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June Scavenger Hunt

Thursday, 30 June 2011

Oof, where has the month gone? I haven't quite had my head in the right place recently and at least 5 of the photos for this month's scavenger hunt were hastily snapped today or yesterday. All done in the nick of time though. This month's categories were:

A childhood memory:

Fighting with my big brother. We were horrible children. I remember Mum turning round to us after a holiday in Florida and saying "you RUINED that holiday." We really did - we were awful, bratty little horrors.. Luckily we get on very well now we're both (sort of) grown up.


Well, I'm allergic to dairy and didn't fancy lurking with my camera in the cheese counter of the supermarket... The bloke on the cover of the left hand book reminds me so much of someone famous and I can't think who. Possibly Daniel Craig with a bad wig?

A farm animal:

Pigs! I was so pleased to see these whilst walking along the canal that I went "PIGS!" at the top of my voice. I think the passers-by thought I was a bit special.


In my youth, wars were waged over who got to eat their pudding with The Silver Spoon. Then The Golly Spoon arrived and things calmed down. (Please don't start with any acccusations of racism - the Robertsons golly was just a character as far as I was concerned at that age).

Alas poor Silver Spoon, thou art tarnished now.

Tree branches:

In the woods at work.


How I end up most nights. Radio 5Live, writing my diary and late night texting other night owls.

Something beginning with z...

Why didn't I just take a proper photo of Zoe at the bloggers meetup?! Grrr. This is a random bar in Liverpool. I've never been in so I can't tell you if it's any good or not. I'm thinking probably not.

A wheel trim:

Trim on my car steering wheel. The dratted vehicle got so over excited by doing 50,000 miles and then having an MOT that it broke the very next day. Never buy a Renault!

Something with your town's name on it:

Also happens to be the name of my football team.

The view right outside your door:

Lots of roses. We really need to put down some more wood chippings though.

An elephant:

A Primark necklace. I kinda wish I'd bought it now - cute eh?

Architectural detail:

It's the gargoyle on the bridge at work. I love him.

Red Touches

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

I'm in quite the scatty mood today. 10 hours sleep in 2 days and an extremely late night baking session will do that to me. Thank goodness I pulled an outfit together before I went to sleep last night or there's a good chance I'd be at work in my pyjamas today. Although this is Liverpool so I probably wouldn't have looked out of place. Girls here really do go out shopping in their pjs - with bright orange faces and their hair in giant rollers. I will never understand it.

I love this cardigan a quite ridiculous amount. Cats! Rings! Bags! WINE! Four of my favourite things.

Cardi - Topshop, present from my lovely Char
Skirt - H&M, blog sale
Shoes & necklace worn as bracelet - Dorothy Perkins
Vintage clutch - present from the fabulous Margaret.

I think I went to about three ballet lessons when I was little. The cute wraparound cardigan interested me more than the dancing did, so I can't remember anything about the actual dancing positions. Perhaps my love of Strictly Come Dancing has paid off though - my arms look quite ballroomy here.

Do you like how I've matched my plaster to my outfit? Tres chic. I grated the crap out of my fingers whilst attempting to clean the zester part of the grater at 2.30am this morning. Sad face. Any handy hints on how to clean zesters properly without injuring yourself?

The Small Things

Saturday, 25 June 2011

I would quite like to kick life in the face at the moment. Preferably whilst wearing steel toe-capped boots. It's been a tough couple of weeks - stressful and tiring and full of death, grief and an assortment of petty annoyances.

At the risk of sounding either completely trite or like an utter Pollyanna, sometimes appreciating the small things really does help make a difference and put a smile back on your face. Things like going for a walk with your family:

Larking about inside a restored canal boat:

Walking around a bend and discovering that quintessentially English thing, a cricket match:

Having a drink at a canalside pub:

Eating Yorkshire Mixtures:

Playing with the brother's kittenses. They've got so big!:

And generally being silly:

Weirdly, I think I quite suit it.


Wednesday, 22 June 2011

This is what happens when you have 10 minutes to get dressed and ready in the morning. Skirt gets grabbed from the wardrobe, there's a frantic rummage through the ironing pile to find something that sort of goes in terms of colours, a quick press and away we go.

As as a result I think I am pattern clashing more than I have ever pattern clashed before. I blame the skirt. I love it, but it's quite lively isn't it? I've only ever worn it with block colours before but as you may already know from my witterings about The Great Top Shortage of 2011, I don't have a great selection in the wardrobe in the moment. Patterned top it had to be. I'm not particularly fussed, even if it has already drawn the odd weird look from people at work. So what if it clashes? I'm dressed - what more do you want?

Top - H&M via charity shop
Cardi - Tesco sale
Skirt - blog sale
Shoes - Next clearance
Ring & headband - Dorothy Perkins sale

(Do I buy anything full price? Not if I can help it!)

The Big Reveal

Monday, 20 June 2011

My mantra for the past two years.

In June 2009 I was on holiday in Bruges. I looked like this:

In June 2011 I look like this:

Flattering lighting, airbrushing and miracle M&S bras work wonders, don't they? But self deprecation aside, I am very pleased with myself. I've lost 8 stone now (or 112lb if you prefer). A whole person!

