Wednesday, 24 February 2016

#BoycottTheForest...

"Your life is a precious gift from your parents"
As much as we all love a thriller, don't go see The Forest

From what I can find out on google, The Forest tells the story of a girl who goes to find her sister, who she thinks might have committed suicide, she gets lost in a forest and things get spooky. Sounds so harmless, but the setting and the context of the film move it from a classic horror to a classic case of insensitivity and under-representation.

The film is set around Aokigahara Forest in Japan, known as ‘suicide forest’ due to the massive number of suicides that take place there each year. In Japan, suicide is treated as an epidemic and in 2014, on average 70 people committed suicide per day. Yet in The Forest, suicide is merely used as a plot mechanism to lead into a typical thriller, made-you-jump movie…

The Forest minimises the issue. It fails to be respectful, and it fails to recognise the real-world implications as it brushes the issue of suicide and depression under a rug of suspense and classic horror conventions. It dehumanises and mocks the actual, real, tragic suicides that have taken place in the forest by failing to recognise the severity. But not just that, real people took their lives in this forest, and the movie TURNS THEM INTO ZOMBIES AND MONSTERS?! Put simply, it’s disrespectful, it only adds to the stigma of mental health by mocking it, and it dehumanises victims of suicide.

And what’s worse is that the film is being promoted with the hashtag #theforestisreal… Yes the forest is real, and thousands of real people have died there yet in this film these victims and the very real issues attached to Aokigahara seem to be minimised to the point of obscurity.

I saw a good point about the movie on twitter, where a girl asked how people might feel if someone made a horror film based around suicides off the Golden Gate Bridge, it would be met with anger and disgust. So why sit back and support The Forest?

Another glaringly obvious issue with The Forest- it’s focused around an area in Japan…yet all the main characters are white…

Here we have another clear case of Hollywood white washing. Asians are greatly unrepresented in western media and this films only serves to support this, and really take it to a whole new level. The film deals with parts of Japanese folklore surrounding Aokigahara, so to have white protagonists in a film that seems so deeply rooted in japan and Asian culture is a clear case of white washing, as well as being simply pretty disrespectful, and possibly mocking?

In conclusion, The Forest attempts to make the extremely serious issue of suicide in Japan spooky and furthers the issue of under-representation and white washing in Hollywood. I’m so happy to see critics slating the film as it just shows that minimising issues and dehumanising victims will never make quality content.

The film is disrespectful in so many ways. So please boycott The Forest, but do take the time to watch VICE’s documentary on Aokigahara and the still current, very serious issue of suicides in the forest and throughout Japan.



#Boycotttheforest

Monday, 22 February 2016

Monday Muse ~ Kate Bush...



Kate Bush is a killer lady with a killer career and a killer look. Rising to fame at 19 (and being the first woman to reach number 1 with a self-written song!) she's had a long run in the industry. Her eclectic nature offers itself to style so perfect, and lately I've been OBSESSED with both her fashion and her music.

I think her style can be split in two- dancer chic which a lot of body suits, wrap tops and tight materials, and the ultimate boho dream with a slight Americana vibe. The best of both worlds! Choose your team or mix and match!

I think my favourite look is her simplest- The tight, all-black look in her Babooshka video...


It's such a simple, classic look but so flattering and I love the v-neck and pop of pattern from the scarf clinching her waist, So wearable and so so easy to recreate with some high-waist jeans and tight top. To get all your dancer Kate essentials, American Apparel is the one!

I also love the maxi skirt/floaty shirt combo as it's so effortless but achieves the quintessential boho look. Kate Bush's influence is undeniable, take a look at any fashion blog and you'll see her trace. But most noticeably, Florence Welch is so clearly influenced by Kate Bush in both sound and look. So many modern day artists wouldn't be around without Kate Bush paving the way. A real genius.

My obsession with Kate Bush is unhealthy at the moment as I'm incapable of doing English lit homework without listening to her song Wuthering Heights, it counts as revision I swear!


Friday, 19 February 2016

L'Oreal Wild Ombre Kit...

