The literal Jimi Hendrix Experience!

11 Oct

It was a sunny Sunday in the big smoke (ironically), not content with staying in, I went out with a good friend to spend the rest of the day in the sixties…

We headed over to the Handel House Museum which coincidentally houses its offices in the flat itself that Jimi lived in with his English girlfriend in 1968, 23 Brook Street.

The exhibition, though small in size was in fact large with memorabilia and history. Taking in the life of the pioneer of a unique sound that millions have tried to reproduce since, it was hard not to shake your head and sigh in disbelief at being face-to-face with his death certificate and the famous jacket (below) and hat worn in so many iconic images.

I rarely linger in an exhibition unless I deem the material on display worthy of attention, I couldn’t take my eyes of everything. There were various cd-walkmans dotted around with rare recordings and prolific tracks that allowed you to take in the experience with more than one sense.

Unfortunately I had found out about this event slightly too late as all of the subsequent little extra viewings and events, including the opening up of his actual flat two floors above the exhibition, had all passed in September (the 40th Anniversary of his death) and early October. However, I would still wholeheartedly suggest visiting if you even have an ounce of rock in your veins…truely a legend…

For extra information on the exhibition check out the Facebook group and the Handel House website.

Links:

MacBook de los Muertos

23 Sep

So i’m sure you’ve seen me harp on about my love of the Day of the Dead style and celebrations…what better way to add to my obsession than to adorn the very computer I am broadcasting this from in such finery! 😀

Etsy, the online treasure trove of all that is quirky, crafty, kitsch and quaint will sometimes throw out an item that you just can’t say no to, even if you favourite it for another look at a later time (a technique i’m finding helps with impulse buyers such as myself; favourite/bookmark an item, if you still like and want it that much after a few days and you can afford said item within reason, then go ahead!!). I’d been looking at vinyl stickers for my MacBook for a while now but didn’t like the ones that cover the entire lid in one sheet. This sticker is like a stencil that you have to lay on top and carefully apply like a an intricate decal or something similar…?

The outcome is far more detailed and I like running my hand over the texture of it!….I’m weird, I know!

This work of art was snapped up from the guys at Beepart who have quite a few vinyl stickers ready to adorn any trendy’s laptops and walls alike! So pop on over….the designs will simply get stuck on you….*giggles*

I’m debating taking off the nose part of the stencil and having the apple as the acting nose…I don’t know…any ideas?

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Somewhere over the Rainbow…cake!

15 Sep

Sooooo as promised, I delved in to the ‘A Zombie Ate My Cupcake’ book (https://misswoo.wordpress.com/2010/09/11/dead-fun-baking/) and tackled what I believe to be the easiest recipe of the bunch. Just to ease me in and all that 😉

Below are some snappy-snaps of my take on the Lily Vanilli originals….and I happen to think they came out pretty damn good! They taste great and look even better, I completely recommend you give them a try when you have a coupla hours to spare..

Nom nom nom nom…..!!

Día de los Muertos

13 Sep

…or Day of the Dead for those of us who don’t speak Spanish!

It’s essentially a Latin American, Brazilian, Spanish and Mexican tradition with its roots dating right back to the Aztecs. The holiday sees the gathering of family, friends and communities to remember and pray for their family members and loved ones who have died. The celebration falls in line with the Catholic holidays of All Saint’s Day (Nov 1st) and All Soul’s Day (Nov 2nd). Although this around the time of Halloween, the two events are not related.

It is traditional for people to celebrate and honour the deceased by making gifts such as sugar skulls (left), favourite foods and drinks as well as reams of flowers and photographs. These are then placed at headstones or in small shrines at home. It is a cause to celebrate the lives of those who have passed away; many parties, carnivals and dancing add the chance to bring people together on this special occasion.

I personally love the tradition and think it is a wonderful way to remember those you miss without feeling sombre. To celebrate what was good about them and their lives with a smile on your face, to me, seems far more respectful and can actually help with the sense of loss…

I have yet to attend an actual Día de los Muertos event but will seek to find something either in the UK this year or go to Mexico myself next year!  Please do contact me if you know of anything planned at all! 🙂

A shrine with artefacts which reflect some of their passions during their life.


Candles placed at a shrine at night. Pretty and moving.

As I have become interested in the topic more, I had a look around to see what literature I could find to help further my knowledge on the topic. I came across this book (left) ‘The Days of the Dead: Mexico’s Festival of Communication with the Departed’ by Rosalind Rosoff Beimler, which reviews are saying is very educational. I shall review it once it arrives and i’ve thumbed through.

