Market OTB and Hafsa Lodi 

After five months of living in Dubai, I came home last night and was met with what can only be described as…HEAVEN.My husband asked me to come into the kitchen and open the fridge. The sight that awaited me was pure bliss. I’ll give you a clue. Orange and blue. Och, I’ve given it away haven’t I? Yes, you guessed it. It was IRN BRU. Often known as a substitute for water, Irn Bru is a stereotype that many Scottish people dislike being associated with. I am one of those people that actually epitomises that stereotype and my mum often suggested running an Irn Bru drip into me because I couldn’t get enough of the stuff.

For the last five months I have not had a drop. I was told that Park & Shop in Tecom sold Irn Bu but I just never got round to the place. Then yesterday my husband found it in Lulu Hypermarket of all places. Life = made. It doesn’t take a lot to make me a happy woman. Four cans of Irn Bru in the fridge is the equivalent to buying me a pair of shoes. I kid you not.

Right, let me get to today’s post. I can go on can’t I? You should know me by now though that no topic is ever introduced straight away.

This weekend I had a pretty busy schedule but I managed to do lots and I’m going to tell you a little bit about OTB Market at Burj Park which is currently running until the 30th of January. 

Market OTB is a market which gives local talent a chance to showcase their stuff for over a week! There are also stage performances, free sports classes and guest speakers talking everyday. I went on Thursday which was the opening night and I had so much fun. 

I went along to support my friend Hafsa Lodi (more on her in a minute) but had a good wander round the park and saw some pretty cool stuff! I was wearing these ridiculously high wedges though so I only really made the effort to take pictures of Hafsa’s stand which was a bit daft considering I’m doing a post on it now. How and ever, there’s an official Instagram page for the market and you can check that out to see some other pictures. Note to self: do not go to shopping festivals/markets in 6 inch high footwear which results in limited photography. One day when I am a millionaire I will have an assistant who will wheel me around places like Burj Park when my feet get sore whilst taking pictures. Now, you might think wouldn’t it make more sense to just hire a photographer? But I like taking pictures for my blog myself unless it’s pictures OF me then I have no choice in the matter. When I’m a millionaire and I start to change and think I’m too good to take photos then do tell me to pipe down and link this post back to me. Thanks.    Anyway, so I mainly got pictures of Hafsa’s stand, a) because she is my friend, b) because she is my friend and c) because her stuff is so awesome! I actually love how quirky the girl is. My style is so boring in comparison. Her designs are an amalgamation of Western meets Middle Eastern meets Asian.

Exhibit A. 

 In one piece you will end up seeing, denim, pearls, luminous lace, florals, Aztec prints, tassels, paisley motifs, mini bells and some Arabic text for good measure. I’ve probably missed something out. But you get the idea.

That’s what I loved about all her pieces. I had seen a few bits and pieces here and there and she sent me a few things to wear also (more on those coming up) but when I saw her clothes all together I was squealing with excitement. They are just so quirky, unique and adventurous. Not every piece is as daring as the embellished waistcoat, she has simpler stuff like white cotton blouses with print collars.Every piece by Hafsa Lodi is hand embellished by herself meaning that nobody else will have the exact same piece as you. Her embellished collar blouses were also on my list of favourites. 

Look at the gorgeous detailing on that collar on the white shirt on the wall!

 Hafsa is sharing her stand with a friend who runs Aina Dubai, a line of unique cushions and accessories hand-made in Dubai. I loved the ‘Mr Right’ Arab version the most! If you are intrigued by what you see and think you want to check it out then please do go along to Burj Park (next to Burj Khalifa) and check out the Market. Can I just clarify that I am not being paid to promote the event in case you think I’m being paid to plug something I don’t believe in. Rest assure everything I blog about is stuff that I know you guys will actually be interested in. I wasn’t planning on doing a big blog post or anything originally, I will be honest. I took my camera along to get some pictures for Instagram mainly. However, I was snapchatting from the event and got such a huge response with girls loving Hafsa’s stuff and wondering if she delivers around the world so I thought I would put up this post and let you decide whether you want to order anything or actually go and view her stuff in person if you are in Dubai. If you do go along to Hafsa Lodi then tell her this wild Scottish woman sent you. I’m sure she will know which one it is.

