Sunday, October 30, 2011

Killing it **UPDATED with more Halloween photos of meeeee!**

I mentioned a couple of posts back that I wanted to dress up as a slutty Rainbow Brite for Halloween. But as it turns out, I didn't end up going anywhere for Halloween this year that gave me an excuse to dress up.

Major sad face.

Because how many other chances do you get in a year to legitimately dress up as a slutty Rainbow Brite? Two, maybe three tops. But, instead, this year I am hanging at home with the husband and my cats, eating brownies and watching Army of Darkness. Yes that is fairly awesome, but I am dressed in my jammies and not in a multi-coloured mini dress with striped thigh-highs so that is a bit of a bummer.

And don't get me wrong - it isn't the dressing up slutty that I miss. Hell, that is something that can be done any day of the week just by forgetting to wear a skirt. It is the pretending to be someone else for a night that I miss the most.

Lindsey Lohan's character in "Mean Girls" keenly observed, "in Girl World, Halloween is the one night a year when a girl can dress up like a total slut and no other girls can say anything about it." 

And for most girls this certainly appears to be true. But I have always preferred to go for gore over looking tarty:

(In case you are wondering, I was dressed as Lavinia from Titus Andronicus. Yeah. No one at the party got it either. I ended up just telling people I was a zombie after I got sick of explaining it a hundred times.)

Dressing slutty at Halloween is definitely the default position for celebrities - this time of year we are bombarded with a parade of C-list starlets dressed in their little sister's Bo-Peep costume or a pvc catsuit. 

However, I have been able to find examples of a couple of gorgeous celebs that really are a treat instead of an evil, whorish trick:

1. Chloe Sevigny as Joan of Arc
This. Is. Brilliant.

Because Chloe isn't just dressed up as Joan of Arc - the earphones and walkman were referencing lyrics from The Smith's song, "Bigmouth Strikes Again" ("Now I know how Joan of Arc felt, as the flames rose to her Roman nose and her Walkman started to melt"). 

Yeah, that is about as hipster as a Halloween costume can get!

2. Agnyess Deyn and Alex Chung as Wayne and Garth (Wayne's World)

 How cute do these model friends look?

This just goes to show that, when you are ridiculously good looking for a living, you don't need to put it all on show to get attention and get all the boys.

3. Evan Rachel Wood as Magenta (Rocky Horror Picture Show)


I love a good Rocky Horror costume! And it would be so easy to make this smutty by raising the hem or wearing stripper boots - but Rachel has kept it sassy but classy.

4. Amanda Seyfried as some kind of a dog

Ok. So this isn't particularly clever and took naff all effort. But there is no denying that Amanda looks stupidly adorable in this puppy costume.

5. Elisha Cuthbert as Alex DeLarge (A Clockwork Orange)

It would have been pretty easy for cutie Elisha Cuthbert to show off her little bod in a tiny fairy costume or Wonder Woman outfit, but she chose this instead. It probably got her photo into less magazines but I give her major props for not slutting it up like her peers.

6. Kate Beckinsdale as Bride of Frankenstein 

I think Kate is trick-or-treating with her kiddies here so it wouldn't have been appropriate for her to wear anything too skimpy. She looks so gorgeous in this get-up. Although you would think that she would be sick of wearing corsets by now...

7. Michelle Trachtenberg - Pageant princess

Nothing is scarier than a pageant princess, after all! So adorable. Michelle seems to normally go for a miniskirt version of an otherwise respectable costume (one year she was a slutty Snow White, for example), but this choice is much nicer.

So, that is it for me this Halloween. Back to the chocolate and the Evil Dead!!!

**EDIT** Ask and you shall receive! Due to popular demand (Well... I got one request. And I think it might have been from my husband) - here are some pics of my Halloween costumes over the years!!!!

Akasha from Queen of the Damned

Another one as Lavinia/ random zombie

Ventriloquist dummy 

This was just for a Halloween Ball - I'm not meant to be anything in particular...

GoGo from Kill Bill 
(I also had a very cool meteor that I hit everyone with all night)

Zombie cheerleader

You're welcome!!! :)

    Friday, October 21, 2011

    Cut and paste

    Do you ever have those "ugly face" days? You might be well-rested and otherwise feel peachy-keen, you do your make-up the exact same way you do every day - but something about your face is just off and nothing seems to fix it. In fact, it may inspire you to put on too much make-up to compensate and actually make yourself look even worse. It is a spiralling disaster of ugliness.

    I have no idea if these days are all just in my head or whether there is something objectively wrong with my face on these days, but either way theycan put me in a serious funk. So much so, in fact, that they make me fantasise about all the different ways I could have my face surgically altered so that "ugly face" days would be nothing more than a bad memory.

