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Issue 1 April 2011

Exclusive interview with Latin superstar Shakira Are you a Gossip Girl? The top reasons why we love the rumour mill Fashion v. Function: When did getting dressed become a chore? It’s 5 o’clock somewhere! The Best Cocktails in London

The Gypsy Princess:

Your favourite fairytale with a modern twist

Contributors Illustrators: Jutiporn Aupaiboon MA Visual Communication, Birmingham City University

Marie Evans Editor

“Researching real estate that I know I’ll never be able to afford.”

Sarah Thomas Project Manager

“ I check it about 10 times a day”

Jason Lear Ellen Li


Anita O’Sullivan Designer “Plain, stodgy food (the harder to digest the better!)”

Ana Maria Ospina Designer “Watching whole box sets of TV shows in one sitting”

Tamsin Ayre Lola Bukvic Kristy McDonough Laura Ortiz-Garrett Ashley Griffin

Coralie Anderson Writer “Bruce Willis. I get pretty excited at the sight of him”

Ellen Guainiere Writer “E! News...can’t get enough of that trash!”

Special Thanks: Desmond O’Rourke David Penfold

Kasia Stawowy Writer “Mojitos and Haagen Daz Cookies & Cream ice cream”

Nat Suphawatanakiat Production “I dance to Justin’s songs. Not Timberlake...Bieber!”

Dear Reader, On my computer, I have a folder labeled “Vacations”. In this file, I’ve stashed a wide array of fantasy getaways for my partner and I: a ten day cruise through the Mediterranean feasting on the freshly baked bread, gourmet cheese, and oak-barreled red wine followed up by a relaxing detox in an isolated hut surrounded by the turquoise blue waters of the Galapagos Islands. When my work days become too much to handle (as they tend to do, particularly on those rainy idle Tuesdays), I open the folder on my desktop. With a click of my mouse, I am immediately transported from the confines of my office and the dreary London weather to another world. A world filled with room service, hot stone massages, and four course dinners on the beach. Can I afford these vacations I have got neatly tucked away in cyberspace? Of course not. Even if I could, when would I find the time to take them all? Most likely never. Here in lies the beauty of it, though. That tiny blue folder represents the world to me. Literally. It is my escape and my guilty pleasure. What is a guilty pleasure you might ask? Going back for that third helping of ice cream, stalking an ex-boyfriend on Facebook, daydreaming about a tropical vacation you’ll never be able to afford- the answer is different for everyone. However, one thing is certain: with bills to pay and errands to run, regular life can be stressful enough. Your magazine shouldn’t be the same way. News reports and stock portfolios certainly have their time and place, but leave those for 9 to 5. You already spend forty hours a week dealing with the complexities of the world, why spend your free time doing it as well? So we are here to relieve you from the shackles of your responsibilities. The to-do list can wait; take a time out and treat yourself to something you deserve. In these pages you will find everything you need to escape reality for a while and suit your fancy, whatever guilty pleasure that may be. From fashion tips and dessert recipes to a fairy tale of “Royal” proportions, this first issue of Guilty Pleasure magazine will leave you feeling relaxed, refreshed, and perhaps even a little bit naughty...and that’s just the way we like it! (And don’t worry, we’ve made sure to design the magazine to look proper, even if the content is not. Who said celebrity gossip and happy hour cocktails don’t belong in a world of fine art and high brow culture, anyway?)

Sincerely, Marie Evans Editor Issue 1 April 2011


This Month... Features:

13. Superstar Hips & a Heart of Gold 4. Will and Kate’s Big Fat Gypsy Wedding 8. Celebrity Marriage Advice 10. Gossip Girl Guilty Pleasure gets an exclusive interview with Shakira!

A modern twist on the classic childhood tale.

Fashion: 22. Style Profiles

The best trends in town- have you been spotted yet?

26. Fashion v. Function

When Did Fashion Stop being Fun?

18. Disney Roller Girl

The infamous hidden blogger steps out from behind her wardrobe to dish with us!

What do Posh and Becks say about the big day?

Guilty Pleasure examines the psychology of bitchiness. Why do we love to keep the rumour mill churning?

28. No Job, No Pants, No Problem 17. Diary of a Facebook Stalker An inside look at one girl’s self-decided unemployment.

If you are friends with your cousin’s ex girlfriend’s brother, you may have a problem.

Food and Drink: 36. Desserts

So sinfully decadent, you’ll need a priest to bless them.

38. Cocktails

It’s five o’clock somewhere! The best places to spend your Happy Hour.

20. The Chocolate Conspiracy

We debunk the biggest myths surrounding your favourite flavour.

Every Issue: 3. Don’t Feel Guilty If

A laundry list of all our dirty habits

33. Missed Connections

The place to be for hooking up or striking out

30. Other People’s Love Lives

What happens behind closed doors doesn’t stay there anymore...

16. Blogs We Love

Click here for our favorite online authors

34. Guilty Pleasure London

What are your plans around town this weekend?

39. Redeem Yourself

Your monthly dose of redemption

The bar of

chocolate you thought would last all week only lasts a couple hours. Your favorite piece of

lingerie is a pair of sweatpants.

You’re secretly relieved you killed your house plant. You weren’t ready to be a parent.

You joined a book club for the

wine rather than the books.

Don’t feel guilty if... You don’t like

Lady Gaga. What’s with those crazy outfits anyway? You consider Uggs an essential part of your wardrobe.

You gave him a fake number. He wasn’t that fit anyway. You sometimes press ignore when you see your mum is calling. You’ve bought a special

The only

dress for Will and Kate’s wedding, even though you’re not invited.

cardio you do is walking up the escalator from the tube.

The couch is more fun than a club some Saturday


Dinner = 4 slices of toast with Nutella and a cup of tea.

You made the first move. It’s

2011. Issue 1 April 2011


Special Feature

Big Fat Gypsy Wedding Author: Marie Evans. Illustrator: Jason Lear.


nce upon a time in a land far, far away, there lived a handsome prince. The young price was unrivalled in his popularity – every woman dreamt of winning his heart. But much to their dismay, there was only one girl for this dashing man. After a courtship of ups and downs, most under the watchful guard of the public eye, the prince asked for her hand in marriage. The happy couple were engaged to be wed. Though there were many broken hearts across the land, they were soon mended for his young love really was the most beautiful girl in the court. As their loyal subjects began to accept their love, the couple began to plan for their special day.

4. 5.

After seeing and dismissing many a planner the couple began to worry that the wedding may not be the elaborate extravaganza everyone expected. None of the wedding planners they met with were the right fit for the occasion. Some of them were too theatrical, others without enough experience. The prince and his maiden were looking for someone who was just right. One evening, after yet another unsuccessful event planner, the soon-to-be princess cried out into the cold London night, “Where, oh where, could my wedding planner be?” The couple did not know it yet, but the answer was on its way; a new and mysterious group had arrived in the dead of night and woke not a soul – it was not until the morning mist began to lift that the townspeople saw wagons glittering gold. As word of the new visitors spread through the palace, the prince and his future princess called these strange people to them at once. They demanded to know everything about them and the peculiar caravans of glistening metal they traveled in. “We are here to help you, your royal highnesses,” said the leader – a burly moustached man with a thick accent. “We will create the most unbelievable wedding that anyone has ever seen.” Upon this revelation the princess’ eyes widened with excitement. But, she wondered, how could this man, with nary a servant in sight, plan such an extravagant affair? As if reading her mind, the man turned towards her and answered, “I, madam, am a Gypsy. I plan Big Fat Gypsy Weddings all over this land”.

