Pursuing natural health & thinking beyond the superficial. Deconstructing Culture.

About Little ol’ me?

Life as we know it is about fashion; political, historical, cultural… Trends and anomalies, people seek to belong and stand out. I started off this blog as a way to show one of my then hobbies – amateur fashion design & fashion art but it’s moved on to incorporate much longer lasting interests. Unfortunately I couldn’t change the website address and didn’t want to start another blog but thankfully the name still fits, kinda. (Disclaimer – this isn’t a professional blog or advertising space, I’m not paid for content but do occasionally review items offered in exchange for a fair review.)

Am I Vegan or a Plant Based dieter?

I’m vegan, 11 years; regretfully didn’t start long before. Veganism is a lifestyle; for animals, the environment, human welfare and my personal health. I started for the first three factors and as I went along the last one was a direct benefit/effect. I learned more and more about where food comes from, what we are told are foods and how to forage, how food is produced, processed, affects the local communities, whether to leave it raw or cook/prepare it to make the nutrition more accessible for the human body and of course variety/increased choice of ingredients/products. I don’t fall into sub-sects of veganism because I embrace veg, fruit, wholegrains/grasses, nuts, seeds and beans (organic with hopefully organic seeds and fairtrade as much as possible, unrefined/non-pasteurized and filtered with reverse osmosis, distilled & UV’d water) and I use a variety of cooking/heating methods. I got into the personal health side because I was finding alternatives to what I was used to and trying to reduce artificial chemical intake from food/cosmetics/household products. I follow ayurvedic principles and holistic/homeopathic approaches for natural health and remedies/prevention. Whether my clothes are new or second hand there is no silk, leather, wool, fur or pearls. I realize it’s impossible to be 100% vegan as a modern day human in this reality/world we live in with animal bi-products everywhere, experimentation behind practically everything (and not labelled), human exploitation/vulnerability to toxic industrial processes/product handling and poverty all seen as common if seen through the complacency at all and what I call normalized atrocity. But I never stop trying to reduce or eliminate the non-vegan components in my existence; it’s not a matter/question of having enough money or resources such as time and availability, my being vegan is based on courage of conviction. Overcoming ignorance, having will power and the desire to be the most ethical is what it takes. I’ve wanted to be ‘good’ for as long as I can remember and have one underlying rule – not everyone is equal (anymore) but they must be treated fairly (I don’t forget and I don’t agree with forgiveness being an act of compassion, it’s given only if deserved and it can only have the opportunity to be deserved if it isn’t connected to something unacceptable) – that is what has allowed me to see that the arguments for and against ‘minorities’ are the same, it’s just the so-called ‘minority’ (even when the group is a majority) group that changes name/face.

Religion? Politics? Philosophy?

I don’t subscribe to any religion. I’m just looking as far back as possible and at any changes I find.

I was saying “I’m a member of the world/Earth” before Obama used it as a slogan though used ‘citizen’ instead.

I don’t subscribe to any particular political ideology either, even with the best intentions or what is marketed they get mis-used.

I’m Indian and born in Britian – does that mean anything? Depends, there’s things I like and dislike about both but that goes for cultures in general. I’m not one for patriotism or xenophobia.

If anything I look wistfully at the void/source/unmanifested and in terms of the manifested/living ethics is where it’s at, talent is just a bonus and is meaningless otherwise. Next to ethics is kindness, it can’t always be achieved in the realities we live in but if possible it rates high and things like fame don’t even register.

Am I a fashionista?

Nah. Thankfully I don’t have the burden of being a slave to fashion and I don’t feel the need to know what’s ‘in season’. I think life is stressful enough without the extra double edged candy of delight/dependency of ‘what’s in season’.

My personal ethos:

“If you put together clothes/accessories that look good on you, you like and are comfortable in then you will pretty much always be stylish – maybe not fashionable but definitely stylish.”

People always thought I spent a lot of money on clothing but the truth is I’m thrifty and practical, I’ve never had much disposable income and I live by ‘waste not, want not’. I basically look for quality that will last long, versatility that can be mixed and matched and value that is found from places like vintage/second hand stores/charity shops/auctions etc.