Loreal Wild Ombre Kit in NO.2 ~ £5.50


So lately I've been stuck in a massive rut. When your life is just basically college and sleep, stuff gets boring and change is needed. So I decided to take a risk and wave goodbye to my natural (boring) hair and do something a little different.

Normally if I wanted a change I would cut my hair, but I'm really liking having longer hair at the moment, and I didn't want to dye my whole hair so instead I picked up the Loreal ombre kit and got bleaching. I got No.2 which is for dark blonde hair, but there's also kits for dark hair. 

The process was way simpler than I thought it would be- literally just mix some stuff together, slap it on and wait. The kit comes with a weird comb thing that's supposed to help you achieve that faded look. but honestly I mainly used my hands and smushed the product on so there would be no harsh lines. I only used half of the product so there's plenty of bleach if you have longer hair than me or want to take the ombre up higher. I then waited about 30 minutes and ta daaa!


So simple and easy to do, and so so so much cheaper than getting it done professionally! I think doing something like dip dye or ombre is a good option if you fancy a spontaneous change, as if you don't like it you can so easily dye over it or cut it off. Also you don't have to keep damaging your hair as there's no roots to cover up! Perfect option!

I was sceptical before using this kit, but honestly I really recommend it! It takes some time to ensure the dye is applied evenly and nicely blended, but I think it's pretty fool-proof and from what I've read online, it creates a lot of good results! All the Loreal dyes, including this kit, are on offer in boots at the moment, so if you're stuck in a rut there's nothing like some peroxide and hair dye fumes to pull you right out of it. Go get your hands on a new colour.


Monday, 15 February 2016

A Week In Details...

I realised that I take a lot of outfit photos on my phone of little outfit details. So here's the details of a week in my college wardrobe...

Jumper- H&M
Dungarees- Topshop
Lipstick- Topshop 'Beguiled'
Monday

Monday requires a comfy outfit, and as I only had a half day in college I wanted an outfit that looked good but was also perfect for curling up on the sofa. I can't stop wearing these long dungarees, they're so so comfy and easy to style. Perfect piece for college outfit.

See another look with these dungarees HERE

Jacket- vintage
Jumper- H&M
Jeans- Topshop 'mom' jeans
Tuesday

Tuesday was a little warmer so I dug out this jacket which I looooove! I found it in a vintage shop for £4 and it's definitely one of my best discoveries. Paired with some mom jeans, it makes me feel like I walked right off the set of Grease. Can't wait for the weather to warm up enough for this jacket to become a staple in my wardrobe again, it's a classic!

See another look with these jeans HERE

Hard Rock Cafe Jacket- charity shop
Jumper- H&M
Trousers- H&M
Lipstick- MUA 'Fawn Fancy'
Nail Varnish- Barry M 'Caspian' from the Aquarium range
Wednesday

This denim jacket is 100% my favourite thing I own. I found it in a charity from for like £3, and it's from the Hard Rock Cafe in Orlando from the 70s. Best. Thing. Ever. I wear it all the time but on this particular day I paired it with my fave slouchy knit jumper and cigarette trousers for a different shape than just skinny jeans. I also adore this nail varnish, it's so subtle and pretty and applies like a dream!

See another look with these trousers HERE

Dungarees- Topshop
Cardi- H&M
Shirt- H&M
Scarf- Primark
Nail Varnish- Topshop 'Nice n Neutral'
Thursday

Another pair of dungarees, but this time it's my short black ones. I love the colours in this outfit with the dark green cardi, white shirt and the muted colours on my scarf. This is another really comfy, easy college outfit, especially with my massive cosy scarf thrown over the top (one of the best things I've bought without a doubt!) Over the nice I painted my nails with my favourite varnish at the moment, I can't recommend enough that you get your hands on this colour, It's beaaautiful!

See another look with these dungarees HERE

Jumper- Oxfam
Jeans- M&S
Scarf- Primark
Boots- Topshop
Friday

If I'm feeling like a lazy day, I'll go straight for this jumper. Charity shops are the best for cosy oversized jumpers and this red one is my absolute favourite! Paired with simple blue jeans, my trusty ankle boots and minimal makeup, the perfect lazy college day look! God knows how this is the first time this jumper has featured on my blog, I've worn it to death!

