Let’s Glam Things Up!
When I was a young gal, just starting out in the world of adulthood. Everyone asked me what I wanted to do.
I knew I didn’t want to be a wife. Or a mother. Or a teacher. Or a nurse.
But that I wanted to be immersed in the world of business.
That was it.
There was no internet. No information highway. No information overload. Life was pretty much a suck it and see experience.
But from the time I was 13 years old, and became aware of how others lived, I only wanted to live my life in one way.
I wanted to lead a gorgeous life.
I’ve had as many hardships. And disappointments as the next person. But I always land on top because of my fixation on leading a gorgeous life.
Part of my gorgeous life is my home. I love it. And I actually LOVE looking after it.
I’m an early riser. Up at 4AM. Out the door at 6am – sunrise – for my walk on the property. When I take my morning photos.
Part of my morning ritual is to primp and preen my farmhouse. Preparing it to sparkle during the day.
And my handiest cleaning tool is my feather duster.
As you can see, my partner, Victor Pleshev, and I, live in a gallery. We are lifetime collectors. Between his art collection on the walls. My vintage glass collection occupying every surface available. Our antique clocks. Fob watches. Library. CD Collection. Et al. A feather duster is the only tool that gets in between the little crevices I leave unoccupied. To swipe away the daily dust that’s part of living in the bush. On a dirt road.
And I have a new one. Just purchased yesterday. From Bunnings Bathurst. It’s the ‘Tall Boy’ in the jug. Isn’t he just gorgeous?!
And I love it.
What’s your favourite tool to dust your home? ~Carol❤
I simply love the way an iron transforms a piece of wrinkled fabric into something glamourous. And luxurious.
We said no to paper napkins several years ago. And use only cloth napkins. Breakfast. Lunch. And dinner.
They absolutely add a touch of class to every meal.
These are newly pressed napkins. Ready to be put away in one of my linen drawers.
What do you think?
Too much trouble? Or simply sublime? ~Carol Jones, Ironing Diva❤
Photo courtesy of The Ironing Diva.
Follow me on Facebook. The Fitz Like A Glove™ Ironing Board Cover
Have you ever wanted to go shopping in Paris? With someone who knows their way around the local shops? And based on what you tell him you’re looking for. Will take you to the best shops that you would literally find – hard to find. And give you the buying experience of a lifetime.
Cedric is an engineer. Who wants to share with you his passion for timeless style and elegance. For you, he sets up a customized shopping tour that will allow you to visit the greatest Parisian craftsmen. Some of which are confidential addresses. He shares with you the essential principles on cuts, colours and shapes to highlight your purchases.
Could you ask for more?
Here’s what his clients have to say about his shopping trip with Cedric.
“Expect a knowledgeable, perfect host with Cedric. This was an amazing experience and Cedric was a great host in customizing the shopping experience to meet my needs and expectations. He was always willing to share his expertise and made moving between shops enjoyable.” Len Houston Texas
“intimidated to go inside? Cedric will take you to many quality local boutique stores around the city based on your needs. It’s a true bespoke experience. He is very knowledgeable on classical gentlemen styles. I was glad that he was able to guide me on my purchases. I ended up getting some socks, shoes, and a suit.” Lester Houston Texas
$131 per person. For a two hour shopping trip. Superb value!
Photo Courtesy Of Cedric M
Book A Shopping Trip With Cedric Here Cedric M on Airbnb Inc
Makers Of Handmade Cashmere Garments.
Everybody loves a good story. And this is a story with a difference.
Two childhood friends, Keyvan & Marlon, wanted to deliver superb quality cashmere sweaters at a more reasonable price.
Not the cheapest price. Because they are focussed on quality. But at a more reasonable price.
The traditional retail route for cashmere garments is this.
The makers own the factory. Pay for distribution. And sell through retail outlets.
This attracts a markup of 500%.
Pantera Biano Milano is developing a different route.
And have it spun into yarn. Using only the longest fibres.
In case you didn’t know it, long fibres produce maximum durability. And that unique softness that only comes with cashmere.
By experienced craftsmen and women with 30+ years experience.
And offer the finished garments direct to the public with a price tag of less than 50% markup.
They’ve started a campaign on Kickstarter. To help with funding. If cashmere is on your list of must have garments, you should visit their Kickstarter page. And make a contribution. They’re more than halfway towards their goal. ~Carol❤
All photos. And story. Is courtesy of Pantera Bianco Milano.
