Exploring being female (for that's what we are) in a world of media myths, publishing incompetence, and marketing madness -- as well as the female submission and subscription to those messages.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Whoa Nellie, Airbrushing in 1895

 Nellie Stewart as Mam'zelle Nitouche, 1895 / The Falk Studios, Sydney:

"Australia's Sweetheart" in about as racy as it got in respectable theatre in 1895. She wears a heavy body stocking, the wrinkles of which can be seen but her lovely 37 year old face is as heavily air brushed as today's celebrities and she looks very young
Didja catch that part about airbrushing her 37 year old face?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Is it just me, or do you hear Bob Dylan singing Lay Lady Lay?

Just love the cover on this April 1971 GQ Magazine. Check out the cover stories: "Hair After The Fallout," and murses are nothing new.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Hunter's Cap With Ear Flaps Exposes Fashion Magazine As A Whore

The first thing I thought when I spotted this ad was, "Um, how much did you charge for that, Elle? And did you feel dirty afterwards?"

It's not just me making a snarky presumption about the placement of this product in the December issue of Elle -- right there at the tippy-top of this "Winter Perspectives Holiday Gift Guide," in the proverbial fine print, there's the word "Promotion." But does the word really need to be there? You don't need to be cynical to know there's payment involved when you see this hat in Elle.

And no, the ad text doesn't help at all either:
Heat Up
Your Style
Make a sexy statement with fur, the most luxurious and stylish accessory of the season. The Paul Leinburd by CROWNCAP Raccoon Aviator will keep you cozy and chic. The shape is flattering on everyone and the double hardware and leather details are beautifully functional.

Worst of all, the photograph of a man and a woman in states of undress -- yet wearing the hats! Not, I repeat, not sexy.

Listen, I live in Fargo, North Dakota, so I see a lot of these hunter hats with ear flaps, fur-lined or not; if anyone can see the sexy potential of such hats, it's those of us who see them on our husbands and the general male population.

But a semi-dressed couple wearing these hats is the opposite of sexy simply because it depicts a lack heat. How hot and steamy can things be if people are wearing their hats because people are more worried about the amount of body heat they are losing through their heads?

Hey, Elle and Crowncap, we've got two words for you: Target Market.

The ad might have worked -- even with the "sexy" pic -- if they had really kitsched it up and gone with something like, "OK, it's not all that sexy or fashionable; but it's a luxurious thoughtful gift."

And Elle, when you accept such non-effective silly advertising under a "gift guide" label, you look like the cheap dirty whores we women think you are -- and when I say "whores," I mean that in the cultural vernacular sense, not as a negative reflection on professional sex workers.

What you could have done, should have done, Elle, was reject the ad under that heading or assisted the corporate client in creating an ad which would suit your readers. Either option would have shown a desire to meet the needs of both our readers and your advertisers.

Then you wouldn't have been seen as money-grubbing street whores; you would be professionals concerned about the satisfaction of your clients.

Friday, November 5, 2010

The American Woman - Her Achievements and Trouble

I'm not linking to this post by Jenn Jen because she linked to my post -- I'm linking to it because Jen shows us a kick-ass thing: LIFE Magazine's Dec 24, 1956 issue which was devoted to the subject of "The American Woman - Her Achievements and Trouble."

What's more, Jen makes some excellent analysis when she tells us to take this representation of what life was like for women in the 50s with a grain of salt:

in this particular issue of LIFE, there's little mention of women of colour (besides the beauty around the world feature), women in poverty and certainly no shout-out to queer women. You know, totally unlike today's über representational magazines. Heh.
As I always say, the truth lies as equally in the omission and lies in any publication. In vintage publications as well as today's.

But in any case, I'm getting a serious crush on Jen.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Cellulite Is Old

From Vogue, Mid-October 1960.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Gorgeous Issue Raises Issues

Amy of Wolf Whistle on The Gorgeous Issue of Love magazine:

There is only one thing I'd like to say here: I wish Love had remembered that 'gorgeous' isn't synonymous with 'white'. Beauty comes in every colour!

I love finding new magazines and I love the "perfect" mannequin cover best (check out the link to Amy's post to see all the covers), but knowing the publication's definition of beauty is "white only," I don't think I can get this issue or any other...

That's the real question: Do you vote, express your indignation and your values, by not buying/subscribing? Or do you knuckle-under, rationalizing with hope or justifying to yourself that "all the glossies are that way"?

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

The Scoop On Face Powder History

This vintage M. Stein's scoop may not look glamorous, but it's a vintage face powder scoop.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Praise For Porizkova

The beautiful and wise Paulina Porizkova on body modification in the name of popularity:

Generally, I’m all for self-improvement. If you don’t know something, do look it up. Do learn another language, do travel, do open your heart and mind to new experiences. And by all means, pluck your mono-brow, dye your mouse-brown hair and work out to firm your body; after all, if fashion changes to celebrate hairy plump women you can go right back. But please, before permanently removing or adding a part to you to fit societal graphs of pulchritude, consider that that change will be permanent. If, a hundred years ago, you were unhappy with your nose – tough luck. You could hide your flaws, accentuate your strengths, and sometimes, more often than not, realize your flaws were your strengths and were precisely what made you unique and beautiful. That’s how, for example, we got the incomparable portrait of a large nosed Madame X, proudly displaying a profile that makes ME want a big nose.

