Sunday, 7 March 2021

Supporting Others Wherever Needed

I had an unusual situation this time home recently with put many things into perspective for me – It’s a long rambling post so grab a cuppa !



We have lived in our home by the seaside in the South West of the UK for the last 25 yrs and have had the same family next to us all that time.

Mother and Father who have 3 boys, who are all part of a very pleasant, tight knit family.

 

The youngest lad (22) has some mental health issues and is unable to work, has mood swings and is very solitary at times, which are compounded with him and the whole family finding it very hard to cope during the covid lock down situation.… so that’s the back story and setting the scene.

 

We have never had to discuss my dressing with my neighbours. I tend to be discreet when in my home location as it’s not something that I tend to share with everyone, but I don’t hide it away. I go out often and leave dressed from home, but just pick my time and don’t dawdle.

 

While I was away at work, the youngest lad has popped round to see my partner a few times for advice on minor injuries (my partner has first aid skills) and my partner realised that he really just wanted to chat to someone about something that was worrying him – however my partner is not comfortable in supporting mental health issues as this is outside their skill and comfort zone so deferred him to his mental health team.

Later that day his mother came round and asked to chat as the lad had confided in her that he likes to crossdress and wanted some advice about how to go about it, as he was looking to buy expensive clothes, shoes, a breast plate etc., with money he doesn’t have, and the family can’t afford … 

Apparently, the next door family have known that I dress for many years and have often seen me go in and out but just accepted it as part of life!

 

Needless to say, when I got home from work a few days later, I was able to have an open and frank chat with him on his thoughts and reasons for dressing, his expectations and dressing history. He confessed to self-harming and dark thoughts, with worry about not being accepted or ridiculed. 

This was followed by a long chat with his mother. 

One of their main concern was how would the father take it.

I advised them to keep things realistic and not to rush into things and not to spend a fortune on ‘inappropriate’ clothes from specialist shops.  I recommended that he and his mother visit charity shops for practical cheap clothes that fitted him and shoes rather than online glamor shops. I also offered to introduce him to a local TG group that I have been associated with for many years after the lockdown restrictions are over. To finish up I strongly advised him to speak to his mental health team about his moods and dark thoughts. 

 

A couple of days later I had a sit-down talk with the father, (who I discovered has also had also known all about my dressing for several years) and explained the situation about the youngest wanting to dress. The father was totally relaxed about the whole thing and took the ‘my child no matter what’attitude which was very humbling. I was never part of a supportive family, so this was a wonderful thing to see.

Since then, the young lad has had a vast improvement in his mental health and has stopped self-harming, he has been attentive to his mother and his new baby and helping more at home. He has bought a couple of dresses with his mother and a wig, and we are going to have another chat when I am next at home. It's very early days yet but hopeful this may help in many areas.

 

For me, it’s been an amazing situation in that my neighbours had known that I dress and have seen me going out numerous times and have not batted an eyelid, but had enough sense to ask for help in supporting their son who was in a bad place in a situation that they had no experience in.

 

We are all role models for the people we meet as you never know who may have similar interests, or who are going through some inner turmoil about their gender identity.

 

I go out and about dressed often and meet many people from hotels, restaurants and shops, to giving lectures and advising about TG in the workplace; but everyone I meet could be someone in this situation, who needs some help and guidance. 

So being proud, polite and professional helps put the TG community in a positive light to members of the general population.

 

Sorry that this has been a rambling post – it’s just something that I feel should be shared at this time when the whole world is having mental health issues compounded by Covid 19 and many are unable to express their feminine side as often as they would like.

 

Hugs 

Dawn


Covid Management 



Tuesday, 29 October 2019

The Summons

 
I was summoned to the Managers office this week .. and asked to shut the door . .. Gulp! 