Hope you all had a glorious valentines day, I love you all x



Thursday, 11 February 2016

The Strength Project #4 ~ Eliza Caraher...


"Nothing is so strong as gentleness, and nothing is so gentle as true strength"

One of the best things that came out of starting KILORAN was having the chance to work with Eliza Caraher, she has yet to create something that I don't love and she has a mind full to the brim of incredible ideas and thought. I'm a massive cheerleader for her work, so I definitely wanted to chat to her about her thoughts on strength and how strength fits with creativity...

What does strength mean to you?

To me strength is this one single word that has 101 different meanings and connotations branching out from it. Of course there's physical strength, yet even in that it can be derived differently, it isn't just muscle. To me my whole body, each little part of my being is strong. My skin is strong, it holds me in and heals itself, my heart beats constantly never stopping, my bones, veins and brain are all strong. But then there's the mental side of strength which can't be overlooked or ignored. Mental strength is something of such high importance and value, just as much as that beating heart or bones. To me mental strength, the strength that we gain and create for ourselves is the greatest.

Could you tell me about a time when strength was evident in your life? 

Strength in my own life is most evident when I look back. At the age of 15 I was this shy, insecure and anxious kid just entering counselling for an eating disorder, suicidal thoughts and depression. Three years later I'm 18, confident and happy within myself and who I am. I don't think strength is necessarily a thing I thought I had up until the moment I looked back, quite recently actually and realised how far I had come. Not only had I beat mental illness, I had also found myself and the person I wanted to be in the process. I obviously couldn't have done it without help but that in itself can be a strength, the strength to be able to ask and accept help when it's needed. Though I would have preferred to live without the disorder and depression I wouldn't change the person it helped make me or the strength it forced me to gain for anything.

You’re so full of creative energy! Do you think creating and writing can help develop strength?

You're a sweetheart and yes totally! For me writing and creating has always been a way to express and explore myself as a being, to lay it all out. First of all that in itself helped me to develop a strength of certainty over who I am, the work that I want to produce etc. Yet to then offer up such personal work to the world is a terrifying prospect that meant for six months I kept my blog a secret, only tweeting a link to it because I lost an odds on. The response however from friends, family members and even strangers was so lovely and positive that I gained the strength to be publicly proud of what I had done and the strength to share something personal with people who know me and people who don't. Strength comes in so many different forms that I think creativity is one of the best ways to explore and develop it.

Do you think surrounding yourself with positive, strong people is important for your own personal strength?

Undoubtedly. Strength is something that can be shared and to surround yourself with strong people means there is a lot to go around, enough that if your having a rough day then here you have this mass of people who can handle you leaning on them for a while, and the favour can be returned should the table turn. Positivity is also something that has helped my strength grow personally. I am not naturally s very positive person, I'm happy and smiley but I am not naturally an optimist. Yet surrounding myself with positive people gave me the ability to pause and perhaps not be so negative next time one little thing goes wrong. I see this in itself a new strength gained, it can be much easier to just wallow in pessimist thinking than to force yourself to be positive. It is people which help us grow our inner strength, the one that lets us be ourselves. Without strong parents, would I be able to pick myself up everytime? Without strong friends who inspire me with their strength would I have this voice in my head telling me I can do it? And without my, sometimes annoyingly, positive boyfriend, would I be able to look past pessimism to see the lighter and better side of things which then gives me the strength and drive to keep going?

Do you think strength is something you're born/raised with or something you develop?

I think we are all born with the potential for strength within us but it is dependent on those around us and ourselves to whether we are able to develop that strength and grow it into an aspect of our being, tailored to us as individuals.  Each person who develops strength, does so for a different reason and as a result of different experiences and that's kind of beautiful. My strength is different in it's style and quantity to yours because each of our strengths we developed uniquely to us. Strength has no limit either, it develops and regresses throughout our lifetimes as we come across different situations and people. Strength is a part of each of us, but it is unique to each of us also.

When do you feel strongest?

