Thursday, April 29, 2010

american apparel's new look
Today I met up with a couple of acquaintances known within my circle of friends as 'The Geordie Sophies'. We met at a party back in December after myself and my friend Emily spied them at the bar and joked that they looked like us in an alternative universe. Funnily enough Sophie S recognised me from this blog and the four of us saw the rest of the night out with fantastic conversation punctuated with lots of 'oh, me too!' moments. The two of them had moved down from Newcastle, hence the Geordie label (a city I'm fond of as it's where I was born and home to my Father's 'odd side' of the family) and they were truly poor and probably very chilled to the bone living in a flat with a broken heater.

Times have thankfully changed now that they both have jobs; Sophie S got a position at American Apparel just before I left for the States. The subject of 'American Apparel's new look' was one subject of discussion as Sophie explained that the brand has banished all 80s lame from the stores (you may know said lame caused quite a stir-
a riot infact when it was all boxed off to Brick Lane for a big warehouse sale..) in favour of a more 90s preppy look. The preppy look itself isn't a particularly new thing but it's stronger concentration is and I'm all in favour of a much needed stock overhaul. I left The Sophies with American Apparel the new promised land of riding pants and staple high waist knickers and must confess this has kickstarted my renewed love for the brand.

Don't mistake this spring clean as a polishing up of their overtly sexy image though, 'they still love an opportunity to make anything out of mesh' Sophie laughed. I just cringe at the price points for these lovely new items. £42 for
chambray pocket shorts? Or £52 for simple button up shirts? I still scratch my head in wonderment; is this really the price of clothes that have been ethically produced or are they slapping on a heftier value? Either way I shall for now press my nose to the window, coo from afar and plot my next purchase.

fall christopher kane for the summer

With my dire 'just back from traveling' state of finances, spending has turned into a luxury. The fact that Summer seems to have arrived (or did the Californian desert confuse my internal thermostat?) helps as bringing a bottle of homemade sweet tea to a outdoor friend date over buying a coffee is perfectly appealing. So while my wish to leave it a couple of weeks before returning to work has left me much more relaxed I am somewhat poorer! But poor in a romantic way, you must understand. Magazines and spontaneous charity shop stops are however being sacrificed for now.

I met up with my dear friend Ellis yesterday (you may remember we went to Stockholm together) for a novel drink and as soon as the utterance 'Shall we pop to the charity shops?' escaped her lips I felt like an addict with blurred rationale. 'Yes, but Ellis don't let me buy anything. I mean it.' Her silence spoke a thousand words and half an hour later I left the place with two items and a guilty sense of satisfaction. She had suggested the first item to me (which I'm wearing in the photograph). One of our shared loves is the sheer black blouse, an item we have together discovered is very easy to find in second hand shops. My response to the embroidery however was a sort of "blah 'florals'" shrug until I considered it worn with a little leather skirt for a Christopher Kane spin. The advantage of my current nicely browned legs and an unusual outfit for warm summer evenings out won me over and after wearing it all day with my high waisted jeans I'm glad I did. Let the hunt for a black leather skirt worn for evening ciders on our boat commence. Here's to unsupportive friends and lapses in willpower!

Saturday, April 24, 2010


photograph by Patrice Jackson

I meant to mention.. the lovely Emily of After The Teacups posted this interview with me. it's from back in February but I'm afraid that I delayed her publishing due to faffing about with sending her photos. Some of you may remember Emily from a while back when she had her previous blog Jottings of a Fashionista. Thank you so much for such a nice little piece, Emily!

On a side note, the pictures that Patrice took over the Coachella weekend have been developed so this is another newbie. Patrice is probably of the only people that I would trust to take my photo while I brush my teeth and for it to come out anywhere near flattering! At the risk of being terribly self indulgent and photo heavy I'll get the rest up soon..

Friday, April 23, 2010


i'm back on hometurf.
bye bye to pancake breakfasts.
bye bye the lovely New York Times.
bye bye to five minutes of repeating 'Joanna, wake up.. Joanna, wake up' in addition to her alarm every morning.
bye bye to handwashing knickers.
bye bye to bleary eyed nighttime sessions of watching CNN in hushed Greyhound stations.
bye bye to wearing the same pair of cut off shorts every. single. day.
bye bye to couchsurfing friends made along the day.
bye bye to 20% tipping culture.
bye bye to map reading.
bye bye to piggly wiggly.
bye bye to denny's. we really, really loved you.
bye bye to singing superfast jellyfish in unison.

