Friday, 30 January 2015

Inside the Julio Le Parc Exhibition with Nica Kim

Since a very young age, I have always enjoyed visiting exhibitions and luckily for me, working as a designer almost necessitates it when searching for some new inspiration.

Last weekend, I headed over to London’s Serpentine Galleries to take a look at their Julio Le Parc exhibition. He’s been such a well-known name within the world of art for such a long time that I was shocked to learn that this is the first ever major UK exhibition for the eighty something artist. 

The exhibition is themed around optical and sensory art, featuring his signature interactive games. It’s a really fun exhibition that encourages you to get completely involved by wandering around and pushing buttons to make things work. I'm not going to lie, it definitely unleashed my inner child for the afternoon!

Le Parc’s exhibitions are known to break the rules as they strip away the artists’ authority and instead turn the gallery into a democracy. All of the tools are at hand as you interact and use your own imaginations to make of the exhibition what you will. And of course, you can’t help but find its political undertones very thought provoking.

I like to infuse my designs with an element of fun, so I really admired the quirkiness of the exhibition and would recommend you popping along to check it out if you’re looking for something a little different to do at the weekend. 

The home of the exhibition, The Serpentine Galleries are also surrounded by the greenery of Kensington Gardens, which are perfect for Sunday afternoon strolling.  

I’m always looking for a new exhibition to check out and would love to hear about your favourites. Why not drop me a comment below or Tweet me @Nica_Handbags for a chit chat! I look forward to hearing all about your recommendations.  

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Going Solo: Travelling Alone

Ever considered travelling alone? Picture a trip where you don’t have to get dragged around yet another exhibition that’s not to your taste or dine somewhere that you’re just not in the mood for. Bliss!

Selfish tendencies aside however, solo travelling is something that you should at least try out once in your lifetime and is something that can enrich your minds in a way like no other. So, whether you want to get out of your comfort zone and try something new or need to travel for work, embrace going solo by following our tips for travelling alone. 

Planning  and Packing

Travelling alone means that you’re not bound by other people’s schedules. If you don’t want to get up at the crack of dawn for breakfast, visit a million museums and basically not stop until you drop, then don’t! Do however make the most of your time, and plan ahead if you know there’s going to be quite a few things that you want to see. Sites like Trip Advisor and Lonely Planet offer great tips about places to visit or even stay, and are also filled with honest reviews by likewise travellers. 

Meet New People  

If you’re worried about feeling lonely whilst travelling, then staying in a hostel will present you with the opportunity to meet new like-minded people. Many people make friends for life whilst travelling and sometimes it’s with people who you would have not otherwise thought you’d be compatible with. It’s all an enriching experience, and if you do however get stuck on a tour with somebody you don’t like, then it’s easy to ditch them as after all you never went on holiday with them in the first place!

No matter wherever your travels take you, make sure that you stay safe. Research no go areas before you arrive and stick to busy areas but always stay vigilant of pickpockets.

Got any solo travelling tips? Share them with us by dropping a comment below or getting in touch @Nica_Handbags on Twitter. 

Friday, 23 January 2015

Blogger Style Challenge: Stephi La Reine with the Amelia Backpack

We love blogger Stephi La Reine’s style, so we decided to challenge her to a week of Nica styling! She opted for our beautiful Amelia backpack in bright blue, and treated us to some great outfit inspiration. Let us run you through a few of our favourites. 

Look one is perfect for the chilly weather, as she teams our backpack with a trendy fur coat in blush. The candy pink hue strikes a great contrast against the bag’s bold blue tone. She infuses the outfit with a relaxed vibe by finishing with a pair of jeans and a statement tee. 

Our next favourite look was one that Stephi refers to as her lazy look. We wish our lazy outfits had so much style! She teams a pair of ripped jeans with a loose tee and an oversized cardi. It’s effortlessly thrown together and she describes it as perfect for strolling around the house in. 

Her next outfit creates a statement with her patterned trousers yet infuses a bit of edge thanks to her shearling leather jacket. Finishing her look with a pair of cool brogues and of course our trendy Amelia backpack, it’s one casual cool ensemble that’s perfect for the weekend.  

The backpack is still a massive trend for the season ahead, and the Amelia even doubles up as a cool grab thanks to its handy top handle. The most difficult choice is deciding which colour to opt for as it’s available in classic black, tan or fashion forward blue. 

We know that it’s a tough call, but which of Stephi’s outfits is your favourite? If you’re feeling inspired, why not show us how you’re styling up your own #NicaHandbags by tagging us @nicahandbags on Instagram or @Nica_Handbags on Twitter. We’d love to be inspired by your own Nica style journeys. 

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Trend Alert: How to Style the Faux Fur Headband

With the weather set to get even chillier, it’s time to wrap up warm, and this season it’s all about the faux fur headband. So, as we say move over to the trusty bobble hat, follow our tips on incorporating it into your outfits.

Blogger Style 

We always turn to bloggers for some #OOTD inspiration, so of course we’ve turned to some of our faves for an education in faux fur headband styling. Blogger Sammi Jackson shows us how to style it with edge thanks to the addition of a pair of super skinny jeans and a biker jacket. 

