Anna's Island Style

Gothic Romance, our Style Not Age challenge for October




Hi there! Welcome to the October Style Not Age challenge, set this month by Emma. I'll be totally honest and admit that when Emma announced that Gothic Romance was her theme, well my heart sank. Gothic anything is my least favourite thing in the whole world. The popularity of the Goth trend is something that seems to have eluded me over the years. I'm not sure what the appeal is at all. However, as you can see, I found an outfit of sorts which ticked that box. Sorry Emma, this one is just not for me!




As you can tell, Emma is in her element with this - and why not? She and her hubby travelled to a local beauty spot to capture the right atmosphere for her outfit too. Read all about her back story on Style Splash




Hilda looks the part in this dramatic setting too. Also wearing black with lace, she is embracing the seasonal theme. See more from her on Over The Hilda.




Jacqui is looking just a tad concerned at the prospect of something spooky about to happen down in the woods. Find out if there were any goulish happenings on Mummabstylish.




And last, but by no means least, is Gail who looks to be in her element with this challenge. Bravo with your interpretation of this! Check out her story on Is This Mutton.









My Gothic Romance dress was from Zara quite a few years ago, as were the sock boots. The dark green sheer crepe fabric is whispy and feminine. As winter dresses go it's useful to have in my wardrobe, but I seem to have fallen out of love with it. I've kept hold of it for occasions like this - it was the only thing that came to mind immediately and I honestly looked no further. 




Accessories read like this - black mirror sunglasses are by Quay Australia, citrine rings are - small one gifted, large one charity shopped and pendant is by Vivienne Westwood.




The Zara sock boots often give rise to comments about me wearing fishnet tights over my boots. From the close-up you can see they are created from two layers which indeed give that effect. 

Apologies to the ladies of the collective as I just seem to have gone through the motions with this month's challenge. I fancy that I may be suffering from the the winter blahs and this theme didn't bring out the best in me, sorry!

                                                                                      Anna x

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Monochrome madness




Hurrah for Friday! How wonderful it is to be teetering on the edge of the weekend! I'm running on low at the moment, counting the days until I finish the season. It's only a week away now - a week until I can relax and take some time off. It'll be a treat, that's for sure.

But in the meantime, this outfit of the day is all about black and white and how it doesn't have to be as boring as it might sound. My mish-mash style is a wonderfully riotous blend of era's that represent me, but only for today. The chameleon in me will have reinvented herself by tomorrow you understand.




The houndstooth check skirt is a quirky mix of two different sizes of checks and what's more surprising is that it's by M&S. Purchased second hand from the Cornwall Air Ambulance shop last year, it was in almost mint condition and a fantastic find. I'm always on the lookout for the unusual, but didn't expect M&S to provide it.




My Michael Kors studded jacket on the other hand, wasn't second hand, but was a thrilling find at TK Maxx a few years ago when Steve and I were overnighting in Truro on our way to Venice. The metal studs on the jacket make it so weighty that I had to box it up and post it back home to myself as it was taking up too much of my luggage allowance. It's a funky jeans jacket, perfect for lifting any outfit out of the doldrums, not that you could say that about this one!






Pre-loved rings and this mixed metal necklace add a bit more fun to the look. Black and white sunglasses are by Quay Australia in case you didn't know.




These rather fabulous two tone oxfords are by Church's and of course the most striking part of them has to be the dazzling blue soles. I've had them for two years now, but don't wear them often as they are so blooming special that I don't want them to get damaged. It's not really about keeping them for best, more that I want them to last forever, and being Church's they probably will!




Note how the creative director arranged for a perfectly coordinating black and white boat to drift past at just the right moment. 

And finally, just a little bit of larking about for Fiona and I before we left the premises. The Lighthouse had been a great backdrop for this shoot. A tiny lull between bookings had allowed us a day to make use of the house. We had a taste of living in the lap of luxury and goodness, how special we felt.










There was a musical sound track to this, Ain't no stopping us now, and the only thing that did stop me was the dodgy mum dancing! 

Coming up on Monday will be our monthly style challenge for the Style Not Age collective so do please swing by to see what we're up to this time.

Until then, have a great weekend!

Anna x

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Sgt. Pepper comes to Tresco




Hello again! How did your weekend go? Mine seemed to whizz by in a shot with a couple of good swims, a dash of cooking and a laundry catch up and here I am suddenly back at work. Today's 60's look is instantly recognisable, even to my dear hubby who chirped up "Sergeant Pepper" as I appeared for the photo shoot.




So, here we are, it's mid-October and I'm working hard at keeping on top of my mood by using colour therapy. The past few posts will testify that not only is it working for me, but you too, are finding it a pick-me-up. Thank you for that! I'm delighted that something so simple can change my day and make a difference to yours as well.




I last wore this Polo Ralph Lauren military jacket in the spring (see here) and it's been playing the waiting game since then and the trousers made their last appearance on the blog last Christmas (see here). I've always thought the jacket would work well with these brocade trousers, but I wasn't happy with the cut of them. They are actually men's trousers and as such are quite straight legged - or should I say they were until last weekend, when I decided that I wanted to streamline the shape of them. Every now and then I take a crazy notion to undertake some sewing and this was one of those times. It's crazy because I'm not very good at it and even find sewing in a straight line a challenge! But I turned the trousers outside in, tried them on, pinned them to fit, then ran a running stitch down the pins and finally machine stitched them. Ta-dah! The fit is much neater now and makes them much more wearable. Off to work I go!




