I've got a heart full of soul

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Today has been one of the slowest days of the year so far. I blame having Physics first lesson...it's hardly motivation for the day. I seem to have survived though, despite being rained on several times and having to dodge multiple ping-pong balls in P.E, and am now looking forward to a nice evening in sewing up some samples for my Textiles coursework and watching the new Outnumbered which is on TV later. I loved the old series and hope they manage to make it work, even with the actors being much older.

Please excuse my lack of good quality photos - the rain has not made shooting very easy however I do intend to make up for it with some better ones this weekend. This outfit was from Monday...I was feeling very autumnal (what a surprise) and felt like whipping out my comfy old cardigan I bought from Clothes Show Live last year. I wore it with a shirt from Blitz, tights from H&M, dress from Camden Passage and shoes from Clothes Show. The shoes are adorable and incredibly granny-ish, however they are not very practical for winter as they are absolutely freezing.

In other news, my hamster Elvis is doing well...we've had him for just over a week now and he is really starting to settle in, although as you can see he still can't hold still for pictures very well.
I also got some old film developed, and as is my resolution to post twice a week I may as well show them to you now, even though they are a little jumbled (but then again so is this entire post).

1) The room we stayed in on our one-night Geography field trip to Guildford 2) Pretty lights on during the day in Oxford 3&4) On Boxing Day my family and I went on an early morning walk around Exmouth Market and it was really tranquil and quiet and I found a cool bike

1-4) I turned 16 in November last year and had a really awesome day, finished off with an amazing chocolate orange marble cake in the shape of a record from the fabulous Coco's Cakes

1) My cousin & I on my birthday 2) I had a sort of slumber party thing with my friends, which of course meant Clueless and a pick and mix cake 3) We discovered a diner in France that sold the most incredible passionfruit milkshakes

I apologise for the fact that this post made absolutely no sense whatsoever...I will be back to more structured blogging soon I promise.
In the meantime, I hope you are having a good week,

ellie xo

and the background's fading out of focus

Saturday, 25 January 2014

Happy Saturday! I hope you are all having a good weekend. Mine started off with a lovely parcel from Brag Vintage containing a gorgeous new checkered jacket, which obviously I had to wear straight away. I also finished a shirt in my sewing class (I will post about it soon) and had my eyes tested...which confirmed my suspicion that while I have near perfect vision in one eye, the other can barely see two metres in front of my face. Oh, the joy of short-sightedness. It does, however, give me all the more reason to expand my collection of granny-esque vintage glasses frames, which I see as no bad thing.

I ended up going for a wander around Brick Lane after lunch and wore my jumper from Clothes Show, shorts and shoes from Rokit, tights from H&M,  and socks from Banana Republic. I am absolutely obsessed with checks and tartan at the moment, and so felt it made sense to wear a mash of the prints all at once.  My jacket is from Brag Vintage, an online vintage clothing store founded in Sheffield. It offers a variety of carefully sourced and handpicked items, ranging from Levi jackets and shorts to light knitwear and accessories, and I can vouch for their speedy delivery - it took only two days for this beauty to arrive on my doorstep. Prices are incredibly reasonable, and I still can't get over the sheer amount of stock - if you want a good choice of unique denim jackets and shorts, this is the store for you.

I absolutely love Brick Lane. It's been a regular haunt of mine since my cousin-in-law introduced me to it when I was fourteen. The clashing cultures and history of the area fascinates me, and I love the regularly changing markets and pop up events that take place just across the road in Spitalfields. There are obviously amazing restaurants like Poppie's fish and chips, a whole host of independant coffee shops, and a tonne of crazy vintage and secondhand stores. There seems to be something going on every time I visit; street performances and concerts, street-art demonstrations, protests and board games being played in the middle of the road. It's a hub of creativity, and despite my every effort I just can't seem to tire of the place.

 Also, you may have noticed my blog has had a bit of a makeover...I finally got the theme sorted out, and although I intend to work on it a little more and finish off a few bits, I think it definitely looks tidier. The theme is made by Sweet Lemon Grey designs on Etsy, and I couldn't recommend them more.
What do you think?

ellie xo

the open sky is not your home

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

 It's Wednesday again. That blue kind of day that seems to go on forever. The week isn't new and exciting anymore (not that a Monday morning is very exciting at all) and Friday still feels years away. I, however, actually had quite a nice wednesday, as I got to attend a presentation and Q and A session with photographer Martin Parr at my school, which I will mention properly later in this post. I also arrived home to find my dad had been busy making bread and butter pudding for dessert tonight, so I am obviously in the best of moods as if you don't know already the way to my heart is quite definitely through my stomach.

