Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Feliz Navidad Whatever

 Feliz Whatever.
It is now late afternoon on Christmas Day. I must say that it is a rather unusual time to blog & perhaps indicates that I have nothing better to do.
 But nothing, My Dear Reader, could be further from the truth.
 I am sitting in Marge's front parlour in front of her magnificent artificial fire with v. real-looking flames listening to a Joan Baez LP Record on a record player that Maeflower & me bought for her as a Xmas gift.
All around me are the remains of a two-hour marathon of gift-giving that we performed earlier in the day.
Kenneth, Marge's beloved husband has put a v. large turkey in the oven & we are waiting breathlessly for it.
The picture above of Maeflower visiting the famous Becker House on Sycamore in the Simi Valley is meant to put you in a festive mood just in case you weren't in it. Perhaps you are All Festived Out?
I sincerely hope not.

Now let me take you on a Little Odyssey.

It looks like Marge & I are marvelling at Giant Spaghetti. But we're not.
Sadly, it's just plastic but it's fantastic.
We stumbled across it at LACMA - Los Angeles County Museum. I personally could have spent many happy hours playing amongst it. But we had to move on.

 Like to Late Picasso.

And then to the v. confronting Robert Mapplethorpe whose small black & white photographs of Unmentionable Acts worthy of a mention in The Guinness Book of Records juxtaposed with delicate flower portraits were featured in a v.v. darkly lit side gallery that came with a warning- MAY not be suitable for all audiences.
I'll say. But maybe I over-reacted because of the Jet Lag.

 I did react quite emotionally to the many US flags that were at Half Mast in remembrance of the recent Sandy Hook massacre. Here's one on Wilshire Bvd.

 Meanwhile, back at Boring Barney's (OMG, I feel almost blasphemouse saying that), Maeflower & Naetitia are trying on Outer Garments in Shades of Brown.
Sadly, no purchases were made.

Oh, as were driving out of the Barney's Carpark, we had a kind of Celebrity Sighting. If you look closely or perhaps squint, you can barely make out a slightly blurred figure in Shades of Grey.
That was Jennifer Garner who is walking out the back door & into what looked like an Armoured SUV. She isn't carrying any purchases because Minions who didn't feature in the photo are doing it for her.
Note Marge's Matching Cuffs which I bought for her as a Birthday Gift some months back.

Next stop was The Huntington Library in Pasadena. What a joint.
Here I am trying to look kind of coy amongst the Statues on the Huntington Estate. Note one half of my new favourite Golden cuff freshly bought from Forever 21.

Maeflower & Me at Huntington. She's wearing my Chanel silver chain belt & I'm wearing a v.v. old Chanel bag that my friend AJ said looked 'on its last legs' when I bought it at my favourite thrift shop for ten bucks some months back.

How wrong she was.

More Huntington. I always love that everywhere I go in Southern California, there's always mountains in the distance. And Palm Trees close by. And generally blue skies. And Starbucks.

What can I tell you about Huntington?
Not much which is a shame particularly as I visited his house. You can see Maeflower in his sumptuous personal library in his house which is separate to the actual H. Library itself.
I think Huntington had something to do with Railroads.
Anyway, he made a ton of money which he mainly spent on collecting art & books. He was lucky enough to buy the Gainsborough painting 'Blue Boy' for $700,000 from the Duke of Westminster which was the highest price paid for a painting at the time, 1922.
Apparently, the Brits were really cranky about Blue Boy being shipped off to America. Noel Coward wrote a song about it.

Here's a little man photographing Blue Boy.
 He apologised to me about blocking my view.
 I was v. gracious about it.

Here's Blue Boy's shoes.
And below is Maeflower at a pre-Xmas celebration. I do love her black hair band.

Finally finally, I'm cavalierly holding a real not Toy Coach bag that Marge found at the Salvation Army Depot in Thousand Oaks for $25.
Even though you can't tell from the photo, I was thrilled.
What a Christmas.
Hope yours was as good.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Accept the Good If You Can Possibly Bear It

You'll be glad to know that I actually got on & off the plane & arrived in Los Angeles with no loss of luggage although in spite of frantic efforts to rehydrate mid-flight, I'm sure I lost a ton of moisture along the way.
A wonderful thing was that my daughter Maeflower was already there.
Here she is with our great friend Netitia, a genuine Los Angelino about to enter the La Brea Tar Pits Museum. We were all gagging to see the skeletal remains of poor creatures who were trapped in the tar pits along the side of Wilshire Boulvard millions of years ago, although it wasn't called that back then.
I was v. distressed to see concrete sculptures in the Actual Pits of a little Elephanta Family where the Mum was trapped in the Tar whilst the Dad & Baby were helplessly looking on on safe ground. It was heartbreaking, but not heartbreaking enough  to stop us blithely skipping into the Museum Gift Shoppe & browsing their collection of authentic Dire Wolf Souvenir Skulls & Bison Tusks.

