30 June 2013

styled in celia

COLLABORATION: Celia Birtwell x Uniqlo

A few months ago Uniqlo introduced another collaboration range with UK designer Celia Birtwell for their S/S 2013 collection. Versus the Lulu Guiness collaboration - which I clicked with instantly - this collaboration took me a while to decide whether I could see myself wear and style the collection. The prints are pretty distinct and the colours bold. Usually this would be my heartland but I think the choice completely confused me which explains why I ended up choosing the vivid-and-oh-so-bright grey as my chosen base colour! I opted for the twinkle dark grey pyjama pants (similar in navy here), grey stole C and pretty woman stole F (which I wore here) and because I took so long to pick I got them all in the sale - winning. The trousers (or is it a skirt... skousers!) are super soft and comfy - I was actually waiting for the right occasion to sport them somewhere nice where I could also lounge around. So the first time I wore this outfit was at Emilia and Cati's housewarming and it was just the perfect outfit to wear for a summery, chilled weekend. I am really happy with my choice as now I can add on any pop of colour I want to, like my favourite red boots I got for my last birthday :)

I really like it when high-street collaborates with designers (particularly those from homeground) because I feel I get exposed to brands I would never have thought of and that I am supporting british designers.  And the best part - I can also get my hands on designs I wouldn't be able to afford otherwise. All in all, everybody wins - no?

wearing | black leopard print crop top (+H&M), twinkle dark grey pyjama pants & grey stole (+UNIQLO UK), red boots (present) & RB3016 W0365 Clubmaster in ebony / arista (+Ray-Ban)

above photos thanks to Emilia

#styledincelia - if you want to see how others have styled the Celia Birtwell x Uniqlo pieces then check this
buy - check out and shop the collection in collaboration with Uniqlo here - there are still a few items left!
prints - check out all of Celia Birtwell's beautiful prints here - I've pulled out some of my favourites below

1. Bric a Brac | 2. Dandy | 3. Pretty Woman | 4. Sugar plum

28 June 2013


In a bid to put myself and my blog more "out there", I (wo)man-ed up and purchased a ticket to this year's Company magazine Blogging Forum. On Monday evening, having hauled myself across London after work, I arrived clammy (eww) and stressed as I was late (surprise surprise). Whilst attempting to find the entrance, I introduced myself and decided to join forces with the stylish killer-heels Katie who looked in the same boat. Entrance found, on entering the lobby we were greeted with Candy Kittens lollipops, a nice sweety surprise, and then ushered into a lecture theatre for the talk with some pink bubbly - this was slightly surreal as for a brief moment thoughts of exams came flooding back!

The panel included super-star-blogger Susie Bubble of Style Bubble blog, video blogger extraordinaire Rhiannon of fashionrocksmysock blog (also winner of Company's 2013 best new fashion blog), Oh My Love, Boohoo, Handpicked Media and Company editor Vic. After answering various questions on how to start a blog as well as tips on how to keep up and grow existing blogs, there was a lengthy Q&A session which just showed how popular and influential blogging has become in recent years. For me personally, the whole session highlighted the number of talented bloggers out there and listening to Susie's honest recount of her 7-year journey as a blogger made for a really inspiring session filled with both advice and a realistic view on how to have fun in the blogosphere.

Three key pieces of advice that stuck with me were:

1) The blogosphere is a noisy and crowded space - therefore content requires thought; make sure your blog standouts either through a niche interest and/or great writing // i.e. pictures of daily outfits week-in week-out isn't that different or interesting anymore. // "There's room for great voices in fashion content that don't just revolve around what you're wearing"  // "You should set up a blog because it's something you love and that you're passionate about"  // "Quality of content will keep people coming back over quantity"

2) Blog about something you love - blogging requires time and effort so if you blog about things you love then it will make it easier to keep up-to-date on a regular basis // i.e. if you're just starting your blog to make money, you won't. // "I went into blogging as a hobby. You can't get into it purely for money"  // "You should set up a blog because it's something you love and that you're passionate about"

3) Get social - the minute you start to blog, you are joining a community so make every effort to support fellow bloggers, comment on their content if you like it, reply to comments on your posts and just be sociable // i.e. engage in conversations but don't be pushy, rude or annoy others while you're trying to promote your blog // "Interact with people on twitter and network, rather than just pushing your links out all the time" // "Use hashtags on Twitter to reach a bigger audience and use Pinterest to showcase your inspiration"

All in all, a really interesting event. I'm glad I went for both the experience and the lovely (and oh so stylish) ladies I met as a result - Katie of Desperately Seeking Freedom, Yasmine of Yazmataz and Waj. All I wish was I had brought my camera (such an amateur)!

