Where have you been? Where are you going to?

I’ll give you a subtle hint….

look here.

That’s me in some of the photos – with no shoes on.


Yoga Teacher Training - 29 May 2011 - Tiaki Pilates & Yoga, Broadway

Am I going to have to change the name of my blog I wonder?

Half a Navasana – Frocking Friday the 19th, Shoeper Shoe Challenge #26 of 105

Amanda Starr Purple Snakeskin Boots

These boots were last worn here.

So this weekend I am teaching yoga theory for the first time. That’s scary. Have you ever heard a Scottish person pronounce:

योगस्थ: कुरु कर्माणि सङ्गं त्यक्त्वा धनंजय ।
सिद्ध्यसिद्ध्यो: समो भूत्वा समत्वं योग उच्यते ।।

No, nor have I.


However, tonight I am ready for the challenge not least because I had a couple of glasses of wine with my fellow Tiaki instructors tonight.

Followed by a glass of bubbles with my good friend Carol Duncan who is down to speak at TedxSydney

Then home for some freshly made hot chips and sausages at home, after which I was ready for a bit of impromptu Navasana.  Or half a Navasana.

Dress by Wish http://www.wish.com.au| Opaque Tights from the supermarket| Purple boots from Amanda Starr| Slightly pissed grin (see aforesaid)| Persistent air conditioning unit has to go

Would half a boat pose be a dinghy pose?

If you loathe leopard print…. look away

Frocking Friday the 18th, Shoeper Shoe Challenge #25 of 105

Regular readers will not be surprised to see me wearing yet another animal print item this week.

First there were the controversial leopard print heels:

Leopard Print Peep Toe Stilettos

Then there was the Bang strappy leopard print dress

Followed by the leopard print silk Amanda Starr shoes:

Amanda Starr Silk Leopard Print Heels with Black Leather Rose

And now the elder and slightly more sedate and sensible corporate* leopard print dress. I bought it on the same day as I bought the strappy leopard dress above. When I brought them back to the office everyone rolled their eyes.  I tried to explain that the dresses were $10 each but by that time the vigorous head shaking had commenced.

Leopard Print Dress: Bang by Messina || Faux Pony/Snake Skin Stilettos by Michael Antonio shoes http://www.michaelantonio.com/

I am becoming a bit of a caricature of myself particularly as the shoes are reaching ridiculously pointy points. These were the shoes that I tried on with the Bowie Wong suit that didn’t make it to Melbourne last week.


Michael Antonio Faux Pony & Snakeskin Stilettos|| Fully Fashioned Seamed Stockings by eBay Seller ‘leglines’

Are there any other serial leopard print offenders out there? Let me know who you are. If we stick together we can hide each other from the fashion police.

*My views on corporate apparel are entirely my own and shared by very few other people on the planet. 

Melbourne Shoe Decision – The Chosen

It was a hard decision and yet it was an easy one.

I was looking for shoes to match this dress:

E.C.I New York Black Cream Silk Shift Dress (photo copyright eBay seller 'kittylip')

When in doubt and giving a legal presentation – go the conservative route with plain black patent leather stilettos. Women in the military are allowed to wear patent leather shoes although the maximum height allowed is 2.5 inches.

I knew that some of the audience would be struggling with my accent.  Wearing a pair of bright red or even black and white shoes might have been a mistake. Red is seen to be a challenging colour. Orange might have been interesting but as yet I only have one pair of orange shoes and those are really hard for me to wear.

These shoes are a design called Canal created by shoe designer Olivia Morris for Faith Shoes in 2008.

Olivia Morris for Faith - 'Canal' Patent Leather Stilettos

Faith Shoes are quite hard to come by these days although you can pick them up fairly easily on eBay UK and via Debenhams Online.  I missed out on a pair of identical red leather Canal stilettos on eBay a week after I got the black ones. Last week I lost out on an auction for a pink hessian and red patent leather pair of peep toes and have been pining for them ever since.

Pink & Red Peep Toes Olivia Morris for Faith

Olivia Morris is on maternity leave for the foreseeable future.  If you see any of her shoes for Faith on eBay, snap em up, they are well made and worth the money.

If you see a pair of these:

Olivia Morris 'Ginny' Rafia & Patent Leather Buckle Shoes Spring/Summer 2009 Collection via Shoeperwoman's Blog http://www.shoeperwoman.com/2009/11/olivia-morris-patent-buckle-sandals.html

or these

Olivia Morris 'Clover' Image Copyright Olivia Morris 2007

or these

Olivia Morris 'Daria' Two Tone Shoes, Autumn/Winter 2007 Collection (Image Copyright Olivia Morris 2007)

from her main ‘Olivia Morris’ line in my size and buy them, just don’t gloat – okay?

Have you had a Big Do shoe decision to make recently? What did you wear, which shoes did you choose and what influenced your decision?

Melbourne Shoe Decisions

My boss and I travelled to Melbourne earlier this week to present a seminar paper on social media law. I had two outfits to choose from:  a simple black and white silk shift E C I New York dress and a light tan Bowie Wong suit.  The problem was, of course, which of my 105 pairs of shoes/boots was I going to wear with each of the outfits. Even more importantly, what was the impression that the aforesaid shoes would make.

