Tuesday, 22 January 2013

A World of White Magic

It's finally snowed properly here in Preston! This year I decided to give snow a chance and actually appreciate it :). I generally dislike the cold and wet, but now I'll walk through with my clear umbrella glazing at the falling snow and ponder over how pretty everything looks. I was surprised that the roads and paths were pretty clear meaning life doesn't have to stop (another reason I tend to find snow annoying). If it was a proper snow day I'd much rather spend it at my family home. It didn't even feel too cold! While I was visting Birmingham last week it was reaching -4 without any snow. I must say I was super happy to wear my Gryffindor scarf and discuss the Making of Harry Potter Studio Tour London with my fellow students. I went there over the Christmas period with my family. It was the. Best. Day. Ever.

On another note what are peoples' recommendations for someone wanting to start using/purchase a DSLR? :)    

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Health and Indulgence Haul

*Pink text: hyperlinks
Pastel Teacup Measuring Cups M&S £5
One of my 2013 goals is to get super toned, be fit and generally eat better. This I'm hoping to achieve through doing the Insanity fitness programme; they have a nutrition guide alongside an intense workout schedule. This past semester I've been really lazy with my cooking and have gone for the 'stick something in the oven' or pasta option. The guide is really good as the recipes are handed to you (I don't have to stress over deciding what to eat). Most of the measurements are the American 'cups' meaning I can either flaf about constantly converting or buy some measuring cups. The ones I found weren't as cheap as I'd have liked, but these super cute teacup style ones stole my heart and as they were priced the same as the more bland designs, I had to go for them. They look like a child's tea set :).    

Fitness Trainers Nike £36.99 
The last time I bought trainers was for Physical Education in school roughly 3-4 years ago! So I had no idea which would be suitable, after discussing with Jenna and the sport store 'shoe expert' we concluded fitness, flexible grip with an air cushion would work best. The cheaper option would cause more stress on my knees and joints and they didn't look appealing, so I got these white and pink babies. :)

Crop Top Lonsdale £6.99
There seems to be a theme here. Apparently a need for women of all sizes when working out, I was recommended Lonsdale as a the best cheaper cropped top/sports bra. Sports Direct currently have all their stock in liquidation meaning I got this for £6.99 instead of £22.99, quite a saving.  

Black Crochet JC Lita Style Heels Forever 21 £32.75
I absolutely love the Jeffery Campbell Litas but simply have no justification or funds for the price tag, having refrained from buying a copy for so long I came across these in Forever 21 on my recent visit to Birmingham. The crochet is gorgeous, it's just a shame they didn't do a beige version. I wear heels every Sunday to church and often during the week for nights out, events or church activities. Having also received a 10% student discount they were pretty much an investment, one I'm going to have so much fun wearing. 

Swallow Clutch Primark 
Cheating slightly here as this was given to me by Jenna. I remember when she bought it (it must've been at least a year or two ago) and she said that eventually I'd be the owner as it's more my style. That day has come! It just made me laugh. I keep over using a beautiful, metal, embossed clutch from River Island so it's lovely to have more variety. Thanks Jenna :D. 

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Chilly Unicorns | Fashion

*pink text: hyperlinks 
Cable Knit Cardigan River Island | Hoodie Jack Wills | Scarf H&M | Unicorn Cropped Tee Topshop | Unicorn Shopper Bag Topshop | Disco Pants River Island | Buckel Shoes River Island   

It's so cold right now! Wearing all these layers and it's still freezing. Jenna and I were walking around Birmingham huddled up with me singing about how cold it was. After popping back to uni after Christmas I have decided to wear all my clothes a lot more rather than just stick to a few, I have so many it's slightly ridiculous (well almost). Three unicorns graced us with their company that day, all coincidently from Topshop. I think outfit posts should include those we wear all bundled up against the cold, it can be difficult to layer and not become a mass of cloth. I absolutely love my knitwear collection but all those little holes are rubbish for keeping out the icy wind and thus I insulated with my favourite Jack Wills hoodie; it worked a treat

The JW sale has ended meaning the new season collection is here *yay*. I'm always SO tempted to buy the gorgeous cable knit jumpers every time I visit a store or look online, the new ones are lovely. The cable pattern is more narrow and there are even a few stripy colours to choose from! My favourites are the ivory with pheasant logo in pink, and the ivory and grey stripy one. You can check them out here. They also do a mens range. If I met a man dressed in the beautiful JW British heritage attire I think I'd fall in love ;).

