Clarabella Speaks.

"It is not in the stars to hold our destiny, but in ourselves" - Shakespeare

Friday, 23 November 2012

Why did Chloe do anything next?

"What Chloe did next",  I don't know about you, but my first thought after reading those words was 'Why??'. Given the last CJG collection I didn't think we'd be seeing another one, but then again a parent's love is blind.

You've got to hand it to whoever wrote the feature on the Topshop website; if I had had no previous knowledge of the first collection I would have been excited to see what the next page had in store for me. But alas, the world isn't perfect and given said previous knowledge, phrases such as "Lavish sky-high heels...and dainty ballerinas", "high fashion twist" or "soft velvety suedes and delicate mesh overlays" had me under no illusions.

The monstrous heels, as well as the monstrous prices, are back. Except this time with some biker boots and flats added into the mix (monstrous is an apt description for them too). Maybe it's just a matter of personal taste, but I don't understand how a collection made up of a combination of studs, 6 inch heels, snake print and could ever look anything other than trashy? Maybe that's an opinion that could be proved wrong with the right outfit, but I don't think I'll be parting with upwards of £115 to find out. I'd rather put the money towards a pair of actual designer shoes, or fruit. Imagine the amount of pomegranates I could buy with that.

And speaking of actual designer shoes, the CJG version of the red Louboutin sole is back with an exciting new "stamp of individuality" - her signature charms print. Sorry what? Don't try and twist someone else's trademark idea into your own by adding a new dimension. Any design on the sole of a shoe will never be original, and so it's a territory better left untouched.

I'm not really sure what else I can add. I think it's pretty unlikely I will ever be a fan of CJG for Topshop but obviously someone out there is (size 36 in the 'stud lightening platform sandals' has sold out). Nonetheless it's always fun to rant about these things, and we all know how much I love a good rant. I've given you my opinion, now it's time to decide your own. I would say 'here are some of my faves' but obviously that doesn't apply here so instead, here is a selection from the collection (have no fear, the rhyme ends here).

Un besito guapos

Saturday, 10 November 2012

An Ode to the Great British Highstreet

Hola a todos!

It has somehow got to that time of year again when Christmas lights are going up and the supermarkets are selling Christmas food (namely turrón and panettone aquí en España), so naturally it is also time for me to trawl the internet and torture my poor mama dearest with links of clothes she can feel free to buy me.

Sounds pretty standard right? Well think again, because this year's present hunt has brought about a realisation (greater than "i have zero clothes") that has inspired this blog. Said realisation: I miss fashion. And after four months of clarabella not speaking, I miss blogging too.

You may wonder how this could be: I am in Spain, not some third world country without access to clothes shops; I still play dress up every morning until I find an outfit I like (although if you could see me right now you may wonder); Spain produces the same fashion magazines as the UK, albeit with a slight language difference; and I still have internet access. With regards to the last two points, I will admit that maybe I have gotten a little lazy (the inevitable -Durham- Erasmus mentality) and that reading ELLE in Spanish takes more effort than I at times wish to exert and that my 'to-read' list of fashion blogs is increasing without ever being read. However in my defence, even if I wasn't so vaga and was reading a magazine and blog a day, I would still not be sartorially satisfied. Why? Because I am missing the diversity and excitement of the Great British High Street, and that is something I never thought I'd say.

Topshop come back to me!

Before anyone gets up in arms and accuses me of slagging Spanish fashion, this is not what I'm doing. In fact in recent days, as my tally of amigas has quadrupled (I'm not bragging about my popularity - I started with 3), I have found myself admiring their outfits, as happens with la gente in the street too. Rather, I am lamenting the mostly conformist attitude of Spanish fashion - I have noticed that the outfits (that is those worthy of street style status) tend to be elegant with more class than brass, for example cream jumpers with indigo skinny jeans and knee high boots. 'Hang on a minute' you may think, 'isn't this the girl who is always babbling on about how the only way is chic?' And yes, I put my hands up and admit it, maybe I have been too closed minded in the past (this is painful): as much as I am an ambassador of all things chic, the world would be a very boring place if we didn't mix things up a bit. Ouch.

There's no denying that she has style but it's not very exciting!

So basically what I'm saying is that the Spanish High Street is lacking in exciting variety. Yes they've got Zara, Mango, Pull & Bear all at rather fabulous prices, and whilst you can source a good purchase alli, to be honest they are very much of a muchness. And as for H&M, the clothes may look relatively good on the hanger, but on a hanger is where they should stay if you value the quality, cut and fit of your clothes. Obviously the Spanish high street isn't confined to 4 shops but I've learnt that if you haven't heard of the store and the prices seem cheap, the clothes look it and it's better avoided.

The Great British High Street, and the brands that it connotes, such as Topshop, Warehouse, Next, River Island, is considered to be one of the best in the world but it's only now that I'm appreciating why. I used to dislike that London Street Style was celebrated for being eclectic and now I wish I saw more of it's influence when I walked down the street - bring me some of that creativity and variety! Don't get me wrong obviously the afore mentioned stores are not the be all and end all (heaven forbid), but they would certainly not go amiss here to add some fun to a stylish but rather standard selection of clothes - there's only so much a girl can do with a 20kg baggage allowance.

Okay so the makeup is a little bizarre but this is so refreshing. Her outfit makes me want to go shopping (preferably in the UK)!

I got asked this week if I missed Primark and my initial reaction was one of horror, as I quickly sought to clearly state that the answer was no. But you know what, whilst I avoid shopping there, there is something to be said for the range of styles that it offers. Again, something I never thought I'd say, but it appears this whole Year Abroad business is opening my mind to a whole range of things, not just botellons and boys with piercings. Tehe.

Un besito.