Friday, 30 December 2016

2016 Favourites

So 2016 was a bit of a shit show. I can't wait to put it all behind us and bring on 2017. My standards have been set pretty low for next year so it's bound to be a good one. Anyway, despite this year's disappointments, there were some awesome things that happened. Here's a list of favourites so we can finish off the year talking about the good stuff.

Favourite Song: Heize ft Dean - And July
I've been getting into Korean hip hop this year and Heize and Dean are two of my favourites. And July is a chill song that always suits my mood, so I've been listening to it almost every day since it came out. Heize and Dean also collaborated on another amazing single this year called Shut Up and Groove. If they do another collaboration next year it just might make my 2017.

Favourite Music Video: Jane Zhang - Dust My Shoulders Off
I'd never heard of Jane Zhang before and I'm not sure how I ended up watching the video (probably just a recommended click on YouTube) but when I did, I was impressed. Jane Zhang is a Chinese singer and this is her first US single. The video moves through various famous paintings which is so fun to watch. The song is also pretty catchy!

Favourite Show: Planet Earth II
If you follow me on Twitter this will be no surprise. The film crew were incredible to get all those amazing shots and David Attenborough is a national treasure.

Favourite Movie: Zootopia/Zootropolis
I haven't actually given this one that much thought (I enjoyed quite a few other movies just as much) but I feel like it's one of the most important movies to come out this year. The whole movie is a not-so-subtle reflection of racism and stereotyping, definitely not just another silly talking animal movie. The world needs to sit down together and watch it.

Favourite Game: Pokemon Moon
Pokemon celebrated its 20th anniversary this year, and it's sure been one big party. There was huge hype around Pokemon Go, but my game of the year has to be Sun/Moon. I've been a fan of the Pokemon games since I played Pokemon Red when I was a kid. They've made some changes to the usual game format this time around so it's been a refreshing experience mixed in with the nostalgia.

Favourite Book: Bad Monkeys by Matt Ruff
This was a hard one. I still haven't finished Murakami's 1Q84 so I had to disqualify it from this year's favourites, so I was going back and forth between Bad Monkeys and Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto. Both books are incredible and quite different which made it hard to choose between them, but I had to pick Bad Monkeys because it's just the sort of book I've been looking for. It's one of those where you read it and think 'wtf is going on?' half the time - my favourite genre. It's an action packed thriller about a woman called Jane Charlotte who works for a secret organization. She's in the Bad Monkeys division where her job is to find and kill evil people.

Favourite Outfit Post: Slip
I'm so glad I caved and bought this Topshop slip dress since these things are so comfortable and easy to wear. Slip dresses might have been a huge 90s trend but for this post I brought it up to date a little. This outfit post is one of my favourites because I wore the dress to my graduation a few weeks before it, which is probably my biggest achievement of the year!

Favourite Skincare Product: Egyptian Magic All Purpose Skin Cream
Usually around this time of winter my face is dryer than my dad's sense of humour but this cream has saved it. I only wear it at night since it's very oily (as my pillowcases now know well) but I wake up with any looming spots of dry skin having disappeared. It's quite pricey but it's been well worth it this winter.

Favourite Make Up Product: Innisfree Powerproof Liner
It might not be my favourite ever liner but it's definitely the best I've tried this year. I reviewed it back in September and keep meaning to repurchase it. It's so easy to apply, long-lasting, and it's not too expensive.

I think that's a wrap. What were some of your favourite things about 2016? Or would you rather just forget it all happened? Either way, happy new year to all of you and here's to 2017!

Saturday, 17 December 2016

I've run campaigns against the light

Jacket - Therapy (old) / Top - Emoda (old) / Skirt - M&S
Photos by Faaizah
Lyrics in title from I Made a Promise to the Moon by Jason Webley

So we're at my last outfit post of 2016! I dressed up festively for the occasion and everything. Black counts as festive around here. I wore this to dinner at Dishoom with some friends I went to uni with (feels weird typing that in past tense). I paired my black velvet skirt with my gorgeous Emoda top. I love the small ruffles on the high neckline - a feminine touch without going overboard. Not that I have a problem with going overboard - it is the party season after all. I like a casual contrast to a fancy outfit, so I threw on a denim jacket. Thankfully the weather wasn't too cold that day so I didn't freeze during the shoot.

