A Necklace Guide

There are so many gorgeous necklaces available on the market of various lengths, thicknesses and styles that it can be a minefield to pick what would look right with certain outfits.  Like hairstyles and clothes, necklaces to a certain extent, need to suit your face and neck shape too. The different chain lengths can also be baffling – where should a 32″ chain finish on the chest as opposed to a 20″ for example.  So here’s a nice, simple and invaluable necklace guide to help make choosing that necklace easier:

Courtesy of: Alight
Linda x
Thanks to Alight for permission to publish the necklace infograph.

 

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An Interview With Anjalee & Arjun Kapoor

New Delhi, Mumbai, Hong Kong …. and now East Shopping Centre in London  – Anjalee & Arjun Kapoor is one of India’s leading couture brands and since opening their first UK boutique in London in June 2015 they have been looking forward to introducing fashion straight from the catwalks in India to the British Asian Market.  Not only is it their first UK boutique, but Anjalee & Arjun Kapoor are the first couturiers from India to have a stand alone store in the UK. Anjalee & Arjun Kapoor regularly dress A-list Bollywood celebrities like Bipasha Basu, Anushka Sharma, Kangana Ranaut, Katrina Kaif, Hema Malin, Mallika Sherawat, Lara Dutta – as well as some of India’s elite socialites. I caught up with the lovely Anjalee to find out more about her brand and her hopes for the brand’s influence in the UK.

Hi Anjalee and welcome!image

Hi! I’m Anjalee.  I am a perfectionist in everything I put my hands on. You probably won’t know this but…I love to paint (canvas) and Arjun has a great flare for interiors. Had he not been a designer for clothes, he would be designing homes. He is extremely houseproud and the little details in our house are his magical touch.

What inspired you to enter the world of fashion?

Because I was passionate about it, I have been creatively inclined since my childhood. I paint as well. I believe creativity cannot be restricted only to one medium. For me, designing clothes is like nurturing my child; step by step and putting in my best. Playing with colours comes naturally to me, and putting a mix and match in and styling the silhouettes gives me a lot of creative satisfaction.

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What attracted you to designing wedding outfits?

My mindset was always fascinated on effective artwork. I love to choose different article themes every season and interpreting them my way on the garments. Rich ornamentation, vibrant colour mixes, mix and match of fabrics, styling the garments – all leads to creating one of a kind couture garment. I love playing with the details that are present in every outfit of ours. So I guess our style mantra is more inclined towards occasion dressing.

Where do you get your inspiration from for your collections?

Season to season I look for different inspirations which I could incorporate into the collection. The Spring/Summer collection influence has been from the Persian architecture and culture. I have incorporated rich motive grids combined with a lot of layering techniques. My previous themes have been jamavar aria, Mughal Opera, Phantom of the Opera, etc.

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Who is the Anjalee and Arjun Kapoor customer?

The typical AAK girl is a glamorous girl with great body language, great carriage and the right attitude. She is flamboyant and wants to wear an impactful statement piece for the most important day of her life.

What is your definition of style?

Being glamorous and making our AAK girl stand out. Our garments have a strong signature look which we have followed. Since we started the label it has that zing factor which is a complete transformation when one wears it. We aspire to give that feel good factor to every AAK girl and guy.

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What do you consider is the perfect outfit?

We style a variety of outfits giving options to our clients and tailoring each look. Each outfit looks different on different body types, but as long as the outfit brings out the best in you, I would consider that particular ensemble as the perfect outfit.

When grooms and brides visit your studio in London, what would they find?

Stylish ensembles that create a strong statement when worn. Glamorous outfits with a lot of oomph!

What has been your biggest achievement to date?

Our standalone stores in different parts of the world. We are planning for more flagship stores in the coming future in other countries as well.

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What is your dream for the future?

I would like the AAK brand to become a sought after global brand with stores all around the world.

What will your next fashion challenge be?

To set up a western global couture line and have it available all around the world.

What do you predict would be the bridal look for the next season?

Lots of interesting drapes over their lehengas, (skirts) fusion concepts for pre-wedding functions, lots of floral ideas in ornamentations, layered styles in anarkalis, mughale styles for the grooms on the wedding day.

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What difference do you find in brides overseas for example, UK and Indian brides?

The Indian Brides in India are more experimental in the silhouettes, colours and concepts. They are willing to try newer looks. The Brides in UK are more traditional in their dressing and love to stick to conventional colours for their wedding day.

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You can find the Anjalee & Arjun Kapoor studio in London’s East Shopping Centre, Green Street, London E7.

You can also follow Anjalee & Arjun Kapoor on Twitter :

@Anjalleekapoor

@ AAKapoorLondon

For details of East Shopping Centre, check out my blogpost HERE.

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Thank you for chatting to me Anjalee and those dresses are absolutely exquisite. A friend of mine got married a few years ago in a gorgeous red taffeta and black lace wedding dress – she looked stunning. Did you get married or are you getting married in a dress/outfit that isn’t in the conventional colours?  Do tell & share your stories…

Linda x

All photos published with kind permission from Anjalee & Arjun Kapoor.

 

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An Interview With Boutique 11

“Real Clothes For Real Ladies” is the mantra of my guest this week.  Penny owns Boutique 11, a store located in a busy suburb of Nottingham. Apart from her obvious passion for fashion, Penny makes sure that her mantra is always adhered to and with fortnightly stock change, regular ladies nights/instore events and a monthly customer prize draw – this little store is making big waves. I caught up with the lovely Penny to find out more….image

Hi! I’m Penny Britton..I have as long as I can remember LOVED fashion! Looking at it in magazines feeling and touching it and of course wearing it.

What inspired you to open a boutique?

I have been in the fashion industry on and off for about 15 years. I think I really began to realise that I had a real flare for connecting with other ladies when I was the fashion advisor at John Lewis in Nottingham. Ladies would make an appointment to see me for either that special outfit, an everyday outfit or just fed up of their wardrobes or their look – they were looking for inspiration.

What do you like best about having a boutique?

What I like best….the look that my customers have on their faces when they have found something they look lovely in..(sounds corny doesn’t it? but I really mean it).I love choosing and buying all my own stock.When I go buying I am like a child in a candy store every time!

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When picking stock for your boutique, do you go by the latest trends/colours, customer requests, popular styles, your own tastes or bits of all those?

I have a great variety of labelled fashion and stock fashion which I get directly from Italy/France. Personally I love colour and in the spring & summer months when I can buy colour,  I certainly do. It makes me happy when ladies come into Boutique 11 and comment on how pretty all the lovely colours are that they have to choose from .I always pride myself on the fact that neither age nor size is an issue in Boutique 11 – my size and price range is fab..

