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

Posts tagged ‘Clothing’

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Just some Prints I Designed Recently – July

I called these ones my DNA prints, my re-imagining of that structure. I was trying to figure out what to do with this one, and then went for a much more wearable alternative.

Original idea/inspiration:

tesselate1

I had another but it was too Aztec looking so went with these:

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Living by Example is Hard; be Prepared to be Coughed/Sneezed/Laughed/Spat at

Organic and fairtrade products: are they part of your shopping list and do you think it’s just another marketing argument?

People, you can’t live with them you can’t live without them though many seem to think or would prefer to employ automatons. People are a massive resource and hence massive drain in terms of needs i.e. supply and demand, everything from food to  living/entertainment space. Mechanization increases but people are still needed and they still need jobs and it’s damned hard to find the right people because an increasing amount have been introduced to the ideas of pay they don’t need to top up with ‘benefits’, timetables that don’t run them ragged, safer buildings/tools , sick time, time to have babies, family emergencies etc. What to do, what to do and in many cases the only thing possible; go abroad/outsource.

Competition makes the world go round, keeps the market place fresh and free from monopoly? It’s easy to see the benefits of competition but people are people so monopolization doesn’t stop; pit two or more suppliers against each other and you have a bidding war effectively setting the prices you will pay. What can producers/suppliers do? Exterminate/undercut the competition a lot of the time but some team up and say this is what it costs to make plus justifiable overheads. We need to make what we make and sell sustainable, we need to keep our economy and environment accessible and not outprice ourselves and if sh*t happens like damaged crops we need to know we’ll have some security and assistance from other growers who can pick up the slack and provide for us too, like we would for them. That is fairtrade and community trade. We also don’t want to damage our health and land or have to kill ourselves and our families because the GMO seed we were encouraged to buy doesn’t yield crops that reproduce/well and so have to keep buying neither do we want further restrictions on natural pesticides/fertilizers and forced use of agrochemicals; that is organic, or at least not GM. The ‘trick’ of organic marketing? You’re asked to pay more for what you would traditionally make/use if you weren’t making/using GM. The ‘trick’ with fairtrade is that it’s like minimum wage, it falls short in many ways and can make you dependent/limit your social mobility and yet many would say it’s better than nothing. I say do a bit of research at least and find out which companies/organisations you don’t mind your money supporting and show the companies whose practises you disagree with that you’ll be finding alternatives.

It’s not all about Organic vs GM; ‘organic’ means being certified and hopefully adhering to rules and guidelines from certain organizations. That doesn’t necessarily mean others don’t meet those/similar standards or are low quality just that the manufacturer couldn’t, wouldn’t or haven’t yet gotten organic status. Then there’s genetically modified (GM or nowadays GMO) crops. This can make it confusing with ingredients that either aren’t labelled ‘organic’ or ‘GM’ (if the ingredients are labelled at all) or aren’t one or the other.

Have you ever tried to grow those potatoes that you don’t/can’t eat but don’t want to waste? Leave the GM ones and see what happens, nada or next to nothing, even after months. Organic or in-betweeners (neither one or the other label) will do what they’re supposed to do and invert themselves into new.

Like anybody else I’m constantly confronted by things/people that question me and my way of life, it’s not easy or comfortable but I’m always looking to improve and my standards are high; even if I feel the desire to be defensive doesn’t mean I’ll ignore these things but it also doesn’t mean that I’ll specifically pay attention to them to demean them.

Fairtrade is another label but shouldn’t be, it should be the default. Think about every product you buy/use/consume and then think about every piece/ingredient in the composition and then the quantities needed for at least one population let alone the resources needed to make those. ‘Fairtrade’ makes up a tiny proportion of that labelled or not and for those who think of it as charity, why hasn’t it begun at home? We’ve got plenty of poor in this country, yet bargain fever has become rampant in the last decade and has taken haggling or scouring discounts/clearance/seconds as a normalcy for poor to just trying to rip of traders to get items as cheap as possible and it’s fun and fulfilling. That’s just added to cheapness over value and ‘fast’ items that that people feel even less inclined to take care of and keep in as good condition as possible.

From the above you can see that fairtrade and organic don’t just apply to food/drinks; think about cosmetics and clothing/fabrics for example. We can’t always buy from those areas so what are the other options?

  1. I donate clothing 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.
  2. In London there are also some shops near me that took clothes and recycled them into new clothes themselves and then sell them.
  3. The local council picked 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.
  4. There’s always local Salvation Army type centres and shelters.
  5. 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.
  6. 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 barter 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.
  7. Then there’s vintage fashion shops and fairs/fayres – some 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.
  8. 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.
  9. Or if you’re like me you keep clothes as long as possible, you have socks leftover from when you were a kid, you handwash (or many who have washing machines use ‘gentle washes’), you have lot’s of hand-me-downs and hand-me-ups whereby people borrow/take your clothing.
  10. However as many of you probably do already; 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.

