Sensational Baby Boomers

Sunday, 11 November 2018

AUTUMN WARDROBE ADDITIONS


You already know about Anne C's obsession with pink, so here she is again wearing head-to-toe pale pink, which was perfect for this unseasonably warm Autumn day. Given that she is very short (5'2") and curvy, she tries to wear one shade rather than cutting her in half with different colours, which just makes her look shorter and wider (she says!)


She is showing off her new pale pink poncho, bought from one of her new favourite online retailers, Mandy's Heaven, which she discovered on Instagram earlier this year - and this is her sixth piece from bought her boutique (actually strictly speaking it is the fourth piece she has bought since Mandy very kindly gifted her and Anne H a gorgeous silk top and a beautiful necklace each here and here). But since she absolutely loved the clothes it's no hardship to buy more!


This fabulous poncho is a recent buy from Mandy's but no longer on the website, though they often restock if you check back later. She has teamed with perfectly matching pale pink jeggings and pale pink suede bootees, both from Primark earlier this year. The necklace is from iizzy boutique in Bury, while the pearl earrings are several years old.


Anne H was anticipating a wild drop in temperature at the time of our shoot, and in preparation went on the search for a lovely warm scarf. First stop COS and success, with the find of this lovely wool cashmere check scarf which will go with a multitude of coat colours as it incorporates navy, red and brown.  Not the cheapest of items at £59 but it is certainly something she will wear over and over.


All the other elements of this outfit were already in her wardrobe so she is really being very thrifty.  The camel coat was purchased in the  Massimo Dutti sale during our trip to Bruges earlier this year, and she really likes this length for day to day wear.  They have a very similar coat in the current collection and she particularly loves the seaming detailing on this one and the longer line Crombie styling. They haven't given it the most imaginative name - solid coloured wool coat, but hey ho it does what it says on the packet and for £229, it is reasonably priced for a coat with 75% wool content.


She has teamed with another sale find, these jeans from Ted Baker and some snazzy red boots from TopShop.  They are doing a similar pair this year in a lovely red croc finish called Houston for £59.

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Friday, 2 November 2018

LIVING WITH HAIR LOSS



Our normal posts are usually very positive - the clothes we like to wear and the places we like to visit.  But at 60+ we've both had our ups and downs over the years, though we don't often dwell on these.


This week I'm going to talk about something which is less than positive and which I have only just decided to share.  The full story, which I don't propose to go into huge detail now, can be found on Sixty and Me here.


I have Lichen Planus Pilaris - in English that means I have a fairly rare form of alopecia and am pretty much bald. My hair never grow back as the stem cells and follicles have been completely destroyed.  For the past five years I have worn a "topper" which for those not familiar, is like a wig but clips on to what hair remains, so it's perfect if you have thinning hair, or if like me, you have a large bald patch.  I absolutely love my new topper and will be tagging it in Instagram posts when I wear it - which will probably be permanently now.


I decided to write about my problem because a few people - who did not necessarily know about my own alopecia - have mentioned that their hair is either receding or going very thin, something which is not uncommon post-menopause.  While not everyone will go as bald as I have, perhaps it will be reassuring to know that we are not alone.

I am also not writing about this to elicit sympathy, but rather to try and help others who have be going through the same thing.  My condition is not life-threatening, but has certainly been life-changing.  And I do understand that worse things can happen, for which I am obviously very grateful.

I was approached by the lovely people at Uniwigs in the USA to write a piece about wearing a topper, (see photo above) so I have gone one better and have produced my own video or vlog - (Oh dear I sound awful on tape!) which you can see below. The topper I am wearing is an Amber 12" silk top real hair topper  in G4 medium brunette, which is virgin hair and fabulous quality, and because it is real hair, it means I can style it using straighteners, curlers and even a hair dryer, though on a low heat.

Uniwigs are available online, and they have a large selection of toppers and wigs to suit most requirements, so they are well worth a look. They are great if your hair is thin, receding, or if you have bald patches, and they are really easy to wear.

