Saturday, 29 November 2014

world peace is none of your business


Last year, in January, when my intense love affair with The Smiths began, I doubted I'd ever get to see Morrissey live, but back then it was one of my most important life goals. Fifteen year old me would be spending today screaming and crying with excitement/emotions, but, although I'm excited, I've passed the stage where I write journal entries such as this:

I really don't know what to do. The Smiths have changed my life. Morrissey's words are beautiful and everything all goes so well. I'm so obsessed. All I could think about all day at school was listening to The Smiths as soon as I got home and I was constantly singing their songs under my breath. I just lay on my bed with all the lights out except my lava lamp and listened to them with my phone turned up as loud as possible with my earphones in, listening to "There Is A Light That Never Goes Out" over and over and over.

It's sad how things such as bands, books and films that were once the centre of our universe lose their importance over time. I used to never be able to conceive never listening to Morrissey every single day. I still listen most days because I have such a large portion of his discography dominating my iPod and record and CD collection, but his music is not such an all consuming part of my life that it once was. But, when I'm "dancing and laughing and finally living I'll hear his voice in my head and think of him kindly." The weekend before writing the above journal entry I had experienced My "The Smiths" Weekend, which is what it became known as in my journal and in my mind. This is the page opposite the above entry ft. part of a crisps bag from one of the packets that my friend used to pay me back with if she borrowed money for lunch:

Since then I've read Morrissey and Marr: The Severed Alliance by Johnny Rogan, parts of Simon Goddard's Mozipedia and Songs That Saved Your Life as well as, of course, Morrissey's own Autobiography. I read the first one in a small amount of time, considering how long it is, and alongside The Complete Works of Oscar Wilde. Of course, such heavy books meant that I couldn't read them on the go, but they stayed loyally by my bedside for me to pick up each night. Similarly, with Morrissey's Autobiography I wanted to be one of the first people to finish reading it so I finished it the weekend after it was released. Lots of people have asked me what I thought about the autobiography and I always say that I loved it but the bit in the middle about The Smiths trial was drawn out and tedious. One of my favourite quotes from it is: 

"I cried for poetic language and I cried out to find those who were unafraid, this free agents, unbigoted and unshackled. I didn't want to live unseen, camouflaged within the crowd." 

The Americanisations do become annoying seeing as Morrissey is English. Morrissey is definitely better at writing songs than writing prose, but it's interesting to see what he has to say written in a different form.

I still often find myself making a cup of tea and dragging myself up to my room after a bad day to watch a Morrissey interview or 2 or 3 or 15. It took me months and months to build up the emotional strength to watch Morrissey's 1984 Earsay interview because I started watching it in around February 2013 and felt so emotionally involved in what Morrissey was saying that I had to stop watching it. I finally did during the following winter and now it's one of my favourites to watch. There's this bit where he talks about James Dean and says that he has a "poetic union" with him, "a blending of the souls, it's quite mysterious and embarrassing." I understand what he means by that when I'm watching Morrissey more than any other time. Anyone who has been obsessed with someone at some point during their adolescence knows what I mean, I hope. I've written so much about Morrissey and in one of the most recent articles I wrote of him for Pretty Issue 5, "I Can't Help Quoting You" I wrote this about this "poetic union":

I think that I really latched onto Morrissey because he seemed like a kindred spirit or, as Morrissey says himself about James Dean, we have a "poetic union", a "blending of the souls, it's quite mysterious and embarrassing." Looking to Morrissey was, and is, a way of coping with an empty social life and romantic ineptitude. He is the light that never goes out; living proof that you can get through a dismal adolescence yet still be successful and idolised in the future for channelling those feelings and experiences into his art.

I suppose that the only flaw in that is that Morrissey's life appears to continue to be somewhat dismal! It's true though, that Morrissey's music is a constant and it's the same with all art/culture. It has a level of permanence higher than other things that are much more fleeting. I've applied Morrissey lyrics to at least three boys and one girl and many a situation warrants a lamentation for a lost love with "I Know It's Over" playing softly in the background.



