Saturday, March 31, 2012

ICON INTERVIEW: Twiggy Is Romantically Yours

TwiggyCover of TwiggyBy George R Vaughan

The changing tastes and demands of audiences and the entertainment industry seem to have left Twiggy untouched.

Since she first hit the headlines as a teenager in the mid-sixties, Twiggy has sashayed from one success to another, continually reinventing herself and always remaining ahead of the game.

Vogue cover girl, globally successful model, movie star, accomplished performer, Broadway and theatre star, and the face of the M&S brand, she has touched on almost every aspect of entertainment, gaining in stature every inch of the way.

As her new album - her first in over a decade - Romantically Yours, hits the stores we meet to talk about this release.

"It all came about the way many things in this industry develop; by accident. It certainly wasn't meticulously planned," she smiles. "I had been talking in a fairly relaxed way about doing something in the studio and then EMI approached me, keen to take up the idea. We decided to go with the theme of classic songs, songs that people from all generations might enjoy and I set about picking my favourites".

"Initially I chose 50! But eventually I managed to whittle it down to 12 tracks. My biggest requirement, aside from liking the songs, was that they were all romantic songs that other people could relate to, with timeless classics very much the focal point."

The album gave Twiggy the chance to perform with her daughter, Carly on the Neil Young track Only Love Can Break Your Heart.

"I thought it would be a memorable thing to do and when I suggested the idea to Carly she said she would do it if she liked the song. Fortunately we found one we both loved!"

Twiggy started work on the album in the autumn of 2010 and the initial plan was to release it in time for Mother's Day.

"It was a great idea but I was so busy it meant that I couldn't get everything done in time so our next option was to make it a Christmas release here in the UK. It did give me an opportunity to tweak the album and grow with it. I also wanted to do some filming for it."

From fashion icon to international music artist seems quite a clever journey.

"I'd like to say I was clever and can take credit for it myself but that wasn't how it happened. I do think it is important to evolve and adapt but after five years in the fashion industry, going from an unknown Londoner to Vogue cover girl, it was thanks to the lovely Ken Russell that I made the transition from magazines to movies".

"It was totally his idea. He had me in mind for the lead in The Boyfriend and he sent me off to singing and dancing lessons. The studio was understandably nervous but Ken was not for turning and he surrounded me with some fabulously talented people, which helped my learning experience and the project got the green light".

"I owe him a great deal for his perseverance and he will be sorely missed. There are few visionaries like Ken left in the industry."

The Boyfriend earned Twiggy two Golden Globe Awards that led to further film projects and also a TV show. She also released a number of albums and scored chart success with her single "Here I Go Again".

However, having tasted critical and commercial success with acting and music, the early 80s saw her come to the attention of Broadway when she was enticed to America, to star in My One and Only.

"Film is one thing but the live experience was a whole new dimension and for me it was nerve-racking at first. We did an initial run in Boston, which was wonderful but the Broadway opening night is something I do not remember to this day because I was so nervous. But performing on stage in a hit musical is one of the greatest professional experiences of my life."

Throughout her career Twiggy has enjoyed a very warm relationship with the US and from her first American Vogue front cover in 1967 to her business ventures today, it is a country she retains close links with.

"I love America and the American people. They have always been very warm and generous to me as an artist and I have kept a very strong connection with the country. I have friends on both the East and West coasts - and a few in-between - and I'm back and forth to New York regularly. I think I am what's known as a Nylon!"

"I did a period as a judge on America's Next Top Model and have a clothing business on the Home Shopping Network in America so it's like a second home to me. Only the other week I got a call from some friends in LA who told me they saw a 20 foot poster of me from the 70s on the side of a building and it made me smile".

"Of course, the fashion business was the industry that gave me my big break and without that, well, I wouldn't be here talking to you," she grins.

Does that mean she considers herself less the Londoner and more cosmopolitan these days?

"No, I'm a London girl at heart and I like nothing more than coming home from wherever I am and closing my door on the world and just relaxing with my husband."

And how does someone like Twiggy unwind?

"I like being a wife and mum - although my children are all grown up now - and I like doing normal things, cooking, sewing and I have become absolutely obsessed with jigsaw puzzles. I also still keep up my tap dancing - it's a fun alternative to the gym and helps keep me fit".

"I have a passion for animal welfare and support the cause of animals whenever I can as they don't have a voice so they need someone to speak up for them. Also, supporting the fight against breast cancer is high on my agenda and I am always happy to help in this cause where I can."

The New Year sees little let up in her schedule, as Twiggy will be preparing for the big launch of Romantically Yours in the States.

