Hush dress and H&M sock boots

Hello again! How are you and how has your week been? It's been another busy week at work, which is great as the time has just flown by. Weather-wise, it's been a mixed bag of sunshine and fog making the job of getting photos together for the blog interesting to say the least. My good friend Fiona has stepped to the fore, helping out with some end of day sessions which has been great. I know I promised to share the newly-found summer jackets, but this summer dress seemed too lovely not to feature. 

The animal print dress is by Hush, a brand that I hadn't come across until last summer when a customer walked in wearing this exact dress, sparking an in depth grilling from me. I tracked one down online in the summer sale and have worn it again a few times this summer. Today I've paired it with my red H&M sock boots, which gives it a funky edge that garnered me quite a few compliments. Much as I'm not averse to buying high street brands, I do like to style them in my own particular way.

I'm suddenly very aware of the fact that we're hurtling towards the end of September and I still have quite a few summery outfits I want to show you as well as a beach shoot Steve and I did on St Martin's last weekend. We visited Great Bay for a picnic and also managed to take three variations on my beach outfit too. Anyway you'll see those in due course, although I'm not sure if that will be before or after the summer jackets...

The trapeze dress in pink and red zebra stripes with hankerchief hem and side splits is cool and airy, perfect for a hot day in the gallery. In fact, I did start the day off wearing a trouser suit and a long sleeved blouse, but by lunchtime it was simply too hot to bear. I often finish my lunch hour but doing a quick change due to the weather. 

I thought this Topshop tribal beaded necklace was a great partner to the dress, along with two pre-loved resin rings in tonal hues. My sunglasses today are by Radley London. Did you notice the animal print theme continues with these too?

I suppose today's look could be my first forray into transitional dressing between summer and autumn. My sock boots are much loved and do add an element of joy in what might be otherwise seen as the end of summer. I'll be squeezing every last drop out of these golden days of this, my favourite time of year. I'm sure the internet is full of the latest autumn fashion, but I'm not in any hurry to follow suit!

So, here we are, on the brink of the weekend yet again and the question is, what will you be getting up to this weekend? Much as I'm taking a break from retail therapy, I'm very aware that I would normally be taking a week off work at this time of year and be treating myself to bit of clothes shopping within that time. Will you be making your first autumn purchases this weekend, and if so, what are you looking for? Please share all the details - if I can't shop then at least I can enjoy hearing about your shopping. 

Have a lovely weekend!

                                                                                       Anna x


VE Day and Dress Up Friday

Happy VE day to you all!

Hello and welcome to this Dress Up Friday feature which gives the slightest of nods to VE Day. My washing line is currently sporting everything of mine that is red, white and blue leaving me with only this tiny purse by Lulu Guiness to tie in with the celebrations. Street parties acorss the country have been cancelled (like ours) or scaled down due to restrictions, but coverage on TV and the radio is comprehensive and is an insight for us into a war where the enemy was visible and impacted massively on the world at that time too.

You may enjoy the irony of the fact that I hung everything out dry this morning and since then it's rained long and hard! The forecast is for an improvement for later so it may all be dry again by dinner time.

I embraced the two tone nature of this stylish M&S dress by adding one pink and one red sock boot (H&M) for a quirky touch today.

The round sunglasses (Radley) and long chain add a 60's vibe to the outfit. Bangle and red ring are pre-loved, the pink ring was a gift.

The mesh tights are a good soloution to the changeling period between spring and summer when legs may still be a rather whiter shade of pale.

Sorry to dash, but I've got some baking to do for our little family get together later. A rich chocolate cake is in the oven currently and I'll be making a tray bake of roast new potatoes, chicken pieces, chorizo, onions and peppers for dinner. We'll be toasting the celebrations with some Prosecco and finishing with cheese and crackers. I hope you're managing to hook up with family even if it's only virtually!

Until next time, take care!

Anna x


Dressing up Friday

Hurrah for Friday!

Thanks for joining me for my first #dressingupfriday. Recently I've noticed some other bloggers and Instagram friends making an effort to dress up on Fridays and thought it might be fun to join in. As my husband has said before, "My wife will get dressed up for the opening of an envelope". Indeed that's about as much excitement that's happening in my life (and probably yours) at the moment. 

