Abida Mian's Blog

An outlier that's living, learning and being myself…

Archive for April, 2011

Laura Ashley Archive Collection

Laura Ashley Archive Collection Spring 2011

I’ve admired a few Laura Ashley pieces in my time, but have never purchased up until now. A brief perusal of their website the other day and I came across their archive collection.

Laura Ashley describe their archive collection:

“For an unmistakably nostalgic look, we have lovingly sifted through our archives to produce a range of dresses, shirts and cardigans using prints from a bygone era. Beautiful bird, butterfly and floral prints reference this season’s passion for Botanicals, with delicate vines, sprigs and roses sitting alongside more vivid Bouquet prints adding irresistible charm”


Laura Ashley Archive Sundress Rose


Laura Ashley Archive Print Sundress Bluebell

I’ve just ordered their 50’s style archive print cotton sundress in rose (pink). Unfortunately they don’t do a size 6, but I’m hoping that even if their size 8 is a little big, I can make a few adjustments. Can’t wait until this arrives, will look good with a bolero, wedges and a straw hat…



Yamamay Spring 2011

On a recent trip to Westfield shopping centre, I popped into a shop called Yamamay. Never heard of this Italian lingerie brand before, but I loved their pretty Spring 2011 collection. The prices are reasonable. Love the floral wallpaper, bedding, pink nails and the model is ridiculously stunning…

Yamamay Spring 2011


Yamamay Spring 2011

Birthday blues restores my faith in humanity…

Last week was my birthday, I had a rather nonchalant attitude towards it when colleagues and friends asked how I was going to celebrate. When you’re young, birthdays can be quite exciting, but as you get older, for me anyway, I’m just not that fussed. I concede that part of it is the fear of not meeting the expectations/goals that you’re supposed to achieve with age. On a more positive note, I do feel more confident in myself and know what I want now than I did a few years back…

While I tried not to mention my birthday, on the day itself, my colleagues bought me some bright flowers and Cath Kidston vouchers – I thought it was really sweet that they knew exactly what I liked! After work, I then got persuaded to dress up and went out to dinner with a friend to Hakkasan Mayfair. Elderly neighbours of mine made me a special cake. Then the next day, my colleagues children came to see me for lunch and we went to my favourite Lebanese cafe opposite Kensington Gardens, his daughter gave me a handmade card – albeit with my age on the front 🙂 Then at the end of my birthday week, I received chocolates from a client for a doing a good job.

The nice thing was that it was totally unexpected, I didn’t even want to acknowledge my birthday, yet people made the effort to make me happy – I’m very lucky and grateful 🙂

Hakkasan Mayfair

As a birthday treat, I was taken here for dinner. On entry, to the left is a bar, where I had a non-alcoholic cocktail called the Kowloon Cooler – absolutely delicious. I liked the service, the bartender was very polite and friendly. Then we went dowstairs to eat, we shared a few dishes, one of which was called stir-fry Welsh black beef (of course being Welsh had to try that one!). The food was very good, waiters were attentive but not annoying. Yes, it was expensive (eventhough I didn’t pay), but I enjoyed the food and the service. Dress-wise, everyone looked smart, I just wore a pencil skirt, white blouse and heels. Recommended.

Website: http://w3.hakkasan.com/mayfair

Thomas Pink Sloane Street

My experience was the complete opposite of the previous reviewer on Qype. I needed some nice fitted shirts for Spring/Summer, but the style I wanted was out of stock in my size, so I visited their Sloane Street store. Although they also didn’t have a size 6 in store, a really friendly female assistant said she could order it in and it would take a couple of days to arrive. I was also unsure whether I could fit into a size 4, so she ordered both sizes for me to try. When they arrived, I walked down to try them on and decided that because the style ran a bit big, the size 4 was a better fit. Unfortunately the assistant packed the size 6 and I didn’t realise her mistake until I got home. I called up the store, and they apologised and offered to deliver the correct size for free at my work address. I was impressed with the way they handled the situation, but in the end I just went back down there. The assistant was very apologetic, and let’s face it, we all make mistakes! I’d definitely go back when I need more shirts 🙂

Check out my review of Thomas Pink – I am kensingtonabida – on Qype

Empire of the Sun – Walking on a Dream

I love google. I’ve been wondering what the song on the Toyota Hybrid advert was. A simple google search today and it’s a song by an Australian band called Empire of the Sun, the song isn’t new, it was first released in 2008. Great tune…