Monday, March 28, 2011

Week 3 - PHOTOS

*Oh crap now she's done two posts since the challenge, while I've been uber slack and not kept you peeps entertained. Anyway, here's what I wrote several eons ago:

Thanks for posting Haze, now I can add my two cents without looking like I'm a giant camera whore taking over Debris!

Day 11

Day 13

Day 14

Day 15
God knows what I wore on the Twelth Day of Christmas the true love must've stolen my memory cause I sure as hell can't remember!

I agree with Hazel, I finished the challenge with six skirts I never even wore... so could have easily done another week but pah, I think we proved our point! And yes, what will we do with the information we have gathered from this fun experiment? 

I may have gone out on the last day and bought a new skirt.... *shifty eyes*

Shoosh!  It was only $25 from Dotti! That's a bargain and a half!

But seriously, it has actually been extremely helpful seeing my entire wardrobe in pictorial form as it made it damn obvious what colours I have too much of, and what my wardrobe could do with in future. I need to stop buying purple. And grey. And beige. And clothes OH did I say that?? Wash my mouth out.

It was also a good way to work out which clothes you truly will NEVER wear. I mean if you don't wear them in desperate times you should probably get rid of them...

Now that it's cooling down a bit I have re-acquainted myself with the abandoned winter corner of the wardrobe. Long cardi's and scarves that I have been pondering over suddenly have a reason for being again. Yes the cold is depressing but it's a little exciting to have a different bunch of clothes to bust out. 

On a final note. I saw a french girl a few weeks back strutting down Lambton Quay wearing a denim jacket, denim jeggings and blue suede boots...which may as well have been made of denim. So the Europeans aren't as trendy as they're cracked up to be...

bag it!

It’s always difficult predicting trends for the New Zealand seasons because we are so far removed from the Northern Hemisphere’s fashion seasons. I use the term “predict” loosely. If you follow any form of celebrity blog or watch reality tv and can remember what you have seen from six months ago, you’re probably going to be on the money. We generally get the US and Europes fashion leftovers, ie their Winter 2010 (as seen in December 2010 will be our Winter 2011 – happening now in a cold snap near you.

Stockings have once again become a staple of work wear and until they get the air conditioning set up for the cooler months I have considered long sleeves. It is unfortunate when cold mornings emerge as gorgeous autumn days and you’re walking your way to sweat stains at lunch [Gross, I repeal that] because you were bundling up for winter. But I digress.

NZ often ends up in a bit of a mish-mash of fash in winter because the trend-spotters will be bringing elements of the (Northern) 2011 down under and adding the necessary warmities. That’s right, I made it up. But one thing you can count on prevailing whichever hemisphere you’re in is accessories. Today, we’re talking handbags.

As the prairie-girl look hovers for the Spring 2011 season, we’ll be seeing a distinct style of handbags come in vogue. Again, loosely termed, because I think the look is classic. The hard-edged chain strap and quilted bags are moving out and gorgeous vintage-style leather satchels are in. This is where you can do vintage without a second thought.

Although you will see many updated versions in bold and breezy spring colours (just the thing to brighten up (generally darker) winter wear) the classic brown leather satchel will always remain a firm favourite.

The satchel is a great compliment to the dreamy prairie girl look because it brings the floaty fairy look back to earth. Whereas the thin chain strap might have been lost amongst 90s-inspired floral prints, a decent leather strap and solid colour block of the bag will pop.

If you’re a vintage die-hard, you’ll probably already have something similar or you’ll know where to go to get one second-hand. Otherwise, I “predict” the satchel will soon be making its way into any priced fashion house near you.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

in retrospect..

I always have a quiet chuckle to myself when I see women wearing “fashionably vintage or retro” clothing when it’s obvious they are unaware of the fashionability of the outfit and just haven’t stopped wearing it since it was originally in fashion. They are easy to spot.

Most often you will see these closet hoarders sporting 90s dresses and skirts (long, floaty and generally shapeless – particularly with a floral print). You might, at first glimpse, think that she is so on the money wearing a swing dress or button-down skirt, but then a memory forces the awful truth upon them. You envision primary school photos where your teacher was wearing the exact outfit. If the wearer was more fashionably-adept, they would have ditched the old version over a decade ago and updated their styling for today (with a generous amount of other stylings inbetween). But somehow the items have remained in the offender’s closet for all eternity (ok, 20 years, but that’s beyond eternity in fashion years) until it reverts back to “in vogue” in the fashion cycle.
Unfortunately for said wearers, rehashed styles or vintage-inspired clothing takes the idea from a vintage piece and modernises it – a fresh take on an old recipe. These ladies are sporting cheese fondue on brown and orange dinnerware.

Vintage or retro styling should be done with careful consideration. Whether you have a for-real vintage piece or something vintage-inspired, it’s important to keep the rest of your styling up to date. Wearing multiple vintage pieces at once could result in looking like you’ve just inherited granny’s closet. Contrasting a vintage dress with (for example) a legging and statement modern shoe can take your look from op-shop outcast to fashion forward. Even something as simple as adding a modern belt can update an older piece. Alternatively, keeping the rest of your look very simple (ie, plain and up-to-date shoes/accessories that don’t draw attention) take your vintage piece into the limelight.

Vintage deserves to be the focus of your outfit. Don’t rain on its parade.

I think the younger you are the more you can get away with. If you’re wearing a full-on vintage or retro outfit it’s obvious you haven’t been pre-emptively storing it since you were 2. You can probably go all out. If you were an adult when the item was fashionable the first time around, proceed with caution!

