Tuesday, 29 November 2016

The Ideal Home Show at Christmas


I feel like the fact that I'm writing this post somehow means I should suddenly own different wine glasses for red and white and a proper expensive cutlery set otherwise I haven't really earned the right to attend the Christmas Ideal Home Show. I went to London at the weekend with my mum and because we're such home magazine junkies we spent Saturday pottering around the show.







The show is held at the Olympia Exhibition Centre, which is actually a bit of a ball ache to get to, but is a beautiful venue. It was absolutely packed, but as long as you don't mind crowds it's fine to wander around. There were so many stalls, mainly homeware and Christmas decorations, but also some health and beauty and food stalls so it caters for everyone really.  You can even buy a hot tub if that's what takes your fancy (if only it wouldn't take up my whole back yard lols).

We weren't sure what the show would be like and I think we were both expecting there to be more display rooms to get some inspiration from, but in reality there was only a small corner set aside for those with about four rooms so we didn't get as much inspo as we'd hoped! Just look at that marble sink though...plus there were definitely enough stalls to keep us happy! We managed to spend a good four and a half hours there so that's a pretty good indication of how much there was to see!

We weren't patient enough to join the enormous queue for goody bags, but we did get a free manicure from some London College of Beauty Therapy students who were doing them for free practice so that was a nice little bonus! I could have spent so much more money than I did at the show, but I'm actually pretty restrained these days so I just bought a cute print from The Old English Company (which is basically me all over in one phrase), a candle holder (obvs), a planter (again, obvs) and a cute little gift for a friend which I won't specify because she's probably reading this!

I'm feeling incredible festive now, which is surprisingly early for me (Christmas is usually forbidden until after my birthday) but I'm so excited for next year when hopefully our house will be finished and I can go to town on Christmas decorations. Seriously, it's going to look like Christmas has thrown up inside my house next year.

Have you ever been to the Ideal Home Show?

Amy x

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Sunday, 27 November 2016

How To Spend a Weekend in Iceland


Iceland isn't really the type of place you'd think of for a weekend break, but recently I went for three days and although I'll definitely go back to explore more because we couldn''t squeeze everything in, it was 100% worth doing plus I'll be more clued up next time I go. I thought I'd put together some tips on how to do Iceland in three days, plus just a few tips for visiting Iceland in general (that I can reread myself when it comes to me going back!)


Prioritise | Decide what you want to do the most. For us that was The Blue Lagoon so we made sure we had that booked as a definite before we went and built the rest of our time around that. We would have loved to have seen the Northern Lights and the Golden Circle, but there just wasn't enough time (which is why I'm obviously just going to have to go back!) We also made sure we were staying near The Blue Lagoon seeing as that's what we wanted to do most and just explored the area around there.


Stay rural | We stayed in a wooden cabin in the middle of nowhere on a flat expanse of barren land right next to the sea (sounds grim, but it was great). It was much cheaper than staying in Reykjavik, it was super cosy and it just felt a bit more like real Iceland. I'd say only stay in Reykjavik if you're planning on getting tours from there, but there isn't actually much there, it's not as pretty and although we visited the city I wouldn't bother going there again when I go back to Iceland. It's not difficult to stay rural either seeing as the majority of Iceland is!


Hire a car | With only a short amount of time there we couldn't really do tours to places because they take up quite a bit of time, plus we thought it'd be easier to just do our own thing. We'd definitely have been lost without our car because we were staying so far out we needed it to drive pretty much anywhere. It also meant we could make random decisions about where we wanted to go - at last minute we decided to stop off on the coast on our way to The Blue Lagoon so without the car we'd definitely have seen less and would have spent a fortune on taxis!


Don't underestimate the weather | The weather is very changeable. We'd just driven through a massive hail storm before the above picture was taken and the ground was clear of snow about ten minutes earlier! I'd like to go back in the summer months because daylight wasn't very long (6 hours) and the wind was ridiculously strong which made it feel very cold. Obviously the romanticised vision of Iceland is being in the snow watching the Northern Lights, but for practicality I think it'd be better to have more daylight hours to see things and for it to be a little warmer so you actually enjoy being outside for long periods of time! It depends what you prefer!

