fun fun fun

If you're reading this somewhere on the Northern Hemisphere, and you're not near the equator, chances are your fashion concerns these days are about keeping warm. It's actually snowing today in London - which never happens - and all I want to wear are my new gifted Mou boots and layers and lots of white. So while I'm safely tucked indoors with the cat, under the duvet, going through hundreds of press day photos, I can't get the song FUN FUN FUN by the Beach Boys out of my head. It's the theme song to the website of the designer of the shoes, KATIA LOMBARDO, featured in this post, for next season that I fell in love with at My Wardrobe's fabulously fun press day last week. Click here and keep that window open while you read this: I promise you'll be singing this song all day.

Just because it's cold out - or, actually, BECAUSE it's cold out - I'm craving the chocolate brown/black/white/bits of hot pink/lime green/turquoise accents of summer and sun. I want to wear this strapless Dolce & Gabanna swimsuit with Katia's crazy heels and big sunglasses and sun hats and lounge by a pool at a resort. The reality is of course I'd be IN the pool or the sea, not wearing any of the above accessories apart from swim goggles, my hair would be all wet and ungroomed and the chlorine and/or sea water would be eating the above mentioned D&G swimsuit. But still: it's fun to think about.

The other girl in these shots - besides me - is TALA SAMMAN, of MyFashDiary, and we met her at the My Wardrobe thing as she was leaving - we were with Susie and they were chatting and Jen & I started snapping her like we were papparazzi, going crazy for her hot pink Lanvin necklace she'd just bought @ H&M (her puffa jacket is Juicy Couture). I'll do another post of her soon - with a little online interview - and hopefully we'll meet up and do another shoot before she leaves for Dubai.

All the shoes shown here (apart from my lovely gifted Kurt Geiger's, top, and the lime suede DVF pair) are by KATIA LOMBARDO, available soon at MY WARDROBE (they've currently got S/S and A/W 2010).

THANK YOU SUSIE!! More to come xoxo

p.s. CORRECTION: Not all the shoes are Katia's - they're all at My Wardrobe - or will be - but apart from the nude heels with the kind of lizard/leopard heels, the other two - the boots with the great zig zag soles in camel, and in black, they're by the Danish designer CAMILLA SKOVAARD. I thought I could tell by the label but I no, I was wrong. Have you noticed there are some great FEMALE shoe designers moving up in the rank lately? You go, girls!


snow bunnies

Shini and Kit. Shini's jacket Uniqlo, Kit's is her mom's. I can't link you but you know them by now! Off to a new, cheaper NHS dentist - by foot - and scared. They don't do gas and I hate shots. Wish I felt as tough as these two look in this shot.

anna, being garbo

Still more photos from that same Armani/Brambleton launch. I watched this girl, Anna, standing with a group, surrounded by a sea of very tall, very thin, very animated modelly types dressed mostly in black (this was the same party where Lara Stone was with David Walliams, and Carine Roitfeld - everyone was there). She was so calm, seemed so un-self conscious. She was the only person I came up to after I shot her and gave her my card.

Later, I was with Shelley - the creator of Mou - who I had met the day before ('softly, softly: mou) and brought to the party. Happened to show her the shot and she said 'Oh that's Anna! She's friends with my assistant Kate!' So we found her - she was looking for me - and had a nice chat. She's Russian and an artist, doing some fascinating stuff. (That's another thing: quiet people can have such an interesting inner life). She was breaking the other Anna's rule - Anna Dello Russo's - number two: The No coats at parties rule.

If you want to know a bit more about her, click here.

It's not even like I went around with my camera the whole time: mostly it was in my bag but at the end I just suddenly got in the zone. The lovely thing about photographing people at parties is you can be quiet and observe and people don't seem to mind cause they think you're doing your job.

These days, I love being quiet at parties. I used to feel I had to be 'on' and now - maybe it's cause I'm older - I'm more interested in the people who are quietly watching, too. People who don't tell their whole life story the minute you meet them. There's a power in being a bit mysterious. I'm hoping to achieve it some day, but having a camera as a prop helps me get there, as my default is to never shut up.