The Bowie Wong suit, according to my husband, has green tones in it. I have no shoes with corresponding green tones.  After trying on a few other shades of shoes and gazing longingly at these Alexander McQueen platforms on eBay –

Alexander McQueen Nude Pumps via eBay Seller miurasv69

– I had to accept that my failure to invest in a pair of nude platform shoes to date is a major impediment to me wearing a really quite nicely cut and elegant suit.

More than a bit disgruntled, the next decision to wear the black and white shift dress seemed like a reasonably sensible one for the purposes of making a shoe decision.  Or so you would think.

After not hearing a sound from me for about an hour my husband walked into our bedroom to find me on the bed contemplating a coven of shoes.

The Shoe Coven

It took me another hour and a half to try on each and every pair of shoes with the dress to decide which to wear.

Can you guess which shoes I chose and why?

On Bubble Filling and Scottishness (generally speaking) – Frocking Friday the Seventeenth, Shoe Challenge #24 of 105

Yes I am.

I really, really am Scottish.  Sometimes I wear kilts, sometime I even talk pure dead Scottish.

When prompted to, I will also talk about shoes too.

About two weeks ago I was having A Horrible Day.  The kind of day that feels like wading through sewage to find your bus fare home.  About quarter to three on Sewage Day, I see a tweet from my journalista friend, fellow stocking enthusiast and soon to be high heel convert Carol Duncan.  ABC Newcastle wanted someone legal to talk about this case:

High Heels Tripper Compensation Case

This is what I said.

One of my friend pointed out that the presenter, the lovely Paul Bevan was having significant problems understanding me for most of the interview. Notwithstanding, I had a lot of fun. It was almost as much as being laced into a Puimond corset at Christmas time while drinking champagne with Baby Likes to Pony owner Meg Whaite.  Bubbles and lack of oxygen caused by tight lacing have a euphoria inducing effect on one.

Other things that cheer me up enormously (other than shoe shopping, confusing people with my accent and being laced into corsets) are:

1.    The first coffee of the day.

I only ever have one coffee so it has to be strong and vibrant.  I really like the cup of coffee that I get from Crown Chickens in Hurstville, in Ormonde next to the station between 8 and about 10 am when the owner makes it herself.  I have no idea what she does to it and it might not be to everyone’s taste, but her coffee makes me really happy.

2.   Red Shiny Shoes

There is no shoe ever designed that is not improved in appearance by being crafted in red patent leather.

3.    Silk Dresses

I really can’t get enough of these.  It is much easier to get away with wearing silk dresses than linen or wool dresses, creases don’t look quite so bad on a peachy soft surface.

4.   Daily Exercise

If I do not exercise, I get cranky. If I exercise and I get that fatigued ‘can’t get off the couch without assistance‘ feeling I am happy.

On Frocking Friday the Seventeenth I met up with the lady who makes sure that every time I exercise, I feel happy.  She also makes me do silly things in photos and introduced me to the concept of filling my bubble, doing something every day that makes me happy. This in turn makes her happy.

Me & @tiakipilates

4.     Getting a kiss from my kids without having to ask for one

Speaks for itself really. The words “I love you mum” are mostly followed by “can I have?

Shoes are really so much easier than people.


Silk Dress:     Lulu & Red Boutique

Shoes:           Red Patent Leather Mary Janes – Bronx by Djikmans via Schuh

Stockings:    Pretty Polly opaques

What can cheer you up even when you are at your lowest? Who/what fills your bubble?

Stockings, shoes or pyjamas: Shoeper Shoe Challenge #24 of 106 Shoe

Atmosphere at PRIMARK black sequin platform pumps

Until about 10.00 am this morning there was a salted peanut in our crockery cupboard.

This salted peanut had been there for at least 4 months. I noticed it and decided that I would see how long it would take someone, other than me, to notice it and chuck it out. By someone I mean my husband as he is the only one at eye height to see the offending peanut.

Today was Mother’s Day in Australia.  I miss my mother on Mother’s Day for a lot of reasons including but not limited to the fact that  she, like me, would have noticed that peanut 4 months ago and either eaten it or chucked it out.

My husband until reading this blog post was probably completely unaware that the peanut existed.

The most important thing about raising children, I have discovered, is training other human beings to notice stuff that bugs you and do something about it.

Not that they get it right away as I have noticed with the Minx. Being a shoe obsessive, I am over the moon that my daughter is as excited about my eBay boot purchases as I am even if she wears them before I do.  What does not thrill me is that she plays houses with her teddies in my shoe boxes despite me explaining how much I like pristine shoe boxes. I am odd that way.

The Minx wears 80s Wild Pair Stacked Heel boots

Household mess is the same. Looking at the photo above gives me gut pains. I can see shoes on the floor, clothes on the table and papers everywhere. Most of the time I can ignore it but now and again and usually when I am premenstrual I find myself screaming:

This house is a mess, a disaster area, a tip, a MIDDEN”

to which my husband replies

There is nothing wrong with this house“.