Having worn synthetic toppers for a few years, I can tell you that they do not last more than 4-6 months before they go crunchy at the ends, since the heat from the sun or even from the cooker/oven destroys acrylic hair. I have got around this by wearing my hair up, and have continued dyeing my remaining hair to match the colour of the topper.


Of course most of us of a certain age will have permed, dyed, straightened and generally abused their hair over the years. I have been a blonde and a red-head with various shades of deep purple in between, as well as my natural brunette, but it is safe to say that not everyone who has done the same as I have loses their hair.  Maybe I was predisposed to being follically-challenged since I never had luscious locks anyway.  In fact here are a few old photographs of me with various hair-styles (taken during the late 70s and early 80s), some of  which frankly look ridiculous now.....


Definitely permed in these two and then blow dried!

Permed again but left looking like a shaggy dog!


On to the blonde look now - initially to cover up the grey


And just so the other Anne isn't left out this week - here's a picture of both of us taken circa 1996! She still to this day has beautifully thick hair which she hasn't coloured or permed for years.



I started with a small bald patch when I was 60 - five years ago - and despite a cocktail of different drugs with nasty side-effects, nothing has stopped my hair falling out, so I decided not to continue with treatment.  I have previously bought my wigs and toppers from the helpful and sympathetic ladies at Betty Brown in York, who supply wigs for the NHS, and who have given me lots of practical advice and even trimmed the beautiful Uniwig sent to me from the USA. Uniwigs also have useful advice about hair loss here.

The truth is I now have to live with the fact that I will be wearing wigs, topper and hair-pieces for the rest of my life. So expect to see me changing my "hair" in the coming years, as often as changing my clothes!
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Friday, 26 October 2018

AUTUMN KNITWEAR





Oh yes, it is that time of year when knitwear comes out of storage and thoughts of proper winter wear comes to the fore.  An ideal time to augment your existing wardrobe with some carefully chosen new pieces.



That's what I tell myself at least.  So I started with this lovely Oyster, silvery grey jumper from John Lewis with drop back.  The cowl neck looks great under a jacket and it is not too heavy a knit so a lighter jacket would work as well as a winter coat.  The blue suede boots are from & Other Stories and feature a pointed toe with stack block heel - I really love their current collection of clothes and footwear and thoroughly recommend a look see.



I never like to give up on Marks & Spencer and regularly go in to see if their clothing range has anything that appeals.  Sadly most of the time I leave frustrated and more than disappointed that they seem to have lost their way.  So imagine how pleased I was when I found this great cashmere piece in their Autograph collection.  I really love this tunic styling as I think it is the most flattering shape and this cashmere is really soft.  It is also available in a grey which is very tempting.


The exciting pointed toe ankle boots are from a previous season and are stolen from my daughter - just don't tell her.  They were from TopShop and feature a back zip and snazzy shaped block heel.  Sadly they don't stock this one any more but do have a fabulous croc-effect red book for just £59 called The Houston.


Another M&S find here with this merino wool simple style V Neck jumper - yes, I am trying to embrace colour, although still not 100% convinced.



It is team with some Marella trousers that I bought in the sale last year.  They have a high waist and fluid shape that makes them so easy to dress up or down.  I particularly like theirs and MaxMara's tailored trousers as they are really long with unfinished hems that you can  have tailored to fit exactly.



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Friday, 19 October 2018

AUTUMN WARDROBE ADDITIONS



I always like to wear one colour if I can - I read years ago that it makes you look slimmer rather than have two colours which cut you in half.  My daughter disagrees with this one though - she told me I had over-done the red.  But if you like something, I say, wear it!


I may look a bit like Mother Christmas, but hey, I love red and I love Christmas!

The sweater was a recent buy from an online store which is fast becoming one of my favourites, and which I learned about through Instagram when the lovely Mandy gifted us a beautiful silk top each.  I have gone on to buy a few pieces from her store Mandy's Fashion Heaven, and love her casual fluid looks.  This fabulous sweater is available in several lovely bright shades (oh no!!) so I may have to buy others! It is currently not on her website, but one thing to note is that her site is regularly updated as she gets in new stock, so I live in hope that it will soon be back.


