A fashion and style blog for the over 40s covering body shapes, colour palettes, how to wear neutrals, style personality and capsule wardrobes. Come on in!


Time Flies

Hello Hello. I'm here. It's been such a busy week. I stand at the kitchen windows every morning with a cup of tea watching the landscape turn from a monochrome green to a riot of autumnal golds and reds and rusts. Just wow! But how are we already in October? It seems only a couple of weeks ago that we got stuck in the snow on Boxing Day and I don't even remember Easter. Maybe if someone had bought me an egg, it might not have passed me by so unnoticed.

As November is knocking on the door, I've been thinking about my birthday which is a mere month away (thankfully not the big one this year) and what I might like. I give the family a 'picking list' that covers the birthday and Christmas - it's easier all round.

Here's what's caught my eye this year.

I came across Monica Vinader on Net-A-Porter and loved the different fonts for each letter of the alphabet but many were out of stock. However, the main MV website is very well stocked. There's a lovely little section that allows you to create your own necklace (a bit like build a bear but for grown-ups).

Monica Vinader Necklace

I've earmarked the 18 inch Rolo chain in rose gold and three pendants representing the name of the hubster and two children in a mixture of rose gold and silver (I really love how the silver lifts the rose gold and makes it looks much more contemporary).

Eventually I'd like 2 necklaces, one shorter than the other, I'll move the silver M on to the shorter one and add another pendant. I quite like the Ava Disc Pendant but it's rather pricey so that will have to wait for another special day.

Do go and have a play with the website, it's really rather fun - I love how the virtual necklace bounces when you add something to it.

Next on my wish list is good old Jo Malone perfume - London Grapefruit is my favourite scent.

Jo Malone Grapefruit Cologne

A dead easy option, click and collect!

Now these next few items will come as a complete relief to the fam, the neighbours and anyone else who might come across me before 9am. My whole nightwear range is a total disaster. I have absolutely no qualms about wearing a pink spotty top with grey striped pj bottoms - it's a case of sticking my hand in the 'jama drawer and putting on whatever comes out first. All topped off with an old bobbly dressing gown. Given my tendency for wearing nightwear out of the house (early morning dog walking, school runs and even late night visits to the petrol station), you'd think I would take a bit more pride. Nope. Well until now. So I'm on a mission to sort it out starting with...

Marks & Spencer Colour Block Top

Marks & Spencer Colour Block Pyjama Bottoms

And to replace the old bobbly dressing gown...

Next Grey Cashmere Mix Jumper 

I dearly love the cashmere bottoms in this photo too but I couldn't sleep in them. I've realised that trying to do this loungewear business and then having to change again into nightwear  doesn't really work for me. So I'm cutting out the middle man and going straight in with pjs at 6pm! But I do love these bottoms so might have to sneak them on to the list too.

I have a beautiful gold bangle that the husband bought me many, many years ago and I wear it nearly every single day. I tend to layer it with something a bit chunkier but in my quest for a less fussy, more contemporary wardrobe, I want to add a slimmer bangle and this one has caught my eye.

Links of London Yellow Gold Vermeil Bracelet

I'm one of those people that can get totally lost in the funny birthday card section of Hallmark and I've been known to laugh out loud which can be pretty embarrassing when you're on your lonesome. We really don't need any more mugs in the house but I can't resist this one. I know it will put a smile on my face every time I use it.

Not On The High Street For Fox Sake Ceramic mug

And finally, a lovely smelly candle

The White Company Pomegranate Signature Candle

So that's my picking list for this year - lots and lots for the family to choose from. Unless of course they surprise me - I love surprises especially of the 4 wheel variety with a double barrel name, second word is Martin (Vanquish would be my preferred model husband if you're reading). In your dreams Donna, in your dreams.

I haven't done any photos this week but I have got dressed and I've loved my outfits (sorry, that's not helpful is it). Lots of leather look pants (I got the black Next ones - finally) and chunky knits which seem to be VERY popular this year.

I've bought this beautiful coat from Jovonna (stocked by Top Shop). It really is much nicer in the flesh and I love the fact that from the back it's very fitted.

Jovonna at Top Shop Phoebe Longline Wrap Coat £90

And a new brand that I've come across in a local boutique, FRNCH (the N is back to front but I can't do this on my computer!!). So 4 gorgeous tops (two of them are by FRNCH have hopped, skipped and jumped into my wardrobe. I'll do a show and tell next time.

That's it from me, I hope you have something nice planned for the weekend.


