If you can't dress up at New Year, when can you?
A bit of glamour never did a girl any harm and this new year, I had a rare chance to really dress up.
Christmas, all in all, has been a bit flat this year, what with our internet going down for a whole month, one party on Christmas Eve being cancelled, and myself coming down with a cold on Boxing Day, and thus unable to go to a second, so it was nice to get an invite for New Year, if only to remember what other people looked like.
I enjoy frocking up, as it's such a change from my gumboot life, which is normally spent in jeans and sweaters. But the requirement for 'ballgown', along with the knowledge that the ballroom itself might have no heating at all, while the dining room would probably be sweltering, certainly meant getting my thinking cap on.
My normal evening attire is pretty easy - since most of our socialising involves dinner with friends or an occasional dinner in a restaurant, I tend to go for a skirt, dress or pants in black wool or velvet, coupled with an interesting top. But 'ballgown' is another matter.
Galloping to the rescue came a vintage dress I bought last year from Ebay without any idea of when I'd actually wear it - a fabulous thing in tooled blue irridescent lurex. It's totally over the top, but how many opportunities does a girl get to doll up with some real sparkle in the course of a year?
More importantly, it was also a: roomy, so I could get serious thermals on under it, and b: princess-seamed, so there was no waistband - nothing's worse when you're sitting down to a seven-course gourmet meal than to find yourself sliced neatly in half. As you might guess from my red nose, the temperature was an issue, but luckily, only I needed to know that under my dress and warm shrug was also a long slip, fleece-lined tights, thermal socks and knee-length boots.
All the other girls looked splendid, I must say - H in her black lace 50s gown and pink shrug, looking like a Dresden shepherdess; a fashion designer in a vintage 70s green gown and wrap; and even two friends in identical 30-style black and white draped halterneck gowns, exhibiting considerable cleavage (brave indeed for women in their 50s, but one was so perishing cold that I ended up lending her my wrap for the evening).
Oh la, back to normality...today it's the usual ski thermals, poloneck sweater, gilet and Uggs. Time to pack the girlie frocks away until next Christmas...