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28.4.14

Printed Tea Dress

Angora cardigan: H&M (similar)
Tea dress: Primark (similar)
Tights: Pretty Polly
Shoes: George (similar)
Bag: Topshop (similar)

Only 2 more days til we go to Paris! Exciting times... and no, I haven't started packing yet haha. I still don't know what to wear and hope the weather is nice (:
If you've been to Paris, do you have any suggestions of where to go/what to do/any tips you would like to share with me? 

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

25.4.14

Reading | A Midsummer Tights Dream by Louise Rennison



This time the funny Tallulah Casey goes back to Dother Hall for the winter courses and Lullah reunites with her friends, the Tree Sisters, Vaisey, Jo, Flossie and Honey.

The lovely Honey got discovered in the summer so she'll be going to Hollywood! What will the girls do without Honey's expert boy advice? 

And maybe even more importantly, why does Cain seems to appear out of nowhere everywhere Tallulah goes?

Get involved in Tallulah's performing arts and confusing boys world, narrated by Lullah herself in her unique funny-yet-naive way!

Find A Midsummer Tights Dream* at WHSmith.

Have you read Louise Rennison's books?

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

23.4.14

Food: Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing


Carrot cupcakes with cream cheese icing recipe
Carrot cupcakes with cream cheese icing recipe
Carrot cupcakes with cream cheese icing recipe
Carrot cupcakes with cream cheese icing recipe

Carrot cake is one of my favourite cakes (the other one is cheesecake, in case you were wondering haha), so I thought I would give this recipe a try, as I can't find a shop-bought one that tastes just as I want it to! (Once I discovered asda carrot cupcakes, they were amazing, of course the next time I looked for them they didn't have them anymore ;( )

Ingredients
(serves 16)

2 eggs
175 g/6 oz molasses sugar
200 ml/7 fl oz sunflower oil
200 g/7 oz coarsely grated carrots
226 g/8 oz wholemeal flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp ground cinnamon
whole nutmeg, grated (about 1 tsp)
115 g/4 oz roughly chopped walnuts

topping

115 g/4 oz half-fat cream cheese
4 tbsp butter, softened
85 g/3 oz icing sugar
1 tsp grated lemon rind
1 tsp grated orange rind

Method

1. In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs until well blended and add the sugar and oil. Mix well. Add the grated carrot, sift in the flour, baking soda and spices, then add the walnuts. Mix everything together until well incorporated.

2. Grease and line a 20-cm/8-in round cake tin. Spread the mixture into the prepared cake tin and bake in the centre of a preheated oven, 190°C/375°F/Gas Mark 5, for 40-50 minutes until the cake is nicely risen, firm to the touch and has begun to shrink away slightly from the edge of the tin. Remove from the oven and cool in the tin until just warm, then turn out onto a cooling rack.

3. To make the topping, put all the ingredients into a mixing bowl and beat together for 2-3 minutes until really smooth.

4. When the cake is completely cold, spread with the topping, smooth over with a fork and allow to firm up a little before cutting into 16 portions. Store in an airtight container in a cool place for up to 1 week.

Some of my recipe modifications: that time I didn't have wholemeal flour, so I used self raising plain flour with a bit of oats mixed in for fibre. I normally use less sugar than indicated and even though I used a tiny bit less oil than the recipe, found the cakes to be a bit oily. I used full fat cream cheese but didn't add any butter. Don't forget that when baking cupcakes they need less time in the oven. 

What's your favourite cake?

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

21.4.14

Pink Coat

pink coat
pink coat
pink coat
Pink Coat: New Look
Angora Jumper: H&M (similar)
Cotton Shirt: H&M (similar)
Skirt: Primark (similar)
Tights: Pretty Polly
Shoes: Topshop (similar)
Bag: Topshop (similar)

This is one of a more feminine outfit, inspired on the beautiful designs of Orla Kiely. I'm wearing my lovely pink coat from new look that I just had to get because I fell in love with the pink coat trend, I think it's a nice colour for spring but also it adds an extra pop of colour to an autumn or winter outfit.

Do you like pink coats?

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

18.4.14

Chasing The Sun: Oasis 1993–1997 Exhibition

Chasing The Sun: Oasis 1993–1997 Exhibition
Chasing The Sun: Oasis 1993–1997 Exhibition
Chasing The Sun: Oasis 1993–1997 Exhibition
Chasing The Sun: Oasis 1993–1997 Exhibition
Chasing The Sun: Oasis 1993–1997 Exhibition

Today we went to London to see the Oasis exhibition Chasing The Sun: Oasis 1993–1997.
They showcase previously unseen photographs by Jill Furminovsky, Paul Slattery, Tom Sheehan, Kevin Cummins and Jamie Fry.