“I, madam, am a Gypsy. I plan Big Fat Gypsy Weddings all over this land.” They had heard only stories of these mysterious people who roam the countryside. The princess knew not of their history or heritage, but only of their reputation and their entertaining ways. Children who as young as six are allowed to wear costumes made of neon spandex and dance strangely to loud music. Her curiosity got a hold of her. What would her wedding entail, she asked aloud. With every whisper of his enchanting plans, it was as if a spell was cast over them. “Very well,” she said, “I appoint you....” “...but first we must tell the Queen” the prince remarked. The fair maiden looked at him, a sparkle in her eye, and coyly replied, “She entrusts us with this decision, we need not concern her”. Though the girl couldn’t be precisely sure why, she knew she didn’t want the Queen finding out before the big day. Spellbound, the prince agreed. And so the preparations began. Like any young bride, the princess-to-be dreamt of her wedding dress all of her life. Visions of soft cream with lace danced in her head, but her wedding planner had a different idea in mind. One by one dress designers were shooed away. Farewell Vera Wang. Same to you, Vivienne Westwood. She could not understand why he turned them away. The Gypsy reassured her; he already had the perfect dressmaker. But first, she must prepare herself. For if she so desired the dress he had planned for her, she needed to train and build up her muscle. He enrolled the maiden into an intense weight-lifting program. Six days a week, the princess would pump iron with some of the strongest lads in London. With every protein

Issue 1 April 2011


smoothie she pounded, the Gypsy promised her the dress of her dreams. With her secret dress tucked away, the happy couple focused on the other details of the affair. In no time at all, they organised a river-side reception on the banks of the Thames, white pitch tents lining the sidewalks. Music would be filtered from the best nightclubs in town, with DJ turntables carved from ancient Belgium wood and children from nearby Gypsy caravans set to choreograph routines from Lady Gaga’s last tour. It would be a sight for all to see. Before long the week of the wedding was upon them. The dress was ready for its reveal. Nervously, the girl peeked out from behind covered hands and gasped. The dress was unlike anything she had ever worn before. Several thousand layers of bright pink toile peeked out from beneath a canvas of glistening crystals and silk. Embroidered along the back of the train was the entire first act of Romeo and Juliet, complete with hand drawn pictures of the X Factor to accompany it. Months of strength training had the princess in the best shape of her life and as the Gypsy and ten of his strongest men worked to lift the heavy gown over her head, she finally understood why. She used her newly formed biceps to lift the veil onto her head, a veil that shone with the wattage of 3,000 hallogen light bulbs.

Several thousand layers of bright pink toile peeked out from beneath a canvas of glistening crystals and silk. She turned to see a glimpse of herself in the mirror. “Ah! Help!” a muffled voice squeaked out in alarm. Slowly, the maiden began folding the dress back pink layer by pink layer, the voice growing louder with every pull of the fabric. “Hellllppp. Can’t. Breathe. Under. Here.” “I’m coming!” She cried frantically. At last, the man whose the voice belonged to was found. He had slipped during the dressing and was pinned down under the weight of the gown.As she looked at herself in the mirror in awe, the Gypsy discussed last minute arrangements. She would need tanning this week, and a lot of it. At least three trips a day to the nearest salon and only the best tanning bulbs were to be used. She needed to achieve the perfect orange glow by week’s end. “Can’t I use the 3,000 bulbs atop my veil?” she asked curiously. No, the Gypsy explained, they were of a different sort. She would also need eyelash extensions and acrylic nails before her transformation into a Gypsy princess would be complete. This would truly be a wedding no one could ever forget. The big day had finally arrived. The Gypsy arranged for them to arrive in one of his finest caravans. The trailer he called for was of the highest caliber, with double entry doors, granite counter tops, and stainless steel appliances inside. It was a caravan fit for a Queen. But the Queen still did not know what sort of wedding she would be attending that afternoon. Although she made several remarks over the week regarding the bride’s changes in physique and skin color, the dress and Gypsy wedding planner were still a secret to everyone.


Watch clips from My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding at

Papparazzi and adoring subjects lined the cobble-stoned streets in hopes of glancing a peek at the famous couple, eyes peeled for any recognisable town car. Little did they realise, this was not the typical royal affair. The crowds began to grow anxious as time passed without any sightings. It was not until the caravan made a stop in front of the great Abbey did people begin to wonder who was inside. Who would drive up to a wedding in that contraption? Surely not anyone worthy of our attention, they surmised. Yet as the doors to the trailer slowly opened and a red carpet lined with puppies and diamonds unraveled in front of them, gasps of shock could be heard throughout the land. The princess! It was she inside that Gypsy caravan! Flashes of photographers light bulbs went off in a flurry, but none could get the proper shot. For it seemed that the girl’s crystals and veil threw too much of a glare onto passersby. She was a vision of loveliness that would be burned into everyone’s retinas for decades to come. The Queen was appalled. As the bride made her entrance up the front walk, the Queen stormed towards her in a rage. How could she plan such a thing? How would anyone take the country seriously after this? Didn’t she realise the President of the United States would be inside, and the US never liked to be upstaged. Just ask those Jersey Shore kids they are always raving about over there. Before the bride could say a word, the Gypsy planner stepped in her place. He took the Queen by the hand and led her aside, whispering calmly in her ear in the same manner he had once done with the happy couple themselves. Instantly, a tranquility floated through the air. “That is quite a dress you’ve got there, my darling” the Queen sighed. “I’ve never seen such a thing”. With that, she went inside to prepare for the ceremony. The rest of the day went off without a hitch. The newly wed couple danced late into the morning as sounds of Girls Aloud could be heard from miles around. As the last of the wedding guests made their way back home, the princess searched for the Gypsy planner to say thank you but he was now here to be found. All that was left of the Gypsy was one tan Timberland construction boot. As she picked up the boot, she looked out into the starry night sky and silently thanked her Gypsy Godfather. She returned to find her Prince Charming and together they lived happily ever after. To this day, children still ask their parents and grandparents to tell them the story of that special event. “Please,” they beg. “Tell us the story”. Adults look into their children’s innocent faces and with a tousle of their hair and a gleam in their eye, they begin to once again to tell the tale of Will and Kate’s Big Fat Royal Gypsy Wedding.

The End. Issue 1 April 2011


Illustrator: Ellen Li

“The secret to a successful marriage is children: as many children as you can find! Time to invest in a five seat stroller.�


Tweet your wishes for the big day to @Guilt_Pleasure!

“Don’t forget the pre-nup Kate! Remember one in three marriages ends in divorce.”

“Ignore silly rumours from jealous employees and believe in your loyal husband.” Issue 1 April 2011



The Psychology of Bitchiness Author: Lola Bukvic. Illustrator: Jutiporn Aupaiboon

The other day I was catching up with an old friend over coffee. Because of our hectic work schedules, we hadn’t seen one another since the New Year began. Our conversation flowed naturally as if we hadn’t skipped a beat. As we rehashed everything, it would be absurd to deny that a dash of gossiping wasn’t thrown in here and there. Yes, gossiping. Otherwise known as the time honoured tradition of trash talking. It would be ridiculous for one to classify themselves as an anti-gossiper, we all secretly enjoy a good spout of gossiping and dishing the dirt on others. As Joseph Conrad, a Polish born novelist once stated, “Gossip is what no one claims to like— but everyone enjoys”. With this being the case, if we find such great enjoyment in kicking back and trashing others, making mockeries of their misfortunes, then why can we not put an end to our hypocrisy of labelling others as the modern day Bitch without crowning ourselves with the same title?

