Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Outfit: Summer Fringing and Fraying

Here we have one of my favourite 'get dressed and don't think about it' outfits from the past fortnight. Some Marques'Almeida-style frayed denim with good, airy armpit ventilation for the current muggy climes, and heaving stuff into the new flat. Fact fans: New flat not pictured. An outfit to wear day in, day out and to make your work colleagues think you had a wild sleepover somewhere, when in fact you just stayed in and watched The Culture Show.

Schadenfreude fans, I bought this Warehouse top two weeks ago and it is now on sale. Co-ord fans, it came with a matching frayed skirt. Sale fans, go forth.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

The Weekend List: No. 5

Hey! We made it through another week. All the way to the 25th Saturday of the year. Next week we'll be exactly half way through the 2014. Did you do all of those things you said you would do? No, me neither. But I've also managed to do lots of things I wouldn't have predicted when the year started. Like soberly headbanding and dancing the Led Zeppelin's Whole Lotta Love on a stage in front of family, friends and strangers as part of my involvement with Summer. Or walking up to a nice looking guy who had been making lots of eye contact with me in a bar and getting rejected but not minding much because actually having the courage to have say something was such a relief. I also got promoted and offered a role so completely out of my comfort zone that sometimes I just want to hide in the toilet at work but so far I haven't!!! *Pats self on back* On Thursday I went to a place by myself to watch England lose to Uruguay and I'm moving into my very own flat this weekend. I've also been better about meeting new people, spending less time safely enjoying my own company and overcoming that uncomfortable moment of walking into a bar alone to find somebody on the other side. In short, this is a nice half way to point to look behind and ahead and think "okay, we're doing alright..", whatever that means for you. Without further ado, this is the latest Weekend List:
Clockwise from top left: Garry Winogrand's portrait of women in Central Park,  Jeanette Winterson's Twitter profile picture, a plate of Norwegian snacks, Billy Liar image via Daniel Weir's Instagram, Duke Ellington's Money Jungle, 'Far From Home, Born To Roam' patch from Explorer's Press.


Jeanette Winterson's Twitter account is wonderful and good for simple and poetic observations about home-growing spinach, calling-out of Jeremy Clarkson and photographs of washed and jointed bunny rabbits.

"This dazzling America street photographer cut through the artifice of art and the portentousness of reportage to somehow, in a way rarely rivalled let alone equalled, snatch coruscating images of an ugly, lovely, hilarious raw reality out of the craziness of his times." A Garry Winogrand retrospective in pictures via The Guardian.

Berlin, Baugruppen and Mental Walls. Excellent and engaging post from Jones the Planner, unpicking Berlin's architectural monuments.


I've already talked about how excited I am for Sebastien Tellier's upcoming Brazilian concept album. He's curated this playlist for Mr Porter and guides us through his favourite tracks- from intros to the songs that influenced the new album to gems from Stevie Wonder.

Do your funky thing! 'Dancers wanted' host sporadic club nights in Manchester and teamed up with Ruf Tapes to produce this bloody brilliant get-up-and-dance soundcloud mix. Mmm ch mm ch.

I don't know much about Sun Ra. My knowledge spans about as far as his insane cosmic get-ups, all floor-length gowns and Cleopatra-esque headwear. This weekend I'll be listening to this Radio 4 documentary Travelling the Spaceways: The Cult of Sun Ra and learning more.

Duke Ellington's Money Jungle.


I try to avoid Buzzfeed these days but sometimes they throw a curveball, like with this comprehensive and uber-attractive tour of Norway's best snacks.

The elderflower cocktail. This, for me, was the taste of last summer. When we moved into our house in August, my flatmate Rose came armed with huge jars of homemade elderflower cordial and there was a period before I started my job when we spent lots of time in the garden, soaking up the novelty of a long lawn and that post-graduation buzz with a gin and elderflower mix in hand. Yesterday I returned home to find another batch on our kitchen table, which means  s u m m e r  is here. Happily, Nat Lucas shares Elderflower Collins and Martini recipes for Toast Travels.


I bought these 'Nice' socks from ASOS last week and have been handwashing them since to maximise my wearing allowance. Poking out of boots and worn with sliders, they're just the ticket.

Explorer's Press is a great Toronto-based store selling prints, patches, badges and stationary designed for 'explorers, adventurers, observers, winners and losers.' (Lots of their online stock is sold out but you can find most of it over at Beach London.)


Badass Lady Creatives. Does what it says on the tin.

