Monday, 30 January 2012

Because It's Monday: Gimme Some Sparkles

Ok, perhaps not my sentiments exactly today, but I'm pretty sure most of you suffer from those Manic Mondays, or even blaah Mondays... It's the start to the new working week, so my wish for you is to grab a coffee or power shake and rock on this week!

I guess this first picture does somehow reflects my mood of late, being pulled in numerous directions, trying to do everything and trying to balance it all very carefully. I feel like those performance artists with spinning plates... and if one falls then the others may well do the same... Crash and burn.

Therefore, I'm going to take a mini break from the blog. So please forgive me if I fall behind on my blog roll and don't comment back immediately over next week or so. You guys mean the world to me, & those who know me well, will know that I always have time for you & reply back (unless you're a spammer asking to follow, if this is the case, please do me the courtesy of visiting at least a few times so I remember who you are & build up a relationship).
I am still around, I just need to focus on some other bits right now, If anyone has ever been in the position of playing role-reversal amongst other things, you may well know what I mean...

Yes please, I wouldn't mind a re-fillable glittery coffee cup

I'd like to try this soon, pretty glittery nails with black bow-tie.

The Festival of Light, Lanterns filling the sky in Chiang Mai, so beautiful. I once saw this festival in Laos, one of the most remarkable places on earth. Everyone just got together, it was amazing seeing a community of people gel together to create such a beautiful festival.

Words to live by, Audrey is often right, no?

New readers, regular kittens, silent followers/visitors, you're awesome!

Have a great week everyone!
Καλή εβδομάδα!!!

images via: 1, 2 & 3, 4 - Google images & 5 (edited by ABG)

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Friday, 27 January 2012

Friday Funnies: Imagine Anna Wintour with Different Hair

I almost died laughing my head off when I first saw this... Can you imagine? Actually this isn't a bad look for Anna looking at this all over again. Will she ever change her fringed cropped look?

So, who's tried Zumba, it's one of the biggest craze's in fitness right now...?
(Briana from Step Up 2: The Streets & Jim Carrey from Ace Ventura doing his crazy dance)
Original concept inspired by: Alisha Koch here and "What I feel like when I run & What i'm pretty sure I actually look like" image on Pinterest.
Image above sourced and re-constructed by ABG.

This was a looooong time ago, but I still have a good chuckle when I see Justin rock a leotard on Saturday Night Live with Beyonce. The first outtake is below. If you haven't seen this before it'll guarantee a giggle from you.

Wishing you all a fabulous weekend. What will you be doing? I've got a fair bit of sightseeing duties this weekend, just hope we have sunny weather! Plus I do realise I have a heck of a lot of blog reading to catch up on... I am around peeps!
Aside from that I've many a wedding to prep for this year and plan a few surprises, not easy when you're across the pond I tell you. Anyhoos, I couldn't be more excited my friends!

Now skiddadle you gorgeous lot & go have fun!

images via youtube, pinterest (some edited by me)
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Wednesday, 25 January 2012

What They Wore: MadWalk by Vodafone VIP Pre-Party, Athens

Above: Katrina Tsantali, Regina Kouri & Marianna Smpokou

Ok, I figured it's probably about time I wrote about some great or at least fun happenings around Greece rather than whinge about troubled times...
Well, as it happened I missed the MadWalk by Vodafone VIP Party on Monday as it clashed with my Chinese New Year celebrations, but alas, the kind people at MadWalk helped me out with some of these snap shots of the gorgeous people of Greece!

First up, what is MadWalk? in a nutshell Mad TV, Greece is like MTV - a brilliant music channel for the young hipsters here. MadWalk sponsored by Vodafone however, is a Fashion Music Project, think major Catwalk show featuring Greece's leading Designers combined with live music from Superstars around the globe! I couldn't think of a more genius concept to celebrate fashion and music.

Above: Efi Papaioannou (Designer) in a gorgeous studded shoulder jacket & McQueen Clutch. I love this jumpsuit but I Want her jacket like now!

On 8 February the 2nd annual Fashion Music Project event will be featuring designs from:
I am beyond excited for this event as I missed out last year being in London. Anyhoos, more on this event soon.

