Archive for June, 2012
(I thought very long and hard about writing this down but I thought that is actually what I owe you – my dear readers. Honesty at every given moment. After I have read the letter last Monday my first thought was just one of pure distraction, my second of pure disappointment and my third one of pure concentration on thinking whether to write my heart and thoughts down or pretend that none of this has happened not allowing you to look inside the mind of a failing Mr.StrictlyIntimate. I decided to go with the first one – not just to show you the side of an imperfect me but also to give me a chance to let you take a quick look behind the pseudo-perfect facade I have created in order to be what I wanted to be. Always. Perfect. Always. I am not. And in the end I will have to admit that I might never be. Nonetheless, this fact will never stop me from striving for perfection. Because that is what keeps us going and makes us develop ourselves further to a person of grace and elegance and attitude. But, before I go on let me start at the beginning.)
I was always the boy who was laughed at for having dreams and aiming (mostly) for goals too high to reach. Well, at least by the non-dreaming and non-imaginative mind. I always tried to laugh people’s laughter away to give myself the chance to truly believe in myself. And I did. At least until recent events took place. This is my version of events.
British Vogue annually searches for a writing talent. Someone who combines journalistic as well as classic narrative talent in writing. I tried to participate last year but I couldn’t get myself to write a single sentence. I was blocked because I was afraid to lose. This year I took my shot because it seemed to be the last opportunity to be a part of a competition like that for one can’t enter when having reached the age of 25. So it practically was my last chance.
To participate in this competition one had to write and send in three types of texts. The first one had to be an essay about a memory that resolutes deeply; the second a piece on a current trend or a designer and the third a polemic.
There have been a few moments of doubting and not knowing what to exactly write about because I wasn’t sure how much honesty about myself and the ways of growing up in the family I was born into was appropriate. Until I have reached the point of deciding to write plainly honest about EVERYTHING. My stepfather, the way he treated me and the way it affected me towards finding myself perfectly sheltered in a world others often declare as being shallow and superficial – the fashion world.
So here I sit with a dream as shattered as Madonna’s credibility. The pain of losing and missing such an opportunity is heavy on my heart. At first I couldn’t breathe. Then I felt numb. And now I have reached a point where I have to ask myself whether to stop aiming for such a goal or quitting. But in the end I know the answer already, don’t I?
I can’t just quit. I am not a quitter. I am a fighter. And even if people may laugh even harder now they know about my failing I will walk with my head held high and my dreams up in the sky taking chance after chance. One day I’ll be where I want to be. And you will see me. And then you might stop to laugh or you might find another reason to laugh at me or look at me weirdly. But that is perfectly fine with me because I will go on. I will keep on writing my own lines, writing my life the way I want it to be. This life is my own book and I make the rules.
This song is a promise to the Editors of Vogue and everyone who read the text (or hasn’t) – YOU HAVEN’T SEEN THE LAST OF ME!
Last Night. 12.30 am. Honest thoughts of a mind that sometimes doubts. And is afraid. And can’t always keep composure.
It is half past midnight. I should sleep but I simply can’t. I am listening to Barbra Streisand’s song ‘They Way We Were’ from the same titled movie. I am afraid. Paralyzed with anxiety. I think I can’t handle it. I doubt. Myself and the whole project of moving out. I feel like a big black hole opened its gates beneath me trying to suck me into its nothingness.
Existential anxieties at the age of 25. Now that sounds great in applications. I am 25, single, with a job that might be secure but that can’t fulfill me for the next 25 years and an apartment that is not even half furnished but already cost me fortune that I don’t have anymore. Cash almost ran out and I wonder how I can make it through the next crucial months of showing everyone around me, all the doubters and haters, including me, that I CAN do it? All by myself? How can I prove myself right in front of everyone’s critical and opinionated eye, if I can’t even convince myself right now that I can make it through this stage of anxiety without the provisory Xanax every now and then?
Is this a temporary phase of thinking or will it continue once I am really all by myself? What can I do to get past it? To cross the line of self doubting before I vanish completely in the procedure of it? Where has the self conscious, independent and insufferable me gone? Where is the guy who promised himself to do it all by himself? Where the hell has he gone?
I doubt and I wish I could stop it. I hate doubting. I hate doubting myself.
