Sarenza contest = win shoes! (NOW CLOSED)

28.6.12

This is just a quick heads up incase you haven't seen the contest already, as you only have until 6pm tomorrow to enter. Follow this link to the Sarenza Facebook page for full details. It's really easy to enter so make sure you get your comment done in time! :)

I have picked my Summer favourites, along with a few other bloggers, which include the Aja sandals by Chocolate Schubar which I absolutely love. The hints of blue are perfect for Summer and they're both practical and stylish. They would go really well with a variety of Summer outfits (if we ever get the weather right!)

If you like my collection be sure to comment and be in with a chance to win £120 worth of shoes! Good luck!

Pretty pumps by Anniel.

24.6.12

I mentioned in my "most worn" post that my Anniel pumps in light pink are a firm favourite amongst my pump collection. I love them and they're so pretty but a little bit impractical sometimes due to the English weather. I'm always so scared of getting marks on them but I do love them so. They're extremely well made, comfortable and look great with skinny jeans or leggings (or treggings as I'm quite partial to at the moment).


Anyway, my solution to the above was to obtain another pair in a more practical colour. Cue the grey pair with a bubblegum pink trim in the same style called Irise

I love the colour combo of grey and pink. They're a little bit different to the other shoes in my collection but the colours aren't too bright that they would be difficult to match with outfits.

Irise pumps by Anniel c/o Sarenza

Before I became an ambassador for Sarenza, Anniel was not a brand I was familiar with. I'm glad I found them though as I know I'm going to get so much wear out of these pumps. If you'd like to know a little bit more about this brand keep reading... 

It all began as a family business in Montebelluna near Venice, which has been devoted heart and soul since 1976 to producing exceptional sports footwear. The shoes and the ballet pumps from Anniel are authentic Made-in-Italy creations, which are produced by a skilled workforce with advanced technologies in order to respect the creativity of each style, and bring you unparalleled comfort. The quality of Anniel footwear has meant that it now exports all over the world and has expanded rapidly. 

Today, more than 500,000 pairs of Anniel shoes are sold every year to specialists of dance and also to an urban public that’s hungry for intelligent new trends. Fashionable yet authentic, Anniel shoes are also very supple which makes them a real pleasure to wear.

They even get a Puggy seal of approval!

Custard Cream.

23.6.12

If there's one thing I like more than having a cup of tea it's having a cup of tea in one hand and a packet of biscuits in the other. Custard Creams are one of my all time favourites so you can imagine my delight when a Custard Cream cushion by Nikki McWilliams popped up on my Instagram feed as somebody I follow had purchased one. Within about 5 minutes I had placed an order of my own.

My cushion arrived really quickly and well wrapped. It is even nicer in real life than it looks in Nikki's shop and I'm so pleased with my purchase. It now takes pride of place on the sofa in our 'den' and may shortly be joined by a Rich Tea Finger, a Tunnock Teacake or a good old Digestive!

Falafel burgers.

18.6.12

Since I decided to become a vegetarian all of a sudden a few weeks ago I've been dying to make falafel as I love it so much. I could eat falafel and houmous every day if I could but I fear I'd turn into a giant chickpea...

I found a great recipe for falafel burgers and first tried it out a couple of weekends ago where it was a great success. I enjoyed them so much that I made them again on Saturday.


They are so easy to make. It's just a case of throwing all of your ingredients into a blender and whizzing everything up. The first time I followed the recipe to the letter but the second time I just threw a bit of everything and anything in, and substituted some of the ingredients I didn't have.


Once you've got your falafel mix ready you just make burger size pieces and fry them for about 3-4 minutes each side. The recipe says 3 minutes each side but I found they needed a little longer than this but that's mainly because I wanted them to be quite crispy on the outside.

The first time I served the burgers with toasted pitta bread, salad, homemade chips and some loads of tomato relish. The second time I changed the pitta for a ciabatta.


Yum! They were really tasty and so easy to make. I'm not a great lover of cooking (I prefer baking) but they were a no brainer. You could adapt the recipe and put all sorts of different things in depending on your taste. Plus the best bit is they're only 161 calories per burger if you follow the recipe so it means you can have more chips. Winner!

Little Chef (my helper)

Being a bridesmaid round 2!

16.6.12

In September I will be a bridesmaid for the second time this year when my best friend Katy gets married (Jonathan is the best man so as you can imagine we're both very much looking forward to it and honoured to be asked!)

A lovely dress is being made just for me so my main task was to find a pair of shoes. I thought about wearing my Vivienne Westwood heels as they're so beautiful and I would love another occasion to wear them, but I am led to believe there will be lots of dancing at this wedding and I don't think my poor feet could take it.