My mind was in turmoil as to what I had done wrong, was I being moved to another platform, had there been a complaint about my care, .. all this flashed through my mind in a nanosecond as I slipped in to the office … my anxiety crept up another notch when I was asked to sit down and pull the chair up to the side of the desk … 

As you may know, I work on an offshore oil production platform in the North Sea as a nurse (platform medic) and have been on this particular platform for over 13 yrs. We have recently had a change in the platform management team, with a new platform manager joining the company and assigned to the work with us. 



I have been out and proud on the platform since I arrived here and tend to take my Transgender status for granted, its just ‘normal’ for me and I get on well with the platform core crew as well as the vendors and visitors.
However, even though I am out and everyone knows I am Transgender. I tend to dress in a somewhat androgynous style with unisex green overalls and pastel coloured tee shirts, along with my dyed shoulder long red hair and thin shaped eyebrows; so I’m not exactly a shrinking violet then! Heels and skirts are just not done on an oil platform and not appropriate for my situation. 



Back to the office … my anxiety and paranoia were working overtime and I was sitting rather uncomfortably on the edge of the chair waiting for whatever came next… 
The new manger was a large, macho, rugby fan who had a commanding aura about him that encouraged you not to question his decisions.  

‘I understand that you are Transgender’ he says … with me taking a breath worrying what is coming next …  ‘…and would like to know how you would prefer to be addressed …’ asked  my manager… He continued with ‘I have never worked with someone who is openly Transgender before and know very little about it … so I don’t want to upset you in any way.’

Needless to say the wind was knocked out of my sails and I took a few seconds to recover my composure and explain my relaxed tolerance to how I was addressed as I presented mostly male due to my name being that on my contract etc.. with a strong feminine lean. 
I was asked how I balanced my life between male and female time, about my partner and how they dealt with things, and my own preferences and how that fitted in with my work and leisure time.  

What followed was a 15min discussion about how he perceived my conduct to be extemporary and professional, giving declarations of full support from the manager in however I wished to present myself. 

He used words like ‘pioneer’, ‘ground-breaking’ ‘complete person’ and ‘role model’, complementing me on my work ethics and my managing the balance of being transgender and professional in my conduct on the platform, which he sees as one of the most macho work areas possible, where very few Transgender people work. 
I was told to let him know if I had any issues with transphobic comments or bullying as he would not tolerate these in any form. 

Happily, I was able to explain that I had phenomenal support from the core crew team who often defended me when new people made uneducated comments about my gender status, and that they were all comfortable enough around me to have some light hearted banter without meaning anything detrimental. 


So, what was perceived as a potentially worrying interview by my paranoia, turned into an amazing offer of support in all areas of my work and private life, and a request for more information on the subject, to help him give better, informed support in the future. 

I was a little emotional after and had to take a minute to absorb what had just happened and reflect on the issues I had in the past where I was subject to a ‘constructive’ removal from a post due to an unsupportive (transphobic) manager, and how I was being offered support without asking or prompted. 



This event just goes to show that you never know where support will come from, or when, or how. It was an amazing but humbling boost to my personal and professional life from a source that I had least expected, in an area not renewed for its sensitivity but truly welcomed. 
I hope this gives some hope for others who are not in such a good position as myself, and shows that there are great managers out there and you never know where support may come from when you need it most . 

Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Trans Women in Sport - BBC Documentary with Martina Navratilova

Martina Navratilova 

Martina Navratilova presented a BBC programme that debated the inclusion of Trans athletes in elite sports, and showed the body of research that is being undertaken at Loughborough university into transgender and the physiological affects of hormone on strength and endurance.







The study is over five years and will explore the pre-hormone period, transitioning period and post transition period, with a compressive testing of various blood levels against strength, flexibility and VO2 max with a comparable study of non-transgender individuals.

Other sports people in non-athletic fields were included and motorsports driver, Charlie Martin, was very good at highlighting areas where male, female and transgender can all compete in the same arena.

Charlie Martin 


At present, the evidence points to a marked reduction in strength and endurance in transitioning from male to female with in a few months of commencing hormone therapy. However there are cases of intersexed individuals (such as Caster Semenya) that are being reviewed to assess the validity of the restrictions that have been imposed.

