As suggested by...Karren.

Today I thought I might introduce a new feature to my blog which has come about thanks to one of my readers. She classes herself as a "lurker", but felt the need to comment to give me some feedback. Well, I'm delighted to convert you to becoming a commenter Karren, and also to accommodate you with your suggestion. Karren wanted me to pair up my beautiful Micheal Kors boots with my leather jeans and a short jacket. Initially I thought this was a bit too racy for me, but I then realised that if I actually have these items in my wardrobe then I'm surely a bit racy anyway! I've no idea if this is what she had in mind, but I kinda ran with the idea of rock-chick seasoned with a liberal dash of sparkle.

This entire outfit flies in the face of age appropriate dressing which I find totally liberating. Since starting my blog nearly a year ago, I can say that I'm increasingly becoming more myself. What? you may well be asking. Let me explain. In the run up to launching my blog I followed lots of fashion blogs and also did a lot of reading and researching into all sorts of aspects of self development. One very useful book was "The Happiness Project" by Gretchen Rubin. This contained an abundance of wonderful, empowering advice, but the one phrase that struck a chord with me was her advice to herself to "be more Gretchen". I took that to heart and have used it daily to help me redefine myself if I feel I'm losing my way. I still urge myself to be more *Gretchen at times when I think I may be in danger of becoming a lesser version of myself through emotional or physical neglect, or even by being swayed by outside influences which are not to my benefit. So, what I mean to say is; the freedom to have somewhere to express myself through my outfits has enabled me to explore my heart's desire and be my true self. Clothes and shoes I may have previously looked longingly at, I now pluck off the rack and try them on. You, my readers, and fellow bloggers have played a massive part in my fashion liberation, and for that I thank you. I'm neither a slave to trends, nor am I aspiring to be a trend setter, but I know what I like and I know how I like to look. The joy of the platform that is my blog, is that I may share my whimsical outfits, and racy get-ups with you from behind the relative safety of my laptop.

Yes, I know I'm probably meant to say "be more Anna", but the power seems to come from what her name reminds me to do, thanks to the book (it's also more comical when I say it out loud). I contacted Gretchen once my blog was up and running, and told her how influential her advice had been. She was indeed happy to have helped and said she would become one of my first background followers - my readership figures seem to reflect a fair few of these amongst you.

I have two more "As suggested by..." posts already lined up where I'm responding to fellow bloggers suggestions. Please do feel free to pop your suggestion in my comments box, whoever you are. Anything you've already seen on my blog can be paired up with anything else (within reason) according to your fancy. I'm interested in having different viewpoints and ideas to work with over the next few months. My other new feature "Ping-Pong Post" is going to become a regular monthly feature and there's no reason why "As suggested by..." can't be too. Please come along and join in. See you all again on Sunday x

Jacket: Micheal Kors. Top: H&M. Trousers: H&M. Boots: Michael Kors. Necklace and rings: old.

Linking with
Cherie at Style Nudge
Jess at Elegantly Dressed and Stylish
Lindsey at The Pleated Poppy 


Happy Easter!

I know we all think Easter generally heralds the start of spring, but I, for one, am not quite ready for the warmer weather. You see, I really need to gad about in my wonderful, crimson winter coat for just a little while longer. I'm very happy to be bundled up in this bright woollen vision of loveliness, huddled up against the chill winds.

Don't get me wrong, I love the warmer weather too, just not yet. I think it'll be a few more weeks until I start to pull out suitcases from under the beds where I store all of my spring and summer clothes. In the meantime I've got a trip to the mainland coming up and that will be another opportunity to see what delights my regular charity shops have in store for me. This year I've made a commitment to have a big clear out of not only clothes, but everything that is clogging my storage system up. When I say storage system, I'm being rather grand in describing what has become a state of grid-lock within the house. The more sensible and organised amongst you may well question what I'm doing heading off to the shops to buy even more. Well 1) I now run a fashion blog, therefore need to inject new clothes to keep things interesting, 2) I'm a clothesaholic, 3) there is no 3. In my defence, I would say that clothes have been a passion of mine since a very early age. Also, as I don't smoke, drink alcohol or eat chocolate I feel that my life really ought not to be about total denial. Like everyone else I want to enjoy the good life and that for me means the daily pleasure of dressing up for myself. I'd like to think that if you're reading this you may be sharing that enjoyment too. Please let me know if that's the case as I do love reading your comments and having feedback to work with.

