Saturday, 22 April 2017

Monochrome with quirk, and ACTION!

The sun was blazing at 14C (57.2F) when I prepared to go for my inspiration walk. So what did I wear to celebrate? An austere black and white outfit. Hahaha!! Plus thick black tights and brown lace-up booties. I must be damaged - although I quite liked this.

Me: "Good morning, Madam. I'm applying for either of your posted positions: unsmiling high-fashion snob or strict matron of all sorts. I excel at the stupefaction pose and thrashings with gluten-free wet noodles." 

Vintage designer Pancaldi & B silk skirt, made in Italy.
I had to restitch the hem before I went out. It took forever!

Are you alarmed by this dour presentation? At least I've unwittingly maintained a semblance of quirk by mitten-clipping my collar into an erect position and carrying my favourite toolbox handbag, a gift from my partner O. We have the ideal relationship - he takes the tool; I take the case.
[Edit: A mitten clip is a band of elastic the size of a bandaid with a suspender (braces) clip at each end, one to clip to the mitten, one to the coat sleeve, although I use them for many applications. See here. Mine are a bit different.]
I've had strangers ask me if I carry poker chips in there. Or a gun. Well, the only chips you'd find would be BBQ or Sriracha, although I'd have to crush the bag to fit it in the case. I sometimes crushed chips as a child reasoning that it would prolong the chip-eating experience. It did - although it made for particularly crunchy sleeping bags during camp-outs with girlfriends in the backyard. Chips were special - seldom allowed in my home - and each crumb had to count.

I've done no gun-packing with this case (illegal in Canada), but I have elastics in there, which in the hands of O are pretty lethal for flies and mosquitoes when he employs his rapid-fire shooting technique. I have witnessed the carnage first-hand.

There's no question that I'd rather project the image of a gambler or hit woman than a fashion elite or humourless matron. I don't think I've ever met a hit man, although if I had I think the key would be not to know it. I saw a bloody gangster type once in Emergency, surrounded by police, waiting to have the tazer barb removed from his chest. He kept flirting with me, yelling, "Hey, blondie." I still wouldn't have answered if he yelled, "Hey, greylie." It was a surreal experience.

And the vintage graphic, double-breasted coat above really elevated the look too. It was a gift from my Fairy Thrift Sister Su. She's amazing. The coat is amazing!! Always my thanks fly out to her when I wear this. The lining is silky bright red.

A closeup of the toolbox handbag. What's inside? Let's have a look: my red journal/sketch book, reading glasses, special ceramic-tip roller-ball pen, change purse, face mask, three tissue packs, bandaids and crumpled wrappers, a whack-ton of safety pins (I've been looking for those!), a wood coffee stir stick that O sketched on, and old receipts. There are elastics in there too.

In other news...

I've made another video, an introduction to my YouTube channel, BagandaBeret. With 40(!) videos now I figured it was time for some tiny effort, so I created a header image and About section (there's a new fact in there about me). Now, in theory, new visitors and non-subscribers will see this video as the channel welcome.

People say video is the future. I'm not convinced with regards to bloggers, but I feel ready if it is.


This assemblage of clips conveys the Bag and a Beret flavour, not BBQ - maybe Fully Dressed with a touch of Dill Pickle? I welcome all new subscribers of course! (Fully Dressed and Dill Pickle are chip flavours) [Edit: I just changed the video to make it shorter.]
I love making videos and asking friends to join in. In the one I did with Shelley, she came up with the choreography, heh; another was based on a blog post by Suzanne, and another on a story idea she had. Everyone involved chips in with good ideas, acting, and/or filming: Sue, Sheila, L, Vancouver many of you, and I tease out something coherent in the end, or try to. Of course it all started with Sandra of Standard Deviations and our style parkouring around the city some years ago.

Probably what I like most is producing, directing, and editing, if it can be called that at this stage. I'm comfortable "acting" when it's a friend or Dick (my tripod) behind the lens, but the greatest challenge is setting up and filming scenes on the fly, in public, ultra-quick, almost like guerrilla film-making, and then marrying them with my vision of how the finished piece should look/feel. It's raw and real, like VOGOFF magazine, a reaction to the highly-slick, highly-funded, highly-controlled, highly-manipulative advertising shoved in our faces every day. I'm grateful to have friends who help me play in this medium. Thank you!

