Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Autumn Haul | October 2013

Hey guys,

Over the last few weeks I've been fortunate enough to treat myself to a few bargains, and I thought you guys might like to see them.

I like to tip you guys off with awesome finds that I think you'll love as much as I do, so that you have the opportunity to track them down before they're gone for good. Like for instance, today's little haul of awesomeness...

I saw these lovely penguin and snowflake print PJ bottoms in Sainsburys and knew they had to come home with me, because I fell in love with the adorable penguins. I'm trying to rebuild my PJ collection from scratch, too. I often live in my pyjamas for days on end when the pain's extra bad and I don't have the strength to do anything and need to remain as comfortable as possible; so my lack of nightwear was getting ridiculous.  The penguin print is adorable, and so bold and cheerful. I feel very wintry in them, and they'd be perfect to wake up in on Christmas morning.

I think I paid £8 for the bottoms and £5 for the cute frilled vest, which are brilliant prices for such lovely, good quality pyjamas. I'm loving TU at Sainsburys' (very affordable) designs this season.

Last week, River Island launched their end of season sale, and I popped on over for a browse (online) for potential Christmas presents. That soon went out the window! There were some incredibly beautiful bags on sale for next to nothing, so I bought this stunning little green satchel for myself for just £10. It was originally £20! The sides and straps are mock croc, and it's about the size of a hardback novel. It's not too small and not too big, and has enough room for all the essentials. Oh, and how beautiful is that colour? 

The bag is sold out online now, but it also comes in cobalt, pink, light pink, yellow, orange, gold, and leopard print, just not on sale. I'm quite taken with the cobalt blue, myself! Are you listening, Santa?

I also took the opportunity to order this green messenger bag. I ordered it as a potential Christmas present for my Mum, but on arrival I concluded it's probably a bit young for her tastes, so decided to keep it for myself instead. Oh, damn! How ever am I going to cope...?

The bag is so roomy, and will be as useful as Mary Poppins' carpet bag for travelling, trips out, hospital appointments, and shopping. It would be great for schooling and work, too. I love the bright, grass-green colour, and the zip detailing gives it a bit of an edge. It was just £12 on sale, down from £25, and again it's now sold out online, but it's available in other colours full price. Tan, brown, beigered, cobalt, and black. If it's the green you've set your heart on, I'd definitely recommend checking in your local River Island because you might get lucky and find one!

My favourite purchase of late has to be this beautiful animal print scarf from Next, and I just had to show you it as I know a fair few of you love animal patterns as much as I do!

It's a luxurious chocolate in colour with woodland creatures all over it. Deer, rabbits, squirrels, owls, mice, and raccoons, to be specific! I love the sketched appearance of these adorable critters, and the attention to detail is lovely. The fabric is so soft, warm, and thick, and surprisingly inexpensive at just £10. Needless to say, when I first saw it it stopped me in my tracks and I couldn't leave without it. Sadly it doesn't appear to be available online (yet?), but it's definitely worth looking in store for it as I think it's a new line and it's so incredibly gorgeous.

And of course, I bought myself the gorgeous tartan pinafore dress by Alice & You which I shared in an outfit post last week, which you can see here if you want to. I adore this dress and know I'll be wearing it all winter long. I think many of you would love this dress, too, but unfortunately it's now sold out completely online.

I also treated myself to some hair accessories from Accessorize, while my sister was looking for jewellery for her choir's event. I've never seen houndstooth hair clips before, so I had to have them. They were £4 for a set of 10 and look really study.

I've also been curious about those ribbon hair ties for ages now; are they really better than ordinary hair bobbles? The ties are in beautiful jewel tones, not that you can tell from the above photo which was taken at night in artificial light, but they're bright, bold and pretty. They were £3.90 for a set of 5.

There was also a pair of black bat stud earrings I bought from Sainsburys, but I seem to have lost them somewhere between leaving the car park and getting home. Oops.

What have you been buying lately?

