My April Moodboard

Those moodboards are more of a messy brainstorming ideas than actual fashion moodboards, which I intended them to be. However, I think they reflect my current mood quite nicely: these days I’m mostly about vintage vibes, especially the 1940s (for some reason), nicely done hair, bobby pins, lace collars and modest-looking dresses. For some time I’ve had this idea of a “dream dress”, which would be in a very vintage style, with white lace collar and colored in some simple color, perhaps grey. Am I weird for pining after a dress that I have only seen in my mind? I don’t think so.

Also, right now I’m very drawn to “conservatively” looking clothes, such as long skirts and dresses in dull colors (by that I mean greys and browns) or high-collared cream blouses (It seems that I’m very specific here).

But, another part of me wants to embrace feminine pink tones, perhaps to match the blooming trees that I currently see on every corner… and at some moments I’m tempted to burst into song “Think Pink” from the movie Funny Face. 😉


Bits of Inspiration (aka A Pile of Randomness)

I haven’t had time (although I did have motivation) to write any posts recently, so I decided that a nice list of some of my recent finds would be neat. Now, all of these photos are from Pinterest, my main source of inspiration on the internet. Enjoy!

Books do not snore. 😉

And this is probably one of the best ways to declare love. Gotta love Mr Darcy!

This was my quick inspiration post (probably the quickest one I’ve ever written… lol), and hopefully you also find some inspiration here! Then, until the next post!

Anthony Perkins’ Birthday And a Movie Review

Today we celebrate what would have been Anthony Perkins’ 87th birthday and I’m happy to say that I honored him how he deserves, by watching one of his movies (whose review is also included in this post)!

I have to admit that I’m quite new to the Tony Perkins fandom – if there’s such a fandom, and I’m sure there is – the first time I discovered him was in Psycho (I bet you could see that one coming). So, even though here his character wasn’t the most lovable one, I couldn’t help but notice how charming he was (I mean Anthony – not Norman Bates!). I suddenly felt curious to discover more of his films and now here I am, writing a honouring post on his birthday! 😃

I think that Anthony was one of these actors that I immediately loved from the first time I saw them on screen – similarly with James Stewart, who I first discovered in Hitchcock’s The Man Who Knew Too Much and who I now consider one of my favorite Old Hollywood hunks (I guess I just have a thing for awkward, lanky guys?).

All in all, I wish to see even more of Anthony’s movies in the future and hopefully, celebrate many more of his birthday anniversaries. I cannot resist his charisma, his way of acting and his characters are pretty damn good, too! (Well… most of them, I guess!)

Happy birthday, Tony!

Movie Review: Goodbye Again (1961)

When I see a movie starring two icons such as Ingrid Bergman and Anthony Perkins, I download it. Also, the French version of the title – Aimez-Vouz Brahms? (Do You Like Brahms?) sounded appealing to me. So, I decided to give it a try and see it on Anthony’s birthday, and, I’ll tell you, I liked it. It’s always rewarding to discover a not-so-well-known movie and like it – it’s like finding a hidden gem. But I also hesitate to write a review of a movie which is not so famous, because, duh, I don’t know if it’s considered to be a good movie, and I’m afraid that I’ll seem frivolous for saying I love it! However, I feel like Goodbye Again came into my life just about the right time, and that’s all what matters to me.

In a nutshell, the story is about a 40-year old decorator called Paula Tessier (Bergman) who’s dating a guy named Roger (Yves Montand) who constantly (and quite openly) cheats on her. Then Paula visits one of her clients, a rich, old lady who wants her house decorated. There Paula meets Philip (Perkins), the lady’s son. The scene where they meet for the first time is quite charming; I loved it when he asks her what’s her star sign, because his mother considers those things important, and she replies she’s a Gemini. It’s kind of funny, because we all know that Ingrid was a Virgo! After that Philip finds out that he’s fallen in love with her and spends the evening searching for her all over the Paris, only to find her in a bar with Roger…

