Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Motel Rocks 24 Hour Flash Sale

Starting at 5pm Motel are having a 24h 20% off flash sale on all full priced items on their website. I had a good look at their Christmas collection at their bloggers party earlier in the month, and I must say that the collection is pretty fantastic!
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There are currently some great party dresses on their site, both body con and otherwise, so if you're stuck for what to wear for any upcoming parties, you'd be stupid not to make the most of this 24h discount! However, if you do miss out and still want to order something from Motel you might notice a new icon in my sidebar, which contains a 15% discount code that is valid all year round at Motel as I am now one of Motel's Top Bloggers! 
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I usually don't go for body con styles, but I think this black lace one is lovely, and I'm totally in love with the glittery Gabby dresses from Motel's Christmas ad campaign - I think I need one in my life, but I'm really not sure of which colour to get! As for this blue dress, I really love the cut and the built in waist. 


Check back soon for an outfit post featuring the beautiful black 90's style faux fur coat Motel recently sent me!

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Outfit Post: Missguided

As a little congratulations for (as part of Judging Covers) getting nominated for a Cosmopolitan Blog Award the lovely Sara over at Missguided offered to send me something from their collection. 
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Missguided Green Shift Dress: £29.99, Topshop Cardigan, Topshop Leggings

I chose this lovely dark green belted shift dress, being a massive fan of any dress of skirt with pockets and being in need of some new day dresses.  I ordered a 10 as I'm always worried about things coming up too small, but trying it on through it fits, I think I could have got away with an 8 - I say the sizes are true. The fabric creases like crazy, but at the same time it is what you get for a dress that is such great value.

A big thank you to the team over at Missguided for sending this to me (they also included some tan leggings, but I have not had the chance to try them yet). Now I've been able to see one of their dresses, I think I would place an order with them, but I'd be wary about what sort of fabric I'd pick - I hate ironing!


Have you ordered from Missguided before? Is there anything in their collection you've got your eye on?

Friday, 25 November 2011

Places To Eat In Canterbury: The Hutch (Now Closed)

I've escaped from the busy bustle of London for a few days to spend some time with my family and visiting some of my favourite haunts in my hometown of Canterbury. After helping my Mum with a bit of Christmas shopping on Thursday we stopped off at The Hutch, the only all vegetarian restaurant in Canterbury, opposite the cathedral about 3/4 the way down the beautiful Palace Street. We'd only eaten there once before, about this time last year and we were even more impressed with the meal we had than the delicious one we had been treated to the last time we'd visited. 
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Though it was actually meant as a starter for one person (huge!) we shared these tapas. It is the best type of pot luck when you order because the dishes in the tapas are different every day. This one included a sweet tomato chutney (my favourite), delicious mushroom pate, something with aubergines,  olives and marinated peppers, all served with crisp salad and some really lovely bread.
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When the starter came we both commented on what great value the meal was. We had their lunchtime menu is £7.95 for one course or £9.95 for two - and we felt almost full of delicious food even before we'd started the second course, sharing a starter so you definitely get your moneys worth! When the final bill came it was only just over £20 for the two of us, only a few pounds more than if I'd had one course in an averagely priced place in London. 
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For my main course I had the most delicious burger of the day which was made of beautifully spiced beans and seeds, served with crisp juicy tomato and some really nice chunky potato wedges. So, so delicious but so, so filling I could only eat about half of it! 
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With my meal I had what was probably the most fantastic lemonade I'd ever tasted. It had a really light rose flavour, but you could still really taste the lemons underneath without either of the flavours coming across as tart of overpowering.
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For her main course  my mother had a cheese and onion soufflé. I don't even eat cheese and I thought it looks wonderful! I could see from where she cut into it it was perfectly light and fluffy just like a soufflé should be - I could also see it wobble gently every time I leant against the table!
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For dessert we shared a dairy free chocolate mousse topped with chestnuts and almonds. Though I was rather full I managed to eat quite a bit of the not too rich and deliciously creamy mousse which still managed to be light in spite of its dairy free nature.  

Everything served in The Hutch as well as being vegetarian, is locally sourced and they also serve local beers, wines and ciders with your meal. 


If you have not already done so, the next time you visit Canterbury you must visit The Hutch for an absolutely delicious meal which I promise you'll enjoy if you are a vegetarian or not!

