Anna's Island Style

My new fun fur!

Hello again! How's your week been? Back to work? Me too. It wasn't too bad. Sometimes the thought of returning to work is much worse than the reality, isn't it? The decorations may be packed away and the party food and chocs are all done, but that doesn't mean the fun is all over. And by fun, yes I'm talking fun fur. This orange bundle of delight was a pre-Christmas present to myself from TK Maxx and the brand is Maison Cinqcent.

Much as the closet cull and dejunking is still ongoing at mine, I'm also happy to be buying new pieces that define me at this time of my life. As my next birthday looms on the horizon I'm almost counting the number of paychecks until I reach retirement age. I mention this because once I do retire I'll not have the ability to spend on a whim or to follow the trends that take my eye. It's scary to think of living on a reduced income, but that's why I'm buying what I do so that I may enjoy wearing them for the next few years as a working woman with an excuse to dress up for the job. And thereafter, well I'll still be that eccentric old gal on Tresco, dressing up just to go to the local shop!

Glitz, glamour and fur seem to be in my DNA and I can't see that I'll be able to step away from that no matter what age I am. Steve always reminds me that this is a hobby that does no harm to anyone, so why not carry on as long as it makes me happy. It's good to have that reassurance, especially when I'm particularly done up to the nines!

Today's beautiful backdrop is the view from Fearless Cottage. The patio overlooks the channel between Tresco and Bryher looking north towards the wild Atlantic ocean. At this time of year part of my job is to check all of the artworks on display within the holiday properties which also affords me some fabulous photo opportunities. 

My two-piece is a vintage buy from way back in May when I was off-island in Cornwall. I came across a vintage shop in Penryn where I spent a lovely half hour browsing the stock of not just clothes but furniture too. The crimplene suit is by Diana Martin, a designer of the day; the day being late 50's. I think I bought it because it reminds me of my childhood when everyone's mum wore crimplene dresses and we all wore bri-nylon shirts to school and brushed nylon nightdresses. And wow, that's a blast from the past remembering those nightdresses! My two sisters and I wore those nighties, but as the brushed nylon was the cosy side, well we used to wear them inside out. What a scream to remember this from over 50 years ago!

Styling is everything when it comes to vintage outfits. I'm painfully aware of wearing clothes that are almost the same age as me and how they really depend on the right accessories to bring them up to date. I've added my studded stretch and leather belt in dark green to give the suit shape. The quirky Scottie dog necklace adds fun to the look, tonally matching rings brings the whole thing together. Today's sunglasses are by Radley.

My knee high wet look boots are another surefire way of adding punch to the outfit. See them on ASOS here

Thanks for dropping by again today. I'll be back again next week with more style inspiration and news from the idyll that is Tresco. Keep safe, keep well and enjoy yourself in whatever way you can!

                                                                                             Anna x


Look what I got for Christmas!

Happy New Year to you, my dear readers! I hope that you've had a lovely break and managed to stay well. We've had a super family time over the past couple of weeks and it's been one of our best Christmases ever I would say. My daughter's boyfriend came over from the mainland for the festive period, adding to our excitement as this was the first time we've met him. Suffice to say that he's an absolute gem, a real find and such a happy addition to our family.

So, this amazing vintage leather jacket is what Steve bought for my Christmas. Of course, I made sure that wishlists were passed on to everyone, and this is what I directed Steve to. Many moons ago I had a patchwork leather blazer that I passed on to a friend and this reminds me somewhat of that. The jacket was from eBay, bought at the end of November, leaving just the right amount of time for it to get here in the midst of the postal chaos.

I love the variety of skins used to create this very unusual jacket; the animal print, embossed hide, diamante studs, floral prints, tassel fringes and leather ruffles all go to make it quite unique. It's like wearing a piece of art. Oh my goodness, how I love it! 

I teamed the jacket with an old gold sweater (from H&M) and these funky new jeans (Primark). 

The gold leather Chelsea boots are very ancient (from River Island), but much loved.

I took myself off for a Boxing Day walk to burn up a few excess calories and also test drive the bomber jacket and see how it fitted. It's fab, passed the test with flying colours! 

I stopped to enjoy the view. I wasn't surprised to see lots of people out, stretching their legs after all of those Christmas Day calories. Family groups with dogs, couples out walking and driving past on golf buggies, all passed by below my hilltop perch in the half hour I sat there.

Today's jewellery features another Christmas present - the necklace (Zara) was from a girlfriend and is a perfect accessory for this look. The gold coloured flower ring was a Christmas pressie from her too, a couple of years ago. The other gold ring was a charity shop find. The sunglasses are by Quay Australia.

Apart from family meals together we had a pretty low key time over the holidays. We met up with our extended family for drinks one night which was another excuse to dress up, but no pics of that. I did manage to get some shots of the day that I dressed for work as my favourite Christmas movie, Elf.

This was very well received by all of my customers at the Gallery that day, resulting in lots of laughter and appropriate comments.

And this was my outfit for NYE at home, where I did have my very own kitchen disco while hubby snoozed in front of the TV.

I did full on glitz for that, wearing silver and gold sparkles, sequins and glitter. None if it was new, but all fulfilled the need for full on glamour on the home front!

And finally, here's some swimming shots from the festive period. The first was my last swim of 2021.

And below is the venue for my New Year's Day swim. Green Porth was tucked out of the westerly wind affording just enough protection to make it look nigh on perfect.

