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The 10 Worst First-Date Looks…

Last night I was struck by a strange realisation. It occurred to me that when choosing that perfect date outfit, my choices become more and more eccentric, experimental and… repulsive, if that dreaded feeling of first date cold feet sets in. Does anyone else get that, or is it just me?

I am known for being the most fickle person in the world, as far as my love life is concerned. It has to be said, it’s entirely true. I can wholeheartedly accept a man’s offer of a date one day, and within twenty-four hours, frantically spend a sleepless night trying to think of a genuine reason to cancel. Genuine, so that I’m not suddenly that bitch who lied to get away. It doesn’t matter how much I fancy the pants off of him, I get nervous about dates in the same way that I get nervous about job interviews, business meetings, dentist appointments and basically anything that requires me to behave like a grown up.

Somewhere along the lines, this ‘fear’ of first dates commitment has manifested into a strange inner Iris Apfel who pulls together the craziest outfits my usually conventional wardrobe can muster; a combination of stripes and spots, neon and print, over-sized and extravagant, all in a strange hope that it will send him running. It’s extreme, but it works like a charm. No man wants to date a glittering, glimmering, animal-adorning traffic cone who jingles with every step due to the sheer amount of jewellery stacked from fingertips to armpits.

I’ve spent my evening giggling as I ponder over which of the latest runway pieces would send any man running to the hills fastest…

1. Excessive amounts of fur/wool/feathers/general fluffiness.

If you walk into a restaurant wearing this scarlet Prada fur dress, for example:

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Prada

You could probably chase him out of the building so fast, you wouldn’t even have chance to ask about the specials. It’s no secret that men do not like fussy fashion, and while a fur coat can definitely be sexy, there’s fur… and there’s Muppet. Equally, while shearling lined jackets reappear every autumn, this fluffy blue item would have the same effect… wear the two together, and you’ll definitely not have to worry about stammering over his offer of a second date!

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Gucci

fur

1. Dolce & Gabbana. 2. Chloé. 3. Vladimiro Gioia. 4. Givenchy. 5. Chloé.

2. Sparkles

If he can see you from miles away, the two million hand-sewn sequins of your evening dress sending millions of tiny beams of light into the sky like Tinkerbell on LSD, it only means that he’ll have plenty of warning to make a run for it before you even arrive. If you actually like your date, a sequin skirt or a sequin-encrusted lapel on a silk blazer would look amazing (but not together – that would be too much), or equally, a crystal bracelet or necklace (again, just one) can really complete an outfit, but something like this…

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Marco de Vincenzo

…will probably a) blind him, and b) repel him.

sequin

1. Dolce & Gabbana. 2. Yves Saint Laurent. 3. Manish Arora. 4. Tim Ryan.

3. Glitter Boots

In the same strand as the sparkly, sequin coated garments of above, but these deserve a point all to themselves… they’re just so… disco.

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Saint Laurent

shoes

1. Saint Laurent. 2. Saint Laurent. 3. Saint Laurent. 4. Saint Laurent. 5. Saint Laurent.

4. Strange geometric patterns

The mysterious creature that is the human male is easily startled, confused and extremely judgmental. If you’re walking around looking like a walking set of traffic lights, a human puzzle set for children, or generally just like someone who is overly fond of your basic shapes, they will get spooked. Maybe it’s a lasting trauma of all of those hours that they spent stuck on a ‘peg-and-hole’ game at nursery (sorry.. kindergarten?)

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Chanel

print

1. Peter Pilotto. 2. Stella Jean. 3. Chloé. 4. Just Cavalli

5. Orange or Purple lips

Neon eye makeup (3)

I tend to stick to the two signature shades of nude-pink or bold red, and while I’m yet to meet a guy who doesn’t like red lipstick, I can still see that wary glance at my lips if every they have been coated in lashings of MAC’s Ruby Woo before they lean in for a kiss. Nevertheless, those glances only last a moment, but as soon as I step into experimenting with more daring shades; hot pinks, oranges, purples… no more kisses for me. It suddenly just isn’t worth the lipstick marks, and the strange explanations that would have to take place if anyone were to noticed that bright purple stain on his neck.

lipstick

1. Mac Pure Heroine. 2. Bobbi Brown. 3. Dior. 4. Illamasqua. 5. Barry M.

6.  1980s

While I’m a 90s kid, I have always strongly believed that what happened in the 80s, stays in the 80s. They can keep their big hair, big shoulders, big, noisy, flashy clothes. They can keep bright leg warmers (but blacks and neutrals, however, are acceptable) and parachute pants and disco-gym gear, and they can definitely keep Madonna. We don’t need such nonsense here, regardless of what the trends tell me. It will only end if tears if we allow the 80s trends back into our lives, I can tell you. Are we so incapable of learning from our mistakes? Walk into a bar dressed as Bananarama, and he’ll be sure to make his excuses. Especially if you go for a matching haircut, but let’s not go that far…

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Chanel

80s

1. Fay. 2. Tsumori Chisato. 3. Topshop. 4. Mango.  5. Vivienne Westwood.

8. Monsters Inc.

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Schiaparelli

Do you suspect that he’ll prove to be particularly difficult to get rid of? Go couture, in the fluffiest sense of the word, and take a very large leaf from the Monsters Inc book for your evening’s inspiration. Seriously, what man would want to be seen walking down the street with a character of a Pixar movie?

