Learning about Fashion and other Friday Afternoon Stories


It’s a warm autumn Friday afternoon. I’m sitting on the family room sofa, computer on my knee. Now and then I gaze out the window. I can see gum trees. A slight breeze rustles their leaves. Each tree has a crown of cream flowers.

Sitting next to the window is my youngest daughter, Gemma-Rose. She’s writing a new novel. It’s day 1 of Camp NaNoWriMo.

“How many words have you written today?” I ask.


Only 46,423 words to go. Unless, of course, Gemma-Rose’s goal is to write more.

Older sister Sophie has been working on a new novel too. But for the moment, she’s working on something else. She’s doing some research. A big idea is buzzing around her head. This morning I received an email from my friend Luminara. She had a suggestion: Perhaps Sophie can sell her photos online to bloggers.How do photographers sell photos online? Sophie is finding out. She’s sharing words with me: Bluehost, WordPress plugin, domain name…

“Do you think…?” she asks me.

“Maybe,” I reply. “Find out. You could give it a go.”

Charlotte appears with a cup of coffee for me. She takes her own cup back to her bedroom. She’s working on a university assignment.

I can hear the piano. Imogen’s practising the accompaniment for a song she plans to record.

Imogen and I spent this morning together. We went into town on a search for clothes suitable for a music video. We’re not very good with fashion. Usually, we are far too busy to pay much attention to what’s trendy and what’s not. What looks good with what? Sometimes we just don’t know. But we’re finding out.“How about this skirt?” I ask. “And this top?”Imogen tries them on. She turns this way and that and then pulls a face. “You’re right,” I say. “That doesn’t look good at all. I’ll find something else.”

A couple of hours later, we arrive home. Charlotte, Sophie and Gemma-Rose are eager to see what we bought. “Give us a fashion parade,” they demand as Imogen pulls out some clothes from her bag: a long white vest, a black skirt and an embroidered top.

“That vest will look perfect over your white dress.”Imogen returns wearing this combination. She twirls around. “Boots or shoes?” she asks.


“You’ll need some jewellery,” Sophie says.

“How about that green glass pendant? And you can borrow some of my bracelets.”

Imogen gives us another twirl.

“Wow! That looks good!”

“I think we’re getting better at putting clothes together.” Yes, we’re learning.

We’re filming another music video next Wednesday morning. We’ll be getting up before sunrise and heading down to the bush that’s next to the lake in town. We’ve chosen a location that’s green and lush. Tall trees and huge ferns overlook a wooden bridge. Imogen will be singing a song from The Lord of the Rings.“I’ve got some ideas for your hair,” says Sophie. “Elfin braids.”But that’s next week. Back to this afternoon.

“Sophie, I’m writing a blog post. I need some photos.”

“I’ll take some for you, Mum. What are you writing about?”

“What we’re doing on a lazy autumn Friday afternoon.”


I’m also writing about my thoughts. I’m thinking about how delicious new ideas are. It’s exciting chasing them into reality. And I’m pondering learning. We learn when we have a need. Imogen needs to look good in her music videos. And so we have been learning about fashion.


There’s another thing we need to learn:


How do we stop mascara from leaving smudgy marks on the foundation under our musician’s eyes? Do you know the answer to that question? Are you good at applying make-up? And what do you think about fashion?



I didn’t publish a podcast yesterday as usual. If you listened to my last episode you’ll know I’ve changed my posting day from Thursday to Monday.
I’ll be publishing episode 65 next Monday. I’ve already recorded it. I spoke about dealing with our fears and other people’s critical comments, and a few other things as well.  I hope you’ll watch out for it.
I also hope you enjoy the weekend!
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  1. Reply

    A good eye primer base can help as can a touch of pressed powder under the eye before applying any eye makeup including mascara. Xxx

    1. Reply


      We're grateful for your make-up suggestion. We shall try it. Mascara marks on top of foundation are so frustrating. They're hard to wipe away without taking off all the other make-up. Thank you so much for stopping by! xxx

  2. Reply

    New ideas are most imspiting, almost intoxicating stuff.
    "We learn when we have a need" I like that. Surrounded by boys, I never felt the need to learn about fashion. When I was little, my mum bought me clothes, and when my daugther grew up, she was (and still is) my fashionista. I know what I like to wear, and normally go for comfortable, clean and without holes. I seem to be lagging the fashion skill, but maybe if I get the need, I'll learn.
    A song from Lord of the Rings sounds super exciting. I keep guessing which one.
    Makeup … hmm I did a lot in shcool, I was make up artist at school plays for about 10 years, but that was long ago. I remember small brushes to remowe excess mascara before the actors were let loose. But that was long ago and half a world away.

    PS. your introductory sentences are pure magic and petry.

    1. Reply


      Oh yes, new ideas are certaining intoxicating. I can see you get excited by them too!

      "comfortable, clean and without holes" That sounds like me! Now and then, I add a pair of earrings or look for a pretty shirt, but usually I don't notice what I'm wearing. Too busy writing or chasing all those wonderful ideas!

      You were a make-up artist? Another reason why it's sad we live so far apart: You could have shared your skills with us.

      Imogen did tell me the name of the song she is going to sing, but I have forgotten it. It's one by Enya. The girls like Enya's music. They are practising one of her songs to sing together in a future video. That should be fun. Four girls singing together. I hope I don't have to operate the cameras while they're performing!

      I know the gum trees didn't have anything to do with the story, but that's where I started not knowing where I'd end up. I'm glad you liked those words. The gum trees are looking very beautiful at the moment. The flowers are way up high and we can't pick them, but the cockatoos have tossed a lot of them down to the ground and I've gathered them up.

      Lovely to chat. Enjoy the weekend!

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