Saturday, 30 June 2012

Nell'Amore

So I spent the last two days helping out in my cousin's wedding dress shop, Nell'Amore Bridal Wear Consultancy, in Halstead (on the Suffolk/Essex border) in an attempt to gain some retail experience. It was so much fun as I got to photograph the bridesmaid dresses and sit in on some of the appointments. For some of the future brides it was an emotional experience when they finally found the dress so it was lucky we had some tissues at hand!
Here are a few sketches I did whilst helping out. The lighting in there is fantastic as the shop front is two huge windows that light up the front room, perfectly showcasing the stunning gowns. We had to go outside a number of times to clean the windows where the small children had pointed at the dresses on display, which apparently can be a way to rate how popular some of the dresses are!

 This one proved pretty popular judging from the smudgy handprints. I just loved the buttons that went all down the back of the dress. Such a beautiful detail.

This was one of my favourite dresses. Figure-hugging, and completely covered in lace with a long train, oh,it was stunning. So classic and elegant.

 This was a quick sketch of one of the rail of dresses. We had to check inside the dresses for make-up marks and the construction of these things are amazing! It's all corset boning and details to make sure that the weight of the dresses doesn't pull them down. And no one wants that on their wedding day.
The different designs could be ordered in in different colours, with varying length trains and necklines with halternecks and straps amongst the favoured strapless. The chandelier you can see at the top adds to the vintage d├ęcor of the shop. The front desk and cabinets are old tea-cabinets from when the building was a grocers and the floor is really beautiful dark wood. I loved the layout so much, it perfectly fitted the old town and the beautiful classic dresses.

 This was another dress that caught my eye. I didn't see it on, but it is how I imagined it would look on the mannequin. The range was so diverse, covering your classic princess fairytale dresses, to some shorter styles, or the slinky number below.
Not dissimilar to the white dress Kirsten Scott Thomas wears in Gosford Park, it just goes to show that you don't have to wear a meringue style dress for a wedding and that there are enough choices, even in a smaller boutique such as this one.

The tiaras were also so beautiful, and I have to say I did get a little emotional just trying them on... Just. So. Sparkly. Some of the bridesmaid dresses were gorgeous, I'm a little annoyed I didn't sketch them. But some would be suitable for the balls I have next semester, so I may start saving now...

I never realised how important customer service is in an industry such as Bridal Wear. When a woman came in for her appointment, Lauren had to be completely attentive, dealing with small children, tears and the occasional awkward dress size. She really knew exactly what styles suited the customers and seemed to find styles which would suit the occassion, whether it was a garden party reception or a large glitzy affair.
It was a great couple of days!

Hope you're all having a fabulous weekend!

MMM
x

Written for Nell'Amore Bridal Wear Consultancy.
http://www.nellamore-bridalwear.co.uk/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NellAmoreBridalWear

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Getting personal

I'm out the next few days and have been busy getting some proper paintings done so figured I'd post a few personal style drawings I've done recently and a few Jubilee nuggets I found lying around. I'm not the most organised of people so I constantly seem to be rediscovering drawings from months back!

 Here's me with my black skinnies, tweed jacket and checked shirt with a Kipling backpack I found in my house. I now wear it everywhere. I used to HATE rucksacks, but recently falling in love. On the hunt for a Peter Pilotto Kipling or a brown leather one. The tweed's just my go-to at the moment. I may have mentioned it before, this one is an old hacking jacket that skims my backside and just fits so perfectly. Teamed with artfully dishevelled hair. Obviously.
 Here is what I wore to the Masquerade Ball a few months back. I drew it at the time, but just forgot to post it.Oops. The dress was from Dorothy Perkins in the sale, layered and white I felt a little like I was in a Florence and the Machine video. I also wore my Topshop ankle boots that I've had for yonks, and a piece of sheer black fabric as a mask a la Kirsten Dunst in Marie Antionette. My hair was in an uber-messy French plait. It was a great night. Mostly because we got free popcorn.
 These were my favourite male and female outfits of the Jubilee. The female dress was skin tight with a low v-neck back and 3/4 length sleeves. The print was made of the classic faded Union Jack print, but was slightly abstracted which would have made it subtle enough to wear on a different occasion.
Surprise, surprise this gentleman had rolled up trousers and deck-shoes. What can I say, I just LOVE this look so much! He had a faded Union Jack silk scarf draped around his neck with a tweed jacket and a pale blue shirt. Atop his beautiful head was a tweed flat cap. Now I love me a good flat cap, I have several tweed varieties myself. I appreciated this look.


