Saturday, January 8, 2011

Ark Building and a bit of Decluttering.

I told you I live in Old Testament Conditions. Cast your little eyes over Exhibit A-the sky outside my bedroom tonight. It was down right Biblical. Or at least a bit Apocalyptic. And don't think this photo has been digitally remastered or photo shopped either (because frankly I don't know how to action same)
My beautiful friend Kate B took me to lunch the other day and influenced by my vocal loathing of the Horror of Maternity Clothes gave me this excellent Diane Von Furstenberg top. I love the rope trim. Thank you Kate B!
I had brunch with my girlfriends and because we always have so much to discuss and arrange I actually took notes and made lists
This is my friend M. I loved her top and bracelet. It looks like a copy of something Famous.
I went to a Proper Fancy Pants Maternity Shoppe today to try to source something decent to wear.
People. I don't want to frighten anyone, but it was very Disheartening. This was a very high End Shoppe and the overwhelming fabric choice was what can only be described as cheap, low end, fast-to-pill T Shirt Fabric. I know. So annoying. So unflattering too. And 'Spensive as All get Out to boot. I didn't really wear this fabric before I got pregnant and I don't suddenly want to start now.
No Australian should have to live this way in 2011.
My friend Irish L gave me the skirt. Looks a treat with Kate's DVF top and my Prada shoes.
Because it rains 24/7 and flash flooding is occurring all over the traps I've been building an ark and thinking about what to stock it with ( apart from 2 of each species of course). This picnic basket from Olive Home could be the ticket.
This necklace and dress could work well too. This frog green frock reminds me of my Frog Green Tibi number seen here
So after the High End Maternity shoppe experience I went to Target to check out the Celebrity Endorsed Catriona Rowntree Maternity Range. I had High Hopes. I was Disappointed. It wasn't that flash and was frankly, it was fairly 'Spensive and worst yet People: T-shirt fabric had been used with what could only be described as Gay Abandon.
So then I went to the Norman Hotel for a (Vegetarians Look Away Right Now) Soothing Steak. It was Delicious.
Meanwhile, because I'm feeling exhausted and have low energy I can't really action much, but I want you to know that I still would never ever knowingly undercushion. I have Standards.
I got this candle for Christmas and I love it. Because of the damp dankness everywhere I have to burn heavily scented candles round the clock.
Apparently it's going to be monsoonal for at least 3 more months. Depressing.
are the rest of you decorating with shells? I like a few in the bathroom.
I've been doing some light decluttering. I colour coordinated these books (and thank you to my friend Amber who gave me the idea) after giving about 20 to my friend who was on her way to the Salvation Army depot.

and I've gone through my junk jewellery and decluttered that too. This enamel bracelet is one of my treasures. It's my Mum's from the 1970s. I love it.
Someone asked how I store my jewellery. Well mainly in little dishes and mirrored boxes. I don't own that many earrings and wear the same ones all the time (baroque pearls in a kind of pear shape arrangement)
I love this limoges ashtray. I bought it from a charity shoppe with The Zsa Zsa (Hungarian to the Stars) in about 2005.

As well as junk jewellery and books, I got rid of old cosmetics, lotions, fragrance and polish too. Unused stuff went to the Salvos, used stuff got chucked. I read a fantastic quote on the Rich life on a Budget blog (see my blog list) that said "The less stuff I have the richer I feel. Too much stuff weighs me down". Damn straight. Plus the more stuff you have, the more stuff you have to clean and keep tidy. And I do not want to be surrounded by the evidence of my past mistakes and bad decision making. It felt fantastic to hand over a bag of things to my friend to take away and give to a charity. It also makes you more determined to buy less and only keep things that add value to your life and home.
My reorganised decluttered polishes warm my heart.
When I have more energy I'll sort out the pantry, the linen cupboard, the 2nd kitchen drawer and the laundry cupboard.
I added a google search whatsy as per a reader's request. It's to the right.
I see Princess Mary's had her twins, a boy and a girl. And Miranda Kerr's had a boy and so has Elton John. Babies are the New Black. Say what you will about me, I'm a Joiner.
I've been wondering, what makes a blog popular do you think? Some of my favourite blogs have hardly any followers despite being absolutely fantastic and fascinating.