Antonio asks the question, “Should I fake it till I make it? Or should I just be myself? Or should I build myself into the man you know yourself to be.”
Let me introduce you to Antonio Centeno.
Antonio Centeno was a proud member the U.S. Marine Corps for five years, returned home after the Iraq War, and realized he had no marketable skills … he couldn’t even type. Today, he runs some of the most widely recognized men’s fashion sites on the web. He’s a sought-after speaker, a YouTube star, author, and the founder of his own national style conference.
I grew up in a dusty trailer park in West Texas and didn’t have much as a kid. I joined the Marines when I was a young man and became an officer. When I first put on the Marines uniform, I felt different. It changed the way I thought about myself. I had never experienced this feeling before. A Marine always looks sharp. It was amazing how my appearance changed my attitude and my confidence.
After I got out of the service, I wanted to get married to my girlfriend. When I was shopping for a suit to wear for my wedding, I tried on a $3,000 custom suit. Of course I couldn’t afford it, but I was like “Wow, this thing is amazing!” I saw the power of how a suit can make you feel. It was that same feeling of self-esteem and respect I had whenever I wore that Marines uniform.
Through these experiences, I began to make connections that made me realize appearance matters a lot.
And he’s been writing about men’s fashion ever since.
I’ve been following Antonio on Twitter for many years. I think you should, too! ~Carol❤
Background Information Courtesy Of Schaefer, Mark. KNOWN: The Handbook for Building and Unleashing Your Personal Brand in the Digital Age (p. 21). Kindle Edition.
Antonio’s Website: Real Men Real Style
Twitter: A Tailored Suit
YouTube Channel Real Men Real Style
What’s not to love about this ironing room found in the Ideal Home website?
Everything in this bright and airy ironing room is made to measure.
It’s a corridor that’s been converted into an ideal spot to iron.
I love, love, love the ironing board being stored underneath the marble counter when not in use.
Always up. But out of the way.
And what about those cherry red legs for contrast?
That quaint hanging rack with dowels is perfect for hanging ironed garments.
And the stool!
How many people sit down when they iron?
I do. And love it.
I turn the CD player on and listen to whatever I’m in the mood for. While I sit at a comfortable height for me. On a swivel office chair that I can raise or lower to suit. And iron in full comfort for however long it takes me.
Your environment is everything. A glamourous place to iron changes the focus from chore to someplace you want to be.
When your ironing board is in full view. In a room as lovely as this. You need to pay attention to your ironing board cover.
It should be wrinkle free. And fit your board like a tailored suit. ~Carol❤
Photo Courtesy Of Ideal Home
Ten years ago I inherited a beautiful set of Rodd Silverplate Cutlery from my partner’s mother, Margarita.
It’s a simple Beaded design. Not so plain as to be boring. But no tizz. It’s very classy!
Margarita no longer entertained and didn’t want it to sit unused in the bottom drawer of her credenza. She and Victor’s father purchased it in the late 1970’s. And it adorned her table at the many dinner parties she hosted until she became a widow in 1998.
For those of you who don’t know, Rodd Silverplate was made in Australia between 1919 and 1985. They were the leading makers of silverplate cutlery. And silver jewellery in the Land Of Oz. The quality of their workmanship makes it a sought after vintage purchase by many people today.
Thrilled at receiving it, I knew this would never sit unused in my farmhouse. Victor and I immediately put it to everyday use. It being a much more sophisticated alternative to the stainless steel we were used to.
I’m not one for polishing the silverware. I’m not Gold Meir, cleaning her silver teapots to unwind at the end of a traumatic day as the Prime Minister of Israel.
I’m a modern day gal looking for a simpler solution.
Which I have known about for many years. Having seen it demonstrated at the many shows we exhibited at when we were first getting established.
The ratio is this.
1 Tablespoon of baking soda (bicarbonate of soda)
1 Tablespoon of dish detergent
1 Cup of water
1 Aluminium tray. Or a sheet of aluminium foil. This is ABSOLUTELY essential. Without the foil/tray, your cleaning attempt is worthless.
Boiling water from the kettle.
Some recipes call for salt. Salt is corrosive and will destroy your silverplate over time.
I use the aluminium trays that are sold in every supermarket. Usually in the barbeque section. If you don’t have a foil tray, a sheet of Alfoil in a bowl is equally as good.
Pour the hot water into the foil tray. Or Alfoil lined bowl.
Add the detergent and the baking soda.
