Saturday, January 19, 2008

I lied…

… about not even considering buying a new outfit for the RNA do.

Woke up this morning and remembered the old mantra: when the going gets tough, the tough go shopping.

The going right now is very tough and it’s not looking as if things will get better in the near future – if anything, quite the reverse. (Am not blogging about it from now on out of respect from my dad– but if I don’t say ‘good day at hospital’ you’ll know it’s been horrible.)

So although I should have been working, I went shopping.

The idea was just to pick up a new top to go with my black crochet shrug and velvet skirt. Except I’d been browsing on the net and discovered an outfit I liked – and the shop has an outlet in a certain department store in Norwich where I do book signings but don’t normally go clothes shopping. (We’re talking Ghost, Jacques Vert, Viyella and the like. The sort of stuff I would have worn in my rat race days but is a bit OTT for working at home and sharing lunch with the dog.)

And as they had it in my size… and in the sale… and it meant a saving of over £100 (we don’t mention how much I actually spent *g*)… I had to buy it, didn’t I?

I’ve gone retro – i.e. back to the kind of stuff I wore in my 20s. Which means an ankle-length floaty skirt (I have nice ankles), a vest-type top (not strappy) and a floaty shirt (georgette) used as a jacket. Strong colours. If I lose a stone or so this year it’s still going to look good. I have a special wedding coming up in March and needed an outfit for that, and this works for both.

AND - this is the bit people who know me personally are not going to believe - I also bought shoes.

I was browsing in the shoe-shop when one of my friends walked in (her husband had texted DH to say they were in the city and let's meet up for lunch, so DH told them where I was). Excellent, as it meant I had a second opinion on the outfit and help to find the right shoes. It took us all of two shops – and we both dived for a shoe on display. Different shelves, same shoe :o) And it was the perfect fit. Sorted. The man in the shoe shop said, ‘We sell lovely handbags to go with the shoes.’ I smiled and explained, ‘I’m a Radley girl.’ He laughed and said in that case he wouldn’t dare show me any bags.

Hmm. I need that new Radley bag, don’t I?

Anyway. Said shoes are really not what I would normally buy. They’re pretty. Very girly. And TASTEFUL. Slingbacks, high heels, pointy toes, very low sides, bow and diamante. (Tasteful diamante. Just a teensy accent, enough to look pretty but not enough to look tacky.) On the way back to the car, I saw a pair I liked in Hobbs… but I have big feet and Hobbs is for dainty people, and… Look, you just can’t do the school run or walk the dog in those sort of shoes. Not unless you want bunions and blisters.

So. In two weeks’ time I’m going to London with a really posh outfit and nice shoes. And I am going to enjoy it. Just for an afternoon, real life is going to be good.

PS – question for the style queens out there. Do I have to match my lipstick to my nail varnish, or can I have nail varnish to match my outfit and lipstick in a more subtle colour?


Jan Jones said...

((((Hugs)))) for the tough stuff, yippees for the nice new clothes. I think selective accounts-blindness is called for on these occasions.

Liz Fielding said...

Rats. I was going to wear my standard "bit of a do" outfit. Nothing new.

Your outfit sounds so gorgeous that I'm wavering...

Hugs on the bad days.

Kate Hardy said...

Jan - thanks. And I made it a tad worse by purchasing something else this morning... Still, if you're going to do retail therapy, you might as well go the whole hog, yes?

Liz - you'll look stunning as you always do. And thanks for the hugs.

Christina Phillips said...

Kate, huge congrats on being shortlisted for the RNA Romance prize!

Julie Cohen said...

Wonderful! Can't wait to see it. I'm going shopping, too.

Your nails and lips don't have to match. I remember the lovely Nell Dixon last year when she won the Romance Priz, she had a blue outfit with gorgeous blue nails. Not blue lipstick, luckily.

Nell said...

Yes, I had blue nails to match the trim on my jacket - pale frosty blue.

Natasha said...

Absolutely need a new Radley bag. You have to! It's your signature piece. And we all hate you for it!!! :)