Back to Food

We’ve seen a rise in comlady munity if not fairtrade in the form of foodbanks, something I admire and advocate though it doesn’t always go as well as it should. Mum & I qualified for a foodbank at one stage, well we probably almost always have but had never been spoken to about it or looked into benefiting from them ourselves though I have donated (I’ve lived by an old Indian adage of splitting income roughly into quarters; to taxes, family, charity and yourself; unfortunately I’m the only living Indian I’ve known to do that). We were excited that finally we might have something different to eat, more than small portions and not have to stress/worry about food for the week. We’re vegan but many people don’t know what that means traditionally let alone what it can entail in today’s age of food sensitivities so I spoke to a lady there in advance to find out more and to explain our situation; usually they chose people’s food for them (4 carrier bags a head) and either left it to be collected or delivered it but sometimes people chose for themselves. They decided it was best for us to do so and agreed that since we wouldn’t be taking some items that it would be ok to take more of others. We went and didn’t think there’d be much accessible to us but tried not to have any other expectations other than we were just grateful to have the opportunity but were amazed at the variety they had and so many items that would could eat. We got on really well with the staff there and obviously they supervised us picking our items. We walk a 6-mile roundtrip to town so asked for the items to be delivered and they confirmed they would be so by the other shift the following day. Lo and behold it was pouring down the next day and said shift were in a rush so knocked, left everything outside and drove off before I opened the door; we;d been eagerly awaiting the day since we’d only taken some rice crackers and peanut butter for the day before (as wisely advised by the staff we’d met since you have to eat every day) but we were dismayed to find that they gave us 1 person’s allowance and 2/3 of of that had been replaced; the whole lot was a typical vegetarian ‘order’ with things like rice pudding, custard, sauce with fish in it, cosmetics etc and items we didn’t need such as toothbrushes and cloths. So we called and I spoke to the lady who I’d originally spoken to who said to return the items and get more suitable ones. We lugged it all back but unfortunately were not met by that lady or the staff we’d met but the staff who’d repacked our bags and they did not like it one bit. They were all talking about us and when I tried to ask one a question she told me not to talk to her, she wasn’t dealing with us. I went to the one ‘dealing’ with us and she said that because of our ‘irregular and oversized’ order they’d had a meeting and changed the rules for everybody and now there was an itemized list that all people going there had to adhere to, no exceptions. I said that wasn’t necessary and not fair to everybody, perhaps we could just fix the situation, but the fact that we’d brought back the whole delivery so as to start again and not keep anything/get more than others it gave them (yes all of them) ammunition to pick apart why we wouldn’t accept things that they thought we could/should have due to their notion of ‘vegan’ and how we should prepare those foods if we didn’t want to go the normal route. Then not only did she supervise us, she escorted us to the items on her list whilst they all continued to talk&whisper and she kept going on about the amount of sweetcorn we took “13 tins, 13 tins – how many do you need? We can’t let you have more, we have to think about everybody, there’s more people than just you, you can’t take from them” in increasing volume and cut me off every time I tried to answer. I finally got tearful and upset enough to almost have to yell over her “What size were those tins and what sizes did you replace them with?” Stumped she went back to the pack and conferred… At the same time one of the staff from the first day we’d visited arrived and greeted us but was told not to talk to us, she said “they’re ok, I met them the…” She couldn’t finish “that’s enough (name), we had a trustee meeting last night about this and decided on a new process.” Then oh dear, it turned out that the sweetcorn we had chosen were 2 sealed packs of 6x100g tins plus an extra that had been separated. They replaced those with 3x400g tins… Yep, no problem there really was there? She said there must have been a mistake, they must have mixed up the deliveries, I replied she could have just called us if she had any qualms about our order instead of changing everything as that would have prevented the situation and she actually agreed but said that it was too late. I agreed it was and told them we’d just continue living off seaweed, thank you for the opportunity and sorry it turned out this way, we didn’t mean nor want to cause any trouble; and walked out.

The tip of the iceberg of that situation? They’d packed a delivery note with the items that mentioned God 4 times and how if we’re thankful it should be for His mercy and generosity through His workers (the foodbank) and supporters and that He has charity and love for all. Obviously not for vegans.

Community trade is a great thing in society but it has be organized fairly, as a whole we people have not matured or moved on from the ego, for all our enlightenment and good intentions fairtrade is not the norm.

Food Sensitivities – Higher Quality and Organic aren’t Myths

As we develop in and from childhood we are weened onto many foods that we wouldn’t otherwise digest/digest well; I’ve spent much of my life de-acclimatizing and I find I’m no longer immune to many ingredients that I could previously eat without obvious issues; part of that is probably due to getting older but I’ve also been careful not to get to a point in my life where the digestion goes (inflammation, gas, acid) and overall health steadily follows suit from blood pressure to disease. Other than sleep, digestion accounts for a huge amount of our time (& energy).

  1. I’ve always been unable to eat GM fruit/veg unless cooked; my gums, tongue, cheeks, throat swell up and itch like mad – even my teeth feel irritated because of that and sometimes it affects my nose.
  2. I can regularly consume cacao; it aids my digestion and I don’t gain weight. Cocoa does not help as much, it still counters inflammation but does not fully ease or remove gas or quickly pass the ‘food’ that caused the issues through the system, I also gain weight.
  3. The same goes for refined oils; I love oil and know that it isn’t a case of saturated vs unsaturated but more of overly processed and refined vs organic or raw/virgin. Unrefined helps my weight maintenance or even indeed makes me feel hungrier quicker but refined has the opposite effect.
  4. White sugar – this is a recent development; I can eat molasses, muscovado, demerera to my heart’s content but refined White sugar = a downer. I can have a bit and you’ll be hard pressed to not have any in foods you buy but even a packet of crisps with it as one of the main ingredients can lead to days of me sat with my head on the table, unable to concentrate, feeling out of it and not able to move about much.
  5. White salt – again I have no problems with rock salt/Himalayan Pink/Red/Black salt, Epsom, Bicarbonate of Soda, Nigari (specially extracted), I’m a little wary of sea salt due to pollution but am ok with it but refined White salt? Forget it.
  6. GM and low quality pasta and sometimes even rice (cereals and grains) can cause indigestion for days as well, not the case with organic and higher quality grains. I even get that from sprouting unless they are wholegrains.
  7. I stopped eating artificial colourings, flavourings, preservatives; most E-numbers and gelatin at age 13 so when I see them used commonly even in things like dried fruit that doesn’t need them (and if really necessary a little oil would do) I avoid them.
  8. Raw vs traditional methods of heat preparation/cooking – I’m not a raw foodist but do believe that the more you heat (and moreso for microwave ovens) the more damage you do to the food. Given that I do cook food I’m not prepared to have even less nutritional value available to start with GM ingredients.