King's Cross has been my favourite place to hang out recently, mostly for its places to eat. It's also a great place to shoot outfit photos. These were taken opposite Google's London HQ. Google if you're reading this, I'm the crazy lady that was loitering outside your offices the other day. Hire me. I also have to give props to Faaizah for meeting me before dinner to take these photos for me. She had to deal with bad light conditions and a light drizzle, and on top of that she has to put up with me on a regular basis. So a big thank you to you Faaizah, and a thank you to all my friends who've made this year bearable. And a big thank you to you reading my blog! May 2017 treat you right.


Wednesday, 30 November 2016

This November

So I was thinking about my monthly favourites series and realized it's not something I can sustain since I don't buy new things every month. Instead, given everything that has happened this month and even this year, I'm changing things up. I'm gonna start posting reflections at the end of each month, some of them might include things I've bought, some of them might not. My blog has always been a make-things-up-as-I-go-along type of place so we'll see what happens.

Despite it being my birthday in November, I'm always prepared for a little bit of gloom during the month. It's an awkward slot of time between Halloween and Christmas, the Winter blues start to settle in, so even if I'm super cheerful it's likely that the people around me won't be. This November, however, has really outdone itself on the doom and gloom scale. I honestly didn't even know how to react on the 9th. Laugh, cry, scream into a pillow? All of the above?

What's bothering me most is the feeling that the world is going backwards. Back to times when racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia weren't called out on. Back to times when they were 'normal'. And I know the world wasn't a perfect place before Brexit and Trump came along - it would be stupid to think that. But some of the things that have been said by US and UK politicians lately, people who are representing these countries on the world stage, have just been so fucking unacceptable. And what's worse is how this is causing people to think that their views are suddenly okay, and that they can go out and be racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, Islamophobic, bigoted. I'm just so sick of it and I'm sure you're all sick of it too.

Anyway, putting idiocy aside, Craig Benzine (a.k.a WheezyWaiter, my favourite Youtuber) made a great video the day after the election talking about the divide between rural and urban America and some of the other factors that led to a Trump victory.

This month I also met a man called Ben Bellman at the Tate. I was at the Radical Eye exhibition and he started talking to me. His speech was a little frantic and repetitive but we had a nice chat. Turns out he's an ex-stuntman who was involved in a terrible accident that almost killed him and affected his memory. There's a short interview with him in the Guardian. To come out the other end of that and be enjoying life is incredible.

To end this post, I have a monthly favourite to share. I got Mooncop by Tom Gauld for my birthday, a short graphic novel about a police officer on the moon. The colony is dwindling, so there isn't much for him to do up there. It's a sad but funny read, and if you're struggling to think of Christmas gifts for people it would be a great option.

Monday, 21 November 2016

Gold Heels

Jacket - Hong Kong / Top - M&S / Skirt - New Look / Boots - Topshop (all old)
Photos by Faaizah

So we're back to that time of year where outdoor shoots require pretending to not look freezing without a coat on. I know this look would've been better without tights but there's a chance my legs might've been blue by the end of the shoot which wouldn't have made for good pictures.

Anyway, here's a slightly grungy look that I wore to a birthday lunch. The prevalence of the 90s trends have really gotten to me - my online shopping carts are full of slip dresses right now. I like a subtle mix of prints so I thought my floral skirt and striped jacket would pair up nicely. I also really like that they're both long pieces, though being 5'2" there's always a risk of getting proportions wrong and having my frame just completely swamped. I once tried on a huge fluffy coat which I loved, but it kinda looked like I was being enveloped by some sort of monster. The highlight of this outfit has to go to the mirror details on my heels. Gotta love a small touch of gold.

