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The School of Flaunt

Back when "Flying Was Fun" Alexandra Smythe and Cate Clarke were Flight Attendants with a Major International Carrier. Prior to Private Jets coming into vogue, Alexandra and Cate traveled in the First Class World, meeting and greeting the top celebrities, politicians who would become Presidents, nouveau riche, and yes the occasional Headline Grabbing Criminal in Handcuffs!

What the two ladies viewed and experienced became fodder for the School of Flaunt, so much money, such bad taste and oh those terrible manners. Something had to be done! Hence, The School of Flaunt Handbook was born. Read More

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A Reflection on Muhammad Ali, The Greatest One.

Category: SOF Divas’ Diaries ®  |  Permalink

Published: Saturday, June 11, 2016

A Reflection on Muhammad Ali, The Greatest One.

Manners ... remember to always be minding them.

Author ... Alexandra Smythe

Many, many years ago he was one of my passengers on a flight. I made it a rule to never ask for autographs since I felt it was an intrusion on their privacy and just not respectful. But in this case I decided to throw caution to the wind. A very good friend of mine had been in Nairobi during the "Rumble in the Jungle." The next day after the fight, the newspaper in Nairobi published a full page picture of Muhammad Ali with a title above it in two inch letters saying, "ALI is KING!" My friend purchased five copies of the newspaper. And this was not an easy task since they were flying off of the racks. Why did he purchase that many? Because he wanted to make sure that nothing would happen to just one copy on his way home from Africa. No one was even allowed to read these papers. Note: Always make sure you have a backup when possible! But I digress, after he got home he had the full page framed, put under protective glass and had it hanging in his office. So, now here was the KIng himself on my flight. What a gift I could give my friend, an autograph that he could include with that framed newspaper page. So I approached The Greatest and told him the story and asked if he would mind giving my friend and autograph. He smiled that radiant smile and said, "Of course but I need something to write it on." Thank God that day we still had plenty of TWA writing paper on board. (This was the golden age of flying remember, now you don't even get a pillow!) Muhammad Ali wrote, To Sandy: Peace on Earth. Muhammad Ali and the date. Well, to say my friend was thrilled was the understatement! He had the framed newspaper reframed and added the autograph. Many years later, Muhammad was flying with me again. I thought he might enjoy hearing the story and knowing how special that autograph was. He had Parkinson's badly then and couldn't smile easily but he gave me a half smile and softly said, "Thank you." I was glad to tell him how special that autograph was and how it was still hanging in my friend's office with that newspaper front page from Nairobi. He seemed to be pleased with it too. May you Rest In Peace sir, your pain has ended but you will always be remembered: ."Float Like a Butterfly ... Sting Like a Bee." #Muhammadali #Ali #Floatlikeabutterfly #TheGreatest #fighter #Nairobi

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The Met Gala 2016 is Flaunt at it's Best!

Category: SOF Divas’ Diaries ®  |  Permalink

Published: Wednesday, May 4, 2016




The Met Gala 2016 is Flaunt at it's Best!


The Met Gala 2016 is one for the books. Often referred to as "the party of the year" and "the Oscars of the East Coast," A-listers like Taylor Swift and the fashion elite converge at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City for the annual black-tie benefit for the Costume Institute.

Controlled guest list by Anna Wintour and sparkling celebs make this Red Carpet amazing. This year's theme was " Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology" and it did not disappoint. How much does it cost to attend? If you have to ask, you can't afford it. Free for top celebs, $30K for us regulars and $275K per table. They raised $12.5 Million in one "Save the Ball Gown" evening. Staggering.


If you missed it, we have our Favorite Flaunts:


Blake Lively in Burberry and Kerry Washington in Marc Jacobs , both pregnant and gorgeous.


Zoe Saldana in a long train of Peacock Floral Feathers by Dolce & Gabana.


Katy Perry in a Scary Black and Gold Prada! Scerry Perry


Lupita Nyong'o wearing a shimmering Calvin Klein and a Large Hair Chess Piece on her head.


Bey with a Super Jeweled Spanx Dress by Givenchy. She did look amazing.


Rita Ora in a Silver Swan Vera Wang ensemble.


