24 April 2014

PINK TO MAKE THE WALLS WINK

 
OK, so after yesterday's mini meltdown, I decided I'd give you a lighter post to read today. A very light one indeed.
 
I'm always on Pinterest (sometimes late into the night), pinning interior posts of what I'd like my dream house to look like. When I went through my Home Sweet Home board, it became pretty apparent I loved a pink wall - or four.
 
I'm not a super girly girl, but I do love a nice shade of pastel pink, with white, lilac, grey, and other subtle tones added as accent colours. I definitely think my next place might have to have pink somewhere in it, and I love the idea of a candy floss living room, especially with white framed Vogue covers on the wall.
 
Are you a fan of this shade? Would it be something you'd choose for your house?
 
Images courtesy of Pinterest

23 April 2014

WHEN THERE'S NO-ONE ELSE TO HOLD THE CAMERA


I wrote the title above about six times, trying to figure out what was the best way to sum up this post I'm about to write. I went with song lyrics, catchphrases and one-worders, before ending up with the line above - which pretty much sums up my life perfectly. 

As you'll know I moved to London last year, something I've wanted to do since I left art college way back when. So ten years later, as you do, I upped and left. The city I left behind was Leeds. The people I left behind were amazing. But I thought I should be somewhere better than Leeds. There I said it. I thought I should be in London and that was the only way my career was going to progress. I imagined all the amazing things I'd be doing, all the blog-worthy things I'd capture, all the great people I'd meet. I went on, and on, and on.

Here I am six months in and I'm lonely. Really lonely actually. I used to work in a laughter-filled office, with some bonkers, crazy, weird and wonderful people. There's nothing really particularly wrong with my office now, it's just so different to one I've come from. No-one really speaks, so you can go pretty much all day without really having a decent conversation. Then I come home to a house which I don't really like living in, which I share with four other people. I can then go all evening without having a decent conversation too. For a girl who likes to talk, to hardly speak to anyone all day, and then all night, is tough.

If you judged me by my Instagram feed, you'd imagine I'm having a great time. And some times I am. I take lots of nice photographs of the things I get up to on a weekend. I make sure I visit all the parts of London I want to see. But there are never any pictures of me. And that's because there's no one else to hold the camera. I do everything alone.

I don't expect a pity party. I'm not writing this so people feel sorry for me. Quite the opposite. I feel embarrassed putting into words that I made a mistake, after all the ranting I did. London this, London that. I should have kept my mouth shut, but I was so excited at the time. I underestimated how hard I'd find it and for that reason, I'm incredibly disappointed in myself.

This isn't just homesickness which goes after a while. This is all-consuming all-I-think-about-missing-Leeds-sickness. I miss the humour. I miss the kindness. I miss the banter. I miss the prices of drinks. I miss being ten minutes away from anywhere. I miss the quiet shops. I miss the buskers. I miss the market. I miss the back streets I'm yet to discover. But most of all I miss the people. I haven't belly-laughed, you know that deep laugh which makes your eyes water, since I've been here and I'm usually the girl who's always laughing. I have one really amazing friend down here, Jess, but a girl can't rely on one other human-bean to make life happy, and we very rarely see each other as it is. I also have Tabs who I can chat all things blogging with but life gets in the way, and I don't want to feel like I am.

I thought I wanted this amazing career and blog, when in fact if I open my eyes wide enough, I can see I already do. I thought I wanted a cool little house by the river, when in fact I'd settle for a two-up, two-down near my mum and dad, close enough for me pop in for Sunday dinner. I thought I wanted to meet all these brilliant people, when in fact I've already met all the brilliant people I need in my life. I thought I wanted to go find the piece of the puzzle I thought was missing.

But it turns out I had everything I needed already.

20 April 2014

SUNDAY SUPPLEMENT #2


Cooking: I've done so little actual cooking this week, apart from a minimal amount of help I gave my sister last night when she made a Mexican extravaganza. Nachos, rice and enchiladas followed by a 'traditional' Mexican strawberry and lime cider and a chocolate egg. Yum. 