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Product Review: Ron Norsworthy No. 8 Candle

I'm a very big fan of beautifully scented candles - I like lighting them at night and turning off all the lights while I watch TV to wind down for the evening. My current evenings in consist of the first season of Big Love and this N. 8 scent candle from Ron Norsworthy that I was given at the QVC press day
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Isn't it beautifully packaged? I kept it on my shelf for about a week or two before I could bring myself to untie the ribbon! Though, the beautiful smell was permeating the box so it was making my room smell lovely even before I had opened it!
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This scent is  jasmine, orange flower, lilac, lily , hyacinth and palm leaves, all of which I can smell but to me the overriding scent is jasmine. I had a beautiful jasmine candle from Zara last year which I really loved and I really missed, so when I lit this and the familiar smell washed over me and I was over the moon. DSC_0117
It will be available to purchase from QVC next year, though I don't know what it will be priced at yet. Though, it can't cost more than some high end candles, and I'd really recommend this as a gift, perhaps as a housewarming for one of your girlfriends? *edit* 6/12/11 The candle will cost £19.95


What is your favourite scented candle? 

Monday, 21 November 2011

Holiday Gift Guide: The Style Blogger

For the final part of my Holiday Gift Guide series I'm going to tackle the category that will fit most of us - The Style Blogger. As usual, the list is full of things that not only would I love to receive or have tried and tested, and I think that both you and your friends will love! Also, don't forget to check out my guides on what to buy your BookwormFashionista and Beauty Blogger friends!
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1. Parisian Chic by Ines de la Fressange, £12.29 - I reviewed this book back in July, and I still maintain that it is one of the best personal style books out there. Lots of beautiful photos, great ideas for chic and stylish dressing, and if your friend is planning on visiting Paris anytime soon you have to buy it from them as there is such a great and extensive section on where to shop, visit and eat! 

2. Nars Beautiful Life Palette, £39.00 - This is the perfect luxury gift for any Nars lover. This includes eye, cheek and lip colours in a handy zip case, making it also the perfect luxury gift for frequent travellers and jet setters! 

3. Models Own & Wah Nails Nail Art Pen, £6 - While it is easy to get loads of cheap coloured nail pens off of ebay, I think this one from Models Own is the perfect gift for someone if you know that they're looking into getting into nail art. 

4. Mulberry 'Lily' Bag, £495 - By far the most expensive item on my list, I decided to leave it in here because I think it is something that every girl needs. Black, great quality and practical - my best friend has one, she uses it all the time and it is amazing on nights out or when you want to have your hands free. 

5. L'Oreal Professional Mythic Oil, £11.95 - My stylist had been using this on me for a while when I received it in a Glossybox and while everyone raves about Moroccan Oil (which I also use after receiving a bottle) I think it is much, much better.


What will you be buying your style blogging friends this season? 

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Holiday Gift Guide: The Fashionista

So today I'm going to tackle what to buy your Fashionista friends. I love everything on this list - I want it all for myself to be perfectly honest! If you missed them, here are the links to my guides on what to buy your Bookworm friends and your Beauty Blogger friends!
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1. Polaroid Instant Camera, £79.99 - Who doesn't want a Polaroid camera? Instant, shake to see the picture photos? Amazing! I love the fact that they now sell these again and I'd really love one to take around with me on my travels or when I'm hanging around with friends, and I'm sure your friends would love one too! 

2. Kurt Geiger Gift Card, £20 - Kurt Geiger has so many cute shoes and accessories it is nearly always impossible to choose, so I got rather excited to find they do gift cards which can also be used in their online store - the perfect present if you just want something you can slip into a Christmas card!

3. Nars Orgasm Gift Set, £22 - Nars products are pretty amazing, as is their cult 'Orgasm' shade. This set included the Super Orgasm lip gloss, Orgasm blush and Laguna bronzer, also a classic! A perfect gift for any Nars Junkie friend, or even to buy yourself - I know I want to! 

4. Essie 'Trophy Wife' Nail Polish, £9.95 - This is from their New Year Metallics collection, and I think the colour of blue is absolutely beautiful. Not only can is be used as a festive colour because it is a metallic, but it can be used all year round too. Also, Essie nail polishes are pretty fantastic! 

