Friday, 30 July 2021

Oh my fur and whiskers

So much to do, so little time! Like Alice's White Rabbit I've got one eye on the clock, but still the hurrier I go, the behinder I get. So - oh my fur and whiskers - I'm late, I'm late, for this very important date ... with blogland.

How I can relate with the poor White Rabbit, being forever strapped for time. And forever, as we all know, sometimes lasts just one second. A blink of the eye, and the day is over and done with, and before I know it another week has passed. I'm not at all sure I like this full-time working lark very much! Covid worries aside, I much preferred last year's slower pace of life.

Taking up my journal where I left off, we have now arrived on Monday the 12th of July. 

Miserable and grey but quite humid at 23°C, it wasn't a day with much going for it. On top of that, I was feeling quite unwell and extremely tired, which I put down to a side effect of Friday's jab.

As luck would have it, it wasn't very busy at work, so with the purpose of clearing my head, I went for a little walk during lunch break. I may even have indulged in some retail therapy, buying a pair of bright pink palazzos in the Mango sales. Don't worry, you'll get to see me wearing them later in this post.

I was feeling marginally better by the time I got home, and even dragged myself outside for outfit photos in which, surprisingly, there is little or no sign of tiredness.

Perhaps this is due to all those brightening lilacs in my outfit?

The dress I was wearing was the one I picked up in the Think Twice sales the other week. Knowing a good thing when I see it, I wore the same belt I used on Angelica when I photographed the dress for a previous post. The shiny vinyl belt with its rectangular buckle was an ancient charity shop find.

Further accessories were a violet beaded necklace and a pink-hearted flower brooch, while contrast was provided by a pair of tomato red sandals.

A grey and cloudy day awaited us on Tuesday, when a drop in temperature to 20°C came accompanied with the odd shower and a quite usummery blustery wind.

Although I hadn't slept very well that night, the episode of extreme tiredness episode seemed to have passed, which was quite a relief.

No outfit photos were taken after work, though, as by then I was ready for a lie down. But not before taking a stroll through the garden, noting that all was as well as could be.

The temperature took another tumble on Wednesday, when all the weather gods had to offer was a measly 17°C.  

For fear of sounding like a broken record, it was yet another grey, wet and miserable day. The wind was still causing havoc too, and it felt so chilly inside that I even put on the heating at some point during the evening.

We managed a quick round of outfit photos to show you the charity shopped King Louie dress I was wearing. Although it was quite unintentional, the turquoise cardigan I wore on top was King Louie too.

The orange belt with its elasticated back was an old high street buy, while both the brooch and and the off-white necklace were flea market finds. 

The inclement weather made me grab for nylons and ankle boots that morning. In this sorry excuse for a Summer, my sandals remain seriously underused .

On days like these, I'm especially thankful for the rays of sunshine provided by garden stalwarts such as - clockwise from top left - Nasturtium, Black-eyed Susan, Helenium and Gaillardia!  Aren't they a veritable sight for sun-starved eyes?

It never rains but it pours! And that's exactly what it did non-stop, all day, on Thursday, resulting in the epic and devastating floods in the south of Belgium, in which over 40 people would lose their lives and which would leave thousands homeless. 

I kept an eye out of the window, as I had to brave the rain for a hairdresser's appointment, but I was in luck, as it had stopped raining for all of the ten minutes it took me to get to the salon! 

I had my usual colour and cut and I was happy to hear Michel, my lovely hairdresser, declare that both sides of the French bob I'm aiming for are now almost in sync. I also had my fringe cut quite a bit shorter, which I'm delighted with it.

As it was still raining when I got home, we had to resort to taking outfit photos with the aid of my umbrella.

The dress is one of my beloved Diolen Delights from Think Twice and has already made several appearances on the blog. It also had the honour of accompanying me to the UK twice, in 2018 on an outing to Erddig in Wales (here) and in 2019 when we visited Ironbridge (here).

Green seems to be my go-to colour to accessorize it, and this time was no different, as I added a green belt, beaded necklace and cardigan. 

The vintage dog brooch, its little pink bow tying in with the dress, was a flea market find.

In spite of the at times ominous looking sky, it remained dry all day on Friday, with the temperature climbing a couple of degrees to highs of 21°C.