5 Steps Insanely Productive Morning, written by Dale Partridge who is fascinating and terrifyingly evangelical in equal measures. His transparency about his monthly income makes an interesting read; each month he posts detailed monthly break-downs of his income. He is also so, so wrong when it comes to posts like this one on safety tips for women walking alone at night. "Wear a whistle." and "Wear running shoes. Bring an extra pair of shoes with you to work. There is nothing more vulnerable than having to run from an attacker in high heels." Hahahahaha. Oh, please.


This week I followed Mr Daniel Weir for buildings and good design, Auberge Chassignolles for apricot tarts and piglets and wild garlic and food in the French countryside. 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

The Weekend List: No 4. The audio edition

It's true that if you fixate on creating something new that is perfect and polished, you might never get started. I've been thinking about recording a podcast for a year now. I've taken sound recordings- this included a recent taxi ride with the Uber driver telling me about his upcoming fast for Ramadan and getting me to watch a shark video on YouTube- and fussed about interviewing friends. In the end it just took a really good margarita and the general malaise of the 'thinking, not doing' situation.

So here is my hatchet job. All recorded pretty much off the cuff with very little in the way of planning or quality control- which may explain why it begins with big promises and plods along somewhat. Either way, I thought I'd see if the Weekend List might work in an audio format. It's a work in progress, soundtracked by Jorge Santana, Tom Waits, Dee Edwards and Julia Child.

Happy Saturday, all!

Tracklist and links:
Love The Way by Jorge Santana
On The Swing Shift by Ned Doheny
Six by Dean Blunt
Link: Why more and more young women are choosing to live alone, Lizzie Porter.
Link: Have you ever lived alone? via Cup of Joe (aka over 300 comments from people sharing their stories)
Link: I want to be alone: the rise and rise of solo living via The Guardian.
Better Off Without a Wife by Tom Waits
Link: The French Chef with Julia Child: Croissants
Village Blues by John Coltrane
Why Can't There By Love by Dee Edwards

Saturday, June 07, 2014


Blue denim smock shirt, Topshop Boutique / Hologram sandals, Office / Yellow chunky sunglasses, Topshop / Hard Candy by Ned Doheny / Japanese tea cup, Trawden Pottery / Wood Wood silver purse / Orlando Gough Recipe Journal / Mini DIY collage kit by Anthony Zinonos/

It's a dreary Saturday and I've retreated to Soup Kitchen where I've eaten egg sandwiches and chatted to Nanon while we works in the open kitchen and read and window shopped. These lovely items are on my current wishlist, for myself and friend's upcoming birthdays. As with much of the week Ned Doheny's album Hard Candy has been on repeat- especially Swing Shift, which is all summer funky street-walkin swagger. There are a couple of new developments in my life- the rehearsals I've been attending for the last couple of months have now come to fruition and 'Summer.' is live and running at a warehouse in Salford. After a day of work it's wonderful to head over the River Irwell, eat with my new gang of friends and acquaintances and then head onto the stage to scare myself shitless and, with relief to quickly ease into it all each evening. Another development in the pipeline... after pondering over it for a long while I'm going to move into my own place, and live alone. More updates and meanderings on that soon, but for now I'm doing lots of housey window shopping, enjoying the freedom of buying just for myself and domestic items like pottery and cookbooks are taking on a new and holy sort of significance. "A Pottery Bowl of my Own," a wise woman once said (Virginia Woolf).

Friday, June 06, 2014

Outfit: The Good Time Gal Divorcee

Something I wore recently. My luminous green-yellow H&M jumper with my trusty tasselled trousers (which came with this matching palm and pineapple top, no less) and a pair of earrings I picked up in Glasgow.

I call this my 'good time gal divorcee' outfit. I don't know why the 'divorcee' style reference is one that I return to, but there's something about the tasselled trousers and large earrings that do it, something about the pairing with an angora jumper that make me think of a fabulous blonde with an infectious guttural laugh having a great time at a drinks party, being the right person to stand by if you want to share some jokes that are close-to-the-bone or share deep emotional chat and a cigarette with on the balcony. Me in an alternative universe, I suppose. I remember reading a really moving article just after Natasha Richardson died, written by one of her friends, and she was described in this way. Lychee cocktail-drinking and pool party-throwing, but always kind enough to ensure that when they met up she'd be wearing the bracelet her friend had bought her for a previous birthday. That bit really stuck with me; wearing the things your friends buy you, regardless of whether you like them, is one of the most selfless, important acts of friendship. I need to do it more. I'll have to dig that article out, I remember cutting it out a few years ago.