New In Store at The Bentall Centre

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The Bentall Centre has been around for 25 years now, and I’ve been a dedicated shopping there since it’s arrival. From the days when I’d meet my best girly pals on a Saturday, feeling independent and like a proper grown up (even though I wasn’t) and excited to scope out cute boys while spending our pocket money, to now, where I do my big Christmas shops, and most of my post pay-day splurges. If you watch my vlogs you’ll have seen Si and me visit the store regualrly, when we’re feeling energetic walking from nearby Bushy Park so we can meet some deer on route. I was very excited to be invited to share with you guys some of my favourite picks from the 80 stores (and over 1000 brands).

On this occasion I brought my mum, hoping that my nagging presence and the task of picking out my personal favourites might encourage her to try some things on and update her wardrobe. We parked in the car park, which means crossing the bridge which takes you directly into Bentalls homeware department. I always get distracted by this area of the store, there’s just so many objects that tick things of my Pinterest ideal home checklist.

Once I remind myself that I am yet to own a place I decorate, I then go on to find myself hypnotised by the rose gold heaven that is the Charlotte Tilbury concession in the incredible Bentalls Beauty Hall. Once I pull myself together (again), I usually find myself heading to And Other Stories first.

One of the stand-out trends in store is the print shirt. When I was younger I only associated shirts with study and work, so would never pick one out to wear for fashion’s sake. As an adult I absolutely love the versatility of a long sleeve shirt and I now have a new rule – you can never have to0 many. Wear it with a mini and knee high boots, wear it with jeans and trainers, wear tucked into a high waisted cigarette pants, underneath a blazer to jazz up a plain suit, or open over a cami top….the options are endless.

I was extremely tempted by this floral one, and it’s currently written on my ‘what to get next time I go to The Bentall Centre’ list. How great would it look under a statement red suit or tucked into your 90’s wash jeans with some statement red strappies.

Mum and I both loved the graphic scallop detail of this knit jumper, and the cute pastel navy colour combo. It would look dreamy with slimline slacks and a brogue.

I’m obsessed with anything that reminds me of Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet, and these slipper mules with their love themed embroidery instantly made me recall his visionary movie. Although I’m not sure I’d take the plunge myself, these glitter embellished trainers were a bit special, fans of The Blonde Salad would adore I’m sure.

Recognise that blouse hanging up??

You guys know that one of my best loved looks is the simple band/graphic tee teamed with a solid bit of denim. Finding a good, vintag- looking tee, which also features my current fave colour and animal prints…well you’ve knocked it out of the park, quite frankly.

I see a lot of my favourite bloggers sporting wid- legged or cropped denim lately and it’s a trend I really want to pluck up the courage to try (I’m a bit scared I’m too hippy for it), especially if it means I get to wear this much of my favourite shade (yellow ochre). Talk about a knockout pair of trousers!

I’ve been lusting after a vibrant trainer recently having  finally got round to completing my original holy trinity of classic shoes – Black and white Vans, Converse High tops, and Dr.Martens boots. Now I feel it’s time I got the non essentials, the ones that excite that won’t necessarily go with everything, the styles that some people will think are  an impulse purchase that isn’t sensible with your current financial status. Yolo as the kids say…or has that phase passed now? Either way, you know what I mean, the trainers you want rather than need.  Plus, I’ve definitely reached that age where the comfort factor of shoes is nearing the top of the priority scale, so I’m all about the flats.

My all time favourite pair of sunglasses are a mustard pair my friend Holly gave me from And Other Stories – the epitome of retro cool. They have every shape and colour covered.

I adore their jewellery designs. Lots of discs and presents in silver and gold – definitely my chosen aesthetic right now. Simple and minimalistic, with some lovely sculptural elements.

If I wasn’t vegan this leather bucket bag with it’s gold chain would be my dream bag – it’s incredible , a great investment bag that will never go out of fashion.

