Thursday, 27 November 2014

Probably the best advent calendar in the world...

From who other than Liberty - it's now sold out online but I'm told there are still some available in store. Top treats include a voucher for a Sisley facial, and mini Diptyque candle. And although it's expensive at £149, there are £420 worth of products inside those beautifully decorated, Liberty print drawers.

{Liberty's 2014 beauty advent calendar}

For more info on the best of the rest of beauty advent calendars available this year, check out this article, but be quick, these Christmassy treats are selling like hot mince pies.

Monday, 17 November 2014


The reason I have abandoned this blog of late and haven't been posting, is because I have been spending all of my time looking for the perfect winter boot. This is almost not a joke. This year it has been a mission, and, one which I haven't cracked yet, so I have put it on hold for the time being. I have hauled myself out of the boot abyss. If any of you have had some better success than I then please do show and tell.

In the meantime, there has been some time for vintage shopping, and here are some of my finds.

{new glass-stand fruit bowl}
{strained - a new Norwegian tea strainer, found for just 75p}

{tricky to totter in, but the colour combination makes these a winner}
{a vintage Debenhams sun dress - this is sitting it out until next year…}
{this coat was donation to me by Bob, and is my new favourite thing}

This coat is a winner - and very of the moment, with its lack of any sort of fastening, which seems to be the thing going on for coats at the moment. Something of an oxymoron. Its's 100% wool and made by Hammels, and the black detailing on the shoulders and pockets is just brilliant.

The picture below documents my ongoing obsession with stripes, which is not only limited to my wardrobe but also to home furnishings. The stripe on the left my become a window blind at some point. The stripe in the middle has already been made into cushions, and the stripe on the right is my new duvet and pillowcase set. 

{all kinds of stripes}

A couple of weeks ago saw Popeye and I head out for a day trip down to Bruton in Somerset, for two reasons: to visit At The Chapel and also Hauser & Wirth. I'd read about Bruton and how it's earned its current moniker of "the new Notting Hill" and fortune in Vogue magazine, which reeled a long list of the great and the good who have moved to the area. And so we weren't surprised when we found ourselves jostling up against Rhys Ifans when we were waiting for our lunch table.

Hauser & Wirth is an amazing set-up of an art gallery in Somerset, located in an old farm setting, and now buzzing with cool-looking people and art which I have no idea what it's meant to be about. Amazing cafe though. And shop. And let's be honest, they're always the best bits anyway. My favourite part was the light installation below by Martin Creed, which was displayed alongside of the farmhouse, which I bought many, many postcards of.

{farmhouse, art by Martin Creed - pic via The Telegraph)
{the bar - pic via here}
{garden: pic via The Guardian}
{At The Chapel exterior}
{At The Chapel interior - pic via The Telegraph}
And the pizza - it was so VERY good I forgot to take a photo of it until I'd troughed half of it. Best pizza I've had in a long old time. 

Friday, 10 October 2014

Z for Accessorize

I know this range isn't exactly hot off the press, but last weekend was the first time I'd seen it in its gold-plated flesh.

It's a well priced, beautifully designed range which looks and feel much more expensive than it actually is. All the items are gold plated and any embellishment is using crystals or semi-precious stones. For those of you thinking about starting your Christmas shopping (I know! How organised?) then this would be a great place to start. Use voucher code STUDENT4ACC for a 10% discount when you check out.

{Z for Accessorize jewellery range}

Top row, left to right
Crystal tab short drop earrings, £12; Aura precious stone ring, £15; Evil eye cord bracelet, £10.

Middle row, left to right
Azure bands stack set, £15; Cassius long coin pendant necklace, £17; Cut out hexagon stud earrings, £8.

Bottom row, left to right
Galaxy pave disc ring, £15; Simple triangle necklace, £12; Kiki hexagon long pendant necklace, £22.

Monday, 29 September 2014

Tonight we will online shop (with 20% discount)

20% discount codes are spreading like a rash at the moment, with Boden (promotion code J5Y8), Atterley Road (promotion code NEWSEASON20), My Wardrobe (promotion code WITMYW25, and actually it's 25%) and Hobbs (promotion code ATUMN) all offering the discount.

So, given that it's pay day tomorrow, you could save yourself some serious money by getting online and clickety-clicking that mouse. You could even get ahead with your Christmas shopping (less than 90 days to go, people!) - don't forget that Boden also sells menswear, for those essential socks / pants / knitwear based man-presents.

So I looked to my two favourite retailers out of the bunch, Atterley Road and Boden, to see what would tempt me from their new season edits (don't forget that these codes don't apply on sale items) and here are my top picks. And oops, I've just ordered the jewelled pumps from Boden, which I believe will not leave my feet for the whole of Christmas and New Year. They're festive greetings in shoe form.

