Monday, December 31, 2012


It's been quite the year! I was looking back on what had happened this year, and it was all a bit of a meandering blur - some parts good, other parts tedious, others terrific. All I know is, it was a looooong year!

An economic downturn in my industry mid-way through 2012 left me reeling, as I changed jobs (again) and saw huge amounts of staff made redundant. So much so, that I had the awful realisation one day that I didn't know anyone at work anymore, because they'd all been fired! It was horrible. Having begun the year on an absolute high work-wise in terms of loving my job, rushing to work each day because there was so much fun and fulfilment to be had to ending it on a low was pretty tough mentally. By the end of this year, it felt like I was trudging against the current of thick rivers of sludgy mud.

On the positive side, I most certainly learnt a lot... And again learnt the important lesson of being grateful for what I have, and remembering that diplomacy is essential at all times of the day. Saying what you really think is rarely appropriate in the office (unless you're the boss - then you can knock yourself out). Thankfully, the last meeting of the year that I had put things into perspective, and I have new enthusiasm for the role. Here's hoping it lasts throughout 2013! (I'm sure it will. I need the money!)

Speaking of diplomacy, I re-learnt the very important lesson of trusting your instincts and the importance of living with integrity. An instinct I'd had in 2002/3 about someone who had resurfaced in my life turned out to be correct. I have actually been horrified to hear some of the stories that have emerged from others' encounters with this person. As they say - a leopard doesn't change its spots. Or as I would say - once a snake, always a snake.

Lots of my friends had beautiful little babies, which was absolutely lovely. I frequently marvel at these women, because it seems like such a lot to juggle and yet they do it with absolute grace. Yeah it's a natural instinct, and yeah women rule and are brilliant at multi-tasking, but child rearing is the ultimate in multi-tasking.

Multi-tasking yummy mummy, fashion designer Victoria Beckham with baby Harper

Probably my favourite new mum of the year would be Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer. Her advice to new mums: "You have to ruthlessly prioritise." And clearly work is a major priority, back at work within hours of giving birth, and doing full days within a few weeks. She has copped a lot of flack for this - particularly when she said she was pleasantly surprised by how easily she juggled baby and work (the Twitterverse went nutso from the crazy mother contingent). Good luck to her I say. If you can do it, why not do it and be proud of that? I think she's an inspiration, showing that you can return to work and not be considered a terrible mother, AND for being honest - she got lucky and has a good baby. It happens. It's not all horror stories and babies screaming the house down all night.

I got to travel a little this year, heading back to Japan with my lovely boyfriend. Japan still captures my fascination - intimidating, bewildering, mind-boggling, hilarious and proudly beautiful. It's an amazing country, and such an enigma.

In global politics, China had a relatively peaceful transition to its new leadership and the USA continued to give the world hope by re-electing Barack Obama.

The issue of misogyny went bananas in Australia, and I was horrified by how Australians have chosen to deal with their female leader. I'll decline to get started on Australia's rampant tall poppy syndrome and our overwhelming conservatism which seems to be borne of fear of anything out of the box. And we have the hide to laugh at the ignorance of American red necks.  The shame.

My mini-obsession with the Royals grew, reading Wolf Hall (fabulous, multi-award winning book about Thomas Cromwell, King Henry VIII and the Boleyn family), tracking Kate Middleton's fashion as she toured south east Asia and then announcing her pregnancy! It was almost too much!

In the romantic realm, I learnt that the old adage all good things come to those who wait is absolutely, 100% true. On the 19th December, I got engaged via the most gorgeous, thoughtful proposal I could have ever dreamed of. Every day I feel so lucky to be with him, and I marvel at how much better life is when shared with the right person. All the wondering, all the waiting ... it has all been worth it. I am very excited (and a little stressed - I'm not great at planning) to be getting married next year. I'm going to be a Mrs!

And that, my friends, is that. 2012 can fade into the good night, as we all ponder a wonderful 2013.

Happy New Year! xo

Monday, December 17, 2012

On the Second Day of Christmas

My true love gave to me... Kitsch for my kitchen.