Creases, Rugby and A Leggings Update

Rugby has a lot to answer for in this house. Online shopping! To beat the boredom. And, if the husband even mentions the number of parcels received into this household I won't be responsible for my actions. Take last night for example, he and the son took themselves off into the other room (the 'big screen') - I'm told England were playing. It was Saturday night for goodness sake and I was left on my own. The amount of screaming coming out of that room was probably enough to warrant a police visit, I thought they were murdering each other. Apparently England lost (whoops).

So the latest delivery happens to be from a shop that I rarely feature and rarely shop in, Dorothy Perkins. I need a few easy wear tops and when I say easy wear, I mean good old polyester. Of the wash it, hang it, wear it variety.

The first top I pulled out of the bag (and when I say pulled out, I mean just that, the garments were rammed in there they were) was a wrap pussybow blouse.

Ivory Pussybow Blouse £25 

Also available in tall.

It was all just a bit bleur. I preferred the bow unfastened but the drape, the wrap the bow and see through material, it was all a bit much. So this is a definite no.

I didn't fare much better with this next top.

Ivory Lace Yoke Victoriana Top £24

I loved the neckline detailing - I've been after something like this but will revert back to Mango or Zara. The material felt cheap, it was creased and badly made around the hemline. Come on Dotty P, you can do better than this!

Let's pretend that never happened. It's a no. Move on.

I know that nude/blush pink is a flattering colour for my skin tone (indeed any Soft and Light colour palettes) and there's lots of it around again this year (yippee).

High Neck Pussybow Blouse (reduced to £17.99)

The detailing around the neckline is really well executed so I'll show you this first.

I love the billowing cuffs and the slim neck tie. In fact the only thing that's putting me off is that it's a tad wide at the hem. Given I'll be wearing a jacket most of the time and have the option of a front tuck, I might give it a go.

Another blush pink, this time with a contrast neck tie.

Blush Frill Neck Blouse £22

And with me in it!

It's one of those happy tops that made me smile when I put it on. I think I'll enjoy wearing it so it's a yes.

I'd happily keep both pink ones but I'm trying to buy better quality (is there such a thing as better quality polyester?). I've lightly steamed both of them and will try on again tomorrow to decide whether I keep one or both.

I've got to say though that I wasn't overly impressed with the quality. Primark at double the cost (even though we're only talking £20ish, I guess you can pick up similar at Primark for a tenner). And, I wasn't chuffed at the way everything was packaged either. Crumpled up in little poly bags which meant that everything was terribly creased (other than the first blouse which came on a coat hanger). It all felt a little unloved.

So thank goodness the rugby is over, well it is for England anyway. I'll give the old t'internet a wide birth for a few days.

Coated Leggings Update: following on from my post yesterday, I can confirm that the Next leggings do not lose their shape, I repeat, they do not lose their shape (even with my knobbly knees). Very, very impressed.

Boyfriend Shirt - Boden
Coated Leggings - Next
Boots - Toga Pulla (sold out but this years collection here)
Chancery Clutch - Boden 

I'll probably not have chance to blog again until next weekend, so enjoy your week whatever you're up to.


A Cheaper Alternative To The Leather Legging

I cannot tell you how much I've longed for a pair of leather leggings. I bought a pair of leather trousers from Ted Baker about 15 years ago and loved them to bits. I didn't love the dry cleaning bills though! I am assured by fellow blogger, Joanna over at Poppy's Style that you can wash leather and Kat at Does My Bum Look 40 is supposed to be testing this out. Personally, I'd be a quivering wreck. The Liv leather leggings from Baukjen would be my first choice.

They. Are. Sublime.

I wanted them last year and I want them this. Hubby has even said he'll buy them for me but until I know for sure that they can be washed at home, I'm going to give them a wide berth.

Liv Leggings £349

So until I cave in, I've replaced my cheap H&M ones from last year with these equally cheap ones from Next.

Coated Pull On Leggings £22

Not the best picture, they really don't look like disco pants in real life. Look, I put them against a shiny bed cover to show you that they look more leather, less 70s nightclub.

I ordered both the black and berry in regular and longer length. To be honest the regular length is perfect on me (sitting on the ankles). Black is out of stock in my size but will be delivered in a couple of weeks. I'll probably keep the black ones too.

Size wise - they're ever so slightly generous. I ordered a 10 and they fit fine, maybe a tad on the loose side. They wrinkle slightly on the leg but given that the £349 Baukjen ones are also wrinkled, I figured this was a good thing. Rather a few wrinkles than sizing down and having legs of sausage. Just praying they don't give with wear. Nora Batty isn't really the look I'm after. I'll let you know on Instagram tomorrow when they've had their first outing. And here comes the old lady bit...they're ever so comfortable.

