We’re having a great summer here in the UK with lots of sun and blue sky so I’m wearing frocks a lot, which is unusual for me as skirts are my first love.  But autumn clothes are being featured in the fashion magazines and sales have started in our stores.  Yes, it’s August so let’s start thinking about winter!  Err, no!  In fact, apparently, we’re just about to have a heatwave in the UK.  Fashion media, stop!  Most people do not want to even begin to think of winter!

Yes, this is English weather at its finest, with sun and very little cloud, but a coolness to it all that lets you breathe.  However, yesterday, I was going out to lunch and I knew we would be sitting outside with our sun-loving friends, but it was that soupy humid heat that we often get when there’s no breeze.   And, oh boy, did I learn my lesson about fabrics!  Because at some point I need to think about what I’ll be wearing in January when I go to the Caribbean, and it won’t be a pretty thing that just happens to be made of, or includes, polyester.  (Also if there’s anything missing I should think about it now not in December when everything in the shops will be made of wool!)

Yes, I spotted this almost beachwear dress in a sale costing all of £7.


It looks lovely and rather suits me.  It’s floaty and I like the fact that it let’s you see the legs.  But I bought it in a shop with excessive air-conditioning, and didn’t factor in being in the actual sun.  I tried it on in my bedroom which was also cool, and it was fine, went out into the garden and ooof, I nearly melted in the heat as it’s not made of cotton but an artificial fibre. With the sweat pouring off me, I took it off pronto.  Hmm, I might wear it in England on one of those cool sunny days, or maybe in the evening when it’s cooler.  Btw, not cooling down in the evening, is something I can never get my head round.  Last time I was in the Caribbean it took me about a week to realise I needn’t carry a cardi around with me in the evening.

So I then put on this dress, but again it’s made of artificial fibres, so it wouldn’t do for this Sunday, but it will be great for when I visit my cousin for lunch when we will be sitting inside! Btw, the bedroom was so cool I also had leggings on for this pic, and excuse that black thing that keeps the dress on the hanger- I’ve cut it off!



You know I think there are two types of people: the ones that sit outside in the sun at every opportunity; and the ones that don’t like sitting in the sun and even feel a bit wary of eating outside.  Btw, my friends put up a sun shade so it was fine, but another friend came round for coffee recently and said, with a look of relief on her face, ‘I know you’re not going to make me sit in the sun’, and we both looked at each other with complete and total understanding.   I’m willing to try, never say never and all that, but heat gives me a headache (migraine) and the sun gives me cancer (skin) so, end of argument as far as I’m concerned.  And yes, I know I’ve booked to go to the Caribbean but i) I won’t sunbathe, ii) it’ll be lovely to see a bit of sun in our grey winter and iii) I’m going to visit a friend (see below).

The third dress I tried on was full of creases as I’d pulled it out of my hot weather/holidaying abroad/ beachwear bag and put it on un-ironed.  I think I just about got away with it, the not ironing it, I mean.


It was perfect as it’s a floaty thin cotton dress that flaps around the ankles and draws in a breeze!  And reader, it was bought new nearly twenty years ago and worn in the Caribbean in 1999.  Here I am wearing it all those years ago!

St Lucia 1999

I shall post another picture of it worn in 2017 with the same people! Hmm, I see I have the same pale arms, and also I’d just had a migraine (not a good traveller) but seriously, if ever there was an advertisement for ageing I think it’s this pic and the one above it, as I look so much better now I’m 70!!!!

That’s all for now, but do let me know if you suffer when people expect you to sit outside in the sun!

With love

Penny, the frugalfashionshopper

P.S.  Many apologies for not posting for 11 days but events (good ones) got in the way.

P.P.S Today is Monday so I’m sharing with Catherine Summers and her #iwillwearwhatilike session, which is about beachwear!

And finally, I’ve written a new post for My Other Blog – on class, actually! If you want to read it click on to the logo at the side-bar or, if on a phone, at the bottom of the blog.







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13 thoughts on “Summer clothes – a new dress that wasn’t so good, a second-hand dress that’s for best and a very old dress that was just right!

