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Monday, 23 November 2015

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Thursday, 5 November 2015

Chicken & Potato Tikka Masala | Recipe

The weather is finally getting to that point where I'm starting to feel the cold (it took long enough - it certainly still doesn't feel like November in England). As the weather gets colder, I really love trying out more spicy foods to warm myself up. I'm a massive curry fan, Indian Tikka Masala or Dopiaza and Thai red and green curries. While the curry sauces you can buy ready made in jars from the supermarket are yummy, nothing compares to making your own curry from scratch - and one of my favourite curries to make from scratch is a chicken and potato Tikka Masala.

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Pumpkin & Chocolate Chip Tray Cake

Halloween is over, and I've just about recovered by now! I always go all out at Halloween as far as food and decorations go, which is an odd occurrence given my somewhat fear of going outside for Halloween (there is a strict no zombie policy on my Halloween celebrations due to my completely irrational and strange phobia of zombies). So, I found myself on the somewhat creepily misty morning on 1st November curled up in a blanket with a cup of tea watching Cinderella with some of my friends in Leeds, with patches of face paint, which refused to move with just face wipes, still on my face wondering what to do with all the pumpkins that I had carved at home to leave for Pete to enjoy the day before, and I found the perfect recipe inspiration!

Thursday, 29 October 2015

Halloween | Witches Brew Blackberry & Raspberry Cocktail

Halloween is less than a week away, so party plans have been made, costumes have been concocted and ideas are flying around friendship groups everywhere of what to be, where to celebrate, and certainly how to turn our every day homes or venues into creepy Halloween dungeons for the evening. Welcome to Halloween on Twisted Beauty...
Cocktails make Halloween for me as a fantastic way to brew together some really creative, tasty concoctions to drink with your friends and family. It's not about getting drunk, it's about enjoying something really yummy on a spooky evening filled with all things weird and wonderful. It's so easy to make a non-alcoholic version of this cocktail as well by just substituting the alcoholic elements for blackberry, cranberry and elderflower juices.

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Halloween | A Spiderific Chocolate Crisp Spiders Web Cake

Halloween is less than a week away, so party plans have been made, costumes have been concocted and ideas are flying around friendship groups everywhere of what to be, where to celebrate, and certainly how to turn our every day homes or venues into creepy Halloween dungeons for the evening. Welcome to Halloween on Twisted Beauty...
If you haven't checked out my Rice Crispie Owl recipe yet, check that out here, as this recipe is perfect for those left over rice crispie chocolate balls! Or you can just make chocolate rice crispie balls from scratch. Halloween treat are definitely my favourite thing about the holiday as well as getting to dress up in crazy outfits and for nobody to bat (pun intended) an come and make some fabulous Chocolate Crisp Spiders Web Cakes with me!

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Halloween | Dead Easy Rice Crispie Chocolate Owls

Halloween is less than a week away, so party plans have been made, costumes have been concocted and ideas are flying around friendship groups everywhere of what to be, where to celebrate, and certainly how to turn our every day homes or venues into creepy Halloween dungeons for the evening. Welcome to Halloween on Twisted Beauty...
I am a massive fan of owls - and yes I am indeed going as an owl for Halloween - I know, I know, it's not the scariest thing on the planet, but I think they can be quite creepy - you always see them in spooky stories after all! So, here goes - Halloween, after all is all about candy and chocolate!

Monday, 26 October 2015

Halloween | Horrifically Easy D.I.Y Decorations: Head In A Jar

Halloween is less than a week away, so party plans have been made, costumes have been concocted and ideas are flying around friendship groups everywhere of what to be, where to celebrate, and certainly how to turn our every day homes or venues into creepy Halloween dungeons for the evening. Welcome to Halloween on Twisted Beauty...
Decorating the house has always been one of my favourite things to do at Halloween, but this year as I'm not spending my Halloween in my own home, I'm visiting a friend, I was thinking up and searching the web for things that were really quick and easy to do in just a few hours to help my friends decorate ready for a House Party from Halloween Hell (in a good sense). I found a picture of a Head in a Jar on Google which looked really creepy, and thought it would be the perfect way to be able to decorate for the party with things I have lying around the house already. I have seen similar things on Pinterest as well with a number of variants, but mine is a simple and easy one, perfect for quickly needed decorations or something to do with kids on Halloween night.

Saturday, 24 October 2015

Getting A New Perspective With Hotter Shoes

I was very happy to be invited to my local Hotter Shoes store in Cheltenham a couple of weeks ago to discover more about this renowned brand. Hotter isn't a retailer that I have ever shopped at before, assuming it was for the older generation, so it was exciting to be able to see what this brand had to offer with fresh eyes and perspective. Arriving to the venue, I was greeted with an array of treats, and was really looking forward to learning more about where the brand came from, and getting to look more in depth at the shoes, and even bags, on display, very kindly being offered to take a pair home at the end of the event to get a real feel for what Hotter as a brand and a retailer has to offer.

