Monday, 29 August 2011

Currently Reading: Blogger Edition #1

As I'm currently away enjoying myself in France, I thought I'd share 10 of the bloggers who I've really been enjoying at the moment - new reads and some old favourites too!
1. Alix at I Covet Thee

Alix's blog is one of my newest favourites, a lovely mix of outfit posts, product reviews and weekly roundups. Her layout is fantastic, and her photos are so clear. She's only been blogging since March, I can't wait to see what she does next!
2. Doinac at Golden Diamonds

Aside from her fantastic styling and striking looks, Doniac's main ambitions are to develop the fashion industry in Moldova and become a politician - a girl after my own heart then! Her blog is truly international street style at its best. 

From as much of her personalty that comes over in her blog, Alice reminds me of a fantastic mix of my best friend and I. I was hooked from the first post of hers I read when she was professing her love for Mountain Dew. Her blog is quirky and fun, and a very refreshing alternative from the usual bloggers domain. 
_DSC0472 4. Kristina at KAYTURE

Kristina's photos are simply beautiful, and the combination of her fantastic taste in clothes, her model looks (she's in the running for Miss Switzerland) and her super talented photographer boyfriend takes on their travels makes for a breathtaking and inspiring style blog!

5. Susie at Takeout In Couture

I love the colourful themed mood boards Susie posts, as well as her street style photos that always have a whimsical quality to them (though the above picture is one of mine, not Susie's!) It also does not hurt that she has a wonderful but simple style, and looks beautiful in almost every single photo ever taken of her. 
dsc0055zv 6. Sarah at Temporary:Secretary 

Sarah's blog has recently been going from strength to strength. She's been taking more and more fantastic outfit photos, and all of her pictures are so bright and full of colour. Her Look Show entry makes for a fantastic showcase of just how talents she is. 
omg 7. Gala at Gala Darling

Gala's blog has always been one of my favourites, the first blog I ever read and the reason I started blogging in the first place. I love her bright and quirky outfit posts, her lovely tips to making your life much happier, and her wonderful takes of her New York adventures, as well as her sojourns with the one and only Betsy Johnson herself!
2 8. Jenny at Jenny From The Block

Jenny's outfit posts from sunny California make me wish I was back there again. She embodies that classic and laid back West Coast style, but brings her own individual edge, which along with her beautiful photographs make her blog a must read. (She also posts fun things like behind the scenes photos from photo shoots too!)
a466345a 9. Emma from Milkteef

I love Emma's cute outfit posts, as well as the many wonderful snapshots of her every day life and blogger events she attends. If you love having a snoop at other peoples wish lists and purchases, Emma's blog is for you!
8 10. Michelle from Daisybutter

Last but not least, I love Michelle's sweet layout and her wonderful snapshot posts, including her insightful week in photos and her wonderful how to wear info graphic posts that will solve all of your wardrobe dilemmas! 

Who's blogs have you been enjoying at the moment?

Friday, 26 August 2011

Weekly Love - Week 78

+ This photo is of ice creams in St Malo. It is also my way of letting you all know that I'm off to my house in France this afternoon for a week where I have no internet - so any posts that you read this week will be scheduled, and hopefully I'll have one or two more new French Photo Diaries to show you when I get back!

+ Nylon interviews Leighton Meester. I love Nylon, and I love Leighton Meester. 

+ Shopping for uni stuff.

+ Homemade pizza and French skinny fries. 

+ Cold Mexican paella. Because the coconut milk in my cocktail on A Level celebration night made me sick, I took my paella away with me. Stored in the fridge, its given me a couple of very taste snack meals!

+ Having the most amazing group of friends.

+ Katie's Alice In Wonderland cupcakes are both very incredible and very adorable!

+ Writing all my favourite things I like to cook that are student friendly into one big book - compiling my very own student cookbook!

+ I need something from this store in my life...

+ Ellie shares some pretty amazing cocktail recipes!

