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Thursday, 31 May 2012

My new obsession - Scarf Print

I have already a month or so ago, confessed to being inanely fickle when it comes to all things fashion (truth be known I'm an embarrassingly fickle individual full stop but that's something my friends and family have to endure and the rest of you need merely be thankful you don't know me in real life)

Hence when I pontificated a while back that Print was the devil's work and should be confined to scarves and the odd item of clothing only, clearly I was talking out of my backside.  I do believe though, at the time, I may have rambled on about some vague disclaimer, regarding reserving the right to change my mind like others change their undies.  Et voila.

What I may have alluded to (or if not, I'm sure you've got the gist of), is that once I get a liking for something, I can't just have a little like and then walk away.  Oh no, I've got to overdose on it.  Insane.  But fortunately a) I'm in the middle of nowhere and there is zero shopping opportunity of a fashion variety and b) as delivery is so quick these days, can't really order anything as won't be there to pick it up.  And so I'm using my blog as therapy.  A list of lustness that I would love but shan't be buying (this week anyway) 

I've already featured a couple of things to give you an inkling of my current fashion fetish - the scarf print silk jacket from Zara (now complete with Ribena art - thank you RR3) and the scarf print maxi dress from Oasis which I do love but is just a step too far methinks.

It is everywhere on the high street and higher end (not entirely sure it's something I'd be spending a lot on unless money were no object.  I'm on the fence as to whether it's going to be a one season wonder.) Having said that, the shirts featured at the end would probably be my choice of purchase, as they will definitely see you through to the A/W and I'm all about being able to wear something all year round. 

However in this blog, I am going to devote scarf print in it's entirety to Next.  Not a shop you see me mention very often (great for clothes for RR1 - perfect for that icky age between cute and hooker and can't fault footwear for RRs 2 and 3) but I will admit I've struggled recently with fit and quality.  However, having checked the following out instore, I can say with gusto that they are all pretty impressive and I would happily wear any or all of them (legs depending - yawn yawn) 

And speaking of legs, let's start with the Scarf Print Dress  This is absolutely gorgeous. I just wish it were slightly longer.  As much as I don't get my legs out, were this a couple (ok a couple of couple ie lots) of inches longer - to just somewhere near or below the knee, I would  do something drastic with my legs and buy this in a heartbeat.  A midi length (or hell, I might even go for on the knee) with strappy nude sandals (ie my Zara numbers) this would be perfect for my (yawnarama) wedding in Italy.  However the length it is, on me, I would stand a high chance of getting either arrested or propositioned.  (clearly the former)  Perfect to wear a bra under - not too much flesh showing on top, beautiful rich colours and viscose that doesn't actually make you fear standing too near a naked flame.  Lovely texture.  In fact I'm not going to mention it again as all the scarf print "silks" featured are a decent quality feeling fabric. 

They also do it in a Petite (but not a Tall....grrrrrrrrr errrrrrrrr Next??)

Next (boom boom) another Summer item.  Clearly for those going abroad.  The rest of confined to the UK for the foreseeable future should just accept that we've had Summer and start looking forward to A/W (if I say that enough times it won't come true - Jonah will not strike again - ok?)  This scarf top is just gorgeous.  Casual enough for the day but easily dressy enough for the evening.  I love it.  As a trouser addict, it definitely is on my list of might have to buys.

Again for the Summer, but this time, were I 10 year younger and didn't have boobs I could tuck into my jeans, this would definitely be on my wishlist.  Simply lovely. 

Probably far more age appropriate is the Scarf Print vest.  This would be ideal for a dressier occasion under a blazer or for those who do like some extra coverage during the day.  And absolutely perfect for work - how fabulous to take you from day to night?

Another quick number that would be perfect for a Summer work wardrobe (or A/W with tights - I know I know I'm a stuck record, but I just can't bring myself mostly to buy things you can only wear a couple of months of the year.  Tight.  Wad.  Actually it's more that I will probably go off it in a year so need to get as much wear out of it as possible!) is this skirt.   Again, perfect to wear more casually as well and great to dress up in the evenings with a little loose blouse or shell top.  Gorgeous flattering shape and I love the colours. 

Lastly, my collection of shirts.  These are definitely the top contenders for making it into my wardrobe. 

Blouse in the same pattern as the bandeau top above. Gorgeous with a navy blazer and faded denim skinnies and killer heels. 

However this is my ultimate must have.  Primarily because I think it would look lovely with my nude (ok so they're slightly peach) skinny jeans and an offwhite blazer that I plan on nabbing in the sale from Zara.  Love the colours, absolutely love them.  Not nearly as practical as the one above for all year but ah feck it. I love it.

This is only a smidge of the selection that there is at Next.  Here is a great round up.  Not everything is up my street, can I please point out, but impressively, there is more on that page I would buy than I've seen in Next for the past couple of years - every single Directory put together.  Can't wait to see what they come up with for A/W!

Would love to know what you think of Scarf Print - one trick pony - or a print that's here to stay? 

And now a dismal addition to the album that is the disaster of my holiday wardrobe.  To be fair, this is the best of a bad bunch.  It will all go horribly Pete Tong tomorrow - the forecasters are hedging their bets to say the least but it does seem clear that the weather I start from in Suffolk is completely different to the weather we'll end up with in Kent.  Joy. I've given up caring and will rise like a phoenix from the ashes on Saturday. 

