Thursday, May 11, 2006

illovo lament


illovo1
Originally uploaded by peas on toast.
So I was reading through the latest Marie Claire. The one with the formidable Mrs Demi Kutcher on the front. There’s a pull-out box on page 9 I think it is, displaying a new collection of Louis Vuitton luggage. It’s called ‘Illovo.’

Louis Vuitton’s new handbag line is named after the Johannesburg suburb of Illovo, because it impressed him so. That’s what it said.
Shut up, seriously?

I live in Illovo. The pretty side. The Dunkeld side, to be precise. My flat is positioned within walking distance of a pizzeria, a video shop, a Kung Fu Kitchen, a corner café, a 7/11, a bottle store, a bike shop (convenient if I want to buy a Vespa), the Wanderer’s cricket stadium, a nut wholesaler, a dance studio, a key cutsmith (?), a Greek restaurant. Convenience doesn’t get much better than this, especially in a city where nobody walks.

When I first arrived in Johannesburg as an impressionable graduate refugee fresh from Cape Town, I knew nothing about this big, bad city and moved straight into a box in Fourways. I had to get into my car and drive 2 kilometres alongside indistinguishable Tuscan villas and car dealerships just to buy milk.

So you can imagine how happy I am now. There’s something extremely rare about being able to stumble home across the road after too many ouzos. So I love living where I do, it has essentially made me fall in love with Jozi.

But name a handbag line after my suburb? There are prettier suburbs in Joburg that’s for sure. When did Mr Vuitton visit anyhow? Was he driving through? Yelling at his chauffeur, “Arretez Winston! Sacre bleu! This. Place. Is. Incredible. I haven’t been so inspired since the day I first laid eyes on the Champs Elysees. This long row of apartment blocks juxtaposed with a traffic circle is quite fucking exquisite. I’m going to name my 2006 winter collection after this suburb.”

If you have to name your new range after a Joburg suburb, Illovo isn’t the first place to spring to mind. It’s a little random to say the least.
It just makes more sense for a handbag guru guy to name his new line ‘Louis Vuitton Saxonwold’, or ‘Louis Vuitton Parkhurst’, or even ‘Louis Vuitton Houghton’. People living in these plush, tree-lined suburbs are his target market afterall.

But bless his little cotton draws for choosing Illovo. It may be split by a busy prostitute-smattering, taxi scourging Oxford Road; it may have a large number of law firms plonked in the middle; it may even have a strange Rasta guy living on the traffic island intersecting Corlett and Bompas. It may not be the most glamourous place in the world, but I am really quite fond of it. Thanks for choosing it, Lou. Biggie up.

50 comments:

Suavé said...

Biggie ups indeed. I have no idea about the fashion world what so ever but in my two years of living in Joburg I've come to realise that the ever present LV handbag is quite a status symbol from what I can gather. And to be honest Illovo doesnt impress me that much either. Anyway, who are we to say? Its not like we are the one's with the multi-million dollar company to run. I can just see the koegels of Joburg just going crazy with their new LV Illovo range bags. What a city to live in!

daytripper said...

I can see it now, an international fashion trend: Levi's Yeoville range, for that "street" feel

Yves Saint Laurent's "Sandton" for men's yuppy suits,

Chanel's "Wallet Fucker" for a new line of perfume aimed at upwardly mobile urban females....

Peas on Toast said...

Suavebona - I wonder whether the new Illovo range is being sold at the store in Sandton City? At R10 000 a pop (I think?) those kug's out there must be going ape. :) Also, I wonder if the guys at the Oriental PLaza have caught on with some fakes. 'Louis Vuiton Ilovvo/Irrovo/Illvo, etc.

Daytripper - LOL. Or LV Hillbrow. Comes with a free bag of crack. Or LV Booysens. Comes with free tow truck driver.

GoDsGiMp said...

Pea's glad to hear you got naturally lumpy breats..

I don't understand the whole handbag thing. Although recently I have been using what people call a man-bag. Cause got tired of carrying two sets of keys, radio face, prescription glasses, sun glasses, cellphone, wallet etc etc. Anyway it gets laughed at quite a bit. So tell me in your noted opinion. Are man-bags a no no?

Maybe the illovo line of handbags comes with a trendy handcuff to prevent ir being snatched like everything else in joburg.

Peas on Toast said...

Godsgimp - I must just say that my boobs don't look lumpy. I imagine that you are all envisioning my Lucky Twos as decidedly bumpy. :)

OK and as for the man bag. What does it look like? A lady's handbag, or an over the shoulder/torso thingiemajig? As long as it's not a moonbag/fanny pack (!) (gotta love the American description) you should be ok. :)

GoDsGiMp said...