How stunning is this coral pink satin suit with the angles pockets and heart buttons? Adorable! I loved how they’ve paired pink items with red too, which is another weirdly complimentary colour story for this season.

Alongside straw hats, we will be seeing printed head scarfs bandanas and turban style headgear this S/S and I’m not angry about that. Great for hiding sweaty fringes.

I actually changed into one of the day’s new purchases, this AOT blouse because I just couldn’t wait to wear it – and this photo captures the moment someone in store thought I worked there and asked me a question. Another lady came up to me and said she was going to buy it after seeing it on me which made me feel all warm and fuzzy, that stuff just makes you’re day doesn’t it?!

I really want to make more of an effort with my undergarments this year. For too long I’ve not cared because I figured that no one get’s to see it so it’s just a waste of money. But I went to a lingerie blogging event recently, and it really did bring home how much of a positive effect it can have on how you feel  in terms of confidence and feeling sexy. Also, underwear can often be worn as outerwear too now, so who says I have to keep gorgeous stuff like this completely hidden, I’m sure I could have it sexily peeking out from the gape in a shirt.

And Other Stories is definitely in my top 3 shops in the Bentall Centre right now, it’s just such a pleasure to walk around because it feels very exclusive yet inclusive, which is a tough balance to strike. You know you are around beautiful clothes and accessories, but yet you don’t feel intimidated because the vibe is cool and relaxed rather than stuffy.

Zara has always been one of my favourite destinations in the Bentall Centre since it’s arrival. It’s the shop that got me from awkward teenage to fully fledged lady status. It taught me how I could look designer, and interpret catwalk looks, without having to save for years to fork out on label prices. If I’m honest it’s very rare for me to have the will power to leave without one of it’s branded brown paper bags in hand. They’ve made it even harder for me to leave without suffering a financial impact now that they’ve renovated the huge multi storey store and made it even more enjoyable to shop there. With an improved layout and a vaster range of designs, I challenge you to come away without a stylish addition to your wardrobe.

Straw bags are a huge style story this spring/summer so if you are someone who tries to keep up with the trends, this is a must-have item. I loved this Zara example, because the black details make it more durable and potentially longer lasting than the completely straw version, and it comes with  handles and a long shoulder strap for versatility.

I was blown away by the details on Zara shoes during this shopping trip. It’s so great that this kind of design can be so accessible. I love the aztec patternation, the roping, and the metal eyehole details for the lacing on these blocked heel strappy sandals.

I love the baby pink satin fabric teamed with the transparent heel which encases red and pink classing feathers. These look like they walked straight off the runway.

Black and white teamed with yellow seemed to be a colour combination Zara were emphasising in store. I know some of you will worry about looking like a bumble bee, but trust me this palette can create an incredibly cool look. To improve your chances of success play with texture – combine sequins with smoother fabrics and leathers with jersey for instance.

I am weirdly fond of clothes that come in mucas shades. They look great with a tan and sun bleached blonde hair, and this was a particular favourite dress in store. It’s loose and effortless in feel, but nips in at the waist to create a feminine silhouette.

I absolutely love the ribbon detailing of the sleeves of this crop knit. This would look fab teamed with statement shorts, like these floral Zara ones here, but would work as a more Parisian outfit teamed with jeans and a heel, with a luxe Chanel-esque bag.

These instantly brought me back to that special day in New York when I spent half an hour with Sarah Jessica Parker shoe shopping in Bloomingdales. The shoes she picked out for me were electric blue satin with jewell embellishment like these, and everyday I regret not coming home with them. Maybe I should get these to make myself feel better, what do you reckon?

One of the biggest attractions of Zara is it’s ability to create designer looks with a less scary price tag. This bag with it’s metal hardware and contrasting leather looks straight out of Diane Kruger’s wardrobe.

The blazer of dreams. The small checked giving it the appearance of being grey, making it an incredibly versatile piece that will look good no matter what year it is. Team it with jeans for an effortlessly-chic, power- dressing day look.

