Monday, 24 November 2014

EMBROIDERED VELVET AND LEATHER








First off, seen so many good films recently - Mr. Turner, Interstellar, Imitation Game, Hunger Games...You know, all the "Game" films.  None of which has anything to do with this outfit, but it's nice to talk about things you've enjoyed, right?  Another thing I've been very much enjoying is the Selfridges Food Hall, I just go there to get my milk and stuff.  NOT REALLY.  What I really mean is that I've been very much enjoying the Cocodoughs they sell there, which are just Cronuts under a different name.  Would a Cronut by any other name taste as delicious?  The answer is categorically, yes.  These ones are made by Cocomaya and you can get them at places other than Selfridges, but I like a trip there to ogle their window displays dripping in gold and sleepy Father Christmas's.  

Anyway.  This outfit is yet another attempt to do a high street version of the Saint Laurent A/W 2014 collection, which had a lot of shirts with black neck ties, black opaque tights, and the mens collection showed amazing new ways to wear a leather jacket.  The shorts are from Missguided, as are the shoes, the shirt is from ASOS, as is the bag, and my old faithful leather jacket is so ancient I can't remember where it's from.  

Friday, 21 November 2014

PATTY & BUN






Finally made a trip to Patty & Bun, burger purveyors famous for their great quality patties and incredible rosemary sea salt chips.  Oh my lord those chips, I was gasping for water after eating them, but they're so worth it.  The stars of the show were definitely the burgers (Ari Gold is my favourite).  They're way more sloppy than Meat Market/Mission/Liquor, but they nudge their way to the top with amazing relish and bright yellow cheese that tastes unexpectedly creamy and fantastic.  In fact the two men next to us ordered three between them so they could have one and a half.  On Monday.  At lunchtime.  I was very impressed.  At the James Street restaurant you will always have to queue - we got there bang on at opening time and it was already full - but apparently the Liverpool Street branch is larger and therefore less busy.  I will have to selflessly pay them a visit to find out if this is true.  

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

NOUGHTIES STYLE ICONS (GULP)


This is a piece I wrote for The Debrief (who I love) about some scary/exciting style reboots headed our way. 

We have some news. And you might want to take a seat for it. Look, there's no good way to say this – the Noughties are back.

We know, we know, but trust us: the catwalks in London, Paris and NY have long been hinting that a revival of the decade of dubious style is coming, and we can't ignore it any longer.  This time next year, we'll all be lusting over low-rise jeans, long sleeve mesh tops, and square toed ankle boots. The word “Bootcut” will be Googled more than ever before. And suddenly we'll feel drawn to our GHD's for straight, brittle hair that lies flat against our sparkly cheeks. You never, know we might even start investing in glittery butterfly clips and G-Shock watches.  

Maybe we're over-reacting. Perhaps some people are thrilled about this new development. 'Finally!' they'll shout, grabbing their asymmetrical dresses and silver strappy sandals.  'Yes!' they'll air punch, pulling out their cargo trousers and cropped camouflage tops. But for those of you concerned by this news we're here to help. In times of trouble and confusion it always helps to turn to that one reliable source of fashion inspiration – films and TV shows.  And thank god, once again they've saved us. The screen sirens of yore (well, ten years ago) can show us the light through the gap in our flared jeans.

Here's a few throwback TV style icons you might want to take inspiration from: 

BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER


One way to do the tricky trend that is bootcut jeans Marques Almeida style is the 'Charmed'/'Buffy' way. It seems witches and vampire killers really know how to nail this look. So maybe wear those bootcuts with a floaty camisole and a pointless chunky belt. There should be echoes of Britney's double denim, and also the stage outfits for irish pop outfit B*witched. No seriously guys, you might want to start considering fabric that is “embellished”.  

  And why just wear the jeans when you can also wear a matching long sleeved denim T-shirt? Almeida's collection with Topshop, all lime green silk vests and crinkly blazers, is ideal for some demon hunting Halliwell sisters style. How about a frayed denim skirt worn with an open taffeta shirt and a plain white tee? Or a knitted pencil skirt and a bucket hat?  Ideal for Buffy in the summer months, when her boyfriend is seriously considering sucking her blood. 

REGINA GEORGE IN MEAN GIRLS. WHAT ELSE?


The most popular girls of North Shore High wear pink on Wednesdays, but Moschino's women wear it seven days a week judging by the latest collection. Jeremy Scott is clearly doing his best to make the label top of the Instagram pops, drawing our eyes to his new Barbie-inspired collection faster than the Elle Woods bend-and-snap could. Pink is clearly going to be huge, as are chain belts, sequins and roller-skating. And it looks like co-ords could be staying, especially when we're talking about tracksuits that you definitely don't work out in. Well, maybe a smidge of arm toning with two 1lb bright pink weights.  