Organic does Not have to mean having a Big Budget

Many of you have probably heard of/use is MoneySavingExpert; on the food forum there are lot’s of people who post about deals/sales/clearance and there are some dedicated members that regularly post about organic food they find/look for which is very helpful and of course you can add your own. There are also sites that specialize in food that is past their sell by (but within ‘use by’) and best before dates but are still fine to have.

Buying in bulk really helps too, moreso from places that sell wholesale to the public or if you buy over a certain amount, plus member deals.

Money isn’t the only currency; just like we write reviews for vouchers/points/digital cash, there’s also exchange, bartering, cashback/point schemes; it was those that really helped me through being freegan for a year.

I haven’t starved yet.

Many of you may be thinking what the hell do I eat and would be surprised at just how varied and sophisticated my palate is and how I don’t find it restricted at all in terms of foods that I can eat, the limitations are not in my choices but the availability/accessibility or mostly the lack of opportunity to have them like those animals you see being pushed away from the food they can see all over the streets in their faces but not being one of the chosen.

Those who say they don’t have money to burn but still do. Priorities.

Mum & I forage and don’t find it shameful or embarrassing. Plenty stare and talk about us like we’re crazy whilst they go past usually with shopping bags or in big or pricey cars. Granted I live in the New Forest now so there’s a ton of vegetation but most still rely on supermarkets and to an extent their gardens, there’s a distinct lack of green grocers in this town though there are farms/nurseries (there’s an M&S, Waitrose, Tesco & 99p Stores and a mixed product market on Saturdays) and the council spend a lot of resources clearing and cutting back the flora as well as making the place pretty with decorative plants/trees; if government just planted obvious food growing plants/trees instead or even just fruit trees there’d be a lot less hungry people but that wouldn’t be good for business and people buying into established energy hungry processes is more important than the immediate poverty need. Better to buy a whole load of industrial scale grown food, make it more well travelled than the people, radiate and treat it some more, rely on people neither understanding sell/use by/best before dates, nutritional tables or that food doesn’t need to be ‘pretty’, and them wanting it as cheap as possible than having them realize there’s lot of free food around if they know where/how to look and show etiquette in their picking habits i.e. not going into people’s gardens, not destroying plants and not taking too much. What happens to all the food/plants that aren’t bought or needed – mostly destroyed/dumped.

When you look at the back of a book or toilet roll what do you see? Is there an FSC or similar ‘renewable’ ‘sustainable’ ‘well managed’ etc sign/label on there? Yeah we know the downsides of forest management but we also know the downsides of deforestation and yet what do you prefer – good quality paper and wood or mdf/wood filler and false economy bog roll that disappears quickly, the price is higher for one unless you budget, moderate your use and look after your items well but it’s better than the other isn’t it? The same goes for food – do you prefer wholefoods or foods filled with filler (like cellulose ironically)?

For many food and all the items they put in/on/through their body pale in importance to other obligations and hobbies but ultimately you only have yourself to rely on in this life and I figure the less you care about the things that directly/immediately affect you at the very least, the more you are robbing yourself… Of your consciousness, your health, yourself.

What’s the Alternative if Not Fairtrade and Organic?

Those of you who grow your own fruit/veg/herbs and even animals without GM and hormones; would you go back to/give it up for supermarket equivalents and I don’t mean the ‘luxury’ stuff ?(Though growing & asking for less/simpler processes is ironically seen as luxurious/more pricey.) I’ve tasted the difference between juicy, sweet fruit and the dry, fibrous, weak tasting (especially in comparison to organic farms I’ve been to), barely or over-ripened supermarket fruit that sometimes hasn’t had the benefit of sunlight.

People are people – the majority of this planet live in abject poverty and I don’t agree with the ‘beggars can’t be choosers’ (I’ve been told that how many times myself and it’s one of my aims never to say that anybody except perhaps those who’ve though it ok for others) GM thinking that they should be mollified with low grade & cast offs. I’ve come across production people here wanting to hire women so they can pay them less and those with the mentality that those they import off abroad have it good nowadays ‘they can buy this on this day, that on that day, this many times a week‘ yet they can buy it any or all the time almost anywhere. If we don’t use our power & influence with purchasing decisions, thinking such things are luxuries that can’t and shouldn’t be afforded until one’s situation is better then I don’t think we have the right to wonder why wages are low or stagnant whilst prices rise – why? Because most think that way and it adds up, we’re not one person – we’re part of a very large group/family and within that are groups living off each other. I prefer fair/community trade in this world model we live in and I prefer what I consider ‘cleaner’ organic or high quality ingredients/items, I’m not in to buying anything whether cheap or expensive that has likely come from a sweatshop or underpaid overworked adult labour and I don’t want to push traders into buying from them at practically cost price either. I don’t think blood, sweat, tears, greed and ripoff should go into it. We can’t expect with one hand, take with the other and think things will get better.