Today though - like I say, didn't feel too bad at all and absolutely loved the blazer.  Even The Husband said he thought it was lovely although did ask who I'd stolen it from as it was colour and he couldn't recall ever seeing me in something so bright.  Cheeky git.

Excuse Annie Leibovitz Junior.  Apparently the photo looked better if she tilted the camera.  "That's what they do mummy".   Remembering the absolutely crap quality of my photographs, who am I to argue? 

Nude vest - Primark
Fuchsia linen t-shirt - Zara
Distressed biker jeans - By Malene Birger
Floral blazer - Zara
Clay Thelmas - Ash
White gold & diamond key pendant - Theo Fennell
Vanilla Roxanne - Mulberry
Sunglasses - Tom Ford

Looking forward to seeing how marmite scarf print is!

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

TOWIE on the farm. Not my finest look.

Ok I'll hold my hands up.  I have had a massive wardrobe malfunction when it comes to holiday packing.  I know, I know, I was waxing lyrical about how pleased I was with what I'd bought with me.  Tool.  Peaked way too early in the week.  

Now of course I'm going to blame the weather, as clearly it can't be my fault.  Yeah right.  I definitely had too much sun last week, as what was I thinking that the weather would last? I've only lived on this godforsaken, weather blighted island for the past 39 years, give or take a year here or there.  As if the wonderful streak of gloriousness was going to last more than a couple of days.  Duh.  Packing, I had banked on it being stunningly warm - check - and then I'd hedged my bets (it's no wonder I'm not allowed within 100 feet of a bookies) and the remainder of clothes were for those "slightly cooler" days. 

Missing from my suitcase was anything for the downright fecking freezing.

Which it was yesterday. We did have a lovely day - went crabbing at Walberswick.  One could have been forgiven for thinking it was February.  Flipflops were the worst idea on the planet.  I literally couldn't feel my toes after 10 minutes.  And then a (very) long lunch at The Anchor (fantastic place).  Quick trip to Snape Maltings where I have made a very long shopping of list of gorgeous housey things (whether or not I get to go back and buy them all is up to how nice I am to The Husband in the next day or two..... am toying with a mummy & RR1 having a trip out early doors tomorrow morning.  Bonding time, you know.)

Anyway, this is what I wore yesterday.  Beyond inappropriate for the weather although one of my fave summer outfits.  Normally worn with massive necklace but not entirely needed for the crabbing part of the day so relented and went small.

Beige vest - By Malene Birger
Leopard print maxi skirt - Zara
Denim jacket - Red Herring at Debenhams.
Faded gold fake havs - Primark
Tan leather & rivet cuff - Mulberry
Gold bee necklace - Alex Monroe
Gold pine cones necklace - NW3 by Hobbs
Vanilla Roxanne - Mulberry
Sunglasses - Tom Ford

As if yesterday wasn't bad enough - dear lord, today was a freaking disaster wardrobe wise.  So listening to the weather forecast (I mean seriously, why oh why oh why do I bother? Right?  Ever?  That'll be no.  Or rarely), today on the East Coast was going to be cold under the clouds, cloudy all day and therefore similar to yesterday - chilly McChilly then.  So we decided to go to Southwold for a spot of shopping (clearly my idea) and a mooch along the pier.  Fish & chips for lunch (placating RR1 the coeliac with a verging on college fund size bribe).  Sorted.  And hence I dressed for the occasion.  We'd be in a town, so not "too" cold, I'd be fine. 

However on starting to drive, the sun suddenly came out of nowhere, the skies turned blue and it again became all too obvious that the aircon in our skip on wheels (aka the car) had failed.  "Let's go to the Farm" decided The Husband.  Greeted by euphoric cries from all three RRs.  (I had obviously done a crap job of persuading them that a spin around the boutiques of Southwold was a great way to spend a day.  Bugger) 

Hence, we arrived at the Farm (Easton Park Farm in Easton, nr Woodbridge, which I cannot recommend highly enough.  In the right attire clearly.  Fantastic place).  And I looked like a complete tit. 

So originally dressed for shopping - tick.  Ended up on the farm - TOWIEtastic. 

All feel free to guffaw at my expense.  I deserve it.  And I'm still blaming the weather......

And here, as a special treat, to show what an utter tool I looked in situ.

Light beige vest - Primark
White linen t-shirt - Zara
Distressed faded skinny jeans - Zara
Scarf print jacket - Zara
Clay Thelma wedges - Ash
Gold bee necklace - Alex Monroe
Gold pine cones necklace - NW3 by Hobbs
Tan leather & rivet cuff - Mulberry
Vanilla Roxanne - Mulberry
Hessian bag - Sainsburys
Sunglasses - Tom Ford

And tomorrow it's supposed to be raining.  The hilarity of my outfits will continue as I have absolutely nothing that is remotely wet weather appropriate.  I may send The Husband out early doors to get an umbrella (actually balls to that, I'll take RR1 out on the pretence of getting an umbrella and we'll sneak to Snape Maltings for some retail therapy. I haven't bought an iota online or instore for nearly a week.  I'm having withdrawal symptoms).