Does doubting oneself automatically signify once lack of love for oneself? Am I right at the beginning of when I started to work on myself and abilities to love myself for who I am rather than who I can’t be? Where does it stop, this way of thinking? Where can I find myself again? Where has my courage gone?
Is this the point where I look into the mirror admitting myself that I’ve become the failure I’d never wanted to be? Where do I go from here? Where do I go? Where?
Friday, June 8th
I used to think that once I have an inspiring thought everything will just start from there like a bomb – bamm you’ve got the couch them bamm you’ve got the bookshelves and bamm the dining area finishes itself completely. Well, it is not like that. Not at all. But, to be honest – I kind of enjoy it. The whole process of visiting furniture stores checking for a great sofa and matching fauteuils; or a bed where you feel safe and sound; or an open wardrobe to complement your clothes and bags and shoes.
All the looking at stuff and matching of colors and flipping through decor magazines is a part of a process that helps me to get to know myself better and to work on the relationship with myself for I decorate the environment I am building for myself. The person I’ll have to be in a relationship in until the end. Well, sure, if one commits suicide this isn’t that much of a lifetime but since I am not planning on jumping out of a window or in front of a bus I am quite positive that I will live a long life. So you will not get rid of me and my intellectual outpourings.
Saturday, June 9th
I am sitting in my new Apartment. On the floor waiting for a part of my furniture to arrive. I am tired as fuck and I should mention that it is 6.00 am and that I am awake since 5.20 am. My MacBook is on and I am watching Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows [Part I]. Eventually I must have been fallen asleep during the first half an hour being woken up by a heavy doorbell ringing. I gasp and know – it is here. Thank God, it is here and I can start building it up (by myself).
At 10.30 am I am getting thirsty (but I already built up one and a half IKEA armchairs. All by myself. Fantastic isn’t it?) so I go down to the bakery picking up a sandwich and some water.
10.45 am what the fuck?! I can’t get inside my apartment because the door lock broke. So I call the locksmith. 140 fucking Euros for 5 minutes of his time. Well what a great start into the day. Nonetheless, I am still cheered up by the fact that the walls I am standing in are really mine. My own four walls of blissful fashionability. This will be there place where people come to feel great about themselves. This is going to be the place where I can feel great about myself.
At 11.05 am and 12.15 pm Tomasz and B show up to help me build up the other stuff. So after T and I have finished the Sofa B arrives to help us with the rest of the stuff. Being occupied with the open closet I am building for myself. Like I am my own Mr. Big. After some time thinking I have decided that this Carrie Bradshaw addicted guy better get himself a great closet without waiting for the perfect man to show up building him one. And in the end, I stand in front of the amazing closet knowing that there are no perfect men out there (and I am definitely one of them) but there most certainly is THE perfect wardrobe. And I have it now.
Sunday, June 10th
This is kind of a relaxing Sunday. I haven’t had a day like this in a long time. Full of writing; flipping through the pages of ELLE, ELLE Decoration and VOGUE; watching ‘Sex and the City’ and packing my books, magazines and fashion Look Books into hundreds of boxes. Right now I have 8 boxes so far. In there? All my issues of VOGUE. Well, not all of them to be honest. There are still a lot more to pack. And then there comes the issues of ELLE and Harpers Bazaar and so on. I am afraid I will never get finished with it.
Right now here I sit in front of my MacBook with the windows open, drinking tea and watching the second season of ‘Sex and the City’ (right now: Season 2; Episode 9: Old Dogs, New Dicks) while thinking about the myths of love and relationships and about the fact that there is something true to what Miranda Hobbes said in an episode of that season earlier on, ‘All we talk about anymore is Big or balls or small dicks. How does it happen that four smart women have nothing to talk about but boyfriends? It’s like seventh grade but with bank accounts. What about us? What we think, we feel, we know, Christ!’
I have to agree. (Well, except for the ‘Christ!’ thing – I would have changed that with ‘Gucci!’ or ‘Burberry!’) At some days I really wonder how every relevant topic of discussion always seems to end up with talking about guys. I am fed up with this topic. Maybe it is because I feel like being at a change now that I am moving on with my life by moving out and by being independent and all by myself for the very first time in my life. This is a change I do not want to share with a boyfriend because it is the first thing I have to myself in years.
