Paula's Place

Paula's Place

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

It's not fair!

On Saturday night I walked into a pub ~ nothing unusual there ~ the guys I was meant to be meeting had not arrived so I was on my own, no problem I ordered a pint and waited.   I was dressed a little unusually, in as much as having just finished playing in a concert I was still wearing my dinner jacket and black bow tie (I was also wearing pantyhose and ladies dress trousers but that was a lot less obvious).   I did attract a few odd looks but nothing threatening.    After a while the others arrived and we had a nice sociable end to our evening.

I couldn't help but consider what the situation would have been if I had been dressed as Paula.   I am quite sure that although I would probably have been quite safe I would have felt a lot less secure.   I know I would have got even more attention.   Since I have been going out I am so much more aware of what it means to be a lone female, many of the things that as a man I can do without concern or consideration are taboo for me, or any other lone female.   Things as simple as going into a Pub on my own, or walking down the street after dark.

This is a shame, personally because it limits what I can do, but more to the point it shows what an unfair, unequal society we still live in.   It is not right that there is so much that is accessible to me as a man that is not available to my wife or daughter, by no means least something as basic as personal security.   I suspect that Girl's like me have a unique perspective on this, so maybe we should speak up about it.

Monday, 27 February 2012

More Fashion

Browsing through the web for London fashion week I came across Jonathan Saunders' collection there is a lot of this that I like very much.   To my shame his is not a name I know well but will be watching out for in the future.
This is a really nice dress, not sure I have the figure for it ~ but it would be fun too try.

Of course there was also the self indulgent rubbish that will never be worn, and will have no influence on the high street.   I don't know if the idea of these creations is to publicise the designers name by ensuring a photo in the press, or just the drive to try to be different.

As I get older I am becoming more interested in fashion,, maybe it is the influence of my teenage daughter, but I think it is just that as other more masculine interests get less, err interesting other interests emerge.

Sunday, 26 February 2012

A Dedicated follower of Fashion

I'm not a particularly dedicated follower of fashion; I enjoy watching Gok Wan but much of that is about his personality and generally it seems that whatever I am told is in doesn't look terribly practical and does not translate into what I see out and about.   Having said that I did take a look at a couple of the new collections and some of the stuff around London Fashion week.   I do like quite a lot of the Versace Collection, a lot of this lot look as though they could actually be worn on real occasions by real people.   There are some items that if I could afford them and had the chance I would wear, but I am not at all sure about the boots though.   Although the hem line is either a little higher or a little lower than i prefer there is a high necked black and white dress that I particularly like ~ of course this all well beyond my salary scale, but a girl can dream can't she?

A sure fure way to cheer yourself up

Friday, 24 February 2012

Girl Scouts

We don't really have Girl Scouts in the UK we just have scouts but this peace from Stana on Femulate makes me realise how fortunate I am in where I was born and where I live.

I also couldn't help noticing this from Oddie, make of it what you will.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Not much really

Most of the time I am very busy at the moment, and have little time to think about anything at all outside of what I am doing at the time.   For the Lent period I shall be out at least four nights each week, so that will add to the stress levels in the whole household as well.   In the terms of this blog it also means that dressing is not on my mind much, every now and then it does rear it's head but mostly there is just the odd little background thought.

I am aware that there is at least one comment that really needs my attention, but, please accept my apologies I have other priorities at the moment ~ closer to home.

A couple of things I have noticed this morning is a comparison between Tip Wilkins of Skinhorse and Andrej Pejik

Also an interesting couple of peaces by Janie on her blog, one an interesting different take on the "is it just about the clothes?"  and in the light of what I wrote here a very short peace on the joys of being male!
Tip Wilkin

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Grayson Perry and the purpose of art

I have written before of my fondness of visiting an exhibition and my interest in the activities of Grayson Perry, I'm afraid that I have been too busy with work and stuff to take advantage of an opportunity to combine these two pleasures.   Perrys' exhibitions the "Tomb of the unknown craftsman" at the British Museum will be closing soon and I just haven't time to get there.