Organic Farmer GMO Hazmat Farmer

The purpose of this was to simply provide personal experience, ideas and scope – things that can easily get lost in the subject as we get used to advertising campaigns. I’ve not gone into studies because when I read those it’s usually for specific things and not getting caught up in the hysteria, there’s results that come out in favour or against all of the sides and much is dependent on the sponsors. Like everybody else I try to just keep going but I also try to live/be real positive change and not just pontificate about it, that’s why I have my body and mind afterall 🙂

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SockItToMe Sock Design Contest

Cheerful is as cheerful does right? Better to smile this early in the morning than frown and set my face for the day lol especially in this stormy weather! 3rd day now – I could totally do with a Johny 5 moment wake up call 😐

Anyway Mum and I entered this great competition a couple of weeks ago, a very simple and straightforward design contest that a lot of people had fun with 🙂 I’d never designed anything for feet before but have always been an admirer of fun, soft, long socks especially in warm or fluffy material (and yes pom poms too ^^’ ).

Unfortunately out of only 4500 entries (yeah that’s not much when it comes to testing my luck 😛 ) we didn’t make the 30 finalists for voting but like with any contest there were so many cool and quirky entries and out of the finalists there’s the usual mix of greats and… Good luck to ’em and congrats thus far 🙂

So since my tea is finished *looks at the pile of used tea bags* and I’m still lethargic here’s our what our entries looked like for the hell of it. Don’t laugh!

Poket

purse

Seet-Shop1

UnderSea

SocksandLadders

Note: Any length below the knee was eligible but the longer ones seem the most popular. Also these are just the rough presentation images, the smooth vectors & high res stuff is kept separately.

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‘Does My Bum Look Big in This?’ – Fashionista Award :-)

Fashionista Blog Award I was honoured enough to receive this award twice, first from Camila of TheGeekChickBlog and then from HuiMin from HuiMinxoxo; I don’t usually do more than one post on the occasion I receive an award more than once but since I’m a ‘slow poke’ I hadn’t got round to writing the reciprocation post to Camila when HuiMin awarded me too. Funnily enough I was going to nominate HuiMin for the award when I received it from Camila but she beat me to it! So in this instance I’m writing a post in thanks to both of the lovely ladies for their generous gestures 🙂

Additionally I find this award to be quite unique in that the creator has a personal touch and likes to be informed as to whose been nominated and explains that this is a chain of recognition and thanks which I think is lovely. So I’ve duly left a comment on her post letting her know I was awarded and to my awardees, please feel free to do the same.

This is her link: http://thatchicfashionblog.wordpress.com/the-fashionista-award/ 🙂

Rules:

Reference the blogger who nominated you

Answer 10 questions asked of you by the nominator

Link back to the award creator and nominate 10 others for the award

Inform the 10 nominees and ask them to comment on the creator’s page to enter to win the award

Give 10 questions for your nominees to answer

Questions to Me:

I’ve answered a mix from both of my nominator’s questions otherwise there’d be too many and some were duplicates 🙂

1) What motivated you to start blogging?

 I started this blog at first as a help guide for the rules, nuances and community know how for other members of Chicstar.com and as somewhere to keep and showcase my fashion designs for the ongoing design contest there where they ‘accept’ designs to make prototypes for auction and if successful/’wins’ the design is produced and sold in their store. There’s also a weekly customer photo competition and a myriad of other contests/initiatives that come and go. Six years later, a few hundred designs, 89 photos submitted I was the only old member who had never been accepted or won. So I decided to call it quits except a few comments now and then. I was a member for a long time before I started this blog so I just started posting my designs here from that point. No one can say I was a quitter, I kept trying to improve, be innovative and creative/versatile yet keep the target audiences in mind etc but when something is so deeply and/or publicly humiliating and frustrating it’s best to cut the ties.

After that the blog obviously took a different direction and has continued to do so opening up into various sections which I like because I post in more subjects. That doesn’t mean one topic doesn’t have enough scope to blog about as many of the theme focused blogs demonstrate very well but I’m a bit like a tree, I have roots and branches 🙂 (maybe the odd woodpecker). It’s not a business blog either so I’m not looking for popularity, I like that I can keep a personal touch and post when I can/want instead of feel obligated or pressured.

I should have started blogging earlier really like a couple of people around me recommended, instead of nattering with them 😛

2) Favorite movies?

This is a handy question because I’ve already written my top five on my blog so I don’t have to think about it!

a. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s/Sorcerer’s Stone (2001),

1 - Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stoneb. 9 to 5 (1980),

nine to five 1980 jane fonda dolly parton lily tomlin judy violet dora lee franklin hartc. Short Circuit (1986),

Short Circuit Johnny 5 Stephanie Robot Friends Filmd. Without a Clue (1988), and

Without A Clue 1988 Detective Comedy Spoof Sherlock Holmes Dr Watson Ben Kingsley Michael Cainee) The Age of Innocence (1993).