Unquestionably, the reason we avoid being stereotyped as a bitch is down to its common perception of being cold-hearted and rude. However if we are all guilty of this, would it be such a catastrophe to stop beating around the bush and own up to it? It may be easier said than done, as confessing to this foul nature raises the risk level regarding our social worth and place in society. Oscar Wilde once declared, “There is only one thing worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.” But it would be more beneficial on a personal level that if when we become the topic of conversation, our positive aspects and achievements overrule our downfalls.


Robin Dunbar, a British evolutionary psychologist, claimed that gossip is what initiated Homo sapiens to develop language. With this concept laid down, it is apparent today that we have established a love-hate relationship with gossiping; it has the ability to aid social bonding. From the workplace to the school playground, spreading rumours instigates and strengthens friendships, in a sort of “I’ve decided to share this with you as I consider you to be worthy and valuable” manner. And when it comes to love, by indulging in rather pointless chitchat with our partners, we are unconsciously aware that our aim is to boost the levels of trust and reliance within the relationship. As we battle this mass addiction to chatter which has consumed society, it seems that we still cannot pinpoint why exactly almost two-thirds of adult conversations onsist of gossiping. Have we simply run out of things to say, and found that by discussing others our conversations never run dry? Our love for gossiping can also be linked to our own self-esteem and confidence. From a psychological standpoint, criticising others ultimately makes us feel more superior as we tell the tales with utter dismay, assuring ourselves we wouldn’t dream of doing such a thing. But an excuse to this lies right around the corner. Taking into account that we are social beings and communication is a necessity, bitching about others when they’ve pushed our buttons is simply a way of expressing and releasing our built up anger and frustration. As gossiping begins to sound essential rather than damaging, we could begin to wonder why we have become so sensitive towards it? When we begin to come across as such cruel creatures within our social network, we are not entirely to blame for our behaviour, as the slippery slope of gossiping has certainly been influenced by the celebrity culture that surrounds us. As shows such as Desperate Housewives and Gossip Girl grace our screens, there is no doubt that we have been encouraged to take up this back-fence talk. Gazing at our 2D icons, as they engage themselves in petty talk, we feel it is acceptable to follow suit. Not only have we been inspired from the box in our living rooms, but from the magazines and newspapers scattered across our kitchen counters. With the likes of Paris Hilton and Britney Spears forgetting their underwear to the latest Red Carpet blunders, we have become so adept at gossiping about these celebrities that it translates to our everyday encounters as well.

Issue 1 April 2011


With our society becoming increasingly digitalised, gossiping is simply a click of the mouse away, diverting us to our most pleasurable indulgence. Alongside sites such as Perezhilton and TMZ, lie our very own gossip platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. The traditional way of gossiping over coffee has now become a thing of the past, as we only need to log onto our social network accounts to be bombarded with endless visual and written updates on others lives. Originally created for the purpose of virtual interaction and maintaining contact with all four corners of the world, social networking sites have lost their true meaning as we have all turned into online gossipers. It would be astounding if I could count on both hands how many times I have heard phrases such as “I was on Facebook and Jack popped up on newsfeed…” or “Did you see what Elsa wrote on Chloe’s wall?!”. Sounds slightly familiar doesn’t it?

So now that it’s all in the open and we search within ourselves for the inner chatterbox bitch, maybe the time has come for us all to let our hair down and take gossiping with a pinch of salt. With a more nonchalant outlook on ‘hearing it through the grapevine’, we can finally bid good riddance to the guilt. If we all agreed to gossip openly, that sneaky feeling would disappear and our guilty pleasure in this act would without a doubt be lost making it commonplace and therefore mundane and dreary. So call up a friend for a quick chat, or hop on Facebook, and unleash the hidden bitch within, because let’s be honest, we’re all doing it. Go on, you know you want to.


Exclusive Interview

Shakira: Superstar Hips and a Heart of Gold With two Grammy awards under her belt and over 60 million records sold worldwide, Latin singer Shakira is no stranger to the spotlight. Her musical talent, rock hard six-pack abs, and “hips that don’t lie” have successfully launched the Colombian-born superstar to international fame and popularity. But behind the platinum selling albums and sold-out tours is a woman with a heart of gold. Shakira has made her philanthropy and charity work a priority and her efforts have not gone unnoticed. As the founder of The Barefoot Foundation, she strives to provide a better education for young children everywhere. Eager to learn more about it, Guilty Pleasure staff writers Ana Ospina and Marie Evans were able to catch Shakira in a rare moment of free time to ask her a few questions.

First off, we want to thank you for doing this interview with us! As you know this magazine is part of an ongoing project for the London College of Communication. We know that education that is something that you hold close to your heart as well, especially concerning The Barefoot Foundation. Could you tell us more about your foundation and the work you’re doing? GP: What motivated you to start the foundation? Shakira: When I was a child, my parents went through some bad economic times which resulted in us losing many privileges. I was upset about the changes in our lifestyle and complained to my parents about our new hardships because I didn’t understand them. My parents decided to show me what real poverty and hardship was. They took me to a park in the south of Barranquilla where I saw many children sniffing glue to mask their hunger and sadness. That day I decided that if I became successful in my career I would do something to give hope to these children. My life has allowed me the opportunity to help these children, and I am inviting everyone in my generation to join this cause and help improve the lives of poor and vulnerable children. Where does the name “Barefoot” come from? Pies Descalzos is the name of the album that opened the doors to international success, but also the image of the footprint is associated with vulnerable communities in which we want to make a mark with quality education. Do you have any stories from your days in school? Funny events? Embarrassing moments? Oh gosh, those were great days! It was a very strict Catholic school for girls. Since then I loved to sing but I was kicked out of the school choir because the tone of my voice didn’t measure up with the tone from people in the choir!!!


Your next album is called “The Sun Comes Out”. We’re so excited to hear it. Tell us more! “The sun comes out” reminds me of the first albums like “Pies Descalzos” and “dónde están los ladrones?” It has various facets: a romantic one with intense songs that reflect the special moments of my life, another one a little more rocker like and also a merengue direction, product of my curiosity. I visited the Dominican Republic wanting to get to know the roots of the merengue and while I was there I got to record with the Cata, obtaining in this way a great Latin result.

What inspires you when writing your songs? My songs come from a very special side of me. Each stage of life gives me ideas to give a message that result from the combination with my imagination. When I find songs that talk about happiness and hope I feel comfortable. With “The sun comes out”, I’ve gotten into a trip to my inner self and to my musical tastes, always feeling it with my heart. What is next on your schedule? Just wait and see…

“I was kicked out of the school choir” Why “The Sun Comes Out” as the title of this album? It is called in this way because I feel that this year in particular has been a very beautiful year. It is a very honest and transparent album that shows what I am; I´ve had an encountered with myself in various senses. The Waka-Waka brought along many answers of what I was as an artist and which were my purposes with my public. And with this album I believe that the sun has come out for me. How do you create songs that become popular worldwide given the multiple cultures of people? I have learnt a lot of my public and it has given me the confidence to let my imagination fly. In life it is very important to take risks, to create and to make mistakes. For me it is very important to be honest and to bring happiness to the people with the things I make, and this happiness comes multiplied back to me.

Can we expect a European tour anytime soon? At the end of my LA tour I hope to be back in Europe. I have a special attachment with fans in the Old Continent! If you had one piece of advice for women finishing school and entering the “real world” what would it be? I would say to them that they should achieve their dreams, to be creative, that they should have great imagination and be recursive to develop all their projects. Most importantly I would tell them to include in their goals the humanitarian help; nowadays the world is in so much need and we must be involved. As modern women, we must maintain the passion for what we do.

“nowadays the world is in so much need & we must be involved.”

