Thursday, March 25, 2010

Photo Shop

Here's something new. Blake Lively has been photoshopped into a teen friendly G-rating rather than pushing up the cleavage, removing the clothes, and toning the stomach.

Computers are amazing.


I love this cover from Russh. Great colour - strangely, as a child I really wasn't in to the colour orange, but now it's all through my wardrobe. That, and yellow. Maybe because I continue to revel in my blonde hair. Best break-up activity ever, going blonde!

Ally... I have been meaning to tell you, but I have been too disappointed to really want to talk about it. The Plan A for getting to New York has not eventuated. The 'no' was difficult enough, the circumstances surrounding it worse - and nothing to do with me. Funding cuts, diversion of funding to other areas - called "priorities" - that I simply can't believe in, irrespective of my own disappointment. My workplace is less the great, inspiring place it once was and more matched to the stereotype.

But that's actually ok. I'm reassessing goals, thinking about what new direction I want to take things career-wise (again... I am 3 year attention span girl), but still of course finishing off my Masters. When I will get to New York again, I'm truly not sure. Hopefully the end of the year. If so, I'll be in the throes of beginning to scale the heights of my dawning 30s, reinventing myself again, still wondering what it's all about, and most importantly, still dreaming.

As my darling little sister said, this is not a full stop - just a comma ... Until I figure out what's going to fill the next paragraph.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Marc Jacobs Weighs In

Marc Jacobs' fall 2010 Paris runway show for Louis Vuitton was more of a who's who of current and ex (or at leasting fading into memory) models and celebrities, including 46-year-old Elle Macpherson (yay!), 26-year-old Lara Stone, 24-year-old Bar Refaeli, 21-year-old Coco Rocha, and Victoria's Secret stars Adriana Lima, 28 (who gave birth in November 2009!), and Alessandra Ambrosio, 28. In fashion terms, most of these ladies are pretty old. But Marc was making a statement. Along with the more grown-up and somewhat conservative vibe of the clothing, MJ sought to push for diversity in shape, age and profession to appeal to a broader market and perhaps, to appeal to common sense more generally.

In an interview with The Guardian he noted that:

"Designers are always talking about how they design for women, and then you look at our runways and there no girls over 20. This time, I set out to cast a variety of sexy women - younger, older, thin, voluptuous, from every ethnic background."

The show - titled And God Created Woman paid homage to the 1950s (hello, Mad Men?) and a more typical feminine shape, with curves spilling from neat A-line skirts, prim sleeved blouses and darling elbow-high kid gloves.

As I mentioned previously, we are seeing something of a backlash against the uber-skinny models that we have become accustomed to seeing in fashion bibles such as Vogue and on the catwalk. I think it's a good thing. Fashion is still calling for elegance, beauty, individual style and general togetherness, but that extra pressure/ideal of having visible ribs seems to be easing. Bring on Easter!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Mad Men's All-Pervasive Influence

The 1950s housewifery goodness encapsulated so poignantly by Mad Men is infiltrating all parts of life currently: bars are bedecked in retro-styled lounges and lampshades; baby names are returning to classic names in place of the push for the "different" (Epponeae-Rae) and, let's face it, downright bogan; Donald Draper was somehow Man of the Year despite his fictional shortcomings; women are apparently eschewing big corporate ladder-climbs for less hours and more time at home with the family; tailoring is making a comeback in a huge way, as is the skinn(ier) tie for men; men's hair is blessedly less sculpted into messy waves; elegance is back in general; and on and on. Also not immune, is the air hostess.

Air New Zealand has just released its manual of classic 1950s-inspired dos and don'ts to its crew of hosties. Amongst the important things for an air host/ess to keep in mind when performing his/her duties are the following:
* Never say "bun" (as in the bread, I'm sure their hair is firmly bunned up)
* Don't wear blue or pink eyeshadow
* Pluck your monobrow and trim your nasal hair
* Stand up straight
* Use deodorant
* No fringes that conceal eyebrows, obvious hair extensions, or towelling elastic bands.
* Avoid garlicky food.

Furthermore, wine must never be referred to as "red" or "white" (instead the grape variety must be named); napkins must be placed so the Air New Zealand logo faces the customer; and glasses must never be passed to a customer upside-down on a can of soft drink.

"We want you to be you, not someone else. Feel natural, so accentuate your good points and don't overdo what you don't need."

Here are some excerpts from the book:
"A little bit of sparkle is good, a lot is a distraction."

"You may find it helpful to wear a pedometer, which will measure how many steps you are taking each day and hence give you a measure of how active you are and can aim to be."

"Make the most of your features and be confident that you're looking your best."

"Cleansing each night is important to help prevent clogged pores and allow your skin to breathe."

"Chipped nail polish is unattractive."

"Fragrance and body sprays can be attractive when used in moderation."

