Friday, January 29, 2010

Agyness Wasn't There, but Otherwise No Complaints

Last night, the Empress, the Gazelle and I attended the PR event on the occasion of the presentation of La Redoute's summer collection.
la redoute invite (onemorehandbag)

Agyness Deyn, who is the testimonial of the Paule Ka collection was not there, but a sample sale of the A/W collection was. The Gazelle in particular had the perfect "sample size" and ended up with 5 items, but I can't complain either. There were standard prices, such as EUR 20 for all jumpers and skirts and EUR 30 for all jackets and cardigans. Well, yours truly bagged a caramel coloured leather jacket for exactly this price.

new leather jacket (onemorehandbag) Not bad, eh? In the background is the "discrete" white bag we took the booty home in. Oh, and I'm also wearing the new skinny jeans I bought on Tuesday.
My delight with the bargain was further increased when I leafed through the autumn/winter calogue and discovered the original price -yesss!

bargain! (onemorehandbag)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


As you might have gathered by now, I really like taking pictures. In the last years, I've used selected photos for calendars which I give to a handful of people. This is my 2010 selection:
Jan-Jun (onemorehandbag)January to June
Jul-Dec (onemorehandbag)July - December

Now I don't delude myself that I am a brilliant photographer or that the quality of my photos is extraordinary, but I simply love taking photos and I do think I have an eye for detail (hence my love for close-ups).

I have enjoyed taking pictures since I was a child, because my Dad took really good pictures and sometimes let me help develop black and white prints at home. When we were on a family holiday in Ireland when I was six years old, I pretended to take pictures with the case of Dad's camera and mimicked him whenever he got out of the car to capture something.

I can't remember how old I was when I got my first camera, but I was in my teens when I got a proper SLR. I was really proud and experimented a lot with it. What really annoyed me though was the size of the camera and the way you could not really be as spontaneous with it as I would have liked. I've been taking photos with small compact cameras ever since.

Sure, it's a compromise and the quality will never get near that of a "proper" camera with expensive lenses and zooms, but for me it's important to be able to have a camera with me at all time (you never know!) and be able to take a picture before the subject or object disappears. I also like the challenge of achieving decent photos with an average camera and although they are famous for watches rather than cameras, I really like the Casio brand and am now using the third one in a row (Exilim EX-H10). By the way, I recently bought a stylish Burberry case for it, ahem.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Yes, Ma'am!

Good-natured and obedient person that I am, I had to obey the Empress's orders and get the boots that she had also had her eyes on but as they were too loose on her calves - not exactly a dilemma that I am often faced with- did not buy. "You MUST buy them", she insisted. "They are SO cool! And 50% off". I tried them on on Friday, but reasoned with myself (having just bought the gorgeous grey Coccinelle bag the previous day) at first that they were more or less black and I did own two pairs of black boots, one of which I wore a lot and one I hardly ever wore because the heel was too high for my comfort. I did however return there on Monday, wearing a skirt, just to see what they looked like paired with a skirt. Well and guess what - on second thought, they appeared more granite grey than black and what with the fancy elastic detail were, like, totally different. Deal!

Tardi's boots (onemorehandbag) Today, the Gazelle and I went to Peek & Cloppenburg in our lunch-break, armed with a €10 voucher each which the nice and thoughtful people of P&C had sent us (yep, easy marketing prey and all that...) and the plan was to have a look at knitted dresses or long tops. What I ended up buying was a pair of skinny Pepe jeans (style "thirty-seven" if you are curious) that came with a feather key-fob (?) to match the feather stitching on the back pockets and waistband and which are just crying out to be paired with the boots. Don't you agree?
73 Pepe Jeans (onemorehandbag)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Really, I Should Recycle Last Year's Title

Same situation, fog-wise as when I last skied at Unterberg, the lovely retro ski "resort", a mere hour's drive from Vienna.

