The Belt Bag Is Back

The belt bag is back, and modern iterations are so much cooler than its practical predecessors. I personally love Valentino‘s bold green leather ‘Rockstud’ version that  is covered in the label’s white pyramid studs and matching stitching (see below). Take your cue from different styling possibilities by wearing it slung over one shoulder.

LoL, Sandra

The Rockstud quilted leather belt bag by Valentino

Souvenir embellished leather-trimmed jacquard belt bag by Balenciaga

Pixie mini suede and textured-leather belt bag by Chloé

Anna leather belt bag by Wandler

Noomi color-block shell belt bag by Isabel Marant

Matelassé leather belt bag by Miu Miu

Printed leather belt bag by Gucci

Photos: Courtesy of the Brands

New Balenciaga Knife Over-the-Knee Boots

The second-skin silhouette of Balenciaga‘s Knife boots are updated for S/S 2018 with vibrant and unexpected prints, showcasing Demna Gvasalia‘s off-kilter aesthetic nods and alternative exploration of fetishism.

From left to right: Knife denim over-the-knee bootsKnife animal print over-the-knee boots and Knife lace over-the-knee boots.

From left to right: Knife palm-print over-the-knee bootsiconKnife mountain and daisy landscape print over-the-knee bootsKnife pink over-the-knee boots and Knife dollar-print over-the-knee boots.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Balenciaga

My Look: Love Always London

Last week in London, I wore one of my favorite dresses by Mary Katrantzou. The so-called Knight dress draws inspiration from vintage 1960s ties. Its striped bodice opens to a pleated skirt decorated with an array of typical animal prints you would see on an Hermès tie. Have you ever thought of transforming your hubby’s old ties into something new for you?! Might be worth the thought… If you are wondering why I am wearing such chunky boots, it was raining cats and dogs.

The photos were taken in my beautiful Belgravia Suite at the COMO The Halkin. A hotel review will be coming up shortly.

My look: Knight tie-neck graphic-print dress by Mary Katrantzouicon, Ceinture cut-out leather ankle boots by Balenciagaiconblack cardigan by Miu Miu, patchwork flap bag by Chanel (Resort 2011).

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht


This week, I was in London for Fashion Week and treated myself to the legendary Prêt-à-Portea designer afternoon tea experience at the Berkeley Hotel which is inspired by the world of fashion. I had already done it once 6 years ago (for the previous post click here please) and was curious to see the Collins Room after it had undergone renovations.

You might be wondering what is Prèt-à-Portea exactly? It is a menu of couture cakes especially designed for the respective season gets a makeover every six months to reflect the latest catwalk trends, colours and designs. For F/W 2017-18, Head Pastry Chef Mourad Khiat has sent out a brand new collection of exquisite biscuits, bakes and fancies. It takes inspiration from an array of distinguished fashion and accessory designers, and the latest creations shown on the international fashion runways.

A delicate collection of cakes and fancies inspired by the world’s finest designers:

Gucci’s kimono, complete with a charming parasol, transformed into a pomegranate and grenadine bavarois, with cassis and apple compote topped with a crystallised edible flower and a chocolate parasol.

Balenciaga’s effortlessly luxe black-and-white flouncy dress reimagined as a moist chocolate cake, layered with white chocolate Grand Marnier mousse, crunchy ganache and a sexy orange leg.

Gianvito Rossi’s red-heeled boots, recreated as a fennel seed biscuit iced with burgundy red royal icing.

Bottega Veneta’s daring mustard-coloured suit, gracing the cakewalk as an iced speculoos chocolate biscuit.

Anya Hindmarch’s orange leather clutch as a dulce and ginger cake sandwiched within foxy orange chocolate.

Burberry’s sleek white feathered cape, recreated as a tonka bean cheesecake with cinnamon crumble base, covered with glossy white glaze and finished with a curvy white chocolate feather.

Miu Miu’s luxuriously warm coat transformed into a bûche of pistachio crémeux set on hazelnut sable and topped with waved meringue.

Christopher Kane’s ‘LBD’ taken to another level with stunning flowers and transformed into a chocolate moelleux cake with lacte café and Bailey’s cream, finished with sugar flowers.

Dolce & Gabbana’s stand-out dress, now an almond génoise complete with a mango & passion fruit insert and a cocktail caraibe mousse, topped with a rainbow of chocolate disks.

