Tuesday, 26 November 2019

The dress challenge continues...

Day 3

This is one of two Desigual dresses I own. This is a summer weight dress which I wear with a big cardigan around the house. I can't remember where I got it from but it may have been in Ireland.

Long sleeved tee - Primarni, years ago. Tights charity shopped. Boots by River Island from my Barnardo's.

All jewellery charity shopped.

A bit of good news! I've got a place at the Christmas lunch. I received a phone call telling me the good news. I will get to sing Christmas carols after all...

I went walking by myself on Wednesday. The weather was lovely; chilly but sunny. My group was walking quite far away in Hertfordshire and I don't like spending an hour in the car driving to a walk and an hour back. It also takes up the best part of the day. Anyway, I set off to walk by the river and en route decided to walk on to Sandy and stop and look in the charity shops; then catch a bus back. I thought it would be about a 7 mile walk; but in fact it was 9.25 miles by the time I got to Sandy town centre! I had to stop for a cup of tea and a sit down... I found a nice pair of matching trousers and jacket in a lightweight material (for summer, really) in the Wood Green Animal shelter shop for 7.00. I was quite stiff the next day and put off any further walking as I didn't want my knee to flare up. It also rained a lot on Thursday.

Day 4

This is my 20p M&Co jacket from my Barnardo's. The pinafore dress is by Red Herring and I think was a 99p bargain from Barnardo's a while back.

I had to go back to the doctor's on Thursday morning to get my BP checked as it was a bit high when I had a health check a few weeks ago. I had planned to walk there but the rain put that off. It was still a bit high when the nurse measured it, so I got a blood pressure monitor to take home to check my BP three times a day for a week. I'm hoping my BP will be alright and that I won't need medication. Unfortunately, high BP runs in my family and it also happens as you age... I had errands to run in town when I got back; including the overdue visit to the library and I did the weekly shopping. I did manage to squeeze in a visit to the Cat's Protection League charity shop where I bought a bottle of Estee Lauder perfume and a bottle of Valentino perfume for under 7.00 (I am a lover of perfume and wear it every day). I checked the perfumes out online and the Estee Lauder perfume retails at 129.00 and the Valentino one at 69.00, so that was a great find. They both smell really good. I also bought a woollen wrap around coat for 8.00 - no label, but roomy and practical. A plain black coat I've never worn went into the charity shop bag to make room for the new one.

Scarf and all jewellery charity shopped.

 The top is a vintage patterned one which was a 1.00 rail bargain from, I think, the Salvation Army shop. It has a German label and I've had it for quite a few years. It's brown, cream, orange and turquoise and I thought it went well this dress. The tights were a present and the boots are from Primarni. I wanted a pair of animal print ones in a Chelsea boot style; but couldn't find any in the charity shops. You wait, I bet I'll start finding lots now I've stopped looking! Still looking for that animal print, knitted dress - with no success so far.

I picked up my reservation from the library and am reading it now. It's called 'Reckless Daughter' by David Yaffe; a biography of Joni Mitchell. I played the albums; 'Blue' and 'For the Roses' so often when I was 17, that I wore both vinyl copies out and had to replace them! The book is a fascinating read and gives a lot of information and detail about her songs; many of which are autobiographical - as I always suspected. For example, 'Little Green' is about the child she gave up for adoption in the 1960s; 'A Case of You' is a compilation of her relationships with Leonard Cohen and Graham Nash (of Crossby, Stills, Nash and Young). This is the first biography of a musical artist I've ever read. I nearly always read biographies and autobiographies of authors. Actually, let me correct that  - I did read Morrissey's autobiography back in 2013. Facebook provided me with that information when it asked me if I wanted to repost a memory from 6 years ago!

Day 5

I went for a swim on Friday and did 30 laps - 2k. My eyes and sinuses were fine.. I'm wearing my other Desigual dress which was a gift from Vix of Vintage Vixen
 blog HERE.

Beads and earrings charity shopped. I don't bother with bangles and rings when I go swimming. It makes getting dressed longer!

