Thursday, 26 May 2011

Yastik? Bluddy fantastic!

While 'fashion' carries on weeping from the loss of - no not McQueen silly - but Ozek leaving the industry, the world of interiors can start running through giant daisy covered fields of joy to have him entering their cosmos.

I know this is crude but there's simply no way to describe these other than...
                                                                                                                'orgasms in cushion form'.
There, i said it. I know, I know, you're trying to swallow down the vomit I just induced but truly, all other words have escaped me. You can report abuse to blogspot or un-follow once you've been to the shop and decided i'm wrong. It's just off Kensington Church Street.


I suppose when you find out that Rifat Ozbek is the seamstress behind them, their unadulterated loveliness is just not that surprising, but still the concept (and correct me if i'm wrong) - a cushion shop (how did no one think of that one before?) is completely original. Now, when can you say that nowadays - eh? Eh?

They make me think of India, Africa, Peru, (and considering the designer's roots, they would prob. make me think of Turkey had I been), the 60s, the 70s, my mother (I suppose the 'orgasm in cushion form' reference gains its inappropriateness right about now... ), my great grannny who wore leapard print raincoasts and drank Dubonet, beautiful old curtains we used to have at The Ferry House, my old nursery - everything I love really.

I could genuinely sit and gaze longingly at them for hours, never really needing to move, eat or satisfy any other need, until my little hunched cross-legged figure is whittled down and finally turns into buttermilk,

                                              just like the tigers from Little Black Sambo.

Not sure Rifat wants buttermilk all over his shop floor though, so I'll stick to a standing ovation instead. 

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Keep It In Yer Trousers Please - I've Got A Plane To Catch

I'm not really a bag person, more a bag lady, if a bag anything. I'm often seen wandering the streets wheeling one of those miniature suitcases, with various things hanging from my person in a uncomfortable fashion - notebooks, laptops, food, pieces of clothing I'm not wearing or I've forgotten to take to the menders. Things even hang from my my hair sometimes. (If you know me this makes sense.) I found my favourite biro I thought I'd lost on Sat. in my hair in fact. My dad retrieved it with much surprise. It wasn't much of a surprise to me though - my hair's been hijacking items for years (a bit like Roald Dahls' Mr Twit's cornflake-filled beards but cleaner and with less cornflakes). 

On a school trip once when I was 11, my hair shoplifted a whoopie cushion from a joke shop I used to frequent in Tetbury, unbeknownst to me. (The staple on the packaging had got caught.) I didn't notice until we were halfway down the motorway on our bus back to school. I felt terrible. My hair stubbonly refused to apologise and take it back so my friends and I (guiltily) made use of the stolen item, just so it didn't go to waste. (It felt awful just awful.)

Anyway, back to bags... Here is the lovely 70s bag I use, which was passed down from my mum. Sadly it holds some unpleasant memories I'd like to erase by finding a new one. 

"But what are these unpleasant memories?" I hear you ask, hoping for a dose of schadenfreude to brighten your morning.

Oh dear, really - do you want to hear? Well alright... The incident happened 3-years ago after I'd fallen asleep on someone's sofa in Ibiza. When I woke up I realised some cretin (who won't be named but he definitely has a name... that i know...) had peed (no not peered spelt wrong - actually peed) in my bag. And the worst thing was I became aware of it so quickly because the said cretin had informed his friend about the incident before passing out on the sofa next to me. I could've forgiven a drunken pee, in Ibiza, but i meeean!

Looking back, I suppose that's what you get if you go to Ibiza, but either way, it struck me as a rather irrating choice of urinal at the time, ESPECIALLY as I had to go straight to the airport when I woke up AND I had to put my bag in a plastic bag to carry on the plane, which did not help my bag lady credentials any further. AND to pour add salt, lemon and a bit of tabasco into an already pee-sodden wound, I HAD no choice but to pick up my damp wrinkled passport by hand in order to show it to passport control. And yes he did ask, and yes i did lie.

Anyway, despite a sud-filled wash in the machine, giving it that oh-so-fashionable faded look (vintage has never looked so haunting), I've never really gotten over it and have been looking for one ever since.  

But I can't believe I've only just discovered ASOS bags. They're FAB! Because if like me your debit card frowns and tuts everytime you think you want a new one, these are definitely a solution - all under £100. 

Effing nice - no?

Love this one's name - the 'Aztec Barrel Bag'
This would obviously only fit a small hamster

And here's a man bag thrown in for good measure. Although, I'm pretty sure this is my satchel from Peterborough High school...

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Fallen in love with...

