Posts Tagged ‘Shopping’

Yesterday, I met up in town with one of my close friends, who I met during my Masters degree and with whom I share a love of books, bookish things and random things.

In the run up to this meeting, I popped into The Works to look for a present for my friend as it was her birthday recently. The Works has become my current favourite place to get some book bargains, and I spotted two cool little craft books in there which I just had to buy. It seems to have improved lately as I’ve found a few good deals in there recently! I don’t usually buy that many non-fiction books, aside from the occasional book on the English language, so this was a novelty for me! The Works is great for slightly obscure and random books on pretty much any subject!

So, the first book I bought was “Scary Cute: 25 Amigurumi Monsters to Make”:

“Scary Cute: 25 Amigurumi Monsters to Make” by Annie Obaachan (via Amazon)

This is the book I gave to my friend for her birthday! It’s full of projects to make using a type of Japanese crochet, all in the shape of cute little monsters! She loved it and wants to try out some of the projects!

I also bought another craft book for myself, “Stitch New York”:

"Stitch New York" by Lauren O'Farrell

“Stitch New York” by Lauren O’Farrell

This is a really cute little book on how to knit little projects relating to things you find, such as the Statue of Liberty (like on the cover!), hot dogs, the Empire State Building, and many other random things. I’m not that great at knitting, but I would love to try something new so this looks like fun!

I wasn’t supposed to be buying more books, but their stock is cheap enough to make it worth it! And I have the excuse of buying a present too!

So, that’s it, I’m not going to buy any more books now until I’ve read the ones I’ve already got!


Fashion magazines are not realistic. I treat them like they are fiction books with pictures. They are all fairytale dresses and Mad Hatter’s Tea Party-type outfits perfect for a good story, but morally wrong.

No-one can kiss a frog and return it to its human state, and even if they could, there’s no guarantee that they would be a handsome prince.

Frog (via Disney’s The Princess and the Frog)

The same idea can be applied to fashion: you can buy a fancy dress and wear it but there’s no guarantee that it will make you look and feel good, no matter how much you pay for it.

Those perfect shots of beautiful, skinny models with absurdly good facial bone structure and wearing diamond-encrusted, shiny, well-fitting clothes with a killer price-tag too? They took a long time to make: the right model with the right look/hair colour/eye colour/skin colour, the right outfit, the right lighting, the right make-up, the right hairstyle.

Chanel advert (via

Dressing up was fun when we were children: you could be Batman but also wear Superman’s cape at the same time; you could be a princess with fairy wings; you could dress up in your mum’s clothes and wear as much of her makeup as possible; you could go food shopping with your mum while wearing Spiderman costume and no-one would care.

Now, everything you wear has to “work”, otherwise people will judge you. If you don’t fit the clothes sizes in clothes shops, you feel ostracised by the fashion world (and by society). You envy thinner people, even if you are yourself skinny. You might have dieted everyday of your life since your teens. You might push the desire to be skinny too far and exercise compulsively, purge yourself or starve yourself, just to fit into clothing made for a shop mannequin.

Years ago, people made their own clothes to fit themselves or their loved ones, because you had to, or because you wanted something unique. Every item was hand-crafted lovingly. And it was part of everyday life.

Old sewing patterns (via Pinterest)

Now, paying someone else to make clothes for you is commonplace and we don’t have to time to make our own. We let others dictate what we wear, when to wear it, or how to wear it. It doesn’t matter how much you spend: if it makes you look better than anything or anyone else, then the cost is worth it.

But is it?

With the fashion world as it is today, the odds are that our clothes will be out of fashion in a few months, or even weeks. Then we find ourselves back at the beginning again.

I buy one or two key items in each season which will work with anything and which can be adapted to any season, that way I spend less money but feel comfortable in the clothes which I picked carefully.

Fashion is like a story: you pick out the most important bits which are useful to you:

  • In fashion, you can pick a leather jacket which will work with most outfits, maybe in black or brown.
  • In fiction, from Cinderella, you can pick out the message in the story: If you pretend to be something you’re not, it will inevitably backfire on you, so being yourself is usually the best thing to do, if you’re lucky, you might be appreciated for that.

Cinderella’s transformation (via Pinterest)

The spell wore off at midnight… (via

Fashion magazines are beautiful stories about that tiny percentage of people who look “perfect” but who have their own flaws underneath the image which they portray.


Life is too short to worry about fully conforming to the standards set by the fashion industry – be healthy and happy the way you are.

Reality is more beautiful than make-believe.

Book bed in Anthropologie (via the blog “Runs with Scissors in Suburbia”) -click image to access the blog.

I found this great bookish idea on a random blog post about the shop Anthropologie! Never thought of this before! I would love a bed made of books, and you wouldn’t have to get up to find a book!

Image found at