YSL Beauty: Couture Palette

YSL beauty couture palette

I’m the first to admit that I’m no makeup expert. From choosing colours to applying the stuff, I’m lazy, unadventurous and frankly more than a little bit crap. As I explained in my first attempt at beauty blogging earlier this summer, my routine generally consists of a bit of powder, mascara and possibly a cat eye slick of black liquid eyeliner with a badly drawn bright lip to jazz things up if I’m feeling really wild. I think this fear possibly stems from some highly regrettable teenage experimentation with glittery eyeshadow and industrial quantities of bronzer but seriously, I’m 23, it’s time to get over that. Recently I’ve been trying to experiment with a few more dramatic makeup looks than my usual and a couple of weeks ago I took the plunge and gave the YSL Couture Palette a whirl.

There were a few different factors behind my decision to choose the YSL Couture Palette for my first foray into eyeshadow since I was about 17 years old, wearing American Apparel tube dresses, copious amounts of fake tan and dancing to Nelly Furtado in dubious Portugal holiday resorts. Firstly, YSL Beauty is fantastic. I mean, they gave us the Touche Éclat for Pete’s sake. This particular eyeshadow palette is also rather a special one as it’s been specifically designed to capture the essence of the iconic Maison itself through a modern reinterpretation of Yves Saint Laurent’s timeless codes, in particular the legendary Mondrian dress. Luscious, bold hues separated by graphic black lines and encased in Cassandre logo stamped gold; delectable enough to tempt even someone who still bears the shame of their teenage dalliance with sparkly blue eyeshadow and dream matte mousse (thanks for that Facebook) to indulge in a little eyelid decoration. The Couture Palette comes in 11 different colour variations and I opted for N° 10 Lumières Majorelle because I just can’t resist something that’s shiny and green. Incidentally, it also went perfectly with my current favourite outfit and looks cracking with a tan, or in my case the slight decrease in pastiness I achieved through my Sotogrande holiday and am desperately trying to cling on to. Full disclosure, I didn’t have the foggiest how I should apply the palette and decided to wing it rather than look for an online guide or anything sensible like that. But do you know what? I was pretty pleased with the results. So here, mes amies, is my YSL Couture Palette eyeshadow step by step…

Base

DSC_4877v2

I kicked things off with a simple, clean fresh base. Nothing that ran this risk of looking caked on or unpleasant, just my usual everyday thing with a bit of extra coverage because it looks weird to have dramatic, party ready eyes and exposed blemishes on the same face.

Lemon

YSL beauty couture palette

YSL beauty couture palette

YSL beauty couture palette

YSL beauty couture palette

Despite not having any expert help to hand, I figured that trying to using all four of the colours in the palette wasn’t a great idea and went for the lemon yellow combined with shimmering peacock blue. Since consulting the press release at a later date I learned that you can in fact use all four but I suspect that had I attempted this I would have looked like I’d been punched. To apply the lemon yellow block colour I literally just used the round end of the applicator that comes in the box, smoothed it across my lid and blended as it moved up towards the brow using little circular movements. I’m sure there is a better method and more professional tools one can use but my distinctly amateur way seemed to do the job.

Peacock

YSL beauty couture palette

YSL beauty couture palette

YSL beauty couture palette

YSL beauty couture palette

And now for the tricky bit, a shimmering, darker shade just waiting to go horribly wrong. As you can see, it didn’t go that wrong. In fact I gave myself a hearty pat on the back afterwards for a job well done! Basically all I did was use the opposite end of the applicator to carefully apply the shadow in a triangle like shape from the outside corner of my eye. From there you can add and blend to create the desired effect.

Finishing Touches

YSL beauty couture palette

After deciding that my eyeshadow was just about as good as it was going to get, I finished things off with a slick of black liquid eyeliner, lashings of mascara… Et voila!

All in all the YSL Couture Palette is very easy to use – if I can do it literally anyone can – and the colours are wonderful. You can shop the N° 10 Lumières Majorelle here and all the shades here. If you give it a go tweet me your pics @Ella_LaPetite

Love Ella. X

Images by Michaela Peker
Location: The London EDITION

Posted on by Ella Catliff in Beauty 2 Comments

Look Du Jour: Sass it Up

What: Style Stalker tank top (click here to buy), Baukjen leather pencil skirt (new season update here, similar here & here), DSquared2 sunglasses, Mulberry Willow tote (click here to buy) Agent Provocateur Connie bra (click here to buy) (all c/o) & Whistles sandals (similar here) with Dior Bonheur mani pedi.