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When a customer visits your boutique, what would they experience?

My advertising line is “real clothes for real ladies”. My customers really do range from size 6 to 26 and ages early 30 to 90. I have been told that “I have funked up the ladies in my area”!  The secret I think, is to buy the correct shape for you, of course, in a colour which suits your colouring but most importantly, when you look in that changing room mirror that you are smiling. Another thing we at Boutique 11 pride ourselves on is honesty.No one will go out of my boutique with anything which does not look FABULOUS on them. I am also being told over and over again ..we love coming here Penny, because you will always say if it’s not quite right and never try and sell us something for the sake of making a sale.

What famous lady would you like to see visit your boutique?

Mary Portas of course..she doesn’t need any fashion advice from us but I know I would be very proud of the service she would have received and gone away with smile.

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Where did you get the inspiration for Ladies evenings from?

Well it’s just an excuse for a girlie night really..I fill the boutique with FABULOUS stock, offer my ladies something else – makeup artist, facials, nails done – anything ladylike really and of course, get in some bubbly…what else does a lady need? They are very successful and getting busier each time.

You hold regular monthly prize draws for your customers spending £100 or more at your boutique.  How has that been received by your customers?

My latest competition is going very well, it encourages the ladies to spend while giving something lovely back. It’s a great talking point.

Anything else planned for this year?

I have been invited to put on fashion shows at two ladies charity lunches, one was in July and one in November. A ladies “afternoon tea party with fashion” in August. I have Summer, Autumn, Winter open evenings in Boutique 11 in the diary for the rest of the year!

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Have you any favourite shops/online sites?

My favourite shop is Boutique 11 for sure… I love Mint Velvet label and James Lakeland fashion. Anything a little quirky really. I tend to shop in other small boutiques selling something a little different from the high street.

Favourite colour?

I really don’t have a favourite. You will find every single colour out there in my wardrobe from bright blue to acid green to the palest pink and lots of white linen for the summer. I think I do have a bit of a linen fetish!

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You can find out more about Boutique 11 by going to their website  www.boutique11.co.uk their facebook page  http://facebook.com/nottinghamboutique11

Thanks very much for chatting to me Penny – I’ll be sure to pop in when I’m next in Nottingham.  Although I love shopping online, boutiques like Boutique 11 make it fun to spend an hour or two looking through stock, hunting out those gems and what a fab way to spend a girly night out at a ladies shopping and pamper night!  Do you agree readers? What are your likes/dislikes about shopping in boutiques as opposed to online? Do tell!

Linda x

Photo Credits:  All photographs have been published with kind permission from Boutique 11.

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Dispatches From The Kabul Cafe

This week I’m so excited to be talking to Canadian journalist & foreign correspondent, Heidi Kingstone… about her work, life, shoe passion and her fab book about her encounters when based in Kabul in 2007/2008 – “Dispatches From The Kabul Cafe”.  Hi Heidi…image

Hi!  My name is Heidi, and I’ve been a journalist all my life.  I have finally written my first book, Dispatches from the Kabul Cafe, which is about expat life in Kabul, a place known as the ‘Kabubble’. I like to think of it as the Afghan version of the TV series Indian Summers. I spent 18-months living and working there and discovered an amazing world. The country is fantastically beautiful, and life is complex and difficult, a place where so many people have felt drawn in order to help, and Dispatches is about the adrenalin-fuelled excitement of living on the edge of someone else’s war. You don’t have to like politics, be interested in war or even Afghanistan. Dispatches is a series of stories, based fairly accurately on real-life, on things that happened to me or my friends, where you can find answers to questions like: Where can you buy 913 Kalashnikovs? How do you tell a friend her expat love is never coming back?What’s it like to date a mercenary?

Your book, Dispatches From The Kabul Cafe, published by Advance Editions, was launched in May 2015. It is based on your encounters and interviews with idealists, gunrunners, warlords, generals, power-brokers, fashionistas and ordinary women over a period of 4 years from 2007 when you lived and worked in Afghanistan. Described by many to be a travel book written in the style of traditional 19th/20th travel writers like Fielding, Sterne, Morris, Thesiger and Kinglake – and I agree, it is an armchair traveller’s literature delight! What or who inspired you to write your experiences in this way?

As usual, it was a series of events, triggered by my father, a psychiatrist, who suggested I write about daily life in Afghanistan. By this point, the world was suffering from information overload on the military and political front and on the tragedy of women’s lives, but there were still other aspects that I felt hadn’t been covered. Daily life in the ‘Kabubble’ fascinated me and rounded out the picture. As a result, the book grew organically into what it is, which is a series of vignettes based fairly accurately on real life. I wanted to write something atmospheric that gave the reader a sense of what it was like to be in this adrenalin-fuelled world where truth is stranger than fiction. Even though my book is nothing like his, I loved Graham Greene’s The Quiet American, which was about Vietnam during the French Indochina War in the 50s. It was a turbulent and historic period, and the louche expat scene of foreign correspondents, women, drugs and diplomacy was my inspiration. In The Karen Woo Story, you get some sense of that.

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During those years, you have witnessed women as heroines, as victims, as freeloaders, as rivals. The cast of characters in the book include Hasina, the revolutionary in Gucci sunglasses; and Ariana, who was desperate to leave Kabul and had high hopes that Brian could help her! I loved meeting these people via your book and didn’t envy your role at times (especially in Ariana’s case). Which person or incident proved most challenging or disturbed you the most?

It’s a tough call, but on balance I would say, Hasina, the girl with Gucci glasses. I liked her from the moment I met her, and she never ceased to impress me. I loved her unbound spirit and her intelligence, her openness, fearlessness, passion and honesty, her love of life and her commitment to making her country a better place, particularly for women. Violence against women is endemic in Afghanistan, and women lead tough lives and challenging the system is a Herculean task. But she confounded all the stereotypes we have of Afghan women or certainly the view I had that all women were meek and mild and victimised. I loved the stories Hasina would share with me about her family and experiences, she opened a window onto another Afghanistan. She is part of that exciting new generation of Afghans who are educated, modern and worldly, who are impressive people, and would be wherever they were. I was sorry to lose touch with her, and I think of her often, especially the times we would sit at Flower Street Cafe together drinking coffee, which we both loved. We also talked under the pomegranate tree in the garden of the house I rented about life and love and curtains, and, of course, her Gucci glasses.

