Friday, 19 January 2018

Friday Five : 19 January 2018

Go me! Go me! Go me! Another Friday Five!

Friday Five (1 of 5) Spring has sprung.

I know it hasn't really and it's actually freezing but I'm looking ahead because those warmer days are coming - I can feel it in my very cold bones. And the looking ahead basically amounts to me buying this little summer top from Topshop. It's one of those cute little numbers which you wear with jeans and tan sandals whilst swinging your little wicker basket bag. Indulge me. Anyway, it was in the sale, it was pretty and it's my kind of thing. The pink cardigan, I've actually tried on in M&S and it's soft and cosy and I want it. The lovely dusky shade will work nicely come the lighter days. The sunglasses? Well I've had my eye on these for a while - I really like the pinky beige frames and I do love my existing H&M sunglasses - more so than my more expensive Whistles ones. The tan sandals I bought last year when I found them reduced in store but they have reissued them again this year, grab them whilst you can - they're pretty. And I had to put that bag in. I love it.

Friday Five (2 of 5) Amazon Dash.

It is what it is - a button. For Catlit. Check out the other buttons here.

I don't story very much on IG but if anybody did catch any of my stories, they may have seen the one where I did an unpacking one on a 20kg bag of Catsan cat litter that the hubs had ordered for me. Who says romance is dead? Anyway, when that started to run low, I asked him if he could order me another bag from Amazon (because it's a good price on there and delivered to your door free if on Amazon Prime). He did but he also put in an order for an Amazon Dash button for the Catsan. What's this you ask? It is a wireless button that you keep in an appropriate place (next to the cat lit in my case) which you press when you find you are running low and more supplies are despatched immediately for next day delivery! How cool is that? I will never run out of cat lit again! Hallelujah! And it isn't for just cat lit you know, there are a whole variety of goods that you can get buttons for. It costs £4.99 per button but it get's knocked off again when you place your order for your delivery. I did think the hubs was a bit bonkers when he first suggested it to keep us stocked up on our supplies of Earl Grey tea but when it comes to 20kg bags of cat lit - it really makes sense. This is great for mums of babies - think of the boxes of nappies you don't have to lug in and out of the car! 

Friday Five (3 of 5) Coming up Roses

Nail Colour : Chanel Rose Confidential

The other week, I bought a bouquet and there were a few roses in it. Out of the six roses, there were two which had done the head droop thing. Now I put those two to one side but couldn't quite bring myself to bin them and thought, I need a pin to prick round the base of the head or something like that to release some air or to let some air in (can't remember the deets) but do you know what, I couldn't be bothered to go upstairs to get a pin. How lazy am I? So I cut a bit of the bottom of the stems, plunged them in to a couple of inches of boiling water (out of the kettle - I'd just made a cuppa) and kept them there for 10-15 seconds. Then I popped them into some cold water and prayed I hadn't killed them. As it was, they perked up and are still going strong a few days later. It's probably a bit like electric shock therapy but for plants. I also use this trick for hydrangeas when they look a little peaky.

Friday Five (4 of 5) Skirting around.

Grey Sweatshirt (Gap - old)
Skirt (Cameo Rose at New Look - similar here)
Converse (here)

I quite like a nice floral midi. I got one last year and I was surprised how much I liked it especially worn with a sweatshirt and trainers (above). I liked it enough to think about getting another for the summer - I'm currently debating on this one below. It's remarkably similar to the one Alexa is wearing don't you think? :)

Friday Five (5 of 5) Onion Goggles

George's swimming goggles coming in useful.

I went for brunch with the hubs last Sunday and we browsed around some shops and in one of them I found a pair of onion glasses. Yes, you read that right - onion goggles. The purpose of these is to stop your eyes watering when you peel onions. They are essentially goggles with a bit of foam underneath to prevent the onion odour from irritating the eyes. This reminded me of the time I was asked if I would peel something like five bags of onions for the annual cricket gala. Oh the glamour. And the tears. I did it though and do you know how I got through the pain barrier? I wore swimming goggles.  Same principle - stop onion odours from getting to the eyes. Swimming goggles work. Or you could just buy the Onion Goggles.


Last Note :

  • The coriander is still hanging on in there on the window sill (four weeks and counting).

Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Back to Boho

Happy flowers

I know, I know, I'm talking boho summer tops when we're still in January and yesterday was Blue Monday whatever that was all about and how it was meant to be a mega depressing day (who thinks all this stuff up to give us more reason to feel bad in January anyway) but it wasn't a bad day for me. For one, I bought a huge bunch of roses for £4 and that put a smile on my face. I don't actually buy flowers all year round especially towards the end of the year when there are no good flowers apart from lilies and roses and so I buy virtually nothing. When January comes forth, I start again with the tulips and hyacinths and then move on to peonies and then hydrangeas and then I stop. And now I'm waffling when what I wanted to say was the second good thing that happened was I spotted a couple of nice tops in River Island - a shop which is not my normal stomping ground.

Anyway, I found two tops. One I knew about already after spotting it on Chantel's IG stories and the other was just pot luck and hanging up with it. I took both tops in and tried. I could have bought both, I didn't need both, I just bought one.

First top was the Dodo Bar Or inspired one which was the one I went in to store to seek out. 

Again a true size 10 fit and this one was more a straight up and down shape. The detailing is good and neat and excellent for the price. The sleeves are not too billowy which make it a little more wearable for some of us small folk who seem to look like we're being overtaken by balloon sleevage. The elasticated hems on the sleeves give the option of being shrugged up comfortably without looking bonkers and wrong. I've got a way with words - can you tell?

Anyway, top two was this quite classic cream smock style top - very me for the warm months. 

Would you believe it?
Not online!

Not too see through either and has a nice swing to it and the bib detail seems to sit on a good part on me  i.e. it doesn't make me look "preggers" which some smock style tops have a tendency to. I like the little pom pom detailing on the hem and thankfully they didn't do sequin overload which makes it so much more wearable in my eyes. I liked it on first try on. I'm in a size 10 and this is true to size and sits well on the shoulders and the sleeves are not tight or restrictive. Infact they are full length but I've just shrugged them up slightly - I have a thing with overlong sleeves -I don't like them.

I actually thought I was going to go for top one when I took both tops in to try but I bought top two. And now I have to return it because as luck would have it - da da dah - Grazia have presented me with a River Island discount code today which I shall deploy on said blouse again. And whilst I'm there, I might have to check these culottes out which I didn't see in store (was a teeny store admittedly) but they also do it petite!

And to make up for the fact that you can't check out that second top online, I thought I'd pop one up for those who like a bit of Broderie Anglaise prettiness. Gah - if only I could do high necks!


Last Note :

  • Grazia discount code to get 20% off is GRAZIAJAN18 till Monday 22nd January. Have fun!

Friday, 12 January 2018

Friday Five : 12 January 2018

Hi. Long time no blog. But old habits die hard so I'm back to what I do best - having a little witter on my Friday Five. Just easing myself gently back in. Hope you all had a good Christmas by the way - see, it's been that long!

Friday Five (2 of 5) Sales Bag Bagged

Pieces Pcjase Leather Bag (here & here) & Jerome Drefuss Bobi Bag (here)

Some time before Christmas I spotted a bag which I thought was a bit of a ringer for the Jerome Dreyfuss Bobi bag. I kept my eye on it and even thought about asking for it for Christmas but I decided to play the waiting game and sit it out and hope it would hit the sales. It did and it came in at half the original price. I bought it. And it's a tenth of the price of the Jerome Dreyfuss. Winner winner, chicken dinner.

Friday Five (2 of 5) Bad Hair Days

When my hair was behaving better.

Over the last couple of months I've had a bit of a static problem with my hair. It's been pretty bad and I've had some serious Ken Dodd moments exiting changing rooms after a try on session. It's probably down to central heating and cold air and all that gumph I've googled but I've found that  having a little hand cream in your handbag and putting just a smidgeon on your hands so it sinks in and then smoothing down the flyaway bits helps. That's the flyaway bit, however, my hair has also been a little flat of late and I've resorted to washing every day to put the bounce back in. The other day, I thought I'd try the Phillip Kingsley Instant Beach Texturising Spray which I got as a sample in one of the M&S Beauty Boxes. This has actually been the best thing I've tried so far - my hair has retained some volume for more than a day and best of all - little to no static and I tried on five jumpers in M&S so it's been well and truly tested. This is good if you like having the bed hair look (aka too lazy to brush).

