Monday, 31 January 2011

My 30 for 30 Selections

So I'm starting my 30 for 30 wardrobe remix today, and have only just finished my selections due to my ridiculous amount of laundry. I'm actually going to spend most of tomorrow finishing washing and ironing my clothes so I don't end up actually doing a 17 for 30 remix, as the rest is lost in the laundry bureaucracy of my house.

Also my camera batteries aren't charged and, as I said, a few bits are still soggy/in the wash so I thought "Hey! I can't be bothered photographing 30 items of clothing, so why don't I DRAW THEM INSTEAD?? GENIUS!"

An hour and a half and a very cramped hand later, here we are...

Pussy-bow Blouse - Peacocks
Cotton Top - Asda
Cape Blouse - Next
3 Basic Vests - Jack Wills
 Long Sleeved T - M&S
Tunic - Top Shop
Lace Top - Asda

LBD - Next
Maxi - Dorothy Perkins
Floral - New Look

Pleated - ???
Cotton Black - Dorothy Perkins
Jersey Black - M&S
Tulip - Oasis

Leggings - Dorothy Perkins
Skinny Jeans - Asda
Jodhpurs - Next
Bootcut Jeans - GAP

Jumper - M&S
Floral Cardigan - Florence and Fred
Long Jumper - Red Herring
Knitted Blazer - Laura Ashley
Leather Jacket - TK Maxx

Wedge Desert Boots - New Look
Suede Courts - New Look
Leather Boots - M&S
Trainers - Converse
Pumps - Dorothy Perkins

So that's it! That's what I'll be wearing for the next 30 days! I'll put photos up of myself for each day and then you can attempt to match what I'm wearing to my dubious illustrations.

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Fresh February

I'm currently in the process of what I call 'Sorting Out My Life'. I am reliably informed that this is commonly referred to as 'Growing Up' by people in some circles, but I will not subscribe to this nonsense.

In order to do this I am doing some boring money-ish things, but I'm also doing some exciting-ish things such as;

  1. Re-decorating my bedroom
  2. Getting rid of old stuff
  3. Not buying ridiculous disposable fashion
  4. Sorting out my bloody wardobe.
In order to do this I've decided to have a bit of a Fresh February and to help me along I am doing a couple of challenges I've found on other blogs.

For starters, I am doing Shoeperwoman's Shoeper Shoe Challenge. It starts on the 14th of February and lasts for one year. The idea is to count up all of your shoes and wear every single pair before the 14th of February 2012. Every. Single. Pair.

Oh my. The point it that if you haven't worn a pair after a year then you throw it away; use it or lose it!

I'm also going to blog along with Kendi as I do the 30 for 30 Challenge. She has done this several times as a way of Remixing her wardrobe and I think it's a brilliant idea! The rules are;
  1. Pick 30 items from your wardobe (not incl. accessories ie; gloves, scarves, necklaces, hats).
  2. Style them into 30 different outfits over 30 days.
  3. Do not shop for 30 days.


I'm so excited to give this a try. I recently organised all of my laundry and I had seven loads of washing. SEVEN. That is RIDICULOUS. I think that after 30 days of not wearing certain items I'll be able to make much more rational decisions regarding getting rid of old clothes ("If I've gone without it for 30 days and had forgotten it existed...."). So I'll be starting that on Tuesday the 1st of February and blogging my outfits. I'm hoping I'll be a little more imaginative with my styling as I'll have much fewer pieces to work with.

I've also noticed that Gemma of Big Girls Browse is having a Frugal February and not spending on non-essential items for a month. I think this is a good idea that I will try and stick to as much as possible (avoid the stationary... it's like crack to me), probably excluding my trip to Tuebingen to visit Miss H. I won't be buying clothes anyway for the 30 for 30 Challenge so hopefully it'll be easier, and much kinder on my pathetic bank account. She's now posted a few more detailed 'rules', click the button to see them!

