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Tuesday, 30 April 2013

So yesterday I had a little time spare between a job interview and work so I had a mooch in town. I ended up in TK Maxx which was a huge mistake being that I hadn't actually planned to buy anything. But as always, TX Maxx is stocking the most gorgeous edgy stuff so I couldn't resist buying these three tops. Also, I've been planning to start doing some shopping haul posts for ages now. I was going to do a video instead but my hair is looking bad today and I still haven't unpacked from my sisters house haha.

I love this black top because at the front it just looks basic but the back is completely lace. It's flirty and revealing without being too over the top and I love any tops that have an interesting back. I have a similar top in cream too and think this top would spruce up a simple outfit of just jeans and flats. 

I wasn't too sure about this top at first because it looked a bit short and my wardrobe doesn't tend to have much block colour. But once I tried it on it actually looked really nice and I thought it would be great to have some brighter coloured edgy/punk tops that aren't white or black! I can't help but think this would look amazing with a pair of skinny black jeans which is of course an excuse for me to finally purchase a pair from Topshop.

Finally I love this top because the anchor design is just too cute (but it's very scene, I know!). I like the little rhinestones on it and it's kind of short which means it'll be perfect for summer. I think it would look great with a pair of denim shorts and my converse or maybe some biker boots. It also reminds me so much of Dougie Poynter's clothing range, Saint Kidd, which I've yet been unable to afford anything from. This top can tide me over until I can!

Altogether these tops cost me less than £25 which is so cheap. I always love going into TK Maxx because they have a really cheap range of quirky tops like these and often they're one offs. If you don't buy them there and then you'll miss out, which I discovered yesterday when I was hoping to buy a top I'd seen but not bought last time I was in there! It's nice to know that they're one of a kind. These tops would be perfect for the many gigs I've got coming up this year which (so far!) include Kids In Glass Houses, The Dead Famous, Funeral For A Friend, Madina Lake and finally Bowling For Soup.

Having discovered some new gig buddies has been one of my favourite things about this year. My new years resolution has been to go to more gigs and it looks like I'm fulfilling it. So many awesome bands to see!

I also picked up some more candles after buying a cute black one a few weeks back. A bit gothic, I know, but they look lovely in my room and to be honest I didn't even know you could buy black candles.

Have you had any successful shopping hauls lately? What do you think of TK Maxx? Most of my friends seem to find it really cheap and filled with junk, but me and family love it - I've always found so many great quirky buys in there!

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Thursday, 25 April 2013

At the moment, Money Supermarket are currently doing a campaign all to do with it being the 30th anniversary of the £1 coin and are collecting tips to find 30 ways to save £1. I think its fair to say that the majority of us are a little short on money right now - with it being almost impossible to get a job - let alone a secure one you actually like - everyone is suffering in their own way. Only working part time myself means I've got to keep an extra eye on my money and often have to miss out on treating myself until I can find a full time job. However, I think in a way I'm a little bit lucky because I can be quite thrifty when I put my mind to it. Here are some tips on how you can save some money which will hopefully go a little bit further.

Image taken from Money Supermarket
01.  Budget. Yes it's boring and everyone knows to do this anyway, but it can make a huge difference. Make sure you budget every purchase or try keeping a spending diary for a month. You can then see where you're spending more money than you need to, and can decide how much money you need to put aside the following month. You'll also be able to work out how much you can save or spend on treating yourself.

02.  Open up a saving account. Just making the effort to open one will inspire you to save, but do some research into the best one to get. Some offer high interest and some make sure you can't withdraw the money ones it's put in. This is ideal for those of you that are tempted to spend savings!

03.  ...and start saving - but realistically. Let's be honest, you're not going to want to put £50 aside every week, so you're not going to do it. But there are ways to build up your saving and different methods to save without even realizing it. Try putting perhaps £1 into your savings account one day, £2 the next, £3 the day after that...and building it up bit by it. Or try just putting aside perhaps maybe 25% of your paycheck each month. If it's the same amount next month, you'll soon get used to not having it to spend and won't think twice about it.

