Sunday, 24 February 2013

Clutter busting

My wardrobe tidying exercise is progressing. Slowly.  I sometimes have a hard job letting go of stuff I no longer wear, and coping with the 'what if' or 'just in case' scenario.

I found  a good blog today which I intend to explore further, but a few of the posts I read certainly struck a chord with me and buoyed up by that, I intend to be ruthless.  

I have been quite ruthless, for me, today. I spent a good couple of hours listing stuff on ebay, and I only took one thing off again. (Normal practice for me: I 'talk it up' and then make it sound so good I wonder why I am selling it.)  I've probably told you I'm indecisive... better not mention I sometimes wonder if I know my own mind?!

In other progress, I bought some lavender sachets and hanging cedar things from Lakeland. These will be very nice once I have a cleared out, organised space in which to hang them :-)  Some may say 'procrastination'; I say 'forward planning / motivation'. 

A quick outfit pic from yesterday. It was 'minding the parents' day so I threw on some old things (well the top half is/are, more of the bottom half later...) and was pleased with the ancient Jigsaw cardigan I discovered. See - there is a reason why I hang onto stuff..... sometimes.

I decided to buy both the River Island jeggings and the Topshop Jamie skinny jeans from my post the other day, mainly because I am useless at deciding. But also because they both felt really good. Even 5 year old agreed with me on that point, but then - he is apt to say anything if he thinks it will get him nearer M&S and the obligatory 'Percy Pig' sweets (treat for schlepping around very boring shops with Mummy).  

I wore the jeggings yesterday, and again today, though I did have an alarming super-muffin moment this evening. Just in the nick of time as well, I was about to tuck into a large pizza.  We'll gloss over that  however, and declare the jeggings a success anyway. 

My new rule of thumb - if you want to wear something straight away / keep wearing it, that's a good sign.

Toast knitted tunic
Navy blue Jigsaw silk / angora cardigan (v old)
River Island navy blue 'Molly' jeggings (new)
Topshop boots (old)

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Pea green and paisley..

...the two trousers I'm blogging about today :-)

First up - the Zara 'pea green' trousers I bought last August in the sale. Worn again today for the first time since late last summer as I had a feeling that the day might be quite springlike and it seemed appropriate to go with a 'green' theme. Springlike mood quickly dashed on exiting the house and having to scrape ice off of the car... >:-(

Zara green trousers
White Company navy short sleeved sweater
Zara navy t shirt
Joules blue / beige / green print silk scarf
Mulberry Maggie jade green bag

Looking at the above photo again, they look a bit baggy and (vom) 'boyfriend' like for my liking. This is because I have lost weight since last summer, which is good, but if I look like I'm sporting the boyfriend style, of which sadly I am not a fan (not yet anyway, she says, leaving room for a future volte face), I may have to attack the doughnuts.  I hails from Summerzet and we are slow to 'get' these modern new fangled ideas.

Next as promised, a picture of the Zara navy paisley print trousers I bought the other day in Covent Garden ( a whole week ago in fact...)

I really love these. The fit is perfect for me, and strangely, although I am far from tall, I always find the length of Zara trousers is perfect for me, but I have heard many people bemoan the fact that Zara jeans are too long...?!  They also have a really nice close fitting shape to the leg.

True to form in my photo you can discern neither colour nor print - so I've included a close up below to show the print - which makes it look lighter and more washed out than it is*...but hopefully you get the general idea.
[*Will I ever take a decent photo...? (bangs head in despair!) ]

I managed to sneak a quick trip to the shops today, in the guise of giving 5 year old son a 'ride on the {park and ride} bus - which he loves. Didn't have a lot of time - or frankly, with a 5 year old in tow, inclination - but managed to check out two pairs of jeans.

  • I am in the market for a new black pair and tried the Topshop high waisted Jaime skinny jeans in black which were a nice fit and good thick but soft denim.
  • Then went to River Island to investigate the good old 'Molly' jeggings, and found a navy pair which were equally soft and well fitting (thinner fabric though, which may sag??)  What to do?

Bought neither today (amazing willpower) as I have a 'window' tomorrow in which I could return, so I thought I'd sleep on it.

--> Any thoughts, experiences or advice on either welcomed!

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Wish me luck, I'm going in

...into the decidedly non-minimal area that is my wardrobe, that is.

I have decided once and for all to separate the wheat from the chaff. A radical approach will be employed - i.e. emptying everything out and only replacing the items I actually want. Simple really! In theory. In practice I'll probably still be submerged come Easter.

When it comes the the freestanding chests of drawers it (my simple plan) got complicated:  remove the whole piece of furniture, then the contents, then replace contents and furniture, or keep the furniture and tip out the contents, thereby messing up the shrine that will (haha) be my wardrobe come tomorrow... or some halfway house / combination? Here my weary brain got frazzled and I fell asleep (late last night when I was planning this task, as you do...)

A quick picture of what I have been wearing today, naturally just about to change into skank outfit (aka leggings) for the big chuck out.

Boden midi skirt
Primark grey vest
Zara loose cardigan
White Company reversible snood
Primark faux suede wedge boots

Monday, 18 February 2013

The winners, the losers and the ones that got away

Following on from my reflective theme, more thoughts on the successes and failures of my purchases over the past few months. In the somewhat muddled style that is no doubt my signature - here goes:

What I bought and regret returning

  • White Company navy grosgrain trim blazer. Yes it was too £££ but I still miss it. A classic.