I wore my Nike camouflage leggings underneath for warmth; charity shopped from my Barnardo's and charity shopped black Chelsea boots. Can you see my new jewellery display above my head? Bought from the Dog's Trust charity shop, when Hilary was here last weekend and OH kindly secured it to the door for me. It's just occurred to me how well my black and red corduroy jacket would go with this dress; they're very similar in colour and have lots of detail  on both of them.  A closer look at the jewellery display:

I have 2 other racks with necklaces on them and 8 hooks full of necklaces! I need to stop buying necklaces...

On my walk back from town on one of the days I went, I spotted this new to me plaque next to our Sainsbury's Local, just around the corner from where I live. When I led a Blue Plaque Walk around Bedford a couple of years ago I included 16 blue plaques. The number has now risen to 21 in and around Bedford!

Saturday was a bit grey and gloomy but I set off for a walk hoping to beat the forecasted rain. I walked to the village of Bromham and back which was 6.65 miles. I didn't wear a dress as it wasn't practical for walking to wear one so I had a day off from dresses!

This is Bromham Church - St. Owens seen from across the common. When I lived in this village 28 years ago I used to bring our dog, Ben for walks here.

All from Barnardo's; either mine in Great Denham or from the 1.00 rail in the Ampthill branch except the cardigan which was from the 1.00 rail in the RSPCA in Ampthill. Boden top and trousers and no label blue cardigan. Boots online retail.

I like these shorter flared style of trousers but I don't like the draughty gap between top of boots and bottom of trousers!

All jewellery charity shopped.

Day 6

I wore this to volunteer at Barnardo's on Monday. The dress is by Boden and was bought from my Barnardo's earlier this year when all the dresses were reduced to 2.00. The top underneath is by M&S and was from a 1.00 rail.

Charity shopped leggings and boots online retail. My knees look enormous!

Look, pockets!

All jewellery charity shopped. Scarf present from grandson.

Day 7
I wore this to the Food bank on Tuesday.

All jewellery and scarf charity shopped.

Everything charity shopped. Boiled wool jacket; Daycare Hospice shop in Kempston. The dress is from an Irish charity shop but I can't remember which one; boots can't remember either! Tights: online retail.

Just after I took these photos I stupidly reached over a naked to flame to a cupboard and singed the bottom of this jacket. I'm going to sew the brooch  on the lapel above, which is made from similar felted wool, to the bottom where it's singed...

Day 7

Green dress from my Barnardo's. Jacket: Barnardo's in Ampthill. Boots my Barnardo's. Plaid tights also charity shopped but can't remember where.

This dress has pockets! I love pockets.

All jewellery and headscarf charity shopped except the earrings which OH bought as a present for me on Oxford Market many years ago.

Again last Wednesday my group were walking quite far away so I went out for a walk by myself around the town and did 6.65 miles. In the afternoon I paid a visit to one of the 4 Daycare Hospice shops  in Bedford and bought a few items from the 1.00 rail; a Whistles t shirt, an orange M&S cotton tunic; a cotton over shirt by Red Herring; and a pair of New Look plaid leggings. The tops will be put away for summer and I'll make use of the leggings under dresses and tunics. I also bought a necklace for 1.00 which I'm wearing below and a black fluffy beret adorned with buttons by Coast.

Day 8

Jacket by 100 Idees bought in a Donegal charity shop for 5 euros.

I'm now very bored with wearing dresses! The weather has turned very cold and even leggings under the dresses isn't always warm enough.  I also miss wearing skirts and trousers! I still intend to wear all 22 dresses and complete the challenge; but I am going to include a few I've already worn recently on my last post and I won't wear a dress every single day. It might take a few weeks to get through the 22 but it doesn't matter...

I bought this dress, which isn't by Desigual, in a Mullingar charity shop for 5 euros.  I wore it with my red Nike camouflage leggings; charity shopped in my Barnardo's and black Chelsea boots charity shopped in Oxfam for 5.00.

I bought the earrings in Bedford market and the necklace was bought on Wednesday's rummage for 1.00.

