Thursday, December 9, 2010

Shaking up stress

Image sourced from

Grumble, grumble, grumble. This is the sound of frustration. Agitation, for me, comes in stages, with each stage characterised by some sort of distorted noise. For example, the beginning of irritation could sound something like a low rumbling, cussing underneath my breath - Mutley style. Depending on the severity of the matter, you could possibly hear a loud GRRR, or perhaps even a string of nonsensical profanities spilling from my mouth. Hey, nobody's perfect, right?

Now, I have tried a few different things to alleviate stress and aggravation, with my most recent discovery being children's movies. Coraline, Where The Wild Things Are, The Secret of NIMH, Beauty and The Beast, and Toy Story 3 have all silenced my incessant complaining, played a part in preventing me from flipping out at screaming toddler on a nine-hour flight from Hong Kong to Sydney (GRRR!!), and boosted my mood from Ground Zero to sky-high - all within an hour and a half of each viewing.

Image sourced from

So, if you're feeling grumpy or a little wired, take the time out to watch a family favourite. If only all the world's problems could be cured with a dose of Disney.

Home is where the heat is

Image sourced from

Yes, I deserve a slap on the wrist for leaving my blog untouched for so long. Since my last post, I became acquainted with Wuthering Heights and the infamous fog swallowing up the moors of Worscester in England, scoped out the military attire, coupled with trenchcoats, on the streets of London (as well as catching up with my darling friend, Erin!), stayed in a castle in Florence, Italy, got completely saturated trudging the busy streets of Rome, as well as eating five-star Yum Cha in China and Hong Kong (so delicious!!).

After experiencing the bone-chilling bitterness of the fast-approaching European winter, coming home to the sweltering heat and humidity has definitely warranted the abuse of airconditioning in my house. Oh and not to mention trips to the beach and agonising whether to toughen up and dive into the icy water or not. It is so lovely to be home, sweet home.

Friday, November 19, 2010


It has been a very busy few weeks, hence the lack of blog posting. After travelling for 36 hours (with six hours spent admiring the refined leather attire of Italians in Rome airport) I finally made it to Interlaken, Switzerland - my first stop in Europe. From the Swiss Alps, to the Red Light District in Amsterdam, followed by visiting family in Germany, I am now sitting in a hotel room in Paris.

Sacré Coeur - this picture certainly does not do this religious landmark any justice. Image sourced from

The busy streets of Paris are not only lined with intricate architecture, but also many beautiful people, decked head to toe in fur, walking their dogs - both big and small - while smoking cigarettes. So far, I have climbed part of the Eiffel Tower, lit a candle in Notre Dame for Kathrina's aunt, Ulla and palmed off a touchy busker at the Sacré Coeur. This trip has also been quite a culinary experience, as I have tasted the most delicious red wine and last night I ate escargot - I think this will make my Mum jealous; she loves French food! There is still so much to see, but today is going to be dedicated to the Opera Theatre, the Galleries Lafayette and the Louvre (!!!).

The Notre Dame Church. During the French Revolution, revolutionaries cut off the heads of the concrete priests, believing that they were kings. The heads were eventually glued back on once these people realised that the so-called concrete kings were, in fact, members of the Catholic church. Image sourced from
However, even though I feel very fortunate to be in Europe, I miss the Australian sun and a handful of people who I wish could see all of this with me.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


Image sourced from


Image sourced from

I’m feeling terribly uninspired today. It could have something to do with the shifting kaleidoscope that has parked itself behind my eyes; it is constantly diverting my mind to something different – a feature article that needs finishing, a suitcase that needs packing, then compressing or an over-analytical brain that needs to be squeezed out like an orange.

My answer to escaping the labyrinth inside my head: writing lists. I love lists. From dictionaries and thesauruses, to positives versus negatives, there’s nothing more clarifying than a sense of reason offered by a list.

In homage to listing and the charity it has bestowed upon me for, well, I’d say almost seven years, I am posting my most recent inventory of trivialities; I’m hoping this will spark a list-making session within you.