I guess this is where things go back to normal? Joanna and I shall return to our own cities and phone calls shall resume in place of 24/7 company. I'm currently running on adrenaline with jet lag and one hour of kip converging to create a feeling of almost drunk sleepy haze. Time to throw myself into my closet, running my fingers through the multiple morning dressing options I've been reunited with. And snooze.

I miss you already America. Hand on heart I really do. But I'd forgotten I owned these many shoes!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


These photographs crept into my consciousness via Ringo, have a banana! (I can always count on Siri to keep me updated with all things Chloe Sevigny when I'm otherwise engaged) and they reaffirm my belief that Sevigny holds the title of 'most successful haircut of the year.' Naturally it goes without saying she still holds the 'most badass person to grace the earth' position too.

photos by Tim Barber

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


We've reached our final destination of our USA trip. Which is a bittersweet fact in itself but the mood is so upbeat after a lovely few days at Coachella that it doesn't matter and dare I say it, we're feeling ready to leave. Much time was spent with Patrice over the past few days (four performances, four car journeys, two trips to Dennys, one viewing of Pretty in Pink and one trip to Sprinkles worth to be exact) who stole the show at Coachella with her pretty homemade feather headdress. It was actually the first time meeting her (though in that typical 21st century style of 'internet' friendship I've known her for a while through Abby.) and Joanna and I were most sad to have to say goodbye to her at the Greyhound station in Los Angeles yesterday. Back to Coachella; Phoenix, Gorillaz, Vampire Weekend were all amazing. The three of us played Thomas Mars VS Damon Albarn. Thomas was in the lead after the Phoenix performance (if you ever get the chance I insist you see them, their music is really best listened to live and you'll fall in love with Thomas on stage) until Damon sang his duet with Yukimi Nagano during the Gorillaz set and their chemistry caused the cutest most romantic goosebump inspiring moment. We three are unanimous that while Thomas is gorgeous and French and sensitive, Damon has that rougher persona that suggests he might conk somebody on the nose for you. Which I suppose is an attractive quality?
Joanna is sitting on the bed watching me type and tapping her fingers with impatience to go and explore San Francisco so I must wrap it up. Here are few of Patrice's pictures from the weekend. As a photographer she carried five cameras around without fail so many were taken and are yet to come. Eyjafjallajökul's insistence on messing us about means we are unsure whether our flight scheduled for Thursday will go ahead. This would have been fine by a us a few days ago but after making extensive to-do lists during our 10 hour Greyhound trip to San Francisco we're now more enthusiastic about the prospect of returning home.

PS, you won't be surprised to hear that Coachella was a feast for the eyes in terms of beautifully outfitted girls. If you ever lose your style mojo, you know where to go..

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

around the corner

dear diary,
we're in venice beach, it's sunny, there are palm trees, everyone has take away coffee cups, rayban wayfarers and attractive dogs.
we've only 8 days of our trip left.
excuse me while I weep into my sleeping bag.
the good news is coachella is just two days away.
charlotte gainsbourg should be able to soothe my current state of melancholy.

austin, texas

Saturday, April 10, 2010

ann margaret and travel updates

A little update from San Diego. Firstly it must be said that I'm missing blogging so very much, it's shameful to admit that feeling out of the loop saddens me but I'm also having so many adventures and crossing paths with so many lovely people which more than makes up for it.
Some of the adventures so far have involved a secret party with lots of Beirut style bands fiddling away in a disused railway tunnel in Atlanta, being invited by strangers on the street to parties that sound cool (until you get there and when faced with a room of silent 30 year olds come to realise that a good party never requires extra people being scouted on the street) and driving around Austin in the most beautiful little 1971 Volkswagen.

I can't gush enough about; if you're going traveling, you must use it. It reinstates trust in strangers that today seems so rare and the generosity of other people is crazy. The best experiences we've had have been in cities where we've been Couchsurfing (Philly, Brooklyn, Austin, I'm looking at you..) and it's as safe as anything else-always follow your instincts but we haven't encountered anybody who has had a bad experience.
Now, please lovely people be kind enough to update me on what I've been missing. Which underground It-girls are you pining over and crushing on, which new designers are blowing up a storm and which editorials have been inspiring you? Spill, spill, for I am like a dotty Grandmother who needs to be kept in the loop. Two weeks until I return back to normal blogging life.. A bittersweet thought.

I leave you with pictures of the very cool Ann Margaret; watch the video of her fighting off Elvis Presley in Viva Las Vegas and tell me it doesn't make you swoon.