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2014 // BEST GIGS OF THE YEAR

This year has been an AMAZING year in music in my opinion.

I've seen some amazing tours, there's been the best newcomers in music for a long time and my old favourites have released top albums. I don't do enough music posts to say it's been such a huge part of 2014, so I might make that a blogging resolution for next year!

I've put together a few of the best moments of music for me in 2014.




Katy Perry Prismatic World Tour @ Manchester Phones 4 U arena

I have waited a very long time to see Katy Perry in action and it was the most spectacular show I've ever been to. She got a lot of bad rep for performing live on TV last year but in actuality, her voice was stunning. How a woman can sound so great whilst running up and down a treadmill between swinging cats and oversized emojicons I have no idea.

Definitely the most fun I've had at an arena concert since Steps circa 2001.


Arctic Monkeys - Finsbury Park

These are an old favourite and having seen them a couple of times before I knew I'd enjoy it. I love gigs that have support acts that you enjoy just as much as the headliner and Royal Blood and Miles Kane support was awesome.

The ONLY issue I had with this? No Mardy Bum. But as the #0114 girls representing Yorkshire, we serenaded the crowd whilst shuffling out of the park for a good twenty minutes after Alex left the stage.

source: NME

The Kooks - John Peel Stage @ Glastonbury

Whilst myself and my friends from Oxfam were working hard (sat recovering from the previous night's antics) at the entrance, it was released on Twitter that The Kooks were playing a secret gig. After our shift we downed a can of cider (thank you to the man who gave us the rest of his crate on his way out of the festival!) legged it to John Peel and had the BEST time.

They played the classics and the new stuff as we danced around our bag mountain. I can honestly say I've never had a better gig experience whilst being at the very back of a tent - plenty of boogie room.


Dolly Parton - Pyramid Stage @ Glastonbury

I cried.
Yes, I did have a box of wine previous to her performance which could have contributed to this BUT honestly, it was emotional all round. It was amazing to see such a legend of music sing all her originals and who knew she could play so many instruments?!

Highlights were 'Jolene' (thumbs up to the Theatre & Circus Glasto team who promoted the dance and the security guards who joined in) and 'Blue Smoke'. Totally bought her new album afterwards and I am not ashamed.


Frank Turner & The Sleeping Souls - Unity Works, Wakefield

This was the first time I'd seen Frank Turner at his own gig rather than amidst a festival and it was bloody brilliant. I'm gonna be honest, I've not gone through his entire back catalogue and learnt every word like a lot of people around me had but I'm still a pretty big fan. Not necessarily just of his music but of his attitude to life and fame in general.

Also meeting the band afterwards was pretty cool. They're all down to earth guys and thanks to Tarrant for coming over and chatting and thanks to the random girl who thought we were dating. I was flattered.



Jamie T - Alexandra Palace, London

This was spectacular both because it was the biggest comeback of the year and the venue is just brilliant. He played all the crowd favourites and showed off the best of his new album 'Carry on The Grudge' and it was spot on. See my full gig review here.



What were your favourite gigs of 2014?

In 2015, I've already got a few gigs lined up I think are gonna be amazing including King Charles, Catfish and the Bottlemen and Hozier, as well as another wonderful week at Glastonbury! Hope you've enjoyed my round-up of this year, give me a shout if you have any gigs you think I'd love!



GIG REVIEW // JAMIE T @ ALLY PALLY

The food hall at Alexandra Palace with lights on the ceiling

Jamie T at Alexandra Palace - 14/11/2014

This year has been chock full of amazing gigs but we've been waiting a while for this one in particular. Jamie T at Alexandra Palace held a lot of excitement because:

1. His new album is fantastic
2. None of us had ever been to Ally Pally before
and 3. It was an excuse for a festive London trip with some of my music loving mates!

As we were travelling from Watford Junction, we took a number of tubes to end up in Wood Green. From there, we jumped on board the Ally Pally coach (just on the opposite side of the road to the station) and surprisingly, it was only a quid for the journey!

We arrived, skipped the uber-fan queue to go straight to the bar - obviously. In the Bar & Kitchen it was pretty reasonably priced to say we were in London and at a venue in the middle of nowhere. We all ordered food (halloumi kebabs for me, absolute winner) and had a few drinks before the chaos began.

