Thursday, 29 November 2012

Classics Never Die

  Usually I am a total unadulterated impulse shopper with no regard for trends, what I am buying and especially how long it'll last in every sense of the word... I don't seem to care how long it will last or how long I will be wearing it for, I just grab and run. However, recently I have had a change of sartorial heart and seem to be considering things in terms of investment and have been lusting after (and purchasing) things that will be serving me longer than your average Primark jumper. I don't know whether it is getting older, or simply because at work I am constantly surrounded by things that have a three (or four!) figure price tag, and much of them fall into the 'Classic' or 'key piece' categories that many a fashion tome prattle on about and tell you that as long as you have each of them you will never have to buy another thing again. Now I have never discounted the power of the key piece, I just tend to dress like a crazy bag lady who left her sanity at the door, but I do like to pick up quality key pieces that I know will serve me well, and that I can throw on when I can't be bothered thinking about what to put on. 

  My most recent purchase (and a mere two days old) is the ever iconic Burberry trench coat, that I have wanted for many many years and was truly ecstatic to get my hands on. I don't know why this piece in particular has resonated with me so much, I think it is my desire to be a grown up and be regarded as stylish or chic... A look that I never seem to master often and that I would love to pull off, you see one of my true icons is Audrey Hepburn and I have forever admired her gamine air, and ability to make a simple breton tee and cropped trousers look like the coolest thing on the planet. I imagine her wrapping a trench around her and teaming it with capri trousers and ballet pumps and pulling off that very chic French simplicity so well. So I guess having my very own trench makes me feel a step closer to being as Audrey as I possibly can.
  Secondly, I have been on a quest to become more ladylike, and although I think me behaving more of a lady has a long way to go, I feel that aesthetically I am getting there. Don't get me wrong I am no aristocrat, but I am much more polished than I was a year or two ago. I seem to be slowly weening myself off my super comfy leggings! However, they do say old habits die hard... So I'm not quite Carine Roitfeld yet! But with every sensible purchase I feel like I am getting a step closer to the me I thrive for. I admit that my version of 'ladylike' is a little off kilter but that is what makes me, well me. So by mixing pieces that are truly chic with my vintage and my more eclectic pieces I create my own modern ladylike ideal. 

   There are a number of classic pieces that I feel should hang in every self respecting lady's wardrobe, and that should be invested in and I am going to list them... Feel free to comment and let me know if I've left any out that you feel I should have included... In no particular order...

1. At least one pair of well cut jeans. (J Brand, Ida, Citizens of Humanity, Acne)

2. A crisp, well cut white shirt. Mens styles look fabulous and chic too.

3. A pair of expensive, classic heels. 
(Prada, Rupert Sanderson, Choo, Louboutin)
They really are more comfortable.

4. A classic trench coat.

5. Black polo neck. (Uniqlo, Zara, John Smedley)

6. Good quality white tee. (T by Wang, American Vintage, Jil 
Sander) The quality does make a difference.

7. Ballet pumps. Just because. (French Sole, Repetto, Chanel, Office)

8. The fail safe dress. Preferably black. The one that always
makes you feel like the hottest girl in the room. Even on fat days.

9. Breton stripe tee. Classic and easy. (Zara, Petit Bateau, Gap, Cos)

10. The wild card. That random, off the cuff purchase that cost FAR 
too much. But you feel like the edgiest girl on the planet in it. 

Linda I love you!

   As you might have guessed I'm currently obsessing over the supers... The ones that became so famous in the nineties that they were known by their first names by pretty much the whole planet, even stamp collectors and train spotters that pretended not to care. One of my personal faves was always always Linda Evangelista, aaah Linda! The lady who exclaimed she wouldn't get out of bed for less than ten grand and whose hair (and eyebrow) colour changed more often than most folk change their knickers. When she cut off her hair it became her thing, and made those already sharp cheekbones look like they could cut glass. Along with Brooke Shields she made the power brow a 'thing' in the nineties and was never off Gianni Versace's catwalk... As well as popping up in a George Michael music video! She seems to be having a renaissance of late and her and her cheekbones have been cropping up all over the place. Plus she made is all drool with her courtroom ensembles in her recent child maintenance negotiations.
   Linda is proof that no matter what your age, you should always look fabulous. Now I do love the new crop of supers commanding the runways and ad campaigns, but Linda has always been one of the best. She is living proof that, in an industry that is often dictated by age, beauty and how rocking your body is age really doesn't matter if you are as fabulous, iconic and beautiful as she still is. I am loving that models of 'a certain age' are having a huge renaissance and proving that despite trends and the industry's insistence that you have to fit a certain mould dreamt up by casting directors, designers are ignoring this and picking fierce, stunning and powerful women from seasons past... They are showing that it isn't about age, but attitude, confidence and if you can still carry off their farms you will be booked whether you are 16 or 65, and I am impressed by this. Most days when I nip into the corner shop to pick up milk you can't move for publications slagging off famous folk if they have dared to put on a few pounds or they haven't got a face full of botox making them look fresher than your average ten year old, but the designers at the top of the game that dictate the trends and whose models make you feel like a beached whale if you aren't sample size are touting supers who are old enough to be the other girls' mothers and for this I salute them. Especially as in many other industries the minute you hot forty you are shoved in the cupboard to make room for some hot blond with prefer boobs, its nice to see the industry accused of being the most shallow and image obsessed ignoring the age issue.