To find out how you can contribute, visit For details on Shakira’s next album go to her website, Issue 1 April 2011



Blogs We :

Long gone are the days of scrawling private thoughts into a journal on the nightstand. The expanding world of social media has become a playground for people’s private thoughts and public consumption. In the era of tweets, twitpics, blog posts, and status updates, many people are tossing aside the pen and paper in favor of a more technological way to share their innermost quandaries. What once started with a quiet boy from Harvard creating picture profiles of his peers has spawned a new generation of young people eager to share their opinions on all things cultural, media, and entertainment related. From french kissing to french toast recipes, this desire to take your insights to the Internet has created a blogging explosion. With many services such as Blogger and Wordpress offering free platforms, it seems everyone is starting a blog these days. We’ve compiled a list of some of the best reads from around the blogosphere and there’s a little something for every girl’s guilty pleasure on this list.

Eat Like a Girl (

A food and recipe blog for the well-traveled twenty-something gal, you can find everything from drinks to desserts on here. As blog author Niamh describes herself: “I have a lifelong passion for food. If I am not eating, I am planning my next meal. If I am not talking about it, I am cooking it”.

Tiny Nibbles (

A shockingly seductive and open-minded blog by author Violet Blue, regarded expert in the field of sex and technology, you might leave here blushing, but we know you’ll thank us later.

Go Fug Yourself

( With a tagline that reads: “because Fugly is the new pretty”, you can trust you’ve come to the right place for a sarcastic and satirical look at celebrity fashion flops and flubs.

A Luxury Travel Blog (

The title speaks for itself. Break out from that dreary London fog and plan a whimsical stay at the Four Seasons Maui. Can’t afford it? Lucky for you, daydreaming and blog stalking are free!

Stilletoed Socialist (

For the politically-minded lady, get insights and opinions about current UK politics from a young female’s perspective. (Always better than the old man perspective if you ask us!)


( This pop culture blog centers around this statement: Celebrity, Sex, Fashion for Women. Without Airbrushing. Jezebel breaks the mold of traditional women’s magazines and websites and offers hundreds of contributing bloggers the opportunity to let their opinions be heard.

Disney Roller Girl (


This infamously anonymous blogger has written a behind-the-scenes insider’s look at what it’s like to work for a major fashion magazine. Her fashion tips and tricks have created quite a big name for herself, despite no one knowing what her real name actually is...until now. We’ve managed to snag an exclusive interview with notoriously discreet Disney Roller Girl on pg 20.

ADDICTED TO FACEBOOK With around 500 million users worldwide, Facebook is the 21st century phenomenon that looks set to stay. Around 50% of users log in every day and it rates highly in our list of Guilty Pleasures. We’re sure we could all do with a little less face-to-screen and a little more face-to-face time so if you find yourself nodding along to these statements, it’s time to log out. You know you’re addicted to Facebook if...

Your bedtime is two hours later than it used to be. That 1am message from your slightly worse for wear friend demands an urgent reply! You are ‘friends’ with a bunch of people that you’ve never actually met You religiously check your ex’s Facebook activity and know everything about his new girlfriend...and her ex... On the rare occasion you pry yourself from the computer and go out, you take 400 hundred photos of you and your friends having superbly posed fun The sight of that that little red box brightens even the glummest of days

Despite your endless ‘event invites’, you’re facing another night in front of the screen

A poke is the closest you’ve come to physical contact with the opposite sex for longer than you’d like to admit You’re regularly introduced to people you have to pretend to not know. In reality you know that “Jenny from work” went to Mexico last summer and looks great in a bikini. You click refresh in your web browser more than once a day

Your pet/baby/stuffed toy has their own profile

How you look in your profile picture is more important than how you look in real life You regularly harvest a crop whilst living in inner city London or feed your fish travelling on the tube Facebook is your homepage Issue 1 April 2011



Disney Roller Girl

Coralie Anderson talks to the fashion blogger and industry insider. Named one of the “Top 40 Bloggers Who Really Count” by The Times, Disney Roller Girl is a big name in the fashion blogging world. Her anonymous blog attracted a huge following from those who were keen to gain a sneaky peek into the fashion industry.

“Wear more red!”

Maintaining anonymity proved difficult as people tried to dissect the clues of her posts and recently Disney Roller Girl revealed her true identity. The reception has been huge and the secret blogger has found her profile soar. In a rare few free minutes, we grabbed the opportunity to have a quick chat. GP: Hi Disney Roller Girl, how long have you been blogging for? DRG: Four years. What is it that initially attracted you to the blogging world? I liked the idea of having my own online publication and being a bit of a technophobe I wanted to see if I could do it. And then of course I got hooked!


Topshop £10


Style369 £45


Miss Selfridge £48


Were you surprised at the popularity of your blog? Yes. When you start a blog you think no one is going to read it. I think it helps that mine had a unique angle being an industry insider and anonymous. I was able to blog about press days, launches and industry news from an insider’s perspective and people like getting that insight. Why did you decide to ‘come out’ as the face behind the Disney Roller Girl? It got to a point where all my contacts knew it was me simply because I was leaving huge clues on my blog. I’m surprised people kept it secret for so long!

Visit for more fashion tips from the expert herself

Pardon the blur: the only official shot of the previously anonymous Disney Roller Girl

What are your plans now that your identity is known? I have designed the blog to include a few more features so I can do more with it. I would like to do a bit of video blogging but I’m not going to be plastering my face everywhere. What has attention you’ve received been like? It’s been great but also overwhelming. I still want to stay under the radar so I’ve turned down some opportunities but I’ve been approached about some really incredible projects. Being anonymous is great but once people can put a face to the name it opens up so many more doors. Do you think it will change your blogging style? I’m really focusing on maintaining the same feel and tone as I think that’s what people relate to. What are you top style tips for this summer? Personally, it’s about wearing more red! Do you have any products that you cannot live without? Bobbi Brown blusher and Carmex lip balm. And finally, what is your Guilty Pleasure? The Daily Mail website - so horrible and horribly addictive.

Issue 1 April 2011



The Chocolate Conspiracy:

Why do good girls feel so bad indulging in their favourite flavour? Author: Marie Evans. We all know the feeling: dizzying happiness coupled with the rush of instant satisfaction. Your head spins, your knees are weak, you are in a state of pure euphoria. Then the guilt hits. Regret and shame overtake our gratification as we quickly look both ways and hide the evidence. We whisper our confession to our closest girlfriends and vow “never again” in vain attempts to avenge our seemingly dirty deed. When did eating chocolate become such an illicit activity? Recent evidence suggests that when eating chocolate, the brain produces some of the same chemicals that occur when falling in love; it brings us high levels of pleasure and enjoyment. According to ARISE, the Associates for Research into the Science of Enjoyment, pleasure is a neurochemical process that can improve our immune systems. But if this is true, and chocolate produces such a good feeling in our brains and has such a positive effect on our bodies, why do we tend to feel guilty about eating it? Somewhere between the chocolate birthday cakes of our childhood and the break-up fueled ice cream binges of early adulthood, chocolate got a bad rap. In all actuality, in small portions, chocolate (the darker the better) can be beneficial to us. So before you beat yourself up over the mounting collection of Cadbury stashed away in your secret hiding spot, perhaps you need to give chocolate a second chance. To polish chocolate’s tarnished reputation, we here at Guilty Pleasure scoured the ends of the earth on a truth-seeking mission, determined to debunk the multitude of anti-chocolate conspiracy theories out there.

“when eating chocolate, the brain produces the same chemicals as when falling in love”


For more facts about your favourite flavour check out the feature page on

Myth No. 1: Chocolate causes acne Unless you are unwrapping a chocolate bar and using it as a facial scrub, there is no truth to this statement. Acne is caused by a hormonal production in your glands known as sebum oil. Things like too much fat, greasy foods, and sugar can cause an increase in the oil, leading to acne. This is where moderation comes in. Chocolate can have a place in your life as long as your diet is a healthy and balanced one.

