Monday, June 29, 2015

Happy Happy Monday - Toward Marriage Equality #lovewins


In a historic ruling over the weekend, the United States Supreme Court made same-sex marriage a lawful right everywhere in America.

Justice Anthony M Kennedy wrote for the majority that "No longer may this liberty be denied. No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were."

Marriage is a "keystone of our social order" he wrote, adding that the plaintiffs in the case were seeking "equal dignity in the eyes of the law."

This decision marks the culmination of decades of litigation and activism on this most simple human right. The decision comes amid fast-moving changes in public opinion, with polls indicating that most Americans now approve of same-sex unions.

What better way to fight those in the dark corners of the globe by not only celebrating the freedoms we currently have, but by providing yet greater freedoms to those long-marginalised? This is what we fight for: hardwon, staunchly defended freedom. I hope our country can embrace similar ideals, but fear a few things may need to change around here before that can become reality.

But who cares? Today, love conquers all.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Carla Zampatti: 50 Years Strong

Lovers of Australian fashion will be very familiar with the story of Italian born designer Carla Zampatti and her much-loved eponymous label, Carla Zampatti.

After emigrating to Australia as a child in 1950, Zampatti released her first collection in 1965. In the following 5 decades of celebrated design, Carla has consistently produced effortlessly elegant, streamlined collections in vivid hues that are perfect for the modern Australian woman - no matter her age. In her own words, Zampatti has noted that "from the beginning, I wanted to create haute couture pieces that women could  buy at an affordable price."

As she celebrates half a century of timeless design (and her 100th collection), Zampatti's latest collection is one of her strongest. Beautiful dresses in vivid hues of fuschia, sapphire and vibrant lemon, with plenty of spring's staple black + white and classic blacks, Zampatti's spring/summer collection (previewed at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in Melbourne earlier this year) screams spring racing and champagne soaked soirees.

Carla Zampatti's latest collection was presented at Sydney's iconic Opera House, with the Harbour Bridge serving as a dramatic backdrop

Later this year, she will also publish a coffee table book celebrating her time in one of the more fickle industries in the country.

Zampatti's shades of pink are the perfect anti-dote to the gloomy winter's days I've been experiencing in Southern Australia:

I would like to own this in a somewhat wild-eyed, desperate kind of way

PS Great sneakers, front-row lady

The remainder of the collection is equally glamorous and deliciously upbeat:

If you weren't sure, Carla Z is the lady in the sunglasses


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Shoesday: Some People Don't Have Shoes

Adelaide artist Peter Drew has been travelling Australia challenging some of our basic assumptions on this refugee "crisis" we are apparently facing. Some say Australia doesn't have a refugee crisis, and say we have a racism issue. I would argue against that - I think we have some fundamental problems with how our media reports on issues, and I believe our politicians are doing us a disservice by clouding the reality of the situation with their rhetoric and inflammatory use of words.

Peter has been travelling Australia and plans to culminate his trip this week in Canberra as we celebrate (or something) Refugee Week, which started this week. He found inspiration in our national anthem which features the lines:

For those who’ve come across the seas 
We’ve boundless plains to share 
With courage let us all combine 
To advance Australia fair

The posters are really great, and they really make you think twice (I find) when you see them - I think to myself "Am I being welcoming today?". Sometimes my resting bitch face would say "no", I have no doubt ;o)

I wanted to share some important statistics on this issue, as I think it's essential we have perspective and clarity:

Fact 1It’s not a crime to come to Australia by boat without a visa and ask for protection
People are often fleeing their home country for dear life. And they are legally entitled to do so. 

It is not a crime to arrive here by boat without a valid visa and ask for protection. It is not illegal to flee persecution, to cross borders without documents/passports in order to seek asylum. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights enshrines the right to seek asylum from persecution. We should value this document, and the principles it espouses, much more than we currently do.

Fact 2: There’s no official queue for people coming to Australia seeking a safe place to live
It simply doesn't exist in the manner in which it is represented by our politicians and certain sections of the media. 

Fact 3: Only 1% of the world’s refugees is likely to be given safe haven in any given year
And that's a tragedy. Need outstrips supply in a major way. No wonder there are human traffickers lining up to deal in this awful trade of hope and survival.

As the Refugee Council of Australia notes:
We know from our decades and decades of experience working with vulnerable migrants that the vast majority of asylum seekers and refugees flee to escape persecution, torture and death – dangers inflicted on them because of their race, religion, nationality, social group or political opinions.
Some have seen their closest relatives and friends murdered, and their homes and villages burnt to the ground. They’ve suffered torture and their bodies, like their minds, are covered in scars that will never disappear. They are survivors. They come from all walks of life, rich and poor. They flee, simply, because they want to live.
Have you put your welcome mat out lately? And what kind of country do you want to live in? One that genuinely attempts to discharge its obligations as a privileged (in terms of development) member of the United Nations in a fair and compassionate manner? Or somewhere different?  Insular, unwelcoming and - worst of all - uninformed?

Friday, June 5, 2015

Friday Blush

It's June, I say with an enormous sigh. And by "June", I mean winter.

After a quick trip to Melbourne this week, where temperatures plummeted to 3 degrees overnight and rose to a measly 12 degree max temp (eroded rapidly by Antarctic winds), I was pleased that I had packed an entire sheep's worth of woollen clothing. Unfortunately, all items were shades of grey, charcoal and moonless midnight black. Of course we love black. Black is the timeless classic that makes us look chic, put together and efficient all at once. However there can be too much of a good thing.

So I give you woollen jackets in all the colours our cheeks turn when confronted with a gorgeous man, a freezing wind, too much champagne or simply happy news: blush.

And then there was this - sparkling pink shearling coats. I. Die.

Happy Friday. Stay warm! xo