04.  Think about alternative ways to buy new clothes or items. Bootsales and charity shops are so cheap and it's actually a lot cooler to be thrifty and shop this way these days. The bonus is that if you buy something from a charity shop, the money goes to a good cause. You can always find tons of cheap books this way as well as lots of cool clothes that are one off and can be customized. However, saying that, if you're willing to look harder you'll also find top/expensive labels for sale in charity shops too.

05.  Have a spring clean and sell anything you don't want. Ebay, Amazon and bootsales are great for items you don't use anymore. At the end of the day what's the point in them sitting at the back of your wardrobe being unused when you can earn cash for them?

06. If you're quite savvy to Ebay, you can use this to your advantage. Offer your services to other people who may not know how to use Ebay or might not have the time - it's a great alternative to earning money if you're selling your own items anyway. You could also try going to bootsales and charity shops specifically to buy good quality items cheap and then selling them for more on Ebay to make a profit.

07.  Sign up to cashback websites. If you shop online anyway, websites such as and are the perfect way to earn some cash whilst doing so. Try setting your homepage to one website so you remember, and always search on them before you buy anything. Quidco also has a fab app like Foursquare where you can earn up to 10p for checking into a shop. It's not much, but it all adds up.

08.  Try some free trials. If you're going to remember to cancel your account before 30 days are up, cashback websites often offer cashback for a trial of websites like lovefilm or credit expert websites. It's a really great way to earn money without actually spending a penny. You can also earn smaller amounts like a couple of pound for signing up to receive simcards and things like that. 

09.  Survey websites are great too if you're willing to put the time in. If you sign up for a few different ones at a time like, and, it'll all add up. Some surveys can be quite long and repetitive so perhaps set one evening aside a week to do them all, rather then every single night.

10.  Stalk twitter for different competitions. Almost every brand will run a competition every now and then and by simply retweeting a tweet, you could easily win a prize worth loads. If you don't use it, you can then sell it or save money by giving it to someone for their birthday or for Christmas. Christmas is a very expensive time of year, so maybe you could set yourself a challenge of trying to win all your gifts for this Christmas!

11.  Think of different ways to earn a little bit of money, like offering dog walking services or house sitting services. You can get a lot of money for just a little bit of work. Make a list of what you're good at, and go from there.

12.  Try and make products go further so you won't have to spend money replacing them so often. If you think a shampoo bottle is empty, try adding a bit of water in the little to get the rest out. Share one teabag between two cups of tea and things like that. The opportunities are really endless.

13.  Instead of eating lunch out every day, save money by making your own lunch at home. 

14.  Try mystery shopping - yes, it does exist! If you love going out to eat or shopping then often you can earn anything between £2.00 to £20.00 reimbursement for basically visiting a shop or a restaurant and just paying attention.

15.  Don't always go for top brands when it comes to things like food and drink. Try a shops own brand which is much cheaper, often you won't even be able to taste the difference.

Image taken from Google
16.  If you travel often, look around online and try booking train tickets in advance....or try booking an off peak ticket on the day. Tickets can be a lot cheaper in advance, but people rarely realize that if you're travelling off peak, sometimes it can be just as cheap - if not cheaper - to buy on the day. 

17.  At the end of each day or each week, empty your pockets and purse and count up all the loose change you find. You'll probably end up with a lot more than you thought - buying things like bus tickets or odd snacks from the shops will always leave you with lots of random change. And even though all the coins don't look like a lot, once you add it up you'll probably end up with at least a couple of quid. Put the change aside in a money box and within a month or two you could end up with loads of money!
If you're generally quite skint and could do with using the change for your next purchase, try just putting away bronze coins like 1ps and 2ps, and keeping 5ps, 10ps etc in your purse. You'll still end up with more than you bargained for.

18.  Search online for different deals. Lots of blogs offer posts about the best magazine freebies each month or the best deals shops are offering. There are loads of great Facebook pages that post these too.

19.  If you've got a big event coming up and want to go all out, try heading into Debenhams or somewhere similar for a makeover beforehand. This is great if you don't want to stress about rushing and it's also ideal if you don't want to pay out loads for products you're not going to use again like perhaps particularly out there shades of eyeshadow and lipstick.