Friday Five (3 of 5) Coriander

Three weeks later (sounds like a movie title doesn't it?)

The hubs bought a bunch of coriander from the Chinese supermarket about three weeks ago. He decided to put it in a glass of water on the window sill instead of putting it in the fridge which is what I'm inclined to do. I moved it from the glass to a prettier vessel for aesthetic reasons (and gave the ends a little trim) but pandered to his whim. The coriander has been there three weeks so far and I just take what I want from the bunch when I need it. The hubs also asked me to credit him with this addition to the Friday Five this week. 

Friday Five (4 of 5) Hyacinths Season

There's always one isn't there? That one on the right!

Florist Assistant : Chloe Bowie the Fierce

Yes, it's hyacinth season again in Aldi and I've bought some and I'd forgotten they do the floppy head keel over thing until they did the floppy head keel over thing. The thing behind that is that their heads are too big to be supported by their stems and after a bit of googling last year when it occurred - apart from tying string around them to try and "bunch" them together a bit, an alternative suggestion I came across was to stick a wire up the stem. I remembered this and tried it with a wooden skewer instead like you have for your kebabs (cut to right length) and it seems to do the job. Winner Winner. Roast Beef dinner. 

Friday Five (5 of 5) Better Late Than Never

The Kooples Parka (A/W16)
Selected Femme Jumper (sold out but cream & grey version here)
Zara Jeans
Ugg Kristin Boots (best price here)

Remember how I don't like to wear things straightaway? Well last year at the beginning of the year, I blogged that I received a pair of Ugg Kristin's for Christmas in one of my Friday Five's. I also mentioned that I was waiting to use an Ugg protectant on them. A couple of weeks later I got the spray. One year later, I sprayed them and I can finally declare that they are officially engaged in everyday wear action. If you're interested in them (they're not like the Uggs of old) they are a slimmer silhouette and do come up small so size up one size. They also do a black waterproof leather version   here which I'm coveting as since I've started wearing them - I have come to appreciate them wholeheartedly though not in wet weather.

Sunday, 3 December 2017

Tote-ally Amazing.

Uniqlo Fleece Jacket
Cos Grey Jumper
M&S Straight Leg Jeans
H&M Erdem Socks
Veja Watu Trainers

You know I love a good tote bag don't you? I have a stash of them. Well I've added a new one to my collection from Village England. One of their newsletters popped in to my email box and what caught my eye was the tote bag on the front. Like a moth to a flame. I clicked through to read that Jules (founder of Village England) has done her own charity collaboration with ABC-Nepal who rehabilitate female victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation. The ladies have been provided with a sewing machine and the raw materials to make the tote bags and they get 100% of the proceeds. Not a percentage but 100% - that's brilliant! After reading that, I clicked on the purchase button.

I love that each lady gets to put their name to the bag they made. They've sold out of the first batch but more coming in from 4th December!

Find more information about the work and charity here.

Friday, 24 November 2017

Friday Five : 24 October 2017

Hi, back with a Friday Five after a couple of weeks off. I'm a lazy moo aren't I?

Friday Five (1 of 5) Bambi

Topshop Baxter Jeans (old but this season's available here)
Vans in Glazed Ginger (size 6 upwards here)

What do you think? I think this could be my Christmas sweatshirt 2017! I sometimes think let's stop being such a style bore and get a garish acrylic number but hey I can't quite bring myself to do it. But a grey cotton sweatshirt with Bambi and some snow - yeah, now we're talking.  I ordered this the other day at full price and now I have to re-order it as there's 20% off and that's not to be sniffed at.

Friday Five (2 of 5) Not Your Average Girl

Pretty things at Wacoal Press Day (covers Fantasie and Freya lingerie too)

Well I thought I was pretty average bar the whole being a little bit vertically challenged but I've always been able to buy stuff off the high street and online with relatively little problem (or I'd got my head around what I needn't bother with) and I was just Mrs Average with average sized boobs - 34B. Well my brain just got blown when I went to the Wacoal Press Day with my buddy Michelle and I got myself measured. By measured, I mean the bra fitting lady looked me up and down (no tape measures involved) and at my badly fitting bra and said "What size do you think you are? And I said "34B" She replied "That's the most popular size people ARE NOT".  Me told.

