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HIGH IN STYLE the sophisticated way of living APRIL 2016




to the April issue of HIGH IN STYLE!

MODERN EXOTIC VIBES Don't you feel sometimes that you want more from life? Maybe be you want to visit some exotic place or finally do what you always dreamed of doing. Life sometimes gets in the way but one thing we shouldn't do is let it become a place of acceptance. What we should remember is that there is never too late to live your dream. In our April issue I tried to give you inspiration which hopefully fuel your imagination in your own life. From showing you a modern 1920s bungalow with subtle exotic vibe, talking about finding the best version of yourself with lifestyle blogger Rhiannon Duffin to giving you tips on mini bags and your signature lipstick. Perhaps the most powerful take away from this issue comes from the interview I did with Kelly Ekardt. After she experienced a life threatening diagnosis during her pregnancy, she decided to make things happen and design her first collection of children's clothing line. As always, our issue wouldn’t be complete without a family recipe and I'm taking you to Venice for a day too. Happy reading!

Karolina xx Karolina Barnes editor in chief


content homes modern exotic vibes Take a tour of this 1920s bungalow designed by Kevin O'Gara from Thou Swell with modern exotic vibes.


shop we love Layer is a curated online marketplace for vintage and preowned design furniture and accessories. We talked to its owners about how they approached decorating their own home.


luxury brand Emilia Vespoli of Via San Vito is on a mission to bring little bit of sophisticated luxury into your home through effortlessly chic home textiles.


style the best version of yourself Rhiannon Duffin from LifenStyle is a successful lifestyle blogger. We talked style, confidence and blogging with her.



content fashion 44 little treasure uncovered This month we’re featuring a young brand, Duke & Dexter, that managed to completely transform a simple velvet slipper into a must-have everyday item.

50 the mini bag The mini bag is "the bag" to own this season but is it really practical? Flavia, our fashion editor, begs to differ. Read her tips on mini bags and clutches.

interview 54 special feature We interviewed Laura Jenkinson, a make-up artist and author of MADE UP: 40+ easy make-up tutorials & diy beauty products, about her make-up routine and best products she uses.

beauty 58 for the love of lipstick We’re talking lipsticks. Nude, matte, sheer or bold our beauty editor Nic is giving tips for signature lips.


content travel venice in spring 64 One day in Venice? We took a day trip to this stunning Italian city and explored its best places to visit.

recipe roasted pepper, spinach & 72 feta egg muffins Jemma from Celery & Cupcakes shares with us quick recipe for a speedy lunch or kids lunch box.

“open up & inspire� on a mission to help children 74 We talk to Kelly Ekardt, a fashion designer who just created her first collection of children's clothing line and discuss what triggered the change she's made in her life.

cover Designed and images provided by THOU SWELL






coming soon GET NOTIFIED HERE.



modern exotic vibes text by Karolina Barnes, photography provided by Kevin O'Gara

Great attention to detail, mix of high and low design elements and interesting colour palette turned this 1920s bungalow into a modern and sophisticated home which feels comfortable and lived-in. Considering that this was his first multi-room project, designer Kevin O'Gara from Thou Swell created a beautiful interior full of personality and great ideas.

Previous page and right: The back room, which opens to the patio, benefits from generous amount of light. The space feels lush and tropical with lots of plants and shades of blue giving it a fun exotic vibe. 9


Since the client was Kevin's dad, this was a very personal project for him. The colour palette was very important in this home. A collection of personal black and white moody yet sophisticated photographs inspired the scheme for the whole house. Kevin made them a focal point in the entry hall and designed the room around them. He then translated the colours into shades of charcoal on the walls in the living room which are contrasted with white crown mouldings and ceilings.

“My dad gave me total freedom with the decorating I just had to stay within budget! “ Previous page and bottom: This living room is a perfect example of how to balance dark wall colour with furnishings and accessories.


The main inspiration for this home were Kevin's father's black and white photographs featuring his time spent in San Francisco as a young man. 12

A cohesive colour palette flows throughout the space including the dining area above. Statement chandelier and solid dining table and benches create strong contrast against the wall paint colour and the fireplace. 13


Previous page and above: One of the guest rooms was decorated in much softer colour palette featuring light tones of grey and blue.