Even now. Okay. I'm done. : )

Tube strike in London. AND it might snow! What are you up to today?


85% glam

Met this woman at the Kurt Geiger party. She's broken Anna Dello Russo's rule about not wearing a coat inside, but apart from that I feel she's got the glam balance down: she's kept the fur and lace from not being totally OTT by wearing edgy boots and long leather gloves. And somehow because her features are strong, not delicate, and her hair so hard edged - a cross between the 70s skater, Peggy Flemming, and that other iconic Peggy: Peggy Moffat, the model who famously wore the first (and last) topless swimsuit in the 60s, somehow it works.

Or at least, I think so. What do you think? Is there such thing as being too glam?

Thank you for your wonderful comments yesterday and especially your tips for Mr. Dot in buying me the right ring. He hasn't seen them yet and is, as we speak, warning that if I don't post, shower, dress, make oatmeal, and am in the car in 37 minutes so that we can go for a lovely walk in Hampstead Heath leaving at 11:00 a.m. SHARP I will be in big trouble. So this doesn't seem the right time. But I shall be glam and warm in my new gifted Mou boots and faux fur jacket - perhaps if I ask nicely he'll take a few snaps.

Hope you're having a wonderful weekend! What's on your Sunday schedule? Hope it's relaxing. I can live vicariously through your experience, as my weekends tend to be anything but.


give me a ring

Ever since I did my post on Thanksgiving about how I'm all holier than thou and don't want any material things, I have been obsessed - absolutely obsessed - with the idea of owning a cocktail ring. I don't have any, apart from a few that my sweet niece Scarlett gave me two years ago, when she was six. She had some, gave me some, they were like friendship rings, and she's on tour with my brother now for Thanksgiving weekend, flying in private jets and hanging out at hotel pools and performing on stage, and I'm sure she's forgotten all about those rings. They're great: big pink and orange fake stones, surrounded by little fake diamonds. But the rings are sharp from the plastic moulds, and they really are Cracker Jack prizes. Literally.

No, I want a real one. A real, faux one. Like the trio of YSL rings shown here - all shot in the same press day (clockwise from top, Camilla at Urban Outfitters, Jackie with a mini cheeseburger at River Island, and Tala - more about her coming up - at My Wardrobe). All with YSL rings. They're not CRAZY expensive, they're about £100, and they're so bang on trend right now that you just know the people wearing them won't want them a year from now.

That's why I keep trying to think if there's a way I can DIY something.. but I don't have welding equipment and I don't know if super glue is strong enough. Does anyone have any DIY tips? Or know any really nice cheaper versions?

It's started me thinking: I do have a wish list. A secret wish list. And this is on the top of it. My family aren't together at Christmas - we're scattered to the winds, and tend to spend it with our spouses' families - and even with my family-in-law, we all don't make a fuss. I've even got in the habit of buying myself something silly or practical and wrapping it and signing it from my husband.

But this year.. I want him to buy me a cocktail ring. I'm like a dog with a bone about it. I can't let go. He knew this would happen when I started blogging about fashion. 'Remember the number one rule for drug dealers: DON'T DO YOUR OWN DRUGS'.

I know, I know, Mick, we can't always get what we want, but right now I want what I WANT, not just what I need.

Torn between two songs that have been playing in my head non stop. I don't know if anyone reading this ever plays my little youtube videos, and I'm so used to thinking of Madonna as she is now, with her boy toys and her old lady hands, but damn if she wasn't at her absolute brilliant Lady Gaga best when she made this video.

Thank you to VESHOEVIOUS for inadvertently sourcing the ring above: it's Merle O'Grady, with My Wardrobe, and she did an interview with her at LFW on her brilliant blog, Taxonomy of a Wardrobe. Check it out.

All the rings shown here, apart from the YSL ones, are from MY WARDROBE press day. Available soon. Hopefully, in time for Mr. Dot to get me one for Christmas.

