Wednesday, June 29, 2011

White shoes for summer - does not mean bridal!

So we have passed June 21st and by all accounts white shoes are now the norm.

Although having seen Beyonce's platforms at Harrods I do think nude deserves fair consideration but then I saw them the pearly iridescent reminiscent of a wedding do no in fact of the bride. And all I could think was NO don't do it. In this example witnessed this morning the victim had also opted for dark non real looking skin coloured tights and wait for it crossing ankle straps. Nothing says wurstchen (german for small sausage) like tight, skin cutting, leg shortening ankle straps.

So what is one to do? How to help the victim in question because self recognition isn't working? Approaching the matter head on - tricky after fashion, style and taste are unique to oneself. Just because I am mortified doesn't mean she doesn't love it.

So you dear fashion friend reading this you are my outlet. Thank you for letting me vent - I needed that.
And for now let's agree they only thing that should be pearly white are your teeth ;-)


Sunday, June 26, 2011

Finding the one

It may seem like a unimportant search but asking any woman around and she will tell you it is a life long struggle - finding the perfect hairstylist or hairdresser.

Whether its not being able to agree on what colour approach to take or what just a few centimeters off the end means or experience with curly hair really is cutting more than once in a lifetime somehow it can be really tricky finding your perfect match - the one.

I have had hairdressers where I asked for a strawberry blonde glow to my hair only to leave having flame red in my opinion stoplight red hair. Not a look I can recommend. Or asking for goldhighlights all over and having two or three to frame my face only to ask the hair salon owner why there was this limited amout of highlights for her to reply because that's what I want. Needless to say I went home and did the highlights myself. Also not an approach I can recommend.

To me alot of it is communication. Bring a picture - not because you want to look like Gisele but because in your opinion that is golden beachy blonde - it helps to speak the same language with your stylist. Be honest if you have a deep rooted hatred for a bob with elegonated points at the front (think VB lob) than tell him or her if you dont you might end up leaving the salon unhappy something that could have easily been taken care of.

Recently I went to my old salon in London nothing too posh but somewhere they do listen and do take different approaches to colour. Even there I looked in the mirror and said wow its darker than had expected but my stylist warned me and asked me to be a little patient - wait for the colour to settle and then if unhappy we can change it. That gave me the confidence to wait it out - be patient even if I did know 'fi'xing' it wasnt an option (I mean bad enough to tell people that I got my hair done in London it would be so much worse to say I had to fly back to have it fixed) so I did what is the ultimate tip in hairdressing - I trusted my stylist. And sure enough the colour is fantastic now. I love it!

So ladies - be honest - talk about what you want and find someone you trust and you will have found the one!

Now hang on to them - happy hairdays await!


Saturday, June 25, 2011

Glamping - really?

Everyone has them those dreaded words that just send shivers down your spine. Mine is camping. I never did it as a child or in teenage years so what the appeal is - is truly beyond me. The idea of having to sleep on the cold near ground, in a potentially damp sleeping bag with the likeliness that bugs or even wilder animals could come knocking freaks me out but the loo and shower situation is to me the worst. I just dont get it when a perfectly good b&b or hotel is usually around the corner where the investement of a good nights sleep is so worth the opportunity cost calculation.

But then a new word appeared on the horizon that just puzzles me... glamping. Really? Is it possible? Glamorous camping. Isnt that impossible to imply in the same word? I mean it still involves a tent. I did a quick google search a sure enough the word is everywhere. From the UK to France to even rural Holland - camp grounds are offering the idea of luxury camping.

Source: Camp Kerala
Even for mud-drench Glasto at the bargain price of 8.000 pounds you can do the hip festival experience in luxury. I needed to know more and I will admit it - on the website I am astonished. It looks heavenly - all white - from the tents to the duvets even to the residential dog. Ohhh lovely. But then reality sets in - it is Glasto. How does it stay white? Where are the loo's and showers? Is this just a mirage and it is still is porterpotty in reality. Still if one had to do the festival tour this has to be the way to do it.

But then I get to thinking camping - how does one dress for it. Obiously you cant roll in with your mongramed luggage cases so if camping means rucksacks what is glamping? And I repeat what does one wear? I cant do the Mossy approach to festival chic. Even for work I plan my wardrobe choices so if the idea of mud, ground and yuckiness comes into play I have no idea how to work it. Something I proved yesterday too. Outdoors day with work - and honestly I had nothing to wear so I ended up in uncomfortable trousers that keeping falling down given, ballet slippers that while cute I was cold and a plaid shirt (nothing says country like plaid) with the army inspired jacket wasnt what I would call convincing. So upon returning home that much needed glass of red and a hot bath were too lovely.

Conclusion - the outdoorsy country feel is alright for some but for me - I need a bath, wine and above all a hotel.


