Sunday, 21 January 2018

DEALING WITH DOWN DAYS & HOW I PICK MYSELF BACK UP


How do I begin this? I really dislike to sound like I'm complaining so I feel anxious to reveal this... but I'm not going to lie and pretend it's all been rainbows and roses because to be frank, 2018 hasn't been off to the best start for me. For starters I dislocated my knee and am only just transitioning off the crutches, and then not long after but totally unrelated to my injury things at work took a different turn which naturally shook up any prior sense of certainty. I was still trying to figure it all out when my mum fell sick whilst she was visiting. Fortunately she's on the mend now but looking after someone whilst you're unable to move around freely was tougher than I would have thought. On top of that, this all seemed to happen whilst it was my time of the month (TMI sorry) and as you might be able to imagine I had to juggle everything with the mood swings and migraines. Anyway that was more for context than to moan because the point of this post is during these few weeks the silver lining was that I slowly learnt how to keep afloat. I don't throw the word depression around lightly but I do know the feeling of hopelessness closing in on you and there's no way of escape. Unfortunately I've not yet discovered any miraculous, instantaneous way to turn my feelings and thoughts in a positive 180 degree direction but I have been able to pick up on how to deal with times of turmoil and come to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I thought I'd share some of the ways that have really helped me out recently.


Cry it out
I don't know about you but I'm a bloody introvert and I tend to just bottle up everything I'm feeling inside because I don't want anyone else to know. Well from experience if you fill a container past capacity, it's going to explode sooner or later. I've found that crying to be very therapeutic indeed and a great first step to letting out all those pent up emotions. Afterwards I guarantee you will have a much clearer head to figure out how to go about your problems.

Keep a diary
Take yourself back to those highschool days because writing your feelings down is also a good form of stress relief as well as a way to communicate how you feel if you (like me) are not so good at talking about it. Sharing your letter with others that are involved or who may be able to help has also been really beneficial for me, I've had people tell me it's a lot easier for them to understand the situation through written words.

Treat yourself to your favourite meal
Or dessert (or even better, both!) and don't feel guilty about it. Make an occasion of it and meet up with a loved one to catch up and chat. The topic doesn't have to touch your problems, before you know it you'll soon have your mind taken off it by laughing about other things and it's a good reminder that dwelling on it won't make it go away anyway, so why not let your mind take a break.

Laughter is the best medicine
It truly is. Release those happy endorphins by joking with friends or watching a funny YouTube video. This week I've been found rolling around on the floor, clutching my stomach at these Peaky Blinders impressions and Cooking with Finn Wolfhard.


Don't be ashamed to ask others for help
This was a big one for me because one of the reasons I don't tell people what I'm feeling is because I feel like I don't want to bother them. Take it from me, most of the people in your life will be happy to hear you out and help out in whichever way possible. If I were in their shoes, I most certainly would feel touched if anyone entrusted me enough to not only share their high points but their low ones too. Plus helping a friend is one of the most rewarding feelings ever and if you believe in karma then what goes around, comes around.

Put on your favourite film
As a bit of a film buff, this has always been a quick go-to solution for me ever since I was a youngin' It doesn't necessarily have to be a feel good type of film, if you're like me and a lot of your favourite movies are more on the sad side, I've found that just the association with visual stimulus that you identify as beautiful will make you feel better (plus if it makes you cry then it also helps in the way of point one).

Cuddle an animal
Or if you don't have a pet or one you have easy access to, look after a plant. Stroking fur or watering a plant are both calming activities that reduce stress and there's something so special about pouring love into another living being.

Throw yourself into some arts and crafts
Draw, paint, sculpt, knit, stitch, you name it! Don't feel pressure at what it has to look like in the end, you're not going to be graded on this so just enjoy it like a hobby. I sometimes talk myself out of creating new artwork with excuses such as the fact that it's too time-consuming and I could use the time to do something more "productive" but once I get into it the rhythmic strokes of my pencil soothe me and there's nothing more rewarding than seeing a sketch come to life.

Alexa Chung jumper / ASOS jeans / ASOS boots / Miss Pap bag / Accessorize beret / Missoma x Lucy Williams necklace

My ultimate advice on getting through tough times would be to, first of all, acknowledge them (don't deny them and push them away), take a moment to simply let yourself feel, then work through your problems using the logical side of your brain. Try not to let your emotional side get involved and dwell on things but don't beat yourself up if you do. We're humans and emotional beings after all. Anytime you start to feel drained, take the time out for self-care and recharge yourself with positivity and happiness. I'm pleased to report that I'm doing a lot better as I type this, as always it's important to remember that these slumps are only phases and to keep pushing through until you come out stronger. 

