Nova Festival – year one!

Here at Nova, the best age to do a festival appears to be 7-11. Far from hiding in their tents from the interminable rain, these people have divided themselves into similarly-sized tribes, and are running amok, Lord of the Flies style, tying each other up, whacking stuff with sticks, playing with fire and going into trances whilst eating crisps.

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Festival checklist – the UK ‘get real, its raining’ version

Ironic, ‘festival fashion’, when you think about it. In reality, the list of options is really very limited, mainly to a cagoule and wellies.

Festivals – trouble ahead?

As I sit here in my little canvas pimple of a tent, hiding from the endless great rains of Summer 2012 at Nova Festival, I have to wonder why. Why do we do it to ourselves?

Penguins at Broadgate ice skaing rink, from the Time Out website http://now-here-this.timeout.com/2011/11/13/ice-ice-baby-top-5-london-ice-skating-rinks/

A guide to Christmas in London

Spending Christmas in the capital? Then STOP before you make any plans and read Lucy Granville’s essential guide to yuletide in the city.

Go wild, it’s good for you!

Wilderness Festival is a spanking new addition to the festival landscape. Held in Oxfordshire’s Cornbury Estate, the usual population of huge and beautiful trees and hoards of wild deer was added to by 10,000 or so be-masked festival goers for a relaxing weekend of eccentrically commentated cricket, fascinating talks about stuff you didn’t even know you would be interested in but now you are hooked, hauntingly beautiful music and possibly the most gorgeous, lake-based spa scenario outside of Switzerland, but with more naked hippies involved. But not too many.

Afternoon Tea for Fashionista’s

Tasty morsel of a story for you this sunny Friday – see you at the Berkeley! New short story by Mike McDonough For my mum’s birthday, I got her an Alexander McQueen dress, a Fendi handbag and shoes by Christian Louboutin. She found the dress delicious, the handbag divine and the sparkly stilettos literally mouth-watering. … Continue reading

Liberty: online roll-out going marvellously. Purrrr….

Liberty core site and blog (complete with magazine) always looks nice. Where the core site is resplendently, luxuriously purple, packed with attractive, magazine style ways-in, the blog is pared down, clean and uncluttered, with the branding sewn across the two by means of a simple logotype. An example of a) a holy grail-type job for a blogger … Continue reading

Festivals: a black hole for cash and a life’s obsession

Running a festival which is screwing you into the ground financially, while you obsess over delivering it with the responsibility of a King of a small but wonderful nation of people’s threated at every turn by evil armies of creditors, local authorities and insane weather conditions is a familar story to many festival organisers.

Tasty: Selvedge magazine

I adore this magazine so much that I got them free PR in the Independent that they are not even aware of. More of Selvedge later, but for now have a look at the new haberdashery additions to their Selvdge Drygood store.

Fashion meets the people head on, and the ultimate Christmas present idea for shoe lovers

The fashion industry has a natural inclination to get stuck in, which means the recession brings extra value for fashion lovers. Not all creative practitioners are in such a reciprocal, cyclical and constant conversation with their commentators and customers as fashion is. For many fashion designers, engaging with their markets is a joy not a chore. The future is bright for a part of the creative industries that has always known you must sell to survive and consumers are king.

Autumn interiors wish list

Chair – great fabric. ‘Ciprie Gi.vi.emme’ by Loris Riccio (1920) Poster advertising a 1920’s  face powder. A powder puff girl atop a ginormous powder puff, floating on a lake. What’s not to love about this cute poster? Por la boudoir de femme.   Dalliance, 41 Cross Street, London N1 2BB

Mosaic floor at 151 Upper Street

Exposed on Upper Street

Shopping continued: artisan value brought to DIY art via children’s playgrounds and fugly car design

ar·ti·san –a person skilled in an applied art; a craftsperson. Textiles, design, fonts. These things give me pleasure every day. Which is great, because I am surrounded by them. My enjoyment is enhanced by exploring what has gone before; drawing threads of design out of the fabric of the past and re-stitching them in to the now. Many of us want ‘retro’ and ‘vintage’. The nostalgia of the old forms is appealing, as by definition they are established, and hence are still in sight despite the march of time. Their for-gone flair can temper the wilder forays of our contemporary design landscape. They ‘work’ reassuringly as design, and can interrupt as a benchmark for style; grounding and inspiring us.

Risque merchandising trend continues!

When I spotted a bare bosomed mannequin in the window of New Look Brixton, I didn’t for a moment think I’d identified a new trend. But as Diesel unveil their own slightly more modest one-breasted interpretation of the theme, it seems I have. Who else is going to buckle under the pressure of these harsh … Continue reading

Late night tube encounters

These guys were on their way to the Slimelight at Angel, Islington. I love the way they are looking at me; very open and confident. They were surprisingly grounded for such lairy dressers. Click on the pic for a portrait of their leader.

