Positive fashion: L/Uniform bags

L/Uniform bag of Daphne Hezard by Elise Toide

Who doesn’t love an Instagram rabbit hole? After Monocle magazine’s Daphne Hezard posted one of the pictures from my book (of Hezard’s cute deskscape – above), the co-founder of her lush red L/Uniform satchel commented, which led me to her own very fetching Instagram account.

One thing led to another, as these things do and I wound up on the L/Uniform website. What’s so great about this brand is that as well as being beautifully designed (think utilitarian canvas totes and pochettes with contrast leather edging and initial monogramming should you desire), everything is made by hand with love and care.

The L/Uniform website is wonderfully detailed, which I think is so important for smaller brands. To invest in buying from a small brand, you want the least friction, you want trust, provenance and great service. You want excellence! I love all the explanations of how things are made, where they’re made (they have workshops in France and Portugal), plus lots of pics of the masters and mistresses in action.

L/Uniform bags







L/Uniform prides itself on its meaningful, sustainable practices which these days is just as important as a sexy looking product. Its current UK stockist is Dover Street Market, but I imagine it’s only a matter of time before it’s in Liberty, The Shop at Bluebird and The Conran Shop…

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl/Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Elise Toide; L/Uniform
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my cookies policy here


The New Garconne contributor: Kasia Bobula

Polly Morgan The New Garconne photo by Kasia Bobola

The first week of my book, The New Garconne (buy it here) has been nothing short of a blinder. I’ve had such lovely support from friends, comments on social media, feedback from complete strangers who have bought the book (imagine!) (more…)

Bouchra Jarrar for Lanvin SS17 – first impressions

Bouchra Jarrar for Lanvin SS17. photo by Chloe Denzen for Dazed

Admittedly Bouchra Jarrar’s debut collection for Lanvin ss17 didn’t have the gasp factor of Raf Simons’ for Dior. But I still loved the overall direction. That’s easy because I like what Jarrar does anyway, and I’m more of a monochrome trousers girl, than a jewel-coloured dress girl (even though I adore Alber Elbaz). (more…)

The New Garconne – what’s it all about?

The New Garconne book Navaz Batliwalla Disneyrollergirl
Three years ago I had a lightbulb moment. “Why doesn’t someone do a coffee table book on women with ‘gentlewoman style’?” I said to Mr DRG. Nothing new, as we have one of these “why doesn’t someone do/design/invent…” conversations at least thrice a week.

“You should do it,” he said, most likely as a conversation stopper. I filed it in the part of my brain marked, ‘good ideas that will never see the light of day’, and started a Pinterest board instead.

Fast forward to, um, today and the lightbulb moment has trasitioned into a real, living, actually-on-the-shelves physical thing that you can hold. Guys, I did it. I wrote a book – and it’s released today!

So The New Garconne – How To Be A Modern Gentlewoman is a tribute to the kind of cool, discerning, grown up tomboys that I admire. I’m not a fan of putting people on pedestals so I won’t use words like goddess, icon or girl boss (gag) but just say that the women I profiled are soooo inspiring and relatable yet have that unknown quantity that makes them a bit enigmatic. I interviewed them in person or by phone and then had them photographed Apartamento-style in their home, office or studio. That is, without fancy styling or props, just as is. If you’re as nosy as me, you’re going to love visually rooting around Bella Freud’s studio, on Caroline Issa’s desk, or in Laurence Dacade’s shoe-filled bathroom.

Hmmm, who sits on a chair like this…?
The New Garconne book Navaz Batliwalla Disneyrollergirl

I loved this garconne so much, I made a film about her
The New Garconne - Phyllis Wang by Elise Toide

This interviewee was so hard to track down, it made me even more determined (it was totally worth it)…
The New Garconne book Navaz Batliwalla Disneyrollergirl - pic by Max Dworkin

Alongside the interviews are pages that give more specific info on where to buy the perfect examples of enduring ‘garconne’ classics and why. And we also have a great street style section that shows achievable ways to emulate the look. I’m glad to say that the message of the book is not all about buying new stuff, but shopping your closet, reworking vintage or heirloom pieces and tapping into your own gentlewoman style. The book is also not just limited to style. Being a ‘new garconne’ is about a way of living, being independent-minded, creative and risk-taking.

The New Garconne book Navaz Batliwalla Disneyrollergirl

The New Garconne – How to be a Modern Gentlewoman is available from today in all the usual bookshops including Waterstones, Foyles, WHSmith and fabulous arty places like the Tate Modern bookshop, where one of my friends has already seen it. If you see it (or buy it!), please let me know on social media (@Disneyrollrgirl on Twitter and @Disneyrollergirl on Instagram) and tag it #thenewgarconne. And do let me know what your favourite bits are…

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl/Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Kasia Bobula; Elise Toide; Max Dworkin; Disneyrollergirl
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my cookies policy here