Friday, 31 July 2009

Colourful dog grooming boom sweeps China.

Image and article found here.

"The current pet boom in China has prompted dog owners to flock to beauticians to pamper their pets with everything from basic shampooing and hair-trimming to nail care and hair dye. Here a bichon frise and a poodle both coloured with various dyes are pictured walking with their owner in Wuhan, Hubei province."

I'm not sure if I like this! Hopefully the dye they are using isn't harmful to the dogs. Also, are people just buying pets because of celebrities like Paris Hilton? It saddens me. I hope all these people read up about these animals or speak to someone about them before purchasing them. We don't need anymore doggies being abandoned or left in shelters.

Additionally, I think the above dog is more of a Bichon Frise (x Poodle?) mix, since they are not that tall. One of my dream dogs is an apricot Miniature Poodle. I seriously love canines.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Easy like Sunday mornings.

Nom nom nom.

Summer is a great time to pack a basket full of goodies and drive over to a park or meadow or beach with your partner/friends and have a relaxing day of munching and gossiping. Sudoku, checkers and reading are also very civilised picnic activities. Everyone's taste is different but here are my favourite picnic treats:

Elderflower juice: It's so delicious and the perfect refreshment for a summer's day. Homemade lemonade is also good. Tea is a good accompaniment, but keeping it warm can be a problem.

Potato salad: I don't even like this normally but somehow it works when you're sitting on the grass. It also helps that it's not too messy. Pasta salad is also a tasty option since you can add anything you like to it.

Sandwiches: Using baps instead of normal sliced bread makes this more special for me. Fillings really depend on my tastebuds at the time but I adore some fatty chicken, bacon, avocado and mayo filling!

Pork pies: Not healthy in the slightest but it's not like I eat them all the time so it's a nice summer treat. They don't even need heating up which is even better.

Berries: Raspberries, blackberries and blueberries are my fruit of choice since there is no need to peel anything and no pips/seeds to spit out. For the same reason, grapes are also a great choice.

Mini cakes: To avoid bringing too much cutlery get some of Mr. Kipling's finest or some Cadbury's mini rolls. The bakery section of any supermarket is always full of mouthwatering sweets.

Alternatively... order a KFC bucket with chips, beans and coleslaw sides, a bottle of Pepsi and their cheesecake dessert and BOOM; instant picnic.

PS I enjoyed this article about the Famous Five and their picnic foods! Reading it made my stomach rumble.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

High street lust #8.

Sorry about this lame collage. They are actually pretty hard to make. Anyway, I really cannot decide whether to buy this lace vintage blouse or not! Not sure if it's worth £40 but it's 100% silk apparently. Somehow it's machine washable?

In a funny way, I am totally buzzing off the suede skinny trousers (£90)! To keep the outfit sweet, I'd wear some massive bird stamp earrings (£60) and studded mary janes (£70) with a leather tassel detail clutch (£38).

Not sure if over-accessorising works here, but you could add a linked enamel bangle (£9), a wrapped leaf ring (£5) or a gold sequin headband (£5). For extra eye candy, a suede fringe gilet (£50) or wing sequin jacket (£120) is sure to do the trick!

Monday, 27 July 2009

Ahoy tharrr.

T-shirt - Gap
Cardigan - H&M
Skirt - American Apparel
Tights - Marks and Spencers
Shoes - Topshop
Bag - Mulberry
Hairclip - Claire's Accessories
Nail varnish - Laura Page
Glasses - some Japanese brand

I am usually extremely boring and fairly casual for work (white T-shirt + cardigan + black pants + subtle Converse for comfort) but I couldn't find my black trousers this morning so I wore my pencil skirt. I thought it would be unnerving wearing a skirt to work, but I don't think I was perved on too much. The Mulberry bag doesn't really suit me, but I can't get rid of it now considering how much it cost...

Should I buy a navy pencil skirt from AA? I like how you can also wear it as a tube dress. And should I get another shiny high waist skirt (like in this photo)? Or a cotton spandex one? I love the high waist skirt in coral ice, but that really isn't my colour!

PS I'm having trouble with my Google friend connect blog following thing D:

Sunday, 26 July 2009

It's about time for my arrival. WUT.

Shirt - Gap
Shorts - Gap
Socks - Primark
Hat - Topman
Shoes - Topshop

Admittedly, I just bummed around this weekend so this isn't really what I wore. It is, however, one of my favourite outfits. I love pairing these shorts with a nice white blouse or polo in summer. Yes, the shorts are rather short but they elongate my legs? Also, I never knew the pinstripes on them were red, green, blue and yellow until I took the below close-up photo.

The hat is a new purchase from Friday. I probably should have bought this before my two holidays, but I was only really looking for a capeline type hat back then. Not sure if I should keep it. The crown is a bit high and I'd prefer a wider brim to shield me from the sun. Yesterday I had milk + Baileys and a packet of salt & vinegar whilst catching up with "Home and Away". Sometimes it's nice just to lounge around the house.

My first week at work has been quite good. The staff are all nice and my tutor is so cool and laidback (and cute!).

Saturday, 25 July 2009

Marianne + Manhattan Dolls.

Last night after work I went shopping for my friend's birthday present. Okay okay, I also saw an amazing coat online at Topshop and I wanted to get that too but they didn't have it in stock. Not even in the Debenhams or Selfridges concessions. Anyway, I stumbled upon Topshop's A/W 2009 collection. It's not my style at all but I loooove it! It's called 'Marianne'. It's glamourous boho rock chick with velvet, leather, suede, sequins and metallics galore. Divine!

'Manhattan Dolls' is also an amazing collection with similar features. The sequins, draping fabrics and exaggerated shapes thrill me and seduce me. I'm not much of a trend person but I do appreciate well executed collections.

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Doctor doctor! I feel like an Egyptian... Are you in de Nile?

I gotta say, I took an awesome photo!

I had an awesome time in Egypt last week. My family and I went on a cruise down the Nile (Luxor to Aswan and back) as a graduation celebration. I hear there are 350+ cruise boats on the Nile, so there's a lot to choose from if you're planning to go. The weather was soooo hot but it was still fantastic and I saw some amazing sights. Here's a few of my must sees:

Abu Simbel: A temple built by Ramses II dedicated to himself! He made himself a god and had this awesome temple cut into the rocks. You have to travel several kilometres through the desert to get there. How did they create such masterpieces all those years ago?! Random trivia: Ramses II also found time to have 198 children with 35 wives.

Tomb of Tutankhamun: It's in the Valley of the Kings on the west bank of Luxor (the west is where the sun sets and therefore the west represents the afterlife). Paying to see a corpse is a bit creepy, but his golden sarcophagus is also there. Everything else is in Cairo museum. This is the only tomb that was found intact ie. tomb robbers didn't manage to ravage it.

Luxor Temple: Follow the sphinx road from Karnak temple and you'll reach Luxor temple. I think this was the main temple back in the ancient times, when Luxor was the capital of Egypt and where the pharoahs ruled from.

Philae Temple: To get to this island temple dedicated to the goddess Isis, you have to take a motorboat. It's quite a romantic and ethereal location. They also have a sound and light show on at night in four languages.

Edfu Temple: Said to be the most well preserved of all the temples. This one was actually built when the Greeks ruled Egypt (but they had to worship the Egyptian gods to prevent rebellion). This temple is dedicated to Horus and celebrates his battle over his evil uncle, Set.

Pyramids + sphinx: I didn't actually get to see the only remaining wonder of the ancient world but I plan to go there one day! Giza is just a bit too far from Luxor. I already can't wait to go back to Egypt.

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

High street lust #7.

One good thing about having a full-time job is the money you earn. I can't wait to have a regular income so I can buy pretty garments like this gorgeous bustier ruffle dress (£70) from Lipsy. I think the satin ruffle layers are so sweet and fantastical. The above dress is in nude, but also comes in white, pink, red or rainbow leopard ruffles.

With such a detailed skirt, you don't really need to accessorise a lot, otherwise it'll be overpowered. Just a simple quilted clutch bag (£15, was £30) with a round jewel cluster ring (£7, was £12) is all you need. Alternatively, a single bracelet like the large bow stretch bracelet (£7, was £14) or a slim set of 3 charm bracelets (£10) will also do the trick. I also adore the vintage cluster charm necklace (£7, was £17) which highlights the nude coloured ruffles on the dress. If it gets a bit chilly, throw on a pleated collar mac (£75) or some cropped wet look leggings (£12).

Dresses by Lipsy can look like they are for the blonde extension + fake tan kind of girl but they really do have some gorgeous designs. Check out the VIP wire frill hem dress (£145) or the VIP fan pleated dress (also a crippling £145) if you don't believe me. Drool.

Monday, 20 July 2009

Don't upset the rhythm.

Dress - Sharei Lamar
Cardigan - American Apparel
Tights - Marks & Spencers
Shoes - Clarks
Handbag - Chanel
Glasses - Afflecks

On Saturday night I went to my friend's house for dinner. She made gammon steak with roast potatoes and sweetcorn, yum. Afterwards we played mah jong. On Sunday I went out for dim sum and wore pretty much the same outfit. Sunday was my last ever day being a student. Today was my first day at work in the big wide world. It was okay. My work clothes are so ugly. I took some photos, but they are far too unstylish to post online.