I haven't really been surfing online - faint, shock horror, wtf? I hear you cry. I have been Reading A Book.  One with pages and small words and everything.  The Brethren by John Grisham.  Clearly not a book of the cerebral variety but I'm loving it and it's that long since I've read something that doesn't have pictures (ie a magazine) that I haven't been able to put it down. 

I did however clearly have a sneaky peak at what's new at Zara.  No shit sherlock.  I honestly should get paid dividends by Zara no?  Unfortunately they are even more inept at social media than me.  Although as I am clearly an unpaid extension of their PR arm, it doesn't really matter I guess.  

Anyway, this skirt is just beyond gorgeous.  I will admit that I "might" have tried to order it but it's OOS although apparently coming back in.   The final nail in my summer wardrobe coffin and I shall now be thinking about A/W.  Beyond excited. 

Will report back on how much of a tosser I look tomorrow. xxxxx

Monday, 28 May 2012

Quickly, whilst the sun is still shining.

Let's just have a maxi dress round up.  Now I'm a huge fan of maxi dresses, despite being ridiculously tall and therefore only 5% of them actually fit me.  So many people have said to me over the years, that you can only wear a maxi dress if you're tall.  Oh what a crock of balls.  Not true in a million years!  You only have to look at Nicole RIchie, Rachel Zoe and The Olsen Twins - all of whom are of a more diminutive stature and rock a maxi. 

I would say, in fact, it's probably easier.  You can have your pick of maxi dresses as you can have them shortened.  For us Jolly Green G's out there, you can't add fabric.  Although I've always toyed with the idea of teaming up with a shortie - sorry, petite person (be as rude as you like back - it's nothing we Gullivers haven't heard growing up - "ooh is it snowing up there?"  Oh how we laughed) - and having an extra tier to my dress from theirs......There may well be milage in that.

If you are more petite then I would probably avoid the more voluminous maxi - I don't think acres of fabric are particularly flattering to a tinier frame - and add some super sturdy wedges.  Personally I would avoid a thin heel at all costs and only wear a wedge or chunkytastic sandal.   

I love them, as basically they cover my legs.  I can't stand my legs.  Cased in opaque - hell yes, I'll wear a skirt that just about makes me decent, - glorified belt anyone? -  but naked?  Not in a million years.  I am sure I'll look back when I'm 70 and think what on earth was I faffing on about, but to be honest, I remember back to when I was 17 and I was Inter-railing, armed with a Revlon Sun Screen that also had fake tan in it (the first of it's kind prior to a Clarins one they bought out.  We are talking. ahem, some time ago).  I took 4 tubes with me - my holy grail tanning product of the time (there weren't many around then)  And I distinctly remember the pasty whiteness of my legs, the poremarks from whichever hair removal method I tried (I have tried them all - I still get hideous poremarks), the slight doughiness to them.  They weren't great.  I do look back and think I was thin as a bloody thin thing and I thought I was on the large side.  Oh yes, I want to slap my 17 year old face into eating lots but no, I still maintain that I have always had mingtastic legs. 

Therefore I welcomed with open arms (and very very grateful legs) the advent of the Maxi a number of years ago.  The answer to a less sweaty crotch.  What's not to love for those of us who would rather not bare our legs to the public (or to myself - I wince when I catch sight of mine unless they are fake tanned within an inch of their lives and that is just too much effort on a day to day basis)

I have gathered a couple over the years, they actually have turned out to be a great investment.  Some jersey ones from Cos (which are a bugger to wash as they shrink every time and much stretching attention- like making fecking pastry - has to be given regularly whilst they dry), a wonderful tobacco one from Reiss last year, an old faithful navy and white chevron one from Isabella Oliver and a cheeky bargain camel and navy striped one from New Look last year. 

This year though, as I've already raved about, I am over the moon with my scarf print dress from Dorothy Perkins.  I fear it has already sold out in the Tall and is only left in a size 18 online.  However I have seen it instore in other sizes (not Tall though)  But this Butterfly dress from Dorothy Perkins  would definitely get my vote if they did it long enough for me.  I love the way it has extra coverage up top and is (broken record alert) great to dress up or dress down.  If you're of normal height (and they do it in petite as well!) then definitely check it out.  I've seen someone out and about in it and it looked just gorgeous. 

So a round up of other maxis that have caught my eye.  Apologies in advance, as by blogging about summer dresses, I have rung the death knell for summer and it will now pour with rain till August.  I will crack on with A/W preview stuff shortly to try and redeem myself and give us one last shot at a summer. 

Keeping at the more affordable end of the scale, I would definitely be trying this Stripe Maxi dress from Next if they did it in a longer length.

Great for those (admittedly random) really hot days when it is just impossible to know what to wear.  This would work a treat - jersey, so no creasing issues, not clingy round the stomach, no sweaty boobs, a fab dress to have in your wardrobe and to take on hols.  Knock yourselves out the rest of you, I'll look on with envy.

