What I think of during exams #2

I want to sleep. Oh, how I want to sleep.

If I wear that shirt for my exam, will I still be able to wear it the next day?

Coconut yoghurt is really good.

I just want to go to a cafe and have a drink with friends.

I actually know this answer!

What if there are no buses in Poland I can take?

It’s hot in here, jeeze.

I like wearing earrings.

Oh how I miss him! And her! And them!

Will my pasta sauce still be good tonight?

I never even pretended to be good at concentration, really. This could very well have been my stream of consciousness at some point, though mostly it includes way more thoughts that are not to the point. I’ve had three exams now, and I think I passed them all so far. Though today’s one was tough, but even if I haven’t passed, I think I still did well enough to ‘tolerate’ the grade, in which case I wouldn’t have to retake it. But I still hope I passed it all.

It’s true though that I really want to sleep. I have very little time in between my exams, most of them are at 9 in the morning, and I am better at studying in the evening. Plus the fact that I have trouble falling asleep quite often. So it comes as no surprise that I’m slowly turning into a zombie. But two more exams to go and then it’s over, thank god, and I will sleep again!

At least, if the Poland adventure that will happen in less than a month won’t cause more sleepless nights.

After having done an exam, I always feel like I deserve a little time off. And now I’ve got this secret addiction that is somewhat wrong (what’s the term for that again?) : Hotter than my daughter. It’s this very typical British tv program in which they give an often overly displaying mother and overly covered/sloppy daughter a makeover. If you wonder why on earth you’d watch it, well: 1. the accents! The accents! Really!  2. Cringing at the mothers who barely wear clothes, so you can be extra happy with your own mum. 3. Seeing the confidenceless daughter and be happy with your own sense of style. 4. You can be braindead while watching it. And that’s good.

Of course they alway find a deeper reason for the mothers to dress too young and for the daughters to dress so carelessly. And in the end, they mostly mess up. Really, they turn them into something they want to be either… Often it’s a little better, but not good. ‘Inspiring’ at most. Isn’t it sad that they are supposed to make them prettier and they end up not as pretty as they could be? Sometimes though, you can clearly see improvement. Some of them seem to realise how pretty they can actually look. And that is good, because I fully believe in the idea that if you take a little care of your looks, it can do wonders for your confidence. At times you can see them kind of realise that they should be more confident and not hide away. Awww!

But mostly I watch it to be braindead for a little while. And it makes me realise that my wardrobe is really okay, and my mother is a very classy lady. We’d never get into that program. How good is that!

What do you do when you need to take a break?

That’s Too Bag

As a woman, I don’t understand how men survive without bags. This might have something to do with the size of ladies’ wallets and pockets. I have a giant wallet and yet that is not because of all the money in it (unfortunately). Next to that I know own a smart phone – almost the smallest you can find, but still too big for the pockets in my jeans and other trousers.

Long story short: I carry bags with me wherever I go. And I’m okay with that. It means I can carry tissues with me, and lip balm, and sun glasses, when the sun shines. A bottle of water, some food, a book. A vest. You know – stuff. Wherever I go, I need stuff. And hence, a bag.

I like bags though. I like seeing beautiful bags in a shop, or hanging from my arm. Not that I own many, because a good bag is expensive, but still. I have one little black bag which my mother had bought when she was my age more or less. I’m still using it often – so very useful. Next to that I have a few other bags, but truth be told: they suffer. They suffer because I use them to stuff things in. The bag I used to take with me to class (and to cafes) has died. So recently I bought another bag to sill have one for school.

Say hello to my new love, the Cowboy Bag. It’s pretty giant, but that’s okay, since I will use it as hand luggage on planes too. You can stuff it, it all fits. It’s my new partner in crime when I go out for the day too. When buying this, I imagined myself traveling around with this bag, sitting in trains and airports and going to class with my bottle of water (1,5l).

Sometimes it feels like  a bag is more than a means of transport. Sometimes it feels as if it’s a partner in crime, a mate who accompanies you everywhere. A reliable one. So yes, I can kind of fall in love with them, and get all enthusiastic about the topic.

Do you like bags? Do you carry them around and love them? And if you’re a man: how do you manage without them?