Caster Semenya 


My Thoughts 
I thought that the program was reasonable as it showed the plight of Trans athletes and sports people, and gave a lot of time to the research,  but as expected it could not give any insight as to the compromise that will have to be made if there is to be a ‘level playing field’ where Trans Women can compete in what is seen as complete ‘fairness’ against Cis women.


The programme seemed to be attempting to recover some credibility for Ms Navratilova following her unguarded comments on Trans athletes and it seems to come across that she is genuinely upset that her words caused so much anguish, and has taken steps to make amends.
worth a watch and points to ponder.

See BBC website for more info - ‘’ The Trans Women Athlete Debate ‘’

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m00069nr

..............................


PS - 26.07.19 - BBC news report 

It will take female athletes "being thrown under the bus" at Tokyo 2020 before changes are made to transgender rules, says ex-swimmer Sharron Davies.
International Olympic Committee (IOC) guidelines state that transgender women must suppress testosterone levels for at least 12 months before competition.
But in March, Davies and others wrote to the IOC calling for more research.
In Tokyo, Laurel Hubbard of New Zealand could become the first transgender female to win an Olympic medal.
The 41-year-old weightlifter won two golds at the Pacific Games earlier in July.
After Samoa's Commonwealth Games champion Feagaiga Stowers missed out on a medal, Hubbard's participation was criticised. 
An Olympic silver medallist in 1980, Davies - who said she has had no response from the IOC since writing to it - says the body is conducting a "live experiment".
The Briton told BBC Sport: "I find it extraordinary that [Hubbard winning medals] is where we have to go before the IOC open their eyes.
"I'm positive things will change but the problem is we will be throwing females under the bus before it does change."
Transgender women in sport is a hotly debated topic, with former Wimbledon champion Martina Navratilova and transgender cyclist Rachel McKinnon among those who have entered the discussion.
Davies believes that reducing testosterone for 12 months before competition does not represent a level playing field for female athletes.
She says that despite those guidelines, transgender female athletes retain biological advantages gained in puberty. 
However, some transgender women, such as masters track cycling world champion McKinnon, say reducing testosterone in their bodies results in "radical physiological changes".
The IOC did not respond to BBC Sport's request on whether it would change its guidelines for the Tokyo Olympics, but said it was "working to develop new guidance" to help international federations (IFs) shape sport-specific policies and regulations in relation to fairness, safety, inclusivity and non-discrimination."
It added it was "committed to furthering inclusion, without discrimination based on gender identity and/or sex characteristics" and "is also concerned to ensure equality for women and their empowerment across sport".
  • 'The IOC is not interested in what athletes have to say'
Davies, two-time Olympic champion Dame Kelly Holmes and marathon world record holder Paula Radcliffe - with the support of 60 other top-class athletes - wrote a letter to IOC president Thomas Bach in March asking for the body to look further into the "residual benefits" of being a transgender athlete.
But the lack of response means she does not expect anything to change before the Tokyo Games, which start on 24 July 2020. 
"We've had nothing, not even a polite letter to say thank you for your interest or your request and we will look into it," she added.
"It just says that the IOC is not interested in what athletes have to say. I find this so disheartening when sport should be run for the athletes. 
"I think it will take some situations at the Olympics and people being very distressed with what they see before we see any changes. 
"Once we start seeing well-known female athletes being beaten, then people will start standing up and understanding the situation. It will be a shame because it should be about the sport, fairness and the best we can be."
The IOC said: "Our approach to providing guidance on participation is based on an ever-evolving area of research and learning" by consulting medical, scientific, legal and human rights experts, the IOC athletes' commission, the IOC women and sport commission, IFs, and national governing bodies.
It added: "Our guidance will be subject to periodic review in order to take account of relevant developments in the area, in consultation with all stakeholders concerned."