Former model & TV Presenter (Next Top Model Greece) & this years MadWalk by Vodafone Presenter Vicky Kaya

I'm not sure if i'll continue to get random hits on Google searches on this blog for a 'naked' Kostas Martakis (singer), but I can understand why! If Greece made Barie & Ken dolls, I think he'd be one of those pretty Ken dolls, what do you think?
He will also be co-presenting this event along with TV presenter Mary Sinatsaki (below).

Pretty in Pink with a bit of sparkle

Interior Designer Extroadinaire & TV Personality Sissi Feida & Eleni Foureira, Singer.

I have to say I prefer Eleni in her 'summer mode' with lighter coloured hair and soft glowing tan... she looks ultra pale with dark hair...

Who did I miss? Catching up with my lovely Blogger buds, Elena of Life Full of Fashion and Penelopy of Fashion Architect, seen with super stylish TV Presenter, Alex Kavdas
If you want to see the night through Penelopy's eyes click through to her blog on the link.

images courtesy of Studio Panoulis & Mad TV, & last pic via Miss
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Monday, 23 January 2012

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner: Happy CNY!

Today I'm very lucky to have my folks over to be able to celebrate Chinese New Year, this year marking the year of the Dragon (occupying 5th position), the mightiest sign... Boy my brother's lucky, this is the year for him!

In China, the dragon is an imperial symbol, the sign of the emperor's power and wealth. While the second animal which accompany the dragon is the Phoenix which symbolizes luck and happiness. I'll be back with a Chinese Horoscope for some of us once my family have visited the temples in HK.

Huang Xiao Meng by Yin Chao for Numero China Jan/Feb11

The gorgeous Grace Gao above for Numero China Aug 2011 & below for Vogue China

Double happiness symbol as nail art!

(Amy Atlas Table setting)

I would like to say Kung Hei Fat Choy 恭喜發財 for all!
May all you & your family have good health 身體健康, good wealth 財源廣進,
and all your wishes come true 心想事成 for coming New Year!

Images via FashionEditorials, Pinterest, amy atlas, Flickr & FGR's shoot by the amazing Kai Z Feng
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Saturday, 21 January 2012

Super Saturdays: Words to live by

I hope you're weekend is going well lovelies... I couldn't be more excited and happier now that my folks have popped over for a visit. Plus, they've brought over some of my favourite things, now that is love! I swear they think i'm still a teenager, especially when the mini case is filled with edible goods and Chinese cooking products you can't usually get over here.

The night before their arrival something pretty awful happened... which makes me despise what's going on in this country even more... My Mother-in-laws place was broken into for the 3rd time in 1 year... What's even scarier is that it's pretty obvious they've been stalking her as they know when she leaves for work and when the home is free for their taking. The apartment was a complete mess and I'm just thankful she was never home when it happened and luckily, nothing of serious value was taken either. These were the same fools who broke in the previous times, no one that dumb would attempt swinging from the rooft top onto a top floor balcony... , life goes on in Greece.

I can so relate to this!

images via pinterest

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

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Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Purrr-fect Paul & Jo SS12 Makeup

Kitty lovers, this one's for you! Whilst there have been a number of kitsch make up launches of late (French Patisserie, Laduree) and a number candy coloured & themed ad campaigns (think LV and Mulberrys amazing SS12 campaign shot by Tim Walker as seen here) for SS12. Gotta say, I couldn't get enough of the cuteness overload when I first spotted this make up range by Paul & Jo Beaute. This year they'll be celebrating their 10th anniversary, I absolutely adore this years Cat motifs collection designed by cat lover Sophie Albou.

The range consists of, three Face & Eye Colour palettes (£19.50) in Siamese Please, Kittycat and Purrfect; three cat-shaped creamy Blusher Sticks £21) in Glamous Puss, Minou and Catfight; and Waterproof gel eyeliner, nail enamels, pressed powder and lipsticks. Via, Harrods and Fenwicks and in the US - Urban Outfitters.

