Jul 29, 2016

NOSTALGIA

My time at WWD is coming to an end today and even though I've enjoyed this experience, I'm so looking forward to next Monday and the actual beginning of my summer holidays - finally! Nice, I'm coming!

For the past two weeks I've had quite a lot of spare time in the office so I've gone through my blog a few times. Although I'm sure no one except me cares, but I do want it to look consistent. Right now it's not so because there are photos missing (thanks Blogger, you piece of sh*t) in addition to few other annoyances. For that reason my I'm currently fixing the titles so they look the same and then moving on to adding those missing images. It's going to take FOREVER, but maybe my little project will be done in a few years, haha. 

Here, however, is a bunch of inspirational pictures. Because why not.

all pictures weheartit.com

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and the most nostalgic song ever


'cause you were romeo, i was a scarlett letter
and my daddy said stay away from juliet
but you were everything to me i was begging you please don't go

Jul 19, 2016

MOMMA SHORTS

Last Sunday was the first time I attended a festival. I have never really cared for them because they are usually quite a lot of money and rarely showcase the artists that I like. The festival Citadel, for indie bands, was no exception, but I went to hang out with my friend Jaakko since he had travelled all the way to London to celebrate our third annual ginger day. The festival was quite fun, the weather was hot and sunny, and it was just lovely to carry on our little tradition.

Having said that festivals in general aren’t really my thing, the festival looks definitely are. Although Coachella and all those are nowadays basically fashion shows and a way for self-promotion, I do find them extremely inspiring. Vanessa Hudgens, the sartorial queen of Coachella, just kills it every single year. For this reason I would like to attend the Californian hullabaloo one year.

On Sunday though, being fashionable wasn’t really my priority. Lately I haven’t felt too comfortable in my body (wonder why…) so nothing really fits or looks good. So I ended up drawing inspiration from Kylie Jenner’s momma shorts she wore last year. The longer length and the relax cut made me feel more confident. I combined them with Converse, a loose top and a back bag to create that perfect festival look – just like Kylie did consequently!

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middle fingers up, i ain't thinking 'bout you
sorry, i ain't sorry

Jul 17, 2016

WHAT IF EVERYTHING DOES HAPPEN FOR A REASON?

Around two months ago M and I were sitting in a coffee shop, drinking tea from a big white pot and discussing about life – nothing too new there. At the time we were in the midst of our final deadlines in uni and bouncing ideas for our projects. We had both just shared our subjects for our dissertations next year when it occurred to me: everything we had done so far had been leading to that moment. So was there really a set plan for us? The more I thought about it I became certain that there indeed was.

Let me elaborate. Without revealing too much just yet, my dissertation topic has to do with religion and specifically Mormons. As some of you may know, when I was doing my exchange year (also known as one of the best years of my life) in Texas, I lived in a Mormon family. During that year I learnt so much about their religious ways, opinions and culture in general and I’ve always considered religions sort of fascinating. When it came to the point of us deciding on our subject areas, it was N (after my brain-storming session) who suggested I’d write about Mormons. When she said it, everything just clicked. I knew that was the subject I wanted to tackle and explore in more detail. It’s funny how something can just feel so right.

So fast-forward to the coffee shop. As I was sitting there, a game board appeared in my head, almost like Monopoly. The ‘Start’ was when I first saw the High School Musical when I was about 12 or so. You may stop laughing now. Being the typical All-American-High-School-Fairy-Tale it quickly became one of my favourite movies and I watched it several times in my early teens. Zac Efron was my daydream and, interestingly enough, I once wrote in my diary (that I kept on and off for like a month) that I wish he was my step-brother. The reasons for that are beyond me, but what can I say - I was young and naïve. However, that was the virus of my U.S.A. fever. It kept spreading and infecting every cell in my body until one sunny summer day I picked up the ‘Chance card’ from the deck and told my parents that I wanted to go abroad for a year. To my massive surprise they agreed without any persuasions.

