My Week in Pictures.

I’ve been taking it easy lately, trying to recharge my batteries and “find myself” again, so “My Week in Pictures” has been on hiatus for the last fortnight or so.

This week I:

Went to the Myer Christmas window with April.

We also shopped for clothes we “needed” (translation: wanted) and spent way too much!

Put up my Christmas tree.

I love the festive season and so does my housemate, Eddie. The bottom of the tree is adorned with his childhood ornaments and my Belle ornament that April gave me for Secret Santa last year, and Eddie did the star-putting-on honours. He also went overboard on the decorating of the house, which I will be toning down on Friday, the first of my three-day weekend!

Saw Elton John in concert.

And what a concert it was! I’m not the biggest Elton John fan, but I do find his voice positively beautiful and figured this was potentially a once in a lifetime opportunity. I was not disappointed. As my Facebook status said on the night: “I can die a happy woman having heard Elton John play ‘Candle in the Wind’ live.”

Caught up on some reading.

All this free, non-socialising time I’ve had up my sleeve has allowed me to (almost) finish Téa Obreht’s The Tiger’s Wife, plow through a few magazines, and some longer articles (some of which will be featured on “On the (Rest of the) Net” tomorrow). What have you been reading?

Collected the final components of my work Christmas party costume.

Thanks to Laura for picking up the vines. Can you guess from the picture who I might be going as? (Hint: I have written about it here this week.)

Style VS. Fashion.

If you could be fashionable or stylish, which would you choose?

One incorporates fluro, Sass & Bide rats, digital prints and oversized tees; just some of the trends in the past few years that flatter most no one. The other consists of a personal style that transcends the trends. Think Kate Moss, Audrey Hepburn, Nicole Richie and Kate Middleton.

I know which group I would rather belong to, however, when people comment on my clothes, they usually call them trendy. Personally, I can’t think of a bigger insult!

Most of the clothes I buy, or want to buy, are things I’ve been lusting over for years, and are usually vintage or from a myriad of outlets, from “old-lady stores” like Brown Sugar and Blue Illusion, to second-hand markets, to Target, to Sportsgirl. I will admit to buying a plain red cami from Dotti a few weeks ago, but it’s the kind of item I’ll wear for years to come and is quite timeless… well, as timeless as Dotti can be!

One of my friends, whilst rifling through my closet, even commented that I really don’t have that many clothes. I asked why, then, can I not fit them all in. (I have several bags full of clothes hiding at the back of the wardrobe, which I alternate between seasons.) Said friend attempted to recover by saying, “well, you wear the same outfits a lot.” Like the Duchess of Cambridge?! (I wish!)

This is true, though. My favourite pair of shoes are five-year-old electric blue ballet flats that are hanging by a thread. My staple black trench coat for winter is also five years old. Long time Early Bird readers might remember the fantastic mustard yellow dress I picked up at a vintage fair for $30, which is one of my most prized sartorial possessions. I have a marcasite leopard brooch that is permanently affixed to my pleather bomber jacket (about three years old), which I paid a pretty penny for at an antique store… Shall I go on? ;)

Really, the only things I buy frequently in the clothing department are plain white, black and grey tees, jeans, and underwear.

I do like to look good (and my walk to work, where I’m confined to the limits of an unflattering uniform, is always a fashion parade!) but, when it comes down to it, clothes are just clothes, as the sometimes-fashion victim, but usually stylish, Whitney Port said on The Hills.

And you can still have a personal style without subscribing to the skinny jeans, crisp blazer and ballet flat norm of Kate and Nicole.

I have a few co-workers whose style I don’t necessarily like, but who remain true to it. One favours printed tees, badges and Etsy jewellery. Another likes to match her dress to her boots to her tights to her scarf to her hat to her bag. The third is hipster through and through, and has the most amazing collection of bright coats and bags from her grandmother.

These are the items of clothing that quintessentially “belong” to them and their personal style: you can’t find them in Bardot or Myer or Sass & Bide. And even if you could, they ain’t got nothin’ on the original: priceless.

So what I’m trying to say here is that money can’t buy style. Or that fashion fades, style is eternal. Or something. What do you think the difference between “fashion” and “style” is? Can you have both at the same time? Which camp would you rather belong to?

Related: [The Early Bird Catches the Worm] The Way We Wear Vintage Market.

[The Early Bird Catches the Worm] Who Wore it Better? Kate Middleton VS. Blair Waldorf.

Images via Hills Freak, Saskia 4 Fashion, Franc Trunner, People Style Watch.

Jennifer Hawkins VS. Miranda Kerr.

Following on from last week’s post reflecting on Jennifer Hawkins’ nude cover for Marie Claire, I started thinking about the flak Hawkins received for it.

Why was Hawkins vilified for daring to bare her unairbrushed body, knowing full well the potential criticisms that could come with it? Just because she’s a hot model doesn’t make her any less qualified to comment on the body image debate.

Another prominent Australian model who gets her kit off, but at a far more frequent rate than Hawkins, is David Jones ambassador Miranda Kerr.

While Hawkins’ employer Myer may have come out on top in the wake of the David Jones sexual harassment case, Kerr seems to be the model who came out on top, continuing to bare her baby belly in all the publications.

Demi Moore, Christina Aguilera et al. have proved that the pregnant female is a creature of beauty; one that should be celebrated on all the glossies. The same is true for Kerr, whose bump has spent a great deal of time in the limelight: she announced her pregnancy in Spanish Vogue in September, paraded down the Balenciaga runway at five months along, and was the first pregnant cover model for Vogue Australia. In addition, she shunned Demi and Christina’s cover-ups and went completely starkers for W’s December issue.

Frankly, I’m a bit sick of Kerr, her baby bump and her bits. It seems you can’t open a magazine or blog post without seeing her naked body plastered all over it, even before she got knocked up. Sure, she’s nice to look at, but if you’ve seen her once, you’ve seen her a million times.

So why is it that Kerr can get her kit off every second week and be celebrated for it, while Jennifer Hawkins, who posed for Marie Claire for charity, and whose private bits we are yet to see, was chastised and her star somewhat faded since the incident?

Can someone answer that for me?

Related: One Year On: The Jennifer Hawkins/Marie Claire Scandal.