+ Catching up on the 3rd season of True Blood - so happy it seems to be following the plot of the 4th Southern Vampire mystery book!

+ Vivianna has written a first time fresher uni advice post that every girl off to uni for the first time in September MUST read!

+ Buying kitchen stuff and crockery for uni - a novelty for me!
+ Chardonnay Wine Therapy moisturiser from my Boudoir Prive box - I'm totally in love with the wine smell, and it works really well too!

+ I NEED to make this chalk board DIY...

+ Packing for holiday evenings in my nice and quiet French house: The West Wing Season 1, The Good Wife Season 1 and The Sims 3!

+ Style tip: knot your scarves at the bottom to add a little detail to your look!

+ Listening to the Joy The Baker podcast.

+ Katie has a recipe for Rose Creams - I actually love her for this!

+ The Lying Game - a new ABC show based on the book by Sara Shepherd, the same woman who wrote the Pretty Little Liars books - I love it!

+ Speaking of posts on starting uni, I've been using Sarah's list I saved form last year on what to pack - and she's just reposted it on her new blog!

+ Finding the people who will be living in my flat at uni on Facebook and getting to know them.

+ Why am I not in London till mid September? I want to go boating on the green lake on the roof of Selfridges. I'm not even kidding...

+ Fresh orange juice and homemade banana bread for breakfast.

What have you been enjoying this week?

Friday, 19 August 2011

Weekly Love - Week 77

+ Totally in love with my new Ciate paint pot colour - shame the formula is not as good as my beloved Essie... 

+ This fact about Hamlet that Katy left for me in her comment about my weekend in London post: Did you know that when David Tennant performed as Hamlet for the RSC, the skull used for Yorick was that of composer/pianist Andre Tchaikowsky, who, in his will, donated his skull to the RSC and asked for it to be used as a prop on stage, but Tennant was one of the only Hamlet's who felt comfortable using a real skull. A little bit of nerd theatre info for you there! Incidentally, Andre Tchaikowsky donated the rest of his body to medical science, not just his skull! This is yet another reason why David Tennant is my favourite Hamlet!

+ Betty has posted some pictures from her trip to San Francisco - god I miss that city...

+ I got a change to  get my hands on Benefit's new 'They're Real Mascara' before it launches!

+ Daniela already knows me well enough to know to send me a bbm when she's in the Selfridges food hall.

+ Penny slot machines at the seaside. Except, you now have to play with 2p pieces not 1p!

+ You can get an amazing nail polish free with this months Marie Claire!

+ Recording a pilot for a current affairs podcast with my best friend. It will never go public, but it was a great test run for a podcast that I hope I'll be able to share with you soon!

Taylor has some fantastic tips for taking outfit photos.
+ Maroon 5's 'Moves Like Jagger' music video - so awesome!

+ IFB talks about the ethics of selling gifted items.

+ The smell of the BBQ being lit.

+ Love this outfit post from Blushing Ambition.

+ Working on my English Breakfast pizza recipe.

Taylor Swift's 'Sparks Fly' video - her live shows look like such fun!

+ Listening to Katy Perry's 'One Of The Boys' album - still incredible!

Laetitia explains how awkward it is to explain that you are a fashion blogger as your career to non bloggers.

+ Pinkberry frozen yogurt in Selfridges.

+ Amy gives us some tips on how to enjoy spending time alone.
+ Some of the best calamari I've ever tasted, in Chimichanga.

+ I reviewed Sex On Tuesdays by June Whyte over at Judging Covers.

+ Organising a big leaving do for Susie, with Sherin. Lots of bloggers will be involved in London - stay tuned!

Beauty pageants in prison, and why they are a good thing.

+ I want this Wildfox sweater in black - why does it have to be so expensive?!

Leia asks if fashion blogging has made us more body conscious.

+ An afternoon at Bluewater and dinner out to celebrate my getting into University and my imminent move to London - fantastic, even if my discovering that I was allergic to coconut milk in a very bad way at the restaurant! Thank you to everyone for your such kind and lovely congratulations messages!