If I had legs like Linda's I'd be getting them out 'til I'm 60! 

Go Linda!!!

images courtesy of i-D magazine. Photos by Daniele + Iango. Fashion by Patti Wilson. Concept by Luigi Murenu

Friday, 23 November 2012

Super Duper What a Trooper

  In the age of the Daphne's Miranda's and Lara's lets not forget the original super duper models. The women that made models household names and won them multi-million dollar cosmetics contracts... Without Kristen, Linda and co these girls would still be relegated to editorial shoots and Sports Illustrated calendars. With the likes of Gianni Versace helping to make them the most powerful bitches of the nineties and helping to ensure they didn't get out of bed for less than ten GGs these were the girls that RULED the world. With brands paying millions for catwalk exclusivity and private jets at their finger tips the phrase "supermodel" was coined for them.

  Kristen McMenamy is a personal fave of mine because she belonged to the waif like and gamine "heroin chic" camp inhabited by the likes of Kate Moss... She had the same ethereal quality and unkempt aesthetic that Moss did, and that Corrine Day championed. I love that at nearly fifty and with waist length white hair Kristen is still walking and working now... In demand of some of the biggest houses and publications. I love that she looks permanently haunted and detached from reality, I love that she isn't typically beautiful and wouldn't be caught dead on the Victorias Secret catwalk... It's the fact she is so NOT commercial yet so in demand all at the sane time. In recent images she has maintained a ghost-like presence with her anti-TOWIE alabaster skin and sinewy figure and ensuring that despite being so far removed from what is deemed 'on trend' in the modelling world she is still relevant and as fabulous as ever. She is almost the human embodiment of heroin chic and the juxtapose it represented in fashion at the time,  long live Queen Kristen!

May the old guard reign supreme!

images courtesy of i-D magazine. Photographs by Daniele + Iango. Fashion by Patti Wilson. Concept by Luigi Murenu.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

I say essential, you say frivolous...

The Haul...

Snoods, £9.99 each, H&M

Hand cream, l'Occitane, £18.50 (they do a baby
tube for £8 too)

Necklace, £12.99, H&M

  I am never one to do a haul post or any of that  but I do like to share my opinions on things I deem, errmmmm... a MUST purchase from time to time alongside my innermost fashion pervings. I do like to mis things up and keep y'all on your toes etc etc... So "to the point!" I hear you cry... Anyway the Mothersip did her monthly pilgrimage to see me on Saturday, and after we lunched liked ladies (I had a yummy burger and she laughed because I refused to eat the bun) I took her for the obligatory tea and cake. Over pecan pie and Vicky sponge she tossed 60 quid at me and told me to spend as I liked because she couldn't be arsed taking me shopping but promised a proper haul after Christmas. Bless her. After I walked her to her train I trotted off to spend my pennies and cheer myself up as I'm poor until payday and sadly retail therapy is always therapy to me... Something I recon the old Bank Manager wishes I'd swap for yoga or something much less costly and equally relaxing.

  So back to the penny bashing... I'd skipped into H&M the previous evening and seen a few "payday pervs" that I thought I could now get my grubby little mitts on.
I am obsessed with snoods and have added the lilac and peppermint to my collection, and have already spied two more from Topshop I feel I need! Uh oh! Anyway I loved these cute pastel ones and decided I needed both colours to clash with my obligatory dark autumnal palette. I love that they are twisted as opposed to a boring old tube snood shape and felt this was most definitely their USP! Yes I'm just making up random reasons to explain my frivolity...

  Next up is the 20% Shea Butter hand cream from L'Occitane... A friend tweeted a picture of the rose one and praised it muchly, so I thought I'd invest. I hate the whiff of rise and due to sadly being the sufferer of contact dermatitis AND eczema (both mild-ish) on my hands which is flared by perfumed things I opted for the Shea butter flavour/variety. So far it's been gorgeous and I've noticed a change already... Also I'm sadly a sucker for a fancy bit of packaging and the metal tube sold it me! Sorry I'm lame and have been known to buy about a million different things in supermarkets and cosmetics halls when I went in for one thing. So aside from the packaging, price doesn't deter me with hand creams because I have suffered with this for ages now and I am willing to pay whatever I have to in order to have hands free from flaky, dry and sore skin... I have tried quite a few and this one is floating my boat at the moment.

