The Wearing of the Green

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Ah, it’s a grand day in the neighbourhood, so it is. All blue sky and sunshiney. The man is off playing golf. And I’m after having a wee fashion show, so I am. With my new, green Prada jumper. And whatever I can find in my closet that goes best with it.

Like this khaki, suede biker jacket that I won last spring on Alyson Walsh’s blog That’s Not My Age. The khaki suede looks lovely, I think, with my new green sweater. Please note: I have dropped the annoying faux Irish accent… bet you’re relieved. Anyhoo… I’m also wearing a Theory white shirt, and Citizens of Humanity cropped jeans. This is a good outfit for a day like today. Crisp, and a bit breezy, but with warm sunshine. No need for a scarf or gloves. Well, you might want gloves if you’re raking leaves. Which I’m not.

  Theory white shirt, Prada sweater, M&S khaki suede jacket, Citizens of Humanity jeans, Stuart Weitzman boots
These are my new Stuart Weitzman ankle boots. I’ve been looking for boots since August. I couldn’t decide if I wanted pull-on, Chelsea-style, which would be very similar to my old Cole Haan boots that I’ve had for at least four years. And, when you consider the length of time I keep my boots, this would mean, if I bought a similar pair, that I’d be wearing essentially the same style for like eight years. And that’s a long time. Ha. Almost as long as that explanation. So… no to the Chelsea boots. Time for a change. Then I thought I might go for something a bit more dressy. A dressier ankle boot would look lovely with a few outfits, but I’d probably not get enough wear out of them And they would not be as comfortable as something more rugged. So I opted for rugged. I like how the detail on these boots makes them look like brogues. I like the suede on the sides. And the fact that they are narrow at the top, so my cropped pants fit over them neatly. I tried tucking my cropped pants into my old boots, and just felt silly. I admire that style on other people, but it’s not for me.
Citizens of Humanity jeans, Stuart Weitzman boots
My new rugged Stuart Weitzman boots
But let’s get back to my new Prada sweater. I also tried it over my white Vince turtleneck, under my old, green Max Mara tweed blazer. With these cropped khaki jeans from Massimo Dutti. And my new Stuart Weitzman boots. That’s a lot of green, I know, but I think it works.
Max Mara jacket, VInce turtleneck, Prada sweater, Massiom Dutti cropped khaki pants, Stuart Weitzman boots, earrings Magpie Jewellry, vintage brooch
The wearing of the green, green, and green
It’s hard to tell from the photos, but this blazer is deep green with caramel, and gold, and even a few lilac flecks. I’m wearing it with gold stud earrings from Magpie Jewellry, and my mum’s gold feather brooch from the sixties.
Max Mara jacket, VInce turtleneck, Prada sweater, earrings Magpie Jewellry, vintage brooch
Love my mum’s old brooch with this Max Mara jacket
Sure, it’s been a regular “wearing of the green” day in my house. And my fashion show was good craic, so it was. Apologies to those who didn’t know that the Irish mean “fun” when they say “craic.” And further apologies to those who moan that it should be spelled “crack,” and not the “bogus” Gaelic version “craic.” And since I am ever in support of those who are anal about grammar and spelling, you can read an amusing article about that little language debate here.
I didn’t know when I began this post that the traditional Irish ballad “The Wearing of the Green” is a lament for “the repression of supporters of the Irish Rebellion of 1798” (source.)The wearing of green (whether ribbons or shamrocks etc) as a symbol of support for Irish nationalism was banned. And punishment for defying this edict could be harsh. As the lines in the song say: “They’re hanging men and women for the wearing of the green.” Reading this gave me pause, when I realized that my great-great-great grandfather Michael Sullivan emigrated to Canada a mere twenty years after that rebellion of 1798. Did he speak Gaelic, I wonder? From my limited research, it seems his home town of Tralee, County Kerry was a hotbed of republican fervour. So it’s likely that he may have been a Gaelic speaker. And even spelled his name Ó Súileabháin before he landed on the coast of Eastern Canada in 1819, and made his way inland to settle in Victoria County, New Brunswick.
His great grandson, my grandfather Sullivan, was a lover of all things Irish. Whiskey for one. Also playing the “Irish Washer Woman” on his mouth organ. And finding… maybe not shamrocks, exactly… but four-leaf clovers. I know, I know, the four-leaf clover is not the same as a shamrock which has three leaves. But I always associate it with my grandfather Sullivan who had an almost mystical (to me anyway) ability to find them. Here are three that he found for me when I was a child. I took them home and pressed them into a book. And later I carefully moved them to this photo album.
 three four leaf clovers found for me by my grandfather in the late sixties.
My three treasured four-leaf clovers
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve wondered… how did he do it? Grampy Sullivan was a very big, very tall man. And, by the time he found these clovers, he was not a young man; he’d had cataracts removed, wore glasses as thick as coke bottle bottoms, and would not have found it easy to crawl around on the ground. So how he was able to pick three tiny, four-leaf clovers from the mess of clover in his backyard remains a mystery to me.
Indeed, the answer seems destined to remain shrouded in the mists of time. And… please… if anyone in  my family knows the secret… for god’s sake… don’t tell me.
I like a little mystery in my life.
So that’s my version of the “wearing of the green.” Prada green, that is. But still, green is green. Right? One of my favourite colours. And as for my three green, four-leaf clovers. Well, I love keeping track of things from the past. And treasuring personal “artifacts”… let’s call them.
They’re proof that, in a world that is always changing, we all have roots.
How about you folks? Do you like to wear green?
I don’t always include links to items I wear in my posts; I write about pieces I’ve bought or already own.  But since you asked here are a few:
Massimo Dutti khaki jeans
M&S khaki suede “Twiggy” jacket is no longer available
 Vince jacket closest thing I could find to my Max Mara tweed

