It's time to say goodbye to Weekend Ritual, and hello to GRACE NOTES.
From now on expect weekly doses of weekend inspiration - in full force. I'll be curating and sharing anything and everything that's caught my eye during the week, alongside a roundup reading list, playlists, mini reviews, foodie recommendations, and news on the latest beauty launches - all landing at 7AM, on the dot, every Sunday.
Ooh la la, I hear you say.
My aim is to provide you with your first port of call come Sunday morning [post-coffee and pre-home spa], with content which balances a visual aesthetic with reading material worth sinking your teeth into. So, as of today, this is YOUR invite to spend your Sundays in true TGG style - spent tucked under the duvet with mountains of reading material, lazy brunches, culture-vulture hotspotting, and some Sunday beauty rituals.
The past week has seen a promising start to BST, and if you've been hunting for last year's sunnies without success then allow me to direct you to luxe eyewear mecca, Smart Buy Glasses. The site sources designer glasses and sunglasses from the likes of Gucci, Céline, Burberry, Ray-Ban, and Tom Ford; offering them at significantly reduced prices and shipping them worldwide, free of charge. Sounds too good to be true, but this is quite simply luxe eyewear at its best.
From the latest trends to timeless styles, and with thousands of designs to choose from, you're certain to nail your S/S 2015 eyewear look of choice. A case in point are these supersize tortoiseshell shades [the Céline Audrey Sunglasses*], inspired by the iconic pair worn by Audrey Hepburn in the cult classic Breakfast at Tiffany's. I'll confess, they haven't left my face all week [and that has nothing to do with the sun] I'm obsessed, and rightly so. Chic and sophisticated, these shades embody the elegance and charm for which Céline [in the more than capable hands of Phoebe Philo] is so well known, and are large enough to cover all manner of [cocktail-induced] sins [sunglasses > concealer, any day]. I've been pairing them with a slicked back up-do and an all black ensemble, a la Ms. Hepburn.
FURTHER READING : Phoebe Philo discuss her Céline mission.
EAT & DRINK
Located within and above Manchester's supersize Paperchase store [a haven for stationery lovers, which aside from the obvious, stocks pieces from HAY and Rifle Paper Co. alongside niche magazines and a vast range of art supplies] you'll find Tinderbox Espresso Bar. Few seem to be aware of it's existence and so the quirky schoolhouse-inspired tables and chairs are more often than not empty, and the place exudes vibes of an independent coffee shop despite being located bang in the city centre. With good coffee, excellent iced tea [see above photo], free wi-fi, and views more than suited to the avid people watcher, this is a pitstop-worthy location for the weary shopper.
FURTHER READING : The Art of People Watching.
WEEK IN INSTAGRAM
KEEP UP TO DATE WITH THAT GRACE GIRL
The latest from NY-based 'not just your ordinary lipstick brand' Lipstick Queen; The Frog Prince* is the new lip product to covet. Within the sleek pink packaging, you'll find a green bullet. Emerald lips? Fear not, instead the sheer green pigments enhance the natural pink of your lips [colour spectrum science] transforming them into the perfect rosy pout. The shade also adapts according to your PH levels and natural lip colour, meaning that no two lips will look the same.
The formula itself is enriched with Vitamin E and shea butter, and leaves lips with a soft, glossy sheen and a sheer pink hue which lasts impeccably. If you're still seeking the ideal 'my lips but better' shade then this is your happily ever after, and might just conjure up your own Prince Charming.
N.B Frog Prince launches next month in Space NK nationwide and online.
FURTHER READING : An interview with Lipstick Queen's inspirational founder Poppy King.
Murakami has been on my 'must read' radar for some time, having been recommended 1Q84 upon multiple occasions. Before committing to the lengthy tome however [it boasts a whopping 1328 pages] I decided to test the water with one of his slightly smaller works and opted for Norwegian Wood, the novel credited for raising Murakami to literary stardom. Despite being translated from Japanese the eloquence of Murakami's prose is most certainly not lost in translation, and the book was a pleasure to read as much for its composition as its story - essentially a psychological study of human relationships and emotions.
A very relatable and amusing piece on the idea of quarter-life crises.
It may not feature Manchester [yet] but this beautiful app curates lists of nearby nice coffee shops - for when you're in need of a caffeine boost but want something a little off the beaten track.
As if the warm weather wasn't enough, here is all the inspiration you need to catch the running bug.
The Freunde von Freunden team caught up with Lucy Vincent, founder of skincare brand Skin Ceuticals - a fascinating and beautifully photographed piece.
The Debrief are condensing the manifestos of a number of political parties ahead of the election - here's the Green Party, in a nutshell.
Over on ALO I shared my five favourite budget body care brands - ft. Lush, & Other Stories, The Body Shop, Soap & Glory, and Burt's Bees.
My incredibly talented friend Jen launched her podcast series 'Make it Happen' this week, sharing interviews with bloggers and creative entrepreneurs. Make the first episode the soundtrack to your Monday morning commute.