Remember at the end of the day ‘we’re’ here (the consumers) to buy, follow and make ‘them’, the fashion elite/people who decide what is fashionable, rich. They don’t really care about us or give us any credit for liking their work. They like those that defy trends like Gaga, as long as there’s only a few and not a large percentage of the population, because they can control that ‘rebellion’ by investing in it, cashing in – it’s another opportunity to make fashion for the rest of us. Not only do consumers create the wealth by buying, we are employed to do the work of making the garments, and then we buy/pay to advertise them.

I’m not a label buyer or a fashion buyer, I buy clothing I like and can afford without going into credit/debt that will take ages to pay off. Most of my clothes are second hand, vintage, charity shop, auction and I know when I have enough – I don’t just buy or spend for the sake of it. But that doesn’t mean I don’t have style. I’m just not into chain behaviour and I believe in quality/versatility/value. I like fairtrade, I’m not in to buying clothes whether cheap or expensive that have likely come from a sweatshop or underpaid overworked adult labour and I don’t want to haggle traders into buying from them at practically cost price either. I like fashion/adornment, the beauty of expression but I don’t think blood, sweat, tears, greed and ripoff should go into it and I don’t like the way its used as a tool for insecurity to pressure others.

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Comments on: "About Little ol’ me?" (99)

  1. Hi! Thanks for you really lovely comments, made me really smile, and glad you liked my jacket :)! Come to say sometime! And great blog!

    http://souphie.wordpress.com/

  2. pincurlsandlace said:

    Good work ladies and thanks for my subscription too xox

  3. Thanks for visiting my blog! I’m really happy you like my posts! It would be really cool if you came by again sometime! By the way, awesome blog!

  4. Very nice creative and design activities that you are engaged in. I wish you well.

  5. Very interesting topics you got here. Thanks also for your kind comment on mine. More power to you!

  6. Hello there! 🙂 Thank you for leaving a comment on my blog. 🙂

    Nice blog btw :))

  7. angela_carson said:

    Hi Dapper Dolly, thanks soooo much for adding my blog to your blog roll. I was so humbled and pleased to learn that today. Would love to email with you but couldn’t find email address for you so if you don’t mind, please shoot me a mail at angelabangalore (at) gmail.com so I can reply with more thanks 🙂 Big blog hug, angela

    • Hi Angela, I just sent you an email and like I said there, no need to thank me 🙂 – I thank you for having such an amazingly thoughtful and interesting blog that’s fun and informative to read.

  8. This is great. I resonate a lot with what you said.

    I once made a dress out of a curtain from my house in London. It’s hott, but I was about 10 pounds underweight at the time and can in no way squeeze into it anymore–otherwise I’d send you a pic. Also, the sewing’s a little rough. (I don’t actually “know how” to sew, although I’ll do it when I’m determined enough. Currently no sewing machine, so everything’s by hand. Which might be why I’m all into crocheting these days . . . )

    Thanks for visiting my blog and commenting!

    • No problem! 🙂

      The curtain dress reminds me of Gone with the Wind, and is a great idea since curtain fabric is usually better quality than a lot of dress fabric nowadays. I know what you mean about the makeshift sewing, I have a machine but nowhere to use it so I sew by hand too.

  9. Thanks for checking out my blog! I agree with the belief that you don’t need to spend a ridiculous amount of money to be fashionable, and that you should wear what you want. Great blog ❤

    ~S

  10. Rei Rifah Huq said:

    Hi Dolly 🙂
    I’ve seen your blog before, but today I just wanted to comment because I can’t find a way to message you; I really like your sense of style, the way you write, and the principles by which you carry yourself on ChicStar or anywhere else for that matter. Thank you for just being an all around amazing person and keep doing what you’re doing 😀

    • Wow thank you Rifah, I appreciate what you’ve said and I’ll continue to try to do my best 🙂 Also, my continued compliments to your designs on CS 🙂

  11. I love the description that you have of yourself! I agree that at the end of the day, it’s all about finding your personal style and what works for you. Very smartly put!

