Sunday, 28 February 2010
I bit the bullet today and bought this luscious mannequin, both as an assistant for my etsy store and to decorate my bedroom. I get the feeling she's going to have a real personality and that we're going to get on ever so well and at £50, including DHL delivery, she just radiates generosity! I can't wait to just casually hang my tape measure around her shoulders.
Saturday, 27 February 2010
I'm sick of winter and massively bogged down with one million things to do which have all pounced on me all at once. Seeing as my life has been tragically reduced to sitting in bed all day, laptop becoming fossilised into a living, breathing part my body and crumbs permanently loitering on my chest, I've decided to try and inject a little mojo back into my lacklustre life. I'll even explain the above pictures for your reading pleasure in hope that they will motivate me into becoming a more productive and ceaselessly positive person. (They are all meant to represent moments of significant joy from last year, overwhelmingly picked from the Summer months, naturally.)
1) Jian Wei dozing in Whitworth Park during freak heatwave in Manchester. This was just before I returned home for the summer holidays and, as he'd broken up about three weeks earlier than me, came to stay for a whole week, which is a rarity for us during term time.
2) My older sister Chloe getting married to her husband Neil. It was a wonderful day with the only downside being that she woke up an Emerson and went to sleep a Hoare.
3) Trips to Hunstanton beach on the beautiful North Norfolk coast and contracting third degree sunburn is a summer holiday staple for me. On this particular day, I spent too much time fussing over my younger sister's Snow White skin with sun screen to realise that my own was getting a grotesque grilling.
4) A surprise little fella' in a cup of caramel latte Jianny got for virtually free in the cafe at Rough Trade in Shoreditch, London. It evokes memories of Wavves going into complete meltdown after his amp burst into flames. We had a little chat with him afterwards and he was horrid!
5) Punting for the first time in my life in Cambridge for my sister's hen do. (Almost nearly wetting myself due to too much Pimms, bursting into tears and leaping onto the river bank at full speed in desperation of finding a toilet which later materialised in an ancient college.) It hurt.
6) Amazing 18th century farm house in Lincolnshire where Jian Wei and I spent my 21st birthday in a Yurt! It was a surprise present from one of my oldest friends, Ella.
7) Jolly graffiti in the bark of a tree along the side of the Seine in Paris. If only the yobs in England were as sentimental.
8) Magical greenhouse containing grape vines at said farmhouse.
9) Just Pariiiiiii. Lovliest holiday ever. Hopefully will be superceded by Budapest this year...
10) And finally, wild flowers cannot fail to make even the drizzliest of Mancunion evenings seem just slightly more hopeful.
But all's not doom and gloom. Last night I assisted my pal Clare in dying her hairs cherry red and the result was excellent. She really suits it with her green eyes and peaches and cream complexion and I now consider myself a master hairdresser with the ability to cut AND colour hair to perfection. (I won't mention now that she has a blog too or she'll actually tear the tongue from my head.) Beforehand we went for an Indian and I had the best Korma ever, most surprisingly was the distance of the restaurant from the Curry Mile, and afterwards for a few Gins at the Ram and Shackle. (These outings are rare for me as I have a pathological aversion to student life. I never intended to, it just sort of happened.) It was clearly a hub of the London hipster set 'up North' and we even spotted the head witch! Earlier in the day I trawled the Dead Shop and got some absolute wonders which'll be filtering their way into the shop throughout the week. Also bought myself some tasteless 1980s velvet print leggings in earthy colours which are going to cause my sister Cassie to call for me to be sectioned, and a cute cream handknitted scarf with pompoms on the ends. I needed to change by winter uniform slightly and a new £1 is the easiest and cheapest way to do it. The beauty with buying vintage being that once you're bored of an item you simply sell it on, at a profit!
Thursday, 25 February 2010
Can she do NO wrong?! This one image has caused me to reconsider my entire life plan: I am now certain that I should abandon any aspirations of working for Penguin and devote myself solely to the quest of becoming an 'it' girl. I may not have a bone structure but I have one connection in a high place (fashion designer cousin Alex Noble, who kitted Lady Gaga out for the Brit awards) and a boyfriend at Central Saint Martins who is clearly going to be the next Damien Hirst. Although the odds are infinitely stacked against me, cue my Norfolk heritage and over-developed left canine, pathological inertia and superiority complex, I feel the masses always favour an underdog. Now I've had this revelation I have no further commitment to read Freud and his incomprehensible vicissitudes and must turn to the far more pressing task of searching for fake Chanel handbags on eBay.
Wednesday, 24 February 2010
Monday, 22 February 2010
After checking out from the Hilton, Jianny and I decided to make the most of the freak sunshine and perused the Northern Quarter for the above pictured titbits. Although he is now far away, returned to London and probably navigating the tube as I type, the beautiful clothes are still here and many have already made their way onto Etsy. Be sure to check them out!
I start work at Topshop tomorrow and my first shift is from two 'til six o'clock. I'm really excited but also slightly apprehensive as they seem to have forgotten to induct me and I haven't got a uniform sorted or anything which'll probably mean having to make some very rushed decisions on the shop floor and then getting changed in a narrow toilet out the back. This is not how I imagined spending my priceless 60%-off-three-current-season-items allowance for uniform and I'm unsure as to how much cash I should take with me. £50? £100, just to be on the safe side? Anyway, wish me luck and I'll let you know how it went, no doubt, tomorrow evening!
