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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Let Me Be Your Fantasy

Fantasy Ride is one of those blogs which entertains and educates at the same time. Founder, Michelle Owusu manages to take topical issues such as video vixens, weaves, diversity on TV and swagger and dissect them in a way that is both intellectual yet relatable. Michelle calls the blog her personal take on the entertainment and creative industry and the effect it has on society. Created in 2008, Fantasy Ride is the like the Big Brother of the entertainment world where everything is noted, observed and then reported right back at us. I took five with Michelle to find out more about her fantasy ride.  

What made you start blogging?
I started reading blogs about four years ago when I went away to university - it was my way of staying in touch with what was happening in the world of entertainment. Blogging was something that I watched from the sidelines as I never really thought of what my place would be within it. My friends and I always had debates that lasted hours about things that were going on in the entertainment world and they were always very entertaining as they often got quite heated. So I decided to take the debate to the blogs...and so Fantasy Ride was born.

Describe the concept behind Fantasy Ride?

Well as mentioned, I like all things entertainment whether it's music, film, television and even celebrities. What I find even more interesting is how this industry has such a large impact on culture and society. Celebrities are role models, music artists start trends, and films can bring an issue into the limelight and mainstream news - they all create a public debate so the influence of the entertainment industry is very powerful. The Fantasy Ride title evolved from the idea that the industry is considered to be so glamorous. There are talent shows full of people trying to get into it but often the reality is much darker than most expect, so it's like a fantasy world full of ups and downs. So that's what I try to get across in my blog. I highlight both the joys for example, the positive changes made to diversity within television as well as the not so great issues such as the effect of video vixens on the perception of women. 

How do you think bloggers have made an impact on the media?

In my opinion, the impact is huge. Personally, I go online for most of my news and information so will find out the latest way before it comes on the television and in the newspapers. Bloggers are often considered journalists so the challenge for traditional media now is how to deal with the advantage blogs have with disseminating information in real time. However, I do think that the US appreciate the power of bloggers more than the UK but I feel that we are catching up, especially in the world of public relations where blogs are becoming a larger part of communication strategies. I think that the corporates and consumer brands definitely need to take more initiative when it comes to blogs as consumers are more likely to buy a product or service based on recommendations from friends, family and even the comments underneath a blog post rather than if it was advertised on television.  

What do you do when you are not working on your blog?
I love dance, especially hip-hop/contemporary styles so I'll probably be dancing a piece of choreography in front of a mirror somewhere. I also watch a lot of internet television and uploads on YouTube, mostly U.S shows such as The Hills, The City, America's Next Top Model and The Rachel Zoe Project. Other than that, I'll be on Twitter, reading someone else's blog or out to lunch/dinner with my friends getting into a heavy debate about entertainment's latest hot topic.

Describe a typical day in the life of Michelle Owusu.

At the moment, my day is not so typical. I was working at a public relations company for the last year after graduating from university in 2008, but now I am preparing to start an International Marketing Masters programme. So right now, I'm juggling some freelance marketing and public relations work as well as getting ready for the study nights and early library starts that are about to come my way. 

You are always wonderfully opinionated in Fantasy Ride is this something you set out to do?
As mentioned, Fantasy Ride was born out of the debates that I often have with my friends so I try to include the same attitude in the blog. I try not to force my own opinion across but I will state what I think as well as welcome alternatives. I love hearing what other people think as they might highlight something that I haven't considered and that might change my own view. Sometimes when I start a post, I might not even know which side of the fence I stand, so often they are just written transcripts of my thought process so by the time I've reached the end, I know where I stand.

Where do you source your stories from?

I think my blog is different to other entertainment blogs as it's not a news/information site; it is more a commentary on something that most people have already read about or seen. That's probably why there is no real pressure to deliver timely information. A subject has to pull at me and make me want to go deeper into the topic; this may be something I have read on another blog, seen on television or read in a newspaper. For example, my most recent post was about Tyra Banks revealing her real hair on her talk show. I had heard about this on E News and even from the lady herself as she posted the news on her Twitter. So I decided to talk about this hair issue, what is means in society and critique some of the thoughts and ideals that accompany it.