My dirty secret is that I rather love garish things. I have Hello Kitty stashes, glitter in drawers just begging to be splashed around, and neon pink all over the place. My boyfriend shakes his head, but on the inside I rejoice!

These recipe glasses are silly yet functional - cocktail recipes on the side, y'all! It doesn't get better than that.

On The First Day of Christmas

(as per usual, I am rather overdue with this but we can pretend it's 4 days ago, I'm sure...)

A really ugly, but really clever and powerful handbag...

If, like me, your tech-y devices are always 15% of battery power away from dying, you need a Phorce Bag. The Phorce Bag holds integrated lightweight batteries which can juice up your MacBook + THREE additional USB devices ALL AT THE SAME GODDAM TIME. That's impressive! The bags are water resistant, have many multi-pockets (space for snacks so you the human driving the devices can also recharge), the bags have a crazy strap system that means your bag can go from a messenger bag to a backpack to a briefcase. (I have a feeling these bags are more for the man in your life, but whatever... My true love gave it to me, so it's mine). 

The other amazing thing about this bag is that it can sync with your phone, meaning if you accidentally leave your bag behind (or, let's face it, some arsehole nicks it), your bag will alert you. That is an insane amount of intelligence in a little piece of bag. Probably smarter than me when I'm tired and emotional. 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Shoesday: Summer Days

Summer days call for summery, strappy sandals and fabulous hues on pedicured toes.

YSL is really leading the charge this summer, with every colour of the rainbow (neon included) available in patents, matte and untreated leathers.

I saw the silver sandals at the delightfully, unashamedly pretentious Jean Brown Christmas party the other evening, and was tempted to take out the wearer in what would have been an unladylike display of alpha female behaviour. I resisted.

Thankfully, there are plenty of less obnoxiously overpriced sandals on the market... A pair that recently caught my eye includes the Saltwater Sandal - already dubbed an ugly shoe up there with the likes of UGG boots, Birkenstocks and Crocs by New York Magazine - they were quite cute on the salesgirl whose feet I was eyeing off that day. Made originally for kids, these sandals have been a staple American shoes since the 1940s. With their chunky straps, uber flat soles and an abundance of colours to choose from, these sandals are really starting to take off amongst the hipster crowd (i.e. they are sold at The Happy Cabin - hipster heaven in Brisbane's West End).

Retailing for about $80 in hipster boutiques in Oz, you can find them online for considerably cheaper - about US$35 if you hunt around.

Not having the patience for international shipping and, let's face it preferring a heel in my shoes, I went home with these wedges from Country Road in black (brown colour shown).

Friday, December 7, 2012


I have a "fur baby" (I actually call her a puppy, but everyone else calls it my fur baby - it's not, it's a DOG people!). Her name is 99. She is radical. She's a French Bulldog. Kind of the dog of the moment right now... I've wanted a Frenchie since I saw one on the street in New York City and pinned down the young couple walking her to find out what kind of dog she is.

She is smart, friendly, cute, quirky and has ears as enormous as her personality. If I am distracted by alcohol, she eats my shoes and bras. But apart from that, she's super well-behaved - to the point that I am honestly amazed. For example, my boyfriend and I toilet trained her in a matter of hours (!!!)

Here's a cute ad featuring a couple of Frenchies... As most dog-owners would know, we always want to know what our dog is thinking, and this ad really plays on that. Enjoy:

Happy Friday: And So It Is

From the first moment that I held my beautiful, vulnerable and completely innocent niece in my arms, something inside of me became wholly committed to ensuring that no harm would ever come to her. And I mean EVER, in a slightly psycho, overly protective dancer mum kind of way.