I have teamed it with red skinny jeans which I bought in Tesco (one loaf of bread and a pair of jeans please!...) I can buy inexpensive jeans because I am quite short, so I don't have to worry too much about the length.  The only thing I tend to avoid with cheaper jeans is low rise pants, which I hate, but unfortunately I have accidentally managed to buy those in the past.

The fabulous OTT mules were a recent purchase on holiday in Santorini.  I just love anything sparkly, so these fit the bill perfectly.  I have topped off the outfit with a leopard print scarf edged in red which is one of my favourites and is an old one from Warehouse, but Dune has a similar one on sale here.


I am sticking with the red skinnies and mules in the next shot, but I have teamed this outfit with a navy blue and white striped T shirt, bought in M&S sale at the end of the summer, so no longer in stock, but a similar one without the red piping is still available here.  Have you noticed how T shirts have been getting shorter?  I wanted a longer length one with full sleeves to wear for yoga since your work out on a cold floor and with winter drawing ever closer, I will be layering up!  Besides, if you have a larger bottom and a bit of a tum, I feel more comfortable with a longer shirt.

The gold watch is actually a Fitbit - a birthday gift from my daughter.  I am desperately trying to get my steps up, but because of a long-standing injury, I am struggling to make 10,000 steps (unlike the other Anne who regularly does way more than that a day!)

The garnet earrings are ones I have had for years.





You either love this next outfit or you'll hate it!  Actually I love it since it's a bit funky, and the colour is lovely.

The dress is again from Mandy's Fashion Heaven, in a pinky/mauve shade and is really comfy to wear.  I'm wearing it with white cotton leggings from Julien Macdonald, which were another summer sale buy, so again now sold out, but you could just as easily wear with shoes or boots.



The necklace is another one from Mandy ( seen here in black) - who also stocks a great range of accessories - indeed her new handbag range is gorgeous.  The shoes are a recent buy from River Island - not sure if you can tell but they have a sparkly platform, and I do love diamante! However the current stock shows the same design without the sparkle here. What a shame that these have disappeared from the website so soon - but you might still find them in store somewhere.


The weather is turning distinctly chilly now, so next week the other Anne will be showcasing her new Autumn knitwear!


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Friday, 12 October 2018

TROPEA 2018


Tropea in Calabria, Southern Italy is somewhere I visit at least twice a year so will be a familiar location to our blog readers.  It has featured on numerous occasions and here is a link to a few of those posts.  

This trip was a bit different though as I got to introduce my two nieces to this fabulous place, and there really is nothing to re-kindle your love of a place more than taking people round for their first time.  It's charms were not lost on them and they just loved our long weekend there.  


Highly appropriate sign






View of the Santa Maria dell'Isola 



Lizzy came along too so we had a marvellous girly trip with much laughter, good food and the odd tipple.  Lizzy has featured on her blog too, link here.


And of course we were all there to catch up with my brother-in-law, Luigi and his sweet dog Polly (short for Cipolla which is Italian for Onion - so called because her nose peels).  He was in fine form and it's hard to comprehend that he is 92 this December - you just would not know it.


We stayed at one of our favourite B&B's called Residenza Il Barone, this is at least my fifth stay there. The picture below is taken on the breakfast terrace and there really is no better place to be on a bright morning with views of the rooftops and the sea.


My wardrobe was very much a case of old favourites thrown into a carry on case, you know the usual suspects that only come out when you go away.  Including this ancient top from M&S and cotton trousers that I must have purchased at least five years ago.  No-one can accuse me of not being sustainable.  I have just packed away all my summer pieces and some go back a long long way - I am almost sentimental about them!






Of course I got much derision from the girls when I took them to visit my very favourite door in all Tropea.  I know, odd to have a door as a highlight, but you must agree it is very impressive.


And an ideal place to pose for a shot.


