Metallics, maybe?

Here's another trial run for the annual Christmas party. I bought the rather fabulous silver boots in TK Maxx some time ago and have been waiting for the right moment to wear them. 

I've worn the skirt before (see here) and think I might be a bit formulaic in how I style it, but I reckon the dazzle of the metallic fabric plus pleating deem it necessary to have a simple top.

It's all about the boots for me today.

The polo neck is black and gold lurex and may be the ideal sweater to have around at this time of year as it goes with so many outfits. I fancy it could be turning up like a rash all over Christmas.

Outfit details - sweater: H&M, skirt: Sainsbury's, boots: Buffalo, sunglasses: Quay Australia, clutch and rings: pre-loved.

So, could this be my party outfit this year? I'm pleased to say that the boots are the only new thing here. I've done some Black Friday shopping and will show you that in a moment, but I'm hoping to recycle some clothes throughout the festive period too. I have lots of sequined pieces which never go out of fashion and will be trying those on this weekend to see what I can conjure up. Our party is on the 17th and I predict I'll be in a quandary right up to the last minute. The minus points about this option are - will I be too hot in a roll neck meaning I just won't want to dance? And will the new boots pinch so much that I can't dance? (Having said that, being tea-total sometimes means I just don't dance as I'm not relaxed enough anyway.)

Anyway, I've kept you waiting for long enough (Sheila) so here goes with my Zara shopping from Black Friday -

A midi floral dress has been on my wish list for ages and this ticks all the boxes.

I see this as a perfect day dress for those lunchtime drinks do's, and will work with both these silver boots or my red sock boots.

Another useful dress in green velvet with orange and purple flowers.

One pair of sock boots comes from Primark and the other from Zara...can you tell which?

The next run of shots are charity shop finds and really don't look very good on the mannequin which is probably why I've not shown them previously. The usual bed spread display doesn't work at this time of year as it's too dark. Trust me, these all look better on me.

Crazy, fluffy and turquoise, yep it's fab.

A grey denim shirt with stretch and black chiffon maxi skirt.

Vintage St Michael dress and red belt. 

Country Casuals dress with beading - useful for a show next year?

The blouse is another vintage find and the skirt is green faux suede with stretch.

Last of all is this tweed trench from Topshop which cost me all of £5.

That's just about it then folks. I'll be back on Sunday with another party offering as I search for the elusive perfect outfit. I never manage to choose a work outfit until the morning, so I can't imagine that I'll be able to do any different about this party piece either. In the meantime, do feel free to chip in with your suggestions. Was there something from last Christmas that I could be wearing again perhaps?

Are you still searching for your Christmas frock? Or are you looking for something more casual for Christmas at home? Good luck with all your shopping, and see you soon.

Anna x


We love...leopard print

Hello again, and here's another joint feature from Sasha and I. This week we styled up our leopard print coats (which actually was the easy part) and then ventured out into the brisk North wind to get some shots. Not only were we trying to get out of the wind, but we got caught in a sleety shower too. 

I've had this fur coat for over 20 years now and up until a couple of months ago it had been lost in the loft. When Sasha moved home in September Steve and I had a massive sort out and found it bundled up inside a few black sacks. As moth proofing, this had worked, but it smelt a bit musty. Dry clean only said the label. One of the downsides of living here is that we don't have a dry cleaners on the islands, meaning you either post things away or wait until your next trip to the mainland. As a stopgap, I draped the coat across one of the garden chairs on our decking while I was pottering about in the garden sorting through our evicted boxes of detritus. 

Fast forward to two days later when I came home one lunchtime to discover a note from hubby saying "Fir coat on the deck" (yes, spelt like that, such a joker). I had completely forgotten about it and in the meantime it had rained, been sunny, rained again and then another sunny day - all with my fab faux fur exposed to the elements. The moral of the story is Don't believe all it says on the label. My coat is refreshed, smells of the big outdoors and is soft as ever. I gave it a brush down and it's good as new.

This seems to be my go-to necklace of the moment, making me think I need to find a similar alternative. Conversely, I don't seem to have featured these citrine rings from Gemporia for ages.

The winter white trousers are new and also a real step into uncharted waters for me. If you're a keen follower, you'll have noticed that white trousers aren't something I do often, if at all. Anyway, I came across these in Tesco's in September and asked Sasha's advice about them. I love the wide cut and the crop length, plus the material is really lovely, very drapey and not too see through. She said yes, give 'em a go. This is their first outing and I'm aware that the challenge of leopard print plus white trousers could indeed be misconstrued as trailer park trash. By adding the black cashmere sweater and these toning brocade boots, I'm hoping to have turning this into classy winter styling. 

Outfit details - Coat: Dorothy Perkins, trousers: F&F at Tesco, sweater: M&S, boots: River Island, necklace: Du Barre, rings: Gemporia, sunglasses: Quay Australia.

Sasha's pink satin boots and gold chenille jumper give her leopard coat a modern twist that I love. It's great to see the coat styled in this playful way.

Likewise, the baker's boy hat is young and fun and suits her features so well.

By dropping down behind the sea wall you can barely notice the howling wind!

Fuchsia and satin - what could be better?

Outfit details - coat: New Look, trousers: Pretty Little Thing, jumper, boots and hat: Primark, jewellery: LVNDR.

Sasha has come across a new website where she bought this gold dipped shell pendant and also these rings. Check our LVNDR jewellery site here.

I'm on a steep learning curve being on the other side of the camera. I know I have a lot to learn, but am always keen to expand my skills so this is really good for me to have Sasha tutor me. Her background in marketing and advertising means she has a good eye for what works and what could be improved. Background, lighting and settings are such basics and yet I've been guilty of letting Polly deal with them rather than become involved. I've always thought of my camera as a point and shoot, but seemingly it's got quite a lot of useful features that I've not been aware of, therefore never accessed.

