The A/W 2014 Art Agenda

From a chance to get up close with the legendary Marilyn series to the much-anticipated Zaha Hadid-designed WOMEN FASHION POWER, plan your travels and cultural activities for the coming months with this selection of big name global exhibitions. 

andy warhol

What do Andy Warhol, Christian Louboutin and Cecily Brown have in common? Their artistic handiwork will all be on display in not-to-miss exhibitions this season. Spend your September staring at stilettos, October observing pop art and November noting political paintings. Read more: Harpers Bazaar.

The Power of Smiling

Only one-third of us smile more than 20 times a day. Unbelievable. And yet smiling reduces stress and helps us live a longer, happier life – amongst other things. It’s time to get smiling people!

Ron Gutman reviews a raft of studies about smiling, and reveals some surprising results. Did you know your smile can be a predictor of how long you’ll live — and that a simple smile has a measurable effect on your overall well-being? Prepare to flex a few facial muscles as you learn more about this evolutionarily contagious behavior. See more: TED.

Dining in Style

If we had to choose one word to sum up The Goring? Actually we’d choose two: just so. From the charming staff and faultless concierges to the beautifully manicured gardens and elegant suites, it’s all quite, quite lovely.

The goring hotel

And while you’ll no doubt have heard tell of the luxury hotel’s legendary afternoon tea, you might not be au fait with The Goring’s restaurant. After all, hotel restaurants can be tricky things; it’s rare that one makes sense within the context of the other. You’ve had the Best Night’s Sleep Ever in a dream of a luxurious suite, only to find that the scanty excuse for continental breakfast doesn’t quite measure up. Or there’s a jarring misbrand: the slick, modern restaurant doesn’t really match the quaint charm of the hotel’s sleeping quarters. Of course, this is absolutely not the case at The Goring.

Salt Marsh Lamb

For the first time in 15 years, there’s a new chef in situ, making The Goring’s dining room as much of a draw as an overnight stay. And – ahem – a slightly more economical way of testing out the hotel’s hospitality too… Michelin-pedigree chef Shay Cooper joins The Goring from The Bingham, having cut his teeth at The Vineyard at Stockcross and worked as Head Chef at Olga Polizzi’s Endsleigh House. And Cooper won’t be allowing himself – or The Goring – to rest on their laurels: “I am here to make a mark, we want a kitchen that is ambitious, rather than content.   We are cooking modern British food with personality – as befits The Goring – but food that is rooted in sensibility.  It’s all about restraint.”

Eggs Drumkilbo

Cooper’s deft touch has resulted in an elegant, imaginative and refined menu – it’s the very best of British, with the sophistication you’d expect from The Goring. Signature dishes include the famous Eggs Drumkilbo (the Queen Mum’s favourite, if you please) and the classic lobster omelette, served with moreish chips triple-cooked in duck fat. As well as the restaurant’s classic roasts, hand-carved at your table, there are daily specials such as Salt Marsh lamb with rosemary jus, fish pie served with English peas and fennel, and the quintessentially British steak and kidney pudding. Classic dishes, yes, but prepared, cooked and served with finesse. Just so, if you like…

Plaice Fillet

For more information and to book, see The Goring’s website or telephone +44 (0) 20 7396 9000.

The Fashion Finds

Don’t get us wrong, we love Net-A-Porter as much as the next credit-card-flexing fashionista. But sometimes, shopping the etailer’s gigantic selection of stylish goodies can be a little bit overwhelming. There’s just SO MUCH amazing stuff on there. So we are really quite delighted with N-A-P’s new Finds section:

Je M'En Fous Bikinis

“A unique curation of ever changing pieces – discovered by our buyers on their travels across the globe. Gems that you won’t want to miss – bags to tote, dresses to dance in, jewelry that everyone will want and much more. These are buy now, treasure forever finds and we can’t promise they will be here for long.”All Things Fabulous

Exciting eh? We’ll be checking back regularly to explore the buying team’s latest finds… Right now we’re in lust with these fantastic printed shorts from All Things Fabulous.… And then there’s the vintage-inspired rock and roll tees from MadeWorn – perfect styled with a tailored blazers or worn as weekend wear with denim cut-offs…. Other new labels not to be missed: Muzungu Sisters‘ statement embellished totes, Italian brand Je M’En Fous‘ super sexy bikinis, Shore Projects‘ slick watches and Finnish designer Minna Parikka‘s adorable bunny ear sneakers.

MadeWorn

Shop Net-A-Porter’s Finds selection online here.

