Norwich Fashion Week 2017

9-17th March 2017

Photography: Kerry Curl

The dates have been set for Norwich Fashion Week 2017. I'm really excited and plans are well underway for the week. We'll be announcing show news and updates soon but the dates to save are 9-17th March. Vintage Show plans are also underway so keep an eye out for details on that. 

Photography Paul Bayfield

The 2016 Vintage Show sponsored by Zaks Diners was an absolute blast to work on so I can wait to get the 2017 plans off paper and in to action! 

You can keep up to date with the Norwich Fashion Week news on the NFW website, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. 

In the mean time if you head over to the NFW FB page you can see a lots of images from the 2016 show here

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St Giles House Hotel Norwich

Earlier this year our boiler broke (again) and it was a crazy week anyway as it was Norwich Fashion Week which is a workout in itself but amongst the madness I had to go and have a daily workout so I could use the showers at the gym. Every cloud I guess...

Once Fashion Week had ended and the boiler still wasn't fixed all I really wanted was a long soak in the bath with book. I was craving a wallow so much and the house was cold too so I decided to treat myself to a night in a hotel. Hot water and warmth, what bliss.

It was also very near to my birthday which also helped me justify it to myself...and as I was home alone this was a hotel booking for one which made it feel like a lavish gift to myself. But within a budget obviously, so I popped on to booking.com in the hope of finding something nice but not expensive...

Up popped St.Giles House Hotel which is right in the heart of the city centre. I've been to this hotel before and knew it was lovely so I was sure a night here would be just the thing I needed and it was indeed. I had such an  extra amazing stay, the room was beautiful and I spent hours in the bath. I took a bottle of fizz with me and had a pamper sesh for one. I left the next day feeling like I was walking on air. So relaxed and refreshed.

The bathroom in my King Room from my March visit. Heavenly.

So when I wanted to surprise my husband on his birthday I booked us in to the hotel for the night as he'd never stayed there himself. The rooms with more decadent and interesting features such as the roll top baths and old furniture are based in the old side of the building.

 My tip is that if you want to stay in this type of room then do ask for a room in the old side (at the time of booking) as the newer side is very different and much more modern. I didn't know this until this visit.

The second time around we were put in what I now know is the newer side, which was perfectly nice but not quite as glorious as the last room I stayed in. When we checked in the receptionist had said that there were two rooms we could choose from, one with and one without air con - so as this was a hot August day I chose the air con. This led to a room in the newer side.

After realising the two sides of the hotel were quite different  I quickly popped back down to the reception to see if there was any chance the other room was still free and could we change. I felt a bit cheeky but the receptionist when we checked in was so unbelievably nice I felt sure that even if the answer was no she would still be lovely about it.

Different receptionist, same fabulousness. Within minutes I was being guided around different rooms with a choice of where we'd like to stay. I think we got lucky because it was a Sunday which might not be it's busiest night of the week, but I was super grateful and the room we ended up in was just incredible.

Packing to leave after breakfast. Sad Face.

You don't have to travel to different counties and countries for a mini break. Even a night away in your own city, town etc can still be a change of scenery. If you are in Norwich or plan to visit then I'd completely recommend this hotel. Can't wait for another excuse to stay here, hopefully I'll get to try out their spa next time. The cocktails here are pretty yum too!

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Essential Reads: Porter Magazine

It's probably a bit weird to feel a bit smitten with a magazine, but I do. I've mentioned Porter before and it's really thanks to magazine.co.uk that I actually ended up reading it cover to cover having interestingly browsed the odd page here and there in hair salons. It's a big glossy mag and at £5 it's a bit of a treat/luxury too and you know what it's like when you treat yourself to a mag and it's just a let down so I think that's why when purchasing a mag in the shop I'd previously stick to my old glossies which I was familiar with and Porter stayed as a mag I must try out one day. 

But having tried and tested out Porter through the subscription service gifted to me by magazine.co.uk I will 100% be renewing it myself when it comes to it. It probably is worth the £5 cover price but a subscription knocks that down considerably (currently 6 issues for £21!)  making it much more budget friendly - which is always going to be a plus isn't it! 

The interviews always seem to be so well written and interesting too, often quite long and several pages allowing you to feel like you're actually finding out things about the person. They seem to get across the person not just the brand that person is. 

The fashion is obviously a big pull for me of course. The Fall issue has landed and already my head is swimming with inspiration. I've taken a lot of time off this summer . I needed to work on my house which we've been living in a year and there's still rooms unfinished, changes in progress, workmen to co-ordinate,

 I've been doing lots of research for the dissertation that I am preparing for and part of that involves spending hours, days and weeks looking through magazines, thinking about theories and seeking inspiration for my own work. 