The Age of Innocence Michelle Pheiffer Daniel Day Lewis Winona Ryder Edith Wharton Film Review Martin Scorsese 1993

Like many people I’ve seen a lot of films and so many are enthralling, moving, inspiring, visual treat/arty, intriguing, surreal etc but many of the ‘best’ or ‘most well made’ films are ones that I couldn’t/wouldn’t watch again or would have to feel ‘ready’ for usually because they’re overwhelming and/or harrowing; nowadays the ones that I like the best are heartfelt and if possible have a good laugh involved.

3) What is you’re dream career?

I really don’t have those kinds of aspirations anymore, I’d just like to retire!

4) How do you decide on your outfit every day?

I try to think about it the night before but it’s also a balance between my mood and how appropriate an outfit would be for whatever I’m doing, so I could end up in ‘rough’ pants (e.g. skater/hiking/combats) and a cute/smart top lol. How healthy/fit I feel also comes into it, don’t want a fitted top if I don’t feel I’ve digested properly for example. That said I think if you’ve got the right amount of flair for yourself the exact details of what you’re wearing don’t matter as much.

5) How much do you spend on shopping for fashion items each month?

Nothing, nil, nada – haven’t bought fashion items in I dunno two years now I think – oh wait I bought some socks a couple of months ago.

6) What kind of shoes do you prefer?

Comfortable, strong/durable, with at least an inch heel or all over sole as I can’t wear flats and with enough ‘give’/bounce to take the weight and not throw it back up through my bones as I’m walking. I’ve never been a stiletto person, though I can tolerate platforms and wedges but I really prefer curved soles on a good study shoe which is unlikely to buckle. I have four pairs of shoes, one pair of boots and one pair of slippers; all Black so versatile (not that I really care whether they clash a bit). Always been like that, had a pair of Gold wedges that I loved and wore to death but I find comfortable shoes in my size hard to find and I keep them well.

7) How would you revamp/spice up an outfit?

Accessories are the classic answer and rightly so but I tend to just change hairstyle and/or makeup which I guess are similar or extended versions of accessories, they fall into ‘adornment’ anyway :-). If I was feeling carefree… I’d give the item to Mum and it’d probably come back looking unrecognizable at first, She’s awesome at metamorphasizing/fixing things.

8) Describe you’re dream vacation?

Sailing as leisurely as possible down the Amazon on a small-ish/medium boat and hopefully don’t mess up and end ‘up the river without a paddle!’ That or cruise on a floating island. Then again there’s plenty of interesting places, the Hellhole in W.Virginia, the Great Blue Hole Belize, Bermuda triangle, the black forest… Ok I’ve got it – the natural hot spring baths that cover and overlap on the mountains in Turkey called Pamukkale

 cotton-castle-pamukkale-thermal-springs-baths-turkey

9) What are the goals for you’re blog?

I dunno, it pretty much does what it wants and goes its way, like my hair.

10) If you had the opportunity to interview a celebrity, who would it be?

None, I have an aversion to celebrities in general though not necessarily specifically and of those specifics there’s a few I’d like to get some bloody answers out of though it wouldn’t be a stereotypical interview.

Awardees:

This is a particularly difficult award to pass on because there are so many amazing, interesting and creative fashionists out there who put a lot of effort into their wardrobe and image. Though of course fashion blogs are also about personal style, tips as well as the presentation and weather/lighting permitting (and assuming we wake up with generally decent skin and hair functioning instead of looking like lightening struck us) good photography! I particularly appreciate fbloggers who keep, re-use, upcycle, recycle, donate and thrift clothing and those with an interest in ethical/fairtrade/eco fashion.

Taking fashion photography of oneself also takes an amount of confidence and self-acceptance which doesn’t come naturally to us all. I wasn’t originally into personal photography and absolutely shied away from the camera as well as disposed of pics I came across with me in them lol so the only ones I had were kiddy and annual school photos. Then I was forced into having to get used to taking pics due to a long distance relationship and learned a fair bit realizing I had to send the good with the bad, candid with posed, and different types from grainy webcam to clear daylight. This was before the days of selfies and it’s true to say I still only sent a bunch periodically rather than continuously but I do know how much work goes into taking photos especially ones that you want to keep. So without further ado here are the awarded fashionists for you:

Shaaz at MizShaazStyle – Super hawt and versatile, unusual style with great attention to detail.

Lovely lady at TheFashionHuntress – A nice, cool breath of air style wise – elegant/casual chic.

Mindy at TheGeekySeamstress – A creative and nimble fingered cosplayer, great costumes!

Leah at LeahPereyra – A lady who displays boho, wearable chic very well.

Lovely ladies at IWearMySariwithJeans – Their name says it all really; grand detail effortlessly mixed in, decadent photography.

Dapper dude at WellDressedGeek – He’s well dressed, dapper and puts mood into his photography.

Nadia at ListenGirlfriends – Hard hitting, on point with thought provoking fashion and ethical items in general.

Stephanie at SheisSoEco – Bringing attention to eco fashion and beauty brands and looks lovely doing it.

Katie at ThriftYourHeartOut – The lady loves thrifting, a pro showcasing and styling her finds for others.

Eliseba at DoodlesDoodads – A thrifter with dreams, interesting thoughts and of course style.

My questions for them

1) At what age did you know you were a fashionist, or knew you would be one day? (let alone blog about it!)

2) What’s the no:1 thing f-blogging has taught you about writing/presenting to an audience?

3) Do you machine wash items labeled ‘hand wash’ or ‘dry clean’ only? 😉

4) Do you consider yourself a savvy or impulse buyer, or a bit of both?

