Monday, 23 September 2013

Remember when... we met Ben Howard

Earlier this year (I wanna say May time?) me and Michael went to see Ben Howard in Blackpool, and ended up having a little chat with him (about Brudenell Social Club in Leeds) outside of the venue. He was lovely and we were massively starstruck after being fans of both the album and the EP for a long time. (Though we didn't let it show obviously!)

Jealous? ;)

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

24hr Tattoo Eye Colour in Pink Gold

I know they've been hyped about for a while but I finally got round to trying out this little beaut, whilst on a little jaunt around boots. I thought the colour was pretty, swatched it, liked it but my conscience and some willpower kicked in to say 'No I don't need this.'

...however, after getting home and going about with my life, I realized by swatch still hadn't wiped off. This tattoo effect staying power out lasted my own willpower, so on my next visit into Boots I headed straight for the Maybelline isle and picked it up. The price is very reasonably at £4.99 so it wasn't too much of a struggle on my post-uni purse (conscience, is resting easy).

Maybelline Colour Tattoo Gel Cream Eyeshadow

Swatched in natural day light.

I'm not overly one for eyeshadow, I think it still reminds me of bad school disco makeup and I really struggle to stray from the cat eye flick that I have been applying for at least 7 years (seriously). I thought this would be nice for a summer day time look, I like it as the payoff as it's quite dewy and gives a hint of warmth to my eyes. I've worn it here with my traditional liquid liner but I think it would like nice simply on it's own with a slick of mascara. Need to work up the courage to ditch the cat flick first though!

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Not My Type

In the wake of my Fine Art degree I'm trying to find new avenues to fuel my creative urges. Because my course was so conceptual, a lot of the things I'm drawn to are back to my old craftier/illustration roots.

So I started drawing again and in order to find some inspiration I responded to a songwriter who was looking for someone to illustrate his titles, his first one being 'Not my type'.

We haven't gotten round to doing another title as of yet, but it's a start, and something to keep my creative juices (ew) ticking over. As well as this I have been starting to make resin jewelry, but I'm unsure how successful they are yet, resin is very temperamental (and expensive) as I found out from working with it this year. So, we shall see..

Thursday, 20 June 2013

Begendings and the What Nexts?

Opening Night at Leeds Degree Show 2013

If you haven't heard blogger Ze Frank talk about 'begendings' then you would probably be a little confused by the title.

The begendings, and what I'm currently facing with my time at Uni is, as you have probably guessed, the beginning of the end. That moment when walking the same route that you have done a million times for the past three years, you suddenly become aware that there is a limited amount of times left that you will have to. I find myself walking through campus staring up at the big old beautiful buildings as if in a cliched movie, in complete naive surprise that I hadn't noticed how impressive they were and how lucky I was to be part of such a good University. I kind of like that feeling, the hazy joy of 'I enjoyed this chapter of my life.' But then the What Next sets in. It is the question on every to be graduates lips, and what we constantly ask each other warily ' what are you doing next year?' and the panic of not quite knowing what to reply. All my plans are a little up in the air at the moment, with a very last minute PGCE interview for Birmingham next month and the possibility of living at home or in Leeds, and it would be very easy to fall into panic mode.

To combat 'the fear' I've been trying to come up with strategies to keep calm and keep focus on the future, when finishing a chapter of my life.

1. Start a new job. I recently left my awful bar job for another not so awful bar job. The people are lovely and it leaves me with something to come back to in September if I choose to be in Leeds.

2. Start a new project. Or a blog! My use of resin in my work has meant that i've become really interested in resin jewellery, so I am making plans to create some resin pieces. Not only this but I've also started a collaboration with a singer/songwriter to create a drawing everyday to one of his song titles, let's hope I can keep up!

3. Plan all of the things. Book some gigs, buy festival tickets. Plan a date night with your partner, or a meal with family or friends. Go traveling! Keep your calendar busy and you'll start to fill the empty gaps that were usually jammed full of the chapter you've finished. Plan a holiday, you probably deserve/need one.

