Sunday, December 21, 2008

I'm incredulous ...

about the Sydney Morning Herald ( declaring the divine Ms Blanchett as the worst dressed Aussie celebrity of 2008. How dare they criticise her! Most of these Best & Worst dressed lists are a bunch of rubbish anyway. I remember Who magazine selected Charlize Theron as their Best Dressed of 2008 when I honestly couldn't remember anything she wore apart from a lot of bad fake tan. And the rest of their list was rounded up by a bunch of models looking super generic. It is very easy for a six foot tall 22-year-old stick to look good in a pretty dress - that is their job for goodness sake - but that doesn't make them a fashionista.

The Sydney Morning Herald has claimed that Cate's overdose on metallics has made her a fashion victim, but when you are as fashion forward and daring as Cate, you and bound to have some misses as well as hits. And I still maintain that the Alexander McQueen gold bell shaped dress looked beautiful on her. It was only the skin-coloured sheath underneath that I was slightly wary of.

Cate's looked stunning in 08 a lot of the time too. Here are a few reminders ...

Grrrr ...

Friday, December 19, 2008

Dress of the Week

I've been watching Scar Jo and Eva Mendes - two of the prettiest women in Hollywood - hit the red carpet all over the world this week to promote their new film 'The Spirit.' I must confess to knowing nothing at all about the film (oops), but I did notice what they were both wearing, and they were working some fantastic new and vintage frocks.

My favourite, however, was definitely this gorgeous yellow Bill Blass maxi dress Eva wore to the LA premiere. The colour and pattern of the fabric on this dress is absolutely divine. I fail to see how anyone couldn't absolutely adore this dress. The embellishments on the bodice are stunning as well. She looks a million bucks.

I actually tried on a cute new bra with a similar large yellow floral pattern to this dress last night, but instead I decided to go with a pink and turquoise lace one. Yes, yes, I know I am meant to be on a purchasing freeze. But yesterday was one of the worst days at work I've had all year (and I've had some shockers) and I needed a little pick-me-up. So far it doesn't look like the pick-me-up worked, as I'm sitting at home on the couch feeling decidedly yuck. Maybe I should have bought the yellow one?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

What I Wore Today

I decided to wear one of my designer dresses today. This is a Gorman dress which I picked up in Brisbane a couple of years ago when I was up there for the Writers' Festival. It was relatively expensive, especially for a cotton dress, but I'm really glad I bought it, as I've had plenty of wear out of it. It is a super flattering shape, with an adjustable halterneck, low cut in the decolletage (which is very unlike me, cause I don't really have one) curves in nicely at the waist and flares out at the backside.

I'm not buying much Aussie designer stuff these days, but I do like Gorman's new summer collection. There is a nice jacket I'm coveting and I checked out their website today and they have some cool slouchy jeans in their high summer collection. I think I'll be embracing the slouchy jean for next winter. And I've gotta say that I never really thought I'd say that again.

Cardigan - vintage
Dress - Gorman
Shoes - Lovely Bruno Maglis that my grandmother gave me
Ring - from My Boudoir in Darlinghurst
Hair-band - Mimco
And yes, I am wearing a side pony.

Monday, December 15, 2008

What I Wore Today ...

It was super hot this past weekend. In fact Saturday was even a little bit too hot for me, and that is saying something as I adore the hot weather. I think I managed to pick up a bit of a tan, though I stayed out of the sun in the middle of the day both days. Today was a bit cooler for a summers day, so it was definitely cardigan weather.
I've put myself on a spending ban for the next few weeks as Christmas is eating me out of house and home, plus I'm sure to receive some lovely gifts over the holidays. Thankfully I'm spending a week up with my parents where, to be honest, there is very few nice clothes to buy. Oh how my poor Mum suffers.

Cardigan - vintage
Dress - vintage, purchased online from the USA
Shoes - from Hype shoe store
Bracelet - thrifted from Les Puces de Saint-Ouen in Paris

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Daydreaming ...

So on days when I'm feeling unwell or a bit low, I escape to fantasy land by checking out this website:

This website has the most amazing vintage dresses I've seen online so far. Now that the Aussie dollar has taken a nosedive against the US dollar, I won't be ordering any vintage clothes from the US for a while, but regardless I would never be able to afford most of these stunning gowns anyway.

