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Thursday, 19 October 2017

How To Overegg Your Leoprint

Is it possible to overegg your leoprint?
Well, I believe it is and I believe I may just have done it.

You see, sometimes I can become a tad obsessive.  With clothing and most probably with pretty much everything else.  Except ironing :-).

I bought my leopard print scarf last autumn here.

 It soon became my go-to-scarf.

Being innovative (read: too lazy to use two words when one will do), I quickly called it my leoprint.  I wore it.  And I wore it.  It did get a summer break when it became just too hot to wear it (though I did use it as a beach sarong on more than one occasion - that doesn't count, eh?).  But it was back in service again some weeks ago.  It's quickly become a 3-and-a-bit season item in my wardrobe.

Whenever I wear something black, grey or beige, I grab my leoprint.
So that's pretty much every day then as those colours are my only core wardrobe shades.

But I do have another scarf in those same hues in my suitcase, so as I felt I was becoming a tad formulaic in my dress, I switched.  I asked The Photographer With Fashion Views which he thought was best.  I do this sometimes to allow him to feel engaged with the process, to let him believe that he is more than a clicking finger in this "model"/photographer relationship. He chose the Tie Rack silk square.  I agreed with him.  That does sometimes happen.  Not a lot, but sometimes.

And it suddenly dawned on me that I may just have been overegging my leoprint,  as magically my ancient silk square looked somehow fresh.  New.   Perhaps overegged starts to feel simply tired and stale over time.
And that, folks, is how you overegg your leoprint. 
Wear it solidly for 3+ seasons.   Wear it with everything.    Including a swimsuit!

So I really have been trying to burst out of my leoprint cocoon this autumn, before my obsession takes hold again for the another 3+ seasons.  Here I dipped my toe in the water with a blue/grey print scarf from the National Trust shop.

It felt a bit cold turkey.  But I lasted another day without my leoprint.
I'm going to tackle it one day at a time.

When I look back on posts from the last 12 months, I do wince a little when I see how quickly my leoprint took hold of me.  I became obsessive, but I think it's because it fits with so many of my neutrals.  Indeed, I have read many fashionistas say that animal print is a neutral, and I guess it is, as provided the print colours are vaguely in the colour range of what I'm wearing, it works for me.  And for others, just about any colourway goes with animal print.

So although I have perhaps overegged my outfits with my Zara leoprint scarf since the very day I bought it, well hey ho, I'm just being fashionista.

For the record, this is what absolute cold-turkey-padded-cell looks like in Pout World.
Gosh, I felt so naked on this day!

And just to prove that I don't spend all day at home obsessing about scarves, look, I did get down to the beach!

This was not a good visibility day but on the horizon in the middle of the picture you can just make out some headland, that being Eastbourne and the very tip being Beachy Head.  I show you this as the lovely Canadian blogger Susan of High Heels in the Wilderness recently visited Eastbourne.  It rained.  And it was damp and dreary.  So the day after I saw her IG post I took these shots because I wanted to show her that it doesn't always rain in Eastbourne.

So this one's for you, Sue!  Hugs, x.
(Hey, who put that leoprint around my neck?!!)

Now, dear readers, it's your turn.  Please tell me that you too have become obsessive about an item of clothing too.  Something that maybe sneaks into so many outfits, perhaps on most days and over several seasons?  Something you start to feel just plain naked without? 
Please don't leave me feeling like it's only me who wore a grey turtle neck jumper solidly every weekend for three whole seasons when she was 14!  And now, repeatedly wearing a leoprint scarf for 3+ seasons at the age of, err, oops, selective memory loss again!

A la perchoine.

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Bikers, Scones and Peacocks

Hi, dear readers.  Well, we're passed the middle of October and storming at breakneck speed
 into November (quite literally for some poor souls, my heart goes out to them). 

