Fashion and fundraising: Hillary does retail


This week, the Hillary Clinton campaign store was officially launched. Filled with a range of chic, youth orientated products; the Hillary team is selling merchandise that will help to define her second campaign for President.

Supporters can choose from a range of items including a ‘I <3 a="" hillary="" tumbler="">, a Future Voter onesie and my personal favourite- a Stitch by Stitch Throw Pillow proclaiming that ‘A Woman’s Place is in the White House.’

From a marketing perspective, the range of products will help to define Clinton’s image as one that is relevant, accessible and importantly, issue based.

Many of the products highlight key moments from Clinton’s years of public service and help to establish a record as she campaigns for the presidency. Her famous Beijing women’s rights speech is referenced in a tee shirt and her support for US workers in the origin of where the products are made.

Clinton also shows her fun side with supporters able to purchase an ‘everyday pantsuit’ tee that taps into her status as a ‘pantsuit’ fashion icon.

Clinton joined the campaign in a strong position thanks to the Ready for Hillary team. The grassroots movement collected over 4 million identified supporters, and more that 135,000 donors. The group have raised over $15 million for Clinton, and this new store will help the campaign to raise important funds as well as building upon her vast email list.

I’m excited to see what new products will be released over the coming months, and whatever the final outcome, they are bound to be collectable!

White House Week


First Lady Michelle Obama is presented an honor sash during Oberlin College commencement ceremony in Oberlin, Ohio May 25, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)
This week, the First Lady addressed the graduating Oberlin College class in Oberlin, Ohio. The College was selected as part of the First Lady’s Reach Higher initiative’s “Near-Peer Mentoring College” Challenge – a challenge to institutes of higher education urging them to share videos on the ways they are helping high school students take charge of their future.

You can watch her inspiring remarks below:

Health and Human Services Secretary Burwell announced that the 2015 White House Conference on Aging will be held on July 13.

The July event will continue the Administration's year-long effort to listen, learn, and share with older adults, their families, caregivers, advocates, community leaders, and experts in the aging field on how to best address the changing landscape of aging in the coming decade. The 2015 Conference aims to embrace the transformative demographic shift occurring in the United States to recognize the possibilities of aging. For more details on the Conference click here.

Check out what else the President has been up to this week in the video below:

In Pictures: Edinburgh Trip


This past week I've been in Edinburgh. I was last in the city two years ago during the Fringe Festival so it was good to visit at a different time of year!

Bute House, Official Residence of the Scottish First Minister
Friday was dedicated to strolling along Princes Street and a mandatory stop at Harvey Nichols in Multrees Walk. In the evening we dined at Amarone, an amazing Italian restaurant located in Georges Street. Do not miss it if you're in the city!

Saturday and Sunday we walked to the Castle and through Princes Street Gardens. I love exploring the old buildings, and I think the Royal Mile is one of my favourite parts of Edinburgh.

On Monday, we had an early trip to the Royal Yacht Britannia before it opened to the public. Once used by the Queen as her 'floating residence,' the yacht is now the UK's No.1 tourist attraction. It was super fun to visit and see behind the scenes, as well as many personal effects. Definitely visit if you're going to be in the area! For more photos from my trip to the yacht visit my Flickr page.

The Bloodhound racing yacht
Rum barrel
It was the perfect mini break, and with only an hour's flying time, I'll likely visit again!

Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries


I have a new obsession: a great Australian television show called Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries.

Set in the 1920s, Miss Phryne Fisher (played by the amazing Essie Davis,) returns to Melbourne after spending time overseas. She's glamorous, wealthy and tonnes of fun- and she's a lady detective. After a friend's husband is found dead in the bathroom of their home, Miss Fisher gets to work trying to solve the murder, albeit it to the annoyance of the local Detective Inspector, Jack Robinson.

Apart from the great storylines, humour and backstories of each of the lovable characters, I love the show for its fashion and set design. Costume designer Marion Boyce is a marvel, and everything that Phryne wears is a picture of perfection. From cloches to tennis whites, fur stoles to beaded evening gowns, everything is spot on and super chic. And Miss Fisher's house? It's set in the historic Wardlow House in Melbourne, although scenes in the Art Deco interior are filmed on the ABC Studios set.