Personally, I believe that every woman in the world is beautiful. Sometimes the distribution of her attributes is not immediately apparent; sometimes it’s a little uneven, but if she knew how to celebrate the things she was given, whether it’s a beautiful pair of eyes or legs, or intellect, or a sense of humor­– she could see how uniquely beautiful she was. Less you feel like interjecting, “oh please, easy for you to say, miss former supermodel…” For your information, I have saddlebags and cellulite, and no matter how hard I work out, that is my body shape and I’m stuck with it. I look horrendous in short shorts and any pant or trouser that is tight in the thigh. But, for the body type of a saddlebag/cellulite, I think I look really great...

Wouldn’t Audrey Hepburn, Jane Birkin, Twiggy, Charlotte Rampling, and Jean Harlow have lost their special brand of elegant, feline sexiness if they were tipping over under the weight of great ol’ mammaries?

Fugly Shoe, Retro 80's Re-Do

Too ugly to wear the first time around; not wearing it now either.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Is Fashion The Stuff You "Covet Then Closet"?

Has real fashion become unwearable? Do you turn the pages in your glossies and click at blogs wondering if anyone could really wear that stuff? I ask six top new indie designers participating in Project Ethos, "Do you design with the average woman in mind, both in terms of livable clothing and sizing, as opposed to art you hang on a hanger?"

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Be A Cover (Editor) Girl

Dujour, America’s first independent, internationally distributed, print-on-demand indie fashion and lifestyle publication dedicated exclusively to emerging designers and artists, has started their third cover contest:

Instructions are easy. You have a frothy and delightful helping of cover options below, all numbered at the top. You can comment here or on any of the blogs running our contest. Simply leave the number of the cover and any of your usual love/hate comments. Votes will be tallied after one week and winners will be announced days before the new and breathtaking new ____ Issue hits stands! And yes, we are leaving the title blank because…………drum roll please….commenters selected at random who guess the correct theme of this new issue will be sent a Dujour snail mail goody bag!
See the cover image options and vote here at Dujour's blog. (If you're curious, my vote and guess are posted here.)

If you're not familiar with Dujour, check out past issues and subscribe here -- subscribing to digital issues is greener and cheaper too (but I'm a paper-loving page-flipping nut myself).

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Shop It To Me Sale Mail

You know I love my Shop It To Me Sail Mail, so I'm betting my UK readers will be trilled to find out that there's a new ShopItToMe.co.uk! Heck, now any Shop It To Me member can select designers loved by the Brits -- like Vivienne Westwood, Paul Smith, Burberry, Stella McCartney, and more -- and find out when the goodies are on sale.

Even better, you select not only the brands you are interested in, but the sizes too!

So no more fake-outs; find the best deals on the lingerie and fashions which fit you and your family with Sail Mail from Shop It To Me. Join here!

If you already have a Shop It To Me account you can upgrade to the new UK service simply by emailing support@shopittome.co.uk. And please let them know that A Slip of a Girl sent ya!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Finally, French ELLE has put out a "Spécial Rondes" aka Curvy Issue; plus-Size model Tara Lynn is on the cover of the issue released last Friday, March 26, 2010. (This is posted under both "Ass" and "Class" because while it's a fabulous start, it's like a century late -- and why not just include all shapes and sized in every issue?)

Today's Quick Thought: Marie Claire

Sometimes, my favorite images in Marie Claire are the little throw-away sidebars on the masthead page; this example is from the February 2010 issue.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Be On A More Mag Cover

Today, More magazine launched the More Beauty Search on More.com to find three readers who look and feel more beautiful than ever for a chance to be featured in the October 2010 issue and win $10,000:

"More focuses on the time in a woman's life when she feels in-charge and full of possibilities," says More Editor in Chief Lesley Jane Seymour. "We want to find women who embody these attributes and really get across – in words, photos and spirit – what it means to be a More woman."

To enter, women must upload a photo and a 150-word essay at www.more.com/beautysearch about why she feels that this is the most fabulous time of her life, and pay a non-refundable $25 processing fee. Women nationwide will vote online to choose the top 100. The winners will be chosen by the More editorial staff.

Three women will receive a first-class More experience including airfare to New York City, hotel accommodations and a spa day, lunch with More Editor in Chief Lesley Jane Seymour and a photo shoot for the October 2010 issue. One grand prize winner also receives $10,000. The two runners-up receive $5,000 each.

The contest, sponsored by Olay and Covergirl, runs through May 5, 2010.

PS I would have filed this under "class," except they charge a $25 fee to enter.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Heidi Klum's Head

In this month's Marie Claire, Heidi Klum is photoshopped to the point of ridiculousness -- a giant head and man-hands on suited-stick figure. Ugh.

UPDATE: This technically is the April issue of Marie Claire; sorry for any confusion!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Big Girl My Ass

This is why I don't watch those post-award shows, or read those fashion columns.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

As A Magician's Assistant, Caroline Trentini Scared More Than Rabbits

So she became a model.

Dusan Reljin shoots Caroline Trentini for Numéro.

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