1. Semicolons and em dashes. Yes, I’m a sucker for syntax and it has sort of gone beyond obsessive

2. Only having one week until I jump on a plane to explore Europe, the UK, and China

3. Letters, emails and text messages; I’m all about the written word – in any form

4. Cupcakes and an extra-hot cup of English Breakfast

5. Having a key to Chonni and DD’s house!

6. Sydney

7. The smell of swiftly flipping through the pages of a brand-new magazine. Weird, right?

8. Dropping abbreviated words in face-to-face conversations, but refraining from using them when punching characters into my phone

9. The Extraordinary Ernie and Marvellous Maud series

10. 2009

1. The Big Bang Theory; I just don’t get why people like that show!

2. People who don’t use an indicator when turning

3. Shaken water – don’t ask

4. The aftermath of an all-nighter

5. Hearing Powderfinger and Green Day on the radio 24/7

6. Olives and fetta – I’m a freak, I know!

7. People who don’t like dogs

8. Deadlines

9. Food without a generous helping of salt

10. 2010

I can not think of a better way of venting. Seriously.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Help out CLEO!

Image sourced from

The Christmas aftermath can leave us with maxed-out credit cards and cash-less wallets. String a chord with you? Our answer to this: The Little Black Budget Book.

We’re currently working on a story that provides people across Australia with restaurant prices that won’t break the bank, special drink deals and budget beauty hotspots hidden in each capital city. So, if you have any thoughts on this issue, it’s time to share with the rest of us! We’re looking for ideas surrounding student rates, beauty school discounts, and bars with cheap cocktails – anything that helps to save a buck!

Help with this is needed from all over Australia and will be truly appreciated. Feel free to email me at

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Je t'aime Abbey Lee

October 2010. Imaged sourced from Vogue Australia.

Last week, I was combing the magazine shelves of my local newsagency for something I hadn't already read this month. It was at that moment that I saw the striking cover of Vogue Australia, framing Abbey Lee's flawless face with red and blue text. Abbey Lee has been the cover girl for Vogue Australia numerous times, but twice in one year? Total girl-crush. 

March 2010. Image sourced from

March 2009. Image sourced from

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


I watch way too much television and have a sick obsession with a handful of movie moments that I hope I can somehow duplicate into my own life - gross, cliche and corny, I know!

Between the music, Rachel Bilson's 90's-looking get-up, Mischa Barton's defined cheekbones and the fact that this scene gives me butterflies each time I view it, I'm sure that after watching this, you will attempt to strategically plot your own movie-moment - OC style.

Nostalgia, huh?

I don't know what I love more about this movie: Heath Ledger's lush locks or the modern spin it places on Shakespeare's Taming of the Shrew. Actually, I'd probably have to say it's all Heath.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Fierce & Fish-ous

Last week, I was watching repeat episodes of Gossip Girl and it turns out that celebrity guests, like Hilary Duff, drop in to cause some trouble, Little J’s role is to cool-ify the term ‘goth’, while Serena and Blair take turns in showcasing a myriad of styles and trends that are later copied by women across the globe.

It was during one particular episode that Serena – played by the insatiably stunning, Blake Lively – lands a job as a publicist and attends a movie premiere with her client. Serena rocked a loose fish plait that sat on her shoulder which complimented her sequinned dress.

I’m not sure if it was admiration or pure envy that re-sparked my love for fish plaits, but I certainly know that Gossip Girl was the catalyst.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


Dang, it seems as though I am not 'cool' enough to sustain a friendship with some people on Facebook.

We're all guilty of aimlessly wandering Face-space, right? Getting lost in profile after profile with each click of the mouse, a person can acquire enough gossip material to write their own reality television series. Facebook is the online arena where relationships are made and broken, all within the span of a few hundred characters. Facebook is also home to the 'cool' class and the 'Remove from Friends' button - a mechanism determining the difference between virtual friends and foes.

While cyber-stalking this afternoon, I became aware of a few private profiles that I was once able to view due to our agreed 'friend' status. This realisation took me back to a feature article I wrote about exploring whether a Facebook etiquette exists within the growing digital age. I mean, going from 'In a Relationship' to 'Single' within this social media landscape is a more reliable device of making a statement than having an in-depth gossip session with your girlfriends. Hmph, it's about time people learned some manners!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Shoe Blues

I have five weeks until my European, African and Chinese adventure, however, I have a serious case of the shoe blues. After finding an assortment of striking booties that will define the northern hemisphere's Fall trends for 2010, my trip has become secondary to the incessant desire I have to blow a serious wad of cash on some new shoes. Sure, bling is back, with chunky rings finding their home on every finger of a woman's hand, but nothing beats a dramatically over-the-top pair of statement heels.

Rachel Comey Sir Barton Boot in Gold. Image sourced from Creatures of Comfort.

Acne Admire Wedge in Purple. Image sourced from Creatures of Comfort.

Thank you very much, Mercibeaucoup!

