Isn’t it Romantic? A Valentine’s day muse.

‘Isn’t it Romantic?’ is the tune David Larabee, (William Holden) had playing as attractive party guests were often seduced by him, in their tennis pavilion, in the Paramount movie ‘Sabrina’.

Sabrina Fairchild (Audrey Hepburn) fell for his tactics, even knowing it was his practice and not really a special thing for her, alone.

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For me romance is always Chanel!

Never was her mythology so plundered for the sake of fairy tale than in the Audrey Tatou/Orient Express short. Every camera angle, every lighting effect, each costume, every look, shrieked of passion. It was an extravagant vehicle to sell No.5.

One of Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s small masterpieces, it’s story, about danger, longing and delayed love at first sight, is the most potent Valentine’s day two minutes we could watch.

But there is something enchanting about this time of year. The birds are singing, the light is longer, and we can lightly let our thoughts turn to thoughts of holiday train travel.Jean-PierreJeunet

Art for Fashion’s sake!

LEONOR Fini, the avant-garde artist who Christian Dior exhibited in the gallery he ran in early 1930s France, before becoming a Fashion designer, is the inspiration behind his label’s current haute couture collection.

Surrealism and the dreams of women are appropriate for Dior’s new Maestra, Maria Grazia Chiuri’s 2018 Spring designs.  Chiuri is said to be fascinated by how Fini used clothes and extravagant headdresses to “produce” her identity.

“She used her image to be regal and powerful. Surrealism speaks about dreams and the unconscious, and often about women’s bodies. It’s very close to fashion,” Chiuri tells us.

She is using Surrealist symbolism—the black-and-white checkerboard runway, and the bird cages and faux plaster casts suspended over it, to frame her collection. Stephen Jones delicate eye masks are in homage to Peggy Guggenheim. Guggenheim also  exhibited Fini in her 1943 show, ‘Exhibition of 31 Women Artists.’

Speaking of the difficulty women have to be taken seriously, Chiuri comments on why solemn black is chosen by designers and the MeToo campaigners. However her feminism allows her to move on, “We have to think about dreaming,” she suggests. “In a way, it [haute couture] is our business. But if you never dream, you don’t think that something negative can change.”

BLING FOR BREAKFAST

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SINCE watching ‘Breakfast at….. I absolutely love stories about the famous New York jewellers.

Here’s one for record collectors!
‘Tiffany & Co. posted a rebound in its holiday, (Christmas) sales, helped by a new home and accessories collection that included $90 black pencil holders, $275 silver shaving brushes and $450 rulers!

Several of the items, such as the pencil holders and rulers, sold out on the company’s website. Some of the highest-priced products are still available, including a $9,000 sterling-silver ball of yarn and a $10,000 bird’s nest with three porcelain eggs in Tiffany blue!

What a contrast to the story of Holly Golightly, when Audrey Hepburn, playing the role, had a five cent cracker prize monogrammed at the store!

Cowardly counts, devious debutantes, and gangrenous greed!

I’ve moved spaces which made it tedious to read, I thought.

Cinema Fashionista

YESTERDAY’s Daily Mail nonsense about Princess Margaret, rubbish so last century it is surely designed to draw attention from the real villains now appearing on Netflix in The Crown: pernicious politicians, cowardly counts, precious princes, quivering queen-mothers, philandering presidents and the rest.

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Margaret, the Queen’s younger sister who died in 2002, was a delightful approachable person. When I met her it was around the time this photograph was taken.

I’ve chosen this image because the story she told me included both her children, David Viscount Linley  and Lady Sarah Chatto. Princess Margaret was visiting a Haberberdashers Aske school in Bunbury, Cheshire and I was reporting it for the Liverpool Daily Post.

Unless she had been an accomplished diplomat and unpretentiously egalitarian the visit would have been an embarrassment on more than one front.  As she arrived a teaching member of staff, lined up to greet her, decided to make…

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Campaigning in heels!

AT last night’s Golden Globes women with voices stood up and were counted.

Action, through TIME’S UP is much delayed but thank heavens it’s happened now. I’m guilty of a lack of commitment to progress and change, myself.  I knew about unemployment in the north east for 25 years. I’ve dealt with snide sexual comments and vulgar come-ons for years without making much fuss.  Brexit and serious sexual harassment are the results of  this sort of uncaring ignorance.

Time’s Up is an initiative and legal defence movement  to support women in various industries dealing with sexual harassment.  It was launched with an open letter signed by hundreds of Hollywood women and published January 1. Meryl Streep, Shonda Rhimes, Reese Witherspoon, Ava DuVernay, America Ferrera,and Lena Waithe are among the founders, and still more stars publicly lent their support to Time’s Up following its announcement.

Let’s hope more of us will be encouraged to stake claims and speak up for equality.

They did still look absolutely gorgeous, though, don’t you think?

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Screens, Dreams and Hollywood hell!

STANLEY TUCCI was a delight in The Devil Wears Prada and I can safely say his performance as Jack Warner in Feud is another tour de force.

It’s a cameo role, in some ways, which probably shouldn’t be described as a tour de force but you feel that only Tucci could make the monster bearable!

“You want to be true to the piece, number one, and you want to be true to him,” Tucci says. “Being true to him is just being this outwardly very charming, fast-talking, well-dressed fella — and then behind the scenes he’s a ruthless misogynist.”

The Los Angeles Times celebrates his performance with the headline, “As a misogynist studio head in ‘Feud,’ Stanley Tucci spotlights a sexist Hollywood.”

Tucci has an extraordinary gift. As the camp, perfectionist, company-man, top stylist in ‘Devil‘ he transforms into a caring, mentoring friend to the bullied Andrea (Andy) Sachs (Anne Hathaway). In Feud: Bette and Joan, he has a searing humanity, not shaken off course even through a lens of towering greed and control.  It’s quite wondrous. FEUD: BETTE & JOAN -- Stanley Tucci as Jack Warner. CR: Kurt Iswarienko/FX.

I watched all eight episodes yesterday!