While she’s renowned across Australia for her time in politics, Julie Bishop has also become somewhat of a fashion icon in recent years, thanks to her impressive stiletto collection and designer wardrobe. And the former foreign minister showed off her dazzling sense of style on Saturday as she stepped out on the town.
The 64-year-old former politician attended Cancer Council WA’s Puttin’ On The Ritz fundraiser at the Ritz Carlton Hotel’s Hearth Restaurant in Perth. The event was a sophisticated high tea to raise much-needed funds for the charity.
Bishop pulled out all the stops for the daytime bash, opting for a striking yellow and black midi dress, which came to a halt at her calves and featured a daring split up one side. The tight-fitting frock, which flattered the former lawyer’s figure, featured a bold black and white zebra print, with dramatic gold detailing.
The elegant dress also featured mid-length sleeves, making it perfect for daytime glamour, and Julie finished the look with a pair of black suede stiletto heels and a small black handbag.
Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, Julie hasn’t been pictured out and about as much as usual. However she did recently appear on the small screen, having taken part in the most recent series of SBS show Who Do You Think You Are?
The show followed Julie as she traveled to Wiltshire, England, where she learned about her four-times great grandmother Dinah Dalimore who lived in what was known as a ‘bastardy-prone subsociety’, which means that women were expected to have one or two illegitimate births before marriage, so potential husbands could be sure they’d be able to give them healthy children.
Despite being expected to have “one or two” illegitimate births, a local historian told Julie, Dinah went on to have four illegitimate children, which saw her arrested and thrown in the local bridewell – described as a prison for morale crimes – in 1803 with her youngest child. She died of dropsy at the age of 48, having never married.
But it was Dinah’s granddaughter – and Julie’s two-times great grandmother – Jemima Sims who made the move to South Australia, with her husband Thomas and baby son James, taking advantage of an offer of assisted passage to the then-British colony for agricultural labourers. Having established a life for themselves in SA and bought more than 200 acres of land, the couple welcomed six more children, including John Sims, Julie’s great grandfather. John then married Charlotte and the couple welcomed 12 children, one of whom was Julie’s maternal grandmother Myrtle.
“It’s quite an extraordinary feeling to have followed the life of people that I didn’t even know about before, who are my great great grandparents,” Julie said. “It’s a very special feeling.”
She added: “My family history is one of risk taking, not always conforming, being absolutely determined to do better, and that’s what I always did, particularly in politics.”
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