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By: Mike Mills

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Hunting down the Facehunter

Today was a pretty exciting day.
However, it began with a rather slow start, due to intense partying activities of the previous night. A night in town, out and about, that involved heavy dancing and stiletto performance – which wasn't so easy for all of us. But we looked fabulous, and that's all that matters, no?

I woke up with a dry mouth and painfully sensitive eyes that could barely endure the sunlight that was fiercely shining its way in through little peeks in my curtains.

Sometimes 'the morning after' can be so much worse when you go to bed too late, even though you didn't go totally out of your mind with the alcoholic beverages. Beverages you so desperately craved for only several hours earlier, but that now – only by the thought of another – make your stomach turn upside down and inside out. Boy, they turned me.

But then I quickly remembered what day today was. Not my birthday, nor my last day before summer holiday finally kicked in. No, none of the above. Something FAR more exciting. Today was the day I would meet Mr. Yvan Rodic. Or, perhaps better known as The Facehunter.

A couple months ago, I finally bought his book, as a present to myself. And when on his blog I read that he was opting to go to Amsterdam, I quickly send a reaction to this post, asking him to 'please, please, pretty-please' come and pay our lovely city a visit. And he did! From 15.00 – 17.00 hrs he would be present in the American Book Center (ABC) at the Spui on the 29th of May, where he would be signing his books. I asked my friends to come along, but some were too busy with sleeping and dealing with their hangover, others were simply doing something else. Therefore, with a pounding heart I went alone. I must admit, I am not one of those persons that loves spending a day in town on her own. I like talking to someone about what I see outside, and discussing why polkadots are so 2009 and stripes very 2010 (though I'm actually already so over this stripey nautical look; it's been covered everywhere now).

Anyway, today I had no other choice than to go alone. I entered the ABC and saw a line that didn't scare me too much to run off. (God, I do sound like some sort of paranoid freak that cannot undertake any activities by herself, this is not the case, but I was just a bit shy and felt very aware of myself; probably nerves too). After what seemed like an hour, (which I later found out was an actual hour) it was my turn to talk with Yvan. I had noticed that he seemed very interested in every fashion victim that came to see him, and he definitely took his time to chat with every single fan. He asked a lot of questions, he seemed genuinely interested and he really wanted to write something personal in his book.

Yvan Rodic [source: yvanrodic.blogspot.com]

[Confession]This was the first time ever I went to a book signing, thus I am not completely familiar with how these things normally go, but I can imagine writers to just be in a rush, scribbling down their name, whilst impatiently looking at the next 'victim'. To be honest, that's what I expected from today too, but – as said before - none of this happened today. When it was my turn I started off mumbling and stumbling, and blattered a bit about what I study and what I love to do. He was very kind and we talked about his visit to Amsterdam, his travels, and the cities he finds most inspiring. He told me that New York is a bit too polished for his like. “It's a great city, but there's not much room for new ideas. It's full of galleries, but the actual scene where interesting art or fashion is created can be found in LA. People might not say that easily, as LA is best known for their blonde bombshells and the beach, but it is an extremely inspiring place. It lacks a city center, so people just rent cheap studios somewhere in LA, and create new and interesting ideas.” He also liked the Scandinavian countries a lot, and insisted on their personal style and their freshness. He claimed Berlin wasn't so fresh, just a mere copy of the Scandinavians. By telling him that I was just there and that I liked the pure and rawness of the city, he answered:”Yes, that might be so, and it's definitely a nice place to go to for a couple days, but how many interesting people have actually come from Berlin? People with new ideas and concepts? Amsterdam, on the other hand, has lots of designers, architects, illustrators and photographers that are very successful internationally.” I nodded, and wished only for the sixth time that I had something more clever to say then: “Ah, that's so interesting, I never looked at it that way.”

He also asked me if I'd liked being a Dutchie. I told him I'd rather be something more exotic, but then he told me Holland might not be a warm country, it's considered special to meet someone Dutch as there are only so many, compared to other countries. After a while we had to stop talking since people behind me started getting restless. I wished him a happy stay in Amsterdam, gave him my blog address (you never know!) and walked off with the smile of an insane person.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Flirting in the rain

Have you ever had the feeling people were staring at you? I'm not talking about that freaky 40-year old man wearing white sports socks in his slippers from round the corner, but the feeling as if everyone is raising their eyebrows at you. It's as if you've got a huge yellow stripe of paint on your forehead, and people are afraid to say anything, but they can't help but look either. Normally when this happens, I'm on my way to school, biking over the Amsterdam canals and trying to avoid angry and highly insane bus drivers (don't even get me started on that one).

