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Monday, 20 February 2017

Pretty Cake Stands & How I Use Them

Over the years I have managed to collect quite a few cake stands! I used to do a lot of baking and often used the stands for the cakes I baked.  Although I don't bake much any more unfortunately, I do still make use of the cake stands I have accumulated. In fact I have had two of them in my bedroom for years, both of which I use daily.

floral cake stands in vintage bedroom interior

These two ceramic cake stands are from Cath Kidston which I bought over 5 years ago when I was still a student. They were a little bit pricey for my tiny budget, but they were too pretty to resist and I was determined to get lots of use out of them.

The cake stands sit next to each other on a little table in my bedroom.  The single tiered one is perfect for keeping my hair curlers and straighteners on as I don't have to worry about them burning my furniture surfaces.  The colourful floral print on the ceramic is still good as new and the daily heat from the appliances hasn't caused any damage at all!

floral cake stands in vintage bedroom interior

I use the tiered one as a little desk tidy to be honest. It's nice and easy to use just as a bit of storage and it stops me from losing small things like hair grips and safety pins! I keep all kinds of bits on there.. lipsticks, pens, sweets, receipts, sunglasses, jewellery.. all sorts! And because it's next to my door it's easy access so sometimes I end up just chucking anything on there on my way past!  I think it makes quite a neat and pretty storage solution, and you can get quite a lot on this three tiered one!

floral cake stands in vintage bedroom interiorfloral cake stands in vintage bedroom interior

If you like the idea of using a cake stand to keep your little bits and pieces on, check out these beauties I found...
floral cake stands  vintage
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Saturday, 18 February 2017

What Blogging Means To Me

My first ever blog post was published on 3rd April 2010 and was a pretty useless piece of 'content'.  In almost 7 years it has still only amassed 655 views.  In a time before Pinterest, I used to browse the web and save tonnes of photos of things I thought were cute or pretty to my little laptop hard drive. When my hard drive got full, I decided to upload all of the photos I had saved onto this very blog! I did it for myself, and I never thought anyone would ever see these uploads of lots of cakes and pretty houses. I just wanted a place for myself to store all of the photos I found from anywhere and everywhere. 

These kind of photo posts continued for months and months before I actually wrote something. In fact, I didn't actually start writing anything 'properly' until over a year later. If you fancy a giggle, you can check out my first ever OOTD post! It's awful, but sometimes it's nice to look back and see how far I've come and how things in my life and the blogging world in general has changed. 

Floral vintage bedroom and laptopFloral vintage bedroom and laptop

When I started blogging I never thought anyone would ever find let alone read my blog. I think when I started I caught the blogging craze just at its peak when loads of blogs suddenly popped up and everyone was commenting on everyone else's posts, and we all shared other blogs 'buttons' on our sidebars. Ahh, those were the days! Overtime, some bloggers have stopped completely, others have continued, and of course now there's new bloggers too!

So I just wanted to do a little post about what blogging means to me...

Internet Friends 

Bloggers internet friends

Remember when you were always told not to meet strangers off the internet? Well I think pretty much everyone these days does that now! But I'm not talking about creepy Tinder dates, I'm talking about meeting other bloggers from online who become 'real life friends'.  It's cheesy AF, but one of the best things to come from blogging is meeting other bloggers. To be honest, I'm quite antisocial in general so I don't often go to events etc to meet other bloggers. 

 Bloggers internet friends

But back in 2012 I went along to a fashion event in Birmingham that a few other bloggers were invited to, and I met Terri and Tereza (and I believe Charl too!) for the very first time. Since then, we've met up regularly and I spend many a weekend drunk in Stoke.  Hurray for internet friends! 

Blogging can lead to jobs

 Back in January I did a post for the new year about plans I had for 2017 and one of the things I wanted to achieve was finding a new job.  Well.. less than a week after writing that blog post I was offered not one, but two jobs in SEO/Digital Marketing! And without my blog that would not have happened and I would be working in a call centre or something forever. 

I decided it was time for a change at the beginning of the year and applied for a few jobs and had a couple of interviews. In all of the interviews I've been to since starting my blog, it has been a talking point and something I can speak openly and confidently about. Nothing is worse than when an interviewer asks 'what are your hobbies or interests' and the only thing you can think of is 'I like going out with my mates and shopping'.   

I remember when I graduated uni my first job was working for a lady who ran a cake business.  The job was just doing admin and the social media pages, but she gave me the job straight away after seeing my blog.  She said she could tell from my blog that she liked my personality and she thought I was right for the job just from that.

New job gift chocolate champagne

You can dress blogging up as much or as little as you like, but it shows that you have literacy skills, good communication, you can network with others, and you can do magic things with a computer. Blogging is hard work, and if you put your blog on your CV it's a talking point and something to be proud of because it shows you are determined to do something a bit different, and you are proactive in your spare time.

