A New Year’s Love Story

A Girl, A Style _ Ringing in the Year.JPG

Hello darlings, and a very belated happy new year to you all! Apologies for the inadvertent blogging hiatus this year; my day job has been rather frenetic of late, and I confess I’m not always excellent at balancing these two worlds of mine. Busy though it has been, I have to say: 2015 has been rather wonderful thus far!

For now, I’ll start with the most significant news: as those of you who follow me on Instagram may have seen, I got engaged on New Year’s Eve! The Clever Boyfriend and I met on that same night 10 years ago; by a series of coincidences we had ended up at the same cheesy bar and, as the cliche goes, our eyes met across the room. One chance encounter and a midnight New Year’s Eve kiss later, we started dating; frequenting tiny Italian cafes and galleries across the city as we fell head over heels for each other. Since then we spent years separated by oceans (he studying a Masters in Tokyo, me in Australia), moved half way across the world together, and made a home together in Cambridge. And then on New Year’s Eve, while celebrating at home (with our own tiny, but fabulously sparkly soiree with just a few of our favourite people), he asked that question. It was the perfect way to celebrate a decade of love and togetherness.

A Girl, A Style _ New Year's EngagementA Girl, A Style _ A New Year's Engagement

Being the Clever Boyfriend that he is, he knows me well enough to know that I would want to choose my own ring (he knows how much jewellery means to me, but also how particular I am about what I like). So he proposed with a candy lollipop ring (truly!) with the intention that we would choose one together and, in the meantime, I’ve been wearing a rather spectacular Lulu Frost stand-in.

This weekend, we at last started the hunt for the ring. As any good engagement ring searches go, we started at Tiffany & Co. on Old Bond Street where I fell in love with the sparkliest diamonds of them all (with the price tags to match…) and had my Audrey moment, and then it was on to Cartier, De Beers and the jewellers along Hatton Gardens (with a stop at Laduree on the way to refuel on tea and French sugar). As we haven’t quite found ‘the one’, I think we’ll opt for a bespoke ring that is uniquely ours (I’ll just have to be patient for a few more months). Stay tuned!

A Girl, A Style _ Ringing in the Year 2.JPG Details (top): Lulu Frost ring + star necklace (sold out, but similar styles available at Net-a-Porter + J.Crew + Shopbop) // BaubleBar double pearl earrings // Lulu Guinness glitter clutch c/- // gold fortune cookie // vintage bracelet (similar style at Shopbop), headband (from my friend Nicolette) and champagne saucers (similar style at BHLDN). Engagement rings (bottom), all Tiffany & Co.

I’d love to hear your love stories! Did you choose your own engagement ring, or do you have any advice for finding the perfect ring? Please do share in the comments below!

Love, Miss B xx

New Year’s Eve

Oh, what a tremendously good year 2011 has been! From darting all over the world (Australia! Moscow! Berlin! New York! Scotland!), the humbling success of this blog, a wonderful summer filled with sunshine and simple pleasures, all kinds of thrilling fashion adventures, to my wonderful friends and loved ones, I feel rich with the joys the past year has brought. I think it’s important to remember and be grateful for the good things life brings, and it makes me smile to look back at all these lovely memories of the past year.

JANUARY

Escaping the Northern Hemisphere winter and seeing in the New Year in my homeland with loved ones, white sandy beaches, rolling vineyards, the sun on my back and as many souvenirs as my suitcase could contain. Afternoon tea and decadent chocolates in warm, sugary havens on gloomy London evenings. Fully embracing the preppy uniform after two years of living in Cambridge. Cosy hibernation indoors with piles of books, good music and pots of tea. Cambridge formals in grand college dining halls straight out of Hogwarts. Wintery weekend escapes to English manor houses.

FEBRUARY

A photo shoot for an exciting magazine feature. Birthday gifts and parties. So many of my fashion dreams coming true at Fashion Week – front rows, backstage, and everywhere in between at all my favourite shows set in the grandest of London locations. Willing the arrival of Spring.

MARCH

Winning my first major blog award as part of Red Magazine’s Red Hot Women ’20 Under 30′ Awards (a huge honour, to say the least!). Packing all my warmest clothes and shiniest belongings to be whisked off to Moscow by Mango for a whirlwind trip that fulfilled so many fantasies. A brief return home to repack my suitcases, and then it was off to Berlin with the Clever Boyfriend for grand architecture, remarkable history, flea market rummaging and cake tourism. Making new Easter traditions.

APRIL

London looking resplendent for the lovely fairytale Royal Wedding. Despite being diagnosed with a rather nasty life-threatening illness (all better now!) which forces me to slow down, the arrival of spring has me wanting to skip through fields, pick wildflowers, eat ice cream and wear nothing but pink. Walks along Southbank and climbing to the top of Primrose Hill for picnics in the sunshine with the most marvellous views of London. My first invite to Chanel HQ and some lovely new additions to my wardrobe.