Designer’s Tip “Infuse colour into your home through textiles like throw pillows, blankets and rugs that can be easily changed out if the colours don't jive. Once you're more comfortable with your own style and are certain of a palette that works for you and your home, try taking your palette to a larger scale like changing the wall colour or adding an upholstered chair or sofa!” Follow Kevin's projects on his blog here. THOUSWELL.CO 15


shop we love

Layer text by Karolina Barnes, photography and images by Layer

We talked to the founders of Layer, a curated online marketplace for vintage and preowned design furniture and accessories about their approach to decorating their own home, views on style, colour and pattern, and decorating lessons they learnt on the way. 17


For us, home has always been a sanctuary - a place where we can totally relax and switch off from the outside world. When we were decorating our home, we were particularly thoughtful about our kitchen because we wanted this to be a sociable and welcoming area for when our friends and family come over for dinner. We always knew we wanted an open plan kitchen and living area to allow in as much light as possible, but working with a fairly small space was a challenge as we had to make sure it was “zoned” effectively. It’s now a place where we can happily cook and chat to each other and it’s a real social hub of the house. We also wanted to create a home that reflects our individual personalities and has an element of fun- this was our first home renovation and we wanted to be playful with the design so it doesn’t feel too clinical or bland. A home should feel ‘lived in’ and we think that this is achieved with the marriage of unexpected contrasts sitting happily together. 18


England can be dull and grey so we tried to bring as much light and colour as possible into our home. We absolutely love the merging of neutral tones and bright bursts of colour in a living space. One of our favourite pieces is a mid-century chair which we chose to reupholster in the most beautiful zingy fabric - we feel that it really brightens up the space. Style for us is all about affordable, timeless design pieces that transcend trends. We are always moving furniture around in our home to create a different style and look - we’re happiest when we are pottering about at home making the space feel loved and lived in. Essentially, our home is always evolving and it’s a true labour of love for the both of us.

“We’re happiest when we are pottering about at home making the space feel loved and lived in.”



Never underestimate how much storage you need in a home and this should be factored into your budget right from the start! Another lesson we learnt very early on was to trust our instincts. It’s great to take advice but ultimately you are the person living in your home so you should love every single piece. Our homes are our decorative autobiography, so only buy the pieces that you connect with on a personal level and it doesn’t necessarily have to be ‘current’ or in keeping with a trend. As fashion designer Pearl Lowe said to us during a recent interview ‘Only buy pieces that you can’t live without - live empty until you find the right thing.”

“Our homes are our decorative autobiography, so only buy pieces that you connect with on a personal level.”



“Never underestimate how much storage you need in a home. This should be factored into your budget from the start.�





SEVEN favourites



















..where modern vibe meets effortless sophistication


luxury brand

Via San Vito text by Karolina Barnes, photography and images by Via San Vito

Via San Vito is on a mission to bring little bit of sophisticated luxury into your home through effortlessly chic home textiles. We talked to its founder and creative director, Emilia Vespoli, about the concept and vision she has for Via San Vito.



Via San Vito was born out of a love for architecture, mid-century modern design and the arts. At the same time, I saw a void in the marketplace for unique luxury table linens when I extensively searched for them years ago prior to a special family gathering. Most luxury table linens we see today are traditional, conservative and formal, what I was searching for were napkins with a modern, edgy vibe to it.


I couldn’t find what I was looking for and immediately thought, “If I can’t find them, I’ll make them”. That’s when my journey began and ultimately created the things I wished existed. I believe times have changed and that we’ve become more cultivated in the way we live. Young people are embracing a more sophisticated lifestyle with an attitude that defines livable modern everyday luxury. Just in its infancy, our company is delivering luxury home textiles for living, dining and entertaining; we expect to expand our product line into a range of homewares in the near future. Our vision is to foster effortless style through meaningful products for our homes. Our mission is to create a foundation of timeless products which are synonymous with both elegance and daring creativity for our homes and the lives we cherish. Our home textiles are beautifully designed and meticulously crafted in Montreal, Canada with the finest European linen. At its core, it’s Italian opulence meets Canadian modesty.



