Style Inspiration: The Work Colleague

In the fourth installment of my style inspiration series (find the first three here, here and here) I'm featuring my gorgeous work colleague Qendresa. Obviously she is a friend as well as a work colleague, but work is where I see her the most!






I'd say Qendresa's style is very classic and timeless while still being very on trend. She tends to wear block colours rather than prints, but she's an expert at layering and making outfits look interesting. Her clothes always exude quality - even though they're mostly from Zara she manages to make them look more expensive than that and she often wears luxurious looking fabrics (sorry for stroking your clothes so often at work Qendresa, it's because they're luxurious looking!)

Qendresa very kindly let me stalk her with my camera one lunch break and also answered some questions about her style so I'll let the pictures and her do the talking rather than me rambling on with my inept descriptive skills! I've been trying to persuade Qendresa to start a blog of her own so if you think she should then please say so in the comments so I can use them as ammo!


Where do you get your style inspiration from? Lots of thing/places/people...but I will only give you a few as we may be here a while if I rattle them all off. I get inspired by the (clichĂ© alert!) weather, my mood, a specific colour I am coveting, the occasion I’m dressing for or what I’m doing at work that day(!) and Instagram (duh!). 


Who is your biggest style inspiration? I’m trying to think of someone that will make me seem really cool but I can’t say I get inspired by those fashion icons from times gone by because, well I’m just not that cool clearly...so being honest, my sisters are my style inspiration a lot of the time because they’re effortlessly stylish. But if I was to liken my style to someone famous it would probably be Jessica Alba who has a really down-to-earth but sexy, chic and fabulous wardrobe!


What do you think of Qendresa's style? Who is your style inspiration?

Amy x

Interiors: Dressing Table

So this was the one item of furniture that was missing from our bedroom when I did our bedroom transformation post (here) because I hadn't got one yet! So I thought I'd do a quick little update about the dressing table I bought and what I have on it!


I would have loved a big dressing table, but the space it needed to fit into is really quite narrow so I was looking for something compact and neat. We actually found mine at the second hand shop at the tip (glamorous to the end) for £15.


Before





I actually loved how it looked before and loved the colour of the wood, but being a stereotypical blogger I really wanted a white dressing table, plus it would have looked out of place in our bedroom when the rest of our furniture is white! It also had a brown leather top which I wasn't quite sure what to do with!


After







Luckily the brown leather top just peeled off to reveal wood underneath and all I had to do was scrape the glue off. I sanded it down and painted it white before deciding to add the copper detailing to it at the bottom just to make it that little bit different. I also added on the drawer handle, as the original one must have come off. I bought the stool from Ikea (here) which I painted white and my mum made the padded seat out of leftover fabric from our blind. The mirror is from The Range (here), which I think looks much more expensive than it was!




I keep my everyday make up in the little drawer then my pefume, make up brushes and jewellery on the top. The two copper boxes are my favourites and were christmas presents from my mum and grandma - both are from Joy.

What do you think of my upcycled(ish) dressing table?

Amy x

Lush Cup o' Coffee Face Mask

Calling all coffee lovers - I've found the face mask of dreams.



I've been a long time fan of Lush's Mask of Magnaminty, partly because it's great but also partly because it's self-preserving so generally a bit easier to use (as in I don't have to walk to the fridge to get it). A couple of months ago while I was browsing Lush I spotted this one - Cup o' Coffee. I don't know if it's relatively new or if I've just never noticed it before, but it's also self-preserving and (here's the important part) it has coffee in it.

It smells absolutely amazing (if you like coffee anyway) and I just love wearing it for the smell - it also has cocoa in it so literally smells like a creamy mocha. The general idea is that the caffeine in the coffee granules is supposed to rejuvenate and wake up your skin and I do think I see an improvement in my skin after using this - I just look that bit healthier and less like a living zombie. As well as that it makes my skin so soft I kind of just want to sit and stroke my own face after I've used it (weirdo). I love face masks where you can see some results straightaway and this is definitely one of those.

The one downside of this mask is the mess! It is messy to take off so I usually try to do it in the shower or bath so that I can wash it off in there rather than make a mess of my sink (and whole bathroom). It's definitely worth doing despite the mess though!

Before I end this review I feel like I need to reiterate how good it smells - like I want to eat it good. Seriously guys, if you like coffee you will love this.

Have you tried this mask before? What did you think? What are your favourite face masks?

