Thursday, November 08, 2012

Remembrance of Things Past.

Maxmara.

Earlier in the week I dialled Buterfield  8 like my muse E.T. but with a lot less panache. 
No, not the wrinkly E.T.  with the long muzzle who looks like he just crawled out of a torty shell, Ronnie Wood holds that soubriquet,  I mean  blog goddess Elizabeth Taylor.
I don't think I'll ever buy a belted coat again, I have three belted Maxmara coats and feek like a sack of rotting  spuds in every one of them.


I mooched along to the  Caledonia Hotel which has recently fallen into the affluent arms of  the Waldorf Astoria group.

Caledonia Hotel, Edinburgh,






Ooh that central area is  a bit of a mess,  I love the gilded banquettes and carpet but the whole design lacks cohesion, in the Caley bar too there is a schizophrenic mind at play.
Still, I'll be back, the champagne/seafood bar has  a certain siren call which whispers of bubbles, salty crustaceans and good times.



Slanj Kilts taxi - gratuitous tartan shot.

Hamilton and Inches, Royal warrent holders.

The old/new juxtaposition is romantic as  befits a grand hotel, it is touching to stand in the lobby and imagine that a century ago, this was a railway platform and that the stalwart Hamilton and Inches clock on the wall, was and still is, five minutes fast, lest any Scot, God forbid, be tardy for their train.




It will soon be Remembrance Sunday.
I hope that all of you will spare two minutes to remember those who fought and died for democracy and freedom and those who continue to fight.
I bought my poppy from an old soldier earlier  on in  the week, he stooped proudly in his uniform, his medals embellishing his jacket like a sentence. 


The road from Glasgow to Edinburgh is paved with poppies like Flander's Field. The Iron Horse boldly sports a poppy breastplate and the Pyramids along the motorway are each stained with the blood stained bloom.



 I feel a spot of baking coming on this weekend, 
 I quite fancy lifting our spirits with these pretty little snowcapped buns, 

pic: Van Mildert, recipe here

then again, this unctuous Caramel Shortcake is calling to me like a 
caramel coated carnival barker.

Hope you all join me in a little indulging this weekend!

80 comments:

  1. I noted one of my work colleagues, who is an officer and gentleman (in all senses), was wearing a poppy today.
    You can't go past a MaxMara coat, in fact, I just can't go past MaxMara and all its associated labels. I am sure you look very ET in which ever MM coat you decide to shrug on.
    If you are baking the caramel shortcake, give me at least 30 hours to get there to have a piece.

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  2. Claire: I looked at the caramel shortcake pic again and let out a groan, best book a flight now.

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  3. You really know how to turn a phrase! I know what you mean about belted coats; I gave up on those (or belted anything really) years ago. It's a gorgeous coat though. Never met a MaxMara I didn't like...

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  4. Belted coats always make me feel like I am wearing a bathrobe.

    I miss the Poppy Appeal, here in France they commemorate by wearing the Blueuet (cornflower) but lord knows where your supposed to get them from, I have only seen dignitaries wear them during the parade in Paris, which is surprising considering how much French blood was spilt. Caramel shortcakes however are available at the local supermarket, complete with tartan and thistle packaging...bet there not as good as yours though.



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  5. Yes I'll never buy another belted coat, I always feel as if I'm in my bathrobe too, once the woman in the corner shop actually thought I was out in my dressing gown, I went off that coat quickly.

    Dash. - oh I didn't think you'd have caramel shortcake , I'm crazy about Carmel sorts my favourite treat.
    ,

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  6. Tabs I agree with the belted coats, I have a MaxMara that I won't be wearing this year, in the photos I find the belting very irritating, I think the hood on it adds to the bathrobe-aspect as well.
    I think if a coat in this silhouette didn't have a fur collar a wide belt would save it, but leather belt + fur collar= too busy.
    That picture of Liz Taylor! Gorgeous! I see she's left the belt off of her coat, she wouldn't be one to fuss I'm guessing.
    The poppy is very big around here, we all wear them. We're going to a special mass for our lost soldiers on Sunday, the veterans will be there as well.
    I'm making marmalade this weekend, adding in Scotch for a treat at the finish!

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  7. Belted coats and I are solemn enemies. We do not speak.