Life is so fast-moving at the moment, so fast that I don't seem to take it all in.
 I had one of those blogger blocks today. 
I sat at my laptop and thought, what on earth have I been doing this past week?
Fortunately my essential aide memoire was to hand.  My photo folders.  Oh how vital are these visual prompts and my blogger's diary these days.  Otherwise I wouldn't remember what I did yesterday.

The camera doesn't lie and it tells me that last Thursday I wore this.

Black pencil skirt, black/grey striped top, Gabor anklies, batik silk scarf.  The latter is from a charity shop so yippee, that sneaks me in for one of dear Terri's 2nd Loved linkups, which I'll post here.

Oh yes, you perhaps noticed that I slipped on a biker jacket too.

Yeah, yeah ... I hear you - I didn't pack one.  But I keep a few things over here to dip into and this was a dip that filled me with excited anticipation.  It's a £14 Primani find.

I have to say, darlings, that I was very pleased with this little outfit.  I felt really good in it.
I'm sorry the pics aren't the best, TP must have been having a down-day (but, my dear reader Anne, they will get better!)

I felt that my little outfit deserved a proper outing, so I took me and it out for tea at the pretty 

It was actually tea for three.  For this pretty peacock strutted his stuff alongsIde whilst I drank a prosecco on the terrace, taking in the glorious colour that is the autumn afternoon sunlight.  It was beautifully warm, so the jacket came off and I sipped elegantly, feeling the love -  of nature,  wildlife and our beautiful October Indian summer.

Not satisfied with watching me sip my bubbly, Mr P also decided to join us for tea - he stepped tentatively over the threshold of the front door ... !

The restaurant was beautifully set up and fit for, errr, a peacock!

Tea was served in the pretty conservatory.  My pics don't do the scrummy scones, the bird or the place the justice they deserve.  I must have been on a down-day too.  
So I leave you in the competent hands of the Powder Mills' camera pros ...

Join me on the drive up to the Powder Mills.

Be struck by the beauty of its pretty wisteria.

Get chummy with the locals.

Wander around its pretty gardens.

Stroll inside and feast your eyes on the décor ...

Then say goodbye to this fine fella ...

The peacock, at Powder Mills.

And to ...

the peacock, at Orsett Hall, by Tricia Gould (the Designers' Guild).

Now, I hope I don't bore you with hotel interiors, dears, it's just that I do admire a good bit of décor and I'm hoping some of you do too.

And finishing where I started off (before my ramblings!) ... biker jackets.  I can't believe how useful they are and how much I am having a blast wearing them.  Perhaps you are feeling the biker jacket love too?  When I recently posted a biker jacket outfit, bloggerTerri's wonderful reminiscing got me reminiscing myself.  This song sprang to mind, so thanks Terri for taking me back about 45 years to when my cousin first introduced me to this little ditty.
I hope I don't bore you with my music pastes either, it's just that I do admire a good song too.

Arlo Guthrie, singing talking The Motorcycle Song.  Please do give it a listen!

So that's one of the things I've been up to, folks.  Now I'm off to my photo folders to refresh my addled memory on what else I've been doing recently!

A la perchoine.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

#6, Who I met !!

Some bloggers never get to meet a fellow blogger.  Even fewer bloggers get to meet two bloggers.  And both called Anna?  What are the chances? I'm sure Oscar Wilde would have something clever to say on the matter.  
I see myself as so lucky to meet two bloggers in my 21 month blogger life, and that both are called Anna is even luckier!  Have I just done something amazing?

During my recent holiday in the Scilly Isles I met ...

... taadaaahh!

The delightful and oh so colourful Anna of Anna's Island Style.
Doesn't she look amazing in her pattern mix?  And look at the backdrop, isn't that idyllic?

