I know, February is at our doorstep and I’m discussing books that I’ve read in 2019. The good thing is that not all of these books date back from this past year, so I would say this blog post is quite timeless. 

Reading more was one of my 2019 resolutions, and although I have not read as much as I wished to, I have taken the time to peruse many books along the year. Between novels, inspirational guides and fashion coffee table books, here are a few recommendations for you to start 2020.

THE CLASSIC

The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway

This novel reminded me why I loved Hemingway’s prose so much (in case you didn’t know, I have a Bachelor of Arts in English literature – not that you need to be graduated in that field to enjoy Hemingway but anyway). Set in the mid-1920s in Paris, France and Pamplona, Spain the storyline is quite original. Jake Barnes is in love with Lady Brett Ashley but they cannot maintain a relationship ‘because’ he was made impotent during the war (great and fair isn’t it). Jake loses numerous friendships and has his life repeatedly disrupted because of his loyalty to Brett, who has a destructive series of love affairs with other men although she loves Jake. The novel tackles – in the 1920s already – the topics of male insecurity, the destructiveness of superficial physical attraction, failure of communication and false friendships. Also, they drink all day and night and I am quite surprised they make it until the end of the novel. 


FASHION INDUSTRY & DIGITALISATION

The New Fashion Rules, Victoria Magrath

I’ve been wanting to expand my collection of fashion books, and not only for them to look good on my coffee table. This year in particular, I wish to get a deeper knowledge of the industry and while I spend more and more time perusing the shelves of the fashion section at libraries, I thought that the New Fashion Rules by the curator of Inthefrow.com could be a great addition. Why I found it so insightful? Because she retraces the story of digital retail and highlights the pivotal moments of the fashion world, including the rising of bloggers and influencers, from the early 1990s to now. How has fashion been integrating inclusivity along the years? What are the innovative brands which put forward the latest advancements in e-commerce that we take for granted today? Here you go. 

THE EMOTIONAL ONE

Nos Séparations, David Foenkinos

Apologies for non-French speakers if this novel is not available in other languages, which I am not sure is the case. ‘Our Separations’ tells the story of how a boy deeply in love with a girl and about to marry her screws up badly and, becoming a cheater, loses her and spends his life regretting it. They keep meeting each other at certain moments of their life with an ever-changing life situation. The novel is my favourite among the author’s other novels. The topic is extremely French, as you find yourself making fun out of a tragic situation.

ON FEMINISM

Bad Feminist, Roxane Gay

This book was recommended to me a long time ago by a good friend of mine. This essay by Roxane Gay explores the concept of plurality of what feminism stands for to women. There’s not only one type of feminism (hence the term of ‘bad feminism’ for those criticised for not being in line with the traditional concept – who can be presumptuous enough to define clear lines anyway), and for one ultra-feminists shouldn’t criticise those taking gradual baby steps towards the cause. She praises it as an evolutive concept. Go and grab this book (and follow the author on twitter for spirit and laughs).

SELF HELP

The Life-Changing Magic Of Not Giving A F**k, Sarah Knight

I call it self-help because to stop caring about the stuff you shouldn’t care about is a game-changer. When you realise the amount of stress you create for yourself when you’re trying to please everyone or feeling obliged to do things you eventually don’t want to do, you actually can’t believe it. This book has received a looot of coverage and you’ve probably heard about it 20 times already but if you haven’t read it yet, I insist you do. The book is slightly extreme at times, but the message is right. Stop giving a fuck about stuff that is not worth it, and you will magically have extra time to do exactly what you want to do. Bye.

Along the best advice Sarah Knight could give me last year, I am kicking off 2020 catching up with a very popular (and already a must-read) book: Becoming by Michelle Obama. I’m only 50 pages in and I am already in love with the writing of this novel. Excellent ghost writer (as you can expect when you tell the life of the former POTUS wife and extremely inspirational woman). What about you, any reading you’d like to share?




2019 in Books

Monday, 27 January 2020


I know, February is at our doorstep and I’m discussing books that I’ve read in 2019. The good thing is that not all of these books date back from this past year, so I would say this blog post is quite timeless. 

Reading more was one of my 2019 resolutions, and although I have not read as much as I wished to, I have taken the time to peruse many books along the year. Between novels, inspirational guides and fashion coffee table books, here are a few recommendations for you to start 2020.

