Friday, May 29, 2009

Happy Friday

Go out and conquer the world this weekend.

Let us toast to animal pleasures, to escapism, to rain on the roof and instant coffee, to unemployment insurance and library cards, to absinthe and good-hearted landlords, to music and warm bodies and contraceptives... and to the "good life", whatever it is and wherever it happens to be.
- Hunter S. Thompson

They'll Be Ga Ga at the Go Go When They See Me in My Toga

Jessica Simpson. Her hair changes length, colour and style as frequently as her weight yo yos up and down. Love her or hate her, she is certainly blessed with gorgeous, luscious locks, and she is one lucky biarch to have her hair stylist as her best friend cum lap-dog for overseas trips. Can you imagine their conversations? Instead of offering to go for a cup of tea when you're feeling down on yourself, they bleach your hair for you! Having a hair stylist as your BFF sure would solve a lot of problems, such as what I'm confronting Saturday, in preparation for yet another black tie event - the 3rd this month.

Your Lips Are Venomous Poison

It's Friday morning. That means Goop lands in our inboxes, full of advice spoken to us in the soothing tones of the great sage of our time, Gwyneth Paltrow.

This week, she explores addiction - defined as “the state of being enslaved to a habit or practice or to something that is psychologically or physically habit-forming, to such an extent that its cessation causes severe trauma.” The views - ranging from Kabbalah (it's not a weakness - it means our soul is unquenched, and seeking something bigger than ourselves) to Deepak Chopra who I have always personally found a lot of solace in (there are 5 elements to addiction which interact uniquely, forming just a part of one's life journey) to pyschologist Cynthia Bourgeault (a lack in spiritual/energetic force at a moment in our life) to the rather abstract Zen interpretation, which suggests addiction relates to the self, however there is no self ... and you lost me.

I mentioned addiction in my Samson and Delilah post, and how sad the fall-out of addiction can be on the addicted, and the people who care about those with an addiction. For a traumatic segue into the world of addiction, try watching Requiem for a Dream. I never wanted to touch drugs again after watching that film (not that I was ever into drugs in the first place).

I am, however, addicted to coffee. I only have one cup per day, so it's not a bad addiction, but I certainly notice if I don't have a coffee. Another part of my coffee ritual is the banter with my barista, who has been serving me coffee since 2004. He gives me cake and hugs on my birthday, cake for my parents' birthdays, and he is obsessed with marrying me off in a dad-like manner (each morning he requests an update on my marital status). Any male that comes to the coffee shop with me is greeted with "are you good enough?" suspicion in the manner that only older male siblings and fathers can pull off. Suffice to say, I wish there were more men in the world like my barista.

Wow. Tangent. I am addicted to coffee. I am going to New York again in August. New York is full of coffee shops, very few of them good given a very high percentage of coffee shops in New York start with "Star" and end with "bucks". NYC Mugged is about to change my life (for 2 weeks in August). It has reviews of all the coffee shops in New York, and you can put them in order of number of stars, and it has maps of where to go for said star-rated coffee. I love the internet.

Check out the site, if only for the great pictures of coffee shops.

Beautiful Brisbane

Brisbane In May from Rhys Day on Vimeo.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Fringe Festival

I may have gotten rid of the fringe in my hair, but I sure haven't stopped being obsessed about fringing, generally. Right now, there is a lot of fringing being carted around - on handbags, boots, vests, the anklets of stilettos, and even on the edges of high-wristed, fingerless gloves at Mimco (which I am obsessed with - no pics of these yet).

This 70s throwback is a lot of fun, and I'm really enjoying the current mix we are seeing with different varieties of leather (suede, shrunk and your normal leather), as well as studs and beading for extra variety.

These are some of the bag options available at Mimco right now. (I'm cursing Oroton's website - they have a great-looking fringed handbag called the Lido, however no pics available. I assume they're worried the pictures will end up at a tannery in southern China).

Check out newly engaged Kylie Minogue's boots:

I have been eyeing off a most superb knock off of the Gucci's pictured of late. They have just been reduced from $350 to $150 and I'm tossing up whether to buy them. I keep wondering what I'll wear them with, or if they might just be a one-hit, one-season wonder. If they went below $100 I don't think I'd bat an eyelid purchasing them, and it would be some stark relief to wear something other than the gladiators I keep pairing with my black rats.

See them at Balmain recently also:


Keeping in mind I also got a pretty great copy of another pair of tassled Gucci boots when I was in New York recently (mine are the flat version).

