Tag Archives: fashion

Travel diaries -Discovering Africa Sierra Leone – Independence day weekend (lantern Parade)

Am thrilled to be celebrating independence day with my Sierra Leonean friends.  It’s a long weekend and celebrations start with watching the Lanterns at the city centre.

I was not sure what to expect but my host made  a fuss about not taking our phones or valuable’s with us. This made me wonder about the safety. 

I was advised to wear covered shoes to avoid having my toe’s stepped on and to dress down and blend in. No problem! Am 6ft tall and blending is what I do. Lol. 

I kept my dressing simple and put on minimal makeup.

The lantwen show was supposed to start at the Cutting Tree. I am told that this used to be the location of the slave trade. Slaves were taken from Sierra Leone to Banana Island.

The streets were hiving with people. Its like the whole of Freetown was gathered on the street. I would liken this to Nottinghill Carnival except it was in the middle of the night(11pm), there was mess music and more people milling around being very loud. 

I felt very unsettled and just couldn’t get into the grove of things.  I saw lots of kids and was so concerned about there safety. 

After much waiting around we saw 2 poorly constructed floats pass by. ….😩😕😯.

I couldn’t decide if I was more disappointed or confused. At this point I was ready to go.   I was told that through the night various other lanterns/floats would pass and there would be a price for the best float. 

We headed home at approximately 1.30am. The worse part of the night is that I couldn’t take any pictures while out and we came home to NO light !😭😭😭😭

This is a very tired and reluctant Ijay. Nonetheless, I can say I experienced watching the lantern on SL independance day. 

My outfit is pretty basic 

Basic Tee – Primark 

Black high waisted jeans – Dorothy Perkins 

Trainers- Nike 

Kimono -Zara
Thanks for reading to the end. Be sure to follow me on Instagram for regular updates @ijayheavens I post there regularly. 

See you soon. 

X❤

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Travel diaries -Discovering Africa Sierra Leone lookbook -day 4

I have noticed that most of the lovely venues and restaurants that I have been to are owned by foreigners.  I am pleasee that foreigners want to invest in Africa as it’s brings growth.   However my prayer is that my people (Africa as a whole) will be united and achieve greater heights. 
We started the day very late and made our way to Lakka Beach.  I have never been to the beach so late. We arrived at approximately 9pm.

 I am glad that I didn’the let my fears and worries get the better of me because I was able to experience the wonderful breeze. I listened to the waves and enjoyed the feel of the cool sand on my feet. 

We ended up at the palm Lakka beach. The owners Peter and Abby were so welcoming. I had my first grilled fish here. It was tasty and well worth the wait.

 My only wish is to return here during the day. My eyes can’t wait to take in all the beauty.

This maxi dress was purchased from Asos Tall.  I Love the fit and grecian style. The long side split adds a little character to it.  Tall girls want there maxi dresses long but this dress was incredibly long. I had to hold it up most of the night. 

Thanks for reading to the end. Be sure to follow me on Instagram for regular updates @ijayheavens I post there regularly. 

See you soon. 

X❤

Travel diaries -Discovering Africa Sierra Leone lookbook -day 3 pt2

There is no doubt on my mind that Sierra Leoneans love to live and enjoy life.  This country has so much history.  From the war that took place approx 17 years ago to the Ebola crisis. I was shock to hear a local say that the Ebola crisis was more devastating than the war. 

My heart bleeds for the people here. I don’t know where they get their resilience from after so many set backs.

My host was keen to show me how they dance their stress and worries away. 

So we hit the night Club 232! 

Apparently, this venue has only been opened a few month. It’s located along the beach front at Lumley.  

We managed to pull some strings, jumped some queues and landed in the VIP area. 

The DJ played a great selection of music.  I heard lots of Nigerian music so I felt right at home  😊.

We danced till our feet couldn’t anymore. I loved this experience, however if there is one thing I could change…. it would be for there to be no smoking in the club 😥. 

I am wearing the following 

Velvet dress- River Island 

Black Shoes – Primark 

Handbag – Tory Birch 

Thanks for reading to the end. Be sure to follow me on Instagram for regular updates @ijayheavens I post there regularly. 

