Friday, 21 December 2007

I maybe gone for some time...

A Very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
Up at 5am tomorrow, I am taking the laptop but will not risk posting if I think He's watching me. Thank you to everyone for all this years lovely comments, I hope you ALL have a fab break, and remember, It can only get lighter!

Something old something new

Something old, On the left my beloved DKNY(men's) totally shredded fit only for the garden. Middle, my wonderful boots totally the wrong height, cut my calf in two but so comfortable. Finally sturdy Ecco comfy but my toe rests an inch from the top so I probably look like a clown.

On the left words cannot express what a joy these are to wear. In the middle again just so comfortable if a dodgy height. On the right new DKNY (men's) ginky but comfy.
I realise all my winter shoes are black, in the shed sit a wonderful brown lace up pair of boots and a pair of Camper boots but, and here's the tricky part, I hate brown shoes with a black coat, oh and my bag is black, so what do you do? buy more coats probably, but the last time I tried swapping a coat midweek I left my travel card in the pocket and so missed my train. So one coat it is and black all the way. In stark contrast my feet would put a peacock to shame in the summer.
P.S Mum bought the first and second pair of shoes bless her, she always sends me a cheque for Xmas and B'days which I always loose so she marched me to some amazing shoe shop in Oxfords covered market and bingo not one but two strikes. I will just look at them for a couple of weeks before I break them in. If anyone has read previous posts any shoes that fit are a miracle, not only do I have big feet but they are wide and the one on the left so damaged I can only cross train for 10Min's before it goes totally numb. I do not really know why other countries embrace the bigger foot and English shoe manufacturers don't. I shopped in Hobbs a lot in my 20s but after Daisy was born I went from a size 7 to a size 8, the look of disgust on the assistants face when I requested an 8 was visible and I was told "VERY few styles EVER went up to THAT size" So I never went back there again. Another shop with the same attitude is Sole Trader there I was told "women's shoes stop at a 6" again another one off the list. So to find a shop so sympathetic to my needs is a total joy and will get all my cash, OK my mums..

Thursday, 20 December 2007


Finally I have solved the mystery, we have not had our usual high standard of Internet access because.....Daisy hoovered, ripped out the cord and then wondered why she could not spend the rest of the evening glued to MSN. I also have a stinking cold that wakes me up in the night like a kind of slow torture. I did however manage to haul my sorry little carcass around Bluewater for a couple of hours. The trick with a monolith like this is planning, get in early, focus on a few shops then when 12 o'clock strikes run like hell or you will be trapped forever circling, barely able to remember your name. Substantial damage was inflicted on my finances but I figure it is better to buy exactly what you need, not what is cheap and left hanging. Well that's what I keep telling myself. So I bought on recommendation from The thoughtful dresser some Chanel foundation, I haven't worn foundation for years but it looks good and feels good lets home I can look 10 years younger as well. Second purchase was warm undies because it is -5! in Prague so that was £100 for a few bits of thermal. Third treat was two winter skirts one black one grey both lovely, when I'm really cold I prefer wool tights and skirt over trousers and socks I hate long johns they feel like a nappy. So I'm good to go. Finally another pair of shoes/ trainers I have had my last pair for so long they wore through the sole, so comfortable were they, so time willing I am posting some photos tomorrow of my bumper crop of shoes as well as packing, driving the girls to their dads, cleaning, tidying, changing the beds etc, etc, etc

Wednesday, 19 December 2007

Today I made

Some people suck their thumbs, some people smoke, but to calm myself down I bead. Today I hurriedly knocked up some earrings for a friend as a Christmas present, I liked them so much I made myself some and a matching necklace.