Taking inspiration from Tavi Gevinson's pages of Stevie Nicks lyrics, I organised the lyrics to some Smiths songs thematically. Words related to time and light and dark are two of the most frequently used. 

Here are more random Morrissey related pages from various journals I've filled since January last year:

Last night I went to see a local production of "Cabaret." It was really well done and some of the 1920s style outfits were gorgeous, even if they did look very much like fancy dress. The photos from last weekend's fun fair will hopefully be posted next weekend because Antonio's still waiting for his laptop to be repaired.

This is what I wore today:

Jumper from A Stitch to Wear, necklaces from Primark, gift from Sicily and DIY'd, jeans and brogues from Topshop. 

Here are some of my favourite photos/gifs of Morrissey:

One of the best Smiths concerts in full:

Here are some of the posts/articles I've written about Morrissey:

Obsession Confession: The Smiths for fabfem:

In Moz We Trust from Pretty Issue 1

I Can't Help Quoting You from Pretty Issue 5

If you've been reading my blog for some time you've probably noticed that I mention Morrissey at some point in most posts anyway.

Well, I'm gonna go and listen to "World Peace Is None of Your Business" on vinyl once more before I leave. I'll probably write about the concert in depth on my tumblr tomorrow. I hope you have a good weekend.

By the way, I was featured on Independent Fashion Blogger's Links a la Mode last week. Here are the rest of the links. They are fabulous and worth a read:


Links à la Mode: November 27th

  1. Anami Blog: How To Wear a Camel Coat
  2. Burgundy Whispers: Beauty Bit, Beauty Sleep
  3. Chic & Defined: Cozy & Chic Winter Accessories
  4. Chromobeauty: Guys, We Don't Wear Makeup For You
  5. Couture Crush: Trending Flash Tattoos: A New Beach Accessory
  6. Fashion Trends & More: 7 Winter Layering Essentials
  7. Fleur d'Elyse: Gifts Under $25
  8. Les Assorties: A Lesson in Fashion History
  9. Miss YoLEE: On Living Abroad
  10. Ms. Fabulous: Dance & Fashion at the Museum at FIT
  11. Musings of a Fashion Designer: Mabeline New York Millennial Fashion Debuts
  12. Myself Expressed: Audi Fashion Houston Five
  13. Pretty Passions: Winter Fashions
  14. Sheela Writes: Imagination is the Blueprint
  15. Stained Couture: Products to Minimize Pores
  16. Storybook Apothecary: The Best Holiday Gift Shops Around the Web
  17. Style Diary Byosy: Wedding Guest: African Style
  18. TLV Birdie: Blogging Tips: Your Questions, My Story
  19. We Are Ready Made: Socialist Youth
  20. Wild Beauty World: On Being Happy & Beautiful at 100

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

winter looks

If you live in England, it goes without saying that it has started to get colder, as it has done in a number of other areas around the world because (duh) it's winter. Each year I struggle to put together outfits that keep me warm and look more creative than simply a heavy coat, tights and boots which is what my daily uniform looks like once I've added layer after layer until I stop shivering. I have quite a variety of jumpers, but it still doesn't seem enough (HELLO AMERICAN APPAREL HAUL) to be able to wear a different jumper everyday without frequent repetition. In this post I'm going to moan about what a pain it is to get dressed in winter whilst providing images of runway inspiration from the Autumn/Winter 2014-15 collections for doing winter well.

Alexander Wang: the boots just look soooo comfy and warm amiright?

Alexis Mabille: so pretty and feminine. Capes are a stylish alternative to jackets, though you would probably still need to wear a warm top underneath.