New job

So next Monday I start my very first job in the digital marketing world as a SEO Executive! It's a fairly junior role as I've never done anything like this before, but I am so excited to learn new things which I am genuinely interested in and hopefully can apply to my own blog!

And of course... the freebies!

I don't just mean the free lipsticks that get sent out to every blogger in the UK.  Don't get me wrong, these types of things are great and work wonders for the brand. But my favourite collaborations are with brands that I would buy even if it wasn't free such as Soap & Glory, Sass & Belle, Joules and smaller independent companies.  I love being able to work with such a wide range of brands ranging from my old favourites to discovering and falling in love with new brands too!

beauty blogger georgio armani lipstickbeauty blogger soap and glory set

Blogging has brought my lots of opportunities over the years and I've been lucky enough to review some amazing hotels, restaurants, clothes and all sorts of random things.  I even went on a press trip to Belgium with Ford to test drive their new Fiesta, and I also received laser eye surgery which I could never have done if it wasn't for my blog! So if anyone ever says blogging isn't worth the time.. they're definitely wrong.  


Blogging is extremely tough work and requires a lot of dedication, time, and perseverance. I'm by no means a 'big blogger' and I sometimes do fall out of love with blogging. Sometimes I am lazy, and sometimes I get writers block. 

I don't have a fancy camera, and I'm still using one I bought for £50 from Tesco in 2012.  I plan on working a lot harder at blogging this year (maybe I'll buy a new camera too..) and I really want to start producing good quality content more frequently. It's tiring, but overall I love blogging and I love my blog! 

Share the link to your first ever blog post below... if you dare!




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Saturday, 11 February 2017

Springing into Fashion

So it might be snowing across the UK today, but I promise you that spring is coming! Spring/summer fashion trends are my favourite because generally it means pretty floral prints galore. This post which is in collaboration with MK1 Shopping & Leisure Park is taking a sneak peek at what to expect for Spring 2017 on the high street.

 MK1 Shopping & Leisure Park

 This is my local retail park located in Bletchley, Milton Keynes. It's a fairly new shopping destination that opened in 2012 which is located just next to the MK Dons football stadium. It has a range of some of the best high street stores including Marks & Spencer, Outfit, River Island, Next, and my favourites: Primark, New Look and H&M. 

Even though the centre of Milton Keynes is best known for its enormous shopping mall which was once the longest shopping mall in the world, the city centre is far too much hassle for me.  I hate the hassle of finding and paying for a parking space, and the fact that the mall is so huge means that you have to walk so far to get from one end to the other.  Also.. there's no Primark.  

The MK1 Shopping & Leisure Park now also has a new IMAX cinema along with a selection of the nations favourite restaurants including Pizza Express, Nando's, TGI Friday's, Chimichanga, Bella Italia, Frankie & Benny's and Prezzo.  With the great range of shops and restaurants on offer, this is now my favourite place to spend my Saturdays!

Spring Trends


spring summer 2017 fashion mannequin shop high streetspring summer 2017 fashion mannequin shop high street
spring summer 2017 fashion mannequin shop high streetspring summer 2017 fashion mannequin shop high street
spring summer 2017 fashion mannequin shop high street
I went to the park one evening last week to take a look at the new spring summer ranges available.  I noticed a lot of pink/nude shades and of course, floral prints.  Embroidery looks set to stick around too, with lots of embroidered skirts, accessories, and even footwear in all of the shops I visited.  

For a less girlie look, I also noticed leather biker jackets on the mannequins in New Look, H&M, and Primark, and some sophisticated traditional macs in M&S.

Summer Holidays

  spring summer 2017 fashion mannequin shop high street primark bikini holidayspring summer 2017 fashion mannequin shop high street primark bikini holiday
Even though it's only February, all of the stores have already started to stock summer holiday clothing and Primark already has rails and rails of flip flops, sandals, and swimwear. I have to wait until September for my summer holiday, so I managed to resist buying anything so soon!  

Valentine's Day

Also with Valentine's Day just around the corner, Primark currently has lots of lacy lingerie and sassy outfits on display. I love all of the cute little bralets and silky kimonos!

Homeware

  
I thought I'd also share some photos from the new Primark homeware range! Their new range is very bright and summery, with lots of tropical holiday prints, cactus accessories, and flamingo cushions. I always love their bedding ranges and they have some great sets in at the moment worth checking out. They also have a range of rainbow, unicorn crazy sparkly stuff too. How weird yet amazing is that cat/unicorn glittery snowglobe?!

My recent purchases...

 
 
Here's a few pieces I bought on my most recent shopping trip.  The blue embroidered shirt was only £10 in Primark and is perfect to wear with a denim a-line skirt for work or over a pair of skinny jeans.  I think embroidery is one of my favourite trends at the moment! I also bought a pair of black suede boots for only £15 from Primark which are just stunning. I also managed to find the black embroidered cotton dress that I had my eye on when I saw it online, it was only £13 in Primark!