  Last but most definitely not least is my addiction to statement jewellery, mainly necklaces, collars and chokers. The newest addition to my groaning vanity table is this art deco-esque bejewelled little treasure. It cost more than I would usually ever spend on a high street bauble, especially in H&M which is usually super cheap for accessories but I couldn't say no to this. It packs such a punch I recon David Haye could get a little dizzy from it, and that is the statement I always intend to make with an accessory, especially if feeling tired/lazy/unhappy with my wardrobe and looking uncharacteristically minimal... I like pieces that can detract from the lack of effort I have put into my sartorial choices that morning. I saw quite a few other pieces while I was indulging so I think this necklace will have a few friend come this weekend after I get paid.

  For me accessories maketh the man, and the outfit! I am never shy of investing and that is why I think of them as essential to my wardrobe, they can make the plainest of tee shirts or white shirts go from blah to fabulous in an instant. They never fail to add edge and a bit of a twist to proceedings, and that is why I deem them as essential to my wardrobe as say, underwear or hosiery or the clothes themselves! On the other hand, they may well be a frivolity but we all need cheering up in the winter months...

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Rites of Fashion Passage

  There are some things that us fashion perverts dream of, and one of them is to step onto the threshold of some of the most iconic names in fashion and make a purchase. I have had a number of things on my "wish list" for many years that I have been listing after and plotting conspiratorially in order to own. I have spent many an hour perusing the online stores of coveted brands, dropping things into my shopping basket or wish list and knowing that they are mine for that short cluster of minutes. I sit there daydreaming idly pairing said items with outfits and other items of clothing that would highlight the beauty of the item on my imaginary pervert list.
  Recently, thanks to a very messy divorce involving parents who haven't spoken or set eyes on one another for years I was gifted with a handsome sum of money by my darling Mum with which I was to spend accordingly. I was very sensible and assigned most of it to paying of financial indiscretions and messes that I had gotten myself into. However a princely portion I had set to one side in order to acquire a few items on my imaginary list of things a girl should own before she dies. 
And acquire them I did. I rarely publish personal posts as I try to keep the blog professional and within my chosen subject matter, but occasionally I like to let my readers into a tiny pocket of my personal life and give them an insight into my innermost personal thinkings.

  So dear readers here are a few things I acquired on aforementioned list of FASHWAN PORN lusts for you to peruse...

Chanel Pumps

  For trillions of years I have dreamed of owning a pair of Chanel ballet flats, I have been an obsessive of all things aesthetically Parisian for a long time and the epitome of Parisian chic has to be the classic ballet flat from Chanel. There are a number of colours that I have been lusting after, and I originally intended to buy navy or beige but talked myself into navy for practicality reasons. After trying a couple of sizes it turned out they didn't have navy in my size. I have always wanted the beige because they are one of the most classic and iconic colour ways, out of impulse I took them as I knew if I had to wait I would end up spending the money stupidly on something else.
Back to the reasoning... As I have grown older I have become much more inspired by minimalism as well as maximalism and have become accustomed to appreciating not only the eclectic but the chic and polished. For me the Chanel ballet flat embodies and epitomises this particular aesthetic that I occasionally like to embrace and coat myself in. So for me, in terms of picking iconic things that I may not get the chance to buy for myself for a long time they were top of my list. 

Christian Louboutin Decolleté Pump

The iconic crimson sole...

   For many, many years now I have dreamt of the shoe with the crimson sole, I can't explain why but I have always adored the wares of this particular shoe smith, and getting my hands on a pair has been a dream, wish and aim ever since. I think it was the episode of Sex and the City when Miranda's waters broke all over Carrie's beautiful fringed violet sandals... seeing Carrie heartbroken over a shoe that wasn't a Manolo (and such an ugly/chic shoe too!) sealed it for me I think.  Any girls first pair of designer heels will always be the most important, especially if like me you are from humble beginnings and you aren't commanding a six figure salary so this kind of purchase isn't just a factor in your daily wardrobe. Also I think every girl should have at least one pair of Loubys in their life, be it classic or one of the outlandish fashion styles. They are edgy, random and almost always fashionable, as well as the instantly recognisable red sole they command attitude and will always add an edge to any outfit. Plus, you can't buy the feeling that someone running over squealing "Ohmygod are they Louboutins?! Is that THE red sole I can see?" at you in admiration. That cannot be bottled.  I can safely say my cheeks flushed as red as the soles when that happened.