Dutch thinking... nightmare

Don't get me wrong I love the diversity of Holland, the people, the countryside, the beaches even shock dare I say the weather sometimes but these are also all the things I hate about Holland too. Particularly though the country has yet to grasp the concept of client services. I understand that using the US example is stretching it and may on occasion seem OTT but a complete lack of regard similar to the Parisian model where you have to be a bitch to get any service full stop is in my opinion the wrong approach as well.

So here I am stuck in front of a computer trying to buy a wedding present. I did leave it a little late but I had tried 2 weeks ago with no luck on the website front and thought armed with really mission like percision this time I would get there - in and out pressie bought happy couple in the make. Or so I thought.

I think with the amount of weddings attended in various countries I am an experienced wedding list shopper. But this has to be the most difficult experience so far.

First of all they hide the wedding list section so far under the layers of the website this in itself is saying 'you would be a fool to use this service'. If by miracle efforts you do find the location you need two bits of vital information the bride and/or grooms surname (check I know this) and the wedding date (hang on is this the civil service date or the church service or does it matter or help I feel this going wrong...) Thankfully I have both bits of date so I try a variation of options. Surname spelled together apart, civil service date, church service date NOTHING works. Ok keep clam there is always a customer service number to dial oh wait you have to know the location of the shop the couple registered with. Sorry what do I need? How on earth would I happen to have this info? Really? But I am reasonably committed to getting this sorted (it's a mission remember) so I ring anyway and make an edcuated guess. Oh no no one at the department to be reached - could it be that this is because it's a Saturday and they only attempted to help people on a week day? What do now? Abort mission? Retreat and rethink? Call customer service again? Then I have a bit of tour of the  website - it is great in the way that is does provide information in English but hang on if you are calling from abroad you're stuck - no access to the number (is this a clever way of punishing you for leaving the glorious Dutch soil?) and if you would again by divine intervention reach the wedding list you would have to guess your way around it because that bit of the service is in Dutch. But then a crystal bonbon tray is a crystal bonbon in any language... ok last attempt ring customer service AGAIN and enquire if maybe the department isnt reachable on a Saturday - bless the silly receptionist student who only has the cleverness to say - I do believe the department is closed today. Really sherlock - great help there. You think? All I can say I hope my fury doesn't where off by Monday. As when Monday rolls around - hell hath no fury like a woman wanting to shop!!!!!


Monday, June 13, 2011

So what is it about Weddings?

So I will admit it I am nervous - in fact shaking in my boots (if it were winter & I was wearing boots). I have a wedding to attend in 3 weeks time and I am no where near as firm, toned and lovely as I would like to be. PANIC!!!

So I have to get on the programme double time, super quick. Now if anyone knows of a miracle product that will not only make me skinny and toned but also 20 centimeters taller - call me!

Should that all fail I will have to do it myself but alert to all friends I will be grumpy at the lack of carbs and worse my much needed rescue after a horrific work week a glass of wine. But what has to be done has to be done.

But why - why the sudden panic. I am not the one getting married all eyes will not be on me. So why the worry. Is it that a wedding it normal girl's version of the Met Ball? An event to impress or is it the worry that people will gossip and judge which tends to be human nature at a big gathering? Or is the worry of being in a large group and being referred to as the funny fat one? Or maybe the knowledge that whatever you look like will be captured on film for others to enjoy for years to come. Right not sure how these thoughts are helping me right now. Well there's no time to dwell in sadness but rather to kick my Texas size bum in gear and improve things so that even with some toning, weight loss and fake tan I can master the idea of faking it until you make it.

My question is do we all stress this much about weddings? I mean I have only touched on the superficial aspects but then there is the fun of family weddings when people ask you - so dear why arent you married yet? Anyone special in your life? These family members could just as easily be complete strangers because they hardly know the true me so it is rather odd to open up to them. So back to the idea of faking it until you make it. I have a great slendering maxi dress for the party and a lovely reception outfit that will just be appropriate so all in all I think I can pull it off and just to sure there is still enough me to give me a secret extra confidence for the day itself.

So for now - try to get sleek, slim and sexy with some secret confidence - fingers crossed all goes to plan...


June Lusting

Last weekend I spent in London and it was heavenly. Went to my trusted all hairdresser (thank you Andrew @ Headmaster Putney) - maybe not glam but ever so good. Had my nails done - so nice not to hear someone say are you sure you want these shorter. Followed by river side lunch with a glass of wine in the sunshine. Met up with my darling friends for dinner at my favourite spots: Eight over Eight - Kings Road, followed by champagne at Amuse Bouche - Parsons Green Lane and girlie lunch at Manicomio - Kings Road and drinks at the Bluebird plus an amazing long boozy girlie lunch at Brinkley's on Hollywood Road where even after being away for 2 years I am still greeted as a dear friends (thank you Yanis - hope I spelled that correctly)

But I did also so a bit of shopping and I have found a new love. Austique  on the Kings Road is a fab shop to carrying my favourite Superga trainers to groovy dresses and jeans but also to die for jewellery.