When you park your car, you board an old bus with snow chains on the tyres that takes you further up the mountain to the lifts:

Unterberg bus (onemorehandbag) On some of the slopes, the fog was still pretty dense and it was just as well that the PP's sister (in the picture below) and I wore such bright anoraks:
The very peak of Unterberg offered blue skies and a view of the "fog blanket" in the valley:

Unfortunately, there were neither benches, nor restaurants in the sunny spots which meant that we had to opt for an indoor-lunch as the temperatures were not exactly inviting in the shade and fog.
The (all natural) snow was just perfect!
All pictures taken with my phone - the blue skies would have made you even more jealous with a good camera...

Morbid Saturday

On Saturday, MC and I went for a walk in...a cemetery. Well, not ANY cemetery, but the one and only Zentralfriedhof, immortalised in Wolfgang Ambros' famous (nationally anyway) song and visited by groups of Japanese tourists who want to see the last resting place of famous composers.
You don't know the song? Well, here it is:

Despite the bitter cold, it was a good destination for a winter walk:
Zentralfriedhof (onemorehandbag) Carl Ritter von Ghega, just one of the many V.I.P.s
Zentralfriedhof (onemorehandbag) Jesus was a bit snotty...
Zentralfriedhof (onemorehandbag) MC with her cute hat (hiding her new haircut)

Zentralfriedhof (onemorehandbag)Karl Borromäus Church (architect Max Hegele)

Zentralfriedhof (onemorehandbag) Outdoing the neighbours continues in the afterlife

Zentralfriedhof (onemorehandbag)We did not try them, but the sign (it's an old-fashioned expression for "toilets") looked very dignified.

Friday, January 22, 2010


To me, shopping (and above all, bag shopping) is all about the hunt and adrenaline rush. Which is probably why I find it frustrating that really upmarket stores like LV or Hermès never have a sale on. What's the point if you can't make a bargain, eh?
When I came back to Vienna after Christmas, the sales had already begun at Vienna's more or less only department store deserving this name, Steffl. I went there in my lunch-break with the Empress and immediately fell in love with a grey (and as we all know, grey is the new black) Coccinelle bag. Like most of the bags, it was 30% off and still pretty expensive. My Mum, who was in Vienna at the time as well, and on the look-out for a birthday present for me, saw it as well and immediately thought I might like it. As her pain threshold regarding prices of bags is lower than mine and she was not 100% sure I'd want it, she didn't get it, though. I, however, really coveted the bag and could not get it out of my mind, but knew that Steffl tend to further reduce their prices and chances were that I might get it for 50% off, provided someone did not snatch it away from me. The next day, I went back to admire it once more and resolve to be patient. Incidentally, my Mum went back to the shop as well, but did not find it as they had re-arranged stock.
Some days later, the bag was sold and they only had the bigger size, still for only 30% off. I was disappointed that my strategy hadn't paid off and began some online research only to find out I could not find any shop selling the desired style in grey. Bummer.
Last night, I needed some retail therapy kick and decided to go to Steffl as my dear colleagues didn't let me sratch my itch at Tiffany's. There, the bag's bigger sister was waiting for me, the price 50% off. Oh, the adrenaline rush!
After some deliberation in view of other (cheaper) grey Coccinelle bags, I got it. It's LOVE and every single colleague (including men) had to worship at the altar of the grey Coccinelle today:
coccinelle stripe (onemorehandbag) The Chanel-esque cardigan in the back is a Promod bargain for € 9,90 I got earlier this week.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Diarrhoea Is the New Black

Well, if you live in Japan anyway. As so often, made my day!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Oh la la!

We currently have a visitor from our Paris office here who came bearing gifts. Macarons that truly give La Duree's offerings a run for their money. Seriously, we were rolling our eyes heavenwards, they are that good:
macarons (onemorehandbag)

If you want to enjoy some cyber-macarons yourself (unless you live in France), Pierre Hermé has a website. They also ship Europe-wide, but the shipping fees are somewhat obscene.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


When I dropped by @ Frida's on Saturday night, I was surprised by a Japanese style dinner and themed table decorations. The homemade maki looked like the real thing:
maki (onemorehandbag)

Monday, January 18, 2010

The End is Near

When my plan to go skiing on Saturday fell flat because my company got sick, I decided to inspect the famous Hohe Wand Wiese in Vienna (!) instead. I went there with Mademoiselle (both of us sans ski) in order to find out whether it was a) worth it and b) going there by public transport was feasible. The latter is an unconditional "yes", but the solitary slope is definitely for children or beginners only. Standing in front of the lift and slope, you can't really make out if there is more hill further up or if this is it.
Hohe Wand Wiese (onemorehandbag) click to enlarge

I asked a man in ski gear if the lift went further up than one could see. He said it was his first time there and he was not sure, but supposed it did. I eventually queued up at the ticket counter to ask and had my suspicions confirmed: there was not more than met the eye...

