Monday, 28 November 2016


Having started my Christmas shopping, of course the next thing to do is wrap the presents up! I've always loved looking through Pinterest for ideas of festive wrapping, but I've never actually got round to trying them out... So having a little more time this year has given me the chance to have a go and share them with you too! I've got a part two (and maybe three!) to come too, including DIY gift tags, so make sure to follow and check back again soon for more!

DIY 1: Holly Berries and Hessian
Difficulty: 1/5
Time: 5-10 minutes per present
You will need: Scissors, Brown Paper, Hessian Jute Roll, Two Colour Twine, Holly Bush Branch

Step 1: Wrap present in brown paper
Step 2: Wrap hessian jute roll around present twice
Step 3: Cut hessian length from roll with both ends meeting at the underside of the present, and tape in place.

Step 4: Cut a length of twine long enough to wrap around present at least twice, leaving excess to tie knot.
Step 5: Lay Holly bush branch in place on top of present and wrap twine around holding the branch in place, knot at underside of present and you're done!

DIY 2: Graphic Washi Tapes
Difficulty: 1/5
Time: 5 minutes per present
You will need: Scissors, Brown Paper, Washi Tapes (4 minimum), Dymo Label Maker

Step 1: Wrap present in brown paper
Step 2: Wrap first tape around present, with both ends meeting at the underside of the present
Step 3: Wrap second tape around present, so that it crosses the first tape (as shown below)

Step 4: Repeat steps 2 and 3, offsetting the tape to one side of the first crossed tape by about 5mm

Step 5: Using Dymo label maker, spell out name of who the present is for and print
Step 6: Peel off label backing and stick in place next to washi tape, and that's DIY 2 complete!

Let me know if you give either of these DIYs a go! And like I said, I've got a second gift wrapping DIY to come so keep an eye out for that!

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Thursday, 24 November 2016


Wishlist: Stripe Chunky Knit Jumper, Grey Herringbone Coat, Small Tan Bag, Navy Flatform Brogues, Navy Wide Leg Trousers, Faux Suede Mittens, Navy Cashmere Roll Neck Jumper, Knot Detail Shopper, Shearling Lined Trainers, Camel and Grey Checked Scarf, Grey Wool Trousers, Colour Block Coat

So this past year I've either started dressing like an old lady or M&S have upped their game. I'm thinking the later, but tell me if I'm wrong! I seem to walk round their womenswear department and browse online and spot SO many pieces I want to pick up - hence this M&S packed wishlist! I feel like they are the perfect shop for pieces you'll wear year after year, but still have trend led pieces too. This season I've been completely drawn to all things navy, camel and grey (as you can see above!), I feel they are the perfect warm colours for winter with out picking the obvious Christmas reds and greens.
The striped jumper was a piece from the recent M&S wool edit, and I kinda fell in love at first sight! It just had the perfect balance of statement jumper with out being too bold, with a high neck and chunky (but not TOO chunky!) knit - what could be better? I'm also a little bit in love with the brogue flatforms, and they've been in my bookmarks patiently waiting to go in to sale for the past few months now! The navy colour makes them perfect for now right and then next year in to summer, and as I'm not keen on the usual traditional brogue, the updated shape and perforated detailing really caught my attention.
To be honest I could talk you through why I love everything on this wishlist, but I think the more I talk about the items the more likely I am to buy them all...! So I'll leave you to have a browse for yourself! Let me know if you love any of these pieces, or comment a link to something you've been loving recently!

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Monday, 21 November 2016


Baking our Christmas cake yesterday and putting up Christmas decorations today officially means one thing... I'm in Christmas mode. I normally wouldn't even touch the boxes of baubles until at least the 1st weekend of December, but needing a little pick me up, I put on Buble's Christmas album and whipped out all things red, green and sparkly! Along with my love of decorating, Christmas food is up there with one of the reasons I love this time of year. Quite possibly the first thing to hit supermarket shelves - and consequently my basket - are Mince Pies! This year I decided to do my own little test after reading Good Housekeeping's article and wondering whether I would agree with their number one decision! Having tried A LOT of mince pies over the years, I decided I wouldn't need to try them all again, but just test my favourite against theirs. So, here's my little taste test of mince pies...