I was very happy to see 90’s styles continuing  as I’ve been embracing the comeback wholeheartedly and quite enjoying pretending I’m back in my heyday. This tweed and faux denim A line skirt with poppers screams Cher from Clueless, and these trainers definitely make me want to grab a hair brush and sing ‘If you wanna be my lover…”.

The accessories in Zara are stunning right now, look at the intricate beadwork of that bag! Their earrings are just as showstopping, my friend Molly very nearly came away with those yellow flower/black tassel numbers.

One of the most prevalent trends in Zara at The Bentall Centre was intricate bead work, mirror discs and colourful embroidery. My parents lived in Mexico before they had me, so I’ve always had items around the house with similar pattern work and decoration. I’m now always drawn to these styles. You can’t help but think of travel when you see them – it made me want to get on Sky scanner and immediately book a flight out of here.

I used to buy my finest stompy  boots from Vagabond. They were always the best brand for my chunky and comfy  heeled boots, but I have to admit I wasn’t aware of all the other incredible styles they offer too.

I absolutely loved their trainers, like these suede platform style ones in a soft pink with the interesting securing flap over the top. Great shoes for people who can’t be bothered with the faff off tieing laces. Also, check out those amazing ones with the black sole and laces….oh dear, another pair for the wish-list. Your go to stop for nailing sports luxe.

New Look at The Bentall Centre came up trumps yesterday. Within a couple of minutes we were queuing and making a purchase (one which delivered a free nail varnish too). I found an amazing khaki jacket that (not the on pictured below) that I adored for me, but knew would look amazing on my mum, who is always a bit hesitant about spending money on herself. I made her put it on and immediately I saw an expression that said ‘pleasantly surprised.’ After a few twirls in front of the mirror and a few sentences needlessly justifying the purchase, she was sold, and looking rather chuffed with her newly acquired ‘cool and funky’ jacket. Mum tried it on for Dad when she got home, and for once it was greeted a compliment without an insensitive jokes pre-empting it. That’s a first!

I also loved this khaki jacket, which is perfect for the tricky transition period, because you can layer over a hoodie, which is already layered over a breton top or something similar. It’s also an item which will serve your throughout festival season and well into Autumn too. There was also a great selection of Stutterheim inspired coloured rain macs too, which will make keeping dry during our soggy S/S period less depressing.

The obsession continues…I resisted, but it was hard to ignore these checked trousers with their belted waist.

The holiday items are creeping in, and I’m seeing a lot of striped pieces like this cheesecloth style, cold shoulder top, with its tiered sleeve details. I can’t wait to team this my denim cut offs and a gold sandal.

New Look also houses some other great brands like AX Paris. I’ve been loving oriental inspired prints and shapes lately, so loved this floral navy blue dress with it’s striking orange blooms and high neckline.

I’ve not hidden my devotion to the bum bag. They’ve been a much loved companion on holidays and at festivals for about 2 decades now, and I wouldn’t be without them. I’m so pleased that I’m no longer considered a big dork for having my possessions wrapped safely round my hips. New Look at The Bentall Centre have a great selection – versatile black, punchy orange, glam metallics.

 

Looking for cutesy gifts and homeware, there’s some very sweet items displayed near the cash registers, for those looking to perk up their dressing or bed side tables, or jazz up their flat lay images for Instagram.

I don’t need to tell you how good New Look are for shoes, arguably one of the most popular affordable ranges for my demographic. Not only are gentle on the back balance they also cater to wide feet and people who seek comfort from their footwear.

How stunning are these vibrant red heels? Perfect for those that prefer to cover their hairy, veiny, pasty, dry legs with tights or who rather keep their nightmarish toes hidden, and those who need some extra support at the ankle. Beautiful with suiting, summer dresses, occasion wear, or even to make a sassy statement with jeans and a simple crisp white tee.

I adored these heels mules in mustard too. Perfect for summer nights when going from hotel to dinner, sunburnt and desperate for Sangria.

