Thursday, 17 July 2014
The first is the last book in the 'Divergent' series by Veronica Roth: Allegiant. I loved the two previous books because of the ease I could read them- I fell deeply into the story so quickly and instantly loved the two main characters, Tris and Four, because both are far from perfect but manage to find a way of surviving the challenging world they find themselves in as it steadily moves into chaos. I'm about a quarter of the way through the book but I think I already prefer it to the previous two because of the massive twist that you find out towards the beginning (no spoilers, I promise!) which I thought was such a clever addition to the story and kept the momentum going as it gave the readers more to think about. Overall I'm so excited to continue reading and see how the series ends.
My other Amazon purchase was the Luckies of London Scratch Map of the United States. I contemplated buying one for the whole world but it feels a bit more personalised getting a more condensed version because I've loved travelling through the states and if I were to create a bucket list I'd definitely have 'visit every US state' so this could be my way of keeping track with it! I'm a bit scared to start scratching it because I don't want to ruin it, but I'll probably post a picture on my instagram when I do- I'm planning on framing it in my room when I've scratched off where I've been so far.
Next up are these gorgeous sunglasses that I found in a charity shop. I hadn't had much luck in my favourite charity shop for a while until I found these for £1.50! I'd had my eye on the similar raybans for a while but definitely couldn't justify the price so I'm glad I held out for these- the rose gold/rust rims make them look really nice!
The two rings are from the Topshop sale for £2.50 each. I always make sure I buy Topshop rings in the sale because they get tarnished the first time I wear them so I don't want to pay full price! They're both midi rings and fit in well to my little collection.
Finally, if you have read my other blog posts (anyone?) you might remember that I've wanted a particular product by The Balm since the beginning of the year. I finally got the Mary-Lou Manizer for my birthday at the beginning of June and have loved wearing it! It gives such an illuminating finish and has a touch of sparkle which makes it lovely to wear going out, very happy with this product!
What are your favourites at the moment?
Saturday, 12 July 2014
I've been a bit busy recently getting back into the swing of working- I feel like I haven't had much time to myself! As promised, here is a collection of my favourite snaps from my recent holiday:
New York City
New York City
Littleton - New Hampshire
Littleton - New Hampshire
I had such an amazing time on and have brought back so many memories- America continues to be my favourite place to travel to and I plan to return to visit some more of the states as soon as possible!
Monday, 30 June 2014
The above picture just goes to show how many hotels we stayed in this trip- I won't need to buy any shampoo and conditioner for a while!
From the duty-free shop in Niagara just before we crossed the boarder back to America, I bought this oversized 'Canada' hooded sweatshirt- complete with a picture of a beaver! I knew I wanted something Canada-related before we left so it was quite lucky that I found something I liked! This cost $24.99 which was very cheap in comparison to some of the ones I'd previous looked at!
I picked up the shoes for $9.99 in the Urban Outfitters sale. There is a cute hexagonal pattern on them and even though they remind me of the plimsolls I wore in Primary school I still really like them!
Both the lace top and grey skirt are from Forever 21. I thought the cream lace top would look nice with a pencil skirt for work and the texture and design of the skirt (it dips lower at the front and back) made it a must-have for me. Both of these items were $15-$19.
The striped crop-top was from the Zara sale, $9.99. It has the square back design that I really like in crop tops at the moment and the elasticated hem makes it a lot cuter. I'll be wearing this a lot this summer!
Lastly, I wanted to buy something special that I would use a lot to commemorate going back to one of my favorite places in the world: New York City. I'd walked past The Strand bookstore a few times during my trips and I love their motto 'where books are loved' so I thought that I'd remember my time here by buying one of their signature tote bags for $14.95.
We also managed to go to a Walmart in the US where I bought a couple of things. The first was this Revlon nail polish in the shade 'Minted' as I wanted to paint my nails a new colour while I was away. I had a look in the clearance section and managed to pick this up for $2.50 so I was very happy with that! From all the early mornings I felt like my face needed a little pick-me-up so I bought a new Neutrogena product to help me. I'd never used a power cleanser before and it makes my skin really soft! I've had a look at Amazon since and there are a few different varieties of refill packs available so I'll be stocking up from there when I run out! The product itself was about $9.00 and the refill packs were $5.00 so only a small decrease on the online prices.
Here is the miscellaneous section of my purchases. The first is your standard red plastic party cup that can be seen in every American teen house party in a movie. These are made out of thick plastic rather than the throw-away ones so I'll be able to keep it for longer, and I couldn't say no when they were $1!
I also bought a body spray from Forever 21 which supposedly smells like cherry blossom. I'll agree that it smells like this after the scent has died down, but beforehand it smells a bit odd so I won't be spraying this one in public! This cost $4.50.
