Major changes coming along, not only here, but also in the weather. Did you know today marks the day on which the meteorological autumn starts? It's officially time to get out these snug scarves, burgundy and camel coloured coats and tights to go under our dresses - autumn has arrived!
But changes also will happen here and in my life - changes which are partly reason why I was so absent in the past. As I have grown in age and maturity (hopefully), I have decided that this blog, as much as I love it, is not what I want it to be and I appreciate and love all my regular readers, but I feel there could be more outreach, so I will make some changes to it and get back to you.
Also, I have exciting news to share with you - which also prod my career into a more professional direction. Recently, I was offered two positions as a freelance writer, which is perfectly exciting and I should rather enjoy working an increased amount of my time as a professional writer (sorry, I am currently watching Call The Midwife, which has some impact on my English).
But enough of these changes for now and back to autumn. When the air shifts and there is a nibble of cold tugging on our sleeves, there is an invariably interesting occurrence of a fashion melting pot. Yesterday, I was walking through the city and saw people with down-filled jackets as well as people strolling about in flip flops - a rather odd beholding if you ask me.
During the transition, it is important to balance your outfit - at least that is what I do. I would wear a warm jumper, but no tights yet - and probably even sandals if the weather allows it. It is important to let one of your body parts breathe a little because otherwise you simply sweat yourself to death. It is interesting to see who the autumn and who the summer people are. Summer people cling to the last rays of warm sunshine, getting out their summer dresses and Birkenstocks even though the stiff breeze already indicates otherwise, whereas the autumn enthusiasts already wrap themselves up woolly hats despite the still 25 degrees outside, tights and fur-trimmed shoes. The balance, however, does the trick and I will show you some of my transitional outfits I love to wear now.
One of my favourite pieces is my A&F linen jumpsuit which works fantastically in summer, but also in autumn when combined with a jacket and scarf and it balances the weather quirks of the best of seasons wonderfully.
Another transition outfit I love to wear is one the rather casual side. I love my "mum jeans" from Peek & Cloppenburg (I cannot recall the brand at the moment), a big-hole knit jumper and my summer shoes from Deichmann. It is pretty warm on the top, but still waves a hello from summer at my feet. Transition mastered!
This outfit is rather on the warmer side and perfect for a sunlit late September or October day (I, in fact, wore it in Luxembourg in October). It sports my Stradivarius skirt and white jacket - which I adore - tights and my Deichmann boots. I love the burgundy colour palette, which is perfectly autumnal and my white woolly coat which keeps the crisp October air at bay. And it is wonderfully fashionable as well - if you ask me.
In here is not only one outfit I love, but two - featuring my dear friend N as well. This is a perfect outfit for early autumn and I have worn it very recently when going to dinner with my man. It is a dress from Lily J, Deichmann shoes - which are very summery still - my H&M summer hat and a loose knit-wear jacket. A rather elegant outfit, but it combines the loftiness of summer and the stylishness which usually comes with autumn (for me at least, in summer I am terribly unfashionable). I do not know what N is wearing, but it is a wonderful combination of leather leggings, peep-toe sandals and a burgundy blouse - burgundy always works wonderfully in autumn!
Rather on the summer side again, but I absolutely love this outfit. With autumn usually comes rain and my lovely wellies (I will update the site when I know the brand, but I cannot recall it now and I have no means to check as I am currently in lovely Tyrol). With it, I style my Cath Kidston dress, which, combined with tights, works in autumn as well. Come rain, come shine - I am ready.
Embrace the loveliest of seasons and I am looking forward to inch toward pre-Christmas season with my transitional outfits - and I would love to see your transitional outfits, so post them here or on Facebook if you like.
With summer inching along and the days getting shorter and shorter, it is time to review our autumn attire and smile gently at the prospect of tights, boots, woolly hats and coats. Autumn, in my opinion, is the best season to be fashionable as it allows us - the less blessed women on Earth - to hide away our cellulite-ridden legs in tights, our short legs in high heeled boots and to armour up with leather bags and accessories.
But what is on for this autumn season and what should we look out for when hitting the shops (online shops in my case) to get our new autumn looks assembled? As one of the early yearners for autumn, I have already given my fall/winter season attire some thought and collected some trends to look out for this coming autumn.
