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Thursday, 11 May 2017

Exploring Prague!

So I thought I’d write an honest post based on my experience visiting Prague, Czech Republic. This post will contain the good and the maybe not so good. Disclaimer: I know that every country has it's own issues and that no country is perfect. However this is my experience based on my time spent in the country....
Let’s start off with the good. Prague is an absolutely magical city filled with beautiful architecture, a rich history and great touristic visiting spots. The ancient capital city is a captivating place to travel to and it has proven itself to be a popular tourism destination. For those visiting Czech Republic for the first time there are many popular tourism attractions on offer to explore.
 
The first place that was on my list to explore was definitely the Charles Bridge. It is an historic bridge that crosses the Vltava River in Prague. Its construction started in 1357 and finished in the beginning of the 15th century. The Charles Bridge was the most important connection between the Prague Castle and the city’s Old Town and various surrounding areas. The bridge can only be used by pedestrians and its total length is 515.8 metres.
As soon as I arrived in Prague along with a few of the others that had joined us on the trip we took to the streets of the Old town, Prague, this is thus an medieval settlement of Prague and notable places in the old town includes Old Town Square and the Astronomical Clock. The Astronomical clock was first installed in 1410, making it the third-oldest astronomical clock in the world and the oldest one still operating. I however I did not manage to get to see the clockwork strike on the hourly, but it is known to show figures of the apostles and other moving sculptures. It really is spectacular to actually see this gigantic astronomical clock on full display.
We also managed to get around to seeing the Prague Castle which dates back to the 9th century. According to the Guinness book of records Prague Castle is the largest ancient castle in the world occupying an area of almost 70 000 square metre. The castle is amongst the most visited tourist attractions and when visually seeing the architecture and attention to detail it is clear why this is such a popular destination.
Another must see has to be the Lennon wall or the John Lennon wall as it is known. Since 1980 it has been filled with John Lennon inspired graffiti and pieces of lyrics from the Beatles songs. In the 1988, the wall was a source of irritation for the communist regime of Gustav Husak. Young Czechs would write grievances on the wall and in a report of the time this led to a clash between hundreds of students and security police on the nearby Charles Bridge. The wall continuously undergoes change and the original portrait of Lennon is long lost under layers of new paint. We were told by a tour guide that the amazing thing about this wall is that it is constantly changing, if you had to visit Prague a week later, the wall will look completely different. Also according to law this is now the only wall in Prague where it is legal to draw here and make use of graffiti.
So now I’ve given you a clear view on the great things to see in Prague, let’s talk about some of the perhaps not so great things that you could experience when visiting the magical city! If you are looking for a friendly welcome and good old hospitality it seemed to be quite a stretch. Asking for directions from the locals or even the cab drivers was an absolute mission, as they come across completely irritated and abrupt. We even experienced this in the local cafĂ© whereby the waitresses was just plain rude. Asking basic questions was quite an annoyance for them and their faces clearly showed their frustrations. In the hotel we even had the experience when the guy assisting us with the bags got so irritated with us, talking amongst ourselves before instructing him about where we would like our bags to go. His body language openly showed how upset he was, which we found weird, as abruptness is never okay when it concerns customer service. However it seems this city definitely plays with a different set of rules. We were so relieved when we actually found a 1 in a million, that was actually polite and keen to assist.
So before clicking "publish" on this post, I thought to myself perhaps the Czech people was only rude to us and it could perhaps be a isolated situation. I then went to the trusted MR Google & typed in "Why is Czech people so rude? And crazy enough there were actually many articles written about it. Surprise Surprise!
On our final day in Prague we were at a tram station and had no idea how to buy a ticket, we asked for assistance from a person working there and they were so abrupt and just answered insert the money and walked away. We then needed to use the bathroom and inserted 5 koruna to open door, but the door ended up being jammed. We again asked for assistance and the guy merely shrugged his shoulders and refused to assist and walked away.
Getting ripped off by taxi drivers seems to be another trend within Prague, Czech Republic. We experienced this when taking a taxi to the Charles Bridge, and then when we took a taxi back we ended up paying almost double. The taxi driver swears he took the quickest route even though we knew that we were driving on the outskirts and in circles which meant an more Koruna.
I must say this horrid and unfriendly service received from the Czech people only dampen the city by about 20% and the remaining 80% is firmly held at the breath taking architecture and beautiful landscapes. Has anyone else experienced this when traveling to Czech Republic?

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Woman who wear black, lead colourful lives!

