Sunday, May 4, 2014

A few sweater reviews

While those of you in the Northern Hemisphere are thinking of warmer weather and light clothes, those of us Down South are heading into winter.
Sydney has just had a bloody cold weekend, in fact it's the coldest weekend since July 2013! Yesterday there was an icy wind and temps dropped to 10 degrees C during the day! Shockingly cold for these parts!

Happily, my John Smedley sweater order arrived in time for the cold snap.
John Smedley is an old British company who have been making sweaters since 1784. The sweaters aren't particularly cutting edge or fashiony, but they are very well made (in the UK!) and the ones I own have lasted a long time.
JS sweaters are very expensive in Australia, and indeed in the UK, but considering the quality, they're worth the splurge. I was lucky enough to get mine in the 70% off sale - one of the joys of living in the Southern Hemisphere is being able to buy clothes on sale for the current season!
Compared to J Crew, they are in a totally different league!

I ordered two styles:


Cashmere and merino cable knit.
I love this! It's rather oversized on me (I got size S, which is the smallest this style comes in ) but I like the slouchy style for winter. It works well with jeans or leggings. It'w warm and light, too.


The other style is a merino wool turtle neck in a dark charcoal.
This is size xs, and it fits perfectly. I'll wear it with skirts and trousers


Close-up details:


Finally, a rather bizarre shot of me wearing a beautiful new scarf sent to me from my gorgeous friend C, who is living in Bali.


If you're in the market for new knitwear and fancy giving John Smedley a try, they currently have 20% off all orders 'til 7th May. Code is SPJS20.

How are you? Any weekend fun?

29 comments:

  1. Oh I do like them both! You look fab in them. I can't believe how quickly the weather has turned. I've gone from a sun dress on Monday, to double layers of wool, cord jeans and my knee high boots on Friday. I had a splurge in the Brora January sale, so don't need any more knitwear... although I'm tempted to sneak a look. I've avoided the Cable Melbourne site for that reason too. xx

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    1. It's crazy, isn't it? I wore sandals last week... this week I'm wearing Uggs in the house!
      I was looking at Cable Melbourne - gorgeous things, but then the Smedley sale email landed in my inbox and so now I'm all sorted for this year.
      JS Sea Island cotton knits are divine, Heidi, so even if you're sorted now, it's worth having a peak in July when the summer sale is on!!

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    2. thanks for the tip, I'll definitely have a look. Am on a shopping ban, as I'm trying to buy furniture (and really, I don't need anything...). The benefit of shopping in the January sales is I'm all sorted.

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  2. Too funny! When it hits 10 in Canada, people bring out the sandals! Love both sweaters!

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    1. Wendy, you Canadians are made of much stronger stuff that I!! 10 degrees for me means thermals, boots and coat!
      I’m such a wuss!

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  3. Hello Ruth,

    The John Smedley jumpers look very good on you. We can confirm that they are always beautifully made and the quality of the fabrics is without exception fabulous. These are jumpers which become one's best friends and really do last for a very long time. In our opinion, they are well worth the money.

    The Seasonal differences between the hemispheres is fascinating and until recently when we ventured to South America we never really considered how it would be to have Christmas lunch on the beach.......now we know! We would not trade Spring for your winter just now though!

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    1. Dear Jane and Lance, I’m very pleased with my John Smedley purchases. When I first moved to Australia from the N Hemisphere I found it quite mad to be on the beach in December and January, not to mention my birthday falling in the hottest month of the year instead of the most dreary (February). In general, I love the climate here; it suits me so much better than the perpetual damp and grey skies of the UK.
      Autumn here in Sydney is actually rather splendid, unless there’s a cold snap or rain. It’s usually around 12 degrees overnight and about 22 degrees during the middle of the day.

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  4. Gorgeous jumpers, I had forgotten all about John Smedley, I used to dream of owning his label back in the late 80's/90's.