I usually gravitate towards strong, geometric graphic prints. I think it has something to do with my love of classical and modern architecture and my balanced aesthetic. You can see it in my design choices whether it’s in my own home, the patterns I design for my textile collection or my wardrobe. My design aesthetic is dictated by my strength in my own personal life. I don’t follow trends; I take what is classic and reinterpret it in a modern way. When design stays relevant, it becomes timeless bringing about effortless sophistication.



Colour is definitely important in our interiors. The easiest way to create instant change in a room is through the use of colour. Whether it’s one-dimensional or significant, colour injects vivacity and personality into the scheme and definitely sets the tone and mood for a space. Its transformative quality is manifested in the personalities of the people that use the space. To me style is not about trends and what’s hot at the moment; it’s about personal choice, passion and what we really care about. Things that we gravitate to time and time again is a sure indication that it’s something that we are passionate about and that truly reflects our core desire and how we want to live. I think style comes from within. It’s not something that can be learned or taught. It’s an expression of who we are and what we project to the world. We all have different ideas about how we choose to be represented through the way we live, the clothes we wear, the way we decorate our homes; but true style is innate and cannot be altered. When our natural style is reflected in our homes, it will last a lifetime. In my own home, my powder room is covered in yellow wallpaper with large pink and gold peacocks; it’s sophisticated yet quirky, bold yet elegant and a conversation starter after the guest has used it. If I had to describe my style to anyone, I’d tell them; go visit my powder room! 31


Our napkins are a little smaller in size than most napkins out there, this is intentional because with a smaller sized napkin they can also function as placemats. Our napkins are sold by the unit so they can easily be mixed and matched with the placemat version. We see a definite shift towards a more glamorous lifestyle; gold accents are incorporated into products and textiles everywhere. Half of our collection is hand painted with gold accents, these are the most popular. Our ‘Striato’ collection, with its contemporary yet classic striped design displays an air of modern elegance and luxury, giving it a couture like quality. I call it HAUTE COUTURE FOR THE MODERN TABLE. Our napkins truly are statement pieces for the dinner table. Their strong geometric prints and bold colours are offset by the softness and elegance of the linen and their meticulous handmade quality. They were definitely designed with the sophisticated contemporary woman in mind who loves to entertain in style but who also wants to collect them as heirloom pieces.

“Style comes from within. It’s an expression of who we are and what we project to the world.”


colour & pattern tips for sophisticated interiors


COLOUR IN MEASURED DOSES In an elegant interior, colour is best delivered in measured doses. Introducing colour through details and small touches adds surprising depth and visual interest without overwhelming the space with saturation. Limiting your colour palette to one or a few key colours will keep the look minimal and clean. Whatever colours you choose, make sure the palette remains simple. Start gradually if you tend to be colour shy. Begin with a vibrant pillow and if the colour doesn’t make you cringe, consider where else you can tie it in. Most people tend to over-complicate this concept. Effortless sophistication is best achieved through simplicity, it’s about creating impact through careful editing and restraint, and the use of colour is no exception.


BALANCE AND CONTRAST I’ve always believed in the quote ‘simplicity is the ultimate sophistication’. Of course simplicity doesn’t have to mean design devoid of character and style. The patterns you choose will dictate your approach in styling your space. It’s about bringing balance and contrast to a space through the use of pattern. As for me, it’s my love of geometric prints; by bringing in a layer of this graphic interest you can really revive a space with a fresh and inspiring perspective. Experiment with bold patterns juxtaposed with solids or neutrals. Use neutral tones on bigger furniture pieces such as sofas, then introduce colour and pattern through accessories such as pillows, throws and rugs. The more pattern you mix in a room, the more you need to layer in visual relief for a cohesive and harmonious space.


“Experiment with bold patterns juxtaposed with solids and neutrals.”