What do you think? Creepy (lipstick heads) or cute? Or just plain pretty?
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Sunday, 15 January 2012

Catching Up with Kate

Kate by Sølve Sundsbø for Vogue Russia Sept 2009 Full shoot via here

How's your weekend treating you lovelies? I kinda want to dive back under the duvet covers and sleep a little while longer, but the sun has popped out so perhaps Mr. Perseus and I might take a short spin on his little Vintage Monkey Bike (Honda)...
For now, why don't we take a trip down memory lane and check out some of Kate's many changing faces... I love these editorials...

I've read and seen many a magazines, but never saw this shoot featuring Kate shot by the marvelous Marcus Piggot and Mert Alas. Numéro #23 May 2001

above - Pink Hair by Nick Knight - date and magazine unknown

I remember when this came out and I was highly influences by her choppy fringed bob... this was such a gorgeous, vampy shoot shot by Emma Summerton, Nov 2007 Full shoot via here

I loved this shoot by Mario Sorrenti... Firstly, I feel like I'm on holiday looking these pics and the colours-wow, the outfits-wow and the hair and make-up, stunning! Vogue Paris 2010
Full shoot via this link
Be prepared to be blown away
This has to be Kates most racy shoot ever, by Nick Knight for Vogue Italia Kate's make up is pretty dramatic and she's barely recognisable at first with her brunette wig.

Old school Kate... via The Fashion Spot

Kate by Nick Knight for Vogue UK 2000

Hello Gold sparkly pants! By Solve Sundsbo

Noir et Blanc shoot by Mario Testino for Vogue Paris

Freshed faced Kate in the early days
Photographed by Steven Klein for Harpers Bazaar Nov 1993

This Croydon girl has come a long way, Happy Birthday to Kate who turns 38 on Monday!
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Thursday, 12 January 2012

"I Want This Job (Badly)": Cosmetic Product Designer

Well hey there lovelies, how goes your week so far? I know I haven't posted about a feature like this in a while, but believe me, you're all gonna love me for this "I want this job" feature!
Frankly, I would swap lives and careers for this talented bloggers job, whom I'm sure many of you are already familiar with.
Anyhoos, ever since I discovered Dawns inspiring blog "The Alternative Wife", I've been living in 'happily ever after land', getting drawn into snippets of her life as a New Yorker & the dreamy, uber feminine and just plain gorgeous imagery. It was through our mutual love of beauty products and probably my addiction to perfume that I discovered that she had the coolest jobs in the world. So cool I have to share with you all!

I want this job: Cosmetic Product Designer

What's a typical day in the life of Dawn of The Alternative wife?
Well let me first start out by telling you all a little bit about cosmetic product development or cosmetic innovation. It's a separate function from marketing or Research & Development (R&D). Basically a cosmetic product developer comes up with new concepts or products ideas. We work hand in hand with marketing on strategy and then we work with R&D on development, ie how each product should look, feel, smell and taste like and also what the function should be including what ingredients we want them to include.

That being said it's hard to say a typical day. Some days I'm at the office in meetings working with various team members to ensure that a product will be launched. Other days I'm meeting with fragrance houses or raw material suppliers to see the new trends. Other days I'm off at a lab or production facility somewhere working on site with the chemists to approve products. Then some days I'm meeting with clients to present new products. And I always squeeze in a little competitive shopping time when I can. It's important to know what's going on in the industry.

What do you love most about your job? Were you always passionate about beauty/cosmetics?

I love that I basically get to play with makeup all day and what girlie girl doesn't like that? I've always been a pretty creative person. I have a passion for art and illustration and I just love to create things and I'm fortunate enough to have a job that marries my passions. Creating and beauty. I've always been obsessed with beauty and cosmetics since I was a young girl. I used to play in my mother and grandmother's cosmetic drawers. And I managed a cosmetic boutique while in high school and majored in Cosmetic Marketing in college. I knew what I wanted to do at a very young age and just went after it.

Is the job as glamourous as it sounds?
There are aspects that can be incredibly glamorous, working with perfumers to develop new fragrances, the travel to find new and exciting things, the launch parties, working with celebrities and designers and such but day to day working in the office it's not all that glamorous. At the end of the day it's a job. An incredible job but it is work.

