Young Ladies About Town

The girls living and laughing their way around London, meeting lots of fascinating folk along the way...

High Summer Holly

Posted by Young Ladies About Town
Young Ladies About Town
Fiona Hicks has not set their biography yet
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on Tuesday, 09 April 2013
This afternoon we were treated to a first look at TV presenter Holly Willoughby's high summer collection for Very. And we liked it. A lot.

The mother-of-two hosted afternoon tea at Claridges, and showed off her favourite dresses (and a playsuit) from the SS13 collection.

Holly Willoughby fashion for Very

Eager to prove her designs look as good on "real women" as they do models Holly had recruited four fans of her collection to attend and model at the launch.

"As a busy working mum, I know how hard it is to look stylish when you are constantly on the go," said Holly, who was wearing one of her own designs. "That's why I design pieces that are trend-led but do not require a lot of styling."

And - as usual - she pulled this off in fabulous fashion. Personally we can't wait to get our hands on the lace trim tea dress, and the purple maxi dress, and the...

Words by Katy Pearson

Buttery brilliance

Posted by Young Ladies About Town
Young Ladies About Town
Fiona Hicks has not set their biography yet
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on Monday, 25 March 2013
Without wanting to step on Nigel's toes, I have a recipe I must share.

I went to a Kerrygold event last week, where the wonderful Rachel Allen was on hand to extoll the virtues of their their new softer block butter (bear with me). While many more spreadable butters are pumped full of vegetable oils and hydrogenated fats and other nasties, Kerrygold's version is rendered more malleable simply due to the way they heat and cool the milk. That is about as much of the science as I understand, but I am completely sold on the product. I have been using it to butter my pre-emptive Hot Cross Buns all week.

At said event, they served the most delicious savoury pancakes. I inhaled about six of the delights and would have eaten many more had politeness not prevailed. Anyway, now I have my hands on the recipe, I intend to rustle up a batch tonight.

Black Friday all week and Shrove Tuesday on a Monday? Seems I need to sort out my culinary calendar...




Serves 4

For the pancake batter:
15g (1/2oz) Kerrygold block butter, now softer
150g (5oz) plain flour
pinch of salt
200ml (7fl oz) milk
2 eggs
2 tablespoons water
For the filling:
25g (1oz) Kerrygold block butter, now softer
1 onion, finely chopped
400g (14oz) baby spinach
225g (8oz) mushrooms, sliced
100ml (4fl oz) single cream
1 teaspoon freshly chopped parsley
squeeze of lemon juice
salt and freshly ground pepper
chopped fresh chives, to garnish (optional)

1.    For the pancake batter, melt the Kerrygold butter over a low heat. Put the flour, salt, milk, eggs and water into a mixing bowl and beat together with a hand whisk to make a smooth batter. Whisk in the melted Kerrygold butter and leave to rest for 20-30 minutes.

2.    For the filling, melt the Kerrygold butter in a heavy saucepan until it foams. Add the onion, then cover and sweat over a gentle heat for 5-10 minutes, until soft but not coloured.

3.    Meanwhile, cook the spinach in a tiny amount of water in a large lidded saucepan, until the leaves wilt (about 3-4 minutes). Drain, then squeeze out the excess liquid with the back of a spoon.

4.    Add the mushrooms to the onion and cook for a few more minutes, then stir in the cream, parsley and spinach. Season with lemon juice, salt and pepper.

5.    Cook ladlefuls of the pancake batter in a non-stick frying pan until set on the surface. Turn over to cook the other side. Use to make 4 large or 8 small pancakes.

6.    Lay the pancakes on warm plates and spoon the filling in the middle. Serve, sprinkled with chopped chives.

Tip: Use the filling as a sauce for pasta - simply stir it though your favourite cooked pasta shapes.

Sugar sensation

Posted by Young Ladies About Town
Young Ladies About Town
Fiona Hicks has not set their biography yet
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on Wednesday, 20 March 2013
Tate & Lyle Sugars - Britain’s largest cane sugar brand - has created the world’s first hotel made entirely from cake to launch their new Taste Experience range of golden and brown cane sugars.

We popped along to check out the Soho-based cake hotel, which has been created using more than 600 kilos of Taste Experience sugar (600 kilos!) A team of 14 cake makers are behind the edible house, which took more than 2,000 hours to bake and 900 hours to decorate.


The eight differently-themed rooms feature are a cornucopia of sugary delights. Our favourites were the Treacle Tarts in the the British Inspired space, and the Giant Turtle Eggs (crack them open to reveal cake!) in the Barbados Inspired room.

One hour and a million sweet treats later, we had made serious headway into that 600 kilos...

The hotel will be available for an overnight stay, free of charge for one lucky couple on Thursday 21st March. For bookings, tweet @welovebaking and explain why you want to stay over in the first cake hotel, including the hashtag '#TastingHouse'.