They've got vintage Cassini, Dior, Lanvin, Balenciaga and more. Drool. Their mid-century selection makes me swoon. How I would love to have just one or two of these dresses in my wardrobe, even just to look at them and try them on on rainy days. Lets face it, I don't really have anywhere to wear them.

Here is an example of one of the dresses. I am particularly enamoured of this one.

And speaking of designer couture, I'm attempting to cajole my darling boyfriend into driving me to Bendigo to check out the V&A 'Golden Age of Couture' exhibition which, irritatingly, is only being shown in Bendigo (a ten hour drive away from Sydney) until March and isn't visiting Sydney or Melbourne. Apparently some of the dresses on display are divine.

Any ideas on how I can bribe him? Bendigo looks like it could be fun. Even though I'm usually loath to venture more than 20kms from the beach during summer.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Oops ...

A dear friend has just alerted me to the fact that there is a spelling mistake in my banner. The horror, the horror. It does prove the old adage, though, that something can be staring you right in the face and you still won't see it.
Anyway, the banner is going offline until it gets fixed.
Bye for now ...

Thursday, December 11, 2008

What the Cleo Art Director didn't choose ...

So the photo-shoot and accompanying article I did for Cleo Mag is out on Monday. Yikes! I hope the photo turned out ok. And that the article is reasonably representative of who I am.

Anyway, here are a couple of the outfits I keenly recommended to the harrassed Cleo Art Director as candidates and which, for whatever reason, she didn't choose. I did end up wearing these denim shorts (the two other girls used in the story beat me to the shoot and wore dresses), but with a different top. I think this blouse - which my Mum picked out for me - works quite well with the shorts, and it also looks great with high waisted skirts and jeans. The slightly puffed sleeves need to be off-set by a cinched waist, but as long as I do that, I think it is pretty sassy.

My cute 70's era bright citrusy mini is a big time favourite of mine. It is too short to wear on weekdays, but I wear it a lot on weekends. I call it my '70's tennis Mum' outfit.

I think the dress could have rocked a photo-shoot, but it is probably a little too out-there for Cleo.

Dress - vintage
Wedges - purchased from Zero shoe store
Bracelet - gift from friend

Blouse - vintage
Shorts - from Ra Ra Superstar
Belt - thrifted
Shoes - from Apex

Dress of the Week

What a week! The perfect Cate Blanchett made not one but two appearances this week at premieres for the Curious Case of Benjiman Button. I have a wee moment of glee when I hear that Cate is making a red carpet appearance, as she always makes an impression with what she wears.
Alas I don't love either outfit enough for them to qualify for Dress of the Week. The gold bell shaped dress she wore to the LA premiere has caused quite a stir as it is so unusual. Personally I love the gold sequins and the bell shape, but she has lost me somewhat with the skin colour sheath underneath. Normally Cate can work beige colours quite well, particularly for someone so fair, but the sheath just looks a little bit like dodgy underwear. Boo hoo.
And her Sydney premiere dress is pretty enough - Cate certainly seems to be embracing metallics at the moment - but I don't think it is super flattering on her. I've seen her look better (although I LOVE the shoes and as always her face is flawless).
So controversially I've decided to choose a dress which I think was actually worn last week, but seeing as I only saw it this week in one of the trash magazines at work, I reckon I can squeeze it in.
Diane Kruger wore this gorgeous ivory, voluminous, sleeved dress to a premiere in Paris. This dress is so stunningly New Look-esque, it fills me with joy. Oh how I would love to own this dress. It is demure and elegant, while still being headturning. I love how she has accessorised with the red shoes too.
I actually don't think I've ever seen Diane Kruger wearing something I don't like. I know she is a big fashionista, and lucky for her she has the looks and confidence to pull off high fashion looks like this.
This breathtaking dress is Giambattista Valli.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

This Book Will Save Your Life

I recently finished US author A.M.Home's book This Book Will Save Your Life. I had heard quite a bit of buzz about her over the years, but had never got around to reading her, and I found this one in Borders on a day when I was somewhat lost as to what to buy.

