Monday, 31 January 2011
I've been obsessed with this lobster for years...
Well, I was walking on sunshine. One silly goal I set myself for the blog is to actually post photos in the month in which they were taken. So here I'm sneaking in on January 31st with photos that were taken on January 10th--oops. On the other hand, look at how amaaaazing the weather was on January 10th, the day I left Barcelona. We went on a bike ride down along the seawall by the beach, turned our pasty faces up to the sunshine, and finally enjoyed a coffee down on the boardwalk. A €4 coffee---eek!
I love this outfit. It's not typically "blogworthy," and I don't expect anyone to be rushing off inspired, but it's 100% Emily, and mostly composed of things I owned before I'd heard of fashion blogs. Plus, pretty much perfect for a bike ride on a sunny day...
I'm off back to Barcelona in a week and a half, therefore perpetuating the myth on my blog that I live there. Some London pictures coming in the meantime though!
P.S. Thanks so much for all the great comments on yesterday's post. I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one who struggles with the yea-fashion-nay-consumerism dilemma. : )
No shoes, albeit briefly, on January 10th!
photos by Albert
blouse: Desigual (gift)
cashmere cardigan: old (gift)
necklace: (apparently the only necklace I will wear now) Les Jumelles
sunglasses: Sanborns (in Mexico)
Sunday, 30 January 2011
Blogland is full of shopping bans. Some of them are personal, and some are group shopping bans, encouraging remixing of and appreciation for items you already own. I’ve never felt a need to join in; I already remix and appreciate my clothes. Yet I’m declaring February, and likely March, a shopping off limits time. No shopping for new, vintage, or thrifted clothes, jewllery or shoes. Why?
It’s not for economic reasons. Of course, not buying any clothes can only be good for my budget, but I’m not bad with money, I was brought up with my mom and my depression-era grandmother saying “never spend money you don’t have,” and “don’t get into debt if you can possibly help it.” I don’t even buy that much, I just consider what I might buy. So, while every penny spent adds up, it’s not my motivation to stop shopping.
It’s not because I have too much stuff. I do have too much stuff, of course. Almost everyone in the first world does, and certainly every fashion blogger I’ve ever come across has much too much stuff. Still, truth be told, I like my stuff, and that’s not my motivation either.
I’m going on a shopping ban because shopping has somehow transitioned, mysteriously in the last year, from being something I occasionally do, to being a “hobby.” I loathe this idea. I don’t want to have materialism as a hobby. If people ask me what my hobbies are, I generally say “reading, writing, languages…” But shopping? Hunting through shops real and virtual for clothes that I tell myself I’ll wear on bike rides or picnics, or to the pub, or to the theatre, when really I spend more time shopping than I spend on most of those activities?
I shop because I think it makes me happy to find lovely things. But shopping actually makes me unhappy. Most of the time, it’s a solitary activity, trawling through endless racks or photos of rubbish, time (and money) that could be spent doing interactive, social things with people I like. If I never shopped, I would have to do other things, like read, go to galleries, go for walks in the park. Even if I spent all that time still on myself, I’m sure I could contribute to my own outward appearance in a more effective way. Learning to do my hair properly would make a more concrete difference to my appearance than a new dress. I’m sure I would find better things to spend the money on too, like lunches with friends, or flights to Barcelona…. Things that would form the fabric of my life, and not only contribute to the fabric in my closet.
During one of the happiest summers I can remember, I bought practically nothing. I was walking the streets, riding my bike, going to the beach, hanging out. I was just living life. And I plan to recapture that, even if I have to force myself to do so.
Pictures from my pre-blog life, in which I'm doing various things, in various places, wearing various clothes...
Thursday, 27 January 2011
It's so cold today! And by so cold I mean about 0 degrees, which I know is nothing compared to what some of you have. I checked the weather in my birthplace (Thunder Bay, Ontario) this morning, and it said it was -17 and snowing, so I can hardly complain. But it did snow a bit during my field trip, which was walking for two hours around Bloomsbury, looking at the old census maps of London done in the 19th century (yep, the same ones that had a colour category for "semi-criminal" streets) and seeing how the city had changed. It was über-fascinating, but absolutely freezing. And yes, I wore multiple sweaters.
