vrijdag 22 mei 2015

Daily Boho: Isabel Marant top and jeans

Isabel Marant top
Isabel Marant top
Isabel Marant top
Isabel Marant top

And here it is in all it's ironed glory, the Isabel Marant blouse I talked about in my previous post (why you never need to be afraid of dry clean only again). It is a cool understated bohohemian style blouse cum tunic. I had seen this in a local shop last year but found it far to expensive. I couldn't believe my luck when I saw it on sale on The Outnet, reduced to 40% of the original price! It was still a hefty amount to pay for one item but it is simply divine. Made from a linen & silk blend (thus the Dry Clean only malaky..) it is a prefect warm weather top. The Boho trend - is it still a trend or a style by now; it has been going strong for a very long time now- is something I really like but not always full on. I am not by far an Ibiza goer and I don't not fancy looking like one either. This piece is just a bit different with the fresh polka dots and big check pattern. Oh, and I am sorry, it does become a bit tedious to keep on complaining about the weather here, but it is usually not this cold in the third week of May! So I started wearing my summer things with thermal underwear. Only joking, it's a standard white t-shirt I have on underneath but I have been tempted! And maybe, maybe we can persuade the weathergods to look favorable on us after all our efforts to dress like it is actually Spring. Watch this space.....
Isabel Marant for HM bracelet
Blouse: Isabel Marant via The Outnet
Bracelets: Isabel Marant for HM (blue) and fake coral from a local shop (red)
T-Shirt: Primark
Earrings: vintage
Jeans: Staff Jeans (old)
Flats: Piede a Terre (nearly vintage, had them over 10 years!)

Have you made a great super fantastic devine purchase in the sales?

Please share in the comments! I would love to hear from you and I always try to respond...

See you next time,


dinsdag 19 mei 2015

Why you never need to be afraid of 'Dryclean Only' again!

What do you when you see 'dryclean only' on the label in a garment? Let it hang on the rail in the shop and carry on searching? Have you noticed that a lot of clothes in the sale of expensive (online) shops often carry this advice in the label? Well, it is often very unnecessary advice, however nicely intended  (the aim after all is to keep the quality of the item as good as possible for a certain length of time).
Here is my advice; have a closer look! What is the piece actually made off? To give you an example, I have a knitted jumper made of 100% cotton where the label says 'Dryclean Only'. I beg of you, cotton to the dry cleaners? OK, it is Marc Jacobs (found at, reduced to a ridiculous price, wasn't I lucky!) But still, taking such an item to the dry cleaners is taking a simple cotton jumper far too seriously!

I have found that all manner of mixes of silk, wool, cotton and linen can easily be washed in the machine on the handwash/wool/silk program on a low temperature with special detergent. Of course, I wouldn't gamble on fitted items like jackets or a weddingdress but most other items are absolutely fine in your own humble laundryroom. I use good old Woolite for wool & silk but I'm sure you could use the standard supermarket fine detergent as well. The machine does a far better job than you can do yourself with a bucket or in the sink in keeping the right temperature, length of rinsing etc. I wash these delicate clothes on 20 Degrees Celsius, that is actually quite cold water! 'Handwarm' which feels comfortable because it is close to our body temperature of 37 Degrees, is far far to warm.

An other reason why people stay clear of things they need to hand wash or bring to the dry cleaners is the difficulty of having just the one item that needs special treatment. I have never been deterred from delicate fabrics, not even when my boys were babies. The trick is to own loads of delicate 'handwash' or 'dryclean only' items. After wearing  I store them in a special laundry bag. This is a safety measure as my dear husband often does the bulk-washes (towels, bedding, very soiled boys' trousers) and doesn't always sort things carefully. After a few traumatic incidents with my beautiful clothes I became wiser! You need a bit of stash of things to wash but you should only fill up half the drum so you do not really need that many fine clothes after all! (need is as flexible as chewing gum here)

Straight after washing I let the clothes dry on a hanger or flat on a airing rack. Here is my latest 'dry clean only' item: a silk and linen blend blouse by Isabel Marant (in the Outnet sale, hurray!). I'll iron it soon and show you in my next post!
Isabel Marant silk and linen blouse

Do you have special clothes maintenance tricks?

Please share in the comments! I would love to hear from you and I always try to respond...

