orange babies update…
Posted in africa, amsterdam, fashion, humanist September 24th, 2010 by pia

Mes amis, do you remember last year I wrote a post asking for childrens clothes on behalf of  House of Orange, the agency that represents my styling portfolio here in Holland? The request for clothes was for their charity organisation – Orange Babies – which works tirelessly to help HIV infected women and their children in Africa. To jog your memory, click here to read my original post about it, and also the post with the postcard  photographs (pictured below) we made displaying some of the clothes sent in, featuring some seriously sweet local amsterdam kids…

I’m pleased to let you know that the clothes made it to the children in Namibia and House of Orange wrote all about it on their blog last month. They wrote a post about each of the 6 days they spent there, including the day they held a little fashion show for the kids. There are heaps of photos, and the posts are inspiring and very moving. Click here to read them all, and be sure to scroll down to the end of the page to start with so you can read the days events chronologically.

It’s wonderful to see and read the results of this special project  – to know that the clothes that were sent in have made it to their destination. 3 cheers for House of Orange and Orange Babies, and thank you again to all who sent in clothes.


a great documentary in the making: banjo’s war…
Posted in australia, humanist, nature July 15th, 2010 by pia

view from plane, looking over central australia. photo by me, pjb.

Lara Damiani is a young australian filmmaker whose film-making adventures  I’ve been following closely over the last few years. I first heard about her through the Tibetan community in Dee Why, Sydney –  it was early 2007 and there was a rumour going around that this young woman had plans to go into Tibet to film. I was intrigued and inspired, to say the least. After doing some research I found out the rumour was true – Lara sold nearly everything she owned to set off for Tibet, risking her life to make a documentary about the plight of the Tibetan people. That documentary was Tibet’s Cry for Freedom, you may recall I wrote about it upon its release, right here.  Since its release, Tibet’s Cry for Freedom has been acquired by two international television broadcasters, and has screened at 14 film festivals across the world.

Lara has just embarked on another film making journey which I’ve been wanting to share with you for some time, this one is a little closer to home. Banjo’s War follows the story of the Alyawarr people of central Australia as they attempt to create a self sustaining community from mulga scrub on their land at Honeymoon Bore. It’s a story about self-determination, freedom, dignity, human rights and why the Government’s Intervention is wrong. The doco will be centred around Banjo Morton who led a successful walk-off back in 1942 and now, 68 years later has led another in protest against the Government’s Intervention.

collecting bush plums. photo by rusty stewart.

Filming has begun – last week Lara and her crew went to Alice Springs to attend the Gathering of the Indigenous and Non-Indigenous People. Here is a snippet from Lara’s account of the event:

“As I sat, filmed and listened to the stories from the Traditional Owners of their experiences after the Government’s Intervention, I came to fully understand their struggle. I couldn’t help but think of the thousands of years of history, tradition and culture that were standing before me over the course of the week – elders, children and other Indigenous Australians – and how little mainstream Australia really knows about the issues and the struggle affecting our Indigenous People. How rich Australia is to still have our Indigenous people. How sad it is that they are struggling to survive.”

This is a story that needs to be told, and I’m more than thrilled that Lara has taken this doco on board. I’ve been thoroughly enjoying seeing Lara’s photos and video journals come through from her visits with the Alyawarr people, and I thought I’d share with you one of my favourites below. It’s a little clip of young Jesse-Lee showing Lara how to find and eat bush banana – brilliant, check it out…

The completion of Banjo’s War relies heavily on donations, so if this is a topic that you are passionate about like me, you can help make this film happen –  for more info click here. And to see the film’s teaser trailer, click here.

Well done Lara, your work is awe-inspiring and I hope to meet you one day – even better, work together. Until then, as they say here in Holland, succes!

An’s lavender light up for auction…
Posted in artists, humanist, interiors November 11th, 2009 by pia

An_artwalkNYAn Hoang’s oil on canvas, Lavender Light

As part of the Art Walk NY (which is a benefit for the coalition for the homeless), my friend and artist An Hoang has donated one of her beautiful paintings called ‘lavender light’ for the auction. You can view all the works in the auction online (click here) and if you’re interested in bidding but can’t go to the event which is on November 17 in New York City, you can still place absentee bids by contacting the organisers (check details online here).

