To start this week's blog post, I'd like to put forth the following question, "Who, in their right mind would go out in February without a coat?"
I'll give you a clue: The answer starts with M and ends with E.
In my defence, it was unnaturally sunny for February. Due to the terrifying effects of Global Warming, there had been an abundance of Spring for days. I decided that for my trip to York with Alan, it would be totally top banana to venture out sans outerwear layer.
The sensible among you can probably guess how this scenario turned out. One step onto the historic wall of York sent arctic chills right through my diaphanous polka-dot kimono (£8.99 new with tags from eBay if you’re interested)The gusts also penetrated my thin jersey dress and leggings and I was forced to admit what a fool I'd been.
No less than 3 poses in, I was forced to abandon the shoot and declare, "I really could do with getting a coat in a chazza for a pound or something".
Alan scoffed a scornful laugh. "As if that's going to happen" he sniggered. "We don't even know if there's a chazza near here. Never mind one that sells coats for a pound"
Readers, you will know by now that I do not make bold statements unless I have solid evidence to back them up. You also know that I am the master of bargains and that anything is possible where chazzas are concerned. However, the only evidence I had was something I like to call 'chazza sixth sense'. For some unexplainable reason, I have been blessed with an inbuilt chazza GPS and a psychic intuition about whether such chazzas will yeild the bounty I crave.
Notwithstanding, we walked 100 yards down the road and happened upon a St. Leonard's Hospice where I procured a jacket for a pound!!! Al was shook, maybe you are too. To be fair, my only criteria for finding a jacket was it needed to fit me and be a pound. But I amazed myself when I found something that actually looked alright and went with my existing clobber. So henceforth, I present to you this pinstripe blazer of the peplum hem persuasion with a double-breasted fastening. Originally from George, it was in near mint condition and would serve not only as a welcome extra layer, but a valuable addition to my everyday blazer collection.
I am incredibly proud of myself for this fashion score; I was boasting about it to a very shook Al for the rest of the day. Being forced to eat his words wasn't sitting well, but he did agree that it was one of the best bargains I'd ever thrifted.
Warmth restored, I was able to carry on with the shoot. I loved this little window nook bit along the Roman walls and muchly enjoyed the way the light cast a pleasing shadow through it. Al thoughtfully shouted, "watch you don't get a mossy arse!" before I sat down, but luckily the moss was quite dry and coarse, so did not transfer at all to said arse.
Footwear-wise, I am experimenting with trainers that are right out of my comfort zone. I clocked these big, clunky white plastic contraptions a while ago in Primark and even though they are bang-on trend I just wasn't sure whether they'd suit me. Or even if they were nice. You know I love a Primark trainer, but these were so big, so wide and so nasty it took a real leap of faith to try them on. However, once on the old trotters, they won me over with their comfort value. Who cares if I look like I'm about to enter the women's 100 metres anyway? An added bonus of these trainers is that they are a dead ringer for the Balenciaga ones at a fraction of the price. I'm talking like, £500 difference!
For my accessories, I piled on a bunch of stuff I'd bought the day before on a day out to Ormskirk with pals. Ormskirk has some of the best chazzas in the North West region and the prices are simply amazing.
Take this raffia bag for instance, from the British Heart Foundation. An absolute steal at £2.99, with no marks, damage or fraying. Raffia and wicker bags were huge last summer and are set to remain popular for 2019. I missed out on getting the circular bag that everyone had, but this bucket shaped version is a decent nod to the trend and something a little bit different. Also from the BHF was this gold metal belt which cost a grand total of £2.49! I'd been after something like this for ages, ever since spotting a similar version in Topshop for £30. After many, many, many years of shopping in the chazzas, I've noticed that you can nearly always find similar versions or even exact items that are on the high street for a fraction of the price. I look for inspiration in places like Topshop, Zara and Asos and then clean up at the chazzas.
But you can also find items that are completely unique and like nothing you've ever seen before in all your born days. Prime examples of this are my pearl and gold necklace and ring. The BHF was on fire that day, I bagged the necklace for £1.99 and the ring for 99p!
Finally, I topped off my look with a pair of giant pearl hair clips purchased for £2 each on eBay. The humble hair barette is enjoying something of a renaissance and I'm more than happy to indulge in anything that keeps my wayward locks under control. Just be careful to check the dispatch times on eBay as lots of these clips are coming from Korea aka the outer edges of the galaxy. I've got a pair of giant green clips in transit, but they appear to have got delayed over the Pacific Ocean somewhere. It would have been far easier to go to Accessorize, but you know me I'll do anything for a bargain, even wait two months for it!
Finally, I busted out these new £3 hexagon sunglasses from shopping Mecca Primark. Fun fact: I answered the question 'how many sides does a hexagon have' incorrectly in a recent quiz! I was crying laughing when I realised they have 6 sides and not 5. It just shows you that a BA Hons degree and 125 point IQ score counts for nothing in life, although to be fair, my degree is not in shapes. Another fun fact is that I was strongly advised NOT to buy these by the friend I went shopping with that day. She indicated her strong displeasure with a violent thumbs-down action, but you know what, I follow my own path in life and bought them anyway. I'm a firm believer in trusting your own fashion instincts and not giving a fuck what anyone else thinks. I LOVE these sunglasses and think their 6-sided hexagonal shape is simply dreamy. Try not giving a fuck this week and see how it goes, you'll be amazed!
Tune in next time to see what I'm not giving a fuck about,