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Monday, April 30, 2007
To the style-mobile!

As much as I occasionally like being fashionable and participating in certain trends (tulip skirts, platforms, and the art of draping), I have lately felt drawn to the opposite of what is in vogue. I'm sick of seeing girls wearing bloody tunics and smocks everywhere, I'm sick of too-skinny jeans, I'm beginning to despise leggings and I wish Kate-bloody-Moss would just disappear. Topshop happens to be the only vaguely decent place to shop in Lancs...and the vintage hall, to get to civilisation you have to go to Manchester. They have some great shops in Manchester, so even if I don't want to buy anything/am totally broke, I can just be around clothes that haven't been designed with Kate Moss wannabes in mind. I am returning home mid-June, and one of the first things I am doing, is going to the mothership; Uniqlo. Uniqlo can be described with one word; perfection. You can mould classic designs to your own style instead of looking all sheep-like. You're probably thinking that it's simple to be indivdual, but for me, when clothes have endless patterns and designs on them, it's no good. I don't mind the occasional design or motif, but it's the frenzied art attack style prints which make me lose it. I'd like to see people who are inspired to wear clothing which represents them as opposed to just mindlessly copying everything they see celebrities wear because they think it's cool. Am I reaching for the stars?
Uniqlo says no. And I believe them.

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Monday, April 23, 2007
Back to Black.

Only 180 days to go until winter is upon us. While I'm the kind of girl who loves summer, I'm not the kind of girl who enjoys wearing summer clothes. I like to wear tights, long socks and winter coats as long as humanly possible. I love winter clothes. There's just something about summer clothes which just doesn't appeal to me, it might be because I always end up feeling like I've given up style in favour of practicality because it gets too hot, and I can't bothered anymore.

Getting me through this summer, and excited for winter are this lot. Make sure you check out Giambattista Valli's shoes, they are brilliant! House of Dagmar's print knits with emerald giant sequins caught my eye too, as did Veronique Leroy's winter coats with gloves, and Rick Owens gorgeous heavy leather-sheepskin aviator jackets.

Rick Owens

Veronique Leroy


House of Dagmar

Giambattista Valli

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Thursday, April 19, 2007
Girl crush.

I always find it hard finding famous people who have style, AND an attitude I admire, because it seems like there's a complete over-saturation in A-list Land of people who may have style but no substance, which means that whenever they open their mouth, you feel like grabbing a roll of duct tape and sealing it shut (See Scarlett run).
Besides being an incredible actress and singer, the divine Charlotte Gainsbourg has a unique beauty and style which is genuinely covetable.
I could write more, but really what you should do is watch her films, listen to her music, and fall in love with her yourself.

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Monday, April 16, 2007
Varying degrees of (a)pathetic.

Googling is addictive. Until I was 8, I used to live in Nairobi, I led a sheltered existance; private school, ballet classes, piano lessons (which I was told to give up because my fingers were too fat)but major upheavals (remember, I was 8) came when my parents separated suddenly, and I moved to England with my sister and mum, leaving behind all my friends, and most importantly, W. - who was the love of my life (age 5-8). If you see my class photos, I'm the dorky one looking up at the boy next to me, instead of the camera. So, when I embarked on my 'old schoolfriend Googling spree,' he was the one I started with.

And guess what? W. lived about three-quarters of an hour away from me since he was 13. Yeah. He got a scholarship when finishing at a snooty school in Surrey, where they sail and share 'tuck' with boys nicknamed Pongo. And now he goes to Oxford University. He's an over-achiever. I should have known. Samuel, who I hated because used to be completely ridiculous also got a scholarship...and an afro. He still looks stupid. The only one I can't find is Lindsay. She was this annoying, prissy American girl who did everything just perfectly...and all I can find is a minor baseball player with that name. Maybe she had a sex change. That would be too good to be true. Except that would make her/him/it a professional baseball player aged 18, which makes her/him/it a sporting overachiever. I might just spread rumours that she did have a sex change. Maybe I'm an overachiever at being vicious. I sure hope so.

It's funny though, that in the end, I don't really want to talk to them, or see them ever again. I hate reunions, I'd much rather see their lives on a screen so I don't have to make endless, pointless conversation which I know will end in "we must keep in touch." I still care though. That's a bit irritating.

EDIT: I found her! I found Lindsay! She was a prefect. I knew it. I can't believe it, she had the same hairstyle in 2005 as she did in 1995, but seems to have no other overachieving qualities. Ahhhh, breathe easy Meg, breathe easy.

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Thursday, April 12, 2007
I Heart Mrs Mills.

