Monday, 28 February 2011


By Constance Briscoe

The heart-wrenching true story of how a loveless childhood led to her achievement of being one of the first black women to sit as a Judge in the UK.

If your looking for an inspiring, truthful and gripping book to lead your spring read, then Constance Briscoe is a definite read. Born in the 1960s, see how she survives her terrible start with an abusive mother, stepfather and 10 siblings.

It all began when Constance came home and handed her Mother her school photograph, and she replied “Lord, sweet Lord how come she so ugly, Ugly. Ugly.” The mental and physical abuse followed as she fended for herself, stood up to her pain and fought for her own independence.

Her honesty, and dramatic account of her terrible childhood is typical of any true-life story. Endless abuse physically and emotionally, with her worn out energy that inspiringly eventually leads her to a better life.

Throughout her life, Constance is brought up watching her Mother treat and love her children, but purposely leaving her in the corner. Seeing how she can treat her siblings differently is the most upsetting of all.

Back in 2008, Constance herself was being sued by her own Mother for ‘fabricating’ and creating a book of ‘nonsence’. The publisher stood by Constance throughout the trail and with her on her win back in December 2008. They made a statement that "Sadly, as we know from the news over the past few weeks, child abuse is all too common and nothing and no one should ever stand in the way of the truth."

Constance tells the Guardian about her determination; "I have a letter my mother wrote to a solicitor in which she says her biggest regret in life was that I didn't die at birth," she says. "No, I have no regrets about writing the book."

The Mail on Sunday describes Constance’s book as “An astonishing true story of hope over adversity”.

An overwhelming read that must be so, and enjoyed.

(£6.99, Hodder & Stoughton)

by Harriet Edgar

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

London Fashion Week

A/W 2011 has landed in full force with its recycled and edgy tradition. Over the weekend, such shows from Topshop’s ‘Unique’, Mulberry, Matthew Williamson, Louise Gray, Vivienne Westwood, PPQ, Temperley and many more have graced the newly appointed location for the bi-annual fashion event with their coverted new designs.

As ever, it wasn’t just the designers fashion that were captured, quoted or dare I say tweeted, the celebrities that took to the front row of the shows, sometimes turned more heads.

Front row veterans such as Anna Wintour, Alexandra Shulman, Kate Moss and Philip Green, paved their way to the upcoming trendsetting starlets of today such as Emma Watson, Olivia Palermo, Fearne Cotton and Nicola Roberts.

Their flaunting style was ever short of shy, as they boldly wore the season’s stone and brown hues, ankle & middy length skirts, quirky accessories, satin floaty materials, and an eye watering amount of bright colours and patterns.

The trends of today have well and truly brought back memories and tastes of past decades. Patterns and cuts of materials hark back to the 70s, whilst the colours and stitch remind us only of the post war period, daring to challenge their beige hues for the outright bold.

No fashion week is the same without pining over the new collections, imagining your bank balance didn’t omit to the depressing potential of buying second hand clobber, and convincing yourself that your VIP invite to the latest shows ‘must have got lost in the post’.

This time around there is a definite glee of excitement, as we can already see the many garments on show that are waiting to be reborn in the wardrobe. Such items as your leather jacket, floral pieces, belted macs, military parkas, coral summer hues, maxi dresses, autumn browns and clogs are all making their re-appearance to A/W.

Simply adjusting your designs to fit the new trends will take little effort, and part of the fun is thinking of new ways to invent the clothes you have. For example, simply take your maxi dress, hitch up at the waist and fasten with a skinny (or woven) belt that will instantly take the length up to the ‘middy’ size of the season.

Layering as ever is a staple for A/W, so simply teaming your Camel Coat with the middy length skirt is the easiest way to bring last year to 2011.

By far the best place I have found to get up to date information of this week in London is the online fashion bible itself; Their blog is also brilliant for snippets of the latest gossip, buys, shows and celebrity appearances.

Thursday, 17 February 2011


After the fun of Zoo, I’m carrying on the trend and doing 2 weeks here at FHM! Literally a stones throw away but great fun as I already feel at home here, knowing the routine and area of Covent Garden well.

Similar duties include dealing with post, answering the phone and emails.

A big part is researching for the writers, looking for news stories and doing any tasks for them that helps things go smoothly for them.

A secret favourite task is going round Grazia, Heat, Closer and More, I just love seeing all the production team working away and having a chat with them.

Also making sure a leavers party on Friday goes smoothly so I have to pick up a few things!

Today and tomorrow I’m in the place of the Editor’s Assistant, so anything she deals with I have to answer to my best ability!

A little secret also is that I may be coming back to help in the Summer, but I don’t want to temp fate yet!

Overall it’s a bit surreal, I just wish I could come here after Uni and apply for all the jobs advertised in the Lobby.

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Mini Eggs

So as ever January brought along the cold, the Christmas weight, the leftover food to eat, to scrounge every bag you own in hope to find some money, the self loathing of your inept ability to make new year resolutions and did I mention becoming fat?

Probably the most exciting thing to happen in January for me, is mini eggs to hit the shelf. Thanks to the shopping madness that brings out festive food whilst interrupting another current festival.

After scoffing enough mini eggs to put a Cadbury Battery Farm out of business, I find my best resolution which I do not subconsciously realise I'm doing, is just ponder over the past year, and do the whole "remember doing this today last year", seeing how different peoples lives change, realise mistakes, remember fun moments or appreciate the new friends in your life, or the ones you've lost.

This is where Facebook comes in real handy to illustrate my daydreaming, as I look back over the pictures taken and remember THAT time, and have a giggle over the contrasts... at this point in time I realise I have yet again eaten another bag of mini eggs effortlessly.

Probably the most exciting thing to happen this year for me is to picture where I'm going to be in the next, probably at the shock of turning 21 as my outlook on the future is exciting yet scary, as this gigantic career ladder becomes a bit easier as I watch my friends lives unfolding in new directions in the same manner as my own.

Only when writing this have I realised that this post is more about subconscious feelings rather than mini eggs, as I notice there is a long list of resolutions in my head (which I shant bore you with unless I get mass demand), but whilst resolutions might be traditional to make after New Year for people, it's traditional for me to keep them flowing and rather successfully complete them.

In case you haven't telepathically noticed, I'm writing this year's blog with long (for me) cared for, and prettyful nails.

Which is another thing I can cross off.

Also if your wondering who that gorgeous house belongs to, It is the new student pad for my third year along with 4 other beauts that I already live with. We accidently called the house Sophie, so expect a lot of 'shes' 'hers' and 'Sophie did this' in my blogs to come.