Be bold with pattern play!

Hello again!

Hi there! Did you miss me? Sorry! Life seemed to run away with me last week. I missed posting on Friday as you may have noticed. Life rarely goes to plan, as they say, but here I am again now. I'm urging you to be bold in your styling today - these complimenting prints have inspired me, helping me find some new combinations for work next week. Are you back in the workplace again? Or maybe you'll be working from home for a while longer? 

I really have no idea what I'm going to feel like when I'm back behind the counter serving customers once the island has re-opened. However, I've already decided that feeling anxious and fearful in advance will do me no good at all, and so I'm going to cross that bridge when I get to it - or better still, to use one of Polly's delightful mixed metaphors, "I'll burn that bridge when I get to it!"

Today's outfit is a mix of pre-loved and high street fashion. Sasha bought me this ornately patterned jacket (by Vial Clothes) as a Christmas present a couple of years ago, but this is the first time it's made it onto the blog. The satin floral trousers by Carolina Belle, Montreal, were from TK Maxx in 2018 and were aired on the blog last time here

The lace top is really quite old and being a charity shop find, may be very old indeed! No matter, I love its stretch lace making it an easy-to-wear fit and the cream colour is very versatile too. The ring is also a charity shop purchase.

The silver satin pumps by Kelsi add a playful touch to this relaxed look. These too are from a charity shop, but were brand new and only £8!

I fancy that the retro round framed sunglasses (by River Island) add an air of Annie Hall to this look. Do you agree? Anyway, this is outfit number one, all lined up and ready for the day job. As this is my last week at home, I'll be rushing around like the proverbial blue ar*ed fly, trying to finish all of my spring cleaning. I plan to spend some time pulling clothes together to create new ensembles for the forthcoming weeks too. For those of you heading out for your first bit of retail therapy in 12 weeks, I say "Have fun and keep safe". I've seen huge queues on TV outside Primark in major cities this morning with shoppers keeping their distance and wearing face coverings. It looks like our national hobby has returned!

I'll be back with Dress Up Friday this week - hope you'll drop by then!

Anna x


Beach days

Hello again!

How was your weekend? I've been gardening, baking, cleaning and generally being a domestic goddess all weekend. I must admit I do love being at home. I was chatting with a friend today and we both agreed that if this is what retirement looks like, then it's no bad thing. Despite being at home for 10 weeks already I've never felt bored nor can I say that I've caught up on all of my chores to the point that I can spend an entire day reading. I'm still working away on the to-do list and haven't even considered all of the hobbies I'd like to do, such as sewing projects and getting my art supplies out from the loft again. Two of my hobbies that I have been able to keep up however, are my sea swimming and beach walks.

This casual weekend wear is perfect for a walk to the beach, although the neon bright top did elicit a few comments, most of which were about needing sunglasses to look at me! I have no defence, apart from the fact that I love this pop of colour especially when worn with these tangerine crops. The top was from TK Maxx and the trousers were from New Look - back in the days when one could go shopping. Rumour has it that shopping will commence next week though...

If the talk of retail shopping makes some of you feel giddy with excitement, then I can say in all honesty that I'm not too fussed. My time at home has prompted me to look into the depths of my wardrobe to discover a more than ample supply of clothes and shoes. I did, at one point, wonder if I ought to count the number of pairs of shoes I possess and then balked at the shame it might induce. For the moment, I'm happy to say that I have enough, although the litmus test will be when I get back to work and have to find those daily outfits that tick all the right boxes ie. look good, fit well and make me feel great.

My elasticated pumps are Go Walk by Sketchers and were a happy find in the Edinburgh branch of TK Maxx when I was on my way to South Africa. They were a perfect lightweight pair of knockabout shoes for sight-seeing.

Both rings were bought at airport concessions.

My blogging friend Sheila refers to this kind of look as bookends which always makes me smile. I've been a big fan of this over the years and yet never considered it as such, although it will remain that forever now. 

In a world full of turmoil and strife I sometimes feel bad to be chugging along in my own happy little bubble. I'm fortunate to be living in a safe and peaceful environment. I wish that could be the same for all of us. 

Rest in peace George Floyd.

                                                                                      Anna x


It's fabulous Dress Up Friday!

Welcome to another edition of Dress Up Friday!

Yes, it's that time again. The joy of dressing up has been a saviour for me this week as I've been a bit washed out. My behind the scenes hobby of late is the reclamation of a piece of land within our garden that hasn't been touched for over 50 years. Totally overgrown with brambles and bracken, I thought it might be a good idea to try to clear a patch for us to grow some veg. I'm an absolute novice at gardening and OMG, I didn't realise what this would mean! Steve broke the ground for me, but I've been in charge of digging and getting rid of the network of roots and weeds some 12 inches deep. The past month has been particularly exhausting, but we've got some plants in now and the tiny allotment is shaping up. Anyway, I think I kinda overdid it recently and have been paying the price this week. 