Chanel Wallet/Cosmetic bag

The last items I shall mention kare the purse and the cosmetic bag that I picked up alongside my pumps... I got the purse in the same leather/hardware combination that I want the matching handbag in... Weird I know - hear me out - but I chose it as a little reminder what the money I am currently slipping into my savings is for... It's only a tenner here and twenty quid there but every pound counts and all that. I saw it as a little goal to work towards, and having the same purse gives m an incentive to work towards in my quest for the dream handbag. Plus I figure just shy of two grand (I can my mother screaming "HOW MUCH?!!" from here) is nowhere near the mammoth amount it costs for the Birking I was waxing lyrical about in the last post.
  Sadly I can't have the cosmetic bag in the same combination, however the eccentric in me likes that they don't match entirely especially as that would be a little bit weird and verging on the obsessive compulsive. I have wanted a beautiful place to store my ever changing/growing collection of cosmetics that I insist on carrying around with me in case I need a touch up for a long time, mainly because not is just nicer to have than an ever changing array of cheap versions that I swap more often than I do my shoes. The most significant reason I chose this piece was because it makes me feel like a proper grown up... I struggle to ever feel this way mostly because I don't really act like one and am far from where I thought I was supposed to be at this age. And my fancy leather home for my ever growing collection of matching Chanel make up products makes me feel one little step closer to being a proper grown up. I guess all of these little sartorial rites of passage do in one way or another.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

The Grand Master...

 Valentino with models. 2007. Lorenzo Agus

S/S 1969. Ruven Affenader 

Valentino with Natalia Vodianova 2012. Cathleen Naundorf. 

A/W 92/93 Haute Couture. Worn by Julia
Roberts to 2001 Academy Awards. 

A/W 02/03 worn by Anne Hathaway
2011 Academy Awards   

  I am muchly excited about heading to London on the 28th for a work thing, however I am most excited about using the trip as an excuse to hopefully find a couch to surf on (I am lucky to have many a friend in our lovely capital to call on) and get myself to Valentino: Master of Couture at Somerset House. The biographical film about his career in the secretive world of couture gave hime the esteemed title of The Last Emperor, however as far as I am concerned he is THE emperor. Now I am discounting the early greats of couture such as Cristobal Balenciaga, Monsieur Dior and Yves Saint Laurent but Valention and his work have had the most impact on me and my obsession with all things fashion related because his shows have been around in my existence. Don't get me wrong, I would love to be transported to decades past to feel the effects his contemporaries had on the world, but Valentino's legacy has been a part of my history. 
The world of haute couture, it's ateliers and the unsung heroes in the petites mains have never failed to intrigue me, and I have oft dreamt of being a society girl invited to the intensely private shows simply because I am from the right family, or because my mother has attended them for years, or because I am an heiress to a vast European fortune and my trust fund would be much appreciated in the back pockets of the houses showing. Oh to be present at one of these shows... And then at a press appointment that follows! You see Ready-to-Wear shows never fail to get my little heart beating every season, telling the world how she will be dressing for the upcoming season, but haute couture is my raison d'être so to speak... You see these shows are the designers' way of showcasing their very talents, their innermost creativity. It id the platform onto which they unleash their innermost thoughts and workings. These presentations are not there to set trends or to be commercial, but to showcase the talents of the centuries old ateliers. Not only this but in order to have a slice of the pie, one must be happy to part with tens or hundreds of thousands of pounds in order to don their wares. And of this world Valentino was King!
  Since the sixties he has known exactly why women want to wear, and he built a hugely successful empire on this, as well as a clientele filled with Princesses, Presidents wives and Hollywood royalty, so loyal that they went back season after season. Jackie Kennedy Onassis, Grace Kelly, Sophia Loren and Gwyneth Paltrow are just some of the women that have clamoured to be dressed by him. 
The exhibit boasts over 130 of his haute couture designs, and is split into a number of sections for you to immerse yourself in... There are photographs from his personal archive that have never before been aired giving you the chance to delve into the man himself and get a clearer understanding of his character. As well as this there is a catwalk for visitors to walk filled with his iconic designs and films helping to outline the process of the painstaking quest of producing a haute couture dress. For those uninitiated in this secretive and closed world it will be unmissable, just so you can begin to understand the most exclusive and elusive private members club in fashion. I am most excited about seeing the collection of iconic red dresses, that he became renowned for that closed each of his shows, and became a factor of his Ready to Wear collections too because they were as much Valentino as his iconic tan and gang of pet pugs. Here is to the last emperor and his legacy...

images courtesy of and

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Secrets and Lies

 Jimmy Choo... Vero, £475

For the more demure lady... Jimmy Choo... Aza, £335 

Céline Winter 2012

 ASOS Perry, £45

SJP... Icon, inspiration, white shoe queen!