Inside, the Palace had set up food stalls galore and it was such a festival feel we got into the gig spirit pretty quickly, if the copious amounts of cider hadn't already. The place is stunning and holds up to 10,400 people, and of course, Jamie T had well and truly sold out.




Opening with Limit Lies and Don't You Find, he introduced his album to the fans live, in the biggest headline gig of his career.

It was lairy, to put it simply. It's been a while since I've been in a 'crowd-crushing' and 'struggling to find air instead of other people's sweaty fumes' sort of situation, but by the end, I felt right at home. 

There were moshpits galore but not in a 'Bring Me The Horizon; Oli Sykes is a dickhead' sort of way. The crowd was mainly male and there was a clear Jamie T inspired sense of style - laddish.
Every one of the parka coat/umbro jacket squad however, provided a great atmosphere and quite frankly, it was one of the best crowds I've ever been a part of.

Jamie had not played the same setlist throughout the entire tour which made us a little bit nervous he might miss out a few old favourites (e.g. he didn't play Sheila in Bristol - soz you missed out guys!)
However he went on and played all the ones I personally love, Turn On The Light, 368 and If You Got the Money. 

He finished with what I'd say was the best encore I've ever experienced, with his most famous three singles - Sheila, Zombie and Sticks 'n' Stones.

A radio DJ earlier in the week asked 'Is Jamie T the biggest comeback of the year?'
My answer is yes, he most definitely is.


leanne

x


BOOK REVIEW // ENDGAME

Endgame
by James Frey & Nils Johnson-Shelton


'Twelve ancient cultures were chosen millennia ago to represent humanity in Endgame, a global game that will decide the fate of humankind. Endgame has always been a possibility, but never a reality…until now. Twelve meteorites have just struck Earth, each meteorite containing a message for a Player who has been trained for this moment. At stake for the Players: saving their bloodline, as well as the fate of the world. And only one can win.

Endgame is real. Endgame is now.'



After reading the blurb I knew I wanted to read 'Endgame' and was kindly sent a copy before release. The whole dystopian genre has come under a huge spotlight since 'The Hunger Games' and this sounded very similar to others I've read such as 'The Maze Runner' (review here).

I wasn't sold on the story at first - it seemed like another book in which kids kill each other to survive blah blah. It did get me hooked when I was half way through the book however. Unlike 'The Hunger Games', there's more focus on all of the 12 players rather than a sole protagonist. I wanted to know what happened to my favourite characters by the end because you find out an equal amount of each (dependant on how long they're alive for, obviously).

The characters and detail into their lives before and during playing Endgame was the best point for me, it means you really get to grips with them as people and I find it's more enjoyable when you care about what happens to each one.

One of the most irritating things about the book is An Liu, a player with a stammer. Each of his chapters have an extraordinary amount of *blinkblinkblink-ing* in them which after introducing him as a character with this issue and a first *blink* they should have just given the audience the credit to remember that he would be disadvantaged because of this.

It was pretty action packed but not my cup of tea, I didn't find it exciting enough.

However, the interesting thing about this book is how it is also an interactive REAL LIFE game involving puzzles, YouTube videos, e-books and more. Basically, there's a $500,000 prize if a reader can figure out the clues, reflecting a similar plot to that of the actual story (without murder and death I hope) and unlock the gold in Las Vegas. It's all pretty exciting BUT this isn't portrayed enough at all. I received the book, read the book, saw the puzzles and yet still had to Google for about half an hour to find out if this was actually a real thing. Apparently it is, see the live stream here.

What did you think of Endgame, or would you want to read it?

If so, it's available here - Endgame on Amazon




'TIS THE SEASON IN LONDON //


Large red bauble decorations at Covent Garden

'Tis the Season to be jolly...

...in London, apparently!

I visited London last weekend for a gig (review to come later...) followed by Christmas window shopping, sightseeing and a wild night out in Watford! It was such a lovely experience, not only because I had a great time with a good bunch of people but because visiting London at this time of year is guaranteed to make even Scrooge himself feel a bit of festive spirit.

It was absolutely beautiful, which of course my amateur Nokia phone photo skills won't portray, but I went a bit snap happy regardless and I hope you enjoy reading about my time in the capital.