I also liked the theatrics, craft, creativity and colour the event is themed with so ordered this book also which will hopefully keep me amused on a rainy day or prepare me for my own Día de los Muertos celebrations! Prepare to see future posts of the fruits of my labour!!

‘Day of the Dead Crafts: More than 24 Projects That Celebrate Dia De Los Muertos’ by Kerry Arquette, Andrea Zocchi, and Jerry Vigil.

I hope this little outline of the event helps you to understand what Día de los Muertos is all about and if you do know more than I do, I welcome any comments or additional information!

Who says there’s no life after death? 😉

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Happy Birthday Mario!!!

13 Sep

OMG Nintendo fanboys/girls!

It’s Mario’s 25th brithday today!!! As a MASSIVE fan of the ‘tendo, I feel that I should be somehow sending the little dungaree sporting fat Italian a birthday card!

If there’s one thing i’d say to him, it’s thank you.

Thank you for being there when I was a kid. Thank you for helping me form solid bonds with some of my closest friends and thank you for helping to look at life as a series of green tubes leading to other levels…

1-up to you sir! 🙂

Links:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/video-games/7999054/Super-Mario-celebrates-25th-birthday.html

The Tattoo Chronicles

13 Sep

Keep an eye out!

For the fans of the ‘Miami Ink’‘LA Ink’ shows or even just the tattooed goddess herself; Kat Von D is back with her latest book‘The Tattoo Chronicles’, due to be released on 26th October this year.

A no-holds-barred account of a crucial (both personally and professionally) year in the life of Kat Von D taken from her diary entries. The book exposes the good, the bad, and the ugly – including her feelings about her fame, family, love life, friends, and fans.

The book contains tons of Kat’s images, from sketches of her tattoos to the finished works, and candid shots of her unusual personal collections – all photographed by Kat herself!

She says of the book on her Myspace:

“I gotta be honest with you, and say that this book has been by far the most emotionally invested project I’ve ever taken on, and really hope everyone loves it.”

All I can say is I’m looking forward to dipping in to the life of one of my idols as I get my next tattoo inked!

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Join the Cult…

12 Sep

Book Review: “Cult Street Wear” by Josh Sims

I am an absolute fangirl when it comes to Shepard Fairey or as some of you might know him better ‘Obey’. His artwork is completely unique and he has developed a style so simple yet so breathtaking, I nearly died when I caught a glimpse of some of it on a trip to Amsterdam earlier this year! I shant go into detail about his works right now as it laid out in this book but I urge you to familiarise yourself with his works and how he came to be. It was glimpsing his name and many other brands I have come to love not only from a design perspective but also an aesthetic and lifestyle angle that made me stop and pay attention to this Cult bible!

The book explores a broad spectrum of street wear, showcasing everything from marketing strategy to the people behind the brands. A visual catalogue of information, it’s aim is to educate those new to the phenomena that these are more than just clothing items being sold, but a lifestyle. A choice made by people to wear these brands which actively speak to others. Josh Sims muses upon the timeline of the street wear movement and scrutinises the creative integrity of the brands and products themselves.

Those of you already familiar with Cult brands will recognise some, if not all of the names covered in this image-rich soft back. Categorised into ‘Streetwear’, ‘Sportswear’ and ‘Workwear’ the following brands each claim six pages (or three double page spreads) to encapsulate the pioneering beating heart and impeccably graphic designed soul of each brand:

  • Addict
  • A Bathing Ape
  • Billionaire Boys CLub
  • Evisu
  • Fuct
  • Goodenough
  • Maharishi
  • Mambo
  • Mecca
  • Mooks
  • Neighborhood
  • Obey
  • One True Saxon
  • Stussy
  • The Hundreds
  • Triple 5 Soul
  • X-Large
  • Zoo York
  • Adidas
  • Burton
  • Converse
  • Fred Perry
  • Lacoste
  • Nike
  • Puma
  • Vans
  • Ben Davis
  • Carhartt
  • Dickies
  • Red Wing
  • Spiewak
  • Timberland

To see some of the pages in more detail, bounce over to the publisher’s website for more visual mastication.

At only £19.95, a true gem to add to my ever-growing collection of lifestyle, design and art books which could warrant a library card in itself! Follow the link to Waterstones for your copy now!

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The Truly Wicked one that bagged my heart

12 Sep

Ever since I can remember  I have been obsessed with bags…

The filling of them, the carrying of them to places that don’t require one, the collecting of them, the outfits built around them, the rare ones, the statement ones, the vintage materials, the freshly bought bag feeling and the excitement of transferring the past from one bag into the future of the new.

