Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Last Chance To Enter

Do you fancy winning some soap & glory goodies?

How about the perfect red nail varnish?

and some super cute jewellery?

You have until 12pm midnight to enter. ENTER HERE.

Don't forget to shop my closet too :)

Sunday, 29 August 2010

The Sunday Click List (No. 6)

'the sunday click list' is a weekly post where i share a selection of my favourite online hot spots that i've been clicking on during the past 7 days (see last week's HERE and view the entire series HERE).
bluebird vintage:
i've always loved the 'idea' of vintage clothing but the reality is not always as appealing. sifting through eBay, charity shops and car boot sales is time consuming and often fruitless, so i was very excited to stumble upon bluebird vintage this week. the stock is beautifully presented! i love that detailed measurements are offered and the prices aren't too shabby either. international shipping available.
lessons in beauty: a pretty awesome article about body image and how to raise daughters who believe they're enough in a world that is simply not designed to cultivate high self esteem in it's women. if you have daughters, or there's a chance you might do some day, this is definitely worth a read.
a brief guide to life: life is simple, no? geez, i wish. sometimes it feels so unrelentlessly complicated. this is a quick guide which links to various amazing articles about how to lead a more fulfilling life.
spotify: free, instant and legal access to over 8 million tracks. the ultimate music download and sharing site for music lovers. enjoy!
mila's daydreams: the cutest thing i've seen in a long time. mila's mum, adele, imagines mila's dream as she sleeps and trys to recreate it. every 'dream' she captures is shared on her blog. with more than 33,000 fans on facebook obviously other people find it cute too.
{ 'laundry day' by adele enerson }

now over to you. found any cool sites this week? do you have a blog or online store of your own? if you do, don't be shy, drop me a comment with your link and you might be featured next week!

Trouble Following etc...

hey girls!! i LOVE it when you hop on over and leave me a comment with your blog link - i've been a little slow on checking them all out this week (and haven't had chance to comment all that much) but i promise i will :) the BIG problem i'm having is that i keep getting an error message every time i try to follow new blogs. when i said i was a blog addict i wasn't lying. do you think there is a limit to how many blogs i can follow? surely not? well, just so you know i will be following you as soon as i can.

also, i've noticed a few questions left on old posts over the last few days (which i have now answered). going forward, if you can see a post is more than a week old it would be best to email me with your question instead. don't be shy - i answer every email i get (i'm not super speedy but usually within 3 days).


EDITED TO ADD: from your comments it seems like a lot of you are having the same problem! lovely dollface has a neat solution which seems to work ~

"I copied the blog url, went to my dashboard (under the list of blogs you follow) and clicked on add, then pasted the url and it seems to have worked."

Saturday, 28 August 2010

100 Things: Part Seven

happy saturday, my friends! i hope you're all making the most of the long weekend :) i braved the rain and cold (can you believe it's august?!) to go shopping in manchester today. zara rocked my world. seriously, i got all excited about fashion again for the first time in months. i only picked up a little khaki jacket but will certainly be revisiting later this week when i have more time to browse. feminine tan brogues, vintage inspired tea dresses, floral harem pants, the most perfectly distressed denim jacket, black nubuck gladiator heels, chunky cardigans...you name it they had it. zara - you can have all my money; i could care less about saving up when you sell clothes that beautiful.

moving on to the good stuff...

'100 things' is where i identify 100 things that make me happy. i'm posting 10 every saturday for 10 weeks. you can find the rest of the series here: part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, part 6 (you should see an image for every 'thing' - if you don't then the page hasn't loaded properly, which happens often and is annoying, thanks blogger!)

#61 audio books (most recently: the four agreements)

#62 amazing music that awakens the soul ('river flows in you' might be my fave)

{ God, he's gorgeous. }

#63 clear skin paired with red lips (worth all the effort)

#64 detoxing on smoothies

#65 sharing a common interest with someone else

#66 an even, perfect suntan against gold jewellery

#67 freckles

#68 soaking up the serenity of an english country village (bunbury, cheshire is my fave)

#69 that awesome candle smell upon entering a room

#70 eating a 'healthy' muffin (with a cup of tea, of course)

{ all images courtesy of weheartit.com }

Friday, 27 August 2010

Current Bodycare Routine:

did you miss my current hair styling routine? see that HERE.

i've never spent that much time taking care of the skin on my body. my skin has never been problematic so the thought rarely crossed my mind. we're all conditioned to pay an awful lot more attention to the skin on our face. my ex always commented on my skin (in a good way!) when i used only one item from this routine religiously. since then i've added a few more products into the mix and i couldn't be happier with the result.

my current bodycare routine is as follows:

