Dear Joanne: festive ski wear | The holiday wardrobe

Holidays are ruined when you can’t fit into your favourite thing. For me it’s a pair of pirate-style aviators. This must mean that my dad is set to become a visiting optician or that I’ve become the Guardian’s style supremo or that on screen I’m nude rather than my usual, bushy-mouthed red carpet glory (but I did just become the Guardian’s style supremo so that must be it). While it’s a deep predicament, hopefully my situation can soon be solved by an ingenious solution: for those who like it, how about getting my dad to cover up for Christmas?

This year, however, holiday-wear is far from flattering. Saturated summer heat means my legs take up the majority of my clothing. Often they have no skirt at all. So, like a turtle on the beach, the only option left was to bag some swimwear that vaguely resembled, well, swimwear. I went for the essential: the waist-covering, under-woolie La Perla bra (£112) and naughty/nice cossie (from £60) that my kids insisted on insisting on. The cuts and intricate detailing at the back were perfect.

Also a perfect choice for a grown woman is a pair of white printed, swimwear-style trousers. It’s ideal for wearing while trudging across fields after swimming and now that you have been cleared to go sunbathing (old school, with my dad in tow), it’s the weekend dress – the old classic from Australia, circa 1962.

And what would a holiday be without sunglasses? It had been my plan to choose Ray-Ban instead of aviators, but a really nice pair of tinted shades in beautiful marbled green (from £60) and blue suede with gold chain detail (from £50) won my heart.

Leave the shorts with the kids, family will thank you | The season of sun

Joanne Davidson’s favourite holiday reads

The Watershed by Will Self. I love a short book with space between paragraphs, as the sheer expanse of Aisling’s desert planet gives it the air of a big non-fiction treat for the work week.

Colour Splash by Libby Brooks. An enigmatic, yet exciting, debut that fascinated me from the first page. Will finish it in eight days.

A Birder’s Guide to Everything by Steve Jones. This former Guardian columnist’s tongue-in-cheek account of seeing the Northern Lights is a delight to read.

Thomas & Friends Cookie Monster. A terrific story about the largest insect. (And I know things get dark in the trees, so why not get some really good fairy lights?)

• Joanne is reviewing books on holiday with Emily Whitfield and Carolyn Harris

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