I actually think the cut of this dress is highly unflattering but I adore the fabric! It makes me feel like an extra in Pride and Prejudice (Colin Firth version).

Sunday, 19 July 2009

I swapped him for an iPod.

Shirt - Topman
Trousers - Topshop
Belt - Miss Selfridge
Shoes - Gabor
Umbrella - Tesco
Bag - Cancer Research charity shop

The shirt belongs to my brother. He wore it to my graduation and for some reason I was compelled to wear it on Friday when I went to the bank, McDonalds and for a haircut. The shirt actually fit pretty well! My original 'bag' for the day was an envelope from a congratulations card but swapped it later in the day.

Also, I watched Bruno. It was okay. Borat was way way funnier.

Saturday, 18 July 2009

I so affirm.

Dress - AX Paris
Shoes - New Look
Tights - Primark
Hair bow - Claire's Accessories
Bracelet - Accessorize
Bag - Cancer Research charity shop

This is the dress I wore underneath my graduation gown on Thursday. I love it! I first saw it in January when I was walking through Debenhams to use their toilet. Sadly, I didn't have any money so I waited until April when my friend bought it for me as a birthday present. I'm just a sucker for pretty lace things. After the ceremony, my family and I went to the supermarket. We looked a bit out of place in our suits and pretty dresses.

Possibly deep down, I wanted this dress because I was influenced by Blair's eyelet lace dress for the Bass brunch in season 1. Saying that, I did originally want the black version of this but white looked so much prettier.

Friday, 17 July 2009

Bring me flowers in the pouring rain.

My grandmother arranged for my dad to buy me a bunch of flowers for my graduation. They are so colourful, I love them! It's sad when they start to wilt though. There are also some lilies, but they haven't opened yet.

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Bikinis for the less well endowed.

You can probably tell which one is for the smaller bust...

It's not a problem for people with a decent sized breasts, but being rather flat chested, I find it very hard to find a bikini that doesn't make me look completely prepubescent. If you're in the same boat as me, here's a few things I've learnt:

Avoid bandeau bikinis - I don't know what happens, but you become an ironboard as soon as you slip on one of these. It might be the way it wraps around your boobs.

Opt for triangle bikini tops - the triangular shape gives you some definition.

Wider straps - create an illusion of a plumper bust. Thin stringy straps seem to highlight how flat chested you are.

Cups - only work if they are in your bra size 28B, 32A, 34AA etc. Don't buy a size 8 padded bikini top if you don't fill it properly.

Decoration - frills and ruches are supposed to give the appearance of curves. I'm not really sure if this is true, but there's no harm in it.

Light/bright colours - take away from your shape. Weirdly, neon colours make eyes forget that you don't have a pair of bouncing watermelons. All people think about is the colour.

Plunging V-necks and halters - are also meant to create an illusion of curves?

Well, that was a short article. It's a shame there are so many bikinis for the 'bigger woman' but so little choice for people on the opposite end of the spectrum. I am still on the quest for the *perfect* bikini. I don't know if it will ever be found.

PS Onepiece swimsuits are just as hard to find! Most of the rules above can also be applied.

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Yalla yalla, habibi!

Multiway dress - American Apparel
Shoes - Gabor
Sunglasses - Ray-Ban

So I've been in Egypt on a Nile cruise (Luxor to Aswan) for a week. Here is something simple I wore in the morning before my flight home. I made it into a strapless dress with ties around my chest to make it an empire shape. I think some people thought I looked prettiest on this day. They probably wondered why I made such an effort for the last few hours but I never intended to look 'nice'. I just figured this dress would be easy to convert. Later, I put a T-shirt on underneath and wore the dress like a dungaree dress for the journey home.

T-shirt - Gap
Shorts - Topman
Belt - mother's
Shoes - Gabor
Hat - Muji
Sunglasses - Ray-Ban

In the morning before my flight, we went on a camel ride. They suggested wearing trousers or long shorts, but I hadn't packed either so I wore my brother's huge shorts and secured it with my mum's belt. It was probably better to wear my Converse, but I didn't want to look too manly so I wore my smarter shoes. Was the camel ride fun? Well... the views were pretty but it was too hot and my bum was bruised after!

My trip was amazing. I shall write a bit about it next week!

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

High street lust #6.

