Cities 'n' Kane!

Excuse the ridiculous title pun there. I do these things to amuse myself!

Today, I left my native Canterbury for a 'field trip' with uni to London. I decided to wear my new Christopher Kane dress, which I bought on Saturday at work with my uniform discount (60% - so it only cost £20!)

These outfit pics aren't all that clear so here's a pic of the dress on the site in all its lacey meshy glory! All the Chizzle Kizzle stuff seems to have been drastically reduced so if I were you I'd snap some of it up!

It's very see-through down one side, so I wore my mesh body... Nobody needs to see my hoiked-up-to-the-pits tights. That pleasure is reserved for my special guy! I'm sure he would debate whether 'pleasure' is the right word for it..!

It's bias-cut with no hems and the fabric falls so wonderfully. It was a pleasure to wear! Mind you, at the time, I was effing and blinding about how cold I was traipsing across London bridge in the arctic gales with only tights and mesh to keep me warm... But, I suppose every great relationship has its ups and downs!

We went to the Showstudio.com Fashion Revolution exhibition at Somerset House, which I thoroughly recommend. It's only £4 entry with a student card. There was loads of nifty exhibits like telephones playing actual voicemails from Lily Cole, Irena Lazareanu and others with goss from Fashion Week... 3 gigantic sculptures of Naomi Campbell (created by Nick Knight) which had a little screen projected onto it for decorational purposes. Here's a before and after shot of my defacing...

I don't usually partake in blog-whoring activities but I just thought it would make a jolly good photo.

There were also fashion films playing, a live photoshoot taking place and a selection of Erin O' Connor's mobile footage of backstage at Paris Couture Week. Lots to sink your fashion fangs into! I definitely suggest going to see it if you haven't already!




Is what I've dubbed my latest retail therapy item. (EDIT 30/11/09: I decided to google my new term and unfortunately found this!!!!) I got them in Urban Outfitters' sale today for 15 quid.

I was thinking 'Do I really need these in my life?' when I remembered how jealous I always am of Isabel (Hipster Musings)'s fleggings and it was pretty much a no-brainer.


Here's my little homage to Isabel with the cutest sweater I could find in my wardrobe and some fake specs!

On another note, my pal's at Fitness Footwear sent me the latest Fitflops ('Gogh') to try out. They're a more wintery, less flip floppy version of the regular fit flops. Umm, is it obvious that I'm mega tired right now? Anyhow, the story behind these guys is that they have 'wobbleboard' technology' in the sole which claims to make you burn more calories per step and turn your gluteus maximus into a gluteus minimus! I was pretty excited to test them out because I am a snacking fanatic and any excuse to justify snacking is welcome in my life. ('Should I be eating half a pack of cookies with X factor? Well... I did burn a gazillion calories walking to work today so I've earned it!')
I did actually wear them out quite a lot, despite my friend Hannah telling me she'd never speak to me again if I wore them to uni. And it's true, they aren't exactly an oil painting but I think they're cute in an ironic way. Sadly I found them pretty uncomfortable. I'm not used to wearing shoes that are backless so the only muscle getting a work out was my poor ankles trying to keep the damn thing on. As for results... Well, that's interesting, It's probably mostly down to uni stress but I have lost 4 lbs lately and an inch off my butt and thighs, so who knows! I'll probably continue using them, I'm planning a bit of a health kick so it'd be nice to get a work out just from walking... Plus I find it rebelliously empowering to wear shoes that make absolutely no fashion statement at all. It confuses people, and I kinda love it.

They don't look that bad, right?!

Hope you guys have a lovely weekend. I'm going out with my work friends tomorrow night and it's going to get pretty messy so this is potentially the last blog I'll post with fully functioning kidneys!



Retail therapy

So my uni work I mentioned in my last post was all handed in yesterday. I almost had an all-nighter (got 2 hours sleep) and still didn't get all the work on my styling project finished, so god knows what grade I'll get. I have definitely learnt to NOT procrastinate. It's not worth the hassle. The stress and pressure of having so much work to do in so little time seriously took its toll on me. I'm talking stress-induced pregnancy scares, sleepless nights and spots! On the bright side, I lost 4lbs, but I don't recommend the blind-panic diet to anybody!