5) What is your favourite trend; e.g. neon, colour blocking, monochrome, pattern mixing, leggings, big accessories, socks with sandals!?

6) What is your least liked or just most disliked trend?

7) What are your pet peeves or no:1 pet peeve about fashion, be it the industry or how it impacts society? E.g. ever changing sizing, fast fashion, keeping up with the catwalk etc

8) What’s your favourite thing about your style?

9) What you’re least liked thing about your style that you’d like to change/improve?

10) If you could have helped come up with one of the major fashion innovations/trends in the past, which would it have been?

Then just for a bit of fun

Some oldies but goodies.

Some of my worst styling:

Yeah that jacket never got worn again (and pvc is an environmental no-no)

Yeah that jacket never got worn again (and pvc is an environmental no-no)

Thou shalt not wear puffer jackets (unless ski-ing or it's really cold, again what's up with that fabric?)

Thou shalt not wear puffer jackets (unless skiing or it’s really cold and in the right size! Again what’s up with that fabric?)

This next outfit started out ok and then ETphonehome :-S see sometimes adding accessories and mixing patterns doesn’t work!

Not sure about:

I quite like the idea of wearing t-shirts under blazers but I’m not sure

picture 249

Best:

On the flipside, unfortunately I don’t have pics of what I consider my best outfits but here are some of my faves since starting this blog:

Navy Denim Stripe Jeans Turtle Polo Roll Neck Turtleneck Rollneck

Indian Sari Sequin Skirt Black Retro Halter Top

Ruffle Check Brown Blouse Black Fishtail Skirt

Fashionists and non-fashionists alike we all make faux pas and then at other times it all comes together 🙂

Thanks for the award and for reading 🙂

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OOTD Fancy Friday: Telling It Like It IS

Today’s outfit is also featured in my last post for being an outfit inspired by a quote(s) from a book, you can see the arty/philosophical versions that I made (and actually consider more truthful) HERE as this post features the candids from this virtual reality we live in…

The main part of the outfit is the top which has printed on it the words ‘”And your point is…..” T-shirts for women that take no crap.’ A partial statement that can be a question and/or a demand seeking an explanation, truth, wisdom, enlightenment and/or perhaps a summary. At first I couldn’t remember when I bought this top thinking it sometime between my late teens and early 20’s but then I recalled wearing the other of the pair that I bought during college. So I at least bought it when I was 14-16 (and there’s no bobbles or signs of wear of them – quality or what) from the ever awesome, eclectic, and formerly infamous Camden Town Market(s) (it’s changed a lot since then, having been renovated after the controversial fire). There was a stall there for a short time that only sold these tops though strangely I couldn’t really find many that I was ‘into’ at the time but since they were doing a ‘2 for £10’ deal at the time I bought two. The other says ‘You say I’m a bitch like it’s a bad thing’ yeah… Let’s just say I wear it as an under layer nowadays. That said if it went on and explained the cultural use and background info of why the word is attributed to women as an insult, why many words are feminized and then used as insults and why it’s the word for a female dog being god spelled backwards and where the word ‘god’ comes from I’d probably wear it as an outer layer. The meanings of words like ‘live’ and ‘evil’ only seem like a coincidence or a joke.

For the record I have never intentionally been a stereotypical ‘b’, that doesn’t mean I haven’t acted flippant when I should have been more considerate. The times when I’ve obviously hurt somebody’s feelings carelessly I don’t forget or stop regretting them and I don’t repeat – thankfully they were never unforgivable and I apologized sincerely, tried to make up for it and make them genuinely feel uplifted. I’m not excusing myself, there are plenty of people out there who are nasty pieces of work consistently and think of themselves as good and decent or ‘normal’ and plenty around them who’d call them that too but I ain’t one of them. I bought that top because many people confused me with a ‘popular type’ and the connotations that go with that from being mean, exclusive or what is generally thought of as stupid and even if forced to credit me in any way it was always beneath them, in a jokey way or within a framework of acceptability/believability, others of course went the opposite way and denied and undermined outright not giving a damn about the consequences or because they relished it or to hide their own flaws and/or insecurities. People love to save face. Anyway…

The skirt was a cashback purchase and the hat belongs to mum from I don’t know how many decades ago 🙂 My roots blended in more with Red but the hat was necessary with Blonde for this Red/Black outfit otherwise I’d have looked far more ‘full on’ in the pics though it’s ok in person, on camera it looks very ‘vampy’ and that’s not me or what I aspire to be. That said, the way I wore the hat makes me look a bit like a chauffeur or air steward lol, driving M’Lady around which I would be doing (for mum) if I could drive.

Black Red T-Shirt Long Sleeve Slogan Top Satin Lace Up Goth Skirt Biker Cap Hat

Black Red T-Shirt Long Sleeve Slogan Top Satin Lace Up Goth Skirt Biker Cap Hat

Black Red T-Shirt Long Sleeve Slogan Top Satin Lace Up Goth Skirt Biker Cap Hat

Black Red T-Shirt Long Sleeve Slogan Top Satin Lace Up Goth Skirt Biker Cap Hat

I’ll be back… 😉

To update this post with links/pics of other bloggers I see celebrating Fancy Friday.

Have a Good Day One and All!