So that's it for now, all that's left to do is do it, really. I'll be posting photos irritatingly often from now on, probably. Oh my.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

I'm Starting to Hate My Own Generation

I have just been watching Channel 4's latest in a long line of ridiculous programmes. It's called "The Joy of Teen Sex" and seems to have been commissioned entirely to please perverted old men. I say this because I know for a fact that no teenager will take it seriously because, being teenagers, they will think that they KNOW IT ALL. It contains the following:
  • Three 'experts'; A doctor who talks about STDs, a social worker who talks about personal problems and a blonde woman with bad roots and a victory roll whos entire roll seems to be pulling dildos out of a massive box and giggling whiles saying things like "Use lube. Lube makes everything more fun." Saucy look. "Trust me."
  • Actors acting out sex acts. In incredibly horrifying detail.
  • Vox pops from people describing their 'sexcapades', asking questions and discussing embarrassing problems.
  • A horrifying 18-year-old 'Teen journalist' called 'Billie'.

Seriously. I've spent the past half an hour furiously researching her, trying to establish how exactly she is a "teen journalist", like what credentials she has, and found that she has a MySpace, a Twitter, a Facebook and a Blog. She probably also has a Bebo but Google doesn't take that seriously. After a lot more effort I found out that she also writes for a horrifyingly over-trendy and hipster-ish magazine called Vice, of which I have seen one front cover and two pages of their website and it made me want to gouge my eyes out and set every vintage shit-stall on fire.

Examples of Vice Readers: Hipster Pricks

In the first episode she was looking into what people do to their genitals to make them appear nicer; namely Vajazzling. And we all know that Vajazzling is a tacky trend with a tackier name but it's each to their own, really. She went with this 17 year old who was getting a vajazzle and as she was getting the necessary bikini wax (she went for Hollywood, a bold choice) Billie was stood there with an expression that was simultaneously so gormless and appalled that I wanted to smash my television. She also watched a guy get his cock pierced which was, admittedly, horrifying.

It wasn't her expression that annoyed me the most, though (although it was pretty fucking annoying), it was the way that she was harping on in such a sanctomonious fashion, acting as though this girl might as well walk round with a "Free Sexual Favours" sign on, just for having a bikini wax and a bit of glitter dropped on her Vag.

This week Billie was researching glamour models and pole/lap dancers. She basically spoke down to every woman that she met, assuring them and the viewer that she would never do either job unless she had exhausted all other opportunities. In the same breath she said that she didn't think that Glamour Modelling was anything dirty or seedy (which I don't feel many people do any more, really) and that every man who had ever read Nuts or had a lap dance is a crazed pervert who constantly masturbates and wants to fuck every single pole dancer he gets near.

One girl that she was talking to was being very pragmatic as she talked about the "menu" of different dances they did at the club. She was studying for a Psychology degree, said that she loved dancing for the fitness benefits and the enjoyment she got from it, as well as the pay she recieved- up to £250 in one night. As she was discussing this, "Teen Journalist Billie" interrupted saying "But doesn't it feel dirty, knowing that you're dancing for a man who just wants to fuck you?". I doubt "Teen Journalist Billie" actually listened to the dancer's reasonable and well-considered response. She was probably too busy mentally congratulating herself for using the word 'Fuck' in an interview; that's just the sort of thing hard hitting "teen journalists" do, isn't it?

The only moment of satisfaction I got from watching any of "Teen Journalist Billie"'s segments was when she asked a glamour modelling agent if she could make it in the industry. Taking Billie's portfolio of moody, pouting shots he immediately told her no; she looked too fucking miserable.

"Teen Journalist Billie" is basically the epitome of every stereotype of teenagers that I have come to know and hate. Miserable, pouting and wearing too much eyeliner she strops around doing a job she isn't qualified for, sulking at people and sharing opinions that, if they are her own at all, are ill-thought out and not particularly considered. As far as I can tell all teenagers are currently suffering from the same disease; assuming that they know it all. I just hope they're embarrassed when, in two years' time, they realise that, actually, they know fuck all.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Goals/Hopes/Dreams 2011

1. Be healthier. Exercise more, eat better, take my diabetes seriously.

2. Get a job that I enjoy and that enables me to save up some money.

3. Travel. I want to swim in a clear blue ocean before 2012.

4. To only buy what is necessary or lasting. My bursting wardrobe of clothes I never wear is testament to my ridiculous habit of spending on disposable fashion. If I buy anything this year, it will be functional, beautiful and completely me. No compromises. I know my own style, I know what suits me, so why do I find myself still buying into trends?