And that was the beginning of my life that it is today. Without that year, I, stating the obvious, wouldn’t have met those incredible people I am able to call my family and friends today. Equally important, however, is that I wouldn’t have spent my money excessively on fashion magazines, in which case I would've never realized that writing and fashion were both my callings. If that hadn’t happened, I naturally would've never applied to the school I am in today and thus I would most definitely not be writing my dissertation about Mormons and fashion. None of these things would have happened if I hadn’t seen that film, if my dad hadn’t initially subscribed to Disney Channel because of my little sister, or - and this is digging even deeper - if my little sister hadn’t been born.

Another example could be that if my little sister hadn’t started taking dancing lessons, it wouldn’t have occurred me to do so. Then I wouldn’t have seen J for the first time, thus it wouldn’t have been the reason we bonded back when we started middle school when we were 13. If we hadn’t done that, she might have never become my best friend. And if she wasn’t one right now, I don’t know how I would’ve risen from all the self-doubt, self-pity and other (actual) hardships if she hasn’t constantly cheered me on. She – and all my dear friends – was put in to my life to survive the everyday, learn about life and realise my talent. I could carry on coming up with examples, but I’m sure you got the gist already.

Some could argue that life is a road with many exits, always leading to another one, waiting for you to mold your own path. Some could say that life is a game; you throw a dice, occasionally pick up a chance card and cross your fingers that you aren’t bankrupt (metaphorically). Ultimately everything is based on how the cards have been shuffled and dealt and after that everything is pure luck. But the third option, my denomination, is that everything happens for a reason. Someone else has penned your story somewhere where your powers don’t reach, and although some might find it depressing and even cruel, I find it liberating. To think that every little or bigger bump was bound to happen and to know that every failure and heartache were meant for you to experience is comforting because they are a crucial part of your tale. Keeping that in mind, there then was a reason I didn’t get that specific internship I wanted, wasn’t able to go to that one concert or won that prize I was shortlisted for. Everything teaches and grows you as a person, and there is always a new chapter after another. And when there are no more pages left, your story comes to an end and all you can do is to hope that it was a good read. Nothing then is coincidental and for some reason it brings me great solace.

Having just finished reading a deeply moving novel A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini (I know, I was so late from the bandwagon) I am even more convinced that our lives follow a certain script. I fell in love with this quote from the book: “Behind every trial and sorrow that He makes us shoulder, God has a reason.” It's not about being religious, it's about believing in destiny. 

Jul 14, 2016

LESS THAN 1000 WORDS

I thought it might be a time for a longer what’s up post so here we go.

I honestly can’t believe it’s mid July already. I feel like the time has been on fast-forward and I haven’t been able to enjoy my free time. Fair enough, I finished uni about a month ago and ever since then have been working non-stop first at the pub and then at the pub and WWD simultaneously. The past two weeks have been revolved around work, work and more work, which has been interesting with that five-hour average sleep I’ve gotten each night. Last night I slept six and a half, but that didn’t refresh me at all – if anything, it only made me more exhausted. That’s why I’ve forced myself to drink coffee to keep myself going, but it’s only led to a fact that now I need two cups a day, no exceptions. Summer 2016 achievement: caffeine addiction.

I know it sounds like I’m complaining, but I really am not. Most of you know this by now, but I enjoy working and keeping myself busy because it gives me a rhythm and I guess a sense of purpose. Besides, my summer is only starting. If the beginning of summer was dedicated to the move, stressing out and earning (and spending) money, then the rest of it is reserved for fun friends and travel (more spending money).

August kicks of at me flying to Nice to spend 12 sun-, pool-, and laughter-filled days with Jenni and Birta. We’re staying at Jenni’s summer casa and I in all honesty can’t wait for another two weeks to see my girls. Jenni has already planned us things to do and places to go to and I’m 100% on board as long as I get to spend the first day not doing anything apart from laying on a sunbed and sleeping my sleep deprivation away. Then it’s back to UK, packing Emma’s car with my favourite London girls and heading anywhere but London. The details are still a bit unclear, but the plan is to do a short road trip for three days and see what else this country has to offer. I’m dying to see Bath for its nostalgic glory and, according to Emma, it is the spot for going out. The following week Aliisa will visit me for a few days and, well, I don’t think I need to express how happy I am about that. The days in between I’ll be working, hopefully getting some money and doing a bit of studying because then I’m off to…