Does the title of my blog post seem a little nonsensical? While on this afternoon, I came across the eclectic Japanese streetwear designer Eri Utsugi’s line, Mercibeaucoup.

The cute and crazy, Eri Utsugi. Image sourced from the

I personally want to thank this brilliantly unconventional designer for brightening up my Thursday afternoon and kicking some pre-Christmas spirit into the kid in me. Introducing the Mercibeaucoup line - an inspirational collection stemming from the designer's recent trip to Finland. Think Alexander McQueen tarten meets Japanese anime on Christmas Eve. I am now pining for candy canes, tinsel, and cruising the Christmas light circuit of around my neighbourhood. Using the words of my darling boyfriend, I'm Christmas Eve-ing.
Feeling Christmas-ee? If only Australia experienced a winter wonderland during the holiday season. Image sourced from

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Huh? What did you say?

According to research in the US reported on the New York Times' website, one in five teenagers now have hearing problems – a steep inclination compared to one in seven teens who suffered from the loss of hearing ten years ago. The study showed that although the results can not be directly associated with exposure to loud noise, teens have been reported as saying that  it is simply a case of being unaware that they are listening to music at dangerously large volumes.

This finding resonates all too familiarly with me. Image sourced from

Lucy In Disguise

OK, so as some of you may have noticed, I tend to rave on about vintage clothing – where ever it may be sourced from. Well, while reading Grazia UK today at work I discovered that the pregnant Lily Allen, with half-sister Sarah, has opened the vintage boutique, Lucy In Disguise.

I.WANT.THIS.DRESS. Lily Allen pictured with half-sister Sarah. Image sourced from

When news of celebrities taking on business ventures that seem, even for them, out of their league, is slapped across the glossy pages of magazines, I always hear the sound of an old-school cash register bouncing open and shut. Considering a vintage garment is the ‘it’ staple in wardrobes across the world of late, I thought Lily would reap in royal benefits from the pre-loved threads she plans on selling. Although the prices are expected to range from $100 to $6000AUD, you may be able to snag a one off piece for a relatively reasonable price - well, that’s if you fly to the UK and visit her store. In the meantime, I think I’ll wait for Lucy In Disguise to move online.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Satchel Situation

OK, so on the topic of satchels, I came across an interesting article on The Guardian’s website last week that indulged in ways to rock this preppy accessory. According to this story, satchels are kiddy-friendly, defined and restricted to a younger, tween-age demographic. The first thing that came to mind upon reading this was, are they seriously insinuating a mutton dressed like lamb theory here?
Mulberry Alexa bag (named after Miss Chung), Fall 2010. Sourced from Fashion's Most Wanted.

Satchels excite me. Between the idea of soft leather and an item that issues a diverse range of looks, what’s not to love about this style? I mean, it can be worn across the body, the strap can be tied in a knot and thrown on your shoulder as a side bag, or, like the edgy Alexa Chung, a satchel can hung from the inside of your elbow. I don’t think it is an age appropriate accessory at all; if anything, it is quite a timeless piece to arm your fashion wardrobe with.
If Alexa can do it, so can we. Image sourced from

Monday, September 20, 2010

Mesmorised by J Mendel

While traveling the US last year, I met some incredibly generous, hospitable people. From my Hunter S. Thompson wannabe boyfriend (Tyler, I know you’re laughing right now), to my darling roommate from New Mexico, I was truly devastated to wave them all farewell earlier this year. I was especially saddened to say goodbye to a young and fabulous New Yorker who so generously gave me his Priscilla – the Louis Vuitton satchel bag he had sported for years – while we chatted over drinks in a bar in Chelsea. Alex, a designer for the illustrious New York label, J Mendel is New York personfied as he exudes style and all things classic. Alex recently showcased his talent with J Mendel at New York Fashion Week. Envious? Totally.

Read this wonderful review of this label’s efforts at NYFW on Even though Alex and I only shared a one-off chance encounter, this article caused me to tilt my head, release an embarrsingly goofy grin, and feel quite proud of my American friend. 

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Bags that don't break the bank

So, my purse is currently parched and thirsty for some serious cash. Consequently, this drought is deterring me from moving forward with my Alexander Wang bag campaign. I have spent countless hours contemplating ways of ascertaining AW's Jena clutch but coming up empty handed.

Swedish stylist, and creator of the blog Fashion Squad, Carolina Engman shows off her AW Jena clutch

Well, thankfully, Singapore's self-taught baker, Felicia, came up with a way to cater to my materialistic needs - as well as my sinful sweet-tooth - without fatally dehydrating my dollar-dry wallet.

