Monday, 16 January 2017

Ski fashion through the ages

This weekend marked the panicky “4 weeks until we go skiing” weekend for me. Four weeks of “Argh,I will never be fit enough” and “argh, why do children always insist on GROWING?”

Anyway, last weekend, we had some of the lovely friends who we are going with over to our place, and we took them on a tour of local outdoor sports outfitters in a quest to get them kitted out in some new gear.This clearly made me realise that, while I am quite good at spending my own money, spending other people’s is ten times more fun! It was a largely successful trip, resulting in them mainly getting what they came for, and no children whining.

Our friend M has not updated his ski attire since we first went skiing with him around 15 years ago, and this got me pondering (in a totally unresearched, unscientific way) how slopeside fashion has moved on over the years...

The 70s:

The earliest known photograph of me on a pair of skis dates from roughly 1976 at the age of not very old, courtesy of a winter holiday in Austria. Sadly, despite my best efforts, I was unable to unearth it in my parent's house for the sake of this blog post. You'll have to believe me when I say it involves a very fetching bright red one-piece and the biggest 70s-style sunglasses on a very small child - very vaguely like this, but smaller:

Image result for 1970s child ski clothing
via Pinterest

My knowledge of the fashions of this time is slightly sketchy, but I can only deduce that the seventies followed the high fashion knitted jodhpurs and woolly jumpers of the Bond films of the 1960s with some slightly more basic “technical” properties, such as waterproofing.

The 80s:

The 1980s of course is where slope fashion really kicks up a notch - with added colour, added print and added volume. Common for both men and women was the all-in-one, either in delicate pastels or primary colours with graphic prints. These styles can still be spotted on the ski slopes of the French alps in the over-50s if you look carefully, but the photo I'm using to demonstrate this look IS from the family archive - eyes have been starred to protect the innocent...:

80s ski fashion


The 90s:

Starting off in counter-culture towards the late 80s and the early 90s, by the late 90s “snowboard style” was becoming more mainstream and with a defined identity - even influencing mainstream ski fashions, which got looser and baggier and reverted to two pieces

Image result
Link

The 00s:

Thankfully, the noughties is where I first started my forays into serious downhill territory, and by this
point designer fashion was making a name for itself on the slopes, as in this photo of Victoria
Beckham – Chanel skis, anyone?

Victoria Beckham with Chanel Skis
via Pinterest

More obviously, however, for those of us mere mortals that could not stretch to Prada ski jackets, this merely meant a more toned down aesthetic – at least as far as colours went. Black was, after all, the new black, and even if you weren't dressed as the milk tray man, you were probably dressed fairly "tastefully" in comparison to some of the 80s and 90s.

The 2010s:

Which brings us to today. The biggest change in the last ten years has probably been the move from "helmets for the kids" to "helmets for all", and it's now rare to see people without them on the slopes. Colour and pattern are also making a comeback in a big way, and not just on jackets, but also on salopettes, as is ski wear that doesn't look much like ski wear -  beware the perils of a furry hood in the snow! If you're thinking of updating your look, therefore, you probably have more choice than ever - if you really want to, you can even find one-piece suits for adults again...

Dare you try that "anything goes" vibe? Here are some of my favourite slightly wackier picks:



L-R, from top left: Decathlon slide ski trousers, Burton radar jacket, Women's chevron "oneskee", Smith Valence ski helmet,  Top Shop zebra co-ord, Roxy Rockferry goggles, Sweaty Betty Jardin long sleeve top and leggings, Norrona Lofoten Gore-Tex pro pants,  Dare2Be Illation jacket



Sunday, 6 December 2015

I'm So Loving...

1) Christmas lights in December
2) Hamming it up in my first amateur theatricals in 11 years
3) That rehearsals mean I do some decent walking again
4) That there has been some great TV on recently (The Bridge series 3, Catastrophe series 2, Detectorists series 2, You Me & The Apocalypse to name but a few)
5) That the prospect of 10 days off for the first time since August seems tantalisingly close
6) The return of winter boots
7) The joy of discovering a real gem of a gift for someone
8) The smell of cinnamon and gingerbread
9)That my children still find this time of year magical
10) Christmas lights in December


Friday, 27 November 2015

Things I am over.