Also displayed are some of the instruments used by the bands on early albums, as well as merchandise, items from the album sleeves, tour documentation and some video footage.

My favourite part of the exhibition was probably the recreation of Oasis' 1994 debut album cover 'Definitely Maybe', where you could pose and have your picture taken.

If you love Oasis you'll love this exhibition but you better get there quick, as it will only be open until April 22.

Oasis exhibition Chasing The Sun: Oasis 1993–1997 at Londonewcastle Project Space in Shoreditch, London.

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

16.4.14

New in: March 2014

Origins skincare, smashbox wonder vision brush set
Origins skincare, smashbox wonder vision brush set
Origins skincare, smashbox wonder vision brush set
Origins skincare, smashbox wonder vision brush set
Origins skincare, smashbox wonder vision brush set
cotton t shirt, mohair wool cardigan
cotton t shirt, mohair wool cardigan
cotton t shirt, mohair wool cardigan
wool wide brim hat, oatmeal jumper, leopard print skirt
wool wide brim hat, oatmeal jumper, leopard print skirt
wool wide brim hat, oatmeal jumper, leopard print skirt
wool wide brim hat, oatmeal jumper, leopard print skirt

Origins Skincare Set: Boots
Smashbox Brush Set: Boots
Mohair cardigan: H&M (similar)
Cotton t-shirt: H&M (similar)
Wool Hat: H&M (similar)
Oatmeal jumper: H&M (similar)
Leopard print skirt: H&M (similar)

Last month's purchases, got all of them with a discount except the white t shirt and the magazine. As you can see I made good use of that 25% off card and got the jumper, skirt and hat. On another trip to H&M I got the t shirt for only £4, and the cardigan was £10 down from £25, but used another discount voucher that I had and took it home for just £7.50. And some great clearance finds from boots: the origins skincare set for just £7.50 and the smashbox brushes for £12. I love a good bargain.

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

14.4.14

Alexander Wang x H&M

alexander wang for h&m collection
H&M has announced that its next designer collaboration will be with Alexander Wang. The announcement was made yesterday during an event at the Coachella Music Festival in Palm Springs, US. The collection will hit around 250 stores worldwide and online.

“I am honoured to be a part of H&M’s designer collaborations. The work with their team is an exciting, fun process. They are very open to push boundaries and to set a platform for creativity. This will be a great way for a wider audience to experience elements of the Alexander Wang brand and lifestyle,” Alexander Wang said.

This is the first time that an American designer teams up with H&M, and the Alexander Wang x H&M collection will feature apparel and accessories for both men and women.
The New York based fashion designer’s eponymous brand has firmly established itself by perpetually evolving and re-contextualising the urban uniform, since it was launched on the runway in 2007. Alexander Wang’s core sensibility is a reflection on contrasts, blending seamlessly between the refined and the imperfect. His collections have an unprecious outlook on fashion, and always reflect a sense of ease. 

“Alexander Wang is one of the most important voices in fashion today. He understands exactly what people want to wear and does it with an energy and passion that’s infectious. It feels incredible to be collaborating with him this year,” said Margareta van den Bosch, H&M’s creative advisor.

Source: H&M Life
Are you excited about this collaboration?

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

11.4.14

Leopard print jumper

Leopard print jumper
Leopard print jumper and collar shirt

Jumper: H&M (similar)
Cotton shirt: New Look (similar)
Jacket: H&M (similar)
Jeans: Topshop
Boots: Topshop
Bag: Topshop (similar)

I made white chocolate chip brownies today, I took some pictures and will share the recipe soon. Tomorrow we are going to Southend, one of my favourite places as it's where my now hubby took me for the first time when I came to visit him a few years ago! There used to be 3 H&Ms but they've now merged into 1 *sad face* but there's also a TK Maxx and I'm looking forward to finding some bargains ;D

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

9.4.14

Nivea Pure & Natural Regenerating Night Cream

Nivea Pure & Natural Regenerating Night Cream
Nivea Pure & Natural Regenerating Night Cream

After finishing off my Naturally Radiant night cream (review here) I was on the hunt for a new night cream, and found this one on offer so decided to try it out.

Nivea Pure & Natural Regenerating Night Cream's ingredients are of 95% natural origin, is aimed at all skin types and claims to provide intensive 24h moisture and support the skin's regenerating process during the night. 

