Monday, December 13, 2010

weight watchers

I’m sure it’s not just me, in fact I’m almost certain that 90% of females do this once they’re old enough to think about things like weight and fashion – when I’m walking down the street I’m constantly comparing myself to the women around me.

If someone’s walking in front of me, I’ll do a quick evaluation: is she skinnier than me? Is she about the same size? And if so, does she look good in her clothes? Do I do it better? Should she be wearing that? Would I wear that? And so on.

I don’t think guys realise just how much women compare themselves to each other and how much time they spend thinking about what they look like. It certainly goes well beyond the mirror in the morning. Looking at a girl about the same size can be as critical to your image as what you see in reflections.

But how accurate are our perceptions? The other day a girl walked past and my partner commented on her fat legs and how she shouldn’t be wearing that skirt. I was like “which girl?”, because although I agreed that maybe the skirt was a bit short, I didn’t think her legs were any bigger than mine. But when I said that, I received a “you gotta be kidding me” look and a bit of a scoff. Apparently she was noticeably bigger than me, but as far as I could see, we were one and the same.

Perception is a huge thing for women – on the streets and on screen. I recently read a very interesting quote from the lovely Mila Kunis about her weight loss for the movie Black Swan. Mila reportedly lost 9kgs, taking her already slender 160cm 50kg frame down to 41kgs. For a start, let’s just say that’s ridiculous. That’s like a child’s weight on a woman’s frame. Interestingly, Mila made this comment:

“In real life, it looked disgusting. But in photographs and on film, it looked amazing."

“I could see why this industry is so fucked up, because... I would literally look at myself in the mirror and I was like, ‘Oh my god!’ I had no shape, no boobs, no ass ... all you saw was the bone. I was like, ‘This looks gross’.”

It’s nice to hear someone actually admit that. Remember when Angelina Jolie lost “all that weight” (cos at around 45kgs and 170cm tall there was SOOO much to lose) for the movie Changeling. Pictures of her on set leaked, showing her looking emaciated, weak and let’s face it, foul. But on screen she looked, while skinny, Hollywood normal. Surely she knew that she looked disgusting? And what did Brad Pitt think about it? I can’t speak for all men, but most that I know say they would prefer a proportionately curvy girl to a bag of bones.

OK, so not all weight loss is a misconception, a lot of people do it on purpose and some people do actually have some kgs to lose. But you can’t help think it was the relentless comparisons that women make to others that turned Kelly Osbourne into a bobble head after her move to Hollywood.

I think it’s hugely important to remember that you have to stay within the limits of your own body. I’d be happy to lose 3–5kg, and I certainly could do that without turning into skeletor. But it took me a long time to be happy with the way I look around my size 6 to 8 friends. I’m never going to look like that and trying to would be silly. I also don’t think my frame would support it. (I’d also have to put up with constant “where have my boobs gone?!” from my partner.)

So although I don’t think I’ll ever stop looking at other girls and sizing them up, you’ll also never see me turn down food just so I look slightly better on film. That’s what turning on an angle is for.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Jack of All Trades

Yes I know I write about music a lot, but it's awesome, maybe even more awesome than clothes. Except you can't wear music. Anyway, please do enjoy some clips throughout today's rant for your listening/viewing pleasure :)

A lot of the fashiony things Haze and I ramble about are inspired by actors and actresses, the wealthy wenches of the world. But lately I have been discovering a number of surprisingly good musical ventures fronted by these very same people. I guess we don't expect hollywood heart-throbs to possess any kind of talent other than looking good and being able to read lines. Having the ability to play instruments and sing well too? Now that just seems greedy.

You all know I'm a fan of Gossip Girl. I know the characters on it are entirely ridiculous for their age, but there are lots of shiny, pretty things! When I found out Little J Jenny Humphrey, AKA Taylor Momsen fronted a band, I cringed. Probably some bubblegum pop group that will make me want to hurl. Upon hearing The Pretty Reckless' first single "Make me Wanna Die" however, I was pleasantly surprised. Think a young Courtenay Love, who doesn't suck. That Taylor can sing, can growl, in a sexy rock'n'roll way that makes me totally envious.
Oh, it's probably been jacked up to sound amazing, I thought. She will sound terrible unplugged. Boy I was wrong. That growl sounds just as seductive in an acoustic setting. Aaaand she plays guitar! Damn that talented 17 year-old bitch!