I quickly think back; any toothpaste on my mouth? Lip check: nope, no toothpaste.

Did my skirt blow up by the wind? Bum check: no, all good.

Any traces of other unidentified objects that I'm unaware of? Quick body check in glass window - no, that's not it either.

I do have to say the looks on peoples faces slowly change from: what the hell was she thinking this morning?! - to: that's a really interesting outfit, hm, I have something like that too...It might look nice with my flower top/biker boots/red Ray-Ban clubmaster.

So, on any normal day, when I arrive at school and I've had that strange feeling, I try to fiercely turn my back to those that - clearly - just don't understand what fashion means, and embrace the ones that do get me.

You might ask, why this - rather long - introduction?

Well, last week I had one of the above mentioned moments. I was wearing my new black dotted tights with my lovely rose printed skort (short + skirt), a white tee and my fave wedges. It was raining, but that wasn't particularly bothering me, as I felt deeply in love. With my outfit, that was. I was crossing one of the many bridges that run over the Amstel river, and saw this incredibly hot dude unloading a truck. God, that really sounds like he was some pikey truckdriver, but no, have I ever longed for sweaty, half naked muscled mover boys? Ehm... actually, coming to think about it...

No! Stop, this is distracting. Ok. So, I saw this incredibly hot guy unloading a truck and crossing the street. He turned his head and gave me THE LOOK. I smiled my loveliest smile and very content with myself I continued my way to school. (for you Dutchies: waanzinnig in m'n nopjes!)

But, arriving at school, people kept on staring. That was a first! Had I gone too far with my outfit this time? As I entered the school, I quickly glanced in the glass of the hallway doors. That boy wasn't in love with me, nor with my outfit. I suppose he just thought I was the most random person he'd ever seen in the pouring rain. With my sunglasses still on and that idiotic smile on my face I must've looked like a total freak. Well, at least a stylish freak, I thought with red cheeks, embarrassed at the thought of that guy laughing over me. I never received so many compliments on my outfit by my school buddies as I did that day, and my teacher even asked me to be her personal shopper. And when at the end of the day the sun started shining, I could wear my sunglasses on my way home without any fear. Yay!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Grow up, but stay a kid

I am working on a concept for school in which I want to give grown ups a youthful and playful time as a revisit to their inner child. This video is interesting as inspiration.
            Will adults engage with their environments like children do when given a playful opportunity? This public space intervention involved a swing, a bus stop and some candid camera work.

For some reason I cannot show this video in its normal size on my blog, so perhaps better to click on it and view it on youtube. 
         71% of adults used to play on the streets when they were young. 21% of children do so now. Are we designing children and play out of the public realm?
       This project is a study into different ways of bringing play back into public space. It focuses on ways of incorporating incidental play in the public realm by not so much as having separate play equipment that dictates the users but by using existing furniture and architectural elements that indicate playful behaviour for all.

       It asks us to question the current framework for public space and whether it is sufficient while also giving permission for young people to play in public.

Play as you go, Bruno Taylor, graduate Central Saint Martins
Make sure to check out his blog, if you're interested: www.bigbrudesign.co.uk
(Info found on: www.designverb.com)

Friday, May 21, 2010

It's a mess; I am so full of stress!

No time to sleep or stare. No time to chat or joke. No time for drinks or lunch, no time for Vogue or fashiolista.com - not even time to freaking shop! The past days were filled with only one thing: my studies. The coming six weeks have been described by former firstyears as "just plain hell, without one free minute, and living on the edge." Another girl adds: "It will break you down." And with a slow and sinister voice: "Only the thoughest will survive." We have to come up with a new brand, something that embodies your vision on life and that is fresh, fashion-forward, and super 2010. My head is spinning, so I think I have to stop staring at my screen (as Photoshop and Indesign have made my eyes look like two glowing little apples). Just one more thing I wish to share: Facehunter is coming to Amsterdam to sign his books in the American Book Center! He will be coming on the 29th of May at 15.00 (check Facebook to see the invitation). Ah, cannot wait...