So yeah, that's it for now. What do you guys think of the new colour scheme? Also, was thinking of doing some more problem pages at some point. Thinking- How do you dress athletic shoulders?
My sister's returning from uni on the weekend and we're having a massive brainstorming session for a really exciting project I'm working on!

MMM
x

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Cuts like a razor...

In my post-before-last I mentioned I was off to see Razorlight with my sister. They were amazing, as in beyond all expectations. The beauty of watching bands perform in the middle of Thetford Forest is that you can get so darned close!

I drew a few sketches on the night as I am absolutely awful at utilising cameras. Then put a quick wash over on my return...

 The bassist was so insane. What with the cowboy boots, the baggy jeans, the headscarf and the cowboy hat to top off the pigtails and feathers. He chain-smoked throughout the concert and jumped around like a mad-man. Not quite your usual 'just-stare-moodily-at-the-audience' bass player, but it makes a beautiful and welcome change.

 Johnny Johnny Johnny Borrell. He writes the songs and sings them with so much heart. He also had the TIGHTEST jeans imaginable, which seemed to be kept together by electrical tape. I ain't complaining, the man is a genius.

I don't think the pianist is part of the original band as he sat out of the majority of the set. Mauve bowler hat, necktie, white t-shirt, blazer, baggy rolled-up jeans and deck-shoes, the guy looked F.A.B. as he sipped on red wine leaning nonchalantly against the scaffolding.

Menswear is far more interesting than womenswear. So here are a few sketches of my recent trip to Cambridge. DOUBLE WHAMMY.

 Here's a bit of double denim. It's EVERYWHERE. This guy's t-shirt was too low-cut for my liking, all tanned, waxed chest. He also had scary eyes. But I loved his 80s style denim bomber with dark skinnies. It worked.
 Ok ladies, consensus on short shorts for men. These were mid-thigh with a tan-leather belt and pink rolled up shirt. As we all know I appreciate a rolled-up sleeve, and this man had the biceps to match. And he knew it, strutting his way round town...

 This little fellow must have been about twelve and was swaggering round town wearing grey skinnies and loafers.On top he had a black cap under a red hoody. The sleeves were rolled up and the hood was up, the string was tied into a bow and the zip was up. Though I personally wouldn't ever consider this look the personal stylish twist was so amazing. Plus he was rearranging himself as he went past, me and my mate had a proper chuckle over this guy.

I did this drawing a while back when I was in Notts seeing a friend. We were in TKMaxx when we saw this guy with his brother and mother.He was probably about eight with rolled-up chinos, red striped deck shoes and a blue vest. The best bit was that his hair was in a side parting and slicked back. The brother was younger and similarly dressed and the mother was chic in the way that only Europeans can be. They strolled off jabbering away in Italian. It made my morning.


Hope you all had a fab day, I was in London visiting the sister and catching up with the exhibitions. But more on that later ;)

MMM
x

Monday, 25 June 2012

Past, Present, Future...

I've been off the radar the last couple of days with splitting headaches, 12 hour shifts and twenty mile bike rides. Life is hectic, give me back my 2pm lie-ins!

Mostly because I either haven't had a spare minute or I've been too ill to even move in the past week, I spent my first day of conscious relaxation scanning in sketches and drawing some new ones.

First off, I'm not a massive 'shoe-person.' If I had teeny-tiny delicate feet and not the bizarre ones I've been blessed with I would most definite stroll around in heels 24/7 strutting my way down highstreets and avoiding the cobbles. Yet my feet are uncommonly wide, but with high arches, so mostly only loose shoes fit and my height often prevents me from wearing heels on a day to day basis. Add in the fact that my bank balance is in a shocking state right now I'd much rather spend my money on beautiful coats and underwear than on shoes that will inevitably be hideously uncomfortable.

So here's a short past, present and future on my shoe-loves!

 
The past- These are the first heels I ever bought. Gold, 5 inch, suede Miss Sixty wedges. What more could a girl want? I wore them to death until the strap went. But I've kept them just in case I find an amazing tailor who is willing to fix them for me, or if I ever want to use them as a design. Just so hideously beautiful. I can't bare to throw them out!

 The present- My brown Doc Martens. When I was 15 I swapped my pink Caterpillar boots for my sister's knock-off brown leather versions. They sadly died on me last year and I cried when it happened, so I saved up my holiday working money to buy some Docs. And they haven't let me down. I literally wear them with everything. The green laces came from Ebay and have to get wrapped round the ankle as are too long. But they are so versatile and just so darn fantastic.