When I watched the Notebook, I was expecting to be drowning in tears and doing that embarrassing "I-i-i c-c-can-can't t-a-a-t-a-l-l-k-kk' sobbing thing. YAWN. Sorry folks, the only thing that kept me watching was my darling Ryan Gosling. Yes he's a handsome man, and in my opinion a damn good actor. Imagine my surprise when I discovered he is in fact one half of a little band known as Dead Man's Bones. I had the same pre-conception about hearing Ryan sing as I did with Taylor.

Holy bejesus. 

Out comes this deep, crooning, baritone voice, reminiscent of a young Elvis Presley. And the music style is this random mash of ghosts and circuses and haunted carnival rides. It might not be everyone's cup of tea, but Gosling just scored about a bazillion brownie points in my books.

The Jack of All Trades syndrome goes both ways. I know Hazel and others will scoff at me for this, but I totally rate Justin Timberlake as a decent actor. Sure he makes wussy ass music, but you can't deny that he has a good voice (and some sweet dance moves). Not only does Timberlake do a good cartoon character (Artie in Shrek 3, Boo Boo in Yogi Bear), but he was also watchable in Black Snake Moan. And Alpha Dog? Hands down, I thought his performance was pretty damn awesome. Check him out as a young Elton John too:

We all know the crossovers aren't always success stories though. That idiot Lindsay Lohan should have shot herself before attempting to launch her music career. And J Ho oops I mean J Lo? Well. She's not even worth mentioning because she has about as much talent as a toe.

So, I hope today's rant has opened your eyes a little to how much talent some people possess. And if you know of any other hollywood-ites who make some wicked tunes, let us know, me and Haze are always keen to discover new sounds!

Monday, December 6, 2010

awkward moments

I’m so very looking forward to my holidays. This is mostly due to the fact that I will no longer have to repeatedly smile and say hello to people I do not ever converse with in any other manner. I am especially looking forward to people not talking to me in the toilet. What is it about being in a confined space with someone that makes it seem appropriate to make small talk? It’s awkward enough that people you barely know can hear you pee, why do they feel it’s necessary to chat to me.

I generally try to enter the bathroom when I know no one else is in there, and if someone is sneakily in the stall when I do get in there, I wait quietly, sometimes using the guise of blowing my nose or pulling the toilet roll until they depart and I can do my business unaccompanied. But then there are those who insist on asking me how I am or commenting on what it’s like outside.

My interest in such banal niceties is about as lukewarm as the inevitable pee that follows.

Imagine going home and having this happen! I would hate to think that someone would stand outside the bathroom while I go about my business and talk to me. I would tell them to piss off fairly promptly – so why would anyone else find this to be appropriate behaviour. There’s plenty of time to come and chat to me if you actually care to. Eight hours of it. I welcome any distraction from actual work!

Ok, so it’s polite to say hello to people when you pass them in the hall. I get it. I take part in such formalities because that’s what you have to do if you want to be friendly and polite. Participation in office etiquette is an obligation more than an option – especially if you want to get anywhere with the higher ups.

Just don’t oblige me in the bathroom.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Summer heats up

As summer heats up and the office is a cesspool of anticipation, humidity and irritability, what constitutes acceptable work wear?

 We’re getting closer and closer to Christmas and the summer holidays and most of us are getting edgy to gain a bit of colour before blinding the family with our pasty bods. But how far can you take your summer wardrobe to work?

We’ve discussed before (although a long time ago (The long and the short of it) – Debris has been running for over a year now!) the issue of shorts at work. Obviously this is not short shorts – but what is an acceptable length for a “work short” before you get into the stumpifying knee-length shorts or pseudo pants? It has been much argued between a few colleagues and only once have I managed to do it – with mixed results. (Do you remember? Work it) Just this week we observed a newbie wearing mid-length shorts but with footless opaque stockings underneath. After a bit of conference we agreed that it was acceptable but we would have gone for full tights. As an aside, can you get a tan through stockings? I would like to find out.

A few of the dresses I picked up to brighten my winter wardrobe have suddenly been rendered useless as work dresses – they were an acceptable length when paired with stockings, but the ol’ “bend over infront of the mirror” test has had them thrown back on the hanger on successive mornings. Tights were the “pants-ness” that made the length ok for work – they are now too short. I might get the “you look summery” innuendo once again.