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  8. Bathrobe. Can you wear it without the belt, perhaps get buttons done for it? The ET photo is gorgeous. I have a Max Mara black baby alpaca coat (no belt) with a large, drapey hood. Need to get it shortened to a wearable length for LA.
    Love the poppy symbol, so beautiful and poignant.

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    Replies
    1. Kathy: that was the other hotel i was going to check out for you.

      I cannot find a decent tailor here, they all butcher everything.

      Delete
    2. Just commented about that - I think I prefer the Balmoral. Thanks for checking it out.

      Delete
  9. CREME CARAMEL Right, so far appears I am the rebel with a coat, since I vastly prefer belted. When I moved to outer layer climes thought they would be fussy, but help me avoid the "enveloped" look, even tied casually in back for shape. The E.T. is an inspiration conundrum, so much beauty, talent and sass, but all those heartbreaks and such a sad and lonely end. As for weekend re-treats can I swap you and Dani some cakes and marmalade for Pecan Bourbon jar pies (testing holiday bring-alongs)?
    P.S. Went to your corner of the world in Imax last night; Ulysses right heroic note for Rembrance Week too.

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    1. P.P.S. Meet you in the bar of that Caledonian (it's a "New Scotland" coal mine over here).

      Delete
    2. Get Fresh: pecan bourbon jar pies? On the google!

      Yes, you are the only belted rebel so far, they make me feel ugly eery time I put them on.

      Delete
    3. I love the MaxMara grey coat! and I also like belted coats too...Elle

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  10. OMG I thought it was a glamorous housecoat at first glance,I had a coat same colour/fur collar as ET.....I felt like a million dollars in it back in the days of elegance (ok I admit I am 97 tee heee have you seen that weird ad on TV with the woman saying age 97??)

    These old soldiers turn up each year selling their poppies they stand so erect and proud,we must never forget,sadly the wars/deaths continue.Ida

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    Replies
    1. Yep a bathrobe I paid a fortune for - er three times over, no more belted coats, my mum had an mzing coat like that too I wish she had kept it for me.

      No, I haven't see that ad yet.

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  11. Well, if you can't wear a belted coat, what hope for the rest of us? Surrounded by poppies here - I hope there never comes a day when people forget. Go for the caramel,I'm hitting the Cadbury's Chocolate Buttons!

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  12. Belted coats can be tricky-they are not figure flattering to anyone with an extra pound (avoirdupois not sterling). A winter coat has too much fabric to be merely gathered about the waist, undisciplined and untidy-it wants to be tailored and dignified-it is not a mere afterthought but an important garment.

    That's what my coat told me, but maybe it has an over-inflated sense of self.

    That MaxMara looks great on you. You have the figure to wear a belted coat.

    Vanessa

    ps thank you for 'avoirdupois'-a word I learned here on B&P that has become a favorite...

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    Replies
    1. Vanessa: I like your coat, it seems an excellent conversationalist.

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  13. Oh, and thanks for the peek at the Caledonia.

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  14. What's not to like . The first shot looks gorgeous.Can't wear the bathrobe look. Waist is too thick. Love the tartan cab.Beautiful Remembrance Day photos.

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  15. I am sorry - I think you look smashing! But then I always do!. Remembrance Day is very bittersweet as it is the anniversary of my mum's death. I get too weepy now to go watch the soldiers because of that and my dad's health, but I wear my poppy proudly!

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    Replies
    1. WMM: Oh that must be really tough for you, it's such a sombre day as it is, I get terribly weepy too watching all of the old men.

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    2. Let's hope this year, the Duchess of Cambridge can avoid laughing and grinning like a maniac during the ceremonies.

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  16. you are all things elegant tabitha. i was just thinking this morning how much i'd love for my old coat to have a belt and here you are wishing the opposite.
    you look amazing in yours! and yes, i feel some baking coming on too.

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    1. Ha, I'm sitting in sweats and Uggs just now but I am off out tonight - and I won't be belting my coat, I'll be flapping and freezing all the way.

      Some folk can carry off belted coats but not me.

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  17. if this is what a sack of rotting spuds looks, like, please sign me up. i would love to look as gorgeous as you!! <3

    phiphi's blog

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  18. Is it too Wanna Be Catherine Deneuve in the 70s to tie the belt behind the coat? Hmm...