Now I'm exhausted. Did you notice my hair? Slightly pouffed up on top with sculpted bangs and wisps on the side. I like it. And my almost-black Poe lipstick.

That's all for this week.

Naturally I'll link up to party-gal Patti at Visible Monday on her blog Not Dead Yet Style and Catherine at #iwillwearwhatilike on her blog Not Dressed as Lamb. And congrats to Catherine for her big UK Blogger of the Year Award. Three cheers for over-40 bloggers!

Have you ever made videos? Moving images with sound have opened up new realms of creative expression - I sense an immediate connection with the grassroots enthusiasm that comes from bloggers, especially women over 40. Do you believe that videos are the future? Thoughts?

PS. I didn't get a callback to the audition, as expected, but I'm raring to go to another audition next year. Hahaha!! Thank you all for your best wishes on that though.

Saturday, 15 April 2017

Quick, put Hollywood on speed dial!

Remember when a casting agency invited me to audition for a high-falutin' TV commercial last spring? For a luxury Volvo SUV? Scared witless, I went. I was supposed to channel a rich, sophisticated mother-of-the-bride, think pensive Tilda Swinton without the edge. Instead, I squeaked. I did. Like an excited Chihuahua. Don't ask me how it happened.

When it was my turn to "drive" the SUV, I see-sawed the toy plastic steering wheel back and forth the way a toddler pretends to drive, somehow misinterpreting the words "Hamptons" and "wedding" as "Twister Part 2" where I'm driving through a house blowing across the road. Read more about it HERE.


I was given a round of applause as I exited the audition room. Good riddance? Or thanks for the entertainment. Hahaha! Whatever it was, I'm sure my ego's nine lives are into negative numbers now.

I emailed the casting agency to apologize for squeaking, and in their reply they insisted how, no, you were great - a nice line, well delivered, it's their job. I expected never to hear from them again. (By the way, that finished ad is HERE. If only I could have seen it before my audition I know I would have done better. My lost part is near the end of the clip.)

Well, the casting agency called again yesterday. !!! (last Monday)

For an audition today (Tuesday). Bwahahaha!! Almost a year since the last audition. Quick, speed-dial Hollywood!

And guess what? I went.



And guess what? I didn't SUCK!!!! Okay, well, maybe a little, but not NEARLY as bad as I did the first time. It helped that this ad had a David Lynch vibe, more up my alley, although that's not supposed to matter, right? I spent the evening before springing my lines loudly and suddenly upon my unwary partner O. Poor man.


I was told to dress as myself, although the agency also referenced "fashionista," "Wintour," and "expert" in her guidance. I cocooned myself in colour and elevated my spirits with Miu Miu heels and hair so towering I swear I was picking up satellite signals. And while I walk whenever I can, I drove to this audition, and in doing so experienced the unusual yet pleasing sensation of my hair brushing lightly on the roof of my car.


Upon arrival I did my best to blend in. "Oh yes, hey, just another actor here. Totally, totally profesh. That's me." But I was certain that at any moment everyone would stand up in unison and point, and with huge gaping mouths make creepy loud rasping sounds like in that movie Invasion of the Body Snatchers, the 1978 version with Donald Sutherland - so good (HERE). They didn't.

At my first audition, the holding room was deathly quiet and lined with tight rows of impossibly handsome young men in suits. As I clicked past them in my dress and heels, I felt like the mother come to tend her children in the 1960 movie Village of the Damned (clip HERE). (All these horror movie references. Hahaha!) The group this time at least included a few chatty men and women of all ages, and kids. Naturally, a touch of chaos always takes the edge off.


I can't tell you the details of the ad of course, except to say it was for a food item, and filming will take place over several days in Toronto. I didn't buy an imaginary Beverly Hills mansion online beforehand either; I learned from before that flipping fake real estate is a no-win situation. And while I'm certain I won't get a call-back, I tell you, I feel great! I threw my hat back in the ring, I clambered back onto my high horse, I tried tried again. I'm sure there's a profound LIFE LESSON here, a sacral spiritual yoga mind stretch. Ow!


