Friday, 16 August 2013

Who says orange is dangerous?

 Why are certain colours considered more dangerous than others? Why are some colours genuinely more dangerous than others? There is no doubt that, in the animal kingdom, certain colours will be a warning. Take the wasp (vile things which should be eliminated, or at least controlled/domesticated because I know they get rid of parasites. One landed on my upper lip today while I was eating outside and it wouldn't go away. I almost cried) which is striped yellow and black, as a warning to potential predators. On the one hand, this is where nature genuinely proves it can highlight danger. On the other hand, this yellow and black striped shell (metaphorically) is also favoured by the generally less foul tempered Bee and those flies you always think are wasps, as a way to trick potential predators.
Above all other colours, I think orange must be a dangerous colour, though we'd often consider black or red more so. By that, I do not mean that that orange can be a risky style choice that doesn't suit everyone, which is true. There is something about Orange that does not entirely feel quite right, something vibrant and eye-catching and unwilling to blend. If you've ever seen a field of Oranges or a house painted orange, you might understand what I mean. It is not mellow but bright like yellow. Or as popular as red. Or a timeless as black

Anyway, today (or rather yesterday, but *shrugs*) I am wearing orange, with black. Yippee! In line with the current fashion for crop tops and a high-waist black skirt.

With this, my lovely (if I do say so myself) union jack heels, orange bag, necklace and orange ribbon.


I really wish this were longer and, if I can, I will edit it tonight to make it longer and it should have been longer if I'd been less flippant with time, but this is me literally leaving right now for Carcassonne and I don't think they have internet in that part of France (fine, fine, in the house we're renting) Apparently, with a deep sigh, this is one of the busiest weekends of the year for road traffic... which should be fun.

Thanks for reading, do comment and please follow.

Monday, 12 August 2013

Is Fashion self-destructive?

Is Fashion self-destructive? Oddly enough, it is a phrase that has never much been used much in conjunction with Style and Creation, but is arguably fitting. Anything else which completely broke itself down to its core every season, or every couple of seasons, for no apparent straight-forward reason would be considered unhealthy and non-viable for good business. In any other field, when something works, you push it until sales stop dwindling to a economically unsure level. Somehow, fashion is a bubble which has missed out on this area of good business in a most spectacular way for, in Fashion, if you don't re-create yourself constantly, you don't sell. In some ways, it is an anomaly.

It isn't so much the fact that the Chanel Resort 2012 plastic shoes made even the most experienced model's feet bleed, that Sisley scrawled 'Fashion Junkie' (In other words, fashion victim) across their clothing adverts or that openly provocative practises are linked with fashion in self-made adverts.

 Fashion has a funny way of embracing those who actively, whether ironically or not, seek to destroy it. It is a sort of dark glamour that the fashion crowd keep begging for - Punk and anti-fashion taken to the forefront. Take, for example, Moschino. His designs were very innovative and unusual, parroting things such as a quilted black denim miniskirt with plastic fried eggs decorating the hemline, quilted jacket decorated with bottle tops, plug-socket drop earrings, and bodices made out of safety pins. He was dubbed the Jean-Paul Gaultier of Italian fashion but their styles are different; while Gaultier experiments with different fabrics and shapes, Moschino used basic forms and traditional methods. What makes his rise to prominence in Fashion interesting is his apparent disregard for it. He spoofed high fashion lines through his clothes. For example, "Expensive Jacket" was embroidered in gold across the back of a cashmere jacket, and "Bull Chic" on a matador-styled outfit. He also mocked the fashion classics such as the Chanel jacket with garish trimmings and details. Ironically, many rushed to wear his clothes, thus becoming successful and famous in the industry he satirized.

On the other hand, it's possible that, quite the opposite, IT IS JUST IRONY. Let's not forget that Moschino was made rich on the back of fashion. Let's not forget either that disturbing or even counter-productive advertising (Shockvertising) is a very effective way of selling clothing. After all, United Colours of Benetton is famous for it and Sisley is rather prone to using it too. If Jean Paul Gaultier made him name as an 'enfant terrible', it was not by sitting around, calmly accepting fashion. It was by getting up, wanting to change it and, yes, maybe throwing in a few inflammatory and paradoxical phrases on the subject of fashion now and then.