Today I wore

I know the English do nothing but gripe about the weather, it is part of our genetic make up to do so. But it truly it is bloody freezing at the moment hence not one but two scarves

My favourite pearl necklace and cosy grey sweater, although whenever my mother sees me wear something like this she shudders at the thought of so much exposed sternum. Today is officially the last day at work although I have told Emin that I break up tomorrow, the house is such a mess and he is such a bore I would rather be anywhere but home. The loft goes on and on partly/mainly because he bought the wrong tiles that are taking FOREVER to fit and being marble they crack and so we are on our 3rd extra set of tiles. So sour is the atmosphere in our house that Daisy has decided to be oh so grown up and go and live with her Nan. She told me I was the best Mum in the world but nothing would induce her to tolerate any more of Emin's moods so that was a lovely Christmas present. I am stuck between a rock and a hard place because I feel Leyla is too young to be left by me to set up house with just Daisy and Kitty, so we shall see how she likes her super early mornings and her super extra long journey and no mother to tap for money every 5 seconds.

Tuesday, 18 December 2007

Today I wore

Well it is the staff Christmas dinner.

Oh to be a man!

When did the men of London become so well dressed? Travelling on the underground last week (which was too packed to read on) my eyes perused the carriage and counted no less than eight men wearing lovely tweed/Loden style coats accessorised with a stripy wool scarf. I have often hankered after a stripy scarf like the ones you see in gentleman outfitters on Jermyn St and I’ve always preferred men’s coats to women’s, primarily because the shoulder is cut more generously often with a raglan sleeve. I have said before my shoulders are on the large size and I feel restricted in most women’s coats. Men also have nicer fabrics, I love the textures and colours of men’s coats moss greens, deep navy, rich mustard, women tend to get on trend colours that either show the dirt after two outings or black. When I was younger I used to wear a coat I stole from my Granddad, it was a rich blue/grey tweed with wonderful plaited leather buttons sadly there comes a time when men’s clothes make you look like a man, unless you are super pretty/petite so those days are over. Yesterday Emin declared he was going to buy me a new coat as he hates the one I wear, I think its lovely, a black ¾ length A line black cashmere, with my favourite sleeves still never say no to a free lunch and as we are visiting the country of the coat, Germany (never have I seen so many wonderful coats than on the backs of Germans) I wont say no.

Monday, 17 December 2007

Christmas dinner No1

Christmas dinner Oxford style, very cosy in mums house as she has an open fire, we all got lots of lovely pressies including new shoes for me, (photos tomorrow) I now have a cold and sore throat which serves me right for feeling smug when everyone else was ill last week

The wasp song

On Friday whilst bopping to the tunes of The Kaiser Chiefs one of our party nudged me and pointed to the man standing in front of us he was at least 6 foot 7 inches so a bit of an irritant view wise, however the reason for the nudge was she had seen a wasp crawling into the inside collar of his jacket. As Earls court was not an obvious place for a wasp I stepped up to take a closer look and during the break between songs I tapped him on the shoulder to tell him a wasp was crawling inside the collar of his jacket (its the teacher in me) He looked at me in total disbelief and quickly took of his jacket and threw it on the ground. It was my turn to look at him with disbelief as I saw he was wearing a girly tour T shirt. He looked really pissed of and asked if I was playing a trick on him, meanwhile my entire party had disowned me So I shouted that yes I was sure 2 of us had seen it, he then told us he was allergic to wasp stings so I searched the jacket but found no evidence of the wasp. I shrugged said sorry and stepped back he stomped off to the toilet we think to strip and make sure. He obviously thought we had made it up to get him to move and yes it did work, then 10 mins later he was back and seemed happy enough. another friend said she too had seen the wasp (thanks for the moral support) so I figured I had saved a life. another friend( male) suggested that I could use the same tactic on some of the other taller men or better still some of the younger women who he felt would be equally eager to whip off their clothes! All this happened during a new song which I missed and will forever be known as the wasp song.

Friday, 14 December 2007

Today I wore

A bit shaky but as you may see I chopped up the Romany and rejigged it, with some spare for another design.

