films

Gentlewoman style: At home with Phyllis Wang



Phyllis Wang by Elise Toide from The New Garconne - How to be a Modern Gentlewoman

I can’t remember if I told you, but I’m working on my next book!

It’s going to be beauty-focused and as part of my research, I’ve been re-reading my last book, The New Garconne: How to be a Modern Gentlewoman. Weirdly – or perhaps not – I haven’t had much need to revisit it since it was published in 2016. But like most books, when I do re-read it, it’s interesting to notice the parts that have a new or different relevance.

I loved interviewing comedienne Phyllis Wang. She was one of the last people I approached and was recommended by my then commissioning editor, Camilla. I was looking for women who embodied the ‘gentlewoman’ aesthetic and values of shopping consciously yet with their own ‘garconne style’ twist. Phyllis certainly veered to the eccentric end of the scale, which was totally fine! (more…)



Cut and paste: Peter Beard (updated)



Peter Beard collage

If you know me, you’ll know I’m a collage freak. Ivan Chermayeff, Robert Rauschenberg, and the master of it all, Peter Beard. Here’s an old Nowness short film by Derek Peck, showing the artist at work discussing his craft and his love for nature. Watch it here. (more…)



Escapism



Richard Avedon Nastassja Kinski and the serpent

A must-watch film if you’ve never seen it, the 1996 Richard Avedon documentary, Darkness and Light is pure escapism.

If you only have five minutes, watch the scene at around 21 minutes where Polly Mellen describes the legendary Nastassja Kinski Vogue shoot (above) involving a serpent’s kiss. Her storytelling is almost as dramatic as the shoot itself. (more…)



The culture of fashion: Seberg style



Seberg film poster with Kristen Stewart

Top of the watch list, if only for the hair and ‘fashions’. No seriously, Seberg, a thriller based on actress and civil rights supporter Jean Seberg’s persecution by the F.B.I looks like it’s worth a watch and if nothing else, will bring her name to a new generation of style seekers.

Jean Seberg was a major garconne style icon for me in the 90s and everything about the cult Jean-Luc Godard film, Breathless (*cough* not least co-star JP Belmondo) is beyond cool. (more…)