Myth No. 2: Chocolate causes tooth decay The biggest culprit in tooth decay is excessive amounts of sugar and a lack of proper dental hygiene. When chocolate is combined in sticky candy or cheaply produced using artificial ingredients, this increases the possibility of damage, but it is not the actual cocoa that is causing the problem. A great away to avoid this is to choose your chocolate wisely. Think of your chocolate as a luxury indulgence. Choose a product that is made with care and the finest ingredients. While you will may pay a couple extra pounds for it, you will be able to taste the difference and your teeth will thank you.

Myth No. 3: Chocolate has too much caffeine With Starbucks introducing the Trenta, a 916ml coffee cup, caffeine derived from chocolate shouldn’t be a concern. An ounce of bittersweet chocolate has between 20 to 30 milligrams. An ounce of milk chocolate, from 5 to 10 milligrams, and an 8-ounce cup of cocoa, about 6 milligrams (approximately 1/14th of the amount in a cup of instant coffee).

Myth No. 4: Chocolate is fattening It would be unfair to claim chocolate is completely healthy. Although we cannot stack it up in the ranks with leafy green vegetables and whole grains, there are health benefits associated with chocolate. A recent study by the European Heart Journal shows that chocolate reduces the risk of stroke or heart attack by increasing flow of blood around the brain and lowering blood pressure.

Chocolate is not only one of our favourite flavours. Its famous name has been associated with many other things as well: The Chocolate Mountains is a prominent mountain range in California, United States. In the Philippines, there is an unusual geological formation on the island of Bohol known as Chocolate. Industry leading mobile mogul, LG, has a popular mobile phone called Chocolate. Chocolate Starfish is the name of a popular Australian rock group. Kylie Minogue released a top ten single around Europe called “Chocolate”. The film Chocolat, starring Johnny Depp and Juliette Binoche, was nominated for 5 Academy Awards.

Myth No. 5: Chocolate is not an aphrodisiac (or is it?) This myth is still up for debate. British scientists have revealed that chocolate excites many people more than a kiss (especially women). While there is no proven answer to the question of whether chocolate directly relates to a person’s sex drive, most would agree that it is something that signifies pleasure and increases levels of enjoyment, excitement, and satisfaction. Hmmm, higher levels of pleasure and excitement? This sounds familiar... Life is already filled with enough bad things, don’t let chocolate be one of them. Throughout history, chocolate has been revered as a present of the highest honour and a token of one’s respect, admiration, and appreciation. Release yourself from the shackles of feeling guilty and instead appreciate chocolate for what it is: an indulgent gift for yourself or someone else. Besides, who doesn’t love a chocolate covered strawberry every once now and again?

Issue 1 April 2011



Street Walker We all love people watching and the best way to draw style inspiration can be from those around us, so we’ve taken to the streets of London to track down the capital’s most stylish residents to find out how they achieve their signature style and their favourite places to shop...

Tom Mitchell (28)

Where are your favourite places to shop? ‘I treat myself at Hackett and Daks, and I head to Reiss for most other things.’ What’s your guilty pleasure? ‘A greasy kebab on a Friday night’.

Alex Davenport (19)

Where are your favourite places to shop? Topshop and Beyond Retro What’s your guilty pleasure? Gilmore Girls

With her loafers, button down shirt and Tom looks to English brands for his vintage satchel, Alex’s look has a classic Heritage look. Wearing his trusty somewhat tomboy chic feel. She keeps waxed Barbour overcoat with jeans the look fun and girly with the addition brings it up to date, preventing it from look- ofa printed skirt and cute bangs. Topping ing too stuffy. this off with a camel coat she ensures her style is bang on trend.


Ed and Cathy, (mid 20s)

Where are your favourite places to shop? ‘Urban Outfitters for fun pieces and Cos for basics.’ What’s your guilty pleasure? ‘Disco!’ This super cool couple from Melbourne mix vintage bargains with on-trend high street pieces to create their quirky look. They complement each other perfectly with a mix of colours and textures making them look effortlessly thrown together.

Issue 1 April 2011


Nina Crone (20)

Where are your favourite places to shop? Urban Outfitters and vintage shops on Brick Lane. What’s your guilty pleasure? Coffee and cigarettes. Nina’s ensemble is made up almost entirely of pieces found in vintage stores and thrift shops. She has teamed fairly muted pieces with her somewhat controversial fox stole, making it an even more stand out addition to her outfit. Red lips add a pop of colour to Nina’s look.


Nadia Parks (18)

Where are your favourite places to shop? Vintage boutiques, Zara and Topshop Where is your favourite piece of clothing today from? ‘My Shirt is from the vintage store Retromania in Camden.’ What’s your guilty pleasure? ‘Take me Out!’ Nadia is a vintage obsessive and finds her favourite pieces rummaging through thrift stores in Camden and East London. She creates her eclectic look by mixing her heritage blazer with a ladylike silk shirt and red lips, toughening it up with cut off denims and drill boots.

Jess Eckart (21)

Where are your favourite places to shop? Urban Outfitters, H&M and Mulberry. What’s your guilty pleasure? ‘I’m afraid to say it has to be menthol cigarettes!’ Jess, with her mix of tailoring, leather and fun accessories manages to achieve the illusive feat of ‘work wear with an edge’ taking a timeless crisp white shirt and blazer and mixing it up with her bang-on-trend leather shorts. Top this off with a pop of colour from her scarf, desert boots and a trilby and you have office perfection.

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Sandy and April (early 20s)

Where are your favourite places to shop? ‘Topshop, whistles and Mui Mui’ What’s your guilty pleasure? ‘Pink champagne and expensive underwear!’ Fashion bloggers Sandy and April love the great British high street but occasionally splurge on designer pieces to achieve their polished look. Sandy mixes a fur trimmed leather with a cool messenger bag and relaxed boots for an off duty style, while April pairs her biker jacket with suede leggings and killer heels for a flawless finish. Issue 1 April 2011



When did fashion stop being fun? Author: Ellen Guainiere. The pressures of modern life seem insurmountable for most women. Whether you are a powerful executive dealing with the incompetence of your staff or a mother attempting to cope with anarchic children, we all have moments where we feel like it is all too much. Why then should our clothing contribute to this towering inferno of stress? Why can’t our fashion choices offer a means of expression that is fulfilling and rewarding rather than yet another source of anxiety? The truth is that for too long we have let too many outside forces dictate our wardrobe; trends, celebrities, other women, making our choice of clothing just another source of stress instead of the release it should be…When did fashion stop being fun? Because that is what it should be, an escape from the mundane and a chance to indulge, but if Christopher Kane’s neon creations and D&G’S romantic florals filtering onto the high street and potentially into your wardrobe this summer doesn’t excite you, but simply fill you with dread, you are most certainly not alone.

“...we know they are judging, we do it ourselves.” An e-mail popping into your inbox with the subject line ‘catch-up drinks?’ from an old friend is enough to strike the fear of God into some women, quickly followed by the thoughts of ‘What will I wear?’ ‘What did I have on last time we met?’ and ‘How does she always manage to look amazing?’ That ubiquitous question of ‘What will I wear?’ is one that seems to plague women at every juncture, whether it’s dressing for a date, lunch with friends, or even the school run. Every day for women seems to be an opportunity to prove your sartorial credentials (or lack thereof) to those around us, and, let’s be honest, we know they are judging, we do it ourselves. How many of us can truly say we dress one hundred per cent for our own gratification? The truth is, for most women, how their husbands, friends, and indeed complete strangers view them is the reason we make that effort in the morning. For many women, what they wear isn’t their main priority and clothes are for function, not fashion and who has decided that these women should be vilified and made to feel guilty if they don’t quite match up? As fashion bloggers increasingly profile the everyday woman on the street with impeccable style, those whose choice of what to put on in the morning isn’t a conscious decision fuelled by trends, but by whatever is clean and ironed (on a good day). It seems that in a society increasingly interested in what the ‘average’ women is wearing the pressure to be on-trend and, let’s not forget fit perfectly into your size 10s, is palpable.