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


What's the stupidest thing you've ever done?

- Painting a little cupboard in my room with my hair down. The result of my burst of creativity and confident 'i-don't-need-a-man-for-this'-attitude: a beautifully mint green eye-catcher, and bright streaks in my hair for weeks. I am not turning grey people - stop staring!

Monday, May 17, 2010

I heart...

... clever solutions for broke students

Sunday, May 16, 2010


Heerlijke omschrijving van m'n nieuwe Mac Sleeve; moest ik gewoon even met jullie delen!

De Fatboy® undercover is jouw eigen trendy camouflage voor alle spullen die zachte bescherming nodig hebben. Deze hoes heeft twee karakters. Naar de buitenwereld toe gedraagt hij zich als een superster die gezien wil worden. Maar weggestopt in je tas komt de ware aard van undercoveragent naar boven. De dubbel gelijmde stof is sterk als Kevlar en heeft het zachte karakter van suède. Undercover XS en S zijn de perfecte beschermengelen voor je iPod en iPhone, terwijl M en L groot genoeg zijn om je MacBook 13” (M) of 15”en 17” (L) in op te bergen. Maar de Fatboy® undercover is ook heel erg politiek correct tegenover producten van andere leveranciers ...

I heart...

... dreaming of fireflies

You would not believe your eyes
If ten million fireflies
Lit up the world as I fell asleep
Cause they fill the open air
And leave teardrops everywhere
You'd think me rude, but I
Would just stand and stare.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Thursday, May 13, 2010

I heart...

... acting young and loving it. Release your inner child!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

I heart...

... Berlin mentality (and Chanel obviously)

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Vespa move over, here comes Mister Chi!


Yes, yet again this is an oh-my-god moment. Perhaps not of the same size as the one from last week, but still it makes my heart pound and I feel hundreds of little butterflies flap their delicate wings against the inside of my belly. This has to do with love, I hear you think. And yes, you're right.

The object of my affection? Mister Chi. Mister Chi is adorable, refined, and so original. That's probably why the name of his new ride, the Silk, is so appropriate. Mister Chi comes from China, and he's proud of it too. Fall 2009 he launched his scooter Mister Chi Original, with tons of possibilities. That's the amazingly cool thing about this Chinese dude, you can customize and vary endlessly and make it actually YOUR ride. Vespa delivers in a standard set of colours, Mister Chi however goes beyond the line of standard, and brings you whatever you want from your new BFF. For starters, you can choose from 36 different colours. On top of that you can vary with the colours for the seperate parts of the scooters, and making it therefore a unique scooter, just the way YOU like it. And if you hand Mister Chi a photo, he will paint it on the scooter, or print your companies logo on it.
Another important aspect of Mister Chi's scooters is the fact that his rides are very economical and super silent because of the 4-tact motor and high quality scooter-parts. This spring Mister Chi brings us the Silk, his latest way of looking stylish in traffic. Because of its size and shape, ideal for hectic city life. And if you'd rather not mess your hair up by wearing a helmet, you can opt for the snorscooter (as we call it in Holland, who can tell me the English translation of a scooter that goes up to 25 km p/hr and therefore doesn't require a helmet?!). The retro fifties design looks super stylish and although this edition is delivered in six authentic colours, you can still vary wildly and personalize your ride by choosing a rack on front of the scooter, a double saddle or floor mats. And - which I find the coolest aspect of the Silk - is that they all come with a cute buddy to carry your extra wheel. I love it.

So to conclude this ode to Mister Chi, I personally think his best feature is that the scooters are customizable (is that an actual word? If not, it is now), and that they're very unique, personal and original. Don't get me wrong, Vespa still stands for elegant chic and the retro Italian feel, however, this new kid in town is definitely someone to look out for. To stand out in street traffic, a Vespa doesn't do it any more, Mister Chi on the other hand brings us new urban glam and the option to play with it.

For more info, go to www.gan-baroo.com
email to info@gan-baroo.com or call 0031 20 6848 111

Monday, May 03, 2010

It's a jungle out there... but now you can easily shop, share and show your style!

