Sunday, December 30, 2012

Auld and New Lang Syne

I'm a little late to the blogger party, but here I come, breathlessly running into the room with petticoats flying! I've enjoyed being introduced to so many amazing women through blogs, commenting often and posting photos on Facebook. But I wanted to really take part, share more photos, have conversations - so I invited myself to the party!

To introduce myself properly, here are 10 things that describe me and my late-bloomingness:

1.                   I live in Oregon, and have lived in the Pacific Northwest US most of my life.
2.                   My husband is British, and I lived in the north of England for 10 years.
3.                   I got married at 39. I became a (step) grandmother four years later.
4.                   I have an Etsy shop - please go visit!
I warn you, I will be promoting it from time to time.
5.                   I'm not into gardening, cooking, religion, sports or vampires.
6.                   I quit dying my hair when I was about 48. I get more compliments on my gray hair than I ever did before!
7.                   I got my bachelor's degree in Art History at age 33 and my master's at 48.
8.                   In my ideal world I would be a freelance editor of art history books, dividing my time between a craftsman bungalow in Seattle and a mews house in  London (and a third place that actually gets sunshine). Sigh.
9.                   In reality I work full-time in administration in an engineering firm. Sigh.
10.               Ten years to full retirement!

And now without further ado, here is my New Year's Eve outfit. 

 I'm not even sure if we'll be out at midnight, but this will be fun for dinner. I tried it two ways – with belt and without. 

 I think it works better with the belt, but chime in if you have any thoughts. I bought the jacket (duster?) for a wedding a few years ago. It's reversible!

 The jacket and gold top are from Coldwater Creek. Black leggings are Hue, and the sandals have been around for several years. I think I bought them in Chester, England - brand name is Shani.

 The necklace with green beads is from World Market. To match the green necklace I'm wearing an emerald ring that my husband bought me a few years ago, second-hand. I love the sculptural setting. I made the bracelet and the bee pendant, which is in my Etsy shop (

 Gosh, it's fun to dress up! I'm linking up with Visible Monday at Not Dead Yet Style. I'll get me a widget as soon as I can figure THAT out.

New Year’s resolutions? I don’t think so.


Megan Mae said...

What a fabulous jacket! I think your real and imagined life both sound so exciting. I hope you have a very happy new year.

Re your comment about my hair: Admittedly, I do about the same as I did before the cut - wash, brush, air dry. Some days I forget to comb it. Lol! I should try styling it differently - curls or braids. I am just really low maintenance.

Crazy Ravens Studio said...

With grey hair as nice as yours, of course you would get compliments. Here's to grey!

Patti said...

I really enjoyed learning more about you, Val. And your dream job sounds dreamy. I got my Masters at age 40 and married at 47. Let's hear it for us late bloomers! I like your outfit both with and without the belt, no bad choices. Thanks for linking up with Visible Monday.

Bella Q said...

Hello lovely Val- happy to see the blogging bug has bit you! You look lovely in you NYE outfit- that jacket is rich and luxurious - perfect for New Year's Eve get togethers.

Congrats on the new blog- I added you to the blogroll already.

Widget = easy. Grab the image from Patti's blog and go to blogger layout, add Picture, and upload picture. Then there's a spot for you to add Not Yet Dead Style's url. Add it. Click save, and Voils! You're hitting it big time. xo! -Bella Q

Sheila said...

The bee pendant is lovely! I like the jacket done up - and what a fabulous jacket that is!

Welcome to the blog-world, Val! Count me in as a new follower. :)

Val Sparkle said...

Thanks, Bella!

I'm trying to get the widget, but when you say grab the image am I copying link location or copying image location? Then in Blogger layout it doesn't say add picture. I can add a gadget, but it's not liking anything I paste in there. I must be missing something. If I can figure this out I can add the Shop Secondhand widget, too!

Anonymous said...

Val--It's good to "meet" you. Sounds to me like you have great "bonafides" for a blog. I'm envious of the art history background! I agree it looks better with a belt. Happy New Year.

Anonymous said...

Welcome to the blogosphere!
You look SO lovely in your New Years Eve outfit!
I do like it with the belt.
Happy New Year!

Tamera Beardsley said...

Welcome my dear! What a wonderful introduction from the fabulous Bella!!! Welcome!!!

miss donna said...

welcome welcome welcome! blogging is good for the soul.

and i'm with you - the jacket belted looks really good! enjoy your NYE night out and i look forward to seeing more of your ensembles.

Lisa said...

