“Don’t you call me pudgy, portly or stout
Just now tell me once again…
who’s fat”

Hey all,

Guess I’ve faffed about enough on the interwebs (t’interwebs? #Northern) and I should get myself into gear. Hmmm. So much for that new exercise book feel to the New Year eh? Here I am, prattling away as per. ๐Ÿ™‚

How was your Christmas? On Planet Jones, the big day went very well. The next few days, though, were rather busy with lots of too-ing and fro-ing as we did the visitor circuit. To be honest, I was glad of a sit down at the end of the week. That and the delight over deciding to book some extra holiday to extend the Christmas break.

I’ve been enjoying the Christmas spirit – and the cakes, chocolates, dinners, etc – this year and I think it’s caught up with me. I won’t say that I’ve put a lot of weight on, but certainly enough for it to alter my figure (such that it is). Yeah, I’ve got a paunch and I don’t like it. I’ve already taken the dog for a long walk and took the kids to the park to run off some of my gut points and some of their energy off. Fingers crossed on both fronts. Next week I’ll be back at work and as we’ve pretty much gone through all the tasty snacks we bought for Christmas, I should be on safer ground. Sure, there’s a few boxes of chocolates, but as they’re posh ones, they’re not to be scoffed, but savoured.

It being January, the sales are upon us. I noted that some of them started earlier this year. Certainly there was the Next sale on Boxing Day and a few folk, thanks to social media…. or is it anti-social media if you’re ignoring the people in the room with you? :-), had got up early to snag some alleged bargains. Next isn’t for me, but we’ll come to that later on.

Now, you know me. I like a bargain as much as the next tran – sorry, man – but Boxing Day? Plus…. there hasn’t been much that I’ve seen this year, that’s made me want to dash out and buy stuff. I’ve got my biker boots from October, I’ve yet to see any dresses I really like and I don’t need any – dare I say this?! – new clothes for big nights out. Hell, for Invasion last month, the only thing I needed was a little black vest to go under my blouse. It’s not so much a case of make-do-and-mend, more, meh really ๐Ÿ™‚

So, Next? Am I a label snob? I guess not. Not when I’m happy to shop at Dorothy Perkins, New Look. H&M or Debenhams. I don’t consider the latter names to be better. The only reason I don’t shop at Asda or Primark is that I don’t tend to see items I like. I suppose it’s more that I’m not a fan of the image Next presents…. or one that’s associated with it.

Please, don’t get me wrong, I think some of the clothes are fab. Indeed, a (trans) friend often wears their clothes and she looks great. I guess it’s more about me and what I like, rather than a failing of the store per say. I think what puts me off is when folk dress head to toe with a particular brand or fashion. Today for example, I was out with the kids at the local park in the city. Cue a series of middle class types (myself included) standing about. Some of them where the full on Yummy Mummy or Casual Dad. I’ll leave you to assign clothing to those stereotypes, but if you can’t be bothered, just thing beige in the megawatt range. Maybe there’s some crazy inverse snobbery going on, but I’m not post-modern enough to be able to wangle that into a blog post. ๐Ÿ™‚

But moving on from my view, what about you, dear reader? Do you prefer the high street, on-line shopping or a more boutique experience? Are you someone who tries on in store, or are you more a take-away lady, preferring the comfort of your own home, against the hot lights of the changing room?

Take care,

[ Today’s lyric: Fat by Weird Al ]


  1. Welcome back to the new term Lynn. Feels like we should have school ties tied around our heads bandana style. In fact, could bandana style be the new gangnam style? I digress.

    Happy New Year – fortunately one is already podgy, so Christmas eating makes small difference really. That is actually the answer: be fat and you don't notice more. But January sees the resumption of the weight loss resolutions.

