Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Going For Bolder Lips!

I know it seems strange but one of my resolutions, for the rest of this year and the next, is to have the confidence to wear bold lipsticks. I am generally quite a reserved person and, like many, I care way too much about what everyone else think of me-which just eats away at my confidence! And so one of the ways I thought I could make it fun to turn this around is by wearing bold coloured lips, without worrying that people think 'i'm trying too hard' or that 'i'm trying to look older'. I know it sounds silly but i love makeup and what better way to fix a problem than with something you enjoy?

TopShop  have brought out a range of beautiful lipsticks; I've especially been loving Armour. I definitely think it looks better with some lip liner beneath -I use Rimmel 047 Cappuccino-but the actual colour is really lovely. I've also been using Rimmel 01 Lasting Finish by Kate Moss which is super pretty and Berry Blush tinted lip balm-which is really pigmented-from their Keep Calm collection. I can always count on Rimmel for a great lip product!

Monday, 10 November 2014

Day Out: Poppy Field

On Sunday, my mum, dad and I took a drive down to central London to see the poppy field in the moat. I can't imagine how long it must have taken to complete but it looks absolutely beautiful-especially with the lights turned on-and is generally just a lovely way to pay our respects!

Then we went to have dinner at the Natural Kitchen which was seriously delicious! I had beetroot and ricotta tortellini with a pomegranate and feta salad and a raspberry ice tea. For dessert I had a hazelnut brownie-which was amazingly gooey-with vanilla ice cream. To be honest the service was really pants but the food was great.

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge

I had tried out my friend's beauty blender and loved it but it cost way too much for me. Instead I decided to give the Real Techniques dupe a go and I have to admit I prefer it. It's not so good for coverage but the round edge is great for a flawless base and an even complexion. The reason I prefer it to the beauty blender is the flat edge which is perfect for patting in and blending concealer. Not to mention it only costs £5.99 at Superdrug! I definitely recommend it to those on a budget.

Friday, 3 October 2014

My Favourite Healthy Recipes

For a while I have had trouble keeping my food down which has caused me a lot of stress. I was nowhere near healthy: I'd binge eat all day, have massive portions of stodgy food and after a while my body just seemed to say no. I have started making healthier snacks, juices/smoothies and joined a gym with my mum (which really helped!). Here are some of the recipes I have been enjoying:

Grilled courgette:

All you need to do is slice some courgette,
brush with olive oil and lemon and stick it on the grill!

 Peach and banana juice:
  • 1 peach (sliced, so it blends quicker)
  • 1 sliced banana
  • coconut water
  • a pinch of cinnamon

Peanut butter chocolate chip bars:

I am obsessed with peanut butter so I was
really excited when I found this recipe!

And lastly...

My favourite juice:
  • A handful of pineapple chunks
  • 1/2 Celery stalk
  • A handful of mango chunks
  • A small handful of spinach
  • 1 inch of ginger
  • Sliced banana
  • Coconut water

Sunday, 14 September 2014

The Colour Purple by Alice Walker

In a tragic sort of way, this book is simply a beautiful read. Written in Celie and Nettie's perspective through the letters they write to God and then to each other, like many books written in first person, I started to feel a bond with the main characters-especially Celie. As Celie begins to find herself and realise she can use her sewing skills to find some success, I found myself feeling proud and in awe (I admit I was teary-eyed for most of it).
 Reading about the hardships black women had to face in a racist and patriarchal society is truly shocking yet what I found most intriguing and inspiring was the character, Shug Avery who completely challenged the unspoken rules in the society she lived in. My favourite quote from Celie to her husband that treats her as if she is worthless is 'Until you do right by me, everything you touch will crumble. Everything you even dream about will fail'. I think the main reason I love this quote is that we can really see she is starting to value her life even if she has been through incredibly awful things.

Being one of my favourite books, I would have to give it a 5/5. It's thought provoking, triggers various emotions and has a beautiful underlying message.

Sunday, 7 September 2014

DIY: Cute Drawstring Laundry Bags

Last September, one of my older sisters was about to attend her first year of uni and to her dismay she'd be having to use a launderette so I thought I would make her a cute laundry bag out of left over material. The sewing machine I used at the time wasn't great and she used it often so it quickly fell apart, which meant she and my other older sister (annoyed that I never made her one) were both expecting an upgrade. They're really quick and easy to make so I thought I would take pictures along the way so you could make one too!

  1. Firstly choose two materials. For the front panels I would recommend buying about 1m and for the side panels I would say 1.25/5m-the extra is to make a base.
  2. Fold both materials in half so when you cut the panels out they are the same size. Then pin the materials together and cut out a rectangular sort of shape with curved sides.
  3. Pin the front panels to the side panels-right sides together-but don't pin the panels on either end together. 
  4. Measure a square base according to the with of the panels. Pin it to either of the middle panels-still right sides together. It should now look like this:
  5. Now just machine sew along where you have pinned it.
  6. Pin the other sides of the base to the panels and machine sew again. Then pin the end panels together and machine sew so the bag is fully joined together.
  7. Roll the top edge of the bag twice, flatten and pin it like this:

  8. Machine sew on the bottom edge making sure there is enough space to thread the drawstring through.
  9. Cut two small holes next to each other through one layer of where you have just rolled the top edge. Attach a safety pin to whatever you are using for your drawstring-I used a shoelace-and put it in one of the holes. Shift it through the rolled material until it comes to the other hole and pull it through. You can leave it like that or tie it in a bow.
  10. Finally (this part is optional) hand sew a lace trimming over where you machine sewed the rolled material so it looks like this:

My new sewing machine is from Hobbycraft-I would definitely recommend it!- http://www.hobbycraft.co.uk/brother-sewing-machine-ls14/561344-1000
The fabric and lace trimming was also from Hobbycraft.

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

The Returned by Jason Mott

Blurb: Lucille Hargrave’s son has been dead for over forty years. Now he’s standing on her doorstep, still 8 years old. Still looking for her to welcome him with open arms. This is the beginning of the Returned. This is a new world where nothing – not even death – is certain.

I had wanted to read The Returned by Jason Mott for a while so when I finally bought it I was quite excited and now that I have finished it I can only say that I have mixed views. On a good note I like the concept of having a second chance with loved ones that have died, it was well written and really thought provoking. I also like that the characters have their own little quirks but I have to be honest and say that I didn't once sympathize with any of the characters and actually found most of them irritating, especially Lucille. However, Mott did an exceptional job addressing the emotional issues between Lucille and Harold Hargrave.

Throughout reading The Returned I found myself fighting the urge to skim read chapters  until something interesting happened. I also felt as if no one was really wanted answers as to why people were returning from the dead, which seemed very unrealistic to me. There were so many questions I had that were just passed over to focus on minor details. 

Overall i would give it a 2/5 because although it is fascinating and a great character study, I found it boring and lacking of an actual story line.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

My First Post

Hey, I'm Em!
To be honest, I've been thinking about blogging for quite some time now but could never muster up the courage to actually do it. However, my sisters managed to persuade me-as always-so finally I'm writing my first blog post and I suppose I'm feeling nervous but mostly excited!

Although I am planning to post about fashion, beauty bits and just lifestyle in general, I am going to center the blog around books. I am really excited to write about my favorite authors such as George RR Martin, Ian McEwan, John Grisham, and Alice Walker. I'm also looking forward to writing about my favorite book series such as A Song Of Ice And Fire and Dexter.