What I Made The Other Week


I made that! #proud


I'm taking the mick now aren't I? But these acronyms are such fun. But no seriously, that is what I made the other week except I've only just got round to posting it now.

My friend L1 and I set a date in the diary to make our Christmas wreaths. For the last few years she has been kind enough to make mine for me but she asked if I'd like to have a go this year - why yes indeedy!

In a nutshell this is what we did.

  • Cut and condition foliage to be used on the wreath a few days in advance. This ensures the foliage is in the best condition before it is used. (More info here). You need a LOT of foliage - go outside and get raiding the country lanes.
Sorry - this pic was taken on the camera phone so is a bit fuzzy

  • Buy, gather or make the decorative bits you want to put on the wreath (I bought some fake red and green berries which I liked).
I didn't end up using the red berries.

  • Soak an oasis foam ring in water till saturated. Wrap the oasis ring in cling film to hold the oasis together and the water in - this will hydrate your foliage for the next few weeks. Then wrap the cling filmed oasis with wire to stop the cling film unravelling.

  • Make a hook out of thicker wire (an old wire clothes hanger will do) so you can hang the wreath on your door.




  • With secateurs, cut the foliage to the size you want and poke in to the oasis ring. You may need to use an implement with a sharp point to help make an initial hole if you are finding it difficult to prod the stems through the cling film. If you're using holly - you need gardening gloves - or ouch!


  • Keep turning the oasis ring round to make sure that you are creating an even shape and keep going till you're happy.

  •  Bob on some green berries. Bob on a door.

Finished.


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Last Note :

  • I decided I liked the "greenness" of this wreath and excluded the red berries. The Grumps says "it will be nice when it's finished i.e "where are the red berries?"  Each to their own.
  • Thank you L1 for your expert guidance and cups of tea!
  • Who's giving this a go next year?






What I Wore Last Night


Well I was a bit of a busy bee yesterday so I didn't have chance to take any photos of what I was wearing last night for my Christmas night in with the mums. So instead of a WIWT, I decided to do a  WIWLN. I love how you can make up your own acronyms to suit. Our Christmas night in usually consists of us ordering a takeout to have in one of the mum's houses. So not too dressy but it's really up to yourself as to how much effort you want to make. There is no pressure and I love it for those reasons. In previous years, I've worn dresses but this year, I wanted to wear jeans. Am I getting lazier and lazier? Err ... yes!

And following on from the non roaring success of the navy and pink H&M sweatshirt from the previous post, I moved on to ... a navy sweatshirt with sparkly butterflies! As you do. But I think this one works much better on me because the sequins are in "jewel" shades. Sarah left an interesting comment in the previous post to say I am a "winter" colour person and the reason why the H&M sweatshirt wasn't working on me was that it was a "summer" palette. But she did say I was one of those lucky persons who suit grey shades, icy shades ... and jewel shades. Well guess what - I have jewel coloured sequins on my sweatshirt! It's fate!



And what made me so happy with this sweatshirt? I give you the following reasons.

(1) it's 100% cotton
(2) it's failsafe navy 
(3) it has jewel coloured sequins 
(4) it's really comfy 
(5) it cost £25.99
(6) it made me crack a big smile when I put it on
(7) I get to break out my disco shoes as they kind of went with the green and bronze in the sequins ....



(8) and the vintage snakeskin clutch which I scoured Ebay for as it was just the right tone to go with the bronze/copper detailing on the disco shoes without being too matchy matchy. 

I think that's enough reasons, don't you?




I traipsed down the stairs after I got ready last night and the Grumps smiled at me rather than putting his hands over his eyes. I take that as approval - he said it was more me. Dressed up but not.

And before I headed out the door - I threw on the fur coat! 



Matalan Fur Coat, Pull & Bear Sweatshirt, Vintage Clutch, C Petula Sandals


I think it works in a kind of mish mash way. Put it this way, I was comfy and I felt like me though butterflies aren't very me but I'm kind of going with it as they are jewel coloured. Now if they had been pink, I wouldn't have ordered the sweatshirt and I wouldn't be writing this post.


Brrr! I didn't hang outside for long I tell you.


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Last Note :

  • Sometimes I get bored of wearing plain clothes and besides it's Christmas - let's wear butterflies on our chest :o)







This is the Instagram pic where the Grumps left a comment of "OMG" and put an emoji of a monkey with his hands over his eyes alongside it. Hmmm. So I guess that means he doesn't like it then. Put it this way, he didn't like my photo. Well ... I like it ... but I didn't buy it ... even though I liked it ... because .... well, it wasn't really me. But I had to try it on to get it out of my system. You know how it is - some things are just not you, but you just have to prove it to yourself. 


