Outfits that Carrie Bradshaw would like too

No series to this day, has managed to be as fashion-forward as Sex and the City.  Even, long after the last series, I found myself, picking up a piece of clothing, thinking if Carrie would wear it. Time has moved on and my style has (sadly?) become down to earth and “grown-up” – and more black and grey. One of my friend recently even pointed out that I’ve become much “more elegant and far less crazy”. Gone are the days, when I spent hours going through mountains of vintage clothing and at designer markets. I still have hope that they’ll return somehow when al the essays and exams are written but until then, I thought it was time for a little collection of my best Carrie-Outfits. Which is your favourite?

IMG_5069IMG_5851OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIMG_0556IMG_5036Carrie Outfitcarrie.preview

Not quite as stylish as Carrie in the film but at least the colours are similar.IMG_3545Carrie_red scarf41505c1fff5c12185e3362655f49e0a3Carrie dressSeason-SixCarrie-dots-outfitIMG_3210Carrie skirtCarrie Outfit

Photo Credit: HBO

Photo Credit: HBO

 

Photo Credit: HBO

Photo Credit: HBO

Newspaper dress

Newspaper dress

 

Things I hate about other women*

1) “My boyfriend thinks” “my boyfriend says”, my boyfriend always does” – please get your own opinion.

2) Talking about what food is healthy and how much fat  or calories something contains. – I don’t care and I am going to eat it anyway.

3) Talking about period symptoms –  why some women think that this is even remotely interesting, will always remain a mystery to me.

4) “Unconsciously” flirting with someone else’s boyfriend and then denying it. We all know where the line between “friendly” and “flirty” is. Stay on the right side.

5) “I-am-soooo-incredibly-sexy-dressing” – Keep your pop-star-stage-outfits at home and please note that what may work for Beyonce on stage does not make you look sexier in  real life. If men want to see someone dressed as a lap-dance-girl they can pay for it.

6) “You know, the girl with the red hair, who is the sister of … and went to this uni” – I don’t know her and I don’t care.

7) “Ahhh Aurelia, HOW have you been. I have not seen you in ages….” hug, kiss, kiss. let’s take a photo together – Cheeeeese. – We said “hi” in the hallway once. I. do.not. know. you.

8) Facebook pictures that are close-ups of someone’s cleavage who does not have boobs in real life.

9)  Photos of girls with hashtags/tags on Instagram/Twitter that read like the description of a porn star/ lap-dancer.

10) Constant complaining about men: We all complain about the opposite sex once in a while but if there is nothing good about men, maybe you should rethink your sexual orientation.

*that I sometimes commit myself :-)

My Kate-Moss-skinny jeans

Kate-Moss-Skinny_jeans Skinny jeans are a misleading name for a piece of clothing that usually does not make you look skinny – unless your are one of the these “stick-women”, we all hate. The popularity of jeans was somewhat always a little bit of a mystery to me: apart from the new jeggings, they are not particularly comfortable, torturous to buy (who hasn’t despaired in front of an evil changing room mirror, floor covered in jeans that all have the wrong fit, colour or price) and compared to other trousers or skirts they are often quite expensive. Yes, they never go out of fashion but this is only because everybody wears them, which makes them probably the most boring fashion-item of the century. They are not particularly good for the environment either. The manufacturing process requires volcanic pumice stones  have to be mined and shipped all over the world and hundreds of litres of water  are used for the “washed out” look.  Apparently, the Levi’s plant outside El Paso, TX, uses 15% of the city’s water supply and this is just one plant. As if that’s not enough the dye used for denim is also highly toxic. All of this for item of clothing that often didn’t even last me for a year?

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Shopping Guide: Androgynous Fashion

House_of_Fraser_Products

1. Masculine Cut Coat 2. Michael Kors Boyfriend Blazer 3. Michael Kors men’s watch 4. Citizen Strap Watch 5. Religion Temple Trousers 6. Kookai Check Pant 7. Hackett Men’s Shirt 8. KG Brogues

Gender-Bending is nothing new to fashion but is not always easy to pull-off and the rules change – recently against boyfriend jeans. This little shopping guide helps to find the basics for an androgynous look at House of Fraser.

