Tuesday, 23 August 2011

A good clear out

I had a good clear out of clothes yesterday, producing five black bin bags full of clothes that are too small, too big, too old or just unworn for so long that it is time they grew up and left home. The magician who made this possible (left to myself, I would be discovered twenty years hence buried in a mountain of things that 'might come in handy one day' - in other words, a hoarder) - is called Moira Cox, Moffat's House of Colour resident. Some years ago, my mother and sister in Kent discovered HoC, to such good effect that my two daughters and I signed up for a full day of fun. For those who have never experienced it, the process involves an eye-opening session choosing the colours that do the most for you, - a game played by all present as each 'victim' in turn sits centre stage and has an endless variety of coloured silk scarves placed round their shoulders. These 'best' colours turn out conveniently to fall into one of four groups grouped for handy reference under seasons. For example, one of my daughters is 'winter', which is clear bright jewel colours, one is 'spring' - pretty pastels - and I am warm 'autumn'. It was a life-changing day for me, because I had got stuck in 'safe' black, which did nothing for me whatsoever. That's the other thing HoC does at the outset: decide whether you are basically a black and white person or an ivory and brown - I am the latter. Then you do your style, based on body shape and temperament - I am 'classic', which means no frills. You can also be helped choose makeup, accessories and so on, and this can be a continuing process to enable you to keep looking smart season by season to keep you shipshape. Suffice it to say that as soon as Moira left, I got online and two new tops, a long length cardigan and a pair of olive coloured trousers are winging their way through the post as we speak. I have started to write what I hope will be a funny book about going from the grower of the most unpopular tree in Britain to the proud possessor of three enormous wind turbines, working title: Enemy of the People or Out of the Frying Pan into the Fire, to be illustrated by Lizzie Rose, the Scottish landscape artist who has just completed the second year of a residency Documenting Change.

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