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Less is More

When I am feeling depressed I sometimes go and get a haircut. It makes me look a little different and makes me look a little younger and so makes me feel a bit happier as well. The past week had been particularly tough; I had been stood up and stamped down. I was feeling particularly vulnerable and I felt like a haircut.

I have been going to the same hairdresser for years. Rocky is a young savage looking Lebanese man with a vicious short cropped hairstyle, steroid-pumped muscles that bulge under his tight white t-shirt, sinister tattoos on his thick, dark neck and a voice as soft and delicate as a 4-year-old girl.

“How would you like me to cut your hair today?” he whispered in his little girl voice.

I slumped down in the chair and stared at myself in the mirror. “You can do what you like.”

Rocky’s eyes widened. “Really? Are you sure?”

“Yes, do what you like. I want to look young and groovy.”

Rocky needed no further encouragement. I sat in the chair for hours and that haircut still holds the record for the longest time I have ever sat in a hair salon.

When rocky was finished I sat in the chair and stared at my new young and groovy self. Rocky stood beside me with his hand on my shoulder. He was so proud; tears began to well up in his eyes.

“That is beautiful! Now, you look young and you also look groovy.”

I paid Rocky two hundred dollars and walked out of the salon. I was still depressed. I still felt stood up and stamped down but now I also had short cropped bleached platinum hair with lightning bolts shaved down both sides of my head. (more…)

 

The Flipside of Glamour

I was sitting with Andrew the Family Law Solicitor in a noisy hotel bar opposite the Family Law Courts. Andrew was telling me about the worst date of his life. He had met a girl on a dating website. They had chatted over the phone a few times before they decided to meet, face to face, for the first time.

“I walked into the bar and I saw her sitting at a table. Our eyes met and the greatest look of disappointment swept over her face before she could hide it. I felt like running away but I sat down with her and said hello before she asked if I felt like a drink. I said yes and she walked away…”

I looked at Andrew. “So, did she bring you back a drink before she split?”

“Nuh, I haven’t seen her since”.

“But Andrew, I don’t understand how she could be disappointed with you when your image would be on your profile of the website…”

Andrew picked up his phone and showed me his profile. The image he presented was truly handsome, a dashing hero of supreme masculinity. Andrew is a good looking young man. He just didn’t live up to his own selfie.

The sophisticated country girl will find a similar disparity exists between the glamorous images posted by her city friends onto their social media sites and the true nature of their lives in the city. (more…)

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Warm and Loving

As a little boy growing up in Gatton I remember my father used to stay up after the rest of the family had gone to bed and watch TV by himself. On occasion I would creep out of my bedroom to join him on the couch and fall asleep watching late night TV.

On one such occasion I slunk out of my bedroom, the only light in the house was that from the TV screen, I climbed into the old couch and snuggled up to my father. He was watching “Deliverance”. We made it to the “Duelling Banjos” scene before the creeping menace of the film began to unnerve me. I pressed myself into my father and looked up at him.

“Daddy… you’ll never take me to that place, will you?”

My father gently put his arm around my shoulder and pulled me close.

“Davey… we live in Gatton.”

That confused me. To me Gatton was not a desperate backwater inhabited by sinister hillbillies. Gatton was a warm and loving town where lived my warm and loving family who tended their warm and loving potato farms (which grew warm and loving potatoes).

My father, having grown up in the sophisticated metropolis that was Brisbane in the 1960s had a different perspective of my warm and loving home town.

The sophisticated country girl will discover that many men have this same confusing relationship with particular articles of their clothing. It might be a pair jeans or a shirt that her man has grown up with and still loves. Sincerely believing that, like a fine wine, the article of clothing only improves with age. However, in the eyes of the sophisticated country girl, the article of clothing is no more than a squalid rag that is either well out of fashion or was never in fashion and is better placed in the company of a backwater hillbilly than worn by the object of her affections. (more…)

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Don't Go Unnoticed

Over the course of her life the sophisticated country girl will find herself having to attend the odd family event that she really prefer not to be at. The sophisticated country girl would rather to melt into the back ground, become a wallflower and go unnoticed than to stand out on these occasions. For such affairs the fashion world created the pink pastel.

Pure colours are vibrant, they are beautiful and they attract attention. To make a colour less vibrant, less attractive and to go unnoticed all you have to do is add some white and you have created the pastel. The most self-effacing pastel of all is the pink pastel. The pink pastel is what you wear when your self-esteem is low and you need to camouflage yourself.

