In my second year at college I had my first real boyfriend. It was a a hugely satisfying and fun-filled relationship that lasted an entire 12 months. I learned about trust and intimacy from this person. I also learned that our bond of intimacy and attraction was a fine and delicate thing and that a mere chopping of my locks could threaten the union to its foundation.
My Transport Management studies (don’t ask!) was a shoddy provider for my vast and rapidly changing interests so I turned to Vogue. Within the pages of its glossy lovlieness, circa Feb 1992 I spotted the most exquisite and edgy short hair do. The quest began for a creator worthy and capable of its execution. There in the mirrored halls of Lunatic Fringe he appeared. A mythical beast brandishing a salon cape. The intoxicating blend of his insouciant manner, his quiet confidence and laid back professionalism put me at great ease. Inside of ten minutes he had achieved the seemingly impossible. With no muss and sadly little chat, his skillful hands had adorned me with the exact look I had requested.
It really, really suited me.
I returned to the same salon about four months later and there was no trace of him. Thus was born my overreaching some might say Freudian longing for a stylist that I could both admire and trust.
The following lunchtime I showed up in the college canteen alive with the excitement and confidence that the new cut bestowed on me. Admiring glances and smiles of approval greeted me as I passaged through to our corner in the back. I did that thing: you know the rom-com move where someone clasps their hands over their beloved’s eyes and then reveals themselves to heightened surprise. The initial look on his face said he didn’t recognise me, then came the the blunt truth that he delivered with Hemingwayesque succinctness
“I don’t think I fancy you any more”
It was a surprise alright.
We managed to work through it with the employment of many a tight jumper and short skirt. Evidently these made up a little for the loss of my flowing feminine tresses. We broke up 6 months later when my commitment started to flag. Time and experience proved he was not the one.
On numerous occasions since I have cut my hair short but the awareness has remained. The path of the short haired woman is a great but occasionally daunting one.
I had to photograph Aimee as she possessed such an exquisite femininity and old world beauty. Here she stands in her workplace The Vintage Emporium, Brick Lane. London.
I still frequent thrift stores but did so more in the past for many reasons. The trickle down economy may be a myth in the larger sense but its a fact for the second hand shopper. I made hay while the sun was shining which I would would say peaked in 2009. Thankfully I bought enough to last me several years and much of it I sold on.
I bought a lot of beautiful things as I had sense it would not last and I was right. Nowadays charity shops are filled for the most part with rows upon rows of de-tagged Penny’s and New Look fodder. I still come across the occasional gem and I keep my hunting instincts sharp by only making a purchase when my need is great.
Thrift shops include flea markets, charity shops, second-hand or vintage outlets. Thrift shopping is something I have a real talent for, it can not be denied! A woman said to me recently
you won’t be lucky to find something as nice as that in a hurry
referring to my snazzy sneakers. I guess not everyone is lucky in that way so I did not share the words of the voice in my head that said I find beautiful things for next to nothing all the time.
To get things rolling I shall start with a possible all-time favourite and aforementioned marvel; my ghetto fabulous, endorphin stimulating, pan-generational Cameo pants. Since unearthing these extraordinary leggings in a basket at the hugely popular Dublin Flea Market some two years ago I have received an endless channel of compliments, comments and enquiries all of a most positive nature. Last Thursday for example they were appreciated by two members of the fairer sex: one a pensioner the other a two-year-old.
These could be the love of my life or at least a major affair and I can envision the day when I’ll recall them wistfully to myself. Either that or they go the distance and I am prancing about a la Westwood in them at seventy.
It is rare for me to get such mileage out of a piece of clothing and there are likely be many more words on the subject because as Michael Jackson quite rightly pointed out back in 1980, love needs expression.
Exciting Evolutionary Advances in Summer Dressing.
I wrote this back in 2012 and think it is more than worthy of a post here.
A new species of fashion elite has emerged from the swampy summer wilderness. Fluctuating conditions in the atmosphere have seen an evolutionary development causing experts and enthusiasts to flap wildly in their hothouses grasping frantically at headlines and theories to explain the development.
Rare sightings of the female fabulousia (bold and brave fashionistas renowned for their remarkable adaptability and striking appearance) have been reported sporting a hybrid of water and land apparel. Swimsuits have moved away from the shores and rooftop pools and have been cropping up in all kinds of unlikely environments. It seems the comfort and flexibility of a one piece bathing costume is now being celebrated on dry land in a manner experts never anticipated. A Spandex-clad torso provides the wearer with a form-fitting base enabling her to navigate the sartorial summer terrain with stealth and confidence. The swimsuit’s team playing amphibious attributes solves all manner of dressing dilemmas while providing a flattering bodycon silhouette that is advantageous in almost any situation.
Specialists are labeling the trend as Amphab.Teeming the bathing suit with non-beachwear has resulted in a contemporary aesthetic that is relaxed and athletic. I am in love with the contrasting textures of this ultra modern look. The return of the one-piece bathing suit is already big news this summer and it fits in beautifully with the seventies aesthetic.
The multi tasking nature of this look means it works equally well at night or during the day. Rolled up blazer sleeves, high-waisted slacks and water friendly jelly sandals will ensure you don’t slip up in daylight! Nocturnal fans can add a slinky tuxedo jacket, some gold bangles and wedge heels.
I have bee having a lot of fun with this project. It is a nice change to be creating something in a completely new fashion. It is pure play. Play at work which has always been my dream.
It is challenging and amusing to do the recordings. You can hear me laughing once on almost all of them.
Mr Impossible is a high priest of the dark arts as are most of his cohorts. It only adds to the appeal. Mr Impossible is so impossible that he transcends the formula. His character does not have an arc because he is the the full embodiment of an ascended master. A miracle worker in priestly purple. As shamanic figures go he’s got it all really.