Wild at Heart

Wild at Heart

You can find me staring in awe at all the lovely flowers at Nikki Tibbles “Wild at Heart” flower shop in Notting Hill all day! If you weren’t already gazing at all of the colorful houses on your way to the shop, this will stop you in your tracks.

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image by peoniesandplaces

With bright turquoise green tile, narrow shape and gorgeous blooms you’re bound to gravitate here uncontrollably. It’s a great place to take friends and a must-see for tourists. My big question to them was “when do you get peonies in?” With their answer being May!

Wild at Heart

Visit their site: https://wildatheart.com/

Instagrammers (me included) flock to their bouquet to pose and smell the roses, literally. The people who worked there were running around, making sure their stand stay full. If you’re in the area across the street they have a couple of cute cafes! We tried togo to Farm Girl which was close but the line was out the door. We’ll save that for our next adventure. Something you should know is that the bouquets are pretty pricey, but I think you could assume that by just looking at them! Below is a picture of me in my habitat, amongst the flowers xx

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I didn’t realize this but I wore ALL Zara that day! From shoes, earrings, jeans, top and bag!  Literally my whole closet is Zara. I really wish they worked with RewardStyle so I could put up links for you guys.

Here’s their Instagram: @nikkitibbleswildatheart

Address: 222 Westbourne Grove, London, W11 2RH
T: +44(0) 20 7727 3095
Opening Hours
Monday to Friday: 8am – 6pm
Saturday: 8am – 5pm
Sunday & Bank Holidays: Closed <– FYI
I need to find more beautiful florists shops in London. I am so so addicted to flowers, it’s crazy. I mean, my middle name is Rose so I would understand haha! Really excited to continue to share new content with you guys. I’m going to really try and up my game for you guys xx
If you aren’t already following me on Instagram, you can do it here: @peoniesandplaces
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Hope you’ve had a lovely weekend, and start to the month. It’s April which is absolutely insane. I’m excited for the nice weather but I get nervous about what will happen for me after October. I love London, never want to leave 🙂 But home is where the heart is, so wherever my heart takes me xx
Here’s a link to the shoes from Zara which are still available.
Red Heels: le shoes
Notting Hill is one of my favorite neighborhoods in London, start your day early! You will spend ALL day there. From cafes, to florists, to painted houses, and markets! You will be so so busy. Such a great place to take photos and explore.
Let me know what your favorite London neighborhood is x

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TTYL friends.
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A Love Note to Myself

A Love Note to Myself

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A little late post for Valentines Day but it’s never too late to write a little love note to yourself. I don’t like the idea of Valentines Day too much but I’ve felt more self love lately. As trying to improve my Instagram and get more involved with the fashion community I’ve chosen to incorporate myself into more of my photos.

Ironically I HATE photos of myself and have a huge lack of ability to pose (thanks mom) but it would be great eventually to work with brands I’m a fan of. Luckily, I have friends who are actual models and coach me on how to pose. It only takes one photo out of a hundred to get a decent shot. The spike in followers after London Fashion Week and following posting more portraits of myself has given me a confidence boost.

Where as I’ve been told that posting photos of yourself can be seen as egotistical, it feels freeing for someone who would absolutely cringe at any photo shown of themselves, let a lone be on the other side of the camera. Always was the photographer, never the subject. I can’t take myself seriously anyways, so I’m usually laughing at myself in them.

Thankfully, it doesn’t take much to get a good shot. London has a ton of gorgeous floral facades outside every store to lure in customers and Instagram savvy photographers. With a few tricks given from my model friends we quickly can shoot in front of these lovely locations each other with out too much embarrassment.

Visit Peggy Porschen’s seasonally decked out cafe in Kensington, London.

www.peggyporschen.com

Follow them on Instagram: @peggyporschenofficial

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Anyways, in the love letter written to myself I start with cheers. Here’s to me, excepting to love myself a bit more. To enjoy my silliness, my love of all things visually pleasing and passion for seeing the beautiful corners of the world, photographing and sharing them with like minded others.

My sister reminded me that when I left for London 6 months ago I wanted to achieve all the things I’ve currently have. She told me “Victoria, it happened so fast. You got everything you wanted.” And she’s right.

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve gotten to live in my favorite city, go to London Fashion Week, slowly grow my Instagram, make new friends and blossom as a woman. Self Love, here we are. Crazy how I’ve been able to achieve those things seemingly overnight in the London pressure cooker. I look forward to what the future brings. A key lesson in life is to start the love with yourself and then it will naturally flow into other aspects in your life.

Happy belated Valentines Day to myself  xx

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Palm Vaults: the place of pink dreams

Palm Vaults: the place of pink dreams

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Is Hackney cafe Palm Vaults worth all of the Instagram hype? Quick answer: not really. The other day I ventured to over photographed spot Palm Vaults to see if it was everything I dreamed of and more. While I walked along the the cobblestone road of pretty tacky shops, I finally landed at the cafe. It was unexpected to find it along the “rubbish” so to say. I wasn’t too hungry so I ordered their notorious banana bread and pink latte. Surprisingly the pink latte did taste really good, it did have a hint of beetroot though. The banana bread was tasty but I didn’t have much of an appetite. The place had a great aesthetic, and I loved all of the pink colors it had. From the plates, flowers, drinks, napkins, sauce, carafe, and cups.