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    1. Tabs, I highly recommend checking out JS if and when you need new knitwear. I have a whole heap of J Crew Jackie cardigans that I’m planning to slowly (very slowly) replace with JS Sea Island cotton ones. The J Crew just aren’t long term keepers, and I want my clothes to last a long time now I’m in my middle years!

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  5. Both sweater are georgious on you!

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    1. Hi Ina, thanks! Loving your reviews!

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  6. I love both of them on you, Ruth! Now that I live where it gets very cold, this is a line I will definitely be looking in to. I checked out their website, and it looks as if they do deliver to the U.S., so I can see a package (or two) coming my way from them in the future.

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    1. P.S. I've changed the name of my blog from Fabulous Florida Mommy to All Things Simplified. Would it be possible for you to change the old name in the bloglist on your sidebar to the new one?

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    2. HI Melissa, thanks for visiting. They do indeed ship internationally, and the price is fairly reasonable.
      I'll certainly sort out your blog name on my sidebar once I have a moment and work out how to do it. I'm surprised it doesn't automatically update!?

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  7. I haven't bought from John Smedley but will look into it on my next rounds of winter clothes shopping (I'm a Uniqlo girl). I love the sweater and the turtle neck. My kind of fit and colours. Really really suits you :) No bank holiday weekend fun for me coz I'm poorly. Annoying coz we were thinking of driving down Brighton for a meal coz it's the Mr.'s birthday. Maybe next week. Have a good week Ruth :)

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    1. Hello C&TT!
      Uniqlo has just opened up in Australia, but I’ve had slightly bad luck with their knitwear… Both the merino knits I bought in the past had holes and lost their shape very quickly, then a V neck knit shrunk drastically, despite me washing it by hand in cold water. I’m a bit loathe to buy them again, although they are very reasonably priced.
      Sorry to hear you’ve been ill - such a pain when it’s a long weekend. Hope you feel better and make it down to Brighton soon

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  8. I have heard of John Smedley but never bought from them before. The cable knit turtleneck is fabulous!! What Wendy said above is so true - it was 12C in Toronto today, and people were walking around in short-sleeved shirts!

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    1. Hi Louise, I’m sure you have lovely warm sweaters in Canada, but JS are certainly worth trying if you’re in the market for a sweater you’ll keep for a long time.
      Short sleeves in 12 degrees? Utter madness!

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  9. I love big sweaters and bought a bunch from Blarney Woollen Mills this past season that sadly didn't get used because it was so warm here. Will have to check John Smedley, love the sweaters on you!

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    1. Hello Tiffany Rose, I somehow doubt you'd need the really warm ones in your climate, but the Sea Island cotton ones are divine. I think xoxo was planning to order some... speaking of xoxo, her blog seems to have gone. Does anyone know why? I hope she's OK?

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    2. You'd be surprised we do get down to the 30s F at times and I get easily cold. It was unusually warm this year, I hope it's not a permanent change. I noticed that about xoxo too and wondered the same, I hope it's just a temporary thing ...

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    3. Brrr! That's -1!!!
      I am a bit concerned that her blog is gone.... I don't have her email either. I hope all's well with her.

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  10. They are very nice and glad you got such bargains. The Hattatts ringing endorsement indicates they are wise investments. You made out like a bandit!

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    1. Thanks GSL. Is 'nice' a euphemism for not really to your liking? ;-)

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    2. Ruth, my euphemisms have a little more bite.

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    3. Glad to hear it! Some how I suspected that they might...

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  11. I love both of these on you Ruth. I could see myself curling up with a good book on a winter's day in that first one. Love that Bali scarf too. What a nice friend!

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    1. Thanks Shopping Celle. I've been wearing the brown one non-stop at home; our house is very chilly - no central heating in Sydney!

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  12. You seem totally at one with the cosmic universe in that last shot which is as it should be in a scarf so stellar and gorgeous. Also love your nubby sweater and the sleek one. Sadly I can't do the turtles anymore as they emphasise the dreaded neck. Truth be told we always get use out of light sweater and cardies here, the weather in the Bay Area turns on a dime (and other cliches)

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