Slightly more expensive is this stripe maxi dress with belt from Mango at ASOS  I love the colours, more unusual but still a classic stripe.  Love the looseness of it yet still clinched in at the waist (but not with a big sweaty belt) so flattering as well.  In my experience, Mango maxi dresses come up very very long ie at 5ft10 they fit me.  But of course if you're shorter, you can easily take it up.  (gits)

The next is a slightly random addition from me - maybe I've had too much sun - but I do really love it.  I am having a scary love affair (from afar mostly bar one Zara jacket that I have come clean about) with scarf print and so this fits neatly into my box of things to lust after.  Oasis lengthwise are completely hit and miss - some are long, some are short.  Go figure.  I may watch for in the sale or, if the weather continues to be amazing (fat chance), I may have to succumb.  The Oasis Scarf Print Maxi Dress

Actually with hindsight, it would look like a sack of poo on my non existent boobage so I'll pass, but I love the colour and the print and the handkerchief hem.  Just more unusual than the deluge of floral numbers that are out there. 

Moving slightly up the pound and shillings scale, we have another striped number from Denim & Supply by Ralph Lauren at Coggles  You'd have this for absolutely years.  A complete classic, the empire line makes it much more flattering with less cleavage on show (although to be fair, not the best if you need a bra - best for us bee sting booby girls) and the fuller skirt means you can go to a BBQ and not hold back on the portions.  I don't think that bad for £80 as I'm assuming the quality is excellent (I have no knowledge of this - am being totally swayed by the fact it's RL which normally is pretty good stuff)

I have a wedding to go to in Italy in August and I'm thinking this could easily be a contender.  I love the colour (even though it is so not me in the slightest), I'm ignoring the slightly TOWIE edge to the straps at the front, as to focus on how much I like it disturbs me somewhat.  I just think it's gorgeous.  Only gripe, yawn, yawn, is it long enough?

Lastly, if money were no object then the Abondance leopard silk dress from By Malene Birger would be mine.  Utterly divine in every way.  Practical in absolutely none.  Happily it is so hideously far out of my budget that it's not an issue I have to contend with.

Finishing with a last minute round up of what I've been wearing the last two days.  Photos have been taken and selected by RR1, who, at the age of 7, is quite fancying herself as the next Annie Leibovitz.  She does keep muttering something about the poor quality of the tools she has to work with (I'm not sure if she means me or the new iphone) but a quick threat of an icecream withdrawal puts her in check.  Just can't get the staff these days. 

Yesterday for a fantastic day at the Flavours of 2012, food and drink festival at Henham Park in Suffolk - no maxi dress due to long grass - maxi dress related nightmare.  We all had the most amazing day and I am still stuffed to the gills.

Cream linen and crocheted top - By Malene Birger
White skinny jeans - Next
Cream bone and shell necklace - By Malene Birger
Dull gold Hav rip offs - Primark
Vanilla Roxanne - Mulberry

And today for a day on the beach with the kids, followed by an afternoon boating on the Meare at Thorpeness.  Much ice-cream was consumed all day. 

Black vest - Primark
Black oversized jersey top with nude sleeves - Cos
Faded straight leg jeans rolled up - Earl (these are now 7 years old.  Do Earl jeans still exist?!)
Silver Hav rip offs - Primark
Hessian sack bag - Sainsburys (meant for a reusable shopping bag - best beach bag I've ever had.  And for £2.50)
Sunglasses - Tom Ford

RIght off for another small (ish) glass of Prosecco and hoping (valiantly) for more sunshine tomorrow. xxxx

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Steady on - a photo with a face.

I will admit that this is for no other reason than the full length mirror in the place we're staying means I have to sort of wedge myself between the bed and the chest of drawers to even attempt to take a photograph.  "Why would that matter, considering the absolute piss poor photos you normally whack up?", I hear you cry. 

Well, if it can actually be believed, it made for an even worse photo.  Plus, RR1 was literally beside herself at being asked to take the photo.  I kid you not, at bedtime, she said it was the highlight of her day.  Which obviously made me feel like the worst parent on the planet - first day of holiday and taking a photo of her mother was the best bit.  Fail.

Tomorrow though we're off to a food festival and as she's a complete mini foodie (despite being a Coeliac, bless her - sorry - PC alert, we have to say suffering from Coeliac disease rather than "labelling" her as a Coeliac.  She still says she's a Coeliac as, she intelligently told me "errr, that's what I am, mum").  So hopefully it will trump her Mario Testino moment from today. 

A quick round up - a number of people have asked for an update on what to wear in this weather.  This week will hopefully be an indicator of how I cope (I'm not great in the heat, it does have to be said - half Irish, need add no more) and I will try and bung a pic up every day. 

