Why the Stokke Xplory is the Best Pushchair for London

The Stokke Xplory is So Right for the City

With Ayame now over 9 weeks old, I thought it was a good time for me to post about my experience using the Stokke Xplory pushchair.  I have been using the Xplory since day 1 and I have to say, it has been one of the best decisions I have made so far with baby products.  Pushchairs are such an important and big ticket item to get and I did some extensive research on which one to buy.  There are a lot of discussions and forums on this as well, but for me, the main reason why I decided to go with Stokke is maneuverabilityfunctionality and design (of course!).   So, I wanted to break these components down as to why I think the Xplory is the best pushchair especially for London and anyone living in cities.

Stokke Xplory Pushchair in Pimlico, London Stokke Xplory Pushchair in Pimlico, London

Maneuverability – It’s So Easy to Push the Stokke Around Town!

Living in London, I knew from even before Ayame arrived that maneuverability was going to be one of the key components for the ideal pushchair.  Let’s face it, London roads are horrendous with cobble stones, multiple levels and bumps due to never ending road works and lots and lots of people to contend with.  I knew that whichever pram I chose, I needed one that is easily pushable with good steering control.  I’m also not the strongest of mummies (literally zero arm and upper body muscles!) so I wanted one that is light weight.

The best advice I got was to try out multiple prams at various department stores and baby stores.  I must have tried a dozen different kind of pushchairs and I have to say this is so key!  What I thought was going to be the one for me turned out to be so not right so I’m so glad I tested the top contenders out before I decided on one.   The Stokke Xplory was definitely by far, the easiest pram to push around and maneuver corners.  I think this makes sense given that the Xplory has been specifically designed by the Norwegian brand for city life.  It’s also got 360 two wheel functions that makes swiveling around and maneuvering through millions of people (especially around Oxford Street during New Years sales) and tight spaces incredibly easy.

I am also a really active person and get jittery when I’m cooped up at home for days on end so I wanted a pushchair that would make me want to go out.  And I have to say, the lightness of the Xplory has definitely been a god sent!  I didn’t realise this until Ayame was born, but London is seriously not a step free city with many places unreachable with wheels.  This is especially the case for traveling on the underground.  London tube stations (even the main ones like King’s Cross and Victoria) are not pram friendly with many platforms and exists only accessible by stairs or by an extremely convoluted way via lifts at the other end of the station.  People are usually really nice and help me get up stairs whenever necessary, but there has been times when I have had to try and get pushchair up by myself.  On these occasions, I really felt like the Xplory delivered.  It’s sturdy enough to deal with some banging around but light enough for me to carry its weight up some steps (the trick ladies, is to roll the wheels up the stairs backwards).

 

Stokke Xplory Pushchair in Pimlico, London Stokke Xplory Pushchair in Pimlico, London

Functionality – Connection with my Baby

One key thing to check before you decide on a pram is whether it is compatible as your baby grows.  For example, there is no point getting a Rolls Royce of a pram if it can’t be used once the baby is older.  I think the Xplory is going to be perfect as Ayame grows up.   At the moment, we are using the Xplory Carry Cot as she is still a newborn (this is an additional option so be sure to get this if you are a new parent to be!), but once she is a little older, I am really looking forward to the various seat positions that the Xplory provides.  There are 3 parent facing positions (sleep, rest and active) and 2 forward facing positions (rest and active) which I think provides the necessary variations and adaptability for each unique situation.  I am especially looking forward to raising the stroller seat higher as this should be a great way to connect with Ayame once she’s older.  Even in the Xplory Carry Cot, I really feel like we have great interaction as the cot is perfectly placed to meet my eyesight.  Being able to talk to her whilst we walk around town has been such a great experience for me.

The arrival of Ayame has definitely led to adjustments in our life, but at the same time, I think it is really important that where possible, you keep your lifestyle so that your looking after yourself as well.  A happy mummy means a happy baby!  For us, this has meant that whenever possible, going out for dinners at night and brunching at cafes during the day.   So, we have been taking Ayame in the Xplory to a lot of restaurants (seriously, don’t be afraid to take the pram with you as most restaurants accommodate for pushchairs).  Ayame is quite a social girl and I think she really likes to feel like she is involved in our conversations so I love how the Xplory fits in small spaces and is at table height.  I think the Xplory will be absolutely perfect once we can use the active seats when she is older as well.

 

Stokke Xplory Pushchair in Pimlico, London

Design – It’s so Chic!

The design of the pushchair was definitely going to be a key component for me.   As the main mode of transporting a baby, the pram literally is like an additional body part which goes everywhere with you.  I therefore knew that whichever pram I decided had to have a design which I liked.  The Scandinavian design aesthetic of the Stokke Xplory really resonated with me.  I love how it comes in so many different colours and seat kits (like its winter kit complete with insulating canopy and sheepskin trim) which makes the Xplory so versatile and perfect for ever season and weather.  To fit with the London architecture, I decided to go for the pram with the silver chassis (they come in silver and black) in the grey melange colour.

