sweet valley twins

View From The Front Row

So on Saturday, I was very lucky to be given a front row seat to one of the Cabot Circus Fashion Weekender shows. Having never been to a fashion show that wasn’t organized by a friend for charity, I wasn’t sure what to expect! I saw the stage earlier in the week when I went for dinner with Michaela and Jess, but couldn’t quite work out how they were going to have seats around the stage. I’d assumed that there’d be a few rows of seats all around, then standing room for others, but I had no idea it would be this busy:

This was about half hour before the show was supposed to start, and it seemed that there were people perched on every vantage point. Scary!

Sarah was on her way to Bristol at that time, having driven from St Alberns at the last minute. I started to worry she wouldn’t make it in time, so after introducing myself to the people at the stage area, I told them she was on her way (she’d just gotten to Cabot Circus in time) and gave her name so she could try and sneak in.

Remember I said before how I expected there to be quite a few rows of seats? There were 10 seats set up at the end of the runway, with other bloggers there. (Well, I assume they were bloggers…couldn’t really talk to them because it was so loud!) I felt a bit conspicuous walking in front of the masses that were held back from the stage with a lot of fencing and guards!

Gok Wan was presenting the three shows on Saturday which is (I assume) the reason there were so many people there. Who knew so many people love a bit of Gok? He came on and said a bit – you know the sort of thing, “it’s so nice to be in Bristol”. He then went off and the models came on.

There were a few sections, each focusing on a certain look, and usually featuring one or two stores. Unfortunately, I had lost my camera charger that morning but assumed a half full battery would hold out for the shows. It didn’t. I did get quite a few good photos, which can all be seen on my blogs Facebook page.

The first look up from this show was a “retro cool” one from Urban Outfitters. I loved this look – it was a wearable version of the sorts of outfits we saw at the Chap Olympiad. I’m not too sure though how I feel about this being a trend. On the one hand, part of the charm of this scene is the hunt to find the perfect item, vintage or otherwise, and thats lost when you can just go to Urban Outfitters and buy the same item as half a dozen others. On the other hand, I love the stylings, and its more about how you as an individual put the outfit together.

The models in this section did a bit of a dance routine to “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy”, which I’ve captured quite shoddily on my iPhone:

I loved this coat as well, I think it was Jane Norman, which isn’t normally a store I go into, but that was the really good thing about the fashion shows that were out on, they showed you looks from stores you probably wouldn’t normally go to, and showed looks that could be made from stores in Cabot Circus.

Other stores featured in this show included Espirit, TM Lewin (loved their workwear!), Dorothy Perkins (an old Uni fave of mine, and not just because there was nothing else in our Uni town!), A|Wear (a new favourite store of mine) and of course House of Fraser (who had some gorgeous military stylings)

Unfortunately Sarah couldn’t get there in time (to be explained later!) but I really enjoyed the fashion show. I’ve picked up a few ideas about what I want to add to my wardrobe as well!

Cabot Circus Fashion Weekender

Can you believe that Cabot Circus is 2 years old already? (Well, actually, yes I can, but thats because I moved here 2 years ago. Hush, you know what I mean) It seems like only last month that Julian, Ally and I visited for the first time.

To celebrate their second birthday, Cabot Circus are holding a weekend full of fashion shows to show off the latest trends available in their stores. There’s going to be shows in both Cabot Circus and Quakers Friars on Saturday and Sunday – the Saturday shows being hosted by Gok Wan, and the Sunday ones focusing a bit more on Harvey Nicholls and House of Fraser.

The “Fashion Weekender” is being held to help raise money for Breast cancer Care, with goodie bags being sold all weekend.

On their Facebook page, some of the new seasons advertising photos have been put up, and they look amazing!

