Friday, February 29, 2008


Niti was the first one to correctly guess that I was of course, dressed as Wonderwoman. (Niti - can you leave your address in the comments please - I won't publish it).

Thanks everyone so much for playing along, it was so much fun to read all your comments. People who actually know me didn't guess correctly! I'm definitely going to do another competition soon.

Looking at this actual photo of Wonderwoman my first thought was; that's not what Wonderwoman wears! Where's the blue cape, the woolly tights, the er, red Clarks sandals? Then I realised that my mother must have very wisely toned the costume down for me. (I still insisted on dressing as a prostitute on Halloween the following year - snood as a skirt, nice!)

And Brown Paper Bag Costume: if I could remember who you were, I'd give you a prize too. I crack up every time I look at it - the matching brown slacks and shoes just kill me.

Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008


I'm giving away a copy (thanks Penguin!) of The Meaning of Sunglasses - A Guide to (Almost) All Things Fashionable, written by Hadley Freeman, deputy fashion editor of the Guardian and contributor to Vogue. I'll let the winner make up their own mind about the book, but it's a very light read, full of pithy fashion related observations that are best taken in small bite size chunks.

To win the book, look at the following picture of well dressed young groovers at a fancy dress party, taken sometime in the early 1980s.

The first person to correctly identify which partygoer is me in the comments gets the book. This is not quite as easy as it sounds, since I am not given to flooding the internet with images of my likeness.

So, from left to right, am I:

1) Little Red Riding Hood
2) Miss Japanese
3) Wonderwoman
4) A Bee
5) Brown paper bag person

Good luck!
I'll announce the winner on Friday (don't forget to include an email/link so I can contact you)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


1. The N key on my keyboard is broken and only randomly works sometimes.
2. I'm getting a cold. Or possibly mumps - I feel grumpy.
3. There are builders laying flooring in the flat upstairs so I went to a free wi-fi cafe to work away from the noise. After about 10 minutes someone started drilling, sawing and banging behind the bar. For the next two hours.
4. I got a headache and decided I should eat something. The only thing to eat was a burger.
5. After ordering and paying (£8!) for the burger I went back to my laptop and the wi-fi connection died.
6. I ate the gross burger, couldn't re-connect so went home.
7. I walked into my bedroom to see bits of plaster from the ceiling all over my bed and half of the chandelier.

I'll be back tomorrow with a superfun and non grumpy competition/giveaway.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


one) When I was at school and had pages from Vogue and Elle plastered over my entire bedroom, I asked The Coolest Girl In School (who was awarded this title as her older brothers had both been in prison) if she read Vogue. Her response, which I've never forgotten was; "Nah, full of fackin' French adverts ain't it?"

two) I was showing a friend who doesn't read blogs, and whose interest in fashion is limited to what looks cute/flattering on her, some of the blogs I read. When we got to The Sartorialist she exclaimed, "What a funny thing to do! Why would anyone want to look at that?" Cue me fumblingly trying to explain how many millions of hits it gets and how really really famous and successful Scott Schuman is.

three) The cover of this month's British Vogue screams: BANGLES - the new status accessory. Zzzzzz...


Even though I'm not buying anything at the moment, I bought something. The ubiquitous peep toe ankle boot (which looks like it's not going away) finally sucked me into its evil toe soaking (that's soaking in the rain, not toe sucking) orbit. What I wanted was: A pair of inexpensive black or grey peep toe ankle boots, with laces or without, with a cone heel of no more than two inches, preferably less, to wear with skirts and dresses. And tights/socks of course.

I knew I could find some cheap high streety ones so off I went.
The problem is, they're all so high - or rather, more accurately, "They're soooo hiiiiggghh," in a whiny voice. Like these from Topshop:

Even a well practised transvestite would have trouble maneuvering in these. Actually this picture makes them look less scary than they are in real life. For proportion's sake, they need a fairly high heel to balance them, and I don't do high heels since I broke my foot last year. Also, these would make me about 6"3.

So - onto some gorgeous grey suede All Saints peep toe lace ups with a sort of little heel on top of a wedge heel. Oh, they were so beautiful but they're not on the website yet. They didn't look that high but when I stood up in them I knew they'd stay in the wardrobe with the rest of my heels. I needed daytime clomping around shoes. I've done oxfords, I've done slightly heeled oxfords; I didn't want to get those flat pull on ankle boots everyone's got - again from TS. I had started thinking about desert boots but came to the conclusion that I might look like a middle aged geography teacher (not that there's anything wrong with that). So I just wanted some flat ankle boots that weren't what everyone else was wearing.

Then I stumbled upon these funny boots.

I was so not sure, since there's something possibly Riverdance about them. They're sort of dorky but the thing I like is that, well, I like them. But I haven't seen one other person in London wearing anything like them. Reception has ranged from, "They remind me of the boots women wore in the wild west, you know with those petticoats" to, "When are you putting the calipers back on?"