 The hopeful future- my younger sister Dorothy LOVES shoes and constantly comes home brandishing some book on vintage shoes or Manolo Blahnik. In one book I found an article on Gina shoes and the very next day found these gorgeous beauties in the charity shop for £4. Sadly they are also a size four which my huge feet will never fit in, but I say the future because hopefully one day I'll a) be able to afford such beautifully made shoes (they are completely leather and handmade) and b) that I'll be able to find something that both fits and is indescribably elegant.


So yeah, there's my short post. I'm in London tomorrow so will hopefully gather some blog fodder and I have so many more things to post and blogs to catch up on!


Hope you all have a simply fabulous week!


MMM
x


(I don't know why it's highighted, I can't seem to change it!)

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Backlog

So I was hunting round the cupboard that holds my art stuff along with a duck load of spiders and leaking wellies and found some old sketched I did a few years back. Thing is I can't remember when or why I doodled these up, but I thought I'd share a few. Minimal writing today, was walking round the local town for five hours desperately handing out CVs, such is the life of a student.

 This actually looks similar to something I bought last week. Bizarre... Also guessing from the similar styles of these, I'm going to say I was going through a designing phase.
 Ah a cape. I love capes. The only one I actually own is my mother's stagecoach cape. Apparently it was actually worn on a stagecoach in the 18th century. Well I never. I think the other just demonstrates my unending love for floaty evening gowns. I have several balls when I get back, may attempt to knock one up this summer...

There's another floaty one, with what looks like a playsuit underneath. Interesting. The second is most definitely a sketch of my Laura Ashley floral jumpsuit. I'd recognise those pockets anywhere!

So yeah, there you go. The crop of this bunch. I'm trying to get some paintings done so I can actually make some money this summer. As most of my work seems to end up as looking rather dark and violent I can't see there will be much of a market for it haha.

Here's a few examples...
This is an AS Level piece on Domestic Violence. It was in the Saatchi for a month a few years back. It was so amazing!
 Here is a portrait I did of a friend a few months back. It's not my usual style, other than the over zealous use of blue. I love drawing/painting people, but backgrounds and landscapes  bore my gnat-like attention span...


Hope you're having a fabulous week, I'm off to see Razorlight with my sister tomorrow! I am disturbingly excited, they are just fantastic.

MMM
x

Friday, 8 June 2012

Pieta

Purely because I've had a seven hour shift at work today in an open-air restaurant, mostly mopping the floor I do not feel like writing a long post. If you're in Britain atm, you'll understand that the weather is typically horrific and I'm now sitting by a very warm fire waiting for The Mother to cook stir-fry...

So here's a drawing I did the other night because I rediscovered a book I'd been given for Christmas and unlike most of my art books it was still at home. It's a huge book with photographs of all of Michelangelo's work. I love his stuff and the books perfect because I don't really like reading about art, I just love looking at pictures...

 So yeah... It's a pen-sketch of the head of the Virgin Mary in MA's Pieta.

That's all folks, I'm off to get me some stir-fry...

MMM
x

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Another kind of royalty.

So a few weeks back I went to Nottingham to see my mate Rachel and coincidentally this just happened to be when King Charles was performing. Now I love this man. Not only for his EPIC music, but also for his fantastic fashion sense. Very flouncy, very baroque, very AWESOME. Plus he has dreads. It makes me want to have dreads but I have been told that they a) smell and b) would look strange on me. But I believe them to be fabulous. And especially when on the head of this fabulous man.


These are Mississippi Isabel and Lady Percy. These aren't my fav songs by the man, but check out his other stuff such as Polar Bear or Coco Chitty. He's Fab.U.Lous.

So as per normal on my random little blogging escapades I made some sketches (yay...)
I just love it when a band has an image that seems to be natural to them as well as providing a united front. This band were so beautiful turned out in vintage costume that I couldn't not make notes.
Together with his dreads he was wearing a billowing white shirt, a vintage waistcoat, cropped black trousers and purple velvet slippers. I wish a little bit that he had rolled his trousers as I do love a trouser cuff. He seems quite a hairy man, what with the moustache, the chest hair and the knee length dreads. I WANT  THEM.
 I do not know what it is about bassists but they always get me a little hot under the collar. They always seem to play with the same moody stare and wear tops that show off perfectly sculpted biceps. And I appreciate that. And this guy didn't let me down. He wore a navy jacket over the ensemble most of the set, but then took it off to show his guns... He wore grey rolled up trousers, black velvet loafers, pale blue shirt with rolled up sleeves (so in love with this look) and a cravat. Plus perfectly trimmed facial hair and a side parting. The guy looked dapper...
The backing singer and occasional drummer of the band was this beautiful lady. Her afro was clipped to one side and wore minimal make-up. She had a high necked sheened top with a vintage velvet bolero on top that was held together by two gold chains. Under this she had a silver sheer coat and black cropped trousers. I can't remember what shoes she was wearing but she looked amazing.
The rest of the band were similarly attired but I saw these the most, so I figured I'd doodle them.

