Original Christmas Gift Ideas

 

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Christmas is only a few sleeps away and everyone across the world will be gearing up to celebrate, however if you’ve yet to find the perfect presents for the people you love, the season will likely not be filled with all that much cheer. If you’re struggling to find gifts for your friends and family that are a little more original that the general crop however, you’ll likely be biting your nails, cursing Santa’s name! Don’t fret though; we’ve got some excellent, delightfully original Christmas present ideas for you right here!

Curry Subscription

Do any of your loved ones relish the opportunity to head down to the local Indian restaurant for an injection of spice and flavour? If they are you should think about getting them a three month Friday Night Curry Subscription! Each month the lovely people behind the subscription will send you over a box of fine, fresh spices and recipes; all you need are the vegetables and meat! Depending on how adventurous your giftee is you can pick from either favourites boxes (traditional curries) or discover boxes (unusual, South East Asian curries), making this a great gift for any foodie!

A New Bed

A highly original gift, getting your beloved a new bed frame or mattress could be just what Santa ordered. After all, what’s better than the gift of comfort and a good night’s sleep! The trick here is to get your bed-based gifts from online retailers like this one; sites like Bedstar offer a huge number of sale items, many of which are very modern and stylish, befitting of any taste or budget.

Plant Theatre Cocktail Garden

Who doesn’t enjoy a nice cocktail now and again? Fresh fruity flavours, delectable liquors and a healthy dose of refreshment; unfortunately however, though we all would love to be able to make our own cocktails at home, experiencing a little mixology in our lives, we often lack the basic ingredients to do so. The Plant Theatre Cocktail Garden fixes this, providing the owner with six varieties of seeds, pots, peat, a sowing and growing guide and a guide on how to make delicious flavoured syrups with your cocktail-friendly plants.

Laser Projection Keyboard

We’re not sure if any of our favourite Sci-Fi movies feature anything like this amazing gadget, but even if it doesn’t, the Laser Projection Keyboard
certainly seems like it’s arrived from the future! Connecting via Bluetooth to your computer, the projector turns any surface into a workspace or keyboard whilst looking really cool in the process.

This Season’s Biggest Colors and How to Wear Them

From season to season, different colors are favored by the fashion world. Nobody is really sure why; one big designer uses a color, and everybody else seems to follow. This post is going to fill you in on all of this season’s biggest colors, so you can get in on the trend. However, we’re not just talking about your clothes. We’re talking about your hair and makeup too! Let’s get started…

On Your Clothes

Black

Black has always been pretty big, as it’s just so versatile. People are even covering themselves head to toe in black, calling it ‘all black everything’. It looks mysterious and expensive. You can’t beat it this season! To make it more interesting, wear multiple textures.

Neutral

Neutral colors are very ‘Scandi’ style, and keep winter outfits looking clean cut and fresh. It works especially well with more ‘masculine’ silhouettes and a slicked back ponytail with simple makeup. This is all about keeping it simple.

Orange

If you’ve got your Netflix subscription, you’ll already know that orange is the new black. When it comes to clothes though, people really are starting to favor it over the mysterious color I mentioned before. Orange can brighten up these dull days in an instant.

On Your Hair

Fiery Red

Fiery red hair is going to be everywhere this season. Forget your boring browns and your pretty blondes. If you want something unique, then you must go for a strong, fiery red. Think of Ariel the mermaid princess when you’re selecting your shade!

Dark Blonde

Dark blonde is dirty, just the way we like it! It looks natural, and suits just about any style or skin tone. You really can’t go wrong this year with a dark blonde shade.

Silver Blonde

If you’re not going red or dark, then it must be silver. Think of it as an almost grey shade. People always talk about going dark for winter and light for summer, but this year it’s the opposite way round. Why would you want to go dark and blend in when you could go silver and stand out?

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On Your Makeup

Gold Metallic Eyes

Metallic eyes are perfect for this party season. The best thing to do is keep the rest of your makeup simple with a nude lip or gloss to set off your eyes.

Silver Glitter Eyes

Buy a pot of glitter and some fixing gel and you can make your eyes sparkle like never before. Dab on as much or as little as you want to make a big impact this season.

Purple Lips

Don’t be scared of trying purple lips. They’re pretty but shocking at the same time. If you’re feeling vampy, this is the perfect shade to go for.

Dark Red Lips

Of course we couldn’t miss out a nice dark red lip this season, could we? Again, this fits in with the vampy lip trend perfectly.

Wear the colors mentioned here in this way and you’ll look fierce all season long. Have fun!This Season’s Biggest Colors and How to Wear ThemThis Season’s Biggest Colors and How to Wear Them

Stylish Engagement Rings For Fashion Fanatics

Those of us with a passion with fashion, understand just how important it is to keep up to date with the latest styles and trends from around the world. Autumn styles and winter trends have been so varied this year, and it is no longer just about dull and dreary clothing to see you through winter. If you are thinking about proposing to your girlfriend this month then keep in mind a few simple tips below that should help you surprise any fashion fan.

