Suffolk, UK

Colouring the Countryside: Showcasing Lighthouse Clothing #AD

After nearly six years of city living in Oxford and Leicester, the month of March has brought me back to the Suffolk farm where I spent my childhood. As well as my parents, my brother and my sister, our rural plot is home to a veritable menagerie of animals. We have everything from dogs and fish to pigs and budgies - if you can you name it, we've probably got it! 

Obviously the lockdown has been a tense and worrying time, but being outside with the animals has added joy and colour to my days. I've been colouring the countryside in a very literal sense as well, with some gorgeously bright outdoor-wear from Lighthouse Clothing. Today's post will introduce you to some of my farmyard friends and the clothing pieces that I've been loving.

Abbey with Sophie, a fluffy New Forest Pony with black mane and brown coat

Say hello to Sophie

Although it does look like I'm standing with a very fluffy bear in this photo, Sophie is actually a New Forest Pony! She joined our family in 2009 and as she is now an old lady, she is enjoying her retirement by grazing her days away on our meadow. Thanks to the spring sunshine, Sophie is currently losing her winter coat, meaning that she leaves chunks of hair all over the trees in her paddock where she has been using them to scratch her bum! All of the songbirds are very happy that she is moulting - they pick up her discarded hair and use it to line their nests.

When going to give Sophie a much-needed brush and feed her a daily carrot, I've been wearing Lighthouse's Lara Jacket in Sunrise, paired with their Merino Scarf in Sunrise Night Sky Stripe. The jacket is very lightweight and perfect for spring but it still keeps you warm if the wind picks up. It is perfectly true to size and beautifully fitted. The scarf always brings a smile to my face because it was woven in Ireland, a country that I was supposed to be living in until the end of April until global events forced me to return home. I still feel like I've got a little bit of Ireland with me when I put this lovely soft scarf around my neck!

Abbey, wearing a yellow stripe top, sits on a doorstep holding Buddy, a Jack Russell terrier
Abbey, wearing a lemon yellow stripe top, holds Buddy, a terrier, over her shoulder

Meet Buddy

After he proved very popular on my Instagram page, garnering adoring comments from puppy fans everywhere, I just had to include Buddy in this blog post as well! Buddy is a six year old Jack Russell terrier and he is full of personality. He's very loving, he adores a tummy rub and an ear scratch! On every single one of his walks, Buddy will pick up an absolutely enormous stick and try to bring it back to the house. He will run past with it clenched between his teeth and smack everyone walking with him on the backs of the knees with it! Sometimes the stick he chooses is simply too big and one of us has to carry it back for him!

To take Buddy out on his stick collecting missions, I've been wearing the Causeway Breton Top in Lemon Stripe. I was so impressed with the quality of this top, from the super soft and breathable fabric to the chunky zip on the back of the neck. I've dressed it down for my dog walk with a pair of black jeans and matching yellow wellies but as the Breton is inspired by French fashions, I'm sure that you could make it more dressy by pairing it with a pinafore dress and ankle boots. This is very versatile addition to my wardrobe!

Abbey wearing a lilac shirt holds a Bantam chicken
Abbey wearing a lilac shirt, jeans and yellow wellies stands next to a yellow tractor tyre

Introducing the Chooks

Something that we're definitely not short of on our farm is chickens! We have a brood of tiny, fluffy Bantam chooks (one of which I'm holding in the above photo) and six Rhode Island Reds, which are much larger birds. All of their eggs are absolutely delicious, particularly when you cook one that's just been laid that morning. Our chickens are, of course, free range and they love scratching around in their runs outside. We do have a few very naughty chickens though! Just yesterday, my Mum had to chase around one of the Rhode Island Reds on three separate occasions when she escaped from the safety of her coop! This cheeky lady doesn't have a name yet so all suggestions are welcome!

Checking on the chickens is even more of a pleasure when wearing my Ocean Shirt in Grape Chambray. Lilac has been a very popular colour in spring fashion trends and this loosely fitted, relaxed shirt is the perfect way to stay fashionable without compromising on comfort. I especially love the distressed wooden button detailing. This shirt flatters the figure beautifully and looks great tucked into a pair of jeans - I'm sure I'll be wearing it for a long time to come!

Abbey sits on a pile of logs while terrier Buddy investigates the sticks

Which farm animals are your favourites? Are you a lover of lambs? An alpaca admirer? Or perhaps a donkey devotee?

Let me know in the comments below.