Saturday, 5 December 2015

Advent Calendar: Days 1-5

About a month ago I purchased this adorable 'The Sweetest Thing' advent calendar from Matalan after it caught my eye during a VM nightshift, which includes 24 days worth of mini nail varnishes. I normally go for chocolate filled calendars but last year I just wasn't craving it like I normally would and I'd be away from home for a few days at a time and I lost the sparkle of excitement I'd have in past years so I decided this year I'd get something that I would actually enjoy and get to use throughout the year too. Also it has a cute unicorn illustration which I love too.
Overall I've really liked the colours that have come out of this calendar. I'm not a snob when it comes to brands of nail varnish, as long as it does the job I have no preference over what brand it is. However there is some colours I tend to repurchase and some colours that I have never tried, like the Taupe/Beige coloured nail varnish from Day #4 and this calendar has gave me the option to have that and give it a try which I think is a really good idea.
The older I get and the more I'm exposed to more festive things and ideas, the more I've realised how popular and beneficial it is having a calendar that has something a bit more useful with it. Maybe I'm an old soul or maybe my taste buds have changed and don't give me the craving for advent calendar chocolate (send help!) but I think these type of calendars that include items that are around more these days are a great gift for those who are into beauty or wanting to try something new. I think you can get some really great items within them to try out so I think they are worth having far much more and are appreciated more.
Although I've seen some incredible calendars advertised out there, I really enjoyed my cheaper option from Matalan at £12 (with Staff Discount) and I can't wait to try out all the colours in the new year.
Thanks for reading & Let me know which colour is your favourite :)

Monday, 2 November 2015

Autumn/Winter Essentials

Hello everyone!
When I think of autumn, I am always drawn to the thought of the colourful leaves and the sun shining low through the trees and the beautiful scenery that comes with it. It is always this time of year when it reminds me of one of my favourite places in the UK which is a lovely little country park in Brampton. I used to go there as a kid with my family during the autumn half term and spend the day walking around the tarn, wading in the water with our wellies on and collecting conkers. As I've got older I have visited a few times myself (see here) and hope that it can be a place to take my future family and make our own memories. Unfortunately when I recently visited we could not get many photographs like I did the last time as the weather was very dull and miserable. Although I was able to capture this army of ducks whilst they were being fed. There is something really pretty about the feathers on ducks. One of them came so up close to me I was almost certain it was going to peck my fingers off! Luckily I survived ;) I'm hoping to plan my visit next year in a more organised manner as I would love to get snap happy when the sun is out as the tarn looks breath-taking when the sun is setting over it. I would also love to venture through during the summer as that is something I have never done and maybe even be brave enough to canoe across the tarn which would be amazing.

My go to autumn essentials are pretty much summed up very nicely in this post. Visiting Brampton, seeing the colourful leaves and beautiful scenery, my super soft tartan scarf, chelsea boots and my gorgeous brand new coat. It is so comfortable and warm whilst looking smart at the same time, which is what I have longed for in autumn coat for a very long time. I saved up a few giftcards from my birthday and rather than just buy for the sake of it, waited it out until I found something I truly loved and when I saw this coat it was love at first sight. It has been a perfect addition to my wardrobe.

I have also had some exciting news. I have a brand new job! I am so happy and excited to work for a design company in a role that suits me perfectly and I have been really enjoying it so far. I'm keeping my fingers crossed!
Coat: Topshop, Scarf: River Island, Tights: Asda, Wellies: Reynold's, Bag: Mulberry, Boots: Matalan