The way we dress is the perfect way to express ourselves, allowing us to transform the way we feel by changing something as simple as the clothes on our back. But whether that outfit is an Erdem dress and a pair of Louboutins, a Topshop sundress and your battered brogues, or even your favourite old jogging bottoms, (you know, the ones that should have been thrown out a long time ago), shouldn’t every outfit hold its own value, regardless of ‘value’? Not everyone can be an Alexa Chung-esque clothes horse and if you don’t have the guts, body, or even the inclination to rush out and grab the latest trend and effortlessly make it look amazing, don’t stress, and do not feel guilty, we can’t all be that girl. There are some women that seem to be placed on Earth simply to make us girls feel like style rejects. Take Claudia Schiffer for example, making the school run look like fashion week, putting even the yummiest of Notting Hill mummies to shame. Head down to any playground before 9 AM and the reality will be a mixture of women in their workout clothes, those looking immaculate ready to face a day at the office, and some who may not have even made it out of their pyjamas, (the ultimate school run faux pas it would seem). Its less than likely that all will be styled to within an inch of their lives and toting a designer bag, but their style is their own.

“ not feel guilty, we can’t all be that girl.” So how can we put the fun back into fashion? One word. Relax. Because fashion is supposed to be fun and being a slave to the latest catwalk trends can be exhausting, not to mention expensive and can often result in a complete lack of personal style. There is a lot to be said for identifying your own look and sticking to what you know works, rather than perpetually trying to keep up with the fash-pack. The best dressed women are those who manage to achieve a classic and timeless style. This can prove to be not only an infinitely less stressful choice, but one that offers far less opportunity for sartorial blunders. Let’s take the guilt away and dress for ourselves again. If you feel good in it, go for it, regardless of whether your boyfriend raises an eyebrow (what does he know anyway?), or if you fear the office fashionista may give you one of her crushing sideway glances. And if this spring/ summer you don’t feel you can pull off the midi skirt, tangerine brights and all things seventies, don’t fret, just enjoy it, wear what makes you feel fantastic and remember, at the end of the day, those jogging bottoms will always be waiting for you.

Unfortunately, we mere mortals can’t pull these looks off without looking, and feeling slightly absurd!

...maybe the girls had dressed up a bit much to run to the shops for some milk? Issue 1 April 2011



No Job, No Pants, No Problem! For many, unemployment in today’s economy is a living nightmare. For Tina Cordova, it’s living the dream. Author: Tamsin Ayre. “Working sucks, especially working for other people. I’m not a fan,” said Cordova, 27, who currently lives in Arlington, Va., just outside Washington, D.C in the United States. She has opted for a life without bosses, alarm clocks or steady paychecks. Cordova was laid off six months ago when she had trouble getting security clearance for a job with the U.S. government. The staffing agency that helped her get the job couldn’t keep her on once the security clearance fell through due to a processing problem. Cordova then became part of nearly 10 percent of the American population that is currently “funemployed,” as some of the optimists are calling it. One of the most fun parts of this new lifestyle for Cordova is the dress code, or lack there of. Most days, she lounges in her studio apartment sans trousers. “I live alone, and I’ve never really enjoyed pants,” said Cordova. “Even when I had a job, I was always a skirt or dress girl. It’s really a lifestyle that unemployment has allowed to bloom.” Don’t be fooled; it’s not all no trousers and napping all day. Between running errands, dinner with friends and catching up with her TV shows online, Cordova leads a full life that is less like the nine-to-five grind and more like obsessively surfing, an indulgence that has become a part of her daily routine. “It started with me searching normal stuff like the job postings and maybe the furniture section,” recalled Cordova. “Then I moved on to the best of craigslist, missed connections, the personals. Now I’m obsessed with the free section. I look at the crap people are giving away and think ‘hey, maybe I could use that crap,’ but I never follow through. That’s too ambitious.” That might be because of Cordova puts much of her ambition into her crafting projects. Unemployment has given her the opportunity to let her creativity run wild. “I have all day now to craft and make stuff that has no real purpose,” Cordova said. Her blog, Love, Tina Marie, chronicles these projects from a homemade advent calendar at Christmas to a DIY stuffed ottoman to a unique ladder shelf. She has also been busy turning a door into a coffee table (and a chalkboard), as well as refinishing nearly every piece of furniture in her studio apartment. “I’ve actually rearranged my furniture three times in the 10 months I’ve lived here,” admitted Cordova. “My dresser went on every wall three times before ending up right back where it started.”


You may be wondering how she’s been funding this “funemployment.” At first, Cordova got some unemployment checks, but has mainly relied on her savings account to make ends meet. She has also gotten extra cash from odd jobs like babysitting and working one day a week at a children’s gym. Her advice for anyone else who wants to start living the dream: “Save. Save as much as you can every month, because unemployment is not cheap.”

Are you crafty? Post pictures to our blog at

While she may sound like a half-naked Martha Stewart with a penchant for saving oodles of cash, Cordova’s actually got plans to start earning money again. She’s currently building a catering and food cart business to launch in the spring of 2011. The Texas native will specialize in Mexican, Tex Mex and southern comfort foods, so you’d think her favorite meal in unemployment would be some tacos, a quesadilla or some other spicy treat. Instead, she favors something more white bread.”I love grilled cheese. Two slices of Wonderbread and a Kraft single - it’s the dinner of champions,” said Cordova. “Though some nights it’s a handful of Wheat Thins, sometimes it’s a half gallon of ice cream. You just never know what’s for dinner.” So what is the guilty pleasure of someone who lives a life of guilty pleasures everyday? After some coaxing, Cordova admitted to a fairly common treat of watching the longtime American soap opera General Hospital everyday. Her other guilty pleasure is a little more...creepy: “Sometimes I’ll steal over to a friend’s house in the middle of the day, and I’ll sit there for four to five hours before they come home from work and watch their cable.” It may sound illegal, but Cordova assured that she is not breaking and entering. “My friends gave me a key, so I mean, it’s really their own fault. They only have themselves to blame. Plus, what they don’t know can’t hurt them.” I just hope they don’t know about her no pants policy.

