Why I TILT – and why you should too …

Why I “TiLT” … and why you should too!

MumptyStyle TiLT folder
My “TiLT” folder!

So about now you may be wondering “what the hell’s a TiLT, and why should I do it?”

“TiLT” is an acronym for Things I Love Thursday, and is an internet phenomenon started by the magical Gala Darling in 2007.  I first heard about it on Gala’s site way back in 2008 and I give her all the credit for inspiring me to follow her lead – thank you ever so Gala!

Essentially a TiLT is a weekly gratitude list and I reckon it’s one of the most valuable and positive habits in my “happiness arsenal.”  I have TiLT-ed every week, without exception, since September 2008 – so that’s six years, which is a lot of TiLTs!

How do you do a TiLT? 
A TiLT is an intensely personal thing and there’s no right or wrong way to do it – in a way, it’s a kind of diary or journal – well, that’s the way it works for me anyway.  Although I’ve said it’s a really personal thing, many people share their TiLT with friends or other groups – gratitude begets gratitude they say!  I share mine with my Mum, my sisters and a good friend – Gala shares hers with everybody!  It depends on your level of comfort with the people you share it with, and of course if you want to “censor” it, you don’t have to include EVERYTHING you’re grateful for!

The way I do my TiLT is that I create a Word file every week and I update it with little things throughout the week.  I include photos, quotes, images from the internet; anything I’ve loved that week obviously.  And it doesn’t have to be big things either … my entries typically range from stuff like “the rainbow on the way to work” to “my daughter won Player of the Day” or “squeeeee … a new pair of shoes!”

Each week, on a Friday (because that allows me to capture everything that week, all the way up to Thursday night!) I finish off my TiLT, print it off and then send it to my “TiLT Group.”  I keep all my TiLTs both on my computer and printed out in my TiLT folder, which is pictured above.  Because I’m a geek, I also do a Year in Review; which is essentially a “best of TiLT” each month!

MumptyStyle TILT page
A typical TiLT page!

A TiLT can be long or short; mine is generally a double-sided A4 page, but as I said, I include lots of pics, so they take up space!  My TiLTs always include lots of quotes, shoes, dresses and pictures of Marilyn Monroe and Dita Von Teese ‘cos I’m shallow like that!  They also contain personal and “big stuff” as well ‘cos I’m not totally shallow!  TiLTs are actually really fun to look back on too – I can see all the trends and obsessions in my life and the stages I’ve been through.  It’s also come in handy a few times when I’ve wanted to find out when something happened … if it was important or special to me, it will be in my TiLT somewhere! MumptyStyle TILT Page
A TiLT or a gratitude list, in my experience, is a powerful thing. Even the physical act of typing things into a document makes you stop and think about the positive things in your life -be they big or small, they all contribute to a feeling of well-being and happiness.  Well that’s what I find anyway!  And without wanting to sound “airy fairy” I sometimes think you need to be careful what you type into your TiLT because it often comes true – it’s the old adage “be careful what you wish for!”  So many times I’ve put something in my TiLT and within a couple of weeks the opportunity to purchase that item, or have that experience, or whatever it was, appears.  I’m not always in a position to take up that opportunity, but I’m always amazed at how it seems to work.

So why should YOU do a TiLT?
Well why not?  No harm can come from acknowledging the things that are good in your life! Even if you don’t take the time to document it like I do, or even to write it down, the simple act of recognising the good stuff in your world can help combat the bad stuff when it comes along.  And at the very least … it’s a good way to start or finish your day!

Love …





Extra for experts: 
1) Search the internet for Things I Love Thursday’s – thousands of bloggers do them and they’re really interesting to read!
2) To read Gala Darling’s TiLTs visit her site here and click the TILT category on the right-hand side.
3) You may (or may not!) be wondering why I always put a small “i” in my TiLT.  The answer is … I don’t know!  I always have – I’m pretty sure Gala used to way back when, but I can’t be sure!  So yep – it’s a quirk of my TiLT!

Backstage at a burlesque show …

Backstage at a burlesque show …

MumptyStyle Bombshells and Cocktails lineup
Photo courtesy of David Rowe Photography. L-R: Miss L Eganza; Pixie Twist; Azure D’Murre; Amorous Ava; Ms Tittle Tattle; Miss Ooh La La Paree; Cherry Boomb and Miss Bonita Danger Doll.

Have you ever attended a burlesque show?  All the ticks for you if you have – you’ll no doubt have loved the glamour, the glitter, the sparkles and the full-on “sass” that goes into a burlesque revue.

Burlesque performers are showgirls in the extreme; they put their heart and soul (and a large portion of their wallets too!) into their performances and onstage they are glittering, sexy, sensational starlets.  But have you ever wondered what goes on backstage?  You have?  Great … ‘cos I just happen to know and with the approval of some of my gorgeous showgirl friends, I’m sharing their secrets with you – well, some of them anyway!   BEWARE … kinda long, picture-heavy post ahead … enjoy!

