Teddy Bear Jacket

FASHION - I just LOVE this jacket made out of teddy bears. Its by artist/designer Sebastian Errazuriz (who also brought us the zipper dress).

I want one!

Naomi Campbell and the Blood Diamonds from Liberia

August 5th 2010.

In 1997 Nelson Mandela hosted a private dinner for celebrities and statesmen in South Africa. Among the attendees was supermodel Naomi Campbell and Liberian dictator and warlord Charles Taylor. Taylor was so smitten by the supermodel that he attempted to flirt with her and later, in the middle of the night, two men knocked on her door and delivered to her a bag full of uncut diamonds worth a fortune.

The next morning Naomi Campbell told friends and other celebrities what had happened over breakfast, including actress Mia Farrow who later retold the story.

What happened afterwards becomes foggy. The sale of blood diamonds from the war zone is highly illegal. The diamonds were supposedly a gift from Charles Taylor, but they were arguably a curse for the "none too smart" Naomi Campbell who claims she didn't even know there was such a thing as conflict diamonds or blood diamonds.

“I didn't know anything about Charles Taylor. I didn't know anything about Liberia. I had never heard of blood diamonds,” says Campbell.

Note: As a fashion supermodel Naomi Campbell has access to people who could sell and cut the diamonds.

In April 2010 she denied receiving any diamonds to reporters. “I didn't receive a diamond and I'm not going to speak about that,” said Campbell, before punching a camera and fleeing reporters.

For years Naomi Campbell denied ever receiving the diamonds. But she eventually admitted receiving the diamonds and was later subpoenaed and forced to appear before a war crimes trial for Charles Taylor or face 7 years in prison for refusing to testify. Campbell’s claims that she had never heard of Liberia were met by laughs in the court gallery.

Naomi Campbell claims she gave them to Nelson Mandela's children's charity, but the charity strongly denies that ever happened.

When that failed, she claimed she had given the diamonds to the director of the charity. He too, denies ever meeting Naomi Campbell or receiving any diamonds from her.

Its alleged Naomi Campbell may have sold the bag of diamonds for Charles Taylor, either pocketing the money for herself or giving some of the money back to Charles Taylor who then used it to buy guns and ammo for the decades long civil war in Liberia.

Naomi Campbell has a long history of being erratic and lying. When she's not high on coke, she is assaulting a police officer at London’s Heathrow Airport when the airport lost her luggage in 2008, assaulting her personal assistant / maid in 2000 and again in 2007.

If found guilty of perjury Naomi Campbell would face prison time.

Edward de Gale shows How to Dress for Success

If you don't know who Edward de Gale is let me explain.

He's a charity worker in Toronto.

He's the guy who got things going back in the late 1990s and early 2000s and brought about energy subsidies for low income families and people and helped prevent many Canadians from becoming homeless.

He even met Prime Minister Kim Campbell, Russian President Mikhail Gorbachev and has a thank you letter from Queen Elizabeth II for all his fine charity work.

And how did he manage to do all this?

It wasn't that hard.

He wrote lots of letters to politicians in Toronto, Ontario, and various parts of Canada and the USA.

He gave a lot of speeches and explained things eloquently in a way that people could understand them.

In other words Edward de Gale got things done.


Probably not.

No, lets face it when you want to be taken seriously you have to dress for success. That means wearing the following...

A suit and a tie.
Well polished shoes.
A trench coat or suit jacket.

Looking at the photos shown here of Edward de Gale in action, you can see what I mean.

Kim Campbell might have been able to get away with wearing a Toronto sports jacket - she was the prime minister after all, but just because she dresses like that sometimes when meeting people doesn't mean the rest of us should dress like that.

The point I am making here is that suit makes the man (or the woman). Looking professional DOES matter.

Which means that even someone who is not famous - is relatively unimportant - can rise to become an important person by presenting themselves as someone to be reckoned with.

And it doesn't hurt that Edward de Gale studied law and then used his knowledge of the law to help people. A shining example of what brains, good fashion sense and an eloquent tongue can accomplish.

