Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Pastel Blues

Pastels are everywhere at the moment so I thought I'd embrace it too. I'm not really a pastel clothing girl but I'm definitely not against a few spring type accessories. These are my favourite picks from ASOS. The new save and shop list on there is such a good idea! The items do disappear after a while though...

I know number 1 isn't technically a pastel shade but I couldn't resist having it in my top five. I love the shell-like pattern and the simple chain. It could be worn on its own with a dress or piled up with lots of chains.

I've been looking at the bracelet (number 2) for ages. It's part of the disney couture collection on ASOS and I think it has the right mix of cute and classy.

The mint green watch is on my list for next piece of jewellery. My watch is definitely on the way out and I could do with a new one. This is the perfect update without being too expensive!

Number 4 has been on my wanted list for a while too and I'm fighting the urge to buy it. I think if it was a liiiitttle bit cheaper then I would have gone for it but the price is keeping me at bay for a while. I just think it would look so pretty with a white dress in the summertime.

Finally, the yellow bag is the type of bag I always look at. Plain, structured and big enough to fit in all of my things. I have lots of things. No really, it's ridiculous. I think I need to do some serious make up and bag item downsizing.

The title of this blog post not only relates to the colour scheme (obviously) but also to the Nina Simone album I've been listening to recently.

You might recognise this one...

My Stylistic Boutique

When I found My Stylistic Boutique on twitter and got talking to Jen, I was lucky enough to choose a piece to feature from her gorgeous necklace collection. I went for the antique crystal wing necklace and it fits in nicely with my already generous jewellery collection.

It was much bigger than I expected it to be but I think I actually prefer it like that. It makes it more of a statement necklace. The wing itself is about the size of my palm and it has loads of detail on the area which would be the feather. I love the crystals too because they're not overdone or tacky, they just add to the antique style and give it that extra something. The necklace looks like something you would buy in Topshop (but for much more money!) I'm all for independent companies and wearing something that wasn't mass produced so I'm really glad to have this piece to add to my other necklaces.

Jen currently has a 50% off sale on all necklaces so they're either £5 or £10 each - get them quick! She will also be getting some new stock in for summer, including rings and bracelets so I'll be keeping an eye out for those too.

If you want to snap up one of these pieces then click here to go to the shop. You can also follow Jen on twitter at @MyStylisticBou

Monday, 27 February 2012

I am one single grain of sand.

Monday always feels like the longest day ever. I just come home and want to crawl straight into bed! Quick blog post today as I'm feeling under the weather and want to get on with reading my latest book (Caitlin Moran's How To Be a Woman) and having a large cup of tea.

The Oscars Red Carpet Arrivals dominated Twitter last night as everyone gushed about the beautiful dresses and stunning celebrities. I've played catch up today and found four of my favourite looks to share. If I'm being honest then I think I actually chose these dresses because of the colours rather than anything else. I also like that the celebrities wearing them look closer to real women than some of the other scarily sculpted and waxy looking ladies who turned up. So here are the looks I liked:

Kristen Wiig in J. Mendel. I am in love with the nude colour and dark nails.

Penelope Cruz wearing Armani Privé - I love this lavender blue colour. Very fairytale!
Milla Jovovich in Elie Saab- one shouldered, shimmery glam!

Sandra Bullock in Marchesa - one of my favourite designers. I love the intricate gold pattern around the middle.
(Pictures from Harper's Bazaar)

The title of this post relates to the album I've been listening to recently. Colour the Small One by Sia is absolutely beautiful. The perfect chill out album after a hard day. 


Sunday, 26 February 2012

Oaty banana cookies

Baking on a Sunday is such a brilliant thing. I can listen to some music and mix up a treat at the same time. Today I decided to make some Banana Oatmeal cookies because 1) they have very few ingredients, 2) they are very easy to make and 3) I am trying to have a healthy week and these were my chosen treat!

To make these cookies you will need:

4 ripe bananas
230g oatmeal
150g chopped dates
50g chopped pecans
50g sugar
100ml vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 tsp salt

If you dont want to use pecans then you could always replace them with hazelnuts or walnuts, depending on your preference.

What I did:

Peel and mash the bananas in a bowl. If your bananas aren't quite ripe yet, then microwave them for about 30 seconds and you'll have easily mashable bananas in no time!

Mix the bananas and all of the other ingredients in a large mixing bowl until it has all blended. If your mixture looks too dry then add some more vegetable oil. Don't add so much that it makes your mixture greasy.

Shape the mixture into cookie sizes - this is where you can choose to have big chunky cookies or smaller thinner ones.

Cookies before baking
 Bake for 20-25 minutes at 190C/Gas Mark 5 and remove to cool when golden around the edges. Leave to cool on a wire rack. The temperature and amount of time you bake for will vary according to size but you should be able to judge it on when they start looking more cookie-like.

Told you it was easy!

They don't look amazing but it was my first attempt and they do taste really good! Crunchy, oaty with a hint of banana. YUM. The dark bits are the dates so if you don't like the look of them then you could always replace the dates with something else or leave them out altogether.


Thursday, 23 February 2012

You can be addicted to a certain kind of sadness.

It has been a long week back at work and definitely a long week until payday. Monday was massively improved by a bunch of flowers and then a giant batch of spaghetti bolognese that I whipped up. The best thing to eat when running out of money is definitely a bit of good old spag bol. Mushrooms, onions, garlic, peppers, chopped tomatoes (from a can) and some mince all mixed in together and added to spaghetti is one of my favourite easy meals to make. I really want to do some more baking this weekend so I've been trying to think of some tasty recipes I can experiment with.

