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V.I Buys – morale boosters!

Chaps and chapettes, some good news and bad.

New York, 1929

The bad news is that yesterday I was made redundant from my day job. An occurrence better known to my Former Colonial friends as being ‘laid off’. Yes, you heard it here first: I’m soon to be joining the ranks of the great unwashed, the Jeremy Kyle audience, the Loose Women viewers. I might even have to get back into Neighbours. But don’t shed any tears for me lovely readers, because the good news is that I actually knew this was coming, and, recession aside, it couldn’t have come at a better time for me! In fact, I am over the moon!

O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay! (Fred and Ginger, of course)

I have been seriously unhappy at work for far too long, and I almost resigned a month or two ago, because I was becoming overwhelmed by the feeling that my job, indeed my entire career so far, was not what I am really meant to be doing. All my adult life, I have had two opposing opinions from my parents, my mother believing that you should follow your heart, and that anyone can do anything they put their mind to (she has had three completely different careers herself, always moving on when she became bored or unhappy); and my dad, who always told me that a job is a job, no one enjoys working, it’s just something you have to do to live, so swallow your pride and just get on with it; that sort of attitude. I have to say, being rather enormously materialistic where my wardrobe is concerned is largely responsible for me sticking with a job I loathed, every time I mustered up the courage to quit, I would think about all the things I wanted to buy, and before I knew it, another 6 months had passed.

But no more! The decision has been made for me, I am actually being paid to leave, and now I have no excuse not to go out and try something different. I’ll soon be seeing if I can’t make some of my hobbies start paying for themselves, and trying my hand at event management, which I believe I will be rather good at. So watch this space for more news about all the exciting projects which I have been lining up over the last few days. These projects involve everything from creativity, to clothing, to comestibles. I can say no more but please do stay tuned if you’d like to be the first to know.

However, positivity aside, being laid off is not remotely fun. Being told that you’re officially the least useful member of your team is always going to be rather upsetting, whether you allowed yourself to sink into this category, as I did, or not. There were a lot of tears shed yesterday. So I do feel in need of a pick-me-up, and am considering doing as 40s girls my age did, and turning to that old morale booster of WWII – a new lipstick!

It does still seem to be true that when times are tough, lipstick sales pick up, as women tend to pick small ways to treat themselves. The lipstick that I would love to try, however, is not really in the recession-friendly category, but it certainly would lift my spirits!

Bésame Cosmetics is a wonderful company, who specialise in vintage inspired makeup products, designed “to make women feel glamorous and unique”. And they certainly do that! I have a few of the original Bésame products in my posession – the trio pictured above, consisting of a lovely pink lipstick, blusher and loose powder; and a lipgloss that tastes of chocolate. The lipstick and the blusher come in gorgeous, gold plated containers and the powder in a bakelite one. Just marvellous! However, they withdrew all their old products a while back and have just relaunched their lipsticks with this incredible Voluptuous Lip Colour Set.

Now in sleek black packaging, the set comes with:

  • A pigment rich Voluptuous Lip Colour lipstick encased in a high gloss enamel tube
  • A velvety travel sleeve for the lipstick
  • A matching automatic lip pencil
  • A hand crafted lipstick brush ergonomically designed to fit perfectly between your thumb and forefinger for a precise application.
  • A detailed lipstick application guide

Now, I’m not sure how practical it is to sell them only as a trio, I have a feeling one could end up with an abundance of pencils and brushes, and at $35, it’s not cheap if you only need to replace the one. But it’s such a beautiful little set, isn’t it? I wonder about its staying power, as that is the main reason I am so devoted to my beloved MAC. But nonetheless, I would be willing to give it a try. I’ll take one each of the Red Velvet and Rapture Rose, please! 😉

That’s all from me for this week, hope you all have a splendid weekend. I am off to ponder exciting new projects. Here’s to a brand-new start!

Chocks away!

Fleur xx

PS. I did already cheer myself up this evening, with that so-very-British of dishes, Fish ‘n’ Chips.

I also slathered it in curry sauce, but that made it look even less appetising. It was, however, delicious.