Why did I not check out Accessorize when I was doing my holiday shopping? Oh gosh, I adore practically every piece in their summer 2009 collection! It's hard to find nice onepiece swimsuits, but this white lurex stripe (£25) one is so glamorous!

For cover ups, I fell in love with the oriental blossom flutter sleeves kaftan (£28), but the bandini print sarong (£15) is a cheaper and still pretty alternative. I have always wanted a big floppy hat and this leather thong crochet braid one (£20) really fits the bill. Accessorize always have gorgeous bags and the happy summer folk embellished beach bag (£30) is no exception.

Fun accessories include the mixed charm seagrass flip flops (£12), a cutwork wooden pink fan (£3), princess Jasmine's Arabian anklet (£8), a super cute love letters ring (£4), tortoiseshell plastic chain temple sunglasses (£15) and plenty of bangles like the pearly queen crystal bangle (£16) and the crumpet lattice bangle (£10).

Friday, 10 July 2009

£10 million in the bank.

Last time I read a magazine interview with Emma Watson, she only had £2 million and she said she was set for life. Admittedly, I have never been terribly fond of her but I did buy the August issue of Elle UK because she was on the cover. Plus I watched her interview with Jonathan Ross and I ADORE her Burberry campaign! Perhaps I am jealous that she hangs out with Johnny Borrell and gets invited to Chanel shows.

These are pictures from the August issue of Teen Vogue. Aren't the outfits stunning? I would like to be famous just to wear amazing creations like these.

Thursday, 9 July 2009

What to wear on a plane.

I'm thinking this outfit was not thought through.

It's not actually that hard to look stylish whilst flying, but it depends how 'glam' you want to go. Of course, comfort is very important, particularly on long haul flights. These are my personal rules for plane wear:

1a. Wear a dress - just a simple dress (like a shift or tunic). Assuming it's not a bodycon dress or similar, you won't have any pressure on your belly and that is a huge plus for comfort. Jeans can be a bit restrictive. Of course, you can always wear a skirt, cargo pants, shorts etc. but I find dresses are the most convenient and easiest to look chic in. If you really want to, bring a belt to jazz up your dress once you arrive.

1b. Alternatively, a cotton top/jersey and loose-fitting trousers (in black) will also look effortlessly chic. Comfort is still the key factor!

2. Shoes - no high heels. Who wears heels on a plane? With the exception of being in first class, you just look like an idiot. And (God forbid) if the plane were to crash land, you'd have to leave your heels on the plane, leaving you barefoot (though that should be the least of your worries).
Depending on the destination, my footwear of choice would be boots, sandals/flip flops or trainers. Some people may wear pumps/flats, but feet expand in the air and since I have awkward sized feet, my shoes changing size would not be very ideal. Some people bring a pair of slippers onboard to walk around in. I think that's quite clever, but I'd also rather not carry unnecessary things.

3. Bring a cardigan - or some sort of wrap. Sometimes it gets rather chilly so it's better to be safe than sorry. Most airlines can supply blankets, but they may charge you. A pair of leggings can also be useful if you're flying from Tenerife to Glasgow.

4. Layer - and on the other end of the spectrum, it may also get quite warm (I find this very rare) so be ready to peel layers off if need be.

5. No make up - it's pretty much like going to sleep with make up still on your face. For a short flight eg. Paris to Madrid, then it's acceptable, but if you're on a plane for 10+ hours from Seoul to L.A. then you really don't want to be caked in make up. Carry some facial wipes in your handbag and a really good moisturiser (truth be told, I like to smother my face in Origins creams from the airport counter) to ensure your skin stays hydrated throughout the journey. A good lipbalm is also desirable. You can always re-apply your make up just before you land.

6. Keep your hair down - if you want to rest your head on the headrest, then it's much easier to do this without having hairclips and headbands getting in the way of your comfort.

7. Sunglasses - you may be labelled as a snob for walking around with your sunglasses on, so it's up to you. They can also double as an eye mask when you want to sleep.

I have previously discussed what I carry in my hand luggage, but I just want to add that if you're afraid of losing something in your suitcase (like jewellery or a really nice dress) then take it onboard with you. Furthermore, if you're travelling with others, see if you can put some of your clothes in their suitcase just incase your suitcase doesn't make it! At least you'll have half your clothes.

What are you preferred travel outfits?

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

High street lust #5.

It's the return of the beach/holiday wear! I cannot decide which I like more; the super cute striped Odille bikini in cherry red (£28 + £22) or the feather kimono dress (£95). The print is amazing!