If you want some classic trainer pumps but don’t want to fork out for the branded versions, then get the budget versions that look just as good but you won’t feel guilty about chucking out when they start to turn – you know what I mean when an aroma starts to resonate after many days of being worn by sweaty, sandy and salty tootsies and no socks..

I’m trying my best to resist splurging on summer items just yet and wait till all the offerings are in store but their selections of summer sandals made it incredibly difficult.

Probably my favourite find in store was this embroidered bag. We’re still seeing a lot of things trend, stitchings featuring on denim and blouses and even trainers. I loved the contrast of the fiery petals against the dark suede of this bag, and it’s also the perfect size to fit all the gubbins we tend to carry around with us these days!

As I look at this picture, I’m currently lamenting my loss, this compact yellow number with it’s chain strap was the perfect holiday bag. Why didn’t I guy it?!!

My mum gave into the charm of this bag, she thought it looked so classy and would allow her to fit in seamlessly with all the chic it alien women when she takes  her trip to Lake Como later this year.

Cos at The Bentall Centre is one of the most beautifully curated stores. You almost feel like you are stepping into an art gallery because it’s so aesthetically pleasing and refined in design. It has an instantly calming effect and feels like a complete escape (particularly during a busy Saturday shop), thanks in part to the layout, the spaciousness of the displays, the lighting, and the fresh floral decoration throughout.

It’s sophistication of design doesn’t intimidate though. The attention to detail and the way they collate the products means that it is a great store for those that struggle to put outfits together too. They locate items near pieces that would work well together, whether they be good matches in terms of colour palette or style.

I always think of someone that dresses at Cos as one of those effortless people, the ones that look like they just threw something on but look enviably cool. They’re unfussy in their dress, but add interest through the bold silhouettes. Often oversized, almost unfitted, the sort of designs someone who doesn’t want to scream sexiness but exude it through the way they hold themselves would want to buy.

Whether you are a naturally confident dresser, or whether you utilise their helpful aids to allow you to fake it, an outfit purchased at Cos will make you instantly chicer and cooler.

While a large bulk of Cos items are minimalistic or classic, they have those few stand-out items that intrigue too. How adorable is this collar? You can put underneath any jumper, vest, dress…well, whatever you like, that’s the beauty of it!

This is a great example of a rail that capture what COS does so well. Pick any two items from this selection and they’d look great together. They’re staples, but ones that are clearly quality, or tailored in a way that lets you know you’ve taken care with acquiring that staple.

There’s something so architcetural  and sculptural about Cos jewellery – in-keeping with their aesthetic, they’re simple, bold but striking. I particularly loved this simple gold disc which would look incredible set against a monochromatic outfit.

A very simple way to inject some fun or glamour to a simple outfit is via a statement sock peaking out from your ankle. I’ve been folding up the hem of my jeans to reveal a glittery sock for a while now, and was very tempted to add this gunmetal grey glitter sock to my ever growing collection.

My dear friends Holly introduced me to the wonder of Cos underwear. She said buying her everyday bras from there was a complete game changing for her. She’d got sick of underwire digging into her ribs, or wearing unflattering and squashing sports bras which although comfortable didn’t leave her feeling very sexy. She has a reasonably ample chest, but with a small back, and said that their offerings are the best in terms of being comfortable, supportive, but also being incredibly pretty/cool (and making her feel hot). Although I won’t personally opt for sheer, I’d be more inclined for that beautiful khaki one, see through looks are another big trend for S/S, and the peach colour is angelic and ethereal.

There’s a few classic trainers that are so ingrained in our fashion psyche  that they almost don’t register as a piece anymore (like Converse high tops), which means they are perfect to team with our outfits, simply as a way to complete a pleasing look almost unnoticed. Sometimes you need that canvas style trainer shoe that doesn’t distract from your sleek minimal look by having OTT  logos, feature stitching, garish laces, or contrasting soles. These adorable ice cream pink plimsoll lace-ups are perfect to add colour in an understated way that doesn’t overcomplicate your overall look. Great for casual daywear, sports luxe or to teamed with suiting to take it from business to leisure. Gelato hues were a bit story on the S/S catwalks too, with Michael Kors, Victoria Beckham, Chanel, Preen, Tom Ford (and many more) offering theirs own creamy pastel hues. You can pick out your favourite sorbet flavour or scoop up a few and devour them all together. Style yumminess.