Good Housekeeping's Award Winner: Iceland Luxury Mince Pies, £1.50 (Star Topped Mince Pie)
With such a build up, having won the award this year and last, I was excited to finally try this mince pie. I really liked the home made look of them, with a little bit of the filling bursting out, however the pastry did look slightly over cooked around the edges. This affected the pastry texture too, and it was very crumbly and a little dry. Not a good start, but the filling definitely made up for it! The mincemeat packed out the pastry well and had a great Christmassy kick of what I can only assume was brandy, mixed with whole pieces of fruit in the juicy mixture - the best mince pie filling I've had!
Maybe the pastry was a bad batch, as I've read other reviews of it being buttery and smooth. But until I buy another box my verdict is: 8/10

Discount Supermarket: Aldi's Specially Selected Mince Pies, £1.29 (Snowflake Topped Mince Pie)
I'd tasted Aldi's mince pies last year, and they soon became a favourite - not only from the taste but that they were just that little bit cheaper. However, they certainly didn't look cheap and are neatly finished with a light pastry with a festive snowflake. The pastry was smooth with light buttery taste, just how I like it. I did notice that the pie base was quite uneven, meaning if you're looking for perfect pastry the search continues! The mincemeat had a good sweet spiced flavour and a more delicate splash of brandy, not quite as full of fruit, but just as juicy.
Iceland did win the filling contest, but Aldi's still hit the spot! And beating Iceland hands down on pastry in taste and texture means my verdict is: 9/10

What's your favourite mince pie? I'd love to know, so I can test it myself!

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Thursday, 17 November 2016


I've been finding it hard to get up and go recently, and with the colder temperatures and darker days, I've had an easy excuse not to leave the house. Trying to work from home requires a lot of self motivation, and having not done it for long has meant I'm still trying to get the balance right. A morning spent lazing in my dressing gown soon becomes a whole day, meaning I get very little done. And even when I do spend a whole day working, it's easy for friends to think I just sit and watch TV all day every day... Okay, so it does happen sometimes - and more often than I like to admit the last couple of weeks - but other days I wake up and just realise I can't let life pass me by quite so much!
One of these days came earlier this week, and with the rain finally stopping, I decided to cut my usual morning of day time TV short, put on my warmest boots and head out with my mum for a little winter walk in the woods. I can't remember the last time I went for a walk that wasn't between shops in the city centre, so a little bit of fresh air was much needed. Walking along the trodden paths, passing all the dreamy Autumn colours, we got our first glimpse of the Christmas season spotting the bright red of the holly berries weaving through a fence (prompting an idea for a Christmas themed blog post, so check back for that in the next couple of weeks!)
I came back with a cold nose but feeling refreshed for the coming week, making me realise this is definitely something I need to do more often. And you never know, next time I might spot Sid the squirrel or Betsy the badger on our winter walk, and that's a chance I definitely don't want to miss!

Topshop Faux Fur Gilet (similar here), ASOS Gold Necklace, Topshop Aaron Knit Jumper (similar here), Primark Bag (similar here), Topshop Jeans, Office Shearling Lined Boots (similar here)

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Thursday, 3 November 2016


There were literally mere minutes between seeing these loafers on Chloe's Instagram to them being in my online shopping basket and ordered. I'd been after a pair of loafers for quite sometime, but I'm not all that keen on the usual straight gold bar of the Gucci version and the many dupes that have hit the high street recently. I don't know what it is, maybe that my Granny has been wearing similar pairs for as long as I can remember... So, when I saw this Mango pair with the gold ring donning the foot, I couldn't get on the website quick enough! I just know I'm going to be wearing these for a looonggg long time!

Topshop White Tee, Primark Black Duster Jacket (similar here), Mango Double Necklace, ASOS Black Trousers, Mango Ring Loafers

Have you bought anything recently you've liked more than the designer version? Let me know in the comments!

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