  I have a guilty secret. It is dirty and I feel considerably ashamed that I am voicing it in such a public arena. So, here goes... I have a secret hankering for white stilettos. For many years I, along with many others, was repulsed by the shoe in question, horrified even. Mainly because they reminded me of the eighties and not even in a good way, they smacked of Madonna, finger gloves and shoulders so padded they could be picked up on a satellite from outer space. Oh and questionable women from a little county called Essex.
  Then along came Phoebe Philo and her indisputable way of making some of the most hideous items in fashion history covetable... and she has done this unbelievably well to the infamous white stiletto. Oh and there was Raf Simons and his habit of making this shoe oh so beautiful via the medium of his Jil Sander collections. I love that they use clunky vertiginous wedges and covetable collections to team them with as a ruse to entice you into the grubby word of alcopops and shiny white pointed shoe demons... Sadly I have fallen under the spell and am considering indulging my dirty little secret and making a -gasp- purchase! Don't hit me hipsters!!! I can feel you judging me... staring at me with horror and your utterly directional Balenciaga heels that are so fabulous they need their own Saatchi exhibition.
  The second "white shoe inspiration offender" is SJP or Carrie Bradshaw... Now I was of the "Carrie camp" when a Sex and the City obsessed youngster and still rewatch it via the medium of the DVD box set in order to relive the sartorial and sexual awakenings I experienced as a result. Carrie was and always will be my "fashion pervert icon" mainly because she taught me to embrace my eclecticism and simply add more crap to my crazy outfits than try and explain it away or get changed. So, back to my dirty little pleasure and the offending icon, Ms Bradshaw regularly dressed her feet in the offending shoe item and has also done this in real life as SJP not just as her most famous moniker. Ever since I saw her team them with vintage dresses, full skirts and various bits of designer clothing I knew one day I would have to own a pair and put my own weirdo spin on them, and my temptation has been burning harder than a Diptyque candle in a hipster's dining room.
   Now for the rules... If one is to coat their feet in shiny white pointy toed leather there are some rules you need to follow. Never EVER wear before Autumn, no matter how much you are tempted to. Autumnal hues and clashing textures will give the offending shoe an ironic look, and therefore make it less Essex slapper in Sugar Hut and more fashion editrix down at Soho House. So, back to the time of year.... your visible shoe/ankle will still be delicately tanned from your two week jaunt on some remote part of the Balaerics that is so fabulous the travel pages don't even know it exists yet... Pale + white stiletto = Sexy no no no!!! Now to the hemlines... this item should be worn with simple, streamlined tailoring à la Céline or Chloé or Helmut Lang or Margiela. They will look especially fabulous with anything directional/avant garde. If one must be daring or naughty and wear a skirt, midi length and full skirted a la Oscar de la Renta are best in my opinion as it takes away from any possible ick-factor and will help you to avoid the slapper factor that a mini skirt will most definitely cause.

Oh, and last but not least one must wear the offending footwear with attitude and a dash of "I just don't give a fuck..." Happy white stiletto loving!

images courtesy of...

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Mummy I want a Birkin...

When I was about 13 I saw a 'what's hot, what's not' column in a Sunday supplement, and in the HOT category was the Hermès Birkin handbag, I was obsessed. I asked for one for my upcoming birthday, the answer involved expletives... Mostly because back then the starting price was a measly three thousand quid compared to todays seven. Yes seven. And that my friends is for the 30cm which I sadly deem too small as due to the shape one can only squeeze a handful of possessions. Now if you have been a keen pins and needles reader you will know I like a tote/shopper size as I am a self confessed bag lady and like to tote around half my worldly goods on a daily basis. 

The French luxury good house designed the handbag for Jane Birkin in 1984 after chief executive Jean-Luis Dumas had shared a flight with the star in 1981 and her belongings spilled out of a straw bag, and she mentioned to Dumas that she needed a black leather piece for travelling. The style was based on an 1892 design, and if one is a conossieur of all things Hermès you will observe it is a similar, larger tote version of the earlier Kelly designed for Grace Kelly. 
Infamously difficult to get hold of, with waiting lists longer than the Great Wall of China the handbag has become the stuff of legend and is one of the most iconic things to come out of the last century. And yes, it has its own Wikipedia page. The handbags namesake has oft auctioned her own Birkins for charity and famously neglects to look after them like one should a bag costing the same as a small car. Exotic skin pieces command prices up to a hundred grand, an are so rare there are Fabergé eggs easier to get your little fingers on.

  For me the reasoning in my thirteen year strong passion for owning my very own Birkin lies in a number of factors, it is that the clueless folk with no penchant for fashion can even tell you what one is and who designs them... It is that they are so expensive, so aloof and mysterious that they are almost as rare as saffron, that they are a sign of wealth, fortune and those 'in the know' carried by women so fabulous they have a 'contact' an 'in' into the world of French hard-to-acquire luxury so deep seated in secrets and fashion folklore that only a chosen few are given the chance to purchase... Or the spending power. On top of that, it is the pristine orange box with the impel black logo of the hose stamped atop, and the heavy and beautiful carrier bag that you take your new purchase home in. For me, more than anything it is the design, the simplicity and minimal shape of the Birkin that sold it to me. It is what can simply be referred to as a 'classic.' The one item in your wardrobe that will always work hard, that will never date and can make even the most casual of outfits look polished, chic and well put together. It is the fact that the leather is thick and heavy, and reeks of high quality that will last you an unquestionable lifetime. I have always been a lover of totes, and the Birkin is just that. The ultimate tote. The Princess of totes if you will (not a Queen, the Birkin my dears will always be the younger more fabulous offspring) the one bag that will always outshine the others. Lastly because I cannot decide which colour I prefer, just that I know one day I will own at least one, and I will covet her and love her like one of my own. Sad I know, but I am fashion pervert you see, and the Birkin the ultimate in FASHWAN PORN! 

