You know it’s a good coffee table book when you simply can’t put it down. There are no words, just visuals. Addictive, addictive visuals.
I am talking about Andrew Gallimore by Rankin. If you are into make up, can’t leave the house without mascara, are more particular about your contouring rather than your coffee – this book is your new inspo-board.
This is a chronicle of many faces created by Andrew Gallimore – Nars’ make up ambassador, Hunger Magazine’s Beauty-Editor-At-Large – and immortalised by Rankin. I don’t know why some of these looks still haven’t debuted in edgy pop music videos. Iconic status guaranteed.
Like the book itself, which only has a short interview with Andrew towards the end, almost reminiscent of a bibliography section, I will not speak too much about it. It’s a clever tactic by the publisher who is clearly keen on giving art a chance to speak for itself. Sometimes with all of our interpretations, reviews, thoughts we dilute the art itself. What do you remember more: all of Da Vinci’s paintings or the conspiracy theories in the Da Vinci code? I personally just see the Mona Lisa in front of me and a list of thesis stated by scientists and fanatics. Only if I focus my grey cells, then I see more art pieces by Da Vinci. We, the reviewers, journalists, scholars at times tend to put our words on the same pedestal as our subjects. That definitely is not right.
Not this art tome. Here, we shut up and enjoy. Silence and appreciation. I shall leave you to it.
I’d like to thank team Rankin for my copy. You can get the book here too.
Necklace: c/o Hanna Altmann, Earrings: H&M, Skirt: ME+EM, Top: ASOS
Images Ming Chan
There is a whole list of countries I’d love to go to. I believe each and every country has its charm despite all of the problems we hear of constantly.
One of such places is definitely Mexico. When someone mentions Mexico to me I think of colours, chunky jewellery, frilly skirts, Frida Kahlo, phenomenally flavoursome food and smiles – smiles everywhere!
To create a look inspired by this joyous country, I had to go back to my love for yellow. In my head, if there’s yellow, there’s bound to be turquoise. These earrings by H&M as well as silk necklace by Stockholm based designer, Hanna Altman, ticked that box entirely.
I strongly suggest this pairing of high end and high street. I had girls running in high heels after me begging me to tell me where my jewellery was from. I was genuinely frightened at first, I kept thinking there was something wrong with me. I guess I was a-okay. More than that, in fact. I was the colour therapy that made people smile. Está chido!
If I was to rewind three years or so, and you were to tell me that I would one day shoot with Rankin, I’d probably think you’d gone cuckoo. But thanks to the lovely people at Essie, it actually happened, and the joke’s on me.
To unveil the brand’s latest nail polish collection, Gel Couture, Essie has invited a few bloggers, vloggers and social media competition winners to sport their new shades in front of Rankin’s lens. As I am typing, I am wearing one of Essie’s new varnishes, and the colour certainly has not budged since it was put on a few days ago. The new bottle design reminds me of a twirling skirt or dress, much like that worn by a catwalk model who is about to take the turn after being photographed by the snappers in the pit. Clever.
Unlike actual couture gowns, Essie’s couture offering is attainable, and will be available in all of our favourite UK make-up shops, from Boots (as well as Boots online) to Superdrug. Of course, the classic Essie polishes are not going anywhere, so your favourite shades – hello Ballet Slippers and Liquorice – are here to stay.
Coming back to the photoshoot itself, working with Rankin was a phenomenal experience. Some people just bring out the best in others. Rankin has that very quality, and this is exactly what he photographs: You at your most euphoric moment.
Thank you so much team Essie and team Rankin for having me over.
Kimono: Vintage, Pumps: BCBG, Belts: New Look, Earrings: H&M, Sunglasses: Karl Lagerfeld
Images by Ming Chan
I bought this kimono absolute years ago in Vilnius. It’s wonderful, silk and double sided – there’s a beautiful dragon on the other side which I will definitely show you on Snapchat.
I know that this outfit will bring some of you mixed emotions – but where’s Edita? – let me assure you, I am more me in this look than ever. In fact, this was my exact hair style as a kid, my hair somehow was naturally much darker too; it lightened up as I grew older even without the dye. I have a feeling my parents who secretly stalk this blog will adore what may seem to be an alter ego to some, and try to convince me that a short bob is (and was – it was my mum who took me to the hair dressers’ saying it was time to chop off my tresses and Anna-Wintour it up as I turned nine) a good idea. It was, it automatically made me Victoria Beckham in every let’s-pretend-to-be-the-Spice-Girls game. She also happened to be my favourite.
But let’s talk about the Japanese inspiration of this shoot. One of my biggest dreams is to visit Tokyo and Kyoto. There are so many things that I admire about the Japanese: Their way of thinking, their dedication to tradition and their insatiable appetite for innovating, even if some of these inventions are ridiculed as a result. I get ridiculed and called “brave” for a lot of my bold style choices often too, so I think I’ll feel right at home at the Harajuku district among many other places one these phenomenal islands. This longing to see Japan has pushed me to shoot something inspired by it this wonderful country, so that I could share this fantastic vibe with you all.
Growing up in Vilnius meant that I witnessed almost no cultural diversity. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, I came to appreciate how preserved my own culture was. But then again, I had an insatiable appetite to see and find out more about other people’s heritages. I guess I never liked being that sheltered.
Imagine how happy I was to find that every Saturday morning there was a broadcast of an old Bollywood movie or two – this served as a perfect background to me getting ready, dancing around and whacking some eye liner and gloss on before heading out to see my friends. I loved those movies! Grandma and I would coo over the actresses’ hairstyles, their jewellery and their colourful clothes. To be fair, I never paid attention to what these films were actually about but I would be extremely entertained by the male lead’s extreme strength: Dropping from a plane, catching a bullet with his bare hands, kicking some ass all the while dancing to the next traditional beat with a sudden crowd of professional dancers behind him. YAS! Can life get any better? Oh yes it can. To add to his portfolio of skills, the lead female would just happen to be madly in love with him. Amazing. If only my life was like that!
My admiration for South Asian movies is all well and good, but little did I know I would actually get a chance to meet some of these stunning actresses. My friends at Este Couture invited me to see Jacqueline Fernandez, a leading Bollywood actress, talk about her wedding dreams and outfit goals. She was easy-going, fun and bubbly, like you’d want your best friend to be. Wearing Elan, Jacqueline lit up the whole room. Literally – that is how sparkly her outfit was. I’m pretty sure I saw my own reflection in those crystals, they were divine.
It’s funny to think that a teen who could only dream about seeing all of these people from far, far away suddenly can chat and geek out over selfies with the crème de la crème of Bollywood. The world is much smaller than I thought.
Thank you Este Couture for having me over!