It was 8am on a Saturday morning and I was twirling in front of the mirror in a very fancy cocktail dress that only ever leaves the house if I’m going to a very fancy party or a wedding.
‘Going somewhere?’ Mr Smaggle said as he walked past.
‘I’m just seeing what it looks like with these shoes.’ I kept twirling in the dress and I realised I didn’t want to take it off. So I didn’t. I wore it for a few hours sitting on the couch and crocheting while watching Saturday morning TV. It was fucking fabulous and I loved every second of it.
Dress by Montique
Shoes from Melissa – I was *this* close to ditching these in my last move and I’m so glad I didn’t. They’re my only pair of very serious high heels and I just think I need a pair of those handy at all times.
Sometimes, you’ve just got to do the thing that makes you feel good. Practicality and functionality are like totes trendy right now and I’m definitely on board with minimalism and conscious consuming. However, I do still love a bit of fancy fuckery.
1. Wear a fancy dress for no damn reason at all
You don’t even need to leave the house. Just dress like a queen while you’re at home watching The Great Australian Bake Off. Why not? I’ve become a lot more practical with my day to day style in the last few years but I used to wear skyscraper heels and actual fascinators to work when I was in my early 20s. How boss is that? Sometimes if I’m feeling a bit ordinary, I wear something extraordinary and it always makes me feel ace.
2. Go to a big, fabulous chemist and try all the things
Do you ever find yourself with 20 minutes to kill at the shops and you go to the chemist and have the time of your life? I never have enough time in chemists, I love them. I like going to the hair section and looking at all the curly hair products. The make-up section where you swatch all the lipsticks like a beauty blogger. The vitamin section where you wonder what the hell ginko Biloba is and whether or not it will change your life and you suspect it would. I rarely buy anything I don’t need at the chemist but reading all the labels and rubbing the lotions and potions into my hands is one of my favourite ways to spend a cheeky thirty minutes.
3. Read a book on your lunch break
If you for some reason stopped reading fiction books as an adult, I implore you to get back into it immediately. Something clicked with me at the end of last year and I’ve been reading a book a week ever since. I usually read for an hour at night in bed and sometimes during the day on weekends if Mr Smaggle and I are out for lunch. This month I’ve started taking proper lunch breaks and reading for a full thirty minutes. I used to spend my lunch breaks on Facebook but Facebook is my job so doing that on my lunch break is kind of stupid. So now I lock myself out of my phone with Forest app and read my book. It’s made my afternoons so much more productive and it’s the best way to take yourself properly out of work for a break. If you’re looking for book recommendations there are some here and here. Reece Witherspoon’s Book Club is also a great place to find books.
4. Invite some friends over for a board game
This is pretty much all my mates and I do but if I go for a weekend without playing a board game with some mates, it feels like the weekend was wasted slightly. My latest favourites are Codenames, Gobby and Baboo which is a card game my bestie’s family play and it’s way too complicated to explain in the written word but it’s bloody good fun. Yaniv is also a great game, particularly if there’s only two of you. Mr Smaggle and I travel with a deck of cards and if we’re at a restaurant and the food is taking ages, we’ll play a few cheeky games of Yaniv. Get into board/card games dudes. They’re awesome.
5. Go for a walk without your phone
The internet is my job and therefore lots of people assume I’m on my phone 24/7. That’s a load of bollocks. I frequently leave my phone at home if I’m ducking to the shops or going for a walk to get a coffee. If I’m going to the movies, I’ll almost always leave it at home. Even if you’re just at work and you’re ducking out to grab a sandwich, leave your phone in your desk drawer. It’s so refreshing to just stand in a line without frantically checking Instagram or Facebook.
6. Watch something ‘on purpose’
Mr Smaggle and I work most of the time, so if the TV is on in the evening we’ve often got our laptops out. Several times a week we force ourselves to put our laptops away and watch something ‘on purpose’ where we sit properly and pay attention. No phones, no laptops, just cups of tea and excellent TV.
7. Have a DIY beauty evening
Every now and then I buy a little kit of face masks, moisture packs, cuticle treatments and hair masks and just go to town. I’m not sure it really does much but it makes me feel good. I like being all slinky and shiny.
8. Make a big, ridiculous cake because you can
I’m not big into eating cake but I’m big into baking. Love it. One of my favourite sites ever is Bakerella. She’s the genius behind cake pops. I also love The Sugar Hit and Katherine Sabbath. Most people tend to wait for special occasions and birthdays to go balls out on making a franken-cake but sometimes if I need to just busy my brain with something not related to self-improvement or crochet, I get baking.
9. Organise something you love
Your stationary drawer, your make-up, your cupboard full of clothes, your sewing box or your collection of My Little Ponies. Most people have a collection of something and spending the afternoon nurturing and loving those items is so good for the soul. Sometimes when I have a spare hour, I’ll organise my yarn cart instead of crocheting. I’ll put all my hooks back in their correct cases, I’ll make sure my gauge square and measuring tape are in the right spot and I’ll throw away those weird little piles of yarn that just seem to keep on piling up.
This outfit was worn for a few hours of crocheting on the couch because why the hell not? After a super busy week, I’m looking forward to a chilled weekend of crochet pattern writing, gardening, having dinner with some friends and reading. Very splendid indeed.