I searched every inch of Sarenza looking at ivory/white/cream shoes and narrowed it down to about 3 or 4 pairs. My dress is long so most of the time only the ends will be visible so it was important for them to have a pointy toe. I wanted a colour that would go nicely with the colour of the dress, and the heel had to be mid height. Just enough to give me a bit of extra height but still comfortable to walk in. I also didn't want anything too fancy with lots of embellishments.


In the end I plumped for the Shannie heels by Georgia Rose, one of my favourite brands. Katy thought they were very 'me' and they were my favourite of the bunch after a little bit of deliberating. I love the pretty ribbon and the height of the heel is just right.

In real life they are even more beautiful. They're made of leather and look/feel very expensive and well made. I'm very pleased with my choice! 

The only thing left to do now is wear them around the house a little bit so that they're ready to throw some shapes on the dancefloor at the wedding!

Birds and Blossoms.

14.6.12

Zoe, behind the blog Girl in a Teeny Town, runs a bigcartel store called Birds and Blossoms which sells really cute bookmarks.

Zoe recently sent me the 'Birds and Blossoms' bookmark which now takes pride of place in one of the books I'm reading. It certainly beats the scrap piece of paper I had been using previously! It consists of a length of sparkly pink ribbon and two beautiful charms; a bird and a flower. It is my favourite bookmark from the store but I also rather like the unicorn version too.

The bookmarks are priced very reasonably at just £2.00 each and P&P is £1.00 for UK orders. At £2.00 each the bookmarks would make great stocking fillers for a book worm or a lover of pretty things.

The packaging and attention to detail by Zoe was really great. It's lovely to receive parcels in the post but it's even better when they're nicely wrapped and contain sweets and a handwritten note.

I'd certainly like to see Birds and Blossoms expand and further the range of bookmarks as I think they're really cute items and good value for money.

Good enough to eat.

13.6.12

I've gone cross stitching mad recently and have been tasked with making a few things for our home and for others. I'm currently designing something for my Sister, making a wedding present for some newlyweds and I just finished stitching a cupcake for a birthday card.

I'm really pleased with how it turned out especially as it's a little bit different to my usual choice of pattern (it's by Cross Stitcher magazine by the way). I didn't have the exact colours to hand so I'm happy that the alternatives I picked worked well.

I don't know about you but now I'm hungry!

A "super" wedding.

10.6.12

Yesterday Jonathan and I attended the wedding of Steph and Sam, Steph being somebody who works for Jonathan. We had been looking forward to the wedding and knew it would be good fun, judging by the comic book style invitation which promised Mexican food and a barn dance!

The ceremony was held at Sheffield Botanical Gardens and after a rather dark and drizzly morning miraculously the sun made a glorious appearance for the whole of the ceremony which we were all thankful for as it was all based outside with just a little bit of cover for the bride and groom.


The grooms Sister sang "Stand by Me" as the bride made her way around the gardens with 2 bridesmaids and her 2 dogs in tow. As one of my favourite songs of all time it almost brought a tear to my eye but I managed to keep composed! (as a side note, later on she sang "we're going to be friends" which I hadn't heard before but I LOVE it. Youtube it!)

The bride looked beautiful and it was such a unique ceremony in the sunshine and beautiful setting.

As huge comic book and superhero geeks fans the reception was full of amazing comic related things to keep us all amused, from the table centre pieces and tableplan to the holders for the pic n mix. Each table had different theme and ours was the Batman table complete with a batman comic and other bits and bobs.


I must also mention the wedding cake at this point which was brilliant!


We were seated near to the pick n mix table which was probably a huge mistake. I ate so many Love Heart sweets I think I was close to a sugar overdose.

Food came in the form of a Mexican buffet and they even made me a special vegetarian enchilada so I was very pleased. Everything tasted great, and was washed down with a huge slab of chocolate cake (plus more pick n mix...).

We were seated with the other people from Jonathan's department at work so it was nice to be seated with people that we knew. 


Once everyone was suitably stuffed and the speeches had been made out came the band and the barn dancing teacher who proceeded to teach some willing volunteers how to barn dance their way round the dancing area. It looked like a lot of fun but we were happy to watch from the comfort of our table. My excuse: I had heels on! Obviously not suitable barn dancing attire. That's my excuse and I'm sticking with it :)

After a couple of drinks and a chat with the newlyweds we said our goodbyes and headed home to Rotherham. What a great wedding!