A stroll through the garden after breakfast was rewarded with quite a few surprises. Much to my joy, the sorry looking Verbascum (above, bottom right) we brought back from the garden centre in May seems to be thriving, pushing several spikes of tiny yellow flowers skywards.

Then there are the first jewel coloured pincushions of Scabiosa 'Barocca', not your run-of-the-mill Scabious but one with a difference.

Our Japanese Anemone (top left) is flowering early this year. The changeable, at times almost Autumn-like weather, must have confused it, as last year its first flower buds only appeared in the second half of August!

Much promise is being shown by the Phlox (bottom right) we planted earlier this year. At the time of writing it is blooming its head off, but even with its tiny flower buds crowned by bronze tinged leaves it is a joy to behold. This is Phlox 'Sweet Summer Wine', by the way.

My outfit was built around the bright pink palazzo trousers I bought in the Mango sales on Monday. Well, officially they are culottes, but definitely not on tiny me!

I thought the William Morris for H&M blouse I found at Oxfam at the tail end of last year would be their perfect companion, and indeed I felt fabulous in this outfit, its flapper vibes complimenting my new hairdo!

A bottle green mock croc belt, vintage mother-of-pearl brooch and ivory coloured carved beaded necklace completed my outfit.

We were off to the charity shops after breakfast, for which I added my faithful workhorse of a dark denim jacket - charity shopped, obviously - on which I pinned a pale pink felted flower corsage. The scarf was once bought retail, from H&M if I remember correctly.

The blush pink retro style shoes I charity shopped in February couldn't be more perfect to finish my outfit.

Here's a quick look at that day's charity shop bounty.

As a lover of all things green, it was almost a given that this top sprinkled with clusters of orange flowers followed me home, while the ethnic print cotton skirt landed in my basket as well.

I'm loving the different shades of blue in the floral pattern of the vintage skirt (shown below), which is lined to provide additional swishiness. No pockets, though.

Both skirts have been worn satisfactorily in the meantime and will be featured in a future post.

The vintage blouse is missing a button, but as I don't like the existing ones very much, I might replace them with a complete set of new ones from my stash of vintage buttons collected over the years.

And so this post has once again come to an end ...

But oh my fur and whiskers, how could you forget to mention me?

Oops, I'm sorry Bess, I'm putting this right immediately by adding this lovely photo of you for all your fans in blogland!

I'll be off work for a week, an unheard of luxury which is making me feel all giddy. 

There might still be a post from me before we go away for a couple of days next week, but if not, I'll see you on the other side! 

Please do not forget to stay safe, my dears!


  1. These are some really cool and colorful dress collection. I am loving it the way you are comparing it with flowers.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Lots of Love:Mariann Yip

  2. I was about to riot when I saw the picture of Bess, phew! You can't just put "fur and whiskers" in the title and leave out Her Majesty Queen Bess! ;-P

    Your purple-based dress is swoon-worthy, Ann, and I love the bold oranges with the second dress. I had to go back and look at the next outfit again, as I was completely smitten with your new haircut, and was examining it carefully. I'd already mentally noted that you had a wonderful Roaring 20s vibe going on with your bobbed hair, so I nearly squealed with glee when I saw you in your magnificent culottes! I LOVE that silhouette on you - it's not your usual "fit-and-flare" proportions, but it really does suit you. You've mentioned before that you don't have a lot of maxi skirts, but I really think that longer length is wonderful. Thinking of your comment on Nancy's blog about the appearance of our legs as we age, I wonder if you might be introducing more wide-legged trousers or maxis into your wardrobe. I'm covered in a varicose veins, scars, bruises and refer to my veins as the Nile (on the right) and the Amazon (on the left) - so you are not the only one! :)

    Your garden is gorgeous, so full of Colour Therapy! Your new purchases are fun - looking forward to seeing how you style them.

    Have a lovely evening, my dear friend! Big virtual hugs to you and Ms. Bess.