4. Don't set your expectations of yourself too high. If like me you've just finished Uni, it's really easy to feel like you desperately need to be on the path to your career now and if you're not you're a failure. WRONG you've just finished something major, you can allow for a month, six months, a year or even longer. If you've not sorted out your ideal job yet, stick with a part time one and if you can, get some experience in you're prospective field.

I feel like the biggest hypocrite ever for writing this, let's hope I can take my own advice!

Close-up of my piece 'Lists' 

 A much more exciting countdown.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

"Gatsby? What Gatsby?"

So in the midst of all the end of University stress, tearing my hair out, waking up crying, and other such madness, the ever suffering boyfriend decided he needed to drag me away from my work and take me to the cinema for a couple of hours. To see, of course, the film I feel like I have been waiting for years for, ever since it was announced. *drum roll* The Great Gatsby!

I'm not going to go into what I did and didn't like about the film, and bore you with a review, but I will say even as an avid lover of the book, I think it's a must see.

To add to my Gatsby excitement even more, I was lucky enough to win some Gatsby goodies from Literary Emporium, that I raved about.. here.  This actually happened a couple of weeks ago, but due to University Stress, I haven't been able to get round to posting about it (or anything for that matter!). It came on a day when I was having a really bad time with my work load and felt miserable, and then this delightful little package dropped through my letterbox.

Couldn't believe all my goodies! And Rio over at Literary Emporium is such a sweetie, check out her little note! My little package (beautifully wrapped, as always) included, three post cards, including my favourite quote from the book (which I'm considering as a potential new tattoo, shhh)

"So we beat on. Boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past."

A Gatsby badge, which you can just see in it's wrapping there, featuring the artwork from one of the editions of the book. And finally and most exciting the little bow-tie necklace.

The necklace is so delicately made and the prints are all flawless. I have worn the necklace loads already, usually with a little sun dress. Expect to see it in many more of my posts! (And expect to see more posts now I am officially free!)

I must have been having some crazy Gatsby related luck, because I also won some Gatsby Merchandise from The Vue Cinema at The Light in Leeds, but yet is yet to arrive from Warner Bros.
Strange because I never rarely enter competitions and then I won two at once, just goes to show that someone has to win!

I'm such a quote nerd that I love Literary Emporiums pieces, do you have a favourite literary quote?

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Homemade Nutella and Peanut Butter Pop Tarts

I made PopTarts! And ate four in one day, yes four,  and no it is not ok. I had made these to keep me in Pop Tart supply for a week during some last semester blues but they quickly disappeared.. so it's back in the gym for me next week! Anyway I'm not even going to spell out a recipe for these because they were insanely easy. In fact i'll do it in steps.

Step 1. Buy ready made short crust pastry mix and knead into a dough with water
Step 2. Roll out and cut into an even number of rectangles
Step 3. Put a blob of your favourite filling on half the rectangles, then use the other half as lids
Step 4. Glaze with egg and milk and put in the oven until brown
Step 5. Eat shamelessly until any notion of work evaporates

Ta Dah!

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Guilt Free Bubble Wrap

Measuring the childlike nature of adults. Using audience participation to create a final aesthetic based on the idea of compulsion. The urge to pop and play with bubblewrap prevails even through age, and ignites a childlike response to a mundane material.

Coveting... Red Wine and Rose Gold.

So if you know me, you will know that I have a very specific colour palette of clothes. This consists of, nudes, burgundy, navy, lilac, grey. Literally anything I 'ooh' at in a shop will probably be one of these colors.

I also end up with the same kind of clothes in different color variations. That polka dot playsuit for example, I pretty much already own an extremely similar Topshop one from last year in navy. It might not sound very exciting but least I know what I like!

Anyway another thing that you would know is that I become obsessed with wanting things. Like obsessed, if I can't afford something (which is usually the case) I will just think about it and think about it, until I either cave or it passes. That's how I feel about the Michael Kors Rose Gold watch at the moment. But with my current bank balance I might just have to wait it out. Oh dear.