I loved the tone of this novel - sparse and satirical and deadpan. It is about a wealthy day trader living in the Hollywood Hills who has become completely disconnected from the world around him. He barely leaves his beautiful home, has virtually no relationship with his family, including a son who lives in New York, and has outsourced everything that would keep him engaged with the world to housekeepers, nutrionists, fitness instructors, interior designers etc. A great satire on the weird world of LA, the main character Richard Novak's life takes a dramatic turn when he has what he thinks is a heart attack and ends up in hospital. From there on in he begins to reconnect with the world through a series of bizarre (and sometimes apocalyptic) events and encounters with interesting characters. The book really hits its stride in the latter part when Richard's son arrives in LA as part of his summer break and confronts his father over his unavailability and repressed love.

Homes manages to make all the bizarre plot twists and turns (like a horse getting trapped in a sink-hole, and Richard befriending a JD Salinger like reclusive famous author) very believeable, and the book certainly managed to hold my interest right until its strange ending.

It was funny, it was weird, it was uplifting and it was ultimately very hopeful. My main gripe with the book was that I would have liked to have read more about the son. Some people may also find reading about an uber wealthy person changing their life by giving money away a little self-indulgent or just plain irritating, but I guess rich LA traders deserve to have their story heard just as much as anyone. And the Hollywood weirdness of the novel certainly provided a lot of entertainment value.

I've passed this book onto a colleague now, so I hope I haven't done her a disservice as This Book Will Save Your Life was panned by a lot of the US critics (although it was a Richard & Judy pick in the UK). It certainly didn't save my life, but it didn't do me any harm either.

Published by Granta.

Saturday, December 6, 2008


This is Cate Blanchett receiving her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Although I wouldn't wear this outfit, as per usual Cate looks STUNNING. She truly is perfect.

That's all.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Dress of the Week

I had a Keira Knightley number as the frontrunner for the last two days, until I saw this pic of Amy Adams at the Gotham Independent Film Awards in NY. This dress doesn't pop quite like Keira's dress does. It's beauty kind of creeps up on your more. The pattern on it is very Deco I think and absolutely stunning. The dress is also very figure flattering and I love the neckline, which shoes off the collarbone but doesn't allow for decollotage or cleavage, while still being very sexy by showing off her great little waist.

Very chic and very New York. The dress is Carolina Herrera.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Gorgeous Reese

I can't afford to purchase paparazzi pics, but I saw this shot of Reese online today and thought I'd share it.

Some of the comments below are truly cruel, and most don't share my view that this outfit is truly awesome.

I have always had a bias for pastels, and I dig how she's managed to make a California winter look anything but wintry by working mauve and grey. Love the shoes, love the tights, the dress is really flattering on her and the whole outfit is matchy matchy gorgeous.

I think the outfit is totally age appropriate.

Reese has been making some great outfit choices recently and I generally admire her red carpet outfits.

I love her and Jake as a couple. I have fingers and toes crossed for them. And hope that Reese will pull out another gorgeous vintage number like the one she wore when she won her Oscar.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Cacharel skirt

On Saturday I trawled the vintage shops in the Eastern suburbs and picked up this gorgeous skirt and the apricot/pink short sleeved knit you see in this photo. I then took them out for a girly night down at the Opera Bar and then to see a film. Aren't they lovely?

I only discovered when I got home that the skirt is actually Cacharel, which explains its loveliness - as I've always liked the label - and makes me jump with glee as I got it for a steal. I've tried it on with a singlet too and it looks fab, so I'm sure it will be a popular choice for me over the summer.

I teamed it on the weekend with some fab yellow platform wedges I bought online at myrunway. And they weren't expensive either and are super comfy.

Oh, and btw the film we saw was The Wackness. I thought the portrayl of women in the film was pretty one dimensional - you can tell it was written and directed by a man - but overall I enjoyed it. Loved the music, it was shot brilliantly and it made me feel all whimsical about the mid 1990's and being 18. Four stars from me.

Top - vintage
Skirt - vintage
Shoes - Cinnamon from
Handbag - vintage
Ring - gift from a girlfriend

Monday, December 1, 2008

The End of Orangery?

There was an article in The Times in the UK recently that heralded the end of the era of tanorexia. All I can say is hallelujah!