♥ johnson's 24 hour moisture extra rich bodywash. around £2 but often to be found on offer. i've used this or a variation of it for over 10 years and will not cannot use anything else. BUT i don't use it on it's own...i have a shower puff like this one (although mine was 99p and hot pink, so infinitely better) which makes all the difference. it lathers up the gel so you use less, plus the effect it has is equivalent to using a body scrub or body mitt. it makes my body smooth as can be - as my boyfriend ex would often say.

vaseline sheer infusion body lotion (vitamin burst) £4.99. i won this in a blog competition hosted by gorgeous victoria. i'm so glad i won it as i just know the chances of me having picked this up on a whim in the supermarket were very slim. the smell is gorgeous (sort of citrusy - vitamin c!) but i love that once the cream is absorbed the scent doesn't linger and compete with whatever perfume i apply. it's not greasy at all and leaves the skin velvety to the touch with a gentle 'healthy' sheen. having tried hundreds of body lotions over the years i must say that this is my absolute fave. you'll still need something a bit more intense on hand for elbows and knees which is when i turn to my trusty body butter:

body shop coconut body butter £12.50. who has yet to try this? it's a girl's best friend. i can't personally stomach the price which is why my parents have sneaked one in my christmas stocking every year for as long as i can remember. i think i've tried every 'flavour' and have been happy with them all. as you'd expect from a 'butter' this has intense moisturising abilities! i use it roughly once a week before bed wherever i need it. currently on offer at 2 for £15.

soap & glory hand food £4.50. this is just a great hand cream which i discovered recently. the positives are immediately apparent: non greasy, very quickly absorbed, smells good and does the job...plus the packaging is pretty cute. what more could you ask for? i wish i'd got the mini travel size as it's only £2.25 and would have been ideal for throwing in my handbag.

dove summer glow fair to medium £4.99. for some reason i've spent almost 2 years ignoring the hype over this one. it took a tanning disaster courtesy of a (probably out of date) bottle of johnson's holiday skin (never. ever. again) to force me to pick this up in sainsburys (on offer for £2.74!). all i can say is - this stuff is freakin' awesome. having used it for just 2 consecutive days my friends could not stop raving about how nicely tanned and healthy i looked. so natural. so beautiful. so easy. i will never be without this. ever.

now over to you. what have you been using to keep your body in tip top condition this summer? do you have any bodycare raves? have you tested out any of the products included in my current routine?

Decor Inspiration: Glass Jars

happy friday girls! the weekend has finally arrived :) thanks for all your wonderful comments on yesterday's post. don't forget there's only a few more days to get your hands on some soap & glory and a bunch of other goodies.


the following images dropped into my inbox today. a few snaps from anthropologie's kings road store. who knew a bunch of simple glass jars and bottles could look so good? i think i might start collecting some together to display in my new home. no doubt i'll find some in my parent's garage, local charity shops and car boot sales.

i'm also mesmerised by the collection of polaroids pinned up on the last image. such a quirky way to cover a space. my next project perhaps?!

i did a little search on flickr and came up with this. doesn't it look awesome?

i love everything about this shot.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

My Filofax Obsession

In last week's 'Things I love Thursday' I introduced my new obsession: a lavender Domino Personal Filofax (leather look PU / 130 x 190mm). Several readers commented on it so I thought it was only right that I share the details with you all.

There was actually a touch of drama surrounding the purchase of this beauty. Afterall, the course of true love never runs smoothly. I originally ordered it in cherry red from WHSmith as they have a cracking offer on - £15.75 shipped. At the time of ordering, the site stated 1-2 weeks for delivery, which I was cool with given the bargain price. 3 weeks passed and I realised my darling Filofax had not yet arrived. I logged onto WHSmith and was so annoyed to see the words 'awaiting stock' adjacent to my order details. I immediately emailed to cancel my order so that I could order elsewhere - preferably from a seller with a functional stock control system. Tut Tut.

In the end I purchased it in lavender for £21 shipped from this eBay seller. The Filofax came within 24 hours of payment and it was probably the best service I've ever experienced on eBay. And I bet you can guess what happened next? Yes, WHSmith ignored my cancellation email and one day later a cherry red Filofax dropped through my door to torment me...because if I'm being honest it's even more gorgeous than the lavender. But back to the shop it went.

I've tried a multitude of different methods of personal organisation and until I stumbled across the Filofax nothing had quite fitted with my lifestyle. I was sick of buying a diary every year, as well as carrying an address book, notepad and Moleskine. This way, everything is bundled together in one and I just repurchase replacement inserts as and when I require them.