Saturday, 3 October 2015

My Favourite Yoga Poses & Their Benefits

Hello everyone!
When it comes to keeping fit, I have an on-off relationship with it. I used to thoroughly enjoy P.E. and I'd always partake in it and playing sports growing up. I went to dance classes and swimming lessons after school too. I led a very active childhood/early teens and for the past few years it has took me a while to find new ways to keep active/new hobby to take up whether it was during my time at University or now before I head off to work. I have eventually found a way to keep fit that I can adapt to my everyday life. I had always wanted to try yoga but took the route of pilates for a few years but one day earlier in the year I was shopping in Urban Outfitters with my Mam and I came across this little book and decided to purchase it and start to give yoga a real go. The book is really useful as it not only educates you on the variety of poses, with diagrams and a list of their benefits but it goes into detail about the history of yoga and the different types of yoga which I have found really interesting and it is also a small enough size to carry around with you if you wanted to. As I'm not the most flexible person in the world nor the strongest, I decided to go through the book and pick out the poses that I felt would benefit me personally and focus on those.
Mountain Pose: Increases body awareness.
Mountain Pose with arms up: Stretches the front and sides of the body.
Lunge: Strengthens the legs.
Plank Pose: Strengthens the arms, wrists and abdonimals.
Four-Limbed Staff Pose: Strengthens the abdomen, arms and wrists.
Upward-Facing Dog: Opens the front body and chest. Strengthens the back.
Downward-Facing Fog: Stretches the hamstrings, ankles, shoulders and calves. Reduces stiffness in the shoulders.
Warrior Pose I: Strengthens the legs and ankles. Stretches the front of the hips, adbomen, hip flexors and psoas. Strengthens the upper back.
Warrior Pose II: Strengthens the legs, ankles, upper back and arms. Stretches the inner thighs.
Extended Triangle Pose: Strengthens and tones the legs. Stretches the legs, hips, shoulders and spine.
Tree Pose: Improves balance. Strengthens the ankles and legs. Stretches the outer hips and inner thigh.
Dancer's Pose: Strengthens the legs, back and abdominal muscles. Improves balance. Stretches the front of the hip and thigh, and the chest and shoulders.
Side Plank Pose: Strengthens the side body, arm, legs and abdominal muscles. Improves concentration and balance.
Staff Pose: Encourages correct alignment of the spine and strengthens the supporting back muscles.
Bound Angle Pose: Stretches the inner thighs and outer hips.
Head-To-Knee Pose: Stretches the hamstrings and back muscles. Also stretches the inner thigh and lower back.
Cobra Pose: Strengthens the arms, chest and whole back body. Prepares the body for deeper backbends by warming up the spine.
Vest top & Leggings: New Look*
When I work out, I love nothing more than wearing proper workout gear, as it personally makes me feel more motivated. I was recently sent these lovely pieces from New Look (thanks Jodie!) as part of their brand new sportswear range they have brought out. The clothes feel extremely comfortable. The leggings I was especially surprised with as normally sportswear leggings tend to feel really thick and a bit stiff, but these aztec ones felt so soft, easy to move around in and basically feel like you were wearing normal leggings. The top has become a new favourite of mine, the quote 'Motivation gets you started, Attitude keeps you going' was something I really liked about this and found myself drawn to, again it is ridiculously comfortable and very roomy which is ideal for me, it is loose and hangs much lower but as it was a hot day when I took these photographs I decided to tie it to one side, also the arm holes are quite big so I teamed them with my Victoria's Secret sports bra. I think it'd look nice to brighten up the dark clothing by wearing a more colourful sports bra underneath so it peaks out, so I may keep that in mind for next time.
If you are going to work out from home my advice would be to definitely change it up once in a while where you work out as a change of scenery can stop it feeling repetitive, if you have a garden than that would be ideal to enjoy the fresh air whilst you are doing it.
Thanks for reading!

*This post is in collaboration with New Look, all views expressed in this post are my own.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015


Happy birthday to me! :D
Hello lovelies! This year I have had a much more low key birthday compared to the past two years (see here & here). The wednesday before was spent having a meal at Mamma Italia with my parents as it has been a long time since the 3 of us have done something together, which was a lovely evening, followed by another meal with my family and my boyfriend at Luciano's where I wore my gorgeous new playsuit from Miss Selfridge teamed with these Matalan chunky heels, I love the chain detail on the straps and also where I got the classic sombrero & the waiters singing to me, haha!
I spent the morning of my birthday with my boyfriend blasting Will.I.Am's "It's my birthday"(classic!) and being greeted by this absolutely beautiful bouquet of flowers off him as well as a few gifts off both him and family members and birthday cards too. He always gets the most gorgeous bouquets!
One of my favourite cards was this Little Mermaid one that my brother had sent over from Australia with a really sweet message inside. He knows me so well!
This pillow was a present off my parents. The reason my Mam went for this is because of the quote on it, which is a phrase we've always said to each other since I was a little girl. I love how it's still a thing between us :)
The next present was a complete surprise and I absolutely adore it! Another on-going present idea is normally something mermaid themed-usually Disney, but I really love this more grown up mermaid ornament. I think the intricate detail on the hair and tail is amazing.
When I had come home the day after my birthday, my Mam had displayed this banner on my window. I love how thoughtful she is :)
Another sweet surprise was this gorgeous bouquet that my brother in Australia had arranged to be delivered to me. I don't think I have ever received flowers off him, so I was really moved by this.
The day before my birthday, a.k.a my 'birthday eve', my Mam had brought me back a slice of red velvet cake from Caffe Nero, which is my favourite! So sweet of her :D
My birthday was, like I've said, rather low key. I spent the day with my boyfriend finally trying out The Botanist in Newcastle after thoroughly enjoying the one at Leeds, I found the Newcastle one just as good and enjoyed sipping a few Cherry and Sage Sling cocktails and then went to see Inside Out at the cinema, at last! I thought the film was better than I had predicted and I liked the concept behind it. I thought the short film at the beginning about the two volcanoes was adorable!
I also have been out for a meal with friends from work which had been pleasant, was really nice to spend time away from work and be able to talk about other topics and get to know the more newer colleagues too. We went to a lovely restaurant called Fiumes and we were even given our own room away from the rest of the restaurant too, I felt like a VIP ;) Of course I had pasta (shock!) and that went down an absolute treat with me! I decided to wear my brand new dress (shown at top) by Ginger Fizz from Asos. I'd never heard of the brand before and I've been pleasantly surprised by stumbling upon it as they have some gorgeous floral patterned and maturer looking dresses. I had contemplated the dress for a while and I'm so pleased I bought it now though, I think the fit of it is very flattering and I love the open back style too. The material is rather thin so I definitely think it is more of a dress that you'd wear out in the summer when it's a bit warmer on an evening and will definitely be a future holiday outfit too to wear on a night when you're walking around after a meal. I can imagine myself sitting in a bar, next to a promenade over looking the beach with my man by my side and with a cocktail in hand, bliss!