MumptyStyle Miss Ruby Spice
Miss Ruby Spice, who just happens to love lounging around on pool tables, covered in Hershey’s Kisses!

My burlesque roles tend to swing between stage kittying – which essentially involves the placement of props and the collection of items of clothing that have been discarded during a routine, and stage managing – which involves a lot of organising, running around, making sure performers are backstage on time for their routine, ensuring performers are happy; soothing nerves, assisting with costumes and and just generally ensuring everything runs smoothly for showtime.  Sometimes it’s necessary to do both stage kittying and stage managing, and when that happens, I’m a very busy girl indeed!

Recently I was stage manager for the Bombshells & Cocktails Burlesque Revue; Glamilton’s annual burlesque show produced by Michelle at Bombshell Burlesque; starring the incredible Miss Bonita Danger Doll and featuring many of my fabulous Glamilton friends and other sensational performers from around New Zealand.  I had a brilliant assistant too – big thanks to Amy Lever!

MumptyStyleBombshells & Cocktails
The show poster … featuring the gorgeous Miss Bonita Danger Doll.

Performers normally arrive around two and a half to three hours before the show starts as there’s a LOT of preparation that goes into hair, makeup, costuming, props etc – that level of glamour does not just happen!  Performers are pretty adept at getting the look they want in the shortest possible time though, but even so … it’s a process!

Hair is generally done or at least in progress when the girls arrive – it’s often in rollers or pincurls and littered around the room will be curling irons, straighteners, hair dryers, hair spray, rollers, setting spray, hair flowers, ornate headdresses and fascinators – the works!  Makeup is normally done after the girls have settled in and they don’t arrive in costume either, but more about that later.

Normally performers will want to have a look backstage and at the performance area so they can check out “the lay of the land”; where the lights will be (so they can avoid “dead areas” of the stage); how much room they have to dance in; if there are obstacles to avoid; if their props will fit etc – they often have to adjust their routines accordingly.  Sometimes they’ll be performing on a massive stage and other times they’ll be performing at audience-level in a tiny corner of a bar – venues often don’t make things easy for performers, so they are necessarily very adaptable!

MumptyStyle Pixie Twist_Bar
Miss Pixie Twist lets her hair down while practicing her routine; a routine which started on the bar …

Obviously, makeup is a BIGGIE for a burlesque performer and the “less is more” maxim simply DOES NOT apply!  Essentially, in order to be visible, look effective and be fabulous on stage everything has to be big, dramatic and sparkly, so hair too is generally pretty OTT!  Lots of attention is paid to the eyes and it’s not uncommon to see very bright colours, accented with glitter and highlighted with the crazy-biggest eyelashes you ever did see!  Lips generally get the glitter treatment too.  Performers mostly do their own hair and makeup, although if they’re lucky, there might be an H&MUA backstage who can help out and that is a real luxury for them!

MumptyStyle Cherry Makeup
Miss Cherry Boomb demonstrates the subtle hair and makeup that is typical of a burlesque performer! Isn’t she fabulous!

Actually, I’m often totally blown away by the transformation between the girl that arrives at the venue and the showgirl that eventually saunters onto the stage.  It’s not that the original girl is plain in any way, it’s just that her “stage version” can only be described as TO THE MAX!

MumptyStyle Dave_Michelle
Dave, the show’s MC, and our producer, Ms Tittle Tattle chat backstage before she goes on. Ms Tittle Tattle demonstrates the power of the OTT do and EXTREME lashes. Not to mention a gorgeous feather boa – just perfect darling!

You know how I said earlier that a performer puts her all into an act … including her wallet?  Well it’s true – although performers are paid for their performances, it’s not nearly enough to cover their costuming and props, let alone their time for choreographing, practicing, travelling or anything else!  Being a showgirl – in NZ at least – is definitely done for love and not money.

MumptyStyle Michelle_Bonita
The truly gorgeous Miss Bonita Danger Doll and our equally gorgeous Ms Tittle Tattle – check out the bling and lashing on those ladies!

A burlesque revue, backstage, is an absolute riot of colour, glitter, feathers, lycra, rhinestones, gloves, heels, wings, masks – you name it, it will likely be there!  Performers often require  assistance getting into their outfits – these outfits, as you’d expect, have multiple layers and each layer is removed on the way to the “big reveal.” Their costumes are never just standard either; that long, slinky dress will often have a special attachment added to the zipper pull so she can just reach behind and unzip it easily; that rhinestone-encrusted chiffon panel skirt may be secured with velcro so she can dramatically rip it off and fling it to the audience!

MumptyStyle Cherry Boomb
Miss Cherry Boomb warms up in the green room before she takes the stage for her first act.