(This just in: Literally. The top ring - the one I love - it's by Aamaya by Priyanka and My Wardrobe has it online as of this minute in black onyx (black/white, check it out) for £157.00. They'll be getting more in soon but that's the first. Check out more of their line: AAMAYA by PRIYANKA.

Because, after all, let's face it: we are, when all is said and done, living in a material world. And I am a material girl.


like some kind of crazy DIY

Jennifer spotted these sunglasses with her keen Crusader X-Ray vision at River Island's press day. 'It's like some crazy DIY project, where you just glue everything on', she said and that seemed the theme of the day. What fascinates me is the crossover influence from people like Shini, who took an ordinary vintage pleated skirt and turned it into something extraordinary with the use of one or two cleverly placed, tiny gold ordinary household safety pins, or Moschino (at My Wardrobe's unbelievably wonderful press event) making a beautiful collar of gold - very Nerfettiti - using the same safety pins.

Shini's gorgeous buttery soft palest salmon pink biker jacket is by DLUX. In case you were wondering.

The excellent seared tuna nicoise was at My Wardrobe, as was the top necklace with coins (sorry I forgot who made it and they're moving offices today! It's made of real coins, some even seem to have Jewish stars on them) but I do know the bracelet, above 2nd from last shot, is by the wonderfully talented Lucy Hutchings, represented by Robinson Pfeffer and available at My Wardrobe soon (some of her other designs here). And back full circle to Jen in another wacky pair of sunglasses from River Island, and the most gorgeous sixties inspired minidress, also by Moschino, also at My Wardrobe (coming soon: this is for spring - but I'd wear it now!)

Shini is wearing: Pink leather biker jacket from LUPHIA (it's on sale - only £42!), shoes from Zara, pleated dress - which she DIY's with pins for that effect - by storets.com.

Thank you for your lovely Thanksgiving wishes and comments yesterday! How was your Thanksgiving, if you partake? Our was lovely, like a little Alice in Wonderland tea party Thanksgiving: everything in miniature (roast garlic chicken: turkey for two people, and a cat, seemed excessive) apart from the stuffing. You can't make a small amount of stuffing and besides, why would you want to? Stuffing is such an amazing invention. It's like DIY: throw everything you love together, and bake.


my wish list

You might notice that I don't tend to do 'wish lists': that's probably because - something you might also have noticed - my blog, while being about style in general, street style often specifically, is rarely about consumerism in general. As trends evolve, I'm more likely to shop my own wardrobe. I have never gone online for some retail therapy.

That doesn't mean I don't love and admire and appreciate and learn and absorb and delight in those objects of desire created by people to be worn.

As I come off weeks of press events - an honour to be part of - and start to sift thru my treasures and jewels, my photographs of STUFF - I want to take this day that is most sacred to me, Thanksgiving, my family's personal favourite holiday, to send my wish to you: that you feel grateful for what you have, and have what you need, and the rest is just want, but that your happiness isn't based on it.

That's my wish list: it's pretty short. I wish - for me, for you - that whatever you have today, it is enough. All the rest is just icing on the cake.

On my list of things I'm grateful for, those things that are most difficult to depict in photographs, in no particular order, clockwise from left: My Motel faux leopard coat, 2nd season, which keeps me safe and warm, my new GIFTED Kurt Geiger shoes (I chose the ones I'd be least likely to buy, because my friend Carrie, from Wish Wish Wish, who was at the event too, said she felt a gift is the best time to go outside one's comfort zone, stylistially). I'm also grateful for: beaches in the world that are still clean and swimmable, our cat, Tigger aka Pooh, who was our previous cat and who lived and died bravely and before he went, I asked him to 'come back and find us' and he has, in the form of our new cat, Reincarnated Pooh, and my family, who I cherish and miss, some of whom are shown here.