Very rarely do I watch a television show where I actually like all the characters, but, I love all of them! From noble companion Dorothy, to Mr Butler, drivers Cec and Bert, Aunt Prudence and adopted daughter Jane, all of the characters play central roles in Miss Fisher's daily life. A recurring theme throughout the series is the 'will they, won't they' dynamic of Miss Fisher's relationship with Inspector Jack Robinson. Fans across the globe are all hoping that they will!

Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries is a hit with viewers across the globe, and it has a strong following thanks to Netflix in the US. For me, it provides an hour of fun escapism, and Melbourne has now appeared on my bucket list of places to visit. Melbourne is currently playing host to the 'Festival of Phryne', a series of events dedicated to all aspects of the show. Historic Ripponlea (featured in the show,) currently has an amazing exhibit of costumes and props from the show- you even get to see Miss Fisher's pearl and gold gun! I wish I was visiting!

So, if you're looking for a fun new show to watch in the evenings or want to be mesmerised by some amazing dresses and jewels, give Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries a try!

5 ways travel can benefit your life


Travelling to exotic and far-flung places across the world can be one of the most exciting experiences that one can be treated too. The feeling when the plane touches down in a foreign land is one of jubilation, with maybe a few nerves added in for good measure. I’ve been fortunate to travel to many of the world’s countries and often think of how travel has enriched my life.

So how can travel benefit your life?

Travel can broaden your mind

At times it may be hard to see further outside the village, town or city that you currently live in. Taking a step out of your comfort zone and travelling to another country can broaden your mind, opening your life to a wide range of possibilities. The first time I travelled abroad I couldn’t believe how big the world actually was, and from that moment on I had the travel bug.

Travel provides experiences of other cultures

What can be better than to experience how other individuals live their daily lives? When travelling, I love to see and experience how the locals live. It’s always great to visit restaurants off the tourist track, experience local culture and nightlife, and find out more about the history of the area that you have landed in. Whenever I travel, the first night is always dedicated to a gentle, fact-finding walk around the neighborhood.

Travel can improve your resume

Why not investigate a gap year volunteering in another country, or apply for a work placement abroad? I travelled to Washington, DC for an internship in the US House of Representatives, and the experience has made my resume stand out.

Travel encourages you to try new things

Travel offers the opportunity to step out of your comfort zone, and embrace the chance to try new things. Bungee jump, go yachting or cross something off your bucket list- this is where new memories can be made!

Travel helps to clear your mind and press ‘reset’ on your dreams and priorities

I’ve got a definite case of wanderlust, and whenever I travel, the time away helps me to press reset on my dreams and priorities, reassessing the direction I want to take all areas of my life. Time away from a stressful job or busy home life is precious, the change of scenery often providing the mental and physical space to reflect on important decisions. I returned from my recent trip away ready to take on the decisions in my life that I had been putting off, the time across the ocean, providing me with the thinking space that I needed.

How has travel benefitted your life? Share your thoughts with me in the comments! 

White House Week


Perhaps the most exciting bit of news from The White House this week was that the President officially joined Twitter! 

I wasn't the only one that got excited. 

Away from the White House, I attended a special luncheon in honor of the American Ambassador to the UK, Ambassador Matthew Barzun. It was fantastic to hear of his passion for the UK - and his love of Wales!

A trip to the BG Restaurant


Searching for a chic place to catch up with friends and enjoy some delicious cuisine? Take a trip the BG restaurant at Bergdorf Goodman.

When I was in Manhattan last month, I headed to the Seventh Floor of this American institution for fun and fine food on a Friday night. Designed by renowned interior designer Kelly Wearstler, the four  room space has glorious views over Central Park, and is the perfect place to spy on what's happening at the Plaza!

To eat, I had the amazing Oven Roasted Scottish Salmon and the deliciously naughty BG- a flourless hazelnut cake with white and dark chocolate mousse, raspberries and a caramel drizzle. Well worth flying over 3000 miles for!

