When Tina Arena met stylist Cather­ine Baba on a flight to Paris, it was the start of a cre­ative friend­ship be­tween two fab­u­lous Aus­tralian Fran­cophiles.

VOGUE Australia - - CONTENTS -

CATHER­INE BABA (on set with Jean Paul Gaultier in Paris): “Hi dar­ling, how are you? Bon­soir!”

TINA ARENA (in re­hearsals in Mel­bourne): “Hello, how are you?”

CATHER­INE: “I feel like I’m in the womb of the world, speak­ing to both of you. It’s quite cosy in this womb …”

SOPHIE TEDMANSON (in the of­fice in Syd­ney): “Hello, ladies. I’m in­trigued to hear how you met and about your friend­ship.”

TINA: “We ac­tu­ally met on a plane [in 2016] when we were leav­ing Paris, and Cather­ine, you were ac­com­pa­ny­ing Martin Grant, who was com­ing back to launch the Qan­tas out­fits he had de­signed.”

CATHER­INE: “We met in the sky, of course!”

TINA: “Yes, and we just hit it off im­me­di­ately. En­er­get­i­cally, it was like: ‘Oh hello, I feel like I’ve known you all my life!’”

CATHER­INE: “I feel the same way dar­ling. I feel like we were sep­a­rated at birth.”

TINA: “We prob­a­bly were.”

SOPHIE: ”How of­ten do you get to see each other? Con­sid­er­ing you, Tina, split your time be­tween Paris and Mel­bourne.”

TINA: “I don’t know. We are al­ways trav­el­ling to dif­fer­ent coun­tries and when I’m in France I’m usu­ally there to work, but we’ll al­ways try and man­age a din­ner catch-up or some­thing, or we’re on the phone to each other. We do the best we can. I want to check in on her be­cause I adore her. I adore the woman, not just the tal­ent!”

CATHER­INE: “Ohhh, de­vo­tion! I adore you too!”

TINA: “It’s Cather­ine’s spirit that I ab­so­lutely warmed to im­me­di­ately: a woman from hum­ble be­gin­nings, who had a dream and fol­lowed it. I’ve got a lot of ad­mi­ra­tion for peo­ple who do that and Cather­ine did that and she ven­tured out some 25 years ago now and I think it was very coura­geous. And I think I did the same thing … look­ing for some­thing else.” SOPHIE: ”Are you sur­prised that you didn’t meet ear­lier? Be­cause, Tina, your story is very sim­i­lar to that, and you’ve been in Paris a long time as well.”

TINA: “I’ve never been in the fash­ion in­dus­try as such. I mean, I know a few peo­ple in there but I’ve never been a great so­cialiser. I don’t know why, maybe it’s a self-preser­va­tion thing. But we have a great time to­gether; we kind of speak the same lan­guage, re­ally.” CATHER­INE: “It’s rare and when we do find those women, it’s fab­u­lous be­cause it is fair and I agree, I think when we so­cialise it just takes so much en­ergy and I un­der­stand that self-preser­va­tion, even though with my work, I do need to get out more.”

TINA: “It’s not about the quan­tity for us, it’s about the qual­ity time that we spend to­gether. As you get older, that’s re­ally where the ap­pre­ci­a­tion lies. We don’t hang out of each other’s pock­ets and so when we do catch up it’s not idle chat­ter, it’s dig­ging through some foun­da­tions and find­ing out what’s been go­ing on and how one’s feel­ing and where you are cre­atively, but also where you are per­son­ally.”

CATHER­INE: “And then we save the world! We some­times have din­ner at Loulou’s with Melissa Ge­orge, and we have lunch in the Marie, near Martin Grant’s.”

TINA: “Ex­actly – a re­ally beau­ti­ful lit­tle bistro in the Marie with re­ally lovely, great, sim­ple and clean food. We caught up there and we spoke about what Cather­ine re­ally wanted to achieve with this shoot.”

CATHER­INE: “And about life and your moment now, which is a full-body chap­ter … how we are in Paris and then Aus­tralia. It’s not that it’s a dou­ble life, but it’s a con­tin­u­ous life, mul­ti­fac­eted, and I think that it’s im­por­tant to be able to have ex­changes where all of that is con­cerned and put a lot of faith aside. But also to cre­ate and to ex­press, and that’s what I re­ally wanted to have in the shoot, to see all the facets of Tina and to cel­e­brate her

Valentino haute cou­ture Maria Luigia or­ganza dress with pas­tel tulle, Lurex and or­ganza anemones ap­pli­ca­tions. Valentino shoes. Her own wed­ding ring.

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