lists

Looking back

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Hello, it’s me
I was wondering if after all these years you’d like to meet

It’s been a while. Like I mentioned before, I’ve been working through December, and I thought I was busy during term time! I didn’t want to spam everyone with wishlists and gift guide nonsense because really I’d like this blog to have a bit of integrity and I’m feeling a bit disillusioned with buying and buying. Retail does that to you. What better time to start writing again, then, than New Year’s Eve? I’ll be spending tonight revising and drinking Babycham, plus I’m a little bit upset because I ordered like £20 worth of sushi and my order was cancelled because the restaurant decided not to be open, ugh.

Anyway, I thought I’d write a little post summing up some things I’ve been thinking about recently.

1. Patience. I’m going to sound like a middle-aged Facebook drama queen, but I’m learning that I really don’t need to waste my time on people who don’t dring any value to my life. I feel like I’ve spent a lot of my life being very patient, assuming the best of people to then be let down, and letting them take advantage of me, and now I don’t really have the time for it. Perhaps it’s Marie Kondo’s influence, but if someone doesn’t spark joy, I have to discard the, so to speak. It sounds harsh, I know, but I meet so many people that it makes no sense for me to be wasting energy on the ones that don’t enrich my life in any way.

2. Myself. I feel as though I’ve really been able to learn a lot about myself this year, about how I cope under pressure or in new environments, and what I genuinely value in life. I feel much more empowered than I did last year and I definitely give far fewer shits about things that don’t matter. Going forth, I’m going to continue to challenge and push myself to achieve to the best of my ability, and squeeze everything out of every oppotunity that I’m faced with.

3. Dreams. Continuing from that last point, I have a much clearer idea in my mind of where I want to be in five years, and what I need to do to get there. When I look back, I’m quite proud of what I’ve done to get to where I am at the moment, and even though not everything went to plan, I’m happy here and in the direction I’m going.

4. Instagram. Humblebragging here, and the shortest bullet of all, but my Instagram has got a pretty strong theme going on right now which I’m pretty proud of. So glad I went back to using my favourite filter.

Those are the key points for me, really. I don’t want to give too much away right now because I also want to write a post about resolutions to be published on New Year’s Day.

Have you made any great realisations this year? Self discoveries?

Happy New Year!

– Niko

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SUNDAY ROUNDUP /// 15/11/15

wpid-wp-1447604262858.jpgI’ve been quiet here this week… a few uni-related things but I’ve got myself together now and have a couple of ideas up my sleeve for next week! Anyway, your links for this week, mesdames et messieurs:

– Speaking of busy people, the Business of Fashion interviewed Giambattista Valli. Twelve. Collections. Per year.

Seoul’s Café Dior looks so crazy on the outside, but the interiors are divine…

– Toeing the line between heritage and modern can be difficult, but this Swedish house is perfect interior design inspiration.

– An interesting critical review on the V&A’s Japanese art collection from the Economist.

– If you’re ever wondering what a clueless and out-of-touch person looks like, this is it.

– Food52 (sort of) explains the Maillard reaction. Especially pertinent because I’ve been using a lot of beurre noisette this week (heaven.)

– Possibly the best advice column ever. I’ve always found that the most intelligent people I know tend not to go shouting it from the rafters.

– How many browser tabs is too many?

– Garance Doré on willpower. I can relate.

– Do you ever hate-wear things?

Now, time to get more work done!

– Niko

SUNDAY ROUNDUP /// 08.11.15

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This weekend I achieved approximately 10% of the things I was planning to do. Oh, lazy days…

In the spirit of Movember, Buzzfeed’s Try Guys get prostate exams. I know this is presented in a comedic way, but I think it’s good that they’re bringing attention to and normalising something that people are often embarrassed about, maybe saving a few lives in the process.

Garance Doré highlights another non-nail-art nail art. I actually saw this on Dita von Teese a few years ago, and I’d definitely like to try it at some point.