So this is what I'm coveting at the right now..

Thursday, 9 May 2013

My week in Instagram.

So as of late I have been very busy, what with a fundraiser to put on, two interviews for an art PGCE and a boyfriend coming home, alongside trying to create work for my degree show.

I'm nearing the end of my third and final year at Uni. And I've never been more terrified.

So. I best give you a very quick run down about what is going on here..

Saturday, 4 May 2013

NARS Tinted Moisturizer and Velvet Matte Lip Pencil

Apologies for not blogging for the longest time! A few things have been taking over my life at the moment. Namely trying to make artwork as well as put on a fundraiser towards my degree show. And seeing my long lost boyfriend who is finally home from France! So I haven't really had time to share my new make up purchase, so here it goes.

I have been desperately attempting to sort my skin out and decided the best way to do this was to lay off the heavy foundation and try out a tinted moisturizer. After a bit of research and a make over at their counter I went for NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Finland (because you know I have to go for the palest shade to go with my friendly ghost complexion). The coverage is actually pretty good for a tinted moisturizer though it does leave me a little too dewy so I tend to lightly brush a little powder over the top. It's actually not as pale as it could be considering it's the lightest shade, I actually have a slight tan (hahaha) at the moment and it matches pretty much perfectly. The girl on the counter actually said I have olive undertones which I thought was hilarious considering my paleosity, but she's probably right, I tend to tan really well when I do and rarely burn.

While I was there I also picked up the NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Bolero. Not going to lie I fell in love with the colour and even though the consistency is way to dry for me currently (thanks cold weather) and I had been warned about how much it picks up on dry skin, my stubborn nature prevailed and I bought it on the premise that I would take better care of my lips from now on! I do love matte lipsticks and the colour is really pretty but I've worn it once successfully without looking like I have lip dandruff. Nice. Anyone else tried the Velvet Lip Pencils yet?

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Mint Choc Chip Cupcakes & Recipe

I have had a bottle of Creme de Menthe lurking in my room, since the boyfriends 21st when we made After Eight shots (layer Kahlua, Creme de Menthe, and top with Baileys) I love Creme de Menthe but other than those particular shots I struggle to use it with or in anything else (though I have just had a fairly obvious brain-wave to put some in a hot chocolate). I fell in love with the bottle as well though, so it has been decorating my shelf for a while.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Very First Outfit Post... The Interview

Skull Scarf from Primark: £4
Beige Blazer from Primark: £14

So following my last post on my Primark Haul, I promised I would show you my new jacket on the day of my interview. Well I got a little bored so I decided to put all the things I was going to wear on as like a trial run, just to make sure that on Tuesday morning I wasn't dashing round like a mad thing when I realised that what I had initially planned to wear just wasn't going to work. I'd like to think other people trial their outfits and it isn't just me being mental? And so my first outfit post was born, eep. I feel pretty embarrassed actually, it feels a bit silly posting photos of my self posing. And it felt incredibly self conscious to set my camera up and vogue-ing around my bedroom on my own. But I promised, so here it is.

The photograph unfortunately doesn't show my dress up very well at all, my Mom actually bought this for me for Easter (too old for eggs now, apparently) from Next. The dress is high neck and sleeveless, body con and mid-length. What you can't see from the photo is that it's also like ribbed? ("For your pleasure." F.R.I.E.N.D.S reference anyone?) I always think of Next as a more 'mature' shop, in comparison to places like Topshop or Urban Outfitters which are usually where I end up buying my clothes, so I suppose this was kind of fitting for my first formal interview. I was actually really surprised by how many things I really did like, maybe hitting 22 has given me a new appreciation for what I deemed as a "mature: shop or maybe I just grossly under-estimated Next? I have had other interviews, though for bar jobs they tend to be quite informal, and for my Art Degree the interviewees tended to show their creative flair through their outfits (or risk being deemed normal boring?). But for this interview I needed to look a little more professional, which means I needed something to look a little older than 16 which is how young I tend to look (exaggeration, but still) so I'm thinking this might do the job.