But today is a new day. I literally feel like I've been reborn after such a crazy few weeks! I've had a great day. I slept in til midday, had a lovely long bath, got my hair did (shaved sides!) and went shopping. I didn't get anything particularly exciting as my budget is miniscule!

I had a little dress up sesh to parade my new items. My boyfriend was glued to the xbox so its a self timed affair.

H&M baggy batwing top (it's that really distressed jersey so it's kinda see through)

H&M striped grey jersey top. I bought it with this skirt from Topshop in mind. Its covered in black matte sequins, so I was thinking of teaming it with this baggy top & hi-top converse or my DM's.

I bought this dress from h&m for £9.99!!! They had all different colours so definitely a good choice if you're shopping for xmas party outfits on a budget! I'm thinking of wearing it on saturday night, but after noticing its belly-accentuating properties in these pics, I might take it back...

Obviously because its 9.99, everyone will have one, so I'll need to put my own stamp on it. Here's an outfit idea:

I just had to have a pic with this hat before I take it back. Bought it for the shoot but can't justify keeping it because its £25 and it makes me look like I have fur for hair. But I love it, despite its flaws.

In other news, I probably put my 4lbs back on with my little snack feast me and my beau had tonight. I am a snack addict. Tesco is on my way home from work so I am always coming home with calorific bargains! If you haven't tried these Tortillas, they're 25p, go and buy them tomorrow. They'll change your life. And possibly your dress size if you eat them as frequently as I do.

Thanks for reading! Its fun to finally have the time to do a picture post!



Petit plaisirs

Sorry for the slight absence, I've been falling victim to my own procrastination and suffocating under my workload. I handed an essay in today and have a 10 week project to hand in tomorrow, so I have a long night on my hands, potentially an all-nighter!

The silver lining of my uni work was getting to write my postmodernism essay about the film Amelie. It was actually quite a pleasure to write, as I could waffle on about that film 'til kingdom come. I did kind of feel like I was cheating the system somehow, sitting in my Pyjamas watching the film and all of the extras on the DVD in the name of 'research'! I could never get bored of watching it. Without this film, I probably wouldn't have my permanent Parisian homage...

Researching the shit out of it did slightly spoil the illusion of the film though, for example learning that all of the scenes in Amelie's apartment block were filmed in Germany! And that she couldn't actually skim stones, they did it all digitally! And they had to digitally remove all of the dog crap off the streets! I'll just try and sweep these matters under the rug.

It's time for me to get back to this project but thought I'd leave you with a lovely clip from the film. The quality's not all that, but it's still lovely. It's about Amelie's 'petit plaisirs', the little pleasures she enjoys in life.

Do any of you have any Amelie-style quirks?

I have many, but they're not nearly as charming as Amelie's. For example I have to sniff crockery before I eat/drink out of it, to make sure it's clean! Now THAT would have been a good scene in the film. I think the writers missed a trick there. Forget skimming stones, it's all about sniffing stones! Haha, I've clearly been driven mad by exhaustion so I'll shut up now.



Cooking up a storm!

I only just clocked the Emma Cook SS10 collection. Much like her AW09 Topshop collection there's an Animals of Farthing Wood vibe, and that basically = iloveit. Well, I may be over-reacting a little... A number of pieces did have a bit of a mumsy, prairie feel. But the cute pieces definitely make up for that. And I suppose she can't stick animals on everything or she'd just be a one trick pony (!) But if I ruled the world...

Behold the owl dress!! It is beyond amazing!

For her new Topshop line, she has ditched pets in favour of people!

Oh, and another thing! Emma is having a sample sale in December, so join me for a rummage! Please god let there be boots.

Hope y'alls are having a lovely day. I have a 3000 word essay to research and produce before Tuesday. Lame. I don't even think I know that many words!



Cool-ish Notion!

Yes, I know I'm scraping the barrel of wordplay there, but it's a Sunday, and a hungover one at that, so forgive me!
After running some errands in town today I thought I'd pop into WH Smith and see if there were any magazines suitable for chilled sunday perusal.
The first thing that caught my eye was a glance in the 'hobbies' section, where I found that WH Smith had catered to my two loves perfectly. (Anyone that buys i-D will know that it's rather unusual to find it beside Cat magazines!)