I really loved this look that The Sartorialist posted this week. Absolutely nothing in this pictures should work, but it just does, you know?

5 Simple Steps to Starting Your Day Right. Really helpful to me, as my attempts to take up running have been somewhat disrupted by a REALLY painful rib injury and poor planning.

Nubby Twiglet shares why your business NEEDS a press kit. As someone with a few projects planned in the future, this is definitely something I need to be thinking about.

About James Bond’s boots. I watched Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, and Skyfall for the first time last week and what struck me (aside from all the product placement) was how Bond wasn’t just classically well-dressed, but actually STYLISH. Props to the wardrobe department!

Pictures of plastic bags, coupled with quotes from Humans of New York. Somehow, this all makes sense.

Beautiful bridal shoot – I love the model’s profile, and that backless dress!

Did you see Kurt Cobain’s grody old cardigan was auctioned off this week? I suppose things have as much value as you give them.

Raf Simons speaks to Cathy Horyn about the pace of things at Dior. It’s not so surprising when reading this, to see why he left.

OH MY GOD. REMEMBER THIS?!

Off to buy my combats and one-shoulder top now. Byeeeeee!

– Niko

SUNDAY ROUNDUP /// 01.11.15

wpid-wp-1446400437095.jpgNovember already? Where is time going?! I ended up going to a student thing for Halloween but didn’t stay long because I felt like I was in an under-18s disco. That’s okay though, I just wanted an excuse to wear a flower crown. Here’s some reading material for your Sunday evening:

I meant to share this last Sunday, but forgot. Anyway, here’s the Rolling Stone’s profile on The Weeknd. He seems like such an interesting guy.

Alber Elbaz has left Lanvin! The reasons remain mysterious but it seems that his staff are not happy about this.

And on the subject of desginers leaving labels, Suzy Menkes tells us Why Fashion is Crashing.

These are quite old, but I’m always wowed by the results: Tom Ford makes over men for GQ. It’s amazing how he can transform these people from just regular guys, to would-be models – this is my favourite! You can see the rest in the suggested videos, I think there are seven in total.

Short on desk space? These circular planters are a great way to add some greenery to a room without imposing on your cluttered surfaces. Stylish, too!

Lana Del Rey is Exhausted. Oh, California!

Vogue shares its autumn nail polish picks, which I’m always game for.

The Paper Plane cocktail looks delicious and suitably gothic for these darkening evenings. Must try.

Four Pins talks about the fashion world appropriating football scarves, and adopting other elements of working class culture. The author even references normcore, which is especially pertinent to me given that I expressed my own disdain for it recently. Like, I’m not against football scarves or plain clothing, but let’s not pretend it isn’t what it is.

Nothing has made me want to start making clothing again as much as this spectacular dress. Love!

Who doesn’t love a Rube Goldberg machine with dramatic music?

Happy weekend!

– Niko

FRIGHT NIGHT: five halloween film picks

ginger-snaps-wallpaper-2Halloween is almost upon us! Honestly I’m not that bothered as it’s been over a decade since it was socially acceptable for me to demand food from strangers. If you’re a Halloween Scrooge like me, but still want to get in on the vibe, here are my top five Halloween film recommendations:

1. THE LOST BOYS /// Two boys move to a new town with their mother (player by the glorious Dianne Wiest), and the older of the two accidentally becomes a ‘half-vampire’ when he takes part in the initiation ceremony of Kiefer Sutherland and Bill S. Preston, Esquire’s totally heterosexual leather clad-gang. It is up to the younger boy to save his brother from an eternity of torn clothing and bad haircuts.

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2. TEEN WITCH /// In this cinematic masterpiece, Louise (played by Blake Lively’s half-sister) finds out that she has magic powers after a chance encounter with another witch. She begins to use these powers to make herself more popular at school and to make her friend ‘funky’, but she soon learns that this won’t bring her happiness. If you only watch one video in this article, please make it this one:

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3. SLEEPY HOLLOW /// Because it’s pretty much illegal to write an article about Halloween without a mention of Tim Burton, my choice from his filmography was Sleepy Hollow. It’s got all the key Burton motifs; Johnny Depp, black and white stripes, and gnarly trees. You’re all familiar with the storyline… headless horseman, etc. Always worth a re-watch just for young Depp, violence, and 18th century costumes.

