Life Updates

Summer Update 2018 – Regent St

I can’t quite believe my time at Regent Street is fast-approaching its end! The past 3 months have been an absolute whirlwind of stress, excitement, tiredness, and happiness. (Cliche, I know.)

Whilst studying at Reading University, I started working in retail part-time. Before I knew it, June had arrived and I knew it was unfeasible to travel to and from Reading during the summer holidays (despite desperately not wanting to leave for 3 months!). I was lucky enough to be given the opportunity to work at the London store, which also happens to be the global flagship for the company, too. Going from a store where,  in total, there were 35 of us to a store of 125 members of staff was an absolute killer for my social anxiety, but the staff and management opened me with welcome arms.

Coming towards the end of my summer stint in central London, I can honestly look back and say this summer was one of the best I’ve had. Working full time in retail is exhausting but being able to work in a fast-paced environment with people who have become great friends is something I’ve been so blessed with. I was lucky enough to cross paths with managers who went out of their way to help me progress further within the company by training me up and most importantly, pushing me to better myself.

One of the categories within the store is sportswear and during the first month, I decided that would be the category to specialise in. Considering the company are always bringing out new collections and working on developing the category, I figured it would be a great place to start learning about how exactly retail works and what goes on behind the scenes. One of my managers, in particular, trained me up on everything sport-related, from USPs to KPIs to the technology of fabrics used; I never thought in a million years I’d be able to look back and say I’ve learned so much from working in retail and had such fun learning, too. I’m super excited to get back to Reading and put everything I’ve learned/been taught to good use!

Thanks for a beautifully wild summer, Regent Street. I’m sad to leave you behind.

(But let’s be honest, I am absolutely thrilled to be heading home to my Reading family soon!)

A x

[Featured Image: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/retailandconsumer/10875969/Regent-Street-to-deploy-beacon-technology-in-shops.html]

 

 

 

 

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Life Updates

Back to Work!

Ah. After five weeks of unemployment, I can’t possibly express how nice it is to finally have a job again, especially one I adore so much.

Thankfully, I’m back working in menswear at the same company as before, but this time in a better location and at an A list store! I’m just over a week into my new routine and it’s been absolutely crazy; the pressure of a better performing store is certainly intense at times but it’s something to make the most of. Furthermore, with this job I can now focus more on training to be a merchandiser, although merchandising here is a whole new ball game! From the team to the products, everything is wonderful and I’m super excited to work here until September.

Working in a new store also makes me realise how much I miss my old one! The little family we had back in my old branch was something quite special, and at times I miss having a boss who pretty much let me get away with anything and everything. I was incredibly lucky to have a supportive set of senior staff who looked after me as much as they did and being practically best pals with my department manager. However, leaving the store was the best decision I could have made, especially after having to endure bullying for three months straight by a colleague.

Finally, I’m just grateful to be working again! A health update is pending, but as of right now, working up to 30 hours a week is just what I need at this point – not only does it serve as a brilliant distraction, but it’s also a hell of a lot of fun. It takes my mind of all the crappy stuff going on with my health right now, and I don’t have time to wallow in self pity/think about pain whilst I’m running around the shop floor.

So thank you to my old work family for transforming me into a menswear ace, and I look forward to great new adventures with my new menswear family.

Ciao, and Ramadan Mubarak!

 

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Quotes

– Delacroix –

“A volcanic crater artfully concealed behind bouquets of flowers.” – Baudelaire on Delacroix 

“Delacroix speaks a symbolic language through colour itself.” – Van Gogh 

“Even when we look at nature, our imagination constructs the picture.” – Delacroix 

“Oh! Young artist, you want a subject? Everything is a subject, the subject is yourself.” – Delacroix 

Source: National Gallery

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Original Writing

A Day of Galleries!

Not only did I have the privilege of visiting Tyler Shield’s exhibition last Thursday, but we somehow managed to stumble across a small gallery hidden away amidst a row of shops in Leicester Square! The gallery showcased some of the finest pieces of art, varying from sculptures to paintings to holographic images representing significant criticism of current society.

The prices of these pieces started at £32,000, which sheds some light as to why the owners of the gallery didn’t even try to approach us. Snobbery in a gallery is something I find quite distasteful, hence why I won’t mention the company! Nevertheless, both myself and my friend had a great time examining the works on display, and we were kindly allowed to take pictures of our favourite pieces.

