Sunday, 26 June 2016

Sunday Shoes 111..

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Minoa heels: Irregular Choice

I can tell you that I've been super excited about these particular shoes arriving with me, although at the same time I was for some reason convinced that there'd be some kind of problem and they'd sell out, or not arrive. I'm not sure why, but it did take me a few phone calls to the stores to establish that there just weren't any left in the UK, in blue, so I had to take my search a little further afield. 

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In the end, I managed to find a pair in America on Tilted Sole. Delivery was great, although I'd panicked a little when I got an email to say there was a delay as they'd have to find stock in a store, but they arrived with me in a little over a week from the US. All good. 

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I knew I wanted the blue colourway, which features the same metallic snakeskin effect leather on the uppers as my Can't Touch This heels. The fronts of these shoes feature a snake's head, complete with eyes and tongue, ready to pounce. 

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Minoa are a comparable height to the majority of my Irregular Choice courts - with a regular round stiletto heel the same as recent styles like Smartie Pants, which makes them super comfortable in my opinion. A wonderful day to day shoe with a kind of understated design (well, for IC anyway). I really love them and am glad I didn't *quite* miss out!

Saturday, 25 June 2016

On the buses..

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Dress: Cath Kidston // Hat: H+M
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Toodle Loo heels: Irregular Choice // Socks: ASOS
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Bag: LYDC // Cardigan: H+M

I'm not really sure about this outfit. I've been trying hard to wear some more of my hats, but I'm just not entirely convinced this one suits me. Maybe I need to try and figure out a more 20s hair style.

I've also been trying to wear my way through some of the things in my wardrobes which haven't seen the light of day in goodness knows how long. So I dug out this dress, which I last wore in London in 2014. Time for a re-wear I think. In theory I'm trying to be ruthless and find things I don't wear anymore which I can add to my wardrobe sale, but we all know that's unlikely to happen. Even though I need the space as I've finally had some time to do a little sewing, of late. 

This weekend is set to be another one of those manic ones, with a million and one errands to run, so I'm hoping that the weather plays fair. I'm sure it won't, but we'll make the most of it anyway.

Friday, 24 June 2016

Friday Favourites 201..

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001 // 002 // 003 // 004 // 005


A rotten day to end a relatively rotten week, it seems. Can't wait for today to end so that I can head out for a run to clear my head. I've been thinking more and more about new running shoes this week as my current ones don't seem to be doing my feet any favours, so I'm definitely going to find some time over the weekend to pop into the running shop in town for a gait analysis (hark at me and my use of technical words - someone else told me about this, you understand!)

So anyway, this naturally got me thinking about the other things I'd like to replace and / or add to in my gym kit. I swear the washing machine is on constantly of late, trying to keep up.

001: My Nike leggings have certainly been the best of all of the pairs I've had, and I currently wear them at least twice / week, so I'm getting good use from them. I'm therefore fairly tempted to replace a couple of the pairs of cheaper leggings with this one, as I know they'll be decent quality and totally suited to gym workouts and running.

002: F+F have been another place I've been really pleased with the quality of their leggings and this pair ticks all of the boxes for me - affordable, full-length, decent fabric. I don't ask for much!

003: Ah, trainers. I'm waiting to see what the dreaded analysis says, but having asked on Twitter earlier, I was recommended these Asics running shoes by several different people, so I'm quite interested in these. Plus, I've always found SportsShoes.com to be a great place for sports wear.

004: I've been "running naked" for a good while now (apparently that's the term for those who don't track their running endeavours using a smart watch. Although it's not really a huge concern for me, I'm beginning to wonder if a Garmin would be a good addition to my gym kit. I've had a play with one belonging to a pal, and he's full of good things to say about it, so maybe. The good points as I understand it about this particular model is that I can also swim with it, so that would be good as none of the Fitbit models I've tried have been able to do that.

005: Speaking of swimming, I swear I get through swimming costumes like there's no tomorrow. I guess the pool at my gym is particularly chemically, or something, as they just seem to wear out. So, this Adidas one is currently top of my list - I'm kinda fussy about swimsuits: they need to have proper straps and support - one of the only things in my wardrobe where I actually consider function over fashion!

Anything caught your eye this week...?

Thursday, 23 June 2016

She ain't no English rose..

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Dress: Tu Clothing // Shrug: New Look
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Cottage Bag: Vendula London
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Pearly Girly heels: Irregular Choice

Well, today's been a struggle to be honest. One of those days which is almost as dramatic as a Lynda Snell production (okay, nothing is quite that bad). There's a big part of me voting for sacking off the gym this evening and just going straight to bed. But I know I'll feel better after a run and a kettlebells class, so I won't. 

