Posts tagged Art
As my regular readers will know, a few months ago my fiancé and I moved in together. Since then I’ve slowly been trying to make the house look more like a home, and though it isn’t yet complete (working full-time means very little time to nest!), we’re almost there. As such, I thought it was about time I showed you some of our decor, starting with the living room.
When we moved in the house had been freshly decorated with light brown and white paintwork, and a beige carpet throughout. Neutral tones aren’t usually my thing, but they were easy to work with when it came to adding colour. The living room has been brightened with purple throws, cushions and curtains, and an ambient orange lamp, but it’s the little extras that make it even more homely.
I’ve always liked small mammals and woodland creatures, and the current trend for such wildlife has meant I’ve managed to pick up some lovely pieces. Here are a few of my favourites…
I don’t usually like having an abundance of cushions everywhere, but that all changed when I found these awesome animal photo cushions in Asda, for £7 each. There were several different animals to choose from, but I went for the squirrel, as they’re one of my favourite animals, and the Highland cow, as it reminds me of a lovely time spent in the Scottish countryside a few years ago. These take pride of place on my sofa, and as you can see Miggley approves!
Time for Tea
One thing I struggled to find was a nice set of coasters, and then when I was about to give up, I came across these gorgeous Sass & Belle Wooden Owl Coasters from Flamingo Gifts. There are six coasters in the set (much better than the typical four you usually get!), and they come in a handy stand to prevent clutter when not being used. The quality and design of the coasters is fantastic, and they look great on my coffee table.
The Abode Mouse & Field Mug is also from Flamingo Gifts, and it caught my eye as soon as I saw it as the little grey mouse reminds me of my Russian Blue rat, Heather. I prefer a mug to a cup (it holds more tea!), and this is the perfect size for my morning brew. The simple but eye-catching geometric design is by artist Luzelle van der Westhuizen, and is a good fit for my natural theme. It would also make a nice present as it comes in a gift box, and costs an affordable £8.50.
By the Fire
My fireplace features a lot of owls, with the main attraction being this owl clock. My mum gifted this to me when we first moved in, and I love how it matches the wooden coasters above.
Another of my favourite owls is this lovely felted piece that I bought from a street market in Edinburgh in the summer, during the Fringe. It took me a while to find the right place for it, but it now has a home at the side of the fireplace.
I have two of each of these hares and mice. I have a thing for hares, and I bought these in Glastonbury about ten years ago whilst on a camping trip. They’re special to me, and it’s nice to finally have them on show in my own home! The mice are actually a salt and pepper set, but I have them on display as ornaments as they remind me of my heart rat Mog (RIP). Aren’t they cute?
The Rat & The Hare
These rat and hare sculptures were Christmas gifts from my dad, and they’re incredibly beautiful. They’re by Norfolk-based artist Tracy Whinray, and are wonderfully textured with such expressive little faces. I think they look great in front of the wooden pentagram, handmade by my step-dad.
What do you think of my woodland theme?
*The Wooden Owl Coaster Set and Abode Mouse & Field Mug were sent to me for review purposes. All opinions expressed are honest and my own.*
A few weeks ago I was asked by Amy of Nails by AB to review a set of her gorgeous false nails. Amy is a trained beauty therapist and her new business, Nails by AB, specialises in creating personalised designer nails which are painted according to your own specifications, and then posted out to you. Having seen some of Amy’s designs on Twitter I was hugely impressed so, of course, I jumped at the chance to try some of her nails for myself. The design I asked for and swiftly received was a set of bang on trend owls.
The nails came very nicely packaged in a drawstring bag, and a handy little tube of nail glue was also provided.
This stunning owly set contains 18 nails (9 pairs of differently sized nails), so you’re guaranteed to find a complete set that fits you in amongst them. A set of 18 owl nails costs £8.50 (including UK postage), which is incredible value for money considering the amount of effort that goes in to painting them! However, if you want a smaller set (which usually costs less) Amy will ask you to measure the width of your nails upon ordering, so that she can choose, tailor and shape your nails specifically to fit you. How great is that?
As I’m sure you can tell from my photographs, the quality of these nails is excellent. The design is simple, yet really carefully and neatly painted, and the colours used are really bold. I absolutely love these little owls, they’re just so cute, and it is obvious that Amy has a real talent for nail art!