20.  Going out is fun, but staying in with friends can be cheaper and a lot more fun. The options are endless because you can do so many different themes - you could have a movie night and stream films online for free instead of paying out loads just to see one film at the cinema, or have a dinner party instead of going out for dinner.

21.  If there's a film you really want to see at the cinema, go on a Wednesday (even if you don't have an Orange Wednesday's code I'm sure a friend will offer you theirs) - you can also get 241 Pizza Express with Orange Wednesday's codes too. Some cinemas do cheap days on a Tuesday, and rather then buying cinema food, sneak your own in (but be careful - I once snuck a Subway into the cinema and dropped it all down the side of my seat - talk about bad karma...)

22.  If you're only working part time, you're most probably entitled to some benefits - aka 'going on the doll'. Although it's not the most ideal situation, if you've worked part time in the past you've paid tax so there's nothing wrong with getting a little bit of extra help now. 

23.  Sell your unwanted gold. If you sat down and rifled through ALL your jewellery, I bet you'll find some old gold necklaces or rings you don't want. 

24.  When it comes to birthdays or Christmas, making homemade presents is so much cheaper and a lovely thought. Pinterest is great to look at to get your creative juices flowing and I bet you'll love creating something with your creative side.

25.  If you're really itching to go out and treat yourself to new clothes or beauty products, why not invite your friends round and have a pamper evening? You can try new products of theirs that you don't already have, get someone else to do your nails and lots of other things too. It also beats paying loads to relax at a spa.

26.  If you're a music addict like me, always always ALWAYS pre-order bands new albums rather then paying full price for them when they're released. It costs less and you get loads of great perks. Last year when I pre-ordered The Maine's new album I got an exclusive meet and greet ticket to meet the band (including the sexy lead singer/my idol John Ohh!) and this year I got the choice of one of two awesome tops and the choice of either an iphone case or one of their famous but now finally official logo necklaces. Yes, I just had to find a way to mention my favourite band in this post, didn't I? But really, if you're itching to buy your favourite bands new album, pre-ordering almost always saves money and gets you more band merch or other awesome opportunities too.

27.  Customise old clothes for summer or to just make them more stylish. If you've got loads of old baggy t-shirts, you can easily take them in and cut off the sleeves to make them into a stylish and more fitted vest top for summer. Grab some spare lace and sew it onto your shorts for a very in fashion look, or even just 'distress' old jeans to make them look worn in and a bit edgier.

28.  Look around for freebies. Tons of websites are dedicated to finding companies that offer lots of mini samples in the hopes that you'll purchase the items in full. Obviously you don't have to, but it saves money trying them out in case you wanted to buy them originally, especially if you find you don't actually like them. Also, you can probably use enough samples to avoid having to buy full sized items for a while like shampoo, moisturiser, chewing gum etc.

29. Try new things! If you're bored of doing the same thing with your friends all the time, you can go to free try out sessions for so many different things from dance classes to rollerderby. Think of alternative ways to spend a night out too, instead of going out clubbing, try going to see a local band instead which will be much cheaper entry, much cheaper drinks and you'll also discover lots of new music.

30. this and share your tips with others! Moneysavingexpert are all about finding different ways to save one pound at the moment and if you're a blogger and have some tips to share, go ahead and post about it! Moneysavingexpert are offering £30 to bloggers that do so.

On their own, each of these tips may not look like much. But by simply practising at least a few of them regularly, you'd be surprised to find how much money you save or how much extra cash you might have to treat yourself at the end of the month! I hope this post helped and if you have any tips to share please do by commenting.

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Monday, 22 April 2013

On Monday I headed into London for the #LDNBB meet, a London based bloggers meet up that I'm sure you've all already heard about. The event was arranged by Sophia, Lisa and Sophie. I've been hearing all about the event for months so I was so excited when the day rolled around. I couldn't wait to meet Lisa and Bex again, as well as meeting new bloggers.

I almost didn't make it after catching the flu from my parents over the weekend! I woke up feeling horrible on Monday much to my dismay, but after sleeping it off for a few hours I awoke to find myself still feeling stuffy and bunged up, but thankfully with no pounding headache and not as weak. So I stocked up on paracetamol and headed into London, determined to see Lisa and Bex and attend the event. I'm so glad I did because I had a fab time!

