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Showing posts with label fashion. Show all posts
Showing posts with label fashion. Show all posts

Thursday, 23 October 2014

A walk in the countryside

Autumn country walk

I could get used to this country lifestyle. No amount of mooching about in Hyde Park, or frolicking in the greener parts of South London can really replace the fresh air and sense of infinite freedom I get from donning my biggest, clumpiest Dr Marten boots and trudging through some mud, taking in huge lungfuls of cool, clean air. Hampstead Heath comes close, but even that doesn't quite hit the spot.

Late Autumn is my absolute favourite time for country walks, because there's nothing in the fields that would give me hay-fever, and it is the perfect temperature outside to bundle up in lots of knitted layers to keep warm before coming home rosy-cheeked and windswept to a toasty house and something hearty to eat.

And that's exactly what Dan and I did last weekend. We set off through the churchyard, and up the lane past the local farm equipment, before winding our way through some woods and along a little stream. We stopped by the side of the stream to sit with a flask of tea, watching the crows peck around the fields. And do you know what? I think we might go for another walk this weekend!

Countryside horizon UK
Cosy autumn outfits
Cambridgeshire fields
Cambridge stream walk
Ginger woman in England
Scary sheep gangland
mushroom hunting in Cambridgeshire
shrivelled leg woman
Autumn sunset England
Autumn knitwear fashion
A lovely walk in cambridge

Jumper and scarf - Both H&M


Thursday, 11 September 2014

Behind the scenes on Owl Girl - The Blog Hop

blog secret behind the scenes

What do bloggers actually do all day? Blogging can't be that hard can it? Don't you guys just go to tonnes of parties and get given loads of free stuff?

Well, I can't speak for all bloggers, which is kind of the point. We're all different and we get up to a lot of different stuff, we've all got unique perspectives and outlooks on everything. (Funny that, what with us all being different and individual human beings...) Anyway, I was nominated by Hayley-Eszti, who is an absolutely fantastic blogger (are blog-crushes a thing? Because I think I might have one on her...), to do this little 'blog hop' challenge, which is where I get to give you guys a little insight into my creative process with this here blog! I hope you find it interesting! Oh and most of the pictures in this post are outtakes from other posts, because ~behind the scenes~...

Writing blog notes

1. What am I working on/writing right now?

At the moment, I am planning quite a few foodie posts, starting with a review of another amazing independent cafe in Camberwell, and a few recipes too. Food is a big part of my life - Dan and I love cooking together, and visiting lots of the amazing restaurants that London has to offer. I want to do more outfit posts because putting outfits together is such fun for me! I try really hard not to repeat outfits because I like the challenge. Once we've moved into our new flat, you will be able to expect a lot of home decor posts and a house tour as we about decorating our first proper home together. I mean, we've been living together for years and years now, but always in places that we've not been able to decorate! I can't wait to share that process with you!

2. How does my blog differ from others of its genre?

Like Hayley-Eszti, I don't really like to compare this blog to other people's! It makes me sad, and it doesn't do anyone justice. Some of the things I love about my blog is that it's packed with lots of pretty photos that I took myself (or that Dan took of me!) and it provides a great meeting point for some of my biggest interests: fashion, music, food, the city, craft, the countryside, travel... I feel like I can write with confidence about these things and do the topics justice. So that's what I love about my blog and my writing - I know I kind of cheated with my answer to that question, but it's my blog, so nyeugh...!

Cheeky Basil herbs

3. Why do I write what I do?

I blog because it is the apex of writing, photography and creativity. I am happiest when I'm making something, either physically, or on the internet. I can look at it and say, "I MADE that!" which is so satisfying. I've been making things and writing things for longer than I can remember (somewhere there's a cassette tape of me telling a long, long story about a princess who killed all of her prospective husbands by turning them into inanimate objects using magical powers. I don't remember making this story up but I LOVE that my parents thought to record me telling it!) and ultimately, I want my career to involve creativity. It would be a dream come true to be able to make things, create outfits, make music, write, and take beautiful photographs for a living. And hopefully with a lot of hard work from me, and a bit of help from all of you guys, that could become a reality some day!

4. How does my writing process work?

I start by making a big ol' list in my little notebook. There are so many lists of possible blog posts and fragments of ideas in there, and the lists are always growing. Sometimes something urgent will happen, like I go to an incredible cafe that I simply must blog about, or we go on a surprise holiday that means I HAVE to write a post about aeroplane fashion... But mostly I will blog about things that I think you guys would like to read. I block off some weekend time to take photos for a few posts, which usually involves a little trek to somewhere pretty, and then once I'm satisfied that there are enough photos to choose from (sometimes we take hundreds...) we come home. Dan makes me a cup of tea in my favourite mug, and I bury myself underneath a bunch of blankets to edit photos, write, and assemble my post. Once I'm satisfied, I check the previews and then publish it. Dan proof-reads it once it is live, which means I usually have to make a couple of tiny edits. When we're sure that it's okay, I promote it on social media and you guys come and read it! :)

Cat in shot! Ha!

