January has started of as one hell of a ride for many reasons. I went into this year with so many to-do lists, affirmations and a color-coded, monthly goals overview. I wanted to go into the new year as perfectly as I could but life happens.
The problems didn’t occur with me as a person but hit on a personal level. The people that I love and care for went through things that couldn’t understand nor relate to. Being the eldest sibling, you kind of have to be the one to fix all the problems and care for everyone as your own. It was disappointing because I was so keen on having everything super perfect this year that the slightest inconvenience literally pained me. After re-evaluating everything I took a step back to chill. It could be worse right?
Honestly, everyone needs to stop having this fixation on the perfect life. You can have all the money and riches in the world but things happen that is beyond anyone. I’m learning that things happen for a reason and life events happen the way they are intended to, regardless if we like the outcome or not. Don’t let a bad moment consume your positivity. Thank you, next January....2019 starts in February.
I brought in the new year with my amazing pieces from Femme Luxe Finery. I was extremely surprised at how fast my items were delivered to me just in time for the holidays and although this is a fast fashion brand, the items are very good quality. Honestly, they’ve provided one of the best customer services I’ve experienced and the staffs are the best babes, making you feel like we’ve all been friends for ages. Their jumpers and women's dresses range is everything - unique styles and patterns unlike the normal sweaters on every clothing site. My favourite item in my basket was the mocha chocolate midi dress I wore for New Years Eve, as it was sexy and super silky. (Now I want one in every colour!) I will definitely be supporting them again in the near future!
Sometimes I like to get out of the office or my home and complete my workload in a different setting. A change of scenery is always good for someone like me who gets easily distracted in familiar place such as my flat. The chain franchises that have been around for as long as I can remember will always have their clientele but the smaller, themed and up-in-coming cafes that tell a story are what we should be investing in.
Tea time is a must in the UK and its one of my favorite things so do since relocating here. Here are a few cafes that I have visited and loved in London so far! Enjoy!
1. Elan Cafe : Hans Crescent, London
2. Spectrum Cafe : Carnaby Street, London
Located in Carnaby Street, upstairs of the Spectrum store, this café is full of velvet goodness and neon lights. It’s basically their makeup brush collections created into a cute place for coffee. (If that makes sense!) They have a limited menu but the Instagramable space makes up for it! IG: @spectrumcollections
3. Crumbs & Doilies : Kingly Court, London
Although not an actual café, it’s the best way to bring the goodies back home to have your own tea time. They customized my lovely little cupcakes for my birthday last year and their creative team make the best cakes. They also offer a vegan selection as well!
4. Palm Vaults : Hackney, London
A bit far to travel from my place but was worth it. It has a tropical feel that reminds me of home, which is a nice touch. Lavender and blush, from the decor to the actual lattes. Their Instagram promotes positivity and equality which I love. IG: @palmvaults
5. Bru Harrow : Harrow, London
Rustic and vintage aesthetics all around. Definitely a homey atmosphere and the staff are so friendly. Apart from the normal hot drinks that are typically at a café, they have an impressive range of homemade gelatos. It’s in my neighbourhood and has become my favourite spot to do my work when I need to get out of the house. IG: @bru.uk
6. Saint Amyes : Connaught Street, London
Such a “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” vibe! Best place to go for the vintage Vogue and cotton candy lovers like myself. Created my two amazing sisters makes it better because....ahh girl power! I’d recommend the chai latte and cupcakes for sure. It’s located in a cute little neighbourhood that matches it’s quaint theme. IG: @saintamyes
BLAZER DRESS - Wear the Walk
As a blogger, finding the perfect places to shoot that both go with your theme and also where nobody has shot before is a task. Living in Bermuda I was limited to different locations - although a very beautiful island it's really just your beach, garden, sunset and tropical scenery. Being in London, I've come across the most amazing backdrops that can compliment any outfit. I love how vibrant London is and how different areas have different themes.
It's easy for bloggers to end up at the same locations, trust me I've seen lots of people at the same recycled places on Instagram so many times. I took it upon myself to do my research and find the most unique places to shoot. I chose locations that are within locations, so that you can be in a popular area but it gives one that opportunity to explore all around and find lots of new hidden treasures in one place.
Here are 5 of my favourite locations to shoot in London:
1. London Bridge - If you like the vintage look this location is a must for you. The area is so huge you can explore all the small bits and you'll be sure to find something cool through every little street. Borough Market which is located right next to the station is a different place to shoot, with all the produce carts, flower shops and brick pubs.