So that’s the legs. What about arms? I tend not to wear sleeveless tops anyway because I am aware my upper arms aren’t as slender as they used to be. This is what happens when you spend 12 years holding your arms in ballet positions for hours at a time and then one day you stop and live the slothful and drink-fuelled life of a university student. The hardest job they had was holding up my head in lectures and raising glass to mouth every now and then!

Some “what to wear” sites suggest that no sleeves is acceptable at work – but only if it’s the grown-up sleeveless blouse type – that means no racer backs or spaghetti straps ladies!

I never thought I’d say this in reference to fashion, because guys have it SO so easy, but I do actually feel for the guys in the office at this time of year. What awful (and slightly sexist) law states that a man cannot get his legs out at work? Women are free to wear skirts or pants and keep themselves as warm or cool as they please – even get in a bit of tan time at lunch – but guys are chained to the pants leg.

I once raised this with a male member of staff and he (of “middle age”) said he remembered a time when it was ok for men to wear “work shorts” to the office. When did that go out? When women became more prevalent in the professions and some insecure CEO decided that men had to “wear the pants” at least in the literal sense? That certainly backfired!

So while women might have to ponder acceptability, at least they’re not sweltering in dress pants. Suck on that repression!

Monday, November 29, 2010

An Oxford Classic

There’s nothing like a quirky shoe to brighten up an outfit. I’m not going to go on too much about these. I’ve had a collection of pictures lined up for this post for a while now and haven’t really come up with a sufficiently witty and arousing post to accompany them.

What I will say is that I agonised for some time, looking at these first ones online. I loved them, but wondered if they were a bit wierd, but more and more I’m seeing oxfords or some variation of them on feets and streets around town.

Laces on a high heel might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but the fashion goes back a long way, and usually something so longstanding is a classic look that can be reinvented throughout the ages without looking dowdy or rehashed.

Some are labelled shooties, the ol shoe-boot mash up, some are a bit more strappy than laced – some even go for an open toe. Mine have fake laces and a quiet zip up the inside, which makes them very practical – and it means you don’t have to worry about your laces coming undone or getting broken, because you want to keeps those babies quite tight.

Quirky colours and patterns and contrasting panelling makes these shoes hot for casual or glam fashion, and the perfect transition from office to out.

Btw, I did buy the coveted shoes and love love love them.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The uninvited

I am, and always have been, something of a social outcast. Ok, that’s a lie – these days I am awesome. But I think people appreciate confidence and nonchalance more when you are older. That did not go down well for me at school. Not caring about getting into a clique is a sure-fire way to not get yourself deeply embedded in any cliques. Stating outright that you don’t give a fuck about people’s cliques because you are bigger than this stupid town – that’s a sure-fire way to get yourself hated. Literary humour and self-derisive satire apparently wasn’t a big hit either. But I digress.

I think in a way I have maintained an element of my outcastery in to my adult life, but it recently dawned on me that if I am left out of certain events, it is at least half my fault. That is to say, there is something I could have done about it, but did not, because of this weird sense of social convention that I stick to.

So here it is. I’m like a vampire – I have to be invited in.

I have assumed over the years that I have been looked over or left out of an event because no one outright asked me to be there. After explaining (complaining) to someone about this, I was responded to with “you know you’re always welcome, why didn’t you just come?”. Why indeed? Why didn’t I at least send a text to check?

I guess to me it seems awkward and a little bit desperate to ask someone to invite you to their thing. My enduring sense of nonchalance when it comes to whether people like me or not keeps me from doing such a thing. But in every other part of my life I am of the “if you want it to happen make it happen” persuasion. So what happened here?

Perhaps it is the great job my parents did in raising me that has enforced what I see as politeness and social norms that holds me back on this one. Or possibly the sense of being an unpopular child has lingered into adulthood and I just expect a door slammed in my face. However, I’ve grown into my skin enough to surround myself with people who like me, bad puns and all, and said doors are generally wide open.

Something to work on I guess. Self-betterment is never a bad thing. And neither is a challenge.

Do you wait to be invited? Or are you the type of person who just rocks up to someone’s house without even checking what they’re up to? And what are the social norms that hold you back if you don’t?

Monday, November 15, 2010

do these come with bacon?