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Accessorise Your Autumn | New In At Accessorize

Accessorize has always been one of the all time favourite shops to go to for beautiful, unique accessories when I fancy spending a bit more money, yet not breaking the bank. They have some fabulous new in items for Autumn, as well as some brilliant sale items. There is so many products on my wish list from Accessorize at the moment, I can only fit my ten favourites from their new in range in this post! With everything from jewellery to scarves, bags to hats - join me in my top ten Accessorize new in items.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

The Autumn of Faux | Top 5 Fur Coats

One trend I am loving for this Autumn season is Faux Fur coats and jackets. There are so many fabulous options out there on the high street and online in a style to suit everyones taste from the girly girl to the punk rocker. My stand of the use of fur in clothing, and indeed leather is a whole different matter, but I do love the fur look, and faux fur is definitely something that I love. All the jackets and coats I've chosen are faux fur, and all the 'leather' is polyurethane. If you're looking for a fabulous, glamorous faux fur coat for the Autumn season, here are my top five.

Saturday, 3 October 2015

That Scary Place Between Education & Career

While many people don't take the trip to university and go into work at the tender age of 18 or even younger, I certainly couldn't imagine being in full time work as soon as I had left Sixth Form - cue the comments about my immaturity. I can't even begin to image, having been at university for quite a while more than the majority of people about getting a proper full time job and thinking about paying rent and bills in any more sense than splitting them six ways in a crummy, cheap university house share. I have, however, come to the conclusion that it's not full time work that I should be afraid of, it's that gap between completing your university modules, or even the last few weeks that you're in high school if you're finishing you educational journey there, and finding a job that will let you afford to live comfortably for the rest of your life - and more importantly, find something that you're both good at and, importantly, enjoy.

Monday, 28 September 2015

McKenzie's of Lichfield | Restaurant Review

In the small, quaint city of Lichfield in Staffordshire lies a restaurant that was most certainly the only pick for a meal for my Dad's 61st birthday. Not only is it situated in one of the most beautiful cities in England, and in an architecturally interesting and charming restaurants, but it also shares our family name (not that we have any connection to the restaurant other than sheer coincidence of having the same name). My family and I used to go with my Godparents to the restaurant when it was under a different ownership, so it was also interesting to see how it had changed. With stunning food and drinks, McKenzie's is certainly the place to go for a special occasion or a treat in Staffordshire, especially on a Saturday when the market is bustling outside. 

Sunday, 27 September 2015

Emmy Awards 2015 | Best & Worst Dressed Part Two

The 2015 Emmy Awards took place in Los Angeles a few days ago, celebrating in style the best of television, and the fashion certainly didn't disappoint with those who shone and those who should have probably stayed home. Take a look into the celebrities that I think were the stars of the red carpet and rocked the fashion forward evening, or check out Part One where I reveal my picks for those who fell at the first fashion hurdle on the evening.

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Emmy Awards 2015 | Best & Worst Dressed Part One

The 2015 Emmy Awards took place in Los Angeles a few days ago, celebrating in style the best of television, and the fashion certainly didn't disappoint with those who shone and those who should have probably stayed home. I know it's supposed to be about the acting, producing, writing and talent, but I can't help focusing on the stunning (and not so stunning) dresses, suits and everything in between on the red carpet. Join me as I reveal who I think really flopped when it came to fashion - and don't forget to check out part two where I reveal my pick for those who stole the show with their amazing fashion here.

Monday, 21 September 2015

22 Dresses To Get Ready For Autumn

Autumn, while I love the colour change in the leaves and the crisp mornings, does make me a little sad that I have to put away a lot of my summery dresses and replace my wardrobe with leggings, jeans and cardigans! So, I went on the hunt for some fabulous dresses that are still in keeping with the Summer, but are beautiful for the Autumn months as well. It's time to revamp my wardrobe.

Sunday, 20 September 2015

10 Things I Dislike | The Love/Hate Tag

Now that you have discovered ten things that I absolutely love and couldn't live without (here), why not find out some things that I don't like that much? Continuing on with The Love\Tag Tag which I was nominated for by the stunning Phoebe of Phoebe Giggles, I go through ten things that certainly don't make the grade when it comes to things I like, be it personality traits, foods, objects or situations! As with life, there are things we like and things we don't, so if there is something on my 'dislike' list that you in fact like, good on you for being a better person than I for being able to find something good in the things I can't. Don't forget to check out my nominations at the end of this post as well and see if you are nominated and read everyone else's tags.

Saturday, 19 September 2015

10 Things I Love | The Love/Hate Tag

The amazing Phoebe from Phoebe Giggles nominated me a couple of weeks ago to do the Love/Hate Tag, and I have finally managed to get around to it after a week off ill! Tags are one of the things that I first started doing when I started blogging to get some information about me out there and really put myself out there on the page for all to see and connect with on some level, so I'm always really excited when someone nominates me for a tag post, especially one which is so brutally honest - I love sharing the things that I not only think are amazing, but also sharing the things which I don't particularly like, as that's part of life, and blogs which only share the good and pretend that the bad doesn't exist are a complete no-no in my books!

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

5 Ways To Wear Bold Prints | Straight From The High Street

The Autumn months are upon us, but I'm certainly not ready yet to let the bold prints of Summer fade away. Clinging desperately on to the Summer weather and bringing those bold patterns and colours into an Autumnal theme, I have put together five looks from five different high street stores featuring the essential bold print items everyone needs in the Autumn wardrobe: the top, the trousers, the skirt, the coat and the dress. I love Autumn, the browns, reds, oranges, purples, and some of the items available out there scream Autumn with a hint of Summer fun at the moment. Bold prints are something that not everyone feels comfortable wearing - something I feel with myself some of the time - but these looks are perfect for either dressing down with some darker colours or brightening up with some jewellery and perfect for both the outgoing fashionistas and the more demure fashion connoisseurs amongst us.