Afterwards, it was clearly time for a self-reward. I still had time on my parking meter and remembered with happy alarm that there was a thrift shop in the neighbourhood. Oblivious to the cold, pelting rain and high winds, I stumble-floated my way there. And...JACKPOT! My usual food rewards, like cheesecake, hot buttered rolls, chocolate and/or cookies, often just end up on my hips, but the "Buy 4 blouses, get one free!" deal really hit my sweet spot. So much for my closet shake-down. Gaaaa!!!

And what did I wear? Outfit 4, the Mozart jacket. It looks better on than it does on the dummy. The items in Outfit 2 with the floral jacket are three of the five self-reward items I bought at the thrift shop - the tie was a gift.

A strange week in the best way. I suppose I'll link something up with Patti and Catherine at Visible Monday (Not Dead Yet Style blog) and #iwillwearwhatilike (Not Dressed as Lamb blog). I'll also link up to Catherine's #SaturdayShareLinkUp.

Have you given yourself any self-rewards lately. If not, get on it!!! Hahaha.

And a little postscript: THIS is what I'm listening to to take me off this screwed up planet for a while. To relaaaaax, to dream. I took that photo today, Friday.

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Space bag showdown

Oh yes, everything looks fine, doesn't it - a sunshine-golden top, a lurex dress under that. "Gee-willikers, what a wonderful day, tra-la-la!" But HA! Look closer. What's that partial second "me" on the left side of the frame? This is what happens when you enter the Space Bag Zone, SBZ; Greenwich Mean Time meets Mel's Mean Times, when the mere mention of  Marie Kondo's The Life-changing Magic of Cleaning Up makes me want to gargle with Windex, wear plain dresses hand-sewn by the Dalai Lama - and drink the vegan blue Kool-Aid. 

Frolicking in the alley in the Space Bag Zone (SBZ) a day ago

Switching to SBZ always triggers my seasonal closet affective reorder, where I pod-up my winter duds to make way for the spring-summers. The clothes shown below await sorting and possible transition on E Deck, while the transport ship and crew (that would be me) go through final checks.
  • Vacuum cleaner with mega extension hose-power and reloadable hepa cartridge? Check. 
  • Backup plastic cocoons (aka Ziplock Space Bags - unpaid non-endorsement of love-hate product that has averted global takeovers by my closet)? Check. 
  • Smelling salts? No fecking way. Get real.
  • Chocolate? Check. 
  • Hip flask? Check. 

I told O that if I weren't back in 24-hours to call Scully and Mulder (from the show X-Files). There was no telling what would conspire in the space pod colony deep in the cold, silent bowels of my building.

I descended, wheeling my cute vacuum cleaner defensively in front of me ready to "TAKE THEM OUT!!" When I reached the vault, with a steady hand and steely gaze, I unbolted the door and FLUNG IT OPEN!

!!! !!! !!!

From their plastic-cocooned darkness, my clothing blinked, then leered. Somehow during incubation they had sparked into consciousness! "IT'S ALIVE!!!" is what Gene Wilder screamed in Young Frankenstein. I screamed, "I'M GONNA NEED A BIGGER HOSE!" Suddenly, I felt like I was falling, falling...wearing a fabulous vintage maxi. Yeeeeah!

Those are parts of two of my many huge paintings

Toxic alien vapours quickly dulled all thought, motivation, and action. I'd have to be sure the government doesn't get its hands on this. Think of the chaos! But wait, maybe it already has. That would explain so much! I can see now that the symptoms of toxic alien vapours have been exhibited on my blog before. Don't be alarmed.

Somehow, I don't know how, maybe by drawing strength from a lifetime of make-or-break thrifting, hours later I resurfaced, dazed but still standing. It's a fog what really happened. I just knew from the forensic analysis of chocolate spatter on my face and arms and the empty flask that there had been some nasty business.

Gasping, I told O not to worry, that I was back with my body/mind stats as normal as ever. He rolled his eyes and went back to what he was doing. His stoicism is truly remarkable.

These spanglers on Z Deck tried to escape. Sorry, sorry, Paillette, no one, NO ONE escapes on my watch! I'm still not done down there. Not by far. But I am prepared to fight another day.

Fitting the Space Bag Zone theme, I have decided to share this video.