  1. Your HUMOUR - stands you apart from most & the way you write is UNIQUE - oh & of course the GLAMOUR. You will note that I have used upper case for ease of browsing, say what you will about me, I am a thinker.....


  2. Well the DVF top does a stunning impersonation of maternity wear.

    I felt your pain when I read this post. I know that hideous rock and a hard place you are caught in when you need something to accommodate your bump but also don't want to relegate yourself to strictly under-cover-of-darkness public appearances. Spending a dime on those terrible fashions is physically painful and who has the time to whip up a suitable number (or source decent fabrics and learn how to sew like a demon for that matter)?

    Best of luck with your mission FF!

  3. Low energy?? Well, I'd hate to see how much you accomplish when fully-revved up! That amount of decluttering, excellent photographing and blogging is inspiring. Its definitely nesting y'know - I did horribly unglam things like lots of cleaning behind the loo, buying biscuits for the anticipated hoardes of baby-admiring relatives, and going on a bus to buy more cot blankets when I was a day before my due date, and nearly giving birth in the shopping centre. Hormones can do these mad things to us!
    So sorry that the rain situation is looking like staying - admiring your good, indominatable spirit having your lovely candles on the go. And as for your emergency kit - well of course it would have to be the lovely picnic basket!
    And everyone is going to be telling you to do a FF maternity range now that you've outed the gap in the market style'n'quality wise...

  4. Have you thought about ordering something from Isabella Oliver over here? They have a sale on at the moment and are highly regarded (though I can't recommend myself, Kate from Make Do has tried their non-maternity stuff and luffed it).

    I am going to do a de-clutter soon, it does make you feel lighter. There is no point holding onto things you don't need or like. I love the little boxes and bowls on your dressing table, I have a similar system but yours are much nicer.

    The popularity of some blogs bewilders me, as does the fact that some of the best seem undiscovered. xx

  5. Hi FF! Good you have some candles at home! They are the perfect antidote. My mum decorates her bath with shells around the tub, too. Some shells are inside a vase that looks like a cognac-glass, scale 400%.
    I would love a post where you recommend those blogs which have hardly any followers. Last week I grazed a few blog's comments to find new blogs. I am only on the hunt for new blogs!
    To me it is the personality which makes a blog attractive. For example cotton socks, she posts really seldom but is so refreshing and cute! Or Beate from sunday in bed - she is 100% cozy. Her postings are always a treat. And of course your blog: each of your postings reads like a New Years resolution to me: what I could do! (cook, declutter, polish my nails ...)

    About the earrings: I would be scared to scratch them, that's why I put them in velvet boxes, each pair in a single box. Plus: I am so afraid of burglars, I restrain myself from showing my jewelry, though most of it is costume jewelry, it might attract burglars ...

    Have a nice weekend! I don't know if you already posted it: are you already on maternity leave? If not, when and how long are you planning to pause working at the coalface?

  6. I can only say that I am delighted that I found your blog. You are funny, smart and give great tips. Your love for your family and friends shines through,
    You bring joy to your readers, but you have also shared your sad moments too.
    I just love reading your blog.

  7. Wow, you certainly are nesting! Well done, & congratulations!

    Mrs BC

  8. I Luff that quote: The less stuff I have the richer I feel. Too much stuff weighs me down. That's been my mindset as well, and the decluttering project continues.

    I also Luff how you seemed to have arranged your bookshelf by color. You pay such wonderful attention to details.

    I'm sorry to hear that maternity wear does not seem to have improved since I was pregnant 14 years ago. You'd think that with babies being the new black and all that retailers would Get A Clue. There's nothing worse than crappy fabric.

    Good luck with the Old Testament conditions. Just a warning for your Ark: tigers are stinkier up close than you'd imagine. Bring lots of scented candles.

  9. Oh my, your nesting instincts are kicking in early FF! Watch out!

  10. That sky looks as if it's out of a Cecil B DeMille biblical epic.
    I love the red DVF top and the crimson shoes, very chic, but I am in lust with that frog green dress, I have got to find myself a green dress pronto.