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/49110775

Thursday, 13 June 2019

Life in the Fast Lane

The Green Team
Nurse Wyvern 

I have a full time job on an oil platform in the North Sea as a Nurse (platform medic) that has been documented here in the past, but I also have a part time job as an Occupational Heath Nurse Advisor, where I advise on how to support individuals who have illness or conditions that may  affect them in the work areas, and help those who are off work get the right support and ease them back to work when deemed fit to return. 

Occupational Health is the interface between people and their working environment, where potential hazards are assessed and mitigated, exposures are measured, and preventive measures are designed and imposed. 

These two sides of my professional life came together recently when I was asked to give a talk on offshore occupational health to the ‘Association of Occupational Health Nurse Practitioners’ study day. 

The Association has a facebook forum that it uses as its main information and communications focal point and I am registered there under my female identity, as I don’t have an account in my male persona.
This has often been of benefit to the Association as I am able to advise on transgender issues that some practitioners come in contact with in their work areas and professional practice. 
So I planed to give the presentation en-fem, as they were expecting to see me there from the forum advertising. 

Bleak Spot Camping 


The Study Day  

The study day was arranged by one of my collogues who is the occupational nurse manager for Williams F1 - a formula one race team, and had secured four other speakers who were to give a discussion on various topics such as travel medicine, the legal aspects of Occ Health update and review new research. 

My day stated out well as I had driven from home in my Landover and found a lovely spot to camp nearby with some stunning views over the country side next to some racing horse gallops. 
After a light breakfast I dressed in some grey wide legged trousers with a wool grey roll neck top, purple shoes and my favorite Jager short purple jacket.  
The impression I wanted to give was ‘smart professional’. 

The short drive to the F1 headquarters was fine, but I had to negotiate the early morning rush hour traffic, but eventually found the main gate and was ushered in and directed to the car parking area. 
The site was large and impressive. The buildings were all ultra modern with great views, and the car park was full of interesting cars of all makes, becoming of the workforce intertwined with speed and technology  - my Landover was the polar opposite of the general theme ! 

I was met at the conference center by one of the hospitality team and directed to the area where we were the event was bing held and met some of the others who were attending. 
It was lovely to put faces to the names of people I have been working with on the forum site for several years and be accepted as one of the peers. 
My Fem side was not even blinked at when introduced, it was just taken as part of me and totally accepted. 

.... and still going after an hour ! 
Me waffling again....
My Mumble - Death By Powerpoint! 

The event stared with an introduction from the people running the study day and a quick run round of introductions from the attendees. There were about 50 people in the audience and I had not met anyone face to face before. 

My presentation was due to be the last one as it was the longest. I had made it applicable to the venue by using the F1 team as a link between the oil and gas industry and the use of hydrocarbon in the production of products that are in common day usage. 

I stared the talk by apologizing that I wasn’t as glamorous as  Danny LaRue, as funny as Eddy Isard, or as sharp as Lilly Savage – this seemed to break the ice and I explained my TG status, offering to talk to anyone about TG issues if they ever had the need. 

The talk went well and I had lots of interesting questions and positive comments fed back to me about the subject matter. Sadly I overran my 40 mins to end up at an hour .. so have apologised to the organiser as she was supposed to be giving a talk after mine which she canceled politely saying that mine was more interesting than hers would have been anyway !  (I felt very guilty and apologised several times after !) 

Myself with the formula E race car 
Geek Outing 

At the end of the day we were able to visit the heritage museum that was in the building and one of the team pit crew was able to show us around the cars on show. 
These included several world championship winning cars from the past, right up to the previous years racing car and the development cars from the new E series.

I was able to let my inner geek out and enjoy seeing all the history and technology that was on display, and tap into the mind of information that the guide was able to impart on us about the cars and the drivers who used them. 






Some of the championship winning cars from over the years 


After a quick visit to the shop to buy some gifts for the lads on my platform, I made my way out and headed south at a rather sedate pace compared to the cars in the site! 

