30 May 2009

Sunday Self Pic

O Tell Me The Truth About Love

Some say love's a little boy,

And some say it's a bird,


Some say it makes the world go around,


Some say that's absurd,


And when I asked the man next-door,


Who looked as if he knew,


His wife got very cross indeed,


And said it wouldn't do.




Does it look like a pair of pyjamas,


Or the ham in a temperance hotel?


Does its odour remind one of llamas,


Or has it a comforting smell?


Is it prickly to touch as a hedge is,


Or soft as eiderdown fluff?


Is it sharp or quite smooth at the edges?


O tell me the truth about love.


- W. H. Auden
Bouquet of Roses, Fantin Latour, 1885

29 May 2009

The Young Victoria

Watched The Young Victoria with Jac and PH after work and feel disappointed by the movie, despite having gone with low expectations. Was grateful at its brevity, at least it didn't go on and on. Not that it's terrible, in the way that the absurd Angels and Demons was. In fact, it was very prettily lit and coloured and dressed, if dull. The 'plot' could pretty much have been (or was) summarised in a trailer, and you can guess the rest just by looking at the stills. Emily Blunt is miscast as Queen Victoria. She's comic, not regal, and she can't carry the picture on such slim talents. What saves are the men: Jim Broadbent's magnificent as the drunken King William, Paul Bettany is all menacing glitter and Rupert Friend (I can see the resemblance to the greasier Orlando Bloom, whom I never liked) is my new crush. I don't think Prince Albert was quite this dreamy.

Lacroix: The Fall


Sad, as Lacroix was the last house established under the formal couture rules: Christian Lacroix filed a petition for protection from creditors in a Paris court today, which will then decide whether to restructure or liquidate the company. Lacroix CEO Nicolas Topiol did not say how much was owed, but it is known that ready-to-wear sales for Fall 2009 were down 35 percent and losses for 2008 were about US$14 million on overall revenues of approximately US$42 million. Couture sales in 2008 were “flattish,” but far better than those for ready-to-wear. This throws the status Lacroix's Fall 2009 couture show in early July into question. A scaled-back couture presentation is "most likely". Some restructuring, including job cuts for some of the firm's 125 employees, is expected, but a sale of the company is also a possibility — Lacroix's owner, Falic Group, has been in advanced discussions with a group of Swiss investors.

28 May 2009

Note to Self

"A good, interesting letter is filled with the news, ideas, and opinions of the writer." - Vogue
When was the last time you got a letter? A real letter? People nowadays aren't used to receiving longer letters; Sometimes, when I get a thick handwritten envelope (in a hand I don't recognise)I assume it's some amateurish press release! Typed letters are acceptable for informal letters to close friends, especially if your handwritng is difficult to read or if you have a great deal to say, typing can be clearer. However, thank-you notes should always be handwritten. By all means avoid using a type face that looks like 'manuscript', those horrid swirly "affected" fonts. I simply prefer handwriting, blotches and all. It's simply more personal.

Slurp


Sean O!

Jon K!

These pictures remind me of this 1515 Raphael portrait for some reason.

Morning

I've got to tell you
how I love you always
I think of it on grey
mornings with death

in my mouth the tea
is never hot enough
then and the cigarette
dry the maroon robe

chills me I need you
and look out the window
at the noiseless snow

At night on the dock
the buses glow like
clouds and I am lonely
thinking of flutes

I miss you always
when I go to the beach
the sand is wet with
tears that seem mine

although I never weep
and hold you in my
heart with a very real
humour you'd be proud of

the parking lot is
crowded and I stand
rattling my keys the car
is empty as a bicycle

what are you doing now
where did you eat your
lunch and were there
lots of anchovies it

is difficult to think
of you without me in
the sentence you depress
me when you are alone

Last night the stars
were numerous and today
snow is their calling
card I'll not be cordial

there is nothing that
distracts me music is
only a crossword puzzle
do you know how it is

when you are the only
passenger if there is a
place further from me
I beg you do not go.
- Frank O'Hara

27 May 2009

Cover and Colours


Talking about covers, I just had to share this: The font, the colours, the blue trunks that seem be sampled from the Van Gogh sky blue in Almond Blossoms, the poodle, that iodine tan and what really kills me - the lemon coloured hair!

Bjork

This is such a nice cover... I heart BIG time.

26 May 2009

Seldom, Very Seldom

"Seldom, very seldom does complete truth belong to any human disclosure; seldom can it happen that something is not a little disguised, or a little mistaken."
- Jane Austen, Emma
The Jane Austen buttons are very cute right?

Mid Week Self Pic

25 May 2009

A Tissot for Tuesday

I like the summer-y heat of this painting, and the fact that it is very much a fashion photograph, the sheer floral fabric is beautifully painted! I'm not sure about the expression though, so camp-ly coy, and the gloved hand on the sailor's arm is so very drag. Of course, this is Victorian drag, very very funny. On The Thames, James Tissot, 1874.

