For me, it's the thin knit. I am obsessed with these. I don't think you can get enough of them. I've packed three of them to come away with this week and honestly, I could wear one every day. They are so comfortable and so forgiving.
And this for me is key. Yes, yes, obviously top of my list of "things I'll do once the kids go back to school" is "EXERCISE".
Except that this has sort of been top of my list for the past three years since the smallest started school (I can't believe he's going into Juniors - how did that happen?!) and whilst I did join a gym for years and I did go pretty regularly (under exceptional duress and only because I was paying for it.. I didn't enjoy it. EVER. And the having to set my alarm for 6am to book into the class for the following week whilst paying just short of £100 a month for the privilege, finally lost its appeal. Funny that....)
To cut a long story short, the muffin has expanded and the stomach muscles have given up the ghost. I am going to work on this, I shall be dog walking a frenzy now that she's a bit older and a plank (we have to start somewhere, so yes that is A plank. Maybe two) every day. Plus at least two sessions of Kettlercise a week. That's the plan...
In the meantime - and to be fair generally... life is too short and I am nothing if not resourceful. I've found a solution. Hide it. Under knitwear.
This doesn't cling, it sits neatly on top of your jeans if you're wearing boyfriend or looser versions - for skinny jeans or jeggings I do have to layer a longline tee underneath and it's thin enough to fit a blazer or more fitted jacket over.
You can layer over a shirt or a tee (I do this on warmer days in lieu of having to put a jacket on), or wear on its own. You can add a scarf or necklace for interest or just keep it plain. Also perfect with a skirt or over a shirt dress for example. And if all that versatility wasn't enough, you can wear for work, for the school run, for lunch, for dinner (I wear with a leather skirt or my pleather peg leg trousers).
I think I have just proved that you can never have too many of these.
With regards to the knit there are also options. Clearly cashmere would be the ultimate ideal but I also happen to love extra fine merino. A cotton/silk/wool mix is an ideal option as well.
Colour wise (yes I can keep going with the justifications for why we need LOADS of these), well this is the ideal opportunity to add a hint of colour to a more neutral wardrobe.
And that's where I'm going to start with one that's top of my wishlist from Me+Em.
I adore this blue. When you have a wardrobe basics that consist of black, navy and grey, this is the perfect little lift and ideal for combining different basics together.
The Perfect Crew Neck Jumper in Azure Blue from Me+Em £68
Other merino options at Gap in a more muted colour palette. I'm loving the oatmeal heather.
Merino crewneck sweater in oatmeal heather £39.95 Interestingly they do these in tall and petite which is very unusual for jumpers.
Seeing as it is the 1 September and apparently the meteorological start of Autumn (I didn't make that up - that's courtesy of BBC News this morning), we really should throw in an Autumnal shade.
Plum heather crewneck merino sweater from Gap £39.95
Moving onto cashmere now and another colour that I am loving is this dark green from Boden. This would be a lovely shade to give that lift to an all black or an all navy outfit... Deliciously autumnal yet a change to the sea of mustard and rust that has flooded the High Street by all accounts. I've likened it to bad 70s wallpaper - it's just not my bag. This however, is a perfect alternative. Also great with grey - a combo of pale grey and charcoal and this green would be just gorgeous. Black shoes and bag. Oh hello September (frankly now I think it would be rude not to buy this....)
Cashmere Relaxed Crew Neck £139 in jade
My pick would be this pale pink version. Not typically Autumnal but if who's to say you have to look like dead leaves. This shade of pale pink with berry shades, or a host of classic neutrals - black, grey or navy looks amazing. I'm also a fan with khaki... But lots of other shades online if this isn't your bag. Plus v necks as well which most of the companies featured here offer as an option. For me, I simply prefer the crew neck.
Pure Cashmere Jumper was £75 now £60
I haven't tried it but I know people swear by Uniqlo Cashmere. Available in crew and v neck and in a host of more feminine colours as well as the obligatory set of neutrals.
Women's Crew Neck Cashmere Jumper £69.90 (£5 off your first order if you sign up online)
Also rather partial to the off white.
Now being tall, I have sworn by men's jumpers for the past couple of years. The Uniqlo ones have been my jumpers of choice and I do think they're great. Like I mentioned, I haven't tried their cashmere, as I've always been super happy with their extra fine merino for £24.90. They did used to do the exact same in a women's version but this year, there's a looser hem to it - personally I like the slightly gathered hem. It's slightly more flattering and shaping I find as opposed to a looser all over jumper.
Extra Fine Merino Crew neck £24.90 in black. I would say the Small is the perfect size 10. I have a navy one too. I am GUTTED that the off white is already sold out in a small but I'm going to go and see if I can find it in store. Be warned. These sell out ridiculously early on and they do not get them back in stock. I can't tell you how fantastic they are.
I also came across a boat neck merino one in navy at ASOS. Interesting option for a chap but perfect in a smaller size for a woman. I would say a loose 10 is a Small.
ASOS Merino Boat Neck Jumper in navy £30
Have you come over to the thin knit side yet? Fear not if you prefer something a bit more oversized, I have those coming up in the next couple of days. These are the ideal tops for over layers with your skinny jeans. Colourwise, what would be your pick of the thin knits? I've already got black, navy and pale grey but I'm definitely after the azure blue and I think a pink could be a great option too. Dare I go bolder than a pale one? And then there's the green.... (although my school jumper was bottle green.. with a red stripe round the v neck which went with an apple green open neck shirt. Boak)
Would love to hear your knitwear thoughts and of course any other recommendations you may have.
So we are having a lovely time away here in Suffolk, even with all the revision the poor 10yr old is having to do for her exam next week. Couldn't have been happier then when The Maths Factor contacted me again and asked would I promote their new 30 Day Maths Challenge.
Now, I won't lie, I may have slightly dropped the ball with the two boys this holiday - to be honest, we've been focussing on social improvement for the Aspie 8yr old and I'll be frank, I'm not Supermum. However, this is the perfect opportunity to get back in saddle and get some numeracy under their belt before going back to school next week.
It also helps that all three can now do some work as opposed to the poor 10yr old just having to head to her room with a stack of papers. Whilst I get to look at new season stock..... could I be happier?!
Perfect time for my boys to start with the 30 day Maths challenge launching today - 1st September (although you can start anytime before 30 September). This is the perfect opportunity to ease them back into "work" mode. Complete a session a day and they'll earn a tick on their "30 day challenge stone". 30 ticks in 30 days and they get sent a medal. And if there's anything that my boys love, it's a medal to take in for show and tell.
If you haven't yet signed up, again in September they're offering your first month for just £1 (usually £9.99). You can cancel at any time though, to be honest (and lots of people I know also rave about it), the opportunity to have your child do something on their iPads other than Goat Evolution, even for 10 mins a day can be nothing but a good thing in my book.
I'll let you know what they think of it and how we go with it through the month.
Meanwhile, the sun came out today and we spent the day on the beach and then into town for ice cream (and a trip to Fat Face to buy up the dregs of the sale for the boys. I was fleeced at Jack Wills for the 10yr old yesterday....). We have friends coming over for a BBQ later.
Look no coat! But one of the much loved thin knit jumpers.
White tee - hush
Black merino crew neck jumper - Uniqlo
Khaki cargo pants - Tommy Hilfiger
Black lace up sandals - Forever21
Black Mario bag - Jerome Dreyfuss
Desperately hoping the weather stays vaguely good as we still have swimming to do ("we" as in the children......)