***Edit: I mean 0 degrees celsius, etc. I'm Canadian, we use celsius, and I live in England, and they use it here too. Just since there seems to be some confusion. ; ) *** (and that's 32 degrees Fahrenheit) ; D
Anyway, January is a blah month that needs all the colour it can get. I picked up this blouse in the sales after Kings' Day (the Spanish present giving day on January 6th). My boyfriend talked me into it, since I seem to have developed a dislike in the last few years for floral blouses, but I'm really glad he did. I love the colours and the lace, and it gave my wardrobe a much-needed revitalization. And I love this skirt. It's one of those pieces that make me wonder what I wore before I owned it. Hmmm, it could probably use an iron, however.
blouse: Pepe Jeans (sale)
skirt: French Connection (charity shop)
belt: Spitalfields market
earrings: a café in Mexico City
Monday, 24 January 2011
Albert told me that it was 2 degrees (that's celcius, before you all go crazy) in Barcelona last night, but a couple of weeks ago it was absolutely gorgeous, and we went for a walk through the historical neighbourhoods of Born, the Barri Gotic, and Raval. There was a slight chill between the buildings, but glorious sunshine all around. I'm so glad I have Barcelona to visit and feel a little at home in. Home is a bit of a strange concept at the moment. Half my family is currently in Vancouver and the other half in other parts of the country, my boyfriend in Barcelona, me in London... but for how long? And what next? Uncertainty is a way of life.
As for the outfit, I think this could be called "Ruby Slippers shops her suitcase." Basically a collection of all my frequently-worn items. I was pretty happy to get back to... the three winter items I hadn't brought with me!
Sitting on the steps of the art school where Picasso studied!
Photos of me by Albert
dress: Pepe Jeans
sweater: French Connection (charity shop)
belt and bag: were my mother's
shoes: Steve Madden via ebay
necklace: Les Jumelles
Friday, 21 January 2011
January has been my shoe-buying month these past few years. I discovered a couple of years ago that I had hardly any winter shoes, and since then have been slowly building up a collection in the January sales. The boots in the post below were last years contributions.
I'm a bit nervous that both this years' selections are heels, even if low heels. I'm one of those people who really has issues walking in heels. The last pair I bought were in South Africa, and walking for about ten minutes total over the course of an evening out left the balls of my feet stinging furiously... I'm such a wimp. Those shoes got unceremoniously thrust in a box in Vancouver. However, I kind of found this years offerings irresistible, and they're both comfortable and well made as heels go, so to I'm going to do my best to overcome my nightmare ankles. And also to leave the house on time in the morning, since I definitely can't walk too fast!
This sight made me happy the other day. Sometimes it still doesn't sink in properly that I live in East London... the mythical East London of small and big time gangsters, flower girls, artsy parties, and Indian restaurants, depending on your decade. I saw a map in the Museum of London the other day which had all of London in the late 19th century colour blocked into various socio-economic groupings. My street was listed as "Poor/Semi-criminal." Oh yeah!
Wednesday, 19 January 2011
These pictures were taken on one of those days during the Christmas break when I was working like a mad woman on my three essays that were all due after Christmas. After spending the morning cooped up hunched over my laptop in my pyjamas, I was relieved when we went for lunch since it gave me the opportunity not only to get out, but to get dressed. I don't know about you guys, but sometimes I can feel myself getting progressively less productive the longer I stay in my pyjamas. I start feeling less and less comfortable as the day wears on, and usually finish pulling out my eyebrows one by one (weird, I know). Of course, when I do get dressed I still want comfort, so my trusty yellow cardigan makes its third appearance on the blog, and my grey tights make another of many, many appearances.