I'm also grateful to my Man, my husband, Mr. Dot, who walked up to Whole Foods to buy the last tin of Libby's pumpkin so I can make my pie, and whose bark is worse than his bite. My friends, old and new. My good health, and the good health of the people I love. Our governments, here in the UK and back home in America, who keep us safe, and free. My father, who, with my mother, made everything possible and who, I know, watches over my family and me. Have I left anything out? Oh yes, all of you who come here: most of you don't comment, but I can see you're here, and it your support that's the reason I do this. And because I do, a whole world has opened up to me, and for that, I'm eternally grateful.

Off to make some pie. Happy Thanksgiving, whether you're American or not. That's what I love about the day: it has nothing to do with race, religion, or nationality. It's just about feeling grateful, and eating stuffing. Another thing I am grateful for, as, along with pumpkin pie, it's like the best invention on the planet.

What are you grateful for?


we are all birds of paradise

Last night I had the most amazing experience: the Kurt Geiger press day. You come into this beautiful old building, climb a winding stair, and enter into a tropical rainforest. On a large screen in the entry, a film of Richard Attenborough with birds of paradise plays as you enter this beautiful, high ceiling ballroom with french doors, and two installations: one is day, with shoes some dangling, some on the floor and then.. night.

It was the most spiritual experience, hearing the soothing sounds of birds in the tropics, gazing up at these beautiful coloured pieces. I spoke with the CEO, who really took the time to talk with each of us - and listen. He described the creative evolution, which started with the YSL quote, and then they discovered that Sir Richard had also said, while filming the birds, the following quote:

And, said the CEO: there was our genesis for the idea.

He is also really into bloggers: he gets it about what we are doing. It felt like everything coming full circle: we have a voice, and the people at Kurt Geiger are listening.

I always am drawn to coincidence: serendipity. That is my way of believing that God is paying attention to little old me. The art of creativity - and especially, creative collaboration - is something that, when it all clicks, it is divine. That's what last night felt like. Watching women arrive and gaze up at each of the beautiful shoes.. I must run now, just a few more press events, but I want to continue this thought because it all made sense last night when I was falling asleep and now, I'm just babbling.

Thank you, my dear friend Charlotte, for inviting me. We were friends before I started blogging, and before she started working with them, which is just part of the whole serendipitousness of life.



Yeah, why not: throw a bit of street style your way. Didn't realise til I scrutinised it later: she's got a snood! Lucky girl. I'm still trying to figure out which jumper to sacrifice to the DIY god.

Shot these two guys almost a few steps from each other: Curtain Road and nearer Liverpool Station, within probably ten minutes of each other. Same place, totally different worlds.

Went to the most amazing press events earlier, including Kurt Geiger which was so beautiful. Spiritual. Can't wait to show you. But now, to sleep, perchance, to dream. Sleep well everyone! Except if you're not on GMT, that would be a bit weird. If you're in China you're just about waking up now, and in LA and Alaska, you've just finished lunch. That never ceases to amaze me but then again, I'm easily impressed.

breaking the rules: #1

Anna's Rule Number 1: "Don't wear RED or GREEN outfits. You will look alike a Christmas tree."

Trying a new format: when at a crowded party, for example, and you can't get a clear top to toe shot. What do you think?

I love the way this girl wore those Birkenstock-like sandals with such confidence, in a sea of super high elaborate black heels. She looks so familiar, I can't put my finger on why. I might just know her from around town, she's not an actress is she?

Anonymous: can you help me out here please? And while we're at it, can you tell me who made her skirt and her shoes? (I should explain: there is someone out there - my own virtual Fairy Godmother - who calls Herself Anonymous and always can be counted on to source, correct, and otherwise helpfully give me the Answers to the Universe. And I don't have a clue who She is, which makes it all the more wonderful!)

p.s. Big thank you to Kazuko who identified the skirt as Balenciaga. In the time it took me, after posting, to jump in the shower. And her blog is fabulous, check it out.


happy blirthday, dear park&cubey

Shini's blog, Park & Cube, turns two today! Which means It is older than Mine. Which makes sense because although I am older than Shini, she is an old soul and I bow to her wisdom. I met her at fashion week last February and we instantly got on, but neither of us had seen or heard of each others' blogs - except perhaps on some deeply subliminal level.

