InstaDiary: Week 12

Post date: Sunday 29 December 2013

Christmas at Cadbury Garden Centre // Joe's Christmas present // The best stocking filler EVER // Looking back through my A Level Photography book // CHICKEN // Father Christmas // First photo on my iPhone // Festive nails // Black Milk Harry Potter swimming costume.
KJ xo

Girls' Christmas Dinner

Post date: Wednesday 25 December 2013

After much stress and organisation, me and the girls finally got together on Monday for a Christmas meal. Having a Christmas meal with friends means a lot to me, because the one I have at home is always sub-par and leaves me feeling slightly cheated. 
We spent a week trying to decide which day would be best for everyone, and then another three days trying to decide what everyone should bring, before someone suggested that we just order a curry instead. Of course that idea was quickly shot down by me, and the Judas who suggested such horrors was forced to prepare and cook the chicken as punishment. 
Isy (aka the hostess with the mostess) had laid the table beautifully, which got me in the festive spirit for all of five minutes before I was informed that a chicken takes two hours to roast... at which point, a curry didn't sound so bad after all. However we powered on through (well the others did, I just pointed my camera in everyone's faces whilst they flapped around getting everything ready) and the meal was well worth the wait. 

Festive Party Outfit

Post date: Saturday 21 December 2013

I'm sorry for my lack of posts lately, this is the first year that I have experienced real Christmas stress; between working, Christmas shopping, seeing friends who have returned from university, a couple of birthdays, making a thousand Christmas decorations and trying to organise a girls Christmas dinner, things have been a bit hectic this month.
I have taken multiple trips to town these past few weeks in order to try and find gifts for everyone, and every trip has ultimately ended with me lusting after various items that I'd quite like to add to my own Christmas list. This embellished dress from Topshop has caught my eye on a number of occasions; it's elegant and sparkly and perfect, and something that I would never wear because I don't go to the kind of parties that require an elegant, sparkly and perfect dress. Boo hoo. But a girl can dream, right? I put together this 'Festive Party Outfit' whilst wishing that maybe one day I'll have a chic event to go to, that requires a pair of Kurt Geiger heels or a Karen Millen clutch. If not, then I guess I'll have to buy it all anyway because really, who can resist all those sparkles?!

Cross Embellished Skater Dress - Topshop, £55 // MOTO Bleach Western Jacket - Topshop, £45 // Glacier - Kurt Geiger, £100 // Crystal Encrusted Box Clutch Bag - ASOS, £140 // Nail Varnish in 'Blizzard' - Models Own, £5 // Rouge Allure Velvet Lipstick in "La Somptueuse" - Chanel, £25.

KJ xo

DIY Christmas Decorations: PomPom Robins

Post date: Sunday 15 December 2013

This DIY is a bit of a guilty pleasure for me; my two previous tutorials and the final one I have coming up next week are all relatively quaint and substantially fulfil my vision of Kathryn's Homemade Christmas. However this one is goofy, childish and absolutely adorable.  
In primary school, we were kept busy in the weeks running up to Christmas with an extensive amount of festive crafts. Most of these projects eventually ended up in the bin, however my mum always pulls out the pompom robins I made when it's time to decorate the tree. There is something really charming about them, and so this year I decided to make some more.

You will need: Two round objects to draw around, one larger than the other (or a pair of compass'!) // Brown wool // Red wool // Black, white and brown felt // PVA glue // Cardboard (I used a cereal box) // Scissors // Pen.

InstaDiary: Week 11

Post date: Friday 13 December 2013

All my Grandma's sewing stuff that she gave me // Skyping uni friends on the big screen // Sunset in Bristol // Finally wearing my Batman dress // The best popcorn in the world // Chicken, sundried tomatoes and croûton salad // Pom-pom robin // Chicken, chorizo and sautéed potato salad // New Topshop t-shirt. 

KJ xo

Bonobos Man-Tastic Gift Guide: The Answer To Every Girl's Prayers

Post date: Wednesday 11 December 2013

Is anyone else majorly struggling to think of something to buy the men in their life this Christmas? Brothers, boyfriends, dads, friends... They're impossible to shop for! If, like me, you are on the brink of picking up a nice pair of socks to replace the ones you bought them last year, you might want to take a look at this "Man-Tastic Gift Guide".
Bonobos has created a holiday gift guide for men; a sort of Holy Grail, if you will. If you too are crazy about organisation, then you'll agree that one of the most appealing things about their gift guide is that they have kindly sorted it in to six colour co-ordinated sections, three of which I have chosen to feature on my blog. 
From cosy jumpers and hats to cuff-links and suits, skis and axes to alarm clocks and coffee; Bonobos really has something for everyone, or perhaps something for "the man who has almost everything". You can even purchase a trip to space (or that nice pair of socks that you originally wanted to buy). 
So, I suggest you avoid the painful task of heading to your local mall to fight the frantic Christmas shoppers in order to purchase something for a man who will most likely be ungrateful anyway, and check out the Bonobos Man-Tastic Gift Guide instead!