 I'm standing in front of an Poor Ancient Bison who had become stuck in the tar.
Poor Thing.
Luckily, I left a small Capsule Wardrobe behind from my last visit so I was able to wear this Gap Jacket purchased for ten bucks in January from the Jewish Women's League Thrift Shoppe in Santa Monica.
Sadly, I had packed my backs rather recklessly with a whole slew of slightly grubby black clothes left over from My Winter, so the jacket was a bit of a Lifesaver & certainly cheered me up as I made my way through the Anamatronic Death Scenes on show in the main hall of the Museum.

Here is Maeflower & Netitia talking rather earnestly to a Volunteer Docent who informed us that every time a new carpark is being excavated in the Hancock Park area of Los Angeles, new Prehistoric Carcases are found & dug out & then quickly put in large boxes for later perusal so as not to disturb the smooth passage of Carpark Construction.

Maeflower is standing in front of a whole mess of Dire Wolf Heads.
What a Name. Dire Wolf. I wonder why?
She's wearing a little wool scarf that I bought in Rajasthan in 1987 in a desperate bid to avoid the freezing cold. Who knew that India could be cold?

I was surprised at how jaunty some of these skeletons looked considering that they were stuck in  tar so long ago. This Highly Polished one looks like it's just about to go for a brisk walk.

At the end of our Museum Stop my BFF Marge arrived just in the nick of time to carry us off to the next part of the day. She too is looking v. jaunty in a v. interesting mix of colours - a bright pink jacket with a thinly striped top in shades of Light Orange.
It looks fab.

It's a shame that you can't see those Upsetting Concrete Sculptures of the Elephanta Family in the picture above. They are right behind us.  I'm pulling a face but Marge is keeping to her usual High Standards that she learned long ago at the June Dally-Watkins School of Modelling & Deportment.

Later, we ended up back at Joanne's, the Craft Store in Thousand Oaks  where we purchased a range of Xmas Ornaments that were up to 70% off. We didn't pay more than $3 for anything including these adorable crocodiles & flamingos.  Earlier, we had stopped off at Barneys in Beverly Hills where almost the exact same ornaments were selling for $62.
Oooo, I must have a brief rant about Barneys. I was almost quivering with excitement as we drove into it's beautifully lit carpark which made me feel like I was arriving at the Oscars. But once we got inside it was a different story. As soon as the lift doors opened,  a whole slew of over-eager Sales Clerks (to use an American expression) immediately pounced on Marge & me & began telling us what was wrong with our skin. We refrained from informing  them that what was actually wrong with our skin was that we were sixty. Marge let them pat her skin which apparently is the only way to touch your face.
 It seems that all these years of wiping & tugging have reeked senseless havoc.
Who knew?

So what I need to do is what the sign above that I spied for eighteen bucks at the Los Angeles County Museum Gift Shoppe  is telling me to do.
It's quite hard especially if you were brought up by a Relentlessly Complaining Mother.

Marge & Me love Matching Cuffs. 
Here's some pink sparkly ones that we spied at Forever 21 in the Thousand Oaks Mall.
The clothes are dismal but the Jewels are Wonderful.

I'm trying on black diamante bangles that I ultimately decided not to buy.
Pourquoi, you may ask?
I thought perhaps that were a little showy.
Even though I'm kind of a devotee of Joan Rivers, I don't really want to look like her.
Who would?

After filling up on F21's Fab Jewels, I scampered across to Charming Charlie which had to be the largest shoppe I had ever seen of Costume Jewelry. I left empty handed after five minutes.

We were stunned by the oversized Xmas Baubles on a tree in Macys.

Lastly, do look at the way Maeflower & Netitia Xmased-Up Marge's house while we were at The Mall.
A large plaster statue of an alluring Forties Siren whose known as Holly looks amazing in a Santa Hat & Xmas Lights. Or do we call them Holiday Lights, I wonder?
Actually, Holly reminds me of my Least Favourite Holiday Song that has been blearing from every shop & Mall since I arrived.
Santa Baby. You know the one. Breathless Horny Female Sings  massive come onto Santa.

