Tuesday, February 28, 2012

A Philosophy de Bijou

 Hello & Welcome to Me.
But where do I begin?
Do I start with telling you what I'm actually doing & why I'm doing it in the first three photos (& sadly, it's not having a facial) ?
Or, do I start with  what I thought about last nite's Oscar Red Carpet & which dress I personally would wear?
Actually, none of them. Imagine me walking or perhaps, stumbling into the classroom in Armani Prive or stupid Marchesa looking like an Elderly Feather Duster? (If you want to see what I mean, look at a pic of Kirsten Wiig) & holding a silly bead-encrusted Judith Leiber handbag the size of a pill box (I mean, where would I put my iPhone & my Whiteboard Markers?) & not to mention, the Mandatory Manolos, or perhaps Jimmy Choos.
Or perhaps I could start with a Loud Complaint about the unbearably hot & humid weather we're finally having at the supposed end of summer. Today was 33degrees celcius & tomorrow is Officially the End of Summer. Trixie thinks that the weather will begin to get less humid. No it won't. It'll keep on like this for Months & months.

Nay, I'm not going to start with any of those Topics.
Instead, I'm going to Walk you through my Current Jewellry Collection.
But before I do that, let me tell you My Philosophy de Bijou:
1. I don't really lust after Expensive Jewels as long as I can get the same thing as a Fake. (e.g. I almost bought at Diva for five bucks a brilliant copy of The Duchess of Cambridge's engagement ring which of course was originally was worn by her Mother-in-Law, The Princess of Wales)
2. Apart from a few old rotting diamond rings left to me by Dead Relatives, I don't own any 'Good Jewelry'. And I don't care. Je ne regret rien spelt badly.
3. I regard Swarovski Jewelry as twee & loathe the idea of their tiny crystals adorning anything I would wear. I would not, however, criticise you if you liked them. It's just a matter of personal taste.

4. My favourite price that I like to pay for a piece of jewellry is five bucks.  I rarely go above twenty.
5. My favourite jewelry shop in Australia is 'Diva' & it's sister shop, 'Lovisa' ; my favourite one in the US is the Stupidly Named Forever 21.
6. I love wearing bangles etc with text on them.
7. My favourite word on a bangle is 'Hope'. It says Everything as far as I'm concerned.
(A Brief Segue: As I type, I'm watching Maestro Daniel Barenboim play a Beethoven Concerto on TV & I'm marvelling at how a man with hands that look like Pig's Trotter's can produce such a beautiful sound)
8. I love Enamel bracelets. They remind me of 'Hermes'.
9. I love wearing lots of the same things together. Take today, for instance. I wore three black rings. And two black chandelier earrings. And two black many- stranded necklaces. Sounds like A Gothic Nightmare. But it wasn't.
10. I like to make my own necklaces & the occasional earring from bits & pieces that I've gathered.

I'm sure I've got many many things to add to my Philosophy de Bijou but I can't be bothered numbering any more points.
Instead, look above at me last week holding a Blueberry Muffin, sadly Not at a resort but at a three day retreat I supervised for Year 11. I'm wearing one of my Homemade Necklaces that you can hardly see. How frustrating! Oh well, you'll just have to take my word for it that it a Wonderful Glittering Piece - all  toy gold & diamantes & fake gold coins & enamel.
Note I'm wearing a v.v. layered look that I've been favouring lately - a Slightly Slutty Schaperelli Pink dress over a v. loose striped top all from 'Cotton On' with a fab pear (intentionally spelt that way) of a cross between Midnite & Electric Blue footless tights from 'Forever 21.
Ahhhhhh.......I do love the words, 'Midnite Blue'. It takes me back to the late sixties when I was desperate to wear a Midnite Blue Moire Velvet empire line gown to some revolting formal that I was going to with some Sweaty Youth.  In fact, I don't think I actually wore the dress. I think I maybe just drooled over it in 'Seventeen' Magazine. And maybe I didn't even go to the formal.

And here I am again at the end of the retreat wearing more jewels that you can hardly see: - a totally wonderful silver fish pendant I bought at Forever 21 for three bucks & some rather tough leather studded wristbands but with the 'Hope' bangle thrown in to Soften the Look. Note the little diamantes on the heels of my Sad Flats. Slightly reminds me of Paul Simon's song - Diamonds on the Souls of my Shoes.

I'm a Symphony of Wood in the photo above, taken just before I mounted the bus to attend the Opening School Mass. Look closely & you can see my Toy Hermes leatherlike Wristband from 'Lovisa', cut-out Leatherette Leaf Necklace & various wooden necklaces & bangles.

Lastly, look below. I'm standing next to a watertank at yesterday's Sweltering Annual Swimming Carnival at the Des Renford Aquatic Centre in a Treeless suburb of Sydney.
Note I am holding a tube of 'Kid's' Sunscreen that was  inexplicably Lavender Coloured. Sadly, due to the intense rays, the sunscreen was only Partially Successful. When I got home, to my great horror I realised that I had some sunburn just below my neck . Perhaps the large red beads acted as Sun Magnets.

