Sunday, 1 September 2019

A Breath of Fresh Air

I love a holiday as much as the next person. Nothing is better than switching on your out of office, leaving the work worries at work and just having some time to relax. This Summer I went on two holiday; Cornwall and the Lake District. So I thought I would tell you why sometime, there is nothing better than a UK holiday.

I find UK holidays so much less stressful, I think there is something about flying, having a limit on liquids and just making it to the airport on time that makes me a little anxious. For both our UK holidays this Summer we drove, giving us the flexibility to pack however we wanted to pack and leave when we were ready. Flying is exciting as it usually means getting away to somewhere hot, but a road trip with a great playlist and good car snacks can be just as fun!

Travelling by train is a bit of a different story as it then comes down to how much you are able to carry. But if you are travelling by car and you have enough space, you can almost pack as much as you want. This is particularly useful for a UK holiday as unpredictable weather means you'll need a bikini one second and a coat and fleece the next.

I know guaranteed sun is usually the reason most people go abroad, but let me try and put a positive spin on this! In Cornwall, we had a real mixed bag of weather. We had a few boiling days on the beach where we all ended up going a little pink. And a few rainy days going on long walks and wondering around harbour towns. Both were lovely and some of the best memories. UK weather can be frustrating, in The Lakes in rained most of the time, but it didn't stop us from having a great holiday.

The UK is beautiful. And if you haven't been to Cornwall or The Lakes I can't recommend it enough. There are some of the most incredible landscapes. In Cornwall I posted a picture of a beach we went to on one of the hottest days, and had all to ourselves; it looked like somewhere in Spain or a Greek Island. But where in Spain or a Greek Island are you going to find a huge beach all to yourselves.

So I hope this inspired you to maybe think about booking your next holiday somewhere in the UK. Next on my bucket list is Edinburgh. In fact, I've never actually been to Scotland! So watch this space...

Sunday, 14 April 2019

What I'm Listening To

I think that 2018 was the year I really got into podcasts and I haven't turned back since. I have a long commute to work each day, but I struggle to read on the train without feeling sick, so podcasts have been a game changer. Plus, it's nice to feel like you are learning something in the morning while being able to keep your eyes shut!

So I thought that I would share with you what I am listening to right now:

I couldn't not start with this one. I'm obsessed! It's just Dolly Alderton and Pandora Sykes having a chat about everything from what they are reading, popular culture, current affairs and everything in between. It's factual but also funny so that when I am listening on my commute I frequently have to pause the podcast and control my laughter so I don't appear crazy. I find it empowering and insightful and I could honestly listen to both of their voices forever.
Highlights: The in-jokes that they have and the book recommendations.

Happy place is a podcast where Fearne Cotton interviews all kinds of different people about their life and the things that bring happiness to it. It's raw and honest and truly inspirational. There are a lot of household names that appear but it is really lovely to be able to understand these people on a much more personal level.
Highlights: Gok Wan and Davina McCalls episodes are brilliant.

I am very interested at the moment in all things health and wellness related, but with so much information out there it is such a minefield. This podcast is great as it is breaks down all the fads that we read about online and is so researched focus. Dr Rupy Aujla, also known as The Doctors Kitchen, interviews leading industry specialists about everything from stress to heart health to illnesses.
Highlights: simple steps to a healthier lifestyle and not completely out of reach.

Ultimate girl crush Jessie Ware and her brilliant mother invite celebrities over for dinner to talk about their life and all things food. It's funny, casual and most of the time you feel as though you are sitting in a room with these people! Such a lovely thing to listen to on the way home from work.
Highlights: Food inspiration and Jessie's mum!

Going back to my obsession with wellness, Liz Earl offers an amazing podcast covering everything from cancer to food and skin and hair health. She talks to a wide variety of different industry specialists, breaking down assumptions and getting straight to the facts. It's insightful and interesting and perfect if you want to delve a little deeper into a particular area of knowledge.
Highlights: The level of depth they go into on each topic. She interviews people who really know their area of expertise and are still comfortable to say when they don't know.

