Nicholas Oakwell couture SS13

Well, the latter half of last week seemed to cover all bases from an ethereal fashion show, to the ingestion of large quantities of Mexican food. The former was the Spring Summer 2013 couture show of London-based couturier Nicholas Oakwell, whose production team spent 48 hours transforming the Claridges ballroom into a Japanese-inspired wonderland, with cream wisteria blossoms hanging from trees. I’ve seen many, many fashion shows in that room over the years, but none that were quite as magically transporting as this. Nicholas Oakwell couture SS13

When I wasn’t sitting on cream leather sofas at fashion show, I was curled up in bed to stay warm, writing, emailing and reading. Here I am with Posetta Baddog, reading The Grand Sophy for maybe the hundredth time since my teens. Some books never pale.

Posetta Baddog

The food highlight of last week was this ramekin of Huitlacoche tortilla lasagne at Wahaca, at a girls lunch thrown for twenty or so of her friends by its owner the fabulous cook and author Thomasina Miers. Creamy, cheesy, mushroom-y, delectable.

Huitlacoche tortilla lasagne Wahaca

On Thursday, I was thrilled to receive a present in the mail: a pair of IDA Ivy skinny, high waisted Dreamtime Noir print jeans from my friend Donna Ida’s new jeans line. These are going to look great with a cream silk blouse in the spring.

IDA by Donna Ida

We woke to the long-promised snow on Friday morning and, by the time I had returned from a breakfast meeting at The Delauney, Camden’s side streets looked like this:

Albert Street Camden

On Friday night, I went to supper with friends at their house just under Hampstead Heath, about ten minutes in the car from here, and this is what the road looked like (below) as I arrived at 1930hrs. Fortunately they fed me exquisite Yotam Ottolenghi hot and cold salads, which insulated me for the trip back home in my leaky car.


And look at my poor bike:

Regents park in the snow January London

It’s now really, really cold in London. Like most people, I am paranoid about running up monstrous unexpected heating bills, especially as I can’t split bills, work from home during the day, and Victorian brick houses like this leak heat like a sieve. Fortunately I grew up in a very old house that had no central heating in the bedrooms, and then went off to boarding school, so I am reasonably immune to being cold inside.

I’ve been keeping the heating off at night, and going to bed in a fleecy nightie and layers of Heattech,  burowed under a thick Fogarty duvet and vintage eiderdown, but I’m rather missing Posetta Baddog, who’s been spirited to the country by my sister. She and my mother are now snowed-in in deepest, darkest Northamptonshire, so there’s zero chance of getting my furbaby hot water bottle back before the thaw.

(I’m doubly missing her heat radiating trick, as my hot water bottle gave up the ghost and flooded the bed two nights ago. Nothing worse at 2am in the morning than the realisation that the spreading warmth is actually leaking hot water.)

You May Also Like



I pored over the pictures from Nicholas Oakwell’s couture show with great lust for his beautiful pieces, both grown up and delectably feminine..How amazing it must have been to be there and see them in action…*jealous*


Lovely post from start to finish. The Grand Sophy is one of my favs as well. Especially love the part where she says yes there are more important things than dresses but not , she holds, when one is dressing for dinner!


So excited for the Grand Sophy recommendation, it is new to me but sounds like a gem!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *