Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Beautiful Sparkling London

This post is just a quick one to share the treasures I come across at the V&A Museum this weekend. We went to London to see The Libertines at Hyde Park, which was well worth the ten-year wait, went on a midnight wander past Big Ben, the London Eye and back up past Buckingham Palace (feet were so sore by this point!) and caught some of the Wimbledon final at Duke of York Square!

Waiting in line to get our books signed

It would have been rude not to have dropped by the V&A whilst in the area, so I had a quick look around before catching up with my friend watching Wimbledon. With my increasing interest in travelling to Nepal someday, I wanted to see some of the statues and artefacts from this beautiful Buddhist country. I immediately gravitated towards this gilded copper statue of Bodishattva Avalokiteshvara studded with semi-precious gemstones, which was made by Newar craftsmen for Tibetan patrons, and the statue originally held the stem of a flowering lotus in the left hand.

Bodishattva Avalokiteshvara

Bodishattva Avalokiteshvara

It wasn't long until I found myself in the fashion gallery, which featured stunning works from 1750's to the present day. With my love for embellishment and embroidery, and being a bit of a magpie, I was bowled over by the intricate designs as I came in from the left. The virginal yet opulent ostrich feather designs on a Balmain gown, carefully entwined encrustations on coral shoes by Roger Vivier for Dior, a heavily decadent purple creation by Rébé, more gorgeously embellished shoes by Roger Vivier and a gothic lace and crystal choker necklace by Dior all dazzled under the show lights.

Pierre Balmain

Roger Vivier for Dior


Roger Vivier


I left with too many books (I only ordered some online a few days previously as they have an amazing 70% of sale!) and not enough pictures, though feeling inspired to make a solid start on some special hand embellished and embroidered pieces! Will post more on the embellished project soon...

Melanie xx

Michelle for Engage Magazine

Earlier in the year, I met up with with the lovely Michelle Taylor of Tallulah Love, to interview her for the launch issue of new local magazine Engage. It was a while back that the editor of the magazine, James Tennant, kindly approached me to write fashion articles for Engage. After a small discussion on what type of article to write, would it be a how to wear? An interview? A review? James was keen on the idea of promoting designers from the North East in keeping with the theme of a local, community-centred magazine, and I immediately thought of Michelle. Who better to interview for the launch issue than the founder of the most successful lingerie company in the North East, an inspirational lady who is very much an important part of our local fashion network? Luckily, Michelle was more than happy to meet for a coffee and a catch-up, and it was delightful to see her again and talk about her recent exciting adventures with Tallulah!

After our interview and catch-up, and me getting all misty-eyed over the Tallulah bras Michelle had with her, we thought it would be a wonderful idea to do a present swap with Tallulah Love Lingerie and Melanie Kyles accessories! She had already offered me a set of 'Frillies', an unashamedly soft and feminine  set of bra and knickers adorned with peachy frills, lace and ribbons that I'd been admiring for weeks. They feel soft but surprisingly durable due to the carefully selected mesh, and are completed with an embroidered Tallulah signature, they made feel like a princess the second I had them on! Showing her some of the accessories I had taken to a vintage tea-party stall at Newcastle University, she fell in love with the teal floral collar so I offered to make her reversible cuffs to match.

Floral 'Dusty' Collar
Floral 'Dusty' Cuffs (original)
Floral 'Dusty' Cuffs (reversed)

A few weeks later once she had returned from a much deserved holiday and I had made her cuffs, we met back at her favourite cubby hole in Pink Lane Cafe to do our gift swap! I also  met her lovely intern Lucy, who took these pictures of us with our gifts:

Buttoning Michelle into her new cuffs
Michelle and I with our beautifully wrapped parcels
Match made in heaven
My gorgeous set of Tallulah frillies

Michelle was kind enough to later send me some photos of her wearing her new 'Melanie Kyles' collar and cuffs (unfortunately it wouldn't have been quite the same if I returned the favour of me in my new frillies!), and she looks stunning! Here she has paired them with a statement necklace and metallic corset in true pin-up style...

Michelle looking gorgeous in her 'Dusty' set

As well as wearing her set on nights out with the girls, she has also worn them for important business meetings and working in Tallulah HQ! Here is a lush picture of Michelle looking glamorous at her desk wearing her 'Dusty' collar with a simple jersey dress and cardigan...

Michelle working at Tallulah HQ

I'm over the moon with our swaps, I adore my 'frilly' set and I'm so pleased Michelle is loving wearing her new accessories! The first ever issue of 'Engage' magazine has now launched, so for all you lovely people that live in or near Gateshead, keep your eye out for the magazine where you will find my interview with Michelle and hear about her latest Tallulah adventures!

Here are some links to see more from Tallulah Love:

And if you don't have access to Engage magazine, the articles will be available to read online once the magazine is published!

Melanie xx