In all honesty, the season could hardly be classed as Winter in terms of weather. We've only had a handful of frosty days and there was even less snow than usual. Instead, it seemed like one long, grey and wet Autumn (the nasty stage!) merging into early Spring.
No wait, we already had Spring, didn't we? It was the sunny intermezzo we had for two weeks or so in February, which was followed by very windy and very wet weather.
This is the time of year when I'm critically eyeing my Winter wardrobe, looking at any unworn items and putting aside anything I don't think I'll ever wear again. This, mind you, isn't an easy task, as I usually find it hard to part with things I once loved. But I'm learning! Baby steps, though.
The absence of a really cold Winter means that there are quite a few - more than usual - unworn things in my wardrobe. My warmest dresses, woollen skirts and jumpers: I hardly had any use for them and, unless we're faced with a very late Beast from the East, I'm probably done with them for this season.
Last Saturday, as a last attempt to wear any other items which remained unworn, I pulled out this handmade shift dress, which has the grooviest of prints.
When I found it at Blender Vintage Shop, a gem of a shop that's sadly no longer trading, the sleeves had turned-up cuffs closing with two gold buttons.
However, the turn-ups made the sleeves a tiny bit too short and too narrow, which is why I hardly ever wore it. But oh, I loved that print, and pretty much else about the dress, apart from those pesky sleeves. So, I took it out, had a good look at the cuffs and noticed that the finish looked quite alright on the reverse side. Thus, I removed the buttons and moved them to what was once the inside of the cuffs, making the sleeves longer and less restricted in the process. Oh, and I replaced those boring gold ones with ... green buttons!
It's obvious that it's not going to exit my wardrobe any time soon now!
I topped my frock with a burnt orange cardigan, to which I pinned a brown-bodied cat brooch, a present from Goody. Brown vintage beads and a plastic orange ring with shimmering green specks were my other accessories.
The rain had temporarily stopped, but with a gale force wind blowing, the weather was best suited for staying indoors. However, we did escape for a brief charity shop rummage after lunch.
I was back to wearing my Princess coat and was glad of its warmth with all that wind. My sage green beret came from Think Twice and the orange plaid scarf was a charity shop find.
So were the boots, which cost all of € 2, and which I've been wearing constantly. They are super comfortable, their only disadvantage being that they are pull-on ones. I'm also wearing an old pair of green opaques.
We drove down to a charity shop we hardly ever visit these days, to have a look at the leftovers of Retrodag. I almost got a fit when I saw a vintage handbag - OK, it was a nice one but still - priced at € 50. I actually threw it down in disgust ...
Purely out of habit, I had a look at the jewellery, some of which is displayed in a - very scratched - glass topped drawer built into the counter. I thought I detected a carved celluloid brooch, and if my eyes weren't deceiving me, its price label said € 1.
I wasted no time in asking if I could have a look at the drawer's contents.
These are the ones that came home with me for the ridiculous total price of € 7. I admit I couldn't help gloating just a little bit.
On the top left is the brooch I'd first spied. Continuing clockwise, this one is very similar to one I've already got, but at € 1 I wasn't going to leave it behind. In the end, it turned out to be sufficiently different to justify keeping them both.
The delicate brooch on the bottom right might be missing some of its little flowers, but € 0,50 seemed a fair price for it. The little holes on both sides of the stag brooch (bottom left) are a clear indication that something is missing from it, although I have no idea what. It's perfectly wearable, though, and at € 1, I was prepared to give it a home.
Scottie dogs were a popular subject for brooches and other novelty jewellery from the 1930s onwards. I'm presuming these two are 1950s.
The twosome of dogs on the left used to have movable heads but age, possibly with the aid of some glue, has put paid to any further movement.
The brown Scottie beating a drum was priced at € 0,5. This in itself was sweet revenge for the ridiculously priced handbag, as I already have two of these brooches. See here. I don't remember what I paid for the plain green one which was bought from an antiques shop in Cardigan, but my blog tells me I paid € 20 (with reduction!) for the black one, found at a flea market last year.
I'm always on the lookout for cheap 'n cheerful vintage novelty brooches. These charming ones were € 0,50 each. My favourite is the one on the bottom right, the girl holding an umbrella over a gaggle of ducks.
Needless to say, I'm very pleased with my haul, as brooch pickings had been rather meagre lately.
Before going home, we stopped at the charity shop in our village, where the Retrodag remnants included six egg cups with matching spoons, still in their original packing, as well as an Emsa party dish.
The egg cups have been added to our kitchen display, while the party dish has already been roped in to house some of my jewellery collection.
So that were our charity shop finds, but I still need to show you what I picked up earlier that week at Think Twice, who were having another one of their famous sales.
It had been quite a while since I had a decent haul there as well.
The floral Diolen frock with its butterfly sleeves was € 5. Its print is very reminiscent of the one in this dress.
As a lover of green, I simply can't have enough green frocks! Isn't this one fabulous? I fell in love with its mix of plain green and printed bodice and its gorgeous chevron patterned skirt. This was € 5 as well.
This plain green dress (yes, another one!) isn't even vintage but from Belgian label Wow To Go.
Back in 2012, I used to have the same model of dress but in burgundy, with a burgundy and turquoise striped bodice. I dearly loved that dress but it had become too snug, so eventually I gave it away to a friend.
You can see part of it in this photo dating from way back. Note the very short hair and the tiny spectacles. And Phoebe!
As this green version is a perfect fit and in pristine condition, I couldn't hand over my € 4 fast enough.
Meanwhile, I've selected some dresses and other stuff I no longer love and bagged them up ready for our next trip to the charity shops.
There, you see, I can do it!