If I was a millionaire...

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Alright, I know, money doesn't buy happiness (but it does buy pizza and gin, which is basically the same thing). But I'm pretty sure every one of you out there has had a good long daydream about what you'd do if you'd picked up a lottery ticket and the balls were ever in your favour that day. Here are some of the things I'd do if I found myself a multi-millionaire...

Buy my own city flat
Okay, so buying a house/flat is a pretty obvious first thought. But it's sensible and that, seeing as I'm kind of an adult nowadays. Some might long for a spacious mansion in the countryside, but at the moment that'd be way too big for little old me to potter around in, so I'd opt for a fancy central London flat with amazing views and a roof terrace/balcony. I really like living in the centre of a city, and I'd love to live in Angel, as it's the area I've spent most of my time in since I moved to London. After researching for this post on PrimeLocation, I just need £1.5mil to be admiring the canalside views from this stunning place...anyone feeling generous?

Volunteer & Give
If I was in the situation where I could fill my swimming pool with £50 notes as chump change, chances are I wouldn't need a 9-5. But the idea of just living it up and sitting around my lovely flat would definitely get old very quickly, so I'd want to do something with my time that could help others less fortunate than myself. Volunteering, be it in a shop or using my skills to help out a worthy cause, would be on the agenda - I'd definitely spend a large amount of 'working time' giving my time to charity. I'd also give money too, and make my currently fictitious lottery win really make a difference to the lives of others.

Go on holidays. Lots of holidays
I'm pretty sure this post is going to end up being a massive cliche, but I've started it now...if I had lots of money, I'd obv spend lots of time visiting places I've always wanted to go to. My USA bucket list is huge, and then there's Asia, Australia, as well as closer to home in Europe. I'm not really much of the 'going travelling' type - I just about manage to survive with just a backpack when I'm at a festival for five days. so trekking through continents for months on end isn't really my style. I just quite like my home comforts and going back to a cosy hotel at the end of the day! 

Learn & Create
As well as spending time volunteering, I'd also love to study more, just for the sake of learning. I'd definitely look at taking on an extra degree or three, and I'd also like to create some kind of scholarship scheme for gifted students. And I'd try and learn new skills too, taking on music lessons and cookery courses. As well as that, I'd be able to put loads more time into blogging, maybe start a YouTube channel, and write more about music.

Go VIP at festivals
Although I love the campsite atmosphere at festivals, a big part of me just craves a big, cosy bed to curl up in and a warm shower where I don't have to get nudey in front of tens of other festival goers. If I had megabucks, I'd opt for a VIP option like podpads/tipis/huts - still on site so we wouldn't have to trek back and forth from a hotel, but a bit more comfy and fancypants. If I'd really hit big on the EuroMillions jackpot, I'd even buy out loads of them for all my friends, so we have the usual camp fun, but with much more luxury than we're usually accustomed to!

Treat myself and my favourite people
Obviously, shopping would definitely happen, but I couldn't see myself suddenly rocking up to my volunteer work/course in Dolce and Gucci. I'd have the odd spree, sure, but it'd more likely be Topshop and Urban Outfitters. And I'd love to be able to buy thoughtful and life-improving things for the important people in my life, including my family. I think this one would actually probably be the thing I'd be most excited about!

That's quite a lot of daydreaming - er, maybe I should actually start buying lottery tickets...what would you splash out on if you had a sudden windfall?

Lush 'Granny Takes A Dip' Bath Bomb

Monday, 27 October 2014

Lush Granny Takes A Dip bath bomb blog review
Lush Granny Takes A Dip bath bomb blog review

 Normally in Lush I'll opt for bubble bars over bath bombs, as I love a proper bubbly soak (and I did pick up one of those too!). However, in the spirit of branching out I also grabbed the 'Granny Takes A Dip' bath bomb (£3.35), as the bright colours really drew me in. With ginger, pepper and lemon oil, it's made to perk you up when you're feeling a bit rubbish, and inject a bit of colour into your life!

Scent-wise, it's probably not my favourite Lush product - I did like it, but it wasn't quite strong enough for my tastes - which usually involve making the bathroom smell like an explosion at the Lush factory. Although for those who prefer their scents more subtle, it's a great choice, and I felt both revived and chilled out after using it. I adored how fun the colours were (the picture doesn't do it justice!) and it fizzed for absolutely ages, leaving a light creamy residue that felt awesome and softening on my skin. When it calmed down, the water turned a really lovely purple colour - my favourite colour! I'm still not sure I'm a total convert from bubbles, but this definitely made an impact!