"It comes out around the 1st February - just in time for Valentine's Day - and my husband and I have our clothing business to keep an eye on."

So, what advice does she have for anyone who is thinking of forging a career in music, film or fashion today?

"It's tough out there. The music industry has moved away from physical sales and down the route of digital, which certainly makes sense but it does take a little of the personality out of the experience. I loved the whole feeling of buying and appreciating an album".

"As for fashion, well fashion is meant to change and evolve so I guess in answer to your question, if you are keen on pursuing a career in any of these fields be prepared to work hard and to expect the unexpected because really, nobody knows anything for sure."

Of course I couldn't close without mentioning those famous M&S adverts.

"They were really fun to do and I think you can see that in the finished product. I got to meet and work with some wonderful people. We have some exciting new plans to work with M&S in the future."

I came away from the interview impressed Twiggy's unassuming and generous nature. Here is an extraordinary woman unconcerned about celebrity for its own sake. Here is a woman who has achieved what she wanted through hard work but also always ready to acknowledge the part others have played in her success.

Now that is iconic.

Article Source:
Enhanced by Zemanta

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Denim Through the Ages

Denim WeavingDenim Weaving (Photo credit: LollyKnit)By Jade Jennison

There is a lot of controversy about the initial creation of denim but what we do know is that Levi Strauss was undoubtedly one of the first, if not the first, people to create clothing out of this material.

It is impossible to think of jeans without the brand name Levi's coming to mind and since the initial pair there is no doubt that this specific material has come a long way.

In the past 130 years denim has erupted across the world and became a must-have accessory for everyone - whether they are a child or a pensioner. The initial distribution of this particular style of clothing was to typical working class men who needed a pair of trousers which would last them throughout their working period. Levi's soon received a patent for 'Improvement in Fastening Pocket-Openings' which was theoretically the birth certificate of the jean.

After the brand became more and more popular they started gaining valuable customers, but eventually their patent expired giving others a chance to interpret Levi's initial design for profit. America's work-force grew and the demand for denim increased aggressively ergo allowing the brands to co-exist whilst still making a healthy amount from the working men and women.

It was only a matter of time until jeans were introduced to the public as an innovative and unprecedented fashion accessory. This uprise began with the western world as cowboys began living quieter lives and the media sugar-coated them and projected them all over their screens starting a new trend thus giving the denim world a chance to expand their business to cowboys.

Amongst this pandemonium, Bill Crosby's signature was in fact denim which allowed all of the manufacturers to get a lot more press and popularity.

After the cowboys were on-board motorcyclists began to interpret the jeans style to their own satisfaction and fashion needs giving it a rebellious name. Pairing leather with this material seemed to be a huge hit across the youngsters and started to appear in other parts of the world.

Hippies were next for this particular craze as they were seen sporting creative designs at 'The Summer of Love'. This was the hippie revolution as over 100,000 gathered on the Haight-Ashbury neighbourhood in San Francisco without a lack of psychoactive drugs and music; this turned into an epidemic of sexual freedom and creativity. The attire that they sported included beads, new fits and cuts and embroidery which sparked a revolution within the denim industry.

This market saw a decline when hip hop clothing was introduced as people began to experiment with everything but this previously popular jean material. But, of course the manufacturers saw a gap within this and began to mass produce hip-hop styled jeans.

Denim is highly unlikely to ever go out of fashion and has come a long way since the beginning. Designer brands have created many luxuries styles of jean and other types of attire including such a fantastic type of clothing which has continuously been on the market since it became popular and no doubt will be in years to come.

Jade Jennison is an enthusiastic writer in the subject matter of fashion and aims to provide information to people who share the same interests as her own. The websites recommended by Jade have been thoroughly researched and come highly acclaimed from direct experience. Take a look at a new denim brand 7 For All Mankind at Life Clothing.

Article Source:
Enhanced by Zemanta

Saturday, March 17, 2012

T-Shirts Online for a Cause - The Ethical Side of T-Shirts

t shirt design / connect themet shirt design / connect theme (Photo credit: :: Radar Communication ::)

By Cameron Cole

T-shirts are not only an attractive, versatile item of clothing; they can also be a tool for benefiting others.

Selling t-shirts online has long been connected with charitable organisations as a means of direct promotion but with a number of new initiatives being implemented through well-known websites, the philanthropic reach of t-shirts online has significantly widened.

Not only can you look great, you can also help to give back to society at the same time! There are a number of ways that buying t-shirts can be a vehicle for positive change and help to promote a more ethical society.