All of this is immediately remiscient of Regina George's trend setting cherry blossom hued kilts and her trademark suburban mall glamour. See also her mother, who slides her surgically enhanced bosoms into a velour tracksuit the same shade as cotton candy.


What was most notable about the Moschina show, fyi, was the energy and enthusiasm of the models.  Their matching big blonde blow-outs bounced as they grinned their way down the runway, they were perfectly embodying those high school girls that get stared at as they glide past the lockers. This look is hard to pull off, but it's worth a try if you don't want to end up in fashion's burn book.

BLAIR WALDORF'S UPPER EAST SIDER GOSSIP GIRL GARMS


The preppy schoolgirl look never really seems to go away. She's there every season, looking down on us all, flicking her hair and picking some non-existent lint off her navy blazer and crisp white blouse. That said, Chanel's collection had a decidedly 2000s spin on this tried and tested look.

Alongside the pinky purple tweed fitted suits and thigh length breton cardigans they mixed in metallic sequins, opaque tights with pale two piece skirt suits, floaty white mini dresses just perfect for rolling around the Hamptons, and floral print shirts with ruffles. It hit the perfect Blair Waldorf note of 'Hey I'm young and still into hair-bands, pastels and petty arguments over boys, but that doesn't mean I don't have the money to dress like a grown up.'


Plus there was gold EVERYWHERE. Gold belts, gold lurex tights, even gold brogues. Gold means money. Upper East Side money.

MARISSA COOPER'S CALIFORNIAN VIBES



Marissa Cooper was the ultimate 2000s California girl. She was a beach babe with caramel skin and caramel hair, and she was loaded. Of course she was also a teenager, so while she had the money to strut down the hallway in full-on Chanel, she was also very casual and comfortable. And like most of the noughties icons on this list, she liked her denim. Being a West Coast socialite she was drawn to summery colours and she totally rang the boho alarm: lots of bangles, layers of necklaces (including pearls, naturally), peasant blouses, and asymmetrical skirts.


There's a bit of Roland Mouret's new collection about her, likewise Jonathan Saunders, but the collections I think she would have really loved this season are Burberry Prorsum, with a splash of Etro. The latter saw models strolling down the runway in midi skirts decorated with big sunset-hued sequins, worn with fitted denim jackets and sneakers. Perfect for the statuesque Marissa when she's on the hoof from Math class. And since she was a collector of bold accessories I think she would have lusted after these multi-coloured bowling bags.  Meanwhile Etro's collection of 2000s Sienna Miller-esque dresses and intense embroidery. Marissa would never have worn an entire look from the collection, but I could see her in one of the dresses, probably worn with a woven belt round her hips, and a scarf round her head.  Oh, and bangles. Always bangles.

Friday, 14 November 2014

PRINTS ON PRINTS ON BOOTS







WINTER IS COMING.  Well, actually, it's here.  I spent a lot of time yesterday researching chocolate advent calendar options, and there is a jar of mince pie filling in my kitchen cupboard.  While we're still not quite ready to have the heating on 24/7, I'm happy the cold air means I get to wear my new coat from ASOS, it's so furry and silky.  Also the other day I got a text from my best friend Louise, informing me of the sad news that apparently, "Vagabond boots are over".  She heard it from Lizzy from MSMR (who she manages), so it MUST BE TRUE.  I still want to wear mine all the time, so the ankle boot ennui must not have reached London yet, but I have been on the lookout for some '60s style suede go-go boots for the last couple of months - so what does that mean?!  I actually got these ones second hand from Ebay, and accidentally bought two pairs (long story, I'm an over-eager bidder) so if anyone wants some similar in a size 7, hit me up.

The dress is from Missguided, I'm trying to dress like the Saint Laurent A/W 2014 collection as MUCH as possible (as cheaply as possible), so this is my first attempt at doing that.  I want a white cape.  Anyone else feel that same need?