Amy x

Plant Lady

My favourite quote right now is 'plant lady is the new cat lady' (although I'd be both if I could) and it really does seem like house plants are everywhere at the moment, including in my house. I'm literally obsessed and just to prove it, I bought the t-shirt.


I couldn't resist this from Asos and I like to think the print isn't too 'in-your-face plant lady', but more 'subtle not-as-crazy-as-you-think plant lady'. It's slightly cropped because I had to get it in a small as they'd run out of every other size (and I couldn't not get it) so I wore it with my Topshop high waisted mom jeans so I didn't offend anyone with my glaringly pale tummy.





Because we were walking around London all day when these were taken I wore my reliable Topshop chelsea boots, which are just ridiculously comfortable and perfect for a day of walking. I'm so chuffed we chanced upon this spot - I'm seriously envious of you bloggers who have these amazing outfit picture backdrops on your doorsteps! I think these are probably my favourite outfit pictures to date!



What do you think of this outfit? Are you a plant lady? (weirdest question ever!)

Amy x

The Mae Deli Review





I'm a long time fan of Deliciously Ella and love cooking her recipes even though I'm not gluten/sugar/dairy free because they always make me feel like I'm being that bit healthier and kinder to my body. So as soon as I arranged to go to London last weekend I knew I had to visit The Mae Deli.

 Even though I only had the coffee and cake experience I really wanted to review the deli because it's somewhere I'd been wanting to go for so long!

So for starters, my only choice was to go on a weekend because that's when I was in London, but I would definitely advise that if you do have a choice don't go on a weekend! It was very busy, although mainly for takeaway so once I'd queued I did get a seat downstairs just fine. One downside was that it was extremely hot downstairs so it wasn't the most relaxing experience.

I didn't really mean to start the review negatively because don't get me wrong I loved this place. The staff were absolutely lovely and attentive and I basically could have eaten the whole shop. So onto the food...I had a cinnamon matcha latte and a peanut butter fudge slice. The matcha latte was by far the best I've ever had and the cinnamon just added that extra bit of sweetness - I could probably drink these hourly throughout the day if I'm honest! The peanut butter fudge slice was so amazing I can't think of a word good enough to describe it! I can't believe there was no refined sugar in it as it was so sweet and rich and actually tasted far more naughty than anything I'd usually have.

Price wise I definitely thought it was reasonable for something so specialised apart from the juice, which for some reason seemed to be much more expensive than anything else at £6.95, which I personally would not pay on a regular basis!

The interiors were lovely - fairly understated, but in a good way, with cute little touches and attention to detail. It reminded me of a beach bar with the wooden tables, cushions and pastel blues.








I would 100% visit The Mae Deli again  and I'm craving a cinnamon matcha latte just writing this post! I really wish we had somewhere like this in Hull so if you're reading Ella (which you're definitely not) I'll keep you in business if you fancy opening one here!

Have you been to The Mae Deli? Do you like Deliciously Ella recipes?

Amy x 
London, UK

10 of the Best Things to do in Hull

I was apprehensive about the title of this post because I feel like it needs to be '10 of the Best Things to do in Hull in my opinion' but that's too long and doesn't really have quite the same ring to it does it? What I'm trying to say is this is only my opinion so don't hate me if you don't like any of these things.

For coffee - Thieving Harry's Thieving Harry's does amazing coffee. There are other places in Hull that do it quite good, but if you want your coffee really really good then this is the place to go. It's situated at the end of Humber Street on the marina, which is a lovely place for a stroll too and makes for a beautiful view if you manage to get a window seat. The interiors are so unique and the building has kept some of the signs of the warehouse it used to be. Plus they have board games if that's what you're into!



For coffee stop #2 - Planet Coffee | I promise this isn't all going to be about coffee. Just had to squeeze one more in there because I couldn't not include this place. Planet Coffee is more about all the flavoured syrups, all the whipped cream and all the chocolate flakes. They do indulgent coffee and it's definitely one to try on rainy days.



For lunch - Sleepers I say for lunch, but I actually usually order from the breakfast menu at lunchtime! The eggs at Sleepers are divine and they do so many variations. Eggs aside, they do have a nice lunch menu as well - flat breads with all different kinds of fillings, it's generally just alla the yum and caters for everyone. Speaking of catering for everyone, I've heard that they're very good for gluten free and coeliacs too, although I can't verify that myself. The interiors in Sleepers are seriously dreamy and a blogger's heaven as there is so much photo opportunity!