O scratch-built this robot several years ago based on a beloved Japanese robot in the '60s, Thunderboy, which was licensed from an American model robot called Robot Commando. I made the video - it's one of the very first ones I ever did - but O did the flying saucer. Heh.

And below, something I wore a few days ago - after all, this is also a style blog. Heh. As all of you know well, I am not perfect: "do I look like a frickin' role model?" I wore this black maxi tank dress over a black turtleneck. That's my silky skirt on top of it all. On my feet I wore combat boots. And there's my magic loupe, a gift made by O.

That's all. Whew. This week has been just about me - no meetups, no events, nothing else - although I did update my street style blog, Culture Serf, after running into an incredibly talented sewing friend at the fabric store, Dressew. 

I'll link up to Patti at Not Dead Yet Style for her Visible Monday and Catherine at Not Dressed as Lamb for her linkup, #iwillwearwhatilike. Maybe I'll see you there.

Got any battles stories you'd care to share? Do you do the seasonal wardrobe switcheroo? What aids do you use to get through it?

Friday, 31 March 2017

Dots and shoe weirdness with Sheila

First up, another photo from the AARP article (HERE), which I posted about last time. I love this combo - my Emporio Armani suit jacket, vintage pants formerly owned by Mr. Sanchez according to the monogram on the inner waistband, vintage Pierre Cardin tie from our former building manager, polka-dot blouse from Talize Delta thrift store, and brown tie boots. NEXT!

The shrubbery behind me spells out NOSH. It's a restaurant patio.

Last weekend I met up with Sheila of sheilaephemera and her partner L when they came to town to celebrate their 20th wedding anniversary. L better watch out - that's some embrace Sheila and I are locked in. Hahaha!

And when they come to town that can mean only one thing, well, two: booze for breakfast (lunch for them) and a pilgrimage to Fluevog's flagship shoe store. I had a tiny beer for the first time in decades, a dark one. It tasted, hm, woodsy, like mulch and moss in a dark green forest, like a musky critter in a cozy burrow, in a good way. These two are corrupting me. Thank you. Sacriligiously, they ventured into this Brown's shoe store. I can almost hear Sheila whimper with desire for those booties, but she made up for it later at Fluevog.

And we filmed a little video. When I think of these two, I can't help but think of shoes, which inspired me to think of this story. An expert and enthusiastic cast and crew cut months off our shooting schedule. L took on camera duties, at which he excelled, and method acting and props took care of the rest.

Despite the depiction of shoenivores, no shoes were harmed during the making of this video. I was harmed when I had to take home all the leftover licorice. Heh.

After we finished filming, we stumbled across a mini shoe gallery in the middle of the sidewalk. What are the odds? Nobody was watching over them. There was no signage, e.g., Scratch & Sniff, Rate My Treads or Shoe Jenga Challenge. Nothing. It wasn't like stuff had been heaved from a condo window after an angry break-up - these were artfully arranged. Weird, right? 

Also weird are those two people on the sidewalk wearing bee-keeper masks. Where's David Lynch?!

We also veered into Used House of Vintage. The 50% off sale that was on two weekends ago is mostly off now, so that put a damper on my enthusiasm. Of course we had to try on sunglasses. I try on these same sunglasses every time I go. When am I finally going to BUY them?! I love this photo of me and Sheila - Insects from Planet 9.

We had a great time together, as usual: filming, then brunch at Forage (where we had our big blogger meetup brunch), then more filming and some shopping before I had to get home. Sheila did an amazing writeup of their Vancouver adventure on her blog, HERE, with lots more photos. I always love her weekend roundups. I also posted their photo on my street style blog, HERE.

Don't forget, L has a blog too - Creative Maestrom, CD and concert reviews for the musically attuned and a Cole's Notes for the rest of us. He's a gifted writer to be sure.

I wore my drop-crotch jeans, made in Italy, with my purple Mozart jacket for our meetup and again a couple of days later. They are undeniably my new favourite pants, purchased for a bargain at My Sister's Closet. Several sizes too large, they are record-breakingly hipslung without showing rear cleavage, and I can still achieve mobility without waddling. Score!