Potato wedges. One of the tastiest most delicious melt-in-your-mouth meals I can think of. All that crispy baked goodness, smothered in melted cheese, sour cream, tomato sauce, and mixed in with sizzling bacon.

Excuse me while I go and clean up the drool.

YES I LOVE WEDGES.... when they're going in my belly. But shoe wedges? Uh uh, i'm afraid these get a tsk tsk from me. Somehow this shoe fashion just keeps coming back, and they never get any better. There are a few styles that I can admire from afar, such as the sleek black dress wedge, but lets face it, the majority of them are cork ridden and just shout "trailer trash".

Acceptable Wedges :)
I don't even understand the practicality of them. Sure, they may be a whole lot more comfortable than your classic stiletto, but they look far too casual to wear to work or out partying. Which really only leaves the option of prancing around on the street, strolling along the waterfront, or at home. And why would you bother wearing 'heels' in any of these locations? Well unless you're one of the SATC girls....

Unacceptable wedges :( UGH

This reminds me of a gift someone once gave me -  silver jandals...with a heel. A HEEL!!! Who came up with such idiocy? I can't even find a picture of them, that's how stupid they were.

Back to my wedge rant.

This season in the shops, the wedge has mutated into some kind of I'm-going-to-obliterate-your-feet-beast. The foot becomes lost in a mass of bulky black suede or a tangled web of strapped horror. I always picture Brittany Daniel playing that trashy white girl on Joe Dirt... she may be 'hot' by trailer park standards but that's not really saying much is it.

Usually I love a trip into Wild Pair, they ALWAYS have shoes to fit my carny feet and at a reasonable price. But this summer ... doing it wrong! I don't even want to look in the window at the moment because of the crimes in there.

Shoe Crimes @ Wild Pair
I'm not saying all wedges are wrong, in fact I just bought back a pair from Sydney. But they should be subtle and elegant, not like you accidentally stood in a log.

Now I want to eat wedges....dammit

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Drop it like it's... crotch?

Really New Zealand? We’re going there are we? Really??

Today Angeli walked into Supre only to be surrounded by drop-crotch/loose/harem pants. The first three square metres of shop was overwhelmed by the things. We’ve had this discussion before, have we not? I thought I had established a clear shift away from these monstrocities? Is nobody listening?

Apparently not.

As we walked past the first poo-pant encampment we cracked up. I think the words “ew, those pants” may have slipped from someone’s lips. And Then! Then some girl behind me says to her friend “oh I love those pants!”.


Maybe it’s a sign of aging, but ever since the famous $7.50 sale last year I have failed to find anything of interest to me in Supre. They used to have a good range of “crappy fast fashion for the youth”, general articles for work and a few “finds” dresses etc that were genuinely good. That just doesn’t seem to be happening lately. I’ve had more luck at Jay Jays recently – which I used to think was all teeny bopper tees and well, that was about all I thought – but they have some really cool dresses and skirts for like $40! Not just a million articles of the same ilk in different colours.

As per usual, my rant has steered away from my point.

The pants. I’m still not over the last rant on pants. But these ones are that much worse. This awful trend is affecting my gender. My people! I do not want to see you on the edge of this slippery slope! Supre is calling them “Summer Pants”. That seems like a pretty general term. How about Fugliness-which-hides-your-thighs-before-you-get-in-shape-for-the-height-of-Summer Pants?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

That's so...

Have you ever bought something just because it reminded you of someone’s style. Obviously a good sense of style that you would want to emulate – the problem is, people look good in things that you think “that’s so... them” because it is so them. Do you really think you can pull off their look? And get away with it?

While in Melbourne earlier in the year, I went into one shop which looked like it held stuff I could get at home. What the hell, I thought, it looks like pretty cool clothes and surely there will be some things New Zealand won’t get. I ended up buying this really cool Wrangler dress/top (shirty dressy thing). When I saw it I thought “that’s so kate*” and she always looks so cool. I’m totally going to buy this”. And I did.
*Kate's name is not actually Kate.

So I get back to Wellington, go to a party where ‘kate’ hangs out and lo-and-behold it wasn’t just a dress that looked like something she would wear, it was something she owned. That’s why it looked so her. What a knob! And as it turned out, she was jealous of my one, because I’d bought in a different colour, which was apparently much preferable to the one she already had.

