Mis aventuras españolas: Madrid – Don’t say the ‘B’ word

08/2017

After briskly getting into the car, just off Gran Via – one of the busiest streets in town, famously known as ‘the street that never sleeps’ – we immediately stepped into what felt like an interrogation. Our destination? The capital city of España. Our interrogator? A middle aged Spanish taxi driver with a pair of the thick framed glasses pushed to the bridge of his nose and a brown stain on the sleeve of his white shirt, perhaps evidence of one too many cups of coffee. He was very curious to know where we had come from, and after discovering that we were, dare I say it, British, it set him off ranting about an issue that has been circulating our news for over a year and not being dramatic but quite possibly the worst thing that has happened to British Politics. Yes, you guessed it, Boris Johnson. Just kidding – although debatable. It was the action of the UK leaving the European Union, apparently its widely known as Brexit?!

Let’s just say that this taxi driver was not afraid to speak his mind, perhaps not realising that he was still in fact sitting in a car with 4 Brits who didn’t particularly enjoy being insulted. Yes, we were left slightly disorientated and almost afraid to say the wrong thing,  however we quickly assured him that we were avid remainers, which was much to his delight. He happily waved us off with a mental list of the top 5 Tapas Bars in town:
(((in no particular order)))

  1. Lateral
  2. Bodega de la Ardosa (one of the oldest in Madrid)
  3. Cervecería Cervantes

Okay, top 3 because I cannot remember the other two but all in all, it was an impressionable taxi ride!

 

Mis aventuras españolas : Barcelona

La Sagrada Família. La barrio gótico. Antoni Gaudí. Estos son los lugares que conforman Barcelona. Es una cuidad que he visitado unas pocas veces antes, pero quería más lejos de edificios importantes. Aquí es lo que he encontrado.

No sabía que en Barcelona existe una mezcla de personas con tan diversidad! Cuando estábamos caminando por los calles, descubrí que se hablaban tantos idiomas diferentes como aleman, árabe y ruso. Quizás, lo más sorprendente era hindi! Nunca supe que había una población tan grande de indios que vivían en Barcelona. Más tarde me di cuenta que estaban tratando de ganarse la vida, trabajando como taxistas y vendiendo recuerdos en las calles.
Comprensiblemente, Barcelona es un lugar más conocido en todo el mundo por su turismo, pero incluso mirando más allá de los turistas, todavía había una comunidad llena de diferentes culturas.

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A mi me gusta esta idea porque como un lingüista, estoy fascinando por cómo funcionan los idiomas y cómo los comparo entre sí. La gente se dice que la mejor manera de aprender un idioma no es solo por leer un libro, pero ir el país y sumergirse en el camino de la vida. Pienso que mi español ha mejorado mucho de este viaje porque ninguno de mis amigas pudieron hablar español y por eso, tuve que hablar con los taxistas, camareros y incluso la señora que estaba alquilando su apartamento a nosotros hablaba inglés muy roto. Me pareció que esto me ayudó mucho y me volví mucho más confiado.

Absolutamente, Barcelona es un destino donde puedes tener una experiencia diferente cada vez que la vistas. Si estas disfrutando una copa de sangría junto a la playa o explorado las maravillas de Palau Güell, hay la combinación perfecta de turismo, entretenimiento y relajación.

Este video da una instantánea de Barcelona a través de mis ojos!

 

 

 

 

T-SHIRT WEATHER

Summer is just around the corner, so I’ve decided to highlight the key trends and must haves for this season.
( I’ve annotated each picture to identify where it’s from. )

// Brigitte Bardot //
There are many tops and dresses that completely expose both shoulders, commonly referred to as “cold shoulder” or “bardot”. This trend has become increasingly popular, especially over the past few months, however was originally popularised by the infamous Brigitte Bardot and subsequently named after her.

// Frayed Denim //
The newest style that is coming through for denim, is a frayed hem. It’s an edgy, must have for your summer wardrobe!

// Pretty in Pink //

Blush Pink is definitely one of my favourite colours for this season. It is simply elegant and  although may be considered infantile, it can be very sophisticated. The spectrum of pink varies slightly, with salmon undertones and hints of coral.

// Camouflage //
Throwback to 2k13! Yes, its true, camouflage is very in for this season, so pull out some old bits from your wardrobe and re-style them. And it’s not simply the original army-like colours, it’s been modernised so a slight variation of colours are coming through.

// Stripes for Days //
Stripes are everywhere, in different colours, sizes and directions. Be sure to fit them into your summer shop!

// The Slip Dress //
This style of dress has recently become popular amongst the designers, however it is quite early days. In my opinion, this trend will reach its peak later in the year and possibly into next year.
It may seem slightly risqué however, apparently wearing your “under”-garments “over” is a thing! This style although deemed promiscuous can in fact be extremely classy and simply sexy.

// Little Red Dress //
The title speaks for itself. These dresses are easy to throw on and can be worn with a light wash denim jacket if you want to dress them down. For a more formal look, a pair of delicate nude heels would do the trick.

/// FAVOURITE BRANDS OF THE SEASON ///

  1. Honey Punch
  2. Kiss The Sky
  3. Band of Gypsies
  4. UNIF
  5. Reclaimed Vintage

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How I’d Love To Go To Paris Again…

PARIS. Never did I think, at such a young age, that I would have the privilege of fulfilling one of my most desired dreams. Ever since I was little girl, Paris has always been a city that I have wanted to visit. I don’t know where the interest came from, but something about it has always had me gripped.