Below, without the coat and positioned vertically. I absolutely wanted to dress like I had just rolled out of bed; I think I got an A+ on that. These pants, I can hike them belted, like I did during the meetup, or wear them hipslung slouchy, which demonstrates the style versatility thrift shopping opens up for me. In a retail store, I would never consider three sizes too big - I'd head straight for my size on the racks, when in fact the hugeness of these pants gives me far more creative freedom.

I can see from the photo above that I need some black riding boots, a helmet, crop, and an estate in England, or, black riding boots, a newsboy cap, megaphone, director's chair, and Hollywood mansion to take this look to the next level. But nunh, rumpled in the concrete studio is a look unto itself.

And below, the polka-dot blouse and Sanchez pants close up. The dots are a vivid baby blue on a brown background, but the inner collar is lime green with blue dots.

That's all for this week. I'll link to Visible Monday at Not Dead Yet Style when the time comes. And I've also linked up to Catherine, #iwillwearwhatilike, at Not Dressed as Lamb.

I hope you are all keeping your cool, no matter what your weather is. Finally, some sunshine is here - I can't believe it. Hugs to all.

What do you think those shoes were doing there?!

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

What to wear for gardening, and AARP!

Oh yeeeeah, baybee, we're raking it in now! We're talkin' the green stuff, all righty. Heh-heh-heh. And I don't mean vegetation - because it's pretty much just mulch. Sigh. Now that I mention it, I'm not really raking at all. Props. They're the best. I'll call this photo "The Rake's Progress - In a Good Way" (The Rake's Progress is the title of paintings by Hogarth and an opera, both with a wretched ending for the rake).

My Vegas Pantsuit, although it's really a jumpsuit, vintage crepe wool (fully lined) and sleeveless, with palazzo pant legs. The slits up the sides are edged with rhinestones diamonds and topped by a sparkly silver embellishment. DIVINE. When I first laid eyes on this beauty, I immediately sensed that the previous owner wore it to Vegas in the day, and WON. I'm still placing my bets hoping the vibes will carry over.

The flutter sleeves are another vintage piece, a top with a stretchy low-cut, nude-coloured body and lovely angel wings, designed to be worn under other pieces, like this Vegas jumpsuit.

And another outfit. This is the most HUUUUGE construction trailer and stairs ever, it's downright Brobdingnagian. (Love that word! Brobdingnag is the name of the island in Gulliver's Travels, where Gulliver is very small.)

That's some good-assery there. (Why must my ass always be bad? - even if it is.) My T-shirt is a DIY that says "I am my own brand." I would revise the statement to "I am NOT a brand" but it's too late now and I like the T-shirt. It's hard to see anything clearly when the photo is this small. Good.

And the pièce de résistance for this post - the video I put together when Suzanne and Sue and I met up recently. Suzanne came up with the story, Sue did all the camerawork, and I did the editing. We filmed this at Talize Delta, that humongous thrift store that we make a special point of hitting together when Suzanne comes to town.

I'll link something up with Patti at Visible Monday at Not Dead Yet Style, here too. I'm feeling more perky this week so I'll need a sassy little drink and Cheesies. See you there!! And I've also linked up to Catherine, #iwillwearwhatilike, at Not Dressed as Lamb.



Who will take home the bowling trophy?!


I have experienced the aisle block, hanger crush, grab 'n' dash, and rack attack many times while thrifting, but I usually don't take my opponent down - I wouldn't want to hurt anyone. But I give a mean side-eye. Heh.

The uncensored hardcore version of this video is playing in the rec room of an anonymous middle-aged woman in the suburbs in Altoona, Pennsylvania. You have to know the secret password to get in and must bring a bottle of Paul Masson wine and Cheesies.


Aaaand, I was in a piece in AARP (formerly the American Association of Retired Persons) in their section called Disrupt Aging. Hahaha. The snappy writing makes me so happy. The full story is HERE with new photos. Thank you AARP!

Others in there are Dorrie Jacobson of Senior Style Bible, Anita Irlen of Look for the Woman, Lyn Slater of Accidental Icon, Alyson Walsh of That's Not My Age, Sara Jane Adams from her Instagram, Elisa and Lily of Stylelikeu, Judith Boyd of Style Crone, Debra Rapoport of her self-named blog. I'm a fan of all these women. It's a huge honor to be among them.