Also, my favorite part about the film was Perkins’ character. He is a young man, aged 25, who works as a lawyer (but obviously doesn’t enjoy his job). One of his “quirks” is that whenever he’s talking to someone, he’s acting – I mean literally acting, like talking dramatically and using poetic, moviesque sentences that no one else would use in real life. But that doesn’t make him seem fake or annoying, on the contrary, it only adds charm to his character and makes him – well, uh, more adorable? He is a dreamer, a hopeless romantic who would rather enjoy his life and do what he actually loves, but who’s wasting himself doing a job that he doesn’t care much about. He also struggles with his own personality – loving the world one second and hating it the another, as his mother puts it. But, above all, he’s a dear, lovable character who was also super relatable to me (not that I have an eccentric rich mother and casually fall in love with people I met for the first time, but, I did recognize myself in some of his actions).

Now, we are left to wonder what makes Philip behave the way he does: maybe he has a messed up family background – we never find out about his father, except that Philip resembles him a lot. But, since the movie was based on a book, perhaps there’s more to the story which they don’t show us in the movie. He’s artistic, gentle, and lost: even though he is the “rich kid” who drinks, goes to bars and does most of the things that other young people do, he’s also nothing like his peers, in a way. He’s intelligent, quirky, and emotional. The kind of character you’d like to comfort and be a friend to. Okay, did I just fall in love with a fictional character… oops, I did it again!

I really enjoyed this movie, with its complicated characters and artistic scenes – such as the ones where a car drives through the streets of Paris, or the ones in a smoky bar… there is also a scene with balloons in front of the Arc de Triomphe, which reminded me of Funny Face.

I intentionally focused on Anthony Perkins’ character here, so I (rather unfairly), left out Ingrid Bergman’s character, which was also worth mentioning and her performance was amazing as well. But, I particularly wanted to honor Perkins for his birthday, so I’ll leave it like this. And don’t expect Goodbye Again to be a happy movie: it’s not. It’s more melodramatic, especially the ending. But I loved it, in my own kind of way. That’s the best thing about watching movies: we don’t all have to like a movie, nor do we have do interpret it in the same way. But what’s important is that we get to love some characters, dislike others, get inspired and actually feel something after watching a movie. Because that’s the point of art, to make us feel things.

P.S. This post will be published a day later because I didn’t have time to publish it on the exact date of Anthony’s birthday, aka the 4th, but I don’t really care so there’s that. 😎

Some Literary Female Characters That I Like

So, this post was intended to be titled “My favorite female literary characters”, but that sounded too ambitious, especially because I do not feel like writing a serious, well-thought-out blogpost right now. So, here it is – a light-hearted, brainstormed list of some of my dearest book characters.

Also, as much as I love reading, there are obviously thousands of books that I haven’t read and a thousand more characters that I haven’t met yet. So, yeah, this list will certainly be extended over time. But, enough babbling, here’s the list:

Tatyana Larina from Eugene Onegin

Yes; she’s intentionally first on this list. I can’t even begin to express how much I related to Tatyana during reading Eugene Onegin. She’s pretty much all I ever wanted to be: bookish, unique, dreamer, but also proud and dignified at the right moments. I’ve always admired her stoic attitude when Eugene approaches her at the ball by the end of the book. She managed to remain cool and calm when she saw him, even though she was burning inside… it almost makes you pity Onegin. Also, there are some of the most beautiful verses describing her, such as this:

And she to whom my lyre would fain, Yet dares not, dedicate its strain, Shines in the female firmament Like a full moon magnificent.

Lo! with what pride celestial
Her feet the earth beneath her press!
Her heart how full of gentleness, Her glance how wild yet genial!

(Of course, this sounds much better in Russian, mind you).

What I really like about her is that, unlike with Olga, her sister, there is never a big emphasize on her physical beauty, but rather on her pure soul, her ability to feel deeply and her uniqueness… she’s not beautiful because she’s pretty in conventional way, she’s beautiful for how she walks amongst people as if she’s been sent from above, for the way she carries herself and for the way her eyes sparkle.

Also, being the shy kid who never fancied playing with other kids, I felt so close to Tatyana when she’s described as a quiet, even “weird” girl who’d much rather wander along the woods or read her books than spend time playing games.