I've hated fake tan ever since it became mainstream, basically because - like hair extensions, eyelash extensions and acrylic nails - no-one has ever been able to convince me that it looks anything but completely fake. When I see someone with an at home or spray tan I don't automatically look at them and think "wow, you must have just returned from a week in Bali" but rather I think "wow, you must have just made a visit to the orangery so as to impersonate an Oopma Loompa at a Willy Wonka fancy dress party." I am always horrified when I see an otherwise pretty young girl with orange goo oozing down her legs, or blotchy spots all over her decollatage. And surely covering your skin with all that gunk can't be good for you.

I've always associated fake tanning with celebrity trash-bags like Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan et al and the chavs that hang out at the local bars in my area. According to this article the sale of fake tan products has decreased in the UK and US and paleness is being heralded as the new tan.

How mid 1990's.

I must admit to a dangerous 'real tan' fixation some years ago, which thankfully was cured by my stint living in pale loving Japan and my fear of cancer and premature ageing. I still love the sun and the beach but avoid the midday sun and always wear sunscreen.

If this trend watch is true, I can only hope that the equally horrible trend of wearing tights as outerwear is on it's way out next. Alas I suspect I'll still see plenty of Oompa Loompas roaming Sydney this summer, unless they are trying to cover up their botched tan job and what they had for breakfast in a pair of black tights. As per usual, I'll be trying to avert my eyes.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Dress of the Week

I've decided to start a dress of the week item as 1. I thought it would be a little bit of fun and 2. it can provide inspiration. Feel free to disagree with me as you see fit.

This week I've chosen actress Molly Sims. I must confess that although her face is vaguely recognisable, I didn't know who she was when I saw her face in NW Magazine today (I promise I didn't buy NW, it was just sitting in the lunchroom at work today), so I wiki'ed her and found out she is on some TV show called Las Vegas that I've never watched.

Whatever, the dress is fab. I love the yellow and although I know not everyone can embrace this colour, I wish more people that can, would. I love the silver embellishments on the bodice and I think she's accessorised fabulously with the matchy matchy silver shoes and the hot red lippy. The dress is also that perfect length just below the knee and the fabric looks divine. I never really would have thought of silver as a complement to yellow, but it really works here. Molly's hair looks cute too.
Overall the whole effect is young but elegant.

The dress is by Bill Blass.

I thinks I need me a yellow dress for summer ...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Breakfast at Tiffany's

I try and read a couple of classics a year, and I just finished Breakfast at Tiffany's, although I'm not sure whether it will count against my quota seeing as it is actually a novella.

Having always been a fan of the flick starring Audrey, I had been hesitant to read Capote's novella in case it was so far removed from the book that it tainted the film for me, but I really, really enjoyed it. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that almost all the dialogue in the film is lifted directly from the book, and although there are a few of major differences including the ending, the decade in which it is set and the character of the narrator/'Fred', there is a lot that is the same too. Breakfast at Tiffany's is beautiful in its brevity. It is an amazingly well-crafted story, without a word to spare. And the character of Holly Golightly is so real and so memorable.

I really think Audrey did a brilliant job in the film, although I know Capote wasn't happy with the casting.

I read this in a couple of hours, and I would highly recommend . The edition I read, which is one of the orange jacketed Penguin Popular Classics, includes the short stories published with the original first edition, and I read these too. They have definitely given me a taste for more Capote.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Elizabeth Taylor

I just wanted to post this picture because I think it is a truly lovely one of a young Elizabeth Taylor. I think she is the 20th Century's greatest Hollywood beauty, plus I completely covet her cute bikini top she is wearing in this photo. It was taken on the set of Giant.

Look at that waist!

Sixties empire line number

So my latest frock purchase is this very pretty circa 1960's number I picked up from the Vintage Clothing Shop. It was heavily reduced as apparently no-one seemed to be able to fit into it. Lucky for me I have small boobies, so it fit me and I got it at the heavily discounted price. Hurrah! It is actually a wee bit big on me, but at least I have room to move. With a good dry clean, a padded bra, the right shoes and maybe a fancy hat, I think it will make perfect race-wear.

I was drawn to the dress initially by the colour (my favourite - pink), but I particularly like the bow detail on the empire waist and the matching fabric at the neck. The neck is very high, and the lovely guy at the store suggested I could turn it down if I like, but I actually prefer it up. I should have got a pic really with my hair up, as I think that makes the look a little sexier.