Are you a bubble or a fizz fan?

Flat Iron Steak

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Flat Iron Steak London
Flat Iron Steak London
Flat Iron Steak London

I actually went to Flat Iron Steak ages ago, but only just got round to talking about it - which is rubbish, because it's a place that NEEDS to be shared with everyone. Flat Iron have two restaurants in London, one in Soho and one on Denmark Street. We initially went to the Soho one, but it was super busy. The hostess recommended we try the Denmark Street branch, so we walked there and it was really quiet, although after we arrived, it seemed that lots of other people had been told the same thing and it got busier!

Lately I've been really appreciating restaurants that specialise in one type of food, as I find having a simple menu with one focus means they can really focus on their specialism. As you might have guessed from the pictures, Flat Iron focus on STEAK. Steak is great. I like steak a lot. And Flat Iron's steak is without a doubt the best I've ever had. Amazingly juicy and tender (they recommend medium rare, which is my usual steak-y go-to anyway), the taste is just so...full! I could have probably eaten another afterwards for the taste alone! I had some of their dripping chips too, which are absolutely amazing, and they bring you out a little cup of popcorn to nibble on. They also do some cool beers and cocktails, but us being skint, we opted for the tap water...

The steak itself was £10, and there are also a couple of 'specials' that are a bit pricier, but I think a tenner for a really amazing quality steak is pretty bargainous really, definitely worth it. I'm totally going to be heading to Flat Iron more often, it might well be one of my new favourite places to eat in the city!

Have you ever been to Flat Iron?

Home Inspiration: Hillarys House Beautiful Range

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

A couple of weeks ago, I went to an event at the v.swanky Chelsea Harbour Hotel hosted by Hillarys to promote their new range in collaboration with House Beautiful Magazine. I've unfortunately lost the photos I took on the night, but I thought I'd share some of the lovely images from their press release instead, as they're amazing inspiration to see how the collection would fit into a home. The evening included a chance to check out the range up-close and personal, as well as talks from the product design team and House Beautiful editor Julia Goodwin, who both gave a really interesting insight into the way the collection was put together.

The 'global textures' range with House Beautiful is Hillarys' first collaboration with a magazine, and takes inspiration from architecture across the globe. The resulting colour palettes of pinks, purples and contemporary neutrals feature a mixture of patterns and plain designs, so you can mix and match to make a 'feature' with a curtain or cushion. I really like the purple Portia floral print (photo 2, and the cushion in photo 5) and the Baroque Mulberry (picture 1), both are totally the kind of style I'd go for if I was doing up my own home! The colours in general are really luxe and gorgeous, and I got to have a feel of the fabrics at the event - they feel like amazing quality and real investment pieces that will last in your home for years and years.

Hillarys offer a bespoke in-home service, where an advisor will bring samples to your home and work out the best options for the interior look you want, then

Hillarys have also put up their own blog post if you want to know more about the evening and the collection, so check it out here!

What do you think of their choices for the House Beautiful range?

Weekend Wishlist 18.10.14: Party Dresses from Warehouse

Saturday, 18 October 2014

First up - sorry for the lack of posting of late, my internet has died on me so I'm unable to post from home, and I'm super busy with work. I'll be back properly soon, promise! As it's nearly November already (whaaat), lots of us will be on the hunt for the perfect party dress - and Warehouse have come up trumps with some amazing frocks, with price ranges going from budget to payday treat. Taking three classic styles for the festive season, here are some of my top picks from Warehouse's fab selection of dresses:

perfect party dresses - metallics - warehouse
Metallics are always a great go-to for party dresses, and there are styles to suit everyone. If you're looking for something cute and laid back, the Metallic Mesh Plisse dress is a perfect choice, and an absolute bargain at the sale price of just £15! For something a bit more dressed up, I'd pick the Metallic Strappy Midi - the see-through layer over a shorter dress is really striking and great for striking a balance between leggy and modest. If you want to go all out, I really love the Animal Jacquard, which mixes a bold print with sparkling metallics - it looks like it'd be a really flattering fit too!