Another thing I wanted to buy from Canada was maple syrup as it is known for it and I found an awesome stall in a food market selling these little glass bottles for $3. I've already tried it and it tastes so sweet- just need to make some pancakes to put it on now!
In Toronto we found the large indoor shopping mall and after 3 trips to the US looking for one, I finally found a Bath & Body Works that was easy to find! I didn't go all-out as we didn't have much time to shop before the mall closed but there was a 3 for $5 offer on their hand sanitisers so I got two while my Mum got one. I chose 'Perfect Beach Day' and 'Pink Chiffon'- both smell amazing!
I felt like I had to get some sweets for my team at work so also in the Duty-free shop I found these Niagara Falls saltwater taffy sweets. I've tried one and they are slightly too salty for me, but still taste alright.
Lastly I thought I would bring back the bottle of my favourite drink while I was away; flavoured Arizona Ice Tea. The raspberry one is my favourite, although I have no idea what I'm supposed to do with this glass bottle now!
My next post will probably be a gathering of my favourite pictures I took during the holiday- I did manage to post a video on my Instagram page every day while I was away so you can see what I got up to there if you're interested!
Hope you enjoyed this post!
Tuesday, 10 June 2014
As I mentioned in my April favourites, I'd been trying not to spend much money in May so that I had a lot more freedom when going shopping on holiday this week. It's been a lot easier as it was my birthday on the first of this month, so anything I wanted to buy I just said I would be getting for my birthday instead! I picked up a few things that I think are essential for travelling (on top of the obvious) and thought I would share them with you in a may favourites/travel essential mash-up.
My favourite thing to do when on holiday is to take pictures using my Nikon D3000 which I've had for a few years now and is a trusty camera that always seems to take a good-quality photo with ease. I love travel photography so a good SLR camera is essential for me to keep the best memories of the trip.
Another essential is music. Because of the 8-hour flight and travelling in a coach for a portion of the holiday my hefty iPod Classic needed an update; although I still need to put a few more recently released albums on there as most of it has been on there since I bought it 3-4 years ago! Another thing I like to do when travelling is save up all the YouTube videos I'd normally be watching and use a converter to put them on my iPod when I'm especially bored in the airport so that I can keep myself entertained with a few vlogs!
Headphones are also important as the ones they give you on aeroplanes are always the worst quality so I always make sure I have some in my bag that work really well; I've had my eyes on some rose gold ones I saw in TK max for a while but I'll keep with my older ones for now!
A product that I've recently decided is essential to a plane trip is a neck pillow. I've never seen the point in them, probably because I never sleep on planes, but I thought I'd get one for this trip because of the amount of travelling involved. I thought I would go all-out and get a memory foam one from TK Maxx as I assume that it will be a lot more comfortable than other types and because they clip at the front they can be attached to bags so they're not difficult to carry around. I also added some socks to my essentials as my feet always get really cold on the plane, especially when I'm wearing sandals to the airport!
Clothing-wise, I've just chosen the standard items that have found themselves in my suitcase as I've been packing. For the first time ever my Mum has commented that I haven't got enough clothes for the holiday in my bag, but I think this is because everything I've chosen is interchangeable so I can wear the same items a few times during the trip with different things. The 90's crop top has made its way back into shops and I love it. My favourite design comes from Miss Selfridge and I've bought three; the black and white striped (above) and the standard black and white ones. They go brilliantly with every other item of clothing I've packed; my black baggy trousers for travelling, kimonos, printed shorts, lace shorts and my two pairs of denim levi shorts. I've also packed a few more crop tops as they're perfect for hot weather as well as my birkenstock knock-offs from Primark which I really like. Shoes that are easy to take off are a good idea when going through baggage control to save time undoing laces and putting socks back on before you go through to duty free.
I always make sure I take my favourite beauty products with me on holiday with the help of some travel bottles from poundland, and my top choice is the Neutrogena Visably Clear range to clean and exfoliate my face and leave me feeling fresh each morning. I've already mentioned my love for Garnier's Micellar Water and it always does it's job of getting rid of all my makeup whatever I'm doing. I also like to bring my own shower gel simply because it smells a lot nicer than what is given in hotels!
Is there anything I've missed that is essential for my holiday?