We started our 'Day of Fun and Christmas' at Harrods. Obviously. Where else?!
After flitting quickly through the jewellery department and trying to find an escalator, we eventually followed the jolly Christmas music and ended up in the Christmas at Home section - and it didn't disappoint. 

Christmas Tree ornaments

Christmas Tree ornaments
Look at all the beautiful tree ornaments!

As a designer (sometimes environmental) I was captured by the clever advent calendar style wall displays Harrods used in each area. They all had specific themes and accompanying themed trees!
Delicate, elegant, floral and pretty pretty pretty theme.
Much more up my street - quirky, wood and bright colours!

It would be a crime not to visit the food hall in here, so after deciding a £9 hot chocolate was a bit out of our price range at the chocolate cafe (it looked heavenly, though!) we headed straight for the cakes. The Christmas theme didn't just stop at homeware...

See what I chose on Instagram...
BAUBLE CUPCAKES!

After this, we headed through London with digital and polaroid cameras to hand for the full tourist experience. Our friend Kim kindly gave us the ultimate, unique guide to London as she walked us through various scenes from different TV shows she watches...

From Millenium Bridge, where the Cybermen walked across in the last episode of Dr Who, apparently.

From there we went to the Tower Bridge to see the amazing poppy displays that were placed for Remembrance Sunday a few weeks ago. The volunteers were steadily taking them all down but the majority of the display was still there and it was spectacular. All 888,246 poppies (one for every fatality in WW1) have been sold to raise money for six charities relating to the Armed Forces and Servicemen.



FROM BOOK TO FILM // #2 THE MAZE RUNNER

This is a blog series in which I look at books that have recently been produced as films. I love adaptations of plots but sometimes, it can go terribly wrong in the process (look at The Fault in our Stars, for example. Controversial? We can discuss this another time friends...)


The Maze Runner by James Dashner
Screenplay by various, Film directed by Wes Ball

from book...

I picked up The Maze Runner series because it specifically sold itself as 'for fans of The Hunger Games'. I love the dystopian future theme that has been taking over the cinemas lately and The Maze Runner is a great contender. I loved the first book and the overall idea, albeit VERY similar to THG but hey, they did tell me that in the first place...

All male characters (initially) and a random, deserted place they've all landed in; I actually found the start of the book pretty slow. However, I appreciated the time spent describing individual characters although there are a lot of nicknames to remember.

The whole storyline is pretty action packed after the introductions and it was a page turner from there onwards. The Glade seems genuinely horrific and the 'grievers' (awful, slimy, machine creatures...) can be imagined as pretty terrifying.

You get pretty attached to certain characters which isn't surprising as they're pretty detailed and their individual relationships with Thomas shows a lot about the personality each one. I think this works really well but didn't expect the same to come across in the film, due to having to compress it, basically.

...to film

So I still like the character of Thomas as I did in the book, played by Dylan O'Brien (who at first glance, I actually thought was the same guy who played Percy Jackson. It isn't. Just thought I'd let you know.) Not a lot of detail about certain characters. Gally is less likeable from the get go in the book and Alby isn't as 'fatherly'.

The Glade isn't half as scary as the book makes out. They're actually all having a pretty great time with no families, normality and in the middle of a field. It's all a bit Glastonbury.

The grievers are fantastic, couldn't have imagined them better.

The only female character makes a very quick entry into the film and is useless, and in the book she doesn't really play much of a part until the end but is still pretty useless. I actually think Teresa is a seriously poor character. Kaya is stunning but that's all I can say about that.

As far as 'book to film' standards go, it's pretty damn poor.
HOWEVER, I thought it was a good film. The effects were great and the highlight is pretty unsurprisingly, the action and adventure inside the maze, particularly Minho and Thomas' second time in the maze together.

I'm going to be honest, I think the book series goes downhill from here so I can only imagine that will be the same for the films and next up in 2015 - Maze Runner: Scorch Trials...




BONFIRE NIGHT //


Remember, remember the 5th of November...
because it's also my half birthday!

Yes I know I sound like a spoiled child but I don't actually celebrate it, however, my mum is to blame for me always having to have someone at least acknowledge it. Almost every year when I was little and bonfire night came around, she reminded me it was halfway between my birthdays and that just stuck with me.