    1. Thank you Sheila! I used to have bobbed hair for years until I had it cut short in a moment of madness about twenty years ago. So glad the pandemic has given me the incentive to grow it again. I remember wearing culottes in the late eighties, with a 1980s does 1930s style blouse, and this outfit is very reminiscent of that one! Oh, and I have varicose veins too. Maxi skirts and wide legged trousers to the rescue! xxx

  3. Those pants are beautiful on you! they really look like a maxi which you know I love! :) Nice to see your good thrifting luck too.

    I think that first dress is my favourite outfit in the post - purple is petty on you - but the beautiful culottes are a close second!

    Hope you are having a nice weekend :)

    Away From The Blue

    1. Thank you Mica! I never thought of showing that it were palazzos rather than a maxi skirt. Silly me! xxx

  4. I'm glad I'm not the only one who wonders where the time goes Ann. I love the pink maxi on you and I hope you have a lovely week off. You can guarantee that the time will go by even quicker! xx

    1. Thank you Laurie and indeed, those days whizzed by at full speed, unfortunately! xxx

  5. Lately, I've had this feeling of time just flying by as well. Sometimes time really flies!
    You look so lovely in that lavender dress. The purple necklace is gorgeous as well (and I love the floral brooch). The charity shopped belt is a fab pairing with that dress.

    You look spectacular in the dark blue dress with red and white accents. That pattern makes me think of cotton, you know with the round shapes. I think that's how cotton looks like. The red accents with this dress are wonderful.

    The pink dress with statement collar is so fabulous. I love how you paired it with a green cardigan. Finally I love those palazzo pants on you. They look great paired with that blouse. A lot of great outfits in this post, I like them all. Your hair also looks great...and thanks for that cute photo of Bess. Doesn't she have such beautiful green eyes? It looks like she's thriving this summer.

    1. Thank you so much, Ivana! They say time seems to go by faster the older one gets and I can vouch for the fact that it is true! I agree on Bess having beautiful green eyes, and yes, she has really come into her own here with us! xxx

  6. Thank goodness you weren't affected by those terrible floods!
    I love your new haircut and those culottes look phenomenal, I agree with Sheila, that silhoutte looks so good on you although your trademark midi dresses in zingy colours are always a joy!
    I feel the opposite to you, for the last couple of weeks I've been a day aghead of myself, I seem to have acquired an extra 24 hours somewhere - shall I send it your way?
    Thanks for our regular Bess fix! xxx

    1. Thank you Vix! If I have to give a score to that outfit it would definitely get an A+, I felt absolutely fabulous wearing it. Oh please, do send me some of your surplus hours! They'd be most welcome! xxx

  7. Your new haircut is fabulous!
    Love all of your outfits but the culottes are a great look. Enjoy your break. Carole

  8. Fantastic charity shop finds! I really like how you have teamed red shoes with your lilac outfit. I tend to think red shoes work well with anything! The French bob looks very chic. I too favour a shorter fringe. I do go back and forth between slightly grown out and short and blunt, but I always feel more “done” with a shorter fringe. I think it helps frame the face. I love how you are in sync with your wonderfully colourful garden. The little dog brooch is cute and Bess the cat is adorable! X

    1. Thank you Claire! Agree to the red shoes :-) I used to have a French bob many years ago, and although I've regretted having it cut short, it was the pandemic which gave me the incentive to grow it again. I've always loved having a shorter fringe ... xxx

  9. I was so worried about you when I heard about the awful floods! So glad you are ok. I love your new purchases. The Palazzo pants are very much my shape of trousers!
    The garden flora is so beautiful! I have high hopes for your Phlox!
    Today, finally, my first Cosmos flower bloomed! My mum gave me a pack of organic Cosmos seeds for Christmas and I'm so excited to see them flower!
    Bess is a beauty!

    1. Thank you Kezzie! I find myself drawn to palazzo and wide legged trousers lately. I've bought a wide legged jumpsuit as well, but it's very summery, and we haven't exactly had much of a Summer yet ... xxx

  10. colours and flowers everwhere @ dove cottage!
    palazzo pants look very cool - especially in that bright pink.
    every morning a new flower - or two ;-D - has opened the petals....... summer is so wonderful. i just sit and enjoy the buzzing bees, the sound of the crickets and the clouds of butteflies in the garden.
    between all the chores and projects that want get finished ;-D
    cuddles to bess and hugsies to you! xxxx

    1. Thank you Beate! I love sitting and enjoying the sights, sounds and scents of nature too. Unfortunately that scene is often spoiled by noisy neighbours here. Sending cuddles to Lissy and hugsies right back to you :-) xxx

  11. What a profoundly heartbreaking tragedy to befall Belgium. I'm so sorry for the loss and challenges that Mother Nature has wrought on that corner of the world this summer.