Although there is a practical part of me that knows that it is winter, there's nothing I can do about it and I just need to dress for the weather, there's another part of me that wants to wear crop tops (I wore one today and it was foggy and rainy all day) and refuse to acknowledge the temperature. However, funnily enough, that becomes impossible to do once I actually move away from the radiator in my bedroom and realise I have to leave the house. An icy wind on the back of your neck tends to wake you up from any summertime fantasies you may be entertaining in your mind

Altuzurra: the jackets look really cozy

Altuzurra and Christian Dior: silky materials underneath jackets and coats always look sssexy

Unlike autumn, where layering is fun and creative, you almost always have to ultimately go with a winter coat that covers up any gorgeous outfit you have arranged underneath. If, like me, you're an idiot who decides to wear a cropped t-shirt at the end of November, you will either have to add a scarf and jacket or resign to wearing a jumper. However, wearing eye catching materials that are still warm means that you can have your coat open and show off what you're wearing underneath.

Christian Dior: all hail the trouser suit.

Christian Dior: Christmas looks and Comme des Garcons: I bet it's so snug that you feel like you're walking round in your duvet.

So, what do you do when stuck in this kind of style rut? Look at the Fall/Winter 2014-15 collections of course. I mean, that's what they're there for, unless you're part of the super rich who can actually afford to buy runway looks because in that case they're clearly for buying instead of drooling over. I always forget about the AW collections because I'm so preoccupied with thinking about/looking at the much more recent Spring/Summer shows and trying to be oh-so fashion forward. However, seasons are seasons for a reason (look at that killer rhyme there!) and, at the end of November, a faux fur coat just might be more weather appropriate than a skimpy floral sun dress.

Comme des Garcons

Comme Des Garcons

Comme des Garcons' AW14 collection might look like a series of exaggerated version of winter looks, but Kawakubo has actually hit the nail on the head in regards to how I feel like dressing on cold, dark November mornings. I usually get to frustrated that I just grab a jumper and feel like walking round with it over my head, both to hide my tired/pissed off face and keep my head warm.

Givenchy- 1970s vibes


Hermes was so simplistic but so effective. Every look is sophisticated and easy to pull off. Faux fur gilets are so chic and knee-length ones make an even bigger statement. Invest! Invest! Suit trousers in an array of shades will also never go out of fashion.


Burberry Prorsum: this is the way to wear scarves this season: hanging loose and tied round the waist with a complimentary belt.

When the winter mornings are so dark and you don't feel like getting out of bed until late, it can be useful to plan outfits the evening before. That seems like a patronisingly nerdy, practical "tip" but I find it useful to at least have some vague plan of what I'm going to wear the next day. It also gives me something to look forward to. Even if my day looks as though it'll be boring or worse, an on point outfit gives me a reason to get out of bed. Besides, you never want to hear anyone say that "you look like you got dressed in the dark" (even if you feel like shouting OF COURSE I DID. EVERY MORNING IS DARK. IT'S NOVEMBER.) 

Saturday, 22 November 2014

i could've been someone to you

I watched "Almost Famous" for the first time a couple of months ago and I really liked it.
Last weekend I finished writing a set of short stories about teenagers in a British suburban neighbourhood (ya because I'm a teenager living in a British suburban neighbourhood, you guessed it.) If you would like a copy of the seven stories then please email me ( Here's a preview from one of them:

Callum looked into the man’s face. No, he wasn’t that old. Perhaps fifteen years older than Callum himself. Callum wondered if he had a wife or children, and if he was happy. He wondered if he had ever experience heartbreaking unrequited love and if he ever got over it. Perhaps he still thinks about the object of his affections now when his wife’s away and he’s feeling lonely. Does he look back fondly or is it still so painfully real that he has to get drunk to suppress the memory? Callum wondered if Evan had ever fucked up his life as bad as he had. He wondered if Evan was as selfish as he was. Instead of letting out any such thoughts, Callum thought it best not to invite any unnecessary closeness, so maintained the detached exterior, “So you’re a shrink now?” Callum said.