Well that backfired. That’s a totally great “casual night out (but still looking good)” top that I can no longer wear to that particular haunt – and it’s a regular haunt, where I go to parties alot, so basically there’s a whole group of people that will never marvel at my lovely dress again.

Lesson learned.

Really? I think not. I’m always finding some new fashion muse who I think looks great and kinda quirky and edgy and therefore try to buy similar things. And that is where it fails. That person looks different. When people start trying to look like them, I bet they go right ahead and change their look – always one step ahead of the fashion game. It doesn’t matter if it’s a real person or celebrity – the reason they look so good is that it’s totally them.

I’m currently a huge fan of Alexa Chung. There are two problems with this. Alexa Chung is like a million miles tall and super super skinny. I am pretty average all round. Alexa Chung has shitloads of money to spend on designer clothes as they come out. I shop off the rack – six months after the British season. It’s never going to work.

Ok, so we can’t all be fashion pioneers. But there’s two ways to go about it. You can be a sheep. Follow fashion blindly and ignore that most things doesn’t actually work for everyone. Or, you can be a leader – embrace what is distinctly you and create your own style. Obviously you have to work with what’s out there, but mixing it up with vintage/retro pieces. Pieces with individuality. Pieces that are “just so you”.

What I wouldn’t advise is being too much of a leader. There’s only room for so many Lagy Gagas out there. When you’re wearing meat just to stay ahead of the pack, you’ve gone too far!

(Below I have shared some of my celebrity fashion muses – they're not always on the money and I wouldn’t wear everything they wear – but they're certainly ladies of great style that is their own.)
Rachel Bilson
Gwen Stefani
Kelly Osbourne
Alexa Chung
Chloe Sevingy

Saturday, October 16, 2010

This ain't the Wild Wild West

I was going to write this post months ago but somehow never got round to it. Thankfully, it's still relevant due to fashion trends being retarded! DENIM DENIM DENIM. It's everywhere! And it makes me want to run into the shops tearing up mannequins!

Denim belongs in one place - on the legs. Jeans - great. Denim cut-offs - sure. But anything beyond ankles or waist is just bad. There is one particular shop on Lambton Quay that I cannot stand looking at any longer, because the window display is advertising not only denim, but denim ON DENIM. YUK! And the irony is, the shop is Just Jeans. Well shop, I think you should do as your name suggests and rein in the meandering denim situation! Burn that awful full length denim dress! Melt down that tacky denim waistcoat!

Too much of anything is bad, we've said it before, so why is it suddenly ok to plaster yourself in stonewash?

Meet Woody. He is a (albeit fake) cowboy. But do you see any denim on denim action going on here?
I don't think so. So if the cowboy's aren't going there, neither should we.

I was somewhat freaked out yesterday while waiting for my fatty lunch to arrive. While flicking through an Australian Vogue, I stumbled across what is usually my favourite part of a magazine - the part where they take a trendy look and break it down so as to make it accessible to us plebs. But no, this was all wrong. 'How to work the cowboy look'. UGHHH. God forbid I ever see someone walking down the street in blue jeans, brown cowboy boots, denim waistcoat and a cowboy hat! And the tassles, well don't get me started, that's a story for another time.

As much as this 'trend' has featured this year, I haven't actually seen anyone (yet) committing such crimes. But summer is on it's way, which means a fresh new bunch of school graduates enjoying their new uniform-free lives. If you see any shredded denim scattered on the streets of Wellington in the following months, you'll know the fashion police (i.e me) have been on duty.


Friday, October 15, 2010

Confessions of a shopaholic

Wow, for a start here, I’m surprised that the word shopaholic is not posing any problems for Word – no squiggly red line – and we all know how Word loves its squiggly red lines.

Anyway, I’m very glad that summer is slowing reaching our shores. Not just for the stocking-free legs and leaving-behind of coats, but for the safety of my money.

I’m extremely averse to spending my lunchbreaks in the staffroom at my work. It’s an awfully small room with acoustics like an empty tin can (for really small people) – and then there’s the people. I have nothing against my colleagues, it’s the closeness of them in such rooms that I cannot stand. Well that, and there’s just some people that don’t understand “don’t talk to me” body language. Quiet lunch is not in this room’s vocabulary.

