Tuesday, 31 August 2010

All In The Name of Research

The day started, as all days ideally should, with lunch in the sun. It was all so good, low carb, as all pre-shopping lunches are, and suitably spoilt by some high carb wine, not to mention the sticky toffee pudding (with two spoons natch).

Walking it off meant a mooch around the west end.

We undertook some scientific research *cough* in Whistles on Marylebone High Street. What follows are our current favourites. Alas I need to eat this month, so after fondling the fabrics I sought solace in H&M.

C'est la vie.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

A/W 2010 Look Book - Part Deux

Oh yes, there's more. What can I say? The upcoming season's shaping up to be a humdinger.

Sunday, 22 August 2010

A/W 2010 Look Book - Part Un

I like to think of it as an update on the tradition of scrap booking. But y'know, stylish.

Anyway, here's some of the looks I'll be working into my Autumn/Winter wardrobe this year.

Friday, 20 August 2010

La La Leopard Print

So, my beautiful Mulberry wallet was stolen a few weeks ago. I may have been on the wine. I may, just may, have been less than vigilant with my stuff.

Sigh. Lesson learnt. Especially having relinquished all hope that Mulberry will still stock something that is at least 6 season old.

Having mourned its passing, I have moved on to two new loves. One is courtesy of my gorgeous friends who felt my accessories pain and hit me up with a brand new season Mulberry coin purse.

Yeah, I'm spoilt.

And the second is courtesy of Spitalfield market.

La la leopard print indeed!

Sunday, 15 August 2010


For my recent birthday (let's not mention how old I was, I'm in denial), a favourite and long time friend of mine sent me the perfect gift. Movie night in a box. Bags of sweet and salted popcorn, crispy M&Ms, jelly beans and some gorgeous dark chocolate with ginger and orange, hid two DVDs; Rififi and Sweet Smell of Success.

My friend, let us call him L, has impeccable taste. Impeccable. His choices were two of his favourites and I'm touched that he wanted to share them with me. So, as I languished with the flu on Friday night (yes it's still ongoing, no I don't want to talk about it, it's too dull for words), I watched Rififi.

Rififi is a classic 1950's French film noir; hard boiled men who do what they must, passionate yet passive women, cigarette smoke curling in the air, basement night clubs and of course, a heist.

Set in Paris, Tony's just got out of a 5 year stretch in prison, with his health ailing, he returns to his old haunts and to reclaim his old girlfriend, Mado. His friends try to persuade him to do one last job with them.  Tony's not interested, he's interested in finding Mado, except she's now with another mobster. After a heated confrontation with Mado, Tony throws caution to the wind and joins his friends to plan one last heist; the ultimate heist - stealing F240 million of jewels from a jewellery shop. What could possibly go wrong?

I became immersed in a world of distressed dames who don't give a damn and men who used to be better, and know it.

Shot in black and white, the sparse script, which the actors almost literally spit out in each scene, is accented at all times by the lighting. It's stark and harsh, illuminating the character's faces to an almost ghoulish effect.

Tony le Stephanois

Style wise the film has it in spades, the strong, atmospheric cinematography imbibes the whole film with a sense of claustrophobia, especially in the 30 minute heist sequence. The lighting, and the direction pull you in until you're in Tony's gang, one of them, and praying as they are that they can pull it off.  You can't look away, you hold your breath every time they do, and all the while Tony and his friends don't utter a word. Not for 30 minutes. So simple, so effective, and a testament to the director, Jules Dassin's mastery of suspense.

A scene from the heist sequence

I can't tell you how it ends without ruining it,  except that it does so abruptly. When Tony's luck turns, and it does, you know that it has to end, and that it won't end well. But despite yourself, you hope for one more roll of the dice. When the word 'fin' appeared I felt as though I'd been slapped and like a true film-noir dame I enjoyed the sting. 

Sunday, 8 August 2010


... and not in a way I'd normally appreciate.

I'm no good at it. It's boring, repetitive and frankly a style vacum. You feel like shit, and believe me you look like shit. It's not a winner.

To deflect from my rather dishevelled and frankly snotty state. I give you these:

Alexander Wang S/S 2010 I believe, but don't quote me on it. I've lost the details. 

Ridiculous? Yes. Fan-fucking-tasic? Absolutely. 

If I had any energy to strut my stuff, and be able to strut it for more than ten yards without blowing my nose, or hacking away like a 90 year old with a 70 year, 30 a day Woodbine habit, it would be in these. Worn with the new length maxi tube skirt and simple tee, tons of bangles and of course, a pair of aviators to finish the look. Perfection. 

A girl can dream. 

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Fix Up, Look Sharp

Ah, the minefield that is work appropriate attire in the Summer. If you're a woman it's hard. True fact.

Male corporates, I've noticed, do not alter their clothing from one season to the next. It's suits come rain, shine, wind, or snow. If they're feeling particularly louche, they may go crazy with a light grey two piece and perhaps a cotton mix rather than wool. But that is literally it. Obviously those who move to short sleeved shirts, with or without a breast pocket (to keep their Bic), will not be dwelt upon here. I suggest you adopt a similar approach.

Us ladies on the other hand, corporate or otherwise, have a veritable minefield of summer wear to make our way across. For me it's all about keeping cool, keeping smart, and crucially, not letting a spike in the temperature lure me into revealing too much of myself. In every sense. Work wear is a kind of mask; a disguise, an armour, a literal and metaphorical layer that separates the professional from the personal.

This year I've made a conscious effort not to 'relax' and embrace the looser, softer, more casual cuts of Summer. Instead, I've gone to the other extreme. Sharp tailoring and a neutral palette. Dark greys, pin stripe, bright whites and blacks. Think pared down Ralph Lauren and Armani classics.

This dress from Oasis has been my secret weapon this season and a is great combination of femininity and toughness. Teasing but serious. Noteworthy and yet also anonymous.

It's knee length, very important not to get giddy in the heat and let hem lines go north. Plus knee length means you can wear beautiful stockings that finish the look.

Cap sleeve. Flattering. Especially when combined with the square-ish neck line. Enhances the line of the collar bone and offsets that itty bitty waist that has been nipped in by sleek tailoring around the mid-section.

All in all a dress that suggests it shows more than it does. Combined with a killer heel, and a knowing twinkle in the eye, it's killer.