I was joined by two islanders, Rebecca and Emma for the swim which was in aid of Mental Health Swims. Photos from each of us earned donations from Speedo. Somehow a group swim always feels better, dare I say even warmer, as you have the lovely distraction of chat and laughter throughout.

Not drowning, just waving!

And that pretty much rounds up my past week or so. It's been great to have some time away from work and to relax in my pj's for a change. I do hope you've had a lovely break from the norm and that you managed to spend some time with your nearest and dearest. Sending you lots of love and good luck for 2022 from my island home.

                                                                                         Anna x


December's Style Not Age challenge

Hello again and welcome to the final Style Not Age challenge of the year! The onus was on Jacqui to round off our year on the right note and she came up with My Perfect Little Black Number for NYE. Personally, I have very little that falls into this category so it was quite easy to choose between the offerings in my wardrobe. My vintage frock has been a stand-by for years since I found it in a charity shop and it seemed to be perfect for this challenge. But first let's catch up with the other ladies of the collective to see how they approached this month's task...

Emma from the Style Splash also shopped her closet, choosing this LBD from Bastyan and shoes from Quiz. Looking sleek and elegant, Emma is more than ready for that NYE bash!

Another stylish twist comes from Gail in her Hobbs black dress with mulitcoloured spots. Old favourite boots mean she'll be able to dance all night long. Find her backstory on Is This Mutton blog.

Over the Hilda is also sporting a spotty frock; hers is from Biba. Hilda has paired the dress with her long time fave Clarks sandals that have indeed danced many a night away! Do check out her blog for more.

Jacqui from Mummabstylish has recently rocked her NYE frock while she was on holiday. The lace and rivets add funk to this Julien Macdonald LBD. Check out Jacqui's blog for more.

My vintage frock is an Italian number by designer Gina Bacconi. I checked out her website and I'm delighted that I grabbed myself a bargain when I paid £20 for this flamboyant number. I love the ornate hemline with gold trim - it's suitably fancy for NYE. 

The gold ruffled hemline was what informed my choice of footwear; these black and gold brocade boots are old, but much loved. I bought them from River Island a few years ago and just love that they add real pizzazz to outfit. And just in case there wasn't enough going on, I opted for these (old) paisley print tights. There's no less is more with this outfit!

All of my accessories, apart from my Radley sunglasses, are second hand. I do miss my jaunts to the mainland to root around charity shops, seeking out those little gems of jewellery that add a personal touch to an outfit. One day when life settles down a bit I'll be back.

Some of my readers may well recognise my backdrop for today's outfit. I visited Cromwell's Castle last week in an effort to get ahead of things, but didn't really take the weather into account. When I climbed to the top of the building, which for some reason seemed like the ideal place for the photo shoot, well it was blowing an absolute gale! I have a heavy weight that I attach to my tripod to hold it down, but even then I was on edge as to whether it would be strong enough to stop my camera come crashing to the ground.

And this is me, all windswept and interesting! 

The jury is out, of course, as to what we will or won't be allowed to do on New Year's Eve when the time comes. I have another very sparkly outfit lined up in case I get lots of invitations to parties, but honestly I think Steve will be very happy if we have to stay at home. Needless to say, I'll be dressing up on the night just for the heck of it!

I do hope you've had a lovely Christmas and that New Year won't be a washout. Let's all keep our fingers crossed that Covid19 won't wreck another party opportunity!

Happy New Year!

Anna x


In the run up to Christmas...

Hello and Happy Christmas to you (in case you don't call by again this week)! I'm back to work for a wee while and that means work outfits are on my mind, particularly those with a festive feel. The eagle eyed among you might remember these rather racy wet-look trousers that I bought in May during my only trip off-island this year. The brand is Pull and Bear, but I found them in TK Maxx in Truro. Well, I tried them out the other day with a gold lurex cardigan (H&M) and pre-loved blouse and am now wondering if the pants are simply too racy for a Gallery Manager? Do leave me your thoughts...

I'm very keen to wear them, but sometimes living on this tiny island leaves me feeling a bit unsure of what's happening with fashion trends out in the big wide world. And dare I ask the question as to whether a woman of my age ought to be wearing wet-look pants full stop? 

One way around this might indeed by to close my eyes to avoid the looks of shock from those I encounter... Or maybe just laugh it off?

Or perhaps just gazing into the middle distance with a cool, confident air might be the answer?

As for accessories, I'm wearing a very old chain necklace from Primark, a gold flower ring, a present from a girlfriend and a large chunky ring from TK Maxx.

One thing that's for sure, is that I do love the pairing of my tartan M&S boots with the skinny pants! 

On the home front, I can report that the Christmas tree is up as are the decorations and the final batch of fudge has been made and packed, so progress is being made. The turkey is due to arrive on Tuesday as is the gammon joint along with the final order of Christmas supplies. Like most of you, we'll have enough food to feed a small army. As for my Christmas day outfit, well I really don't have anything lined up this year. I do hope that inspiration strikes by the time the big day arrives!

Finally, let me just take a moment to say thank you for dropping by today and any other time you've called. As the year draws to an end I'm feeling all sentimental about my readership and how lovely it is to have your comments and feedback. For those of you who have actually beaten a path to my door (aka the desk at Gallery Tresco) during the past 12 months - it's been great to see you and have a chat in person!

I hope you have a great Christmas, that you manage to see family and friends as planned and that our lives aren't too disrupted over the festive period. Take care!

                                                                                    Anna x

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