I recently had the opportunity to work on a Blogger Style Inspiration video with three fellow Dubai-based bloggers Tinayums, Lebrasse and The Girl Who Lives In The Desert. Our challenge was to personally style an outfit for a ‘Girls Night Out’ from the Koton collection to showcase our individual style. We were then filmed in our outfits throughout dinner with the Koton team at the Mango Tree in Souk Al Bahar, then had an intimate tete-a-tete with Natalie Sabel of Koton at the Autumn/Winter 2013 Press Launch which took place at the Penthouse in Ramada Plaza Jumeirah Beach Residence.
My preview of the Koton Autumn/Winter 2013 collection will be up on the blog soon. Read the complete interview below which touches on my sense of fashion and style, what my blog is all about and why I picked my Koton ensemble for the ‘Girls Night Out’ challenge.
The Koton Challenge
For a night out with the girls, what look do you like to go for?
For a night out, I would go for a metropolitan chic look that is versatile enough to go from dinner to dancing and is easy to move in. In case it gets cold while having dinner indoors, it’s always good to carry a blazer, and a skater dress frees up your legs so you can sit pretty and comfortably.
Tell us about your outfit choice?
For my outfit I chose one stand-out piece which is the jazzy strapless dress and to tone down the jazziness I layered it with a blazer and closed it off with metallic plate waist belt. Then I picked up a pair of black pointed court shoes covered in understated studs and not too high so I could survive the night in them, and a shoulder bag which is easy to carry and keeps my hands free. And since dress was already enough of a statement I wore a single bracelet and earrings to complete the look.
Why did you pick these items?
I work full-time, so when I have to go for a night out I don’t always have time to go home and change so I usually pack my outfit with me. I picked these items because I can taken them from work to party. I would wear the entire outfit with a simple sheath dress to work, and keep the party dress and accessories in the bag which considering my petite size would fit perfectly! So I carefully picked these items keeping that in mind.
What do you think of the Autumn/Winter collection?
The Autumn/Winter collection targets different personalities and sense of style so there is basically something for every kind of girl. I hardly ever go for shiny and sparkly clothing, but the new party collection had caught my eye as you can see from the outfit I chose, and of course the gold accessories which I’m planning to raid this weekend!
Where are your favourite hang outs in the UAE?
The mall? But seriously, the mall! Because I do unapologetically love to shop! You would most likely find me roaming around The Dubai Mall, as it’s got all of my favorite brands under one roof. Aside from that, I’m very family-oriented so I usually hang out with my family. I enjoy movie nights every week with my husband, and spend time with the rest of the family as often as I can. I rarely go clubbing so when I’m with my girls, it’s either lunch or coffee at the nearest Starbucks or Tim Horton’s.
How did you enjoy your evening at the Mango Tree?
It was a wonderful night! The Koton staff were friendly and fun to be with and I got a chance to get to know fellow fashion bloggers in Dubai whom I usually only see in pictures. The food at the Mango Tree was delicious and I’d like to take my husband there for a nice dinner one of these days.
Photographs by Tinayums Photography
What was your favourite aspect of the evening?
My favorite aspect of the evening was the company. It’s been a long time since I went for a girl’s night out as it’s really been a busy couple of months for me, so it was a breath of fresh air to be surrounded by good food and such easy-going women, chit-chatting across the table about life and other things we girls like to talk about. Loved it!
Fashion And Style
Tell me about your personal style?
I have a minimalistic and feminine personal style. I’m mostly into solids, color blocking, monochrome and if I do wear one jazzy piece of clothing I always tone it down with neutral separates. I keep accessories to a minimum, and always try to balance them with my outfit, so if my outfit is very simple, I wear more, and when I’m a little more dressed up, I wear less. I have a soft spot for matching handbags with my outfits and shoes that are not always made for walking!
Who is your fashion inspiration?
To be honest, I cannot name one person that I religiously follow and take inspiration from. I base my style purely on individual taste and don’t always follow the latest trend. If something catches my eye, I buy it and mix and match accordingly. I find inspiration everywhere I go, from the people I see walking on the street, from displays at store windows, and since I love watching TV shows I always anticipate what my favorite character will be wearing every week!
How often do you go shopping and where do you go?
I shop a lot! Online and in store. It’s those big red SALE signs that hook me in all the time. I don’t have a shopping schedule, because I just shop whenever I get the impulse. My favorite high-street brands are ASOS online, New Look, Splash, Koton, H&M, Bershka, Stradivarius, Forever21, River Island and Lipsy.
What will you be wearing the Autums/Winter?
I will be wearing my all-time favorites which are lace and monochrome that I wear throughout the year, but specifically for Autumn/Winter I shall be sporting leather, long coats, stockings and knee-high boots! My color palette will transition into darker tones but I will be adding splashes of color here and there.
What is your must have item for the season ahead?
Gold chains. I have always preferred white gold to actual gold when it came to jewelry, but lately I’ve been drawn to gold accessories. So that’s definitely on my list this season.
About The Look Bureau
Tell me a little bit about your blog.
My blog is a virtual scrapbook of the looks I create, brands I’m loyal to, my favorite picks from recent collections, pretty little things from my closet and fashion finds that I stumble upon while browsing the internet, shopping or traveling. I personally write and edit all content on my blog and I take most of the photos myself unless otherwise stated.
Why did you start blogging?
I’ve always loved dressing up, even before I started blogging. My family and friends would often compliment me on my dress sense or take me shopping with them to help pick an outfit for a particular occasion. It came to a point when even acquaintances or random strangers on the street or at the mall would stop and say they liked what I was wearing and asked where I bought it. Since I like to write anyway and I love to dress up, I decided, why not share it with those who would appreciate it!
Where do you see your blog going?
It started out as a part-time hobby and I really didn’t think it would go anywhere. But since I started blogging I have received messages and emails from readers of my blog asking me for advice on fashion, and I found it fulfilling that I could somehow be a positive influence to others. I have also gained recognition from brands and PR agencies that makes me feel that it’s been worth it! I do hope that my blog can take me to new heights and closer to my dream of being a Stylist or a Buyer for a fashion brand…and if luck is on my side owning a boutique one day.
What are the perks, the things you love most about blogging?
Of course I’d be lying if I didn’t say that the goodie bags we receive at events are not one of the perks of blogging, because who doesn’t want to try new things for free? But apart from that, I love being able to preview new collections sometimes even before they hit the store and make a mental shopping list of favorite picks I can look forward to grabbing later. And last but definitely not the least, it makes me happy to just be able to share my addictions with the readers of my blog!
What is your profession? Do you work outside the blog?
I do work full-time at a digital advertising agency in Dubai, so unfortunately I can only attend events and update my blog after working hours. I am a user experience specialist which most people don’t really understand, but to put it simply, just like an architect who decides the layout, use and function of a building, I am an architect of digital experiences on web and mobile.