We took these shots last weekend, but the weather was cloudy with milky skies and ever changing light. No two photos had the same tones, but we just had to make the most it. The most important thing was surely the punchy colours and over-the-top frills that lifted this outfit out of the ordinary. The chiffon blouse is vintage, the skirt second-hand (it was a ridiculous bargain at £3) and the bubblegum pink sock boots are from H&M. I've worn all of this before, but not together which makes me wonder why as I love this colourful combination. The glittery waistband of the skirt could be mistaken for a belt but is actually just a stretch waistband.

I suppose I could have called this post "All dressed up with no-where to go" which I'm sure would resonate with many of you at the moment. I fancy that we're all tiring of lolling around in our joggers/PJ's as we sink further down that rabbit's hole known at Netflix. I've succumbed to that trance-like existence some days, but am fighting back now. Indeed, my next door neighbour Kate wowed us all last night when she turned up in her posh pink frock and zingy orange shoes to take part in the weekly clapping for carers. I clearly missed a trick there and also didn't have my camera to hand to capture her deliciousness! 

I'm pleased to report that today's to-do list is almost done: daily exercise, hand washing - all the way to the bottom of the laundry bin, hand sewing repairs x 3, hanging a photo montage with dodgy fixings, blog work and finally some hoovering meaning I'll be finished in time for dinner, hurrah!

My jewellery is a mixture of pre-loved and pieces that were gifts from friends.

My son bought these boots for my Christmas a couple of years ago and I've worn them regularly ever since. The trend for sock boots may well be over, but that makes no difference to me.

The gold coloured chain was another present as were the Radley sunglasses.

I'll be back on Monday with the monthly feature from our Style Not Age Collective so do please pop back to see what we've all been up to. In the meantime, I'll leave you with a lovely shot taken from just outside my house the other evening. Another moment when I stopped to count my blessings.

Stay safe everyone and take care!

Anna x


Bright pink jacket and leopard trousers

My homage to Greetje

Hello my lovely readers! Today, I'm linking through to my blogging friend Greetje who posted her pink and leopard print outfit recently, inspiring this offering of mine. Greetje's blog No Fear of Fashion is a weekly highlight for me and many others, a round-up of her week, featuring fashion and friends amid her busy life. I've linked back to her ensemble to see what sparked me off. The blogging community has supported me from the start of Anna's Island Style and more than ever we are pulling together to help each other maintain this ray of light within these dark times. Do please swing by to read her posts - she is classy and stylish and has always been kind and generous as a friend.

This is another nothing new outfit today, something that sits well with me currently. As we're all staying at home, then it's a no-brainer to be searching through our closets to create new outfits from our existing clothes. This ties in with my wish to buy less and recycle more this year. I'll admit I have however bought a few new bits and pieces over the past months and will gradually feed them into the blog when I fancy.

Steve was my photographer of the day on this blustery corner of the island. We're using the Fire Engine shed as our backdrop which is also a bit out of the way from other people too - a new consideration for us. Steve meets me from work and we capture shots on the way home, complying with the new lock-down. Even in our tiny island community we are shutting up shop and keeping out of harm's way. 

And so, on to the outfit - the pink trench is from Topshop (pre-loved), jumper is by Primark, jeans are from Zara (last year), belt from H&M (old) as are the boots. 

I'm wearing my old and much loved chunky pearl necklace which was from Debenhams, adding a touch of glamour to the mix. And yes, another new pair of Radley sunglasses too. They still have a sale on so you could stock up ready for those sunny days when you're out taking that bit of daily exercise.

My rings are both old and pre-loved too. I'm a bit sorry to see the wear and tear showing on this belt now. I love the ornate buckle and will be sad to let it go, but I expect it's going to wear through at some stage.

Long live my sock boots - every single pair! The trend has been and gone, but I love how elegant they are and make me feel, so I'll be wearing them until they too fall to pieces.

A few days ago I had cause to stop and consider the value of posting my blog during this national crisis. I came to the conclusion that if we're all having a bleak, difficult time, then maybe showing my outfit of the day isn't so much as shallow as a lift for those needing a distraction from the reality of the moment. I do hope that you've enjoyed this feature today and would love to hear your thoughts.

Remember - stay home and save lives x

Anna x


Chiffon and tweed on a breezy day

Hello lovelies, how are you?

Today's outfit is one that I've been waiting for the right opportunity to wear. However, as no special occasion came along I decided to showcase it for you anyway. When spring arrives and the gallery re-opens for another season I know I'll get the chance to wear this. In the meantime it's had an airing or should I say a blow-through!