Please check out King Charles. He is so cool.

Here is his cover of Billy Joel's classic We Didn't Start the Fire.


Plus I saw The Mystery Machine on the road back from work today. It made the pissy weather so much better!

MMM
x

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Jubilee Concert

As I'm sure most of you are aware the Queen's Diamond Jubilee was held over this last weekend. I was in London for some of it, but didn't fancy it in the rain so the Father drove the family the two hours back home so we could watch the floats by the shoddy coverage that the BBC gave.
Monday saw the Diamond Jubilee Concert, organised by the 'rather dishy babe' Gary Barlow. (That's a quote from a friend there...)
Tom Jones and Shirley Bassey were in the line-up, so there was no way I was going to miss this. So I wrote my own little commentary and drew some quick sketches to keep myself entertained further... I started with Will.I.Am because,well, Robbie is Robbie. That is all.

Jubilee Commentary...
So Will.I.Am. Wow. Firstly- he's not British. Madness. Plus side, I do love his outfit. Very military, and I always appreciate a good military look. He may a decent performer, but my Lord is he out of tune...


I love me some Jessie J. Just her voice, her fantastic, fantastic voice. Loving the duet. And her solo is beautiful. That dress is also stunning. Anyone know the designer? It's like a crazy psychedelic Union Jack...

JLS? Seriously?! Boring... Plus that random green sports jacket one of them is wearing is not appreciated. And I blinked and missed the trademark back flip. This saddens me. Plus side- here's a drawing of the slightly better dressed one...
Now Mr Barlow is one sexy man (I forgot to do a drawing...) but I can't stand Cheryl- she's dropping the Cole now, don't you know... The dress is a little awesome, but I don't think it really suits her. But O.M.G. is she out of tune. If you get the chance to sing with the beautiful Mr Barlow please make sure you're hitting the right notes.

Cliff Richard. Now I'm loving the tunes and the outfit. Golden Oldie my friend. Sadly the colour doesn't really do you any favours, but I'm loving the shoes. Sparkley Converse- I want me some.

Lang-Lang. Now I'm a little in awe. Your fingers shouldn't be able to move that fast. Literally in awe.

Apparently the opera man, Alfie Boe, was awesome. I appreciate Elvis as much as the next girl. I decided to wash my hair here. It now smells like Moroccan Oil courtesy of some fancy stuff I found in the cupboard...

The washing ate into the Jools and Ruby action. Oops.

Grace Jones you are indeed an amazing woman. At 64 she quite potentially has the best legs I've ever seen. And she did the hula hoop thing the entire time she was singing. Major envy atm...

Now Ed Sheeran is a little close to my heart as he's a local boy. And now he's famous. It's madness. I'm done with this song though. But well done on swapping the t-shirt for the shirt. I think Harry must like him. But Harry's about twenty times hotter...

Annie Lennox is fabulous. And I wish I had wings. Plus her quitarist- just a little sexy I have to say, rocking out in all white. Good on you girl.

ROLF- Ducking love that man. And his shirt.

I love Renee Fleming's dress. And her singing. And that her dad wrote James Bond. And that Daniel Craig played Mr Bond. I appreciate this. (AMENDMENT- I've since been told she is in fact not related to Ian Fleming.Bloody BBC misleading me like that...)

Tom Jones. I love that his voice hasn't changed. I've seen him live a few times. The man is a god. See Cheryl- that's how it's done.

Now Mr Jones is a tough act to follow. Robbie rose to the challenge. And proved that he can actually sing, despite people for years saying he is just a showman. I would. Without question.

I was promised that the gorgeous Prince Harry would be playing the tambourine in the Jubilee song. I feel that that would have made this awesome performance even better.

Shirley shirley shirley. She's still got it! It must be something about the Welsh. She and Mr Jones are still on top form.

I would not want to come on after Dame Bassey. But Kylie did. I'm not fan. And her performance won't change that. Plus I think she looks like an S&M enthusiast.

Alfie Boe and Renee Fleming- so beautiful. I may have welled up a little... Plus the lighting up of the Palace was fantasmic. Kinda wanted Will and Kate to start singing on the other side.

Elton John wore an amazing jacket. It was pink and sparkling. I enjoyed it. His voice is going a little, but his piano skills? Wow.

Stevie Wonder is a bit of a random addition. But he sang Superstition. You can't really beat that.