My Winter Lips

Post date: Monday 9 December 2013

'Tis the season for lipstick, is it not? There's something comforting about applying a thick, dark layer of lipstick on a cold Winter's morning. I used to wear this look every day to sixth form in the colder months, and have recently started playing around with it again. 
Along with burgundy nails and tartan scarfs, it's not the most ground-breaking look for Winter, but it works for me. As I've said before, I don't really know all that much about beauty things, I just like to play around with putting make up on my face so I apologise for this not being the most professional of tutorials. Here we go...

I apply Vaseline and then go on to do the rest of my make up, so it has time to moisturise my lips. I like the "Rosy Lips" one, as it gives a nice tint.

Links à la Mode: The IFB Weekly Roundup

Post date: Saturday 7 December 2013

After stalking the Independent Fashion Bloggers website for a good few months, I finally plucked up the courage to submit a post to their Links à la Mode section. After doing it I sort of forgot about it and when I went to check my emails today I discovered I had made it to the roundup! MAJOR excitement went down, and what with it being midnight there is no one awake for me to share it with - so I'm hoping one or two of my readers is awake! I am so excited to be listed alongside so many great blogs, thanks IFB!


Glamourous Giving

How I Style: Bodycon Dresses

Post date: Wednesday 4 December 2013

About a year ago this Lazy Oaf Batman dress was everywhere, thanks to Cheryl Cole being papped in it. I love graphic pieces, especially those depicting movie characters, and so I knew I needed it in my wardrobe. However, I definitely could not bring myself to spend £60 on it so I bought some kind of label-less rip-off from Amazon. (I'm pretty sure I'm breaking a million fashion blogging rules there by admitting to owning a rip-off, oops!)
The main reason I didn't want to drop 60 big ones on it is because I never wear body-con clothes. They're so restricting and cling to my belly, making me feel guilty for not looking like the size 4 model that was wearing them on the website. As I clicked the "confirm purchase" button, I knew deep in my heart that I would never wear it, but alas I bought it anyway. 
For a year it has sat in my wardrobe, moping about the fact that all its friend's get worn everyday of the week, leaving it feeling lonely and useless. A few days ago I pulled it out and decided that I was going to have to wear it one day, and so I searched through my closet to find things I could wear with it. I pulled out my go-to red velvet skater skirt, and navy chunky knit sweater and a light bulb went on in my brain; I could wear it as a top with the skirt, and as a skirt with the jumper! Ingenious, right?
So now I have two ways to wear this dress, and maybe I will finally be able to get the £10 I spent on it, worth out of it.

Christmas At Cribbs

Post date: Tuesday 3 December 2013

Here in Bristol we have two main shopping centres; Cabot Circus and The Mall Cribbs Causeway. I think most Bristolians (apart from over-50's and chavs) would agree that for 91% of year, Cabot Circus is a more preferable shopping environment. However, if there's one thing The Mall does well, it's Christmas.
Every year they transform their car park in to a Winter wonderland; thousands of lights, a merry-go-round, a gigantic castle, fake snow, an ice skating rink and a mini Christmas market. 

DIY Christmas Decorations: Decopatch Stars

Post date: Sunday 1 December 2013

As I write this post, I am becoming everything that I hate; My pet peeve is when I see a really great DIY tutorial that I want to get stuck in to straight away, only to realise that everything you need for it won't be found lying around the house. Who has time to go all the way to the store when there is serious crafting to be done?! So, I apologise for the fact that you probably won't be able to find all the things needed for this tutorial in your kitchen cupboard. However, if you are thinking of making some Christmas decorations this year I highly recommend taking a big trip to your local craft shop (or logging on to eBay) and filling up a basket full of stuff so that when you feel that creative urge to make something Christmassy, you'll already have everything you need!
This is my second post in my "DIY Christmas Decorations" series, and it was the one I was most nervous about. I've never tried Decopatch before and quite honestly I'm still not really sure what it is. I didn't look at any tutorials so I just found myself PVA'ing decopatch paper on to paper mache stars (Spoiler alert: I've just summed up the whole tutorial for you in one sentence).
I only made 5 of these stars, but there are lots of these paper mache shapes available; hearts, Christmas trees, candy canes, baubles etc. You could buy lots of different shapes and decorate them all with different patterned paper to create some continuity on your tree!