Ciara with show stopping Silver Hair to enhance her gown by H & M. You heard right, H & M.


Karoline Kurkove in Marchesa & IBM that responded to tweets and emotions by changing color! She said the Battery Pack was "keeping her warm".


Lady Gaga in a Metal Circuit Board Bathing Suit and Cover Up by Atelier Versace and 10 inch heals that made us cringe for her. Any reports of sprained or broken bones? Seriously, did she get home in one piece?


Kate Hudson in a Peek a Book White Bridal Gown by Atelier Versace.. to which above mentioned Lady Gaga was supported herself by holding on.


Jenners and Kardashian-Wests in Balmain. No surprise there.


But the pies de resistance:


Clare Danes in a Cinderella Light Up Gown, by Zac Posen, she shared on Instagram prior to the Red Carpet.

Absolutely on theme and too gorgeous!


Now what will you do with your 30K you saved last night? Hope it's Flaunt Fabulous!!

Cate and Alexandra

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Valentine's Day or Love the Easy Way!

Category: SOF Divas’ Diaries ®  |  Permalink

Published: Saturday, January 30, 2016




Valentine's Day or Love the Easy Way!

It's almost February and there are signs of pink and red hearts everywhere. The PREASURE is on. But it doesn't have to be that way. Here at The School of Flaunt, we subscribe to a gentler, easier, dare we say, CHEAPER, Valentine's Day? Can't believe we are saying this but then we digress. Here are a few simple suggestions:

1. Do "not" go out to dinner on the 14th. You will pay too much and probably get poor service; plus the restaurants are mobbed. ICK! Go out on the 13th or 15th. There, so much nicer. But what do you do on the 14th? Read on.

2. Do make a delicious dinner "together" on the 14th. Together being the definitive term! Dinner and a good bottle of wine, hey, you might not need to eat out before or after. But we are telling you guys, you aren't off the hook for that meal out, it is a given. Don't be stupid here. Give her the roses and attached is an invitation to her favorite restaurant for a future date. This also applies for our same sex couples too. Trust us here; your evening will be much happier. You get our drift.

3. Remember old romantic moments with your spouse or significant other. Talk is Fun and Cheap! And no we are not suggesting that you scroll through your phone pics either.

To time consuming and frankly you have to go through so many dull pictures to find the one you want. You know what we mean, scrolling back and forth with the pictures. Blah, blah, blah! "Oh no that not's it, oh this is the one." Five minutes of that and you're finished. No romance there! Boring!

4. A small gift is always appreciated. Ladies, DON'T pressure your significant other into purchasing expensive jewelry for you! Did WE really say that? Yes ladies, you probably have enough or splurge once in a while yourself. Verdura, do we hear Verdura? Hello everyone, don't forget a gift does go both ways.

5. Cards are nice, but do you only toss them later? What about a LOVE LETTER?

And tie these love letters with a beautiful ribbon to enjoy later again and again. In fact why don't you start a tradition with your significant other that you each write a love letter to one another? If it is a good one, love will be in the air and possibly elsewhere too. You get our drift here.

6. After your lovely stay at home meal, binge watch House of Cards or Homeland. Nothing says romance better than our government at its worst/best. Or you can watch a recorded presidential debate. Possibly this might not lead to romance but put both of you to sleep on the couch together. Good wine is going to waste. Now that is tragic! Forget this horrible idea! And you do know we were kidding here? Please tell us that you knew we were kidding here.

7. Movies are wonderful. Pick a great one on Netflix and enjoy. Ladies if you want to do this suggest some movies ahead of time. Most guys aren't into "chick flicks" and probably you don't want to watch another Rocky movie either. Soooo, you can just have a sexy movie already set to play and surprise him! Now this he will like. We see you smiling here too. And please don't get wild here and make a sex film together. Tragically we know where some of this can lead. Unless you want to follow the career path of a certain Kardashian? Enough said.

8. Use candles to light your fire; just remember to put them out. We're talking to Cate's Mumsy right now. Burning the house down will not make for a special love night. Capish?!

