Desert Island Furcoat

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The Desert Island Discs archive has been online for a couple of years now, but it’s only in the last month or so that I’ve really got stuck into it like the goldmine it is. I think I listened to a few over Christmas and maybe spent some time listening to the people that I’m fangirlish about in the past, but I’ve now reached the level of obsession where I’ll download anything that they’ve ever broadcast. I’m powering through about four episodes a day right now. And there’s only 2,850 castways. Help.

There are lots of features by DID obsessives online – this Guardian one is good – and I don’t really believe that I can bring anything new to the table; I just really, really like it. You spend 40 minutes listening to somebody talk about eight pieces of their favourite music and, by the end, you’ve learnt a buttload. It might be about history, it might about politics or it might just be the more obvious stuff about that person’s life – but I’ve not found a boring one yet. Even when it’s with a boring person! Or the music’s shit! Get someone talking about a song they remember from childhood and next thing you know, you have them spilling about their troubled relationship with their dad in a way that most interviewers can only dream of.

For a massive ignoramus like me, the musical education is also invaluable. I often wonder when I’ll become a true grown-up and know lots about classical music, because even the dummies on DID seem to have at least two or three favourite pieces of classical stuff; an operetta here, a concerto there. What, you’re not au fait with classical? Jesus, grow up, Gibson! All I know about is Zadok the Priest, and only I got that from DID. Just look at the most popular tracks and artists! Who? What? Huh? Educate me!

Unlike most Desert Island Anoraks, I don’t have my own eight discs picked out and ready for the inevitable day that I get the call. As mentioned above, the misery of not having eight pieces of grown-up classical music to reel off is just too shameful. I mean, I really went off Nigella when she picked Wheatus and while I’d never stoop quite that low, my love of the Mike Curb Congregation just seems kinda embarrassing.

One thing I have considered picking is Sleepy Lagoon by Eric Coates… which is actually the theme for DID. Not because I’m just that meta, but because I really, really love it. (I do have my book picked though; it’s a PG Wodehouse short stories collection, naturally. And I’d be in good company.)

Anyway – here are some of my DID picks that you should give a listen. Or maybe just download all 500, like me. S/O to the BBC for making the archive completely brilliant with its suggested listens and searchability! <3 U Beeb, but why the hell haven’t you had Iggy on yet?

Morrissey - massive flirt, really funny, picks a great selection of NYC punk

Jessica Mitford - best of all the Mitfords, good anecdotes, chooses a lol luxury item… Debo and Diana are also on there, with Diana’s being notoriously fucking grim thanks to her Nazi-lovin’ ways

Hugh Laurie - every song he picks is great, if you like the delta blues as much as I do

Marlene Dietrich - because it’s Marlene bloody Dietrich!

Kathy Burke - funny, life-affirming, wonderful stuff

Ian Hislop - I just really like Ian Hislop. And it’s always interesting, as a journalist, to hear journalists being interviewed.

Alice Cooper - bloody love Alice and he’s a fascinating man with a fascinating history. His turn to religion in later life also makes for an interesting interview.

Cecil Beaton - Cecil Beaton!! How many interviews with Cecil Beaton have you heard? Exactly. He’s completely fascinating.

Clarissa Dickson Wright - man, has she had an interesting life. I thoroughly enjoy her attitude towards all the stuff that’s gone wrong for her.

Vidal Sassoon - because he’s the main man in my industry, his voice is like heaven and his life history is worthy of a movie (if there hadn’t been one already…)

BONUS MENTION: Barbara Cartland - why isn’t her episode available to listen? C’mon, I’m desperate for it.

[Picture: A cold day in Miami Beach, 1940 by Alfred Eisenstaedt]

Gothlife

my spirit animal is a goth teenager shirt

I posted this picture on Instagram over the weekend and it seemed to get more likes than anything I’ve ever posted, which was very nice but also taught me a few things:

1. Getting your boyfriend to take a photo of you makes for a way more successful end result than a photo taken by gurning into your laptop camera. This is presumably why I’ve never been given a blogger book offer.