Jubilee party & a workshop at The Button Tin, Rotherham.

8.6.12

Last Saturday my friend Katy and I booked ourselves onto a workshop at The Button Tin in Rotherham (which I mentioned in this post). The Button Tin is located inside the Imperial Buildings in the centre of Rotherham which is really quite a fascinating place. It is most definitely worth a look if you're passing. My friend and I dream of opening our own shop (a bead & supplies shop to be precise) in one of the empty units but we would require a lotto win of some sort first.

To join in with the jubilee celebrations the Imperial Buildings housed a party full of live music, bunting, cakes, poetry, cups of tea, a vintage style hairdresser, and workshops to take part in. 


Katy and I opted to do the half day workshop where we spent a good few hours picking out materials and making bunting. It was such a lot of fun although I'm so bad at picking colour schemes and fabrics. That was most definitely the hardest part, but once I got going I was fine. It was great to take in the atmosphere and the music whilst cutting, ripping and pinning fabric together.


We were stationed on tables outside The Button Tin workshop but there were ladies inside on the full day workshop. After a peek inside to have a nosy and marvel at all the wonderful things Gemma keeps in her workshop we could see they were making the most beautiful fabric pieces with freehand sewing machine writing, buttons, embellishments and all sorts.

We will definitely be signing up for another workshop once some new dates are published. I haven't used a sewing machine since I did my Textiles A-level so I will no doubt need to brush up my skills (I am flabbergasted at just realising that my A-levels were nearly 10 years ago! *sob*). I'm toying with the idea of buying a mini sewing machine from John Lewis but I'm not sure whether I'd have the confidence to make things at home.

Lots of people turned up to the jubilee celebrations and so many people were dressed in vintage clothes, really getting into the spirit of things. The vintage style hairdresser was busy transforming modern hairstyles into victory rolls and I was very tempted myself but unfortunately we didn't get chance.


There are a handful shops within the Imperial Buildings so once we were all bunting-ed out for the day we had a browse round and I picked up the most pretty vintage plates. I thought they would perfectly house a piece of cake but since I got them home I've been too scared to use them as they're so delicate.

Have you done any Button Tin workshops? If not, have you got any plans to? You should!

DIY: hen party bags.

5.6.12

For my Sister's hen do my Mum and I wanted to put together party bags for all of the "hens" to say thank you for flying out to Vegas for the wedding and for the rest of the celebrations. My Mum, Sister and I put our thinking caps on and started to source items that we could use to populate the gift bags.

My Mum found the bags themselves online and had some personalised just for the occasion. We were really pleased with them and couldn't wait to get started filling them up!

We wanted a good mix of useful products and silly things too. We thought it would be nice to include products and items that could be used throughout the evening, along with a few things that would come in handy for the rest of the trip.


Here's what we included:

* pocket tissues
* traditional sugared almonds in a pretty organza bag
* a handbag sized hairspray
* a handbag sized deodorant
* Love Heart sweets
* A willy straw (I had to persuade my Sister to let me include one tacky thing :))
* A rosette for each hen to wear that evening
* A bag of Mini Cheddars incase anyone got the munchies
* Headache & Upset Stomach Relief for the following morning
* Tic Tacs to keep the alcohol breath away
* a nail file
* some Kiehl's skincare samples
* a personalised necklace

I must say a big thank you to Kiehl's who supplied my Sister very generously with lots of samples for each hen. It was really nice of them to do this and of the products I've tried so far I've been impressed. Thank you so much!

The bags went down so well with the hens who loved the items we had picked for them and proudly displayed their necklaces and rosettes for the evenings activities that lay ahead.

I'd like to say a big thank you to all of the hens for making my Sister's hen night so special and so much fun!

Life lately (through Instagram) #4

4.6.12

I feel a tad 'meh' today so in an attempt to cheer myself up I thought a blog catch up and a slice of about half a carrot cake would cheer me up (it did apart from I feel a bit sick now... quelle surprise).


Life lately has consisted of:

becoming a vegetarian, taking photos of Lily and Lola, trying to be more healthy (with the exception of the carrot cake of course), dreaming of a new kitchen and being torn between a smart, classic wooden/white combo or a kitsch polka dot dream...


buying new artwork for our home, sleeping, taking Lily and Lola out in the sunshine (and having to carry Lily most of the way once she gets too tired)...


cross stitching, reading craft magazines, burning candles, browsing Pug related tranklements, Lily playing with a ball for the first time since I adopted her all those years ago...


eating ginormous pizzas (pre-vegetarian) and sunny days out with friends.