I feel my strongest when I achieve something and I'm able to take a moment to pause and look at all I've done and how far I've come from the point at which I started. Whether that be my mental health, a new project, a piece of writing or even physical strength in terms of one week you can run for 10 minutes and then 12 the next. Strength doesn't tend to be something you notice in others or yourself until you know where they/ you started. When you know where someone has come from and how far they've come from that point, that's when we truly see their strength and it's the same personally.

Who’s the strongest person you know?

I couldn't possibly pick one person. Each person I know is strong, but strong in their own way. They've fought there own battles, dealt with personal situations and had their highly individual experiences. To compare and choose one would be unjust to another because they're incomparable. There's my parents. my grandparents, my boyfriend, every single one of my friends they're all so wonderfully strong within themselves and to pick one would be impossible.

Can you sum up what strength means to you in 3 words?

Individual, beautiful and invaluable.

------------------

If  you only do one thing today, let that one thing be checking out some of Eliza's work as her writing and her projects are super duper! She's definitely a name to remember, this girl is going to be big!

Find Eliza-


Monday, 8 February 2016

Valentine's Day Looks With Spring...

I recently stumbled across Spring, a site hosting over 850 brands and offering clothes for men and women, beauty, interior and tech- All you need! There so many beautiful accessories on the site it's impossible to not to daydream about the possibilities...so here are 3 outfits to get you inspired for Valentines day, whether you're spending it with your gals or your partner!

Belt- HERE
Hat- HERE

 I think this is a super classic look, and a casual yet cute option for valentines. The vintage-look belt off-sets the clean shapes of the hat and coat and also will make your waist look teeny tiny! And the hat prevents the outfit from being too 'childish' and adds a bit of Parisian chic. I love that this look has a bit of a retro vibe with the 70s denim skirt and simple t-shirt, so effortless but still has that romantic touch with the heart shaped detailing and feminine/masculine shapes. This is definitely an outfit I'd wear for a date, super duper cute.

Bad Bitch Patch- HERE
Biggest Fan Patch- HERE

 I'm OBSESSED with these patches from Spring, they're so fun! Stitch a couple patches onto a vintage oversized denim jackets and you've got the perfect valentine's day look with a touch of indie/grunge. I'd pair this with some black trousers rather than jeans to add some structure, and either a slouchy t-shirt or a girlier feel shirt if you want to really get in the valentine's vibe. I think this outfit is perfect for a day with your friends, or for a casual date as the patches add so much personality and life to the look! Spring has a maaaassive range of patches and pins, think I'm definitely going to invest in some myself.

Bra- HERE
Scarf- HERE
Regardless of the day of the year, I think having nice underwear is something all girls deserve! I love this soft bra from Spring as the design is so delicate and pretty ahh heart-eyes. But you gotta remember that February is cold, so wrap up warm ladies, especially if you're valentines will be spent on a romantic stroll (we can only hope!). I think this cut out grey jumper is a perfect option as it's cosy but won't completely smother your figure. Top it all off with a coat and a big scarf. A good scarf is really a must have for this time of year, so take a look at Spring's massive range of big cosy blanket-like scarves to keep you warm. But generally I think something cute, cosy and casual is always a good look for Valentine's as when you're comfortable that's when you can focus on being confident and happy!

Valentine's day is really just another day, so if you don't have a partner, grab your friends and make the day about you and the people you love and who love you most! Put your best clothes on and love yourself!

Check out Spring's amaaazing range of accessories and maybe buy yourself a little valentines day gift!


Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Playlist ~ Folk...



I'm a proper folk girl.

I'd say 99.9% of the time you'll find me listening to this playlist, which contains my folk faves and some of the classic artists that totally shape my music taste. Doing homework, writing up blog posts, spinning round on my chair, whatever I'm doing, I'm probably also harmonising over a Joni Mitchell ballad or deep into the best part of a Dylan track.

My folk playlist contains the absolute essential, classic artists including- Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Simon & Garfunkel, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Mamas and Papas and more! But it also has some tracks from folk newbies (or just new-ish songs that get me in that folky mood) like Hudson Taylor, The Staves and the soundtrack for Inside Llewyn Davis. It's a flawless playlist, if I do say so myself.

Love a bit of folk? Or wanna dip your toe into the ancient woodstock puddle? Listen here-