melle_chantilly: (Chantilly)
I had time to digest the park incident. I went running again and finally did week 2 of C25K !

I went Xmas shopping today and it was quite an ordeal. I like shopping and I was feeling rather energetic but a lot of people doing Xmas shopping seem to turn into savages, really.

So I had some delicious lentil and foie gras soup and white wine and sushi for comfort. And we watched the Good Wife. So, there.

Also, I found a fantastic sweater for my mom at Benetton. I hope she'll like it.
melle_chantilly: (Valhalla)
Instead of spending last weekend away on a little trip in the North of France we ended up staying in Paris and stuck to our resolution to both take a break from work (well, Math strayed a bit...).

On Saturday we had some comfort food (McDonald's since I was craving fries) and then had a quiet evening with my mother (who was staying at our place since we were supposed to be away and she wanted to take advantage of a landing point in Paris). We started watching The Good Wife with Math (I am completely sold on the show, so much that he wanted to try it, so we're starting at the beginning together).

Corset by Chalayan

On Sunday, I went back to run in the park. It might have been a bit premature since my knee was a bit tender, but I really enjoyed nevertheless. I stopped running after doing half of my run and walked the way back, so as not to injure myself more than I already was. Then, we made a roast chicken and had it for lunch with mom, then Math and I went to Le Jardin des Plantes to see the animals. We arrived rather late so we had to rush in the zoo but we wanted to see the red pandas and they were awesome. First there was only one out. Then we went to see the binturongs, which were indiscernible sleeping fur balls last time we were there, but which were very lively this time, including a young one. Then we saw the capybaras, some weird miniature swift foxes, owls, yaks and then we were rushed out. We were bummed that we didn't have the time to go see the red pandas again but we found ourselves on the other side of their fence and discovered that you could actually see them quite well from the outside of the zoo ! This time all 3 were out eating so we stayed and watched some more.

Burried dress by Chalayan

Then we headed out and found ourselves just in front of the Mosquée de Paris where Math had never been. So we went for a tea in the patio. Night was falling, it was lovely. Then we surprise-visited a friend who lives nearby and had tea with her. I hadn't seen her in a while so it was very nice, especially since I was rather out of it last time I did. Then we headed home and Michiel and Lara came over for a drink. Math made me a cosmopolitan and I found out later that he got the quantities wrong (the proportions, spot on!) and made me in fact a double. We all went together out for a diner and had wine and then I was pretty much wasted. We walked our guests to the metro and went home where Math had to undress me and put me to bed.

On Monday, Math worked and I caught up on the week's series. Then I had a coffee with the janitor and headed out to read (The Saints of New York by Ellory, not bad but not great either) on a café terrace for a couple of hours. When I came home, we cooked the chicken leftovers with mushrooms, courgettes, chorizo and cream. Yum !

Chocolate at Angelina's

On Tuesday morning, I finished my book, which was a great timing since we had planned to go to W.H. Smith in the afternoon. We first went to the Hussein Chalayan exhibition, which was great, albeit a bit minimalist. I think they could have shown a little more pieces, but it was well displayed and thought-provoking. It was the first time I went to an exhibition since I got diagnosed. It had felt too overwhelmingly tiring ever since to dare to even try. And I could do it! Then we stopped at Angelina's to have their famous hot chocolate, which is super decadent and rich (and served with fresh cream). And then I bought 3 books at the book store, White Jazz from Ellroy, a book that I found intriguing called Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri, and Little Women, which I started reading on the way home.

We had planned to eat seafood during our trip in the North and I was looking forward to it since it had been many years, maybe 10, since I hadn't had seafood. So I found a seafood restaurant in Paris, not very far from home, actually, with good internet reviews. We went on Tuesday evening. It was a bit posh but didn't make either of us uncomfortable. I had a big seafood plate with oysters, crab, prawns and various shells. Oh, how I love oysters ! Math had lobster flambé au champagne, which was delicious too. I'm glad we found this restaurant even though we won't be able to afford it very often !

An ugly picture of delicious seafood

And finally, yesterday I went back running. And my knee didn't hurt. At all. I was a bit scared to hurt myself again, so I was super careful. But it was great ! Now, I am longing to go back, but I'll wait for Saturday, since I don't want to push my luck !