Thursday, 9 July 2015


Hello lovelies!
I was recently contacted by Caseapp, who asked if I'd like to try out their website to create my own custom Iphone case. I was instantly drawn to it as I find it very difficult finding cases that I like for my Iphone 5C, so gave it a go. The website was very easy to navigate, I clicked on 'create your case' and then chose the phone model that it was for and began to create a collage on the template provided. There was a good choice of template styles which looked effective but personally preferred all squares close together as I think they really stand out. Using the photos from my 21st birthday in Florida, I created my case. I thought it would be a cute keepsake for myself as I loved that holiday and the photos that went with it. Caseapp are offering the chance to create your own using the discount code:VIOLETCASE20 for 20% off your order. It is valid for 2 and a half weeks, so enjoy! :D

*This post is in collaboration with Caseapp, all views expressed in this post are my own.

Monday, 8 June 2015

Tsum Tsum Collection #1

Hello everyone and welcome back to my blog :)
I was introduced to this current Disney craze by my good friend Amelia, who shares my love for all things Disney. She had seen/bought some herself when she had been to Disneyland Paris and mentioned they were going to be heading to the UK which I was really excited about. Once they hit the stores, they obviously have been a huge hit so far and I can only imagine they will continue to be. I remember seeing them whilst I was out shopping with her and darted for Clintons to begin my collection. They also sell them in Disney stores too and every month they release a new set of TsumTsums to collect. The word 'Tsum Tsum' (pronounced sum-sum) is Japanese for 'Stack Stack' which is what they are used for, to collect and stack them on top of each other. I honestly think they are the most adorable plush toys I've ever seen, so soft too. They really trigger the excitement of my inner child haha! I hope that maybe one day when I'm older I can pass them down to my future children and be able to watch the sheer joy on their little faces, like I know I would have as a child. Anyway I thought I would show my collection so far for you all.

Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Mickey Mouse, 
Bambi, Marie, Donald Duck, Pluto,
Olaf, Eeyore, Lady, Daisy Duck & Dumbo.
 Let me know if you love/have TsumTsums too and which ones you have :)

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, 6 June 2015

Scarlett of Soho Review

Hello lovelies!
I was recently contacted by Scarlett of Soho, who are a brand who specialise in eyewear and they asked if I wanted to try out their Free Home Try On service. Being a glasses wearer, I naturally said yes as I was intrigued by the concept. You first begin clicking on 'style finder' and select your gender, then you have to identify what your face shape is and finally skin tone. I went for oval and fair. It then auto selects a variety of glasses that they recommend fit you. You can also just chose your own to try for yourself, you don't necessarily have to go for the recommended ones. I found this whole process very quick to do and the website very easy to navigate as well.

Saturday, 23 May 2015

The Sims 4

Hello lovelies!
It has been such a long time since I did a gaming post/review, I'm talking like 2 years which is ridiculous! So today I am changing that. I've always loved the Sims, aside from Sims 3 which never appealed to me as I felt the graphics were too 'over done' and the sims all looked the same. I was a big lover of the original and I'm still a massive Sims 2 fan, still currently playing it. Anyway you get the idea. When I heard they were releasing a new Sims, I was in limbo about purchasing as, like I said, I was not drawn to the Sims 3 however I did my research and looked at Youtube videos and read review after review. Eventually it came down to that feeling of excitement you get when you really look forward to something, so I caved after a month of it's release and got it.