There is also a fabulous amount of “bedazzling” that goes on with costuming … rhinestones are added; fringing is added; in fact any and every form of embellishment can and will be added!  Performers literally spend HOURS gluing embellishments on to their costumes and props … it’s part of the deal.  In fact, Bonita Danger Doll told me she has a martini glass for one of her routines and – get this – she has glued 19,000 rhinestones to it BY HAND!  Now that, my friends, is dedication!

MumptyStyle Bonita Danger Doll
Miss Bonita Danger Doll … this is just one of her many stupendous costumes. Look at those pearls … not to mention the numerous rhinestoned layers and those ostrich feather fans – to die for! And just visible at the bottom of the picture – SPECTACULAR fully rhinestoned heels!
MumptyStyle Bonita Danger Doll
Back view … aren’t the pearls and feathers just gorgeous!

Nerves … these too are a big part of a performer’s life.  Surprised?  I know – me too!

Honestly though, I have worked with quite a few performers now and almost all of them get nervous before they go on.  In fact, it’s part of the stage manager’s job to work out how best to support a nervous performer; some of them just like to be left alone so they can go through their music in their heads and settle themselves; some like to be distracted and others just like to talk quietly before they go on.  Sometimes you can almost see their heart pounding as they wait to take the stage, but once they’re on, you’d never know it – you would swear that’s where they were born to be!

Just an aside … a performer needs feedback!  It is SOOOO hard performing for a quiet and non-responsive audience.  So scream, yell, whistle, whoop and encourage them in any way you can (without calling out anything crass of course); performers will play up to it and you’ll get an even better routine!  

Before a performer goes onstage we normally encourage them to “pop a pastie” which is the burlesque version of “break a leg” – of course popping a pastie is not ideal, but it does happen!

So if you’ve never been to a burlesque revue before – get yourself along to one!  And while you’re there … take a moment to appreciate the dedication these girls show to their craft – it’s their passion and they put their all into it.

Sorry for the not-great quality of the pictures in this post – they were all taken on my iPhone backstage.   Our show photographer, the talented David Rowe from David Rowe Photography took the professional shots – check them out here!

Love …



MumptyLoves 26/09/2014

These are the things Mumpty loves this week – 26/09/2014

♥ Serge Lutens un Boise Vanille fragrance

MumptyStyle Serge Lutens

This is one of the bestest fragrances I’ve ever tried.  Sadly I’ve only got a little tester of it – did you know you could buy small versions of most fragrances on Trademe? It’s a good way to check things out before making the commitment to a full bottle!  Anyway this one is such a goodie that I think a full-sized bottle might very well be on my birthday/Christmas list this year.  I’m an absolute sucker for vanilla-based fragrances so my little heart sank when my discontinued MAC MV2 finally puffed it’s last puff.  But having this fabulous fragrance as my new alternative makes me feel so much better!

♥ Sebastian Potion 9

MumptyStyle Potion 9

You know how last week I included the Sebastian Zero Gravity hairspray?  Well this was the other part of my little competition win via Makeup Obsessives.  It’s a styling treatment and I whack it in my hair before I blowdry it and it imparts a bit of added texture and hold – and that’s never a bad thing, right?!  Smells really nice too.

♥ Emerald-cut diamond rings 

MumptyStyle Emerald Cut Diamond

ADORE.  There’s something magical about the emerald-cut diamond that I’ve always loved, and yet they’re still relatively uncommon as engagement rings go.  Whilst you may have to forgo a little of the sparkle you get from brilliant cut diamonds, the emerald cut offers beautiful clean, elegant lines that make up for the reduced sparkle a million times over in my opinion.  Set it in platinum and you’ve got a Bobby Dazzler for life I reckon!

♥ Benefit The Porefessional Agent Zero Shine powder 

Benefit Porefessional MumptyStyle

This is a lovely, light pale-peach-tinted loose powder that well and truly lives up to it’s name; Agent Zero Shine.  Honestly, I shake about three shakes worth (yep, that’s a technical, industry term!) into the lid and that absolutely, totally (!) keeps the shine away all day.  It’s probably wise at this juncture to mention that I don’t really have oily skin though.  It’s a really sheer cover; it glides on easily and allows your skin to be all glowy but not shiny.  I’m always attracted to Benefit’s packaging too – as you can see from the picture above, it comes in a nifty retro-styled cylinder-thing (another industry term) and you screw the lid off; tap the product into the lid and then push the brush up and use it to apply the powder to your face.  In trawling the internet reviews, some people have found this particular delivery/application mechanism annoying, but I think it’s cute, it works well for me, so I’m not complaining!