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From the archives


Best Laid Plans And All That

I’m at my mum’s this week. And our best laid plans have fallen apart. All because of a couple of silly choices and a bad back.


Playing With Jewellery

Inspired by my favourite Youtube channels, I’m playing with jewellery this week. Rummaging through my collection and trying to wear what I own.


Finally Writing About Books.

I’m talking about books today. What I’ve been reading. What’s on my book shelves, and what those shelves say about me.

51 thoughts on “The Wearing of the Green”

  1. Great looks Sue . Green was my favorite years ago & at sixteen I saved for months on my meager wage to buy a dark green suede trench coat ( ten weeks wages ). How I adored that coat , wore it when I went to see the Beatles & I'd like one just like it now . Over the years my love of green waned & it became impossible to find in the shops anyway – out of fashion I guess , but I've been hankering for green for a few years now . My new boots are lace up like yours but ….green , a sort of sludgy green & I've found a sage green cord jacket . So yes , plenty green here . Always happy to hear tales of your ancestors & so clever that you link the green through from your gtgtgt to your new jumper . Not so sure about the faux brogue but guess you are entitled 🙂
    Wendy in York

    1. Thanks, Wendy. I remember saving money from my part-time job. Over here we had something called "lay away" plans in stores. You put a few dollars down on a new coat or jeans and they set it aside for you. Then you paid a bit each week or so until you paid it off and could take it home. Now kids just put it on their parents' credit card. That sage green cord jacket sounds lovely.

  2. My mother adores green,all 50 shades of it:-)
    My favourite is emerald green,I like it with navy,especially in summer. My parka is khaki/olive green and this is another favorite of mine
    You mastered green on green outfits-it suits you really great!
    My lace-up ankle boots are brown-now I could steel some ideas how to wear them.
    Lovely stories about your family,it is so interesting to read
    I've never found a four leaf clovers-some people do all the time,but it's a mistery for me

    1. Emerald green is lovely with navy, isn't it? But I like most shades of green. Except turquoise…not a fan of turquoise clothing on me. Now turquoise waters are a whole different thing!

  3. I rarely buy or wear green since it does me no favors. You, however, look smashing in it! AND, I love the boots you are wearing. I try on fancy boots and they rarely if ever feel good on my feet….. the combat look works just fine for my ever aching feet. Age has done them no favors. LOL I always enjoy stopping by your blog to see what you are up to and what kind of fun you are having…. xo

  4. I enjoyed this very much.
    This was a very special year in Ireland–a lot of green was worn, to commemorate the Easter Rising in 1916.
    As a "northerner" in Ireland we really do say"what's the crack?" all the time and being 61 I definitely mean "crack"
    This might sound weird Sue but I think you look so Irish it's uncanny. What makes someone look Irish you might ask.
    I'm not sure exactly–your colouring perhaps. The "cow's lick" in your fringe. I just don't know but you would fit right in should you ever decide to visit!