Nails I Need

Post date: Saturday 30 November 2013

Having become a bit obsessed with Barry M Nail Paint's lately, I often find myself perusing the Boots website, lusting after the shades I want to purchase next. Now that I could name pretty much any polish in the Barry M collection, I decided it was time to branch out and start stalking other brands. 
Of course, my first stop was Chanel; at £17.50 their nail varnishes don't come cheap but they are definitely the most hard-wearing polishes in my collection. I found two gorgeous colours, "Taboo" is a much more obvious shade for this time of year but "Orange Fizz" would certainly brighten up any Winter outfit.
I desperately need a black nail varnish in my life, as they are so versatile and great for creating statement nail art. With Barry M Nail Paint's being only £2.99, I couldn't help putting their black one on my wishlist along with a beautiful pastel pink.
I don't actually own any Models Own nail varnishes, and after sitting at my laptop gawking at their entire collection for a good ten minutes, I have to ask myself why. Seriously, why? Just the names of their collections are magical; Wonderland, Beetlejuice, Fireworks, Fruit Pastel, Mirrorball, Tropical and Kaleidoscope. Need I say more? I picked out "Blizzard" because to me, it just looks like Christmas in a pot. "Indian Ocean" also reminds me of an icy Winter's morning and is pretty much the most gorgeous shade I've ever seen. 
I also had a look on the Essie website, as I've seen many beauty bloggers raving about their products. I picked two pastel shades, purely because I have vowed not to purchase any dark red/ burgandy/ purpley-red this season. 
So now I must go and restrain myself from spending £67.98 on nail varnish. Maybe I'll put them all on my list for Santa instead...

What colours are you loving this Winter?
KJ xo

"All Shopping Eventually Leads To Shoe Shopping."

Post date: Friday 29 November 2013

Excuse the Gossip Girl quote, I couldn't resist.
After recently purchasing a new pair of boots, I apparently decided that I was on some sort of shoe-shopping roll and found myself scouring the internet for a new pair of flats to add to my collection. Somehow that ended with me buying some 2" high, T-bar shoes from Topshop, after being lured in by the sweet scent of a student discount and free postage. One look at these and I knew they'd be mine, I'd figure out what I could actually wear them with later...
When they arrived, I instantly started trying them on with every item of clothing I own. To my surprise they actually go with quite a lot; oversized t-shirts, dresses, and my beloved skater skirts and dungarees. Now all I need is some frilly ankle socks to wear with them and I'll be good to go! 

Charity Shop Haul

Post date: Monday 25 November 2013

I'm not sure what the official laws of blogging say, but I'm pretty sure you have to have more than 3 items to do a haul post. But hey, rules were made to be broken and managing to find 3 decent items in a Bristol charity shop is such an achievement that I had to do a post about it.

InstaDiary: Week 10

Post date:

Winter pub nights // Joe and his new best friend // My favourite Winter jumper // Dance trophy // Trying to convince myself my hair has grown // Everything I need to hand-make Christmas decorations // Sunset on the Downs // Memory box // No description necessary. 

I just wanted to take the opportunity to say thank you to everyone that has followed/read/commented on this blog as I reached 50 followers today! That may seem like a pretty tiny milestone to some people; but when I was sat in bed at 1am a few months ago and decided to bite the bullet and start a blog, I couldn't imagine 5 people wanting to read it let alone 50! So thank you to everyone that has left a kind comment or clicked the "join this site" button, as it really means the world to me!

KJ xo

DIY Christmas Decorations: Fabric Hearts

Post date: Friday 22 November 2013

This Christmas I am on a mission; I must hand-make every decoration we hang in our house. Why? You may ask; because I am sick of trying to create a chic yet cosy home out of my mum's mismatched, tacky decorations. This year I am taking matters in to my own hands, and I will succeed. 
For the past week I've been running round like a headless chicken trying to purchase everything necessary to hand-make an entire Christmas. As I sat down to start my first set of decorations, I realised this was the perfect opportunity to start a little series on my blog. Therefore, every week leading up to Christmas I will post one tutorial... This may be more for my own entertainment than for yours! 
I decided to start with these fabric hearts, as you can make them entirely out of things from around the house if you wish. These are really great because if you choose not to use Christmas fabrics then they can be hung up in your bedroom all year round! 

Wearing my Winter Wishlist

Post date: Thursday 21 November 2013

I have posted both a "boots" and a "coats" wishlist so far this Winter, and I have since done something rather out of character and gone ahead and purchased two of the items I was lusting after! 

A Box of Memories

Post date: Tuesday 19 November 2013

I finally got around to painting my memory box this week, which gave me the chance to rifle through all of the things I've saved over the years. If I had it my way, I'd keep every card I was ever given, every train ticket I ever bought and every essay I ever wrote. However that would be insane and I'd probably end up on one of those shows about hoarders. Therefore my memory box is filled with an array of things that represent happy memories, or achievements... Unfortunately that means the card I received from that family friend that I've never met on my 14th birthday didn't quite make the cut.
Taking a trip down memory lane made me feel all warm and fuzzy and so I thought it would be nice to share a few of the less personal items from my box, in the hopes that it would encourage you all to dig up some of your own memorabilia... Or just leave you thinking that I'm a bit strange. You know, whatever. 

InstaDiary: Week 9

Post date: Tuesday 12 November 2013

Barry M "Peach Melba" // My camera settling back in after a visit to the repair shop // Soup delivered to my bedside // The latest addition to my room //  Peanut butter hot chocolate // Pancakes with bacon and maple syrup // Topshop delivery // New H&M boots // Smoked salmon fishcakes with lemon mayo.

