Thursday, July 30, 2009

Barcelona Bound

When I saw Woody Allen's indie film, Vicky Cristina Barcelona last year I fell in love with the city, Gaudi's architecture, and all of Penelope Cruz's outfits in the movie. Little did I know that I'd have the opportunity to visit a year later. So, I write this is complete anxiousness before our 2:30 am departure (.. it's going to be a long day!). I'm SO anxious to explore the beach, shop Las Ramblas, and try out some flamenco dancing!

I'm using Penelope Cruz's character as my sartorial inspiration for packing for the weekend, even the messy hair since I will be sans blow dryer.

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I hope to share more stories and images from my trip when I return! If you're just finding my blog or haven't read it in a while, make sure to catch up on my last 4 weeks of studying abroad!

xoxo, lauren

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Ooh La La.. The Bra!

As part of my study abroad program, I had write a 15 page paper reasearching a design.. I chose bras. I can safely say I know about everything I would ever want to know about them after dozens of hours slaving away in the comptuer lab! They don't seem like such a novel concept now, but a hundred years ago, women were suffering as they were squeezed into overly tiny corsets. I'm not saying that we don't ever try and change our appearance in modern times, but, thank god corsets are just for fun now!

After looking up so many images of the history of bras, I've been loving anything lingerie inspired lately! It makes me want to go out and buy a super feminine lacy style! There's something quite empowering about wearing pretty underwear, even if no one else sees it.

Imagine my suprise when we went to London's Fashion and Textile Museum (started by Zandra Rhodes) today and there was an exhibit featuring what else, bras and their history! It was quite a beautiful collection and the displays set the mood perfectly.

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pretty patterned undies of the past & present

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i love all the ruffles and rosettes!

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so cheeky, literally!

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underwear as outerwear in 1960's playsuits

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playing peek-a-boo in the adorable displays!

I have exactly a week left in Europe.. I can hardly believe it! I'm leaving for Barcelona this weekend and have a packed schedule ahead of me.. including a visit to see a certain famous shoe designer, but more on that later!

xoxo, lauren

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Roman Holiday

I've always been in love with the movie Roman Holiday; I think every girl who watches it dreams of being swept away on an Italian adventure on a vespa scooter (while impeccably dressed in ballet flats). Imagine my surprise when right outside of our adorable bed and breakfast I saw this spraypainted onto the wall..

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I knew it was a sign of a Dolce Vita weekend adventure.

Our first day we took a bus around seeing all the sights. We made a wish at Trevi fountain, scaled steps of monuments overlooking the city, and ate the city's best gelato. I'm in awe of all the history that surrounds Rome. It gives you an adventurous feeling when you're in the city; thinking about all of the people who have lived in the city, from the gladiators in the colliseum to Roman women in one shoulder gowns. Perhaps that's why they say "When in Rome.."

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the enchanting Trevi Fountain

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tossing a coin in to ensure a return trip to Roma!

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after a hike up hundreds of marble steps we were rewarded with this view..

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more ancient ruins!

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so amazing to stand next to something so ancient!

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I've wanted to see the Colliseum for so long!

There's something magical about Rome, and though I didn't get my Audrey Hepburn-esque romance, I still fell in love.. with the city!

xoxo, lauren

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Graffiti Art in Brick Lane

Tonight my flatmates and I ventured to the Brick Lane area of London. At first it didn't look like much, but then.. we got to the graffiti; the reason we took the tube 7 stops away. It was so amazing! We even saw an artist in action. I was so inspired by all the colors and detailed work. We couldn't help but bust out our cameras for an impromptu photo shoot! I love the idea of something so taboo becoming artwork in itself.
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my stylish friends and myself striking a pose for the self-timer
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It was one of the coolest things I've ever seen since I've been here!
xoxo, lauren

Jewelry is a Girl's Best Friend

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Love all of their jewelry, wish I could make it to the trunk show to see them sparkle in person. If you're in Los Angeles you should make an appearance at Vionnet Boutique, as for the rest of us.. thank god for online shopping!