See you next time,


maandag 11 mei 2015

My Great British Love affair: sulphur yellow trousers & pink tasseled pumps

Boden Chelsea turn ups
Boden Chelsea turn ups
White summer blouse
Alice mid heel
Do you know Wallace and Gromit? The BBC broadcasted 'the wrong trousers' a couple of days ago again. I so love Nick Park's animation films. These are very clearly not the wrong trousers but the right trousers! Even before I lived in the UK I had a unexplainable love of all things British. When I moved to London to go the Royal College of Art in the mid-nineties, I felt at home immediately. Moving back to Holland four years later was very hard indeed and is has taken me good while to get adjusted to Dutch life again. My life in the Netherlands has turned out really brilliantly though and I have hung on to some British things over the last decade (PG-tips, BBC, English literature, fashion and style)

The use of colour in the UK is very different from the way the Dutch use colour (my thesis at college was about the difference in domestic architecture between the two countries and the subsequent difference in interior/colouring tastes) This sulphur mustardy yellow colour is slighty off in Dutch eyes, it's too dirty, it has a greenish undertone that makes it too 'difficult' from a Dutch perspective. I like these trousers and their weird colour because of their Britishness. They are from Boden, like the shoes, I doubt if anyone in blog-O-sphere hasn't heard from them! I like the fact that these trousers are a classic chino but with a very British tailoring like you see in men's suits (I have worked in an antiquarian bookshop in the City and have made a bit of a study of suits. Honestly you can spot a Dutchman from a mile of in the City! Slouchy suit with a Helly Hansen coat, yuk!)
Back to said trousers. They are not too wide, not too slim but exactly right in a lovely slightly stretchy fabric (no knees sticking out after sitting in them and my arse stays covered when I bend) etc, you get the picture. Perfect trousers!

As for the 'problem' of what to wear them with, I do not find them remotely difficult to style: I will team these trousers with white, cream, bright pink, navy or black. Today I'm wearing them with a cute star-printed blouse with fluorescent pink details from a Danish brand, Lollys Laundry (I do happen to have a huge crush on Danish Design as well)
The shoes. Do I actually need to mention them? These Alice Heels from Boden were plastered all over Instagram and Bloglovin and that's how I found them and fell in love with them. If you follow me on Instagram (fashionsabbatical) you might have seen them arrive on April 29th. Aren't they fun?
One of my aunts was worried I wouldn't be able to walk in them but I must say that they are sturdier then they look and I just love love love them!

In London I saw a lot of houses with wisteria growing all over at the front. I've always liked that idea very much so I planted one when we bought our house 5 years ago.The combination of the light purple flowers with the red front door looks a bit British to me somehow. And it's a clever way to hide the hideous concrete lintel above the door (must speak to the architect about this: what was he thinking!?) The photo's turned out a bit vague (I could call it dreamy...) and my apologies for that. I still struggle with focusing.
self portrait photography
Blouse: Lollys Laundry (nearly exact)
Trousers: Boden (exact)
Shoes: Boden (exact)
Earrings: Vintage
Make-up bag: Clinique

Do you have a great love affair when it comes to clothes? Brit Chic, Parisian or Scandinavian?

Let me know in the comments!

See you next time,


(I enjoy regular link ups with Fashion Should Be FunVisual MondayElegantly Dressed & StylishRachel the Hat and Style Nudge)

maandag 4 mei 2015

May holiday wear: the best Breton stripe shirt ever!

Breton striped shirt
Breton striped shirt

A while ago I bought this Breton striped shirt from the Ines de la Fressange range from Uniqlo. They are sold out now but as long as this fruitful collaboration stands I expect they'll come up with more.... At any rate, Carine Roitfeld just started a collaboration with Uniqlo as I recently read in this post from that's not my age, so we might be treated to more French Style at a Bargain (and good quality!)
It is the May holiday, my house is flooded with children and I have a program full of days out, theme parks, museums, the restaurant with the big yellow M (only in schoolholidays) and loads loads more.
And I'll go on a glasses-hunt tomorrow! Yes finally, I am so tired of these glasses!
A Breton stripe with jeans and trainers (or sneakers as they are called across the pond and in the Netherlands funny enough) will see me trough all these activities without fail ( fear not I will not wear the same shirt for the entire week!)

Shirt: Uniqlo (Ines de la Fressange range)
Jeans: Staff jeans
Belt: Liebeskind (similar)
Trainers: Woden (similar)

What is your go-to holiday wear?
Let me know in the comments!

See you next time,


(I enjoy regular link ups with Fashion Should Be FunVisual MondayElegantly Dressed & StylishRachel the Hat and Style Nudge)

maandag 27 april 2015

What to wear when working from home: Adidas sweater & Brocade with a pop of pink

Adidas sweater, pink details
Adidas grey marl sweater with pink
Pointy black flats

'Tomorrow makes me curious' is printed on my notebook. I choose it for my notes exactly because tomorrow & the near future does make me curious! This week I have started a professional course to specialize further in (my current workfield) medical occupational health. The coming months I'll won't be doing much else besides studying Dutch social law, ergonomics and many many things occupational (there is no English translation for this profession -Arbeidsdeskundige- because it only exists in the Netherlands) I'm loving it!

