Monday, 4 November 2019

Staircat


Dull November brings the blast,
Then the leaves are whirling fast.
~Sara Coleridge, "The Months," 1834

And it's not just the leaves that are whirling fast, either. October too, has whirled past in a blur of dull rainy days. We've hardly had any proper, leaf-kicking, Autumn weather to speak of yet and those days which seem to be made for walks in the woods, to simply enjoy the sights, sounds and scents of the season, could be counted on the fingers of one hand.

And now, without a backward glance, she's bade us farewell, perfidious October, and passed the Autumnal torch to that misery of a month, November.

But there will be one more backward glance from me before I'm putting the lid firmly on the box labelled October.


So, for the sake of the continuity of this blog, I'm taking you back to that month's last weekend.

Let's start with what I was wearing on Friday! 

This cheerful little frock, in purple with a lilac and pink flower print and row of tiny blue buttons, came from a shop in Antwerp called Melting Pot, which sells vintage and second hand clothes at € 15 per kilo! It's a bit of a jumble of a shop, but I've managed to unearth the odd treasure.

The dress is long-sleeved and lined, and there's every indication that it was handmade. I opted for bright pink to accessorize it. Both the belt and the beads were charity shopped, while the chunky ring was an old retail buy.


As we had an important task to fulfill, I left work early on Friday: we were cat-sitting Abby, the delightful British Shorthair belonging to Jos's son and daughter-in-law.

They only live about 10 minutes up the road from us and, as they were enjoying a couple of days away, we were only too glad to go and feed madam, and keep her company for an hour or so.

I was wearing my recently purchased faux-Lea Stein cat brooch in her honour.


I always surprise Abby's servants with a photo session of their little monster, but I'm sure they were none too pleased when they saw the antics of their butter wouldn't melt darling using the back of the sofa as a scratching post and molesting plants!


Phew, cat-sitting is quite exhausting, especially as we're no longer used to such playfulness. Our Phoebe's clearly above such matters, preferring to use our sofa for naps. And more naps!

Here's a proper look at what beyond any doubt is my favourite pair of boots. They're vintage and were snapped up at Think Twice last Winter. For the record, I am wearing nylons here! The chartreuse long cardigan was another charity shop find. 


Saturday morning was spent changing around my coats wardrobe which basically consists of putting the coats of the season in the left segment within easy reach. There will be further changes when Autumn segues into Winter. The coats which are currently on rotation live downstairs in the hallway.


I can't wait to wear my berets again, and not just for their warmth either. They are perfect for bad hair days as well. Look at all those glorious colours! I've got more, but they didn't fit in the picture ...



Now what could be that strange illumination in the sky? The headlights of a spaceship, perhaps? I'm so glad I've got my twin with me, so that we can clutch each other in fear!


After lunch, we were off to visit Her Royal Highness again, a tiresome task that we made lighter by combining it with some charity shopping. 

It seems I was wearing variations on a theme that weekend, embracing above the knee frocks two days in a row.

I actually woke up thinking I would love to wear this vintage shift dress, but scouring my wardrobe's rails, I could find no trace of it. Then I remembered I put it in the "shall I keep it or not" pile. What in heaven's name was I thinking?



The dress is of Scandinavian descent, from the Swedish "Aspens" label, and the fabric it's made from is called "asplene".

Fun fact: when I googled the label, one of my own posts from 2017 came up in the search results!

I combined it with chartreuse opaques, a long pink cardi (I definitely need more of these!), and my tan boots which cost all of € 2 in a charity shop last year. 

My accessories were ivory coloured carved beads, a dusky pink vintage brooch and a fused glass ring I bought in Bruges back in April.


Look at that little diva stealing my limelight! 

Seriously, though, I wish we could rent that staircase as a photo studio, as it has proved to be just perfect for outfit photos.

Additionally, there's a huge slab of reinforced glass between the kitchen on the ground floor and the sitting room on the second floor, which we gladly made use of for some photographical experiments.



Before returning to Dove Cottage, we drove down to the charity shop at the edge of our village for a well-needed rummage.

There were shoes and boots galore! Among the mass of scruffy blacks and browns, I spotted this pristine pair of bright blue ankle boots, which have just enough of a heel not to torture my knees and back.



These two Mid Century wall plaques, clearly leftovers from the previous week's retro event, caught my eye. 

The larger one is signed Rufinelli, Assisi on the back, while the smaller one only mentions Made in Italy. I do, however, suspect they're both from the same pottery. 

They are about to join the crowd on the wall of heads in our spare room. 



As lately I seem to have a penchant for wearing separates, I've been on the lookout for more skirts, especially since some of last Winter's have become a tiny bit too snug. After coming away empty handed for weeks, I struck gold that day, as I found no less than four. 

From top to bottom: a Wow To Go chevron print midi skirt, a classic Prince of Wales check midi skirt, a vintage handmade black floral skirt and a cotton retro print circle skirt, also handmade, all of which are expected to make their debut on the blog shortly.