White silk double layer top - Taylor Stevens (local company who do clothes parties - some great bits.  Email me for more details.)
Bleached distressed skinny jeans - Zara (these are looking a tad tatty - might need a repair job soon but I love the fit) 
Dull gold Hav rip offs - Primark
Gold bee necklace - Alex Monroe
Gold charm necklace - Made
Vanilla Roxanne - Mulberry
Sunglasses - Tom Ford

Now a very cheeky Lust of the Day - one which I cunningly have bought as I believe it's already sold out in a number of Zaras.  An utterly bargainous £49.99 jersey blazer.  I know I sound like a stuck record but this honestly is the ultimate dress up dress down piece.  I shoved it on later this afternoon to take the kids to the boating pond.  And yet my friend has bought it for a wedding and a number of other dressy affairs.  I have a wedding to go to in Italy (outfit dilemma to follow) and this is definitely a contender if I don't trash the life out of it before then.  Beautiful soft fabric, doesn't crease at all (hung it straight out of my suitcase and it was good to go - LOVE clothes like that), fitted yet casual at the same time.  And goes with pretty much everything.  Possibly my favourite buy of the season.  (I reserve the right to completely go back on that last statement.  I may have more than a smidge of red wine this evening......)  I do however promise it looks a lot lot better in real life than it does in the pic.

Ok there must be more wine to drink and football to watch (I am a sad football fan.  I'll get my coat)

See you tomorrow and have fun in the sun!


Friday, 25 May 2012

Ok hands up. Who's seriously sweaty?

Now I'm not complaining.  No way, not in a million years, as I am loving being able to not wear trousers and have a bona fide reason (not to get my legs out - hell no, I have to be at least the one speaking the foreign language before they are bared to the public - preferably a public who are a 12 hour flight away from home) to wear flip flops and.... hold the press...... a dress!

It's true, I am actually sometimes seen roaming in something that isn't a pair of trousers.  However in typical UK weather fashion, we have gone from the sublime to the ridiculous.  How chuffing hot?  To be fair, I could normally cope adequately with the heat.  It's not rocket science, either sit in the shade or stay indoors.  But, in my infinite wisdom, I thought it would be a really good idea, on the hottest day of the year so far (Wednesday) to have a quick dash to London.  Obviously last minute holiday shopping for the (least) exotic holiday on the planet. (spending my saved pennies from not having the annual Boots lobotomy as mentioned on Tuesday - oh any excuse).  I also had to unfortunately return my nude leather Cos bag as it the strap had come apart.  I came away with a white vest from there. Not the most exciting purchase on the planet.  I fear it is quite see through - a smash and grab purchase - I will report back on it.  Another chapter in the eternal quest for the perfect set of basics. 

Let's just say it was warm.  Seriously seriously warm.  As if the heat wasn't torture enough in itself, as a complete glutton for punishment, I thought a trip to Oxford Street Primark would be a good idea.  A lovely twitter person (what do you call a fellow twitterer?  If anyone fancies following me, by the way - @doesmybumlook40 - twitter icon thingy soon to be added to site) had let me know that the tan leopard print skinnies from Primark were now down to £6.  Obviously they were sold out (no shit sherlock) but undeterred (with hindsight I'm thinking probably too much sun) I braved the inner depths of Primark and came out with:- 3 new bras (clearly dull as dishwater plain t-shirt bras perfect for fried egg boobs but at £9.60 for all 3, I'm happy as a pig in poo), 4 more vests (one black, one white, two nude) two pairs of ballet flats (left at home, will pap when I get back but seriously chuffed with them), flipflops for RR1 (she's over the moon and they were £1 a pair. ONE POUND!!  Easily as good as Gap ones) and another pair of the Hav rip offs for me.  Again £1.  If you haven't tried them and aren't fussed about your flipflops saying Havaianas on them, then I urge you to try these.  I've yet to see how long these last but my Havs have never lasted more than a year without breaking so I'll report back on the success of these.  Comfort wise, absolutely no complaints.  I also have a pair from George at Asda which are identical but these are a (comparatively extortionate) £2.50.  The cheek.

Just how sweat-tastic the experience was - I went to Selfridges and bought..... coffee.  Didn't even make it to the second floor or the bag hall.  Straight to the basement for coffee pods and back out.  Says it all.  Too hot for shopping.

Scarf print dress - Dorothy Perkins
Silver Hav rip offs - George at Asda
Chestnut battered cross body bag - Campomaggi by Plumo
Sweat - model's own (I'll fess up - this was taken before I left.  Pics would have been minging had I done it when I got back.  Check out my hair on Thursday - below.  An indication of how "warm" I might have been.....)

Thursday wasn't much better.  The day started with promise but then I was unfortunately a witness to a car/motorbike accident (no-one seriously hurt thank goodness but a number of battered vehicles and a lot of very shaken up people, me included) and an hour and a half of standing in the sun waiting for police/ambulance and the taking of statements etc, left me yet again, sweating like a navvy.

Hence my quick change into a beach dress just to take the kids swimming and for a picnic (with a cheeky spritzer for the grown ups - purely to calm my nerves you understand) 

Beige vest - By Malene Birger
Leopard print skirt - Zara
Mink petal cropped jacket - Warehouse
Bone (plastic!) and shell necklace - By Malene Birger
Matt gold Hav rip offs - Primark
Chestnut cross body bag - Campomaggi by Plumo

Charcoal beach dress - Primark
Silver Hav rip offs - George at Asda
Gold filigree earrings - Etsy

Today later in the afternoon we set off for holiday.  Huzzah!!!  All packed first thing - I will do a low down on my holiday packing.  Even The Husband was quite impressed.  "polish halo"  Of course what he doesn't realise is that my cunning plan is that if the weather changes, I'll just have to go shopping.  Obviously.

