Tuesday, 21 August 2012

House of Fraser Blogger Style Challenge

House of Fraser have launched a competition to win £200 voucher for the blogger who can create the best outfit for the new season and I am a complete sucker for a good styling competition. I love it, I love it, I love it. 

I had great fun with this, House of Fraser have got some amazing lines in for the new season so it was incredibly difficult to choose but here's what I came up with:


I've called my outfit 'turning, leaves' a title that I'm incredibly proud of due to brilliant double meaning. Little Miss English degree, over here. Yeah, so, basically the rich, burgundy in the outfit represents the 'turning leaves' of the upcoming Autumn season and the other meaning is how everyone watches as you 'turn' and 'leave' because of how damn stylish you look. Clever, right? Yeahhhhhh it is. 

Here are the links to the pieces I chose for this outfit:

Contrast Blouse - I love the colour of this but if it were fully burgundy the colour would be a bit overpowering, the contrast with the nude lining makes it just perfect. It also has some lovely studded detailing on the collar.
Metallic Skirt - A-line is simply my favourite cut at the moment. This is so perfect for the new season, what with 60s being a major trend.
Clarins Burgundy Lipstick - A deep red lipstick is a classic, this matches the blouse and bag perfect and brings the whole outfit together.
Cream Mary Janes - These classic shoes give the 'chic' look to the outfit and match both the coat and the lining of the blouse.
Burgundy Satchel - Everyone loves a good satchel. Fact. That pretty much encompasses why I included that. They're also a classic... a term I seem to be using a lot to justify my choices.
Contrast Sleeve Coat - Oh, I need this in my life - It's so chic! The pigmented centre goes nicely with the skirt whilst the sleeves go well with the cream heels. It also has that 60s cut which I mentioned earlier with the skirt.

I think the keyword to sum up this outfit then is 'Classic'. 
I think the beauty of this outfit is just how perfect it is for any occasion. The formality of the blouse and the satchel mean that it can be worn to the office on a normal day but the glitzy, metallic skirt and heeled shoes shoes are perfect for a date or a girly night out.

What do you think of my outfit? Will you enter the competition? Leave me your link if you do!

Monday, 20 August 2012

OOTD: My first ever!

Hello all!

It's been a long time coming but I finally decided it was time for me to become a proper little blogger and do an outfit of the day post. It's something I've been meaning to do for quite a while but I really don't like photographing myself so I've been putting it off. 

So here's what I wore today... hopefully it'll be the first of many!

Skirt - Topshop || Blouse - H&M || Cardigan - Charity Shop
Bag - Ebay || Necklace - Charity Shop || Tattoo - Inkwear

Here's the cameo necklace in a little more detail - I love charity shops! I found this in my local and managed to bag it for £1. It's really unique and ethereal, I love the image of the nymphs dancing.

My dream-catcher Inkwear Tattoo lasted about four days before it started to look a bit patchy which I think is pretty good going. I wanted to try out a coloured one next and thought the butterfly would match my outfit perfectly. 

So, what do you think of my first ever OOTD? It took me long enough to do, I know!

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Oreo Cupcakes Recipe: The. Best. Thing. Ever.

After coming across a recipe for Oreo Cupcakes on Stumbleupon I thought that they were the greatest thing I'd ever seen and had to recreate it myself.

I decided that I had to share the recipe with you since they're so easy and INSANELY delicious - you will not be disappointed!

Basic Ingredients to make 12 Oreo Cupcakes:

·         100g Unsalted Butter
·         100g Caster Sugar
·         2 eggs
·         100g Self-raising flour
·         14g Cocoa Powder, sifted
·         1 pack of Oreos

For the Oreo butter cream icing:

·         45g Unsalted Butter
·         75g  Icing sugar, sifted
·         2 tbsp milk
·         Any remaining Oreos

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees or Gas Mark 4
Place 12 paper cases in a cupcake baking tray and add half an Oreo to the each case (it should be the part with cream in)

(I put a full Oreo in a couple of cases which you can do if you wish, but this won't leave any for the icing at the end) 

Put the remaining halves of the Oreos in a bowl to one side as you'll use them for the icing later.

