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Monday, 27 January 2014

Sorel Caribou Boots



Where is the snow? I want it to snow! I want it to snow so I have total justification for popping these clodhoppers on my feet.




Pretty they are not. Warm they are. And I also have to eat humble pie about saying how I didn't think I needed these fugly ugly snow boots to Miss Sophie. She did a review on these last year and at the time I said I will put on my thick socks and wear my Hunters and be done with. I should also have listened to Fen who claimed these were her best buy of 2012. Well what a difference a year makes. Thick socks and Hunters are not good enough anymore. My circumstances have changed. I became a soccer mom. I stand there on an all weather pitch on Wednesday nights and sometimes it pours and pours and pours. I occasionally stand there on a muddy soggy field on a Saturday too and my feet just get colder and colder and colder. And then I had a lightbulb moment. Admittedly an expensive lightbulb moment, but a lightbulb moment where Sorels appeared to me as the answer. They almost had a lovely hazy angelic glow around them as I envisaged how snuggly my toes would be encased in these monster boots.

I finally settled on these full grain leather Sorel Caribou ones with a wool inner lining (most come with a felt lining) which are designed to cope with temperatures up to minus 40. I hate cold feet. People in North America - I'm thinking of you #PolarVortex


Aubin & Wills jumper, Topshop Jamie Jeans, Zara Parka


Zara parka, Whistles Sweatshirt, Zara Jeans


Did you know these are also known as duck boots. Look at the front of them - they look like duck bills - well actually I've just made that up. The reality is that the top half of these type of boots used to be made from  a waterproof type fabric/canvas called duck cloth. Hence the name duck boots. I personally prefer my reasoning :o)  Quack quack.

And guess what, I even took advice from a fellow soccer dad who had a pair when I sidled up to him and in a reverent whisper asked "Are those Sorels?". He nodded sagely. And I asked him "Are they any good?" and he said "Brilliant. I go to Krakow in Poland each year - it's absolutely freezing and every year my feet suffer but then I got these and my feet are great in them. They are the mutts nuts". Or words to that effect. Sold! Sold! Sold to the impressionable little Chinese lady with the cold feet!

I christened mine last weekend on a walk when Nee-jell & his wife came round with the Border Terriers and we had a stomp through the woods.


The boots weigh about the same as the dogs.


Given that the Sorels are more geared towards snow than muddy fields, they did the job really well. I got a proper workout as I tell you no lie - these boots weigh a tonne. They probably weigh the equivalent of a small dog each. But I love them. You know when you open the box and you don't quite get it? I was a bit like that with the boots. They looked huge. I put them on and then I started to smile and then I started to stomp around like the BFG (Big Friendly Giant) and then I chuckled a bit and then looked around to see there was no one looking who thought I might need possibly locking up. I declared them KEEPERS.

Do you know what's also really superficially good about these? Call me shallow but they make your legs look about 2mm thinner. They are so big and fat, they make everything else look small. Woohoo!

And I hear there is snow a coming? Maybe in the next few days? For once I can't wait :o) I'm prepared, are you?



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Last note :

  • The boots are true to size in my opinion. I bought them in a UK 4 and they fit comfortably. There is ample toe wiggle room and I wear these with just thin socks for maximum comfort.
  • Not recommended but it is possible to ride a bike in these - yes I did that. Don't ask.
  • I did my hour all weather pitch duty last week and when I came home, I made the Grumps feel how toasty my feet were to make him fully appreciate my reasoning for the Sorels. I may not have bought them with snow in mind but they suit my purpose and need.
  • Oh - and a little inspiration on how to wear your Sorels .... not so fugly ugly now eh?






Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Uniqlo Silk Spot Shirt





Uniqlo Silk Blouse, Gap Mini Skimmer Chinos, Monsoon Belt, Hobbs NW3 Bag, M&S Shoes.


Guess what I'm in to now?

Spots.

Or is that Dots? Spotty what or dotty what? (You'll only get that if you have kids and watch the The WotWots and if you haven't - LUCKY LUCKY you.

I normally sit in the stripes camp but just lately, I'm feeling the pull over towards the spots side. It will be a bit of a tug of war between the two and even though I know which side will ultimately come out victorious, it will be fun playing one off against the other (for maybe a week) and then I will get bored and go back to something plain and grey. As usual.

My spots will come in the guise of my Uniqlo silk spot blouses. I first spotted (!) them at the beginning of January 2013 on Shini's Park & Cube. I clicked the link faster than you can say spotty what or dotty what and found that they had sold out in my size. Hmmph! And them they brought them out again in the autumn and I ummed and ahhed so long over them that they sold out again. Hmmph! However it is good to have friends in far away places and Joanna from Poppy's Style kindly helped me track down an ivory blouse and had it sent over from the U.S. And then a month later as I was browsing the Uniqlo sale section, what did I spot (!)? The elusive sold out silk spotty blouses which were no longer sold out??? All colours, all sizes. So I bought the navy too.

