Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Mid-September Looks

 It is officially Autumn in the Northern hemisphere, but you wouldn't know it by our weather in Omaha. Up and down seems to be the rule this time of year, but I know by month's end we'll be wrapped in woolens. Might as well make the best of it while we can.

I do love wearing bright colours. My husband mentioned that on the hanger, this dress didn't look all that interesting-and he was right. What sold me wasn't the colours or the fabric, but the long length and wide sweep of the skirt. I knew with a fitted jacket it would make for an interesting line, and with a bit of luck make me look taller in the process.
 Of course having a perfectly matching purse did make the dress all that more attractive a purchase!
Outfit Particulars:
Vintage jacket (has a matching sheath dress)-Thrift World
Betsey Johnson purse-Dillard's
Green enamel clamper bracelets-both Target years ago
Lucite bangle-Goodwill
Earrings-New Life Thrift

If I'm looking smug and pleased with myself it is because I'm generally a smug and pleased with myself sort of woman I have been getting myself organised after five years in this house. After the books and clothing cull, I had a better opportunity to arrange things in a way I like. Oh don't worry, I haven't gone minimalist or anything mad like that.
Just better organised. The brooch boards were such a success, I thought I'd put the rings together in one place. I've also been sick (a LOT) lately (and am now AGAIN running a fever on the heels of the last illness) and this sort of task is a good thing to do sitting in bed. Hopefully, I'm getting all the viruses out of the way before winter. I have no idea what's going on with my immune system, but this is very unusual for me.
 This jacket has a lovely matching dress, but I wanted to wear my vintage Vera maxi skirt before the weather turned too cold. It is a funny crepe-like material that has a slight flocking on it. I can't say I've ever seen anything quite like it.
Outfit Particulars:
1970's jacket-Goodwill
Vera 70s maxi skirt-Goodwill
Vintage handbag-Goodwill
Shoes-K Mart
Mexican silver bracelet-Goodwill
Sara Coventry silver bracelet-Goodwill
Vintage silver belt-New Life Thrift
Earrings- K Mart

 Staying with blue for a moment, I wore my treasured antique textile/modern caftan.
 When I purchased this in the 80s I paid what I thought was a crazy amount of money for old Afghan textiles reworked into a modern item of clothing. A quick look online tells me I made a very good purchase after all, as now the modern part of the dress is vintage as well. There's still bits of mirror and glass in the embroidery on the bodice and cuffs. I don't wear it often, but I never fail to feel wonderful when I do. Every wardrobe needs a piece that can lift your spirits-I'm just glad my younger self had the wisdom to buy it 35 years ago. Thanks, younger self! The necklace of polished semi-precious stones was my mum's.
Outfit Particulars:
Caftan-purchased at an artist's studio in Evanston Illinois, early 80's
Earrings-K Mart
Vintage sandals-Goodwill

Double tartan! They're both extremely lightweight, the skirt being cotton and the top a lightweight rayon. Both pieces are 80s, and the top has a self-scarf that can also be worn draped over the shoulders, Outlander style. I absolutely hate it! No matter which way I tie the bloody thing it looks awkward and then due to the slippery fabric fails to stay in place. When I rule the world I'm going to bring back the stocks for people that design such fiddly clothes. I do concede it looks good in photographs.

Outfit Particulars:
1980's skirt-Goodwill
1980s blouse-Thrift World
Brooch-Can't remember
Vintage handbag-Thrift World

