Thursday, 27 December 2012

#MSMSecretSanta: What I received and sent

Hi yall.

Hope you've all had a terrific Christmas. My Christmas was lovely but, frankly, lacked chocolate gateaux. Bad times. What it lacked in chocolate gateaux it made up for in lovely gifts though, including my #MSMSecretSanta gift from Rebecca at Oh! Panda.

I am so massively pleased with my #MSMsecretsanta present from Rebecca. She sent me a gorgeous woodland themed box of suprises which included some beautiful tree decorations, a cut out deer, a gorgeous wooden trinket box, craft supplies and, my personal favourites, a little deer necklace and scarf. 

I've been wearing my deer scarf every day since I got it and LOVE it. It's so cosy and I've had so many comments from people asking where I got it! Rebecca you've done wonders with the £25 budget and thanks for being so thoughtful and creative with your presents - I love them!

Here's what I got for Rebecca, I hope she likes them. (I know she's opened them, so I'm not spoiling any suprises, in case you were wondering!)

The first part of my present I decided to hand make. I'm a bit of a clutz I have to say, so the notebook I made didn't come out as beautifully as I would have liked but I gave it a good go anyway! I bought a simple notebook from Sainsburys for £1 and got some gorgeous remnant fabric from Laura Ashley (it's called 'Josette') and used fabric glue to cover the notepad after I'd stitched in 'Oh Panda' on the cover.
My second homemade gift was a teacup candle. I got the teacup from the charity shop for 20p and the rose-scented candle was 50p. I wrote a guest post on how to create teacup candles for the Laura Ashley Blog so if you want to know how to make them simply click here.

The second part of my gifts was supporting good causes and talented people. Rebecca loves tea so I simply had to include an Advent Tea calender! This cost me £5 and was handmade by a friend, Joey, who gave all the proceeds to Christian Aid. It's such a lovely idea as there's a different tea to open every day. So much better than your usual chocolate advent calender, I'm buying one for myself next year.
I also picked up some temporary kitty tattoos for £5.50 from the hugely talented Harriet Gray, these are just the sweetest fake tatts I've ever seen and Harriet is such a fantastic blogger and illustrator so check out her Etsy site.

The final part of my present for Rebecca was simply things I thought she would like. She's a great beauty blogger so I thought it important to include a beauty product. There's been HUGE hype around Revlon's Lipbutters and they're massive on the beauty blogosphere so I picked up the shade 'Lollipop' for £6.50. My final present at £5.50 from Amazon was the HILARIOUS book 'How to tell if your Cat is Plotting to Kill You' by Matthew Inman who you may know as the author of the website 'The Oatmeal'. This is one of my FAVOURITE websites and always cheers me up no end as it contains the funniest notes such as:
Picture from 'The Oatmeal' click to visit.
So there's what I bought for Rebecca and what she bought me, what do you think? I think that we both did pretty well for the £25 budget, I spent a total of £24.20.

Thank you so much, Rebecca, for my gorgeous woodland box of goodies. Everything is so beautiful and I've had so many compliments on my necklace particularly, which I adore! A huge thank you to Money Supermarket as well for organising the Secret Santa. It's been GREAT fun and I've enjoyed getting creative.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Competition Entry: A festive shop window for Next!

Click to enlarge image

Leather Gloves - £16 | Patent Clutch - £20 | Embellished Dress - £65 | Glitter Heels - £32
Rococo Mirror - £150 | Wine Glasses - £14 | Branch Lights - £14

When I read about a competition that Jess at Feeling Stylish was hosting to win £500 worth of Next vouchers I just couldn't pass it up! It's such a fun concept - put together a design set for a Next Christmas shop window. So I've spent this evening putting together my design - I hope you like it! 

I've gone for a rich and opulent Christmas window display in berry colours. This was really inspired by Kate Middleton's Sandringham outfit which she wore last Christmas - she looked lovely in this colour and it feels really festive whilst looking classy.

I've completed my window display with a rococo mirror, branch lights (with berry detailing!) and some lovely red wine glasses. I probably shouldn't admit to this (seeing as I work in Laura Ashley and all...) but Next have some absolutely stunning homeware. How beautiful is the detailing on the rococo mirror?

I really love the regal colours or rich, deep reds mixed with golds - if you can't be extravagant at Christmas when can you be, eh?

What do you think of my festive window display for next? This has made me want to be a visual merchandiser now!

Click here to visit Feeling Stylish and enter the competition yourself!

Tuesday, 4 December 2012


Evening all!

A few weeks back I was contacted by the ever-innovative people at Money Supermarket who wanted to know whether I'd like to take part in their blogger secret santa challenge. I thought it was an absolutely brilliant idea and so here I am, weeks later, in the process of planning my gifts for my Secret Santa partner!

Here's how it works: Money Supermarket have paired each blogger up with one another and given everyone £25 to buy a Christmas gift for their blogger partner. It's such a great idea! It's given me the chance to discover some fab new blogs that I've never seen before as well as trying to come up with some creative presents for my secret santa partner.
Not only that though, the blogger who is deemed to have come up with the best present for the £25 budget will win themselves and iPad mini, as well as three runners up receiving a £50 voucher!

The blogger I've been partnered with is the beautiful Rebecca from 'Oh! Panda' I'd never seen her blog before being partnered with her but I'm so glad that I was! She's such a brilliant writer and she loves and cats and tea. In my book, that pretty much qualifies her as a mega-awesome person.

Check out her blog here:

As hard as it may seem to buy gifts for someone you've never met before, it's really incredible what you can tell about a person from their blog. As I said, she loves cats and tea... so there might be just a couple of pieces to do with that amongst my gifts. I also wanted my gifts to be heartfelt, so I really put some effort in and handmade a couple of pieces, these are perhaps more representative of me than Rebecca, but I hope she likes them all the same! I've still got a little bit left within my budget though so I'm still considering what to do with that. She LOVES nature so something nature-themed is a definite maybe but I'm also considering a staple beauty product as she is, after all, a fantastic beauty blogger!

Also, on a side note, her cat Tequila is just THE cutest thing I've seen in my life:


If you want to see what the bloggers are buying use the #MSMSecretSanta hashtag on twitter or go to Moneysupermarket's Secret Santa Challenge page for more information.

Anyone else taking part in Money Supermarket's Secret Santa? Who have you been paired with?