Shameless self-promotion

I currently am

– knee-deep in a jaw-droppingly gorgeous stash of hand-sculpted lampwork glass beads from Czech, after many miles travelled, many months waited and many, many, MANY dollars spent. Am mushily in love! A very expensive love at that, though;

– going to be one of two main judges on a popular beading challange, one that I’ve participated in a few times in the past;

– asked to write loads of jewellery tutorials for Australian Beading Magazine in their upcoming October and December issues;

– invited to feature in an Artist Profile in said magazine, which includes *gasp* publishing my photos and bio info. Gosh! My mug in a mag! Not sure whether to be stoked or scared, so am being both.

Anyhoo, all boring work-related boast but can hardly contain myself at the mo. Now to get off my derrière and get those projects done before deadline, then dive head-first into abovementioned lampwork beauties.

WHEEEEE!!!

~nimble fingers~

Veins and the city

sex and the city 2

By saying this I know I run a massive risk of getting chased / bashed / whacked across the head with a Manolo-inspired heel by the throngs of Carrie Bradshaw’s fans. But. BUT! Seeing recent photos of the filming of Sex and The City 2 makes me kinda sad. Not boohoohoo sad, but more of a “sigh, it’s getting a little old” kinda sad.

As a fan of the original series, I found the first movie a little, um… how do I say it gently… well I can’t, it was THAT BLOODY DISAPPOINTING! Only the clothes were fab. Absolutely jaw-dropping! But the story line was so riled of cliche’s it made all those cheesy Korean movies look original. (Big didn’t turn up at the wedding? Charlotte’s adopted daughter from China? *gag*) After forking out 16 hard-earned bucks to watch it, I had to go home, pulled out my DVD’s, and “feasted” my eyes on the main series again, just to um… restore my faith in the spirit. It was that traumatic!

SATC3So now, now I really think the 2nd movie is just pushing too far, trying too hard. Maybe it’s time they should lay it off. Leaving permanent happy memories in the collective fashion-obsessed conscious, that kind of thing. Let it go while it’s still good. You know, while we still think fondly of the girls and their amazing/inspiring/wacky outfits, not winching at the sight of  middle-aged women tottering around in a pair of pain-inducing shoes, Choo, Cci or otherwise, the veins on their feet throbbing, pulsing, threatening to burst.

Don’t get me wrong, I think SJP is gorgeous. And so are the other three. Charlotte! Oh Charlotte! mmm… [insert dreamy, ecstatic, salivating expression]. I also admire the fact that Ms. Parker is embracing the whole “growing old gracefully” movement, and doesn’t seem to have had too much toxin (probably/hopefully none) injected in her face like many other female celebs. (G’day, Kylie!) But squeezing into teeny dresses and torturing your feet in weird-looking art objects just seem so, like, 2002.

But well, having said ALL of that (phew), when the movie’s out I’ll still go see it. Yeah, I’m a hypocrit like that. Even if the plot is bad, and I’m not trying to be psychic here, but it’s very much likely to be so, I’ll just put it down as a fashion documentary. Now that would be fun! 

~a fan with a love/hate/full-of-jealousy relationship with Carrie’s 81 outfits in the first movie~

Scientific Fact for Girls: Tights and Stocking are NOT Pants!

no-pantsNo matter how much they try to brainwash you into believe the opposite!

Shocking Real Life Story: The other day something bad, very bad!, happened to m’ and me on the way home. We were in our car, stopping at a red light, happily minding our own business. On the pavement to our left was this girl sitting on a bench, who decided right at that moment to stand up and then BEND OVER to retrieve her shopping bags from the ground. All of a sudden, her bum was right at our eye level. And before we had the chance to cover our eyes, we realised that she was wearing only a pair of denim-coloured tights on her bottom half. Yes, that’s it! No pants, no skirt, no dress or anything else OVER the tights. Not even a long-ish shirt to cover her bum, and its crack! And I shit you not, the excruciatingly thin fabric stretched so much, I could see the label tag on the inside those tights. Yes, that was how horrific it was. We’re scarred for life! Wondering if we should sue her. Indecent exposure? Exhibitionism? Deliberate visual attack on the general public?