5. Zara Gold Sequin Clutch, £29.99 - Zara always make amazing clutches, and this seasons offerings are no exception. With all the golden festive sparkles on this beauty I can totally see why the blogasphere has been going a little crazy over this number!


What will you be buying your Fashionista friends? Don't forget to check back for the fourth part of my gift guide series, what to buy your Style Blogger friends! 

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Holiday Gift Guide: The Bookworm

So, it is that time of year once more. I've already spent countless hours browsing online and wondering around Westfield pondering what I am going to buy my family this year. So you don't have to go through the same headache I am at the moment (I have a birthday and a Christmas gift to buy my Grandfather for December and I still don't have a clue about either of them!), like last year I've put together a series of four handy guides to your Christmas shopping: what to buy The Bookworm, today over on The Glossy Guide what to buy The Beauty Blogger, and later this week on rachelphipps.com what to buy The Fashionista and The Style Blogger - enjoy, and I hope they're helpful!
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1. 'R' Black Tote Bag, £12 - Ever since I received mine (less than 24 hours after I ordered it no less!) it has become one of my favourite tote bags in my collection. You can buy them in any letter (they also stock a lot of phrases and punctuation marks), and you can also get rhinestone and black on white versions - the perfect literary gift! (You can see this bag in an outfit post here!)

2. Hotel Chocolate Caramel Penguin Chocolate Shapes, £5.50 - Made out of Hotel Chocolate's delicious caramel flavoured chocolate this adorable little penguins are the perfect treat to nibble on in front of the wood fire when you curl up to enjoy a good book. 

3. Emma Bridgewater Reindeer Mug, £17.95 - I have a bit of a thing for cute and adorable mugs, and I've always loved Emma Bridgwater designs, all hand painted, as I'd always thought they'd make perfect gifts. This adorable reindeer mug is therefore not an exception. Cinnamon hot chocolate with whipped cream and marshmallows anyone?

4. 20 My Cup Of Tea Wild Berry Teabags, £4.29 - This is the tasty berry tea they serve in the Hummingbird bakery. Sweet and fruity, the special bags make a clearer, pure taste which is absolutely delicious. Perfect to drink out of the Reindeer mug! 

5. Philosophy Vanilla Birthday Cake Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath, £14 - If you are, like me one of those people who like to sink down in a nice hot bubble bath with a good book you're always going to need a great stock of fantastic smelling bubble baths. This one from Philosophy does in fact smell of Vanilla Birthday Cake, and it doubles as a shower gel and a shampoo (that actually works might I add) no less!


What are you going to buy your literary inclined friends this year? Make sure you keep checking back for my gift guides to help you shop for the Fashionistas and Style Bloggers in your life!

Friday, 18 November 2011

Weekly Love - Week 83

+ I love the video made at the Motel Rocks party last week, though I knew it was a bad idea to let the videographer film me touching up my lipstick - look at that frown! 




+ Christmas shopping in Westfield for my family.


+ New TV shows I adore: Hart of Dixie, Unforgettable, Revenge and The Lying Game.


This Los Angeles photo diary makes me want to visit so badly! Also very jealous of the Hart Of Dixie set visit - one of my new favourite shows!


+ Getting rolls of film back from being developed and remembering photos I took months ago. 


+ St James' Park when all the leaves are down on a crisp Autumn morning. 

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+ OPI Glitter nail polish, I really love this shade!

+ Fee has written a brilliant post on affiliate links - a must read for any bloggers interested in monetization. She recommends Skimlinks as I do - its totally amazing!



+ All day American breakfasts at The Diner. 




+ Discussing The Bell Jar at Sherin's book group.



What have you been enjoying this week?