We enjoyed some great cocktails at Max's bar and fully indulged in the marvellous food of southern Italy from fresh fish to the home made Fileja pasta with our favourite Nduja - a spicy pork sausage.


I managed to slip one new top into the suitcase with this batwing sleeve jersey shirt from COS which is one of those pieces that just hangs beautifully with a timeless classic styling.  Not too badly priced either at £55.



We had some amazing weather, were at the beach everyday and enjoying stunning sunsets every evening.  Tropea is really such a pretty place and one I firmly recommend making the effort to visit.



Lizzy and I will be back again next year so watch out for more coverage.


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Friday, 5 October 2018

HONEY WE'RE HOME!


After a fabulous summer in the UK, along with our respective holidays in the sun - not that we actually needed to go abroad this year, for once the weather in England has rivalled the continent - we are now back to normal following a bit of a blogging break.

Pretty much as we have done for the past 18 years or so, I headed off to Santorini with my long-suffering hubby, bringing along our daughter and her boyfriend, staying at the small family hotel where we have holidayed every year, and for which we now feel blessed to almost be part of the family.  We were invited to join family meals, where we chatted as best as we could since we don't speak much more than the odd word of Greek, but we managed with a little help from Google Translate when we got stuck!

The other Anne jetted off to her happy place in Tropea, Italy, with her family and she will be writing soon be letting you know about her travels too.

Since I have written a few times about Santorini here and here, I thought I would just show you some fabulous backdrops to my holiday wardrobe - most of which you will probably have seen before, but which tend to come out every year when the sun shines.



The fabulous black and gold kaftan is from Mandy's Heaven, a stylish brand we discovered on Instagram. As this was summer stock it is no longer available ( but I've just had to order something from the new autumn collection). The lovely Mandy was kind enough to send each of us a silk top which we featured here and here (I did take mine to Santorini and wore it again, but the photo taken by my hubby was rubbish!)  I loved her range so much I bought this one and have just taken delivery of another parcel, the contents of which I'm sure will be featured soon.  I am wearing with my trusty leggings from Julien Macdonald.  The sequinned beach bag is another old favourite from Next, which I've had for many years.

I have kept jewellery to a minimum as I hate anything clingy and stuck to my skin when the weather is so hot, so I'm wearing rose gold earrings from Simply Devine, and a FitBit which was a birthday gift from my daughter this year.





The all-white outfit, shot against a monastery on the highest point of the island, is a combination of go-to white linen trousers from M&S, and a pretty bardot pleated chiffon top from Zara, which is probably my favourite purchase of the summer.  Obviously they are now selling winter stock, so no longer available. The white diamante sandals were a Santorini purchase from around three years ago.

The lovely Tiffany cat's eye sunglasses were a new purchase from Manchester airport as we left for our last holiday, and the watch is a favourite sparkly Swarovski piece (similar one here).


The hazy back-drop is shot from in front of the monastery and is a view of  the capital Thira to the left and Oia in the far left distance, which form a rim to the volcano just out of view.


The red lace dipped hem top was from a small boutique called Emphasize in Romford, and I have slipped a red cami underneath to keep myself decent.  I have teamed with the same black leggings as before from Julien Macdonald.


Taken from our balcony, the orange kaftan from Matalan has a dual purpose and can be worn over a swimmie for daytime and with another cami for decency, swapped for a night-time look over white leggings, also from Matalan.  The silver sandals were bought on another Greek Island, Thassos, last year, while the white clutch is the insert from a beach bag!


To be clear - you aren't going to see me full length in a bathing costume, but I don't mind sharing this shot taken from a visiting friend's hotel right on the cliff edge in the fabulous Imerovigli.  (What you can't actually see is the costume, which is coral with gold flamingos and was bought in Asda!)

With its stunning views and infinity pool, the vista across the Caldera and volcano was just breath-taking, if a little breezy, as it sits more than 1,000 feet above the sea.


My lovely best friend Anne will also soon be sharing her holiday wardrobe from beautiful Tropea  - as soon as she has unpacked.

And just to let you know that we have already booked to go back to Santorini next year! Yamas!!
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