2. Giving the popular t-shirt that you’re wearing a credit might be a nice idea.

3. It’s by Heather Gabel (but it looks like it might have sold out – was that you guys?)

4. Sunshine makes your hair look good; giving your hairdresser a credit is also a good idea in this instance.

5. THANKS FAYE!

6. You guys are nuts.

Thank Furcoat it’s Friday

1. Drunk in Love, the emoji version.

2. An easy-peasy-pizzay manicure.

3. What city skylines would look like without light pollution. Clue: ooooooh

4. A handy metalcore workout playlist.

5. Before Iggy Pop takes up residency on 6Music, Jarvis Cocker presents an entire show dedicated to the wriggling rock god. Tune in on Sunday, is gon be good!

6. The Goodhood Store‘s roundup of videos for International Women’s Day features pretty much every woman that I admire. So that’s awesome.

7. A closer look at the Chanel supermarket.

8. Weird Barbies that time forgot.

9. A Wes Anderson film/style retrospective.

10. Sweet Child O’Mine as a New Orleans-style jazz standard. Amazing! (Via Ben Kay)

Black and white and rad all over

I’m not sure when I stopped liking colour quite so much and decided that black and white was all I wanted to wear. Perhaps when I realised how old I’m getting? Black, white and Hawaiian print. And nothing else.

Taking care of the monochrome side of things this week is Stampd, who I discovered when I saw this Champagne cap somewhere. It’s going to be the latest addition to my ‘you wish you were Eva Chen’ collection.

Other black and white items from Stampd which I’d quite enjoy ownin

Stampd LA

Swimsuit; mug; beanie; shorts; jersey; badge

Isn’t everything just better in black and white?

Thank Furcoat it’s Friday

HIYA!

1. David Byrne doing a cover of Biz Markie’s Just a Friend. It’s amazing. Watch it, sing along, feel happy all Friday.
2. “Be wary of blue shoes.” Shockingly bad advice from Seventeen.
3. I want to hang each of these on my wall. Of my fantasy study.
4. Tabitha Denholm’s film about the Creole Cowboys is brill. “They’re like mods with their scooters,” she says. ” These dudes are so proud of their horses. They customize them, paint their hooves, plait their hair.”
5. Five decades of amazing Cher outfits.

Moving house

home

One of the main reasons things have been so quiet of late is because we’re moving house this month. After six years in sunny New Cross, we’re upping sticks and moving just down the road to Brockley.

Much as I’ve loved our little top floor roost over the years, I’m thoroughly looking forward to a fresh start in somewhere new. While the living room discos, kitchen views of St Pauls and general nest-like vibes of an attic conversion have all been brilliant, the lack of garden, noise and rotting sash windows are not such a blast. There’s also the colour scheme; lime green, yellow, sky blue, brown and jade might be some people’s palette of choice, I guess it’s safe to say it’s not ours.

Needless to say, we’re still renting. This is London, after all. But the place we’re moving to is wall-to-wall white, wood floors and massive windows and high ceilings. The only colours used anywhere are grey and black. Oh and green, IN OUR GARDEN. Much more like it. There’s not too much that can be done in a rented property, but that’s not stopped me planning the decorative doodads that I am planning on bringing to the new place.

All the design pics above are from my Pinterest and the other pieces are as follows:

1. UP Tray, Fine Little Day

2. Cactus Shower Curtain, H&M Home

3. Pia Wallen Crux Blanket, Haus

4. Stockholm Cushion, Ikea

5. Tom Dixon Copper Pendant, Heals (well, maybe one day)

6. Tom Eckersley poster – maybe a print of it exists at the current LCC exhibition?

PS We know Brockley pretty well, but any pro tips always welcome!

Thank Furcoat it’s Friday

(For the other old bastards who stay in on a Friday night. More on which to come, along with some other explanations, tomorrow.)

Emoji Irl

1. Emoji IRL. Eagerly anticipating the emoji poo reenactment.

2. Sheffield is number 22 on the NY Times list of places to go in 2014. Because of its pubs. This had better not make the rents go up, eh?

3. The Montague Arms is being reinvented. This is big news for SE London dwellers, lovers of taxidermy and beer fans. Although maybe not so much of the middle one anymore. RIP.

4. The Muppets take on internet commenters.

5. People reenacting viral gifs. Please can you find more of these for me?

6. WITCH (We In This Club are Hellcats), SWAMI (Subtle Women Are Most Intriguing), JERKS (Junior Elite Receive Kind Servicemen), ZANY (Zealous, Adorable, Nice and Yummy), JILTS (Jump In Line To Smooch). More about these brilliantly-named oldey-timey girl gangs can be found here!