Both my sister and I have tried these nails on and we both agree that they are very comfortable. The nails themselves are made of plastic, which is thin enough to be flexible and look like a natural nail, but not too thin so that they break easily. The glue that is provided keeps the nails on for a good while (basically until you decide to take them off), so if you want your nails to last longer than just a night out, these will.
The photographs below were modelled by my sister. She has far shorter nails than me so I thought it would be a good idea to show that the nails stay put even on short nails…
The Nails by AB range features many quirky, bespoke designs, including the latest Moustache Nails which cost £9.50 a set and celebrate Movember, with £4.00 of the proceeds being donated to the Movember charity. However, Amy is more than happy to paint a set of nails to your own design if you have something specific in mind. Nails by AB nails start at £6.50 a set, but only go as high as about £10.00, which is so worth it when you consider what you’d pay for a salon manicure.
If you would like to order some pretty little nails from Nails by AB, you can do so via Amy’s website, on eBay (under nailsbyab), through the Nails by AB Facebook page, or even through the Nails by AB Twitter account. Payment can be made through PayPal or Credit/Debit Card, and once payment has cleared your nails should hopefully be in the post to you within 2-3 days, sent FREE by second class post.
Nails by AB’s products and service are top class, and it is obvious that so much care and passion is put into Amy’s work, so please help to spread the word about this nifty little company!
Happy Halloween everyone! Halloween has always been one of my favourite days of the whole year, and every October 31st I love to dress up and cook up a big feast for my family and friends. This year is my first Halloween as a beauty blogger, so I thought I would create some Halloween inspired nail art to share with you all. So, here are my Halloween Pumpkins!
Aren’t they cute? The whole design took less than half an hour to do and I’m so happy with how they turned out. The colours I used to create this look are:
- Models Own ‘Orange Sorbet’
- NYC In A Minute ‘High Line Green’
- Primark ‘Black’
I hope you’ve all had a spooktacular day
A few weeks ago, to celebrate reaching a whopping 100,000 ‘likes’ on Facebook, Models Own had a 50% off everything sale on their website! As a nail varnish hoarder and a massive fan of Models Own I couldn’t pass up the chance to add to my ever-expanding collection of pretty polishes, so I ordered five bright and beautiful colours. If I was richer I would have bought a lot more, but unfortunately my budget doesn’t allow for that at the minute Models Own nail varnishes usually sell for £5.00 each, but in the sale they only cost £2.50.
Here are the shades I bought, also featuring some simple, fun nail art to show that I’m dotty about Models Own…
From Left to Right:
- Hed Kandi – Balearic Cool
- Purple Passion
- Orange Sorbet
- Green Tea
- Scarlett Sparkle
I love every single one of these colours and I’m so pleased with all of them. I wore Green Tea for most of the week and I was hugely impressed with it (it lasted for days without chipping) so keep an eye out for my full review which will be posted within the next few days.
I have entered the above photograph into Models Own’s Facebook competition, which involves posting a photo of your sale haul. The most creative photo will win a full refund of their order, and a set of their NEW, absolutely beautiful Wonderland nail varnishes, so I have my spotty fingers crossed!
Which Models Own shade is your favourite?
My fiancé absolutely loves wrestling and, though I’m not much of a fan myself, I do quite like some of the masks that some of the wrestlers wear. One of the wrestling companies that my fiancé likes is called Chikara, and every year they run a King of Trios tournament in which many teams of three wrestlers fight each other in rounds until one team becomes the ‘King of Trios’. This year’s winners were a team called the Spectral Envoy, so to celebrate their win my fiancé asked me do some Chikara themed nail art. I couldn’t say no, and since the winning team wore wrestling masks it seemed only right to paint these onto my nails! And here they are…
The wrestlers behind the masks are called (from thumb round to the ring finger):
… and the blue symbol on my pinky is the Chikara logo. Apparently Crossbones isn’t an official member of the ‘Trio’ (otherwise there’d be four of them, not three), but I’ve been told he turned up this year to help them win.
I used my trusty old dotting tools to draw this design and I’m really pleased with how the masks turned out, especially since the whole painting process only took about 20 minutes in total! My fiancé has already shown a photo of my nails to a lot of his wrestling friends from around the world and they were all very impressed, so they have the wrestling fan seal of approval at least!