This means I've been ploughing through A LOT of magazine material and whilst Vogue is still a front runner for me, Porter is easily up there with it. The Fall issue has also got me thinking how I can style clothes and do some  DIY fashion, both my own and in photoshoots.  How can I make the  most of using what I have, to try and create interesting outfits? 

All of these images are from The Fall edition of Porter and all are giving me a kick to get creative and stretch my summer clothes through to the cooler months by layering along with other ideas such as changing laces and adding ribbons to shoes and boots, mixing and matching textures - how stunning do these floaty dresses look teamed with jumpers? 

I'll also be in the lookout for some chiffon and lace tops whilst I'm browsing the charity shops. I'm trying REALLY hard not to buy much /over buy at the moment but I think if I can stay focused on what I'm looking for and not get too distracted I might be okay...

If you're thinking about subscribing to a magazine you might be interested in seeing what others are enjoying so head over to the magazine.co.uk hub area where you can read posts on all sorts of magazines which cover all sorts of areas of interest such as fashion, food, lifestyle and fitness. 

If you're convinced you need to sign up to Porter then you can find more subscription details here 
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The Return of The Blowdry

I was recently invited to pop along to a new salon in Norwich called The Edge for a blowdry and peek around the salon before it's big launch. The salon itself is only a couple of minutes walk from Norwich train station and has views of Norwich Cathedral. It's all very fresh and new and the Union Building which houses the salon is currently undergoing some interesting changes as it will not only house various businesses and offices it will also have a rooftop dining area.  

Now to me it feels like there's been a bit of a revival for going to the salon for a blowdry as a stand alone service. A blowdry almost always follows a cut and/or colour of course but more and more salons seem to be emphasising their blowdry services as a treat or a mini service in between hair cuts appointments.  

Blowdrys and sets used to be a beauty/maintenance staple for a lot of women in the past and for the older generation a regular visit to the salon for these services is still popular. With hair salons making the most of social media to share their clients looks I'm noticing not just before and after hair makeover transformations but blowdry results too.  So it appears an in salon blowdry is becoming a popular service across the generations and following my experience at The Edge I'm feeling pretty sold on the idea too. 

I left the salon feeling pampered and like my hair had had a mini makeover despite no scissors or bleach going near it. It felt healthy and silky (which aren't two words I can often say about my bleached locks) and it smelt AMAZING which was thanks to the Wella products. I even woke up the next morning an noticed how glorious my pillow smelt.

With the cost of a blow dry at the salon ranging between £10-£20 dependant on stylist it might be a purse friendly way to have some 'me' time or a pick me up and I'm sure that I'll start having the odd blowdry here and there in between services from now on. 

I'm back at The Edge next month to have my nails done by Sketch Nail Designs and gosh do my nails need some love and attention at the moment. Can't wait.

Thanks to Amber and The Edge team for the invite. 

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So I’ve reached the end of my second year at uni. It's gone so fast. 
Photograph: Kerry Curl

People keep asking me how I juggle everything; the fact is I don’t feel like I do. My blog has had to go neglected for a little while as I find myself being totally consumed by my photography degree plus all the other things that life throws at you. 

I've given serious thought to stopping blogging as Missy Vintage all together. I'm grateful for the amazing opportunities it's brought me but my life has changed a lot over the last 6 years since starting the blog and sometimes you have to take stock and reassess. So I'm still undecided about what I will end up doing but for now I'll keep writing as and when.

 I think it’s pretty tough going to uni regardless of what age you are. There’s this constant theory being tossed around that the young spend their days in bed and the older students are much more ‘on it’ because we’re older, wiser, more together. I would suggest this is a myth! It's tough whatever age you are. 

When I started uni I thought my days would be filled with lots of sitting around in coffee shops and bars, chatting about art and whilst there has been quite a bit of that – not as much as I thought there would be. Some days I’m mainly on my own, reading, researching and making plans and whilst much of this is carried out online, there is still something about sitting and turning the pages of a printed magazine or a book which just make working feel just that bit more enjoyable. Also, sometimes I just get completely fed up with scrolling through a screen for hours at a time!