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Sunday, 14 January 2018

MIKE WHEELER


I don't think I've ever gotten as many questions about where I got an item of clothing as much as this Mike Wheeler t-shirt! So here it is answered in one place, this was from Topshop and the collaboration they did with Stranger Things last year. Unfortunately I don't think it's available anymore (at least not online, I'm not sure what they did with leftover stock in stores) as you can imagine if you didn't experience it yourself firsthand, the popularity and ensuing madness of a collection launch such as this. In fact, let me tell you a little story. I decided to rock up to the Topshop flagship store in central London at 8am on the morning of the Topshop x Stranger Things collection release (store opens at 9.30am and there was already a queue) because I wasn't going to take any chances with trying to battle online. Fortunately the wait didn't feel very long and as soon as they opened I ran to the corner where they had all the collaboration items displayed and grabbed one of everything on each arm (my tactic for shopping limited edition collections is to grab everything in sight first then sort through which pieces you actually want in the fitting room). Also I already had a clear plan in my head (and on my phone) about which particular items I wanted most so that would affect the order in which I grabbed things if you know what I mean. Ok so, the one t-shirt design that I had to have from this collection was this one: print of Mike Wheeler and his walkie talkie with his quote "I'm done. Over." which I thought would be a pretty apt slogan tee to describe my 24/7 mood anyway. I scanned the entire section at the store a few times before I came to the conclusion that the one t-shirt I came for was in fact... not there. At this point I pulled over a staff member to enquire about this bizarre situation, showing her the t-shirt on their website. She gave me a puzzled frown and said that it should in fact be here and that it probably meant that the one box containing this store's stock of this tee was on another delayed truck. Just my luck! I asked her when the truck was estimated to get in but she quite honestly that she didn't know and I would just have to stick around and wait in store. It's not such a bad idea, the store was warm and comfortable plus they had some awesome Stranger Things inspired displays, activities, and photo ops to celebrate the launch, including Castle Byers, an arcade in the Upside Down, Eleven's coke can test room and Hawkin's school lockers. However once I had visited all of them and checked back to find that the truck still hadn't arrived, the effects of getting up so early in the morning started to catch up on me. I decided to just try my luck online for this shirt and lo and behold it was still available! So I purchased it through the Topshop website whilst I was standing in the middle of the Topshop flagship store, the irony still makes me chuckle to this day. But hey, I got what I wanted even though I took the long-winded route! 

To be honest it was worth all the effort too because I've been wearing this tee to death. You might have already seen it in my Germany vlog where I styled it with lace up trousers and a leopard coat.  It's become my equivalent to a black band tee, except like, nerdier. Today I've opted to team it with this Gucci-esque metallic skirt which I love to add a touch of pizzazz to any casual outfit but is perfect for party wear too!

Topshop x Stranger Things t-shirt / Topshop skirt / Vans shoes / Gucci bag / ASOS beanie / Lucy Williams x Missoma necklace

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Wednesday, 10 January 2018

PLUM CORDUROY DUNGAREES


I most definitely didn't expect to be back in corduroy almost twenty years after my mum dressed me in a flared pair of trousers that I ended up wearing for most of my childhood days but here I am... rocking them in plum dungaree form. Felt extremely nostalgic to say the least. Admittedly the first thing that drew me to this ASOS number were the tie shoulders. The freedom of torso length is something that's often lost with a pair of dungarees so I thought these would be comfortable in that sense, though they do add a nice, unexpected, feminine touch to a stereotypically boyish piece. Styled them with a rainbow jumper underneath because my wardrobe is overflowing with a whole variety of them at the moment. Also these shoulder ties are super secure, I had the sneaking suspicion that they would gradually come undone after a length of time or more so with boisterous movement but this was happily proven wrong.

ASOS dungarees / Mango jumper / Converse trainers / Lolita bag (gift from friend)

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Sunday, 7 January 2018

WHERE DO I GET MY STYLE INSPIRATION FROM?


I'm often asked where I get my style inspiration from. To be honest the general answer is always here and there, I seem to take in a lot of my surroundings day to day. London is bursting with arts and culture and I've found living in this city to be the best for a constant source of ideas and creation.  At times even the most mundane things like the colour of a wall along the street I'm walking down will spark an urge in me to try something out with it fashion-wise. More often, streetstyle probably has the biggest impact on me. I find almost everyone in every corner of this city so fashionable in their own unique way and I catch myself mentally noting down people's ensembles as I walk past them. I've never been one to be afraid of trying something different when it comes to personal style, in fact I find testing out a wider, eclectic range of styles to be the best way to hone in on what really works for you. 