  12. Girl! Awesome sense of style
    Thank you for the comments and likes on my Blog
    Glad you found me
    Really appreciate it
    Blessings

  13. Thank you for your comment in my new blog, I am new in this world and it takes time to learn everything…Great post, totally agree with you, fashionable items are awesome but we have to find our way using what we have and turns it fashionable for us!XOXO

  14. uncommonprincess said:

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. I love yours and am now following!

    • No problem I really enjoyed reading your post that I replied to and thanks for taking the time to take a look at mine and even follow! 🙂 When I get some more time later I’ll take a better look at yours too 🙂

  15. Thanks for commenting on my blog! Now that I’m learning how pick my clothes a little more intelligently I think I’ll be stopping by more often…

  16. hi, i love love love this sentence “I’m not a label buyer, or a fashion buyer, I buy clothing I like, can afford without going into credit/debt that will take ages to pay off…” i buy as and when off streets while traveling, or as i always say i like to “dig” and see what treasures i may find… thanks for dropping a comment on my blog. Means a lot to me for i just started pushing myself to blog more frequently and sharing all my discoveries. =]

    • No problem, I really enjoyed reading your post and I look forward to seeing more :-). I understand the need for that push lol as my blogging isn’t consistent but I’d like it to be!

      Thank you so much for visiting my blog as well and I’m glad that we share the sentiment for ‘exploratory’ shopping, you’re right a treasure hunt is a good analogy for it!

      • thank you soooo much for being sooo encouraging and im very very glad you enjoy reading my post and making the effort to leave comments for me. i had fun reading and replying and knowing your views. Lets continue to share our “treasures”… xoxo

      • Definitely 🙂

  17. Thank you, I hope you enjoyed the photographs as much as I enjoyed putting that shoot together. Since I returned to freelancing, after becoming another corporate cast off, recession and all that, I am reinventing myself, or rather becoming the photographer I always was. Most importantly I’m sharing like never before, and having so much fun.

    • The photographs were beautiful quality. Being one of the growing number of ‘corporate cast offs’ (great expression) at least gives you more flexibility and choice even though it’s very hard to get by, so it’s great to see you enjoying your freedom.

  18. Thanks so much for popping by and liking my recent post! I had a blast and am so happy you were able to take a peek! I’ve enjoyed checking out your blog!

    • No problem 🙂 you look really beautiful in your pics. Thanks for taking the time to take a look at my blog too, I’m glad you liked it 🙂

  19. Jude Vida said:

    Hey Dolly,

    I just decided to swing by and leave a lil comment. I was wondering if you were still going to make a forum on your blog? Looking forward to it. 🙂

    Jude

    • Hi Jude,

      Nice to see you 🙂 I think I mentioned on Raiven’s forum that I was kinda off the idea of making a forum since Gary agreed to make one and I gave him some ideas that would be fun for the members. It seemed to make the one I thought about unnecessary, and since then I’ve thought that people might prefer an official one with real staff support/mods. I’m not totally against the idea of making one though, but I can’t at the moment (anymore) since I’m running a competition that will end at the end of July. Until that’s all finished, I can’t upgrade the blog to allow for a forum because that would change the address link and the entrants and advertisers have this link. Hopefully CS will have one up by then.

      All the best 🙂

  20. thanks for stopping by Liveblissful, you have beautiful designs

  21. So very refreshing to hear your perspective on fashion. As a child I despaired that all my clothing was purchased at thrift stores or hand made, now I rejoice in the skills I learned with that kind of upbringing. I’m encouraged to hear that you, also, don’t want to support the sweat shops. 🙂 There are a lot of lovely articles of clothing that are tossed before they are dead!

    • Thank you very much for visiting and leaving the wonderful comment 🙂

      I totally agree, most of my clothes as a kid and well into my teens were hand-me-downs or things that my mother chose for both my sister and I to wear together (I didn’t mind too much when I was little lol) and as young teen I wore mostly uniform anyway. But it’s important to appreciate that money doesn’t come out of thin air and I too was taught to treat my clothes properly. It’s always great to come across like minds and I definitely believe that since we’re seen as consumers on legs, that we should try and make ethical spending choices and the more of us that do it the more it will count.