So what do I do? For a while there I took lunch at my desk – though this poses problems of its own. Not only does it mean another hour of sitting on your ass, it also seems to be an invitation for every moron that chooses to ignore the sandwich in your hand and come and give you work to do. So I like to go walking at lunch.
I generally buy my lunch anyway so I have to go out and find something to eat. This disposes of about 15 minutes including eating time (I’m a very fast walker and eater – perhaps slowing down would solve some of my problems). Wanting to take the full hour that I am entitled to I find myself wandering Lambton Quay. Not only is it under cover – vital on a wintery Wellington day – but there are things to occupy my time. Namely shops.

Herein lies the problem. I am a notorious compulsive shopper. I walk into a store thinking “I’ll just kill 5 minutes looking around”, but these darn stores! Stocking items I like and want! Being relatively affordable so I think, “owell, I can just get this and it will be no problem...”. $40 here, $60 there, what’s the difference right? I have disposable income.

I also have a wardrobe brimming with clothes and shoes. I can barely move the hangers anymore. There are dresses in there I forget about because they’re so closely hung, if there’s not an inch of material poking out the front it gets lost in the depths. We’ve discussed this before. But it’s so hard to see something totally cute and walk away from it!

Often I pick it up, totally kidding myself, thinking “if I just try it on it will kill another few minutes”. “Just try it on” is not in my vocabulary. Trying on generally means swiping card in my world. Only if it turns out that this item looks completely hideous on me does the effort of trying on go without clutching for wallet.

Wait! I suddenly think, maybe that is the answer – don’t take my wallet with me! Unfortunately I know myself too well – that will only result in a painfully drawn out purchasing process, where I anguish over the garment, the wanting increases, and I return the next day to retrieve the left-behind soldier. God forbid if it should be gone! What a fool I was, thinking I could leave a size 10 on the rack when there was only one left!

And so on. You know how the story goes. So summer! My dear friend! In summer I will happily take my lunch down to the waterfront or to some grassy green and sit there in the sun until it’s time to return to work. I can take a book or listen to my ipod and be quite content in a break well spent. As opposed to a break over-spent.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Wellington welcomes Topshop

Six months after opening the doors (and quickly selling out) in its Auckland store, Topshop has finally made its way to Wellington. You would not believe my excitement when I read the news. Feelings of “bloody Auckland getting all the good shops mutter mutter” and “well it’s about time” were tsunami’d by excitement. Who can I tell? I thought. Who is at work at this time that will appreciate the news?
It didn’t take long to find someone! And after a bit of meercatting the news soon spread.

Topshop “opens” in Wellington on Saturday (16 October) as a line within the Karen Walker store on Wakefield Street. This caused three slight snuffs of the fashion flames that were a-burnin. Firstly, this means it’s only a selection of items. They will be selected weekly by Karen Walker. For me this says it will be some of the more expensive lines (in a Stuff interview, KW says it will be an “ultimate edit of the best of Topshop”. As I read that line, dollar signs began to replace the letters.

Secondly, a weekly turnaround is not a lot of time to get down there and get the things you want while they are in stock – will there be regular updates on the Karen Walker website? And then adding to this, the store is on Wakefield Street. This is relatively far away for me. I don’t care about the rest of you or where you work. This about me! I can’t get down to Wakefield Street and back in my lunchbreak. I work on the Terrace – my domain is generally Lambton Quay or maybe as far as Cuba for a special mission, usually on a Friday when my lunch hour is fairly liberal. This means a Saturday mission. The line is replenished on Tuesdays, I can get there on Saturdays... you can see my dilemma.

This weekend the store within a store opens and KW will be stocked with only Topshop clothes. I can only imagine something from a movie scene, crowds practically busting down the doors to get in, the racks emptied in a matter of minutes. I’m taking my heaviest handbag so I can smack some pushy fashion bitches down. Take no prisoners! This is war.

So, despite these things (most of which pertain specifically to me), this is a huge win for Wellington! Thank you Karen for bringing the greatness that is Topshop to my world. I’m sure you will all be hearing a lot more about it post-weekend fashion frenzy.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

investment boots

Why is it that when you say the words “investment boots” to a man they snigger as if there is some joke. Maybe they realise that they’ve missed the joke but still laugh in a naive attempt to cover up their lack of knowledge. But investment boots are a real thing, and no laughing matter. Any woman will nod approvingly, giving total justification to your (possibly) irrational spend-up. They know what you’re talking about. They know, because they’ve been there, seen the price tag, laboured over the decision for a day or so, and marched right back into that shop with credit card in hand.