Drinking: Strawberry Pimms with two of my favourite people on Friday in Manchester. Raquel and Amanda are two of my friends from work and it's very easy to sit in comfortable silence with these two, not that we ever do mind. We sat for seven hours on Friday in one spot under the sun at a place called Dukes72 or something, which was heaven. I've never really liked Manchester. Until then.

Reading: I'm trying to get through all my subscription magazines, but I have my ELLE since October last year still waiting to be finished so there's little hope for this month's Marie Claire. I have brought  four of them back to my parents house for Easter in the hope that I can sit down today after blogging and actually read without getting distracted.

Wanting: An obscene amount of dresses on ASOS. I actually put together my wishlist, which I think I'll blog about later this week, which came to the grand sum of £759.00. Obviously, I haven't got that sort of money so I put most things back until I got the figure £32. That I can afford. 

Looking: At houses to rent in Leeds. So for example, not that I have this money you must understand, but for £1200 a month I could get a small studio in Battersea. In Leeds I could get a five bedroom detached house with garage and garden. Not that I didn't expect London to be expensive, but what I didn't also expect is how much I would appreciate my own space instead of sharing with strangers.

Playing: Dress-up in most of the shops in Leeds yesterday. It's so nice to shop somewhere other than the unbelievably busy Oxford Street, and the Topshop here is just as good. I also came across so many nice bits in Miss Selfridge - spot the tea dress and necklace above, both bought in the sale for under £30. 

Wasting: Too much energy worrying about the future and not enjoying the now. I'm a typical Libran and weigh up the pro's and con's to pretty much everything. Sometimes I wish I could just let go and see what happens.

Wishing: I had enough money to be able to start my own business and work for myself. It will happen someday, just not now. I really, really want to open my own homeware, stationary and gift website and there are plans in motion, I suppose I'm just too impatient. 

Enjoying: Being back at home with my family. We go on holiday at the end of May to the New Forest on the south coast of England and I can't wait. I'll definitely get lots of snaps as it's somewhere which is absolutely beautiful yet not many people I know, know about.

Liking: The fact that I now have a slightly bigger chest thanks to all the pies I've been eating. Yes, I may be a slightly chubbier version of my former self, as mentioned in last weeks Sunday Supplement, but for a girl who has never had breasts to suddenly have something almost apple size is something to be joyous about.

Wondering: If I should just take the plunge and join one of the many dating sites everyone thinks I should. In London there isn't really a stigma attached to online dating but where I live there is still a bit of a taboo subject. I just don't know if I can deal with a series of first dates when they could look so much different from their picture or we have nothing in common. At least when you meet someone out, you know what they look like and you also know they're quite normal-ish. With online dating you do not.

Loving: All the antiques my dad has given/sold to me over the past couple of months. I have so many bits mounting up for when I finally get my own place, which now includes a silver Art Deco serving tray which I'm going to put on my (future) coffee table with some books and a vase of peonies on top.

Hoping: That I find a dress soon for my best friends wedding in August. I know I have like three months yet but I like to be prepared. I'm also going to a ball in May which is exciting, so I'll also need a dress for that. Too many occasions, not enough dresses.

Marvelling: At how there are so many little local independents where I live. I really want to stop shopping in the supermarket and only shop in independents but I also know that I will waste so much fruit, veg and fresh stuff just by simply not eating it in time. But I'm going to make an effort from next weekend (when the market by my house is on) to buy there, and there only, for one week and see how much money I save.

Needing: To start focusing on the blessings I have and not on how things are not working in my favour. Sometimes it's very easy to get sucked into a black hole of homesickness etc but when I actually look at the bigger picture I'm so fortunate, and actually I am quite brave for moving to London in the first place, knowing very few people, living with strangers and working in an office VERY different to one I came from. Go me.

Smelling: The smells of summer. Cut grass, BBQ's, just the smell of summer in the air makes me happy. It might sound weird reading this, but I can definitely smell the change in season. Once you leave your house on a morning, there is sometimes the smell of summer all around. I'll shut up now.