I'm getting too old to confidently go forth with the "you'll all be wearing them in six months so I don't care" attitude and I wasn't aware of being inspired by anything until I remembered seeing these - and these.

Of course, the internet. I do find it strange that there's me - on the internet all the time, clicking away being inspired by what I see, rather than the old fashioned way of being inspired by people on the street, which limits you to the place where you live. It does lead to you getting sort of out of sync - there are so many little internet fads: fuelled by etsy shop updates that vanish within half a second, by something going round all the blogs - but those don't generally happen at the same time as they hit the general mass. Actually I keep seeing things in High Street shops that are heavily *inspired* by things I'd seen in various good etsy shops a few months before; so their designers must be online just as much as I am. It's good and bad I suppose - everyone in London thinks my (now rolled away as I'm bored of it) For Like Ever poster is really original.

Monday, February 18, 2008


Last Friday I decided to go and check out the collection Lou Doillon did for Lee Cooper jeans in person. I'm not usually one for celebrity endorsements but I haven't found jeans I like for so long and this video had me convinced. Watch it - no really, watch it first. (I love the bit where she's speaking about her inspirations in French and halfway through says "Artful Dodger" in a completely straight English accent. And the little song...)

I looked on the Lee Cooper website (which is shite by the way) and failed to find a single stockist listed that was anywhere near London. It also barely mentions the Lou connection.
I knew there was a Lee shop in Carnaby Street so I went down there, found no sign of Lou so berated the staff and manager for about ten minutes for their lack of knowledge of their own brand, explained who Lou Doillon was, berated them a bit more for not promoting the hell out of the Lou Doillon thing and then realised that LEE and LEE COOPER are completely separate jeans companies. My favourite quote from this exchange was from the very sweet LEE manager who said; "No, Lee Cooper, that's like, um, bad. I think it's only sold in Madhouse (really cheesy discount jeans outlet) or somewhere."

By this point I was seriously confused and then I went into Topshop and accidentally threw a shoe at someone but that's another story.

So this morning I actually telephoned the Lee Cooper headquarters which is in SLOUGH of all places and asked about the collection. It turns out that although the range was launched last November, that was in a proper showing the spring range in autumn way and it will be stocked only in Harrods from mid March. Which should just about turn around Lee Cooper's fortunes and yank them out of obscurity - especially since she's signed on to do sixteen pieces per season for three years.

photos from Vogue Paris Dec/Jan

Thursday, February 14, 2008


I almost forgot to post these photos by Gia Coppola.
I wonder if any Coppolas exist who aren't creative and who work in insurance or something...

Loads more of Gia's photos here and here


 I did a guide to cheesy Valentine's gifts for nesters over here.
Novelty heart shaped red things rock!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


You might have noticed I haven't done my usual "these are all the things I'm getting from A.P.C. this season" post. Well, I do like to flick through the actual paper catalogue before making up my mind; but this season both the online catalogue and the paper one only made things worse. It made me think things like, "Oh." "Um." "Okay." And, "Will someone please give that girl a sandwich before she passes out."

So I blamed it on the poor emaciated and anaemic looking model. (Sorry model - you're probably just really young and naturally gangly though I saw you in ES magazine last Friday and you looked fine.) Oh for the days of Valentine F-C, Lou Doillon, Frankie Rayder (OK that was way back) - even that grumpy looking one who did summer 2007 - bring back grumpy - she had spark!

The way the catalogue was styled (by Camille BW!) and designed (by M/M!) just didn't really do much for me. Which was kind of odd as I've been buying the majority of my clothes from A.P.C. for the past fifteen years. I was thinking there might be something for me if I waited until Shop and Liberty had enough stock to go and try on there.

So it was with great relief that I stumbled (thanks to Erica) on some scans from the lookbook here. Soooo much better. (Different clothes, different model)

And I'll be requesting a lookbook from now on.

(But ooh, I just noticed the paper catalogue just says printemps (spring) - maybe there'll be another one for summer?)

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


I finally got around to photographing my little winter projects: I knitted this neckwarmer in um, November. It was supposed to be a scarf but I did too many stitches and it was going to take forever so I changed it into this:

And I had that old Miu Miu coat re-lined in the Morning Glory Slate fabric (ahem, that no one liked!)

I haven't been buying any new clothes at all. (I got hit with a humongously terrifying tax bill which I should have put money aside for but really who does that? Besides, I didn't know how much it was going to be.) Anyway I'm now in the make do and mend frame of mind, which, being a bit of a frugal hoarder I secretly slightly enjoy - as long as it's only temporary.

I remember my grandmother telling me that during the war she made herself a skirt suit out of my grandpa's old overcoat. Things aren't quite that bad yet, but I do enjoy taking stuff apart and making it into something else.