    On a more upbeat note, your ensembles are (as always, my dear friend) marvellous. I especially love the deep purple beaded necklace paired with the gorgeous lilac shades of that dress. Really, really terrific styling.

    Wishing you continued safety and the hope of a wonderful August ahead.

    Autumn Zenith 🧡 Witchcrafted Life

    1. Thank you Autumn! I do agree on the lilac dress, it's such a flattering colour isn't it? I usually wear lilac eye shadow as well! xxx

  12. Oh so amazing this lilac and purple. You look gorgeous Ann, like a flower in your garden. 😊🌸
    I wish you a nice week off, with a very huge hug Tina

  13. That flood was so horrible, both in Belgium and in Germany. Absolutely horrible. I was so shocked that that happened.
    It always feels so great after a new colour and hair cut doesn't it. Love those culottes, especially with the denim jacket. I wish you a wonderful week, keeping my fingers crossed that you will have some sunny weather. We are actually talking about going to the UK in September. I hope we can go, I can barely watch BBC without feeling so homesick.

    1. Thank you Nancy! I was very shocked too, and it will take years to rebuild everything. So many people homeless, but they're the ones lucky enough to still be alive!
      I do have the same and can barely watch BBC without getting tears in my eyes! I'm keeping my fingers crossed that you can go in September! xxx

  14. There have been many grey and wet days this summer. However, I'm still in a good mood. Why I do not know. Must be the cat on my lap, the books in my shelves, the sun in my heart. It's not the clothes, becaus my sweater is black and not at all flowery as your clothes are.



    1. I should take a leaf out of your book, Regula ... xxx

  15. Dear Anne, I'm also missing my slow lifestyle now that I'm at work full time. Miss having the time to sew, paint, walk and Read. How did I do all these things in the past?
    Love the brightening lilacs in your first outfit, so beautiful colours!, and you're really looking fab, no sign of tireness!. I've felt exhausted for some days after my second jab, even worried Mr.A., but got well soon.
    Love your King Louie dress, such a stunning print and perfect turquoise cardi!. A favourite colour combo!
    Also love your floral dress with green accessories, a match made in heaven and totally joyful colour combo even under an umbrella!.
    The new palazzo trousers are really fabulous and love the flapper vibes you created, I'm a huge fan of William Morris prints. You Rock It!
    Lovely finds, lots of colour and prints!

    1. I've been wondering the same, Monica, and I'm even missing last year's lockdown days - to a degree, obviously!
      I'm sorry to hear you've felt exhausted after your second jab, and I'm so glad it has passed.
      I'm a big fan of all things William Morris too! xxx

  16. Fabulous outfits, Ann, and the new hairdo is lovely. I love a short fringe; it can make a big difference to a hair style. Loved the lilac dress and the beautiful accessories with it. The new culottes are brilliant and yes, the William Morris blouse is perfect with it. I hope you are feeling more yourself and that the tiredness and meh feeling was down to the jab and gone now.

    Great finds in the charity shops; the ethnic print skirt is rather gorgeous as is the pretty blue floral one. You are very good to change the ALL the buttons on your new blouse. I'm sorry to say I would probably have left it behind if it meant I had to sew something!

    Bess is getting prettier and prettier...

    1. Thank you Vronni! The meh feeling was gone after a day or so, so I'm convinced it was due to the jab.
      I often replace all the buttons on a garment if they're the only thing I don't like about it. Sometimes it takes me a while to get to it, though ;-) xxx

  17. I love the vintage blouse and the floral print on that skirt is so cute! Your new haircut looks great!

  18. Just stopping by to wish you a lovely day!

  19. I'm very behind on my blog reading! So fab outfits here as ever and those culottes are so you.

    1. Thank you Gisela, it is so easy to fall behind with blog reading, isn't it? No problem, though, I'm happy with every comment I get :-) xxx