Monday, December 17, 2012


Here I am at the gate at Sydney Airport en route to Los Angeles.
You can see the security man behind me which adds a certain charming authenticity to this v.v. brief  blog entry.
The challenge is, can I get through this in approximately ten minutes which is the estimated time until boarding?
I am struggling with concentration because of the incessant announcements urgently pleading Rogue Passengers to board their Air China flight which is waiting for them. What the hell are these people doing? Spraying themselves with Chanel in the Duty Free which is just what I've done, only I've sprayed myself silly with Dior Diorrescence. Chanel smells like Cat's Wee to my v. thin nose.
I'm wearing a Toy Chanel scarf with a Mela Purdie little black dress which is more like a Top, footless tights & loafeers with a gold chain across the top. Pearl earrings.
Discreet. Confident. At Ease.
What a joke.
At least I've got an aisle seat. It's fourteen hours. I wonder if James Bond's Skyfall will be showing on my little individual screen. I've already seen it & its about twenty minutes too long. I thought that the villain would never die. But I didlike the look of Daniel Craig except when he removed some nasty shrapnel from one of his pecs.
Just heard one of the Virgina Australia staff saying that it's a full flight.
Time to Board.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Oh! I Longed to Live a Life Like That!

As I type, I'm sitting in a v. steamy classroom while  Year 7 (not my own class) are watching a film on The Nativity featuring a v.v. young Mary who looks about twelve.
 I was shocked.
But I've just been assured by a learned member of the class that in fact, the film is 'historically accurate' because Mary actually was thirteen when Jesus was born.
Who knew?

What I really want to talk about is to tell you about an Art Exhibition that I'm in this evening in Sydney, opening at 7 pm. I know it's a bit far, particularly if you're from Outta Town, like Canberra or Berkeley or perhaps somewhere in Indiana, but I just thought that I'd let you knows it's on.
I don't know much about the show, except that it's organised by a friend of mine, Kim Holten & that my fellow exhibitors are also Women.
Over the past few weeks I've been busily painting these little paintings of  Angst-Ridden Schoolgirls who of course bear little or no resemblance to the Happily-Well-Adjusted Ones I teach In Real Life.

Ever since I was a young child, I was obsessed with stories of English Schoolgirls who all merrily boarded the train together at the beginning of each term loaded with hockey sticks & Tuck Boxes full of  fruit cake & Orange Fizz & Jellied Eel which they scoffed down on their way to some OldeyWorldey Boarding School with leaded paned windows & ivy growing up the walls.
These Independent Young Things never seemed to be particularly bothered by Interfering Parents & in fact the only adults that featured in these stories were: The Stern But Fair Headmistress,
 the Mysterious French Teacher
amp; the Bullying Games Mistress who may be doing something unpleasant like smuggling on the side.
 And perhaps the Kindly Matron who bathed their wounds when they were hit in the shins by Verity, The Resentful Prefect on the lacrosse field.

Oh, I longed to live a life like that!
In my World there were far too many Meddlesome Adults ruining everything - Fascistic Parents featuring an O'erbearing Mother who used to hit me over the back of the head if she caught me licking my knife during dinner. Hateful Nuns who hit us on the palms of our outstretched hands if we got a word wrong in the Daily Spelling Bee. Dyspeptic Nun music teachers who rapped us over the knuckles if we hit a wrong note. Not to mention the Mad Mother Superior  who called me a 'Supine Spineless Jellyfish' just because I wouldn't dob on my friends. I was quite shocked when, after Superior Nun called me that, I ran to the dictionary to look up the word 'supine' to discover that it meant 'reclining'. I guess if you're a jellyfish you're always lying down.
The Schoolgirls in those stories were never bothered with such things.
Nay - they were far too busy planning Midnite Feasts in the Dormitory or hunting for ghosts or smugglers in the Medieval Ruins that were conveniently located next to the school.

Anyway,I like to think that the Schoolgirls in My Paintings are those Schoolgirls.