I would like to thank Stana for bringing to my attention this interview with Perry, if anything it serves to enhance my esteem of him both as an artist and as a person.   Although iI was originally drawn to Grayson Perry because of our shared cross dressing activities I find that his work is always interesting and always has something to say.   I am of the opinion that the purpose of art is to communicate, and if the art fails to communicate to the viewer the intentions of the artist then it is just decoration, and of our decorators we probably require a better technical standard than most artists can manage.

Monday, 20 February 2012

Heavy stuff

While surfing through the blogosphere I recently read a post on a blog that really moved me, the stupid thing is I can't remember the name of the blog, or find it now.   It was written by the partner of a cross dresser, she gave voice to the pain that her husband had given her by concealing his "habit" by recounting the experience of helping a friend clear up her deceased husbands things, and coming across his stache of pornography.   This has had me thinking quite hard ever since I read it ~ I think those of us who do indulge ourselves in unconventional activities have a duty to our nearest and dearest to inform them.

I can't imagine the pain that could be caused to my family if I had a fatal car accident while dressed, or if something happened to me and my brothers were left with clearing things up and found my "wardrobe".   Maybe it is an age thing, I have now passed the point where I have longer to live than I have already lived.   My wife does know, she doesn't like it but she knows, by her choice no one else in the family does.   Another member of a forum I belong to has suggested leaving note explaining ~ just in case.   That seems better than nothing but not quite enough.   More than ever I feel that if I am going to continue with this ~ and I don't really think I have a choice ~ I think I have a duty to to be honest about it.   I know that at the moment my wife thinks that she does not want me to be out, but I think that if the worst did happen then she would appreciate the support of a friend who was already aware of what I do and what I am.

So what do I do about this, I have already written of my regret of not telling my wife earlier, of how the lie has marred our relationship, I think I should tell strategically selected friends.   Friends who will support my family if needed, friends who even if not supportive will not condemn.   I will give this more consideration, and probably will post again, but if you know the blog I am referring to please let me know who it is so I can thank them for making me think.

As an aside check out the tildes

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Worth a Second Look

Although it is only a week it seems like a long time since Paula went out ~ maybe it is because I am so busy with work and stuff ~ I am also pretty tired much of the time so I find I am not even thinking as much about going out as I have at time in the past.   A few times recently I have thought about shaving my legs and painting my toes nails ~ but then I think about it a bit more and decide that since I have no plans to be going out I won't bother.

When I do go out I like to look as good as possible, I like to make sure that all my jewelry matches ~ either silver or gold.  I select my eyeshadow according to what I am wearing, make sure that my whole look is an ensemble rather than just what I happened to put on.   Don't get me wrong I am no fashion model I just try to look as good as possible.   I do this when in drab as well, I will spend longer selecting a tie than my wife will spend choosing her whole outfit ~ for her most of the time it is just a question of what is clean.

Now what this is all leading up to is that I am conscious that quite often I get a "second look" I normally put this down to my height, my heels and my hemlines. certainly when wearing longer dresses or trousers the looks come less often.   In short I try not to look like a parady of a woman, I am not in drag, I am not dressed liek a hooker, I always try to be well dressed.   I am quite sure that I am "read" all the time I am out I am also sure that I don't get the second looks for the same reason as Kim over on travelling transgendered.   Note it was also Kim who coined the phrase "travelling pretty"

A walk on the tilde side?

Meg has come up with an idea!

You may have noticed that like a lot of bloggers I use a - quite a lot in my writting, somehow it seems to fit the conversational style I am trying to adobt.   Where () seems not uite right and; a bit formal I use a -.   Meg uses a tilde ~ and proposes that we all adobt this as some sort of "secret signal" in our e-mails etc. see what she says in full here.

I am not at all sure that this will work, but since I agree with Meg that it does look nice, feminine, and informal I will start to use the tilde.

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Compulsive Behaviour

I have recently discovered Janie's blog she often has interesting and challenging thoughts, but has this week posed us all interesting questions on why we do what we do, and is what we do acceptable. In turn her thoughts were provoked by this post from the blog "Healing from Cross Dressing".   this site takes as it's premise that cross dressing is
  1. A sin 
  2. Harmful to families and society in general
  3. Curable behaviour
It is also written from a christian point of view.   As a christian myself I have to take seriously at least some of what is written here, I would certainly give value to the points on damaged relationships, although i may question the reasons.   If you can read bot blogs with an open mind and see if you can come to any conclusions.   I haven't managed to yet.

