Book Club: 2018 in review and 2019 goals

Book Club

At the beginning of this year I set myself the goal to read 7 books (you can read the post here)

I know it is not very many books but In reality when setting this goal I knew it was going to be a little unrealistic as school work does end up getting in the way.

This year I read:

  1. The da Vinci Code
  2. Origin
  3. A Dolls House
  4. A streetcar Named Desire
  5. A Handmaids Tale
  6. Kane and Abel

However half of those books are ones that are compulsory for me to read for my English literature A level so I am a little disappointed I hadn’t read more in my own time (particularly as only one of these were on that list I set myself). Nevertheless I will continue my ambition to read more.

I loved all the books I read, my favourite however was probably either Origin or Kane and Abel as they are both fantastic thrillers and overall much more enjoyable reading. I am a little unsure about The Handmaid’s Tale to be honest, I actually much prefer Nineteen eighty-four.

Here are the books I plan on reading next year (I will set myself the goal of 5, although I imagine I will have more time for reading as I have a longer summer after I have done my A level exams).

  1. Frankenstein By Mary Shelley
  2. To Kill a Mocking Bird by Harper Lee
  3. Weathering Heights by Emily Bronte
  4. The prodigal daughter by Jeffrey Archer (sequel to Kane and Abel)

Then the 5th one I am unsure about because there are some more classics that I would love to read however there are some really great new books I’d love to read to – particularly maybe the A Discovery Of Witches books as I watched the first series of the adaptation and I was hooked. I would also love to read ‘Circe’ or ‘Song of Achilles’ by Madeline Miller as I have heard they are amazing.

Reflection of 2018 and What I am Looking Forward to in 2019

Favourites

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Here’s a round up of all of my favourite things from this year….

Films (all released in 2018) that I have seen thus far:

I was going to include Avengers Infinity War to this list because although I did love it, it did end with me just having a lot of questions and i’m not sure that there was much of a plot for me to put it in my favourites of the year. Other notable films are Mamma Mia: Here we go again which had me dancing out of the cinema, it was such a feel good film and Leave No Trace which was a very thought provoking story about civilisation and the way we choose (or don’t choose) to live.

Music:

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There has been a lot of great music out this year and I have been building up my record collection but after much consideration these are my top 5 songs and albums…

  1. Jubilee Road – Tom Odell
  2. 73 – Rationale
  3. Nothing’s Changed – Isaac Waddington
  4. I know how to speak – Manchester Orchestra
  5. Ziggy Alberts –  laps around the sun

However, this year I have mostly been discovering and rediscovering older music that I have loved listening to including the soulful Teskey Brothers which remind me of great 60’s R&B/soul artists like The Drifters and Sam Cooke. Then listening to my usual old favourites like David Bowie, Queen and Stereophonics (the latter I saw at RiZe Festival and they were incredible).

Beauty:

Admittedly, I am not much of a beauty enthusiast – I much prefer skincare to make-up and I hardly ever purchase any – i’m pretty sure I’ve got make up in my draw that are years old and I tend never to really mix it up a bit. Nevertheless these are a couple of my holy grails.

– Origins Clear improvement face mask

Okay… so I may have only just received this for Christmas but I had to share because after using it a couple of times already my skin feels so much softer and smoother and it smells Devine!

Here’s me rocking my best look in this charcoal, golden colour face mask for your viewing pleasure aha

– Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation

I use the shade 3.5 pale. I apply it with the bare minerals full flawless face brush.

Doucce maxlash volumizer mascara

I discovered this last Christmas when my sister gave it to me from her advent calendar and I haven’t stopped using it since.

Moments:

– Pub in the park festival in Bath at the front dancing and singing along to Tom Odell.

– RiZe Festival with my gals, arms around each other screaming our hearts out to Bastille.

– Trip to Paris and Bordeaux with my family (my favourite part was a much anticipated (brief) visit to The Louvre, where I finally got to see the Mona Lisa and other Da Vinci works)

Screenshot the photo below and let me know your 2018 favourites!

What I am looking forward to next year:

New film releases…

– The Favourite

– Captain Marvel

– Star Wars

New Book releases…

– the Testaments by Margaret Atwood

– The path made clear by Oprah Winfrey

Moments…

– Finishing A levels

– Going to University (Hopefully – fingers crossed! – depending on how well the above goes!)

– Whatever else life brings and unexpected last minute plans

I hope you have an incredible New year and that 2018 brings you lots of happiness and that you achieve your own personal goals! I’ll be back in early January with my first issue of DARE magazine – so stay tuned!