Monday, 28 October 2013

Uniquely You: Following Dreams

Last week I was contacted by Modcloth, the retro and vintage inspired fashion retailer, who invited me to participate in their Uniquely You challenge. Being a big fan of Modcloth and their beautiful designs, I was very flattered by the invitation so of course, I said yes! 

I was challenged to create an outfit on Polyvore around a particular item of clothing from their private label collection, using up to seven other pieces from their extensive collections.

The item of clothing I had to dress was the "Following Dreams" sweater by Bea and Dot, a striped and polka dot number. Polka dots! Prints! Two staple ingredients of my personal style! It was fair to say I was in my element and had so much fun putting this outfit together.

Following Dreams

I stuck to a simple, classic colour scheme with navy, white, and red pieces, but decided to have some fun and show a little personality by mixing patterns, and adding in some quirky accessories. That's basically my day to day style and this outfit in a nut shell! I love colour, pattern-clashing, and unusual accessories!

The sweater alone is lovely and would look classic with a great pair of jeans, but worn with the beautiful Resounding Thrill polka dot skirt, the unusual Afternoon Tea charm necklace (very Alice in Wonderland!), and the rest of these lovely accessories, it's transformed in to a head-turning outfit! Something to set you apart from the crowd, without being too out there. It may not be to everyone's taste, but this is how I'd wear the Following Dreams sweater. And did I mention it caters to sizes from an XS up to a 4X? Fantastic!

So that was my Uniquely You entry. The winning entry at the end of the week gets the honour of being displayed on Modcloth's Polyvore page! Wish me luck!


Sunday, 27 October 2013

Sunday Favourites #53

Happy Sunday guys!

I'll start this week's Serendipity Sunday post by apologising for the silence on this blog these last few days. It's been one of those weeks.  

I've been feeling a bit under the weather while also suffering from a case of writer's block. The ideas have been there waiting to be interpreted, but I've not had the energy, the inspiration, or the will to write. I've mostly been curled up like a burrito reading The Hunger Games and Catching Fire, and scrolling aimlessly through things online in between. But, I'm back today with this week's favourites, and hopefully it'll help me get back in to the swing of things. In the mean time, I hope you enjoy these lovely images and links...

I'm in love with this lady's tattoos, but especially all the little sea life creatures on her right arm. It's definitely given me some more ideas for future tattoos. (I'll have no bare skin left by the time I'm finished)!

Instead of carving a jack-o-lantern, why not decorate it with coloured drawing pins instead?

I LOVE this idea of making pom-poms out of tulle and turning them in to a garland. I'm very tempted to make some! Wouldn't they look pretty over a dressing table? I also think they'd make cute Christmas decorations if made from festive colours!

This outfit worn by Kate of Scathingly Brilliant is the loveliest ensemble I've seen in a while. I love the colours together, the textures, the ribbon belt... it's perfect. 

This reading corner looks so cosy. I especially like the lanterns and garlands hanging together from the ceiling.

This look makes me think of a particularly beautiful sun set.

Rainbow cake! One of these days I want to try to make one.

Pretty purple manicure.

Chickens in sweaters!!

This purple make up look is stunning.

I wish my hair looked like this.

Halloween is almost here!

This scene is just so human!

This may be the cutest thing ever... I will call him my squishy and he will be mine and he shall be my squishy.

This incredible photo, along with a few others at the source, shows waves in excess of one hundred feet dwarfing Seaham Lighthouse in County Durham (England). I've seen rough waves before in nearby Sunderland (where my Mum and her side of the family are from) and in Cornwall, but never anything quite like this.

The sheer size of this waterfall is incredible.

I find art journals like this one so interesting to peek at.

Pretty gift-wrap.

Love this living room- so much pattern and colour!

Real style is never right or wrong. It's a matter of being yourself on purpose.

These Peppermint Eggnog Milkshake Shots sound delicious.

A woman was caught trying to steal food in desperation to feed her hungry family, but instead of being arrested, the police woman bought her $100 dollars of groceries, knowing that arresting her wouldn't solve the problem. When the news got out, a further $700 dollars in donations was given to her, and a local business owner invited her in for an interview and gave her a job! Miami, you're doing it right.

