#MyMCR: Sophia Rosemary

I often find when I'm looking for restaurants within Manchester, I tend to prefer a more relaxed and unpretentious atmosphere. I'm not one to dress up to the nines, the more homely the restaurant the better.

“I prefer a relaxed and unpretentious atmosphere”
One particular restaurant I love at the moment and one I feel not only perfectly represents Manchester but also neatly compliments my sense of style is The Refuge on Oxford Road.

Situated alongside The Principal  (previously named The Palace Hotel), The Refuge is based in the old Refuge Assurance Building (my mum went for a job interview there when she was a young girl... now I'm dining in it! Oh how times change) which has only newly been refurbished.

“I adore how The Refuge has stayed true to its original features.”
What I adore about this building is how it has stayed true to its original features; green and mustard tiles decorate the entrance hall, huge orange pillars are dotted around the bar area and in the dining area is a huge Victorian inspire sign which reads, "The Glamour Of Manchester" and the restaurant represents just that.

“Glamorous in a Manchester kind of way.”
It's beautiful and awe inspiring yet completely unassuming and welcoming, just like the city. It's the prefect place for me to wear a pretty, yet comfortable dress and my favourite boots. I absolutely adore this crochet maxi dress from Topshop and on a (late) summer evening, it's the perfect design for a casual meal out with friends. Glamorous but in a Manchester kind of way.

When I think of art in Manchester, one place in particular springs to mind - The Northern Quarter! It's fast become the centre of Manchester creativity and its streets are awash with art.

From brick walls to side alleys to double yellow lines, there's no surface in NQ which can't be interpreted as a canvas. What I personally love about The Northern Quarter’s street art is how it generally speaks to the masses, forever voicing what is relevant in modern society.

“There's no surface that can't be interpreted as a canvas.”
We've seen Heisenberg appear painted along Thomas St, Stone Roses lyrics stencilled on roads and in the deeply saddening news of Bowie’s death, his face appeared painted in the centre of Stevenson SQ.

More close to home and, to me, the most inspiring was how NQ Art responded to the tragic events that happened early summer in our beautiful city.

Bee drawings appeared everywhere, "I heart Manchester" decorated our streets and above our buildings a sign reading "We are Manchester. We Stand Together". If Manchester was a person, the NQ would be its heart.

If Manchester was a person, the Northern Quarter would be its heart.

It inspires me every day especially within my style. It's inspired me to dress how I want, in the clothes I like and to be proud of my sense of style. I love a slogan T-shirt and similar to NQ Street Art, I like them to be messages which are personal to me, from music and bands I like, to sayings and political messages I feel strongly towards. In this photo I am wearing a Rolling Stones slogan tee available from New Look and a matching red bucket (not a paint bucket I promise) bag from Topshop.

“I love a slogan T-shirt”