It has been almost 15 weeks since I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. She has consumed ALL of my days and nights as expected – especially since I am breastfeeding. At first, everything was so hard for me to deal with. I was overwhelmed with all the responsibilities of taking care of a newborn – I didn’t expect it to be this hard to be honest. But as time passes by and my babe and I get to know each other, it is getting to be so much more fun. A lot of internet moms I follow get back to posting and updating at week 3. I have respect for those ladies. I wish I had that kind of schedule to be able to post as often. But as spring comes and her sleeping and play time schedule sets in I will be able to post as often. But most importantly I would like to do more craft things to share and also go out into the city to show my daughter this beautiful city she was born in – me in stilettos, she in her Starchild’s :)
Never in my wildest of dreams would I have thought that I would actually find a real, true, designer brand bargain in an Istanbul outlet center (Optimum), EVER! It was quite a huge surprise for me to find these babies. The CHLOE Spring 2008 Patent Leather Wedge Ski Boots!!! Sigh! In size 40. For only 285 Turkish Liras - which is about $200 US! Yep, you saw it right! Only $200. Even more sighs!
To make you understand how good this deal is, I am going to make you feel like a Turkish person by demonstrating a thought – on average you can buy a new pair boots for about 350 TLs in season. That’s how cheap the Chloe’s are (were)! I also would like to list the challenges involved in finding these babies in neat bullet points for your easy reading pleasure.
1 – This is Istanbul. Supposedly 18 million people live here. Assuming 1% of all the 18 million covet designer brands in the few true outlet stores I frequent, that makes (taking out the calculator…calculating…,yep, yep) 180 thousanddd people I have to compete with for those bargains…
2 – This is Istanbul. Any designer brand you attempte to buy at places like Beymen and Vakko, you pay double EU or US prices. Just cuz we are rich like that (you would think)…
3 – This is Istanbul…
Yep, i didn’t get them (yet)! Mainly because I am jobless pregnant lady who has swollen feet whose husband put her on a shoe embargo (or else). I have no clue if these babies would fit my feet after the birth. My feet actually looked quite funny when I put them on. They fit but the swollen part were bursting out in between the bands. I did not take a picture to save you and me some embarrassment. :P
It has been over 12 hours since I set my eyes on them and had to abandon them. I still can’t get the thought out of my mind. Arghhh!
Wow. Remember that project I gave up? The one that made me decide to start Istanbul on Stilettos? It has been two whole freaking years!!! since I went back to the project and still….a failure. I think sometimes you have to ACCEPT your failures. What happened in two years? I got married, I quit my job, I got preggers (3 more weeks!). But my project is still a failure, FA-I-LU-RE! Today, I accept my failure. Wheeew! What a relieeef!
I decided since the baby is on the way and I am practically a full time you-know-what (it rhymes with wouse hife, argggh) I might as well accept this to be a hobby. Yes, a hobby. Nothing wrong with that now is there? No pressesures about hits, and adsense, and seo, and duplicate meta tags! Wohoooo!!!! I am freee!!! I want to go back to my original idea of discovering the city (with the baby, now), myself, and my style. Those things were my priorities that fell out of sight. I have no clue, how, when, where…etc. I have to admit…I just don’t want to give up on the whole idea completely. I mean, the effort that I put into it….5 years in the making…I want someone to adopt my dream and run with it! I am willing to contribute. I have a few things in the works to make sure that it is adopted by someone caring :)
During my nesting preps for the baby, I came to this conclusion. But, I guess my turning point was when Garance Dore came to Istanbul and captured it from a perspective I wish I could’ve captured as a native. I decided also to keep this blog strictly English. Mainly because that is how my inner voice works – even after 2 years in this city. I have been horrible at writing Turkish content for the portal. It would stress the bejesus out of me. Maybe, I can be the English voice of Turkish style and culture….Oh, there I go again, setting up expectations…Stop, drop, and just be :)