All prices below are listed BEFORE discount, so you might want to get your calculator.

Top row, left to right
French Connection Emmeline wide leg trousers, £95; By Malene Birger Acalion chunky necklace, £109; Boden raglan sweatshirt, £49; People Tree Hallie stripe t-shirt, £38; People Tree, Stella fitted dress, £25.

Middle row, left to right
Boden flirty pencil skirt, £69; Boden slip-on trainer, £69; Selected Femme Kanna jumper, £45; Boden jewelled pump, £129.

Bottom row, left to right
Boden boho boot, £119; Boden woven front jumper, £79; Boden colour pop blouse, £119; Atterley Road Kelly Leopard clutch, £55.

Monday, 22 September 2014

Weekend away: Bridport

If you're trying to think of somewhere to go for a little weekend away, then you couldn't really go wrong with Bridport in Dorset. Dorset is always the county which we drive through on the way to Devon, never stopping to find out more about the area. So this time we dedicated a special trip to the area.

I'd heard great reports about The Bull Hotel, which also has a cider and pizza restaurant in the stable block out the back, as well as its own restaurant, bar and cocktail bar. It packs quite the punch. And the town has an enviable antiques market on a Saturday morning, as well as being packed with independent high street shops in its vintage quarter and a bustling arts centre. Oh and there's also a hefty dose of charity shops. All in all, it's quite the Lemonade Pockets sort of place.

Lyme Regis is nearby for a visit, but be warned it is jammed full of tourists in summer, although Popeye and I managed to get ourselves a session on the outdoor table tennis tables complete with sea view for a competitively fought game.

The best local beach is Burton Bradstock, only about a ten minute drive away, for some stunning Jurassic Coast sea views and marvellous food from the Hive Beach Cafe.

{The Bull Hotel}

{table tennis comes with a view of the famous Cobb}

{sea views from the Hix Oyster & Fish House, Lyme Regis}

{The Stables in Bridport - anyone for cider?}

{cider with a side of pizza}

{cocktails in the Venner Bar}

{new toothbrush mug from the vintage market}

{my favourite stall at the market - Jenny Sibthorp - that's her!}

{my lobster pot zipped purse - similar here although I'm loving the dry stone wall print too}

{Girl's Own Store, Bridport}

{huge array of flowers at the market}

{Burton Bradstock beach with the famous Hive Beach Cafe}

{the biggest pork scratchings at The Bull restaurant}

{er, more cocktails}

Friday, 19 September 2014

Basket case

I like a browse of the ferm LIVING website occasionally, loving all the contemporary Danish products they sell and their beautifully styled photos.

I've long been a fan of these wire baskets, which are sold in several sizes to store blankets, cushions, magazine, knitting… anything which needs to be amalgamated into one place to stop the place from looking untidy.

{baskets come in a range of sizes}

{available in four different colours}

{wooden tops for the baskets are also available}

{prices from EUR 58.00}

When I found this dusty, misshapen wire basket in the attic of an old building I decided to attack it with the spray paint to try and create my own (admittedly more rustic) version of a ferm LIVING wire basket. And also we needed a bin in the study so this was a cheap solution. But it's strictly for paper only - no apple cores allowed.

{the original version - a bit misshapen}

{choose your paint colour and spray away}

{the finished version, with a little bending back into shape}

And for something a bit more purse-friendly, H&M have got a range of wire storage items online at the moment, starting from £6.99.

{wire storage available from H&M}

Friday, 12 September 2014

Holiday shopping

Je suis en vacances! Having a little break in the south of France for a couple of weeks, enjoying the sunshine and mainly spending a lot of time sitting around the pool, surrounded by vineyards. Nice. I did a little bit of holiday shopping before I came, and here's what was on my wish list. As per usual, I've packed for two weeks, but have so far only worn about 20% of my wardrobe. Wishing I'd saved the suitcase space to bring back some wine...

Top row, left to right
Stripe drawstring dress, £32.99 GAP (not the exact one I bought - I found mine for £11 in the GAP sale, but this one is similar); Pleated dress, £74.95 GAP (love this dress, and they also do it in a floral chambray); Leather satchel, £74.95 GAP; Toiletries: travel sized Bumble & Bumble Surf SprayThickening Lotion and Caudalie Beauty Elixir.

Middle row, left to right
Patti patterned front jumper, £59 Reiss; Barry M Lipstick in Coral Blush, £4.49 Superdrug; Poplin sleep set, £29.95 GAP.

Bottom row, left to right
Hush cross strap leather sandals, £40 Office; Foster leather flat sandals, £22 ASOS; Essie Clam Bake nail polish, £10.95 Look Fantastic.