Monday, 9 April 2012

Gypsy Boy Fringe

Okay, so I know you've all been absolutely dying to know why the fuck this blog's called 'Gypsy Boy Fringe'... Well you're in luck; I'm about to tell you...
I wear my fringe with pride, but it's not without its difficulties. We've been through a lot together, and it deserves acknowledgement. Just like a slimy little caterpillar transforming into a beautiful butterfly, Fringey goes through crucial stages too.

Stage 1:
This stage was fundamentally initially a mistake, but in actual fact, it turned out to be the most fun my forehead's ever had. When the hairdresser first did it I genuinely thought she'd tried to cut my fringe OFF, but in retrospect I can now see that actually, what she was doing was creating a thing of great joy. About 90% of people don't agree with this particular life choice of mine, but what I say to them is: 'suck a dick. You wouldn't recognise a laff if it smacked you around the head.' So cute, so fun, and makes the rest of my hair look organised, even when it's really a nest. We'll call this little gem The Mini Fringe.

Stage 2:
The Original Fringe. What I first got when I decided to take the plunge and revert back to the hair I had when I was 7. Kinda short-ish, with only one real specification given to the hairdresser: 'keep my eyebrows in view.' Eyebrows are my favourites, can't go hiding them!

Stage 3:

The Sideswept Fringe. This one comes out to play when my hair is either not behaving, greasy, or just getting on my nerves. Helpful as a backup plan.

Stage 4:
The Curtains. Favoured by boy bands of the 90s, and by me, when nothing else is really working out. Mostly an accident, but sometimes actually quite fun.

Stage 5:
(Shown here in black and white for dramatic effect.)
And the pièce de résistance, the one you've all been waiting for... Gypsy Boy Fringe. This is the fringe in its most natural and primitive state, and also the hardest one to keep at bay. It rears its ugly head at the most inopportune moments, and once it's here it's pretty much impossible to convince it to piss off again. This one acquired its name from my belief that at its peak it resembles a style of hair favoured by Gypsy boys- a look that I assume is achieved with gel and great care to separate the strands in this extremely attractive way. Also known as 'Piecey Gone to Greasy' and 'Bane of my Existence.'

Stage 6:
The Grown Out Fringe. Not my fave, but an inevitable part of the fringe's life.

Stage 7:
The Pretending-you-don't-have-a-fringe Fringe. Also known as 'Being in Denial.'

So there you have it. Gypsy Boy Fringe now makes sense, as does life, and order has been restored not only in this blog, but in the world at large.

Friday, 6 April 2012

Fave Five

I may not be the most 'stylish' girl in the world, but I think I'm the flyest bitch I've ever met. And that's not being big headed; that's just the way it should be. I like the way I dress, of course I do- that's why I pick it over every other option out there. You should be the flyest bitches you've ever met yourselves. If you're not even convinced yourself that what you're doing is wicked, then how is anybody else going to buy into your shit? They're not. So I'm never going to apologise for thinking I look nice- that's the whole reason I took time to get dressed this morning.

In other (more toned-down) news, a 2 minute chat about my fave five items purchased in France led me to properly think about which things I really would struggle to get dressed without. I love most of the clothes I've bought recently (and there are a lot...), but here are the five that made the cut:

1. Chelsea DMs

Don't even know how I would've got through the bitter Millavois winter without these bad boys. They were my Montpellier bargains- €30 and in P H E N O M E N A L condition. Wear them most days; love them always.
Go with everything I own and are one of those essential pairs of boots that make you wonder how you ever lived without them.
(Also, never really seen the higher heeled version on any foot but mine, which makes them that little bit more special!)

2. Acid-y

Well it's pretty enormous, as you can see, but it fits how I like, just the right length and with the shoulders low down on the sleeve. Worn with the sleeves rolled up over little 90s dresses and with plum lips, it's the most fun anyone's ever had.

3. Cropped Cream Dream

THE jumper I'd been looking for my entire life. Kinda cropped, but with the perfect sleeve, the perfect weight, just perfect. Teamed with cut-off Levi's or leather skirts, worn over mini or maxi dresses, or even flung on over a high-waisted jean, it just works.

4. Lennys

Nothing needs to be said here. When I put these on I just feel goooood. It helps that they go with my little 90s throwback, 'Clueless'/Gwen-Stefani-in-her-No-Doubt-days, vibe that I can't seem to shake recently, but I think even if they didn't I'd still wear them. They're too cute not to. One of the more expensive purchases I've made, but definite laffs-per-wear good value.