    And I agree with phiphis, I want to be a sack of rotting spuds too! ;)

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    Replies
    1. No, just too bitter outside to go out like that, alas.

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  19. Lovely sumptuous fabric of those MM coats...belts don't suit me either. I am too plump and far too short.
    You on the other hand are exquisite...as is Liz in that picture.
    She wore her chemise to her advantage in A Cat on a Hot Tin Roof...she just oozed sexy.

    What a fabulous iron horse sculpture and that decorated veteran. We are sporting poppies here and lots of parades and events are planned at the cenotaph and various venues.
    Let we never forget...

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    Replies
    1. She was wonderful in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, her bust and waist were incredible and I don't think she was corseted in that one.

      Delete
  20. Displaying the poppy on the ‘Heavy Horse’ sculpture is brilliant. As always, I’ll be receiving my poppy from an elderly gentleman sitting in front of our local grocery store.

    Your coat is beautiful, but I don’t care for belted clothing, not even bathrobes. They are always coming undone and not for the right reason…alas ;)

    ‘YES’ to the champagne, shellfish, and especially that tartan taxi!

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  21. You look great in your maxmara coat, just carry yourself as if you were ET(the lovely lady, not the alien).

    Marilyn

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  22. Oh my gosh you look glooorious in that coat!! What a soft dove grey. And I'll bet its much more comfortable having the belt - and that belting action is a great exit line too, wherever in the world you are. I opted for a defined waist trench rather than the Burberry-type belted ones as belted was TMM (too much material) but it is def not as swingy and put-on-able (please excuse technical terms.)

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  23. Well, I think the belted coat looks gorgeous on you, Tabitha! I do understand how it could feel a bit bathrobe-like, but I really do not think it looks that way at all in your picture.

    The photo of Elizabeth Taylor is stunning. What a beauty she was, and oh so glamorous, too.

    Our family is extremely grateful to all of the Veterans who have served so that we can enjoy freedom. So many sacrificed they have made. Both of my grandfathers were Veterans, as was my husband's father so many, many years ago. We will never forget.

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  24. I love all the big poppies! Remembrance day is very dear to me and this year I have the privilege of laying wreaths on behalf of two committees. Funny tho - I chose a belted coat to wear to the ceremony...

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    Replies
    1. SP: Do you manage not to tear up? I'd be a mess doing that.

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  25. Love that Liz-like coat on you. It looks like a Max Mara? Very glam. Love Butterfield 8 too.

    Years ago I visited a friend in Palm Springs. When I asked why there were paparazzi and Japanese loitering tourists outside she said it was because Elizabeth Taylor lived next door. (!) So (with her permission) I crept out the back and stood on a garden chair to peer over the fence. (SO ladylike.) Her garden was extraordinary Tabs. There was at least 30 gardeners there (I kid you not) fussing over the borders. You have to love a woman who loves gardens as much as she does fashion...
    xx

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    Replies
    1. She was English after all.

      ---Jill Ann

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    2. Yes her rose garden was very important to her, I've visited her house, it's small ( for a film star) but lovely.

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  26. The coat looks wonderful. Not much call for such coats where I live even in winter. I'll buy a poppy...love the poppy on that big horse. Anzac Day is our really emotional memorial day over here, I get teary watching the old fellows too. That hotel looks gorgeous. I'd love to visit Edinburgh one day.

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  27. I fervently sported my poppy with pride before Her Majesty The Queen and Prince Philip yesterday. She looked positively radiant in a soft pink ensemble, and was quite the belle of the ball.

    I love the crisp autumnal weather with big soft coats and woolly pulleys.

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    Replies
    1. Curator: I love it from now till January 1st, look out for my annual depressive slump in Jan/Feb which are such depressing bleak months.

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  28. The the only thing out of place in the photo of you in the gorgeous coat, is the trash can on its way to being emptied. You look great, but if you're sure you don't care for it any longer....
    Wearing my Poppy proudly here in Vancouver.

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    Replies
    1. Having looked twice, E. T. Isn't belting hers so why not just chuck the belt??

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    2. Well styled Life : It's cold here, an open coat would be useless in the biting wind.