So every time new evidence flowed in in the Daniel Morcombe case - a missing person case that has held Queenslanders in horrified suspense for precisely 9 years - there was a pain in the chest. Each time his parents appeared in the press, Mrs Morcombe seemingly smaller each time we saw her, our heart ached for them, and we collectively yearned for good news. While it has ended sadly, for the Morcombes, it has simply finally ended. Daniel Morcombe's young remains were laid to rest today. With mixed feelings - sadness, relief, anger, and surely regret for some - we all wore red to celebrate a young loss, and to support a traumatised family. So spare a thought today for the children who have been hurt and lost their innocence all too young - who don't have the all-encompassing protection we so wish we could provide - and for the parents, friends and family who equally suffer and feel their pain.

* Image from UNIEF Photo-Pledge for Children. 

And we're so passionate about babies and kidlets generally because they are truly so great. I have two lovely, clever and beautiful little nieces now and I love them dearly. And SO MANY of my friends have had or are having their first child (it's at epidemic levels this pregnancy thing), and it's a delight to see how smitten they are with these tiny people. 

So happy Friday to all those with a bun in the oven or a new little munchkin to be devoted to (as nanna, aunty, mummy or dada). They really are bundles of pure joy. 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Shoesday: Baby It's Damn Hot Outside

It's too hot to not wear shoes today, and the Christmas parties have been flowing thick and fast since October. So you know what that means... Party shoes! Closed in shoes need not apply.

Monday, December 3, 2012



The Beat Goes On

All of a sudden, it's been over 2 months since my last post...

I honestly miss blogging - I'm not sure why. I don't earn money from it, I don't have a readership to write home about, and I'm not exactly a talented writer. But there is something about it that I really enjoy. So. I'm back!

And it's the fading hours of Monday...

I hope your Mondayitis wasn't on par with mine. There is nothing worse than a glorious heatwave (yes, I have an illness - I am obsessed with uncomfortably hot weather) beating down outside while you are bound to a computer, frozen rigid from an overly anxious air conditioning system.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Thought For the Day: Are You Content?

He is richest who is content with the least, for contentment is the wealth of nature.
- Socrates

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

New York Fashion Week: Oscar de la Renta

Pretty, pretty, pretty.

Shoesday: Simplicity

Cons are just too good - but only on the weekend. I bought a ridiculously high pair of heels today - to offset my sneaker obsession, and to celebrate Spring.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Isabel Marant

Now that we've established I'm obsessed with her sneakers, I can also advise I'm pretty much completely obsessed with Isabel Marant. She can't stand the pomp of fashion shows, and she is famously understated.

Taking her style cues from Americana and American sportswear, Marant's Autumn/Winter collection is a delightful bunch of utterly wearable garments.

Another thing I've noticed about myself recently (apart from my flat shoe guilty pleasure), is a love of slightly baggier, less skin-hugging clothing. Don't get me wrong, I'm not wearing paper bags, but I'm also not drawing too much attention to my stomach or bum the way I may have done a few years ago. I'm loving playing with layers, and enjoying not having to mindfully suck my stomach in when in public. 

As she notes (and this is one of the things I really love about her, not really being a jeans wearer myself):
I tend to grab the most comfortable piece .. I've got a little boy who is quite tough, so I'm sensitive about the practical aspect of clothes. But at the same tie, I don't want to be just wearing a normal T-shirt and a normal pair of blue jeans - it needs to be something special."

She also has this to say about the pressure of being a designer, which really resonated with me, and which I think is equally applicable to the modern woman who seeks to balance a multitude of responsibilities, desires and day-to-day necessary activities:

I'm trying to have a very balanced and organised life. I say often that now designers are like sportspeople: you have to sleep well, you have to eat well, you have to keep in good health, because it's really a battle every season to be on time and to be on top. I think the time when you had the image of designers taking drugs and being out every night drinking and partying doesn't exist anymore. I practise yoga and swim a lot. On the weekends I go to my little cabin in the forest near Paris without water and electricity, and it's really the way I can breathe."

Amen to that. Unfortunately I don't have a cabin near Paris to retreat to, but I'm working on that. :o)

Shoesday: Flattened

I am an ardent lover of the sky- high heel, I cannot deny. However something has happened lately. Maybe it's that my office is a 20-30 minute walk to most of my meetings (no complaints from me - how good is walking?), maybe I've just lucked out with finding comfortable heels of late. Whatever it is, flat shoes are singing an irresistible siren song at the moment - one that I'm finding physically difficult to restrain myself from being drawn to.