Comfortable sportswear is easy to wear when working at home but I like my homewear to be elegant and colourful, made of nice fabrics. I do not even own a pair of tracksuit bottoms! This Adidas cardi is somewhat of an exception in my wardrobe, bought on a whim a few years ago. It has proved it self very useful though. It is mostly draped over the chair behind my desk to pull over my shoulders when I get cold after sitting still for a while (I know as a proper occupational health person this is actually a sign that my body need moving again, but alas!) I decided it deserved a proper styling. So here it is: teamed with chic brocade trousers (featured in this post), a slinky pink top that matches the classic Adidas triple stripe and pointy black flats. What's not to love? Mood improving straight away and that's why I bother, even when I'm stuck at home with my textbooks for company.....
Adidas grey marl sweater jacket with pink details
Pointy black flats
Black pearl and silver bracelet
Sports jacket: Adidas (similar)
Top: French Connection (similar)
Trousers: Jigsaw (old) (similar)
Shoes: Pied a Terre (extremely old) I like this one
Bracelets: vintage (black beaded) and coloured pearl and silver via showroomprive (till 30th April there is a sale on from Amour d'Perle which is quite similar but check them out, they have beautiful jewelery on sale on a regular basis. To give you an idea: I paid €11,00 for this bracelet!)
Chair: Philippe Starck, Kartell Masters
Notebook: Hema

Do you wear sportswear at home?

Let me know in the comments!

See you again soon,


(I enjoy regular link ups with Fashion Should Be FunVisual MondayElegantly Dressed & StylishRachel the Hat and Style Nudge)

zaterdag 18 april 2015

The Adult Way to wear a Cap Sleeve T-shirt with Flare....

Paala shirt, flared jeans
self portrait photography

Flare...I mend flair of course. Not a typo but my attempt at language play (one of my favorite books, by David Crystal) When I lived in London I used to pass a fish & chip shop on the 52 bus route to Willesden Green every day. It was called the 'Plaice to Be'. I've always liked jokes and puns like that. Cheesy, I know!
This t-shirt falls more or less in that cheesy category. It has a funny cheerful graphic print of an apple on a bright green base with a 70s feel. The fabric is absolutely lovely, it's organic bamboo. It is by Paala, a small Dutch clothing label, producing hand screen printed shirts for women. I hardly ever wear T-shirts on their own anymore now I've passed the famous 40-line. When I was much younger I was very fond of tops with cap sleeves. I must have been on automatic pilot last year when I bought this shirt because when I had a closer view on a holiday picture (how seldom!) I spotted that my upper arms weren't the pre-children toned beauties anymore. Ok, that bit of body image corrected.
Solution: I wore it over an old office blouse in pale blue, nearly the same colour as the jeans. Styled this way, it looks like a slip-over (which we call a 'spencer' in Dutch oddly enough. This is another one of those English sounding words in our language that has a different meaning or doesn't exist at all in English. I had another example in the post early spring dressing)

The jeans I call starter flares. They are from Marks & Spencers and I bought them as an experiment. Would I like wide bottomed jeans again after years of skinnies? When I look down I think I'm wearing enormous flares, they certainly flap about when I walk. But now I've had a change to look at them properly (see, always trust the photograph, not the mirror!) to conclude that they are quite medium flares. Funny thing though, I must have gotten used to them in a very short space of time. I wore them the first time for this post in february and then I thought the flares where massive! I must say, I do really like flares and I hesitate to write 'again' as I only wore them in my very early youth. I shall be on the lookout for proper flares this autumn (she says with conviction..)

Hunkydory braided wrap leather belt
green peeptoe court , flared jeans

T-shirt: cool Dutch eco-label Paala  (similar)
Jeans: Marks & Spencers,  exact
Shirt: Bandolera
Shoes: Unisa. I would loooooove these! from Unisa.
Belt: Hunkydory (similar)
Bag: bought on holiday in France on a village market ( and now I've learned that they are in fact called French Market Totebags)
Camera: Pentax P30 (retired)

Cap sleeves over 40; No or GO?

Let me know in the comments!