HAPPY NEW YEAR! ❤ 🥳

 

 

 

10 Gift Ideas For Any Occasion

Beauty, Fashion, Favourites

With Christmas just around the corner you’re probably thinking about what to get for the special people in your life. It can be difficult buying presents for people for any occasion particularly if you are under a tight budget. Here are a couple of my favourite unique finds…

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For the Tavel lover – Scratch Map

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They can scratch off the places they’ve been on the map and plan trips they hope to go to. The idea is that they will try to scratch off as many places as they can. I have one of these my self and I love it.

If they are a student there are loads of gap year and bucket list books by lonely planet that you can get on amazon or any good book store.

For the book worm – Book cover locket

I think these are so unique, they do a variety of book covers so you could find their favourite classic novel to put on to the locket.

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For the film lover – popcorn machine and bags

I mean it is their own cinema at home!

or for the person who wants to get into movies… a scratch off 100 bucket list movies poster 

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(photo from amazons website linked above) 

For the music lover – (if they have vinyls) a vinyl frame, new earphones or portable speaker. For the person who I into hearing all the classics there is also a scratch off 100 albums bucket list poster.

For anyone – books

I don’t think anyone can go wrong with a book, it can be about anything they are interested in from gardening to traveling. There are loads of thoughtful books on Urban outfitters if you need some ideas.

 For the fashion aficionado – The new fashion rules by Victoria Magrath

I have followed Victoria’s blog for a long time now and she has the most amazing style and knowledge of fashion – definitely something a fashion lover would love to delve into.

For the Make up addict – Makeup storage or a set from their favourite brand. ASOS do some great ones by a variety of brands or if you want to go more upmarket SpaceNK do some beautiful sets as well from bath and body to lipstick and eyeshadows.

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For the foodie – something for the kitchen or you can get books of the best places to eat in different cities.

For the sentimental – A photo book

I recommend Snapfish as I have used them before – the quality is really good and they are the cheapest company I can find that do them. I did one for my Dad documenting all the places we had travelled to and adventures we had been on. You can customise the pages yourself, adding text, changing the layout of the pictures and the background.

For anyone – Candles or bath things

Everyone likes gifts that they can use to relax. My favourite bath oils are from Aromatherapy – they can be a bit pricy but smell amazing.

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I hope this little guide helps! Do you have any go to or unique gift ideas that you love? Tell me in the comments 🙂

Thank you so much for reading!

Book club: On My 2018 To Read List

Book Club

One of my resolutions was to read more. I have always loved reading but over the last couple of years schoolwork seems to have taken over and my passion for reading diminished a little. I am currently reading Origin by Dan Brown, an author whose books I have come to love, I’m about half way through and I’m hooked. Now it may be reading over schoolwork!

This is my  ‘to read’ list for the rest of the year…

Sense and sensibility – Jane Austin

I’ve been wanting to read one of Jane Austins novels for a while, I’ve seen the films and I really enjoyed Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte and Jane Austin apparently writes in a similar style. Its also one of those classics that I think will be really interesting to read.

Hidden Figures

The film was incredible, Looking at the women in Science who were behind making the Apollo mission possible but were never recognised at the time. Its supposed to be a really empowering read and a compelling look back into history.

Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine

This is currently one of the best sellers on Waterstones and looks like a thought provoking story line.

To kill a mocking bird

This is one of my friends favourite books and she’s been urging for me to read it for a while. Harper Lee explores with exuberant humour the irrationality of adult attitudes to race and class in the Deep South of the thirties through one man’s struggle for justice.

The Da Vinci Code

I am currently reading Origin, which is Dan Browns newest book of the Robert Langdon series, and I read inferno last year but I have never read the earlier books so I really want to read the first book to see where it all started. A lot of people say this is the best one too so really looking forward to reading it later this year.

Wild

I really enjoyed the film and it was a really poignant story about a woman who backpacks across America to find herself. I had wanted to read it before watching the film but I never got round to it – better late than never… right?

The Road

I think I am going to be reading this in English next year along with A handmaids tale and its always good to be ahead 😉 haha

A pair of silver wings

My dad recommended this book to me – he claims it to be one of the best books he’s ever read so i’m looking forward to seeing if I find it as good as he claims it to be.

If you have any book recommendations please let me know! It is such a struggle to find a good book and I hope that my reading list may have helped you. For my other recommendations please see my ‘book club’ section xx

 

What To Wear In The Colder Days Leading Up To Spring

Fashion

Spring is just around the corner which means injecting more colour into your wardrobe and maybe a few more florals however its still a little too chilly to dump the coats and embrace spring and the warmer weather it brings.

With that in mind, here a few items and outfits I am wearing in the transition from winter to spring, to still feel like spring is coming whilst not being absolutely freezing…

Denim jackets. These are perfect in the transition because you’ve still got an extra layer to keep warm but it’s more lightweight and not as bulky as a winter coat. It can also be worn with pretty spring dresses and skirts.