How to Motivate Yourself

Are those tasks staring back at you from your to-do list? And yet, somehow you just can’t quite motivate yourself to do any of them…. Believe it or not, there’s one essential – and scientifically proven – step we’re all missing out. 

motivation

You make goals… but then you procrastinate. You write a to-do list… but then you don’t follow through. And this happens again and again and again. Seriously, what’s the problem? Read more: TIME.

No Time to Think

Why have we become too busy to stop and think? What’s the result of avoiding our worries, concerns and negative thoughts?

thinking

One of the biggest complaints in modern society is being overscheduled, overcommitted and overextended. Ask people at a social gathering how they are and the stock answer is “super busy,” “crazy busy” or “insanely busy.” Nobody is just “fine” anymore. And if there is ever a still moment for reflective thought, out comes the mobile device. Read more: New York Times.

RIH Drinks

Enjoying a cooling cocktail on a summer evening has to be one of life’s greatest pleasures. Nothing too complicated mind, this isn’t the time for faffing about with unusual ingredients or measuring equipment. From the Watermelon Refresher to a summery Rosé Sangria Spritz, these are the cocktails you’ll find us sipping at sundown…

summer cocktails

This summer is all about the spritz. Long drinks that aren’t too high in alcohol, and that have a few gentle bubbles to tickle the taste buds, are a refreshing way to start the evening (and slightly less precipitous than a martini). They are also good for gatherings – barbecues, school fêtes, pre-dinner drinks, watching a game of cricket – because they can be made and poured quickly en masse. Read more: The Telegraph.

The Scent of Summer

Pretty packaging – check. Deeply hydrating ingredients – check. Summery scent – check. Since it launched ten years ago, Elemis’ Frangipani Monoi Oil has carried off awards too numerous to name and become a staple of beauty editors everywhere. In celebration of the anniversary, Elemis unveiled another exotic bodycare treat: Frangipani Monoi Body Cream.

Elemis Frangipani Monoi Body Cream

Generally we find body moisturising about as interesting as trying to understand cricket or watching paint dry, but anointing oneself with Frangipani Monoi Body Cream is actually rather lovely. Made with Tahitian monoi oil, the delicate fragrance is what we imagine might be the scent of a tropical island at dusk, the sun setting over the ocean – and it lingers on the skin too. Easily absorbed, it’s enriched with nourishing macadamia and rich sesame oil, leaving skin supple, smooth and moisturised. Warning: this may cause you to smell yourself repeatedly – this is completely normal, and no cause for concern.

Elemis Frangipani Monoi Body Cream is available to buy online here.

Jewellery & Justice

We’ve long been fans of Finchittida Finch‘s exquisite jewellery, but with their latest collection the talented design duo are taking things one step further. Not content with creating their signature ornate statement pieces, Finchittida Finch have teamed up with MAG (Mines Advisory Group): a global humanitarian charity which clears live weapons, explosives and bombs left by conflict. Via the long-term partnership with MAG, every purchase helps bring safety to places affected by war. So far, so political.

Finchittida Finch empress collection

However, look a little closer at the campaign images for Finchittida Finch’s A/W 2014 collection and you might just notice something about the model. Aside from the fact that she’s absolutely, show-stoppingly beautiful, she’s actually got what the fashion industry would consider a fairly substantial imperfection. But rather than covering up Li-Ann‘s scar, the designers chose to make this the moment to make another statement, really accepting and embracing her imperfection.

Finchittida Finch

“Li-Ann had no qualms about her scar but asked if it would be a problem for us. Our automatic reaction was to say “don’t worry, we can airbrush it out.” Then it hit us how damaging those words were, no one should be made to feel ashamed over their ‘imperfections’. We decided to make a feature of Li-Ann’s scar, to show that there’s nothing wrong with ‘imperfections’. The whole team including Li-Ann felt it would be a great message.”

Finchittida Finch AW 2014

Pow! The world needs more brave, courageous designers like the Finchittida Finch twins.

For more information, see the Finchittida Finch website

The Beginner’s Guide to Sleep

Sleep. We all need it, and most of us probably aren’t getting quite enough. But how much do you actually understand sleep? Sleep debt, sleep deprivation and sleep cycles – making sense of sleep will help you sleep better.

getting better sleep

Why are you feeling so sleep deprived? Here are some practical tips for mastering your sleep and having more energy. You owe it to yourself to develop better sleep habits. Your body and mind will thank you for it. Read more: Entrepreneur.