Thursday, 18 February 2010
After my excruciating seminars tomorrow I am fleeing student life for a day and a night. This will begin by picking up Jianners at Piccadilly Station and will be followed by checking in for our one night of luxury at the four star Hilton hotel. Located within Manchester's skinny Beetham Tower, the tallest building outside of London and the tallest residential building in Europe, the Hilton boasts 'Lost in Translation' style suites with floor to ceiling glass walls, a swimming pool in the outcropping ridge allowing views of the streets below via its transparent bottom and the infamous Cloud 23 bar in which a guestlist operates at all times. Chuck Bass would most certainly approve.
I can express how excited I am by the prospect of free, uncurtailed central heating, running hot water and an eat-all-you-can buffet style breakfast, hopefully consisting of lots of fried things and continental novelties such as slices of cheeses on platters and huge bowls of yoghurt with ladels. The sauna, steam room, aquarium-like swimming pool, marble bathroom with BATH TUB and a view which, on a clear day, can stretch as far as to encompass the Blackpool Tower, Liverpool Cathedral and the Peak District doesn't sound too bad either!
The picture I have included was found on google image search and depicts a pretty idyllic Mancunian scene -cobalt blue skies, eager tourists drenched in sunshine pottering around the renovated remains of some sweatshops- all the while being overlooked by the glittering omnipresence of the city's future. I think they should build MORE skyscrapers, what are they waiting for??
Wednesday, 17 February 2010
I've just got back from a cheeky trip to Barnardo's with a carrier bag full of handknitted cardigans in an assortment of glittery and pastel wools and all with adorable plastic buttons. Each one cost a mere two pounds and so I am very loath to tear them from my own arms and list them on Etsy. One top will be though: a vintage 80s white sweater with a mint green lace 'neckerchief' so keep checking here for this particularly garment and many more. The Barnardo's in the University of Manchester shopping precinct is a neglected mine that needs tapping at least thrice weekly to snap up all the best bargains before they're rifled by less deserving hands. It also wins my utmost respect for having a £2 price limit policy on nearly all items, including coats (!) and thus avoids the faux pas committed primarily by Oxfam in ripping customers off. This may sound heartless but charging £6.99 for a rinsed out and warped five-year-old Primark t-shirt is not my definition of charity. The ideology of the thrift store is symbiotic: donated items are sold at a profit to benefit charity whilst relying on the requirement that less well-off people have for bargainous clothing, shoes, bedding and home furnishings. Of course there are bourgeois vintage scavengers thrown into the mix but by assuming that everyone is willing to pay through the nose for something that has very little real monetary value is a grave mistake...
In other news, I spent the weekend in London and only just returned late last night, surprisingly surviving the inundation of the carriage by hardcore Man City supporters at Stoke-On-Trent. (The fact that I was reading a novel went down particularly badly but at least I didn't make the impossibly foolish error of wearing a hat...) On Valentine's Day Jian Wei surprised me by taking me on the London Eye, complete with red rose and chocolates, which was wonderful and I enjoyed the view so much. This was followed by Bella Italia and a Bailey's coffee which cannot fail to arouse complete bliss. On Monday we went to see 'A Single Man', Tom Ford's adaptation of the Christopher Isherwood novel. Despiting being beautifully directed and more than aesthetically pleasing, who knew modernism could be so stylish?, we both left feeling utterly depressed and in morbid moods for the rest of the evening. This was exacerbated by the madness of, yet another, failed lasagne - this one mutilated by preboiled pasta sheets, which formed a glutinous starch brick in the pan, and had to be shredded by hand to form mosaic-like layers. Yesterday was spent reading in the lovely ambience provided by Foyle's Jazz Cafe in Clerkenwell followed by a leisurely stint in Oxford Street Topshop to come up with a rough draft of my impending staff uniform. Yes, I got a job at Topshop! I am deliriously happy and cannot wait to start. Nothing can be worse than running about Pizza Express like a scolded flea, single-handedly waiting on twenty tables on an understaffed shift, can it? Wish me luck, staff discount here I come...
So I'm back at Uni today and had two lectures this morning, punctuated with an hour in the warm and greasy decadence of Gemini cafe with Clare and Charukie and an interesting Belgian-American. Despite often being thrown by Professor Jeremy Tambling's deeply erratic and therefore, presumably, genius lectures on how crap the library is and why he wishes Napoleon had invaded Britain, I am really enjoying my modules so far this term. The big surprise seems to have come with the eagerly anticipated, yet pathologically feared, Creative Writing: Poetry course which is proving to be a lot more fun and lighthearted than I ever imagined. I might even start posting the assignments up here, week by week, for your collective reading pleasure -comments being welcomed, of course. Which reminds me that I should probably get printing the sixteen contributions of my class mates and get 'constructively' criticising...
Saturday, 6 February 2010
So, after months of silence from American Apparel who found my general appearance and blog demeaner unbegetting of a stock room assistant, a rejection from a marketing writing assistant post within the uni which softened the blow with the words 'we'll keep you on file' and most, surprisingly of all, no response whatsoever from employee-guzzling Primark, it would appear as though I have an interview! After a tip off from a friend-of-a-friend working at Topman, revealing a rumour was circulating that Topshop may just be recruiting, I flew into town to hand in my application. Naturally, much consideration was given to a sartorial choice that would present me with the perfect equilibrium between 'inherently stylish' and 'made no effort at all - simply handing in a CV'. I think the choice of a casual high bun with velvet bow combination must have worked as less than two hours later, I received a phone call from Personnel asking me when I'd be availible to work etc and despite my phone running out of battery mid-conversation, I have somehow managed to secure myself an interview on Thursday! This is easily one of the most exciting moments of my career so far. Wish me luck!