One reviewer said “only Heidi would wander around Kabul in stilettos and lip-gloss”. I like your style but I’m sure it was a case of head covering and baggy clothes for most of the time. Despite the hardships, rules and nature of Afghanistan – what are your fondest memories of the place?

That was a quote from my brilliant friend Kate Fox, who wrote Watching the English, and she’s right. I did wear baggy clothes and cover my head, wear lip-gloss and stilettos. Another friend nicknamed me Heidi High Heels because of my steely determination to wear nice shoes despite the mud and potholes and the virtually impossible task of walking in anything but flat, sturdy shoes. I have so many fantastic memories, and it was one of the reasons I wrote the book, to preserve and share them. Like most women, I covered my head, but the scarf was almost always loosely wrapped, and luckily there were beautiful scarves made by Afghan women, which I still have and cherish. I went to the north of the country and saw women, who were involved in a silk project, do everything from nurturing the worms to spinning the silk.

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I was blown away by how beautiful Afghanistan is, it is incredible, and one of the most breath-taking places I have ever seen was Lake Band-e-Amir, the blue colour of the water, the jagged landscape, and walking through the ice-cold water which froze my bare feet. Particularly in the spring and summer, I would love to hear the sound of the ice cream man as he rang the bell and pushed his cart through the streets. And just like everywhere else, little kids would run out to buy ice lollies. I also loved to see the balloon sellers walking the streets. On one of the many times I went to Chicken Street, the main shopping drag in the capital, I sat with a carpet seller, who brought out a jar of raisins and nuts that had been marinated in a jar. He dug a spoon into the mixture and fed me a mouthful, it was delicious, unexpected, and I have to say, a little unnerving.

You have written for Britain’s leading publications covering assignments to do with disease & poverty from Mali to Sierra Leone; life in Darfur; and water wars between Palestine and Israel. You have written extensively about your travels in Iraq & Kurdistan, and you were commissioned by Canada’s National Post to write a 4 post series on the “Worst Places In The World”. Out of all the places you’ve visited, where was the worst place? And what place really surprised you and was better/ nicer than you had previously thought?

I only spent a few days in the Democratic Republic of Congo, but it was magnificent. They say about the country that God gave it everything, diamonds, beauty, water, natural resources and more, but never peace.I fell in love with African masks in Rwanda and the DRC. DRC has a long and bloody history, yet it is such a beautiful country, with so much potential, which always seems to be the case – beauty and brutality. I remember wanting to photograph a woman who balanced a plastic container of odd shoes on her head. Her face had a hardness to it, and she turned away, making it clear she wanted me to stop. I understood her reaction, I would feel the same. Life is hard in places like Goma, and people are ingenious in finding ways to survive. I never forget how lucky I am to live in the UK and come from Canada. Certainly, our countries are far from perfect, but easier in terms of health care, education, standard of living, freedom, equality, tolerance – and peace and security.

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Growing up had you always had in mind to be a journalist/author/foreign correspondent or did you fantasise about being somebody completely different?

I started off wanting to be an archeologist as I have always been fascinated by different people and far off lands. Being a journalist combined my passion for telling stories about people and places, but it happened by pure serendipity. I went to see the editor of a magazine in Toronto about something totally unrelated and she asked me to write an article – on accessories – and I knew from the first word I wrote that I had found what I wanted to do. Over time, my career moved in the direction I had hoped it would.

What sort of book genre do you like reading? Favourite books or authors?

So many! Except for science fiction of which I am not a fan, I have fairly catholic tastes. I love novels because you can just get lost in them, but also read a lot of non-fiction. In both Donna Tart’s The Goldfinch and Vikram Seth’s A Suitable Boy, I have finished the books wanting more and feeling as if I had made new friends. In a Suitable Boy I felt like I could just knock on the door of one of those houses and join in the with family. That was the effect I wanted with Dispatches from the Kabul Cafe, that when you read it, you would feel as if you were living those experiences. I have been going through a long Indian writers phase, the books are incredibly powerful. It started with Indian-born Canadian writer Rohinton Mistry’s A Fine Balance, and subsequently Jhumpa Lahiri’s The Lowland and The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga. They are tragic, profound, and beautiful, and show how corrupt and evil people and governments can be.I also read a lot of books about Afghanistan – some of my favourites have been Frank Ledwidge’s Losing Small Wars, Rodric Braithwaite’s Afghansty and Sherard Cowper-Coles Cables from Kabul. I loved The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein too. I can thank my mother who is excellent at recommending books for me to read.

Although you’ve been to quite a few places in the world – what place/country holds the top position on your bucket list now as the place you most would like to visit, either for work or pleasure? What has been your favourite destination visited so far?

I would hop on a plane to travel just about anywhere. I have always wanted to go to Antartica. I find its serene beauty compelling – and I love penguins. And the South Pacific, inspired by Paul Gaugin’s paintings. When I was growing up I always wanted to visit Burkino Faso, and attend the Ouagadougou film festival. Oscar Niemeyer is one of my favourite architects so Brasilia is on my list, too. Every time I go to a new country, I think I need to move there immediately. But Africa as a continent is where my heart is and southern Africa in particular. Out in the bush in Botswana, Namibia or South Africa would come top of my list. Being immersed in the landscape and watching the animals makes me happy and is possibly where I am most at peace. I’m not a very spiritual person but I feel something profound when I am there. My first trip was a remarkable five-day bush walk with my then boyfriend, who was South African, through the Umfolozi, led by Ian Player. He was a great conservationist who helped save the white rhino, and his trekker Mqubo. 

What are your 5 beauty, fashion or footwear essentials that you always pack with you from the UK when travelling to your assignments?

Flip flops are an essential, I never go anywhere without them. I am addicted to Havaianas. A pair of sunglasses because you never know when you are going to need to add that air of mystery or hide behind shades. They are always glamorous – and useful. I have learned to travel with jeans just in case the weather suddenly shifted. You can dress they up or down. I also bought a silk sleeping bag case in Vietnam that rolls up into a small ball. It’s light and came in very handy when I was in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Either a pashmina or large cotton scarf. 

One reviewer quoted that you had “an eye for beauty and fashion in the most unlikely places”. In your travels, what has surprised you most in beauty and fashion terms when compared to the UK/Canada?

In India, it is of course the colours, the jewellery and the architecture, which are extraordinary. The legendary editor of Vogue, Diana Vreeland, said ‘pink is the navy blue of India’, and when you are there your eyes drown in colour and you get lost in the vibrancy and the mixture of patterns that surround you….and there is no black. In southern Africa, it’s just the opposite. The earth tones calm me. I love the mud cloths and colours that blend into the landscape, and the geometric designs. 

