Books

A walking portrait of my hood



Folk Navaz Batliwalla

My Facebook feeds are currently full of friends waxing lyrical about the joys of coastal living, having fled London for the simple life. Me? I’m not quite there yet. London’s where I was born and grew up and as a West Londoner I’ve not strayed far from my childhood stomping ground.

In particular I’m passionate about the pocket of London where Portobello meets Golborne Road. This little local stretch is relatively unknown by the masses. You won’t find hordes of tourists and bloggers descending here for their selfies and outfit posts, but you will find a genuine melting pot of character and style.

You can people watch in the flea market, pick up an antique mirror from Les Couilles du Chien, delight in the curiosities of Kokon To Zai, and make a pilgrimage to Rellik, the famous vintage store that specialises in collectable Westwood, Galliano and Comme. Foodies can enjoy a Palestinian feast at Maramia, fish & chips at George’s or queue up for a pastel de nata at Lisboa, the Portuguese coffee shop that’s a local institution.

I gave the folks at Folk a little local walking tour of my hood a few weeks ago (more…)



Deep cuts



cuts book Steve Brooks Gimme 5

It’s been a bit of a whirlwind month for CUTS, my hairdresser and London landmark of sorts. It’s a kind of ‘if you know, you know’ thing; it’s been around forever but was never treated as a ‘brand’, rather a word of mouth hangout that does very good hair. (Side note: they came out with the phrase ‘You Look Good’ long before anyone else.)

CUTS started in Kensington Market during the post-punk years, then progressed to Kensington Church Street (I would pass it on the way to school) and ended up in Soho where it’s been for a couple of decades. It’s where I went when I decided to go short in the early 90s. (more…)



Still not bored of French girl magic



In Paris by Jeanne Damas and Lauren Bastide

Here’s a delicious new book celebrating cool, understated Parisiennes. If you enjoyed my book, The New Garconne (here), I think you’ll love In Paris: 20 Women on Life in the City of Light. It’s full of voyeuristic intimate photo profiles of everyday Parisian women, with photos taken by the quintessential Paris babe, Jeanne Damas. (more…)