Right, let me show you some of the Hafsa Lodi goodies I wore and styled.

Outfit 1 I wore this cute, white blouse with hand sewn pearls and embellished sleeves the day that I went to the market. It was so cosy and comfortable but I went and wore those daft wedges which were anything but cosy but white always makes your legs look bigger than they are so I felt I needed something with a bit of height. My friend took these quick snaps before the market so unfortunately I don’t have any close ups or any of me ‘walking’ oh so casually like my usual blog pictures.

Outfit 2 I made the effort to go and shoot this on Saturday because the high low top was something so different for me. I don’t normally do casual that much on the blog and it’s something I’d like to share more often. I feel I’m always showing you girls super glam looks and that’s fine but perhaps you would like to see me do more every day looks? Of course I style every day looks for myself but these are never the looks that I end up shooting. More of these coming right up, Hafsa has inspired me!   Top – Hafsa Lodi

Jeans and shoes – Topshop

Sunglasses, rings, earrings and arm candy– Aldo

Watch – Daniel Wellington

Necklace – Miss Selfridge Check out me in my Pat Butcher earrings. Okay fair enough I was doing casual but I still had to go and do purple (Rebel by MAC) lips and put on those chandeliers.The top was super comfortable, flowy and girly all at the same time. I paired it with denims which I thought was probably to best thing to wear it with? You can find more styles in the high low tops at the market if you go and visit. There’s some really cool food vans there too btw. I’m talking fresh popcorn made in 60 different flavours. What even?For more information on any of the pieces you have seen in this post check out @hafsalodi on Instagram and I’m sure she will let you know how to go about placing orders if you are not in Dubai.

If you want to know a bit more about the Dubai Shopping Festival or Market OTB then follow their two official pages on Instagram:

@dsfsocial and @dsfmarketotb

I have been following both pages to make sure I don’t miss out on any upcoming shopping related events in Dubai while the festival is still on.

Before I finish, I have also teamed up with Daniel Wellington watches and they have sent through a special code for my followers which gives you 15% off. Again, I don’t get paid for giving you the code or if you buy the watch. I just know a few girls were asking for it so pass them around and it should save someone a bit of money! Their watches are really nice and I wear mine to work every day! Simply type in missmulberry at the checkouts on http://www.danielwellington.com. Remember to share your pictures with me. I love seeing them!

This brings me to a wee story to finish up. The other day I clicked on the hashtag ‘missmulberry’ which I’ve barely ever used because I feel stupid but imagine my face when I saw that it had almost 700 posts under the hashtag. Well, I got so excited until I realised it was 700 pictures of the same tunics over and over again. To the Instagram business using my hashtag to sell lawn, please could you not?

Now, while you carry on flicking through these pictures, I am going to have a chilled can of Irn Bru. Oh yeah.

Love,

Miss Mulberry

P.S. Thank you to the husband for being my photographer again. There’s hope for you yet pal, there’s hope for you yet.

 

 

 

 

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Khushboo Kaplesh SS16

I’m daft for a pastel colour aren’t I? You all know this about me don’t you? Well, I’m daft for all colours really but ESPECIALLY pastels. So, imagine my delight when I was invited to view a new collection at The Fashion Network office in JLT a few weeks ago. I was invited to view the SS16 ready to wear collection by Khushboo Kaplesh and was lucky enough to get to wear some of her pieces.    

    
 Khushboo Kaplesh is a Dubai based designer so I was keen to check out some new talent. All of her pieces had a running theme of gorgeous prints inspired by marbles. Her pieces were very crisp and structured, just what I like. I saw lots of peplum and a-line skirts which were extremely figure flattering. Unfortunately some of them were far too big for me thanks to my boy figure but they were so girly I was just dying to wear them! I chose three pieces from the SS16 collection and have created a look with each one for you.