First of all I got the game guide incase there was new things I needed to learn about it, I do this with a lot of games however it wasn't really all that necessary as the game kind of explains itself. When I first began playing I encountered problems with it and I have the odd glitch with certain bits however it does run much better. The Create-A-Sim mode has STUNNING graphics, I'm still in complete awe at how beautiful they are, the new features are so cool too, for example you can choose what kind of walk they have, how low or high there voice sounds, different personality traits (I LOL'd at 'hates children') and you can click on the body parts to change them. The other cool feature is the moods they have, it's interesting to see them change whenever they do something throughout the game and it injects a bit more life into the boring Sim portrait icon. The rest of the gameplay in the beginning I found pretty average and I still find the home objects pretty average however overtime and learning new things as I played I find it far better and they even have in-game achievements and secret locations to discover and items to unlock via different careers and items to collect which keeps the game interesting. Also now there is a few game packs and add ons which helps too. I find the careers are harder to move up in and in the beginning when it came out there was no toddler stage I was devastated however child sims have different skills to build which I find is a pain as you can't really get a head start building them like you could on the Sims 2 so to me it isn't really that big of a loss. All in all though I thoroughly enjoy the game and I'm addicted the way I was with The Sims 2 which is a BIG deal haha. I would definitely recommend it :)

The reason for my Sims ramblings is because I've been debating a lot lately about whether to inject more gaming into my Blog which was something I had planned from the early stages of this blog being made and overtime I just got sidetracked by other topics and interests that I sort of it left it behind but for the past month I've been a lot more inspired to do so, so from now on I will be including more gaming posts as it is something I'm passionate about writing and is a hobby I enjoy so why not share it?! So keep your eyes peeled and hope you enjoy the future content :)

Before I go I thought I'd share some of my favourite Sims 4 links for you all. I get a lot of my sims information from Carl's Sims 4 Guide. Also for Youtube videos I highly recommend LifeSimmer, Vixella, Kawaii for general gameplay, Sofee for her Animal Crossing challenge videos and DanandPhilGAMES who I find SO hilarious with their sim, Dil! I literally watch their Sims 4 playlist on repeat. All of which are really interesting and fun to watch. Let me know if you watch any or if there's any you recommend and I'll check them out :)

Thanks for reading! :)

Friday, 24 April 2015

72 Hours In London

Hello everyone & thanks for stopping by!
For a long time I have been interested in Visual Merchandising and unfortunately where I work doesn't really have many opportunities to move up the career ladder and into that field so rather than whinge on about it, I decided to take matters into my own hands. Before Christmas I had looked into it a lot more and came across the Fashion Retail Academy in London and was very intrigued. I didn't even know there was such a thing as an academy for things like visual merchandising! How completely wrong I was! For ages I'd constantly kept going on the website and contemplating booking the 'Introduction to Visual Merchandising' course which had always stood out to me and eventually after the new year I decided to just bite the bullet and booked myself in.

For someone like me who has only ever gotten the train on her own twice in her life and never travelled/stayed away alone before, this was a pretty big deal for me. After months of mini freak outs, it turned out to not be daunting like I had created in my head. I found it really enjoyable and honestly it was good to have a few days on my own away from things back home, I think I just needed some time away and a change of scenery to gain some perspective. I feel like the mini trip boosted my self esteem too which was something I felt I'd be lacking recently, so it was worth it on that level too.

 It wasn't all just hard work though, I did manage to have a bit of time to explore so many an evening was spent walking around and taking in the sights. Of course one of the first things I did when I first arrived in London was go on a spree in Victoria's Secret, which personally was like a pre-reward for all the work I was going to do ;) (Any excuse really!) and treating myself to some tortellini from Carluccio's for dinner always goes down well with me ;)
One of my goals whilst I was here was to go and see my friend Alice perform live in Mamma Mia! at the Novello Theatre. I have known her since I was born and she's always been a close family friend and for as long as I've known her she's always wanted to perform in theatre and this has been her big break! I was so pleased to hear the news and was dying to go see her! Especially as a few occasions she's performed up north and I've been working so hadn't seen some of her performances but I was adamant to see this one especially and lucky I got too. I love Mamma Mia! anyway so I knew it would be good, but as soon as the music kicked in and the curtains opened and I'd seen she was the first one on stage I felt a sudden wash of emotions and an enormous sense of pride. I honestly could have cried right there haha! I managed to keep it together (just!) and the show was absolutely AMAZING! And I'm not just saying that because of Alice. I thought all the main characters were sooo good! They all played their parts so well and were so funny and they sang the Abba songs brilliantly! I was completely entertained throughout the whole evening, I could have sat there all night watching it over and over again. I was also fortunate to see Alice after the show briefly too which was a sweet little cherry on top of a great evening! :)