This bar is called "nun's breast." Snort!
photos by Albert
dress (as skirt): Mango
sweater: Three Feathers Vintage
boots: Steve Madden (sales last year)
ring: c/o Hivennnn
Sunday, 16 January 2011
I was featured by the sweet lovely Amber Rose on her blog Laughing with Broken Eyes. She and I started blogging around the same time and I've loved reading her heartfelt reflections on life since the beginning. If you're interested in learning more about the method behind the madness at Ruby Slipper Journeys, head here! Thanks so much, Amber Rose!
There was brilliant sunshine this morning, so I thought I'd shake up the Barcelona pictures that are still to come a bit with a snapshot of London. Obviously the sun took off as soon as I got outdoors so here's a snapshot of my garden wall instead, and me looking towards the gathering stormclouds. Eek!
dress: French Connection (charity shop)
blouse: Three Feathers Vintage
shoes: Calvin Klein from Winners
Thursday, 13 January 2011
On the second half of our day trip the other day, we went to another picturesque Catalan town, Rupit. Apparently it always gets voted in the top five of cutest places in Catalonia. I thought both towns that we visited were just lovely, but even more stunning in my opinion was the surrounding area, which I didn't get good pictures of due to intense and really horrible carsickness (I had to get out on the way back and have a moment over a drain. Some old woman was watching me disapprovingly across the street obviously thinking I was drunk at 4 pm).
My photographer tells me I often pick unflattering photos of myself to post on the blog, which I'm not sure how to react to. Perhaps it's just that men and women have a very different idea of what constitutes a 'flattering' photo. Perhaps I'm sometimes as interested in the background and framing. Hmmm. All I know is that all these photos are way more flattering than what I've actually looked like for the past few days. I think I'm just short of having pneumonia at the moment. Yesterday was pretty interesting, as I struggled to finish my remaining essay while coughing up a lung and self-medicating with red wine (my father can speak at length about its healing properties) ; ) I'm so glad that's over, and I am soooo taking the weekend off from schoolwork!
Does anyone remember the story I told about hitting the log so it "shits presents?" In this post!
Monday, 10 January 2011
January is the Monday of months, and this is not only January, but indeed, Monday. I got back to England last night at 1 am, and while it's not bad to be back, I definitely had enough sunny days on my holiday to make me already feel a bit nostalgic.
These are from last week. My boyfriend and I escaped our various pressing tasks to go on a day trip into the gorgeous Catalan countryside, and visit a couple of picturesque villages. These pictures are from the first of them, Tavertet, population 158! It has all of three streets and the silence the day we were there was complete. I stood on the edge of the cliff, and the only sound for miles was the buzzing of a nearby fly. There was also a strange quality to the light, bright and fierce. Later we realized it had been the day of a partial solar eclipse.
Now, back to the Monday blues...
photos by Albert
dress: River Island (summer sales)
sweater: French Connection (from charity shop)
shoes: Timberland (ancient)
coat: second-hand Gloverall
Friday, 7 January 2011
So, a bit late, but here finally are some pictures of my New Years Dress! I think this dress will be very recognizable to many of you; it's pretty famous in blog land as The Clothes Horse Dress. I wondered for a bit if I would even wear the dress on the blog, seeing as it's so connected with someone else, but in the end I decided "whatever." It seems that most things I want that aren't vintage these days have some blog connection; I guess it's only to be expected since I don't tend to read magazines or scour runway shots or even go to stores very often. Anyway, I'm not sure how much I'll wear this dress on the blog, but I'll certainly wear it in real life. It's been to a few parties already and everyone comments on it and drools over it to a hilarious degree. : D
My "New Years' Resolution" this year is to spend less time on the internet. My internet behaviour reached an all time low this past year, and I really don't want to wake up in fifty years and realize I spent my twenties online. It doesn't help that these days everything I do for school requires me to use the computer and often the internet, but I'm determined to get out and away from it more. Hand in hand with that resolution is a "quality over quantity" resolution for the blog. How are everyone else's resolutions going? I never used to make any, but these days I just take it as a good excuse to formalize something I want to do anyway.
photos by Albert
dress: Neneee on Etsy
shoes: Fly London
rings: one from each grandmother