Friday, 31 July 2015

Leaving Lorena!

Have any of you, ever had to say goodbye to a best friend, because they are leaving for another country?  Why am I asking this, you say?  Well, because that is sadly what I had to do the other day!  

Lorena will be leaving London in a matter of days and will be returning to her home in Madrid.  It has been amazing to have had her here for the last two years, and I know that it is going to be so hard to not see her as often as I have done!  

So I thought of a plan to have the best last day together... One for her to remember!  The plan was to meet up with her and have a huge fun packed day out in London... So that's what we did! 

Yesterday, we met along the Kings  road and the sun was shining for us!  Zara was having incredible reductions on the majority of their sale stock, which we both in turn took advantage of!  (There will definitely be a haul post coming out very soon... Don't you worry!) 

After an hour of what felt like shopping heaven, we made our way over to the Saatchi Gallery and explored the depths of modern and contemporary art!  The gallery was so good that I will definitely be returning! 

It was half past two by the time we left the gallery and with both of our stomachs rumbling, we made it our mission to find the perfect place for lunch.  I suggested that we should go to Soho, as it is one of the best places for lunch and dinner, because there is such a wide variety of food on offer... It takes me such a long time to choose where to eat!  After walking up and down the streets of Soho, we finally came to a halt at a lovely Italian called 'Va Piano'.  We gorged ourselves silly on double carbs in the form of pizza and pasta... (Naughty I know, but it was so worth it! 

We then did a little more shopping along Tottenham Court Road...  (We honestly couldn't help ourselves)... So many fantastic pieces were in every shop... How could we say no?

Towards the end of the evening, I thought that it would be a great opportunity to grab tea and cakes... To rest our tired feet from all the walking we had done!  Also Lorena had never experienced an afternoon tea before all in traditional pottery, so I knew that this was going to be worthwhile!  

I took her to BB cafe in Covent Garden and we had tea, and the most luxurious Victoria sponge I had ever seen, let alone tasted!  Many giggles and stories were shared and we parted our separate ways at Charing Cross.  

So now all I can do is wish her all the best and keep in touch whenever I can.  I know that this is not the end for our friendship, and if anything this will make us stronger.  Because when you care about someone so much, you make every effort to have them in your life! 

Have any of you got friends in other places or countries?  How do you keep in touch and if so, do you ever visit them?  Let me know in the comment section below! 

M x

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Time for a pamper!

These past two weeks have been pretty full on for me... Work has been incredibly stressful and I have been travelling to different locations which hasn't really helped my poor little feet!  I have felt rather anxious and stressed at times, and with not being able to sleep very well, I needed to find some release and just relax!  So I checked into my nearest LUSH store and decided to treat myself to some TLC in the form of anything bath related, and in my case their legendary bath bombs!  That's right I went and splurged on a bath bomb or two!  Well when in LUSH, I never leave empty handed... Never!  You kind of get hypnotised by their ingenious creations of colour and smells!  

The first one I purchased was the 'Butter Ball', which is small in shape and slightly tame in appearance.  This one sadly does not turn your bath a different colour but it does however do wonders for your skin!  Firstly it is made up of coco butter and ylang ylang... two ingredients that are used for treating stress and depression as well as relaxing the nervous system.  Once the coco butter pieces have melted, the small blue flecks of ylang ylang, (which is used in aromatherapy), gently coat and nourish the skin.  This is a great product for people with dry, sensitive or irritated skin, because it is very soothing and leaves your body feeling silky smooth! 

Now moving on to my next find, (which I promise is more colourful and full of personality)... It is none other than the 'Sex Bomb!'  I was mesmerised by the design, especially how the pink and purple shades blended together with a sort of dip dyed effect.  Just when I thought that all the detail was seen... I spotted a tiny pink rose cut out of the inside, which is not only adorable but very feminine.... Plus roses are my favourite flowers so it was obvious that this was going to be my new favourite!  Made up of Jasmine, ylang ylang and clary sage, this bath bomb will leave you feeling much happier in no time!  Jasmine not only has a fantastic aroma but is also used in aromatherapy to relieve stress and anxiety, whilst Clary sage clears the mind.  Basically, all of the ingredients which I need to get back into my usual self again!

Once dropped into my bath... It only took a matter of seconds for it to take effect.  My bath was turning into an array of colour right before my very eyes... I was utterly transfixed!  The end result was so girly... Because I finally had a pink bath all to myself!  It's safe to say, that it was very much needed! 

Finally, what really impressed me, was the underlying fact that LUSH produce products that are 100% natural and therefore refuse to test on animals.  Also, LUSH are very determined with their views that they have cleverly created a 'Charity Pot'.  This charity pot consists of an all round body lotion that does wonders for your skin, as well doing a lot of other things...  Each pot costs £1 (which seems like nothing, but if everyone buys one, it will make such a difference!)  For every pot they sell, LUSH donate 100% of the price to support organisations that align with their ethics in areas of animal welfare, human rights and conserving the environment.  So when you're next in your local LUSH store and the cashier asks you to contribute to the 'Charity Pot' - do it!  