The Fear of Beige Pants

They wear beige pants. They take no risks. They have planned their lives. Go to university. Find a man who has a well paying job. Have children. Be a rich and correct wife. They follow fashion in a sort of minimized way. Their opinions are correct, as they have good hearts. They are kind, good at everything they do – no real, deep talents, but a general talent for everything. They end up being all the same.

I’ve been to school with a lot of these girls. They had their lives planned out, even if they didn’t say it out loud. I’ve always had the idea there was but one way to go for them: a way to a good life. No financial worries. A good husband. Great children. You could see them and guess their ambitions. They all resembled each other and they all looked the same. It was a way of talking, behaving and dressing. These girls would always look neutral. They followed fashion, but not as fashion victims. They would always look decent. Sometimes, they wore clothes you can still wear when you are 30 and feeling still young enough.
Succeeding at school, succeeding in life. With all the money they were born in, it would work out. After all  they know what to do. Go to university and become a doctor or lawyer or something that makes big money.
The aim? Status. Maybe I’m wrong,but it seemed like fitting in was priority. For fitting in, you had to have this ambition, these clothes, this behaviour. It was a club you could only enter if you adapted to the rules.
While they probably didn’t even realise there were rules. They most likely don’t think about their lives like this.

Three ways to become conventional.

Three ways to become conventional.

But I do.
I was never one of those girls. I was on the other side, to say it that way. I was the one fearing beige pants. Though we’re definitely not poor, we’re not rich either. We think about the money we spend. I didn’t want to become doctor. Still not. You could find me wearing fish net stockings, or T-shirts that were perhaps not really made for school. I was the girl with the weird opinions who wrote freaky stories about killing people (not that anyone knows).
So I didn’t quite fit in. And I was okay with that. However kind they were, we would just never be good friends. Small talk, yes. But the core, the essence is too different. My friends were all different from them. They didn’t wear fish nets, but they didn’t care so much about status either. And we did get along.

I’m still okay with not fitting in there. Now at university, things have changed anyway. There’s not such a group in my class. We’re probably all a bit different, if only for our studies… Maybe that’s the reason I am no longer such a ‘light rebel’. I’ve become more like ‘yeah, this is just what I like, whether it’s mainstream or not’. But there hasn’t been a day I regretted the things I wore at school, the things I said. That was me at that moment. And actually, I’m proud I had the guts to do that, to be different in a place where everyone was so alike.

All this never changed the fact that I fear becoming that kind of person, a conventional person with that exact behaviour I can’t even describe with words. It must have started like three years ago. I got worried about the fact that one day, I might be ashamed for the person I was at 16. Later on I feared wearing beige pants when growing older. There’s nothing wrong with those pants. But for me they represent a kind of person I don’t want to be. I want to accept all those freaky sides of me that perhaps have disappeared over time. They were there once. You can’t wipe away the person you were when you were younger.
But what if one day, I’d become a person I consider to be boring? A person that fits in? Really fits in, I mean. Like, with kids and a hubby. With no edges. Just a good person. No more killing people in stories. Contra death penalty.

River Woods - a good brand if you want to be in the Club.

River Woods – a good brand if you want to be in the Club.

That fear caused me to one day write about it in my diary. I summed up the things I didn’t want to become and the things I wanted to be(come). The other thing I did to prevent this all, was getting a helix.
Now that was badass. It’s just an earring, but in a place you are not supposed to have an earring when you want to fit in the Club. It might not make me prettier or whatever, but it says something about me. Even when I take it out, there will be a little hole and it will show that I wasn’t like them. Because of this thing, I will never be able to become really like them. At least because it shows I was different once. Not a real rebel, but I did have my own opinions and things I liked. They weren’t always generally accepted (Sex Gang Children?). But it didn’t make a bad person. Maybe it even made me interesting.

