Another holding post while I continue my Doctor Who phone box hunt. This distorted-looking phone box will regain its proper shape once it’s out of the wardrobe…
It’s part of the design of my ‘Oh London!’ skirt (shown here as part of my outfit for New Year’s Day 2019). I haven’t worn it – or any skirt, come to think of it – for well over a year.
I’m not sure how ‘dressed up’ I will get for post-pandemic events, because at the moment, after a year of leggings and loungewear, the idea of wearing clothes like that seems a bit alien and terrifying. Still, I do love my phone box skirt, so hopefully in the future it will be allowed out from the wardrobe again.
Like most people, I’ve had no reason to get dressed up for anything over the course of the last year. I’ve been living in a uniform of leggings and jumpers for months and months now.
While this means my ’80s vintage jumper collection is seeing a lot of wear – and that I’ve recently amassed a fairly considerable quantity of brightly coloured modern-day leggings – there are other parts of my wardrobe that must be feeling a bit neglected at the moment. I put all of my jeans in a storage box the other day because I’ve simply not worn them since last March. As for my ’80s vintage dresses… well…
I love these dresses but I’ve probably not worn them since summer 2019. They belong to a world where summer events regularly take place, and at the moment that world might as well be a fantasy.
It’ll come true again some day, though, and the nice thing about wearing vintage is that it doesn’t go out of style (because technically it already has been out of style for decades), so I know that when those summer barbecues and weddings and the like return, this part of my wardrobe will see the light of day again.
A slight diversion on a usual running route today…
…which made it a three-mile-plus run. Always good to get the extra distance in.
I’ve been feeling like my personal fashion style has changed again recently. When I reached my target weight in 2018 and had to buy a whole new wardrobe as a result, I went for a mixture of timeless investment pieces, which I knew would last me for life if I took care of them, and fun vintage finds, which satisfied my obsession with ’80s fashion.
I have not worn any of that stuff in months. My lifestyle, even before the lockdown, has shifted to that of a sort of active homebody – I get up in the morning and change into running gear, and after my run I go for my shower and then throw on a comfy leggings/t-shirt/jumper combo, because I know I’m going to be spending the rest of the day either on the sofa, doing housework, or doing a bit of yoga or Pilates. The numerous pairs of good quality jeans I bought two years ago are not comfy or casual enough for a spontaneous yoga session. My vintage ’80s stuff, other than my well-loved collection of cosy winter jumpers, is too fancy for lounging around the house. I have not worn shoes other than running shoes for over a month: I have two pairs in rotation for actual running, and one ancient pair that I use for going out to the garage or garden.
Even pre-lockdown, I rarely had anything to go to that required dressing up – nobody minds what you wear to Slimming World or ukulele class, and even poetry night is far from a formal affair. This year, I have only been out of leggings a handful of times – New Year’s Day, the LeBrock gig, a couple of family meals in February… and I think that’s about it. Most of my leggings cost £2 from Primark, but they’re getting a LOT more wear than the £50 jeans hanging in my wardrobe.
I’m not about to get rid of what I bought in 2018 – there may come a time when I’m interacting with the world on a regular enough basis that I might make the effort to wear something with actual fastenings again, although I expect it will be a slow road out of lockdown for me personally seeing as I’m appreciating the peace and quiet so much – but I don’t see myself buying any more investment pieces or filling up my bag at vintage fairs again for a good couple of years at least.
I may start spending slightly more than £2 on leggings though, seeing as they’ve been so good to me recently.
Today’s earworm playlist:
Hiroki Morishita – ‘Just Across This Mountain And We’ll Arrive Soon’ Nina Nesbitt – ‘Stay Out’ Nobuo Uematsu – ‘On Our Way’ Cast of The Muppet Christmas Carol – ‘It Feels Like Christmas’ Red Hot Chili Peppers – ‘Road Trippin” Duran Duran – ‘A View To A Kill’ Gordon Duncan – ‘Sleeping Tune’*
For various reasons I haven’t been able to get to a vintage fair for a couple of months, but today I finally had the opportunity again! Judy’s Affordable Vintage Fair was on at the Boiler Room in Newcastle, so I headed down to see if I could find a few things on my list.
I found the denim jacket I’d been looking for – I’m looking forward to customising it with my badge collection when I have some time (so 2021 maybe? 2022?) – plus a couple more cosy ’80s jumpers for the winter (only £10 each!). My work-from-home uniform at the moment tends to be leggings plus oversized vintage jumper, so I wanted to grab a few more. I’ve also been having a think about selling some of the clothes I never wear (both to make some space in my wardrobe and to make a bit of extra cash), so I’m going to be investigating sites like Etsy to see if setting up a small online shop would be worthwhile.
There’s a lot more vintage fairs on over the next couple of months, so maybe I’ll be able to squeeze in one or two more before the end of 2019!
As I may have mentioned once or twice this week, today I was able to go to a vintage fair for the first time since February! It was nice to walk through the doors of the Civic Centre again, hear the ’50s pastiche performers singing and look wistfully at all the delicious cake that I never have enough syns left over for.
I just bought one piece today, as I’m still sticking to my clothes shopping limit for 2019 after the post-weight-loss-free-for-all that was 2018. It’s something I’ve been looking for at the last few fairs but not managed to find until now – a comfy casual ’80s day dress. This one is perfect for winter as it’s made out of wool and sequins and looks like an ’80s jumper…except it’s a dress!