Applying her own methods, determination, and creativity in her quest to give her friend Mulberry's Alexa bag, Felicia made a replica - entirely out of cake. I think this delicious gesture beats any leather handbag, don't you agree?


It’s hard to stand out amongst a sea of hipsters competing for the title, Most Unique, Weird, Whacky, and Original. After churning through search engines and websites while looking for tea cup cozies, I came across a piece of jewelry that arrested me with its matchless appeal: chrdesigns' handmade silver bird nest ring with golden eggs.

Using silver Parawire, chrdesigns employed basket weaving techniques to construct the nest, then dropped in three golden freshwater pearls to complete the package. I truly admire the bizarre, yet brilliant approach to the creative process and design of producing this trinket. Priced at only $26USD, chrdesigns can custom make you your own nest ring to suit the size of your finger, as well as giving you a selection of different coloured materials to choose from.

Stop. Check pulse. Take a breath. OK, I have recovered. Now, to find my credit card.

The way to a woman’s heart

Chocolate is no longer just an aphrodisiac to soothe heart-break. Occasionally snacking on what was once conceived as a guilty pleasure, chocolate actually reduces the risk of heart failure within older women. Now, this isn’t a pro-cocoa crusade validating the excessive amount of sweets I eat. This discovery is the result of research conducted in Sweden, concluding that women who indulge in one to two doses of chocolate a week reduce the chance of suffering heart failure by 32%.

It’s time to reunite with my best friends, Lindt, Cadbury, and Guylian – it has certainly been too long.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Crushing on The Sartorialist

Fact: The Sartorialist has been recognised as Time Magazine’s Top 100 Design Influencers. Fact: You’ll never find more beautiful, yet naturally, stylish people huddled together in a parade of paparazzi-style happy snaps on one website other than The Sartorialist. Fact: This blog site leaves me wondering if I could marry New York City, like Carrie Bradshaw married the Manolo Blahnik brand. It could happen, right?

The mastermind behind The Sartorialist

New York City, from my perspective, epitomises a best friend, mother, brother, a dog named Chako, all wrapped in one: home. Anyone feel like shouting me a ticket? Thanks to this unbelievable blog, I get my NYC-fix, coupled with style trends that are effortlessly cool – an ideal way to round off a busy day of transcribing interviews. Agree?

Soho, one day, we will be one.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Not sure if I mentioned earlier, but I happen to work as an (unpaid) editorial intern for a magazine – yes, the mag-hag is putting her aimless ranting and obsession with the printed word to practice. Well, today is a monumental day for this self-confessed magazine hoarder (OK, I’ll stop narrating in the third person): I was sent a gift from Nudie Juice for writing a piece about their delicious coconut water in last month’s issue!
Fastened with a sweet, satin bow, this purple bag held some complimentary samples and a hand-written note, thanking me for the blurb I had written about Nudie in the magazine!

I can honestly say that flavoured water has not excited me more!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Playing dress-ups

It is common knowledge that vintage shopping is directing traffic in the fashion world. Vintage boutiques have had a retail epiphany, jacking up the dollar signs on one person’s trash, selling it as a costly pre-loved treasure. Steering away from second-hand clothes bins, what some people may not realise is that hunting for a one-of-a-kind staple garment can be as simple (and successful) as raiding your stylish, older sister’s wardrobe – or mother’s, in my case. Unleash the dress up box.

With style icons like Gaga making taffeta trendy and cigarette-couture cool, dress-up boxes are vintage-lovers’ Holy Grail.

Whipping out a stepladder, climbing to the top of my Mum’s cupboard, and pulling down her box of dress-ups (with her permission, of course), I found an assortment of fun, original pieces to add to my own collection. Tucked away in the depths of what seems like the magical wardrobe of Narnia, I was transported to her days as a punk anarchist during the late 70’s, early 80’s. I came across the black leather jacket, equipped with zips and batwing sleeves, that she had blown her two-week pay-packet on, as well as an incredible black, pink, and purple tulle skirt that Mum said, "defined her youth".

Pixie Geldof knows how to rock n' revamp her wardrobe with a vintage leather jacket

What made the whole experience so unique was the commentary that complimented the discovery of each item of clothing. I mean, I knew my Mum was a wild one in her early twenties, but to actually visualise her in these clothes was like putting a forgotten name to a familiar face – these clothes personified the person my mum was at my age.