And I most certainly will cherish that and enjoy it. The whole ride – with all its ups and downs. It doesn’t mean I am lonely just because I am alone. And, to be honest, I am not alone. I am single. Single and Fabulous! (- Exclamation Point!)
So, here’s the truth: I arrived with low expectations (because I was very disappointed of the annual fashion show of the University for artistic and industrial design Linz in cooperation with the Fashion Institute of Vienna last year) and the will to take pot luck. And I did. Honestly, I wasn’t just surprised by the high set standard of the first and second year of students who started the show… but let me get to make my point by starting at the beginning.
Okay, no. Not the right place, not the right time. This post will not be about me for a change but about the students of the University for artistic and industrial design Linz in cooperation with the Fashion Institute of Vienna.
Date: June 5th, 2012
Time: 8.30 pm
Location: Wiener Tramwaymuseum; A-1030 Vienna; Erdbergstraße 109 – Entrance Ludwig Koesslerplatz
A beautiful building. Old brick. An ancient character. As I enter the hall and take my front row seat I feel a little bit tense. Not knowing what will come but being aware of the fact that these days are crucial. The cooperation between the University of Linz and the fashion institute of Vienna has been, well let’s say broken. That’s why momentary and former students created ‘Hetzendorf brennt’ a campaign to unite all their powers to save the cooperation as well as the possibility of studying fashion design in the halls of Hetzendorf Castle. Crucial. In Austria there is not ONE opportunity to get a bachelor’s degree in fashion design that combines artistic as well as marketing skills. There is no course on any of our Universities available that unites the technical fashion education (sewing, shoe making, millinery and knitting) with knowledge of the historical backgrounds on the development of fashion, design and the arts as well as a fundamental education in Marketing, Public Relations and Languages. On top of that the training of the skills of art – drawing; drafting; using computer programs like Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign; getting to know a variety of art techniques finding the one that suits you and your character the most. Can you tell me why one would shut down such an opportunity for young creatives who long for a fundamental education in fashion?
So – the show started with moderations and introductions. And then it came – BAMM! The first and the second year of the bachelor’s course made quite an entrance. They set a very high standard and left a very clear message: ‘This is us. Come take a look! This is what we can do.’
I see a lot of inspirations apart from Designers like Coco Chanel, Alexander McQueen, Fendi and Badgley Mischka but also other images like calm seas; gold ducats; woods and freedom. After The first and second bachelor year three foreign students of the Bunka Fashion College Japan were invited to present their fabulous collections. Collections that were rich of asian influences as well as open for ethnicities and shapes and texture mixes and rich in colors!
There was a pause and I could see the people shifting in their seats. I knew, they were related to those students who would celebrate their last show that night for they would then concentrate on their bachelor theses and put all their efforts into their final presentation to get their bachelor degrees. That night truly was all about them and their hard work:
Alice Jieun Kim – Back to Basics
Alice Frey – That, which is worn
Claudia Stanek – Tracing
Daria Vdovitchenko – Makro
Elvira Greblic – giving a matter its structure
Inga Nemirovskaia – Sojourner
Isabel Helf – construction site
Katharina Perzl – Tomoko
Katharina Triltsch – De/Formation
Kathi Zanon – Camera scura
Katrin Wallner – Nebula
Laura Haberkorn – Blue Star
Natalie Ofenböck – Skizzen
Leonie-Rachel Soyel – yolculuktan izler
Louise Witt-Dörring – workwearstyles.
Lubov Liebendoerfer – From Russia with love
Maximilian Rittler – Roger
Pia Bauernberger – Stack of clothes
Simone-Kathrin Sassmann – Steady F//M
Sophie Skach – Phileas Fogg, the old vagabond.
Teresa Toth – The Room Collection
Cudos! to the students of the last year – not just for wonderful collections but also for managing all that AND finishing the year. I know how hard that is but you know what guys? Take a look into the mirror because you almost made it. Yeah, you almost made it and the world is ready for you to conquer her!
P.S.: All photos courtesy of Teresa Hammerl of Colazione a Roma || Colazione a Venezia.
Another Post on the Show by a dear colleague: Dani Magdup from royalpinkgoth- alternative fashion in vienna.