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Schiaparelli

monster

1. Just Cavalli. 2. P.A.R.O.S.H. 3. Yes London. 4. ASOS. 5. Cédric Charlier.

8. Bag Lady/Homeless Chic

The clue is in the name with these two…

Most often known as the signature style of the Olsen twins, very few people can pull off homeless chic like they can. For one thing, drop the sunglasses – they are a vital part of making the look work, and you’re going for a look that is one step too close to actual homeless person.

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Vivienne Westwood

bag

1. Junya Watanabe. 2 Barbara Bui. 3. Brunello Cucinelli. 4. The Row. 5. ASOS.

9. The Walking Laundry Bag

While tartan is in, I had no idea that tailoring a plastic laundry bag into a dress or coat was acceptable? If you add a well-told tale about how this is your only outfit, because you had to give your clothes to a [insert ridiculously eccentric character here] on your way to the laundrette, he’ll disappear quickly enough. It brings a whole new meaning to the term ‘crazy bag lady’.

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Celine

tartan

1. Comme Des Garcons Vintage. 2. Comme Des Garcon Vault. 3. Vivienne Westwood. 4. Lavinia. 5. Comme Des Garcons Vintage.

Wear these five items together in a crazy mis-mash of tartan, and you’ll be somewhere close to the Celine laundry bag outfit.

10. Runway Beauty…

Runway makeup is all about art and extravagance, and therefore, as we all know that the average man’s understanding of makeup is limited to a more natural look, 80% of the looks that emerge on catwalks will chase any guy away…

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Alexander McQueen

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Yohji Yamamoto

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Vivienne Westwood.

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The 3 L's

Blogging Advice from Queen of the Blogosphere

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Funny story. I recently just so happened to bump into a well known fashion and lifestyle blogger here in London (because let’s face it, none of us can ever so much as step outside to buy a pint of milk and a newspaper without crossing several celebrities, bloggers, youtubers, and that one hit wonder guy from the 80’s along the way), and she was kind enough to allow me to pick her brain on how to become a ‘successful blogger’.

She was quite a character, and I can see why London loves her; eccentricity is the best acceptable social quirk of the city.

A few words of advice from an anonymous (for once) blogging queen…

1. ‘Darling, you must model and photograph you outfit every day – and never be seen in the same outfit twice.’

2. ‘If you’re serious about fashion, or photography, or writing, or all three, then darling, remain serious and professional at all times.’

3. ‘Remember, if you want your blog to be read worldwide, darling, keep the sarcasm to a minimum. It doesn’t translate well.’

4. Don’t complain, darling. Don’t bitch or rant or whine or talk about the negatives of the industry – any industry.

5. Set up a vlog. Everyone has a vlog, now days, darling.’

And this one quite literally sent my jaw dropping to the pavement…

6: ‘Darling, until you get noticed and people start sending you things, you absolutely have to be willing to spend at least five hundred pounds a month on new clothing.’

I feel like I ought to be running merrily into the hills, as if I have been granted the secret to eternal life… actually no, I think anyone who wants to live forever is a fool, so let’s say, as if I have been granted the secret to eternal youth. But… I’m not. Instead, I left feeling downright disappointed. I had sat with them hoping for inspiration and instead I came away with… rebellion. Rebellious inspiration, but rebellion all the same.

I really admire this person, and I read their blog pretty much daily, but this simply isn’t the direction that I want to move in, and I don’t want to be another person who thinks, ‘ok, this is what has to be done to succeed in this industry, these are the key criteria to be met.’ I don’t have £500 a month to spend on clothes that are only going to be worn once each, and I refuse to believe that most fashion bloggers do either. As for no ranting and whining… but I’m so much more eloquent when I have something to complain about! As I mentioned in The Hub, my positive expressions are generally limited to ‘wonderful, ‘beautiful’ and ‘lovely/love’… used repeatedly in a single sentence for added effect.

Maybe this decision has set me on the course of committing blogging suicide, and this will therefore never be read by the legions of followers that everyone who sets up a fashion/photography/any blog at all hopes to have, and I ought to listen to the oh-so-wise (not sarcasm for once – she actually was a very knowledgable cookie), blogger and keep my blog polished, serious, and expensive to maintain due to the conveyor belt wardrobe. But then again, I can’t help but think that that would just be so… dull. I’d prefer not to cut out my snarky comments, my sarcasm and my make-believe wardrobe because I can’t afford to frequently re-stock the real one. I don’t want to play make believe just so that people will like me, and my blog. After all, though life is all about daring to be different, there are well-read blogs out there that break at least a few of these ‘rules’… look at The Man Repeller as just one example.

Therefore, the sarcasm, bitching, whining and virtual pouting will remain, darling, (that’s not mockery, that is actually my pet name of choice), alongside the cheerier stuff.

P.S… I have not overruled the possibility that said blogger went out of her way to give me the worst advice ever for her own amusement (or perhaps I’m marking it as an option purely because that would be my response of choice..) Ooo, the conspiracy theories are suddenly running riot in my mind…

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