There were plenty of people still enjoying afternoon tea when we arrived, and the restaurant took on a cozy feel as the crowds left. In fact, we were the last to leave (and I know that we didn't want to really!)

The service was exceptional, the staff friendly and I couldn't have asked for a more memorable and special evening with dear friends.

For further details on BG click here. Reservations are recommended. 

Tips for short haul trip packing


I regularly travel on long haul journeys so this week's short haul trip to Edinburgh feels like luxury!

Having just returned from a long journey, packing a suitcase is the last thing that I want to do. For long haul journeys I've got the suitcase and the routine down to a fine art, so packing for less than five days is feeling like a bit of a challenge! I'm not a girl who travels lightly, so the thought of taking the bare minimum is causing quite a panic.

Here's what my short trip haul is looking like so far:


My large L.L. Bean tote (complete with monogram!) is a serious contender for all my essentials. It's strong, durable and incredibly roomy.


I usually travel with five pairs of shoes.... so this trip I am aiming for three. My New Balance x Bergdorf Goodman sneakers will be on my feet when I travel and for exploring the city. They are the most comfortable sneakers EVER! I'll pack my pair of Chanel ballet flats for the daytime events when I need to be a bit dressy, and my J.Crew leopard wedges for nighttime fun!


Here's where the dilemma begins... what's the weather going to be like? I've been advised to take a coat with me, so I'll be taking my trusty Barbour jacket which has literally travelled the world with me.

A pair of black jeans and x2 black pants will be perfect to mix and match for travelling and for each day, and I'll throw in a super light asymmetrical linen black jacket for hopping between lunches, meetings and sightseeing.

My stash of trusty striped Breton tees in every color scheme imaginable will also be making an appearance, as will some cute lace tops in black and white for the evenings. Simple is best!

I'll also throw in a few favourite pieces of knitwear that I can mix and match, and two neutral scarves depending on what top I'll be wearing.


I'll take my most personal of jewels as well as this fun necklace from Knotty Gal for nighttime fun! I'll also be using my Chanel bag in the evenings and for when I don't need to carry my large Longchamp tote.


This is one area that I excel at. I've amassed quite a collection of travel sized toiletries for my various trips, and my washbag has to be one of the most organised I've ever seen! I have travel sized versions of my favourite make-up items, and just pack my regular brushes to make sure something stays the same!

Other Essentials

Work won't stop for me- I'll be taking my MacBook, various chargers as well as my Nikon for those essential sightseeing snaps.

How do you pack for a short-haul trip? Does the dreaded baggage allowance stress you out? Share your tips with me in the comments! 

The Art of the Written Letter


A glossy envelope. Scrolled handwriting. A sparkling sticker. Nothing can rival the excitement when a handwritten letter arrives.

Writing and receiving handwritten notes are something of a passion. I keep all cards and letters that I receive, and I'll often sort through the box and revisit special notes or messages when looking back or seeking inspiration!

I'd like to think of myself as a letter writer on par with Jackie Kennedy. She famously declared that she would pen a thank you note as soon as she had received a gift, met with a friend or returned home from a party. It is individuals like Kennedy that keep the mystique of a handwritten letter alive, and I get as much joy from writing a note as I do receiving one.

So what do you need for a properly written letter?

Proper equipment

Start with the basics. Paper or notecards? Ink or biro? Lined envelopes or something plainer? Choose your essentials wisely.

Signature style

Choose something personal for your stash. Perhaps you'll go for a monogrammed set of cards with matching envelopes, or send out headed paper engraved with your address? You could go one step further and have cards printed with your own photographs or a favourite quote.

I have a set of cards from the JFK Library that I send out on special occasions as well as monogrammed notecards and special Air Mail stationery for friends overseas.

Keep your supplies stocked

I make sure my favourite coloured pens, stickers and stamps are always in supply and are safely secured in my special letter box. (Organised much?!)

I also have different cards and papers for various occasions- this saves any last minute stress when I need to reply to someone or send a card at the last minute.