There has been much speculation, especially since the publishing of a certain 'How to Buy' guide, that acquiring a Birkin is nowhere near as difficult as the house will have you believe. I for one am not naive and know that it most probably takes a lot of cash splashing and a trusting saleswoman to sell you  a piece of fashion mystery, so steeped in intrigue I could probably solve the mystery of the pyramids before I devise a way of getting one if I ever acquire the pennies to do so. This secrecy, and secret code whispering is one of the biggest draws for me, and makes me want to own more than any other reasons. I just love a challenge, and the idea of having to beg, borrow, but or steal my way into getting something I adore makes me want it even more. Plus most things I am coveting recently happen to live in an orange box, and I for one want to live in a little orange box with them.

One day a Birkin will be mine.

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Do the double C

  I have a secret obsession, and it is to own a particular handbag... I have wanted a Chanel Timeless Classic for as long as I can remember. Not even seeing Z-List celebs and soap stars carrying the quilted beauty stops my lusting after the accessory in question. My desire for owning one of these babies never wavers and I have promised myself that my christmas gift in 2013 with will be one these, it will be hard because I will have to abscond from purchasing anything for most of the year in order to save up for it but I know that the felling of handing over my hard earned pounds and pennies that I have squirrelled away like acorns will be so satisfying that I think I will want to cuddle her everyday from here until I meet my maker. Damn it I want to be buried with her.

  In a weird, stalker-ish way I also already know what composition my purchase will be made up of... Lambskin. Gold hardware. So shiny and yellow that it'll glisten like the blond flowing locks of my idols Carrie Bradshaw, Kate Moss, Cara Delevigne and Marilyn Monroe. The lambskin is soft and quilted like a pillow. I want the smaller Jumbo size as I am a self confessed bag lady and need enough room to fit a number of essentials that I simply cannot be without for a whole day (purse, card holder, umbrella, cosmetic bag, iPhone, reading materials and a few miscellaneous bits of crap I can't seem to get through the day without and fish out like a little prize) therefore the handbag needs to be of sufficient size to hold these things.

  I another stalkerish turn of events I happen to already own the matching purse (in exact matching skin/hardware) choosing this particular matching mini me meant that it was almost like a deposit or promise assuring myself that my much lusted after quilted handbag-baby will be mine. I am unsure as to why I have decided to post about one of innermost hankerings, but sometimes I like to keep my posts personal (still fashion related) but I like to be able to give a little of myself so readers can get a little bit of an understanding as to who I am and what drives me and makes me tick. You may think it shallow and vapid that much of my musings are all fashion/clothing/accessory/photography etc etc based but these are the very subjects that drive me, when I talk of these things my heart beats a little faster and my cheeks flush like I have see a lover... However the things that fire my little heart are all fashion porn related and this is what makes me remember my heart will always lie within the realms of couture and expensive handbags. Shallow maybe, but still a passion nonetheless.

Hopefully this time next year I will be posting about an imminent Double C purchase, wish me luck in hoarding pennies for this venture...

Sometimes it's all in a bag

 Luggage Mini in cream python
 Luggage Phantom
 Cabas in whips multicolour
Trio bag

  I have a concerning obsession with handbags, particularly those of the designer variety... Heck, I can even pinpoint my obsession to those from the Parisian and New York regions which I know is rather demented but at least I am specific eh?! I do have the odd pervert affair with those of the Milanese variety, however these flings are fleeting. My current designer du jour is definitely Céline. Without a doubt. Phoebe Philo has cooked up a right old storm for Winter 2012 leather goods collection, and my filthy fashion perving has gone cray cray and resulted in me lusting a number of the leather hand instruments that the house has on offer. 

  Since the demise of the IT bag that was made a sensation by footballers wives, reality telly stars and another Parisian brand in question, Chloé who invented the infamous Paddington which involved a giant padlock and was seen in the crook of the arms of many an It girl, model and actress worth her weight in kale salads, handbags have developed a bit of a cult status and brands have been fighting to produce something that doesn't fall into the 'It' category but is deemed cool enough by fashion editors and consumers that women have no qualms about shelling out just over a grand for one, opt if fabulous enough up to the cost of a small car or house deposit.

  For me it takes a lot for a handbag to fall under my spell, it needs to be a little obscure enough for it not to be carried by every lady and her dog and but not so edgy that it looks like I'm carrying a work of sculpture that I've just nicked from the Tate. And that is where Céline comes in... Purveyor of luxury goods, and the stuff that fashion dreams are made of. The collection is not only draped all over the sinewy bodies of fashion editrixes and society bitches but splashed all over the pages of some of the powerful fashion glossies in the industry. If I could wear the whole lot head to the I would, it is so offing cool I would spend my days looking so chic I would have Karl Lagerfeld sobbing into his salad. To finish off such effortless ensembles the fashion house designs some of the most coveted and well carried handbags in the industry. Only those in the know and aware of how cool and iconic the brand is  would want to invest in such hawwwwt handbags... I for one am just a fashion pervert with a penchant for the fabulous and every single one of these fits the bill. Now I just need my numbers to come up on the Euromillions so I can get them all, and carry them all at the same time and look like a crazy old bag lady running away from the men in white coats... Aaahhhh the stuff of fashion pervert dreams

all images courtesy of www.Cé

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Skinted and fashionably minted...

