Monday, October 29, 2012

Fresh start

Hello friends, family, readers, Torontonians, and aliens from Outer Space:

This blog no longer inspires me, so I decided to start a new one.

Go to isabelslone.blogspot.com for updates on my absurd whereabouts.

Love,
Isabel B. Slone
(Yes, my initials spell out Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Thanks for not mentioning it.)

Thursday, October 04, 2012

On Not Being A Vegetarian Anymore


*I haven't found the right place to publish this piece, so I figured I might as well post it on ye olde blogge.

When I was 17 years old, I stopped eating meat. It wasn’t because I’d seen PETA2 stickers with illustrations of cute pigs platered on the stalls of the girl’s bathroom. It wasn’t because I’d read an offputting book like Eric Schlosser’s Fast Food Nation (Jonathan Safran Foer’s Eating Animals hadn’t been published yet). It wasn’t even because I wanted to lose weight and chose to restrict my diet in an excusable way. No, it was because my best friend called me the evening to let me that she had decided to go vegetarian and tthat I should too. But instead of laughing it off and saying “Nahhh, I’m going to stick with meat! Sorry!” I decided I was up for a challenge, and agreed to it. My best friend’s vegetarianism lasted about two months – seven years later I was still saying no to edibles that had once been alive.

My first few weeks of vegetarianism were strange and unfamiliar. Never before had I restricted my diet, and I was forced to negotiate which items were “safe” to eat and which weren’t. Was it okay to eat the leftover Chinese food if I picked the chicken out of it? It was almost like having a food allergy to meat and I decided what risks were worth taking for the sake of getting fed. After one month I craved meat so badly that I asked my mom to go into McDonald’s and buy me a Big Mac so I wouldn’t have to go inside and face my friends who worked there suspect that something fishy (beefy?) was up with my diet. Eating a Big Mac was one of the single worst restaurant experiences of my life. It was soft, like sinking your teeth into carbohydrate-flavoured silly putty tasted so awful that my vegetarianism was cemented for the very, very long time.

A few years prior to my dietary switch, I was the terrible kind of picky eater whose mom was willing to cook a pepper steak for breakfast before school just to get me to eat. Not bacon and eggs, straight up steak. Even with such carnivorous tastes, it was strangely easy for me to forgo meat. After the Big Mac Fiasco of 2006, I didn’t miss it at all. As an only child, my parents didn’t have other siblings to contend with at mealtimes, so vegetarian became the standard. My dad started to purchase smoked pork hocks from the butcher and hoard them in fridge, slicing off hunks at mealtimes to supplement the paltry, meat-free meals he was forced to eat.

Eventually I went away to University, and nothing really changed besides my social life and alcohol consumption levels. By the time I moved into my own apartment with roommates, I already been a vegetarian for three years. I was an adept cook and feeding myself wasn’t hard. I shared food with my roommates and cooked a lot of delicious vegetable curries and homemade pizza. As an Environmental Studies major, I learned about the carbon footprint of meat production and learned new ways of justifying my diet to myself and others. I was healthy and maybe even happy.

But then I graduated University and realized I was no longer close with the people I once shared every single meal with. I could feel a sea change swelling up within me, even though we humans are already more than 60% water. I decided I wanted to be open to every opportunity and embrace all aspects of life, even something as small as opening a menu and being able to order anything I damn well please. I went to brunch at Lady Marmalade with a good friend and decided to order the eggs benedict with brie, avocado and bacon. The rest is history, I guess.

Now I linger at the deli section of the grocery store without feeling guilt. I can peruse through the sections of my Betty Crocker cookbook that remained previously unexplored. In the past month I have discovered $3 banh mi, eaten pork dumplings, prosciutto and ordered sandwiches at Tim Hortons that weren’t egg salad (I always hated egg salad). I am overwhelmed by the variety of options of food there are available in this world. But with all this freedom it is harder than ever to make a choice about what to eat for dinner.

For dinner tonight, I bought a rotisserie chicken and ate it with my bare hands. I felt like Fred Flinstone, a cartoon barbarian in a ragged leopard-print toga gnawing away at the fleshy carcass. But despite this obvious display, I felt a deeper more primeval urge come to life as I gnawed on bones and gouged dark meat out of the juicy crevices of the roasted bird. For the first time in years, I felt what it was like to survive. Obviously buying a rotisserie chicken is vastly different than raising, slaughtering, plucking and preparing a chicken on my own but I respected that chicken deeply, even though I chose to devour it.

They (scientists?) say that every seven years all of your skin cells completely regenerate and technically you become a completely new person. That is me today, in regards to both my skin and my newfound diet.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before

I just want my life to look like a Smiths video - riding bicycles in a bleak part of town on a blustery day, wearing denim and t-shirts and trench coats with flat oxford shoes and trademark thick-framed glasses.