Coat: Palermo. Sweater: H&M. Culottes: charity shop. Boots: c/o J D Williams. Tights: Dorothy Perkins. Belt: old. Necklace: Emily Nixon. Watch: Michael Kors. Gold bangle: Kate Spade New York. Pink bangle: gift. Pink ring: gift. Blue ring: charity shop. Gloves: charity shop.

Linking up with 
Catherine Not Dressed As Lamb
Patti of Not Dead Yet Style
Jess of Elegantly Dressed and Stylish 


Polly's back!

Yes, I'm thrilled to say that Polly, my very capable gallery assistant and wonderfully creative blog photographer, is back working alongside me for another season. After having a diverse range of jobs over the winter as well as a couple of holidays, she is equally happy to be part of our small island community once again. Our first photo shoot, before our working day began, was as fun as ever, and I do hope her infectious sense of humour comes across throughout the season ahead.

It was my turn to apply a bit of sabotage when Polly was trying to appear poised.

Am a bit cross with myself that I didn't remove the label out of this top very well.

Gold Chelsea boots. Oh how I love them!

Today's outfit is all about the shaggy top. I found this in a charity shop in Truro and it was brand new, hurrah! I love the colour as well as the shape. The chilly easterly wind is still blowing across the islands so this extra layer is just what's needed at work to keep me cosy. Black leggings and the black turtleneck were my first thought, but when I tried them on underneath the bottle green top it all looked a bit flat. After a quick regroup I decided on these floral jeans from Zara to keep the whole thing funky. And there's nothing more funky than my fab gold Chelsea boots. My dancing girl necklace shows up so well against this dark colour, don't you think? Thanks for dropping by and I'll see y'all again on Sunday!

Top: charity shop. Jeans: Zara. Black top: charity shop. Chelsea boots: River Island. Necklace: Charlie Dodge. Rings: charity shop.

I'm linking up with my hosts
Jess of Elegantly Dressed And Stylish 
Catherine of Not Dressed As Lamb 


Ping-Pong Post no1

If you're a regular reader you may well have seen the birth of this idea way back in a December post. That's when a couple of my fellow bloggers were hugely excited by a certain offering of mine in the shape of an orange tartan jacket by Benetton as seen here. Well, over the past few months, in between Christmas, some bouts of illness and my annual holiday, we've all been working away on this idea. Today brings you the first Ping Pong Post (small fanfare please). I have a scenario in my mind where Samantha of Fake Fabulous and Ann of Kremb de la Kremb are magically transported through space and time to my home for a girlie evening where we share some wine, enjoy a few giggles and have a root around in my closet to do a bit of trying on. The fact of the matter is that it's my jacket that has done the travelling; ping-ponged from the Isles of Scilly to Hong Kong and on to Scotland before it ping-ponged home to me. So here we are sharing how we've styled up this plaid beauty in our own particular way... 

This Benetton jacket was a dream find a couple of years ago. Here's Ann with her take on it...

Ann is mixing things up big-time against this groovy backdrop. There's a bit of a cowboy look going on with these leather gaucho's, boots and hat making me want to shout "yee-ha!" but then the punch of that leopard print bag and sexy cat's eye sunnies just throws the whole thing into another styling realm. Ann lives in Hong Kong and has travelled widely, as well as having lived in many countries throughout her working life. She juggles career and family commitments with her thriving blog Kremb de la Kremb which is a fabulous mix of fashion trends, beauty tips, recipes and her creative diy projects as seen hereShe has recently upped her fashion credentials with a diploma from the London College of StyleWhat attracted me to Ann's blog was the warmth and honesty of her writing which I find endearing. Her bubbling enthusiasm makes her a very popular blogger as does the way she puts her clothes together. 