Thursday was a very busy day. I went to the dentist and hairdresser in the morning and in the afternoon it was back to Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge with the youngest grandson. His operation is next week. When I got back I had to do the food shopping and that was it the day had gone!

On Friday I did the school run, went into town to run some errands and then I had a doctors appointment. Unfortunately, I do have high blood pressure and have to take daily medication for it. I was so upset; I've managed so far without any medication so this really was a blow. However, I am very lucky that this is the only heath issue I have so I won't moan anymore! I missed swimming on Friday afternoon as I got back from the doctor appointment/prescription collection too late to have enough time left for a swim and pick up the grandchildren from school. I may try to go next Tuesday after the food bank as well as next Friday to make up for it.

I finished the Hydrangea Stripe blanket#2.

Here it is washed and hanging over the bannisters to dry.

 I don't think the photograph does justice to the colours. They are lovely blues with a few greens thrown in;  they remind  of the colours of the sea. I have christened it; the Sea Hydrangea Stripe blanket. It will be wrapped up and given to middle grandson's little brother as part of his Christmas present. I've made blankets for all my grandchildren; my daughter has had two; OH has had one;  Hilary has had two; eldest grandson's girlfriend got one I made for her last Christmas and I've made one for one my cousin Liam's (RIP) daughter, Roisin, when she was born 7 years ago. I need to think about the next project...

I don't know what is up with my phone camera. The photos are not as good as it used to take although the spec on the new phone is higher . The close ups seem crisper and clearer but not the distance photos. The other issue is the sizing; but that's a Blogger thing - all my photos are selected as X-large, but just look at the variation in sizes! It's very frustrating.

I have a collection of harbour pictures on my stairs and landing. I am always attracted to the sea and its surroundings. If you believe in signs I am a Pisces!

Days 9 -12

All dresses charity shopped. This is the cheat bit... dresses I've worn recently on the blog. From top left: dress by Oliver Bonas; top right; dress by H&M; bottom left dress by Mudd and Water 50p at car boot sale; bottom right BNWT Joe Brown dress.

Day 13

This is the dress I bought in a Northampton charity shop a few weeks ago. It's by Sweewee which seems to be a cheap French label. The label on the dress does say Paris. It's not as short as I thought, so I could wear it as a dress with tights; but decided to wear it with trousers as I would be in and out all day and the weather is chilly. I thought afterwards I could have worn it with my grey cable knit tights  and over the knee boots - next time! I am wearing minimal make up; highlighter, blusher, lipstick and just pencil and Vaseline on my eyes as I was expecting to go swimming...

I've had these flared Next cords for ever, but can't remember which charity shop they came from. Boots also charity shopped.

All jewellery charity shopped except the earrings from New Look's sale earlier this year.

Blue plaques keep popping up in Bedford:

I spotted this one in the High Street on my trip to town. There is another plaque to John Usher on a different street and it was not one I knew about on my Blue Plaque walk. He designed this building which has mythical beasts on pillars and the initials AH or HA above the top middle window. I must try and find out more about the building but I am guessing it was a shop or company building. The tally is now standing at 23 plaques that I know of and I expect there are some new ones I've missed...

Day 14

It was my brother's actual birthday on Sunday and both he and Mark came over for  a home cooked birthday dinner. I walked on both Saturday and Sunday 5 miles each walk. On Sunday I recce'd the walk I'll be leading on Thursday. Sunday's weather was damp and grey.

Hot and flushed on Sunday...

Country Casuals charity shopped jacket; Daycare Hospice shop, I think. Psychedelic print dress by New Look charity shopped about 5 years ago. OTK boots; my Barnardo's for 5.00. All jewellery charity shopped.

My outfit kept malfunctioning! The buttonholes on the sleeves of the dress kept coming undone; they have stretched, I think, so this dress will be re-donated. This was the first wearing of the boots and the heels crumbled throughout the day leaving deposits on the floor! OH thought at first it was chocolate. By the end of the day there were no heels on the boots at all. How very weird.

Day 15

I wore this to volunteer on Monday. Monday's are such busy days for me; I spend the evening with my feet up usually catching up with everyone's blogs.

