Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Outfit: holiday holly

It's time for things to get a little festive around here! And what a way to kick things off, as this dress is perfect for Christmas parties around the land and I've waited a long time to show it off!

Of all of the pieces Hell Bunny released this season, this dress was the one that really caught my eye. I love seasonal noveltywear, but it's easy to go quite far down the tacky route without even trying, thanks to all of the jumpers you see pop up every year now. This holly print isn't like that though - it's quite obviously Christmassy, but oh so tastefully done, especially when added to this 50s style dress. I really think it's quite elegant, in a way a lot of novelty-prints often aren't. You'll find my 20% off discount code below, if you take a fancy to it yourself.

I didn't want to add too much to this outfit, but a special hairpiece was required. Luckily, the lovely and fantastically-appropriately named Holly at Alternate Normality, jumped to the challenge of creating a matching hair comb. When I previewed this comb on my Instagram, a lot of my followers seemed to love it as much as I do - and now they and you can own your own as Holly put them into production! I paid for my comb and I don't get commission, but I want you to all check out her Christmas range because it's fantastic this year. Support small businesses :) 

And that's really all I have to say today because this outfit speaks for itself! Oh, other than to mention that things are going to be changing soon around here - I'm very close to launching my new blog, which doesn't look all too different from this one, but it's a lot swisher! I'm hoping that may happen this week, but one or two last issues to smooth out... Don't be surprised if you drop back one day to find things look new around here, though!

The Holly berry 50's dress by Hell Bunny review

The Holly berry 50's dress by Hell Bunny review

The Holly berry 50's dress by Hell Bunny review

The Holly berry 50's dress by Hell Bunny review

The Holly berry 50's dress by Hell Bunny review

The Holly berry 50's dress by Hell Bunny review

The Holly berry 50's dress by Hell Bunny review

The Holly berry 50's dress by Hell Bunny review

The Holly berry 50's dress by Hell Bunny review

The Holly berry 50's dress by Hell Bunny review
Dress: Holly berry 50's dress c/o Hell Bunny (code CICIM20!% gets you 20% off)
Shoes: Vivienne Westwood x Melissa (old)



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Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Makeup: Dirty Works cosmetics range review

Dirty Works makeup range review 2017

A little while ago, I introduced you all to the Dirty Works skincare range - and I really am still using that moisturiser and face scrub all the time! When they asked if I'd like to try out their brand new makeup range, I managed to word a politer response than 'gimme!!!', but that's definitely what I was thinking.

A box of complimentary goodies arrived at my door, containing a nude eyeshadow palette, set of lip crayons, a brow kit, a blush/bronzer/highlighter kit and a couple of brushes. I used all of the products to create this face*:

Dirty Works makeup range review 2017

Not bad! Some products I liked more than others, but the great thing about all of them is, like with the skincare, they're really reasonable, so find just one thing you like and you're laughing. Here's what I thought about each product...

Dirty Works makeup range review 2017

Back to Basics Eyeshadow Palette

This looked like a version of the Urban Decay Naked palettes, so it was definitely the one I was most excited about. If it worked, for £8 it'd be a significant bargain over those! I'll admit, my hopes weren't high because I've bought many a cheaper palette and found the eyeshadow had so little pigment I couldn't even tell I had it on half the time. I prepped my lids as I always do, with foundation, concealer, powder and a layer of eyeshadow primer (they're veiny and gross, trust me they need all that). Then I used the second shade from the left in the picture as a base over the lid, and the third from the left in the crease (a matte light brown). I then added fifth from the left (a darker matte brown) and I was quite pleased with the subtle, but definitely there finished look. I know from experience that what is subtle in real life doesn't always show in photos, so I used the matte black in the corners and crease to darken the brown down (there's a good picture of the shadow later on in this post).

What really impressed me with this set was firstly - they maybe don't have quite the pigment of the Urban Decay shadows, but it really wasn't bad at all. I've had much worse from big drugstore makeup brands. Secondly, they applied really smoothly, blended like a dream and wore well all day. Thirdly, there's a full-size double-ended brush in this kit, and the soft, rounded brush was fantastic for both applying and blending. I would have paid £8 just for that brush alone!

