24.9.11

let's get serious



This model was in the Holly Fulton show, which I loved. She told me her name and I thought I wrote it down, but we were on the Strand while I was trying to get to the Topshop Unique show in time. I had just found the bus with London Fashion Week splashed all over the side, but it was stationary, and empty. 'Hello sir, are you going to Waterloo for the Topshop show?' I asked the dour bus driver, who said 'Yes,' then he looked at my Photographer and Press passes, and said 'but this bus is only for the Buyers.' I looked around and it was clearly empty - and the show was starting in 15 minutes, and the walk alone would take at least that long, so I gave him my saddest puppy dog look, combined with a slight raising of the eyebrow to indicate, AW, come ON, have a heart, buddy, but he wasn't buying it.

'Okay, can you please tell me where the Press bus leaves from, then?' I asked, trying a new tact. 'Oh that's across the street,' he said, pointing, 'But it left five minutes ago.' (In other words, a few minutes after the start of our conversation.) Then I resorted to begging, but he held firm. Buyers, only. I was on the verge of offering him a twenty, but he looked like the type who would happily arrest me for attempted bribery. Sometimes you just gotta let it go.

So I started running. But first, that's when I saw this nice model, and we had a quick little chat and shoot, and I didn't even notice til now when I'm looking at the shot, what a great little nail detail she had going.



Then.. oh! I almost forgot the part where I tried again to find the bus - because the Buyer Driver said it might be circling round the block if the bridge is closed (huh?) and while I was, and thinking maybe, just maybe, the Gods would be on my side and there's be a taxi, but who did I see but my old friend Scott, the Sartorialist, ('I shot the Sartorialist', September 2009). He was standing in the street, watching me. 'Are you going to Topshop?' I asked frantically. 'Maybe', he said.

'Do you have an invitation?', the Sartorialist asked me.

'Yes,' I replied.

'Can you show it to me?', he asked. Meanwhile, the clock was ticking, and there were no buses or taxis in sight, and we weren't getting any younger. 'Of course,' said I, opening my handbag and handing him my ticket, because you don't say no to the Sartorialist. 'Good,' he said, 'because I want to send it to Garance.' (He pronounced it, btw, not GAR-ance, but in a Frenchy way, GarANCE). So here we are, in the street, no taxi, no bus, it's 2:55, and I'm quipping brightly to him about 'Well, I might not be shot by the Sartorialist, but at least my invitation is!'

Either he didn't find me funny, or he was concentrating on shooting it with his phone and sending it to Garance, but in any case, he was done with me, and off I sprinted across the bridge.



At which point I saw this girl, above, with two cute guys with big photographic equipment. They were trying to hail a cab, but there weren't any. I'm gonna just try hoofing it, I told them, but she pointed to her shoes - which were fabulous - but had mile high heels. We exchanged sympathetic glances, I wished them luck - they promised to pick me up if they found a taxi - and I ran to the old Eurostar station, which I'd been to last year. But I still got really lost. And ran in - leaving a line queuing outside - and wouldn't you know: it was starting late. They had really great beef stew (which I'm making now, btw: I've still got this cold/flu/bug) on mashed potatoes, which I inhaled gratefully, and then I saw the girl from the bridge. They'd ended up going on foot, after all, but they, too made it in time!

I didn't see the Sartorialist inside. Or, Garance. But I did see him after, outside. Alone. With his camera. Watching, with a serious face on. And then I walked back, across Waterloo bridge. Next to me on the bridge was the Buyer Bus, returning slowly in the traffic, to Somerset House. It was empty.



My last shot in the Serious Series is my new friend Carlota, aka Carrottline. I love her look. So serious. She's been leaving wonderful comments as long as I can remember, and she's got a lovely blog, but this was the first we actually met. She's in London now for school, and we're planning to meet for a coffee in a few weeks when she's settled in. She wasn't having a great time at fashion week - she didn't know anyone yet - but we've all been there, and know how it feels. Everyone has to start somewhere.

We've had to cancel a lovely dinner at our friends' tonight cause of this bug. But I've made some killer gingerbread and am drinking the best home remedy: fresh lemon, ginger, and honey tea. And if you want to laugh, click on 'I'm not talking', and follow instructions.

p.s. Big thank you to my friend Estelle, Serendipity 2307! The model is, and I quote: 'Sandra aka Suzie Bird very famous frenchie model!' And E should know: she's French, and she's a model, and she's modelled in Paris, so there you go.

19 comments:

A Girl, A Style said...

Ha, I was saying the same thing the other day about how isn't it a shame that when people get photographed, even if they're in the middle of laughing, they'll pull a deathly serious face for the camera. And love your tales about Scott and Topshop!