 

Kay Kwok’s intergalactic menswear magic

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My contribution to London Collections: Men was all of two shows – although both of them (JW Anderson and YMC) were pretty awesome. I got 90s Sebastian Flyte vibes at JW Anderson and ‘I want to wear all of these clothes myself’ vibes at YMC.

Our men’s editor was doing all the real work, but one show that we both missed was Kay Kwok. When I saw the hair pics feeding through on Twitter, my curiosity was so piqued that I had to look up the entire show – and what a Jazz Man delight it is.

I know that the entire ensemble is really required to get the full effect, but I’d take any of those tunics and wear them as a dress. Black tights, spaceman boots and boom, you’re all set to play Alien Trilogy on your Sega Saturn (thanks Tumblr for the top pic, and Sega knowledge).

Jeremy Scott for Moschino is every bit as great as I hoped

jeremy scott for moschino

Pictures of Jeremy Scott’s first collection for Moschino appeared on Racked this morning and I’m thrilled to see that they’re every bit as logo-tastic and kitsch as I hoped they might be.

Over Christmas I found some amazing Moschino heels in a vintage shop in Sheffield – they were 80s pointy kitten heels, with the iconic Moschino gold letters placed around the ankle strap. Imagine! They were spectacular (and cheap), but there’s no way I’ll ever have the legs to pull off an ankle strap on a kitten heel so I just admired them for a while then left them for some lucky-legged student to pick up.

Anyway – just when you thought the Moschino logo letters couldn’t snake their way around anything else, here we get a rucksack, a snapback cap and a trompe l’oeil necklace on a sweater. Shout out too for that handbag made out of a mini leather jacket – better pic here on the Beckerman blog.

I’ve just highlighted my favourite bits but the collection has more variety than you might suspect. There are oversized varsity jackets in the form of dresses, tricksy lace slips and some chintzy floral dress coats which are almost a bit Luella, to my mind.

God bless Jeremy and Moschino for constantly flying the flag for fun fashion. See the lot here!

HairPomades: bringing stylish barbering to the masses

HairPomades.comhurr

I was really excited to be contacted by HairPomades.com at work this week – their marketing material is such a breath of fresh air! Cute little box of matches (which is part of a bigger social campaign that you can see here) and a nice reworking of classic barber pole colours for something entirely modern.

That was exciting enough (it was the first Monday back after Christmas, give me a break), but then I actually clicked through to the website and was equally impressed at the stock on offer. Much like the feeling I get when venturing into a fancy French pharmacy or going wild in the aisles at Walgreens when I’m on a work trip to the States, I just wanted to look at EVERYTHING. Sure, it’s all for barbers (and professionals at that), but all of the products look so appealing that I just want to stock up on the lot. And then display them proudly in my bathroom.

All of the brands that HairPomades stock are super-desirable – and hard to track down in the UK, in my experience. Murray’s is Andy’s favourite pomade from the States and I can never find it in England, while Blue Magic, Layrite (teehee) and Royal Crown are all new to me, but tick that same kitsch Americana box. Lucky 13 offers something different with its flash-inspired artwork, but again it has real shelf-appeal.

On a more contemporary design tip, Oak and Dr K are also new to me – but equally interesting and stylish. How much more impressive would that be on a bathroom shelf than a sad tin of Gillette? The best a man can get, indeed.

Finally, and most excitingly, is Suavecito, which has skipped its way merrily to the top of my men’s haircare product charts (yeah, I have ‘em). As well as a host of haircare products – more on which in a second – there is an absolutely incredible Black Flag inspired comb shirt, which I now decree as uniform for every barber I know. It’s brilliant.

HairPomades is the exclusive European distributor for Suavecito, which is an interesting American brand. Like many of the best products, it was created by a barber and his friend (J-Bird, no less) and caught on through barbershop word-of-mouth – again, like so many of the best products. Investment came courtesy of the founder’s severance pay and now look at it! A cult phenomenon with a way-cool skeleton logo. You can find out more about them here.

Like a Space NK for barbers, HairPomades gets the double thumbs-up from me for great products and even greater curation and design. If you’re a barber – or even a retailer, I imagine – you can find out more about being a reseller here.