KJ xo

Vintage Time Keeping

Post date: Monday 11 November 2013

Yesterday, I took my mum to a vintage sale/flea market that was being held at our local cricket ground. I took her mainly for a day of bonding and because I knew she'd love to look at all the antique home-ware, but also in the hopes she might loosen the purse strings if I spotted anything I liked! 

Winter Wishlist: Boots

Post date: Friday 8 November 2013

As I've previously mentioned, I'm not really a "shoe person". I kind of just amble through life, buying a new pair of Converse when necessary and occasionally picking up a pair of crazy sparkly trainers when they catch my eye. However, I've always had a fascination with boots; chelsea, biker, cut-out, chukka... as long as they're not thigh-high, in my opinion, they're boot-iful. 
I have only ever owned one pair of "real" boots before (by "real" I mean actual sturdy boots from a shop that isn't Primark), and I absolutely wore them to death. They were a brown lace-up pair from Topshop that I bought when I was 15 after weeks of saving, and I still find myself reaching for them today on a chilly Winter's morning. However after having to have the sole replaced twice, I decided that maybe it was time to start looking for a new pair. 
I hadn't really done any proper boot-browsing as just looking at other, younger, prettier models felt like cheating on my faithful companions. However this weekend, during a particularly unsuccessful shopping trip, I spotted a pair in H&M. They were fierce, they had laces, they had zips, they had a chunky heel and there was only one pair left on the shelf, in a 7.5 (embarrassingly, my exact size). Impulsively, I bought them. They're not exactly "me" but I guess that's what I like about them; not to mention the fact they can be used to add a bit of spice to pretty much any outfit.
After purchasing them, I seem to have caught boot-fever. Me being bored turns in to me perusing boots. Me trying to write blog posts and articles turns in to me perusing boots. Me waking up turns in to me perusing boots...
So here are some of my favourites at the moment, including the pair I've already purchased. I also went ahead and purchased the Topshop jacket that I put on my coats wishlist  which makes me think I should stop making wishlists and start trying to save my money!
What's your favourite style of boot this season?

Lace-up Boots - H&M, £29.99 // SHORT - KG by Kurt Geiger, £130 // Velvet Blue Desert Boot - Asos, £79 // Arvey Double Buckle Boots - Topshop, £78.

KJ xo

October Beauty Favourites

Post date: Wednesday 6 November 2013

It's the start of a new month and that means it's time to review last month's favourites! Last month I enjoyed a lot of beauty products, so have a peek at these bad boys...

InstaDiary: Week 8

Post date: Sunday 3 November 2013

Certificate for my barista training // My latest creation // Afternoon tea and lemonade with Eloise // My first attempt at a waterfall braid // A cute notebook my Grandma gave me // Chicken and bacon salad. Again. // Joe looking proud with his first pasta bake // Vogue getting me in the Christmas spirit // Mine and Joe's midnight feast.

KJ xo

Skater Skirts: A Love Affair

Post date: Saturday 2 November 2013

Is owning nine skater skirts a little extensive? It's not, right? 
Ok it totally is. 
Whilst most bloggers do "My Shoe Collection" posts, I have decided to do one on my collection of skater skirts. Partly because unless you want to see a lot of glittery trainers, a post on my shoe collection would be pretty lame, and partly because I think it's high time I addressed the fact that I have an issue. 
I, Kathryn Jamshidi, am addicted to skater skirts.

Winter Wishlist: Coats

Post date: Friday 1 November 2013

I've never had a real winter coat before; I've never been able to bring myself to spend £60 on something to keep me warm, when layering up a few jumpers from the charity shop can do the job just as well. However, this year I have found myself lusting after a lot of coats. I think now that I'm 18 the adult thing to do is to invest in a good quality coat that will see me through the many cold, dark Winters ahead (if not only to stop my mum saying "Aren't you going to be cold?!", every time I leave the house).
The top of my wishlist is a fur coat with cat ears from ASOS. Don't ask me why, I just really think I need a fur coat with cat ears in my life. Whilst the idea of snuggling up inside something so fluffy is totally glorious, I have a heartbreaking feeling that white fur might not be the most practical of materials to wear during a wet Winter. Therefore, I might have to plump for a classic Topshop parka. They're durable, timeless, and easy to style. The only thing stopping me indulging in one is the fact that all 16 year old hipsters are running around in them at the moment, and so looking at parkas can make me a little bit ansty. 
I added the long fur coat and the blazer because I thought they were pretty, and if minimum wage was a little higher I'd like to purchase all of these. For now I shall sit patiently and wait for an ASOS or Topshop promo code to fall in to my lap so that I can pick one of these up guilt-free.
Curly Faux Fur Coat with Cat Ears - ASOS, £56 // Hooded Lightweight Jacket - Topshop, £60.00 // Long Fur Coat - Zara, £79.99 // Standout Blazer Jacket - Forever21, £27.75.

What do you think I should go for - parka or fur? What style of coat are you wearing this Winter?
KJ xo

What's In My Bag?