Now today wasn't supposed to be so warm.  Hell on earth knows why I take an iota of notice of the weather forecast.  I actually had a different outfit on first thing for last minute chores (whilst The Husband packed the car) in town (returning parcels to the Post Office, truth be known. Oh and coffee with one of my best friends - urgent urgent business obviously)  And was so hot, came home and changed.  

With hindsight I would have just worn pants and a bra as halfway round the M25, our aircon packed up.  Dear.  Lord.  Hello the 70's.  When was the last time anyone had their windows open on the motorway?  Yup that would have been the 70's.  Instant facelift.  The kids were all howling as it was either too hot, too windy or too noisy.  The Husband looked like he was driving in a sauna.  I've never seen a human sweat so much sat down doing nothing.  But we arrived (obligatory Burger King at the Ipswich roundabout) in one piece, a couple of lbs lighter each.  And it's heaven.  Forecast looks great, view of the sea is sublime, am on glass of wine number 3, olives stuffed with sundried tomatoes and feta on the go (not together by the way.  From the Co-op - definitely worth tracking down - delish), what on earth is not to love?

And and and, I wore my new Ash wedges today (interestingly my feet weren't actually hot. I think they probably knew better than to complain) I settled for the Thelmas in Clay and I completely love them.  Yes they're marmite.  I asked The Husband if he liked them and he looked at me as I was certifiable and muttered "err No".  But I am in love.  And could easily have kept the Camel ones as well.  The colour of them is gorgeous.   The Perkish never arrived - sent separately - and as I've decided to keep the Clay ones, I've cancelled the order.  I am destined never to know the true colour of Perkish.  I'll probably live. 

So outfit number one of holiday 

White vest - Primark
Natural rectangle linen jumper - The White Company
Floral skinnies - Primark
Tan rivet stud cuff - Mulberry
Silver bead and heart bracelet - Local boutique (now shut)
White gold and diamond key pendant - Theo Fennell 
Clay Thelma wedge trainers - Ash
Vanilla Roxanne - Mulberry

And a very last min Lust of the Day.  Well.  It was a Lust of the Day.  They only had it in small sizes and I thought it needed to be more oversized on me (probably didn't but I feel, as a tall person that if something is supposed to be baggy - which I think this is - then unless it's properly baggy, it just looks too small for you and makes you look even more giant than normal) otherwise I would probably have stretched myself to buy it.  I love it.  I completely love it.  I often struggle (ok when I say struggle that's clearly a crock of shit but I don't find it as easy, let's just say) to find things in my wardrobe that are great for casual/dress down but not scabby, look.  It's from Anthropologie by the way (not online though)  And not cheap.  Otherwise I would have buggered my "you look like Gulliver's wife" theory and just bought it but at £115 it had to be perfect. 

Actually I should say I did love it.  I showed the picture to The Husband and asked didn't he think it was gorgeous.  (told you the sun had gone to my head - what on earth was I thinking?  Asking his opinion.  Doh.) "yes, it's lovely if you're going to a fancy dress party as Where's Wally." 

I give up. 

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Don't thank me all at once.

I know I've mentioned before, in a rather theatrical way (The Husband despairs - doubly so as RR1 is displaying similar traits), that I am a complete Jonah.  Well, as if I needed more proof, here we all are, basking in tropical temperatures.  My car (admittedly a glorified shed on wheels and probably not the most accurate barometer) earlier said 36 degrees on the dashboard.  It does have a habit of being entirely incorrect when having been sat in direct sunlight for four hours, but on moving, it did stick at 27 degrees.  Summer has finally arrived. 

And that will be because I finally got round to ordering some Ash wedge trainers.  Just the sort of footwear you need in these sort of temperatures.  A fully enclosed leather shoe.  I'm sweating just thinking about them.  I didn't buy sandals which would have been a complete curse on any hint of sunshine, but no.  I am awaiting the arrival of new boots.  Hence - heatwave.  You are all most welcome.

Now slight admission - as per usual,  I couldn't just have ordered one pair.  Oh no, don't be daft, that's what normal people do. I'm odd. I ordered 3 pairs - just to be on the safe side (I will only keep one, I absolutely promise)  So it's a choice between these three beauties.  Ok before I do the pics, just a bit of typical DMBL40IT justification - you're surely used to it by now. We are going away on hols next week.  To Suffolk. Which genuinely I am looking forward to as much as if we were going to the Maldives. (we go every year, to the same place and I wouldn't change it for the world)  Principally as it's a 2.5 hour journey to the sofa (and wine) in Suffolk, whereas with slightly further afield (ie involving a plane) by that time, we would just about be checking in.  And the RRs (and definitely The Husband) would be beginning meltdown central.  It also would involve a last minute Million Pound Drop in Boots.  PIcking up more suncream than the entire hotel would use (damn those blasted 3 for 2's), ditto mossie spray and all other "essentials" that I out of the blue, deem completely necessary.  It's as if I have a lobotomy the moment I blow the dust off my passport.  Whereas all we need for Suffolk is a family pack of Paracetamol for The Husband and I. (there is a quite fabulous wine shop where we go.....) The remainder of said usually wasted Boots money, I am now completely justified in spending on other boots.  Of the beautiful, wearable kind.