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

TEEN WITCH SPELL BY SPELL

I dug up this piece I wrote a while ago because it's a great example of '80s crazy-teen films, and because I completely adore this movie.  In general I love films about witches. Not ones where they’re burnt at the stake, but ones where they conjure up love potions with hilarious/terrible consequences (E.g. The Craft). This week I took a walk down nostalgia lane (for a change – seriously someone give me a map that leads to the present day), and revisited one of my old favourites, Teen Witch. To save you guys the trouble of having to set aside an hour and a half to watch it, I thought I’d give you a spell by spell account here. I’d warn you with a SPOILER ALERT, but seriously, this film is dripping in 80s teen movie cliché so I don't think I'm in any danger of a ruining a The Sixth Sense style plot twist.  This isn't really a Style Dissection as I didn't really want to champion many of the outfits on display, wonderful as they are...but more a love letter to a time when movies like this still got made.  
The film begins with a pretty awesome sax solo – is there any other type? A long piece of blue silk is fluttering languidly in the breeze as the camera glides along the top of the… wait, are we on the top of a building?! Okay. No, it’s fine, it’s just if I was going to have a romantic fantasy dream I don’t think I’d set it in an urban cityscape, but maybe that’s just me. Anyway, one thing we can all agree on is that this is definitely a fantasy dream sequence. Here’s why:
  1. A man is standing in a fake doorway, his blousy silk shirt is unbuttoned to the navel.
  2. It’s in slo-mo.
  3. The girl has red hair yet is dressed in a scarlet body con dress – sadly it is often only in our fantasies that we are brave enough to attempt clashing hair/clothes combos.
  4. They’re doing that “oooh let’s get really close to each other so it looks like we might kiss…nah lets dance instead!” thing. This almost never happens to me in real life.
Alarm clock. We’re brought back to reality with a crash. Meet Louise Miller, a pretty ordinary girl who lives in the suburbs, wears clothes only in a sludge brown palette and has a super annoying younger brother.  This is him by the way, he looks like a young Tom Cruise with what I hope is chocolate smeared on his cheeks:
Oh no! Louise’s little brother has found a poem she wrote about the guy she’s secretly in love with! Whoa, I totally didn’t see that one coming! Luckily, Louise snaffles the poem back off him. She cycles to school with her Kooky Best Friend who has corkscrew black hair and is wearing a big floppy hat. She’s already my favourite character. As they leave Louise’s house, they see the jock Louise is in love with picking up his perfect girlfriend. Okay, this man is clearly 30 years old, so although he might have his own car, he must be have a lot of issues to still be in High School.
We’re seven minutes into the film and we’ve got ourselves our second dance sequence. A gang of men, also 30, are trying to break dance in the school corridor to some minimal techno. We know they’re “bad news” because they’re leaning on Louise’s locker and it takes them, like, 32 seconds to move. Seriously when are the police getting here?
The casting director for this film must have garnered their ideas of what "Geeks" look like from Saved By The Bell. Unfortunately for them, these two are actually the coolest kids we’ve seen so far.
The walking '80s nerd stereotypes are talking to Louise, so we know she’s definitely NOT POPULAR. We then have a close up of the jock’s girlfriend flicking her fluffy blonde hair. Well, she’s trying to flick it but it’s been blow-dried and hairsprayed so much it doesn’t really move. Hot.
Next up, ritual humiliation. Louise’s poem accidentally is discovered by her mean and tweedy English teacher. The jock is in the same class as her! We know it’s about him! Cringe!
Third dance sequence in the girls locker room. This section has been crow-barred into the film under the flimsy pretence of, “We’re cheerleaders and we have a new cheer!” It’s basically ten girls kicking their way around the lockers in high-leg purple leotards. Their cheer is rubbish, they just shout “We like boys!” over and over again, which makes me doubt whether or not they’re the school’s official team. Especially since they have to rehearse in the changing rooms.
Louise is cycling home in the rain when her bike gets nudged off the road by, guess who, the jock and his girlfriend. The jock wants to stay and help her (nice man) but his girlfriend pressures him into leaving Louise to fend for herself (nasty lady, so it's fine for Louise to steal her boyfriend). Louise begins walking her bike home but spots a creepy house she’s never seen before and, obviously, decides to enter it unbidden and snoop around.
The house is owned by a woman who wears way too much jewellery (pictured above). She reads Louise’s palm and tells her that she’s descended from one of the Salem witches. She says that Louise has magic powers that will come into maturity when she turns 16 in a few days. Louise is suitably freaked out and runs out of Jewellery Over-Kill’s house without saying thank you.
Cut to Louise’s birthday. She’s sitting with her family and a huge cake and they’re discussing the fact no one has turned up to her party. This is actually a really sad scene. People not turning up to someone’s party always gets me.  Luckily the sadness is tempered by the following hilarious sex education sequence. A mature lady saying the word “condom” will ALWAYS be funny!
Louise finds a cool pendant necklace in the drama cupboard. She puts it on and suddenly the hip girls start talking to her. Kooky Best Friend is really supportive and excited for Louise's new popularity which shows that she’s an awesome person and should have had a bigger part in the narrative.
Louise goes to the prom in a super dowdy outfit with Rent-A-Geek number 3 who looks like a young Justin Theroux. 
In the girls bathroom, Louise gets changed into the worst outfit I’ve ever seen in my life times infinity. It’s fish net tights, a tartan red mini skirt with a neon pink tutu on top, a bright blue shirt tied at the navel and she’s fluffed up her fringe so it looks like a hamster waving.
The jock is dancing with his girlfriend at the prom.  Louise looks at him and murmurs, “I wish he’d come over here”. Then he totally does! He asks her if he can talk to her privately. They go outside where, for some unexplained reason, there are loads of hay bales. The jock has no personality so he just says something inane about the stars.
They go behind a bale and it’s looking pretty promising but it turns out he just wants a tutor because he’s 30 and still hasn’t graduated from High School. Louise agrees and then gets driven home by Justin Theroux, whom she accidentally makes disappear. Then she turns her annoying little brother into a dog. Newsflash: this girl’s got gifts.
She returns to Jewellery Over-Kill who explains that with Louise’s powers and her knowledge, they can rule the world!  Louise asks about making a love potion, which is a spectacularly lame first spell. She does it anyway and invites jock over for some tutoring. He has to sit on her bed for the potion to work, so I can only assume that Louise is a particular type of witch who imbibes spells into people’s bums. She doesn’t manage to make it happen as he’s desperate to sit on a chair for some reason, so they just get on with studying. Maybe his bum has been magic-attacked before.  
Cue magic montage sequence with Louise making a voodoo doll of her evil English teacher and an incredible scene where Kooky Best Friend gains magical confidence and has a sassy rap-off with one of the break-dancing bad boys. 