There are so many successful jewellery designers out there now. It is important to find out whether your girlfriend goes for big designer brands or small independent designers. Does she want the option to design her own ring or would she be happy with something from a respected jewellery store? If money is no object, maybe you could even design the engagement ring for her? You would need to be very aware of her likes and dislikes to take on this challenge though!image

Those of us with a passion with fashion, understand just how important it is to keep up to date with the latest styles and trends from around the world. Autumn styles and winter trends have been so varied this year, and it is no longer just about dull and dreary clothing to see you through winter. If you are thinking about proposing to your girlfriend this month then keep in mind a few simple tips below that should help you surprise any fashion fan.

There are so many successful jewellery designers out there now. It is important to find out whether your girlfriend goes for big designer brands or small independent designers. Does she want the option to design her own ring or would she be happy with something from a respected jewellery store? If money is no object, maybe you could even design the engagement ring for her? You would need to be very aware of her likes and dislikes to take on this challenge though!

The size, shape and cut of the diamond ring that you choose is important. Make sure that you google your diamond choices first or ask your jeweller to help you. For more info on diamonds in Houston, click here.

Some of the fashion greats like Chanel, Dior and Tiffany & Co have stunning designs that any fashion lover would fall in love with. The only problem is, most of us can’t afford the price tag that comes with a true designer piece. If money is no option then, you could be looking at hundreds of thousands to bag that dream ring. For the majority of us it is easy to pick a ring that is similar to the designer trends that we love at a fraction of the cost. Vintage rings are also a really great option as they tend to possess a timelessly classic look.

Saving to buy a designer themed purchase is still an expensive task. There are plenty of money saving tips that can help you to quickly build up your funds, without getting yourself into debt before your big day. If you stick to a budget, you’ll find that saving for the perfect ring is surprisingly easy and affordable. Try your local antique stores and only visit jewellers that you trust to ensure that you are getting great value for money.

Fashionable rings don’t always have to be completely outlandish or ‘in your face’ expensive. It is a common misconception that just because we might follow fashion trends, we must be picky or difficult when it comes to finding the perfect choice. As long as you take note of what your girlfriend likes you will be fine. If you need a little bit more inspiration, you could always try to find out some of her favorite influential fashion bloggers to get more of an idea of the style she likes. If you have a stunning ring to present and keep the proposal itself stylish and sophisticated, your engagement day will be one to remember forever.

The size, shape and cut of the diamond ring that you choose is important. Make sure that you google your diamond choices first or ask your jeweller to help you. For more info on diamonds in Houston, click here.

Some of the fashion greats like Chanel, Dior and Tiffany & Co have stunning designs that any fashion lover would fall in love with. The only problem is, most of us can’t afford the price tag that comes with a true designer piece. If money is no option then, you could be looking at hundreds of thousands to bag that dream ring. For the majority of us it is easy to pick a ring that is similar to the designer trends that we love at a fraction of the cost. Vintage rings are also a really great option as they tend to possess a timelessly classic look.

Saving to buy a designer themed purchase is still an expensive task. There are plenty of money saving tips that can help you to quickly build up your funds, without getting yourself into debt before your big day. If you stick to a budget, you’ll find that saving for the perfect ring is surprisingly easy and affordable. Try your local antique stores and only visit jewellers that you trust to ensure that you are getting great value for money.

Fashionable rings don’t always have to be completely outlandish or ‘in your face’ expensive. It is a common misconception that just because we might follow fashion trends, we must be picky or difficult when it comes to finding the perfect choice. As long as you take note of what your girlfriend likes you will be fine. If you need a little bit more inspiration, you could always try to find out some of her favorite influential fashion bloggers to get more of an idea of the style she likes. If you have a stunning ring to present and keep the proposal itself stylish and sophisticated, your engagement day will be one to remember forever.

In the Esprit of things

I’ve just returned from a few days in Munich – enjoying the Christmas markets, sausages and Feuerzangenbowle! I also had a poke around some of the clothes shops. One shop I loved when I was last in Germany (12 years ago!!), was Esprit. It wasn’t one we had over in the UK – and I still haven’t seen any physical stores but I was pleasantly surprised to find that they now have Esprit online for the UK market.

Unfortunately, Esprit only goes up to a size 20 and doesn’t have a plus range. But for those of you a size 20 or smaller, definitely check them out! It also does men, children’s and home ware.