If you want to research more on the charity work done by Torontonian Edward de Gale see the following websites:

  • Share The Warmth
  • City of Toronto: Community Service Volunteer Awards - 2002 winners
  • Cyberspace warmer place as charity goes online - Toronto Star
  • Toronto Charity Gives Energy, Not Food - Environmental News Service
  • Homeowners get burned over heating costs - Globe & Mail
  • Gouged customers shocked by power costs - Toronto Star
  • Extreme cold brings out the rescue squads - Toronto Star
  • Price increase hikes demand for 'power bank' - Ottawa Citizen
  • Share the Warmth in the News - Various Sources, Toronto Star, CTV
  • The Conserving Homes Program - The Distributor, April 2006
  • Housing Awareness Event - 2006
  • Toronto needs a new vision of the future, says Edward de Gale - Lilith News
  • Ottawa Hydro leaves poor in cold - Centretown News
  • Growing number of households caught in Ontario energy crisis - Toronto Environmental Alliance
  • ClimateCare Launches Program With Share The Warmth - ACHR News
  • Hydro, rent aid for poor `inadequate'; $2 million subsidy needed - Ontario Tenants
  • Housing awareness event 2005 - Cottage Country Now
  • Electricity bills to rise 3 to 15 per cent - Energy Probe International
  • Unique Osgoode-based charity converts donations into warmth in Toronto - York University Gazette
  • Consumers Brace For Expensive Winter - Vive Le Canada
  • No one's accountable for high heating costs - Durham Region
  • Enbridge News Release - January 2001
  • Lights out for low-income hydro consumers? - Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA) [PDF]
  • Annual Share the Warmth program under way - February 2006, Niagara This Week
  • Poverty Issues Advisory Committee - July 2004 Report
  • Health, Recreation and Social Services Committee - October 2002 Report
  • Share the warmth presentation - County of Simcoe [PDF]
  • Edward de Gale on LinkedIn
  • Edward de Gale on Twitter
  • BootyPop your Buttocks

    FASHION - Remember the 1980s when a tiny butt was considered sexy?

    Well now you can have a tiny ass... but look like you have a bit more bounce in your bottom. Basically they give you a sexy ass like Beyonce, or at least the illusion of having one.

    Susan Bloomstone and Lisa Reisler are the Canadian inventors of “Booty Pop”, padded panties that give you a bubble butt without the need for surgery. The panties cost $19.99 USD.

    Bloomstone and Reisler met at McGill University. Bloomstone is a producer for CBC’s The Journal and Reisler used to be a fashion merchandiser. Together they've managed to make their BootyPop panties go viral with their BootyPop infomercial, and have since appeared on television shows The View, The Today Show, Regis & Kelly and The Tonight Show.

    The pair noticed a societal shift towards shapely buttocks. Breast implants were no longer a big deal because what women want now is butt implants... but they don't want to spend a fortune and they're worried about permanent side effects. Enter BootyPop and the solution is provided.

    Its a bit like the water bras skinny young women were wearing circa 2001 to make their breasts look bigger.

    Or like George W. Bush's business suits with the padded shoulders. Same idea.

    The pros: There's no risk, its not permanent and BootyPop panties cost about the same you'd pay for regular panties. BootyPop panties are cotton/Spandex panties fitted with two egg-shape foam pads and are no more complicated than a pair of boots with a zipper up the side (and if you can't figure those out, you're in trouble). That makes them ideal for date night or when you're trying to impress someone with the coveted bootylicious look.

    BootyPop panties are basically for young women who are, shockingly, too skinny and have realized their flat ass isn't sexy. They want a more voluptuous and curvy look.

    Booty Pop's playful warning: “The makers of Booty Pop are not responsible for all the extra attention you will receive as a result of wearing our product.”

    BootyPop is not the only company trying to glorify a baudacious booty. Jean manufacturers have begun marketing butt enhancing designs and shoe companies Reebok and Sketchers are promoting shoes that encourage butt muscle development.

    “People are always finding ways to look better. You take off your padded bra, your contact lenses, your hair extensions. When it all comes off, you better have a good personality,” says BootyPop co-designer Bloomstone.

    Wonder Woman's Fashion Makeover

    Wonder Woman has a new look, for the first time in 69 years.

    And frankly its about time she got rid of the stars on her buttcheeks. That was a little too American and clichéd.

    The new Wonder Woman hits stores TODAY, and its the landmark 600th issue. She's still hot, she still takes long-time love interest Batman's breath away, but its a darker and more modern costume... and it reminds me of Rogue's costume from X-Men.

    "It's a new contemporary look that matches the storyline of the series," says Dan DiDio, co-Publisher of DC Comics. "We wanted to reinvigorate a character that has had a [look developed] in the 1940s for the current audience and hopefully attract a new audience."

    Will it make comic book fans happy? Doubtful. They rarely like change.

    The 600th issue also starts with a much darker storyline by writer J. Michael Straczynski. Wonder Woman's home is reduced to ashes and ruins and there's a dark side to the new heroine: She wants revenge but needs to come to terms with her own humanity. Revenge was always part of her character, but they're playing it up more now.

    "What we also haven't seen before is her new look, the first significant change in her appearance since the character debuted in 1941," says Stracyznski. "It reflects her origins in both the outside world and the world of Amazons: tough, elegant...a street-fighter's look which also incorporates elements of her classic design."

