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When I’m feeling out of sorts there is nothing like an exceptional scented candle to get me in the zone. With the transition from Summer to Autumn it’s time to wrap up warm prepare some comforting food and get cozy. A scented candle is mandatory to complete the cozy situation. I’m currently burning Darkwood by MAD et LEN which is the perfect scent for this time of year. It’s a slightly rich and aromatic scent which transports me to a stately home tucked away somewhere in the countryside. Notes of leather and smokey wood create a comforting atmosphere without being overtly heavy.

MAD et LEN is from France and the incredible packaging instantly elevates the brand to pure luxury. Each hand poured candle is housed in a hammered iron case with a black fumé finish. The fragrance is created using aged essential oils from Grasse that are stabilised in vegetable wax. There are a variety of fragrances to choose from and I’m already thinking about adding something else to my collection. Lighting one of these after a hectic day at work transports me to that zone, and then shortly after, all the stress is forgotten.

Disclaimer. Brands and PR agencies regularly send me products and clothes as samples. I only feature/wear/review the things that suit my personal style and that I enjoy using. What works for me may not work for you. To be on the safe side, try before you buy.

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It’s been a challenging week but I’m feeling happy and relaxed as the weekend approaches. Last week I started a 30 day yoga challenge on YouTube and it’s really good. I’ve dipped in and out of yoga over the years and doing it almost 7 days straight-I had one day off in between-I’m already feeling the difference in my posture and the way I walk. I used to be a hair colourist and many years bent over clients heads has played havoc with my posture. Obviously a class is ideal but it’s great to do it at home and classes are between 15-30 minutes, plus I’m embarrassingly inflexible so it’s nice to be alone! The channel is called Yoga with Adriene and she also has a blog. Brathwait sent me a watch which isn’t massively different to one I already own from Bering. This is rose gold which I really like in combination with the tan strap and white face. It’s a modern take on a classic style which usually works for me. The strap on my Bering watch isn’t holding up so well and as I don’t wear it everyday I’m slightly disappointed. The Brathwait appears to be better quality but I’m interested to see how the rose gold fairs overtime as it’s stainless steel underneath. I will let you know!

Willems Eyewear gave me some pieces recently and the glasses pictured are so cool but I’m not sure if I can pull them off! They are pretty big which I like I just need to find an outfit that brings it all together. For now they are sitting on my desk looking cute. Regular readers will know that I love oils for my skin, mostly because it gets dry and my face just drinks it up. However I still enjoy a cream moisturiser, I like a creamy texture and the whole process of applying the cream from a pot is just mmmmmmmmmmm. SAVUE is an online store in Germany (with an English translation and international shipping) with a unique selection of natural and organic skincare brands. This is still a niche sector and I find a lot of these stores sell the same things as everyone else. This store has managed to find some rare pieces that interest me. They have a brand called A.S Apothecary which has perfectly gender neutral packaging-thank god! The men/women thing is so stupid as our skin types are mostly not gender specific. Brands constantly try to recommend men’s products, often containing menthol which isn’t good for ANY skin because it’s a potential irritant that creates inflammation in the skin. No, no, no. I’m currently enjoying the A.S Apothecary Face Cream #5, soothing & restorative. This brand is all-natural and the moisturser sinks into the skin perfectly. A small amount offers light hydration which is great during the day. At night I like to apply a lot which feels heavy but disappears by morning leaving my skin super plumped and calm, kind of like a treatment or mask. They have a variety of products for different skin types. Read more about the brand here.

If you are into art and especially the art world then you will most likely love Seven Days In The Art World by Sarah Thornton. This book highlights the glamour, the pain and the nonsence that surrounds the art world. I read it about a year ago and liked it so much that I’m going to read it again.  Lastly, I have some cute prints from the book SHARE Scandinavia. This is a nice book for gifting or the coffee table at home. It contains lovely prints that can be torn out and shared. This week I posted a picture on Instagram hanging one of the prints on my own wall.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

James.

*Brands and PR agencies regularly send me products and clothes as samples. I only feature/wear/review the things that suit my personal style and that I enjoy using.