Friday, I spent the whole day hanging out with my friend, the ever so eccentric Alp. Our original plan was to play with my camera and go to the bazaar ( I tell you, I am absolutely addicted). But we ended up spending most of the day shopping on Bagdat Street. I have to admit, this was the first time I have spent such a long time shopping with a guy and not feeling like I was boring him to death. We were both productive in terms of shopping. Eventhough we were at a very “style savvy” part of the city, Alp got a lot of looks due to his eccentric style. The coolest part of the day was when after following us for a few blocks, a homeless kid came by and asked him, “Bro, why are you dressed like that?”. İstanbul may not be ready for Alp, but Alp is ready for İstanbul. :D
click on image for bigger image//büyük resim için üstüne tıklayın
Cuma günümün çoğunu egzantrik stil ikonu arkadaşım Alp ile geçirdim. Orijinal planımızda biraz fotoğraf çekip Cadde´de yürümek vardı ama caddenin alışverişi bize biraz daha cazip geldi. Bostancı´da başlayan turumuz Kadıköy Cuma Pazarında (kumaş pazarı tabiki) bitti. Bir erkeğin canını sıkmadan bu kadar uzun alışveriş yaptığımı hatırlamıyorum bile. Alışveriş açısından bayağı verimli bir gün olduğu halde azıcıkta olsa Cuma pazarının tamamını gezememek biraz içimizde ukte oldu. Her ne kadar İstanbul´un en nezih ve şık yerlerinde gezmiş olsakta, Alp´ın bana göre gayette normal olan kıyafeti çoğu kişinin dikkatini çekti. Bir noktada kimsesiz çocuğun teki, “Abi, sen niye öyle giyindin?” diye soru sormak ihtiyacını bile duydu. Üzülerek gözlemlediğim nokta, malesef İstanbul Alp´e hazır değil ama Alp İstanbul´a çoktan hazır! :D
I have read in the recent aforementioned Trendsetter magazine about this really cool event called Bridges to Fashion. The purpose of the event is to “bridge” the world of fashion between Rotterdam and Istanbul and introduce each other’s fashion culture to one another. Nifty concept. The Netherlands end of the show has been completed recently; however, the Turkey end has not – due to a need for a sponsor. Sad. Really. Anyway, the Turkish designers who have participated in the event are the usual – Arzu Kaprol, Bahar Korcan, Dilek Hanif, Filiz Akcakal, Gamze Saracoglu, Hatice Gokce, Ozlem Suer, Selim Baklaci, Sibel Aygun, and Umit Onal. I can’t wait for someone to sponsor this event! (ps…this makes me want to study all these designers for I don’t know much about Turkish designers)
Bridges to Fashion denilen bir festivalın varlığını, Trendsetter´ın bu ayki baskısından öğrendim. Tabi merak edip hemen sitelerine bir göz attım ve araştırdım. Bu olayın espirisi iki şehirin birbiriyle sanatsal kaynaşması için moda konulu bir proje. Rotterdam kolu başarıyla Arzu Kaprol, Bahar Korcan, Dilek Hanif, Filiz Akcakal, Gamze Saracoglu, Hatice Gokce, Ozlem Suer, Selim Baklaci, Sibel Aygun, and Umit Onal gibi Türk tasarımcılarında katılımıyla tamamlanmış. Ancak sponsor bulanamadığı için İstanbul kolu henüz olmamış. Biraz üzücü tabiki ama en yakın zamanda sponsor bulmaları dileğiyle. Bu arada Türk tasarımcıların böyle bir listesini görünce araştırmam gerektiğini düşündüm hemen.
I have a problem with tights in general (as in obsession). I also have this love for Nil Karaibrahimgil´s style. When I saw the combination of these two interests of mine in this commercial, I was sold on the purple gradient tights. I HAD to have them! I decided to pay a visit to Penti´s site and found out that I can order these babies online. I am superhyped and can´t wait to recieve them. Before I went to the bazaar, I went into a store to buy regular black tights. They also happened to be Penti brand. I have already worn them and I was quite pleased with the quality. Also I thought it was interesting that they rate opaqueness of the tights – less to more sheer. Ofcourse, after I went through the whole site (which still needs improvement on the navigation end), I decided to order the wicked tights below in addition. I will try to do an outfit post when they arrive.
