Saturday, 21 November 2015

Ringo I love you, yeah yeah yeah

I really love Ringo Starr. I like The Beatles as a whole, but honestly I love Ringo more than I do The Beatles and arguably would never have even gotten into The Beatles if it weren't for Ringo. He's just at that next level, much more than simply being my favourite band member, y'know? I even spent 6 months making a zine about him last year, trying to condense my feelings into 28 pages that would hopefully do him justice. When I loose faith in the world and consider living out the rest of my days as a bitter hermit, I remember Ringo is out there and begin to feel better. He's just the loveliest human who's always tried to spread peace and happiness wherever he goes. He's been walked all over, put up with all kinds of crap from all kinds of sources including his friends, is regularly disrespected as a musician despite his major accomplishments, has had his own health betray him on numerous occasions, and hasn't let any of it turn him into a douche and still believes in trying to make the world a better place. I look up to him as inspiration enormously, I feel a motherly affection towards him like I need to protect him at all costs even though he's, what, three times older than me? And obviously there's the fangirl lust. Which a lot of people don't get, they call him ugly but I can only presume these people don't have eyes because damn son.

And if his smile doesn't melt your heart then there's obviously something wrong with you.

I got an email through yesterday from his mailing list informing that he's selling a bunch of his stuff in an auction. That probably makes this sound like a sponsored post, but it's in fact me weeping over the fact these iconic things of his are up for grabs and way out of my budget. Like this isn't some throw away thing he's used once for advertising sake, these are his personal belongings dating from way way back. Jewellery, clothing, instruments. I keep imagining if I bought his clothing I'd know what he smells like, is that way creepy?? Probably.

These are his rings that he wore throughout his entire career as a Beatle and beyond. If you look at his fingers in any picture of him from the '60s you'll be looking at these rings. That's so amazing to me that these are for sale it blows my mind.

The suit he wore in A Hard Day's Night, and the famous oyster black pearl drum kit he bought in 1963 from Drum City with Brian Epstein. This is the drum kit, that became an iconic part of both his and The Beatles' image, the one he played on the Ed Sullivan show among many many others throughout the years, that he continued to use throughout the Beatles entire career until it fell into the hands of Paul McCartney in the 1970s and lived on his farm in Scotland and was used throughout Wings before he eventually gave it back to Ringo. And it's up for sale to the public, can you wrap your head around that?? I can't!

This is just the tip of the iceberg, he's selling literally hundreds of things spanning his entire life time. I spent yesterday evening crying over it all.

Unrelated and coincidentally, I also drew Ringo recently:

The quote above it is by Ringo and reads: “I want to make the world a better place. This is why I do all this. I just put out what I put out, which is to be more understanding and more giving every day, and it rubs off great. My fantasy is that one minute, one day, one month, one year, the whole world will go peace and love. And you never know. It could come true.”

I hope it comes true too, Ringo. And I hope when it does, people mean it.

Friday, 20 November 2015

Wear your love like heaven

I've felt completely uninspired by my wardrobe lately, feeling like I've lost my way. The trouble is I like a few different styles, so my wardrobe ends up a confusing place. I've been suckered in by far too many faux-70s high street pieces lately, feeling an irrational need to stock up before the mainstream changes its mind - not helped in part that I'm yet to find good vintage shops in my new location and will often end up at the shopping mall out of sheer boredom. This needs to stop!

I need to go back to my roots - mid to late 1960s mod with touches of the psychedelic. I was looking at the darkest depths of my Etsy favourites and all of the floaty tent dresses I didn't buy and I wanted to weep. This is the era my heart lies in and always has - Mia Farrow in Rosemary's Baby has always been my main fashion inspiration and the reason I began wearing vintage in the first place.

Part of the reason I've been swayed away so badly is how sheer expensive vintage has gotten nowadays with everyone jumping on the bandwagon. I don't say that with any sense of elitism, just pure frustration at the amount of overcharging that goes on as a result. The original lure of vintage was quality clothing at a fraction of the price of the tat sold at the likes of Topshop, where you can pay £50 for a dress that will have fallen apart within a few months. Now said tat is often cheaper, when even charity shops charge £30+ for a dress and anyone thinks they can be a vintage seller by marking up any old secondhand goods for £££. It feels like capitalism ruins everything eventually. Boo to that!

It's also a shame because I so prefer vintage over modern clothing, it doesn't even compare. It fits nicer, it's made from better quality fabrics, it comes in patterns and colours that just don't exist nowadays (I can't understand people's aversion to colour nowadays, even vintage reproduction is so muted.) I'm also overly sentimental and like knowing that my clothes have lived a life before me and wondering what that might have been like. Who were they, why did they buy it, where did they go, what did they do, what did they wear with it? It's like owning little pieces of living history, and that's probably my favourite thing about the vintage scene. Keeping the past alive, and feeling like I'm taking that step back in time.

