When it's cold, grey and wet outside, there's only one thing for it - and I'm not talking hitting the bottle - it's time to dress yourself happy!
Think about it. How do you feel when you throw on an old pair of tracksuit bottoms and a past-it jumper? Comfy, yes. But how would you feel if you threw on a fabulous, comfy and beautiful knit on over those tracksuit bottoms. Just that little bit better, right? Some clothes just bring joy. Whether it's a sequin skirt, which never fails to make me feel just that little bit sparklier, or a pair of leopard print wrist-warmers that just make every winter outfit that little bit nicer (and warmer), some clothes are just happier and more fun than others.
When I worked for magazines, I used to love dressing up. I'd spend ages in the morning putting together outfits until I eventually found the one that put a spring in my step and gave me energy for the day. Wearing something that made me look and more importantly feel good really did make the day just that bit better. And even more so if I was, more often than not, hungover (there were a lot of parties).
But, then I started working from home, had a baby, and another, and another, and another (I don't know what I was thinking either!) and over the years lost my style mojo. After many nights of not much sleep, I'd just grab the nearest most comfy things to throw on, which more often than not would be an old pair of tracky bottoms and a jumper. Did these make my day better? Not really. It also didn't make me feel particularly good about myself, and let's be brutal here - making an effort does make you feel better about yourself.
I'm a natural scruff. I'm also lazy and often won't wear mascara because I can't be bothered to put it on and take it off. But, and it's a big but, I feel much better with it on. And it's the same with jewellery and clothes. Yes, I'll still pull on the comfy clothes (how amazing are gym leggings these days!), but I'll make sure that the jumper is a nice one that makes me smile.
I'm also more at ease about spending a little money, on occasion, on myself. It's taken me a long time to realise that this isn't a bad thing. I'm not saying you should throw money away or shop like you probably used to in your 20s, but you also shouldn't feel bad about spending what you can afford on what you want.
Because it's important to feel good. Life can be tough and I don't think it is shallow to want to feel good about yourself in order to cope with it. Just pick the right colour, logo or pattern, and your outfit will (even if on a subconscious level) make you feel that little bit better. As will an arm full of bangles or a pretty pair of earrings. They just make you happy. And, at the start of a long winter, we could all do with a bit of that....
The Happy Edit
The Rock & Roll Jumper
These jumpers really do make me happy. Not only are they super-soft, slouchy and comfy to wear, the logo just brings joy. I had to keep one and have worn it three times this week. I'd probably wear it more if I could get away with it! Available in red, khaki, camel, rust and winter white, they are utterly fabulous and will have you reaching for it all winter.
Gold-plated sparkly huggie hoops, £25, TAE, Rock & Roll Jumper, £50, TAE, Mila tassel earrings, £10, TAE, Slouchy leather Bella bag, £170, TAE, Black tiered skirt, £39, Topshop; Star trainers, John Lewis, Girlfriend jeans, £49.95, Gap, Star trainers, £169, Air & Grace
Dasha earrings, £12.95, Thin glitter cuffs, £12, Rainbow jumper, £49, sparkly slipper socks, £19, Carmen cashmere jumper, Gold-plated starburst earrings, £28, cashmere wrist warmers, £48, Champagne Darling clutch, £65, leopard scarf, £18, Gold party belt, £36, sparkly glitter belts, £28, Bangle up bangles
The Leopard Dress
New in! This dress is just stunning and the perfect example of dressing yourself happy. Who wouldn't feel happy dotted in leopards?