Tanya Brett's 'Ice Souls' Exhibition

At first I thought 'Hmmm... animal sculptor - twee?' (book cover judging terribly) BUT the moment I clicked onto her website I gave this blasphemous thought a good spanking - twee couldn't be further from it - she IS TRULY BRILLIANT!

I can't look at her work without feeling emotional (and slightly cleptomaniacal). When I'm rich.... I'm going to kidnap her and employ her as my personal sculptor - a bit like King Leopold's son Archduke Rudolf did with Beethoven (without the kidnapping bit - he just paid to keep him in the country).

Her most recent exhibition, showing at the Jonathan Cooper Gallery, just off the Fulham Road is a trumph. I haven't loved an exhibition in its entirity like this for a long time.

Called ICE SOULS and it consists of drawings and sculptures of arctic creatures - PENGUINS, WALRUSES, WOLVES, ARCTIC FOXES, HARES and POLAR BEARS. Her materials she uses - CLAY and PORCELAIN - lend beautifully to the icy theme.

Sadly, as is often the case with art - this photograph in no way does it justice. In its proper 3-D form, this beautiful bear is paddling in a circular motion through what must be imaginary water by the way its fur seems to trail in one direction, (like my hair does when I go swimming - usually round in circles - i'm not very good at it).

Tanya said: "I became obsessed with this film of a swimming bear on 'Planet Earth'. I thought how beautiful it was, and I was thinking how I could sculpt it as my materials are quite heavy. What also struck me was how big this creature was, yet it had such lightness in the water, which made it look so vulnerable.'

And before I dragged myself - fingernails at the doorframe - away from her exhibtion, Tanya told me: "This is the first exhibtion I feel really proud of,' which was so nice to hear as artists are too often critical to the last about their work - especially on the day of their launch.

Lastly, I remembered that polar bears are on the endangered list - something the artist hadn't forgotten either, as a percentage of her exhibtion went to the Hauser Bears charity.

A saint and a genius all round (VOm!).

Sunday, 15 May 2011

My Week of Beasts

To avoid appearing too like The Daily Mail, I'll keep any comments brief. They'll be no stories about cats saving diabetics lives by calling 999 OR pictures of seals making cute human faces. No monkeys in aprons either. One must put a foot down at somewhere...

Lovely little chick


Charlie wins for me. Better chick to face hew. Mine's a bit too sallow. Should've gone for a brown chick really. Also my nose is too big but that's not really the chick's fault... (Although his chick looks like it's about to attempt suicide so perhaps I can steal back a point there.)

Lovely puppy on the beach.

Sorry - pics getting a bit vommy now.

Lully donkies and a girl with a teatowel (See i promised no aprons, teatowels only.)

Paddy deathstaring a donkey. That got a bit freaky after a while. The donkey had a crazed look on his face and sterted pawing (can they paw or do they hoof/huf?) at the ground. It was a bit like they were psyching each other at the beginning of the gauntlet in Gladiators. I had to take Paddy away before things turned really nasty.

Me being chase by some cows...
Now I look at this, I must admit they look very dorment but I PROMISE you they had been chasing me, galloping in fact, with some speed. Trick of the light I suppose...

And the pièce de résistance of 'my week in beasts' - Introducing Paddy (dog) and Will (brother) entering the dog agility course at the Milton show - a very serious and impressive event, where highly trained dogs jump obediantly through hoops, across narrow beams and up and down seesaws. Timing is crucial. Enter Will and Paddy:

It gets better i promise...

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Loaded? Have a garden? Like zero-gravity? Thought so. These are for you...

When I'm rich and have a garden, these are the first things I'm going to buy for it. They might not look much but in reality they're incredibly stylish - think Mad Men al fresco - and brilliantly designed. If you're sitting up straight, you've got the foot bar to rest your feet on, the moveable head cushion to keep your loaf in check and the very comfortable and rather stylish curved wooden and coated steel arm rests. BUT (and this is the clever bit) as soon as you decide to take a trip to rancho relaxo, the chair reclines with you, as long as your feet are on the bar and your hands on the arm rests. It happens with such ease you'll feel like you're in space... in the 50s. They're by Lafuma, you can find them online and they seem to range from £110-£215.

'Siegle' I think is the nicest colour - means 'oatmeal' in French. Gives it that 50s look, but forest and tweed are nice too. Check out the boyfriend doing a demo (not sure he knew he was doing a demo at the time - especially with all that zero-gravity technology going on). Not sure he's really doing it justice either with the peturbed look of concentration going on there but perhaps that shows how easy it is to be in your own little world, without the worrying thoughts of 'am i sitting up straight?' or 'am i at a 45degree angle?' rudely intruding.

He's probably looking at my blog.