I wore this outfit on Sunday for a family lunch to celebrate my cousin's new job. I bought the jumper from Rokit's january sale for £9, and paired it with my shirt and skirt from Blitz in Brick Lane. The tights and socks are H&M, the shoes from Clothes Show and the belt belonged to my mum. I am obsessed with dotted tights at the moment, although I'm down to my last pair as I seem to manage to ladder them every single time I wear them, even if I don't leave the house.

Some little things I've been into recently. My 16th birthday bracelet from Hirst Antiques, tiny leather-bound book from Venice with tiny photos of the city inside, and a watch from my cousin which has a little camera and pen moulded inside it. 

As again everything was very autumnal in colour. I haven't really got out of my autumn phase yet, despite it being halfway through January. I blame the weather - it's pretty mild over here at the moment, and for some reason it doesn't feel like winter really happened at all. I would probably believe you if you said I had the dates wrong and it was actually still November.

(above photograph from martinparr.com)
As mentioned earlier, I got to attend a presentation and Q and A session with the photographer Martin Parr. His work has developed over his long career from black and white to colour, film to digital, editorial to commercial, and almost everything in between. It also covers a vast range of subject matter, investigating topics such as consumer culture, tourism, stereotypes, traditions and expectations. I particularly like his work from the 70s, and sets looking at normality and the contrast between real life and what we imagine life to be like. I also liked his approach to photography as he rarely uses photoshop and never sets up his photos; instead he prefers to work with natural and unplanned scenes he comes across on his travels. Parr's work is really worth looking at, and can be seen easily on his regularly updated website.
I hope you are all having a good week!

ellie xo

I was happy in the haze of a drunken hour

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Hello again! Apologies in advance for the lack of proper photos...I've ended up at my Auntie's this weekend and so only have some odd ones from this week...which has been a hell of a week if I do say so myself. It started off well with a trip down to Brick Lane with my buds Poppy and Mabel to attend the Industry Talks at Beyond Retro, where we had a really awesome time and met some amazing people. Then on Tuesday I arrived to my first lesson only to find out that we were going to be dissecting hearts...which is not really the most desirable thing to be doing before 9am on a week day. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday slipped by without me really noticing, however I did get to watch The Commitments on Friday evening. I've seen the play, the film, have the soundtrack on vinyl and am in the process of reading the book, and am beginning to worry that I'm developing a sort of infatuation with Doyle's fictional gaggle of misfits. The film definitely did not disappoint, combining the easy-going, light-hearted humour of the tale with the darker, underlying theme of the economic situation in Ireland at the time. Everything is said without being said...a very young teenage couple pass by with a pram; children can be seen playing with fire and rubble in the backgrounds of most scenes; everyone is poor and everyone is unemployed. It contrasts with the film's musical tone excellently and is a classic example of clever and well-planned directing.

 The shirt I wore on Friday is from Beyond Retro, and is worn under a floral top from Rokit and a green cardigan from Blitz. My jeans are from Topshop (finally I have found comfortable jeans that actually fit me properly), my shoes from Clothes Show and my jewellery belonged to my mum.

I re-organised some of my shelves recently, and added a few new things such as my earl grey tea cup candle, vintage books, flower crown from summer and my Rookie yearbooks. I have a thing for old books, one of my favourite being my mum's old Brownie handbook. I used to read it when I was little and pretend I was a Brownie or a Girl Guide. The photograph is of my Nan and Granddad. Also added to my miscellany of keepsakes was my new Orla Kiely enamel pot and houseplant.

On a separate note, I felt it was necessary to address my recent obsession with tartan and checkered prints, shown above by my current collection of skirts (pictured above with gorgeous Orla Kiely scrapbook from my cousin and The Police record). Tartan and checks have been slowly clawing their way back onto the scene for a few seasons but this time they really seem to have made their mark, shown by the sudden increase in their appearances on the catwalk, for example the above styles by Derek Lam and Emilia Wickstead. Personally, I can't get enough - every time I go out I have to physically restrain myself from buying more checks.
Have a good week,

ellie xo