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Become Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious with Julie Andrews as 'Mary Poppins' | Hollywood Golden Age Fashion Creation #7

Mary Poppins is one of those films as a child I always wished to be true, that a magical nanny would swoop down, take me away to a land where penguins danced, sang and wore tuxedoes and that pictures and carousel horses came to life. I love the etherial, in charge, sophisticated look that Julie Andrews has playing this role, with the contrast of the navy and black tones of the formal feeling uniform against the bright orange scarf, showing off Mary Poppins classy yet fun side. I wanted to recreate the look of this iconic outfit based upon a more formal, event-worthy outfit with a twist on the makeup look.

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Top 8 ASOS Colourful Plimsolls For Those End Of Summer Blues

On those lazy late summer days, the last thing I want to be doing while sitting in a beer garden or shopping with my friends is wearing heels, and when the weather turn on the chilly side at the end of August, what better way to bring some Summer fun back into your footwear than with some fabulous plimsolls. Whilst Toms will always be the leaders in such shoes in my opinion, there are so many other fantastic plimsolls out there to discover, and one shop that has it completely on point, in my opinion, is ASOS. Both in their own brand plimsolls and in their guest brands, there is so much variety and a multitude of gorgeous and interesting designs for everyone from a lover of girly, floral prints to the more eccentric colourful, wild prints. Follow me into my Top 8 ASOS Plimsolls (plus a few extras)!

Friday, 21 August 2015

I Dare To Be | Fashion Is Art In Sizes 12 To 30

Fashion is art...and art is always pushing the boundaries. I discovered I Dare To Be recently, and instantly fell in love with their intricate designs of fashion, catering for everyone from a size 12 to a size 30. It's incredibly rare to find a fashion forward front being a plus size girl that offers high end clothing in my size, so I Dare To Be was a revitalising experience. Whilst the garments can't be described at budget, the quality and the uniqueness of their designs is anything but budget. I've been hooked on their website, going through every item of clothing, discovering so many items that I am absolutely in love with, and have managed to put together three styled looks from their collections.

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Back To School in Style | Smiggle Wish List

I know, I know, I'm too old to be going to high school and be excited by shopping trolly shaped desk tidy's, but even at twenty-five years old, I still L.O.V.E. stationery - and especially back to school when all the intricate and outlandish new products come into stores. Ah, I do miss the good old days when I was at university and worked part time at Staples - stationery heaven in an aluminium-steel box! I have set my sights to a different shop this year, however, for the most incredible Back To School supplies I have seen on the high street - and things that, even though I don't need them for school, would come in very useful for blogging, planning and just plain owning to look cool on my desk! This year I discovered a brand new shop I have never been in before - an American stationery shop that is slowly taking the UK by storm with their unique products. Here is my Smiggle Back To School wish list.

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Enjoy An 'Easter Parade' with Judy Garland | Hollywood Golden Age Fashion Creation #6

Easter Parade and Judy Garland go so well together with excitement, drama and colourfulness. I love Judy Garland's character in Easter Parade and her upper-class dress with a fun, festival feel twist. For the sixth instalment in my Hollywood Golden Age Fashion Creation series, I wanted to recreate Judy Garland's yellow suit-dress look into a modern classy look that's perfect for any Summer or Autumn event as well as something that could also be worn to work or to a formal event.

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Scrumptious Cakes From Baker Days

This is a sponsored post.

Cakes are something that no special occasion would be without - birthdays, anniversaries, graduations - anything! But, sometimes, we can't afford to go all out on a lavish cake, but would like something a little more personal and exciting than the classic caterpillar shaped cake from the supermarket (you all know which one I'm talking about). The fabulous people at Baker Days were kind enough to solve this dilemma for me by sending me one of their letter box chocolate cakes with a fantastic personalised design to taste test and review for them.

Monday, 17 August 2015

Release You Inner 'Calamity Jane' with Doris Day | Hollywood Golden Age Fashion Creation #5

If you ever need cheering up with a good song and dance romance flick, then Calamity Jane is the film for you, starring the stunning Doris Day amongst others, in what I think was her greatest performance. I love the transition Doris Day goes through in this film as Calamity Jane into a beautiful woman, elegant and stunning. The fashion is also something I love in this film, much like the sequence from The Sound of Music where Julie Andrews creates the children's clothes out of curtains, Calamity Jane is transformed into a completely different person as she learns how to become a lady to woo the man of her dreams - granted, something which isn't considered the most important thing by modern day standards, but something that I like to loose myself in when I'm stressed about life, work and bills amongst other things, to think of a fantasy movie world where the most I would have to think about was how ironed my dress was and how lady like the boys thought I was - ah the wonderful world of Hollywood! In an attempt to live this fantasy lifestyle, I have recreated Doris Day's stunning white and black outfit into a modern woman's ensemble. 