I’ve loved HM since I was a teen – when I only saved pocket money, Saturday job money, and birthday windfalls to splurge in Kingston. It has always had the best selection of affordable basics and casual wear, with a percentage that leans to those that have interest in street, skate and alt dressing. These days HM covers every style persuasion in abundance, and caters every style mood I tend to drift in and out of .

Until recently I hadn’t really associated great footwear with H&M, but The Bentall Centre store has a particularly extensive selection of shoes that cover all style bases – glam rock boots (both chunky and kitten heel), everyday boots (chelsea, platform and patent), Pointed toe mules, loafers, ultra girly heels with cutesy details (bows and flowers), classic occasion wear….I could go on and on.

If you’ve visited a lot of HM stores you will know they vary quite a lot in terms of the stock, with some focusing more on basic or workwear, others more on their teenage demographic. The one in The Bentall Centre is my favourite because it has a perfect mixture of every side of the brand, and with multiple floors it can be your one stop for everything you need to make an outfit…while picking up homeware bits on route.

 Floral prints on top of khaki – I love the idea of hard meets soft.

As you guys know I have been embracing colour in a big way recently on the blog, so I was instantly drawn to this incredible luxe looking bomber, which came in this incredibly bold tangerine red. It’s more expensive looking than many of the bombers styles I’ve seen on the hight streets, and a perfect addition to a wardrobe looking to creating epic colour blocking ensembles or chic sports luxe looks. Vogue has said that Crayola Brights are one of the big trends of S/S and HM and definitely appears to have taken this on board.

It took all my might to resist this Beetlejuice-esque striped blazer. I’ve been opting for suiting over dresses on the red carpet in the last couples of years, and this be a lovely addition to my collection. I’ve noticed that acid greens have often been placed near monochrome items in store as a clear hint to shoppers that they look fantastic teamed together.

H&M at The Bentall Centre was heaving with incredible print pieces. I adored this cream shirt which had a nature inspired print in a risky pink on top. The hem was lower on the back which is ideal, if like me, you prefer to keep your bottom covered.

This epic ensemble took centre stage displayed in full on one of the mannequins. This looks like it could be straight of the catwalk and would make more a very striking summer work ensemble (for those in creative roles),  a summer wedding look for those that don’t mind standing out. I’m thinking I might buy it and store away till my LA trip in August when I’ll hopefully be bronzed and a brighter blonder.

I’m often talking about complimentary colours, blue and orange being one of the most pleasing of colour combinations goings, so I loved this dress. The plunging neckline, the cascading asymmetric frill draping down the length of this dress, and the flattering sleeve length, makes this one of my finds of the day. It’s become one of those items I’m thinking about in bed and regretting I didn’t purchases when I fell in love at first sight. The one that got away if you will….Maybe there’s still time.

As soon as I think I’ve finally discovered the perfect jeans, suddenly the style of jeans we’re told we’re meant to be wearing changes again. I had just nailed the dream 90’s slim mum style, but now I’m wanting to find the best fitting culottes style, cropped swing, flares…and even skinnies again. If you are on a  similar quest and looking to try different fit and style H&M have a great selection, and not just in fit, they have some awesome colours which will allow you once again to tap into that Crayola Bright trend again.

 

There’s one area of the store that I always make a conscious effort to visit and is my go-too section if I’m limited for time. It has a definite more alt/rock chick vibe to it, and perfect for those that are a bit fearful of some of the more vivd trends. The colours tended to be muted or dark, there’s lots of denim, distressed and intentionally aged washes, and fits that range from sexy and fitted, to cool and slouchy.

