Friday, December 4, 2020

Monster Friday: Striped Sweater Dress and Gentle Souls Flashbacks, and the Bookshelf Other Half

Hello, my friends, and happy Friday to you all! I'm kicking off my weekend by gifting you this monster post, wherein we shall view this striped dress in Flashback, AND the groovy grey suede shoes in Flashback, AND I'm going to show you the other half of my decorated bookshelf. So, grab a cup of whatever pleases you and join me! 

I saved Monster Vest II for my haircut with Sofia, sadly, my last one with her as she is opening her own salon in Langford. I'm super-excited for her (here's her FB page!), but it's too far for us to travel. 

Anyway, I knew she would appreciate my faux fur. 

  • Monster Vest II - Kensie, consignment; purchased here for $24.00
  • Dress - Karen Millen, consignment; last seen here in January for a family gathering
  • Shoes - Gentle Soles; last worn here in December 2019 with a different grey vest
  • Coat (below) - Danier, thrifted; last seen here in October for a Wonder Women shop in Sidney

First the dress without the vest. 
I did overheat once or twice, but Monster Vest II is not as hot to wear as Monster Vest I (or else the hot flashes are easing??). 
Isn't it a sweet dress? Proof that horizontal stripes work when they're done right! 

Add the vest for extra badassery.
I felt really good in this - part of that is that I've been severely curbing my snacking and I'm back to where my clothes are fitting like they're supposed to. Go, me! I shall soon me wearing my #clothesgoals things (McQueen x 2, for example). 
Why yes, I am half-asleep, why do you ask? 
These ginormous faux fur vests are not the most flattering things from all angles - best to keep the layers under it fairly slim. 

Masked up - this is my zebra one from Mom. 
It reminds me of jagged teeth, and added to my overall Monster vibe. 

Outerwear - this vest will only fit under a select few coats...
So why not wear it OVER a thinner coat? I felt so clever! 

  • Gloves - Danier Leather

The stuff: 
I mostly stayed close to my desk today, although I did go out to run some errands in these. Super-comfy! 

Scary bling: 
Even my jewelry was scary today! Rar! 

  • Necklace - the Bay, c. 2009
  • Studded cuff - Alexis Bittar, consignment, Vancouver
  • Fang bangle - Alexis Bittar, consignment, Sidney
  • Leather studded cuff - c. 1997
  • Earrings - Glee
  • Lapis lazuli ring - Wendy Brandes
  • Silver/onyx ring - Toccara, vintage fair

Here's me being a Very Scary Monster! 
Rar! I eat you! 

Flashback #1: Karen Millen Striped Dress

I found this dress at My Sister's Closet (RIP) here in March 2018 for $29.98. It's called the "Clean Stretch" dress and it's from Karen Millen's Fall/Winter 2014 collection. It's a wool blend and very stretchy. 
It's very good quality - look how the striped line up across the body and arms. 
The background is black with stripes of white, tan, orange and blue. 

I wore it to Vancouver in March 2018 for our anniversary trip. This is me and Melanie of Bag and Beret, and we're posing in the Gastown Fluevog store. 
That was Monster Vest I, who has gone to live with my niece Sidney.

I usually play with either the orange or the blue when creating an outfit. Here in April 2018, I did orange. 

And a black and white cat, of course. Showing the orange coat as my outerwear, although I worked all day with just the plain dress showing. 

It's a total jammy dress. Look how dressy a necklace makes it look. 
That was in October 2018. 

I tend to wear it fairly simply - the dress does all the work, here in February 2019. 
I like the long cut of it, although it has a tendency to ride up with tights and nylons. 

I wore it for a casual evening lounging around with friends in October 2019. 
It's perfect for curling up on a couch. Long cardi Flashbacked here.

And here's the last time I wore it, in January 2020 for my brother Dave's 50th birthday. 
Those boots (Flashbacked here) nearly ruined that vest. 

Mathy stuff: As I've now worn this dress 7 times, my original $29.98 is down to $4.28 per wear. Awesome! 

How else would you style this dress? What's your favourite look?

Flashback #2: Gentle Souls Ankle-Strap Platforms

When you have a lot of shoes (I have a lot of shoes), it takes something really unique for me to purchase. It needs to be a colour that I lack, or a style that really calls to me - there has to be some magic there. 

I spotted these at local boutique Footloose Shoes here on a weekend shop with L in August 2015, for $134.00 on clearance. 
The colour appealed to me, as did the soft suede. I wasn't too sure about the weird platform or the odd-shaped heel. 

I do love an ankle strap, though.
And I fell hard when I tried them on - so comfy! You can see all that padding inside. Great shoes for walking but not really as high as they look. It ends up being about 1.5".