9. And lastly we wouldn't think this necessary to say, BUT please do not plan a business trip on Valentine's Day. We are getting a headache from this and your significant other will probably have one for about a week! If you must be out of town, do all of the above at an earlier date, making it totally clear this is for Valentine's Day. We said, TOTALLY here!

So on Valentine's Day just enjoy your loved ones and count your blessings. If you're lucky, count your investments too!

Happy V Day!!

Your Divas of Good Taste and Flaunt Fun,

Cate Clarke and Alexandra Smythe

#Valentine's Day,#Verdura, #Kardashians

#Valentine'sDay #Verdura #Houseofcards #Kardashian

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Lesson Six: SOF Attitude, Manners and Etiquette

Category: Stay Out of Etiquette Hell!  |  Permalink

Published: Tuesday, September 1, 2015




Lesson Six: SOF Attitude, Manners and Etiquette

"Are You Behaving Badly?"


In our introduction to the School of Flaunt Handbook we spoke about how all of you are starting to resemble actors in fast food commercials. Smacking your lips and licking your fingers. Who needs napkins? How silly of us.

Unfortunately our society seems to be revolving around the mundane, reality television, or even worse yet the MTV Video Music Awards.

Yes, the unfiltered mouths of some which made it necessary to have tape delays to handle the abundant cursing, was again necessary!

We watched as Miley Cyrus made politically incorrect comments about Snoop Dogg, or is it Lion? saying he was "my real mammy." Stop and think Miley dear, we don't call anyone's Mother, Mammy anymore! We think that term went out with the Civil War?

And then we had Nicki Minaj who closed her speech with a throw down the gauntlet remark to Miley Cyrus when she said, "this bitch (meaning Miley) who had a lot to say about me last week in the press." Wow, Miley and Nicki now are having a moment! Gives us the chills. And we are all lucky enough to witness it live on TV. Does it get any better than that or are we just watching another form of a fake TV wrestling match? Could it be all about ratings?

But the truly sad thing about this entire evening was that our children are watching this nonsense and thinking this is the way you can act in society and get away with it. Rude, cursing, boobs popping out of clothes, which by the way the clothes on some of the parties were almost nonexistent. Tacky not sexy! But then that takes us to another topic of how to dress so we won't digress here.

All we are asking dear students of flaunt is that you conduct yourselves like ladies and gentleman. It truly isn't that hard and you will probably stand out from the crowd of the boorish and common.

Now that is not to say that you can't use new words that that are actually in the Oxford dictionary.

Take for instance "kayfabe". The fact or convention of presenting staged performances as genuine or authentic. It is largely used in pro wrestling circles, but the dictionary says it origin is unknown, except possibly as a reversal of the phrase, "be fake." Hmm do you think we saw many Kayfabes at the MTV awards show? Or maybe all of those reality TV shows are kayfabes? Just asking.

And we love this one. "Rando", a person one does not know, especially one regarded as odd, suspicious, or "engaging in socially inappropriate behavior." Do you think we saw enough Randos at the MTV awards? Maybe the MTV Awards show should be renamed to "MTV Randos." Has a certain ring to it.

Then believe it or not "awesomesauce" meaning extremely good or excellent has been added. Sorry we feel that one will be archaic in another year or two. Brings up that ad between the two sisters that you see every other minute on TV. Boring.

Puhleese, give us a break. Imagine you are sitting in a board meeting and you hear someone commenting about your latest proposal with, "awesomesauce." Well, you get our point? Don't you? Please tell us you do.

Then there is "on boarding" which comes from the HR department. It is describing the action or process of integrating a new employee into an organization or familiarizing a new customer or client with one's products or services. We happen to approve of this one. Succinct and makes sense.

Ever seen someone put Mkay at the end of a sentence? It is a non standard way of spelling or saying "Okay". Oxford says it is a way to invite agreement. Frankly we wouldn't put that at the end of a sentence. You will look very young and juvenile if you use that on your note to the boss, unless he is 25 years of age too. Okay.

But our favorite new word is Hangry. It means bad tempered or irritable as a result of hunger. So since we are hangry now, we will close with these final thoughts.

Please don't use vulgar slang and try to keep your new words appropriate to the situation and people you are speaking with.

