As 2015 draws to a close, we present our observations and predictions for the year ahead
The sequins are out, the champagne is chilling, and the hour is edging steadily closer for us to put 2015 to bed. New Years Eve lends itself, more than any other occasion, to a moment of pensive reflection on the past 365 days – last year we encouraged you to find alternatives to copious amounts of prosecco and avocado consumption, and filling your house with cacti. Perhaps more pressingly, though, the arrival of a new one calls for predictions – of which we at AnOther have plenty.
As the final few moments pass, then, contributing editor Laura Bradley presents her meditation on the year gone by: from those ephemeral fads we’re sending to the guillotine, to the au courant customs we’ll be embracing over the next 12 months. Hello, 2016!
The C Word
It’s catchy and does a job like no other. Chic has been brilliant, perfectly describing something that is luxury, tasteful, elegant etc. At AnOther, we’ve loved it more than most, but now comes the time to let it go. “It belongs in the sin bin,” says AnOthermag.com editor Natalie Rigg. In the past few months, it seems everyone’s on it – particularly PRs pushing less-than-average products – and in November, the Financial Times published a letter of complaint about use of the word ‘chicest’. Let’s give it a rest, along with ‘millennials’ and ‘cool’. My new favourite? Modern.
Hashtags are great, but there’s a time and a place. Too many on a post only sniffs of desperation. Look to one of our favourite Instagram accounts @ideabooksltd for examples of hashtag best practice – less is certainly more. But the most irritating hashtag activity has to be the increasing use of hashtags that mean nothing, particularly by fashion brands. Sticking a hashtag in front of a word does not make something a good idea, nor a credible trend.
The web has been awash with Wes Anderson-mania for the past few years. Wes facts, Wes palettes, Wes lists, Wes cafes, Wes-inspired photography. Yes, he and his movies are fabulous, but as one of the most documented cultural icons of all time, do we really need anymore? Internet, let’s take a Wes break.
Facebook Events = Dislike
Facebook events are over. “Nobody takes their social engagements seriously anymore, and cancelling at the drop of a hat has become too commonplace,” says AnOther’s assistant editor Maisie Skidmore. “I predict the return of the handwritten invitation and a more considered approach to attendance.” Fountain pens at the ready...
We love Instagram, but increasingly accounts are starting to look the same. Last year, we focused on the abundance of visual metaphors, and there still way too many. We all know what a Monday/Friday/Sunday feels like – we don’t need a vintage picture to show it (the king of visual metaphors, @raven_smith, is excluded from this). We all need to work harder. Focus on taking quality pictures and writing excellent captions. @palaceskateboards, you rule.
It’s been on the cards for a few years, but Shoreditch has definitely lost all of its integrity. All of the smaller, independent bars and restaurants have now been priced out, which has resulted in a fresh resurgence in nearby neighbourhoods. Haggerston and Dalston are particularly interesting areas at this current time, with the addition of Berber & Q and Jidori symbols of the shifting landscape of London’s food and drink scene.
Brilliant Beauty Decisions
The beauty industry of today is more exciting than ever, with countless beauty brands excelling in both their product offering and digital marketing – from Instagram posts to newsletters, to user reviews and marketing initiatives (@glossier, you win). The AnOther team is constantly on the search for beauty staples – current favourites include Davines OI shampoo and conditioner (“a game-changer”, says AnOthermag.com's fashion features editor Olivia Singer), Marvis toothpaste, Rodin hand cream and Natura Bisse Diamond Make-up Remover.
Eating In, Drinking Out
Deliveroo is quickly being introduced into more areas in London, offering customers a quick and easy service to experience the food of local restaurants in their own home. Wright Brothers South Kensington have recently introduced the option of ordering takeaway oysters, already shucked in boxes of 6 or 12. Embrace eating in, and invest in a great set of tableware and cutlery.
Drinking at home, however, is never really the same – go out and enjoy fine wines, which have become increasingly accessible in the capital. Expertly curated wine lists include Sager + Wilde and Ruby’s Bar & Lounge – opening January 2016, the list will be put together by local wine bar Verden.
The Ultimate Leather Jacket
2016 marks the 40th anniversary of Punk, and what better time to invest in your ultimate leather jacket? Phoebe Philo usually includes a brilliant biker jacket in each Céline offering, with which you certainly can’t go wrong. Alternatively, if you want to go for classic, opt for a bespoke Lewis Leathers.
The Celeriac Renaissance
The unassuming and rather unattractive vegetable has been making appearances on menus across London, and is set for big things in 2016 – from celeriac cooked in gallciian beef fat at Marylebone Peruvian restaurant Pachamama to the Grain Store’s buttermilk and sage pot roasted celeriac with cauliflower, and Poco’s mussels, celeriac milk, wild water celery, celery salt, fresh bay leaves.
Eco-decisions will become even more important in 2016. To coincide with COP21, Prada announced a plan to reduce their environmental impact, with newly defined Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives. A restaurant's sustainability and eco-credentials are becoming a much bigger factor in diners' decisions to choose where they go to eat with the likes of Bruno Loubet's Grain Store and Tom Hunt's Poco restaurants in Bristol and his recently opened second site on Broadway proving popular with eco-conscious diners. In place of plastic bags and bottles, invest in a good tote bag that you’ll enjoy using (we love IDEA Books bags) and a S’well water bottle in metallic gold or silver – keeps your drink hot or cold for 12 hours.
Use the holidays to take time to sort out your “toolkit” for modern, smart, organised living. Clear out any apps you no longer need – Citymapper, Evernote, Uber and Tripcase are ones that should definitely stay. Get a great notebook – Moleskine recently launched khaki beige versions which offer respite from the infamous black version (go softcover). Invest in a great travel bag – we recommend a navy Yoshida Head Porter, which is virtually impossible to get hold of in the UK – buy direct from their website.