Thursday, 31 December 2015

YOUTUBE | WHAT I GOT FOR CHRISTMAS 2015

A short but sweet video sharing some of the things I got for Christmas this year. My friends and family did really well seeing as I had no idea what I wanted and didn't ask for anything in particular. I felt very spoiled indeed and hope they all enjoyed my presents for them too!


What was your favourite thing that you got for Christmas this year? x

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Monday, 28 December 2015

OOTD | NEW YEAR'S EVE


Boohoo dress* (also available in black) / Zara heels (old but similar) / ASOS earrings

I'm not really the clubbing type of gal and the past NYE's I've had the pleasure of spending in London, I've celebrated by going to a park to watch the fireworks and they've been nothing short of perfect. That said, I still love a good excuse to get dolled up and if I do decide to go out to dinner or a party, you'll most likely find me ditching anything sequinned or bodycon for a vintage-style skater dress because that's just my jam. I'd never shopped on Boohoo.com before but was pleasantly surprised to find this gorgeous lace dress that seemed right up my alley. I reckon the fit and quality of the dress is quite amazing for the £30 price tag and I adore the super detailed lace pattern, reminds me of something For Love & Lemons would do. I paired it with my rose gold Zara heels that I've had for years and never fail to whip out for a special occasion, the heel height is perfect for a klutz like me and I can walk around in them all night without any pain. I've also been practicing more braid styles. I've mastered dutch braids if they're on the side of my head but I'm still struggling to do one on the back of my head because I can't see what I'm doing with my fingers. Lo and behold, the stunning Rebecca of A Clothes Horse (one of my favourite blogs to read) did a tutorial on this pull-through braid that almost exactly resembles a Dutch braid but requires no actual braiding at all (whaaa?) It's seriously a match made in heaven for a hairstyle noob like me and I'm still working on making it neater for next time. Don't think it looks too bad for my first go though!

Have you got your NYE outfit sorted? Regardless of whether you're going out or not, I hope you have a fantastic time ringing in the new year!


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Saturday, 26 December 2015

THEATRE | THE THREE KINGS STARRING THOMAS SANGSTER

Happy holidays you lovely lot! Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. I've been on a role with all the Christmassy theatre productions lately, it's been a wonderfully festive way to spend time in the lead up to to the big day. I almost didn't hear about this little play though, it only ran for a week therefore quite easy to miss if you weren't clued up (I recommend following London theatres on twitter as well as checking out the arts section in the newspapers). Held at the Studio in St. James Theatre (which isn't the main auditorium space), The Three Kings is a short Christmas themed comedy by Gordon Rider that sees Thomas Sangster (Game of Thrones, The Maze Runner) take on the lead role as a builder on a break with his friend from work.

St. James Theatre is a throughly modern and pleasant affair. The first time I visited was to see Dianna Agron in Mcqueen the Play which was held in the main Theatre space. The Studio, it turns out, is in the basement, which I had no idea existed until then. Going down the stairs leads to a bar area with a small elevated stage to its left. The seats are simply cafe chairs and mini round tables positioned around the stage in a 'theatre setup' and there is a balcony area with more plush armchairs and tabled that acts as the 'circle' part. I'm not sure whether the furniture gets reverted back into a cafe/lounge setup whenever there isn't a play on but I must admit it's a simple yet effective use of the space.

The play is basically set in a bar where work mates Block and Tackle discuss their mundane lives. After Block reveals that his missus forgot his birthday over the weekend, he enquires when Tackle's is and is thoroughly shocked when he reveals his birthday in fact falls on Christmas day. After some initial disbelief, a series of strange events happen as Tackle is delivered some mysterious gifts from unknown suitors and Block starts to wonder whether his friend being born on the 25th of December is really a coincidence at all...
Antony Eden and Thomas Sangster deliver some hilarious banter as Block and Tackle respectively, pretty much every line had me chuckling and the pair are seriously magnetic to watch despite the characters' potty mouths and stubborn attitudes (which probably means they pulled it really well). Vanessa-Faye Stanley, who is the only actress in the play, unexpectedly takes the spotlight as the  free-spirited and quirky bartender who ends up being quite the voice of reason. She also switches to play other minor characters in the blink of an eye which I found super impressive especially seeing as they were all vastly different in mannerisms and appearance. The play is quite short (the entire thing clocks in at 35 minutes with no interval) but definitely packs a punch.