She’s all up in his grill and he loves it. I kinda wish the film had just been about these two.
Louise gets popular by making a popular spell using the jacket of a singer called Shana. Shana is her favourite musical artist, which makes sense because when we see Shana at her gig she is wearing the worst outfit I’ve ever seen in my life part two.
After obtaining the jacket and wearing it while she spins around in her bedroom, Louise becomes seriously cool.  And by that I mean she has big hair, wears socks with her heels and is never seen out of a ra-ra skirt.  Time for the second montage: Louise flicking her hair around, Louise being helped out of cars by boys, people applauding Louise when she walks into class and Louise being rapped to in the street by the break-dancers.  I wish being cool was actually like that.  Of course, in the midst of this Louise has completely forgotten about her roots, so the montage is interlaced with shots of Kooky Best Friend waving slowly, looking forlorn or dropping her books out of sadness.  Girl, you’re better off without her, just keep rocking the hats.
Finally, Louise gets together with the jock.  They have an afternoon makeout session  in an abandoned shack.  It all seems a bit seedy – the sexy saxaphone is back – but I guess they had to shoot it early in the day because the jock’s five o’clock shadow was threatening to return by nightfall.  This scene is unutterably weird.  The jock leaves his clothing around the house for Louise to come find him, “Chase me, chase me!”
Eventually she discovers him perched on the banister like a creepy vest goblin.
Louise soon learns that popularity, with all its delicious trappings, isn't that great.  Particularly when there are people camped on your front lawn with signs and banners.  Hey, we’ve all been there.
She freaks out and runs to Jewellry Over-Kill who tells her that “the real magic is believing in yourself”.  Louise realises she can’t go to the dance with the jock because she’s been lying to him about her true self.  She takes Jewellry Over-Kill instead (of course) but when she turns up the jock is there dancing with his ex.  He looks super pleased to see Louise, as does his ex-girlfriend.  I find that a bit odd, but maybe there’s a dynamic to their relationship I didn’t pick up on.
Louise chucks her magic pendant over to Jewellery Over-Kill who snatches it out of the air hungrily. Oh great, she’s got ANOTHER necklace.  Then Louise and the jock do some sultry dry ice dancing.
Personally I’d take magical powers over this 30 year old High School jock any day.  ROLL CREDITS.

Friday, 7 November 2014

DARK CHOCOLATE BROWNIE CUPCAKES








I've never been that into cupcakes, mainly because a cupcake equals a set portion of cake.  I will eat as much cake as I want, thanks, I don't need nobody telling me how much I should have.  This attitude comes from my mum - growing up she taught me that when you're buying a slice of a pre-cut cake you go for the biggest one with the most icing, even if that means asking the person serving to take a slice from the middle and everyone in the shop/queue thinks you're really picky and annoying. 