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

London town

The week before last, on a bit of a whim, I decided that I just had to visit London. It's my home and I hadn't been in a few years and felt like playing tourist. I arranged to go by coach which saved me a lot of money, but my was it exhausting! I had to get up at 2.30am and I'd only managed to get an hours sleep before that. I managed to get two more uncomfortable hours on the coach, but exhaustion and lack of spoons was definitely an issue throughout the day. I still had a wonderful time though!

Spookily just after I'd booked my coach ticket I received an email from Orla Kiely's mailing list letting me know there was going to be a warehouse clearance in London on the day I just happened to be going. How exciting! I'd never been to a designer clearance and didn't know what to expect, but decided I'd be a fool not to go and at least look, especially as it was on my way anyway. I truly wasn't expecting to buy anything, but I underestimated just how cheap everything would be (for Orla clothes, anyway!) Who can resist £200+ dresses being sold for £40 each?? I'd of been mad not to! I bought two, and the most beautiful handbag of my dreams which was reduced by 85% on account of it's broken strap, which I'm hoping can be fixed by my dad. I know this will become my every day bag, it's the most perfect size and I feel it's yellow shade will go with everything. Such beautiful things, I still can't quite believe my luck.

Afterwards I headed to Camden where the first record shop I wanted to visit was located. I visited three different shops, and picked up some amazing things! I actually found it difficult to decide on several occasions, as there were so many records I could of happily spent my money on. I was particularly excited with finding the Jimi Hendrix LPs. It's a double from the early 70s featuring both Are You Experienced and Axis: Bold as Love. I've wanted these for the longest time, but they're both difficult to find. I hadn't realised it was a double LP until I checked the discs, I'd already decided to buy it thinking it was just Are You Experienced alone so I flipped in my shoes seeing it was Axis: Bold As Love too. Odessey and Oracle is another that I've never been able to find in the flesh before either, so it was a lucky day indeed! I have to say, my record collection has really started coming together and being something I'm deeply proud of this past year, I can't tell you how happy that makes me!

My lunch, which was too yummy not to share! Mini pancakes smothered in warm Nutella, and I was kindly given an extra 5 pancakes for free for waiting so patiently while it cooked. I could barely move after eating so much, but it was worth it!

After I was done at Camden, I was actually beginning to get quite tired and didn't want to tempt myself further so decided to give the other record stores a miss. I mooched around the Stables for a little bit, and then headed on over to Covent Garden so I could visit the Moomin store in the hope I might find something Hemulen related. I love Moomins, but the Hemulen in particular has always been of huge personal importance to me as I basically am the Hemulen. But the trouble is because they're a rather minor character it's really hard to find anything of them. So I was delighted to find this figurine, especially as it was near the end when I'd all but given up. He's made from a fuzzy material like Sylvanian Families, I'm glad to have him sitting on my desk.

Because it was Halloween day, many people were dressed up or wearing ghoulish accessories which made me smile. Halloween isn't a big thing here, and Londoners have a tendency to take themselves a bit too seriously (which I say as a born and bred Londoner myself!) so it was refreshing to see so much silliness. To round off the day I even saw the RAF Red Arrows fly over as I was enjoying a much needed coffee.

I really enjoyed taking an impromptu day trip, and knowing how cheaply it can be done has really inspired me to make the most of whats to be had in the UK. I don't wish to jinx it, but I'm really hoping for my next trip early next year I might be able to finally make it up to Liverpool and do all the nerdy Beatles things I've always wanted to do. Fun!

Monday, 9 November 2015

The scarf problem

Scarves are something that I really love, but I always feel pretty awkward about wearing. They come in such pretty designs which barely show when folded up and worn, I'm never sure what neckline best compliments it, or the best way in which is should be styled. I usually take inspiration from my beloved Syd Barrett and wear them with a shirt, but I fancied a change.

I've had this vintage Queen scarf for longer than I know. It's a real thing of beauty, with their intricate crest design proudly centre piece in gold. As much as I love a good band shirt, I really love when bands release other clothing methods you can show your devotion. But how to wear it? So I decided to take inspiration from my favourite member of Queen; Roger Taylor was quite fond of a scarf himself, and this particular outfit was inspired by his neckerchiefed look at 1981's Montreal show. I also followed him by keeping it simple with all black, with just the pop of colour on my legs (which was supposed to match the pop of blue in the scarf design which mostly got hidden in the folds of fabric. Oh well!)

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