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Go Bronde | L'Oréal Review & Makeup Look

I like to think of myself as a connoisseur of hair colour - nothing wacky or by any means professional, but having had my hair an array of colours from bleached blonde to dark brown, mahogany to black, dirty blonde to dip-dyed and even a few blue streaks here and there when I was fourteen, I like to think I have tried enough brands and types of home hair colours to be able to tell the difference between the good and the bad - and sometimes the ugly! I have used L'Oréal Préférence home hair colour before, using one of their Ombre kits which worked really well and was fairly easy to use, but this time, going into Autumn in a few weeks, I wanted something more subtle, but more exciting than the one-tone hair I have currently - so I decided to try one of their Glam Highlights colours.

Saturday, 15 August 2015

The LUSH Polychromatic Era | Haul

I know I have said before that I rarely go to Lush, and that when I do I stock up with all the wonderful things they have to offer - however, walking past the window display in the Lush store here in Cheltenham, I couldn't resist popping in and spending my last few pennies on trialling some of their new products before my spending spree once payday has come around. As usual, Lush hasn't disappointed in their array of new products for August, bringing a psychedelic feel to the end of Summer, keeping that Summer vibe alive - and I picked out two very differently scented products to try before I go all out at the end of the month.

Friday, 14 August 2015

Follow A 'West Side Story' with Natalie Wood | Hollywood Golden Age Fashion Creation #4

Drawn straight from the classic tragedy backgrounds of Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet, West Side Story has always been my go to movie when I want to watch a hear-wrenching romantic flick. I love the excitable music contrasting with the tragic story line and the beautiful dresses that the cast wear, showing the innocence of the Spanish immigrants in the movie in contrast to the bad reputation they have in the minds of the American's. Natalie Wood's white dress is one of these outfits, much like Romeo & Juliet, as she is noticed at a dance, a vision of an angel in white - and I really wanted to create this look in this series.

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Plus Size Inspiration | Fashion Recreation

Over the years, I have started reading and discovering for myself more and more blogs and often I read them in stints, going on and off the kinds of things I feel like reading about. However, there are those few blogs that I have been reading for a while now that I know, no matter what time of year I visit, I will be welcomed with posts that will make me smile and that I will be interesting reads - Sprinkle of Glitter was the first blog that did this to me, but one of my all time favourite blogs, and one that boosted my confidence to start my own blog being Plus Size was 'She Might Be Loved' by the fabulous Georgina Grogan. Through her inspirational and motivational lifestyle posts to her gorgeous fashion ensembles and makeup looks, Georgina has inspired me in many ways - and always looks fab doing it - so why not recreate a fashion look that - to me anyway- screams this wonderful blogger.

Sunday, 9 August 2015

Learn 'How To Marry A Millionaire' with Marilyn Monroe | Hollywood Golden Age Fashion Creation #3

One of my all time favourite actresses of the Hollywood Golden Age was Marilyn Monroe, with stunning blue eyes and blonde hair, a unique singing voice and fantastic fashion - seductive yet elegant. One of my favourite looks for Marilyn Monroe was this outfit of hers in 'How To Marry A Millionaire', and I have recreated this look for the modern world as a perfect ensemble for a sophisticated night out, or even for an event, mixing tan, white and moss green to make a look that will translate perfectly into the cooler weather and Autumn months coming up here in the UK.

Thursday, 6 August 2015

Stepping into 'High Society' with Grace Kelly | Hollywood Golden Age Fashion Creation #2

One of the most beautiful women of the Golden Age of Hollywood was Grace Kelly, and whilst the films that she was in weren't always my favourites, I can't deny that she always looked stunning and elegant in everything she did - especially as a crowned Princess of Monaco after her marriage to Prince Rainier III! I attempted to create a modern twist on one of my most favourite Grace Kelly costumes - her golden khaki dress from 'High Society'

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Singin' In The Rain with Debbie Reynolds | Hollywood Golden Age Fashion Creation #1

Anyone who knows me will know that one of my favourite things is the old movies of the Hollywood Golden Age of the late 40's, the 50's and the early 60's, particularly musicals - 'Singin' in the Rain', 'Calamity Jane', 'My Fair Lady', 'Guys and Dolls' - give me Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds any day of the week! So, inspired by having just started working helping a group of incredible people from the older generation who had the incredible fortune to live through the Golden Age of Hollywood Musicals and get to listen to all my favourite songs from this era every day, I thought it was the perfect time to launch a series that I have been planning for a while now, putting a modern twist onto some of the costumes from my favourite films. 

Sunday, 2 August 2015

LUSH | Summer Haul Part Three | Bath Bombs

Bath Bombs! My favourite things to buy from Lush, ever! I absolutely love their range of bath bombs and melts in all sorts of shapes, sizes and smells. Don't forget to check out Part 1 (Soaps and Massage Bars) and Part 2 (Jellies, Scrubs and Cleansers) as well to see all the things I got from Lush most recently...

Friday, 31 July 2015

LUSH | Summer Haul Part Two | Cleansers, Scrubs and Jellies

One of the things I can't get enough of from Lush is their scrubs, shower jellies, cleansers and face masks - and definitely go over haul when buying them. Continuing on from my Part 1 Lush Summer Haul...delve with me into the land of my favourite recent Lush pots!