For dinner - Kardomah 94 | FYI we call it tea not dinner here, but I thought most people reading this probably call it dinner! This is a tricky one because everyone likes different types of food and there are some amazing places, but in the end I just went for my favourite. Kardomah 94 looks like a council office from the outside with the inside being nicer although still not the most amazing interior. What's amazing about this place though is the food. Like, really amazing. Think ginormous pizzas and Mediterranean style platters galore. YUM.



For cake - The English Muse | Last food related thing to do in Hull I promise (although what's better than food, really?) The English Muse is a lovely little cafĂ© and does the most amazing cake including some gluten free options. It also does the yummiest iced teas in summer too. Iced tea and cake, what more does a girl want from a city?



For a walk - Hessle Foreshore | Possibly cheating a little bit as technically Hessle isn't in Hull, but it's really not far and the loveliest place for a walk, particularly on a summer evening. There's a (roughly) two mile long path running alongside the river from Hessle to North Ferriby with stunning views of the Humber Bridge. There's an ice cream van and a pub right next to the bridge so what more could you want really?



For a rainy day - The Deep | OK so I know The Deep is probably #1 on every list of things to do in Hull and I almost didn't want to include it because of that, but there really isn't all that much else to do on a rainy day. It is pretty impressive is you're into aquariums and there's a lift at the end that goes through the tank so that's pretty darn cool.



For a sunny day - East Park | East Park is a real hidden gem in Hull quite near the centre. I imagine you could probably spend a full day there if you have kids as there's a play area, a pond, a little farm and donkey rides, but if you don't have kids it's still really nice for a wander on a sunny day especially for a walk around the lake, which is stunning.



For shopping - Newland Avenue | When I say shopping, I don't mean the chains and shopping centres you can find in every city because I mean, I think you could probably work out where the city centre in Hull is. I'm talking about if you're looking for quirky boutiques, charity shops and cheap fruit and flower shops. On Newland Avenue there are enough charity shops to keep the most eager of thrifters happy, I'd definitely recommend paying both The Moon on a Stick and The Joshua Tree a visit if you're into interiors, plus there are plenty of lovely coffee shops to keep you happy on your way!



For a cheeky beverage - Larkin's Bar | I definitely don't claim to have drunk at every bar in Hull because we all know how much of a granny I am, but out of the bars I have drunk at, Larkin's is my favourite. It has a very chilled atmosphere and often has live music outside in the summer. It specialises in craft beer so if you're looking for cocktails then this isn't the bar for you, but I can confirm the wine is fine if beer isn't your thing! They also do amaaazing burgers (demonstrated below).



 Have you ever been to Hull? Would you ever visit? Send any recommendations my way!

Amy x
Hull, UK

The Product I Didn't Know I Needed Until Lush Made it

Catchy post title eh? I couldn't really think of any other way to make the title relatively exciting (because I know it's got you all on the edge of your seats shouting 'WHICH PRODUCT? TELL ME PLEASE!') That or you've completely skipped this paragraph of ramble. 



Anyway, the product I am talking about is the Salted Coconut Hand Scrub from Lush. We scrub our faces and our bodies, but a hand scrub isn't something I'd ever come across before or thought that I needed. Cue hours of DIY later and a big bout of cold weather and my hands were a red flaky mess.

I applied so much hand cream I had constantly slippery hands, but they remained stubbornly painful and chapped. I guess I was adding more and more moisture without actually getting rid of the dry skin that was there first. It was at this point that I remembered about my forgotten (whoops) tub of hand scrub in the cupboard. Using this regularly (usually before bed every couple of days) has actually made my hands normal again. I tend to use the scrub dry on my hands before adding a little water and scrubbing again before washing it off. It really is a miracle worker for hands and it leaves them smelling amazing for ages afterwards too.

The scrub contains sea salt for exfoliation, but also coconut, argan and neroli oils that linger on your hands afterwards and make them feel super smooth and nourished. I still follow it up with the Lush Helping Hands hand cream, which is such a favourite of mine at the moment and really helps to lock in the moisture from the oils. Dream hands be mine! (Cringe, not quite sure where that phrase came from.)

So there you go, turns out I did need a hand scrub and I never knew it! Have you tried this product?

Amy x