Technical hitches and what you learn along the way

Sometimes life gets complicated and this week my computer started to play up. It kept telling me my password was wrong, locked me out until eventually I couldn't get into the darned thing. Apart from the utter frustration, I was worried - did I have a nasty virus residing in my dear old laptop? If you can't get in though, how can you find out? Not only that, but I had the panic of wanting to reply to comments on my blog, visit other bloggers and also put together a post for today. Eeeeek! After a sleepless night last night, the cavalry arrived today in the shape of the business's IT department. A warped keyboard was found to be the issue and here I am, back online. 

But it got me thinking about how much we are now dependant on our computers to run our personal lives: our banking, paying bills, renewing providers of all sorts of services, ordering prescriptions, making appointments, keeping in contact with family and friends and that doesn't even touch on all the things we have to do within the workplace. I have a friend who is going back to writing all her vital contacts and info into a new posh Filofax as security for events like mine. Now that we're all being prompted to becoming paperless it does beg the question as to how to keep track if your computer crashes when you don't have the info on file. My back-up programme is flashing away, transferring and updating as I type away, but imagine if the breakdown was not just my own computer but something further reaching - what happens then?

My point today is not about scaremongering, it's about the relief I felt when the wonderfully talented Tony turned up at my door in his lunchtime to hand me back my fully functioning laptop. All was well, life was back on track and even though I was way behind on lots of computer based chores, the joy outweighed the workload. Sometimes we need things to go wrong to remind us how lucky we are. 

And so in this vein, I've decided to post this (previously rejected) outfit. My high standards had led me to think that my dress and shoes, being too similar to the beach and seaweed in colour, couldn't possibly make the grade. But what the heck, I'm delighted to post something, nay anything for your amusement/entertainment. The dress is pure silk and preloved, coming in at £8.95 last month. Nougat is the brand and is one that seems to fit my shape well. The suede sandals were in the summer sale at Sainsbury's for only £5 and the pretty necklace was another preloved bargain at £3. The rings too are preloved, matching perfectly with my Michael Kors watch and Kate Spade rose gold knot bangle.

Today's lesson for me was to remember the simple act of gratitude. Oh, and maybe the joy of a summer breeze!

Anna x


The last summer exhibition

Friday heralded the final summer show at the Gallery and what a lovely collection it is (see here). And just to make the evening more special one of the artists, Theo Crutchley-Mack, managed to surprise us by turning up unannounced just when we'd resigned ourselves to hosting the party on our own. 

The party may be over, but the fat lady hasn't quite sung yet, as the show continues until the 19th October so plenty time for Maggie, Melanie and Theo to sell, sell, sell!

The eagle-eyed amongst you will recognise this most recognisable of outfits. My planned ensemble was something entirely different, but just didn't feel right on the night. With time running out (why, oh why, don't I have a dry run of these beforehand?) I threw open my wardrobe and my eyes fell on the riot of colour and texture that is this vintage skirt and decided to go with what made me feel fabulous. And I did, all night long. Outfit details - skirt: (vintage) Susan Small, blouse: (vintage) Shubette, shoes and handbag: Primark, rings and necklace: all preloved, sunglasses: Sainsbury's, belt: eBay.

The girls and I went out for a drink after the show was over to celebrate a job very well done. Thanks to Heather, Polly, Max and Ruth for making each evening run smoothly - without your help ladies the evening wouldn't be the success it is!

As the sun set on a perfect evening, our six shows in 60 days came to an end. The paintings came, were hung, many sold, and hopefully many more will sell before the year is over. We enjoyed the company of artists and clients bonding over a glass of wine, discussing the merits of the show of the moment. The exhibitions may be over, but summer remains and we will all revel in the last of these golden days before autumn creeps in.

Anna x


Black trouser challenge 13

Well, well, well, I really can't believe I've been going so long with my self-imposed Black Trouser challenge. I kinda thought six weeks would be good and yet here I am still with some ideas in the pipeline. My new pink belt has inspired some different summery outfits, but I worry that autumn may descend before I can show you them. Yes, boots and jackets are waiting in the wings however!

Today's shoot took place in two halves due to a sudden shower that caught Polly and I on the hop. We had to change our location too thanks to the blustery wind so all in all it felt a bit shambolic. Does that show?


Rain splatters on silk handbag and jacket were not really what I had planned...

And this is where charity shopping really has its rewards. My oriental jacket was a thrift shop find earlier this summer and cost me £4.50, so imagine my delight when this weeks You magazine featured it as the latest trend. I'm loving pre-loved fashion! And I'm not alone in this. Waste experts "Wrap" have recently published a report stating that fast fashion is on the wane with consumers preferring to buy secondhand from charity shops and auction websites resulting in us throwing away 50,000 fewer tons of clothes annually than we used to - that's the equivalent to 300 jumbo jets full of clothes! Half of the population are now buying secondhand clothes. In addition to this, make do and mend is rising in popularity with workshops, repair cafes, repair surgeries and online sewing tutorials enabling us to take on projects that previously may have caused us to through away clothes. Getting help and gaining new skills is prolonging the life of our clothes by up to another 18 months all of which helps with this most green issue. Hurrah for this groundswell of change and well done to all of us who are part of this new shopping revolution!

Outfit details - trousers: River Island, jacket: Siruili, sandals (ancient): River Island, rings: pre-loved, handbag: gift, sunglasses: Quay Australia.

Linking with -
Catherine of Not Dressed As Lamb

Anna x


To Bryher and back

No fancy outfits and no proper photo shoot today. Instead I've had a day off work which tied in perfectly with a big low tide at lunchtime. I could have stayed home to catch up on the laundry, the bills, the cleaning, blah, blah, blah, but off I went to walk to Bryher and back. This trip would normally entail a three minute boat ride each way, instead today the boat channel was nearly dry and became a veritable thoroughfare with holidaymakers and locals enjoying the novelty of the occasion.

The pilgrimage starts here as we head towards Samson on the left and Bryher on the right.

A couple of sailing boats are left high and dry on this huge tide. 

These guys are all prepared to paddle back to Bryher when the tide floods later today.

My photos were taken by friends and acquaintances I met mid-channel.

This little crab gave me the evil eye, just in case I tried to invade his territory.

This Frenchman was catching shrimps on the low tide. Makes for a tasty meal!

Looking inland to New Grimsby bay. In the centre of the shot is the gap in the wall where we do my photo shoots in the morning. Where I stand now is the backdrop to these.

Home again.

I'm never happier than when I'm by the sea. I'm an Aquarius and water seems to be home to me - swimming, pottering about in rock pools, bobbing about in our little boat - it's always so therapeutic, so relaxing and totally absorbing. I'm so fortunate to have always lived by the sea and couldn't imagine living anywhere else, and hopefully I won't ever have to. I hope you've enjoyed this small interlude, my away day which is only a stone's throw from my house.
Anna x

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