Susan Muncey has been delighting us since The Dabbler’s inception with her Saturday Retroprogressive column, which brought to light all manner of curious and wonderful developments in the world of style and design. But what we really want to read about, of course, is Susan herself and her life as a trend-forecaster-about-town. So here is the first instalment of her new diary-style column, Life of Style…

My mind has been working overtime recently.  Whilst driving around London carrying out errands the other day, I nearly caused two accidents. The first was when I was rushing across town to have my hair done in West London. I needn’t have bothered as my ingeniously creative hairdresser, Darrin, is invariably running late.

He’s based at 10500 in Westbourne Park Road – a grunge-cool hangout for Notting Hillbilly fashion, media and music types. I’ve been going there for years, along with the likes of Julien Macdonald and Kelly Hoppen. Ever-opportunistic owner, Anthony Carenza, has recently turned the buzzing salon into something of a modern art gallery. Light boxes in the basement feature the works of Danish (he calls it ‘conceptual’, I’d call it ‘pop’) artist, Kristian von Hornsleth. Pornography aside, messages scream out from the tangled mess of colour. See Hornsleth’s website for the story behind The Village Project Uganda portraits (above left), sales of which helped to provide farm animals for those involved. And his School Massacre Project is grotesquely apposite after recent events in Connecticut.

Darrin tells me that the prints on glass make the salon too dark for him to see exactly what he’s doing, which slightly worries me…

***

My second near miss occurred when I was driving back from the store where I’d been buying Jars non-dishwasher safe crockery to replace the items I destroyed in my dishwasher… and trousers for my husband, which I thought would be in the sale, but weren’t. Why can’t men buy their own bloody trousers, anyway?

I was listening to an item on BBC Radio London about dogs and I was utterly flabbergasted. It was a ‘phone-in with a vet answering questions from the public. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing  – concerns over too much carbohydrate in dog food, callers’ efforts to get the right balance of wet and dry food and to find food suitable for the shape of their dogs’ mouths…  For heaven’s sake, half the world is starving!  Most mindnumbing of all were the calls from those worried their dogs would be poisoned if fed raw meat, or choke to death if given bones to chew on.

This year I received quite a few Christmas cards featuring – and in some cases even signed by – pet dogs. I’m worried that dogs may make a bid for world domination… if computers don’t get there first.

***

Computers are, of course, ultimately to blame for my brain and steering wheel going into overdrive.  Thanks to the demands of the digital age, I’ve so many ideas and projects on the go, I’m having a crisis over what to do and in which order.  I spend so long creating and re-ordering lists that it’s difficult to find the time to actually get anything completed… And it doesn’t help that I’m also trying to work my way through a thousand page manual – Adobe Creative Suite 6: Design and Web Premium for Dummies. I can highly recommend this, by the way, if only for the cartoons by Rich Tennant – they’re quite the dog’s bollocks!

 

Susan Muncey is a trend forecaster, blogger and founder of online curiosity shop, ShopCurious.com.

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  1. malty on Tuesday 8, 2013

    Dogs are the new black Susan, Harrods are apparently flogging Bichons at £1700 per pooch. As the going rate is circa £600 this may be considered well into rip-off territory.
    Reference the age old trouser conflict, “saw them in…..thought you might like them”, how can we males, mere mortals after all, refuse such largesse.
    If only my tonsorial parlour, in Edinburgh’s Queen St, the dog-end of Queen St, could boast such a collection of avant-guard decoration, two prints of the castle and a signed photie of an obscure Hibs centre forward grace the walls with their presence. .

  2. Susan on Tuesday 8, 2013

    Malty, Harrods gifts for pets include a range of dog perfumes at £52.95 for a 56 ml bottle… There are four fragrances, including Big Dawg: ‘A aromatic medley of bergamot and neroli, with a touch, of lavender and musk creates this ideal scent for the sophisticated modern dog.’

    • malty on Tuesday 8, 2013

      Susan, mentioned to our dogs that Harrods are offering a range of canine fragrances, Bailey was singularly unimpressed and feels that his George Saunders demeanor is all that is needed to seduce that big bitch at the Buccleuch hunt’s kennels. Kizzy, however, asks is it available as a roll on deodorant and will it be cheaper on Amazon.

    • George on Tuesday 8, 2013

      That seems cruel to the dogs, given their obvious preference for ripe dead squirrel and such to roll in.

  3. Worm on Tuesday 8, 2013

    Great new column Susan! And don’t get me started on man’s best friend, being in my line of work I have too many horror stories to mention regarding anthropomorphism gone mad!

    My line of work also encompasses adobe creative suite – that’s quite an undertaking you’ve set yourself to learn it by using the book, it’s like a phone book! I just fiddle around with adobe and learn things by accident as I go along!

    • Susan on Tuesday 8, 2013

      Yes, Worm, trial and error is definitely the best way with Adobe – I’m just using the book to try and make sense of it all! Am currently trying to master digital fashion illustration (which demands great patience) and am also doing a course in magazine publishing.

    • malty on Tuesday 8, 2013

      Can’t imagine you as the local postie Worm.

  4. [...] yet again by in-house creativity, to wit Susan’s revelations vis-a-vis ‘Big Dawg’ parfum de chien, I tender slang’s firm hand on the [...]

  5. Gaw on Tuesday 8, 2013

    I assume “Darrin” is another product of his ingenious creativity? Nice one.