H&M Sweatshirt (it weighed a ton with all those pink beads on).


He liked this pic though ...


M&S Coat (old), Grey Lambswool Scarf (Ebay), Jigsaw bag (Ebay), Jigsaw PomPom


.... a bit easier on the eye methinks. Back to the greys. Back to the comfort zone. Back to me being me. I will break out at some point though.


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Last Note :

  • I felt a need to go back to a simpler style of scarf after seeing the flurry of checks around currently and decided a nice big lambswool scarf was the way to go for me. But I wanted one as big as the Acne Canada scarf but obviously didn't want to pay out the money for it. So I sourced mine on Ebay from this seller. The dimensions are similar and it is lovely and warm. Is it comparable to the Acne scarf? I don't know - I've never seen or touched one in real life :o)






Ah - tis that time of year again. Time for me to get crafty and do my bit for the school Christmas fair. I can't bake, I'm no good at organising things and I'm really rubbish at dealing with small people but I can get a little creative when required and make things. So I do what I do best - make bracelets. 

Pick a colour, any colour!


Rather than just throwing a batch of bracelets over to the school, I took it a little further by trying to make them look a little bit more interesting. I decided to go with a "Frozen" theme as I hear it's popular with the small people and also something a little Christmassy for those not so enamoured with the film and printed some little phrases on cards to accompany the bracelets.

For the blue & white bracelets, I sourced some little gummy bracelets from Ebay and added little crystal beads to them. I then created little cards to set them off with some choice "Frozen" quotes ....

The Frozen Collection


And I know blue isn't the most popular colour ever amongst young girls so I did some slightly more girly ones with the stickers of Elsa and the Frozen crew on them. These are little cotton cord friendship bracelets which you pull to adjust to size.

The Elsa & Anna Collection


And for the Christmassy collection.


The Christmassy Collection (You do know I am making these names up as I don't you?).


And then I popped them in to little cellophane sleeve to finish them off and make them easier to handle for selling  ....

All done.


The snowflake & present sequins used to decorate the little cards were a lucky find and were actually sold as table toppers which are normally used for scattering on tables at events. I picked these up whilst I was having a little mosey through the pound shop. 



And just by chance, I also happened upon a little pack of "Frozen" stickers at the same time.




I think the bracelets were quite well received ... especially by the parents who were relieved to see something other than the usual tatty teddies and unwanted toiletries donations ;o)


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Last Note :

  • I've popped a few new bracelets in the shop just incase anyone needs any last minute stocking fillers as I've had a few enquiries about some of the ones I've featured on Instagram. Happy browsing!
  • I've not actually watched Frozen .... yet.






Not the most exciting. Not the most pimptastic. Not the most eye-catching. But definitely the most practical and wearable for me!



Matalan Fur Coat, Mulberry Bag, Aubin & Wills Jumper, H&M Jeans, Converse pumps


So another little Matalan lovely. I ordered this fur coat online with a 20% discount when I spotted that they did a petite version of it a few weeks back. I actually sized up to a 12 after having tried a 12 on in store in a regular fit (there was no size 10 to try on) and thinking it wasn't that big actually. This is actually going against the norm of every other fur coat I've tried on where I've had to size down to stop them overwhelming me. In a size 12 petite, I can fit a nice cosy jumper under this with room to spare and I don't even need to take the sleeves up. And guess what - in the spirit of the previous post - there are some in store and none online!

Yes I could have gone a little crazier, yes I could have gone a little bit more luxe but hey if a plain black fur coat is good enough for Jeanne Damas, it's good enough for me :o) And yes, I may have taken a few fashion cues from this French goddess (across body bag and Converse) but hey it works for me!


Source : Pinterest 

(I traced this pic as far back as 2008 before I lost the trail, proving some looks are pretty timeless)


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Last Note :

  • Update 04.12.14.  The fur coat seems to be back online in limited sizes here









Well I don't often do this. Photograph things I spot out and about on my travels - I always feel a bit of a berk taking pics of myself prancing in front of a mirror - it's okay in the privacy of your own home but a bit weird in a shop especially on the shop floor. In addition, I also worry that the shop assistants mistake me for a retail spy or something and arrest me or turf me out of a store and that just wouldn't do would it now? Embarrasing. With a capital E. 

But whilst in Matalan yesterday, I was feeling a little braver. I went there for a specific purpose. To pick up a coat which I had my eye on and which is to be a Chrissy present from a friend and also to check out a few bits which I'd seen online. So this is a bit random but whilst in store, I spotted this ....