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

LUSH | Summer Haul Part One | Soaps and Massage Bars

A few weeks back, it came to that time of the quarter when I take my trip to LUSH and end up, as usual, buying half the shop! I got some good old trusted classics, some new favourites for a second time, and some new exciting things to try. I love Lush products, and haven't actually found a product that I don't like yet - so please don't be confused as to why I only go to a place that I love so much four or five times a year - it's mainly because I; a) know if I go in there I'm going to spend a fortune more than I have on all the exciting things and b) because I find the stuff so pretty and gorgeous smelling that I feel bad using them and don't want to not have them any more - it's a dilemma! So, as with every Lush trip I take, I ended up getting way more than I needed and spending more than I should have done - although, snaps for me for keeping it under £20 - believe me, when it comes to Lush, that's an achievement for me!

Monday, 27 July 2015

New Jacob's Cracker Crisps | First Impression


I signed up to a marketing company called BzzAgent a while back, who are one of the leading marketing companies, sending out products to a number of people per product to let people test them out and hopefully, if they like them, share this with their friends and spread the word about these new products, and the first one I have to try is the new Cracker Crisps by Jacob's.

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Boston Tea Party, Cheltenham | Café Review

Tucked away in the far end of Cheltenham town centre lies a modern industrial coffee shop and café called Boston Tea Party, bringing copper and metallics back into fashion along side, as it's name suggests, British classics such as Eggs Benedict and beautiful cakes with American, Boston style with huge pastrami sandwiches and milkshakes. Discovering this little gem on my first day in Cheltenham was definitely a good thing...

Saturday, 25 July 2015

Gloucester Quays Food & Drink Festival 2015

Having moved down from the cold climates of Leeds in West Yorkshire to the sweltering heat of the South, I wanted to try as many things as possible in my first few weeks living in a county that seemed to have completely different mannerisms and characteristics that the one I had just moved from - and what better was to see what fantastic local produce and vibe Gloucestershire has then to attend the annual Food & Drink Festival at Gloucester Quays, which took place this year on the 17th - 19th July.

Thursday, 23 July 2015

BareMinerals Beauty Must Haves Kit | Review

I have never really used bareMinerals products before, and have been meaning to try some out for a long time, and after sifting through a magnitude of random items when moving house and going through my old bedroom at my parents house, I found a bareMinerals bareBeauty kit that my Mum got me for Christmas just gone (and I'm not even sure you can get this specific kit any more!) - it seemed like the perfect time to see what bareMinerals had to offer and what the products were like for my complexion and skin type. I think these little bareMinerals kits are fantastic if you need a quick and easy look for when you're travelling or if you're really pushed for space as they are so compact and you literally get everything you need in one little box!

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

USA --> UK; International Box Swap with Conk's Canister

Constance of Conk's Canister blog is one of the first bloggers I started speaking to when I first joined Twitter and the fabulous blogging world back in February and is one of the people who has always been there for a chat or to help with tips and advice when needed, so it was obvious when deciding to do an international box swap that she would be my first choice to swap with! We set a budget and got shopping for lots of lovely beauty and lifestyle things to send to one another, including a few special requests (Sephora makeup and Jolly Ranchers for me, and Tanya Burr lipgloss for Constance)...

I'm Back!

So, if you have clicked on my blog in the past six weeks or so (thank you very much if you have popped by!), you may have noticed I haven't posted in a while. The past six weeks have been, to say the least, incredibly hectic including finishing my university degree, graduating from said degree, relocating my whole life, picking up and moving almost 200 miles from Leeds to Cheltenham and job hunting to be able to afford living in a much more expensive town than I have been accustomed to living in Yorkshire! 

I have some exciting posts planned for the next couple of weeks as I have been exploring a new location, including a New Flat Tour, a number of restaurant reviews and an exciting post about the Gloucester Quays Food Festival as well as some non-location based posts such as an International Box Swap and my first sponsored post! So, that is what has been happening! This is just a short post, I know - but at least now I'm caught up with everything and finally have internet (which took fifteen days to get in my new flat!) and am back on a roll with loads of post ideas etc! Come back and visit soon - the activity will soon be up and running!

Thursday, 4 June 2015

#LeedsFoodMonth | Brewdog Pieminister Pies

Leeds Food Month is an incredible month long event showcasing the best food trends at the moment throughout the city, with special markets, events and some restaurants and bars showcasing special festival additions to their menus. By far, one of my favourite bars in Leeds is Brewdog, so when I heard they were taking part in the food festival, I couldn't resist but to pop on down and try one of their pies from showcasing kitchen, Pieminister.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Lipcote Lipstick Sealer | Review

I discovered Lipcote when I was given it as a Christmas present, and completely forgot that I had it until I was searching for a bright lipstick the other day! I decided to give it a go, as smudging my lipstick or wiping if off by accident is something I'm very talented at. The Lipcote coat claims to create a clear layer of sealant on top of your lipstick to stop smudging and lipstick transference for a number of hours! 

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Chaophraya Leeds Cocktail Menu Launch

Thai food is one of my favourite cuisines, and the thought of trying some cocktails which take their inspiration from such a culture, especially from the beautiful Chaophraya restaurant in Leeds City Centre was too good an offer to miss. I was invited by the lovely Lynsey to attend their launch of their new cocktail menu in their Palm Sugar Bar along with other bloggers and veterans of the restaurant to an evening filled with beautiful surroundings, amazing live music, scrumptious food and even more delicious cocktails.