Friday, January 15, 2010

A Sweet Place and Even Sweeter Gifts

Last Saturday, when Chiquita and I were on our way to sampe blueorange's matcha latte, we passed a cute little tearoom that looked so cosy and inviting, I decided to try it out soon:
Süssi (onemorehandbag) Last night, I met the Prefab Babe (PB) and since she works in the same district and is an anglophile as well, I suggested the tea room, aptly called Süssi because apart from Mariage Frères teas in many different flavours, they are all about incredibly sinful looking sweets:
more Süssi (onemorehandbag) With my yuzu temple tea (very good), I had "cashew caramel" and PB "macadamia caramel", which quite to my surprise were served warm. They also have cakes, macarons and ice cream.

even more Süssi (onemorehandbag)We were the only customers, but the waiter did not seem too eager to "pitch": we were there for 2 hours and he discreetly kept to the background, not asking us if we'd like something else. Well, probably he knows that people fall into a sugar-induced coma after finishing their desserts and become too lethargic to think about more tea. When he cleared our table, he accidentally wiped off the ornate potpourri holder (an identical twin of the one above) on the neighbouring table, which promptly broke into several pieces. I don't know if this is a regular occurence, but the friend I had lunch with today told me that when she and her husband were there the waiter also broke something. Hmmm. I hope they have good connections to antiques stores to stock up on replacement knick-knack.
All in all, it was a really original place, but it felt a bit strange to be the only guests.
The REAL highlight of the evening was the PB's super-cool gifts, a belated Christmas (shame! I had none for her) and an early birthday pressie, cellotaped inside a self-made card:
aren't you jealous? (onemorehandbag) The item on the left is a (hand-knitted) orange pot-holder to go with the orange theme in my living room and the coin purse (click to enlarge) reads "Oh God, I'm so bloody blonde sometimes". LOVE it! Does anyone have any suggestions what I could use such a small purse for, other than the obvious coins? I really want to show it off, but only tend to use separate wallets for change when on vacation and have a mini cosmetics bag I really like. Comments welcome!

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Every single one of the YT beauty gurus seems to rave about OPI. This brand is quite hard to get in Austria and so I bought a bottle in "Done out in Deco" (the names of all the colours are quite original) from an eBay store (on Tuesday and it arrived today already, yeah!) to see what the hype was all about.
OPI Done out in Deco (onemorehandbag) I have to say that I am very impressed. Glides on beautifully, dries super-quickly and is so shiny you don't need a top coat. Not bad at all for the € 12,90 I paid. Actually, my recent Chanel nail polish purchase which cost € 10 more than this one is rather streaky and I sort of regret buying it.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

One More Crafts Project

...with Japanese fabric: Japanese-style tissue cases:tissue case (onemorehandbag)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Temptation, Thy Name is Happy Cola

The Empress generously donated a huge tub of fizzy cola bottles - among the favourite sweets of my youth. They were sold at our school canteen by the Mermaid's uncle, Mr. K., and cost ATS 1,- back then. Nostalgia!
Haribo Happy Cola (onemorehandbag)

The photo was taken this morning...the total number is far from 100 now. I've actually only eaten 3 in the course of today, but it feels like 30. Apparently my younger self was more resistant to E numbers...

Monday, January 11, 2010


Like every January, I am fiercely determined to clear out some of the stuff that has accumulated in my drawers, wardrobes and shelves. It is really liberating and I hope this phase will last a bit. On Friday night, I unearthed "skeletons" such as a folder containing all application-for-leave forms from my time at Coma HQ. Hel-lo? What was I thinking?