A few things I've been thinking and doing lately:

1. Money (and lack of) and all the stress it brings with it.
2. Watched the film Somers Town - interesting and would recommend it.
3. The pictures and comments on Whitney Houston's life and death are too much and very insensitive.
4. I really want that tiny dog on The Only Way is Essex at the moment!
5. Loving the website Hello Giggles - a great way to waste time.
6. Considering baking some banana oatmeal cookies.
7. Very excited about trips to see friends in Bath and Cardiff!
8. Halfway through re-reading The Great Gatsby and looking for lots of new books to read.
9. It's probably time to start eating healthily again. I can't get away with 'stodge' in nice weather.
10. I really, really, really can't bear that 'twilight' song. Awful.

And here are a few picture style thoughts and things I'm liking at the moment too:

If I had a dog then he would definitely look like this.

I'll always love Perry.


Rings, nails, amazing legs. Want all of them please.

The amazing Adele.

Just cute.
Diet inspiration.

One day I will do this and have a midnight picnic.
Style inspiration.

I want to be here.

Simple style love.
That's about all I have the energy for today.

Images taken from

Monday, 20 February 2012

"I hope she'll be a fool--that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool."

I love a good floaty dress and Marchesa never let me down. This year they've really embraced fringing, draping and gorgeous silvery colours. I'm currently re-reading The Great Gatsby and these dresses make me imagine Daisy and Miss Baker with their white dresses rippling and fluttering in the breeze. I would have loved to have lived in the roaring twenties. These dresses are not exactly everyday wear but they are fanciful, ethereal and totally beautiful.

It looks almost like angel wings aww

I think this is my favourite one!

If you haven't read The Great Gatsby then don't worry, a new film is coming out this year with Leonardo Dicaprio and Carey Mulligan so you can catch up. Personally, I think the book will always be better than the film so I hope they do a good job of it.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Moules Marinières

First things first, I am not a really experienced cook. I normally do the basics things: lasagne, spaghetti bolognese, stir fry and so on but I'm more of a cupcakes kind of girl. I've been scared about cooking seafood before now, just because I've heard it can go so wrong if you don't do it well. However, I've been wanting to try out cooking mussels and it just happened that Le Bistrot Pierre (who I blogged about a week ago here) sent me a recipe for their Moules Marinières. Me and my boyfriend cooked it together but I will admit he did most of the work and I did some chopping and irritating photo taking! We added some extra things to the recipe just to make it more to our taste, so this is how we did it.

You will need:

3500g Fresh mussels
200g Butter – unsalted
500ml Cream – whipping
400g Shallots or onions
500ml Medium dry white wine
60g Parsley flat (but we used curled)
2 x Lemons (large)
2g Bay leaf
10g Thyme
1 Chilli
3 Cloves of garlic
1 Celery stick
A big crusty baguette to mop up the delicious juice

What we did:

First we cleaned the mussels. If you haven't done this before then this basically involves pulling off the beard (the small bit it uses to attach itself to rocks) and then checking they're all closed. If a mussel is open or cracked then don't eat it!

Then I chopped the lemon, parsley, garlic and chilli in preparation for later. Onion and celery was chopped on another board.

Next, we put the onions, celery, butter, white wine, half of the chilli and the bay leaves into the pan with the mussels and steamed them until they were about half opened. This takes about two minutes. Have a glass of wine while you wait.

Then we added the cream and some of the lemon wedges and let it boil until the mussels opened fully.

When done, we added the rest of the chilli, parsley and lemon wedges and gave the pot a shake until it looked like this...

We served it quickly and ate it immediately so there was no time for pictures! My favourite part was using the bread to mop up the delicious creamy sauce left at the end. I really enjoyed my first mussels experience, especially knowing that I can do that at home easily enough. The only lengthy part is preparing the mussels but after that it's a quick and easy dish to make. It's not really salty and fishy like some people would assume. If it's seasoned correctly then there are so many different flavours. I'll definitely be having this again!

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Bag lady

To lessen the pain of not being at fashion week, I've been looking at the latest goodies on ASOS. These are my latest favourites. Can you tell I like satchels? I think my favourite of the bunch is the pale blue clutch on the bottom left. It may be £60 but it would be a good way to wear the spring pastel trend without having to dress head to toe in it. Failing that, the pale blue bag with gold bird on is only £20. I can't really justify buying a new bag at the moment seeing as I only just got my lovely little Mulberry Alexa. She will be number one for a while yet!

Fashion fix #20: Miranda Kerr in Australia

Just a quick post today. Have been very busy getting caught up on work and cooking a feast (which I will be blogging about later) so haven't had much time to ogle fashion or get too envious about NYFW and LFW. I've been trying to avoid twitter too because the pictures and excitement from other lucky bloggers (while wonderful) is also upsetting for poor little me who is stuck at home!

Miranda Kerr is my latest style crush and she has just done a catwalk show in Australia at The David Jones Autumn Winter 2012 season launch. I will be doing a more personal style post on her later but for now here are some of the pictures from her catwalk.

Above: Summery and fresh looks. You need a serious tan to pull off that shade of orange!

Here: Metallics

I love the dress to the left and the way it just floats.

 Below: Evening style - Miranda is wearing a strong feminine look but also works the androgynous suit well! Is there nothing she can't do?

Personal style: She always looks like she has just stepped out of a health spa. All glowing cheeks and wide eyes. I like how simple this outfit is. It does make me want to eat lots of sweeties though. Spring candy colours are going to make my sweet tooth go into overdrive!

Images not mine... obviously!

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