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Kicking and Squealing Gucci Little Piggy

Last week I had a very bad cold. When you have a bad cold but get better, despite no longer looking like shit you still have a lingering cough and almost constant need to blow your nose. Right now, the world is currently in the midst of a swine flu pandemic, with recent cases in Australia including a 20 year old girl from my home turf of Paddington, and a bunch of holiday-makers now facing quarantine on their big cruise ship in Sydney. It's fairly isolated right now - I don't know anyone with it, no one I know knows anyone with it etc. You get the picture right? This is not a drama of Biblical proportions. You wouldn't think so, given the looks I get for blowing my nose when I'm on the bus, or coughing when I stand in a busy food court at lunch. Rabid, irrational fear does not begin to describe it. I am not a pig. I do not have the flu. I have the common freakin' cold people - there is a difference!

Speaking of tissues and blowing one's delicate little nose, Kleenex has launched its Silk Touch Tissue Tree installation at Circular Quay, Sydney (runs - hahahahaha - from 19 to 24 May), as part of a $6 million marketing push in Australia (lord knows why, considering Australians are among the biggest tissue users in the world). The tree is wrapped in hundreds of metres of silky materials - simulating the feeling of rubbing one of their new silk touch tissues across your nose. It's true. I have sampled many a tissue the last week or two, and given I think eucalyptus scented, 3-ply tissues are bullshit, I am a pretty big fan of the new silk touch tissue. Apparently the tree dispenses tissues to people who grab off them (if only that would happen with $100 notes).

And I just realised the 24th May has passed. I'm sorry folks. My assignment is ruining my punctuality!

Film Review: Samson and Delilah

Samson and Delilah - beyond the dust, flies, hopeless poverty and isolation - is a romance, with youthful optimism at its core.

Samson and Delilah live in a remote indigenous community - Samson with his brothers who tirelessly play the same songs over and over, studiously ignoring Samson's obvious (if not talentless) interest in music. Delilah lives with her ill grandmother, who paints traditional art-work for sale in Alice Springs by the white middle-man who also owns the local store that serves the community of what seems to be no more than 15 people. Delilah's self-contained independence captures Samson's interest, and it's not long before Samson, his foam mattress and clapped out old wheelchair appear in Delilah's world to the cackling glee of Delilah's grandmother. Things begin to unravel when Delilah is blamed by her aunts for the death of Delilah's grandmother, receiving a severe bashing which shocks Samson - even through the cloud of his constant petrol high. We as viewers know of Delilah's unreserved concern for her grandmother, however the injustice of the bashing is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the unfairness of the lives Samson and Delilah find themselves living. Fleeing to Alice Springs, things get much worse, until an accident, miracle survival and trip out of Alice provides the final moments of optimisim in the film.

For a white person comfortably sitting in a plush cinema in inner Brisbane, Samson and Delilah is confronting, uncomfortable viewing. We know from the Bringing Them Home reports that comparatively, Samson and Delilah's conditions aren't nearly as bad as those faced by other indigenous Australians in what we take for granted as a developed country. It is perhaps the off-handed manner in which Samson and Delilah accept their lives which is so discomfiting - this life of petrol-sniffing, poverty, fear in the eyes of white people when dealing with the obviously homeless and unclean Samson and Delilah is treated as normal by the lead characters. The chirpy country music that sets the backdrop for the film reminds us that these are humans living, breathing, appreciating music in the same way as you or I.

Director Warwick Thornton's treatment of the blossoming romance between Samson and Delilah is incredibly sweet, with the two young leads - both untrained actors - conveying the message of respect, concern and care of young love with a gentle humour that is truly touching. This feat is more amazing given the limited dialogue throughout the film. We understand Samson's reluctance to speak much later in the film, and again, it is another avoidable heartbreak of poverty that jolts the audience once more.

The tension of the silence and the vast landscape is broken in part by Gonzo, a homeless man Samson and Delilah camp with under a bridge in Alice Springs. Like all stories about addiction, however, the sadness is never far away. The final scenes provide a sense of optimism for the young lovers, however sadness - and a simmering outrage - permeate as you leave the cinema.

Margaret and David gave this film 5 stars, it won Camera d'Or at Cannes last week for Best First Feature, and David Stratton has gone so far as to say that if you care about your country, you will see this film. I wholeheartedly agree - while this film is difficult to watch, it is essential viewing for all Australians, if only to bring humanity and dignity to this rarely discussed issue of remote indigenous communities. I am irritated beyond belief that only one cinema in Brisbane is currently showing this film, however hopefully the win at Cannes will push the film into more cinemas in the coming weeks.