    Thankfully, I have only ever left these as fantasies and have never acted on them. But I have spent enough time contemplating what I would have changed and how I would like my face to look and I have come up with a list of what I consider to be the perfect facial features - the idea being, should I ever feel so inclined, I would be able to take my list into a plastic surgeon and demand that my face be carved, moulded, chiselled and plumped in accordance with the list's specifications.

    And, of course, I thought I would share this list with you! Cos I am kind like that.

    1. Eyebrows
    Maybe this is an odd place to start but I am kind of going top-down here (structure and order are important, you guys!).

    As I have mentioned in an earlier post, I plucked the crap out of my eyebrows when I was a teen in an attempt to look like Drew Barrymore. Has this mistake made me embrace my natural eyebrow shape and stop coveting celebrity eyebrows? Pfft - no!

    There are many girls out there with lovely, strong and well-shaped brows, but the one whose eyebrows have always made me seriously jealous ever since she first hit the scene in "The Professional" (or "Leon" for my European friends) is Natalie Portman.

    And to show just how important a beautiful brow is, here she is rocking a bald head and still looking smoking hot thanks, in no small part, to her pretty eyebrows:

    They are dark but not too dark, straight but not too straight, shaped but not overplucked. Basically, they defy trends and therefore always stay in style and relevant. Something that cannot be said for my silly, little, 90s Drew-brows.

    2. Eyes
    I have always wanted to have brown eyes. I think brown eyes are gorgeous - they are large and doe-like and make boys swoon - like those belonging to Audrey Hepburn,Winona Ryder, Natalie Portman or Audrey Tautou.

    A while back I decided to play God a little and ordered a pair of brown contact lenses so that I could have  lovely, soulful brown eyes too. And the result was... ok. It wasn't awful - just ok. But really, they were just my plain ol' eyes, only darker.

    It was then that I realised that it wasn't so much the colour of the eyes but the shape that is all-important. So my pick for perfect eyes is now solely based on shape (although her eye colour also happens to be quite pretty) - Olivia Wilde:


    They are a gorgeous almond, cat-eye shape. Her eyes are almost too pretty to be real - as I have previously suggested, she is more than likely an alien who tried to make her face look just like ours but got everything just a little too perfect.

    I hate her.

    3. Ears
    So, this is weird. I hadn't actually thought about who I would put down as my choice for perfect ears until my husband raised it.

    I was shocked to realise that this is because I am actually very happy with my ears! They are small, neat, nicely shaped and stick out just enough to be cute (according to my husband, anyway).

    So there is nothing to see here people - I am actually satisfied a part of my face!

    6. Nose 
    But let's not get all confident and cocky. There is still much to be done to the rest of my mug! Like my nose, for example. And I am always wondering just how much difference a perfect little nose would make to my overall appearance.

    Choosing this one was a no-brainer - the owner of my perfect nose, Grace Kelly, is timeless and so is every single feature on her face. In fact, I could have just put her down for every single facial feature, but where is the fun in that?

    While she may not be around anymore, her classic, small ski-jump nose beats out any of the noses running around Hollywood at the moment:


    5. Cheeks
    My cheeks are actually fine. But what good is "fine" when they could be FABOOSH!

    This one was a tie. And I actually can't stand either of these women and don't think either of them look that special - but they do have gorgeous bone structure and have perfect cheeks as a result.

    Number one is Keira Knightley (who I love loath) - she has the kind of cheek bones that could cut glass.

    What. A. Bitch.

    I also love Kate Bosworth's cheeks because they are so round and shiny and look just adorable when she smiles (something that Keira should NEVER think of doing if she wants people to continue to think that she is even sort-of attractive):

    Yeah, I would be looking smug too if I had cheeks so pretty that they managed to nab Alexander Skarsgard - even if it was just for a little while.

    6. Lips
    I like full lips - when I was little I was afraid my lips would disappear like the ones on some old women that I had seen. Whenever I thought about it I would push my lips out in an attempt to counter the inevitable ravages of time.

    But, even though I like them big, I would never take a picture of Angelina Jolie into a surgeon if I was getting my pout sorted. And there is no way in hell I would ever want to a mouth like Julia Roberts. (I don't really want to go into it right now, but Julia is basically my nemisis. Her and Tom Hanks. Every part of them is evil and this includes her stupidly large mouth.)

    Anyway, I really doubt that I would get my lips done because, in reality, it always seem to go so badly for everyone who tries to tinker with their lips. Right, Linds?


    But if it was possible to get my lips done without looking like the type of fish that you would always toss back into the ocean, I would totes get them done just like the Olsen twins (I don't care which one - their pouts are both equally adorable):

    Not too big but nice and full. Perfect.

    7. Teeth
    This is one that I have, and will, seriously consider getting fixed. Perfect, shiny, white teeth are just so nice and having great, healthy teeth can really make a difference to how old you look.