…TEXAS! I am finally – after three years – visiting my host-family. This trip came out of the blue as I had initially planned on travelling there after I graduate. However, in order to do so in the first place, I have to write my dissertation and its subject incidentally happens to be Mormons and their dress. I felt like the best way for me to conduct my research would be to immerse myself, once again, to their community. Having the advance of actually knowing and being in close contact with the members of the religion, I could not pass the opportunity of flying there and Utah to start my research. I know I am so lucky and privileged to do so and for that reason I will make this dissertation the best that I possibly can. Consequently, I have spent my lunch hour at the library today collecting 13 books regarding qualitative research. After those books I really hope I know everything about interviews and ethnography!

So loads of cool, fun and unforgettable things are happening, but that’s not until another two weeks of no sleep and more work. Luckily next week I’m not working in the pub until Thursday so I should have some time to start studying and meeting my friends. Talking about friends – Jaakko, my very best ginger friend, is coming over this weekend! It will be our annual ginger day (17.7., never forget) and this year we decided (or were forced to) spend it in London. Then again, as it is the third year, it’s cool to do something special. I love how weird this whole thing is! I’ll tell you all about it next week, don’t you worry!

One final thing that I need to say before this turns into a full on novel is that I am so sad that I haven’t been able to document ANY of my outfits in months (or anything else really). No way am I saying that they have been worth doing so, especially considering that the whole of June I spent in my pub uniform that just happens to be the most awful thing on earth, but I love perusing old images and noticing the change in my style and appearance. Obviously I won’t be able to do so with this time period and that just makes me a bit blue. Then again, I am currently not feeling extremely photo-ready anyway because the past two months have literally been dedicated to eating and eating a bit more so… I haven’t actually worn jeans in over six weeks because I’m scared they don’t fit anymore. :D How sad is that. Well whatever, with all the stress and limited time I’ve had I'm not really surprised. However, once the holidays start I will try my best to ignore the fact that bikinis don’t look that great on me this year (either) and just enjoy myself.

Alright, so that’s me in a little less than 1000 words. In today’s agenda I only have to clean, skype with Mari and climb in bed in a reasonable hour. This ‘day off’ (I mean, working only eight hours is considered a day off, right?) gives me some me-time. Have a great one, babes!

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'cause i know i can treat you better than he can 
and any girl like you deserves a gentleman 
tell me why are we wasting time on all your wasted crime
when you shoud be with me instead

Jul 12, 2016

FENDI HAUTE COUTURE AW16

The reason why I adore fashion is because it offers a ladder to escape from the reality. This was indeed implied and even emphasized at Fendi’s Haute Couture show in Rome last Thursday. A show that was aptly named Legends and Fairy Tales showcased it models from Kendall Jenner to Bella Hadid wearing glorious fur coats and ankle length embroidered dresses.


Fendi’s creative duo, Karl Lagerfeld and Silvia Venturini, is known for its impeccable craftsmanship when it comes to fur and anything related to it. This time around there were voluminous and colourful coats in addition to details, such as sown fluffy flowers, handcuffs and narrow bows neatly tied around the neck. The luxury good was visible in almost every ensemble, conceiting that a Fendi fairy tale princess deserves nothing but splendour.

 

The show was dedicated to the relationship between fashion and fantasy. The embroidery on dresses reminded of murals painted on cave walls thousands of years ago, exposing the stories and myths of the time. Cantering horses, castles and princes and princesses were crucial parts of the romantic tales in the designers’ minds. Even the setting referred to probably the most known story of of all time: Jesus walking on water. The models confidently glided on the transparent stage wearing baroque Mary Poppins inspired laced high heels, while the clear water trickled down and under the catwalk from Trevi fountain. The models hereby quite literally performed a miracle.