xoxo, lauren

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I'm Lauren.. and I'm an Archaeology Nerd

Yesterday, I took a day trip to Stonehenge & Bath! As I mentioned before I'm a big archaeology nerd (I've taken 2 elective classes in college), so I've been wanting to see Stonehenge for quite some time! I was very surprised that it was much smaller than I expected in person! The weather was quite dark and mysterious when we went which perfectly set the scene. Bath was quite a picturesque town with lots of Edwardian architecture and of course the ancient Roman natural spring baths there!

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sporting my leather jacket, billabong tee, & blue/black tye dye scarf

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STONEHENGE! <3
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The Roman Baths.. vintage hot tubs? :)
I also saw Hamlet last night, starring Jude Law! It was a fantastic show, very different from Wicked of course. Shakespeare is so hard to perform, so I was impressed with his acting; he was very animated and passionate on stage.. Pretty easy on the eyes too ;)
xoxo, lauren

Monday, July 20, 2009

When in Rome

I was really attracted to this editorial from Cover's June/July 09 Issue, because it looks like it was shot juxtaposed against Roman ruins. I'm a huge history and archaeology buff, so I get pretty giddy over such things. I'm actually going to Rome this weekend during our mini-break from classes. I'm staying in a Bed and Breakfast with my roommate; can't wait to share pictures with you!
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How amazing are the boyfriend shorts, stacked bracelets, smoky eye look??
xoxo, Lauren

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Lovng this Line [Brit Brands]: Missguided

loving this line [brit brands]:missguided
loving this line [brit brands]:missguided by lapetitefashionista on Polyvore.com

I had the pleasure of visiting the Boudoir PR showroom while i've been in London. It was so adorable with its sparkling chandeliers, girly decor & cupcake platter! It was such a fun experience to meet the PR rep there I had been corresponding with and talk fashion and london shopping with her! She showed me all the lines Boudoir represents and I fell in love with Missguided, a british e-tail website.

Everything is super affordable (most pieces under 30 pounds) and trendy.. and they ship internationally as well as within the UK. They get new merchandise on their website several times a week. These were a few of my favorite items currently on the site. I'm loving the layered chains, exposed zippers, sequined blazer, and rosettes!

One of the best parts about studying abroad is being able to discover all these international labels and stores, I'm hoping to continue to bring more of my findings to you!

xoxo, lauren

Friday, July 17, 2009

Style Stalking & The World's Largest Cupcake

It seems like everywhere you go in London you see fabulously dressed people! Sometmies I can't help but whip out my camera and snap a picture of their cute outfits. Another common sight is statuesque model types wearing impossibly high heels, and carrying around their lookbooks to go-sees. It's so exciting to be surrounded by so many people who care as much about fashion as I do!

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a model rocking some louboutins, no big deal.


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Spotted this chic londoner in Covent Garden market

One of my favorite things about fashion magazines in the UK is all the freebies! Most of them come with some sort of gift whether it's a tee, nail polish, sunglasses, or book. It's sort of like a grown up version of cracker jack box!

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My ELLE mag with a Paul & Joe ruffle tank

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The World's largest cupcake, in Covent Garden!

Yesterday, we went to see Wicked in London's West End which was absolutely fantastic! I was so impressed with the vocals and detailed stage sets. Next week we scored tickets to see Jude Law in Hamlet, I'm already planning a cute outfit..