I remember the first post I saw- I think it was a few days later, I found her blog and she was posting late at night about how google was her mother. That made absolute sense to me: she'd google something and it would say 'don't you mean...' and you'd think, NO, MOM, I meant blah blah blah. And judging from her popularity (or rather, the Blog's, because I am starting to think that our Blogs, like people's Dogs, can, if we don't train them properly, start to dominate our lives and expect to be walked, fed, and just generally, cuddled), but as I was saying, judging from her blog's popularity, I'm not the only one who just totally gets it about Park & Cube.

Shot last week in Oxford. Would you forgive me if I don't source everything right now? I'm just so knackered from a really long hike up and down the Thames (Isis) exactly where this was shot. Yesterday, inspired by our Oxford adventure on Monday, Mr. D & I drove back, met found the best pub, walked walked walked, saw Jen, walked some more, had lunch @ Jamie's Italian place, drove home.

The weird thing is, I shot each of them - Shini, Kit, Jen - at different times and they didn't watch each others' shots - it was all kind of random. Also Mr. D & I were in the same spot - AND last night I watched Any Human Heart (magnificent!) and he was talking to a girl who looked just like me at that age, sitting on a bench, exactly here. There. Whatever.

Anyway: here's to Park & Cube, may it grow and prosper and live forever.

dress up

It's hard to believe that in London, fashion 'press week' is still going on! It's lovely to be invited to events - they really are creatively, beautifully done and I appreciate the effort people go into making them a success. My challenge, tho, is that I have so many photos I want to show you and yet I don't want my blog to be a whole PR puff piece.. well you know what I'm talking about, especially if you, too, have a fashion blog. Am I the only one who can't wait for it to be Thursday- and Thanksgiving- so this can just stop? And then, the Christmas madness begin!

How do you work around it: the Press Day Posting issue? Do you alternate posts? I could use some suggestions. I mean, I feel manners are so important, and that it's rude not to post soon after visiting - but how long is too long? A week? Month? Year?

Is there a sell-by date for posting?

My heart still beats the most for one of my first events. It was the day of the Tube Strike - or one of the days but the crazy day. Shini and I were East, other friends were in the West End, no one could get where they were going.. it was like being snowed in. And we were in the BEST place: the huge, beautiful, warm, light open plan gorgeous showroom that is ROBINSON PFEFFER.

And to give you an idea how cool and nice and lovely and wonderful they are there, each time I apologise in an email for not posting yet, they just keep saying 'it's okay, really, don't stress about it, whenever..' I need to take a deep breath and start posting. It doesn't have to be perfect, doesn't have to be a theme... well this theme is just kind of round dots and beigey images. From top: me trying on the DRESS UP trench (available at LIBERTY LONDON), which was such a luxurious gorgeous perfect trench (I didn't realise, Shini was trying it on while I was talking to Pip I think). Then a men's shirt from The Stolen Girlfriends Club (more about them coming up), the rings that look like little old fashioned band aids - that's 'plasters' to you Brits - are by TOBY JONES, available online at OKI-NI.

And last but not least - never least - is Shini in a necklace by Mimi of Brook & Lyn: on the left is what she wore that day, on the right is a top by Obakki, at Austique. Hope I got it right but if in doubt just contact the lovely folk @ RP: they're amazing. And I have so so much more I want to show you. But at least it's a start.


It feels like ages since we did a fun little impromptu photo shoot in the rain after lunch with Jennifer, aka the Style Crusader, in Covent Garden (same day as Eskimo kiss - more on that later), but I just realised Jen's great post was only the 13th ('resurrected'), anyway she's said it all better than I could. It seems like ages since then: press days will do that to one.

Anyway: I want a snood. But I don't want to buy one. I keep thinking with all the jumpers I've amassed over the years that I can't seem to part with there must be ONE that I'm ready to take the plunge with and somehow DIY it into a snood. I always think people that do DIY are so brave. But then again, so are people who GIVE THINGS AWAY and aren't pack rats or even, like Jen is known to do, sell stuff on eBay so as to buy new stuff. If I do get the courage to make my own snood, you'll be the first to know.