Haha! Away from the hobbies aisle, the next thing that caught my eye was Notion Magazine, which I've never noticed before but a cover featuring a bespectacled Annie jumped right out at me! After a quick flick, I read that it was available digitally, so I ventured home to investigate (my debit card breathing a sigh of relief).
So here's the dealio. Notion is a bi-monthly music/fashion/culture lifestyle magazine. Less pretentious than Dazed, less sexy than Vice... A pretty good blend of intelligence and nonchalance. They had a page on typography (as well as a double page spread analysing brand logos in another issue) which I geekily relished.
There were some things that didn't interest me, like most of the music stuff, but it's nice to pick up a magazine I haven't read before. The tone appeals to me, as I hate magazines that are too stuffy and formal. For example, regular features 'What the fuck' and 'who the fuck' irreverently present the latest cultural happenings to the reader. There's not a huge fashion focus to the mag, but the fashion content is good. The styling of the Annie interview spread makes me happy inside & there was this cool sporty editorial in another online issue. AA Leotard and creepers... Why not?!

At a delightful 0 pounds and 0 pence online, it's definitely worth a crack!



Dye hard.


I've had this little unitard obsession for a long while which was always stilted by the fact American Apparel sell them for like £25... A little much for my purse strings. So imagine my intense joy when I came across a light grey one in their sale for £9 a month or so ago. I really wanted to use it in my uni shoot too so I was pretty excited about it.

I wanted a black one but just figured I'll dye it.. Can't be that hard right? Wrong.

I shelled out a fiver in C&H for some Dylon hand dye and the salt stuff you need for it and started the process in the kitchen sink at home. I didn't realise you had to stir that shiz constantly for 45 mins?! So I didn't. Admittedly, I did cut a few corners and just gave it the odd prod in between watching Come Dine With Me (♥). So when I dried it, I was pretty peeved to find the colour was so uneven. And not remotely black. Just patchy charcoal grey with big streaks from sitting on the radiator. FAIL.

I really wanted a black unitard for my shoot, which was looming, so I next spent £6 on Dylon 'EASIER THAN EVER' machine dye. I excitedly followed the instructions and retrieved the item from the washing machine when the time was up, and was SEETHING to find it was still bloody charcoal grey! And that's not even the issue, it was totally patchified. And had some proper splatter effects going on. Lame!

Has anyone else tried to dye something black? Am I missing some kind of secret to achieving the perfect black shade?

So, yeah. £21 down the line, and my bargain isn't looking so bargainous anymore... I'm stuck with a patchy (and a touch misshapen after all of the manhandling) excuse for a unitard. I guess this is what you get for trying to be a cheapskate and cut corners when really, it would've been easier to get a black one in the first place! Sigh.

The shitness doesn't show up that well on camera. I'll still wear the unitard, but after all this drama it's just charged with negativity and bad memories!

Dylon, thanks for bankrupting me whilst also ruining my unitard dreams. I hate you!



Riri and meme!

So all going well, I'll be shimmying away at a secret location on Monday at Rihanna's album launch in partnership with Nokia. It's a pretty big deal, as she'll be performing tracks from her new album 'Rated R' a week before its release, to a global audience (the event will be being streamed worldwide!)

If you want FREE tickets, have a little click on the widget. Let me know if you get tickets so we can hang out!! If not, check out the live stream of it. Check back here for pics and goss from the launch!



As if the Luella news wasn't bad enough...

I had to go and lose my debit card, didn't I? I had just spent about an hour organising all of the returns I needed to do from the shoot, and I went to double check I had my card before I hit the town and it was nowhere to be found! Cue an hour of frantically upturning my flat to no avail. Mega stressful.
Prior to this, I'd had quite a chilled day, watching Amelie with the director's commentary for a uni essay. I love loafing about eating snacks and watching DVD's in the name of research.

Loafing attire:

Tee - Henry Holland for Debenhams, Leggings - Blue Inc, Hat - Topshop Slippers - Primark

I never told y'all about my bra-fit at Debenhams. Debenhams kindly invited me along to have my lady lumps measured and get a lovely new set of undies. Any regular readers will know I'm a bit of an underwear fanatic so naturally I was on the next train to London!
A lovely girl called Jade was assisting me and she was fantastic! The bra set I wanted, I needed in the next size up but they didn't have it so I was feeling pretty dead inside about it, but Jade got me to put the smaller one on and with the joys of tightening the bra straps and adjusting the back, it turned out to be the perfect fit! So here, I present to you... the loveliest bra ever! It's by Floozie. Which is precisely what I didn't want to look like when modelling it for you lot, so I teamed it with My New Hat (that shall never be removed now I've learnt the joys of hiding grubby hair!) and some Docs.