Jo Broughton at Discourses

Jo Broughton exposes the faces of the recession

Jo Broughton is a fine artist who has established a name as a photographer over the past ten years, with portrait series such as My ex-Boyfriend’s Girlfriends, Virgins and Empty Porn Sets. You can read about her on her website http://www.jobroughton.co.uk, with a biography written by me.

So, you don’t want women your own age. Why is that?

Just checking out mysinglefriend.com to revisit the scene having been introduced to it about two years ago when a few of my single friends started to go on it in the hopes of meeting some nice chaps and chapesses. They had a few dates, had a few turkeys and went off the idea. Maybe one day they will return, once they have recovered from the horror of meeting ‘the general public’ that we are usually sheltered from in our more organic, ‘real world’ social networks.

Louboutins for sale!

Celebs and plebs alike go crazy for these now legendary modern classics, and if you have wanted to own a pair, you are lucky enough to be a 39 and you have some spare cash for an opportunity such as this, email me with your best offer.

Do not shop

Do not shop

Only very rarely. And when you do, love it. Go alone. Plan. Spend. Properly, as much as you can afford. Make friends with changing room attendants. Take a camera. Discover independents, off radar, markets, charity, sample sales, untrendy department stores. Treat luxury brand shops like Gucci, Prada, Chanel et al as a cultural outing in the manner of an exhibition or museum. Enjoy it all and the fact that it exists, without needing to own it. Take stuff home, try it with everything. Sit on it for a little while, see if you still love it a week later. And then return it to the shop. There are very few good shops. Be a good capitalist and don’t encourage the shit ones by buying rubbish.

Crotch rot, respect, and the importance of breathing

Stuff is there to facilitate life, not to get in the way of it by being crap at its job, falling apart , or going out of fashion. Clothes should allow you to roll in the grass, be allowed in to the club, to attract the right attention, and to be facilitated on the long meander, nightbus or minicab home.

The Britishness of shame and the benefits of bloggadiction

Professionally I sometimes feel a failure, sometimes a ravishing success. Blogging-wise, I just love to write. I have always loved the magazine format, and having a blog is like having your very own instant magazine to play with.

Just good.

Confident, beautifully proportioned, sturdy as she goes, on trend yet classic court shoe. From Hobbs. For sale obv at Hobbs and also the Mothership, otherwise known as Juan Louis, otherwise known as John Lewis.

Cool bags

Lost Property of London make these very cool bags which appeal on many levels – British made in recycled, tough and good-looking textiles like old bomber jackets and sacks.

Thank God we live in London so we can look like this

Sometimes an ad campaign can change everything. I have never noticed Oscar de la Renta before – until now. Oscar de la Renta AW2010 combines arresting, ink-pure colours, sassy styling, tweed and statement jewellery with a certain 1980’s/Dynasty trashy glamour, softened by fluid tailoring and all put together in a killer grown-up way that isn’t aging – unlike the penchant for 1950’s that is going on right now, where you see teenagers looking fifty in mid length furs, set hair and plastic gold.

Selected images from Jaime Perlman’s TEST fashion film event at LFW

Selected images from Jaime Perlman’s TEST fashion film event at LFW2010. Best in class? Cecilia Mary Robson. I want framed stills for my home.

Off to London Fashion Week this weekend, and what to wear?

To dress for a fashion meet, I always browse outfits in my mind’s eye, placing myself at the scene, to discover which one makes me feel most attitudinal. I need to feel casual, unfashionable, and a bit tough. It’s only a sartorial mindset; I am not about to nut anyone. Never start trying on as this leads to too much analysis and anxiety can creep in.

Mini’s and mini skirts: Barbour Index was a job for an independent woman in the 1960’s

This classic photo shows Patrick Barbour, founder of Barbour Index, with his army of glamorous ‘Barbour Index girls’ in 1967. My mother can be seen in the furthest top right corner, with her hands shoved firmly in her pockets. Being a Barbour Index girl was decent employment for a young woman in the 1960′s, ideal for launching adult life once college or leaving home was dealt with. Patrick was the Richard Branson of his day. Now 76, he founded Barbour Index with his brother just two years after his national service, making him almost certainly in his late twenties when he launched the company. According to the Independent, on his retirement in 1965, Patrick Barbour sold his Barbour Index shares for £22m in a fierce auction in 1999. French media group Havas won the auction, despite fierce competition from Emap, and Lord Hollick’s United News & Media.

New Look Brixton nails the slutty look

Sex sells at New Look Brixton as mannequins let it all hang out.

These old things that I love

These old things that I love: my Selfridges shoe story entry.

Pucci practice

If you want a fail safe, versatile and classy add to your wardrobe which will mean instant style-smarts every time, get your hands on something by Emilio Pucci.