Gisele the Gaelic Goddess

To complete theSkinnyStiletto‘s Irish week, we thought it’d be appropriate to review one of our favorite fashion/lifestyle books, The Goddess Guide, written by Gisele Scanlon.  Scanlon is Irish-bred and born (from Co. Kerry), who has written for Irish Tatler and The Irish Independent.  The beautiful book contains Scanlon’s tips, advice, interviews and pictures, collected in her own notebooks working as a fashion journalist.  (This editor asked for it for Christmas a couple of years ago, and it wasn’t even published stateside yet, so her father went to the British version of Amazon to track it down for me!)  To say the book is visually stunning is an understatement – it’s bound in the pattern of Scanlon’s favorite wallpaper (the black part is velvet!), includes her own doodles, lists and photos in the margins, and each page seems to be a different color and theme – keeping eyes dazzled for hours… literally.  (I sat down to reread it for this “Book Review” and nearly finished the entire thing in one sitting.)  Scanlon describes her six goddesses, the Home Goddess, Sex Goddess, Office Goddess, Earth Goddess, Urban Goddess, and the Luxurious Goddess, and how each side of her own personality has discovered helpful information for home, body, mind, and the shopping spirit.  Scanlon’s work is separated by the following sections: style, beauty, travel, home, garden, food, havin’ fun, joie de vivre, pillow talk and g-spots (Gisele’s favorite locations, not actual g-spots.)  The style and beauty chapters are the longest, chock full of useful recommendations on shopping, denim, cellulite, cashmere, purses, make-up, vintage-hunting, online stores, you name it.  The other sections are smaller, and not as detailed, but still have fun tips.  The book has been criticized, usually due to this.  Reviewers wondered what does gardening or how to wrap a present have to do with a style book?  But Scanlon never claimed it was strictly a journal on fashion – she stated in the beginning of the book she had tips “From the practical to the frivolous.”  While other critics may have disliked the non-beauty/fashion sections, I thought they were very helpful.  This editor lived abroad for a year, and she was quite regretful she didn’t take this lovely publication along to London, Dublin or Barcelona where Scanlon details the best places to eat, drink, shop, be merry, and even get sandals personally made!  (Definitely regretted that part.)  Her food section contains a recipe for Fat Duck Heston Blumenthal’s popping chocolate cake (Scanlon’s personal favorite).  This editor and her friends attempted to make it for Easter three years ago, and while we screwed up the base of the cake, the remainder of it was still one of the most delicious desserts I’ve ever had.  There are so many facts (like why Christian Louboutin’s stilettos are red underneath), and ideas (like various types of gifts to buy for people) throughout, this editor is positive she’ll be writing future articles on some of the subjects featured in The Goddess Guide.  Scanlon wrote a follow-up journal, The Goddess Experience (Goddess Guide II), which this editor will be tracking down, as well as a blog called The Goddess Guide.  In conclusion, Gisele Scanlon – you are definitely a Gaelic Goddess after our own hearts.

One thought on “Gisele the Gaelic Goddess

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