The Three Kings is now over (sad face as it only ran for a week) but check out St James Theatre for more plays.

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Wednesday, 23 December 2015

LIFESTYLE | OUR CHRISTMAS TREE (2015 EDITION)


Here are a few snapshots of our Christmas tree this year. This is the second time we've had a real living Christmas tree in the house and with that comes all the excitement of choosing the right one and then of course, decorating it! We picked up our tree from the local park and with our dog Fischer's help (he loves to get involved every year), chose a 7 foot Nordman Fir (which apparently is a variety that lasts the longest indoors). Thought it would be fun to make this kind of post an annual thing and document our trees starting from now. Last year I somehow landed firm decorating rights to our tree and it ended up being a Game of Thrones themed tree (oh I know you're not surprised at all), but this year my housemates and I all got together to bedazzle it so it's more of a mish-mash of baubles. I think it still looks lovely though as everything fit into a neutral colour scheme with pops of red. I re-used my GoT baubles and Iron Throne ornament that I got from the HBO shop and most of the other decorations are from John Lewis. There are a few London themed ones of course to reflect my Anglophilia, and some feathered ones that I picked out after seeing them in Louise's unboxing video and falling in love with them too. A couple of cute animal and dog figurines feature as we are all avid animal lovers and the final thing that we are yet to place are the lights, but we found a couple of simple flashing red and white LED lights at Habitat that were already 50% off, score!

What does your tree look like this year? Any particular theme?

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Sunday, 20 December 2015

THEATRE | THE DEAD - READ BY AIDAN GILLEN


I was pretty gutted when I missed out on tickets to see one of my favourite actors do a reading at the Globe last year but perhaps due to the great response they've decided to repeat the performance this winter not only once but six times, yay! Seeing as I was not about to take any chances this time, I booked tickets the first day they went on sale and managed to secure second row seats on the opening night. The reading is held at the Sam Wanaker Playhouse, a newer, completely indoor theatre next to Shakespeare's Globe, which uses candlelight as it's only form of illuminance. My first time at the Playhouse was seeing The Duchess of Malfi (starring Gemma Arterton) in early 2014 and I fell in love with it's old fashioned wooden decor, though I have to admit, the benches aren't the most comfortable after the two hour mark.

It pains me to say that I wasn't previously familiar with the work of James Joyce but apparently The Dead is the longest in his collection of short stories entitled Dubliners. It tells the tale of a university professor named Gabriel Conroy who attends an annual Feast of the Epiphany dance and dinner party with his wife Gretta. The event draws together a variety of family members and friends and the story goes on in great detail about the comings and goings of the evening. Despite initially worrying about it, Gabriel gives a speech in which he asserts that people shouldn't linger on the past and the dead and instead thrive in the present with the living. After the party has ended and Gabriel and his wife are back at the hotel, Gretta bursts into tears and recounts her youth spent with a boy who died waiting for her outside her window in the cold. Gabriel then has quite the epiphany, wondering if he ever knew his wife at all and contemplating his own mortality.
"His soul swooned softly as he heard the snow falling faint through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their lat end, upon all the living and the dead."

Feargal Murray plays a beautiful introduction on the piano before Aidan Gillen (Game of Thrones, The Wire) takes to the stage in a tuxedo and starts the story. Possessing a rather short attention span, I often find readings can get a bit boring after a while but let me tell you this was not the case with this one and I'm 99% sure that I'm not biased. Though perhaps it had everything to do with Aidan Gillen's narration, which is captivating to the point where I'm not sure whether he is the world's best storyteller or... I'm just biased. Anywho, his narration is a far cry from the quieter muttering I'm used to hearing in press interviews and such, and accompanied periodically by the soaring piano accompaniment, he really takes you deep into the story and encompasses the world around you so much so that you can almost taste the food that is being served at the dinner party. By the end, the short story felt entirely too erm, short, though it stayed with me for quite a long while after. It's quite interesting how much laughter you can get out of the audience from such a realist and ultimately dark piece of literature too.

