Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Yesterday's outfit

Tops: Urban Outfitters and H&M
Trousers: flea market
Necklace: Vero Moda
Flip-flops: Ava's old

This is Audrey. She miaows for hours behind the screen door, wanting to go out. We are currently looking for a proper harness for her.

More than a pretty face?

I have a bone to pick with Marie Claire.

About ten years ago I bought an issue of UK Marie Claire, which had a multi-page survey about women's body images. In this (and also that) day and age, I thought that they were tackling important issues: that women had the right to feel better about themselves and their bodies, that they would not use only stick-thin models etc. The survey, however, was targeted at women who did feel bad about their own bodies. The options they had for discussing one's weight ranged from something like "I wish I was thinner" to "I guess I am okay". The entire survey was tilted in a way that said "yeah yeah, I like being me - but boy do I wish I was thin!". At the time I was struggling to put on weight, and the survey gave me no option to say so. I wrote a polite letter while submitting my questionnaire, telling them that I wished that they had given more thought and range to their Q&As.

A couple of weeks later, a cheerful lady called me and wanted to ask me a few questions, because they were really interested in someone (ie. me) who wanted to gain weight, not lose it. Great, I thought. "So, you are recovering from an eating disorder or something?" she asked me. "Sheesh, no, where did you get that idea?", I replied, and it all went downhill from there. She refused to understand that I was not sick, or that I was only asking for a more balanced view when it came to way women were seeing their bodies. "Yes, it is possible that someone else than just me feels that they are too skinny instead of too fat, and you know, there are women out there who are happy exactly the way they are", I tried to persuade her, but it was of no use. I boycotted Marie Claire for about 10 years after that, because I knew for a fact that there were plenty of perfectly normal skinny girls out there who a) were just as womanly as anyone else, and b) who should have the right to have body issues too. Or who knows, perhaps I really was the only one who thought that.

So why am I raving about this incident now? Well, because I just got a free subscription of the US Marie Claire. I quite like their fashion pages, but oh deary me, I must stay away from the articles! The September issue features a story of two women who found out at the early stages of their pregnancies that their babies would not live for more than a couple of days at most. As you might guess, one chose to carry the child regardless, and the other chose to have an abortion (or as she puts it: to terminate the pregnancy, because she does not use the word abortion). The way Marie Claire portrays these women gives me the creeps. Guess which one decided to give birth to the baby?

Yup, you guessed it, the lady on the left, portrayed sitting in the sunlight with her two children and roses and balloons, visiting the dead baby's grave. The one who aborted sits in a dim room with her two dogs, looking away from the camera despite the fact that she, too, has children now, but hey, that doesn't count because in her words, she "will never be forgiven for making the choice" she made. Perhaps I am awfully cynical, but I do not believe for a second that Marie Claire wanted to create a balanced story here. And don't even get me started about the article featuring The New Trophy Wife.

They actually have the nerve to label women like actress Ziyi Zhang, violinist Jennifer Chun and strategist for MySpace China Wendi Deng as examples of a phenomenon where "sleeping with a guy old enough to be your grandfather is just creepy" and asking if these women are "glorified opportunists" looking for "stand-ins for emotionally repressed Asian dads". Talking about non-PC, but hey, I guess it is okay because the article was written by an Asian woman who has had her share of white men with a fetish.

For a magazine that advertises itself as "More than a pretty face", that face is looking really really ugly to me right about now.

Monday, 24 August 2009

24 August 2009

Tops: H&M and Urban Outfitters
Jeans: denimbirds
Scarf worn as bow: flea market
Shoes: Bronx
Earrings: Lynn Allen

Saturday, 22 August 2009

Just a question

Who in their right mind would abandon a house like this one?

Friday, 21 August 2009


Chris has been taking me around my new home town. There are literally dozens of gorgeous late 19th and early 20th century buildings in the downtown area, but to my shock and horror, they are mostly abandoned. Chris tells me that this is a common phenomenon in this part of the United States. As people flock into suburbs and malls, old downtowns lose their appeal to the public, if they ever really had one in the first place. To me, it is a crime to leave these types of buildings without the respect and care they deserve:

I couldn't even imagine seeing something like this in Europe, windows boarded, roof growing weeds. I am sure this place must have a ton of history that no one is interested in restoring. Did someone live here? Perhaps it used to be a church? I am thinking about getting in touch with the local history society in order to find out more about these buildings, and why they are in the state they are.

This is what I wore yesterday:

Organza top: UFF (1 euro score!)
Top underneath: Wrangler
Skirt: Bebe
Shoes: One Way
Sunnies: Accessorize

Monday, 17 August 2009

Home sweet home

We started here about three weeks ago...

... and ended up here last Thursday. (Well, not on the road, but the scenery is pretty.)

Moving house can be a real pain. I had no idea that I had accumulated as much stuff as I had. Add a way too short of a timeframe to get things packed while showing a certain someone the best parts of Finland, two stressed out kitties, one frantic woman (I love you Minni!) with her three children moving in while one is moving out and the fear of US Customs & Immigration officials, well, let's just say I have had one hell of a month. Surprisingly, everything went well. The cats hated travelling as much as one could expect but they have settled in pretty well so far, and I got no trouble whatsoever at Immigration. It was almost too easy, and definitely not worth stressing out as much as I have. Anyway, here is my new outfit location:

Top and skirt: Urban Outfitters
Necklace: Accessorize
Flip-flops: Ava's old

Sunday, 16 August 2009

A little lost

I seem to have lost my camera cable while moving to another continent. Hmm, not all that surprising, I guess - I am convinced that there is a universal quota for items to end up missing after moving house. I am trying to get organised in my new home and will be back shortly!

Saturday, 1 August 2009

Stop shopping future waste! plea

Wow, it is August already! I went a little nuts today, at UFF. Or actually it was three UFF stores, but hey, who's counting! So yes, it was that day of the season when everything cost 1 euro. It is really easy for things to get out of hand when everything is so cheap; there is a fine line between clever bargaining and pure greed. I was happy with myself in the end though. I didn't buy anything just because it was cheap.

What got me worried, though, was the (lack of) quality of the clothes available. Considering that the best items had been snipped earlier (and for more money), I guess it is only natural that there isn't a lot of good stuff to choose from on the last day of the sale. But the amount of bad quality stuff is worrisome. Today I witnessed piles and piles of cheap-ass KappAhl and Lindex pieces not finding a new home. How will it be in five or ten years, when charity stores and second hand boutiques drown in cheaply manufactured Gina Tricot and H&M clothes? Or who knows, perhaps this is happening already, but I am just not seeing it yet. After having been on a couple of more or less unsuccessful H&M strikes before, I sincerly hope that this was my final wake-up call. I declare: I will stop shopping at these types of waste-producing stores. The only exception I'll make is for underwear. Who's with me?

Well, like I mentioned above, I went a little nuts at UFF. I tried on the craziest things, just for a laugh, and found myself buying really random items, but I believe all of them to be a) very wearable, and b) certainly unique. Pictures are coming soon! This is what I wore today:

Top: Selected Femme; Top underneath: H&M; skirt: American Apparel; Tights: Cyber Shop; Cardigan: Lindex; Scarf: Diesel; Shoes: Kurt Geiger; Necklace: flea market