When I was in Portugal I read the brilliant "Women of the Beat Generation" by Brenda Knight. The poetry and prose was so dreamy and typically stream-of-conscious Beat style. However, the many of the women's life stories were really tragic. I related to a lot of the lives and works of these women in some cases simply because they were women. A particularly tragic life story was that of Elise Cowen who was in love with Allen Ginsberg but he loved Peter Orlovsky. Cowen's mental health began to deteriorate and she was constantly plagued with paranoia. At 28 years old she took her own life. This is believed to be her last poem, seeming eerily like a suicide note:

No love
No compassion
No intelligence
No beauty
No humility
Twenty-seven years is enough
Mother – too late – years of meanness – I’m sorry
Daddy – What happened?
Allen – I’m sorry
Peter – Holy Rose Youth
Betty – Such womanly bravery
Keith – Thank you
Joyce – So girl beautiful
Howard – Baby take care
Leo – Open the windows and Shalom
Carol – Let it happen
Let me out now please –
Please let me in.
So much of literature is male dominated and reading about women writers actually has a psychological effect that makes me feel more comfortable about being a female writer because it is inspiring to have role models who share a more similar life to you/that you imagine yourself having in the future. 

I have been rewatching a lot of "Skins" lately. I watched the first two series in just over a week and now I'm half way through the third. I tend to do most of my homework in free periods at school so when I get home it's like SKINS YAAASS. When I first watched it it sort of annoyed me how party/drug/sex orientated it was because I felt that I couldn't really relate to that lifestyle. It's known for being over exaggerated, which Eleanor wrote about in Issue 5 of Pretty DRAMA AND DORIAN GRAY, so most teenagers probably can't. However, having watched Palo Alto and written a bunch of short stories about teens, I find that I can emotionally relate a lot more. This is something I wrote in my journal recently: 

I always end up feeling sorry for the characters that morally represent everything I hate. They are the sort of people that I would hate to be around in real life and I'd feel embarrassed or ashamed to admit to people how much a empathise with them. I wonder if it makes me a bad person, or if it makes me a good person with a great capacity for empathy, but lately I've been feeling it's the formerI end up feeling the most sorry for Cook in "Skins" and Fred in "Palo Alto" even though they're both assholes. I think that's because their struggle to figure out what life is, who they etc etc is so intense. I'm sure it could be argued that they're both just emotionally underdeveloped sexist assholes, but there are definitely signs of them being more complex than that. I think there's a reckless, selfish part to everyone and sometimes I lie in bed at night thinking about what would happen if that part of me took over and it frightens me because that isn't ME, but I've thought it, so it must be. 

I spent a lot of last year and the beginning of this year isolating myself from everyone else because they could never ever possibly understand the plight of my adolescence cry cry angst angst but this year I pay much more attention to the people I'm around because this time next year I'll be around new people and we'll all be trying to at least pretend to be a little more like adults. 
I tried to explore a number of different personalities (some likeable, many not) in Concrete Narratives; especially the first one which was in this issue of Cherry.

It also relates to last month's Rookie theme, The Other: in particular, Krista's article, "Monstro(us)"

Last night I had the first sleep over I've had for ages. We watched "Palo Alto" and "Skins" but mostly sat on my bed listening to this playlist and Pure Heroine, talking about the future, uni, BOYS, friendship, hot teachers etc. It was lovely and it seemed like we were sitting in pink light which felt ethereally like we were somewhere where these things didn't really matter.

This is what I wore today:

thrifted shirt, primark jewellery and pearls that were a gift, new look skirt, m&s tights
A few more photos from my holiday in Portugal last month: 

I've rewatched "Palo Alto" twice in the last couple of weeks. Although I liked it straight away, I was not really struck by its powerful relevance and overall beauty until I watched it for the second time. Now, I can't stop thinking about it. I'm so glad that it came out just before I began my last ever year at school because it matches the vibes of this year seamlessly which translates as me doing things simply because they seem very "Palo Alto."

husband gooaaallls um what
Pretty's Spring/Summer 2015 review issue has now been out for around a month. You can email me for a free PDF copy. Alternatively, you can have a free paper copy with any other paper copy of Pretty that you purchase from my Etsy.  

Now I'm off to the fun fair in town ohmygod woohoo!!! There will definitely be photos from it posted next weekend. Hope you all have a good rest of the weekend.

have a "my webcam is terrible nd i haven't used it since 2011 but i'm happy bc i'm going to the fun fair tho my hair is a mess" selfie xoxo