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Personal now – what outfits and shoes would you normally be found wearing?

I absolutely love the fashion this year, and amongst other things I am addicted to are jumpsuits – I have three – one in denim by Diesel, which I think is quite sexy as it’s fitted, a silk one by Joie that I bought in Dubai that is casual and elegant, and a more sophisticated one also by Joie, which is more grown up and good for day or evening. This winter I lived in Stuart Weiztman’s over the knee suede boots and McQueen’s high heeled ankle boots. My nude colour Louboutins see me through just about everything.

Do you have any favourite shops or online sites ?

I love mixing and matching from high-end to high street, which means that there are endless and enormous opportunities! I seem to go in phases and I love Joie, they seem to cut for my shape, which makes all the difference. There are a couple of shops locally that I go to, and then of course Selfridge’s as it’s sadly not too far from where I live. And so many more!

What’s next on your clothes/shoe wish list?

Every day I make the same vow: No more shopping. But it doesn’t last, and London is possibly the best place in the world to shop, good if you have discipline, not so good if you are a shopaholic. I bought a pair of mukluks a few years ago back in Toronto to wear in the winter and navigate the ice and snow. When I put them on I remember the sensation of such cosiness and luxury, I never realised shoes could be comfortable! There was a pair of black shoes that I saw a few times on celebrities in various magazines this season. They had an elegant high heel, a pointy toe, and three sexy straps that wrapped around the foot and ankle, and I absolutely loved them. As I was determined, with dubious success, to curtail my footwear intake I didn’t seek them out but I did make a mental pact with myself: If I ever saw them I would buy them. Like so many promises that we make to ourselves, it was hardly written In stone. So there I was in Vienna in June, taking in the sites between stops for Sacher Torte, Wiener Schnitzel and coffee with whipped cream, when I decided I needed some respite and I detoured into a side street near the famous Viennese landmark, St Stephen’s cathedral, where lo and behold there was a pretty unprepossessing shoe shop. With temperatures soaring above 30C degrees, and unable to resist temptation, I opened the shop door to a blast of cool air, and there, displayed on a plinth right in front of me, were the Gianvito Rossi shoes that I had lusted after. And, of course, not someone to break a promise, even if it was to myself, I tried them on. They were a perfect fit, possibly even comfortable, more fabulous in real life than on the pages of a glossy magazine, and in a moment Cinderella transformed into a princess.

Boots or Shoes? 

As I look in my cupboard and see all the boots and shoes that I love, it’s a tough choice. Boots can be incredibly sexy but if I had to choose I think it would have to be shoes. I’m a sucker for stilettos. 

Links you would like to share e.g. website/facebook/twitter etc so that readers of the blog can learn more about you and your book.

www.HeidiKingstone.com

my Facebook page is Heidi Kingstone

Twitter @superlotuslane

instagram @superlotuslane

Thanks Heidi and I so love those new Gianvito Rossi shoes! Don’t know if I’d brave heels along pot holed streets but I certainly would rock the sunglasses and lipgloss look! Readers, where’s the strangest/unusual place you’ve worn heels? Do tell!

Linda x

Photo Credits:  Heidi Kingstone; Mina Sharif 

 

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An Interview With The Blackout Project

Preston, UK – the town may not be known as the centre of film making but this year a collaborative, independent feature film is being not only filmed in Preston, but it is based in Preston using creative and enthusiastic people from that area.  Called “The Blackout”, the film centres around 6 characters going about their everyday lives when there is a total power blackout…. a modern-day apocalypse almost…it sounds intriguing anyway! I caught up with the lovely Su Moffat, who is heading The Blackout Project, to find out more…image

Hi! My name is Su Moffat and I’m a freelance screenwriter based in Preston, Lancashire. I’m currently working on a feature film project here in Preston, The Blackout.

What was the inspiration behind the project?

The project is the brainchild of our Coordinating Director Alan Livesey. Alan has a great deal of experience in short film making, but was keen to move into feature films. Features, however, are notoriously huge beasts to wrangle and incredibly costly, so The Blackout Film Project is Alan’s way to approach this challenge. By building several production crews, each responsible for producing a short story within The Blackout, we are sharing the workload and producing our feature film in a fraction of the time, and for a fraction of the cost, of an ordinary independent feature film.

What is the goal of the project?

The goal of the project is to produce a multi-narrative (think Love Actually) feature film, from scratch, in 12 months. We’re relying on our crew and cast to contribute their time and we’re pulling resources from our wider community.

It is quite a costly and time-consuming challenge – how do you hope to achieve your goal?

Our writers and crew have given their time for free to get us to this point in pre-production. We’re raising funds to pay towards transport, locations and catering for our actors by holding monthly film screenings here in Preston (check out Facebook or Twitter for details BlackoutFilmProject, @FilmBlackout). This gives us a small monthly income without which we would have no budget at all.

Can you tell us a little bit about the film, The Blackout?

The story of The Blackout revolves around the first 12 hours of a complete power blackout; no electricity; no motorized transport; no telephones, and how the people of a small city will cope without the luxuries of modern living. The film concentrates on six individual stories and shows us how dependent we’ve become on technology and how little we’re prepared to live without them.

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Any particular reason why the film and project are based around Preston? Has the support you’ve received so far exceeded your expectation?

The film itself is located around Preston because this is where most of the crew live and where most of our resources are. We set out to show that this kind of film doesn’t need to be all ‘government conspiracy and military intervention’ – if The Blackout happened in real life, people in smaller areas will simply have to get on with it alone. And that’s where we think the more interesting stories lie. We’ve had an overwhelming response from our community towards this project. We’ve had offers of help from junior football teams, scout troops, dancers, catering companies… the list goes on… and it’s really humbling to hear so many people excited to get involved. We’ve had tremendous support from local bloggers, ‘Blog Preston’, coverage in the Lancashire Evening Post and radio coverage from BBC Radio Lancashire and Preston FM. It’s an amazing project to be involved in and I’m so pleased I got involved at the beginning!

When do you hope the film will be finished & released?

We’re shooting the film in sections over June and July, then the post-production editing will happen over the summer. We’ll then be holding a red-carpet preview screening in November in Preston before the film heads over to the film festival circuit.

Personal now – what outfits and shoes would you normally be found wearing?

Hmm, outfits and shoes… I’d love to throw some designer names around, but I’m a jeans and Uggs/Converse girl really. I do like Radley bags though and I once bought a pair of Kurt Geiger boots that I love but have never worn!