“...all day to craft”

“unique ladder shelf”

“turning a door into a...chalkboard”

“ pants policy” Issue 1 April 2011


Other People’s Love Lives Giving Myself a Home Ashley Griffin I love Wednesday nights. It is on these evenings that my boyfriend, Jon, plays rugby with his mates. For those three lovely hours, I have the flat all to myself. Three quiet, peaceful, completely self-indulgent hours. Don’t get me wrong, I love Jon and I rightly enjoy living with him. But there comes a point for every shacked up gal when she needs some time away from smelly sport socks and dirty dishes to partake in the finer things in life - like trashy television and a giant scoop (okay, two scoops) of ice cream. Jon and I have been dating for three years, living together for one. When we first moved in together, my mum told me I’d be living in sin. This whole living-in-sin thing was a hop, skip, and a jump away from the big M (ahem, marriage) and I couldn’t wait. I immediately envisioned naughty nibbles for dinner and tawdry nights in front of the fireplace. Someone forgot to tell me everything else that comes with it. Moving in together was a huge adjustment for me. Suddenly all of the “secret” beauty routines I used to do in the privacy of my own bedroom were on display for Jon to see. What would he think when he realised not all my underwear is black and red lace? Or that shaving my legs is a task often done with one leg propped up on the counter and sink.I spent the first few weeks of our cohabitation a shell of myself. I’d set the alarm thirty minutes earlier than he so I could spruce myself up. I nominated myself to be the official laundry lady of the household. He’d never heard of the term “Granny Panties” and I wasn’t about to teach it to him now. I did everything possible to present myself as the ideal roommate and girlfriend. Three weeks into our new arrangement and it was Wednesday night. Rugby night. As soon as Jon left, I pulled out my oldest pair of sweatpants - the ones with the giant hole in the left knee - and slathered a mud mask on my face. Just as I was cracking open a bottle of wine, I heard Jon’s keys jingling in the door. I looked around in panic. I was busted. Before I could make a move for the bedroom, Jon looked at me, a smirk slowly spreading across his face.I stood frozen in place. Maybe if I didn’t move, he wouldn’t even see me. He met my eyes and we stared at each other intently before he opened his mouth and spoke, “You look adorable. You should dress like this more often”. And with a kiss on my mud-stained forehead and cheeky smack on the bottom, he gave me a wink and walked out of the room. The whole thing was over in an instant. It certainly wasn’t an erotic evening of sinful living, but it was real and it was us and I’ll take living that way any day.


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How to Get Married… Bureaucratically Ever After Laura Ortiz-Garrett For every hundred stories of brides planning their dream day for years, picking out the exact perfect shade of flowers to complement the exact perfect shade of white of their dress… there is a story of marriage by the numbers. Or rather, by the legal documents and for the legal documents.I am happy proof that a marriage that begins for bureaucracy is a beautiful thing. So, if the princess thing ain’t your thang, here’s how you, too, can have a perfectly wonderful, unorthodox wedding. 1. Have your boyfriend of three years get accepted into a PhD program in England (or any other country you could not stay indefinitely without a study or work permit). Admit that, opposed as you are to marriage (even to him, the love of your life), getting married may be the only way to get across the pond. 2. Have the universe conspire to give your insurance-less boyfriend such a bad toothache that you decide to rush the marriage so he can get his dental woes diagnosed with your spiffy insurance. 3. Do not tell anyone except your nearest relatives that you plan to marry because they may hop on airplanes to witness the event (and then expect a ceremony and food, all of which cost YOU money--valuable money you are saving to travel everywhere that Ryanair goes when you get to England). 4. Plan your visit down the Justice of the Peace aisle for an auspicious day, like a Thursday afternoon or the day before the final home-opener EVER of your favorite baseball team before they are moved to another city (sniff, my beloved Montreal Expos, sniff). Note: It would also be auspicious if dog licenses are sold that day, because you may as well pick one up for your dog. 5. Do not shop for a white dress. Opt for something funkier. Ensure that said funkier option does not make you look pregnant (because 99% of the other blushing brides waiting in line to say “I do” on a Thursday afternoon probably will probably be in the pregnant way). 6. Purchase five flowers (bright pink Gerbera daisies) for you, your mother, and your three sisters. For heavens’ sake, woman, you’re getting married! (But just five! No more). 7. Do not laugh so hard that you almost pee yourself during the ceremony. Not even if the Justice of the Peace looks and sounds like James Earl Jones. 8. Though it’s a civil ceremony, you should bring rings to exchange, because the legal nonsense will require them. If you don’t have any, hope that your mother brought her set of marriage rings, use them for the ceremony, and don’t be offended when she pries them off your fingers like she did when she caught you putting them on at the age of six. 9. Go to lunch before driving off into the sunset to watch your beloved baseball team’s last home-opener. Do not, under any circumstances, be seen lunching with your family post-wedding by the reverend from your mother’s church, who will no doubt cast aspersions (of the “Oh Good Lord, was she pregnant? Because that empire waist is suspicious…” variety) until her failure to bring a spawn of your sin to church convinces him you must have married hurriedly on a Thursday afternoon for other, still dodgy, reasons. 10. Celebrate your honeymoon with baseball. Because nothing says love like pints of Labbatt Blue in plastic cups, a cup of Montreal’s finest fries-cheese-and-gravy concoction poutine, your favorite baseball team…and the knowledge that, someday, you will have a hell of a wedding tale to tell. See? No fighting over place settings, no tiffs with photographers, no warring bridesmaids…Just pure bureaucratically-driven convenience—and a penchant for travel, the ridiculous, and bad baseball. Now, THAT is my kind of wedding.

Issue 1 April 2011


The Satisfaction of Being Single Coralie Anderson If there’s one thing I just can’t stick about being single it’s not that I don’t have a man to curl up with on cold winter nights (I don’t think any man could handle my rigorous reality TV schedule), nor that I can’t go on romantic dates and stare into each other’s eyes across the table (nothing beats glamming up and going out with the girls) – it’s those sympathetic looks and nods I get from my coupled up friends! It seems like nobody can understand how I can possibly be happy living a single life, but trust me, I am. From what I hear about everyone’s relationships, I’m pretty sure I’ve got it good. No man telling me what to do or what not to do. Most of my girl friends in relationships seem to spend most of their time moaning about so-called Mr Right. They tell me about their boyfriends getting moody if they stay out all night and dictating what they should be wearing, who they shouldn’t be going with. Boring! As a single girl, I’m worry free. I can go out when I like, with anyone I like and come home at whatever time I choose. The thought of a man trying to rule any part of my life has me sweating under the collar as I write. Come on ladies, stand up for yourselves - I think I’m the one that should be sympathetically rubbing your arms, not the other way round. Dates are another advantage of being single. While I’ve been through my fair share of disastrous first dates (seeing your blind date and using all your strength to not run in the opposite direction is not the best start to an evening), I’ve also had some great ones. I love to meet and get to know new people and I certainly love to wine and dine. Dates are a great excuse for both and providing you’ve picked the right guy, you can have a lovely meal, flowing conversation (and drinks) with no strings attached. A cheeky kiss at the end of the night may be on the cards – bonus – and if they know what’s good for them, they’ll offer to pay and your bank balance will remain untouched. I find dating new people far more exciting than the prospect of going to the same places with the same person and most probably ordering the same food. The possibilityof meeting someone new around every corner is what keeps things more exciting – after all, what is it they say? Variety is the spice of life. So there we have it. Single life is fun and unpredictable – you meet new people, get to go on lots of dates and still hang out with the girls whenever you like. Ok, ok, so I’m not ruling out a boyfriend full stop or gradually transforming into a hardcore feminist spinster, I’m just testing the waters before I make the big leap. Like mother always said to me, “It’s better to taste everything on the menu before you choose what to order,” right?


To submit your missed connection, email us at

Missed Connections To the girl in the blue dress that I bought a drink last night in Movida: I never caught your name and would love to buy you another!

To the gorgeous man that smiled at me on the Central Line last night, same time tomorrow?

You: black jacket and purple hat. Me: green Barbour jacket. We pass each other every evening on Oxford Street. Where are you going, I wonder?

I see you reading your book every morning on the Tube. You look adorable when you’re concentrating. What book will be next?

To the gorgeous blonde who waltzed past me on Bond Street yesterday, let me buy you a martini. You won’t regret it.

To the guy in Pret on Carnaby St that drinks flat whites. We make eye contact almost every morning on our coffee run. Fancy sitting down for a coffee one day?

To the guy who rides the Victoria Line from Finsbury Park every morning playing on his iPad. Look up for a second and maybe we can arrange a date!