Dress  by White Stuff and from my Barnardo's. All jewellery charity shopped. The brooch is my most recent acquisition from the 3:16 charity shop for 1.00.

Jacket; Barnardo's boiled wool jacket 1.00 rail.

Tan suede OTK boots online retail 3 years ago.

Next Friday, my Barnardo's is having a 'Everything 99p' day, so I shall be going back to see if I can get any bargains!

Day 15

I wore this to the food bank on Tuesday. It was milder but still damp and we had rain in the afternoon. The pinafore dress is by Tu retail in their sale a couple of years ago, shirt and kimono charity shopped.

Boots present from daughter.

All jewellery charity shopped.

And I'm going to finish with yet another dress which I've previously worn on the blog so I'm up to Day 16 of dresses worn...only 6 to go!

Day 16

Joe Brown dress bought in Co. Derry charity shop for 5 euros.


  1. I am so envious. I only own 6 dresses and most of those are now too big for me so I never wear them!

    1. You know what to look for the next time you're in a charity shop....

  2. I am really impressed that you're wearing all of your dresses, Vronni! You have some winners here. I love Desigual's dresses, but ugh, they have cheaped out in the last several years and don't put anything on the back! I loathe when the front is all embellished and decorated, but the back is black. So lazy! That dress is totally a knock-off of Desigual - we have a Vancouver company here (Papillon) that does Desigual lookalikes, and I've been fooled by them until I check the label.

    I love your leopard booties, your new necklace rack, that Boden dress and so many of these great outfits. Sorry to hear about the high blood pressure, but I think all your walking and swimming has definitely kept your health up! Sending good vibes for the grandson's surgery! What a beautiful blanket you made.

    Your crumbling bootheels reminds me that the same thing happened to a friend's shoes - the wedge heels were a foam composite (the shoes were from the late 90s-ish), and over time the plastic degraded and the heels disintegrated when she wore them! How's that for pushing one to more expensively-constructed shoes??

    Good luck with the rest of the dresses. Sorry for the rambling comment, lol. Have a great week!

    1. A rambling comment for a rambling post - sounds good to me Sheila and thank you!

  3. Loving all your great dresses! You know the Desiguals are my favourites, but the knock-off is great too! I've had shoes and boots fall apart but never piece by piece in the heel. How strange.

    Sorry to hear about your blood pressure. I'm joining you in starting mediation for mine. So far, I haven't had any lightheartedness or bothersome side effects. Hopefully you'll be able to take your medication and get it easily under control.

    Your blankets are seriously gorgeous.

    1. Thank you!
      The cobbler told me the heel had disintegrated from non wear! Perhaps the person who donated them wore them once (almost no wear on the soles) and then stored them for ages before I bought them from the charity shop.

      Anyway they're heeled now...

  4. Wow Vronni - you have some really interesting dresses. Lise

  5. Good for you for wearing all of your dresses. And in winter no less.

    I'm sorry to learn about your blood pressure. Last year I was admitted to hospital for high blood pressure which I've never had before. Now I take medication daily. It also runs in my family. Like you I have tried to avoid taking medication but they say that high blood pressure it too dangerous. It is crazy with all the walking and swimming you do that you still have high blood pressure.

    Bravo on finishing that blanket. It is lovely!


    1. Thank you Suzanne!

      Given the complications of high BP it is better to take the medication...

  6. I love the challenge you set yourself to wear all your dresses. I am doing a similar thing with my skirts, as I found myself taking the easy way out by wearing dresses all the time ;-) My favourite must be the White Stuff one with those fabulous OTK boots, but I'm loving your Desigual and Desigual rip-off dresses too. And the one with the Scottie dogs. Love your new jewellery rack, and your fabulous necklaces! Jos is taking medication for high blood pressure too, and has been for years without any problems, so I wouldn't be too upset about it. There's a lot worse! xxx P.S. Funny anecdote: I usually catch up with my blog reading during my commute, and I was so engrossed in your post this morning that I missed my stop :-)))

    1. Ooops! Sorry about that..

      Yes, I am ok taking the medication as the complications of high BP are awful.