Your tea also includes a flavoursome collection of miniature savoury skewers, taster spoons, elegant canapés and tea sandwiches. To drink, choose from a large selection of loose leaf teas (I personally recommend the Ceylon & Rose tea) from the hotel’s extensive collection and treat yourself to a glass of bubbly like I did. Raise a toast in style!

Prêt-à-Portea is priced at £52.00 per person.
Champagne Prêt-à-Portea, with a glass of Laurent-Perrier, £62.00 per person.
Couture Champagne Prêt-à-Portea, with a glass of Laurent-Perrier Rosé, Bollinger Rosé or Ruinart Blanc de Blancs, £70.00 per person.
A 12.5% discretionary service charge will be added to your bill.

Call: +44 (0)20 7107 8866

There is also a great coffee table (I meant tea table book :-)) that I can recommend: «Prêt-à-Portea: High-Fashion Bakes and Biscuits» was published to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Berkeley’s iconic afternoon tea with 20 recipes and baking techniques from the hotel’s Head Pastry Chef Mourad Khiat. To buy the book, click here please.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht
Runway Photos: Courtesy of the Brands
Photos Cover: Courtesy of the Berkeley Hotel

Crocs Will Be THE Shoe for S/S 2018

Who would have thought that the ugly shoe trend will be so successful over several seasons that it will be reaching its peak for S/S 2018. While Christopher Kane was the first designer to collaborate with Crocs for S/S 2017 – Balenciaga is taking the ubiquitous gardening shoe to new heights this season.

Christopher Kane S/S 2018

If you have kids, you have been there and surely decorated the iconic rubber shoes with princesses or or other little gadgets. For S/S 2018, Christopher Kane wants to prove his love for Crocs again and re-upped his own commitment by making shoes out of the rubbery material and adorning them with Swarovski crystal embellishments.

Balenciaga S/S 2018

For Balenciaga, Demna Gvasalia made a Croc version definitely a standout one with a 10 cm foam platform that is branded with Demna’s newly redesigned Balenciaga logo. But will this design change the world’s problem with Crocs? As he said at Vogue’s Forces of Fashion conference, “I think it’s very interesting, the definition of ugly. I think it’s also very interesting to find this line where ugly becomes beautiful or where beautiful becomes ugly. That’s a challenge I like. I think that’s a part of what fashion stands for and I like that people think my clothes are ugly; I think it’s a compliment.

Balenciaga S/S 2018 Runway

Do both designers, Kane and Gvasalia, just hate feet? Or did they legit think that glitter and a gigantic platform take the prize. I mean, all of these shoes are probably comfortable to wear, but when it comes to looks, you have to admit they hardly have the refined elegance of a pair of high heels. Anyway, I am sure that I will go for them in the end… or not, we’ll see! If I buy them, I will definitely get a nasty bashing from my daughter who had to convince me over months many years ago to get her a pair of Crocs… haha, and now Mummy is considering them. How twisted it this?

Crystal embellished Crocs by Christopher Kane
iconNew customers get 10% off with this CODE: 10FF18. Enjoy!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Balenciaga and Christopher Kane

My Look: Antwerp

Last week I spent an amazing 48 hours in Antwerp. The Flemish city in Belgium has so much to offer and I cannot wait to tell you all about it! Here you see me exploring the city in a comfy yet stylish outfit. Drawing inspiration from Disney’s film «Fantasia» released in the 1940’s, this cute dress by Mary Katrantzou is the height of whimsy.

My look: Quilted nylon coat with mink by Gucci, Iven Blue Centaur dress by Mary Katrantzou, lavender cashmere wrap cardigan by Ralph Lauren Black Labelgraffiti classic city tote bag by Balenciaga, crystal embellished biker boots by Miu Miu, teddy necklace by Dolce & Gabbana and leopard print scarf by Louis Vuitton.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht

Pack & Go

If the Bazar shopper from BALENCIAGA wasn’t already the perfect companion for the city-dweller, now it comes emblazoned with your favourite cosmopolitan centres. Crafted in Italy from the label’s signature Arena lambskin leather, this new style features vibrant prints of our beloved metropoles and is finished with the golden embossed logo on the front. Carry yours by the tote handles or removable shoulder strap.