Post date: Wednesday 30 October 2013

I've been struggling with writers block a bit lately; my life pretty much consists of going to work, sitting in pubs or seeing my boyfriend... hardly ground-breaking blogging material. However I made a commitment to myself to post regularly and so I decided to jump on the bandwagon (about a year late) and do a "What's In My Bag?" post. I'm not really sure what the point of these posts are, I guess they're just for nosey people who like to know what personal items people lug around with them on a daily basis. In which case, this could be pretty disappointing as I've just reviewed these photos and realised that I am in fact a rather dull person. So on that note, let's begin!

Halloween Make-up Tutorial: Evil Fairy

Post date: Tuesday 22 October 2013

Today I was playing around with some ideas of what I wanted to dress up as for Halloween and I finally decided that being an evil fairy was my calling. As much as I love fake blood and inventive costumes, this year I wanted to go for something a little more dainty, that allowed me to utilise some of the make-up that I don't wear day to day.

Major Make-Up Organisation

Post date: Sunday 20 October 2013

For ages now I've fantasised about owning a huge vanity case with all sorts of compartments and pockets so that I can have a nice neat, organised make-up collection. It took a while but I eventually found this one on eBay which answered all my prayers. I don't have a particularly huge selection of cosmetics but what I do have needs to be organised or else I go a little bit crazy.

InstaDiary: Week 7

Post date: Saturday 19 October 2013

Newly organised dressing table | Cosiest duvet EVER | My vintage finds in Oxford | My ever-expanding wall | Making use of my fairy lights | Attempting cane rows but I have too much hair | Reminiscing on Newquay | Sunset on the way home from Oxford | Organising my make-up in my new vanity case.
KJ xo

Visiting Oxford and the Death of my Camera

Post date: Wednesday 16 October 2013

A catchy and positive title, I know.
Yesterday me and my mum took a little road-trip up to Oxford to visit my brother, who is currently in his second year of university. This trip excited me for two reasons; he had promised to take me to Christ Church where a scene from Harry Potter was filmed, and Oxford seemed like a prime location to take lots of beautiful photographs. 
I was snapping away all morning, completely in awe of the beauty of the buildings. Everything from the university was undeniably grand, whilst the town itself was rather quaint. Once again, I was mocked for wanting to photograph my macaroons, and eyes were rolled when I stopped to capture a lamppost; but I didn't care because I was in my element. 
After stopping for lunch, visiting some vintage clothing shops and looking round some of the colleges, the moment I had been waiting for arrived. Christ Church. In Christ Church there is a staircase which features in Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone. You know, the one on which Draco and Harry first meet and Harry gets his sass on and is all "I think I can tell the wrong sort for myself, thanks." There is also a Great Hall, which was JK Rowling's inspiration for her own Great Hall, and also where Alice in Wonderland was written.
After gaping in awe at the magnificent staircase for a few minutes, I whipped out my camera and tried to snap a few photos. Nothing happened. I turned it on and off again, still nothing. I took the battery out, still nothing. I detached and reattached the lens, still nothing. My auto-focus was well and truly buggered, meaning my only option was to use manual focus which scares the crap out of me, because I don't know how to use it. There was tears, there was sour faces, and there was a lot of anger at the insurance company who gave me what I have now discovered is a faulty lens. 
So the fun stopped there for me because, as my mum says, I can only really see things through a lens. I mean, if you dumped me in the middle of a Cathedral I'd be bored to tears but if you gave me a camera then I'd have the time of my life in there. Anyhow, here are some of the pictures I did manage to take, I hope they capture the essence of my trip nicely.

10 I Want

Post date: Sunday 13 October 2013

Being the enthusiastic gal that I am, I have always had a thing for strongly expressing my love for TV shows/films/singers/generally everything. Whether it be emblazoning Taylor Swift lyrics up my arm, or wearing a t-shirt with a Blair Waldorf quote sprawled across it, it doesn't matter; I get mocked either way. 
However, it seems the fashion world has finally caught up with me and has decided to start producing items with great big stinking photos of Daniel Radcliffe's face on the front, and I love it. I do believe we all have Tumblr to thank for this; I'm pretty sure it was their photoshopping geniuses that first put some of our most beloved characters on to clothing, before Black Milk took over and did it the proper way. You know, with actual fabric and all that. 
So far, I have only really found two brands that are producing good quality, striking pieces; Glitters For Dinner and of course, the infamous Black Milk (links below). Both have Harry Potter and Star Wars ranges, whilst Black Milk also has a Lord Of The Rings collection, and I am coveting a lot of their pieces. Who wouldn't want to walk around proudly adorned in their Gryffindor stripes? And, let's face it, if you're trying to tell me you don't want Orlando Bloom on your body then you're only lying to yourself. 
I found the other four jumpers on a glorious Tumblr called SweaterJunkie. They have an Etsy shop (link below) but unfortunately only stock a small range of jumpers, none of which feature the likes of my best pals Serena van der Woodsen, or Mary-Kate and Ashley. I'm holding out hope that they soon begin to produce more of the designs that feature on their Tumblr page, because there is nothing I need in my life more right now than a jumper with Taylor Swift's face in the armpit crease.
What do you think of these collections; super cute or just kinda lame? Would you wear your Hagrid on your sleeve?
1. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Jumper - Glitters For Dinner, £30 // 2. Harry Potter "Let The Magic Begin" Jumper - Glitters For Dinner, £30 // 3. Gryffindor Leggings - Black Milk Clothing, £50 // 4. Marauders Map Leggings - Black Milk Clothing, £50 // 5. Tatooine Swimsuit - Black Milk Clothing, £60 // 6. Legolas Swimsuit - Black Milk Clothing, £60 // 7. Aria, Pretty Little Liars Jumper - 8. Serena, Gossip Girl Jumper - 9. Taylor Swift Jumper - 10. Mary-Kate and Ashley Jumper - Sweater Junkie, not available for purchase.