Turns out I have a really small rack. Or should that be a really small back. She put me in a 30D which is actually life changing in my eyes because 30 sounds tiny and D sounds huge and the two together? Well I'm finding it quite hard to comprehend this new size and am now thinking that pickings out there are slim and I totally need to restart my lingerie drawer again. Gah! But yep, if you have time, go get your boobs measured - even out of curiosity if nothing else. It's a whole new boob game and quite interesting.

30D seriously???

Friday Five (3 of 5) Hygge
Bombarded by all the Black Friday discount emails? I was - I mean I should be delighted by the 20% off here and there but I think I was more overwhelmed than anything and shut down instead. And then I got my sensible head on and thought about what I wanted. And what I wanted was a cardi. I have one grey Uniqlo cashmere cardigan which has stood the test of time and that's a lighter piece but I have no really nice chunky cardigans which are fit to see the light of day. So I've ordered myself a Christmas present from the hubs. It came today and it's lovely. The size small is perfect and doesn't overwhelm but still is roomy and slouchy. I'll be delighted to open that on Christmas morning.

Friday (4 of 5) The Style Inheritance

Rosie and Sophie

I love this little IG account called The Style Inheritance which belongs to a mother (Rosie in London) and daughter (Sophie in Sydney) who converse with each other over IG about their outfits. It's like a little film just waiting to happen. It's such a lovely account and I love how both ladies can wear the same things and do it so stylishly but age appropriately.  Go have a look.

Friday Five (5 of 5) Should Have Gone to Specsavers

Aldi Spiced Caramel Pies (in store)

Wandering around the Aldi Aisles of Joy as usual, I happened amongst some more mince pie offerings. The last ones I bought turned out to be cognac steeped which I hadn't really spotted after I fed a load to the youngest who pronounced them really good. This time I spotted some little dinky sized ones which said spiced caramel on them. Turns out they're not really mince pies at all but have a little caramel middle with a little bit of cinnamon and are infact really yummy (eaten six so far). I really should get my eyes tested.

By the way, I don't actually like mince pies that much. I buy them for the little one. Honest.


Happy Black Friday weekend everyone!

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Check Mate

H&M Cashmere Jumper (old)
Tiffany Necklace (old)
M&S Jeans (old)
Adidas Stan Smiths (old)

Well aren't I late to the party? How late? Very late. Almost over to be honest. But I turned up at least to the Check Coat party. I saw all the checks filtering in from August onwards but none were quite right for me. You know how the story goes, wrong style, wrong check, wrong proportions, wrong price, wrong something or other so I bided my time and eventually it turned up in ..... Matalan. 

Doesn't look too shoddy does it? And the check alignment isn't bad either, better than most High St offerings and it's got a little weight to it too. 

I would say I'm normally a size 10 in most things but I went with an 8 here as it looks better on a petite but it still fits ok and I can still pop a hoody or sweatshirt underneath (just). If you're taller, you could probably go with your normal sizing - there isn't much in it (I ordered the 10 as well just to check) but I looked better in the neater proportions of the 8. The sleeves are an inch or so too long and are currently tucked under - I just need to get the sewing box out and get on it. I don't like tucking sleeves under but I hate wearing overlong sleeves on certain types of coats more. It's just the way I am.

Anyway, that's my little high street find. Hope you like it.

The above is based on similar items I already have in the wardrobe and some things I'm investigating.

A black crew neck is just such a good basic - mine is a cashmere one from H&M from a couple of years back. Still going strong. I just give it a quick shave each autumn before I start putting it through it's paces again. Expensive or cheap - all cashmere pills to some degree.

I've been looking at some more Stans. I have two pairs. A really old knackered pair which is great for gardening and odd job stuff outside and some cork soled ones which I love which I'm becoming more and more dependent on and I don't want to over wear. I've just spotted the ones with a burgundy trim now and I can't decide between the regular lace up ones shown above or the velcro strap ones which are what my heart truly desires but only one place does them here and has ramped up the price. Grrrr. 

Socks - for mornings when it's getting colder and you need something to take the edge off. Yes I succumbed to the H&M Erdem hype and bagged myself the socks. I do rather like them though and they do add a little something to your ankles.