Anyhow, new things alert. I popped into Sainsbury's the other day on a mission to try and find a floral shirt and a stripey dress, neither of which were in my local store, nor on the website anymore. However, in a predictable turn of events, I did come away with something - this floral dress. They've got some pretty awesome clothes in their range at the moment. 

100% cotton and a lovely fresh rose print in blue and green, I was sold almost immediately and couldn't wait to wear it, so teamed it with my Pearly Girly heels and a pearly necklace which was a gift from a pal and my old favourite Vendula London cottage handbag.

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Yarn Along {9}



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It's been a little while since I joined in with the Yarn Along, because if I'm honest, it's been a little while since I picked up my knitting. I've had too much to juggle lately and things like this are the ones which slide first. 

However, knowing I had a 24 hour race to watch at the weekend, I packed my current project to take with me and have made some progress. I'm currently making the Majestic Moose vest from Andi Satterlund and have little to report - it's all going well thus far. 
As for books. I seem to be between tomes once again (I tend to speed my way to the end of a book in readiness for a Tuesday Titles post), but I'm about to start this, which popped through my letterbox last week.

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Linking up with Ginny's #yarnalong

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Tuesday Titles 096..

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A Spool of Blue Thread : Anne Tyler
Every now and then a book comes along which really consumes me. Where I'll start reading one minute and all of a sudden I've been running for an hour, completely and utterly immersed in the world of the characters. In this case, the Whitshanks, who have lived in the house with the blue porch swing for the past three generations. Kind of.

Introduced first to the current generation - Abby and Red Whitshank bring up their four children as well as they can, with Abby's selfless and kind nature causing her to also open up her home to any number of people in need, referred to by her children as her "orphans". There was a particularly poignant moment in Abby's story for me, as she begins to feel that once she's retired from her profession as a social worker, and all of the people she's helped have moved on without her, no longer needing her input, perhaps she is reduced to nothing. I think this resonated with me mostly because Abby's traits remind me very much of someone I know.

Although there are family secrets which have been kept for years, which come out during the course of the story, it's quite a gentle book, about getting older and how family life has a habit of moving on, whether you expect it to or not. Everything changes, and those little decisions you make, about whether to introduce yourself to the family who have been renting the holiday cottage next to yours every year for as long as you can recall, or not, can have a lasting effect on things, even if it might not seem so at the time.

As Red and Abby get older, their children, with their own families, come together to try and figure out the best way to support their parents, and sibling rivalries have a way of coming back, as though time hasn't changed things at all. Their sons, Denny and Stem haven't quite managed to put the years behind them. 

Ad the idea of leaving the family home is thrown around, the next part of the book tells us all there is to know about Red's parents and how they came to live in their Baltimore house in the first place. Their love story perhaps not the most traditional, but did Red and Abby make up for that?

I really enjoyed this, even if I can't quite put my finger on a precise reason why. I could have read twice as much about the Whitshanks again, without any bother: quietly enjoyable. 


Monday, 20 June 2016

I've got two left feet and I'm starting to cheat.

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Clio dress: Lindy Bop // Cardigan: New Look
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Tights: Meadham Kirchhoff x Topshop //  Bowtiful heels: Irregular Choice
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Picnic Basket Bag: Accessorize

Monday lunchtime and already I'm exhausted. Partly my own fault, as I've not had enough sleep this weekend what with having to stay awake all night at a guides sleepover at the prison on Friday evening and then staying up to watch as much of the 24 hours Le Mans live coverage as possible. 

Feeling less than inspired by the weather on the first official day of summer (yes, really), I decided to give my new Lindy Bop Clio dress a wear, along with these tights, which arrived to me via a blogsale this weekend. I totally missed the Meadham Kirchhoff x Topshop collection when it hit the shops (I'm never quick enough off the mark for these kinds of things) but these tights are superb so I'm glad I managed to find a pair eventually (thanks, Clare!).

As for the Clio dress, I'm also really glad I held out for this one rather than the Christie, which I'd considered when it hit the site. I really like the ric rac detail on this one. The cotton material is pretty thick - no need for a petticoat underneath as it keeps it's shape nicely - and the Venice print is super cute (I'm a sucker for a scenic print).

Also, my picnic basket bag definitely needed an outing, sunshine or no sunshine, along with some well-loved Irregular Choice heels. Happy Summer Solstice!