December seems to be the month when fur coats really come into their own. Not just for the glamour factor, but for warmth too. I'm bringing all of my furs out of storage so that I can get the best use of them over the next couple of months. The 5Over50's challenge for January is fur so that gives me another chance to feature something snuggly. Our group challenge for December is Christmas jumpers and has been moved to the18th, so do drop by to see how we've done with this most seasonal of items. 

In the meantime, I'm off to take some shots of the new additions to my wardrobe as well as shaking out the glitter for another trial. Velvet too is something I'm hoping to get together so maybe sequins and velvet could make an appearance together. I'm off to play with fabulous fabrics and sumptuous sequins to see what I can come up with. Have fun with your week and keep warm!

Linking with -
Catherine of Not Dressed As Lamb
Samantha of Fake Fabulous
Anna x


A trial run

Yes, it's that time of year when I start doing the big try on, getting ready for the party season. I've got a couple of parties on the horizon as well as drink do's to prepare for so I like to be ready. 

I'm still besotted with these red sock boots, so please accept my apologies if you've tired of them already. Be warned - they will be making a few more appearances! 

When I wore them for the first time (see here) I didn't need tights, but the cold weather and length of this dress mean that's not an option. I'm not sure if black is the right thing here though...Maybe plain black would have been better?

The book handbag was a prize find in Primark in London. It was a fraction of the cost of the real McCoy ones I've seen in other shops.

This must be the first red dress I've had since I was a child. It's from H&M and was partnered with the boots in an advert. I don't normally fall for the spoon fed version of fashion, but I thought it was so simple yet effective.

I thought this charity shop owl necklace was the perfect ploy for the Harry Potter book bag, and only £5 too!

Maybe this could be an option for Christmas day? I'm not sure it's dressy enough for an evening party, but again, that's just me. This is where I ask you for your opinion. I'll be popping up again over the next couple of weeks to run some Christmas outfits past you, so please feel free to give me your thoughts. You can email me if you're too shy to post a comment.

Outfit details - coat: vintage, dress: H&M, boots: H&M, necklace and rings: charity shopped, handbag: Primark, sunglasses: Quay Australia, tights: H&M.

I've just taken delivery of a box of shopping from my Black Friday splurge. I'll let you know how that goes once I've had a try on. In addition, I'm aware that I've yet to show you my shopping from London, so I maybe need to have a post where I do a round up of all that's new in my wardrobe as we hurtle towards Christmas. I'm acutely aware of how short lived this hugely hyped holiday is so I'm fighting shy of buying any more in the way of glitter and sparkle as I own quite a lot of glitzy items already. I'm currently searching for the perfect pair of black shoes that will last beyond the party season and will let you know how that plays out too. 

How are you getting on with your Christmas shopping? Did you wait until Black Friday to hit the shops? And what about your big food shop? Do you do that online or do you brave the supermarket in that last minute rush? Are you one of those very organised types who picks up something every week for months in advance? Do tell - I'm keen to hear how life plays out beyond our little island especially at this time of year. Whatever you're up to, do try to enjoy what you're doing without getting too stressed. See you soon!

Anna x


Take three colours

One of the best things about making friends within the blogging world has to be our common bond through fashion. Jacqui of Mummabstylish and I got on like a house on fire when we met up in London (see here), chatting about all our ideas and concerns on our joint blogging horizon. She told me about her rule of three; the magic number of colours that she uses to create her outfits. The idea had never occurred to me and we laughed about that too.

So here's my ode to Jacqui in yellow, green and burgundy. I suppose in this pure form, it also meets the criteria for colour blocking as I've eschewed my normal pattern play too. 

Catherine of Not Dressed As Lamb has recently posted a feature on fashion bloggers who excel at minimalist styling which got me thinking: why does minimalist dressing look so classy on these women and yet I know would look so bland on me? Apart from the obvious - they're young, slim and pretty of course! Anyway, do click the link to see the ultimate in chic understatement.

With this in mind, today I thought I take a baby step towards minimalist style by dropping down to three colours, albeit quite bold ones. I say baby steps as it's still over the top in other ways; namely the tiers on the tunic as well as the velvet trim and tiny beads. 

I will be honest with you, the idea of an entire collection of clothes that comprises of black, white and neutrals leaves me totally cold, but in the interests of a style challenge I think I may have a go. But not yet, my lovely readers! With Christmas only a month away, I have more bold colours and patterns, a sprinkling of glitter and of course, a liberal dose of sequins all lined up for your delectation.

The tunic is actually an early Christmas present from a friend. She lives in Portugal and had ordered it online to be posted direct to me. She prompted me to open it in case I didn't like it, meaning I could just send it on to her. Sorry Bo, as you can see it's rather fabulous and I'm keeping it!

And that brings me onto another style matter. I would never, never have chosen this shape of top. Tunics are just not my thing. My reasons are usually to do with the boxy shape, the lack of definition, and the focus on the bust making me look bigger than I like. However, I was so bowled over by the colour that I was happy to step out of my comfort zone and try it on. It's a lovely floaty material and it feels really feminine. I'm a convert! 

Outfit details - coat: The Vintage Boutique Collection from TK Maxx, top: Zara, trousers: Tesco, boots: pre-loved, sunglasses: Quay Australia, rings: Sainsbury's, necklace: gift, handbag: purchased in Rome, no brand.

This week I'll be linking up with -
Catherine of Not Dressed As Lamb
Samantha of Fake Fabulous

This shot captures me as I've just hung my coat up in the hedge and was waiting to see if the wind would whisk it off. 

Here's a couple of snaps taken from my office window over the past week. This view is balm to the soul. Have a great week and see you again soon!

Anna x

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