Is it a cat? Is it a table? Who knows.

These Nutella Cheesecake Cupcakes sound delicious. I may need to make these for Christmas.

Yet another amazing Alice sleeve.

This should be observed by everybody around the world.

This week, it's mostly by numbers!

~ 5 Reasons Everyone Should Work in a Service Job in Their Twenties. I completely agree with this post. I worked in retail for 9 years (until I injured my back as a result two years ago), and I learnt so much from the experience, about myself and others. It takes a lot of strength to serve other people, and if you can conquer that, you can conquer anything in life!

~ 6 Unbelievable Personal Injury Claims. I don't know which claim is the most ridiculous!

19 American States send fat kids home with 'fat letters' informing their parents or guardians that the child is *shock horror*, FAT- to show their apparent "concern" for the child's "ill health" and well being. Now Massachusetts are to back down in recognition that it's an absolutely terrible idea...

20 Things You Never Knew About The Lion King. I never knew it was loosely based on Hamlet!

50 Things You Will Never Be Able to Forget... another post that'll give you nineties kids nostalgia!


Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Wednesday Wish List

Hey guys,

I've got my favourite picks of the week to share with you today, in another Wednesday Wish List!

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10 // 11 // 12 // 13 // 14 // 15 // 16 // 17 // 18 // 19 // 20 // 21 // 22

I never really know what to say when I put these wish list posts together and I feel like I just say the same recycled words every week. 'This is amazing', 'this is lovely', 'this is so cute', 'this is so pretty', 'the colour is stunning!', 'that print is amazing!'... I feel like a broken record sometimes. I'm sure you guys know what I mean!

So, as my brain doesn't want to function right now, here are lots of lovely, pretty, cute, stunning, amazing, and / or awesome things in an array of colours and patterns I have my eye on at the moment which I think and hope you'll like, too. I wish Santa would come early and bring me one of each! Well, I have been extra good this year... *cough*... yeah, I'm fooling no one!


Monday, 21 October 2013

The 5000 Question Survey: Questions 101-125

Hi guys,

I've got the next instalment of The 5000 Question Survey for you today. I've now reached questions 101-125. If you want to catch up on the first 100 questions answered, you can catch up on them here, and if you want to give the challenge a go yourself, then you'll find all 5000 questions via this link.

101. What does happiness/joy feel like physically? 

Happiness feels like warmth, weightlessness, and a comforting hug.

102. List five people you love starting with the one you love the absolute most. 

That would be my best friend, Angela, and I guess my family- my two sisters, and my Mum and Dad (even if they do all drive me nuts). I won't put them in a specific order to save getting murdered in my sleep.

103. How many movies have you gone to see this month? 

Zero. I've only made it to the cinema once this year, because I can't sit for very long due to the pain from my back injuries. I'm hoping to make it to the second Hunger Games film when it comes out next month, though. I'm willing to put myself through the pain and discomfort for it. I can't wait to see it!

104. If you could have 3 wishes...but none of them could be for yourself, what would you wish for? 

1. I'd wish for an end to size discrimination, so that all sizes would be treated equally in society and the world of fashion.

2. I'd wish for all pain, illness, and suffering to be removed from the world for good.

3. And I'd wish for financial security and wealth for my family and friends for life.

105. In what ways do you relax and de-stress when you are really tense? 

I've always found that listening to music helps me to de-stress and calms me down when something's annoyed or upset me. There's a song out there for every mood. I also find writing helps, whether I'm emptying my thoughts and feelings on to a piece of paper, a blog post, a social media platform, or whatever. I don't even have to share what I've written, just releasing the thoughts from my head lifts the weight away. 

106. How much money would it take to get you to drive to school naked in the springtime and get out of the car? 

There isn't enough money in the world to make me want to do that!

107. Have you ever killed an animal?

No, I could never intentionally kill an animal. The thought makes me sick to my stomach.

Oh, wait, does hoovering up spiders count? And feeding live mealworms to reptiles?