Shrinky Inky

scary, exciting, challenging and all those things tied up in a satin bow! If anyone can make wonderful things happen for themselves, I believe deep in my heart it's you, Miss Fleur – you have untapped potential that can be *seen* through the monitors on our desks! Like Rosie said back in WWII, You Can Do It!


Fleur, I relate to your post on so many levels. Although I was not "laid off" from my job, I've seized an opportunity to leave what by all standard definitions is a financially cushy job that directly relates to my 10 hellish years of uni. studies. Why? To jump into the abyss of uncertainty with my hubby who is being transferred to another city for a job. This means unemployment for me, until further notice. What's gotten me through this fear of instability is the reminder of how much I have grown to despise my work and how much I too was just treating it as a means to get $$$ to buy pretty vintage goodies. As well, I had NO opportunity to express my own creative side. All in all, after the initial shock wears off, I'm sure you'll see that this is definitely meant to happen. You seem so amazingly creative and elegant and unique…I just know this was meant to be. Sorry I've gone on waaay longer than I should have and made it more about me than I wanted. Just know you are not alone!

Lila Leeds

I'm also "resting between engagements". I worked for a government department (really hated it, I was there for 15 years!). My section went through a restructure & I was offered a redundnacy. I took it & it has been the best thing that has ever happened to me.

I'm sure you will be fine. Infact, you will have lots of extra time to post more blogs!

Lila Leeds

I forgot to mention, a couple of weeks ago I was going to treat myself to a Beseme lippie. $30, well that's not too bad I thought, when I got to the checkout screen they wanted to charge me $30 postage!Ridiculous! Australia is a long way away, but I've never been charged that much before for such a small item.

Needless to say I didn't buy it.

Lemondrop Marie

Perhaps you were just the most lovely, intimidatingly stylish member of the team and the position called for someone schlumpy.
You are bound for bigger and better- and we'll all be hoping for you that it arrives quickly!


I love how you're treating this as an opportunity, rather than something utterly terrible (although not to make it seem like a lighthearted situation…). 🙂 I cannot wait to hear what new projects you're up to! I'm sure they're all simply marvelous! 🙂

Retro Audrey

I come from a very similar household… my mother constantly told me that no one likes their job and that we all just trudge through life doing what we really enjoy on the side. My father always felt that we should chase our dreams and if a job wasn't feeling right, life was too short to stay there. It certainly does make for an interesting internal dialogue/debate when you're not enjoying your job. 🙂

Things always do have a way of working out for the best and it seems as though fate found a way to make the decision you WANTED to make but weren't able to. I can't wait to see what this next chapter of your life holds…

As an aside, I actually work as an event planner so if you ever have questions or would like someone to bounce ideas off of I'd be happy to help.



Condolences on the loss of your job… but more importantly, congratulations on the opportunity to seek out new ventures!
I know how you feel… both my parents always encouraged me to do what I want to do, but they also encouraged me to be really practical, which led to some confusion on my part. For example, I'm a journalist, a job that I love, but my dad, while being proud of me, also told me I should consider switching to a technical writing "for the money." I decided not to listen to him, a decision made all the easier by the fact that there is NO money in any kind of writing nowadays! Journalistic or technical, I'm screwed either way! LOL. Sorry for the tangent… my point is, I have absolutely no doubt that you'll be successful in whatever venture that you pursue (look at how successful you've been with vintage modeling despite having a day job you didn't like) and I look forward to hearing all about your new adventures!


Best of luck to you! Sorry about the job. I always want to quit mine, but I think of my belly. 🙂 Hopefully this will be a wonderful oppurtunity to follow a passion.

The Girl Who Loves Velvet

Best of luck. I am sure you will do fantastically wherever you go!

P.S I stay true to your mother's words of wisdom- do something that you love and you will forever be happy.
Good luck!

Visit my blog- shelovesvelvet.blogspot.com

Aya Smith

SO sorry about work! I hope life takes you to a happier place… "it's always darkest before dawn"… sappy, but true!

Fiona at Notorious Kitsch

Fleur good luck with whatever you do! I had nearly always followed my heart, and have been much happier in life because of it, I'm not the richest person and sometimes I'm downright skint, but my life and destiny are not controlled by others and I can pretty much do what I want – which at the moment is mostly work but at least it's for me.