So all in all, this weekend was rather good in the end !
melle_chantilly: (Default)
I've been quite into lingerie for a while now, purchasing at least one ensemble a month. I'm buying mostly from bargain websites which is quite perverse since everything is so cheap I rarely think twice. I do wear everything I've purchased very often so I don't feel too silly about buying so much. A part of me thinks that I've been so broke in the past, and for quite a long time, that I don't want to restrain myself any more.

I'm trying to be reasonable though and tell myself I don't “need” more lingerie, since my drawers are about to explode. A direct result of this is that I'm shifting to other objects of lust, namely nylons and vintage wardrobe. Lately, I have been searching the web (mostly Etsy) daily for great findings (bargains again, I'm the cricket and the ant at the same time) and read an incredible amount of material on vintage nylon sizing and care. I have bought 3 beautiful vintage dresses (2 for every day wear and one party dress).

I have started wearing nylons pretty often (not everyday though, mostly because many of my dresses are too short). I like the sensation and I find stockings way more comfortable than tights and way more secure than stay ups. I am just horribly self conscious in the street because I would hate if someone spotted that I wore a garterbelt. Also, nylon stockings seem way more sturdy than modern stretck stockings. I've never been able to wear fine hosiery before because I can almost rip sheer stockings by looking at them.

I have received that amazing vintage party dress from the 50's, which measurements looked ridiculously small. I was determined to let the seams out a bit and wear it over my corset, but it turns out it fits like a charm as is (over my corset still)! I have a burlesque party I'd like to attend in a couple of weeks so I'm trying to get used to my corset. I've had it for 6 month and haven't really worn it except one day at Fetish Evolution. It is surprisingly comfy (I am a complete corset noob)! I went out and about yesterday while wearing it under my clothes and it was lovely.

So, since I might become a more regular corset wearer (we'll see) I have started browsing corset websites to drool. Provided that I don't get turned off for some reason, this might become my next obsession. *sigh* I am now drooling on [ profile] sparklewren's work. Recommendations are welcome! I like vintage looking corsets, pastel colours and cording. This image makes me swoon:


It's weird how everything I am passionate about is so overly feminine when my sex drive is such shit. And how everything can be seen as a way to constrict the body, when mine is already so fucked up. Hmm... Is it bad, doc?
melle_chantilly: (Valhalla)
 Haven't blogged in a while. I am so tired I can barely do anything besides work. A bit more than 2 weeks ago I had another order for Lady Gaga so maybe I haven't recovered yet from all the hard work? It seems like it was forever ago, I had to count in my planning to realize it was so recent. I haven't been able to rest properly since then, lots of work, always. It's good but I'm starting to think of how to make things work so I can take more time off. And first thing is I need a bigger place but moving just stresses me out to no end.

I am currently reading Get Real by Donald Westlake and enjoying it a lot. The writing is also very simple, with short sentences, which is good given my current exhaustion. I am binging on Law and Order SVU on weekends and nothing else much. I was put off watching this show for a while after a few stuff I head but I found out that it was actually pretty good.

I've also had a vintage craze and bought a few cheap dresses on Etsy that I doctored a bit to fit me better. I'm expecting that one, which was a bit more expensive (but insanely cheap since it is a silk/cotton 50's party dress) and it is going to need a lot of work (and wearing a corset) to fit me but I'm feeling rather confident about my sewing skills. I need to fix my sewing machine because it doesn't work properly anymore (one side of the seam is nice, the other is just a shitton of tangled mess). Maybe it just need to be oiled and calibrated again.

So yeah, I'm not dead yet!
melle_chantilly: (Glossy Red Lips)
 I made up my mind and acquired the most lovely pumps yesterday. Shiny patent leather with 5” heel and 1” platform. They're very comfortable, just the perfect height.
I enjoyed shopping at the high end corner of the dept store. Contrary to popular belief, most sales clerks are very pleasant and helpful (whether you buy or not).
Just as I made the purchase, I felt a super strong wave of migraine coming (coincidence? Lol) and the man ran all over the place to find me a glass of water so I could take a tablet.
Anyway, here they are (had fun with the mirrors of my angle wardrobe):

My metalware supplier, who is firstly a leather supplier, sold me a bottle of leather relaxer and this stuff is amazing. I don't know how I could live without it. I have a few pair of shoes that are a bit narrow on some spots and this product makes temporarily leather really pliable so you can insert shoetrees or just mould it by hand to enlarge it a bit. It is in fact the product shoe maker use to shape the leather in the form of a shoe. I tested it on some old pairs I never wear because of the discomfort and it worked seamlessly. Yay!

