Sometimes, a girl has to shine …


I feel I am the only woman on earth who hates shopping.  I should clarify that.  It is shopping for clothes in the city that I hate.  Time is precious to me.  Traffic, parking, browsing around shops I consider is an absolute waste of time.  Although, I do enjoy shopping in kitchenware and stationery stores.  Put me in a gourmet shop and I’ll happily zone out for hours.  I can do the same in an antiques shop.

I have spent the last few days avoiding the inevitable.  I have a significant family event on the weekend.  Buying a new outfit has been studiously avoided and almost last on the priority list.  I am running out of time so I have allocated two hours to this today.

Shopping for clothes regionally is fun.  I have got to know shop owners and they greet me by name when I walk in.  They know I’m going to buy something.  There is no overload of tonnes of synthetic clothing made overseas in mass production with a price tag of hundreds.  It is regionally where I find the fabrics I love.  For years I have worn only merino wool, cashmere, cotton, silk, linen and bamboo.  Natural fabrics that breathe.  They feel good against the skin.  And, you can find them more easily regionally where shops have a small selection to browse plus the bonus of a chat and a warm smile.  It is trade done the old fashioned way.  Somewhat like the shop in The Waltons.

Over the last year, my style of dressing has evolved after my son made an interesting observation.  He said I dressed as if I don’t want people to know I’m there.  In part what he observed is true.  Working with people who experience sensory overload I prefer not to wear bright colours, jewellery, make up or perfume.  It is distracting for them and sometimes, even distressing.  So wearing clothes for work that are muted and non-descript has become the norm.

I took my son’s observations on board and, true to my profession, decided to experiment because there are windows of opportunity to dress differently.  Now when I travel, I wear clothes in orange, turquoise, emerald green, yellow, and pink.  I wear sandals that sparkle with bling.  I make a statement. I am alive.  I am here.  It is an interesting experiment.  I’ve found more people chat socially with me at airports.  Cabin crew have asked me where I buy my pashminas.  And, the security ladies comment on my pendants or sandals!  I once got stopped at an airport where the security lady casually commented she had the same style of trousers as I was wearing.  Then she quietly asked me where I bought them because she liked the colour!  I am visible again!

I’ve come to realize, like the plain, ordinary seagull, there are times when a girl needs to shine.

So … I’m off to find something that sparkles on a cold, blustery Perth day.  I am a focused shopper.  I intend to find it in the allocated two hours.

Until next time,

As always

a dawn bird



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