Bu reklamı gördüğüm andan beri morlu gradyanlı çorapları kafaya takmış durumdayım. Bugün bu reklamı tekrar görünce hemen Penti´nin websitesine girip bakayım dedim. Ve girer girmez bu çorapları siteden sipariş ettim. Bir an önce elime geçmesini ve kıyafet kombinleri deneme hayallarini kuruyorum! Onun dışında reklamda olan ve Nil Karaibrahimgil´in çorap listesindeki diğer çılgın çorapları ısmarlamaya karar verdim – severim hatunu. Bunların kısaları bende olsada sanırım kışın bu külotlu çorap tarzında olanlar daha çok işe yarayacak. Gerçi American Apparel´dan aldığım buna benzer çoraplarda var (çorap konusuda biraz obsesifimdir) ama nede olsa yurdum malııı…Neyse, Penti´nin kalitesi zaten süper, ama sitenin üzerine biraz daha çalışılması gerekiyor.
Image by eda alpman via Flickr
One thing I miss about living in the U.S, is sitting at Border’s bookstore, sipping coffee, and looking at all the fashion magazines at my hearts content. Since looking-at-magazines-for-free ideal does not work too well in the Turkish culture (taking things for granted issue), I had a chance to peruse the Turkish magazine stands at D&R and purchase a few. There are the Turkish versions of Elle, In Style, Cosmo, etc. But I really wanted to look at Turkish based magazines. I happened to find only two so far.
First one is a magazine called Trendsetter. I have read this magazine several times before. I find it to improve each and every issue. The magazine covers everything from design to fashion to literature. It is quite extensive with amazing editorials and graphic design. I have actually assisted (and sorta modeled for) one of the guest photographers before – but more on that later. Here is a great set of editorials from a Turkish photographer named Eda Alpman I found on Flickr.
The second one is called 2de1. It is more fashion based and as expensive as foreign magazines but the quality is exceptional. I would say the mood of the magazine a little bit more avantgarde than your typical fashion magazines. But I think this is what keeps the magazine going. I recommend it for the great shoots and variety.
On another note, as I was walking on Bagdat Street, I was gleeful to find my favorite magazine People Style on the news stand. It was one of the few magazines that I was sure I was going to miss. It is great feeling to know that I can walk over a few blocks and grab it when I need it!
Amerika yaşarken en büyük zevkleridmen biri D&R tarzı olan Borders´a gidip kahve eşliğinde dünyanın her bir yerinden gelen moda magazinlerini tırtıklamak olurdu. Ancak o tarz birşeyi burada yapma imkanı olmadığından mecburen bir kaç tane magazin alıp evde kurcaladım. Tipik yabancı yapımların türkçeleştirilmiş versyonları yerine, halis mulis Türk moda magazinlerini merak ettim ve iki tane buldum. Bunlardan biri Trendsetter diğeri ise 2´de 1. Her ikisi başka tarz olsada gayet başarılı buldum. Trendsetter´ı önceden almışlığım var. Ama her sayıda sanki daha da iyileşiyorlar. Muhteşem editöryelleri Vogue editöryellerini aratacağını pekte sanmıyorum açıkcası. Ayrıca grafik tasarımları ve edebiyata ayırdığı bölümde moda magazininden daha da fazla birşey olduğunu ıspatlıyor. 2de1 ise biraz daha farklı ve avantgard´ımsı bir havası var. Fiyatı bayağı yüksek olduğu halde insan eline alınca kaliteli sayfalarından gayet memnun kalıyor. Daha çok inceleyemedim ama arşivlik olacağı kesin.
Bu arada orada en çok okuduğum (daha doğrusu baktığım) magazin olan People Style´ı Bağdat Caddesinde bir gazeticide gördüm. İnanılmaz sevindim :) Benim en büyük ilham kaynaklarımdan bir tanesi bu magazin çünkü.