So, that was it for now and I'm leaving you with another seasonal quote. See you next time!


The drifting clouds are dark and drear,
The blossoms die of cold and fear,
The wild wind mourns the fading year,
And winter threatens near.
~Elizabeth Chase Akers Allen, "November", c.1864



43 comments:

  1. Hopefully, November won't be too grey and wet. All the best.

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  2. I'm hoping Mother Nature follows your lead this month and brightens things around you to make up for the dreary October. (I think I saw a photo on your IG with sun reflecting off windows, so here's hoping my wish is coming true!)

    Her Highness sure is an adorable furry photo bomber. You both look quite smashing with the lighting of that great staircase.

    Hugs,
    Sherry

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    1. Thank you Sherry! We did have a couple of sunny days in the meantime, but some rainy ones as well. xxx

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  3. Hope November behaves and gives you plenty of good weather. We set our clocks back last weekend and I immediately felt better driving out this morning in light. Yes, it gets darker earlier but that getting dressed in the dark was terrible.

    You are dressed to perfection. Love, love, love that pink cardigan and your over-the-knee dresses are fab. Glad you didn't follow through and get rid of the blue/green one.

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    1. I don't mind so much that it's still dark in the mornings, but I hate it when it starts getting dark so early, while I'm still at the office. It would have happened eventually, I know, but then it would have been gradually. xxx

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  4. Ha ha someone else's house sure is perfect for outfit photos! Love the staircase and that glass bottom. I'll bet they have a wonderful interior! Those blue boots look terrific!

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    1. Thanks Nancy, and yes, they do have a wonderful interior. Not really my style, but I think you would definitely approve. xxx

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  5. The stairs are THE perfect photo background! Alas, our stairs are carpetted but you did make me think whether to try them for taking photos on. Hmmmm...
    Loving your new skirt materials.
    The cat is SO pretty!!!! They ARE a pain to look after though, esp if one has to get pills down their throat - I had a few stints of trying to give cats pills when I looked after them!x

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    1. Thank you Kezzie, and I did see your stairs picture. Our stairwell really is too dark for photos. And it's always a hassle trying to get cats to take medicine. Why can't they make them tuna flavoured, I wonder? xxx

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  6. You look great.. so many great prints.

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  7. Abby is stunning. No wonder she gets away with murder.

    Those stairwell shots turned out great. The lighting is fantastic. The one of you floating in the sky looked pretty cool too. I guess no one is standing around in dresses up there. LOL

    The colour of those boots is fab!

    Suzanne
    http://www.suzannecarillo.com

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    1. Ha, I hadn't even thought about that. We will be spending Christmas with them, so I'll have to take care on what to wear ;-) xxx

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  8. Aw, Abby is a gorgeous kitty, and she is definitely a diva. I'm loving your beautiful long cardis with your outfits here, Ann. You're tempting me to dig my chartreuse one out of the giveaway pile - it looks so good with bright pink!

    I love the blue booties! They are amazing. Wishing you and Jos a good week!

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    1. I'm glad to have inspired you to retrieve your chartreuse cardi from your giveaway pile. Oh, and yes, Abby is certainly a diva! xxx

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  9. Wow, Abby is just gorgeous with her golden/orange eyes.

    I love that picture with all your berets. They look marvelous. I’m a bit like that too, once I adore something, I like to slowly collect one in every colour! X

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    1. Thank you Jess. I love wearing berets and keep on adding to my collection. I've just bought a dusky pink one! xxx

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  10. uh I would like to have such stairs. Your photos are great and there is space for two models ( little monster :)) ).
    Rainy days all time, its a challenge to take pics for outfitposts.
    Your berets have wonderful colours. I have one Antwerp charity shoped beret in my closet :)
    Your outfits are amazing, they look like better weather days ;)
    a very huge hug Tina

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    1. I'd love to have such stairs too, Tina, but alas! How wonderful that you have a beret charity shopped in Antwerp! xxx

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  11. lying on that glass with vertigo - chapeau!!!
    and yes - staircase is a perfect photo spot - it even has daylight! loooove this pics <3
    abby is very cute! and naugty - of cause - a young cat has to be, to make up for such overwelming cuteness :-D
    till amazed about the shoes landing in your 2.hand shops....here only the black/brown scruffy ones.
    the paisley shift dress is gorgeous - esp. like that you wear it without a belt and the long cardi..... a new look for you.
    gorgeous skirt haul!
    hugsies! xxxxx

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    1. Thank you Beate! Wasn't it brave of me to lie down on that glass. Normally I don't even like walking on it. xxx

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  12. The stairs a brilliant photo venue! Couldn't you 'borrow' it occasionally for the future?

    I loved your purple and pink outfit; all the fab accessories and the cat brooch was lovely. Talking of cats what a beauty that cat is - and doesn't she know it!

