Mark Zuckerberg wears the same t-shirt every day: I think he’s missing out on the joys of frivolity

Mark Zuckerberg wears the same colour T shirt every day. Why? He says, ‘I really want to clear my life to make it so that I have to make as few decisions as possible about anything except how to best serve this community.’

In short, to allow for maximum simplicity and clarity in his life in order to dedicate as much of his time as possible to helping others. Jesus would approve.

Mark Zuckerberg wears the same style t-shirt every day

Mark Zuckerberg wears the same style t-shirt every day (Picture: NYT)

Every minute Mark Zuckerberg selflessly plucks from his grooming schedule is a minute we all benefit from – had he been a little more fastidious about his wardrobe in his youth, say, spent ten minutes getting dressed instead of one, who knows how long we might have had to wait for him to cast aside his mortal vices in favour of connecting us all to the people whom we didn’t really know or like in high school? Perish the thought – we’d still be living out our lives with social contact limited to the people whose company we actually enjoy.

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Five alternative uses for killer heels

Killer heels are always in fashion, because having two raw bloodied steaks instead of feet is fun and attractive. These sadist heels come in a variety of colours and styles but only one height: vertiginous and nosebleed-inducing. All killer shoes come with pain factor 1000 guaranteed, for your own good, because if you are not cross-eyed with pain then they’re not sexy enough. Whilst hobbling around the dancefloor in a London nightclub this weekend in a classic pair of killer heels, in order to distract myself from the raging red mist obscuring my vision, I came up with a list of alternative uses for my killer heels in order that I never have to wear them ever again.

Could be put to much better use as ballistic missiles

Could be put to much better use as ballistic missiles

1. Weapons. I am constantly short of deadly weapons, despite the fact that our country is continually churning them out and sending them overseas to various rich dictators who probably have fewer enemies than me. I feel that my killer heels could be put to much better use being launched at my enemies, either flung into the air as lone diamante missiles, or bundled up with several other pairs into killer-heel-boulders, set on fire and rolled down distant hills in the vague direction of people I don’t like. Continue reading

8 ‘looks’ that shouldn’t be seen anywhere this spring

Call it fashion if you like, but some items of clothing are designed purely to create interest and controversy – rather like each year’s rogue Apprentice contestant who is an expert in the art of sexist jokes and fucking up but who couldn’t sell a hot sausage at a famine. Just as Lord Sugar doesn’t hire the twit with the astonishing haircut and inexplicable business catchphrase, nor should you run out to the nearest shop and purchase the pink leather trousers you saw on Cheryl/Elle/Naomi. These women are either paid to look ridiculous or paid to make them look good – difficult, if you are not a 7 foot tall Amazonian beauty. There are so many atrocities in the S/S 2012 collection that I struggled to whittle them down, but my intense bewilderment at and hatred of certain items ensured that I managed in the end. Click here to see the 8 things you shouldn’t wear under any circumstances, including insanity, this Spring.

Large knickers, larger loving

Viva la revolution

Now I won’t be the first woman to bemoan the demise of large, comfortable knickers, but it really is a matter close to my heart. Last week my manager anonymously received a series of tasteless knickers on his desk, the worst pair apparently having been created using a fisherman’s net and a prostitute’s ankle chain. It might have been sent by a female, but I seriously doubt it; what woman would want to be associated with a pair of knickers which screams ‘PAY HERE’ and ‘ARSE-DEATH’ simultaneously?

These tiny, mesh-like, stringy garments are not knickers. They are thinly-disguised cheesewires. They are designed to inflict pain, not initiate lust, although sadly there are some men who genuinely appreciate women who look like they have covered their crotches in PVA glue and rolled in gaudy cuttings from a tart’s dress-maker’s floor. When did less become more in the knicker department? When did a small quantity of cheap material begin to cost more than swathes of traditional knicker cloth?

Ladies! Little knickers make our bums look bigger – not smaller! How can we buy jeans which make our bums look smaller when we wear knickers which emphasise the bulges, the ripples, the cellulite?!

This is a call to arms to bring back the sexy larger knickers which we can sit down in without wincing but also wear in front of men without confusing them beyond belief (“Why are you wearing baggy bicycle shorts?”). French knickers for example, give lots of coverage but are still amazingly sexy. We’re not talking Victorian knickerbockers, we’re talking well-cut, bum-defining, gorgeous feeling larger knickers which stir the male imagination and make them want to see more. If French knickers were War & Peace, then thongs would be the equivalent of a post-it note; if you can read it on the shelf, why buy it?