This night cream contains bio argan oil, a natural source of vitamin E, and bio aloe vera, known for its moisturising properties, it hydrates and cares for skin. 

Nivea Pure & Natural Regenerating Night Cream contains no parabens, silicones, colourants or mineral oils, and the Argan Oil and Aloe Vera used in this product are organically grown. 

What I like about this night cream is that even though it looks a bit thick in the pot, when I apply it, it just melts into the skin and absorbs quickly. It feels very hydrating, like giving my skin a drink, which is nice haha.

It is also fairly priced so if you are looking to try a new night cream with natural ingredients and is suitable for sensitive skin I would recommend this product. 
Find Nivea Pure & Natural Regenerating Night Cream in Superdrug and Boots (RRP £5.35)

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

7.4.14

3 Tips On Researching Online Before You Buy

3 Tips On Researching Online Before You Buy

The virtual world is now your oyster – even if you want to buy oysters. Almost any item or product that you may be thinking of buying is now only ever one or two mouse clicks away. For many, an afternoon spent browsing online has taken the place of a casual few hours roaming around the nearest shopping centre, plus you get to sidestep the crowds and you don't have to listen to your partner and/or kids moaning that they're bored and they're missing the footie. Be wary though - you need to keep yourself secure whilst you're shopping online, and you need to know that any deal you're offered is as good as it seems to be. Here are three tips on how to research online before you take the purchasing plunge.


Read The Reviews
Before the internet, to know if a movie was any good you had to either listen to Barry Norman or check that Eddie Murphy wasn't in it (we'll let him off for Trading Places and Beverley Hills Cop). These days, when you log on to the internet, reviews spring up on Google as soon as you enter the movie's name into the search engine. Almost everything is reviewed on the internet now, from chewing gum to Japanese motor cycles. If you're thinking of making a purchase, there are plenty of brilliant review sites to be found over the web. One great one is InfoProductReview – I was thinking of buying my wife some earrings for her birthday so I read their review on QP Jewellers before I prised open my wallet. 

Be Serious About Being Safe 
When you're buying a product over the internet, it's just as much about knowing who you're buying it from, as it is to what you're actually buying. While you may read positive reviews about a certain retailer, some unscrupulous retailers pay people to write fake reviews. If you're thinking about making an online purchase, you're going to want to make sure you're dealing with a secure web- site. There are two main ways of doing this – in the address bar of your browser the URL of the site should begin https:// and not just http://. Also, a retail site should display a closed padlock symbol to the left of the URL – if an open padlock is displayed, the site is not secure. 

Don't Be Scammed
There's an old adage – if something looks too good to be true, it probably is. If you find a deal offering iPads for £9.99, you can be sure it's not legitimate. If, however, you find something that might be a scam but you're not sure, just type the name of the site and/or product into a search engine followed by the word 'scam'. If someone has been scammed, they're likely to want to warn the world. You can also check dedicated scam-prevention sites such as scamadviser

Making online purchases needn't be taxing – just do your research and keep yourself safe, and those bargain purchases will soon be dropping through your letterbox.

*This is a sponsored post.

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

4.4.14

Blue Cardigan

bow blouse wool cardigan cutout boots
bow blouse wool cardigan cutout boots
bow blouse wool cardigan cutout boots
bow blouse wool cardigan cutout boots
bow blouse wool cardigan cutout boots

Wool cardigan: H&M (similar)
Cotton shirt: F&F (similar)
Leather bag: Topshop (similar)
Skinny trousers: H&M (similar)
Cutout boots: H&M (similar)


I'm off work for 3 weeks from today! That gives me plenty of time to plan what to pack for our trip to Paris. (Can you tell I'm excited? haha)

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!

2.4.14

Easter Egg Inspired Nails

accessorize polish leopard moth
easter egg speckled nails blue haymarket

Last year I saw the Easter egg inspired nails everywhere, and would have loved to give them a try, however the Illamasqua polishes are a bit on the expensive side. However a couple of months ago I came across this Accessorize nail speckle polish in Leopard Moth which has a milky white base with black speckles, so I thought I would use it over Nails inc. in Haymarket, a lovely blue-green duck egg colour (review here).

I applied 2 coats of Haymarket and 2 of Leopard Moth on top, then finished off with a coat of Seche Vite and this was the result. Leopard Moth is quite long lasting though with time some of the speckle's black coating falls off and they look silver instead (not sure what that's about).

What do you think? Will you be trying this nail look?

xo

PS. Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a 30 day supply of Skinade worth £90 here!