I hope this was fun to read - I feel like I've been quite honest in this post, and I'd love to know what you guys think! Is there any kind of post that you'd like to see more of? After all, as much as blogging is for me, I want to create something that makes people happy!

I'd like to nominate Jessica, whose blog The Pyreflies is this incredible mix of gamer culture and twee fashion; Victoria from VVNightingale which is a blog packed with amazing fashion and lifestyle picks, and some honestly written posts; and Kerri, whose blog Crumbs in the Bed documents her adventures in academia and Belgium.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Brighton Lights - A whirlwind trip back to my hometown

Modern Brighton Postcard

Brightonians (as we call ourselves) are notoriously filled to the brim with pride in our fantastic city. Yes, Brighton IS a city! I count myself so very lucky to have grown up in this wonderful place, and I'd love to bring my kids up here too. It's big enough that I could become street-wise, but small enough that I'd ALWAYS run into someone I knew when wandering around town, and it's sandwiched so beautifully between the seaside and the countryside. I've always loved Brighton but I've never appreciated it as much as I do now that I live in London. Much as I love the bustle of London, and the fact that you can pretty much get EVERYTHING here, there's nothing quite like the inclusive, friendly atmosphere of Brighton. Case in point: I received four compliments on my skirt in Brighton, and whilst I know my skirt is fabulous, I've never received an innocent compliment about my fashion choices in London!

Colourful houses Brighton
Chicwish Neon Lights Skirt Blog
Alleyway fashion shoot
Bokeh skirt blogger style

We decided to travel down to Brighton for the day on an absolute whim. I missed my hometown and if you've got a rail card and you go on the slow train, a day return from London only costs £6. We wandered around the shops, ate hearty donburis at Pompoko, a super cheap and cheerful Japanese place, wandered some more, and had an incredible vegetarian dinner at my favourite restaurant Terre à Terre. We had a tapas plate to share, and a sharing dessert too. Both were absolutely beautiful, complex and perfect. I've wanted to take Dan to Terre à Terre for years now, and I'm so glad we went.

terre a terre tapas review
terre a terre dessert menu

Bellies full, we waddled along the rapidly darkening seafront to the glowing lights of the pier, because Dan has never been to the pier at night. I had a great time playing with the light to make it match my skirt, and telling Dan all about all of the different memories I had of times I spent on this pier in my childhood and adolescence. We walked right to the end, looked out to sea and tasted the salt on our lips, before paying to ride the ghost train (which is actually quite scary since they've renovated it. It includes a really horrific zombie bathroom scene, and a severed head burning in an oven... Dark...)

Typical Brighton Sunset UK
The Palace Pier at Night
Bokeh Brighton Pier
Brighton Pier night fashion
Pier rides Brighton
Blurry lights effect
Merry go round fashion
sunset fashion brighton uk

Brighton is often portrayed as this pastel, saccharine seaside destination, all stripes and sticks of rock, and Mr Whippy ice creams with a flake stuck in at a jaunty angle. Yeah, we've got all of those things, and to the casual visitor it is probably easy to restrict your visit to these aspects of Brighton if you want to. But to me, Brighton is so much more than that. Brighton has a dark, grimy underbelly. It has a thriving arts scene and more youth music than you'd think possible. It's got restaurants and cafés for every taste, it's got countless creepy kebab places, it's got winding alleys, lanes and laines, boulevards, landmarks, local history, and so much character. This has been a love song to my favourite place. I miss you, Brighton, and I'll be back soon, I promise!

Skirt: Chicwish
Top: H&M Basics (it's actually a bodycon dress)
Shoes: Dr Martens

Saturday, 16 August 2014

A jolly jaunt to Portobello Road

Portobello Weekend

At about midnight on Friday night I decided that I wanted to go to a market on Saturday morning. Since it has been almost three years since I made it to one of my favourites, Portobello Road market, we decided that it was as good a time as any to visit again. I love to mooch about on the side streets to look at the beautiful houses, and squeeze into the crowded vintage shops to ogle the gorgeous dresses on sale. Dan was excited about all of the food stalls, so we hopped on the bus to see what we could find.