But I've just looked at them again & I've realised that they are not.
Sadly, they're just like Me.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Every Woman Has a Story

I can't remember the last time I uploaded a video. But I'm uploading one now.
I made it myself & it was shown tonite at the school's Annual 'Snippets' Film Festival.
I'm not exactly sure if you could call it a film because in it no one actually moves or speaks.
It's just a series of still images which are collaged photos of students that I've taken at various events over the years with backgrounds I made.
It only goes for three minutes of so.
Why not watch it?

Monday, November 5, 2012

Please Don't Touch My Beetroot Stained Top

 Hello. It's Monday nite.
 I'm sitting on my couch desperate to hop into bed. But before I do, let me v. briefly walk you through My Exciting World which is full of boxing in the Park, making unexpected finds on the side of the road, cooking with Kale & other ingredients whose exotic names are too too difficult to pronounce, wearing animal prints to school & discovering that half the staff room are also in various shades of Animal Print, watching Joan Crawford films & marvelling at her jewel like appearance & lastly, finding intriguing notes left by Disgruntled Students in the classroom.
As Obama often says, "What a Week!"
BTW, talking of Obama, I have been closely following the US Election & am now  sick to the stomach worrying that Michelle's Arms won't get re-elected.
 I wonder if the Obama's are also sick to the stomach with worry? I can't imagine it. Not that I know them personally.
By way of contrast, look above at My Arms taken last thursday after a strenuous session at Boot Camp at Yarranabee Park in Sydney. I'm proudly holding up a vintage game of Chinese Checkers that Madge, a fellow Boot Camper spied on the side of the road.

Note my Authentic Head Sweat Band that I'd wrapped around my wrist instead of my head because I feared that it might give me a headache. You can never be too careful, can you?

Next up is part of last nite's Sunday Nite Dinner Extravanganza. As anyone who knows me even remotely knows, every sunday nite I host a dinner that is part-eating & part viewing. So far, we've viewed three series of Made Men (I couldn't help but keep in that delicious typo), one hateful series of True Blood & two series of Boardwalk Empire. Currently, we're on to The Newsroom which by the way is compelling but no one seriously behaves like that at work even in a newsroom.
As part of the eating section of the nite,  Every week I try to include some ingredient that I've never used before.
Last week it was frozen broad beans that I microwaved before throwing in a salad of fresh asparagus, mint & fetta.
Last nite it was a Salad of Kale & Quinoa which was a Brand New Donna Hay recipe taken from her new Recipe Book.
Doesn't it look scrumptious in the picture above, particularly with AJ's hands lovingly tossing it?

 It was disgusting.
If I were a Tweeter, I would have Tweeted Donna to tell her. But I'm not. So I won't.
Look above at the enormous quantity of Quinoa tantalisingly prounounced Kinwaa that Donna said to cook. It was waay too much. Even if you were obsessed with the stuff you're not going to want to shovel in vats of it in one sitting.
I must admit that I was a Quinoa Virgin until now. To me it tastes like soft but still Slightly Crunchy Pebbles. Not bad.
But don't get me started on the Kale which I believe is v. popular with Cows. Apparently, they love it.

 Now to Joan who I adore & I don't care about the coathangers anyway. I took this little snap of her from the TV last saturday nite. It was taken from a gorgeous looking film called 'Ice Follies of 1939'. I only watched the last ten minutes of it on mute so I'm not sure if Joan actually Ice Skated in it, but she looks so wonderful in that outfit & the large green cocktail ring is to die for.
Oh, I ache for those Eyebrows!

 Here I am today trudging home from from school in a Terrible Wind. That's why I have my eyes closed & my hair is a trifle messy. But I'm not one to complain particularly in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
My black & white striped Napoleon bag is my new Lunch Pail. Note I'm daintily holding it because it contained the remnants of lunch which by 4pm was smelling a little off.
The cerise shoes are Bruno Maglis from 'Bednobsetc' & so is the dress which sports a New York Label. Am desperately channelling Anna Dello Russo with the Big Blingy Toy Gold & Diamond necklace with a large lion's head pendant.

 And now to the Mysterious Phenomenon of Coworkers Wearing the Same Colours/Patterns to work on the same day. This is a v. well documented phenomenon in Our Staff room. e.g - everyone comes to work wearing , Shades of Grey, dare I say on a tuesday like we planned it in advance. And then maybe Shades of Beige the next day. And then on Friday, everyone's in Black.
It's like Magic.
Here I am above with the Beautiful Rosetta Stone who is wearing Animal Print pants & I'm wearing Animal Print tights. Talk about being On the Same Page. At least Sartorially.

