It is always a challenge to match total appearance with the role one plays and make-up, accessories, even shoes or boots, can make or mar the appearance and credibility of the character. In a humdrum sense, ladies have, or are expected to assume so many roles, it is a natural extension in our fantasy world to continue this but in our pedantic perfectionism to seek total correctness. Mathematically speaking, the effect produced on our partners is always, I find, equated to the trouble taken and to complete the equation, brings maximum pleasure for us.

Appreciation, even self-appreciation, always seems to follow the wearing of these special items. I usually prefer seamed black stockings with high heeled shoes. Ankle straps are a favorite but although I have a wide variety of boots and shoes, some with spectacularly high heels, I have large big toe joints which prevent the wearing of all but a few for long periods. For photo sessions and party wear I can, however, manage all of them.

Parties are another way in which we girls can triumph or fail. Firstly it gives us a chance to wear that expensive and so deluxe evening ensemble. It also presents us with a challenge in that make-up, hair and accessories must be so perfect. The failure can come from not remembering the length of the parties and the standing one does. So the clothes and the shoes mustn’t wilt with the person.

Tight garments always appeal to me and slim hips help. One favourite of mine is a long black leather pencil skirt. It really hugs all the way down but is of the most superb leather, with silk lining and most comfortable to wear despite the restrictive appearance when getting into it. t am an all over size 16 and tall. It would be wrong of me to say that there isn’t the range of clothes to suit us if one can only find the time to shop around. That time, of course, is often denied to us for work or domestic reasons: hence the value of the photos, addresses and tips given in Atomage and elsewhere, not only for the specialist rubber and leather manufacturers but for the more usual fashion suppliers.

Over the years I have acquired a wide selection of dresses, blouses, skirts, coats and with the experience gained by time (why, oh why, can’t we get experience some other way?) have weeded out those which are not right for me. When told ‘You always look just right’ – I smile wryly and reflect on the blood, sweat, toil – and, yes, tears – it has cost to achieve this. But again that’s the essential female. Where would men he if we didn’t demand they strove for a greater degree of sophistication (and I don’t mean keeping up with the Joneses). It is nice to think that civilisation is the end result of female artifice. (Why not catch the sabre toothed tiger, dear, the skin would look lovely in this decorated cave!)

– ‘Janet’