I've always been proud of the amount of cake I can eat.  There's never a crumb left on my plate, no matter how many helpings I've had, and at birthday parties I will usually end the night in the kitchen, slicing off chunks of cake and eating them with my fingers.  My family have lots of cake-based anecdotes they like to reel off, for example the time I kept disappearing into the kitchen at regular intervals when we had family over - when they brought out my mum's lemon coconut cake they discovered it was covered in icing pockmarks from where I'd been picking at it and eating it in secret.

That said, I did like the idea of doing a sort of truffle cupcake.  One so rich and dark and chocolatey it was like a shot of cake.  So that's where this recipe comes in.  It requires a LOT of dark chocolate (I think you could also do it with milk chocolate, although I'm yet to try that myself), and the sponge is very dense and brownie-like, particularly since I used plain flour, and not much of it at that.  (This recipe would also work well if you need to use gluten free flour, or are cooking for a diabetic as it requires very little sugar).  I added some Tia Maria to emphasise the truffle/shot-ness of it, but you could omit that.  Or try a different bit of booze.  Or some orange juice.  I also want to tweak it to try making a pink champagne truffle cupcake.  So many options.  This was also my first time making a ganache icing OH HELLO.  Definitely worth sneaking off into the kitchen to eat as much of that as possible.

Makes about 20 cupcakes.  

FOR THE CAKES
250g good quality dark chocolate
250g butter
5 eggs
2 egg yolks (I KNOW, IT'S EGG CENTRAL)
100g caster sugar
30g plain flour
30g cocoa powder
Tia Maria (as much or as little as you like).  

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees centigrade or equivalent.  Melt the butter in a saucepan, then add the chocolate and take it off the heat.  Stir together until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.  Leave to cool while you whisk together the sugar and aaaaall those eggs until you have a thick frothy, creamy consistency.  Add the Tia Maria (I used about two tablespoons).  Fold this carefully into the chocolate and butter mixture.  Sift the cocoa powder and flour into the mixture and fold it all together.  Put cupcake cases into a cupcake tray and spoon the cake mix into them.  You can fill all the way up to the top of the cases as they won't rise too much.  Pop them in the oven and check them after about 20 minutes, do the knife/wooden skewer check.  Mine only took that long, but my oven seems to bake quite quickly. Leave them to cool. 

FOR THE GANACHE ICING
350g Dark chocolate 
250ml Whipping cream
65g Golden syrup
75g Butter
Tia Maria

Cut the chocolate into chunks and put it in a heatproof bowl.  Then heat up the cream and the syrup until it's boiling.  As quickly as possible pour it over the chocolate.  Using a ballon whisk in the middle of the bowl mix gently in a very small circle.  You want to gradually bring the chocolate and cream together, so try to stay in the centre, and try not to create any air bubbles.  It takes a bit of time but it's worth it when suddenly you have a smooth dark chocolate ganache.  When that happens you can be less careful and mix in the butter and Tia Maria to taste.  I used about a tablespoon.  

Before icing the cakes I put the ganache in the fridge as it was taking ages to become more solid and I was a bit worried.  This worked great for me, but if you're not a control freak you could just leave it for a couple of ours and it will stiffen up.  I tried to pipe it onto the cakes but I'm terrible at piping so in the end I just smoothed it on with a palate knife and stuck on some silver balls.  Boozy dark cupcake shots. 

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

THE SCORE: SCREAM




(This is a post I originally wrote for Noisey <3)

Hey, do you like scary movies?

Released in 1996 the first installment in Wes Craven's incredibly successful series of classic slasher movies (we're up to the 4th now) is pretty perfect.  It's like a '90s Point Horror book smeared onto the big screen.  I used to (still do) read a lot of Point Horror, mostly because I liked the descriptions of the outfits the characters wore.  There was one particularly evil and murderous girlfriend who wore a fluffy dark green jumper and kilt, with long red hair.  I always thought she sounded so stylish.  As well as dangerous and psychopathic.

The scripts for the all the Scream films except the third were written by Kevin Williamson who also wrote Dawson's Creek, I Know What You Did Last Summer, The Vampire Diaries, and The Faculty, amongst others.  He's my hero, and Scream is full of all his trademark motifs - the dialogue is laced with quick-fire pithy wit, the setting is a beautiful suburban town, "Nothing terrible could ever happen in a place as lovely as this!?", teenagers are frustrated by the "system" and how they fit into it, there's a lot of talking about sex but not that much actual sex, his characters reference scary films while in a scary film, "Please don't kill me Mr. Ghostface!  I want to be in the sequel!", and of course one of the main characters is a film buff.  Whenever Williamson plops one of those into something I always assume he's writing himself into the action.  He is Dawson Leery and he is Randy Meeks.

