Clothes Swapping Party

I am very excited to tell you about the Clothes Swapping Party I hosted last Saturday. I ended up with a few lovely new items and shared some laughs and prosecco with great friends.

Hosting such a party is easy to do and inexpensive. Here is a list of reasons why having a Clothes Swapping event is such a fantastic idea:

 

1) You get new clothes for free

We’ve all done it, bought that skirt or that dress that looked amazing on the mannequin but not so amazing on us. It’s natural, we all have different body shapes, while mannequins - is safe to say – all look exactly the same. Knowing and loving your body shape will stop you from making future purchasing mistakes, but in the meantime, you can give those unsuitable (yet absolutely gorgeous!) items to some of your lovely friends who can wear them better.

 

 

2) You get rid of clothes you no longer wear, need, like etc.

I highly advise you to host a clothes swapping event particularly after you’ve had a wardrobe assessment / overhaul. So instead of fretting over when to take all those bags of clothes to the charity shop (I for one struggle, as I don’t have a car and the only charity shop situated at walking distance from my house is currently closed), just have some friends over and give them away. You’ll be left with a lot less bags of clothes to cull.

 

 

3) It’s a great occasion to bring friends together

We all do it, promise to get together an life gets in the way. So sometimes it’s best to add an extra incentive for bringing friends together and hanging out. We’ve spent the first hour or so catching up on the latest, nibbling and eating prosecco and them started rummaging through each other’s clothes. It was the best fun we’ve had in ages!

 

4) Because we like clothes!

I know it’s silly, but we’re girls and we like clothes. Scattered all over the living room, bags, shoes, hats, jewellery, anything you can think of. I managed to even fall back in love with some of my own clothes, which I guess it’s a good thing.

 

 

5) Because your clothes go to people you love :)

As much as I like clothes, I hate waste. So if I find myself in the situation of having too many similar items, as much as I love them, I’ll try to limit myself to the minimum and to give away the excess. It makes me happy knowing that clothes I really liked (like the black Diesel boots below!) go to someone I also really care about. It just makes me smile.

 

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Making cool sounds with attitude and style

   Interview with DJ Janette Slack

 

Hong Kong born Eurasian, DJ Janette Slack has been making music in London since 2003. She has now launched her own label Slack Trax and some really cool tunes she’s been crafting lately. As you’d expect, this is one lady with attitude. Her DJ-ing outfits are a mix of punk, hip hop, manga, latex and heavy make-up. Just before launching her label, I caught up with her to find out more about the East and West mix lady DJ who’s been jamming up the nights on the London club scene.

 

Tell us about your music, what makes it unique, what makes it different?

I’m not musically trained so it takes me a long time to write tracks. The only musical instrument I learnt how to play was drums for about a year. So I don’t know how to play any instrument at an amazing level but only enough so I can lay down ideas which make sound engineering and programming come in handy as you can programme it all and as long as it sounds clear and crisp then you don’t really need a band to rely on. I really enjoy programming drums and because I come from a more of a rock music background (my dad’s influence) I enjoy recording real bass guitars and real guitars. My music is a hybrid between rock and electronic music. I’m really inspired by bands like Hybrid, Nine Inch Nails, Dave Grohl from Foo Fighters, Underworld, Orbital, The Prodigy, Chemical Brothers, Basement Jaxx, all these amazing artists which are their own thing. You can hear they’ve got inspiration from something else and they’ve turned it into their own thing using electronica. So I collaborate sometimes with vocalists, it can be funk vocalists, a rapper, a singer, male or female, and it’s really nice to see what interesting layers they bring on top of my music.

 

 

What kind of clubs have you normally performed at, is there a particular scene you tend to stick to?

I’ve been kind of drifting, between all the scenes. When I first moved to London, because my passion was in break beat, I’ve played at various clubs and bars ranging from gay, straight and fetish. About 6 years ago I got my first warm up set at Torture Garden. I’ve now been a resident there for 6 years and it’s definitely not boring.

 

 

Have you got a signature look when you’re performing?