So imagine my surprise when this year, my boyfriend drove up to see me for the night, so we could go out and see the fireworks! He even brought everything we could possibly need for a night in the cold!


 We started the night with some hearty, British ready meals then set off armed with
hot chocolate and brandy in our flasks, reminiscent of our Scarborough beach bonfire tradition.
He even brought me the cutest owl glove/mittens (Primark) because he knew I didn't have any!

We went to a park a short bus ride away from where I live, which was new to both of us.
David's face was pure brilliance when he saw the size of the bonfire in comparison to what he's used to, being a country bumpkin from the midlands.

In his words, 'Northerner's know how to do a bonfire'. Damn reet, we do.
We watched the fireworks which were amazing and it was a lovely, lovely night and a great surprise and thanks David, for helping me complete a November Resolution :)

Hope you all had a wonderful night!








FROM BOOK TO FILM // #1 GONE GIRL

Fantastic books that are produced as films are my ultimate marmite.
The films are either equally as brilliant as the literary version or terrible due to the fact a film cannot encompass the amount of detail described in a book, in my opinion.

I thought it would make a nice first series for The Dress Diaries because I've always got a book in my hand and I'd love to share my thoughts on recent cinema too. This month has inspired me to begin the series because the quality of films has been immense and ALL the films I've seen have originally been a favourite book of mine at some point.



Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (screenplay/book)
Film directed by David Fincher


from book...

This is the last book I've read that I could not put down. It's absolutely gripping and will keep you guessing from the second you start reading until the very last page. I read this whilst on holiday earlier this year because I wanted to read it before the film was released in October. I'd also heard SO many great things about it that it seemed impossible to ignore.

I'm not usually one for a thriller but there is so much more to this plot than just a sinister twist or two. If I'm honest, sometimes the book made me feel really uncomfortable because it was so real but with that I find it means the author has done a perfect job. The characters are relatable at times then seem completely different people on the next page, which I guess highlights human feelings and more importantly, the ups and downs of a relationship between two people.

I think it's tremendously well written and any plot that has so many well thought out twists in it is a winner in my book (ha, see what I did there). I have since insisted that every other book lover in my life get it so we can discuss!



...to film

My mum was the first person I forced into buying this on her Kindle and her reaction was exactly the same. She found it difficult to put down and then insisted we see the film as soon as it was released.

I was wary after seeing the trailer (here) that it might not live up to my expectations, as I've found with so many book-to-film productions. The cast looked great though and who can say no to a bit of serious Ben Affleck?

*sort-of-spoiler*
It was rated an 18 which I wasn't overly surprised at. The language is pretty heavy I guess but what I didn't expect was the most gory, twisted sex scene I've ever seen in a film that isn't classified as a 'horror'. It was shot really well, very uncomfortable to watch (clearly a theme that transferred between mediums!) and was the sort that people gasped audibly at. I rarely like to admit this because I am a lover of books but this scene was much better in the film!
*end-of-sort-of-spoiler*

Overall, the story pretty much matched the original which is the way I love it. Even though I don't particularly like the ending of the novel, I'm not one to encourage changing originality into a something completely different just so film fans enjoy it more. There were a few characters lacking that I felt were fairly important viewpoints in the book so it was a shame they were cut BUT I understand it isn't possible to include everything.


I really enjoyed it, frankly and to be honest, reading the book after the film is probably recommended!


HALLOWEEN COSTUME // DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE

Mad Hatter and Alice make a cute, albeit weird couple.

Me and my flatmate had a party at our (not-so-new-anymore) apartment and the theme was
DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE.

Think Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland with extra gore and creepiness.

Naturally because this event was at my home, I got to be Alice ;)

I went to a vintage fair in Leeds last month and my friend spotted the PERFECT Alice dress.
It cost about £7 which is brilliant, I wanted something I can rip up and cover in blood so I didn't want to spend a lot.


Before
 I used white face makeup and fake blood, £1 each from Wilkos. For my eye makeup, I used red face makeup (£1 ASDA) and Smiffy's black face paint (£3 ASDA). I'm also wearing my fave Revlon lipstick in 477 Black Cherry (featured here).