(The lady at the stall asked if I was going to take the shoulder pads out. Uh, NO.)
I also priced the denim jackets that were available, as that’s going to be my purchase at the next vintage fair – I’m looking for a good quality vintage jacket (preferably in stonewashed denim for that late ’80s vibe). The stalls today had all sorts available – some repurposed with designs on the back, some sold as original – so I expect there’ll be a similarly good selection at the next fair. Which is next weekend! I’m excited already.
There were two vintage fairs going on in town today – there was also a kilo sale going on at Northumbria SU – but as I’m limiting myself to just one or two pieces per vintage fair day at the moment, I thought it’d be a bit of a waste to go to the kilo sale, so I stuck to Lou Lou’s at the Civic Centre. One piece only today – adding to my vintage ’80s jumper collection!
It’s a good time of year for vintage fairs, so I should be able to collect a few more jumpers and other things over the next couple of months!
First vintage fair of the year! I’m restricting myself to no more than two items per fair in 2019, as I bought lots of clothes last year. This meant that today I only bought the things that really caught my eye.
I bought another jumper, ’cause I’m wearing my ’80s jumpers a lot at the moment and I feel like I’m cycling through the same three or four all the time. I also bought this pretty black top with flower embellishments on the shoulders and chain detailing on the neck. It’ll be lovely to wear with a black skirt for a special occasion! Or just round the house if I get bored of jumpers.
The Street Food Market is a fairlyregular event put on by Judy’s Vintage Fairs. I didn’t have any of the food, because (a) all the food vans were outside in the cold and rain, and (b) they were all selling savoury stuff like pizza, and while I could have done with a cupcake or something similar, I’d already had my lunch so couldn’t justify pizza. I’ll maybe venture out next time they do one in the summer.
Vintage fairs are back for the autumn/winter! There’s another one I’m planning to go to next month, by which point I may no longer be strong/warm enough to resist the lure of vintage ’80s jumpers. I have plenty. I still want more.
I was sensible today, though, and didn’t buy any jumpers for now. Instead, I picked up two things I’d actually been visualising: a red blouse to go with one of this year’s Christmas outfits, and a jersey dress that will be nice and comfortable for ’round the house’ days, which, for a work-from-home type like me, is most days.
It’s very satisfying to be able to add a piece here and there to my vintage collection. Looking forward to wearing both of these!
By the post title, I mean deliberately getting back into one, and trying not to get back into another!
The good one is reading. As a child I was a voracious reader and the only time I didn’t have my nose in a book was when I was writing my own stories. Then I grew up and the internet happened, and I went to university where I had to read nonfiction books for research all day long, and so my reading habits shifted from novels to blogs and forums, and my fiction-consuming habits shifted almost solely to TV shows and videogames. I’ve never really fully got back into the habit of reading books, although I do make a concerted effort every few months – I’m fully aware that my own writing improves when I read actual published works rather than stuff on the internet, interesting as a lot of stuff on the internet is. As such, for the last couple of weeks – ever since we got access to our books – I’ve been reading for an hour before bed. Also, I got a Kindle for Christmas, and in the last week or so I’ve been filling it up with ebooks to read while I’m on holiday. I’m looking forward to having some time for that again.
The bad habit – which I indulged in today but am not intending to repeat – is buying mounds of cheap clothing in Primark. Since my wardrobe cull, it’s been very important to me that I don’t end up replacing the mounds of cheap and unwearable clothes with more mounds of cheap and unwearable clothes, and so the clothes I’ve been buying so far this year have been better quality investment pieces that I know will get lots of wear. I realised that I don’t have enough lightweight summer clothes for my upcoming holiday though – in the UK climate you don’t usually need a lot of summer clothes, although the ones I do own have been seeing a lot of use during the heatwave we’ve been having for the last few weeks – and so I did break my Primark ban this morning. I don’t expect the clothes will last long, but I know I’ll get a lot of use out of them this summer – and that I now have the de-hoarding mental strength to get rid of them when they do wear out, which is the important thing.
I’m nearly getting to the point where I have enough clothes again. Not quite, but nearly!
(Books, on the other hand, I have far too many of – hence the Kindle, to make sure I don’t buy any more physical ones.)
One of the things on my (very long) list of stuff I wanted to buy when I reached my Slimming World target was a good, well-fitting pair of jeans. In the last two weeks, I have bought four pairs, and have my eye on a few more. I had forgotten how comfortable they are when they fit properly.
I did have a couple of pairs of jeans when I was bigger, but they were always uncomfortable. Because of my endless yo-yo dieting they were rarely the right side for me, and even when they were, they would still dig uncomfortably into my middle whenever I was sitting down, which was most of the time. I think this was largely because up until a couple of years ago, jeans were still uniformly low-rise, and so they hit at a really uncomfortable place for me.
The return of high-rise waists suits me a lot better, in terms of both comfort and style (they look more ’80s. Everything is better when it looks more ’80s).
I am now learning about all the different styles you can buy at the moment – skinny, super skinny, slim leg, straight leg, mom jeans, boyfriend jeans, the list goes on. This is an exciting new world! I am not about to let it get to the levels of my shoe obsession, but I am really glad to be done with the phase of my life that involved wearing leggings every single day.