Wearing: Anything low cut to show off my new-grown breasticles. 

Following: Some new Instagram accounts which are designed to inspired you if you're following the Weight Watchers plan like me. I love to see before and after pictures of people's weight loss journey and Instagram has loads of these.

Noticing: How happy my Facebook timeline was on Good Friday. The mix of time off work, sunshine and I suspect a lot of alcohol, meant my timeline was filled with happy statuses and pictures. It made a refreshing change.

Feeling: Really happy to be back in Leeds but also looking forward to getting back and getting on with my May issue at work. It's actually a really cool issue to focus on as it's all about e-commerce, which is really useful for me when I start my own website.

Bookmarking: An amazing new interiors blog called Dustjacket Attic, which is basically no words, just amazing images. Definitely one to inspire.

Giggling: With my sister and brother-in-law last night. It's basically like comedy central yesterday with David Walliams on BGT, Live at the Apollo and then Lee Evans to finish the night off.

All in all, a busy but good week. Nothing major to report and no life-changing decisions made. Enjoy the rest of your Easter Sunday lovelies and I'll be back tomorrow - filled to the brim of chocolate I imagine.

14 April 2014

DIY: CREATE YOUR OWN JEWELLED PHONE CASE


Can you tell I had time to kill this weekend? I decided to go on the hunt for some jewels to pimp up my phone because every time I've been out and about looking for a phone case I either can't find one for a Samsung S4, or they're just too dam expensive. 

I already have a white removable back on my phone so I decided to add some jewels and make a Skinnydip lookalike. If you haven't spotted Skinnydip cases on blogs recently, then where the hell have you been. Bloggers now have the power to make or break a brand, and Skinnydip have been lucky enough to fall into the 'make' category. 

So even though I find the customer service in John Lewis Oxford Street absolutely rubbish - as I also do in Clapham Junction TK Maxx and Debenhams - I headed upstairs to the haberdashery department to see what they had in terms of bling. I came across these cute green and clear/silver sew on gems at £2.50 and £3.00 for an assorted pack, while the superglue was £3.49. 

I'm sorry this is my second super-basic DIY post but I'm only learning myself on how to do these things, so again thought it might be nice to inspire any crafty novices along the way. 

All you have to do is find a covered surface in a well-lit area. Lay out all your jewels and plan how you want the pattern to look before you even open the glue. Then, piece by piece, glue everything to the surface. All though a random pattern can look good, I'm all about symmetry and things matching so I worked around a line of green gems down the centre and added bits from there. This all together cost less than £10 and took 20 minutes max - I did, however, glue my fingers together more times than acceptable so watch out as the smaller bits get fiddly. 


What do you think to my craft post's of late? Would you like to see more? I'm always inspired by blogs such as A Pair, A Spare and A Beautiful Mess so I'll see if there is anything on there I can turn my hand to next weekend. Have a great week lovelies.

13 April 2014

SUNDAY SUPPLEMENT #1

One thing I wanted to do this year in terms of blogging was to get more regular features up on certain days. I like the fact that on a Saturday, for instance, I know I can log on to Cocosteaparty and see the top news from that week, or that I can check out Cupcakes and Cashmere and see her Five Things on a Friday. So I decided that on Sunday's I would carry on this tag I did on Boxing Day last year, giving you an insight (if you're actually interested) into what I'm cooking, drinking, reading etc over the past week. So here goes, enjoy lovelies.


Cooking: I'm definitely trying to cook more meals from fresh and I now make a mean Chinese chicken noodle soup, which I ate twice last week. One, because it's super easy and two, I'm skint. Gordon Ramsey eat your heart out.

Drinking: Too much Red Bull. I have a can everyday and I'm going to try and make a conscious effort this week to stay away from the stuff. I have an addictive personality so I'll have to find something to take its place.

Reading: Blogging Your Way To The Front Row by Yuli Ziv - not because I actually want to do that, but because it has some really good advice on how to push your blog that little bit further.