Oh Fleur, I'm so sorry to hear your news, but I'm sure that this setback will be the start of something incredible for you! I can't wait to read all about the next chapter in your life!

Fashionably yours,


Everything happens for a reason!! A blessing in disguise!! Sorry for the troubles, though.

Red Velvet is my fave Besame lipstick, although I do miss the original gold casings.

Take care~

Couture Allure Vintage Fashion

The same thing happened to me 9 years ago. I was unhappy in my job and knew I wanted to work for myself. I was laid off with severance, which allowed me the freedom to start my business and I've never looked back. Best of luck, Fleur! I know you'll be happier in whatever you decide to do.


Well, a blessing in disguise…love the packaging of the new lipstick. That would cheer me up too! Fried food does the trick nonetheless!


This recently happened to me, and am happier than ever- I'm doing freelance work that I actually care about for people who treat me well and am about to go back to school, so even though my finances aren't back to normal yet I wake up with so much more joy every day. I'm sure you will have great success with your new endeavors and, as you can see by all of these comments, you have many people supporting you in them.


My husband was in the same boat a year ago and like many people who posted above, it turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to us! He started working for himself and loved it, and that helped inspire me to strike out on my own as well. Now we both do our own thing, spend lots of time together, and have tremendous freedom. I've never been happier. I'm certain that a creative woman like you can make your way there as well!


So sorry to hear about your job. I'm sure you will do well in your new endeavors.
I tried a sample of the new Besame lipstick and found it stayed quite well. After going to a movie and eating popcorn & drinks, my lips were still lightly tinted. And of course with the lipliner, it would probably last even longer.

Rupert Alistair

I don't wear lipstick but I love fish 'n chips! 🙂 I'm sure a gal with your creative genius will be a smashing success at what endeavours she attempts. Best of luck to you!


Cherrie A. Dorable

My parents also think that you work to live and nobody likes their job, but I'm never gonna swallow it, I want to do what makes me happy and pleased or die trying! I'm so happy to read your story because I've been feeling like a floppy fish lately really doing nothing but trying to find the right path for me.

I wish the best luck for you and all of your projects!

Fleur de Guerre

Thank you so much for all being so lovely, at least I know I have so much fantastic moral support from everyone here. I will keep you all posted of course!

nicola ticola

I'm glad you see the positives – and there are so many! The world's literally your oyster (cliche but true!) and you're not short of talent or creativity to make the absolute best out of the situation. I'm a firm believer that we should strive to be doing something we have passion and love for – everyday. And this is your chance, so grab it I say – it's exciting! These are the best bits! Good luck, love Reading your blog, it's fantastic

Nicola xx


Andi B. Goode

My parents are quite like that, too!

You know, I think 35$ for that set is rather reasonable but that's probably because Mac lipsticks here, alone, cost about 40$ (AU$, of course). Well, my blush cost that much and I'm quite certain the lipsticks are the same price.

Anyway, you have all of my best wishes for your future ventures, Fleur!

-Andi x

PS I love fish and chips! Well…chips. I don't eat fish but it doesn't sound quite the same with fish attached to the beginning.

Helen Highwater

The Besame lipsticks last really well – they remind me a lot of MAC ones, to be honest!

I'm not sure about that set though – like you say, I'll end up with about 20 lipbrushes. :-/ That said, the lippies do last a very, very long time if you use a brush to put them on with. When will they make my lovely Red Hot Red again?!


I've just come back from signing on at the job centre, and its raining (double depression whammy) and I thought of your post. I toddled off and popped some lippy on, and I do feel a little better now. Good ol' wartime morale!

All the best

Bella Di Nonna

Hello lovely Fleur, I am sorry to hear about your redundancy, it must be very frustrating. However, really glad to hear that it will allow you time and space to do things you love!


Go for it Darling!

I once sold ALL my prized possession in Los Angeles…
3 years later I arrived in London, got Married, had a baby boy, and graduated Uni!

Never look back!

Smiles & Cheers,


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