See you soon. 

X❤

Travel diaries -Discovering Africa Sierra Leone lookbook -day 3 pt 1

Hey guys… things have been pretty non stop.  My host has been so fabulous and her friends and family have gone the extra mile to ensure that am having a great time.  

I was so tired from the concert.  Am begining to understand that Sierra Leoneans like to party till the early hours of the morning. 

After a very lazy morning we headed out to a place called Family Kingdom for a kiddies party. Not sure how to describe this place.  It is almost like a hybrid resort with guest houses, pool,  function areas and kids play areas. 

I really should never have worn this dress. The neck line is wayyy too high for the heat. But you live and you learn, plus I liked the low back.

Dress- Marks and Spencer 

Mules – Primark 

Handbag – Zara

Thanks for reading to the end. Be sure to follow me on Instagram for regular updates @ijayheavens I post there regularly. 

See you soon. 

X❤

DIY- Making a Kimono Jacket

Hi Guys,

I have recently had the urge to be more creative.  So I embarked on my first DIY sewing project to make a Kimono Jacket.

To start with I went fabric shopping.  This was so much fun guys. So much colours and textures out there.  I don’t know much about fabric compositions but something flowy works well for Kimono’s.  I also went for something with florals since this is totally in trend.

Once you have your fabric, you will need the following:

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  • 2.5 yards of Fabric ( buy more fabric if you want the Kimono to be bigger or longer)
  • Sewing machine
  • Measuring tape
  • Fabric marker or chalk
  • Thread
  • Pins
  • Scissors 

Begin by folding your fabric into two. Do this along the longer side of the fabric.

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Decide on how big you want the Kimono, then mark iron and and cut downwards of the folded edge.  I wanted an over-sized look so I measure mine at 36 inches ( This came out super big so I ended up taking 2 inches off).  When cutting ensure you still have enough fabric for your sleeves.

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With the remaining fabric measure and cut out your sleeves.  I wanted wide and long sleeves these measured  13 inches on the half.  You will need to cut two fabrics this size for both sleeves.

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You should have the following pieces of fabric cut now.  You will notice that I cut a slit in the bigger piece of the fabric.  This is the main body of the kimono and the slit will form the front openings/ sides.  Do not throw away left over fabrics.  This can be used to make a belt or pockets for your Kimono.IMG_2859

I decided to work on the sleeves first. On each piece, I pinned the two edges inside out and sewed.   As an additional step I ironed my seams open.  This helps with getting that great finish.

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I currently do not have an over-locker so I had to double fold and sew all the raw edges on the Kimono to avoid fraying.  On the sleeves you only need to do this to one edge as the other edge will be joined to the main body of the Kimono.

You are now ready to attach the sleeves.  Insert the sleeves into the Kimono and pin into place. Take care to ensure that the sleeves are the right way in to avoid having them inside out once you have finished sowing.

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You should now have the basics of your Kimono.

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I decided to cut the neck line as above to add some shaping to the collar.

Finally sew the sides together and neatly bind all your raw edges.  And your DONE!

Oh I added pockets and a belt with left over fabrics.

All in all I found this Kimono fairly straight forward to make and I am so thrilled with what I have achieved.  One of my biggest challenge was in binding the neck edge because of the collar curve( I could really do with some tips on how to do a better job of this in the future).  I am also still working on making my sewing straight but am sure a little more practice will straighten this out.  In hindsight I wish I used fabric that was printed on both sides.  Am not keen on seeing the plain side showing as am wearing the Kimono.

Ok so…. This is the finished product!   Still not sure how an going to wear this on holiday but I put this look together just to show you.

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Thanks for reading to the end.  Please let me know what you think of this look.

If you have any questions or comments you can put them in the comments box below.

Lets be friends – Follow me on Instagram @Ijaykheavens

Outfit details

Playsuit from Zara

Nude Sandals from Marks and Spencer.

xoxox

New rules for layering 

Does what to wear during winter make you want to pull out your hair too? 

It kills me to think weather over fashion.. why can’t I have it all?  

Recently, I have found a new way to layer clothes to stay warm and chic. 

