Sensational Baby Boomers

Friday, 18 May 2018

CHOOSING JEWELLERY TO SUIT YOUR NECKLINE


We were inspired to look at necklines and jewellery this week after seeing a graphic online about what jewellery to wear with each neckline, but having had a play around in our jewellery boxes, I think it's safe to say that you can wear more than one style with each neckline - a lot will depend on the occasion.

Then there's the question of wearing costume jewellery against more classic pearls or gold and silver- and this might depend not just on the event, but also on your budget.

Since both of our mothers are sadly no longer with us, both of us have extensive jewellery collections - much of it inherited from older family members.



Anne C tends to go for statement costume jewellery pieces, and her pearl and turquiose necklace is no exception.  This is a piece from Bizermani, a Greek company, but theeir website translates into English.  She has a favourite shop in Thira, Santorini, which she visits every year on holiday and is building up quite a collection of their pieces.

Sometimes you look at a photograph after it's been taken and realist that something didn't work, and although the necklace looks fine with a classic V neck, the drop pearl and bow earrings don't actually go well with the overall look.  Next time it will be either smaller pearls or turquoise studs with this top and necklace!






Same top - which is a silk wrapover front which Anne has had for years, which she has accessorised with a beautiful glass necklace with matching earrings and bracelet, which she bought from an Asian jeweller whom she mentored when she first set up in business some years ago as part of a Women in Business programme. Unfortunately she is no longer selling jewellery, which is a great shame, as Anne loved her products and has several other items bought from her. The ring was a gift from the other Anne a couple of years ago, and was bought for her in Tropea, Italy.




Anne's black drape neck top is from COS and cries out for statement necklace that matches the sweep of the neckline adding drama to the overall look.  This one is also from Greek jeweller Bizermani and is unusual in that it is part lace, part bead, and sits comfortably on this scoop neckline.


This statement red necklace was bought at a charity event and came from Conwy Pearls.  Anne fell in love with this rather over-the-top piece, but it is a limited edition as all her stunning pieces are handmade (she's just had a look at the website and is now drooling...)

It would work well with a low neckline, but the ivory top from Phase Eight is the perfect foil for the colour and contrasts well. The simple red petal earrings with diamante centres aren't a set but they do complement the necklace.







Another top from COS with a higher crew style neck is ideal for accessorizing with either a short necklace that complements the neckline like this striking purple one that Anne purchased a number of years ago.  It works equally well with a longer necklace like this colourful chunky one that was also purchased in Greece.



This black stone with diamante drops and matching earrings is shown off on a square neckline, with a top from Weekenders - unfortunately no longer in business. This set also came from the previous Asian jeweller.





Finally, this  classic cream silk shirt from Whistles cries out for creamy vintage pearls like these from Anne's mum with their age giving them the most beautiful patina  She has added some small pearl earrings bought in the Far East with bangles and pearl ring from Pandora.

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Friday, 11 May 2018

EARLY SUMMER WARDROBE ADDITIONS


Finally the weather has picked up and we've had some long-overdue brilliant sunshine!  So with summer holidays and sunny days looming, I have done a little seasonal shopping ready for summer (and I hasten to add, I have actually sold quite a few previously-loved items on eBay to make some room!)


I absolutely love this Galerie Saint Gil white jacket which I bought on a recent trip to New York.  The shop was opposite our hotel on the corner of E50th Street and Lexington Avenue, and I had told my daughter every day I wanted to pop in and look round, and literally the car was waiting at the hotel entrance when I finally went in and saw this fab jacket. They had some gorgeous clothes but sadly I didn't have time for a proper look - probably just as well because it saved me maxing my credit card!

Although unlined, it is extremely stylish, with an asymmetric front, dipped hem, feature sleeves and contrasting button.


I was also delighted to see that it had been drastically reduced - originally retailing at more than $800 though to be honest I don't think it was worth that since it is unlined. However, I love the style and have teamed it with smart black trousers from Marks & Spencer for a mono look.  If I wear it for a day out I would probably add a bright scarf and matching handbag to give a pop of colour and lighten up the mono palette.



For this photoshoot, I am wearing my studded Office boots - unfortunately bought a couple of years ago, and accessorised with large gold-tone earrings and watch from Olivia Burton (bought on the flight home!)





