The Educated Derelicts

Clothes | Creations | Cogitations


I don’t know if there’s a better feeling in the world than the total exhaustion you reach when you’ve followed your utmost convictions to their pinnacle. I want to lie down on white sheets, in the morning sun, and spend a few days reading, listening to lovely music, talking, slowly, with friends.





I’ve been wondering for a while now what it is about this poem that I like so much. At first I thought it was the appreciative simplicity of the subject (and it is). Then I though maybe it was the way the words carry you along as if you were the one talking to someone you might love (and, really, it is that too). I think, however, what I really love is how it exposes the contrast between art and life. Art is magnificent, to me, in all its forms: surreal, fantastic, idealistic, romantic. But living it is always a different thing entirely and I think this poem does what it talks about: it colours, vividly, moments and thoughts and things and feelings, but it also makes you realise that what you’re reading can never truly reflect what you might live. Which is a nice reminder of why we have to live, and why we must read as well. What do you think?


Having a Coke with you

is even more fun than going to San Sebastian, Irún, Hendaye, Biarritz, Bayonne
or being sick to my stomach on the Travesera de Gracia in Barcelona
partly because in your orange shirt you look like a better happier St. Sebastian
partly because of my love for you, partly because of your love for yoghurt
partly because of the fluorescent orange tulips around the birches
partly because of the secrecy our smiles take on before people and statuary
it is hard to believe when I’m with you that there can be anything as still
as solemn as unpleasantly definitive as statuary when right in front of it
in the warm New York 4 o’clock light we are drifting back and forth
between each other like a tree breathing through its spectacles

and the portrait show seems to have no faces in it at all, just paint
you suddenly wonder why in the world anyone ever did them

I look
at you and I would rather look at you than all the portraits in the world
except possibly for the Polish Rider occasionally and anyway it’s in the Frick
which thank heavens you haven’t gone to yet so we can go together the first time
and the fact that you move so beautifully more or less takes care of Futurism
just as at home I never think of the Nude Descending a Staircase or
at a rehearsal a single drawing of Leonardo or Michelangelo that used to wow me
and what good does all the research of the Impressionists do them
when they never got the right person to stand near the tree when the sun sank
or for that matter Marino Marini when he didn’t pick the rider as carefully
as the horse

it seems they were all cheated of some marvelous experience
which is not going to go wasted on me which is why I am telling you about it.

by Frank O’Hara


New Zealand Fashion Week 2012

It’s been a week of angry, skinny, stomping girls; a week of fantastic fashion, both on the catwalk and on the street; a week of fun, of frivolous discussion. New Zealand Fashion Week has come and gone for another year, and I must say I’ve been impressed. Despite a couple of notable absences from major players in the NZ fashion industry (WORLD) there was plenty of talent filling the gaps.

Trend-wise it appears that pastels, clashing prints, jumpsuits, and exaggerated silhouettes are here to stay for another season. I must say, I’m pleased on all accounts. Some were reworked, and in doing so improved: liam blurred the ever-present pastel mauve into a dusky, bruised grey that I hope to get my hands on in six months time.  Zambesi and Salasai have both played with drop-waist suit jackets that I look forward to see on the taller residents of this city.

I was fortunate enough to attend the RUBY | liam show, the first of the week. I was hugely impressed by the strength of the liam collection, especially. The colors, the movement they drew out of the fabrics, and the subtle cut-out details all made for a compelling start to the week. RUBY, the more trend-driven counterpart, came to the game with a playful collection reminiscent of modern-grunge.

Here are my favourites from the week that was.





Ingrid Starnes

All photos via


So it was late and we were dancing, like you do when you’re young and drunk and too beautiful to be still for long, and there was a breathy summer air moving amongst our legs, tangling in our hair, carrying our voices off into the night; we were laughing. Then somebody said we should have an adventure (although now I forget what kind) so, like music out of a singers lips, we tumbled off the deck and over the grass, past the fountain falling noisily into itself, our feet, bare by now, dewy with the dark, into the trees and over the road, under the city sky batting its lashes, up.

Up a fire escape, rusting to the side of the buildings, hands trailing along the bricks, toes gripping the iron, our hearts – or maybe just mine – thrashing around in our chests. (Or maybe just mine.) And somewhere between the high street and the harbor we lost the others, we lost them, and found each other, but that bit comes after the giggling and tripping, the pressing of bodies into doorways as cars drove past and the racing, with skirt swirling and pant-bottoms muddied, chasing down empty streets, up seven steps, then we paused.

Outside a door, so flat and glassy, reflecting the night, refracting our tiny mayhems back at us; it stole open and we stole in. To the still air. To the cool tiles. To the hotel smells. We stole through the foyer with tiny touches, and a fractious hysteria waxed in my lungs, swelling with every step closer to the far wall and I knew the same thing was filling up you; so I went ahead, quiet and curious, to the gilt door calling our names, while you followed, full of who-knows-what going who-knew-where.