Mrs. Crusader is wearing: Wearing: Cabbages & Roses jumper, Jigsaw snood, Made in the Shade leggings, Mentor wedges, and Alexander McQueen bag.

what's so funny

Don't you hate when people say 'I'll tell you the story later' and then they don't? Well I did just that with the 'squatter's riot' post and then left it so long you've probably forgotten all about it.

We were having a girl's day in Oxford last week (which the Mr. & I just had the most perfect follow up to yesterday! But no photos) and - I swear to you, this is not all we talk about or do, we are so much more interested in non fashion things - but inevitably if you get a bunch of fashion blogger/photographers together, the shooting starts. And I was shooting Jen and I tend to shoot people from below and she laughed and said 'Jill I know how you stay in shape' and said I SQUAT when I shoot.

We were all laughing so hard when I did the shots and she sent me these three which I haven't posted because I'm starting to feel like 'do you really want to see more boring shots of me wearing the same leopard coat all the time' (I really didn't dress for style that day, just warmth and ease to walk around - no silly shoes) but she's been asking - and I really HATE this shot, too. But that's the thing: if we can't laugh at ourselves, who can we laugh at. Really.

Faux leopard coat, Motel as before. American Apparel riding pants, shoes.. they're old, I think Hush Puppies? and I've had this backpack forever, from Coach.

Just to show you how boring my style is: this was from another day. Only difference is the shoes, from Barneys NY. Oh and bag is Kate Spade, a freebie-as-birthday-present from my ex-sister in law, who works in PR, but that is REALLY another story. (Sorry no links but do you guys really need it at this point? I mean, if you want to source something, don't you just google?)

If you want to read something really interesting, Shini did a post recently ('Circus Blogslam') that opened a good conversation on the concept of 'self style' blogs and the effect it has on our brains. Okay maybe I'm paraphrasing. But read it, if you haven't already. Would love to hear your thoughts.


the rules according to anna dello russo

Anna, I hope you'll appreciate this homage I've created based on your 10 Rules to Always be on Top. (But then again: sometimes, with the right attitude, rules are meant to be broken).

"Now begins the critical period for PARTIES to celebrate CHRISTMAS. They involving not only the family and friends, as well as formal events. I'm going to remember you my 10 RULES to be always on TOP!"

1. Don't wear RED or GREEN outfits. You will look alike a Christmas tree.

2. Forget any COATS (also if outside it's only 5 degrees). You should make a big impact just with your dress.

3. Choose a GOLD. You will emphasize the idea to be a Christmas GIFT to unwrap.

4. Go to the hairdresser, facial,manicure and pedicure. Don't be worry to be OVER-DONE!

5. Choose between HAT and MAKEUP, if you wear a hat keep fresh face otherwise you will looks like a transvestite.

6. Wearing lots of JEWELLERY. The sound of JEWELLERY banish bad thoughts and bad ghosts.

7. Focus on the SHOES. Generally at Christmas party you spend a lot of time seated on the sofa.

8. Shoes have to carry all the magical atmosphere of Christmas: Choose sparkling, shiny, eccentric, metallic, decorative, precious, brocade, extravagant, color-full, magnificent, enchanting, ... PAIR OF SHOES.

9. Don't be worry about your BAG, you immediately will forget it on some chairs.

10. Don't throw yourself on the drinks and on the food. It's not POLITE!"

. . . . . . . .

All text exactly quoted by Anna Della Russo, Italianate Inglese and all. Photos by me, as before from Thursday night. Apart from the two shots, above (that's from a post coming up soon): this party was so cool and clean they only served clear drinks: vodka on ice, or sparkling water. Nothing to ruin the art, or the fashion.

Anyone have any other good rules for parties? I so totally agree about the shoes. I wish I had any shoes halfway near as amazing as what I saw the other night.