Hello lovely readers !
Today I’m excited to share an incredible experience I have had over the past few months in collaboration with the brand DUO I have mentioned before. If you are a loyal reader you might remember me putting together my ideal party outfit. If you are a new reader, check it out – I still love the whole outfit and it might inspire you for upcoming Christmas dos !
Anyway, back when I wrote that post, I entered a competition at DUO who challenged many talented and stylish blogger to do exactly that : imagine their ideal party outfit, including a pair of DUO shoes and within a generous virtual budget of £500. I had so much fun pretending to shop online and putting that little gif together – little did I know the judges would enjoy reading my blog post too !
When I arrived at the DUO event a few weeks later, it was the first time I had ever seen the DUO collection in real life. I had received a beautiful pair of DUO shoes last Summer and honestly had been impressed with the quality and comfort. They definitely won my trust and I have become a genuine DUO fan so I was very excited to discover all the other shoes their brand had on offer. The flagship store in Covent Garden (St Martin’s Courtyard) is quite spacious and in the middle is a beautiful grand piano covered in elegant shoes. I was a little late so I sat down quickly on the chaise longue and opened my eyes and ears as Cosmopolitan Catwalk to Curvy columnist Laura Puddy and DUO’s own stylist got talking about their highly exciting jobs ! It was so interesting I almost forgot we were also there to find out who had won the competition…
When it was drumroll time, two runners up were thanked with beautiful bouquets and before I knew it MY NAME was called out as winner of the DUO party competition !! I couldn’t believe it, I didn’t even know how to react !!!! I was so excited to win and receive my gorgeous bouquet, never mind at the thought of winning MY WHOLE PARTY OUTFIT as well as the chance to take part in DESIGNING THE DUO CHRISTMAS WINDOW. It was all too much to take in ! I thanked everyone with a big smile on my face and embarassingly rosy cheeks, had a look at the other talented bloggers’ outfit posts that had been printed out and were also very inspiring, picked up my gifted pair of Campbell chelsea boots and stuck around for a chat and glass of bubbly before heading home to call my Mom ! What a great night – I was BUZZING !
A few weeks later, I received a few packages from DUO and Xmas had officially come early. I felt SO SPOILT ! I received the beautiful baroque Blondie boots from DUO, leather jeggings, a velvet headband and a cute leather pouch from Topshop, make-up from Smashbox, nail polish from Yves Saint Laurent, a necklace from Zara… The morning of the delivery, I definitely had the best wake-up call ever !
The shoes from DUO are actually my favourite piece of the whole outfit, I love the baroque design, I think I probably would have bought them had I not won them !! Because the furry jacket and Whistles top (see original outfit) were no longer in stock, I was treated to a Topshop haul for the equivalent price – and I in fact bought another furry jacket so I was true to my original party outfit idea :) You saw it back here and I still wear it on a regular basis – it’s definitely on my list of 2013 fave statement pieces. So that was my dream retail therapy well and truly dealt with – THANKS AGAIN DUO – and then came the time to design the Christmas Windows !
I have always wanted to get experience in window design so this was the perfect opportunity and I am so grateful for it. I had a discussion with the team about the products they wished to put the emphasis on this Xmas and we threw about a few ideas there and then. Shortly after, I submitted my global idea : a Great Gatsby inspired window. I have been inspired by that film and the 20′s come-back for the past few months and I know so many of you will be having fun at Great Gatsby inspired parties this season so I thought it fit the moment perfectly. To top that off, the Party collection designed by DUO is perfectly Gatsby-esque with plenty of gold, black and suede as well as decadent party heels. It was ideal – and I’m glad to say the DUO team thought so too !
After sending over a detailed moodboard, the team came back to me with a few mock-ups by a set-design company. I picked out my favourite design and was impressed it was exactly the type of window I had imagined. And of course the party shoes look just the part. I just couldn’t wait to see it in real life… When that day came, I was with my Mom in London. I don’t know who was more proud, her or me ! The mirrors, the feathers, the Gatsby prints on the windows and backdrop… It all looked stunning and I couldn’t quite believe I had been part of the creation process. It was super exciting and of course we couldn’t help trying on shoes inside – now we’re a family of fans !
The whole experience with DUO was just dreamy – the team at DUO and Octane UK were so nice and truly spoilt me from A to Z. Generally speaking, I love DUO as a brand – for their products and sizing system, be sure to check them out soon online or in store at Covent Garden where you can see my Christmas Window design all through party season !
Thanks for letting me share this with you – blogging truly brings the most exciting projects and I’m so grateful you’re all here for me to share my special experiences.