So I think we can finally confirm that Summer has arrived. As I said yesterday, the heatwave is on the way and so it's all hands to the Summer Wardrobe deck.
And I will say that my two main accessories that are non negotiable and total Must Haves are a hat and sunglasses. Today it's all about the hats.
I had a lovely comment yesterday saying I'd nailed Summer in my top and shorts. Well I have to say, I'm not so convinced that the outfit as a whole would have worked remotely as well without my hat. And I would say the same about the outfit I wore on Friday - a very billy basic outfit of jersey tee and cargos but the hat completes it and just makes it that little bit more interesting.
Not only does it help finish an outfit, it's also hugely practical. It keeps the sun off your head and hair but more importantly, off your face. As much as I love a freckle, I love wrinkles less and so I've taken to lathering on the fake tan and protecting my face from the sun.
Like the tops from yesterday, I've also found them to be a timeless addition to your Summer wardrobe. I currently have two and they both create very different looks. One is definitely more boho and the other is a little more polished and works better with slightly smarter/more classic outfits. Ish. That all sounds very poncey but I think with a hat it's no different from accessorising with a pair of shoes - you just need to make sure that the hat actually goes with the outfit.
My straw cowboy hat I bought when my second son was a baby and he's now 8, nearly 9. Every year it comes out, every year it looks a bit more battered but the joy of the style is that the lived in look suits it (I'm hoping someone one day will say the same thing about my face....)
My one is long gone from the site but this is a similar style, also from Fatface and I can absolutely vouch for the quality. Mine has been screwed up in a suitcase, a handbag, a drawer and it gets dragged out and reshaped every year with not a mark or dent on it.
Straw Cowboy hat - Fatface £22
The other hat I love that I wear constantly is from Zara last year, absolutely love the mix of white and straw with navy and white band. Much less boho than my Fatface one and one I feel works better with more classic outfits. That was from last year (or maybe the year before actually... in fact yes, i think it's two years old) so clearly long gone but this is a similar version from John Lewis.
John Lewis Straw & Braid Fedora Hat in Natural £25
My one bug bear with hats is that they usually only come in one size and I have a huge bonce. Which is a pain in the proverbial when most hats are too small.
This one is only in one size but the review does say that it comes up big. Let's hope that the reivewer (and her husband who it also didn't fit apparently) don't have titchy tiny pin heads.
John Lewis Fedora £22
But there are the odd ones that come in different sizes. And yes, normally that is for the more expensive ones but I've found a couple at ASOS which are bargains - especially fabulous if you're not entirely sure and want to give them a go. For a tenner, I think it's worth a punt.
ASOS Straw Trilby £10
Like I say, most with different sizes are on the more expensive side but seeing as I've had mine for years and years, I would say it's definitely worth considering for one that you love.
Catarzi Wide Brimmed Straw Fedora £40
One I managed to try on Friday and have to say I'm rather taken with. Yes it's yellow and yes that's a tad limiting but I figure this could really make either a black or monochrome outfit. Or even with navy... or with white....
Marcella Yellow Oversized Trilby from Reiss was £45 now £35
Has the sun finally got to me? Tad too Jamiroquai?
Whilst we're on the subject of oversized - I haven't ever got to grips with ones with a wider brim but I have a friend who wears one and looks amazing. I'm thinking these with little dresses might make an interesting option. Slightly more feminine?
ASOS Straw floppy hat in silver metallic £16
Another one with size options - be still my massive head.
ASOS Straw Oversized Floppy Hat in black £16
However I think my favourite wide brimmed one would be another from Reiss and yes it's in the sale and yes it comes in two sizes.
Lucien Neutral Cutout Brim hat in neutral now £39 was £59
The other option of course is looking at men's hats. I keep going to borrow The Husband's panama hat but I daren't as it's his pride and joy and I know I'd lose or ruin it. He got it from Lord's and I am not up for making a trip there to replace it.
Straw Panama Hat from M&S £19.50
Now all the ones that I would choose are larger of brim which work for me as I'm a giant. But if you are of a more diminutive stature, then you may prefer a slightly smaller shape.
This would be top of my list - total bargain from M&S.
Animal Print Scarf Trim Trilby £15
Or a much smaller brimmed fedora £18
And if you are more generous of bonce then there are some men's versions to consider.
Straw Trilby hat from M&S £19.50
This is a men's but it's much more feminine to me.
Straw Trilby Hat £19.50 in navy
So hopefully we're all set for the heatwave - or is any one else starting to panic.....??!
Speaking of Summer and panicking - it's sort of just sinking in that the holidays are around the corner. Although we, thank goodness, are still able to count in weeks and not days. Don't get me wrong, I love having my children around (and I LOVE not having to get up at the crack of the dawn. Note to self - must train children to open the back door so they can take the puppy out as 6.30am might be killing me).
But it's a long time. It's finding that balance to avoid dying of guilt at listening to their brains atrophy as you hear the beep beep of their ipdad. Now the last couple of holidays, I have mentioned that I have discovered a cunning plan in the form of an online maths programme (which also works on the ipad - oh yes kids, so long as there is wifi, there are sums) called The Maths Factor.
Clearly lots of you also thought it was an excellent idea as they contacted me after having a great uptake from my blog and have asked if I would endorse their Summer Clubs. Well I can happily say, I am more than happy to tell you about them seeing as they have saved my bacon over the past couple of holidays and it's something that we already use and I've happily recommended.
Their Summer Clubs open on 1st July (although you can sign up from today) for three months and if you sign up by the 3rd July there is a special offer whereby you can get those three months for just £9.99. Usual price would be £27.50 so it's definitely worth signing up now (you could buy a new hat with the money saved!)
For us - we have the dreaded 11+ exam in September (three days after the start of term. GAH) and the opportunity for my 10 yr old to daily practise Maths that isn't a Bond Paper, that is quick, more fun and something that bit different whilst still being work, is just invaluable. The Summer Clubs are designed for daily use - I've had a look through the programmes and it's perfect for a quick hit of numeracy every day without overloading them with what they perceive to be "work". It's a more targeted programme than the general one and you will be able to track their progress through the summer holidays.
I have honestly found The Maths Factor in general to be great and friends of mine who also use it have said the same. So if you happen to see me out and about in the Summer and my children are all glued to their ipads in a restaurant, yes they'll be playing a game but I will be sitting there with my glass of wine, smugly in the knowledge that they're actually doing sums!
Seriously worth a look if you want to negate the guilt factor of the oft dreaded age of technology that is seemingly taking over our children's lives.
But back to the fashion and here I am in outfit from Friday and yes complete with hat. What a difference a couple of days make.... actually pouring with rain here now (are they "sure" the heatwave is on the way?)
White longsleeved slub tee - hush
Paint splattered cargos - Zara
Tan gladiators - Aldo
Cognac cross body bag - Campomaggi
Hat - Fatface
I hope everyone had a great weekend - we seemed to have done nothing but kiddy stuff (we clearly are horrifically selfish parents as we do usually get a night off) and the poor husband has a big trial starting tomorrow so has been flat out with work. I have my autistic course tomorrow morning which is more than a little draining so tonight I think I'm going to treat myself to something online - seeing as I have bought NADA in the sales yet. Yellow hat - yay or nay....? Or a bag.... I think I may have another obsession brewing with a navy bag......