And out the door was a courtyard, with trees in huge pots and twelve thousand white pebbles, glowing like twelve thousand tiny white moons; they flowed away from our feet in a maze, folding in on itself in a hypnotic twirl that I gazed at ‘til I finally drew my eyes away, by which time you were gone, hiding, pretending to be a tree and doing such a good job that it took me forever to find you, but when I did we sat down on a perfectly edged square of grass – breathing – two knees touching – eyes – eyes not quite meeting – and we spoke about how little time there was left, ‘til the world got it’s chains round our wrists and ‘til we forgot to notice, well, we decided there was not much time so the nights that there were should be tossed – up and away with the wind  – like confetti. We decided that everyone ought to have a chance to collide, nobody should ever have nothing to cry over, that everyone should fall, not the way of the world but the way they most want to.

That was exactly what we did, then.



Shakuhachi | Deadly Ponies | Twenty Seven Names | Givenchy | Zambesi | Neuw

pictures of fragile things


Maybe it’s the impending spring: the tiny, brave flowers peering out of the earth; people braving the cold with bared arms; the sun, pooling in watercolor perfection across the pavement. Maybe it’s just that feeling when you’re so busy for so long, then you take a moment – just the briefest of pauses – to look around yourself and wonder about what you’re doing or where you are. Everything feels very young right now. Everything is small and quiet and watching from a few steps back, rather than doing and going and deciding. It’s good, I think, to lean back every so often and notice life going on, before you step back into the torrent.




Under the layers

Is anyone else an avid Gossip Girl watcher? It never fails to spark some fashion-envy in me, and one of my favorite things is Blairs collection of beautiful slip, lingerie and robes. When the rain returns, I hope to be swanning around home in something small and sheer and black and beautiful – fortunately plenty such things have been catching my eye lately.

When it comes to undergarments I think the key is to opt for the subtly stylish rather than overtly sexy; ladylike rather than lewd. A beautiful lightweight robe, pajama shirt or soft knit will complete the look.

Local label Lonely Hearts are the NZ pioneers of lovely fashionable under-pieces. My favourites:

Australian label Hatsumi’s Laundry (discovered courtesy of KatherineIsAwesome) have also fast become favourites of mine.

And for an opulent pop of color, Ingrid Starnes has made some lovely pieces, some of which may be left if you get in quickly.


“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive. Then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”

– Howard Thurman

Isn’t this wonderful? And true? Of all the things that depress me the most, apathy is the most insidious. Anything that electrifies your mind is, I think, a good thing. Anything that wakens your nerves; that makes you think; that pulls a laugh from your lungs; that propels you into action in any way shape or form.


A new week starts tomorrow. Why not make it your mission – once, twice, every day, whatever – to get out and do something that makes your heart beat faster?


Wake up one morning this week and wonder about the rest of the world. What’s out there?


Live vicariously in the most humble of moments. Explore how alive you can be while sitting completely still. Pick up a book, lose your mind, and replace it with somebody else’s.


Pick a number between 1 and 24. Pick another between 1 and 7. The first is your time, the second your day. At said time on said day go outside; go outside no matter where you are, no matter what the weather is doing. Is it cold? Rainy? Good. Revel in being a part of something bigger and less predictable than yourself.



Nobody is going to push you into the rest of your life. Do it yourself.


Tell me! This week I’m going to come alive and make some magnificent memories. I hope you find something that makes you come alive as well.



To all things beautiful

Here is a collection of lovely things to sweeten our day. This was inspired by a touching post written by Marthe on The Freedom Experiment, on learning to recognize your own beauty. It really is one of the loveliest posts I’ve read, and those of you who already follow Marthe will know that such delights are characteristic of her blog.

There are some lovely flowers I bought as an end-of-semester treat; tea, beautifully served and more appreciated for it; one of the very talented Juliette Hogan’s new season dresses; and some wonderful woman getting her om on – something I hope to be doing more of over the next few weeks. Speaking of yoga and beautiful things, below is a gorgeous video that you must see; I believe it’s been making the rounds online for a while, but if you haven’t yet seen it, take a look.

Enjoy your week out in the beautiful world, friends.

Suit Up

Long time no see compadres! Life has been crazy and every second of my spare time has been filtered into either study or procrastination. Fortunately, finally, the semester is over and life shall return (momentarily) to normal. You know what I look forward to most? Waking up with enough energy (and time) to put together a fantastic outfit. I do not plan to leave the house in a tee shirt and jeans once in the next month.

Something I’ve been thinking about recently is man-style-lady-suits. I like them. I am seeing them on people who look fierce and fashionable and whom I aspire to look like also. I particularly like that these people are making them modern with fun patterns, new shapes and textures and surprising little accessories.

This lovely lady is keeping it classic with the red lippy and smart hat. It works.

I’m also liking the use of a onesie instead of the traditional shirt and pant, and the wintry plaid print.

I love the bright color of this one,  and how the soft lines reference the current trend for pajamas-by-day. The sharp shouldered jacket smartens up the whole look. I love it.

Karen Walker’s done some beaut pieces, which you can buy online now. This lovely ensemble is one:

Check out the lovely sites from which I got these pictures: the first is Vanessa Jackman’s blog; the second two Streetpeeper; and the last the Karen Walker site.