On the way out of the gate, I came nose to nose with the large HGV lorries that were returning the race team from the Monaco Grand Prix that had been ran a couple of days previously – it was a very impressive convoy!! 


More !!

I have been asked to do another talk in the future on a relevant topic .… but I may have to be more critical on my time keeping before I get to go back ! 

Please note - my presentation has nothing to do with the teams fortunes in the current season.... hope that they get to win some points this year  ......

Hugs Dawn 
x

Friday, 4 January 2019

Reminiscing .....

I was browsing the internet today and found a post by a newly ‘out’ girl who had just set up a new website for trans women to chat on and pass on information as she said she couldn’t find anything on the web. A 30second search found 50 sites for new TG’s in the UK and 3 in her local area. 

This lead me to think about my early days and the information vacuum at that time compared to the deluge of information available at any time from any place with an internet or mobile phone connection. 
OK, I’m going back to the BC times (before computers and mobile phones) and everything I knew about my ‘dressing hobby’ came from the tabloid newspapers or off the telly. In those days we only had BBC and ITV (BBC2 and Channel 4 came later). 

There where only two categories in those days, TV or TS, with TV’s being crossdressers, part time, non-op and the bulk of the numbers and TS being for those who were actively looking for medical intervention to have hormones and surgery. The TS group shunned the non-op full timers as not being serious about their transition. I’m glad to say things have moved on a lot since then and we are much better understood. 

I kept a little diary with all my phone contacts in and had to make use of the public call boxes to contact friends and family as we didn’t have a phone at home, and when we did I was paranoid that my parents would catch me using it . 
I found the last version of my written phone list recently and remembered all the lovely people who helped me on my way over the years. 

Letters – we used to write letters to people, with a pen and no spell check (my spelling was awful – and still is!!) Then sat for days hoping for a reply, dreading that my mother would open it before I did and read the contents.  


So where did we go for this ‘information’

The daily newspapers had ‘agony aunts’ who would sometimes give tidbits of information on the various support groups – such as the Beaumont Society, and contact details for the gay switchboards who would then give you a number of someone who may have been a TV/TS and was willing to help.   Often it was a dead end and you could spend days trying to call the number with no answer. 

I was lucky in that I called the Bristol gay switch board one day and was given a number of a lovely TS lady who met me and took me to a meeting at the Bristol Beaumont group, which in those days was strictly ‘heterosexual crossdressers’ only, but that was mostly ignored as there was nowhere else to go. 
Being very young and passable at that time I was soon invited out to other groups in the area and even up to London to the gay pubs where drag queens performed. My life took off in an amazing direction and am still benefiting from that meeting today. 

The main other area of information was the telly. 
There were very few factual based programs dealing with transgender at that time, but we did have the odd gem. 

The late Julia Grant. 
The BBC ran a series of fly on the wall type documentaries based on Julia Grant, who had phoned up the BBC to complain about the BBC calling a Transsexual a Transvestite, and after speaking on the phone was enlisted to be the subject of a documentary following her progression through her transition.  
I was glued to the telly the night the first one was broadcast (you only had on chance to catch it as there was no +1 channels !) and was in awe, I wanted to find out more, have my multitude of questions answered, but became frustrated at the lack of information about services or guidance. 
Sadly Julia passed away in January 2019 after a short illness. I had the honor to meet her a few times when I visited Manchester and thanked her for allowing the documentary to be made, explaining its profound affect on someone in a small farming town deep in the South West of the UK. 

Other landmarks in my past were the stories about April Ashley, Christine Jorgensen, Renee Richards, Roberta Cowell, and later Caroline Crosby (Tula) that occasionally grace the newspapers of that time. The reporting was slightly more factual than todays interpretation of the facts, and - like now - often made errors in the accounts, however it was an oasis in a desert for people like me. 

