Fashion Police

La Mode Australienne Apocalyptique

A while back,  I saw this rather fab ensemble in the Montcler window in Chamonix (the original post is here).


It’s so clear why the French lead the fashion world – they put together a totally ridiculous outfit and manage to make it covetable.

So,  at the beginning of winter in the southern hemispere, looked what turned up in the shops in Sydney:

Australian fashion

There’s clearly been a very antipodean take on the original French design, with the French influence being diluted and reworked as ‘Awkward Norwegian Party Troll’.

What do these 2 outfits say to us?

The French look is saying:  “je suis soignée;  the epitome of élégance ” as Mademoiselle shrugs and pouts à la Francaise, puffing noxious clouds of Sobranie into the atmosphere as her rat-like muppet dog pees on your mixed fibres Fair Isle legging.  Does she care?  Absolument pas.

The Australian version is asking: “does my bum look big in this hat?” (if you have to ask, the answer is always yes).

The luxe vision of dreamy, cream cashmere is replaced with the eye-watering horizontals (the horror, the horror) of Fair Isle.  Fair Isle is not a kind design, and it’s particularly unkind when stretched across the backsides and thighs of dumpy Australian tweens.

Another clue is that hat.  The French version has an almost Anna Karenina touch – it completes the sophistication of the outfit.  The Australian one says ‘look at me, I’m an idiot’.  

Is there some sort of fashion hate thing happening here?  Who would do this to young women?

Just asking.


Bags of Bones and Botox: Sydney Trophy Wives

Continuing my deep dive into Sydney’s social scene, Kathryn and I are at an arty event, hob-nobbing with the Eastern suburbs glitterati.   We’re having a coffee and chatting just before it’s due to kick off.  Three hookers walk in.

Kathryn turns round to see what I’m looking at and her inbuilt tart-o-meter readings go nuclear.  Setting her fashion laser to ‘death stare’, she analyses the feedback and pronounces ‘hmmm, the trophy wives have arrived’.

They enter the room in a gaggle (or maybe a goggle if you’re a bloke), lots of bare skin, manes of glossy, flicky hair, a bit of frou-frou happening on the fashion front and not much clothing per square inch – what there was SQUEEZED into tiny sizes (you weren’t kidding anyone – I was going to say ‘girls’ but that would have been inaccurate – ladies); casually expensive clothes chosen with a lot of care to look, umm, casually expensive.

Everything was pert and firm but they had the featureless, immobile faces – I’ve never seen botox en masse before.

The skinniest was clearly top tart; the emaciation hidden to some extent by fake tan. The others were wannabes; thin by proximity – except that never quite works does it?  It just ends up like ‘who’s the heifer standing next to the skinny chick?’

They spent their time looking around to see if anyone was looking at them, and competitively not eating.

An interesting species to look at, but as a bloke I know put it, ‘like talking to a table’.

Zombies – Trifextra Weekend Challenge

This week’s challenge has a Halloween theme – write 33 words that are somehow related to a zombie sighting.

Even once she’d seen the photo, Sandra still didn’t get what all this zombie fuss was about.   She agreed though, that her new Target t-shirt did make her look a bit washed out.

I found this topic quite hard and didn’t think I’d be able to come up with anything – but once I’d sat down and started typing, all sorts of ideas came.

It’s a very good discipline – the sitting down, the thinking, the ‘letting the words come’  and the shaping.  Frustrating (it took me over an hour to get these 33 words) but also very enjoyable and worth it to actually finish something.

Fashion Faux Pas

The NSW Fashion Police responded to an emergency call out in Sydney’s CBD today after receiving reports of a woman seen degrading a pair of iconic Christian Louboutin heels in broad daylight.

Police confirmed “earlier today, an attempt was made to carry off the ‘Urban Trollop’ look but that the accused was in fact modelling ‘East German Olympic Shot-Putter in Drag’.A shocked witness said “It was horrible”. 

A Fashion Police spokesperson commented “this look is wrong on so many levels.  The accused is in flagrant breach of the crucial arse to ankle ratio, plus, we have sufficient evidence to prove that she is wearing shoes bigger than her head”.