Non, je ne regrette rien

Le freak, c'est chic

I cannot speak French, but I never-the-less yearn for the endless elegance and allure of the Parisian woman, and so in the past week I have been striving to become one. Despite having spent all my food money on ‘chic’ clothes, and bought lots of non-Parisian things by accident, je ne regrette rien…
As I understand it, the French woman has 5 things that we English generally do not:

1. Clean yet tousled unstyled hair.

2. Only 7 key items in her wardrobe and the rest in storage.

3. A string of desperately-in-love men clinging to her Chanel slacks

4. Excellent coffee

5. A realisation of exactly how feminine men’s clothing can make you look.

Here are my Parisian ‘looks’ attempted to date:

1. Man’s shirt, Man’s belt (chopped down), skinny jeans, beige brogues, oversized vomit-coloured sweater

2. Bootcut jeans, stripey french-like top, glittery tennis shoes, hair tied back and a foot-long baguette (not really)

3. Black pleated mac, skinnies, brogues and a passionate Parisian stare

4. Navy dress, black tights, back-combed hair, smoky eyes and a bottle of wine (accessories are key)

According to Ines de la Fressange, the 7 basic items a woman needs in her wardrobe are: A classic trench coat, a good pair of jeans, a man’s black blazer, a navy v-neck sweater, a leather jacket, a tank top, and – of course- a little black dress. I must have at least 200 items of clothing (most aren’t worn), and I didn’t own a single one of these key items apart from the little black dress, which according to de la Fressange I have been wearing incorrectly anyway (wear with large sunglasses, flats and a frown for true Parisian chic).

This week I have bought the black blazer and some classic bootcut jeans. Next year I’ll be getting the rest when HSBC stop sending me threatening letters (“Pardon, je ne pas comprehend, je suis une chic Parisian”). In the meantime I will continue my love affair with Parisian Chic from afar, leaving trails of tester Chanel from Debenhams in my wake, talking in a throaty French accent and practising my mournful French stare on the bailiffs.

The Only Way Is Katie

Bling-a-ling-a-ling

My friend Katie is a walking sequined scandal, and in an ideal world would come with a pink diamond-studded ‘Caution’ sign. In a less than ideal world (this one) she is free to walk the streets causing sparkly mayhem wherever she goes and generally providing us with an endless stream of blinging anecdotes. Here are some guidelines on how you can unleash your inner Katie Victoria Adams – Essex style.

1. Wear suspenders and a short bright purple dress to the Christmas party and still manage to look classy. Steal wine off all the tables, tell your old manager you hate his hair, snog your best mate and still manage to look classy.

2. Go on holiday to Las Vegas, meet Nelly and let your friend sexually assault him first. A true friend.

3. Get severe alcohol poisoning in Vegas, sleep it off then carry on partying.

4. Wear bright stripy leggings and Ugg boots to work just to piss off the veterans.

5. Force your friend Jamie to accompany you to Ann Summers where he will hang around uncomfortably while you gaze at the diamante-speckled knickers until he is accused of ‘lurking’ by the shop staff.
6.  Rap badly on stage to a slow song with a fellow team member openly trying to grope you.
7. Tell everyone you’re a non smoker. Whilst smoking.
8. Go for a spa day and insist on wearing your false eyelashes even in the swimming pool and sauna.
9. Create a special gang just for wine drinkers, just because we are all so good at it.  <W>

10 excellent reasons to wear leather to work

“Don’t you fucking dare”

1. It’s the next best thing to bringing in a cow, without all the flies and piles of shit in the lift

2. The punters love it

3. It makes loud squeaking noises whenever you move too suddenly. This reminds others to heed your presence and bring you chocolate, guinea pigs and vats of wine

4. It will take you back to your Neanderthal roots, but is more socially acceptable than an animal skin loin cloth

5. If you wear goggles and a shit-eating grin people will think you are a hard fighter pilot. Colleagues will be queuing up to be Goose to your Maverick and that smug-but-fit aerodynamics trainer you fancy will fall in love with your dangerous ways.

6. John Travolta is fit

7. So is Olivia Newton-John

8. Well they were in 1978

9. Leather eradicates the need for chest hair as it automatically increases your manliness (this goes for women too)

10. It really pisses vegetarians off if you tell them you skinned it yourself. Even if it’s fake.

Bland bags and sad-rags

Very Large Knickers

These beauties will catapult you into fashion super-stardom

2011 has been a  year for many things. It has not been a year for buying clothes. Poorer than a poor man’s dog, my options have been fairly limited to online browsing (dangerous), charity shop runs and Primark sprees.

There are obvious setbacks for each of these, so I’ve been recycling my entire wardrobe to try and create new looks without spending any money, and here are my five key fashion success stories:

1) Wearing my summer wardrobe in winter. Wearing 5 sundresses at a time keeps your middle warm while giving you an eclectic, individual look and blue knees.