But more than some of the other projects Williamson has been involved in, this film is cool.  The soundtrack, featuring Nick Cave, The Connells and Alice Cooper, tapped into the growing demand in the '90s for movies to have music The Kids would want to buy and listen to at home so they could feel fashionable.  Oh and the outfits in this film are so, so, so good.  Apparently '90s scream queens dressed fucking amazingly.

Let's start at the beginning, with Casey Becker.

CASEY




We hear Drew's voice before we see her.  But when we do see her she looks stunning.  That blonde bob with the heavy fringe.  The powdered skin with the dark plum lips.  And those pale lavender trousers with the cream jumper.  She must be one of the coolest cheerleaders in school, I mean, just check out at her babe of a boyfriend!


He is rocking the perfect pre-Y2K jock look, and I am always a fan.  Although those sneakers are a bit Dad-esque.  

Drew Barrymore was the first actor to show interest in the film and she was originally going to play the part of Sidney Prescott.  But sadly other commitments got in the way and she had to take the smaller role of Casey instead.  Still, it was her original enthusiasm and passion for the film that encouraged other big name actors and producers to sign on.  In an interview with Entertainment Weekly she said this of the script, "I loved that it actually got tongue and cheeky but it was still scary, it was this great game that sort of described genres and revived them at the same time and redefined them all in one script. I went bananas".  According to the internet, in order to keep Drew Barrymore looking scared and crying during the filming of her only scene, director Wes Craven kept telling her real life stories about animal cruelty. Drew loves the puppies apparently.

I love the internet.  I love that it is the home of facts like that. 

Casey accesorises her casual hanging-out-at-home outfit with a massive white wooden house, surrounded by nothing much but trees and fields.  


The production added that swing in the front yard before filming and the owners of the house liked it so much they kept it.  

"Oh Sandra that swing outside is just darling!", "Thanks Marie!  We love it, it reminds us of such happy times". 


Apparently there is still fake blood on the swing.  

If you like plants and gardening you can read an interview with the owners of the house about their property and it's vegetation here.  You're welcome. 

I should also mention Casey's phone as it makes me feel nostalgic for landlines and pot pourri, and it goes wonderfully with her outfit. 


SIDNEY

Sidney Prescott always seems like an odd slasher heroine to me.  I guess this film was made before we had really strong female roles in films and TV shows, with them kicking ass and fighting back...OK that's a huge generalisation.  Whatever, she sometimes seems really scream-y *snort*.  And in a film where so many of the characters are playful and witty, and delivering amazing one-liners, Sidney seems very vanilla.  She takes everything so seriously.  Although her mother was killed brutally the year before so maybe I'm being a teeny bit harsh, and perhaps she needs to be played completely straight in order to make the flippancy the other characters exhibit work.  Just some casual thoughts I have when I watch this film every year. 

Her wardrobe matches her personality, because this girl is 100% normcore.  She is the everywoman and as such she wears the most basic outfits imaginable.  Everything about her look is subtle.  Light denim jeans, soft cotton T-shirts and jumpers in muted tones, worn with black boots or white sneakers.  She looks like The Gap threw up all over her.  And she frickin' loved it.  






She must have been feeling so outta control on that day when she pulled on that red floral T-shirt.  I wonder if it has a matching cardigan.

Sidney doesn't really have any discernible character traits other than that she's a very tragic victim.  In fact the most interesting thing about her, sadly, is that she's dating a bad boy.  Billy Loomis.  We first see them together in Sidney's room when he climbs through the window and they makeout on the bed, a moment that's winkingly soundtracked by a cover of 'Don't Fear The Reaper' by Gus AKA Gus  Black AKA Anthony Penazola.

You may not know this, but in his varied career as a producer, song-writer and director Penazola has carved a niche for himself as the guy that makes videos for alt bands who were big in the '90s. His clients include Goo Goo Dolls and The Used, and he directed the documentary Tremendous Dynamite: The Making of Hombre Lobo about Eels.  You can watch the trailer for that here.

Oh actually I was wrong, the other thing to define Sidney is that she's a virgin.  So I guess that's why for her first screen appearance they dressed Neve Campbell in a floral nightie, her hair pulled back into a bouncy ponytail.  The hair stylist did that '90s thing of pulling out two bits of hair from her ponytail to frame her face.  Why did we do that?  When did we stop doing that?  It's so Joey Potter, hey, maybe this film used the same hair person?  Does Kevin Williamson have it written into his contract that he will only write female leads who are brunettes, wear stonewashed denim and have hair dangling around their cheeks?