Skirt - h&m via jumble sale Specs - Brighton Lanes, Tights - h&m Hat - Welded to model's head

I'm just in love with it. I have tried on tens of the Topshop longline style but can never find one that suits the, err.. Curvaceous bust! So I'm v pleased. And parading about in it has certainly cheered me up after such a hideous afternoon!

Hope you've have had a calmer Wednesday than me?



"Bartley shocks fashion industry as celebrity favourite Luella ceases trading"

This is the lamest news ever. Someone needs to hook my ultimate FAVE Luella up with some finances pronto! Luella, you can have my student loan and all my earnings from my 8 hour contract at Topshop. I've got your back.



Old New hat!

Sorry for my absence over the last few days, I finally had my photo shoot that I've been preparing so much for for a uni project (I had to devise and shoot a 5 page editorial aimed at Nylon, and style it all myself)! I'll be posting all of the final shots once I've finished the post production. Can't wait to share this thing that has swallowed up my life for the last couple of weeks!
I only got 2 hours sleep on Friday night because I was so nervous about the shoot yesterday, so I was sooo knackered after we'd wrapped at about 2pm. Even so, I went to a friend's cocktail birthday party. Apparently exhaustion makes you get hella drunk, hella quick and make some hella regrettable comments! It was all good fun though. My cocktail didn't win (it was a competition by the way). I think it was because I 'thought outside the box' and decided to do a non alcoholic cocktail (aka, I was too skint to buy booze..) So I used loads of fruit juices and had load of raspberries and blackcurrants in the bottom of the glass (AND I provided plastic spoons for everyone to eat their berries!)... It's a sad world we live in when individuality does not equal a cocktail competition win!
Anyhow here is what I wore, in my typical 'clothing is a billboard for my mood' manner... 2 hours sleep equals utter comfort dressing! And adorning of my new Topshop hat which I can't see myself removing in the near future.

(Btw, I am in my lounge, but it's what remains of the set for my photoshoot.. the lounge became a bedroom!)

Hope you've had a lovely weekend!



When Henry met Debbie!

Last night my partner in crime, Hannah & I nipped to London to check out the launch of Henry Holland's new collection for Debenhams, called 'H!'. We obviously didn't get the memo about Oxford Street turning on their lights at the same time, which we found out about when we were on the tube to Oxford Circus & the bloke came over the tannoy to remind us that the train wouldn't be stopping at Oxford Circus (our desired destination) due to overcrowding! A slightly chaotic detour ensued, but we got there in the end!

As soon as we set foot in the pinky/purple lit room, we felt at home! The designs were set out on mannequins around the centre of the room. For some reason, in all the excitement about attending the launch, I forgot that there would actually be clothes there. And the clothes were LUSH! And SO cheap! It makes it so much easier to write about this collection because I am genuinely lusting after 80% of it! Hence the annoying capitals and exclamations! That's just how I roll.

Join me on a trip to grainsville - courtesy of me forgetting my digital camera & having to use my mobile! What a fool.

I fell for this bikini! Ruffles are my life.
Hawaiian cropped cuteness!
All of the dresses were around £30!

This will be having an outerwear moment when I get my mits on it!
Why does awesome lining make me want something even more? It's not like anyone will see it!

I love this Parka! Only £40!

Yummy Rose & Lychee cocktails!

Henry chatting to the legend that is Hilary Alexander!

I met Henry and he was a lovely chap. I managed to resist my drunken urge to joke "Which one are you, John or Edward?! Loved the Britney cover!" which seemed like the greatest idea ever at the time. (Non-UK readers, if you don't yet know about 'Jedward', they are the joke of this years X Factor... and my guilty pleasure!)

(I wasn't actually dressed for the gym, I had skinnies and heels on too!)

It was a fab night and great to meet some of the people involved in creating the collection & organising the event.

The collection is out in February and I truly can't wait!