O.M.G.- Madness on Buckingham Palace. Fan-bloody-tastic. And the projection onto the Palace was exceptional. So much love for these guys right now.

I'm not a Beatles fan. I'm just going to say that now. And Paul was defo below par. Please bring back Tom. Or Robbie. Or just Harry. To my bed. And what's with all the pyrotechnics? Is it to distract me from the fact that my ears are bleeding in pain?
That said the dancing celebs and Tom and Cliff sharing a cheeky wee hug makes me happy.

May have wept a little at the end there- DAMN YOU HORMONES.




So yeah... that was my little analysis. I love that the comments get slightly shorter. I miss Robbie already. I may go Youtube him constantly for the next hour or so...


MMM
x




Monday, 4 June 2012

Double Denim

Yes, as the post title would suggest I committed one of the sartorial cardinal sins. I wore double denim. And not even in the safety of my own home. I wore this to travel down the country back home so people down the length of the country would have seen this monstrosity. Thing is it was rather fun...

So there it is. A River Island dark denim jacket, pale blue jeans from H&M, my White Lies t-shirt and me ol' Docs. I felt very continental. But in a disturbingly awesome way. I may have to rock this look out again sometime...

 This outfit was from a Childhood themed social I organised with a friend for the St Andrews Beach Korfball tournament. Because I'd packed everything up for the epic trip home I barely had anything to dress in. So I went for a parka that I've had for centuries. It looks a little like a Fruit Pastille ice lolly, but I love it just a little bit. The whole outfit is the parka, a Peacocks' mens t-shirt with a Union Jack (appropriate for this weekend non?) and my standard hot pants and Docs. As I've said before I love to dance so going out often means a loose t-shirt or vest top, hotpants and Docs. So much movement!
This is not an outfit I've actually worn out yet. But it's a planned one. I got these trousers from Topman a few months back for £1. Super thick cotton in sky blue with a thick white stripe they're too long even for me. Because they are loose and so comfortable I really want to wear them out, but, due to the colour, they are obviously pjs. SO here is an idea of how I could possibly style them for outside wear. It's a loose camel vest-top and a vintage 1940s white bed jacket. Any ideas?

Just off to watch the Diamond Jubilee Concert, and Prince Harry...


MMM
x

Friday, 1 June 2012

MIA

Well I have done SHOCKINGLY at keeping track of this blog I see. I don't really have an excuse, but packing up my shit hole of a room and organising a tournament and two socials involving 90+ people may just make it. So I'm finally home in splendid Suffolk. It's flat and I like it. Annoyingly we had amazing weather for the last week in Sandy Andy and now it's just grey and dismal down here. Plus side, going to the Epsom Derby tomorrow so I ain't complaining.

The following drawings are of some of the blogs that I read. The women are awesome, fabulous and inspiring (and not only in the sartorial sense.)

These aren't the only blogs I read, but they are the ones I check most regularly because their writing styles are just as fun as their beautiful photos!

 Misfits Vintage- Sarah from Misfits Vintage has a figure made for vintage fashion and the glossiest hair I've ever seen. She's also got a killer sense in music and uses the kind of language I wish I could get away with more often. Plus she can wear bright red and bright yellow. I'm jealous.
 Cupcake's Clothes- I only recently discovered Georgina of Cupcake's Clothes whilst researching fatshion. I love that fatshionistas have so much flamboyance and attitude despite the stigma that today's culture places on them. I'm going to do another post on fatshion when I have the time... So back to Georgina- I love her sweet, pastel style. It's bang on trend and her pink hair is to die for! I've been wanting to dye my hair this for ages, or failing that lilac. But Georgina rocks it. And that's all.

 Pull Your Sox Up- Desiree from Pull Your Sox Up is amazing. Not only are her charity shop (or op-shop) skills seemingly unparelled, but her ebay skills are in another world. I wish I could find vintage circus costumes or peach-coloured pajamas and then wear them with galaxy-adorned leggings. The woman is a fashion icon in clashing prints and fabulous headpieces. Oh and she has some of the best pins I've ever seen!


Vintage Vixen- This is quite an old outfit from the lovely Vix. She has an enviable figure and a wardrobe to match. She manages to make anything look amazing be it silver leather shorts, green flared trousers or a sequined crop top. Her photos from Goa are always stunning and those Trechnikoff paintings? So beautiful!



So yes, there are a few of the bloggers that I read the most and have some of the most covetous style out there. Forget Vogue, these women are fashion-forward and fashion-fierce!

I promise I'll get back on track asap...


Have a fabulous Jubilee weekend!

MMM
x