 Now that somewhat cooler temperatures have arrived, I've been cooking and baking more. The doughnuts above didn't photograph well, but they were delicious. I made a reduction of apple cider (the non-alcoholic sort known as cloudy apple juice outside the US) and used it to flavour the dough. They're partly made with wholemeal flour which gives such a lovely nutty flavour. The white ones are tossed in plain sugar, the darker ones cinnamon sugar. I will be making more of these for the freezer while apple cider is in season (about another month or so).
It wouldn't be autumn without plum kuchen. This is such an easy bake. I can have one of these ready in 35 minutes, start to finish. But not everything is fun in the kitchen. May I share a secret with you? I can't make potato dumplings. My bread dumplings aren't very good either. My husband enjoys that sort of thing having lived in Germany in the 60's he developed a taste for them. Sigh. What can I say, potato dumplings are my Achilles heel. I am not a bad cook but...anyway, much to my shame I bought a box of these...
 *shakes head* The dehydrated potatoes come in a gauze bag you bring to a boil in a pot of water.
...and then they puff up and form dumplings. How were they? Better than anything I've ever managed to make in the 25 years I've been with my husband. Danny enjoyed them as well. A quick look at the ingredients indicated plenty of items you wouldn't normally find in a dumpling (dyes, preservatives, etc) but for a once-a-year sort of treat, I'd buy these again. I'm sure nothing can measure up to childhood memory, but I suspect the school dinners he remembers probably involved dumpling mixes as well. Though my father in law was in the army, they chose to live in town so my husband and sister in law could get an immersive education. My sister in law made use of the opportunity and learned to speak German. My husband made friends with the local trouble makers and learned to play, "Rock Fight." As far as I can tell, it is pretty much what it sounds like. When I was a kid we'd throw crab apples at each other, but even in Chicago it never rose to the level of rocks! But anyway, now he can at least relive the dumplings without fear of injury.

 Halloween is coming! As someone that wasn't permitted candy (or much food, generally speaking) as a child, the idea of ringing doorbells, holding out a bag, and being given free candy has always appealed to me. It still does, though these day we keep some non-food treats on hand for allergic children. When you dress like I do, the costume bit seems like just another day, however I do love the Halloween specific clothing in the stores. These glow in the dark! I mean, really glow enough to see your way through a dark hallway to the toilet at 3 AM. I found these at Target in the children's department (their kids stuff runs large, but keep in mind I am quite short). I am looking forward to wearing these out at night. I always bake a Barmbrack at Halloween, but other than that we just sit here with a big bowl of candy and wait for trick or treaters. Last year was grim-we only had five. Because we live on a college campus I suspect neighbouhood children don't bother coming through as they don't know there are townhomes here as well as the student dormitories.

 I will leave you with one last warm-weather outfit as we head into the end of September.
 The embroidered details on this dress are so pretty, I just wish it didn't make my boobs look quite so ample. I don't mind them, I just don't like it to be the first thing someone notices about me.
Outfit Particulars:
Bangles-all over
Vintage beaded bag-Goodwill
Earrings-Thrift World

When I see you next, I have some outfits from the cooler days including the first corduroy of the year. I hope you're as excited as I am.

See you later, and don't judge me for the dumplings­čśü


bahnw├Ąrterin said...

i´m swooning over your outfits!
@dumplings - i use convenience too - and that with a silesian granny who was the dumpling queen.... but i find it to much work with all the potato preparing etc.. here we have many products of that sorts - even in bio/eco-qualitiy without nasty stuff in it :-)

Bibi Maizoon said...

I've heard from my pharmacy friends in the US some double whammy super nasty upper respiratory thing is going around- take care & make sure it doesn't turn to pneumonia!

I was just going to say as far as dumplings (and spaetzle goes) - USE THE PACKAGE MIXES! They're good & sooo much easier. I make Dutch style thick egg noodles from scratch but that is it.

That fuchsia, ultraviolet, & mucky green(?) dress is just divine- both in cut and color, love the bright green jacket with it!
The Vera skirt is gorgeous- I had a sheet & comforter set in the 70's with a similar print.
The antique Afghani/modern dress is so perfect for Fall.
That red sundress is amazing & looks so perfect on you! The details & the way it fits looks like it was tailor-made just for you! Red always looks so fab on you.

Wish we had plums here ;)

Vix said...

What a treat those outfits are! I'm swooning over the Afghan dress (a sound investment), that first dress - gorgeous cut and that gorgeous blue maxi skirt.
I've never eaten a dumpling in my life - I always associate them with those British suet monstrosities and have never tried one! xxx

Polyester Princess said...