  11. The blog conference I went to said about popularity a) post every day b) choose your niche c) write about something you care about d) provide value. You make us laugh, you show us pretty photos, you are audacious, we want to be you, you write every day so we can live the dream:). Do come to California. We have a) sun b) better maternity clothes.

  12. Very nice pictures and I like your beautiful watch...

  13. Yea! I find that New Year is the best time to Declutter. Am going through so much 'stuff'; books, clothes, ex-essential household accessories,and so on and packing in bin bags to take to local charity(op) shops.
    Re maternity wear, I had to laugh (while sympathising) at your choice of an admittedly very stylish loose top over a (? maternity) skirt and sensible flat shoes. So vintage 1950s. I also love seeing you use your extensive wardrobe of Malene or By Birger style tunic dresses. Though I understand there might be issues around narrow sleeve apertures as one adds a few pounds in weight. In the UK the prime minister's wife Sam Cam was very elegant with mostly high street styles during her recent pregnancy. My Australian corporate daughter who pupped a few days ago, seemed to wear one stripey top the whole time according to photos. And I wore out a pair of haute couture and amazingly comfortable Charles Jourdan sandals during my last pregnancy thirty two years ago. Wishing you well and sunny weather!

  14. the very happy and relieved "Mr Mary" ;-)

  15. Dear FF, love the Kate B gifted top, lovely! Also love seeing your jewellery storage systems - like the look of those emerald earrings. And that Limoges plate is sooo pretty. It reminds me I have a Limoges little pill box thingie at my Mum's house - time to reclaim I think!! i am also in decluttering frame of mind - got rid of a lot of unused pharmaceuticals yesterday - hayfever pills from the early 1990s anyone? xx

  16. For maternity wear, have you looked at Isabelle Oliver? They are from the UK have maternity and women's wear. I have a few of their dresses. They are cotton jersey, but very good quality. Not sure if they ship to Australia, bur worth a look.

  17. Dear FF,

    Great question! I wait with baited breath and check in each day to read what you've been up to next (MaiTai put me on to you)and I can't put my finger on what it is exactly that makes me do it. I think you're my bit of escapism into glamour, pink, fashion, girl power, SATC etc in my otherwise male dominated world - both at my coalface and home! I've started working my way through your blogs from the beginning and am catching up, whilst keeping current! I may have zapped some of your energy as I am living "according to FF" in 2011 - I read your blog about "get up earlier and go to bed later - don't tell me you have insufficient time" it's still ringing in my ears - I have lived this way all week and it's amazing what you can achieve! You have a great style of writing which is enjoyable to read. Looking forward to your next post - Sending you some energy!


  18. Great Post dear FF!Thats exactly what makes a good blog, I think- snippets of someones life. Lets face it, we all are a little bit nosey, and love to peek into other peoples cupboards, wardrobes etc, and blogs let us do that without appearing too voyeristic.
    I personally hate blogs that merely consist of photos drawn from elsewhere on the web, fashion shoots etc; I like a bit of reality.You somehow have that magic mix of fashion, style, interior design, and all important humour- plus its obvious you are a lovely, caring person too!
    Re your Angst over maternity clothes, I think you're trying in the wrong places- forget maternity and buy in your normal boutiques; there are lots of lovely loose, flowy styles around which you could wear. I should know, I own a boutique and this Summer ( I use the term loosely) has been all about the smock top.Whatever, you still look fabulous. but be kind to yourself and don't expect to Action (copyright FF) too much.xx

  19. I've always worn ballet flats on the weekend for Play Wear but I sort of need to these days as my centre of balance is way off and really high heels are challenging....Plus I can move faste in ballet flats.

    Must check out Ole Isabel Oliver from the UK.

  20. Blighty we are in sync- I chucked out medicines that were past their use by dates too! I even found I remote control for my vcr that I gave to charity about 18 months ago....Shameful that I'd kept it.

  21. I am not on maternity leave and will work until about 4 or 5 weeks before my due date.

    Not sure how much time I will have off yet though.