One day I’ll read my diary again and I’ll be relieved: I still don’t wear beige pants. (23 november 2011)

Dressed to kill (and dance)

I’m sorry that I’m unable to comment on your posts now, but I’m busy as hell. (Like I ever say I’m not busy at all…)
But you know, it takes time to find a prom dress… Oh yes, it’s prom time here! But prom here is somewhat different than you might think. It sounds chique and classy, but in fact it’s just like a normal party. There’s bad music but the drinks are cheaper than in an other disco. Sounds good, hm? But believe me, when drinks are cheap (or for free), there’ll be problems. After having been to Italy with people from my age, I know that drinks should not even be cheap. Expensive stuff will do as well.

BUT, vey important, what to wear to the prom? Last year, I had this amazing dress with see-through pieces, which made it sexy without being slutty. (That’s what I believe at least!) Pictures had been taken so it’s more or less impossible to wear the same dress. Not that anyone remembers what I wore, but they could recognize it. The horror! It took me three days of shopping before I found something good. Three days. Seriously.
But it’s not as simple as it might seem. You know, it has to be an evening dress, something you wear to go clubbing, it can’t be too expensive, it has to be a dress you can still wear after the prom stuff, and above all, it has to be pretty. Have I told you already that today’s fashion isn’t my choice? There’s also the problem of all those fancy cheap dresses in satin… You can find them in quite a lot of shops that respect my budget. But they look incredibly cheap. It’s just the fabric and the cut that makes them look so damn cheap.
Those dresses weren’t an option. I was looking for something sophisticated that would blow everyone away. Do you know that feeling like ‘this is it’? Not necessarily for clothes only. Have you ever seen something, worn something, held something that gave you the feeling that it was absolutely perfect and fitting and amazing? I was searching for that experience. The sky is the limit.
Luckily my mother and I went shopping again yesterday, and I tried on three dresses. The first one was a lace one. It didn’t look bad, but the shoulders didn’t fit. I have quite ‘broad’ shoulders for my size. The next dress suffered from the same problem.

But then.

Then I tried on a black dress that had a slight touch of my Chanel clothes. It looked sophisticated, classy and sexy at the same time. A woman that was sitting there, whose daughter was trying on clothes too, told me that that dress was better than the ones before. In the end, my mother and I decided to choose that last dress, because it was the one that taped all the eyes of the present men on me. The eyes of men are a sort of measurer for clothes.

I guess you want pictures now (let me believe that you do), and you’ll get them… Once.

It's not this dress, for the obvious reasons.

The Horror

The horror. The extreme horror.
I’ve been to one of the cities with an university yesterday, mainly to gather information. (Information. Information. We want information.) You know, you have to decide what studies you’ll do, and where you’ll do them. But after having spent half an hour in the building where I would end up having classes, I decided that that particular city will not be my home. It was such an ugly building, it looked worn out and some of the walls were grey. Never make your walls look like concrete, okay? It didn’t feel comfortable. And the chairs. Oh, the chairs. That were no chairs. That were pieces of wood, straight wood, put behing your back.

But that is another sort of horror. I’ve become smarter now, as we say here, I now know better what to do, where to do it.
The real horror started when we went to the heart of the city and entered some shops.
We shouldn’t have done that.
Why, oh, why are beautiful, simple yet not ordinary clothes so damn impossible to find? You know, when you don’t feel comfortable in the clothes you’re wearing, it ruins your day. You have to wear something that you really want to wear, in which you feel good. But that becomes a problem when your style changes faster than Belgian weather and all shops have the same damn ugly, UGLY clothes. And ugly, UGLY shoes. Or, at least, shoes that don’t fit my profile and image. Because that is very possible.

The world is a hard place. Tell me about it. Not only there are no longer good clothes, but I also forced you to read this post…


Funny fast fashion

This is a great video, so well-made that you must admire it anyway. I can’t say anymore about it. It’s fashion again, I know. But it’s dance too, and watch how all pieces just flow into each other! And how even the dancing fits the period! It’s just fantastic!


Fashion feeling’s fucked up

“Wear this denim skirt with a white blouse and dark panties.”
“Don’t combine black with black.”
“Never wear two prints together.”
Everyone with a slight interest in how to look good in clothes is being hit by millions of advice: do’s and don’ts. Ignorance is the best way of handling them, I guess, because those tips are in fact not more than a attack to your own taste. Why should we only wear one print at a time? Because when you would be seen by a fashion editor, she would think you’re dressed in a wrong way? But people who dress differently are remarked and called ‘self-willed’ in a positive way. So tell me, why would we listen to advice that changes every time a new collection is showed?
 Lady Gaga: which came first: chicken or egg?