The clothes one person stowed away from their past in an unmarked dress-up box, could be another’s secret fashion weapon – a weapon that not only brings individuality to the forefront of someone’s closet, but something that serves as an eco-friendly tool that is a great way to save some cash.

So, what’s in your dress-up box? It’s time for a retro-revival, ladies.

I just don't get it!

There are a number of things I am attempting to grapple with at the moment, with one of the less money-related issues being people wearing thongs on a rainy day. I truly don’t understand the thought process people go through when deciding to slip on a pair of flip-flops to tackle a miserable, inclement day. Soggy feet, water sitting inconveniently between your toes, and the sound of squeaky rubber – gross, right?

Anyone in agreeance?

Smitten with gingerbread

Hasn’t it been such a long time? Apologies on my part. Hopefully, the sweet treat I have in store for you won’t just soothe your Bits & Bobs craving (note the hint of sarcasm), but will also leave you pining for gingerbread and a hot, milky cup of tea – can you think of anything more delightful? Didn’t think so.

Yes, I know we’re waving an enthusiatic wave of goodbye to the cooler months, but I just couldn’t keep this winter delight to myself! These gingerbread houses have parked themselves quite comfortably on the edge of mugs, thanks to the incredible Megan at This unbelievably talented lass even teaches you how to make these tea-time embellishments yourself! Delicious!

I love nerds

A couple of years ago while watching the first season of The OC, I became love-smacked with Anna’s quirky style and disposition, as well as the fact that she made out with Seth numerous times. This television experience made me (embarrassingly) a love sick teen, coveting an Orange County experience and a skinny, nerdy boyfriend. I mean, think about it: Adam Brody glamourised ‘geek’ and introduced the world to boys in skinny jeans and Chucks.

Well, ladies, want to transform your boyfriend’s wardrobe to geek him out? Check out this hip-to-be-square (I didn’t find this term on an episode of Sesame Street, what are you talking about?) website to get your fix: Seth Cohen, you will be mine.

Last week's nerdboyfriend inspiration, Sir Ian McKellan.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Ellie 4 JC

As you all are aware, I have a sick obsession with magazines; when I don’t have a hard copy sitting in my hands, I fossick through various mag websites for information.

Only yesterday, doing the mag-hag rounds, I found myself on Instyle Australia’s page, gawking at a pair of Chanel clogs. Clogs, like cupcakes and wearing socks with sandals, are globe trotting, making appearances in blogs, websites, magazines internationally. I recently purchased two pairs of clogs that have been glued to my feet.

My favourites – Jeffrey Campbell Snick Wedge and Jeffrey Campbell Charlie Wooden Clog

Sharp and shrill, Jeffrey Campbell is screaming into ladies’ shoe collections across the world. JC manages to balance aesthetics, practicality and affordability with his ready-to-wear shoe designs – from towering, glam-rock wedges, to knock-on-wood clogs, this US based designer has created footwear for women that can be worn all day in the office, then coupled with a Friday night ensemble for a night out in the city. I am totally smitten with Jeffrey Campbell, thanking him for his creative eye for style, comfort and economical understanding – a pair of JC’s will not break budget, I assure you.

What do you think Bits & Bob-sters? Get your check of approval? Invest in a pair, or 3! Seriously.

Cool and Kickin’ back... in style

Amongst the vast spread of rumours circulating around the weird and wonderful things an iPhone is capable of, Apple have out done themselves to the extent that they have bridged the gap between unorganised, fashion no-hopers and those who eptomise the notion of style, itself. How so? The ‘Cool Guy’ iPhone application.

By taking some happy snaps of the clothes hanging in one’s wardrobe, the Cool Guy program catalogues each item, so that no garment is ever forgotten. A person can consult this application when deciding what to wear for the day, putting together outfits from a mosaic of photographs. Wait, wait, wait – the Cool Guy also has a handful of fun features, including Wishbag element that encourages a person to take a picture of something they see in a store, allowing them to look back on it days later.

As seen on, the Cool Guy applications leaves us with a fabulously geeky gadget, that, despite it’s difficulty to use, promises to slap a little cool in ever nerd’s look. Seth Cohen, anyone?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Ballin' Bakery

Cupcakes are well and truly taking over the world (if only life were so simple!). A rainbow of coloured icing and decorative, edible ornaments are sending those with a sweet-tooth straight to the dentist to fill the sugar-deep cavities left by this sweet, little baked good. Certainly all worth the pain, right?