♥ www.zotheysay.com

ZoeTheySay MumptyStyle
ZoTheySay’s blog is Fab with a capital F!  Zoe (Foster-Blake) herself is a highly-regarded, Australian beauty editor who has worked for Harpers BAZAAR and Cosmopolitan; she has also written several books and launched her own skincare line, Go-To.  Her original blog (FruityBeauty.com) was wildly popular, but Zoe recently had a baby and as a result, her world has changed dramatically.  So she decided to broaden her focus to ensure she could write about whatever.the.hell.she.liked rather than being just beauty-focused.  Anyway, Zoe is a brilliant, quirky writer and a very funny lady with LOTS of knowledge and excellent suggestions.  Not afraid to write about the embarrassing stuff (in fact she appears to relish it!) one of her most poular posts EVER was this one about how to kill a coldsore fast.   Check her out at www.zotheysay.com and … you’re welcome!

♥ My Betsey Johnson golden teardrops necklace

MumptyStyle Betsey Johnson necklace

This necklace is The Jazz!  This is another necklace that I scored off Trademe for the princely sum of $15 – bargain huh!  It adds a touch of glam to any outfit and feels so nice against your skin.  I.Love.Betsey.Johnson  Won’t you just look at her … what a fabulous, glamorous, OTT little PocketRocket/Diva she is!  

Betsey Johnson MumptyStyle

And lastly …

Good God … gold, sparkly AND Louboutin.  I hate the word “shoegasm” really, but if there ever was a pair that might inspire such a thing; it would surely be these!

MumptyStyle Gold Louboutin

The Pigalle by Christian Louboutin in gold/glitter finish – le sigh.

What are your favourite things this week?

Enjoy …




Inspirational women – Kirsty Leigh

Five quick-fire questions with inspirational women … Kirsty Leigh

A few weeks back I was thinking about my friends, the women I’ve met and and some of the other fabulous women you see and read about in the media.  It struck me then how inspirational many of them have been to me in one way or another, and so I decided to do a little series on my blog, acknowledging some of these gorgeous women.

MumptyStyle Kirsty Leigh

When thinking about the questions I wanted to ask, I decided I needed to put a couple of rules in place – only so as to ensure I got diverse answers!  You’ll see what I mean when you see the rules.

The rules:
1) You can’t choose your children as your greatest achievement – even though they are!
2) You can’t choose your Mum or Dad as your most inspirational person, even though they may well be! 

So … I am very honoured to introduce the second fabulous woman in my series of inspirational women, the gorgeous and cheeky Kirsty Leigh.

MumptyStyle Kirsty Leigh

Kirsty, affectionately known as Kirk,  is the stunning founder of Makeup Obsessives; a 29,000 strong (and growing daily) group of makeup lovers.  The Facebook group is complemented by the Makeup Obsessives website and blog, which won Beauty Review’s Best Beauty Blog in 2013.  While Kirsty necessarily has a team of admins to help her oversee the group (of which I am very proud to say, I am one!) Makeup Obsessives is still very much her baby; she writes all the fabulous articles and reviews and is largely responsible for the positive culture for which Makeup Obsessives is known.

MumptyStyle Kirsty

Q1.  In 10 words or less, what are you most proud of?
A. Creating a “ahurutanga” – a safe environment where nobody feels judged. 

Q2.  Can you give me two habits that make you successful at what you do?
A. I guess I’m fairly tenacious … if I want something, I’m pretty determined to get it.  Like a dog with a bone, really.  Awful simile, but apt.  I also genuinely love humans – as a rule.  I love being in touch with and meeting new people every day, and I’m not shy.  If I was meeting Beyonce, mind you, I would be a mess. 

Q3. What do you do for yourself that helps keep you going?
A. I rely on my friends!  They are SO good to me, and keep me grounded.  None of them are scared to tell me when I’m being a dick, and I both appreciate and need that. 

Q4.  What’s the first name that pops into your head when I ask who inspires you?
A. Barnaby Jack!

Q5. Why?
A. This article here says it all, but in my own words: Barnes was one of the first friends I made in Auckland, and I was always in awe of him.  Not only was he a total super star at what he did, but he was the coolest, nicest, most humble person ever.  He’s an inspiration to many, and missed by all. xxx

Why I find Kirsty so inspiring …
Kirsty is funny, clever, irreverant and savvy.  She also unknowingly gave me the boot I needed to start my own blog when she asked for contributing writers for her website.  I jumped at the opportunity and enjoyed it so much I decided to finally get off my butt (!) and give my own blog a go (albeit on a different topic to Makeup Obsessives of course!)  There are many, many more reasons to admire Kirsty and what she’s achieved with Makeup Obsessives so far  (**cough – one of the winners of the Westpac Millennial Women of Influence competition – cough**) – I’m so proud to be a small part of her team.

Thanks so much for your answers Kirsty – I love the concept of ahurutanga – it’s perfect for Makeup Obsessives.

Follow Kirsty on Twitter … http://www.twitter.com @Kirsty_MUO
Schmooze with Kirsty on Instagram … http://www.instagram.com/makeupobsessives
Read her website/blog … http://www.makeupobsessives.com
Join her Facebook group … www.facebook.com/MakeupObsessives

Enjoy …


Personal styling session

Should you have a personal styling session?