I wore them right away to work in August 2015. 
I'm wearing this bubble dress in the framed illustration behind my head, and that's my old fruital blouse, much beloved for many years. All I have left is the belt. 

I gave this sweater to my coworker Chelsea just after I wore it in September 2015. I think Yvonne has that skirt now. 
I like how the shoes look with dark tights - I often have them out for fall/winter. 

I only wore this amazing purple dress once, here in February 2016 - hey, there's today's "teeth" necklace. 
I was so self-conscious about how clingy it was, although I look at it now, and think, "DAMN!"

A fairly classy look in April 2016. 
I had that jacket for a while, and I still have that leather skirt (Flashbacked here). 

My infamous blue blouse peeks out from behind this funky faux fur, also in April 2016. 
Yvonne also has that skirt. 

I'll be wearing this Etro vintage blazer at some point this season - it's been around a long time. 
This was in June 2016, for my series called, "Shoes My Husband Hates", post here

I passed this cashmere sweater along to Yvonne as well (she does get a lot of my clothes!). 
I still have that skirt - it's been around forever! This was in October 2016.

This is so dramatic! Why did I get rid of that red pussy-bow blouse? 
This is in March 2017, and that's the same dress as the first outfit. 

I'm looking boss here in April 2017. 
I love yellow and grey together. 

I had this skirt for ages before I finally gave it up - this was in July 2017. 
Nice to see another one of my many, many ruffled blouses here - I'd forgotten about that one (it's long-gone). 

I still have this pink blazer, seen here in January 2018. 
I loved that skirt...

And wore it again here with my vintage Karl Lagerfeld blazer in April 2018.
But it made a break for my waist whenever to took more than two steps and I moved it along. 

This was a work-to-vintage fair look from June 2018. The theme was polka dots. 
I like the gold accents mixed with the grey/silver accessories. I still have all of these: the dress, the shrug, the bag, the fascinator. 

However, I nothing left from this outfit from September 2018 except the shoes and one cuff. 
I move things out of my closet quickly when they don't work. 

I love this outfit from April 2019 - oh my, I do miss that vintage teal 60s sweater, but it actually wore out. 
That skirt will make a reappearance in the Spring. 

Yellow and grey, together again in August 2019. 
I didn't keep the top (or the jewelry), but we saw that skirt in Flashback here

Pink and grey is also a great combination, as here in November 2019. 
You can see more outfits with the pink skirt in the Flashback here

And here is the last time I wore these shoes, in December 2019 with my long grey knit vest. 
Those are a pair of ginormous pants - I'm looking forward to wearing them soon. 

Mathy stuff: I'm quite surprised at how much I've actually worn these shoes! Over 5.5 years, they've been in 19 outfits, which brings us to $7.05 per wear, and they are still going strong, so I expect to bring that down even further. 

Did you have a favourite look? What colours do you like best with them? 

Christmas Decorations: The Other Half of the Bookshelf/Winnie the Pooh

Today, I'm featuring the other half of the bookshelf where all my Winnie the Pooh collection lives. 

I like how nice and glowy everything looks. 

Starting with What's On The Tree, I picked this Pooh ornament to be the tree-top. He's wearing a metal halo and metal wings. I anchored him in place by bending the branches around him and his hanging thread. 
All of the figural-style Pooh ornaments I have are by Midwest of Canon Falls. They were very good quality (good painting, lots of detail, often mixed media) and not cheap! Most of these single ones were around $15.00 each. I wondered what happened to that company, and turns out it was acquired and gradually "watered down" until it disappeared. My ornaments are all from the "good years", up till 1997 (interesting link here, 'cause I love about their history). 

Confession: my childhood nickname was "Pooh" - my dad dubbed me thusly when I was a baby after my mom handed me to him and I filled my diaper. I love the original A.A. Milne books, the old Disney cartoons, and Ernest Shepherd's illustrations, and I loved that these ornaments are based on them. 
I'm an Eeyore (grumpy, internal), but also WOL (bossy) and Piglet (anxious). I'm not a Pooh (very Zen) at all. 

Just like I don't like plain-backed dresses, I like my ornaments to be just as interesting on the back! 
We carried a very limited line of these ornaments due to the cost ($15.00 was expensive then - it's around $25 now). 

I love this giant glass ball with Pooh on top. 
Only a few of these survived shipping, and I remember some broke in the store (arg, customers!). 

This is a very long and heavy ornament. The star balloon is solid resin, as is Pooh. 
"Be Cheered, It's Christmas". 

These next two ornaments were from Mom, I think. 
I don't remember buying them. 
This one is from 1996. 