Promotion of charitable organisations

The simplest way t-shirts can help charities is by providing cheap advertising. Wearing a t-shirt with the name of your favourite charity on it can help to get the charity's message out there and increase awareness across a wider section of the population. Many charities are aware of this and even provide t-shirts online and in person, for free or for a very small donation, as a way of increasing public awareness of their cause.

Political activism

Activist slogans and designs are intended to help increase awareness of a particular issue and can be a great way to make a non-confrontational stand against a specific problem within society or on a wider global basis.

Activist t-shirts can be humorous or more serious in nature and have been used for everything from promoting free love in the 1960s, to poking fun at the social media saturated world of today. With a wide selection of political and activist t-shirts online, it's never been easier to make your voice heard.

Using sustainable practices

Many t-shirts labels may be aware of the ethical debates surrounding the clothing industry and may use local materials and fairly paid workers to produce their t-shirts. Sellers of t-shirts online tend to have lower overheads than retailers, which means they are often more able to support initiatives for sustainable practices.

By supporting local industry and buying products that are sweat shop free like American Apparel, you can help to encourage more businesses selling t-shirts online to adopt ethical and environmentally sustainable practices.

Celebrity designers

Competitions to design charity t-shirts are becoming increasingly popular as a way for designers to make a contribution in a fun and unusual way. With a wide number of design contests for t-shirts online and projects aimed at increasing awareness of social and environmental issues, celebrity designed t-shirts can help to promote local and international charities, as well as raising funds for charitable projects.

With so many different ways to make a positive contribution to society t-shirts will continue to play a positive role in our worldwide community.

T-shirt aficionado Cameron Cole lives in Australia and is obsessed with t-shirts and t-shirts online.

Article Source:
Enhanced by Zemanta

Canvas Bags - A Reusable, Recyclable, Eco-Friendly Natural Bag Option

English: ENVITOTE’s superior design is a styli...                                Image via WikipediaBy Steven Bernard

Looking for environment-friendly, biodegradable bags? Choose from those made of natural fiber like jute, cotton, canvas and non-woven. Among all of these, Canvas Bags are the most popular and preferred options. They are a low-maintenance choice when it comes to washability and durability.

They have soon taken over the choice of people who prefer the use of eco-rich, green bags. These carriers are any day less harmful then those non-biodegradable plastic bags consisting of chemical. Use of these organic bags will surely help in reducing the pollution levels.

Buying Canvas Bags is any day a wise choice when it comes to affordability and cost-effectiveness. With the growing rise in the pollution levels, these bags are fast becoming a popular choice. One can choose from a wide array of shape, size, texture, design and prints.

Make a style statement with this range of smart, trendy bags to look apart and stand out of the crowd. These are usually available in bright colors along with funny one-liners and texts. You can mix and match these along with your outfit to look stylish and elegant. Bags made of canvas are among the best recyclable bag options.

There are various styles available in Canvas Bags. This includes tote, burlap, sling, backpack, rucksack and others. Bags made out of canvas usually rank high in terms of user-friendliness and usability. They make a good choice when it comes to bearing the daily wear and tear routines or carrying many things at the same time.

These are any day a strong and cheap pick than their leather counterparts. They are not just chic but are also high in terms of quality. They are sure to add that element of class and sophistication to your look or attire.

Be it shopping or buying your daily grocery, canvas is just the right fabric. It's organic characteristic makes it a cheap option which is suitable for both hand wash as well as machine wash. Again, it very easy to remove tough stains from these bags which surely makes it a convenient pick among buyers.

One can find or buy these bags from every retail bag store or branded outlet. This kind of bag have been much in rage in the recent times as more and more people are opting for such natural bag substitutes instead of buying expensive shopping bags made of plastic material.

A bag made of canvas easily suits almost all kinds of dress and occasion. You can choose to buy accordingly from either tote bag or burlap bag. Canvas itself as a fabric is very versatile fabric and there is actually no limitations on the choice and range of such bag one can buy from.

For instance, if you are looking for a bag to carry sporting equipments, then a duffel bag made of canvas is surely an appropriate choice. Again, if you want to choose a bag for attending a formal event then a tote bag would suit the occasion right. There is absolutely no end to the variety one can select from bags made of the fiber, canvas.

Steven Bernard is a Journalist who writes articles on various online web topics and latest related ones on Canvas Bags and Tote Bag. Get to know more about such bags on our website

Article Source:,-Recyclable,-Eco-Friendly-Natural-Bag-Option&id=6931457
Enhanced by Zemanta

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Organic Clothing Better For You And The Environment

English: Pura D'or Pure Organic CertificationImage via WikipediaBy Annabelle A Randles

Organic Clothing and The Environment

In order to get the organic certification organic clothing needs to comply with strict guidelines which restrict the use of chemicals, insecticides and pesticides. Chemicals used in conventional cotton and wool production can seep into the soil and ground water polluting the environment.

