Wearing// Boden Breton

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Top Boden// Jeans Dorothy Perkins// Shoes and Scarf Primark//
Bag Accessorize (old) similar

Bloggers are such terrible enablers. I don't necessarily buy something just because I saw a blogger wearing it, the problem is that they introduce me to such amazing brands, that I probably never would have come across, was it not for blogging.

I raved about my new found love of Boden in my Monthly Mostly post at the end of March, and eventually made a big bumper purchase, and cannot say for one second I was disappointed! Even the packaging was beautiful. In my current quest to stalk emulate the lovely Rosie, I invested in this Breton top (I may have also purchased the Bistro crop trousers too!) Rosie had plenty of good words to say about this Breton, and this girl knows her stripes, so who am I to argue!
Its amazing how such a sot, comfy cosy top, can still look super stylish. I rocked up at a friends house, thinking I looked afternoon casual, when she stated "ooo you look dressed up!" Not entirely sure what this says about what I usually come dressed as!! I will definitely be expanding my colour collection that's for sure.

I've always been a bit shy of clashing prints, but I seem to have pinned rather a few stripes and leopard-print outfit combos to my Pinterest and decided it was time I stepped out of my one-print comfort zone and threw a few in there, and hey, I think it kinda works! I pretty much find any excuse I can to wear these shoes right now, so adding another outfit to the repertoire seems a no-brainer. Do you ever buy anything from Primark, then wish you had either bought two versions of it (to replace it after it inevitably falls apart) or bought it in another colour? Then when you go back, its completely sold out? Yep story of my life. I want to fill my warbrode with pointed ankle strap flats right now, but I'm guessing so does everyone else, as they are proving pretty elusive to find! I did eventually find a black pair in Oasis, which may hopefully prolong the life of these lepoardy beauties. 

Something about Breton stripes, automatically screams "put me with a red lip!" to me. I'm not sure what it is, maybe its my inner desire to think I'm going for that Parisian chic, that I'm clearly not pulling off, but hey, it works for me!

Making Your Own Wedding Invitations

Sunday, 20 April 2014

I've been in a real quandary about sharing so much of my wedding preparations on here. Obviously this isn't a 'wedding blog' and you probably read my blog for other reasons rather than wedding posts. However I do love a good DIY and I know I trawled the internet for hours looking for hints on tips on so many wedding related things. After much soul searching over the issue I have decided to share some of the craftier element - I want to save some things until the big day - as a lot of them can be used in other areas. For example, don't just see this as how to design your wedding invites, see this as how to design any invitation! 

In this post I wanted to share with you some tips and ideas to think about before taking on making your invites. It will be a far bigger task than you anticipate. The pictures above are my invites (with key info blanked out) to give you an idea of what I came up with.

  • First and foremost before you even consider making your own wedding invitations. Consider it again. And then again. Honestly, it will be far more stressful than you first bargained for. The invites are the first sign of what your wedding theme is going to be, and is usually one of the things that many guests will keep.
  • Be realistic about what you can achieve. Unless you have a full photoshop suite at you fingertips, the chances are you are not going to be able to produce something to the standard of a professional stationer, If you are DIYing your invites than you the chances are that you are going for the handmade look anyway. 
  • KISS - Keep It Simple Stupid. No matter how simple you think your invite is, chances are after the first 4 or 5 you will begin to wish it was even simpler. Honestly. Don't forget as well as the day invites you have the evening ones to do as well. Make the evening invites even more simplified as you will have to do more of these than the day ones.
  • Get an idea of how you want your invite to look prior to going shopping. Even if your aren't very artistic its easy to sketch out a basic idea of what you want to achieve.
  • Start designing early. I changed my design 3 or 4 times.
  • Buy envelopes first. I bought a pack of cards and envelopes together, so I knew they would fit. The last thing you want is to spend all that time designing invites to not find any envelopes to fit them in.
  • Limit the amount of ink stamping/embossing etc. Unless you have got a very steady hand, this can be very time consuming to keep it from smudging. Always do any ink stamping, first, then you haven't wasted any time on doing the rest of the invite prior to smudging any ink.
  • Utilise your computer and the Internet. They are so many free fonts and images all over the 'net that are really easy to install, which will give your invite that individual edge. You can also easily design your invite within Word - you don't necessarily need a design package.
  • Decide whether you intend to include your gift list of not and how you intend to incorporate this.
  • Also think about how you want people to RSVP and whether you are going to include this within the invite.
  • Check out craft stores such as Hobbycraft and the internet for supplies. Ebay is really cheap for stationary supplies.They have lot of different card foldouts, which you may want to use.
  • Don't forget to factor in extras such as RSVP cards, glue, embellishments when working out your budget.Some elements will be dual purpose, such as a glue gun.
  • Buy a paper cutter. It will save you tons of time and will ensure your edges are super straight. This will come in useful for other DIY paper projects.
  • Invest in good quality paper. This will make the difference in the quality and overall look of your invites.
  • Have you included all the basic information? Venue, date time, space to say exactly who you have invited? What about  map or hotel information? I included the time the evening reception would start as well, in case people wanted to plan to go home for an hour prior to the evening reception. 
  • Proofread; proofread; proofread. After you have designed, written and read your invited 20 times you will think it says what it is meant to, but check this before printing hundreds of invites and wasting all that ink and paper. 
  • Once you've settled on your design, make a 'prototype'. If other people offer to help then you've got a reference idea for them. Print the first one off in draft, before printing off a final version.
I hope this is helpful in giving you some starting points to get designing your invites.  It's difficult to give step by step instructions as it is all dependant on your own design, but DIYing your invites is an opportunity to make your invites really individual.

