There's something to be said for weekends which meander along nicely, without too much previous planning.
After all, even the best laid plans can go pear-shaped, while having none at all depends on spontaneous, spur-of-the-moment action!
Last weekend started early, as I'd treated myself to the afternoon off on Friday. It had been raining heavily all day so, when the sun finally decided to grace us with her presence, we rushed outside to take outfit photos.
I was wearing a burnt orange polyester dress, closing with a zip at the front. The zip pull is missing, but I can't be bothered to replace the zip, especially as it's still in good working in order. I was going to replace the zip pull, and even bought one from a haberdashery shop, but there's so little of the original one left that I have as yet find a way to attach it.
The dress's print has bottle green in it, so I piled on the green accessories. I was wearing bottle green tights (a present from my friend Ingrid) as well as a charity shopped cardigan in the same colour. The butterfly brooch was part of my last flea market haul.
If you're interested, this is how I wore the dress back in November 2016.
While we were in the garden, Jos took the opportunity to feed the five thousand or, rather, the birds who treat our garden as a free fast food restaurant. We have several feeders as well as a small bird house (a.k.a. the log cabin) at the back of our garden. Daily visitors are blue tits (Belgium's most frequent garden visitors at a recent count), but we have a resident robin and the occasional wren as well. The one in the middle of the top row was kind enough to pose for me.
Greedy doves often make short shrift with the log cabin's content, leaving the small fry high and dry, so Jos is trying to find a way to keep them out, although his attempts have not been too successful so far.
From time to time, a gang of long-tailed tits pay a noisy visit. They don't sit still for a second, so I was lucky to catch one on camera. The red-berried shrub it's posing in is Cotoneaster, a huge and unruly shrub inherited with the garden. At this time of year, the blackbirds have usually eaten all of the berries, but the deadly Usutu virus has decimated their numbers, and we have hardly seen any blackbirds in our garden for months.
On Saturday, after a leisurely breakfast and some pottering around the house, we were ready to hit the charity shops. In view of the Modish Matron posts from my dear friends Beate, Natalia and Tina, I was determined to wear red.
Out came this dress, its model almost a carbon copy of the dress I was wearing on Friday. After experimenting with several belts, I decided upon a cream textured one, with a mottled plastic buckle and a small dangling plastic fish. This prompted my choice of brooch, a mother of pearl fish, a vintage souvenir brooch from Ostend.
The tights I'm wearing, in a colour called Valerian, are Falke and were picked up in the January sales. As I usually wear cheap 'n cheerful tights, I certainly noticed a difference in quality, although I won't be forking out for full-priced Falke ones any time soon.
I added a chunkly purple necklace and purple-stoned ring.
On top, a comfortable charcoal grey wrap cardie found at Oxfam, originally from H&M. The red poppy in the carved early plastic brooch is picking up the red in the dress again.
I simply had to wear my new coat, even if it was slightly too thin for the start of the cold snap we were having. But, helped with the burgundy faux fur wrap and the double knit woolly hat, I didn't feel the cold too much. I was also wearing my new hot pink gloves!
If you look closely, you will detect some fish in my handbag's clasp as well.
We spent a happy few hours visiting three different shops.
In our most local one, we spotted these colourful 1970s Tupperware mugs, complete with lids, which can also be used as coasters. I'm surprised they weren't kept aside for the Retro Day. Somebody has not been doing their jobs ...
Don't they look cheerful, though? As we are avid picnickers, they will certainly come in handy.
Talking of coming in handy, I couldn't have come across these two scarves at a better moment. As we are in the middle of a cold snap, they have been on constant rotation this week.
I found some great jewellery as well.
While we were waiting at the till in one of the shops, I spotted this gorgeous necklace, combining green and black beads with rows of felt circles.
These two brooches were hiding in a display cabinet in another shop. I've found great stuff there before, so I always make a beeline for it when entering the shop.
The large oval brooch is enamel and marked "made in West Germany", while the smaller one, which is unmarked and more recent, is ceramic. They were € 0,50 each.
Our final find of the day was this vintage souvenir clog from Bruges (Brugge in Flemish). It proudly displays the beautiful city's tall belfry.
These clogs are typical souvenirs, with a pincushion and space for a thimble. As was to be expected, it was missing its thimble, but I replaced it with one which used to belong to my grandmother.
After sticking some red-headed pins into the pincushion, it is now ready to join our little collection of delightfully kitsch souvenir items.
By now, the weekend was still only half way, but what we did on Sunday, and more specifically, which treasures we found, will be for a next post!
Meanwhile, I'm linking to Patti's Visible Monday at Not Dead Yet Style, as usual.