Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Shall I Trash The Red Carpet Again? - Oh Go On Then!

My first reaction to the 2012 Oscar modes (that's what a big dressy number was called in my day) was not to bother. This year I just didn't feel physically sick at any point in scrolling along the Red Carpet and really loved some of the dresses.  Then I realised how much the hairdo contributes to the YES/MAYBE/ SORRY DEAR/BE OFF WITH YOU ratings.

Here are my winners for getting it right top to toe:

 Gwyneth Paltro,  perfect ivory column inches in Tom Ford and she's axed her folk singer's middle parting, hallelujah.  Commendable restraint in focusing her jewellery at the bottom of one arm.

 Ah, Penelope Cruz looking fabulously 50s in the sort of dress my mother didn't quite wear, I wish she
had.  Love the MGM Studios hair style and the soft blue chiffon used to its very best effect. Some may be disappointed that she's not channelling primal sex here but the  look produces in me a low groan of envy and delight. 

 More vintage glamour from Milla Jovovic in Elie Saab. Not just soignée but smouldering. 

This is just one of those magnificent surprises that stops you in your tracks. Emma Stone, pitch perfect
in fluid Giambattista Valli.  Big retro halter neckline shows off lovely shoulders, jawline, eyeliner, eyebrows.  Titian hair a non-clash clash with cherry red. Well-judged jewellery.  
[Come on, that's enough! Ed.]

This Louis Vuitton is another front runner for the gorgeous vermilion chiffon with the pink clutch, oh oh.  The little diamond bow is perfect but I'm just blocking out the defeatist necklace and realising that's what's very slightly annoying.  Less is generally more and  Michelle Williams gamine hair does cut it. Charmant.  But talking French...

Uh oh.  I am afraid there's some cognitive dissonance between this relentlessly ingenue hairstyle (or has she just forgotten to take the pins out?) and the concert party diva's gown.  Better not go on.. Mais quel dommage, Berenice Bejo dans votre Elie Saab.

Nobody loves a piece of 1950s Christian Dior couture more than I do.  But why does Natalie Portman look so high-school prom and prim in this?  I think it's the damn hairstyle again - lovely in itself, but had she done a Cruz or a Jovovic she would have looked a million dollars.  And that ice. Just looks like she's borrowed Mummy's necklace. All wrong, all wrong. Sorreee.

We're in the Box of Chocolates merchandising category here.  Ellie Kemper in Armani and..

 And lovely old Meryl Streep doing Ferrero Rocher a good turn. Or is that Terry's All Gold?
Isn't that dress going to fall off her right shoulder sometime soon?

Talking of which. This is one of my favourite colours which suits Missi Pyle's  colouring nicely and can only really work in georgette.  But the just-out-of-bed hair somehow reinforces the top notes of Sears Catalogue negligée in this odd design by Valentina Delfino. It's something about the last section that gives an expectation of maribou trimmed mules.
Apparently this fabric was made 'without cruelty to silk-worms'. (Is that because it's

Jury's out on the transgressive angel look here.  I do get it, particularly the severe hairline and the red lips with the gossamer fabric, but just to be annoying - can anyone say just exactly what's wrong with the bustline?  Perhaps it just doesn't fit?  That's Rooney Mara in Givenchy.

 I can't improve on this being 'the colour of old bras'. I wish I 'd
thought of that but it was Tom + Lorenzo here.  Click on them for a really funny tilt at the Red Carpet. Kristen Wiig in J. Mendel being mildly subversive by doing the careless dressing-up box thing. It looks as if it smells of mothballs.

Ouch, there had to be an undisputed booby prize. Does Busy Phillips in Dolce & Gabbana remind anyone else of a parking lot?  Worn tarmac and something-reminiscent-of-a-crash-barrier earrings and bracelet.  Who chose the shoes at random?  Finally I have to agree with Tom + Lorenzo about the bad hair styling.

Monday, 20 February 2012

In At The Deep End

Found myself this morning, nine o'clock at the Olympic Aquatic Centre. Nobody more surprised than me, really,  a) to be going to the Diving World Cup and b) to have got anywhere significant by that time in the morning.  Ah but when I was describing where I lived in the last post I didn't tell you that I am 30 minutes away from the Olympic site  and guess who hasn't got any tickets. 

