Monthly Archives: January 2011

Tattoo me

Tattoos are everywhere. According to one recent survey, 20%  of all British adults have one.

I’ve debated getting one several times but I’ve never been able to pick something important enough to scar my skin with for the rest of my life and have somehow managed to talk myself out of it. I even watched a friend getting one done once and although watching the tiny needle pressing ink into his skin was a little off putting, I’m still slightly fascinated by them.

Celebrities are certainly to blame for the recent onslaught of tattoos. Wayne Rooney has ‘Just Enough Education to Perform’ (I’m sure the Stereophonics are proud), Coleen’s name, a Celtic motif , a flag of St George and “English and Proud” (delightful),  and a pair of clasped palms and angel wings across his back. To top that, David Beckham has that winged angel, his sons names and Victoria (in Hindi, spelled wrongly), among others.

And it’s not just the boys. One of the top Halloween costumes last year was Amy Winehouse, pile your hair into a beehive, cover yourself in eyeliner and you’re there. Angelina Jolie also has her fair few,  the coordinates of her children’s birthplaces, “Know your rights” in English and Latin, a tiger, several rambled quotations and a black cross, plus the names of her two divorced husbands (proof you should never get a tattoo of a partner).

Once something left to soldiers, sailors, bikers and criminals, today every second person seems to have one. And although some can be subtly, hidden works of art. There is a seperate category for the ‘babes’ slashed across bare backs and hips. On a trip to Thailand I gazed in shock at the half-passed out travellers getting inked at 4 am by slightly drunker looking artists.

A decade ago, there were 300 tattoo parlours in Britain; now the estimate is 1,500-plus and there’s even one in Selfridges.  At school they were an ultimate symbol of rebellion, but now even Sam Cam flashes hers around making the whole business a touch more middle class.

There really should be a warning book in every salon. Yes some tattoos can look good, but 80% do not. You can’t be sure your partner of three months will be there forever so do not get their name stained permanently on your body and do not decide to get one done when you’ve had more than one unit of alcohol. It’s not romantic, and you will regret it.

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Spring 2011 fashion

Last September’s fashion shows might seem a distant memory now, especially when dressing for cold, wet, dreary January days focuses more on staying warm, dry and de-frizzed rather than glamorous, cat-walk numbers.

However, there are some trends you should be aware of, and once you head out to the shops will probably be bombarded with.

I’ve rounded up my top five, skipping the scrunchies which should remain in the 1980s where they belong and skin-tight flares, only to be worn (and look good on) 1% of the population, to bring you out the of January blues and have you longing for the warm, carefree days of spring… (hopefully).

1) Swan lake-inspired ballet is everywhere and with Natalie Portman’s film, Black Swan, soon to hit the screens, high-street shops across the country are bringing out dancing-themed outfits. If, like me, you spent hours of your childhood at ballet classes, you might be wondering about the navy leotards, uniform pink tights and head bands. Forget the tutus of your past, ballet in 2011 is neat, subtle and can be easily added to any outfit.

2) Bold colours are back, banishing any winter blues and wiping the floor of the endless rows of neutral and camel colours from last season. Bright, strong colours look good but remember less is more, don’t dress from head to toe in red, but add a jacket or scarf to brighten up and update an existing outfit.

3) Fruit is another strange but true trend of the season featuring in everyone’s shows during fashion week. Miuccia Prada and Stella McCartney went for in-your-face bold prints of bananas and citrus fruits. A word of warning, these trends don’t always translate to the high street and it might be worth sticking to a strawberry broach or something equally small and subtle if you’re not prepared for the whole fruit-cocktail look.

4) In at number four is a look I don’t like myself as I’m hampered by being only 5 foot 4 inches and therefore unable to get away with a maxi dress unless adorning 6 inch heels. But they are back with a vengeance and if you’re the right height (damn you) then you should own one. Watch out for those that flow or gape too much as you might look more tent than boho chic.

5) Pleats are a must, giving girlish detail a more grown-up look. They follow the preppy-American college style which is another hit this year, but can introduce elegant shapes and charm to day or night outfits.

Finally, if you’re not keen on any of the above, soon fashion week will be back and accompanied by pages of more looks to choose from, or better still, why not create your own.

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Why clutter can be good

Every year around this time I make a list of resolutions to keep, spend the first few days of January attempting to abide by them until I’m persuaded off the holy trail and out to the pub with friends.

One goal I usually try is clearing out my life, starting with the hoards of clutter I seem to build up each year, which mainly consists of clothes, shoes and bags I’ve bought, but I find it impossible to part with some things.

However, news this week has comforted my squirrel side.  John Lennon’s white suit, worn on the infamous cover of the Beatles’ Abbey Road album, is up for auction alongside some of Lennon’s other outfits and the auction house in Connecticut says the clothes epitomise ‘the ultimate in rock and roll collectibles’.

The suit has already generated a lot of money, selling previously at auction for $120,000 in 2005. It was custom-made in Paris in 1969 by designer Ted Lapidus and Lennon wore it with white plimsolls for the cover shot.

Although my wardrobe contains few items to be compared, there are things of personal value I find hard to throw away and the history student inside me remembers everything (pretty much) comes into fashion again so it is worth hanging onto a few items.

I seem to have inherited this habit for holding onto things from my parents and now as maxi dresses once again become the key item of spring, my Mum reminds me how popular they were back in the 1970s and that those wise enough to hang onto them will now be laughing.

Another Rutt family fashion item are my Dad’s vintage, white, leather platforms from the seventies. These sleek shoes are still in mint condition and those brave enough to slip them on can literally step back in time.

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2010 in review

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

The average container ship can carry about 4,500 containers. This blog was viewed about 23,000 times in 2010. If each view were a shipping container, your blog would have filled about 5 fully loaded ships.

 

In 2010, there were 18 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 61 posts. There were 96 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 36mb. That’s about 2 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was January 4th with 212 views. The most popular post that day was Only fat women object to thin models?.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were facebook.com, twitter.com, en.wordpress.com, en.search.wordpress.com, and carolinecook.wordpress.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for lady gaga shoes, skinny models, abercrombie models, kelly brook pictures, and kelly brook.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

Only fat women object to thin models? October 2009
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2

Do you have the Abercrombie and Fitch look? December 2009
4 comments

3

Too Fat? Too thin – who cares? December 2009

4

Top 5 Fashion Blogs December 2009
6 comments

5

What to wear in Spring 2010 January 2010
2 comments

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