The summer top (below) looks yellow in the photo, but is more of an acidyellow/lime green with a gold sequin feature neckline from Julien Macdonald at Debenhams.  I like the double layer - a fitted bodice with a chiffon overlay as the latter covers up any lumps and bumps - of which I have many! It is currently in the sale reduced to £31.20, but only available in a size 8.


This is one outfit which will definitely be going to Greece with me for two visits this summer.  I have teamed with white jeans, but often take white leggings with me on holiday as they are lighter when the weather is scorching.

The dainty butterfly earrings are perfect for summer, but I have had them for so long I can't remember where they came from.





This pink outfit is a bit of a bargain basement buy!  The top was from an eBay trader, so brand new, and would probably be good for travelling since I often find planes quite chilly. The top is an asymmetric design in cotton and silk.

I have teamed with pink jeggings from George at Asda - a bargain at £12.50 since they are quite thick, and the pink suede boots were from Primark last winter.




The pink pearl and diamante earrings are from my favourite shop - Simply Devine - while the pink ring is another item in my jewellery box which has been there for years.


I should add that since we took the photographs, I have cleaned out the dead plants from the pots and the azalias are now in bloom and are stunning!
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Friday, 4 May 2018

EXPERIMENTING WITH COLOUR


After 40 years of friendship, the other Anne's love affair with colour is finally rubbing off on me, and with her help I have been experimenting with colour.  

More than 25 years ago I had a colour analysis done so I immediately went rummaging around in a drawer to see if I could find the little file that I was given as it seemed an interesting place to start my journey with colour.


I am basically  supposed to go with a SUMMER palette which would include soft colours, nothing with sharp contrast,  and favouring soft hues of blue, rose and off white.  I should avoid yellow and anything with a yellow hue and go for beiges and browns with a rose undertone.  As I am fair, I should wear soft colours close to the face but can mix with the brighter spectrum.  Which is all a gross over-simplification but hopefully you get the drift.  

SOFT NEUTRALS 
This is supposed to include soft white, rose toned beiges and browns, greyed navy and blue greys.  


First up is a light blue jumper from Hoopers in Harrogate. The photo is not helped by the lighting in the fitting room which does cast a green light over everything, but I think it does work although it doesn't over excite me.



I really love this pale pink top from COS and think this is a flattering colour for me.  So much so I have a new jacket in pink that my daughter bought me and I am really looking forward to wearing that in the coming weeks. 


Soft greys/silver also work and is a colour I have a fair amount of in my closet - as my daughter always says it matches my hair!

BASIC COLOURS

Apparently I should incorporate burgundy, raspberry, grey-blue, deep blue green, blue red and water melon.... please don't ask me what water melon looks like as a colour, I have no idea. 


Of  all the clothes  we tried on this was probably the closest to a colour on the palette, and I do think it works as it sits within the raspberry/mauve tone.


This bright purple top doesn't quite have the right amount of blue in the hue and so it is too vibrant for my skin tone (Actually I like this one on you Anne ! (Comment from Anne C).


I actually really loved this bright pink top and it felt fabulous for a summer wardrobe, but it would be considered a no no as is too strong and lacks a blue undertone.  I might ignore that though.

This turquoise is also too strong and lacks the sea-green tone which is better for me.


COLOURS TO AVOID 

Step away from reds with a yellow undertone, oranges and yellows other than a soft lemon would appear to be the rule.  I must say having looked at the next set of colours on me I think that is probably correct as they really do overwhelm my colouring.


I think the fact that I have fairly strong make up on does help this look but I am not sure I would go for such a powerful orange again.


I was pleasantly surprised by the yellow,  maybe as it is a buttery yellow it has been helped, but again I am not sure it is something I would choose to buy. I would definitely avoid any acid yellows and have previously tried the lemon tone but really didn't like it.


I know this is not a true orange as we tried to soften by choosing one with some pink in, but again I really am not keen.  The make up is not as strong and the lighting does drain the colour but I do think it makes me look very insipid.


I didn't think this top looked that bad in the shop but it really does not flatter in this shot.  By the colour rules I should have a brown with a more blue undertone rather than this which tends towards yellow.  There is only really one brown on the colour wheel so maybe something I should just avoid at all costs.

I would love to know what you guys think and if you favour one colour over any other.  We need to continue our investigation and try to find the specific greens and blues that the analysis recommends. It is all well and good saying you can wear these colours but it is really not that easy to find them.