Thursday, 29 May 2014
As I'm well due a blog post I thought I'd go back through my recent pins and talk about what has caught my eye on Pinterest recently. (clockwise, from top left)
1. My favourite beauty blogger/YouTuber is by far Estée of Essiebutton. She has such a nice and goofy personality that I feel like we'd be best friends if we met! She also has an amazing blog and two YouTube channels; I particularly like her vlog channel, Essiebuttonvlogs. The stalker in me loves to see what my favourite bloggers are up to and her little family with boyfriend Aslan and rescue Greyhound Reggie is adorable to watch. An added bonus is that she is Canadian which makes me love her a million times more so I love watching the vlogs when she goes home so I can have a peep before I go there in a couple of weeks. All in all, if you're not following this girl- you're making a mistake!
2. Just a bit of bedroom inspo, I love the combination of grey and orange- this bedding is gorgeous! Still need to do a bit more research into Macs because I'll probably get one when my current one reaches its end but I can't decide which one to get/whether I can justify the cost!
3. Blake Lively has just been getting it right clothing-wise this year. This dress is completely on-trend with its geometric skirt and the lace and gems just make it all the more gorgeous- a perfect outfit for Cannes film festival. Another clothing highlight was her stunning Met Gala 2014 dress which just oozed sexy Hollywood glamour. Love!
4. This image is from a really cute DIY tutorial on Curbly.com (which I am now adding to my favourites bar!) which covers up the boring plastic plant pots and turns them into something more groovy. I absolutely love the copper paper used as rose gold is such a pretty and stand-out colour. When I find an abundance of time I will be attempting these to jazz up my windowsill!
5. 'My Neighbour Totoro' is probably my favourite Studio Ghibli film. When I found these beautiful posters created by Olly Moss it brought me straight back to when I was little and watched this film for the first time. Ghibli movies are like Disney films to me so it was a nice bit of nostalgia to see a beautifully designed poster for this film.
6. Another inspo picture- I think I'm going to have to buy a print of this quote sometime soon because it's less cliché than most going round tumblr and I really like it!
That concludes my second 'Note to Self' post- I'm going to do at least one of these a month and think of some other interesting posts to make in-between!
(just to add that I'll be posting a lot more when my life gets slightly more interesting- hoping to make a few pre-holiday posts as well as a big post when I'm back!)
Thursday, 8 May 2014
April has been a somewhat average month- not much seems to have happened that's worth a note! However, I have purchased/rediscovered a few items this month which are definitely worth a mention.
Although they're not part of my favourites this month, my windowsill always looks cute because I absolutely love buying little knick-knacks. I'm very surprised that my cacti have survived this long, I keep forgetting to water them but I haven't seen any sign of death yet! I found the holder in a charity shop and threw out the candles it was holding in favor of my cacti. The heart-shaped stone also on the windowsill is from a plant shop; it says 'love life' on it which is a sweet, if slightly cliché, motto.
Moving on to the items that I have been loving this month, I've started to wear my boyfriend jeans a lot more recently! I bought them at the beginning of the year from Primark and wasn't 100% sure what they would look good with, so I opted for the standard stripy top and blazer combo that always seems to work no matter what sort of jeans you're wearing. This month I've been a bit more daring and have worn them with everything, although I prefer to wear them with slightly more feminine clothes because of the masculine fit. Plain white t-shirts and sandals will be my choice this summer!
Speaking of sandals, I bought this gorgeous pair- again in Primark. I'd had my eye on some similar ones in River Island for £30, but was still deciding whether they would be worth it. I was ecstatic when I saw a very similar pair for £8, so bought them in both black and white. They're a very versatile shoe because they could be paired with jeans, shorts, skirts and dresses so they're a good purchase for the summer.
The black faux leather clutch bag is from Topshop and I managed to find it in the sale for £15. I love the pattern and it's an added bonus that it comes with straps which can be removed as to what you're doing and how you want to wear the bag. It's a good-sized clutch as it's thin but a lot can fit inside if you want it to- I always judge my clutches on whether or not I can fit any flats in when my feet hurt on a night out!
This cute navy polka-dot bikini top is something I've been searching for ever since I booked my holiday to Portugal; the cut of the bikini top and the frills make it adorable! I've been buying a few mix-and-match bikini's in the last few months so that I have more options and combinations and thought that this bikini would go perfectly- just need to feel a bit more comfortable wearing them!
My two skincare products are ones that I bought quite a while ago but thought they deserved a mention. 'Vanilla Dee-Lite' by Lush Cosmetics is one of the nicest body lotions I've ever smelt and it works so well as a hand moisturiser- I've had it for a while but hadn't wanted to use it all up because it smelt so good!
My other favourite-smelling product is Soap & Glory's 'Scrub Actually', which is made with apricot kernel oil which is what gives it a beautiful scent. As well as smelling amazing, the scrub itself leaves my face baby-smooth and (obviously) the packaging is always a favourite!
