Punting on the Cam

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One sunny Bank Holiday weekend last month, my friends Liv and Joe were visiting Cambridge for a spring staycation. Of course, I did what any self-respecting Cambridge-resident would do: rounded up my favourite Cambridge girl Caroline and her boyfriend, Oscar, and insisted on a picnic and an afternoon of punting on the river to kick off the summer.

I cycled across town to meet the gang at St John’s, where we all traipsed through the Bridge of Sighs towards the river to borrow a punt from Caroline’s college. We all piled in, the bottles of champagne outnumber the crew, and set off on the Cam with dashing Oscar and his master punting skills at the helm.

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The sun was shining gloriously, so the afternoon melted into dusk as we floated up and down the river more times than I could count until it was time for dinner. It is quite simply the best way to see all the grand colleges along the Backs, and the three of us recounted all the marvellous historical tales we could think of as we passed each college, and made up our own stories when we couldn’t think of anything better.

It wouldn’t be a Cambridge summer without at least a few adventures by the river, and there’s no place I’d rather be on a sunny Sunday afternoon than messing about on boats with friends.

Summertime in Cambridge, you’re alright.

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Wearing: Saint James for J.Crew top // ASOS jeans // Salvatore Ferragamo pumps via Monnier Freres // Ralph Lauren blazer // Chanel bag // Tom Ford sunglasses // Chanel brooches // Michael Kors watch // J.Crew necklace.
Beauty: Chanel ‘L’Eclatante’ lipstick // NARS ‘Gaiety’ blush // Deborah Lippmann ‘Naked’ nailpolish

What are your very favourite adventures to kick off summer? I’d love to hear your traditions, old and new!

Love, Miss B xx

Photos of by Joe Galvin

7 Things for the Weekend

A Girl, A Style _ What's In My Chanel BagPictured (clockwise from top): Chanel bag // Tom Ford sunglasses c/- Vision Direct // Luxe Guide to Paris // J.Crew crystal earrings // YSL Touche Eclat // Fresh ‘Sugar’ tinted lip balm // Diptyque Eau de Sens perfume // Chanel brooch // Chanel ‘L’Eclatante’ lipstick.

Bonjour! We’re just back from a week in Paris where we had the most wonderful time. Even though it rained solidly for four out of our six days there (meaning we had to cancel our planned day trips to Versailles and Giverny), it was still pretty much perfect. We went to all our favourite places for tea and desert (and then walked and walked all over the city to work it off), spent hours in galleries, and lazed in the beautiful gardens when the weather was kind.

I’m not even going to bother packing away my suitcase, because in another week we’re off to Italy! My fiancé has a conference in Bologna, so I’ve invited myself along to explore the nearby cities whilst he’s in lectures (I’m thinking of day tripping to Florence and Verona), with a few days together in Venice at the end. Please send all your Italian recommendations my way!

1. If you haven’t already, do a new-season wardrobe stocktake: pack away all your out of season clothes, go through all your current-season items to be sure they definitely still deserve a place in your closet (my qualifying criteria: it must be a) loved, b) worn often, c) flattering, d) still in good repair), take any clothes or shoes that need refreshing to the drycleaner/cobbler, and replace any worn-out or missing essentials.

2. I recently bought this dress (looks just like Chanel, but at a fraction of the price) to wear in Paris, but it was so rainy it sat in my suitcase unworn. Thankfully it will look just as cute in Italy next week as it will for brunch dates and bike rides in London.

3. I love anything orange blossom scented, and this new Diptyque perfume is the perfect iteration for summer. Crisp and fresh (and not at all sickly), it is perfect for long summer days (or just those days that could use a little more sunshine).

4. J.Crew jewels are my weakness, and these perfect crystal earrings (that go with literally every outfit I own) and dahlia necklace (full disclosure: I also bought the matching bracelet) might be my favourite jewellery acquisitions so far this year.

5. Coupled-up? 13 questions to ask your significant other before getting married, via the New York Times (I would also add: “Have you ever contemplated voting for Donald Trump?” to that list…)

6. I would quite happily own everything Kate Spade ever made but, for the sake of being a responsible adult, usually practice restraint. But when I bought these salt + pepper shakers as a hostess gift for a friend last week, they were so especially cute I ended up getting another set for myself (and hurray for the fact that Kate Spade homewares are now stocked in the UK at John Lewis!)

7. Because it is seemingly raining everywhere in the world right now (what summer?), make the most of the mini-autumn and indulge in all your favourite indoor pursuits. Perhaps a romantic date at a cosy little bistro, a visit to a new exhibition, or a low-fi date at home with new books and old movies (I’m just about to dive into this one, in attempt to deal with my sense of always feeling overwhelmed).

P.S. Don’t forget you can follow me over on InstagramTwitterPinterest and Facebook for daily updates.

As always, please do let me know what you’re currently buying, doing or enjoying in the comments below (I always love reading your favourites).  Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Love, Miss B xx

Off to Paris!

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Bonjour mes amis! My fiancé and I are off to Paris for 5 nights this weekend and I couldn’t be more excited!

We’ll be staying at the beautiful Hotel Emile in Le Marais (my favourite district) and – a huge novelty for two perpetual over-schedulers – we have absolutely no plans. We’re just going to wander our favourite neighbourhoods, visit a few galleries, loiter in tiny bookstores, sit at pavement cafes on the Left Bank, eat too many desserts, have picnics in the park, and take a daytrip out to Versailles.

I’d love to know your tips and suggestions for the best new places to go, or your favourite things to do!

Love, Miss B xx

 

Weekend Stripes

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It finally feels like Spring here in England, and I couldn’t be more grateful. In between the weekly rain showers, it’s at last warm enough to throw off the coats, pack away the winter layers and go bare-legged.

I’ve been celebrating the new season by breaking out of my winter hibernation; picnics with friends by the river, Saturday brunch dates with my love, buying bunches of spring flowers for the home, and stocking up on a few new buys befitting the warmer weather.

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Given the fact I’d spent the past five months wrapped in layers of cashmere, I’d practically forgotten how to dress for those in-between months of spring. So, as is usually the case when I don’t know what else to wear, breton stripes to the rescue.

I bought this J.Crew dress the other week (I liked it so much I bought the top version as well) and it’s just right for running around town on weekends. I’ve so far teamed it with heels and a trench coat for casual no-meeting days in the office, or white sneakers and a denim jacket for weekend errands and shopping trips with friends. It’s the kind of easy throw-it-on-and-you’re-done piece that gets the most mileage in my wardrobe, and the dramatic sleeves do all the work for you (and so requires little more than some excellent earnings and sunglasses to look ‘done’).

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Wearing: J.Crew dress (also available in a top version + inexpensive alternative here) // J. Crew denim jacket (inexpensive alternative here) // Mulberry heels (old, but similar style here) // Celine sunglasses // J.Crew navy + clear necklaces // BaubleBar earrings (similar style here).
Beauty: Chanel ‘L’Eclatante’ lipstick // NARS ‘Impassioned’ blush // Deborah Lippmann ‘Naked’ nail polish.

Love, Miss B xx

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Photos by Beth Morton