2015 was quite a light year when it came to actually buying anything that’s really worth talking about. Many months went by when I didn’t see much more than the four walls of my bedroom, and treating myself or getting something that I needed rarely even registered in my mind. Hell, I could hardly find the strength to brush my teeth during that time.
But, the things that I did find in the ‘good months,’ and the gifts that I was given, I would really like to share with you. Primarily because a lot of the people behind these goods need the support of the likes of you and I, to be able to continue doing what it is they love most in the world. I’m also sharing this post with you because, as you can see by the content of WW&E, I love to introduce people to artists they may not have encountered before or otherwise. I also like to shout about services which I’ve used, as well as products from well-known brands that do deserve to be commended. (Yes, there are a few that exist!)
You’ll also see a fair few thrift items in this post. That’s because many of my favourite things from 2015 have been found in second hand stores, and I want to spread the word that thrifting is (nearly always) the way to go when it comes to modifying your wardrobe. So…I shall begin…
I was so excited when Icelandic film Malmhaus (Metalhead) was released on DVD with English subtitles. I’d previously interviewed the director Ragnar Bragasson and found him to be a truly inspirational creative figure and wonderful all-round human being. The film itself is a masterpiece of modern cinema. (Of course I had to grab myself a pot of Skyr to eat while watching it.) You can get your copy here.
I can’t remember the exact date that I stumbled across the work of Swedish artist Pär Strömberg but I do recall my soul shifting, and feeling this urgent need to see everything he’d ever created. A short while after featuring his work on Wyrd Words & Effigies, I purchased a copy of his book Darkness Visible. You can read my review of this stunning publication here and, if you also find yourself entranced by his work, you can purchase yourself a copy here. I was fortunate enough to attend Pär’s Those of the Unlight exhibition in Stockholm back in September, so if you would like even more of an insight you can find my feature on the exhibition here.
I discovered Swedish new-folk twosome Occult back in 2014 and, after conducting an interview with them, received their first demo Skogen in 2015. It’s a haunting collection of songs which deserves your attention. I’m not sure what’s happening with Occult nowadays, but I highly suggest you check out their music here. If you can get your hands on their demo, I highly suggest you purchase it asap.
When I was volunteering at Blekk Metal Festival, I met Norwegian creative Martin Mentzoni who was at the festival as a vendor. Martin is the creator of the awesome Kaffi Zine and alongside copies of his publications, he had lots of buttons for sale. This one one of the four that I nabbed. Martin isn’t only an inspirational creative, but he’s also one of the funniest people I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting. Support him and his works by first paying a visit to the Kaffi Zine website.
For Yule, I made the decision to get some new jewellery. So, I treated myself to two pieces that were already made – a carrion crow leg necklace and a squirrel paw necklace. I also purchased a kilo of bones (mostly sheep and foxes) so I could make some of my own jewellery. All of the above were purchased from Fenris’s Creations, a fantastic, affordable store on Etsy.
I’ve been wanting to have a pair of wearable antlers for ages, so, with money from my Grandmother for Yule, I purchased these two exquisite pairs from Hysteria Machine, a macabre accessory business based in London. To read a review about my experience with my new headbands, just head here.
I’ve been using VistaPrint for my business cards for years now, and can’t recommend them highly enough. Perfect quality every single time. I used my own photography for my current card. I think they actually have a 50% sale on right now.
This shopping bag from Norwegian Rat is one of the best purchases I’ve ever made. It’s indestructible! The team behind the bag (and many other products besides) are genuinely great people, and deserve all of the support they can get. You can read a review I wrote recently for this bag here and also buy your own here.
I’ve been wearing the same boots since 2010 and up until a few months ago, I was convinced I’d be wearing the same style until I died. Until, that is, I saw these leather platform boots by Windsor Smith in TKMaxx for an awesomely low sum. Lets just say I saved nearly £100.
Another pair of boots which have recently come into my life are these unworn Alpine Snowsport Moonboots which I nabbed for £6 from my local Marie Curie store. Marie Curie is a charity shop which provides care are support through terminal illness. We have one in town and I always make a stop whenever I’m passing just to check.
I’ve been expressing myself a lot more through my fashion blog this year, and it’s been a really good move on my part. It’s made me feel more confident, and encourages me to make the most of what I have in my wardrobe. I tried culottes for the first time in my life this year, and I got the pair in these photos for 59p from Age UK, a charity dedicated to improving the lives of elderly people.
The leather black belt in this photo cost me 50p and of everything that I’ve bought this year, it’s one of my very favorite things. The dress cost me £1. The three skirts underneath the dress all came to a total of less than £3. All from charity shops.
The bracelets are belts and they cost me 50p each. Again, charity shops. And there’s that gorgeous black belt again…
This most perfect mug featuring the timeless artwork of the great, late Theodor Kittelsen was purchased from Bergen airport. So, if you ever happen to be there, after check in and security, make a bee-line for the bookshop and there you will find this beauty. I don’t know if it’s available online, but there’s no harm in checking.
And that’s about it for this year. I hope you’ve enjoyed the read and that you’ve encountered something new that you feel you want to look into further. Please let me know if there’s anything in particular that you think I ought to be checking out in 2016.