The dress is a gorgeous vintage piece that I've had for years; the label states Borghese by Toplet. I chose it for the vibrant chiffon in this giant floral print. It has a fitted bodice with a drop waist, unlined chiffon sleeves with bows at the wrist and bright red lining. The lining was the obvious reason for me to add my beloved sock boots (old, from H&M). 

I love to dress up as you'll know, but I'm also aware that sometimes I might look a bit overdone (aka wearing fancy dress) for everyday life. To this end, I decided to add tweed to the uber feminine frock which gave it a more grounded appearance. Still head turning, but not so alarming I hope.

I love the odd buttons on this second-hand jacket by Joules, in fact that's what drew me to it in the first place. The gorgeous floral lining was a bonus find when I went to try it on. If you know the brand, then you'll understand how beautifully made their pieces are, finished to such a high standard with quirky details like these buttons as well as velvet and ribbon trim. Jewellery-wise I'm wearing preloved rings and my gold chain necklace from Primark. Sunglasses are by Quay Australia.

A sunny day, a billowing dress, castle ramparts and pure white sand with azure water beyond - what a joy this shoot was. Steve did the honours, taking time out on a Sunday afternoon to heckle and tease, getting the best out of me for your delectation. 

The previous day it had been blowing and absolute gale, so much so that I couldn't have stood in the same place safely. My walk with Fiona past this castle was a hoods-up-against-the-storm-and-rain kind of day with no chance at all of any blog photography.

Apologies for the erratic nature of my posting of late. I've decided that I can't afford to be a slave to the schedule at the moment and am simply posting what I can, when I can. I think it's better to be sharing something that I feel is worthy rather than forcing myself to post on specific days regardless of the content. I do hope you agree.

Until next time, have a super week!

                                                                                  Anna x


My pre-Christmas rush

Thank you for taking the time to visit my lovelies!

Is it bedlam in your house at the moment? Oh my goodness, well it's madness with us, that's for sure! In the past 24 hours I've -
  • Made my first batch of Christmas fudge
  • Packed up all my Christmas presents, including said fudge and got those off in the post.
  • Had an hour's power walk as part of my daily exercise routine and effort to drop 5lbs before Christmas (1.5 to go...)
  • Written all of my Christmas cards, ready for posting tomorrow
  • Cooked a roast dinner
  • Done three loads of laundry
  • Got up and gone to work
  • Made a casserole in my lunchtime
  • Made the Christmas dinner gravy a la Jamie Oliver - this get ahead recipe is well worth the effort (even if you have to do it after a day at work!)

On the blogging front however, I'm constantly playing catch up. It's taken me a week to get this outfit in front of a willing photographer (thank-you Steve!), but the weather was quite a challenge. The wind-swept look was hard to avoid, even here at Old Grimsby which was the most sheltered spot we could find in my allotted five minute slot.

Just recently you may have seen this pea coat by Kew159 (see here) and since then it's been on my mind to make the most of this flattering longer length jacket. Although it's not cosy, it's just so pretty that I knew I could layer it up to make it wearable at this time of year. The shaggy sweater supplies warmth to the outfit and the jacket adds style. Do you agree?

I hope to bring this outfit into play over the festive period, perhaps to wear to a drinks party. We're hosting a couple of drinks parties at work over Christmas and New Year so this may well make an appearance. 

The fluffy pink sweater came from the retro shop "Enjoy" in Truro. My midnight blue velvet trousers were £1 from a charity shop which I customised by cutting off the bottoms to make them into crops and then adding some beading trim and flowers that I'd scavenged from an old lace and beaded vest top. See the post about that here.

The star of the show today however, has to be this fabulous pre-loved multicoloured handbag (£11) that I found recently during my shopping trip to London (here). I adore the sweater and bag together, but annoyingly I did also have my new pink leather gloves inside the bag, ready for the shoot, but forgot to flash them at the right time. Once back home I found them - doh! The large flower ring and bangle were both gifts from friends and the jewelled ring was £1 from a thrift shop. The oversized pearls are old now, but were from Debenhams.

The pink sock boots were my Christmas present from Jamie last year. They're from H&M, and yes are the exact same pair as my red ones. My passion for these still burns bright.

And this is me, striding off to the next challenge that awaits. Don't bother calling me Superwoman yet - by tomorrow I'll probably be sobbing as some tiny problem swamps me, bringing me to a standstill! Balance in life somehow always manages to elude me ...

                                                                                    Anna x

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