Sorry to hear you've been unwell, and I hope you see the end of whatever's going round very soon. Sending healing vibes from Belgium in the meantime! The weather's been up and down here too, it's hard to know what to wear, as it's chilly in the morning, so I'm wearing layers for as long as I can. That first dress looks fabulous on you, especially combined with the green jacket, and yes, it does make you look tall. My favourites are the Vera maxi skirt - what a fabulous print! - and the kaftan. Your younger self was very clever indeed. I'm hearing you on the self-scarf issue. They can be quite pesky. Love the ring storage! xxx

Se├▒ora Allnut said...

such fabulous outfits!, It's difficult to pick a favorite, I love the fuchsia dress, the stunning Vera maxi, the kaftan, the double-tartan outfit! love all of them actually!
Sorry to hear that you were sick, wish you feel good asap! At least you could organize your fabulous bijouterie! (you know, you're my master now!, looking at your rings collection put a smile on my face!)
Dumplings are a total mistery for me, I enjoyed them when visited Praha and Budapest, but never tried to make them at home!
On the other hand, cooking some plum cakes look like a fantastic idea these days!

Sue said...

I LOVE the colour combo in photo one, I so get the bright colour thing. Our weather is all over the place down here too. Spring is springing for sure. We have had a cold snap so the summery things have been put on hold. Oh the boob issue I know so well, I think it is the cross over part top tops that makes the girls look even more impressive!!!

Vronni's Style Meanderings said...

The dress in the first photo is gorgeous and as for pairing it with that green top I would never have thought of that - it looks amazing! And the sweet little mouse brooch - aaah!

I loved your unusual blue maxi skirt and that lovely vintage Kaftan and the plaid items and the embroidered dress was just so pretty. Amazing bangles and bags, too.

The weather has been so good here as well but it can't last...

I make West Indian dumplings for my soup sometimes but I have to confess I don't like them - too chewy. Give me a nice doughy, suet dumpling anytime. I've never tried a potato dumpling but I have had Chinese dumplings filled with a spicy pork mince which were delicious.

I rarely get Trick or Treaters either as we live on a main road. I don't care! More sweets for me!

Have a great weekend.

Vronni's Style Meanderings said...

PS - love the ring board - a brilliant idea. You can see them all at once.

Mrs Rat said...

I'm glad that I bookmarked your blog before I left Instagram because I really enjoy following along with your outfit, thrifting, and cooking/baking adventures and experiments. Now I won't miss out on any of the exciting surprises of your amazing jewelry and handbag collections.

Hope you're feeling better soon. My husband and I have been sick a few times recently too.... I think there are some bad viruses going around this year.

Goody said...

I'm relieved to know you buy dumpling mix too ;)

I tried making spaetzel once-pushing dough through a colander. Madness. Now that allergies aren't a concern I rarely make any sort of noodles. I wish I could send you plums-this has been a good year for a change.

I have some Atora (I'm the only vegetarian in the family)but you couldn't pay me to try making suet dumplings. Potato dumplings are a bit chewy and sticky from the potato starch. *shudder*

Thank you for the well wishes. I am mostly recovered, and I am praying Mr. ETB doesn't get it next. I am trying to get organised as much as possible now, and it does make getting dressed quicker and easier now that the school year is back in session.

@Senora Allnut
Thank you. I am flattered that you like my accessories as I have been admiring yours foe a long time. You are artistic, which is something I am not.

I was thinking I shouldn't wear anything that wraps tightly but...I am such a sucker for good embroidery. I hope your wet spring brings a million beautiful summer flowers.

West Indian dumplings sound interesting. Isn't it amazing how so many cultures around the world hit on a similar idea? I haven't bought any candy yet, but I am going to buy some stickers, pencils, and other fun things for the kids that can't have candy. I remember what a drag it was for Danny.

@Mrs. Rat
I am so glad to hear from you! I understand why Instagram can be unpleasant, and why you had enough. I hope you and Mr. Rat are feeling better soon.

Mim said...

Hoorah, the telephone purse makes a return. And those maxi-skirted styles look amazing on you.

Sorry to hear you've been ill again. You've had a rough time of late. Here's hoping that you're just getting out of the way early for the rest of the winter.

I've only ever had kartoffelknoedel once, in Germany, and I wasn't entirely a fan. I can't make yeast-based dumplings, but my British ones (suet, self-raising flour and water) are fab, so I'm thinking of trying putting my favourite Chinese dumpling fillings into British dumpling dough for a bit of con-fusion cuisine.

Radostin said...

So many wonderful outfits! The Afghan dress is an absolute knock-out. I love the colours of that first free, especially with the shocking-green jacket. The Vera skirt is eye-wideningly-good, too. I am most impressed to learn that there is anything at all you can't make, good for you. Sending love. Jessie.