What are you favourite LUSH products at the moment?  Let me know in the comment section below! 

M x

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

A Beautiful Mess!

I had never realised just how many iPhone cases I owned.  It's crazy, I literally have like ten and I use them as  I would with bags... To coordinate with my outfits or to make a bold statement!  So I was overjoyed to hear that one of my favourite American online companies, 'A Beautiful Mess' had designed one that was quirky and very unique!

'A Beautiful Mess' is founded by two sisters (Elsie Larson and Emma Chapman... Both whom I religiously stalk on Instagram) and they focus on creating happiness everyday through a homemade lifestyle.  Their company has its own blog (A Beautiful Mess), two published books (A Beautiful Mess Photo Idea Book and A Beautiful Mess Happy Handmade Home), two bestselling photo apps (A Beautiful Mess and Party Party), their own product line and two subscription services (Happy Mail and Messy Box).  I think that's pretty impressive... Don't you? 

Ten days ago to be precise, I purchased one of their iPhone cases the (Colour Wheel) to be exact, and I couldn't wait for it to arrive through the letter box!  It was so colourful and I really loved the cute pattern of the print.  The stripes all had different dimensions and it made the overall finish appear to be very abstract, which I adore! 

'A Beautiful Mess' are also renowned for their attention to detail, with regards to the little finishes on each item they sell.  For the iPhone case, it was the inside.  It was all black to contrast against the outside which had all the colours of the rainbow.  But also it had the words "MAKE A MESS", written on the inside, which from now on will be my daily mantra, (especially when I'm tidying my room haha!) 

The 'Colour Wheel iPhone case' is bold but also very chic at the same time and I just know that it will go perfectly with my current Michael Kors bag which is in Tan... (Here I go again with my colour coordination!)  

Extremely impressed by this product and I think it's safe to say that it was worth the wait!  If you haven't done so already, check out the website for 'A Beautiful Mess', because I'm sure you're bound to find something you'll like! 

M x


Khaki, Gold and Green!

With all of the new transitional AW15 pieces slowly being released into the stores, I was however reluctant to view the womenswear... (I was surprised, as usually that's the first thing I tend to do!)  I think it all comes down to the fact that I do not think that I have had a sufficient amount of sunshine and most importantly sunbathing days.  So therefore I am still devoted to having some sort of British Summer, before heading back into my beloved jeans and baggy jumpers!  You see, I am still living each day with the hope that it might become warmer and I have been sporting my Birkenstocks and sun dresses (even when it has poured with rain... I am that dedicated!) )  I will not give in... Not just yet! 

However, looking at jewellery can't hurt though, right?  Just a small peak, nothing more...  Well I think you can predict what happened next!  Yes, that's right, you guessed it... A small peak, turned into adopting three new season necklaces and taking them home with me!  How bad am I? 

The first necklace I purchased because, I adored the colour.  I have olive green eyes and therefore I am always drawn to the colour green as a natural reaction.  Khaki is going to be very prominent next season... And I cannot wait, because I will definitely be adding khaki into my wardrobe.  However for now... I will stick to this gorgeous necklace to add a bit of life to a plain white shirt or a basic tee. 

The second necklace I purchased was this stunning gold circle pendant.... Firstly I think that the colour is very interesting as its a mixture of gold, bronze and brown, allowing it to be very versatile.  And secondly the shape is so simplistic and yet so striking all at the same time!  I will definitely be wearing this over a high necked crew jumper to add texture! 

Lastly I bought this pastel green necklace, because the contrast of mint and gold, looks really expensive and I can wear this with the majority of my wardrobe.  I also have the most beautiful silk skirt from Jigsaw that I know will go perfectly with this necklace! 

I always find that H&M do really great quality jewellery with affordable prices.  Their collections are unique and innovative, whilst highlighting top high street standards... Really impressed by these necklaces - go and check them out! 

M x

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

The top three MAC lipsticks I swear by!

MAC lipsticks have always been such a luxury to me.  Not only do they come in several forms e.g matte, lustre, cremesheen etc, but also I always find that the colour pigment is of a good quality and lasts all day! 

When I was in Covent Garden last week, I walked into the MAC store with the off chance of obtaining a new addition to add to my already large lipstick collection. 

I found my new favourite pink shade called 'Fanfare' which is part of the cremesheen group of lipsticks, and it only took me five minutes... (Which is a record for me!)  I think that the colour is so feminine and girly, but yet also looks quite grown up.  It's the perfect colour for work as its a rose based neutral shade, but is also ideal for summer dates and parties as it looks really flattering!

