The Life of Coco Chanel

What better day to look back on the fashion legend Coco Chanel’s life, than on her birthday. Today on August 19th, the French designer has passed away in 1971, long before I was even born. But somehow I’m obsessed with her life, designs and how she built an empire that is still going to this day, 47 years after her passing. If you don’t believe me, just ask my husband about all my Coco related books. She rewrote the fashion rule book and thanks to her, we don’t wear corsets and heavy dresses anymore and get to wear pants.

To celebrate Coco Chanel’s life, we look back at some of her very old but still stylish photos and I share some cool facts.

 

Coco Chanel with sculpture (1939). Photograph by George Hoyningen-Huene (American/Russian, 1900–1968).

Coco Chanel with sculpture (1939). Photograph by George Hoyningen-Huene.

Coco Chanel 1937

Coco Chanel hard at work. (1937)

1910 Chanel pictured playing golf in a rare early photograph. 1910

A rare early photo of Chanel playing Golf. (1910)

1925 Chanel at Chester Races with Hugh Grosvenor, the Duke of Westminster. Their romantic liaison lasted over a decade.

Chanel at Chester Races with Hugh Grosvenor, the Duke of Westminster. Their romantic affair lasted over a decade. (1925)

Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel and Boy Capel in front of Chanel's Deauville Boutique

Gabrielle Coco Chanel, Boy Capel and others in front of Chanel’s Deauville Boutique.

1928 Chanel boar hunting with Winston Churchill and his son Randolph in the forests near Dieppe, France.

Chanel out hunting with Winston Churchill and his son Randolph in the forests near Dieppe, France. (1928)
Gabríélle 'Coco' Chanel and the love of her life, Captain Arthur Edward 'Boy' Capel, in Sâínt-Jéan-dé-Lûz, Apríl 1917
Coco Chanel and the love of her life, Captain Arthur Edward ‘Boy’ Capel. (1917)
1950 Chanel reclines in her studio surrounded by paperwork.
Chanel in her studio surrounded by paperwork. (1950)

 

Some very cool facts about Gabrielle Coco Chanel

♥ She wore her scissors around her neck attached to her pearls.

♥ Chanel No. 5 is the best selling perfume of all time. It was the first perfume to secure ad time during the Super Bowl, and Andy Warhol even created an art piece for the famous perfume.

Andy warhol Chanel No. 5 art work

♥ Coco invented the suit for women.

♥ Chanel became the first brand ever to have a waiting list for nail polish.  A makeup artist backstage at the Chanel show in Paris realized the models’ fingernails were all bare. She quickly coloured them with black marker, then later asked that the resulting shade is replicated with an actual varnish. Chanel’s Rouge Noir colour became the first nail polish to ever sell out and have a waiting list.

♥ Coco invented the Little Black Dress. Or better known as the LBD.

♥ Chanel started out by selling handmade hats.

♥ The designer’s real name is Gabrielle, but she took the nickname Coco when she was working as a singer, long before she became famous. Where does it come from? She used to sing a song about a girl who had a dog named Coco.

♥ During World War II, she closed her boutique in Paris and offered to work as a volunteer nurse. There were rumours of a supposed romance with a Nazi soldier, so she moved away to Switzerland. In 1954 she returned to Paris with new and refreshing design ideas.

♥ She lied about her age. And never really told anyone how old she really was.

♥  Coco Chanel lived in the Hotel Ritz of Paris for more than 30 years, and this is where she died in 1971. The hotel still keeps the 188-sq-meter suite that bears her name, with many of her original decorations and personal items. But any fashionista, like me who would like to sleep in that room will have to pay more than 25,000 euros per night. One day when I’m a millionaire, this is one of the first places I’ll go to.

Coco Chanel Illustration by Megan Hess

How stunning is this illustration by Megan Hess?

Happy Birthday, Coco!!

If you love Coco just as much as I do, you can go view my Pinterest board for more Coco Chanel photos.

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Florence Welch’s Pyjama Collection

Florence Welch, more known as the lead singer of Florence and The Machine, has designed a Pyjama Collection! The singer has collaborated with Liberty London to create a glamorous sleepwear range but still true to her eclectic style.

Florence was quoted saying:” I think I dream in paisleys, so, for me, this collaboration is just a dream come true.” Yes Florence, it’s a dream come true for me too. (insert heart eyes)

 

florence and the machine

 

She told Vogue Magazine that she has developed a habit of waking up, drinking lots of coffee and writing poetry in her pyjamas.

It just makes sense to have nice pyjamas to sleep in. And when I’m touring and travelling it makes me feel at home if I’ve got some nice patterns to sleep in. But actually, I just really fucking love pyjamas!

Arent those patterns just gorgeous and look so soft? I’m sure this counts as more than pyjamas and loungewear.