4. GINGER SNAPS /// Ginger and Brigitte Fitzgerald are two sisters obsessed with death. Ginger is bitten by a werewolf on the same night her period starts, so has to balance growing a tail and bloodlust with sexual exploration and her budding sexuality, whilst Brigitte searches for a cure. The SFX are a bit dated these days but this is honestly such a brilliant film, not just because of the late 90s fashion, but as a critique on the way women and femininity are presented in popular media.

5. THE CRAFT /// We are the wierdos, Mister. Sarah moves to a new school, and makes friends with a group of girls who are rumoured to be witches. She soon discovers her own powers, but the consequences of their spells soon fall out of control and the girls terrorise Sarah when she tries to leave them, especially their ringleader, Nancy. The storyline doesn’t really sell it so I’ll just let you watch the trailer, shall I?

What are your Halloween favourites?

– Niko

EVERYDAY CARRY: what’s in my bag?

wpid-wp-1445706561516.jpgI love this kind of post, I’m a nosy person and it gives an interesting insight into that person’s personality. So I thought I’d share with all y’all what I’m lugging around every day.

THE BAG /// I bought this from Coccinelle in the January sales this year as a birthday present from me, to me. In a market saturated with Saffiano (this is your fault, Kors), the buttery-soft leather was a welcome change and the hardware is gold-toned, which is important to me. In nine months of use, there’s hardly any noticeable wear aside from on the bottom studs, so it’s definitely been a good investment.

wpid-wp-1445706565760.jpgWHAT’S INSIDE? ///
1. Folding multitool, because you never know when you’ll need some pliers or a tiny saw. Thanks Dad.
2. L’Occitane lavender hand cream. This came free with a magazine this month, so if you don’t want to pay full price, head down to your local newsagent and grab one.
3. Pencil case. I bought this from artbox a couple of years ago. I only ever use these pens because I’m left handed and they don’t smudge under my hand, plus the fine line makes my writing look neater.
4. Tissues. I have a cold. Just be thankful that I didn’t include a photogrph of the mountain of used ones that were also floating around my bag.
5. Wet wipes, for if there’s a gross thing.
6. Kiko Kiss Balm. It’s coconut flavour, it’s delicious, and it’s brilliant for nourishing lips. I don’t have a Kiko store nearby so I bought about four while I was in Florence so I would have a steady supply.
7. Engrish coin purse, covered in ink and suncream. I just keep small things in here, like painkillers and nail files and the tiny San Pio I found that one time.
8. Barbie x Tezenis folding hairbrush.
9. Liquorice pellets. I’m actually surprised there are only two tins because I have loads of these lifesavers. They’re great for when you have a tickly cough but you don’t want to start hacking up a lung in public. Nice, right?
10. Coccinelle purse. I was actually going to buy the matching bowling bag for this because I love the suede stripes, but I needed something that would fit A4 folders, so this was a good compromise. You really don’t realise the value of a high quality purse until you buy one and you’re no longer fighting to open the zip, so smooth!
11. Hand sanitiser. I touch a lot of strange animals.
12. Swiss Army Knife. This comes in handy pretty much all the time, I think everyone needs one. Cutting food? On-the-go manicure? Toothpick? Sorted!
13. House keys. Broken Jack Wills torch and Endless Edamame keyrings.
14. Torch keyring. Useful.
15. Rhodia webnotebook aka BEST NOTEBOOK EVER. It has a 0.5cm spaced dot grid which is perfect for graphs and stuff, and makes just looks more clean than lines.

Do you guys carry anything weird around? Once I found a dead mouse in mine. Obviously my cat wanted to make sure I was taking a packed lunch to college.

– Niko