Early one morning an unmarried sophisticated country girl finds herself reading her invitation to her pretty younger sister’s wedding ceremony to her handsome, successful merchant banking boyfriend. The ceremony is to be held at his parents’ mansion on Sydney Harbour where the happy young couple are to arrive by helicopter. The sophisticated country girl reads the invitation she has just collected from the run down local post office after a 1 hour drive in 40 degree heat in an old flat tray Land Cruiser with no air conditioning and some unrecognisable road kill stuck to the front bumper. The unmarried sophisticated country girl looks up at the dusty, wind swept street with its empty shops and dismal old pub and wonders if she will ever find a man to love. (more…)

 
Posted In: Fashion, Sound Advice

Being Pointless

My friend Fozzo is an unemployed investment fund manager. One bright sunny afternoon we found ourselves standing in his backyard with our hands on our hips looking at his latest purchase. His young teenage daughters had badgered him enough to buy a fluffy puppy off a website. The little puppy danced around on the lawn in front of us.

“Does he have a name?”

“Yep, the girls have named him Truffle.”

“Cute. What is he?”

“He’s a Shitzu cross Toy Poodle.”

“That makes him a Shitpoo. What’s he do?”

“Nuthin’. He cost me two thousand dollars.”

 

Aside from the purchase of a Shitpoo for two thousand dollars (which would perform as well as any dog pound pup) one of the greatest random acts of pointlessness to infect popular culture in recent years is the tattoo. Tattoos were once the preserve of bike gangs, sailors and half the population Brisbane’s southern suburbs but have managed to trickle up until they now seem to be a ubiquitous part of urban individuals under the age of 40. The problem with tattoos or body art is that it never really accomplishes what it sets out to achieve. (more…)

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Posted In: Sound Advice

Noncompliance

The sophisticated country girl is going come face to face with different situations involving her friends in the city where she will have a choice to toe the line and comply with their dress codes or completely disregard the sartorial norms of her city friends and dress the way she really wants to.

One such occasion is when the sophisticated country girl receives an invitation from one of her city friends to come to morning coffee with her mothers’ group at an inner city café. The invitation will usually be accompanied by the phrase “…It will be really casual”. This is city girl talk for “please wear your trainers and sport clothes and not those western boots you sometimes turn up in….” On arrival at the inner city café the sophisticated country girl will notice that the city girls will all be dressed in tight, multi-coloured workout gear teamed with a pair of bright multi coloured trainers.

It should be noted that a guiding principle of the fashion industry is that no one ever went broke underestimating the public taste. We see this principle applied with force when it comes to work out gear. The sport fashion labels gave up trying to make clingy, black Lycra tights flattering or attractive so instead they decided to make them downright ugly. Tights now come in garish colours and are three quarter length. An awkward length on an unforgiving pair of pants in colours that suit no one. Team them up with a pair of bulky, multi coloured trainers and you have an outfit no one will look good in. Inner city mums immediately adopted it as their morning coffee uniform.

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Posted In: Fashion, Sound Advice

Don’t Put Up With Indecision

I was having lunch with my friend Cameron Williams the stock broker and we couldn’t decide on the wine; he wanted a white while I wanted a red. We thought we would compromise and ordered a bottle of rose’. Half way through the bottle Cameron put his glass down and declared we should have ordered the white or the red instead of pretending to enjoy this god awful rose’. Rose’ is a wine that doesn’t know what it is and it is ordered by people who can’t make up their minds and don’t know what they want.

I’m not sure why rose’ exists at all. On the occasion you really feel like a glass of rose’ – and I can’t imagine the circumstances you actually would – you can simply make a glass or two yourself. Give your glass of Pinot Gris a splash of Pinot Noir and Hey Presto – Rose.

No, you can’t tell the difference between a homemade rose and the store bought variety. Not after a few glasses at any rate.

I have this same issue with short sleeved shirts. A t-shirt knows what it is – simple and casual. A polo shirt knows what it wants to be – smart and casual. A long sleeved shirt is a real shirt and that is all. A short sleeved shirt – you know the type; a collar, buttons up the front, short sleeves – can’t decide to be a t-shirt or a real shirt. It ends up in nowhere land; too casual to wear to work (unless of course, you happen to be working in Brisbane in 1975) and too awkward to be relaxed. They look as though someone was trying to save money or couldn’t be arsed to finish the job properly.

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Welcome to “A Country Girls Guide to Style and Sophistication”. This site is dedicated to providing the sophisticated country girls of regional Australia with helpful hints, sound advice and worldly guidance to help make sense of the styles, fashions and habits of their urban sisters living east of The Great Divide.
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