    Loved the paisley dress on you - don't give it away it looks too good on you to do that. Loved it with the chartreuse tights. If you wanted to be matchy-matchy you could wear it with your chartreuse cardigan...

    We've had lots of leaves come down and they're fun to walk and scuff your way through but what a pain the you know where; when they blow in the house every time the front or back door is opened. I do hope your weather has improved - we have sun and rain today...
    xxxx

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    1. That Paisley dress won't be going anywhere now. I've no idea what made me put it in the giveaway pile. Yes, we'll definitely try borrowing that staircase from time to time! xxx

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  13. What a smashing area for a photoshoot! You wouldn't catch Jon on that glass block though!!
    Abby is gorgeous and obviously adores you. Look at how she's captivated by your fabulousness. I love how you've paid homage to her beauty with your not-Leah-Stein cat brooch!
    Those blue ankle boots are fab and i'm glad you rescued the dress from the give away pile - why do we do such crazy things? Your rainbow of berets is a joy to behold!
    I've got the matching vase to your Italian lava stone wall plaques, they're so groovy! xxx

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    1. Imagine you having the matching vase! Well, to be honest, I am not all that surprised! xxx

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  14. Love both your dresses but that second shift one is the best - how good you could rescue ti form the maybe pile, definitely a keeper! beautiful house for photos too and what a cute cat to cat-sit!

    Hope that your week is going well :) It's a very hot one here! More like summer than spring!

    Away From Blue

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    1. Thank you so much Mica! It's getting a lot colder here, but at least we're getting to see the sun! xxx

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  15. Isn't this weather crazy! We've just had a winter with little rain, but now that spring is here we're getting regular buckets of it. It certainly puts a damper on outdoor photos! Hope you manage to get some shots outdoors through autumn as the colours of the trees are magnificent.

    Anyway, your shots on the staircase are fantastic: the light is just perfect. You may want to ask your stepson+daughter-in-law if you can use it more often. How fantastic it is having their gorgeous cat in the photos.

    Both dresses are lovely. I think I like the purple one more. I am fond of hand-made dresses: I like the uniqueness of it. Also like the longer length cardigan. I have a few and they can be worn over most things. What's the skin-toned nylons about? Is that a first for you?

    I've never heard of charity shops selling items by the kilo. Is that common in Belgium?

    Your wardrobe of coats is amazing! Just as I had guessed, there are no plain, boring colours. Such a delightful choice. As are your colourful berets - just beautiful.

    Love your new wall plaques. They should sit nicely with your other lovelies. Can't wait to see your blue boots and new skirts on future posts. No doubt you will style them up perfectly.

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    1. Thank you once again for your lovely comment, Suzy! I am fond of hand-made dresses too, as there certainly won't be another one out there. I often wear skin-toned nylons when wearing shorter length dresses, I'm not such a big fan of my legs. The shop selling items per kilo is a rarity, although we do have one or two charity shops who sell the things which have remained unsold in their normal shops per kilo. xxx

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  16. The weather might be dull, but your style is brighter than the sun. I love that first outfit you are wearing. Lovely printed dress, fab pink belt and accessories. The green cardi you paired it with is so chic.
    The only second hand shop that I know of in Split sells clothes by the kilo too. Perfect place to hunt for scarves as they weight and thus cost practically nothing.

    Oh my, that is one adorable cat and seems very friendly. She is quite a beauty too.

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  17. whatever the weather you look fabulous!
    Love your purple dress with the mustard cardi and pink accessories and the perfect themed brooch!. And also love your blue dress (magnificent print) with pink cardi, so beautiful colors!.
    And obviously, I admire Her Royal Highness' ability to steal the show!. Love those pictures of both of you on the staircase! (what a fab staircase actually!) and all the photographic experiments! ;DD
    Those booties look fabulous, and I'm glad that you were lucky to find those skirts, I can see some interesting textures and prints!
    besos

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    1. Thank you Monica! Purple and mustard are quite striking together, aren't they? I too am glad I rescued the dress. It's not going anywhere now! xxx

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  18. que guapa vas, tu vestido me gusta mucho

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  19. Both the dresses are very nice :)
    Hi would you like to follow each other?
    Fifty Shades Fashion Blog

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  20. Abby is such a beauty. And the only cat I know that will pose for a photo!
    I did chuckle at the glass photo experiment!
    I thought I'd expanded my oat collection with buying two coats in the last two months but I see I have a way to go to rival your collection (which just gives me permission to buy more).
    xx

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    1. She certainly is, Hazel, and it's as if she knows it too! I find coats hard to resist, and I've just found another jacket this week ;-) xxx

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  21. Abby is such a cutie - those amber eyes! It looks like she got up to plenty of mischief to entertain herself. As did you on that glass window... it's a great shot.

    That's a good skirt haul! The retro print on the bottom one looks very 'Memphis Group'

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