 Now I know some folk might find this post a little random, considering much of my blogging is centred around the luxury and unattainable, the utter fantasy pieces that designer's dream up for you and I to perve at... However, I am of humble beginnings and sadly cannot afford to drape myself in haute couture and carry handbags the same price as a car. Well I could if I saved up for long enough...

 Anyway not long after I started pins and needles a dear old friend of mine (you know who you are Richard!) commented on how I always managed to stay abreast of fashion but on an often meagre budget, and suggested I show the reading folk a few of my finds and how you can look on top of it without a Harvey Nicks budget or a lottery win. I have included some of my most recent (and not so) purchases which I am most proud of.

So here are a few of my recent fancy finds for the not so affluent...

Boots, Zara (recent) £99.99

 First up are my humble Zara biker boots (still in stores, £99.99) I am one of those terribly unfashionable Ugg wearers and am planning on a mini pair in black for this winter, as they are like walking on clouds. However my suede cloud boots are no good in Manchester weather conditions, considering we are the wettest city in the land... So I have been on the lookout for a hard wearing pair to withstand the rain, and snow of recent years, and that I can rely on to last a year or three. I was going to be all grown up and invest in a Jimmy Choo pair, however I stumbled upon these little bad boys in my darling Zara. I love the hard, pinky studded exterior and the double buckle detail which are perfect for toughening up my little vintage dresses and suit my minimal Mondays too. Now some may be thinking "thought this post was about bargains" and I for one believe at less than a hundred quid they are a bargain. I have lost count the number of times I've worn them, and they are of such a high quality I know I will still be bashing them around for seasons to come.

Trousers, H&M (recent), £24.99

  Next up is one of my most recent purchases... I am not really a trouser girl because I have quite chunky thighs and am a big bottomed girl so tend to feel a bit self conscious in anything that highlights my Beyoncé-esque legs but I have been dreaming of a pair of Baroque inspired sparkly-esque cropped trousers. I had my heart set on a gold Topshop pair that looked like something Peince would love but alas, they had sold out of my size in one store and disappeared completely from another. Then to Zara, my failsafe shop of late, but their trousers are clearly aimed at tall skinny Eastern Europeans and had no joy again... Last but not least I popped into the world of Scandi joy that is H&M and fell in love... Not only were there lashings of gold, but an Art Deco style floral print AND my all time favourite hue of the year... NUDE!!!! I was shopping for a pair to service me at two events this weekend and these are just perfect. At £24.99 and with a cute slit up the back at the ankles and just the right amount of ankle flash I was sold. Plus I picked up an oversize grey knit for a Christening and I will be slipping on either an oversize boy tee or slinky blouse for drinks... Plus they look magical with the upcoming Zara shoes I am about to wax lyrical over.

Shoes, Zara (last season) £24.99

  My boyfriend treated me to these little Zara treats back in June, and at £24.99 they made my heart beat faster and look like they cost a whole lot more, they also came in  nude/black/orange and turquoise/aqua colour ways for you to collect. They are perfect for me being bright, high and generous in ankle support while I'm dancing the evening away. The most important part is the fact they are really comfortable and easy to wear, which for me is a major selling point. The second pair is also from my favourite Spanish brand, and at £49.99 I think they are brilliant, they are suede and have leather soles too... The best part of the shoe is the back stud detail on the back, and ankle support again which makes them easy to navigate a pavement and will look awesome with my fancy spangly pants, as well as skirts and dresses. My point with these two styles is that Zara footwear is, well pretty awesome. Not only can you often get a pair of heels for less than fifty quid most of the time, but they are always pretty edgy and exactly what you seem to be looking for at the time. Plus it doesn't hurt that they tend to knock of designer clothing accessories really well, on top of that due to Zara operating a vertical manufacture model the stock is much better quality than most high street product it is also more ethical than other stores too.

Jumper, Primark (recent) £12  £5

Jumper, Primark (recent) £14

  My next brag is knitwear, both styles come from the Irish bargain super store that is Primark, I buy a lot of my knitwear here as unlike most of what they offer the knitted stuff is actually surprisingly good quality. As long as you take the time to ssh it properly, or at a push dry clean knitwear will last whatever its price. The first piece is a personal favourite, I am currently obsessed with clashing neons and pat els and this acidic chartreuse piece caught my eye because of the holly design and the fact it is boxy and oversized, which in my book is a key selling point. It looks pretty good layered over tee shirts, shirts and if I fancy being risqué I just chuck it on over a bra.
My next bargain knit was this pastel number, I was lusting after a similar Zara piece that was £44.99 and pretty much exactly the same (save for being actual wool not a synth-mix like mine) but I saved myself thirty quid being savvy and popping in Primark. I love a cable knit and still haven't given up my fetish for all things ice cream coloured and this bad boy fit the bill. Plus it has elbow patches in the same colour and I do love a Grandad detail such as an elbow patch. Plus it looks just darling with my new disco trousers as one can see!