The LBD - With A Twistperfect party dresses - little black dress - warehouse

The LBD is an absolute classic when you're having a 'NOTHING TO WEAR!' drama or facing a bit of an ambiguous dress code for a fancy event. However, if plain black is a bit too simple for your tastes, there's plenty of choice when it comes to subtle embellishing that adds the 'wow' factor. Although on the pricey side, the Leather and Scuba dress mixes two great-looking textures and the skater style makes the leather really wearable for any body shape. For something a bit more adventurous, the cut out panels in the Mesh Insert dress flash some flesh without being too OTT. Or, if you want something simple and subtle, go for detail on the lower half of the dress, like this Lazercut Detail dress.


perfect party dresses - lace - warehouse

Lace dresses are a party go-to for me, and the huge range of styles and colours mean there'll always be something lacy I'll love. Even though the colder weather has firmly set in, pastels haven't been completely left in the summer, and this pastel pink Structured A-Line dress brings some light into the dark evenings. For something elegant and classic, I really like this Jacquard Lace Shoulder dress, in a subtle colour but with gorgeous detailing. And if you want to stand out from the party crowd, why not go for something bright and eye-catching, like this hot pink High Neck Lace Prom dress?

What kind of styles will you be looking for this party season? Check out the full range of Warehouse dresses online - let me know which ones you're loving!

*sponsored post

My New Favourite Perfume: Jasper Conran Nightshade

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Jasper Conran Nightshade Woman perfume blog review
Jasper Conran Nightshade Woman perfume blog review
Jasper Conran Nightshade Woman perfume blog review

I absolutely love finding amazing new perfumes, and I think I've found my favourite so far of anything I've tried! I was lucky enough to win a bottle of Jasper Conran Nightshade Woman (£25 for 50ml, FeelUnique) in a FeelUnique Facebook competition. I'd never actually even had a sniff of it before, so I was quite excited to try something new - but didn't realise just how much I'd adore it! Launched in August, the Jasper Conran Nightshade range features two perfumes - one aimed towards men and one aimed at women.

Purple is my favourite colour, so even before smelling it I fell a little bit in love with the packaging. The bottle is simple yet pretty, with graduating purple tones and a black lid, and I think it definitely looks more expensive than it is. Scent-wise, it's actually quite different to the type of fragrance I normally opt for - less sweet and girly and more sensual and deep. The top notes of mandarin orange, pink pepper and freesia are quite zingy and bright-smelling, without being excessively overpowering. Once it's settled into the skin, there's a woody, musky feel with the base notes of cedar, musk and amber really coming through, and it has brilliant longevity too.

With a lot of high-end fragrances costing upwards of £50, I think this is quite the bargain for how gorgeous it smells. I had a look online for reviews of Nightshade and it doesn't actually seem to be that well-covered, which surprised me. This is definitely going to be my 'signature scent' for Autumn and Winter, and it's great for anyone looking for a slightly more grown up perfume that still has a youthful sultriness to it!

What perfumes are you guys using and loving at the moment? Do you have a 'signature scent' you swear by?

Nail Art: Essie 'Naughty Nautical' & Nail Tattoos

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Nail Art: Essie Naughty Nautical polish, Nail Art Nail Tattoos, swatch & review
Nail Art: Essie Naughty Nautical polish, Nail Art Nail Tattoos, swatch & review
Nail Art: Essie Naughty Nautical polish, Nail Art Nail Tattoos, swatch & review
Nail Art: Essie Naughty Nautical polish, Nail Art Nail Tattoos, swatch & review

When I went to London Fashion Weekend last month, I was super excited to find an Essie polish in the goody bag - as I've never actually tried any of their polishes, despite them being highly rated in the blogging world. The shade I got was Naughty Nautical (£4.95, NailPolish.co.uk), and as you might know, I love all things nautical so it was a perfect surprise. Naughty Nautical is a lightish blue-green, with a slight shimmer. The polish was so easy to apply, with the perfect brush and an even consistency. It dries faster than a lot of other polishes I've tried, and it stayed chip-free for around three days, which for me, the girl with constantly chipped nails through being clumsy, is pretty great.

I also got my hands on these Nail Art Nail Tattoos (£5.99, Boots), inspired by cult tattoo designs. Although not all the designs are to my taste, I really wanted to try out the leopard print and diamond ones (the pack advertised on the Boots website offers a slightly different variety of styles). I assumed they'd work like temporary tattoos, but they're basically just stickers that you pop onto your nails. The diamond shapes were really easy to apply, although the leopard print was more tricky, and I had to use tweezers to apply them more precisely. Not that it REALLY matters with leopard though, as it's a look that can be a bit random and messy. Using a top coat, I found these lasted around 3 days without starting to look tatty, and could have lasted a couple more before I actually needed to remove them.

I really enjoyed playing around with the Nail Tattoos and think they look awesome over Naughty Nautical. If you're not the most dexterous person when it comes to decorating your nails, these are an easy way of creating nail art with minimal effort.

Are you an Essie fan? What are your favourite nail art designs?