    Wonder Woman was created in 1941 by psychologist William Moulton Marston as the ideal heroine. They tried to change the costume in the 1960s to appeal to the feminist movement, but that didn't go over that well. "The less said about that the better," says Straczynski about the previous failed attempt.

    DC Comics is betting it will be different this time around. The new costume is only a partial change... no more star-covered shorts in favour of tight black pants. Everything else is still there. Its pretty much guaranteed the shorts will continue to pop up in artwork and issue covers, but the plan is to gradually use the new costume more often.

    Ameircan Apparel going bankrupt

    Is sexy still profitable... or is there such a thing as being too sexy?

    American Apparel, in the business of selling everything from sexy socks to sexy shirts for 21 years, is going kaput. With 280 stores in 20 countries its difficult to imagine how a company that only sells fashion items that are (more or less) chosen for their sexual appeal. Admittedly it isn't very focused... American Apparel sells everything - socks, shirts, bed linens and even stuff for kids and pets (which is a tad disturbing considering how raunchy their advertising campaigns are). They market to a very narrow audience of mostly SKINNY female 18 to 24-year-olds.

    American Apparel also uses only a single factory in L.A. to pump out all of its clothes. Everything is Made in America. Except it wasn't all being made by Americans. The L.A. factory was discovered last year to be using a workforce of 1,500 illegal immigrants (one third of his staff) and has since been struggling to replace that staff with American workers.

    But American Apparel wasn't paying their staff low wages either. The workers in the L.A. factory were getting double what the minimum wage is, generous health care benefits, free English lessons and even massages.

    Last year, American Apparel posted sales of $559 million USD. Profits are up 93% in the last years, from a huge downturn during the start of the American Recession in 2007.

    But a combination of debt (AA owes $91.4 million to London-based lender Lion Capital), over expansionism and a too narrow focus on skinny young women has resulted in a company swimming in debt and not enough skinny young women buying clothes. (Especially in the US market where 33% of teen girls are obese and approx. 60% are overweight. Which is ironic because American Apparel also owns Colossal Clothing, a plus size line for men, but not for women.)

    Unless saved by a miracle investor American Apparel is expected to be out of business by the end of June.


    You've probably seen American Apparel ads before. They tend to stand out for their sheer luridness. Like watching the opening trailer for a James Bond movie.

    Lots of ass, lots of breast, lots of skin in general. It appeals not to the average woman, but to the more slutty variety. American Apparel founder and CEO Dov Charney once commented "there are some of us that love sluts. It could be an endearing term."

    So yeah. Unashamedly slutty.

    Not slut shaming here. The glorification of it?

    Its been the stuff of feminist debate for a generation, with women pointing out how American Apparel objectifies women... and the opposite argument that women who shop at American Apparel are simply expressing their sexuality... an idea that is bolstered by post-feminism (which says women always have a choice when it comes to how they want to express themselves).

    The thing is however is that not many women have been choosing American Apparel. Its gone out of fashion to dress like a slut.

    Oh sure, there will always be those women who prefer to dress slutty (for whatever reason), but the fact remains that the women out there who are buying clothes apparently are not flocking to American Apparel for their choice of slutty garments.

    With time American Apparel could probably make a comeback by cutting back on production of clothing that isn't selling, focusing less on advertising and more on quality (at this point all the young women who like American Apparel already know about the store anyway)... and presumably American Apparel's style of clothing would come back into fashion and popular again at some point in the future.

    But the problem is that American Apparel doesn't have that much time. Its gone the way of the Dodo bird.

    Knitted Sleeves

    FASHION - I saw the knitted sleeves below on a website and my immediate response was I WANT THEM!

    I don't care if they make it look like I have Popeye arms. I also don't even know what they're called. I just know I must have them!

    Peter Nygard's empire reeling from CBC expose

    By Ai Lung Nguyen - April 2010. Edited by S. MacNevin.

    Peter Nygard's fashion empire is reeling today from a recent blow to its popularity. So much so his army of lawyers and staff (those that are still loyal to him and/or have never actually met him) have been sent on the attack, trying to discourage the blogosphere from writing about his dirty filthy life...

    And how he is basically a 21st century "slaveowner" living in the Bahamas, according to the National Labor Committee.

    Let me explain...

    Peter Nygard is a Canadian fashion designer who owns a string of fashion stores for women. He has done very well at it and is now a millionaire (his net worth is valued at $800 million) living on a chunk of an island in the Bahamas where his employees are not allowed to leave the compound and are basically treated like slaves.

    According to the CBC Fifth Estate documentary "Larger than Life", Peter Nygard also has faced a string of complaints from airline staff, fashion models and even women as young as 16... the long and short of it is he is an abusive "rapist" who hides behind a team of lawyers and basically gets away with whatever he wants to do. The allegation of rape comes from a young woman who was once a guest on Nygard's estate but has since gone missing. Nygard's lawyers claim there was no foul play, but the girl hasn't been seen since.