  22. Unfortunately, I think maternity clothes are a reflection of our overall insistence that clothing be cheap...take that and multiply it by "oh, you'll only be wearing this for a little bit and then you'll toss it" point of view.

    Do you know anyone who sews? Or are any of your friends headed for Hong Kong (or India) soon? You could send your measurements along with them...

    The decluttering urge has hit here, too, and I am not pregnant. Something about the new year, putting all the Christmas things away, etc. As you would say, it is So Soothing.

    Love your blog, for all the reasons others have stated.

  23. I'm loving the colour co-ordinated books...I colour co-ordinate my wardrobe (strange, I know) but books? I had never thought to do that...Will be doing some hardcore actioning of book re-arranging today. Thanks for giving me a way to fill in this dreary, rainy Sunday x

  24. This damp is horrendous. I've declared war and bought those moisture absorber thingies one places in cupboards to obliterate mould and they are absorbing water at a rate of knots. We are living in tough times.
    When it comes to reading blogs I find my favourites just click and that connection keeps me returning. If a blog tickles my funny bone then I'm hooked.
    Good luck with sourcing suitable attire FF.

  25. Maternity wear is beyond depressing. I wore my husband's shirts towards the end.

    I love your colour coded books.

  26. Oh FF I just knew you would kill that top. I luff it on you and you look 11/10 in it!
    I bought some stuff (non maternity) from Isabella Oliver and it can be a bit hit and miss I am afraid. I think the floaty sort of stuff they do in the other range might be better for you cos your not really a "Look at my bump" sort of girl.
    Fingers and toes (FF 2009) the weather is looking up but your sunset shots are stunning but strangely spooky.
    I love how you store your jewellery I do it a bit similar with my stuff in Wedgwood Jasper ware plates. I do use a coffee mug hanger to store my necklaces on. Classy it ain't but it does the job.
    I love your blog because it is the essence of you. When I first met you on the Vogue forum your were always piping up on some topic whether is was "What I am wearing today" "What I am cooking for dinner", the Current Affair forums and of course the Housewives of Orange County discussion which we bonded on.
    This blog became a one stop shop for all things FF and not only that we got to actually see your life laid out in pictures. Thrilling!!!!!
    Your post on what makes a blog popular is timely as it is the annual blog awards.
    I have voted already and of course I put you as first choice. I also voted for Sydney Shop Girl cos I love her chatty style and of course Tune into radio Carly for its engaging and informative content.
    If anyone wants to be a joiner (FF2010) here is the web link to vote!

  27. Could you tell us your favourite blogs and then we can start following them?

  28. Dear FF, that sky looks beautiful!

    You look stylish in everything, maternity or not.

    I had a big declutter in December and must finish this month. I feel tons better for it. I have to finish my wardrobe which is a mammoth job.

    I'm glad you added a search as I was going to ask you about that hairdryer you recommended. I hope I can get it here.

    Love the Limoge ashtray full of earrings. Where did you get the emerald ones? They are stunning! xx

  29. favourite blogs are on blog listto the right

    Hairdryer you need is a parlux-my sister got one in UK

    earrings are Jackie Kennedy copies from generous gems a website in USA. Love her copies x

  30. Faux Fuchsia,

    You wonderful, gorgeous, blogger-extraordinaire who I adore! I was wondering why I was getting all this great traffic to my site today. Thank you!

    And thank you also for asking the question that I, too, wonder: What makes a blog attract lots of followers? Because I don't have many, but I adore each and every one of them. I think they're 11/10!

    The arrangement of your books by color is genius. I may have to try that one myself.

    Again, thank have just made my weekend.