24 May 2009

Anja Rubik!



I heart Vogue Paris. I heart Carine. I heart Anja. I heart the fact that Carine references the pin up art of Alberto Vargas (1896 - 1982) in the styling of the Dior outfit. It's period perfect, absolutely correct. By the way, Vargas was Peruvian, like Mario Testino.

Sunday, 8pm

Just how much would you pay for a digital alarm clock with radio for the night stand?
I found one I liked and stared at the clock for about 20 minutes.
I had dinner, and before the shop closed, went back to the store to stare at it some more. It's quite bulky. Black, with large green digital numbers. It's from Sony.
It's $29.90. Is that expensive? I really don't know what anything should costs.
I'll go back and buy it next weekend... but only if people think it's not expensive.

On Saturday Morning

"On Saturday morning, I'll read the papers in bed - backwards generally, for an hour and a half with coffee. I would use the rest of the morning to read. More often than not it would be a novel; my preference leans towards American and English writers, and I love between-the-wars mysteries. I also listen to music: American popular standards, show tunes, mid-century jazz. I basically have the musical tastes of an 80-year-old gay man." - Graydon Carter

22 May 2009

Weekend Viewing List: Trashy Romance Genre

Friends and colleagues lent me stuff they said I had to watch, and it turned out all to be rather syrupy, romance stuff. I've been putting off watching the DVDs because I'm just not that keen (not in the mood, not bored enough) to watch American productions, but Van is chasing me to watch watch watch, and so this weekend, I won't be reading. I'll roll down the blinds, up the aircon, light the Diptyque candle and settle down with hot chocolate and plow lazily through. This is what is screening:
Everyoned has been talking about Gossip Girl and saying how I will enjoy it. Val finally remembered and passed Season 1 to me (out of Roch's car window one sweaty night) and I've watched the first few episodes. It's truly inane, completely unreal, and badly styled. It does make me want to go out and buy an outfit and go to a party though, so maybe I should plow on. I certainly hope Twilight lives up to its hype. It has been making grown women gush, and I'm slightly anxious about it, I don't know why? Then Miss Bob said she watched The Notebook on a flight and wept hysterically. She said she (even) found Ryan Gosling cute.
Now, this I got to see. Shouldn't I be painting instead?
(Photos: Alma Thomas painting Red Azaleas, 1976)

21 May 2009

Carine!

"I like to have something every month that is not politically correct. A little bit at the limit. Sex, nudity, a bit rock'n'roll, a sense of humour. That is very French Vogue. It is the same with how I dress: I like to wear high heels with sweatpants, to wear white shoes in the middle of winter. I love when things are not quite going together. Even when I am old I will dress like that.
Sometimes, when you go to airport and look at the people, you see the worst looks — but the worst looks can give you more ideas than the best looks. There are some things we never touch. I don't want pictures with violence, I don't want drugs, I don't want horrible things like that. When you get older, you have to stay a bit rock'n'roll so that young people will still be interested in you. The way you move, the way you talk, maybe the way you have your hair in your face a little bit — this keeps you interesting." - Carine Roitfeld

19 May 2009

Mid Week Self Pic

                                                                Hand Roll anybody?

17 May 2009

Two Manets This Monday


Asparagus and A Bunch Of Asparagus, by Edouard Manet, were both painted in 1880. Last Wednesday, I had dinner with Mrs H, and we ate a bundle of white asparagus with hollandaise sauce. Yummy, so pure.

This Was Once A Love Poem

"This was once a love poem, before its haunches thickened, its breath grew short, before it found itself sitting, perplexed and a little embarrassed, on the fender of a parked car, while many people passed by without turning their heads. It remembers itself dressing as if for a great engagement. It remembers choosing these shoes, this scarf or tie. Once, it drank beer for breakfast, drifted its feet in a river side by side with the feet of another. Once it pretended shyness, then grew truly shy, dropping its head so the hair would fall forward, so the eyes would not be seen. It spoke with passion of history, of art. It was lovely then, this poem. Under its chin, no fold of skin softened. Behind the knees, no pad of yellow fat. What it knew in the morning it still believed at nightfall. An unconjured confidence lifted its eyebrows, its cheeks. The longing has not diminished. Still it understands. It is time to consider a cat, the cultivation of African violets or flowering cactus. Yes, it decides: Many miniature cacti, in blue and red painted pots. When it finds itself disquieted by the pure and unfamiliar silence of its new life, it will touch them—one, then another— with a single finger outstretched like a tiny flame." - Jane Hirshfield