Briony xx

polka dot said...

Yeah, total opposite of the old days (pre-blogs) when if someone pointed a camera at you, you'd automatically show all your teeth. Sometimes I'd take a photo and put my hand over the person's smile: their eyes might not be smiling at all.

There's a whole new way of posing for photos now: street style style. Totally serious. I love the challenge of getting people to laugh, despite themselves.

Have a great time in NY Briony! Safe trip. xx

Looking Fab in your forties said...

You should have hooked her up with Pearl and I, we took Lawrence under our wing! Great post, as ever Jill xxx

polka dot said...

I know - what you & Pearl did with Lawrence was so lovely (HE's so lovely!). She did bring a friend one day - and it was so hard to get everyone together at any given time. There was one day, just a glorious moment, when so many of the people I really like were together, meeting each other. Actually it happened a few times. But more often, someone was in one part and someone was somewhere else.. it's not that large an area but it's surprisingly vast.

Thank you, Fab!! ; ) It was such a delight to finally meet you. xx

Estelle said...

That's Sandra aka Suzie Bird very famous frenchie model! x

Estelle

Anonymous said...

Great Blog!

I own an Italian blouse store: you used to have one on Oxford Street and I am sure you will again

Like my facebook page...naracamicie san francisco

polka dot said...

Thanks E, I'll update asap xx

Anonymous said...

I love his blog but he doesn't come across as particurarly nice at all in interviews etc. - if anything, he seems pretentious and full of himself! but I might be wrong, of course. Just the impression I get. Kasia xx

O D Y S S E Y said...

i really like the eye makeup on the first model especially.
that's funny about the sartorialist wanting to photograph your invitation! perhaps we'll see in on garance dore's blog soon.
your tale of trying to get that driver to let you on reminds me of the time i needed a taxi while on st barth. i had a twisted ankle, carrying groceries, and needed to get across the harbour to the yacht i was cheffing on. he said "no. i will not take you there." i politely pleaded, explained my predicament. he then gave me the silent treatment. i hobbled all the way to the boat, grimacing in pain. this was during the 2 or so hour lunch break when most of st barth shuts down...who'd have thought taxis did the same? oh well, stories like these make good conversation!
i hope you are enjoying your FW adventures, Jill!
xo

Carrott said...

Thank you so much, Jill! Now that I'm looking closely.... I look like my mum in this picture! It's weird 'cause we don't look alike but here I have something from her! xxx

The Foolish Aesthete said...

For all the stress you guys were under trying to catch shows, these ladies didn't seem agitated one bit. Loved your bus driver story. Some people really just do as they're told, to a T! Hope you get over your bug (seems like you and Sabine shared the same one?). xx

Michele said...

I totally agree with you Kasia the Anonymous! He sounds like a bit of a dooshbag if you ask me! He does himself no favors at all when he speaks....... I think, personally, I am instinctively "put off" folks who take themselves too seriously? Love the rest of the tale though Jill. It is so nice to experience London vicariously through your words & images!!!! THANK you! :-) xxo

polka dot said...

Carrott!! My pleasure. I'd love to see a photo of your mom: I'm fascinated with the way we can see family resemblances (it was incredible, this summer, to meet my 5 year old cousin's daughter - whatever that's called - and she's so sweet and I see myself in her EXACTLY). I can remember being that age and we'd be at an event and I'd see elderly relatives scrutinising my face and being astounded to see I was exactly like my maternal grandmother. Who I never met. She died just days or weeks after I was born.

I do see her in myself when I wear dark lipstick. I often feel she's watching over me: that in some ways, I'm a reincarnation of her.

Foolish: thank you. Yes Sabine got it first - and her lovely daughter Sarah had it before her. She's the one who dubbed it 'Somersetitis.'

And Michele: I didn't meant to run him down, and he's always been perfectly fine to me. Let's put it this way: I'd rather have a thousand Sartorialists then some of the female bloggers I've met and have been dealing with since starting this blog. Some - no names - are well known, some less so, but I've had experiences that would make for some great blog posts.

Talk about taking themselves too seriously: I've literally gotten email rants written at 3:00 in the morning, from a blogger who presents herself as being so chilled, talking about how her 'numbers' are bigger than my numbers, and how she and her blog friends are getting everyone to hate me and the PRs to take me off their lists!