As someone who basically lives in pyjamas when I’m on treatment or having an off-ish day, and someone who loves, loves, lurves silk jammies, this sounded beyond a pyjama clad dream come true. Florence has an eclectic style and her sense of adventure mirrors that. I have always admired her style. Not to mention that her lyrics pull at my heartstrings.

florence and the machine cosmic love

One of my favourite Florence songs. My other favourite is What The Water Gave Me. ♥

florence and the machine

So my thought process was that seeing that we are travelling to London in December, I can order a pair online and have them delivered to our friends in the UK. But although I’m a huge fan of Florence, her voice, and fashion in general, I just couldn’t justify spending R6750 on a pair of pyjamas. Sorry Florence, my Dog days are not over just yet…

For now, I’ll go back to singing along with Florence while in the car, pretending to be one of her backup singers. and hint at my husband to buy me her book! HINT HUSBAND, hiiiiiinnnnntttt!

 

 

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10 Instagram Photos that will inspire you to travel to London

With our upcoming trip to London in December, I couldn’t help but feel inspired by some of my favourite bloggers and Instagrammers’ photos while they were visiting the beautiful city.

I have been dreaming about living in London since I was a little girl.

I even chose the UK as the country I did one of my school projects on. And spent hours with my grandad who have traveled there frequently, listening to his stories.

But dreams aside, with mouthwatering pub food like fish and chips, the Big Ben, the London Eye, Windsor castle and the sighting of royals (who am I kidding?) the rainy, cold weather, and our best friends living there, what’s not to love. Aside from all the tourist attractions and doing what all tourists do, we want to go to some underground metal and rock bars/clubs and do a tiny bit of shopping on Oxford-street.

I’m extremely excited to experience Christmas in Winter as we have warm Summers here in South Africa over Christmas season. And you can bet that I’m already looking at ugly Christmas sweaters for Christmas Day. This is my one opportunity to wear a Christmas sweater without sweating or looking ridiculous.

So before I babble on about how excited I am, have a look at these London wanderlust photos.

10 Photos that will inspire you to visit London

@queenofjetlags

 

@alyson_haley

 

10 Photos that will inspire you to visit London

@bethsandland

 

10 Photos that will inspire you to visit London

@raquelsmx

 

10 Photos that will inspire you to visit London

@rosielondoner

 

10 Photos that will inspire you to visit London

@aspynovard

 

10 Photos that will inspire you to visit London

@inthefrow

 

10 Photos that will inspire you to visit London

@theblondeabroad

 

10 Photos that will inspire you to visit London

@amberfillerup

 

10 Photos that will inspire you to visit London

@lydiaemillen

 

It’s difficult looking at these photos and not want to start packing already. But it’s almost time for all the winter sales, so there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. Shopping!

And make sure to go follow all these beautiful babes on Instagram if you are not already. ♥

If you want to follow along on my travels to London, you can subscribe to my blog posts and follow me on Instagram.

I’ll make sure to link our London trip here in the future. And I might have to do a post about romantic Instagram photos taken in Paris, seeing that we are traveling there too. So keep your eyes peeled.

In the meantime, please enjoy my latest travels to the Kruger National Park.

 

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MSC Cruise – What to pack & Embarkation Tips

If you are anything like me, you start packing your suitcase a week or more before any holiday. You’ll have lists of what to remember and lists of things you still need to buy. Or you may be more like my husband, who can pack everything he needs, into a small suitcase, the night before.

                                                             Inside our Balcony Cabin

To say I over packed for our MSC cruise, would be an understatement. I had a massive suitcase and had to pay for the extra weight at the airport when we checked in… Something that my husband didn’t find funny at all. He always tells me that I overpack and he likes to prove to me he was right when we get home after a holiday and most of the clothes in my suitcase are still unworn. But a girl’s got to have choices, right?

 

Either way, we all have probably learned that what you pack or what you forget to pack, can impact your holiday immensely.We flew down from OR Tambo in Johannesburg to Durban, where we boarded the MSC Opera at the port in Durban.

Embarkation day is usually just waiting around on the Cruise ship for your room to be ready. and depending on the weather in the city you’re in, in Durban it’s usually extremely hot, sitting on the deck in the sun. I wore a lightweight jean, flowy top and sandals. Which worked out perfectly. But make sure to check out the weather while you pack so that you know what to wear on the embarkation day.

My list of things to remember:

  1. Pain Medication – For that unexpected headache.
  2. Seasickness Meds – Although I didn’t get seasick at all, it hit my husband hard on the first day of the cruise. and we paid a mini fortune to buy nausea tablets on the cruise.
  3. Reading Material – Your favourite book for relaxing on the deck next to the pool.
  4. A Cardigan that goes with everything – After shivering through a dinner in an icy cold cruise dining room, I was extremely happy that I always pack a trusty cardigan that goes with evening wear and jean when dressing down.
  5. Don’t forget your passport!
  6. Sunblock – For the obvious reason.
  7. Your Camera and camera charger.
  8. Chronic Medication – If like me, you need them.
  9. Binoculars – For the endless views.
  10. Card Holder – Your massive day to day wallet will be a hassle to carry around on the cruise. Instead, invest in a small card holder to store your cruise cards.

Bath towels and pool/beach towels available on board.