Anna is a stylish and colourful blogger.  Anna's ethos is to inject colour and pattern into her every day dress style, and preferably through 2nd Loved clothes.  In fact, so much is she a lover of and expert in colour and pattern mixes and black not usually having a place in her wardrobe that she set herself a challenge.  Wear a pair of new black trousers once a week, each time differently and for about 12 weeks from recollection (sure beats my 3-ways approach anyway!).
Of course, these were no ordinary black trousers, they had salsa-style frills down the outer leg.  I was fascinated to see what she did with black trousers and I found great inspiration from her series as I tend not to be very adventurous ... even with black!

But colour she does and she does it so well, see some of her splendid work here!  And I can also vouch for the fact that she wears colour and pattern in her every day life.  I sometimes think that bloggers dress for the camera then switch into sweat pants and an old t shirt.  Oh no, not Anna.  For I made an unannounced visit to her island gallery and she was there,  Monday morning, dressed in a glory of oranges and purples and pattern.

We both live on small islands so neither of us get to do that many blogger meets.  So we chatted.  We chatted for our islands.  We chatted non-stop for hours.  Despite lubrication in the form of a cappuccino and elderflower water, I arrived back at my hotel sounding croaky husky, and I likened my new voice to that of Judi Dench.
I realised that in retirement I don't talk as much as I used to.  And as much as I loved sounding like our National Treasure for a day or two (yes, the husk lasted!), I realised my vocal chords haven't been getting a good work out lately so promptly resolved to change that by upping my talking.  The Photographer's reaction to this new resolution was decidedly underwhelmed.

With our voice boxes well exercised and mine Judi-husking, we dashed off in search of another photo shoot location.
Anna found us this rocky outcrop with a beautiful sea and island background.

What a lovely shot, eh?  She's got an eye for locations.
And this looks like such an easy thing to do, eh?  Taking a shot at the water's edge.
But let me just show you what goes on behind the scenes.

10 Steps To The Perfect Blogger Selfie

1. Find suitable backdrop with level platform to rest camera.  If not level, create level platform with stones, twigs, phones and/or anything else lurking in handbag/backpack.

2. Position fellow blogger on edge of rocky outcrop as marker to line up camera screen.

3.   Check view of fellow blogger as seen through miniscule camera screen in blinding sunlight.  Set timer.

4.  Commence run and conduct in-run risk assessment - terrain (spongy and decidedly pot holed), timeframe, distance, pace required (note wind speed and adjust strides accordingly).

5.  Be mindful of camera ticking the 10 second countdown. 

6.   Start adjusting those strides.

7.  Watch out for those pot holes!

8.  Try flying.

9.  Leap like a gazelle on to the rocky outcrop, taking care that momentum of run does not run you off the edge, next stop: the sea.

10.   Hold on for dear life to fellow blogger who has been unsympathetically giggling whilst taking frame shots of your hairy 10 second journey from camera to rocky outcrop.

That, dear readers, is how bloggers get their shots!

And that's Anna, folks.  She has a zest for life.  She's fun, dynamic, a veritable powerhouse.   Kind, multi-talented and so enthusiastic that it's contagious!
I thank Anna so much for taking time out from her busy day to spend time with little ole me. I also got to meet her charming photographer who takes Anna's amazing pics and also her lovely daughter.
Oh what fun we had!  Do please check out Anna's post on our meet here.  Must dash, I'm off to check it out myself.  
But before I do, as thanks Anna, this is for you!

Stephen Bishop, singing On and On

A la perchoine.

Friday, 13 October 2017

Paint It Black

Hi my sweetie pies!  Ready for your weekend? Have you got a relaxing rewind of a few days planned or is it going to be jam-packed with house tasks and socialising?
I did have exciting plans with a lovely friend which have had to change a tad, so maybe a quiet dinner is on the cards, coffee with family and just a little housework.  Does that sound like a pensioner's weekend?

I don't know about The Pouting Pensioner, I'm feeling more like The Peripatetic Pensioner at the moment (or some of you may think of me as The Peripathetic Pensioner!)
I'm all over the place right now.  Mini cruise to Bruges, a week in the Scilly Isles and now three weeks in the UK, which will involve a series of mini trips between Sussex and London and maybe other places too.  My holidays are certainly like buses!