I met everyone outside of Selfridges where I had a chat with some other lovely blogging ladies. It was all so weird seeing people you kind of sort of knew via Twitter, but you weren't 100% sure if it was them or not. Still, it was fun! The little mooch around Selfridges was kind of lost on me because I was far too skint to afford anything in there, but we all had a laugh anyway.

Then 30 of us headed onto the evening event which was being held at the She Said Beauty offices/HQ. After a slight mishap with the taxi's, we all arrived safe and sound and were ussured in to a massive room with lots going on. The first thing I noticed was the giant ping pong table! I swore I'd have a go at some point through the night. The lovely team at She Said Beauty had some yummy cupcakes and crisps out for us to munch on and also offered unlimted top ups of champagne (possibly one of my favourite parts of the night!). Also at the event were lots of fab beauty teams to pamper us!

HD Brows station
They were all very lovely and made us feel extremely pampared. I absolutely loved my Filthy Gorgeous nails and had a lovely chat with one of the ladies about how a lot of their inspiration comes from music, as do my outfits sometimes! HD Brows made my normally fair eyebrows look amazing and much more defined, and the lady told me all about how to use their kits to create this effect regularly. The Millie Mackintosh eyelashes were hands down gorgeous - there are eight different types to choose from, each named after differerent places in London which I love. I picked Portobello for an everyday look, but definitely had my eye on Shoreditch or Soho for something to wear in the evening. Finally, Illamasqua were offering us all makeovers but their amazing speckled effect eyeliner seemed to be a massive hit for the night which I just had to get done!

All in all it was a really great day. It was a lot more laid back then the blogging meet up I went to last year, as that one was more about networking and learning how to improve your blog. This meet was just an excuse for loads of lovely ladies to meet up, have a chat and a giggle and be pampered a lot! It was definitely something I'd consider as the highlights of blogging as I got to meet so many lovely people and of course the pampering and freebies were a great perk too. A massive thanks to Sophia, Lisa and Sophie for arranging such a fab and fun day - I've no doubt it was very stressful to arrange but the effort put in really showed. Also a big thank you to She Said Beauty for letting us desend havoc upon their offices/HQ for the evening, and all the awesome brands that made us look and feel very pretty.

Argh my fringe haha! Lisa, Bex and myself. Photo credit to She Said Beauty
Lisa, Bex, Charli, myself and Tanya having a bit of a pose! Photo credit goes to Tanya!

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Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Here's what I wore on Easter Sunday! Mamaw always does a big roast dinner for Easter (well, she does a roast dinner every Sunday anyway but she goes all out for Easter/Christmas/celebrations etc) so we had the whole family round. I grabbed this dress from a friend - I was putting loads of stuff on Ebay for her and she said if I spotted anything I fancied I could have it. At first I didn't think this dress was very me - and it's a 14 so it's too big for me really - but I tried it on and loved it. It's very girly and sophisticated. It isn't something I'd usually wear but I love it. I'm going to keep it back mainly for job interviews/work I think. I really love the colours and the design.

This was actually the only second time I've worn those shoes (kitten heels, I know, not very sexy!) since buying them for my brothers wedding a couple of years ago. But they went so well and my other shoes in the same colour were far too high for just dinner.

Make up was basic with excessive use of Urban Decay's 'Smog', an everlasting favourite of mine. I really must learn how to take proper photographs of my make up, especially my eye make up, because I love to experiment with different looks and colours! Any ideas anyone? 

P.S Check out the Look Of The Week tag for a mooch at some of my other 'Look Of The Week' posts or please feel free to check out/give me a few votes on my LookBook - just click the image above!

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Friday, 12 April 2013

As soon as I spotted this post on Makeup Pixies blog, I knew I had to take part. Just a little light hearted post today considering I'm still a tad hungover from a gig I went to last night ;)

What’s your favourite type of music?