Look 1  Crop top – Khushbook Kaplesh

Skirt – Coast

Shoes – Zara

Watch – Larson & Jenning

Necklace/Earrings – Miss Selfridge

Bracelets – Asos and Swarovski tennis bracelet  I absolutely loved the print on this top. The wavy lines all mixed together reminded me of colour mixing in school when you would be mixing paints on a palette and the colours would all run into each other. The print mainly consisted of pastel colours but then there was a hue of bright pink which I loved! How cool is that wall by the way?! I literally was squealing with joy when I discovered it near the Marina because it went perfectly with the colours of the outfit. My husband probably wanted to throw me IN to the water. He shot these pictures (with a lot of guidance) and I’d say he did justice to the clothes!     I put the top together with this Coast skirt I had worn previously to the ladies night I organised a few months ago (still need to blog that one, don’t I?) I love ankle length skirts and how girly they look but really struggled to find them back when I was in the UK. Hemlines seem to be much longer in the UAE so I have found a few staple skirts that I seem to pair with everything in my wardrobe.   I loved that this look was glam but kind of simple too in a way. I made sure that the skirt I wore it with wasn’t too elaborate or it would have taken away from the beautiful colour of the top. Absolutely loved putting together this fun look and look forward to wearing it again to a girly brunch or two!

Look 2  Now, this was the complete opposite of the first look. I fell in LOVE with this dress the moment I saw it. How girly is it?! What I loved when I wore it was that although it wasn’t as fitted and structured as some of the other pieces, it was still so flattering on? Loved how tall it made me look. Love a dress that is long enough to cover your feet sometimes and this certainly did that. The baby pink colour was just beautiful and there was almost a polka dot print in a pastel blue spread throughout the dress. Because the dress was a statement in itself I kept the jewellery simple.      Arm candy – Aldo Accessories (Love that place in Dubai because they have a separate Aldo just for accessories!)

Necklace – Miss Selfridge

Earrings – Mango (They are quite elaborate actually. So much for simple)

Sunglasses – Aldo Accessories. These pictures were shot by a gorgeous new friend I made! Her name is Natalie Lines and she takes INSANE pictures. She is also a luxury illustrator and blogger also newly in Dubai and it was amazing working with her! Always a pleasure working with someone that just knows their stuff. It makes my life a whole lot easier as a blogger because I can focus on the clothes and the products I am blogging rather than thinking about camera settings and lighting! She recently started up a photography page: @desertstyle which is super cool so you should check it out on Instagram.

What do we think of look numéro deux? (Why am I speaking French?)

I would say it was my personal favourite out of all three.

Look 3 

Look 3 also shot by Natalie Lines

 

For me, this was the most fun outfit of all. How cool is the sheer detailing on the shoulders? Thanks to the way this dress was cut it gave me a bit more of a womanly shape.Miracles can happen ladies. I look like I have a cushion strapped to my wee bum.

The pastel theme continued as did the marble print in this dress but this time with more circular shapes using the same print dotted all around the dress. There was also sheer material used all the way around the knees area which broke the print up a bit!      Let’s move on to accessorising! Earrings – Miss Selfridge

Watch – Kennett Brand

Shoes – Zara

Sunglasses – Aldo accessories.

Not a dress you could wear everyday but I definitely enjoyed styling it up and shooting it for the lookbook so I could show you three completely different looks within the same line.     I absolutely loved the line and how creative it was. I hope you enjoyed looking at the three looks I created for you as much as I enjoyed putting them together!

You can check out more of Khushboo Kaplesh’s line @khushbookaplesh on Instagram. If you want to make any enquiries or want to visit the showroom to view pieces then contact isidoraperic@tfnconsulting.com or visit their website http://www.thefashionnetwork.ae for more info!

Let me know your thoughts on this one as it is something different to the normal high street stuff that I do for you girls!

Love,

Miss Mulberry

 

 

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Afternoon Tea at Burj Al Arab

Having been in Dubai for four months now, I have had the chance to visit new places and experience new things nearly every week so let’s just say I am a little behind with blogging about them. Trying to catch up with some of the things I did in 2015 and after that my New Year resolution for 2016 is to blog more regularly. May the backlog blogging begin!