      I really like the White Stuff dress too; could never afford to buy a new one!

  7. You're doing well with the challenge - I think I'd be the same, even though I wear dresses most of my life if I made myself only wear them I'd be craving something else.
    The Desiguals look great, also loving the mustard pinafore and the blue Boden. The jewellery rack is ingenious, I'm always fascinated by how other people store their stuff.
    What a score on the perfume. I had no idea it cost so much!
    The blanket is gorgeous. What a mare about your camera phone. Jon's got a generic smart phone and the camera on it is crap, like me he uses a camera.
    What a shock about your blood pressure. One of our friends had the same trouble but with medication and a few sensible dietry changes he's lost a stone and the doctor is happy.
    Have a fab week ahead. It's warm here but it isn't half dreary and depressing. xxx

    1. Thank you, Vix.

      I had a lovely digital camera which was a present from my daughter years ago, but since I've had a smart phone; which is quite a few years now, I stopped using the camera. When I did try to use it recently it had stopped working. I'm hoping my cousin's daughter's boyfriend might be able to fix it for me...

      It's the same weather here but there was a burst of sunshine this afternoon whilst I was out walking this afternoon!

  8. lovely challenge and I'm admiring all the beautiful dresses you own!, love all of them, those Desigual or desigual-style are some of my favourites (and the last one with the Scottie Dogs, I agree with Ann!). Love particularly your orange jacket and matchy tights outfit, sorry that your jacket resulted damaged. Also lovely green dress with plaid tights and tweed-like jacket. I actually love how you wear your dresses over leggings and/or trousers, the animal print dress over cords looked fabulous!
    Loving your accessorizing and loving your style!
    And hoping that your medication work without problems, perhaps you have to take it only for some time. Glad that you've been receiving a good medical care and having all the tests done!

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  10. your dress challenge runs very well!
    i love how you make the little dresses "winterfest" with leggings and pants and jackets - especially the camo sport leggings - how cool!
    i feel sorry for the high BP - so many women around me face this now, many short in their 50s - sometimes i think they lowered the critical numbers to sell more pills.....
    but your walkings and swimming sounds very sporty and healthy! i was yesterday in the woods&rocks - but by leaving the bus i had to change the initial route as the forest was widely closed due to hunting....and my wanderung turned out much more long and challenging than planned.... still could hear the shooting...

    1. I think you are spot on, Beate. When I was a student nurse and a nurse teacher in the 1970s and 1980s; we used the formula of patient's age + 100 over two thirds of that total figure, as a guide to healthy BP. But as the nurse and the doctor informed me the protocol has changed....

      I'm sorry your walk was made longer by the shooting going on in the woods - I hate hunters...

      Have a great weekend.

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  12. Yay to the Christmas lunch, Vronni, that was a cliffhanger!!

    I love this challenge you've set yourself and it's got you to show us your amazing collection of dresses. More challenges please!

    Hugs, Mary x.

    1. Yes, I do like a challenge, Mary. I must put my thinking cap on...


  13. Hoorah for getting to go to the lunch after all! That's goods news.

    You do have a lot of necklaces, but then I always automatically think of you whenever I see a splendid statement necklace nowadays - like the headscarves, they're part of your style. You definitely get plenty of pleasure out of them, so why not have lots?

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  15. I wear dresses all the time but I'm not sure I could do it if I knew I couldn't wear jeans if the fancy took me, well done for keeping it up.

    The crumbling heels thing, I bet they were boots from the 90's I have had several pairs of 90's shoes and boots do the same thing. Heartbreaking as I loved them.

    1. I don't know how old the boots were, Gisela, but it's something I'd never experienced before; or even heard of and found it very peculiar!

  16. Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to all your posts! Keep up the superb work. Get dress24 desigual for kids and girls clothing at jaamino online shopping mall is the greatest online shopping store in the UK.


Lost earrings, birthday and some sad news.

Hello!  This was me in my walking outfit on Wednesday; plus waterproof coat, scarf and gloves. It was both a wet and cold day.  I'd put ...