A few quick points about Vegas – everyone seems to want to go and everyone thinks they’ll win money there. I wasn’t too bothered about going to Sin City since firstly I’m not a man so all the corseted girls, prostitutes and strip clubs aren’t exactly aimed at me. Secondly, I didn’t have any money and I’m pretty sure you can’t double nothing.
But Las Vegas was tons of fun. My grandma and grandad took me to Blackpool once a year with my sister when we were younger to “see the lights” – they’d have loved the Vegas casinos and all the promise held in those non-too-subtle lights and fake European monuments. It’s a dangerous place for anyone who’s ever played the lottery and the Venetian hotel has a canal, gondolas, opera singers and a permanent blue sky, all indoors, for god’s sake.
In Vegas, the dealers are pretty much all Asian and you’ll get men, mostly Mexican, clicking at you to hand out hooker cards all the way down the Strip. I heard that the reason they click is that it’s illegal for them to actually talk to you.
The Bellagio fountains are pretty magical if you’re into that sort of thing (I am) and I also loved seeing all the cleaners at work every morning with hardcore gamblers still sat in front of the slot machines – I felt rude so no picture of them slaving away in their glamorous surroundings. Wouldn’t be so glamorous if you couldn’t see your reflection in the marble now would it?
And there’s not many cities in the world where you can walk around fancy hotels just like that – every corridor in the Venetian has a different set of chandeliers overhead, the Wynn is just insanely opulent and the Mirage (where I stayed) has a huge vertical fish tank wall as you walk in, not to mention the “volcano” outside. A very silly city but worth a few days in if you embrace it.
More travel on Style & Then Some
An Indian Winter – Marianne Cotterill Jewellery at Matches
Berlin in one day – or two and a half hours even
GUIDE: A weekend in Paris
We had so much fun at our second tweet up on Thursday. I’ll be bringing you a full report of the night next week, but Helen has put her photos up already, so head over to Facebook and get tagging. And don’t forget to like our Facebook page while you’re over there, so you can get updates whenever we blog (usually once a day).
Last year when I was living in a flat down a mews in Maida Vale, my flatmate and I would often hear music through the walls at odd times of the day and night. We used to joke that we lived next door to a famous band – practising the drums at 2am and spending days on end playing Bach’s cello suite no.1 was not conducive to having a normal day job.
We got to know our neighbour, Charlie, as he sat outside in the mews sunbathing in his boxers that summer. I was sure I recognised him from somewhere, with his big dark moustache and dreadlocks. Turns out his band, King Charles, is pretty well known, and I recognised him because I saw him supporting Mumford & Sons at the Scala in 2009. They’ve been featured a couple of times in the Guardian and toured with Laura Marling and Noah and the Whale back in 2007 when they first started out.
Charles in the flesh is lovely, if rather eccentric – and very, very mellow – and it was highly enjoyable hearing him tunefully singing in the shower of an afternoon (he seemed to have Black Eyed Peas, Just Can’t Get Enough, stuck in his head quite a lot last summer, in case you’re interested). He recently released his new EP Bam Bam in October 2011, and his reggae/folk/pop/electro tunes are definitely worth a listen.
FREE COCKTAILS! CHEAP DRINKS! PRIZES! And other last minute details for tomorrow’s Fashion Tweet Up…
Venue: Vodka Revolution in Soho, 2 St. Annes Ct London W1F 0AZ
Time: 6.30pm onwards
How to find us: ask for the Style and Then Some Tweet Up or Katie Wright’s party. Helen and Sophie from S&TS will also be there.
Prizes: we’ll be giving away a big goodie bag full of brilliant beauty products so when you arrive make sure you get a raffle ticket from Katie so you’re entered in the competition which we’ll draw at the end of the night.
Drinks: we’ll have tokens so that everyone can get one free cocktail from a choice of 2 new Vodka Revolution recipes. And we’ll also have lots of 2 for 1 vouchers so it’ll be cheap drinks all round after that if you pair up!
We’re really pleased that a great mix of bloggers, writers, designers, stylists, PRs and other fashion-y folk have all been in touch to tell us they’ll be coming. Don’t worry if you don’t fit into any of those categories, we’re a very friendly bunch and everyone is welcome! We’re looking forward to making new friends and seeing some familiar faces too.
Don’t forget to tweet with the hashtag #fashiontweetup2
See you tomorrow!
Hot on the heels of their announcement of Versace 2.0 (the cruise collection), H&M have released details of yet another designer collaboration. Released in March this year, Marni for H&M will be the next capsule collection mixing high-end design with high street retailing.