Considering that Pushkin was (probably) the one who sparkled my love for Russian language and literature, it’s not a surprise that I love Eugene Onegin so much. I also didn’t realise until now that this book probably deserves its own blogpost, which I may write one day… 😉

Ophelia from Hamlet

I have read Hamlet only once, so there is probably a bunch of little things about Ophelia that I missed (you know that feeling when you’re rereading a book and you discover some new passages which you didn’t pay attention to when reading them for the first time? Exciting! ). I’m going to read it again soon and I’ll probably find out more about Ophelia; however, there’s no doubt that I’ve always been fond of her character. Yes, she’s not a badass like Lady Macbeth, I suppose you could even call her weak: but, let’s consider her situation first. I mean, how would you feel if the one you loved and trusted betrayed you for no obvious reason, and your family cared about you only when they could use you as a tool to check if that guy you’re in love with is actually crazy or just lovesick for you? And have in mind that this is happening 400 years ago or so, which makes your situation way more complicated.

Ophelia had every reason to go crazy. It’s not her fault that she was too naive, young (her age is never specified, but still), emotional and gentle to be treated badly. It’s not her fault that she was deserted by Hamlet. She just wasn’t strong enough to put up with all that, so she killed herself. But how could she be strong when she had no one to lean on, to encourage and understand her? The interesting thing is that her mother is never mentioned, so it’s possible that she didn’t even have a maternal figure to look up to. And the worst part is that when everyone finds out that Ophelia’s dead, Gertrude’s comment is something like “too bad, now she can’t marry our Hamlet!” Obviously, it’s not as important that she’s dead, the saddest thing is that Hamlet can’t marry her. This is only one of the examples of how everyone treated her like an object, rather than a human being.

Some time ago I’ve read an article in which the author was defending Ophelia, and what surprised me was the fact that Ophelia was being mentioned as an unpopular character (this article). It annoyed me to find out that some readers downplayed her for being too “girly” (as if that’s a bad thing in the first place). Why yes, I think that conventionally “feminine” characters also deserve some love, even when they aren’t strong enough to fight against the shackles that society had put them in. I feel the urge to defend Ophelia and her senisitivity because if we only cherish heroines that act in the traditionally “masculine” way (which I don’t think is a bad thing), we accept to downplay femininity and basically, we accept that being a girl isn’t enough and that we need to act in the traditionally “masculine” way in order to prove our worth. Obviously, I’m not saying that you should give in to other people’s expectations and drown yourself like Ophelia did; I’m just saying that you should never let anyone make you feel inferior for being “too emotional” or “too girly”. I’m not sure if it was Shakespeare’s intention to cherish tradtional femininity by creating Ophelia; however, this is how I interpret her character because I like it that way. You may or may not like her, and that’s okay, but if you choose to mock her and call her silly, then sorry, we can’t be friends.

Kitty Winter from Sherlock Holmes (The Illustrious Client)

Now there’s a completely different character from the two mentioned above. Here I went from defending traditionally feminine characters to a character who’s everything but traditionally feminine. I deliberately put Kitty on this list in order to create contrast, but also in order to celebrate badass female characters who’ve been treated horribly and who are then rejected by society.

I don’t think I even need to explain why I like Kitty, but for those not familiar with the story, in a nutshell: Kitty is a woman who’s been tortured by a douchebag named baron Adelbert Gruner, rich guy who “collects women” (he actually possesses a book where he keeps track of his lovers, with photos and all. Creep.). Kitty managed to escape him, but her reputation was ruined and we must assume that she’s become a prostitute. When Gruner finds another victim, this time a rich girl he wants to marry (Violet de Merville) Sherlock finds Kitty helpful in collecting information about Gruner. The point is to save Miss Violet from marrying the baron. Let’s skip the story and here we come to the most badass (and my favorite) part: while Holmes and Watson came up with a detailed plan on how to steal Gruner’s book (yes, that book where he collects his ex lovers’ photos) in order to show it to Violet, Kitty had her own plans. Namely, when Holmes was entering the baron’s house, she jumped through the window and poured some terrible acid on baron’s face… and you cannot help but admire her bravery. Poor Gruner, now nothing’s left from his beauty: maybe he won’t even be able to attract women anymore…

So, Kitty’s made it: this was her revenge to Gruner. And the most amazing part is that she did it all alone. It was all her idea: she obviously didn’t have patience for peaceful methods of Holmes and Watson…

This is why I love Kitty. There is something fascinating about a woman who’s been hurt, shunned by society and destroyed by a man who was never worth her in the first place; in spite of all that, she rises from the ashes and revenges in the most unexpected of ways.

