Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Links a la Mode

It's been a while since I submitted a link to IFB's weekly Links a la Mode, so it was nice to be included in the final roundup. I was also really pleased to see in the comments that some people had taken the time to read my interview with Anna Wintour.

Do take a look at the rest of the posts from this week if you have a spare minute. I've bolded some of my favourites!

Links à la Mode: March 26

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Sunday, 22 March 2015

Nothing New Challenge: Meeting Anna Wintour

What do you wear to meet the most powerful woman in fashion? It's a conundrum which I imagine is enough to get any fashion writer's heart racing. But wait, I don't think you fully understand my predicament yet. What do you wear to meet the most powerful woman in fashion when you're halfway through a challenge where you can only buy second-hand clothes, and you have very little money and even less time to go shopping?

The only real approach is to find something you already own and hope for the best. In this case, I was preparing my interview questions and fretting over whether my dictaphone might run out of battery, so I had to go for a relatively simple option. This silk dress is originally from Guess, but I bought it for £7.99 in a charity shop in Devon several years ago. Since then it's been a favourite of mine, as it can be quite casual but is easily dressed-up. The shoes are a £1 buy from a car boot sale.

As it turned out, this hurried choice turned out to be a good one, as when we met Anna complimented me on my "pretty dress". As you can imagine, I was pretty giddy after this.

Credit: Roger Askew

I've been wanting to write this post for a while, as a kind of companion piece to my interview with Anna which was published in The Oxford Student. I tried to convey in my write-up how pleasant and charming I found the woman herself; so many people have asked me what she's really like, obviously suspecting that the Ice Queen persona is the true Anna Wintour.

I find it very strange that people are so quick to judge someone when they've based their impression of them on a few rumours and a fictional portrayal. Once you look at the role Anna plays in the industry, it's pretty obvious that she cares deeply for young designers and for the fashion business itself. Aside from that, I found her to be the kind of person you always want at a party: personable, talkative, and ready to strike up a conversation with someone new.

If you're interested, please do have a read of my interview. You can find it here.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

I Want It! Fifth & Mae Little States necklaces

I've been reminiscing lately about when I was younger, and had this fixated obsession with the State of California.

Now, I've never been to California. I imagine that a younger me would have liked to say that I know a lot about California, mainly from wandering around Los Angeles on Google Street View and leafing through a Rough Guide from the library. But I'm now pretty willing to admit that I know very little.

My interest was therefore based more on a vague emotional draw towards the state, a gold-rush mentality which told me that if only I lived in California, my life would be perfect. I feel this was primarily based on American movies and songs like 'Meet Me In California' by the Plain White T's; 'cos you know in California/ there's something better for us all.

I don't really think like that any more; I'd like to visit California, but it's not quite the nirvana it used to be for me. However, there's still a little part of me which sees it as emblematic of happiness, success, and fulfillment. As someone rephrased it for me recently: California isn't a place, it's an idea.

So that's what drew me to these necklaces. I guess the idea might be that you buy one for the state you were born in, or where you've made your home, but for me it would be more a symbol of aspiration. It's like when you wear a sweater with a made-up but prestigious-sounding university on it.

Anyway, these are very cute. And despite having only been to Massachusetts, Oregon, and Washington, I would be so tempted to collect all of them. The price is pretty sweet as well, at just under $15 each.

Small pieces of jewellery like this are my favoured accessory at the moment, so it's certainly tempting to indulge in my teenage self's Californian fantasy for a little while longer.

Which one would you go for? Tell me in the comments or on Twitter