And here it is my new lust objection.
Sydney Evens jewellery. (All images courtesy of and can be purchased online) Dainty jewellery in white gold, yellow gold and rose gold. With precious stones so incredibly lovely I will be saving up for these!


Reality TV- really?

A while ago I had a random conversation with a 21 year old girl who had two missions in life: 1) live in Manhattan and find a weathly prince charming (need to note: that London wasn't an option as she had experience the WAG lifestyle in Liverpool so that was the UK done by her - I was shocked at how cruel life could be to my beloved city - but she obviously hadn't been to the best places) and 2) have her own reality TV series.

It got me thinking when did the world change? I understand that celebrities and the lifestyle that goes with it has been enchanting for years but the big reality TV boom has seemed to make it possible for wannabes, teen moms, formly fat people, c list celebrities to invent or re-invent themselves or shock horror actually build a career out of it. Think Kardashians and see how with a clever business sense you can rule the world.

I will admit that I too at my old age indulge in the reality TV hype - even if I am not in the age demographic for that specific programme. I had my own 2 mins of fame in MTV The Real World London - where all I did was giggle (such camera pressence not) and dance to later dubbed music that made my dance moves more resemble dad dancing (thanks MTV). But that was just a taste. The real interest kicked in much later, it all started by being stuck in a US hotel room. I was intrigued by programmes like 'My Super Sweet 16' (we moved out of the US before I could experience the thrill of driving my parents mad with the need for a super deluxe car, fabulous party - ideally with vast amounts of photographs of me looking ever so seductive at 16 naturally and the must have all ruling performer) and 'Laguna Beach'. Shortly after with the introduction of 'The Hills' I was hooked. I knew it wasn't real but I loved the atmosphere - the clothes, the bags, the drama and that only spread to 'The City' where the fashion is inspiring. I will admit it I think Olivia Palermo is a fashion asset and misrepresented in the ever so slightly scripted programme. But then came the Kardash franchise that just keeps spreading and I marvel at how far they have come. Let alone how far TV has come. I mean now if programmes like 'Jersey Shore' can lead to endorsement deals and other spin-offs that all feed into our need to see how the other half lives. Well who can blame young people of today thinking that this is the way to quick success. Here in the Netherlands TV makers have tried their hand at the formula only to realise the batter doesnt quite stick if you translate the ingredients. It is like a souffle that wont rise - sad but cut your loses and stick what your good at.

So I wander can reality TV inspire other ambitions that the quick rich plan. Recently Bethanny Frankel of the Real Housewives franchise (New York flavour) admitted her reason for joining the programme was entreprenurial. And good for her! Was it really so hard to admit that the business side is a real reason behind all these programmes that keep popping up. And be honest if you are going to open up your dirty laundry for the world to see - you might as well get something out of it yourselves!

So all those dreaming of celebrity I hope you have the goods to make and the right management to help get all there is to get out of it. But do consider other career options too - after all in the words of Heidi Klum - one minute you're in, one minute you're out...


Bag Envy - Which Handbag to choose?

I am sure we have all heard that we women dont really dress for men but we do it for other women. It is our way of impressing the competition and maybe in one way or another unsettling the competition as a way of leveraging this to balance the scales our way. So in the attempt to impress other women with our incredible yet unattainable sense of style we know that we can always rely on our trusted weapons - bags and shoes. Really when you spell it all out this clearly it seems a little strange that men still don't understand our need for shoes and bags.

With handbags being such a part of our armour - after all they will never make you look fat - it is only a matter of time before we girls start scanning other women's handbags and becoming every more jealous. I call it bag-envy and let's be honest I am sure we have all had a case of this rather contagious illness. You see another woman on the street and catch a glimpse of her amazing bag and realise there is a 3 year waiting list and then there it is bag envy. Apparently men are catching on this, they now can spot the one woman checking the handbag on the other woman out. And it is not pretty. So now as more and more women are becoming aware of special brands in the handbagging craft it seems that there is more ground to be envious of.

But dont worry just because some other girl is jealous of your handbag it is really a compliment to your taste and your own style.

Hermes Birkin Bag Source:

Choosing the right handbag can be tricky - are the handles the right length - nothing looks more cheap than too long handles - is the leather soft  - is the colour warm and rich full of depth - is it overtly branded (if that is what you are looking for) or subtle that only the insiders recognise. The wonderful thing for all us women is the variety of choices available out there. So much more than just shoulder, clutch or arm bag - think tote, hold-all, oversized, small, cross-body, chain link, embellished, canvas, leather, fabric, suede, metallic, neon, oh my. So many options picking that one that is for you might just be impossible. So embrace the right to choose and choose often for every reason you can think of.

And when you do get those envious stares and glares - enjoy it - you obviously made the right choice!