The Fashion Retail Academy

So back to the main reason why I was in London now. The FRA building from the outside looks so ordinary, I honestly would have walked straight past it if it wasn't for good ol' Google Maps, but when approaching it I noticed these incredible mannequins in the window, I had never seen anything like it before and thought they looked amazing! There was more inside too. I really liked the variety of ways the mannequins had been transformed into a piece of art, I found it really inspiring. I remember walking into the building and thinking 'Omg there's going to be tons of people and they will know everything and I'm going to feel like an amateur!' but wasn't the case at all! There was 9 of us in the class, different age ranges but everyone was pretty much on the same level. The course was for 3 days from 10am-4.30pm and included so much within that short space of time, not in a 'cramming' type way either just through really good organisation on their behalf. It was a good mixture of lectures and workshops, although it was mainly the first day where we sat the most and were talked through the history and technical terms etc and the rest of the time was little introductions to what we were doing that day before the more hands on stuff which was definitely the more fun part! I really came away knowing a lot more than I initially thought I would and a cool little certificate signed by the Dean which was sent in the post days later to say I'd attended the course as a nice memento of the great experience to keep which I really liked that they did that as I'm one of those people who loves to keep my old certificates and reports from school and old hobbies I used to have to look back on.
There is a few other courses that they have which I'm thinking of looking into for another time as I found this course really helpful and would happily venture back to learn more things from their other courses, plus it's always something additional to add to the ol' CV too and I'd happily return back to London again especially to be a full blown tourist as I didn't get a chance too on this occasion ;)

The Things I Learned
I learned about the history of visual merchandising and the technical terms that are used. I was shown store layouts and had to create a layout to match a customer scenario. I was shown the different types of mannequins and the groupings of mannequins. I also got to create my own accessory display, worked as a team in the Mock Shop where we had to create two wall displays using different items of clothing and accessories. I also had to dissemble, reassemble and dress a mannequin, then in a group choose 3 mannequins and group them together and dress them appropriately and finally create a window display where we got to choose however many mannequins we wanted, clothes for them and props.

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Valentine's Day

Hello lovelies!
As you may already know I absolutely love Valentine's Day, I think it's so sweet that there's a day completely dedicated to celebrating love and showing the special people in your life how much they mean to you or even just having a day to completely spoil yourself with no judgement ;) It doesn't matter if I'm with someone or not I still always make the most of the day, I like to go all out and wear red and heart shaped things etc. haha I love going a bit over the top with these special days, as you can probably tell by my attire above.  I had bought the dress below last year and was adamant I was going to keep it in my wardrobe and wait for Valentine's Day (sad I know!) and with my last minute V-day plans I was so keen to wear it that I'd have even wore it to pick up a Domino's pizza or for a drive through MaccyDs haha! Luckily we managed to get into Zizzi's so that was a bit more appropriate ;)

The week building up to Valentine's day was not the same as it normally is, I'm usually really buzzing with excitement but I recently had to deal with a sad time in my life (hence why I haven't blogged so much either) so I hadn't really felt up for even talking about it as much, which is so unlike me and I was also meant to be in work so I wasn't really too fussed but eventually things had calmed down and my shift was cancelled so I got myself together and made the most of it. I was greeted in the morning with this gorgeous bouquet of flowers that had a lovely bright sunflower, lilies and a glittery red rose and a necklace. Later on in the day we headed out to have our delicious Zizzi's and then went to see Kingsman: The Secret Service, on first impressions of the film, I thought it looked good but after watching it, it turned out to be better than I had anticipated, full of action and some humorous parts too. I'd definitely recommend it :)

Before deciding on my outfit above and before our plans had changed, the outfit at the top of the page was what I was going to wear if we had ended up out for food during the day. It takes my dress I wore last year and layering this cute jumper over the top for a more day time look.
Hope you had a lovely Valentine's Day! <3

Dress: Missguided, Heels: Vivienne Westwood, Ring: Pandora, Clutch: Lulu Guinness.
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