      Yes way too many clothes and fabrics hit the landfills when they can still be worn, donated or recycled. I’ve seen so many awesome and creative upcycling projects by bloggers, it’s awesome 😀

      Thanks again for stopping by, I appreciate it 🙂

      • I’ve been thinking a lot about recycling and upcycling projects and it’s a difficult line to draw between having minimal time and being a responsible consumer. I wish I could recycle all my clothing with holes into handbags, etc but unfortunately I lack the time to be able to do that. 😦 How do you strike a balance between wanting to be trendy and not be a mall hunter?

      • I understand and don’t worry, there are other ways in which you can pass on clothing that you no longer need :). Not many of us have the time to be ‘domestic goddesses’ so we can look to other avenues to adapt. For example, I donate a lot of clothing and fabrics to various charities but I make sure to split them into two groups – saleable items and non-saleable items. I’ve found that a lot of charity stores are only interested in items that they can re-sell but many people have items that are no longer saleable, but still in good, wearable condition so for those clothes I’ve found places that give the items directly to the vulnerable, rather than sell them first. There are also some shops near me that take clothes and recycle them into new clothes themselves and then sell them. My local council also picks up bags of clothing recycling if there’s a lot of them and there are clothes ‘bins’ (big recycle containers) for donations and recycling in local areas. There’s always local Salvation Army type centres and shelters. There are businesses that will collect clothes from your door if you use their bags to put them in – it’s best to find and contact them yourself though because there are a few of those who advertise door to door and then sell the clothes left for them.

        There’s also quite a few social alternatives for passing on clothes nowadays; ‘swap meets/parties’ are becoming increasingly popular and shops that will pay you for giving them items. There are public ones and private ones where friends organize a get together at somebody’s home and swap clothes, it can fun to look into each other’s wardrobes so to speak and swap clothes with each other. The public ones are cool as well because there’s so much to choose from. Each public one will work differently but they generally give you an amount of points or currency value for the clothes you bring in and donate and then you can spend that amount on the clothes available. Or some have a haggle system where you can offer a piece of your clothing for something of similar value with someone else if see someone with an item of clothing you like.

        Then there’s vintage fashion shops and fairs – there’s a number of regular fairs/fayres where I live where you pay a small admission fee and then explore and spend to your hearts content (some of them even sell by weight which is awesome) but you can also sell items. Vintage shops will often buy nice second hand pieces as well. Local fairs of any type are easy to donate too as well e.g. school jumble sales or anyone doing a fundraiser.

        There’s also the option of selling your clothes through places like auction sites (e.g. eBay) or simply giving them to family and friends.

        Some of the options take a bit of time and effort to start and research but once you get used to it, they can take very little time and just get added to your routine. Some of them can become treats and leisure time for yourself too like the swap parties and fashion fairs.

        In regards to being trendy – swap parties are probably the best way because less of what’s on offer will be vintage. However, if you want to buy new on-trend items voucher/coupon websites very helpful and cashback sites where you register, sign in and then shop ‘through’ them i.e. they have the major shops connected to their website and you click on the links to the shops that you would normally go to via the cashback site. Then when you make your purchases you get cashback and/or rewards.

        Anyway, I hope you find some of the suggestions helpful and again, don’t worry – it can be a little daunting, but it can be done and once you get into the swing of things, it can be done more easily 🙂

  22. thanks so much for liking my blog post. I love yours and the cool look you have going about.. I hope to see more of your posts. I’d also like to invite you visit again & again!

    • You’re welcome and I loved what I saw! 🙂 Your post in my reader looked so delectable and when I looked at the whole post the recipe was just as great. Thank you for the compliment and as I love spicy food I’ll remember your blog :).

  23. We seem to share the same fashion philosophy. Thank you for appreciating my treasures, too.

  24. Living proof you don’t need money for style; you need style for style.

    • Very wise words and I’m honoured that you can apply them to me; thank you very much for the compliment and for visiting/commenting 🙂

  25. Cheers to you and to the proclamation that style is in our souls not our pocketbooks! Your blog is lovely and I couldn’t agree more.