Tips in brief:
- I'd read a lot about it being a requirement to have a naked shower before you enter The Blue Lagoon and a lot of people seemed to be worried about that. Don't worry because there are separate cubicles so it's all very private.
- I'd also read a lot about how bad The Blue Lagoon is for your hair. I did layer conditioner (provided) on before I went in, but I honestly didn't notice any bad effects at all.
- Unlike most other European countries the tap water is very clean and drinkable so you don't need to waste your money stocking up on bottled water.
- It's very expensive for things like food and drink. I don't know if it's just because of the bad exchange rate or if it's just expensive anyway, but be prepared!

Have you ever been to Iceland?

Amy x
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Friday, 25 November 2016

My Most Worn Autumn Outfits

I swear autumn is the shortest season - before you know it all the leaves are a slippery mess, it's cold AF and your heating is on full whack. Hello winter I guess. I know winter doesn't officially start until December 21st, but unofficially it basically lasts about five months. Ew. 

Anyway, there are less outfits in this post than there usually are in a seasonal most worn compilation because I've tended to switch it up quite a bit and only have a real select few outfits I've worn a lot. So I guess that makes these ones super favourites. 

Jumper - New Look (other colours here| Trench - New Look (old) | Jeans - Topshop (here| Boots - Topshop (old)

First up, THIS JUMPER <3. I love the high neck, I love the colour and I love how darn cosy it is. I've worn it so much and will continue to do so throughout winter I imagine. I've been pairing it either with these black jeans or with my blue embroidered ones which you'll be seeing very shortly...


Jeans - Topshop (here| Jumper - The Glasgow Vintage Company | Body - Next (here) | Boots - Truffle Collection (old)

I'd been wanting some embroidered jeans for a while and when I found these it was love at first sight (to the extent that you can be in love with a pair of jeans anyway). They actually go with just about anything and they're so comfortable. I've also been constantly wearing this cashmere jumper over the grey body - I adore grey at the moment and rediscovered this jumper at the back of my wardrobe. SO SOFT and it was only £10 from a vintage shop in Glasgow so it feels like the best win. 


Dress - New Look (here)

This is the last outfit I've really been wearing to death during autumn. Very stereotypically autumnal in colour I know, but it's one of my favourite colours to wear anyway and I've really started to love wrap dresses - like there are about 50 of them on my wishlist. As well as on its own I've been layering this over a long sleeved top on colder days!

Which is your favourite look? Have you had any go to outfits this autumn?

Amy x





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Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Cosy Christmas Night In Essentials


If you know me or read my blog you'll know that I'm much more of a staying in kinda gal than a party animal and the period running up to Christmas is my favourite time to have a real cosy night in - we're talking blankets, candles, hot drinks, chocolate and a stack of films and I guess I'll throw Nick's company in there for good measure. So even though I basically just gave them all away in the last sentence, here are my cosy Christmas night in essentials:


Candles | I recently went a bit candle spendy in IKEA and even bought a tray so I could make a little display on the hearth of our living room and it's the best thing I ever did. We have a real little collection of candles there now and it's the cosiest thing to just turn the light off with them all lit. So hygge.


Sofa Set Up | We have heaps of cushions on our sofa already and for the colder months we've also got a fair few blankets on there so we can get extra cosy. Our sofa pulls out into a sofa bed and I'm not gonna lie, we basically have it on the sofa bed setting all the time because there ain't nothing like both having room to put your feet up.


Films & Box Sets | A good night in for me has to involve the TV (call me uncultured if you wish), but we tend to watch box sets or films rather than the actual TV. We've been watching The Walking Dead (only up to season three right now so no spoilers please!) but for a more festive feel in the run up to Christmas I will 100% be turning to some good old Christmas films. My favourites are Harry Potter (obviously) and The Nightmare Before Christmas, which you can shop in the HMV 3D blu-ray range, which if I'm honest I didn't even know existed so if anyone wants to buy me a 3D TV for Christmas so I can binge watch The Nightmare Before Christmas in 3D that would be grand.


Food & Drink | I mean let's face it, this is the most important thing. I'm a complete herbal tea fiend so if I'm not on the wine (red for a cosy night in thanks) then it's herbal tea all the way. I am trying to cut down on snacks but they really are essential for a cosy night in aren't they? I'm a chocolate over sweets and crisps kinda gal and I mean it's kind of good for you so it's OK if I devour a full bar of Galaxy in one night right? RIGHT?