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  29. In th US, Veterans' Day (as we call it) is not what I would call a huge big deal. People put their flags up, and that's about it. I do remember that my dad, a WWII vet, used to wear a poppy, way back when I was a kid. But I never see poppies any more. A couple of years ago, we did a trip to London with our girls, and I was surprised and impressed to see all the WWI memorials, complete with poppies. It made me realize how different the British experience was, compared to the American experience. After that I did some reading about WWI, including the series of mystery stories set in WWI-era England, by Jacqueline Winspear, called the Maisie Dobbs series.

    Oh, and regarding the coats....I only wish I could afford a Max Mara coat. I walk past the store and gaze longingly at the window displays. Such beautiful coats! I might even save up for one, except that I live in Houston, Texas, where one can go an entire winter without actually needing to wear a coat. Sigh...

    ---Jill Ann

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    Replies
    1. Jill Ann : It was an American woman who invented the poppy, what a pity it's dying out there.

      Houston? Oh there's no way you need a heavy coat, I can't bear coats, I'd love to live in a climate with mild winters.

      Delete
  30. Now about that coat. . .you don't want a tailor, you want a Dressmaker. And in your neck of the woods are some of the very best "petite mains" outside of Paris. Search under bridal couture rather than tailoring. Although, my mother had many lovely wool bits made for her in Edinburgh years ago, so there’s gotta still be some around somewhere. That coat just needs some loving attention paid to its girth of yardage (lose the wrist tabs, Tabs) and you'll wanna wear it everywhere because it has lovely bones. Weather aside, one doesn't actually wear one's coat anyway, but rather tosses it 'round the shoulders when making dramatic exits and/or bending into the Bentley (heated, of course). Well, I do anyway.

    Queen of the Clean Up Parade

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    Replies
    1. Q of CUP,
      A coat with "lovely bones"? I've never heard that before and upon second glance I have to agree regarding wrist tabs but I think Tabitha looks smashing so please insist she not give up the belt as us randy gents do fancy a shapely silhouette.
      Long may you reign!

      Delete
    2. Oh no, quite the oppo - hold onto the belt! Madame Tabs wears all with fab aplomb. I only suggest a feminine hand to gently bring out the lines of the garment to be more in tune with Madame's shapely proportions. As Adrian always said: “Any woman can wear anything, it's all in the proportion.” And a little entrance/exit drama never hurt a girl, either. You can quote me on that.
      Q of CUP

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    3. I'd like a sworn affidavit as I've incited my share of exit drama occasionally with a not-so-gentle feminine hand directed my way.

      Delete
    4. Queen of the Clean Up - oh you are so right about those wrist tabs, now that you have pointed them out I'm thinking, how ugly, and yes I know someone who just had a wedding dress made - and I didn't make the connection about having them tailor the coat!

      GS and QOTCU - very funny exchange!

      Delete
  31. I don't mind a belted coat, but it has to have a properly fitted a-line skirt to balance out the proportions. That is an entirely theoretical assessment, of course, because I sadly have no need of coats here in Perth (belted or otherwise).

    How come I never saw the good bits of Glasgow and Edinburgh when I was in Scotland? Must have been because I was trapped under house/pub (?) arrest at some desolate alehouse in Airdrie.

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  32. Tabitha, your deft hand is in especially fine form today. That pic of Heavy Horse (heretofore unknown to me) with the old soldier is perfect and your sentiments well expressed and deeply appreciated.

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  33. I agree the Caley does look a bit of a mess, with those geometric patterns on the carpet and the prison cell that surrounds the banquette. I'm sure by contrast you would have dazzled in your Taylor-esq belted coat, so my eyes would have been quickly averted from the offending decoration. Stayed there once when I was visiting and before I'd bought a flat in Edinburgh. Cavernous rooms, but again the Louis Quatorze (ish) furniture clashed with an odd colour choice, if I recall.

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    Replies
    1. Columnist - prison cell! It's all a bit of a jangle isn't it?

      Delete
  34. A sack of spuds? I think not, dear Tabitha, you have such a teeny tiny waist, and the coat looks brilliant to me, sooo luxurious with that fur collar! I for one am far too short to carry off a belted coat, mores the pity, but do admire from afar. The iron horse is amazing, especially with the giant poppy. Poppys for sale everyone round here - lest we forget ..

