Saturday, 18 April 2015

The Socio-Politics of External House Decoration

Don't worry...
It's not the tome it might, could, or should be.

If you like decor and / or original writing 
then I have the blog for you.
I just read another marvelous post from the most articulate and amusing 
Blue at The Blue Remembered Hills.

The timing of the article was so pertinent as I had just finished reading this article about a house painted in red and white stripes in one of the poshest areas if not the poshest area of London. 

"Circus house" in Kensington Via
This house has been in the headlines from 
broadsheets, local gazettes to redtops 
( links on all three if you wish to read further ) 
because it touches on 
British obsessions of home ownership, class, money and taste.

The house is worth an estimated £15 million pounds and neighbours think she painted it like this as revenge for the street for objecting to basement and redevelopment applications.

Interestingly we had a situation on our street last year.
We have a house on my street where the newest just moved in owner occupant states she is an artist. 
I normally love artists - if they actually are artists. 
Apart from various behavior patterns that I shan't bore you with, she put fake green astroturf grass in front of her house.
( The street is a cobbled mews and there is a few feet in front of the house in which most people put plants and chairs - 
she chose astroturf as a base.)

A few of the neighbours raised the literal and proverbial eyebrow. Fake flowers indoors is pushing limits at the best of time but fake grass outside!
So one neighbour took action and found a clause pertaining to our council with the help of a local planning officer that stated any display on the exterior of the house that is not considered in good taste must be removed.  ( I wanted to ask him more about this but he's not around this weekend.)
He got a local councillor in our borough to mention this to the "artist" and luckily she got rid of the eyesore without it having to escalate into an unnecessary squabble.

But in the case of this red and white striped home, the owner is being insistent and the matter has become litigious.

But it is also very telling about the U.K. psyche that the Telegraph has done a front page article about the personality and biography on the lady who has done this deed.  There have not been such lateral attacks and exposes on some convicted criminals! 

The article is also ranking as the most popular link today.
I am sure this story will be followed and the nation will be updated on any change in the facade or planning approvals and rejections.

I suppose when such large sums of money are at stake that a gentle word and lending out cups of sugar or a pint of milk doesn't do the trick.  All I can suggest is bake a batch of gluten and wheat free cookies ( one can't be too safe these days) or have a street party to maintain and foster good neighbor relations!  
You don't want to be on the front page...

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Miscellaenous moments April 2015

How have you all been?

It's well and truly a new season and I feel change in the air.
Must be the change in weather and that lunar eclipse.
Fresh start.

I really missed Millie while I was away.
We hung out yesterday and it felt like I was on holiday.

Because the opening of the sliding bi-fold doors means 24 degree weather
which adjusted for London in April is a scorcher.
Even my Greek husband asked for some sunscreen.

It's good to come back home to great weather.

Spring bloom time in London is rather underrated.

There are blossoms everywhere and London soil handles magnolia trees better
than some of the home counties.
But I have to be careful about my freckles so took some time out to go to the auction house to check out some bargains.

I put in a failed bid for this games table that looked like fun.
It was quite damaged but it was from Fortnum and Mason's 100 years ago so some decorator or store dealer must have snapped it up.
But it's things like this why I love an auction house.

Sorry Tabitha but I will admit to flipping this over a few times when I got this as change in a store.
The only time we all use the term "legal tender" is in this instance.

My trip to Korea was lovely - I get so spoiled with care and food.
This item below is the first stage of miso!

Basically it's like a blue cheese.
It's still drying and has a bit more to go until it ripens.

Korean appliances are hilarious.
I have a relative that has crystals and flowers on their fridge.
This was a popular model because it has a drinks only opening  ( center right ) to save energy.

More kitchen paraphernalia are these oil blotters for your food.

We went to Jeonju in the southwest of Korea which is a historic village and saw this traditional door that was souped up with a modern pincode lock.

It was a pivotal city that was a fort in the 1300's.

We went there because it has one of the few remaining portraits of one of my mother's ancestors.
He's the guy who started the Jeonju Lee clan which was named when he moved south to this city.
Apparently he was a powerful warrior which explains my mother's temperament! ;P

This was his horse with which he won battles.
It was like one of those Who do you think you are trips.

Don't tell my family but my highlight was eating bibimbap which was invented there.

Koreans take botany just as seriously as the Japanese but political turmoil and wars ruined their gardens.  In the last century people stopped gardening so much which makes me realize that the saying the planting a garden means you have hope.
So it's a treat to see color and flowers of any kind.
It means Korea has settled from the last 100 years.