It always has been and always will be rock music. I'd probably say 'soft rock' mostly or 'punk rock' but I listen to a real mix of different rock bands from Bowling For Soup who are upbeat and very humourous, to more heavy bands with a bit of screamo thrown in like Pierce The Veil or Red Jumpsuit Apparatus. I also like most other music depending on my mood like clubbing/chart music, rap music and even a bit of country lately!

What's your least favourite type of music?
Probably full on screamo. I don't mind songs that have a little screamo music or songs that are a mix between singing and screamo, in fact some of my favourite bands do this, but death metal or songs where it's just lyrics being screamed constantly is a bit too much for me. I'd say I dislike grime music a lot too BUT it's acceptable now and then on a night out to dance to.

What’s the best gig you’ve been to?
That's a tough one because I've been to so many over the years! I'd say maybe the first time I ever saw Bowling For Soup because it was my first ever rock gig so it was a real experience to me and we also got to meet them afterwards. I also saw the Towers of London once and that was actually a great gig too. When they were around they were very similar to The Sex Pistols and their gig was just really raw and out there, with the lead singer even spitting water at the crowd. But the atmosphere was beyond amazing and it was in a tiny venue so we were all tightly packed and just moving and moshing so close together - it was really good. Two other gigs I also loved were The Maine because I think since the short time since I've discovered their music they've become such a meaningul band to me, and Red Jumpsuit Apparatus because it was just a great night. They were awesome but it was also a great atmosphere, I went with great people and I got to interview them.

What albums are you listening to at the moment?

Fall Out Boy - Save Rock and Roll is on repeat at the moment (you can stream it free on their website!) and I love it. I'd completely forgotten how amazing they are and it's only now that they're back that I've realized just how much I've missed them. I've also been listening to a lot of Landon Pigg recently and The Maine, but not one of their albums in particular, just a mix of all of them.

What's your favourite bands/artists & favourite albums?

My favourite bands of all time are The Maine, Bowling For Soup, Blink 182, Good Charlotte, Plain White Ts, Fall Out Boy, The All American Rejects, Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, MC Lars, Boys Like Girls, The Downtown Fiction & Youmeatsix but the list is honestly endless.

If you could instantly know how to play any instrument, what would it be?

The guitar most definitely, though I'd also love to learn how to play the drums. My sister was taking lessons once and taught me a little on her old drum kit and I picked it up really quickly!

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Wednesday, 10 April 2013

This Sunday just gone, I was sat curled up on the sofa half heartedly leafing through the Sunday magazines, suffering from my food coma caused by Mamaw's roast dinner. I picked up Fabulous magazine and found the article 'Do You Need Techno Rehab?' which I not only found interesting, but pretty much found myself agreeing with.

Our current generation is so reliant on technology and being a techo addict is so common and acceptable that I actually find it weird when I discover someone doesn't have Facebook. Whereas it should be the other way around, when I meet a hot guy and he tells me he doesn't have Facebook, I immediately think he must be odd. Because everyone has Facebook. 

I've given up Facebook in the past and whilst it helped briefly when I had to concentrate on doing university work, overall it made me feel anxious about what I might be missing out on. The same goes for Twitter - if I don't check it regularly, I worry about what great opportunities I might be missing out on, being that Twitter is often used for networking these days. And don't even get me started on Instagram. In between the photos of my outfits and my food (only to brag that I can cook actually when I want to), I hate the idea of missing my rockstar crushes latest upload of er the fifth picture of the Arizona sunset in as many weeks.

Am I really missing out on that much?!

Of course I'm not. Neither of us are. But the way we've grown up, we've become too reliant on technology. The thing is, although I agree that we are far too reliant on it, at the same time I believe that it's also very necessary. I don't use social networking just to chat to friends. I use it to promote my blog, to research things and more. Without the internet, there are so many great jobs and opportunities I would have missed out on in the past. And on top of that, there's the pure basic benefits of technology like being able to contact someone easily in an emergency or keeping in touch with friends and family when you are away. The internet was a godsend whilst I was at university as it meant I could keep in touch with everyone, and using Facebook I could share photographs of what I was up to. But this also meant I didn't actually call people as much and I do admit I found myself missing the sounds of my families voices. As well as that, although my nan insists it's disgraceful how often I use my iPhone, again I usually find an excuse to call it necessary. With apps from everything to finding the nearest free public loo when you're lost to discovering the latest cinema times at the touch of a button - there's no argument against it, technology really does make life so much easier.