Suits you SIr

As I have mentioned all too often things are very busy round here at the moment, I have a very big job on and still have all my normal work to fit in around it.   This means that most evenings I am just coming home and flopping on the sofa till crawling of to bed to prepare for it all starting again in the morning.

On Monday I did have an interesting day, on behalf of one of my consultancy customers I attended the AGM of a trade Association.   This is an organisation I used to be very active in on behalf of a former employer so I knew quite a few people there, and f course the meeting involved all the usual social aspects of these things with a nice(ish) lunch etc.
From the point of view of this blog what was interesting was how I was dressed and how I felt.   This was one of those rare occasions when I had to be in drab and looking good.   I wore a dark blue two piece suit grey shirt with paisley silk tie.   Underneath I was wearing boxers, men's socks, and black oxfords.   Indeed my entire ensemble was male, but having said that I knew I was looking good, I even had a compliment from one lady on my choice of shirt and tie!   The thing is I knew I looked good, this made me feel good, I was confident and relaxed.   I walked straight and stood tall.  

Now when I used o wear a suit every day these self same clothes would not have had that effect on me, I wonder how much of how we feel is down to what we wear, like an actor getting into character through the costume......Anyway back to work now

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Zip files

Something Stana posted reminded me of a situation I found myself in last summer this is a post I put up on a forum at the time

"I was a little upset the other day. For reasons that can only come under the heading of "it seemed like a good idea at the time" I was wearing tights (pantyhose) and panties under my drab trousers, I then found myself with a little unexpected free time so did a little shopping, browsing the charity shops, I bought a pair of black & white open toed pumps in one shop, moved on to another and found a nice black & white print dress. Well I at least had to try it on, into the changing room all seemed fine, but I couldn't quite reach to do the back zip up all the way.

I felt quite mischievous so stepped out of the changing room and asked the assistant if she could just zip me up, bearing in mind that I had gone in wearing male work trouser shirt and loafers, and came out not just wearing a dress but also hose and heels I did expect more of a reaction, than "of course dear, that really suits you"- well after that I just had to buy the dress."

so far I have only had the one occasion to wear this dress, which is a shame since I really like it, and although it is maybe a bit young for me it always puts a smile on my face.

Monday, 13 February 2012


Sometimes I am so glad that we just have a couple of cats
I often have this problem with Smudge

And this one with Ripple

On the other hand I don't have this one with either yet, that's why I keep my trombone and tubas in thier cases

Back to Friday

Back on Friday I was talking about my shopping trip trying to find some boots for the bad weather.   Having drawn a black in Banstead I moved on to Epsom town centre.   There are a of of Charity shops there so I thought I would have a good chance of finding what I wanted.

My first problem was parking.   As I drive a van I really need surface parking and nearly all of the parking in Epsom in multi-story.   I eventually found somewhere but had a longer walk than I would have liked.   By the time got back to the town centre most of the shops I wanted had closed.   It does seem strange to me that these shops that are so keen for our business and support close at 5:00 on a Friday.   Anyway I did manage to visit a couple of of them but drew a blank.   I then visited the Ashley Centre - a Mall with a fair variety of shops including a House of Fraser, I popped in here and at the Lancome counter found they were offering a 5 day free trial sample of their new foundation.   They did not have quite enough of my colour so I was given a couple of days worth and was asked to come back in a couple of days for some more, I am sure I will do my best to take them up on this as I love Lancomb.   Going upstairs to the fashion department I glanced through the sale rails on the rail marked £30 or less I found a lovely orangey red silk dress, it looked like it could be my size and was just beautiful, before trying it on I thought I should just check the price - just as well I did it was marked down to £185 from £235   I showed it to the assistant and joked about it being on the wrong rail and how it showed what good taste I had, she responded well and we had quite a chat.   After using the "facilities" I moved on.

I always think that the standard of the loos in a department store are a good indication of how they see themselves and their customers, the ladies in this House of Fraser were quite nice but nothing special.