I'm hoping I'll be able to dress this up for some formal occasions or for future job interviews. Or hopefully when I'm teaching? Fingers, toes, and all other possible appendages crossed.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Primark & TkMaxx Haul

Now as a lowly student, surviving on the very remnants of my loan (next loan is due next week, Monday to be precise) and minimum wage from a very part-time bar job, my current allowance to spend on clothes is next to nothing. So when realising I needed some new shoes and a blazer to go with the 'interview dress' for next week, the only place I could really justify was a trip to Primark (but maybe I popped into TkMaxx on the way)!

Sunday, 7 April 2013

"You can put make up on your eyebrows!?" A Brow-Zing Review

Recently me and Lily had a discussion about how much we love Benefit's Brow-Zing and that lead us to talking about how funny this video is (and Jenna Marbles in particular), specifically
 "You can put make-up on your eyebrows!?"-2.20min

Insight into the Studio

It's only recently that I've learnt how important having being in the studio is to my productivity. It's a really important part of the 'creative process' (cringe) to be involved in and around other people who you can bounce ideas off as well as having a space of your own to reflect and organise your thoughts. 

As a request from the ever brilliant Emma of Fin De L'Histoire (a life/art/study abroad blog) I am going to give you a sneaky peek at what is going on in my little section of the studio. Not because the work is particularly secretive, but because I'm not about to bore you with a full on post on my practice.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Panic Posting

So in lieu of coming back to Leeds I kinda went into panic mode. And by panic mode I mean thoughts like-

 'What if I can't do any work in the studio?'
 'Everyone hates the work I make anyway' 

and such madness as 

'What if I leave the house and I am attacked by a giant groups of yobs!?

(I don't particularly live in the nicest part of Leeds, some have referred to it as 'The Ghetto of Hyde Park')

and other such excuses ('But it's reeeeally cold!). Apparently I had suddenly become and elderly lady with a phobia of youths today and the outside world. I'm quite an anxious person actually and if I let these black holes envelope me I just become mega counter productive. So today I decided to finally break it and actually leave the house today.

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Harts + Crosses

So another item I gained this week was my Harts + Crosses necklace that had been delivered to my home address. I had a browse of the jewellery site under recommendations from LLYMLRS as she had worn some of their jewellery on one of her outfit posts, and I found this cross necklace on sale! I'm really 'in to' crosses, I know they have been a big fashion thing for a while but my love affair with anchors and crosses continues, regardless of fashion clich├ęs. My boyfriend has worn a cross since I've known him, not so much a religious thing, more being super indie in a band kinda thing (he'll kill me for saying that) but yeah he's worn one for years so he was obviously ahead of the trend without even knowing it.

Anyway, I had to have it. 

A Little Time Out, Confetti Nails and Apocalips

Easter Weekend at Home

Apologies for my lack of blogging, I went home to Birmingham and didn't take my camera. I had been majorly stressed with Uni and work and decided the best thing to do was to take a week out and enjoy some home comforts. Though it didn't exactly turn out that way starting with 3 hour coach journey at 7 in the morning post night-shift. Then a train from Birmingham to my home town. Then a week volunteering as a Art Teaching Assistant in a High School. Phew! Not to mention numerous evenings out with family and friends, safe to say it was more relaxing to come back to Leeds and my little house.

Anyway I found some new things while I was at home so I better get writing!

Thursday, 21 March 2013

"And in that moment I swear we were infinite"

Have you read the excellent book The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky? Or seen the film adaptation with Ezra Miller and Emma Watson? If you haven't I highly recommend you do, as I love both. Me and the abroad boyfriend always sign our cards 'I love you infinitely' (bleurgh, apologies) since I convinced him to read the book on our hols. So for my 22nd birthday one of his presents was this.