Don’t get me wrong. I love my tights. They are the seasonal equivalence of the pill, talk about the liberation of women! In the sense that we can now wear dresses and skirts all year round. But please, ladies, please wear something over your tights / stockings! Mini dress, micro skirts, short shorts, potato sacks, ANYTHING. Even in the blackest shade of black, they are still underwear, a word here which means you wear them UNDER something else. They are thin, they will stretch, they will reveal. Unless you’re a/ Lady NoPants, I mean, Gaga, b/ Madonna, or c/ a male ballet dancer bouncing* around on stage, you really have no excuse.

And no, I’m not an old hag. Well maybe little old, but not a hag!

~threads~

* Sorry if that choice of word conjured up certain mental image you’d rather not have.

PS: And I just found this hilarious site on the wacky wide web: http://www.tightsarenotpants.com/manifesto

Blatant self promotion

Have been too lazy taking photos of the things I made lately, not that I’ve got any time to make many. But here’s what happened when I got a lightning moment of motivation. P-zzztt!

You likey?

sml_littlesuns

m’ said to name it “Caged” but I reckon that’s a little depressing. So until I come up with something better, it’s called “Red Little Suns”. So imaginative. (not!)

~paparadscha~

Style icon? My ass!

Just realised there hasn’t been any rants on fashion for a while now. Not because I’ve stopped wearing clothes. (Well wouldn’t you be glad if that was the case?) But because I’ve been lazy. Plus since m’ and I cancelled all our glossy mag subscriptions and rarely go shopping these days, I guess I’m a little out of touch with the whole fickle fashion fiasco.

Anyhow, yesterday I saw this link via Mamamia to someone else’s blog entry on Agnes-Dain-or-however-it-is-spelled. You know, that whacky British model with the pixie hair. And man, did I have a good time slapping my thigh in agreement with Ms. Jones when she talked about style.

Style is not, really, about following every fashion trend, nor is it about spending vast amounts of money buying only the newest and the best (if that were the case, Victoria Beckham would be a style icon, which clearly she is not, while Cheryl Cole, who has just been named Tatler magazine’s best dressed, has no innate personal style either, just loads of cash).

I hate that this messy, un-put together look is deemed somehow ‘London’. That Agy has now joined a long line of cutting edge Brits (Kate Moss, Amy Winehouse and the lamentable Peaches Geldof) who demonstrate how non-conformist they are by dressing like tramps.

EXACTLY! I mean, the girl is a model. She can whack on a muddy potato sack and I’ll bet my bottom dollar she’ll still look amazing. But the outfits! Explain to me, how are  THESE (below) considered “stylish”? Even a 4-yo playing with her Mum’s clothes could coordinate better.

agyness-deyn

Seriously, if I hear one more person slapping the “style icon” label on the likes of Agyness Deyn, Lindsay Lohan, the Olsen twins and other young, clueless, cashed-up chicks; I’d pack my toothbrush, go live in a jungle and wear a coconut bra and palm-leaf rara skirt. Now THAT, that’d show those monkeys what a “style icon” is. They should just ditch those lousy fur coats already, really!

(Or have I just revealed my real age?)

~rain!~

Who needs a scale when you’ve got ao’ dai`?

garfield3A while back there was a debate on Mamamia about our love / hate relationship with scales. Which reminded me of Garfield (love that cat!) and his obnoxious, opinionated weighing gadget.  I remembered agreeing with quite a few people on there about using our clothes instead of a scale to gauge our size. We know well enough that weight can be misleading – muscles being heavier than fat and all that jazz. But volume! Now to me, volume is the true measure of it all. And how do we judge that? Save for doing an Archimedes by jumping into a full bath and calculating the amount water getting spilled out, which apart from being quite messy, is also a very bad idea considering our water restriction (“I’m still at 3A, I’m also at 3A, we’re all at 3A!”), the only other option we’ve got is using a few favourite items of clothing for this task.

I’ve got a pair of jeans, one of only 4 pairs I own (yes, it is quite shocking, but more on this later), that I would put on from time to time to assure myself that the circumference of my butt hasn’t exceeded its, er, legal limit. I’m not so obsessed with the top bit because frankly, much to my chargrin, on me weight just refuses to go up there. Mass heads down South, Newton’s has long established that, didn’t he?