My Furry Friend Tag.

Monday, 14 April 2014

I saw this tag on Rachel's blog, and as it's been a while since I did either a tag post, or shared some pictures of my fur babies, I thought this was a good excuse to indulge in my love of my pets.

What is your pet’s name?
My dog is called Toby. His kennel name is Jocasi Aldwyn.
My cat is called Star.

What kind of pet are they and what breed?
Toby is a black working Labrador. Star is a black common moggie.

How long have you had your pet?
Toby - 2 years 6 months.
Star -  4 years approx.

How did you get your pet?
When I first moved in with my other half I had a cat called Mason who came to live with us. I had dogs at my mums, but one of them sadly died one weekend. My other half had gotten ridiculously drunk the night before and was in no fit state to drive me over (clearly I was too upset) and was unable to come with us on the family day out designed to take our mind off it. As a 'punishment' he agreed I could have another cat (I had been belly-aching for one for ages) as long as he didn't have to be involved in picking one. Star came from a rescue centre. She wasn't actually the cat I had gone to look at, but that one wasn't available as it was still nursing kittens. Star came straight up to me and started fussing and drooling, and I knew she was meant to be with us. I still offered the nursing mother a home once she was ready, in the event no one else selected her, whoever she went to live with one of her babies.  Needless to say despite that, my other half loves our baby girl as much as I do.

We moved house a year or so later, and within a week, we sadly lost Mason. We had been talking about getting a dog, but felt it was unfair on Mason (who we think was at least 21 years old) with him being so old. Instead of getting another cat, we decided this was the right time to have a dog. We got Toby a few months later, when he was 12 weeks old. He had been bred by a friend of ours who is a gundog trainer. My other half was clear he really wanted a Labrador. When we went to see the litter, he was the one I selected, and it turned out he was the only one who didn't have a home!

How old are they?
Toby will be 3 years old on 17th June.
As Star is a rescue we aren't entirely sure how old she is. We were told when we got her she was about 3, but we think she was alot younger, maybe 18 months old. As she grew so much we don't entirely believe she was a fully grown adult. She probably about 6 or 7 years old, but still seems like a baby to me.

What are some quirky things about your pet’s personality?
Star is a drooler, and I mean a real drooler. As she seems so young, we think she was also probably taken from her little really young. Drooling can usually be a sign of this. Whenever we fuss her she just dribbles everywhere! She beds with her claws a lot too. She loves to lay right on your chest, particularly when you are laid in bed.  She has a really bad habit for licking the side of the bed when she wants to get your attention (It echoes incredibly loudly!) She can be quite fussy when it comes to food, but she loves a McDonalds burger, and seems to know exactly what the bag looks like!

Toby isn't very confident for a Labrador. He's not particularly fond of new people. This isn't through lack of socialising, its more his personality, as when we first went to see him, he was the puppy who ran back into the cage when the others came to greet us! He loves to be on the sofa or on the bed, but as he knows he shouldn't so he curls up really small, as if we can't see him. He loves to work. His favourite thing to do is fly up and down a field retrieving and sniffing out things. He would literally do it until his paws dropped off. He enjoys a swim (when we allow it) but isn't a big fan of baths - although he will jump in no problem! He especially loves the rub down he gets afterwards. His favourite thing is a belly rub. He is able to recognise people's names (ask him if he wants to see Nanny, and see what reaction you get!) and gets quite upset if Star gets in his bed!