    In terms of shopping, I have done all and everyone of those things. I have bought on-line and tried at home. I have been in store in male mode and purchased and more recently in female mode. I obviously prefer female mode shopping, but I have to say male mode shopping, when you are in the right frame of mind can be such fun. Nothing better than telling the shop assistant that the clothes etc that you are seeking are for you. They love it – I think it actually makes their day more interesting, so they become super helpful. And some really fun conversations have ensued. I normally pick a time of the day when they have time on their hands to help. When I've done that, I've ended up trying stuff on in the changing rooms and also on the shop floor. I don't care if other shoppers don't like the colour of my bra and knickers (joking!). But I've tried on coats, jewellery, jumpers etc on the shop floor.

    But I guess from early on shopping where I was frightened, embarrassed and scared of being recognised, I learnt what I liked and make quick work of selecting. Whereas on-line or going in girl mode allows more time to meander and to think more.

    But shopping is just much fun – nowadays I just find it such a stress reliever…

    1. Not sure about the ties around the head, business. It all sounds a bit Lord of the Flies. ๐Ÿ™‚

      I'm with you on the stress relieving front…. well, provided, I'm not against the clock and shopping for someone's birthday. That can be a bit of a panic if you can't find something they really want. Otherwise, and as you say, it can be fun to just wander between the racks and see what catches your eye. I guess that's the better part of the real world when it comes to shopping. You can't (obviously) touch the goods (oo-er) via computer.

  2. I hardly ever buy anything new (apart from underwear), which makes quandaries about which shops and brands pretty much irrelevant. Offline I use retro and charity shops; online it's mostly EBay – in fact I get most of my stuff on EBay. The risk is that sometimes things don't fit and sometimes they're dreadful when you get them, but everything is so cheap you can afford to throw a few things away.

    Recent purchases: red leather jacket, ยฃ10 from Baklash on Market Street (a great shop Lynn!); faux suede/leather/furry coat, ยฃ25 on EBay with BuyItNow (I might have got it cheaper if I'd let the auction play out, but I wanted to make sure of it right then – it's gorgeous).

    1. I've walked by Baklash a few times. There's another retro shop down on Hockley too. The latter's a bit pricier, but the t-shirts look very cool.

      I've not shopped at either for female clothes; maybe I should. Thanks for the tip.

  3. Nothing under the sun quite like the live try on for me Lynn. Online is too hit and miss. Drab shopping feels just a little sketchy. Oh, I am comfortable, but I always get the sense that I am creeping out the ladies with whom I am elbow to elbow with.

    But shopping en Femme, filly of a different color altogether. The bright lights and 360 mirrors tell you all you need to know about the garment. Beyond that, I have met so many nice shop assistants and shoppers in the way back of the shops.

    Give me the hot lights, anytime, everytime ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I don't mind on-line for a few things, but only if I have to. For example, Very.co.uk isn't in the shops, so no choice there.

      Well, if the other folk are less than welcoming, that's their problem, not yours. ๐Ÿ™‚ I don't think I've had any bad reactions from sales assistants. Surprise, once or twice, but helpful in the main and I guess being polite and up front helps. I guess it would be nice to hear from someone in retail. That way we'd hear the other side of the story.

  4. For me the clothes are more important than the label. I have some Mexx, and a colleague was very kind to give me some Claudia Strater. But it's mixed with brands like H&M.

    As long as I like it I'll buy it ๐Ÿ™‚

    I think my luckiest shopping day was when I had a ticket to the Mexx warehouse sale. 60 to 80 euro skirts and jumpers for 5 euros. Even if you include the 20 I spent having a couple of the skirts altered as they didn't have my size it was a damn good deal ๐Ÿ™‚

    Glad your Christmas went well, I know what you mean by over eating over the period. I am not getting on the scales until the end of the month ๐Ÿ™‚


    1. True about the labels. Sometimes inexpensive items can be better than so-called premium brands.

      Mrs J bought a Mexx cardigan many years ago (tie front, slight sparkle) and it's kept very well IMO. Oddly, it's one of those pieces that stays with you too. I'd love a Desigual dress, but I can't justify the price…. plus the sizes aren't very generous. ๐Ÿ™‚

      As you point out about mixing up brands, I think that adds to making your own look from a range…. rather than doing the head to toe thing.

      Oh and good luck with the running and weigh in at the end of the month!