Fortunately its an over the shoulder kinda thing. So my manhood remains intact and I continue to survive in Cape Town without being hit on by men.

Peas on Toast said...

Godsgimp - it sounds like a perfectly good manbag to me. If you do get hit on by someone (and the probability is higher in CT than here), then ditch the bag and buy a briefcase :)

GoDsGiMp said...

A briefcase... O my.. I am not old enough for that. Anyway going out in old school t-shirt stained with old beer, smelling suspicously like banned substances and carrying a briefcase..

Peas on Toast said...

That is a pretty picture indeed. :)

Philip said...

Hey - I spent six months living in "Merrow Down" in that area. Also enjoyed it greatly.
Scary to think it could inspire a handbag though!

Philip

Peas on Toast said...

Philip - the nice thing about Illovo is that it's central. Put a compas on JHB, and Illovo is your central point. But a handbag line seems a little farfetched.

Maybe he got laid in Illovo. And it was a particularly good shag. ;)

fly said...

One of the most dangerous things a man can do is buy a "man bag"...they are just so damn convenient that everything...and I mean everything gets chucked in there...just in case...

So inevitably you end up carrying around something akin to a hikers backpack and all you are doing is going to the mall or movies....I realised the mistake I made 6 months after purchasing one of these and went back to "if it cant be carried on me, then it doesnt come with scenario"....

Luckily cellphones and iPods are getting smaller (though I still only own the original 20gig) so everything is becoming easier to lug around...I still keep in mind the size of the pockets though when buying jeans...how sad is that.... ???

Illovo....its got a kick ass name....I dunno if thats what he was going for but it does have a certain ring to it...as for aspiration, I get more from Illovo, Melville or Yeoville than I will from Houghton or somewhere else in Sandton....theres nothing inspirational about 10 foot high walls and spikey gates....

Anonymous said...

Peas darling, if the shag was as good as you suggest - it inspired a whole range of handbags, sacre bleu - one can only hope she gave him a special Illovo discount...

fly said...

he shouldve named it Empire Str....I dig Empire Street for some reason...i love all the tagging... :oP

Peas on Toast said...

Fly - absolutely. If I was Monsieur Vuitton, I'd go for something more cosmopolitan (with a matching design) to the likes of Melville or Yeoville. For sure. But following his particular target market, I thought an old, regal suburb like Houghton would be more his taste than humble little Illovo.

Anon - she more than likely did. Have you seen the ladies of the night on Oxford Road? I drove past 6 last night coming in from Rosebank.

Peas on Toast said...

Fly - nice one, the corner of Jan Smuts and Enpire in particular.
Although these have nice rings as well:
7th Avenue (Melville)
Grant Avenue (Norwood)
4th Street (Parkhurst)
Rockey Street (Yeoville)
Westcliff Drive

Shit, the options are endless. Why on Earth would he choose Illovo?

fly said...

cos he is french and they dont need reasons :oP

Peas on Toast said...

No zey don't.

GoDsGiMp said...

Fly: You are right about carrying everything in there. You just got me to take a long look. I have unpaid bills in there from BC.

GoDsGiMp said...

Ps- Fly change to cargo's.. they have bigger pockets.

fly said...

@godsgimp....I tried but then everything bangs against my knees for some bizarre reason...plus it looks funny...

GoDsGiMp said...

Fly- are you saying I look funny... come say that over here..

:)

Slagella said...

Maybe because Illovo is the only uniquely SAfrican name in all the options suggested?

GoDsGiMp said...

Question do they make syrup in illovo?

Peas on Toast said...

Fly & Godsgimp - can't we all just get along? :)

Slagella - interesting and relevant suggestion there. YOu may be onto something.

Peas on Toast said...

Godsgimp - No. There is town called Illovo on the Natal south coast. That's where they make the syrup. :)

fly said...

@godsgimp......ok....so you have a manbag and you manage to fill all your pockets on your cargo's....gees dude what you carrying around with you.. ??? ... :oP

there are time when I will use my cargo pockets, buts its very rare...I shouldve rather said, "they looks funny on me cos I rarely use them"...but I digress... :oD

@Peas....why not write him and ask... ??? ...and maybe the bags are named after the little town in Natal...???

There goes a whole bunch of theories blown to shreds... :oD

Jam said...