The nail varnish shades I used were…
- Primark Nail Polish in ‘Black’
- Avon Nailwear Pro in ‘Coral Beat’
- Laval Crystal Finish Nail Polish in ‘White’
- Leichner Nail Gloss in ‘Blueberry’
I mixed the orange and blue shades with a little bit of white so it would stand out more on the black background and, as you can see, it worked quite well.
So, what do you think? This is something a little bit different for me but I definitely want to do another wrestling mask themed design in the future!
In this penultimate Chocolate Treat Week post I will be talking about all things nail related. I will be sharing my favourite chocolate coloured nail varnish, by Barry M, as well as some new nail art featuring five of my favourite chocolate treats! See if you can guess what they are. Oh, and of course there’ll be a few words at the end of the post from one of my favourite bloggers, in The Last Rolo.
Nail Varnish… Barry M Nail Paint in ‘Chocolate Brown’
Since first discovering them many moons ago, I have always loved Barry M’s Nail Paints, so it seemed only natural to include their ‘Chocolate Brown’ shade in this post. Like all of their paints, this one has a fantastic formula. It applies effortlessly easily and leaves no brush strokes or streaking behind, and opaque, even coverage can be achieved in just two coats. The paint dries impressively quickly too so there’s no hanging around for hours waiting for it to dry, and as you’d expect of Barry M it is very long-lasting.
‘Chocolate Brown’ is a really stunning shade, and it has a high shine, creme finish which gives it a true look of chocolate! The brown colour is highly pigmented with an undertone of orange so it isn’t too dark. As such, even indoors in dim light it looks rich brown rather than dull black. I’m sure you’d all agree that ‘Chocolate Brown’ is perfect for Autumn/Winter 2012 as deep, earthy nail shades are bang on-trend right now.
Barry M Nail Paints are available in Superdrug and Boots for £2.99 each, but as far as I know they aren’t currently stocking this shade. However, you can get it even cheaper on a great website I discovered recently called Scentsational. They are selling ‘Chocolate Brown’ for £2.95 with free delivery, but if you ‘Like’ their Facebook page you can get £1 off your order! That’s how I got hold of this shade, so you can definitely trust the website and discount code!
Nail Art… Chocolate Wrappers
After much deliberation about what I would do for a chocolate themed nail art design, I came up with this – the wrappers and logos of five of my favourite chocolate treats! Can you guess what they are?
If you said (from left to right) Cadbury’s Creme Egg, Terry’s Chocolate Orange, Cadbury Twirl, Milky Bar and Maltesers then you are correct! I had a LOT of fun creating this look and I’m very pleased with the results… Especially the Milky Bar nail! I surprised myself with how neat and accurate I got the font on that one. As usual, I used nail dotting tools to draw this design, and the colours I used were:
- Avon Nailwear Pro ‘Real Red’
- Saffron ‘Shade 16′ (Purple)
- Rimmel 60 Seconds ‘Blue My Mind’
- Barry M ‘Yellow’
- Barry M ‘Chocolate Brown’
- Laval Crystal Finish ‘White’
- Primark ‘Black’
- NYC In A Minute ‘High Line Green’
- Avon Nailwear Pro ‘Coral Beat’
- Leichner Nail Gloss ‘Blueberry’
What do you think? Which five chocolate bars would you include in this design?
The Last Rolo…
The Last Rolo is where I hand over the last few words of each Chocolate Treat Week blog post to another blogger. In the run up to Chocolate Treat Week I asked five of my favourite bloggers a couple of questions about their favourite chocolate treats, and today’s answers come from Ra of RaRa Reid.
Can you recommend any chocolate scented, flavoured or themed beauty/fashion products?
I would recommend the Soft Coeur masage bar from Lush. It smells incredible and is amazing for your skin. Like most Lush products! It’s also heart-shaped which I love. Lush also have a lip tint called Double Choc. I haven’t actually tried this as brown shades don’t suit me, but it just smells wonderful! As for fashion, I am a huge fan of kitsch jewellery, especially necklaces. I got a Jammie Dodger necklace a while back from Diamond Lil’s and they have a lovely Bourbon Biscuit necklace which I’d also love to add to my jewellery collection. This is their website. There are plenty of other sites that have similar necklaces to this too.
What is your favourite chocolate treat to eat, and why?
Choosing a favourite chocolate treat is really quite difficult, I love all chocolate! My absolute favourite has to be a Kit Kat Chunky Peanut Butter, I haven’t actually had one for over 2 years now though as Teddi is allergic to nuts. Other than that, I love all the chocolates that I used to have as a child. Like Freddos and Curly Wurlys.