THE CLASSIC

The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway

This novel reminded me why I loved Hemingway’s prose so much (in case you didn’t know, I have a Bachelor of Arts in English literature – not that you need to be graduated in that field to enjoy Hemingway but anyway). Set in the mid-1920s in Paris, France and Pamplona, Spain the storyline is quite original. Jake Barnes is in love with Lady Brett Ashley but they cannot maintain a relationship ‘because’ he was made impotent during the war (great and fair isn’t it). Jake loses numerous friendships and has his life repeatedly disrupted because of his loyalty to Brett, who has a destructive series of love affairs with other men although she loves Jake. The novel tackles – in the 1920s already – the topics of male insecurity, the destructiveness of superficial physical attraction, failure of communication and false friendships. Also, they drink all day and night and I am quite surprised they make it until the end of the novel. 


FASHION INDUSTRY & DIGITALISATION

The New Fashion Rules, Victoria Magrath

I’ve been wanting to expand my collection of fashion books, and not only for them to look good on my coffee table. This year in particular, I wish to get a deeper knowledge of the industry and while I spend more and more time perusing the shelves of the fashion section at libraries, I thought that the New Fashion Rules by the curator of Inthefrow.com could be a great addition. Why I found it so insightful? Because she retraces the story of digital retail and highlights the pivotal moments of the fashion world, including the rising of bloggers and influencers, from the early 1990s to now. How has fashion been integrating inclusivity along the years? What are the innovative brands which put forward the latest advancements in e-commerce that we take for granted today? Here you go. 

THE EMOTIONAL ONE

Nos Séparations, David Foenkinos

Apologies for non-French speakers if this novel is not available in other languages, which I am not sure is the case. ‘Our Separations’ tells the story of how a boy deeply in love with a girl and about to marry her screws up badly and, becoming a cheater, loses her and spends his life regretting it. They keep meeting each other at certain moments of their life with an ever-changing life situation. The novel is my favourite among the author’s other novels. The topic is extremely French, as you find yourself making fun out of a tragic situation.

ON FEMINISM

Bad Feminist, Roxane Gay

This book was recommended to me a long time ago by a good friend of mine. This essay by Roxane Gay explores the concept of plurality of what feminism stands for to women. There’s not only one type of feminism (hence the term of ‘bad feminism’ for those criticised for not being in line with the traditional concept – who can be presumptuous enough to define clear lines anyway), and for one ultra-feminists shouldn’t criticise those taking gradual baby steps towards the cause. She praises it as an evolutive concept. Go and grab this book (and follow the author on twitter for spirit and laughs).

SELF HELP

The Life-Changing Magic Of Not Giving A F**k, Sarah Knight

I call it self-help because to stop caring about the stuff you shouldn’t care about is a game-changer. When you realise the amount of stress you create for yourself when you’re trying to please everyone or feeling obliged to do things you eventually don’t want to do, you actually can’t believe it. This book has received a looot of coverage and you’ve probably heard about it 20 times already but if you haven’t read it yet, I insist you do. The book is slightly extreme at times, but the message is right. Stop giving a fuck about stuff that is not worth it, and you will magically have extra time to do exactly what you want to do. Bye.

Along the best advice Sarah Knight could give me last year, I am kicking off 2020 catching up with a very popular (and already a must-read) book: Becoming by Michelle Obama. I’m only 50 pages in and I am already in love with the writing of this novel. Excellent ghost writer (as you can expect when you tell the life of the former POTUS wife and extremely inspirational woman). What about you, any reading you’d like to share?




After over two years of no blogging at all I am finally back on this little curated corner of the internet. There were several reasons explaining this break from writing - namely lack of time juggling with new responsibilities, struggling to translate who I was becoming into my editorial line, and eventually not being proud enough of the content I was producing weekly. However, I have recently experienced this surge in wanting to blog to be back into my life. More surprisingly, after mentioning the topic to a few bloggers and friends, I noticed that I was not the only one.

Nowadays bloggers are such an essential part of the luxury and high street industries that we tend to forget it all started ten years ago (how was the world of marketing even doing before influencers?). Along the years, what used to be a simple hobby developed into a fully-fledged career for some. It is, at the end of the day, only natural that platforms evolve with talented bloggers as they grow – to the extent that they now team up with established brands which were at first sceptical to entrust them.

Café du Sablon, Brussels - @bonjourwhite


Is Instagramming the new blogging? 


I don’t think that anybody could assert that blogging ever grew out of style to be honest. However, one could say that the digital landscape has experienced massive developments affecting industries mentioned above, and the most visible one regards the purple camera icon. Indeed, Instagram has been hugely influencing blogging activities. If the majority of traditional bloggers started using the platform when it launched in 2010, its growing popularity and the diversity of marketing tools its developers make available also created a new type of digital influencers: professional instagrammers. Once described as micro-bloggers due to the limited number of characters of the photos’ captions, brands have grown aware that these new instagrammers are formidable marketing mediums, their messaging being both (hopefully) genuine and suited to – by definition – an interested audience, their followers. In 2019, you can easily double tap on a fashion influencer’s picture and see what clothes they’re wearing, where the accessories come from and where to buy them. Marketing at its simplest – and finest.