Graphic CHIC



COLOURS of the month photography by Sophie Barnes



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5| 2| 6|





the best version of yourself text by Karolina Barnes, photography by Lara Jane Thorpe Photography

Why would you want to be someone else when you can be you... unique? Be the best version of yourself and express it through your style. We talked to seaside living blogger and fashion TV presenter Rhiannon Duffin from LifenStyle about how she found her way of expressing herself through wardrobe.

“My style has evolved over the years and has mirrored my personal journey.�


1.Why do you think style is so important? Style is an extension of who you are, its a way of expressing your personality and the way you feel. It's surprising how you can gain confidence just by wearing the right clothes. Style can reflect many aspects of our lives and also the way people perceive us. It's important to know your true identity so you can then represent the best possible version of yourself. Why would you want to be someone else when who you are is good enough. Confidence can play a huge part in discovering your favourite look, this is one aspect I have struggled with myself. My style has evolved over the years and has mirrored my personal journey. I've realised to feel great in clothing you have to embrace your best features and learn to love your worst - this is key to feel confident about your style and knowing how to dress. Just like my favourite quote "Fashion is the most powerful art there is. It's movement, design and architecture all in one. It shows the world who we are and who we'd like to be." - Blair Waldof, Gossip Girl.

“It's surprising how you can gain confidence just by wearing the right clothes.�


2. Style is about finding your own way of “being”. How did you find yours? Any tips? Ha! To be honest I've made a lot of good and very bad style choices throughout the years. But I guess that's the only way of discovering your true identity. When I first moved to London at the age of 17, it was the best decision I could have made. Not only for my career but also my discovery of “being” as I had the freedom of style expression. It's just like life, the more experience you have, the better you get. Saying that, it's important not to get stuck in a rut so I would recommend getting an outside opinion occasionally to help take the leap into a new look. Style is everywhere, so be like a sponge and absorb it. I love all aspects of fashion, from catwalk creations at fashion week to showing people how to dress well from the high street. Fashion is exciting and it's fun. So if that bag is calling your name or those Louboutin’s make you feel like a million pounds, go for it! You only live once, so why not live fabulously.

“Fashion is the most powerful art there is. It's movement, design and architecture all in one. It shows the world who we are and who we'd like to be.“ Blair Waldof, Gossip Girl

3. What are the essential timeless wardrobe pieces every woman shouldn’t be without? A classic shirt, pair of jeans, leather biker jacket, a statement dress, killer pair of heels and sensible flats. These pieces have been my go-to items for years now. It doesn’t get more timeless than a white shirt. The best styles are super soft and have a relaxed, lived-in feel. Popping the collar is a no-brainer. I like to wear a shirt slightly open for a V-neck style as it’s a little sexier and the perfect canvas for layering necklaces. A good pair of jeans is a must, I literally live in mine. A great pair will last you years and the more worn they get, the trendier the appeal. I love to style them down with sensible flats but then its fun to add killer heels for a night out. Leather biker jackets are effortlessly cool. You can team a biker jacket with skinny jeans or a statement dress to rock a classic look. A biker looks very different when worn undone and makes a great everyday cover up. It’s also the perfect partner to a maxi skirt or high waisted palazzo trouser, the proportions are just right to create the illusion of long legs.



4. You are a successful fashion and lifestyle blogger, what would be your advice to anyone thinking about starting a blog and having a blogging career? First I would recommend writing about what you’re truly passionate about. What do you enjoy the most in life? For longevity, you want this to be fun and something which you're happy spending many hours doing. I personally use WordPress but there’s a lot of different platforms to blog from including Blogger - These two are definitely the best. Maybe look into the different style templates which you could use, that may sway your choice. I would suggest using a free template as you want to see if the blogging world is suited to you. Attend as many press days and events as you can, the best way to be remembered for future collaborations is by meeting people behind the brand. I guess it can be overwhelming at first but just like anything in life, practice makes perfect. It's great to have an original name, one that reflects you and your blog. Think, this blog could become full time, so the name is part of your brand-to-be. And most importantly enjoy the process, the blogging community is a friendly one, there's always help and advice should you need it. We are just an email or social post away.



little treasure uncovered

chic flats


duke & dexter words and photography by Karolina Barnes

One of the most popular footwear classics got reinvented by a young brand that is taking the world by storm. Enter Duke & Dexter. With client base that includes an Oscar-winner Eddie Redmayne, Justin Timberlake, Poppy Delevingne, Tinie Tempah, Jeremy Piven, Tyson Beckford, Jannik Olander and the Ferrari Formula One team, the brand managed to completely transform a simple velvet slipper into a must-have everyday item. Set up in 2013, we talked to D & D about their journey so far.