Yes, you should!
MumptyStyle Leap

A couple of years ago I was sent a birthday e-mail from Annah Stretton inviting me to attend a free personal styling session with one of their stylists.  Initially I thought the idea was simply a sales pitch, however whilst I acknowledge there is certainly a financial incentive for Annah Stretton to offer this service, I don’t believe you should discount it on that basis.  (Just as an aside, I want to be clear here that I am in no way affiliated with Annah Stretton; I just love her stuff and wear it a lot.)  They were also offering a free goodie bag, and as I am a cheapie, that was a draw-card for me as well!

Essentially, my personal stylist Sabine, stood me in front of the mirror and with her “magic pearls” measured my proportions and discussed my body shape with me.  The body shapes run along the same principle as Trinny & Susannah use, but Annah Stretton uses flowers instead – because really, who wants to be described as a “brick”?  My body shape under the “Annah Stretton shape system” is the Bluebell, which means my bust and hips are in proportion and I have a definite waist (which comes and goes sometimes *wink*)  – it is also known as the classic “hourglass” shape.  Anyway, my shape is not the point of all this.  It’s what happened next that was the clincher for me!

Sabine and I discussed my lifestyle; what I already had in my wardrobe; what I wanted; what I liked; what I considered my “assets”; what she considered my “assets!”; the colours I liked and that kind of thing.  She then headed off into the shop and came back with a selection of six dresses and a couple of tops and handed them over!  I looked at her in disbelief … honestly, if I’d wandered around the shop myself, I wouldn’t have picked any of them!  They were a riot of colours and patterns, and like many Kiwi women, back then I tended to stick to black or plain.  They were also not styles I would have ever picked for myself.  At that point I was thinking “oh well, nothing ventured, nothing gained – at least I’ll get the goodie bag!”

However, I dutifully tried the first one on and was pleasantly surprised.  I stepped outside the dressing room and Sabine attacked!  She adjusted things, wiggled things around, pulled sleeves up, added a belt, added a brooch and all of a sudden that dress that looked OK, suddenly looked bloody awesome!  With Sabine’s expert assistance, I excitedly tried the rest of the pile on, and honestly – out of the six dresses I never would have chosen for myself – had I been able to afford it, I would have bought five of them!  Sabine told me later she had “planted” a dress in there that was NOT designed for my body shape, just to illustrate a point so full points to me for finding it!  I ended up purchasing two of the dresses and the black elastic rose belt (which I thrash!) and I love them all.

**Spoiler alert – conceited observation incoming!**

MumptyStyle Annah Stretton at Louis Vuitton
My Annah Stretton “Laurestine” dress … at one of my favourite places EVER – the private salon at Louis Vuitton!

I have worn this dress (the “Laurestine”) ^^up there^^ A LOT as it makes me feel happy every time I put it on.  And not a word of a lie, EVERY.SINGLE.TIME I wear it, a complete stranger stops me and tells me they love my dress!  It is totally worth it’s weight in gold.

So in answer to the question in the title of this post “Should you have a personal styling session?” Yes, you really, really should.

An outsider, particularly one who is an expert in dressing other women, can give you a whole new perspective on what you can wear and open up an exciting new world of style, colours and patterns.

MumptyStyle Annah Stretton rose belt
The Annah Stretton rose belt – you NEED one (or more!) of these!

Personal styling sessions seem to be the marketing “technique du jour” and I for one, think it’s a great thing.  Of course you don’t have to go to Annah Stretton – I’ve noticed lately that Westfield are doing 15 minute personal styling sessions and have also started what they call summer shopping tours; which sound like a fabulous idea; a group of 15 or so women are guided around the mall’s fashion stores by a personal stylist who discusses current trends, the 12 key staple items in the ideal wardrobe, how to mix and match outfits etc.  Awesome!  If you’re not in New Zealand I’m sure the rest of the world are doing it too!  Keep an eye out in your local papers, and on Facebook and other social media.

Enjoy defining and refining your own particular version of “MumptyStyle!”

Love …


Classics Museum calendar launch party

The 2015 Classics Museum Pinup Calendar launch party …

Following this post, although somewhat (OK, massively!) belatedly, I thought I’d give you a little rundown on how much fun the calendar launch party was!

MumptyStyle Launch Party invite
The invite.

There was a pretty big build-up to the night to be honest; we’d had the shoot waaaaay back in April and although we’d seen “teasers” of our individual images, none of us had actually seen the final edit, so I for one, was neeerrrrvvvvouuusss!

On the afternoon of the launch party, I did my hair; put on my frock and did my makeup – complete with the requisite winged eyeliner and red lippy, and headed off to the Classics Museum where the launch was being held.