When you get a chance, what genre of films do you like to watch? Any favourites?

I don’t think I have a specific genre of film that I enjoy. As a writer I’m all about the story, but I’m learning to appreciate film from an aesthetic point of view now too. I don’t honestly think I could choose a favourite but we recently watched ‘Birdman’ – at our first fundraising evening – it’s fabulously bonkers, I love the dialogue and it’s beautiful to look at, so that’s probably one I’d recommend.

Do you have any favourite shops or online sites?

Despite living in Preston we regularly go shopping in Newcastle and my favourite department store up there is Fenwicks. They have an outstanding selection of everything, from shoes to food! It’s shopping heaven! I also like Hollister, even though it’s too dark to see anything, but it smells great!

What’s next on your clothes/shoes/bag wishlist?

I’m after a pair of white Converse for the summer and I’m expanding my skirts wardrobe – I really like that maxi length skirts are back in. I also need another cross-body bag from Radley – anything in blue – hint, hint!

Boots Or Shoes?

Boots September – April, shoes/bare feet May-August. Why? ‘Cos I always have done?!

For further information:

www.blackoutfilmproject.com
@FilmBlackout

 

Thanks so much Su for taking time out to talk to us and I look forward to seeing the film once it’s released.  It’s quite exciting watching a film being made – the BBC filmed the opening scenes of their TV film Great Expectations around my village and surrounding marshes. It was great fun sitting on the sea wall watching the film being acted then watching it evolve months later as a finished film on TV.  Have any readers got any film stories they’d like to share? Do tell!

Linda x

All photos have been published with kind permission from Su Moffat and The Blackout Project.

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An Interview With Pretty Be Online

Online meets beauty this week as I chat with qualified nail technician Julie Allseybrook, brainchild of the innovative online promotional tool for professionals in the hair, beauty and well-being industries – PrettyBeOnline. Great news for customers too as many services are listed to satisfy all your beauty needs.  Let us welcome Julie onto the blog to reveal more …Hi Julie!image

Hi there, I’m Julie Allseybrook the founder of Pretty Be Online, I’m 39 years old and have a little boy who’s 5.

What was the inspiration behind Pretty Be Online?

The inspiration came from when I qualified as a nail technician and I was looking for a cost-effective place to advertise my business online. It seemed that everywhere I looked the available platforms weren’t particularly user-friendly and the popular ones seemed to charge an arm and a leg for using their facilities. They weren’t particularly nice to look at either so I started to do a bit more research into how I could solve the problem of pricing and make it more appealing for customers to browse through. It also struck me that while I was searching for what’s available, there wasn’t anywhere where everything was under one roof for the Beauty, Wellbeing & Fitness Industries so I wanted to combine that too.

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There are a few beauty websites and apps that combine services, so what makes Pretty Be Online so appealing to businesses and to customers?

Pretty Be Online works in a completely different way to what’s available at the moment, making it particularly easy for customers to do a quick price check and distance finder from the businesses advertising on there. When looking at a particular advert, it also brings up all the other adverts that business has listed, making it very easy to see what else is available instead of trawling through the static profiles like on other platforms. From a business point of view, as well as a business profile, we allow unlimited adverts in any categories that they deem suitable to include special offers & gift vouchers. We charge a one-off fee of £20 a month so have no hidden commission fees which usually end up costing small businesses. Their profile is also 100% in their control meaning they can remove or archive adverts as they please, re-activate them when they choose. There is a free app available too so they can manage their account on the go just as they would at a desktop. We provide links to websites, email and social media platforms and have an optional booking request form which can be activated should they wish which doesn’t tie them into an online booking system but offers a little bit extra. We also have a keyword facility in the adverts which allow businesses to put in what they feel is suitable which in turn helps to increase the SEO.
Another thing that Pretty Be prides itself on is that we don’t allow free listings on there. We are here to bring the standards back up in these particular industries and feel like if we offered free listings, it would have under qualified businesses on there. I’ve seen it all too often where profiles have selfies as business logos and if you are serious about your business, you wouldn’t want to be listed next to those. We treat all businesses the same who choose to advertise with us which means no premium listings to push them out of the way, it’s worked purely on postcode.
As we cover lots of services that fall under the umbrella of the Beauty, Wellbeing & Fitness industries, we find that customers will have a browse through the different categories. This means that they usually end up looking at treatments/services they weren’t originally looking for meaning more exposure for businesses.

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What type of treatments seem to be most popular currently amongst advertisers?

Popular listings include Reiki, Training Courses and Holistic Treatments. Popularity is also rising for Coaches who offer things such as NLP.

You are a qualified nail technician and yet Pretty Be Online the website and your social media presence must take up a lot of your time. What job “hat” do you personally enjoy doing the most?

I’d have to say all aspects of Pretty Be Online, I just love it when I get positive feedback as it makes me feel like I am fighting the corner for small and medium-sized businesses.

Personal now – what outfits and shoes would you normally be found wearing?

I’m a sucker for jeans, I seem to live in them. I try to keep myself smart/casual so would pair these with a nice top and shoes or boots.

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When you get a chance to be pampered, what treatments do you like to indulge in? Any new treatments you haven’t experienced yet but would like to try?

I like to have facials or a massage. There are loads of new treatments I’d like to try – microdermabrasion and a vampire facial to name a couple.

Do you have any favourite shops or online sites ?

Not really, if I see anything I like, I’ll buy it regardless. I do love ASOS though purely for the catwalk facility on all their clothes. I think that’s brill!

What’s next on your clothes/shoe/ bag wish list?

I want to get myself a nice designer handbag like a classic Mulberry or something.

Boots or Shoes? 

I prefer boots as there are so many nice ones available. I do like shoes but mainly heels which I’m not very good at wearing anymore so I stick to wedges.

Links you would like to share e.g. website/facebook/twitter etc so that readers can find out more about Pretty Be Online

You can find more information about PB Online at www.prettybeonline.co.uk or via our fb page www.facebook.com/prettybeonline or twitter www.twitter.com/prettybeonline

Thank you Julie, and what a fantastic idea!  Ummm…vampire facial.. that leaves an interesting vision in my mind! Dear readers, do you like being pampered? What service do you enjoy and what would you like to try? Do tell! 

Linda x

Photo Credits: Photos of Julie & the logo were published with kind permission of Julie Allseybrook.  Other photos: Linda Hobden.