2. Brick Lane - Very retro and very vintage, this area is so iconic and you'll be sure to find something artsy on every corner. There are loads of graffiti to take amazing photos in front of. The market comes alive on the weekends and is very busy but is an amazing atmosphere full of artsy people.
3. Green Park - If you're going for the vintage glam look this is your place. The Ritz is located right outside of the tube station and the streets are filled with boutiques and the cutest glitzy cake shops. Well I mean, this is literally the Queen's neighbourhood after all.
4. Canary Wharf - This location is for your best "girl boss" looks. Surrounded by high risers and corporate life, this place gives me such a powerful feeling. Maybe it's just me but being in a place with so many business people makes me feel like I can do anything (I mean, I can but you know).
5. Bayswater - Introduced to me by my boyfriend, who might I mention would not stop talking about this location the whole commute there, is one of the loveliest places in London. It's gorgeous during the summer and is located by Hyde Park. The thing I love most about this area is the small shops along the streets and the manicured flowers on every corner. It's also walking distance from Little Venice which looks just like an Italian canal, enough said.
Dress created by me! Follow: @houseofaiyanna on Instagram for my new collection!
Happiness doesn't always mean the things that others do for you that makes you happy - sometimes you have to be your own form that.
Often times people search for happiness in another person. When you love someone that person adds on the the parts of your life that are carefree but when things go wrong that can easily take it all away. Happiness isn't in the form of a person, it starts with you yourself. If you want to live a stress free life, you have focus on what you're allowing to consume you.
Things I did to relieve negative vibes
- I purified my thoughts. I started yoga classes and personal mediation were I was able to release all the tension. I also wrote all the things that were bothering me and all my bad thoughts down on a piece of paper and burned it, as my way of eliminating and letting go.
- I switched around my room. I arranged items in places they usually aren't and organized anything that was cluttered. This was my way of adding some form of organization to my life.
- Everyone loves a good bit of "tea" but I didn't engage myself in gossip or anything that caused negative thoughts. I even went so far as to eliminate anything that had to do with people that hurt me in the past that would cause bad flashbacks.
- Body detoxing. What you put inside your body makes a difference also. I tried detox tea for the first time and got rid of any junk foods I had in my apartment. I also went to the spa to have a cleansing facial.
- Treat yourself. Even if it's something as small as buying a shirt you really want, if it makes you happy do it. I like shopping and that's what makes me happy so I purchased a few items that I loved.
- Talk so someone you love. This doesn't mean you have to tell them exactly what's going on but just engage with someone who makes you happy, who lifts your spirits. (That would be my grandma, she's a doll)
Jacket from Blitz London
Somewhere on everyone's blog there is a bit about how you should go about blogging - tips, don't's and just overall ways to improve both your following and content. But they never really give the raw details about how blogging really goes, so I'm here to inform you all. Happy Reading!
- Your blog will change so don't try to make it perfect the first time. I change my blog template about twice a year and I'm always improving a feature. Don't stress yourself over everything.
- Blogger cliques do exist. Feeling left out? That's the motive. Don't get me wrong, I have a London fashion squad but it's when certain groups of girls think they're better than others, we have a problem. It doesn't hurt or cost to be kind to others.
- You don't have to look like everyone else. Yeah it's nice to explore the trends that are popping up everywhere but make sure you have something unique to offer. The amount of stylists I've worked with that find that bloggers all look the same is terrible. Bring something new to the table.
- Follow to Unfollow. This is very annoying once you catch on to the fact that some bloggers will follow you on Instagram or Twitter then the next day unfollow you. Some people are just out to get the followers but since I've been working with PR agencies, I've found out that most times its not the actual blogger doing it. There are new softwares that promote organic followers (not bought) and the system will automatically do this. So maybe she's not a complete b*tch after all.
- Being inconsistent will be your downfall. A week of not posting on Instagram will take you from 900 page views to 100 easily. Give the people what they want!
- Your feed is your resume. Every brand or PR agency thinking about working with you will check your Instagram feed first so make sure you have professional shots and things worth looking at! Please
- Brands will tell you no. Please don't get too upset about this because things won't always go as planned but if you make a long list of companies and contact them all you're going to find someone that wants to work with you. AND be realist. You're not going to land a Missguided campaign on your first go babes.
- I've realized that posting at certain times really doesn't matter when you have loyal followers. If they want to see you, they know where to find you. Don't get worked up about posting at exact times.