Other bloggers celebrating Fancy Friday

Vanessa at Nessbow

What can I say, for someone who has a feel for the alternative and born from a Goddess who does her own thing completely how can I not love this outfit!? I love that sub-style of goth that is fun and cute, not Lolita but still colourful and detailed. This outfit is also somewhat free spirited which I think suits Vanessa very well!

What can I say, how can I not love this outfit!? I love that sub-style of goth that is fun and cute, not Lolita but still colourful and detailed. This outfit is also somewhat free spirited which I think suits Vanessa very well!

Maricel at MyClosetCatalogue

Another cheerful outfit though in another way, very bright and from her post a bold move - a nice way to celebrate Fancy Friday!

Another cheerful outfit though in another way, very bright and from her post a bold move – a nice way to celebrate Fancy Friday. Love the use of light Orange through the outfit!

Camila at TheGeekChickBlog

Mixing tribal print with rustic comfort, an unusual and very interesting combination - fashion forward and of course fancy yet comfy works! I love the glow of the sunshine on her and in combination with the background in her pics.

Mixing tribal print with rustic casual, an unusual and interesting combination – fashion forward and of course fancy yet comfy works! I love the glow of the sunshine on her and in combination with the background in her pics.

Leah at MorningInk

Adorable in her lovely flowery dress made smart but quirky with the satchel and shoes yet edgy with the jacket. I'm likin' her sense of style and pops of colour!

Adorable in her lovely flowery dress made smart but quirky with the satchel and shoes yet edgy with the jacket. I’m likin’ her sense of style with the pops of colour and accessories! Love that necklace!

Smiles all round today with the bloggers featured today, very nice to see and feature for all you readers too! Remember to checkout their blogs for the full posts and the Fancy Friday theme is open to anybody who wants to give it a go!

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OOTD: Fancy Friday – For the love of Polka Dots!

Hola mes amis, viva la Vendredi!  *Waves Friday flag* 😀

(I know that first sentence is a mish mash of languages and the syntax is haywire ^^’ )

Today I’m wearing a mixed outfit where technically the shirt and the vest are not fancy separates, however in essence my outfit reminds me of vintage days gone by and with the blazing bright Red and Yellow combo it makes me feel fancy 🙂

Mum says I remind her of going to the park, balloons, poppies, lollipops, bubblegum, those balls you land in in adventure playgrounds, blowing bubbles, painting, joining up the dots, marbles; childish and whimsical things… As well as a washer woman.

The shirt is probably one of my oldest items of clothing (other than socks) that wasn’t a hand me down or vintage piece – I chose it (to be bought on my behalf) when I was about 12 I think, 11 or 12. Look how big it is! Seriously it didn’t seem big at the time. The vest is a simple separate which was inexpensive anyway but I think I got it for a clearance price approx 4-5 years ago and I got the skirt a little later as a cashback purchase. So bargain all round, as usual!

Red Yellow White Polka Dot Spot Vintage 50s 40s Inspired Pencil Skirt Vest Cami Denim Shirt

Red Yellow White Polka Dot Spot Vintage 50s 40s Inspired Pencil Skirt Vest Cami Denim Shirt

Red Yellow White Polka Dot Spot Vintage 50s 40s Inspired Pencil Skirt Vest Cami Denim Shirt

Red Yellow White Polka Dot Spot Vintage 50s 40s Inspired Pencil Skirt Vest Cami Denim Shirt

I’ll update this page later with links & pics of other bloggers I see celebrating Fancy Friday 🙂

Vanessa at NessBow

I'm totally feelin' Vanessa's comfortable yet complimentary fitted clothes today (having an 'on sync' day :-D ). Yet she made the outfit very fancy and charming with her grandmother's beautiful earrings - love the sentiment and that can definitely make you feel fancy :-)

I’m totally feelin’ Vanessa’s comfortable yet complimentary fitted clothes today (having an ‘on sync’ day 😀 ). Yet she made the outfit very fancy and charming with her grandmother’s beautiful earrings – love the sentiment and that can definitely make you feel fancy 🙂

Shaaz at MizShaazStyle

Another lady with whom I'm sharing a style synchronization today! :-D We both went for bright Yellow in combination with another bright colour and I absolutely love the poses in her post! She can also make jeans/denim fancier than thought possible!

Another lady with whom I’m sharing a style synchronization today! 😀 We both went for bright Yellow in combination with another bright colour and I absolutely love the poses in her post! She can also make jeans fancier than generally thought possible!

Camila at TheGeekChickBlog

Having some neon fun before Spring Break Camila decided to 'go bold or go home' (I remember she said something like that before and I loved it :-D ) Wearing  Red too and framed beautifully with Black - she's lookin' well and truly ready for her holiday!

Having some neon fun before Spring Break Camila decided to ‘go bold or go home’ (I remember she said something like that before and I loved it 😀 ) Wearing Red too and framed beautifully with Black – she’s lookin’ well and truly ready for her holiday!

Maricel at MyClosetCatalogue

Looking very warm weathery today in pastels and floral she's certainly bright with a spring in her step! Loving the kimono and capris combination!

Looking very warm weathery today in pastels and floral she’s certainly bright with a spring in her step! Loving the kimono and capris combination and of course the colours!

Leah at MorningInk

Showing us that lines/pattern, texture and colour can go perfectly hand in hand in harmony with this lovely (and perhaps a bit nautical? :-) ) outfit. It's framed well between the necklace and shoes and considering many women worry about wearing horizontal stripes yet Leah's post shows us that they are great and very feminine on skirts!