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An Interview With Shannon Kyle – Ghostwriter

My guest this week is a lady you probably have not heard of and yet you may have read her books or heard of the books she’s ghostwritten. Out of the 10 books she’s ghostwritten, 4 have been Sunday Times bestsellers and her first book, “Forever In My Heart” by Jade Goody, sold over 100,ooo copies and was No 1 bestseller in 2009.  I caught up with Shannon Kyle recently to discover what it is like to be a ghostwriter ….Hi Shannon and welcome….image

Lovely to meet you. I am Shannon Kyle, a ghostwriter and journalist.

To date, you have ghostwritten 10 books, including 4 Sunday Times bestsellers for both celebrities and ordinary people with extraordinary stories. That is quite an achievement! What inspired you to become a ghostwriter?

I fell into it by accident. I had worked as a journalist for many years on the tabloids and women’s weekly magazines and was asked to write Jade Goody’s last autobiography, Forever in My Heart. At first Harper Collins were not altogether convinced I should as I’d never written a book before, but thankfully they decided to give me a whirl.

You are also a talented freelance journalist writing true life stories for publications such as Take A Break, Prima, Woman’s Own, The Guardian, The Mirror, Daily Express and Sunday People for over 15 years. Growing up, what were your career ambitions? Did they resemble your careers as a journalist and ghostwriter or did you want to be something totally different?

When I was 15, I won a competition in a local newspaper, The Medway Messenger, to write a ‘letter to the future’ which was then buried in a time capsule under a building site, I can’t actually recall where now! The prize was to have the letter printed, £50 and a trip in a helicopter over the building site. I was so thrilled to read my words in print  I decided I’d wanted to be a journalist one day.

As a child what books did you enjoy reading? What genre of books do you enjoy reading now?

As a child I loved reading autobiographies, like Roald Dahl’s Boy-Tales of Childhood and Going Solo, and Anne Frank’s diaries of course. At the time I loved reading ‘true stories’ as I knew events really happened. Today I love reading anything and everything. Recently I have finished Butterflies in November by Auður Ava Olafsdóttir. It’s a comic-noir novel set in Iceland I bought while on a short holiday there and it’s beautifully written and so funny. I’ve also loved Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey, a novel so incredible it just took my breath away. The last non-fiction book I read is Confessions of a Ghostwriter by Andrew Crofts, a very enjoyable take on the job of ghosting from one of the best in the business, that was insightful!

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Your first book as a ghostwriter was “Forever In My Heart” by Jade Goody that sold over 100,000 copies and was No1 bestseller in 2009. A fantastic start to your “ghostwriting” career but it must have been quite an emotional rollercoaster. What were the highlights and lowlights whilst working on the book alongside Jade and her family?

My own father died of bowel cancer (within two weeks of being diagnosed) just five months before I was asked to write this book. Cancer and grief were very much at the forefront of my mind so I was in a bit of a daze during the writing of Forever in My Heart. The absolute cruelty and unfairness of life was bought up so close, as Jade was only 27 and leaving two little boys behind who were her world. I felt it was a privilege to write this book and was under pressure too as it had to be written within three weeks! I had little time even to eat or sleep. What I took away was the love that surrounded her from her family and friends, and the incredible humour they all kept, including Jade, right till the end. A general low light was the senselessness of it all really. Dying while young is a very cruel senseless business, although through doing it publicly Jade highlighted cervical cancer and by doing this she saved many lives. Young women who wouldn’t have got tested otherwise came forward and had it done. She should also be remembered for that.

Your latest ghostwritten book, “The Race To Truth” by Emma O’Reilly was nominated for the Irish Sports Book Of The Year award 2014. Congratulations! When ghostwriting, do you have a hunch as to what makes a best seller?

Thank you! I don’t think anyone, even publishers know what will definitely make a best seller. One celebrity memoir I wrote was the life story a household name and garnered huge publicity and looked as if it would be a sure thing, but it didn’t sell particularly well. Then I’ve written a memoir of a girl who grew up in a modern day gypsy family and it reached number four on the Sunday Times bestseller list.. it’s so hard to tell. However I do trust my instincts on what makes a good story, I think it’s important to have a nose for that in this job!

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Have you ever had ambitions to write and publish your own book under your own name as author? If so, what book genre would you pick?

To date I have made two attempts to write a novel. The first one almost got bought by a big publisher but they pulled out at the last minute. I hope to one day. I hope to write something fictional for the women’s consumer market which is from the heart.

Hypothetically speaking, if you could pick to ‘ghostwrite’ the life story of any historical figure, who would you pick and why?

She isn’t historical yet, but I would love to do Yoko Ono’s autobiography. Being a huge Beatles fan I’d love to have done Linda McCartney’s book too, I identify with her as I’ve been a single mother living in a big city working in media, like she did in New York before she married Paul. I’d also love to interview Queen Elizabeth the First, and of course Anne Frank too.

What, in your opinion, are the best bits of being a ghostwriter? And, dare I say it, the downside?

Without a doubt the best bits is being able to get close to someone and ask them almost any question. I am always discreet and my authors need to be able to trust me. It’s a real privilege to hear people’s first hand stories. Being part of the process of writing a book from that first opening line to the end and seeing it in shops is also very rewarding.
The downside is editing and never quite knowing when the final manuscript is finally finished.

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Personal now – what outfits and shoes would you normally be found wearing?

I love Levis and Goldsign jeans. The latter are an American brand and rather pricey so I make them last but they’re so flattering and comfortable. I’ve often got a pair of Converse on, my favourite ones are all white ones bought in a vintage shop. When I am writing I usually wear anything comfortable, even jogging bottoms as I try and go out for a run every day. If I am going out, I have a few Fever of London dresses I absolutely love, but that’s only on a special occasion.

Do you have any favourite shops or online sites?

eBay is the place for bargains. I used to like Brandalley.com too, but try not to get tempted. ASOS is always good and my daughter quite often gets me to look on there for clothes for her. I have a favourite vintage shop in Camden, near where I live, it’s called The Thrift Shop. It’s tiny but a treasure trove of cool things.

What’s next on your clothes/shoe wish list?

I’ve been keeping an eye on eBay for a pair of Chanel sunglasses. I’m hoping for a proper pair a la Audrey Hepburn.

Boots or Shoes? 

I’ve been after a pair of good black leather over the knee high boots for a while, but I’ve yet to find the perfect pair. I’ve always been a fan of long black boots, they’re great in the winter time when it rains and you can wear them with jeans or skirts.

Links you would like to share e.g. website/facebook/twitter etc so that readers of the blog can learn more about you

www.shannonkyle.co.uk
www.facebook.com/shannonkylejournalist

Thank you Shannon for sharing with us just a little of your ghostwriting world and I hope you eventually get that novel of yours published! I think it must be interesting to ghostwrite the autobiography of a historical figure like Nell Gwyn or as you say, Shannon, Elizabeth I …. dear reader, which historical figure would you pick to shadow? Do tell!

