Show time once again!

Hellooooo! How are you? I may be a day or two late, but here they are, the dream team from our most recent exhibition opening night and don't these young ladies look fabulous? From left to right, Tash, Polly and Hannah did a wonderful job as well as sparkling amidst the heat of the evening on Tuesday when we opened the show for Stuart Kettle, Maggie O'Brien and David Thomas (see the paintings in full here). We sold a few pieces on the opening night and sales are continuing fine thank you.

My frock for the evening is an chiffon number (preloved) by LK Bennett which almost broke the bank at £15. Joking apart, it was in immaculate condition and fits like a dream. This lightweight fabric was perfect for the hot summer evening when we were almost becalmed at New Grimsby with not much of a breeze circulating around the building despite doors and skylights being open.

The finer details of the dress can be seen here where the pleating creates a gentle empire line and a deep v neck with a tiny modesty band behind. The lining is polyester which swishes nicely as you move. This cobalt blue isn't a colour I wear a lot of, and certainly not what I would wear in the winter when my Scottish pallor wouldn't be enhanced by this tone at all, but with a light tan I can just about get away with it.

Note this delicious floaty layer of chiffon - I fancy I didn't quite dance around enough to do it  justice however!

Here's a wee twirl for you.

Oh, and I can do this too!

These lime green satin sandals are by Steve Madden from TK Maxx and also cost £15. The kitten heel was a great height to wear after a long day at work, not too high, nor were the straps too snug either. I wish I'd had a some lime green accessories, but I got by as you can see below.

My oversized pearls (from Debenhams) you'll have seen before as well as the green amethyst bracelet which my dear hubby bought me in Morocco. The fab blue rings are charity shopped. I'm wearing my old favourite sunglasses from Quay.

The photo shoot was at the end of the evening when we were confident that things had gone well which I hope shows in our overall relaxed body language. It can be quite a stressful day, preparing the gallery for the evening's party as well as the conversation topic of the day being which outfit we will wear. So far this summer I've managed to choose mine well in advance and even stick to it rather than my usual last minute change of heart. I'm floundering a bit already about the upcoming one in August, so watch this space...

And finally, July on the Isles of Scilly has been nothing less than idyllic in the heatwave. Work days are peppered with end of the day picnics for Steve and I which makes for a welcome bit of downtime for us. We're off to another island tonight, but in the meantime I'll leave you with some picnic shots from the last couple of weeks.

Landing on the high tide at Samson, just a two minute boat trip from home. 

A quick hop from the boat into the little tender to take us ashore.

Picnic over, it's time to capture something for my Instagram feed - I gotta feature this amazing setting, surely! But first, a slight tweak here, a little adjustment there ...

What about placing another pop of colour here? This hat will do nicely!

Swatting a couple of flies away before I can settle down.

And this is it! The shadows created by the evening sun managed to make me look much more tanned than I really am, so no filters required. Tresco island lies in the backgroud with a sprinkling of yachts moored up in the channel.

This time last year I posted a bikini shot and said that I wasn't sure if at 60 I'd still be happy to wear one. Yay, I still am! 
Anna x


Ping-Pong Piece no 2

Yes, it's the 20th of the month and time for this regular feature with my blogging friends Ann and Samantha. It's my turn to choose a piece for us to style and I've chosen the most ordinary of jackets, the blazer. My reasons being that a) most of our readers will either have or have once had a blazer, b) I wanted to alter the preconception of this conservative article of clothing (I'm surely not the only one who thinks navy and nautical when you mention blazer?), c) it's a chance to show you all sorts of interesting versions of the blazer, d) to offer up a variety of ways to wear it that aren't in the least mundane. Also, I've invited my friend and fellow blogger Julia to join us in the style challenge. 

Julia is a breath of fresh air in the blogging world: exuberant, fun and refreshingly honest that her body type doesn't conform to the norm as far as mainstream fashion goes, but will be damned if that means she's to be excluded from the party. She champions all the lovely ladies who, like her, are apple shaped as well being generously blessed in the bust department. I love her for all these reasons and more. I've know her since she started her blog last year and am so happy to see her blossom as time progresses and her confidence grows. Julia is wearing a longer length blazer in cornflower blue. The blazer and her gorgeous coral handbag are artfully tied together with the floral dress. The one constant throughout Julia's blog is her dazzling smile - she just exudes happiness! See Julia's blog, When The Girls Rule here and follow her on instagram here.

Details -
Jacket - Calvin Klein
Dress - Worthington
Shoes - Franco Sarto
Handbag - Liz Claiborne

Samantha is also sporting a blue blazer, hers being a striped version. Never one to miss the chance to mix her patterns, Samantha has added a spotty print mini skirt to ensure this look won't drift into the boring category. And as if the pop of red in brooch and handbag aren't enough to drum the point home, she adds a final punch with those stellar boots! Find Samantha's blog Fake Fabulous here and follow her instagram here.

Details -
SHOES: Topshop
SHIRT: Urban Outfitters
BLAZER: Primark
SKIRT: Boden

Ann's pink blazer has done a bit of Ping-Ponging itself - once handed over at a clothes swap party, the remorse was too much for Ann who instantly regretted it. A couple of years later it appeared almost as if by magic at another swap party where she snatched it back and isn't planning on letting it go again! Ann's styling is anything but conservative here. Trainers, micro mini skirt, tee shirt and pretty pink sunnies all say casual with a capital C! Find Ann's blog Kremb De La Kremb here and follow her on instagram here.