  31. Hi FF
    Any maternity wear joy at Cocoon in Paddington or Mama's Homein Newmarket?? I bought from Mama's Home 7 years ago but not sure what their stuff is like now - they do however have amazing nursery stuff and children's wear.
    Your new DVF top looks fantastic - you have got lovely friends.
    I love the windows at Olive Home when I go down for my walks I usually stand there for about 10 minutes taking it all in when a new window display pops up - they do have the occassional roomy reasonably priced frock.
    I read lots of blogs including a lot of yours to the right - I am lazy though and never become a follower unless the author is asking. Lately as well as other older favourites I am really liking Fashion's Most Wanted - I love her book and DVD recs - I have been giving my credit card a serious bashing lately.I also like Restoring the Old Girl.
    I am burning candles like crazy - my house smells so musty with all this rain and I have those horrible camel closets in every room hidden away sucking up all the moisture in the air (I hope)

  32. Dear FF,
    I admire you much for the strength to declutter!! I like decluttering, too-----but only when work is done! What can I throw away, feel I sorry when I give it away and, and, and.
    But to declutter is very good for your soul.
    I read about this in a book from Karen Kingston:"Clear your clutter with Feng Shui".
    It is very inspireing and gives good motivation to do it.
    Today I decluttered my kitchen and now I am happy. But work was hard because I am a little bit lazy.
    Admireing your beautiful home and the books in colours arranged like a rainbow. Many of your books I have too . All the Jackiebooks, Lily Brett etc.
    Best wishes for you and growing FF baby *

  33. There's so such thing as chic maternity wear in this country. I found that the only solution is to buy clothes that you'd normally wear but just a few sizes bigger. Except for jeans of course, I bought official maternity jeans and wore them a lot. I bought the jeans (and a nice skirt) at Egg Maternity at South Bank.

  34. Dear Ms FF, You are contagious; having caught the decluttering bug but without anything to declutter here, I took myself to my sister's house and helped her declutter her wardrobe. May I say that however good it feels to declutter one's own rubbish, it is 11/10 more enjoyable to help one's dearests to do the same. We were filling up garbage bags with gay abandon between soothing cups of tea. I really admire how you display your jewels. There is no point in having lovely things if one cannot see and enjoy them. I am also with you regarding the ubiquitousness of poor quality fabrics which are foist on persons who want better. I spent last Friday late night shopping clucking disapprovingly about how poorly everything would launder. Spending way too much time reading blogs, I think that the best blogs have an identifiably unique and authentic voice with some range. I love to laugh, think, wonder, and sometimes feel a little sad.

  35. The books look amazing. Please can you action that at my house because i am yet to do so and you seem to be very skilled!!!!
    I know, maternity wear really, really sux. But you look fab whatever.

  36. Re blog question: I'm just wondering, the wider the audience, the wider the range of comments. If you get my drift. And thank-you Kate B. I'm off to do my duty in the elections.

    Re decluttering, armed with two spray bottles, one with diluted bleach and one with diluted sugar soap, I have de mossed and de algaed all the hard landscaping surfaces.

    Dirty green might be the new black but not at my place.

  37. Apparently the weather is to do with solar flares & we have a few more years of it.
    Rain is forecast all the week in Melbourne, which is very unusual as it rarely rains in between christmas & easter. Everything is still green & the entire garden has gone berserk.

    I really like the way you organise your books. I do that with my clothes.

  38. Dear FF, I think a good blog has a happy and loving attitude, with a nice touch of humour - like yours.
    Meanwhile, while you are facing the horrors of maternity wear (at least those horrible bows that poor Princess Diana had to endure have been done away with), others (like me)are trying to figure out what to wear in the middle of this unrelenting rain and humidity.
    Miss P

  39. The reason I like your blog is your down to earthness with a huge splash of glamour. I like that you will pick up some high end gear at Jean Brown and the like but think nothing of dropping into Target or Temt and grabbing a bargain. You come across as very genuine and someone that I would want to be friends with. There is another blog that I drop into every now and again ... while she has got great taste like you she comes across as a bit precious and very very spoilt. I think she still lives at home with mum and is a bit indulged. She also seems to buy things for the label rather than what suits her (now I'm sounding just nasty ... I think its called jealousy). I relate to ... you cook, do your own cleaning, EAT and just appear to be an all round top chick.

  40. I just realised where I recognised M's beautiful top from... Helena Bonham Carter wore one just like this as Elizabeth in The King's Speech. Towards the end of the film. She accessorised it with long strings of pearls, of course. I saw it last night, luffed it like anything. When my Mum went to see it the whole audience applauded in the credits!


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