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image by peoniesandplaces

You can get the Instagram-worthy shot you crave but besides that the long trip to Hackney Central was not worth the small little spot. The town seemed quaint but I have just recently explored and currently am in  Hampstead Heath and enjoy this town a lot more. It has cozy british vibes written all over it.

You can get the banana bread with either peanut butter or yogurt.

To visit Palm Vaults take the tube or bus to Hackney Central.

Website: http://palmvaults.com/

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Let me know what you think of Palm Vaults. Or recommend another place to visit in London.

To see more of my adventures you can follow me on Instagram: peoniesandplaces

I will run some polls on my  instastory on what I should post next. I truly enjoy your input. Have a great weekend. xxadk_0168

Instagram: 10 Tips to Improve Your Growth in 2019

Instagram: 10 Tips to Improve Your Growth in 2019

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Have a New Years Resolution to grow your Instagram following? Whether you’re a business, blogger or just live to gain an audience, the amount of followers you have on social media is thoroughly important to you. The truth about gaining an audience is that you want to have people who follow you who are genuinely interested in your product, persona or vision. These followers will support you and stick with you if you are resourceful on how they find you. I want you to gain a following on Instagram that will help spread the word about your brand, whether it be personal or corporate. Looking at social media from afar it can seem cold and impersonal. But closeup the influencers that succeed and make a living from it are those who are relatable and engaging.

Something you should know is that any platform of social media promotes the users who engage the most on the site. Those influencers keep their business going, increase user activity and screen time for other followers. You’ll be found more often by using all of the tools the app has to offer, but you also have to realize it takes some grit and monotonous work to be found. For the most part it does not, I repeat does not happen over night.

After numerous research from youtube videos, various apps, lengthy articles and trial and error I have found 10 simple tips to improve your Instagram following. Now, lets go ahead and start with the basics.

  1. POST PLEASING CONTENT
    • This may seem like a naturally given tip, but you’d be surprised with the photography people post and still not understanding why they haven’t gotten over 100 likes or any new followers.
    • You need to provide aesthetically appealing content to add to your gallery. Use apps like Adobe Light RoomColorstoryVSCOAfterlight A Design KitHuji, Facetune and more.
    • Purchase a filter from your favorite influencer to make it easy for yourself.
  2. THEME/COLOR SCHEME
    • This tip is one of the most important tips I’ve learned from my Instagram research. I want to make it clear to you on one of the major reasons why people follow you. So clear that I’ll list it in the bullet point below, in all caps.
    • USERS FOLLOW YOU BECAUSE OF YOUR GALLERY, NOT BECAUSE OF ONE PHOTO.
    • Does that make sense? When someone sees a photo of yours, yes it still has to be pretty and intriguing but once they click on your username they follow and sign up to your posts if they clearly can see a vision of someone and want to see what’s next.
    • Provide your followers with a story, imagery, specific coloring, and curiosity all within a matter of seconds. It’s the layout you provide that will help you do this. Use apps like Colorstory to help arrange your layout in advance.
    • Play around with filters, stick to one or a couple that can be intertwined within each other. In the captions stick to your theme by incorporating either a narrative that’s clearly from a specific perspective or quotes and facts that enhance the photo itself.
    • This also goes along with your username as well. Pick a username that can give someone an idea of what to expect from you. Ex: traveltheworld, foodiegalore, londonismyhometown, pigsandparrots etc. I believe you can always update and change your username through the settings Instagram provides if you’re currently unhappy with your present one.
  3. HASHTAG YOUR A## OFF
    • But really though. Don’t look like #spam #and #do #this #with #every #word #in #your #sentence. Type a few sentences going a long with your post and choose a word or two that is relevant or part of the sentence like “My #mondaymotivation is…” “Today I went to @regentspark and saw the amazing canals, hills and pretty landscapes that London parks have to offer. Always a reminder to #getoutdoors and see the world.”
    • Additionally add some hashtags below your post to have more chances to be found. Type anywhere from 10-20 hashtags that are relevant to your specific post and brand. Hashtags are just another way to be found by someone who doesn’t know of you yet. You can have the best brand, best photos but if you’re not interacting or being proactive with users it doesn’t matter, and no one will find you.
  4. TAG THEM ALL
    • Some influencers don’t understand the importance of tagging other accounts in your photos. Tag your Instagram idols, relevant businesses or users that will likely comment or like your photo too.
    • Tag accounts similar to yours, so that Instagram users can possibly find your profile too.
    • Make sure you tag companies of the products or places in your post, so they can see the photo and either repost it to their large following or comment on your photo (which will provide engagement and likelihood to be seen more on other feeds)
    • On top of that the more you tag  a company the more they’ll become familiar with your page, and they might even follow you. (Yes, this has happened to me)
  5. LIKE EVERYTHING
    • Just do it. Honestly.
    • Liking everything in the first hour of your most recent post is very, very important. I want to say that they push very active users to the top. So, liking and commenting on everything will naturally increase your engagement with others. In return the engagement will push your photo up in the feeds and top posts.
  6. ENGAGEMENT IS EVERYTHING
    • I notice a difference in a influx of likes, new followers or comments the more I am engaging on Instagram.
    • Comment genuine reactions to the photo, or something you noticed that will make the photographer/model smile.
    • Do not comment things like “check out my profile” I find those comments very annoying.
    • People just want to be appreciated for their work. Hold a conversation with them on their comment section, they’ll enjoy and usually reciprocate.
  7. CHANGE TO BUSINESS ACCOUNT
    • Being able to see your analytics is very important to know to gain a following. You can view such categories as age, gender, location, impressions, likes, best times to post, most viewed stories etc.
  8. CAPTIONS
    • Potential followers like to get an idea of your personality not just through your photos but also through your words.
    • Write a caption that captures the photo, or of your current state, mood or something relevant that the user can relate to.
    • Some of my favorite captions are not of those that seem out of a novel, rather those that make me laugh and feel like I have something in common with the instagrammer. (Ex: “feeling anything but bikini ready today after eating a whole pizza pie by myself #oppsie #bikinidiets #ilovepizzatoomuch”) as a picture of the person is of themselves in a bikini from a while ago.
  9. USE INSTASTORY
    • This is the new version of “reality t.v.”
    • It’s like watching mini youtube videos of those you follow without having to leave the app.
    • Use your instastory to keep your following updated on your every move.
    • Additionally, post days where things are not so perfect. Let your following understand how real you are. Sometimes with all of the perfect content they can forget, and they’ll love you more for it.
  10. TOOLS TOOLS TOOLS
    • In any social media platform, the first users experience the most success. This is a formula that drives the company to pat those users on the back.
    • When it comes to new updates such as polls, questions, IGTV, countdowns, etc., use them right away. Now there is no solid proof that Instagram will appreciate you more, but I have a feeling they will.
    • Example: when youtube first came out, the creators who started actively using it first blew up. I think Instagram or any social media is the same.