The Arket burnt orange jumper? I saw this online and finally got to check it out yesterday in store. Yup - still love it. But I didn't buy then. Why? Because I like the safety net of an online return. Got to cover yourself. Got to cover yourself.

* gifted item

Friday, 27 October 2017

Friday Five : 27 October 2017

Crikey, Friday has come round really fast and I thought I had a few hours more to put this together but I've been out and about all day (half term and kids to entertain) and now we're off out shortly so I thought I'd try and see what I can pull together quickly for you. 

Friday Five (1 of 5) New Shoes

Right, I can honestly say I would have done stupidly ridiculously bad on the #nospendoctober challenge if I had taken part in it as I bought let me see - three or was it four pair of shoes? But it's not all bad because I have worn them and they give me joy and that's what it's about isn't it? And they didn't cost me the earth, especially my two pairs of ballet pumps (the leather gold ones which I mentioned here previously for £11 and then I picked up a cute little velvet pair in H&M for £3 (seen here) which are amongst my favourite things currently. And I just took delivery of those ASOS Lea strappy ones up there too. I have a witchy version of these in leather from Office from a couple of years back but they are very witchy. These are less so with the rounded front and I like the chunkier straps - they remind me a little of the Vivienne Westwood Roman shoes which I covet wholeheartedly but never seem to manage to save up for. Well I can scratch that itch here and now with these. 

Friday Five (2 of 5) Ouch

Crikey, I've been up ladders decorating and doing all manner of housey things and I was going to make the dinner when I thought, the hubs can do it for a change. He's not made anything for a while and I can crack on and get my decorating done. Hmmm. Not long after he started, there was a "Suuuuueee! I need a little help here" and I thought "Streuth!" but duly trotted down to find him holding his hand aloft with kitchen roll wrapped round his thumb and looking rather faint. "I've cut myself ... badly". The things some people do to get out of cooking! Anyway, he had taken a chunk out of his thumb and after he was dispatched to the sofa looking rather faint, I made the dinner. He went to the Minor Injuries unit the other day and came back with a rather badly bandaged thumb and a few big plasters. Now a few years back, my eldest son was a bit gung-ho with the safety scissors at nursery and whipped the top of his thumb off. At the Minor Injuries unit, the nice nurse there taught me how to cut the plasters to fit neatly on top of a thumb because as you know, they are rather awkward to apply neatly. If you want to know how ... watch this video. All I can say is, I've spent the rest of the day going "Boom!" to the hubs and sticking my thumb up at him!

Friday Five (3 of 5) Skirts

Skirt picked up in store in H&M

Well it's 15% off currently at H&M if you're an H&M Club member and whilst in store this week, I picked up this floral pleated skirt. It has a pleated top mesh layer and doesn't crease - I hate it when you wear a pleated skirt and the pleats at the back do their own thing and iron themselves out when you sit down. This one doesn't. However ... I had already ordered a polkadot jacquard one from the site (before the 15% offer came on) and in a size 10. It arrived yesterday and I love it but I'm worried that I can't eat in it as it's quite a neat fit which I can just about get away with but my sensible head tells me to check out the size up too. So I have now ordered a 10 and 12 with the discount and we shall see. I love the frills at the front. Ole!

(losing light here so apologies for grainy pic)

Friday Five (4 of 5) Not A DarkSide Girl

Farrow & Ball Stiffkey Blue

I've been wanting to go over to the dark side for some time - well since 2015 which is when this picture was taken and I wanted to paint a room in Farrow & Ball's Stiffkey Blue. The hubs finally let me loose in his study and I painted it. I hate it. I didn't sleep because of it. I need to go back to the light side - I just don't do dark rooms. I'll repaint when he's next away. Don't tell him. 

Friday Five (5 of 5) Dustpan & Brush

Yup, my little brush with the rubber bristles finally gave up the last of its bristles and I had to buy a new one. I could have picked up a lovely looking wooden one with natural bristles and which was aesthetically pleasing to the eye but instead, I picked up this grey and orange number from Amazon and I love it. I find the rubber bristles grab bits off the floor a lot better. So that was me picking function over form for once. I'm getting old. And yes, I'm taking the mick with my flatlay of my new dustpan and brush.

Have a good weekend y'all!