But in this scene we also see there is one person who can push her towards some more naughty behaviour, good old Billy yet again. 


I always find Skeet's slightly gormless face when oogling her breasts in this scene funny.  I like to imagine Neve was wearing a hilarious joke bra - you know the type - and he was surprised and also trying not to laugh. 

Her other night time outfit is this big coral T-shirt and slouch socks.  Which is '90s costume designer shorthand for, "The female lead is now very sad because she has been hurt by the man in her life".  She should really be eating a big tub of Haagen-Daz and listening to Chris Isaak. 




By the way this is Sidney's house.  It is also secluded and absolutely HUGE.  This town is just littered with mansions and fields.  



That is a lot of cast iron garden furniture on her decking.  Two sets of tables and chairs very close together - what's the story there?!  

Anyway, we need to talk more about Billy Loomis...

BILLY

Billy comes from the Jordan Catalano/Troy Dyer school of styling.  He has the floppy hair, the sharp jawline, and the collection of white tees and flannel shirts to pair with his biker boots, jeans, and intense scowl. 






Oh and he's also a horror film obsessive, a psychopath, a serial killer and a real mom lover.  Can you say dreamboat?!


We don't get to know much about Billy's music taste, and I doubt he has much time to invest in expanding his record collection - serial killers have to be very organised and thorough - but with his, "Daddy did a bad thing" angst I feel like he's probably a Silverchair/Smashing Pumpkins fan.  Although I also don't think he's averse to a bit of Tupac.  

A musical motif for the first three Scream films is the song 'Red Right Hand' by Nick Cave from his album Murder Ballads, the band's biggest commercial success to date.  It was used in each of those movies, and is widely accepted as the unofficial theme song for the series.  It was also used in Dumb And Dumber two years earlier, which makes less sense.  I remember that film being creepy, but in a different way.  

Lyrically 'Red Right Hand' is perfect for the first film, Nick sings about the boy who, "seems so cute and true and groovy / But to get that boy up on the stand / And watch him raise / His red right hand".  I mean, that's just Billy.  His hands are scarlet. 

By the way 1996 was also the year that Tori Amos was sued by a man who crashed his car because he was distracted by a billboard advertising her new album.  The billboard was a photo of her breastfeeding a piglet.  


STU
"Where is Matthew Lillard now?"  You scream, throwing things around your room, falling to your knees and raising clenched fists to the heavens, "WHY HAS LILLARD FORSAKEN US?"

Actually he hasn't so you can just chill out.  He recently played Daniel Frye, the drugged up reporter on the US remake of that hit Danish-Swedish series The Bridge (although that did just get cancelled - boo).  He is also the voice of Shaggy in the animated version of Scooby-Doo, a character he also played in the live action film.  Shaggy is ideal casting for him, since during the '90s he excelled in playing goofy characters in a long line of teen films.  Sometimes sadistic violent ones as in Scream and The Curve, sometimes hilarious ones as in She's All That, Summer Catch and Hackers.  I imagine his agent often used the phrase, "A young Jim Carrey" to describe his manic energy that could be twisted into full on crazy.  

In Scream we're introduced to his Stu Macher as the boyfriend of Sidney's best friend Tatum.  He's an insensitive dope.  He's popular and rich, but he's a bit of an oddball.  He's also a bit of a dick.  You can tell that by the shiny evening jacket he wears to his own party.


Also because he's the WACKSTER side-kick to Billy's brooding serious leading man, he is a fan of patterned shirts and jewellery.  


Look at him in the same shirt below, being all crazy Stu, picking up his girlfriend and driving her nuts with his wackiness. 




We never really know why Stu gets involved with psycho Billy's antics - is he really, really, REALLY bored?  Is he just that impressionable?  I think we're supposed to simply accept that it's peer pressure that causes him to follow Billy down the garden path and into the bedroom of Sidney's mom, where he brutally murders her.  I dunno.  Peer pressure made me do some dumb things on nights out but they never had a body count.  Maybe he just adored Billy? 



Stu's song would have to be 'Youth Of America' by Birdbrain, because he's a bit of a bird brain himself.  If you're not familiar with the track it's classic 90s alt rock, the lyrics are all about how teenagers in America are in loads of trouble and we should get on our knees and pray for them.  Sadly this is the only song that seems to be readily available for Birdbrain fans, a fact which someone on their Wikipedia page is quite bitter about, "The underrated band is only known for 'Youth of America'. When it was heard during the party in Scream people loved but didn't care to remember."  GOD GUYS WHY DIDN'T YOU CARE TO REMEMBER?!