The Filofax has 'extras' which although they aren't necessary are still cool to have - like the fold out world map, credit card holders and 17cm ruler. Above all else, I love that i can open up my diary and see a full week in front of me over two pages and that all my important addresses are now integrated. The design feature that ultimately caught my attention about this particular Filofax series is the elastic band which wraps round the diary. It reminds me of another era. Didn't Indiana Jones use something similar around a battered journal he carried on all his adventures? I'm a sucker for anything vintage inspired.

When I discovered the to-do list with ready made check boxes I knew I'd made the right decision in purchasing this organiser. Regular readers will know how much I love lists, especially to-do lists, and that I find the physical act of ticking things off rather gratifying!

For those of you who might be interested in including a Filofax on your Christmas wish list here's a summary of useful info:
♥ The size i bought is 'Personal' which is, in my mind, the perfect size. Smaller options are 'Mini' and 'Pocket' but they're not my cup of tea.

♥ The Filofax buyer's guide is worth a look: check it out HERE.

♥ The cheapest price on the net for the style I purchased is around £15 - in brown, red or black.

♥ Two other lovely ladies also LOVE their Filofax: Gala Darling and The Glamourous Grad Student.

♥ Ask family and friends if they have an unused one lying around which they could donate to you. After mine arrived I got talking to my dad and it turns out he has a vintage deep aubergine leather Filofax from the early 90s in mint condition. If I'd known I would have lovingly 'borrowed' that but instead, I've encouraged him to buy new inserts and jump on the bandwagon.

♥ The key to getting the best out of your organiser is to customise the heck out of it! for inspiration check out these awesome accessories, all designed to fit inside your Filofax: sticky notes, stickers, mirror (!), calculator and zip lock envelope.

Now over to you ~ how do you organise your life? Do you buy a diary every year? Are you more of a tech geek, making use of Google Calendar or iPhone apps? Leave a comment and tell all!


Things I Love Thursday

i've had a ton of requests for a post about undereye concealers. i have literally 4 or 5 of the most popular in my possession and am busy compiling a post comparing each. watch this space!


{ to view the entire series of 'things i love thursday' click HERE }
1. nail art.

i remember this was 'huge' back when i was in my early teens. one of my school friends was a master at it even at the baby faced aged of 13 and would come into class with the most amazing creations on her nails. it seems like nail art is having a resurgence in 2010. will you be trying it?
2. manchester. sure, there are times when i wish i lived in london but deep down there's nowhere i'd rather be in the UK. manchester is my city. i love pretty much everything about it. it definitely feels like home. i can't wait to escape the surburbs (and my parent's house!) and be in the thick of things.
3. etsy. how addictive is this?! i got one of my favourite original art prints here a couple of years ago but haven't searched around the site for quite some time. this week i rekindled my love affair with etsy. oh, how i've missed it.
4. saving up. saving money is great isn't it? i much prefer to see my money in the bank rather than hanging in my closet :) it's hard but worth it. my plans are finally falling into place.
5. yoga. one of my goals for 2010 was to practice yoga. this week i finally tried it out in a class environment for the first time. i'd already given a few at home DVDs a shot so kinda new what to expect. i also found this article 'a beginner's guide to yoga' very useful to read before i went. have you tried yoga? what do you think?

what are you lovin' this week?

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

bobbi brownextra eye repair cream

over the past few months i had noticed my undereye area becoming dryer. my usual eye cream, clinique all about eyes, just wasn't cutting it. it came to the point that i could barely apply concealer without it looking cakey. i did a little research online and came to the conclusion that the bobbi brown 'extra' eye repair cream might be up to the job.

the price tag is hefty, there is no doubt about that. i'd never recommend somebody pay this for an eye cream unless they truly have a problem eye area. for me, it came to the point where i couldn't apply concealer and for someone who has a tendency towarsds dark circles this really affected the look of my face.

the tub is large. i've been using the cream for around 2 weeks morning and night and it still looks like a new, unused tub. a little really does go a long way. i can see this lasting maybe even 12 months which makes the price a little easier to swallow.

and the result?

absolutely amazing. really. it's a thick cream but when you warm it in your fingers first before applying (as per the instructions) it melts into the skin quickly and easily. it leaves a slightly dewy finish which makes application of concealer a breeze. i loved this cream the first day i applied it but the results have improved further over time. it resolves dryness immediately and i noticed less puffiness after a few days. bobbi claims that it targets dark circles but i can't say i've noticed an improvement in that respect. perhaps there will be with continued use? i don't have much in the way of fine lines but i'm sure this would be a godsend for those who do. it creates the perfect base for foundation and concealer.

a lot of eye creams irritate my eyes or at least make them water a little. this cream is very different, as somehow it does not 'travel' - it stays exactly where you apply it and has never entered my eye. no irritation, no tears, no bloodshot eyes. a miracle!

don't forget the key to application is to warm the cream by rubbing between your fingers. very easy but very important!

rating = 10/10 (i will buy again & wouldn't consider another eye cream)

what's your favourite eye cream? have you ever had a problem eye area? would you be happy to pay £35 for an eye cream?