Monday, 1 June 2015

The Press Tent | Manchester Escalator Event

I went along to my first event of this kind, meeting a number of brands and bloggers at The Escalator conference space in Manchester at an incredible event run by The Press Tent. There were so many fabulous brands there that I'd either never heard of, or had seen around Twitter and read their blogs and was excited to meet face to face! This event had everything a bloggers heart could desire from fashion to accessories and music to cocktails!

Sunday, 31 May 2015

An Evening With ... Kirsty Ralph

Kirsty of Kirsty Ralph Blog is the second beautiful blogger to take part in my 'An Evening With...' series! Kirsty has been a great friend of mine for a number of years and one of the reasons I feel so comfortable blogging and having jumped in at the deep end as much as I can with events and meet-ups. Shes a fabulous food, music and lifestyle blogger amongst other things, so don't miss out on checking out her blog here.

You can find all the other interviews by clicking on the 'An Evening With...Take Part' tab at the top of this page, as well as downloading the questions for yourself to take part - the more the merrier, whether you're a big or small blog, an old or new blog, or blog about anything and everything!

Sunshine & Sands Giveaway | Winner Announcement

A few weeks ago, I started a Rafflecopter Giveaway to celebrate my blogs 3 month anniversary. That giveaway ended at midnight (Saturday 30th June) and a winner has been generated at random by Rafflecopter to win these fabulous prizes...

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Top Gift Days For Dads | PART 2

Welcome to Part 2 of Top Gift Days for Dads - if you missed Part 1, you can find it here!
Father's Day gifts, and to be fair, gifts for similar days have always been difficult for my to buy - mainly because my parents live in a cottage, and therefore have no space to fit anything with my Mum's antique auction hauding habits! So, I have, in recent years, turned to getting gift days and experience days as gifts instead, and have grown to love them as incredibly brilliant gifts, as they are all things you wouldn't normally experience on a day to day basis, and will definitely be remembered for a long time! Bring on the award for 'Best Daughter'! Prices shown are the current sale price!

I have been to my all time go-to site for gifts days, trying to find things that my Dad would like to do, and decided it would be good to put together a list of my favourites, including some that my family has experienced ourselves to help those of you out there either struggling for ideas for this year, or even looking for something a little different to buying some cologne and whiskey! I have picked out my Top Gift Days in low-end, mid-range and high-end prices, so there is something to suit every pocket...

Monday, 25 May 2015

Top Gift Days For Dads | PART 1

Father's Day gifts, and to be fair, gifts for similar days have always been difficult for my to buy - mainly because my parents live in a cottage, and therefore have no space to fit anything with my Mum's antique auction hauding habits! So, I have, in recent years, turned to getting gift days and experience days as gifts instead, and have grown to love them as incredibly brilliant gifts, as they are all things you wouldn't normally experience on a day to day basis, and will definitely be remembered for a long time! Bring on the award for 'Best Daughter'! Prices shown are the current sale price!

I have been to my all time go-to site for gifts days, trying to find things that my Dad would like to do, and decided it would be good to put together a list of my favourites, including some that my family has experienced ourselves to help those of you out there either struggling for ideas for this year, or even looking for something a little different to buying some cologne and whiskey! I have picked out my Top Gift Days in low-end, mid-range and high-end prices, so there is something to suit every pocket...

Sunday, 24 May 2015

Confessions of a Blog-a-holic | Tag

It has literally been the busiest day of my life today, but I didn't want to not do a post - so I thought a tag would be a good thing to do. A while back I found a tag called 'Confessions of a Blogger' on Chloe's Way - an incredible blog that I've loved for some time now, especially her philanthropy and fashion posts! So, here we go...

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Review | Avon Peeling & Brittleness Nail Solver

Although it's not a new product, I have recently turned to using the Avon Nail Experts Peeling & Brittleness Solver nail treatment after having acrylics on my nails, with Jessica nail polish. I used to bite my nails a lot - and I mean my nails rarely grew a while millimetre before I bit them again when I was younger. That and a lack of calcium in my diet until I was towards the end of my teens left my nails in a brittle state to the point that I can bend them downwards with ease. This, obviously means they are incredibly weak and I have issues with peeling and easy breakages, especially after having false nails on! I was hoping that the Avon Nail Experts formula could help! 

My nails three weeks ago, when I first started using this product were broken, chipped and in need of some serious TLC! Not one of my nails made it past having a one millimetre distal edge before some kind of chip or peeling happening which weakened the nails more than they were already and caused them to break or peel off to an alarmingly short length. Whilst this product has a slightly strange, a strong smell, that made me feel like it was just all the more better for what I needed it to do. I put the product on my nails three weeks ago, when my nails were in a state of breaking from weakness before they had even has the chance to have more than a millimetre long distal edge! I made sure that all my nail varnish and other crap was off my nails before applying the nail expert formula to all my nails.

My Goals For 2015

I'm only a few months late for New Year's Resolutions! But, I have decided, as my blog is getting to the point where I feel like I've learnt the basics and have some scheduling and planning in motion, it's the best time to look to the future and set myself some goals of what I want to achieve over the next year. It's going to be quite a short post, but I'll update it over time as and when my goals are met, and add more goals to the mix if my original ones are looking like they are easier to achieve than I am currently anticipating (as of May 2015).