Despite what you might think. … this is the time to stock up on awkward midi and long dresses.. yes midi dresses. By layering them over skinny jeans or wide leg trouser, you get to make the most out of it in the winter and the summer. The joy of having a multi-seasonal wardrobe.

There are a few simple rules :

  • Opt for loose fitting and floaty dresses. Midi’s and shirt dresses will change your layering game 👌
    • Experiment with colours, prints and textures. Dresses that contrast your jeans or trousers are ideal.
    • Feel free to seal the layers together with a trench or maxi coat.

    The final rule is to have fun with layering.  This is truly effectless chic at its finest.

    Outfit details 

    -grey coat  – Newlook tall ( currently on sale)

    -grey crop top- Marks and Spencer 

    -Rust Asymmetric hemail vest dress- Marks and Spencer

    -High waist skinny jeans – Tesco 

    -Peep toes Ankle boots -Dorothy Perkins 

    -Body Bag-Zara
    Thank for your time.  See you soon. 😚

    Stat connected with me @ijaykheavens 

    X

    Holiday Season Pj’s /lounge looks

    Holiday Season Pj's /lounge looks

    ASOS clothing
    £34 – asos.com

    Michael Kors gold pendant
    fashionette.co.uk

    Infinity scarf
    £8.22 – yoins.com

    Faux fur blanket
    urbanoutfitters.com

    Contemporary home decor
    £40 – cittadesign.com

    Arched floor lamp
    wayfair.co.uk

    Serving bowl
    £22 – etsy.com

    Metal wall art
    £16 – kirklands.com

    Drinkware
    notonthehighstreet.com

    statement earrings

    statement earrings

    Kimberly McDonald pink stud earrings
    £10,475 – farfetch.com

    Marni earrings
    £295 – nathalieschuterman.com

    Latelita pink gold earrings
    £275 – popmap.com

    14k pearl earrings
    £105 – pearlparadise.com

    Erica Lyons silvertone earrings
    £9.04 – belk.com

    Christmas stud earrings
    £8.87 – amazon.com

    Charlotte russe earrings
    £4.84 – charlotterusse.com

    Crystal christmas earrings
    £0.08 – smile.amazon.com

    lastminute. com gift ideas

    lastminute. com gift ideas

    Dolce Gabbana white leather handbag
    £2,250 – matchesfashion.com

    Miguel Ases 14 karat gold earrings
    £140 – halsbrook.com

    Fitbit special occasion jewelry
    £120 – nordstrom.com

    Dolce Gabbana metallic headphone
    £4,990 – mytheresa.com

    Givenchy lipstick
    £29 – neimanmarcus.com

    Serge lutens perfume
    £120 – saksfifthavenue.com

    Opi nail polish
    £5.67 – sleekhair.com

    Jo Malone apple candle
    £53 – orchardmile.com

    Nest Fragrances reed diffuser set
    £34 – beautybar.com

    Glass home decor
    £24 – lenox.com

    Black work basics to Christmas party wears

    Black work basics to Christmas party wears

    Zimmermann dress
    £245 – zimmermannwear.com

    Emilio De La Morena purple top
    £485 – matchesfashion.com

    Yves Saint Laurent cropped jacket
    £2,225 – matchesfashion.com

    Dorothee Schumacher blue coat
    £1,510 – modaoperandi.com

    Over coat
    £290 – metisu.com

    Miss Selfridge pants
    £49 – missselfridge.com

    Aquazzura grey pumps
    £725 – neimanmarcus.com

    Kenneth Cole lace up booties
    £135 – macys.com

    Missguided high heel boots
    £58 – missguidedus.com

    Chanel purse
    £3,955 – portero.com

    Yves Saint Laurent handbag purse
    £1,790 – neimanmarcus.com

    Serpui man bag
    £270 – halsbrook.com

    Loren Olivia faux pearl necklace
    £16 – c21stores.com

    Paraben free lipstick
    £16 – princesspolly.com

    Mineral eyeshadow
    £13 – etsy.com

    WALL map wall art
    fabricsandpapers.com

    By Lassen square picture frame
    £62 – amara.com