Fake Fur (not online)


I picked this faux fur up out of curiosity and partly because I have this thing about having to try on every fur coat I see on my travels. And it was a lot nicer than I thought. It's usually the case, when you set your expectations criminally low - the opposite always happens. And of course it's totally sold out online so I can't give you any links - I know because I've seen it online previously but it's not there now. Soddus Lawus. I put this pic out on Instagram earlier and I had quite a positive response to it. It's really quite pimp'tastic isn't it? There were quite a few in store though ... I could be tempted to do a return trip despite the Grumps exclaiming "what on earth have you got on?" when he saw the pic. Hmmm. And it must be quite eye catching ... I noticed people giving me the look up and down as they walked past me trying it on.

I did see a few handbags which looked interesting. This one makes quite a statement and is around the £20 mark from memory. And not online off course!

Leopard Bag (not online)


 .... although I'm more likely to pick up one of these little clutches which are not online either. Perfect to lift those little black outfits which so many of us will be donning over the festive period. 


Suedette Clutches (not online)


However, these envelope clutches are online but not in store (!) which I would like to have had a closer look at especially at the special offer price of £8. Both colours look good and I'm quite taken with the silver which seems to also have a hint of bronze mixed in. 




And when I win the lottery, I will have an Anya Hindmarch Valorie glitter clutch but until then ... maybe this black glitter lock clutch will do? It's always good to have something like this .... you know, just incase! Again, not found in my store but they are online. Hoorah!



And does anybody need party shoes? I wanted to see what these caged sandals were like in real life but guess what? They weren't in store! I'm also starting to see a pattern here - if it's online, it's not in store and if it's in store, it's not online. I prefer the metallic version here - there's something about the Christmas season which brings out the shiny shiny in me but there is a classic black (but doesn't look as good) too for the princely sum of £22.



And I have bought this jumper previously though I don't have any pics of me in it ....




This was going to be my Christmas jumper but I returned it on the eve of the 28 day return policy :o) I eventually passed this up for another Christmas jumper instead. Fickle me, fickle me. I do have to say it is really lovely and soft and very warm. You won't be displeased with it should you get one.

And if you manage to pick up one of these boucle boyfriend coats - they're very good for £30 and they're not dissimilar to my Topshop one which I recently bought. The teal is the standout colour out of the three colours they have (black, pale blue and teal) and is quite striking. The stock photo looks more navy, but the colour in real life is more teal. I forgot to take a photo to get a better picture and besides my phone was starting to make that annoying low battery beep to tell me it's about to conk out!



Oh and then there were the Christmas decorations whilst I was at the tills. I liked the look of these feather wrapped baubles ...



Very au naturel and muted! And see the feather glass droplet bauble below? It's £3 but there is a similar one retailing at £8 in Anthropologie currently. Spot the difference!



Oh and the one below might just be my favourite .... which I spotted online but not in store.



The Christmas stag decoration is a little more off the cuff and just that little bit more interesting than most decorations I've seen around. At £3 - it's not unreasonable when you think how much more costly it would be if it wasn't in Matalan and in a high end store. Again, I think it has a touch of Anthropologie styling about it. And if you're one of those persons who buys maybe one new decoration each year to add to a collection - this one would be a fab addition.

Anyway, I was in a bit of a rush as I really was only popping in for the Chrissy pressie. Want to know what I was getting? This little number!





Okay - not as exciting as the faux fur jacket but probably a little more me. And no it doesn't go with the jumper I have on today but you get the idea. I tried this in store a few weeks back and a lady walked by and stopped and watched me for a moment or two before saying "that looks really nice on you love". It's the kind of thing I do when I see someone trying on something and I think it looks good on them. Little things, little things but things which make a person's day or helps them make a decision.

Anyway, this was probably the most useless post ever - links to things which I didn't find in store and no links for the things which I did see in store. Random stuff like Christmas bubbles and not a whiff of a Christmas dress or outfit in sight.

I promise to do better next time! And to charge up my phone in advance.








.... so Bella Freud should be very flattered with Topshop!





And Isabel Marant should be very flattered .... with Topshop!




And Adidas should be very flattered ..... Isabel Marant!





As they say, what goes around, comes around :o)


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Last Note :

  • One day that Bella Freud jumper will be mine. It's my birth year don't you know? 
  • That Isabel Marant has done a take on the Stan Smiths does tickle me. Time she got her own back.







Hi there!


Hi, I'm Sue.

Mum to Ben & George, married to the Grumps, living in suburbia, somewhere in the north of England.

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