 You can get a closer look at my animal print tights in this photo above which shows me flat out miming someone furiously typing on an imaginary keyboard. God I work hard.

I'm leaving you with this Important Message which perhaps you can barely read. And neither can I.
It was in a classroom. A student had spilled beetroot over her Sports Uniform top which I think would have actually improved it but she clearly didn't think so. So, She tried to rinse the stain out &  laid it out to dry on a desk with a sign saying, 'Please don't touch beetroot stained top'.
Someone who was clearly Not in a Good Mood that morning placed a Passive Aggressive Smiley Face on the note with the words, 'Please don't tell me How to Live my Life'  underneath.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

First World Middelaged Arms

 Last saturday, I was thrilled to receive a Hard Copy of  the previous week's New York Times Style Section from The Ex-School Nurse who had freshly returned from The Large Apple. She especially saved it for me because in it were plenty of Bill Cunningham photos which he took at some Big Gala Event that I would have ached to go to & Ex-SN knows what a big fan I am of Bill who is in his eighties.
Actually, I'm a Big Fan of anyone older than me who is:
1. Still Working & loving it.
2. Still has Working Brain.
3. Remembers to Wash Regularly.
4. Not in Nursing Home.

Over a bowl of Dill Infused Canned Tuna, I devoured the whole Style Section from cover to cover.
I particularly pounced on an article that looked like it was going to be about Michelle Obama's Arms, one of my absolute favourite topics.
Sadly, it wasn't .
 It was really  about  a Middleaged Journalist  complaining about the Saggy State of her arms & blaming Michelle & Her Magnificent Arms for the recent trend in Going Armless. Or perhaps the correct term is Going Sleeveless.
I personally haven't noticed this trend but I must admit that I do take the opportunity, weather permitting, to Go Sleeveless as much as possible. I like to think of it as a little prize for going to cboot camp every week & boxing myself into a frenzy. Not to mention all the Downward Dogs & Planks I try to do at the gym as well.
God, I sound amazing.

But then as Synchronicity would have it, I looked at last friday's Classroom Wardrobe Photo & noticed my arms. I was shocked. Perhaps even fascinated. You can see them for yourself in the first photo. They are definitely NOT saggy, but they seem to be Strangely Bulbous.
But rather than whine about it, I decided to come up with A Solution.
I hope you like it.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

OMG, I've Got So Many First World Problems, It's No Wonder That I Have to Go to the Therapist Twice a Week.

I'm speaking to you in Italian because the first photo is of the Italian Style Icon Anna Dello Russo.
You might have heard of her. But it's no reflection against you if you haven't. After all, it's not as if she's Proust.
Or Sartre. Or even Jackie Collins.
Anna is just the Editor-at-V.Large of Vogue Nippon.
And V. Large she is.
She's Everywhere.
Photographed at Every Fashion Week Everywhere in the First World.
 Photographed in her second apartment in Milan which only her clothes & accessories live in. She lives next door or down the hall.
Photographed in the street supposedly walking her dog like she is the photo below which I hope & pray that you'll eventually get to.
And almost unrecognisably photographed/photoshopped to promote her exclusive line of O'er the Top Jewels for H&M which appeared for about five minutes in the shoppes & online a week or so ago but was sold out within the first five minutes.
Sadly, I was in a Geographically Impossible Situation at the time  as H&M couldn't be bothered opening a store at the Bottom O'er the World where I live even though we got a Topshop last week in Sydney which I haven't gone to because I'm too old for shorts & that's all Topshop seems to sell.
And I didn't even hear about Anna's Jewels until my BFF Marge told me by phone from Thousand Oaks Ca last saturday. But of course by then it was too late. Nothing was left.
 It was just like the recent Coach Warehouse Clearance Sale on eBay which, try as I might, I was completely locked out of.
Both experiences were traumatic & have left rather huge scars that I hope will heal in time.
But then, The Duchess, who merrily sits next to me in The Staffroom sent me a little film clip called First World Problems Read by Third World Kids.

Here's Anna again walking the streets of Milan with her dog who loves fashion as much as she does but chooses to go naked. Weird.
Like millions of other Wannabe Women, I'm obsessed with Anna & have been spending the past few days desperately trying to copy her while I stand in front of the Whiteboard in my classroom.
You can see the results below.

