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Monday, 28 November 2011

Stilettos V pumpkin soup

So since writing my first blog there have been not one, but two occasions to don my stilettos. My initial reaction - hooray! My BFF's birthday party and my BBF's wedding respectively and two very different occasions indeed.
I've always loved a full social diary but each invite came with it's own sartorial dilemma. Firstly my best friend Rosie's birthday. Now for this occassion there had been talk of cocktail bars, posh nosh restaurants, acoustic sets, and dancing til dawn but when it came down to the finalities of the plans it turned out that we would be having a curry at Rosie’s, cooked by her dad, followed by a jaunt to the local pub which is in no uncertain terms a little bit of a dive. To make matters even worse, I am Rosie's only non-student friend. She, having just graduated in graphics & illustration from her third university course, at the grand age of 26, is a bonified clothes horse of thrown together, just got out of bed but ready to rock the party all night student-esque style. So there I am, stood in front of my wardrobe, clothes piled up around me, wondering which outfit, if any, is suitable for this occasion. I try on numerous dresses, jeans, tops and accessories. I add belts, then take them off again. I want desperately to wear my blue suede stilettos but have the erksome worry that I will be the only one in heels and look over dressed. Approximately one hour later I am leaving Daisy Cottage, late, wearing the blue suede stilettos with the silver heels that I can barely walk in, but whatever they look hot, right? So I am wearing my Reiss Tiana dress, a wardrobe staple, my skinny snake skin belt which contrasts with the print and  have my Mulberry clutch under one arm, well what else? I also have a ‘No Guts No Glory’ bag full of gifts for the my lovely friend, containing amongst other delights the iconic Essie nail polish in ‘Turquoise and Caicos.
On arrival I greet both Rosie’s ma and pa and head down to the basement where the party is in full swing. A canapay has been put up so everyone is grouped around in the garden just off the basement. Someone has an acoustic guitar and there are candles placed around the rockery. A fragrant smell of curry and lots of chatter, the atmosphere is cute and Rosie’s other chums are nice as pie, greeting me with hugs and kisses all round. Still, amid this lovely atmosphere something is bothering me - yep, I am most definitely the only girl in this house wearing stilettos and, eek, another sartorial thunder bolt, a dress! To be honest this didn’t come as a surprise at all..I mean I could have worn skinny jeans and a printed t shirt to fit in but hey, the times a girl gets to dress up are limited so what the hell. Another eeksome moment arrives when it is established that we will, gasp, walk to the pub! Help! I can barley stand let alone walk! Sure enough this was salvaged when Rosie’s brother Ed hoists me up and carries me pretty much the whole way, phew. So the night gos on and we head from one not so great venue to a rather more tragic one. A band is playing in the pub and we must dance so the stilettos come off and I hold them like most prized posescions in my hands, whilst bopping away to some wannabe rock band. The blue suede ones received more compliments in the air than they ever did on my feet, I wonder if we should always take off our shoes and hold them in the air, after all they are objects of beauty and deserve every appreciation going. So a fun night was had despite the dilemmas and I leave the pub with about as much sartorial elegance as the lead singer of the band in his bretton striped t shirt. I wake up the next day with a throbbing headache but absolutely no aching calves due to being bare foot most of the evening. Always a silver lining! Most of all I had a lot of fun, stilettos on my feet or not.

My BBF Marcos’ wedding is just around the corner and despite it being held in a bell tent in the middle of Dartmoor with an awful lot of twitchers attending, I know this will be an occasion to dress up. This time the sartorial perplexity is one of a different nature altogether. I need an outfit that will look chic and pretty but not too sexy as I am running very high risk of eek, dare I say it upstaging the bride! Now this is a difficult one as I always love an outfit to be a show stopper but on this occasion I know I need to pair it down and take a back seat. It is not my show and I may need to remind myself every so often! So I try on dress after dress with an array of accessories but none seem quite right, mainly they are too short or way to fashion forward. A week before the wedding and I am still without an outfit. I call upon my trusty friend Rach who has been to more weddings and royal ascot ladies days than the entire royal bunch put together!  We are just about the same size and have similar taste so I’m pretty sure she will have a dress to suit for the occasion. A couple of hours later I emerge from her house with a clothes carrier - contained within is the most perfect dress for a wedding. Classy, chic and pretty, not too short, not showing so much as a glimpse of cleavage! It’s a winner for sure and hopefully one that will do the job for the evening. The wedding, though far from a fashionista’s delight, is a jolly affair. I note I am the only girl to keep her stilettos on for the entire evening and find myself dancing to the likes of Kings of Leon and The Rolling Stones in my purple heeled beauties. The night ends with our taxi having to pull over on the A38 for us to vomit in the grass verge - damn those pasties they brought out at 11 o clock. Never a good idea to eat a pasty after a bucket load of bubbly then bounce around with an air guitar, eek! Luckily Rach’s dress remains vomit free and we all go home feeling much better for the stop off half way. My mind boggles as to why a local Devonshire cabbie struggled with the route, adding an extra half an hour onto our already arduous trip across horrific winding moorland tracks.

A couple of weeks later I am walking Partridge around the beautiful estate of Powderham Castle. I’m gazing in awe at the deer with their exquisite antlers and the joyous abundance of the lambs skipping through the fields. Autumn is most definitely upon us and I relish in being outdoors at this time of year. I love everything about Autumn, to me it has all the refinery a season can offer;  Autumn leaves of colours so rare you want to preserve them, crunching under foot as we climb to the highest point to get a glimpse of a sunset made of the boldest hues. Chestnuts, gourds, conkers, toasty nights by an open fire eating home-made pumpkin soup and star gazing on a clear night. These are all things that make me stop and ponder the nature of time and the essence of beauty. In these moments in my wellies and bobble hat thinking about making that perfect soup I am a million miles removed from my stilettos and the ability to keep them on my feet all night. In the Autumn a new peace of mind is found and I’m happy to be here in the moment, appreciating all that is beautiful in the glorious countryside. After our walk I stop by at the local farm shop and buy a couple of pumpkins, one to cut out for halloween and the other to make soup for supper. I pop them down on the work surface ready to prepare and run upstairs to change. Smiling to myself I kick my stillettos under the bed, for now there is soup to be made!

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