I had another meetup a couple of days ago. I'll have to put that in my next post! And there is a video to go with it. Heh.

I hope you are all feeling DAZZLING no matter what you're wearing. SPRING SPRING SPRING!!! (at least in this hemisphere). Vancouver is still in rehearsal but I'm sure it will eventually get here. Hugs to all!!!

Monday, 20 March 2017

Tidy Kim Novak hair and a blogger meetup

My brain is finally coughing up that big social hairball built up during a whirlwind of activity these past couple of weeks, hence, my tardiness in posting.

And then, several days ago, another media opportunity came up (tba) so I decided I needed a bunch of new photos of springish looks taken in natural light. But there was a tight deadline. So in driving, freezing-cold rain, I trudged downtown in my shaggy muppet coat, lugging a heavy bag and fighting a weaselly umbrella. The afternoon was kind of like that game Whack-a-Mole as I scurried, frazzled, from one dry spot to another. I had fun in a push-my-limits way.

What I wore to the Press Preview

On March 8, I attended a Press Preview reception for Eco Fashion Week, Mar 31 - Apr 2, where I practised Extreme Hobnobbing. Armed with my bonafide business cards, as seen here, I was no longer a fish out of water like last year; I was more like a mud-skipper or other walking fish that fins its way across the mud, awkward, disheveled, and flapping about with bug eyes. Some kinds are alien invasive species. Yup.

Next is my friend Colleen at the Preview. She keeps me apprised of all the fashion events in the city and runs a great blog, Clothes Line Finds, with her daughter Anthea from Toronto. I take notes on her mingling expertise. What a fantastic outfit! Don't miss the glimpse of shoe.

I'm happy to say that I did not plant myself at the buffet table this time, aided instead by the centrepiece bowls of tasty designer potato chips on each bar table in the room. I'll soon write up EFW on my street style blog. But enough of that.

The BEST thing that happened lately was a blogger meetup. Hurray!! 

Look at those happy mugs, would ya? Sue, A Colourful Canvas, Suzanne Carillo, and moi (those choppers!). Suzanne came to town and we got two days of her all to ourselves. This photo was taken at Earls (where we ate at the big meetup a couple of summers ago). Suzanne instructed our handsome, young server to keep away our fans, and despite his professional demeanor, he told us he was a wreck inside with the thrill of meeting us. He got a good tip.

We shopped and talked and shopped and talked and ate and ate and ate, like what happens at all blogger meetups, except we didn't have goat yoga, which Sherry offered at her meetup in Phoenix. Just as well - there was merciless schlain (slushy rain) the whole time.

We all tried on these marvellous leather gold booties. Can you believe how fabulous they are? - I'm of course referring to the women, Suzanne in her vintage and Sue in her self-sewn dotted coat with buttons she also made.

On the first day of our meetup we converged at Talize Thrift store in Delta where we shopped until I dropped - you'll have to see the video, coming soon, to know I mean it. We didn't even get kicked out of the store for our boisterous behaviour. In fact, they gave us a discount. Woo hoo! Talize staff treated us like stars, having seen our previous videos, here and here. They were super friendly and accommodating.

I'll let you decide on your own whether Sue and Suzanne bought these outfits. It's kind of a no-brainer. I got a great haul too but my stuff is still bagged awaiting processing.

During our two days' together we also hit Used House of Vintage store, where Sue also shot some great iPhone footage of me and Suzanne goofing off, and the Hermes boutique, where we didn't goof off, a stationary store, Holt Renfrew, and The Room at The Bay for getting ideas - and keeping warm and dry. And we dined at Cactus Club. I swear, meeting blog friends is the best thing!

SUZANNE put up her post on the meetup HERE. It's PERFECT. 
And it includes video from the vintage shop & Talize. You MUST SEE IT. Hahaha!!
Shameless, shameless

Suzanne flashes a bit of leg in the star dressing room at Used House of Vintage, the most glamourous vintage change room in town.

Edit: I put a new photo of Sue and Suzanne on my street style blog, here.

And below, my entire Press Preview outfit. I love it, especially with my tidy Kim Novak hairdo, all slicked back like that, my black eyeshadow, and Poe lipstick. I used my uni-suspender to hoist the waist of my fisherman pants and a kimono-fabric shoelace around my neck to secure my wallet holster. The day of this function was also terribly windy, cold, and wet, no surprise there, but my hair didn't budge. Hahaha.