108. Have you ever lost someone close to you?

I've lost friends as life has progressed and people have moved away or moved on, (a part of life living in an RAF community), but I'm fortunate to have only experienced two deaths in my family up to this point; my Grandad and my Nan. Touch wood that's how it'll stay for a long time.

109. What do you think of cloning? 

I think it's amazing that we're capable of creating a living creature this way, but I'm not so sure it's right to do so. We're not meant to live forever- or we already would, and when our time is up, our time is up. The idea of playing God and cloning a person or a pet to, say, bring them back as a replacement is creepy, and I don't think it's right to clone for medicine, research, or farming, either. (Supposing these reasons were all being carried out).

110. Do you read or watch TV more often? 

I love to read, and prefer it to watching TV, but I probably watch TV more. It's often on for background noise, and as a means of keeping myself occupied.

111. With all this talk of terrorism going around are you willing to sacrifice rights and freedoms for increased safety? 

It all depends on what kind of rights and freedoms we're talking about, but yes, I'd be willing to make a few sacrifices to ensure my safety. I can live with only taking little bottles of shampoo on a plane, and travelling without scissors in my hand luggage. However, I would never let the fear of terrorism stop me from living my life the way I want to. The moment we fear then is the moment they win.

112. What is the punishment you would come up with for Osama Bin Laden if you caught him alive? 

Well, since he's already been found and killed, there isn't much point in this question, but I think he deserved to suffer in the worst way possible for what he was a part of.

113. Have you ever named an individual part of your body? 


114. Have you ever been on the radio or on TV? 

I had a request of mine read out on the radio by Ronan Keating a couple of years ago... does that count? He said my full name, so I think it should!

115. Have you ever won a lottery, or sweepstakes? 

I buy scratch cards every now and then and have had a pound here, and a twenty quid note there... nothing spectacular. I never remember to play the actual Lotto.

116. Have you ever won a contest or competition? 

I've won a few over the last couple of years, and before that I never won anything in my life. I won a meet and greet with Boyzone and a pair of gig tickets to see them play live with my best friend in 2009, which was the best experience ever! I then won a signed Ronan Keating calendar later that year. This year I've won two blog giveaways- (lots of goodies, and a New Look voucher), and a beautiful Zatchels satchel.

117. Do you like to watch The Joy of Painting show with Bob Ross (check out this link if you don't know who he is.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bob_Ross_(painter)? 

Never watched it.

118. Do you know what your grandparents and your great grand parents did for a living? 

I don't know an awful lot about this, actually. My paternal grandfather was in the RAF; I don't know if he had another profession before retirement. He's ninety-four, and probably retired before I was even born. My maternal grandfather was a ship builder, but I don't know if he ever did any other kind of work. He died of lung cancer aged sixty-seven* (*I think) when I was just eleven, so I never had the chance to ask him questions like this. I'm not sure if my Nan (paternal grandmother) ever worked, or what my Nana (maternal grandmother) did. I only remember her working in a chip shop when I was little and she was nearing retirement. I don't know anything about my great grandparents at all. I need to start asking questions!

119. Is there anything really interesting in your family history? 

My maternal grandad was once interviewed twice by Police during the Yorkshire Ripper investigation. I'm told that the police went door to door interviewing men in Sunderland, and something about his Mackem accent sparked them to talk to him twice. 

120. Is there anyone you trust completely? 

My best friend. I can tell her anything.

121. Have you ever lost someone without having the chance to say goodbye?

My Grandad. He died of lung cancer in a hospice when I was just eleven, and my parents decided to (understandably) protect my sisters and I from seeing him so unwell in his last few days. I  saw him for the last time at Christmas about two weeks before he passed, though, and we drove the two hundred and fifty miles back again a week later to be with my Nana for his final few days. I was too scared to go to his funeral, but I still miss him terribly.

122. How do you feel about women in politics? 

Just the same as I feel about men in politics. I've never been all that interested in politics as it often just bores me to tears, but women have as much right to be in politics as men do. Gender shouldn't be an issue. It doesn't sway my opinions on a politician- their policies and actions do!