What does your relationship with your pet mean to you?
Toby and Star are, for me, essentially my children. If you've got kids (which I haven't) you will probably say its not the same relationship etc etc but I love and care for them. I even get a sense of pride when Toby does something clever, as if I actually had something to do with it. I know I probably sound a bit bonkers, but I love them both dearly. I worry about them being left at home when I'm at work, and whether they miss us or not. They, along with my other half are my little family.

What are some of your favourite past times with your pet?
I love training Toby. He doesn't really get much out of having a walk, he finds a bit boring in all honesty, but let him off and send him off to find things and he's in his element. I love to snuggle up with him on the bed (yes I do allow him up sometimes, I know I'm a terrible parent) especially in the winter when its chilly, and I'm tucked up with a book. Its great to watch Toby try to find snowballs too! Toby gives us an excuse to get out for a good muddy walk.

Star is a snuggler. She loves to sit on your knee whilst working (if you can get her away from the computer fans that is!) and I've spent many a Sunday afternoon with her curled up on my lap, Toby on my feet, with a good book and a cuppa. 

What are nicknames that you call your pet?
Tobe(s); Toblerone, Toby LeRone, Little Boy, Handsome, Boy.
Star. Starry Eyed. Baby Girl. Girl

Favourite toy?
Toby has a Kong, which he has had since he was a pup. It is literally the only thing he hasn't destroyed. His favourite treat to go inside is peanut butter. He also loves a 'puppy', which is basically any cuddly toy we give him. He usually pulls all the stuffing out until he finds the squeaker, then he just carries it around with him after that. He also knows the difference between his two toys and will go and fetch whichever one you tell him to.

Star doesn't really have toys so much. She does have some danglers and little jingle balls, but they are too small to be around Toby. She will chase any bit of fluff or paper that's around on the floor. 

I hope you enjoyed finding out about my furry friends. If you do this tag, let me know so I can check them out.
Finally I will leave you with this video of my little girl giving her big brother's ears a wash (just don't tell anyone they really like each other!) - it's filmed on my Iphone so not great quality but its not very long.

Wearing// Midi Skirts, Stripes and Spots

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

You know how sometimes an outfit works fantastically well the first time you wear it, but then you go to wear it again and it somehow doesn't quite work? This was one of those outfits, although rather than it being the clothes, I think it was more the hair that didn't work.

I first wore this outfit for a girls night out. I'd had my hair cut and coloured earlier that day, so I didn't need to restyle my hair, just do my make up. Whilst applying my make up, I pinned part of my hair up out of the way. Due to the massive amounts of volume my hairdresser had managed to get into my hair, I thought it kinda looked rather beehive-esque, so, considering my outfit choice, I embraced it. I got lots of comments about whether I'd had it cut more, or whether I'd had a hair piece put in.

I really wanted to share this outfit on my blog, but it was too dark at the time to take any pictures, so I wanted to recreate the outfit. Needless to say there was no way I could get the same amount of volume, so my hair lost some of it's oomph and then ended up looking just like a short crop. It didn't turn out quite as well as the first time of wearing this getup! Oh well, lets just detract away from that and check out these beauties! Pink, bows and polka dots, so many loves all in a shoe, with a high, but chunky (ergo sensible) heel. I'm still as much in love with these Office Betsey Bow shoes, as the day I bought them. They seemed like such a frivolous purchase at £60, when I first bought them some years ago, and I took some convincing re cost per wear by a friend, yet surprisingly, she wasn't wrong, and even a pair of black jeans and a blazer is pepped up by the polka dotted pink loveliness.  

Bloggers such as Alex and Char have long discussed the joys of dresses and skirts with pockets, and in this £5 Primark bargain, I've finally come to see what they have been raving about. I do have to check myself occasionally for standing hands in pockets, looking like I don't want to be there, but otherwise they  do come in handy, particularly on  chilly walks home! Finding the perfect skirt length is a current ongoing saga, as everything seems just that little bit too short. I'm not sure if it's me getting older and more self conscious or hemlines really are just getting shorter. Although it may just be finding the most appropriate length of skirt for work is the problem, as I will occasionally rock a knee skimmer!

Topping off this ensemble with this pink striped tee picked up in a charity shop, seemed to sorta of be the right thing to do. Now, sling a leather biker jacket round my shoulders and pass me a pair of big shades and just call me Sandra Dee!
Made With Love By The Dutch Lady Designs