So I thought I’d do a little catch up post on what’s been happening in my life lately.  A bit of background, so about 2 and a half months ago I went in search of the perfect roller-coaster, passion igniting, inspiration seeking & growth developing journey I could lay my hands on!
I came to a place in my life whereby I felt completely complacent and stagnant in my growth path to say the least. I wasn’t being challenged mentally neither, stretched physically. The life I had created for myself was comfortable. Yes, comfortable is a great place to be at, but I needed more. I needed something to set my heart on fire. I needed to feel passionate about something and it’s sad to say that the passion I had, I’ve exchanged for comfortability and complacency.
So after a few months of deep soul searching, and trying to figure out what would make me happy. I realised that I actually was not happy at all, in the space I was at professionally. The excitement and the passion for learning is what drives me. Experiencing new things is what excites me. The prospect of growing and becoming something and someone new through each process is what makes this journey interesting. So when the realisation hit that this was not it. I went on a scary journey in search of it, or merely to find the passion igniting person I have lost along the way…

This blog has become such an integral part of my life, it’s literally where I write, let lose my thoughts, and create something that I can be proud of. I never thought that this blog would actually become my way out and allow me to re-awaken my passion every single day. This blog has given me the space and opportunity to travel to places that I’ve never thought I’d find myself at. Experience things I would have never even thought of trying and live a life that is driven by passion and authenticity. I wake up every morning driven and inspired to make the most of each day.
On the home front, hubby and I are currently doing a bit of renovations. It’s all literally just started and I’m already over it. I’m not a neat freak at all, but the amount of dust wallowing around is even starting to get a creative, twitching. However I’m rather excited to see how it all turns out.
My little home office/blogging space has taken quite a few months to get started, and slowly but surely it’s starting to take shape. The cupboards & storage for the space actually only arrived yesterday, so I cannot wait for hubby to set it up over the weekend. Will definitely show you all how looks once it’s done. YAY!
So what am I doing right now… besides writing this post to you at exactly 07.43am? I’m drinking a very strong cup of coffee, & trying to take on life one day at a time. I’m currently prepping for exams which is literally on my door step, and in-between all of the craziness that happens within my home I’m trying to bring YOU, yes YOU my readers the best content I can find.
I have never been as motivated and dedicated to what I plan to achieve as what I am right now. Once we decide what we want and actively work towards it, everything will fall in place. There is so many exciting things coming up on the blogging front, I cannot wait to share it all with you. Don’t worry I’ve got a few special things planned for my readers too, this space would not be what it is without all of your support. Massive Thank YOU!!!!

PS. We have just reached over 6000 followers on our FB page, this is a small amount but I am very happy with the growth and all the individuals that has stuck it through with me for this long.
And, with that said... Woman who wear black, lead colourful lives!
 
Dress: Foschini
Jacket: Foschini
Shoes: The Fix
Sling: H&M
Neck Piece: Gift from Sister
 
 

International cult drugstore make-up brand, L.A GIRL

If this is the first time that you are hearing about or seeing the L.A Girl make-up brand. All I need to say is where have you been? The L.A Girl make-up brand has been dominating the social media spheres and it’s quite clear as to why. The brand is positively known for it being an affordable, great quality international cult drug store make-up brand & with that said I’ve been seeing quite a few professional make-up artist proudly walking around with L.A Girl products in their kits which just goes without saying how great these products actually are.

I was beyond excited when I managed to get my hands on one of the L.A Girl GLOW blush palettes. The L.A Girl blush collection offers 4 gorgeous blush palettes such as GLOW, PINKY, SPICE & GLAM. Each collection pairs two shades of blush with a co-ordinated bronzer and highlighter to provide calculated colour harmony. These palettes are intensely pigmented for longevity and effect- tailor made for those make-up divas. Each palette instantly contours when bronzer is applied to the cheeks, blusher to the apples of the cheeks and highlighter above the cheekbones and on the brow bone. The blendable colour has both matte and shimmery finishes for a multi-dimensional colour statement.
The L.A Girl blush collection palettes are priced at R99.95 each and are available exclusively at Dis-Chem pharmacies nationwide.
Life is short, buy the Lipstick. I love a good matte lipstick but these L.A Girl matte flat velvet lipsticks has become my favourite. If you are looking for great colour pay off and amazing fashion forward shades this is the lipstick just for you. I just love how these lippies are filled with moisture, they literally glide on like silk on lips. Shea butter has been added to assist with hydration so that lips feel as good as they look.  You’ll be breaking the colour rules without breaking the bank.
The L.A Girl matte flat velvet lipsticks are priced at R49.95 each – so why just buy one? Did you know? You can now purchase these products online too. Check out Dischem.co.za
I've got a competition currently running on Facebook whereby you can stand a chance to actually win L.A Girl Blush Palette in Glow. All you have to do is follow the link: here & enter!

Sunday, 7 May 2017

… something must have changed!