Stokke as a brand also focuses on designing products which are ergonomic and comfortable.  I really think this is such a n important philosophy for baby products so I can’t endorse their products enough!  I also have Stokke’s high chair so will be talking about this in another post soon!

So, for all of the above reasons, I think the Stokke Xplory is the perfect pushchair for London!

Check out the Stokke Xplory here!

Styling My Looks with Magnum Double Ice Cream

Dare to Go Double

Summer is my favourite season of all in London. As the sun comes out, London transforms into a beautiful city where people seem to be happier and where so many exciting new events seem to be taking place. I also think London becomes even more magical when people are eating ice cream and personally, hearing the tune from the ice cream van always makes my heart skip a beat.

I truly believe there is something mystic about ice creams. No matter how bad or awful a day you are having, ice creams have the ability to lift your spirits up and make your day 100% better. So I was beyond excited to hear about Magnum’s launch of two new flavours for the summer, the Magnum Double range. The exciting new flavours come in Double Raspberry and Double Coconut. I have been trying both ice creams from the Magnum Double range since their launch and have come up with style looks to compliment the two flavours.

Magnum Double Coconut Ice CreamMagnum x Moschino Bag Magnum Double Coconut Ice Cream

Double Raspberry

Magnum’s Double Raspberry is a smooth raspberry ice cream dipped in chocolatey coating, luscious raspberry sauce and Magnum Classic chocolate. It is a divine and indulgent summer treat!

The Double Raspberry is quite punchy with a very luscious raspberry sauce so I think this flavour is perfect for when you are in need of a pick me up to continue through the day. My Double Raspberry look is styled with my favourite boyfriend jeans and a pastel pink blouse, which compliments the colour of the ice cream. I think this look is casual yet chic – perfect for lounging around in your flat or running errands around town.

Magnum Double Raspberry Ice cream Magnum Double Raspberry Ice Cream

Double Coconut

The Double Coconut, which is a velvety smooth coconut ice cream dipped in chocolatey coating and a layer of luscious chocolate sauce, covered in cracking Magnum chocolate. Talk about mouth-watering deliciousness!

I think the Double Coconut has a softer flavour with a very rich, yet smooth coconut ice cream and so my look for this flavour is a girly white lace dress ensemble.

I would love to hear your thoughts on my looks and which flavour you prefer! I love both flavours, but I think the Double Coconut is my preference as the coconut reminds me of tropical getaways and blissful summer days.

Magnum Double Coconut Ice Cream Magnum Double Coconut Ice Cream

Magnum x Moschino

I’m sure you’ve heard already, but Magnum has also been working with Jeremy Scott and Moschino to release a special edition bag capsule Magnum x Moschino. I’ve been wearing the pink bag all around town as it is such a fun and whimsical addition to my wardrobe!

Magnum x Moschino Bag Magnum x Moschino Bag

Spring Blush Tones

Mariko Kuo in Jaeger camel coat Mariko Kuo in Jaeger camel coat Mariko Kuo in Jaeger camel coat Mariko Kuo in Jaeger camel coat Mariko Kuo in Jaeger camel coat Mariko Kuo in Jaeger camel coat Mariko Kuo in Jaeger camel coat Mariko Kuo in Jaeger camel coat

Wool cashmere boyfriend coat | Jaeger , Jumper | Gestuz
Serpenti handbag | Bvlgari , Ankle boots | Acne Studios

Photographed by Moeez Ali

Raw Hem Cropped Jeans

Naked shoulder top | Zara, Raw hem cropped jeans | Jaeger

Custom made court shoes | Faber Novella, Wallet on Chain| Chanel

Photographed by Form 42.

Underwear: The New Outerwear

Wacoal Frivole Collection

The new spring summer season is all about underwear as the new outerwear.  From lace bralets to silk chemise, these usually unseen garments are making a major statement and putting underwear on show has never been so hot. There are so many lingerie brands out there, but I wanted to talk about Wacoal today as one of my go to brands for achieving this sexy new trend.

Founded in 1946 in Japan, Wacoal is for me the epitome of elegance and functionality.  My first shopping trip as a new teenager with my mum for a bra was at Wacoal and since then, the label has held a very special place in heart.  I have always sworn by Wacoal for its exceptional quality, fit and comfort.  So I am so excited to talk about Wacoal’s new Spring Summer 17 Frivole Collection with you!

Wacoal’s Spring Summer 17 Frivole Collection features bras to fit every occasion (with the necessary support as well!) and coordinated briefs and chemise all adorned with intricate lace and art deco inspired motifs.  Every single piece is comfortable to wear as they are created from a delicate two tone stretch lace material.  I absolutely love wearing these pieces both under my everyday outfits, but also as a statement outerwear choice.  I particularly swear by the Frivole chemise (which comes in both black and nougat) that can be worn as an elegant lace top or for the more daring, as a sexy dress.  My recommended styling tips for the chemise would be to either dress it down like I have here, with some comfy denim and chunky knit or to dress it up with a statement boyfriend blazer and killer heels for maximum wow factor.

The underwear as outerwear trend has never been this fun and I really hope you can join in by wearing something beautiful from Wacoal’s Frivole Spring Summer 17 Collection!

Find the entire Wacoal Frivole Collection here!

