15 June 2013
10 June 2013
Guys, men, boys, whatever, this is the time when you need to take a bit of advice from Aunty Jane. I know the weather is warming up and those pale hairy little pins of yours need an airing, but I implore you, DO NOT GO DOWN THE CHINO SHORT ROUTE.
Yes in theory they have a great preppy vibe and hit the right smart casual yet comfortable notes. But what they will not do is flatter, no matter what your shape. For example see above, a fine strapping young man, a model no less, does he look a bit Oh *disappointed face*? You betcha he does.
The reason why my fine fellows is proportion. They cut off mid thigh and cling with that weird turn uppy thing. The result is the perception of short legged chubbiness. Us ladies have had years of experience with proportion disasters, we can overcome most of these with heels, you can't. Well you can, but you'd look like Prince and we'd laugh. If you are going for shorts which end mid thigh, they need a tidgy bit of width at the hem, same if they end just above the knee. We won't discuss 3/4 length because you shouldn't, under ANY circumstances. If you are clinging onto your desire to wear a pair of chino shorts then size up for God's sake, and avoid beige unless you have a darker shade of skin.
Right that's you lot told, feel free to share and tell your mates.
29 May 2013
Back in the mid 1980's Liverpool was a grey and sad place. Ravaged by a chronic lack of post war investment and with Margaret Thatcher trying her best to bury us, there was little on the cultural landscape to inspire a fashion mad teenager like myself. Then on Friday nights The Tube came along. Not only was it one of the few places where we could see the bands we loved (unsurprisingly not many of them made it onto Top of the Pops) but more importantly it was where Paula Yates burst into my consciousness. Here was a woman who knew her music, looked amazing and was as cheeky as hell. I fell wholly and completely under her spell.
We all know the lurid details of the tragedy that became her life but I prefer not to dwell on those. Paula to me was colour and life, strength and beauty in the drab landscape that was my teenage years. Not usually recognised as a style icon, I am now on a one woman mission to put her on the style map where she belongs.
23 May 2013
23 April 2013
16 April 2013
I have followed Ragz Nordset's career ever since I photographed her here and discovered what a sublime voice she had. Well things are now moving for the Norwegian/Scouse chanteuse as she has a four track EP out now. Produced by Mario Leal it is designed as a story, each track being a different chapter.
Ragz originally came to Liverpool from Norway to study at LIPA and has been a stalwart of the city's acoustic scene ever since. No longer it seems, as she is moving soon to either Oslo or London, Liverpool's loss is most certainly their gain.
If you want some beautiful sounds in your life, click on the link below, I doubt you will be disappointed.
5 April 2013
I've never been on a pamper day, so when ExperienceDays.co.uk emailed me and asked me to review their pamper day for two at a Marriott Hotel of my choice, my thoughts were, why the hell not. At this time of year we could all do with a bit of sprucing up.
So yesterday, my friend and I went over to the Marriott Worsley Park in Manchester for a day of luxury and spoiling. It's a lovely country club style of hotel, set near a golf course and easy to get to on the motorway. After booking in at the spa, I had a mini manicure, which quite disappointingly was only a file and polish. However! as the photos below will attest, I routinely ignore my hands, and the beautician (is that what we call them) did a sterling job. I'm still admiring them today.
Next up was my pal for a mini facial. While she was gone I settled myself down in the comfy leather chaise and flicked through the latest glossies. When she finally came out of the treatment room you could tell she had been well looked after. She was gobsmacked (this doesn't happen often), a fantastic facial was the opinion.
We also had use of the hotel's pool (large, sunlit, very nice), gym facilities (extensive) and sauna (didn't try). My reservations about the day are small and concern value for money. two mini treatments between the two of us does not equate to a £75 in my book. Also another small thing would be to offer people refreshments when they arrive, we were offered water and nothing else. A cheap and easy way to add to the experience guys. Those reservations notwithstanding, it was a really nice experience and if you have the spare cash, go for it.
1 April 2013
I'm very much dreaming of warm summer days at the moment, when I can shed all these wintry layers and let my skin breath. In turn that makes me drool over these beauties, all designed to be worn dressed down and with a nice healthy tan (tan, not mahogany, OK?).
Marni mirrored leather pumps £370, Lanvin metallic leather lace up flats £400, Rag & Bone Newbury metallic leather ankle boots £470
Yes I know that was pretty much in dream territory but it does get more accessible from now on, promise.
Zara patent sandals with ankle strap £69.99, Boden T bar £69, Toast Saltwater sandal £49, Bertie Alinta court shoe £69, Perugia velvet/metallic gold shoes c.1925
Plumo gold Mary Janes £209
14 March 2013
Fancy being the face and boobs of lingerie brand Curvy Kate? Sick of seeing skinny models as the face of full figure brands? Think you could do it better? Head on down to Debenhams in Liverpool One this Saturday, 16th March then.
The Star in a Bra search encourages D cup plus women to enter the competition to win a 12 month international modelling contract with the brand, as well as a years supply of frillies (wondering how much a years supply of scanties really adds up to).
As well as the search for the brands new face and bod, the event will have instore competitions and free bra fittings. More interestingly, the search is supported by Body Gossip, who are UK based body confidence campaigners who have won multiple awards promoting a positive body image. They also run an education programme which has taught self esteem classes to more than 13,000 teenagers within Britain. As well as confidence building the programmes help students combat issues such as eating disorders, self harm and bullying. Any company which works alongside such a cracking organisation deserves all our support. Oh and there is £200 worth of lingerie up for grabs at the Liverpool event, all you have to do is tell the Body Gossip chaps why you love your body and you will entered into a prize draw.