Showing us that lines/pattern, texture and colour can go perfectly hand in hand in harmony with this lovely (and perhaps a bit nautical? 🙂 ) outfit. Another eye opener are the horizontal stripes, considering many women worry about wearing them Leah’s post shows us that they are lovely and very feminine on skirts!

AND special mention to…

MAMA 😀 who actually let me take photos of her today whilst she was getting ready heh heh heh 😮 😐 XD

In her twist to the usual business suit with blouse and waistcoat, she transformed it into a going out/dressy suit with corset and accessories (though I didn’t get a pic once she’d straightened her hair and put her blazer back on – she’s way too quick for me.) She’s always been massively into alternative style especially goth and punk.

Mother Goddess Lalita Kali Isis Red Mama

Mother Goddess Lalita Kali Isis Red Mama

Mother Goddess Lalita Kali Isis Red Mama

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OOTD: Fancy Friday Castle Adventures

Howdy ladies, gents, one and all!

So today I’m back in Warwickshire, specifically Warwick and so that gave me some time to wander around, um I mean productively spend at Warwick Castle

This attraction is usually busy and people seem to prefer it to say where I was last week at Kenilworth Castle, perhaps partially because it’s still standing, gives good protection from the weather and they always have events/shows. That said though I find the place interesting – or moreso the grounds interesting – it’s a bit dead to me. Weird? It sounds inversely proportional but I tend to find buildings that have tons of people passing through (as opposed to living in them – then you get sick building syndrome) the less ‘soul’ it has. I prefer Kenilworth even though it’s ruins, I like the exhibition space there and the books available to read (a handful but still interesting). It’s like how I found Sacré-Cœur to have more soul/presence/ambiance to the big, cold, empty Notre-Dame even with its ‘prestigious’ coffins.

On a sidenote – I tried to view the ‘Princess tower’ only to be barred since I’m an adult with no kid companions – ha adults are supposed to be allowed in there to look, it’s not like I wanted to see the kids show, I just wanted to see what they’d done with the place. Humph at the woman on guard with her fancy dress costume and cute Western Euro-doll looking braids!

Anyway – today I’m bright Red and Blue, a more stunning colour combination (though I’m actually wearing Beige and Blue). The last time I posted pics in this combo was HERE and this was one of the pics.

Red 50s Halter Top Blue Sequin Indian Sari Lehenga Lengha Skirt
The blouse actually has Silver pinstripe but it didn’t come out in the pics and I love with wide leg Oatmeal/Beige trousers (found them in mum’s clothes) – great retro style with a nice sash belt. Added my bright Blue coat with it’s retro cut and felt fabric, and voila, what I consider fancy/smart enough for today’s theme though the shirt and trousers really did look better in real life. The pictures really came out crappy.

Beige Oatmeal Wide Leg 70s 80s Retro Pants Trousers Blue Silver Ruffle Blouse Shirt Felt Funnel Jacket

Beige Oatmeal Wide Leg 70s 80s Retro Pants Trousers Blue Silver Ruffle Blouse Shirt Felt Funnel Jacket

Beige Oatmeal Wide Leg 70s 80s Retro Pants Trousers Blue Silver Ruffle Blouse Shirt Felt Funnel Jacket

Beige Oatmeal Wide Leg 70s 80s Retro Pants Trousers Blue Silver Ruffle Blouse Shirt Felt Funnel Jacket

Beige Oatmeal Wide Leg 70s 80s Retro Pants Trousers Blue Silver Ruffle Blouse Shirt Felt Funnel Jacket

Peacock standing on hedge
A real gorgeous-ness here, though it looked kinda weirded out when I stood somewhat close to talk and take a pic. Can’t blame it, since it has to put up with people everyday and even though I didn’t invade its space I may have been a bit closer than most since I’m not scared of featheries and am used to mean birds and angry birds that look exceptionally beautiful, gorgeous, cute, pretty, just out of the salon etc… That’s not to say it was mean or angry lol – just capable since peacocks (parrots, geese, swans etc) are known for being able to defend themselves – good. Anyway I used my zoom, and of course NO FLASH for taking pics of animals up close. They have their right to good health for their eyes regardless of human curiosity and the need to take thousands of pics when visiting places, most of which usually end up in storage and never looked at again.

Other bloggers celebrating Fancy Friday

Shaaz at MizShaazStyle

Black Dress Skirt White Shirt Ruffle Frill Blouse Polka Dot Spot Shoes Wedges

Looking super fabulous in her day-to-night outfit, in classic Black and White, feminine designs and awesome shoes! I love wedges and those are real statement pair!

Maricel at MyClosetCatalogue

Custo Barcelona top chevron pattern skirt hippy retro

Taking mixed prints and patterns to another level whilst keeping the colours in harmony really makes this outfit fun and eye popping in a delightful way!

Camila at TheGeekChickBlog

Black lace shrug bolero White Vest Sun Top Cami Ripped Jeans Denim Heels

Camila went for the ‘perfect outfit’ mixing favourite pieces and styles creating a great blend of cool and feminine with the ripped jeans and lace! (Love those stools!)

Vanessa at NessBow

Tie-dye Hippy Print Pattern Wide Sleeve Bell Top Pants Boho

Vanessa also mixing prints with harmonious colours in a very bohemian look – fun and fancy in a comfortable way! Love the layered tops!

I will update this post with link/pics of other bloggers I see celebrating Fancy Friday 🙂

Viva la Vendredi!