I could talk about Sheerluxe all day! Their website is the only thing that I want to catch up on during my lunch break and the podcast is just as good. It's a general guided catch between a group of the girls that work at Sheerluxe meaning it's natural and funny. There is a little bit of a cross over between the articles that they publish that week and the podcast, but it is still great to hear different view points.
Highlights: Like having a chat with your best girl friends!

Podcast by Dolly Alderton (also from The High Low) based on her book Everything I Know About Love, which I am currently reading. She interviews a wide range of different people, but mostly from creative fields, asking them about the loves of their life, from people to passions. It's beautiful and such a well thought out podcast.
Highlights: Stanley Tucci's episode was both moving and utterly brilliant in the way that he articulated himself. And having just read This Is Going To Hurt I loved listening to Adam Kay's episode talking about his book and his love of the NHS.

I've been following Ella for a while but it's great to see her branch out beyond food and health, to other topics life skincare, stress and building a brand. Sometimes it is just her and her husband chatting and other episodes are an interview.
Highlights: Building a Brand with Chrissy Rucker, founder of The White Company.

This is just one episode of this podcast but I had to mention it as it was absolutely brilliant. It was mentioned on The High Low so I downloaded it and had a listen. The episode is a three hour long interview with Johann Hari talking about drugs, depression and loneliness. It's so interesting and draws on so many different real life stories. It sounds long but after I was searching on the podcast app for any other interviews with Johann Hari.
Highlights: Something completely different to what I would usually listen to but I found it fascinating.

So this is everything I am currently listening to. But just like book recommendations I am always on the look out for a new Podcast to get stuck into. So please let me know if you have any other Podcasts that you are loving at the moment.

Saturday, 2 February 2019

New Year, New Goals

I realise that we are already well into 2019 (already in February) but I thought it was about time that I returned to my little corner of the internet to update you on my life - it's been a while!

So around the same time that I stopped posting on here I started my job, returning to ASOS as a Buyer's Administrator and I moved out of my family home and in with my boyfriend. I love my job so much and the independence of not living at home, but it has been an adjustment. And I think it would be fair to say that other things in my life have taken a bit of a back seat, like this blog.

For a long time I felt so guilty about not posting, and then the more I thought about it the less I wanted to come back. It has been a good few months since I last posted, but I've chosen to move on and start again. It feels like the new year is the perfect time to do that. So I'm going to start with some things that I want to do more and less of in 2019.

I'm earning my first proper salary and I want to start putting money away every month into my savings account, rather than just whittling all my money away on food, clothes and after work drinks! I know my future self is going to thank me for this one.

I'm not doing Veganuary and I'm not even going vegetarian, but I am going to try and cut down my meat consumption to once or twice a week. I am going to start basing my meals around the vegetables and hopefully this is all going to make me feel much healthier.

Along side my blog, exercise is something that I have pushed to the back on my mind recently. My job role means that I spend a large amount of my day sitting and a desk meaning it is even more important that I do something a few times a week that gets my heart rate up. I've started running again and realised how much I love it. Even managed to drag my boyfriend Jack out of bed and on a Sunday morning run with me!

I can definitely hold my hands up and say that I don't have anywhere near as many friends as I did in school, and I'm really okay with that. What I have got is friends that I love who make me happy as soon as I see them and leave me with a warm fuzzy feeling when we say goodbye. It's genuine and real and that's more that enough for me.

Following on from what I said above, I need to make more time for my real friends. It's so easy to finish work and just get home, have dinner and watch some Netflix (especially in Winter!). I need to see more of the people that make me feel good, planning starts now...

I need to let go of social media and not spending hours scrolling through other people's seemingly perfect life. I know that it's not good for me, and for lack of a better world it makes me a jealous person. I want to look like someone else, to be where I'm not (half way around the world on a tropical beach) and I want to own materialistic items that I really don't need or can't afford. I am replacing scrolling through Instagram with...

Podcasts on my commute, books in the evening, cinema with friends at the weekend, and maybe even reading the news in my lunch break. These things make me feel knowledgable and inspired, plus they are great dinner party topics of conversation!

