"". March 2023 | Is This Mutton?

Fashion for the over 50s with books and beauty

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Friday 31 March 2023

March in Review

 #WhatsBeenOnYourCalendar #WBOYC

David Hockney Immersive exhibition in London

Dear friends. March could be described as "the month that sunshine forgot."  They say March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb.  Unfortunately, it was a lion for most of the month! Let's hope for an improvement in April.

So what did I get up to? I continued with my monthly discovery of art, and I succeeded with my personal self-care goals.  There were two colourful Kettlewell meet-ups and a trip to Devon for Mother's Day. Not to mention walks and books.


Wednesday 29 March 2023

Beauty Rummage and the Cult Products I Can't Live Without

 & #WowOnWednesday

Beauty over 60 with London style blogger Is This Mutton.  Latest discoveries include Korean Erborian Super BB Cream and Japanese Suqqu Waterproof Mascara.

Dear friends. I won't lie to you, it has not been an easy week.  I lost my devoted companion Molly seven days ago and the grief has been intense. Last week I threw myself into work - blogging and cleaning. But the last few days have been more difficult.  I sent J to collect her ashes, which we will scatter on the garden on a sunny spring day. 

I jettisoned plans for an outfit shoot today when it started raining again.  Instead it's a good time for a periodic rummage in the makeup bag and a look at the products I consider indispensable. Plus the cult products I can't live without.  These would surprise the young beauty bloggers and social media managers I suspect. But we like to surprise them, don't we? 


Monday 27 March 2023

Denim - Not Jeans: Style Not Age Challenge

 Wearing a denim dress over 60. Gail Hanlon in midi denim dress from Asos with white ankle boots and orange belt.

Dear friends. Jacqui's challenge to style something in denim other than jeans turned out to be quite the challenge! I could have used my denim jacket but I styled it just last week and featured it here. I used to have a denim dress but it strained across the front buttons so I hardly ever wore it.  I do like a denim dress though, particularly for this transitional time of year, so I ordered this one from Asos.

Thursday 23 March 2023

Read All About It: March Books {2023}


Dear friends. I didn't think I'd read many books this month but the list is quite long, and shows what you can do what you put your mind to it! My post is late this month but I've managed to join the southern hemisphere link-up by the skin of my teeth! 

My books of the month are: 

Henry VIII: The Heart and the Crown by Alison Weir

Metronome by Tom Watson


Remembering Molly 2004 - 2023

 Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton on the life of her 19 year old cat Molly who died on March 22 2023

Dear friends. Sad news. My devoted companion Molly the Mouser has gone to the great garden in the sky. She was 19, we think, and had a long, happy life. 


Wednesday 22 March 2023

My Cotton Traders Spring Edit

 & #WowOnWednesday

Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in lime boucle jacket from Cotton Traders

Dear friends. It's official: the Spring Equinox has happened and we finally leap forward into British Summertime on Sunday.  So I was more than ready to choose 4 items from Cotton Traders to start making the most of the spring sunshine.


Thursday 16 March 2023

Tell Us About....Scent!

 & The Tell Us About It Link-Up

Bottle of scent to illustrate a post about the scents and perfumes which have shaped women's lives. Photo by Laura Chouette on Unsplash

Dear friends. Welcome to another edition of Tell Us About, the challenge where bloggers from the UK, US and Australia respond to a prompt each month in their own unique way.

This month it's the turn of Jill from Grownup Glamour whose prompt is Scent.

Wednesday 15 March 2023

Accidentally On Trend - and Bold Colours

 & #WowonWednesday

Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in jade and bright apricot

Dear friends. Ever had that delightful epiphany when you discover you're accidentally on trend?  It happened to me twice this week.


Friday 10 March 2023

10 on the 10th: Ring Ring!

 Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in the early 1990s with one of her first mobile phones

Dear friends.  I couldn't resist this one: 10 questions about phones!  It's the March prompt for 10 on the 10th from Marsha in the Middle.  I had a brief two year stint working at BT International in the late 80s and am a bit nerdy about phones.


Wednesday 8 March 2023

New Beginnings! Fashion and Nutrition

 & #WowOnWednesday

Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton in her seasonally analysed spring colours: flamingo pink and warm yellow, in clothes by Kettlewell Colours.

Dear friends.  Happy International Women's Day! 

I always regard March or September as the best times for new beginnings. Forget January with its bad weather and all the pious crusades for giving up this, that and the other.  For me, as we move towards the spring equinoxe, the light changes and it's much clearer to think now about how we want to enrich our lives.


After not buying anything in January  (yep, I fell victim to a pious crusade!), I've bought a fair few things for spring. I don't feel guilty about it. As I've always said, buying everything from charity shops is laudable, and essential if your budget is tight, but if we can afford to buy new we're doing a huge favour to retailers, the fashion industry and the huge numbers of women who work in that sector.

When the Kettlewell new range came out I was thrilled to see the return of the short moto jacket Chloe and in a shade called Warm Yellow.  Since my re-rating as a spring last year, I've discovered that warm light yellow is one of my best colours. I love it!  I have several of these jackets. I wear them a lot in spring and summer both on my everyday walks and dressed up for social events. 