But I digress. After shopping I met up with my best friend, NL., and we went to rue Saint Anne, not far from the dept store to eat Japanese in a restaurant I've visited a few times a year for about 10 years now. It is really the only place I genuinely enjoy eating yakitori. I love the place also because it's the only restaurant of the area where I don't feel rushed to eat (most of them have long queues outside in the evening, but this one is a little bit pricier, not really actually, it's more that the other restaurant are very very cheap.) Maybe not the best timing to go eat Japanese, but the people at the restaurant seemed unaffected, and the boss, who always recognize me despite my visiting really every 6 months, showed me photos of the baby a friend who used to work there just had.

So we had one yakitori menu and a few little separate things: Japanese omelette, onigiris, karaage (fried chicken) and shared everything. We drank grilled rice tea and umeshu (plum wine). Lovely lovely evening.

I was pretty energetic for the past two days and it felt so good. For the past two weeks I was very tired for the first days of the week and energetic from Thursday on. Today, well, I'm a bit wrecked lol. I ended up walking quite a lot yesterday and rushing things to manage to have some time in the evening. But I have my new assistant coming today and I am hoping she will help me quite a bit with things. It's her first “real” day (not counting the 2 trial days) ! :)
melle_chantilly: (Glossy Red Lips)
I love shoes. I love high heels. I love the objects. I could display them like art pieces. I love their architecture, their perfection. And I love wearing them. I love how they make me feel more energetic, more powerful, taller, but also more fragile.

I usually try to compromise between comfort and height, and manage to find shoes that are more than bearable usually. I believe one's feet need a bit of training to be comfortable in heels, analogously to the training for tight-lacing corsets.
After months of wearing mostly flats (and my beloved pair of Chie Mihara, which are super comfy mid heels), I have taken on wearing heels again. I don't know if it's related to yoga or what, but I'm more comfortable in heels than I've ever been. Hey, even my back is thanking me!

I'm now lusting after a pair of patent pumps at an indecent price. Tried them on today, still pondering. I've never put so much in shoes, so I think another week of good thinking is in order.

I can't help it, I really love shoes. Just like I love lingerie, I think I mostly love wearing them for myself. (I also have realized lately that I tried to dress better lately to fit better with what I think I should look like as a designer. I enjoy that too.) But I can't help being bothered as a feminist: why am I drawn to such hyper-feminizing objects? Why am I self-inflicting something that is, let's not kid myself there, just another layer of discomfort? What does it make me if I feel better/stronger with high heels?

I am of course strongly subjected to gender norms, because I'm living in this society. And I don't think the most feminist person can ever get completely free from those. And I don't think it is intrinsically wrong to believe that men and women are different and to want to be feminine, as long as it doesn't feel mandatory. Shoes exist, its industry is large and produces very appealing items for people who have a keen eye for shapes and composition.

But I shake the feeling that my love for shoes is a sort of sexist trap I fell into. Okay, heels make legs look longer, slimmer, firmer. But first, why should women want to have longer, slimmer and firmer legs? Why always better? Why always perfect? And then, why shouldn't men want the same? I know, I know, it sounds candid, but I'm just writing it as it comes, stating the obvious. It's okay to want to use artifice for aesthetic purpose but why does it have to be uncomfortable or plain painful? And why should women have it way worse than men? Women have heels, make up, waxing, garter belts, stockings... Apart from ties, and maybe shaving, today's men have it pretty easy, I think.

What is interesting is that many items that are nowadays viewed as solely feminine used to be worn by men and women, and even exclusively by men. Men used to wear make up, stockings and heels, and lace used to be the sole property of men before the 16th century. So when did men stop doing crazy things to look pretty? And why? Until now my research has been fruitless so feel free to enlighten me if you are versed on the subject.

A theory I have about the passion that women can have for shoes, which is very comparable to the obsession for lingerie, is that both shoes and bras are, in addition to be stereotypically feminine, very difficult to fit. Some women feel that they “match” one brand more than the other and it is likely to be true. Shoe makers work with shapes that they use to form the leather onto. You'll notice that a particular designer will mostly do only a few particular shapes of shoes, that's because of said forms. The next seasons, they will use these forms for their cheaper line.