But tell you what, I’ve just found a better tool. You might have heard (!) that I made a point of wearing (or at least trying to do so) my old áo dài for Tết. I’ve got two sets, one made in 1998 and one in 2001. So yeah, they can now be called senior citizens, are entitled to pension, and have the right to go around calling everyone “darling” and starting their sentences with “Back in my days…” But they still look quite new and cute, even if I may say so myself.

Anyhow, I put them on this morning. And it was a good thing that m’ and our housemate weren’t home because if anyone’d heard the guffawing coming out from my room, they’d have thought I was losing it. This is how it went:

aodai-trangI took out the white set. Poked my arms into the sleeves. They fit all the way through. Thank goodness, so the arms are cleared! But elbows could NOT fold into an angle smaller than 90 degrees. Which made doing up the snap buttons rather difficult, especially around the neck! Finally did those up after a bit of struggle, phew! So the neck’s good. Then working down around my right underarm. Proving to be quite tricky but YES! The tiny furthermost hook slid in its place. Good girl! Then down the side, snap snap snap hook hook. All done. YAY!

And then I suddenly remembered to breathe in. Oh sheesh!

The peachy pink set was a little more “accommodating”, except for the sleeves which are a little short. WHAT? So I have not gained any height since ’98 but my arms have grown longer? WTF? As if my monkey arms needed any extra length! I’d have to check myself in a little apartment in the Parkville park land that has a sign next to my door saying “Please Do Not Feed the Animals”, if that were the case. Seriously.

aodai-camAnyhow, as for the pants. (Or pantaloons, as the wiki entry suggested. Does it have anything to do with pants & balloons, I wonder? Rather apt too, don’t you think?) Well, the pants are ok except that they used to come up to my waist, which is how pants should be, I reckon. And now they’re all the way up near my armpits! Which I’m sure tells you something about my waistline but I’d rather not hear it, you and the pants can have that discussion to yourselves, thank you very much.

Do I even need to tell you that as much as I love it, áo dài has to be the most unforgiving of all outfits? The pinnacle of torture? The essence of self-scrutinizing thoughts? I mean, forget strapless frocks that squash your boobs all the way up to your chin, forget bandage dresses that reveal even the silhouette of your belly button, forget even the skimpiest bikinis. It’s our lovely áo dài that takes the cake, baby! Because if you want to look good in it, the only thing you can do is stand dead still — tums in, tits out, bums sticking all the way to the back — and you do not inhale. Not a single breath! Quite a breeze, aint’ it?

And now you know why on the streets of Melbourne, we see Indian women wearing their gorgeous saris, we see Chinese girls in their sexy cheong-sams, we even see a kimono here and there. But except for traditional events like wedding ceremonies or cultural concerts, you’d find a hen’s tooth before you spotted a Vietnamese girl parading around in her áo dài here in Aus.

Hey, I’m not bitter ok? Nope. I’m also surely not exaggerating. (Okay maybe just a little.) I’ll still wear one of my áo dài sets for Tet. Or both of them, for that matter. (Of course not at the same time, silly!) I’m determined to be that hen’s tooth. Even when it means that if my plan to hold my breath for a long stretch of time don’t work, I may have to surgically remove a section of my ribcage. 🙂

Stay tuned. I’ll keep you updated.

~nostalgia~

(Tune of the day: Hunter ~ Dido)

Masks

I find it scary how some women, on any non-wedding, non-red-carpet-event, non-Halloween, just an ordinary old day, would find the need to heap on so much make-up — so, so much make-up, maybe about two tonnes? — that it looks like an entire separate entity on its own. Oh, sorry, I exaggerated. Probably only one tonne and a half! One glance at their face and I kind of expect the inch-thick caked up layers of pigment — completed with rope-like fake lashes — to leap out of their temporary resident, jump over and start chewing up my own head, occasionally fishing out the compact mirror to check for smudges.

Whatever happened to subtlety, ladies? Less is more. Haven’t you heard?

And don’t get me started on the ones with beautiful natural skin, skin as smooth as a baby’s bum, skin that a mosquito, upon landing, could easily ice-skate on, yet who would still go to painful measures to slap on this frightening mask. Why? I look up to the sky and ask. WHY?

~leaf~