It will fizz.
Immediately immerse just a few pieces of cutlery at a time. Let is sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
And voila! Your silverplate looks like new.
If you’re using foil, you’ll have to throw it away and use a fresh sheet each time. The tray can be washed and reused many times.
A word of caution. If you don’t use the foil, your cutlery will turn black. Not permanently. Just repeat the process when you have a sheet of foil or a foil tray available.
With this super easy recipe for cleaning, there is no excuse to not use your superb quality silverplate cutlery on a daily basis.
Everything that adds glamour to the table. And to your life. Is so worth it! ~Carol❤
Recipe is courtesy of the internet. Everyone has this recipe. But they all include salt. Which is a no-no!
We have a guest cottage on our rural property which is called Meadow House Getaway. It’s a destination for anyone who needs to ‘Relax. Renew. Recover’. It was designed by my partner, Victor Pleshev, an architect, for his mother, Margarita.
She loved living in her home for 14 years.
We’ve left all her beautiful furniture. Her Stuart crystal. Her Wedgewood china. Her artifacts from her travels around the world. For our guests to enjoy.
The house is a glorious place to relax. It sits in a meadow of Eucalyptus Scribbly Gums on 54 hectares. Has panoramic views of the surrounding hills. And has an east facing veranda to enjoy the rising sun. And a west facing veranda to pull up a chair. Sip your favourite beverage. And watch the setting sun.
But what do guests seem to love the most?
There is something so luxurious about ironed sheets and pillowcases. Perhaps it’s because most people don’t do it for themselves.
Why? My guess is that it’s too much of a hassle for them. Because they have ironing board covers that slip and slide. Which creates havoc when moving large swathes of fabric over the board.
But Victor, who irons everything for Meadow House, finds it a breeze when ironing on a Fitz Like A Glove™ Ironing Board Cover!
A tip from a friend who owns a B&B. He mixes up a secret potion of Eucalyptus Oil and water. Puts it in a spray bottle. And once he puts his ironed bed linen in his linen cupboard, he mists it with a light spray of his scented water.
We don’t do that for Meadow House Getaway in case a guest is allergic to certain fragrances. But you can do that in your own linen cupboard. For that WOW! fragrance when you open the door. ~Carol❤
Photos Courtesy Of Meadow House Getaway.
We can all lead an elegant life. It’s not about money. It’s all about style. And a commitment to being a classy guy or gal.
I was born in New York City. My mother was a couture dressmaker. My father was a talented artist. The detail in his pencil sketches is stunning. Some of my dad’s work hangs today in my farmhouse in rural Australia.
My grandmother sang in the chorus of the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. My maternal grandfather was a barber. Who cut the hair of the Broadway stars. My paternal grandfather was a shoemaker. Who made the shoes for the Broadway stars.
My partner is a gifted architect.
My life has been surrounded by beauty and glamour since the day I was born. And I expect that to continue.
I’m also Second Hand Rose. Everything in my rural farmhouse has been someone else’s treasure in another life. I have a good eye. And have been collecting vintage items since I was 18 years old. My eclectic collection of furniture. Clocks. Glassware. Dinnerware. Beautiful cloth napkins. Accoutrements. Which is admired by every visitor. Has, in fact, cost me nothing more than a pittance.
I discovered The Butlers Guild many years ago. And refer to it frequently as a guide to how to create a stylish home. It’s a ‘How To’ on everything from cleaning to table settings.
Only cloth napkins. In sterling silver napkin rings. Yes. I iron all my napkins. There is nothing more luxurious than a crisply ironed napkin sitting in your lap.
No bottles of branded goods are ever on my table. Condiments are served in special glass dishes. Circa 1940’s. Beautiful flora from my rural garden dresses up a tall ceramic jug that dominates my table. Vintage accessories. Serving dishes. Glass jugs. Stemware. Silver coasters for glassware. Adorn my table. And that’s just breakfast, lunch and dinner Monday to Friday. Weekends are even more extra special.
Concerned about all the washing up? There are two dishwashers in our farmhouse. One is named Carol. The other is called Victor. Is it worth the extra effort? Absolutely.
It’s a known fact that your environment affects how you feel about yourself. So if you want to give your life a splash of elegance and class, visit The Butlers Guild. It truly is an inspirational website. It doesn’t take much to create a smart and stylish home. ~Carol❤
Visit the Butlers Guild here.
