Spin me a story: Tim Walker

My most treasured present this year came in the form of a very large book. Ok, so it's not Domesday-big, but it's certainly a tome if ever I saw one.

Tim Walker is both mine and Vogue's favourite photographer. You will have seen one of his many famous photographs at some point during the last few years- his Karen Elson and Lily Cole hyper-surreal shoots are a firm favourite in blogger-dom.

I knew there had to be something else though, something behind those portraits of macaroon-hued horses, life-size doll houses with their own model dolls and fairy tales tipped on their heads. You don't start out doing some of the most elaborate shoots for the worlds biggest fashion magazine and using some of the most complex props ever created without an education, a past.
This book is beautiful and, in about five languages or so, explains many of the questions I had. So many of his early photographs aren't fashion at all. Or maybe they are, but just not like we know it.

I never really fell for the 'coffee-table' book phenomenon, I find it strange and alien to think that people buy books with pretty pictures as they would an ornament like a vase or a porcelain animal. I don't even have a coffee table for goodness sake. But, I do have a dressing table. With a perfectly sized space for a very large book.

You'll marry a music man

If my NY-California road-trip in September doesn't resemble at least part of this film, I won't be home until it does. Either with or without the naked board-game high-jinx.

I made a Spotify playlist to accompany this post, listen with a candle burning and you will see your entire future.

Vintage Dresses

Hope everyone is recovered from the festivities! I'm quite sad it's all over and I'm missing my Edward quite alot so I'm trying to distract myself with family visiting today. My mum has cooked our tradtitional Christmas ham which I gorge myself on every year, I cannot wait!

I've been meaning to show these dresses for a couple of months now and have just never found the time or the right place to photograph them. I packed them in my suitcase to wear over the holidays and my parents snow covered garden seemed perfect to hang them up in and take a few snaps.

Both were from Snooper's Paradise in Brighton. I thought I wasn't going to find anything after having a thorough rummage but in another, more hidden away, rail I found both of these just waiting for me. Both my size, and both only £22 each.
The beautiful gem-hued dress is pure silk and in absolutely perfect condition. The black lace 1960's shift is a little damaged but is still wearable, with a nipped-in waist and double-v neckline.

A little tip if you go to big antiques markets or vintage shops and end-up buying more than one item is to ask for a traders discount, usually only 10% but worth it if you spend over £40 or so.

In other news, I re-dyed my hair a couple of days ago and am so happy with the results. A much brighter, deeper red which I'm hoping won't fade as fast this time! I got some great tips on prolonging the colour from the beautiful Messy Carla's brilliant post here, a must for faux-redheads everywhere.

Red Christmas

I know people might think it mad to be blogging on the big day but theres fifteen minutes until dinner and I've already drunk two bellini's and eaten lots of Lindt chocolate.

I just wanted to say a huge, heartfelt thank you to all of you who've read my ramblings over the past year. Have wonderful day with family and friends, receive something pretty, watch Doctor Who, drink cocktails, nap and eat lots of food.

Shall we Coco?

This is Coco Fennell. Firstly, let's state the obvious- yes, she is absolutely gorgeous, yes, she is a model and yes, she is the daughter of jewellery maestro Theo Fennell.

What she also is, is a designer of extremely pretty dresses designed and sewn out of her East London pad and sold on her website, Coco Fennell. I love people with unexpected talents. Her prints are beautiful, her cuts look flattering and her prices, for something handmade, are reasonable.

When I emailed her a few questions a couple of weeks back she replied straight back and was funny, modest and actually, someone I could imagine having a few drinks with.

Could you tell us a little about how you started the company/brand? As someone who would love to work for myself one day do you have any tips for starting out on your own?
I started this brand early this year I really just wanted to make fun frocks that were not too expensive and an alternative to the high street. My tip would be to start a business online the start up costs are low and so you are not taking too much of a risk if it doesn't work out (hoping it will!)

What inspires your designs? A lot of them are vintage with a twist, are there any particular designers or era's that inspire you?
I love the dresses of the 60's and 70's fun, colourful with a sense of humour and fantastic shapes.

Where do you source your materials? The patterns and prints are beautiful!
Ah thanks! I source some of the materials in the UK and India and others I have had done by an lovely illustrator. I would love to do many more prints in the future!

As a blogger yourself, what blogs would recommend? Any that you are loving at the minute

What's next for Coco Fennell? Do you have any big plans or dreams of what you'd like to do with your designs?
If anyone, anywhere in the world thinks I am doing a good job or like my designs then I am happy. My plan is to keep on designing new things and hopefully I can just keep the label going...can't have a grander plan than that!

Nope, no grander Coco!

Check out her wonderful dresses (and the occasional studded shoulderpad)

Take 10 Project: The Newbie

You may remember me waffling on a little while ago about being thrilled to have been chosen to be one of the new Take 10 bloggers. Well this is it, my first challenge and what a challenge it was.

If you aren't familiar with the Take 10 project, it's very simple. 10 girls are tasked with styling an item of clothing generously donated to each of us by a big brand sponsor. Like all of those essays we did at school, the idea is to compare and contrast. A fantastic chance for each of us to show our individuality and a great opportunity for you to get some ideas on styling up similar items of clothing.

For this, my first mission as a newbie Take 10 girl, we were lucky enough to score Wildfox as our new sponsor. To be perfectly honest, all that used to spring to mind when I heard someone mention Wildfox were WAG's but looking on the Press section of their site, it seems I was sorely mistaken. You're more likely to see Katy Perry or the lovely Liv Tyler out and about in one of their tee's.

We were all sent the Oversized V-Neck tee, which- when I opened the package- totally threw me. It's quite a masculine t-shirt and I am a rounded girl-shape with pretty large boobs so I knew I needed to try and make it a bit more feminine.

I paired it with a couple of long necklaces to draw attention towards my waist and tucked it in to a velvet a-line skirt with black tights and my Bertie wedge boots. I took a little bit of inspiration from the latest
Wildfox lookbook- a mix of mid-90's grunge and witchery a la The Craft. The leopard-print head scarf was a little last minute addition and if I was going out I'd throw a leather jacket over this and be done. How do you think I did? I'm not much of a t-shirt girl usually so any tips would be appreciated!

These are a few of my favourite shots from their latest lookbook:

I love what the other girls have done too, check out how they've styled it-
Jen's bang-on-trend leather pencil skirt
Jazzabelle's jeans and knits
Sabine's cosy cardy and arm-warmers
Vicki and Sherin's shorts
Paula's perfect topknot
Sarah's sequinned skirt
Adele's casual Converse look and MJ's amazing socks & sandals combo.