Sunday, 6 November 2016

Checks Out

Jumper - United Colors of Benetton / Skirt - Whistles / Hat - Emoda  / Belt - H&M (all old)
Check skirts and turtleneck jumpers seem to be an ever-popular autumn combo. It's stuck around for a while too, seeing as these pieces are both vintage and from my mum's wardrobe! The jumper has faded a little over the years but the skirt is still in great condition. I spent ages deciding what jewellery to pair with this look but in the end I decided to forgo any in favour of this awesome Emoda hat - which I'm surprised hasn't made an appearance on the blog yet - and a simple belt.


Saturday, 29 October 2016

Act natural

oversized shirt

oversized shirt

I've been doing some indoor outfit shoots for convenience but I thought I'd get creative with some props this time to make things more interesting. I had fun setting the self-timer and shuffling into position to pretend to read Monocle magazine. I also recommend not pretending to read Monocle since it's pretty awesome if you're interested in design, global affairs, business, and all that good stuff. The Rouleur magazines aren't mine but they sure have pretty covers (it's a magazine about cycling if you're interested!).

When was the last time I wore jeans on this blog? It must've been a while ago. Like a lot of people, I don't always like how my legs look in jeans and sometimes I go months without wearing them. But thankfully my ability to go "fuck it, my legs look fine" has grown over the years, so my two pairs of jeans get more outings than they used to. Anyway, this is one of my go-to casual outfits. The oversized shirt is from Pomelo, the jeans are old Zara ones, and the shoes are old Topshop slip-ons I wear all the time. I added a choker - it's really just a piece of ribbon - to amp up the 90s vibes.


Thursday, 20 October 2016

Day Trips out of London - Rye & Winchester

I really don't see enough of the UK. Aside from my trips to Devon once a year to visit family I don't get out of London much. I've been trying to change that and if you are too, here are two great places to go on a short trip.


Monday, 10 October 2016

Procida Photo Diary

My family and I weren't sure which island to visit when we were in Naples. Capri seemed like an obvious choice but we were put off by the thought of the summer crowds. Ischia was another option, a less glamorous but interesting island. In the end it was Procida that won our vote; our decision swayed by seeing photos of the multi-coloured harbour Marina Corricella (above).
As we pulled into Procida's harbour, we knew we made a good choice. The ferry arrives at Marina di Procida which is lined with several shops and restaurants, which makes it a great place to hang around while you're waiting for the ferry back.
The walk to Marina Corricella only takes around 10 minutes. Once you get to the Santa Maria delle Grazie church, you'll find the steps down to the Marina. There are a couple of restaurants on the harbour with loads of fresh seafood dishes. My mum was very impressed with what she ordered, and if she's impressed with a place's seafood you know it's good.


Wednesday, 28 September 2016

September Favourites

After some strangely warm days in Britain, autumn finally arrived. My feelings keep alternating between 'YES layers and hot drinks season!' and 'why's it so dark and cold already'. I should probably just enjoy this in-between weather before we take the sharp turn into winter where the only thing I'll be interested in is my duvet.


M&S Skirt
I wore this beauty in last week's outfit post and I'm certain it'll be making another appearance on the blog soon. Hats off to M&S for putting out this gem. It's black velvet so it moves with an understated shimmer, making it an all-occasions kind of piece.


Big Bud Press Pins
I finally decided to join the pin party and picked up a few from Big Bud Press. I got two gems and a planet for good measure. Big Bud Press has a great selection of pins, clothing, and patches and they even gave me two stickers with my purchase. Annoyingly, a customs charge was slapped on the package so I won't be rushing to order anything from the US again anytime soon.

Graphic Novel

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson
I picked up Nimona on a whim since I'd heard of the author and wanted to check it out. I knew it was going to be good but I wasn't prepared for how good. Nimona is a powerful shapeshifter who joins supervillain Ballister Blackheart as his new sidekick. Blackheart isn't a typical supervillain; he's more concerned with exposing the Institution, the 'good guys' in charge of protecting the kingdom. Nimona on the other hand is keen on wreaking havoc and destruction much to Blackheart's dismay. It's got action, magic, and science and a story that will have you hooked.


