FINALLY URBAN STREET STYLE IN DUBAI.. At SOLE DXB

Hi dears!!

This last weekend at the site where our awaited D3 -Dubai Design District- is being built there was a rather unconventional event. What made it different was that, for once ,it was not totally glamorous and bling bling! It was street style but not with high heels and Gucci bags in the middle of Dubai Marina.. It was urban street style as in New York, London or Madrid ( yep!  we also have!).

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V. I. S: Very Important Sneakers

The total king of the event were the sneakers.. all over, there were shops selling or just displaying them. The other king was the sun.. high up on Friday morning and we were all missing some shade. At the Ray Ban booth we even helped a girl that was feeling dizzy because of too much sun and heat.

Me and my partner in crime, Maria Elena,  walked all the booths.. we saw the shoes, the sneakers, the clothes, the bags, the sunnies,  the bicycles, the puma shop, the food stalls, the caps, the Minis.. I love the Minis, and the reinvention of the gipsy van using them was so cool!

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WWW.WHATIJUSTLOVE.COMWWW.WHATIJUSTLOVE.COM URBAN STREET STYLEUrban Art

There were some graffiti artists working to give the total alternative urban look to the event.. Remi Rough was working on a quite high wall and needed a lift to create his abstract griffitis. Antoine Tavaglione or Tava was having fun with a pink Garfield close to our soles.. we also had fun as you can see!

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WWW.WHATIJUSTLOVE.COMWWW.WHATIJUSTLOVE.COMBooths & more

Right in the center, there was a basketball field where people could play and also areas to skateboard around. The shops where hosted in containers, versatile, mobile, easy to transport and with the total urban look. The Puma and the Reebok were my favorites. The Puma because of the bikes. The Reebok one because it was bringing all the nostalgia back to me.. see why?.. Who didn’t have one of these babies in our teenager years?

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WWW.WHATIJUSTLOVE.COMMy thoughts

As usual I have some comments on Sole DXB.. The price was ok ( 50 Dhs) but it was quite difficult to reach. If you do not have a car with an updated GPS, all I can say, is Good luck!. The D3 is all mystery for me and I really wanted to see the insides and heart of the Design district but all of it is blocked as it is still in construction. I understand the restriction to enter as there is still a lot of works going on and it would be a liability and a risk to allow visitors in. As it was not as ready, I would have maybe chosen a different location.. closer to Dubai.

The sun and the heat was an issue. For next year please some “sunbrellas” or some more shade. Water and drinks were available for free and that was a big plus!. People were nice and ambiance was really great. There were supposed to be talks, but they were delayed and we decided that we will skip them because the place looked really “in the process” and we were not sure how long would it take to get finished. Same thing happened with The Level Shoe District.. Not even close to ready by the time we left.

I know we know that all the visitors to any venue or event in Dubai tend to come late ( actually very late), but I still find it too bad that the organizers are not ready when they are supposed to.

Well, that is all for now. If you have any questions or comments you would want to add, please feel free in the comment section.

Lots of luv,

 

Araceli

www.whatijustlove.com

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My new Turkish Telkari earrings .. Thanks Elianne!

Turkish Telkari Earrings- What I just loveHi dears,

Elianne has been a contributor to my passion for earrings from around the world and she bought me these classic lovelies in her last trip to Turkey recently.

They are handcrafted in silver wire using a technique called Telkari and are sold under the brand Seyahan. You know me, the researcher ( CSI- Dubai!) … and I found some info about this very old technique.

A Bit of History

“Archaeological finds in ancient Mesopotamia indicate that filigree was incorporated into jewelry since 3,000 BC. Specific to the city of Midyat in Mardin Province in upper Mesopotamia, a form of filigree using silver and gold wires, known as “telkari”, was developed in the 15th Century. To this day, expert craftsmen in this region continue to produce fine pieces of telkari.”

Well, that’s what the Wikipedia says.. and I believe it!- For some reason, whatever Google or Wiki says stands as totally true to me.