Choose your words carefully

When replying to a letter, I always re-read it two to three times to ensure any questions or topics are properly covered. There's nothing worse than receiving a reply to a letter that doesn't answer what you've asked! I always draft out my reply before committing the final words to paper, enabling me to change things around and review what I've written.

Include all the details

It may sound simple, but it can be easy to overlook important details like the date, contact details and even a return address! Double check before you send!

Check the postage

I send many letters, cards and parcels overseas. I keep a handy postage guide in my desk drawer to ensure that my recipient doesn't have to pay any added postage cost!

How do you make your letters special? I'd love to hear your tips for great stationery and accessories!

White House Week


President Barack Obama greets young entrepreneurs in the vestibule of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building South Court Auditorium prior to remarks at the 2015 Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship (PAGE) and Young Entrepreneurs event, May 11, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

This week at the White House, President Obama welcomed emerging entrepreneurs from across the country and around the world to the White House to honor their achievements in their fields of business at the Global Entrepreneurship meeting.

He also announced new commitments in support of the Spark Global Entrepreneurship Initiative -- a bold goal of generating $1 billion in new investment for emerging entrepreneurs worldwide by 2017, and issued a call to action to companies, organizations, and individuals across the globe to increase their support to emerging entrepreneurs, before his trip to Kenya in July for the Global Entrepreneurship Summit.

President Obama and Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker announced today that nine new members have joined the Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship (PAGE) initiative:

Brian Chesky, co-founder and CEO, Airbnb
Antonio Gracias, CEO and Chief Investment Officer, Valor Equity Partners
Julie Hanna, Executive Chair of the Board, Kiva
Elizabeth Holmes, Founder and CEO, Theranos
Daymond John, Founder, FUBU, and CEO, Shark Branding
Daniele Lubetzky, CEO and Founder, KIND Snacks
Ali Rosenthal, Vice President, Strategic Partnerships, Wealthfront
Debbie Sterling, Founder and CEO, GoldieBlox
Andrew Yang, Founder and CEO, Venture for America

For more details on the Initiative and President Obama's remarks click here.

First Lady Michelle Obama delivered the commencement address to the Class of 2015 at Tuskegee University, Alabama. Founded by Booker T. Washington in 1881, Tuskegee is the only university in America to be designated as a National Historic Site. Check out her inspiring remarks below!

President Obama sat down with Harvard professor Robert Putnam and American Enterprise Institute president Arthur Brooks to share his views on poverty in America. Watch the conversation below.

The Pink Peonies Collection


In a world where bloggers are becoming designers, it's great to see some of my favourites releasing collections!

Enter Rach Parcell, owner of Pink Peonies. Her new Pink Peonies jewellery collection is going down a storm, and is filled with all things sparkly and elegant. What's more, the pieces are offered at affordable price points, meaning that we can all have a little 'pink' style in our wardrobes!

Check out some of my favourites from the collection below.

Women's Health Month: Take Control of Your Health


May is Women's Health Month, and the advocacy campaign raises awareness on taking control of your health. Going for a check-up, having a scan or just visiting the doctor is something that many of us put off or try to put at the back of our mind.

We all lead busy lives, and often it is hard to schedule an appointment at a time that works for you. I've been there, and I always feel much happier when I've made the effort and gone along to see the doctor.

It's important to keep on top of the little things. Need immunizations? Make an appointment to get them done. Blood test? Don't chicken out. Screening? Take the time.

The handy infographic from Oscar Insurance provides you with further details on what you should be thinking about at the different stages of your life. Similarly, follow the advice of your elders and eat healthily, exercise and take a break from what you're working on. These small changes can make a big difference in the long run! 

Pulleez: Making Ponytails Pretty


I don't know about you, but if I need to tie back my hair, I usually grab the first hair elastic I can find. They're likely to be purchased from the drugstore and not particularly fancy. So, what about when you want your ponytail to be functional and pretty?

Enter Pulleez! Diana Wright originally created Pulleez out of necessity; she needed a ponytail accessory to use on models backstage that would easily hold hair without leaving behind the dreaded crease that comes from twisting an elastic band in the hair multiple times.