Nothing is more versatile than these slimming black trousers (5) from London-based fashion label, Religion, or the black blazer from Michael Kors (2) – both shouldn’t be missing in any women’s closet. Men’s watches are great accessories (4), (3) to give outfits a masculine twist and can be combined with different styles. A true essential for a the androgynous style is a men’s shirt, which is worth spending a little bit more on. You will wear and love this for years to come, so dig deep into your wallet. Genuine men’s shirts are often of better quality than women’s, so don’t buy a shirt that was made for women with a “male cut”. Best is,  to go for a traditional British clothing brand like Hackett (7) and buy a men’s shirt in the smallest size. Shirts with patterns or colour are often more versatile because they can be worn for all kinds of occasions from breakfast in bed to a walk on a beach in Italy.

Shoes are another great accessory to give outfits a new twist and an elegant replacement for pumps in the office. Shoes in a male style can be used to dress down girly dresses to make them look more grown-up and can look very sexy if matched with a figure-hugging suit for dinner. This pair from KG (8) looks good on every woman but there are plenty more good options for men’s shoes at House of Fraser. Let’s not forget a coat for winter: for coat it is often better to take a women’s coat with a masculine cut rather than a men’s coat as they are usually too big for women’s shoulders. A light colour, like this (1) coat in camel makes it look a little bit more feminine to strike an ideal gender balance.

PS: A few of these items would make great Valentine’s gifts that can easily be borrowed and re-purposed. Something to keep in mind when picking out something for the loved-one :-).

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European Inspiration – a -short film -watch, vote and win a trip to Brussels!

One rarely reads, watches or hears anything good about the EU these days, especially not in the UK, which is also the reason why around 50% of UK citizens would vote for an exit in a referendum. The media takes a very narrow view of Europe concentrating only on financial troubles and completely overlooking the great culture this beautiful piece of the world has. The European Economic and Social Commitee’s Video challenge was a good opportunity to focus on the brighter sides of the European Union and think about the positive aspects of being a European citizen. I’ve made this video with fellow blogger Gregor in which we interviewed a few Austrians on their experiences with the EU and how they benefited from being European. I hope this is inspirational for a few of you and as always, I appreciate any comments and I hope that you will VOTE for our video in the competition ( which will also put you in for a chance to win a trip to Brussels for two!)

Androgynous Fashion: Boyfriend look without boyfriend

Boyfriend Look

The gem of my closet: a men’s Cerutti 1881 suit jacket that I found on a fleamarket in Paris.

Androgynous style has been there for a while. Coco Chanel already tailored men’s jackets to suit her, more recently Katie Holmes walked around with men’s jeans and even more recently unisex models like Andrej Pejic confused catwalk audiences all over the world.

My body is definitely more on the feminine  side yet I often find myself drawn to wrapping it in men’s clothes. They are often of better quality and made to last longer than women’s clothes.There are more classics to choose from because men’s fashion doesn’t invent itself every two seconds like women’s fashion does.

But as a single girl is it such a good idea to actually own clothes made for the opposite sex? Sloppy T-shirts and baggy jeans will hardly seem attractive to men, who tend to think that you a) are actually wearing your boyfriend’s clothes or b) you want to be one of the “guys”. Compliments generally come from men who are gay and planning their wardrobe and straight guys don’t even find the advantage that I could lend them my men’s shirt convincing. (“I can’t wear the same shirt you are wearing all the time”. “But it is a MEN’s shirt”)

men's jacket

I love the clean fit.

men's shoes

Marc O’Polo shoes

Collar

Detail: collar

Not that this has bothered me too much. My collection has progressed to a complete Outfit with men’s trousers, shirt (2), shoes (2), watch and even a mock men’s boxershorts from American Apparel but I am still single, so don’t listen to me.

