I don’t want to be your hero…

There are some songs that become instant classics, and this is one of them. I heard this for the first time last night, and I already can’t get it out of my head. Right now, we’re surrounded by Lego, building cities and magical creatures, and ignoring the fact that the remains of breakfast are still on the table, uncleared. The kids are in their PJs, I’m pottering about, drinking coffee and writing, and we’re all singing along to this, which is from the soundtrack to Boyhood. I hope that when we play this song in the future, we remember these long summer holiday mornings, which are not always fraught and sweaty, but sometimes peaceful and sweet.

Happy summer holidays!



The art of telling people they’re ACE.

Do you have friends who are brilliant?

Do you tell them they are brilliant?

I don’t tell mine, but I should. I’ve got friends who are completely, show-stoppingly, freaking awesome, not that I’d ever tell them that. So recently I came over all un-British and decided to embark on a campaign of telling people who are ace that I think they are ace. I have done this in the past, but usually after a glass or 4 of wine, which dilutes the sincerity somewhat.

I found myself increasingly involved in conversations where a group of us would mutter in hushed tones that so-and-so was amazing, or that something they were doing was incredible, and do you know what – they just didn’t know how utterly amazing they are.

Funny that – seeing as no one was going to tell them.

Because we’re very good – as a nation of polite and slightly stand-offish people – of indulging in glowing references of our friends, but then in their actual company, just wussing out and talking about what’s going down on Twitter (that might just be my conversations, come to think of it.)

But lately, I have come to the conclusion that there are people who probably don’t know how great I think they are, and hell – I’m just going to tell them. Whether they like it or not.

It’s the drunken ‘I LOVE YOU man!! – I really love you, I DEFINITELY love you!’ outpourings of emotion for people who have given up drinking too much too often.

There is probably a delicate art of telling someone you think they’re amazing, without causing them to shrivel with embarrassment or suffer an attack of pomposity, but frankly, who has the time to learn a whole new art just because your friend just so happens to be particularly ace ? Not me.

Prepare yourselves, friends.


Who made your pants?

A clever friend of mine once remarked ‘shopping is political’. And it is.
She also pointed me in the direction of something that has rapidly come to be one of my favourite things.

It’s called the Year of Pants.

And it works like this. You subscribe, then each month, you receive a pair of pants through the post (gift-wrapped in a very pleasing manner.) They are selected for you, and they are THE MOST BEAUTIFUL PANTS.
sea shell pants

But the fact that the pants are so beautiful is not even the most remarkable thing about these pants. These pants are by WhoMadeYourPants?

They are made in a small factory in Southampton by women who are trained in the intricate art of lingerie production. Many of the women who work there are immigrants from places like Somalia and Afghanistan, all of them have had difficult experiences; all of them want to learn new skills and work.

This is what Who Made Your Pants is all about:

“We think that every day should be a good pants day, and that there should be a little bit of gorgeous under everyone’s clothes, something just for them. So we buy fabrics that have been sold on by big underwear companies at the end of season, stop them ending up as waste and turn them into gorgeous new pants that have a great start in life.”

What an astonishingly simple, wonderful idea.

(It’s also, on a practical level, a brilliant way of refreshing your underwear drawer, if like me, you’re getting bored of worn-out M&S multipack offerings.) Each pair of perfectly formed knickers that you buy comes with a little label telling you exactly who made your pants. So you really DO know exactly who made your pants.

By purchasing one pair of pants, you empower women, support sustainable manufacturing and contribute to the revivial of British manufacturing, all at the same time. AND you get a stunningly beautiful pair of pants.

See? Shopping is political.



If you want to read more about WMYP, or the way that they are revolutionizing the way that underwear is sold to women, then you could read the interview with Becky, founder of WMYP on The Debrief.