 

 

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As we approach the end of Friday afternoon I can feel everyone counting down the last hours before they can finish work and start the weekend. I have a few guilty pleasures on my desk that are keeping me occupied whilst I complete my tasks, without getting too distracted of course. One of the many things I miss about London is the newspaper supplements and every Friday there is ES Magazine which comes with The Evening Standard newspaper. I saved a copy from my recent trip to London and I’m checking out a tasty looking recipe by Jamie Oliver that I’d like to try over the weekend. I find the Rodin olio lusso face oil super comforting as it smells of jasmine which I love. A few drops of this has me dreaming of Sunday on the sofa. South Germany have created their own take on the French croissant and I love it. It’s still crispy on the outside with a soft fluffy center but the taste is slightly richer and it’s topped with toasted sesame seeds. Delicious.

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Do you remember the episode from Sex & The City where Carrie went to stay with Aiden at his lodge in the forest? What she imagined would be a romantic weekend at a rustic yet chic country house turned out to be a little to rustic and secluded for her liking. She didn’t last the weekend before rushing back to the city, heading to the nearest Starbucks followed by a martini at a rooftop bar.

In some ways this is how I felt when I relocated from Central London to the German countryside. I embraced the fresh air, dense forests and breathtaking landscapes but come Saturday night I craved dinner for 6 at Bistrotheque followed by never ending drinks at Shoreditch House. Recently I discovered a little slice of London in South Germany. I say that because this restaurant is so unique and vibrant that when I enter I feel as if I’m somewhere else. Before the owner Ellen transformed it into a restaurant the location of Wacholder was originally a house. The varying rooms have been decked out with tree branches and huge lanterns constructed out of white water colour paper which creates a cozy and whimsical vibe. Outdoors is a secluded garden which leads down to the river with a large red rowing boat and the occasional passing swan. During the summer there is the option to take the boat and head down the river for a quiet picnic. Much like Ellen, the food is a wild mix of flavors with lot’s of personality. It’s generally healthy with great quality wholesome ingredients and a menu that evolves daily. The combination of flavors and overall presentation reflect the restaurants quirky decor. As you’d expect this place is constantly booked. Recently I took some friends who were visiting from London and they felt like they were in Shoreditch. I found this funny as we definitely were not which becomes apparent as soon as we left and found ourselves in a sleepy German village. I plan to go back when the weather turns cooler and see how this small piece of magic transforms with the seasons.

Photography by Christian Roman for Lookin Good Feelin Fine.

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I thought it would be fun to add a new segment to the blog. WHAT’S HOT & WHAT’S NOT will be a selection of things I’m currently liking or disliking. Since I just got back from London this post will focus on things I experienced during the trip.

HOT

  • EASYJET The first European airline to offer super cheap, short haul flights soon became infamous for ridiculously-terrible-service. This has since changed and they now have friendly and professional staff who are more reasonable regarding carry on luggage.
  • TATE MODERN One of my favorite places in London somehow became 1 million times better. The new Switch House extension is finally open and boasts a 360-degree viewing tower with arguably the best views of London. There is a lovely coffee bar on the top level plus a restaurant lower down with vast new galleries and exhibition spaces. I’ve fallen in love with Tate all over again.
  • JAMIE OLIVER I can’t find a bad word to say about him. He went on a mission to reeducate school canteens so children can eat nutritious lunches instead of the previous fast food nightmares. During August he allowed children to eat for free in all of his Jamie’s Italian restaurants. His upscale restaurant 15 in Shoreditch is super nice and his recipe books match up to the hype. High five Jamie!

NOT

  • THE FAUX VLOGGER When you see a bunch of different YouTubers promoting the exact same product saying I just love it so much. Then you discover they are all represented by the same talent agency. Coincidence? Nope!
  • THE TINY MINI COFFEE I like a compact, creamy cappuccino that packs a punch but £3 for a thimble of flat white? I don’t think so.
  • THE PUG PRAM Pushchairs, prams or strollers as they say in the US. These are for human babies or human children. NOT FOR DOGS.