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The makeup seemed like it had drawn inspiration from another world-famous novel, The Lord of The Rings and its fictive picture-perfect elves. The hair was wildly curled and clipped back, highlighting the structured eyebrows, slick of a black eyeliner and luminous skin. Reveal your inner Lady Galadriel, anyone? 


The Fendi Haute Couture proves what I have been contemplating on lately: that fashion plays together with fantasy. Sure, we have the ready-to-wear collections with (often) wearable pieces and now some brands even support the industry’s latest trend, ready-to-buy-now option. With Haute Couture however, the expertise, patience and artistic spirit take the spotlight. The limitations become myths themselves, allowing the designers and the recipients to truly get lost in their own imagination. Creativity and one’s own conceptions are the keys to successful, innovative and, well, remarkable and memorable fashion.


Thank you, Fendi, for this tale of sartorial bliss.

Images from Business of Fashion.

Jul 10, 2016

LOCH NESS

The past weeks have been crazy and this is with finishing second year of uni, moving (first to Emma and then to my new home), starting my internship at WWD and simultaneously doing four shifts at the pub. Needless to say, I have had no time to sleep or honestly, do anything. All my spare time I have basically spent cleaning and organising my new room. Well, yesterday we celebrated Nati's birthday eating Italian. I was so full of food and love afterwards. It was definitely something I needed after these insane few weeks.

This post is not, however, dedicated to the move - I'll do that later. Right now I'm going to share you my trip to see (well, almost) the Loch Ness monster.

Mari and I woke up around 6 a.m. on May 25th to catch a bus to Inverness, a town where the famous lake is located. We were both tired, but it was all good since the bus journey took nearly four hours. Besides sleeping, we admired the miraculous Scottish scenery and read our books - our love for good stories is something that brings us together. My book, Love Rosie, was alright. The movie, I think, is much better. The sun was shining brightly and we were keeping our fingers crossed that it would stay that way. Slowly but surely though the clouds gathered to spend some quality time together and kept close contact the whole time we were visiting the monster.

When we arrived to Inverness, our plan was to find a place to hire bikes. Mari had brought up an idea that we could cycle there and I was on board immediately. That would be the best way to see the country side, get some fresh air and essentially be a memory that we would keep forever. The bike hiring boutique was easy enough to find, but using the bikes was a whole different story. They were proper mountain bikes with only handbrakes and I had never cycled with a bike that had no footbrakes. Eventually I got the hang of it, but there was a time that I thought I was going to die. The downhills were the worst, but hey, I'm still alive and writing, aren't I?

The scenenry though, whoa. It was something you can't really describe, but I'll try. Fresh green small and bigger hills covered with yellow flowers, creating a carpet that hides the weed from the world. The quietness that is broken by the wind in your ears and an odd car or two passing you and your bike. The lake that glistens and the small breeze that breaks its delicate surface. The rocks that are so smooth that they could never hurt you. It's beautiful, it's magical, it's remarkable.

We ate typical British pub food (if I had known...) nearby the lake, took some pictures, threw rocks to the lake, listened to the silence, cycled some more, had scones, and met a Swedish woman on our way back to Glasgow. She was so open and lovely and it was so nice to notice that my Swedish wasn't forgotten altogether.

We didn't see the monster, which I was disappointed but I guess that's something I have to live with. I'm so glad I got to see its habitation that holds so many myths, stories and legends, and to which some people have dedicated their whole life to. And, not to get all too deep here, but I'm so grateful that I got to experience it with my dear cousin. This trip was definitely the highlight of my year and I will never forget it.

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lady, running down to the riptide
take away to the dark side
i wanna be your left hand man
i love when you're singing that song and i got a lump on my throat 'cause you're gonna sing the words wrong

Jul 3, 2016

EW TO EU

Brexit, referendum and the EU were terms that sizzled on everyone’s lips approximately a week ago. That is when Britain voted for either to remain or to leave the European Union. To every Londoners shock, including the writer’s, the majority (well, 51%) voted out.

I remember waking up that morning. I knew there was something important I needed to check on my phone and luckily I didn’t need to ponder too long as it was written all over my Facebook wall. Anger, disbelief and terrible disappointment were the top feelings I noticed while scrolling through the numerous posts. I might have taken my thoughts on social media too, declaring what a horrible mistake the UK had made.