5. Groove Army-ada

I'd been looking for one of these all year, and then I found a HUGE selection in a vintage shop in Paris. I made L.T. traipse around a whole arrondissement the next day to find it again, but it was worth it. Only for it to fly into the river in a freak sandstorm the week after... Once again, L.T. saved the day and heroically dived in after it (she is my BFF for a reason!) The only minor issue is that Millau's local homeless man rocks a very similar one, so occasionally we look like colleagues (shit... come to think of it, I did actually get groped by a tramp in Paris last time I wore it...) But these are the risks you've got to take, all in the name of 'avin'-a-laff.

^ A prime example of me havin' a laff in 3/5 of the aforementioned wardrobe staples...


Admittedly, thrifting in my case has gone t o o  f a r, but there's a reason people love it so much. It's just so much more exciting than regular shopping.
Finding something you like amidst the chaos, finding that it actually fits and even looks nice, and then finding that it costs less than a cup of coffee, is enough to push a girl over the edge. Lord knows, I've emitted some inhuman squeals in my time upon finding a second-hand gem. The most common phrase you'll hear when me and L.T. get going is, 'We need to stop!!'
But we don't really want to be stopped.
The line between completely ugly and complete whale-of-a-time is e x t r e m e l y thin, and thus has become completely blurred. Old man loafers? Yes please! Floor sweeping gingham? Throw it my way! We began to fear that it really had become out of control when we stopped avoiding even the bra section of our local Croix Rouge... But turns out, old ladies have fun-as-fuck taste in lingerie! And it all goes in the wash before use anyway, so whether or not a tit touched it, it's all fair game. And it is a game- that's the trouble with it. Being as it is so cheap, you feel as though you can make risky choices completely guilt free. So what if you wear it once, and then realise that you look like a cushion?! It was one euro!!
When you find a little treasure in a second-hand shop you don't really have the luxury of toying with the idea, reflecting, and then making a sensible (ha!) decision. You either buy it right now or... never see it again (probably). Which, OF COURSE, causes some very questionable purchases. On my last trip to the Croix Rouge I swore to myself that I'd buy a pair of fucking-around-on-the-beach footwear, and N O T H I N G  E L S E. Nothing else, Silv, absolutely nothing else. Don't you dare even look in any of the other sections of the shop, you outrageous lunatic.
My luck was in (as it usually is), and I stumbled across a host of made-in-France, never worn, cutie little espadrille wedges, in a rainbow of colours (well... white, black, and red...) The white ones were the cutest- kinda patent with a closed toe and sweet little lacey ties, but they weren't my size, so see ya never! But the other 2 pairs were pas mal, and would both fulfil their purpose nicely. So I tried the red pair on... Nice. Tried the black pair on... Not bad. Red pair... aww cute! Black pair... Mmm versatile! Red pair... more fun!! Black pair... just be sensible for once on your life, Silv. And so the endless deliberation began... (When I like something I'd really, truly, honestly rather not know that it comes in other colours, because decisions like that really push me to the brink.)
And then... everybody else got involved. A pregnant girl with her mum started eyeing up my feet, touching the other pair right next to me, and instantly I panicked. What now?! What if somebody else wants what I want?! COMPETITION!! The mum started commenting on how nice they were, and instantly I thought, 'I'm just not having this. I'm not.' So I smiled, and was polite, whilst tightening the red espadrille's laces up my leg. IF YOU WANT IT YOU'LL HAVE TO FIGHT ME FOR IT! Then, one of the elderly women who volunteers there came over and got involved, saying, 'Oooh, don't they look nice? What a nice pair of shoes!', and various other malicious shit along the same lines. Well I knew her game. She was just furious she hadn't seen them earlier so she could've hidden them in the store cupboard for herself. HA! Well better luck next time! Tightened the black espadrille's laces on my other leg. Then some other bitch tried to get her claws in, saying, 'Oh, if it was me, I'd buy them both...' And at that point any sense of anything had been drowned in an overwhelming sea of well-if-this-many-people-want-them-I'm-just-going-to-have-them-all malice. So I bought them both.

Seriously though, what's wrong with me?

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Baywatch Beware!