For any aspiring or current bloggers, I would recommend going to similar events as I think it allows you to have the space to remember and think about why you wanted to blog in the first place and how you can make the most out of your blogosphere experience. I definitely wish I'd had the advice when I first started but then again there's always time to improve :)

Thanks to all the speakers last night for a great forum, Company Mag for hosting (and for the goodie bag!) and Candy Kittens for the sweet treats!

Company's coverage: The night in pictures here | Some of the stylish attendees here
Other great reviews of the night: by Katie of Desperately Seeking Freedom | by Yasmine of Yazmataz

23 June 2013

the (nearly) rainbow

Sun, rain, sun, rain... I can't keep track. So here's a bunch of rainbows. That should add some fun and smiles into my week. The eagle-eyed amongst you will notice that there is a missing colour in my rainbow (ahem, violet). Two reasons why: I couldn't find a violet + I ran out of space. Let's hope attempt no.2 of the rainbow nails is relatively more successful :)

nails | [base] silver bullet (Rimmel London), [nearly rainbow] bright red, block orange (Barry M), electric yellow (Color Show by +Maybelline UK), mint green, blue moon (Barry M), trophy wife (50, Essie)

This weekend consisted of lots of good dancing and eating (surprise surprise) again. Today was my first time at Rivington Street Festival in East London, thanks to Simon and Chris. It's a free festival with live music and DJs from midday to 10pm, there are lots of independent stalls selling anything from clothes to cupcakes as well as photo booths and face painting. A really nice vibe overall and we even discovered a great (newly favourite) funky band called Stony Browder Jnr. We were so excited when we spotted the band packing up after their set from the window of The Diner (we needed a sit down!) and ran across the road for a photo opp. They decided that the best fan pic would be to kneel down and jazz hand at me - I was so embarrassed but it made me giggle so was awesome. Simon, Chris and I really hope to see them again soon as they seemed like a lovely bunch!

Favourite stalls-slash-discoveries | Bros With Fros [clothing], Kenza [accessories], the indulgent SUGAR plum [cakes]

Thanks for stopping by, hope to see you again soon :)

20 June 2013

graduate kicks

The other weekend, Raj, Asad and I stumbled on the Graduate Fashion Week 2013 at Earl's Court. We were just having a chilled Sunday, wandering around Fulham, about to go to the park when we noticed some very trendy young men and women walking towards the exhibition centre. As it was sunny, we decided to sit outside on the steps and do our favourite thing - people watch. I spotted some super shoes being sported and Asad had fun snapping away at the fashionistas and fashionistos (can I call them that?!). It was a very chilled, pleasant afternoon and definitely left me style inspired! Maybe next year I'll plan better and try to go to some of the actual shows :) Did you go? What did you think? Any hot new upcoming designers or trends I should watch out for? Would love to hear about it if you were lucky enough to attend!

If you are enjoying my blog, there are lots of ways to connect, follow and keep up-to-date with me:
Twitter | Instagram | Bloglovin' | Google+ | cathiaconnects@gmail.com

Hope to see you again soon!

all photos above by me

wearing | red shirt (+M&S), denim Jamie skinnies (+Topshop), blue flower scarf by Celia Birtwell (+UNIQLO UK), gold geo shape cut out collar necklace (+Accessorize), cherry jelly sandals (Primark)

photos of Raj & I above and below snaps thanks to +Asad

17 June 2013

sketchy style

It has been a long but great week. I wanted to take it easy over the weekend but ended up running around like usual - surprise surprise. I clearly can't stay still. The weekend started with a quick pop into Queen's Club to try and catch a centre court match - luckily, as a local area resident I was able to get in for free with a couple of friends after work and were able to get a few resell tickets for a bargain £15 (which would go to charity). We managed to catch the Tsonga vs. Kudla quarter final - great atmosphere and felt very lucky to have got in! Saturday then consisted of dance class and then straight onto afternoon tea with the girlies at the spectacular Sketch. It was my first time at Sketch and based on what I'd seen whilst stalking online, I wasn't disappointed. The tea itself was beautifully presented, tasty and the attention to detail was impressive. The venue was like nothing I'd ever visited before - if you want unique, this is the place to go. We ended up in the Gallery rather than the Glade (as advertised on the afternoon tea site) but were just as impressed with the decor. It was really different and fun - I would even recommend visiting the bathroom because the cubicles were eggs under a disco sky (yes, EGGS) which you will have to go and see to believe me! After tea, we headed over to Barrio Central for some happy hour fun before heading off to our various evening plans. It was a super afternoon with the girls and another lovely weekend :)