Around October time, my sister came to visit me for a week and we had an AMAZING time together. I think we have finally outgrown our bickering now that we don’t live with one another and actually appreciate one another’s company. One of the things that she insisted on doing was having afternoon tea at the Burj Al Arab whilst she was here. She was so keen that she pre-booked for the two of us before she came out to Dubai, a mighty feat for the unorganised soul that is my sister. The distinctive sail shaped, 7 star hotel needs no introduction. It is one of the most iconic buildings in Dubai and probably the most synonymous with the city. The Burj Al Arab has repeatedly been voted the world’s most luxurious hotel and one can see why before you even get inside the place. More on the opulence and grandeur of the place later.

The afternoon tea experience took place at the Skyview Bar, located aptly at the top of the Burj Al Arab. The bar extends off the building meaning there is nothing underneath it other than the deep blue sea. At times when people walked you could feel it shaking slightly. But we tried not to think about the logistics of our afternoon tea too much.

There are two seatings for the afternoon tea; 13:00 and 16:00. We chose the second seating so that we could watch the sunset over the Palm Jumeirah and World Islands. The price per person is 620AED which is around £115 per person. I have been to many an afternoon tea and most do not cost even half of that price. The tea was a treat for the two of us from our dad but still I had a wee bee in my bonnet about the price and was expecting a Devonshire clotted cream like no other considering we had paid over £200 for the two of us.

Well, let’s just say you pay for the experience more than the food. Don’t get me wrong, the afternoon tea was splendid. We were treated to a selection of tea, coffee, sandwiches, pastries and cakes served with a choice of delicious homemade jams. The price included unlimited food and soft drinks and we also got to try some date juice on arrival. Sounds horrible but it kind of tasted like fizzy apply juice. Definitely try it if you ever come across it! The food was brought out in several courses and we loved everything that was on offer. As each course arrived we got more and more full but each course was timed correctly and gave you just enough of each flavour. But is the actual afternoon tea worth the money? Probably not. But, the experience is.          I would suggest booking in advance and going for the second sitting because it meant we got to see the views in the daylight but also got to see a magnificent sunset whilst we were there. As you can imagine, seats fill up quickly and they are allocated on a first come, first serve basis. The window seats are wanted by all and there is one particular table in the corner along two windows which is highly coveted due to the spectacular view it gives you across the whole city and the ocean also.  

The best seats in the house!

  The service was impeccable and I can’t fault anything in that department at all. This was reflective of the price that we paid and like I said you pay more for the experience than the food that you are eating. The service, views, surroundings and the grandeur of the place all make it a worthwhile experience and something you should do once if you are in Dubai for that little bit of luxury that us women sometimes crave.

At the end we were all given a special pink box with some pink macaroons inside as a parting gift. Pink because it was breast cancer awareness month. I have kept mine inside my dressing table drawer and keep wee bits and bobs inside it. A nice memento of a fabulous afternoon had with my sister spending quality time together.     If you want to book then the details are as follows:

Telephone: +971 4 301 7600

Email: BAArestaurants@jumeirah.com 

Outfits.      For once I didn’t go that girly and it was my sister who rocked the florals. Doesn’t she look AMAZING?

Her dress and shoes – Asos

Her bag – Charles & Keith

She was rocking this really cool, block fringe at the time. Heaven only knows how she pulls these things off. Can you imagine my wee round face with that? I’d look like a mushroom.

Anyway. My outfit looked quite corporate but I liked my flared, polka dot trousers that I picked up in Zara. My top was also from Zara. I sported red lips on the day since I had my red soles on and to finish off I took out a red bag that I had picked up at Aldo a while back. Let’s just say it was my sister who turned a head or ten although we did bump into some really lovely American ladies who asked to get a picture with us because we looked ‘fly’. Score!

Us beaming looking ‘fly’!

 Overall, the experience was amazing and not something you would do every day. If you’re in Dubai definitely to the Burj Al Arab for afternoon tea and have a wander round the hotel. You will be asked for some kind of proof of reservations before security let you in though so make sure you have this with you before you go to save you the hassle.

Love as always,

Miss Mulberry. 

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