What area of the cosmetics/beauty industry do you enjoy designing & coming up with new concepts for most & why?
I've worked on all aspects of the beauty industry...color cosmetics, skin care, bath and body and fragrance. I honestly love each and every part of it. From the visual and textural aspects of it to the innovation and technology. They're all equally intriguing and rewarding.

What's not so great about your job?
It's hard to complain about my job. The only thing I can think of is the frustration of wanting to launch a product and not being able to for some reason.

What is the most exciting thing you've ever developed?
Oh this is a hard one! They're all my babies, really. I never launched a product that I didn't love and believe in. I wouldn't launch it if I didn't believe that it was incredible. If I had to think of one thing I guess I'd go way back to my first job right out of college. I was working at Revlon and I was lucky enough to work on Ulltima IIs Lipsexxy, the predecessor of Revlon's ColorStay lipcolor which was a major breakthrough in the industry at the time. Also I worked on LipFusion Lip Plumper which was another major breakthrough in the industry a few years ago.

What is it like working on a fragrance? How do you research and come up with a successful scent?
It's truly incredible. And such an art form. I work with all of the major perfume houses and really all the credit has to go to them and the perfumers. They're the artists. I can just evaluate and decide what I like and what I think will be successful.

What actually goes into an anti-ageing cream? What makes it reverse or improve the skin? (sorry very random, but I am curious!)
There are so many ingredients and new technologies that it's hard to focus on just one. There are a few different ways to address aging. One is prevention and another is reversing the damage that has already been done. I work with all of the raw material suppliers out there and various R&D teams and I have to tell you that there are things that truly do work, retinols and peptides being some of them.

What tools are required to help you with your job on a day to day basis?
You definitely have to stay on top of trends from a fashion, lifestyle and color standpoint as well as from an ingredient standpoint. The industry moves very quickly and you have to have your finger on the pulse. Also it's always good to look back to see what's been successful before and to see how you can update it and improve on it. I work with various trend and research agencies, raw material suppliers, I read industry journals, fashion and lifestyle magazines constantly, and I always keep my eyes open when I'm out an about. You never know what will inspire you! Often you can find a concept in a different industry and then it can be applied to beauty.

What's the career path for anyone wanting to get into the cosmetics industry? (Education, training etc) -Do you have to have to be a genius in the science department & have a knowledge about molecules and cells?
I just happened to go to school specifically for cosmetics marketing but that's not the only way to get into the industry. It really depends on which part of cosmetics you're looking to get into. If you're going for marketing or product development a marketing degree and an internship or job in the beauty industry will help you get your foot in the door. Even if you work retail at a counter that will show you have an interest and passion for the industry. And you definitely do not have to be a genius in science unless you're looking to go into R&D. I happen to love science and formulation so that's helped me have a better understanding of the workings of a formula but the formulators are the geniuses.

Have you ever come up with a concept for a huge cosmetics/beauty brand? If yes, can you share what it was?

I'd go back to LipFusion. I was being presented with a new technology meant for skincare to plump out wrinkles and I thought wouldn't it be great to put this in a lip formula to plump up lips. The chemists I worked with formulated an incredible product that truly works!

What are your thoughts on lotions, potions and creams that claim they can reduce wrinkles or can improve the texture of your skin to creams that reduce the appearance of cellulite?
Cellulite is a tough one. Anti aging creams definitely can and do work but I've yet to find a product or technology that truly works on cellulite. We've been searching for years now and nothing yet. I mean some can help temporarily but nothing long term. I'll let you know when one is discovered!

Can a $20 face cream be just as good and have the same or better results than a face cream costing $100?
Absolutely. Well I'd go up to $30 but there are definitely drug store formulas that work incredibly well.

Are there any beauty products you'd like to recommend?
I would but I wouldn't want to get in trouble or offend anyone. If any one would like some recommendations, feel free to email me :) via The Alternative Wife

I hope you all enjoyed this feature! I sure learnt a lot through the answers... all very fascinating! Dawn, thank you again, it's been a pleasure having you over on A Brit Greek! Smooches x.o.x.o

Stunning Images via my newest Photographer Love addiction: Kenneth Willardt - Some of the images are from the 2011/2012 calender for Maybelline, other via his site
Perfume lab image via designsponge
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