I'm wearing a Clever Copy of a YSL ring, bought at 'Diva' for five bucks.

It's now teeteringly close to My Official Bedtime. I hope I can stop sweating before I hit the pillow.
Daniel Barenboim's Pig's Trotters are still going & are remarkably unsweaty unlike the rest of him.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Navy is the Magenta of Middleagedteacher's Wardrobe.

 Gidday. Or perhaps G'day. Or even G'day Mate.
I'm trying to Set the Mood for what is to come. Can you guess what it might be?
Yes, I'm presenting A Travelogue of a recent short trip I went on around Australia.
Actually, it was a Weekend in Canberra to visit my daughter Maeflower & her partner Russell.
BTW, unlike many Middleagedwomen, I have absolutely No Desire to travel around my Wonderful Sunburnt Country. Pourquoi, you may ask?
1. I'm not fond of Long Trips in the Car & a trip around Australia involves many of those.
2.In this country, Middleaged Travellers are known as 'Grey Nomads' & wear Baggy Shorts regardless of Gender. They drive large Caravans & park in scenic spots where,  at the end of the day they sit on  Banana Chairs & nibble long sticks of Cabanossi & Woolworth's Gherkin Dips & drink cask wine from a well-stocked esky.
I couldn't Wear the Shorts or Eat the Food or feel comfortable being called Grey Anything.
4. I like to be near places where I can get a decent coffee. Perhaps I'm a little out of touch, but I can't really imagine ordering a latte in the middle of the Nullabor Plain.

Anyway, scroll back to the beginning of the post & you'll see me in my Travelling Outfit. It was friday nite & I had just freshly arrived on the bus from Sydney. I'm wearing a little Navy tunic & a genuine vintage 'Chanel' scarf that sadly looks a little too much like something a Flight Attendant would wear.
Last time I wore this outfit was in Palm Springs about four weeks ago.

 On Saturday Morning, we sat off in their New Lime Green Honda to explore the sights.
Our first sight was The Big Merino at Goulburn. For those people who are unfamiliar with this type of animal, let me explain.
It is a Sheep. And a rather imposing sheep it is too. Perhaps even, An Other Worldly Sheep, for on closer inspection, a rather piercing light shone from one of its eyes.

  We appeared to be the only sightseers. And for good reason too. I mean, who really wants to be bothered visiting a Big Block of Cement in the shape of a Sheep?
Well, we did.
Anyway, I'm wearing More Navy Travelling Clothes: Yesterday evening's Navy Tunic under a baggy striped tee shirt bought NEW (!) from Cotton On under a thrifted Navy jacket with white piping.Bear in mind, Dear Reader that it is Supposed to be Summer.
Maeflower is wearing a fab tee shirt with I think a Recontextualising of Alice in Wonderland on it & skinny jeans.
 OMG, I love Navy. I just can't get enough of it. It was my Poor Dead Mother's favourite Look. She used to say  that navy made a woman look, 'Refined & Nice'.  Every time she said that I never thought that I was ever going to stop throwing up. But now, I'm totally the opposite. Perhaps Mum is manipulating me from The Grave.

 Next we visited The Saturday Market at Goulburn. I was totally captivated by the adorable look on the face of that little Pig.
And then I thought of Eating Bacon.

 One of the Market Shoppers was a lady with an intriguing tattoo on her back.
It said 'Supposedly'.
I was desperate to tap her on the shoulder & ask Why Why Why?
But I didn't.

 I'm sure that just about every Market in the Western World features those Plaid Bags & some form of Doll.

And then we went Country House Hunting.
Here's the inside of a creepy house we inspected which felt like a whole family had been slaughtered in the front room or at least had a really Unhappy Time in it for a few Generations. But we did like the Retro Wallpaper. But not enough to buy the house.
 Here's what Australia looks like Without Buildings.
I asked the Real Estate Agent if the Whistling/Rustling sound I could hear was coming from a nearby freeway.
He said it was just the trees.

 And then it was back to Canberra for a Multicultural Festival.
The best dressed were The Nigerians. They looked fab even though no one was wearing Navy.

 At the United Arab Emirates Stall, people queued for hours to have their photo taken in front of a modest poster of The World's Tallest Building.
We didn't.
 Exhausted from Our Outing, we arrived back at Maeflower's to admire her Almost Edible Balcony. Note the Almost Scary Aloe Vera plant which apparently is a Magnificent Healer for Sunburn but doesn't taste too good in a salad. Neither are the succulents.
Maeflower is wearing a magnificent dress bought on sale that v. day at Cotton On.
I totally love the Magenta part of the dress. And of course, Diana Vreeland once declared that 'Magenta is the Navy of India'.

