Fashion and shopping, Melbourne style

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Entries in funny (143)

Tuesday
Nov272018

An Absolute Blast!

Eeeek! It’s getting close to that time of year! Yes, that’s right, I’m talking about the big Christmas costume party at my workplace. Every year there is a different theme, and every year everyone goes all out – I work at a theatre, so everyone is on their mettle, and the pressure is on.

This year the theme is the 1980s, inspired by our final play of the year which is set in the 80s. But I can’t reveal what I’m going as this year (no spoilers!) so instead I shall relive my day of glory as Barbarella, for which I won an award in 2013.

The theme was the 1960s (not to be confused with last year’s science-fiction theme when I went as the Queen of Naboo), and I quickly chose Barbarella for a character. It was more difficult to choose the costume, not because there were so many, but because they were so skimpy and NSFW!

The picture above was my inspiration, partly because I already owned a silver metal mesh top (of course I do), and I set about obtaining the other accoutrements, including a black mesh body-stocking (which made it difficult to go to the bathroom), skirt, boots, and wig, all bought on eBay, and last but not least, a laser-blaster. I made that myself from a giant toy water-gun. (My cousin, who I am with in the third photo of the slideshow) went as Tippi Hedren in Hitchcock’s classic film, The Birds.)

When you scroll down below, you will see my cousin and I pulling the obligatory faces (starting with some Blue Steel) for a photobooth strip – we did have an absolute blast!

Photos: December 2013

Tuesday
Nov202018

Apple of My Eye

Anyone ever watched the slow disintegration and decay of an apple core? It slowly turns brown, and eventually withers up into a bit of detritus. That’s kinda what happened to my old iMac, finally. The other week I tried to post a story, and I couldn’t even access the writing pane (what a pain). And today I was eating a Pink Lady apple and looked down at it to find half a wormhole. True story; not a metaphor.

Anyway, fortunately I already had a new iMac sitting in a box on my loungeroom floor, waiting for me to get off my lazy ass and set it up. Circumstance forced me into action last week, and I’ve spent days downloading new software, transferring data from the old dinosaur, deleting monstrously ugly fonts (the worms in this Garden of Eden) and the like. And oh how I love my new iMac! It connects to the internet and does stuff.

It just so happens that I can combine this love of Apples with my love of hats – this is what I call some kind of serendipitous happenstance! – and give you in homage a velvet and satin 1940s doll hat featuring an APPLE. Yes indeed. (I just pulled that one out of my hat!)

It just so happens that I can combine this love of Apples with my love of hats …

Ahem. I spotted this darling topper on eBay a couple months ago and found it too irresistible not to pluck it out of cyberspace. This type of hat is called either a “doll” or “toy” hat, the main feature being that it is miniature. These little hats were a popular style in the 1940s, and ranged from simple to very decorative, made from many different materials and featuring all kinds of trimmings, with or without half or full face veils.

Toy hats were often worn on a fun, jaunty angle, particularly tilting forward over the forehead, and were attached usually with hatpins. This hat has two tiny combs inside, but I don’t have enough hair to attach them to, so I’m waiting for some wig clips to arrive in the mail and I will sew them inside the crown. And then, she’ll be apples!

Thus, the only logical conclusion we can arrive at is that there are both good apples, and bad apples!

Photo: November 2018

Wednesday
Oct312018

Helloween!

While I don’t – along with many of my compatriots – actually celebrate Halloween, I am getting into the ‘spirit’ of things with this little spooky series of photos taken in the installation 1000 Doors, by Christian Wagstaff and Keith Courtney, at the 2018 Melbourne International Arts Festival.

The ticket for entry was a tiny and quaint brass key, which made me feel a bit like Alice. Laid out like a maze of doors in a house of horrors, the installation was complete with dilapidated walls, crumbling wallpaper, vintage furniture and Bakelite telephones, the smelly carpet of a seedy hotel, and a myriad mysterious vintage photographs littering every surface.

It was a lot of fun to traipse through, and the only thing that would have made it better and spookier was if we had been able to go late at night without the crowds of people – but this was a popular installation and there was no hope of that. For the occasion, I am wearing a vintage 1940s hat, and a Diane von Furstenberg dress bought in a thrift store.