Fashion industry sources confirmed that ‘Urban Trollop’ can be a particularly tricky look to pull off as it sits midway between ‘Inner City Skank’ and ‘Suburban Pole Dancer’.

The look relies heavily on irony, as in ‘I may seem cheap but I’m actually really classy’.

Police noted that “unfortunately, the required level of classiness was clearly absent in this case”.

The accused’s mother publicly disowned her daughter, stating ”she does the same thing with Jimmy Choos. I’m so ashamed”.

Monsieur Louboutin could not be reached for comment.

Chamonix – A Fashion Forward Moment

You saw it here first.  A sneak preview of what we’ll all be wearing next winter in Sydney:Love the thigh-length hairy yeti boots.  Love the matching, stuffed-dead-animal hats (taxidermy is so hot right now).  The puffa jackets are in tweed – a quirkily French note.  Or perhaps it’s ironic?  Who knows with the French.

As for the leggings, get your knitting needles out and start casting on.  We’re deep into extreme knitting territory here – they look like they’re in a fine jersey but they’re really knitted; knitted as in ‘knit one purl one’.  

There are 3 obvious design flaws:

(i) high risk of frostbite in the nethers – they’re wide open to every sub-zero draught and snow flurry

(ii)  there’s no handbag – where can I put my Gauloises, my credit cards, my lip gloss, my Mars Bar and my small, yappy dog?  I could shove them all down the front of the leggings – nice and warm so Flaw No 1 would be fully addressed, but could ruin the look

(iii) saggy gusset syndrome; after 5 minutes sitting down, you’ll look like you’ve got a wet nappy on when you stand up again.   Saggy gussets lead to chafing issues.  Nasty.

This outfit will look terrific on anyone who’s 1.8m tall, a size 2 or less and essentially stationary.  And French of course.  DON’T attempt this look if you don’t meet the minimum requirements. 

Otherwise you’ll look like a furball the cat threw up.

My Estee Lauder Encounter (nothing to do with running)

Kathryn had had a makeover at Estee Lauder.  I was too late to book but she said they would do a 2 minute makeover if I asked.

Having decided that eyeliner is Just What I Need Right Now to Make My Life Perfect, I trotted up to the shops and hit the EL counter in high anticipation of a premier experience.

There was no-one there except a late 50s-ish EL person with a bit of Hammer horror going on – lipstick overdrawn round her lips, randomly applied blusher and way too much eye make up which had become rather smudged after a long day spent on very high heels, which must have been murder on her corns.

I said that my friend had had a makeover yesterday and that she’d mentioned they were offering 2 minute make overs.  She looked at me as though I was completely stupid and didn’t say anything.  So I asked ‘are you’?  She said ‘what?’.

The voice in my head said ‘walk away right now ’.

We finally got some joint understanding on what a 2 minute make over might look like (eyeshadow, eyeliner, mascara) and she got started. She didn’t look too happy though.

But I’ll give her this: once she got going, she was very enthusiastic. The eyeshadow went on like she was painting the side of the Queen Mary. The mascara took aaaaggggeeessss to apply but didn’t seem to make any difference, as my eyes had disappeared under all the eyeshadow.

Then we were onto the piece de resistance, the eyeliner.  She was wearing some herself – it was trowelled on like the road markings down the Hume Highway so I had an inkling of what was coming.

I didn’t want to look in the mirror. I wasn’t going to look like the the picture of Liz Hurley that was unfortunately beside me.

She said ‘what do you think’?  She was obviously pleased with her work and I didn’t want to be rude, so said that I didn’t think it really worked for me.

She looked disappointed.  I left without buying anything and after asking her to remove it all.

It wasn’t until I spoke to one of the Bobbi Brown girls that I realised that this poor woman wasn’t actually a make up artist, she just rang stuff up on the till. But because no-one else was there, she was trying to be helpful.  I felt terrible.

A lesson learned on both sides I think (definitely on mine).