From the first few photos that have been released (check out the gallery below) and a short video, it looks like Marni head honcho Consuelo Castiglioni will be bringing the Italian brand’s signatures to the H&M table: unusual colour combinations, sizeable circle prints and unstructured cuts can all be seen.Now, I don’t want to be overly controversial, but it seems to me that the last few H&M collaborations have been distinctly gay-friendly – check out the hot pink and palm-printed menswear in the first Versace collection if you don’t believe me. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with this, far from it, but it makes me wonder whether H&M are deliberately going after the pink pound, worth an estimated £6bn a year in Britain, and that man-repelling Marni (well, heterosexual man-repelling to be precise) is part of that strategy. I remember reading a Women’s Wear Daily interview with Courtney Love
a couple of years ago in which she talked about her fashion preferences. Love reckoned (I’m paraphrasing here) that women who wore Marni basically didn’t get laid:
Love feigns her distaste at the overwhelming selection of Marni in stock at Jeffrey in New York City, because, in her view, it works against having sex. “I am against Marni, and I’m sure the lady who designs it is very nice, but I’m not a Marni wearer,” she says.
And just this month, Emma Forrest wrote of Marni in ELLE magazine: ‘the clothes suggest not sex, but its platonic absence.’ Take the printed skirt and top in the photo above. A clashing cream, green and brown pattern on a silhouette that resembles hospital scrubs doesn’t exactly scream sex does it? Personally, I’m not keen on any of the looks in either the photos or video and won’t be queueing up in March to buy any of this collection. Marni doesn’t strike me as an obvious choice for a retailer that specialises in young fashion, but Castiglioni says the collection is ‘going to speak to a wider audience and in particular to the younger generations.’
Check out the photo gallery and video below – is Marni for H&M ‘speaking’ to you or is all that sexlessness off-putting?
Marni for H&M will be released in the UK on 8th March 2012.
New Year and I have that familiar back-to-school feeling. There’s something about a freshly bought diary and donning a pair of squeaky-clean shoes (Christmas pressie naturellement) that gets my nostalgic juices going.
And so it is in the spirit of fresh starts that I decided to review this pencil-case inspired line by Me & Zena. I say fresh starts because normally, if I received an email from a PR promoting ‘Jewellery for the Unruly’, my mind would instantly conjure up images of that pre-teen Mecca Claire’s Accessories and I’d break out in a diamante induced sweat.
But breath. It’s probably a good thing that I did pay attention this time, as the line is actually very clever and has a tongue-in-cheek quality that I actually quite like. Taking inspiration from the humble pencil case, Edinburgh Graduate and Designer Zena Mckeown contorts pencils and slices apart sharpeners to create some rather interesting pieces (I particularly liked the ‘Big Sharpy’ ring in rose gold).
With fans like Eliza Doolittle, Pixie Lott and Marina Diamondis, it’s not unsurprising that the collection has an uber youthful edge. The lovely thing about quirky accessories like these, however, is that you don’t have to subscribe to the whole lot. One or two pieces is enough to liven up an outfit or – at the very least- your jewellery box.
The Me & Zena ‘Write On!’ Stationary Collection is available online now, with pieces priced from £16 – £44.
What do you think? Do Me & Zena have an inspired concept, or is it a gimmick too far? Tweet us @Style_ThenSome to let us know your thoughts
I remember staying up all night on November 4, 2008, to watch the election of Obama, sleepily aware of the historic nature of the moment. There was so much expectation and excitement. The extreme anti-Bush and pro-Obama feeling was clear cut and emotionally charged.
This year, November 4 will once again see the American nation deciding between a Democrat or a Republican leader, but in the wake of the anti-climax of Obama’s election it is likely to be a more nuanced and difficult decision than the one made in 2008. Many feel their high hopes that Obama would abolish the torture camp in Guantanamo Bay and bring troops home rather than get involved in more military action in Libya, amongst other things, have not been met. Support for Obama certainly feels more tentative than it did a few years ago. Over the course of the coming months, the various Republican candidates will be narrowed down, until the most popular goes head to head with Obama for Presidency.
The first round of voting in Iowa on January 3 resulted in a list of seven Republican candidates (although Michele Bachmann has since pulled out, leaving the other six to battle it out between them). These are the ones to watch – one of them will be running for President in November (in order of most votes):
So what do you need to know about the candidates? Mitt Romney is generally seen as the boring or safe option, and Rick Santorum is a neo-conservative with unpopular views on gay marriage, amongst other things. Ron Paul is a bit of a wild card who doesn’t really fit the typical Republican mould – CNN and other American media outlets seem to have given him less coverage than other candidates, despite his popularity, and so he has developed a reputation for being ‘ignored’ by the media. He’s probably the most interesting candidate. (Oh, and Michele Bachmann? She was kind of like the new Sarah Palin.) Nothing like a bit of Saturday Night Live to explain American politics.
