In typical Londoner fashion, I instinctively put aside whatever it is that I'm doing to step outside as soon as a sunny day presents itself. It hurts too much to waste a beautiful day cooped up indoors, especially considering how gloomy the weather is most of the time. The last couple of weeks have been exceptionally gorgeous with the abundance of blossoms everywhere (sponsored by a very generous springtime) and this is the first of many looks to come that I've shot in London's stunning parks.
On this afternoon, Trishna and I visited Broadway Market, where we stuffed our faces with street food and fresh fruits before deciding that we definitely needed to walk it out. We strolled along Regents Canal, trying our best not to get knocked down by cyclists, till we arrived at the ridiculously scenic Victoria Park. After an hour of soaking in the sun, close encounters with goose droppings, running away from bees and getting our stuff slobbered over by a naughty pug named Stewart, it was time to head back and hit the books. Because life *insert shrug emoji here*.
It's an absolute thrill when you find a piece of vintage clothing that fits oh so perfectly in your closet. There's something a little romantic about it, no? It's almost as if this item, manufactured decades ago, was predestined to eventually end up in your hands. Yes, I'm aware of how filmi I sound... Clearly I watch too many Bollywood movies.
Back to my point - I want to share a mini guide of my favourite vintage finds and where in London I picked them up from.
This particular trench coat that I'm wearing in this set of photos was found a few months ago at one of Mile End Vintage's pound sales. As the name suggests, nothing is over a pound (£). Yes, that's right - £1. It's a damn steal for a garment in such perfect condition. I've seen commercial vintage retailers sell clothes in far worse condition for upwards of £20. Stay clear of those places, folks. Although you do have to manoeuvre quite a bit through a sea of clothes during the special sales, it's totally worth it when you find pieces like these.
Also located in Mile End is 2nd Time Around, where I found this vintage Burberry leather jacket, probably made in the late 1800s as it carries the "Burberrys" logo. More than clothes, they have a very interesting collection of furniture that many of you could appreciate. This magnificent fur coat from the 1930s was purchased from D. & A. Abrahams - an exquisite antique store with an inexpensive curation of items. How I managed to stop myself from buying everything off their racks, shelves and walls is a mystery to me. And finally, every tourist's favourite - Brick Lane Market. There I managed to find this casual pair of sunglasses and this gorgeous cat-eyed pair. Are you in love yet?
Photo assistance - Trishna
Wearing: Zara - Sweater // Cos - Trousers // Michael Kors - Sneakers // Vintage - Trench coat
As an illusory spring teases London with deceptively sun-drenched afternoons, it's only natural for me to yearn for those sultry days spent in the south of Spain last summer - wandering in earnest, trying different foods everyday and not having to worry about a vitamin D deficiency. It was an admittedly rushed trip and we found ourselves hopping from city to city like a butterfly with a voracious appetite. Seville was one of the places where I wish we could have spent more time in, not only to truly delve into its rich history but to explore its urban marvels as well. There is no doubt in my mind that I will be visiting again... but until then, here's a visual recollection of Sevilla.
Life can be harsh and unforgiving sometimes. Perhaps this is why lately I've been so drawn towards capturing a more romantic essence in my photos. Unclear and spontaneous, light and aglow - like a dream sequence from an old film. In fact, shooting this story with Amisha and Tahira was like a dream. Both of them are visual artists - they understand the subtleties of light, perspective and anatomy. It's always so fascinating for me when I collaborate with others to see how they translate their skills across different mediums. It truly leaves me speechless. All I can say is that I'm truly grateful for the opportunity to work with these talented women.
And while in praise of talented women, a huge shoutout to Trishna and Nicole who have just launched an online platform for the Singaporean creatives - SWEE ZINE. The full editorial and my little ramble on spontaneity can be found there as well.
“Let there be no scales to weigh your un-known treasure;
And seek not the depths of your knowledge with staff or sounding line.
For self is a sea boundless and measureless.”
- Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet
Last spring, I drove down south with Melody to visit this breathtaking place - the Seven Sisters cliffs. Best two and a half hour drive ever. If you're ever traveling to London, you should definitely think about seeing the chalk cliffs.
Being surrounded by nature as far as the eye can see, with little trace of human presence, is without a doubt one of the most incredible sensations I've ever felt. We were really lucky that it was a quiet day and we got the entire beach to ourselves. It's exciting and makes your heart flutter, but at the same time instills tranquility in your soul. It's a reminder that harmony exists in this universe. It's a reminder that I am a small, ephemeral fixture on this land. And even smaller are my problems.
Looking out into the sea, I realise that it has no beginning, no end. Boundless. Despite the chaos of crashes and sprays of salt, it is inherently serene. Each flowing body of water is somehow connected to one another, and they connect the rest of the world. Like the unfathomable depth of the oceans, the potential each and every one of us hold inside ourselves knows no bounds.
Whatever we seek without, can be unearthed within.
Shot at Seven Sisters Country Park, Sussex.