I enjoyed hamming it up a little for these photos, and must confess in the last frame I had in mind Freddy’s tongue from one of the Elm Street nightmares. I was pretty young when I saw that scene, and ran away from the tv shuddering. Answering a telephone is akin to opening the door to the creepy cellar!

Happy Halloween.

Photos: October 2018. With thanks to my friend Rapunzel for taking them.

Monday
Oct152018

The Cartwheel Hat

Now that the warm weather is here at last (hurrah!), I am already thinking, “Now, how can I cover up to prevent sunburn?” Big hats are the answer! I own a lot of big cartwheels, as very wide brimmed hats are known. The origin of the name is obvious, but they began to be very popular in the Edwardian era, in the years prior to WWI.

This hat I am wearing is actually quite wide-brimmed – wider than it seems in the picture, but, when you scroll down and see the next hat you it will seem quite paltry by comparison.

Now THIS is a cartwheel hat! I think it is as big as an actual cartwheel. It is woven from a very sturdy grass, and the edges are wicker. It’s quite heavy and unwieldy to wear, as well as uncomfortable on the forehead, which makes me suspect it was never meant to be worn, or perhaps it was a theatre prop. It decorates the wall in my bedroom.

One of the problems with cartwheel hats is that there is a lot of area that can easily catch the wind, and the usual thin elastic attached to the inside of the brim of most hats is not enough to keep it safely on one’s head. A ribbon is a better option, as the cartwheel has.

So, is this the biggest hat in the world, or what …?

What? What’s that you say? Jacquemus?

OMG. That thing is practically a TENT. Look how big it is! A whole family could shelter under there. No more beach umbrellas! You could take off like Mary Poppins with that thing on your head!

I WANT ONE.

Photos: March 2018

Tuesday
Sep182018

Let it Rain!

In a Melbourne spring, one must be prepared for rain at all times. Melburnians are famous for vigilantly checking the weather forecast no matter what the season, and many of us keep a tiny folding umbrella in our totes, or in our drawers at work against sudden need. I am no exception to this rule, and I own a formidable array of vintage umbrellas in different colours so that I can match my outfits.

This vintage 60s frilled umbrella is one of my favourites. I have owned it for a long time. I love vintage brollies for they are generally sturdier than their modern counterparts because their skeletons have more ribs, made from steel unlike the flimsy aluminium contraptions manufactured today. They are therefore much stronger in a high wind. However, mishaps can still occur, and last year they did.

I felt a bit dreadful about this, like a vintage murderer …

First of all, I lost the tip of one spoke, which meant that the covering pulled away. There are no umbrella repairers these days, so I came up with my own solution: find another vintage umbrella in an op shop and cannibalise it for parts! I felt a bit dreadful about this, like a vintage murderer, but I managed to find one – in a vivacious shade of lime green – that was already broken: it was unable to be opened. This made me feel better about hacking off its limbs. (It annoyed me that the op shop was still charging $5 for it, the same price as a functional umbrella, but I supposed it possessed, after all, what I required.)

Naturally, while I was doing this photoshoot and after amputating the silver tips, the umbrella suddenly operated normally! Typical. However, it must have been aggravating for the original owner if the umbrella was randomly becoming stuck – most inconvenient at the sudden onset of a shower. But I had what I needed and repaired the blue brolly, squirreling the remaining tips away.

… some time later another freak accident tragically occurred.

After all these misadventures, some time later another freak accident tragically occurred. One day, when I was walking along the street with the blue umbrella dangling from my wrist by its tassel, an aforementioned high wind suddenly gusted along and bizarrely caught the umbrella against my own limbs and snapped off the handle! Who would even expect such a thing to happen? I was quite indignant.

Fortunately I work at a theatre that has a Props department, and I paid a visit to its manager. He is an amiable man, and was happy to be of assistance. A few days later, my umbrella appeared on my desk, and when I saw him, he told me he had reinforced the shaft with a length of steel, and then had glued the plastic handle back on. What a miracle worker! He warned me to treat it gently henceforth, but it certainly seems very sturdy again – not that I plan a bout of play sword-fighting or anything anytime soon.

Hurrah! LET IT RAIN.

Photos: March 2017, September 2018