5. Enjoy myself. I've spent so much of the past two years worrying about the future that I didn't give myself the opportunity to enjoy the present. This year I plan to have fun. I want to laugh, I want to dance, I want to read and I want to walk the dog. It's strange to think that the very first time the concept of "If it's making you miserable, stop doing it" entered my head was only six months ago. This year, I want to smile.

Monday, 24 January 2011

What Has Darcy Done?

Darcy is 1 year old in less than two weeks, which means I've had her for about 10 months. Before I got her I had no motivation, no interest and no enthusiasm for life.

Pigpen didn't want a dog. MR convinced him, saying "We'll just get a medium-sized dog..."

For most people, including Pigpen, "medium-sized" does not mean thirty kilos.

However, we were determined. We drove a five-hour round trip with Miss H in tow to visit the litter at seven weeks and this is what we found.

A crate of nine puppies; three blonde and five black. They all got let out of the crate and Miss H and I sat on the floor while they crawled all over us and licked and nipped us. It was more adorable than a Care Bear hug.

We quickly established that all the blonde ones were the most bitey, the boys were most attention seeking and the three little girls we had to choose from all had incredibly distinct personalities. One was incredibly shy, lurking under a bush away from the rest of the group. Miss H actually asked the breeders if she was the runt and he replied "No, you always get a thinker".

The other two were much less mellow; one spent the entire hour leaping on us and nipping our trousers whereas the last one was somewhere inbetween. She had spent a long time licking our faces and smiling at us, but she had also had a nice wander round, exploring the garden. She also had a little white flash on her chest.

She was gorgeous. We quickly decided she was ours.

We had to wait two weeks until we could pick her up, one week of which would be spent on holiday in Croatia. We collected the newly named Darcy at 9 weeks home and put her in her new crate to take home. She was as adorable and friendly as we had remembered.

Half an hour later, this was not the case.

She had already been sick twice, salivated endlessly all over her body and done the most horrifyingly liquid, yellow poo all over her new purple blanket. The gorgeous, cuddly bundle of fluff we had collected from the farm was now dripping, stinking and barking endlessly.

We got her home and settled into her new home, our conservatory (until she was toilet trained at least). She seemed happy, excited and generally delighted by all the attention we were giving her.

I quickly got into the rhythm of having a puppy. Early mornings and straight outside, getting her innoculated, playing with her and lots of cuddles. She grew quickly and, luckily, we didn't have any problems toilet training her or with her crying at night. She also became quite the cheeky character, always throwing herself into play-bows and wanting her tummy rubbed.

Over the past year we've grown together. Darcy is now nearly fully grown at twenty kilogrammes and loves having puppy fights and chases with other dogs. She has had several hair cuts, one perfect and two embarrassing and she has inspired a friend of mine to get their own 'Doodle. As for me, I have been through tumultuous medication changes, various abrupt changes in life direction and intensive therapy sessions; none so helpful as my daily walks with my faithful, furry companion.

Her favourite snacks are carrot sticks and her best friend is Louie. She makes me laugh every day. Her yawns sound like a really noisy zip and she monitors all of our behaviour constantly by following us around. I mean, there have been the occasional traumas but it's mostly been a joy being a dog owner for the first time.

A year since Darcy was born and I am a completely different person. I wake up every morning excited to see my puppy's stupid face and looking forward to our walk across the hills together. Therapy helped. My Family helped. Pills helped. But without Darcy none of it would have been possible.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Amazing Crafters - Jewellery

It might seem a little ridiculous to be posting this right after advertising my own crafty store but I've only just got out all the business cards I collected from the Arts Festival held in Edinburgh during August.

This seller would have literally had no stock left if my bank balance had been a bit more full! The most incredibly chunky, bright and delightfully eclectic charm bracelets and necklaces I've ever seen. Truly unique pieces.