After

We decorated the apartment with my flatmate's graphic designs he'd printed including door signs, playing cards and hanging suit symbols. Safe to say, it looked ace.

There were also stolen (or unwittingly donated) tiny bottles we used for shots that were ideal for the theme and I baked some pumpkin buns - eat your heart out, Mary Berry.





Everyone had a really good time and it was definitely a good theme, the makeup and costumes looked fab and a lot of drinking games were thoroughly enjoyed.


 


Hope you all had an amazing halloween, did you have a party to celebrate?




LEEDS // PLACES TO EAT

I'm originally from Leeds but didn't appreciate it until I left for uni. Now I've been back for a while I've found I LOVE it and I understand the hype other people have always applied to the city. There's something for everyone, the people are (sometimes) friendly and it is bloody lively.

I've put together a few of my favourite places to eat in Leeds so if you're lucky enough to be up North, you can check them out.



This has been one of my favourite drinking holes for a while. It's just the right amount of comfortable and lively but it was only recently I went in for food. It's similar to your typical pub food menu but better quality, better presentation and better value for money. It's such a nice atmosphere to have a casual dinner in and with Rekorderlig on draught, I am not complaining.

For the veggies: There's no skimping on the veggie menu like a lot of other pubs and bars do. There is a lot to choose from and from my experience, the dishes are beaut. (Try the veggie burrito. Trust me.)

I love the eclectic, over-the-top pub interior. It's great for after work drinks, they have various music nights or just go for a quiet game of pool and catch up with friends.

It's also the perfect place for a date - just throwing that out there ;)



This is new to Leeds, quirky and sells the best burger you will have. Ever.
The bar entrance is a great meeting place and any restaurant that sells Aspall cider is a winner in my book. There's also a huge choice of cocktails and ale (the boyfriend was chuffed with his 2 Pt. jar of Longhammer!)

Full of really cool artwork and graphics, I absolutely love the look and feel of the downstairs restaurant area. There's even a disco inspired corner like something straight out of Phoenix nights.
Like your typical, american diner style, the tables are pretty snug so not somewhere to go if you want to have a private conversation as the place can be crammed on an evening. Also not a place to go if you've had a hard day shopping in town - there is no room for your six Primark bags here, friend.

Now the food. The menu is available on the website here and it's spot on. Word of warning though, the side portions are massive! Great with a group of friends, get a bit of everything and enjoy!

The Everyman cinema itself is always a luxury but for the first time this month, I visited the Pizzeria beforehand as well. Every person we spoke to was lovely, extremely helpful and the food was divine.
We chose the standard wood fired pizzas (pepperoni for me, spinach and mushroom for my mum!) and they were huge! Great value for money, especially as I expected it to be much more expensive due to the cinema prices.

What's better than great pizza before a film? Great pizza during the film. At the Everyman you can also pre-order pizza to arrive just as the film starts. It's brought over to your sofa and you can eat and enjoy. Awesome.


Are you hungry enough now?

The customer service in all of these places is also spot on, so big props to those who most of the time are rushed off their feet but still make the experience great.

If you're in Leeds, check these places out and if you're not, get yourselves on a megabus or something.


THE LIEBSTER AWARD //


This is my first award and I am chuffed, thank you to Yari over at Yari's Adventures for the nomination! 
Yari asked...


1. What do you like the most about blogging?

It's a really good way of expressing my opinions and finding out what other people think. The blogging community is fabulous, it's nice to be a part of a new group of people.


2. If you could have anything in the world, what would it be?

I would love for myself and my boyfriend to be working for ourselves so we could spend more time together and travel!


3. What inspired you to start blogging?

Sort of inspired by the YouTube community but I much prefer communicating by writing. It's a great way of speaking to an audience about things you care about.


4. What do you love the most about yourself?

How much I've changed my perspective of life and now I'm super laid back, unlike I have been in the past! I'm also lucky to have been successful in a lot of things I've put my mind to.


5. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Amsterdam maybe? I haven't been to enough places for long enough to judge what it would be like living there.


6. Do you speak any other languages? What language would you like to learn?

I speak a tiny amount of spanish but would love to be fluent, it's beautiful.