If brands still support famous traditional bloggers, they invest their energy and money into instagrammers. Instagram has grown to become the favourite outlet of aesthetics lovers. Alongside Pinterest and its mood boards, no wonder why it is my favourite social media channel.

From bloggers to micro-bloggers


Using Instagram at professional level on a daily basis is a lot of work behind the scenes, don’t get me wrong. But I reckon that posting pictures and collaborating with brands on the platform is still slightly less work than full time blogging. Hence why such a success: you can share and influence through a more direct form of messaging via short captions, curated aesthetics and stories.

We could be tempted to think that Instagram has replaced blogging for some time, but it would not be true. First because bloggers continue to blog, in spite of a lesser activity on their website and a lot of time spent on Instagram. Second because Instagram and a blog do not have the same aim. The audience is also slightly different, as you don’t spend the same amount of time on a picture and reading a blog post. Blog posts may be amazingly illustrated (my favourite will always be Paris in Four Months), they are always richer in content and are conducive to reflexion. Instagram is definitely more marketing-oriented and where spontaneity can be expressed more easily. Instagram stories and their 24-hour post lifespan are one of my favourite things to put online. On another note, a blog is a permanent outlet which will always be out there which success doesn't depend on any social media algorithm. I know it's hard to imagine a world in which Instagram is barely used, but think about the decline in use of Facebook and Snapchat. In a way, investing all your digital effort on Instagram only would be, as a consequence, quite risky.

Whatever the level of involvement online – from professional blogging to influencer instagramming – these digital careers are gradually being recognised by the industry and society at large. Long gone are the days when, during the 2016 Milan Fashion Week, Vogue US Creative Digital Director Sally Singers criticised bloggers and their growing influence telling them to “go find another business”. Or so the blogger community hope.


What about you, are you noticing this surge in blogging? Have you become an avid Instagram scroller to get yourself inspired? What do you think of micro-bloggers? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear what you have to say on this.

In the meantime, keep your eyes peeled as my blog and my Instagram account (@bonjourwhite) are gonna be back in the game over the next months (or so I’d like to convince myself, as I have to learn again how to stick to a schedule and post quality content regularly while dealing with a full time PR job). Stay tuned!


Queen's Gallery, Brussels - @bonjourwhite


Is Blogging Back on Trend or Was It Never Really Outdated?

Friday, 10 January 2020

After over two years of no blogging at all I am finally back on this little curated corner of the internet. There were several reasons explaining this break from writing - namely lack of time juggling with new responsibilities, struggling to translate who I was becoming into my editorial line, and eventually not being proud enough of the content I was producing weekly. However, I have recently experienced this surge in wanting to blog to be back into my life. More surprisingly, after mentioning the topic to a few bloggers and friends, I noticed that I was not the only one.

Nowadays bloggers are such an essential part of the luxury and high street industries that we tend to forget it all started ten years ago (how was the world of marketing even doing before influencers?). Along the years, what used to be a simple hobby developed into a fully-fledged career for some. It is, at the end of the day, only natural that platforms evolve with talented bloggers as they grow – to the extent that they now team up with established brands which were at first sceptical to entrust them.

Café du Sablon, Brussels - @bonjourwhite


Is Instagramming the new blogging? 


I don’t think that anybody could assert that blogging ever grew out of style to be honest. However, one could say that the digital landscape has experienced massive developments affecting industries mentioned above, and the most visible one regards the purple camera icon. Indeed, Instagram has been hugely influencing blogging activities. If the majority of traditional bloggers started using the platform when it launched in 2010, its growing popularity and the diversity of marketing tools its developers make available also created a new type of digital influencers: professional instagrammers. Once described as micro-bloggers due to the limited number of characters of the photos’ captions, brands have grown aware that these new instagrammers are formidable marketing mediums, their messaging being both (hopefully) genuine and suited to – by definition – an interested audience, their followers. In 2019, you can easily double tap on a fashion influencer’s picture and see what clothes they’re wearing, where the accessories come from and where to buy them. Marketing at its simplest – and finest.

If brands still support famous traditional bloggers, they invest their energy and money into instagrammers. Instagram has grown to become the favourite outlet of aesthetics lovers. Alongside Pinterest and its mood boards, no wonder why it is my favourite social media channel.

