On Sober October

By the end of a week in Majorca I was day-drinking with abandon. Beer O’clock crept earlier and earlier. A Cruzcampo at 4pm. Then at 2.30pm. A cava or two with a tapas lunch. A cold beer in the pool under the midday sun.

It was lovely. I didn’t have a single hangover. It was the kind of low-level drinking, spread out over many hours, which did nothing more than leave me slightly zen. Continue reading

Checks Appeal: Autumn Trends

Sometimes I get a real hankering for an item of clothing ever so slightly before it hits peak trendiness. This is not because my true calling is to be a trend forecaster. This is because the pages of fashion magazines and the tiny squares on Instagram have somehow lodged themselves in my tiny, suggestible brain. Much like Andi in the Devil Wears Prada, I end up wearing a blue jumper without necessarily realising why I was drawn to the blue jumper in the first place.

And so it is that this year I’m craving checks. Checks, a belted coat (this is undoubtedly solely because of Megan Markle. The woman gives good coat) and some lace-up boots. When I say checks, I’m not talking the Prince of Wales check of last year. I’m talking dark greens, reds and navys. Look, it’s basically tartan but in the least kilt-y, most classy way possible.

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Paris and Venice This Autumn: What’s on, Where to Stay and How to Travel and Dine in Style

[This article was originally published in Zarwil Magazine (now defunct) in 2014. Although the specific exhibitions are no longer running,  other information remains relevant.]

It would seem that the UK has now been irrevocably plunged into instant autumn.  Whilst the change in season can be beautiful to behold, the period bridging the gap between now and the festive season often seems like one long, bleak three month slog stretching out before us, with the weather getting steadily colder and the days getting shorter.

It therefore goes without saying that autumn is the perfect time for a city break.  What better way to escape the daily grind than to get a bit of culture, see some beautiful architecture and eat (and drink) like a king. Here are a few suggestions for things to see and do in two European cities this autumn, handily collated for your reading pleasure. Continue reading

How Do You Like Them Apples?

The nights are fair drawing in, Bake Off is on our screens and the jumpers are on. Although it seemed as though summer ended when hurricane Bertha came barging her way through it, apparently it’s now officially autumn, announced by the equinox on 23 September.

The changing season, although the beginning of an extended period of cold the likes of which we have forgotten could exist, does bring some beauty. Not only the beauty of black suede boots and faux fur wintry accessories, but also the beauty of nature. Even if we aren’t quite at the mists stage yet- long may this unseasonal sunshine continue- Keats was right about the mellow fruitfulness. The trees in the garden are bent heavy with fruit and the recent glut of cooking and eating apples means I have made more apple based desserts than I can count in the past few weeks.

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