Swapping couture with cupcakes, then stirring in a dollop of creativity, these Fashion Cupcakes are giving those high-fashion models a run for their money.

Going beyond hunger, it would be murderous to devour one of these little gems.

Reading magazine backwards with the mag-hag

OK, when it comes to a handful of meticulously selected material possessions, I am a bit nutty. Shoes, velvet, nail polish, buttons, magazines, my laptop – these items receive my complete, uninterrupted attention; with their matte surfaces they each somehow manage to sparkle in my direction. So, as you – the few Bits & Bob-sters who aimlessly stumble across my blog – may recognise, is that these inanimate objects fuel my writing and in a way, stimulate my desire to push my credit card limit into the dire depths of debt (alliteration is annoyingly amusing – as is assonance).

Well, this blog entry reveals a little about my magazine addiction; I’m like a die-hard MJ fan, purchasing, reading, engaging with anything that remotely relates to my muse. When I pick up a brand new mag, its crisp and unmarked pages intact and untouched, I flip it over, reading and scanning articles and spreads from back cover to front. Once I have performed a preliminary analysis of the content, I re-read the magazine over the next week, sucking the life from it. So, what you can all probably gather from this admission is that:

No. 1: I have a ridiculously profound love and appreciation for magazines
No. 2: This obsession is sort of excessive and uncanny – I am a mag-hag!

Now, now, there is something interesting to be mentioned within this entry my sweets: my quirky method of mag-ing (reading a magazine – get it? Derr! Dang, my urban dictionary is lacking flair!) is reflected in the way Japanese magazines are produced. While studying abroad last year in the US, I shared a dorm suite with seven other girls who came from Puerto Rico, America, Greece and Japan – one of my Japanese roommates, a fellow mag-hag, shared in the universal love for the printed pop culture bible. She would have her family send her favourite magazines from Japan to the US (yeah, I may have had my fav Aussie mags sent to me, as well). Understanding each other’s interest in magazines, we decided to swap; when Hitomi gave me her magazine, she instructed me to flip it so that I would be reading it backwards. I recall thinking, despite our cultural and linguistic differences, we are still able to share something unique. I then glanced down at the reversed mag, noticing that I wasn’t staring at an advertisement typical of the last page of a magazine, but a glossy, front cover. Huh? Well, as we, Westerners, have been taught to read from right to left, the Japanese do the complete opposite – wow, right?

As I read the forwards magazine backwards (contradictory? Not in this circumstance), my love for this print medium solidified, growing to appreciate it as world-wide mode of communication with each publication tailored to a specific group of people.

So, I wonder what Hitomi thinks of Australia’s Frankie magazine – reading a forwards magazine backwards? I really must remember to ask her!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Unraveling time traveling

Australia is the world’s largest island and smallest continent, mostly detached from the rest of the world. Exaggeration? Certainly not! While sitting on a busy New York City subway train last November, my friends and I discovered that we weren’t the only Aussies taking a bite out of the Big Apple; the packed carriage was predominantly occupied by Australians. Yes, this may be just one example, but even if we concentrate on the idea of differing international time zones, it is clear that this country is somewhat segregated from other nations – Australia, undoubtedly, is the Land Down Under.

Now, with globe trotting comes an inevitable process that causes disorientation, bizarre sleeping patterns, and at times, a severe case of grumpiness: jetlag. Speaking from experience, I have spent days in foreign countries, torn between the desire to venture outside and explore, and the necessity to allow my body clock to adapt to the new environment.

Information and communication technologies (ICT) have played an integral role in attempting to bridge the digital divide between countries of the world, allowing people to form and sustain relationships, particularly through the World Wide Web. I have spent hours on Skype having conversations with friends I made overseas, as well as writing emails and Facebook messages. Indeed, ICT have definitely made it possible for people to break physical boundaries and communicate internationally, but there is one problem that can not be solved by even the most advanced technologies: differentiating time zones. It is difficult, frustrating even, trying to organise a time to speak with someone who lives in say, the US. Australia is 14 hours ahead of America, making it increasingly difficult to talk to one of my best friends who lives in Albequerque, New Mexico and my boyfriend who lives in Buffalo, New York.

Ah, but don’t fret, my Bits & Bob-sters (seriously, I am just waiting for a publisher to ask me to write an Ellie-dictionary), the negative impact of time zones can be defeated. My boyfriend has traveled from the US to Australia, staying with me for six weeks. What this means is that we don’t have to sit for hours on Skype at random hours of the day, anticipating the disconnection of the Internet, or uphold our relationship via daily emails. This solution does involve burning a hole in a person’s wallet, but there are positive results of such action – discovering new cultures, meeting other travellers and locals, and overcoming geography as a relationship setback.