For the first part of my second year I was creating a lot of black and white imagery and whilst I was looking beyond photography for my research, there was of course a strong element of looking at other photographers, both historic and contemporary. One title which I found really useful for was Black + White Photography magazine which I've been receiving from magazine.co.uk. It's been a good source of research and has been great company for me when I’ve been out and about on trains getting from A-B to shoot locations. 
Photography:Kerry Curl

Photography:Kerry Curl

I love train rides but the Wi-Fi is often really shockingly bad and so I always try and have a magazine or a book with me so I can still read something even in the result of what Kevin Bacon would refer to as buffer face!

 I quite often stuff a couple of back copies of Black & White Photography mag in a tote bag. Because it's a magazine which is very heavily artist based rather than technique and gear they are easy to keep flicking back through for inspo and to give me ideas for further reading, artists to look up.

I'm well in to the summer break now and whilst I haven't been travelling across the world, London has been home for quite a bit and and The Lake District too. are calling I'd also feel I’d like to revisit Birmingham again soon and also Liverpool.  

Then there’s a plan I’ve had for a long time about just going turning up at the station and getting on the next train to leave which goes to a place I’ve never visited before so I can photograph the unfamiliar. So it looks like my summer is going to involve a lot of reading on trains then, better get filling my tote with reading material...

If you fancy looking at the subscriptions offered by magazine.co.uk head over to the website They do several photography titles so if you are after something more tech or gear based have a browse of what you can sign up for to have delivered straight to your door. 
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We are not a number

photo: Kerry Curl

I have a love/dislike affair with social media right now. In fact I have for a while. If you've ever worked in an environment where you are pretty much feel like a number, perhaps on your log-in, your work pass, a target etc you might have found yourself getting annoyed at being treated like a number. I know I did. 

Then along comes social media and that's pretty much what it can feel like sometimes. This post is sparked by an overheard conversation in which a teenage girl was full of angst because she didn't have enough followers, wasn't getting enough likes on her pictures and she was obviously genuinely concerned about this. 

Now I'm not mocking this in any way, in fact I'm very glad to be of an age where that pressure wasn't on me as a teen. Some of the people I went to school with were utter ****** and I can only image the havoc they would wreak if they'd had this stick to beat those on the unpopular list with too. 

I shared a version of this video on my MV Facebook page recently and I'm not some one who shares loads of positives messages in my social media accounts and I admit that sometimes when my feed is full of images with glitter and swirly writing which bombard your eyes with positive mantras sometimes I roll my eyes.... I'm all for positive thinking but sometimes the sheer volume of these messages just feel a bit too much and can have the opposite effect? However this video really stood out to me. Food for thought from Taylor Swift.

"You need to look into the mirror in the morning and not tell yourself that you’re not special, or you’re not good enough, you’re not pretty, or you’re not awesome. I’m gonna tell you right now the things you actually are not. These are the things you really are not. 

You are not the opinion of somebody who doesn’t know you. You are not damaged goods just because you made mistakes in your life. You are not going nowhere just because you haven’t gotten where you want to go yet. Those are the things you actually are not. Now, I want to tell you what you are. You are your own definition of beautiful and worthwhile, that’s what you are. You are someone who is wiser because you made mistakes, not damaged, wiser." - Taylor Swift 

Social media can be a wonderful thing. It can be great way to interact with people and businesses. It can be a super way to stay in touch with people. It can be a great way to learn - I'm sure it's changed the way many of us use makeup for example and how we style ourselves and our homes. 

But social media can also make you feel bad about yourself and your life and so sometimes having a re-look at how your using social media can help shut up those niggling voices of self doubt you have in your head.

Photo: Kerry Curl
I think it's worth remembering that often the selfie/outfit post you see as you scroll through your news feed is likely to be the best of a bunch that person took. Digital means we can all take a photo and check it there and then, re-take, change the angle look for a better light, add a filter, crop etc etc etc........

Personally I've always been more comfortable behind the camera and on my Missy Vintage instagram account I don't post that many full face selfies because I never really like my face that much....which will sound really strange if you follow me on my photography account because I do take a lot of self portraits and I feel much comfortable with those - I don't know why, maybe because I'm more comfortable in who I am as an artist than I am in a 'look at my selfie' type of personality.

It's okay to unfollow people. If someone you follow is making you feel bad about yourself (and they are probably not meaning to) however inspiring their image/words are to others, if it's not having a positive effect on you then unfollow. It isn't mean, doesn't make you a bad person and it doesn't mean the person you're unfollowing isn't lovely or likeable. It simply means that the content they are sharing isn't for you at the moment/anymore. That's all. As people we change and evolve and the unfollow might just be temporary or it might be permanent and that's okay.

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