+ Fantastic tips for bloggers who wish to cover Fashion Week.

+ I want this clutch from Emily Cho - so chic!

What have you been enjoying this week?

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Boudoir Privé: August 2011

After I wrote about Boudoir Privé, a monthly luxury lifestyle sample box subscription, the guys over at Boudoir Privé kindly agreed to send me a press box to review and share with you all. As a bit of a side note before I start the actual review, there was a bit of a mix up with my box, and I just wanted to thank the guys I spoke to at Boudoir Privé customer service for being wonderfully helpful!
It comes in a standard postal carton like most sample box services like this, and everything inside arrived in good condition.  
I really like the pink box, the way it folds over with a magnet, but because of this I don't think I'll use it as much as I would boxes with lift off lids. DSC_0018
I do like the way it is presented when you open the box, with the bow and the little note from the people there.
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I thought that the fact the note was personalised and handwritten was a really nice touch!  
I loved the presentation, and it all had a luxe feel to it. However, when I opened it up, I could not help but feel a little bit disappointed, but I just can't put my finger on why. I just think that if I paid £10 for this, I would have felt disappointed in a way that I have not from some other subscription sample boxes I have tried.
I'm interested to try this conditioner, because it is not something that I've used before, and I'm not sure that I'd  buy it for myself to try...
However, I'm looking forward to sampling this moisturiser, I can't believe I have not get - anything with body cream AND wine in the name has to be right up my street! *edit* It smells just like wine on the skin. I'm TOTALLY in love!
I'm very happy that this box is giving me the chance to try out for luxe, high end hair product. I think I must spend stupid amounts of money on maintaining my hair, and I'm always on the hunt that will make it stronger, silkier and glossier!
I have seen in some peoples reviews that they were unhappy to get an anti ageing cream in their box, but I don't mind so much. One of my old Clinique ones was anti-ageing, I just used it as it was a great cream. Also, I think  these boxes are more friendly towards a slightly older (basically non student) demographic where the recipient has a bit more disposable income for luxury products.
While I usually go for quite plain perfumes,  I love trying out new ones. Like everything else in the box, I'd never heard of this brand before.
As a big herbal tea drinker, I'm really, really excited about sampling are these tea samples from Bloom. I think it is absolutely inspired to include tea as more of a 'lifestyle' sample in these boxes.

My verdict? I think Boudoir Privé is a fantastic service, but a service that is just not for me. As Lily said in her review, I personally would rather be receiving samples of well known branded products that I would have tried if I could afford to, but I can see how unknown luxe brand samples could appeal to someone different too.

Who else received one of these boxes in the post? What did you think of it? (P.S. If you'd like to try a box at 50% off (only £5) enter 1BOX12 at the checkout before 31st August!)