This week the website www.fashiolista.com made its entrance to cyberspace, and I have to admit it's really cool what all you fashion freaks can do here. Basically the concept is really simple. When I browse the webshops for cool finds I find that I click on everything I like, I put it in my basket, but somehow I never end up going to the counter and actually buy what I loved. Why? I don't have the slightest idea, but I suppose it has something to do with money issues and the fact that I'd like to make a list of things I like... 

Fashiolista however makes you save items you love, and so lets you create your personal wardrobe or wishlist full of pretty dresses, beautiful bags and other funky fashion finds. This way you have all your interesting might-buys from different webshops together, and you can show other fashiolistas your personal style. You can become an inspiration for other fashion victims out there, as they can start following you. But, more interesting for you is that you can have a look at items put up by others as well as they can see what you love. Nothing is more cool than seeing that the item you've added has been loved by let's say 15 other fashiolistas :)

I guess it sort of confirms that you have a nice sense of style, which can be considered a compliment, no? And I've seen lots of other interesting finds by cool fashiolistas already. And if you are actually interested in buying, Fashiolista makes the find just one click away from the actual purchase. So instead of looking over the web yourself, you have cool items handpicked by people with fashion sense. And if you find people with an interesting and inspiring style, you simply become their follower and see what they've found online, and you can copy (and paste, as you never want to be completely the same, do you?) their style!

Ah, sometimes the simplest ideas are so super fun. Go check it out, but beware, it's slightly addictive... 

PS aren't the hearts and little texts on the site super cute... I love it, but I guess you already figured...

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Guess what...

OMG. Yes. Oh my freaking god. Today it's Sunday, the day that God supposedly made for us humans to take a rest of our busy lives. Lives that are filled with keeping your twitter followers up-to-date; staying in touch with your inner self by countless spa visits and yoga classes; and following the latest fads to stay as fashion fab as possible. On Sunday none of the above should take place, as God explained to Mr. Adam and Ms. Eve a little more than 2000 years ago. "No Facebook, nor Vogue or ELLE, no shopping or spending, and definitely no blogs", he said calmly, but strict.

I am very sorry to break this ancient rule, dear God, but I seem to have the uncontrollable urge to share something with the world. As many of you may know, I see the world very different than most of you. That is, I see it with a pair of crocodile Persol's. A frame that suits my face and looks nice, as I've heard over the last months. I couldn't think of myself as a person without glasses though, and the desire to see the world in all its glory and beauty without them, grew stronger and stronger every day. I know you might consider me foolish. Why no contacts? Well, just because I don't like anything plastic in my eye. (Oh, and perhaps also because I am too scared to touch my eyes. I'd like to call myself an eye-fobiac)

But last Thursday I couldn't take it any longer, and so I had my eyes lasered. Yes, just like that. Today, a little more than three days later, I can - for the first time - see how blue my eyes really are! How pretty my vintage Dior bag still looks! How adorable my new flowery summer top (with a silky pink ribbon on the back..) is! I can now watch Gossip Girl's stunning outfits (and gaze at pretty boys Dan and Nate) in all their glory... (Well, to be completely frank, I can't watch TV just yet, but I can only imagine what an amazing experience this must be in a couple of days...) 

And guess what the first thing is, I will be doing when I go back to Amsterdam...? With nothing more to do than sleep these last few days, my dreams have been filled with summery dresses, strappy sandals, and straw summer hats. I believe that I owe it to you and to the entire world to shop and see what's out there. Actually SEE what's shining so brightly in that window at the end of the street that CLEARLY is screaming for my attention. Will it be a new maxi dress? Or suede wedges with a little bow on the nose...?

To think of it now, I see a whole new opportunity rising: an addiction to sunglasses... Because now I can finally go to Primark and buy ten pairs of ridiculous 'ray bans' in every colour and actually see my friends waving at me whilst they're in the pool. Ah, it feels like life finally begins...

I have to stop writing now, because my eyes are starting to twitch. Will be back soon with updates of my life with my new eyes! See you ;)

PS Sorry for this somewhat melodramatic post. You know I love the drama. (but doesn't it also prove how hysterically happy I am...?)
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