My friend's birthday is coming up. I know it's a bit weird, but since she loves bananas and fashion, I thought it would be funny to combine the two and give her a bag with b-a-n-a-n-a-s somehow on it. Does one exist or is it only in my imagination?
Fashion A Peel, SoHo
The Dictator rules: Ooh, get you, so imaginative. Sorry, you're no style visionary. Think Josephine Baker, Andy Warhol's album cover for The Velvet Underground and Nico, and, right now, the banana-filled windows at Kate Spade. Let's begin with Kate Spade's Flights of Fancy collection, which offers banana bags in all shapes and sizes (HK$700 to HK$3,300; www.katespade.com) from a banana-shaped leather coin purse to a ladylike top-handle bag in cream leather decorated with, you guessed it, yellow leather bananas. For something more "meta", there's a white cowhide pouch/clutch emblazoned with the word "BANANAS" in perforated dots and decorated with a banana charm at the wristlet. Banana- print canvas tote? Drawstring shoulder bag? A bunch of bananas as a clutch or crossbody bag? Yup. Quirky label Yazbukey (Harvey Nichols, The Landmark, Central) captures a pop art feeling in blue and yellow banana-motif bags, including the Le Banana plexiglass clutch. Can you go yellow from head to toe? Yes, or use your bright new bag as a highlight in a monochromatic look, or to add whimsy to T-shirt and jeans. But don't go Carmen Miranda on me. One fruity item will do, thank you.
I've just learned I'm pregnant and while I'm very excited I also want to be prepared. I'm prone to stretch marks and I'd like to minimise the damage. What are the latest and greatest creams?
Stretch Wretch, Bowen Road
The Dictator: Interesting. You've just received some of the most wondrous news there is, and that's where your mind goes … Let's start with the basics. At your nearest Watsons, you could pick up the product pregnant women have been using for years, Palmer's Tummy Butter for Stretch Marks (HK$168), made with cocoa butter, plus argan oil, almond oil or lavender (HK$228). Chrissy Teigen, the celebrity model best known for being John Legend's wife, used La Mer's The Concentrate to avoid stretch marks during her recent pregnancy. You can, too, for HK$3,790 for 50ml. Why, you ask? Well, considering its primary use is to soothe and strengthen skin, it sort of makes sense since stretch marks are the result of skin thinning due to fluctuations in weight. Specialist line Mama Mio uses algae extracts in its Goodbye Stretch Marks (HK$590; Linea Negra, 1/F, Welland House, 62 Wellington Street, Central). Organic options from farm-to-table skincare line Erbaviva include Stretch Mark Oil (HK$350; Harvey Nichols, The Landmark). And African Botanics makes Marula Stretchmark Botanical Body Oil (HK$590; Joyce Beauty, Pacific Place, Admiralty) with 100 per cent essential and botanical oils. Good luck. You'll need it.
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