The competition prize of a free photoshoot with For Your Eyes Only came at a perfect time really. Despite the fact that I was utterly terrified and having serious doubts about doing it, I listened to all your support and encouragement and thought that yes, I should stop being a wuss and go and celebrate my new body. You know what? I had a brilliant time! It genuinely was really good fun. Lian (my photographer, who was lovely) asked at the start if I'd be up for doing any nude photos and I was all mimblewimbley and muttered something along the lines of "I dunno. Can we see how I feel later?" Half an hour later and I was merrily prancing around the studio in just a pair of high heels.

I've never been body confident. I'm still not, but I look at these photos and I think back to that sense of exhilaration and fun I had that afternoon in the studio and I know I'm getting there. Slowly, but I'm getting there. And I'm proud of myself. Proud enough (and brave enough!) to show off the pictures anyway. There are a couple of slightly more risque ones but they remain for my eyes only. A girl has to preserve some air of mystery...

In Brief

Saturday, 18 June 2011

Just a very quick weekend post to update you all on a few things:
  • I've succumbed to the lure of Twitter. I set up a work account a little while ago and it surprised me by how fun it was, so I've created a personal one too. Still don't entirely know what I'm doing on there but please come and talk to me! It's @OddSocksAlex

  • I've guest posted over at Chloe Likes To Talk. Lucky Chloe is off on her hols so I've talked about (surprise, surprise) reading.

  • Am very honoured to have been featured again in the Penny Dreadful Vintage Vintage Tips, Tutorials & Links Roundup post. This is one of my favourite weekly posts and always gives me lots of great reading material for the weekend.

  • The photoshoot photos arrived this morning! Squeee!! I'll post about it in a few days.
Right, I must dash. I have banana muffins to bake and a mini festival in the park to attend this afternoon. I know I'm behind on comments (AGAIN!) so shall try and catch up over the weekend.

Matchstalk Men

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Item number two from the weekend's vintage shopping purchases: a patterned shirt. And what a pattern it is! There's something very Lowry-esque about it.

Jeans - Dorothy Perkins
Shirt - vintage (I think West German? The label is definitely foreign)
Wedges - Dolcis, present
Bangle - pinched from Mum's jewellery box

First of all, do excuse the giant black socks faux-pas I'm making in these photos. We are having an extremely unpredictable sort of day weather-wise. I had to dash out in a break in the pouring rain to quickly snap these photos and it was just too cold to go bare footed so emergency socks had to be brought into use. In my defence, no-one can see them under my desk... It's also too cold to have any sort of bare arms on display, so I'm currently huddled in a work fleece jacket. Stylish it is not.

Interesting fact for you all - I have never worn flared jeans before today. Never. I bought these a few months ago in a fit of madness, encouraged by surprisingly flattering changing room lighting. Despite being petite length, they are too long for everyday wear and need wedges or platforms of some description so the time has just never seemed quite right to wear them. This shirt seemed to be crying out for something super 70's to go with it though so I brought them out for their first airing today. I'd like them to be a darker wash as I'm feeling thigh conscious in them in a way that I never am in my indigo skinnies, but they're kinda fun. I shall channel my inner Donna and stomp around a bit. I'm sure I'll grow to love them.


Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Item number one from the weekend's vintage shopping purchases: a slightly mad maxi.

Confession time. I did not buy this for myself. I saw it and immediately thought "ooh, I could totally see Vix in it." However, upon getting it home I realised it would absolutely swim on her (am I the only one who is TERRIBLE at judging sizing in things without labels? I seriously thought it was much smaller than it really is) and tried it on myself. It fits, I love it and I'm keeping it.

It's a bit bolder than things I usually buy but I think this is the year of breaking out of my comfort zone. Playsuits, maxis, crazy prints - there's room for them all in my wardrobe now!

Maxi - vintage
Vest top - Dorothy Perkins
Cardi - Primark
Wedges - Dolcis, present
Sunnies - Marks & Spencer
Vintage bangles & beads - present from lovely Zoe
Flower clips - H&M

Meet the Bloggers

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Yesterday was the North West Bloggers meetup in Manchester and my, what a fun day we had!
First up, meet everyone:

Zoe (Pennyblossoms), Danielle (A Blog From Blackpool), Mrs B (Mrs Bossa Does The Do), Char (t*rexes and tiaras), Helen (Afeitar) and Pearl (Fashion Pearls of Wisdom).

And moi obviously. Chanelling the 80's reject vibe, I wore:

Tshirt - Gap sale
Shorts - H&M
Jacket - vintage Betty Barclay, pinched from Mum
Heels - Irregular Choice

We met at Walrus for drinks and scrumptious Japanese food for lunch (which I didn't photograph cos I was too busy eating it), then onto Nexus, a fab little arts cafe which was full of people making giant carnival mask things:

Where there are bloggers, there are cameras!

Most people had gorgeous looking cake but I was trying to be good and stuck to a Love Heart or two.
Then we went for a spot of vintage shopping. I really wasn't meant to be spending any money but what can you do? Lovely things just sort of fell off the rails into my arms.

Still think we should have bought matching Christmas jumpers...

And we tried on comedy jumpsuits - Mrs B and Pearl looked really glam, I looked like a cross between Challenge Anneka and a plumber! Oh well, I consoled myself with my lovely new purchases. I'm sure they'll all feature in outfit posts very soon but here's a sneaky peek of what I bought:

I had such a lovely day. I can honestly say that I've never met a blogger in real life who I didn't really like. We'll definitely have to do it again soon.