Where: Afternoon cocktails at The London EDITION

Personal style is a funny thing. I’m the first to admit that a lot of the pieces in my wardrobe look a lot like each other. There are certain styles, brands, colours and details I gravitate to. Rarely does a week go by without someone telling me that they saw something and just knew I’d love it… and inevitably I do. Try as I might, I just can’t shake my affinity for anything pink, polkadot, preppy and that could have conceivably been purchased at Bonpoint. But predictable though my tastes may often be – aren’t everyone’s? – now and again there are few things more enjoyable than shaking it up. That’s why I love working with brand like Diesel who somehow manage to persuade me to trade in my usual Blair Waldorf (season one, duh) inspired fare for say, a bodycon leather minidress. Since that particular project I’ve been pushing my sartorial boundaries without being prompted by an Italian under brand a little more frequently. Last week’s silver slip top for instance. What with those slinky straps and it’s potential for nipple free-wheelage, I think it’s safe to say it had sass. Perhaps not quite as much sass as this outfit however. Divine though this wear-forever ballerina leather pencil skirt is, I feared that paired with a blouse it may age me beyond my years. As opposed to making me resemble an overgrown nursery school child which apparently is a look I’m fine with. On this occasion I was about to embark on a weekend of over indulgence at the fabulously debauched London EDITION Hotel (more on that soon) so I didn’t want to look like I just took a wrong turn en route to a ladies luncheon or the first day of kindergarten. So how to sass up a luxuriously sensible pencil skirt? I ummmed and ahhhhed and tried on umpteen options and then it hit me; a Beyonce inspired ‘beater and Agent Provocateur underwearObviously.

sass stylestalker la petite anglaise ella catliff

sass stylestalker ella catliff la petite anglaise

sass stylestalker ella catliff la petite anglaise

sass stylestalker ella catliff la petite anglaise

sass stylestalker ella catliff la petite anglaise

sass stylestalker ella catliff la petite anglaise

sass stylestalker ella catliff la petite anglaise

What do you reckon, did I sass up my pencil skirt successfully?

Love Ella. X

Images by Michaela Peker

Posted on by Ella Catliff in Look Du Jour 6 Comments

Sotogrande Summer

sotogrande

First and foremost, an apology. To everyone who follows me on Instagram, I’m very sorry for being the most annoying person of all time during my holiday to Sotogrande last month. I had been so over excited about the trip – an actual HOLIDAY! – and it was such a beautiful, photogenic place that I just couldn’t help myself. You’ll perhaps be happy to hear that I’m not going to give you a blow by blow of the whole thing, as I usually do with my travel diaries, because we would then be looking at a thesis length word count and I’ll be subjecting you to that a few times over during fashion month which is so scarily soon now I feel a combination of exhilaration and nausea just thinking about it. There would also be more descriptions of my lounging by the pool, something I did a lot of, than anyone really needs to read. Instead, here’s a little photo diary of my highlights, outfits and recommendations for if you ever go to Sotogrande which you most definitely should.

heidi klein ella catliff la petite anglaise

Looking severely pasty on day 1 in my nautical Heidi Klein bikini.

Sotogrande

Our generous and fabulous host’s beautiful villa on Calle Faisan in Sotogrande Alto

poolside sotogrande

I spent a LOT of time lounging by this pool in a similar fashion to Lily the Labrador.

Sotogrande

Palm trees because… Well, just because

sotogrande la petite anglaise triangl

Poolside posing in my Triangl bikini. Highly recommend these, you can actually SWIM in them! Neoprene in 30 plus degree heat can be challenging though.

Mochi la petite anglaise

Wearing an adorable two piece from Mochi, definitely a brand worth checking out!

