Sunday, October 18, 2009

Farewell Haute Couture

After the stressful time of moving house and having to reconnect telephones and internet with mostly unhelpful call centres and on more than one occasion making their automated voice recognition systems break down and cry, I dedicated a weekend to me.

A me weekend was about all of life's little pleasures like good eggs in your favourite cafe and of course that all important credit card viagra known as retail therapy. Now time was not of the essence on my me weekend so I took a leisurely stroll through my local department stores. It was an experience to be only compared to shopping at the local tip. Now whilst I understand that both department stores are under major renovation (at the same time so customers will have no choice than to shop amongst hoardings and hard aisle dead-ends) however solar systems have come and gone in the time they have taken to do this. The Myer store in particular with its shoe department resembling something from a poor eastern block country with gaffer tape holding the carpet down and brown stains all over the roof. To make matters worse they make their customers queue up for service at the door of the shoe reserve as if begging for bread. "Please madam, may I have a size 8 in the black?" No piss off you filthy scum bag customer grovelling around the floor with your sweaty feet and smelly half stockings. Actually, the staff are patient and should be paid extra for having to work in an over sized dumpster.

Giving up on shoes, I spent a few hours of indulgence at the Kino watching Valentino The Last Emperor courtesy of Lady Melbourne. Bliss. The movie was a behind the scenes look at the final year of work of Italian designer Giovanni Valentino and a peak into his private life and oh my god what a life. In one of the first scenes he and his partner and entourage have boarded their private plane with almost everyone seated including a row of 5 pug dogs that travel everywhere with him. A women gently alerts our Mr Valentino that there is no seat for her due to the row of dogs in first class. The dogs are quickly dispatched onto Valentino and his partner's laps like they are hand towels. Hilarious. Beautiful shots of his home in Paris, his boat in Venice and the house of Valentino in Rome. The gowns for the catwalks are hand sewn by a team of over 100 seamstresses who contend with executive waring financial interests and designer temper tantrums. There is a great scene at the end of the movie with Valentino and Karl Lagerfeld (Chanel) reminiscing over some 1960's designs when Valentino says something to the effect of, there is you and me and the rest is trash. And I think perhaps he's not wrong. Farewell haute couture.


  1. They're still renovating Myer? They were well into it when we were there in June! I guess I'll have to focus on Chapel Street and Brunswick when I head back in November then! I'm not doing that awful basement thingy again.

  2. Ah, Lorna, there's nothing like a drool over the lifestyles of the filthy rich and famous to make one feel very ordinary.

  3. I don't feel ordinary Rowe, just poor.