Wednesday, 22 May 2013

A(nother) Packing List for Cannes

Uma Thurman.  Nicole Kidman.  Justin Timberlake.  Michael Douglas.  Matt Damon.

In my suitcase?  All neatly folded and wrapped in plastic to protect them from the kind of wrinkles that Botox can't help?

No, not really.  My suitcase isn't big enough.  Besides - I didn't need to bring them because they were all already there, at the Hotel du Cap Eden Roc, where the stars and random Canadian interlopers like myself hang out during the Cannes Film Festival.

Instead, my packing list included:

- a Pinko ruched top, Jigsaw full skirt, Dior clutch and iBlues two-strap heels, seen here worn on its own:

or as an ensemble with Emma Watson and Sofia Coppola:

- an Apostrophe knitted top, Italia Independent glasses and Sacha Baron Cohen:

- a Joseph sequinned mini dress accessorised with Michel Quissy and Jean Claude Van Damme:

and a Sportmax Code leather and jersey dress, Chelsea leather jacket and Christian Louboutin:

Style File Followers Take Note:
- Imagine my embarrassment when I bumped into our old mate Christian wearing my iBlues two-straps.  No wonder Monsieur cut off my feet in this photo.
- For the record, iBlues (a subsidiary of Max Mara) was around way before iMacs.
- Remember Van Damme's breakout movie, Kickboxer?  Michel Quissy was the baddie.  (Although in my books, he's a goodie; J-CVD not so much.)
- The Pinko top is 8 years old and the skirt is about 10.  That makes them Vintage, right?
- Michael Douglas looked amazing in real life.  A real surprise.  If that's the result of work, I want his doctor's number.
- Also sighted were Kirstin Dunst (very sweet), Tamara Beckwith (everyone but my British followers are saying Who?) and Nick Foulks (ibid, unless you read Finch's Quarterly, which you must).
- Don't tell Monsieur but isn't it obvious that SBC and me were meant to be together?  I saw him at Cannes last year too.  It's a sign.

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Flying the Super Friendly Skies

After my previous post I decided to take the kind of stroll down nostalgia lane that YouTube paves so well and I came across this:

Style File Followers Take Note:
1. Now that you've stopped cringing: Bless her!  Right?  Bless Nancy and Nancy's good intentions and Nancy's perky attitude.  They sure don't make 'em like Nancy anymore.
2. Thank gawd they don't make uniforms like Nancy's anymore.  Those lapels look lethal.  An Al Qaida operative could easily stab someone in the eye with one of those.  (Although anyone wearing a neckerchief like that arguably deserves to be strangled.)
3. The largest airline in the FREE WORLD.  And when was the last time you heard anyone use that expression?
4. Does that mean Aeroflot was even larger?
5. A HOT DOG!  Pure class.

Thursday, 2 May 2013

Flying the Fashion Skies

3 months?  Has it really been 3 months?

I know I've gone off the radar before, but never for such a long time.  My apologies to all of you dedicated Style File followers - I can't imagine how difficult File withdrawal has been!  I've spoken to someone at The Priory in London about how to help you and they suggested that I ease you back into things slowly.  Which partly explains the brevity of this post.

The other part has to do with my new job which is awesome but totally time-consuming.  (Hence the dearth of posts of late, in case you need these things spelled out.)  I don't want to say what I'm doing just yet - I'd prefer to wait until it starts to bear fruit - but let's just say that anyone who really knows me will know it's the perfect fit.

To that end I'll leave you junkies on a high with this video featuring Miranda Kerr modelling Qantas' cool new look.

Style File Followers Take Note:
1.  So the question is, was the person I spoke to at The Priory a doctor or a patient?  Mwah-ha-ha...
2.  No, I haven't just spent the past 3 months as an inpatient, thank you. Although I would defeintely categorise the past 2 months as insane.
3.  It's interesting to see that Qantas has decided to bring back that rule from the pre-politically-correct era of only hiring slim stewardesses.  (I can't see a hefty munter wearing that dress - can you?)
4.  I wonder if people booking on Qantas will select their seat based on colour preference.  Right side of the plane for pink nuts.
5.  Someone who hasn't seen me in 20 years told me that I look/ed like Miranda Kerr.  At which point I unsubscribed from video Skype.  (The truth will remain our little secret, okay?)

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Chloé Toé

Okay.  The title sucks.  It beyond sucks.  It Sarah Ferguson sucks.  Trying to get toe to rhyme with Chloé in a bid to kick-start a post about Chloé shoes is pathetic.  I'm mortified.  But I'm doing it anyway.

As dedicated style file followers will recall, I attended Chloé's spring/summer ready-to-wear show last autumn and was struck by what the models wore on their feet.  Today, after months of wondering and wishing, I finally made it to the brand's newly opened flagship on Rue Saint Honoré to look at their shoes and see if what had caught my eye on the catwalk came in my size.

What I found wasn't just the collection of edgy metallic heels that originally drew my attention, but a whole array of chic yet comfortable summer staples.  From funky flats to chunky wedges, Chloé's shelves were lined not just with this season's must-haves but with every summer's simple necessities.  I was in awe.  And on the road to financial ruin.

In the end, I looked at the one viable credit card in my wallet and it gave me the finger, so I left with just a single pair of shoes and a vow to save my centimes and go back when Mr. Visa's in a better mood.

Behold Chloé's extremely versatile and easy-to-travel-with black leather flat sandal...

...which also comes as a two-tone...
...and with a heel.
I'm not entirely convinced about the "floating look" that the nude strap across the toes creates...
...but another colour like red or cognac will help the wearer look more grounded...