Now, I had always assumed that I would travel to Paris after I had left home. Perhaps with a future friend, or partner, it had always seemed like something “Adult Jasmine” would experience. However, I did forget that I had the most extraordinary mother in the world who, of course, decided to surprise me and take me on my 16th birthday. The moment I found out, I was lost for words. Although, it was a moment that allowed me to realise how fortunate I was. It made me truly appreciate how wonderful my parents actually were and I could not express how grateful I was. Initially, I couldn’t even say ‘thank you’ because I burst into (happy) tears, which then caused my mum start. Yes, it was an emotional time for everyone however after I overcame my emotions, the only thought running through my head was, “What am I going to wear?!”

My mother and I had actually been shopping the weekend before, so I had some new, unworn pieces in my wardrobe. But this was more than just some weekend away, it was Paris! I could only take the best of the best.

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Book: Anthropologie // Bag: Prada

1) Monsieur Bleu (20 Avenue de New York, 75116 Paris, France)
This was a perfect lunch place, to enjoy a light, healthy meal from which you could see the Eiffel Tower. One side of the restaurant was almost entirely made from windows, therefore it seemed quite open and the sun was able to easily get in.

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Book: Anthropologie // Bag: Prada

I wanted to be cool but comfortable on the first day, especially if we were flying that morning. I decided to tie the top so that it met the edge of the skirt, simply making it my own. The trainers were definitely a good idea, considering it was our first day and I was adamant to visit all of the “touristy” sites.

2) Yeeels (24 Avenue George V, 75008 Paris, France)
Yes, with all three e’s. This was a very cool, trendy place for dinner. The service was great, food was delicious and all in all we had a wonderful night. It’s only been open for about a year therefore it wasn’t very well known amongst our friends and family but it is definitely the place to be on a Friday night.

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Book: Anthropologie // Bag: Prada

Our trip to The Louvre was delightful. I have always been one to admire art and this was definitely on my bucket list. For me, art has always fascinated me because I have never been an artist myself, and to watch others create such masterpieces is incomprehensible. I am stunned by the way in which it is created.

3) Costes (239-241 Rue Saint Honoré, 75001, Paris, France)
The interior design of this restaurant was very traditional and classic, however the courtyard in the centre modernised the place and created a peaceful ambience.

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4) Matignon (3 Avenue Matignon, 75008 Paris, France)
What a beautiful way to spend our last evening. The atmosphere was incredible, they had a DJ entertaining the guests and the staff were especially accommodating, considering we changed our table three times (oops). My mother had told them we were here to celebrate my birthday and they did not let it slip. Whilst waiting for our desserts to arrive, about 10 waiters and waitresses surrounded our table with sparklers and confetti, cheering and congratulating me on my special day. It was a wondrous experience.

 Ultimately, Paris was indeed a fascinating city filled with astounding architecture, spectacular restaurants and beautiful shopping areas. I had forgotten how elegant the French language was, as a Spanish and German student, I couldn’t understand a single word. In fact, this trip to Paris inspired me to learn French, and hopefully become fluent one day. This was an extremely difficult challenge to face but I wanted to pass with flying colours.

In the words of Leonardo da Vinci, “It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.”

AW 15 Look-Book

I did a small shopping spree in Topshop and Urban Outfitters near the end of last year. What I like about Topshop, is that they cater for such a spectrum of styles and looks. It allows a variation of customers to be interested. Even though it may be classified as your standard, everyday clothing store, you can still find pieces that are unique. Personally, I love ‘Band of Gypsies’ and ‘Tee and Cake’ which are boutiques that supply to Topshop and they usually have a more ‘individual’ selection. I managed to find some basics that I could use under more elaborate pieces and a couple of statements.
Recently, Urban Outiftters has also sparked my interest. I am not sure if its the stacks of vinyls displayed across the shelves or the wonderfully unique gift selection but something has enticed me. It is a store that has further broadened my perspective on what is deemed “fashionable”. I feel now, that has become such a loose term in this industry because people are increasingly becoming more comfortable in expressing their own views and ideas about what we should be wearing. It’s exciting. It’s refreshing. Fashion should spark people’s imagination.
Maroon. This was definitely a favourite colour of mine for this season. It brings a slight flare to the mundane colours associated with winter such as navy and black however it holds a rightful place to appear sparsely in summer collections also. It suits such a variety of skin tones and has never had a specific association with a particular gender.
I’d also like to highlight that you don’t need millions to be fashionable. It doesn’t matter whether you are shopping in Primark or Dolce & Gabbana, if you wear your style with confidence, it will look good. You can re-wear the same pair of Topshop ripped jeans because they’re comfy and just wear a different top. You also don’t need an entirely different outfit for every occasion. You can swap in jeans, skirts, turtlenecks and stilettos. By simply changing a top, you have a completely different look.
Fashion is easily accessible, you just need to know where to look.

Here, I have attached a few images of outfits that I created for summer and autumn last year. I varied the styles and intentions of every outfit.

 [A friend of mine, Grace Bodha, helped with the modelling of these shots.]

About

Blonde Coconut stands as a blog which exists to inspire others into taking spontaneous fashion choices. I further aim to share my experiences with the world, including comments about my travels to varying destinations.
Estoy particularmente interesado en España y su cultura, y actualmente estoy aprendiendo español con el objetivo de estudiándolo en la universidad. Una tema que es tan fascinante para mi, es ‘la herencia árabe en España’ y por lo tanto quiero estudiar español y árabe. Árabe es una lengua que está volviendo más importante en el mundo de los negocios y pienso que aprender este lengua es un gran avance en nuestra sociedad.