1) Animal Print
Amidst the #metoo and Times Up movements gearing up in the past months, it is only understandable that fierce and strong animal print patterns are among the most celebrated trends for the coming fall/winter fashion season. Personally, I was never one for animal prints, until I realised (as with most trends) that the detail is in the how, not in the what. Styled correctly, animal print can be fun and it definitely underlines the independence and fierceness women seek to transgress in these times.
Moderation is a word that comes to mind when considering how to wear animal print. A bag, shoes or a coat suffice to make a fashion statement without looking cheap or overburdened. Also, the rest of the outfit should be toned down to make the animal print look even stronger. Never combine various animal prints as it looks like a confusing, convoluted zoo situation taking place on your clothes and it will reduce the "posh factor" significantly, slowly descending to cheap-town.
My personal favourite among the animal prints is the renowned leopard print. Zebra and tiger I would quickly associate with cheap styles and unfashionable taste, though if styled properly, it can also create a fierce and elegant look.
Why not try out this stylish autumn coat from Floryday to go with a red sweater, blue jeans and either knee-high boots (preferably in black or brown) or ankle boots? A divinely animally look brushed up with elegance, a sense for fashion and a peck of roar.
2) Poncho Comeback
According to distinguished designers like Isabel Marant, the all-too-well-known poncho celebrates a comeback this fall - so dig out your throw-overs (or blanket coats as they are fittingly called) and toss them over in pride. Ponchos and blanket coats are a fantastic coat-replacement in autumn - especially on those warm and glistening days of September and October where the cold is nibbling ever so slightly on us but the last rays of sunlight still make for a decently pleasurable weather - AND they look really cosy as well as fashionable which is a feature hard to get.
My personal favourite of all blanket coats will always be Burberry's monogram poncho, yet few of us will have the necessary quids to indulge in that kind of fashion. But do not despair, there are also some reasonably priced alternatives from Target, Zalando or H&M from about 15 pounds and up.
3) Floral Prints
Floral prints are an all-time favourite, regardless the season. Flowers make happy, the dense pattern slims the figure and it reminds of romantic and bucolic ways of living.
Thankfully this autumn, floral prints remain to be a must-have in everybody's closet and combined with tights and a leather jacket into a fashionable and girlish style.
In order to rock the floral style this autumn, you needn't dig deep into your pockets, H&M, Target or Asos offer a diverse range of fashionable autumn dresses with spring-like patterns which will transform well between the seasons with a pair of black tights, boots, a coat (or poncho) and a leather handbag. Voila, from beach dress to fall street wear.
For someone with some more coins in their coffers, an all-time favourite for floral patterns remains to be Cath Kidston with their signature floral style - most of their fall/winter dresses even have longer sleeves and are therefore perfect for the colder seasons. Who said flowers only grow in spring?
4) Plaid, tartan, check, you name it
Fans of Scottish patterns will be able to shop worth their money this fall/winter as plaid is one of the must-have trends to follow this fall - and what a wonderful trend it is! Primarily associated with lumber-jack shirts and heavy manual labour, it now embellishes skirts, coats, blouses and whatnot during this year's cold seasons, ensuring we look as cosy as we feel. Adaptable for a country style or urban fashion likewise, this trend turns out to be versatile, traditional and surprisingly elegant if matched with high heels, a black leather bag and an elegant coat or jacket.
The usual suspects H&M, Target and Zalando offer reasonably priced plaid-patterned clothes; however, my personal favourite are the plaid dresses by Forever21, starting from only 10 Dollars - or you could go all traditional and by an original kilt from Heritage of Scotland.
5) Fake Fur
With increasingly less real fur used, the cuddly companion seems to have a comeback in the form of fake fur. Fur, obviously, is a fantastic and fashionable way to keep warm during the cocoa-seasons and it now comes without a guilty conscience - which makes it so much more fun to wear.
Fake fur can line coats or jackets, but complete fake fur jackets are trending as well (sometimes with a leopard print!) and despite their limited function as a raincoat, it should at least provide enough shelter from the snow and cold. The same goes for fake lambskin, which immediately warms up and looks cosy and elegant - which is a feature hard to get in many fashion items.