Welcome to the party. That jacket is pretty incredible!

The Small Fabric Of My Life said...

Thanks for visiting my blog. I have loved getting to know you. I ove the opulent tones to your outfit.

sabine said...

Welceome here, Val. At last I can give you response and thank you for your kind comments.
Your today's outfit is marvellous, i like it with and without the belt. Such a rich fabric and wonderful colors. And your bangle with the little bees is a treasure, i love it.
Happy New Year!
(who has still 11 years to full retirement!)

Déjà Pseu said...

Hi Val! Fabulous outfit, just enough sparkle. I think the jacket looks great either way. It IS fun to dress up, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

I stumbled on your blog while looking for ideas for "fashion over 50." I've toyed with the idea of a blog, but....what would I say?? Maybe you'll be my inspiration! Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

You look wonderful! I love it belted the best. I'm happy to see you posing with a style blog now. I don't have very many clothes but it's still fun to style things different ways and post pictures. There's so much warmth and support out here, it's very addictive.
Thank you for visiting me and commenting on my blog too Val.
Happy New Year!!

Val Sparkle said...

Got the widgets! Patti pointed out the one little thing I did wrong. Now there's no stopping me!

Sue @ A Colourful Canvas said...

Hi Val, Congratulations on your new blog! I'm excited for you. I like the jacket both ways, but would probably wear it without the belt if it were me. I also love your pendant and look forward to checking out your Etsy shop. Promise us you'll share bits of art history with us as we go along.

Sue xo
Happy New Year!

~julee~ said...

Yay! I'm so glad to see that you now have a blog!

Loved the introduction. I am inspired by women who go back to school later in life. I'm 37, graduating with my BS in May. I am proud of this accomplishment for a million more reasons than I would have felt graduating in my early 20's, if that makes sense.

Your outfit is lovely. I love the jacket - the inside is equally as gorgeous!

Happy New Year!

LPC said...

Welcome to the blogging world. Promote away - there's always room for well-done self-announcement:). And I vote no belt. I like the shape of the coat on its own.

Pam @ over50feeling40 said...

You look amazing and I do love your hair! Hold onto that dream you never know what can happen!! I look forward to more fashion fun with my blog friends in 2013!

Debbi@SheAccessorizesWell said...

I like it best belted. It looks fab on you. You do have the prettiest hair, I envy you.
I am glad you are joining the blogger party. The over 40 group is so wonderful and supportive. I look forward to learning more about you in the coming years.
Happy New Year to you.

Adrienne said...

Welcome to the party! Blogging is so much fun. Love the bee on the pendant. Your hair is a beautiful color really like it. I think I prefer the jacket not belted but that doesn't mean it is better just that I like it that way. Will be checking back to your blog now that you are here in blog a sphere..

Connie said...

Is your name really Val Sparkle??? How lucky are you! Seems like you have some fun stuff up your sleeves. I am now a happy follower.

Misfits Vintage said...

I love the jacket with the belt best! Happy new year - welcome to blogland!

Sarah xxx

Sacramento Amate said...

Happy New year!!!

grunge-queen said...

Welcome to the blogoshpere! I married at 41, have a BA and MA in English lit, and was an editor until I married a Brit and moved to the north (west) of England - lots of similarities between us! I like the coat belted too - which did you choose? Happy New Year! xo

silvergirl said...

Found you through twitter actually
I look forward to getting to know you in the new year
Good luck with the blogging adventure, I know you will have as much fun as I have had!

Joyatri said...

I just noticed that you have a blog now. Thanks for all your comments on my blog.
Welcome to the party. We have a lot in common. I also have a B.A. and M.A. in art history. I was a museum curator for 15 years. My boyfriend, who I met 3 years ago, at the age of 49 (my age, not his, he's younger) is British and lives in London. I split my time between Cambridge, MA and London now.
I stopped coloring my hair in my early 40s. I am thrilled to find another blogger who rocks gray!
I am not into any of #5 in your list, except I do like to cook.
I also have an Etsy shop for vintage items.
That coat is gorgeous. Brocade is right up my alley.

Shybiker said...

It was fun to learn more about you with the info in this (old) post.

One thing I want to mention. I've realized, as I get older, that people seem to be either "young" or "old" in their attitude. Surprisingly, we can often see that in their faces. You definitely have a youthful attitude, despite the grey hair (which I share). You seem very much like someone I'd gravitate toward as a friend IRL if I had the chance to meet you. For now, I guess I'll just have to settle for reading your blog!