Wanting: A beautiful dress I saw in Warehouse and tried on today - here it is on Instagram and above if you didn't spot it earlier. It's £80 and even though to some people that isn't a lot, when you're choosing either food or clothing, I kinda got to go with being fed.

Looking: Like a slightly chubbier version of the girl I used to be. I literally cannot stop eating. I wish I was addicted to carrot sticks, but it's always the carrot cake which gets me.

Playing: Anything by Sam Smith this week. His album sounds immense and I've tried numerous times to get tickets when he plays at the Roundhouse in Camden later this month but no joy. Hurray up May so I can buy his album but in the meantime I've got Latch, acoustic, on repeat.

Wasting: Too much time procrastinating on starting my own business properly, when I should actually just start doing it. I want to turn Apartment No.4 into a homeware, gift and stationery website and I have the logo already sorted, I just need to build the website ready for buying season in September.   

Wishing: I could afford a one bed flat in Battersea somewhere. I went past some beautiful flats by the park today and just thought I'd have a look at prices as I was curious whether they would be affordable. £720. A WEEK. Maybe I'll stick to a 5 bed house.

Enjoying: Feeling the sun on my skin once more. I'm not saying that I suffer from SAD (seasonal affective disorder), but I definitely feel happier, like more people do, when the suns out. 

Liking: How my blog looks now I've made the final tweaks earlier this week, bringing some adverts in and creating, what I now hope is, a hub of cooking, interiors and beauty as well as fashion.

Wondering: If I should get a tattoo. I'd love a little love heart just to the side and just under my left breasticle, or on the side of my wrist like Rosie Huntington-Whiteley.

Loving: The new design blogs I've found this week, Bright Bazaar and Design Seeds. Both full of colour and both full of inspiration.

Hoping: That I can summon up the motivation to go to the gym this week, although I am only in London Tuesday and Wednesday before I go home for Easter. Here's hoping for a miracle on those two days huh?

Marvelling: At my new found craft skills. Have you seen my bicycle print DIY? Wait until tomorrow when I show you how to pimp up your phone case. Neil Buchanan would be ever so proud.

Needing: To save money instead of spending it. I now pay a pension, have a credit card and an overdraft. All three of which I didn't have last year. So instead of spending money - money which isn't mine in the first place - I'm going to make an effort this week to only buy what I need, and not what I want.

Smelling: The beautiful daffodils which I bought yesterday. I got two huge bunches for less than £2 and they look gorgeous in a white vase under my skylight.

Wearing: My brand new dress from Oasis, which I wanted when it was £38 but decided against, then found it in the sale for a mere £10 in my size. That's fate if ever I've seen it.

Following: A whole host of new people on Twitter, after deciding to interact with the blogging community more, instead of watching from the sidelines.

Noticing: How much better my day is if I start off in a positive mood. I'm currently on Day 84 of #100HappyDays and it's been such a great thing to do, to stop and notice moments which make me happy, which I'd have otherwise forgotten about.

Knowing: That I'm seeing my best friends this weekend coming as I'm going home to Leeds for Easter. Knowing that we'll drink wine and eat good food. Knowing that I'll probably be happier than I have been for a little while. 

Thinking: About boys. A lot. I'm not sure if it's the weather but I seem to fancy pretty much all males at the moment. And if they smell nice, well, I'm gone. 

Feeling: Pretty content with the past week. I've had a great weekend, albeit with me myself and I, but I've managed to get organised, sort some life bits out which have been on my list and generally just plod along with no major hiccups.

Bookmarking: May 1st in my diary as I was invited to the Houses of Parliament earlier this week for a Graduate Fashion Week event which I'm really excited about. 

Opening: The pages of a fresh, clean notebook to make lists. Lists of things to do, to eat, to buy. These list s are endless.

Giggling: At the little old lady dancer on Britain's Got Talent last night. If I'm anything like her when I'm 79, then I'll be very happy.

Hope you've had a great week, and I hope you liked the first of my Sunday Supplement blog posts.