UK Modcloth order
Deschanel dress modcloth
Electric cinema neon sign

After battling through the crowds (oh gosh, why did I think Saturday was a good time to come to Portobello Road?! Whyyy?!) we ducked into the Electric diner which is attached to the Electric cinema. Dan and I shared the best burger I've ever eaten in my life, and some truly spectacular avocado/poached egg toast, as well as skin-on fries with garlic mayo. Oh and a peanut butter and banana milkshake that was so incredible that even avid banana-hater Dan loved it. I didn't manage to take any photos of the food because the lighting inside the restaurant was so... ambient... that any food photography would not have done the meal justice at all. Once we were full to the brim, we popped back outside to walk it off a bit in the sunshine. I do love Portobello Road and all of its mad stalls and shops. My only problem is that I ALWAYS end up with the Portobello Road song from Bedknobs and Broomsticks stuck in my head whenever I go!

colourful houses in London
ginger fringe hairstyle
kirby grip toolkit

I know my elbow looks a bit backwards in that last photo. I've got hypermobile elbows due to my Ehlers Danlos Syndrome. I might write a post about that at some point in the future, if anyone's interested in hearing more about my creepy bendy tricks. More importantly though, LOOK AT MY HAIR CLIP! It has tools built into it. I'm so excited about it that I have a whole other blog post lined up all about it! So watch this space. My dress is six years old from Modcloth, and my shoes are from last year's ankle boot collection at Office. Hurrah! Anyway, we had a lovely day out, and returned home so thoroughly exhausted that we had to have a nap on the sofa with our little cat. I hope you had a wonderful weekend - what did you get up to?

Thursday, 7 August 2014

July's Greatest Hits!

July was kind of an epic month both for me and for this here little blog. Lots happened and I stepped up my blogging game to actually document a fair bit of it. Welcome to a new Owl Girl segment, in which I have a mini freak-out about all the positive moments of the month. This one will be a short one since I left it so late!

July's memorable moment

Oslo opera joy

The moment from July that I will remember for a long time is the feeling of standing on top of the opera house in Oslo, as a storm closed in over the fjords! I blogged about it here!

July's Instagram moments

gold jelly fashion tapped and packed
cat time toilet time


I got these incredible jellies (my first pair in approaching twenty years!!) from Sun Jellies and I am totally in love with them. I love gold and I love sparkles but I kind of want every other colour of jellies now. Stay tuned for an outfit post with these babies involved! Other Instagram highlights involve some gorgeous iced coffee at Tapped and Packed, an incongruous "gentlemen" sign, and a bit of blurry cat action. Follow me on Instagram for more happyfuntimes!

Songs on repeat in July

This July I have been obsessed with Calexico, particularly their cover of Alone Again Or by Love, although I have pretty much had their entire discography on repeat for weeks now! I've also listened to Be Okay by Oh Honey and Can't Pretend by Tom Odell more times than I can count this month. Be Okay is super happy and the Tom Odell song is very mournful, just so you're warned. Emotional whiplash is on its way. Click through to watch YouTube videos of each song!

Blogs I've loved this month

I couldn't write this post without a shout out to Mimmi from Muted Mornings. She runs this wonderful, whimsical blog with plenty of light and bright photographs of gorgeous food and landscapes. She's also a really kind person! Another special mention to Julie from Lines Her Eyes, who did a great post called 'Things that got me through July' recently. Both of these lovely ladies nominated me for a Liebster award and I'm so happy! Check out their blogs! My final blog recommendation for the month is my dear friend Zoe who runs a great blog called Floral Zoe. She's a megababe and you're going to LOVE her.

Sorry this is a tiny short post, but be prepared for these "favourites" posts to become a regular thing, and I'll be talking about favourite products, favourite songs and the most magical moments of each month!

Did anything lovely happen to you in July? Please tell me all about it!

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

What to pack for a short city break

in-flight essentials

I'm sure you haven't failed to notice that we've been on our anniversary minibreak in Oslo... It's not like I've been posting about anything else! Anyway, as I mentioned in my airport fashion post, as far as I'm concerned, the holiday begins when I'm packing my bags. There's something so exciting about the anticipation involved. What will we do? What will I need?
So I thought I'd share just a few of my favourite things to pack for a very short "city break" - this is by no means all that I brought with me - just a few bits and pieces that I thought would be worth sharing! I took these photos as the morning sun streamed through the window of our attic hotel room, and Dan was shaving his face in our tiny ensuite. At the very end of the post, I'll let you know where everything came from, so stay tuned! And don't forget to watch our Oslo vlogs, if you haven't already!