1. Why did you decide to set up Duke & Dexter? The concept behind Duke & Dexter originated from velvet slippers. We wanted to take this traditionally British indoor item and make it wearable everyday, for dress up or down occasions. We didn’t like the pretentious association of velvet slippers and their inflated price tag. We felt that they were either incredibly expensive or just cheap imitations. We decided to fill the gap and provide a traditionally British shoe with our own contemporary designs.

“The classic silhouette is what makes the brand. But even more importantly, we don’t compromise on quality. The shoes are very comfortable and a joy to wear.”



2. How important colour and style plays in your collections? Both are absolutely vital. Even though our shoe is classic and traditional in its design, we are able to stay current and modern with our unique signature colours and pattern designs inspired by imagery from around the world. The choice of materials also plays a major role. For example, our velvet type is very different. We didn’t like the long, shiny velvet commonly used, so instead, we use our own signature velvet; which is short, consistent, non shiny, brush velvet that enhances our solid, clean colours. By using other materials such as canvas, linen, pony hair, quilt and needlepoint, we are able to keep our collections contemporary and bespoke.

3. You have customers in over 100 countries and stockists such as Nordstrom, Liberty, Fenwick and Harvey Nichols Kuwait. How did you manage to grow your brand so quickly? The growth has been mainly through word of mouth, family, friends and customer recommendations. The key to our success so far is having a great product which is desirable and high quality. Our customers enjoy wearing our shoes and want to show them to others. Social media, and Instagram in particular, has been our main marketing tool for growth. Our customers share their photos wearing our shoes from all around the world. 4. Style versus trends. How do you manage to compete in very trend oriented market? We are able to compete because even though our shoe silhouette is traditional, it is timeless, stylish and elegant. It’s versatile enough to be worn with a pair of jeans for casual look, or with a nice smart suit for more formal look. Our collections reflect what’s currently trendy in terms of colours and patterns, hence we are able to offer our customers a product they want and love wearing. 48








The rise and rise of

THE MINI BAG... words and images by Flavia Young

The fashion world’s most loved accessory, the handbag, has gone through an overhaul. As any keen, fashion follower would know, the mini bag is “The Bag” to own this season.




Although fashion editors and bloggers will parade theirs on rehearsed street style images as if they were just the most practical handbag for a woman to carry her daytime needs in, I beg to differ - I dare call their bluff.



“ Wear them for occasions and evenings because nothing ups the amp like an exotic skin mini bag.� Mini bags are indeed uber cool, and sometimes more affordable than their larger cousins, but the truth is, they are highly impractical for daily wear use. From the ubiquitous Chloe Drew to the covetable Proenza Schouler versions, one thing is for sure, none can fit as much as a woman needs to carry. So my take is, I wear them for occasions and the evenings. And when we're talking evening wear, nothing ups the amp like an exotic skin mini bag.


NALEDI COPENHAGEN Princess Marie of Denmark wearing Naledi Copenhagen Ostrich Clutch.

“ The ultimate style and sustainable luxury.” Naledi Copenhagen is at the forefront of sustainable luxury when it comes to such skins. With its off the beaten track designs and scarce availability, it is no wonder, Denmark’s royalty is often photographed wearing one of their gems. Which by the way, she purchases herself, and is not gifted them for advertising - now take THAT for luxury. Visit: to discover more. FOLLOW LUXE-LAYERS FOR VIEWS FROM THE INSIDE OF THE FASHION WORLD 53

made up text and photography by Karolina Barnes


Make up is constantly changing. Trends come and go. But what is best for us? How do we know what suits us and what not? We talked about some tips to Laura Jenkinson, a London based makeup artist who amassed a strong following of over 340k followers, worked on shows for London Fashion Week and created character illusions that have gone viral. In her latest book, MADE UP: 40+ easy

