Sunday, 29 May 2011

Literary Style

My poor old laptop broke last week, but fortunately for me, my boyfriend kindly installed internet on his "writing computer" -a giant machine of yesteryear- which revealed to be much faster than my tired portable. It's not so bad since I now spoil less time online (its setting is not the most comfortable), and I haven't lost much in the wreck thanks to my last minute file transfer; also, as you will notice, I can now access Polyvore without problems.

So, to get to the point, today's long overdue installment of Literary Style is on Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises. It was one of the first books I had in mind when I started the (still short/slowly expanding) series but I couldn't remember whether it featured actual descriptions of dress or if I had been picturing Brett to be quite stylish; it made me very happy to realize it was actually suitable for this column when Lin suggested it.
The Sun Also Rises
via UBOParentheses

"Brett was damned good-looking. She wore a slipover jersey sweater and a tweed skirt, and her hair was brushed back like a boy's. She started all that. She was built with curves like the hull of a racing yacht, and you missed none of it with that wool jersey." (22)
"He was standing with Brett, who was sitting on a high stool, her legs crossed. She had no stockings on. [...] Brett gestured at him from the bar with her cigarette-holder and wrinkled the corners of her eyes." (78)
"'You are a lovely lady, Brett. Where did you get that hat?' 'Chap bought it for me. Don't you like it?' [...] Brett pulled the felt hat down far over one eye and smiled out from under it." (79)

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Making my heart sing

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Things I enjoy at the moment (it's a quite long and eclectic list, be prepared!):

-Overcoming fears. I sung karaoke for the first time last week, and although I was very nervous at first, I ended up enjoying it very much. I think that the contrast between being almost terrified to sing in public and hearing a song that I like makes the feeling of accomplishment all the better.

-Salade niçoise, with tuna instead of anchovies, and sundried black olives instead of capers. Enough said, miam!

-Seeing classic movies that I kept putting off watching, namely The Big Sleep and Cat On A Hot Tin Roof. After a nasty virus took over my computer (and my throat) over the weekend, I finally got around getting the right cord for my dvd player (I used to find all my movies online, hum-hum). How have I lived without a tv-dvd set all that time? At the moment, it still feels quite luxurious.

-That's not something I'm really enjoying, but I'm slowly wrapping my head around wearing less pointy, more 'sensible' shoes. I have mentioned before that I danced ballet for many years, and I'm now paying the price for dancing on un-healed injuries. The only way to correct my foot now is through surgery, so I'm doing my best not to make things worse. Were pointe shoes really worth it? I'm not so sure anymore. Take care of your feet before it's too late!

-Buying records on an impulse. I'm so happy I finally got Nico's Chelsea Girl!

-I just finished F. Scott Fitzgerald's Six Tales of the Jazz Age and Other Stories and I highly recommed it. If you only have a few stories to read from it, you should have a look at "The Camel's Back", "The Lees of Happiness", "Hot and Cold Blood" and "Gretchen's Forty Winks" (actually, read the whole book, the stories are all very good!). You all know I have a soft spot for the 1920s' culture, but besides that, I found that so many things on which F.S.F. comments still ring very true today.

What's been making your heart sing as of late?

The Look

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I have really been into watching Bacall-Bogart movies as of late. I had been admiring Lauren Bacall for quite a long time (Humphrey Bogart as well, but you already know that!), ever since I saw her in a glossy Paris Match book which included a piece about her relationship with Bogart, but I had never gotten around to actually watch any of her movies. Fortunately, I was not disappointed: what transpired from the photos and the text was magnified by seeing her on the screen. Upon my first introduction to her, when I was about 14, she incarnated everything I aspired to be. She seemed sure of herself, confident, the incarnation of cool. I later learnt that she was extremely shy and nervous when she made her first movie, but that makes me like her even more, and it proves what a good actress she was and is.

So far, my two favourite movies featuring the pair are Key Largo and Dark Passage:

-I found Key Largo particularly interesting for its storyline as well as the way tension is held throughout the narrative. The acting is more subtle than what I was used to, from American cinema from this era anyway, and I really appreciated the way sections of the story are implied, and not announced to you point blank.
-My interest in Dark Passage is more due to the filming techniques used to convey the story than the intricacy of the storyline itself. Yes, the storyline is thrilling, but as an afterthought, I was more impressed by the camera play and how part of the movie is seen through the main character's eyes.

I highly recommend both, as well as To Have and Have Not. I am yet to see The Big Sleep, has any of you seen it? I'm very much looking forward to watching it, but I keep putting it off since after that, I'll be done watching all the films featuring both Bacall and Bogart. Oh well, I'll just have to find another cinematographic obsession!

What have you been watching as of late?

Photos via here.

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Irene & Irene Vintage

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As of late, I have been telling you I was quite busy with a little project. Well, it probably won't surprise you to learn that I'm opening my very own vintage shop on etsy, Irene & Irene Vintage (it is named after my two grandmothers!).
I thought I would wait until I had listed all my items to share this with you, but since I have already made a few sales overnight, I figured I would tell you as quickly as possible.
I am thinking about making occasional shop updates on this blog while of course keeping talking about all the things that catch my eye and interest. I don't want to overload you with shop-related information, so please feel free to let me know whether it interests you or not so I can see how to dose it.
Oh, and one last thing: if you happen to buy something in the shop, please let me know that you read this blog so I can send you a little extra something with your purchase. I'll be constantly adding new items, so keep checking back to see what's new!

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Grey, blue and new.

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Full-time sartorial inspiration: blue, grey, shirts and high-waisted bottoms. The first photo, by Jacques Henri Lartigue, is one I never tire of. I especially enjoy how similar, but incredibly different the girl is to to the three men in front of her. They wear hats and carry bags but represent very different ideas through their appearance, the old and the new.

P.S. I'm finally done with school for the semester, and have been working quite hard on a few projects- but more to come on that in a few days. I am currently having problems with Polyvore, so I will have to postpone the Literary Style posts for a longer time than I had planned to. Worse comes to worst, I'll simply do my collages by hand, oh well!

Photos: 1 (J. H. Lartigue), 2, 3 (K. Hyams), 4.