Brand “value”

Brand value

Often we salivate over what fabulously wealthy celebrities are wearing or carrying. Then we realise the closest we’ll ever get to them is in a photograph.

Burberry. Hugo Boss. Roberto Cavalli and many more. All selling their merchandise at a 50 to 80 percent discounted price.

This is not a dream sequence, which you have to unfortunately wake up from, it’s a reality and its situated about two hours away from central London.

Bicester village, a small pretty village located in Oxfordshire, is an easy train ride away from London and once you’re there dozens of high profile shops are at your disposal at Bicester outlet shopping center.

It isn’t a typical mall, it’s a street with cobbled floors and little shops all over the lanes and bylanes. It has an old world charm about it making the experience even better.

It is literally a haven for those aspiring to get big brands at cheaper rates.

“Its definitely worth the travel and the money, not only is it a shoppers paradise, its beautiful. Perfect for a day of fun!”- Ramya Menon

You may wonder why everything here is so much cheaper but many shops have “no tax” signs plastered all over them. The goods are probably last season but when you’re buying something that’s branded, it lasts you forever so all in all it’s a pretty good deal.

Then we come to celebrity aspirational value.

Public figures become fashion icons for many people, we want what they wear and we want to live the way they do. It has shops selling clothes, lingerie, jewelry, electronics,  shoes  and accessories

An outlet mall like this gives those people the opportunity to live like their favorite celebrity. You have something that connects you to them and a good buy makes a shopper really happy.

It’s perfectly possible for one to buy a Burberry bag in the 100 pound range or even a watch from Guess for the same amount.

You won’t get the service you get in an actual store, the merchandise may not be as prettily arranged and you have to dig deep and look hard but once you find something, it’s a real bargain.

I asked a visitor why she came all the way to Bicester and she said,” One in a while the travel is worth it because coming here having the opportunity to get goods at such a discounted price makes the celebrity lifestyle more attainable.” – Nimmy Chowdhary.

Christmas is around the corner and this place is perfect for a gift to make someone smile. What makes it even better is that more 130 brands have shops here which have at least a 60 percent discount all year round.


Opening times-

Mon- fri – 10 am-8pm

Saturday- 9 am-8pm

Sunday- 12 pm- 6pm

Published in: on December 4, 2010 at 11:41 am  Leave a Comment  
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Women in the media

Image courtesy- Ramya Menon

In the 21st century, we like to believe that a woman can do everything a man can do and can even do it better.

My journalism class has 40 students out of which only seven are male. Imagine my surprise when statistics showed to me that the number of male journalists is significantly higher than female journalists.

I don’t only mean in developing countries where women don’t have the same opportunities as men or have laws that restrict them from doing certain things. It’s an all over the world phenomenon.

The Global media monitoring report of 2010 that spans over a 110 countries, studying the media situation says that there is a higher number of women studying to be journalists but much less actually make it into work.

About 62 % percent of all journalists are male while only 38 % percent are female. We like to argue that women and men are equal but these statistics prove otherwise.

The reasons are many.

One is the glass ceiling that refers to an invisible barrier that prevents women and other minorities from climbing to the highest rung of corporate hierarchy.

This is de motivating as from the beginning a woman knows that no matter how hard she works this will be a barrier to her success.

Another is it’s difficult for a staunch feminist to get ahead in the male dominated media industry, if you have to succeed you have to become “one of the boys” or a stereotypical definition of a woman.

Women are clearly still not seen as an important part of the world. According to GMM report “24% of the people heard or read about in print, radio and television news are female. In contrast, 76% of the people in the news are male.”

Considering half the world’s population is female there is definitely something wrong with this statistic. Even when they are in the news they’re celebrities, victims or both.

Women may go hoarse screaming out that equality exists but these hard facts tell us otherwise.

My professor gave us a viable albeit difficult solution. He said to all of us female students, “don’t get mad, get even.” Watch out world, it maybe a small start but 33 of us girls are ready to tackle this media industry and soon.

Published in: on December 4, 2010 at 10:09 am  Comments (6)  
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Celebrities die a digital death

Celebrities are set to die a digital death starting on World Aids Day in the name of charity .