From left to right:

XS Bazar Shopper PARIS Print Tote
iconXS Bazar Shopper TOKYO Print Tote
iconXS Bazar Shopper HONG KONG Print Tote
iconXS Bazar Shopper LONDON Print Tote

My favorite is the XS Bazar Shopper NEW YORK Print Tote. Give me anything pink and I am hooked. Pack & Go! Gosh, those bags cater so much to my wanderlust… needed!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Balenciaga, © Sandra Bauknecht

Protect Your Investment

Expensive handbags now come with raincoats (yes, I know, your Hermès Birkin also has a cover for protection). But! Suede meets spring showers? No problem anymore…

My favorite? Chanel‘s must-have It-bag. And if you just want to show the trend with your favorite handbag in your closet, visit Handbag Raincoat, a.k.a. the most genius items you probably didn’t realize existed. Coming in a variety of sizes, depending on how big your purse is, it will protect handbags from inopportune weather.

LoL, Sandra

Chanel S/S 2018

Balenciaga S/S 2018

Valextra Raincoat for Iside Medium Bag

Photos: Courtesy of the Brands

Ultra Violet – Color of the Year 2018

In collage: Printed satin-jacquard midi dress by Marni, velvet platform ankle boots by Prada and swimsuit by Eres.

«The Pantone Color of the Year has come to mean so much more than ‘what’s trending’ in the world of design; it’s truly a reflection of what’s needed in our world today.» – Laurie Pressman, Vice President of the Pantone Color Institute.

Each year PANTONE, the global color authority, chooses one Color of the Year, like a snapshot of what we see taking place in our global culture that serves as an expression of a mood and an attitude. For 2018, it is a dramatically provocative and thoughtful purple shade: PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet communicates originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking that points us toward the future.

Complex and contemplative, Ultra Violet suggests the mysteries of the cosmos, the intrigue of what lies ahead, and the discoveries beyond where we are now. The vast and limitless night sky is symbolic of what is possible and continues to inspire the desire to pursue a world beyond our own.

Purple Rain: Prince performing in 1985

Enigmatic purples have also long been symbolic of counterculture, unconventionality, and artistic brilliance. Musical icons Prince, David Bowie, and Jimi Hendrix brought shades of Ultra Violet to the forefront of western pop culture as personal expressions of individuality. Nuanced and full of emotion, the depth of PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet symbolizes experimentation and non-conformity, spurring individuals to imagine their unique mark on the world, and push boundaries through creative outlets.

Ultra violet on the S/S 2018 runways: GucciBalenciagaMoschino

Historically, there has been a mystical or spiritual quality attached to Ultra Violet. The color is often associated with mindfulness practices, which offer a higher ground to those seeking refuge from today’s over-stimulated world. The use of purple-toned lighting in meditation spaces and other gathering places energizes the communities that gather there and inspire connection.

To shop ULTRA VIOLET, have a look at those fantastic pieces and get ahead of the fashion trend:

Belted asymmetric silk-mousseline blouse by Balenciaga

Spandex pumps by Balenciagaicon

Nail Polish in Ultra Violet (Pantone Collection) by Butter London

Embellished-leaf satin pouch by Attico

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of the Brands, via Pantone

Most Important S/S 2018 Accessories Trends

After this weekend’s summary about the 15 most important runway trends for S/S 2018, I thought you might enjoy a look also at the must-have accessories for next summer. The forecast: Get ready for your another sumptuous season! Many things are here to stay or will even take it up a notch. Sneakers are trendier than ever and have taken center stage. The ugly shoe phenomenom explores new heights as seen at Balenciaga‘s collaboration with Crocs. And we can deny it no longer: the fanny pack is here to stay. Earrings and straw hats are bigger than ever and bags are most beautiful in an array of patterns.

LoL, Sandra

Givenchy – Balenciaga – Marc Jacobs

Missoni – Giorgio Armani – Jacquemus

Tibi – Chanel – Valentino

Dolce & Gabbana – Prada – Gucci

Loewe – Louis Vuitton – Céline

Balenciaga – Christopher Kane – Miu Miu

Olivier Theyskens – Calvin Klein 205W39NYC – Erdem

Saint Laurent – Stella McCartney – Isabel Marant

Dior – Chloé – Prada

Fendi – Balenciaga – Versace

Photos: Via