A moment in time

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Do you ever feel nostalgic for a time or place that you have never actually experienced? That is how I feel about the punk movement and the years that followed it. The way people lived and thought back then intrigues me. I long for the music, the fashion, the culture. I crave it so deeply that not being able to travel back in time to see it actually frustrates me.

Yesterday, I watched the Australian film ‘Dogs in Space’. It screened at ACMI, in celebration of its 30th anniversary. The film takes place in 1978 Melbourne, during the height of post-punk culture. It focuses on the chaotic lives of a group of ratbags who live together in a dodgy Melbourne house. Their time is spent partying, taking drugs, staring at a TV, driving around recklessly and going to gigs.

There are many character in this film, and we see snippets of the lives and personalities of all of them. The most prominent character, however, is Sam. He is a drug-abusing musician, played by the late INXS frontman, Michael Hutchence. Sam appears to be in a constant state of drunkness, strange and unpredictable. He sings in the awful yet wonderful post-punk band, Dogs in Space. We see his relationship with Anna (played by Saskia Post) and the way it tragically ends.

The film feels like a documentary. It doesn’t even really have a plot, yet the way it captures the lives of the Berry street residents is both confronting and intriguing. It encapsulates the time so perfectly that it gives me that feeling of nostalgia, that frustration. I’m not saying I want to live in a shitty house, getting high and sleeping all day. I just crave the feeling of freedom and cultural immersion that these people had.

If you haven’t seen this film, watch it. The music, Michael, the atmosphere, and the history are reason enough.

 

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Memes to models: how Instagram is changing fashion

Two weeks ago, Gucci posted a series of memes to Instagram as part of a campaign to promote their new watch collection. Inspired by popular meme accounts, the iconic fashion house commissioned various artists to create these memes. They were all posted with the hashtag #TFWGucci (That Feel When Gucci).

Although it received mixed reactions, the campaign certainly brought attention to the brand. And why wouldn’t it? Our generation loves memes. If we see something that depicts an aspect of life in a funny way, we share it. Gucci’s campaign is just the beginning of a new form of advertising.

Fashion marketing isn’t the only thing that has been impacted by Instagram. The way consumers view the latest designs has also changed. In the past, the public couldn’t see designs until they were released in stores. Now, thanks to Instagram, runway shows are no longer exclusive. The professionals, celebrities and influencers who attend fashion shows share photos and videos of the show to their Instagram accounts. The recent addition of live streaming has taken this immediate access even further. Fashion houses are using these changes to their advantage. Chanel, for instance, uploaded a video of their own elaborate show for their 19.3 million followers to see.

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Instagram has changed the lifecycle of fashion trends. In the past, the public would look to the glossy pages of magazines to discover the latest trends. Now, trends start on the Instagram accounts of celebrities, influencers, or normal people that happen to have a unique style. This is because Instagram is free and readily available, unlike fashion magazines. As a result, designers have less power over trends and more competition in the form of influencers, who are paid to wear and promote brands.

The way scouting agencies discover models has also evolved. Rather than searching the streets, scouts are scouring Instagram to find fresh faces. This is because our Instagram accounts serve as an accessible digital portfolio of our lives. While this has opened up a world of opportunities for hopeful models, it comes with a downside.

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Unfortunately, a person’s follower count has become a major factor in getting booked, and it is now a requirement for models to have Instagram. Socialites such as Gigi Hadid and Kendall Jenner walk on runways and appear on magazine covers across the globe because of their massive follower counts. These models are essentially marketing tools, used to promote brands to their followers. However, whether these Insta-models qualify as supermodels is an ongoing debate.

Perhaps the most important way that Instagram is changing fashion is its use in addressing serious issues. Models, who are the literal faces of the fashion industry, are among the individuals using Instagram to voice their concerns. Consider Halima Aden, the first hijab-wearing woman to be signed to IMG Models. She is walking runways while empowering Muslim women on Instagram.

This message of empowerment is echoed by Adwoa Aboah, the model who founded ‘Gurls Talk’, a project aiming to challenge issues such as diversity and mental illness.

These women have huge follower counts and strong support bases, which forces the fashion world to pay attention. And, they certainly are. This year, the New York, London, Milan and Paris fashion weeks were more diverse for the Fall 2017 season than ever before. Meanwhile, activism in fashion is on the rise, and there is no doubt that Instagram has contributed to this.

Whether it’s through meme marketing or diversity campaigns, our social media-driven culture has impacted fashion. After all, fashion is a reflection of the times, and the times are constantly changing.

