Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Farewell to the Original Fashionista

My mother was the original fashionista.  From the day I was born, she dressed me like a princess in petite designer knock-offs.  So it’s no mystery why my latest mystery A PURSE TO DIE FOR (co-written with Cynthia St-Pierre) has a fashion theme to it.

From the time I was five, I can remember happy Saturdays with Mom travelling the subway to Eaton’s in Toronto.  I would gaze at the super stylish manikins in the picture windows at Eaton’s and Simpson’s (both long gone) with pure delight.  It was the 60s and fashions were ‘mod’.  Colour sizzled. Makeup was bold.  And Mom was a gorgeous diva who turned heads everywhere. 

Many years later, I took my own trips down the runway in Vancouver and Toronto, as an occasional fashion model for Marilyn Brooks and others.  And trip is the right word!  Sometimes those high heels were a little too stiletto.

Now, my own daughter Alex rules the runway, and has taken over as the family fashion Diva.  Why?

One of the tragedies of my life is that my mother died mere months before A PURSE TO DIE FOR was published.  It was my gift to her – a fun and heartfelt thank you for the brightness she created in my life.  Mom was the sun around which this family spun.  Her love of beauty in art and clothes reflected the beauty of her soul.

Our heroine Gina in A PURSE TO DIE FOR has the same fashion addiction, and the same big heart.  What Gina recognizes – and what my mother so effortlessly portrayed – is that fashion is just down right fun, and we should take joy from it.

So to my dear Mom who walked the Rainbow Runway just months before A PURSE TO DIE FOR came out – this book is for you.  Miss you every day.


  1. I love the rainbow runway. I can picture your mother strutting down it, looking as she did in that photo on your desk.

    My mother was a diva too, but she threw up her hands in despair at me. I wouldn't wear wrinkle-free polyester or bright colours and my favourite clothing store was Goodwill. In the 70's, I was more Punk than Pop. My mother would have LOVED you.

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