Especially the thick, fake fur jackets go well with skinny jeans and knee-high boots or ankle boots and a bigger shopper (as small handbags drown under the predominance of the coat).
H&M are presenting fake fur coats in light rose colours whereas Target offers a wide range of fake fur and lambswool products, ensuring a cuddly fall/winter experience when going to the lantern festivals, carving pumpkins and sipping hot chocolate at the warming fireplace.
Regardless of what autumn has in store for you, these five trends will ensure you look elegant, stylish, cool and ready to take on the cold weather!
It is so hot at the moment that I am even transpiring at four o'clock in the morning, being catapulted in a mind-set of deep despair and desperation.
And with that, welcome back to Floating the Boat!
I know I haven't really announced a summer break, but it just so happened. I had a four-week job in the UK, which basically had me working 24/7 and I realised updating and blogging was not really within my time management (yeah, right...what time management are we talking about?), so I decided to stop fretting about it every day and give myself a little summer break.
Which is now over. Having come back from Britain with a ton of new thoughts and stories, it is time to steadily take up the reins and write myself in long awaited autumn and my dislike for summer is going to be one of the topics covered in this welcoming-back post, among the daftness of teens and my experiences as a freelancer so far.
I know everyone is, yet again, in a frenzy about summer, but I cannot emphasise my sheer loathing for this season, and why wouldn't I? There are plenty of reasons to hate summer and I can tell you some straightaway:
1) The heat, the unbearably, ever imposing heat. It has up to 36 degrees in Austria and London was the same, so I have literally been sweating for almost three months straight - THREE MONTHS!
2) The summer break. Sure, some people may think, "Oh my God, she is a student and a freelancer, she has a long summer break and can lie on the beach."
Well, it is true, I get a break of three months; however, being a student and a budding freelancer, I am
a) fecking bored out of my mind as there are neither assignments nor uni stuff to do during the break, really and
b) I do not have the money to go on a real vacation somewhere but am stuck in my Viennese flat with well over 30 degrees and no possibility to escape the heat.
3) The summer fashion sucks. Are you familiar with these feelings of flipping through a fancy magazine (OK, I am talking about H&M alright) and you see these gorgeous summer garments of silky dresses, short overalls, linen blouses and weirdly cut-out swimsuits and you think summer could be fun after all, but then you remember you are chubby, white-skinned and your hair bursts into a lion's mane after five minutes in the heat?
Well, 'tis my life and I am simply to fat, cellulite-ridden and pale to enjoy summer and the fashion that comes with it - quite contrary to autumn, that is. Any woman can look divine in tights, autumnal, darker colours and a coat which hides the rest to be hidden.
4) I do not function in this heat, my brain is literally fried and I cannot get myself to doing anything. Doing sports is simply stupid as sweat pearls are already streaming down your back without moving at all, so there is a real risk of dehydration when attempting to do a push-up in this heat. But also baking falls pretty flat during this season, baking cookies wrapped up in Christmas jumpers, Michael Bublé singing in the background is not comparable to opening a pre-heated oven in the middle of summer and fainting from the hot air emanating out of it. Also, cake is far too heavy to eat in this heat.
5) Nobody ain’t got time for that…Previously mentioned people who seem to share the belief students have a wonderful time during the summer due to their long months off are also forgetting that nobody is actually around in summer. Come exam season in June, we are deliriously happy at the prospect of meeting up at the river, playing games and going for a barbecue – completely denying the fact that a) nobody will be here as people go to crappy summer jobs, visit their families or actually have money to go on vacation and all plans evaporate to nothingness, b) you realise that your so-called “friends” you study with are actually only study buddies and you decide you do not really want to see them anyway or c) everyone only has a flat and no barbecue equipment, so barbecuing is ruled out.
And aplenty more reasons, but this should suffice to convince you I am right about summer.