And I'm going to take  some inspiration from some of these gals. Shini, Virginie, Steph, Alexa and Clemence. Yeah - I'm totally on first name terms with all of them (not).









I did have quite a hard time finding pictures of ladies in spotty shirts so I guess they're not that popular but those girls look good don't they? Anyway, as there's a shortage of spotty shirt pictures, I thought I'd add one more to the interweb.

Photo Credit : Nigel


Err my interpretation is a bit more suburban than those young gals up there. But then again, I am a  40 something suburban school mum so this is as rocking as it gets. Nigel, a family friend or as we call him "Nee-jell"came round with his camera and I persuaded him to pap me. I did a lot of gazing in the distance at nothing in particular to get one shot that I didn't hate. I find that if I stare straight at a camera lens I grin like a Cheshire cat so best thing to do - not look at the camera. Anyway, thanks for humouring me Nee-jell and when are you popping around again?

By the way, like everyone else in blogsphere, I like a bit of Pinterest for inspiration. I do believe in  trying to adapt looks around what you already have and using it to help you find new and interesting ways to wear your clothes. Michelle from Myfashionable40s is a dab hand at this especially since she took up a challenge to restrict her spending last year and to shop her own wardrobe instead. I love people who are good like this and take on these masochistic challenges and what's more I really love reading about how they get on. I couldn't do it myself if the truth be told but I digress and what I wanted to say was I liked Clemence's look and took the key elements like the spotty blouse and ankle strap shoes and worked my own spring look around them. I might even try a wintery version of it as well at some point with the navy shirt given that we are technically in winter. And now that I've said it - I'm thinking, what a jolly good idea! But not today. Maybe next week as I'm currently in decorating mode (with me being the decorator) hence the slowdown in blogging (1 bathroom and 1 bedroom done so far - chuffed :o)).

Anyway, here are some spotty dotty offerings I spotted on the interweb.





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Last Note :

  • I have to say the Uniqlo silk blouses that I have are beautifully made and finished and only cost £40 at full price. The silk is just the right weight and thickness which is why I bought two. As you can see from the pictures, the ivory one is thick enough to hide all underwear. 
  • Uniqlo are not currently doing the silk spotty shirts but they have brought out a rayon version which is almost identical to the ones I have. The link is above and here as I've found that I can't find the blouse when searching through their actual site. One of those strange glitches I'm afraid!



Saturday, 11 January 2014

Dorothy Perkin Denim Dress



You know me - I love a little denim dress. Last year, I found a lovely looking shift dress from Topshop which I showed off proudly in this post and then found myself returning it based on the fact that it was too short. 

Look what I found! Another almost identical one! But this one is from Dorothy Perkins and is in a light denim/chambray type fabric which is what I really wanted the Topshop one to be.



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Get this. It's even shorter than the Topshop one and am I fussed? Not too much providing I don't bend over to pick anything up and I also don't try to reach anything on the top shelf of the supermarket aisle. Either way the result is the same (cue much blushing). Besides, the summer of 2013 put paid to all my fears of not wearing anything unbecoming of a 40 something mum with chubby knees. 

I was too hot to care.

So if anyone out there likes little blue denim shift dresses, can I say, this is rather cute and very comfortable. It is rather short though and I'm saying that as a bonafide midget. However if you are as tall as tall can be, you can wear it as a tunic. I read one of the reviews for it which said "nice top" (chortle chortle). 

Anyway, take some inspiration from this girl ....




... and you can see why I love little denim dresses. I want to look like this when I'm re-incarnated. I'd like to pass on coming back as a cat or a dog. You get rank food.

But I am sorry to say, it is sold out online. And you will have to look in store. And if you strike quick and lucky - you can get it for £17.50 instead of the recommended price of £25 whilst Dotty P's have a promotion on. 


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Last Note :

  • Dress product code is 70261949. You could always ring your local store - I've done it before and they've been pretty obliging. Besides, I know some of you are pretty hard core and will track something down if you really want it enough. And there's nothing like saying "sold out online" to get the bloodlust going is there?
  • Joanna mentioned that I should start wearing some of the clothes that I stash away. She has a point. But I think I can get away with not wearing this just yet as I bought it for the summer. So there! I didn't break my resolution exactly.... I think :o?
  • This one is also kind of cute in a Kirsten Dunst/Carrie Mulligan kind of way. It comes up big though. Size down for a body flattering fit. Stay your own size for a food flattering fit. Would be cute with some pointy sling backs a la fifties style.




Thursday, 9 January 2014

New Balance CM 620 GB



New Balance CM 620 GB


At the same time that I bought the burgundy New Balance 410's, I spotted these grey New Balance 620's in the local outlet. I ummed and ahhed. Burgundy or grey. Burgundy or grey. Grey or burgundy? Grey or burgundy? Arghghgh! I couldn't choose. So how about both? Yeah, let's take both. That might seem a little greedy but I got the burgundy 410's for a silly price so I felt I could justify the grey. 