Mrs Mills is an advice columnist for the Sunday Times Style Magazine. Some say she is Martha Stewart's doppelganger, other's say she is really A.A.Gill, I know her only as my dream woman. Every Sunday, I'll snatch up the Style magazine first and go straight to the last page where I'll cackle over Mrs Mills' advice - toast in hand - loving the way Mrs Mills efficiently solves the problems of three lucky readers with wit, and occasional bitchiness. She is my hero.

My wife and I have been invited to a friend’s 40th-birthday party. It’s fancy dress, and the theme is fetish. I am slightly shocked that such a theme would be considered acceptable in our quiet, rural village. Should I ignore the theme and go as a policeman to keep my dignity, or throw caution to the wind and go as a gagged, rubber-clad bondage slave? If you advise the latter, where can I acquire a suitable outfit?
AZ, Swindon
All these sexually themed parties are very tiresome. Far more original would be to construct an armour-like outfit out of blocks of polystyrene and maintain that you misheard and have come as a lump of feta.

I recently travelled in a plane that had two seats between three armrests. The oversized man in the aisle seat said two rests were his and one mine, as I had the window view. Is that right?
JK, Durham
No, it’s not right. You have been a victim of the arrogance of fat people. This is the attitude that makes them always take the larger helping and demand seconds. Of course, they regard themselves as victims of a cruel world that insists on manufacturing clothes in unusually small sizes and shrinking aeroplane seats to narrow dimensions. Your consolation is that you don’t break out in a sweat every time you stand up from a chair.

I am a 24-year-old secretary. On an almost weekly basis, I drop hairgrips into the office photocopier so I can call out the repair guy, who happens to be very fit and appears to enjoy flirting with me. The problem is, when he bends over to work on the photocopier, it is quite obvious that he has a hairy back. How can I persuade him to remove his unsightly fur before I ask him out on a date?
KW, by e-mail
Rather than a hairgrip, jam the copier with a clump of hair. You can then bring up the subject of hairiness and innocently reveal your aversion to hirsute rears. Then again, given your reckless disregard for other people’s property, you might consider just swooping on him with a razor the next time he bends down.

I work in the fickle world of international finance. After I had been in the office until 1am one night, my boss asked me to hastily compose a presentation the next day. I put a chocolate penguin (from a top Bond Street chocolatier) on his desk with the documents. After he left, I found the penguin, still in its transparent box, forcibly thrown into the bin. There was no doubt that he knew who it was from. Should I tell him I know what he did (by the way, I have now eaten the evidence), or should I say nothing and let it pass?
LT, London

There could be far more to this than meets the eye. After all, if I read my Dan Brown correctly, the penguin is the ancient symbol of the Brotherhood of Knights Rampanter, a sinister order devoted to the restoration of the Plantagenet line to the throne, the forcible removal of Scotland from the Union and the promotion of Norwich as one of the world’s financial capitals (which, of course, is what would have unnerved your boss). Then again, perhaps he’s just watching his waistline.

My girlfriend and I have been invited to a glamorous weekend house party. However, it looks as if we will have to turn it down because we can’t take my girlfriend’s shih tzu, as the hosts have various cats and large dogs that they will insist are incompatible with our little chap. Everyone says to put him in kennels, but he was traumatised almost to death when we did that in the summer. As we have only recently moved house, we don’t feel we know the neighbours well enough to ask them to take him in. Is there anything you’d suggest?
MK, Leamington Spa

Shih tzus aren’t really expensive, and they all look pretty much the same. So have him put down and buy a new one when you get back.

My ex-husband will be attending a funeral to which I am also invited. He dumped me and ran off with my best friend, then married her, leaving me brokenhearted. Since then, my life has got better and better, and their marriage is apparently rocky, as she soon discovered what a meanie he is. She will be at the funeral too. My question is, what is the etiquette for wearing diamonds to a funeral? Would it be acceptable to wear all of mine, or just the seven-carat solitaire ring and maybe a small tiara, to set off my black Versace gown?
GP, Islington

Funeral etiquette gives way to encountering-second-wife etiquette, which means: get the diamonds out, fling on the Versace, arrive in a Bentley Arnage (borrow one, if necessary) and check whether Pierce Brosnan (or something similar) is available to prop you up at the graveside. (I’d leave the tiara, though — there are limits.)

I am thinking about giving my boyfriend oral sex. I’ve never done it before, and wonder what is the best way to go about it.
LC, Weymouth

Practise. Take a medium-sized banana and push it into your mouth until you gag, while breathing in an increasingly panic-stricken fashion through your nose. Isn’t it fun?