  • 15th August 2016 at 2:48 pm

    You are spot on Right about the Oldest Dress being the Best…what a fun post. Enjoy the steamy weather of Late Summer. Here, after 2 months of 100 degree days I am so, so ready for Fall. 🙂

    • 16th August 2016 at 8:17 am

      Hi Jeanne. 100 degrees, oh wow! I can see why Autumn must be so welcome when it’s that temperature. In contrast, here in the UK if there’s a bit of sun we want it to go on forever!

  • 15th August 2016 at 3:16 pm

    Gosh! Age certainly suits you. You look younger now than you did then. You must blog your secret. Also the dress has certainly done well.

    • 16th August 2016 at 8:22 am

      Thanks Mary, yes, funnily enough I haven’t worn the dress all that often, as it hasn’t been hot enough in the UK, so I think that’s why it’s done so well. And the way I look now – well I think that freedom from work does give you a second wind and a chance to reinvent yourself, which I think I’ve done!

  • 15th August 2016 at 3:56 pm

    Love the last two dresses Penny. You really suit red.

    • 16th August 2016 at 8:24 am

      Thanks so much and yes, going white which is what I’m doing now gives you a chance to wear colours you wouldn’t have before 🙂

  • 15th August 2016 at 4:31 pm

    WOW that third dress looks great, 16 years on! The first floaty one is my favourite. I used to adore sunbathing and sitting in the sun, I still love hot weather but I prefer to be in shade now.

    • 16th August 2016 at 8:26 am

      Yes, I think the green dress is one of the oldest dresses I have, although I’ve still got my wedding dress on a hanger at the back of my wardrobe!

      As for sun, yes, I have to remember I also sunbathed a lot in the past, but not now. The trouble is that at the first sight of the sun so many people in the UK rush out into the sun and can’t get enough of it – I just don’t share that enthusiasm. Ah well, we’re all different and we should tolerate others enthusiasms, but I do think about the skin cancer thing.

  • 15th August 2016 at 8:57 pm

    Yes, Penny the last dress has it and not just because it’s made of cotton. It looks lovely on you.I nearly melted in Spain recently even though I made sure that almost everything I brought with me was made of cotton.

    No, I don’t sit in the sun if it can be helped; I’m scared of skin cancer.

    Have a great week,


    • 16th August 2016 at 8:33 am

      Hi Veronica, yes, cotton for me in the Caribbean I think! I needed to be reminded of this. As for all this sun worshipping – this is a good summer with plenty of sun so everyone wants to sit outside as much as possible. I’ll do that as long as I’m sitting under a sunshade.

      Hope you’re having a great holiday x

  • 16th August 2016 at 12:35 am

    I think it’s great that your wearing the same dress you wore back in 1997. And it looks even better now. But you are also right about fabric. Cotton breathes. Acrylic doesn’t. I’m fine in the heat but once the humidity creeps in, I’m done!
    Bonaparte went to the pool with his daughter and granddaughter yesterday while I opted to stay hone and write. I honestly cannot take the late summer heat when it gets soupy!
    And to top it off, I opened up a magazine yesterday that was chock full of fall and winter clothing. I despise that so much. It is freakin’ summer. The weather is balmy up to the end of October. Stop rushing the season!
    BTW, you hair is looking mighty swell!!!

    • 16th August 2016 at 8:42 am

      Hi Catherine

      Yes, humidity is really the pits as it makes everything so heavy. The thing is a sunny day can be a rarity in the UK but this summer we’ve had lots of sun so obviously when you go round to someone you’re expected to sit outside. As long as it’s not in the full sun, I’m OK but quite a few of my friends will pull their chair round to sit in the full sun – err and eek!

      Thanks so much about the hair – going white but slowly over some time, maybe more than a year. Will rely on not going too pale in the face in the winter – actually thinking of a spray tan in the winter – woo hoo and why not!

      Reinvent yourself as you age – yay! xxxxxx

      P.S. How are you and your investigations about your hair? Actually putting my medical (nurses) hat on I’m not sure about thyroid as this I think would make your hair thinner all round, not patchy but still strong in other places like you are – must be hormonal though in some way. Keep us posted on this very important subject xxxxxxxxxxxxx

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