KJ xo

"Beauty Things I Suck At" Tag

Post date: Saturday 12 October 2013

I was tagged by Jasmine to do the Beauty Things I Suck At tag, so here it is...

DIY: Upcycling Old Skirts

Post date: Wednesday 9 October 2013

Upcycling old clothes is one of my favourite things to do. Whether it be bleaching denim, attaching studs or simply adjusting something I bought in the charity shop so it fits; there is something extremely satisfying about taking a mundane item of clothing and making it fabulous.
A few weeks ago I had a real craving to go digging around in my local charity shops. However, as I mentioned in this post, it is nigh on impossible to find anything wearable in the charity shops of Bristol. This mid-length skirt caught my eye because the pattern is pretty groovy, and the shape of it means it can easily be adapted in to a little skater skirt (and we all know how much I love those!)
As I began to work on reinventing it, I decided that I would photograph the process so I could do a tutorial on it - if you'd like to see more tutorials on upcycling clothes then comment down below!

The original skirt had an elasticated waist and is a circle shape so it falls nicely. This is the kind of style you want to look out for if you want to make a skater skirt. 

InstaDiary: Week 6

Post date: Tuesday 1 October 2013

Annual wardrobe organization | 8oz beefburger with hand-cut chunky fries | Joe bought me a cabbage for our anniversary | A glass of rosé wine in a very British pub | Jamie's Tuscan Salad a la Sarah | Birthday card for my brother | Showing off my sewing skills | Marinated chicken breast with patatas bravas | My new dress is adorable.

KJ xo

My First Pay-Cheque: Haul

Post date: Monday 30 September 2013

After a couple of weeks of saving I decided it was time to finally splash some cash and treat myself to lots of new pretty things; in the words of Georgina Sparks, "I've been so good for so long, it's time for me to be bad."
So, with my wages safely deposited in the bank and my debit card in hand I made a beeline for Topshop, Zara and Urban Outfitters. I have to say, I was left largely disappointed with what was on offer in some of my most trusted stores. No one wants to pay £48 for a plain knit jumper, or £52 for a skimpy playsuit. Topshop, Urban Outfitters; shape up or ship out! As for Zara, everything in their collection was gorgeous but I'm simply not brave enough to invest in floral print trousers or a chiffon blazer.
However I have apparently taken a liking to plaid, unwittingly purchasing two items in the pattern before getting home, taking them out the bag and being asked "What are you, a farmer?". 
I also made an obligatory pit-stop at Primark to see if I could snap up any bargains and ended up buying more there than anywhere else. I love this bag; I know deep down that it won't last the Winter but how could I resist such a gorgeous cobalt blue? I won't try and defend purchasing such a basic t-shirt, or another set of cosy socks... or the Christmassy penguin-print pants that I thought best not to photograph. 
Last but not least I scoured Boots for two items on my beauty hit list; Revlon ColourBurst Lip Butter and Barry M Gelly nail varnish. Thankfully I found them both or else there would of been hell to pay after my less than satisfying shopping trip.
I headed home feeling a little deflated, sort of like I'd waited all day for a delicious roast dinner only to be left disappointed by soggy veg and dry meat. With only ten items purchased and less than a week's wages spent I vowed to go on another filthy great shopping spree before Christmas. 
Until then, here are some pictures of what I bought:

My Hair Routine

Post date: Tuesday 24 September 2013

One fateful day in 2009, I grew bored of my long, poker-straight hair and begged my hair dresser to do whatever it took to breathe some life in to it. However as soon as the final snippet of hair floated to the floor, I regretted my decision. Sure, thanks to my new layers I became the proud owner of beautiful curls and waves, but they came at a price... I was now also the not-so-proud owner of a rather offensive bob-cut. 
It may have taken four painstakingly long years, but I have finally managed to grow it back out to its original length, whilst maintaining it's new-found texture.
 Me and my hair have been on quite a journey over the past few years and I have learnt a lot about how to care for it from the many tellings off I received from my hairdresser, but I have finally got myself in to a routine that leaves my hair healthy and happy; so here it is!