"Sleep – in a peaceful environment – is a key factor in preventing puffy eyes and dull skin."

"While on duty regularly use mouth freshener, breath spray or mints to maintain fresh breath."

(Guidelines Air New Zealand says have now been removed)

"Adopt a concerned body posture, voice tone and facial expression."

Koreans: Expect good manners and patience from crew.

Japanese: Expect reading material, water with meal. "Do not be surprised if you ask a Japanese female a question and a male customer answers on her behalf."

Chinese: Mainland Chinese aren't fussy. Hong Kong Chinese are extremely demanding.

Tongans: There is "no need to shout at customer" as "they tend to be a softly-spoken, reserved people". Watch out though: "As alcohol is free on board a lot will be trying to drink the bar dry." Also "many young Tongan males look older than their actual age; if unsure ask for ID. This will not offend them."

Samoans: Coming from a tropical climate, they greatly appreciate rugs.

Did someone say faux pas?

Pucker Up for Paris' Pugs

The French Grazia team pulled an adorable marketing ploy on the streets of Paris during the recent Paris Fashion Week, with models trotting around with inflatable pugs and non-floating mag in tow.

This seems like the perfect pet, really. No guilt if you drink all Friday night and don't return home until 9am Saturday - way past puppy supper time.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Black or Grey

Wet weather. *sigh*

Sex and the City 2

Is coming out soon. I am in two minds about it: one, I'm sure the film is going to be weird and totally removed from the lives of the girls when they were singletons making it in NYC. I'm not sure that the people who signed up to watch the TV series of SATC, which had a very clear mandate I thought, were necessarily looking for a resolution or the answers to those particular girls' stories... Sometimes, stories should just end without knowing the absolute ending, and just serve the purpose they were originally intended for. All the flak the writers/producers received for trying to marry everyone off by the final episode would have justifiably ended things there, yet I suppose the $$ is far too tempting. Understandable of course. In any event, I'll still see it - but only if I get free tickets which are already arranged through my old job (yes! weird networking event for a law firm, but also makes sense from a women's networking point of view - except you sit in relative silence for 2 hours...!); two, I love the onset of anything SATC-related simply because you know SJP will be wearing something awesome. And inspiring... I mean this woman is in her 40s now right? She is more smokin' hot than most 20 yr olds!

Here she is in Marchesa.

An Australian in Korea

And soon there will be another Australian in ... Hong Kong! Not quite as pretty as Abby Kershaw, but whatevs. Can't wait!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Happy Friday: Outta Here/Rescue Effort

As some of you may know, the part of the world I currently inhabit has been rather inundated with rain of late. Call it climate change, call it mother nature being a bitch - there are some messes to clean up. Being civic minded and such, I'm off to help. So I probably won't be online too much for the next week and a bit. Happy Friday peops.


Big Shoulders Here To Stay

According to Balmain at Paris Fashion Week.

Must find perfect jacket.

Mad Men: The Barbie

I am not big on doll-versions of beautiful people, because it is impossible to capture the kind of beauty, sophistication and sauveness of Mad Men in a little bit of plastic. Barbie had her birthday last year. I think it's time she stopped with the special editions for a while.

I'm Kind of Busy

The highly anticipated video collaboration - Telephone - between Lady Gaga and Beyonce is due for release today. I love the song - it's definitely more Gaga than Beyonce, but I do love the idea of these two ladies collaborating again following on from Beyonce's Video Phone clip featuring Lady Gaga. There is also a huge nod from Gaga to Madonna in her styling for the clip...

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Another Reason to Love Gaga: Condom Lover

Lady Gaga has been running around with Cyndi Lauper and the MAC makeup team recently launching a campaign to raise awareness about HIV and AIDS... i.e. safe sex... i.e. condoms.

A highly quotable lady, she is.

Aaaah condoms. We love them but we kinda hate them too, right? A necessary evil. As is the old blood test before and after every new partner - and every 6 mths in between. In my old(er) age, I have become increasingly paranoid about the possibility of an STI (when did they stop being an STD by the way?) - probably because of the effects it can have on fertility. Although, having just learned that I'm going to be an aunt in a few months (!!!) and having looked at 12 week baby scans - the idea of baby-brewing remains buried. My biological clock doesn't seem to have batteries. Bless.

Gaga is smart. Her appeal in the campaign is to the vulnerable girls that we all know are out there, who don't have the balls to tell their boy to glove up.

"I see them every night and they are so beautiful and precious and lovely, but some of them are insecure and very troubled and not confident. I meet them and they cry, and they say 'Gaga you make me feel like I belong.'

And I think to myself about that one girl or those hundreds of thousands of girls who meet that guy at a club who makes them feel like they belong and they don't have that negotiation. We all know that having sex with a condom is a negotiation but it is Russian roulette

Right? Right.