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Press Day: Matalan S/S12

The prize for the prettiest press showcase this season has to go to Matalan. Who would not like to wonder into a showroom full of pretty pastels, fresh flowers and scented by Diptyque candles while you're serves mini canapés and cakes, fresh lemonade and tea in delicate china cups?!
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I totally forgot to mention the bunches of balloons and the carousel horse, didn't I?!
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I love this thick knit light summer jumper. It reminded me of this cream one my mother used to wear in the summer for years until it got too tatty and my father  and I made her throw it away!
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A much as I loved these 'Sorbet' shades, I was starting to get a little worried. They are lovely to look at, but we all know I'm a dark colour kind of girl!
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Oh, good! The Primitive collection was much more up my street!
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I don't really go in for prints, but I really liked this dress, maybe because the print was so clean and simple, and not too repetitive and busy?
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Some of the bags were lovely and perfectly on trend - great if you like to regularly change your handbag so don't want to splash out on a designer piece.
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Chloe-esque bright leather tote bags get me very excited.
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Their home collections were my favourite part of the showcase. They made me wish I had my own place to decorate!
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My favourite collection was the nautical one. I love the whole by the seaside feel of it, reminded me of being in a exceptionally well decorated beach house!
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I love these glass bottles. They use them quite regularly in lots of different resturants to serve the table water in my are of France.
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Their patio collection got me excited for summer again, always my favourite season - is it bad I'm already looking forward to sitting outside with a glass of wine an a good book in France while I wait for my Dad to hurry up with the barbecue when it is only November?!
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I loved the goldfish and the shellfish on these plates - perfect for a picnic!

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Lust List: Mulberry

One of my favourite quintessentially British labels by far has to be Mulberry. As I was browsing through their online store deciding what I'm spend my imaginary thousands on, I thought to myself that they don't just sell handbags - the rest of their collections are equally as beautiful and deserving of cult status! 
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This dark blue biker jacket has to be my favourite piece in the Mulberry collection at the moment. Navy, with leather arms, a side zip and a belt - absolutely perfect, even if it does cost almost £1,000!

These shoes come in loads of different colours, but I really liked these metallic ones for a bit of festive season glamour. I think they'd be perfect to wear to events as they're rather versatile looking! I think I'd be worried about wearing them out though since I had an accident with a pair of boots on the tube and Rose taught me the important lesson ever to wear nice shoes on the underground! 
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Black Lily Bag: £495, Rosie Gloves: £120, Full Black Taffeta Skirt: £275

I've wanted this lovely little black shoulder bag ever since my best friend Kathryn got it, and even more so after I've seen how useful it has been! Perfect for day and night, hands free and you can store a surprising amount inside it, and thats as well as your Blackberry and car keys! 

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Annie Dress: £695, Bayswater Flat Sandals: £175,  Black Continental Wallet: £250

I love how plain and simple this black Annie dress is. I wear a lot of black, but I don't really have any nice plain black dresses that can take me from day to night just with a little switch over of accessories.

Speaking of simple, how simple but amazing are these Bayswater flats? I know it is winter now, and way to early to be thinking about summer sandals, but would these not be perfect for every sunshine occasion?

I love my red polkadot Cath Kidston wallet to bits, but I have been lusting after a plain black leather fold over wallet for quite a while now - this one seems perfect with a big pouch for coins and lots of slots for different cards in the fold over. 


What is your favourite item from Mulberry?  

Monday, 14 November 2011

Press Day: QVC S/S12

On Friday I heaved over to the beautiful Oui Oui rooms just off Oxford Street with Sherin and Lil to check out what QVC will be selling next year at their S/S12 press day. 
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This was one of the very first pieces we were greeted with - beautiful!
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Not one to really wear very bright colours myself (I wear mostly black and dark grey to be honest) I try to lighten it up a bit in the summer months  by trying to wear some lighter greys - these items look right up my street!
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These two pieces were my favourite things in any of the collections. So pretty, sparkly, detailed and totally awesome!
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I was surprised by how much incredible perfume QVC sell - and lets be honest, in my book somewhere is not worth shopping at if they don't sell Benefit Cosmetics - you can some some of my favourite Benefit mascaras in the back!
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I've been curious about Philosophy products for a while, but had not really managed to  get myself to fork out for some. This Orange Blossom shampoo/ shower gel/ bubble bath is new, and luckily were were all given a bottle to take home and try so I'll be reviewing it soon on The Glossy Guide, as well as their new perfume!
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They also stock L'Occitane products - another brand I'd been meaning to try - review of their popular hand cream also to follow!
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There were a lot of Inika products on display.  Do you   remember their mineral eyeshadow I reviewed? I've been wearing it a lot recently, and thats making me want to try some more of their products. DSC_0126
We spent quite a lot of time chatting to the makeup artists a Jemma Kidd and heading about some of their new products.
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They have not launched yet, but I loved these little handy mini kits.
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Do you ever buy anything from QVC? What is your favourite item from these photos?