The magic of holography

‘Elvis Lives’

IMG_6619

A x

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Original Writing

A Week of Good News!

Last week was possibly one of the best weeks to date, and one of the happiest.

As I bid a sad farewell to Roehampton in November last year, I had roughly a month to reapply for university before the deadline this month. This included getting all my references and a phenomenal personal statement ready in 4 weeks; quite possibly the most stressful period of my life. Considering people had already submitted their applications in October, I was already at a disadvantage but I sent mine off just before Christmas in the hope of hearing back from my chosen universities by the beginning of 2016.

Despite a couple of rejections from London-based universities (perhaps I was aiming a little too high, perhaps their standards are too high for me) I received an unconditional offer to study English literature at one of my top choice universities. No interview, no applicant day, just a guaranteed place! It feels pretty amazing and the course itself is just that, too. All in all, I am hugely relieved. I’ve heard wonderful things about the place from so many people, and I’m so glad to be getting out of London! Despite knowing I’ll always be a Londoner at heart, the prospect of studying in a whole new environment sounds very appealing and refreshing.

I also received some very promising news regarding my future at my current place of work. Over the Christmas period and presently, as I’m sure most of you have read or picked up on by my continuous ramblings of it, I’ve been working for a pretty well-established clothing company in London. Initially, I was working as a seasonal sales assistant and my contract as a seasonal sales assistant is soon to be coming to an end. However, after meeting with my managers, they’ve offered me a permanent position and I couldn’t be happier. Sure, the customers can get awfully rude at times and sure, my manager can be a total pain in the butt 98% of the time but ultimately it’s been the best fashion retail experience of my life and that’s saying something. I can’t wait to eventually (and hopefully!) work my way up the ladder, broaden my horizons and take on all the challenges thrown at me. The team at work, from my floor manager to the cashiers, are simply incredible so I’m ecstatic to be given the opportunity to work with them at least up until September. (Side note to my boss: thanks for hitting up my website as often as you do, and for putting up with me. I love working for and with you, Azza.)

So amidst a week of good news and reconnecting with treasured old friends, I’m one happy girl. I’m also reaching the 13k milestone of views on my blog which is another huge achievement for me. But, I couldn’t have done it without the endless support from you, my loyal viewers and cherished friends.

A x

 

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Original Writing, Project London

Camden Won’t Stop Loving Us

I used to visit Camden religiously when I was around 17; I would be there virtually every week and I’d happily spend the evening/night soaking up the atmosphere which is quite possibly like no other in London. The town is branded for its residents: week smokers and hipsters, although I can’t say I agree with the stereotypes associated with Camden Town.

Camden is unmistakably the most cultural part of London, with it’s food and artwork markets (HEAVEN) which very much adds to it’s appeal for the youngsters. I’ve also realised that it’s the people you experience this vibrant town with that make it all the more fun!

Here are a few snaps I took from yesterday’s visit:

A x

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Original Writing, Project London

Saatchi Lovin’ (4th Time Round)

I seem to have this obsessive desire to revisit the Saatchi Gallery every couple of months, and every single time I go every one of my senses is assaulted by the distorted beauty of the pieces on display.

This time round, I was rewarded with new exhibitions which are actually ending in a couple of days and I nearly cried. I really ought to stop getting so emotional at art galleries. (Unlikely) Until the 4th January, Saatchi are hosting exhibitions including Thailand Eye, Carmignac Photojournalism Award, Prints and Originals Gallery and UK/RAINEThese are absolutely phenomenal pieces of art, ranging from sculptures to paintings, photographs to films, from across the globe and the best exhibitions to date at the gallery.

My favourite exhibition from the gallery was the Photojournalism Award; a select handful of journalists from around the world shared their visual and personal experiences in war-torn or poverty-stricken countries who receive biased or virtually no media coverage. All photographs are aided with commentary from the journalists. I cannot commend these people enough for their work, as it’s such an imperative eye opener to the concept of censorship that we’re unwillingly obliged to accept in today’s society.

Here’s a few pictures I took from my visit!

Please do check it out if you’re in London!

A x

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