What are your favourite glossy magazines?

My favourite is Glamour magazine as it is the perfect mix of celeb interviews, news, career advice, love stories and both high street and luxury fashion.

Name five blogs that you read religiously

Five!!! That is way too little a number so I might go over. The first blog I began to read daily was Concrete Loop. Other dailies include The YBF, Sandra Rose, London Fashion Trends, The Cocoa Diaries, Pbleepd, Mad News, The Wider Perspective and Diary of a Fab Black Woman.

How do you see Fantasy Ride evolving over the next two years?

Good question, I haven�t really thought that far ahead. I do it for my personal enjoyment so as long as I love it, I'll keep doing it. Hopefully the following will grow as I love to hear what other people think and contribute to the post through the comments. Possibly some guest writers in the future - anyone interested, get in touch!

You can follow Michelle on twitter here.

From The Mailbox

Attention Beavercreek, Ohio: Althea Harper will be at Jenna Claire Handbag Studio on Saturday October 3rd. Click here for more information. We would love a field report.

Qristyl Frazier will be at Phoenix Fashion Week. Click here for more infomation.

Bravo has announced that Project Runway Season Four Champion, Christian Siriano will be getting a tv show of his own. Click here for more information. The Magical Elves are producing. When does Christian sleep?

Wikipedia as a book!

"Done by designer Rob Matthews: it's big, it's bad, it's the Wikibible!
Clocking in at 5000 pages and 1ft 7 inches high, Wikipedia is kind of available in book form.
To be precise it only contains 0.01% of Wikipedia content - the featured articles section, but that's more than enough to keep you in bedside reading for many years.
In fact at that size, you may as well use it as your bedside table," tells

Little Britain

There�s something child-like about Luella (or should I say Lolita) shows year after year. Either it�s a catwalk full of kiddy Halloween costume inspired wear, or it�s Minnie Mouse head-bows like this season. The models are clutching their luscious leather handbags as if beloved teddy bears and their make up looks like it was done by an eight year old. Although I may sound critical, I actually think there�s something sexy about grown women dressing like little girls. I wonder if Anna Wintour, sitting front row, is thinking the same thing, or is it just me? Either way, the innocence and playfulness of Luella�s designs bursts in like a ray of sunshine onto a dark runway. Another repetitive trend for her S/S collections has been flower patterns, but the way Luella does flowers leaves no doubt they will be the ones picked off the racks. Her charming dresses, fit for an English Rose with a hidden thorn, boast a full skirt and a cut out heart detail over the chest. As if stolen from some poor unsuspecting doll�s closet, the rest of the collection included high-waist polka dot shorts, downy dresses, and cute Marilyn-inspired coats�a sex symbol who knew all about acting like a little girl.
The dresses from the collection we just saw on the runway also looked stunning on celebrities at the after-party at Bungalow 8. We were the only ones managed to sneak in with no line...thank you very much! All thanks to 6 years of PR and my fabulously hot Harper's Bazaar RU editorial friends - Natalia Alaverdian and Polina Boiko.

S/S Trend Watch, Luella: polka dots, short dresses with a full skirt, full shoulders, flowers, bright colours, and raiding your kid sisters closet.

More photos:

The September Issue

Went to see 'The September Issue' at the Z�rich Film Festival yesterday with Nicky.

shorts - Zara; necklace - H&M; platform boots - Zara

Set Your DVRs

Heidi Klum is on Ellen today - click here for a preview.

Project Runway Season Six designers Christopher Straub, Qristyl Frazier and Althea Harper will be on The Rachael Ray Show tomorrow. Click here for a preview - Nina Garcia is judging. FINALLY.

Tim Gunn will be on The Bonnie Hunt Show tomorrow.

Tim will also be on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on Friday night.

Material Girl - Yay or Nay?

