#04 My Fabulous London Week-End – Camden

English below.

Dernier article sur Londres, je voulais encore partager avec vous quelques photos de Camden. Ce quartier est reconnu pour ses boutiques atypiques, salons de tatouages, piercings,… Depuis peu les marchés ont également lieu en semaine, mais c’est par un dimanche matin ensoleillé et froid que je m’y suis aventurée. Camden est sympa pour s’y promener mais ne vous attendez quand même pas à faire de belles découvertes niveau mode. Il y a de plus en plus de boutiques que j’appellerais “Made in China” vendant des coques pour iPhones, copies de tshirt de marque,… Il reste quand même encore quelques artisans ici et là, et c’est un lieu à découvrir au moins une fois dans sa vie.

Last post about London! I wanted to share some pictures of Camden with you. This area of London is known for its original shops, tattoo & piercing shops, etc The markets used to take place only during the weekends, but now most of them are open during the week as well. I went there on a sunny but cold Sunday morning. Camden is really fun to walk around but you won’t find something amazing when it comes to fashion. There are more and more of what I call “Made in China”  shops selling iPhone cases, copies of tshirt,… There are still some craftsmen here and there, and it’s a place you need to see at least once in your life.

Le seul achat que j’y ai fait un sac dans un style vintage chez Odilynch. Ils ont trois boutiques au sein de Camden (infos sur le site).

The only purchased I have made is a vintage style handbag at Odilynch. They have three shops in Camden (check the website for all the info).

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#03 My Fabulous London Week-End – Oxford Street Christmas Displays

English below.

J’espère que vous passez un bon week-end… En Belgique c’est le déluge et je suis malade donc il va falloir patienter un peu avec que je revienne en mode blogueuse mode. Je suis d’ailleurs très en retard pour ma review de Junarose. Bref j’en profite donc pour vous parler encore un peu de Londres.

I hope you are having a nice weekend… It’s pouring down in Belgium and I am sick so you’ll have to be patient until I come back as a fashion blogger. I am already very late with my Junarose review of this month. Anyway I am taking this opportunity to talk a bit more about London.

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Pour ce deuxième week-end, je voulais trouver un hôtel près de la salle de concert, donc j’ai logé à l’Holiday Inn de Camden (merci à mes parents pour ce très beau cadeau d’anniversaire!). L’hôtel est au coeur de Camden, un quartier vraiment très sympa même s’il a quand même beaucoup évolué ces dernières années. La station Camden Town est à deux pas, et de nombreux bus vous conduisent vers le centre.

L’hôtel est vraiment très sympathique avec un nouveau concept d’open lobby. Vous avez donc au niveau du lobby un bar avec sur le côté plusieurs tables, salons, TV, etc aussi bien les clients que des gens de passage peuvent se restaurer et profiter du wifi. Le déjeuner se fait au premier étage et sous forme de buffet (£9). Vraiment un des meilleurs que j’ai pu manger à Londres!

For this second weekend, I wanted a hotel close to the venue, so I stayed at the Holiday Inn in Camden (thank you to my wonderful parents for this birthday gift!). The hotel is in the heart of Camden, a great area even if it has changed quite a bit in the past few years. Camden Town station is super close, and a lot of buses bring you to the center.

The hotel is really friendly with a new open lobby concept. In the lobby you have a bar with next to it a couple of tables, sofas, TV, etc so that customers as well as people who are passing by can order something to eat/drink and use the wifi. The breakfast is a buffet (£9) on the first floor and definitely one of the best I have ever had in London.

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Samedi j’ai donc pris le bus et après une conversation assez amusante avec un punk (only in London!), j’ai été faire du shopping du côté d’Oxford Street. Débarquement juste devant Primark à 10h pour éviter la foule. Pas de folie chez Primark, j’ai juste craqué pour un chouette manteau (£35). En ce qui concerne Oxford Street j’ai surtout fait du repérage en prévision des soldes! J’ai aussi trouvé un très beau manteau léopard chez Marks & Spencer. Vous verrez le léopard c’est un peu mon obsession du moment.

So on Saturday, after quite an amusing conversation with a punk (only in London!), I went to Oxford Street to do some shopping. I started with Primark to avoid the crowd. I didn’t go crazy and only bought a cool coat (£35). As far as Oxford Street goes, I mainly had a look around for the sales. I won’t be doing them in the city this year but online. I also found a gorgeous leopard print coat at Marks & Spencer. You’ll see leopard is kinda my obsession this Fall/Winter.

J’en ai profité aussi pour prendre des photos des vitrines de Noël qui sont toujours très originales.

I also took this opportunity to snap a few pictures of the amazing Christmas displays.