It's all so silly. Our blogs are meant to be hobbies, fun, a way to form a sweet virtual community. It has somehow mutated into something quite unhealthy for some people, women especially. My friend Kate put it really well in her comment here:

http://eightlondon.blogspot.com/2011/08/quote-of-week-on-blogging.html

They actually start thinking they're famous. I don't even know what they think they'll achieve in this grasp for 'fame' or power: they're certainly not after curing cancer, of saving the planet. World domination, perhaps?

The Sart.. it's probably true, what you said, but unlike the others, he's never done anything to me personally - and then again, these days I don't even read his blog. I only have time to stop by a few, so I figure it might as well be the people who stop by mine. As it is, I don't have time to visit all the lovely blogs I'd like to.

And as for the rest: live and let live, that's my motto. Life's way too short.

alexandratherese said...

Oh Jill I just received your incredible lovely and heart-warming comment and already my Sunday is going well as a result! I feel so bad for not having visited your blog for ages because, as you know, I usually read every post and comment because I enjoy your posts and shots so much! But alas, school commitments have been very intense over the past few weeks and in-between academic work and extra-curricular activities I just haven't had the energy to do anything but plonk myself in front of the fire with either a good book or the tv. But I am determined to find a way to work with it and keep posting and keep reading and commenting!

Reading this post and having flicked back through your most recent fashion week snapshots just makes me wish I was there even more! One day it will happen though, I know it will. I can't believe that bus driver wouldn't let you on, I sighed audibly with relief when I read that the show was running late anyway! How strange that the sartorialist only wanted to take a photo of your invite - it seems like there are many bizarre experiences to be had at fashion week!

Thank you so much for putting me on your blog roll - it's gotten to the point now where I enjoy having a few blogs that I always read because I feel I've gotten to know their authors and I enjoy what they talk about. And yes I am very happy and very well with the prospect of lots of exciting things happening this (academic) year! And thank you for inspiring me to make time to write a post today, because I love my writing and it is so cathartic.

Take care and I hope your cold gets better very soon - I truly feel for you because colds are my very least favour illness and they seem to last forever. Keep warm + keep drinking your honey and lemon. If you have a cough too I can also recommend eating chocolate (hear me out, please?!) because (and I learnt this when in primary school) chocolate contains a chemical called theobromine which is one third more effective the codeine - which is found in most cough medicines - at soothing a sore throat. And it tastes much nice than cough medicine!

Alexandra xxxxxx

polka dot said...

Thank you, dear Alexandra!

I've had to cancel my first official restaurant review. We were so looking forward to it, it was lunch today at an amazing restaurant - it was arranged by the nicest PR company - but I just got thru to the restaurant, and they were absolutely lovely.

I swear by a tea of sliced raw ginger root, honey, and fresh lemon - which I just drink constantly. Thank you, I didn't know that about chocolate. I've baked gingerbread, but I'm going to ask my husband to buy some good dark Green & Black chocolate.

Thank you, I've learned my one new thing of the day! Now I can go back to sleep. Good luck with school, Alexandra, and I promise to visit your blog more, too. And today's a good day to try my idea with your Magritte homage.. will send it over to you soon. xox

Mat said...

and that is some serious hair and lipstick from the last lady, ace colours

Michele said...

Hi again Jill, and thanks for that link to eightLondon...... them's some astute musings!! I am sad that anyone would send you an email "big-upping" themselves & their 'numbers', but I am sickened & APPALLED that they would then go on to attack you in such a vicious way! Some women, eh? They seem to take their life lessons straight from the kindergarten playground! I enjoy your blog because it seems genuine - you aren't trying to prove anything, and far from protecting your 'patch' I have watched over the last few years as you have helped & encouraged other bloggers, (just one example being your advice to others on how to enroll for LFW last SS, although there have been so many others.) Long my you, & your wonderful, heartfelt words, thrive & prosper!!!! xxo

SirayaWalker said...

Hi polka dot, its me again (Siraya)
Nice pics, and Kelis is in the picture OMG!

polka dot said...

Hi Saraya! Good to hear from you. I'm so clueless, I didn't know who Kelis is: I'm studying up on her now. They were making more of a fuss over her than her friend Olivia!

Michele, thank you. I still - like Anne Frank - believe that people are, at core, good. There are a lot of pretty nasty young women who have found an outlet in the fashion blogging world. Very often, they will rise to the top - because they know how to play the game. I just don't quite understand what 'the top' is bringing them: for some, a certain degree of attention, some freebies, some opportunities.. it's a sad life, needing that kind of attention.

I help other bloggers in the same way that I help the friends - and strangers I encounter in my day to day life. I learned that from my parents.

And Mat Buckets: really curious what you meant about the arcadia thing. And yes: that's Carrottline, and she's got a wicked colour sense.