make-up tutorials & diy beauty products -

she shares her industry secrets and knowledge to help you achieve your unique look for every occasion. From foundation basics, everyday neutrals to smoky wing and fun lips, Laura guides you through with easy to follow steps and products. 1. How did you get to where you are now? I have always been interested in make up and beauty. Since I have discovered this amazingly creative world, I knew it was definitely something I was meant to pursuit. After qualifying as a make up artist I went freelance, gaining experience with each project. However, it was tough. In my spare time I started to post my work on Instagram. At that time many in the industry where into creating body paintings. I started experimenting with this concept but focused more on the face rather than a whole body as canvas. I quickly found my niche and audience who understands the creativity and skill that goes into my work.


2. What are you make up basics for busy women? In my book I created 5, 10, 15 minutes tutorials that are very helpful for busy women. You can simply start with few basic products and steps, and add more gradually if you have little bit more time. Don’t forget though, make up is only one part of your daily beauty routine. Looking after your skin is absolutely paramount. Studies have found that almost 2kg of chemicals from make up and beauty products is absorbed into our skin each year, so it’s important to know what we are applying to our faces and take extra care in doing so. The best way to look after our skin is by perfecting our daily skincare routine. Identify your skin type, bare in mind that it is constantly changing, ask for testers first and identify what works best for you.

3. What is your view on make up trends? I purposely dedicated only a small section on trends in my book. To me, make up is all about enhancing what you have not about disguising it. Be open minded and experiment with products and techniques but if you find that certain trends are not for you, don’t do it. For example, contouring is a trend which we are coming out of. Many see it as creating illusions and redefining our individual features. However, I prefer to use it in moderation to add subtle definition here and there. I remove the complexity of application to a simple powder bronzer. Nothing else.


4. What are your make-up bag essentials? Give us 3 products which you can’t be without. I always have a lip balm on hand. I also love Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipstick in Dusty Rose. Then eye brown pencil to define my eyes and finally a blush for adding colour to my pale cheeks.

MADE UP: 40+ easy make-up tutorials & DIY beauty products by Laura Jenkinson (Hardie Grant, ÂŁ9.99) Photography: Jacqui Melville, is available for purchase from 25th April 2016. GET YOUR COPY HERE 57


for the love of lipstick words and photography by Nicola

I think every woman should own at least one lipstick that makes her feel amazing. Lipstick pulls together a makeup look, helps us appear more polished, brightens the complexion and can even distract from tired eyes. I often compare wearing a red lip to adding killer heels - it adds a spring to the step like no other. I'm not really into rules when it comes to makeup, but here's the lipstick lowdown if you're not sure where to begin.


1. 2.

NUDE LIPS NUDE LIPS work with any makeup look, so long as they're not too pale (aka the corpse effect) - at least one shade deeper than your own natural lip tone is a good rule of thumb. Nude looks beautiful with bronzed glowing skin and won't fight for attention with a smoky eye. Try: Christian Dior Addict in Instinct or Clinique Pop Lacquer Lip Colour & Primer in Cocoa Pop

BOLD LIPS BOLD LIPS project confidence and sass (even on days when we're not really feeling it). Red is the ultimate, though plum or brown can be equally empowering. Bold works equally well with jeans and a tee as it does with a floor length ball gown. Try: Bobbi Brown Art Stick in Hot Berry or Tom Ford Lip Colour in Wild Ginger



MATTE LIPS MATTE LIPS are the trickiest to carry off and work best on a well prepped smooth, plump pout. A slick of balm, allowed to sink in in advance will help. Brilliant for a busy day or night out, a good matte goes the distance and is smear resistant Try: Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick or Bourjois Rouge Velvet


SHEER LIPS SHEER LIPS always look pretty for a more natural effect or to tone down dramatic makeup. Most have a moisturising formula, making them super comfortable to wear. Buy ready made or make your own by pressing a little colour over a balm and working it into your lips. Try: Clinique Pop Glaze in Melon Drop Pop or Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector in 05