What to Wear on a Cruise

 

My choice of reading material will be Coco related 85% of the time. ♥

Now that you have the packing out of the way, here’s a list of my personal tips to make embarkation day easy peasy.

Unpack when you first arrive at your cabin. I find that this makes it easier to look for outfits for the rest of the cruise. Or maybe it’s a hint of OCD. Either way, it beats rummaging through your suitcase every morning and night.

Pack away dirty clothes. If you are not going to send that outfit to the onboard dry cleaners and wear it again, pack it away. We usually put them away in one of the suitcases. This will make it so much easier to pack up on the last night of the cruise. 

Schedule your flight at a reasonable time. Disembarkation day can take time. So make sure you have a flight booked at a reasonable time so that you don’t panic or even worse, miss your flight. 

And lastly, just a random tip… Take public transportation where possible on excursions. Instead of taking the bus when we got to Madagascar, we got a taxi. We paid the driver a bit extra and he took us to all the private, secluded beaches and local hot spots. It was one of the best decisions we made.

I hope you find this helpful! Have you ever been on a cruise? Or is a cruise on your bucket list? Please tell me in the comments below.

 

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My January Favourites

 

Happy Monday! I can’t believe we are going into the third week of January already. I hope you have been enjoying this heatwave we have been experiencing here in Gauteng. Nothing like the weather our friends over in the UK have had for the last month or so.

I thought I might share with you all my favourite things for the month of January.

Weekend Destination: Hennops Hiking Trail and Picnic

With the extremely nice weather we’ve been having this summer, we decided to pack a few things and opted for a day out somewhere to braai and swim. It’s not even a 25-minute drive from our home in Centurion. With a beautiful hiking trail, loads of areas for a picnic or braai and 2 swimming pools. It was a great choice.

 

Style: Speaking of said heatwave, I got all my dresses out from the back of my closet. I love me some lightweight, comfy and flowy maxi dresses. The right fit will look gorgeous and flattering on almost all women, any shape and size. Pulling a dress over your head is so easy, making the only thing you need to worry about, your makeup melting off your face. Haha!

Here are 2 maxi dresses that I’m in love with at the moment.

This one is from Spree and won’t hurt your budget either, at only R340! Click here to go shop this dress.

The second dress I love is from Superbalist. I like how it looks super comfy. This one will also not take a bite out of your budget at only R449. Click here to shop this dress.  

Both these dresses will look great with some metallic jewellery and a wide-brimmed hat. Making them perfect for the Summer. I have shopped at both online stores that I mentioned and can honestly recommend them both.

 

Movie: Jumani: Welcome to the Jungle.

I’ve recommended this movie to all my friends already. I can’t remember the last time we laughed from almost the very beginning till the end of a movie. This is hilarious. And as a bonus, it has Jack Black in it too. And who doesn’t love Jack Black! I liked the original Jumanji from 1995 too and this might be my favourite movie this year. That’s saying a lot, as we are still in January. Why are you still reading this? Go book your tickets online NOW to watch it in 3D!!!

 

 

Instagram Account to follow: Braeden Mckay

If you love beautiful travel photos, then give his account a follow. He is based in Canada and loves travelling. You won’t believe how young he still is, which amazes me with the amount of talent he has regarding photography! I’m looking forward to seeing where his talent takes him in the future.

 

 

 

Read: Dead Gods: The 27 Club

If you follow me on Instagram you would have seen that I’m currently reading this beaut. I’m a huge lover of music and got this book from the hubster for Christmas. And I can’t put it down. As the title states, it’s all about the famous legends that died at the age of 27. And all the music, sex, drugs and scandals that went along with it. I won’t get into it too much here, as I would love to do a full book review post on this book, as I feel it deserves a lot more than a measly mention in my favourites post.


Drink: At the moment my favourite drink is coffee. In my favourite unicorn mug. One teaspoon decaff, no sugar with skim milk. No fancy cocktails or beers this month as I just came off a week of treatment and am taking things slow.

 

TV Show: Stranger Things.

If you don’t know what Stranger Things are, then I only have one question for you… Have you been living under a rock?? This show captivated me since the very first episode! And I’m not sure if it is the set design, the music, the storyline or actors, but this show is currently my number one series of all time! Kicking Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead from their first place on my list. And that’s saying a lot! I’m currently taking my time to watch season 2 on Netflix as Millie Bobby Brown said on her Instagram that they haven’t started filming on season 3 yet.

 

 

 

Designer Dupe: If splurging is one of your New Year’s Resolutions, then I have just the investment you have been looking for. This classic black shoe is from Gucci and will cost R4150. Investing in classic pieces that you can wear with everything is always a good idea and will last you a very long time. You can shop this patent leather Gucci sandals at The Changing Room online. They sell second-hand designer goods at a very good price.

 

If saving sounds more like your thing this year, then these designer dupes would be perfect. I know “trying” to save is definitely part of my goals this year. I say trying because it’s not always easy. You know a sale can distract a girl! But check out these black block heels from Spree for only R349.

 

This was just a few of my favourite things this month! As you can see I’m all about chilling this month and shopping online. I would love to hear what some of your favourites are in the comments below.