7. What is your biggest achievement in life?

Ending up in a graphic design career after I decided I loved it at 16 years old.


8. What is your favourite food / dessert?

Sausage and mash/Victoria sponge cake mm


9. How old are you?

22 (yes, I still sing to the Taylor Swift song when I'm asked this)


10. What's your favourite season?

I thought it was Summer but yesterday, I had an overwhelming surge of happiness at the cold weather and brown leaves on the way to work. Autumn, apparently!


11. Are you a tea, coffee or hot chocolate kind of person?
Tea, tea and more tea. And green tea. And peppermint tea. Just tea.



Random facts about me...



My best marks at uni were in Spanish and Dance, even though I studied Digital Media



I want to start pole dancing soon



I am scared of driving but have passed my test



My wardrobe is mainly black and grey



I hate the Pearl & Dean score they play before films



My favourite band are Biffy Clyro



I once did Colin Firth's uncle's makeup for a film



I used to play the clarinet



My favourite TV character ever is Brooke Davis from One Tree Hill



I have a huge crush on Dave Grohl



I have twin nieces, two nephews and a goddaughter




I am nominating...









Callie Rose @ Callie Rose









Sarah @ Sarah Smiles



Lissy @ lissybeauty



Shannon @ Lipgloss & Love x



Michele @ Let me cross over



Jennifer @ jenmarier



Mary @ Mazzle



Your questions are...



1. Do you have any big plans for next year?

2. What is your favourite thing to do on an evening?
3. How old is your blog?
4. What is your favourite outfit?
5. Do you have any siblings?
6. Why did you start your blog?
7. Do you miss anyone right now?
8. How many lipsticks do you own?
9. What is your favourite book?
10. What is your favourite blog post you have written?
11. What is your life goal?


The Rules:

1. Acknowledge the blog who nominated you and display the award.
2. Answer all the 11 questions.
3. Give 11 random facts about yourself.
4. Nominate 11 blogs that you think are deserving of the award (if you can).
5. Let the bloggers know you have nominated them.
6. Give them 11 questions to answer


THINGS YOU SHOULD STOP WORRYING ABOUT IN YOUR 20s //

Source: Pinterest

I have had a wonderful last couple of weeks and that has led me to thinking what is so different right now, than how I was feeling last year? A lot has changed very quickly in my life for the better but the main reason for this is because I've also taught myself to be happy, cliche as it sounds.

Here are a few things that - now I'm in my twenties - I have realised you should STOP worrying about, they shouldn't dictate your life.




Money


Stop worrying about the things you WANT as long as you have the things you NEED.
Hopefully, you have a job, or a student loan, or an amazing family who can support you. This means as long as you have enough for the basics in life, you're pretty much set.

Forget about the new coat you were after or the fact you want to go on holiday next month if it's getting you down. You can sort out getting that extra spending money later but just enjoy what you have right now.



'All my friends are getting married,
mortgages and pension plans' 
Frank Turner // Photosynthesis

Frank hits the nail on the head in these lyrics.

When you're in your twenties suddenly everyone seems hell bent on getting engaged, having babies, buying houses and it seems like the world's most unfair competition. It's really, really not.

Hey, I'm the one who hasn't spent a crazy amount of money on a white dress and can afford to go travelling with my boyfriend. I'm the one who gets to buy cute baby clothes and be the fun babysitter then give the screaming child back to their parents. I'm the one who can ring a landlord when my flat has a problem and not have to fix it myself. 
Perfect.



Losing Friends

This is a weird one but guaranteed, you will lose at least one person you used to call a good friend in this decade of your life. Not because you end up arguing about 'grown-up issues' (see previous paragraph) but probably just because you drift apart.

It could be people who move away, or you move away and lose touch. It could be because you both make new friends or have a high flying career and work colleagues and they take priority.
It could just be, ultimately, that you have grown apart. And that's fine.

You will meet so many new people and trust me, your best friends will still be around come wind or high water. Don't worry about it.



Hope this gave you something to think about!
Anything you think is unnecessary to worry about whilst so young?


ETSY REVIEW// CHALKBOARD HOMEWARE


TREND // CHALKBOARD HOMEWARE


Previously, I did a blog post about George Home at ASDA and the things I absolutely love/want/need for my house this season. You can check it out here.