They also offer a really interesting service called 'Revive Your Jewels', where they take your old pieces of jewelry and use them to create new charm bracelets and necklaces. I think this is an amazing idea if you have any random pieces that you've inherited or found in a charity shop or antiques market that you aren't sure how to wear or use.

My favourite bits on this stall were the jewellery made from Scrabble tiles and dominoes; as a domino enthusiast this genuinely made me so excited!

I've since had a nose around her site and found they also make t-shirts, bags, a whole variety of crafty bits and bobs. The lady behind it all also blogs quite often, updates about her life, crafting and ideas.

I also found her link to a post about her Edinburgh here and was reminded of how much I loved her area! It has been transformed from an emotionless, empty stall area to a pretty little haven full of quirky patterns and beautiful jewels. The third picture down made me so excited too; I had forgotten about the framed fabric letters/words. I think they're so incredibly simple but I can imagine that having one would create a really kitschy and quirky feel in a room or area. The post mentions that she takes commissions, so I think that'll be going on my birthday list...

Really affordable site (they're having a particularly fabulous sale at the moment) selling great chunky rings, cameo bangles and sterling silver pieces made from a combination of new and vintage charms. Pieces that vary from elegant and traditional cocktail pieces to more quirky bits and bobs

Gorgeous snapshot necklaces and unique, geometric brooches and earrings made from wood and various charity shop finds

Etsy Shop

I have opened an Etsy shop to get rid of some things I've made over the past couple of years.

There's a couple of cushions and canvases on there at the moment, things I actually made in university to personalise my bland box of a room in halls. It's all handmade and top quality. I'll put more up soon.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Temporary Tattoos

I loved temporary tattoos when I was little. I liked the ones you got free with magazines and those ones that you got in those plastic eggs from the turny clicky machines. I particularly remember the summer of 2000 being a particularly big time for them. In fact, I remember Miss H having a really hilarious tan because;

a) she had broken her left arm from doing three cartwheels in a row (show off) and had a cast to above the elbow,
b) she had a temporary tattoo on the top of her arm of Bart Simpson, which eventually came off, leaving a wonky, Bart Simpson shaped pale spot.

I'm older now and I still love tattoos. I love the rockabilly girls who have full sleeves, chests, legs, the lot. I worked with Miss D over Christmas and she's spent thousands on getting inked over the years and I think she looks incredible; unique, exotic and exciting.

I've sometimes thought about getting more tattoos (I currently have two small symbols on my arm and foot) but I don't want to make the committment. I don't regret the tattoos I currently have, nor do I agree with the 'Oooh you'll regret it when you're older' tribe, because I got them both because they were meaningful and marked a moment in my life. To be honest, when I'm older all the other people of my generation will be older too. If anything, when I'm fifty most people in their twenties will probably be completely clear skinned and piercing free, such will be their embarrassment at their parents' over-decorated limbs.
However, I'm still pretty conservative. I know that having tattoos can effect peoples' opinions of you, including people such as potential employers, and I'm rather traditional in thinking that an elegant ball gown loses some of it's sophistication if there's a sleeve of tattoos coming out from the spaghetti strap. For that reason, my tattoos are very small and easily covered.
There are still times, though, when I'd like to have some more. It's like sometimes I want to wear bright green eyeshadow, purple mascara and red lipstick. Fashion and make up are luxuries and therefore I think they should be fun. I've sometimes thought it would be quite cool to have a full sleeve of tattoos, or a big chest or back piece, but I know that would be something I would regret at some time in my life.

So when I saw this post I was so ridiculously excited. I instantly went to the site and saw there were a load of fantastic designs that were actually really quite reasonably priced; less than two pounds for an individual design and between five and seven quid for an A5 sheet with about six designs. If you consider it as a one-use only beauty item it's actually relatively reasonable.
The designs are far from the skate-boarding cartoon characters or flags of St George of my youth, instead varying from delicate, pretty designs to more traditional tattoo designs like skulls, anchors, roses etc.
I think these are definitely one of the nineties classics that I'll be reviving. Whether I just want to make an outfit complete or just terrify my mother, is definitely my new go-to site.