I gt a new battery put in my watch at the H Samuel's, resisted the Claire's and headed back to the car park.   Realising that I was a fair bit later than expected I sent my wife a sims warning her that I would be late as I had bumped int a friend and we were going for a quick drink, to back this up I did pop into a bar for a half, before changing back into drab and making my way home.

All in all a good afternoon out - too short and rather disappointing in not finding any boots but fun.

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Read all about It

Spotted in the Telegraph an article about no gender specific fashion models (my words not thiers).   We are all aware of Andre and his ilk, but now so is the Telegraph.   This most conservative of organs is a friend to trannies?

The game is afoot

Banstead High Street
Banstead High street had lots of charity shops, I was sure I would be able to find something I liked at one of them.   First I went into the British Heart Foundation - nothing, then St Raphael's Hospice, who had a lovely dress suit in navy with cream piping, I loved the style of the jacket, no lapels just a nice rounded collar running down to the single cream button, I tried this but decided with mixed feelings that it was a little large for me (yea a size 18 too large!). next the Tadworth Children's Trust, they did have a pair of low heeled boots in my size, but they were so clumpy and - well - masculine that I just couldn't see the fun in them.  

Barnardo's,  Marie Curie, Cancer Research, Oxfam, nothing in any of them.   I did see another dress suit I liked, but that one was too small, as was another dress I tried on, although I got the dress on without too much trouble having decided that it really was a little too small I found I couldn't reach the back zip, so I had to go out into the shop and find an assistant to help me get undressed!   Fortunately for me this shop was staffed by nice youngish women who were happy to help and suppressed any inclinations they might have had to giggle, if it had been some older man, or even a dishy young one I would have been even more embarrassed.

This is the trouble with using the charity shops, not only do you have to be lucky to find what you want, but you have to find it in your size as well, you can't come out and say "could I try this in a size 16 please".   On the other hand they are cheap, fine for the light usage I will be giving my purchases and support valuable work.

Having had a lovely time in Banstead, but still drawing a blank I moved on to Epsom town centre.


Things have been very busy and I have barely had time to think never mind construct a post, yesterday I didn't even manage to turn on the computer.   That meant that once I did get home today and fire up the laptop, I had two days worth of cartoons to catch up on - well you have to do the important things first.

The Suit, photo taken last September
I managed to finish building my first fence of the year this morning, and with the snow covering everything else I didn't think I could get anything useful done so I took the afternoon off.   A quick dive home to change my undergarments for something less sensible before making a visit to the timber merchant to order the wood for my second fence of the year.   I was wearing a couple of pullovers and a fleece so I am quite sure that my bra, even though quite padded, was not obvious.

Even though I couldn't get completely changed at home it was nice to be able to all the underpinnings right, in comfort. All I had to do to be in full fem attire was to slip in my forms, swap my jeans for a skirt, change my shoes and take off the top pullover and put on my suit jacket.   Apply makeup and slip on wig and jewelry, I was now doing my business woman escaped from the office for the afternoon act.  the weather here is very cold and as a concession to this I was wearing think tights, I would have liked to wear boots, but mine have far to high a heel for this outfit, and this weather.   My aim for the afternoon was to do a trawl of the charity shops to find some nice boots with a low heel for bad weather wear.   I decided to start my hunt in Banstead - nice area lots of charity shops and a Nero's.

By the time I got to Banstead I busting for a pee, so I elected to visit Nero's first, buy a coffee and a cookie and make use of the facilities, refreshed and relaxed I could then commence my hunt.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Knickers to Panties

There was a post on a forum I'm a member of the other day where the member related a story which involved a stranger asking if he (he was in drab) was wearing panties.   It later became clear that she actually referred to women's pants or something like that.   My question is why is that on every CD or TV website I see (and I will confess to that being quite a few) female nether undergarments are always called panties, but everywhere else pants, knickers, slips, briefs, indeed pretty much anything except panties.

Maybe this is a transatlantic thing, but I suspect that pants is a gender neutral term, and that pantie is quite specifically feminine.   After all what man would wear something like these Janet Reger Red and black floral print satin brazilian briefs.

Given half a chance that is...........................................

