A life of discovery


Ode to Buffy the Vampire Slayer


(Spoiler Alert)

Oh, Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I have loved you for thirty years, Sarah Michelle Gellar (and yes, you have improved with age).

Back in 1999 when I was living in Tokyo, an American friend of mine had some VHS tapes (for those of you who remember them). On them were several episodes of a TV show called Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It had come out around the same time as a new book called Harry Potter and the Philosophers' Stone.

Oh, my mind was blown. Yes, I liked Harry, but it was …

Read more…

Malibu Barbie and Me.

malibu PJ

It never occurred to me that Malibu Barbie (and her cousin PJ, I had both) may have inspired me as a child.

She had my ideal life. 

Well, kind of. The upkeep must have been an effort, all that sun-kissed skin and keeping Surfer Kens at bay. But, oh, she was special. 

One Christmas, I was given a tanned doll with impossibly long legs, inflated chest, long blonde hair and a ridiculous waist.

I adored her on sight. It's summer at that time of year in New Zealand, so it wasn't as strange a choic…

Read more…

53 Years of Getting Dressed - Happy Birthday to Me!


I'm 53 today.

Wahoo! Half way through. Given that my great-grandmother made it to over 100, why not? 

53 years of clothes....

Primary school (Elementary to all you Americans). I don't remember much about my own clothing, but I do remember my dolls. Paper and Barbie were huge in my life.  Even then I understood the advantage of friends with superior skills. I got Katrina, a girl in my class who was the best at drawing, to make a paper doll to my specifications (I don't remember the creative br…

Read more…

Why I have Thrift Stores in my Entertainment $$$ Category.


I don’t like the word budget. It sounds...restrictive. Which in my experience can lead to binge shopping or deprivation. Neither are good things.

I much prefer spending plan. I choose all the categories, which includes singing lessons, vacations, petrol (sorry, gas) etc.

I was told that every dollar should have a purpose and to allocate every dollar in alignment with my values, my dreams, and my goals. I like that a lot. 

Regarding my spending on entertainment, what I don’t like going out to …

Read more…

The Sunken Cost Fallacy and Your Wardrobe


I often bring up the sunken cost fallacy (gently) with clients. It’s when when you continue with something which is clearly a disaster, or a mistake or unhelpful just because you've invested time, money, or energy into it. 

One of my downfalls is  buffets (remember them?) I’d overeat simply to get my “money’s worth.” I’d feel lousy after, but it didn’t stop me doing it for years. Meanwhile, my more sensible and sane sister (how’s that for alliteration, Jo?) would eat normally then stop. Or bare…

Read more…

Can you get dressed in 10 minutes?

Erin-Keam-22 (1)

If there were Olympics in assembling outfits, I'd be in the running.

I can get dressed in 10 minutes in an outfit that I feel I look great in.

I sound like I'm boasting, right? Well, yes, but I'm also proud of myself AND it's possible because I have practiced.

Style is like any skill. We need to find someone who can teach us, learn, practice and then Voila!

(Hopefully I spelt that right, remind me to ask my Parisian neighbor. Do you know even she asks what I think of her clothing? Now that's…

Read more…

If you can't wear the clothes you love to work, get a new career.


If you can't wear what you love to work, you're in the wrong career.

About fifteen years ago, I was helping a beautiful young woman (one of my semi-nieces) apply for an apartment. She was very young and people often make snap judgments about age, so we decided she needed to look trustworthy, respectable, tidy, a suitable applicant. Seems reasonable, right?

We went to a thrift store and found her an ensemble which made her look like an extremely trustworthy young woman. i.e. business casual. Sh…

Read more…

What if my dog ate all of your clothes?


This does relate to clothing, so bear with me. There’s a blue pottery French bulldog on my kitchen bench (thank you Tarjay). It’s one of those jars you’re supposed to keep cookies in. I don’t eat cookies or biscuits (as they are called in New Zealand). So I keep it full of dog treats instead. My French bulldog knows that after dinner, she gets her Greenie. She will sit there, look at the treat jar, look at me, look at the treat jar, look at me. She knows that I know what to do. Sure enough, I re…

Read more…

It's OK to buy new clothes & still care about the planet


One of the exercises I do with my clients is to establish their values.

Many of my clients care about the environment, diversity, fair trade and the ethical creation of clothing.

For some, this means wearing previously worn clothing, which can include up-cycled, recycled, or second-hand, either from thrift stores, consignment stores, clothes swapping or as gifts from other friends’ wardrobes.

This is absolutely wonderful!

I help them choose, curate, source and create combinations.


Read more…

Why self doubt got between me and my love of leopard skin.


Why self-doubt got between me and my love of leopard skin.

I have always loved leopard skin. I can’t exactly tell you why (though I could definitely tell you why you like certain things), but I’ve always been drawn to it.

The first time I bought anything made of leopard skin, I think I was about 13 and it was a one piece leopard skin bathing suit. I remember arguing with my mother about it because leopard skin is a polarizing subject.

I loved that bathing suit. In hindsight, it wasn’t the mos…

Read more…