Re-purchase? I haven't tried all the shades yet and I tend to find I take several goes with a palette before it becomes a favourite, but it has the makings of one that I reach for for a more subtle look, for sure.

Wow Brows Eyebrow Kit

You get a tube of brow gel, and then a little kit of two brown powders, a highlighter powder, and miniature tweezers, brow brush and angled powder brush in a compartment underneath. That's some kit - it'd be great for taking on holiday! I found that combining the two powders, one which is ashy, one which is warmer, came closest to my shade. I found the powder wasn't as pigmented as I wanted - I'm used to my Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade which is the definition of a pigmented brow product, and I just don't find fine powders my favourite for filling in my brows. I've got weird naked patches and one of my eyebrows has to be overdrawn to be more symmetrical and cover up the direction the hairs grow in (the wrong flipping way) and the finished effect was ok, but it wasn't as sharp as I personally like my brows to be. I also couldn't see the highlighter powder on my skin whatsoever - which has happened before, I think I'm so pale I sometimes match highlighters!

Re-purchase? I love all the little extras, but brow powders just aren't my bag and I needed more pigment. If you like a more natural brow and want a travel kit this would no doubt be a good choice for you. Also, the tube of brow gel I rather like and am still using!

Dirty Works makeup range review 2017

Blush & Glow Palette

I was excited by this product because I'm always on the lookout for my perfect blush and bronzer shades. I don't hate what I currently use, but it's easy to be really heavy-handed with them. These powders were quite different. In fact, when I was putting them on I couldn't tell where they were going in my poorly lit bedroom. I was using the brush Dirty Works sent me for the job and I realised that it wasn't really picking up a lot of product (more to come on this). I switched to my regular cheek brush and got along much better. I still couldn't really see what I'd done though.

But then I took these photos and I can clearly see the bronzer and blush! And I really rather like them; it looks like a healthy, rosy glow rather than like I've painted my cheeks (which is how I feel I usually look with my normal blusher on). I did put the highlighter on too - I think you can actually see evidence of it in the first photo as it's reflecting light off my cheek, but I couldn't see it much in the flesh again.

Re-purchase? I'm still using the lovely blush shade daily, but find I prefer my Nars bronzer for the colour. The highlighter I really can't see very much on my pale skin, but might work better on someone darker than me.

Lip Service Luxe Lip Crayons (set of three)

I read these were glossy and have to say, wasn't hopping with enthusiasm. I am really just not a glossy lip girl - I hate the feel of it and I mostly hate the look. I don't really like shiny things anywhere near my face to be honest. So, it was with some trepidation I tried the red crayon. Top marks for colour - I was expecting it to be a little weak, but it was punchy and applied smoothly and easily. I overdraw my lips a little to correct a wonky bow and a lot of crayons can't handle this and it looks really fake - this one managed just fine with this challenge! It is a little glossy, but it's not sticky and it's little enough I didn't really mind it. It does transfer though, as you'd expect. It also has a bit of a plasticky smell which thankfully didn't hang around for too long.

Re-purchase? I like the red and the sort of mauvey pink in the set, but the light pink is too light for me. The two other colours, I find myself picking up on days I want a more toned-down look - the pink one I'm wearing pretty much daily for work. Admittedly I have so many lip products it takes something very special to require me to repurchase it!

The eyeshadow brush and blusher brush
£4 - https://dirtyworksbeauty.com/product/dirty-works-eyeshadow-brush/ & £6 https://dirtyworksbeauty.com/product/dirty-works-blusher-brush/

I'm always up for trying new brushes, particularly eyeshadow and cheek brushes. I'm quite fussy about my shadow brushes and I wasn't expecting to like this one, but actually, it did a great job of picking the shadow up for my base layer. I don't use flat-head brushes like this one for crease-work, but I do like it for depositing a lot of powder over my lid. The blusher brush, though, was a bit of a fail. It felt amazing on my skin, it was so soft, but it turns out it wasn't as great at putting product on my face as it was stroking it. Hence why I did resort to my normal brush in the end. I think the bristles were just too soft - I actually think it would be quite a good blender potentially, but I tend to get by with the one brush for everything because I'm pretty darn lazy.

