Bluebird

Hmmm.

Had a fabulous lunch with my publisher, talking about my book. I had thought there must be some sort of catch when you do something like that – it sounds so perfect on paper, surely in real life it’s a massive disappointment. But no. The place was perfect (Tom’s Kitchen in Chelsea), the food was perfect (mackerel salad – it’s great eating with another woman and not feeling the need to order vast plates of steak), the conversation was perfect (the cover of book 2 and what’s going to happen to the characters next; also the merits of various wallpaper manufacturers – serious heaven), and I left without any of those ‘oh by the way, we can’t actually publish you’ moments, while she headed off to yet another meeting about my book. So far so good.

So there I was in Chelsea, just down the road from one of my most favourite places to window shop for fashion – Bluebird, at the end of the King’s Road – and naturally I had to pop in and ‘do some more research’ before going back to my library and writing. (OK, before stopping off at the Bluebird Cafe and writing, but I did eventually do some writing, honest.)

And now, not only do they have cool shoes (Rupert Sanderson) and cool clothes (Charles Anastase, See by Chloe, Acne jeans), and cool furnishings (see my previous blog about sexy cushions) but they have cool vintage pieces too. I flicked along the rail and came to The Piece I Have Been Looking For Forever: a peacock blue/green devore velvet shawl/coat that would glam up any evening outfit AND keep your arms warm.

I couldn’t help myself. I tried it on. I found out the price (a quarter of what I was expecting), I discovered it was made by Georgina Von Etzdorf, who made my favourite devore velvet and silk scarves a few years ago, and Reader, I bought it.

I was thrilled with myself. I hugged it to me. I took it home (after the writing, which I did eventually do, honest) and tried it on for my husband. My husband who buys me clothes and constantly flatters me and is basically perfect in every way.

He sat there in his Acne skinny jeans (which I occasionally mistake for my jeans, even though he’s a foot taller than me – he is so slim), his baggy linen shirt and Converse, looking like a man who knows how to dress.

His face scrunched up. He seemed loath to speak. But he did anyway. He said TPIHBLFF made me look like a fortune teller. A short fortune teller. An old, short fortune teller. And Reader, he was right.

He said he liked the fabric and everything. Just not in that design. And not on me. And when I checked in the mirror to see if there was some way I could persuade him that it was, after all, the perfect evening cover-up, all I could see was an old, short fortune teller in a nice dress that you could hardly see because it was covered up by this fringed shawl thing.

I’m taking it back later this week. Damn that perfect husband of mine.

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