The longer I am married the more I realise that men and women see things differently. Household clutter is just the tip of the iceberg of different-ness.

Mother’s Day gifts are another.  I would be very happy with Mothers Day gifts that incorporate:

1.     shoes

2.    stockings

3.    nice knickers.

My husband thinks that:

(a)   I have too many shoes as it is; and

(b)  it would be inappropriate for my children to buy me stockings or lingerie.

I got pyjamas. Very nice pyjamas indeed but that is not what I asked for.

Bearing in mind that my children are stuck living with me for another 10 to 15 years yet, I have time to indoctrinate them on Mothers Day gifts and how I like the house to be kept.

Wish me luck.

Are you a mother? What would your perfect gift be? Are you a child? What odd things does your mother insist on round the house that you have taken on board for yourself?

Three Seasons in Three Weeks

For those of you who have never visited Sydney in  Australia – the transeasonal weather is weird. You can go from hot desert winds to Antarctic chill extremely quickly.  Despite the fact that it is terribly British to fetishise the weather I cannot help myself. I found out this week that there is an iPhone App that will choose your outfit for the day based on your wardrobe contents and the likely outside ambient temperature.

Of course that is nowhere near as much fun as being ambushed by three different seasons in three weeks.

SEASON 1 – SUMMER – Frocking Friday the Sixteenth – Shoeper Shoe Challenge #21 of 105 – 22 April 2011 

On Good Friday 22 April 2011 in the afternoon we decided at some point to try to find a place to buy food from that was open and from there to go to the beach.

Being Friday, I was frocked up. Shorts have never been for me.

Dress: Body & Soul Clothing, Bali via eBay| Bikini, Bond Eye Australia| Sandals from Ravel

The children were very keen to have ice cream for lunch. I was in need of a coffee. As it turned out there were only two shops open – one BBQ chicken place and a fish & chip shop. We all ended up eating what my dad calls as Scottish soul food.

Chips from Ramsgate Beach Seafood

“Chips are very healthy” he told my children at Christmas time “potatoes are extremely good for you”. Gee thanks Dad, I think every time my children go past a chippy and starting nudzhing me for ‘health food’.

SEASON 2 – AUTUMN: Frocking Friday the Seventeenth – Shoeper Shoe Challenge #22 of 105 – Friday 29 April 2011

Patent Leather Prada Peep Toes with Autumn Leaves| vintage fully fashioned seamed stockings from eBay Seller 'leglines'

I wore these patent Prada pumps in Autumnal colours to meet two lawyer Twitter friends last Friday.

Me, Lawrence Atkinson and Neil Watt

One is Scottish but talks like an Australian and has as big an obsession with vintage coats and fedoras as I have with shoes and stockings. The other is Australian but talks like a Shakespearean actor.

Neil Watt (far right) was born in Scotland, moved to Brisbane as a bairn and is a self-confessed proponent of truth and light and all that is good in the legal profession – an ethicist. As you might imagine he’s about as welcome as a fart in a spacesuit. This is odd because for me ethics are equivalent to professional etiquette and manners. In a world where we rant first and repent at leisure however folk like Neil are a dying breed.

I’ve been on at Neil for ages to blog about his hats, his shirts and his ties.  He catalogues them but he won’t share his stories.  This is a shame because he shared a huge secret about Andrew Barton aka Banjo Paterson  – the man in the homburg hat with the customised rim on the Australian ten dollar bill.

Please join with me in cordially requesting that Neil share more of his hat hints with us.

Lawrence Atkinson is truly multi-talented. He recruits specialist lawyers for special projects, writes and has his own community radio station show Stress Free Saturday Afternoon in Sydney on Saturday afternoons. If you are a musician or street performer and would like some time to showcase your talent, follow him on Twitter and @reply him for a follow.

Silk Dress by Trini Turk via eBay| Autumn Colour Shoes by Prada| Seamed stockings by Leglines

Prada Autumn Leaves Peep Toe Pumps

SEASON 3 – WINTER: Shoeper Shoe Challenge #23 of 105 – Tuesday 3 May 2011 – Winter

It’s snowing” said the Minx this morning grabbing a brolly from the front porch. Not that she or my son would know what real snow looks like or feels like. It wasn’t snowing nor was it raining and yet there was a bite in the air, a little chomp of chill air around my cheekbones that suggested that somewhere in or very near Australia the snow has fallen.

It was cold enough to wear a scarf as well as my winter coat. I forgot the scarf but remembered to wear penguin shoes.

As we were on the way to school, my son insisted that I talk to the stone cat.

I must have done this to him countless times as a toddler. Talking to immobile stone cats is surprisingly soothing.

It was really quite chilly for a Sydney day and yet the last of the summer cockroaches ambled out of the garage and up the hallway in an insouciant manner last night. Only in the depths of winter will I suddenly realise that I’ve stopped anticipating his friends and relations scuttling across my feet when I take the washing in at night.

Did I mention that I love cold weather?

Black and White Platforms - Zoe Wittner via eBay.