Of course my friend and I hung around to meet Aidan at stage door too. We'd just heard that the next night's performance had been cancelled super last minute, "Yeah, it's due to scheduling..." he said and having heard rumours that it was because he had to fly to Belfast, I pressed, "Has Game of Thrones not finished filming for the year?"
To which he replied, "No." Which is a little strange since they had the Season 6 wrap party a couple of days prior? Hmmm, slightly mysterious.
Anyway Aidan was super lovely as always and seemed happy to oblige signing a few things for us. He took his time trying to figure out where the best place to sign on my friend's GoT promotional photo was since both Littlefinger and Sansa are wearing such dark clothing in it and we had a black marker.
"You could always sign at the top." I suggested at the space above their heads.
"Yes but Sophie signed here (on the cape) and it turned out fine!" he pointed out. So it was approximately ten more minutes (perhaps a slight exaggeration but that's definitely what it felt like) of him and I lightly arguing before my friend found a silver marker at the bottom of her bag. Major face palm moment. When I pulled out my GoT DVD, he was yet again stumped as to where to sign, but this time because the entirety of one surface was already covered with other actor's autographs. I told him to sign on the other side as I'd saved that front side for him and he smiled saying, "Oh, the best part."
After we took photos he said that he was off to grab some food and he told us to stay warm and we waved our goodbyes.

The Dead is playing at Shakespeare's Globe until the 28th of December. Tickets and more info can be found here.

Have you been to a reading before?

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Friday, 18 December 2015

OOTD | SUEDE SHIRT DRESS

ASOS suede dress (on sale) / ASOS flats / Givenchy bag / Daniel Wellington watch

Admittedly this outfit is from a while ago, back when it was acceptable (and bearable) for bare legs and short sleeves. This dress is quite warm actually, so it's perfectly doable now with some opaque tights and a coat thrown over but I thought when better to post an outfit where in hindsight I resemble Christmas in human form? I realise I have to be more mindful now with bright hair when it comes to what colours I wear on my body but in all honesty, I don't really think about it much when I'm getting dressed. Alas putting on a red dress while I had lime green hair probably wasn't the best move but... I could say it's all in the spirit of Christmas!



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Wednesday, 16 December 2015

FASHION | PRIMARK PRESS DAY SS16


It seemed like only a mere moment ago I was having a field day about Autumn/Winter fashion and being able to layer everything and wear snazzy coats but after taking a peek at Primark's Spring/Summer 2016 collection during their press day, I find myself in an instant, dreaming of spring already! There's a gorgeous range of floaty, romantic dresses, tops and skirts in varying shades of cream and peach to coordinate or mix and match, I'm obsessed with all the lace pieces they've got going on and I already have my eye on a particular white dress with beautiful cape sleeves, can't wait till it hits stores next year. If girly is not really your style, there's also loads of amazing 70s inspired pieces that would be perfect for festival wear: dungarees, suede, fringing, the works! To top it all off, the new season sunglasses are all to die for! Primark please, just take all my paychecks already...

What do you think of this sneak peek? Are you as excited as I am about Primark's new season?
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Saturday, 12 December 2015

OOTD | TILE


Zara dress / ASOS hat / Alexander Wang boots / Givenchy bag / Attack on Titan keyring / Necklace (borrowed from my mum)

Please excuse my hair here, it was at the stage where the grey toner was fading but I wasn't sure what colour I wanted to go next... looking back, the dip dye look definitely doesn't work with blonde ends (just resembled a terrible ombre job) but I made the most of it and just attempted to rock it for the time being. I featured this dress in my Singapore haul up on Youtube, it happens to have everything that appeals to me right now: velvet, flared sleeves, a high neck, and deep autumnal shades. 

I seem to have accumulated a large amount of outfit photos that I've shot but haven't managed to find the time to blog about, I'm gonna attempt to trickle them out by the end of the year but as you can imagine it's been a little manic in the household in the lead up to Christmas. I've just about finished all my Christmas shopping and today my flatmates and I are off to look for the perfect tree. We need a small one so it'll fit in our modest abode but a cute one nonetheless. No doubt we'll bring our dog tree hunting too, he has to have the final say as he'll be the one peeing on it over the next few weeks!

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