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Of green, white and gold.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011   |   2 comments

I cannot for the life of me understand the Union Jack as design icon. I see the original incarnation popping up every so often on doormats and in various pink and pastel colourways on soft furnishings, but I just don't see the aesthetic appeal.

Anyway. The Irish tricolour doesn't usually come in for the same kind of love from the creative community. Prada, however, have bucked the trend and saw fit to pay homage to the national flag/Offaly hurling team with these in their SS11 collection.


I'm not going to be running out to buy a pair anytime soon, but still. Nice to see the flag/Offaly gettin' some love, yo.


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Ikea do Cath Kidston on the cheap

Monday, February 21, 2011   |   0 comments



This (above) is Cath Kidston's Classic Rose bed linen. It's very pretty, and would be an ideal bedding choice for lovers of country or floral or shabby chic style.

It's also expensive: think 70ish Eurobux for a Cath Kidston duvet cover, plus €12-15 per pillowcase. Ouchie, sez your wallet.

But before you sadly resign yourself to never having a bed that looks like a rosebush threw up all over it, allow me to show you this (below).


It's an affordable damn-near doppelgänger from Ikea (legend has it that the Rosali fabric was actually designed for everyone's favourite Swedish furniture overlords by Kidston herself.) Although it's not listed on the Ikea Ireland or UK sites, there were plenty of duvet sets in blue or white colourways in Ikea Wembley when I picked myself up a duvet cover and four pillowcases for £20.42.

Something to keep an eye out for on your next meatballs run!


Images via This Charming Wedding and Kaboodle respectively

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Baby it's (still) cold outside

Friday, February 18, 2011   |   2 comments


It never ceases to amaze me that the stylists cool kids who keep fashion diaries or get snapped by street style photographers don't seem to feel the cold. There could be several feet of snow on the ground but our intrepid fashionistas would still be out posing in pager-bag waisted shorts with bare legs or knee-high socks and a sheer floaty top, doing a pidgeon toed pose in impossibly high heeled sandals while pouting/looking coy/gazing thoughtfully into the middle distance.

Pictures of stylists cool kids wearing coats or closed-toe shoes and looking stylish and warm are much harder to come by, but here are a few of my favourites.


{via Grazia

{source: The Sartorialist}

{Annmarie O'Connor in Joanne Hynes, I think! Source: The Style Scout

{via Elle UK}

{source: The Sartorialist}

 {via Elle UK}

{via Lookbook.nu

{source: The Sartorialist}

{via College Candy

{source: The 10 Cent Designer}

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Talon-tastic Thursday: Turbo minty fresh with Topshop

Thursday, February 17, 2011   |   3 comments



I took myself off to the Haymarket Hotel today to attend the launch of Marks & Spencer's 2011 Spa Collections ranges, be treated to a fish pedicure, and sit down with Tess Daly for a few minutes/be overwhelmed by her gorgeousness.

This here's what I wore on my fingertips: two coats of Topshop's soft minty Gone Fishing topped with Seche Vite. This was £5, so by Topshop's reckoning that's probably - what? €30?

Cheeky feckers.


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Owner emigration forces reluctant sale.

Friday, February 11, 2011   |   3 comments



Since we only have one dedicated parking space outside the gaff in Londonland and driving over here gives me palpatations (and not in a good way), I decided that it would be sensible to sell my car. 

Coming to that realisation was horrible. Painful. I got a huge lump in my throat that I thought I'd choke on when that head-over-heart decision was made, because I really flipping loved that car.

The Polo wasn't actually my first car, but I think of it as my first and of the Punto That We Shall Mention No More as an unfortunate blip on my car ownership record. I used to spend hours on end on VW enthusiast forums deciding on small DIY mods for The Polo that I could do with my own two hands.

The first thing I did was replace the rear lights: the standard lights on this Mark 4 model are multi-coloured affairs with
orange stripes, and I knew that the car would look completely amazeballs with the solid red rear light casings that came on the next model up.

You can imagine the strange looks that went around the office when I took delivery of a pair of Mark 5 Polo lights from a scrappie in Donegal.



I also switched out the orange indicators for clear versions and the orange side repeaters for crystal clear ones, got some aero wipers on, and added rear mudflaps. I had two boxes of specialist car valeting gear from Meguiars and Autoglym which were bought especially for The Polo. I used to regularly do things like clay the car to get rid of contaminents from the paintwork and knowingly referred to Halfords as Halfrauds. Funds were never going to permit any lowering or new wheels or alloys or a 16v rear bumper, but this summer I was planning a few more small mods like adding front mudflaps, replacing the rear badge, and maybe adding a rear roof lip spoiler.

There is absolutely no question in my mind that this car is superior in looks and performance to others of a similiar age so I wasn't surprised in the least when Dad found an enthusiastic buyer at close to asking price for The Polo during the week.

I was very, very sad, though.



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Talon-tastic Thursday: In your satin tights / fighting for your rights / and the old red, white and bluuue...

Thursday, February 10, 2011   |   4 comments


She was one of my very favourite TV characters when I was growing up in the '80s, but I always had a problem with the fact that Wonder Woman's transformation from Diana Prince to eponymous superhero involved taking off her specs and letting down her hair.

That was well before I actually wore glasses, but it was my first remembered brush with the celluloid cliché of nerdy/bookish/reserved female characters removing their glasses and shaking loose their buns/sleekifying their formerly fuzzy manes to gasps of "But - you're beautiful!" and it's gotten right on my wick ever since.

Still, it didn't stop me DIYing a Wonder Woman costume last Halloween, or accidentally paying homage to her with the manicure you're about to see.

I was originally going for matching red lips and tips, so slung on a coat of Essie 'Wife Goes On' to roughly co-ordinate with my Rimmel 'Be Bold' pout. A couple of hours later, I was fed up reapplying my lippie and bored of my plain nails. I pulled out some nail art pens and

(imagine me spinning around here, singing the Wonder Woman theme tune as my transformation from a glasses-girl to Hot Babe takes place)

BAM! 



The white half moons on red remind me of her boots, and I packed the WAH-inspired accent thumbnail with as many teeny polka dots as I could manage for a true Ben-Day pop art effect to pay homage to her comic book beginnings.

Sure, I could have done stars and stripes and the WW logo and the Lasso of Truth and all that jazz, but I wanted something that was a bit less obvious. 


What do you think of them?

In other Wonder Woman news: MAC's Wonder Woman collection went on counter in the States today, so I'll definitely have a goo at it while I'm in New York. I don't think my wallet's in too much danger from it, though.

With the exception of the nail polishes, the packaging is just pure minging to my eyes!


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Something for the weekend: a little light reading.

Saturday, February 05, 2011   |   0 comments


I thought it was fixed, but my poor laptop is getting sicker by the minute. In addition to randomly turning itself off and then refusing to switch back on, its screen is now on the way out.

Sadface.

At least Himself's iPad, which has become my back-up device, is good for reading online magazines. That's good because it is absolutely no use for working on, so I shall be flicking through these mostly interiors numbers on the iPad while keening over the smouldering remains of my clapped out laptop over the weekend. 








There are lots of ridiculously involved American crafty-type projects in all of these, so best not peruse them if you're feeling a bit inadequate about your skillz or commitment to your to do list.

And no, the last choice there does not mean I have "news".

It just means that I like to be passremarkable about the weddings of strangers and admire nice tablesettings.


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