Poro sotogrande

Puerto Sotogrande, it’s so pretty! I’m now lasting after a blue house.

sotogrande

sotogrande

sotogrande

The view from a divine restaurant called Chambao Beach Bar where we had a seafood bonanza…

seafood

A fairly rubbish shot of the aforementioned seafood bonanza. You can’t beat swordfish steaks cooked on a flaming boat!

superdry la petite anglaise

Ready to hit Sotogrande market in a Superdry playsuit & LK Bennett sandals…

puerto sotogrande market

Puerto Sotogrande market

Sotogrande

Many an alfresco lunch was enjoyed at this gorgeous table.

marbella

Beachside posing (yes more, I am a poser) in Marbs

marbella old town

Marbella Old Town

marbella swordfish

World’s largest Swordfish at a super cute little restaurant in Marbella Old Town of which I cannot remember the name, soz.

ella catliff la petite anglaise

Hangin’ out in a 3.1 Phillip Lim tank and Karen Walker shades. Not posing of course, not even a little bit.

sotogrande polo

Sotogrande polo in action, obvs we had to catch a match. They’re FREE too!

ella catliff la petite anglaise sotogrande

All white errrrything seemed appropriate. Top by Juicy Couture, Necklace by Anne Bowes Jewellery, Shorts by J.Crew (my faves remember), Sandals by Hobbs, Bag by Alberta Ferretti & Glasses by kate spade ny.

sotogrande

Pre dinner outfit change into double J.Crew, Pollini sandals and ALDO Rise by Ostwald Helgason bag.

Cancha Dos Sotogrande

Cancha Dos, the best Argentinian steak in town and my new favourite restaurant. Seriously, it’s worth booking a flight to Sotogrande just for their steak.

Cancha Dos Sotogrande

Obviously tuna carpaccio happened.

Cancha Dos Sotogrande

And then this… A steak so great I still have dreams about it.

ella catliff la petite anglaise
With my mama, a constant style/general life inspiration and my all time favourite person to shop, drink Pinot Grigio and generally chill with. If her feet weren’t so damn small those python wedges would be mine. 

sotogrande

Yep, All in all Sotogrande is a stunning, relaxing and wonderful place. I will most definitely be returning! Hope you’re all having a wonderful summer filled with holidays, fine wine, great food, friends and family.

Love Ella. X

Posted on by Ella Catliff in Travel 1 Comment

Look Du Jour: Picnicking

cath kidston picnicking

What: Cath Kidston Autumn Bloom big leather trim tote bag (click here to buy), People Tree gingham sundress (similar here), Gap wedges (similar here) & Wildfox sunglasses (available here) (all c/o), necklace by Anne Bowes Jewellery & rings by Aamaya by Priyanka (available here)

Where: Picnic in Holland Park, Kensington.

Can you believe that summer is basically over?! I swear just yesterday it was rainy-sunny-rainy-again May and I was counting down the hours until my thesis was submitted and I had months and months of glorious summery relaxation ahead of me… HA! Whatever the season, I always find that there are a million and one lovely things I want to do but somehow the time ends up rushing by in a manic, albeit fabulously so, blur and basically none of them happen. Last Winter, I didn’t even manage to go ice skating at Somerset House for God’s sake. Well, while I haven’t yet swum in the Serpentine, lounged all afternoon on Shoreditch House rooftop, been to an outdoor film screening or gone for a leisurely bike ride this summer, I have managed to have a couple of picnics. In my experience there are four utterly essential ingredients for a successful picnic. The first is decent weather. No one wants to find themselves washed away in a soggy sea of spilt Pimms, semi disintegrated sandwiches and strawberries that have dissolved into an oozing red mess that makes the whole thing start to resemble a scene from a low budget horror film. The others are location, food and most importantly, outfit. Nothing uncomfortable, tight or made from fabric that is either man made or dry clean only. And when it comes to the handbag you need something that looks good but can take a battering, won’t discolour at the first hint of moisture (the grass never really dries out in England) and can fit all the assorted crap you need to carry with you. Since Cath Kidston – surely the most picnic friendly brand on the planet – invited me to collaborate with them on their tote bag launch project this new season floral number has been my picnicking companion. I’ve picnicked with many a leather shoulder bag, an ill advised clutch and several hampers but this baby has served the purpose best. Paired with a gingham frock (ultimate picnic dress, am I right?) and walk-able wedges I felt like some sort of chic 50′s housewife, an effect that may have been ruined by the fact I was clutching a Venti Starbucks iced latte with “Alex” scribbled across it – how you get that from “Ella” I don’t know – in black marker pen and manically answering emails as I strolled to Holland Park for this particular picnic.