So, it’s easy to see that a faux fur headband doesn’t necessitate a thick winter coat too – unless of course it’s absolutely freezing outdoors! In which case, keep your coat classic as to balance out the headband. 

The Accessories 

Opting for a faux fur headband doesn’t mean that you can’t wear any other accessories at the same time. The headband is such a statement maker that it’ll always be the focal point of your outfits no matter what you team it with. 

You might remember the Lurchhound Loves blog styling up our Sara satchel last year? Well, her beautiful outfit featured a faux fur headband that we loved. Although the Sara satchel has a really detailed design, it balanced out the statement making headband perfectly. 

The Make-Up

Image Source 

Throw away the make-up rules too, as beautifying this look is completely up to you. Again, the headband is strong enough to work alongside a neutral make-up palette, but it also looks great with a bright pair of statement lips too. Think trendy gothic hues or classic red.

We hope that we’ve inspired you to ditch your bobble hats in place of the faux fur headband trend. If so, why not share your styling tips with us by dropping a comment below? 

Friday, 16 January 2015

London's Coolest Lunch Spots

On a rainy January afternoon it’s often difficult to find some exciting lunchtime inspiration when the streets are lined with the same old chains. So, we've resolved to make our lunchtime eats more interesting by heading over to cool independent restaurants instead. So, join us and discover where to go for lunch in London.


Known for its choice of restaurants and bustling environment, it can often be a tad overwhelming when choosing somewhere to eat in London’s Soho district but we’ve recently stumbled upon a real gem. Princi is an upmarket Italian deli with a window that’s perfect for taking five and people watching. From healthy salads to tasty cakes, it’ll easily become one of your favourites.   

Books for Cooks

Variety is the spice of life, and if you’d like a lunch time filled with surprises then Books for Cooks could be right up your street. Offering only one choice of main and dessert each day, it could be anything from coconut soup to pork curry or a caramel and mango cake, 
it's always a surprise, and the dishes are created from the cookbooks around them. You’ve got to admit that it makes lunch times a little more exciting! 

Koshari Street 

If you’re looking to grab something super quick and easy to take back to the office, then you have to try Koshari Street. Koshari food is a mix of lentils, rice and vermicelli, topped with caramelised onions, chickpeas and spicy tomato sauce. It’s the easy way to get your daily does of healthy when you’ve only got ten minutes between meetings to spare. 

Now that you’ve discovered a few of our best places for lunch in London, why not share some of your favourites with us? Can you recommend any cool places to go for lunch? Why not drop us a comment below or tweet us @Nica_Handbags

Friday, 9 January 2015

How To Style your New Season Bags Like the Bloggers

Sometimes the thought of wearing a new season collection when it’s still feeling very much like winter outside can be rather off putting. So, if you’re lacking some new year wardrobe inspiration, let some of our favourite bloggers be your guide as they style up a selection of our new season pieces. 

We had the magpie girl on hand over the festive period showing us how versatile our small Venice crossbody is. From infusing your party outfits with a quirky edge to taking it along to the office as the perfectly compact work wear companion. 

Blogger Honey Pop proves just how easy it is to finish your outfits with a splash of colour during the chilly months, so rest assured that you don’t have to stick to staple tones like black or tan.

We love how she’s teamed our Nikki tote with her bright winter coat, and are very tempted to try the look out for ourselves.

Blogger Sammi Jackson opted for one of this season’s trendiest pieces, our Amelia backpack. This structured piece is all clean lines and roomy interior, and infuses outfits with an air of cool, if we do say so ourselves!

Sammi works it with a pair of skinny jeans, and contrast leather sleeve jacket, finished with
a trendy hat and sunglasses. We love the look, do you agree?

Don’t forget you can keep up with all things Nica related by following us @Nica_Handbags on Twitter or @nicahandbags on Instagram. 

Where we also love to hear your thoughts about our bags, so why not get in touch and tell us which of our new season pieces are your favourites so far? 

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

New Year's Resolution Ideas for Shopaholics

It’s that time of the year when everybody is trying to stick to a million new year’s resolutions, so we thought that we’d lend a helping hand to our fellow shopaholics by suggesting a few fashion focused ones. Which ones will you stick to?

Embrace new trends
It’s easy to get stuck in the rut of always opting for those safe items, and although it’s true that classic styles will transcend the seasons, if you shop savvy, you can re-wear new season trends for seasons to come. Feeling on-trend is always fun, and is sure to make you the envy of your friends.

Invest in Quality not Quantity
So many different trends come around each season that it’s often difficult to choose which ones to buy into. It’s therefore easy to find yourself putting quantity above quality in order to bag as many trends as possible on a budget. The problem of course is that after a few wears, the quality is often so poor that you’re already faced with throwing it away. The key is to choose your favourites and accept that you can’t buy into every single trend. Choose the trends that you can imagine wearing for a few seasons to come, and ultimately invest in better quality pieces. 

Donate your unwanted pieces
It’s easy to impulse buy, especially during sale periods and all of our wardrobes are bulging that little bit too much at the seams, so why not make it your new year’s resolution to de-clutter your stash and donate the things which you know you’ll never wear again to your local charity shop. After all one girl’s rubbish is another girl’s treasure!

Have you set yourself any new year’s resolutions this time around? We’d love to hear, so why not drop us a comment below or tweet us @Nica_Handbags