that line of work either! He didn’t have an answer but I assume he learned the word ‘housewife’ at school. It is now high time for him to return to school and learn that very important lesson of not talking to immigration officers unless he is spoken to!

On a different note, I have definitely been having a ‘jacket moment’ throughout the last few months.  They lend themselves so well to creating an ‘effortlessly chic’ look that works for everyone, from housekeepers to housewives. These ‘boho’ type jackets are perfect for the transitional weather we will experience in the next few months and they add a layer of warmth without suffocating you. They can be paired with so many tops and jeans and I find that they have a synergistic effect in that the sum of the whole outfit is greater than the parts that make it up.

Now that I am back, I am looking forward to ‘lookbooking’ autumn/winter looks as the weather gets colder.  Please do let me know if there is a particular kind of look you would like to see on the blog. As always, thanks for reading!

(Clothes and Accessories: Jacket – Zara, Top – COS, Jeans – Gap, Sandals – Dolce Vita)

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‘What Should I Wear To…?’ Series: Coffee After School Drop Off

It’s that momentous time of the year again – in the next few weeks (give or take a few days), those of us with children of school going age, will see our darlings returning to school. It’s high time really, family and friends have been visited, summer camps have been attended and copious amounts of sugary foods have been consumed. I can almost hear the computers at home begging for relief and I for one have exhausted my ability to answer any more complicated questions about how the universe works or why I can’t leave one sibling on the corner of the road somewhere! (yes that request has been made).

Children going back to school can often present the opportunity to meet new parents and the dilemma of ‘What do I wear to…?’ to meet new people straight after school drop off.  I have always found that in reality my attention on a school morning is almost entirely focused on getting the children ready, leaving little time for me to worry about my styling choices. For those of us who are heading to work straight after, work clothes save the day. However, if you are not working or work from home, the dilemma of what to wear to school drop-off is a very real one! In a busy morning situation, I find that comfort is key and my go to clothes are almost always a pair of jeans and a t-shirt.  Adding a nice pair of flats and a low-key statement piece such as a nice jacket can elevate that simple look to a more polished one.

In this instance, I have added this adorable embroidered linen bomber jacket to my t-shirt and jeans combination. Adding some leather slip-ons that are not sneakers, a cross body bag and a nice pair of sun glasses takes this look from ‘casual’ to ‘I just throw on stuff that happens to all work together’ in my opinion. I hope you like this look and I also hope that you meet some lovely new fellow parents this start of the new school year.

Thank you so much for reading!

(Clothes and Accessories: T-Shirt – Uniqlo, Jeans – Gap, Jacket – H&M, Shoes – J slides, Cross-body Bag – Modalu, Ring – Ishariya, Sun Glasses – Dior)

 

The Great White Shirt: A Classic In My Wardrobe

Happy Friday everyone – it is going to be a quick one today. I can’t resist a beautiful white shirt! While many garments are labeled classic, a good-looking white shirt definitely qualifies for the tile in my opinion. A white shirt is a great partner to a pair of jeans and adding a few choice accessories can result in a sophisticated yet casual look.

I am a big fan of the origami folds on on this shirt  – despite the fact that I can never get it to fold the same way every time I iron it!  The organza panel on the side is a great addition and adds a bit of oomph to the overall proposition. A bling bracelet and sandals are an effective way to elevate this outfit from meek to chic! I love the proportions of this bag and the seemingly odd colour seems to go with everything.

I am traveling and looking forward to blogging from California and Mexico next week. Do check back for some great summer fashion!

Thanks for reading and have a fabulous weekend.

(Clothes and Accessories: Shirt – COS, Jeans – Zara, Sandals – Zara, Handbag – Bottega Veneta, Bracelet – Banana Republic)