I finally visited Zaha Hadid's building in Seoul.
They preserved a historic site from a few thousand years back and juxtaposed so well with the lines created randomly by technology that Zaha uses.

Walking around the building was so interesting because it looked so different from every angle.

It happened to be fashion week and this blogger was hilarious and so hungry for press because I kept bumping into him again and again as I was walking around the building myself!

Here's my uncle and dog walking along the pines in a completely different atmosphere.
I love the light from the sunsets in Seoul.

I wish my family lived closer but then again it gives me an excuse to get out of London!

Muriel from the French Yummy Mummy nominated me for the Sisterhood bloggers.
I didn't really follow the rules because it's a wonder I got this post out at all but I thank her!

Stay well xx

Friday, 6 March 2015

Different Ways of Accessorising a Blouse / Silk Top

There are signs that you are getting older not by birthdays but by fashion trends.

I thought blouses were very 1980's Sloane or the token 1980's corporate American female executive.  Alas like all things the blouse is reclaiming its place into the wardrobe.

Odd because I used to use the word "blousy" but in a less than positive way and yet now this article of clothing has been my most relied on since I purchased it late last year.

Most of you know I don't do many outfit posts so when
I do, it usually means that it has been a real stalwart.

This is the blouse.
Round neck with pleats on the neckline with a discreet opening with
an invisible reverse loop button at the front center.
It can also be worn as a V neck blouse without the button done.

The only other discerning feature is that the sleeves can be worn loose or tapered as there is a button.

I like brooches but all the brooches I have are either gifts or ones I took from my mother's stash.
This little lion cub was given to me when I was 25 and has been waiting patiently for me to use it. 

I wore it the day I got it and has been in the dark ever since.
I find brooches are one of the most difficult accessories to wear apart from hats.
It has to be worn with confidence because any doubt or shirking will outshine the accessory itself.
I think it works rather well as a feature button as the rest of the blouse is very simple.

The other brooch I have is this one I borrowed from my mother and I also use it as a feature button.

Coral is not a color that I wear or can wear but this black blouse serves as a platform where I borrow some color from the brooch and the blouse can sport a different mood.

Because of the lack of a defined cuff and the discreet button that tapers the end of the sleeve,
the blouse works well with chunky bracelets and cuffs.
I normally find the Collier de Chien hard to wear.

The CDC as it is commonly referred to while popular is hard to handle properly.
It is a statement piece so if not careful it can overpower the wearer.

But I finally found a blouse that I feel I can wear the bracelet without feeling overwhelmed by it.
I find they go well with either bare skin or a cuff less top otherwise it doesn't sit properly.
It's an item that either punctuates an outfit or can make the wearer look like a fashion victim.
I find this blouse even with its simplicity can see eye to eye with it.

I also find it comfortable and easy to wear with my red CDC.

I love cuff bracelets and am so happy that I can wear them with ease.

So much so that I wanted to order another blouse in a different color but it has since sold out...

Alas, no silk blouse is perfect.
It can hold its own with accessories that are normally hard to handle.
But due to its neckline and pleats it can't accommodate other popular accents like this pearl necklace.

Pearl necklaces have to have the right fall and the perfect length which depends on so many things.
One's neck, the size of pearls and of course in this case the marriage of neckline and necklace.

I thought any bracelet would just be offset by the blouse but for a lunch I tried an enamel bracelet and it just didn't do either the blouse or accessory any favours.

I have this sautoir that I enjoy looking at - in my closet.
Looking at because it is hard to wear sautoirs when one is above a B cup.
It really is meant for flat chested women.
It looks like this for one minute after two minutes of careful choreography until I move.

Then it dips and I end up fiddling with it.

I have tried to make it work by triple wrapping it but then once again there was the neckline issue.
Back to the box for you my dear.

A scarf was the first automatic reflex but I felt I was under swathes of fabric.

I thought a silk jersey scarf might be better because the fall is completely different to a classic twill but it lacked form and the fabrics just seemed to mold into each other.

But overall this blouse has gotten much use and has become my go to item.

It has since sold out but I bought it from my newly dependable brand called Winser London 
( link on name.)

I have found this so useful I am considering this pink blouse for the spring/summer.
Via Winserlondon
 I'm thinking the light pink and think this might be a better base for silk and silk jersey scarves.
I hope you find an item of clothing that serves as a base for all the accessories lurking and lonely in your jewelry boxes!

P.S. I am off to Korea this weekend for a break so will be taking a small blog break and will be back in early April but I might be on instagram if my jetlag isn't too bad.
Stay safe and well and see you in April x