What I didn't mention (saving it for this post, obviously!) is the new theme of...



CHALKBOARD ACCESSORIES


(left to right)



This trend is a pretty nifty idea and I particularly love the teapot, although I'm not sure it would fit enough tea in there as I would like. They're cute, don't get me wrong, but I'm not the sort of person who likes everything to match and I certainly wouldn't want all my kitchen accessories to be black.

AUTUMN 2014 WISHLIST// FASHION

So this month I am on a serious budget due to a tax office hiccup (sigh) HOWEVER it hasn't stopped me lusting after certain fashion items I've come across on the high street and online.

Snake Fang Ring with Gold Teeth £50

Creature Jewellery

As mentioned in previous posts, I'm a huge fan of Made In Chelsea and in particular, Lucy Watson.
Her recent Instagram posts have so tempted me to keep looking at her jewellery range and I adore the Snake Fang rings in particular. I'll be adding it to my christmas list I think...



Mango UK Textured long coat £79.99

A New Winter Coat

I've wanted a long coat for a year now and the trench style blazer I originally saw in Urban Outfitters literally disappeared from the website and in my local store in less than 24 hours last year. I've not seen another I love as much until this one in Mango! It isn't quite as long but the texture and look is amazing. This is my A/W must-have.


Clarks Malm Magic £69.99

Tan Leather Boots

I own these exact boots in black and they are my absolute favourite pair. Perfect for dressing up and dressing down, comfy even with a heel, and absolutely bang on trend.
Can you imagine how excited I was to find they have brought out a tan version?!
Clarks shoes have always done me well and I know for a fact these would last years, so it's only right I splurge and get them soon. Then I can alternate colours throughout the season.
That's completely reasonable, right?



FIVE TIPS FOR FRESHERS//

Sooo it's been over a year since I graduated from university and although I'm glad to be in a career of my choice, I do miss being able to lie in till 12pm and drink until I threw up every weekday, just because.
(This is an exaggeration...kinda. I do not recommend this is how you spend your three years at uni.)

I've put together a few tips for those of you starting college or university for the first time this month.
It was absolutely one of the best times of my life, but every moment is completely worth it!


1) SAY YES

To everything.
Well, within reason.

You will have a much better experience if you come out of your comfort zone and say yes to things you never thought you would. If someone invites you to a party, if you're offered extra classes, if a mate asks you to feature in a film noir style exercise video... say yes. The options might not be as weird and wonderful as that but you'll be surprised. You'll meet more people and have so many more memories by saying yes to whatever comes your way.


2) WORK HARD, PARTY HARDER

Enjoying your university experience is vital but you have to find the right balance. In most cases, you can wing your way through first year and scrape a pass but funnily enough, you can learn a LOT from those first lectures. In my first lecture, I learnt that the art of creativity is to learn how to 'bullshit'.

This advice I have found to be the most useful I have ever been given in life.


3) YOUR STUDENT LOAN WILL NOT LAST FOREVER

It is the best moment to get thousands of pounds put into your bank account at the start of every term.
It is the worst moment to find that, after you've bought an Xbox One, a BB tank and a life-size cut out of the Queen, you only have £20 to live on for the next two months.

Spend it wisely so you don't miss out on any nights out or events towards the end of the year.



4) DO NOT HAVE SEX WITH SOMEONE YOU ARE LIVING WITH
Unless it's actually likely to go somewhere.

You don't want to end up with a reputation at the end of fresher's week. Even if one of the prospects of university for you is meeting a hell of a lot of new people and having sex with most of them. If you must, for goodness sake, don't do it with the people you'll be seeing every day for the rest of the year. It will be awkward. It will not be worth it.

Then again, you might end up getting on really well and end up living with them five years down the line...


5) JOIN A SOCIETY OR SPORTS TEAM

It's likely you'll meet tons of people and get on with some of them in your halls or in your lectures. Another awesome way is joining a society. Whether it's politics or netball, sign up to something different at fresher's fairs and you will get those few extra opportunities. And if you turn out to be really lazy, the sports team social night outs are completely worth doing anyway!


Have the most amazing time, first year was 100% brilliant for me and I have no doubt it will be the same for every one of you!