Is This Mutton founder Gail Hanlon in warm yellow and green to celebrate the arrival of spring

I also snapped up the Sunshine Scarf in yellow and flamingo pink, top pic, which I'm wearing with the Becca sweater in lemonade and short tie wrap in flamingo pink. I bought a couple of basics too in terms of tops and another short tie wrap. 

Make-up Used

Clarins Everlasting Youth Fluid in Honey, Too Faced Papa Don't Peach blusher, Charlotte Tilbury Brow Lift in deep brown, Suqqu Waterproof Mascara 107, Look Fabulous Forever Soft Eyeliner in forest green and No Shimmer Eyeshade Trio in Soft Greens plus lipsticks True Coral (top pic) and Sunset Glow (second pic). Highlighter: Lisa Eldridge Elevated Glow in Crystal Nebula.


Back in 2019 I started eating low carb and it's helped me to keep off the weight. Cue reminder pic of me in 2002, to show you what I used to look like, three and a half stones heavier, at 12 stone 7 pounds  (175 pounds or 79kg). 

Is This Mutton blogger Gail Hanlon in 2002 when she was three and a half stones heavier than in 2023

I'd seen research that suggested it wasn't a great diet long-term, and I didn't think much about it.  That is, until I had a blood test when I signed up for the NHS Our Future Health initiative  (read about it here). My triglycerides were so high they couldn't get a reading for cholesterol.  

When I Googled high triglycerides, it suggested that this affects obese people who eat processed foods and sugar, as well as those who consume too much alcohol and those who don't exercise.

I immediately cut out my lunches of full fat Greek yoghurt layered with toasted nuts and berries, and reduced my my high consumption of cheese.  I then took a private blood test with Medichecks - you do it yourself and send the sample to them for analysis.  Four weeks had elapsed and everything was normal  (including triglycerides) except for my cholesterol which is high, both for "good" and "bad" markers.

My risk of heart disease is still mercifully low because I have hereditary low blood pressure. But it's still been a wake-up call. 

My diet was mainly deficient in grains, fruit and pulses, so I'm gradually reintroducing them.  I've decided to have red meat only very occasionally and to increase consumption of fish. I'm also reducing consumption of eggs, although they seem to be exonerated in most research I've seen lately, and swapping my egg breakfasts for overnight oats, porridge or smoothies with oat milk, cacao and berries. 

The thing that bugs me the most is the full fat business.  

The British Heart Foundation has a low cholesterol diet on its website and it recommends everything should be low fat: yoghurt, milk and cheese, with vegetable spread instead of butter and vegetable oil instead of coconut oil for cooking.  I find this odd because low fat foods, and vegetable spreads and oils, are generally highly processed and/or full of sugar. 

I still can't bring myself to buy low fat yoghurt so that's an avenue of pleasure closed.

I'm not expecting to lose weight but I hope to see the cholesterol levels drop.  I pledged to myself that I would do everything I can to stay in good health and not require prescription drugs. 

International Women's Day

In honour of today I bought a book from Amazon which is from a first time author in her 50s:  Trespasses by Louise Kennedy.  It's been long listed for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2023. It's the haunting tale of a Protestant-Catholic love affair.  Another debut novel, Fire Rush from Jacqueline Crooks, also in her 50s, made the long list too.  It just goes to show that we are not past it in our 50s and beyond!

What's your view on new beginnings for spring?  Have you made any fashion buys yet? Do let us know in the comments.

Sharing this post with: On Mondays We Link Up at Glass of Glam, Weekday Wear at Away from the Blue#AnythingGoes at My Random Musings, Rena at Fine WhateverTurning Heads Tuesday at Elegantly Dressed and Stylish,  Confident Twosday at I Do Declaire, Style with a Smile at StylesplashTalent Sharing Tuesdays at Scribbling BoomerChic & Stylish at Mummabstylish, #SpreadTheKindness  and #Linkup on the Edge at Shelbee on the Edge,  Thursday Fashion Files at Doused in Pink, #Neverendingstyle at The Grey BrunetteFancy Friday at Nancy's Fashion Style,  Traffic Jam Weekend at Marsha in the Middle Fabulous Fridays at Lucy BertoldiCurated by Jennifer (Wednesdays). 

Wow On Wednesday Link-Up

Now it's time for #WowOnWednesday, the weekly link-up with extra goodness. Readers can find new blogs to read, and bloggers, Instagrammers and YouTubers can find new audiences! Plus I promote five to six posts that caught my eye each weekend on FB and Twitter. The week's favourites - most clicked - are shared on Instagram Stories on Wednesday.

Last Week's Favourites (Most Clicked) 

Layering with a Vest During Bridge Season by Di from I Wish I was Back in Style 

9 Spring Trends You can Actually Wear from Kellyann of This Blonde's Shopping Bag

Heather from Bauchle Fashion with 5 Must-Have Thrift Fashionphile Finds

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Wednesday 1 March 2023

How Much Longer Can Brands Ignore the Revenue Opportunity of Older Women?

 & #WowOnWednesday

The Is This Mutton survey 2023 results on women's wardrobes and influences over the age of 50

Brands are failing to represent older women in their ads and on websites,  even though nearly 60% of women over 40 buy more clothes now than they did in their teens or 20s.

This huge discrepancy is highlighted in the 2023 Is This Mutton annual survey.  

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