This particular ensemble was actually inspired by a look Aidan Gillen wore in an Esquire magazine shoot. I was immediately taken by the colour combination of navy, mustard, and bottle green, almost like primary colours but muted for the colder season. I absolutely love the way these colours look together and had never thought to pair them before. I dug out pieces I'd already had in the back of my wardrobe (for example, my coat is Primark instead of Aidan's £1200 Kent & Curwen number) but this is why I've previously mentioned that I quite like drawing inspo from mens fashion too, it's often a lot more wearable and therefore replicable. 


For example, even though I'm always struck by Bella Hadid's off-duty style, a lot of the pieces she wears are pretty unrealistic for a day-to-day basis in London (nor do I have the figure for them might I add) so I kind of pick and choose certain silhouettes, texture and colour combinations that I see on her and work them into my own outfits. I used to look to fellow fashion bloggers a lot for inspo too but much more recently I've felt that everyone is starting to look a little too samey. Same wavy balayage hair. Same Gucci bag. My whole life I've wanted to look 'different' (hence my scene kid days and the fact that I presently have trouble keeping a hair colour for more than a few months), but I can't help being influenced by others. There can be no creation without imitation after all, anyone who denies that is lying.


Primark coat (almost identical alternative) / Green top (old) / ASOS trousers (sold out but similar) / Dr Martens brogues / ASOS earrings (sold out but similar)


Long answer short: I'm alternately inspired by bloggers, editorials, my favourite celebrities, and London streetstyle. I think my constant roving eye and unquenchable urge to always try something new and different is the reason that I've not yet been able to pinpoint how to define my personal style. Maybe the best way to describe it would be: versatile. At this moment in time I can't conform to a specific style because I'm so open to stepping out of my comfort zone and switching up my looks as often as the wind chops and changes. 



PS. I still have pink hair, these photos are just old. I almost forgot about them but decided I liked them too much to leave them out. Plus I've been on crutches so it's a little difficult to shoot new outfit photos!
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Monday, 1 January 2018

18 GOALS FOR 2018


Happy New Year you lovely lot! Hope you're not too hungover from last night (at least that you're still able to read this hehe). Apologies for the lack of New Year's Eve dress inspo posts last year (that feels weird to say as it was only yesterday), I skipped any form of NYE festivities because of the ultra glamorous reason that I actually quite badly dislocated my knee last month and was in a wheelchair for the earlier half of it and am now still hobbling around on crutches. Despite obviously being out of action for quite some time, I don't think anyone who didn't see me in real life would have had any inkling before this as I didn't mention the accident anywhere on social media nor did I take any photos from the waist down since I came back from Germany. Take this as a good example that you should never compare your lives to someone else's (especially not a blogger's/influencer's) instagram feed as people really do filter out the "not so pretty" moments. Anyway I think the best way to start the new year is with some fresh goals for the future so without further adieu here are 18 of mine for 2018...


ASOS vinyl trench coat / Topshop pierced tee / ASOS trousers / Topshop x Stranger Things cap / Gucci bag / ASOS boots


1. Stop dying my hair
Yes ok this may come as a shock to y'all but I've been growing out my roots this winter as over two years of constant re-bleaching has left me with a tonne of breakage. People weren't lying when they said bleach is addictive and I'm suffering from a terrible case of itchy fingers trying to leave my hair alone. Maybe when I get my hair back to an acceptable state I'll consider going back to the fantasy dyes.

2. Master wigs
Going hand in hand with my first goal, I'm not exactly ready to leave my fantasy coloured locks behind so I've been playing around with wigs (especially whilst it's still colder in the winter) and I reckon they are a good way for me to continue the colours without damaging my hair and allowing the time for my natural hair to rest and grow. I'm relatively new to the world of wigs outside of cosplay but I've found some lace front ones that look quite realistic so I'm hoping to fine-tune my application skills so I can wear them more often.

3. Meet Sally Hawkins, Doug Jones & Guillermo Del Toro
Three people I haven't met before and they are responsible for my new favourite film The Shape of Water so I really want to meet them and tell them how much of an impact their work has had on me. Also if there's time I want to show them that I was the girl behind the first Elisa cosplay that they noticed on twitter (maybe just maybe they'll remember my moon face?), and I guess it'll be another goal for me not to cry in front of them hehe.