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  35. I suspect E.T. would have coveted that coat - and worn both belted and not. I always enjoy the glimpses into the traditions and heritage of Scotland - and all the places you visit. Your tribute to Remembrance Week is touching - I think I'll go looking for some red poppies this week - and remember ...

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  36. Take me away in that taxi-I would have a ball. I've never worn
    belted coats-maybe in a dream.

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  37. I am always rather torn on Remembrance Day and ANZAC Day. Both grandfathers served, one of them in both world wars. And all the boys from that family came home (damaged, but alive) which is nothing short of incredible. But neither joined the RSL, neither did the marches. And it's always in the back of my mind - not a week goes by but I don't think about what the wars did and the people (and animals) involved. So while I understand the symbolism of a dedicated day, it's not really enough, too likely to be hijacked by jingoism, too facile. This is not to detract from your post at all as, sadly, too many do need to be reminded. And by heavens, the Iron Horse is magnificent!

    On a much less sombre note - yeah, I here you on the belt business. The jacket itself needs to be shaped to the waist for a belt/sash to have any chance of working. I've a long leather coat where I just loop the belt around the keepers and ignore it. I tell myself that it is much more insouciant.

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  38. Its not the coat so much as the room La Taylor is standing in, that grabs my attention

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  39. Did you see the green sheep at the pyramids? That coat looks beautiful but I am like you when it comes to belts. I love the look, there is an elegance to it that I just can't achieve.

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    Replies
    1. Anon: No? Completely missed that!

      Delete
  40. lovely photos! and i like the coat!
    i wish we could wear a coat here in singapore

    xoxo
    style frontier

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  41. Lovely blog <3
    Check out mine sometime if you want :))
    xx

    http://aimerose.blogspot.com

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  42. I cannot wear belted coats either. I love the way they look, but on other people. My bosoms are too large for a belted coat; I look like a walrus in one. I stick to tailored, crisp pieces.

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  43. I'm just way too short to wear a belted coat. I bought one similar to yours but thankfully, the color flattered my skin tone but otherwise, I just looked like a .....spud.

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  44. O.M.G.
    I finally saw IT!!!! Skyfall!!!
    That must be one of the top 5 Bond movies......the well-written script, all actors with outstanding performances...and ... the beautiful, scenic Scotland! How blessed you are to be in such a place as that :) Love love all of it...and now, you show us this. sigh.

    tack så mycket

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    Replies
    1. Hello fellow Northerner! Wasn't it brilliant? I had to staunch tears twice, it's a really raw Bond this time and even mire British than usual, I loved it too. And The Tennyson poem ? Teared up at that too.

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  45. Love your blog, very interesting and entertaining. Your coat is GREAT!

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  46. Each of your posts make me even more excited to come to Scotland this week!

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  47. Those snow-capped cakes look delightful but I can't get the link to work! Any chance you could direct a lost gal toward the right way?

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    Replies
    1. Rats, it has gone awol, it was on another blog wil go sleuthing, I want to make them too.

      Delete
  48. love the soldier and his medals, what a proud chap!

    three maxmara coats? seriously jealous as i lust after one, just one please

    cheers
    debra

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  49. Love your images. I went to Scotland and I went until Ullapol and I totally fell in love with your land and people.

    Maybe you would like to follow each other!Love from Spain.
    http://myfashionbreak.blogspot.com.es/

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  50. I love seeing Edinburgh in blogs! Which has, incidentally, never happened before. It's making me homesick. Afternoon tea at the Cally - or cocktails....mmmmmm

    Nice post about Remembrance Sunday.

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  51. Liz Taylor is gorgeous and love the coat on you. As for belting.. it depends on how it fits. I have a trench (an essential for all the rainy days here in Seattle) that has a belt. Sometimes I use it.. sometimes it gets a tie in the back.

    That caramel shortcake looks delicious!

    xx
    leslie

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  52. I am late to this post but thank you for the post on Remembrance Day. I always take the time to stop and reflect.

    The MaxMara coat is beautiful on you, you are most definitely channeling Liz in that one, but I can see how the belting might be cumbersome after a while.

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