I originally wanted to add two more characters on this list, but it would just make this post too long. Perhaps I’ll dedicate a post to them some day; until then, enjoy this little list and feel free to be inspired by those wonderful (even though fictional) women! ☺

P. S. Pardon the messiness of this post. I know this is the longest one I’ve ever written, therefore it had to be a bit messy!

Spring: My Reading List

So, spring has officially arrived on March 21st. Yay! That means, tree blossoms, beginning of season of Aries and new spring *aesthetic* all over the internet. 😃 But also it’s a great excuse to buy more books! I actually buy them whenever I feel like it regardless of season, but the arrival of spring is a good excuse to collect some books to bring with you and read in the park or something…

So, my reading list is actually HUGE, but I thought it would be neat to write down the books I actually have time to read this spring. So, my reading plans are ambitious and my time is precious (lol), so I don’t know if I’ll complete everything from this list till the end of spring, but anyway, let this be a little reminder for me if I ever feel like I don’t know what to read. (And maybe some readers will also feel inspired by this list, if their taste is anything like mine. 😉)

  1. The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden by Jonas Jonasson
  2. The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
  3. Neapolitan Novels series by Elena Ferrante
  4. The Castle by Franz Kafka

So, this is it. It’s not such a big list when I think about it – it consists of seven books in total. As you can see, Kafka appears twice on this list – that’s beacuse after reading The Trial last month, I was intrigued to discover more of his works. And, generally, I’m a sucker for classic authors so that’s not a surprise. 😛

Chances are that this list will stretch out to summer, but I honestly don’t care. After all, it’s a marathon, not a sprint, and putting deadlines to reading would only make books seem like a chore, which is the last thing we bookworms want!

Movie review: The Big Sleep

So, this is my first blogpost reviewing a movie. That means that I’m not really sure what to do or write so this post may be a bit messy, mind you! But, I’ve watched The Big Sleep earlier today and I quite liked it, so I decided to give writing a review a try. 😀

To begin with, this is only the second movie with Bogie & Bacall that I’ve seen (shame on me! 😛), but I’m planning to complete my list soon! The funny thing is, whenever I watch a Bogart & Bacall movie (I know I’ve seen only two, but still), from the very beginning I’m waiting impatiently for their first together scene so I can enjoy watching their chemistry! Haha.

So, I must admit I made my first mistake when approaching the movie as if I had to understand it. I have a thing for detective movies, but at the same time I’m not so good at understanding the plot completely, especially when it’s more complicated and everything happens so swiftly (perhaps that’s the reason why I prefer detective books, I find them far more easy to understand, but that’s another story). But the thing with The Big Sleep is that you actually shouldn’t understand everything: even Raymond Chandler, the guy who wrote the book on which the movie was based, did not know the answer to all the plot’s questions! By the words of Lauren Bacall, “The Big Sleep was a detective movie, full of interesting characters who would appear only once. A lot of that was added to the film and no one cared how it would be rated.” She admits that no one of the crew actually knew what exactly was going on, but that’s obviously not as important. What makes this film so good is, in my opinion, the “noir” feel, the suspense, the chemistry between two main characters and some brilliant lines (see some of them below!), as well as the “what-the-hell-is-going-on” feeling (well, at least I had that feeling) that you have throughout the entire movie. Also, now I see it’s actually a pretty daring film for that period, including some sexual innuendos, pornography and drugs. Well, correct me if I’m wrong, but I think it just wasn’t a thing to talk about such topics in the 1940s. What I find funny about this movie is that every girl our Marlowe meets seems to be flirting with him in some way: Vivian, Carmen, the girl in the bookstore, even the taxi driver… I mean, yes, he’s handsome, but it can be annoying at times! Hahah.