    There are, of course, hundreds of examples of perfect smiles in Hollywood but personally I am obsessed with Blake Lively's for some reason. I think it is because they don't look like super-fake veneers and aren't overly white.

    Whatever it is, every time I watch Gossip Girl, it makes me wonder whether it would be worth my hard-earned dosh on some new chompers:

    Soooooo pretty!

    8. Jawline/ chin 
    To be honest, there isn't anything that wrong with my jawline or chin. But Astrid Berges-Frisbey's face-shape is just so perfect that I felt obliged to include it:

    If you have no idea who she is or you are just having trouble placing her, she was the pretty little mermaid that they captured in the last Pirates of the Caribbean movie:

    She is also proving to be quite the young style-icon and has a wardrobe to die for. Astrid is definitely my new girl-crush. (Alexa who?)

    So there it is - my face-lust list. If I had any kind of photoshop skills, I suppose I would cobble together a photo-composite of these parts, blended perfectly to show either the most sublime face you have ever seen or a face that has gone beyond perfect and into the land of freaky.

    As it is, however, I have no such skills and you will instead just have to use the most powerful of all tools - your imagination. How very retro!

    I also considered doing up a list of perfect male features too, but figured I could save time and just post this instead:

    I know, right?

    Again, YOU ARE WELCOME!!!!!!!

    Sunday, October 9, 2011

    But why can't I be a ninja assassin?

    Have you ever walked out at the end of a movie with an overwhelming urge to become just like the star of that movie? You know, like suddenly wanting to take up martial arts after watching Kill Bill or joining a roller derby team after watching Whip It? Well I do. ALL THE TIME.

    This is sometimes embarrassing for my husband. After watching Black Swan, for example, I was literally dancing down the main street of Newtown humming and doing sad little pirouettes in front of him while he tried to pretend he was invisible. When we got to the car, I excitedly informed him that I was going to take up ballet classes again. This hasn't actually happened yet. But it will! I am sure of it.

    Sometimes a movie will have such a profound effect on me and I will so desperately want to be like the heroine that I actually change my style to dress a bit more like her.  I don't do it consciously. Not really. It is like watching something for 90 minutes is enough to brainwash me into believing that I have always liked that particular way of dressing and that I really need to start dressing like that ALL THE TIME.

    I would like to say that this was something that I only did when I was little, but that would be a lie. I have done it in the last year in fact. In addition to some of the ones I have already mentioned in my other post (Winona Ryder in "Dracula" and everything up to "Girl, Interrupted", Liv Tyler in "Empire Records" and "Stealing Beauty", Drew Barrymore in "Mad Love"), here is a sample of some of the movie characters that have had the biggest impact on wardrobe - in chronological order.

    1. Rainbow Brite

    Rainbow Brite was the first fictional character that I can remember trying to emulate after I watched "Rainbow Brite and the Star Stealer" on VHS. I think I was about six. 


    I used to have this very pretty and very colourful dress that I would wear ALL THE TIME because it was as close as I could find to Rainbow Brite's dress. I styled it with a stretchy, rainbow-striped belt. I cut out wonky-looking stars from different coloured paper and kept them in a little pouch (the stars were MAGICAL!!!!! They could make RAINBOWS!!!!!). I begged my parents to buy me a white pony (preferably with multi-coloured mane and tail) and was constantly frustrated by their failure to meet my demands. It also meant that I would skip everywhere instead of walking so it would look like I was riding a horse. I suspect, however, that this fooled very few people.

    But one day, something AWESOME happened. My ballet class was going to be performing at the end of the year concert and we would all be dressed as toys... and I got to be Rainbow Brite!!!! With a proper Rainbow Brite dress and everything!!!!! (Thank you for sewing that for me btw mum. Oh, and for making the wig. I imagine that took a really long time and I probably didn't thank you properly at the time - so THANK YOU!!!!! It was the best costume ever.)

    Yep, that is me - front, centre and determined not to let the fact that I was way shorter than everyone else get in the way of me being noticed.

    Thankfully, though, I did eventually grow out of this phase and stopped insisting that everything be multi-coloured. But this was just the beginning of the influence of movie characters over my personal style.

    2. Natural Born Killers - Mallory Knox

    Let's fast-forward to high school. By 15, I had lost most of my puppy fat and was starting to get a bit more confidence to like things that made me happy rather than just liking what was popular. I listened to grunge music and wore ripped jeans and quirky outfits that I picked up from op shops. Life was sweet.

    I also started to watch edgy, violent movies which, in retrospect, probably warped my fragile, little mind. My favourite by far was "Natural Born Killers". I had a huge crush on Woody Harrelson and I wanted to be just like Juliette Lewis' character, Mallory Knox.