Luckily, there isn’t one of us out there who has to be conscious of physically traveling between the past, present and future, like Henry De Tamble from The Time Traveler’s Wife (Bits & Bob-sters: read that back ASAP!). Then we’d really be in a spot of bother, wouldn’t we?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

My feet are thanking Brazil and recycled tyres. Wait.. what?

Brazilian-based brand, Melissa are giving ladies across the world the opportunity to join them in wearing recycled tyres as footwear. Say whaaaa? Yes, my fellow footwear fiends, women can now wear show-stopping heels while contributing to saving the environment.

I remember buying my first pair of Melissa shoes. With a cup of tea in hand on a Sunday afternoon, I was scouring ebay for, well, anything; online shopping is my kryptonite, gahhh! After spending far too much time flicking through page after page of search results for platform wedges, I came across a scarlet-coloured and velvet pair with a Minnie Mouse peep toe and a petite ankle strap. GAAAW-JUSS! They were reasonably priced, but due to being shipped from a US seller, I ended up being hit with a rather hefty postage bill. My PayPal account certainly copped a bit of a bruising that day, ouch!

I later learned that this brand is internationally recognised as being a strong advocate for sustainable fashion, saving the environment by utilising materials like old car tyres while creating their original pieces. By using these recycled materials, Melissa shoes are lessening the amount of carbon gases omitted into the atmosphere from the burning of rubber tyres.

Catching the attention of shoe-lovers worldwide, Melissa shoes have partnered up with eclectic designer, Vivienne Westwood, releasing numerous ranges of sweet and sassy heels – collections that have sold out and restocked in online stores across the globe.

Saving the world in 6-inch platforms sounds like some over exaggerated motif typical of Sex and the City. Hey, I love SJP, but really, with all the hype around the new movie, you’d think it was all about how four women finding the bloody Holy Grail while wearing Manolo Blahnik’s. But, could you honestly think of anything better? Buying an affordable pair of to-die-for heels that largely contribute to preserving the world we live in and erasing the carbon footprint that we, and our predecessors, have trampled the earth with. Well, step aside Carrie, as women all across the world are proving to be large contributors in preserving the environment by showing off a pair of Melissa’s.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Anyone got the number for Lacuna Inc.?

How convenient would it be if Lacuna Inc. from Michael Godry’s, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind existed? For those of you who haven’t seen this film, off your butt, head to your local video... correction, DVD shop and hire it. Not tomorrow: now. Thanks to the introduction of DVD vending machines, people can now rent out their favourite action, romantic, or chick flick from their local supermarket at anytime. Wow, right?

Anyway, diverting back to my point, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind tells the story of two anguished lovers struggling to deal with the reality of parting ways. Both Joel and Clementine, played by Jim Carey and Kate Winslet, undergo a procedure which erases the other from their memory.

There are certainly periods of time, fears, and people I wouldn’t mind having wiped from my memory. Think about it, you could truly save yourself an immense amount of time scrutinising, over analysing, antagonising... OK, so overload of adverbs, my bad. It just sounds sort of cool - well, sort of. Right? No? Dang it! God, I keep getting sidetracked!

So, basically, what I am getting at is that the smells, tastes, street signs, television shows and blog posts (random?) are just a few of the inanimate objects and sensory experiences that serve as obtrusive reminders typifying elements of one’s past - memories preferred to be forgotten. Although, without these memories, I could make the same mistakes I once made, creating a string of problems later on in life.

I guess the convenience of wiping one’s mind of affliction and pain, spite and anger, can prove to be quite an inconvenient further down the track.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Doc Martens, garage sales and shaking off “fashion fad-ists”: Revamping the term “vintage”

I was the only kid not wearing shiny, black Clarkes on my first school photograph day. Sitting in the front row, alongside my fellow, fun-size Kindergarten-ers (I prefer to describe vertically challenged people, like myself, as “fun-size”, rather than short, small, etc. Sounds endearing, right?), Mum had sent me to school wearing a pair of second hand, brown leather rock climbing boots. I remember showing some of my friends this photo a few years ago; as they barked like hyenas, I wondered what they were laughing at - the fact that my Mum sent me to school in op shop attire, or that, to this day, I sport similar, weird and wacky, outfits?