From bloggers to micro-bloggers


Using Instagram at professional level on a daily basis is a lot of work behind the scenes, don’t get me wrong. But I reckon that posting pictures and collaborating with brands on the platform is still slightly less work than full time blogging. Hence why such a success: you can share and influence through a more direct form of messaging via short captions, curated aesthetics and stories.

We could be tempted to think that Instagram has replaced blogging for some time, but it would not be true. First because bloggers continue to blog, in spite of a lesser activity on their website and a lot of time spent on Instagram. Second because Instagram and a blog do not have the same aim. The audience is also slightly different, as you don’t spend the same amount of time on a picture and reading a blog post. Blog posts may be amazingly illustrated (my favourite will always be Paris in Four Months), they are always richer in content and are conducive to reflexion. Instagram is definitely more marketing-oriented and where spontaneity can be expressed more easily. Instagram stories and their 24-hour post lifespan are one of my favourite things to put online. On another note, a blog is a permanent outlet which will always be out there which success doesn't depend on any social media algorithm. I know it's hard to imagine a world in which Instagram is barely used, but think about the decline in use of Facebook and Snapchat. In a way, investing all your digital effort on Instagram only would be, as a consequence, quite risky.

Whatever the level of involvement online – from professional blogging to influencer instagramming – these digital careers are gradually being recognised by the industry and society at large. Long gone are the days when, during the 2016 Milan Fashion Week, Vogue US Creative Digital Director Sally Singers criticised bloggers and their growing influence telling them to “go find another business”. Or so the blogger community hope.


What about you, are you noticing this surge in blogging? Have you become an avid Instagram scroller to get yourself inspired? What do you think of micro-bloggers? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear what you have to say on this.

In the meantime, keep your eyes peeled as my blog and my Instagram account (@bonjourwhite) are gonna be back in the game over the next months (or so I’d like to convince myself, as I have to learn again how to stick to a schedule and post quality content regularly while dealing with a full time PR job). Stay tuned!


Queen's Gallery, Brussels - @bonjourwhite


It’s happening! After months and months of pondering upon the matter, I am finally resuming blogging on this little corner of internet. It took me a lot of thinking of where I wanted to go with it, and after a while I put my finger on it and eventually decided to take the leap. New year, new blog, right? So please welcome bonjour white 2.0 – I have implemented a new design and new blog categories. If you wish to learn a bit more, you can click here to pop by my ‘about’ section.

Alongside this great announcement, I thought I would write on what 2020 has in stock – and more importantly on what we need to do to explore its full potential. It is this time of the year again – when you take resolutions that you will never truly stick to after a couple of weeks or better, when you actually reflect on the past 365 days to see what went well and what didn’t. Usually I can easily tell you which way it went; this time my 2019 was a fine line to walk on, being made of 6 months off and 6 months on. Closing the chapter with an amazing weekend in Naples.

Instead of coming up with random resolutions, I thought I would pick up what worked for me best this year and apply it overall. Make promises to myself instead, in order to make the most of the upcoming year. (I mean, according to Vogue Italia Virgos are to have a millesimal time ahead so it shouldn’t be difficult.)

Galleria Umberto I, Naples - @bonjourwhite


New year, same you

We all have flaws or bibs and bobs in us we would like to improve or change. But what if we were enough, already? If you feel you are not, then try to look and see why. Please do set yourself goals – quit smoking, exercise more, etc. – but keep the other 99% that make you who you truly are. Do not let anyone convince you that you are not good enough and need to overhaul your entire life. Most of the time, the person we need to convince the most is ourselves. I feel like the community is more and more understanding that self-love and the feeling of being worthy might be the key to happiness. 

Good mind, good vibes

This year I’ve particularly learnt the value of self-discipline when it comes to limiting bad vibes into my life. I truly believe that being happy starts with yourself, not the situation you are in. Although life can get hard and we’re allowed to feel low, eventually I thrive to get back to a more optimistic state of mind. I can remember watching the Netflix documentary HEAL and realising how negative I was sometimes. To the extent that it affected my health (independently from the stress that comes up at work) and how ill I was getting. In my case, I was strongly affected by the transition from Rome to Brussels; a lukewarm city where I only sought professional progress and was unable to see the bright side. Well when I chose to finally open myself fully to the opportunities the city had to offer, among others great friendships, I discovered things from a whole other perspective. Also, just like a lot of people this year I cut off toxic relationships and opened up to new, healthy ones. The people you invest your time in has an enormous impact on your well-being, whether it is on the positive or on the negative side.