MumptyStyle calendars
The Classics Museum 2015 Pinup Calendar

I met a friend there and we pottered around upstairs for a while before heading down to the diner to be greeted with our individual pictures on A3 posters!!!  Mine was a bit of a shock actually, as it wasn’t the image we’d all agreed on, but after the initial shock wore off, I really like my image (thank goodness!)

MumptyStyle my calendar pic
The A3 mounted version of my calendar pic – Miss March.

Here is my gorgeous friend Monique (who incidentally, was the  cover girl) and her stunning June Carter-inspired pic.  Isn’t she a babe?!

Cover girl: Monique Sweet – photo by Tony at Handcrafted Stories.

There was food and drinks and speeches and fabulous entertainment provided by Monique’s boyfriend Sam, of The Southern Diplomats.  There was also lots of wonderful swing dancing going on … oh, how I wish I could dance like that!

Sam Calendar launch
Sam, who normally plays with The Southern Diplomats, provided the entertainment for the evening, and what an excellent job he did!

At this point in my little rundown, I’d like to mention the talented and beautiful Tiffany Curtis, who was the brains and the photographer behind this second edition of the Classics Museum Pinup Calendar.  I was amazed at what she created from the raw photographs she took; not that they were bad in any way, but the editing process turned out some absolutely gorgeous images and Tiffany should be so proud of herself – well done Tiffany.

Tiffany Curtis
For someone who is used to being behind the camera, Tiffany makes a pretty good model don’t you think?!

After the formalities and the speeches and the dancing (!) the “calendar girls” snuck off into the museum itself and had some group shots taken by Tony of Handcrafted Stories, which was heaps of fun … I especially love this one below where we are all just being damm silly!

MumptyStyle "calendar girls" group shot
“Calendar girls” group shot by Tony at Handcrafted Stories.

So all in all, it was a fabulous evening and I’m so proud to have been a part of the calendar.  Like every woman, I look at the photo and see things I don’t like about myself, but I figure that in ten years time I’m going to look back at it with much more appreciative eyes!

Love …


That frock

That frock …

That frock … oh, that frock!

Truly deserving of a post all of her own, she is reverently referred to by me as “The Ava” and she makes my little heart flutter!

MumptyStyle The Ava

Sadly, The Ava doesn’t even belong to me – if she did, she’d hold prime position in my wardrobe – in fact, I’d probably purchase a mannequin and display her in my bedroom.  The Ava is in fact, a “hire frock” at the Hamilton Operatic Society’s garment hire facility.  As such, she spends the majority of her life squeezed into the rack of frocks under the “50’s category.”  Funnily enough however, The Ava is not even a vintage 50’s frock, she’s an 80’s reproduction of a vintage 50’s frock; but that doesn’t make me love her any the less!

Having been around for over 30 years, and being the style she is, I like to believe The Ava has enjoyed quite a fancy and refined lifestyle.  I’ve worn her on two occasions – once for a photo shoot at Pukemiro and secondly for a calendar shoot – each time she made me feel like a princess.  The funny thing about The Ava is that she’s really not even that flattering on me; her ruching doesn’t flatter my waist, and her cut doesn’t flatter my bust.  But it doesn’t seem to matter – I still love everything about her.

Miss March - Classics Car Musuem

If asked to explain what it is about The Ava I love so much, I think I’d have to say her allure lies in the combination of her fabric (a gorgeous black chiffon-like material with a large silvery-white check running through it) and the fullness of her skirt, which is where the princess feeling comes in.

I think too, that the magic intrinsic in The Ava for me, can also be attributed to the fact that each time I’ve worn her, it’s been for an exciting occasion.  The photo shoot at Pukemiro was the first one I ever did; I was petrified, and it was one of the most awesome days I’ve had in a long time!  The second time was for a Pinup Calendar (see Miss March above) and that too, was a fabulous day spent with some awesome and creative women.

Another photo at Pukemiro – this time by Spark Photography!

So if you’re ever at the Hamilton Operatic Society, pop over to the 50’s category and admire her … and if you do get an opportunity to bedeck yourself in The Ava, please be careful – she’s my favourite 50/80’s girl!

MumptyStyle The Ava
Photo by Tiffany Curtis Photography – this is a cropped version of the original, but approved by Tiffany!

Love …


MumptyLoves 19/09/2014

These are the things Mumpty loves this week – 19/09/2014

♥ Sebastian Super Zero Gravity hairspray

MumptyStyle Sebastian

I won this fantastic hairspray in a competition via Makeup Obsessives … thanks Kirsty (this was long before I was appointed an admin by the way – there’s no silly favouritism at MUO!)  I’ve used it quite a few times now and though it’s billed as a lightweight, flexible hold I found it held my hair pretty well throughout the day (mine is very fine though, so that probably helped.)  As it’s name suggests, it is a light-weight spray so it doesn’t give that horrible “crunchy” feel to your hair and it brushes out really easily.  I don’t think it smells great though, which is a shame ‘cos I’m a sucker for fabulous-smelling hairsprays, but overall it is quite superior to my supermarket Tresemmé stuff!  Maybe an 8 out of 10?  Yes, that seems fair.

