Jeans and biker jacket with Furla handbag

Hello again! I've been sooooo blooming busy since my last post, but here I am with all my news. I normally post a feature on Fridays, but that was Sasha's birthday meaning my day was filled with baking and doing the prep for her birthday tea. A lock-down birthday is a bit rubbish isn't it, but I suppose many of you will have had one of those by this stage. We seem to have overcompensated by having three days of special family meals and it really has been great fun for us all. (Death by feeding, is what my husband is calling it actually!) Friday's tea was an old fashioned birthday party with sausage rolls, bacon frazzles, cheese scones, salads, cold meats and cheeses followed by millionaire's shortbread and a magnificent birthday cake created by her cousin Zoe of Bryher Bake Box

Sasha is 32 now and like most mother's I'm amazed at how the time has flown past since those baby days. I loved being a stay-at-home mum, never missing the world of work or the social aspect thereof. 

Seen here with her cousin David who is only 8 weeks older than her, Sasha loved being the big sister to Jamie.

Sash was dog mad from the start, in fact her very first words were "a dog, a dog, a dog!" as her father's gun dogs appeared in front of our window. Sasha is training her own spaniel, Brigg, now - you can follow his progress on her Instagram page here

And so, on to the OOTD, this blue biker jacket and dotty jeans. Like lots of others on lock-down I'm wearing casual clothes most of the time. These jeans by Cosmic Jeans were a charity shop find in 2018 but I've not worn them often. Hipster jeans don't flatter my hourglass shape very well as they seem to accentuate my rounded tummy. Pairing them with my bright blue biker jacket maybe wasn't the best move either as the two barely met in the middle :(  The polo neck sweater is rather ancient as is the leather belt - both are by H&M. My black and white sunglasses are from Quay Australia.

The cute little jelly bag by Furla has been a joyful discovery of late. I seem to have spells where I have a bag of the moment and then they get stored away for months on end. I have the  bigger version of this in yellow and the small one fits inside it meaning I do forget about it in that out if sight, out of mind way. The rings are both pre-loved.

The white leather boots were a Christmas present from Steve. The brand is Besson and they came from TK Maxx. I had a similar pair of white boots (see here), but they fell apart in the autumn, after only a year of wear. I've loved how my shopping desires have been brought into sharp focus since I gave up retail therapy. My wish-lists for both Christmas and birthday (soon) were, and are, so specific and therefore satisfying to receive that their worth seems so much more than ever before. I've found I don't need to browse eBay or retail sites searching for... and that's just it - what are we all looking for? Happiness? Fulfillment? A need to simply have something new? The psychology of shopping is a complex one that's for sure. As I was putting my wish-lists together I discovered that the enormity of choices swamped me if I didn't have an exact thing in mind and it all started to feel rather pointless. As the end of my shopping ban looms large, I find myself wondering what I'll do when it comes.

Thanks for dropping by again. I'll be back later on this week and also on Sunday with my birthday post. Monday the 25th will be our Style Not Age challenge so there's lots to come this week!

                                                                                             Anna x


Sending a little happiness your way

Hello! So here we go again with our third lock-down in the past 12 months. January and Feb are my least favourite months of the year, stretching my ability to keep cheerful and fight off the blues, but hey ho, here we go! I've yet to find out if being at home during this time makes it easier to bear. What has added to the challenge however, is the fact that my husband had a minor accident at work in December and is now at home laid up with a poorly foot. Hopefully he's to have an x-ray next week so he might have a diagnosis and idea of when he'll get back to work. In the meantime, I seem to be spending a lot of time providing cups of tea, cakes, snacks and meals as well as plumping up of cushions and generally faffing around him. Does he not realise that my Domestic Goddess outfit had to be returned at the end of the festive period?

Anyway, here's a little corner of Tresco where you can soak up some happiness under this golden mosaic, the creation of Lucy Dorrien-Smith. Smith Square, in the heart of the island, is where you'll find three of these lovely pieces of art, the other two being called Peace and Love. I set up my camera, timer and tripod here the other day and it wasn't without the odd hiccup as well as funny outtakes as I endeavoured to do this outfit justice. 