This is Stu's isolated mansion, I love how gothic it is.  Apparently there was a rumour on set that the previous owners of the house had died inside shortly before filming. Oh my glob. 



TATUM RILEY

Tatum is my bae.  I love her so much.  She's funny and gorgeous and a pretty great friend to Sydney before, well, you know.   Ahem, the cat flap incident.  She's played by the always brilliant Rose McGowan, who dyed her normally black hair blonde so she wasn't follically competing with Neve Campbell.  That seems very considerate to me.  

My favourite outfit of Tatum's is the one below.  It's '90s teen movie aspirational dressing.  Echoes of Cher Horowitz and Corey Mason.  I love the white boots, the kilt (of course) and the lemon roll neck.  


Look at this highly impractical denim jacket she wears.  It's mega cropped, the sleeves are way too short, and that low cut neckline is good for absolutely nothing.  


This outfit below though, oh my good lord.  I enjoy how she accessorises her cropped silver football tee, her red bootcut jeans with the white stripe and her zebra print bag with a lollipop and braids.  Watch out guys, Lolita's trying out for the NFL again. 



By the way, in Nightmare On Elm Street Johnny Depp also wore a number 10 jersey.  Can we get a film buff round of applause for Kevin Williamson please?  

In this scene below when the BFF's are sitting on the ridiculously massive porch of Tatum's gigantic house, we've just heard 'Schools Out' by Alice Cooper.  That anthem of non-conformity and scholastic rebellion was released in 1972, and parents, teachers, psychologists and principles were so shocked by it many demanded radio stations should never be allowed to play it.  Ever.  Still, it went to number 1 in several countries, so those Cooper-haters must have been freaking out.  I wonder how they felt when Staples used it in a commercial in 2004, with Cooper himself wandering up and down the aisles buying stationery.   Yeah!  Rebellion!



Tatum's last amazing outfit can be seen below.  She stuck with the roll neck and boots, but put on her psychadelic 70's skirt.  It's a pretty sweet party outfit.  Just perfect for hanging out, drinking some beers, and dying in a horrible, gruesome way. 





GAIL WEATHERS

Yes Gail!
I wish we got to see more of Gail's clothes because I feel like she definitely owns a lot more acid-hued skirt suits.  Her wardrobe is like Ally McBeal on, err, acid.  Look at that skirt!  The buttons are so unneccessary, I love it!


Also please take the time to admire her little thin fringe bits, and chunky blonde highlights. 


I remember when I saw this film for the first time I couldn't believe this was Monica Gellar being so ruthless, mean and full of the bad swears.  I was so into it!  I was also into this jacket with it's huge white buttons and white stitching.  

Um, also, isn't that a Rachel cut?!


She has to have some leopard print, even if it's only on a hair accessory.  Her character IS leopard print.  She is a prowling, vicious cat, and my god she's gorgeous. 


This leather jacket below though is the ugliest freaking thing I've ever seen.  I don't understand what happened Gail.  What would you call that shade of shiny pleather?  Turd?  Old mouldy caramel?



Whatever, I still love her, which is why the song in the film that best goes with Gail is 'Drop Dead Gorgeous' by Republica.  I always loved the lead singer of that band, Saffron AKA Samantha Sprackling (stage names seem to have been way more of a "thing" in the '90s).  She had, and I think still has, chunky red highlights in her hair.  Yet another Gail connection. 

I want to write about Dewey's clothes, but it was pretty much always a police uniform.  Still, he did look great in it.  


Despite playing a character supposedly 7 years older than the high schoolers, David Arquette was actually younger than Skeet Ulrich, Matthew Lillard and Jamie Kennedy.  He gets the song 'First Cool Hive' by Moby as his theme because Arquette is so sweet and chill, and I imagine this was the kind of music he used to seduce Courtney Cox after filming.  Look at them on set, falling in love. 


GHOSTFACE

Ghostface's look is very classic, very simple.  Almost Parisian in his use of black and draping fabrics than flatter all forms.  

He keeps his face matte with strong definition on the eyes and lips, and feels naked without his trademark shiny knife and black gloves. 





Just a great, iconic look. 

His getting ready to go out song is 'Whisper To A Scream' by Soho, yet another much missed English band, made up of sisters Jacqui and Pauline Cuff and their pal Timothy London (who is sadly not releated to the acting brothers Jeremy and Jason London, stars of Party Of Five, 7th Heaven and Dazed and Confused.  

WTAS is a gorgeous track with a sweet beat, which Ghostface would no doubt put on in the car as he's driving too and from those really big secluded mansions after yet another crazy night out.