I thought Annual Reports were only for FTSE100 companies and school children. But I was wrong – WordPress have given us a snazzy firework display of a report which details a year in the life of Style and Then Some.
At the top is a skyline animation that casts each blog post as a firework, with the intensity of the bang varying according to how popular that post was. It’s cute, but slow – if you watch the whole thing you’ll be there for a while. Scroll down, and you can find out all kinds of facts about where are readers come from, how they found us, and which posts they liked best.
It may sound lame, but it makes me proud looking back at 2011, the innaugural year of Style and Them Some, and how far we’ve come since we started in May – rising to nearly 8000 hits a month. I want to say a big thank you to all our readers. Here’s to 2012, and even bigger fireworks next year.
With the New Year always comes lots of new letters, I mean recognition, from her Royal Highness (or whichever title she prefers these days; Ma’am? Mam? Mirren?) and 2012 saw a flurry of Honours divvied out among members of the great British Fash-Pack.
While the likes of British fashion heavyweights such as Lulu Kennedy MBE (rightly dubbed fashion’s ‘fairy Godmother’) and Biba founder Barbara Hulanicki OBE were both awarded for their services toward Britain’s fashion industry, there were some more ‘under the radar’ names that were also recognised. For instance, Luskentyre Harris Tweed founder Donald John MacKay was OBE’d while an MBE was thrown at the founders of the cult jewellery store, Links of London, John and Annoushka Ayton. Now, I understand how the Queen is probably a Harris Tweed fan, but I didn’t ever suppose she would favour the ‘charming’ delights of Links of London…Perhaps they made her a royal-themed charm bracelet to mark the occasion?
While strictly speaking, she did not receive her MBE for fashion-related purposes (that would be ridiculous), my favourite honour was bestowed to the lovely Helena Bonham Carter, who was given a Commander of the Order of the British Empire award, for her role of a lifetime playing the Queen’s mum (mam? ma’am?! It’s just impossible) in the King’s Speech. Alas, her dedication to pulling up the standard of acting in the Harry Potter saga was sorely overlooked.
Yours sincerely, Helen Coakley G.C.S.E.
Elle Woods once famously quipped, ‘Whoever said orange is the new pink is seriously deluded!’. Well, Elle, you may have to eat your own words this year darling, as Pantone have declared 2012 the year of ’Tangerine Tango’.
While 2011 was in fact the year of Honeysuckle, Pantone (the colour matching system used by designers, buyers etc all over the world) announced in December that this vibrant orange shade (for any Pantone buffs, the code is 17-1463) will be the highlight of 2012. And why may you ask? Well, it has been steadily gaining quiet momentum in designer colour palettes (not only on the catwalk, but in other fields also such as interior design) for the last 9 years or so, and has already been spotted frequenting some of the major SS12 catwalks back in September. With the likes of heavyweight fashion players such as Acne, Victoria Beckham and Celine to name but a few all opting to include a splash of Tangerine Tango or there abouts in their SS12 shows, don’t be surprised to see an influx of the colour on the High Street this spring.
And while Pantone themselves describe this hue as energetic and attention-grabbing, it should be noted that it is also an easily transferable colour, which will no doubt make an even bigger splash on the AW12-13 runways come February. So apologies Elle, Barbie, Miss Piggy and co, but your just so last year.
Images courtesy of Style.com and Pantone.
In a word, no. But judge for yourself – check out the photos of the next installment of Versace for H&M, which lands on 19th January, in the gallery below.
Remember back in November when I reported on the inaugural Versace for H&M collection, which severely divided blogger opinion? One called it ‘the worst idea on the planet, ever.’ That didn’t stop punters queuing over night to get their hands on the goods when they hit shops, but when I was in H&M a month later there still seemed to be plenty of Versace bits hanging around – I wasn’t surprised to see a load of those particularly tacky little pink studded bags sitting there unsold. Maybe Donatella Versace and Margareta van den Bosch (head creative honcho at H&M) took note, because for the second round they’ve ditched the megawatt brights and heritage prints in favour of an altogether cooler and less in-your-face approach.
They’re calling it cruise, but this collection has a decided spring in its step: colours are soft and macaroon-esque, there’s a cute recurring fruit salad print and there are even a couple of bikinis. It’s a vast improvement on the first collection if you ask me, but it’s not without a few clangers – the white and gold jeans are very ‘WAG’ and the jewellery looks tacky. On the other hand, the prices are more appealing – most dresses are £39.99 whereas they were up to £100 first time round. And, even better, it’s going to be available online only so you won’t have to queue for hours or fight with the fanatics on the shop floor to ensure you get what you want.
The second Versace for H&M capsule collection of 38 pieces (24 for women and 14 for men) will be sold exclusively online at www.hm.com and will be available on 19th January.