Debris readers, I give you my investment boots. *satisfied smile*

Can you imagine my delight when I saw the style appearing in Vogue’s 2010 September issue. Not only did I get a bargain buying boots just before spring, but their inclusion in America’s fashion bible for the upcoming months mean they style is going to swing back into our winter next year. And I will be waaaay ahead of the pack. Ah satisfaction. And endorsement - from none other than Anna Wintour. I am the cat that got the cream.

I’m presently the cat that got the cream and found it so good it went right back to its day-old biscuits. These boots are so wonderful, so pristine and leathery-smelling that I’ve only brought myself to wear them four or five times. Of course now, the days are getting longer and hotter, and I can relax in the knowledge that my boots are waiting for me. Looking lovely, garnering jealousy from visitors I invite to gaze upon them. I have them. They are mine.

The look is something a bit different. I took some informants with me on the second viewing and the response from them was not what I had expected. Not the response you want when you’re about to spend over $400 on something. They weren’t so sure. Were they right for me, would they make my ankles look fat, wasn’t there something else I liked? I took in their words like a dagger through the heart. Maybe I wasn’t going to walk out of the store with my precious after all?

Fortunately, I came to my senses and bought them. It didn’t matter what the people said. I was in love. And the boots weren’t for anyone else. They were for me. And they are so me! (Something we will discuss in the not-so-distant future.)

It’s a hard thing, finding boots. I went to Melbourne with the distinct goal of buying some and I failed. I did buy some brown leather boots as planned, but they weren’t the right ones. I’d come to the end of my shopping tether and was damned if I was going to leave without buying brown leather boots in some shape or form. And my stubbornness saw them pawned off on Trade Me for much less than I paid for them – and therein lies the fail.

The other problem was the boots that they were meant to replace. I love these boots. They had served me well for two and a half years. How could I even think about replacing such loyal friends? And why can’t shoe stores just stock the same boots for a few years running? Or sell them in two packs for the forward-thinking shopper.

Unfortunately it had to be done. But the result was amazing. A True Investment. No sniggers allowed - Anna Wintour will not allow it.

Friday, October 1, 2010

rant on pants

I usually leave men’s fashion to the experts – their girlfriends (I kid, I kid!). Most guys seem to know what they’re doing but things have been going awry for more than a year now. There is an issue that must be addressed. It’s obviously something that is mainly affecting today’s male youth – already a bunch of skinny-jean wearing floppy-haired saps with questionable sexuality – but this one’s gone too far. Somewhere between winter’s skinny jean and summer shorts a fashion was born.

Like a mongrel cross-breed of bike shorts and denim, this gross miscarriage of fashion should never have occurred. And unlike many fashions that try and fail, this one has somehow slipped through to a second season. If you ask me, and many other readers, it should have been aborted long ago.

I’m talking about skinny denim knee-length shorts. Possibly the gayest-looking male fashion ever. And I don’t mean that in an unintentionally anti-gay “that’s so gay” way – I mean it in a “it makes you look like you are gay” way. Misguided gaydars are blipping all over town. So stop it. Stop the madness right now!

The uptake seems to be worse amongst youthful mods who think coloured plastic sunnies are the height of cool, synthesised voice makes the song, and Kanye is god. Even He’s managed to maintain a certain looseness and softness to the fabric of his short pants and I applaud him for it. Although that’s not saying much – these days I would applaud him for being any less of an asshat than his usual douchey self. But I digress. This fashion madness seems to be confined to those between the age of 15 and 25. If I saw it on anyone over the age of 25 I would be seriously concerned about their capacity for mental growth. We can forgive mistakes of the youth.

For some reason the worst case scenario is the light wash skinny variety, although I can’t give any credit to those slightly looser, darker and with the uber wanky upturned cuffs. Upturned cuffs are generally for when your pants are too long my friend – what are you doing out there? – wading through knee-high water all day? Why would you ever need to turn your cuff up at the knees? And if your shorts are long as to rub your knoees - buy shorter shorts!

And then there’s the general skinniness of them all. The whole point of shorts is comfort in the summer. A bit of breeze up the leghole that pants can’t offer. Do you really need your junk pressed awkwardly between flesh and unrelenting denim in the hot summer months? Why would you do that to yourself?

There is a recurring theme here people and it is “why?” Why? Why? Why? And why?