They also have adverse effects on biodiversity. Organic farming encourages more diverse land use providing better habitats where wildlife can strive.

- Organic Cotton is grown without the use of pesticides and insecticides that plagued conventional cotton production. Conventional cotton uses around 9% of the world's agrochemical pesticides, about 20% of the world's insecticides and 8% of the world's chemical fertilizers. Organic Cotton is also grown from non-GM seeds. Today a large proportion of conventional cotton (over 40%) is grown from GM seeds.

- Organic Wool is also produced without chemicals. Conventional wool uses pesticides and insecticides on sheep. Conventional wool is also heavily treated with many different chemicals to clean it and process it into a finish product. All those chemicals can pollute the environment.

Beyond the production of fibre, organic certification also ensures that the processing of organic clothing use eco-friendly processes and that the dyes are low-impact and do not contain heavy metals.

Organic Clothing and Your Health

As organic clothing is manufactured without the use of chemicals and pesticides it is generally better for your skin especially if you have sensitive skin or are prone to allergies, eczema or dermatitis. Organic clothing is a better choice for babies and children delicate skin.

Cottonseed is a bi-product of the cotton production which is sold to the food industry (cotton seed oil is used in many prepared food) or as animal feed. According to EJF, it is estimated that as much as 65% of cotton production ends up in our food chain, whether directly through food oil or indirectly through the milk and meat of animals.

Organic Clothing and Animal Welfare

Organic wool is wool produced from sheep that are not exposed to pesticides, insecticides and antibiotics are restricted. Organic certification also ensures that the sheep are kept in good farming and humane conditions. They are allowed to graze freely on large pastures free from chemicals.

For Merino wool, museling (removal of wool and skin near the bottoms of sheep to prevent fly-strike) is forbidden in the UK but still allowed in Australia. It is a cruel practice which hurts the animal and is forbidden under organic standards.

Annabelle Randles is the founder of By Nature an online retailer based in London, UK specialising in organic and ethical products.

By Nature Organic Clothing collection can be found at

Article Source:
Enhanced by Zemanta

Saturday, March 3, 2012

The Return of the Creepers

Creepers shoes Transparent                                  Image via WikipediaBy Sami Brown

As years go by, we tend to see fashion trends repeat themselves; this applies to creepers shoes which are also known as brothel creepers.

In the beginning, around World War 2, soldiers based in deserts, wore these shoes to protect their feet from the heat so they did this by wearing thicker soled shoes, which were given the name 'creepers'. When the soldiers left the army and came home to London, they continued to wear this footwear which began a trend of fashion.

Brothel creepers are usually made with a black or white leather or suede upper but are occasionally made with bright suede's such as red or blue for a complete statement shoe. Creepers regularly feature a small lace fastening with metal eyelets in the shape of a letter 'D' instead of the usual round shape, but buckle fastenings are also quite popular among men.

The sole of the shoe is the most distinctive part of the shoe as it is extra thick in comparison to other footwear, ranging from a small one inch sole to a three-inch platform sole being the largest. Although it seems that brothel creepers are heavy shoes to walk around in all day, they seem worth the weight due to their complete different look next to other footwear.

Men were the regular wearers of creepers and were commonly known as 'Teddy boys'. This subculture involved young men following an American rock and roll vibe, wearing skinny trousers, velvet and quiffs.

In the 1970's creepers became popular again and various other subcultures such as Indies, Punks and Goths wore this style. From the success of this popular shoe, many more designs and styles came about, with three different sole thicknesses available including triple soles, which flocked not only England, but worldwide.

Whilst creepers were originally a men's shoe style, women are now choosing to wear them too. With leading footwear retailers now supplying a huge range of creepers, there are now pairs that a specifically available to women and feature a thick platform which is level with the chunky heel height which adds a femininity element to the footwear, girly colours are also used to differentiate the women's shoes from the mens.

Similar to other fashion trends, brothel creepers ease in and out of the fashion circle. The bespoke design of creepers footwear is a stand out trend that resembles a rock and roll vibe which is regularly worn by bands and musicians.

Samantha Brown is an experienced author who specialises in fashion and enjoys sharing her thoughts and interests with you. The websites recommended by Samantha have been chosen by herself from her own personal experiences. Take a look at men's shoes and buy online today.

Article Source:
Enhanced by Zemanta