Purplebone W11

For Bella’s second grooming session, we decided to try Purplebone in Notting Hill. There was absolutely nothing wrong with The Pet Spa in South Kensington. However, their location was a bit awkward for us (3 tube changes + bus). Since Purplebone was 2 minutes walk from Notting Hill Gate station, we thought it would be less of a hassle.

Purplebone was a few shop fronts away from The Gate Cinema…

I left Bella with her groomer, Ben. She seemed to be liking him a lot. Oh Bella, I hope you will continue to like him until the end of your grooming session, I thought as I was handing over her to him. While she chilled out in his arm, I gave him a quick info regarding her recent injury, and also let him know how I wanted her to be styled. ‘Can you clean around her eyes but leave her face alone?’ I found her fringe very cute and didn’t want it to be trimmed. Ben assured me that Bella’s paws would be tidied and claws would be clipped while he would intervene in around her face minimally. ‘She will be ready in an hour’s time!’ Ben disappeared to the upstairs with Bella clutched under his elbow.

Once hitting the pavement alone, I made a quick dash to the post office on Kensington Church Street, then sat myself down at Le Pain Quotidien to write my blog post.

My hot chocolate…

And a ridiculously moreish organic chocolate and almond spread swirl…

Normally, I never consume a pain au chocolat type pastry with hot chocolate. However, their hot chocolate was pleasantly less sugary and a perfect accompanyment for this bun.

Like the rest of London, Notting Hill area had gone through lots of changes, I thought as I sipped my drink and gazed out of the window.

The only shop which was still staying put was this bargain bookshop, Book Warehouse…

The chain used to be pretty ubiquitous in London 20 years ago. Now, I hardly see it ever except here. However, this branch’s days in Notting Hill was numbered as I could see window signs such as “Closing Down!” and “Last Few Days!”. Even though I never paid much attention to them until today, realising yet another familiar name was to disappear from London’s high streets made me sad and nostalgic.

Then, my phone rang and it was from Purplebone. ‘Bella will be ready for collection in 10 minutes’ time!’, Charlie at the shop was letting me know the progress.

Bella, you rock!

Ben did an awesome job. Bella smelt divine and looked shiny and fluffy. I loved it.

So, did you get on with Ben then?

Zzzzz…, no comment.

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Suits You, Madam!

One of my customers kindly sent to me the photo of her wearing my Greta gilet in denim blue. She is a talented designer herself and I am immensely flattered that she bought my work…

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Thank you very much!

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Gilet Named Greta…

A “Greta” waistcoat is undoubtedly the most popular item in my collection.
Most of them find their loving owners fairly quickly and I receive upbeat messages from Letizia, informing their departures from her boutique, DiGuardo.
I named this gilet as “Greta” because of its discreetly emphasised shoulder detail…

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The shoulders are slightly puffed-up like Greta Garbo striking her signature masculine pose…

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I just love the fact that a string of yarn can somehow morphs into a solid object, like a simple doodle taking up a 3-D shape…

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Through endless trial & error, the optimum numbers of stitch for each row was established. Yet, I can’t still help treating each project as a work in progress…

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By the way, the shade of the yarn is strikingly similar to this ancient Instagram-like snap I came across at  the Photographers Gallery the other day…

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Apparently, tomorrow will be a crisp and cold day. Will any of my babies find someone’s shoulders to cuddle?…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

DiGuardo @ The Dispensary

Guy Fawkes weekend is one particular weekend we dislike the most in the year.
Especially this weekend, Hubbie was away in China, therefore, I had to comfort our firework-phobe, Mr.B, singlehandedly. Once the bangs commenced, his tail went between his legs and his breathing became shallow and rapid. In the end, poor Mr.B was trembling like a leaf on my lap until all the shrieks and bangs in our neighbourhood died down around 21:00. I know lots of people, especially children, enjoy fireworks. But please take a moment to reflect that behind the fun, there are lots of cats & dogs suffering silently, being petrified and fearing for their live. I would be much happier if there were only one night during the weekend, Saturday or Sunday, to be designated for fireworks. How did your beloved furry friends persevere the fireworks?

2nd November was a momentous day for my darling friend, Letizia, because she renewed her boutique, DiGuardo, at The Dispensary…

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She invited me to join her at her new premises on 200 Kensington Park Road…

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Together with Sophie, the owner of The Dispensary, she created a cozy and chic fashion emporium. The signature of DiGuardo…

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Her selection was original, feminine and discerned. In short, Letizia knew what women would want…

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Sophie’s selection was equally original and elegant. A mixture of rare-finds and genuine vintages laden the shelves and rails…

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When I walked through their threshold, the boutique was already buzzing with customers, eagerly trying out their offerings…

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Probably, he was the only one who was not so keen on the experience.
His beloved mummy was in & out of the changing room and not paying the slightest attention to him. His expression spoke very loudly…

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Anyway, the new undertaking Letizia embarked on was already looking very promising. I was more than positive that her venture would surge forward in full sail…

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Around 18:30, we open a bottle of  Prosecco for a well-earned toast.
Let’s hope we all will be even busier towards Christmas…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Greta Gilet in Indigo

I haven’t blogged about my knitwear for a while, have I?
For me, knitting is like an addiction. It satisfies my creative craving and gives me a sense of normality. My day-to-day life is structured around knitting. And a sense of achievement I feel by studying the result of my labour at the end of day becomes the fuel for the next day’s work. However, a joy of knitting can turn into a battle with pain anytime if I don’t harness this insatiable desire to knit.
One extra stitch done by overworked fingers and hey presto, my hands are out of action. And one such setback plagued me at the beginning of September and I was forced to slow down. That was sad…

This is my latest knitwear, a Greta gilet, destined for DiGuardo in Notting Hill.
The used is 100% merino wool with a gorgeous denim like hue. It should hit the shop floor this week.

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I start to feel much better with my hands. Therefore, I am rolling up the sleeve again from tomorrow!

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

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