Posted by on Jul 21, 2016 in Balanced Life

While writing my posts this week on what to wear in the air when winging your way to holiday cruise of a lifetime on Deborah Hutton’s Food, Wine and Relaxation river cruise in France, it conjured up images of the glamourous days of air travel in the 1950s and 60’s.  Passengers dressed to the nines in pearls and suits, food was served in crystal and china, powder rooms were stocked with the latest beauty products, stewardesses were likened to movie stars and lobster was cuisine du jour.  Air travel became a glamorous pursuit of the well-to-do and the travel itself was considered the holiday.  Luxury and opulence was the name of the game and with free alcohol flowing, passengers travelled the world floating on clouds of champagne.

It makes the economy class of today downright primitive, however it seems there were a few downsides to travel in the golden age :

  • Due to the piston-style engines and inferior seat belt designs, turbulence was much worse and in some cases was so severe it could snap your neck
  • It was way more dangerous to fly and mid-air collisions were common as were incidences of engines dropping out of planes mid-flight
  • Sudden loss of height often resulted in cabin furniture being shaken out of position and landing on passengers
  • It was four to five times more expensive to fly than today and was only the pastime of the wealthy and white elite
  • With no technology such as iPads, movie streaming, etc, passengers were given postcards to write when boarding as in-flight entertainment
  • Smoking cigarettes, cigars and pipes were encouraged therefore cabins were constantly filled with toxic smoke
  • Air stewardesses had height, weight and ‘moral’ restrictions
  • The free booze equalled many more loud and drunken passengers

Maybe Qantas economy isn’t so bad after all?  No wait, give me business or first class any day!

Posted by on Jun 16, 2016 in Balanced Life, Lifestyle

When a celebrity stylist gets married you know it’s going to be a ‘Vogue’ moment – especially when your wedding guests, and clients, are the likes of Kate Hudson, Katie Perry, Riley Keogh and Jessica Alba. Stylist Jamie Schneider married hedge fund manager Nico Mazrahi in a intimate ceremony on a ranch in Aspen in front of 200 guests (and many A-list celebrities). The bride wore three dresses including Hedi Slimane for Yves Saint Laurent for the ceremony which Schneider described as ‘a feminine version of a Yves Saint Laurent tuxedo jacket’. For the wedding celebrations Schneider changed into sequinned Marc Jacobs and later Julie de Libran for Sonia Rykiel.  (BTW – that’s Nicole Richie and hubbie Joel Madden, Katie Perry, Jessica Alba in the photo bottom right).
Wonder if Schneider needs a stylist to help out with all those celebrities?
[Image credit and to see more, go to https://www.vogue.com/13446112/jamie-schneider-nico-mizrahi-wedding-aspen/?mbid=nl_061416_Daily&CNDID=25763017]

Posted by on Jun 2, 2016 in Balanced Life, Inside Style, Lifestyle

As I’m totally on the Net-a-Porter theme this week, let me introduce you to my dream office – perhaps not on as large as scale as this.

Glossy, glamourous, black and white, sleek and slick.  That’s Net-a-Porter’s 44,000 square feet, 2-level London headquarters above a Westfield mall.  Here’s just a few fashionable facts about the office that some have described as having a “James Bond feel”:

  • white lacquered furniture
  • 10 metre high ceiling-to-floor windows to let the light in
  • Corridors of glass
  • TV monitors that have a Google map illustrating where in the world we are receiving orders from, in real time
  • bespoke white and crystal chandeliers
  • round, square, rectangle white leather buttoned lounges, pods and chairs – everywhere
  • racks of designer clothes
  • extremely fashionable and well dressed people – again everywhere

Just a teeny insight into the glamourous headquarters of the world’s premier online luxury retailer.  I can’t think of anywhere else I would rather work – other than Karl Lagerfeld’s private atelier.

Posted by on Apr 21, 2016 in Balanced Life, Lifestyle

“Don’t be ridiculous, a real woman is never too old”

Just one of the fabulous lines from the 1990 film ‘Mermaids’ starring Cher, Winona Ryder and Bob Hoskins.  I never tire of watching Cher’s fabulous performance as Rachel Flax an unconventional single mother of two equally unconventional daughters who move to a small Massachusetts town in 1963.  Great lines, fabulous wardrobe and a sassy Mrs Flax who knows that “every woman wants a new pair of shoes”, this is a great story about motherhood, love and family.  A great Mother’s Day gift idea.

Posted by on Mar 24, 2016 in Balanced Life, Fashion

If you love costume in film as much as I do then the classic film Easter Parade would be in your list of favourites.  Women’s costumes in the 1948 film starring Fred Astaire, Judy Garland and Ann Miller were designed by legendary costumer Irene Lentz-Gibbons, known as ‘Irene’.  Irene created wardrobes for movies such as Gaslight, Meet Me In St Louis, Lover Come Back and The Postman Always Rings Twice with Lana Turner.  Easter Parade’s costumes were both colourful and elegant and who can forget Ann Miller’s black and yellow dance costume for the number ‘Shakin’ The Blues Away’.  Unfortunately Irene’s life came to a sad end when in November 1962 just three weeks short of her sixty-second birthday, she jumped to her death from her bathroom window of the Knickerbocker Hotel.  Perhaps you may find time over the Easter weekend to watch this wonderful classic.

Posted by on Mar 16, 2016 in Balanced Life, Lifestyle

I’m still dreaming of Deborah Hutton’s holiday cruise of a lifetime through Burgundy and Provence and it’s prompted me to watch (yet again) a favourite film of mine, A Good Year, starring Russell Crowe and Marion Cotillard.  In the film, Crowe plays successful London banker Max Skinner who unexpectedly inherits his Uncle’s French estate complete with chateau and vineyard.  Based in London with no intentions of weekend getaways, Max wants to immediately sell the chateau and pocket the loot, however, when he gets to the Chateau his past and present intertwine into a lighthearted story of returning to your childhood to reinvent your future.  You will fall in love with the scenery, sets and characters in the film set in the fictional Château La Siroque, which in reality is Château La Conorgue located just near the village of Bonnieux in the Luberon region of Provence.  If you’re into France, chateaux, wine, food or Russell Crowe you will love this movie and dream of your own French getaway.

A Word of Advice:  Have a glass of red wine and a cheese platter on hand BEFORE you sit down to watch this movie as the urge to drink and eat French fare occurs very early into the film.

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