Coat, £59.99, Zara, Dress, £100, French Connection, Belt, £15, Topshop, Boots, £75, Barratts, Sunglasses, £12, Next, Pin, £9.99, River Island, Bracelet, £14, Warehouse

Dress, £55, Bangle, £16, both Warehouse, Waistcoat, Day Birger et Mikkelsen @ House of Fraser, £199, Necklace, £18, Aldo

(I honestly love these photos, they look so awesome and then you realise that they were shot in the middle of Bristol! It just doesn’t look like it!)

I’m going on Saturday afternoon and will be sure to let you know all about it next week!

Massages, Manicures and Om Nom Nom Nom

After all the commotion over my personal shoppers at House of Fraser post, the Bristol store offered me a VIP Experience, which I accepted because it sounded like fun! I was given spa treatments, a manicure and a meal for a friend and I. Of course, I had to take the Wife, because honestly, I couldn’t put up with the silent treatment from her.

So, we headed over to the Robin James Aveda Spa which is on the ground floor, sort of tucked away near the Benefit stand. I went for a massage whilst Louise went and had her nails done.

(apologies for the crap pictures in this post, it was SO dark in the spa (er, I guess thats cause its supposed to be relaxing? Duh.) and I didn’t want to use the flash, cause that would look odd. Is that a blogger thing? Sneaking pictures in dim lighting? Any tips?)

First of all, my feet were bathed, massaged and moisturised as some form of ritual whilst I answered some questions on how my skin and body were feeling today. The Aveda massages vary according to your answers to the questions, with different oils being used to suit your mood.

Infinity Nature – balances normal to dry skin conditions
Air Nature – nourishes dry, dehydrated and mature skin
Fire Nature – cools and soothes sensitive, irritated skin
Water Nature – clarifies blemished and congested skin
Earth Nature – purifies normal to oily skin conditions

My choices were all pretty much aligned with the Fire theme which made things easy! After my feet were all cleaned and moisturised, I was shown to a little room where I was told to strip down to my pants. I’ll admit it, I was a little nervous about this, as I’ve never had a massage before! I stripped down, and then faced the problem of what to do with the towels. Should I arrange them artfully to cover as much as my body as possible? Cover up my bum and boobs but leave the rest? When you’re standing in a strange room in your pants where a stranger could walk in any minute, these decisions are surprisingly difficult to make! In the end, I dove under the covers, and everything was OK. (The lady who did my massage said that she’s seen people just sitting on the bed completely starkers, so at least I wasn’t that embarrassing!)

(I have no idea what this machine was, but it looked VERY SCARY)

First of all, I had to lie on my back which seemed odd as part of a back massage, but it was really nice. (I’m sorry, I’m going to over use nice I think) I turned over and she really gave my back a beating! I’ve been getting some weird pains in my left shoulder for the past week or so, so she concentrated on that one, and it feels SO much better now.

After the lovely massage, I went downstairs where Lucy showed me the range of make up that Aveda has. She just did simple makeup on my eyes and a bit of gloss for my lips – the Aveda range is very neutral, lots of browns, taupes and beiges.

I headed over to Nails Inc then to have one of their Heavenly Hands treatments, where your nails are shaped, moisturised, your hands are massaged and then you have your nails painted – I chose Belgrave Place which is a deep violet blue. I’m still not used to seeing my nails look so pretty – whenever I paint them, they always seem to get a fingerprint on them.

Once we were all massaged and moisturised out, we headed upstairs to the Zest bistro. I hadn’t realised that this was in the building, I thought there was just the Cafe Nero downstairs! Zest is like a restaurant, with typical “department store” style food, but something a bit different. I had a chicken noodley salad which was delicious, and Louise had a goats cheese tart which was awesome.

Our boys had been let loose together whilst we were having our treatments – when I reminded Alex of this earlier in the week, his first thoughts were “Good, what sort of thing are we not allowed to do normally” – a phrase which made me wince! We found them up on the top floor, enjoying a vibrating chair massaging thing – Nathan ended up buying one of them, supposedly for Louise, but I suspect it will become his gaming chair!

We had a really lovely time with House of Fraser, and I think we’ll be heading back again for more treatments in the spa! Thank you so much to the team in Bristol!

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