minibreak packing list
holiday pyjamas
minibreak beauty kit
holy grail holiday project
Headphone tidy - Yesstyle - Cute if not super useful...
Portable eyelash curler - MUJI - Use this very carefully as it is quite different from a normal eyelash curler!
Hairclip - Boots - Useful in-flight and for putting on makeup.
Tea dress - Dorothy Perkins - See previous post! This is a great casual date dress.
Plastic travel pouch - MUJI - All my liquids were in here because we only took carry-on luggage.
Analogue camera - Pentax - This used to be my mum's camera!
Light pyjamas - Primark - The top has one of those useless 'built in bra' things, but if you can get past that ridiculousness, it's great. And the trousers are super comfy. I'm wearing them right now.
Makeup wipes - Boots - makeup wipes are perfect for short breaks and carry-on luggage holidays.
Eyeshadow duo - Bare Minerals - Again, this is tiny and great for a 'basics only' approach to packing!
Dehydrated sheet masks - MUJI - OMG these are amazing. A splash of water or toner and they unfurl into sheet masks to refresh your face. Dan and I both used these in the evening before our little dinner date.

What are your packing essentials? What should I take with me next time I go away? Let me know in the comments, and I'll be sure to respond! :)

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Friday, 11 July 2014

Food and coffee in Oslo

tim wendelboe review

Every holiday is a culinary tour for us. We spent our whole honeymoon hopping from cafe to restaurant to ramen bar to street food cart, and our anniversary mini-break to Oslo was no different. Read of our wondrous foodie adventures, and if you stay tuned until the bottom of the post, you may or may not be treated to an accidental 'Marilyn moment'...
We arrived at our hotel very late at night, although there was still a glow in the sky, it being midsummer Norway and all, so after what felt like the shortest night's sleep ever, we ventured downstairs for the most incredible breakfast buffet of our lives. There were eggs and a hot plate to fry them on, a build-your-own muesli bar, countless different types of cheese, and mountains of cured salmon. After all that, we didn't feel like we would ever be able to eat again. (But don't worry - we could!)
We bought a couple of all-day bus tickets from a convenience store called Narvesen and hopped on a bus to Grünerløkka, which we had been informed was the "Shoreditch of Oslo". I actually thought it was much more laid back and family-orientated than Shoreditch, but it was still definitely very trendy. We walked up the river for a bit and then stopped for an iced coffee at Tim Wendelboe. Despite coming in a martini glass, my iced cappuccino was in no way a novelty drink. This was seriously smooth, creamy coffee and it was perfectly brewed. Dan got a different type of iced coffee that came with some kind of aniseed twist. It was just as incredible as mine. The decor at Tim Wendelboe is minimal, with very few spots to sit - the room was dominated by an enormous coffee bean roaster, all clean and industrial looking. The counter tops were functional and wooden - everything was designed to make sure that the coffee spoke for itself, which it really did.

Oslo Street Fashion
Pattern mixing Summer
City break in Oslo
Grunerlokka Hipster

After a lot of wandering and mooching, a trip to the Munch museum, and a visit to the amazing Fram museum (a museum dedicated to the first successful mission to the south pole - more on this at a later date), we changed for a little date night dinner at Elias mat & sånt. This was recommended online as a reasonably priced, modern take on traditional Norwegian food, and it did not disappoint. We amused ourselves between delicious courses, with children's books in Norwegian, and browsed the extensive collection of board games. I'd really recommend this place and enjoyed the fabulous smoked salmon and poached egg salad - Dan had reindeer stew, which was served with a mountain of delicious, buttery mashed potato.
We were only in Oslo for a day and a half, but we managed to squeeze in trips to visit two gorgeous sandwich shops, the Grünerløkka Bakeri, and Godt Brød. Both did fantastic sandwiches. Perhaps Scandinavian sandwiches should be called Scandwiches? Anyway, this sample of two has convinced me that Oslo is the sandwich capital of the world. Fresh ingredients, beautiful flavour combinations and real passion about food. (I sound like a knob).

Date night Oslo
Asparagus date
Norwegian disney

We visited another coffee shop the morning before we left, called Mocca. Again, the design inside the shop was clean and slightly industrial but perfectly executed. We both ordered iced mochas and enjoyed them surrounded by young families and hip students scribbling in Moleskines. I enjoyed every single food and drink experience I had in Oslo even though it is a very expensive city. I would love to go back when I am richer and experience more of the culture that Oslo has to offer!
Yeah, I know basically all of the photos in this post are of my outfits and not food!!! Whatchoo gonna do about it? Stay tuned for more Oslo adventure posts as well as my packing essentials.

Oslo coffee shop
iced mocha oslo
Scandinavian minimalist chic

Striped top - h&m
Skirt - Dorothy Perkins
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Party dress - Dorothy Perkins
Cardigan - I have no idea... It used to belong to my mother. Ask her!

Oslo station tiger
Accidental upskirt
Windy day dress

Ooops.

P.S. Take a look at our vlog! There's bling! And licking!