I actually really like this new method of resolutions. Rather than to say "I am going to completely give up chocolate forever" because we all know that won't last more than about two days, it's a lot kinder to myself to say "let's do a bit more of this and a bit less of that". I guess to summarise my resolutions it is just to be kinder to myself. If a bit of chocolate in the evening is going to make me happy I'm going to eat some chocolate without any guilt.

Monday, 8 October 2018

Mint Velvet Leopard Print

It feels like Autumn is still just beginning as the sun is still shining and people are still walking around in t-shirts. But Autumn clothing has been trickling into stores since August which means that some brands are already having sales. When I was in town last week I spotted that Mint Velvet were already having a mid-season sale so I though that I would have a little browse. I spotted this leopard print jumper and thought it was a bit bold, but that I would try it on while my mum and auntie were also trying some clothes one. Long story short, I love it! It's cool and fun, but think the monochromatic colourway softens the look. I chose to size up by two sizes as I wanted the jumper to be a bit slouchy and oversized, so I can roll the sleeves up and do a "half-tuck" into jeans.

As this is a fairly bold jumper I would keep the rest of my outfit really simple. I think blue or black denim jeans and black boots and some very delicate jewellery would work perfectly. But I would also like to try and style this with a white shirt underneath for a modern street style look. Or with a black midi skirt and some white trainers.

Mint Velvet Navy Leopard Jacquard Knit

Having a little browse in Mint Velvet inspired me to have a look online and see what else had gone into sale. There are some lovely pieces, including the khaki shacket that I am still obsessed with which you can read all about here. So I thought I would also share with you some of my other favourite sale picks.

Oatmeal Luxe Faux Fur Jacket

Black Fringe High Sandal

Dove Belted Tapered Trouser

Khaki Star Pocket Jacket

Ivory Stripe Shirt

Shae Print Maxi Skirt

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

London Fashion Week Festival

Yesterday I was lucky enough to go to London Fashion Week Festival with my mum. It has become a bit of a tradition for us to go whenever we can, as previously I would have been back at university in Manchester at this time. I had such an amazing day out, felt lovely in what I was wearing and even treated myself to a little something from one of the stalls. I have no idea how this post is going to turn out, maybe more like a diary entry, but I thought I would share it all with you.

Where better to start than with the most important meal of the day! Our time slot for LFW was 11am-4pm, but we didn't really want to buy food inside the venue as it is usually pretty expensive and there aren't very many options. Instead I took my mum to Grind in Covent Garden, somewhere I had also never been before but I had followed for ages on Instagram and was desperate to go! We both ordered a coffee and a cooked breakfast which was amazing and fairly reasonable. I would definitely recommend it, but if you are looking for something more instagramable then maybe try one of their other locations.

Such a lovely selection of clothes, accessories and homeware. I fell in love with a dress from Lily and Lionel (here), although restrained as I am still yet to start my new job! What was really great was there was a a huge variety of product and price points, meaning there was something for everyone and it was a great place to buy presents. Rosie Fortescue was there with her beautiful collection of jewellery and I was so impressed by what a brilliant sales woman she is. And I also caught a glimpse of Hugo Taylor and Millie Mackintosh! But on top of all that my favourite thing to do was just seeing what everyone else was wearing. Everyone looked so fashionable, whether they were wearing something really smart and tailored or edgy and cool!

Mum and I decided to skip the fashion show and instead go and see a talk. The talk I chose was from SheerLuxe and was a live viewing of their twice weekly show which I watch religiously on YouTube. It was so entertain, yet educational and everything I hoped it would be. There were some incredible affordable clothes featured from their High Street Edit that I have added to my Wishlist (mostly from & Other Stories). As well as a very interesting talk about all things beauty with the gorgeous Samantha Freedman. I even made some notes! Plus my mum, who had no idea about a lot of the people or fashion brands mentioned thought it was wonderful!