Friday, 22 May 2015

#Copper | Polyvore Creation


MANGO white blazer
£64 -


White shoes
£23 -

Toscanella leather handbag
£330 -

Copper bracelet
£55 -

Wildfox sunglasses
£120 -

Cheek bronzer
£19 -

Revlon nude lipstick
£4.50 -

Lord Berry liquid eyeliner

Surya brown rug
£105 -

Too Much Picnic Food & Dustbin Boyfriends | #EastMidsMeetUp

In my short time blogging, I have come to love so many new things; Twitter chats, polyvore, satire and most of all, meeting other bloggers, the people who understand what this crazy blogging world is all about and how much time and effort and passion goes in to every word. I have been lucky enough to be thrust into this world along side on of my good friends, Kirsty Ralph, and to be invited to a number of groups and events. Facebook has been an incredible tool for finding likeminded and near by bloggers, and I was lucky enough to meet six incredible bloggers in the East Midlands Bloggers Society for a day of chatting, picnicking and art!
[top picture sourced from Samantha Partridge]

I have been to Nottingham a number of times over my lifetime, mainly for bowling competitions, so I was looking forward to seeing some more of the city, especially Nottingham Castle, which I've wanted to go and see for some time after hearing quite a bit about its beautiful garden areas, views of Nottingham and its art gallery inside. 

We started the day meeting at the train station, and I have to admit I was incredibly nervous. My blog has greatly boosted my confidence, but meeting new people is something that I still find very nerve racking! I was amazed at how quickly we all gelled though just from walking from the train station to the castle, and I felt so comfortable with all these amazing girls in such a short time like we had been friends for ages! Having blogging in common certainly helped and we soon found a beautiful place in the castle gardens next to a picturesque gazebo to have our picnic, and chatted about our posts, jobs and beyond! 

We certainly weren't short on food, with each of us bringing something different - and certainly all going slightly over board, having enough to feed fifteen rather than seven people! And we were soon laughing and making jokes, including ending up referring to my boyfriend, Pete as a LITERAL dustbin. Needless to say, a few days later, this photo needed to be taken..

We also had a look around the art gallery, something which I haven't done in a good few years and sorely regret not taking more time to do. It brought back so many happy memories of going on school trips to see amazing art work - plus a bit of culture never hurt anyone did it? The art gallery was beautiful and was filled with different types of art, classic and modern to see and even interact with. Our childish sides definitely came out when we found the interactive iPads, jigsaws and cut out figures to pose with! The walk around the art gallery reminded me of a quote my art teacher told our small group of six who were taking art A-Level;

"The purpose of art is washing the dust of our daily lives off our souls"
- Pablo Picasso 
After a lovely walk around the castle and the art gallery we retired to a beautiful pub on the cobbled streets outside the castle entrance and enjoyed a 'Bev' as Emmie put was so nice to be able to sit and chat to other bloggers. I've been quite nervous about telling my friends and family about my blog, and in fact didn't really tell my parents about it in detail except mentioning it once to my dad until after this meet up, despite showcasing some of my dads art work on here beforehand! I feel like this meet up gave me a chance to really get the discussions out I wanted to about blogging beyond the hectic Twitter chats and gave me a confidence boost to just go for it and tell my family. Friends on the other hand still don't really know about it other than a few passing notes on Facebook, so it's an overwhelming feeling to have so many bloggers I now feel I can call friends and talk to about my blog after just one meet up!

All the girls I met are wonderful and fantastic offers and people - be sure to check out all their blogs and twitters (below) and let me know your first time blogger meet experiences in the comments! 
The Fabulous Bloggers

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Emma Stone Chic | Polyvore Creation

Untitled #25

H M crop top

Ted Baker blue jeans

Floral clutch

Yves Saint Laurent black sunglasses
£205 -

Summertime Homeware Favourites | Urban Outfitters

Urban Outfitters has always been a favourite place of mine to find unique decorative and entertainment pieces on the high street for really reasonable prices. Whilst I've never been able to fit my rather plump bum into their stunning clothing, I like to surround myself with their products in a different way. As some of you may know, I'm moving house in just over a months time, and I have gone a bit mad looking for items that I would love to have in my new home - one that I will actually be allowed to decorate! So, come and take a look at some of the things on my Urban Outfitters homeware wish list...

[all images are courtesy and copyright of]

In the sale...

There are so many amazing sale items in Urban Outfitters at the moment, and you may be able to see a slight owl related theme going on. I am obsessed with owl furnishing at the moment, and have been for about the last two years, so I found this adorable owl cushion and these money banks, which I was quite sad to see they had either sold out of, or have never made the 'See No Evil' owl money bank! Whilst I already have two similar owl shapes cushion, a girl can never have too many owls right? I also fell in love with this ceramic flask, with the word Poison on - it seems a bit more unique than the equally beautiful 'Vodka' and 'Whiskey' flasks, and I love the bump-detailed texture of it. I also really love the hanging basket, especially in this turquoise colour, which I could totally see in a bathroom or office space to give it some life back.