  1. Beards.
  2. People who post nothing but Instagram links on Twitter.
  3. Christmas in November
  4. The state of my pigsty house
  5. People who keep pulling out in front of me on roundabouts
  6. Insurance companies
  7. Women's clothing without decent pockets
  8. Books with no obvious chapters
  9. Books with ridiculously long chapters
  10. Monday mornings
  11. Dark days
  12. People saying "off of"
  13. Not having any time off work since August
  14. Christmas adverts
  15. Getting old
  16. Car alarms
  17. Fly tippers
  18. Beards





Saturday, 21 November 2015

The trouble with tween girls (the Christmas gift edition)

(Disclosure: this is a PR collaboration with those lovely folks at Brantano, so you'll see one or two of their items in this list - all ideas are my own though).

Eldest daughter is closer to 10 than 11. Youngest daughter is 8 and a half. I'm putting these facts out there mainly for my own benefit. You see, you'd think it would no longer surprise me after ALL THESE YEARS how different my children are to each other. So much for me priding myself on being relatively intelligent, but I'm still not quite sure how two children with (apparently) the same genetic base to choose from end up with such a different mixture. At no time is this more apparent than in the run up to Christmas every year.

Daughter no. 2 starts thinking about her list around October every year, puts pen to paper early November, and places it in front of the chimney no later than mid-November. Her list is detailed and long, containing a mix of the fanciful (does anyone know where I can get an "invisibility cloak" from?), the realistic (various DVDs), and thoughtful ("a hoverboard for daddy").

Daughter no. 1, however, is much more laissez-faire about the whole thing (last year's list; "Just surprise me"). This may of course be down to the fact that she appears to be at that age where I suspect she no longer really quite believes in the whole Father Christmas thing (mainly brought on by the fact Mr Sardinetin and I are such bad liars), but is worried that admitting this may be tempting fate too much. This year, at least we have something concrete to go on - namely a list containing 3 items; 

1) A phone
2) A phone case
3) Surprise me

(Ah, the dreaded mobile phone debate. I've resisted it for as long as possible - up to now, I've managed to bat it away fairly easily with a simple "you're too young". Yet with increased independence and peer pressure it isn't quite as easy an argument to have any more. Realistically, it will probably end up being an 11th birthday present, and it is likely to be a second-hand parental cast off. No good for Christmas, therefore.)

So what does a true tween get for Christmas?! Well, never mind the tween herself, here are my personal favourites....



(From the top, left to right:
1) World scratch off map - as she's turning into quite a well-travelled young lady, who is also off to Berlin (gulp) with school next year
2) Glitter owl bag- because GLITTER! and OWLS!
3) A personalised purse - to go in the bag, obvs.
4) Make your own lip balm kit - for a bit of fun, plus it comes in chocolate flavour for our resident chocoholic.
5) Monster High canvas shoes - because, despite hating pink, my particular tween has a thing for pink leopard print at the moment.(Although, as I've previously blogged, shoes are also a bit of a bone of contention around here, so I may be on a losing streak with this one...)
6) F is for Fabulous....an initial letter light  - for the bedroom makeover we're planning next year
7) Vintage style Cluedo - because, despite exhibiting increasingly teenage tendencies, she still loves playing family board games. Plus this edition does wonders for parental nostalgia.
8) Great British Bake Off hoody - one of her favourite TV shows. Plus nobody likes a soggy bottom.
9) A Motorola Moto G. OK, OK, I said no phones...but if she were to get one, it might be something like this. I have one and it's a great phone for not huge amounts of money. (Plus if I give her my old one, I can have a new one, right?)

Now if you'll pardon me, I'm off to pine for the days when I could buy Christmas pudding bibs and elf hats. Thank goodness I have a one year old nephew...




Friday, 14 August 2015

Separation Anxiety

The kids have been keeping me awake at night recently. No, they're not babies any more, and no, they haven't been ill. I'm not up doing night feeds or soothing teething. There are not even any night terrors or bed wetting.

The thing is, they've not even been on the house.

We're supposed to be enjoying a week's peace and quiet while they live it up a the nearby centre of a well-known operator of outdoor activity centres, enjoying pursuits such as abseiling, quad-biking and aeroball(?). They've both been there before - more than once- with either school or Brownies, so it should not be a big deal. They are also no strangers to staying away from home overnight with friends and family.

Somehow, however, this feels different. It's the first time we don't know any of the people in charge of looking after them overnight, and we have no real way of contracting them. Even if they had phones off their own (which they don't!), valuables are discouraged and locked away on arrival, and children are actively discouraged from phoning home as it can apparently cause additional homesickness.

All of which of course leaves me at home worrying...

...if they remembered to apply sunscreen when it was sunny...

...if they have got appropriate waterproofs for today's wet weather...

..whether the burgeoning colds they left with have gone...

...whether they got enough sleep...

And finally;

....why I'm turning into my mother...

The answer will present itself when I fetch them tonight. In the meantime, I'm assuming no news has been good news!

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