Lace Chemise | Wacoal

Bras | Wacoal

Knit Cardigan | Gestuz , Raw Hem Cropped Jeans | Jaeger , Cony Boots | Acne , Handbag | Bulgari

New York State of Mind

Our second day in New York started bright and early with a walk over Brooklyn Bridge.  With virtually no wind and the warm sun beaming down on us, the Hudson river and the view of the concrete metropolis was a glorious sight to remember.  After conquering my slight fear of bridges, we made our way across to Brooklyn and explored the streets of Brooklyn Heights.

Charlotte Simone’s leather sheerling jacket was the perfect ‘it’ jacket for strolling around in New York.  Teamed with my trusty denim and Acne Studio walking boots of dreams, my off duty biker look seemed to fit in with the bustling streets so well.

 

Sheerling Sleeve Biker Jacket | Charlotte Simone , Mini Bag | Furla , Cony Boots | Acne Studio

Perspex Glasses | Black Eyewear , Knit hat | Cos

 

Breakfast in New York

Jetlag played a major part in my first full day in New York.  That usually would mean that the day is ruined, but for me, this turned out to be one of my best days ever spent in this city.  Wide awake by 5 am, we started off the day with homestyle American breakfast at Bubby’s in Tribeca.  With a belly full of caramelised banana and walnut pancakes, we thought, why not go for a walk instead of going back to the Conrad straight away.  It was just after 7 am after all and seeing so many dog walkers all around the cobbled streets of this area tempted us to carry on.  Who knew that this nonchalant thought would turn our ‘short walk’ into an epic 6 hours (9 miles) walk through all of my favourite areas of New York!

Tribeca lead us to Greenwich via Bleecker Street and then to the High Line.  Fighting though gail force winds from the Hudson, we walked the entire stretch of the High Line followed by a much needed coffee stop in Chelsea to warm up.  It was only when we stopped for a cuppa that we realised that by this point, we had been walking over 4 hours zig zagging around Lower Manhattan.  Given that we had walked so far already, it only felt right to reverse back to our hotel on foot.  And so our breakfast run finally came to an end around 1 pm – just in time for lunch and some more walking around the streets of New York.

The Look

For all New Yorkers, it might be quite obvious that these shots were actually shot not during our epic walk, but afterwards whilst strolling through Downtown New York.  Given the extreme cold and wind, wearing something knitted was an absolute must and so this Next off the shoulder knit was the perfect combination of warmth and a little bit of sex appeal.  I particularly love the ruffled detail which floated around with the wind!  I teamed this piece with some ripped denim and my trusty Acne boots (which can I just say should get the biggest stamp of approval for long distance walking).

Ruffled off the shoulder jumper | Next , Coat | The Fold , Denim | Zara

Boots | Acne Studio , Handbag | Furla , Glasses | Black Eyewear

Ruffled Off the Shoulder Knits and Tops

For all of you lovelies who are looking for a ruffled off the shoulder top/knits, here are some of my top choices! xxx

Photographed by Paige Campbell Linden

Confessions of a Secret Elf Girl

Embrace December by Wearing Over the Knee Boots!

 

I was in Christmas turbo drive since late November, but with December FINALLY here, I’ve had one whole ham, two yule logs, four mince pies, a few* glasses of vino and one raw chestnut as I couldn’t wait for them to be roasted (big mistake!). Things are definitely going to get even more Chrismassy by the day now that I have a giant Christmas tree set up in the living room as well!

With Christmas around the corner, I love embracing this month by wearing boots which are stylish and comfortable.  And I should own up to the fact that as it’s bloody freezing outside now, I want every bit of my body covered up as much as possible. The best way to achieve this is by finding the ultimate over the knee boots which gives maximum coverage.  Kurt Geiger‘s range of over the knee boots is simply put, incredible!  With a full range of OKBs from sky highs which are perfect for Christmas parties and cocktail hour to low heeled suede boots that are ideal for everyday outfits, there is definitely a perfect boot for everyone.

I particuarly love my new OKB which incorporates a very stylish and on trend metallic mid heel.  It’s such a perfect day to night boot that can be worn for any occassion.  I particularly love wearing them casually with denim on weekends and with a pencil skirt or a midi dress for work!

Find Kurt Geiger‘s full winter boots collection here!

Mariko Kuo in Kurt Geiger Over the Knee Boots Mariko Kuo in Kurt Geiger Over the Knee Boots Mariko Kuo in Kurt Geiger Over the Knee Boots mariko-kuo-kurt-geiger-over-the-knee-boots Mariko Kuo in Kurt Geiger Over the Knee Boots Mariko Kuo in Kurt Geiger Over the Knee BootsMariko Kuo in Kurt Geiger Over the Knee Boots Mariko Kuo in Kurt Geiger Over the Knee Boots Mariko Kuo in Kurt Geiger Over the Knee Boots

Over the Knee Boots | Kurt Geiger

Fur Gilet | Day Birger et Mikkelsen

Blouse | Marc Jacobs

Velvet Blazer | Gestuz

Sunglasses | Miu Miu

Photographed by Moeez Ali.