I wash my hair everyday; I know people say that you're not supposed to do that but the only way I could avoid getting my hair wet in the shower would be to wear a shower cap, the thought of which makes me shiver. I condition my hair everyday but only shampoo it every other day, because shampoos strip the natural oils from your hair and can leave it feeling dry. 

Denim Dreams

Post date: Saturday 21 September 2013

Skater skirts are my go-to item; whether it be red velvet or adapted from one of my mum's old maternity dresses, with braces attached or with swans on; I'll wear it. They're versatile, appropriate for every season and occasion, and can be styled in a thousand different ways. However, despite my apparent fetish for them I have never been the owner of the most infamous of them all; the denim skater skirt. I have coveted one for years, but I could never quite bring myself to part with nigh on £28 for something so... simple.
A few days ago, my grandma brought round a bag of old clothes for me to dig through. As well as discovering some rather cute vintage jumpers and blouses, I pulled out an ankle length denim skirt. It was as if all my prayers had been answered; I immediately grabbed my scissors and sewing machine, and embarked upon a merciless denim massacre. An hour later the skirt was 10" smaller, 15" shorter and with fresh elastic in the waistband. 
Feeling ecstatic about my latest creation, I decided to wear it out that evening and couldn't resist taking a few snaps of how I'd chosen to style it. However, with this being my first outfit post I was rather nervous about taking and posting these photographs and thus used my artistic licence to ensure I captured a sense of the outfit without having to inflict my face upon you all. 
Do any of you also have a love affair with skater skirts? Or any item of clothing? If so, how do you choose to style them?

InstaDiary: Week 5

Post date: Friday 13 September 2013

Closest thing I can find to my name on a Coke bottle | Pub quiz (we came 3rd... out of 6.) | Yummiest chicken and bacon salad | New Vans | Hot chocolate in my favourite Harry Potter mug | Interview outfit... | ... I got the job! | Gromit hunting | My first wage packet!

Autumn Styling

Post date: Wednesday 4 September 2013

I did one of these posts at the start of Summer, and what with it being the start of Autumn I've decided it would be fun to do one each season (kinda playing it fast and loose with the word "fun", there). 
I'm pretty sure if my mum saw this post she would weep tears of sorrow at how many black pieces I'm coveting at the moment. I realise I've just made her sound a little racist, but the majority of my wardrobe is black and grey and she has spent the last six years begging me to "wear some colour". I think the mint green jumper is the only splash colour of colour needed for this outfit, thank you very much mum (she says whilst realising it looks like something someone might wear to a funeral). 
ANYWAY, I like it and I hope you do too. What trends or pieces are you liking this season?
KJ xo

Full Swing Maxi Skirt - Nasty Gal, $68.00 // Knitted Bobble Stitch Jumper - Topshop, £36.00 // Imitation Leather Bag - H&M, £19.99 // Bleeker Spike Chain Necklace - Urban Outfitters, £18.00 // MADHATTER Metal Trim Boots - Topshop, £40.00 // Crochet Lace Frill Socks - ASOS, £4.00 // Big Floppy Hat - Topshop, £28.00

Hunting for Gromit

Post date: Tuesday 3 September 2013

I'm not really sure why, but every year in Bristol some artists decide to paint some things and then they get displayed in some places for some time and some people like to try and find them all. Last year it was gorillas, this year it's Gromits. With me and Joe embarking on our gap year and his younger sister about to go back to school, we decided to take her out to enjoy the last dregs of Summer and help her bring her total of uncovered Gromits from fifty-two to sixty. (There's eighty in total but one of them is in London and ain't nobody got time for that.)
Despite what I may have previously said about the idea of Gromit-hunting making me want to gouge my eyes out, it was actually a lot of fun. There were eight Gromits located in the city centre, and so it was actually quite pleasant to take a leisurely walk around town to visit them all. Each Gromit is decorated in a unique way; some, such as Gromit Lightyear and Grosmos were super sassy, others such as Lancelot could have tried harder. 
If you want to read more about the Gromit Unleashed project, click here.

(I noticed when looking through my photos that I am wearing the exact same Topshop skirt and Urban Outfitters jumper that I have been wearing since Christmas. Can I still call myself a fashion/beauty/lifestyle blogger?)

InstaDiary: Week 4

Post date: Sunday 1 September 2013

Waffles with ice cream at the Cider Press | Giving my dungarees and outing | Cuddling my new baby | Cute birthday present wrapping | Cookie dough | Massive excitement at my new felt tips | Reminiscing on the first photos I took two years ago with my SLR | Fun times on my sewing machine | Lady Gaga "Born This Way" face paint.

Festival Essentials

Post date: Friday 30 August 2013

I know that festival season is coming to an end, so this post may well be rendered pointless, but I have finally received a camera from my insurance company and felt the need to post something. Arrest me. 