Once again, thank you so much for reading my latest Chocolate Treat Week post. Please come back tomorrow to read the final chocolate themed post which will focus on fashion and accessories.
In honour of the forthcoming weekend I thought I’d give myself a day off from reviewing and post something a little bit different and fun today. I saw this tag post over at Nocturnal Beauty, and being the scholar that I am I thought I would give it a go. So, without further ado, here are my answers.
1. Favourite Book
2. Favourite Quotation?
3. English or Maths?
4. Science or Art?
5. 5 musical artists that changed your life?
1. Foo Fighters
– I’ve been a Foos fan since the late 90s, and I have been lucky enough to see them live twice. The last time I saw them was in Milton Keynes last July with my partner, and when they sang my favourite song, Everlong, with fireworks going off in the background, on a warm, breezy Summer night, I felt elated. The moment was just perfect and will stay with me forever.
2. Kate Bush
– For some unknown reason, I have never been much of a fan of female vocals, with the exception of Kate Bush. When I was about four I used to put my mum’s Kate Bush vinyl records on and dance around, and I really think Kate Bush’s songs helped to shape who I am today. I love her quirky personality, and I think it rubbed off on me a little bit through her music.
– I remember sitting in the back of my dad’s car when I was very small, windows down, sun out, Oasis playing very loud. When I think back to the music I was brought up with, Oasis played a big part in shaping my musical tastes. They were one of my dad’s favourite bands and in time they came to mean a lot to me too. In 2009 I was lucky enough to see them live, with my dad, a few weeks before they split up and I’m so pleased I got to see them!
4. Mike Oldfield
– Mike Oldfield is, in my eyes, a musical genius and Tubular Bells III is my favourite composition. It gives me goosebumps every time I listen to it, and Far Above The Clouds even makes me cry… Not many songs can do that!
5. Depeche Mode, T.Rex and Pink Floyd
– I’m cheating on this one, but all three of these bands have had a massive impact on me at various stages in my life. My favourite songs when I was a baby were by Depeche Mode, and T.Rex and Pink Floyd both opened my eyes when I was younger to a wider variety of music.
6. Favourite and least favourite subject at school?
7. Favourite celeb with a brain?
8. If you could study anything anywhere, what would it be?
9. What is your ‘nerdy little secret’?
10. Favourite beauty gurus who you admire for more than their love for beauty/fashion?
11. If your channel couldn’t focus on beauty/fashion, what would it be?
12. Name some things that you’re obsessed with that other people would find strange.
13. Name 5 people who inspire you (not friends or family)
1. Dave Grohl, because I admire his confidence, humour and outlook on music.
2. Kate Bush, because she’s a strong, successful woman and remains true to herself.
3. Jonnie Peacock, because last night he won gold in the Paralympics Men’s 100m final for Team GB, and I admire him for not letting his ‘disability’ stop him achieving highly.
4. Wynn Bullock, because his outstanding black and white film photography inspires me to be the best photographer I can be.
5. Vladimir Nabokov, because he wrote what I think is the best opening chapter of any book ever.
14. Who is your intellectual soulmate?
I hope you enjoyed reading my answers! Please feel free to do this tag yourself if you feel like it. Let me know if you do
Today I thought I would share my latest attempt at nail art with you all, which is themed around squares on a Monopoly board! After doing my Pac-Man nail art last week, I wanted to try some more game themed designs. Monopoly is one of my favourite board games and I happened to have MUA’s Shade 5 to hand, which is very much like the colour of a Monopoly board, so it seemed only fitting for this to be my next design.
What do you think? I’m rather pleased with how they turned out, although it was VERY difficult drawing the ‘Free Parking’ car using my left hand! I’m very happy with the ‘Go’ nail though, and I think the coloured cuticles look good.
The colours I used for this design were: MUA Nail Varnish Shade 5, Avon Nailwear Pro ‘Real Red’, Avon Nailwear Pro ‘Coral Beat, Barry M Nail Paint ‘Yellow’, NYC Nail Polish ‘High Line Green’, Rimmel Pro Nail Polish ‘Fancy Fuchsia’, Primark Nail Polish ‘Black’, Primark Nail Polish ‘Blue’, Laval Nail Polish ‘White’, Technic Nail Art Pen ‘Black’ and Sally Hansen Base & Top Coat.