These particular earrings are coming from that city: Mydiat, from an Syriac orthodox family workshop, and what they have been doing for generations is to weld the 925 silver wire and twist it until it looks like this delicate lacework. It amazes me the work and the tradition behind it. .. 3000 years Before Christ.. wow!

Thanks Elianne !! My earrings collection just got upgraded thanks to you and your good taste!. I love my new Turkish Telkari earrings!! Now I will feel like Helena of Troy or Nefertiti when I am wearing them.!! Lol.. So full of history! You hear!

 

Lots of luv,

 

Leli

www.whatijustlove.com

www.thebagedition.wordpress.com

 

 

 

At the Grazia Fest

Darina calls me – Hey! What are you doing later on?

Me- mmm. Not much.. (on weekends, I can not really think fast for some reason..)

Darina- Well, then I pick you up and we go to Grazia Fest.

Me- mmm.. Ok!

So there we went! At around 17.00, even though the event was starting from 12.00 and the day before was on already.

Grazia was organising a festival type of event, the idea being a Coachella of sorts.. well, we are in Dubai, I guess we can not help it,.. so just when we were going in, some amazing ladies where coming out with stiletos and totally glamorous dresses.. Ok, maybe we should have checked the dress code.. what the lol!

Still, after our first impression, being beside the Barasti beach it was more relaxed than most of the events in Dubai and we enjoyed the time at the booths and with the familiar faces we were finding around.

There was an stage where some fashion brands where showing their pieces every now and then and DJ music, you could have a henna tattoo and get your make up or your nails done at Sephora booth or at Shiseido. The popo up shops were really cute and I saw some of my favourites ( Michele Belau, Vitrine designs, Charlotte Hudders, O’de Rose etc).

My lovely friend Viola was there too witha little booth. From her trip to Japan she brought really cool stuff. It is called Floats and they are toe rings, but like really pretty and rich. I bought one! I will show you in another post because I love it too much!.

Another stand that was a bit different was Cryo. They offer cryogenic treatment to lose weight and to smooth lines in the face. You could see how it works and well, it is cooooooold. Definitely the body treatment it is not for me (so prone to flus and cold feet and hands), but the face one, could be interesting to try.

One of the stands at the entrance ( Neutrogena if my memory doesnt fail) had the great idea of relieving stress the greek way.. by breaking plates with the sources of stress written by you.. Boy! not sure the science behind, but it works!

We enjoyed also some fire works and there was some concerts later on.. Our day it was Eliza’s Doolittle.. sadly I couldnt stay for that long. Friends that stayed said that she was good but maybe her performance was too short.

My thoughts on the Grazia Fest,.. It is really nice to have an alternative beachy- festival type of event- now that the weather is better-, the price thought was too high (150 Dhs), the food and drinks stalls were not too well organised like if you wanted coke it was a different queue than water ( somebody explain please!). Some booths were giving great goodies ( Iconic was really cool!) but still it feels like a pilgrimage of giving personal data and emails at every single booth. Still, I enjoyed it, but I enjoy whenever I am with my friends. By the way, do you know my lovely Darina has been nominated as Young Communicator of the year!! Yallah! I am so proud!!

Ok, enough for now.. Now let me show you some pics!

Luv,

Leli

www.whatijustlove.com

www.thebagedition.wordpress.com

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Ready to Boux!!

Hi dears,

 

In June I went to my first segregated runway in Dubai. Honestly, it surprised me but I think it was great for both sides of the screen.. the ones seeing the girls with their lingerie and the ones enjoying the shadows. Sometimes, less is more. I found it really sexy..

At that time Boux Avenue was coming as a new shop in Dubai, although it has been for some time already in UK here they were just opening their first store under the Al Ghurair Retail umbrella (ella, ella, eh eh.. ). They do lingerie, nightwear and swimwear.. and I went to the shop to get some pieces of the new cute collection.

Well, truth to be told.. they do cute but also, super hot stuff.. I remember some corsets that were totally gorgeous and will make my hubby faint (and me laugh with the situation of femme fatale!).

