frugal fashion shopper

Is age just another number?

‘Tis the season to dress up and clear out the clutter!

I’m better now than before, but it was quite fluey (the bug we had) so I’m not going out to a New Year’s Eve party.

Yes, still not quite myself, a bit post-viral and the stye is better but lingering, so don’t feel very sociable. And I haven’t hit the shops for ages, not even the sales, gosh what a drag. But, looking on the bright side I’ve booked my next cruise, which will be in August of 2015. It’s to the Faroe and Shetland Isles – I do love the north! And you might remember that I took too many clothes for the last cruise? This time I’m determined to take a capsule wardrobe with co-ordinated colours – I’ll keep you posted about that.

Anyway, I am going to do two things. First, on New Year’s Eve, despite us seeing no-one, I shall wear something with sequins – probably this top – with my jeans.


Sequins are definitely in – are they ever out? Jess Cartner-Morley wore them at some point during her week (and I agree with the below-line commenter that I wish she would stop posing for the camera with her feet in that pigeon-toed stance).  And the Guardian’s latest Gallery features the top 10 sequinned clothes.

I personally like the midi-skirt in the Gallery, which I would have bought like a shot when working, but not now, even though it’s at a reasonable High Street price of £75.   Instead I’ll be looking for a bargain in the charity shops. And Alice Fisher’s take on New Year’s Eve clothes includes a lovely sequined top – I agree with her – I shall make an effort even though I’m staying in.

Second, I’m going to have a big throw-out. I regularly de-clutter but this is an end-of-year appraisal. And I am ruthless about this. I ask myself, ‘has this garment been worn?’ No, then why keep it? I also ask, ‘was this a mistake?’ Yes, then again, why am I keeping it?

There are hardly any clothes left over from my working life (I’m talking about clothes that cost a great deal) so it really doesn’t matter too much if the clothes are discarded because they are unworn – a mistake that cost £3 is OK in my book.

I sometimes hear people say but I can’t throw this out because, not only did it cost a lot, it’s such good quality, surely it’s worth keeping? Yes, but I think not only why aren’t you wearing it, but does it look good on you, now, today, this minute? And I’m not asking people to think of fashion or being fashionable, heaven forfend. But there is something about the current look of the day. I would say, how do you adapt that current look, not to be on trend but just to make yourself stylish – stylish, that is the key word. Because we do adapt to the fashion of the day even if we don’t want to admit it – just go into any vintage store and try on an 80s style dress – personally I go yuk, no way, every time!!!

So, chuck out the chintz, or whatever is of good quality, but unworn, although you think it might be one day. Send it to the charity shop or the thrift store and someone else looking for a bargain will benefit – and even more important a charity will profit from your de-cluttering. It’s a win-win all round.

That’s all for now

A very Happy New Year to you all

With love, Penny, the frugalfashionshopper


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‘Tis the season to be jolly!

But difficult if you’ve got a cold!

When I say I’m a winter person (because I so love the clothes that you wear in the colder weather) I forget that it’s also the season of coughs and colds. And boy, did I get a cold!   And just before Christmas when we’re all expected to be sociable. In fact, the cold was so bad I couldn’t join in with my family’s get-together at my daughter’s on Christmas Day.

I sent Mr Frugal Fashion Shopper off with all the Christmas food we’d made and sat at home croaking, coughing and snorting throughout the day. On one level, I almost enjoyed myself. I did exactly what I wanted when I wanted. I ate when I was hungry and didn’t over eat because the plate was exactly to my liking and size – hate that Christmas overeating. And then I read a book for hours on end – wonderful. On the other hand, it did feel odd eating on my own. Anyway, I’m on the mend but Mr Frugal Fashion Shopper is poorly now.

That’s the way it’s been throughout December because alongside the cold my eyes have been playing up. I suffer from blepharitis, a condition of the eyelids that’s really common as we age – hmmm!   As it’s a chronic condition I usually keep it all under control with scrupulous cleansing (with the special cleaners) and hot cloths to the face and eyelids. But it flares up when you’re under stress and/or have a virus. As things have been a bit hectic during December the condition started to play up and then blew up good and proper when I get the cold – and then I get styes.  One’s coming to fruition right now ……

So the result of all this is that I haven’t been wearing my contact lenses and eye makeup for around a month. Now you might think, OK, there’s a lot worse that could happen, and, of course, that’s so true. But the person I am, or think I am, is a person who wears eye makeup and no glasses – so I haven’t been me for nearly a month.

I know that I wear slightly more makeup than most people my age but I’ve been putting on the slap since I was 15, and I’ll carry on wearing makeup into my very old age – why ever not. However, I do wear Tricia Cusden’s Look Fabulous Forever foundation, some lippy and don’t forget the eyebrows. I get these professionally dyed in a salon and the definition from these darker eyebrows (they’re a pale gingery white now) makes all the difference.

But do tell me, do you feel slightly out of kilter if you don’t wear makeup?   Or, is makeup something you can take or leave?   Or, is it something you don’t wear now because you are getting just a bit older. Actually, if it’s the latter do watch some of Tricia Cusden’s tutorials on makeup and the older woman – I hope they change your mind!

That’s all for now.  I’ll be back soon with some sparkling outfits for the New Year!

With love

Penny, the frugalfashionshopper


It’s almost Christmas and I’m not nearly ready for it!

Hello again.

I’m back after 16 days away from the blog. I’ve been incredibly busy helping my son to move, and as he’s always rented furnished flats there were two trips to Ikea to buy him some essential stuff like a bed. Phew, what an effort! For those of you reading this who don’t have Ikea selling in your country, Ikea’s a great store, and amazingly cheap. But the drawback is that you see a lovely wardrobe, bed and/or settee, you order it, then it arrives in 50 different flat-pack bits. Ten days after delivery he’s still making his furniture.

How are things with everyone? The consequence of the move and the trips to Ikea is that no way am I ready for Christmas.   Cards not done and cake not made *sighs*

But I did manage to take five minutes to buy a great winter party outfit in a nearby town. This grey/green tulle skirt has a lovely mid-calf length. And in the same shop, I managed to find a green top and a woolly (almost 80s, therefore vintage in some people’s eyes) jumper to wear with it, as it’s quite chilly here now (albeit not as cold as some countries like the States).


I guess because of the weather Jess Cartner Morley extols the virtues of wearing party dresses with sleeves, and I must say that it seems a bit odd to sell sleeveless party dresses at this time of the year. OK, sleeves are good for us as we age – but it’s just good sense to wear a sleeved dress in the winter.  On t’other hand, it may be that I forget that my younger self didn’t feel the cold the way I do now!

Yes, although I love winter and the clothes that go with the season – tweed skirts and jackets, woolly jumpers, hats and scarves – I do feel the cold, and I’m wearing three layers as I write even though the heating is on. But whether I can bear to wear a Christmas jumper is another matter – here’s a link to some comical Christmas jumpers. Will you be wearing one this winter?

That’s all for now, but do let me know if you’ve found a warm party dress!

With love

Penny, the frugalfashionshopper



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