While I tend to rotate all of the above, my favourite lip formula is a good all rounder combining good pigmentation with a nourishing formula and decent lasting power. Try: Clinique Pop Lip in Poppy Pop or Bobbi Brown Luxe Lip Colour in Retro Coral



tried & tested

Balenciaga words and photography by Karla Cihak

Spring is finally in the air. The trees and flowers are blooming and the beautiful scent of Spring is noticeable everywhere I go. It always surprises me how much fragrance can influence my mood and energy level. My latest discovery in the perfume world is Balenciaga B by Balenciaga. Inspired by the marriage of old and new, it reflects back on the fashion house’s classic heritage in a modern way. The green woody scent is fresh and alluring with notes of lily and violet. Then it evolves and reveals more powdery essence with darker woody notes of cashmeran woods. Its lighter version of the original Balenciaga B is the Balenciaga B Skin. It still has the same wooden notes but it's softer, elegant, clean and very feminine. The Eau de Parfum is accompanied by a shower gel and body milk. The body milk is silky soft and after application the skin feels moisturised. If you fancy a change and are looking for a feminine, slightly mysterious but sensual fragrance, I can highly recommend Balenciaga B. You won't be disappointed. Balenciaga B is available to purchase at Boots, House of Fraser and on Amazon.



venice in spring words by Karolina Barnes and photography by Natalie Barnes

On my recent trip to Italy, we stopped off for a day in Venice. I've been to Venice in winter and summer months before but I must say that visiting this stunning city in spring is the best. Firstly, the weather is getting warmer (we had around 20 degrees C in the middle of April), which is pleasant to walk around in. Secondly, you beat most of the crowds.


do Take a water taxi Take a private water taxi directly from Venice's airport to the city centre. It took us just under 30 min to get there, instead of 1,5 hours by the public water bus or other transportation. Apparently, that's what the locals do. It's a very enjoyable ride with amazing views from the boat.


do Walk around the harbour and San Marco We did a mini tour of the city centre starting at the San Marco harbour, where we were dropped off, and walked a small circle (without a map, not sure if I would recommend that though) through the San Marco Square into one of its narrow streets. Crossing many of its bridges we briefly went into one of its nearby churches to admire the architecture and artwork that local artisans left behind. We finished our tour by going through the city's shopping streets and small farmers market with fresh local produce.


stay At Baglioni Hotel Luna We stayed at the Baglioni Hotel during our previous trip and I must say that we loved it. The hotel is located just off the San Marco Square, right in the heart of Venice facing the San Marco Basin and the island of San Giorgio. The hotel is housed in a typical aristocratic Venetian palace with breathtaking interiors. The service is very friendly and helpful, and we felt comfortable staying there.




eat in the Citrus Garden One thing about Venice is that wherever you go to eat, you can't go wrong. Apart from the obvious restaurants dotted along the Riva degli Schiavoni, we like the Citrus Garden of the Hotel Metropole. It's secluded location, away from the hustle and bustle of the main tourist area, appeal to us very much. This Mediterranean oasis of jasmine, palms, agaves, bird of paradise flowers and orange trees is a perfect spot for enjoying a morning breakfast, light lunch and even intimate dinner for two.


Roasted pepper, spinach & feta egg muffins words and photography by Jemma Andrew-Adiamah



roasted pepper, spinach & feta egg muffins Sweet roasted red peppers, leafy spinach and salty feta cheese make a great combination. These quick and easy egg muffins are full of flavour and a hit with the entire family! Whether you’re looking for a portable breakfast idea, a speedy lunch, something to fill the kids lunch boxes with or a protein-packed snack then these egg muffins are definitely for you. As a family, eggs are a staple in our weekly shop, they’re so versatile. Even when the fridge is almost empty it’s reassuring to know that we still have a stash of eggs in the kitchen to create a nutritious meal with limited ingredients.

ingredients 8 eggs 1 1/2 cups milk 1 cup spinach 1/3 cup feta cheese 2 large Peppadew roasted red peppers, thinly sliced 1 tsp garlic powder 2 tsp mixed dried herbs

method Preheat the oven to 190 degrees and prepare a non-stick muffin tray. Portion out the spinach, feta and roasted red peppers between the 6 muffin holes. Place at the bottom of the tray. Beat the eggs and milk together with the garlic powder and mixed herbs. Pour the egg mixture into the muffin tray until the moulds are 3/4 full. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes until the egg is fully cooked and golden on top. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before turning out. Enjoy!