The event is open between 10.00 and 6.00 and further information on both Curvy Kate and Body Gossip is available on their websites Curvy Kate and Body Gossip. Now get practising that pout and jiggle in the miirror ladies.
3 March 2013
After buying Vogue and the other glossies religiously since the mid eighties I've now totally given up on them. Why? Well because I am getting rather fed up of spending money for the sole purpose of being flogged a load of overpriced goods which I don't want. Page after page of glossy ads for the big fashion houses, minimal interesting and innovative articles (if any) and more selling in the editorials, well at least they are pretty.
There have been countless articles about the decline of the printed word, books (sad), newspapers (a bit sad) and magazines (haha). Blogs and the internet are getting blamed for this decline. Well in the case of magazines, they are dinosaurs and internet is their extinction event.
Yesterday I bought two magazines, one Oh Comely which I will come to in a bit and AnOther which is edited by Jefferson Hack. For the grand price of £6.95 I had to flick through 57 pages of adverts before I got to the first article. OK I thought, they've got them all out of the way to make way for lots of great articles. Nope, every other page is yet another ad. In balance it does contain some beautiful pictures in the fashion editorials, of which there is a lot. Then I looked closer, each outfit was for a designer, not a styling mishmash using these amazing clothes to show the unique creative vision of the stylist. More selling. There is a bit of text accompanying each fashion story, which was such pretentious twaddle I had to laugh out loud. Once again, for balance, there was one great piece on Edward James who was a fascinating character and an OK interview with Ai Weiwei. This was however, not worth £6.95 and it left me feeling empty and just a little bit depressed.
Back to the aforementioned Oh Comely, this magazine is a total delight. With minimum adverts it gets stuck right in. Interesting articles and examples of new writing as well as some fresh fashion, it is exactly what I want to spend my money on. Priced at £4 it is published every two months. This magazine is a real item of beauty, fabulous photography, great paper and even an item on how to make cheese, something I never thought I'd want to read about, let alone enjoy. I finished reading this magazine and felt uplifted and looking forward to the next issue in two long months time.
I think I'll email Jefferson Hack and suggest he changes the name of his publication to Disgusted.
24 February 2013
No this isn't a super late Valentine's post but a declaration of the new love of my life, the Whistles Mai Tai court shoe in navy suede. True at £125 they are a tad on the expensive side for me, and after trying them on it is unlikely I will cut a elegant swathe as I walk, more like a crippled chicken. Nonetheless, I have thought of nothing else since I clapped eyes on them. This means one of two things, either I buy them or I get a life. I take a size 6 if anyone is feeling generous.
23 February 2013
John Rocha is not a designer who is normally on my radar but this collection is perfect.
The other shows which made me squeal with delight were Margaret Howell (as always) Maria Grachvogel and Pringle of Scotland . As soon as Blogger/You Tube stops playing silly buggers I will get the vids up.
11 February 2013
I met Daniel Sandler last Thursday in Harvey Nicks Beauty Bazaar and from our conversation I can conclude that eradicating bad make-up is not the only thing on his agenda, but instead he seems intent on revolutionising the beauty industry.
When I first received the invite I was a tad wary, make-up and beauty is just not my thing. I am a (youthful) middleaged woman with a full time job, children and interests, quite frankly I don't have the time to be faffing in front of the mirror of a morning. However, I thought this is my angle, how can a top make up artist advise Ms Average like me? I needn't have worried, as soon as we started talking it was clear that I am the sort of woman that Daniel is targeting. Women who want quality quick solutions for their face.
Daniel explained that it was while he was doing the make up for celebrities and catwalk models where it was essential he work fast and make them look ethereally beautiful. Fail safe shortcuts were developed as part of his repetoire, then came the Damoscene moment. This was exactly what normal women need. A few choice items in their make up bags which could be smeared on with the fingers and off they can go, confident they are looking good.
According to Daniel, the three basic items a woman needs for everyday are concealer, bronzer (of which he is a great fan of it's versatilty) and either lipstick or mascara if that is where your preferences lie. Even I could do that.
It was Daniel's desire to improve make up that has brought him the accolade of the 'King of Blusher'. His renowned Watercolour Fluid Blusher came about through a dislike of powder blusher and the popular glowing look of a few years back. Cream blusher looks great but has a habit of melting off after ten minutes. Daniel experimented with mixing cream blusher, Benetint and Nars Multiple to create a long lasting natural looking glow. When developing his make up range he took his concoctions to the manufacturer and the result is Watercolour Fluid Blusher.
We also talked about buying beauty products. My feeling is that I tend to avoid it because the pushy hard sell from the usual counters is off putting. With many Sales Assistants working for the big brands having to meet ever increasing targets, it is us the customer who bear the brunt. I just want to buy a lippy and walk out, my peace and head intact. Daniel sells his range via the internet, QVC and select spas. He told me he often checks in his clients make up bags and suggests new ways for using existing make up they own, in order to get a fresh look. I really don't think this man could do a hard sell if his life depended on it. Instead he has a respect for his customer and a desire to improve their lives, a lesson many of the big companies should learn.
I should have also mentioned that he managed to convince me to walk away with an orange lipstick, a colour I've never considered before, let alone bought. It looks blinking lovely if I do say so myself.
For more information and to buy online check out his website Daniel Sandler.