All this rambling is what happens when I miss posting for a while. As I said, social hairballs - processing everything that's been going on takes time.

I'll link something up with Patti at Not Dead Yet Style, her Visible Monday party. I'm exhausted! I'll be the one snoozing on the lawn. And next weekend is another big meetup, which, by the way, I'm looking forward to.


I just found out that the Marie Claire Brazil magazine article I was in is also online. 
You can see it HERE

Please tell me I've covered everything now. Please. Heh. 

Oh yeah, I have also been obsessing over a series on Netflix called Velvet, about a couture ladies' department store (Velvet) in Madrid, Spain, in the late '50s, and the lives and forbidden love between one of the store's heirs and a seamstress/designer who boards in the store. Don't watch it! There are 54 episodes and each one is over an hour long. The fashion, the music, the language... Sigh.

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Squash and styrofoam and the ultimate in leisurewear

A colourful silk blouse. Which I love. Thrifted, of course. By Scotch & Soda, a slightly upscale brand from the Netherlands. The original tags were still attached, as well as all the brand's signature chains and metal gewgaws, which I find irksome, but I got it for a steal. I won't tell you how much I paid to spare your feelings. 

I'm standing in the viewing area of my building's squash court. The match I'm watching has apparently made me catatonic - or looking uber-boring fashiony. Heh.

Everything but the pants is thrifted and fine quality. The oversized men's overcoat below is British, vintage wool blend and water resistant. I thrifted the Miu Miu boots for $10 several years ago because the store thought the crackled leather meant they were worn out. The day after I bought them, I saw the exact pair in an editorial ad for Harley Davidson(?) in Vanity Fair magazine. I cut out the ad and hid it someplace so safe I'll never find it again.

The paisley pants are by some mid-tier brand, I forget, purchased at a consignment shop. They are awesome. And there's my "magic loupe" of course, a handmade gift from my partner O, worn daily for years not only as a talisman but also as a quick and easy substitute for reading glasses.

And below, I'm trying to be very cool in the stairwell. Val of Muse Fondue suggested on my IG post that I just need a candy cigarette to make the look complete. I so agree. Or a pink bubblegum cigarette because sometimes when you'd blow on them, powered sugar would puff out the end like real smoke. They probably don't make either anymore; I wonder if they sell candy fatties now.

In my mid-20s I decided to take up smoking for my New Year's resolution. I choked down about two half cigarettes and promptly gave up. I'm so glad I did. I couldn't even hold them in a cool way.

Below is the same outfit but with my shaggy coat and DIY faux fur collar thing. I'm reading in the styrofoam recycling room. Bwahaha - no I'm not. I always do flash photography in there, meaning I take my pictures in pitch black and the flash only lights up for a split second, which would give me time to read one or two words max if I were on a roll. Rather inconvenient.

I needed this book, reading glasses, and stool as props this time in case people came wandering in. What would they think finding me in the styrofoam recycling room not actually doing anything? This way I could say, "I'm reading, what does it look like?!" (And hope they overlook the fact that it's dark and there's a tripod and I could ask them the same question.)

I'm wearing my denim sweat pants, distressed denim on the outside and soft fleeciness on the inside, hip slung with a drop crotch and a sweatband ankle and waistband missing its tie. Thrifted, all thrifted, except my reading glasses, which I bought at the Art Gallery gift store, and my magic loupe.

The book in my hand is called Lady's Maid by Margaret Forster. It is a fictional account of the maid of poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning, single and later as wife of Robert Browning, based on scattered real life records. I've read the book several times and every time I scream in my head, Run! Sadly, my esteem of EBB plunged after this book, although my distaste was no doubt coloured by the conventions of the class structure of the time. I would not recommend this book if you want to maintain your high regard of this poet. But I enjoyed the book in an annoying (but good) way.

I'm linking up to Patti at Visible Monday on her blog Not Dead Yet Style. I'll see you in the garden. I'll be the one trying to look aloof in the reclining lawn chair, getting sloshed on low-salt V8 juice, and smoking bubblegum fatties.