"Louis Vuitton's new Illovo in the ever-chic Damier canvas is wonderfully functional with a spacious interior, full zip top, and snap-hook shoulder strap. Finished with fine terracotta lining and shiny golden brass hardware, a trendy new bag perfect for a casual everyday use."

"fine terracotta lining" - was he inspired by the plethora of Tuscan nasties in South Africa?? Nothing Illovo about that.

Peas on Toast said...

Fly - Fraid not china. The pull-out box said he was impressed with the 'Johannesburg suburb of Illovo.'

fly said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
GoDsGiMp said...

And here I thought he was impressed with the quality of our fine syrup

Peas on Toast said...

Jam - you're brilliant. That was the description I couldn't find this morning when trying to find the magazine to scan the article onto my blog.
And strange yes. There is nothing Tuscan about Illovo, which is rather refreshing in itself. Perhaps its all the 70s style face brick? Which is endearing in its own ugly little way.

Peas on Toast said...

Godsgimp - pipped by maple. If he's had Canada's finest - which I'm sure his jetsetter lifestyle has allowed - Illovo syrup just doesn't cut it, unfortunately.
Although I use Illovo generously at home for pancakes. On the odd occasion I make them. :)

GoDsGiMp said...

-comment deleted-
Im consumed by curiosity. What did it say..
Anyone else?

fly said...

lol@godsgimp...

Peas beat me to the punch...as I refreshed, she had already answered my question.... :-?

you would think blogger would hide such embarrasing moments but alas it did not...hehehehe

Peas on Toast said...

Godsgimp and fly - perhaps my PC is on future time.

Jam said...

google.
:-)

peanut said...

HELP!
I'm sorry to interrupt the conversation but i'm having a bit of a shoe crisis and thought you guys would be the best to ask.
I took my brand new nine west stilettos (black and pointy, make my legs look good and my feet even better) to shoe guy to have them stretched, and he BROKE them!
The top of the shoe (by the toes) is TORN!I have gone to 3 shoe repair places and they all say they can't help.
Please tell me someone out there knows a great shoe place in JHB!
please, I am heart broken and break down sobbing everytime I think about it!!

Jam said...

peanut - the shoe guy should be refunding you for the full amount!!!!

peanut said...

No, he has all these lovely disclaimers around. Although he said "I told you it would happen" !! Like i would have left them there if he had!!!
i ripped his head off and told him what a freaking toss he is. He offered to fix them but i said i would take them to someone who knew what he was doing.
Now i can't find anyone and feel a bit too skaam to go back!!!
It is a tragedy.
Sob.

Peas on Toast said...

Peanut - this is a catastrophe. The guy should be tarred and feathered for ruining your shoes. Nine West shoes are nothing to be laughed at - he should've respected them.
Bastard!
The shoe repair man has GOT to refund you for breaking them. Has to. Have you got your receipt? Don't go down without a fight, this is shoes we are talking about afterall. Then buy yourself some new ones. Demand the refund - do it today!

Peas on Toast said...

OK, didn't read your previous comment.

Fack. You have a problem on your hands.
But he should at least fix them for free. Go back, but don't hang your head. Still be as angry as before, it'll help you save face.
Burst in there and demand he fix them. Pretend the last conversation he had with you is null and void. Do it for the shoes. Shoes are that important.

Jam said...

I'd be seriously concerned that he may mess the shoes up even more...if he was able to fix them, he could have done this in the first place. And then your shoes will be completely unsaveable...poor shoes, poor legs, poor feet.

fly said...

That or cry and put him on the biggest guilt trip he'll ever experience....

I used to work in retail....you dont want the guy to do the job grudgingly cos he'll screw it up just to spite you...

Peas on Toast said...

Fly - good advice. The little fucker must'nt mess them up more.
I suggest looking in the good old Yellow Pages, phone around, explain the situation and get someone professional to do it.

peanut said...

Ok, thanks for the help guys. I'll have a look int he big yellow book.
I so frustrating as I've been so looking forward to waering them. But I have already decided that I am going to buy a new pair anyway, as I deserve it after all the trauma, credit card be damned!!!

Peas on Toast said...

Peanut - you don't need an excuse to buy new shoes. Ever. Ever. Ever.
That's my philosophy and it's always worked for me. :)

Suavé said...

I have no comment about the shoes. You girls do your thang!

PS - Nice blog too.

barbedwire said...

Tsk, so this is what I've been missing out on by not visiting more often - quite the funniest thing I've read in ages. Biggie up, Peas!

Peas on Toast said...

Thanks Barb! Nice to see you're back. :)