In conclusion, don’t take yourself too seriously, genuinely enjoy sharing your content, be incredibly active on the platform, stay relevant, engage with other users and be yourself. The first todo things, the ones who take a risk, usually get the reward.

Follow me on Instagram @peoniesandplaces

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The Key to a (free) London

The Key to a (free) London

It’s been just about two weeks since I landed in London. Before I arrived I imagined myself seeing all of the sights, restaurants, bars and Instagram worthy spots. After a few days of realizing I had no source of immediate income coming my way I felt trapped in bed with no where to go. I was in one of my favorite cities in the world, and I couldn’t see it (to it’s fullest potential) Sure, I’ve been in years passed and had already seen most of the touristy things before; but landing in London and trying to keep the excitement alive I wanted to remind myself of why I had came here in the first place.

Most of my days I set off from my new flat on foot, with a mere idea of where I wanted to go. I let a poor GPS connection guide the way and it led me to some unfamiliar and interesting places. Most of the time though, it took me to places I had already scribbled on my lengthy todo list and had almost forgotten about. Like I had mentioned in my previous post “Don’t Make Plans in Paris” the most memorable moments are those that are found off the beaten path.

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image by peoniesandplaces

The main reason I fell in love with London at an early age was because of it’s character, history and it’s architecture. As I strolled along the cobblestone alleyways and foreign roads I came across many of just that. In fact it has been the majority of my journey thus far. Bright colored doors against the historical stone building, iron gates and tiled entry ways. Well this, this is what I came here for.

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Some of the most well known and easy things to view are the Notting Hill homes. They’re famous for their bright and varied colors. Dreamy, I know. Something that I found a lot of in London are vintage cars parked all over the street. I asked my British flatmate if people actually drove these cars and she said yes. As us Americans know, their cars might be cute but they definitely drive on the wrong side of the road. Note: Notting Hill also was home to plenty of quaint cafes and antique bookshops.

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image by peoniesandplaces

If you have time while in London, take sometime to wander the streets and appreciate the beauty of buildings that have been up for centuries. This is something I’ve always felt America lacked. It lacked the quirky personality that a lot of european cities hold. This trait can only exist in time.

The key to seeing London for free is admiring the little details that make it stand out. If I’m going to start and write out as well as document my personal journey of living in a new city, specifically in London. I have to make it known that the first thing I’ve ever fell in love with here, is simply it’s architecture. And you can always see that for free. Also, I do want to list some of the things besides seeing London buildings that I’ve done for free. Whether you’re visiting or a local. Sometimes it’s refreshing to see your city from a new (and affordable) prospective. That I’ll save for another post. Enjoy the rest of your day, wherever you are.

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