Pulleez became an instant hit backstage and they were soon spotted on the runway. In her “real job” as a mom of four, Diana soon found herself wearing Pulleez in her daily life and sharing them with her friends. She quickly realized that that all women, not just models, deserved a luxury ponytail accessory that was simple to use and gentle on the hair.

My ponytails have certainly become more sophisticated since I started wearing Pulleez - plus my hair no longer has that awful crease that normal hair ties leave.

Pulleez hair ties come in a variety of affordable styles and designs- give a girl the right accessories and she can conquer the world!

*I was sent a selection of Pulleez products to try- all opinions are my own.*

Lessons Learned: Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis


Author's Own

I’ve always been endlessly fascinated by Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis. At first, I was in love with her sense of style, but I soon began to see how living by some of her lessons could positively impact my own life.

The importance of trust 

There’s no denying that trust, in whatever aspect of your life, is important. A book I read discussed how she wouldn't give a second chance to an individual who broke her trust. Like Jackie, I have learned from experience on this particular point, and I increasingly find myself placing importance on the role trust plays in all areas of my life.

Never stop learning

Jackie had an incredible interest in reading, and in her later years, she became an Editor at Viking and at Doubleday. I follow her example and read as much as I can. From political books to laid-back novels, I always learn something whatever the literature.


It is so important to take the time to disconnect from the stresses in your life. Turn off the devices, open the window and breathe deeply!

Make time for your health

Both Jackie and President Kennedy suffered from health issues, and their struggles have reinforced the importance of staying in shape and getting yearly check-ups. Work out more, take walks in your local neighborhood, visit your doctor regularly, and eat healthily!

Always say thank you

Jackie was a dedicated letter writer, always writing and mailing her thank you letters the next day. Saying thank you doesn’t cost much, nor is it much of an effort. A small gesture can make all the difference, and more often than not, make the recipient’s day. Hand written notes are always best, so why not invest in some gorgeous cards or personalised notepaper?

Preserve history

Jacqueline Kennedy was committed to preserving America’s history. From her time in the White House, to resident of 1040 Fifth Avenue, Kennedy always took a keen interest in the history of her city. Perhaps you feel passionate about a local project and are looking to volunteer, or you want to raise important funds to save history in your area. Whatever the topic, get involved!

Find your inner strength

This is perhaps one of the most valuable lessons I have learned from the former First Lady. All of us are facing personal struggles, and when at our gloomiest, it is so important to have someone we can look up too in the hope that they will provide us with some light. Jacqueline Kennedy reminds me to stay strong whatever the trouble, to retain my poise, my grace and my sense that things will get better.

AERIN for Mother's Day


US readers: If you haven't purchased a gift yet for Mother's Day then don't despair! The limited edition AERIN Mother's Day fragrance gift package is the perfect belated gift. The package contains two two travel size fragrances- Waterlily Sun and Iris Meadow in a custom gift box paired with a full size fragrance version of choice.

To purchase head to

White House Week: Marking VE Day


Rifle Paper Company


From postcards to prints, exhibition posters to personal memories, my walls are adorned with lots of things! I'm fast running out of space to hang things, but these Manhattan and Washington DC prints from Rifle Paper Company will receive pride of place.

Rifle Paper Co. is a stationery and gift brand based in Winter Park, Florida founded and owned by husband and wife team, Anna and Nathan Bond. The company officially launched via in November 2009 and what began as a small business based out of Anna and Nathan's garage apartment has quickly grown into an international brand over the last four and a half years.

All of Rifle's paper products are printed in the USA and assembled by hand. Rifle Paper Company uses FSC certified paper stocks and environmentally responsible printers, ensuring that sustainability is at the heart of everything that they produce.

The company has recently partnered with the amazing blogger Garance Dore, and if that wasn't enough to tempt you, Rifle also produces wallpaper, apparel and home goods!

Check out Rifle Paper Company for a range of amazing treats and gifts- whilst you do that, I'll be writing my thank you notes on my Pony Express Stationery set!