Colour therapy is my usual answer to anything that ails me, hence this warm combination of orange and bottle green that were the start of this OOTD. The orange gloves by Harssidanzar were a Christmas present from Steve; they are buttery soft Italian nappa leather, lined in cashmere for heat and comfort. Jamie bought me a pink pair by the same brand and both are a really impressive quality of leather as well as being a perfect fit. How snazzy will I be this winter with these two colourful pops to jazz up my outfits! The fun fur isn't new, but is a cosy snuggle-up coat for this time of year. The brand is The Vintage Boutique Collection from TK Maxx from a couple of years ago.

Not only have I gone strong with colours, but patterns too. Fairisle and paisley print for the cardigan and shirt (both by H&M), checked Italian wool trousers by No 21 (see their sale here, wow!) and my rich brocade boots by ASOS. Nothing here is new as I'm still on my shopping ban, month 11 currently.

Jewellery-wise I'm wearing pre-loved rings. The brown leather bag with orange piping is by Gigi and was a charity shop find ages ago.

This cute diamante Scottie dog brooch was a charity shop find also from a long time ago.

Taking photos of boots while you're actually wearing them isn't as easy as I thought...

My Quay Australia mirror sunglasses reflect the tripod as I rush to fix my hair before the capture... 

I'll leave you a shot from my walk around the island yesterday. Tresco was bathed in sunshine with not a breath of wind and honestly it looked just like a spring day. How grateful I am to enjoy the big outdoors on days like this.

Take care and see you soon!

Anna x


Sparkling my way into 2021

Happy New Year!

Hello and welcome to 2021 a la Anna's Island Style! I've decided to start as I mean to go on, with lurex sparkles and wild animal print finished with these over the top yellow sunglasses. You got my memo about no shrinking wall flowers here, didn't you?

This outfit is what I actually wore to work in New Year's Eve although no-one really saw it as I had no customers at all. I packed up goods and did some admin and before I knew it, it was time to go home to celebrate with my family. It's been such a weird year that I was really happy to have an early night and just move on. I'm sure I wasn't the only one to feel that way.

The ensemble is made up from pre-loved and high street purchases from the past couple of years. The gold lurex cardigan is by H&M and was charity shopped, the black lurex roll neck is charity shopped but has no brand label, the leopard print jeans are by Zara, fave patent boots are from Topshop and last but by no means least are the new yellow sunglasses from Quay Australia which Sasha bought me for Christmas.

The gold petal ring was a present from a friend and the other jewellery is pre-loved. The cowboy belt was from H&M several years ago.

I just love these crazy yellow sunglasses. I put them on my wish list for Sasha along with a couple of other pairs and was delighted that she chose these. Wild and funky and just such a lovely cheery colour - what's not to love about them?

I've lost track of how often these Topshop cuban heel boots have appeared on the blog, but golly they've not lost their charm have they!

Many thanks to Fiona for turning up to take photos once again. Her cajoling and forthright observations make the whole thing a joy.

I'd like to send you good wishes for 2021 and hope that you stay safe and well.

                                                                Anna x


New Year's Eve party outfit for 2020

Happy New Year!

Here, as promised, is my party outfit for that longed for, but non-existent New Year's Eve party. To be perfectly honest, it's not so much longed for due to our current circumstances, but also because what's the point of a Hogmanay party if you can't kiss and hug everyone? As a Scot, in exile, we tend to make more of Hogmanay than Christmas with 24 hour parties and the welcoming of that tall, dark (coal-bearing) stranger into our homes as a sign of good luck just after the strike of midnight. In England we seem to celebrate both Christmas and New Year equally which means double the excuse for over indulgences in both food and drink!

The star of the show has to be this wonderful vintage sequinned piece which I bought from Enjoy Clothing in Truro some two years ago. The 80's top by He-Ro Industries sports a zip up back and those massive shoulder pads in keeping with that era. I do love big shoulder pads - they help to draw the eye away from all lumps and bumps that may lie below.

This is the first time I've worn this top, not that I actually went anywhere in it yesterday apart from around the corner to have Fiona take these photos. I do hope that sometime this year social occasions will re-emerge once life settles into our new normal. I would have worn this to an opening night party at the Gallery, and indeed plan to in the future.

The rest of the outfit comprises of velvet trousers from F&F Clothing and boots from Topshop.