I wore this thrifted from 'BednobsEtc' paisley 'Charlie Brown' wraparound dress yesterday & spent most of the day when I wasn't in the classroom standing sideways in front of the mirror in the staff toilets trying to work out if I looked fat in it. Sadly, I couldn't come up with an answer.
But look how I'm totally dripping in bling, just like Anna!
The large Egyptian Necklace inspired many of my colleagues to make comparisons with Cleopatra.
Wrong Woman.

And then there was the thrifted from 'Bednobsetc' American 'Max & Co' dress with a rather unfortunate high waist that is drawn in with a bow that again made me wonder about the possibility of Abdominal Weight Gain, a growing problem that can lead to Heart Problems in the Middleaged.
Not that I have any Body Image Issues.
If you look closely, you can see that I am wearing a Friendly Elephant Bracelet that is rather uncannily like something from Anna's H&M Collection. Only it isn't.

In the picture above I look like I'm standing in a moodily-lit niteclub instead of The Classroom. In fact, I'm not too fond of harsh lighting in class as it's v. ageing. I would prefer it if my students think I'm years younger.
The dress is yes, another thrifted from BN's, Diane von Furstenberg silk wrap dress. My only concern is that I might be accused by the 'experts' on 'Fashion Police' of being a little too 'Matchy Matchy' with the pink jewels. And it wasn't even Pink Ribbon Day.

And here I am today registering Mock Surprise in yet another Thrifted silk Bednobsetc dress.
I'd say that this is my Least Like Anna Look O'er the Week even though if you look v. closely  next to those Big Angry Pearls, I am wearing a glomesh snake necklace with a magnetised head that I'm sure Anna would wear at a pinch.

During the recent School holiday, at my insistence, Trixie picked me up & drove me out to a Remote Suburb of Sydney so we could have Ikea's Famously Cheap Meatballs at one of their stores.
I had been told that The Famous Balls were going to be about $2. Sadly, they weren't.
They were $6.95. In a fit of pique, I had the salmon instead with a side order of salt & pepper squid which came to a total of $11.95.
Trixie obligingly took this photo before we entered the store. Can't you see that I'm quivering with anticipation? Note too, my Rarely-Used Vivienne Westwood patent leather handbag with the huge logo on it. I do hope that it isn't a little too 'Matchy Matchy' with the yet yet again thrifted (Yawn) Bednobs silk Trelise Cooper dress & the pink bangle that has text on it that says 'Well Behaved Women Rarely Make History'.

After lunch we had to go to my absolute favourite Jewel shop, Diva in the Mall.
Oh, I ache for Anna to design her v. own jewel line for Diva. I'd buy the lot.
When inside the shop, I asked the delightful assistant, Sylvia if I could take her photo. As you can see, she cheerfully obliged, telling me after that I'd 'made her day'.
For one brief millisecond, I felt like The Sartorialist.

I just loved how Sylvia had artfully piled on all these wonderful jewels. Even better than Anna.

Enough of Outfits.
Let's bring on the Homewares!
Look above. It's my daughter Maeflower having a whale of a time at the Canberra Tip  buying a whole mess of mismatched dinner plates which is my new Homewares Obsession!
We bought a big box full including a set of Pyrex mixing bowls (remember Pyrex?) & a Corningware Casserole Dish with Glass Lid (remember Corningware?) for fifteen bucks the lot.
I felt like I'd won the lottery only I hadn't.

At this stage of the blog entry, I thought that it was time for a Cat Photo.
Here is Milash (not quite sure of the spelling as I'm not familiar with perhaps Slavic names), M.Flower's cat.

And back home on my Sunday Nite Dinnertable is a plate from the Canberra Tip. I've placed a Russian Doll serviette on top. Many of you may think that a Coca Cola dinner plate is rather Gross & Tasteless.
I'm not sure as the jury's still out on that one.
Note it is sitting on two placemats - the bottom one comes from Vietnam & it is made from rolled up pages from magazines. And the top one features birds & it's from Our Meatball Excursion to Ikea.

While we're still on homewares, look above at my new kitchen tableau featuring a v. detailed model of The Human Stomach that Maeflower bought for me. It was one of the Specials of the Week at Aldi.
I love it.

To add to the Mismatched Dinner Plate Theme, I found these wonderful stainless steel & plastic gingham complete cutlery set at yes, yawn, Bednobsetc last week. And also the little dish featuring an old photo of a Chinese person who I sadly suspect is Mao.
OMG, I've got soo many First World Problems, no wonder I have to go to the therapist twice a week!