Monday, 23 August 2010

How To: Refinish Furniture

remember the bedside cabinet project i posted recently? i received a few comments and emails asking for some step by step guidance on how i achieved that result. if you have any further questions just leave it in the comments section!
1. find a piece of solid wood furniture. it must be solid wood - not veneered. i picked up my cabinets on eBay for £15 for the pair. other places to try are car boot sales or why not ask friends and family if they have any surplus lying around? in chorlton, manchester (near where i live) there are lots of secondhand furniture stores (don't forget to negotiate the price!) and i'm sure you'd find similar in less upmarket areas in your region.

2. preparation is key! you should aim to start with a piece of furniture that is already in good condition but don't be scared if there's the odd repair to do. i had a few unsightly areas to fill in - where joints didn't meet each other perfectly and to cover the screws which fixed the 'feet' to the cabinet. i used an all purpose polyfilla that we had lying around.

3. sand it. my bedside cabinets had a very light varnish applied. sanding roughed this up, ready for painting. i don't think you need to go crazy and spend a lot of time on this. i didn't even use an electric sander - i used sandpaper around a block of wood in my hand. take care to clean away every last bit of dust before you start painting.

4. paint it. now for the fun stuff! i painted mine outside under the blazing sunshine. the positive in doing this was that each coat dried really fast so i was able to get several coats done in one day. wherever you paint make sure it's well ventilated. a garage with the door open would be ideal. i used a brush for the fiddly areas and a roller for the larger parts. i'm not going to lie - this was far more time consuming than i thought it would be. if you have access to a paint sprayer you'll have a much easier time and the result will be better.

i used 'one coat' matt emulsion in pure brilliant white and applied 3 coats.

5. distress it. once your furniture is newly painted you might find it hard to whip out the sandpaper once more to distress the edges but it looks fantastic, i promise. without distressing, the piece would look too generic and 'new'. i rubbed away the paint on the edges and corners on randomly selected parts - i went with my gut feeling and it worked.

6. varnish it. i used ronseal quick drying clear satin varnish. i applied two coats all over but did four on the top which will experience heavy wear. i used a high quality harris brush (which doesn't shed hairs) for the best application. this varnish applies beautifully so long as you go easy and don't apply too thickly.

7. finishing touches. the handles you choose can 'make' your piece so choose carefully. mine are sparkly glass and were only £3.49 each from B&Q (in store, not online). B&Q have a huge selection, which you'll find located in the door furniture aisle. homebase is another store that's worth a look. if you want to splash out and get something even more special try anthropologie.

and the final result:

good luck if you decide to try it!

Sunday, 22 August 2010

The Sunday Click List (No. 5)

'the sunday click list' is a weekly post where i share a selection of my favourite online hot spots that i've been clicking on during the past 7 days (see last week's HERE and view the entire series HERE).
{ afeiter: helen }
afeiter: just another great blog i found recently. helen is a librarian who likes baking and fashion. i find her outfit shots unique and interesting and love her use of bold, primary colours. her cake creations are nothing short of amazing.

the power of make-up: it always amazes me when i see the transformation that make-up can achieve. when done well it can make a girl go from average to stunning in no time at all. this particular transformation is astounding.

closet organisation by 'making it lovely': in my dreams my closet looks like this.

how to make fabric panel wall art: this cool project is one of the next on my list as i already have the 'frame' (left over from this large noticeboard) and just need to choose a funky fabric pattern to stretch over it. it'll go above my sofa in my new lounge.

43 things: the world's largest goal setting community. this site ultimately pushed me in the direction of starting this blog so i have a lot to thank it for! to find me on 43 things click HERE. although, my goals are also update on my blog HERE.

what have you been clicking on this week?

Saturday, 21 August 2010

100 Things: Part Six

thanks for all the amazing detailed comments on yesterday's post 'tattoo love' - i never knew so many people had tattoos. and yours all sounds so beautiful :)


'100 things' is where i identify 100 things that make me happy. i'm posting 10 every saturday for 10 weeks. you can find the rest of the series here: part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5 (you should see an image for every 'thing' - if you don't then the page hasn't loaded properly, which is annoying, thanks blogger!)

#51 photography (the love of my life)

#52 chatting to a cute boy

#53 birthdays

#54 getting something for free!

#55 lying by an amazing pool on holiday (feels like heaven)

#56 a newly made bed with soft clean sheets

#57 glugging on ice cold water

#58 body pump
(find out more about that here)

#59 receiving a great gift

#60 giving a gift that the recipient loves

{ all photos courtesy of weheartit.com }