However, with having a phone on you 24/7 with apps for pretty much every single social networking website, it's also impossible to switch off. Gone were the days when you'd log onto your computer and check your emails during business hours, before using Facebook to see what people are up to later this evening. Now, not only can you check emails or check up on your friends on the go, you're actually informed and get notifications every time something pops up. This means even when you're eating your dinner you can hear your phone go off and read and reply to that email or tweet instantly. Of course it's useful in an emergency or when trying to arrange plans, but overall it makes it impossible to switch off and relax. Work hours almost cease to exist anymore with actual work taking place during business hours, but corresponding emails, answering to colleagues and even blogging normally continue till late hours in the evening.

So how do we switch off, without losing the benefits of technology?

I don't think the problem is that we're 'addicts' or that we should stop completely - and I don't think there's a problem with keeping your phone on you all the time either. Though the older generation complain, it is really how we were brought up and it's our lifestyle. It's easier for us to arrange plans with a friend via Facebook, and I don't think that necessarily needs to be changed or stopped completely.

I think the real issue is compromising and working out how to use technology within reason. When it effects your personal life, leaving you unable to relax after work or stopping you from seeing friends in real life as opposed to chatting up online, that's where the real differences need to be made. Perhaps not stopping completely, but just cutting down.

Since getting my iPhone last summer, I've often found it impossible to escape. Some evenings when I'm not in the mood for socialising and just want to curl up with a book, I can honestly say I sometimes find it impossible to do so. Having my phone on me means I'm constantly notified of things and the need to see what exactly is too great to ignore. Then, once I've seen the message/Tweet/email etc, I actually end up feeling guilty for not replying, even though I'm having time to myself. Of course then I do reply and whoever I'm talking to is probably feeling the same as me and goes on to reply almost immediately - before I know it within fifteen minutes I find myself unable to relax. I get irritated at the constant messages even though I know I'm continuing the conversation and often if it's emails regarding ebay issues or my blog, I then find myself stressing about those things too. It's impossible to win!

So I decided to try and change that, realizing that since I wasn't at university anymore and didn't need to rely on technology to contact people far away, I didn't really need to use technology so much. I thought of some different ways to cut down, using my laptop only for blogging or watching TV shows and using my phone less in general.

Switching off my laptop after a certain time of evening actually helped a lot. I made much more effort to complete what I needed to do in the day and felt more motivated to get it done asap so that I could relax in the evening. Once my dad gets in from work at about 7pm, I switch it off and spend the next few hours with my parents. Later in the evenings I tended to only use the laptop again to watch a TV show as opposed to any form of socialising or working, but that admittedly has slipped a little. I still use my laptop in the evenings to socialise and look at other blogs, but I no longer blog past a certain time of night and I definitely don't reply to emails. Overall, my laptop is used in the evenings usually for films or TV. Switching off the notifications on my phone would help a lot too, I know, although I haven't yet managed to do that. I'm guilty of admitting that without checking my phone often, I do feel like I'm missing out on something. I'd like to be able to switch off notifications completely therefore only seeing messages or updates when I decide to check them when I want to, but I do fear that I'd only end up checking them too often than I should. Finally, analysing exactly what I put up online has made a big difference to how much I use my laptop and my phone. Although I don't put personal details up, I have found I don't like updating Facebook too much with what I've been up to or things like that, because it takes the whole point out of conversations and catching up with friends. Now I tend to use Facebook to talk about films I want to see or general status's every now and then, but no longer do I use it to talk about what I'm up to or what I'm doing (not as much anyway). This has actually helped me go on to spend more time with people in person as opposed to catching up online, which is always a good thing.

So perhaps the real problem isn't using our phones or laptops too much, but instead struggling to draw that line between work/socialising mode to relaxing mode. Maybe if we switched off our phones and laptops just a couple of hours each day, we'd have more time to shut ourselves down for the evening and become more relaxed.