I am currently stuck in a complete fashion rut. Yes I said it. I am in a space in my life whereby I actually question every item in my closet, nothing seems to match. Nothing seems to actually fit and I’ve got one too many “what was I thinking??!!” pieces. Nothing in my wardrobe makes sense at all. Every morning it literally takes me hours to get dressed, and eventually I’ll end up taking everything off and resort to wearing tights a hoodie and a comfy pair of sneakers. I use to love getting dressed up… somewhere in between everything… something must have changed.
I literally sat myself down, and thought about it all. I realized that this fashion rut as I call it, actually all started about 2 months ago, after resigning from working in a space whereby I was surrounded by fashion & trend talk all the time. I have stopped wearing clothing items that I really like. I have for too long resorted to the hottest new fashion pieces instead of just opting for items that I prefer and want to wear. Don’t get me wrong I love a good trend, but when you constantly surrounded by the fast pace environment that is fashion wanting you to move to the newest item when you have just gotten comfortable with the previous one it really can take a toll!
I think in the process of it all I've somehow lost my your own style and complete fashion identity… I've been struggling to walk in a store and purchase clothing, as I would say no & pass it off without actually trying it on to see if it would be something I could like. The realization hit. I have become completely “fashion lazy”. It really got me thinking about the choices I’ve made about what I wear. I then decided to go through my entire closest clean out everything that I didn’t like or want anymore and invest in pieces that fits well and that I actually enjoy wearing. Fashion is suppose to be fun right!
So with that said, I have never quite been a brogues kind of person. I’ve always thought of brogues being such a masculine type of fashion item. Don’t get me wrong when I see individuals wearing brogues I would absolutely love it on them, but not necessarily on myself. My style is usually either very feminine or sporty. There is rarely an in-between. However lately I’ve become more open to the idea of playing around with my look and trying out new pieces. These Rubi shoes brogues really surprised me and I can actually say that I’m actively searching for my next pair. They are so comfy, fits really well and gives any look a classic appeal. This specific pair of brogues are rather feminine and I can see it fitting perfectly with quite a few other items in my closest currently. I am actually quite obsessed with this pair!
"Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak." - Rachel Zoe

 Top: Foschini
Denim: Foschini
Brogues: Rubi Shoes
Cup: Cotton On
Earrings: The Fix




Friday, 5 May 2017

Bata Fashion Weekend in Prague!

I have just returned from the most magical time spent in Prague, for #BataFashionWeekend. About 5 connecting flights in total, hours and hours of travel later, all to see the most amazing shoes that Bata has to offer on the runway. The weekend was spent with many great fashion shows, spectacular footwear exhibitions and some amazing historic information about how the Bata brand has grown over the years.

I arrived in Prague on Friday morning and with a group of bloggers, media influencers and magazine contributors from all over the globe. We were taken on a guided tour of Prague which ended off at the 5 storey Bata Flagship store. The store was hustling and bustling with customers and a stunning array of Bata products on display in store. The Bata footwear in Prague was nothing short of amazing, it was on trend, the styles and designs were absolutely authentic which was a great display of the quality and care Bata puts into the product it stocks.
At Bata Fashion Weekend, I had the privilege of interviewing the President of Bata Africa, Mr Alberto Errico and we chatted about the current state of Bata South Africa and the future of Bata South Africa going forward. It is clear that the Bata we got to see in Prague does not resemble what we are currently seeing in the SA market. But that is about to change I was told. Bata is known for catering for the more matured market and the comfort-ability factor will always remain at the heart of the Bata brand. However, there has already been some changes made in Bata South Africa with the sexier footwear options being showcased in the front of the store. The focus will now be on adding more internationally fashionable products, so that there is clear alignment with Bata stores worldwide. Mr Errico also mentioned that when a customer walks into any Bata store regardless of its location, they will be impressed of the trendy and quality type of product offering. This particularly excites me as it would really open a whole new world of footwear to the SA consumer!
I also asked Mr Errico about the weakening of the SA rand and how it will affect the price point and the type of product within a Bata stores, to which his reply was quite simple. The weakening of the rand will always remain a challenge. Bata's aim has always been to create and give the Bata consumer value for their money by providing a good quality product, this is a key trait that the Bata consumer has come to appreciate and love.

The new Insolia technology was also the buzz word on everyone's lips and I was excited to actually have a pair of Bata heels fitted with this Bata patented technology as we headed out for supper in Prague. We walked for a couple of blocks to the restaurant and back to the hotel and I must admit the built in insolia technology really does work. I know for a fact, that I wouldn't have been able to walk that distance without being in absolute pain. The Insolia technology definitely relieved some pressure and allowed me the ability to walk with ease for a longer distance.

"Bata serves a million customers each day with a business model based on quality and accessibility for all. From environmentally conscious shoes to high-tech heels, Bata’s strategic innovation and production is led by a diverse group of real people"
I am really excited about what the future holds for the Bata brand. Watch this space for any new updates and developments. Do follow Bata South Africa Facebook page for more exciting updates. As well as follow my social media handles @ChanniChic on Facebook & @ChanniChic on Twitter to see the #BataFashionWeekend video go live.