  26. mtsedwards said:

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. Your comments made me smile – sometimes, a simple “like” just doesn’t do it for me, ya know? I’ve perused your fashion shoots and I’m simply blown away by your fashion sense. Such drama! Such verve! Do you truly wear them as everyday attire? Phenomenal! And you, m’dear, are thoroughly stunning. 😀

    • No problem and I thoroughly understand, I miss the days of commenting and/or liking with the old wordpress reader! Thank you so much for visiting and for the wonderful words! I’m glad you like pics and mine and my mother’s styles and yes we do dress a bit ‘out there’ normally lol but I figure as long as it’s not inappropriate it’s good to be true to what feels ‘true’ and comfortable :). You yourself have fantastic taste and style and I was very impressed with the photos I saw. Thanks again and all the best! 🙂

  27. I very much enjoyed reading this “about me ” page. What stuck out to me the most was the part about you not supporting disposable/fast fashion. I feel the same way but at this point I do not exclusively buy clothes that were made ethically or from the thrift store although a much of my wardrobe fits the description. One day I would like to change that. Thank you for sharing these progressive views. It is nice to know there are like minded people out there that I can interact with even if it is only on word press.

    • Thank you so much for taking the time to visit and for your wonderful comments/likes. I too am glad that blogs have been able to connect me to others with like minded views as they’ve provided a lot of support and inspiration :).

      It’s definitely hard to buy/come across all fairtrade or vintage clothing given budget and limitations on accessibility/variety but I’ve been happy to see many people learning or re-learning how to sew which is a great skill to have as well as upcycling :). Buying vintage by weight (where available) is the most economical, prevents much of it from going to a landfill and is quite the shopping experience.

      I once had the fortune or buying a beautiful ‘Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend’ type dress in Red with White underlay from eBay but what made it so special was that it was made by a US women’s union of seamstresses around the second world war who took a stand for their rights regardless of race, background and citizen status (as many were newly immigrated and hence treated even more complacently) and were able to become an official formal union so that they would no longer be underpaid and overworked. I was quite proud of that dress and of course the flawless construction that had allowed it to survive to this day with only a couple of cursory stains. It’s great how supporting vintage can lead us to finds with history 🙂

      Thanks again for visiting!

  28. You have such a unique sense of style! I love the color pairings:)

  29. Thanks for stopping by enSALADes 🙂 I love your philosophy and share your interest in natural health. Have a lovely day!

  30. I nominated you for the Dragon’s Loyalty Award – http://wp.me/p3Nc97-ja, Wish you a wonderful New Year!

    • Congratulations and wow thank you so much for nominating me too! I apologize for my belated reply but I will get to the recipient post in my next round of posts 🙂
      x

  31. Thanks for the nice comments! I’m trying to make healthy changes in my life, and it’s good to connect with others who are doing the same. I love your creativity! Keep up the blogging–it’s good stuff!

    • No problem and thank you too for taking the time to look at my blog and leave a lovely comment 🙂 I agree the blogosphere can be a great inspiration/info sharing place!

  32. Hi Dapperdolly! Thank you so much for taking the time to look at my blog. I hope that you will find future post fun, inspirational or something that takes your mind off of the stresses of life for a minute or two.
    Love your creative energy & sense of self. I will be following your blog as well.

    • No problem and thank you as well! I look forward to seeing more of your posts and am glad that you like my blog too 🙂 Blogging and reading the blogs of others is indeed a nice hobby for expression and relaxation 🙂

  33. Hi Dapperdolly. Thanks for visiting my blog http://veggiechica.com . Glad I checked out your blog. I admire what you are trying to do. Keep up the great work.

  34. Hi babe 🙂
    I don’t know if you have more than 1,000 followers but I nominated you for the Liebster Award here: http://mimosasandfashion.wordpress.com/2014/02/03/the-liebster-award/
    I love your blog and your style 🙂 xx

    • Aw thank you so much, and congratulations! I received the award last year but it’s wonderful to be thought of and I’m so glad you like my blog enough to nominate it, though if you like can give my spot to another deserving blogger too 🙂

      Congrats again and all the best! 😀

  35. I think you’re a star so I nominated you for the Shine On award 😀 haha.
    It’s over here : http://forvanityssake.com/2014/02/06/1st-shine-on-award/

    • Aw thank you and mega congrats! I’m touched that you thought of me when nominating and that you like my blog enough to do so, it’s a beautiful award and I’ll make the acceptance post soon with a link back to you 🙂

      All the best!