I've got my eye on the two almond-scented products from Soap & Glory next- hoping that I'll get them for my birthday!
I'm trying not to spend as much money this month so I have more money to go shopping in New York next month, so if you'll accept a boring May Favourites I'll trade you an interesting June Favourites?
Tuesday, 29 April 2014
As the excitement of booking days off at work for holiday is uncontrollable, this evening I found myself browsing through my Flickr account and having a look at some of my old holiday photos from the past couple of years.
The above image is one of my favourites from 2012; I went on a coach trip around California, Nevada and Arizona with my family and it was so much fun! Coach trips are a great way to see as much as possible and with a guide always on-hand you know you're going to get a lot out of a trip rather than getting lost or missing the best picture spots! At the point of the photo we were in the coach heading towards Bell Rock in Sedona, Arizona and everything was absolutely beautiful!
This year, I'm very lucky to be going on two holidays, the first being a coach trip but around Northeastern America and into Canada- I've wanted to go to Canada for years so I'm really looking forward to it! I'm also going to Portugal with my boyfriend, it'll be our first holiday together so I'm very excited! Below are a few of my favourite pictures from holidays over the past few years, hope you enjoy!
Wednesday, 9 April 2014
A very warm welcome to another late monthly favourites post! Yet again I haven't had any free time (or daylight) to take any photos so I've delayed it- I'd much rather have belated good quality photos (by my standard) than use my flash!
This month hasn't been too interesting shopping-wise- it seems to have gone by so quickly. However, I have picked up a few items which I think will be my favourites for a long time.
Last weekend I went to see my boyfriend at University, which means I also get the delight of going shopping where he lives as well as the pleasure of his company. The first thing I picked up was this cutesy white top from Zara; I needed something to wear to go out in later that night and thought this would be perfect to wear with my 'disco pant' style leggings. I've spilled two drinks down this top already with no sign of stain, so it's going well so far!
On the same day I bought these adorable gingham print jeans from Topshop, thinking that the two would look good together; but they both look better with plain things seeing as they're both patterned. I've worn the jeans when my team at work had a bowling competition and they are the perfect thing to wear! (unfortunately I'm still utterly rubbish at bowling). I know I'm going to get a lot of wear out of these two items.
I haven't been in a photobooth in ages, so when I went out with a couple of friends from work on Friday we thought it would be fun to have some drunken pictures in a booth. For the first two pictures we didn't know when they were being taken but the other two were more prepared for! I thought this would be a nice addition to my monthly favourites as these are the people that I see almost every day!
It wouldn't be a proper post if I didn't include something that I had bought from a Charity Shop- this mint green starfish ornament is so cute and fits in with my mostly white decor so well! For a price of 50p I definitely couldn't have left the shop without it; it has a nice spot on my windowsill along with my other bric-a-brac faves.
I've had Rimmel's 'Apocalips' lip lacquer in the shade 'Luna' for a few months now; I first bought it to match with my Topshop lipstick 'Peach Sundae' as they're a similar coral colour and so I could choose whether I wanted to wear a nude or gloss lip when I was going out. I absolutely love the colour of this- I think it matches all skin tones and is a perfect shade for Spring and Summer- so I'll be wearing it a lot in the next few months!
I've had Essie's nail polish 'blanc' on my wishlist for a while now but was looking for a cheaper alternative because in my opinion, their quality isn't too good so it seems a bit pointless spending more money on the same product. I stumbled across Boots' own brand 'Natural Collection' while browsing and saw a white nail polish for less than £2.00 and I had to get it. I've used it twice already this month and the quality is exactly the same as all of my other nail varnishes so it was such a good choice and proves that if you can find a similar colour elsewhere, there really is no point in going to the expensive brands.
My last product is Garnier's 'Summer Body' moisturizing lotion. The only self tanning products I've used have been from Poundland, so you can assume my expectations for this weren't incredibly high. I've used this product once and even though I'm not skilled in this area, it turned out surprisingly well! I'm armed with tips about exfoliating and the like for my second attempt so that my ankles aren't streaky but so far I'm really enjoying it!
Hoping to get another post up within the next couple of days so bare with- juggling work, studying and extra things like this is tricky at the moment!
Wednesday, 26 March 2014
Contemplating making this a weekly thing, because I absolutely love scrolling through Pinterest and Tumblr for inspiration for life and it would be nice to put a few favourites for each week into a simple blog post to share. I don't want to commit myself to this just in case I have a stressful week and don't get round to it, but really it only took about 10 minutes to select the pictures and make the above collage- so I should be fine!