Fashion designers like people that inspire them, like Lady Gaga (it’s up to you to decide whether she’s worth it or not!), but do you ever hear them talk about people who always wear exactly what they made? Let me tell you this: they find it probably quite boring that someone only wears catwalk copies instead of having a personal style and taste. You have a lot of people though, who only care about ‘the newest! the latest! the real!’. Par exemple Anna Dello Russo. She has an appartement for clothes only, because she has so much clothes and shoes that she needs it. Straight from the catwalk stuff, worn once or not and then a news collection arrives and the ‘old’ clothings can’t be worn anymore. Imagine that she would be seen in a pair of trousers of last season… As a fashion director you can’t do that. You’d deserve to be banished.
. Anna Dello Russo, can you even remember this dress?
It is a weird life when you have so many stuff that you are not able to wear everything, and that you wear everything just once. For average people this is impossible, and in fact it is really decadent. Today’s tendency, dear readers, is that you have to renew yourself every time. Every f*cking time you show your face, you should surprise, shock, entertain. You should be feminine, a little bit male and completely up to date. Because – and this might just be the most surprising thing – that would mean you have ‘feeling with clothes’. You’re ‘fashionable’.
Daphne Guinness Daphne Guinness attends the launch of NARS 15X15 a project to celebrate 15 years of NARS at Industria Superstudio on November 12, 2009 in New York City. Daphne Guinness, please shock us!

Permission to doubt all of that? Thanks. I’m not an obedient fashion magazine reader. When someone tells me to do this, I’ll want to do that. Et cetera. Therefor I’m not ‘fashionable’ and so on. But a few weeks ago I combined a  sweater/dress-sweater I bought two years ago with a new pair of stockings and I rediscovered the beauty of the sweater. In my very humble opinion, that is more ‘feeling with clothes’ than Anna Dello Russo has. Clothes are not disposable things. The Zeitgeist wants us to cherish our clothes, to buy clothes that will last long time. The new luxury, remember? Why are fashion pioneers not participating? When, oh when have we stopped thinking for ourselves?
Please. Do me a favour. Wear what you want to wear, don’t mind the opinion of fashion people/magazines and so on. What do they know? In the end, they have to change their mind every collection. We don’t have to. Hell to their opinion, we’ll have our own!

Bloody nails!

It is sort of art when you’re able to do this. Must be REALLY hard. My brother said it looked painful and not good because it looks like blood. Of course I don’t like ripped out nails, but that doesn’t mean I don’t like this – it’s meant funny, I guess. Not too seriously. Because we don’t want to take ourselves to serious, right?

For daily joy of this kind, check out Haute Macabre – the picture is from that site, obviously. They select the ‘darker’ fashion topics. Just take a look, it’s a really nice site for every one who likes to see fashion that is a bit different. But hell, today it seems that I can’t explain things right.

Wearing clothes, not brands

Two months ago, more or less, I bought a pair of (awesome) trousers from a brand that likes to put its name in big on their clothes. I liked the trousers, but I wished the name wasn’t on it in those big letters. Like a week ago I bought the Dutch ELLE and read an article about how brands don’t put their trademark on their clothes anymore.
Somehow I follow fashion, it seems!
The article said that wearing brands in an obvious way was luxury, but now things are changing. You can’t recognize a Chanel bag or a Hermès scarf at first sight anymore. But you can still recognize them if you look at details, the finish, the style, etc. New luxury is subtle. New luxury is humble. In times of money crises it makes sense that luxury is no longer just wearing a brand, and showing you had the money to buy it, but wearing good, beautiful, well-made clothes from a certain brand. I like this tendency. We shouldn’t wear brands, but clothes. It makes more sense to be proud of your well-made, long-lasting clothes than to be proud of the name in huge letters on your T-shirts.
 From here.From here.
Both Louis Vuitton prints. Compare these, and understand the new tendency of silent luxury.
Thanks to ELLE.