Re-purchase? Yes to the eyeshadow brush, but the blusher brush wasn't for me.

Dirty Works makeup range review 2017

All-in-all, for a very cheap makeup range, there's some good eggs in here! I'm not sure what my favourite is, but the brushes are fantastic and I do very much like the blusher and eyeshadow palette. If you see the range in your local Sainsbury's I suggest you check it out.

*Note, I'm wearing my usual foundation/concealer/powder base, mascara and false eyelashes in these photos, but everything else is as per the products mentioned!



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Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Outfit: jumpsuit for joy

I can hardly believe this day has come... never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I'd own a jumpsuit! Not least one with palazzo pants style bottom! Off-the-peg jumpsuits aren't really the domain of the petite. There's just not a lot of fun in buying something knowing that you have to alter the body, legs, maybe sleeves... To be quite frank I never thought I'd own palazzo pants either. So how am I here wearing both? Courtesy of the custom-made wonder of eShakti!

Not only can you perfectly tailor something to your height and bodyshape, you can also alter the design. Which is exactly what I did here. The original jumpsuit has full-length sleeves and ankle-length trousers. But when I saw it, I immediately started thinking how vintage inspired this would look if the legs were longer and the sleeves were different. So, I ticked the box that said the legs would be full-length with 3" heels and the elbow-length sleeve box. After plugging in various measurements, like my height, some body measurements and a vaguer one about my arms being 'short', off my order went.

And when it turned up it was love at first sight! I admit, I thought I was really putting the custom-made thing through its paces with a petite jumpsuit where I'd made big alterations to the design. I didn't even enter my leg measurement, so I had no idea how they were going to work out my leg length from my height. But somehow, they did! It's a perfect fit. It's also one of the most comfortable things I've ever owned. It's made of a soft, stretchy jersey-type fabric and it was both warm and able to hold its own against a big Sunday roast.

I am so thrilled to own my first and only jumpsuit and it's all thanks to the beauty of custom-made clothing and eShakti's brilliant service! While this is a review sample, the service really is very affordable for a tailor-made option. I just wish I had a reason to own 10 jumpsuits...

By the way, the lighting in these photos isn't perfect, the fabric is definitely all one colour!

eShakti custom made vintage style jumpsuit review

eShakti custom made vintage style jumpsuit review

eShakti custom made vintage style jumpsuit review

eShakti custom made vintage style jumpsuit review

eShakti custom made vintage style jumpsuit review

eShakti custom made vintage style jumpsuit review

eShakti custom made vintage style jumpsuit review

eShakti custom made vintage style jumpsuit review

eShakti custom made vintage style jumpsuit review
Headscarf: Next (old)
Jumpsuit & belt: c/o eShakti
Bangle: gift
Bag: c/o Sourpuss (similar)
Shoes: Miss L Fire (last year's)


Have big legs on trousers, will do stupid poses...



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Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Outfit: keeping cosy

Beyond my beautiful swing coats, a lot of my shorter, more everyday coats are pretty worn in by this point. The problem is that I wear the shorter coats a lot more and they do wear out but I find it so hard to find coats I like and that I fit, being as petite as I am, that I just live with it until they actually disintegrate.

Step in, Hell Bunny. The Olga style I bring to you today is a re-release of a classic one, so I'm a bit annoyed I didn't try it before because I could have thrown out that navy ASOS coat that has about 2/8 buttons left a long time ago! Navy is possibly my favourite coat colour - it's dark enough that it doesn't get too mucky looking, but it's crucially not black, which just makes this pale face look zombie-esque in winter. Brown I find can sometimes clash with my hair (I don't understand it either, but some browns with my brown hair look really weird) and I love dark green, but it's not quite as easy to match with things as good ol' navy. But if navy isn't your thing, this coat comes in black and burgundy too.