We ask now that you repeat: dope, dude, like, like, uh, amazing, like awesome, Booyah, awesomesauce, and now you know what I'm talking about. If these sound like familiar banter then put your baseball cap on backwards or sideways. Now look into the mirror. If you think that you are Boardroom material or ready for Wall Street please never admit that you have read anything from the School of Flaunt. In fact if you have purchased our book please dispose of it immediately and tell no one that you have ever read it! Merci!

Your Divas of Good Taste,

Alexandra Smythe and Cate Clarke


#MileyCyrus #NickiMinaz #MTV #MTVV.M.A.s #Oxforddictionary

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Votre Maison All Gated Communities are not Created Equal!

Category: SOF Divas’ Diaries ®  |  Permalink

Published: Thursday, March 5, 2015


Margaret Russell and Mary Douglas Drysdale

Lesson Four:

Votre Maison "All Gated Communities are not Created Equal!"


Does Margaret Russell know where you live? She certainly should. Why? Because she is the editor-in-chief of Architectural Digest, the most prestigious interiors magazine in the United States. Keep Up Students!

This leads us to choosing an Interior Designer. Needless to say their job is usually easier when you have a view but basically their most important work is to introduce you to the elegance and taste of a truly unique home. Remember we said, "elegance and taste." Pity the poor home that has twenty rooms but is decorated piecemeal with objects from the Dollar Store or your local Assistance League. Note: Look to frequenting "estate sales" and we do not mean "yard sales" and absolutely no dumpster diving either! Chances of you finding anything of real value are a million in one shot. The thrill of the chase, wearing a hat, sunglasses and disguise to rifle through someone's trash with the hopes of finding an antique are just not worth it. But back to yard sales - Heaven forbid you are seen by someone's staff who might be at this yard sale and they recognize you. We feel like a "case of the bends" is starting at just thinking about that entire scenario.

If you bring this up to a prospective designer for them to do, well some might, but we seriously doubt that most would like to spend their weekends going to yard sales. Don't be surprised if this isn't their reaction: first we can see their eyes rolling up into the back of their head as you ask them to do this. Then they frantically are closing their portfolio of previous jobs, tripping over your ugly little coffee table that has your Grandmother's doilies on it and have started running for the nearest exit screaming for someone to help them find the front door! After they get back to their office they are trying to makeup their minds if they had just awoken from a nightmare or did it really happen? When they decide it was for real they will be on the phone ASAP. Wait until this gets around the decorating community. No one will return your calls!

Now if this isn't enough to make you stop and think, picture this awful scene when you are dumpster diving: the local police stopping you while you are rifling through someone's trash cans at night for a non-existent treasure. Remember they writeup reports that usually end up in the local paper to fill space but in this case it will probably make some headlines because of your status in the community: "Socialite Caught Rifling Through Upscale Neighborhood's Trash Cans!" When asked what she was doing she replied, "Oh dumpster diving for goodies. It is so much fun." Please will someone get us a glass of champagne and a pillow to relax on while we try to recoup from that ugly little picture! Your reputation is simply ruined, you might as well move out of town!

But we have digressed: back to choosing a designer, you might try a budding new one but be very careful here and if unsure stick with the tried and true designers with pedigrees that resemble: Albert Hadley & Sister Parish, Billy Baldwin, Barbara Barry, Mark Hampton, Barry Darr Dixon, Joel Woodward, Mary Douglas Drysdale or Mario Buatta. They are worth the investment and we are sure their designs will speak School of Flaunt.

We have only skimmed the surface of Lesson Four in The School of Flaunt Handbook. Here is one question from our Lesson Four Quiz:

What should a Gated Community have?

a. A Guard House manned 24/7!

b. A private golf course

c. If on the water, each home should have its own private dock

d. Air strip for private planes

e. $450 space rent for your double wide including trash pick up

f. A. B & C

Answer: F - Air strips are way too noisy for the neighbors. Think John Travolta with his commercial plane - YIKES! If the area should have landing rights for Helicopters make sure they have restricted hours. If you answered E you have been thrown our of the School of Flaunt!

Now who are these two lovely ladies pictured below? Puhleese this is one of our simplest questions! Scroll down below for the correct answer. And now go to our web site and get our book immediately!


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