Sushi B! or not to be

I finally took the time out of my usual shopping-mission lunches to stand around for half an hour (ok, I exaggerate, let’s say 10 minutes) to see what the fuss about Sushi B! was all about.
You’ve probably walked past the patient people lining one side of Woodward Street yourselves and, unless you’ve been there, wondered why they would do such a thing when there were at least three other and faster options nearby. I used to wonder the same about Midland Sushi, but their line is nothing compared to this, and I bet it’s even smaller now that Sushi B! is there for the connoisseurs.

Connoisseur I may not be, infact I am probably the worst candidate to review a sushi bar considering that I do not favour seafood, but I am discerning consumer (of both foods and valued goods). I eat sushi at least once a week - I’m currently trying and failing to remove bread from my diet, so it has been more than once a week recently, I mean, if not a sandwich/burger sandwich/wrap then what? – but you will find me most frequently at the counter at St Pierres.

Now I’m not a complete ignoramus. I am aware that St Pierres is a chain. It’s not the only sushi place I have been to, I have frequented genuine sushi bars like Shinobi and Yakitori and the place with the little train (love it!) and I have watched the sushi chefs sear and roll infront of my eyes. But if they run out of your favourite at St Pierres they will do that for you too. It’s the consistency that I love. I get the same double avocado tasty tuna every time and I am always pleased with it. Not only that, but I enjoy the quantity to quality to soy sauce ratio that SP offers.

I realise that your sushi is not supposed to be swimming in soy sauce, but when all you get is the little fish to cover at least six pieces (save the ones with Japanese mayo, which are divine in their own right), you might find yourself high and dry.

On the upside, the pieces I had were lovely. I tried to be a little adverturous, otherwise I’d be filling my tray with chicken and tuna pieces and looking like an amateur, so (as well as chicken and chicken of the sea) I also got a deepfried crumbed prawn and a “crab” piece. And for a non-seafood eater, I rather enjoyed them.

I cannot, however, rationalise the wait, the price ($8.something for six pieces) and the insufficient sauce into a positive recommendation. There are some things you just have to try to be sure that you’re not missing out on something awesome, and try I did, but for me I was left with a disappointingly short amount of time to eat my lunch and a somewhat unsatisfied feeling.

The other thing I did not enjoy, apart from the waiting itself, was the exposure of the wait. I walk past it almost every day and wondered for a long time what those poor souls were waiting for. Today, I was subject to the scrutiny of passers by. I caught a comment by one lady to her friend “…in Wellington they’re prepared to line up for anything.” Another guy (an asian guy nonetheless [no wait, this could be totally racist]) took out his PSP and took a photo (or video, who knows?) of our line. Is it that out of the ordinary? Surely Wellington or New Zealand is not the only place where this happens? Or is it that [again, blatant stereotypical racism ahead] that there are so many “legitimate” sushi bars in Japan that there is no need to line up for it. Perhaps they would line up for a sausage roll and a chip butty?

Monday, March 7, 2011

nrw challenge - week 3

Finally rounding up the challenge. It was a painful but enlightening experience. I truly believe I could have gone another week, however I was starting to wish desperately for cold or rainy days because some outfits rely on stockings to make them work appropriate.

Not only that but I had bought a couple of new things that I really wanted to wear and couldn't without breaking the rules. Needless to say the very next week they were brought out for all to see.

Let's see what week three gave us...

So now I know I have too many clothes, what exactly am I going to do with that information? Well it hasn't changed my shopping ways that's for sure. I got dressed to go out at the weekend and wore pants for once (I'm usually all about the dresses, but I just love those $30 "jeans" you can get from Glassons at the moment, and they finally had a 9 in black. Seriously, it's taken about three months for me to score some before they get snatched up.) And anyway, I came to realise I had NO nice tops to go with my jeans that weren't already relegated to the work wear pile. So of course I had to go out and buy a couple of new tops.

Wow. It is HARD to find a nice top that isn't a singlet. If I could wear sleeveless tops I'd be spoilt for choice, but sleeves are hard to find. Luckily, on thatn mission I discovered that Jeans West is actually quite a good shop. I've never really been in there before and assumed it was overpriced shit or cheesy t-shirts, but it's actually quite good for "casual cool". Plus! If you sign up for membership, you get a $10 voucher. Now that's incentive.

On the casual cool... I must say, this is usually the look I go for at the weekend, and I always thought it went down pretty well. I think maybe it's what people expect of me - I'm certainly not the type to dress up to encourage guys, already having a super awesome boy. But, this particular weekend, I decided to pair the super skinnys with the heels that the boy bought me a couple of christmases ago. (These are some seriously gorgeous heels. Super chic, timeless, and... he bought them without any prompting, hinting, or without even asking me my size. One word... Keeper.) So anyway, I wear the heels thinking maybe I'm a bit overdressed for the usual house party, but the prospect of town later made me do it and besides, they looked damned hot. And ALL night people were complimenting me on how good I looked, some with absolute shock, like "you can look that good?" and I realised that perhaps I've been underselling myself all along. Who doesn't like to be told they look great right?

So maybe casual cool isn't doing me the justice I deserve. Perhaps the fear of overdressing has kept me from looking my best at the weekend, when all along I could have been wearing my favourite things and getting a confidence boost at the same time.

Some things deserve to come out of the closet!