It's a really good, classic, staple kind of coat. It's great for someone my height, because it retains that vintage aesthetic while being really easy to wear in flats as well as heels, hitting just about on the knee as it does. Normally I don't like coats to be shorter than my skirts, but I tried it here and I think it's working! I love the double collar design and the waist belt - I always look for waist belts because with the bulk of winter knitwear sometimes it's the only thing that doesn't make me look like an overstuffed teddy bear. The pocket flaps are a nice touch too - whenever I do use my coat pockets I'm usually putting something vital like my keys or phone in there and then jogging across the road at traffic lights, so one of these days...

I found the fit typical of Hell Bunny's usual and took XS as normal in this coat. I did have to have the sleeves shortened - but this is the girl that has to have petite length sleeves shortened so I think I have tiny T-Rex arms or something.

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review

Hell Bunny Olga coat in navy review
Beret: eBay
Scarf: Boohoo (last year)
Coat: c/o Hell Bunny 
(navy / black/ burgundy  - CICIM20!% for 20% off)
Skirt: c/o SheIn (last year)
Tights: Primark (last year)
Shoes: Lulu Hun (last year)
Bag: c/o Hell Bunny (CICIM20!% for 20% off)


PS I seem to have lost the ability to comment on Blogger blogs - I'm not sure what's going on with my profile but it's really not working anymore. The internet doesn't seem to know what to do so do tell me if any of you have had this problem and what you did to resolve it?? Unless, of course, you can't comment either because I'M on Blogger... lolz. Although not for much longer - I'm making the Wordpress switch to a whole new blog very soon (thank goodness)!


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Sunday, 12 November 2017

Outfit: sweet swing jacket

Ah, those heady days when I didn't have a grotesquely/comedically swollen face and a whole tonne of pain thanks to my wisdom tooth extraction... They feel like a long time ago, that's for sure! Thankfully, I had the foresight to snap this beautiful jacket before all this happened...

This is my very first swing jacket and I think, to be honest with you, I've been a bit spoilt. This coat from The House of Foxy is beautiful - from colour to cut how can you not love it? The other great thing is that for me, being so petite I struggle to find authentic vintage style outwear that fits. From too long arms to too long hems, there's often something that's off and needs correcting. Coats are expensive in the first place, it's quite hard to justify that kind of added cost.

Admittedly, I'm sure these sleeves are meant to be closer to the elbow than they are on me and perhaps the length should be shorter, but it still works just as well and that's what matters. The colour is gorgeous and the material is a lot warmer than I thought it would be. It's become my go-to grab-and-go jacket. I love that it can be worn undone or done up, so I've shown you both ways here. Special mention for the button, by the way, as it's a reproduction of a 50s original.

It was also a great excuse to finally buy those elbow length faux leather gloves by Collectif that I've had my eye on since they came out for the first time last year. They'll also look great with my pink cape, hurrah!

The House of Foxy 50s cute red swing jacket review

The House of Foxy 50s cute red swing jacket review

Collectif elbow length faux leather gloves

The House of Foxy 50s cute red swing jacket review

The House of Foxy 50s cute red swing jacket review

The House of Foxy 50s cute red swing jacket review

The House of Foxy 50s cute red swing jacket review

The House of Foxy 50s cute red swing jacket review

The House of Foxy 50s cute red swing jacket review

The House of Foxy 50s cute red swing jacket review

The House of Foxy 50s cute red swing jacket review
Beret: Primark (old)
Gloves: Collectif
Dress: Sugarhill Boutique (old)
Bag: Tippi c/o Hell Bunny (20% off with cicim20!%)


Unfortunately, not very much is going well for me this week. Worst of all, we probably now don't have a puppy after all - as we found out last night that one of the litter is too ill to take on (she needs an expensive operation and round the clock care until that happens at 6 months), and we were last in line. We'll find out today if the people before us change their minds, but it looks like no puppy at Christmas for us :( The breed we've chosen is one of the most popular and yet there just aren't that many breeders within driving distance of us and every waiting list is over subscribed. (Before anyone suggests we should adopt - we have very carefully considered this and we definitely want to do it when we can, but it's not right for us at the moment.) Between this and the constant pain I'm in with my mouth right now, this month has not started well...



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