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OOTD: uni style

Melbourne has been getting very cold lately, so over the weekend I decided to go on a hunt for a new pair of black jeans. Unfortunately, the jeans I have at the moment just aren’t cutting it in the comfort department, which is very inconvenient because I pretty much live in jeans during the cooler months.

Moving on…I ended up finding the comfiest jeans that I have ever placed on my body in Just Jeans. They are even comfier than leggings. I am not kidding. They are the Amaze skinny jeans.

I already know that I’ll be wearing these to uni every day, so I thought I’d show you guys what I style them with. Here’s what I wore today:
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This is one of my go-to outfits. As you can see, my approach to uni fashion is casual comfort. My style is heavily influenced by rock bands from the 80s, the punk movement, and 90s grunge. My look can also be quite tomboy at times.

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Today I wore a casual striped jumper by Junk Clothing. I paired it with my favourite soft biker jacket that I have had since I was about fourteen, and finished off the look with some Adidas Superstars.

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This outfit can honestly be worn anywhere. Add a red lip and a heeled boot for a dressier Parisian chic look. Or, add Doc Martens, smudged eyeliner and a choker for a grungier vibe.

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album of the day

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Album: Kick

Artist: INXS

Year: 1987

Why I love it: Kick is one of those albums that boasts hit single after hit single. ‘New Sensation’, ‘Devil Inside’, ‘Need You Tonight’, and the legendary ‘Never Tear Us Apart’. It is a musical and cultural masterpiece. By 1987, Michael Hutchence has perfected his vocal talent. He belts out ‘Guns In The Sky’ in a true eighties fashion. Then, he changes the game with an alluring hush in ‘Need You Tonight’. Meanwhile, infectious guitar riffs and a punchy drum give the album a funky kick (pun intended) that sets it apart from your average rock album.

Favourite track: ‘Mystify’ – the piano, the clicks, the vocals, and those lyrics: I need perfection. Everything about this song gets to me. When it comes on I just want to stop whatever I am doing and dance. It is so simple, yet so sexy.

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self-care

This weekend’s events (or lack thereof) reminded me of the importance of self-care. Before I tell you why, let me explain that I live on campus at uni. It’s a pretty social environment, which suits me because I don’t like being alone for too long. However, I do need my own space, which I still have here.

Back to the story – My flatmates went home on Thursday, so I have had the flat to myself all weekend. I spent Thursday afternoon catching up with a friend who also lives on campus. That night I felt like pampering myself, so I did a facemask and dyed my hair. It was a very low-key, relaxing evening.

I had classes on Friday, which kept me busy for the day. I also had plans to go out that night. Unfortunately, they were cancelled. I knew I was in for a night alone. Great. Disappointed that nobody wanted to drink with me, I snuggled up with a glass (or three) of Kahlua and my laptop. I listened to about seven INXS albums, called my mum, and watched the latest episode of Riverdale. God, that sounds like a sad night when I type it out…but it wasn’t. I’m not sure if it was the comfort drink, the sound of Mum’s voice, the cheesy tv show, or the fiery 80s tunes, but I felt content. Emotionally satisfied.

On Saturday my friend came over to study. Naturally, the day turned into shopping, baking, eating fast food and watching movies. I can’t remember the last time I actually had a movie night with ‘bad’ food, but it felt good.

It is now Sunday morning, and I realise that a weekend of calm and rest was exactly what my mind needed. It has reminded me how important it is to just slow down. I feel like a lot of people, myself included, get caught up in a work/play mindset. If you’re not working, then you should be playing. If you’re not doing either, then you’re wasting time.

But that’s not how it should be. We need time to rejuvenate, to just be. I forgot how wonderful it feels to sit back with a drink and lose myself in my favourite music. I forgot how satisfying it feels to indulge in junk food while watching Charlie’s Angels (side note: I have made it my personal goal to learn all of Cameron Diaz’s dances from that film, so that I can bust them out at any given moment).

To put it simply, we need to stop restricting ourselves to a stressful lifestyle. I’m going to remind myself of that from now on.

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Friday night inspo

For this chilly Friday evening, I’m turning to a mixture of glamour, punk and grunge for inspiration. Think Kate, smudged kohl, and a Sex Pistol attitude.

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hair update

Last night in a spontaneous moment, I dyed my hair (this is what happens when my flat mates leave me alone for the weekend).

I was aiming for something a little more natural… but things did not go to plan.

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My hair turned an odd shade of grey.

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To be honest, I don’t mind it that much. I suppose it matches the gloomy weather.

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