The glitter boots tend to only make an appearance over the festive season which means that they are still looking pretty smart on this their third year of wear.

The rings are both pre-loved, matching the outfit perfectly however.

The gold mirror sunglasses are from Quay Australia.

As we enter into 2021 I'd like to say thanks for your messages, comments and emails throughout the past year. It's a constant wonder to me that I have accrued interest and followers both here and on Instagram and for that I'm very grateful. I'd like to think that this island life of mine is a happy diversion during these difficult times; a wee place of escapism where you can sit down and catch up with life in this beautiful corner of the world. I send my love out to each and every one of you and wish you safe and happy New Year!

                                                                                            Anna x


Out and About, our December Style Not Age challenge

Suddenly it's the last Monday of the month and we're back with our Style Not Age challenge - this month Hilda chose "Out and About" as the prompt for our outfits. I, for one, am happy to have a reason to cover up after consuming too many Christmas calories!

Hilda looks very snug in her cosy coat and boots (both from Primark) paired with these trendy camo leggings from F&F. Catch her full story on Over The Hilda blog. 

Emma from Style Splash looks stylish as ever in her mini skirt and fur jacket, topped off with that adorable hat. 

This tangerine jacket adds zing to Jacqui's ensemble of loungewear and heels for a look that takes her anywhere. See her back story on Mummabstylish

Gail's spin on this month's challenge is very cool - her velvet coat and faux leather Spanx leggings are an interesting mix of textures along with a dash of red to enliven the look. See more on Is this Mutton blog.

Some months I find the outfit to be the challenge, but this month it was the weather that proved to be the battle. None of my usual photographers were available either and so I was up against it time-wise when I set out with tripod in hand to find a spot out of the wind between the showers yesterday afternoon. I donned my much loved vintage woollen coat and set out in search of a sheltered corner.

I thought this backdrop would have been acceptable, but this gust of wind just about knocked my top-heavy tripod over. I managed to grab the camera as it headed downwards and decided to cut my losses and move on.

A big black cloud was looming towards me here...

...but before it hit I popped my buttons open to reveal my new Christmas sweater. This fuchsia cashmere sweater ticked all the must haves by way of colour, warmth and snuggle appeal - all from M&S (see here). Some of you may recall me saying that I'd given a very specific wishlist to my nearest and dearest this year, mainly because I'm still on my 12 month clothes shopping ban. This pink cashmere jumper was on my hubby's list. I paired it with some stretch jeans (ideal for that post-Christmas tum) by Curve Appeal, purchased from TK Maxx last year.

This rather fabulous bag is by Claudine Searle who creates bags from recycled coats and leather pieces. My son bought me this and the pink leather gloves. How very satisfying this new chose-your-own-presents idea proved to be. We all agreed to this new plan and it resulted in everyone getting useful as opposed to unwanted gifts. Hurrah!

The beaded wooden necklace was a Christmas present from a girlfriend who knew nothing of my Christmas colour scheme, but clearly knows me very well anyway. My rings are both very old. Sunglasses are by Quay Australia.

My Chelsea boots are by Office, but again are not new.

I'll be back at work again today like so many others, but it's been great to have some downtime with the family. All the frantic preparations and stresses seemed to melt away when we finally sat down together for our Christmas Eve meal. This year, more than ever, we counted our blessings for our life here on this tiny, remote island. That very feature of remoteness seems to have kept us safe this year, resulting in the Isles of Scilly being the only place in England to remain in Tier 1. However, the lure of Scilly is so great that a family from Tier 4 were apprehended by local police as they arrived by plane into the islands just before Christmas. Within the hour they were on their way back to the UK mainland from whence they came. You'll excuse me if I call them selfish. It's this cavalier, "It's not me", behaviour which could result in an outbreak of the virus within our tiny community, a community where we have no provisions for caring for the very sick in large numbers. Our tiny cottage hospital has no ICU or respirators and we have limited NHS staff within the islands. We consider ourselves more vulnerable than most. 

On a lighter note, I shall endeavour to showcase my "What I would have worn on New Year's Eve" party outfit in my next post on Friday. I've yet to decide on what level of sequins and sparkles that'll be, never mind the kind of weather I might have to contend with for some outdoor photography!

                                                                     Anna x

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