Well, back to Boux.. they are super experts and want you to feel as a queen so they have an “expert bra fitting advisor”.. hello? yes, not joking here.. and I must say I love the concept. I hate it when it is not the right size or the right shape and you have to try and try and try… This is a UPS for Boux I definitely like. Izilinda and Myles, the girls in the shop, were totally sweet and explained me all about how to make sure I choose the perfect size and the perfect bra. They know their stuff and have energy to light up half Dubai.

The shop I went to is the one in Dubai Festival City and it is really nice. I specially love the way the fitting rooms look like. You have switches for Concierge and also for three different light options. Cool, right?

Well, here you have some pics of my adventure at the shop and my purchases. What do you think? Lovely, eh? Now, are you ready Boo?

Lots of luv,

 

Leli

www.whatijustlove.com

www.thebagedition.wordpress.com

More info on Boux Avenue here.

PINK OCTOBER- BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH

Hi dears!

 

October is almost over.. In this month, we, women, receive zillions of messages in tv, radio, malls, media everywhere to check our breast and be very aware that with prevention we can get cured in the event we would find something as terrifying as cancer. Same as November is now Movember and guys are invited and prompted to check their prostates, October is the breast cancer awareness month.

Every year I write a message with this topic and it is because I love you, my readers, and as you know I have a close story related to this.  The importance of this check ups is huge, bigger that the uncomfort. Trust me!

You probably have heard of the Safe and Sound campaign that every october Burjuman puts in place. This year I was nominated to a cute game by Seema (from Sparkle with Seemz- follow her blog if  you have the chance). .. me and Anna, who I am so sad to see leaving Dubai ( Good luck, darling!). Let me tell you about the game. .. I have received an envelope with pink vinyl strips to glue to some of my shoe soles. I love crafts so I am in!!

While in Madrid recently, I had to stop to shop for some shoes ( the weather was not as I predicted) and I fell in love with this boots. Yallah! Now they will have a pinky sole. So if you see me walking around, your will be remembered of the check ups. ;)

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With this I am to post it with the hastag #PINKBURJUMAN and nominate other two friends. I know this kind of campaigns happens only in October but I would want to  have this all year long. Maybe not the game, but indeed the message.

I did my check up already.. Did you do yours?

 

Lots of luv,

 

Leli

www.whatijustlove.com

 

 

 

 

SOME THOUGHTS.. WORK RELATED & HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

Hi dears,

 

I am still hanging there, coping with some exhaustion still .. Tomorrow I have a doctors appointment, which I have been postponing for some time.. Now it is time to take care of myself again, and I say again because I am one of those who psycologist tend to call workaholic. I am not sure if this is due to the fact that I love my job, so it takes me close to nothing to enjoy doing it and being in my nature to be passionate, I just dont know how to do things half way or draw the line.. It might be that I have this philosophy that if you are to spend so many hours per day in an office (or site or reception or vehicle) then you better like it. So I select my jobs carefully, making sure I am going to be happy there ( with the task, the people, the company…). I can consider myself very fortunate as I never, so far, had to  stick to a job I didnt like.. at least, not for long.

Then what is first.. the chicken or the egg?.. In the past I learned how to control and draw the famous line.. Now I dont stay longerrrrr hours, I realised it is not even something so efficient at the end of the day. In Spain, where I come from, if you dont stay until very late, you are not committed. Your boss will expect you to stay until whatever time. I grew up in that terrible culture (when it comes to time management, rest is not bad at all!). Thank God, I got to travel and see the world and other ways of doing.. UK, was my first lesson about how impossible hours would not benefit me or the company. Everybody deserves to have a life, to have time to study that other language, to go to yoga or squash, to go out with the friends or partners, to sleep or just do nothing at all… We are humans, not robots. By the way do you know where the name robot comes from?.. It comes from the russian verb “to work”.

Well, that said… I am now trying to control myself from my “own intensity”.. which is my new issue. Eight hours in full intensity and focus leave you totally worn out.  Any ideas how to tackle it? Beside taking holidays or trying to break more often..I can not think of anything else. The holidays seem unrealistic as I want to go in Christmas back home, so I need to save the days.. The breaks.. are not impossible but a bit unrealistic too as we have so many things going on.