Today, we're making a visit to Harrod's and Selfridges, two iconic British stores. I'll be sure to give an update on my shopping finds!

xoxo, lauren

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

"You can find Inspiration in Everything.. and if you Don't Look Again"- Paul Smith

Today we went to the Design Museum located right by the Tower Bridge. It was one of my favorite museums I've ever visited; very interactive, informative, and a gift shop filled with coffee table books I could spend hours perusing. I took a 20th Century Design class last semester and learned an incredible amount. It was great to see some of the examples I've learned about in person. It's often overlooked by some of the bigger museums in London, but is definitely worth a visit!
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the museum has a bauhaus influenced architecture
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A designer's solution for all the London rain; repelling it w/ static electricity
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the museum had designers from London show on maps how the city has inspired them.
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the first issue of i-D magazine, where the winking cover tradition started
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Paul Smith's solution for improving the city's trash cans
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An interesting quote by designer Javier Mariscal
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The exhibition by Javier was incredibly vibrant and colorful
Everything in the museum was so inspiring, I've definitely learned to appreciate good design and all the creativity that goes into it!
xoxo, lauren

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

the Shoes that Captured my Heart

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I finally was able to do some shopping at Topshop (my trip over the weekend completely overwhelmed me!). I figured out the secret.. we went right when it opened on a weekday.. believe it or not it was still busy! I picked up these heart print sneaks for only 8£ (hearts are m thin); Quite a steal..! I love all of the fantastic displays inside the store, the candy shop within, and the rainbow of jewelry on the bottom floor. If only everything wasn't so darn expensive with the exchange rate! I'm so excited they finally brought one to NYC!

xoxo, lauren

Monday, July 13, 2009

Shopping in London: ROKIT vintage

Our study center is in the heart of all the good shopping in London, thus I've had quite a bit of time to explore all the cute nearby shops! Walking around one day I discovered Rokit, a gem of a vintage store filled clothes filed by decade. I got lost browsing among all the bargains of vintage jewelry, Levi boyfriend shorts, and 80's tiered skirts.
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Everyone's sporting boyfriend shorts abroad! I've already bought myself a pair since I've been here; this whole rack was priced at 10 pounds!
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fun mannequins in the front of the store
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Madonna style tutus and 80's brights
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a very flashdance-esque window display
The store has 3 locations throughout London (one in Camden, Covent Garden, and Brick Lane). They also have an online store! They loan out their vintage duds to magazines like Vogue, Dazed and Confused and i.D. magazine! Definitely take a peek if you're ever in London!
Do any london-ers have any other shops I should check out while I'm here?
xoxo, lauren

Saturday, July 11, 2009

"Do you know which pub Prince Harry goes to?"

I've spent two days in London and I must say, I love this city. It's so nice to finally be settled in somewhere and not live out of a suitcase. We no longer have to cram everything we want to do and see into a couple of days. Our study center is prime real estate and very central to everything!

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feeling quite british in my tartan skirt!

Our first day in London we had Matthew Jeatt, the director of Promostyl's U.K. branch give us a seminar on forecasting for Fall/Winter 2010. My plaid outfit actually fit right into one of his predictions . He forecasted some looks like gothic romance, ivy league, and even rockabilly. I always thing trend forecasters have the most AMAZING jobs. How wonderful would it be to dictate what the next big thing in fashion will be!

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the tower bridge, framed by gloomy london skies

This trip has definitely been an experience to say the least. Traveling with 35 girls can be a bit stressful at times to say the least! It's definitely helped me to realize how lucky I am that I can fairly easily adapt to any situation I'm put in! I've definitely made some amazing friends along the way (who are just as obsessed with fashion as I am!)

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a student sketching the elgin marbles @ the british museum

Today, we visited the British museum. I'm a huge archaeology buff so I really enjoyed it;Especially the exhibits on ancient Egypt and Greece. I also think it's wonderful that the museums are free of charge to the public! It's definitely a good motivation to go get cultured!

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a window display at Topshop on Oxford St.

The shopping here is phenomenal! I've been doing so much, although regretably more window shopping than buying (darn that dollar to pound conversion). I fell in love with everything in Topshop! It was seriously, the most crazy packed store I've ever been to in my life. Everywhere you turned there was bargain hunting girls! I need to go back on a week day.. morning I suppose!

xoxo, lauren

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