Compelling, must-see viewing. Five stars.

Sunday, May 24, 2009


The key message here is - accessorise like you're expecting a robber to drop by and steal everything of value in your jewellery box. Coco Chanel once said "look in the mirror before you leave the house, and remove one piece of jewellery and then you will know it's not too much". Ignore that advice this winter.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Girls Are Pretty and the Lights Are Bright

You really can't help but fall even harder for a city that designates an entire day of the year - 05/05/09 (naturally) - to Chanel No. 5. New York City designated May 5 2009 as Chanel No. 5 day, to celebrate not only the incredible longevity of Chanel's iconic and instantly recognisable fragrance, but also to celebrate the unveiling of its latest advertising campaign, featuring Audrey Tautou, current star of Coco Avant Chanel.

You can see the new campaign here.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Happy Weekend

Two of my good friends are marrying each other this weekend. Here's hoping the weather holds out. Tres romantique.

When Crazy Hair Happens to Children

I'm guessing that's bleach in monsieur Kingston's hair...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Devil Speaks

Watch CBS Videos Online

Called the doctor and the doctor said

I have a horrible cold. I'm sure it's not the flu, but when you feel horrible, who cares about the diagnosis? Prognosis is perhaps a different story entirely. All I care about are all of the comfort items I wish I had right now:

1. My mama

2. A gardenia-scented candle from Glass House Fragrances - they make seriously the most gorgeous candles, and the 3-wick candles are scented just strongly enough to drive the smell of illness out of my room, but not too strongly as to suffocate my already badly clogged nose.

3. Someone to help me wash my hair and do stupid things with the shampoo froth to make me laugh.

4. A cup of lemon & ginger tea. I only have peppermint and chamomile and they are just all wrong.

5. My two imaginary pug dogs.

6. Soup that someone other than myself has made. It always tastes better that way.

Monday, May 18, 2009

I Know You Know, Everyone Knows

Coco Avant Chanel has been showing in French cinemas since late April, and it is gradually making its away across Europe and the rest of world at cheese fondue speed. No matter. The joy will not only be in watching the film when it finally arrives in Australia on 25 June, but also in watching the Chanel creations trotted out at each film premiere by the high priestess of cheekbones, Audrey Tautou.

As you are no doubt well aware, the film charts the transformation of orphan Gabrielle Chanel into one of the world's most highly-acclaimed and well known fashion designers - Coco Chanel - and her eponymous couture label. As Audrey says of her character, "Any woman who wants to invent a destiny for herself can identify with the early years of Coco Chanel, a young uneducated woman who dreams of entering the world while exacerbating her differences and ignoring everything of the extraordinary destiny awaiting her".

As lovely as her sentiments of the film, Audrey has also appeared in some gorgeous outfits to the various premieres of the film across Europe:

See the trailer (in French)... Wheee!

Also see below for Karl Lagerfield's black & white silent film teaser (this is an extract - his version went for 10 minutes). I love it - you don't need sound to know that there's plenty of air-kissing, "hello darling" and glasses clinking.

Coco Avant Chanel is yet another film that makes smoking sexy (ads for the film had to be re-shot or risk being banned in France, due to laws preventing anything advertising smoking).

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Pixie Lott - Mama Do

My initial thoughts:
1. Life is evidently one big pillow fight.
2. Locker rooms are fun.
3. Black sequined high-waisted pants as outer-wear are inspired. And I want a pair.
4. The dance-off will never die. It's Like That.
5. Blonde hair and false eyelashes is fun.
6. If I keep fooling around on the internet, I will never get my assignment done.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Chanel Cruise Collection 2010: Venice Boardwalk

Did I mention I was hoping the whole pantsless trend would catch on?

Uncle Karl kept the fashionistas waiting 2 hours for the sun to move to the correct position in the sky before launching his sunset cruise collection, which drew heavily on 1930s Venetian high society. Models strutted their stuff in Marchesa Casati-inspired red, blonde and black wigs and make-up. The whole look was very rich, skinny bitch luxe renaissance resort decadence and I loved it. What recession?

The heavy accessories were stunning, and if I could have stolen a couple of the wigs and necklaces (let alone the whole collection, obviously) I would have been a happy girl. The show started with some navy and cream stripes, gradually progressing to metallics for the evening (with a few tuelle capelets draped over the shoulders for god measure). Guests took home a Chanel beach towel.