Going to bed now, as it is part of my “from now on” resolutions… But before, Happy Halloween to you all!! Are you doing something special for the most scary of the nights?

XOXO and ZZZZ,

 

Leli

www.whatijustlove.com

 

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BACK IN DUBAI.. BACK TO MYSELF

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Hi my dears!

 

It has been a while since my last post.. almost a month. I am sorry.. all my efforts to try to post more regularly were just vanished, just dissapeared ..you know sometimes life throws things and situations at you that require your full attention and now, a month later I am still there.. with my mind lost somewhere between stress, sadness and limbo.

This last month, month and a half has been crazy.. I normally dont get too personal in this blog.. it is about fashion, lifestyle.. it is supposed to talk about something that doesnt hurt ( even if sometimes certain styles may hurt our eyes), it is supposed to stand by the name -what I just love- not what makes me think or what makes me sad or what makes me just want to give up.. but all those feelings are very present in my life too. I guess in todays days we all want to look picture perfect and this aint pretty.. feelings are actually quite messy.

Anyways, just bear with me while I try to get back on my feet and feel the happy vibrant me again. I miss me.. so it is my duty number one. I wanted to do so many things this September -October.. I wanted to attend and enjoy Fashion Forward, I wanted to help Maria Iqbal to prepare for it, I wanted to go to Gitex, learn a zillion things related to mobile apps and technology, I wanted to attend the Spanish Embassy for our national day, design more bags, push a new blog in spanish and keep on writing for my friends and fellows,.. one very interesting collaboration with Mona has been bugging me but I just could not write a word.. I just couldnt even call.. I felt blocked. Sorry dears.. I just realised I am so very human that it scares me.

Bit by bit, one step at a time..

Luv,

Leli

 

 

 

MY LITTLE SOFIA BAG

Hi dears!

 

Even though I couldnt hold it when I just finished it and inmediately I posted the pic in Instagram, I want to share with you some more info of this cute little creation of mine.

The inspiration has been my very good friend Sofia Bernate. She is unique, super intelligent, an amazing woman, full of energy and love. As adventourous  and curious as me and therefore best companion of many confidences, trips, outings (also nighty ones!) and excursions while I was living in Jamaica. You didnt know? Well, I lived in Jamaica almost 6 years.. I will tell you more another day, I need more that a small mention for this blessed island in the middle of the Caribbean that I called home for so many years.

www.whatijustlove.comBack to Sofi and the bag named after her.. The idea came from a piece of fabric my friends from Regal gave me to start playing around with the sewing machine. They are really generous and where most of my designs come to be a reality. So, see the fabric.. it is red with cute black polka dots, some of them with a rim of beads in white.

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Having not too much of the same fabric I worked the design around – even though Sofi loves huuuge bags, the piece was not too big.  I came up with a even more passionate red piece of fabric for the linen to make even a bigger impact and avoid the polka dots of one side of being visible in the other.

I also added some interfacing to give it more structure and to protect the fabric as I think it might have been part of a sari or something delicate, specially the exterior fabric. You see there is a fold in the front? This allows for more interior space, gives more volume and breaks a bit the total symmetry of the polka dots. I love symmetry but in this case, I needed to break it and play with it.

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To close the bag, I found a vintage metal frame with ball clasps and a cute Oh-so-Mrs-Daisy handle. This part was the trickiest to sew as it has to be done by hand and making sure the fabric and the linen (and the interfacing) would not move from the “assigned” hole and sticht to the frame.

I loved it and I will be doing more of this type some time soon.

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On the meantime,  I stay tuned as I am really doing quite a lot of crafts now. (yuhuuu!).

Lots of luv,

Leli

www.whatijustlove.com

 

 

 

 

COLLABORATION WITH WOLFORD

Hi dears,

 

I am very excited to show you some of the pics of the collaboration with Wolford. It is funny, but since we initiated the conversation, wherever I was going I was just finding Wolford shops (in every cute corner in Paris, Madrid and here in Dubai Mall).

