Qipao Love ~ Part 15:Beehive and bubble tea with a Cheongsam....in London's Chinatown!

Welcome back my darling readers! Apologies for the larger than usual gap in delivering this post, as my Birthday week was filled with theater, dancing, friends, family and a 1930s bash....so I was delayed in my writing. Thankfully I have picked up with a taster of the fabulous photoshoot I did with Caroline early in May, which is inspired by the groovy 60's looking print on my new Cheongsam (Qipao) from Singapore based store Lark and Peony [here]. The colourful turquoise bouquet of floral print and the significance of the 60s made me even more sure that we should take a stroll down London's Chinatown ....even though it might have been a busy Sunday where tourists as well as local Chinese families gathered for Dim Sum (probably an equivalent of Chinese Afternoon Tea but with lots of savoury dumplings as well as sweet treats). Being spontaneous I decided to invite my dear Rachael along for some fun in Vintage inspired dress up, and Caroline was introduced to her very first Bubbletea (concoction of English tea, sweet milk, ice and tapioca jelly balls). And I absolutely love the unconventionally fun and yummy Bubbletea which we did end up having with some Dim Sum. Ever wondered when Chinese restaurants and takeaways captured the taste buds of Ol' Blighty? Or how Chinatown has come to have such a presence in London today?

Location: Cafe de Hong Kong, Chinatown, London
Dress:  Hsi Shih in Turquoise Vintage Floral...Cheongsam by Lark & Peony [link]
Bag: Vintage...1960s styled 

It was only in the late 1960s that London's Chinatown really became established landmark as we know it today. Many Chinese migrants arrived in London's dockland area as seamen in the 18th Century and gathered their livelihood in Limehouse, but when the Blitz hit London and the shipping industry began declining a new livelihood was sought through food. By the 1950s men had return from war with experience of Eastern cuisine and craved the exotic tastes of the Far East. A few saw the opportunity to make a living and started some Chinese restaurants on Gerrard Street which already had a reputation for interesting cuisine. So when people started seeking out the newly exotic Chinese food it proved to be a success, and more Chinese flocked to the street to set up their own Chinese restaurants, followed by Chinese supermarkets for the local community and then gradually building the Chinatown that we know today. Having lived in London most of my life and sharing a Chinese origin, I know how important Chinatown has become for the modern day Chinese community. For those who live in the suburbs it can be the place to travel to for groceries from Asia, especially if no Chinese supermarket is in sight. For families who have put down British roots it becomes a known place to gather with friends or family scattered further afield on a weekend Dim Sum or dinner meet up (as almost every family happens to have a favourite restaurant in Chinatown), or even a karaoke party to celebrate an occasion....which is usually what I do with my family to celebrate my birthday. [For more on the history of London's Chinatown/Source: www.chinatownlondon.org]

So what better place to start off our 1960s inspired photoshoot than London's Chinatown! From there we continued on to a landmark of London....which I shall reveal in my next post, as well as how I have put together this 60s vintage look, and I will also tell you darlings what I thought of this Lark and Peony Cheongsam (Chinese Dress) in a proper review! Then there is more to tell on my 1930s Shanghai Birthday bash of course, and as I excitedly prepare for my photoshoot this Bank Holiday weekend with Caroline....for the 'Walking In May Exclusive' Cheongsam with the Lady General....I wish you darlings a fabulously sunny May weekend!

Until the next time,
May xx

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~Photos by Walking In May's Official Photographer:


  1. This is absolutely beautiful my dear, you look like you stepped from a movie screen. I've always loved these dresses & remember watching old black and white movies with the ladies wearing them and thought they were so beautiful. You remind me of them :) I hope your birthday was wonderful. This place looks very lovely, I've never been to it, but I will have to go whenever I am in London again. Your bag and glasses also tops it all off perfectly :)) I hope you have a great weekend my dear Xxx

  2. You look so picture perfect 60's siren, just out enjoying a Bubbletea while looking mega glam! I hope you had a wonderful birthday, looking forward to seeing more piccys! Have a lovely weekend! xx

  3. Oh I absolutely love your bag. I have a friend who is obsessed with that particular shade of blue! Nice cat eye glasses too :) x


  4. The print and colours on that dress are just marvellous!! And your glasses and bag are the perfect accessories. Looking lovely, as ever! P x


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♥ May xx
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