I am a huge fan of the cremesheen lipsticks... So much so that all of my MAC products are of that genre.  I will always prefer a cream based lipstick over a matte based one any day, as I get dry lips very easily and therefore the cremesheen ones offer me the best moisture for my lips! 

It was a very difficult task for me to make as I love all of my MAC lipsticks, but I have managed to choose my top three shades that I swear by and continue to replace as I get through them far too quickly. 

1.  Shanghai Spice 
This is the most useful of all three as it is the best nude around.  It is of a caramel colour and looks extremely natural to the lips.  I tend to use this as my everyday lipstick for work especially, as its professional and ideal for daytime makeup. 
2.  Crosswires 
This was the first coral based lipstick I ever bought from MAC and it has served me well.  It is a pink based coral that adds just about the right amount of colour, without washing you out.  (There's nothing worse than too much of a bold lip when you're fairly pale skinned... It doesn't flatter anyone!)  I absolutely adore this lipstick and once my current one has run out, I will make it my priority to re-stock. 
3.  Fanfare 
I know that I have only just purchased this shade, but I have already felt very attached to this lipstick.  It's my new favourite colour for summer and I think it's one of the best pink lipsticks I've ever bought!

So that wraps up my top three MAC lipsticks... What is your favourite MAC lipstick?  Let me know in the comment section below! 

Happy Tuesday everyone! 

M x


Monday, 27 July 2015

Our wurst is ze best!

On Friday, my fiancé and I decided to have a day out in London... Little did we know that it was going to be pouring it down all day and that therefore we would be forced to duck into the nearest store for cover away from the rain!  All I can say is that it was a blessing in disguise! 

You see, after exiting Embankment tube station, we ran up Villiers street and decided to take shelter in one of the two Herman ze German shops in London.  We had both heard of this company before and so were thrilled that we finally had an opportunity to try the infamous German sausage! 

Herman ze German started back in 2008 and having catered for countless festivals in their trailer, they now have two stores in London (one in Charing Cross and the other in Soho).  The stores convey such a passion for German cuisine with their finest quality sausages and great tasting sauces that accompany them!

After realising that we were both being indecisive as to what to choose to eat, we decided to ask the waiter to choose for us.... (It took the pressure off and they knew way more about the food than we did!)  

When our food arrived at our table it looked so delicious... (I couldn't wait to get stuck in!)  We received two Bratwurst's which were pork and veal hotdogs and asked for melted cheddar cheese and crispy onions as our toppings!  I had never tasted veal before, but it works really well with the pork, and it makes the sausage softer in taste.  I'm usually a fan of sweated onions when eating burgers and hotdogs, but I really liked the crispy fried onion, as it added a nice crunch and texture to the food!

At the end of the meal, both of us were wishing that we had brought hand wipes with us, as eating hotdogs is a messy task.  But, to our surprise Herman ze German had yet again thought ahead, and there was a sink with hand wash fitted to the wall... Genius! 

I really think that Herman ze German is a fantastic place for lunch or a quick snack because the food is wonderful and the shop vibe is super casual, which to me is what I want when I'm in the mood for comfort food!  

Which restaurants have you been to lately? 

M x 

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Pretty in Pink!

Pink!  How does one define the colour pink?  Well...

"Pink is a pale red colour that takes its name from the flowers called 'Pinks', which are members of the genus 'Dianthus' e.g. Rose pink, petal pink, cherry blossom pink etc.  It was first used in the 17th century as a colour name.  It is associated with emotions such as love, beauty, romance and femininity and nowadays some see it as portraying  extravagance and a wish to be noticed."

This season the colour pink has been a prominent fixture throughout the top designer collections.  With Dior, Miu Miu, Prada and Christopher Kane being some of the big names that have contributed to this sudden Pink movement, I thought that it was about time to incorporate this gorgeous shade back into my wardrobe after what feels like a very long time!

Having scrolled through the high street to find the perfect pink purchase, I was sadly having no luck... that was until I found myself in Dune and all my worries were wiped away!  Right in front of me lay a pair of exquisitely made stilettos... That had my name on them!  

Where to start?  First of all, the gold detailing on the shoe is what first attracted me.  I liked how it had a slight rose gold tinge to the metal, softening the overall look.  Also, the gold outlining was very subtle, as each metal piece whether it was inside the shoe or outside of it was very thin and elegant... especially the exposed seam at the back of the heel, I loved that element to the design! 

The second thing that caught my eye was the colour.  It is the perfect combination of Pink and Salmon pink... making it more of an updated nude shade suitable for anyone's wardrobe.  The fact that it has a little more depth of colour, will result in it being the perfect versatile colour for styling outfits!  And also will give any tired look more personality as the colour is not what you would call your everyday pink! 