My Friday frock was a TK Maxx buy from a couple of summer's ago. The brand is Never Fully Dressed, is 100% polyester and yet moves like silk. I've only worn it once to a Gallery exhibition and this time I swapped the self tie belt for this charity shop black stretch belt. The plastic D rings are to make it adjustable.

The statement necklace is from Topshop, £10 in the sale (not this year).

I'm pleased to showcase these yellow and black snakeskin print sandals here - don't they match the dress so well? From New Look, again a sale item for £6.

Perhaps I need to do a bit of weeding before we do another photo shoot here next time?

This will be another everyday work frock when I get back to the Gallery in due course (although the shoes may be a bit high). I'll probably opt for some wedge sandals for height and comfort. Many thanks to The Brand Ambassadors Agency for creating the Dress Up Friday campaign.

Wishing you a lovely weekend!

Anna x


5 years of blogging - a mega post!

Thanks for joining me today!

I'm amazed to think that I've been larking around like this for five years now and still you guys are here with me! Thank you so much for keeping on coming back to follow my antics, my ups and downs, my work, home and island life all wrapped up in this twice weekly update. 

Although I'm mostly known for my colourful outfits I thought it might be good to feature a more sophisticated, elegant version of Anna's Island Style today. And nothing says elegance more than the chic combination of black and white, does it? 

The bubble sleeve jersey top was purchased in February when I was last on the mainland. Apart from charity shops, my go-to high street shop is always TK Maxx and didn't fail me in its offerings. I bought this and a white version, both slight variations on this theme and equally lovely coming in at £15.99 for the white and £17.99 for the black. This one is from By Clara Paris.

I paired the rib knit top with these off white trousers that were another bargain, this time from F&F at Tesco a couple of years ago. They were in the summer sale for £5. The material is man made, but a lovely heavy weight that drapes well and is virtually crease resistant. 

Oh how my heart soars when I see these shoes! I had them packed away for the winter until recently and goodness, how exciting it was to rediscover them. I bought them in TK Maxx and the brand is Nine West. The elasticated band of black contrasting beautifully with the white leather pointed toe, plus the fact that they are all day comfortable put these in my all time top ten pairs of shoes.

The tartan clutch and rings are all charity shop buys. My black and white sunglasses are long time faves from Quay Australia.

So that's the outfit of the day, but what about the past five years? I've spent some time looking back through both my photos and blogs from this time and my first observation has to be about my personal appearance. I don't mind the ageing aspect, but it's probably no surprise ('cos I'm a woman and afflicted by the vanity gene) that I hanker after my slimmer self of five years ago. Oh golly, how I hope I knew how slim I was at that time! I certainly had an air of happiness - hopefully that was because I knew how nicely my clothes hung due to the lack of back fat, soft waistline etc. 

From July 2015, see that post here.

Another July 2015 post here.

This outfit was from September 2015 and you can see the post here. I was only five months into my blogging dairy and Polly was my photographer of that time. Oh happy days! Oh skinny days! My most popular post of 2015 can be viewed here - it's called These arms. Do you remember it? I might have been dismayed at the less than perfect arms on display below had I not written the ode to those limbs the previous year.

The votes are in and a travel post is the most read feature on my blog for 2016 - you can see that feature here. I must admit this vintage designer ballgown is one that I have such fond memories of wearing. I can't recall if Steve and I danced that evening, but I certainly floated on air all night long. 

The most popular blog post of 2017 was in response to my radio debut with Johnnie Walker on Sounds of the 70's. I've only listened to this once and can't bear to again as I sounded high as a kite! The beach shot above is from another popular feature, Ping Pong Piece from July 2017 - see it here.

In 2018 I turned 60 and tried my hand at modelling, namely with JD Williams. The Christmas campaign was one of three I did with them and was my most read feature that year - catch it here. 

2019 brought a challenge of very different kind when I decided to swim around my island home of Tresco. The resulting post was my most popular one of the year - read about my crazy escapade here.

And so, here we are half way through 2020 and thus far, my most popular post of the year is Escape from storm Ciara as featured in my February post here

I do hope you've enjoyed this whistle stop tour of the past five years of Anna's Island Style. If you're new to the blog, then this may provide a wider viewpoint of what may initially appear to be a fashion blog, but the brushstroke is broader; effectively it's my online diary. 

And finally, a thank-you to my readers, old and new, for without your feedback, emails and stats I wouldn't be able to gauge how I was doing. It's as much a pleasure to share my island life with you now as it was when I started five years ago. Will I still be blogging in another five years? Who knows. But in the meantime, thanks for joining me on my colourful journey!

                                                                            Anna x

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