4. Expand my blog
I'm definitely nowhere near becoming a full-time blogger so that won't be a realistic goal for 2018 but I want to take steps towards that so I'm going to make my blog the best it's ever been, with more creative and engaging content! I want to brainstorm new ideas for blog posts, further improve my writing and up my photography game. With this hopefully more opportunities will come my way too and I can extend my comfort zone with work and networking.

5. Build a capsule wardrobe
I have to say I'm getting better at not buying into every single trend that surfaces but alas I'm still a magpie when it comes to anything rainbow, glittery, or remotely quirky looking. Don't think there's anything wrong with this but I do want to collect a solid foundation of clothes that I can rely on for basics and to build outfits around that will hopefully lead to the longevity of these core items instead of contributing to fast fashion.

6. Stop watching Game of Thrones
For real this time. I make this resolution almost every year but it does get increasingly harder to avoid when the new season actually rolls around. This year I vow to be strong enough not to watch a single episode of this show for my own mental well-being whilst somehow still support Sophie Turner.

7. Find another TV series to obsess over
With Game of Thrones Stranger Things and Peaky Blinders not due to return to our screens till 2019, I definitely need to find a new show to fill my TV void in 2018. Any suggestions?


8. Join a weekly yoga class
I used to practice yoga at home a lot (loved following Yoga With Adriene on YouTube) but since we moved, our place is significantly smaller and doesn't leave much room to even roll out one mat. I find yoga to be great for calming down, de-stressing and just generally a more relaxed state of mind so I'm looking into signing up for my local class (now if my knee would just fully heal, thank you).

9. Hit 1000 subscribers on YouTube
Even though I'm finding it more and more difficult to grow on different social media platforms, I've really started to enjoy YouTube and get into the mojo of filming. I want to become more comfortable talking to myself in front of the camera, be able to edit a video of myself without cringing once, chat more freely about different topics and upload more frequently.

10. Collaborate with another YouTuber
I think my first time filming with someone else will be a step out of my comfort zone but so much fun! Definitely something I'd like to happen in 2018 so if anyone would like to do a fun video with me, please let me know.

11. Learn Chevaliers de Sangreal on the piano
The Da Vinci Code isn't one of my favourite films but there's something about this soaring score from Hans Zimmer that pulls at my heartstrings. I love this version of it transposed to piano but it is admittedly a little out of my skillset. Perhaps if I keep practising, I can achieve it though because one thing about being self-taught is that you have to keep pushing yourself so you don't get stuck on the same skill level.

12. Listen to others and develop more empathy
I strive to be more attentive and considerate to others. Even though actively listening sounds simple, for me it is actually the hardest type of communication skill, to really hear what others have to say. I hope it will make me a better person too.

13. Experience IAMX live again
My one constant in life and the greatest love of my life. His music heals me. I'm very pleased and excited that this will definitely be happening in March!


14. Up my cosplay game
Three years ago I started cosplaying for the first time and last year I finally felt like a legitimate cosplayer. I've done a fair few now, all of which I'm extremely proud of but this year I want to challenge myself to craft more aspects of costumes to make them more film/TV/book accurate and perhaps this is the year I try pulling off a male cosplay.

15. Travel by myself
My best friend Emily has embarked on many overseas adventures all by herself and this has inspired me to do the same. I've flown by myself many times but have always met up with friends and family at a destination. There's something that seems so scary yet liberating about diving head first into another country and culture without knowing or relying on a single other soul. The thing is this is probably easier imagined than actually executed as being a blogger, I constantly need someone to be taking photos of me... I wonder if I could put that trust in a stranger.

16. Visit the Inception bridge
Its actual name is the Pont de Bir-Hakeim and this has been a goal of mine since the film came out in 2009 but the last time I went to Paris it was a whirlwind trip and I somehow managed to forget. Gahhh. Hopefully this is the year I will get the chance to shoot some photos for the blog at this stunning dream location.

17. Eat healthier
This is always part of everyone's New Year's resolutions. I want to eat healthier without going on diets (which have really had dire consequences on my digestion in the past, I'd never recommend them). I aim to consume sugar more sparingly, cut out more processed foods and intake a whole lot more fruit and veggies! Hopefully this will give me more energy as well as decrease the frequency of the migraines that I often suffer from.

18. Live in the the moment
Mum constantly tells me to believe in the "power of now" and I've always found this easier said then done. I'm a constant worrier simply because I think too much about "what if" and dwell on the past that I'm unable to change anyway. I'm going to make a conscious effort to practice just taking things day by day.

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Thursday, 28 December 2017

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