    This might seem a little unhealthy - to want to be just like an abused, deranged, psychopathic mass-murderer - but I swear it was mostly about her style and attitude and not any homicidal tendencies (oh and I also liked talking with a Southern-American drawl).

    So while the other girls at school were wearing denim a-line skirts and Quicksilver t-shirts, I started to get around in micro-hot pants (that I made out of an old pair of 70s flares), cut-off singlets and bikini tops, a fringed leather vest that kind of smelt like horse and my mum's old pull-on mid-calf boots with stack heels. I should remind you that "boho" was still about 10 years off from being a big, mainstream trend (thanks mostly to Sienna Miller) - in 1995, this was not a fashionable, socially acceptable look in the coastal towns of Australia.

    And because I was still pretty young and didn't quite yet have the confidence to pull off something so off-beat, this look didn't last very long at all.

    3. The Craft - the whole coven

    During my final years of high school, I felt misunderstood and angry ALL THE TIME and wanted everyone to know it. And to make sure that everyone around me was aware of just how misunderstood and angry I was, I wanted to dress in a way that would reflect this - I had always felt like a bit of a misfit and by now I was quite happy to look like one.

    While I had already started working on this look (wearing a lot of black with big boots, dying my hair black, keeping out of the sun and and scowling at everyone), watching "The Craft" really kicked it into high-gear. Because not only did the girls in The Craft wear lots of great, moody outfits, they also had these great ways of reworking their school uniforms so that they looked totally angry and outcast-y even while they were learning.


    I embraced this look completely. No longer were my 12-hole cherry Docs enough for me - I bought knee-high lace up boots (not like the slutty ones you see now with the super-high heels, they were flat and capable looking - good for stomping around with lots of attitude), I replaced my school jumper with a long, navy, equestrian-style blazer that I picked up at an op-shop and my "natural" looking make-up was replaced with black eyeliner and white pancake. I was called a weirdo or a freak and took these as signs that I was getting the look right. I am sure that this, together with my taste in music (Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson, Korn, The Prodigy et al), was of concern to my parents, but they didn't really say anything to me about it at the time.


    I guess they figured that, much like Rainbow Brite, I would eventually get over this phase too. And they were sort of right, I suppose.

    4. The Doom Generation - Amy Blue

    By the time I got to university, I was all about dressing to create an impact and getting attention - but not necessarily in a positive way. And this was definitely affected by the movies I was watching at the time. I was obsessed with Gregg Araki movies, especially "The Doom Generation". I basically dressed and acted like Amy Blue (the movie's anti-heroine played by a very young Rose McGowan) ALL THE TIME.


    I had the black bob, red lips, cat-eye liner, short black dresses, chunky silver rings and lots of black PVC. For me, it was the perfect evolution from The Craft look that I had going on in high school.

    And thankfully, because this was a pretty unknown movie, I don't think many people realised that I was just a cheap copy of a girl in a pretty cheap movie.

    Actually, looking at the picture above, apart from the hair, it looks a lot like something I would wear now. Hmmmm...

    5. The Devil Wears Prada - Andy Sachs

    Fast forward again to a few years ago. Now that I am a working lass, I find that I get a bit lazy with my day-to-day outfits and start going for what is comfortable and safe - like the first two things that I grab from my wardrobe that happen to match.

    But after watching "The Devil Wears Prada" and worrying that maybe I was more like Andy "before" rather than "after" her super-cool, high-fashion makeover, I went on a bit of a shopping binge to buy structured and stylish work outfits and started wearing more accessories and even straightened my hair occasionally.


    But it is just so hard to make this much effort ALL THE TIME so I relapsed into work slob-dom pretty quickly.

    6.  The Runaways - Joan Jett

    Fast-track now to last year - I have been in the work force for a long time and am, for all intents and purposes, a proper grown up.

    But this didn't stop me from leaving the cinema after watching Kristen Stewart in "The Runaways" and declaring to the world that I wanted to be a rock star!

    Of course, at 31 and with no real musical talent, this is not really an option for me. So instead, I just started to dress like Kristen Stewart when I wasn't at work - all skinny jeans, band t-shirts, leather cuffs and converse one-stars. These were things that I already owned but I definitely started wearing them more after watching that movie. She just looked so fricking cool! (Surly, yes. But also very cool.)

    And that brings us to now. It does occur to me that, so long as I keep borrowing looks from movie characters, I will probably ever settle on whatever my "look" is. And it also means that I have to be really careful with what movies I watch. I mean, after watching "Underworld", for example, I did contemplate buying some rubber pants but thankfully my husband talked me out of that one.

    xox EM

    PS - while googling images for this post, I found THIS:

    A slutty Rainbow Brite costume - yeah! Guess what I am going to be this Halloween?!?!?!