In the mornings, as I pull on heels I stare wistfully at the flats in my Flat Shoe Basket. When I shop, I find my eye hovering for dangerously lengthy periods at the flat shoes. I'm not entirely sure of the attraction, but perhaps Victoria Beckham feels it too. At her latest showing at NYFW, her models stepped out in flat sandals - eschewing her usual stick-thin stilettos for a more hard-wearing shoe.

 While VB didn't wear flats herself, I wonder if a little part of her wasn't yearning to slip them on herself. After all - she's had a stack of kids, one of which she is still carrying around. It must be exhausting - not to mention a little precarious.

Although not a huge fan of the sandals showcased myself (a little too Gladiatorial for my liking), I do love a flat. There. I said it! I feel a little dirty admitting it, but it's true.

Flats can be fabulous, too.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Chic Spice

Due to laziness and a lack of time to read every review of New York Fashion Week (yep! It's that time of year again!) available.. I am swiping this review of Victoria Beckham's latest, much admired collection. She is on fire - definitely one of the darlings of fashion in New York this northern hemisphere autumn.

Words taken from The Guardian - written by Jess Cartner-Morley.

Anyone still doubting the respect the Victoria Beckham name commands in the fashion industry would have been silenced by the scene at the New York Public Library on Sunday morning. At fashion week, a designer's status can be calculated before their show has even begun, by who is there and how dressed up the audience are. This show commanded a royal flush of the queens of modern fashion – Anna Wintour, Anna dello Russo, Natalie Massenet, Harper Beckham – and almost the entire row wore five-inch spiked heels.
But Harper, who chose flat bootees, was as on-trend as one would expect from a junior style icon. The surprise of this collection was that most of the shoes were flat summer boots open at the toe and heel – a hybrid of biker boots and gladiator's sandals – with only the slinkiest cocktail dresses paired with stiletto heels. This was the first Victoria Beckham collection to include shoes, a natural next step after dresses and handbags, especially for a woman who is world-famous for her near-Olympian prowess on heels. (Remember the 6½in pump she wore to the royal wedding while seven months pregnant?)
The element of surprise has been a part of the Victoria Beckham label from the start. She surprised the industry first by announcing she was becoming a designer, surprised it again with a debut that garnered raves and then surprised it yet again by keeping pace as the level of expectation rose each season. Having now reached a point where the quality of her clothes is not news in itself, she must now find new ways to pique interest each season.

With more separates than dresses, long, loose silhouettes alongside the short, tight ones, and a sleek, minimal colour palette of ivory, black and orange, this collection had a new, laid-back ease. With the striped runway, the wooden bench seating and the simple centre-parted hair of the models, the mood of the show had more in common with a cool Paris fashion week production – a hint of Celine – than with the rarified, ultra-ladylike atmosphere of the grand hotel suites in which Beckham showed her early collections of corseted dresses to fashion editors.

Backstage after the show, Beckham said that she had focused on separates rather than dresses because "there's a lot more to think about, and I wanted to challenge myself. Tailoring is so difficult, and I am incredibly particular about shoulders, so it has taken me a long time to come up with a perfect jacket." Being a sharp businesswoman, she was also keen to stress that the body-conscious aesthetic that first made her name was still very much part of the label. For evening, lingerie-detailed, scuba-tight cocktail dresses were a delicate, downtown update on the Victoria Beckham signature.

The Beckham brand will always be about celebrity as well as fashion. But in the fashion industry, Victoria is increasingly viewed as a working designer, with her husband the celebrity to be stared at.
As his wife conducted post-show interviews backstage, David Beckham held Harper in his arms, smiling patiently as models queued up to snap endless iPhone photos of father and daughter.
Victoria looked tearful as she took her catwalk bow. "I can't believe I cried," she said afterwards. "I'm not really a cryer. But this matters so much. It matters more than it probably should."