I had been waiting for the perfect occasion to wear my & Other Stories dress that I bought at the beginning of Summer as it is a more autumnal style. It was something I saw and loved, saved up for and then treated myself when I could, so it it really special and makes me feel amazing. I think I should try and buy more pieces this way. When you wait a bit you are sure that you really love something, rather than making an irrational decision.
I paired the dress with some beige studded ankle boots (a Chloe copy) which I bought from Office last year. They keep the dress elegant while being comfortable enough for me to spend a whole day in. Plus they were a nod to the cowboy boot trend, which is really big right now. I wore my emerald green bag for a subtle pop of colour and all of my favourite gold jewellery.

There was so many beautiful pieces that caught my eye, but I managed to stay sensible! I've already mentioned the dress from Lily and Lionel which I will link here. The fabric was stunning and the wrap style was really flattering, but the price was too high considering I don't actually have an event to wear the dress to. I've saved it to my ever growing Pinterest Wishlist though so watch this space! What I did buy though was something that I was actually going to purchase anyway - how very sensible of me! This Summer I got my helix pierced, and though it is still healing at the moment I will eventually swap it for a gold hoop. I've had my eye on these ones from Astrid and Miyu (here) for a while as they are really small, but they have the beautiful diamante detail. I managed to get 10% off with London Fashion Week discount but you can received the same disount on your first order by signing up to their news letter.

Speak soon, xx


Friday, 21 September 2018

The Basics Wishlist

As I spent today bagging up my Summer clothes and bringing my Winter wardrobe down from the attic I thought it would be the perfect time to have a little look at what is new in for this season. In a bid to make smarter purchases I am trying to invest in things that are considered part of a "Capsule Wardrobe" and are timeless in terms of both style and quality. I have managed to keep my ever-growing wishlist to just four items that I am loving for A/W 18/19. Most of these are more on the expensive side, but maybe if I start saving and wait for the sales...

1. Massimo Dutti Check Wool Blazer - here

2. The Kooples Emily Small Faux Python Bag in Black - here

3. & Other Stories Alpaca Blend Sweater in Oatmeal - here

4. Jigsaw Boucle Tweed Coat in Navy - here


Speak soon, xx

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

Tips To Cure a Cold

I'm sitting here feeling a little a though I have been hit by a bus...I have in fact got a Summer cold. I am shivering and sweating, sneezing almost once a minute and blown my nose so much that I have given myself a headache. And as you can probably guess I am feeling a little sorry for myself.

As someone with an seemingly incompetent immune system and the ability to catch a cold from anyone within a mile radius, I am unfortunately fairly used to feeling a little under the weather. However, this has meant that I have developed a strategy so that I can feel better as soon as possible and not let a little cold get in my way! As the weather (finally) starts to drop and "Back to School" is among us, colds are pretty common. So I thought that this would be the perfect time to share my tips on how to cope with a cold and get over it a little quicker.

Disclaimer: It should go without saying that I have a degree in Fashion and AM NOT a doctor.

As soon as I feel as thought I am coming down with something I take a paracetamol. Sometimes if you get there early enough you can even catch it before it develops into a full blown cold!

Not only will cold water feel really nice if your throat is a bit sore but it is so important to stay hydrated right now. I like to drink warm water with honey and lemon whenever I am feeling a little under the weather, it tastes amazing and it really lovely for soothing a sore throat.

I like to do this anyway as part of my skincare routine to open up pores before a face mask, however, steaming your face is also amazing for clearing sinuses. Make sure that the water isn't boiling, use something to protect your eyes and have a tissue at hand for when your nose inevitably starts streaming!

While resting when you are ill is important I also think it is good to get outside for a bit of fresh air. I wouldn't recommend doing any hardcore exercise when you are ill, but something like a walk or yoga is just what the doctor ordered!

This might be a personal one but whenever I have a cold and I eat any dairy (but particularly chocolate) my throat just feels so sore. It's natural when you are feeling ill to want to snuggle up in bed with a load of unhealthy food, but now is actually the time to eat really healthily and help your body to recover.

Similar to a facial steam, the stream from a hot bath will really help to clear sinuses. This is particularly beneficial before bed.


I hope this helps any of you who may also be experiencing a Summer cold! And if you have any other tips, please share them in the comments.
Speak soon, xx