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Another Viennese Matcha Latte Experience

Thanks to a tip by FCN/BoB, I knew that blueorange were now doing matcha lattes. Yeah! Being both impatient and curious, I had to try it asap and therefore braved the journey through the rain, Chiquita in tow. Our verdict: not bad, but much to sweet even though we had the original, not the white chocolate variety (I don't want to imagine how sweet that one is).

matcha latte @ blueorange (onemorehandbag)Until some other places (Starbucks people, pleeeeease ask your Japanese barista colleagues to teach you the trick!) start offering the real deal, I'll either go to Cha No Ma when the urge strikes me or make it myself. With the 2 tins I imported from Japan plus another 2 I got as Christmas presents, I have plenty of raw material:
my matcha stash (onemorehandbag)Another place that has something they chose to call "matcha latte" on their menu is Freiraum, by the way. It was also really sweet and the white foam seemed not to be milk or soy milk, but rather aerosol cream. Bizarre.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

More White...

Last night, I walked from the office in Vienna's first district to Mariahilferstraße. In the absence of cars to turn the snow into an ugly brown slush, Maria-Theresien-Platz looked really beautiful:
more snow (onemorehandbag)Why did I go to Mariahilfer Str.? Well, I'd seen a nail polish in the KLU branch of Müller (other shops did not stock it) which I had to have and therefore hoped to be able to grab one in Vienna. Result!
chanel intermezzo nail polish (onemorehandbag)Does it also annoy you that brands like Chanel, YSL and Dior always put that square extra lid on top of the screwtop? A total waste of material in my opinion and quite an environmental sin!

Not having worn it for years, I dug out a DKNY bag (bought in the sale absolutely ages ago, in fact I think it was my first ever "expensive brand" bag). I'd convinced myself that "Speedy"-style bags with short handles weren't really my thing, but now I have fallen back in love with it:
dkny bag (onemorehandbag)

Friday, January 08, 2010

DIY Queen!

Wow, who would have thought...

Every year, selected people who (at least convincingly pretend to) appreciate them, get photo calendars from me for Christmas, or, if their birthdays are in January, for their birthdays. After once having them professionally printed, I resorted back to my trusty Canon Pixma ip 4000 which has always yielded brilliant results. Until tonight when I wanted to print out the January batch. A nasty greenish hue. I tried another picture. Bleurgh. I checked the USB ports, removed and inserted all cartridges, suspecting the "magenta" in particular to have misbehaved. Still green.

Doing a bit of research in the wide, wide web, I learnt that unless it has something today with an outdated driver (nope) or wrongly inserted cartridges (nope), it was probably a case of congested printer heads. With little trust in the miracles I would work, I removed the cartridges and painstakingly cleaned the printer heads and contacts with q-tips and alcohol. And lo and hehold:

before and after (onemorehandbag)It actually worked! Excuse me now - I will spend the rest of the night patting my back...

Supersize Me

extra large! (onemorehandbag) Today, I bought a down vest. A while back, I had bought a tight-fitting stretchy denim jacket (CK, in case you were interested) which was the perfect excuse to complement it with a quilted vest. Yes, that's exactly how a shopaholic's mind works. Anyway, I had had my eye on Blaumax's range for a while, but wanted to wait for the sale. Yesterday, I went into a branch and saw that they were 50% - bingo! As the shop assistant was talking to another customer, I helped myself to the pile and dug out one in my usual size "S".
Now everyone who knows me in person knows that I am no size 0 waif and I certainly don't have delusions to this effect. It's just that 95% of the time, my size for tops is "small" (the only problem being short-sleeved blouses as I really have sumo wrestler's upper arms, but that's another story). Even in Japan size "M" fit me just fine.
Not so with that vest. When I had it on, there was a 10 cm gap (I'm not exaggerating here) between the two zippered halves. Okaaaay. The shop assistant saw my frown and said "Yeah, these are a really small cut. I think you'll need the XL". As in: extra large. As in: the largest size they came in. As - not surprisingly - they were completely out of Ls and XLs, she rang another branch nearby which actually had "the last blue XL in the whole of Austria". Once there, I also tried on the "L" and for the record, I could have worn it without bursting the seams or being charged for indecent behaviour, but then decided to go for the larger size which fits me just fine. Oh, and no, I did not put on weight (surprisingly enough) after all that food over Christmas and therefore have "upgraded" 4 dress-sizes in the course of 2 weeks.
Was there a mix-up at the Chinese factory? Who knows... But should Paris Hilton or Nichole Richie be in desperate need of quilted vests for € 49, I have a hot tip for them: sizes "S" and "M" are still available in all colours...