St Mary’s Cathedral Sydney is a Gothic, Roman Catholic Cathedral in the heart of Sydney. On St Marys Road. Surrounded by the hub-bub of city life.
The foundation stone for the original cathedral was laid in 1821. Which was destroyed by fire in 1865.
The foundation stone for the present cathedral was laid in 1868.
The cathedral wasn’t finished in its entirety until 2000.
Although not the largest cathedral in the world, it is the longest.
Mass is held 3 times a day Monday to Friday. Twice on Saturday. Five times on Sunday.
St Mary’s Cathedral Choir is acknowledged as the oldest musical ensemble in Australia still in operation. With a history dating from 1818, the Choir specialises in singing plainchant, Renaissance polyphony by composers such as Palestrina and Victoria, and sacred music by contemporary composers.
The Choir provides music at Vespers and Mass in the Cathedral every day except Fridays during term-time, making it one of only two Cathedral choirs in the world to continue such a rhythm of worship.
What’s not generally known about churches. Cathedrals. And their choirs. Is the number of volunteers who do the laundry. And do the ironing of all the vestments. And church linen.
Especially for a cathedral that holds mass 22 times a week.
This is a full time labour of love for the volunteers. Usually women.
I know. Because they are a part of my clientele for The Fitz Like A Glove™ Ironing Board Cover. ~Carol❤
Photo 1 of St Mary’s Cathedral Is Courtesy Of Ask Ideas
Photo 2 Of St Mary’s Cathedral Is The Northwest View. And Is Courtesy Of By M.O.X (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.
Photo 3 Of St Mary’s Cathedral Choir Is Courtesy Of Cathedral Choir Sydney Volunteer. The Choir survives on donations. You can make a donation here.
Text About The Choir Is Courtesy Of The St Mary’s Cathedral Choir
Did you know . . . that it only takes 13 seconds for someone to look you up and down? From head to toe? To make a judgement about you? Before you say a word? Based purely on how you dress? And how well groomed you are?
And just about everyone who looks at you in public for the first time, is unconsciously judging you.
If you always want to make a good first impression, be sure to be well pressed. And well dressed.
I honestly believe that dressing your best should be a daily habit. You feel better. And the public treats you differently to other people. In retail stores. In public transport. On the street. And when in need of the men and women in blue!
Your style should reflect impeccable taste. Etiquette. And Manners.
Yes. Manners! Dressing well for others is a sign of respect.
Look at these gals. Three different styles. Each one looks sensational! ~Carol❤
To me, there is nothing more luxurious than sitting at a table with crisply ironed table linen. With a crisply ironed, luxurious, pure linen napkin sitting in my lap. Surrounded by beautiful and glamourous accoutrements.
The origins of High Tea. Or Afternoon Tea. Was originally reserved purely for royalty and the aristocracy.
But times change.
Afternoon Tea is now enjoyed everyday around the world by millions, yet a setting as appropriate as Melbourne’s famous Hotel Windsor would be hard to find.
Indeed, walking into The Hotel Windsor’s tearoom for afternoon tea is much like being transported into the scene of a Jane Austen novel, featuring traditional 19th-century décor complete with chandeliers, linen table cloths, Noritake fine bone china and silverware to match.
The Hotel Windsor has been serving afternoon tea since 1883, and to this day holds a sterling reputation for what is arguably Melbourne’s best traditional afternoon tea offering.
As you can imagine, this is a rather big claim to make, but the beautiful setting, impeccable service and on-point menu epitomises an impressive attention to detail. ~Carol❤
Images Courtesy Of The Hotel Windsor, Melbourne.
Text courtesy of The High Tea Society.
How classy. And classic. Is this handmade suit jacket?!
Miles Wharton and Rami Mikhael’s travelling tailor service, The Bespoke Corner, is quietly garnering quite the following in Sydney. With a showroom in Paddington NSW, the tailor specialises in made to measure garments, which are hand made in Italy using only the finest fabrics.
It’s a true made to measure service where a unique pattern is cut for every customer based on their measurements.
How much? A wool two-piece suit: $1400 – upwards
Where is it made? Every suit is made in Tuscany Italy and comes with the government stamp of approval.
Want to glam up your wardrobe, gentlemen? This is the tailor to head for! ~Carol❤
Address: 1/55 Regent St, Paddington NSW.
Photo Courtesy of GQ Australia
Crush your ironing frustrations. Never again fight with a cover that slips and slides on your board.
You can read all about it here.