Justification over, these are what I have coming.  So which do you think I should go for?

Ash Thelma in Clay

Ash Thelma in Camel
Ash Genial in Perkish (I did actually want these in clay but couldn't find them anywhere - I'd love to know what sort of colour "perkish" is.  Well clearly it's a pooey sort of beige colour....)

I ummed and ahhed for ages over the Thelmas or the Beas.  To be honest (embarrassing practical stance coming up) the suede aspect of the Beas and my massively slovenly approach to, errrr, life in general would mean they would be trashed within a matter of weeks. I am very much looking forward to the Ash A/W collection though - I can only imagine that there will be some complete champions there. I did order (and send back) the Birdie in Camel leather last year as I couldn't quite get to grips with the white sole, but I'm thinking as they're far more ubiquitous this time round, it won't bother me nearly as much. 

The other option was the gorgeous coral and camel (leather and suede combo) Beas but as I  "may" have bought a floral Zara jersey jacket (it's still in the bag - it may or may not be a wedding outfit contender, hence I'm not mentioning it here officially yet which means it's not officially mine) and the pale simple colour will go much better with this and my other floral jeans.  

Personally I think I'm leaning towards the Thelmas in Clay.  Any thoughts?  I will report back on the results. 

Now a quick round up of what I've been wearing in this totally random weather. 

Starting last Friday night, when we had friends round for dinner 

Nude vest - Primark
Blush sheer rectangle ribbed top - Cos
White skinny jeans - Next
Gold & blush large earrings - Monsoon
Tan fretwork wedges - Sam Edelman

Saturday - usual round of taxi service in the morning.  In the afternoon, I did actually change into trackie bums and old sweats and we did clear the garage.  Rock & roll.  And speaking of rock & roll, in the evening we went to an Elvis night. (second outfit - this is not what my warped version of a tracksuit is)  Where we were the youngest people by about 30 years.  But I haven't laughed as much in years, great evening which ended up back at our friends house, dancing like loons and drinking Bacardi till the wee small hours.  Happy days. 

Black & off white jumper dress - Joseph
Raspberry Leigh jeans - Topshop
Camel knitted blazer - Whistles
Leopard print scarf - Louis Vuitton
Black suede ankle boots - Pied a Terre
Cheetah print suede bag - Zara

Black crepe shell top - Zara
Black tuxedo style blazer - Topshop
Navy/black/camel leopard print ankle zip trousers - Whistles
Black corsage necklace - Sportsmax (I'll do a close up of this another day as the photo of black against black doesn't do it justice)
Black ankle strap sandals - Zara
Tan De Manta clutch - Alexander McQueen

Sunday morning, 9am start for a bowling party for RR2.  He absolutely loved it, they all loved it and it was a great party.  From a hungover adult's perspective it was rather (very) loud and rather (very) crowded.  But they were superbly behaved, I did manage to sneak out for coffee and juice and I was then able to spend the rest of the day on the sofa.  Bliss. 

White silk edged shirt - H&M
Indigo Baxter jeans - Topshop
Chocolate leather jacket - All Saints
Jubilee scarf - Scarf Envy
Tan leather & rivet cuff - Mulberry
Tan rockafella boots - Russell & Bromley
Chestnut cross body bag - Campomaggi by Plumo

I have a confession to make about yesterday's outfit.  I upgraded my iphone yesterday, took a photo and then today attempted to synch all the "stuff" on my old iphone onto my new one. Massive fail. I managed to synch some of it whilst completely cocking up everything they'd already set up in the shop and somehow delete all the photos I took.  A technical genius I am not. But whilst we're on the subject of IT prowess or the lack of it, I am reliably informed that it is now super easy for anyone to comment on each post.  Please be kind...... (!)

So zero outfit from yesterday - shame as it was one I really liked but I will definitely be repeating it as soon as the temperature dips slightly. 

And finally today for The Summer.  I did start initially in another outfit, nearly boiled myself alive and so changed for taking the kids swimming and basking in the sunshine after school. Looking forward to more of the same tomorrow. 

Cream drapey jersey top - H&M
Faded straight leg jeans - Zara
Tobacco drape front cardigan - Day Birger et Mikkeslon
Chestnut peep toe Saxon boots - Kurt Geiger
Bone and shell necklace - By Malene Birger
Tan shopper - Zara

Thanks again for all your lovely emails and comments - I am getting round to replying to them all! xxxxx

Friday, 18 May 2012

Throwing the towel in, I'm scarf shopping.

As it was a cheaper option than buying a new pair of wedge trainers, which I am genuinely teetering on the edge of purchasing.  I have completely come round to the school of thought that I shall get a pair (I already have the Madonna stud wedge trainers by Ash and love them) it's just  deciding which sort and finding the funds. Of course it would make sense to stop buying lots of little things and just save up and buy one thing.  Well, yes, that would be ridiculously obvious but Sensible and I simply don't inhabit the same planet.

There seems to be absolutely zero point in buying anything remotely summery as frankly, it's freezing.  Hence I am now the owner of a beautiful new scarf.  Found this lovely website Scarf Envy  Really reasonable, beautiful quality scarves, not of horse blanket size (of which I will admit usually I am a fan) but of a much more useable size for this weather. 