If you’re looking for great rock tees then this is the part of the store you should head to. They all looked live- in and as if you might have discovered them in a vintage store (which is always the aim when shopping for merch). I have actually bought a lot of my band tees from the mens section of HM because I like them to look a bit oversized as if I’ve borrowed from a boyfriend. There’s actually a huge amount of unisex options here, so don’t overlook that option when you shop too.

I was very tempted by the belted denim dress in this section. Which is a great option if you like to go to gigs looking a bit sexy, but still comfortable.

   

As I hinted to just now, it’s hard to avert your eyes from the homeware department because it’s filled with so many gems it captures your glance as your browse through the fashion rails nearby. My obsession with Beauty and the Beast made me want to buy this case below and put a wilting rose inside of it.

Like we saw in with their fashion rails, monochrome and green look fantastic together. This is what I want my future kitchen aesthetic to be.

 

Straw appears to be a big story in homeware as well as fashion this season.

H&M at the Bental Centre isn’t just great for the main elements of your outfits, they have all aspects of accessories and finishing touches covered too. Whether you want a hat, scarf, bag or jewellery (or even make up now) there will be something to complete any style of ensemble. I know these earrings below will be a bit polarizing, they’re not the most subtle, I personally think they’re one of the most incredible examples of statement jewellery I’ve seen for an affordable price tag. Imagine these with a an all white outfit, perhaps a white suit or summer dress. If the thought of wearing white scares you because wearing it only seems to encourage the clumsy side of your personality to run riot, then imagine them paired with electric blue.

If you still want a statement earring but minus the all seeing eye, then the trend for tassle earring doesn’t seem to be disappearing yet, and HM at The Bentall Centre have one of the most impressive arrays of options I’ve found. I’ll have one in every colour please….

 

Of course before I forced myself to leave the store to avoid complete financial ruin, I was drawn in again by the magnetic pull of another pair of stripey trousers. I feel completely powerless to their appeal – it’s not been the fleeting love-affair I predicted when this trend starting to saturate my Instagram feed. Not only have I found that the majority tend to be in the most comfortable of materials, and the most flattering of fits, they just perk you up when you wear them. They immediately make you look like you’ve made an effort because they add fun to any outfit, and as a result are one of my favourite trends of recent times.

Oliver Bonas at The Bentall Centre is one of those stores I know will become an ultimate favourite in a couple years, when I hopefully have my own place I can decorate it exactly how I want. It’s allure is very clear to me already though. The visual merchandising and carefully curated displays make you want to become Mrs Bonas –  a living, walk and talking advert for the brand. Covering fashion, accessories, interiors/homeware, games/hobbies, art, books….pretty much everything, it creates a lifestyle vision that can allow you to overhaul your entire life in the confines of it’s  shop walls.

I went from browsing the books and being tempted by the ‘How to go Vegan’ book (I’ve been doing great, but had a mental wobble this week, so though it could reassure and strengthen my stance ), to gazing at a wall of amazing bold prints that inspired me to go home and get drawing again. Then pulling out pastel covered draws one of their amazing storage cabinets, to deciding what game I might pick up to try and convince my resistant family that games nights ARE fun, to grazing my fingers agains the amazing selection of abstract print silk shirts and dresses.

If you can stop thinking about your own needs and wants for a second, then you remember how great this store is for gifts too. One of my mums most treasured items from me over the years is a silver bird necklace I bought from Oliver Bonas, and one of my favourite gifts was a bracelet my friend Kelly bought me from their lovely jewellery range.

My mum’s personal favourites from our visit were all the chunky beaded necklaces that were draped over their fabulous colourful knitwear and painterly prints. For me, the stand out items were the UP YO NO GOOD print, the Awesome People Club wallet, the scarves with foiled metallic elements….and all the furniture I will eventually splurge on when I finally hop on the properly ladder.