Lastly, in my opinion Dune make some of the best court shoes, due to the fact that they usually have the softest leather inside.  Whenever I'm buying shoes... I always have to feel the texture of the sole, because there is nothing worse than buying a pair of shoes that have no heel support whatsoever and end up being frankly uncomfortable!  (Fashion isn't pain people... I have learnt that the hard way!)  But these shoes have the softest leather and a very cushioned sole, which is ideal for a heel this high. 

Without any hesitation I purchased them and could picture all the outfits in my wardrobe to team them up with.  As I left the store, I walked past the matching clutch bag that goes with the shoes... How cute is that?  I smiled and thought, "maybe next time!" 

What is your favourite pink item to wear at the moment?  Let me know and message me in the comment  section below! 

M x


Thursday, 23 July 2015

Mad about plaits!

For any of you who know me, you will know that I hardly ever tie my hair up... (For those of you who don't, I don't know what it is, but for some reason I prefer to have my long locks flowing around my face freely!  I'm usually a little lazy when it comes to styling my hair and I'm renowned for the 'hair down' or 'placed over one side' kind of look.  I guess it's just a comfort thing.  (Basically I have really long hair and never really know what to do with it!)  

This all changed however, when I decided to search through YouTube in the vein hope of discovering quick and easy hairstyles that look effortless.  There was everything from curls, to fancy ponytails, bow hairstyles and buns, but the craze that attracted me was... braids, or plaits as I like to call them! 

I had never known that there were various combinations out there other than the basic 'three strand braid', and more importantly braided creations that could inspire the girls who usually like to 'wash and go', (which I too am guilty of!) 

Here are my top 4 plaits that I like to do on a daily basis when I need a quick hair fix! 

1.  (Standard 3 strand braid fanned out)  

I will always love this classic but I find that if you carefully fan out the plait.... It looks less harsh and much softer for the face!

2.  (Fishtail braid)  

This one took some getting used to but after a few tries... I can achieve it quite quickly.  I also like to fan out the plait to make it more effortless, because messiness is preferred nowadays. 

3.  (My own braid - yes that's right I made it myself, which I'm very proud of and have named it 'the duck and dive' plait!)

4.  (Hair band braid). 

I really like this one as it adds volume to loose hair and makes your overall appearance seem smarter! 

I thoroughly recommend that you all should browse the Internet for inspiration when it comes to your hair, because it is so worthwhile and it is amazing what you will find!  The other day I was given a book called, 'braids, buns and twists' by Christina Butcher, which is filled to the brim with incredible and quirky looks... I cannot wait to get started on that!  I am slowly but surely getting more confident with my hair and I must say that once you start being creative, you just can't stop! 


Wednesday, 22 July 2015

La Tasca... Our first Tapas together!

At the weekend, Perry (my fiancé)  treated me to a wonderful meal in Kingston Upon Thames... (I've got to hand it to him... the boy did well!)  It was totally unexpected and so romantic - which made it all the more memorable!

He took me to 'La Tasca', which is a Spanish tapas bar and restaurant.  They specialise in small dishes of tapas, and advise you to get 6 dishes between two of you.  It sounds like a very little amount of food... But once you start eating, you get full very quickly!  So the portion sizes are perfect! 

With Perry and I both being such food lovers, we were in our element when the menus were handed to us!  There was literally so much choice on offer and it took us a good quarter of an hour to figure out what the verdict would be (that's a sign of a good restaurant, because usually we order straight away!) 

Once the food arrived, we both stared at each other with expressions that read, "this food looks so good - what dish should we try first?"

  The dishes we chose in the end were:

1.  Slow cooked Pork cheeks with pedro ximenez (served with fries) 
2.  Chorizo and morcilla (simply sautéed on the plancha with black pudding, peppers and onions) 
3.  Pascado blanco Frito (deep fried white fish in a special recipe San Miguel batter) 
4.  Croquetas de espinacas (hand crumbed croquettes filled with goats cheese, spinach and béchamel sauce)
5.  Costillas de cerdo (la tascas famous baby back ribs glazed with a Spanish style bbq sauce) 
6.  Calamares (crispy squid sprinkled with sea salt) 

Each dish was carefully and cleverly assembled to create the most delicious and authentic Spanish cuisine I have ever tasted!  

Because the food was seasoned so well, I didn't want to drink anything too strong that would mask the flavours I was tasting at the time, so instead of drinking alcohol, I opted for a Spanish Apple Juice by 'Frobishers' which was incredibly fresh and satisfying!  

I was also impressed by the overall decor of the restaurant, as there were colourful tiles along the walls, bright orange lamp shades, blue and orange  hand painted plates and ceiling fans... All things that you would expect to see in a Spanish tavern. 

 It was nice to see some traditional aspects of Spanish culture in the restaurant and for a short time I really felt like we had escaped from London and walked into a Spanish paradise! 

We will definitely pop back again, if we are ever in the area, because we are still visualising the food to this day! 

M x
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