♥ Annah Stretton rose stretch belt

MumptyStyle Annah Stretton rose belt

I don’t know where I’d be without my Annah Stretton rose belts; I wear the black one probably three times a week AT LEAST; often more!  I also have it in a gorgeous soft gold/ivory, but that doesn’t get nearly as many outings as the black one.  These belts accent the waist, which is important for any pinup style; are made of stretchy elastic, so they always fit well and are comfortable, and lastly, they’re dressy, but not too dressy, making them extremely versatile.  Plus obviously, they’re soooo pretty!  I’m  currently coveting the teal, hot pink and red versions – you  should be too if you know what’s good for your wardrobe!  Which reminds me … Nina and/or Sabine at Annah Stretton are ACE if you need any help with styling or fitting suggestions.

♥ Benefit Fakeup concealer MumptyStyle Benefit FakeupA couple of weeks ago I reviewed the Natio Dark Circle Corrector and I loved it to death; but I still think that Benefit’s good old “Fakeup” will retain it’s spot in my makeup collection.  As you can see in the pic above, it has a concealing “core” which is surrounded by a kind of hydrating creamy/silky stuff; the creamy/silky stuff makes it feel just that wee bit lighter and more hydrating than the Natio one.  It’s also easier to blend and a bit more controllable; I find the Natio one can be a bit tricky to blend if you mistakenly squeeze too hard on the tube and then apply too much!  In saying that, I think the Natio one would get the payrise over and above Fakeup if it came to a performance appraisal after a hard night out!  (Full review to come soon by the way.)

♥ Bayley, the dog & Daisy, the lamb!   MumptyStyle Bayley and DaisyThese two are hilarious!  I don’t know if Bayley thinks he’s a lamb, or Daisy thinks she’s a dog, but either way, they’re besties!  They run around together outside for hours and then when they’ve tired themselves out, they plop down and snuggle up for a rest!  Too cute.

♥ Rimmel Scandal Eyes Rockin’ Curves mascara

MumptyStyle Rimmel mascara

For the price, I reckon this mascara is a goodie!  (I got it from Farmers and it was less than $20.)  The curvy wand thing allows you to easily get the product to those gorgeous long hairs at the outer edges of your eyes, meaning you can really play them up.  I’ve found a couple of layers is great; three tops – any more than that it just gets a bit spidery and you end up looking like a Younique rep!

♥ Louboutin-styled manicures 

MumptyStyle Louboutin manicure
Image via askmissa.com

I know they’re old news, but I think they’re just cool.  And if Adele can rock it, then why not me?  Well, actually I can’t, because I have shite nails unfortunately – I would if I could but I can’t!  Oooooh and that reminds me … Louboutin has released a fabulous line of nail varnishes in the coolest packaging.  WANT!

MumptyStyle Louboutin Nail Polish

And because two pairs of much-coveted Louboutins have appeared on my “Mumpty Loves” roundup now, I’ve decided to make Louboutin a regular feature for the time being, so this week’s pair is … MumptyStyle Louboutin RosellaThe Rosella ballet flat in gray flannel with black grosgrain (starring my feet!)  Yes, these are mine – I adore them and I got them super-cheap from a friend (the shoes, not the feet!) – but OMG they are uncomfortable!  Who makes an uncomfortable ballet flat (is that even possible?)!

And this week’s “Mumpty Loves” is bought to you by Christian Louboutin! (God I wish!!)  What are your favourite things this week?

Enjoy …


Doing, wanting, reading, loving …

Doing, wanting, reading, eating, loving …

A little round-up of what’s up!
MumtpyStyle Minnie&Micky
Today I thought I’d do a little round-up of what’s up in Mumpty’s thoughts/life … if only so I can look back at in six month’s time and see what’s changed!  So, here goes:

Doing: ♥ lots of blogging and writing after hours helping our daughter train her lamb Daisy for Ag Day;   admin-ing on Makeup Obsessives practicing my winged eyeliner technique; Dukan’in it! making lists; smiling, laughing and just having fun!

Wanting: ♥ all.the.things! a frightening number of dresses and cardigans from Pinup Girl Clothing; new Estee Lauder Double Wear foundation; my Revitalash to arrive; MAC Velvet Teddy lipstick;  Lime Crime Velvetine in Red Velvet something in the Damier range by Louis Vuitton; my blog to get LOTS more followers!; a Range Rover Evoque;  Christian Louboutin shoes  … I know, I know … it’s the little things!  OK, I am going to stop right now! 

Reading: I just finished “Screw You Dolores” by our very own Sarah-Kate Lynch; I just re-read “Burlesque/Fetish and the Art of the Tease” by the spectacular Dita von Teese;  and I am currently reading “The Shoe Queen – a tale of forbidden love and must-have shoes” by Anna Davis.