And this one...the only one featuring Christopher Robin... from 1997, the year L and I got married. 
They are both made of pewter. 

I love this sproingy Tigger ornament. He's actually on a spring! Tiggers love to bounce, you know. 
So many of these got broken in the store when customers pulled them down and then let them go, causing them to spring back and smash into other ornaments. 

I bought this set of mini ornaments, which were egregiously expensive then, at $46.95. You can see that I had a pricing gun (cha-chunk!) by then (around 1996), although I've still written "SET OF 7" on it. 
People kept trying to open the boxes and buy all the Pooh ornaments. I recall that several of the display ornaments were shoplifted. 
We were open off the street and had a lot of shoplifters. I had to really engage with customers (which frightens off thieves) and learn to talk to strangers. It was good for me, and taught me how to pretend to be outgoing! 

Anyway, I bought a set because I wanted all the characters. 
Tigger and Eeyore. 

WOL and Rabbit. 
Rabbit and WOL got a bit of short shrift in the collection overall. Those are the only images of them.

Pooh, the star. 
And Piglet, Kanga and Roo. 
Considering each of these is 1-2" high, the detail is amazing. 

I still have the hang-tag. 
Not a toy! 

I hung two more Pooh ornaments off the front of the Treasure Box of Wonder. 
Another Pooh hanging from a "balloon", this one a glass ball. 

And Pooh hanging from an arch of stars. 
Ah, Disney, ever the trademark kings. 
I like sitting ornaments on surfaces to look at them better. 
Just because they have a hanging thread doesn't mean they have to hang. 
Santa Pooh with a pot of "huny" and a bee on a spring. 

And a sled full of disaster waiting to happen. 
Such good detail. 
I lined all the sledders in a row on the top of the bookshelf so that they go smallest to largest, and create a sense of movement.
It draws your eye across the front. 

In the background there is my Pooh snowglobe. We sold tons of music boxes (we had a whole section of them). I didn't buy very many, but wanted this one. 
A quote from the books, with Piglet and Pooh tracking a Heffalump, I believe.  

Kanga and Roo on the back. 
The air bubble in this one has expanded over the last 25ish years - most snowglobes have them so that if the water solution freezes and expands, the glass won't break. 

Rabbit and Tigger. 
It plays "Winter Wonderland" (I never wind it up - I loathe Christmas songs). 
It's by Willitts, a company that made amazingly beautiful music boxes. We carried a lot of their carousel horse models. 

And here's the full other half. 
And now, I'm off for the weekend! I'll be back on Sunday with tales of adventure! Thank you so much for stopping by.
Stay safe and be chill (as well as cheered). 


  1. I really like that striped dress on you and you wear it so well every time!

    I loved seeing the Winnie the Pooh ornaments too! Despite the love my kids have for Winnie the Pooh we only have the one decoration - a little baby's first Christmas one for our youngest from Hallmark and it's a Winnie the Pooh one :) I has been broken at least twice and I've had to mend it each time, haha! If it ever gets too damaged I'll need to try swap it for my mum's one, she bought the same one coincidently for her own tree :) Thank you for bringing out all this Christmas cheer - I think we really need it this year, I know I do!

    1. Thank you so much, Mica! I love wearing it.

      I just adore Winnie the Pooh - it's sappy and cheesy and I don't care. That's so sweet that you have a First Christmas Pooh ornament!

      I definitely have needed it this year, and I'm really thankful that I decided to do this, and share it. :)

  2. Hi Sheila,

    You and the striped dress are a match made in heaven ❤️ Gorgeous! I especially like the outfits when there is a bright pop of color to complement the dress, like the blue tights or the blue vest or the orange jacket.
    As for the grey shoes, I liked a lot of your style choices and especially any with yellow skirts and, perhaps my favorite, with that pink skirt!

    Congrats on gently backing off on the snacking to meet your goal. I know how satisfying it can be on both ends, enjoying the snacks :) and having comfortable fitting clothes. Forgetting about the impact of the pandemic (for just a moment!) I find late winter is when I snack the most and summer is when I am most active and the seesaw comes back into balance. ;)

    I’ve enjoyed the tour through your ornaments and seeing the vignettes. My grandchildren would quite enjoy being there and squealing with delight at the variety. Tomorrow is St Nicholas day and I’m sharing the screen shots with them of your Santas.

    Here’s to the weekend!
    Cheers, Laurie

    1. Happy St. Nicholas Day, Laurie! Thank you so much - I like the pops of colour with the dress too. The grey shoes really do feel more like a spring/summer shoe to me.

      It's been hard, as food is really my comfort, but it's been worth it to feel better in my clothes. Yes, there's a lot of chocolate around this time of year! So many temptations.

