Alexandra Smythe and Cate Clarke (School of Flaunt) like to think of themselves as the Emily Posts of the 21st century with a touch of dry humor. The Ladies met when they were flight attendants for a major American International carrier and flew around the world. From observing the American public and watching the slow decline of how people dress, walk, talk and in general handle themselves they started to joke about how the world needed their advice. Both came from families where the mantra was, “Remember you are a reflection of your parents. Do not embarrass us.” The ladies would just shake their heads, or raise an eyebrow at some of the things they witnessed. From people who did not know they were suppose to use a tissue not their finger for their nose, getting on the plane with hair curlers still in, clothes that looked like they were ready to do yard work and yes even the Mile High Club in the lavs.
One day when discussing this sad state of affairs, Alexandra said, “Oh no one knows how to have any flaunt now. Look at them, this is really so sad. The days of great jewelry, designer clothes and style seem to be gone. Heaven only knows how they live at home.” Cate immediately replied, “Yes, we should start a school for everyone even the nouveau riche. We could call it The School of Flaunt.” To which Alexandra replied, “Well, we will need a “how to” book for them.” And Cate replied, “Well let’s write one.” And so The School of Flaunt Handbook was conceived. Chapters were called Lessons and included wardrobe, manners, politics, schools, hobbies, your pets, charities and your home and decorating; everything that a sophisticated and stylish life should be like. The handbook ends with from Lesson Seventeen: Womb to Tomb, which covers baptisms, weddings and yes even your funeral. Nothing is left to chance by these two ladies.
(Illustrated images by Joel Woodard )
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