15 May 2009

Frankly Speaking

Mrs Lady told me over a ramble and late, late lunch:
1. You know, of course, G swung both ways.
2. G is married, has been for years, but will put out for pin money. They always do, honey. I have a mouth witness.
3. Can you imagine, LLF fell in love with O (at first sight, I might add). O was half his age, half naked and painted gold.
4. Always, the parties with half-naked male 'models'.
5. At the fashion show, I was wondering where are the naked men? Then out they came!
6. The the infamous feathers, I was watching how Mrs Leo would deal with this.
7. My dear, do you know? The feathers didn't dare to land on her elegant self.
8. Yes, he fell in love the same night he stole the towel from the powder room.
9. She takes lots of pictures have you seen them? Click click flash flash, quite relentless.
10. What do they do all night? They keep Paris time hon!
11. You should have seen him only five years ago, my dear, he had a jaw.
12. Al only needs the job you know, because he needs the employment pass.
13. He has no vices, only does baby seafood. Little baby lobsters and tiny little bivalves.
14. Before that, the tart was selling charm bracelets my dear, that's how they met.
15. I'm only her friend before dinner of course. No one knows what she does after dinner.
16. I always say think of your children for goodness sake. But would she listen?
17. Oh yes, they said it was suicide, but it wasn't you know. He had the first wife killed. Oh yes, anything can happen there.
18. The doctor had a washboard stomache, so I was very impressed hon. I took notes!
19. She wore her wedding dress three times! She said why not? It's haute couture you know? There's no talking to people like that of course.
20. The tart was with an Arab businessman before this, so no, he is not some innocent babe in the woods, he's definitely a counter jumper of the first order.

Weekend Reading List


I've picked up my favourite Alan Hollinghurst The Line of Beauty again and struck anew by how special this really is. It sort of hangs together so well, from cover to cover, and I can't put it down. It's romantic, full of longing, and those coke-snorting scenes make me nostalgic. It's quite an unlikely Man Booker Prize winner (2004), as it's not self-consciously literary at all. It's sort of like a 1980s Brideshead. Dan Stevens plays Nick Guest in the BBC series of the book and is like Jeremy Irons crossed with Hugh Grant, and depending on your taste, is a total dreamboat. I'm dying to see him as Edward Ferrers in Sense and Sensibility (for obvious reasons)!
Of course, I have scads of print outs to read: Stuff I started to print on Thursday. This was a particularly hectic week and I haven't been able to read even the usual. Also I dragged home a few Elle Decors from the office to get inspired to buy a new flat. Looking at apartments are such a chore really. News: i-D has announced that it will become a bi-monthly. Will we miss it? I don't think so. It's more inexplicable that people are launching new titles in these times. An arbiter of 'designer living' (can you think of anything so laughably anachronistic?) just launched, and later in September, Style: Men will be launched, brought to you by the wonderful team that closed Arena Singapore. Be sure to rush out and buy a copy won't you? XOXO

14 May 2009

Cruise 2010: Chanel





                 Love it! Love it! Karl Lagerfeld delivers everytime!

Dear Old Bruce

Now that you have seen some of the "greeting cards" spread by dear old Bruce Weber here for 
this season's V Man, you probably won't need to buy it when it's out, would you? It's really 
more of the same. It's starting to look a bit old no? And getting repetitious, banal
lacking in emotion and novelty, seemingly made specifically for the split second-perving
on the internet. And I love Bruce Weber. Sigh...he's gone so bad!

Bedside Lamps


I finally bought a new pair of bedside lamps yesterday, and gave Shalls one of the old ones today. It's the one (from Ikea) that I didn't break from the pair. It looks like a giant ice cube. Shalls uses it in the office now to light her peeling Ashton shrine.
I love my new lamps, with their old-fashioned cream cotton shades, and dimmers. They are as big as lanterns, and the colour and texture of the wooden bases exactly match the brown wood of my bedside tables.

13 May 2009

How Cute Right?


Jason Wu at home making apple pie (I know, how American, right?) and his collection of Converse shoes. His favourite colour is gray. XOXO

Swine

                                                   Polaroid by Andy Warhol

12 May 2009

Mid Week Self Pic



Put your Manet where your Mouth is

Steamboat, Water Colour on paper, Edourd Manet, 1868

Friendship and Loss

The Jane Austen Font is based on the author's handwriting.

"Friendship is certainly the finest balm for the pangs of disappointed love"
-Jane Austen , Northanger Abbey

"Could fulfillment ever be felt as deeply as loss? Romantically she decided that love must surely reside in the gap between desire and fulfillment, in the lack,not the contentment. Love was the ache, the anticipation, the retreat, everything around it but the emotion itself."
- Kiran Desai, The Inheritance of Loss

11 May 2009

Photoshop Award




And why would they put Jessica Simpson on the cover of Vanity Fair? I hope the story is merciless.