Life at Dove Cottage has been rather quiet lately.
If during lockdown back in Spring, my creative juices were flowing and a surge of energy got me ticking off things on my to-do list one after the other, this gradually dwindled over Summer, until they both came to a grinding halt by late August.
My batteries recharged after our week away, I had great expectations, but alas, the energy I'd saved up was soon consumed by the worries and uncertainties created by an alarmingly increasing infection rate. Back to square one, it seems.
It doesn't really help that the weather hasn't been on its best behaviour either, with wet and windy days adding to the general doom and gloom.
Some days are better than other, of course, but there is one constant that's keeping me from the brink. Getting dressed up will always be a joy, a bright spark on even the darkest of days. And no, I don't think that is shallow at all. It's therapy!
The dress I was wearing two weeks ago on Friday (eek, that long ago already?) was a Think Twice find last Autumn, plucked from the rails less than a minute after the shop assistant had hung it up.
I fell head over heels for its monochromatic print dotted with red and green hexagons. More geometry was added in the form of my necklace, a chain of wooden, jigsaw-like circles, octagons and rectangles, some of them picking up the red from the dress's print.
Green was almost the obvious choice for my cardigan and opaques, while I threw in delicious caramels for my belt, boots and stag's head brooch. Everything but the boots was a charity shop find at one time or another.
As was the amazing grey, black and lime swirly coat, which I found new with tags in a charity shop back in February. My outfit was completed with a well-needed scarf, echoing the green of my opaques.
It was Friday, which in these pandemic times has replaced Saturday as our weekly date with the charity shops, as they are obviously much quieter on a weekday.
There's only a limited number which we deem safe enough due to their size and layout but, always willing to try out new haunts, we decided to check out a large Oxfam shop in one of our neighbouring villages. After having given it a wide berth for years, we were pleasantly surprised at its transformation, so that it has now been added to our list of approved shops.
The jewellery display near the entrance, for starters, enticed me with no less than four necklaces.
Then, while Jos browsed the vinyl, CD's and DVD's, I perused the well-stocked clothing rails, where my heart made a happy jump upon spying one of my holy grails: a midi-length skirt in a sturdy and slightly stretchy denim. I'd been looking for one in my size, and which ticked all my boxes, for well over a year.
On that note, I'm leaving you with a selection of brooches I shared on Instagram earlier this year, including all of my brolly brooches as well as a couple of fans. The latter, of course, I won't be needing anytime soon!
Wishing you all a wonderful weekend, wherever you are, and please do stay safe!