In the days of yore, if you wanted to be close to your idol or your favorite celebrity you had to spend hours waiting for them to show up at an event or literally stalk them.

Social networking sites created a revolution. Public figures are on facebook, myspace ,twitter and many other sites. They post personal messages; photographs and many things, which make their fans feel involved in their lives.  Not anymore though.

Celebrities are dying a digital death

The Digital life sacrifice campaign, headed by singer Alicia Keys aims to raise 1$ million. The campaign is for the Keep a child alive organization that helps victims of HIV and their families in India and Africa.

Image courtesy - Lindsanda1

Justin Timberlake, Lady Gaga, Alicia Keys, Kim Kardashian, Serena Williams and Ryan Seacreast are among the few who’ve signed off social networking sites until they manage to raise that amount. Starting on World Aids day 2010, they die a digital death.

Images of the celebrities in coffins signifying their digital deaths have been shot as a part of this campaign along with videos of their “last tweet and testiment”.  These are already available on the internet for the public to view.

Fans are asked to donate money to buy the life back of their favorite celebrity and in the process save suffering children and their families. The site for making donations is

Leigh Blake, the president and co-founder of Keep a Child Alive, told the BBC: “We’re trying to sort of make the remark: ‘Why do we care so much about the death of one celebrity as opposed to millions and millions of people dying in the place that we’re all from?”

This concept is unusual and thought provoking. The photographs have shocked fans and the video is powerful.

In the 21st century, half the world is online. We spend hours on the internet and possibly a few of those reading stories about our favorites celebrities, looking for their images and reading their tweets.

This is such a direct and instantly emotional way and a little sarcastic, you know, of a way to get people to pay attention,” said Alicia keys, to the BBC. She has more that 2.6 million followers on twitter.

It makes you think about how powerful technology really is. It’s innovative and intelligent and its for a good cause so get clicking and save someone’s life today.. literally and digitally.

Rehabilitation is for Quitters

image- - user- noctiss

It begins with one taste. It creeps up on you like a predator upon its quarry, leaving you no place to run or hide, all you can do is give in. You take one bite and it’s like you’ve lost control over all your senses.

It doesn’t matter that your dignity is gone; all that matters is that you get some more. Just one more taste of that thing that drives all your senses crazy. It’s luscious, it’s unsettling, it’s satisfying, and it’s uncontrollable yet it gives you the greatest pleasure as well as the greatest pain.

Then the only thing that matters is this insatiable desire, the madness that it evokes and race to submit yourself to it completely.

The only people that can identify with this are those with addictions. Addictions come in different shapes and sizes but they all do the same thing to you, they consume you and leave you wondering where the real you got left behind.

My addiction was my relationship.

From the outside it was perfect, we’d been together 3 years….and had made it through the most tumultuous times, mentally and physically intact.

Year one was the universally accepted honeymoon period. Year two was the roughest, lying, cheating and breaking hearts. And I didn’t do either.

But we survived, after a lot of effort we lived through our third year together. Then it happened.A day without seeing him meant I would be the nastiest woman around.

I began to overlook all his flaws ,his convenient lies that I could see through and forgave everything so I could have my fill of him.

When I looked in the mirror, I couldn’t recognise myself anymore. I didn’t look much different but the person I was looking for just wasn’t looking back.

It was wrong, painful and worst of all it was tearing me apart. I couldn’t figure out whether I was addicted to him or to the pain that he put me through. Was being masochistic my big flaw?

Smoking, drinking, drug addiction and an unhealthy relationship….all begin innocently and end badly. Ironically, the cigarette is the one that burns but it’s the human that goes to ashes, the bottle doesn’t bleed, the liver does. The jerk didn’t cry, I did.

Then I stood up. I walked away. It was the hardest thing in the world. If addictions were supposed to be easy, they wouldn’t be known as addictions. Living a life without the support of something that made me whole was unthinkable.

That’s when I realised Rehabilition IS for quitters. It’s for those people who want to quit being victims to their own stupid choices.

It’s high time you start being the predator.


A story of a woman- as told to the author.

Published in: on December 1, 2010 at 1:45 pm  Comments (1)  
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