Here are Ann's outfit details:
tartan coat--Anna's! 
black hat and sunnies--Forever 21
black turtleneck--Uniqlo
black (p)leather culottes--Zara
cowboy boots--Old West via Zappos
leopard crossover--Jaspal, a Thai (online too) boutique kind of like Zara
earrings--random HK market stall

And here's Samantha of Fake Fabulous with her spin on the same jacket. The pop of citrus yellow of her sweater is that dash of the unusual which is Samantha's signature style. Her other strength is her extensive shoe collection! When I think of Samantha, I think friendly, fresh and funky. She always adds a twist to her dressing - this zany handbag being a case in point. Samantha has already been an inspiration to lots of women with her informative "how-to" posts as seen here. Not one to be told she can't wear something, Samantha champions women to break the rules and confines of the fashion world. She and I both started our blogs about the same time (some nine months ago) and we found common ground in our passion for bold colour play as well as pattern mixing. Our other bond is my homeland, Scotland, where Samantha now lives while I've crossed the border to England where she hails from. Our love of tartan, kilts and all good things Scottish cements our friendship. 

And here's her details -
Coat: Anna’s!!
Jeans: M&S
Shoes: XTI
Jumper: Boden (teens)
Shirt: Boden (Adults this time)
Bag: M&S

We, none of us, remembered to show the back view of the jacket which is just a interesting as the front, so I've pulled this photo up from my initial post - see it here. It's been terrific fun to bring this feature together with more than a little help from my friends (sing along if you remember this Beatles favourite). We have some great plans for the next batch of Ping-Pong Posts, as well as some slight variations on the theme. Do keep an eye out for details of the next PPP which will be coming up in April/May.

My outfit details -
Jacket: Benetton. Jeans: Dorothy Perkins. Boots: Office. Blouse: charity shop. Cardigan: H&M. Necklace: old. Rings: charity shop.

I'll be linking with these lovely hosts this week
Sheela of Sheela writes 
Catherine of Not Dressed As Lamb
Patti of Not Dead Yet Style 
Jess of Elegantly Dressed And Stylish


Is it a tunic, is it a dress?

Sasha has done me proud with this Mother's Day gift. I wasn't sure if it was a tunic or a dress until she told me she thought it would look great with tights and brogues. And how right she was. Yes, I know it's a tad on the short side, but I did wear a long cardigan over it at work today to preserve my modesty. It was only when I looked through all of my photos that I decided it really shone without the cardi. Thanks Sash!

I love this print, it's rich and opulent, and the perfect colourway for me too.

These brogues don't come out often so it's great to have a new outfit that needs them.

This was the more demure version for work.

I've got a bit of exciting news regarding my forthcoming post on Sunday. A little seedling of an idea I had a few months ago will (hopefully) come to fruition with the help of two of my blogging friends. I don't really want to say too much a) in case the whole thing bombs and I have egg on my face and b) it's a bit of a novel idea and would like it to be a lovely surprise for you on the day. One of the bloggers is on the other side of the world and we're currently trying to synchronise our watches in a very James Bond kind of way so that our posts all go live at the same time. Please bear with me on the day if you don't see the post until later than usual. It may be the evening until we can all link up, so please do come back to check from time to time. If it works I think it'll be a neat little post. Watch this space.

Tunic: H&M. Cardigan: Fenn Wright Manson. Tights: Dorothy Perkins. Shoes: Boden. Sunglasses: Quay Australia. Watch: Michael Kors. Pendant: Noel. Yellow ring: Martin James. Bronze ring: old.

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