Cream together the butter and caster sugar, until pale and fluffy.
Add the eggs a little at a time, beating after each.
Fold in the flour and cocoa powder.
You should be left with a mixture looking something like this:

Fill the paper cases evenly with cake mixture:

Bake for around 15 mins, or until a knife inserted in centre comes out clean.
Whilst the mixture is baking you can make the butter cream icing:
First crush your remaining Oreos into crumbs and place them in a bowl. (You could use a food processor but I put them in a bag and rolled them with a rolling pin for a while)
Add the remaining butter and icing sugar, along with 2 tablespoons of milk and whisk all together for about 5-10 minutes.
Once your cakes have cooled down, spread the Oreo buttercream onto the top of each cake and VOILA!
You can also break a couple of Oreos and stick them in the top to decorate as I have done here:

They're so yummy, even better than they look and so insanely simple to make - I'd definitely recommend it if you have a spare half an hour with nothing to do!

The best thing about them is the Oreo at the bottom, they tend lose their hardness in the oven and acquire a cake-like texture which is simply yum.

Pretty cool, huh?

Has anyone made Oreo Cupcakes before? Have you got any recommendations of any cakes that I should make? I love baking!

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Competition Entry: Holiday Hop with Daisybutter and New Look!

Hi all!

I looooooooove styling competitions so when I found out that Daisybutter was hosting a competition in collaboration with New Look where you could win up to £400 worth of New Look clothing for styling five outfits I just HAD to get involved. I always have way too much fun styling outfits and this was no exception, basically you have five categories that you have to style five different outfits for, the categories are: travel style, beach it, sunset supper, beach to club and poolside. So here's my entry! Wish me luck.
If you're interested in entering the competition I've left the link at the end of this post - get involved!

Cropped Blazer || Pink Rucksack 
Kaleidoscope Pants || Sequin Bralet || Neon Hi-tops

Can you guess where I got my inspiration for this first outfit? Think Cheryl Cole's 'Call My Name' video! This outfit is really stylish and playful but is still really comfortable thanks to the trousers and hi-top sneakers, making it perfect for travelling in comfort and style. The rucksack is also a great addition for keeping the travel essentials safe.

Retro Swimsuit || Cream Sunnies
High-waisted shorts || EST 1969 Clutch || Red Wedges 

My 'Beach It' outfit is really inspired vintage fashions but still looks playful and stylish. It's great for a day full of fun at the beach. The denim high-waisted shorts can slip over the swimsuit and compliment them nicely, making it an outfit that can easily be worn wandering up and down the beach or on the street.

Aztec Dress || Black and Gold Wedges || Embellished Clutch || Statement Necklace

I looooooooooooooove this outfit! I wanted to include one really glamorous outfit in my choice of five and this is it! The dress has a gorgeous peplum shape and aztec pattern that is bang on trend. I also love just how sparkly this outfit is! Perfect for a night out on the town as well as an evening meal.

Coral Cropped Blazer || Pastel Aztec Dress || Jelly Blue Wedges || Colour Block Satchel

I found this outfit the hardest to style but, when in doubt, always go for a bodycon! Bodycons tend to work successfully in both the day and the evening and the bright colours, mixed with metallics on this dress cement this. Jelly shoes are a beach classic but these blue ones have a great wedged heel which means they can be worn at night too! I've also thrown in a bright jacket for when it gets cooler in the evening.

This is my favourite outfit of the whole lot! I'm a boho girl at heart so I can see myself wearing this one. I chose a bright maxi skirt to add some colour to the ensemble, it's also easy to slip on and off if you fancy a swim! Add a few chic pieces of jewellery and accessories and that's a stylish outfit.

So there we have it! My entry into the Holiday Hop competition.