A friend of mine came back from Vancouver last year sporting an amazing little bag that had been hand made by a lady she befriended whilst living there, Rachel Caffrey. It was black with red piping, vintage style shape and a Zombie/Horror themed material that emblazoned both sides. I was instantly ‘bag envious’. Some months went by and I was ambling around Camden Market, specifically the store Black Rose, when I spotted my next bag. Sat there, all glittery and retro looking, with it’s Day Of The Dead skulls material in bright colours (a theme i’m fast becoming obsessed by), fur interior and desirable detailing. I HAD to have it!

I wasn’t so flush the day that I saw it, but I made sure to return often to check it was still there for a day when I could justify spending a pretty penny on such a pretty bag. Plus it was a one-off, that made me want it all the more!

So more months had passed and I was visiting Camden again with my friend (whom I originally mentioned with her Zombie bag) and there it was, sat there on the shelf in the shop, with it’s ‘come-hither’ glitter. I had just come in to some money and decided the day had come to put a smile on my face. I picked it up with a Cheshire Cat grin and took it to the till. The lady who works there rejoiced at my purchase decision as she too loved it and said it was by far her favourite of the bunch.

My friend was looking at the bag with me when she realised that it was a ‘Wicked Purse’ made exclusively by her friend Rachel in Vancouver!

She was happy with her fond memories and I was more than happy with my new Wicked purse.

Clean, robust stitching across the fabric which I have been told is also used by Rachel’s husband in his car interior customisations which he does for a living!

Super soft fur interior with fabric pockets echoed from the front panel material.

Wicked Purses for sure!

Cute skull zip detail.

You would hardly believe this bag was completely hand made!

My current bag set-up. 😀 (Purse and compact mirror both from Black Rose)

Links:

‘Resin’-ating Love

12 Sep

Being a lover of original design and use of materials, I have become quite the Etsy.com addict! I trawl the pages for hours taking in all the quirky ideas, one-off designs and up-cycling of once useless bric-a-brac. This time I was instantly drawn to the work of Par Amour, a colab of tattooist/illustrator Dustin Lucas and graphic designer Keri Newton based in Augusta, Georgia. Their Etsy store showcases their talents in various forms including art prints and hand made jewellery.

I browsed their store and found two resin bangles which I fell in love with instantly! One of birds in flight and the other of a winter scene, detailed right down to the deer tracks in the snow. They were sent to me in the cutest packaging i’ve witnessed in a long time; black tissue paper, business card and sticker all wrapped up in a gold bow. Opening my purchase was an experience all in itself! I am a big fan of attention to detail and these guys don’t falter here that’s for sure!

As for the design and make-up of the bangles, the body of the bracelet is clear resin with a printed ‘scene’ on acetate dropped into the resin during the setting process. The overall effect is bespoke, modern yet minimal with the power to provoke compliments upon wearing them out and about!

I urge you to check them out, their store loot is constantly changing….i’d know, i’m always looking!

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‘Dead’ fun baking!

11 Sep

Book Review: Lily Vanilli’sA Zombie Ate My Cupcake!

So I was doing my by-monthly float around Waterstones bookshop, placing a reserve for my copy of Steven Fry’s forthcoming memoirs (eeek can’t wait to read that juicy one!) when I saw this book literally leap out at me from a themed book table of ‘Cupcake’ titles. Amidst all the kitsch, quaint, chintz and pretty, lay this beautiful (in my oppinion!) book about delicious yet gruesome cake making! 😀

It took two turns of the pages before I clutched it to my chest and exclaimed “I”M HAVING IT!” in my best spoilt brat voice! My boyfriend looked at me approvingly for once at one of my impulse purchases (a look seldom reserved for my shopping habits) knowing that the results from this book would benefit him and he also thought the cakes looked pretty damn gory!

As soon as I reached home I was curled up with a cuppa to pour over the rich photography, imaginative use of ingredients, gory aesthetics and brilliant illustration by Paul Parker.

Below are some of the delightful images/creations taken from the book:

Some of Paul Parker’s illustrations you can expect…

This book is a great gift idea for anyone you know with a penchant for gore, a go-to for your Halloween party or for your ‘coffee table’ collection. I’m currently gathering ingredients to have a go at re-creating some of the recipes! Heads up though, these ingredients aren’t entirely readily available in your local supermarket but can easily be simplified for kids or a tighter budget…

Happy Baking! 😀

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