Another Holographic Nail Varnish

This nail varnish caught my eye the other week when I was looking to spend a birthday Topshop Voucher. I wanted a new nail varnish as I was getting back into this whole 'glittery' thing and I don't have many blues, sooo I settled for this sparkly number.

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Nail Varnish Haul, Barry M and Seventeen Holo

So I originally went into Boots and Superdrug on the hunt for this beautiful L'Oreal Colour Riche varnish in Confetti  after discovering it on The London Lipgloss. But it is sold out everywhere. I live in Leeds and our Boots is enormous and they even had two separate sections for the sought after polish but both were depleted. Looking for some form of scattered glitter substitute I turned my attention to Barry M. And found these.

(both £2.99 from Boots)

I Love Lush

Since I started high school I have always been a 'Wash-your-hair-every-day' kinda girl. If I don't wash it every morning I wake up with it looking kinda limp and gross. And then by the end of that second day it is like.. mega gross. It seems unbelievable when people say they wash their hair like twice a week. Well I am sick of washing and drying it everyday. It takes up a good portion of my morning and it can't be doing my hair any good. As well as this I am going to the Mumford and Sons Stopover tour (!) in July and I dread to think what my hair will be like by the 3rd day. Apparently the best way to combat greasy hair is to stop stripping its natural oils everyday, this idea claims that by washing everyday you strip the hair and the hair therefore over compensates by creating more oils. At 22 I shouldn't have this problem, so I am on a mission to break the cycle! 

W.I.P Nail Varnish

So my obsession with nail varnish is as prevalent as it ever was. Being an art student takes its toll on attempting to have nice nails, as has the stress of a 12,000 word dissertation (I am a compulsive stressed nail biter) and so the only way to combat this is to attempt to make my nails so pretty that I try and keep them looking nice.

Not only am I a nail biter but I also have incredibly soft nails, they literally bend in half without varnish so I usually coat my nails with Rimmel Nail Care: Stronger as a base before painting. And so on a cheeky visit to Urban Outfitters I picked up these.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Darphin Sensitive Skin Expert Program

As I mentioned previously my skin is just generally not very co-operative at all. It was never great, I was very acne prone in my teens and after an incident with a UV face lamp in a desperate attempt to help my acne I badly burnt my face (and my eye! Yes my eye, I know it was a pretty stupid thing to do!) It has been sensitive ever since and prone to drying out. So imagine my delight when I in addition to this suffered an allergic reaction to parabens and my poor face was a big blotchy mess. 

And then, a Glossybox landed in my lap. 

(well not technically I did order one)

Shiny New Blog

So the inspiration to create this blog is mainly due to how much other bloggers have helped me recently. Being a girl with a keen interest in make-up and fashion and blah-dee-blah I am also an avid reader of beauty blogs and constantly search out for reviews on products that I'm considering splashing out on and most frequently skin lifesavers. Yes I am cursed with delightfully sensitive skin (following a minor UV lamp trauma, but that's another story) which is also prone to outbreaks and dry areas. After finding the wonders of Darphin Sensitive Skin Programme in a Glossybox, I have now vowed to pay my dues to all those who have helped me and post my own reviews, comments and general anecdotes in one great big lovely mess (hopefully not) in blog format. I have had a few blogs in the past (The Better You Look The More You See, and A Travers La Mer which is a joint blog between my boyfriend and I) but I have been inspired by the likes of Zoella  and The London Lipgloss to start writing about things concerning beauty as well.

As well as this it comes from a severe loss of my female friends at Uni. Last year I lived with 7 girls and all but 1 went abroad. Don't get me wrong I love our little two bed house it's definitely more chilled and much cleaner, and I do have male friends, but you know their interest in girl things is understandably kinda minimum. (Cue an the recent anecdote from one of them asking if my purse was a clutch, because he was 'trying to learn these things.') So here we are, an outlet for my girly side with an eclectic mix of art, life and fashion. I hope you enjoy.

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