I am not alone in this venture - a member of the vintage and op shop scene. Just take a walk around your neighbourhood shopping centre; people are decked out, head to toe, in recycled clothing and vintage shoes, bags, and accessories. Although, the hypocrisy that some of these people are encompassing – conforming alongside a troop of other fashion fad-ists (Urban Dictionary would have a field day sifting through my blog posts and articles
for new terms and phrases) striving to be an individual within an already heavily consumerist and conformist society – their looks are becoming predictably typical of the ‘vintage’ category. Not convinced? Well, this accusation is justified through the increasing popularity of Doc Martens. I was once called “Stomper” for teaming my worn-out black Docs with a 1950’s inspired, Rockabilly frock when going out for drinks with friends. Two years later, and those same, name-calling girls are embracing this sassy, edgy look, stomping their hypocritical arses around every pub, club, restaurant… you get my point. Fashion fad-ists and walking contradictions, indeed. What was once original, distinguished and quaint is now generic, mediocre and cliché.

Ah, but fear not readers (I think my readership only really extends as far as my boyfriend, who I am sure is not too crash hot on receiving shopping and style tips. Did I mention that he too has been wearing Docs for years?), I have a solution to defeat and overcome the now ‘normative’ practice of op shopping: garage sales. People are stinging to separate with their preloved threads, selling them at very low prices in order to clear out their unwanted goods, either because they are preparing to move out, or making room for new bits and pieces. As the overused saying goes: out with the old and in with new. What’s ironic about this is that I get more compliments on the vintage clothes I buy for 50 cents than the pieces I actually have invested a substantial amount of money in.

So, while sipping on a cup of English Breakfast and picking apart and devouring a lemon iced cupcake on a Friday afternoon, be sure to remember to pick up your local newspaper and jot down the Saturday morning garage sales happening in your local area. Reinventing your wardrobe has never been more refreshing, affordable... and fun!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Drunk tarts, open-toe shoes and a bizarre case of appendicitis

Note to self - and other party-goers out there: do NOT wear open-toed shoes if you plan on a night of dancing and debauchery. I made this simple, yet costly mistake, and two weeks after the ‘incident’, the toe inside of the pinkie on my right foot is still beaten up and bruised. Fortunately, this toe is sort of like an appendix; it doesn’t issue or make a vast contribution to the way I live my life, although, when this rogue extension of human matter is uncomfortably pressed, it can truly be a pain in the, um...foot.

OK, so I’m not looking for any sort of attention or sympathy; I am merely writing to warn people of something so terrible that threatens your physical stability (I mean, seriously; with crushed toes, how can you physically balance?), and your shoe-wearing agenda: drunk tarts strutting around in stilettos.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Mary Poppins bag of tricks... and miscellaneous junk

Last year, I bought my first Italian leather bag. This is not a wanky exposé of some tart’s fabulous wardrobe and accessories, because the truth is, I am a member of a not-so-elitist league: broke university students. When embarking on shopping adventures, I start with my regular Saturday morning garage sale circuit, move on to clothes swap events, and end up rummaging the one dollar bin at the local RSPCA charity shop. So, as a university student, buying an Italian leather bag seems like a particularly stupid expenditure, but working for a place that sells them at wholesale prices, why not, huh?

Getting back on track, in all its gorgeousness (apparently, ‘gorgeousness’ is a word. Well, according to Spell Check, anyway) this bag was, and still is, inevitably flawed, bringing to light an interesting dichotomy that I am absolutely positive that many women, and perhaps men, have also struggled with: aesthetics versus practicality.

OK, so my phone will start ringing, and like Mary Poppins and her delightful bag of trinkets and treasures, I toss the contents of my handbag over my shoulder, only to find that I have missed the call, anyway. However, unlike the enchantment of Poppins’ goodie bag and the assembly of all her bits and pieces, fashionably organised within the children's room (she’s gotta’ hook me up!), I am left with a mess of miscellaneous junk scattered around me. Old lip glosses, peanut butter M&M wrappers (I would by far prefer to litter my handbag than the environment. Does my justification erase the fact that my bag is slowly becoming my own personal, mobile garbage bin? Anyone know of a fitted bin liner, designed for handbags?), coins, dust, and busted pens. This bag is terribly gorgeous, yet the practicality is closely similar to that of a potato sack - a pretty schmick potato sack, all the same.

My big, beautiful bag: a dungeon for innate objects, dirt, dust and wait.. what’s that? Something damp? Dang it! How the hell does Mary Poppins do it?!

I wonder if Peaches Geldof has the same probelm I have?