       

Lunch at Maison Du Mezze

For lunch we were invited for a meal at the brand new Maison du Mezze restaurant in The Bentall Centre. As soon as you step into the decorative restaurant it feels like you must have also stepped foot onto a plane without realising, because you feel like you’ve been transported to another land, and definitely a considerable distance away from the chaos of a busy Saturday shopping centre.

This atmospheric Lebanese restaurant is themed with Arabian carpets and specially hand-selected Arabian artwork. The pale blue tables are intentionally aged, the walls are rustic, and there are beautiful tiles decorating the floor and alcoves.

The centre point of the restaurant is an olive tree, where some diners can situate them selves sheltered from the imaginary sun, which is represented by some beautiful gold lantern style lamps. Fern planters and trailing parts really bring the outside in and enhance that feeling of escapism that an exotic holiday delivers. It definitely doesn’t feel like you’re in Kingston.

The menu is incredibly extensive – there’s the predicted cold and hot mezze style dishes, but also pizza and pasta, and even curry. You guys know me, there was no way I could resist a curry so I opted for the vegetable one, while my mum ordered the chicken. I wanted to try something more authentic though so ordered the hummus to start. It was hands down the most beautiful hummus I’ve ever had, and I’ve had a lot in my time. It had the most pleasingly smooth texture (for hummus) and just look at that insta-worthy presentation. One of the lovely staff wanted us to try one of her favourite dishes on the menu too because she said it was very authentically Lebanese, so along with the Hummus dish we were brought Makdous , which is Baby aubergines stuffed with walnuts, herb and garlic marinated in Olive oil and lemon. I’m so pleased she insisted because it’s not something I would be naturally inclined to order, but it was absolutely delicious and definitely left me feeling cleansed before devouring my curry.

The staff are extremely friendly and attentive, and it made our quick lunch feel incredibly special – like a real treat. They are at hand to offer advice regarding the dishes, and nothing is too much trouble for them –  everything done with a megawatt smile.

I’ve been raving about the restaurant ever since, I can’t wait to take Si there, he’ll absolutely love it. Whether you pick individual dishes or order a selection to share amongst your party you will not be disappointed, their truly is something for everyone on their menu and you will feel like you’ve been transported to an exclusive 5 star Lebanese hotel for the time you’re in their lovely company. PS. look at the friendly chef waving goodbye above!

My Purchases

First up this floral top from And Other Stories. I love the shortened sleeves, the sweet tie detail at the neck and the fact you can tuck it in for a more fitted look, or have it untucked (which is what you want for generous lunches like ours at Maison du Mezze.)

As soon as I saw these boots in H&M I knew it was a done deal. I love an ankle boot because they’re perfect if you are walking about all day (at meetings, press days etc) but then have to head straight to an evening do (like a screening, gig or premiere).  The heel height is ideal for me too. I can’t handle any higher without my wincing face being a huge giveaway of the severe pain I’m in, or my weak ankles giving way.

My final purchases was from Zara, and not at all what I envisioned I’d buy. I had planned to buy a new faux leather day bag or some trousers in a fit I don’t own yet. Then my hand stroked the artificial suede of this jacket as I passed by (and my fingers enjoyed it), so I thought I’d try it on before moving past the rail and on to a frilled Coachella appropriate jacket in front of me. As soon as I put it on Mum said ‘Oooh that’s very nice’ – I was skeptical because Mum saying it’s nice doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the kind of ‘nice’ you want to wear. However when I looked in the mirror I thought ‘damn, she’s right’. Most trenches are made of a thick canvas type material, so they feel a bit rigid and formal to wear, but this is soft and drapes over the body rather elegantly. It’s going to be so useful and works for both casual and dressy outfits, I’m so so pleased with it. It got it’s first full outing on Mother’s Day at a special screening of Paddington 2 at The Soho Hotel. Someone actually asked me where I got it from and said they were going to head to Zara to get it straight after the film finished.

Cheers to another great day of shopping at The Bentall Centre…same again next week?

Thank you to The Bentall Centre for collaborating with me on this post. Let me know if you have visited and what you think…..

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