Sunday, August 19, 2012

Smells Like Twenties Spirit



Hello there! In case you thought I was dead, I am here to assure you that I am certainly alive, just not willing to blog with the frequency of a Alvin the Chipmunk on speed. There's just something about summer that makes me wear nothing but "jorts" day after day and really, no one needs to see a picture of that.

Besides lack of style inspiration, another reason for my absence is because I feel like the internet has gone on this obsessive tangent with this whole Rookie/girl-guts, pastel hair, sparkly feminist aesthetic. It's all fine and good and I think Celia and Tavi are incredibly lovely girls and great role models, but I just don’t buy into the cult of perpetual teenagehood. I have plain brown hair that I don’t want to dye purple and my wardrobe isn't particularly colourful and all of a sudden I have been displaced by a whole new crop of "weird girls."A big part of fashion blogging is validation, and when you feel like your look isn't really what is being validated in the moment, you stop feeling motivated to put yourself out there in hopes of attracting a waning number of comments and "likes." 

It's okay though, because I've been doing what feels right, which is wearing a lot of black in the summertime and focusing on my actual writing stuff. I write articles weekly for the Toronto Standard, and am a newly-minted contributor to XOJane.com (I haven't even had a first post yet!) which is my favourite site on the whole internet. If you're hungry for more of my outfits, I am now a part of FASHION magazine's Style Panel.
EDIT: Wow, I had no idea the firestorm this would cause after posting this. This post is meant to reflect my personal feelings on fashion and style, and is in no way supposed to be a dis to anybody else. Why would I denigrate Rookie as a place for teenage girls? That's dumb. The content on Rookie is obviously for teenagers and I think they cover super important and worthwhile topics - I was simply observing that the dreamy, hazy aesthetic seems to have taken the internet by storm these days.

Just a reminder: things that also perpetuate "girl-hate" include calling me a "privileged girl moaning about… well, nothing of substance really" or telling me how judgemental I am. Words mean different things to different people, but to me, these words reflect me living my own life, not telling anyone else how to live theirs.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Class of 2012

Just call me Mrs. Robinson, 'cause I'm the latest installment of THE GRADUATE. Straight to dvd. 

 This is my sassy graduate pose, it really accentuates the sleeves on this very high quality, breathable polyester gown.
 These are the folks who made it all happen (aka mated then gave birth to me and stuff.)
This is the sparkly dress I wore to dazzle everyone with my ~*great potential*~.

Yup, there you have it. Last week I graduated University with a Bachelor's Degree, whoop de doo. I completely forgot to upload the pictures, which is probably indicative of how much I care about the whole event, but I am an "only child" so obviously my parents guilted me into going as they don't have anyone else to sit through a tearfully boring graduation for.

As I am told, sometimes convocations bring in established, successful and sometimes even famous people to give speeches filled with "sage life advice" for recent graduates. Unfortunately, this does not happen at the University of Waterloo and instead, we had a number of short speeches ranging from how great the University of Waterloo is, to the current state of the environment, to a Valedictorian who told us to thank our parents for paying for school, to how great the University of Waterloo is. All in all, I found myself wishing I went to Hogwarts or Oxford or something else stuffy and British just so there would have been more pomp and circumstance. Some trumpets would have been nice . On the plus side, I never have to go back there again and I got to wear a really sparkly dress under my sweaty polyester gown, so there we go.

Onwards and upwards, dudes. Now that this chapter in my life is officially closed, ummm... I am struggling with finding a great end to that sentence because actually no one hands you a blueprint with some instructions that your life is supposed to follow so I guess I'll just keep it cryptic. We'll see.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

T.A.N. Coffee

 
Hello! Good morning! Look at me wearing clothes and shrugging my shoulders like I awkwardly care a little too much! I only take pictures of clothing that I really love, which is why I’m wearing these Betsey Johnson floral Capri pants AGAIN even though I just wrote about them 3 posts back. They are my favourite thing to wear because they are so weird and make me look ~funky~ like Melora from Ghost World

I’m really working the appropriated 1950s look here with my high ponytail, red lips, clamdigger pants and my sparkly espadrille wedge sandals gifted from Sugar. I love looking down at my feet and watching them sparkle in the sun. Hopefully they’re not vampires. (EWWWW, did I just make a Twilight joke? Please kill me now.)


On the days when I don’t blog, I have picked up a semi uniform of, yes, jeans and a t-shirt. I don't wear these shoes every day though, it’ll more than likely be Blundstones on my feet. The jeans are J Brand and not only are they the most spectacular, perfect fit in the galaxy, they also cost me $0. Allow me to explain - They were marked as $15 at Kind Exchange, which is where I drop off all of my unwanted clothes and get store credit, so I had enough store dollars to get these jeans for free with all my store credit. I had been wanting another decent pair of jeans for ages so I am so happy to have found these stovepipes. I don't even have to cuff the hem, and I'm freakin' short!