...and, of course, black rocks.
If you want a neutral lift, these laser-cut wedges go with everything...
...while these scalloped-edged flats are more down to earth...
...and come in a variety of neutral-ish colours including black, which rocks.
Finally, as an alternative flat, these "proper" ballerinas are perfect for more feminine dresses...
...and my yoga bottoms, which is how I'm wearing them now!

Style File Followers Take Note:
1. You remember the whole Fergie toe-sucking episode, right?  Or are you lucky enough to have expunged that from your memory?  Sorry if it all comes flooding back now.
2. I feel the need to justify this post before anyone thinks it was paid-for (which it definitely wasn't): Over the years I have spent hours if not days looking for and failing to find great summer footwear basics.  To find them all in one place was nothing short of a miracle.
3. Next miracle would be for my credit cards to work.
4. I love these ballet slippers!  Far more sophisticated than sloppy Repettos.  And just the right amount of toe-cleavage.
5. I almost forgot!  The cool metallic heels that originally tickled my fancy can be seen on Chloé's website.  If you're going to a wedding this summer, consider a pair from this collection: the fat stacked heels won't sink into a wet lawn like your friend's stilettos.
6. That last comment was intended more for my female followers, fyi.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

A Question of Taste

Some people have a different relationship to food than others.

Some people regard food simply as sustenance; a nutritional requirement which can sometimes be made tastier by the addition of salt or chocolate.  While the quality of what they eat may be important to them, people of this ilk are usually blasé about the latest restaurant opening and keep their home cooking basic.

My mother is such a person (although she sure made a mean potato latka when I was a kid). Monsieur is too. That's not to say that people like them don't like food; they just don't seem to have a strong emotional connection to it.  They can take it or leave it.  (And the buggers tend to be slim.)

I, on the other hand, have the second kind of relationship with food: The passionate kind.  I love it.  I love to cook; I love to try new restaurants; I love to hate bad food and I love to share my love of food with other passionate people.

My love is so strong that I have actually been able to file the flavour of certain dishes to memory, which I can recall in my thoughts the way someone with a photographic memory can tell you if the sun was out on October 23rd.  Stored in the microfiche of my mind are:

  • the lobster galette starter at Les Ambassadeurs in The Crillon Hotel in 2000
  • a brilliant bouillabaisse at Restaurant Bacon in Cap d'Antibes in 2002
  • the truffle macaroni at Le Petite Maison in London in 2007
  • some sourdough toast spread with Bretagne butter and shaved black truffles (I do like my truffles...) made especially for me by the great chef, Christian Constant, at Violon d'Ingres in 2010

Then, in 2012, a meal came along that nearly banished this illustrious list to the bottom of my brain.  It was so good; so mind-blowingly amazing; that my mouth is watering and threatening to short circuit my keyboard as I type:

  • Chicken Waffles at The Drake Hotel in Toronto

I think it was the utter un-Frenchness of the dish that called to me that day.  (I'm pretty sure it can't be found in Paris.)  I didn't even know that Chicken Waffles existed, but my bff and hostess that brunch (thank you, Megan!) said that it was fairly common in The States.  I checked, and sure enough there's a page in Wikipedia:

And OMG, were they good:  Crispy yet tender, savoury yet sweet, all bound together with the tang of sour cherry compote and the refreshing chill of sour cream.

We're eating at Paul Bocuse's famous 3 Michelin starred restaurant near Lyon next week.  Entre nous, I'd rather fly back to Toronto for another plate of these.

Style File Followers Take Note:
1. The second kind of relationship with food - my kind - should not be confused with the third kind - the fattening kind - where the person consumes like an indiscriminate vacuum cleaner, sucking up junk-food, small children and anything else that might be deemed edible in their path.
2. Statistically speaking, a large proportion of these people live in the southern States of America, where, according to Wikipedia, the consumption of Chicken Waffles is rife.
3. I don't care if I've shot my foodie cred to hell with this post.  I love food.  But I love Chicken Waffles more.
4. Your very own plate of Chicken Waffles can be found here:

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Mean and Lean in 2013

So here we are.  2013.  We weren't supposed to make it past 2012 yet 2013 is what it says on the Les Chiens en France calender that my best friend gave me for Christmas and that I'm now obliged to hang in our kitchen even though, entre nous, the dogs featured are hardly as adorable as my own. (You know what I mean.)

But that's not my point.

My point is that time flies.  Quickly.  I haven't posted a Style File since LAST YEAR.  Lots has happened in the interim; too much to cover in a single post in the time I have to write it.

I do, however, have enough time to share with you this new brunch menu from a restaurant here in Paris.  I received it via a very well-connected connection who doesn't want the word to spread since this place is impossible to get into as it is.  But since my blogger stats tell me that Pepita Style File followers are largely from The States, Canada, Britain and Australia (I think that's you, Giselle), I'm pretty sure that the few Paris-based readers who see this menu won't cause a run on the joint.

Run away; perhaps.

Style File Followers Take Note:
1. Once you saw the heading People Meat, I bet the words Meat Balls looked more menacing than usual.
2. That would be Gianni's coglioni and Juan's cojones, fyi.
3. That would make the Philly Cheesesteak too gross to contemplate.
4. Oddly enough, one of the movies shown on French TV during the holidays was Soylent Green.
5. "Where the people meet... face to face, dance cheek to cheek..." No matter how you spell it, people get eaten in that song.
6. I would like to take this opportunity to say a personal hello to, according to google analytics, my single Style File follower in Djibouti. 
7. Make no bones about it: Le Beef Club is a very good restaurant with amazing steaks and a groovy cocktail lounge in the basement - and this is without a doubt the best looking brunch menu I've ever seen in Paris.  So if you're in town, go on and try it.  Just don't tell too many people: I suspect that a little cannibalism among friends might lead to a shortage.