It took me a long time to find the image that was right for me. You just got to believe in whatever it is what you you’re wearing. But as long as you don’t get lazy and stay on top of your craft it doesn’t really matter what you wear. I generally tend to wear what I feel like. As a woman there are days when you want to wear trousers and days when you want to wear tights. It’s trying to keep a balance, dressing with a bit of attitude. And if there’s a theme like Halloween, hen dos etc… it helps you do your thinking about what clothes you’re going to wear. You end up wearing something you never thought of wearing before and the night gives you the option to. I am also becoming more open to things such as wearing body paint etc.  Sometimes I want to stand out and sometimes I don’t.

 

 

You’ve launched you own label. Tell us all about it.

I’ve launched my own label Slack Trax last year and it’s got its first release on 29th Oct with a track called ‘Girl in Black’. It’s the most ‘pop’ish, commercial track I’ve ever done. All my tracks have always been moody. The next single ‘You Can’t Stop This’ was released on the 4th of Dec. I’ve collaborated with Kickflip on that one and it’s more honest to what I play at Torture Garden and what I’m writing right now. It’s got guitars in it, real drums, vocals from Javone Prince (from Channel 4’s Phoneshop) and some really cool noises that make sense.

My album ‘Torture Garden Session’ got released in late January/ early February.  I have limited edition CDs that you can order on www.janetteslack.com . The album is available on all the digital shops such as iTunes, Trackitdown, Beatport, Juno, Amazon etc…. So far the label it’s been getting really good response. DJMag have shown lots of support, Mixmag have given Slack Trax 2 ‘Tune of the Month’ titles, and I just got interviewed by Time Magazine because of setting up the label.

 

What’s next?

I just want to keep writing and I just want to get better at everything I’m doing. One of the styles I play is progressive and electro and break beat and there’s a slower tempo called nu funk and glitch hop which is faster than hip hop but slower than electro and it’s a really sexy pace, there’s cool vocals, it really hits the spot for me. And that’s something I really want to explore more.

 

 

 

You can listen to some of Janette’s tracks here!

 

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Less is always more: demure bridal gowns

The tradition of a white wedding is commonly credited to Queen Victoria’s choice to wear a white wedding dress at her wedding to Prince Albert in 1840.

Regardless of whether that was Queen’s Victoria’s intention or not, the white wedding dress and the veil have traditionally been associated with modesty and purity. However, bridal gowns of modern era have somewhat lost their original meaning and have evolved more towards glamour and sex-appeal than innocence.

But why do nowadays brides seem to have all been to the same wedding shop, specialising is corsets and crinolines? It feels like weddings are crying out for a bit more imagination. And a bit more fabric. Perhaps some sleeves? There’s nothing wrong with hiding under lace, less is always more.

So let’s take a look at these stunning and yet less revealing wedding dresses for the demure brides to be and find some inspiration for  the upcoming white weddings of 2013.

 

Amsale

 

Carolina Herrera

 

Claire Pettibone

 

Marchesa

 

Claire Pettibone

 

Monique Lhuillier

 

Monique Lhuillier

 

Reem Acra

 

Reem Acra

 

 

US Vogue Shoot

 

All images via Pinterest

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Look like a princess, feel like a star

 

Most of today’s wedding dresses can be quite a bore. Whether it be a strapless mermaid dress or a simple A-Line number (again, strapless), many bridal gowns are predictable and monotonous. Even lack a breath-taking quality. Perhaps this is due to an overkill in replicating modern celebrity bridal trends, or brides just following along with what’s in fashion. For the sophisticated, yet bold bride, however, there are a ridiculous amount of vintage-inspired dresses that conjure up the days of old-school celebrity and royal weddings gowns are becoming popular, as chic brides are looking for exclusive, unorthodox dresses.

Today’s fashion-focused women desire gowns fit for Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, Natalie Wood, and Vivian Leigh. These brides desire stylish, uncommon twists on popular throw backs from the 40′s up to the 70′s. As any modish girl knows, “what comes around, goes around” is a mantra within the fashion industry, so gowns that are vintage-influenced or true antiques are what hip brides crave.

Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton isn’t the first royal bride to capture the media spotlight as she graced Westminster Abbey. Although her stunning gown, designed by Alexander McQueen fashion house’s creative director Sarah Burton, was classy and magnificent, several royal brides before her were adorned in enchanting dresses. Princess Diana’s over-the-top,  flowing gown was a hit with women around the world during the 80′s.

 

 

But many fashionable brides-to-be seek styles from an even older royal generation. Similar to other fashion and beauty trends, celebrities from decades ago are being invoked when it comes to bridal attire. American actress turned Princess of Monaco, Grace Kelly, will forever be a fashion icon; however, her elegant, refined gown has become an inspiring template for delicate, tasteful wedding dress designs. In 1978, Grace Kelly’s daughter also became a fashion icon in the bridal world when she embraced the spirit of the era and wore a charming, lacy dress during her first wedding. Much like Ms. Kelly, America’s first lady Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onasis made a lasting impression when she walked down the aisle in 1953 wearing an Anne Lowe ball gown fit for a princess.

 

 

No other time period was as glam and alluring as old school Hollywood. Actresses like Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, and Natalie Wood were chic trendsetters, so, naturally, these famous ladies’ wedding gowns; whether they be dresses worn during their actual marriage ceremonies or just on the silver screen; are popular with vintage loving brides. Simple, yet lovely tea length dresses are ideal for the casual, dainty bride. These 50′s style dresses also make superb bridesmaids’ attire and are available at retailers like Marks and Spencer. Brides-to-be who need something a bit more formal can look to the runways of Paris, London, and New York for awe-inducing, traditional gowns. No matter what vintage style you go with on your big day, you’re sure to look like a bride befitting royalty or a classic Hollywood star.

 

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The essential holiday wardrobe

I know we’re in the middle of the winter and we should probably be talking about scarfs and mittens, but this time of the year is also popular for sunny getaways. So perhaps talking about an essential holiday wardrobe is not too far fetched.

I’ve just come back from a 3 weeks holiday in Vietnam and travelled a bit up and down the country with a heavy backpack mainly full of toiletries and a fair amount of clothes. I am a practical person and I hate carrying around unnecessary things but I also think one can never be too chic even when travelling in hot exotic countries, so I packed for evey eventuality. However, experiencing a few such trips in my life, I realised that you only really need a few essential items regardless of how long you’re going away for, items which I will detail below. If you think you will need more than this, don’t forget that most countries these days offer laundry services so refreshing your travellinng wardrobe should not be a problem. Travelling light is practical and eco-friendly. Plus, it leaves that little bit of extra room in your luaggage for those amazing finds you’ll want to bring back home.

The oversized white shirt

Important because it will keep you cool when it’s hot, it will keep you warm if it’s chilly, it will protect you from mosquitoes and it will look good on you no matter what (especially against that sun kissed skin).

 

 

The denim shorts

I’d say go for boyfriend style of oversized, you won’t want to offend any local eyes by showing too much of your womanly bottom. Unless you’re in Brazil, which is fine!

 

 

 

 

The long skirt

Important for the same reasons as the oversized white shirt, for visiting temples and holy places and for making you look sexy and mysterious.

 

 

 

 

 

The oversized T-shirts

Make sure you pack a couple of plain grey or black ones and a few printed ones. Not more than 5 or 6. They go with the denim shorts and the long skirts.

 

 

The Havaianas

We all know why!

 

 

The flat sandals

They must be a) comfortable (think city visits), b) stylish (think dinners and nights out)

 

 

 

The earrings

Earrings are the essential holiday accessories. They don’t feel sweaty against your skin like necklaces and bangles, and they will flatter you whether your hair is up or down.

 

 

 

The hats

Festival style straw hats or fabric ones which you can fold and carry around. Any other kind will take up too much space and attention.

 

 

 

 The scarfs

As essential as your underwear. They will protect you against sun, wind, rain, too much attention. Perfect for covering shoulders during temple visits and for looking stylish and put together!

 

 

And other than suncream and mineral powder don’t think you’ll need anything else. Harem pants and jumpsuits are ok too, but only as extras. You’ll be able to mix and match at large with the items above, still looking like the girls from Sex and The City. Ok, maybe not quite like them! But close enough!…

 

All images via Pinterest.

 

 

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