  Next up is this fetching (sadly faux leather) tote, I had just bought a navy crombie as my winter coat and wanted a contrasting colour bag to use for work... I am one of these silly bag ladies who carry their life around with them, and pack for every eventuality (you will find an umbrella, supplements, food, painkillers, camera, sunglasses, magazines, water bottles in there on any given day) so need a good sized shopper or tote and this little lady was perfect. At twelve quid (and coming in black too) I thought it was ideal, especially since I'm not too precious about handbags they tend to get a good bashing so I don't spend loads on them... also it's studded and I am currently obsessed with anything with a stud or lashings of metal work. So this bag was perfect... and it was cheaper than the Warehouse one I'd been eyeing up for a few weeks.

Lastly, is my accessory of the moment... Those of you who know me will know I am like a magpie about accessories. Frankly, I have a 'more is more' attitude to the baubles seen dangling off my outfits. I have been buying high street versions of brands such as Mawi, DanniJo and Tom Binns who all specialise in jewellery of the statement variety. I have found H&M to be the high street God of ripping off these brands, and along with Primark (you have to be selective), Freedom at Topshop and Zara most of my accessories come from here. My BFF Nicola gave me a gift card for the store and I went wild on getting some new accessories for my already bulging collection. In this haul I found this bow cuff and I have rarely had it off since. For the price I am muchly impressed and have got a lot of wear out of it. So, I highly recommend the Swedish store for costume jewellery, especially if you want to add an edgy finish to any outfit. 

So, there you have it! My way of being on trend on a budget... Proof you can be poor and fabulous...

*PS sorry about the less than impressive photos... I need a tripod/professional!

This post is dedicated to my dear friend, follower and the one person I can rely on to fight my corner... Richard Brunt. If it wasn't for his tough talking I may not have had the courage to start this blog.

Thursday, 25 October 2012

The merits of pink dungarees

Stella McCartney Falabella

Charlotte Olympia Anastasia

Now I am never really one to wax lyrical about something so, well ugly but I have decided that the fashion god known as Philip Lim has made the humble overall/dungaree/one piece so covetable and fashion perv worthy that I had to post about it. I have wanted these bad boys since I first clapped my peepers on them last month. I have had a secret love for this disgusting item of clothing since I saw my idol the one and only Alexa Chung manage to make the denim variety look oh so fabulous, especially when the boy commented that she looked stupid. I know an item is all the more covetable when my beloved man folk declares it is disgusting, as I for one only dress for myself (and occasionally other girls because knowing I have impressed a fellow boob owner makes me rather happy) and know I have made a proper effort if I have visually offended my boy and my BFF. On the topic of my BFF I know from experience that her and her man friend oft discuss my ridiculous get ups because I tend to shock and amuse them on a regular (used to be daily when we shared a home) basis with my outfits, and I know I have planned my ensemble perfectly if she comments in a piss taking way... I almost pride myself on it! And she would HATE this particular item and take pleasure in telling me so, and how ridiculous I look in said item, and that would further prove that the dungaree of pink variety is a successful purchase. Oh and I would look like a character out of Clueless, and this is a reason as good as any.

  Now back to the ensemble in question, I would team this mighty fabulous piece of pink buttery suede with the biker jacket that came a few models later in the show, just to make a filthy old fashion impact. I would have to pop a little white shirt underneath because I am sadly not of the flat chest like Ms Chung, and my bangers would not do unleashed sans top/blouse/shirt/whatever with this particular onesie. To accessorise the flamingo inspired two piece I would add the Charlotte Olympia Anastasia heel... I for one love to clash in order to offend members of the opposite sex so I would do the don't and wear them in red, as I believe the fashion gods say one should never mix pink and red. In terms of handbag, I am incapable of carrying anything smaller than a suitcase on a daily basis and would need something to fit all my worldly possessions (I hate to be unprepared and carry a magazine, cosmetic bag, two purses, umbrella, passport, various supplements and miscellaneous items I believe necessary) so I would carry a Stella McCartney Falabella. Although I am rather offended by the fact the baby Beatle charges upwards of 800 quid for non-leather goods they are well, fit! And the price doesn't deter me, plus it's leopard print and as I have a penchant for this animal based print it suits me just fine. 

So there you have it... The merits of pink dungarees.

This post is dedicated to the wonderful Fran. May I always horrify, amuse and delight you with my outfits for many more years to come.

images courtesy of &