If Moschino campaigned to "Stop the Fashion System." Vivienne Westwood promoted Punk, essentially anti-fashion. How strange that these should both become recognised and beloved brands!


"A style or movement characterized by the adoption of aggressively unconventional and often bizarre or shocking clothing, hairstyles, makeup, etc., and the defiance of social norms of behaviour, usually associated with punk rock musicians and fans."
"Conventional usage in dress, manners, etc., especially of polite society, or conformity to it: the dictates of fashion; to be out of fashion."

PARADOX? You'd think so... What if Fashion adopts that which seeks to destroy it as a means of neutralising it, and any danger it may cause the system? If that be the case, I must apologise to Punk because Fashion would then have won one over it. Punk has been assimilated and turned into another branch of high end and high street fashion. Trying to destroy fashion has been turned into a part of fashion... and if any more proof of this is needed, take the way that at the London 2012 Olympics closing ceremony, a tribute to British Fashion involving Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell was paired with David Bowie's song 'Fashion', which is far from reverential on the subject of 'La Mode'. Take a listen if you don't remember.

"It's loud and tasteless
And I've heard it before."

(Or was it the other way around? Did Punk win by forcing its way into the mainstream and thus changing it? Ideas, anyone?)
Oh, and I know there are many other areas of this subject which I could have explored and didn't when constructing a conclusive argument. However, there are too many of them right now. I might re-do this argument from a different perspective on a future post.

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Walk like a pink (not quite) Egyptian


A couple of months ago, I realised that my childhood home, my real enduring home where I found myself from my earliest years to the present, where I've been through joy and strife and every shade of emotion in between, was not the one I thought it was. To clarify: the first home I lived in, or rather I remember living in, was somewhere called Tixover Grange in the middle of nowhere in Rutland. It was a sprawling spider of a house with tentacles going off in random directions, hailing playrooms, conservatories and a mess of a dining room, study and garage. It was there I lived from the age of three for the next eight years of my life. In a narrow meaning of the term, for the whole of my childhood. Of course, being a very literary person, maybe I leant (and continue to lend) this more value than it's worth... in books, childhood homes seem to affect the person people become to such a great extent. For example, Jane Eyre spends her childhood in Gateshead Hall and Lowood School. If this dismal beginning could be enough to sanction the emergence of a bitter and even cruel character in any child, Jane disproves this. Instead, her beginnings taught her resilience, modesty and honesty, honour in the face of everything that is thrown at her. If this is perhaps more due to the people she encounters, the value of place can't be wholly ignored. Other examples from literature could include Pip in 'Great Expectations',  and Scarlet in 'Gone with the Wind'.

I am seventeen and, looking back now, I see that my childhood home is not wholly Tixover Grange with its nooks and crannies and apple trees that have never given fruit and that I must have climbed a thousand times. It is actually somewhere across the English channel in a village not far from Paris... once my grandparents' house, now my grandmother's, somewhere I have spent some of every Holiday since I was an squealing red gargoyle of a baby. I've jumped from the bathroom windows here, broken more things than I can remember, stained the sofa, spilled 'J'adore' Dior over a rug, grown into clothes and out of clothes, drawn on the walls and sat on the roof. I even have my own room of a very generous size that I shall soon paint Olive and Gold and cover with posters of Theda Bara and Musidora. If anywhere is my childhood home, this is. Maybe that's one of the reasons I love my French half as much as I do.

That was my supposedly deep thought for the day... onto what I'm wearing.

Pink and turquoise-y blue are not well-known as a good combination. It is a combination which has been known to cause a vicious and often irreversible overdose of sweet/cute/ostentation or it clashes dreadfully. Ignoring all that, I wore pink (three different shades of it - Oh, the horror!) and turquoise together today. Well, it wasn't exactly a crime against good taste. Personally, I thought it rather worked, especially with the whole Egyptian vibe I sort of had bubbling under the surface. If you disagree, you can ruddy well beat it express your opinion honestly and I will make a voodoo doll of the perpetrator and stab it with pins acknowledge that we all have the right to pull a face when we see three different shades of pink.