It is specifically hard to endure the heat when having to work during summer and, without sharing any details because you know I do not work and tell, my summer job was quite intense physically as I ran a language and activity centre in Ipswich, England, which required a lot of running around, doing activities and going on excursions – at that in over 30 degrees heat! Additionally – and I do not mean to sound harsh here, it’s just kind of the truth – I worked with teenagers and I never really realised it, but teenagers are kind of daft. Sorry, not daft in an academic sense – I don’t mean to be offensive, bitter or of the kind of old person who goes like, “Oh my God, the teens from nowadays, no respect, blah, blah”, but I have to concede to this fact a little; however with the notion that I do not think it was better in previous times.
So what do I mean? I mean these creatures are so engulfed by raging hormones meddling with all aspects of their brain required to be a decently intelligent human being that they simply cannot be held accountable for their daftness. I can recall myself – vaguely – as a teenager and I was not the best example to be set, simply because I was bookish, didn’t like parties and boys grossed me out (except for Edward, of course, GO TEAM EDWARD). However, I was incredibly daft during that time as well and could be caught giggling to a boy’s stupid joke merely to get myself some boy credit, or dumbing down at school because we all know men don’t like women who are intelligent (is this a sexist notion? I do not deem it to be true for most men I know, but it is spoken everywhere, it seems…).
Over the past years when I worked extensively with teenagers, I realised how pitiful they can be and how I cringe inwardly when the girls toss back their hair, giggling with high-pitched voices, almost giving out their eggs for nothing.
Also, they all look the same nowadays, it seems. I do not know whether that was the case when I was a teenager (and I strongly suspect it was), but especially the girls almost exclusively look the same as if complying with a uniform unanimously agreed upon at some point of history. It is usually trousers to tight you wonder how they can continue breathing or – even worse – leggings. Always up to their bellies, obviously. Then, with that, they would wear belly-free tops, showing off this slice of skin in between their high-waist trousers and their short top, and it is all rounded off with sneakers – always sneakers. Then they always have long, flowing hair as it seems to attract boys the most, and a ton of make-up surprisingly well applied most of the times (I looked like shit when I made an attempt of putting on make-up as a teen). Some of those I have encountered even feature fake eyelashes on a normal day out, it’s alarming.
Boys seem to be a little less constraint in their fashion choices, but are terribly monitored by their crotches. Not much seems to be going on in their brains during their teens and usually when there is something stupid to do, they will do it. May it be riding a laundry trolley down the street, smoking in front of supervisors and then claiming it is an e-cigarette or throwing around food in a canteen populated by grown-ups. Simply stupid.
However, this is not supposed to be an offence at all. Actually, I feel sorry for teens who simply cannot help being confused, sexually aroused and off with their thoughts all the time when their bodies are going bonkers but then are being asked to behave like adults, concentrate on academic progress and being confined in every way possible instead of being given the choice to explore the world a little. I ache for them to live in a world where grown-ups help them learn respect instead of chiding them for not figuring it out for themselves, in which patience and intolerance for their needs prevail and where Instagram dictates how to dress, look or present yourself.
Yet, I feel I am quite happy at this point that working with teenagers is a chapter closing down for now and I can concentrate on other work experiences.
At the moment, I am not writing a lot of fiction but am rather breaking into freelancing as an editor, translator and writer, which is both frightening and rewarding, as I am enjoying this work a lot. I have thought about why freelancing is so rewarding, as actually often it is not. It is a world of rejection, frustration, despair and wasted time on assignments which will never see the light of day; yet, I have determined that flexibility is a key feature of my dream job and defining my own day, work ethic and input rather those features being imposed on me by someone else who requires me to work ten hours a day, merely to keep up appearances. I have recently had a job offer on my desk for such a job and I have to admit declining it was a rather intimidating choice, as it would have been a safe job with a safe salary, yet with the price to pay of feeling unsatisfied, incarcerated and unseen. I am not sure there is a salary high enough to justify that price, is there?
The plan to publish one of my babies one day (of course I mean my books, not to be creepy) is still up there and waiting to be fulfilled but I am sure the time will come and it will fall into place and finally make sense. And until then, happy writing (and waiting for rejection) and I am thankful for all of you accompanying me on this journey.
Writer. Editor. Blogger. YouTuber. Freelancer. Traveller. English fanatic.