| Photo Diary | New York Perspectives

Last week I was sent to New York for work. A whistle-stop breeze through the Big Apple for work. Work or no work - the camera went too so we could catch sights while I was shunted from one mission to the next.

The thing that struck me about New York is that it is a city of vistas. Long straight gridded roads that intersect neatly and at each end there is a surprising vista. I like that! A city of tidy roads and interesting perspectives, completely unlike the weblike network I've come to know in London. Oh and the skyscrapers are REAL sky-scrapers. So tall! Much taller than what I've seen in London or even Tokyo.


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| Objects | Omamori

Strictly speaking, you're not supposed to make a collection of these. They are said to retain their powers for 1 year before they need replacing. You are supposed to take them to a local temple to dispose of them so they can be purified in a ritual burning. 

But as we don't live in Japan we still have all the omamori we've collected and been given from different parts of Japan. Some of these are quite old and some very rare so I'd like to think that their powers haven't dissipated but grown.

Omamori are basically amulets or talismans. Little charms that contain a written blessing within an ornate fabric pocket. It is super bad luck and most disrespectful to open and look inside an omamori. Funny enough though, I have a friend who's teenage part time job was to make these for a rural temple in Japan. Learning this completely messed with my idea of them being holy things. 

More curious objects | HERE |

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| What I Wore | Still Liking

My love for garments that are loose, slouchy and generously roomy for movement means that I spent next to nothing on maternity wear. I wore most of my clothes throughout pregnancy and fit comfortably back into them again after our boy's arrival despite somehow dropping 10kg of gained weight like a sack of hot spuds (no idea how because I didn't plan to)

|Peter Pan collar shirt from Muji + Laser cut top from COS + Cropped trousers from ASOS + Slip-ons from Office |

I'm still doting over boyish/androgynous cuts/lines. Still monotonously mad over monotones. Still loyal to my love for layering. Mumma always did say that I am stubborn!

I guess that is the crux of following one's instinctive 'style' rather than media dictated 'fashion'? I don't know! I just really get it when people follow their own course and get the most of what they like.

Respects to Sweet Toof

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| Photo Diary | Horyuji

Japan is not short of beautiful mind staggering temples and though we have not visited enough to claim a clear favourite, there is one that stirs genuine emotion and inspires us more than any other we have visited and that is Horyuji.  

Every temple in Japan is in its own way rich in intricate and unique detail. Horyuji sets itself apart as the worlds oldest surviving wooden structure. 

Few nations are as enamoured with wood as the Japanese and the historical cultural relevance of this is so beautifully exposed in Horyuji's architectural bones. It is a place of poignant shadow and tactile warmth. Masterfully constructed edifices that stand as testament to a real knowledge and respect of wood as a fabric for building. Astonishingly much of the work was managed without the use of a single metal nail. 

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| WHAT I WORE | FlyKnit Chukka

When Hiro visited Dallas, he bought himself a pair of Nike Free Flyknit Chukkas. Trainers are much better priced in the US than over here. Anyway, that was in winter and anyone who has a pair of Flyknits will tell you, they are not ideal the cold.

Hiro says........

"Now that the sun is making a more regular appearance and my toes don't get bitten by a frost, I wear them more and more. If you've not tried on a pair of Flyknits, know that they are very comfortable, breathable and as light as your feet can take. A good choice for city living, walking and even cycling - not for serious cyclists mind you. Good enough for me and my Rasta Brompton".

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| What I Wore | Kikoy

I always take a kikoy away with me when I am travelling. Always.I have done so since I was a child. A kikoy is an east African wrap. A large bit of fringed cotton cloth that traditionally worn like a sarong by men on the Swahili coast. For me, they are the epitome of versatility.  I am an African girl and it pleases me to take a bit of my homeland with me wherever I go. As a child I would take them with me to wrap the unfamiliar pillow I had to sleep on within it because it smelled of home and I could be certain that it was clean (such an odd kid!). Now, I use them as sarongs, wraps, skirts, blankets on airplanes and even beach towels. They dry much faster than a regular terry beach towel and are much much lighter but still absorb water efficiently. 

We are usually among the last people to leave the beach on a sunny holiday day. The last to give up our loungers. The people milking the very last rays of sun before it tucks itself away beyond the horizon.

There is something about the last bit of sun that is quite magical. It is soothing, calming and the light it emits its beautiful. Sleepy end of the day sun is the best sun.

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