With the sale cable knits still being £50 and the new season £69.50 it'd have to be a special treat on my student budget, however they do offer 15% university student discount in store. I already have at least three different cable knit items in my wardrobe :). Being one of my absolute favourite brands it was only fitting we took some outfit shots outside the store. I wish we had one in my university city, I'd be ridiculously overjoyed and enthusiastic to work for them. These photos show my ombre hair really well. It's blonde from roughly chin level with my natural light ginger colouring on top. The ends have a more peachy tone from when I dyed them pink. I hope everyone is wrapped up warm and enjoying the potential snow! 

Monday, 14 January 2013

A Quaint English Village

I'm back in northland! Well...for a day. With university classes starting again next week I had to go in today to collect my portfolio and results. I had the best Christmas holidays. It was the first time since starting uni that I really appreciated my home and seeing my family after so long apart. I'm in my second year and uni is a 3-5 hour drive from my lovely family home meaning I hardly go back. My holidays were full of so many fun and exciting adventures, meaning I have yet to post about them all. I'm also off to Birmingham tomorrow for a few days to visit my best friend Jenna whom I haven't seen since the summer!!! How ridiculous! So there's plenty of posts lined up and lots more blogging opportunities on the way.  

After going to Woburn Safari Park we decided to explore the beautiful little Georgian Village Woburn. It's so picturesque and purist England. The only chain store in sight was the restaurant Loch Fyne which is such a niche anyway and subtly blended in. We wondered whether they actively petition against chains, deciding it was a great idea and that more places should be preserved and cherished. I do love my chain stores, but at times places become so similar and unoriginal. 

We visited a local art gallery run by a lovely, kind man who had such a cute dog (I never used to be much of an animal person, oh how times are a-changing) and stumbled across a wonderful antique store in an old church. We decided to be nosey and check out the local church only to be surprised by the layout and to see antiques on sale. I felt as if I was intruding in someone's home. Lots of rooms full of so many treasures! Being me I got much more excited over the books than the jewellery. In my future home I would love to have some books such as these. Maybe just enough to fill one shelf? The delicate feel, the precious stories contained, the sheer beauty of the lost art of binding and artist integrity.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

All Black Everything

*pink text: hyperlinks
My wonderful best friend Jenna has opened a little online store. I often dig at her for always wearing black and just generally lacking colour in her wardrobe. Thus she has fittingly entitled it All Black Everything a store full of class, chic and an array of sexy heels. Extremely affordable all items are less than half their recommended retail price, meaning they sell pretty fastShe also has an ebay account selling items of colour and offering a more general product range, with more stock going live this weekend it's definitely worth a look. 
*All Black Everything ships Internationally
*ebay store only ships to the UK

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Woburn Safari Park

Last week I went to Woburn Safari Park, I've been there years ago with family but luckily I didn't remember too much so I was still able to enjoy an element of surprise. First you drive though and then there's a walk around section with the option to attend shows. It wasn't too busy and we had plenty of time to marvel at just how easily we can see elephants, camels, lions, tigers, wolves, etc in England; it must be pretty cold for them! You can tell which ones I was so enthralled by as there's no photos of them. Some were slightly scary but thrilling to observe. 

It's so wonderful to see such creatures in real life, the majestic tigers' stride who came so close the ranger felt the need to make him move away from us. To stroke a lemur and have monkeys jump on the car. Surprisingly the employees didn't give us much cautionary guidance or instruction and we were able to walk around with wallabies and spider monkeys to name a few. We were fairly cowardly in our attempts to stroke the animals, our hands coming so close yet so far. Just as we were being told to go I managed to be brave enough to stroke a lemur! Look at his lil face! He looks scared but he was properly loving it. I definitely recommend Safari parks :). Animals are such funny creatures. Even the English weather was on our side, it may of been abit nippy but it didn't rain. 

Monday, 7 January 2013

Create a Collar

I'm super excited to announce my guest post over on Lovely Serendipity, a blog by the wonderful Gia all the way in Auckland, New Zealand! The post is a tutorial for the Peter Pan style collar shown above, a fun way to customise any top or dress and make it unique.  Tutorial here. While you're over there be sure to check out Gia's blog and enjoy her humour :), I certainly do. 