Do you think you're a techno addict? Do you prefer to chat to your friends online because it's too cold to go out and actually make proper plans? Or do you struggle to understand and keep up with Facebook/Twitter and whatever else as it is? Let me know in the comments below!

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Friday, 5 April 2013

This cold weather has got me tucked up warm in bed trawling through various different pins on pinterest. I always say winter is my favourite season - and despite always being cold, it is - but I've always had a soft spot for summer. When I was younger me and my friends used to walk up to the local Tescos and buy sandwhiches and huge bottles of cherryade before going for a walk up the downs - these huge hills that overlook all of Dunstable - and just laze out in the sun. We'd chill out at the very top before exploring the different trails at the bottom of the hills. It's my favourite summer memory alongside the many days and evenings spent in my back garden hosting BBQ's or just grabbing a picnic blanket and sunbathing in the sun. Looking through these pins has definitely got me tempted to throw a garden party/outdoor movie party this summer. I love everything about the idea - ultra comfy cushions and blankets laid out on the ground, huge rustic bowls filled with mouthwatering butter popcorn, magical tealights dotted around the garden or hanging from the trees and finally, a good movie and even better company. It sounds absolutely ideal.

I don't know what it is either but something about these pins just make me want to up and move to America for the summer, where I know for a fine fact outdoor activities like this are partcipated in on a regular basis. Oh to have a gorgeous huge garden with large looming trees obstructing the beautiful skyline.

England might not be quite on par with America when it comes to the weather, but I can promise you that as soon as we start seeing some sun, I'll be throwing some amazing outdoor parties and movie nights.

All images on this page have been taken from my Pinterest account. You can view the board here.

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Thursday, 4 April 2013

A while back I posted about how hard it is to dress for a winter wedding. When you're 85% sure it's going to rain and 100% sure it's going to be cold, when the shops are for some reason only stocking summer dresses/expensive dresses and everything you try on just isn't right, what do you do?

You turn to ebay of course!

After spending hours trawling around Luton, Milton Keynes, St Albans and even Bicester Village and even after giving in and buying one rather too revealing summer dress after being fed up of looking everywhere else, I finally found the perfect dress via ebay for only £5.

Ladies, next time you have a wedding to go to, make sure you look on ebay FIRST before everything else. And early too, so you have more than enough time for it to be delivered and tried on.

I decided on this beautiful red asymmetrical jersey dress which I thought was absolutely lovely. It's a nice colour, it's shorter at the front and longer at the back which means it's a bit different and looks interesting, and most of all it was warm and not at all skimpy!

This was having tried it on straight after it arrived so the skirt is creased - the skirt wasn't actually in this style once it had been ironed! I also forgot to get a full length picture on the day...
I paired it with a cream skinny belt and some beautiful over sized bangles. Overall, it was just the effect I was going for - it was simple but also glam enough for a wedding and at only five pound, I couldn't really complain. I wore it with a leather jacket just whilst we were outside of the venue, but despite the rainy weather, it was warm enough both inside the registry office and the reception venue that I could wear it just as it was without the jacket for most of the day.

My sister also done my hair and make up for me and I thought my hair looked absolutely stunning - I had it up in a messy side bun with plaits either side and it looked great with my fringe too.

It was a really lovely day. We don't often get to see all of the family at once so it was nice to see everyone and just celebrate my uncle finally getting married! The first few drinks at the bar were free (in fact because of the fact that I got ready at my sisters and along with her boyfriend we spent the morning drinking champagne and rocking out to Nirvana, I was tipsy quite early on...oops), the DJ played awesome music (lots of cheese music to dance to and even some Fall Out Boy for a true wedding tradition, as began by me and my sister back at my cousins wedding of '07) and the food was yummy. The bride, Ruby, looked absolutely lovely too, wearing my aunt's old vintage wedding dress!

So I think although originally we predicted vintage and lace was going to be big this year, I think another huge trend for weddings is definitely going to be 'less is more'! As you can see advertised by myself and the other ladies above (we are family! From L-R that's my cousin, my mum and aunt - who were bridesmaids - my sister and me - don't we all look lovely?!), we've all chosen simple dresses and just glammed them up with the use of accessories.

