Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Throwback to summer - Cottage life at Rievaulx

Possibly my favourite picture of me ever...
With winter really coming in now and the darker nights and colder days taking over I started thinking back to summer. Not the summer just gone, as that was filled with so much craziness it's a bit of a blur, what with all the... erm... baby, but the summer before that. The one that was lovely and calm. The one where I could fit into all of my pretty dresses.

I was between one teaching job and another on summer holidays and I was staying with my parents while I sorted things out and moved onto my new place. As a little treat they had booked a cottage at the tiny area of Rievaulx in North Yorkshire. I went to visit with them there with my husband.

I always thought thatched cottages were cute, but a bit weird and I never really believed they would keep you warm and rain free. Buy it turns out they do as we had a torrential thunder storm while we were there and we were still mega cosy!
Because of its cuteness couldn't resist a few shots of me in my lovely kitty dress. I've posted about this dressbefore but it looks so grand with the cottage I felt like sharing. It it's the lily of the valley dress which was such a staple of my wardrobe. I've had this dress for about 3 years I think and I wore if so often. I still think its lasting well, even if I can't quite fit into it riiiiight now.

That is Rievaulx Abbey in the background. The view from the cottage was amazing! And of course being an old village it had a lovely traditional red phonebox!

Have you ever stayed in a cottage? I find I end up loving the cute cottage country life while I visit but I do miss easy access to good shopping.

Dress: Vivien of Holloway
Shoes: Clarks
Belt: Primark (stay classy!)

Friday, 18 November 2016

Joules Coast waterproof coat - my new go to for rainy days

I'm not quiet sure where this year is going, it seems like it was Christmas only a few minutes ago not nearly a whole year! I must say I feel pretty disorganised about the whole thing and it doesn't help that as soon as Halloween is out of the way all the Christmas adverts start and at the chocolaty coins and yule logs start to appear. 

Anywho, what I'm trying to say is that were well into our journey through autumn and gosh has the weather changed.

I live right on the coast in Northumberland and it is amazing to be able to get up and see the sea straight in front of us it's true the northern weather can get a bit wild (not that I'd ever like to admit it to my southern friends hehe). As I knew I'd be walking around a lot with either a pram or a baby strapped to me I decided quickly after Elizabeth was born I had to get a really good water proof coat. It's quite difficult to hold an umbrella while pushing a pram so I wanted one that was really weather proof. Wind and rain.

After some thinking I knew I wanted one that was suitable for summer, able to be packed up in the bottom of a changing bag just in case and was also suitable for layering up in winter. There are quite a lot of cheaper plastic PVC coats but I wanted something breathable too so I figured I'd need to pay fair money.

In the end I decided on a fisherman style Coast jacket from Joules as I know their stuff is good quality. It was so hard to choose a colour though - I really did want to get a traditional yellow one as I love that fisherman look but I just didn't think yellow would go with enough of my things (not that this is true). In the end I went with the French Navy as I thought that was more easy to match to outfits.

I ordered my blue Coast coat and it arrived promptly. I wore it of and on throughout August and September but it has really come into it's own as we've moved through October and into November (you can see it here). It was so perfect for summer and it was light and easy to pack away just like I wanted. However I have been wearing it a lot layered over cardigans and dresses so I could keep warm and dry.

 I've always been a little dubious about waterproof clothing but I recently wore it in a very heavy downpour and I can say for sure that it is excellent at keeping you dry.

I love the details of the coat, the fact that the pockets are waterproof too and there are ties that you can easily adjust to keep the hood up. And, oh my gosh, that stripey lining is so classic!

The only problem I have found with this coat is that the box shape that is traditional with this coat is a little snug over the mum tum. I can fasten it up but as a lady that has always been a little round in that area it can be a little bit of a challenge. But it won't take long for that to sort itself out.

In truth although I paid around £75 for the coat (I got it from an official Joules stockist) I have easily got my monies worth because I have worn it so many times. It's not the most vintage looking thing but this style is a classic and the clashing colours you can buy it in can be more of a statement piece. I certainly haven't had any trouble wearing it with lovely retro style dresses. The exact jacket I got is now sold out but they have a variation on it every season so it will always be easy to get your hands on one.

Outfit Details:
Coat: Joules Coast in French Navy, Cardigan: Lindy Bop, Dress: Vivien of Holloway Kitty, Shoes: Office

Do you have any coats that are suitable for a wet and rainy day?

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

A quiet Halloween hiking with my little pumpkin in Northumberland

Halloween had always been a big deal for me. I've always gone somewhere or done something, whether that be a visit to a comic convention or a night out or a gathering at a friends. But I'm living a quieter life at the moment with the (not so) new baby so this year was a quieter affair.

My parents had booked a holiday cottage for Halloween in Craster, a tiny village on the Northumberland coast. From the cottage you could see Dunstanburgh castle on the hill nearby and there was a lovely cool calm about the place - so relaxing!

We went out for several walks along the coast. When it comes to walking and hiking I'm a bit of a weirdo. Most people wear special trousers and fleeces etc. but I've always been adamant that I can wear a dress. I still have a waterproof coat and a good study pair of boots but if I can't wear a dress, it's not worth doing ;)

Once of my current staples is the Audrey dress by Lindy Bop. The Audrey is one of their more iconic designs and the two I currently wear are made from a I'm thick cotton broadcloth with autumnal florals, one in blue, one in black. What is even better I got them in the crazy summer sale this year so they were only £9 each (they are still on sale in a few small sizes). They have definitely paid for themselves 10 times over as I wear them both all the time! I am also wearing them with a Lindy Bop cardigan which is doing okay, but not fairing half as well at the dresses.

We took the little madam for a walk in her ergobaby carrier which is somehow still comfy after several miles even with a 18lb baby like mine. She was so interested in everything around it was fascinating to watch her watching everything else.

We repeated the walk a few days later and I had the push chair, an interesting experience I'll say, and that is when my mum took that amazing silhouette photograph heading this post. The Sun was just getting low in the sky and the light was so perfect.

This is the most relaxed I've ever spent a Halloween but I must say I rather enjoyed it.

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