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Friday, 27 April 2018

SMART BLACK TROUSERS




The thing we love about black trousers is that they are so versatile.  Wear them with a sweater for a smart casual look, with a jacket and shirt for work, or with a glitzy top for an evening out.

As we have always emphasised, we have very different styles and body shapes, so our individual take on smart black trousers is quite different.  Below we have styled our black trousers to suit our lifestyles, pockets and wardrobes.Anne C is wearing her favourite colour pink with this short boiled wool jacket which was a lucky find in a local charity shop and cost just £3.99, and still had the original tags on.  She has teamed it with one of her favourite tops in cream lace from Kaleidoscope which she has probably had for around 15 years, also owning its sister in black. It has washed and been worn more times than she can remember but is a great fit because it has a stretchy back and beautiful quality lace front. They even still have a very similar one in stock in a number of colours here.



The black crepe trousers are Marks and Spencer from a previous season, but similar wool ones are available here.  We both struggle with M&S's fashion choices sometimes, but you can always get a perfect pair of black trousers, since they sell different lengths, which is perfect for Anne's short legs.

The black mock-crock ankle boots are from Faith from a previous season, and she has accessorised with black earrings from H&M which were a gift from her daughter (no longer available in black, but they do have them in red, pink, yellow or green here).




Anne H is wearing beautifully cut MaxMara wool crepe trousers that she has had for years. When she was working she would always invest in a pair of these trousers and often a jacket purchased in their sale as she finds the cut and length are perfect for her frame. Looking on their site they have a very similar pair of wool crepe trousers available now at £178 reduced from £255.  Given the number of years she has had these they are a very good investment.



She has teamed with a sale purchase from this year from Jigsaw - a beautiful silk front top in fuschia. Now in the sale at £49, down from £98.  It has a lovely relaxed fit with long sleeves and soft V to the neckline and a lightweight jersey back.  It will be perfect paired with jeans or dressed up with heels and a feature necklace as shown here for an evening look. She has completed her outfit with a pair of black suede court shoes purchased from Hobbs a number of years ago, fortunately of a height she can still walk in!


Anne C's second outfit includes the same trousers as previously shown, but this time she has teamed it with a black lace top, created a neutral backdrop for the splash of colour - the pink jacket would just as easily have been appropriate for this shot.  Instead, she has made the outfit a little more casual with a wool cardigan-style jacket which has more of a relaxed fit.




Bought recently in TKMaxx - you sometimes have to sort through oodles of  racks before finding something suitable, which is not for everyone.  She has personalised the look with a brooch pin bought in Iceland in January, while the  H&M earrings are the same as in her previous shots, but in a deep red shade rather than black.






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Friday, 20 April 2018

MASSIMO DUTTI SHOPPING SPREE


I have to start this post by saying how hugely impressed I am with Massimo Dutti at the moment, I think their styling and quality is completely on point and I could spend an absolute fortune with them. But common sense has prevailed and I have been looking at their sale rails as well as new in.

My first acquisition was made whilst in Bruges and is this lovely camel three quarter coat which had  30% off so was a great buy.  A really versatile piece for the Spring and although I normally keep away from double breasted jackets I think this single row is fine .  My normal objection being that double breasted makes me look wider and looks messy whilst undone.  I seemed to manage to overcome these objections for this one though!



Next up was this single button houndstooth blazer which has a really country feel to it.  It is a bit too big for me and so has gone back, but I couldn't resist the chance to model it with the perfectly toning polo neck that I purchased.


The slim fit houndstooth blazer is a sale buy at £79.95 and is a wool blend.  I think it looks really smart and have spotted that they have a double breasted version as well that is also in the sale but alas also too big.


The polo neck is a silk/wool blend and was another sale buy, sadly sold out now.  But I have spotted they have some gorgeous knitwear for Spring so think I may be venturing back for an online shop.  It is a crying shame that we don't have a shop in the North so it has to be online.


The last purchase in my mini splurge is this  embellished frock style coat with a Chanel-esque vibe.  Primarily cotton, it is a great wardrobe addition for Spring and will look great dressed up or down. I have teamed with the polo again and some tailored MaxMara trousers and Dune heels.


It is the flattering length that I really favour and includes a light lurex thread to add a bit of glamour and I think at £139 is a reasonable price for such a quality jacket.



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