So have I scratched the itch? Can I do without a pair of real leather leggings. I still feel the urge to order them. Come on someone, hurry up and wash a bit of leather!

It was an early meet at school for the son's rugby this morning, followed by our local football team playing at home (a goalless match - booooooo). And sadly that sun ain't shining anymore so out came the big coat. Now that was a shock to the system! Curry and X-Factor tonight. Oh wait, where's X-Factor? I really hope Simon & co have enough weeks left before Christmas. Darn you rugby! You're ruined my evening - again!


That's The Way I Roll

I'm a smart-casual kinda girl for most of the week, you know, jeans and a blazer and I'm good to go (it makes for a very boring blogger though - I mean, I bore myself so thank you for staying with me this long). But come Sunday, I just want to wear something a little less formal, something a bit more appropriate for a day of dog walking, watching the son's football match, cooking a Sunday roast and all that jazz.

Now don't get excited, I'm not talking totally scruffy. I was mumbling a couple of Sunday's ago that I needed a warm cardi. The husband in his wisdom said, "what you actually need is a really nice hoodie." And then he wonders why he get's a filthy look. We've been together over 20 years - he still doesn't get me.

And then Fat Face popped up and rescued me from that hoodie. They asked if I would road test one of their check shirts and a pair of jeans and share my thoughts with you. Perfect! I've been adding to my casual wardrobe over the last couple of months and a blue check shirt is on the list.

Classic Fit Grid Check Shirt

Worn Vintage Super Skinny Jeans

Before we go any further, I have to tell you about their Carpenter Jeans. I popped in to my local Fat Face to do a little research on their current range and saw these.

Carpenter Ankle Grazers

I can't tell you how much I loved them. I've never tried a Carpenter jean before. It's really difficult to describe the fit - not a boyfriend, there's far less material and definitely not a skinny. They kind of skim the leg if you know what I mean. The panel detailing at the front is super flattering, working the verticals. Unfortunately, the ankle grazer length on me was more calf skimming (very sad face) but if you're 5 ft 6 or less, go and try them on. They are ace!. And please, please, please Fat Face, make a longer length version.

My laid back Sunday look (as shot on a Friday)

Now here lies my clever plan. I live in a chaotic, routineless household and there I am, wearing my casual togs and the husband pipes up, "right let's eat out today". I should be grateful, really I should but we normally get a 5 minute warning. I'm quick, but not that quick. So while the others are frantically running around trying to get ready, I can pop on a blazer, change my shoes, add a handbag and a slick of lipgloss. And, I'm stood by the door, ready to go.

It's a good plan, yes?

So, I sized up in the shirt which is a gorgeous, soft (almost brushed) cotton. I'm sat wearing it now and it's still crease free 13 hours later. The jeans are true to size, wonderfully stretchy and as comfy as wearing leggings (yes really). And if you like your jeans to sit just on the hips, these are for you.

I've rediscovered this brand following a review I did earlier in the year. Since then I've bought a white shirt, a sleeveless top and my lovely elephant jacket which I've put away for Spring. Three things to note, the quality, the helpful staff in both of my local shops in Wilmslow and Macclesfield and the soft, understated patterns which are flattering on many skin tones.

Oh and I must make special mention of my new Tods 'D' bag which I won in an Instagram competition run by Edit Secondhand along with lots of other goodies including a Missoni scarf, a Coach bangle, an Isabel Marant jumper and much more. You so need to enter these competitions!!

It's been a very good week.

Actually, it's been a very good week, I've enjoyed the weather, been busy writing scripts and working for a pal (I'll tell you about that little project another time), meeting friends for coffee - bliss.

A couple of photos taken early morning on the humble iPhone. As you know I'm a pretty crappy photographer but I'm rather proud of these!

I'll try to blog again tomorrow as I have a cracking pair of pleather leggings to show you and they seem to be selling out fast.

Enjoy the last couple of days of sunshine (it's going to break on Monday - sorry, but it is).

Thank you Fat Face for supporting this blog and sending the beautiful items for me to review.

A Military Coat Mark Down - But You Need To Be Quick

It's a quickie form me today (I'll hopefully be back later tonight or tomorrow with some new clobber!). I just wanted to let you know that this super little coat has been marked down 50% for 1 day only (it started yesterday so the 24 hours will be up soon).

Look, I know it's shirt sleeve weather but sometimes we have to plan forward.

Black Military Funnel Coat £65 (but £32.50 for 24 hours)

And free delivery to store which means sod all to me as our local Wallis has just closed down!

Enjoy this beautiful Friday.