Light-weight Jackets. This is a military style jacket from Zara but there are many other forms of lightweight jackets such as longline blazers and trench coats.

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Adding pops of colour. It can be a colourful accessory, bright jumper or some quirky jeans… the choice is up to you.

Trousers. The statement trouser has been really popular in the last few months and I imagine it will stay that way into spring. They are great for spring because they are a little more lightweight and come in so many styles and colours.

Sweatshirts. Maybe dump off the chunky winter knits and opt for something lighter. This spacey one is from H&M and I love it.

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Thanks so much for reading 🙂 What do you like to wear in the transition from winter to spring? xxx

5 spring trends you have to try

Fashion, Style

Spring is only just round the corner (believe it, or not) so we can look forward to not having to layer up and to, hopefully, seeing a bit more sun. With that in mind our wardrobes may need a little updating, so I’ve done a little searching to find cheaper alternatives to my favourite trends seen on the catwalk. Here we go…

  1. The button down dress

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Above is a gorgeous white button-down off the shoulder dress from Warehouse on ASOS. It has a lovely sweetheart neck line and an A line skirt. Im not sure if I would be brave enough to wear this as I am far too clumsy to wear all white but I thought it was to beautiful to not include it in this post. So if you are not as clumsy as me and white dresses are right up your street this dress would be perfect for you for the spring season. Just imagine it with a straw hat and tan shoes… summer in an outfit.

Below is a lovely pale yellow button down dress from Urban outfitters. It has the same sweetheart neckline as the dress above but this one has straps instead of being off the shouldered the skirt is more relaxed with pockets. This is more casual than the dress above so would be perfect wearing casually, maybe with a denim jacket and a pair of white trainers. I love that it is yellow, it oozes sunshine and spring/summer weather.

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2. Floral dreams

Floral is always in at springtime; after all it is the season of new growth and new life. So these are a couple of my favourite ways to incorporate a little bit of floral in your life this spring.

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3. Rainbow: colour, colour and more colour.

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Inject a little more colour in your life with these items, you can go for a full outfit of multicoloured greatness or wear a multicoloured jumper or jacket – the choice is up to you.

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Or why not go for one block colour? I adore this one on urban outfitters that is in my favourite colour – YELLOW.

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As seen at the libertine Spring collection on the runway in a sparkly multicoloured suit.

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4.  Blazers

Smart or casual; blazers are great for everything. Smarten up an outfit for work with a more tailored blazer, go for one more loose fitting for a casual day out or go for something a bit quirky with a tux fitting blazer. The options with this trend are endless.

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Stradivarius Pinstripe Soft Tailored Blazer

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River island tailored tux blazer on asos. 

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(seen on Pinterest)

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As seen on Gucci Spring runway

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Forever 21 stripe blazer

5. Faces

Illustrations or photos, having people on your clothes is a growing trend. I already inject this style into my hand painted jackets and now it is becoming more and more popular with illustration graphics and photos of celebs. Who you want to wear on your clothes is down to you, there are a lot of options out there. Here a few Ive found….

ASOS and Zara also do some with celebrities like Whitney Houston and David Bowie if thats more up your street.

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Above – Stella McCartney faces sweatshirt

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Above – Missoni spring collection 2018 on the runway.

Photos are from the websites attached or Pinterest.

I hope you have found a trend here that you might experiment with this spring, please comment below if you do and if there are any other high street options you have found i’d love to know!

Happy 2018!

Thoughts

Its a new year, a time to reflect and think about what you want to achieve in the year. I  like to think about these things leading up to a new year: Things I want to do, Habits I want to break, Habits I want to start, Films I want to see, Places I want to go, Achievements I want to make, New things I want to try.

Instead of thinking of them as resolutions its more of a list of things I want to aim for and do throughout the year.

A couple of these for me are:

To Blog more frequently

Start youtube

exercise more often

learn how to take better photos

write a book

To read: Origins, hidden figures (I saw the film earlier in the year and thought it was really good)

In terms of films to watch, there are a lot of good films out next year. I am most looking forward to the new mamma Mia, Star Wars; Han Solo, Robin Hood and the new X men. I also have a film ‘bucket list’ which I have been building up over 2017 (mostly from the top 100 best rated films) so I will continue to watch those.

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I think its important to think about ways to improve yourself because it allows you to have a year plan to reach you much larger goals and to set yourself smaller, achievable goals. The new year is a good time to do this because many think of it as a fresh start and as a much more definitive beginning to start those ‘resolutions’ but you can start setting goals for yourself at any time.

What are your goals for 2018? Hope you have an amazing new year and thanks so much for reading 🙂

shop my outfit:

top: primark

jacket: vintage

jeans: topshop

Boots: office

lipstick: Dior