Here are a couple of my favourite items:

 

Alpaca

alpaca cardigan

 

jeans

Slim jeans (but also love the whole outfit!

trainers

Fleece lined trainers

grey coat

grey wool coat

There are some wonderful pieces – its just a shame they don’t go big enough to fit me. Have any of you ordered anything from Esprit?

 

Things to be thankful for

2014 has not been kind to me. For those of you who follow me on Twitter you will have seen I’ve recently been diagnosed with uterine cancer and I’m having to have a full hysterectomy and oophorectomy two weeks today. To say I am devastated is an understatement; I cannot believe that this is how it’s turning out for me. It’s something I have to try and come to turns with over the next few months.

I’ve also had to put my career on hold – which is just as devastating. I love my job and I am passionate about my next step up. I had the opportunity to go for a promotion this month but with my operation looming and my head being full of stress and worry, I’m not in the right place. And for the first time ever, I’m taking my foot off the pedal – which is so hard.

So I don’t have much I feel very thankful for. But given that today is Thanksgiving and this American holiday is fast becoming popular in the UK, I decided to write about three things I am thankful for. Warning: this may be unusually soppy!

  1. I am thankful for having such a wonderful husband who is not only my best friend but has also been my rock throughout the last few months. I’m also grateful that he continues to treat me the same and that during a time which will test any couple, we still fight about my frequent ehem donations to ASOS and most of the time our relationship remains the same as it always has been. Loving and argumentative!

 

  1. The last few months have proven to me beyond a doubt that I have some truly great friends. They’ve picked me up, dusted me off and kept me sane throughout every horrible turn and twist. I can rely on them entirely – whatever the day or time – and they are there for me. It’s also been wonderful for them to tell me that as well. I’ve been surprised at how far a good friend will go for you. Whether it’s getting up at the crack of dawn to accompany you to hospital, be your care in the community worker or to be an ear to listen when you are scared and sad or even just to keep things feeling like normal and talking about anything but my illness.

 

  1. Lastly, I feel so thankful for my own inner strength. I’m proud of myself for still standing despite everything that’s being thrown at me – and believe me the shit hasn’t stopped with cancer diagnoses. It seems that things will continue to kick me when I’m down. I am glad I can put things into perspective and that I have been strong enough to make rational decisions about horrendous things.

 

So there you go. It felt very therapeutic!

A Guide to Feeling Confident in Your Clothes

Feeling confident in your clothes is the key to looking absolutely incredible. It doesn’t matter how nice your outfit is; if you don’t feel right in it, you won’t look as good. It’s simple! So how can you make sure you feel confident?

FeelConfident

Follow this advice:

 

Make Sure You’re Comfortable

 

The first thing you need to do is make sure you feel comfortable in your outfits. This isn’t just in the physical sense of the word, but in the mental sense too. If you feel like you want to keep covering up your tummy by folding your arms or pulling down your skirt, it won’t give off a comfortable or confident impression. You need to feel totally comfortable in what you’re wearing in order to feel confident. Bear in mind this doesn’t mean you can wear baggy trousers and a top 4 times too big for you.

 

Get Colourful

 

Colour is a great way to channel confidence. The colour red is said to be the most confident looking colour, but you don’t need to stick to red. Wear any colours you like! Neutrals are nice sometimes, but you shouldn’t stick to the same colours constantly. It’s boring! Wear your favourite colours. If you’re scared, try wearing something in a bright colour in winter and toning it down with neutrals. It’ll be much less scary. Come summer, you’ll be ready to dress head to toe in colour!

 

Make Sure Your Clothes Fit Well

 

Your clothes should fit you. There are the odd exceptions; for example, when you’re wearing a baggy top for fashion and layering purposes. However, wearing clothes to cover yourself up rather than for fashion purposes is completely out of the question. Your clothes need to fit you!

 

Play Up Your Favourite Areas

 

What are your favourite areas? Perhaps you have a pair of legs to die for. Show them off! Wear a looser jumper with some tight fitting jeans, or in summer, make sure you have plenty of pairs of shorts. If you show off your favourite areas, you’ll always look and feel confident. Just make sure you don’t flash too much flesh at one time.

 

Use Body Type as a Guideline

 

You can always use body type as a guideline if you’re stuck on what suits you. Bear in mind you don’t have to stick to these if you don’t want to. Gok Wan is great at dressing ladies in what suits them best. Try it and see what you think, you might pick up some useful tips.

 

Fake it Till You Make it!

 

If you struggle with confidence anyway, the best tip I can give you is ‘fake it till you make it’. Pretend you have oodles of confidence, and eventually it will begin to show. Your brain will start to believe that you really are confident from all of that pretending! Clever, huh?

 

If you want to look great at all times, confidence is key. Use these tips and you might just start to feel differently about yourself and your style!

 

Photo Author: Flickr