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

cath kidston picnic tote ella catliff

As I mentioned, Cath Kidston have just launched their latest collection of super cute tote bags big and small, soon to be accompanied by an exhibition in their Piccadilly store. If you happen to be in the area between August 22nd and September 5th, do pop in and see a GIANT picture of me toting my tote! And tell us which you prefer, #totesbig or #totessmall…

Love Ella. X

Images by Holly McGlynn

Posted on by Ella Catliff in Look Du Jour 6 Comments

Veuve Clicquot Gold Cup Final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

Us Brits are a funny lot, what with our predilection for queuing, love of weather related moaning, dress codes and many, many traditions. Those traditions were out in force at the Veuve Clicquot Gold Cup final last month. During the summer months England’s green and pleasant land plays host to a myriad of annual sporting fetes that have been going on so long they’re embedded in our calendar and our culture itself. Wimbledon, Henley, Ascot… And of course, the polo. Thousands flock to the Gold Cup, dressed to impress and armed with picnics, barbours, sun cream, wellies (British weather) and Pimms a’ plenty, regardless of whether they give a chukka about the sport itself. Having spent a large part of my childhood and teenage years riding, I’m all over anything involving horses. Add the opportunity, nay necessity to put on a fancy frock and drink champagne in the sunshine and it’s hardly surprising that I was very excited to be attending the Gold Cup final as a guest of Veuve Clicquot. Speaking of said fancy frock, when it came to choosing my polo going look I didn’t have to think hard. I knew in an instant that the gorgeous Mulberry floral ensemble – complete with matching chunky platforms, perfect for navigating grass – that I wore for our Kensal collection collaboration back in April would be just the ticket. And so, armed with a fire orange bag and matching lip, Millie, Michaela, Taylor and I joined our fellow Veuve guests to board a fleet of Mercedes coaches bound for Cowdray Park in West Sussex.

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup

After a fairly sizeable drive – the constant top ups of Veuve Clicquot made the motorway experience infinitely more bearable – we arrived in the lush greenery of Cowdray Park which already was packed with cars, families, braying hoorays (translation: posh boys with loud voices), exquisitely dressed older ladies and tents selling everything from strawberries and cream to empanadas. Once my friends had managed to dissuade me from making a beeline for the funfair we headed to the Veuve Clicquot private picnicking area. I use “picnic” in the loosest sense of the word here. We’re talking immaculate orange umbrellas, giant ice buckets, plumped pillows to lounge on and flower strewn swings to swing on, should one need a diversion from all that lounging. As for the food, no soggy sandwiches, cheese sticks or melted ice cream in Veuve’s alfresco dining area. We made a beeline for the J.Sheekey van and stocked up on Scallop & Shrimp burgers, Chickpea & Lentil salads with Padron peppers and handcut chips. Alternatively we could have opted for one of the Mount Street Deli hampers, which I did find myself eyeing enviously later on.

<a href="http://www.ella-lapetiteanglaise.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/DSC_4282.jpg"><img src="http://www.ella-lapetiteanglaise.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/DSC_4282.jpg" alt="veuve clicquot gold cup final" width="575" height="868" class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-15717" /></a>

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

Veuve Clicquot  Gold Cup Picnic, with Tinie Tempah as DJ

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

In between the eating and the drinking we sunbathed, swung and people watched to our hearts content. Just as I was starting to say how much I fancied a dance – as one does after a few glasses – Tinie Tempah took to the decks and got us, ok me, dancing with an excellent DJ set… Doesn’t get much better than that on a sunny Sunday afternoon and the main event hadn’t even begun! Once Tinie took his bow and joined the rest of us on the lawn, a loudspeaker struck up and announced that the match itself was about to start. Polo is such an exhilarating sport to watch and the players and horses on the Dubai and King Power teams are some of the most skilled around. Naturally Veuve’s picnicking area was in prime position to watch the game and we got stuck into the shouting – with minimal knowledge of what or who we were hollaring at – and of course the age old half time tradition of “treading in”. I later learned, courtesy of the Daily Mail, that Alexa Chung, Christopher Kane et al were also in attendance and in our picnicking area looking suitably stylish. It’s a true mark of a cracking day out when you’re too busy enjoying yourself with your friends to even begin to notice that!

veuve clicquot gold cup

veuve clicquot gold cup final

veuve clicquot gold cup final

Big thanks to Veuve Clicquot and Mission PR for the perfect summer Sunday.

Love Ella. X

Ps) Dubai won

Images by Michaela Peker, Getty, Nick Matthews and my iPhone (can you guess which those are? I suspect yes…)

Posted on by Ella Catliff in Parties 4 Comments