MAY

Enjoying my enforced relaxation (doctor’s orders) by appreciating life’s simple pleasures: filling my home with fresh flowers from the market every week, bike rides down country lanes, blowing daffodils in the breeze, lying in fields in the sunshine watching fluffy clouds float past, picnics, a box of Laduree macarons and the taste of the first strawberries of the season. Remembering my Mother’s wisdom. A good dose of British pomp and ceremony at Trooping the Colour followed by afternoon tea at a palace. Discovering Cambridge speakeasy cocktail bars. Mulberry merriment. Bows on my toes.

JUNE

Nesting and organising my new home. Trips to the English seaside with dear friends to soak up some sunshine, build sandcastles and collect seashells. Filling my basket with flowers and going for rides on my Pashley. Long, balmy Summer evenings. Punting on the Cam. Sitting on the grass eating mangoes in the sun. Falling a little bit more in love with Cambridge, so lovely in the summertime.

JULY

Enjoying all the loveliness of summer. Playing tourist in London. Avoiding unnecessary purchases by honing my wardrobe and enjoying my beloved Chanel treasures. Sunny Saturdays in Notting Hill – treasure hunting on Portobello Road, buying great armfuls of flowers and long, lazy brunches on Westbourne Grove. Riding vespas and enjoying gorgeous Italian models at a party with Dolce and Gabbana at Net-a-Porter HQ. Outdoor picnics on the banks of the Cam on long summer evenings.

AUGUST

Glorious London weekends – stays in grand hotels, feeding the swans in St James’ Park, waving to the Queen at Buckingham Palace, sitting on striped deckchairs in the sun in Green Park, walks down Piccadilly, window shopping on Bond Street, dinner dates, going to the theatre, and having breakfast at Laduree. Pearls, pastels and the last days of summer in secret Cambridge college gardens. Reading poetry on bridges as students float down the river on punts. Making time to be peaceful and linger in blissful repose.

SEPTEMBER

Picking blackberries from the hedgerows on walks in the country. My Father’s wisdom. Filling days off work with all manner of fun activities. Fashion Week swings around again and the Spring/Summer shows are a thrill to watch – Mulberry goes to the seaside, Christopher Kane goes back to the 90s, Erdem is a vision of Great Gatsby loveliness, Giles is a tour de force in the Royal Courts of Justice, and a sea of champagne awaits after the lovely Burberry show in Kensington Gardens. Buying the glittery shoes of my dreams at Miu Miu.

OCTOBER

Taking off to New York for a glorious two weeks. Picnics in Central Park. Flea Market treasure-hunting, adorable cafes, perfect boutiques & staying with my transatlantic soul sister in Brooklyn. Strolling Soho, walking the High Line and dreaming of living in a brownstone walkup in the West Village. The bright lights of Times Square and Broadway dreams. Golden leaves, prepsters, secret societies and ivy league grandeur on a trip to Yale. Trips to galleries, window-shopping, ladies who lunch and strolling the leafy streets of the Upper East Side. Buying souvenirs and treasures that make me smile. Giving thanks for the things I treasure. Making pumpkin pies to celebrate Halloween and the arrival of autumn. Winning my second major blog award at the Cosmopolitan Blog Awards.

NOVEMBER

Enjoying the joys of autumn with a weekend Staycation in Cambridge. Showing you all what a day in my life looks like. Festive cocktails and dressups with an entire rail of couture gowns at The Outnet. Hopping on a Eurostar and having a long weekend in Paris with a dear friend. Golden light and candy floss pink sunsets over the Seine. Pastries for breakfast, galleries at lunch, and strolling the tiny streets of Montmarte. The Christmas windows at Printemps. Literary cafes, vintage shopping, bookstores and walks along the Left Bank. The Chanel mothership on Rue Cambon. Buying French perfume, boxes of macarons, scented candles, silk blouses, jewels and other lovely Parisian souvenirs.

DECEMBER

Stella McCartney’s Christmas party, complete with the cast of Absolutely Fabulous, a Beatle and a Spice Girl, tables set with gingerbread and sparkly accessories. Hot chocolate and roasting chestnuts. A wintery trip to Scotland. Ice skating beneath Edinburgh Castle and nighttime ferris wheel rides. Ghost walks. The Nutcracker. The most exciting snow day in Cambridge during an unseasonably warm winter. Glittery nails everyday. Carollers at the Palace of Westminster echoing through the hallways as I work. Wintery walks along the Thames. The Christmas lights in London. The smell of gingerbread men and Ralph Lauren holiday candles filling my house. Christmas cheer with loved ones. Dressing up for the theatre. Ringing in the new year with a tea party, cocktails and lots of glitter.

Finally, to every single person who visits here each week, leaves lovely comments and tweets, sends me touching emails, and generally is so supportive of my little passion project that is A Girl, A Style, I simply cannot thank you enough for all your support. You make me smile every single day!

So whoever and wherever you are, I wish you a healthy, happy, sparkly and joyous New Year. Here’s to a wonderful 2012!

Love, Miss B xx