And in conclusion, here is my favourite photo of the night!

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Monday, 1 April 2013

Since growing up, I'd like to think I've become just that little bit more stylish. However the problem with having a soft spot for alternative clothing - and especially band t-shirts - is that some of it isn't always very nice. It's no surprise that I love anything that features skulls/crosses/the colour black but this sucks sometimes because it's not always very feminine or versatile, and often I find I can only usually pair these types of tops with jeans (although that normally looks quite edgy as it is!). The worst thing is band t-shirts though, especially the type that you pick up in a rush after a gig. My wardrobe is filled with band tops that I rarely get to wear.

Normally they're overpriced (if you buy from outside the venue!), and buying from a merch stand means you don't have the chance to try them on. I love lots of American bands which means confusing American sizing - the amount of tops I've bought over the years that have just ended up massive on me and therefore refined to only being worn to bed or lounging around the house is ridiculous! And as much as I hate to say it, some designs just look tacky or corny with oversized band logos or bright girly colours against a black background. Sometimes it's really hard to support your favourite band and look stylish at the same time!

I'm aware this post may be a bit hit and miss because you all may not necessary like The Maine! But that's another reason why I'm posting this - although I'm generally against the whole wearing a bands t-shirt when you're not even a fan of the band thing, I'd like to think that it is possible to find band t-shirts that are that stylish that you could wear just to look good and not just because you want to show off your favourite band - aka something you'd see in a shop and want to buy without even knowing it was band merch because it's just that cute :)

I've searched high and low for some new band merch recently and here are my favourite picks from one of my favourite bands which I think are fashionable or cute enough to wear as an outfit and not just lounging around the house like the other tops I have hidden in my wardrobe!

I absolutely adore these three tops and they are definitely my most favourite. I love the first one because it's so simple - it's ideal for summer and being a croptop, it'll look lovely with highwaisted shorts. It's named after their album, Pioneer & The Good Love, but I just really love how cute and simple it is. The second top I obviously love because it has a skull on it! I actually already own this top, I got it free with a pre order of their DVD and chose a medium, but when it arrived it was massive on me so normally I wear it just over leggings or when I'm feeling pretty slouchy. I'm thinking of ordering it in a smaller size and cutting off the sleeves to make it into a really edgy vest top, which again would go with almost anything and look a bit more rocker/grunge. The way they've got the band name on this is pretty cool too. The last top I love because it has a bit of colour in it which means it can be wore on a day to day basis as again it's pretty versatile. I love how it still has the bands name on it - between the lines of the design - but without it being too big. So many band t-shirts have the name or logo fill up the whole top and it looks overbearing or cheap but I love how they've chosen this design and still encorporated the band name. It looks great with a pair of leather shorts, as shown on the model.

Without realizing it, I've kind of chosen what looks like a bunch of men's tops here haha! These tops would be ideal for any guys who like The Maine and actually if any ladies are reading this it would be a perfect gift for your boyfriend! The tops are listed as unisex. The first one is quite on trend right now and I think it would pretty much go with anything - it would be perfect to wear to another gig. The jumper is very popular and at first I wasn't too sure about it as I have enough things will skulls on them! However I think it would be nice to wear in the winter with a pair of skinny black jeans and would keep me warm and toasty. Finally the last top has another really funky design and again I think it would look great with just a standard pair of jeans.

I think when I next get paid I'll definitely be treating myself! I also have my eye on a band bracelet and necklace which isn't offical merch of The Maine but are really cute nonetheless. There's also a really cool top that I want but unfortunately this isn't available to buy anymore and hasn't been for a good few years. I love it because it's so ironic - the story behind it is that the lead singer, John Ohh (John O'Callaghan) ran into a tree drunk and knocked out his two front teeth so had to get fake teeth instead ha!

I'd love to continue this feature - I have my eye on lots of other merch at the moment from the likes of All Time Low, Fall Out Boy and, although I know it's tecnically not a band, Dougie Poynter's St Kidd range. Keep an eye out for some similar posts to this one!

All items on this page (excluding the 'I partied way too hard with John Ohhh' shirt) are available from the bands offical merch website,
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