What I regret buying (and keeping)

  • H&M biker style jacket. An odd one this. In theory it's great. In theory it's versatile. And odder still, in reality I have worn it. However, it's just not really 'me'.
  • Topshop black ladder stitch sweater. Yes it was reduced. Yes that's probably why it's sat unopened in the packet for the last 5 weeks.
  • White company scarves (grey and beige) - lovely but in hindsight they were utterly superfluous.
  • White company navy dress. (See above.)
  • H&M hessian sack like dress. Sort of OK I suppose, so it only just scrapes into this category. But I am stymied with coat wearing - unless I go for full-on long greatcoat style. It pokes out underneath anything else and looks very peculiar.  On it's own it's just about passable (though still undeniably sack like. There are days however when sack is good - so it's earned its place.)

What I almost bought but am glad I didn't (see also: what I did buy but am glad I returned)

  • Topshop round toe low heeled shoes. Simply the most hideous item I've seen in a long time.
  • Leopard print sweater from New Look. I salute anyone who can make Leopard print 'work'. They are a  better woman than me. 
  • Topshop faux Ostrich phone cover. Cheap and looked it. New motto when it comes to tat: avoid avoid avoid.

What I bought and am glad I did

  • Coated skinny jeggings
  • Topshop Acne-a-like boots
  • White Company poncho
  • Pure collection snood
  • H&M long v necked sweaters in bronze and navy - so so useful.

What have I learnt?

As much as I will ever 'learn' anything.....

1. Buy what I love; (NB This is not necessarily the same as 'buy what is useful / practical' - but if you love it you will wear it!)
2. Ignore the naysayers; and 
3. Trust the good old 'gut'.

Sunday, 17 February 2013

A review of Winter and looking forward to Spring

Since I've been blogging I suppose I have (out of necessity) had to focus more on what I actually adorn dress myself in. This led me to think back over what I have most enjoyed wearing and had most use of during the winter months.

I am a strange creature - I dislike warmer weather, but am almost as grumpy when it's very cold. I reason however, that when it's cold you can at least dress up warm and jump up and down like a loony to raise the body temperature - whereas in warmer weather there's little option (for me) but to melt and perspire (and growl).  My ideal weather is a mild autumn day.

Anyway, enough of the seasons / weather.  My award for most useful / most worn / most enjoyed and best value on a cost per wear (or any!) basis this winter has been..............................

the Pure Collection biscuit coloured snood.

It's so soft, warm and comfortable and the shade is perfect for me. I  have been wearing it as a kind of unattached polo neck over all manner of items, and it hasn't precluded the wearing of a finer/ drapy scarf on top - good news for me as I have so many to get my wear out of!

Now that I am a bona fide Pure Collection customer I have received a lovely 'bound' catalogue from them, which is pure temptation. It sets out one beautiful item per page and I already have a few of them on my wish list for spring - top of the list is this cobalt blue fine gauge sweater.

It would look good with these navy blue paisley print skinny jeans from Zara (purchased a couple of days ago) which have already had compliments - pics of me wearing them to follow.

Not a great photo... what else have you come to expect ;-) - but I can't see them on the website.
The above were bought on a lovely trip to Covent Garden - not a shopping trip - but I went to the Royal Opera House to see Eugene Onegin and happened to have some free time on Long Acre beforehand. The music was wonderful and the opera very poignant.  The waltz I cannot get out of my head - but that's fine by me, it can stay there as long as it wants!

A few pictures from recent days:

Pretty blouse from New Look - was returned though as too impractical (see through) for me, and a tad fiddly. Not returned without a tinge of regret however - knowing me I may re-purchase!

  • New Look Molly Lace blouse (with Primark camisole worn underneath)
  • New Look Khaki soft skinny jeans 

The ever present snood - with it's runner up - the poncho. This has been a very beige season. And spring (for me) is all set to be very navy - watch this space.
  • New Look khaki skinny jeans
  • H&M long line beige/bronze sweater
  • White Company cashmere poncho
  • Pure Collection cashmere snood
  • Topshop boots (old)
(Apologies for brevity of post and lack of pictures - but my PC is on a go-slow and taking about 6 years for a page to 'turn over' - it's driving me mad!)

* * * * *

Oh.... and PS

What's all this nonsense about 'boyfriend jeans'?  (a) they look awful on (they really do) and (b) they are just any old jeans turned up as far as I can see / tell...  How is the fit different?
Call me a simpleton but is this not a case of 'Emperor's New Clothes' if ever there was one....?!

Thursday, 7 February 2013

The beginning of the end?

I've only been blogging since July, barely 6 months.

I won't lie, I've had a rough time since mid December. I can't go into details here as it's quite personal, but my self esteem took a battering.

But even so I feel pathetic. I am lagging so far behind the rest of you. I have no idea even what to look for should I have time to go shopping. I seem to spend most of my time talking to mental health / other health teams / at fracture clinics / ordering & collecting medication / running two households...

I am now a carer for my elderly parents, mother has dementia as well as a broken arm at the moment. Dad has Parkinson's disease. I am still working. I am not sure the time excuse 'washes' however, as I am sure I would fine time to shop / take an interest in my wardrobe if only I had the energy.

I am not by nature a quitter though - so will fight the urge to throw in the towel.

My blog may take a diversion into the realms of rambling about work / life / everything else balance - but bear with me - I can't put up with this state of affairs for long - never mind anyone else!

I am sorry for this exceedingly pathetic post - but thought I should show up and write something!
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