Bra sizes, as I rambled about it extensively before, are absurdly inconsistent and misleading. The chase for the mythic well-fitting bra can be never-ending. The same goes for shoes. Just like breasts, feet come in all sizes and shapes, some are wide, some are narrow, some have one toe that protrudes, some have another, some are asymmetrical... Rationalizing all those data into standard sizes is impossible. So some brands will choose to make mostly narrow shoes, some will arch their heels a certain way, but in the end, no one can ever be comfortable in a given size in every brands.

Just like I'm a 80E/30E, I believe I'm a weird shoe size. After roaming in the department store and trying all the shiny shoes I could spot, mostly in very high end brands, I came to the conclusion that my actual shoe size might be 36 ¼. So either I'm a fucking weird beast, or maybe it's just that I am more informed than most consumers and that I expect products that really fit me. I also think that my Achilles' heel is very flat, because as snug as they are, shoes from some particular brands just won't hold. I take a step and they just slide off. Maybe half of the brands do that (bye bye Sergio Rossi) and the rest stay put. For a woman with a stronger Achilles' heel, the brands that work for me are probably instant blisters makers.

Anyway, that was quite a rambling. I had fun going through the department store and being taken care of by the high-end brands clerks. Now, the girl I am has her mind set on the most expensive pair. I didn't buy anything yet, I'm pondering how reasonable it would be to be unreasonable. :)
melle_chantilly: (Chantilly)
 I was working today (well, a couple of hours finishing an order, and a few more hours of fun tweaking my bra pattern). I had already worked a bit later on Friday, getting ahead on my schedule and starting on Monday's work (that would be what I finished today). So, tomorrow: shopping! :) Math and I were having a hard time finding each other presents for Xmas so we've decided to go shopping together.

We still haven't really planned what we're going to cook for Xmas Eve with my mum. We're going to go to the butchers nearby that makes nice and fancy stuff for the holidays and pick something, and we'll get an assortment of starters at the traiteur downstairs. I'd like to make roasted chestnuts (cooking with the meat) and mashed sweet potatoes. We also need to get a dessert!

My mother will see my tattoo for the first time on Friday. It might be silly but I hope that maybe she'll like it. Also, I realized, after stumbling on a (not so great) Lutens-inspired photoshoot, that my love for Serge Luten's work might have influenced my tattoo design, and not just a little. Maybe it was obvious for everyone who knows me, but it wasn't conscious on my part! But it makes me happy.

Lutens has shot many series of women covered in lace. Now that I think about it, it would be lovely to get the lace pattern on my whole body, lol. 

I stumbled on a picture of Lutens that I had never seen before, while looking for the lace one. So I'm posting it, just because. :)

melle_chantilly: (Glossy Red Lips)
When we visited Berlin a few months ago with Math, I acquired a beautiful corset from To.mTo. It is my first proper corset (I only own a Vollers) and it is a beautiful piece of craftmanship. I haven't worn it outside yet and I was wondering earlier what to wear with it. I might make myself a simple brown latex dress to go with it, although I feel more and more like adding a little diversity to my party outfits, and not wearing just latex anymore.

 <- Here it is, lovely lovely! :)

I also have bought some fancy eye patches at Gothfoxdesigns. They have just arrived yesterday. I actually bought them to wear when striken by migraine. I have recently had strongly one sided migraines and blocking my hurting eye was quite helpful. One of them matches my corset. ;)

I have been lusting after a few items from Artifice Clothing too, but I don't own anything from them. It's quite new for me to want to buy alternative clothing since I can make my own stuff. But I realize how much I love well made alternative clothing, and I love to purchase at another independent designer.

Anyway, earlier today, I thought that maybe one day I could branch out and open a shop where I would sell a selection of items by designers that I really love. Not just my stuff anymore, but a variety of corsets, jewels, clothing and accessories. If it were to ever happen, it would be in a long time from now, of course. And it will most likely remain a fantasy.

But I noticed that it is the first time since I started HMSlatex that I have thought of ever doing something else than just making and selling my own latex. The thought took my by surprise, I must say. I guess it's the sign that I finally feel confident now in my business, financially and mentally. I can afford a workshop, an assistant. I know that it won't collapse tomorrow, even if there will be ups and downs. There are loads of stuff to accomplish. It is in fact just the beginning, but it's getting there. I don't know where, but it's getting somewhere, steadily.


melle_chantilly: (Default)

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