  5. Oh, don't talk to me about putting on weight at Christmas! Chocolate has definitely been my downfall. Back to the bunny food for a while then….. ๐Ÿ˜Ž
    (Carrots are almost palatable when eaten with Houmous!)

    1. Ooo, houmous if there's more garlic in it than you can shake a stick at. Yes please!

      We're through the first box of Hotel Chocolate and that's based on the two of us having two choccies each a night.

      Guess, it'll be Boots Shapers Salad for the next few months ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. *mumbles something about trying to lose weight this year*

    I do a lot of clothes shopping in Asda and Tesco because they are open 24 hours and I can browse late at night when I do my food shopping and avoid the scrums.

    Of course, as a bit of a heifer I also have to make time to visit Evans and Yours, and a few online places I've been shown (like this place – http://www.curvygirlsclothes.co.uk/)

    My partner loves Primark, but I hate the hordes of rude and agressive shoppers our local branch attracts.

    1. Not really tired Tesco, but that's more because (unusually) there's not one nearby. The local Asda is okay and we get a lot of general school stuff for the kids there. Mrs J had had PJs and some nice biker boots. I keep my eye out, but in the main it's rare they have something in stock that I want. Funny, because the magazine often has done nice things in.

      Heifer? No. Sugar Plum Fairy…. in a goth stylee. Our local Evans branch has gone as it's merged with BHS. Mind you, BHS had to do something IMO, as hardly anyone was shopping in there pre-reboot. Now the Nottm branch has Evans, Dotty Ps, Wallis and I think some youth brand….but the name escapes me.

  7. Who says chocolate should not be scoffed? I scoff at thee! A chocolate has not been invented that I cannot gluttonize myself on! Please!!! They have not even invented a box that is less than a single serving size… as far as I am concerned!


  8. Snack chocolate? Snaffle, scoff and nom by all means….. However, there are some choccies that need to be savored target then devoured, IMO. Two chocs each alongside a large mug of tea or hit chocolate and it's destination heaven for the taste buds (and avoiding a stop off at Pig Con One ๐Ÿ˜‰ ).

  9. I know I'm a bit late to the comment party. Although I have read the ramblings, Lynn, I'm doing a catch up with my thoughts and comments.

    I could be called a label snob. I have five Karen Millen dresses along with tops, skirts and shoes from KM. It's not that I bought them for the label, but I love the designs, they fit me well and most of all they make me feel fantastic when I wear them. Having the outlet store up the road where most (out of season) items are less than half price, is a big advantage. Of course, I shop at other stores too but they don't quite 'do it' for me like KM wares do.

    So to answer your question. I'm very much a high street and even more a boutique person. I love that one to one synergy that I can get with some store staff which makes the shopping experience so much pleasurable and more likely to get the clothes that are the best for me, whether it's want I originally went in for or not.

    I far prefer trying in store. It's part of the experience. I even try items on when in guy mode. I did buy one KM dress without trying it on first in the shop. I was in the area and I had popped in to see if they had the dress I'd been after for a while in my size. However, earlier that very warm day I had been running 10 miles cross country, so thought they may not appreciate if I asked to try the dress on firstโ€ฆ. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Late? I trust you have a note, Ms Williams? #TeacherMode ๐Ÿ™‚ Sorry, old gag.

      I think snob is a harsh word and to have a like for one item/vendor/venue over another, doesn't – at least in my mind – make you one per se. Snubbing things rudely (which you haven't) that don't fit into your standards, however, maybe that would.

      I can't say I've had the pleasure of a KM dress/shop, but you live in hope. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Oh and top marks for not trying the item on post-jog. ๐Ÿ˜€

  10. Usually the changeing rooms have long since been locked/ had a few trolleys put across the entrance when i'm in the George section of ASDA, I do often have the area to myself (sometimes briefly joined by a bored security guard). Primark does some nice value items though when i'm there its always busy.

    1. Our local Primark is a bit of a scrum… and that's before you reach the mosh pit that's the tills. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Next time the guard's following you, wait until he gets close and hold a dress up against him. ๐Ÿ˜›

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