And there you have my cosy Christmas night in essentials. This will basically be my life from now until the New Year (and let's face it, probably for the whole of next year too). What's your perfect Christmas night in?

Amy x

This is a collaborative post with HMV but all cosy hygge-like feelings are my own. 


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Sunday, 20 November 2016

Iceland In Pictures

It's currently Wednesday as I'm writing this, I've just got back from Iceland and I'm sat at my computer with a green tea and a Christmas candle on feeling pretty unmotivated to actually write about Iceland because I'm tired AF, have the prospect of working 26 hours over the next two days ahead of me and I don't have any food in the house which has got me seriously wondering whether I should drive to McDonalds or not.

Anyway, I will write a proper post about Iceland, but for now here's a whole load of pictures which will probably make you want to book a flight right away.






















Have you ever been to Iceland?

Amy x
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Friday, 18 November 2016

Pleats


I've featured Tu Clothing a fair few times on my blog and I really think it's great for affordable  yet nice clothes (that you can get at the same time as doing your food shop so you may as well really...) I have a pair of pleated culottes that I lived in during the summer, but now it's a bit (OK a lot) colder I wanted a pleated midi skirt that I could wear with tights. They actually did this one in grey which was even nicer, but I went for safe black because I thought it would go with more (and not gonna lie it was a bit cheaper). 

This skirt isn't actually the most flattering on me because #shortlegproblems and it's actually a little bit big, but I quite like that because it'll mean I can tuck big jumpers into it and it means that I've been able to get this belt out of retirement (I usually have no time for belts), which I actually love and makes the skirt look a bit more interesting anyway.

The top is a really old one from Next, but it makes a reappearance in my wardrobe every year around this time because it's a lovely colour and I'm all about long sleeved tops at the moment. You may have noticed that I'm kind of living in these boots at the moment seeing as I've worn them in I don't even know how many blog posts, but they're comfy, flattering and I love them so I think that's allowed.






Top - Next (old) | Skirt - Tu (here| Belt - Topshop (old) | Boots - Truffle Collection (old)

P.S I'm currently preparing for a 15 hour shift at work for Children In Need so send me good vibes and also make sure you donate :)

Amy x

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Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Carry On Beauty


If you read my last post you'll know I'm currently in Iceland (eek) and as we're only there for a couple of days we decided to scrimp on the luggage and just take carry on bags. As well as meaning less space it obviously also means liquid limitations so I thought it'd be good to share the beauty products that both made the cut and were able to go in my hand luggage.


Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer | Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess | Benefit Gimme Brow | Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara 
I'm not one for wearing that much makeup on holiday so I wasn't worried about not taking too much. At the same time it's a girls holiday and I know there'll be pictures and I feel a little more confident with a bit of makeup. This is my four product face - I nearly went without bronzer as well, but thought I might just need the extra colour so I don't look so ghosty!


Nivea Face Wipes | Origins GinZing Eye Cream | Botanics Facial Oil 
I kept my skincare very simple - I don't usually use face wipes but they are a holiday staple for me as it saves luggage space and it's also just so much easier. Apart from those I focused on keeping my skin hydrated because of the cold weather and packed my facial oil instead of a moisturiser so I can slather that on overnight!


Palmer's Coconut Conditioning Shampoo | Lush Jungle Solid Conditioner | Treaclemoon Honey Shower gel
For a couple of days I wouldn't usually be planning on washing my hair, but as we're going to the Blue Lagoon I know I'll want to as the water is supposedly very drying for your hair. Luckily I had this free sample of shampoo from a magazine, which will save so much space and also sounds lovely! I packed a solid conditioner because then I don't have to worry about decanting (I realise that word makes it sound like I'm taking wine, but how else do you describe it? I wish I was taking wine...) anything into a clear plastic bottle and for shower gel I just picked up a small one from Tesco because it was cheap! Obviously I'll also be taking deodorant but I didn't think that really warranted a mention...

And that's everything I took with me to Iceland beauty-wise. I'm a pretty light packer I think so I really didn't take that much! What would you take in your hand luggage?

Amy x

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