The new block is still very cold so I pile on the layers and go for comfort hence the velvet combats and an oriental trim cardie.
I am out tonight and then onto Oxford for a home cooked Christmas dinner this weekend, so I am escaping the decorating, yeah. The sad bit for me is my kitchen fairy has gone back home to Turkey for 3 weeks, so its not all fun fun fun.. till next Saturday of course

Before and after

After with the coral looks so much better

I made this necklace as one of mums Christmas presents, but it looked a little dull so out came the scissors...

Thursday, 13 December 2007

Kaiser Chiefs

I will be the oldest swinger in town watching these boys from Leeds at Earls Court tomorrow night

Festive jewellery

Axel Russmeyer The photo does not do it justice it sparkles more.

Love the whimsy of these pieces
I saw both at Electrum on South Molton St, I did manage to do a little bit of Christmas shopping, but preferred the galleries

Sonia Delaunay This was brilliant too

David Gentleman This exhibition is on at the Fine Arts Society a really beautiful traditional gallery with open fires and antiques. The David Gentleman exhibition was lovely too.
All this was in stark contrast to the Michael Craig Martin exhibition at the Gagosian a gallery situated in a particularly unlovely part of London, despite the regeneration Kings Cross still looks very grim to me. I spent many hours here after moving to London waiting for trains back to York. However the gallery was amazing an enormous space fabulously lit. The work was worth the trek, sadly no guerrilla style photo's as the the security cameras covered all angles, and some.

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Today I wore

I made this necklace yesterday and test drove it today, a tad Romany for me I think but I may give it one last chance. I have spent the grimmest day sitting doing a departmental self evaluation whilst getting some of THE naughtiest girls to sit and draw for 5 whole hours, did they stop trying to be naughty? no not for long but its over and so is the worst of the self assessment. Galleries tomorrow yeah and some Christmas shopping fine except its SO cold.

Maurizio Pecoraro

Having lusted after the silver jacket I decided to check out his spring/summer collection and more objects of beauty appeared, I especially liked the homage to Rothko dresses.

Karen Neale Karen is currently exhibiting her work in Spitlalfields market so I shall drop by on my way back from the Michael Craig Martin, I'm always a sucker for a view of London.

Tuesday, 11 December 2007

Today I wore

I made the charm necklace and as this is velvet week it is pointless photographing the trousers but this is one of my favourite tops, a lovely green silk knit, it hides a multitude of sins!

Reality check

"I’m not saying that I’m the greatest prize out there, but at least I’d put on a clean shirt, shaved and brushed my teeth. Sophie tumbled into the house looking like a refugee from Hurricane Katrina. She smelt like the R&D lab at Philip Morris. Her outfit was about as sexy as a half-pound of ground meat. And, surely, the only time she’d seen the inside of a gym was to ask directions to the nearest pub. I was hurt that my friends thought I’d be remotely interested in Sophie. Even more insulting was when my friend’s wife pointedly said: “Tad, I hear you just sold a screenplay to the producers of My Big Fat Greek Wedding.” I could not believe it. She was selling ME to HER!? I sat there watching Sophie tuck into a second huge plate of shepherd’s pie and realised why no self-respecting American girl consumes carbohydrates after 2pm. I’m not surprised Sophie was having trouble finding a boyfriend. Regardless of whether she was interested in me or not, she was unwittingly sabotaging her own chances with any man. "
Have you ever read anything more cruel and, more importantly so clumsily written? (this blog excepted)
and then this
Are these some of the worst examples of slightly muddled over generalisations you will ever hope to read? I suspect so, but worse they are both from the Times not a red top where they belong.
In answer to the former article, a man so swayed by the shallowness of looks deserves to remain single and childless for the rest of his life because if that's what he thinks is important in life what signal would he ever send to his children.
As for the latter, again, too over sensationalised "The days of smoking behind the bike shed to indicate your free and rebellious spirit are long gone – today’s young rebel is more likely to be swallowing cotton wool and tracing shapes on herself with a penknife, ably assisted by a culture that sometimes actively encourages such self-destruction."
I teach a broad cross section of girls and this is not the case, they obsess about hair and music and clothes, most just want to eat because the appetite of a teenager is rarely satiated. A few over indulge or at the other extreme don't, but this is not because their mothers obsess about food, its much more a reflection of deeper issues within the fabric of the child and the family.
In my experience my mother and her sister both worried constantly about their weight all that concerned me was finding and eating food, their concerns had little or no impact on my desire for food. I have tried never to raise the "D" word at home but I will not hesitate to preach about healthy eating and to eat all things in moderation. I think before people make such generalisations about children they should maybe talk to more than just a handful of relations and friends siblings.