      I'm so glad - thank you for sharing the pictures!

  3. This is a beautiful dress and it suits you like a glove. You look stunning in it. I actually saw a very similar dress in an outlet store and wanted to buy it but it even discounted it was a bit pricey for me. If I come across a similar one again, I'll definitely buy it as I do love this kind of dresses. I'm a big fan of stripes as well. I love how you wore it with a faux fur long vest- and very clever layering it over a lighter coat, I've done the same thing with some long vests as well. Great for keeping warm and it looks cool as well. I also love your statement necklace. You always have amazing accessories. The heels are fabulous as well, I enjoyed your fashion flash back with them.

    That's a funny story about how you got nicknamed Pooh by your dad. I love Winnie the Pooh, both the original versions and the Disney adaptations. My nephew enjoyed reading the original book by Milne, I think it was required reading in his first or second grade. He doesn't always enjoy books he has to read for school but he liked this one. I think it helped that he had read simpler versions of it in various Disney based book adaptations before he read the original one. I know there has been controversy surrounding the Disney company from plagiarism to what not, but I cannot help liking their old films and cartoons, as they remind me of my childhood. I do like the original illustrations by Shepard the best. You have a wonderful collection of great quality Winnie the Pooh Christmas ornaments. Yes, I love all your ornaments. So fun you're sharing them all with us and the stories that come with them- that's sometimes the best thing about them.

    1. Thank you so much, Ivana! I see similar dresses to this, but the quality has not been as good as this one. I love a nice long dress like this too. I enjoy collecting unusual accessories, so thanks for noting that.

      It makes me smile to think of it. Disney is really to thank for a whole generation growing up with Pooh and his friends. They really do remind me of my childhood. Thanks, I love my ornaments, and it was fun to share these and their stories.

  4. Love your Scary Monster pose! I may copy that. The ornaments and their stories are nice.

    1. Make sure you say, "RAR! I bite you!" when you do it. :) Thanks, Ally!

  5. My oldest daughter loves Pooh! Have you considered belting the dress or layering it with another dress?

    1. Ianiza, nice to see you!! I have tried wearing a looser outer dress with this (only trying it on, not as an outfit), but not belting it, as it's already fairly body-con.

  6. Love your blue tights. They're such a perfect shade of dark, but not full on navy, blue - and feel as though they could be the official hosiery colour choice for these last few days of fall.

    Autumn Zenith 🧡 Witchcrafted Life

    1. I like them too - they're not too bright or too dark. Thanks, Autumn.

  7. Such sweet decorations. You do wear stipes well and well done on curbin ghte snacking. My weight has stayed he same (too high) for a couple years, but is also shifting to wrong places. You must keep trac of your wears-I don't remember if I changed my socks from the day before let alone a yea ror more ago what I might have worn. But then, I do not have your fab wardrobe.

    1. Thanks so much, Sam! Maintaining is better than gaining! I am lucky to have had my WW background to help get me back on track.

      Yes, I've been tracking my wears since I started blogging, pretty much. All those "last seen/worn here" are actually links - you can trace back every time I wore something until when I originally bought it.

  8. That striped dress is awesome on you. I thought it would show every hubble and bubble. You must not have any as I don't see them. Beautiful. And indeed, the purple dress was lovely too.
    The shoes are keepers. Would never have thought that.
    And that Etro jacket.... so good.
    The April 2017 outfit is more classic but I admit I do like it a lot.
    What a terrific Pooh collection !!!

    1. I know, right, Greetje? It's a magic dress! Thank you!

      Again, they're odd-looking shoes, but I do love them. The Etro jacket will make an appearance at some point. That was a good outfit in Apr 2017.


  9. Let me start by telling you I'm absolutely envious of your haircut! I was booked in for a colour and cut on Thursday, but hairdressers haven't been allowed to re-open just yet. So, it's back to Corona hair for me, made only slightly more bearable by wearing berets!
    That striped dress does look amazing on you! Well done on curbing your snacking. Monster Vest is perfect with it, and I love how your shoes echo its colour.
    And ooh, not one but two flash backs. Seeing the striped dress with Monster Vest I, I do think I have a slight preference for Monster Vest II. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it does seem to be much more stroke-able. The shoe flashback offers lots of wonderful looks to scroll through. I can definitely see why you had to have them.
    I didn't have you down as a Winnie-the-Pooh fan! What a wonderful collection you have. I love
    E. H. Shepard's original illustrations for the books. And we once visited Ashdown Forest in East Sussex where most of the stories are set. And played Pooh-sticks at the original Pooh-sticks bridge, together with lots of Japanese tourists :-) xxx

    1. Oh no, Ann, that totally sucks! Good thing you have so many berets!

      Thank you - I'm very proud of myself (it's been hard!), and felt great in the dress. I agree, Monster Vest II is nicer faux fur, and the cut is better.