It was a toss up between the Olive star print scarf which would have fitted perfectly with my wardrobe and in fact, as I wore my By Malene Birger khaki scarf on Sunday, I did think I could do with something slightly lighterweight for this new variation of a Summer that we're having.  I thought it would go really well with the cream/blush/apricot tones I seem to have gathered together.  Also would look great with my floral jeans... oh balls, I may well be just talking myself into buying another one. 

The one I did go for though, was - in an attempt to muster up some interest in the impending Jubilee celebrations, can you tell I'm not chomping at the bit with excitement? - the Jubilee Scarf.  Here is a pic of mine 

I love love love it.  Completely different to any scarf I already have and fills a great red/navy/black scarf hole in my wardrobe.  The majority of my scarves are on the darker, heavier side but, as I've mentioned, finding something to be able to wear in this weather is just great.  But not a silky scarf.  I can't do silky scarves without looking as if I'm going to break into "Doors to Manual" any minute.  Pure and utter air stewardess.  P'raps not.  

I wore it yesterday and was over the moon with it.  Gorgeous colours, great quality and RR1 thinks it's fantastic that I'm finally getting into the groove of the Jubilee.  Oh and great service as well.  I believe it's a business run from home so patriotic tick two for the day in being able to support an up and coming UK business.  And I believe the scarves are all British too.  What's not to love?  Anyone into scarves and feeling a bit chilly round the neck (isn't it impossible not to right now?) should go and have a look.  I am also going to be doing a scarf tutorial on here shortly - something I've had numerous emails about.  What this space!

So a quick round up of what I've been sporting the last couple of days. 

Wednesday for my big day out with the girls.  What a fabulous day. But can you believe, no shopping?   We did manage to stagger into a couple of shops but really the whole day was about catching up.  Which is code for loads of high octane banter (ie "only dogs can hear you now") fuelled by rather too much champagne.  Pure bliss.  This photo is taken at the end of the (very long) day.  Please do excuse my rather bedraggled state. I promise the the outfit did look far less lived in for the majority of the day.

Cream (or unicorn or pavlova according to FCUK....) cowl neck jersey top - FCUK
Navy/black/camel leopard print cropped trousers - Whistles
Navy blazer- Zara
Cream "bone" (ie plastic) and shell necklace - By Malene Birger
Tan leather & rivet cuff - Mulberry
Tan fretwork wedges - Sam Edelman
Tan shopper - Cos

Thursday - Admittedly I didn't feel Great.  Of course, it was nothing at all to do with the fact I may have overindulged slightly on a school day/night, but because I was very very tired.  Yeah right.  Well a relaxed day doing chores with RR3 and then an obligatory trip to McDonalds for tea with RRs 2 and 3 as RR1 was on a playdate and this was a treat for them.   And I may have devoured a Big Mac Meal (made large) with an apple pie.  Just to keep them company of course.....

White tee - Isabella Oliver
Indigo Baxters - Topshop
Navy jersey blazer - Monsoon
Tan leather belt - Primark
Jubilee Scarf - Scarf Envy (so so pleased with how it looks!)
Gunmetal Hi-tops - Ash
Chestnut battered cross body bag - Campomaggi from Plumo

Friday - Today this is the most casual I get (bar a tracksuit which equals pure slobdom and a not leaving the house day).  We had a skip delivered this morning as I am going to clear out our garage and reclaim it as a games room for the kids. (It's half garage, half junk room but should be useable space. My excuse for not having cleared it, is that it's detached from the house and so the kids couldn't use it as they were too small and I needed to be near them) Now however, I really don't need to be them.  In fact, it's infinitely preferable to not be near them.  The lure of not having to listen to Jake & the Neverland Pirates/I Carly/Victorious/Spongebob at full volume has persuaded me that the misery of clearing it out will be worth it.  There is light at the end of the tunnel.  Unfortunately the skip that's been delivered is less skip like and more small sandpit size..... Clearly some people's definition of "a lot of junk" and mine is rather different.  WIll worry about that tomorrow.  Wish me luck.  Am going on the adage that, if we haven't opened a box in five and a half years, it really can't be that important and can be binned.

So here I am in my massively practical garage clearing outfit.  And I will admit I haven't done a bean yet.  But I am having friends for dinner so have been cooking all day instead.  Steak chilli with chocolate and chorizo, followed by summer berry pavlova and cheese (not together by the way)  And of course I simply had to blog.  Wearing my Procrastination tiara.  

Nude vest - Primark
Natural rectangle linen jumper - The White Company 
White skinny jeans - Next
Gunmetal hi-tops - Ash
Gold bee necklace - Alex Monroe
Cheetah print ponyskin bag - Zara

Unfortunately I seem to have it too late to do any junking today. Oops......

As an aside, a number of people have been emailing me to say they find it very difficult to comment on my blog.  I am looking into it but in the meantime, if anyone does have any idea of how to make it easier for people to do so without having to create an account themselves (I believe that seems to be the problem), I'd be very grateful if they could let me know. 

And please do continue to contact me on if you can't/would prefer not to comment on here. I am getting round to all the replies!