They have a tiny hole in the crotch, which is lame, but I patched it up from the inside and they are now well-equipped to handle every day wear. Literally every day.

Note my gloriously unmanicured fingers in this photo of my new diamond wedding band: one of my latest articles for the Toronto Standard is about my utter abhorrence of fancy nail art. Obviously I am not getting married any time soon, but Anjolee offered to send me a diamond wedding ring (which is actually cubic zirconia) so I said yes because I like fancy things and looking glamorous. Ring courtesy of Anjolee, purveyor of actual, real diamond wedding bands.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Hanging Out With... Luka Kelly


Luka Kelly is a Toronto-based crafter, metalhead and maker-lady extraordinaire who just also happens to be an old high school friend. She runs an Etsy shop, Hellhound Fashion, where she sells kitschy comic-book inspired acessories, runs a Tumblr and is just really pretty and talented in general and has the most epic blue hair ever.


Luka was kind enough to let me into her house to document her wildly kitschy living space. The entire place is covered in posters of metal bands, cartoon characters and illicit street signs. She is obsessed with Spiderman, Darth Vader and just about everything sci-fi you can imagine. Every inch of the space is just covered in an expression of her own personality, which is young at heart.
  


She just graduated from the Fashion Arts program at Seneca College, where she designed a capsule collection based on her interest in sci-fi and video games. It’s a bit like Doctor Who meets Final Fantasy meets a punk rock nebulae. The garments are really structured and tailored, but are made out of vinyl and spikes so it's business, badass and faerie all rolled into one.



It all looks like stuff I would imagine tall, pointy-eared elves wearing if all of a sudden they appeared on Earth. Here she is modelling a few items from the collection that she designed and sewed all by herself.

Hi puppy!!
 
Thanks for being bomb-ass, Luka!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Garage Sale

I'm having another virtual garage sale, cleaning out my closet and getting rid of things that don't fit or I don't wear. Please buy my things and help me pay next month's rent!! I've listed it all on Etsy this time for everyone's convenience so it is literally a first come first served basis. When it's sold, it's gone!

Vintage Blazer, complete with buttons and badges - $65
90s Button-up Snakeskin Print Shirt - $12

Chanel Beige Spectator Pumps - $50
Grey Structured Minidress - $30
Two-tone Houndstooth and Black Blazer - $40


Oversize Grey Knit Sweater - $50

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Month of May


It's Springtime and the mom jeans are in full bloom. No prissy floral skirts, just full on high-waisted, crotch-ripped denim. Bam! In case you don't keep up with my on my numerous social media accounts (speaking of which, my twitter handle is now @isabelslone - so profesh) I've been writing a lot for the Toronto Standard. Here are some excerpts from my latest articles, and keep your eyes peeled for my weekly articles in the Style section.

I wrote about the social implications of getting a haircut...
“When I was younger, getting a haircut was a fate worse than the dentist. The black nylon cape was like a straightjacket; I was too terrified to move my hands to scratch an itch or brush dangling strings of wet hair out of my eye… Now that I'm an adult no longer self-conscious about my itches, I’ve embraced the hairdresser’s chair as a throne of self-reinvention.”


“Do you remember when Courtney Love punched Kathleen Hanna at Lollapalooza in 1995, supposedly over an off-comment made about Courtney’s alleged drug use during her pregnancy with Frances Bean? Ok, neither do I because – full disclosure - I was precisely five years old at the time. But that doesn’t stop me from caring about decades-old beef between the high priestess of riot grrrl and the queen of kinderwhore.”

So yeah, I write things and have a great time doing it and it is my ultimate life goal to become and editor by age 25 and have a really awesome career-focused life. There, I said it. I don't really care about travelling or racking up really meaningful life experiences, I live to work because writing is my passion and that's really all there is. But sometimes you gotta have fun, at that's what WORN Fashion Journal is for! Last Saturday they held an issue launch party for the latest issue (best cover of all time) and it was SO FREAKING FUN. The people, the music, the clothes, everything was just golden. I look embarrassingly drunk in most of the photos so here is me and my friend Julia with magazines over our faces.

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Bieber Face

For reasons unbeknownst to myself, a website called Pigeons and Planes decided to have some fun and photoshop Justin Bieber's head onto my body for an article called 20 Musicians Reimagined as Hipsters. I'm...honoured? TO be perfectly honest, I think this takes the cake as one of the weirdest press clippings I've received in six years of blogging. Most of the photoshops in the article are pretty accurate, but, like, do we even have to re-imagine Justin Bieber as a hipster? Doesn't he already fit the bill?

Also, I know the name of this blog is "Hipster Musings" but a couple months ago I wrote an article for my student newspaper as well as PLANT magazine #2 that discussed the nonexistence of hipsters. You should read it, if you know what's good for you!