The Dita croc twistlock bag (£38) and shell chandelier earrings (£6) in turquoise really bring out the details in the kimono dress and are a great contrast with the bikini. Put these together with the Sadie strappy high gladiators (£35, from £60) and you have an awesome summer nights outfit. Of course, a pair of oversized sunglasses like the Dallas vintage resin (£16) are a must for 'incognito beach babe chic'. I also think summer is an excuse to wear lots and lots and lots and lots of bangles.

Sunday, 5 July 2009

And I'll savour every moment of this.

Camisole - Gap
Cardigan 'dress' - Miss Selfridge
Footless tights - Topshop
Shoes - Topshop
Bag - Chanel
Glasses - Osiris

Went out for dim sum lunch on Saturday with my grandparents. I bought this cardigan to wear as a dress, which works so long as I don't sit down. The cardigan is also a maize colour, but the camera made it look off-white. Um, I don't know what's up with my hair.

My brother was listening to an old The Used album this morning. I miss listening to that sort of music.

Saturday, 4 July 2009

I do.

I have recently fallen in love with Ian Stuart's bridal dresses. I don't like glitter and I used to think that I wanted a fairly simple but elegant dress, but now I want one of his amazing creations! I want an interesting back, like a bow or lots of flowing layers. I want a Swarovski crystal encrusted sweetheart neckline bodice. I want scattered pick ups. I want beautiful French lace. But first I need to find my prince charming.

Wouldn't it be amazing to be a model for wedding dresses!

Friday, 3 July 2009

Fifteen love.

Polo shirt - Topshop
Skirt - American Apparel
Shoes - Topshop
Glasses - Prada
Bag - Chanel

I went shopping for bikinis on Friday. It's actually very hard to find something that flatters flat-chested girls. The above outfit is an attempt at the Constance hockey uniforms, but I couldn't be bothered with a waistbelt and it was far too warm for knee socks. I was considering returning these shoes since they don't really match anything in my closet but I love them too much! It's a shame they rub on my ankles and give me blisters.

Don't you love the umpires' jackets at Wimbledon? That white piping on those navy blazers is awesome! I guess they just remind me of something Blair wore. I also really like the ball girls/boys' RL polo shirts with the giant logo.

Thursday, 2 July 2009

Summer reads.

My bookshelf. Magnifique, non?

Lazing about on the beach all day everyday gets a bit tiring. Laying around at home in the garden gets a bit boring. Here are a few books to pass the time. They aren't all philosophical or totally mind-blowing but they are nice easy reads with good plots.

Holes by Louis Sachar: a simple book to read but rather captivating. A boy called Stanley Yelnats is wrongfully arrested and is sent to a camp where he has to dig a large hole under the boiling hot sun each day. He is told it is 'character building' but Stanley soon realises there is more to it. The main storyline parallels things that happened in the past and you eventually see how everything is intertwined.

The Princess Bride by William Goldman: an amazing semi-historic fairytale. If you want charming princes, damsels in distress, feisty swordfights, storming castles, evil villains, love stories and humour wrapped up in a fantasy world then this is the book for you.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time by Mark Haddon: of all the books in this list, this has probably had the most coverage in recent years. The narrator is a boy with Asperger's Syndrome (a form of autism). One day he discovers his neighbour's dog lying dead in the garden. The book follows Christopher as he tries to uncover the mystery and we enter his world of noise, colours, unemotion and mathematical quirk.

The Beach by Alex Garland: probably made famous by Leonardo Di Caprio. We follow a backpacker, Richard, in search of his paradise among the beaches of Thailand, but after a while his 'Eden' begins to fall apart. The chapters in this are short, which makes it easy to read. You can simply take this as an adventure novel or you can read between the lines.

Magic Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton: there are 3 books in this collection; The Enchanted Wood, The Magic Faraway Tree and The Folk of the Faraway Tree. If you didn't read these when you were a child then you missed out! Moonface! Saucepan man! The gist of it is some kids who find a magic tree. At the top of the tree is a portal to a different land each day. It's full of magic and adventure and will take you down memory lane.

PS Bestseller books that I DO NOT recommend?
Twilight and PS I Love You. I could have written those! And perhaps I will. My dream last night was some great inspiration for a novel.

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

In the navy!

Dress - Miss Selfridge
Shoes - Office
Bag - Chanel

It's been so hot recently! I feel like I can't do anything when it's warm. All I want to do is lie down in front of a fan drinking iced tea. On Wednesday night I went out for sushi. It was a free meal and my car parking turned out to be free too. Bonus! This is one of my favourite dresses. I love nautical-esque clothing ♥ Apparently I dress very simply in summer, I never noticed that before.

I feel like a nurse when I look down at my shoes! Why are my feet so vein-y?