Behind the below shot, there is a story to tell as to how I got to possess Remy the rat, whose computer-animated film carries one of the funniest tag lines in cinema history, ‘The Rat who wants to become a Chef’. And try as I might not to wear it as it has great sentimental value; I just can’t help slipping it on when I go out as it makes me feel so darn happy-
So how did I come to acquire this Pixar Animated treasure? Well, the story goes back a few years when I met Remy the Rat in a boutique in East London that was owned by London’s Queen of Screen Print, Aida Bragstarr. At the time for whatever reason, as much as I wanted to buy him, I couldn’t, and since then time and again, I have regretted not staking my claim on him.
You see I am majorly into animation-especially Disney ones, everyone who truly knows me knows this. But I am on old school Disney fan and love the Disney greats like Snow White, Beauty and the Beast (my favourite) and The Little Mermaid. I am not a huge fan of ‘New Technology Computer Animation’ (with the exception of Finding Nemo and The Incredibles) as I feel the angular drawings of the characters lacked a certain romantic softness and quite frankly, I found the characters had no ‘soul’. Tarzan or Hercules anyone? I didn’t think so.
However with Ratatouille, I was very moved by Remy’s story- maybe it’s because when the story is stripped bare- it’s about a creative who will do anything to make his dream and passion become his career, which strikes a nerve with me, so much so that erm, I kind of cried at the end.
Anyway moving on, a few months ago Aida got in touch with me again via Facebook. She asked me if I remembered her and to that I answered, ‘Ofcourse! you had the Ratatouille necklace, which I have regretted not buying ever since’. Aida then told me that if she should ever see it again she would send it to me. Honestly, at the time I thought she was blowing hot, polite air; reason being from my experience in the fashion industry, one does not often benefit from the kindness of strangers, or people you think you know for that matter.
Fast forward a few weeks later and I was having an especially gloomy Saturday afternoon. It was one of those days when the joys of moving to a new city, trying to make new friends and working at making a new life for myself , all seemed like chores- a never-ending, energy draining quest for happiness. As I cried for a lengthy period on my bed, something told me to open my Facebook account and when I did, I had got a message from Aida saying that as she was cleaning up she had found Remy and was going to send him to me. As you can imagine, that cheered me right up! I am not a spiritual, super religious type- but I do put a lot of meaning into signs.
In one of my darkest moments when I felt utterly alone, I got a sign that there is beauty in the world because there are people in this ‘Dog eat Dog industry’ who are willing to do something for nothing. When I was telling a friend the story and how I was so touched that Aida hadn’t asked for money for Remy (even when I insisted on paying), he picked the necklace up and said something along the lines of- but this can’t be worth much. I just smiled to myself because he didn’t get it. A gift doesn’t have to be made out of precious stones for it to be worth something, it’s the thought that goes behind it and what the gift signifies that is priceless. Well, that’s how I see it anyway.
I had planned on including in this post all about Aida’s amazing online boutique– www.bragclothing.com but to do her work justice, I will be putting up a post shortly that focuses solely on her amazing stylish, statement prints she makes by hand which are all ethically sourced. STAY TUNED!