Linda x

Photo Credits: Header Pic – published with kind permission from Shannon Kyle; Book Photos – Linda Hobden.

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An Interview With Cooper & Hill

Based in the lively district of Covent Garden in London, my guest on the blog this week is a manufacturer of quality leather bags with 25 years industry experience that have just launched their new online direct to consumer website. I caught up with George, co founder of Cooper & Hill, to find out more… Welcome George…image

Hi, I’m George Powell, 31, co founder and director of Cooper & Hill Ltd.

Cooper & Hill have now launched an online direct to consumer website offering a range of premium brand quality handmade leather bags at trade cost direct to the consumer. What was the reasoning behind the new launch?

The idea originally came from the manufacturing arm of Cooper & Hill challenging me with a question when I was a freelancer. They understood that retail is changing and consumers are becoming more aware and more demanding for something more unique to them. We realised there was a huge gap in the market to take the lead on bespoke requests to a national/global market provided we used modern ideas and technology to intelligently manage demand and stock control. Through the use of things like waiting lists, pre-order facilities and social media we found a way to make it reality. Once we understood we could achieve bespoke orders it blew the doors wide open on where we could take the business so we started with a new brand to grow it from the ground up. It’s been an incredible first few months and the direction of the company has evolved so much from the original idea of providing bespokeproducts. We now have the public through #CrowdDesign concept regularly helping us develop new products for Cooper & Hill and the birth of our own marketplace has opened the doors for leaders in trend setting for a wide range of niches to develop their own styles.

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You have a desire to make new bags with design requirements directed by the public via your #CrowdDesign initiative. Can you describe the scheme and how can someone take part?

We’ve actually successfully tested this with our first product now out on the website called the ‘Richmond Purse’ and a new Messenger Bag developed in March. The concept is fairly simple, we take the same  questions we would ask anyone who wants a bag manufacturing and pose them to the public for a couple of days. Through facebook we capture those responses and gather them for a poll. Our marketing team then collate those responses and fire them over in a consolidated brief to the designers who translate those requirements into drawings. Once we have the drawings we send them right back out to the public to vote for their favourite. Amazingly we then have a new product ready to be manufactured fully influenced by the public demand. We original tested this with our User Group who came up with the ‘Richmond Purse’ and the first public #CrowdDesign project was a huge success developing the first public led Messenger Bag.

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In addition to the handmade bags on offer, you are able to offer an unique bespoke service where the customer can specify shape/size/colour. What does this process entail?

It’s the same as the #CrowdDesign process but just a 1 to 1 interaction and more detailed questions. Anyone can raise a bespoke request on our website and tell us what they want, we respond with more detailed questions to make sure it is exactly what they want. Once we understand fully what a consumer wants we send it away to be designed and come back with a price of manufacture and visual drawings to paint the picture of what it could look like. If the consumer agrees we take payment and have it delivered to the consumer within 14 days typically. The process is actually quite simple and most bespoke requests come in around £140 to £300 each. Prices can vary dramatically however usually depending on material costs, so if you want a unique material that’s where costs can go up quickly.

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​I am loving the Abbey Tote, Bow Satchel Bag and Hatton Holdall styles that you offer. To date, what has been your most popular bag style ordered from your online site?

There is no clear favourite but if I had to say it would be the portfolios and briefcases we offer. The Baker Briefcase sold out very quickly so we had to drop that onto the waiting list for a while to ensure we made delivery time frames since they are made to order. The cause of the popularity for these types of bags I believe is due to the time taken to develop the functionality of the bags. We are still a relatively unknown as a brand so for particular styles it will take time to develop trust with the consumer market, but with these bags the quality markers are easy to see and the detailed functionality makes them useful. So I’m not too surprised these are the ones that have started off being popular, over time that may change as people come to see the quality behind our products and that we are here to stay.

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​You are based in Covent Garden in London – do you cater for overseas customers at all?

We can and we will, but we wanted to address the UK market first and get established here as a British Brand.

If you had the chance to design a handbag for any famous lady in the world (living or dead) who would you like to see flaunting your handbag?

All of them! We would like to see each famous lady and gentleman for that fact not flaunting a Cooper & Hill bag, but their own bag with their own label simply manufactured by Cooper & Hill. We aim to be that company gives you Your style so it would be fascinating to see what each celebrity truly wants as a bag in their own style rather than the ones given to them.

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​What colours seem to be most popular requested this season, and looking ahead to Autumn what do you hope or foresee as being the trendy colours or styles?

That is a hard question to answer for us I think, a lot of the styles we launched with are all year round classic styles. So there are a lot of blacks with strong contrasting inner linings such as red being requested. When it comes to a bespoke request people usually ignore the current trend and choose their favourite colours instead. Because we supply individual needs we tend not to focus on trends, after all you can request any colour at any time of the year so we leave it to the fashion and style professionals to make their trend statements and we listen to the public.

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Being in the bustling heart of cosmopolitan Covent Garden, it must be a hothouse for design inspiration. Are there any other locations that have also given you inspiration? Are there any cities/locations/countries you wouldn’t mind visiting for inspiration for future ranges?

When it comes to fashion the obvious choices are Paris and New York but I’m really just quoting out of other people’s book there. Our company’s position is to look towards the public’s opinion, we can’t do this so easily on our own so we look to the influencers in the market who have built up their own style and have their own niche – bloggers are a big part of that. Our position is that we are a manufacturer so we will facilitate other peoples designs and ensure they are top quality.

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Personal now – what outfits and shoes would you normally be found wearing?

Typically you will see me walking about in jeans and a shirt, I love suede leather boots or shoes and a fitted leather jacket.

Do you have any favourite shops or online sites? 

I am really into my simple designer classics, high quality cuts and luxury fabrics. I also like the basics from Uniqlo especially their cashmere and I have a lot of smart/casual Ralph Lauren in my wardrobe as their quality is incredible.

What’s next on your clothes/shoe wish list?

New boots, I have my eye on a pair of John Lobb Jodhpur Boots.

Boots or Shoes? 

I actually prefer shoes normally as they are a good versatile option which can be worn with jeans and trousers during day or night

Links you would like to share e.g. website/facebook etc so that readers can find out more about Cooper & Hill.