“open up & inspire�

Kelly Ekardt text by Karolina Barnes, photography provided by Kelly Ekardt

We talked to the founder of a fashion brand for children -girlstalktoboys, Kelly Ekardt, about her journey to becoming a fashion designer who is on a mission to not only help children to express themselves through what they wear, but also to support and promote traditional industries in the community she lives in and help everyone involved in her supply chain earn a living wage.


1. How did you get to where you are now? I’ve worked in the kids industry for 8 years now. I started off by studying fashion design and product development in the States where I am from and through this I was awarded a fashion design scholarship to come and study in London for a term. I ended up meeting my now husband and this allowed me to come back to London and stay. After my arrival in London I co-owned an online childrenswear boutique called I Dream Elephants, I did this for 4 years, then I decided to stay designing again. I blogged full-time for a bit and also worked for Babyccino Kids, Little Icons, Sense Organics and Foundation Agency. All these career opportunities prepared me for designing my own collection. Each of these jobs plays a big role in having your own collection.

“Life is too short to be living someone else's dream.” 2. While pregnant with your daughter, you were diagnosed with AVM, a life threatening brain condition, which followed by a series of treatments. How did your priorities and outlook on life changed after your diagnosis? Life’s too short to be living someone else’s dream. I decided it was time to stop procrastinating and get out there and truly follow my dream. I’ve also learned to enjoy the small things as they are what make life amazing and beautiful.

3. You recently started designing your own collection for children. How did overcome your fears of stepping into the unknown? I’m not going to lie; the reason it took me so long to finally step into the unknown was fear and my insecurities. I didn’t think I was good enough to do my own thing. But I knew I had to take the plunge because I wasn’t going to be happy until I did it!


Beneath the milk way dreams come true FIRST COLLECTION


4. Setting up a new business while juggling motherhood is hard. How do you manage to keep going? It’s all about time management and to be honest I feel like I fail at it most days. But I’ve realised I am only one person and I can only get done what I can get done and the rest will have to wait. I usually work when my daughter is at nursery. I’ll pick her up and spend some time with her and then I get back to it for a while after she is in bed. But I also have learned to give myself a break.

The collection provides a smart, sophisticated, laidback look, all while allowing your kids to be kids and jump around in comfort!


Using inspiration from Japanese and Korean fashion, you’ll find drop crotch ankle grazer trousers, pleated denim midi skirts, oversized fleece blazers and smart button-up shirts.

5. What advice would you give to anyone who wants to change their career path or life but lacks confidence, is fearing failure and have self-doubt? No one else is going to do it for you. It’s all up to you, so you have to ignore those thoughts inside your head that are telling you are not good enough because they are absolutely not true! I promise you that most of us that have started our own businesses have been scared to bits and have felt like we have no clue what we are doing. It’s trial and error. You just have to go out there and do it. And I promise you, you’ll be so surprised how good you actually are. So set yourself a challenge and just do it! Also, I would recommend telling a friend your idea and ask them to keep checking in with you about your progress in starting it. Verbalising your idea can make it very real! That’s what I did, I started telling people about my collection and then I had to do it! It worked!!!!


IN MAY ISSUE OUT ON 16th May 2016



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HIGH IN STYLE editor in chief

Karolina Barnes fashion editor

Flavia Young @ Luxe Layers beauty editor

Nicola T @ StrawberryBlonde Beauty food editor

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HIGH IN STYLE April 2016  

A lifestyle magazine from real women to real women. Get inspired by stylish interiors, timeless fashion, beauty and life stories about caree...

HIGH IN STYLE April 2016  

A lifestyle magazine from real women to real women. Get inspired by stylish interiors, timeless fashion, beauty and life stories about caree...