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Book Review: Style Yourself

It took me a while to decide what to say about this book. In the end, I decided that Style Yourself is a book by fashion bloggers, about fashion bloggers but not for fashion bloggers.
Style Yourself is basically a guide to dressing by some of the world top style bloggers that helps you draw from inspiration when getting dresses, by following their example.
The begining of the book starts with how to build your wardrobe. Pretty basic stuff really, unless you've worn uniform every day of your life, or you've never had to dress yourself, or never really had any clothes, this bit is a no brainer for a lot of girls. Not really useful; when I read books, I like to learn something from them - nothing new here!
Throughout the book there are pages showing you the different cuts and shapes you can get for any type of garment.
DSC_0029 Most of these I could not actually think of when I'd find them useful, but some of the pages, such as the one on different skirts I did find rather interesting, and it had some useful tips on choosing a skirt to flatter your body shape. 
Something else that I did actually find very useful was this guide to different washes of jeans - something I always find confusing when I'm confronted by the sea of denim whenever I walk into Gap of the Levi shop for a new pair!
Something else that I thought was a bit of an insult to the intelligence to the reader, the colour wheel. I'm seriously worried about the standard of primary education you received if you don't know that red, blue and yellow are primary colours, how to mix green, orange and purple and which colours are corresponding. DSC_0021
I did like some of the pages suggesting alternative ways to wear a garment, like this piece on rock and band tees. This might just be me, but I came up with all of these ways to wear, and more when I was thinking how I could incorporate my every growing collection of tees into my everyday look.
What I really loved was  reading the  pages where a blogger took apart an outfit they were wearing and explained their inspiration behind it, as well as their general inspirations when getting dressed. We spend so much time looking at the pretty pictures on our favourite style blogs, but not much time thinking about the background to any given look.
This book actually gave me a bit of respect for Tavi Genson. I never really got what the big deal about her as, but actually reading her talk about her outfits, she is actually quite  an artist. DSC_0037
An idea that I have had from reading the book? Monochrome outfits - I've  never actually thought about dressing in all one colour that is not black before.
Finally, one of my favourite pictures from the book, one of my favourite style bloggers Carrie Harwood looking fabulous in a swimsuit that I think I need in my life!

I think the best thing about this book has to be the fact I have just discovered so many incredible style bloggers I never knew about! However, I think if I'd had a chance to flip through this book before I brought it, I would have saved my money to spend on something else. 

Has anyone else read a copy of Style Yourself yet?

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Copenhagen, July 2007

Second in my batch of forgotten travel photos are some shots from my day in Copenhagen in Denmark in July 2007. I spent a couple of weeks cruising around Scandinavia, so got to spend a day in quite a few amazing cities.
I must take a second to apologise that these photos are not up to the usual standard you have hopefully come to expect for me and my blog, 4 years is a very long time, and I'm glad to say that my photography skills have come a very long way in that time! 
This statue is the reason I'm posting the rest of the less than brilliant photos from the rest of my day in the city, I just had to show it to you - the symbol of Copenhagen, The Little Mermaid. She sits in the port, looking out to sea in a tribute to and reminder of Copenhagen's most famous writer, Hans Christian Anderson. 
I really loved the cities architecture, and how green it was. Apparently they pay sky high taxes there, but no one minds too much as the streets are so clean, safe and their public services like health and education are world class.
PICT0162-01 PICT0184-02 
This ship we saw in the museum that  housed the royal collection is made entirely out of very, very fine and intricately carved ivory - so amazing!
I seem to remember that all of the Danish crown jewels were absolutely beautiful, and quite a sight to behold!
Have any of you ever been to Copenhagen?

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Introducing: Foam Magazine

I love reading about other bloggers, so when I saw the 'Blogger Issue' of Foam Magazine in Selfridges when I was picking up a copy of Teen Vogue, I knew I had to grab it. 
It turns out that buying a copy has to have been the second best magazine purchase I have ever made. (The first being my first ever copy of Nylon, obviously!) 
I think the best way to describe Foam is a West Coast version of Nylon. (I usually associate magazines I love to Nylon, I have decided that Jalouse is Nylons French cousin) I don't know if my total obsession with California has managed to spill out over into my blog at all, but sitting reading Foam on the train coming back from London I was transported back to the Golden Coast. 
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I was so excited to read an interview with Sophia, the brains behind Nasty Gal Vintage, the blogger online go to for vintage and unique clothing. I've spent hours lusting after items on their website, and it was fascinating to find out exactly how the company came about! 
I also don't really read interior design articles much (if you lived with my parents you'd feel the same!) but I really enjoyed this piece about Free People's Creative Directors pad.
I was not disappointed by the 8 page jam packed feature on bloggers and blogging, including one of my favourite Californian style bloggers Natalie Suarez, which was the reason I bought the magazine in the first place.
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Finally, the music section was different, edgy and actually made me want to look the artists up, something that I don't usually find when I'm reading about music in magazines anymore. 

What is your most recent new magazine find?