Friday, 26 August 2016

The brand that has become my fashion family

Wearing a Marina Rinaldi Coat
Just about every fashion obsession I have, at present, I can trace back to a few select moments of drooling over my mother's wardrobe. She had a style that I've spent 30 years trying to live up to and replicate. She could look like a cast member from Urban Cowboy one day and Kim Basinger the next, and she did it with sophistication and confidence... the key, really, to making any ensemble complete. I'll never forget one item in particular, a mid-length shearling coat. It was chocolate brown with a buttery off-white lining. I would wrap myself up in this coat and dream of inheriting it. One afternoon, while running my cheek along the furry lining, my mother turned to me and said, "you know that coat comes from Italy, from one of the my favorite brands, so be careful!" That was the first time my mom introduced me to Marina Rinaldi.

At the time, the only thing I understood about this brand was that it was magical. Truly, Marina Rinaldi was a brand that seemed to create the most luxurious pieces that hung from my mom's closet walls. Sumptuous silk shirts, long wide leg wool trousers and cuddly cashmere coats were all on display with the Marina Rinaldi label. I had the dream, as a teenager, of being able to shop Marina Rinaldi with my mom in Italy, one day in the future. A determined fashion demon was born.

Now, over the past seven years, I have met with more fashion brands than I have time to mention. I've spoken endlessly about design, celebrity endorsements, store openings and more. I've always done so with a passion for what I do that I have thought was unparalleled. I've done so with an excitement about the future. But, never before have I done so with an emotional edge. In Marina Rinaldi, I felt excited for the future, excited for what they stand for in fashion and absolutely gobsmacked by the drive they have to bring luxury to every woman of every size. Something inside me has always been sparked by this brand, and it's about time it came into action.

You see Marina Rinaldi isn't just a luxury label, it's a luxury label that believes all women, no matter their size, should be a part of the fashion world. All too often women are led to believe, by 99.9% of fashion brands out there, that the only size that works is that which exists in the smallest digits possible. In a nutshell, if you aren't small enough to fit into the sizing, you aren't allowed to play the style game. Well Marina Rinaldi couldn't be more different. They cover all sizes. They are worn by all women. In fact, I'm pretty sure their client list, which they do not shout about, would surprise you.

In 1981, Marina Rinaldi was one of first brands to advertise the concept of dressing a "plus size" woman. In 1985, they opened their first store in Paris, following the opening of seven stores in Italy the year before. Over the history of the company, the brand has seen the likes of India Hicks, Tatjana Patitz, Carre Otis, Crystal Renn, Kate Dillon, Patricia Arquette and Alessandra Garcia model in their campaigns, and they've worked with legendary fashion photographs such as Peter Lindbergh, Craig McDean, Patrick Demarchelier, Bruce Weber, Max Vadukul and Ellen Von Unwerth to capture the women. This history doesn't get much more epic. 

Yet, even through all of this incredible fashion history and work towards opening the doors of fashion to a wider audience, I still feel as if they are one of the best kept secrets in fashion. This isn't to say they aren't a recognizable brand. It's more that this is truly a fashion family. Once you become a purchaser with Marina Rinaldi, you are let into an experience that truly is unrivaled. You are looked after, invited in for tea and given a treatment that is what the luxury buying experience should always be but so rarely is in the world of fashion. The experience of shopping is superb, but of course it's all about the actual garment you are buying into, right? 

The Marina Rinaldi team has worked hard to create flattering cuts for all sizes using only the most luxurious original designs and fabrics, throughout their history. And after visiting their atelier in Italy, I can say that this is done with an elegance in work that is reflected in the garment you see hanging in store. Each and every member of the team takes their job very seriously. They work diligently to supply pieces that woman the world over will worship for years to come. Their designers work tirelessly to bring the latest trends to life, while also providing classic cuts and timeless shapes that will last, without fail, for generations to come. I'm living proof of that. Mom, I still have my eye on that shearling coat!
For two days, in July, I was able to ask every question, drool over ever garment, shake the hand of every designer and traverse the city that has been home to the Marina Rinaldi brand for over three decades. I visited the beauty that is Reggio Emilia, Italy. In the beginning, as I met the creative minds behind a brand that has given life to so many fashion dreams, the smile on my face made my cheeks hurt. At the end, those same cheeks were stained with tears. This is perhaps the truest line I have ever written on the blog and it goes a little something like this: In Reggio Emilia, I met my fashion family - a family that was born the same year that I was. Not a coincidence, in my opinion.

That's why I am proud to announce my ambassador role with the brand moving forward. You'll be seeing a lot more Marina Rinaldi on FFG, in style posts (which I absolutely cannot wait to share... wait until you get a closer look at some of these autumn winter beauties), Outfit du Jours and more. This is all in the hopes that I can further highlight a brand that has my full support, not only for its beautiful design but for the way in which this brand has the ability to make every woman, of every shape and size, feel beautiful. I don't think I've ever been able to say that before. And I couldn't feel prouder to say it today. Watch this space. 

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Style Update: Fall Fringe

The perfect fringe bag
The perfect fringe bag
Oh wait, did you think fringe was over? Think again, ladies and gents. This is the trend that keeps on giving, so keep the fly aways at the ready for the season ahead. Fringe is in. And if you don't believe me, just take a look at the autumn winter offering hitting stores now. My current obsession? The latest accessory to find a home in my bag collection.