From New Look I bought a pair of real leather suede wedged ankle boots which were reduced from £39.99 to only £24. You can't beat a good pair of ankle boots! I also bought this gorgeous classic mac from Primark for only £14 which will be ideal for wearing throughout spring when the weather starts to brighten up. And lastly, I bought this gorgeous embellished clutch bag from New Look which will be perfect for a summer wedding!  



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Thursday, 9 February 2017

Life In Instagram

Check out my latest Instagram catch up post!

Beauty, Jimmy Choo perfume and cosmeticsCharity shop fashion and homeware buys 
On my most recent trip to Stoke, Terri took me to the Freeport Shopping Outlet which is a little mall with a few discount stores (and a Burger King 🐷).  My favourite shop is their Beauty Outlet where I picked up a couple of little bits. I found this New CID eyeshadow quad palette which was only £3.49, reduced from £22, and I also picked up the W7 Hollywood Bronze & Glow highlighter and bronzer palette which was only £3.99.  In Home Bargains I also found this 'unicorn tears' water cup which I use constantly at work and it is so cute and only £1.49! 

I haven't had much luck finding goodies in charity shops lately, but I did find this set of four pretty floral dinner plates for only £3 which I am so pleased with! I also picked up the anchor print skirt for £1 and the floral Next summer dress for only £4.

Merlin the blue eyed ragdoll catMerlin the blue eyed ragdoll cat 
 Here's your dose of my little Baby Merl... isn't he handsome!  I bought him the little sombrero on holiday in December. He doesn't like my gift. Ungrateful kitty 🐱

Long blonde curly hairNew Look embellished clutch bag for wedding
Here's my lovely long hair after I dyed it darker, but before I got it cut. I got it 'trimmed' recently and now I feel like it's really short (it's not)! Remind me not to get my hair cut again for a very long time.

I bought this stunning embellished clutch bag in the New Look sale for only £10. It was too beautiful to resist, and I am sure I can make some use of it at some point! 

Patisserie Valerie chocolate cakePatisserie Valerie chocolate cake
Patisserie Valerie have recently launched a brand new limited edition gateau which will be around until the end of April. The new gateau, which is Chocolate, Honeycomb and Caramel flavour, was designed by a customer as part of a competition to create the next Patisserie Valerie gateau! 

I got to try out the 'Madame Valerie Gateau' a couple of weeks ago, and I loved how it was decorated with salted caramel and white chocolate truffles and finished with chocolate cigarettes and a pink ribbon. Yummy! 😍

Cath Kidston sale buys and floral accessories
I decided to treat myself to a few sale bargains from Cath Kidston recently, and got all these goodies for only £28.50! I got a few bits from the Hatton Rose blue floral range (ticket holder, key fob, and zip purse), the blue Provence Rose mug, Brair Rose make up case, and the Ashdown Rose cup and saucer set.

These beautiful classic suede boots are the Dannis ankle boots by Rocketdog.  I chose them in black but they also come in a gorgeous cinnamon tan colour. Ankle boots are a wardrobe staple almost all year round and I plan to continue wearing these well into spring! They're so versatile and can be worn with jeans for a casual look, or I tend to wear them with tights and a pretty dress. The heel is the perfect height for me too, so I feel like I will be getting plenty of wear from them!
Poundland beauty and homeware buysPoundland beauty and homeware buys
Poundland is literally one of my favourite shops ever.  If you're one of those people that looks down on pound shops, then take a look at all this great stuff you're missing! Everything in the photos above were bought from either Poundland or Poundworld (I'm not sure which one I prefer). The 'I love... Yummy Caramel' shower gel and body butter were from Poundworld and have an RRP of £3 each, and the Ciate London feathered manicure kits from Poundland are worth £20 (although admittedly, not worth that much). 

I also picked up a cute pink watermelon umbrella, nose pore strips, a waterproof mascara by Collection, and some gorgeous Valentine's Day crockery. The round plate with the grey hearts I picked up in Poundworld, and plates with the red rim were from Poundland. I also found the set of three mini ceramic bowls in Poundland too! Bargain!

Vintage bedroom and bedding with cushions and fairy lightsVintage bedroom and bedding with cushions
My sister bought me this adorable cat print duvet cover set for Christmas and I have to admit I am in love!  I love cats and I love floral vintage crockery, so this really is my dream bedding. Some of the cats have really creepy faces.. it's great!

A couple of weeks ago I was really excited to go to Wembley Arena to see A Day To Remember perform live. It was amazing, and it was made even better by the support acts which included New Found Glory, and my favs Neck Deep and Moose Blood. You Me At Six is next up on my gig diary, followed by Real Friends the next day, and then Slam Dunk in May! 

Saturday was a beautiful day (which I wasted in the gym at my poor attempt to be healthier) and my Dad very kindly gave my lovely little car a good clean.  The sky was blue and the sun was out so I thought it was the ideal opportunity to take a photo of my little Baby Blue and show her off. Isn't she cute!



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