Vitrines de Noël chez Selfridges – Selfridges Christmas displays

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#02 My Fabulous London Weekend – Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds @ Koko

Wrote this in the train and will only do it in English as I know the core of my readers don’t care much about these posts. But I want to keep a “trace” of of this evening, and it’s my blog so I can do whatever I want to! ;)

Well this past week has been quite special to say the least! I decided to celebrate my birthday in London with three Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds concerts. One for every decade I guess! If the Apollo Hammersmith ones were well-planned (mini review and a few pictures on my blog) I had no idea I would win the Koko Camden ballot (I did enter with 4 or 5 emails! lol) I bought two tickets to share with Ann, a fantastic fan, and friend now from Belgium as well, and booked yet another weekend in London. Nick, you are a lovely, but an expensive passion (but so worth it).

Before diving into the event, I have to say that I really enjoyed meeting other fans at the concerts. It´s the first time I really get to do more than one show (and in another country) and to share this with other Bad Seeds fans is quite amazing. So thanks Ann, Muriel (check her site as she is a talented seamstress!), Wendy and Simon for making the waiting in the queue fly by. Hi to the two men from Switzerland also! And major props to Deo who came all the way from Australia to follow the entire tour!

The whole thing was very well organized. We queued a little before 3pm to get our wristbands and then went out to queue for the actual concert. I can’t believe I queued for so long but once again it is really worth it to be so close.

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Two thumbs up for the pub across the street who let us use their toilets and had to lyrics of Jubilee Street at the entrance! I thought it was a nice touch.

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We were let in at 7pm and it was quite the maize to get to the stage and I seriously hope noone fell down those stairs in the dark! Koko is really an intimate venue and I am curious to see how it will show on screen since the concert was being filmed for the upcoming 20,000 days on Earth documentary. I feel like the camera’s were mainly on the sides and on stage, so they were not in the way of Nick’s performance and he didn’t aknowledge them at any point I think.

The band came on stage around 8:15pm. Nick was wearing a black suit with a shiny gold shirt and looked fantastic. Maybe a bit more disco than rock ‘n roll… Maybe Kylie Minogue had something to do with that, but more on that later. I thought he was on top form and seemed to have recovered from whatever he had last week. He really seemed to be enjoying himself and smiled quite a lot. Early on a guy asked to stroke Warren’s beard to which Nick replied: “It´s quite lovely isn’t it? You can suck it too, it´s slightly more expensive.” Another guy heckled something like on but not sure why. Nick asked him to show himself to which Nick replied: “You are fucking beautiful!” Is it just me or men are getting more love than women on this tour? lol

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Here is the actual setlist (thank you to Brian on Facebook).

We No Who U R
Jubilee Street
Tupelo
Red Right Hand
Mermaids
Watching Alice (for Laura)
Higgs Boson Blues
Hiding All Away
The Mercy Seat
Stagger Lee
Push The Sky Away
Encore:
Where The Wild Roses Grow (with Kylie Minogue)
From Her To Eternity
Into My Arms
Deanna

Nick announced also that it would be a shorter set but he had no idea why… Maybe because you had to be in Amsterdam the next day, Nick!

They played Watching Alice and dedicated to Laura in the audience. Before starting on the piano he joked and told Conway to just sit there and try not to fall off his stool. He actually got up and went off the stage with his glass of wine! Quite funny!

I thought the whole show was flawless and once again being so closed with Nick perched over you singing his heart out is an amazing experience. I think he might actually start to look less terrifying during some songs. ;) For me the highlights were Hiding All Away, Stagger Lee and From Her To Eternity. Really powerful performances. Into My Arms was also quite beautiful with the audience singing along. They ended, as usual, with Push the Sky Away. This song was far from my favourite on the new album but there is something quite soothing about it when played live. The lyrics And some people / Say it’s just rock’n roll / Oh, but it gets you / Right down to your soul might seem like lazy writing but it takesall  it’s meaning after such tremendous set.

They came back for the encore with no other than Kylie Minogue! I have to say that since the show was being filmed for the documentary I had hoped for a special guest, but I still can’t believe that she joined him for Where the Wild Roses Grow. Absolutely magical. It’s safe to safe the entire audience was shocked. I even broke my no picture rule to take a few! Nick looked so happy and their chemistry is still intact.

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This is going also to sound cheesy but I felt really emotional because at 12 years old I received Murder Ballads and it was my first Nick Cave album. I loved Kylie (still do) at that time and I got into his music thanks to this duet, so that song has always held a special place in my heart. It was just like a dream to see them perform together!

They ended this perfect evening with Deanna.

And I ain’t down here for your money
I ain’t down here for your love
I ain’t down here for your love of money
I’m down here for your soul 

You are indeed Nick.

On a totally different note, I just want to say that I was a little “scared” to do this week on my own but don’t regret it all. I have met some fantastic people, and saw three amazing concerts. I am on a little cloud and am so happy right now. I know people usually find it crazy to see more than one concert of the same arists, but hey life is short, enjoy it and most of all do what YOU really want to!

 

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