However if you’re just interested in looking good in men’s clothes, here are my recommendations:

It’s important to balance the look with feminine accessories and choose only things that fit your body shape to some degree (Since I realised that boyfriend jeans don’t look good on people with short and thick legs like me, they’ve disappeared in the darkest corner of my closet only to be used for wall-painting). The boyfriend should look a little bit oversized but don’t exaggerate. If you look like you have to borrow your overweight uncle’s clothes, you went too far. Vintage shops and flea markets are usually a good idea: they often have amazing quality clothing.

red-dress

worn with a red dress in front of our blue door.

Graphics on the Financial Crisis

The documentary Inside Job by the other school of economics about the conflicts of interested between the finance industry, the government, academics and regulators  features a few interesting info graphics to illustrate the dimension of the financial crisis and its consequences.Graphic_Hours_worked_in_us

The sharp increase in hours worked in the US since 1980s could be a sign that Americans up their game to compete against emerging economies but also shows somewhat of a decline in life-quality.

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Frieze London 2012 in pictures

Once a year the art crowd flocks to London for the ‘London Fashion Week’ for galleries, collectors, artists and nobobodies like me, who take an interest in art. This is my second year of Frieze and I already feel much more comfortable with the process that comes with it: queuing in front of the wood-box-box-office, which looks like a bad installation in itself, getting into a chat with an artist, who is disappointed that I am not a millionaire-art collector and the ridiculous bag-search to make sure you don’t carry any black paint for spontaneous vandalizations.

But once you have splurged a week’s grocery shop on a ticket and entered the holy plastic tents, the fun starts. Endless gallery stalls with important names stretch along the neon-lit corridors and display everything and everybody that matters in art at the moment. You can get into a nauseated by the observation of a photo collage about a performance featuring mustard, ketchup sausages and a human penis (not photographed, because I am nice),  be impressed by a Keith Haring -esque ‘monument’ (picture 2), gain some life-guidance (3) or soothe your eyes with the bluest of blue (4 and 5).

2

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Pointless lists

I like lists. To-do lists, fact-lists, top-10 lists, lists of things you have to do before you die. Here are a few of my rather pointless lists.

Things I like about London

1) the pubs

2) Naan bread in supermarkets

3) the fact that they put stuffing in sandwiches

4) that you can buy a big bunch of flowers on one of the markets for less than £1.50

5) the parks (favourites: Hamsted Heath, Victoria Park, Regent’s Park, Battersea Park)

6) how London looks when the sun comes out after the rain

7)the growing coffee-shop culture (favourites: shoreditch grind, fix, coffee-cart, benugo)

8) the galleries in East London

9) Regent’s Canal

10) Cyder, Cidre, Cider or whatever you want to call it

11) the bookshop in Somerset house

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Currency-Gamble: Mango-dress €13 more expensive in the UK

Shopping-Economics

 

 

Popular high street fashion stores like Mango, Zara and H&M can be found all over the world and are generally affordable. The pricing of the clothes is adapted to the country to match the competition and be in relation to what the chain store has to pay in wages and taxes. But does the management get this right?

A recent visit to the high-street within the Eurozone and the UK revealed that Mango  takes advantages of the different currency in Britain. The Spanish clothing chain sells a dress for €29,99 in the Eurozone, which is £34,99 in the UK. It may have escaped the pricing managers attention: but the pound Sterling is  stronger than the Euro, which means that the same garment is a hefty €43,70 in the UK (if converted back to Euros).

Is it more expensive to  run the shops in the UK? No, not really:  the minimum wage in the UK is £6.19 (€7.73) per hour compared to €7.89 in Germany. The taxes or electricity is about the same and there is no other reason for MANGO to make their clothes more expensive in the UK unless the clothing chain he victim of a not-know Channel mafia coup that charges €13 per item to be shipped across the Channel or maybe MANGO just wants to express their sympathy for poor Eurozone countries?

Screenshots taken from Online Stores

 

While MANGO is probably the most exaggerated, ZARA is less abusive towards fashion victims: a black dress with leather appliques is £39.99 and €49.95 in the UK and Austria respectively. This is pretty much accurate to the exchange rate. It seems to be one of ZARA’s policies to just take 10 off the price. A TRF Shirt is €39.95 in Austria and £29.99 (€37.49), which actually makes it cheaper in the UK than in Austria.