And if last weekend's little bit of crazy was sewing, then this weekend's was counting shoes. I'm not sure why this came about, but I think it was because I couldn't find a particular pair of shoes and had to go through all of the cupboards, wardrobes, shoe boxes and tubs under the bed. At some stage I've had a comment from a reader asking how many pairs of boots I have and it must have stayed with me. Before I confess to the amount, let's take a moment to reflect on the fact that I haven't bought a single pair of shoes or boots since the last time I was in a shop, which is February. I'm on month 8 of my shopping ban and might have felt slightly smug about that had I not discovered that I possess 183 pairs of shoes and boots in total. (In fact, it's 183.5 pairs as I have one odd boot - a brand new, with the label still on boot - which seems to have come adrift from its partner somehow. My dear friend Ben sent them to me last winter and I've yet to wear them, although the chances of that are looking rather slim currently!)




Note that I don't looked in the least abashed at this excessive amount and that's probably because I'm not. Clothes and shoes, jewellery and bags are all part of my collection of finery that makes my life all the richer. I love them all, and if I don't then I get rid of them. Once I'm done with them I pass them onto charity shops so that someone else may enjoy the fun of them. I could justify my excesses by explaining how I don't smoke or drink, I can't eat cakes or sweets, crisps or chocolate, but really, that's got nothing to do with it. Dressing up is my daily pleasure. It makes me feel more me: brighter and happier with a spring in my step and hopefully it brings a bit of joy into someone else's day too - and surely that's no bad thing!




Anyway, let's have a quick run down of the outfit shall we? Jacket, by Polo Ralph Lauren, brocade trousers have no labels, but cost me £20 from the Oxfam shop in Truro (beautifully curated for a charity shop and well worth a visit if you can get to it). White lace blouse is from Zara last summer, black boots from Topshop (oops, I wore these last time!) and the red leather belt is pre-loved by Tommy Hilfiger. 




Jewellery is pre-loved and my sunglasses are by River Island, although they are rather old by now.




I love the close-up of this, showing all of the ornate details of the outfit. Sometimes my idea of dressing up might be mistaken as fancy dress and goodness, that makes me laugh!




Thanks for dropping by and thank you too if you follow me on Instagram. It's great to know that I'm inspiring you to try new things. Lovely too, to know that you're enjoying seeing the snippets of my island life. Perhaps the blog is a momentary distraction from the everyday stress of COVID-19. I hope you're coping with the latest upsurge if you live in the UK and are managing to keep safe as you go about your daily business. Wherever you are, look after yourself and come back soon.

                                                                                              Anna x

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Another burst of colour




Hurrah, it's Friday! How are you? I'm ready for some down time that's for sure. The season here is drawing to a close and golly I'm looking forward to having a break. It's been a weird summer for all of us hasn't it? 

Last weekend Fiona and I took ourselves off to the other side of the island and had fun taking these shots around Old Grimsby at Raven's Porth beach. 




I'm continuing my theme of colour therapy today, this time using Emerald green to lift and energise my mood. I've created a suit using this cute little green jacket with round collars and 3/4 length sleeves paired with these rather outrageous leather joggers. The jacket is second hand and the trousers were from TK Maxx.




My favourite Quay Australia sunglasses always add a dash of glamour to an outfit.




Black and green make a great contrast, giving a sharp look to the outfit of the day. I added this bejewelled bag to inject a bit of sparkle to the otherwise flat colours. The bag is in the shape of a turtle - you can see the gold feet and head. I found this in a boutique when I was in St Andrews a couple of years ago while visiting my sister. The round shape is big and spacious and is perfect for stashing a spare pair of shoes in as well as all of the obvious!




I'm wearing my much loved Vivienne Westwood orb pendant along with these charity shopped rings. The black ribbed polo neck with gilt buttons is a long standing mainstay of my winter wardrobe. It was great charity shop find many years ago and just seems to wash and wear without showing signs of age. (Oh how I wish I could say the same about me, hahaha!)



 
It's a joy to have brought these patent leather cuban heeled boots back into play again! These were from Topshop, last year I think.  I came across them in the sale - they were the last pair on the shelf and luckily in my size! I'll try to limit the times I wear them on the blog, but honestly in real life I wear them lots. They're all day comfortable as well as looking sooooo cool!




The backdrop and I are vying for attention here. Behind me is the view out towards St Martin's and the Eastern Isles, one of my favourite summer escapes. 




Those of you who know Tresco will recognise this as the gateway into the newest rental property on the island. Fiona and I played fast and loose around there, making the most of the pretty surroundings. The Lighthouse is in a wonderful setting, right on the shoreline and the interior of the large beach house is finished to the highest of standards. See here for more images and details about this amazing addition to the island's cottages. 






We enjoyed the vacant possession of the property for a couple of hours, reveling in the house and its incredible views. Oh how the other half lives! You'll see this backdrop crop up again over the next couple of months as I showcase some other outfits. What great fun we had!

                                                                         Anna x

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