For more information on Tate & Lyles eight new Fairtrade sugars visit 

Thrill of the chase

Posted by Young Ladies About Town
Young Ladies About Town
Fiona Hicks has not set their biography yet
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on Thursday, 14 March 2013
As a fan of Alex Monroe’s delicate, nature-inspired jewellery – I am never without my Lucky Clover or Mr and Mrs Bird necklaces – I fluttered excitedly to the launch of their new collection, The Chase, at their London SE1 boutique. I was intrigued by the press release description: “there is a darker side, as we observe the hunter and its prey”.
monroe 1
Just as you would expect, the boutique is a heavenly nest of quirky, woodland gorgeousness with a surrealist twist. I was welcome by manager Jutta Pfannkuch and her team, and over a glass of fizz we discussed the new pieces, available in sterling silver or 22-carat gold plate. Inspired by nature and “all things English”, they have the freshness and lightness of touch typical of Monroe’s work, but in his latest offering nature is earthier, with hints of red in tooth and claw.

Sharp, streamlined foxes chase (but never catch!) adorable bunnies around a bracelet, or across a pair of earrings. And the fox, of course, is both predator and prey – although no hounds are featured. There is a sprinkling of irony too, in the Shotgun Wedding pendant, featuring two birds perched happily on a gun. Winged creatures make their nests on rings or stand on intricate, miniature garden gates. All of it is closely observed, finely detailed and beautifully crafted – and despite the theme of “the chase”, Monroe’s signature gentleness runs through the collection. monroe 2

One way or another, all the pieces made me smile. And, with prices ranging from £105 to £195, they are affordable too. Top of my wish list was a running rabbit pendant, an understated piece that captured the energy and magical qualities of that much-loved creature. Another favourite was a ring with a sitting rabbit next to a tiny diamond – it made me think of Easter eggs. On which subject, the luscious displays included china bowls full of miniature chocolate eggs for guests to enjoy, as well as rabbit-shaped vases filled with daffodils.

Although here to view the new collection, I couldn’t help feasting my eyes on some of the other pieces. Many are well-known classics (the ring with two birds and a pearl that I’ve been lusting after for years) and some I had not seen before and instantly fell in love with, like a gold owl pendant with bright green gemstone eyes. Trying on different necklaces, I discovered they work really well layered together – so my beloved clover and birds needn’t stay at home once I’ve acquired a new one. There was universal cooing of appreciation from fellow guests, as we tried on pieces while sipping champagne and nibbling on mini eggs and cupcakes. Utter, utter bliss.

And after all that, back with a thud into the real and very cold world of a March evening– a bit like Alice in Wonderland waking up from her dream. All I have to do now is decide what my next purchase will be: a tough call, as obviously I want everything. Husband, friends and relations: if you are reading this and are stuck for birthday gift ideas, or even just-because present ideas, you know where to go. 

Words by Juanita Coulson


Posted by Young Ladies About Town
Young Ladies About Town
Fiona Hicks has not set their biography yet
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on Wednesday, 13 March 2013
It's safe to say when we heard that a fashion show was to be staged in the heart of the Buckingham Palace Gardens this summer, we were *pretty* excited!

And now we know a bit more about the planned Coronation Festival Catwalk Show we are even more excited.

Coronation Festival Catwalk Shows

Today we can reveal that a 400 seat raised catwalk, surrounded by a bed of flowers in the Buckingham Palace Gardens, will be the location for the series of unique fashion shows.

The exclusive shows will tell the story of British fashion and iconic style over the past sixty years, showcasing companies that have been awarded the prestigious Royal Warrant of Appointment.

There will be five catwalk shows for each day, a mix of four themes collectively paying tribute to the six varied decades since the Coronation of HM The Queen in 1953. Savile Row’s finest tailors including Gieves & Hawkes, Dege & Skinner, Henry Poole & Co and Johns & Pegg, plus tailors Benson & Clegg, Thresher & Glenny and Kent Haste Lachter will join fellow Royal Warrant holders DAKS, Austin Reed, Hunter Boots, Ettinger, John Lewis and Peter Jones to showcase their latest collections in this catwalk celebration of British style.

A few unlikely catwalk candidates may also find themselves creatively taking part in the shows including: fine china experts Caverswall, Roberts Radio, Bendicks Chocolates and celebrated food and drink experts Partridges, Valvona & Crolla and Charbonel Et Walker.

The catwalk will also feature specially commissioned pieces from contemporary London designer Joey Bevan who will take an original and creative approach to Royal Warrant holder products to show the wealth of companies and industry sectors that bear this Royal seal of approval. This will look to include dresses made from Jaguar Land Rover and Bentley car parts to origami paper dresses using materials from Talk Paper and Tom Smith c/o International Greetings, stunning designs using upholstery and fabrics from Hardy Minnis, and G.P and J Baker and dresses made from domestic electrical wires and Brinton Carpets.

We cannot WAIT!

The catwalk shows form just part of the daytime entertainment programme for the four day Coronation Festival (11 – 14 July) – a one off event hosted by the Royal Warrant Holders Association which will bring together over 200 Warrant holding companies to celebrate innovation, industry and excellence. Daytime tickets of £30 per person can still be purchased via

Words by Katy Pearson

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