Saw you on Rogers St. walking your dog and you said hello. I really wanted to ask you your name and number. Didn’t. Too late?

The tall, tanned guy in a suit on the Northen Line this morning, please find me again - I want your babies!!

Issue 1 April 2011


London’s Guilty Pleasure Guide: The very best places to indulge, spoil and treat all of your senses…

Bea’s Bloomsbury

Daunt Books

Elemis Day Spa

Everyone loves cupcakes. In London there is only one place where you can fully indulge yourself in possibly the best cupcakes you can imagine. With a stunning window display that cannot be missed, Bea’s Bloomsbury Café offers a delicious brownies, biscuits, cheesecakes and a lot more. It is a perfect spot for visiting on a cold and grey day, huddled inside with a steaming pot of tea or variety of coffees ranging from Boliva, Peru and Sumatra.

This is independent, old fashioned bookshop located in a magnificent Edwardian building in Marylebone is any book lover’s dream. It is best known for its excellent travel section where books are stock not by author or category but by country. It’s a great place to look for an inspiration for a trip. And with amazing selection of history books, fiction and much more you can spend hours there. Daunt Books is a magical journey of discovery.

This place will give you a luxurious escape from the stress and pressures of everyday life. Elemis day spa offers a fantastic treatments ranging from well-being massages and facials to the more exotic 4.5 hour Balinese Ceremony of Reverence and Moorish Ceremony of Dreams. Great products and a professional and knowledgeable staff makes this spa very unique.



Poste Mistress

Mathew Alexander

This place is an ultimate guilty pleasure for all ‘meat lovers’ with the best burgers in town! You won’t want to speak, drink, look anywhere but forwards to your next bite. Its great value for money (£6 for a cheeseburger!) and the vibe of the place is lively and buzzing. Yes, you must be patient, the food comes when its ready but you can enjoy the wait with some excellent cocktails and you’ll be richly rewarded.

What is the best way to cheer yourself up? Getting a new pair of shoes is definitely on a list. If you love beautifully crafted shoes that will last more than one season Poste Mistress is a place you want to visit. The boutique has an amazing selection of shoes by the most desired designers such as Vivienne Westwood, Miu Miu and Lulu Guiness in addition to a fabulous range of the shop’s own brand designs.

A trip to Mathew’s salon is a real treat. It’s perfect for special occasions when you need to look and feel fabulous. You get invaluable tips to take away and use again. It’s impossible to leave without feeling good about yourself. This place is a cosy, friendly oasis and so worth every penny!

Issue 1 April 2011


Food & Drink

Delicious Desserts

(For All Skill Levels) Simple: Dream Bars Marie Evans

This dessert is perfect for the girl in a hurry (or who would rather watch Gypsy Weddings than bake a complicated dessert). With only four steps and six ingredients, this recipe is the perfect solution to your culinary conundrums. Cut them up and share with friends or keep a secret stash all for yourself, it’s up to you. But with a combination of coconut, chocolate, and buttery digestives, you can understand why they are called Dream Bars! Ingredients: 12 oz (or 340 grams) chocolate chips 1 cup chopped walnuts 4 oz (or 113 grams) sweetened coconut 1 can Eagle’s Brand condensed milk 1.5 cups crushed graham crackers (or Digestive biscuits) 1 stick of butter 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C) 2. Layer crushed biscuits along the bottom of a 9 x 11 pan and cover with melted butter 3. Sprinkle coconut on top, followed by chocolate chips 4. Drizzle condensed milk over the top, followed by chopped walnuts 5. Bake for 20-25 minutes 6. Allow to cool completely before cutting and serving!


Sophisticated: Port Wine Brownies with Raspberry Chocolate Sauce Kristy McDonough What’s more of a guilty pleasure than wine and chocolate! The addition of the port wine to this Brownie recipe will most definitely impress your friends and also lends for a more sophisticated chocolate flavor. These brownies are dense and cake-like, making them a perfect base for your Brownie Sundae. Enjoy with the gals on your ladies night in, or serve as a perfect ending of a spectacular dinner party! Ingredients For Brownies: 3/4 cup (177ml) Canola Oil 1 1/2 cup (340g) Sugar 1/2 cup (118ml) Port Wine 2 Eggs 1 teaspoon Vanilla 1 1/2 (340g) cups flour 3/4 cups (170g) cocoa powder 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder.

Ingredients for Raspberry Chocolate Sauce: 3/4 cup (170g) Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips 1/4 cup (40ml) Heavy Cream 1/2 cup (113g) Frozen Raspberries, thawed to room temperature.

1. Preheat oven to 350 F/175 C and grease a glass 8 x 8 inch square baking pan. 2. Combine oil and sugar in large bowl. Stir in wine and vanilla. Add eggs one at a time, until well combined. Set bowl aside. 3. In smaller bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder and baking powder. Add flour mixtures to sugar mixture. Mix until smooth. 4. Poor batter into greased pan and bake for 40-45 minutes. Let cool for 20 minutes before cutting. Yield: 9 Brownies. 5. While Brownies cool, melt chocolate chips in double boiler over medium heat, stirring frequently to prevent burning. 6. Once melted, add cream and stir continuously until well incorporated. Lastly stir in Raspberries, smashing berries with the back to your spoon to release juices. 7. Top your brownie with a heaping scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream, warm Raspberry Chocolate Sauce and Garnish with Raspberries.

Issue 1 April 2011


Food & Drink

Cocktails Work hard and then play hard. That’s the rule my father always taught me and it’s a motto I think everyone should live by. Happy hours were created for a reason, right? So this Friday when six o’clock rolls around, log out of your work email, silence your BlackBerry, and head over to Soho for the best cocktails in town. Located on 12 Old Compton Road near Leicester Square, the London Academy of Bartenders hosts the perfect showcase for every liquid libation you could possibly imagine. From martinis to mojitos, Jack Daniels to Tom Collins, these talented men have got you covered. Besides, the only thing better than a good, stiff drink is when it’s served by a hot bartender. A few suggestions to get your weekend started on the right foot.

Not so Chav-y

Porn Star Martini Spiced Shizzle

Diplimatico Exclusiva Rum with a touch of blackberry pure and crème de mure served with Perrier Jouët.

(with a name like that, you know you’re in for a treat) An orgy of exciting flavors, Cariel vanilla vodka & Passo double-teamed with passion fruit puree and vanilla sugar. Served straight up with a side of champagne.


Green Island spiced rum crushed together with fresh orange pieces, Goldschlager and maple syrup. Shizzled with a Cherry Heering float.

Have an interesting fact to share? Send it our way! `

Redemption The go-to guide for all the trivial tidbits needed to sound like a smarty pants on every occasion. Did You Know? Winston Churchill served as Prime Minister twice (1940-45 and 1951-55). No word in the English language rhymes with month. In 1896 the war between Zanzibar and England lasted 45 minutes. Zanzibar surrendered. In the 1700s in Paris, women wore hats with lightning rods attached when venturing outdoors during bad weather. Many traffic lights and elevator buttons are actually placebo buttons – in other words, they do nothing at all when pressed. They exist to give the presser the feeling of control. Sir William Paterson, founder of the Bank of England, is suspected to have been a pirate in his years before founding the bank. Apples are more efficient than caffeine in keeping people awake in the mornings. In gambling dens in the 18th century, there was a person who was hired solely to swallow the dice in the event of a police raid. Pablo Picasso’s full name was “Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Martyr Patricio Clito Ruiz y Picasso.”

Important societal figures:

Issue 1 April 2011


Guilty Pleasure Magazine  

Low brow culture for the high brow crowd. A free new publication for your enjoyment. It reads like a book, but looks like a magazine and is...