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Archive for August, 2010

Mamma Mia!

I was intending to write about Italy, with particular attention to their winter collections, but after two weeks lazing in the middle of a Puglian olive grove, not a shop in sight, I have far more idea of the current trend in gelato flavours than shapes at D & G. Probably the ice cream was less predictable, (absolutely not the new, or old black) and it provided delicious meltingly guilty pleasure at fewer euros. For those more interested in food than fashion……………….the tutti fruiti and Ferrero Rocha recipes were a big, big hit.

So luckily post sun, sand and pasta I then spent five days in New York. Ah ha I thought,  death by shopping! Who needs Italian fashion. Now back in London I’m beginning to wonder who needs any fashion. Either it’s dull, aging classics, or it seems that in surprisingly few variations, a pair of shorts/skinny jeans, plus tee-shirt, cardigan and boots will form the wardrobe to take you everywhere. Chuck in a shirt or two and be ready to travel the world. Shame if you are not young, or skinny and toned, because you will be staying home.

New York is fortunately soooooooo much more than a fashion emporium as the following photos will show…………………………………..welcome to the non-stop theatre of life……..

A casual summer stroll in Soho? Well it was 85 degrees.

Times Sq. topless spangled patriotism + guitar.

Very, very scary in Washington Sq.

Weird at the Highline Park, meatpacking district.

Very hot day downtown.

Cute, well parked boxers in Soho!

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I freely admit to being a shoe junkie. It’s impossible to walk away from a desirable pair of shoes. If I had been Cinderella there is no way that I’d have left that ball minus one glass slipper. Pumpkin shmumpkin,  royalty is so overrated and who wants to be a princess anyway……………better to have gone back for that one-off, priceless glass shoe.

Fortunately in the real world there is a wealth of choice in footwear, because judging by my reaction to some of the styles on offer this autumn, my fetish could be seriously at risk. If the following selection were the only designs available I would prefer to go barefoot.

I know other women may vehemently disagree, but to my eye these styles are dead ugly, with the possible exception of the brown zip one. I cannot imagine running for a bus in any of the above, ( truthfully I find running for a bus hard to imagine at any time) but merely walking would be fraught with danger. Maybe they are shoes that are sold with an accompanying friend, one who wears flat shoes enabling her to provide a steadying hand or shoulder to support her tottering pal. A new kind of buy-one-get-one-free special offer.

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Rule Britania

The British have always been famed for their natural eccentricity. We tend to affectionately admire people who may appear to lead lives that are strange, somewhat bizarre,  or just slightly batty. In fact were it not for the fact that we paid for its upkeep, we would delight in the existence of a moat or the need for a duck house.

It’s definitely true that particularly in Fashion, we embrace the odd, and love a maverick.

Each generation seems to offer a new version of crazy. Zandra Rhodes was a forerunner, Vivienne Westward is still going strong, McQueen was a master, and Gareth Pugh is the latest catwalk eccentric. These are familiar names, but many unknown lesser mortals exist, dress and create in the same vein. It’s easy to say “oh, that looks ridiculous” but British eccentricity is truly marvelous, it inspires, it amuses and it makes us unique. Other nations have their own brand of eccentric, Japan being the most obvious crown contender, but somehow they just try too hard. Maybe it’s written in our DNA and steeped in our British history, from the inbred Royals and aristocrats to the Christmas panto dames, it can’t be seen, touched or smelt but there is something in our psyche that gives the British eccentric a long-established edge.

Hear Ye Hear Ye……………………….

Alexander McQueen.

Ziad Ghanem.

John Galliano, stylish eccentric.

American Marie Claire celebrates British style.

Classic Norman Parkinson.

Actress Sue Pollard.

Gareth Pugh.

Vogue shoot.

Luella shot by David Sims on the eccentric Agyness Deyn.

There ain’t nothing like a dame!

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