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

How to look sexy

10 Top Tips here  there could be a proble with no.4, but don't over do no.10

New Shoes

I see that Christian Louboutin has a new celebration range out today the Telegraph shows them all here the new Capsule Collection celebrates 20 years of these famous red soled shoes.   for more on these ad the man take a look at his (rather wacky) website

I will admit to a weakness for shoes, and these shoes are almost the epitome of femininity, I love them but my budget doesn't allow, so I shall just have to continue to admire from afar

Baby it's cold outside

When I set out this morning (Monday) I think it was just under freezing, certainly too cold to get any work done.   I probably wouldn't have gone out at all only I had arranged to meet the customer so had to.   After sorting out what had to be sorted out, I dived off to take a look at another garden prior to putting together a design and quote.   By the time I was finished there it was about 11:00 and still too cold to work.   Having anticipated this situation I decided to get changed and go for a coffee and do some charity shop shopping.

What I was after was a pair of sensible, practical boots to wear in just this sort of weather,  I trawled around Wallington and Carshalton and found nothing that would do, I even popped into Matalan on Purley Way, Croydon but again nothing that would do.   One of the Charity shops had a perfectly lovely plum coloured Marks & Spencers suit, jacket trousers and skirt.   Although I expected this to be too small for me, the trousers and skirt were a perfect fit, unfortunately the jacket was far too small.   If it had just been a little snug I would have bought it anyway and tried to "get away with it" but it was way too small, just another reminder that I am not a normal girl shape.   I also stopped at Nero's in Wallington for a coffee, in so many ways it was a lovely way to spend the fag end of the morning the real shame was that by this time it had warmed up a bit and I could get on with some work.   I always feel such an anti climax, a let down, a disappointment when I get changed back into drab.   Somehow there is something very sad about cleaning off the makeup and returning to reality

Sunday, 5 February 2012


When I was a youngster a trannie was a transistor radio, back then they were new and very small, well they seemed very small to us, small enough that you could hold it in your hand, up to your ear to listen to music, or put it in your pocket with an ear peace to listen to the Cricket during maths' lessons.   Now the word trannie has other connotations, for many of us it is an insult, for some an affectionate term for who we are, or what we do.   Many embrace the term trans, but trans what
  • Transgender
  • Transsexual
  • Transition
  • Transvestite
  • Transitory
Well I'm not sure I like the term transvestite, not so much because of the sexual overtones, it just sounds too much like one of the tribe the Jews fought against in Joshua and Judges.   I'm not sure that I am really transgendered, and I am sure I am not transsexual, I certainly (currently) have no intention to transition, but I do enjoy transvesting myself as I find it quite transformational, transcending the relief found from other Transactions.  

At the moment I think I can consider myself to be a transient woman, in as much as I am an impermanent woman, I am a woman only for short duration.   This of course is just a reflection of my current situation, but that is of course transitory, and anything could transpire.

Much of this has been transcribed from my dictionary or transferred into script from thoughts I had earlier, although not while in Church this mornings as I would not want to transgress while in the transept.  Well now I have transilluminated this I hope it is now all transparent

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Not quite True

Yesterday I said that I didn't buy anything interesting or fun, what I should have said was that I didn't buy anything fun while I was out dressed.   Earlier in the day while on my various errands around timber and builder's merchants I popped into Lidl's in Beckenham and picked up this
And these

and these

Friday, 3 February 2012

Time for a coffee

I have been a bit down lately, it has probably shown in my posts, largely I have been very busy and most of the time pretty tired, well today was very cold and I had an odd selection of work lined up.   Yesterday my customer threw me a real googly, and changed her mind about the whole job, what was going to be decking would now be paved, and add in a new fence, as long as the price was right.   So first off I had to load up the van with a load of hardcore which went to the builders merchant, where I could start sorting out my prices.   By the time I had sorted all that out and given the customer the bad news, I just didn't fancy doing hard labour in freezing conditions.   So I decided to pop out for a coffee.

When I say pop out to be honest I was already out, but before going for my coffee I got changed.   For various reasons I did have some clothes with me and I was already wearing tights (for warmth) and panties (for fun), however due to the limitations of what I had with me I didn't really end up with a terribly appropriate outfit.   What I did end up with was a purple top, the black leather mini skirt thick grey tights and my black high heeled boots.   I had all my makeup, jewelry and a wig with me so did my best to make myself presentable with relatively subtle jewelry and makeup, then covered up as much as possible with my long overcoat.