See you again soon,


(I enjoy regular link ups with Fashion Should Be Fun, Visual Monday, Elegantly Dressed & Stylish, Rachel the Hat and Style Nudge)

zondag 12 april 2015

Quilted Ivory Kimono Jacket & Colourful Leopard Print Blouse in the morning sun

Quilted Ivory Kimono Jacket
Quilted Ivory Kimono Jacket, Colourful Leopard print Blouse
Quilted Ivory Kimono Jacket
Colourful Leopard Print Blouse
This cute little lane with pollard willows is one of the unexpected passages of green in Rotterdam. You'd think I'm walking down a country lane but in fact I'm next to a highroad to the motorway, metroline and a big general hospital.
The jacket I'm wearing is from a French brand called Manoush. I found it 'accidentally' on a sales website with a curious name, Showroomprivé. I always feel a bit embarrassed when I pick up a parcel from them at the collect-point (a tobacconist, to add to the misery - a place I never frequent as I am a passionate non-smoker!) The name suggests a shop for a certain kind of goods that are rather ahem, privé/private. Their previous name was Brandinvites which sounds more accurate and inviting. I can't for the life of me understand why they changed it but I'm still a happy customer there.
Back to the star of this blogpost: an unpattered Kimonojacket. I love kimono jackets but never owned one as I never liked the patterns on them. Unconsciously I must have been looking for one without pattern or that isn't too oriental. Happy as a child I was when I spotted this jacket! That's were my serendipity-light way of shopping comes in as I explained in this post last autumn. I like chinoiserie in clothing but I don't like it when items are exact copies or 'quotations'. The designer at Manoush is inspired by oriental influences and her clothes are bohemian but they are original and they never become too literal. The fine quilting of the kimono reminds me of jackets I've seen in India. The colour is very pale ivory with a pink undertone, nearly the same as my skin. It is 100% cotton but ever so fine, it feels like silk. I like combining it with something more colourful as tones that match my skintone too much tend to wash me out. The leopard print blouse has the same base colour but the colourful spots are just enough to make liven the look up.
Quilted Ivory Kimono Jacket
Green two tone ballerinas

Kimono Jacket: Manoush, via Have not found anything similar but I love this jacket!
Blouse: Maison Scotch (sold out) I think this blouse is quite similar in look and feel.
Jeans: Flippa K Super Stretch Coloured Jeans (three year old) (exact)
Bag: Isabella Rhea via Showroomprive
Shoes: Bisue Ballerinas via Showroomprive
Bracelet; de Bijenkorf (at least 10 years old) I'd really love this one! or this bangle.

Just as I finished shooting a group of people came by, see more on the behind the scenes page...

Do you let chance decide your clothing or do always know exactly what you are looking for?
Let me know in the comments!

See you again soon,


Shopping My Closet

donderdag 2 april 2015

What to wear when working from home: bomber jacket, boyfriend jeans & pointy flats

bomber jacket, boyfriend jeans, pointed flats
bomber jacket, boyfriend jeans, pointed flats
bomber jacket, boyfriend jeans, pointed flats
bomber jacket and breton stripes
pointy flats

When I'm working at home I don't want to feel like the mad woman in the attic (that's were my work space is) but I needn't dress like I am about to deliver a presentation to the BOD. See my theory on the freelancers-trap in the about page of Fashion Sabbatical Dress.

We all know how it is done, we have all read it in our guidebooks (think Style Forever from Alyson Walsh which is a truly great book!) We all know how to dress down a showbizz item and look cool and not overdressed in it during the day. So I put theory to the test and wore my tattiest pair of jeans with a luxurious silky bomber jacket with the this-goes-with-everything-Breton-striped-top. Finished the whole look off with funky pointy shoes and was amazed! It works!

I found this lovely blue and black patterned bomber jacket in the sale last year. I love bomberjackets (have a look on my Pinterest board on bomberjackets for more inspiration). I wish this one was reversible; I love the lining! I find bomber jackets very versatile and easier to style up or down than a blazer. I have another shiny one which you have seen on the post Glitzy bomberjacket pre-Christmas last December and a few plain ones.
The shoes are made of crackled leather in a shade that seems to adjust itself to what ever you are wearing. They are really comfortable or I just happen to be lucky enough to have sturdy feet, but I can walk in these all day  (OK, granted, I've spend most of the day behind the computer)

As you can see, I'm holding the remote control for the camera in my hand. The focus is still a hit & miss process, I'm afraid. See it as work in progress.....

bomberjacket Baum und Pferdgarten
Bomber jacket: Baum und Pferdgarten (exact)
Jeans: G-star Ford Straight (exact) Mine are 5 years old.
Belt: vintage (belonged to family member in the 80's)
Top: Cos (exact)
Shoes: Uterque, sold out. I like these and these are quite similar
Teacup: Ittala Taika (exact)
Lipshade: Watermelon from Bobbi Brown (exact)

Have you tried a 'tried & tested' combination for yourself? Did you like the result?

Let me know in the comments!

See you next time,


(I enjoy regular link ups with Fashion Should Be FunVisual MondayElegantly Dressed & Stylish and Style Nudge)

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