We run regular #CrowdDesign project on facebook so feel free to like our page or follow us on twitter so you don’t miss out on the next one.

cooperandhill.com
Facebook.com/cooperandhill
Twitter.com/cooperandhill

Thank you George for joining us on the blog and I wish you lots of success in the future! So, dear readers, if you fancy a bespoke bag/purse/portfolio then check out Cooper & Hill.  What colours/styles would you go for? Do tell! 

Linda x

All photos published with kind permission from Cooper & Hill.

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An Interview With Natalka Design

The newly elected children’s laureate, author and illustrator Chris Riddell, has recently stated that he wants to encourage children to indulge in drawing every day as well as reading.  It is an ethos most likely shared by my blog guest this week, Natalia Talkowska of Natalka Design.  She describes herself as being not only the Founder of Natalka Design but “Chief Visual Storyteller”… and she’s inspiring enough to be chosen by Microsoft to illustrate the benefits of the Microsoft Surface Pro in their recent advertising campaign (to watch the video, press HERE).  I caught up with Natalia recently to find out about her business plans, the Microsoft campaign, her drawing ethos and I got doodled too…. Join us….Hi Natalia!…image

Hi! I’m Natalia. I run Natalka Design and Doodleledo. The first is all about giving businesses more personality, playing with visual communication, refreshing consulting and show ways to liven events and meetings. Doodleledo is fun drawing get togethers for anyone that says ‘ I can’t draw’.

You have an unique business and one that you certainly excel in! When did you first discover your talent for drawing & doodling?

Since I was a kid I have always been drawing. My mum would say: give her a pen and a paper and she’s happy. Whilst studying I realised more that I can easily record real time conversations and ideas through pictures, not even knowing this could start my business one day. I just loved expressing my ideas as well as others through visuals. I remembered it much more than just text. I cry when I see an excel sheet, my brain can’t grasp it!

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You founded Natalka Design/Doodle-le-Do. Where did you get the inspiration from to start the companies?

Inspiration can hit anywhere and anytime. Anyone that’s very visual knows what I’m talking about. Natalka Design was born at the right time after years of not really loving my jobs to finally standing my own ground and using my skills to help others grow and communicate easier. Now we’re a full service agency working on several projects at a time globally. Our ethos #resisttheusual is something we all treat with care and respect. There are enough approaches and ways of making things happen the same way. We wanted to be different and always be surprising. That’s how Doodleledo was born…a new, different idea out of my observations on how people network in the same boring way and how they often tell me they can’t draw….Doodleledo is for small fun gatherings with drinks and nibbles for anyone that says ‘I can’t draw’. The idea is to leave with a bunch of new friends, not business cards. I must have done something right as now we’re a growing community – launching in 10 cities across the globe with partners and press behind us. We’ve got exciting plans for the future, so watch this space and come to one!

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Congratulations on being chosen by Microsoft to illustrate the benefits of the Microsoft Surface Pro in their YouTube video/advert. The video, apart from showing the tablet & its benefits, also showed ways that visual techniques could be used for events, team meetings and brainstorming. Was it a fun project to embark on?

Oh yes! Totally different fun experience, we had so many laughs and a great time filming in different locations. When the Microsoft team approached us, we knew it will be a great new adventure to embark on. The idea to film me working in natural environment came naturally after first meeting. We knew it would be a great way to showcase some inspiring new ways of working better and faster. Hopefully that came across.

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Powered by Natalka Design, Doodle-le-Do parties were started in London in 2014 and have since spread further afield to Dublin, Poland, Dordrecht, Milwaukee, Nairobi, Toronto, Atlanta, New York and Paris. In fact, more cities are being added as we speak! They sound great fun – can you describe a typical party?

This video will hopefully give you the best feel of it. To really experience it from within, come and join us in London or any other city from where they’re run. If there’s no Doodleledo in your city and you’d like to run your own, get in touch, let’s make it happen, it naturally grows from word of mouth and people seeing it’s a new, fun relaxing and creative way of meeting new friends. Best of all, you get to draw again, like when you were a kid, without thinking too much about it, just enjoying yourself!

Have you got any drawing/doodling tips?

Just do it – get a pencil and pen and observe things – start drawing. It’s like any muscle, it takes practice to develop it. I wasn’t straight away drawing as I do now. It’s such a great thing for your brain to keep it young, energised and on creative mode.

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You’ve worked in a variety of places from 10 Downing Street drawing the Prime Minister to a 5 Star hotel in Miami Beach speed drawing at a tech conference for 3,000 people. What has been your favourite assignment?

I don’t have one favourite as sometimes the most initmate work like visualising private thoughts by a CEO of a company and drawing their stories feels so inspiring, special and private, like they’re sharing a piece of themselves with you is way cooler than speed drawing at huge conference. So I’ve got a lot of favourites that we can’t show results of to the public as it’s just for the internal communication but one of my most favourite assignments would be connected with travelling to new places. That’s always an exciting  learning experience.

You have many fans of your artwork, including celebs such as Khloe Kardashian and Jonathan Ross. Is there any famous person (dead or alive) that you would love to meet to doodle?

Stephen Fry…we would definitely have a cool conversation. It may be possible though that I wouldn’t have enough paper to cover his thoughts! I wouldn’t mind meeting Beyonce and draw whilst she sings haha.

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Personal now – what outfits and shoes would you normally be found wearing?

I think it depends on my mood. For meetings or events you’ll see me wearing something comfy yet classy, a black nice jacket with a splash of colour underneath is always a yes but for everyday I like casual, chic, city girl kind of style.

Do you have any favourite shops or online sites ?

The list is long but I love Anthropologie, Revolve, Goodnight Macaroon, Asos and Free People for fashion; Other Stories for beauty products; and Intimissimi for underwear.

What’s next on your clothes/shoe wish list?

Oh, this is hard! So many!! I’m definitely a shoes person… so shoes and cute dresses are on my list.

Boots or Shoes?

Both…depends when and what’s the occasion!

Links you would like to share

Here you go:
Website:Natalka Design & Doodleledo
Twitter: @Natalka_Design #resisttheusual @Doodleledo #doodleledo
Instagram: @natalkadesign @doodleledo
Fb pages: Natalka Design Doodleledo

You can catch me here:
@NatiTal
hello@natalkadesign.com

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Wow, thanks for chatting to us Natalia -and I absolutely adore my doodle.  I love to doodle – especially pictures of shoes – but faces are not my forte!  Have I got any artistic doodler blog readers?  What do you love to doodle pictures of?  Do you think doodling could make your company meetings more entertaining? I love to hear your views so please get in touch & comment!

Linda x

All photos and videos  have been published with kind permission of Natalka Designs.

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