These are computer generated images of architect Zaha Hadid's stunning design which I was keen to see and experience. I found them here.

Unfortunately our approach from Stratford Underground station did not create the best vista.

Below, you can see a part of the main stadium at left and that big grey thing in the background  is the water polo venue.  It was a bit parky as you can tell from the two marshalls who didn't have the benefit of the big foam rubber gloves worn by the London Underground staff.  At every point there were friendly and helpful men and women directing the crowds, checking tickets or doing airport style security checks.  This seemed a good sign.

 Backtracking then, this picture was on exiting the Stratford hub which I gather is the main gateway to the Olympic park. Cunningly, you have to walk through the  massive spanking new Westfield Retail Therapy Mall first. (I was victim to it on my way out after rather a good lunch with my friends of a certain age  in  a Jamie Oliver restaurant.  I simply had to worship at John Lewis, L K Bennett and Kiehls.) 

Getting there finally..   The Pool.  It was  bright and  warm and thankfully didn't  smell of chlorine, feet and mouldy old swimsuits like the school swimming galas I remember.  A couple of hours on the hard seats was about enough and I could have done with a bottle of water.  My husband  later poured scorn on my dehydration issues with his usual rant about General Montgomery's army crossing the desert in World War II on half a pint. So annoying.

Oh and the diving itself?   The Men's Synchronised Three Metre Springboard.  Disappointed not to see Britain's cute superstar Tom Daley, just 17,  but it was  riveting watching a pair of athletes like peas in a pod producing variations on the perfect flight of fancy. With some authority I began giving them marks myself occasionally getting it spot on, more often than not well wide of the mark.  Once I'd watched the action replay, I could see exactly where I had misjudged things. Ha.   Loved it and now desperate to see the Synchronised Swimming. Oh yes.

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Domestic Goddess Gourmet

The Bag Lady & The Tramp

I excelled myself and cooked my husband a three-course meal tonight. It kind of evolved from the contents of my shopping trolley:  Warsaw Pact cabbage soup; hill-farmed lamb chops from the Ginger Pig butchers with new potatoes and erm some rather beautiful dark crinkly cabbage from the deli; post-war austerity baked apples and cream.  There were a couple of hitches: after a fight to hide the mint sauce bottle, it was found to have a sell-by date of March 2008 and I forgot to buy the cream.  But we did have candles. Valentine's Night comes but once a year, oh.  All rather lovely and funny as it turned out.  

Where I live is a compelling mixture of rackety East London life and Cool Central.   Since I have a phobia of supermarket carparks (ran out of petrol in one when I was nine months pregnant  and on another occasion, caught my bumper on the crash barrier whilst trying to overtake) I find I can cover all my bases on foot (hence the eco-friendly but none too chic shopping trolley).   

So, one way there are shops of every nationality and the wondrous cheapo LIDL with six different types of single-estate chocolate and a themed promotion every week to up the thrill factor. It could be DIY, pet care,  motorbiking, gardening or my absolute favourite,  equestrianism. There's not a horse in miles and the stable buckets, numnahs, riding crops and curry combs linger in the remaindered bin until someone like me sheepishly gives them a home in case I make a painting about them one day.   

In the opposite direction, is the sequestered 'village'  lately colonised by an award-winning deli, old-fashioned greengrocers, fishmonger and the kindly but costly rustic butcher. I have also noticed a wine shop with blackboards outside offering tasting and loving advice which is where I popped this afternoon.  OK, I know nothing much about wine and find LIDL's  shiraz cabernet sauvignon has  cheeky topnotes and a smooth enough finish for me at £4.29.   On entering, I had the sense of being received as a bit of an old bag lady with me trolley and I confirmed it by suggesting a price point of a tenner.  Could I try something red? Could I hell.
In fact it was grudgingly dispensed from a high-tech temperature controlled apparatus into
an interesting stemless glass, swilled round and handed to me.  I tasted it without any sniffing , swishing  and slurping, polished it off and announced I didn't like it. That, it seemed, was my second or who knows which mistake but it was pretty evident I wasn't getting another crack at the  tasting.  Without managing to restore my dignity, I  chose something because I liked the label and was out of there before you could say mise en bouteille dans ma salle de bain.   Horrible. 

image courtesty http://retrorack.blogspot.com
Related Posts with Thumbnails