You guessed it, it's got "fringe fanatic" written all over it and it's the perfect clutch to take me from late summer right through until the winter months. Oh, who am I kidding? I'll be handing this classic piece down to the next generation along with a Chanel tweed jacket and a pair of killer Manolos. Yes, I do actually have a box for such treasures. But, this beauty deserves a twirl or two around town before it goes away for safe keeping. This weekend it was worn out with gingham and camo. I call this my preppy meets punk ensemble. I'm mixing my Southern roots with my vintage pride. 

So, about getting the look. Well, of course I'm waxing lyrical here about the Saint Laurent monogram fringe bag I found on Farfetch. The sunglasses are Quay Australia. The gingham dress is ASOS. And that camo jacket is vintage. You can find one in just about any charity shop these days. Throw on a diamond pendant and you're good to go with an up to date classic that will work with any ensemble. 

The perfect fringe bag
The perfect fringe bag
The perfect fringe bag

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Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Rio Ready Nails from Elegant Touch


Elegant Touch have a couple o' limited edition nails to make even the stubbiest and ugly looking hands (like my own) look somewhat presentable. To celebrate all things Rio Olympics Elegant Touch have a v. festive, colourful and crazy duo of nails out this summer. Brightly coloured and in your face prints they sum up the energy of Rio really well. Well as well as a pair of nails actually can.

The blue and tropical print of the Rio Ready ones reminds me of a dress that I had a couple of summers ago from Zara. It's legit the same concept and colours with the clash of prints... you could say Elegant Touch ripped off Zara for a change. None the less the two go together really well considering they are supposed to be clashing prints. 

Other others are not quite to my taste as a set of nails because they are super duper print heavy. However as an accent nail complimenting a bright plain set of nails it'd be pretty sassy.

The nails themselves are almond shape which isn't my personal favourite shape for nails as I prefer a more shorter square look. However that can be achieved with a bit of effort and a nail file. I adore Elegant Touch nails as they are super thin and  not heavy or hard to wear. As someone who loves false nails they are pretty much faultless. 10/10.

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Outfit du Jour: Looking forward to fall

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Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Flow Festival

CELINE shoes

CHLOE sunglasses

Flow Festival, or as we know it - the sweet Finnish festival that can’t be missed, the last stretch of our Nordic summer. The epic and infamous three day extravaganza took place last weekend, and this year I had the pleasure of experiencing it with Zalando. The online store has been big on the festival scene this season. Big enough to host their very own scene in the form of their very own Zalando Factory.

On deliberating what to wear, it occurred to me that hardly anything would look out of place at this city festival. Even a white shirt and jeans would work, so that’s what I did. A festival version of course - crocket replaced crispy cotton, with again relying on a oversized sleeve. With the opportunity of some flower embroidery on my jeans, how could I not? This is coming from someone that owns both a designer and a high-street version, needless to say, you better have some sticker-type patches on your jeans this year. The selection that we are being offered is already too big to choose from, so channel your inner 70’s/80’s kid before we get all serious and with the fall wardrobe.  

On day two I brought a little bit of darkness with some dramatic floor length florals, that seems to still be my favourite festival get up. As fun as a jumpsuit but way more practical, a factor that is underrated at festivals…

But so another successful Flow festival is over. Satisfied over the gourmet food that once again outdid itself - This weekend is a foodies day dream. You can literally have a wheatgrass shot in between your every cider, just the fact of knowing this already reduces the hangover. Happy about the amazing memories I made with my loved ones, some while dancing to Sia’s beautiful performance, some while tasting my way though the drink stands - no wheatgrass shots in sight.

See you next year sweet Flow Festival.

Photos by Janita Autio
In collaboration with Zalando

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Daydreaming again!

Darlings! SIGH. I am such a daydreamer - procrastination is a disease you know!
I must pull up my Chanel socks and do something useful...

bunny kisses
Fifi Lapin

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Style Update: The perfect little white dress

If we're talking addictions, I have a big one when it comes to little white dresses. They are the perfect summer style solution when you're in a hurry, need to throw something on and be out the door looking stylish and ready for warm weather in a jiffy. 

Last month I came across one of my favorite little white dresses in H&M... of all places! This breezy number was screaming my name from the window. I ran in and bought two. I told you I had a problem. It fits perfectly, has great balloon sleeves that are all the rage this season and it's incredibly comfortable for travel. Enough said!

Shop the Look:

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Monday, 22 August 2016

11 reasons Waiting on Martha is the best place ever for gift buying...

Shop Waiting on Martha
If you've been following blogs for a while, you'll be very familiar with the American blog that is Waiting on Martha. I am, in fact, obsessed. So when the blogging superstar opened her online shop - Shop Waiting on Martha- I nearly lost all ability to scroll. 

This is one of the best places online for gift shopping. Seriously, every wedding, birthday or moving home present I've bought over the past few months has been from this little lovely. So, I thought it was time to share my online shopping secret. You'll find everything from clever matchboxes to stationary that's truly drool worthy. Here are my 11 favorites on the site right now. Keep this page bookmarked. It's a lifesaver of epic proportions.

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