I also find it funny that Carmen calls every guy she meets “cute”. And his answer is straigh up savage – it made me chuckle!

Also, can we talk about Lauren Bacall being a style queen? I mean, look at any of her outfits in the movie – she’s impeccable.

For example, look at those photos. I’ve always loved her outfit with the beret, but I didn’t know it was a style from this movie. Also, the dress she wears in the last scene is so lovely – simple, yet quirky and special in a way. Why yes, I’m also a huge fashion geek. Did I mention that before? Oh well, we’ll get to that at some point…

What is also remarkable about The Big Sleep are the opening credits, where we can see silhouettes of Bogie and Bacall where he lights her cigarette – it gives such a smokey feel, if that makes sense. It seems that most Bogie & Bacall’s movies are somehow associated with cigarettes, including some of their legendary scenes.

All in all, I don’t want this post to contain any spoilers, so I won’t describe the whole plot (the second reason is that I’m way too lazy for that 😉).

I hope that I could give at least some information about The Big Sleep – to sum up, it’s a really good movie and I recommend it for all noir/classics/mystery lovers out there! I think it’s especially suitable for those misty November evenings, and I plan to rewatch it in such circumstances!

The Magnificent Trench

Let me introduce you to His Majesty Trench Coat! Or should it be Her Majesty? Well, it’s actually so versatile that it can be both! So, let me tell you this: Trenches are AMAZING. I say that even though I got my first one only recently, but I’ve been admiring them from afar and pining over them for a long time. They are great for a number of reasons: firstly, trench coat is definitely one of those “classic” pieces that hasn’t gone out of style for decades (I’m not sure when exactly it was first “invented”, so maybe it has been around for even longer, lol). Also, it goes with basically everything and I love the fact that I can turn from a chic Parisian to a detective to a student to a noir femme fatale in seconds. It just depends on how I style it. Okay, I’m obviously none of these things (except maybe for the student) but, hey, I can pretend while I’m wearing my trench. Also, I notice that basically every stylish person I know owns a trench, which is kind of silly because when I first got mine, I was nervous and thought it was too “outré” and that I would draw a lot of attention (a shy person’s nightmare). But as soon as I started wearing it, I noticed that almost everyone – my friends, tachers, people on the street – so many people were wearing some kind of trench. Let me make things clear, I’m all for individuality and quirky style, you don’t have to wear something merely because it’s popular – but, hey, the fact that the trench is so popular only proves that it’s amazing. Now, another reason I love trench coats is that they are so popular in classsic movies! Audrey Hepburn, Catherine Deneuve, Humphrey Bogart, Peter Sellers… almost every classic star has an iconic trench coat look. So, in honor of our beloved Hollywood actors and actresses, I made this compilation of some unforgettable trench moments on film.

The Umbrellas of Cherbourg. This is actually a very sad scene, but you just can’t help but notice Genevieve’s trench! My plan is to recreate her look from this scene one day, complete with hair ribbon.
Casablanca. Everyone remembers the line “here’s looking at you, kid” but do you remember that Rick was also wearing a trench while saying it? I’ll be honest, I didn’t even notice that when I first watched the movie… oh well, another movie to rewatch. *puts Casablamca on rewatch list*
Breakfast a t Tiffany’s. What’s not to love about this scene? Though I think I’d be worried if my trench got THAT wet. Lol, just kidding. Who cares about such mundane things while kissing the love of your life on the streets of New York?

The Samurai. I didn’t actually watch this movie but hey – Alain Delon! In a trench! Why would I resist?

Peter Sellers – I’m not sure which movie this is, but he wears this outfit in almost every Pink Panther movie, so… yeah. Now you see what I was talking about when I said trench coat could turn me into a detective? Also, Pink Panther is HILARIOUS. I watched all series during last summer, and I died of laughing at his jokes… I mean, Blake Edwards was a genius.

And for the end, this beautiful photo of Bogie & Baby. She is one of my favorite style icons! More on that in later posts… 🙃