I have only ever been to three festivals, so I'm not going to sit here and pretend to have the same festival-packing expertise as the likes of Kate Moss. However, this year was the first time I managed to pack efficiently and so I'd like to think I have now nailed the essentials. 
I rue the day I packed for Glastonbury and decided that taking two tonnes of playsuits, dresses, skirts, shoes and jumpers seemed like a bright idea because "I might wear them". I also rue the day I packed my entire make-up collection for Shambala because "I might have my picture taken". To sum up, when looking back on previous packing experiences, a lot of ruing is done. 
However this year, something clicked in my brain and I realised that I didn't need to take four vest tops, or two mascaras, or three pairs of black leggings. That's right, one pair of black leggings is enough! Who would've thought? So here I have put together what I thought were the essentials (well, not all the essentials... I didn't fancy trying to take an arty shot of toilet paper for my blog...). 

The Photographer

Post date: Monday 22 July 2013

On Saturday night, my friend's mother threw a rather fancy birthday bash at the Avon Gorge Hotel. There were burgers, sausages, chicken and ribs sizzling atop the barbecue and thirty bottles of pink fizz doing the rounds. Everyone had donned their most glamorous gowns and mingled alongside the Clifton Suspension Bridge. It was the kind of event I'd always dreamed of attending, sort of like the ones I've spent hours watching, and re-watching, on Made In Chelsea. And Gossip Girl. And reading about in blogs. And Fitzgerald books. 
However I was not just there as a guest, I was also the official photographer. This is a title that I have coveted for years, and instilled both excitement and fear in me. As a shy person, it is not in my nature to walk up to strangers and stick a nine inch long lens in their face before blinding them with a flash. I was much more comfortable photographing the location, and capturing unsuspecting victims from afar. I therefore came away from the party worried that I had not fulfilled my role; after looking at my photos though, I am rather pleased with them, I just wish I had been brave enough to photograph a wider selection of people! However, as this was my first attempt at event photography it has taught me a lot about how to effectively capture the ambience of an event through a lens and left me positively drooling for another go. 

I did make sure that me and Joe got a picture of course, mainly because I was in love with my new dress. I had originally planned to wear long-sleeved black velvet but the recent heatwave sent me in to a sweaty whirlwind of panic as I attempted to find an alternative outfit (woe is me as I forgot to also order an alternative bra and ended up with pink and black polkadots on show for the whole night). I ripped apart my wardrobe but, of course, nothing was appropriate so I logged on to Asos and ordered this cheap and cheerful swing dress (my first ever Asos order, may I add). I paired it with 5" strappy heels from New Look, and Chanel polish in 'Pirate' on my fingers and tootsies. 

InstaDiary: Week 3

Post date: Thursday 18 July 2013

Cosy sock day | My Primark playsuit from Summer 2011 that I have just rediscovered | Rimmel Coral Romance | BBQ in the park | Spain collage | My matching sunglasses, thanks to the free pair that came with Cosmo | 4 of my 5 a day | Trying on all my dresses in order to find one for the party on Saturday (I ended up buying a new one instead) | Martha's Canon 550D that she has lent me until I get one back from the insurance. 

Sun, Sea, Sand and Stolen Goods.

Post date: Wednesday 17 July 2013

I feel tremendously guilty for not having blogged for three whole weeks; not because anyone would have missed reading my posts but because I promised myself that I would not become lax with my blogging.
Two weeks ago, me and twelve friends took a flight out to Spain for a week of trying to find shade, sampling the local McDonalds and KFC branches, drinking the finest wine at 89 cents a carton and trying not to kill each other. I had eagerly packed my Cannon 450D, with which I take all the pictures for this blog, with the intention of capturing all the mouthwatering food, the fabulous outfits and the beautiful architecture. The part of the holiday I was most excited about was getting home, curling up in bed, sifting through hundreds of photos and deciding which ones to share on here and with my family and friends. 

Chicken and Bacon Salad

Post date: Saturday 22 June 2013

I'm not usually one for salads; they're boring, and eating them makes me feel like a rabbit. However, this recipe is a delicious blend of salad, vegetables and meat and perfect for lunch on a summer's day. I put this recipe together by accident one afternoon whilst trying to make use of all the leftovers in the fridge and have been obsessed with it ever since. Not being the most adventurous of eaters, I stuck to the basic salad essentials but you could easily add some more exotic ingredients such as carrots, or those caper things. Anyhow, I felt the need to share it and if you try it out, let me know!
KJ xo

InstaDiary: Week 2

Post date: Friday 21 June 2013

Another week another Dutch braid | Last season's Topshop bikni that I bought off eBay for a not-so-bargain price | New running shoes | Post-exams lunch date at The Burger Joint | First watermelon of the summer | Potato salad | Glitter ombre nails | Showing off my latest creation | Chocolate Forest Gateau in the sun.

Strawberries and Cupcakes

Post date: Thursday 20 June 2013

Seeing as temperatures last night hit a high of a muggy 24 degrees, me and my friends decided to celebrate the end of exams with a summery barbecue. I took my camera with the intention of taking some picturesque shots of the garden, the food and cocktails. However I quickly realised that I don't actually know anyone who drinks cocktails and after receiving the sarcastic comment "I'm sure people know what bread looks like" I decided to put the camera away for the night and don a tea-cosy instead; if you can't beat them, join them!