Eating: Cold roast chicken; Coke Zero; poached eggs on spinach (yes, I am on Dukan!); I am very much looking forward to a “cheat meal” of Thai food that is being cooked for me on Friday night for our staff get-together!

Loving: pretty much everything mentioned in “doing” above but especially writing – I’m really enjoying that; rainbows; sunsets; it nearly being Daylight Savings;  fond memories of people I loved who have passed; our dog Bayley; our daughter being all grown up and getting herself on the bus to school and back every day; fabulous interviews with amazing woman; inspirational quotes; entering competitions  clever, savvy friends; a supportive partner; endless possibilities!

Sending all the love to:  Caroline at Beautiful Life with Cancer; and Jennifer from My name is Jennifer and I have breast cancer – I don’t personally know either of these women, but they are both living with cancer in the most spirited and purposeful manner – I can’t even comprehend what they are each going through, but my heart goes out to them both.

Proud of:  our daughter is doing a solo in the school production; my friend Kirsty Leigh from Makeup Obsessives got through to the finals for Westpac’s Millennial Women of Influence competition (you can vote for her here if you’d like!)

Obsessed with: Tudor history and related Tudor historical fiction (yes, Philippa Gregory is my idol!)

Grateful for: my family; my friends; my job; our health success and happiness – for everyone; plus all of the above!

Love …


A view to scheme by …

A view to scheme by …

(A fictional story, inspired by the picture below.)

MumptyStyle ParisHenri, 1pm …

Henri climbed the lichen-clad, rough-hewn steps to the small stone building on the top of the hill and gazed through the heart-shaped window that looked out over the city of Paris.

His heart was heavy with dread, for Henri had gotten himself into a situation – a situation that was not going to resolve itself quietly or easily.  In fact it seemed likely that the next few hours and days were going to be very difficult for Henri indeed.

An attractive man with a quick wit and a sparkle in his eye, Henri had never struggled to attract female attention.  His latest conquest however, had mistaken the seriousness of his intentions and had this morning announced her plan to leave her husband for him.  This was not what Henri had in mind when he started their dalliance; he’d simply been looking for a little fun and she was, after all, an extremely beautiful and intriguing woman.

What made this morning’s announcement chilling rather than a mere frustration however, was the husband in question … Henri’s boss.  Henri’s very influential and very dangerous boss who was known in equal parts for his brutality and his adoration of his beautiful wife, Celine.

Why Henri, why?” he asked himself, head in hands.  “How the hell are we going to get out of this one?”

After much contemplation and with an even heavier heart than when he arrived, Henri headed back down the steps toward his office in the city.  He spent the remainder of the afternoon there organising his affairs, then left for the airport where he had booked a midnight flight to a place far, far away from his comfortable life in Paris, never to return.

Celine, 6pm …

Celine climbed the lichen-clad, rough-hewn steps to the small stone building on the top of the hill and gazed through the heart-shaped window that looked out over the city of Paris.

She adored this view … her city, a city that pulsed with passion and excitement, a city that was hers for the taking.  Celine was a stunningly beautiful woman; a woman men dreamed of possessing, but none ever would.  It amused her to think her husband Bertrand truly believed he possessed her.  Although Celine outwardly acted the part of the dutiful wife, in reality she detested Bertrand’s common, oafish ways; his attempts to buy style and position; his lack of sophistication.  He was however, wealthy.  Very wealthy, and that suited Celine well, for Celine had a plan, and unfortunately for Bertrand, the plan didn’t involve him.

Celine’s heart actually belonged to her beautiful lover, Marcheline.  The sequence of events Celine had started that morning had everything to do with Marcheline and their wish to spend the rest of their lives together, revelling in the luxury Bertrand’s money would afford.

This morning she had informed Henri she was leaving Bertrand for him and the egotistical fool had believed her.  The disbelief, followed by the slow realisation of his imminent and extreme danger was comical to watch.  He was a fool, but he was not such a fool as to hang around and wait for Bertrand’s response to the knowledge of their “relationship.”  Henri’s inevitable and timely disappearance would make him the perfect scapegoat later that night when the police answered a call from Bertrand’s hysterical wife who had found his poor lifeless body, shot once through the heart.  She was almost looking forward to her tearful confession of the affair with Henri and relating how he had turned so bitter when she had tried to end it with him …

Celine glided back down the stone steps toward the mansion she shared with Bertrand, the next step in her plan clear in her mind.

Marcheline, 11pm …

Wearing Celine’s silk gown and Chopard diamonds, Marcheline swept into the bedroom Celine shared with Bertrand and laughed as she registered Celine’s look of utter confusion.

“Pack your bags and leave Paris, Celine” Marcheline purred, as she settled herself comfortably in Bertrand’s lap.  “Bertrand and I have a wedding to plan.”

Enjoy …