Alright, so I've always liked second-hand shopping. Aint no shame! However, I used to be civilised about it, even a bit squeamish at times... My girl, P.R., likes to remind me regularly that the first few times she took me to 'Cow', our fave vintage shop in our university city, I used to scratch my way around the whole shop, delusionally whining that I was allergic to dead people's clothes. Since moving to Millau, that's a long-distant memory. Now, I have really gone onto a whole new level... justtttt out of control thrifting. So much so that I can't actually remember the last time I cut a label off a new item of clothing, or could wear said new item of clothing without having to wash the smell of closed attic off it before use.
Going to need at least six more cases to take all of my newly acquired treasures anywhere with me.
My newest acquisition is this silver swimsuit (there's just no stopping me; I did tell you): 

It looks pretty harmless, doesn't it? HA! That's where you're wrong. Not harmless at all- far from it. I'm going to Cannes and then Nice on a little Easter Vay-Kay with L.T. in just over a week, and we've been planning what we want to pack since our last trip. Now this little madam above ^ is definitely going to be coming along for the ride. It's about to be tits, crotch and other bits just all completely al fresco, but in the very best way. E N O R M O U S struggle getting her on, but now she's here to stay! Plus I'm so tightly encased in the silver siren that I might just leave it on all week to encourage me to be a Baywatch-ready babe for THE RIVIERA. 
Can't wait to wear it- and breathe in- all day long. I normally go for the teeniest tiniest, preferably strapless, ideally not-even-there, bikinis, for tanning reasons, but I doubt we'll have summer weather, so I might as well have a whale of a time in my shiny one piece! Now all we need is a yacht and some sun! Wheeeey!

Cafés and Canals

March 29th- (12:15pm)

(Little note I made on my phone.)
I’m sitting by the canal in S.A. (the town where I work), on my lunchbreak, ‘avin’ a bask in the sun. I usually eat at the canteen with the other teachers and then go for ‘coffee’ and a ‘chat’ at the cafe across the road. But I don’t actually ever have a coffee, because the very first time I went, one of the teachers offered to get me one, and upon realising that they planned to pay for me (something which makes me feel très awkward and uncomfortable), I panicked and said that I don’t drink coffee. And then as an afterthought added, ‘... in the afternoon...’ Ah shit. So now every time I fancy a coffee (at most moments of the day), I sneak it from the staffroom, sometimes drinking it in the toilet, and always feeling like a criminal if I’m spotted clutching a coffee cup. As for the ‘chatting’ part, I very often sit there in silence, because coffee conversations always lead to 2 topics: politics and children being misbehaved. Funnily enough, I don’t have very much to offer up in discussions on Sarkozy or Luca’s behavioural problems.

So the teachers were suitably apologetic today when telling me that I’d be eating on my own, whereas I was internally ‘wahoo’ing. Nothing is better news to me than knowing that I can have two hours off from forcing French chit chat out of my weary, unaccustomed English Rose mouth. In fact, I think as a little personal treat next week, I'm going to take my own food in and avoid the whole farce! YEAH! Lonesome lunches are my faves... Can do my lesson plans in the sun, or text L.T. (American BFF) with our usual dramatic problems ('just ate all the chocolate eggs I brought in for my kids' Easter egg hunt', or, 'one of the teachers tried out some English on her class and told them to "Close your trousers now!"', are prime examples of the shit we deal with daily.) Also, it's pretty nice to just be in silence and be normal for a couple of hours, and not be smiling manically at everyone, or replying to numerous 'HELLO's from all my 8 year old fans (it's been 6 months and they still say 'Hello' to me like they're the first child to ever think of it.) 
Anyway, two hours for lunch is literally ludicrous, but it's France summed up- soooo long and leisurely. I get to 1:45pm having forgotten that I’m even in school.

Fancy in France

Eya. So it would appear that I’m an aspiring ‘writer’... (And what better subject to tackle than myself- can bullshit about myself FOREVER.) However, after having received far too many ‘n’awww, good try, but no thanks!’ emails from magazines, varying from ‘Elle’ to ‘Good Housekeeping’ (panicked...), I have decided to take matters into my own hands. I am a writer- it’s the only bloody thing I do! I’m going to do it somehow, so this is as good a place as any to start.

On a recent trip to Paris with my American BFF, I tentatively tested the waters and said, ‘Maybe I’ll start a blog...’ Her instinctive reaction was, quote, ‘Your blog would be outrageous!’ And that was all the encouragement I needed.

I’m 21 years old (reverse the numbers and that’s closer to the age I actually feel), and I live in the South of France, in the less-than-happenin’ ville of Millau (known, if at all, only for its viaduct).

I’m here teaching English in a cutie school in an even smaller middle-of-nowhere town than Millau. Mais ne panique pas, because in just over a month’s time I’m going to go from being Heidi, making friends with the goats in the mountains, to being a city gal, confidently strutting onto the metro, briefcase (not sure...) in hand. IN PARIS. Can’t even write that without breaking into a grin/sweat. I have a job there, being a babysitter/English teacher hybrid, and I C A N N O T wait. I mean, it's going to be a disaster, because I’ve never even been able to find my way from one arrondissement to the next, but sometimes disasters are the best kind of fun. Fact is: disasterville or no disasterville, the next few months of my little life are bound to provide me with some stories to share... So share them I will!