The talk about a new referendum, London remaining independently in the EU, Scotland now officially wanting to leave the UK and various other possibilities and theories emerged. What happened though was that Cameron stepped down from the Prime Minister pedestal and all of a sudden the EU wanted to get rid of the UK as fast as possible. The country was, and still is, in a bit of a chaotic and dubious state.

What irritated me the most was the ignorance people had before they voted. I heard that some actually googled ‘EU’ the very next day, which, some could argue, would be a crucial term to know before casting a life-changing vote. Some wanted to turn back time when they heard that the pound did indeed drop like predicted. Yes, what if you had actually researched and believed the statistics? Also, the amount of fury when Nigel Farage not so surprisingly stated hours after the results that in fact those extra £350 million a week wouldn’t go to the NHS albeit stated in their campaign. He is a liar, like many accused him of, but also a politician and you should have realised that. Even I who really does not follow politics on a regular basis got that.

In addition, one of the most frustrating arguments that had been made was that the immigrants basically steal all the jobs and nothing is left for the Brits. In my opinion – and excuse my language – that is bullshit. The job situation here is exactly as it is in Finland, and the same accusations were made there during the latest parliamentary election in 2015. The fact, however, is that the jobs that some (I want to say most, but I don’t have any numbers so I’ll keep quiet) of the immigrants do are essentially jobs that the Brits themselves do not want to do. Take me for an example: about a month ago I got myself a new job working in a pub in central London. Currently there are around ten people working there and one of them is a Brit. Although we are constantly recruiting the English still aren’t queuing up for the job. Yet we immigrants shamelessly and mercilessly just take their chance for honest work. I bet there are a few people shamelessly and mercilessly living on benefits just because they can. These ‘crap jobs’ are essentially jobs that some Brits (and in Finland the Finns so the problem doesn’t just lie in the UK) feel superior to, but in reality someone has to do them and the someones are often immigrants. I’m going to leave it at that, but I think that is something everyone should bear in mind.

Then, what does this mean to me? As a Finn, I have been able to study with the same rights as the UK citizens. This has meant paying ‘only’ £9000 a year for my education, including other benefits, such as no visas etc. The same morning when the news came out, I received an email from UAL promising us that nothing would change too quickly. The people who had started – or will start this fall – will follow the same system they started with. In fact, since the pound dropped down quite excessively, my tuition fees will actually cost me less than before. So thanks, UK.

On a more serious note, this will naturally have more impact on my future than the present. Questions arise: what will happen for my job search – is there actually any point in staying in this country? Do I even have a chance to work here if I wanted to? I will most likely need a work visa, and travelling between Finland (and other destinations) and the UK will become more of a hassle with the (possible) visas and so on. The truth is that nobody knows how the future will look like, not with the Brexit or in general.

However, my main worry regarding the subject was in fact the state of the world we are currently living in. With the likes of Trump rallying in the States and Soini and co. ‘ruling’ in Finland in addition to the numerous terrorist attacks (Orlando, Paris, Istanbul to list a few) that have recently happened, it brings me deep sorrow to know that there is so much hatred in this world. Prejudice and racism have gone nowhere although the western countries have managed to create a pretty illusion that they indeed have been overcome. M told me she heard an old man shouting at a Pakistani man to leave this country basically the minute after the results came in. Sure, there are always the odd ones who consider a behaviour like that acceptable, but this idea of ‘kicking the foreigners out’ will create and fuel hatred even more.

Nevertheless, I am glad and even proud of London as a city to (in most parts) stand against the conservative approach to immigrants. The city needs its workers, talents and characters from all walks of life. That is what makes London one of the most inspirational cities in the world. I am aware that the UK doesn’t only stand for London and I appreciate the fact that everyone has a right to vote. Sometimes it’s just hard to live in a world where your views aren’t met by the majority. However, so far all is good and stable in the life of Nora. Now, excuse me when I go start my shift and prevent Brits their chance to work…