What exactly am I wearing?

A)Top depicting pictures of birds and cherry blossom - Oasis.

B)Colour Block Pink Maxi-skirt - Ted Baker.

C)Necklace Collar thing - Noa Noa.

D)Two bangles, one dark blue, one turquoise.

E) No Shoes... on which note:

Taking the hypothetical situation that money was no issue, which pair of shoes from the selection shown below would you suggest to go with this outfit? Tempted by blue or pink? Or a lil' bit o' gold? Kirkwood or Louboutin?

Or something completely different? Feel free to mention other footwear ideas.

1) Believing Red Shoes from Melissa


2) Christian Louboutin Colour-block Sandals


 3) Nicholas Kirkwood Print Platform Pumps


4) Vivienne Westwood Anglomania + Melissa Lady Dragon IX

I'm not unhappy. My face just naturally looks slightly cross/miserable.  Honest guv'nor!

5) Miu Miu Metallic Leather & Suede Peep-Toe Ankle Boots

Thank you for reading, or scanning if you prefer. Not to sound completely void of pride, but please follow and do comment. *Smiles maliciously*
My next post is going to be a retrospective of perfume bottles: namely Jean Paul Gaultier - Classique. You might be surprised by exactly how many different designs there have been.

Thursday, 8 August 2013

Getting my act together.

I was considering deleting this blog and starting anew, with all the complexities and early lack of readers that that entails, but A) I have decided I have just invested too much into this. B) I'm too lazy to go through the whole process again. C) What's the point when I can simply re-brand?

I have been going through an intellectual crisis (only a minor one, don't worry) and my mentality was in the wrong place... somewhere in 17th century Scotland where I could live a happy hermit.

In the mean time, since abandoning this blog to the mercy of the wild beasts, I have cut my hair real short, got a perm and got a fringe. Amusing anecdote about the fringe: I didn't want it.  You see, I went to the hairdressers to get a trim and a perm and, before I could say anything and for no reason whatsoever, the hairdresser had started hacking a fringe into my hair. Not a cool fringe like Edna E. Mode or Cleopatra or Jane Birkin, a great big whopping jagged side fringe. When I called my friend Luna to sort it out and sent her a photo to show the extent of the damage, her initial reaction was: 'It looks like someone just chopped a chunk out at random'. Here is the picture of how it looked when the hairdresser first got her hands on it and, I am ashamed to say, I cried.

Oh yes. It was that bad since, as you can see, I don't even want to be associated with it. Luckily, my friend Luna sorted it out and it looks great! Big sigh of relief.

In other news, I had a brief work experience or internship if you prefer with the Fashion Desk of the Daily Telegraph, writing an article on the opening of a new Laura Ashley Hotel, doing the Style Agenda, finding ten pairs of awesome shoes under £100 and developing an irrational hatred of Diane Kruger - you would too if you had to find out what she's wearing in like a million photos of her, her and only her. It's not that she's awful, it's that when you're spending five hours looking at someone's personal style, Daphne Guinness or Marion Cotillard would have suited me far better.

So, what will you be getting out of me if you continue your loyalty to this blog?

You can expect:

More Vintage Fashion Shots

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Personal Style

Runway Analysis

Introduction to Style Icons

Designer Retrospectives
Haute Couture

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Fashion Photography

Fashion News

Beyoncé's new short crop rocks to high heaven!

That sounds worth it to me, n'est ce pas? Because, believe me, I am not a deep and feeling person who writes this only for myself expecting nobody to read it, because that would be pretentious and angst-y. So I hope it's worth it to you, because I do work relatively hard at this blog.

On a last note, before saying goodbye and reminding you to check back soon: an iconic photograph.

On this day in 1969, for the first time on a Beatles album, the front cover had neither the group’s name of the band nor the title of the album - simply the iconic photograph we have all come to know, taken on the zebra crossing near the entrance to the studios in London NW8.

Goodbye! Do comment, please follow and remember to check back soon...