Look for what drives you

In between the indulgences of the festive season, I realised how quickly time passes by. Not in a daunting way though. I just feel like I now comprehend what this statement implies: as we get older and more experienced we are not completely aware, I think, of the power we have in our hands over our own life and career. I am 27 and I feel good, confident about what the future has to offer this year – and at the same time very much aware that I’ll be the driver of change of my own life. (Apologies for sounding like a bad motivational book though). Just tell yourself you don’t need to be in a permanent waiting state to reach your objectives. Get out, find what makes you tick, live your life, be happy, don’t hold back.

Piazza del Gesù Nuovo, Naples - @bonjourwhite

At the end of the day, I live for these moments which make your heart pound; those which make yourself gape in awe, realise how lucky you are or how simple happiness can be. In a way, no real resolution needed. I’d like to dedicate 2020 to these moments. My biggest wish this year would be to travel as much for them to multiply, put myself on the path to an eventful year inasmuch as being as serene as possible. What would yours be?

Bring It On, 2020

Thursday, 2 January 2020

,
It’s happening! After months and months of pondering upon the matter, I am finally resuming blogging on this little corner of internet. It took me a lot of thinking of where I wanted to go with it, and after a while I put my finger on it and eventually decided to take the leap. New year, new blog, right? So please welcome bonjour white 2.0 – I have implemented a new design and new blog categories. If you wish to learn a bit more, you can click here to pop by my ‘about’ section.

Alongside this great announcement, I thought I would write on what 2020 has in stock – and more importantly on what we need to do to explore its full potential. It is this time of the year again – when you take resolutions that you will never truly stick to after a couple of weeks or better, when you actually reflect on the past 365 days to see what went well and what didn’t. Usually I can easily tell you which way it went; this time my 2019 was a fine line to walk on, being made of 6 months off and 6 months on. Closing the chapter with an amazing weekend in Naples.

Instead of coming up with random resolutions, I thought I would pick up what worked for me best this year and apply it overall. Make promises to myself instead, in order to make the most of the upcoming year. (I mean, according to Vogue Italia Virgos are to have a millesimal time ahead so it shouldn’t be difficult.)

Galleria Umberto I, Naples - @bonjourwhite


New year, same you

We all have flaws or bibs and bobs in us we would like to improve or change. But what if we were enough, already? If you feel you are not, then try to look and see why. Please do set yourself goals – quit smoking, exercise more, etc. – but keep the other 99% that make you who you truly are. Do not let anyone convince you that you are not good enough and need to overhaul your entire life. Most of the time, the person we need to convince the most is ourselves. I feel like the community is more and more understanding that self-love and the feeling of being worthy might be the key to happiness. 

Good mind, good vibes

This year I’ve particularly learnt the value of self-discipline when it comes to limiting bad vibes into my life. I truly believe that being happy starts with yourself, not the situation you are in. Although life can get hard and we’re allowed to feel low, eventually I thrive to get back to a more optimistic state of mind. I can remember watching the Netflix documentary HEAL and realising how negative I was sometimes. To the extent that it affected my health (independently from the stress that comes up at work) and how ill I was getting. In my case, I was strongly affected by the transition from Rome to Brussels; a lukewarm city where I only sought professional progress and was unable to see the bright side. Well when I chose to finally open myself fully to the opportunities the city had to offer, among others great friendships, I discovered things from a whole other perspective. Also, just like a lot of people this year I cut off toxic relationships and opened up to new, healthy ones. The people you invest your time in has an enormous impact on your well-being, whether it is on the positive or on the negative side.

Look for what drives you

In between the indulgences of the festive season, I realised how quickly time passes by. Not in a daunting way though. I just feel like I now comprehend what this statement implies: as we get older and more experienced we are not completely aware, I think, of the power we have in our hands over our own life and career. I am 27 and I feel good, confident about what the future has to offer this year – and at the same time very much aware that I’ll be the driver of change of my own life. (Apologies for sounding like a bad motivational book though). Just tell yourself you don’t need to be in a permanent waiting state to reach your objectives. Get out, find what makes you tick, live your life, be happy, don’t hold back.

Piazza del Gesù Nuovo, Naples - @bonjourwhite

At the end of the day, I live for these moments which make your heart pound; those which make yourself gape in awe, realise how lucky you are or how simple happiness can be. In a way, no real resolution needed. I’d like to dedicate 2020 to these moments. My biggest wish this year would be to travel as much for them to multiply, put myself on the path to an eventful year inasmuch as being as serene as possible. What would yours be?

bonjour white