What do you think of my entry? Have you entered yourself? Let me know if you have, would love to see what you come up with!

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Competition Win: Inkwear Temporary Tattoos

Hello all!

I absolutely love small and discreet tattoos but I'm FAR too much of a wimp to actually get one myself. Not because of the pain, but because I change my opinion on things like tattoos every other day.

So I was super excited to find out that I'd won £20 worth of Inkwear Temporary Tattoos from Tara and Jade aka the gorgeous girlies at The Style Rawr.

I absolutely LOVE Inkwear's designs, I often think tattoos look tacky but their designs are subtle and dreamy. Raight oop ma street, as Cheryl Cole would say.

Please note: Address has been censored in an effort to stop you from finding and murdering me. I know you're all psychos.
I only emailed them my choices a couple of days ago so it was a pleasant surprise to find this on my door step this morning.
Congratulatory letter.
The designs wot I chose - they're absolutely gorgeous!
It's so hard to pick a favourite.
I think the top hummingbird might be my favourite though, the colouring is so beautiful.
Decided to try out the Dream Catcher first.
They're so quick and easy to apply, it literally took about 20 seconds. The black designs look really real in my opinion but I can't wait to try out a coloured one like the butterfly or the hummingbird. 

It's supposed to stay on for around 3-5 days, so I'll let you know if it succeeds in sticking around for that long. I'm also hoping to do an OOTD sometime this week or next weeks so I may well use a new one for that.

What do you think of temporary tattoos? Or permanent ones for that matter, have you got any yourself?

Monday, 13 August 2012

I have a serious case of post-olympic depression.

You may or may not have noticed that I have been relatively quiet over the last two weeks on the blogging front. This is due to the fact that I've been working at the Olympics as a programme seller and have hardly had a day free to even think about posting anything.

However, unfortunately, and it's time for me to come crashing back to earth after two of the most amazing weeks of my life.

It's not just the incredible sporting achievements and electric atmosphere that have made the Olympics brilliant though. Personally, it's done wonders for my state-of-mind and restored my faith in Great Britain. 

Over the last few years we've had so much negative press about our country. Our own media labelling us as 'Broken Britain' and with the riots and expenses/tax scandals of the powerful people in our country, I'd become a bit of a cynic, always assuming that people are out for themselves and that the only way to get by was to look out for yourself. I think that's an awful attitude for someone as young as I am to have but it's only come about as a result of the years of scandal, cheating and violence that's littered the press.

For a while I had completely forgotten that the vast majority of people are inherently good. The Olympics has changed that. In the two weeks that I have been working at the Olympics I've probably spoken to more people than I have in my entire life (easily in the thousands, probably closer to the tens of thousands!) and I haven't come across a single person with a bad attitude. In fact almost everyone greeted me, a stranger who was just there to sell them a programme or two, with a smile and wished me a good day, as I did them. 

It's been a privilege to play the smallest part in such a fantastic event and I hope that Britain can feed off the positivity that the Olympics has provided for some time. One thing is for sure, whenever I feel myself slipping back into my old, cynical ways I'm going to remember these two weeks. The weeks when I met the truly good-natured people of Britain and I'll remind myself that, actually, it's not all that bad at all.

Here's a selection of photos that I've taken over the past two weeks. (I took A LOT this really is a selection.)

I went with the fam to watch the swimming.

Park Live

The Velodrome

Day 8: Selling programmes at the Stadium

Action shot!

The Orbit

Waiting for the crowds to pile into the stadium.

Sunset at the Olympic Park.

I snuck in and watched a couple of races. Shhhhhhhh.

Perks of the job.

All lit up.

Hadleigh Farm. My home town.

Watching the race during my break.

This says it all.

I went all patriotic with my nail art. How could I not?
I'm going to leave you with a good BBC montage which sums up my feelings on the whole experience and then go and weep into my pillow because it's all over.

Did anyone else go to the Olympics? Did you just watch it on TV or did you not care at all? I'd love to know your views on it.