I've also gone a bit photo frame mad, so I couldn't resist this unique photo frame, which looks like a polaroid in some ways, which I am absolutely in love with at the moment. Being my final few weeks in Leeds, possibly, I'm trying to capture as many polaroid moments as possible, and this seems like a really cute, small way to feature and display them - though I would need to buy more than a few! Finally, from the sale items, I chose these beautiful orchid fairy lights. You don't get too many, but draped over a mirror or as a feature corner, these are really stunning and give a homely feel to any room.

Not in the sale...

There are also an array of stunning non-sale and new items that I found, weirdly enough, all going along a pastel, peach and green toned feel - completely undeliberate on my part of choosing! The first thing I was drawn to was the stunning lamp shades, as I have never seen anything like this before and think they would make a beautiful central piece in a living room or a bedroom as a massive talking point. I love the combination of colours and the vintage feel. I also love the vintage feel of the Old Kentucky Mug in copper, a colour that I am in love with at the moment. Despite being somewhat pricey for a mug, it's really heavy and such good quality, and would make a fab display piece, or as a small vase in a kitchen. My copper grasping fingers were also drawn to the Urban Grow Terrarium, which I think are great ideas to have around the household, especially if you are a lover of plants but don't have the time to garden, or even don't have a garden like me at the moment. I love plants, but post of the ones I have are cacti or orchids as they are easy indoor plants to look after and can be really unique - and what better way to display them as well as giving them everything they need than in a variety of Terrarium shapes! I was also drawn to the bronzed copper effect of this majestic stag jewellery stand, which would look beautiful as a centre piece on any dresser and as a fabulous gift idea.

I was drawn to the pink colour running through the remainder of my item choices, firstly with the geometric patterning of the pink and grey in the cushion, which I think is really lovely. I've definitely got grey, pink and orange as my main living room colour options at the moment. I thought that these two candles went really well with this colour theme too, and they smell absolutely incredible, with not only unique painted designs, but smells as well including scents of earl grey tea and cucumber that you don't usually see in candles. Finally I feel in love with this owl lamp, available in a few different colours it's the cutest thing I think I have ever seen and I will definitely be getting a few of these for my bedroom and living room in my new house!

I hope you like my selections for my favourite current Urban Outfitters homeware pieces. Let me know in the comments below what you're favourite colour schemes and trends are at the moment!

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

#LetsGetFoodieChallenge Week Two

The amazing Amanda Bootes has created a fun blogger challenge series called the Lets Get Foodie Challenge. Each challenger is given one to two weeks to complete the set challenge. This week is all about National Vegetarian Week (18th - 24th May 2015), and we were challenged by Amanda to produce a dish with something green in it!
For this weeks entry, I moved away from the classics and went more rustic, putting a spin on a Jamie Oliver recipe that I've made countless times before! Usually when I make this dish, I also make a homemade pesto (also a Jamie recipe) as well, so why not make it this time! it spin on Jamie Oliver's Grilled Halloumi, Spinach & Toasted Seed Salad with Homemade Parmesan Pesto!
for the pesto
1/2 Clove Garlic
Sea Salt
Ground Black Pepper
3 Handfuls Fresh Basil
1 Handful Pine Nuts
1 Handful Parmesan Cheese
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 Lemon
for the salad

1 Handful Sunflower Seeds
2 Small Carrots
1 Bulb Fennel
4 Handfuls Baby Spinach
100g Fresh Podded Peas
250g Halloumi
1 Lemon
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Sea Salt
Ground Black Pepper

Recipe | Pesto

1 | Pound the garlic with a little pinch of salt, pepper and the basil leaves in a pestle and mortar. Add the pine nuts to the mixture and pound again. Add half the Parmesan and stir gently and add the olive oil - you need just enough to blend the pesto together, not make it oily. Add the rest of the cheese and squeeze in a small squeeze of lemon juice at the end - and you're all done! Tasty, and incredibly simple!

Recipe | Salad

1 | Toast the seeds in a dry pan over a high heat, moving them around the pan from time to time so they don't burn. This will only take a couple of minutes. Put to one side. Using a speed peeler, cut the carrots and the fennel bulb into this ribbons. If you're using peas in a pod, pod them.

2 | Slightly wilt your spinach for about a minute, and warm up your vegetables for a couple of minutes in a pan with a minute amount of oil. Cut your halloumi into centimetre thick pieces and place on a hot griddle or frying pan with a minute amount of oil for about one minute on each side. The cheese will soften slightly as it cooks, so turn carefully.

3 | Put your vegetables on a large plate and dress with a good squeeze of lemon, and a pinch of salt and pepper before tossing together. Add the halloumi chunks on top, followed by a sprinkling of the seeds - you can mix it all together if you like.

I hope you enjoyed this slightly different way of doing a Jamie Oliver classic for my second #LetsGetFoodieChallenge entry for National Vegetarian Week 2015! Go and check out the challenge and get more info from Amanda's blog here.

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Think Spring | Polyvore Creation

Think spring

N 21 tank dress
£660 -

Salvatore Ferragamo gold sandals
£465 -

Shopping bag
£59 -

Dorothy Perkins bracelet
£7.02 -

Aamaya by priyanka gold ring

Tech accessory
£26 -

Flower crown
£5.50 -

Lancôme matte eyeshadow
£33 -

Marc Jacobs nude lipstick
£15 -

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