Details -
Sunnies--Thailand Night Market in Hua Hin
Earrings--Betsy Johnson (and one sadly just broke!)
Necklaces--TJ Maxx
Tank--Florence Market
Blazer--H&M and then a swap!
Denim Skirt--DIY from second hand shop

This beautiful blazer was a Christmas present from my husband (guided perhaps by my daughter). It's been too cold to wear it until now, so the timing couldn't have been better. I've ended up all Great Gatsby meets New Romantics, wearing pleats, frills and pearls to compliment the intricate pattern of the jacket. Lace tights and burgundy Oxfords finish the look.

Oh dear! How disappointing that I've ended up with Nora Batty tights on the last shot. This really wasn't the image I was after.

Details -
Blazer: Vila Clothes
Blouse: Jo-Ed Sophisticates
Skirt: charity shop
Belt: charity shop
Shoes: Jeffrey Campbell, California
Tights: Topshop
Pearls: Debenhams
Rings: charity shop

Linking with -
Laurie of Vanity And Me

Anna x


Summer flashback (all dressed up with nowhere to go)

I sit here writing while hailstones are bouncing off the garden by my window, hitting the daffodils as if there's a point to be made, "Spring isn't quite here yet!" maybe? A fierce gale is blowing outside and I'm sitting waiting, hoping that I'll get a call to say the annual beach-clean event this morning is being cancelled until kinder weather blesses our island shores. in the meantime I've decided to plunge deep into my draft box and bring out a lovely reminder of last summer. The all-dressed-up-and-nowhere-to-go look came about rather organically as I'll explain...

I found this elegant shift dress by Reiss in a charity shop in the early summer and thought it would be perfect for those days at work when I felt the urge to look smart. Dark blue and navy always make me look a bit pale (check out my peely-wally pins), but I'm trying to expand my repertoire of colours, so thought I'd give this a whirl. In an effort to bring some light to my complexion I've added my favourite chunky peals and that does seem to soften the dark dress. The beaded sandals (Monsoon) and clutch (Accessorize) were finds from the same thrifting session and a great ploy to lift the colour scheme too.

As the day was a bit breezy I decided I needed to add a jacket to the ensemble and this one seemed perfect. It's by Jaeger and was an absolute snip at £8.95 in a charity shop in Truro.

By the end of the day, just as Polly and I were cashing up, I remembered that I'd found a hat during one of my earlier shopping sprees. I mentioned that this might be a great finishing touch to this rather posh ensemble and here's how we finished the day -

Perhaps it can be seen as a trial run for some invitation yet to come? At least I know I've go this stashed away in readiness. My necklace was from Debenhams many moons ago, the rings are old, my watch is by Michael Kors and sunglasses are by Quay Australia.

The good news is that the Spring Beach Clean has been cancelled. And when you see the view from my kitchen window you'll understand why.

Linking with 
Laurie of Vanity And Me
Catherine of Not Dressed As Lamb

                                                 Anna x


Bring on the sparkle

I've promised sparkle and here we have the first offering. My post is a bit later than I planned today, but that was due to the terrible weather this week, right up until yesterday when it poured with rain all day long. Today as you can see was a beautiful sunny day, perfect for a photo shoot by the sea. I've had this dress since January yet haven't worn it anywhere. I'm testing out a few outfits over the next few days so that I can get your feedback about what I ought to wear to the annual island party on Friday. Last year I really pushed the boat out see here, but think that this time I want to be less of the grande dame and wear something more fun that I can dance in too.

So this is no1. Wednesday's post will feature more sequined loveliness for your delectation and Friday's yet more again - all variations on a theme. Please feel free to drop me a line with your thoughts. I love to read your comments and perhaps this Christmas countdown could be your first time to be bold enough to let me know what you honestly think. I'm still waiting for a new pair of boots which will give me another option, but I'm not sure if I'll get the chance to photograph this in time. 

Details - dress: H&M, shoes: Debenhams, tights: old, clutch: charity shop, pendant: Vivienne Westwood, rings: charity shop, sunglasses: Quay Australia.

Linking with -
Catherine of Not Dressed As Lamb
Cherie of Style Nudge

Anna x


Cream shift dress

I wasn't sure how to follow up the rather unique post from Wednesday see here, so decided to play it pure and simple. This cream shift dress was charity shopped last September and this is the first time I've thought to wear it. However, something seems to happen to me when I put on a shift, I look so formal that everone thinks I'm off to a wedding. I suppose a lot of that must be down to how I accessorise it, but a shift seems to dictate smart as far as I can see. I have another shift dress that I wore last week and I ended up looking like the mother of the bride. I'll post that another day, just to give you all a laugh. I do like a good laugh at the shots myself!

Today we open our final summer exhibition so I will look a bit different by the end of the evening. Another posh frock will be pulled out from the depths of my wardrobe along with several shoe options just to complicate matters. The bedroom always looks like carnage after this last minute rush. I usually have something in mind for the show, but it doesn't always work out right. I do have two maxi dresses that may be good, but until I try them on with all the right accessories, I won't actually know. Wish me luck and will see you with the last round up of the summer shows and the frock of the day - all to come on Sunday!

Dress by Mani (charity shopped), bag by Fleur (likewise), shoes charity shopped, rings old, necklace by Debenhams, sunglasses by Quay Australia, bangle by Kate Spade New York and rose gold watch by Michael Kors.

Linking with 
Anna x

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