      I know, I don't seem like I'd be a Winnie the Pooh fan! I love the original illustrations and remember poring over them in my book. How wonderful that you got to play Pooh-sticks!

  10. You look amazing in that striped dress -- it is really lovely. What an amazing collection of Winnie-the-Pooh ornaments. Enjoying all of them really gavem a Christmassy feeling -- thank you! And a Pooh quote: “It isn’t much good having anything exciting, if you can’t share it with somebody.”
    —Winnie the Pooh

    1. Thanks so much, Cynthia! I love that quote, and that's exactly how I'm feeling this year. It's been wonderful to share my collection with everyone here.

  11. AH, it's lovely to see your decorations in detail- they are really lovely and yes, 'glowy' is a wonderful choice of word to describe them!
    Your outfits are great and it's so nice to see the stripy dress in action in so many different ways- I do like the furry monster gilet over the top (and yes, wearing a gilet over a coat is a great idea- I do this too! You've just reminded me to get my gilets out of the monster suitcase in the spare room (along with the Christmas jumpers!)
    The grey fluevogs are super! Very versatile too! Your work colleague is lucky to inherit your clothes. Funnily enough, I have a work colleague that also inherits my clothes too- it always makes me really happy when I see her wearing one of them. It just reminded me that I haven't seen her for about 2 weeks. Hmmm.

    1. Thanks, Kezzie! I have been having fun going through them and looking at them through fresh eyes too.

      Thanks! Get your gillet/vest out!

      These are not Fluevogs (I know, seems like they should be!). I give a lot of my clothes away to colleagues and friends, and I LOVE seeing them being worn.

  12. Shiela, you look AMAZING in your striped dress! A good reminder to avoid snacking alot or at least having healthy snacks (I need to get better at this). X

    1. Thank you so much, Jess! It's been hard (I WANT chocolate and chips!), but worth it!

  13. A hairdresser! Oh God I need a haircut. And a color for my grey roots. Isn't it horror when you have a good hair stylist and they move. Love the striped dress!

    1. I know, Nancy, I feel so lucky now just to get my hair cut. I will miss Sophia, but hopefully Kelsey will be good.

  14. P.S. I forgot to write- That photo of you and Melanie is gorgeous. I love both outfits and the poses are perfect.

  15. This post features two more of my absolute fave items in your wardrobe! The striped Karen Millen dress is a classic, and those grey ankle strap shoes are on my "Shoes I would wear if I didn't have bunions" list.

    I have always loved the "100 acre wood" characters, especially Eeyore and Tigger! What a wonderful collection of ornaments.

    1. That's high praise, Shelley, thank you! I didn't peg you as a Winnie the Pooh fan, but I'm glad you enjoyed them.

  16. I love your striped dress! I'm a sucker for a good stripe. I've been enjoying catching up on your blog- it's reminded me to have fun with my clothes again (I've sadly been neglecting this area)... and to ease up on those Christmas baked goods so I can actually fit in them haha.
    It's also been great seeing all of your super nice Christmas decorations! I'm such a sap for Christmas and love to decorate so it's been fun seeing all your festive stuff. :)

    1. Thank you, Ashley, me too! Having fun with my clothes, and getting my sparkly on, is really good for my mental health. I haven't had any baked goods (I can't be bothered to bake), so that hasn't been a temptation, thankfully!

      I'm so glad you've enjoyed seeing them! There's lots more to come!

  17. Your striped dress is klassy with a capital K! The monster vest II is utterly perfect with it, too. Well done for cutting down on the snacking, having a fabulous collection of clothing to fit into is the best incentive for stepping away from the crisps.
    Those shoes are fab, particularly loving the December 2019 look with that splendid ruffled blouse! xxx

    1. Thanks so much, Vix! It's been very challenging not snacking, as it'd gotten to be a habit, and was comforting in its way. I did really want to get back in my clothes, though!

  18. This is another lovely jammy dress, it looks comfy, stylish and striped!, and you rock it with the furry vest and fab shoes!. Love that you wore your vest Over leather jacket, brilliant idea!. And lots of interesting layering in your flashback!
    Love the photo of you with Melanie!
    And so lovely Pooh collection, it's an amazing decoration!

    1. I do love a good jammy dress! Thank you - I was so pleased that I thought of layering it over my coat! I adore the pic with Melanie - I really missed seeing her last year.

      Thank you!


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