We Got This
I've been listening to We Got This pretty much exclusively all month. It's a show where actors Hal Lublin and Mark Gagliardi settle arguments about the most important issues in our world, such as Coffee vs. Tea or which day of the week is best. While I love podcasts that tell stories or interview cool people, sometimes you just want to listen to two friends being hilarious and discussing which shape of pasta is best. It also has the best theme song in the world.

Sunday, 18 September 2016

That's a wrap

wrap skirt
wrap skirt
wrap skirt
wrap skirt
wrap skirt
Top - The Kooples / Skirt - Mango / Shoes - Topshop (all old)
Photos by Faaizah

So I unlocked the hand on hip pose. Hooray! You'd think after almost four years of blogging I'd know how to pose by now but nope. I'm also still hoping for the day I can pull a serious face that I can take seriously.

These photos were taken a little while ago when I hung out with Faaizah. It was nice to catch up, brunch, and hunt for ice cream. I wore my Mango wrap skirt which I scored in a recent sale. I'm suprised it was even on sale considering wrap skirts and ring details are both huge trends right now. I went for a good old all black look, pairing the skirt with an old Kooples t-shirt and my Topshop slip-ons.


Sunday, 11 September 2016

Innisfree Powerproof Brush Liner Review

innisfree liner

In the liquid liner world K-Palette is king, but I thought I'd try out this worthy competitor.

innisfree liner

The packaging: Very simple and nothing really special. There is a spring in the lid which I guess is to help keep you from ruining the brush tip but it does feel a little bit strange whenever you try to put it back on.

The application: I'm a big fan of brush liners and I find the thin tip easy to use.

innisfree liner

The colour: I got mine in black.

The road test: It stays on pretty well! Some days I come home and find that it's smeared a bit at the edges but usually there's nothing too noticeable. Sadly, there is a problem I have with this liner which is that it sometimes dries up while I'm using it. Shaking it can get a little more out but sometimes you just have to wait for it to work properly again.

The verdict: It's a great liner that's long lasting and easy to apply. It's such a shame that it dries up sometimes. Aside from that, it's almost on par with K-Palette's 24 Hour Liner.

Sunday, 4 September 2016

Pompeii Photo Diary

One of the things I got most excited about on my recent holiday to Naples was that we would get to see Pompeii. It was absolutely incredible to go and get a glimpse at how people lived 2,000 years ago.
Pompeii was buried under the ash of Mount Vesuvius' eruption in AD 79. The town was first rediscovered in the late 1500s but nothing much came out of it. 1748 marks the beginning of proper exploration and excavation, and today there are 44 excavated hectares of Pompeii (out of 66).
A lot of the statues are later works that have been placed here on display. They might not be historically accurate but I think they add to the grand atmosphere.

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Denim Daze

Top - Pomelo / Skirt - Hong Kong Fa Yuen Street / Shoes - Topshop



Photos by Louise

It's only when I blog that I realize how feminine often I dress. Not that I mind it, I'm just surprised when I look at past outfit photos. Then I get surprised at being surprised because you'd think you'd notice a pattern in how you dress everyday without needing to see the photos side-by-side. I think it comes down to my affinity for skirts, and that stems from finding it hard to find trousers that fit. Seriously, if anyone knows where a short girl can get some culottes I'd appreciate it!

Anyway, enough of my ramblings and onto the outfit. I never thought I'd find a denim shirt I'd like but this one from Pomelo won me over. We have our issues, mainly that it's hard to tuck it in and keep it looking nice but I do love the slightly puffy sleeves and front ties. I put the outfit together with the shirt in mind but I think the Topshop shoes ended up stealing the show.

Side note: I thought there was a bug on my shoulder in the last photo which made for a pretty good shot.

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