She said: "I don't live in an era where you can sleep with whoever you want to sleep with. You have to really be careful with yourself and get to know people and get tested before you have sex is very important."

Latex, gloves. You can't go wrong.

Getting to know someone is one of the keys here. And y'all know you're not going to get to know someone over 5 drinks in a bar the first time you meet them...! Not that one night stands are bad, but you should insist on condoms in that instance. But I seriously can't recommend enough the getting to know you thing - sans sex. Not only does it make the sex more meaningful and fun (because you've talked about it so much by then), but prolonging things is just delicious. You know how much we enjoy sexual tension on TV shows? It's better when it happens to us! In real life! For serial! hahahaa (did you see what I did there? serial? TV shows?!). Right.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Diane Kruger

Reactions were apparently mixed to Diane Kruger's use of Chanel couture on the Oscars red carpet, but I think she's a pretty consistent star performer in the fashion stakes. Here she is looking rather fabulous in this month's UK edition of Marie Claire. She smokes. euw.

First Things First

The latest Penny Frost article - on lies. There is a hideous, and very serious mis-spelling in the article. And it's up in lights in the pink box (I have no idea why that part is even boxed, but I am not an editor so it's none of my business). It should be lies of commission, followed by lies of omission in the next paragraph. No matter. *sigh*

Lies by omission took up a lot of my head space the other week... What do you guys think about evasion? Does it build a man of mystery, or a man who should not be trusted?

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Some More ADR

From Jak & Jil.

Still Looking..

For the perfect jacket. I have banned myself from shopping until I get to Hong Kong. It's harder than you may think - particularly when for the past fortnight it has been raining (and as a result a tad cooler) and the winter fashions are appearing in-store. Y'all know my thoughts on the onset of winter... Not only am I looking forward to the HK warmth, I am mostly looking forward to seeing two of my oldest, favourite friends. It has been so long since we've been together for an extended period.

On Popularity


Oscars Colour

We were treated to one big splash of colour from Paula Patton...

Orange is a huge risk on a big red carpet.

Monday, March 8, 2010


And that does not stand for "Oscars Marred by Frog Gathering". No. It stands for what we in text-land know it stands for. I am once again unable to upload pictures.

So I will have to write my Oscars round-up, and post pictures later.

Key trends I saw on the red carpet this year were:
* Lovely, vintage-y diamondy earrings - not too OTT, but oozing class, sophistication and best of all, money.

* Speaking of oozing money and vintage-y diamondy bits of jewellery, this trend was particularly omnipotent on the neck and around the wrist - lots of gorgeous, envy-causing necklaces. A beautiful trend - very classy, and unlike the ankle strap on the shoe, the choker somehow elongates rather than truncates. Marvellous.

* Chandelier earrings - they're back! How long have they been on the backburner? I'm sure long before the GFC hit. Nevertheless, there were some stunning chandeliers on display, but top set goes to Best Supporting Actress Nominee Carey Mulligan.

* In terms of colour, there wasn't a lot of it. Stars seemed to stick to their vintage-y glamour (see jewels above), with block colours galore and plenty of always-reliable black or champagne being trotted out.

* Most excitingly there were lots of purples: deep burgundy through to lavender to lilac. Very pretty and feminine - like a field of pretty little flowers on the red carpet.

* Strapless or backless. These two words could basically sum up the style of the dresses floating along. There were a few one-shoulders (love your work, Tina Fey) but it was quite old-school in this department also. Can't go too far wrong with strapless when you're a star who has time and cashola at your disposal for some decent - and regular - personal training sessions... I adored Maggie Gyllenhall's printed strapless dress. She is a consistent beauty who pushes the envelope just enough to stand out, and restrains it all just enough to stay classy. And backless - Diane Kruger and SJP being the notable winners with this style.

* Hair was styled in very chic up-dos, with the monster buns stealing the show.

* My favourite was a tie between Maggie and SJP. Gorgeous.

What have we learnt? Old school glamour is in with a vengeance - we are talking restrained glamour. None of this glamazon, in-your-face-flesh or OTT dripping-in-bling type guff. Think the 1940s to the end of the 1950s. I think there was a lot of Betty Draper on a night out in Manhattan on the red carpet today - lovely diamond jewels at the ears and neck, with some glitz on the wrist also. Nothing huge and obnoxious though! And the female form is most certainly being celebrated - (covered) breasts, curves and beautiful hair are all in. Less emphasis on the red lips and black nails, more emphasis on the whole, sexy, 1950s, womanly package. I loved this year's Oscars. And I am crying on the inside that I cannot post pictures for y'all... Even though I know you've all already seen it by now.

PS: Clearly, I have updated with pictures now. But I was crying on the inside all of yesterday afternoon. Now I am happy.