Thursday, January 07, 2010


Yesterday's snow rewarded city dwellers with nice fresh air and pristine white, provided they went to places like Schönbrunn:

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

A Double-Blast from the (Japanese) Past

On top of all the other positive impressions of my visit to Japan, I was truly wowed by its polite citizens. Interestingly enough - and this excludes my Japanese friends here in Vienna - this seemed to be restricted to strangers. Let me explain. Before flying there, I got in touch with a colleague at the Firm's Tokyo branch who like me had volunteered to occasionally entertain visitors from other offices. We arranged that Chiquita and myself would drop by at the office on our last night which coincided with a Halloween party there. Unfortunately, though, the colleague was really stressed and once it was obvious she had to stay in the office until very late and would not really have time, nor the engergy to meet for a drink later, we said our good-byes and I left a gift there. That was the last time I heard from her.
Earlier the same day, I finally posted a present for my former bosses at Coma HQ, who are now a married couple. Inexplicably and despite the computer-typed address in Japanese characters, the person behind the counter at the post office in Ueno signalled that he had no clue what I wanted him to do with my padded envelope. After much pointing at myself and then at the "sender" address on the envelope followed by pointing at the recipient's address and making a forward motion with my hands, I hoped he had understood that my highly unusual request was to - gasp- post this item. I the post office, of all places. Anyway, when I heard no word of thanks from my former bosses (and those were nice gifts, mainly for their newborn son), I was convinced that the guy had either sent it to his grandmother or fed it to the shredder. I thought it very out of character for them not to show a reaction of some kind and was rather tempted to write to ask directly whether they had received any post from me.
Yesterday, however, I was surprised by a FedExed t-shirt (really cool, with the Firm's logo spelt in pseudo-Japanese) and card from my colleague, apologising for not having had time to properly entertain me when I was in Japan.
When I got home, a New Year's card from my ex-bosses was waiting for me, on which they thanked me for my gifts.
Just like the mortal offence not to send a "thank you" card in the UK or US which is an alien concept for most Europeans, it is obviously not required for Japanese people to acknowledge gifts upon receipt. Well, I knew that the gift-giver must not make a fuss and hand over their offerings as if they were completely worthless, but I had actually expected the recipient to show more enthusiasm, given their profuse thanks for mundane daily transactions like paying for groceries. Must do research on that!
In any case, I was relieved to finally find out that my envelope had reached its destination.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Uploaded: Matcha Cookies Tutorial

Sunday, January 03, 2010


holiday blues (onemorehandbag)

Saturday, January 02, 2010

One More "Fogscape": Magdalensberg

Yesterday's digestive walk led us to Magdalensberg, a safe bet for fog-free walks. It was not as sunny (any more), but still offered pretty impressive views:
Magdalensberg1 (onemorehandbag) Like islands in a pool filled with cotton wool:
Magdalensberg2 (onemorehandbag) Idyll..
Magdalensberg3 (onemorehandbag)The original plan for today was to go skiing, but as it's foggy and snowing (or raining) on the mountain tops as well today, we're going to make a little excursion to the IT/SLO/AT border triangle instead.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Somewhere Over the

Vienna is known for its wind, Salzburg for its rain and Klagenfurt for its fog. My Mum, whose middle name should be "Spaziergang" (walk) likes to escape the ground fog by driving to nearby Radsberg/Radiše. Like yesterday. When we parked the car, we were just above fog level:
fog (onemorehandbag) The fog looked almost like an impenetrable wall:
more fog (onemorehandbag) But just a few metres higher up, the sun made a very welcome guest appearance:
fog lifting (onemorehandbag)
Marterl (onemorehandbag)Afterwards we drove back to the foggy basin of KLU, which was getting even more opaque in the course of the night with the by-products of the bangers and firecrackers ignited by our martial neighbours.
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