Monday, December 8, 2014

J Crew drought is over

J Crew was a bit of an addiction for me when they first started shipping O/S in around 2011. Before they had an international site, I'd trawl through their items with great excitement, and almost always found a basketful of items I wanted. I longed whistfully for the day that they'd ship to Australia!

Once they started shipping to Aus, I bought a lot of items, most of which I still wear regularly for work: pencil skirts, mainly, plus the odd cardigan and sweater.

However, over the past 12 months I've almost stopped looking at the site. The designs didn't really appeal and the fabrics were more and more meh.
Beautiful, classic-with-a-twist rich colours had been replaced by dull, droopy overly try-hard fashion.

Apart from boys' Stanton shorts and one skirt, I don't think I've bought anything from there for almost a year.

Until last week.

Matellasse skirt - $59 after a big % discount. It's navy cotton and looks as if it will be flattering with its slighly A-lined yet hip-fitting cut.

I won't be needing this for at least 6 months, but at $104 with extra discounts, it seemed churlish not to order it as a winter staple. 

This was $49 after discounts and will (I hope) be a useful addition to my skirt and top work uniform.
Although it's poly, reviews from Gigi and others suggest it's a decent poly and not too flimsy.

All of the above should arrive within the next couple of days, so I'll try to post some pics and reviews once they do.

Any experience with the above items?
Have you gone cold turkey on J Crew or are you still a fan?

Friday, December 5, 2014

The roof is going on!

There has been a flurry of activity on site this past week.
Finally, the correct windows have arrived.
Below you can see the view from the old part of the house through to the back. The top windows are in, and the concertina doors will be installed next week.

Here's a view from the side of the back of the house, with builders in situ:

The most exciting thing, though, is the fact that the roof is partially on, and the place should be watertight by mid next week!

We're getting really excited about its completion. I doubt it will be this year, but the end is in sight.....(or at least we hope it is!)

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

21 Years!

On Tuesday, J and I celebrated our 21st wedding anniversary.

It sounds like such a long time!
In some ways, 21 years is a lifetime ago in terms of experience and maturity. I feel as if I am exactly the same and yet totally different.

Some parts of the last 21 years are totally blurred in my memory, as if they happened too long ago to remember, and yet others are clear as if they happened yesterday. It's been a wonderful 21 years and I am so grateful to have such a fantastic partner.

J bought me a book written by a friend of a friend. I bought him a very small oil on canvas painted by an artist friend of ours.

J looking happy. Can you believe he's 49?

My skirt arrived and I love it. 

That's about all, really.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Another post about skirts

What's your panacea when the blahs hit?
A large G&T perhaps, or a hit of sugar?
Or maybe you prefer something more spiritual?

I'm a shallow beast. I find online shopping very soothing when life is causing me stress.

While Dani has been buying gold elephants, I've been indulging my inner gypsy:

I spotted this online (oh the dangers of surfing high-end clothing sites).
It's cotton and not too full, and yet not a pencil skirt. I have reached peak pencil skirt, so no need for another one. Or at least for now.

I nipped into Max Mara in the city to see if they had it in store and to try it on to see.
I like it. I reckon it will work well for casual summer days, and I can spice it up at night with a posh top and heels. It's hitting 35 degrees C this week, so cool and airy is the order of the day.

Guess how much it was in the store?

$460. Yes. Double the price of Matches.

I honestly have no idea how prices work these days. It seems that any store in Australia automatically charges at least 50% more than the O/S equivalent.

So, despite wanting to support local retailers, I did the only sensible thing and ordered it online.

More pics when it arrives. 

What's your cure for blahness?

Monday, November 17, 2014

Some good, some bad

November has been a bit of a mixed bag so far.
On the good front, the reno is coming along, albeit slowly:

The roof structure is going up and there is some indication that it might one day be finished.

Bad stuff: Joe came off his bike last Tuesday and broke his rib and injured his shoulder. On the bright side, it's very good that he wasn't more seriously injured.
He's taking strong painkillers, which is just about all that can be done.

More good: It was Joe's birthday celebration this past weekend, so despite the pain and discomfort, he managed to enjoy himself at a huge birthday lunch.
I frocked up in my new Gary Bigeni drapey skirt arrangement and a black top:

Excuse the strange slightly glazed expression on my face. I think the stress of this year has finally got me!

At the birthday feast we had this:

It was a joint birthday celebration for another friend, so we booked a room in the Four in Hand Pub in Paddington. The food was utterly amazing and the wines weren't bad either!

To end on a good note, here's a picture of the new roof structure from D's bedroom window.
We are hoping that we might be able to move back in one day....

How are you? are you as sick of 2014 as I am or has this year been kinder to you?

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Bargain Boden skirt

My no clothes buying thing has been going fairly well - I've managed to stop looking at a lot of sites that encourage spending, and have only bought a couple of new items since our Austerity Programme began in August.
But, the other day I broke my vows and clicked on an email from Boden (British clothing company).
The email promised huge savings (70% off! Free shipping!)
How could I ignore it? 
There weren't many things that caught my eye, but then I spotted this skirt:

I'd sort of thought about buying it earlier in the year, as I'm a bit of a stripe obsessive.
At that point, Boden didn't have prices in Aus $ and the shipping was a bit steep, so I ignored it.
Now, however, it was reduced to $44 with FREE shipping and returns! Oh Joy! How on earth could I ignore it, especially as it comes in petite sizes too!

I ordered the 6P, and hey presto! it arrived 4 days later.

it's a winner!
It's cotton with a poly lining (Dani would cringe) - the waist band has a grosgrain ribbon detail, and the quality seems good.
The fit is fairly good - it's a touch baggy around the waist, but that could be fixed by my tailor.
The length is perfect for my 5'2" stature.

A big thumbs up for the stripes matching at the seams. I loathe mis-matching seams!

Worn with J Crew cotton knit and APC sandals

I do love a surprise bargain!

How about you? Are you a fan of Boden? Any bargains recently?

Sunday, October 26, 2014

New sandals

I've been rather good at not shopping since our renovations started, but I did lay-buy these APC sandals a couple of months ago.
Sensible, comfortable and possibly not very glamourous:

I love them. I walk lots every day, so they're perfect for trecking across campus and shlepping around at the weekend. Don't get me wrong, I love a pair of glamourous heels too, but they're really not good for my everyday life.

Sensible low wedge!!
There's been bugger all going on at our house, but more aqua coloured wood has appeared. We've sent the builder a message to remind him that we need to move back in on 21st December (thanks for the advice, Heidi!)

Fingers crossed that they'll do some work this week. It's steamy hot here,  31 degrees C, so let's hope it's not the wrong weather for building.

How are you?
Do you prefer glamour or comfort for summer sandals?