I love An’s work, and this painting is one of my favourites. Whoever wins Lavender Light at the auction will be one lucky soul, with a discerning eye for fabulous art.


orange babies: we need clothes to send to africa…
Posted in africa, fashion, holland, humanist June 24th, 2009 by piablog

Some of you may already know that as a stylist, I am represented by an agency. What does this mean exactly? well, it means that my agency holds my styling portfolio and if you want to book me for an upcoming project, you can contact them and they will organise everything.

Anyway, not only does my agency – which is called House of Orange – represent me, they represent hair and makeup artists, fashion stylists, models and photographers. They also have their own charity which is called Orange Babies and throughout the year they hold different fashion events here in Holland to raise money to help HIV infected women and their babies in Africa.


I will be helping out with one of the upcoming events next month and as part of the project we would like to send clothes to the children in Africa. We need HEAPS of children’s clothes and I was hoping some of you might have some to offer? We need clothes for children between 0-12 years, and we need them by the first of July which is only 1 week away! So, if you live in Europe and have some clothes you can offer, please send them to House of Orange at this address…


I hope to show + tell you more about the project once we get started on it next month, it is going to be alot of fun! For now, we need childrens clothes so please, send send send!

If you don’t have children’s clothes you can also send a donation or offer to be a sponsor for the event – for more information, please contact joanne.


please walk a mile in her shoes…
Posted in humanist May 28th, 2009 by piablog

i adore jen’s stella shoe collection polaroids.

My friend Connie is the loveliest. Not only does she live in one of my favourite cities in the world -that being Victoria, on Vancouver Island, in British Columbia – but she is creative, gorgeous, has impeccable style and does great things, for great causes. I will tell you more about her another time (sorry to whip the spotlight away from you so quickly Connie!), but for today I want to tell you a little about a fabulous fundraiser hosted by an organisation that Connie is the administrative coordinator for. The fundraiser is called Walk A Mile In Her Shoes

The concept of this fundraiser started in California back in 2001, and the “walk a mile” events are happening all over America throughout Spring (check the calender here for an event near you). On June 6 however, the Victoria Women’s Sexual Assault Centre will be holding their 3rd annual Walk A Mile in Her Shoes event, and I want to encourage all you Vancouver Islanders – and Vancouverites alike who fancy a trip to the island – for this fabulous fundraising event!

Walk A Mile in Her Shoes is an international men’s march to stop rape, sexual assault, and gender violence. Everyone is welcome to the event and you can visit the website to get registered, pledge your hearts out and then get prepared to have an awesome time while supporting an important cause in the Victorian community. You can get your friends and co-workers involved by forming a team but if you can’t make it, you can still help out right here by adding a donation to my friend Birger and Chris’ Walk a Mile in Her Shoes pledge! Birger, who has just moved to Victoria from Germany, has this to add:

“I’m walking because it’s the right thing to do. It’s important for us as men to change our perspective and engage in the issue of sexual violence by participating in positive events like Walk a Mile. Then we can start to understand this issue and how it affects so many people we care about. And – I also look forward to experiencing what’s it’s like to be almost 7 feet tall for a few hours!”

Please don’t sprain an ankle dear Birger!!

another favourite of mine from jen’s flickr set.

I’m also very excited to let you know that Walk a Mile in Her Shoes has just received an added boost from a Victoria couple who will be matching all pledges raised at the event over the next 3 years, up to a maximum of $80,000! The couple are giving the donation in an effort to help address a 1-year wait list for one of the Victoria Women’s Sexual Assault Centre’s programs. And as Connie points out, “that means by making even a small donation of $5.00, $10.00 or $20.00 to the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event, the Victoria Women’s Sexual Assault Centre would receive double what you give!”


jen’s gold swap shoes are so gorgeous!

So, if you fancy seeing a whole bunch of Canadian guys in heels – a sight I would absolutely love to see myself – please go along, I have no doubt you will have an absolute ball!


PS We will see more of Connie soon in the (blog)house as she will be setting her e-travel bags down in the guest quarters sometime in the near future. And I know you are gonna love her as much as I do. See you here soon Connie!


For more info about the event, including the walk route map and registration info, please click here.
To make a pledge, please click here.
All photographs with courtesy of photographer & stylist, Jen Gotch.