I only had an hour or so as Paula so I just had a coffee and did a little bit of shopping (all boring stuff nothing fun in the shopping basket today).   The staff at Superdrug were helpful, the girls at Nero's were friendly, I might have got a couple of second looks as I was walking around, but wearing those boots that's hardly surprising.   I was aware of a few glances in Nero's (coffee shop), but then again my heels were high and my skirt short.   Although I was still wearing my coat, with the buttons undone I was showing quite a lot of leg.

It was only when I used the facilities prior to leaving that I had a chance to properly look in a mirror, this was when I realised that I had a little chest hair showing, not much but if you looked you could see it. So either everyone was being very polite, or not very observant.   Not much of an adventure, but it still managed to considerably lighten my mood, now I find I have a barely controllable urge to paint my toe nails.........

Many a word.....

Spoken in jest - what is the rest of this saying? something about showing the truth I believe.   Anyway this cartoon in the Telegraph this morning falls into that category.
In our household at least I tend too be the most liberal minded and the one that will want to consider all aspects of a situation before coming to a conclusion.

Thursday, 2 February 2012


I'm a little down at the moment, I'm very busy with work and not getting any chance to relax, or indeed to espress my fem side, (although that is not espressed at home!) so here I am lounging at home on teh sofa, with a glass of wine and a bag of hubugs.

humbugs are my favorite sweets minty and toffee at the same time, yum! best thing of the day.

Jean Genie

Well today (Tuesday) has been a bit of a mixed bag really, went to my first customer of the day and found her on the phone, with what turned put to be a scam, fortunately I was able to show her how the scam worked and saved her £99 and possibly a lot of personal information.  From there it went down hill, snow, my wife's car conking out and the whole afternoon being waisted.

I did find I had a couple of free minutes after going to the bank at lunch time so I popped into a new Salvation Army Charity Shop, they have a lot of femme stock but not much male, however I did notice they had some Levis in my size for £4.49 so I bought them.   When the assistant rang them up she was very apologetic as they were showing as women's wear - yet I had picked them off the men's rack and as far as I can see they are men's.   For some reason she was much more embarrassed about this than I was, but I didn't explain why.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

No Hugs

I am a little disappointed that no body commented on my heroes, so a short explanation of who they are and why they are heroes.
  • Fran Cotton was the England and British Lions prop (he played both sides but best as a lose head) when I first started playing Rugby.   He was a towering presence on and off the rugby field, both as a player and as a captain he exemplified the hard, physical but fair way the game was played at the time.   He was very strong, very big and worked very hard at his game and his technique I don't think we have seen his like on the rugby pitch since.   After retiring from playing he became a voluntary administrator and amongst other things he managed the successful 1997 Lions tour of South Africa.   He is still busy trying to drag the RFU into the 21st Century.   As well as all of this he founded and is CEO of Cotton Traders - not bad for a poor lad from "oop north"
  • Sir Joseph Paxton was a gardener, who refused to be limited by his position, he designed the Crystal Palace, laid out the grounds and more or less invented the modern public park.   Although his attention was often on the effect he was still by all accounts an excellent plants man, bringing new species cultivation in the UK.   Having lived all my life in the shadow of the Crystal Palace Sir Joe has always been a figure of inspiration in my life.
  • To say John Fletcher played the Tuba is a bit like saying Leonardo painted a bit, he was the principle with the LSO and Philip Jones but it was as a soloist that he reached a level of fame listen to this and this and you will see why.   Fletch was the first real virtuoso on the tuba there have been a few since but he paved the way.   He was also a really nice bloke who was never slow to acknowledge others abilities, I think I learnt more from Fletch in 10 minutes than from other teachers over months.   The only trouble is that after hearing Fletch they expect us all to be able to do it.
  • Stana taught me that cross dressing did not have to be about sex and degradation.   Here was a proud lady happy in herself and making the most of the lots life had cast  for her.   It is only through reading Femulate that Paula came to life and Paula's Place exists.