This was my "dancing to tea" outfit - I decided to stick to my trainers and leggings, swapped my t-shirt with a cute dress and added a blazer and statement necklace to make the outfit a little more smart. I've also been experimenting with my new, shorter hair and this style just seemed super easy to dance in as well as easily fixable in preparation for tea.

wearing | black dress (+H&M), black cut-out leggings (present), black heat-tech leggings (+UNIQLO UK), golden green blazer (Zara), leaf gold necklace (Camden market), yellow +Converse

outfit photos above thanks to Jamie & photos below by me and Rai

14 June 2013

poodles, peacocks and flowers

I wear scarves like there is no tomorrow. If I could own a cupboard full of scarves of every colour under the rainbow I would. English weather has made scarves my all year round best friend, meaning if you don't see a scarf around my neck you will very probably find one in my bag. Much to my delight, twitter has recently introduced me to Elizabeth Kate, the debut label of print designer Elizabeth Kate Bush. Everything is super cute, super fun and unlike anything else I've seen - it took me yonks to pick my top three but here they are. Ultimately, I think I may have to pay her little shop in Kingly Court a quick visit in the near future... I can hear my bank account crying already... :)

1. POODLES | £145


3. PEACOCK RED | £120

buy the range here
find the shop here
enjoy the Lookbook here 

9 June 2013

playing camouflage

What a lovely and chilled Sunday spent with my good buddy Optimus Funk aka Alexander Fabulous aka Adrian. As usual, it wasn't short of great chats, tasty food and new discoveries. We decided to head over to Brick Lane in East London to find something good to eat and stumbled on a warehouse full of delicious food from all over the world, from Ethiopian to Japanese to Thai. The smell itself was enough to win us over and we ended up snacking on tempura prawns, pork bun (or Cha Siu Bao for those who know your Catonese cuisine well!), momos (Tibetan dumplings) and jerk chicken with rice and peas, plantain and dumpling. It was SO good. If you're ever in the need for something new to try out and are feeling adventurous I would definitely recommend heading over - just follow the hoards of people and the delicious smells, you won't be disappointed and prices are great. On our travels, Adrian and I also discovered lots and lots of great street art - we even walked past live graffiti artists doing their thing. We found this fantastic mural on the way to Beyond Retro (a huge vintage shop warehouse), next to the cute, Paraguayan Morena bakery we eventually stopped in for a cup of coffee and cake. Inspired, we stopped, took some photos, jumped around like hyper children and here are the results! It was a really fun afternoon and I hope you all had a lovely weekend too :)

wearing | tiger jumper, black lace top, blue Jamie skinny jeans, tutu trench coat (all, +Topshop), leopard print creepers (Office), gold geo shape cut out collar necklace (+Accessorize)

photos above thanks to Alexander Fabulous & photos below by me (bar the one of me jumping!)

P.S. I discovered Adrian is a superhero today - check out the height in those jumps! Also, watch this space because I am trying to convince him to start up a style blog too as I think he has great personal style, loves clothes and trainers as much or more than I do and always looks fresh :)

alexander fabulous wears | t-shirt (musicjunky), jeans (+UNIQLO UK), black leather jacket (Zara), trainers (Asics)

7 June 2013

the spring sessions

All this sun is making me very happy. I've been meaning to put up these snaps from the first signs of sprummer (spring slash summer, the weather couldn't really decide) and my first picnic in my flat's communal garden. Lots of good snacks as per usual and I decided to wear a summery outfit which consists of one of my favourite vintage shop finds and my new sunnies I am obsessing over. There was a very strong fruit theme going on too with my strawberry-inspired nails. Plus I successfully managed to not wiggle my toes for longer than 2 seconds to get all fruit in one shot - woo! Enjoy :)

wearing | flower lace top (vintage shop in Paris), black Jamie skinnies (+Topshop), cherry jelly sandals (Primark), ivory floral appliqué sunglasses (+Urban Outfitters, online exclusive) & rafia clutch and shopper (presents from mum!)

nails | bright red, emerald green (Barry M), electric yellow (+Maybelline UK Color Show)

photos thanks to Jamie