I bought them and wrapped them and put them under the tree. Merry Christmas to me :o)

And credit to me, I've actually worn them instead of putting them back in their box and saving them for whenever. This is one of my resolutions for 2014. Stop hoarding and start wearing. I'm one of those persons who buys and waits and waits and waits. I know some people who go by the rule of if they haven't worn it within a week, it goes. Not me. I like to do the waiting game and make really sure that I like something. Really really sure.

I have to say I'm not actually sold on trainers with boyfriend jeans on me. They work for a lot of people but I feel too laddish in them worn like that. I do however like them with a slimmer cut jean. And I thought I'd try these with my Next waxed cotton jeans.



Waxed cotton jeans are weird. I like the look but I don't like wearing them. They are cold and slippery. Mine are quite tight (serves me right for over indulging over the festive period) and I also find that when I sit down and cross my legs, my top leg slips off. Anyone else have this problem? And though this pair are actually a great length for tucking in to my Medwinds black boots, they look rubbish full length with the NB's. So I turned them under to get the cropped look I was after. 



H&M coat, H&M scarf, Next waxed jeans, New Balance Trainers


I think I actually prefer these over my burgundy ones. Something about the brown black grey combination which is so spot on for me and my wardrobe.

That's what I wore for the school run yesterday morning and afternoon. In between I had some horrid leggings and a bobbly sweatshirt on for doing the decorating. And the day before I also sported blue hair  (as seen on instagram) after I leant on a freshly painted wall. Doh!


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Last Note :


  • The NB 620's I have were bought at a New Balance outlet so they are not current season stock. I believe they are unisex hence the fact that I managed to get such a small fitting pair but all I can find left online are the large sizes in the mens section at Sarenza and mine were half the price of that advertised. If anyone is really interested, send me an email and I can ring my NB outlet to see if they have any sizes you want left.
  • For some reason, all the NB's I have tried tend to come up small. It was pure luck that I came across these in a 4.5. I'm taking that as a good sign from the Trainer Gods.
  • New Balance is an American English company and manufacturing is done in the US as well as in the UK at Flimby, Cumbria. I kind of like the fact that this pair was was manufactured in the UK - hence the "Made in England" embroidered on the tongue which you don't see on a lot of NB's. A little bit of modern heritage. An oxymoron in a shoe if you like :o)
  • An alternative but similar is the New Balance 501 Backpack which can be found here and here.



  • And last but not least, have you fallen for the trainer trend too?



Monday, 6 January 2014

Food Glorious Food!



Hi again. I've been a bit slack on the old blog front. I know I've been a bit slack because the Grumps said to me yesterday evening "Sue, whatever's going on???" and I said "What do you mean?" mentally trying to recall what I'd racked up on the credit card over Christmas. "You haven't posted since Christmas Eve!" My first thought was "phew it's not the credit card!" My second thought was "hmmm, he has a point".

Admittedly it wasn't my fault - I just haven't been in much. I was abducted by eating drinking aliens aka George's God Parents who persuaded us to stay over on New Years Eve and then bolted the door and wouldn't let us go home for a few days. All we were allowed to do was hang out in jim jams and eat delicious food and be plied with drinks. It was torture :o)  Their evil plan was to make us fat and turn us into weebles. They succeeded.

But we escaped. Back to our cold house complete with bare fridge. But there's no place like home is there? Bare fridge or not.

Confession time now. I slobbed in my slobbiest gear over Christmas and thoroughly enjoyed wearing these joggy bots from Uniqlo. They are slim cut and not the thickest cotton and they do loosen up and bag a little as the day goes on but I was at home and no one was looking and they were very accommodating especially after a few of these :o)

Heston's Spiced Mince Pies #nomnom


I was also very grateful to be slipping them on after a visit to Grandma who's a bit good at cooking.



Beef & Guiness stew with horseradish dumplings served with homemade chips.


and followed by a rather hefty slice of homemade apple pie.

A favourite of the boys. I confess to not finishing mine. My belly protested!


and I may have needed them again after a family meal out ....




See the synchronised chopsticks?


And a visit to the Trafford Centre and a walk past the Selfridges food hall might have resulted in one of these meringues ....



and just one of these salted caramel maccarons coming home with me.

I cannot resist salted caramel anything.


Err ... basically I ate my bodyweight through Christmas. And I have the thighs and belly to show for it.

But something's got to give folks and yesterday was about the first time I stepped out of the door in relatively normal clothes to do a supermarket shop.





After a lovely period of really really relaxed (we are talking joggy bots, joggy bots and more joggy bots) dressing, I felt the need to don real clothes. I nicked the Mulberry scarf from the Grumps wardrobe - this one is a kind of boucle type wool and the colours are very accommodating of anything you want to wear it with. The pattern is the one that you find in the Scotchgrain Mulberry bags of old. And the £14 H&M peacoat which has now sold out got an outing too. I've still not got round to changing the buttons though and that's because I've not ordered my buttons yet. But you know how it is, the world stops at Christmas doesn't it? Or is that just me?

Anyway, this is a quick post to bring me in to 2014 and sums up what I've been doing since my last post. Basically eating a lorra lorra food.

Take it you all did the same?