    Recently a multitude of ex-employees (including two escapees from his Bahamas compound) made a huge expose on the CBC show The Fifth Estate, basically exposing to the world that Peter Nygard is nothing more than a temper tantrum prone sexual predator who treats his employees like slaves... the kind of man who deserves a come-uppance. The Fifth Estate has received numerous past awards for the quality of their investigations.

    Now here is where the blogs come in... ever since that the Fifth Estate aired that documentary Peter Nygard's lawyers and staff have been attacking all the blogs which mention what a big phony he is, how he masquerades as a playboy when in reality he's a 67-year-old man who cheats on his wife and has sex with astonishingly young women.

    Back in January 2010 Peter Nygard set a record for child support payments, $15,091 per month for children he fathered. So far he has fathered 7 children by 4 different women.

    Philanderer? You bet. Low life cheating bastard is a better description. Slaveowner might be a stretch (read the National Labor Committee report on how Peter Nygard is involved in human trafficking and forced labour in Jordan), but forcible confinement would certainly be accurate for someone who would not let his employees leave.

    These are the kinds of words Peter Nygard does not want to be described as. His reputation and his clothing sales are at stake if a boycott against him is formed... too late.

    Numerous boycott pages on Facebook have been made, but they keep getting deleted by Peter Nygard's lawyers by claiming they contain copy-written material.

    But the thing is, between the Fifth Estate documentary which shows Peter Nygard treating his employees like slaves and the National Labor Committee report which shows he is involved in human trafficking / sweatshop labour, Peter Nygard's reputation is on the ropes.

    No amount of lawsuits or lawyers will stop the anti-sweatshop movement from talking about Peter Nygard and encouraging a boycott of his clothing lines.

    Boycotting Peter Nygard

    FASHION - Its not often I discuss boycotts, but in this case I am making an exception.

    Peter Nygard is a 67-year-old Canadian fashion designer known for marketing to women in the 25 - 35 range, supporting breast cancer research and his playboy lifestyle.

    But what you might not know is he routinely treats his workers like slaves, abuses labour laws, skips out on paying for work permits, uses sweatshop labour in his factories... and his sex life involves 16 year old girls. Sometimes younger.

    According to former staff Peter Nygard routinely has wild sex parties, has a staff member who is charge of luring young women with promises of being on the lookout for supermodels but in reality he's just looking for a roster of young girls to have sex with. Some of them allege he's raped or sexually abused them.

    In one case Peter Nygard admitted the one girl had been living on his wallled estate in the Bahamas and that she had been there since she was a teenager. She had basically been held captive there because employees and guests aren't allowed to leave the estate without Nygard's personal permission.

    Staff members allege Peter Nygard frequently has temper tantrums and shouting matches, verbally and physically abusing employees for HOURS at a time. Many employees have left due to a combination of physical, sexual and verbal abuse.

    And then there's his factories overseas in China, India and Indonesia... where women and children work in sweatshop conditions producing clothes that are later sold in Peter Nygard's stores in North America and Europe.

    So do you want to buy clothes from a man who is best described as a "tempersome rapist" and a "belligerent control freak"?

    I think I'll pass. I'd sooner spit on him if I ever met such a horrible old man in person.

    Its my firm opinion that most men who get involved in the women's fashion industry are just doing it so they can live like playboys and have sex with young women. Peter Nygard confirms that belief. He's an absolute sexist pig.

    Fashion designer Alexander McQueen commits Suicide

    February 11th 2010.

    Fashion designer Alexander McQueen was confirmed dead yesterday morning. The 40 year and 4 time British Designer of the Year hung himself in his luxury apartment. According to McQueen's twitter website he was upset over the death of his mother, Joyce, who died a week ago.

    McQueen is described as the Hooligan of British Fashion, first starting in London’s famed Savile Row at age 16 where he worked as a tailor for Anderson & Sheppard and Gieves & Hawkes. He was lead designer at Givenchy from 1996 until 2001 before joining Gucci. He was awarded the CBE in 2003.

    McQueen first gained attention for his “Bumster” look (pants cut low at the back to reveal ass cleavage). In haute couture he was known for his sculptured silhouettes, sending trained wolves down the runway and even based a collection on the Salem witch trials. He even sewed a vulgar message into the lining of Prince Charles' jacket.

    His Highland Rape 1995-1996 collection featured torn bodices and was a commentary on the Scottish Highland clearances of the 18th century.

    McQueen's mentor, Isabella Blow, also killed herself three years ago at the age of 48. After her death, McQueen went on a pilgrimage to India in hopes of finding spiritual solace.

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