Lareymondie: Footwear for Guys and Gals


Androgynous fashion continues to be a strong choice for many women. YSL’s ‘le smoking’ suit is as popular now as it was in the 1960s, and designers continue to look to androgyny for inspiration.

One of these designers is Maylis de Lacoste Lareymondie. Her range of bespoke loafers, boots and shoes is a hit with men and women alike, and people are flocking to her showroom in New York to get fitted.

Maylis started Lareymondie to create bespoke boots for women. As her business has expanded so has her line of unique creations. Since launching her line of loafers for men, Maylis is finding that women also want a pair!

The most popular styles are oxford or the tassel loafers, with customers ordering patinas including brown caramel, brown honey, and mahogany. A big part of the process is being able to customize the shoe. Customers can choose the color of the laces, the type of leather and even have their monogrammed engraved for all of time.

Bespoke shoes take five weeks to be made, and they are created in France to the highest standard of craftsmanship.

Maylis shares why she thinks her shoes are such a hit!

Why do you think women are so excited about the masculine style of shoe? 
There has been a real change of status in society, and these shoes are a new and pioneering way to assume your sex appeal and power.  Wearing flats is a break from 'tradition' when women had to wear heels to be seen. Today this is the opposite, and women in flats and a 'tomboy look' are much more remarkable because they attract, surprise, and create interest.

Where and how could you style these shoes? 
You can style a pair of Oxford, Derby with pretty much everything!  You can achieve a very tomboy look with a suit, and white shirt, or even a tuxedo! You can pair them with a mini skirt, or a long skirt.

I recently ordered my own pair of shoes from Lareymondie and I can’t wait to share them with you all! Stay tuned for the big reveal!


Discovering DC: Hillwood Estate, Museum & Gardens


On a sunny Saturday a few weeks ago I visited Hillwood Estate, Museum & Gardens. Considering I've lived, worked and visited DC loads of times, I had never taken a trip to this glorious estate located near Rock Creek Park!

Diplomat, socialite and philanthropist Marjorie Merriweather Post bought Hillwood in 1955 and soon decided her home would be a museum that would inspire and educate the public. Her northwest Washington, D.C. estate endowed the country with the most comprehensive collection of Russian imperial art outside of Russia, a distinguished 18th-century French decorative art collection, and twenty-five acres of serene landscaped gardens and natural woodlands for all to enjoy. Hillwood opened as a public institution in 1977, and each room is more spectacular than the last.

My favourites? The Icon Room, filled with many Russian treasures, the Pavilion, where guests were treated to drinks and movies, and 1950s gem of a Kitchen and Pantry - it was like a film set!

Hillwood has a great gift shop and restaurant, and it's the perfect place to spend a Saturday afternoon looking at the Mansion's treasures before a leisurely stroll through the wonderful gardens and orchid house.

Hillwood Estate, Museum and Gardens is located at 4155 Linnean Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20008. For opening hours and further details click here.

Author's Own

White House Week


This week, President Obama welcomed Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe to Washington, D.C. for a State Visit.

The President and the Prime Minister visited the Lincoln Memorial, standing between the Gettysburg Address and Lincoln’s second inaugural address, to chat and reflect.

President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan visit the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., April 27, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)
Watch the arrival ceremony below:

The First Lady spent time with the Prime Minister’s wife, First Lady Akie Abe, at Great Falls Elementary School in Great Falls, Virginia. There, the two First Ladies spoke with a group of students who are learning Japanese and studying Japanese culture.

First Lady Michelle Obama and First Lady Akie Abe of Japan students who lined the hallways at Great Falls Elementary School in Great Falls, Virginia, April 28, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

April through Instagram


Walking the cobbled streets of Old Town Alexandria | A friendly Welsh welcome home! | Amazing art at the Crosby Street Hotel | Saturday night guilty pleasure | Easter flowers on Fifth Avenue | My comfy new Tory Burch flats | Robin Wright and nail painting | Starry treats | South Wales Police horses

One Beat Designs Mlekoshi playground