In other news...
The near-impossible has happened - I was featured in Marie Claire Brazil magazine, their print March issue, along with Sarah Jane Adams, Lyn Slater, Iris Apfel, and Helen Winkle (Binkie Winkle). Ouch, ouch, ouch - that's the sound of me pinching myself. Hahaha! That was an honour, I can tell 'ya (being in the magazine, not pinching myself). If you are reading this MC, thank you! I have a pdf of the article and I'll get a hard copy later this month and share more.

The only reason I was in there was because you guys give me such AMAZING support. I'm not all cool like other mega-stars who rack up this kind of thing all the time; I'm just a woman who wanders around Vancouver trying to grab at the little good things, wearing stuff that makes me happy. So thank you!

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Three looks for a savage woman

That's right: three looks, no rules. Why? Because I'm SAVAGE!
Look 1: Double expansion pants for Candyland

A land of cakes and ice cream! But, uh oh, not nearly enough elastic-waisted pants before laundry day. What to do! How can I possibly accommodate such an ungodly chow-down?

Fabulous Anna of Anna's Island Style to the rescue. She sent me two pairs of trousers quite a while ago, and I'd say they fit very well if you don't mind losing all your circulation. Since I like circulation and eating, I decided to convert these pants - one pair in a beautiful soft, brown wool plaid and the other in a vivid zig-zaggy blue - into one pair of pants double size.

I chopped the brown pants down the sides, then inserted side panels from the blue pants to turn these slim-leg trousers into one pair of wide-leg wonders. To finish them off, I sewed the blue rear patch pockets onto the front. With a little hemming, these pants were done. Pocket artefacts in the blue panels are just wide enough to hold a pen. Handy!

Now I LOOOOVE these trousers. Although the fabric has stretch, they hang freely so I have lots of room for cake and ice cream. Thank you, Anna!

My top you might remember from an earlier post - I combined two t-shirts and a blue sweater into one top. The sleeves are extra long, but, because I designed two more sleeve holes higher up, the top can also be worn short sleeved with the excess fabric at the elbow free for dramatic whipping about and cursing when they dip into your coffee mug. The back of the top is longer than the front for fantastic rear coverage.

Look 2: Lurid waddle pants

Moving along. These are my Marni for H&M lurid lurex pants bought from a consignment shop, also farked with the addition of a racing stripe down the side for curbside appeal and expansion. (Am I noticing a trend here?!!!) The top is a vintage thrift find.

The above photo is called, drum roll please, Savage Lurid Moon Walk with Elephant. The pants are slightly drop crotch. I would call the original design a partial fail because you are forced to do a mini shuffle when you walk due to inadequate fabric in the crotchal area. But wearing these is still worth the waddle.

Note the facial expressions. That's my normal face. My blank face. My I'm-just-standing-here-waiting-for-the-camera face, perhaps elevated by the messy hair into the realm of fake rockstar.

The next photo is the one I shall put on Instagram. I had to show you the version with the shades.

Look 3: So short it hurts you

And the grand finale of this post, my mini dress. Does its scandalicious shortness wound your delicate style-rule sensibilities? How short is it? It's soooo short that I have to keep tugging it down to cover the solid band of colour at the top of these glitter tights - it's so bad it's good, and perfect for being part of The Savage 50, feck yeah.

I'm also wearing my thrifted over-the-knee caramel boots, vintage I believe, softest leather, made in Italy. I was delighted and surprised that they fit my ankles and calves so well. These boots were DEFINITELY made for walkin'.

Isn't she AMAZING! - I'm speaking of Nancy Sinatra of course, "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'." This is exactly how I feel when I step out in this last outfit, well, when I wear many of my outfits. Often this song plays in my head when I'm on my inspiration walks around town. I can see now that my dress is not nearly short enough. Heh.

I hope all of you have outfits that make you feel this good, whether it's a mini dress or a pantsuit, whether you're out walkin' or lounging in the La-Z-boy with a martini. If you don't, what are you waiting for?!! Get on it!! Hahaha. Let your savage heart run free.

I'm linking one of these up to Patti at Not Dead Yet Style, Visible Monday, and Catherine at Not Dressed as Lamb, #iWILLwearwhatilike, absolutely.

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