Roberta Cowell 
Music had its share of crossdressing, with Sylvester being an in your face drag queen who took the disco dance scene by storm in the 80’s with her glamorous costumes and high energy dance routines.  Amada Lear came to the fore in the 80’s about the same time as Boy George, Peter Burns and the new romantic movement set forth and androgyny, glam rock and punk hit the world. 

So, where is this going … 

I stated with my concern for a poor sole who thought that they had no information that was suitable for them. It may be that the vast amount of information is diluting the quality, like the 200+ telly channels that we can view at the touch of a button, or the variety of sites that you can pull up on the internet with a simple search. 

Online you have the likes of YouTube where you can see how to make Boobs, do your hair, fit eyelashes and learn makeup skills; Face Book, Twitter, Snap Chat where you can post a message and have support in a few seconds; Numerous chat sites that cater for all tastes world wide, support sites that have links to other support sites, personal stories and blogs (like mine and others on here).  

The choice is endless.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not criticising these in any way, my concerns are sorting the chaff from the wheat – where the quality sites are drowned in misinformation. 

As a nurse I often come in contact with patients who have looked up their symptoms on the web and made a profound diagnosis of their condition, requesting a particular type of treatment that ‘they have seen used in America’  This was countered by a college of mine who quoted ‘Don’t confuse your five minute Google search with my five years Masters Degree’ and that made me think – have we lost something over the years with the over availability of information? 

So perhaps Quality not Quantity is what is needed – The truth is out there - it just needs to be found. 

Just my thoughts. 
Hugs and Heath 
Dawn 
xxx


 http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-manchester-46735571

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

My Transgender Day of Remembrance - 2018



The Transgender Memorial 
Each year there are transgender people who take their own lives or have their lives taken from them just for being who they are. The 20thNovember has been nominated the Transgender Day of Remembrance since 1999, initially in response to the murder of Rita Hester in Massachusetts, USA: and became an international movement in 2010. 

Since then this event has gained momentum and has been observed in over 20 countries. 
In the UK the national media have responded with articles and positive portraits of members of the Transgender Community, and this year there was a week long event to highlight Transgender Awareness.
In Sackville Gardens, Manchester, on the site of the annual ‘Sparkle’ event is the UK’s Transgender Memorial, where those who are lost to us are remembered in a simple service and vigil. 

For me, I was working offshore this week working and have had discussions on Transgender issues with some of my work colleagues, I have presented an LGBT awareness presentation to the platform population and took time out to remember.  
In my own way, I remembered the passing of one of our good friends who was drowned off the back of her sailing boat. She was not officially part of the criteria for the remembrance day, but I took the opportunity to mark the passing of a good friend. 

However the support has been found in other areas unexpected, as Sky television screened three powerful films on the evening of the 20thNovember that showed the plight of Transgender  individuals.

The films were ‘grown up’ films, not making the lead character a comic event or a ‘baddie’. The subject matter was treated with respect in all three films and showed the misconceptions and struggles that Transgender individuals must deal with on a daily basis. 

Just Charlie 



The first film was the British film ‘Just Charlie’, and was about a young football player who felt that they were a girl trapped in a boys body. 
The film covers the distress of the father and other relatives, the social implications and the rejection that they received to achieve their goals. 
It portrays the frustration and struggles of the main character, the frustration of the parents and eventually the acceptance and support needed to help them become their true self. 
I thought that the film was well done, the obvious input by Mermaids and others from the Transgender Community was evident and puts the message over very well.  





Fantastic Woman 

The second was a Chilean film that won an Oscar at the 2018 academy awards for best foreign film, as well as a host of other awards. 
The story follows a Transgender woman whose lover suddenly dies and her life is put into turmoil over the circumstances of his death and the hatred of his family. 
It’s a very powerful, artistic and moving film; beautifully made with colorful sets and backdrops, the frustration and rejection of her lovers family overspills into verbal abuse, with the main character trying to maintain her dignity. 
The star of the film is Daniela Vega, a Transgender woman who is also a mezzo-Soprano opera singer and sings the opera pieces during the film. 
I really enjoyed the film with its pace and delivery, giving me time to piece together the issues surrounding the story and make my own conclusions. 