Remember back in April when I was raving about the new BBC series, Material Girl which is based on the book Fashion Babylon written  by Imogen Edwards-Jones?  Well, the show which hits our screens in mid October has been given a right royal panning in this week's Grazia. According to journo, Paul Flynn, Material Girl is nothing more than a cliched one-dimensional folly. So I decided to check out the trailers to find out for myself and I am sorry but I have to disagree; because the show looks riveting and totally slick. Not only that it reeks of money and you can tell that a lot of cash has been sunk into this and it really pays off. Sorry Grazia but you have got it wrong. On another note it was great to see comments on Material Girl from fellow bloggers, DisneyRollerGirl, FredButlerStyle and Queen Michelle from Kingdom of Style. The review is on page 81 in case you want to have  a peep.

Have a look at a clip from the show and tell me what you think. You can also check out the BBC website to see the actual trailer.

There is Still Time....

There is still time to bid on the episode six garments. Right now Christopher's design has the highest price. Click here to see all of the auctions.

Also, please vote in our Episode Six polls. Do you agree with the judges?

My Space- Queen Michelle from Kingdom of Style

Kingdom of Style is one of those blogs that people just love. It must have something to do with the quirky charm of Queens Michelle and Marie who are the trendy fashionistas behind it. The blog is an outlet for the two ladies to show their love of fashion and has been listed in Online Fashion 100 which is a list of movers and shakers in online fashion. Well after reading about Queen Michelle's workspace on Kingdom of Style  a few weeks back, I decided that I needed to have her for the My Space section. 

Describe the concept of Kingdom of Style.
Simply a place where Marie and I share our thoughts and experiences of fashion and style. 

Where do you scribe?
In a little corner of my living room. 

Why that place?
It's the only available 
space I have in my house.

What is on your desk at the moment?
Pretty much everything! Magazines, USB sticks, perfume bottles, a feather headdress, a camera, a pantone book, a permanent market, tailors chalk, various crap like buttons, hairpins, an earring, two keyboards, two mice, a charm bag I'm putting together, a seam ripper, random bills and letters and a notebook - loads of stuff and it grows every day. 

What form of inspiration do you have on the wall or desk ie photos, magazines cuttings or extracts?
I have only a cross stitch in a frame that my boyfriends mum created for me. Other than that the walls are bare. My inspiration is in a folder on my computer and a scrapbook I keep with images cut from magazines. But the most important inspiration is in my head. 

Do you keep a tidy office or are you a messy worker?
I'm an exceptionally messy worker! My computer itself is very organised and clean but my physical space is completely chaotic. I live in utter chaos pretty much all the time.

Wall-Mounted Hand Hook (Think about Halloween, too!)

By Harry Allen at Elsewares.
Offer Wall-Mounted Hand Hook
This striking cast of designer Harry Allen's hand is ready to hold just about anything. Precise polyester resin cast mounts easily to any wall.

Grab Wall-Mounted Hand Hook
This striking cast of designer Harry Allen's hand makes a great key hanger, wall hook or change holder.

Bestow Wall-Mounted Vase & Candleholder
This striking cast of designer Harry Allen's hand comes with both a tube vase and a candlestick holder.

Matryoshka Measuring Cups

"M-Cups are a set of 6 dry-measure cups which nest neatly just like traditional Russian matryoshka dolls. They accurately measure 1/4, 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 3/4 and 1 full cup, and are built from heavy-duty, food-safe plastics. M-Cups are useful, easy to store, and super cute... so why not doll up your kitchen with a little Russian folklore?" Price $12.00 Buy from

LEGO Tic-Tac-Toe Game Sets!

Amazon sells LEGO Tic-Tac-Toe sets. The playing pieces are policemen/robbers or pirates/soldiers who attach to the Lego game board. Great gift!

Cute Dressers for kids

"Look at these amazing children's dressers. Can you even stand the cuteness? The mama and baby elephant are my favorite. My French is sorely lacking otherwise I would give you more details about each of these pieces; all I can guarantee is that they are not cheap. Nevertheless, what a joy these are to behold. C'est magnifique! Visit Lili Gribouille." (via

Be Different...

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Francesco Scognamiglio