 On sunday we had a Lite Cultural Experience by attending the Highly Hyped 'Renaissance' exhibition at the National Gallery. Here's what the front of the gallery looked like which is a Giant Blowup of a tiny tiny Bottecelli  that you almost needed a magnifying glass to see as well as a torch because the Gallery was so dark it was almost like a Nightclub. Although there were a few Titians & Bellinis, it was all a Bit Second Tier, as we kept on Loudly Saying.
OMG.....& another thing. I can't stand all those people traipsing around in these Blockbuster Shows with Loud Audio Equipment hanging off their ears. Just because they can't hear anything other than the Commentary, they forget that there are other people v. near to them whose personal space they need to respect.
Oh dear, I hope I'm not sounding like a Cranky Old Lady with really really pronounced Naso-Labial Folds & a downturned mouth. Quelle horreur!

Finally, we visited the James Turrell Skyspace exhibit at the entrance to the gallery. In case you're wondering, we're looking up at a round opening to the sky, but really we're just showing off our outfits - both freshly bought from 'Cotton On'. Note the Navy in my outfit.
No, this is not a Paid Advertisement for 'Cotton On'.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Hopefully, I'm Not Turning into Miss Havisham

Poor Me.
Last wednesday just before I was about to begin my almost first lesson of the year, in my excitement I slipped on two dainty little steps at the entrance to my classroom, twisted my foot & landed into the arms of a poor unsuspecting student who managed to save me from a v. serious accident.
I was immediately placed on a chair & attended to by caring members of the Sporting Department who have all had Long Histories With Nasty Injuries & are World Experts on Bandaging & Iceing (not cakes but Body Parts)
Of course, it was only a few minutes before other Concerned Members of Staff suddenly appeared to Gawk at my Foot. I think that they were Slightly Disappointed because although it was starting to Swell, there was nothing particularly Ghoulish to see. No blood, no disembodied body parts. And I wasn't even crying.
 I went to the doctor. He must have x-ray eyes because he just looked at the foot which by now had been expertly bandaged & said that since there were now Strict Rules about Not Radiating the Population I didn't need an x-ray.
I had the rest of the day off, but desperate for attention, I limped back to school the next day.
Note, a return to All Black in the Classroom with a thrifted lace'Wayne Cooper' slightly A line dress in the first photo, above. I just couldn't be bothered wearing anything bright & summery. And anyway, it was raining. What's new?

The other Nasty Side Effect of having a Sprained Foot is that I am condemned to wearing Ballet Flats. Sadly, there is nothing Slightly Slutty about  Ballet Flats even if they are genuine YSLs, which the ones above are. Perhaps on Kate Moss. 
Note my outfit, above. I'm wearing one of my Thrift Shop Finds from Palm Springs - the Michael Kors Jacket made from what appears to be Magic Linen - in spite of my Strict Regimen of No Ironing, there's still no sign of creasing.

As the weekend approached, I still managed to hobble about & meet all my Social Engagements. Here I am standing outside a local bar/restaurant that was too repellent to go into because it was absolutely chockablock full of Young Women in Enormously High Heels having Hen's Nites.
Instead, my friends & me went to a new Mexican Restaurant, Barrio Chino in Kings Cross where we ferociously gobbled up dainty Soft Shell Crab Soft Tacos & later Ice Cream Burritos.

I'm wearing perhaps a rather Strange Combination of many layers -
1. thrifted early nineties 'Jaegar jacket with  huge Shoulder Pads that I  unceremoniously ripped out before I wore it;
2. a little spotted tunic dress that I actually bought new at 'Cotton On';
3. a thrifted 'David Lawrence blouse that I sadly spilt Soft Shell Crab all down the front & now I will have to throw out because not only can I not iron, but I can't remove Stains;
4. loads of Toy Jewels - Toy Enamel & Sapphire Bracelets from 'Forever 21, Pasadena, a Toy Gold necklace that says 'Hope' & a Toy Gold Choker that my friend Marge bought in Prague twenty three years ago & kindly passed on to me.

As I type & watch TV on mute at the same time, I'm reminded of some of my Favourite Things:
1. Emily Dickinson's 'Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul....'
2. Jo Malone's Basil & Verbena Living Cologne. If you think that wearing Basil Perfume would make you smell like a Big Bowl of Pesto Pasta, think again. It is totally the Smell of Heaven.
Sadly, I don't own my own bottle. I've just tested it.
3. Charles Dickens. It's some Big Birthday of his. Maybe his 200th or something. I just love all the Nasty & Sad & Lovely Characters like Mr Bumble the Beadle, Uriah Heep, Lady Dedlock & of course, Miss Haversham who I sincerely hope I'm not turning into.
4. Queen Elizabeth II who just celebrated her 60th anniversary in an unspeakable hat  that looked a little like a felt Chamber Pot. But what Devotion to Duty!
5. Home Made Ice cream made by AJ using my daughter Maeflower's Ice Cream Maker.
5. Julie Andrews singing 'My Favourite Things' to those try-hard Von Trapp Kids in The Sound of Music. Who can forget, 'raindrops on roses & whiskers on kittens, white copper kettles & warm woolen mittens'?