Tuesday, January 31, 2012


I had been meaning to get to a screening of Carnage for ages, but for some reason I kept failing to make it. Perhaps I was subconsciously put off by the description of it as tense and fraught. Also knowing it was a stage adaptation (I'm strangely allergic to theatre) I assumed that meant it was one of those actor-y films that big-time actors (in this case Kate Winslet, Christoph Waltz, Jodie Foster and John C. Reilly) do to really "inhabit" their characters and get all luvvie about their "craft." (I'm looking at you, Winslet.) But because it's a Roman Polanski film I finally went along last week. When you're sitting in a screening room full of film critics and everyone is cracking up laughing for all the right reasons you know you're onto a winner. The premise is that two sets of bourgeois liberal Brooklyn parents meet to politely discuss a playground fight between their two young sons in which one of them has been injured. I would imagine it stays very faithful to the play - the action doesn't stray from the four in the apartment, adding to the claustrophobia. Within the first half hour the mask of civil cordiality starts to break down, finally irrevocably. But it's all handled so deftly that the slightest detail can make you wince or burst out laughing. {Carnage is released in the UK on 3 February.}

The Last Nude
When I was poorly a while ago, my very kind friend Lauren (who thankfully will be visiting London soon, which is dull without her) sent me a care package containing all kinds of lovely things. One of those things was The Last Nude by Ellis Avery, an imagined account of the love affair between Tamara de Lempicka and Rafaela, her muse in 1920s Paris. This is the book that dragged me out of my reading drought - a very evocative, gripping read. As luck would have it, my other friend Lauren (who thankfully is MOVING from Paris to London this week) has written a fine review of it here.

Poplin PJs at Avenue 32
I wear mens' style pyjamas - it's one of my things. I say mens' style, not mens' because I don't like that gap they have, you know. For a long time I'd wondered about those silk Olatz pyjamas, that really chic people seem to own and rave about. But those really chic people are clearly also really rich because these PJs cost an arm and a leg (or a Schnabel) and are dry clean only. I don't currently have a maid so I was thinking of going for cotton instead. Olatz pyjamas do come in cotton but they're still priced for the 1% crowd. What I wanted was contrast piping pyjamas  - like Coco Chanel wore. These cotton J. Crew PJs might work now that my favourite stripy flannel Toast ones are falling apart, though I still have my APC Madras cotton polka dot PJs er, and some stripy Princesse TamTam ones. I like pyjamas a lot, ok? I thought you could get the J. Crew ones monogrammed, but maybe I made that up because I can't see that option now. Finally I found Poplin Pyjamas which might just be the answer. The proportion looks a little off but that might be a case of real person proportion photographed on a lanky model. The best thing is it's a London label and you can buy them from Avenue 32, also UK based, making things less complicated for me with shipping than J.Crew. I might go for the Shrimpton.

Thursday, January 26, 2012


Some of you might remember my story about my granny's Wedgwood teapot and some may not have retained that crucial info. Go on, go back and read it, it's really long. But basically, it was a charming tale of old world courtesy and civility involving my granny breaking her Wedgwood teapot, the design of which had been discontinued, thus rendering her extensive tea service incomplete. After a number of polite exchanges, she was miraculously sent another teapot free of charge, due to the thoughtfulness of a Wedgwood employee. The story ended with me lamenting the modern world and noting that Wedgwood had recently gone into liquidation, had been bought out by a foreign equity group and all production was moved to China. I doubted that the lid, which had been broken recently (ahem, not by me) could ever be replaced, or that I would even get a response to a polite email to Wedgwood these days.


The other day I got a comment on my Teapot Story post, which I'd written almost exactly a year ago to the day. A very kind person (please tell me who you are so I can thank you properly) tipped me off that there was a teapot lid for sale on ebay. I bid. I won. I'm guessing there aren't that many people searching for a 1950s/'60s Wedgwood Summer Sky teapot lid, sans teapot out there?

The lid arrived today - as I ripped open the package like a greedy child I felt sure it would be the wrong lid, it wouldn't fit, or would be the wrong colour.

But it wasn't! My teapot is now justly re-crowned. I feel sure that had my granny known the Internet existed before she died, she would thank it now and marvel at the magic of it.

I raise my teacup to you Internet - you're too good to me - and what a perfect 21st century ending to the 'ol teapot story.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Tuesday, January 17, 2012


On the first morning of Capsule in Paris last October, after moonlighting as Nina of Family Affairs' slightly cackhanded steaming expert and early morning coffee companion at her stand, I made a beeline for Colenimo's.

I'd already had the honour of being Colenimo's first ever webshop customer, when I bought my lovely Amelia jumper, but I wanted to get a good look at spring/summer 12, which I loved. I didn't know until just now that it's inspired by Paper Moon, one of my favourite films of the 1970s. Set during the Great Depression, directed by Peter Bogdanovich and starring real life father and daughter Ryan and Tatum O'Neal who are both amazing in it. 

Love that scene. They were so good together. And then later in life... not so much. 

Colenimo very sweetly let me choose one of their polaroids of the lookbook - I took the one nearest to the centre bottom in the photo above, with the sun. 

A couple more pictures I took of the collection at their stand. As always, liking the detachable collars. 

And a couple of pictures from the lookbook, which you can see in its entirety here - I've got a feeling the Colenimo webshop is going to be getting a hasty order from me for the faded indigo shirt (above left) for starters.

{Clip from Paper Moon, first 3 photos by me, lookbook photos by Jenny & Lee}

Sunday, January 15, 2012


Richard Avedon
Richard Avedon, Vogue 1973
David Bailey, UK Vogue 1973
Richard Avedon, Italian Vogue, 1971
Bob Richardson
Bob Richardson
Bob Richardson
My early '70s Anjelica Huston phase is ongoing. It was inevitable after the Elsa Peretti phase, although I initially thought I was veering more towards '70s Paloma Picasso. The new copy of Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel (more on that later) I've been flicking through gives another view on the magic  triangle of Vreeland/Avedon/Huston - those pictures are still so inspiring, in a way that no modern editorial is - to me - and you know I'm not usually all about everything being vintage/retro. But damn did they like putting her in fur - that's the reason I was hesitant to post these pictures that have been languishing on my desktop for ages, as I do not condone the wearing of it. That and the hour and a half it took me to find all the credits. (Put credits, people, credits!)

Wednesday, January 04, 2012


New year's tasks: writing everyone's birthdays in the new moleskine (I always have this red one) wearing my Family Affairs Good Spirit dress just seen on the right and repairing clothes - mostly sewing on buttons etc but I finally sewed elbow patches on my old fave APC cashmere jumper that my pointy elbows had escaped from after five years of almost daily wear. 
Items: I was given some money for Christmas, which my bank account swallowed whole for some horrifying/semi-bankrupting expenses - but I've managed to choose some lovely necessities as well. Rose Day Cream Light is so good for my red, sensitive skin - it makes it all velvety and calm - so much so that I feel like I can go out without make up, which I hate wearing. When you have a problem with redness, make up almost makes it look worse, or like what you're attempting to cover up is worse than it is. And Anabela's Dreamcats Calendar - I can't wait for these daft adorable kitties to help me remember what day it is every day...
Gold arrow bracelet: this is my little Christmas gift to myself - for protection, to remind me to go forward, stay moving in the right direction - and because I like arrows. 
The January daylight situation. This is how light my bedroom is for a few hours a day before it gets dark again. We shall overcome.