Because of all this peripatetic-ing (oh I love making up words that don't pass spellcheck!), I've had the usual challenge of devices that don't talk too each other.  And the challenge of packing, multiple times. For the past six weeks it seems like life had been pack, unpack, launder; repack, reunpack, relaunder ... maybe exposure to so much packing had got me rather good at it 😊, see here and here.

However, so much was I fine tuning my UK trip's packing to attempt record-breaking carry on weights that I made an executive decision with regard to photographic devices.  "Oh, the iphones will serve us well" was my decision, for I was that executive.  It was a rash decision.  Not my best. Because they haven't served us well.  My photographs are coming out decidedly bad, lacking in focus, blurring lights, that sort of thing.  I fear I may just weaken and let my finger stroll over to Amazon to get myself something better.  So my apologies for the quality right now.  Not good.  And shortly I will give you practical demos on how not-good they are.

So, enough of the waffle, Pout, tell your friends what you've been up to!
Well, just a day after arriving in  Sussex, I went on my first mini trip up to London.  No not to meet the Queen!
I started the journey with jeans and a top.

For dinner I wore the black modal jersey top and switched jeans for a black pencil skirt, both M&S, with Clarks chunky heeled courts (pumps).  Legs patterned by M&S; I felt all that black needed a bit of texture to lift the outfit.

Next day I wore a Dotty P jersey dress (packs a dream).  My "waist" is "cinched" by a deep black leather belt.  Tie Rack silk square.  These last two items are about 20 years old and still much loved (I say this in case I decide to put this post on Terri's 2nd Loved link-up - my old clothes are loved, but still by me!).
The legs were clad with matt opaques.

Over this I wore a v. old ex-suit textured jacket by Kaliko; this also packs a dream and hence I took it with me on many business trips, BITD.  My little black handbag finished off the outfit.

For dinner that evening back at the hotel, I switched the jacket for a spotted cardi, Primani.  And became obsessed by a light fitting.

So my little case carried 1 jacket, 1 dress, 1 skirt, 1 cardi, 1 vest (tank), just in case. 1 pr courts, tights (racy and sombre), silk square, handbag.  Mostly black.  I wanted black.
Either side of these outfits and for travel I wore the top with jeans, leoprint scarf and flatties; crossover bag.
Pretty light packing, huh?
I could have done without the skirt and vest but our trip may have been extended by another overnight, so I packed for that eventuality.

Now here I will demonstrate how bad my pictures are.  We stayed at Orsett Hall.

Website photo.

My photo.

My photos only (none found on website).  I loved this lounge, I loved the colour mix and the patterns.

And here I ate a surprisingly tasty tuna bagle.  I'm impressed that the simple tuna can be turned into something quite tangy and exciting.  Coffee was accessorised by cute milk churns.  I know one milk churn fan who will be wanting to get her hands on these cutiies.  You know who you are!

Back to the comparisons.

Website photos

My photos (a wedding reception was taking place the day we arrived).

My photos only.  Again, I found no dining room website shots to compare.

I liked the floral touches in this room.  The voiles were edged in fabric that matched the wallpaper.  "Snapshots" of the fabric pattern were used on the backs of the chairs.  I liked those touches.

 Now, some of these photos aren't the worst, but they can definitely be done better. 
The fact is, this is about finding more ways of doing less of what I currently do better.
And if you don't watch W1A, that last sentence will leave you scratching your head. 
Yes, exactly.  Yes.

Oh and did I say I was concerningly besotted by a light fitting?!
This huge chandelier-style fitting spanned the hotel's three floors!
I challenged myself to have photos taken with it on each floor.  I won't bore you with all of those.
I'm guessing you don't get obsessed by light fittings?  It's probably just me ... oh, and a family member of mine who always heads for the light fittings section in DIY and department stores.  You know who you are too!

A la perchoine.