For a conversation that’s ostensibly about her big TV show The Crown, Claire Foy and I spend an awful lot of time talking about cake. Part of it is a question of timing: It’s late on a Friday afternoon, a.k.a. sweet-craving o’clock. It’s also the day after I had tea with an ex-chef of Queen Elizabeth’s (relevant because Foy plays the Queen on the breakout Netflix hit about the early years of her reign) and was full of fun facts about her eating habits. (Side fact: The real Liz Windsor’s favourite treat is chocolate biscuit cake. When it’s served at tea, it’s the only one she eats more than a sliver of.)
Foy also has sugar (or a lack thereof) on the brain. She’s a self-described “addict” who recently got “back on the wagon” (all the better to fit into the wasp-waist fashions her character wears on the show, currently in production for its second season). “I was on, like, an eight-month bender where I just ate anything that had any sugar in it,” she confesses over the phone from London, where she lives with her husband and daughter. “I definitely live to eat, but giving up sugar just makes you feel so much better. I’ve become sort of evangelical about it.” In fact, “giving up sugar” is one of the things that Foy and her co-star Vanessa Kirby (who plays Princess Margaret) talk about between takes.
She also mentions that she really struggled to keep a straight face while filming scenes with John Lithgow (Winston Churchill). “You’ll notice that there are no lingering shots of the two of us,” she shares, pinning the blame on Lithgow. “They cut quite fast because I just can’t be in a room with that man without laughing. He’s got funny bones.”
Of course, not every scene could be taken quite so lightly, especially given that the series is high in interpersonal and political drama. I mean, in the 10 episodes of the first season alone, we see Elizabeth’s uncle abdicate, her father die, her husband’s attentions wander and her sister’s heart break—not to mention the symbolic weight of her taking on the changing British Empire at the age of 25.
“I remember when we shot the coronation,” recalls Foy, referring to the showstopper scene in the first season of the most expensive Netflix series ever. “I thought that Elizabeth would have been more nervous when it came to making her vows to God, but that moment actually gave her strength, as opposed to being a massive weight on her shoulders. She might have felt quite lonely before, but in that moment she felt a union and a reassurance. She suddenly got it and realized that that was what she was supposed to be doing.”
The series, for which Foy just won a Golden Globe, emphasizes the young queen’s strong sense of duty and how it is sort of a North Star that guides her life. Foy, well, not so much. “It did make me think, ‘Would I stick with something I didn’t want to do because I felt it was my duty?’” she says. “The answer is I don’t know. It’s day by day, isn’t it? You can’t look at the next 60 years of your life and say ‘I shall do this forever.’ You just have to live each day well and hopefully get to the end of it.”
And, yes, that includes going sugar-free.
Would you rather your S.O. took a lovah than watch an episode of Broadchurch without you? If so...7 percent of Canadians surveyed agree with you.
In new "cheating" data released to coincide with Valentien's Day, Netflix is exposing the surprising habits of Canada's couples on the online streaming service, and well, that above stat gave us pause. Really?!!
Infidelity in this scenario is defined as watching an episode of that series you're bingeing on together without telling the other person, something that's occurred in 46 percent of the relationships they surveyed.
And what's more: Most are serial offenders, with 81 percent confessing to doing it more than "just that one time with Narcos while you were away in Seattle on that business trip and we stopped at that major cliffhanger."
Hana Tajima for UNIQLO spring 2017 Image by: UNIQLO
Designed in collaboration with Hana Tajima, UNIQLO’s inclusive offering launches on February 24.
Hana Tajima, a multi-disciplinary artist and designer, has been producing a line of modest wear with UNIQLO since 2015. This season, the collection arrives at UNIQLO stores in Canada for the first time. The line includes drapey tunics with ties to change the fit, crisp collarless linen blouses and softly pleated trousers in a pleasing palette of navy, white, rust and olive green along with a range of hijabs and abayas. It’s all part of the Japanese basics purveyor’s “Life Wear” concept, which promises clothing for all. Indeed, the lavender duster coat and striped cropped trousers could seamlessly blend into anyone’s wardrobe—something Tajima says is intentional. Here’s how New York-based, London-raised Tajima is pushing back against homogeny in fashion through her empowering designs.
What’s your design process like?
"I design by draping on a form, a lot of the time I don’t know what the collection is going to be before I start. The draping process helps define it. A lot of asymmetry was coming out in my work, which accentuates the feeling of movement in these pieces."
How has the line evolved since it began?
"We started off just in South East Asia, and for those countries it was a about bringing a different aesthetic to mainstream fashion. Because we were dealing with a hotter climate we were using really lightweight fabrics. The more we introduced the collection to other places around the world, the more we had to differentiate between seasons. The essence of it stayed the same, but the colours and fabrics have been adapted. The colours that sell the best in South East Asia very vibrant pinks and yellows, but here of course it’s black, navy and white. It’s really interesting to see those dynamics."
What is it like to work with UNIQLO? Are you flying to Tokyo a lot?
"Oh, there’s a lot of travel to Tokyo, which on a personal level is really fantastic. They’re so dedicated to the perfection of an item and my approach has always been to refine and redefine what a shirt means, or what an individual item means."
How does it feel to see a global brand take on this line?
"It’s really fantastic. I think it’s not just for Muslim women but for any sort of minority. Having a voice on a global platform is really inspiring and empowering. It’s indicative of a push back against a homogenous identity and what it means to be a woman."
Was there a need that you heard women express that wasn’t being met before this collection?
"There’s definitely a correlation between the androgynous look and modest wear. And I think that where they intersect is this idea of redefining femininity. There are demands from both sides. From women who want to wear modest clothing for either religious or cultural reasons to women who want to redefine what it means to be feminine. For me, the process ends but the design gets transferred to the person wearing it. I want to provide details and different ways to wear a piece to allow people to interpret these designs in their own way."
Hana Tajima for UNIQLO
When you’re talking to someone who is perhaps not the core customer for this line, are there misconceptions about modest wear?
"The term modest wear as a concept is tied to a certain cultural background. But it’s opening up. The name itself is sort of awkward and there’s still judgement about the person wearing it. But I think that the more we open that term up to mean something more inclusive, the better it’s going to be. And weirdly, fashion is considered something less weighty..."
"Exactly. But it allows people to connect because it gives us something to relate to. It lets people drop their guard and really connect with each other on a human level."
Hana Tajima for UNIQLO
Plus, see how all your other favourite celebs celebrated the mushiest day of the year.
Barack and Michelle Obama
John Legend and Chrissy Teigen
Kim Kardashian West and Kayne West
Jenna Dewan Tatum
Sarah Michelle Gellar
Here are 11 seconds of one of my happiest days. Driving in the '67 Lincoln to the courthouse, listening to #brettdennen on a mix My Valentine made especially for this particular ride. I'm filled with excitement and nervous energy. And then he floors it- just to make me giggle. I love you with my whole heart, @daxshepard - for everything you are and all that you have taught me. Happy Valentine's day. #happyvalentinesday #valentines #valentinesday
Chance the Rapper