I always loved stockings and here I am using them for the office specially. Lets face it, Dubai is right now hot and humid, so stockings might not seem the perfect match, but in my office – where I spend soooo many hours of my day- it is freezing cold.. no matter if it is summer or winter. Lets just say we -females and males- have a fight over the A/C control and they always win. The tights are great and solve my problem and if you, like me, like them thin, then you can use them everywhere indoor and outdoors.

The selected tights were black with  10 den and back seam .. the devil is in the details, and this one model is just sexy and at the same time is a total classic. They are super soft and very resilient.  I styled it in two ways.. one in a naughty way with my hubby’s shirt, a mini skirt and the other with a LBD from New Look that I like a lot and I constantly mix with jackets in white or black. The shoes are from Pierre Cardin and are the typical lady Oxford shoes with pretty black and caviar bead accents. I could have also used heels but I found this look easier and so comfy I could run a marathon with.

Wolford has more than just tights. If you check on its website or visit one of its shops, you will find it has also swimsuits, bodies and pretty lingerie. They also have a ready to wear section with nice dresses, skirts and tops and another section called “Shape and Support” ( to keep things in place!). I also discovered that they also have an accessories line with belts, scarves and some stockings gloves that look amazing.

Ok, lets go for the pics.

I hope you like them!

 

Leli

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AT FASHION FORWARD TALKS… THE SHOE BUSINESS

I always enjoy the talks at Fashion Forward as much as the runways. There are so many insights, wisdom, advise, .. and all of it, it is there if you are opened to it. Now that is about to be another edition I was just remembering about this amazing talk I enjoyed so much of the last edition.

I honestly wanted to attend this talk because I saw a spanish name on the panel and I like to support my nationals, even if it is just as listener. I love shoes, but I am not really in the shoe business. Then I realise that the panel was amazing with Aennis, Shamsi and Amanda Navai as shoe designers.

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Let me briefly introduce you to them.. Aennis is a Jordanian with an amazing sense of aesthetics. He is an architect and is obsessed with geometry and calligraphy. His unique shoes reflect both: the architecture and the beautiful arabic calligraphy. I discovered him through Instagram. His feed made me dream…I was seeing my little ravioli feet with beautiful words around. I still can not read arabic -left alone the calligraphy- I just trust that they dont say “stinky feet” or “I need a pedicure” kind of message ( Aennis I hope I am not giving you ideas! Lol).

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Aennis was for me the most authentic within the panel (sorry guys, everybody has a favourite!).

Amanda shoes are very nice too. Her UPS is that they are made out of pythom and she spoke about how she started the shoes out of the leather scraps from the bags. Pythom is expensive material to use and if you can maximise the leather piece, then you should. She mentioned a lot the need to be on top of your business ( so true, creative souls of the world listen attentively..). She moved to Lebanon because of that.. same as Aennis lives in Italy. Just be where you produce and keep your eyes on the production to make sure your standards are understood and kept at all times.

Rania and Alberto were representing the Shoe Level district. For those who don’t know it is like shoe paradise, all the most beautiful, unique shoes in the world live there happily ever after, being admired and purchased by savvy shoe lovers. This heaven is ruled and curated by Chalhoub group.

Shamsi is a local designer of male traditional shoes. He knows perfectly his market and what works here. Sure he wants to grow but he is seeking the best way to do it without loosing hi straditional touch. Not easy.. Local o Global..What is it Glocal in reality? Should we loose our identity to open new markets or show we just stick to what we know best, what we are comfortable with?

During the talks, we heard both answers: yes and no. So I guess we will have to find our way accordingly to our personal circumstances. These were some of the messages said during the talk…

 

The most important thing is passion.

Alberto

As a designer, be humble..

Listen to the retailers, listen to the customers, listen to everybody…

Rania

Start by little…

Amanda

It would be great to develop the craftmanship for footwear in the region.

Rania

Prada is not my competitor…

Shamsi

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I posted all the pics of the talk on the Facebook Blog’s page, but here you have some of them. I am so lucky to have a cute pic with Aennis!..Next step is having a pic with his cute shoes!.

Luv,

Lil

www.whatijustlove.com