  36. I love your about me. Makes me feel like i actually know you. Like we could be friends. And also thanks for checking out my blog

    • Thank you very much, I’m glad that you appreciate it and think it’s well written 🙂

      Your blog is a delight in that it’s both beautiful and interesting, I was glad to discover it.

  37. Congratulations!

    I have nominated your blog for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award.

    More about this nomination is at

    http://dearkitty1.wordpress.com/2014/02/10/very-inspiring-blogger-award-thank-you-tazein/

    • Oh wow thank you, that is so kind and has made my morning! Congratulations on your very well deserved award and heartfelt thanks for forwarding it to me. I’m honoured to receive it from you and to be among the very informative and educational blogs you’ve listed. Your blog content is important and I value reading the articles you’ve posted. Additionally your stats are very interesting.

      Congrats and thanks again and I will post the acceptance soon whilst linking back to you 🙂

      All the best and have a lovely day!

  38. Thanks for the visit, Dapper Dolly 😀
    A vegan lifestyle is the best way to be. It shows that you are a compassionate person who can think beyond yourself. Fashion can certainly be created without harming animals, if only poeple cared enough.

    All the best, Emy

    • You’re more than welcome and thank you, you’re doing good work 🙂

      I appreciate that you visited my blog and am honoured that you found something you could relate to and agree with and something so important/urgent no less. I completely agree with you about fashion and how it extends to consumerism in general.

      All the best! 🙂

  39. Dear Dapper Dolly,

    I really enjoyed reading your about me page. It is lovely to see your strength and conviction shine through in your writing. It seems as though we share common interests in both literature and fashion. I look forward to reading more of your blog, and getting to know you 🙂

    PS. Thank you so much for leaving a comment on my page! I’m rather new to the blogosphere and I really do appreciate your feedback and response. Till soon, I hope! 🙂

    • Thank you, I’m glad there’s some character in my writing, it always sounds so deadpan to me when I read it back lol and no worries, I loved your post :-). A belated and hearty welcome to the blogosphere and I too look forward to seeing your posts and getting to know your author’s voice (and awesome pictures).

      All the best! 😀

  40. Great read and I admire your veganism – wish I had the strength of will

  41. Hi Dapper Dolly, you have a nice blog here, inspiring fashion the compassionate and natural way. I appreciate your vegan lifestyle. I’m not very well-versed in fashion, but I believe I will learn from your inspiring blog, and share ideas on frugal and healthy living.

    • Hello Apsara, thank you for visiting and commenting 🙂 I’m deeply honoured that we have mutual interests and can learn and be inspired from our blogs. Your recipes are very well presented, the preparation for ingredients is informative and you have so many interesting ideas. I need some bitter gourd chips now!

      Thanks again and all the best 🙂

  42. I nominated for the leibster award but feel free to ignore it I won’t be offended! http://catsholidayperfume.wordpress.com/2014/04/04/a-second-liebster-award/

  43. Thank you for sharing! I’m thinking about becoming vegan, but I’ll probably start once is go off to college. 😉

    Thank you for taking the time to read my blog as well! 🙂

  44. Hi! I’m Camila from thegeekchick.com and I love you’re blog, so I nominate you as one of the Top 10 fashion bloggers on WordPress! Check out all the details here:
    http://thatchicfashionblog.wordpress.com/the-fashionista-award/

    • Aw thank you hun and hearty congrats to you! 🙂

      I haven’t done anything fashionable in a while but I guess my pics are stylish… Lol I’ll try to do the post soon though I still have another to do from months ago :-S and you’re on my list of people to pass that on to 🙂

  45. I would *LOVE* to reblog your work, but, er, your reblog button is turned off.

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