Monday, 15 March 2010

Say it with pillows, and hats, and bags and .......

The Ramones.

I have just spent the most amazing weekend playing beautiful music and hanging out with almost virtual strangers whose hospitality blew my tiny mind, and made me remember fleetingly that not everyone is a London commuter. Not everyone is filled with a murderous rage that would happily see them throw a complete stranger under a bus for walking slowly in front of them with a bag on wheels at rush hour (okay that was me). So not everyone is as secretly evil as me.

It's cheesy as hell to say that the weekend made me realise that there's a lot of greatness in the world - but what the hell, I'm feeling cheesy kids, I'm feeling drunk auntie at her favourite niece's wedding cheesy. Hell, if you were here right now I'd give you a big sloppy beardy whiskey breathed slobber on the forehead and sing at least one verse of Wonderful Tonight - or at least I Will Survive.

And it's whilst still in this slightly odd mood, riddled, as ever, with more enthusiasm than talent, without further ado - let me introduce this month's task.

This month I'm going to be tackling a massive concept which pisses me off for a variety of reasons. I'm going head to head with the fashion industry. Obvious, yes, but valid also I believe. I'm going to list my reasons anyway:

1. The fourteen year old girl ideal ….Wow look at the beautiful clothes! what clothes? Oh the handkerchiefs hanging off that hungry looking fourteen year old with the blank expression. Hmmmmm. Yeah yeah, at London Fashion week this year they had plus size models. Yes ladies, plus size models. These well groomed ladies were at least a size TEN! Can you believe the disgusting displays of gluttony on offer?

Now I'm not having a go at people who are naturally thin. Some of my best friends are naturally thin - probably because I steal their food when they're trying to get to the table, but either way…. I'm having a go at the people who think that they should define beauty by shoving boobless, hipless, tummyless, blank expressioned white things in front of our faces. Now leave those little girls alone - they have homework to be getting on with, stop dressing them and leave them to work through their 30 seconds to Mars t-shirts phase, tasselled skirt and waistcoat phases by themselves so they've grown out of it by adulthood, like chicken pox.

2. Stinking capitalism…..
Primark doesn't piss me off because it makes a generation of boring clones, it doesn't piss me off because it believes that clothes that last more than twenty minutes are counter productive or because it is without a doubt the scariest place on earth to visit unless you are a ten foot mega robot with lasers for eyes, or someone's mum. The thing that really pisses me off about Primark is that it's pretty easy to make cheap when you can exploit poorer countries to do it. It's not just Primark, they're an easy target. International capitalism likes poor countries, you can get brown people to make all of your stuff without all those pesky laws that say you have to pay people a living wage, or treat them as if they were humans. The UK population is pretty skint right now too, so it's next to impossible to buy cheaper clothes that haven't injured someone along the way. And for some reason that pisses me off.

3. It's not political, it's Primark -
Okay this is a first world problem - but if I see another vacuous topshop twat in a Ramones t-shirt I am going to get really mad.

So what are you going go to do about it big shot?

Fuck you capitalism. I'm taking my ball and going home. My first task is my tiny way of kicking a bit of sand at the big scary pooman's face. I'm going to take boring high street clothes and make them into useful and interesting things.

The task is going to fall into a few separate parts - the first part is going be my little dig at logos, the second will be my laugh at the transient and slightly pointless nature of fashion… and the third I haven't thought of yet so I'll have to pontificate and come up with something convincing.

I'm going to buy high street schlock and make art, or at least useful items from it. I'm going to sew like I've never sewed before. Like a cross between Scarlet O'Hara and Maria Von Trapp, but my curtains will be the discarded booty from our own precious high street. Then I'm going to gift my creations and hopefully bring a smile to someone else's face (be it sarcastic or otherwise.)

I'm also imploring everyone I know to get involved, to join in this little creative dig at the world of capitalism. If you have the time, the energy or the whatever, feel free to go to your nearest charity shop, find the nearest pair of culottes or global hypercolor t-shirt and make it into a useful pillow, a shopping bag or just cut out the letters in the logos to make the word TWAT. I've put some of my favourite links to crafty type websites up here, so go and scout for some inspiration. Just send me your before and after pics.

I'll be back tomorrow with before pictures. TTFN.

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