Getting right to it, here are a few 'pins' that have caught my eye this week (clockwise, from top left):
1. Taken from Lily Melrose's blog, skater shoes have become a trend in recent months, and it's all about going back to basic with the standard Vans slip-ons. I have the checkerboard versions of these which I bought from a charity shop around a year ago (deep disinfectant before I went barefoot in those!) and I also got my hands on the black crocodile design replicas that Topshop do which I have mentioned in last month's favourites, but even though I don't need another pair, I really like Lily's leopard print ones!
2. 'Suits' is by far my favourite TV show at the moment. I started watching it in 2011 when it first started, but after season 2 ended I must have forgotten to find out when it would be on next and missed the majority of season 3. The up-side to this, however, is that last week I got to binge-watch most of season 3 and it reaffirmed my love for the show. If you don't know the basic premise of the program, a genius guy called Mike who got kicked out of college for selling a math test he memorized to his Dean's daughter and has since fallen into a bad life, finds himself working alongside Harvey Specter, the best lawyer in New York City and it's basically about the fact that it's illegal for him to be a lawyer without a degree and them evading the law as well as winning cases and the other excitement that goes along with a typical drama. The two women in the photo help to make the show amazing, in my opinion; Sarah Rafferty (Playing Donna Paulsen) is hilarious and witty and is the perfect assistant to bring Harvey to the ground when he gets too cocky, and Meghan Markle (playing Rachel Zane) is absolutely stunning, has the best work style and makes a perfect love interest for Mike. All in all, a fantastic show with a brilliant cast.
3. This picture was taken when Kourtney Kardashian invited The Coveteur to check out her newly refurbished home (according to the article she got some inspiration from Pinterest- we have so much in common, Kourt!) This post was incredible to get a further insight into a Kardashian's life than we get from the reality TV show and even though some of the designs seemed a bit excessive, any less would just be boring considering the wealth of the 'klan'. As well as the shoe collection and make-up storage, my favourite pictures were those taken in Mason and Penelope's playroom- I'm definitely going to bank the chalkboard wall idea for a later date!
4. I absolutely adore the colour scheme in this image; grey is hands-down my favourite colour and the pop of dusty pink adds a cute little pop. I've really been enjoying looking at interior design recently, and can't wait till I can buy a place of my own and paint everything white and start from scratch with decorating each room, in my mind at the moment I'd like a room to look very similar to this image.
5. This is one of my favourite pictures of Elizabeth Olsen- she is absolutely gorgeous! If I had to choose one person who was my biggest fashion inspiration (or rather, who do I search the tagged photos on tumblr the most) it has to be this girl. As well as fashion, I'm also a fan of the youngest Olsen because of her acting credibility, I really liked Martha Marcy May Marlene and I'm looking forward to seeing her in the new Avengers movie alongside Aaron Johnson and the cast from the first film.
6. Another gorgeous interior- greenery against a white background look awesome! I'm not too good at remembering to water plants (my cacti are little fighters) so if I were to recreate this look I'd use fake plants as they'd never lose their green!
Hopefully see you next week for another edition of 'Note to Self'!
Friday, 21 March 2014
The best part about my collection is that each one has a little story which makes wearing them so much more special- I actually bought this first one (above) from a charity shop before I had even been on Route 66 because I thought it was quite cool (and only cost me £1!) But then when I found out that we were going on a family trip to Arizona, California and Nevada I was pretty excited because I could wear the T-Shirt having actually been to the place on it (like the issues people have with others wearing band shirts that they don't listen to) as well as going on a kick-ass holiday. All in all, a pretty snazzy purchase and very American, which of course I love.
This was picked up from a thrift store in Berlin last year, for around 3 Euros. I absolutely loved the homemade tie-dye and iron-on on a simple Fruit of the Loom top and as soon as I got home I googled the Clovis Bullets and found out that they're a women's softball team (girl power!) It's always an added bonus if something has an interesting back story like this, my only regret from that thrift store was that I didn't also buy a really cool T-Shirt with a US Office Dwight quote; but then again it was a 'poo brown' so I doubt I would have worn it much anyway!
Fifth and final is this beautiful UCLA top. I was absolutely astounded when I saw this for a pound as it is legit from the Los Angeles University itself! I found this just after I was offered my job so I'm seeing this purchase as a way to pretend I went to a really cool University rather than staying in my hometown and getting started in my career. I'm a sucker for a grey top but to add to that the fabric is SO SOFT! Definitely the best T-Shirt I have ever bought.
I'm sure you've detected the pattern- I love anything American, it's my weakness! It's also my favourite place to go on holiday, so I'll make sure I take some pictures this June when I travel around North America and Canada to make an extra awesome blog post.
That concludes this post- how many times did I say 'T-Shirt'?