Saturday 26 November 2016

Saturday 26th November: Hyper Japan Christmas Market

Just when you think you might know what to except from a day out at Hyper Japan, you get served a cat carved into your cappuccino.  The craft of "3D Latte Art" was being demonstrated for visitors to appreciate how a "dog in a bath" is moulded with precision individual dollops of foam for each detail.  Incredible!  It's just one of the live arts on the timetable for the 3 day event on this weekend catering for those interested in all aspects of modern Japanese culture.  There's a concourse of food stalls serving up octopus donuts to a gaming arcade for the latest consoles and DDR dance revolution stages.  I love all the stalls of little ridiculous accessories like jewelled phone cases and cat ear headbands.  I discovered an irresistible Unicorn shaped phone charger and spent an unusually long time in the cooking utensil section with the heart shaped toasty templates.  I was also assured that this is officially the cheapest place to get an alpaca this weekend with both Black Friday and Christmas discounts.  Reassuring news for all the girls dressed as shepherdesses holding hooks and the soft toy lamas nestling in the crook of their arm.  This is my favourite thing - all the costumes and the time that they have gone to in constructing them.  Even the boys have fox tails hanging out of the back of their jeans. 

If you're fed up of Itsu on the high street, head down to Tabacco Dock this weekend for Panda face rice balls, grilled sushi burgers  and sparkling sake cocktails.

Friday 25 November 2016

Friday 25th November: Gems Jams in Margate

A weekend in Margate for Gemma Cairney's new clubnight "Gems Jams" including visits to the Turner Contemporary gallery, Dreamland arcade, Roost rotisserie and Haeckels - - "Organically Crafted Wild Fragrance & Seaweed Skincare harvested from the Margate's coastline" which is the most beautifully presented and scented place I have ever been!

Friday 25th November: WAH! Soho, opening night

Here is Sharmadean Reid at the opening of her newest nail salon in SOHO.  She is one of my favourite London characters and for that reason, a contributor to my book about this city.  I asked Sharmadean for her Top 5 Beauty Shop Tips, and here is the original text:


It wouldn’t be a London book without hailing the Queen Bee of beauty – Sharmadean Reid MBE (voted 1 of 15 people who will define the future of arts in Britain when she was 24).  With a background in trend consultancy she had the insight to see a gap in the market for an emerging nail art phenomenon about to go mainstream.  Using the branding of her fanzine WAH! she opened her own nail bar in Dalston and used the space for exhibitions and launches. The E8 premises has returned after a concession within the labyrinth of Oxford Circus Top Shop meanwhile the empire has metamorphosed into a nail care line on high-street chemist shelves.  The designs that Sharma invents for shows at fashion week or for her musician friends (M.I.A, FKA TWIGS) can now be reinterpreted by teenagers at home across the nation.  Hailing from Wolverhampton, I bet the teenage Sharma would have been pleased as punch to know she’d become one of her generations leading entrepreneurs.   She’s a fountain of knowledge, a force of inspiration and a fun tornado of energy to have whirlwind around.

I love the old world meets new world feel of tHis space. It truly is a global apothecary yet its completely modern and energised. All pharmacies and beauty stores should check their approach. 

50-54 Wigmore St, London W1U 2AU


1)    Planet Organic

The best selection of natural products and because I also believe health is inside out, I love that I can buy food which will nourish me as well as Dr Haushka, REN, Wild Nutrition and all my other fave products...

2)    Panacea Beauty

This little gem has all sorts of weird health products like slippery elm porridge… but I also love that instead of taking a whole brand range, they will just feature cult products like my absolute fave Nubain Heritage African Black Soap body wash.

99 Muswell Hill Broadway, London N10 3RS

3)    Baywood Chemist

I just moved to West London and there are loads of great chemists there, but I really love this one, a mix of higgledy piddgledy deadstock products as well as luxury beauty brands…….. and its on the most beaut part of the Grove. 

239 Westbourne Grove, London W11 2SE

4)    Liberty Beauty Hall

For my luxury beauty, I always shop here. Its been my fave since I first moved to London. I love wooden spaces and I love the traditional feel. Although it can get quite crowded I still go there at least once a week to buy and browse.

Regent Street,  W1B 5AH