Myla and Davis, East Dulwich

Myla and Davis East Dulwich is a short walk from my flat, it is a local I feel lucky to have. This salon is one of three from owner Katya Davis, who also started up my favourite neighbourhood restaurants, Llewelyns in Herne Hill.

Myla and Davis

I visited one February afternoon for a hair cut and colour, and was amazed to find the salon completely full, despite it being a Winter weekday afternoon. Within minutes I was sitting at a comfortable mirror facing seat sipping a cup of tea and chatting to Polly, who was in charge of doing my hair.

Myla and Davis

Myla and Davis use a selection of Bumble & Bumble products, a brand which I have always found to be reliable haircare, but also great for creative styling. I umm-ed and ahh-ed as Polly talked me through all the different options. She was wonderfully patient and reassuring as I tried to decide between a ginger transformation, subtle low lights or just returning to my natural hue.

Eventually we decided on a rich red-brown shade to moisturise and nourish my strands while also covering stray grey hairs and adding a depth of colour to my hair. A dramatic colour change but nothing too radical. I knew I didn’t want too much off the length, so Polly opted for a inch off to keep it healthy looking but still easy to tie up.

Myla and Davis

During my time at Myla and Davis East Dulwich I was kept in constant supply of tea and brilliantly gossipy magazines… which is exactly how I want to spend my time at the hairdresser. Polly worked quickly and methodically through my hair, explaining everything as she coloured and cut my hair.

The best part, as always was a thorough wash and head massage at the high-tech horizontal chairs. Polly also gave my hair an Olaplex treatment which (especially when paired with a colour treatment) adds strength and hydration to worn out hair.

After a few hours at the salon my hair was bouncy, light and rich with colour. Anyone living in South London should take advantage of the great Myla and Davis boutique salons.

More information and book a cut, colour or treatment at Myla and Davis here.

(I was a guest of Myla and Davis.)

Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams‎, V&A

This year the V&A has welcomed another legendary fashion exhibition to its galleries. Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams showcases the designs of the world famous fashion house, from 1947 to the present day… documenting the stories and people behind the dramatic garments.

dior

This exhibition is the largest ever UK presentation of Dior, the grand rooms of the V&A are filled with precious sketches, accessories and dresses, all giving an amazing insight into the genius of this couturier. The V&A team was led by fashion and textiles curator Oriole Cullen and set designer Nathalie Crinière, and together they reimagined the previous Dior exhibition, Christian Dior: Couturier du Rêve, organised by the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. This show, however, features many more rediscovered haute couture pieces, every single garment in the show is handmade.

Dior

It is quite startling to see so many couture dresses all in one place, 70 years worth of Dior lines every wall. Amongst the pieces are dresses worn by Princess Margaret on her 21st birthday and Jennifer Lawrence’s red carpet couture dress, and there are others you may recognise from magazine covers or iconic events. Princess Margaret was a fan and client of Christian Dior and it is clear he relished the opportunity to design for her. The style of Britain very much influenced and fascinated Christian Dior, he loved the British women’s fashion, their contradicting tweed outfits and ballgowns.

Later in the show, the other artistic directors of Dior are given a chance to shine, and it is amazing to see how Christian Dior’s thoughts and motifs are still so alive in the current day designs.

Through this show viewers are given a look into the world behind the dresses. We learn about Mr Dior himself and how his thoughts and processes defined, and still define, the brand Dior is today.

Designer of Dreams‎ continues until Sunday 14 July, book tickets here.

Things to do in Charleston

This trip to Charleston was my first experience of America’s Southern States… despite only being a 90 minute flight from New York (making it the perfect weekend getaway), Charleston feels completely different, a relaxed and friendly city with an important history, beautiful buildings and celebrated food scene. Of course it was the latter that I spent most of my three days in Charleston exploring, but I also had time to dip into the cultural scene, taste some locally distilled bourbon and stay in a couple of the cities best-loved hotels.

Charleston

To Stay

The Dewberry – This modern hotel is a popular choice with stylish travellers. Situated in the downtown district of town, the hotel has 155 luxurious bedrooms, a wonderful restaurant and great bar.

Belmond Charleston Place – Belmond Charleston Place is an easy, relaxing and indulgent place to stay in the centre of the city. The renowned hotel has restaurants, shops and a glorious spa on site for guests to enjoy. The bedrooms are very spacious and the attentive service ensures you’ll have a memorable stay.

