It's Oscar season again. I fondly remember the days when I used to stay up on a Sunday night and watch it all (well the Red Carpet anyway, which to me was, and is, always the best bit). Now even with sellotape on the eyelids to keep them open, by midnight I am in bed snoring with the best of them. Cinderella would be gutted.
I also remember looking at the jewellery and thinking holy hell, when would one ever wear that?
Well, welcome to middle age! There have to be some advantages to go along with the wrinkles, lumps, bumps and grey hairs and I've come to the conclusion that statement jewellery is definitely something that's a positive.
Can't quite work out whether it's jewellery fashion that's changed, whether I've got more confident in my wardrobe or it's my taste that's different, but the older I get, the bigger it gets. And the more expensive it gets but it doesn't necessarily have to be so.
Let's talk evening first. Another positive about moving towards the twilight years, is that people (obviously meaning women) do seem to get more dressed up. A number of years ago, a night out would primarily have entailed a hop skip and a jump from work to bars 1, 2 and then 3, maybe some food (ie chips or something else deep fried on a platter) but definitely just wearing work clothes.
Since having kids though and giving up the paid day job and taking on the 24/7 unpaid one (did anyone else not ask for the job description by the way? Error), a night out is like a beacon in the fog. Any excuse to down tools, walk/run away from the mayhem and feel again like a valued (if drunk by the end of the evening) member of society.
Listening to proper music, not the dulcet tones of Bob the Builder, Fireman Sam or (the disturbingly catchy) Rastamouse. Eating proper grown up crisps and nuts, not having to sneak Pom Bears (barf) or Hula Hoops from your children to their screams of "they're mine" (just me?). God forbid, a proper meal without having to share any food with your kids.
So a treat of that magnitude deserves a decent outfit. But at the same time, do I really want to spend a small fortune at Whistles, Reiss, By Malene Birger or even Zara for a dress that I'll only wear a couple of times? This is the bit where The Husband glazes over as he has no idea why I could only wear it a couple of times.
Let me explain. I live, work and breathe within a tiny community. Where everyone knows each other. Which, I would think, is pretty standard amongst most mums who stay at home to look after their kids. I reckon that the age of your kids is pretty much the distance in miles of how far you travel away from your home most weeks. (it does get much better the older they get) And therefore when you go out, invariably it's with the same couple of groups of people. As much as you might love Dress A, you know that you need something new to wear on a night out, when the taxi firm ask you on the phone if he's picking up the lady in the khaki print dress again....
There are only so many times you can wear the same outfit with the same people.
Ok so I could go and buy 5 dresses but I don't really want 5 dress sat in my wardrobe that I've grown sick of the sight of (clearly I do do that. Everyone does that, but we'll gloss over that minute fact)
Which brings me to the joy of statement jewellery. Pared down clothes. Good quality plain dresses, skinny jeans and trousers, a variety of tops for all seasons in neutral colours, ditto jackets. Ones that you can wear at night and during the day. Heels. (I'm a firm believer in heels on a night out and can't be persuaded otherwise. Not without a drink anyway. Actually bar a maxi dress in the summer.....)
And you can go to town on the jewellery. Necklaces, earrings, bracelets and cuffs. In my book they must be big. Preferably not worn altogether mind. Either or (like boobs or legs)
Last year I invested in a great selection. Sportsmax, Jaeger, Anthropologie, By Malene Birger and Made all coming up trumps for necklaces.
It was in fact the necklaces I found easiest to wear. Maybe it is my obsession with scarves, maybe it's because my decolletage (seriously? I can't believe I used that word) is starting to get that leathery old lady look (ok so it's not that bad but it's not what it used to be), maybe it's back to the age/confidence/taste/style thingy but I started wearing them during the day.
They were the perfect way to dress up a distressed pair of jeans, toe post flat sandals, plain t-shirt and a little blazer or cardigan. Without it, quite dull, mummy uniform, but with an interesting piece of jewellery, it gave the outfit new life. It also meant I could just get away with a good selection of plainer clothes but had a whole array of outfits just by interchanging with different jewellery (and shoes, but that's a whole other blog!)
Didn't matter if it was a dressier evening piece. Being older, it looked right, without looking like you'd raided your mum's jewellery case.
With the Oscars this weekend and the sun today, it was the perfect time to have a look at what was on offer this year. And there are some beauties about.
Firstly you don't have to spend a fortune. Following my success at Dotty P's I had a quick look at New Look today and came across this very pretty disc and rope necklace
Which is probably a great starter size if you're not used to wearing anything too big or too elaborate (I've graduated to full on Pat Butcher status)
And this one too. At £5.99 and £6.99 respectively (and apparently they're on buy one get one free!) they certainly aren't going to break the bank. I have no idea what the quality is like but I'm thinking they're probably not going to last forever and wouldn't advise going near a grabby toddler with them on. However they're perfect for Spring/Summer for either day or a casual night out) Lots of other options for fantastic prices to suit all tastes on the New Look website.
Another place where there are bargains to be had, admittedly in a different price league, is The Outnet. I came across these Isharya earrings
I just adore Marni jewellery though and can't wait for next week for the launch of Marni at H&M. Can't believe I'm typing this but I am vaguely considering going along and queuing on the launch day. Plus I will have a 3 year old with me. Hmmmm been typing for too long. Brain clearly fried.
Nearly finished. On to my runner up and winner of Lust of the Day.
Firstly, By Malene Birger. I could happily wear all of her jewellery all of the time. This cuff is such a thing of beauty. Only reason it doesn't make Lust of the Day is that I find necklaces easier to wear. However do feel free to drool appreciatively.
And finally, a place where I can nearly always find something that I Must have. The wonderful Anthropologie. A necklace which will fit perfectly into my wardrobe. I just love everything about it and am tempted to get it in the green version as well. My Lust of The Day
And now I really need to put the kids to bed. Won't be winning Mother of The Year any time soon, as I've just looked up, it's dark and they're still playing in the garden. Oops.