Now I'm onto spring projects, my thriftyness knows no bounds. I'm starting with taking details off tops that have got damaged/gone bobbly and putting them onto plain t-shirts for the summer. Comme ca:

The top (thank you not very cheap at all Sandro in rue Vieille du Temple) went completely bobbly and horrible after I washed it once and was then unwearable. I've got loads of bits like that, details I really like that I've saved to put on something else.

My other top thrifty tip is to buy flowers once a week. You have something beautiful to look at and you don't feel that you're going without. And you're only spending four or five pounds. Of course in the summer you can just steal flowers out of people's front gardens. (joking)

Monday, February 11, 2008

Saturday, February 09, 2008


Hmmm, kind of like Amish people joined a country club but had only ever watched Star Trek to find out what people wore.

Love the shoes. LOVE the shoes. And the boots. All those funny hats, headbands and silver bits are very necessary; otherwise it would just be a parade of baggy grey poloneck jumpers. Kim Gordon probably swims a lot - or does some kind of weight training. No bingo wings on her.

Ooh, I really like it actually. I haven't liked the past few seasons. Unsexy sexy is much better. Loose jumper, loose skirt, low heel. Kind of recession foreboding or whatever.

I bet Marc's gonna be on his best behaviour when he comes out.
Yep, not a tongue poke in sight.

Watch the video (the one on the left) here.

Friday, February 08, 2008


Excuse us for turning into the weather report; but today in London it is the most fantastically beautiful spring day you could ever wish for. Everyone is smiling at each other and I had to take my coat off because I was too hot. After a lovely cuppa and lemon cupcake at Shipp's I did the whole south bank routine, which was all the better for not having done it for ages. The last photo was taken at the Jean Prouvé designed Maison Tropicale.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008


It's going to be here soon. Also, remember that thing called summer where you don't have to wear hats, scarves or coats? Hmmm, vaguely. It feels weird to be looking at winter 08/09 stuff when I really want to think about spring.

*Built By Wendy Spring/Summer 08 ~ pics from the website*

I find I'm less and less interested in the cycle of fashion weeks; though Paris might hopefully give me a little thrill. But I only really keep one half opened eye on the whole thing now. And as usual I get more from looking at what people are wearing to the shows than what's actually in them. I don't mean that it's not important or relevant (didn't Marc Jacobs once say that the words Fashion and Important should never be used in conjunction?) for the fashion industry,but that my own interest has been moving away towards something else for some time: smaller, but established labels that perhaps don't even show and just make good clothes I want to wear.

At this moment, my thoughts are turning towards spring, watching the change in everything from nature to what people are wearing on the street. Having said that, I'm slightly in love with this winter colour palette:

Boy - Band of Outsiders, Prouenza Schouler
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Monday, February 04, 2008


I never was a pastel pink girl. Never, ever, ever. But through a combination of this and seeing this

on designsponge ages ago, along with purchasing this

I was inspired to

paint my bathroom pink. Or should I say Ladies Boudoir. I know you can't really see in the photo how pink it is. Trust me, it is pink. It is not a sort of blushy, oyster pink as I was planning: it's pink-o-rama in there. But I kind of love it. When else will I be able to have a pink bathroom than now? All I need now is this
light - they call it the Fosse light - love that. My bathroom painting tips would include: when you start to get green dots in front of your eyes from the paint fumes and the room spins when you're painting the ceiling, try to take a break before you start hallucinating.

p.s. thank you so much for all your book recommendations...

Saturday, February 02, 2008


When is Alexa Chung going to get picked as the face of Mulberry? Or perhaps APC. Someone who decides these things needs to get on to this. Karl? Or have T4 got her locked into some unbreakable exclusive contract? Very astute of them if they have. Although Alexa was on a lot of best dressed lists of 2007 her style works best in the way she looks on T4, rather than at assorted premieres as in these pics. Last week on Freshly Squeezed (which is basically Popworld* with that really annoying bloke removed and replaced with less annoying ones isn't it?) she wore this Heimstone dress.
It's quite weird to stumble to your TV, slightly bleary eyed at ten on a Saturday morning and be confronted with a presenter wearing Heimstone to introduce some cheesy boyband. I also love how she manages to take the piss out of them without being blatantly rude. I have refrained from the full on geekery of taking a photo of my telly but I've been wanting to mention Alexa for ages and there still aren't enough photos of her being stylish floating around the internet.

*For non UK readers Popworld was this completely hilarious pop show on Channel 4 presented by Miquita Oliver and Simon Amstell for ages where they managed to piss lots of bands and "artistes" off by being extremely sarcastic. There's an in depth obituary of their comedy genius here. Anyway, when the presenters went on to other things they replaced them with Alexa and the awful, not funny in the least but really thinks he is Alex Zane. Everyone stopped watching it and the show was killed. The it popped back up with a different name but still with Alexa.