Charleston

 To Eat

Leon’s – Housed in a converted auto body shop this celebrated eatery is the place to go for irresistible classic fried chicken, hush puppies and oysters.

Little Jack’s Tavern – Little Jack’s is a little laid-back tavern on King Street. The restaurant is known for its burger which is often voted one of the best in the US. Paired with herb fries it makes for a typically American, yummy meal.

Xiao Bao Biscuit – XBB was opened in 2012 by Josh Walker, Duolan Walker-Li, and Joey Ryan and is housed in a former gas station. The menu is inspired by their travels through Asia with dishes showing influences of China, Vietnam, Thailand, Korea, Japan and Taiwan. Both the lunch and dinner menus change almost daily, but are always reasonably priced and addictively tasty.

Sugar Bakeshop – This quaint, tiny bakery is constantly full of admiring customers. The shop smells divine and you’ll always be greeted with a smile from the enthusiastic staff. Choose from the many delectable treats… we enjoyed the light and fluffy cupcakes and rich comforting chocolate cookies.

Lewis Barbecue – Whilst you are in Charleston you must try BBQ’ed food… everyone recommended Lewis or Rodney Scott’s to us. We opted for Lewis, a huge restaurant on the outskirts of town specialising in Beef Brisket and Hot Guts Sausage (it’s better than it sounds). Owner John Lewis opened the joint in June 2016 and he uses massive custom-made smokers to ensure the meat is unctuous and flavourful.

Chez Nous – Tucked away on Payne Court, Chez Nous is a charming and unpretentious restaurant serving refined but wholesome French and Southern Mediterranean cuisine. The menu changes daily and there is an impressive wine list to accompany your meal.

The Ordinary – For the best fried oysters in town head to the iconic restaurant The Ordinary. This expansive building was a bank in the 1920s and the original high ceiling and large windows give the dining room a dramatic feel. Seafood fans should also check out 167 Raw, which always receives rave reviews.

Charleston

 To Drink

Second State Coffee – We visited Second State Coffee every morning for our daily caffeine kick. This speciality coffee shop roasts their own beans and serves the smoothest cappuccino in town. The chic cafe is popular with creative freelancers throughout the day, and visitors feast on buttery pastries… we loved the Banana & Nutella Turnover.

The Daily – This hip neighbourhood cafe has a range of delicious snacks and drinks to satisfy every appetite. Head to The Daily for Stumptown coffee, hearty sandwiches and cold-pressed juices.

The Belmont – Black and white films are projected on the back wall while guests enjoy refined classic cocktails at The Belmont. The lounge was set up in 2010 by owner Mickey Moran and continues to grow in popularity thanks to the skilled bartenders and relaxed vibe. We relished every sip of our strong bourbon cocktails.

Charleston

 To Shop

Indigo & Cotton – Indigo & Cotton was launched by Brett Carron in 2011, as a place to showcase a carefully curated collection of independent all-American brands, such as Raleigh Denim and Wildsam guidebooks.

J. Stark – This Charleston based brand create beautiful hand-crafted, artisan bags of all shapes and sizes. Their products are timeless and made to last. I particularly loved the simple but stylish tote bags.

Worthwhile – Situated in the 19th century McIntosh Seed House on King Street, Worthwhile is an eclectic shop of inspiring designers from all over the world. Pick up a croissant lamp by Japanese brand Pampshade or socks from Hansel From Basel.

Hampden Clothing – Hampden is known as the South’s chicest designer clothing store. The boutique in Charleston has a desirable range of clothes and accessories from American designers and further afield.

Charleston

To Do

Aiken-Rhett House – The Aiken-Rhett House was built in 1820 as a private home at 48 Elizabeth Street in Charleston. It is the best preserved early nineteenth century townhouse in the city and is open for self-guided tours. I loved seeing this magical house and getting an insight into the history of Charleston.

High Wire Distillery Co. – Located in the heart of historic downtown Charleston, High Wire was the first distillery to open in Charleston since the prohibition. The company are dedicated to making premium, small batch spirits and is open all week for tours and tastings. If your luggage allows, buy a bottle of their bourbon to take home.

Rainbow Row – Rainbow Row is the name for the street of thirteen colourful historic houses in Charleston. It is the longest cluster of Georgian row houses in the United States and is a lovely photogenic area to wander round.

Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art – This non-profit contemporary art institute is free to enter and always hosts interesting exhibitions. We really enjoyed ‘Southbound’ – a collection of photographs depicting the history of the South and how it has changed so dramatically over the last century.