123. Would you rather have an indoor Jacuzzi or an outdoor pool? 

I would love to have an outdoor pool, even if I do live in not-so-sunny England. I've always longed to have my own pool. It would be heavenly in the summer.

124. What things are you interested in that you study or read about on your own? 

Well, there's fashion and beauty, which I read about on a daily basis through blogs, blogging, magazines, and the like. I'm naturally curious when it comes to tragedy, war, and disaster, and am especially inquisitive about the Titanic and the Holocaust. I find survivor's testimonies heart breakingly moving, yet also interesting. I love reading for pleasure, especially horror, thrillers, and post-apocalyptic novels, and I like learning about animals and arts and crafts.

125. Would you consider yourself to be intelligent? 

I'm not sure I'm intelligent, but I'm definitely not stupid. Well, most of the time!


Sunday, 20 October 2013

Sunday Favourites #52

Hey guys,

It's time for another post of my favourite images of the week, so sit back, relax and enjoy! Oh, and if you're reading this whilst watching the Hollyoaks omnibus, make sure you have the tissues to hand. Just trust me on that one.

I love a good green and purple combo.

This is such a sweet design for a tattoo.

What a lovely way to display photos! I want to do this.

These cakes look so pretty.

Cath Kidston nails.

I love all the colour and pattern in this room.

This dress is a beauty!

Who wouldn't want to ride a carousel with a view of the Eiffel Tower?

This cockatoo scarf is fantastic.

This jewel toned braided look is gorgeous.

This made me cry.

Cats in buckets. They mean business. I wouldn't mess with them, if I were you... just a feeling I have...

There really aren't enough words to respond to these nineteen complaints... I mean, seriously? ''The beach was too sandy.'' "We... want to be re-reimbursed(?) for the fact I became pregnant." "Noone told us there would be fish in the water." I think the one about the time difference in flights home from Jamaica to America and England is the best one! People are idiots.

This photo really makes me smile. Cutest, loveliest photo ever? I think so!

Some really interesting art journal pages.

Love this idea for printing clouds!

Why do we not live on Neptune?

Why not carve a watermelon for Halloween?

This ballet dancer, Amelie Segarra, performed on point ballet (on the tips of the toes) on kitchen knives to show the dark intensity, dedication, and violence involved in ballet. Not only that, but she did so on top of a grand piano! Now that's some serious dancing! Ouch.

Can I live here, please?

This terrifying looking thing is called a Pacific Lamprey and the adults are parasites which latch on to fish with those gruesome mouths... I shall never be getting in to the water again.

Fancy a blind date with a book?

Love this rainbow eye make up look.

Isn't this beautiful?

These lipstick colours are amazing.

Cute Halloween and Autumnal macaroons.

A tutorial for a gorgeous Autumnal coloured pouffe. Who wants to make me one?

Just don't do it. Promise?

Sour watermelon gummy bears.

Strawberry Lemonade Vodka. Sounds delicious!

Why do we do this in the first place?

Can this be my bedroom, please?


Want to make giant lolly pops? Do I even need to ask that question? 

I can't believe I don't notice any of the extra thes when I read this without thinking about it.

~ This home tour over on A Beautiful Mess is absolutely beautiful.

~ This GIF set of Stephen Fry interviewing Simon Lokodo, Uganda's Minister for 'Ethics' and Integrity, about rape and homosexuality are so shocking and disgusting. How can anybody justify heterosexual rape,  because it is the 'right way' (IE. heterosexual) to have sex??

~ These GIFS of an orphaned baby otter swimming are adorable.

~ Vicky of The Curved Opinion spoke up about fat shaming earlier in the week, after she received some awful verbal abuse during the vileness that was 'fat shaming week.' 

~ Leah of Just Me, Leah also wrote about fat shaming and body confidence in light of that disgusting fat shaming hashtag.

~ What's in a Name? Curvy Vs Plus-Size Vs Full Figured... Which do you prefer to be labelled as? Or would you rather not be labelled at all?

~ I love this Ouija board clutch bag!

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