2) Giving new life to my old leather jacket. Two sizes too big, it’s still (fake) leather and looks lovely over 3 jumpers with the sleeves rolled up. If you rough it up a bit with a cheese grater and team it with a sweatband you can even work that deceased rock-star look.

3) Not throwing away holey socks and ripped underwear. Wear them on other parts of your body to instantly transform them into ‘alternative wear’. There is NOTHING more fashion forward than sewing grey knicker fragments onto the collar of your favourite shirt.

4) Adding household items to my outifts. Jazz up that old winter jumper by adding twists of tinfoil, forks and spoons to get that sought after metallic look. You can bend them into smiley faces and other cute icons, making you the most desirable girl in the office. Please note: large magnets may compromise your style credentials.

5) Embracing the natural look. When you can’t afford clothes, just go naked. Very few people will complain and you might even set a new trend! Beware of frostbite though.

Sifting for gold: The best retro/vintage websites

A few of my favourite vintage/retro websites. Hide your credit cards before viewing… pretty things abound!!!

Etsy – http://www.etsy.com/

With sections such as ‘Geekery’ and ‘Weird’, this site will cater for all retro tastes. Etsy is like a huge online curiosity shop, with items ranging  from honey badger t-shirts to Tasmanian devil figurines. The dresses are stunning, with helpful descriptions about the style, the influences and which figures it will flatter. My favourite find today is this gorgeous dreamy number, which can be worn in two different ways – both divine.

Retro Chick – http://www.retrochick.co.uk/about/

A blog-cum-shopping website, Retro Chick covers all bases, whether you’re looking for new inspiration or information on era-specific designers and shapes. The best part is the passion that Gemma Seager (the woman behind the title) puts into her blog and her stories. If, like her, you’re an office girl who dreams of vintage and retro, this is one site you can’t afford not to visit!

Beyond Retro – http://www.beyondretro.com

Beyond Retro is a staple stop-off for me when I’m on the hunt for new clothes. The web design is quirky and original, with old-fashioned drawings, images and designs making the whole experience feel distinctly vintage. This site focusses on clothing and accessories alone – albeit for both men and women – so you might need to shop around online a bit more if you’re looking for homeware and other items.

Vintage Fabric Market – http://www.vintagefabricmarket.co.uk/acatalog/Kitchenware.html

Do you love making your own clothes? Perhaps you have a retro styled kitchen or bedroom that you want to fill with quirky furnishings. Well this website is full of era-specific fabrics, linens and knick-knacks for the home, in addition to some beautiful vintage and retro clothing.

Vintage Pin up – http://www.vintagepinup.com/Docs/enter.htm

This site will satisfy any retro glutton’s appetite for pin up art, with images of the most popular – and the less well known – pin ups of the 30s, 40s and 50s. The images are available in various styles (water colour, oil painting and pastels) and come in a range of super innocent to blushingly raunchy. Don’t visit this site unless you want to buy, as the images are too gorgeous to resist – you will want one in your home.

This Charming Girl – http://shop.thischarminggirl.com/

With a mixture of vintage and contemporary jewellery, this online shop is great for finding unique accessories to go with any retro outfit. Check out their sister site Bad Passion too for even fiercer finds.

Vintage and Retro: A Modern Love Affair

Despite the many attractions of the present (24 hour supermarkets, vast quantities of affordable cosmetics, roll-on deodorant), my heart will always belong to another number – specifically the 30s and 40s, with their structured, femme fatale style lines, their obsession with film noir, dark lips and simmering passions.

Forget Kate and Cheryl, my ultimate fashion idols are Audrey and Rita, with their willowy lines and commitment to a strictly individual style. Audrey’s little black dress endures as the ultimate classic ‘look’, and who can forget Rita’s raunchy yet ever so classy striptease in that Gilda dress?

But who were their inspirations? Did they look back to the past for their hair, their make-up, their clothes? No, they were rooted firmly in Fashion Present. As with today’s stars, Audrey and Rita had fashion glory at their fingertips, with designers queuing up for the chance to dress them.  Audrey was dressed by her favourite designer Givenchy for years, and Rita returned time and time again to Jean Louis for her screen wardrobe. Both had vastly different styles, with “The Great American Love Goddess” Rita favouring glamorous, curve enhancing gowns, and elegant Audrey leaning towards clothes with more timeless, clean lines.

But in their spare time, both actresses were reportedly very relaxed about their style, favouring comfortable shoes and baggy jumpers. Perhaps their ability to look divine in the simplest of outfits when stripped of their on-screen dazzle is the real reason these women outshine today’s celebrities by fashion aeons; elegance comes from within, and is sometimes best demonstrated by women at rest, in comfort, and at their most relaxed.