I love to collaborate and meet everyone, feel free to contact me if you have any ideas :D.  

Friday, 4 January 2013

Onwards and Upwards Welcome 2013

My NYE was spilt into two parts; spending the day with my very talented Stylist friend Gladmore and then heading to London for the evening with the beautiful Britt whom you may recognise from our spontaneous holiday to the Greek island Kos during the summer. When so many of us have gone off to uni in different ends of the country we tend to only see one another during the small window of our semester holidays and thus the last time I saw these wonderful people was in the summer. 

Kiera wears: Disco Pants River Island |  Lace Top Next | Denim Jacket The Ragged Priest | Aztec Detail Hoodie Topman  | Bowler Hat Topshop 
Gladmore wears: Disco Pants  American Apparel | Shirt Topman | Hoodie Primark | Necklace New Look   

Gladmore and I went to Wagamama and as it was her first time she trusted my recommendation of the Chicken Katsu Curry. I still find the seating set up pretty strange as it's a minimalistic restaurant come canteen and so you end up seated right next to strangers unless you're with a big group. I have no idea how to use chopsticks and instead of copping out and using a knife and fork we both cheated and used the children's chopsticks. Our outfits were very matching with us both sporting disco pants, hoodies and oversized denim jackets. It's still pretty chilly. We browsed the shops but neither of us were in a shopping mood, I wish I'd been more organised with my NYE outfit this year. I wanted to do a glitter dip dye ponytail *inspiration here* but left it too late and Boots didn't have any glitter hair spray left and everywhere else was shut. I may do it for another event though as it's such a fun idea.  

In the evening Britt & I caught the train to London, as a lovely NYE gift the tubes (& other various public transportation) were free between 11:30pm-4am! We aimed to go to a YSA dance at the Hyde Park chapel on Exhibition Road (South Kensington tube station), however we typically turned up late and most people had already gone down to watch the fireworks. We wondered through London looking for a good viewpoint ending up by the Hyde Park Corner tube station. We could see ok, but considering the amount we walked we were still fairly far away. I absolutely love Kensington and Chelsea, they're so awe inspiringly beautiful. The building are incredible, so elegant and grand. Imagine owning or living in one of those *dream trance*. Even the typical Chelsea style street signs get me excited! I seriously need to go to London more often, I may go again next week before I drift off back to the land of the North. It was so lovely catching up and enjoying our spontaneous friendship.

2013 Goals
Having goals and aspirations in life is very important to me. It baffles me when people aimlessly wonder in life with no future perspective or without making any active effort to better themselves. I love learning, new experiences, new people and generally being super excited about life. Regardless of the time of year I have goals, plans and aspirations, yet as tradition dictates I have decided to compile those specific to 2013.   
  • Read more literature 
  • Start painting again
  • Part time job-> save for summer
  • Get a 2.1 in the second year of my degree
  • Exercise more and get beautifully toned: Try out Insanity 
  • Learn to swim
  • Travel; preferably Europe and possibly work abroad 
  • Be an EFY Counsellor 
  • Keep working on & enjoying my blog
  • Learn to properly use & potentially own a DSLR 
  • Generally be happy and love life

Thursday, 3 January 2013

You Fancy Huh | Fashion

*pink text: hyperlinks
Leather Jacket Topshop Lavender Blouse Matalan Skirt Primark Shoes New Look Spike Bracelet Claires (similar here) 

I do have a NYE post ready for posting, I'm just waiting on some photos. So in the meantime here's a lovely outfit post :). This is the typical attire I've been wearing to church recently. It seems the winter-esque has creeped into my brain resulting in pairing darker tones and wearing more black. A colour I enjoy shying away from, much preferring the pastel tones of spring and warmth of summer. The jacket is a lovely number I picked up from Topshop at the beginning of the academic year, the only negative of which is that the sleeves have zips going up a few inches on the cuffs which previously would catch on my hair yet after folding them over slightly it has worked a treat and makes it much more comfortable and practical to use. I seem to have made a mental pact to constantly wear heels to church, as of September I can recall only wearing flat shoes once or twice. I hope you've all had a wonderful New Years Eve and are looking forward to an incredible 2013. 
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