    1. Ah well…I guess that's just my Irish blood coming out, eh? My husband and I visited Ireland in 2011 and I felt so at home everywhere we went. Can't wait to go back, in fact.

  5. I have always enjoyed wearing green and still do on occasion but as others have mentioned not always easy to find good greens in clothing stores. Love how you have styled your green sweater and those boots look so wearable. Trying to decide on a pair of boots myself but fear I have left it too late in the season. Always enjoy your tales and this one was no exception.

    1. I don't care for some shades of green. But deep forest green or olive and khaki I love. You might get lucky with boots… maybe they'll all be coming on sale soon… and you'll be happy you waited.

  6. I love the boots. Sturdy but still very stylish. It would be wonderful if you linked to the clothes you are wearing so we could easily order.
    I can tell you have very fond memories of your grandfather. To have kept those four leave clovers all these years – precious.

  7. I love the story about your Grandfather. I used to look for 4 leaf clover as a kid. Never did find one.

    LOVE those boots! I think you will get lots of wear out of them. The heel looks like the perfect height.

    The vintage pin is a wonderful addition. A little bit of vintage in every outfit seems to take it up a notch or two.


  8. Loved to read about your grandfather and family history Sue.
    Your Prada jumper was definitely a wise purchase! It looks great with your biker jacket ..classic and chic. Stunning boots too ..I especially like the suede trim and "brogue styling" I have some chunky biker style boots in black nubuck that I bought last winter.They come up to low calf and work well with skinnies tucked in. So comfy wearing my hiking boots but more stylish 🙂
    I used to wear a lot of green including a bright green coat and hat that always made me feel happy when I wore it …must give it an outing sometime!In fact one of my daughters friends who work in fashion said I should wear green to her wedding. My husband said "Noooo" 🙂 The jury's out but likely I'll go for a silvery grey or possibly taupe …classic or boring???

  9. Me again ..I must check I've said all I mean to before publishing!!
    Love your mum's vintage pin too …I can see that on a jacket when you wear the vintage hat you showed us.

    1. Well…I don't know if buying that sweater was wise, or not. It was way more than I would normally spend. But I love it, and I had "light sweaters to wear under blazers" on my list…and if it's on "the list"… then of course it's okay:)

  10. No, can't say I've worn much green clothes in my time.

    Going from the mid '70s I had a pair of faded bottle green flares, an olive green crewneck T-shirt, a similar coloured cotton skivvy ( that's a turtleneck T-shirt with long sleeves ), a bottle green ribbed poloneck sweater and in the '80s, '90s and early 2000s I had a dark green fishermans rib crewneck sweater.

    1. Thanks, Cee. Well…that sound like quite a lot of green to me. I haven't had a green sweater for years and years. I remember I used to borrow my roommate's back in the day…and was always sad when she decided to wear it herself:)

  11. Love your green sweater and all of your outfits. I wear a lot of olive green, and did buy a pair of forest green velvet chelsea booties (which may have been an impulsive mistake)

  12. Very entertaining post! Your green outfit looks fab and I do like the boots. In my previous life I wore green scrubs and as unattractive as they are, the colour is just great on me. I have great affection for the colour green.

    1. Thanks, Susan. I presume you mean you wore scrubs in your professional life. I also remember when they became really popular in the nineties, the kids in my classes wore them all the time.

  13. Sharon Howland Hamilton

    My Aunt Charlotte Currie could also find four leaf clovers and gave me several over the years in cards. She also bought me my favorite cookbook in 1977 and I use it all the time – the Five Roses cookbook- A Guide to Good Cooking. Thanks for reminding me of her.

    1. What a neat idea, Sharon. To give them in cards…birthday wishes and good luck all at once. I have the Rive Roses cookbook too. From my mum. It must have been popular back then. Also the Barbour's cookbook which was published in Saint John. Mum bought me that as my first cookbook. I still have them both although I don't use either of them often, anymore.

  14. Love a forest-like dark green this time of year — it feels so rich! And that brooch of your mother's is beautiful! Must be nice to have those long, lean legs!! 🙂

  15. I do like green but have very little of it in my wardrobe. Indeed, practically nothing. It can be hard to find the right shade. Rather like yellow which I would never wear. Very hard for the northern European older complexion because it makes me look as though I am jaundice, walking.

  16. I quite adore that white turtleneck and green tweed pairing, despite the many greens, the variances in texture and saturation put together a beautiful composition 🙂

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