Boys don't Cry 
The third film that night was the powerful American 1999 film, ‘Boys don’t Cry’. 
This is an angry film that is based on a true story of Brandon Teena, a Transgender man who was brutally murdered in Nebraska. 
The lead role was undertaken by Hillary Swank, who received an Oscar for her performance, however the LGBT community noted the film was often misinterpreted in that the main focus was the Transgender identity aspect being some what lost in the violent ending. 
Again I enjoyed the film and the gritty story line, the plight of the lead and the compassion of the need to be them selves, the rejection/acceptance of the character and the issues surrounding the perception of being Transgendered. 





Over the last few years I feel that the mystique of Transgender is being removed and people are now more aware and generally accepting, however there are still uneducated individuals out there who can be very vocal and violent as described in these films, as well as acceptance, compassion and understanding, as is now more evident in daily lives. 

They are know to us. 


Monday, 15 October 2018

Winter Woollies


Summer has been an amazing season in the UK this year, with record number of sunny days and record temperatures, leading to a great outdoor adventures and events, days by the sea side and picnics. 

Summer frocks, sandals, sunblock and sloppy hat were the style of the day to help keep cool and look cool too. 

For myself, this summer I wore a range of summer frocks and comfortable shoes and pashminas in the evenings when the sun went down.  
I enjoyed the summer, but found the fashions restrictive as its too warm for me to wear my most stylish clothes and fashionable shoes. 

Dark Dawn 
So Autumn blusters in with winds and rain, cool nights and frosty mornings. The fashions become warmer with longer heaver skirts, thicker tights and the return of warm boots. Its probably my favorite season for fashions as I can wear my warm woolen coats, leather gloves and my many hats. 
I enjoy the layers of soft snuggly jumpers and tops, the ankle length woolen skirts and the fashionable jackets and coats that can help disguise a multitude of sins and re-enforce the feminine image.

Spring Forward - Fall Back 

As the nights draw in and the days shorten, many girls feel more comfortable going out and about. The darkness providing some additional protection to their scurrying out of the house before the neighbors can spot them. 
I remember going to an event in London one summer that had the doors open at 8pm. We turned up at 8pm on the dot and were the first there, then had a whole hour and a half to wait till the next person arrived. The proprietress spent the time chatting to us and commented that the girls were all like vampires and shunned the sunlight ! 

Dawn Autumn Sun

The cooler days allow me to bring out my more stylish classical clothes, paired with as range of scarfs and hats, then matching gloves, bags and shoes. Its a chance to dress to impress, but being functional and warm! 

It’s a chance for me to move to more earthy colours for my makeup, more russet blusher shades, lighter foundation,  and darker lipsticks. Rich deep colours give a warmer look to my pale face and the browns and greens make my eyes pop in the paler autumn sunlight.   

Dawn Night 

Choices .... Choices 

My wardrobe has several long coats, shorter leather jackets and a lot of scarfs.! The shoe cupboard has a wide selection of black and brown boots in varying heel height and leg length, as well as numerous pairs of more sturdy shoes for any occasion. I have red, black and brown gloves to match my bags in leather and wool. 
Hats …. Did I mention hats …. I adore my hats and have a selection of them to finish off an outfit, in a range of styles and colours to match my coats and other accessories.  

Dawn Vintage 


My informal selection includes baggy jumpers over roll neck tops, body warmers and puffer jackets that go with ski pants and jeans, topped off with furry head bands and neck warmers with clumpy ankle boots or flat soled long boots.

Dawn Crossing 

So – don’t despair over the end of the summer – rejoice in the autumn and take advantage of the cool weather to make the most of your layered wardrobe. 

Humble Beginnings

As many of you know, we all have to start somewhere and this is my first jump into writing a blog, so bare with me and my misguided steps in...