Velevt Week

I recently went to Uniglo to marvel at the pantone cashmere as anyone who reads this blog will know I loose all sense of financial reality around cashmere, my fingers really twitched around the dark grey marl, so tempting, on my right shoulder the devil in me is screaming "buy buy". On my left shoulder the angel in me (very small) screamed "step away from the cashmere you have too much grey". I would like to say that self control won the day, but it didn't, size and fit did, this lovely knitwear is cut skinny and straight which does not sit well on my middle aged spread. I did also try on a Shetland wool dress that was lovely but would have been too warm sans coat on the frozen tundra. Sadly I fell flat on my face financially in jigsaw buying a delicious turquoise thermal cardie and a hook and eye fastening down the back cardie.
I realised on Sunday with a start that we are nearly a third of the way through the Velvet season and I haven't worn any yet so this week is officially velvet week.

The view from here pt3

Well the view for my year 11 exam class, they are making a personal response to Cezanne via a shaded pencil drawing. I have just told them if I catch one more student smudging her shading with her finger I will chop them off.

The view from here pt2

I got this abstract beauty from a sink in my class room it is rarely used and has no working hot tap hence the gloopy mess, so I had some fun creating abstract compositions from the chaos of colour.

The view from here

As my early morning train chuntered into the medway wastelands I looked up from my paper to see this stunning sunrise.

Monday, 10 December 2007

Maurizio Pecoraro

Via Kingdom of Style a jacket of such immaculate beauty I just had to have it on my blog too.

Vogue Korea These pictures are from Korean Vogue via All Things bright and Beautiful via Kim Carney, thank you to both. I love the Hanbok My father lived in Korea for a while and managed to buy Kitty one when she was little. I still have it and use it for students to draw. They are not cheap to buy or very easy to find as I found out when I went to visit. I would have liked one, I would like a kimono as well but they are also very expensive, when I was young my parents had Japanese students to stay, I fell in love with them all they were so kind and patient I was able to dress up in their Kimonos but could not keep them as they said the cost to their parents for them was so great. These photos are so beautiful I wish both the Korean Vogue and the Japanese Vogue would drop the western features and use more images based on their own culture which the Chinese Vogue manages to do.

Violise Lunn I love paper dresses, this is a lovely site to check out.


Alison Evans

Grace Girvan

Naoko Yoshizawa Lots of lovely Jewellery to look at here

Saturday, 8 December 2007

Shiney New Year pt2

Testing Christmas card ideas via the net

One of the only benefits of taking the dog for a walk at this time of year is being able to vicariously celebrate Christmas via the decorations of other houses. Most places round here slap a 7 foot tree into the bay window and a wreath on the door so it all looks very festive and I love looking into peoples living rooms. I remember as a child driving back from Christmas at my Grans and doing the same thing, trying to imagine that behind each tree was another family celebration, Its like looking at stars, you can start to feel quite small.

Have a Shiny New Year

I am experimenting with Christmas card ideas this is one idea the next post is the second.


The very beautiful Hermes shop window surprisingly understated, I love the Iconic orange boxes don't think one will be winging its way to me this Christmas somehow.

Charles Chang Lima

Ive told you to visit this site before but hey, nothing wrong with repeating myself
Charles Chang Lima via still a brilliant magazine.

The Sartorialist

Scott finally gets the recognition he deserves, yeah